Pays de Caux

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The Pays de Caux () is an area in Normandy occupying the greater part of the French département of Seine Maritime in Haute-Normandie. It is a chalk plateau to the north of the Seine Estuary and extending to the cliffs on the English Channel coast. In the east, it borders on the Pays de Bray where the strata below the chalk show through.

Cauchois is a notable dialect of the Norman language. The Pays de Caux is one of the remaining strongholds of the Norman language outside the Cotentin.

The principal settlements are Le Havre, Dieppe, Fécamp, Yvetot and Étretat.


In the Norman language caux means lime, calcium carbonate. In French, for comparison, the word is chaux (the French 'ch' being pronounced as an English 'sh'. Example: Caux dialect candelle, English candle, French chandelle ). The name of the neighbouring Pays de Bray comes from a Gaulish word for mud. They appear to be so named as their soils distinguish them; the one of sticky clay, the other on dry chalk, but that is only a legend. In fact, according to something common in the former Gaul, the name derives from the Celtic tribe that lived here in ancient time: the Caletes (or Caleti. It means "the hard or the courageous people", breton kaled hard, welsh caled hard ) and this land was their territory. They are sometimes considered as Belgae or as Armoricans.


The Pays de Caux is a plateau of Upper Cretaceous chalk, like that which forms the North and South Down in southern England....
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