Nancy is a city in the north-eastern French department of Meurthe-et-Moselle, and formerly the capital of the Duchy of Lorraine, and then the French province of the same name. Place Stanislas, a large square built between March 1752 and November 1755 by Stanislaw I to link the medieval old town of Nancy and the new town built under Charles III in the 17th century, is an UNESCO World Heritage Site.The city is the head of the department. The metropolitan area of Nancy had a population of 410,509 inhabitants at the 1999 census, 103,602 of whom lived in the city of Nancy proper .The motto of the city is Non inultus premor, Latin for "I'm not touched with impunity"—a reference to the thistle, which is a symbol of Lorraine.HistoryThe earliest signs of human settlement in the area date back to 800 BC. Early settlers were likely attracted by easily mined iron ore and a ford in the Meurthe River. A small fortified town named Nanciacum (Nancy) was built by Gerard, Duke of Lorraine around 1050.Nancy was burned in 1218 at the end of the War of Succession of Champagne, and conquered by Emperor Frederick II, then rebuilt in stone over the next few centuries as it grew in importance as the Capital of the Duchy of Lorraine. Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, was defeated and killed in the Battle of Nancy in 1477.