Marianne is a national symbol of the French Republic, a personification of liberty and reason, a portrayal of the Goddess of Liberty. Marianne is displayed in many places in France and holds a place of honour in town halls and law courts, she symbolizes the Triumph of the Republic, a bronze sculpture overlooking the Place de la Nation in Paris, is represented with another Parisian statue in the Place de la République. Her profile stands out on the official government logo of the country, is engraved on French euro coins and appears on French postage stamps. Marianne is one of the most prominent symbols of the French Republic, is used on most government documents. Marianne is a significant republican symbol; as a national icon she represents opposition to monarchy and the championship of freedom and democracy against all forms of oppression. Other national symbols of France include the tricolor flag, the national motto Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité, the national anthem "La Marseillaise", the coat of arms, the official Great Seal of France.
In classical times it was common to represent ideas and abstract entities by gods and allegorical personifications. Less common during the Middle Ages, this practice resurfaced during the Renaissance. During the French Revolution of 1789, many allegorical personifications of'Liberty' and'Reason' appeared; these two figures merged into one: a female figure, shown either sitting or standing, accompanied by various attributes, including the tricolor cockade and the Phrygian cap. This woman symbolised Liberty, the Nation, the Homeland, the civic virtues of the Republic. In September 1792, the National Convention decided by decree that the new seal of the state would represent a standing woman holding a spear with a Phrygian cap held aloft on top of it. Historian Maurice Agulhon, who in several well-known works set out on a detailed investigation to discover the origins of Marianne, suggests that it is the traditions and mentality of the French that led to the use of a woman to represent the Republic.
A feminine allegory was a manner to symbolise the breaking with the old monarchy headed by kings, promote modern republican ideology. Before the French Revolution, the Kingdom of France was embodied in masculine figures, as depicted in certain ceilings of Palace of Versailles. Furthermore and the Republic themselves are, in French, feminine nouns, as are the French nouns for liberty and reason; the use of this emblem was unofficial and diverse. A female allegory of Liberty and of the Republic makes an appearance in Eugène Delacroix's painting Liberty Leading the People, painted in July 1830 in honour of the Three Glorious Days. Although the image of Marianne did not garner significant attention until 1792, the origins of this "goddess of Liberty" date back to 1775, when Jean-Michel Moreau painted her as a young woman dressed in Roman style clothing with a Phrygian cap atop a pike held in one hand that years would become a national symbol across France. Marianne made her first major appearance in the French spotlight on a medal in July 1789, celebrating the storming of the Bastille and other early events of the Revolution.
From this time until September 1792, the image of Marianne was overshadowed by other figures such as Mercury and Minerva. It was not until September 1792 when the new Republic sought a new image to represent the State that her popularity began to expand. Marianne, the female allegory of Liberty, was chosen to represent the new regime of the French Republic, while remaining to symbolise liberty at the same time; the imagery of Marianne chosen as the seal of the First French Republic depicted her standing and determined. It was a newly created state that had much to prove. Marianne is clad in a classical gown. In her right hand, she wields the pike of revolution with the Phrygian cap resting on it, which represents the liberation of France. Marianne is shown leaning on a symbol of authority. Although she is standing and holding a pike, this depiction of Marianne is "not aggressive", representing the ideology of the moderate-liberal Girondins in the National Convention as they tried to move away from the "frantic violence of the revolutionary days".
