Lens läNs [key], city (1990 pop. 35,278), Pas-de-Calais dept., N France. During the 19th and 20th cent. it was one of the most important coal centers in N France, but its mines are now closed. Much of the city's manufacturing has been replaced by service-oriented industries. The victory there (1648) of the French under Louis II de Condé was the last important battle of the Thirty Years War . Lens was occupied and devastated by the Germans in both world wars. A branch of the Louvre museum opened here in 2012.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: French Political Geography