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Calais is a city in north-west France, in the département of Pas-de-Calais, of which it is a sous-préfecture. Population 80,000.

Situated at the Strait of Dover, the city is major harbour, with among others ferry connections with Dover and other English towns. The French end of the Channel Tunnel is also situated in the vicinity of Calais, in Sangatte[?]. There is a large shopping complex targeted at the British market, viable particularly since various items (such as cigarettes and alcoholic beverages) are cheaper in France for tax reasons. Such day trippers are colloquially known as "booze cruisers".

The main square features a copy of the statue The Burghers of Calais (French Les Bourgeois de Calais), by Auguste Rodin.

When the meter was originally defined in terms of the size of the Earth, it was based on the distance from Calais to Perpignan. This is close to the longest north-south line segment within France.

On January 7, 1558 France tooke back Calais from England. Calais was the last continental possession of England.

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