Morbihan — Department —
Coat of arms
Coordinates: Coordinates: Country France Region Brittany Prefecture Vannes Subprefectures Lorient
Government – President of the General Council Joseph-François Kergueris Area1 – Total 6,823 km2 (2,634.4 sq mi) Population (2007) – Total 702,487 – Rank 32nd – Density 103/km2 (266.7/sq mi) Time zone CET (UTC+1) – Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2) Department number 56 Arrondissements 3 Cantons 42 Communes 261 ^1 French Land Register data, which exclude estuaries, and lakes, ponds, and glaciers larger than 1 km2
Morbihan (French pronunciation: [mɔʁbi.ɑ̃]; Breton: Mor-Bihan) is a department in Brittany, situated in the northwest of France. It is named after the Morbihan (small sea in Breton), the enclosed sea that is the principal feature of the coastline.
Morbihan is one of the original 83 departments created during the French Revolution on March 4, 1790. It was created from a part of the Duchy of Brittany. It is the only French department which has no French name; Morbihan is in Breton. It is also the only department in France which has kept its original name.
The Gulf of Morbihan has many islands: 365 according to legend, but, in reality, between 30 and 40, according to how they are counted. There are also many islets which are too small to be built on. Of these islands, all but two are private: l'Île aux Moines and l'Île D'Arz. The others are privately owned, some by movie stars or fashion designers.
In the department of Morbihan, but outside the Gulf, there are four inhabited islands:
- Meaban, just outside the Port du Crouesty is an ornithological reserve and it is forbidden to alight there.
The Breton language is an important issue, with many advocating bilingual education.
The painter Raymond Wintz (1884–1956) depicted locations around the Gulf of Morbihan.
- Cantons of the Morbihan department
- Communes of the Morbihan department
- Arrondissements of the Morbihan department
- La Baule - Guérande Peninsula
- (French) Prefecture website
- (French) General Council website
- (English) Morbihan at the Open Directory Project
- (French) Cultural Heritage
- (French) Tourism website
- (English) Hiking in Morbihan
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