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Trip Planner Europe  /  France  /  Grand Est  /  Ardennes  /  Rethel

Rethel

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Rethel is a commune in the Ardennes department in northern France. It is a sub-prefecture and third-most important city and economic center in the department. It is situated on the river Aisne, near the northern border of Champagne and 37 km from Reims.Its inhabitants are called Rethélois.HistoryAccording to legend, the city was founded by Julius Caesar, who established a camp on the site of the city during his campaigns.The parents of St. Arnulf of Metz were said to have given all they owned in villa Reistete (in the city of Rethel) to St. Remigius, bishop of Reims, so that their prayers for a child would be answered.The city belonged to the Abbey of Saint-Remi and was administered by its advocati. One of them, Manasses I, became the first Count of Rethel. In 1481 the county, with Rethel as its seat, was elevated to the Peerage of France; it was elevated to a duchy in 1581 and in 1663 it became the Duchy of Mazarin.During the Franco-Spanish War it was captured by Spanish forces under Louis de Bourbon, Prince of Condé on October 30, 1652 after a four-year siege, but was retaken by the French in July 1653.
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