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Auvergne (French pronunciation: ​[ovɛʁɲ]; Occitan: Auvèrnhe/Auvèrnha) was a historic province in south central France. It was originally the feudal domain of the Counts of Auvergne. It is now the geographical and cultural area that corresponds to the former province.

Today, the whole of the province of Auvergne is contained inside the administrative région of Auvergne, a région which also includes provinces and territories that were not part of Auvergne historically. The capital of the région of Auvergne is Clermont-Ferrand.

In the 7th century Auvergne was disputed between the Franks and Aquitanians. It was later conquered by the Carolingians, and was integrated for a time into the kingdom of Aquitaine. The counts of Auvergne slowly became autonomous.

In the 10th century Auvergne became a disputed territory between the Count of Poitiers and the Counts of Toulouse.

In the Middle Ages Auvergne was broken into four feudal domains:

  • the county of Auvergne (created around 980)
  • the bishopric of Clermont or ecclesiastical county of Clermont (created around 980 as a sort of counter-power)
  • the dauphinate of Auvergne or the worldly county of Clermont (formed around 1155 after a coup but not formally created until 1302)
  • the duchy of Auvergne or the land of Auvergne (formed from the royal domain of Auvergne in 1360)

Auvergne was integrated in turn into the appanages of Alphonse of Toulouse, Count of Poitou and Count of Toulouse (1241–1271) and of John of Berry Duke of Berry, Duke of Auvergne, Count of Poitiers and Count of Montpensier (1360–1416).

During the Hundred Years' War Auvergne faced numerous raids and revolts, including the Tuchin Revolt.

In 1424 the Duchy of Auvergne passed to the House of Bourbon.

Quite contemporaneously, the County of Auvergne passed to the House of La Tour d'Auvergne, and upon its extinction in 1531 it passed to Catherine de' Medici before becoming a royal domain.

In 1434, the Dauphinate of Auvergne passed to the House of Bourbon-Montpensier.

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Categories: Auvergne