North is the French department most septentrional. It east borders by its name or North Sea, of. It east constitutes of the French Flanders, which corresponds to the departmental districts of Dunkirk, Lille and Douai (formerly part of the count de Flandre), of Cambresis (old ecclesiastical principality) and of the southernmost part of the former count de Hainaut. In fact, the department of North describes a trace similar to the Province of Flanders pre-revolutionist, which had adopts the blazon with the black lion of the former same count de Flandre if this province included also Cambresis and part of Hainaut in addition to the count of Flanders itself. INSEE and the Post office allot code 59 to him.

It is the department more the people of France, and with the Pas-de-Calais, it constitutes the Nord-Pas-de-Calais area.


The territory including/understanding the current districts of Lille, Douai and Dunkirk was gradually incorporates in the Kingdom of France under the reign of Louis XIV. The area became definitively French only after 1713, with the draft of the peace of Utrecht.

This territory then became a province of France (administrative division) under the name of Province of Flanders, same if this province included Cambresis and the part become French of Hainaut, in addition to the part become French of the count de Flandre properly-known as.

The department was creates on March 4, 1790, after the French Revolution, during the division of the country in departments, pursuant to the law of December 22, 1789. The Province of Flanders taken then the less prestigious name of department of North, with for Douai chief town. The department comprised eight districts then: Avesnes, Bergues, Cambric, Douai, Hazebrouck, Lille, Quesnoy and Valencians.

Invaded in 1791 by the Austrians, Lille is one moment occupied in spite of the heroic resistance of its population. Pichegru takes it again in 1793.

In 1800, the districts became districts and their number was brings back has six: Avesnes, Bergues, Cambric, Cassel, Douai and Lille. In 1803, the chief town of the department was moves of Douai has Lille.

Several reorganizations intervened thereafter: the sub-prefecture of Bergues was deplacee has Dunkirk in 1803, the district of Valencians was creates in 1824, the sub-prefecture of Cassel was deplacee has Hazebrouck in 1857, and finally the district of Hazebrouck was removes in 1926 and just that of Dunkirk has.

Flanders: with gold to the sand lion arms and phosphoresced mouths

Hainaut: quarter of them 1 and 4 of gold, with the sand lion, arms and phosphoresced mouths and in 2 and 3d' but, with the lion of mouths, arms and phosphoresced azure

Cambresis: of azure to the three gold lion cubs


North belongs to the Nord-Pas-de-Calais area. It is bordering on Belgium and the departments of the Pas-de-Calais, Aisne and, on a few kilometers, of the Sum.

It is also borders by the North Sea. Several rivers or rivers cross it, in particular Yser, the Lily, the Scheldt, Scarpe and Sambre. The channel of Deule crosses Lille, the prefecture.

The Cassel Mount with its 176 m is often regards as the culminating point of North, undoubtedly by its emergent position in plain and its proximity with Lille. This reputation is however completely unjustified since the Mount of Baives exceeds it largely with its 239 bills of quantities of altitude. The true culminating point of North has Anor, in Avesnois and culminates has 272 bills of quantities of altitude.

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