.mw-parser-output .hidden-begin{box-sizing:border-box;width:100%;padding:5px;border:none;font-size:95%}.mw-parser-output .hidden-title{font-weight:bold;line-height:1.6;text-align:left}.mw-parser-output .hidden-content{text-align:left}@media all and (max-width:500px){.mw-parser-output .hidden-begin{width:auto!important;clear:none!important;float:none!important))You can help expand this article with text translated from the corresponding article in French. (May 2022) Click [show] for important translation instructions. View a machine-translated version of the French article. Machine translation, like DeepL or Google Translate, is a useful starting point for translations, but translators must revise errors as necessary and confirm that the translation is accurate, rather than simply copy-pasting machine-translated text into the English Wikipedia. Consider adding a topic to this template: there are already 6,178 articles in the main category, and specifying|topic= will aid in categorization. Do not translate text that appears unreliable or low-quality. If possible, verify the text with references provided in the foreign-language article. You must provide copyright attribution in the edit summary accompanying your translation by providing an interlanguage link to the source of your translation. A model attribution edit summary is Content in this edit is translated from the existing French Wikipedia article at [[:fr:Brayons (Canada)]]; see its history for attribution. You may also add the template ((Translated|fr|Brayons (Canada))) to the talk page. For more guidance, see Wikipedia:Translation.
Brayon, Brayonne
Regions with significant populations
Canada, concentrated in the Madawaska region of New Brunswick.
French (maternal language), English (as a second language)
Primarily Roman Catholic
Related ethnic groups
French, Québécois, Acadians, Cajun, French-speaking Quebecer, Franco-Ontarian, Franco-Manitoban, French American

Brayons (/brˈjɒ̃/; French pronunciation: [bʁɛjɔ̃]), also called Madawaskayens, are a Francophone people inhabiting the area in and around Madawaska County, New Brunswick, Canada, and some parts of northern Maine.

In French, Brayons are referred to by the masculine les Brayons or the feminine les Brayonnes. They speak with a French accent also known as "Brayon".


"Brayon" used to be written as "Breillon".[1][2] The origins of the word are not well known. It is hypothesized to have perhaps been derived from the verb "Brayer" (to pull on a rope), the noun "Braie" ("old clothes" in certain dialects of the West of France), or the verb "Broyer" (to crush; the inhabitants of the region used to crush flax).


Given their location in New Brunswick, and that most Brayons descend from Acadians who escaped the deportation of the Acadians, they are considered by many to be Acadians. However, some residents relate more to Quebec and have strong roots and ancestral ties to Quebec.

Brayons therefore formed a distinctive culture with a history and heritage linked to farming and forestry in the Madawaska area, unlike both the primarily maritime heritage of the modern Acadians and the St. Lawrence Valley history of the Québécois.[3]


Historically, the formal borders between New Brunswick and Quebec, and to some extent Maine, did not matter much to the people of the area. This caused blending and commonalities and close relationships between people in the area, whether Acadian or Québécois or people from parts of northern Maine, forming a Brayon identity.

This Madawaska region was part of a border dispute and was claimed by Quebec when it was called Lower Canada.

The view of uniqueness led (at least jokingly) to the founding of the République du Madawaska during the Aroostook War of 1838, wherein some Brayons, disgusted with the actions of both British and American interlopers on their historical lands, declared themselves allied with neither and independent.[4] The république was never formally recognized and was ultimately split by the Webster-Ashburton Treaty into American and Canadian parts.[5][6]

Brayon French is not completely restricted to Madawaska County.

Other uses

Brayon(ne) is also the name of the inhabitants of the Pays de Bray in northwestern France (Normandy, Seine-Maritime département and Picardy, Oise département).


  1. ^ Yves Cormier, Dictionnaire du français acadien, Fides, 2009 (ISBN 978-2-7621-3010-2), p. 110.
  2. ^ Yves Cormier, Dictionnaire du français acadien, Fides, 2009 (ISBN 978-2-7621-3010-2), p. 109.
  3. ^ "La brayonnité, la brayonnité?!? référence madawaskayenne en chantier, 1785-2014" [Brayonnité, brayonnité?!? Madawaskayan reference in progress, 1785–2014]. Acadiensis (in French). 44 (1): 64–90. Spring 2015. Retrieved 29 December 2022.
  4. ^ "La petite histoire de la République du Madawaska" [The short history of the Republic of Madawaska]. Infoweekend (in French). Postmedia Network. 25 July 2016. Retrieved 29 December 2022.
  5. ^ Couturier, Jacques Paul (2002). "La République du Madawaska et l'Acadie. La construction identitaire d'une région néo-brunswickoise au xxe siècle" [The Republic of Madawaska and Acadie – The identity construction of a New Brunswick Region in the 20th century]. Revue d'histoire de l'Amérique française (in French). 56 (2): 153–184.
  6. ^ Volpé, Philippe (2015). "La brayonnité, la brayonnité ?!?: référence madawaskayenne en chantier, 1785-2014" [Brayonnité, brayonnité?!? Madawaskayan reference in progress, 1785–2014]. Acadiensis (in French). 44 (1): 64–90.