Although the initial figure of Marianne from 1792 stood in a conservative pose, the revolutionaries were quick to abandon that figure when it no longer suited them. By 1793, the conservative figure of Marianne had been replaced by a more violent image; the reason behind this switch stems from the shifting priorities of the Republic. Although the Marianne symbol was neutral in tone, the shift to radical action was in response to the beginning of the Terror, which called for militant revolutionary action against foreigners and counter-revolutionaries; as part of the tactics the administration employed, the more radical Marianne was intended to rouse the French people to action. This change, was seen to be insufficiently radical by the republicans. After the arrest of the Girondin deputies in October 1793, the Convention sought to "recast the Republic in a more radical mold" using the symbol of Hercules to represent the Republic; the use of radical images to symbolise the Republic was in direct parallel to the beginning of the violence that came to be known as the Reign of T
First day of issue
A first day of issue cover or first day cover is a postage stamp on a cover, postal card or stamped envelope franked on the first day the issue is authorized for use within the country or territory of the stamp-issuing authority. Sometimes the issue is made from a permanent foreign or overseas office. Covers that are postmarked at sea or their next port of call will carry a Paquebot postmark. There will be a first day of issue postmark a pictorial cancellation, indicating the city and date where the item was first issued, "first day of issue" is used to refer to this postmark. Depending on the policy of the nation issuing the stamp, official first day postmarks may sometimes be applied to covers weeks or months after the date indicated. Postal authorities may hold a first day ceremony to generate publicity for the new issue, with postal officials revealing the stamp, with connected persons in attendance, such as descendants of the person being honored by the stamp; the ceremony may be held in a location that has a special connection with the stamp's subject, such as the birthplace of a social movement, or at a stamp show.
Prior to 1840, postage costs were high and they were paid by the person who received the mail. The cost was measured by how far the letter had to go. Sometimes this amounted to a considerable sum. Sir Rowland Hill calculated that the cost to the Post Office was far less than what some people were paying to send/receive their mail. Hill believed that sending mail should be affordable to all so proposed that postage should be pre-paid, based on the weight rather than the number of sheets and the cost should be drastically reduced. On 10 January 1840 a Uniform 1d postmark was released which allowed a universal penny postage rate, this was a postmark, paid and was applied when the letter was sent, it was decided that an adhesive label should be used to prevent forgeries and mis-use of the postal service and the Penny Black stamp was born. The stamp was covered a letter up to 14 grams in weight, it was released for sale on 6 May 1840 however, several post offices that received the stamps prior to that date released the stamps early.
The City of Bath is known for releasing the stamps on 2 May 1840. Here began the first First Day Covers. Event covers known as commemorative covers, instead of marking the issuance of a stamp, commemorate events. A design on the left side of the envelope explains the anniversary being celebrated. Ideally the stamp or stamps affixed relate to the event. Cancels are obtained either from the location or, in the case of the United States, from the Postal Service's Cancellation Services unit in Kansas City. Philatelic covers are envelope prepared with a stamp and sent through the mail delivery system to create a collectible item. Information about philatelic covers is available online in catalogs and collector websites. Computer vended postage stamps issued by Neopost had first-day-of-issue ceremonies sponsored by the company, not by an official stamp-issuing entity. Personalised postage stamps of different designs are sometimes given first-day-of-issue ceremonies and cancellations by the private designer.
The stamps issued by private local posts can have first days of issue, as can artistamps. The postmark is one of the most important features of a cover. Stamps are cancelled by a postmark, which shows they have been used and can’t be re-used to send a letter. Circular Date Stamps are the'bread-and-butter' postmarks used on everyday mail by Post Office counters across the UK. A CDS postmark is straight forward and only features the town’s name and the date. There is no picture, it you wanted to use a CDS postmark because the town is relevant to the stamp issue, you would have to go to the town’s local Post Office to get it. On a cover, the postmark should link them to the envelope. Postmarks came to the foreground in the early 1960s, when collectors started to demand more interesting cancellations on their first day covers. For the Red Cross issue in 1963, a special Florence Nightingale cover was posted at her birthplace, West Wellow; the Botanical Conference issue of 1964 featured primroses on the stamps, so one clever cover dealer posted his covers at Primrose Valley.
