Barthou, Louis (lwē bärtōˈ) [key], 1862–1934, French cabinet minister and man of letters. He held portfolios in numerous cabinets after 1894 and was briefly premier in July–Aug., 1913. His government was responsible for the law that increased military service from two to three years. In 1934 he became foreign minister in the cabinet of Gaston Doumergue. Barthou sought to strengthen the French position in Eastern Europe. He was welcoming King Alexander of Yugoslavia at Marseilles when a Croatian nationalist assassinated (Oct., 1934) both the king and Barthou. A man of culture and learning, Barthou was the author of several biographies, notably one of Victor Hugo (tr. 1919).
See A. Roberts, The Turning Point (1970).
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