PICARDY (/ˈpɪkərdi/ ; French : _Picardie_, French pronunciation:
) is a historical territory and a former administrative region of
France . Since 1 January 2016, it is now part of the new region of
France . It is located in the northern part of France.
* 1 History
* 1.1 Middle Ages
* 1.2 Modern era
* 2 Geography
* 3 Administration
* 4 Language and culture
* 5 Major communities
* 6 In popular culture
* 7 See also
* 8 Notes
* 9 References
* 10 External links
Map of the historical extent of
Picardy within modern French
The historical province of
Picardy stretched from north of
Calais , via the whole of the Somme department and the north of the
Aisne department. The province of
Arras area) separated
French Flanders .
From the 5th century the area was part of the Frankish Empire , and
in the feudal period it encompassed the six countships of Boulogne ,
Ponthieu , Amiénois ,
Vermandois , and Laonnois .
According to the 843
Treaty of Verdun the region became part of West
Francia , the later Kingdom of
The name "Picardy" (which may have referred to a Frankish tribe of
_picards_ or pike-bearers) was not used until the 12th or 13th
century. During this time, the name applied to all lands where the
Picard language was spoken, which included all the territories from
Paris to the
Netherlands . In the
Latin Quarter of Paris, people
identified a "Picard Nation" (_Nation Picarde_) of students at
Sorbonne University , most of whom actually came from Flanders .
During the Hundred Years\' War ,
Picardy was the centre of the
Jacquerie peasant revolt in 1358.
From 1419 onwards, the
Picardy counties (Boulogne, Ponthieu, Amiens,
Vermandois) were gradually acquired by the Burgundian duke Philip the
Good , confirmed by King Charles VII of
France at the 1435 Congress of
Arras . In 1477, King Louis XI of
France led an army and occupied key
towns in Picardy. By the end of 1477, Louis would control all of
Picardy and most of
In the 16th century, the _government_ (military region) of Picardy
was created. This became a new administrative region of France,
separate from what was historically defined as Picardy. The new
Picardy included the Somme _département _, the northern half of the
Aisne _département_, and a small fringe in the north of the Oise
Picardy was invaded by Habsburg forces under the command of
Emmanuel Philibert, Duke of Savoy . After a seventeen-day siege ,
St. Quentin would be ransacked, while
Noyon would be burned by the
In the 17th century, an infectious disease similar to English sweat
originated from the region and spread across France. It was called
_Suette des picards_ or
Picardy sweat .
Sugar beet was introduced by
Napoleon I during the
Napoleonic Wars in
the 19th century, in order to counter the United Kingdom, which had
seized the sugar islands possessed by
France in the
Caribbean . The
sugar industry has continued to play a prominent role in the economy
of the region.
One of the most significant historical events to occur in
the series of battles fought along the Somme during
World War I
World War I . From
September 1914 to August 1918, four major battles, including the
Battle of the Somme , were fought by British, French, and German
forces in the fields of Northern Picardy.
This painting by
Pierre Puvis de Chavannes
Pierre Puvis de Chavannes recalls the "Golden
Age" in the history of the province of Picardy. The Walters Art
In 2009, the Regional Committee for local government reform proposed
to reduce the number of French regions and cancel additions of new
regions in the near future.
Picardy would have disappeared, and each
department would have joined a nearby region. The
Oise would have been
incorporated in the Île-de-
France , the Somme would have been
incorporated in the Nord-Pas-de-
Aisne would have been
incorporated in the Champagne-Ardenne. The vast majority of Picards
were opposed to this proposal, and it was scrapped in 2010 (see
newspaper: "Courrier Picard").
Today, the modern region of
Picardy no longer includes the coastline
from Berck to Calais, via Boulogne (Boulonais), that is now in the
Calais region, but does incorporate the _pays_ of
Beauvaisis , Valois, Noyonnais, Laonnois, Soissonnais, Omois, among
other departments of
France . The older definition of
in the name of the
Picard language , which applies not only to the
Picardy proper, but also to the Romance dialects spoken in
the Nord-Pas de
Calais _région _, north of
Picardy proper, and parts
of the Belgian province of Hainaut .
Between the 1990 and 1999 censuses, the population of
0.61% per year (almost twice as fast as
France as a whole), while the
Aisne department lost inhabitants, and the Somme barely grew with a
0.16% growth per year. Today, 41.3% of the population of
Picardy stretches from the long sand beaches of the Somme estuary in
the west to the vast forests and pastures of the Thiérache in the
east and down to the châteaux of Chantilly or Pierrefonds near the
Paris Area and vineyards of the border with Champagne (_Champagne
picarde_) to the south.
