Loir-Et-Cher, a central department of France, including a large part of the old province of Orleanais and a small portion of Tou-raine, bordering on the departments of Eure-et-Loire, Loiret, Cher, Indre, Indre-et-Loire, and Sarthe; area, 2,452 sq. m.; pop. in 1872, 268,801. The surface presents a number of elevated and extensive plains, and is nearly equally divided by the Loire, the district N. of which is traversed by the Loir and its affluent the Brave, and that S. by the Cher, Sauldre, Beuvron, and Cosson. The S. E. of the department presents a vast marshy plain which contains many hundreds of ponds. The soil is of various qualities: in the N. E. it is a dark rich loam, in the S. E. clay and sand, along the Cher calcareous, and the N. W. part is arid and covered with heath. The chalk formation occupies a large portion of the department. The chief crops are grain, wine, fruits, vegetables, beet root, and hemp. Ven-dome is noted for its draught horses, and the Sologne district for its sheep. The climate is in general mild and salubrious excepting in the marshy S. region, where malaria prevails, and where the population is in a wretched condition. The manufactures consist of coarse woollens, cotton cloth, hosiery, gloves, sugar, leather, glass, and earthenware.
It is divided into the arrondissements of Blois, Romorantin, and Vendome. Capital, Blois.