French, John (Denton Pinkstone), 1st earl of Ypres biographical name
(born Sept. 28, 1852, Ripple, Kent, Eng.died May 22, 1925, Deal, Kent) British military leader. A soldier from 1874, he successfully led the British cavalry in the South African War. He was appointed inspector general in 1907 and chief of the army general staff in 1913. As commander of the British Expeditionary Force from the beginning of World War I, he was criticized for his indecisive leadership at Ypres, Belg., and elsewhere that caused large numbers of British casualties. Forced to resign in 1915, he served as commander in chief in Britain and later as lord lieutenant of Ireland (1918–21).
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