Freycinet, Charles de

Freycinet, Charles de

(shärl də frāsēnā`), 1828–1923, French statesman. A mining engineer, he helped Léon GambettaGambetta, Léon
, 1838–82, French republican leader. A lawyer who achieved some note as an opponent of the Second Empire of Napoleon III, he was elected deputy in 1869 and joined the parliamentary opposition.
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 organize resistance to the Germans during the Franco-Prussian War (1870–71). Later he was elected (1876) to the senate. He repeatedly held cabinet posts—public works, foreign affairs, and war—and was four times premier. As minister of public works, he proposed a massive program to construct new railroads, highways, and canals. In the war ministry he extended (1889) military service to three years.
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