Napoleon’s bicorne hat expected to fetch up to £500,000 at auction in Paris

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A painting of Bonaparte from around 1810 (Getty Images)
A painting of Bonaparte from around 1810 (Getty Images)

A hat once worn by Napoleon Bonaparte is being put up for auction in Paris.

In commemoration of the 200-year anniversary of the emperor’s death, Sotheby’s announced on Thursday (15 July) that one of Napoleon’s instantly recognisable bircone naval hats would be put on sale.

It is expected to fetch between €400,000 (£341,000) and €600,000 (£511,000) when it goes on sale in September.

The hat, which is made of black felt, was worn by the military leader around the year 1807, when he held the title of Emperor of the French.

Napoleon is believed to have worn the hat as he signed the peace treaties of Tilsit, which were used to divide Europe between French and Russian rule.

It is one of only 19 bicorne hats owned by Napoleon still in existence, many of which are in museums.

The hat will go on sale in Paris in September (Sothebys)
The hat will go on sale in Paris in September (Sothebys)

Sir Michael Shaw-Stewart, a Conservative Party politician, purchased the hat in 1814, where it has since passed down between the generations in his family.

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