Modern era

In 1526, the suzerainty of the Artois region, that was still part of the kingdom of France, passed over to the king of Spain.

The Thirty Years War was particularly destructive. Lens 1647The Town was taken and retaken, pillaged, destroyed by belligerent armies from the French and then from the Spanish in turn. Lens gave its name to the great battle that was won by the Prince de Condé over the Spanish on 20th August 1648. This battle brought the Thirty Years War to an end and furnished elements for Boileau's famous words: "This is the place, Grand Condé, where the famous battle was fought and where your arm caused the Rhine, the Escaut and the Ebre to tremble…". And then, in his eulogy for the Prince de Condé, Bossuet recalled: "Lens, a name that is agreeable to French ears… ”. Later, Lens gave the name of Grand Condé to one of its mining towns on the road to Lille. The Pyrenees treaty consolidated this victory in 1659 by ensuring the supremacy of France in the Artois region.