Dieppe is an English Channel beach resort, manufacturing center and seaport. It has a protected harbor, at the mouth of the Argues River, in the Département of Seine-Maritime. It is located in a valley that is flanked by white chalk cliffs. The town is 31 miles north of
Rouen and 105 miles northwest of
Paris. It is located at the intersection of D925, D915 and Route National 27. It is the nearest seaside resort to Paris.
The name Dieppe is probably derived from the Saxon word ‘deop’, meaning deep, and referring to the depth of the Argues estuary.
Dieppe has been a French seaport since the 11th century when its fishermen searched for herring. In 1339, the English sacked the town. During the
Hundred Years' War, the English occupied Dieppe from 1420 until 1435. In 1442, the English unsuccessfully laid siege to the port. The town prospered during the 16th century when Jean Ango, a local privateer [who once captured a fleet of 300 Portuguese ships], was raiding the English and Portuguese fleets.
Because the town’s inhabitants were mostly Protestants, it suffered during the Wars of Religion. Almost 10,000 of its town’s people died of the plague in 1668. After the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, in 1685, the town’s Protestants were again prosecuted. During the war against the Grand Alliance, the Dutch and English fleets attacked the town in 1694 and almost destroyed it. In the course of the 18th century, the town was rebuilt.
Dieppe was occupied, during the
Franco-Prussian War, from 1870 to 1871. It was again occupied by the Germans in 1940. It remained in German hands until it was liberated, by Allied forces, in 1944.
In August, 1942, a force of 5000 Canadian commandos, 2000 British commandos and a detachment of American Rangers and Free French, under the command of Admiral Mountbatten, attacked the port to test its defenses. The force lost some 3,500 men. The raid convinced Allied planners that a landing on an open beach would be less problematic than landing in a port.
Dieppe’s points of interest include the battle scared 14th century Church of Saint-Jacques and a Château, built in 1435, that now houses the Musée du Château with a rare collection of fine ivory.
Being one of the safest ports on the Channel, Dieppe has a regular car-ferry service to Newhaven, England that operates year around with the exception of winter. The town has a well-equipped commercial port that is one of the main suppliers of fish to the vicinity of Paris.
Since the 15th century, the town has been known for its bone and ivory articles. Today, Dieppe produces automobiles, chemicals, clocks and watches, lumber, processed food, refined petroleum, rope, ships, telephone equipment and textiles.
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Évreux is the capital of the Département of Eure. It lies on the Iton River, 55 miles west of
Paris, 25 miles south of
Rouen and 73 miles east of
Caen. It is the crossroad for Routes National 13 and 154.
The town was named after a
Celtic tribe, the Eburovices. By the middle
Gallo-Roman period, the town was flourishing. In the 4th century, Évreux became a bishopric. In the course of the Middle Age wars, between
Normandy and France, the town was repeatedly burned or sacked.
John the Good laid siege to the town in 1356;
Louis XI’s siege took place in the latter part of the 15th century. In 1417, Henry V built a Clock Tower to celebrate his victory of the French at
In 1940, Évreux was bombed by the German air force. The town continued to burn for nearly a week. The area around the railroad station was heavily bombed, by the Allies, during 1944.
Points of interest include the 12th through 16th century Cathedral of Notre-Dame, which was begun under
Henry II of England, with it’s remarkable 12th through 17th century stained-glass windows. It is also noted for its carved Renaissance altar screens. It is one of France’s largest cathedrals. Its Gothic choir, which was completed in 1260, and Renaissance main façade have been preserved. In the 16th century, the aisles of the nave were rebuilt in the Flamboyant style. The cathedral was badly damaged during World War II. The cathedral’s upper part was replaced after the war. Adjoining the cathedral is the restored Gothic style, late 15th century Episcopal palace that today houses a collection of local archaeological finds.
The 11th century Church of Saint-Taurin has a remarkable choir. It is located to the west of the cathedral. The Promenade des Ramparts is located to the northwest of Notre-Dame. It is laid out on the old Roman Rampart running along the river.
Évreux produces electrical equipment, pharmaceuticals, rubber and textiles.
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The village of Giverny is situated on the Epte Stream, near its confluence with the Seine, in the Seine Valley of the Departement of Eure. It is 47 miles northwest of
Paris, 40 miles east of
Rouen and 40 miles south of
Beauvais, at the intersection of D5 and D201.
Giverny is most famous as the home of the Impressionist painter Claude Monet. Monet was born in Paris on November 14, 1840. The painter lived in Giverny from 1883 to his death in 1926. Next to his house is the pond of water lilies that is immortalized in his great, wall sized paintings at the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris.
The house and garden have been restored with gifts of American benefactors, and one can see where Monet painted in his garden and in the area of Giverny in his latter years. He painted the Giverny Haystacks in 1891. In 1894, Monet went to Rouen where he painted a series of canvases of the Cathedral. He excelled at portraying the effects of light at various times of the day.
The Musée d’Art Américain nearby houses a collection of 19th and 20th century art.
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