Napoleon’s Engagement Ring to Empress Joséphine Could Be Yours!


If you are not completely decided on your engagement ring just yet, you might like to consider an investment engagement ring with a famous history! Presented in 1796 to wife-to-be Joséphine, Napoleon Bonaparte chose this Georgian matching pear-shaped diamond mounted in a sterling silver bezel and sapphire engagement ring mounted in yellow gold, as a token of his undying love, pending of course, an heir!


Estimate to realize between $13,000 and $20,000, this 18th Century sapphire and diamond engagement ring was offered with his hand in marriage, to 32 year old widowed Empress Joséphine, six years Bonaparte’s senior. Proposing prior to departure for his Italian command, Napoleon Bonaparte planned on a March 9, 1796 wedding date according to the Osenat auction house in Fontainebleau, France. Purportedly originating from the collection of Empress Eugenie and Emperor Napoleon III, the last monarch of France and the nephew and heir to Napoleon, sadly this engagement ring did not symbolize eternal love.


Even though Napoleon formally adopted Joséphine’s son Eugène and cousin Stéphanie, he was adamant about a bloodline heir. Since Empress Joséphine was not able to produce a child for Napoleon, he divorced her to marry Marie Louise, Archduchess of Austria in March 1810. Together they parented just one child, Napoleon Francis Joseph Charles who in 1814 became Napoleon II, reigning for just two weeks. Known as the King of Rome since birth, the Prince Imperial or Napoleon II, widely known in France as "the Eaglet,” was not recognized as successor by the coalition partners that had defeated Napoleon and he was forced to abdicate unconditionally one week later.

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