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Provins (prôvăNˈ) [key], town (1993 est. pop. 12,200), Seine-et-Marne dept., N central France. It is a tourist and commercial center. Built by the Romans on a rocky height, it was (11th–13th cent.) a prosperous trade hub and the site of one of the great fairs of Champagne. The picturesque upper town has preserved its ramparts dating from the 12th to the 14th cent. There is also a 12th-century castle keep ( tour de Cesar ) and the fine Church of St. Quiriace (begun 1160).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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