Prefecture and commune
Clockwise from top: Place de la Bourse by the Garonne, Allées du Tourny and Maison de Vin, Pierre Bridge on the Garonne, Meriadeck Commercial Centre, front of Palais Rohan Hotel, and Saint-André Cathedral with the Bordeaux tramway
Clockwise from top: Place de la Bourse by the Garonne, Allées du Tourny and Maison de Vin, Pierre Bridge on the Garonne, Meriadeck Commercial Centre, front of Palais Rohan Hotel, and Saint-André Cathedral with the Bordeaux tramway
Coat of arms of Bordeaux
Coat of arms
Motto(s): Lilia sola regunt lunam undas castra leonem.
"The fleur-de-lis alone rules over the moon, the waves, the castle, and the lion" (in French: Seule la Fleur de Lys règne sur la lune, les vagues, le château et le lion)
Bordeaux is located in France
Location within Nouvelle-Aquitaine region
Bordeaux is located in Nouvelle-Aquitaine
Coordinates: 44°50′N 0°35′W / 44°50′N 0°35′W / 44.84; -0.58
UNESCO World Heritage site
Official nameBordeaux, Port of the Moon
Inscription2007 (31st Session)
Area1,731 ha
Buffer zone11,974 ha
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.

Bordeaux (French pronunciation: [bɔʁdo] (About this soundlisten); Gascon Occitan: Bordèu [buɾˈðɛw]) is a port city on the Garonne in the Gironde department in Southwestern France.

The municipality (commune) of Bordeaux proper has a population of 246,586 (2014). Together with its suburbs and satellite towns, Bordeaux is the centre of the Bordeaux Métropole. With 1,195,335 in the metropolitan area, it is the sixth largest in France, after Paris, Marseille, Lyon, Toulouse and Lille. It is the capital of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region, as well as the prefecture of the Gironde department. Its inhabitants are called "Bordelais" (for men) or "Bordelaises" (women). The term "Bordelais" may also refer to the city and its surrounding region.

Bordeaux is the world's major wine industry capital. It is home to the world's main wine fair, Vinexpo,[5] and the wine economy in the metro area takes in 14.5 billion euros each year. Bordeaux wine has been produced in the region since the 8th century. The historic part of the city is on the UNESCO World Heritage List as "an outstanding urban and architectural ensemble" of the 18th century.[6] After Paris, Bordeaux has the highest number of preserved historical buildings of any city in France.[7]


Coins of the Bituriges Vivisci, 5th–1st century BC, derived from the coin designs of Greeks in pre-Roman Gaul. Cabinet des Médailles.

In historical times, around 567 BC it was the settlement of a Celtic tribe, the Bituriges Vivisci, who named the town Burdigala, probably of Aquitanian origin. The name Bourde is still the name of a river south of the city.

In 107 BC, the Battle of Burdigala was fought by the Romans who were defending the Allobroges, a Gallic tribe allied to Rome, and the Tigurini led by Divico. The Romans were defeated and their commander, the consul Lucius Cassius Longinus, was killed in the action.

The city fell under Roman rule around 60 BC, its importance lying in the commerce of tin and lead towards Rome. Later it became capital of Roman Aquitaine, flourishing especially during the Severan dynasty (3rd century). In 276 it was sacked by the Vandals. Further ravage was brought by the same Vandals in 409, the Visigoths in 414 and the Franks in 498, beginning a period of obscurity for the city.

Merovingian tremisses minted in Bordeaux by the Church of Saint-Étienne, late 6th century. British Museum.

In the late 6th century, the city re-emerged as the seat of a county and an archdiocese within the Merovingian kingdom of the Franks, but royal Frankish power was never strong. The city started to play a regional role as a major urban center on the fringes of the newly founded Frankish Duchy of Vasconia. Around 585, a certain Gallactorius is cited as count of Bordeaux and fighting the Basques.

The city was plundered by the troops of Abd er Rahman in 732 after storming the fortified city and overwhelming the Aquitanian garrison. Duke Eudes mustered a force ready to engage the Umayyads outside Bordeaux, eventually taking them on in the Battle of the River Garonne somewhere near the river Dordogne, described as taking a heavy death toll. After Duke Eudes's defeat, the Aquitanian duke could still save part of its troops and keep his grip on Aquitaine after the Battle of Poitiers.