This kind of relevant postmark made a cover worth ten times more than the same cover with a standard postmark issued by the Philatelic Bureau at Edinburgh. In the US, the U. S. Postal Service chooses several, as ` official' first day cities; these have a special connection to the stamp issue being released, these postmarks are the only ones that have the wording:'First Day of Issue' With postmarks becoming more and more important to the covers, pictorial postmarks became popular. Pictorial postmarks are known as Special Handstamps/Postmarks. In 1924 The first commemorative set of stamps for the British Empire Exhibition had both special postmarks and a special slogan, but it was not until the late 1960s/early 1970s that dealers and organisations caught on that you could sponsor/design a connected postmark and it would make an ordinary cover something special; these days anyone can sponsor a postmark. They need to design the postmark, get it approved by Royal Mail and pay a fee; the postmark becomes the property of Royal Mail and anyone is allowed to use it on their covers.
This means other people's postmarks. However, to be an “official” cover, a postmark has to be on the cover produced by the organisation that sponsored the post
Ève Luquet is a stamp designer and engraver. She had been designing stamps for the Andorran French post and France since 1986. Luquet graduated in 1981 from the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts of Paris, where she learned the art of engraving with stamp engraver Jacques Jubert, she engraves landscapes and monuments. In 1995, Luquet was awarded the French Grand Prix de l'art philatélique for a stamp representing the bridge of Nyons; the issue of Marianne du 14 Juillet series on July 15, 1997 was the first definitive stamp series for France to be created by a woman
The Phrygian cap or liberty cap is a soft conical cap with the apex bent over, associated in antiquity with several peoples in Eastern Europe and Anatolia, including Phrygia and the Balkans. In early modern Europe it came to signify freedom and the pursuit of liberty through a confusion with the pileus, the felt cap of manumitted slaves of ancient Rome. In artistic representations it signifies the pursuit of liberty, it is used in the coat of arms of certain republics or of republican state institutions in the place where otherwise a crown would be used. It thus came to be identified as a symbol of the republican form of government. A number of national personifications, in particular France's Marianne, are depicted wearing the Phrygian cap. By the 4th century BC the Phrygian cap was associated with Phrygian Attis, the consort of Cybele, the cult of which had by become graecified. At around the same time, the cap appears in depictions of the legendary king Midas and other Phrygians in Greek vase-paintings and sculpture.
Such images predate the earliest surviving literary references to the cap. By extension, the Phrygian cap came to be applied to several other non-Greek-speaking peoples as well. Most notable of these extended senses of "Phrygian" were the Trojans and other western Anatolian peoples, who in Greek perception were synonymous with the Phrygians, whose heroes Paris and Ganymede were all depicted with a Phrygian cap. Other Greek earthenware of antiquity depict Amazons and so-called "Scythian" archers with Phrygian caps. Although these are military depictions, the headgear is distinguished from "Phrygian helmets" by long ear flaps, the figures are identified as "barbarians" by their trousers; the headgear appears in 2nd-century BC Boeotian Tanagra figurines of an effeminate Eros, in various 1st-century BC statuary of the Commagene, in eastern Anatolia. Greek representations of Thracians regularly appear with Phrygian caps, most notably Bendis, the Thracian goddess of the moon and the hunt, Orpheus, a legendary Thracian poet and musician.
While the Phrygian cap was of wool or soft leather, in pre-Hellenistic times the Greeks had developed a military helmet that had a characteristic flipped-over tip. These so-called "Phrygian helmets" were of bronze and in prominent use in Thrace, Magna Graecia and the rest of the Hellenistic world from the 5th century BC up to Roman times. Due to their superficial similarity, the cap and helmet are difficult to distinguish in Greek art unless the headgear is identified as a soft flexible cap by long earflaps or a long neck flap. Confusingly similar are the depictions of the helmets used by cavalry and light infantry, whose headgear – aside from the traditional alopekis caps of fox skin – included stiff leather helmets in imitation of the bronze ones; the Greek concept passed to the Romans in its extended sense, thus encompassed not only to Phrygians or Trojans, but the other near-neighbours of the Greeks. On Trajan's Column, which commemorated Trajan's epic wars with the Dacians, the Phrygian cap adorns the heads of Trajan's Dacian prisoners.
