The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
This object is currently being catalogued
  • Badge
  • This object is currently being catalogued
  • Martin-Guillaume Biennais (1764 - 1843)
  • Paris, France
  • 1809 - 1813
  • Gold
  • Weight: 19.4 g
  • B between 2 dots in a lozenze, and a boy's head in profile with the number 2
    Incised mark
    Incised mark: 'B' Inside a diamond shape
  • W331
  • West Gallery III
Commentary
History
  • The Legion of Honour was established by Napoleon in 1802 as an ‘honour to recognise military bravery and civilian merit’. It remains to this day France’s most prestigious national order. This link is from a collar which would have contained sixteen such links and been worn by its recipient on formal occasions. It is in the form of an eagle with the thunderbolts of Jupiter. Napoleon personally chose the spread-winged eagle, inspired by the Roman eagle of Antiquity, as the emblem of his empire.