Skip to main content

Île-de-France (region, France)

Île-de-France (ēl-də-fräNs), region and former province, N central France, in the center of the Paris basin, a fertile depression where the Marne and Ouse rivers join the Seine. Containing parts of the Beauce and Brie districts and of the Vexin, Île-de-France is now included in the departments of Paris, Seine-Saint-Denis, Val-de-Marne, Hauts-de-Seine, Val d'Oise, Yvelines, Essonne, and Seine-et-Marne. It is the most densely populated area in France. The region has numerous large industrial towns and residential suburbs and some agricultural production, mostly sugar beets and wheat. The region employs the bulk of France's computer specialists, engineers, and mathematicians, and has a highly developed transport system. Places of economic or historic importance besides Paris include Beauvais, Compiégne, Fontainebleau, Laon, Meaux, Melun, Nemours, Saint-Cloud, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Senlis, Soissons, and Versailles. Île-de-France was the cradle of the French monarchy. The name came into use only in the 14th cent. and was then applied to the land bounded by the Seine, the Ouse, and the Marne and their affluents. But the region, including the countship of Paris, had become part of the duchy of France or Francia by the 10th cent. When Hugh Capet, duke of France and count of Paris, was chosen as the French king in 987, his domains became the nucleus of the ever-growing crown land, which by the time of the death of Louis XI (1483) comprised the major part of present-day France. Île-de-France itself, which had been enlarged through the acquisition by the crown of various fiefs, was at that time constituted into a province subject to the parlement of Paris. After the French Revolution the province was divided.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Île-de-France (region, France)." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . 13 Dec. 2018 <>.

"Île-de-France (region, France)." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . (December 13, 2018).

"Île-de-France (region, France)." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved December 13, 2018 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.