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Explanation of the Arms of Napoleon Bonaparte, 1814
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Explanation of the Arms of Napoleon Bonaparte, 1814

Measurements: Overall: 51cm (20in) x 34cm (13.5in)

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Hand coloured satirical engraving, after George Cruikshank, published by R. Ackermann, at his Repository of the Arts, 101 Strand, London. Paper size: 46.5cm (18.25in) x 29cm (11.4in). Framed and glazed.
 
‘Explanation of the Arms of Napoleon Bonaparte’ and inscribed ‘The Tyrant of France, who created himself Emperor of the French 18th May 1803 [sic] was dethroned by the French Senate 2d April 1814; compelled to abdicate for himself and his Family 6th April, and his Life spared on condition of being transported for the remainder of his days to the Island of Elba; whither he was sent under escort on the 20th of April, 1814.' Framed and glazed.
 
In an earlier version of this engraving lefthand supporter was depicted as Napoleon’s crafty chief diplomat Talleyrand (who deftly transferred his allegiance to the restored Louis XVIII in 1814). In the present version he is replaced by the skeleton figure holding an hour glass, as a representation of Death, with the Gallic cock at his feet, pecking at a crucifix ‘as symbolic of the Corsican's impiety.’
 
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