Burgundy (French: Bourgogne), a region of east-central France. The region is mostly in the drainage area of the Saône River, and is famous for its Burgundy wines. At various times in French history, Burgundy was the name of two kingdoms, a duchy, a countship (or county), and a province. Now the region called Burgundy consists of the departments of Côte-d'Or, Saône-et-Loire, Ain, and parts of Yonne, Aube, Nievre, and Haute-Marne.
The region takes its name from the Burgundians, who came originally from the island of Burgundarholm (now Bornholm) in the Baltic Sea. They invaded the region of the Rhône and Saône rivers about 400 A.D. and set up the first Kingdom of Burgundy. In 534 Burgundy was conquered and annexed to the Frankish Kingdom, which included most of what is now France. In the ninth century the territory was divided, one part becoming the Duchy of Burgundy, the other the second Kingdom of Burgundy (also called the Kingdom of Arles). This kingdom included territory mostly east of the Rhône and the Saône. Conrad II annexed the kingdom to Germany and the Holy Roman Empire in 1034, but it became part of the Kingdom of France in 1380.
The Duchy of Burgundy included an area roughly that of the present region. From the 11th to the 14th century, Burgundy was ruled by feudal lords of the French kings. During the 14th and 15th centuries, the dukes of Burgundy were independent rulers. In 1477, King Louis XI of France seized the duchy after, a failed attempt by Duke Charles of Burgundy to annex the territories of Alsace and Lorraine. Burgundy was a French province until 1790, during the French Revolution, when provinces were replaced by units called departments.
The Free County of Burgundy, or Franche-Comté, was a territory adjoining Switzerland. For centuries Franche-Comté was contested among France, Germany, and Spain. In 1678 it became part of France.