Aquitaine History

Summary of Aquitaine history until now

Under the Romans, the province of Aquitania extended almost as far north as the River Loire. The title “Duke of Aquitaine” was held by the counts of Poitiers from the 10th to the 12th century.

It passed to France in 1137 when the duchess Eleanor of Aquitaine married Louis VII of France, but they divorced in 1152 and when Eleanor’s new husband became Henry II of England in 1154 the area became an English possession.

Links between Aquitaine and England were strengthened, with large quantities of wine produced in south-western France being exported to London, Southampton, and other English ports.

Aquitaine remained English until the end of the Hundred Years’ War in 1453, when it was annexed by France. From the 13th century until the French Revolution, Aquitaine was usually known as Guyenne. The departments were created in 1790.

Bordeaux was 3 times used as withdrawal place and welcomed the government during the Prussian French and the two world wars. From 1946 onwards, Aquitaine has constantly developed and is now in the lead when it comes to aeronautics. Since 2003 the Samport tunnel links the Pyrénées Atlantiques to Spain and allows lots of exchange between the two countries.

Learn more about Aquitaine culture and traditions

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