A stronghold defended by Vercingetorix and the Gallic coalition, Alesia was the location of a decisive military action during the Gallic Wars in 52 BCE, won by Julius Caesar.

In the 19th century, the location of this stronghold was the subject of much debate. Excavations carried out by the Commission de Topographie des Gaules between 1861 and 1862 made it possible to locate the site at Alise-Sainte-Reine (Côte-d’Or).