Poincaré, Raymond

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Poincaré, Raymond

(rāmôN` pwăNkärā`), 1860–1934, French statesman, president of France (1913–20); cousin of Jules Henri PoincaréPoincaré, Jules Henri
, 1854–1912, French mathematician, physicist, and author. He was from 1881 connected with the faculty of sciences at the Univ. of Paris.
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. A member of the chamber of deputies from 1887, he held numerous cabinet posts from 1893 to 1906. In 1912 he became premier and foreign minister, and in 1913 he was elected to succeed Armand FallièresFallières, Armand
, 1841–1931, president of the French republic (1906–13). A lawyer, he became a member of the chamber of deputies in 1876. He was a member of various cabinets from 1882 to 1892, served briefly as premier, and was also president of the senate.
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 as president. A conservative and a nationalist, he proceeded to strengthen France to face possible hostilities. A bill increasing military service to three years was passed, and French alliances with Great Britain and Russia were tightened. During World War I, Poincaré called on (1917) Georges ClemenceauClemenceau, Georges
, 1841–1929, French political figure, twice premier (1906–9, 1917–20), called "the Tiger." He was trained as a doctor, but his republicanism brought him into conflict with the government of Napoleon III, and he went to the United States,
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 to form a new cabinet, despite his personal hatred of the man. After the war Poincaré called for harsh punishment of Germany and for adequate guarantees of French security. He regarded the Treaty of Versailles as too lenient. On completing his presidential term, Poincaré returned to the senate, which he had entered first in 1903, and became a leader of the bloc national, a coalition of conservative parties. This brought him again to the premiership and the ministry of foreign affairs in 1922. In the face of Germany's failure to pay the heavy reparations assigned by the peace treaty, Poincaré sent French troops to occupy the RuhrRuhr
, region, c.1,300 sq mi (3,370 sq km), North Rhine–Westphalia, W Germany; a principal manufacturing center of Germany. The Ruhr lies along, and north of, the Ruhr River (145 mi/233 km long), which rises in the hills of central Germany and flows generally west to the
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 in 1923. He failed, however, to coerce Germany into paying its reparations, and in May, 1924, he was forced to resign following the conservatives' defeat in the general elections. Financial crisis returned him to office in 1926. He retained Aristide BriandBriand, Aristide
, 1862–1932, French statesman. A lawyer and a Socialist, he entered (1902) the chamber of deputies and helped to draft and pass the law (1905) for separation of church and state.
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, who supported cooperation with Germany, as his foreign minister. To deal with the financial situation, Poincaré pursued an extreme deflationary policy, balancing the budget and securing (1928) the stabilization of the franc at one fifth of its former value. He retired from office in 1929 but continued to preach the need for security and to proclaim his opposition to treaty revision. Among Poincaré's writings are How France Is Governed (tr. 1919) and his memoirs (tr. 1926).


See S. Huddleston, Poincaré (1924); G. Wright, Poincaré and the French Presidency (1942, repr. 1967).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Poincaré, Raymond


Born Aug. 20, 1860, in Bar-le-Duc, Meuse; died Oct. 15, 1934, in Paris. French political figure and statesman; a lawyer. Member of the Académie Française from 1909.

Poincaré was a deputy of the French Parliament from 1887 to 1903 and a senator from 1903 to 1913 and from 1920. He was minister of education in 1893 and 1895 and minister of finance in 1894 and 1895 and in 1906. He was prime minister and minister of foreign affairs from 1912 to January 1913. From 1913 to January 1920 he was president of the Republic.

Poincaré represented the interests of the large bourgeoisie. He hindered the passage of social reforms and intensified preparations for war. In 1913 he succeeded in lengthening the period of military service to three years. Poincaré was in favor of strengthening the Entente and the alliance with tsarist Russia, which he visited officially in 1912 and 1914.

During World War I (1914–18), Poincaré was determined to continue the war until victory. After the war, he attempted to establish French hegemony in Europe. In 1920 he was chairman of the reparations commission.

One of the organizers of intervention against Soviet Russia, he defended the interests of the propertied French in Russia and of the holders of Russian loans.

From 1922 to 1924, Poincaré was prime minister and minister of foreign affairs. In an attempt to increase the power of France in Europe, he sent troops to occupy the Ruhr in 1923. Between 1926 and 1929 he was again prime minister and, until November 1928, the minister of finance. He was also one of the leaders of the nationalists.

Poincaré was forced to retire from politics because of ill health.


Au Service de la France, vols. 1–10. Paris [1926–33]. In Russian translation: Na sluzhbe Frantsii, vols. 1–2. Moscow, 1936.


Lenin, V. I. “Znachenie izbraniia Puankare.” Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 22.
Chastenet, J. Raymond Poincaré. Paris, 1948.
Miquel, P. Poincaré. Paris [1961].
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.