The prisoner, accompanying Trajan in the monumental, 3 m tall statue of Trajan in the ancient Turkish city of Laodicea, is wearing a Phrygian Cap. Parthians appear with Phrygian caps in the 2nd-century Arch of Septimius Severus, which commemorates Roman victories over the Parthian Empire. With Phrygians caps, but for Gauls, appear in 2nd-century friezes built into the 4th century Arch of Constantine; the Phrygian cap reappears in figures related to the first to fourth century religion Mithraism. This astrology-centric Roman mystery cult projected itself with pseudo-Oriental trappings in order to distinguish itself from both traditional Roman religion and from the other mystery cults. In the artwork of the cult, the figures of the god Mithras as well as those of his helpers Cautes and Cautopates are depicted with a Phrygian cap; the function of the Phrygian cap in the cult are unknown, but it is conventionally identified as an accessory of its perserie. Early Christian art build on the same Greco-Roman perceptions of Zoroaster and his "Magi" as experts in the arts of astrology and magic, depict the "three wise men" with Phrygian caps.
In late Republican Rome, a soft felt cap called the pileus served as a symbol of freemen, was symbolically given to slaves upon manumission, thereby granting them not only their personal liberty, but libertas— freedom as citizens, with the right to vote. Following the assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 BC, Brutus and his co-conspirators instrumentalized this symbolism of the pileus to signify the end of Caesar's dictatorship and a return to the republican system; these Roman associations of the pileus with liberty and republicanism were carried forward to the 18th-century, when the pileus was confused with the Phrygian cap, with the Phrygian cap becoming a symbol of those values. In revolutionary FranceIn 1675, the anti-tax and anti-nobility Stamp-Paper revolt erupted in Brittany and north-western France, where it became known as the bonnets rouges uprising after the blue or red caps worn by the insurgents. Although the insurgents are not known to have preferr
Mayotte is an overseas department and region of France named the Department of Mayotte. It consists of a main island, Grande-Terre, a smaller island, Petite-Terre, several islets around these two. Mayotte is part of the Comoros archipelago, located in the northern Mozambique Channel in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Southeast Africa, between northwestern Madagascar and northeastern Mozambique; the department status of Mayotte is recent and the region remains, by a significant margin, the poorest in France. Mayotte is much more prosperous than the other countries of the Mozambique Channel, making it a major destination for illegal immigration. Mayotte's area is 374 square kilometres and, with its 270,372 people according to January 2019 official estimates, is densely populated at 723 per km2; the biggest city and prefecture is Mamoudzou on Grande-Terre. However, the Dzaoudzi–Pamandzi International Airport is located on the neighbouring island of Petite-Terre; the territory is known as Maore, the native name of its main island by advocates of its inclusion in the Union of the Comoros.
Although, as a department, Mayotte is now an integral part of France, the majority of the inhabitants do not speak French as a first language, but a majority of the people 14 years and older report in the census that they can speak French. The language of the majority is Shimaore, a Sabaki language related to the varieties in the neighbouring Comoros islands; the second most spoken native language is Kibushi, a Malagasy language, of which there are two varieties, Kibushi Kisakalava, most related to the Sakalava dialect of Malagasy, Kibushi Kiantalaotra. Both have been influenced by Shimaore; the vast majority of the population is Muslim. The island was populated from neighbouring East Africa with arrival of Arabs, who brought Islam. A sultanate was established in 1500. In the 19th century, Mayotte was conquered by Andriantsoly, former king of Iboina on Madagascar, by the neighbouring islands Mohéli and Anjouan before being purchased by France in 1841; the people of Mayotte voted to remain politically a part of France in the 1974 referendum on the independence of the Comoros.
