Large gilt bronze mantel clock commemorating Napoleon
French, c. 1840
Height 57cm, width 40cm, depth 15cm
The gilt bronze mantel clock is set on a rectangular, tiered base with four decorative feet. The lower tier is centred with a sleeping lion above a plaque showing the scarf, sword, and hat of Napoleon. There is a relief plaque above the lion showing a ship off St Helena (the location of Napoleon’s exile) and to either side further decorations formed as martial trophies. To the top of the plaque is a portrait medallion of Napoleon with winged cherubs and the letter ‘N’. The circular dial of the clock is set to the centre above the base within a gilt bronze border and flanked by the figures of France and an eagle to either side. Between them they hold an urn, which bears the inscription ‘Ste Helene / 5 Mai 1821’. The figure of France holds a flag inscribed ‘France 1840.’ The clock is a commemorative piece, produced to celebrate the return of Napoleon’s ashes to France in 1840.