Location (in red) within Paris inner and outer suburbs
|o Mayor (2014–2020)||David Ros|
|7.97 km2 (3.08 sq mi)|
|o Density||2,100/km2 (5,300/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+01:00 (CET)|
|o Summer (DST)||UTC+02:00 (CEST)|
|Elevation||51-160 m (167-525 ft) |
(avg. 90 m or 300 ft)
|1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.|
Orsay (pronounced [.s?]) is a commune in the Essonne department in Île-de-France in northern France. It is located in the southwestern suburbs of Paris, France, 20.7 km (12.9 mi) from the centre of Paris.
Inhabitants of Orsay are known as Orcéens.
There has been a village called Orsay on this site since 999, and the first church there was built in 1157. From the sixteenth century, the town and surrounding area were owned by the Boucher family, and it was in honour of this family that Louis XIV gave the quai d'Orsay its name. This is the reason that the Musée d'Orsay is not in Orsay. In the eighteenth century, the family of Grimod du Fort bought the land and received the title of comte d'Orsay. In 1870, during the Franco-Prussian war, Orsay was occupied by the Prussian army. 88 young "Orcéens" were killed in the First World War.
In 1957, largely due to the influence of Frédéric and Irène Joliot-Curie, the Institut de physique nucléaire (nuclear physics institute) was opened in the Chevreuse valley, and the region, especially Orsay, became an important scientific centre. Another development was the creation of the Université de Paris-Sud, whose most important faculty is the faculty of science.