The president of the regional council is
Claude Gewerc , a Socialist
in office since 2004. That year he defeated longtime UDF incumbent
Gilles de Robien .
Since 2008, the mayor of the city of
Amiens , the regional capital,
has been Socialist Gilles Demailly . He defeated longtime mayor Gilles
de Robien of the
New Centre party.
LANGUAGE AND CULTURE
Distinctive brick building style demonstrated on a monument in
the Somme ,
Historically, the region of
Picardy has a strong and proud cultural
identity. The Picard (the local inhabitant and traditionally Picard
language speakers) cultural heritage includes some of the most
extraordinary Gothic churches (
Beauvais cathedrals or
Saint-Quentin basilica ), distinctive local cuisine (including
_ficelle picarde_, _flamiche aux poireaux_, _tarte au maroilles_),
beer (including from Péronne's de Clercq brewery) and traditional
games and sports, such as the _longue paume_ (ancestor of tennis), as
well as _danses picardes_ and its own bagpipes, called the _pipasso_.
The villages of
Picardy have a distinct character, with their houses
made of red bricks, often accented with a "lace" of white bricks. A
minority of people still speak the
Picard language , one of the
France , which is also spoken in
Artois (Nord-Pas de
Calais _région_). "P\'tit quinquin ", a Picard song, is a symbol of
the local culture (and of that of Artois).
Picardy is the birthplace of Gothic architecture, housing six of the
world's greatest examples of Gothic cathedrals, which envelop the
history of Gothic architecture in its entirety.
Amiens Cathedral ,
standing as the largest cathedral in Europe, which according to John
Ruskin is the "Pantheon of Gothic architecture", could house the
Notre-Dame de Paris twice over. It was built in as little as 50 years.
Picardy also holds the tallest transept in the history of the Gothic
period located on Saint-Pierre cathedral in Beauvais, Oise.
The Museum of
Picardy , built between 1855 and 1867, houses a vast
array of great works, spanning centuries. Archaeology from ancient
Greece and Egypt to works of Pablo Picasso. The museum was built for
the very reason it is used today. Although
Picardy is one of the
least-known regions in France, its influence from art and most
certainly architecture is vivid throughout the world.
IN POPULAR CULTURE
* The song "
Roses of Picardy
Roses of Picardy " is a ballad written in 1916 during
World War I. In 1927, the song title was used as the title of the
silent British film of the same name.
Picardy is one of the minor characters in the Japanese manga
series _Hetalia: Axis Powers _.
* War Memorials in the
Aisne region of
* War Memorials in the
Oise region of
* War Memorials in the Eastern Somme
* War Memorials in the Western Somme
INSEE . "Produits intérieurs bruts régionaux et valeurs
ajoutées régionales de 1990 à 2012". Retrieved 2014-03-04.
* ^ _Loi n° 2015-29 du 16 janvier 2015 relative à la
délimitation des régions, aux élections régionales et
départementales et modifiant le calendrier électoral_ (in French)
* ^ Dunbabin.
France in the Making. Ch.4. The Principalities
* ^ Xavier De Planhol; Paul Claval (17 March 1994). _An Historical
Geography of France_. Cambridge University Press. p. 172. ISBN
978-0-521-32208-9 . Retrieved 25 March 2012.
* ^ Encyclopædia Britannica Online. History of Picardy.
* ^ Potter 1993 , p. 37.
* ^ Potter 1993 , p. 39.
* ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _A Global Chronology of Conflict: From the Ancient
World to the Modern Middle East_, Vol. II, ed. Spencer C. Tucker,
(ABC-CLIO, 2010), 518
* ^ George A. Rothrock, The Huguenots: A Biography of a Minority,
(Nelson-Hall, Inc., 1979), 48.
* ^ T. F. C. Hecher (1844). _The epidemics of the Middle ages_. G.
Woodfall and Von. pp. 315–318. Retrieved 25 March 2012.
* ^ "Picardie". _French.co.uk_.
* ^ William Philpott (5 October 2010). _Three Armies on the Somme:
The First Battle of the Twentieth Century_. Random House Digital, Inc.
pp. 3–4. ISBN 978-0-307-26585-2 . Retrieved 25 March 2012.
* ^ "Ludus Pro Patria".
The Walters Art Museum .
* ^ "Gothic Art in Picardy". 80011 AMIENS Cedex 1:
Office. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
* Potter, David (1993). _War and Government in the French Provinces:
Picardy 1470-1560_. Cambridge University Press.
* Picardy: the