Napoleon - An Intimate Portrait

Chair from Napoléon’s personal Tuileries office

Chair from Napoléon’s personal Tuileries office


This is one of just a handful of chairs that were used in the inner sanctum of the Empire, Napoléon’s small, private office overlooking the Tuileries Gardens and the Seine. Here the Emperor, his private secretary and his intimate circle of advisors sat during the years they worked tirelessly to rebuild France and change the face of Europe.

Napoléon normally dictated his correspondence, sometimes simultaneously composing multiple letters with the assistance of several secretaries. With great focus, he spoke quickly, moving from secretary to secretary, often running far ahead of their shorthand. Afterwards, he would make corrections on transcripts he was provided and finally sign the polished documents.

Historical Provenance - Olivier Lefuel collection

Gilded wood, velvet and brocade

Images © Chalençon
A Traveling Exhibition from Russell Etling Company (c) 2011