Napoleon: Les Invalides, St Helena & G-Unique - Pt 1
Napoleon Series, Part 1 of 3 - Les Invalides
As we head into the month of October, the month in which our most famous Exiled prisoner Napoleon Bonaparte arrived on St Helena & then died on St Helena some six years later in May 1821...I reflect on my trip to the Musée de l'Armée (Army Museum and the Tomb of Napoleon) in Paris during November of last year.
In all honesty, I was blown away by the sheer magnitude of the size & detail paid to this significant part of French history, not to mention the tribute given to St Helena in being Napoleon's last place of exile & his final resting place. Whether you are a Napoleon fan or not; it's hard not to be impressed by how well his life is documented & the impact it had on the rest of the worlds' history.
See below for an example of what can be found in the Musée de l'Armée - a visual showcase of Napoleonic history.
Napoleon's tomb in Les Invalides (below) is a complete contrast to his 'empty tomb' in St Helena. It is magnificent in its own right in the sense that it is surrounded by remarkable stone & grandiose.
Whilst his 'empty tomb' on St Helena can be found in a tranquil Valley surrounded by beautiful lush vegetation & nature at it's best (pic to follow in next series) - strangely also magnificent in its own right and is one of my favourite places on the island.
I guess it's reminiscent of the contrasting life that Napoleon led... from the grandiose of an Emperor... to the modesty of an exiled Prisoner on one of the most remote islands in the world.
It's hard not to be fascinated with the dark history of Napoleon - this is a part of our history that has really put St Helena on the map. We are currently celebrating the Bicentenary which started in 2015 and will end in 2021 - marking 200 years since Napoleon was exiled and died on St Helena.
This is a 3-part series for the month of October, watch this space for the other parts in the series: Napoleon on St Helena & G-Unique jewellery inspired by Napoleon.