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Agen

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AGEN, south-west France, capital of the department of Lot et-Garonne, 84m. S.E. of Bordeaux by the Southern railway. Pop.

20,688. It is skirted on the west by the Garonne, here crossed by a stone bridge and by a canal-bridge.

Agen (Aginnum) was the capital of the Nitiobroges, and exten sive Roman ruins have been discovered. Later it was the capital of the Agenais. Its bishopric was founded in the 4th century. Agen frequently changed hands during the Albigensian wars, and at their close a tribunal of inquisition was established here. In the religious wars of the 16th century Agen took the Catholic side and joined the League in 1589. The cathedral of St. Caprais has an apse of the r2th century and three apse-chapels : the rest dates from the 12th-16th centuries, the tower flanking the south façade is modern. The church of the Jacobins is a 13th century brick building. The prefecture (18th century) was once the bishop's palace. The hotel de ville occupies the former Hotel du Presidial, an obsolete tribunal, and contains the municipal library. Two houses of the 16th century, the Hotel d'Estrades and the Hotel de Vaurs, are used as the museum. Through its excellent water communication, Agen affords an outlet for the agricultural produce of a rich district, and forms an entrepot between Bor deaux and Toulouse, dealing in poultry, prunes (pruneaux d'Agen), and other fruit, wine, vegetables and cattle. Flour, dried plums, pate de foie gras and other delicacies, manures, drugs, woven goods and tiles are made. Agen is the seat of a bishop. It has a court of appeal and a court of assizes, tribunals of first instance and of commerce and a chamber of commerce.

century and hotel