Looking to purchase online? Ask the dealer if it's available.
Skillfully crafted of carved nephrite, this one-of-a-kind sculpture is a fantastical recreation of the tomb of Napoleon on St. Helena ...
moreSkillfully crafted of carved nephrite, this one-of-a-kind sculpture is a fantastical recreation of the tomb of Napoleon on St. Helena, the island of the Emperor’s final exile and eventual death. Almost certainly made in the first years following the legendary leader’s death, the work lends Napoleon’s tomb a grandeur and opulence it never achieved in life; the original tomb in St. Helena’s Sane Valley was a simple, unadorned plot beneath a willow. The present piece, however, is crafted with a complexity and majesty befitting the French leader. Fascinating in subject and design, this objet d’art is an intricate and dazzling display of nephrite workmanship.
An island 1,162 miles from the west coast of Africa, St. Helena was chosen as the place of Napoleon’s final exile precisely for its isolation; the British feared a repeat of Elba, when Napoleon escaped exile after just 11 months. Due to its remoteness, few Frenchmen were able to visit the tomb of their former Emperor, and only a handful of sketches of his resting place beneath a willow tree were brought back to France.
In the present piece, the artist carves from a stunning specimen of nephrite his vision of Napoleon’s final resting place. Here, Napoleon’s tomb is bedecked in the adornments of the Empire style, with a French Imperial eagle at each corner. The top of the tomb can by removed, revealing a tiny Napoleon figurine carved from nephrite, complete with his distinctive bicorne hat, resting inside. The tomb rests beneath the flowing limbs of a St. Helena willow tree, which is the one true-to-life element of this stunning and imaginative rendering.
Napoleon's exile to St. Helena in 1815 brought an end to the Napoleonic Wars that had dominated the preceding years. After his death in 1821, his body would spend another 19 years on the island in an unnamed tomb surrounded by a simple railing. Among the visitors to Napoleon’s grave was the English naturalist Charles Darwin. With regards to the gravesite, he wrote: "…a tomb situated close by cottages and a frequented road does not create feelings in unison with the imagined resting place of so great a spirit… if Napoleon's ghost haunts his dreary place of confinement, this would be a most excellent night for such wandering Spirits."
Like Darwin, the craftsman of this extraordinary piece must have balked at the simplified resting place of the once-great leader. Yet, Napoleon would eventually find a more suitable burial place - in 1840, following a request from the King Louis-Philippe, Napoleon’s remains were returned to Paris, where they were entombed in the Dôme des Invalides. less
- 15.5ʺW × 9ʺD × 19.25ʺH
- Condition Notes
- Good - Moderate wear and tear, but still has good years left Good - Moderate wear and tear, but still has good years left less
- Art Subject
For Made-to-Order items, refer to the product description for lead times and delivery window specific to your item. For all other items, please see below:
- Free Shipping
- Free shipping is offered on select listings.
- Items are typically delivered within 2 weeks of the purchase date.
- Larger items and furniture may take up to 6 weeks for delivery.
- Free Local Pickup
- Local pickup allows customers to inspect an item in person and avoid shipping costs
- A confirmation email is sent after the purchase with: Pickup Verification & Seller's contact information
- Please contact the seller within 5 days to coordinate pickup
- Parcel Delivery
- Shipment arranged through recognized carriers such as UPS, FedEx, DHL and USPS
- Only pieces that can be safely packed in a box are eligible
- Shipping charges start at $9 — Dependent on size, weight, value and packaging
- Items are typically delivered within 2 weeks of the purchase date
- DECASO White Glove Delivery
- Item is delivered inside your home
- Deliveries typically take about up to 6 weeks
- Delivery may take up to 8 weeks in more remote locations
- Shipping charges start at $299, depending on product type, value, size and location
- Seller Managed Delivery
- Shipping offered and managed by the seller
- Pickup and delivery through a shipper of the seller’s choice
- Available on items at the seller’s discretion
- Seller Managed Local Delivery
- Local curbside delivery handled by the seller within a limited geography
- A confirmation email is sent after the purchase with: Pickup Verification Code & Seller’s contact information
- Please contact the seller within 5 days to coordinate delivery
- Prior to shipping or local pickup, buyers may cancel an order for any reason.
- Please notify us within 24 hours of purchase if you would like to cancel an order, as prompt cancellation will reduce the likelihood that you will incur return shipping charges.
Under the DECASO Buyer Guarantee, all sales are final unless your item is:
- Entirely different than what you purchased
- If any of the above applies, email firstname.lastname@example.org within 48 hours of delivery, and if applicable DECASO will issue a full refund, including the outbound and return shipping charges.
- Local Pickup & Local Delivery
- All sales final once buyer takes possession of item.
- If you decide to cancel the order at pick up, you or your agent must reject the item at the time of pickup or delivery from the seller. Do not take the item with you or accept the curbside delivery.
- Please contact email@example.com to let us know you did not accept the item and would like to initiate a return.