Picquart, Georges

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Georges Picquart (zhôrzh pēkär´), 1854–1914, French general. As chief of the army intelligence section in 1896, he discovered that the memorandum that had been used to convict Captain Dreyfus (see Dreyfus Affair) had probably been the work of Ferdinand Walsin Esterhazy. Higher officials warned Picquart to conceal his discovery; he persisted and was sent (Dec., 1896) to Tunis and demoted. After the trial of Émile Zola, Picquart was accused of forging the note that had convinced him of Esterhazy's guilt. He was dismissed from the service and arrested for forgery. The exoneration of Dreyfus in 1906 also served to absolve Picquart, who was promoted to general and entered Georges Clemenceau's cabinet as minister of war.