In 735, the Aquitanian duke Hunald led a rebellion after his father Eudes's death, at which Charles responded by sending an expedition that captured and plundered Bordeaux again, but it was not retained for long. The following year, the Frankish commander descended again over Aquitaine, but clashed in battle with the Aquitanians and left to take on hostile Burgundian authorities and magnates. In 745, Aquitaine faced yet another expedition by Charles' sons Pepin and Carloman against Hunald, the Aquitanian princeps (or duke) strong in Bordeaux. Hunald was defeated, and his son Waifer replaced him, who in turn confirmed Bordeaux as the capital city (along with Bourges in the north).

During the last stage of the war against Aquitaine (760–768), it was one of Waifer's last important strongholds to fall to King Pepin the Short's troops. Next to Bordeaux, Charlemagne built the fortress of Fronsac (Frontiacus, Franciacus) on a hill across the border with the Basques (Wascones), where Basque commanders came over to vow loyalty to him (769).

In 778, Seguin (or Sihimin) was appointed count of Bordeaux, probably undermining the power of the Duke Lupo, and possibly leading to the Battle of Roncevaux Pass that very year. In 814, Seguin was made Duke of Vasconia, but he was deposed in 816 for failing to suppress or sympathise with a Basque rebellion. Under the Carolingians, sometimes the Counts of Bordeaux held the title concomitantly with that of Duke of Vasconia. They were meant to keep the Basques in check and defend the mouth of the Garonne from the Vikings when the latter appeared c. 844 in the region of Bordeaux. In Autumn 845, count Seguin II marched on the Vikings assaulting Bordeaux and Saintes, but was captured and put to death. No bishops were mentioned during the whole 8th century and part of the 9th in Bordeaux.

From the 12th to the 15th century, Bordeaux regained importance following the marriage of Duchess Eléonore of Aquitaine with the French-speaking Count Henri Plantagenet, born in Le Mans, who became, within months of their wedding, King Henry II of England. The city flourished, primarily due to the wine trade, and the cathedral of St. André was built. It was also the capital of an independent state under Edward, the Black Prince (1362–1372), but in the end, after the Battle of Castillon (1453), it was annexed by France which extended its territory. The Château Trompette (Trumpet Castle) and the Fort du Hâ, built by Charles VII of France, were the symbols of the new domination, which however deprived the city of its wealth by halting the wine commerce with England.

In 1462, Bordeaux obtained a parliament, but regained importance only in the 16th century when it became the centre of the distribution of sugar and slaves from the West Indies along with the traditional wine.[8]

Bordeaux adhered to the Fronde, being effectively annexed to the Kingdom of France only in 1653, when the army of Louis XIV entered the city.

Édouard Manet: Harbour at Bordeaux, 1871
Rue Sainte-Catherine in 1905

The 18th century was the golden age of Bordeaux. Many downtown buildings (about 5,000), including those on the quays, are from this period. Victor Hugo found the town so beautiful he once said: "Take Versailles, add Antwerp, and you have Bordeaux". Baron Haussmann, a long-time prefect of Bordeaux, used Bordeaux's 18th-century large-scale rebuilding as a model when he was asked by Emperor Napoleon III to transform a then still quasi-medieval Paris into a "modern" capital that would make France proud.

In 1814, towards the end of the Peninsula war, the Duke of Wellington sent William Beresford with two divisions, who seized Bordeaux without much resistance on 12 March. Bordeaux was largely anti-Bonapartist and had a majority that supported the Bourbons, so the British troops were treated as liberators.

In 1870, at the beginning of the Franco-Prussian war against Prussia, the French government temporarily relocated to Bordeaux from Paris. This happened again during the First World War and again very briefly during the Second World War, when it became clear that Paris would soon fall into German hands. However, on the last of these occasions the French capital was soon moved again to Vichy. In May and June 1940, Bordeaux was the site of the life-saving actions of the Portuguese consul-general, Aristides de Sousa Mendes, who illegally granted thousands of Portuguese visas, which were needed to pass the Spanish border, to refugees fleeing the German Occupation.