Mayotte became an overseas department on 31 March 2011 and became an outermost region of the European Union on 1 January 2014, following a 2009 referendum with an overwhelming result in favour of the department status. The term Mayotte may refer to all of the department's islands, of which the largest is known as Maore and includes Maore's surrounding islands, most notably Pamanzi, or only to the largest island; the main island, Grande-Terre, geologically the oldest of the Comoro Islands, is 39 kilometres long and 22 kilometres wide, its highest point is Mount Benara, at 660 metres above sea level. Because of the volcanic rock, the soil is rich in some areas. A coral reef encircling much of the island ensures a habitat for fish. Dzaoudzi was the capital of Mayotte until 1977, when the capital relocated at Mamoudzou on the main island of Grande-Terre, it is situated on Petite-Terre, which at 10 square kilometres is the largest of several islets adjacent to Maore. The area of the lagoon behind the reef is 1,500 square kilometres,reaching a maximum depth of about 80m.
It is described as "the largest barrier-reef-lagoon complex within the southwestern Indian Ocean". Main article: Geology of Mayotte Mayotte is a volcanic island rising steeply from the bed of the ocean to a height of 660 metres on Mont Bénara. Two volcanic centres are reported, a southern one (Pic Chongui, 594 metres, with a breached crater to the NW, a northern centre with a breached crater to the south-east. Mont Bénara is on the curving ridge between these two peaks at the contact point of the two structures. Volcanic activity started about 7.7 million years ago in the south, ceasing about 2.7 million years ago. In the north, activity started about 4.7 million years ago and lasted until about 1.4 million years ago. Both centres had several phases of activity; the November 11 2018 seismic event occurred about 15 miles off the coast of Mayotte. It was recorded by seismograms in many place including Kenya, New Zealand and Hawaii located 11,000 miles away; the seismic waves lasted for over 20 minutes but despite this, no one felt it.
The exact nature of the forces behind this swarm remain unclear at this time. The French government geological agency, the BRGM are maintaining a website on the events at this link; the leading theory is about magma emplacement into the seabed and a partial collase of the magma chamber's roof, but, still under debate. A set of seabed seismic recorders was put into the ocean in February 2019, for retrieval in about September that year, which should give better earthquake locations and directional "solutions". Mayotte is surrounded by a typical tropical coral reef, it consists in a large outer barrier reef, enclosing one of the world's largest and deepest lagoons, followed by a fringing reef, interrupted by many mangroves. All Mayotte waters are ruled by a National marine Park, many places are natural reserves. In 1500, the Maore or Mawuti (contraction of the Arabic جزيرة الموت Jazīrat al-Mawt – meaning isl
Martinique is an insular region of France located in the Lesser Antilles of the West Indies in the eastern Caribbean Sea, with a land area of 1,128 square kilometres and a population of 376,480 inhabitants as of January 2016. Like Guadeloupe, it is an overseas region of France, consisting of a single overseas department. One of the Windward Islands, it is directly north of Saint Lucia, southeast of Greater Antilles, northwest of Barbados, south of Dominica; as with the other overseas departments, Martinique is one of the eighteen regions of France and an integral part of the French Republic. As part of France, Martinique is part of the European Union, its currency is the euro; the official language is French, the entire population speaks Antillean Creole. Christopher Columbus landed on 15 June 1502, after a 21-day trade wind passage, his fastest ocean voyage, he spent three days there refilling his water casks and washing laundry. The island was called "Jouanacaëra-Matinino", which came from a mythical island described by the Taínos of Hispaniola.
