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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Varennes-en-Argonne or simply Varennes is a commune in the Meuse department in Lorraine in north-eastern France.

Population (1999): 691.



Varennes-en-Argonne lies on the river Aire to the northeast of Sainte-Menehould, near Verdun.


It was the scene of the Flight to Varennes: In June 1791 Louis XVI, with his immediate family, made a dash for the nearest friendly border, that of Austrian Belgium (Queen Marie-Antoinette being a sister to the Austrian emperor, Leopold II). But in Varennes Louis and his family were arrested, by Citizen Drouet, the local postmaster, who had been alerted by a message received from nearby Sainte-Menehould. It is said that at Sainte-Menehould, where the escaping party had spent the previous night, a merchant alerted the town authorities of their presence after recognizing the King's face on a coin, as Louis tried to buy something from a shop. Once more France's king, queen, and dauphin (crown prince) returned to the Tuileries in humiliating captivity, and Louis and Marie-Antoinette were subsequently executed on the guillotine.

Points of interest

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