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VESOUL, a town of eastern France, capital of the department of Haute-Saone, 236 m. E.S.E. of Paris on the Eastern railway to Belfort. Pop. (1906) 8702. Vesoul is situated between the isolated conical hill of La Motte (1263 ft.) and the river Burgeon. The vine-clad hill, from which there is a fine view of the Jura and Vosges mountains, is crowned by a votive chapel which in 1855 replaced the old fortification. The medieval walls of the town, dating from the 13th and 15th centuries, still exist on its northern side, and in the narrow and winding streets are many old buildings. The church of St George dates from the 18th century. In the pleasant south-eastern quarter are the promenade and the Place de la Republique, with a monument to the Gardes Mobiles who fell in the war of 1870-71. Vesoul is the seat of a prefect, a tribunal of first instance and a court of assize, and has a lycee for boys, training colleges for both sexes, and a branch of the Bank of France. Distilling and the manufacture of files and tapioca are among the industries. The town is a market for farm-produce and cattle.

Vesoul (Vesulium Castrum, Visolium, Vesuluni) is of ancient origin, but in existing records is first mentioned in the 9th century. It was originally a fief of the church of Besancon, and passed afterwards to the house of Burgundy, becoming, in the 13th century, capital of the bailiwick of Amont. The castle was destroyed in the 17th century. The town suffered much during the wars of religion and the Thirty Years' War. Vesoul belonged temporarily to France after the death of Charles the Bold, duke of Burgundy; was returned to the empire when Charles VIII., king of France, broke off his marriage with the daughter of Maximilian, king of the Romans; and again became part of France under Louis XIV. after the peace of Nijmwegen in 1678.

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

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