According to historian Sydney Daney, the island was called "Jouanacaëra" by the Caribs, which means "the island of iguanas". When Columbus landed on the island in 1502, he christened the island as Martinica; the island is called "Madinina" by the locals. The island was occupied first by Arawaks by Caribs; the Carib people had migrated from the mainland to the islands about 1201 CE, according to carbon dating of artifacts. They were displaced and assimilated by the Taino, who were resident on the island in the 1490s. Martinique was charted by Columbus in 1493. On 15 September 1635, Pierre Belain d'Esnambuc, French governor of the island of St. Kitts, landed in the harbor of St. Pierre with 150 French settlers after being driven off St. Kitts by the English. D'Esnambuc claimed Martinique for the French King Louis XIII and the French "Compagnie des Îles de l'Amérique", established the first European settlement at Fort Saint-Pierre. D'Esnambuc died in 1636, leaving the company and Martinique in the hands of his nephew, Jacques Dyel du Parquet, who in 1637, became governor of the island.
In 1636, the indigenous Caribs rose against the settlers to drive them off the island in the first of many skirmishes. The French repelled the natives and forced them to retreat to the eastern part of the island, on the Caravelle Peninsula in the region known as the Capesterre; when the Carib revolted against French rule in 1658, the Governor Charles Houël du Petit Pré retaliated with war against them. Many were killed; some Carib had fled to St. Vincent, where the French agreed to leave them at peace; because there were few Catholic priests in the French Antilles, many of the earliest French settlers were Huguenots who sought greater religious freedom than what they could experience in mainland France. They became quite prosperous. Although edicts from King Louis XIV's court came to the islands to suppress the Protestant "heretics", these were ignored by island authorities until Louis XIV's Edict of Revocation in 1685. From September 1686 to early 1688, the French crown used Martinique as a threat and a dumping ground for mainland Huguenots who refused to reconvert to Catholicism.
Over 1,000 Huguenots were transported to Martinique during this period under miserable and crowded ship conditions that caused many of them to die en route. Those that survived the trip were distributed to the island planters as Engagés under the system of serf peonage that prevailed in the French Antilles at the time; as many of the planters on Martinique were themselves Huguenot, who were sharing in the suffering under the harsh strictures of the Revocation, they began plotting to emigrate from Martinique with many of their arrived brethren. Many of them were encouraged by their Catholic brethren who looked forward to the departure of the heretics and seizing their property for themselves. By 1688, nearly all of Martinique's French Protestant population had escaped to the British American colonies or Protestant countries back home; the policy decimated the population of Martinique and the rest of the French Antilles and set back their colonization by decades, causing the French king to relax his policies in the islands yet leaving the islands susceptible to British occupation over the next century.
Under Governor of the Antilles Charles de Courbon, comte de Blénac, Martinique served as a home port for French pirates including Captain Crapeau, Etienne de Montauban, Mathurin Desmarestz. In years pirate Bartholomew Roberts styled his jolly roger as a black flag depicting a pirate standing on two skulls labeled "ABH" and "AMH" for "A Barbadian's Head" and "A Martinican's Head", after Governors of those two islands sent warships to capture Roberts. Martinique was occupied several times by the British including once during the Seven Years' War and twice during the Napoleonic Wars. Excepting a period from 1802–1809 following signing of the Treaty of Amiens, Britain controlled the island for most of the time from 1794–1815, when it was traded back to France at the conclusion of the Napoleonic Wars. Martinique has remained a French possession since then; as sugar prices declined in the early 1800s, the planter class lost political influence. In 1848, Victor Schoelcher persuaded the French government to end slavery in the French W
Jacques René Chirac is a French politician who served as President of France and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra from 1995 to 2007. Chirac was Prime Minister of France from 1974 to 1976 and from 1986 to 1988, as well as Mayor of Paris from 1977 to 1995. After completing his degree at Sciences Po, a term at Harvard University, the École nationale d'administration, Chirac began his career as a high-level civil servant, entered politics shortly after. Chirac occupied various senior positions, including Minister of Agriculture and Minister of the Interior. Chirac's internal policies included lower tax rates, the removal of price controls, strong punishment for crime and terrorism, business privatisation. After pursuing these policies in his second term as Prime Minister, he changed his views, he argued for more responsible economic policies, was elected President in the 1995 presidential election with 52.6% of the vote in the second round, beating Socialist Lionel Jospin, after campaigning on a platform of healing the "social rift".
