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Mont-De-Marsan

MONT-DE-MARSAN, a town of south-west France, capital of the department of Landes at the confluence of the Midou and the Douze, 92 m. S. of Bordeaux on the Southern railway between Morcenx and Tarbes. Pop. (1906), 9059. Most of the buildings are in the older quarter, on the peninsula between the two rivers forming the Midouze. La Pepiniere, a beautiful public garden, extends along the right bank of the Douze. A keep of the 14th century, now used for military purposes, was built by Gaston Phoebus, count of Foix, to overawe the inhabitants, and goes by the name of Nou-li-Bos (in modern French " Tu ne 1'y veux pas "). The finest of the modern buildings is an officers' club, which contains a small museum. A court of assizes sits in the town; the local institutions comprise a tribunal of first instance, a branch of the Bank of France, and a lycee. The industries include distillation of turpentine and resinous oils, tanning, the founding and forging of metal, wood-sawing, and manufactures of machinery and straw envelopes for bottles. There is trade in resin, wine, brandy, timber, cattle, horses and other live stock.

Mont-de-Marsan, the first of the Bastides (q.v.) of the middle ages, dates from 1141, when it was founded by Pierre, vicomte de Marsan, as the capital of his territory. In the 13th century it passed to the viscounts of Beam, but the harsh rule of Gaston Phoebus and some of his successors induced the people to favour the English. The territory was united to the French Crown on the accession of Henry IV.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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