Charles de Broqueville

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Charles de Broqueville
20th Prime Minister of Belgium
In office
22 October 1932 – 20 November 1934
MonarchAlbert I
Leopold III
Preceded byJules Renkin
Succeeded byGeorges Theunis
In office
17 June 1911 – 1 June 1918
MonarchAlbert I
Preceded byFrans Schollaert
Succeeded byGérard Cooreman
Personal details
Born(1860-12-04)4 December 1860
Postel, Belgium
Died5 September 1940(1940-09-05) (aged 79)
Brussels, Belgium
Political partyCatholic Party
Memorial to Charles de Broqueville on Avenue de Broqueville, Woluwe-St-Lambert, Brussels

Charles Marie Pierre Albert, Count de Broqueville (4 December 1860 – 5 September 1940) was the 20th Prime Minister of Belgium, serving during World War I.

Before 1914[edit]

First elected to the Chamber of Representatives in 1892, he represented the arrondissement of Turnhout until June 1919.

He was the leader of Belgium's Catholic Party, and he served as prime minister between 1911 and 1918, heading the de Broqueville government.

Once it became clear that Germany intended to violate Belgian neutrality in August 1914, he oversaw Belgium's mobilization for war. Despite the mobilization, de Broqueville opposed King Albert I's proposal to deploy the Belgian Army along the German frontier in 1914 — instead strategically placing them throughout the country. He recognized that wartime support for Belgium depended upon its continued status as a non-provocative neutral power.


The German invasion of 1914 forced the Belgian government into exile at Le Havre. De Broqueville fought the king on the neutrality issue, hereby denying Belgium a full alliance with the Allied forces.

This opposition of the king critically weakened de Broqueville's stance among members of his cabinet. Consequently, he resigned as Foreign Secretary in January 1918 and as Prime Minister in May when he lost the support of his own party.

De Broqueville also served as minister in various departments:

  • Minister of Railways and PTT (Posts, Telegraphs and Telephones) 1910-1912
  • Minister of War 1912-1917
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs 1917
  • Minister of Reconstruction 1917-1918
  • Minister of the Interior 1918-1919
  • Minister of National Defence 1926-1930

After the War[edit]

Later, Charles de Broqueville became Prime Minister a second time, serving from 22 October 1932 until 20 November 1934.



See also[edit]


  1. ^ Royal Decree of 1919/-Mémorial du centenaire de l'Ordre de Léopold. 1832-1932. Bruxelles, J. Rozez, 1933..

References and further reading[edit]

  • Louis DE LICHTERVELDE, Charles de Broqueville, in: Biographie Nationale de Belgique, t. XXIX, 1956-1957, p. 369-377.
  • Paul VAN MOLLE, La parlement belge, 1894-1972, Antwerp, 1972
  • Luc SCHEPENS, Albert Ier et le gouvernement Broqueville, 1914–1918 : aux origines de la question communautaire. Paris 1983,
  • Thierry DENOËL, Le nouveau dictionnaire des Belges, 2e éd. revue et augm., Brussels, Le Cri, 1992, p. 167.
  • Maria DE WAELE, Charles de Broqueville, in: Nieuwe Encyclopedie van de Vlaamse Beweging, Tielt, 1998
  • Paul VOS, Charles de Broqueville op de kering der tijden, in: Vlaamse Stam, 2012, blz. 122-142.
  • Frans RENAERS, De opvoeding van Charles de Broqueville, in: Vlaamse Stam, blz 142-145.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Frans Schollaert
Prime Minister of Belgium
Succeeded by
Gérard Cooreman
Preceded by
Jules Renkin
Prime Minister of Belgium
Succeeded by
Georges Theunis