Charolais

Charolais

[shar-uh-ley]
Charolais, small region, Saône-et-Loire dept., E central France, in Burgundy, in the Massif Central, named after the town of Charolles. Cattle breeding is the chief occupation. The countship of Charolais was acquired by Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, in 1390. In 1477 the county passed to the Hapsburgs; from then on it shared the fortunes of Franche-Comté until it was acquired from Spain by Louis XIV and was definitively united with France and incorporated into Burgundy in 1761.

Breed of large, light-coloured cattle, developed in France for draft purposes but now kept for beef production and used for crossbreeding. White cattle had long been characteristic of the Charolais region, but the breed was first recognized circa 1775. A typical Charolais is massive, horned, and cream-coloured or slightly darker. The breed was first imported into the U.S. from a Mexican herd in 1936, but, because of problems with disease in the French herds, few were later imported. It is crossbred with beef breeds and dairy cows.

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Charolais (also Charollais) is an area of France, named after the town of Charolles, and located in today's Saône-et-Loire département, in Burgundy.

History

The county of Charolais was acquired by Philip II, Duke of Burgundy in 1390. In 1477 the county passed to the Habsburg. From then on its history was shared with the one of Franche-Comté, until it was acquired from Spain by Louis XIV and was united with France and incorporated into the province of Burgundy in 1761.

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