Chirac's economic policies, based on dirigisme, allowing for state-directed investment, stood in opposition to the laissez-faire policies of the United Kingdom under the ministries of Margaret Thatcher and John Major, which Chirac famously described as "Anglo-Saxon ultraliberalism". He is known for his stand against the American-led assault on Iraq, his recognition of the collaborationist French Government's role in deporting Jews, his reduction of the presidential term from 7 years to 5 through a referendum in 2000. At the 2002 French presidential election, he won 82.2% of the vote in the second round against the far-right candidate, Jean-Marie Le Pen. During his second term, however, he had a low approval rating, was considered one of the least popular presidents in modern French history. On 15 December 2011, the Paris court declared Chirac guilty of diverting public funds and abusing public confidence, gave him a two-year suspended prison sentence. Chirac, born in the Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire clinic, is the son of Abel François Marie Chirac, a successful executive for an aircraft company, Marie-Louise Valette, a housewife.
His great grandparents on both sides were peasants, but his two grandfathers were teachers from Sainte-Féréole in Corrèze. According to Chirac, his name "originates from the langue d'oc, that of the troubadours, therefore that of poetry", he is a Roman Catholic. Chirac was an only child, he was educated in Paris at a private school. He attended the Lycée Carnot and the Lycée Louis-le-Grand. After his baccalauréat, he served for three months as a sailor on a coal-transporter. Chirac played rugby union for Brive's youth team, played at university level, he played second row. In 1956, he married Bernadette Chodron de Courcel, with whom he had two daughters: Laurence and Claude. Claude has long worked as a public relations assistant and personal adviser, while Laurence, who suffered from anorexia nervosa in her youth, did not participate in the political activities of her father. Chirac is the grandfather of Martin Rey-Chirac by the relationship of Claude with French judoka Thierry Rey. Jacques and Bernadette Chirac have a foster daughter, Anh Dao Traxel.
Inspired by General Charles de Gaulle, Chirac started to pursue a civil service career in the 1950s. During this period, he joined the French Communist Party, sold copies of L'Humanité, took part in meetings of a communist cell. In 1950, he signed the Soviet-inspired Stockholm Appeal for the abolition of nuclear weapons – which led him to be questioned when he applied for his first visa to the United States. In 1953, after graduating from the Paris Institute of Political Studies, he attended Harvard University's summer school, before entering the ENA, the Grande école National School of Administration, which trains France's top civil servants, in 1957. Chirac trained as a reserve military officer in armoured cavalry at Saumur, where he was ranked first in his year, he volunteered to fight in the Algerian War, using personal connections to be sent despite the reservations of his superiors. His superiors did not want to make him an officer. After leaving the ENA in 1959, he became a civil servant in the Court of Auditors.
In April 1962, Chirac was appointed head of the personal staff of Prime Minister Georges Pompidou. This appointment launched Chirac's political career. Pompidou considered Chirac his protégé, referred to him as "my bulldozer" for his skill at getting things done; the nickname "Le Bulldozer" caught on in French political circles, where it referred to his abrasive manner. As late as the 1988 presidential election, Chirac maintained this reputation. In 1995 an anonymous British diplomat said Chirac "cuts through the crap and comes straight to the point... It's refreshing, although you have to put your seat belt on when you work with him". At Pompidou's suggestion, Chirac ran as a Gaullist for a seat in the National Assembly in 1967, he was elected deputy for a stronghold of the left. This surprising victory in the context of a Gaullist ebb permitted him to enter the government as Minister of Social Affairs. Although Chirac was well-situated in de Gaulle's entourage, being related by marriage to the general's sole companion at the time of the Appeal of 18 June 1940, he was more of a "Pompidolian" than a "Gaullist".
When student and worker unrest rocked France in May 1968, Chirac played a central role in negotiating a truce. As state secr