A pale, cracked felt hat worn by Napoléon Bonaparte fetched $1.6 million at an public sale Sunday of the French emperor’s belongings
ByThe Related Press
November 19, 2023, 2:03 PM
PARIS — A pale and cracked felt hat worn by Napoléon Bonaparte fetched $1.6 million at an public sale Sunday of the French emperor’s belongings
Sure, $1.6 million.
The signature broad, black hat — one in every of a handful nonetheless in existence that Napoléon wore when he dominated nineteenth century France and waged struggle in Europe — was initially valued at 600,000 to 800,000 euros ($650,000-870,000). It was the centerpiece of Sunday’s public sale in Fontainebleau of memorabilia collected by a French industrialist who died final 12 months.
However the bidding rapidly jumped increased and better till Jean Pierre Osenat, president of the Osenat public sale home, designated the winner.
‘’We’re at 1.5 million (euros) for Napoleon’s hat … for this main image of the Napoleonic epoch,” he mentioned. The identify of the successful bidder was not launched.
Whereas different officers typically wore their hats with the wings dealing with entrance to again, Napoléon wore his with the ends pointing towards his shoulders. The model — often called “en bataille,” or in battle — made it simpler for his troops to identify their chief in fight.
The hat on sale was first recovered by Col. Pierre Baillon, a quartermaster below Napoléon, in response to the auctioneers. The hat then handed by means of many palms earlier than industrialist Jean-Louis Noisiez acquired it.
The entrepreneur spent greater than a half-century assembling his assortment of Napoleonic memorabilia, firearms, swords and cash earlier than his demise in 2022.