Freycinet, Charles de

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Charles de Freycinet (shärl də frāsēnā´), 1828–1923, French statesman. A mining engineer, he helped Léon Gambetta 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.