Napoleon Hat sells for €1.9 at Paris Auction

Monday, November 20, 2023
Napoleon Hat sells for €1.9 at Paris Auction

A hat belonging to Napoleon Bonaparte when he ruled France in the 19th Century has been sold for €1.9m at auction in Paris.

The bicorne black beaver felt hat was valued between €600,000 and €800,000. Historians say the hat was part of his brand. Wearing it sideways made him recognisable in battle. He owned about 120 bicorne hats over the years.

However only 20 are thought to remain - many in private collections. The hat is being sold along with other Napoleonic memorabilia assembled by an industrialist who died last year.

The emperor wore his hat with the corns parallel to shoulders - known as "en bataille" - whereas most of his officers wore their hats perpendicular to the shoulders. 

Auctioneer Jean Pierre Osenat said: "People recognised this hat everywhere. When they saw it on the battlefields, they knew Napoleon was there. And when in private, he always had it on his head or he had it in his hand, and sometimes he threw it on the ground. That was the image - the symbol of the emperor." The auctioneers said this hat comes with impeccable provenance, remaining throughout the 19th Century in the family of Napoleon's palace quartermaster.

The hat being auctioned by Osenat auction house in Fontainebleau has a cockade that Napoleon fixed to his hat in 1815, during the crossing of the Mediterranean from his exile in Elba to Antibes, where he led a brief return to power.

Main Image :Napoleons' Hat, Osenat Auction House



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Anna Melnykova, "Palace of Labor (palats praci), architector I. Pretro, 1916", shot with analog Canon camera, 35 mm Fuji film in March 2022.

Anna Melnykova, "Palace of Labor (palats praci), architector I. Pretro, 1916", shot with analog Canon camera, 35 mm Fuji film in March 2022.


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