1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Barèges

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BARÈGES, a town of south-western France, in the department of Hautes-Pyrénées, in the valley of the Bastan, 25 m. S.S.W. of Bagnères-de-Bigorre by road. The town, which is situated at an altitude of 4040 ft., is hardly inhabited in the winter. It is celebrated for its warm sulphurous springs (75° to 111° F.), which first became generally known in 1675 when they were visited by Madame de Maintenon and the duke of Maine, son of Louis XIV. The waters, which are used for drinking and in baths, are efficacious in the treatment of wounds and ulcers and in cases of scrofula, gout, skin diseases, &c. There is a military hospital, founded in 1760. The town was formerly much exposed to avalanches and floods, which are now less frequent owing to the construction of embankments and replanting of the hillsides. It is a centre for mountain excursions. The light silk and wool fabric called barège takes its name from the place, where it was first made.