Napoleon's signed Kremlin letter to see explosive bids at $19,500



2015-06-26 13:02:35

Napoleon's signed Kremlin letter to see explosive bids at $19,500

A coded letter in which Napoleon threatens to blow-up the Kremlin is to sell in France

A letter in which Napoleon Bonaparte vows to blow up Russia's Kremlin is expected to meet withexcellent results in a December auction in Paris.

Napoleon signed Kremlin letter Paul Fraser Collectibles has three signed Napoleon letters available, including this example

The coded message is written in numbers, which translate as "I will blow up the Kremlin on the 22nd at three am", and is signed "Nap" at the bottom. It is estimated to sell for 10,000-15,000 ($13,000-19,500).

The letter is addressed to Napoleon's secretary Hugues-Bernard Maret, Duc de Bassano, and is dated October 20, 1812 - the day after Napoleon had retreated from the centre of Moscow. It also sees Napoleon requesting Maret to provide supplies and more horses for his troops, who were suffering in Russia's freezing weather.

The bombing of the Kremlin was carried out as planned by Marshal Mortier, with the attackdestroying a number of the building's towers and sections of its walls. However, Napoleon'sRussian campaignwould end withthe general'sundefeated record severely tarnished, culminating in the Great Retreat, in which many of his men perished due to a lack of food and the harsh conditions.

Also featuring in the sale is Napoleon's essay on campaign fortification, which he dictated and annotated while exiled on Saint Helena. Reflecting on the outcome of the Russian invasion, the essay was dictated to General Bertrand - one of Napoleon's most loyal men.

Thework has been consigned by the family of General Bertrand and will form part of a lot of 180 manuscript pages and 44 sketches, which is estimated at 60,000-80,000 ($78,000-104,000).

Paul Fraser Collectibles has a superb selection of Napoleon Bonaparte memorabilia currently available. Our collection is highlighted by a letter addressed to the Duc de Feltre, who would later become Napoleon's minister of war, and an authentic strand of the Little General's hair.

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