Amiens, France, the capital of Somme Department. It lies on the Somme River, about 70 miles (110 km) north of Paris. Amiens is an industrial and commercial center. Since the Middle Ages it has been known for the manufacture of cotton, woolen, and linen textiles. Other products include machinery, chemicals, clothing, and processed food. The Cathedral of Notre Dame is the largest cathedral in France and is regarded as one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture.
Amiens, settled first by Celtic people, was conquered by the Romans in 51 B.C. It was made a bishopric in the fourth century. Amiens came under the French crown in the late 12th century, and from then until 1790 it was the capital of the historic province of Picardy. The Peace of Amiens, which provided a short pause in the Napoleonic Wars, was signed here in 1802. In 1918 Allied forces defeated German troops in the Battle of Amiens, a turning point in World War I.