Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Napoléon III (1808–1873), Emperor of the French

Artist:
Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux (French, Valenciennes 1827–1875 Courbevoie)
Date:
1873
Culture:
French, Paris
Medium:
Marble
Dimensions:
Overall (confirmed): 20 1/2 x 14 1/2 x 11 3/8 in. (52.1 x 36.8 x 28.9 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Purchase, Anne and George Blumenthal Fund, Munsey and Fletcher Funds, funds from various donors, Agnes Shewan Rizzo Bequest and Mrs. Peter Oliver Gift, 1974
Accession Number:
1974.297
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 556
In 1871, Carpeaux was invited to sculpt the emperor while they were both in exile in England. Sittings in 1872 were interrupted by the emperor’s illness, and Carpeaux arrived at Chislehurst too late by one day: Napoleon III died January 9, 1873, and the marble is dated January 13, implying that Carpeaux touched up his model after viewing the corpse.
Signature: Signed and dated (on left tranche): Chiselhurst [sic] / 13 Janvier 1873 / JBte Carpeaux.

Inscription: on front vertical tranche: NAPOLEON. III.
Empress Eugénie de Montijo , Chislehurst, London, then Farnborough Hill, Hampshire, England (1873–d. 1920); [ her sale, Hampton and Sons , Farnborough Hill, July 18–27, 1927; to Fabius ] ; Raymond Fabius , Neuilly-sur-Seine (1927–56) ; [ Fabius Frères , Paris (until 1974; sold to MMA) ]
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