Delémont -
Country Switzerland Coat of Arms of Delémont
Canton Jura
District Delémont
47°22′N 7°21′E / 47.367°N 7.35°E / 47.367; 7.35Coordinates: 47°22′N 7°21′E / 47.367°N 7.35°E / 47.367; 7.35
Population 11,586 (Dec 2009)[1]
- Density 526 /km2 (1,362 /sq mi)
Area  22.03 km2 (8.51 sq mi)
Elevation 435 m (1,427 ft)
Postal code 2800
SFOS number 6711
Mayor (list) Pierre Kohler (as of 2008) CVP/PDC
Surrounded by Develier, Courtételle, Rossemaison, Courrendlin, Courroux, Soyhières, Mettembert, Bourrignon
Twin towns Belfort (France)
SFSO statistics
Delémont is located in Switzerland
View map of Delémont

Delémont (German: Delsberg) is the capital of the Swiss canton of Jura. The city has approximately 11,000 inhabitants as of 2007.



Delémont lies 30 kilometers (18.6 mi) southwest of Basel, about halfway between Basel and Bienne. It stretches along both sides of the Sorne river, shortly before it flows into the Birs on the northern edge of the Delémont valley, a wide depression in the Jura Mountains.

The 22 km2 (8.5 sq mi) area of the municipality is largely given to intensive cultivation. At the south end of the valley is the Montchaibeux, an isolated hill. On the north, the valley is bounded by the Les Rangiers range, with la Chaive (930 m (3,050 ft)) as the highest point in the municipality. The eastern boundary is the Birs River. In 1997, 18% of the land was residential, 43% was wooded, 38% was farmland, and 1% was unutilized.

The following towns belong to the municipality: Les Rondez and Les Vorbourgs. The surrounding municipalities are Develier, Courtételle, Rossemaison, Courrendlin, Courroux, Soyhières, Mettembert, and Bourrignon.


Climate data for Delémont
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Source: MeteoSchweiz[2]

Population and language

History of Population
Year Population
1770 921
1850 1650
1880 2793
1900 5053
1910 6161
1930 6393
1950 7504
1960 9542
1970 11,797
1980 11,682
1990 11,548
2000 11,353

With 11,364 inhabitants (at the end of 2007). Delémont is the largest city in the canton of Jura. Of those inhabitants, 84.3% are French-speaking, 4.0% Italian-speaking, and 3.1% German-speaking (as of 2000). The largest population was reached in 1970 at 11,797. Since then, the population has decreased slightly. In 2000, 70% of the population were Catholic, and 13% Lutheran, and the rest of the population belonged to other religions or had no affiliation.


Delémont hosts the parliament and government of the Canton of Jura, but many other governmental functions are housed in Porrentruy, such as the cantonal courts.


Already in 1770, the city began to develop as a strong trading and manufacturing center. Only about 25% of the population was still engaged in agriculture. In the 19th century, industrialization began, led by steel mills, watchmaking, and machine, cigar, and cement manufacturing.

Perhaps the most well known firm based here is Wenger. Their factory does not have a show room.

Today, Delémont is the economic and governmental hub of the canton, as well as the neighboring Jura region of the Canton of Bern. In addition to its traditional manufacturing core, it has developed much employment in the service sector. Although, it is plagued by a large unemployment rate, forcing its inhabitants to seek for jobs in the larger neighboring cities such as Basel or Biel.


At Delémont the railway from Paris, Belfort and Delle connects with the Bienne to Basel line. The section of line between Belfort and Delle is currently being electrified and an hourly optymo bus service maintains the connection between Delle and Belfort.[3]

Delémont has good road connections to the surrounding cities. It lies on the main road between Basel and Bienne, as well as La Chaux-de-Fonds. In 1998, the first stretch of motorway in the canton of Jura (the A 16) was opened between Delémont and Porrentruy.

The first stretch of rail line reached Delémont from Basel in 1875. The continuation to Moutier was completed in 1876. All trains from Basel to Bienne must reverse in Delémont.

During World War II, the train station was bombed several times by the Allies, killing a number of railway employees.

A well-developed bus system serves the surrounding countryside.


Porte au Loup
Porte de Porrentruy
The synagogue of Delémont

The area of the municipality was already settled in the Bronze Age. Fifteen urn burials have been discovered in the municipality. There is also evidence of a Roman settlement. The first historic mention of the name dates from 737 as Delemonte. In 1131, the first mention of the German name Telsperg was recorded. It is also mentioned as Laimunt (1181) and Deleymunt (1225). The name is a combination of the Germanic Tello or Dagili with the Latin word mons for mountain.

