French legislative election, 1885

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French legislative election, 1885
French Third Republic
← 1881 4–18 October 1885 1889 →

All 584 seats to the Chamber of Deputies
  Majority party Minority party Third party
  Armand de Mackau 1913.jpg Henri Brisson.jpg Goblet.jpg
Leader Armand de Mackau Henri Brisson René Goblet
Party Conservative Union Democratic Union Radical Republicans
Leader's seat Orne Seine Somme
Seats won 201 283 100
Seat change new party new party new party
Popular vote 3,471,197 2,624,704 1,986,315
Percentage 42.95% 32.48% 24.58%

France Chambre des deputes 1885.png
Composition of the Chamber of Deputies

Prime Minister before election

Jules Ferry
Republican Left

Elected Prime Minister

Henri Brisson
Democratic Union

The 1885 general election was held on 14 and 18 October 1885.

Following the deaths of Napoléon, Prince Imperial and the Comte de Chambord, the monarchists and Bonapartists formed a Conservative Union under the leadership of the Baron de Mackau. In the first round of the election, the conservatives won 176 seats, whereas the Republicans - partly because radical and moderate Republicans ran against each other, underestimating the danger from the right - only won 127. However, in the second round the radical and moderate Republicans agreed that the worse-placed Republican candidates would withdraw, and Republicans won 244 seats to the conservatives' 25, leading to a Republican victory.[1]

Henri Brisson remained premier immediately after the election, but resigned in December following his defeat in the presidential election to the incumbent, Jules Grévy. Brisson was replaced as premier by Charles de Freycinet.


Parliamentary Groups[edit]

Affiliation Party Seats
  Radical-Socialists and Socialists 60
  Radicals 40
  Opportunist Republicans 200
  Moderate Republicans 83
  Conservatives 63
  Bonapartists 52
  Monarchists 86
Total 584


  1. ^ Gildea, R., Children of the Revolution, London, 2008, p. 257