ORLEANS

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ORLEANS ; a city of France, lying on the Loire ; previous to the French revolution, capital of the government of Orleanais, at present, capital of the department of the Loiret, with a population (1827) of 40,340 ; lat. 47° 54' N.; Ion.. 1° 55' E.; 75 miles southwest of Paris. The houses are well built, but the streets in general are narrow and crooked. It has four handsome public squares, a Gothic cathedral, a H6teldeville, the Chatelet, a splendid bridge over the Loire, of sixteen arches, and other edifices worthy of notice. The manufactures and trade of the place are still considerable Iwjt have much declined. Philip of Valois erected it into a duchy and peerage in fav .H* of his son, and Orleans has since continued to give the title of duke to a prince of the bloodroyal. Charles VI conferred it on his younger brother, who became the founder of the ValoisOrleans line. This line having become extinct, the title was borne by the third son of Henry IV, Gaston, who left no male heirs. Louis XIV conferred it on his brother, the founder of the present line of BourbonOrleans. (See the succeeding article.) Philip the Fair instituted a university here in 1312, which formerly had great celebrity. In 1428, the city sustained a siege against the English, and was relieved by the Maid of Orleans (see Joan of Arc), whose statue, in bronze, stands in one of the public squares.