Leclerc, Charles Victor Emmanuel (shärl vēktôrˈ ĕmänüĕlˈ ləklĕrˈ) [key], 1772–1802, French general. He served under Napoleon Bonaparte in the Italian campaign, married (1797) Pauline Bonaparte, and took part in Napoleon's coup of 18 Brumaire (1799). In 1801 he commanded the French expedition to Portugal. He then headed the force sent to subdue Haiti, where François Dominique Toussaint L'Ouverture had established a virtually autonomous state. The French won several victories after severe fighting, and an agreement was reached. This was broken by Leclerc, who, acting on Napoleon's secret instructions, had Toussaint seized by trickery and deported to France. The natives, led by Jean Jacques Dessalines and Henri Christophe, rose in revolt and expelled the French, who were weakened by an epidemic of yellow fever. Leclerc died of the fever.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.