Aubusson, Creuse

Aubusson (French pronunciation: [obysɔ̃] (listen); Occitan auvergnat: Le Buçon, formerly Aubuçon) is a commune in the Creuse department region in central France.

A general view of Aubusson
A general view of Aubusson
Coat of arms of Aubusson
Location of Aubusson
Aubusson is located in France
Aubusson is located in Nouvelle-Aquitaine
Coordinates: 45°57′25″N 2°10′06″E / 45.957°N 2.1683°E / 45.957; 2.1683Coordinates: 45°57′25″N 2°10′06″E / 45.957°N 2.1683°E / 45.957; 2.1683
IntercommunalityCC Creuse Grand Sud
 • Mayor (2020–2026) Michel Moine[1]
19.21 km2 (7.42 sq mi)
 (Jan. 2019)[2]
 • Density170/km2 (440/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
23008 /23200
Elevation416–608 m (1,365–1,995 ft)
(avg. 512 m or 1,680 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.


Aubusson is situated in the southern part of the département, at the confluence of the rivers Creuse and Beauze. The route nationale N141 goes through the town.


Local lore previously held that the community was settled by defeated Berbers following the 8th-century Battle of Tours,[3] but it is now established that Aubusson has existed at least since the Gallo-Roman period.[4] The Camp des Châtres, within the town's boundaries, for a long time considered a Roman fort, actually dates back a little further, to the Iron Age.

The town was known as Albuciensis in 936 and under the name Albuconis in 1070. The name possibly originates from a name of a man, Albucius [5] Other scholars claim the name is from a Celtic word meaning craggy. In the Middle Ages the town was ruled by viscounts. The vicecomital family also produced a troubadour named Joan d'Aubusson.

Aubusson tapestry in the Musée Nissim de Camondo, Paris.


Aubusson is well known for its tapestry and carpets, which have been famous throughout the world since the 14th century. Its origins were born with the arrival of weavers from Flanders, who took refuge in Aubusson around 1580. There is a famous collection of Aubusson tapestries at Vallon-Pont-d'Arc. The style of the tapestries produced has changed through the centuries, from scenes of green landscapes through to hunting scenes. In the 17th Century, the Aubusson and Felletin workshops were given "Royal Appointment" status. A downturn in fortunes came after the French revolution and the arrival of wallpaper. However, tapestry made something of a comeback during the 1930s, with artists such as Cocteau, Dufy, Dali, Braque, Calder and Picasso being invited to Aubusson to express themselves through the medium of wool. Aubusson tapestry still thrives today, preserving a range of traditional skills. In 1983, l’Atelier Raymond Picaud chose Burhan Doğançay's Ribbon Series as a tapestry subject. Coventry cathedral's famous Christ in Glory tapestry, designed by artist Graham Sutherland, was woven in nearby Felletin. Installed in 1962, this was the world's largest vertical tapestry up until the 1990s.


Historical population
YearPop.±% p.a.
1793 4,445—    
1800 3,460−3.52%
1806 3,818+1.65%
1821 4,251+0.72%
1831 4,847+1.32%
1836 5,631+3.04%
1841 5,092−1.99%
1846 5,436+1.32%
1851 5,666+0.83%
1856 6,061+1.36%
1861 6,003−0.19%
1866 6,625+1.99%
1872 6,427−0.50%
1876 6,847+1.60%
1881 6,782−0.19%
1886 6,723−0.17%
1891 6,672−0.15%
1896 6,671−0.00%
YearPop.±% p.a.
1901 7,067+1.16%
1906 7,015−0.15%
1911 7,211+0.55%
1921 6,485−1.06%
1926 6,324−0.50%
1931 6,078−0.79%
1936 5,830−0.83%
1946 5,512−0.56%
1954 5,595+0.19%
1962 5,669+0.16%
1968 5,934+0.76%
1975 6,227+0.69%
1982 5,710−1.23%
1990 5,097−1.41%
1999 4,662−0.99%
2007 4,181−1.35%
2012 3,699−2.42%
2017 3,366−1.87%
Source: EHESS[6] and INSEE (1968-2017)[7]


The church at Aubusson.
Tabard square, Aubusson.
The Vallenet House, Aubusson

Musée Départemental de la TapisserieEdit

Created in 1981, the museum exhibits nearly 600 years of tapestry creation and production. This rich collection is composed of 17th, 18th and 19th Century tapestries and carpets. As well as works from its own collection, there are also regular exhibitions of tapestries from around the world, showcasing works right up to the present day.

Centre Culturel Jean Lurcat, Avenue des LissiersEdit

Maison du TapissierEdit

This is a permanent exhibition that is staged in an ancient Creusois house in Aubusson. The interior tells the history and traditions of tapestry as well as showing furniture of the period.

Historical buildingsEdit

  • The Clock Tower
  • The old town (ancient buildings)
  • Sainte-Croix church
  • Ruins of the chateau (also called le Chapitre)
  • The Vallenet House


In the medieval period, Aubusson was a vicomté (fr) which is similar to the English vice-county. Its rulers were:

  • Ranulf I  ?-934
  • Robert I 934-942
  • Renaud I 942-958 (son of Ranulf I)
  • Ranulf II Cabridel 958-1031
  • Ranulf III 1031-1060
  • Renaud III 1060-1069
  • William I 1069-1106
  • Renaud IV 1106-?
  • Renaud V The Leper  ?-1185
  • Guy I 1185- ?
  • Renaud VI  ?-1249
  • Ranulf V 1249-c. 1265
  • William II (heir) 1263, lord of La Borne, La Feuillade, Monteil-au-Vicomte, Poux, Pintarion and Damoiseau (1317), started a noble line that continued with his son Renaud VIII (1317–1353) and his successors.

Around 1263/1266 the vice-county was sold to the count of La Marche.

Notable peopleEdit

International relationsEdit

Aubusson is twinned with:

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Répertoire national des élus: les maires"., Plateforme ouverte des données publiques françaises (in French). 2 December 2020.
  2. ^ "Populations légales 2019". The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. 29 December 2021.
  3. ^ Baynes, T. S., ed. (1878). "Aubusson" . Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 3 (9th ed.). New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. p. 67.
  4. ^ Dominique Dussot. Archeological Map of Gaul - The Creuse. Academy Académie des inscriptions et belles lettres. Paris 1989.
  5. ^ Marcel Villoutreix, The names of places of the Limousin, history of a region, Association des Antiquités Historiques du Limousin, p 61, Dismiss 2002.
  6. ^ Des villages de Cassini aux communes d'aujourd'hui: Commune data sheet Aubusson, EHESS. (in French)
  7. ^ Population en historique depuis 1968, INSEE
  8. ^ Jumelage "en sommeil".

External linksEdit