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Verthemex (Frankreich)
Region Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
Department (No) Savoie (73)
Arrondissement Chambéry
Canton Bugey savoyard
Community association Yenne
Coordinates 45° 38′ N, 5° 47′ ECoordinates 45° 38′ N, 5° 47′ O
Height 410–1467 m
Area 9,22 km²
Inhabitants 231 (January 1, 2018)
Population density 25 inhabitants/km²
Postal code 73170
INSEE code

Mayor’s office (Mairie) with village school in Verthemex

Verthemex is a French commune with 231 inhabitants (as of 1 January 2018) in the Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. It is part of the canton of Bugey savoyard in the arrondissement of Chambéry and is a member of the Yenne federation of communes.



Verthemex is located at 662 m, about 13 kilometres northwest of the prefecture of Chambéry and 75 kilometres east of the city of Lyon (as the crow flies). The village lies on the western edge of the Département Savoie on the western slope of a mountain range that separates Lac du Bourget from the Rhone Valley. Neighbouring municipalities of Verthemex are Meyrieux-Trouet to the north, Le Bourget-du-Lac and La Motte-Servolex to the east and Marcieux to the south and west.


The area of the 892.26 km² commune covers a section of the southern French Jura on the west side of an anticline that extends west of Lac du Bourget in a north-south direction. The crest of this anticline forms the eastern boundary of the commune in the area of Mont du Chat, where Verthemex’s highest elevation of 1467 m is reached. Its steep, wooded flank changes to a less pronounced slope in the area of the village centre, which continues to the deeply incised Flon stream. Two of its right tributaries, the Ruisseau des Balmes and Blanchet, drain the commune and form its northern and western borders.

Community structure

In addition to the actual village centre, Verthemex also includes several hamlet settlements and farmsteads, including:

  • Vacheresse, La Ville and Les Buissons (around 920 m) on a plateau on the western slope of Mont du Chat,
  • Le Campet(550 m) and L’ Abbaye ( 520m) to the west of the village centre.


The village was first recorded in 1209 as ad Vertemays. Here it is not clear whether the name goes back to a place description or a proper name. About a hundred years later the name Vertemex is found.[1] In the Middle Ages, a small lordship existed in Verthemex, which was in the possession of the lords of Saint-Agneux (today part of Saint-Paul), documented since 1272. From 1803 to 1834, the parish of Verthemex was merged with that of Meyrieux-Trouet.[2]

A mill, the Moulin dit de Vaux, worked on the watercourse of the Ruisseau des Balmes and was already recorded on the maps in 1732. It was closed down in 1930 and its mill ponds were used for fish farming.[3]

Places of interest

From the summit chain of Mont du Chat, which is accessible by a hiking trail, there is an impressive view both to the east with Lac du Bourget and the city of Chambéry in front of the Alpine panorama, as well as to the west side with the Jura mountain ranges behind the Rhone.


Year 1962 1968 1975 1982 1990 1999 2006 2011
Inhabitants 143 124 113 117 127 141 164 173
Sources: Cassini and INSEE

With 231 inhabitants (as of 1 January 2018)[4] verthemex is one of the very small communes of the Savoie department. After a decline in population in the first half of the 20th century (over 300 inhabitants were regularly counted before 1900), a slight population increase has been recorded again since the 1990s.[5] The inhabitants of Verthemex are called Verthemelan(ne)s in French.

Economy and infrastructure

Verthemex was a predominantly agricultural village until well into the 20th century. In addition to the few remaining farmers, there are now a few local small businesses. In the meantime, the village has also developed into a residential community. Many employees commute to work in the larger towns in the surrounding area, especially in the Aix-les-Bains and Chambéry regions.[6]

The village is off the beaten track and can be reached by departmental roads from neighbouring villages. Access to regional and national infrastructure is provided by the Chambéry conurbation, about 25 km away, with its motorway connections, SNCF railway station and Chambéry-Savoie airport. The A43 motorway has an access road 10 km from Verthemex.

Web links

Commons: Verthemex– Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual references

  1. A. Gros: Dictionnaire étymologique des noms de lieu de la Savoie. Belley, Imprimerie Aimé Chaduc, 1937, pp. 493, 494 (French, limited preview in Google Book Search).

  2. J. J. Vernier: Dictionnaire topographique du département de la Savoie. Imprimerie Savoisienne, 1896, p. 730 (French, online at BNF [accessed 19 January 2014]).

  3. Moulin dit de Vaux.In: Servicede l’inventaire général du patrimoine culturel de Rhône-Alpes. Retrieved 5 November 2014 (French).
  4. French Institute of Statistics(

  5. Verthemex – notice communale.In: Retrieved 5 November 2014 (French, from 1968 population figures from INSEE).

  6. Dossier statistique on Verthemex.In: INSEE. Retrieved 5 November 2014 (French).