Since the 7th century, the region belonged to the lands of the counts of Alsace. In the 12th century, it was sold to the Bishop of Basel. The city was declared to have municipal rights by Bishop Peter Reich von Reichenstein on January 6, 1289. From 1289 to 1793, it was the capital of the estate of Delémont. During the Counter-Reformation a monastery of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin and an Ursuline convent were established, which remained until 1793.

In 1793, Delémont was conquered by French Revolutionary troops and became the seat of one of the districts of the Département du Mont Terrible. In 1800, this was incorporated into the Département du Haut-Rhin. After the fall of Napoleon, the region was given to the Canton of Bern in 1815.

During the 19th century industrialization, the German-speaking population increased greatly, and in 1880 reached nearly 40%. The city was briefly bilingual, but since 1920, the German-speaking minority has continuously decreased.

Since 1947, the city became a center for agitation for separation from the Canton of Bern. In the referendums in 1959 und 1974, a large majority voted for the creation of the Canton of Jura. From 1976 to 1978, Delémont was the meetingplace for the drafting of the cantonal constitution for the new canton, which was created January 1, 1979, with Delémont as its capital.


The medieval city center still has its original outline. Two of the city gates date from the 18th century: the Porte au Loup (1775) and the Porte de Porrentruy (1756–59). There are also still parts of the city wall, with the Tour des Archives, which was originally built in the 13th century. The city squares are marked by monumental fountains dating from the 16th century, in Renaissance style.

The Catholic church of Saint-Marcel was built from 1762 to 1767 with a mixture of architectural styles from the baroque to the classical. Other important buildings from the time of the Bishops of Basel are the Hôtel de Ville (built from 1742 to 1745), the Châtellenie (now used as a courthouse, remodeled in 1717), and the Episcopal Palace (1716–21). The late gothic chapel of Saint-Michel dates from the 17th century.

The synagogue of Delémont is in the western part of the city. The Castle of Domont, built in 1560, is now a restaurant. There are also ruins of an early medieval castle, the Vorbourg, on the west side of the Birs. Next to them stands a chapel, dedicated in 1049 and repeatedly renovated. The main altar with the Madonna dates from the 16th century.


Delémont was awarded the Wakker Prize for preservation of its architectural heritage in 2006.


The football club SR Delémont play in the Swiss Challenge League.

Notable people

  • Alfred Comte, Swiss aviation pioneer


  1. ^ Swiss Federal Statistical Office, MS Excel document – Bilanz der ständigen Wohnbevölkerung nach Kantonen, Bezirken und Gemeinden (German) accessed 25 August 2010
  2. ^ "Average Values-Table, 1961-1990" (in German, French, Italian). Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology MeteoSwiss. Retrieved 8 May 2009. 
  3. ^ In 2012 a new TGV line is planned to open between Paris and Basel with a stationat Meroux which will enable passengers from Delémont to travel to Paris in under 3 hours
This article incorporates information from the German Wikipedia.

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Delemont — Delémont Basisdaten Kanton: Jura Bezirk: Delémont …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Delémont — Basisdaten Staat: Schweiz Kanton …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Delémont — Fontaine de la Vierge, vue depuis la vieille ville Administration Pays Suisse …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Delemont — Delémont Delémont Une vue d ensemble de la commune serait la bienvenue Administration Pays Suisse Canton …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Delémont — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Delémont Escudo …   Wikipedia Español

  • Delémont —   [dəle mɔ̃], deutsch Dẹlsberg,    1) Hauptstadt des Kantons Jura und des Bezirks Delémont, Schweiz, in einem weiten Becken des Jura an der Sorne, 435 m über dem Meeresspiegel, 11 800 Einwohner (über 80 % französisch sprachig); Museum; Uhren ,… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Delemont — (spr. Dehlmong), Stadt, so v.w. Delsberg …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Delémont — (spr. dölemóng, deutsch Delsberg), Bezirkshauptstadt im schweizer. Kanton Bern, im Delsberger Tal (s. Birs), Knotenpunkt der Bahnlinien Basel Belfort u. Basel Biel Lausanne, 434 m ü. M., mit zwei katholischen und einer reformierten Kirche, Schloß …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Delémont — (spr. móng), schweiz. Stadt, s. Delsberg …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Delemont — (frz. Delmong), Delsberg, Stadt im bern. Jura, ehemals bischöflich baselisch, an der Sorne, mit 1700 E., Uhrmacherei und berühmten Bleichen, Eisengruben und Eisenwerken …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

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