Auxerre and Yonne river
Auxerre and Yonne river
Coat of arms of Auxerre
Coat of arms
Auxerre is located in France
Country France
Region Burgundy
Department Yonne
Arrondissement Auxerre
Intercommunality Auxerrois
 • Mayor (2008–2014) Guy Ferez
Area1 49.95 km2 (19.29 sq mi)
Population (2006)2 38,800
 • Density 780/km2 (2,000/sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 89024 / 89000
Elevation 93–217 m (305–712 ft)
(avg. 102 m or 335 ft)

1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Auxerre (French pronunciation: ​) is the capital of the Yonne department and the fourth-largest city in Burgundy. Auxerre's population today is about 39,000;[1] the metropolitan area comprises roughly 92,000 inhabitants. Residents of Auxerre are referred to as Auxerrois.

Auxerre is a commercial and industrial centre, with industries including food production, woodworking and batteries. It is also noted for its production of Burgundy wine, including world-famous Chablis. In 1995 Auxerre was named "Town of Art and History".[2]


  • History 1
  • Main sights 2
  • Personalities 3
  • Specialties 4
  • Famous regional wines 5
  • International relations 6
    • Twin towns and sister cities 6.1
  • See also 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9


Clock Tower

Auxerre was a flourishing Gallo-Roman centre, then called Autissiodorum, through which passed one of the main roads of the area, the Via Agrippa (1st century AD) which crossed the Yonne River (Gallo-Roman Icauna) here. In the third century it became the seat of a bishop[3] and a provincial capital of the Roman Empire. In the 5th century it received a Cathedral. In the late 11th-early 12th century the existing communities were included inside a new line of walls built by the feudal Counts of Auxerre.

Bourgeois activities accompanied the traditional land and wine cultivations starting from the twelfth century, and Auxerre developed into a commune with a Town Hall of its own. The Burgundian city, which became part of France under King Louis XI, suffered during the Hundred Years' War and the Wars of Religion. In 1567 it was captured by the Huguenots, and many of the Catholic edifices were damaged. The medieval ramparts were demolished in the 18th century.

In the 19th century numerous heavy infrastructures were built, including a railway station, a psychiatric hospital and the courts, and new quarters were developed on the right bank of the Yonne.

Up until recently, Auxerre was one of the most prosperous cities in the country.

Old Slide

Main sights

A view of Auxerre's old town with Saint-Germain Abbey in the background.
Church of St. Pierre en Vallée, listed as monument.
  • Cathedral of St. Étienne (11th–16th centuries). In Gothic style, it is renowned for its three doorways with remarkable bas-reliefs. The stained glass windows in the choir and the apsidal chapel are among the finest in France. The 11th century crypt houses the remains of the former Romanesque cathedral.
  • Abbey of Saint-Germain, existing from the ninth century. The crypt has some of the most ancient mural paintings in France, and houses the tomb of the bishops of Auxerre. Also interesting are the chapter room (12th century), the cellar (14th century) and the cloister (seventeenth century).
  • The Clock tower, located in the Old Town
  • The church of St. Pierre en Vallée (17th–18th centuries), established over a 6th-century abbey. In the style of late Gothic architecture, it has a tower similar to that of the cathedral. Portions of the decorations and inner chapels were financed by local winegrowers.
  • Church of St. Eusèbe, founded in the 7th century. The nave was rebuilt in the 13th century, while the tower is in Romanesque style.
  • Museum of Natural History.


  • Saint Helladius (d. 387), bishop of Auxerre
  • Saint Patrick (5th Century AD), Apostle to the Irish, visited Bishop Germanus of Auxerre here. According to the city's archives, it is said that St Patrick possibly studied in Auxerre for about 2 years.
  • Théodore Frédéric Gaillardet, (1808–1882), born in Auxerre, journalist, publisher of French-language newspaper Courrier des Etats-Unis in New York City, mayor of Plessis-Bouchard, France.[4]
  • Jean Baptiste Joseph Fourier, (1769–1830), born in Auxerre, mathematician, experimental physicist, and politician.[5]
  • Paul Bert (1833-1886), born in Auxerre, physiologist and politician.
  • Marie-Noël (1883-1967), born in Auxerre, poetess.
  • Jean Paul Rappeneau (1932), born in Auxerre, film director.
  • Guy Roux (1938), coach of AJ Auxerre for more than 40 years, holding the French record of 894 games in Ligue 1.


Famous regional wines

The whole region of Burgundy produces over 200 million bottles per year.

International relations

Twin towns and sister cities

Auxerre is twinned with:

See also


  1. ^ Populations légales 2007 de la commune d’Auxerre, INSEE
  2. ^'art_et_d'histoire
  3. ^ Councils were held here in 578 and 1147.
  4. ^ Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607–1896. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who. 1963. 
  5. ^ Howard Eves (1990). An Introduction to the History of Mathematics (sixth ed.). Saunders College Publishing. 
  6. ^ "British towns twinned with French towns". Archant Community Media Ltd. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 

External links

  •  Goyau, Georges (1913). "Sens".  
  • Auxerre Town Hall (French)