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Prefecture building of the Vienne department
Prefecture building of the Vienne department, in Poitiers
Coat of arms of Vienne
Coat of arms
Location of  Vienne in France
Location of Vienne in France
Country France
Region Nouvelle-Aquitaine
Département 4 March 1790
 • Total 6,990.4 km2 (2,699.0 sq mi)
Population (2013)
 • Total 431,248
 • Density 61.6915/km2 (159.7802/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Viennois
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ISO 3166 code FR-86
Arrondissements 3
Cantons 19
Communes 280

Vienne is a department in southwestern France in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region. It is named after the Vienne river, the most important river in the department.


Vienne is one of the 83 French departments made during the French revolution, on 4 March 1790. It was created from parts of the old provinces of Poitou, Touraine and Berry, until the 15th century part of the Duchy of Aquitaine.

The new department had six districts: Châtellerault, Civray, Loudun, Lusignan, Montmorillon and Poitiers. The capital (now prefecture) was Poitiers.

In 1800, with the creation of the arrondissements in France, the six districts were changed into five arrondissements: Châtellerault, Civray, Loudun, Montmorillon and Poitiers.

On 10 September 1926, the arrondissements of Civray and Loudun were eliminated.


Vienne is part of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region. It has an area of 6,990.4 km2 (2,699 sq mi).

The highest point of the department is Signal de Prun, 231 m (758 ft) high, in the commune of Adriers, in the Massif Central.

The department is bordered by the departments: Indre-et-Loire, Indre, Haute-Vienne, Charente and Deux-Sèvres and Maine-et-Loire.

The main river in the department is the Vienne that gives its name to the deparment; it is one of the main tributary of the Loire river. The Vienne river flows through the department from north to south.


The climate of Poitiers is an oceanic climate with template summers, Cfb (Marine West Coast Climate) in the Köppen climate classification.

The average amount of precipitation for the year in Poitiers is 685.8 mm (27.0 in). The month with the most precipitation on average is October with 76.2 mm (3.0 in) of precipitation. The month with the least precipitation on average is August with an average of 40.6 mm (1.6 in).

The average temperature for the year in Poitiers is 11.7 °C (53.1 °F). The warmest month, on average, is July with an average temperature of 19.6 °C (67.3 °F). The coolest month on average is January, with an average temperature of 4.7 °C (40.5 °F).


The department is managed by the General Council of the Vienne in Poitiers. Vienne is part of the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine.

Administrative divisions

There are 3 arrondissements (districts), 19 cantons and 280 communes (municipalities) in Vienne.

Arrondissement Capital Population
861 Châtellerault Châtellerault 111,797   2,065.0   54.1 95
862 Montmorillon Montmorillon 74,909   2,998.8   25.0 98
863 Poitiers Poitiers 244,542   1,925.7   127.0 87

The following is a list of the 19 cantons of the Vienne department, following the French canton reorganisation which came into effect in March 2015:

  1. Chasseneuil-du-Poitou
  2. Châtellerault-1
  3. Châtellerault-2
  4. Châtellerault-3
  5. Chauvigny
  6. Civray
  7. Jaunay-Clan
  8. Loudun
  9. Lusignan
  10. Lussac-les-Châteaux
  11. Migné-Auxances
  12. Montmorillon
  13. Poitiers-1
  14. Poitiers-2
  15. Poitiers-3
  16. Poitiers-4
  17. Poitiers-5
  18. Vivonne
  19. Vouneuil-sur-Vienne


The inhabitants of Vienne are known, in French, as Viennois (women: Viennoises).

Vienne has a population, in 2013, of 431,248, for a population density of 61.7 inhabitants/km2. The arrondissement of Poitiers, with 244,542 inhabitants, is by far the largest. The other two, Châtellerault and Montmorillon, have respectively 111,797 and 74,909 inhabitants.

The city with more people living in it is Poitiers (87,427).

The 10 main cities in the department are:

City Population
Poitiers 87,427 Poitiers
Châtellerault 31,262 Châtellerault
Buxerolles 9,974 Poitiers
Saint-Benoît 7,096 Poitiers
Chauvigny 7,086 Montmorillon
Loudun 6,780 Châtellerault
Montmorillon 6,197 Montmorillon
Jaunay-Clan 5,952 Poitiers
Migné-Auxances 5,906 Poitiers
Naintré 5,850 Châtellerault


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