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Agde

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AGDE, a town of south France, in the department of Herault, 21m. from the mouth of the Herault, and 32m. S.W. of Mont pellier on the Southern railway. Pop. (1931), 8,708. It lies at the foot of an extinct volcano, the Montagne St. Loup, and is sur named "La Ville Noire" from the dark volcanic basalt of which it is built. Agde is said to have been founded as a port by Phocaeans under the name of Agathe. It was the seat of a bishop from 40o to 179o. Overlooking the river is the old Cathedral of St. Etienne, a grim fortress-like structure of the i2th century. The machicolations of the parapet are said to be the oldest exist ing instance of the kind. The Canal du Midi, uniting the Garonne with the Mediterranean, passes under the town walls. The mari time commerce of the town has declined, because Cette is near and the Herault shallow, but the fishing industry is still alive. The town has a tribunal of commerce.

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