From 1940 to 1943, the Italian Royal Navy (Regia Marina Italiana) established BETASOM, a submarine base at Bordeaux. Italian submarines participated in the Battle of the Atlantic from this base, which was also a major base for German U-boats as headquarters of 12th U-boat Flotilla. The massive, reinforced concrete U-boat pens have proved impractical to demolish and are now partly used as a cultural center for exhibitions.

Other Languages
Acèh: Bordeaux
Afrikaans: Bordeaux
Akan: Bordeaux
Alemannisch: Bordeaux
አማርኛ: ቦርዶ
العربية: بوردو
aragonés: Bordeus
arpetan: Bordôx
asturianu: Burdeos
azərbaycanca: Bordo
تۆرکجه: بوردو
bamanankan: Bordeaux
বাংলা: বর্দো
Bân-lâm-gú: Bordeaux
беларуская: Бардо
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Бардо
български: Бордо
Boarisch: Bordeaux
brezhoneg: Bourdel
català: Bordeus
Cebuano: Bordeaux
čeština: Bordeaux
Cymraeg: Bordeaux
dansk: Bordeaux
Deutsch: Bordeaux
dolnoserbski: Bordeaux
eesti: Bordeaux
Ελληνικά: Μπορντώ
emiliàn e rumagnòl: Burdó
español: Burdeos
Esperanto: Bordeaux
estremeñu: Burdeus
euskara: Bordele
فارسی: بوردو
français: Bordeaux
Gaeilge: Bordeaux
Gàidhlig: Bordeaux
galego: Bordeos
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Bordeaux
한국어: 보르도
Hausa: Bordeaux
հայերեն: Բորդո
हिन्दी: बोर्दो
hornjoserbsce: Bordeaux
hrvatski: Bordeaux
Bahasa Indonesia: Bordeaux
Interlingue: Bordeaux
Ирон: Бордо
íslenska: Bordeaux
italiano: Bordeaux
עברית: בורדו
Basa Jawa: Bordeaux
kalaallisut: Bordeaux
ქართული: ბორდო
Kiswahili: Bordeaux
Kongo: Bordo
Kreyòl ayisyen: Bordo
Кыргызча: Бордо
Ladino: Burdeos
ລາວ: ບອກໂດ
Latina: Burdigala
latviešu: Bordo
Lëtzebuergesch: Bordeaux
lietuvių: Bordo
Limburgs: Bordeaux
lingála: Bordeaux
lumbaart: Bordeaux
magyar: Bordeaux
македонски: Бордо
Malagasy: Bordeaux
മലയാളം: ബോർഡോ
मराठी: बोर्दू
მარგალური: ბორდო
مازِرونی: بوردو (فرانسه)
Bahasa Melayu: Bordeaux
Nederlands: Bordeaux (stad)
日本語: ボルドー
Napulitano: Bordeaux
нохчийн: Бордо
Nordfriisk: Bordeaux
norsk: Bordeaux
norsk nynorsk: Bordeaux
occitan: Bordèu
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Bordeaux
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਬੋਰਦੋ
پنجابی: بورڈو
Picard: Bordieus
Piemontèis: Bordò
Plattdüütsch: Bordeaux
polski: Bordeaux
Ποντιακά: Μπορντό
português: Bordéus
română: Bordeaux
Runa Simi: Bordeaux
русский: Бордо
sardu: Bordeaux
Scots: Bordeaux
Seeltersk: Bordèu
shqip: Bordo
sicilianu: Bordeaux
Simple English: Bordeaux
slovenčina: Bordeaux (mesto)
slovenščina: Bordeaux
ślůnski: Bordeaux
српски / srpski: Бордо
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Bordeaux
suomi: Bordeaux
svenska: Bordeaux
Tagalog: Burdeos
தமிழ்: பொர்தோ
Taqbaylit: Bordeaux
татарча/tatarça: Бордо
Türkçe: Bordeaux
Türkmençe: Bordeaux
ᨅᨔ ᨕᨘᨁᨗ: Bordeaux
українська: Бордо
اردو: بورڈو
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: Bordo
vèneto: Bordò
vepsän kel’: Bordo (lidn)
Tiếng Việt: Bordeaux
Volapük: Bordeaux
West-Vlams: Bordeaux
Winaray: Bordeaux
吴语: 波尔多
ייִדיש: בארדא
Yorùbá: Bordeaux
粵語: 波爾多
中文: 波尔多