City (pop., 2006 est.: 209,613), western France. Located at the confluence of the Ille and Vilaine rivers, Rennes was once under Roman occupation. It was the capital of Brittany in the Middle Ages and a rival of Nantes. It was the seat of the Brittany parliament from 1561 to 1675. Rennes was almost completely destroyed by fire in 1720 and was rebuilt. It was bombed and partly destroyed in World War II. It is a commercial and industrial city, producing railway equipment, automobiles, and chemicals. It is also the cultural centre of Brittany.