1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Ushant
USHANT (Fr. Ouessant), the most westerly of the islands off the coast of France, about 14 m. from the coast of Finistère, of which department it forms a canton and commune. Pop. (1906) 2761. Ushant is about 3850 acres in extent and almost entirely granitic, with steep and rugged coasts accessible only at a few points, and rendered more dangerous by the frequency of fogs. The island affords pasturage to a breed of small black sheep, and about half its area is occupied by cereals or potatoes. The male inhabitants are principally pilots and fishermen, the women working in the fields. Ushant was ravaged by the English in 1388. The lordship was made a marquisate in 1597 in favour of René de Rieux de Sourdéac, governor of Brest. In 1778 a naval action without decisive result was fought off Ushant between the English under Keppel and the French under the Count d'Orvilliers.