teacher, Jean Pichegru joined the French army in 1780 and served
as a gunner in America.
abilities led to regular promotion and in 1792 he was elected colonel.
fought on the Rhine and by the end of 1793 was a general of division.
skills made him the perfect replacement for General
Jourdan at the head of the Army of the Rhine and the Army of
the latter he took the Austrian Provinces (Belgium), overran Holland
and in 1795 captured the Dutch fleet with cavalry after the vessels
took Mainz, but stepped down from command after the Austrians recaptured
into politics he was elected to the Cinq-Cents,
becoming its president but, after the coup of Fructidor, he was
exiled to Guiana.
later Pichegru staged an escape and wound up in London.
1803 he plotted against Napoleon
Bonaparte and was a key participant, along with General
Moreau, in the plan to kidnap the First Consul.
failure led to his arrest and on 5 April 1804 he was discovered
strangled to death in his prison cell. It could have been murder,
but the handkerchief tightened around his neck with a stick is generally
accepted as being suicide.