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Napoleon Bonaparte's hat goes up for auction, staggering sale value

2023-11-20 15:13:00, Lifestyle CNA
Napoleon Bonaparte's hat goes up for auction, staggering sale value
Napoleon Bonaparte's hat

A hat worn by Napoleon sold for $1.5 million at an auction of the French emperor's belongings.

A faded and cracked French imperial hat worn by Napoléon Bonaparte sold for $1.5 million at auction on Sunday, with the buyer paying a total bill of $2.1 million, The Guardian reports .

The black, broad-brimmed hat, one of the few in existence worn by Napoleon when he ruled 19th-century France and waged war in Europe, was originally estimated at 600,000 to 800,000 euros, or $650,000 to $870,000.

Bidding for the hat immediately increased until Jean Pierre Osenat, president of the Osenat auction house, named the winner.

"We are at 1.5 million euros for Napoleon's hat... for this great symbol of the Napoleonic era," he said, as applause erupted in the auction room. The buyer, whose identity was not released, must pay a 28.8% commission, according to Osenat, bringing the total cost to 1.9 million euros, or $2.1 million.

While other officers usually wore their bicorne hats with their arms facing out, Napoleon wore his with the brim pointing down over his shoulders. The style — known as "en bataille," or in battle — made it easier for his troops to recognize their leader in combat./ CNA

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