1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Chesnelong, Pierre Charles

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CHESNELONG, PIERRE CHARLES (1820-1894), French politician, was born at Orthez in the department of the Basses-Pyrénées, on the 14th of April 1820. In 1848 he proclaimed himself a Republican; but after the establishment of the Second Empire he changed his views, and in 1865 was returned to the chamber as the official candidate for his native place. He at once became conspicuous, both for his eloquence and for his uncompromising clericalism, especially in urging the necessity for maintaining the temporal power of the papacy. In 1869 he was again returned, and, devoting himself with exceptional ability to financial questions, was in 1870 appointed to report the budget. During and after the war, for which he voted, he retired for a while into private life; but in 1872 he was again elected deputy, this time as a Legitimist, and took his seat among the extreme Right. He was the soul of the reactionary opposition that led to the fall of Thiers; and in 1873 it was he Who, with Lucien Brun, carried to the Comte de Chambord the proposals of the chambers. Through some misunderstanding, he reported on his return that the count had accepted all the terms offered, including the retention of the tricolour Hag; and the count published a formal denial. Chesnelong now devoted himself to the establishment of Catholic universities and to the formation of Catholic working-men's clubs. In 1876 he was again returned for Orthez, but was unseated, and then beaten by the republican candidate. On the 24th of November, however, he was elected to a seat in the senate, where he continued his vigorous polemic against the progressive attempts of the republican government to secularize the educational system of France until his death in 1894.