Today's mail brought a little present that I bought myself on E-Bay: a nice statue of Napoleon Bonaparte (see picture above) standing in his famous pose with hand buried in his waistcoat. The white bust shown in the picture was a Christmas gift from Mrs. Fritz in 2013.
Over the past few years I have started collecting statues of Napoleon. They come in all shapes and sizes and I have ten of them so far. Whenever I see a statue or bust, I buy it, provided that it is not some expensive antique running thousands of dollars. We try to keep things real here in Hesse Seewald. My one parameter is that the collection will not include war game figures and must be at least 54mm toy soldier size or larger.
Part of my Napoleon collection can be seen on the bookshelves in my library, in the picture below.
The Napoleon collection started with a Royal Daulton Toby Jug, or Character Jug, of the Duke of Wellington (gasp!). The handle on the Wellington jug had a miniature Napoleon. I then found an actual Napoleon jug in an antique store and that really got the collection going. Next, I found a pair of 12-inch tall porcelains from Germany and added a couple of small busts here and there.
I have also added some framed pictures of Napoleon in my library. A trip to Paris ten years ago produced a deck of playing cards in which all of the face cards have pictures of either Napoleon as King and Josephine as Queen, and various French marshals as the Jacks. So I removed all of the face cards from the deck and took them to a picture frame shop and had the cards framed. It turned out rather nice (see below).
I also found a set of six cheese plates, one of which included Napoleon, so I bought the whole set just to get the one plate, shown below. Another antique store find was a pair of wax silhouette rounds of the Emperor and Empress and these were posted on the wall to fill a narrow space next to a window. I later cut out a picture of a younger Napoleon and had the frame store put him in a round frame that augments the silhouettes. See below.
I'm always on the lookout for more Napoleonic items. If you have any that you want to part with, contact me and we can work out a transaction. My Holy Grail item is the limited edition Royal Daulton Napoleon Toby Jug that was produced in the early 1990s. I've been looking for one of these for a very long time.