Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Auvergne (classic Arverni), an ancient province of France which embraced the modern departments of Puy-de-Dome, Cantal, and part of Haute Loire. The Arverni were rivals of the AEdui for supremacy in Southern Gaul, and Vercingetorix, their chief, stubbornly resisted Caesar. Louis XIII. united the province to the crown of France in 1610. The river Rue divides the province into Lower Auvergne or Limagne, which is fertile, and contains the towns of Clermont, Riom, and Aigueperse, and Upper Auvergne, a rugged district, its principal towns being St. Flour, Chaudes-Aigues, and Aurillac. The mountains of Auvergne, all of them extinct volcanoes, are connected with the Cevennes by Mount Margerides, and fall into four groups - Le Plomb du Cantal, Le Cezallier, Le Mont Dore, and Le Puy-de-Dome. The Puy de Sancy (6,200 ft.) is the highest peak. The thermal springs at Mount Dore, Royat, and elsewhere bespeak the volcanic nature of the soil. The chief rivers are the Dordogne and the Allier, but smaller streams are fairly abundant. Amongst the leading products are iron, lead, copper, and coal, and quantities of cattle are raised. The Auvergnats retain their primitive characteristics, and are a rough, hardy, industrious race. They supply all the water carriers and street sweepers to Paris, and speak a strange dialect.