Angoulême (äNgōlĕmˈ) [key], city (1990 pop. 42,194), capital of Charente dept., W France, on the Charente River. A former river port, it is now a major road and rail center. Its paper industry dates from the 15th cent., and it has copper foundries, and plants making electric motors, soap, and shoes. It was an early episcopal see and became (9th cent.) the seat of the counts of Angoumois. Ceded (1360) to England, it was reconquered (1373) by Charles V. Its remarkable Cathedral of St. Pierre was begun c.1110.
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