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Indre

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INDRE, a department of France, formed in 1790 from parts of the old provinces of Berry, Orleanais, Marche and Touraine. Pop. (1931) Area 2,666 sq.m. It is bounded north by the department of Loir-et-Cher, east by Cher, south by Creuse and Haute-Vienne, south-west by Vienne and north-west by Indre et-Loire. The department slopes north-westwards from the Pla teau Central and is drained by the river Indre. In the north is the Champagne, a land of corn and of sheep with fine wool ; in the west is the Brenne, once marshy, now drained and afforested; the wooded Boischot is in the south, east and centre. The average annual temperature is nearly three degrees higher than that of Paris, but the winter on the higher Boischot is somewhat severe. The average rainfall is 231 inches. Wheat and oats are largely grown, as are beetroots and artichokes. Wool-spinning and weav ing and iron-working are the chief industries; felt hats and parch ment are made.

The department is divided into the arrondissements of Cha teauroux, the capital, le Blanc and la Chatre, with 23 cantons and 247 communes. It is in the archbishopric of Bourges, where is the court of appeal ; it is in the region of the IX. Army Corps (Tours), and of the academie (educational division) of Poitiers. At Neuvy-St. Sepulchre there is an i ith century circular church with a I2th century nave; at Mezieres-en-Brenne a 14th century church; at Levroux a I 3th century church, and the remains of a feudal fortress; and a magnificent Renaissance château at Va lencay. St. Genou has an iith century church and a I2th century tower. There are several dolmens in the department.

century and department