Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Napoleon's hat

In the 1801 painting "Napoleon Crossing the Alps” (IMAGE HERE), Jacques Louis David depicts the French emperor in his trademark bicorn hat. He actually wore the 2-cornered, black felt hat sideways so that he could be recognized on the battlefield. Alexandre Giquello of the Osenat auction house in Fontainebleau, France, says of Napoleon, "He understood at that time that the symbol was powerful. On the battlefields, his enemies called him ‘The Bat’ because he has that silhouette with this hat.” During his 15-year reign, Napoleon reportedly went through about 120 hats, 19 of which of are still extant. One of these (PICTURED ABOVE), in the possession of Prince Albert II of Monaco, just sold at auction to an unnamed South Korean collector for $2.4 million (£1.5 million).

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