- Museum number
- Object: Exhibition at Bullocks Museum of Bonepartes carriage taken at Waterloo
In a large room lit by a high double window (right) rollicking sight-seers are inspecting Napoleon's travelling-carriage. Men and women are clambering over it, and romping amorously; a man helps a fat woman to enter it. Some are inspecting other objects found in or with the carriage; three amused women inspect a chamber-pot. In a crowd at the back of the room sticks and fists are raised menacingly. On the left is a table where plate and a coffee-service are displayed; visitors inspect it. Over the wide doorway behind the carriage: 'Bullock's Museum / of / Natural Curiosities'. On the wall to the right of the door are large prints: the 'Hotentot Venus' (see No. 11577, &c.), nude and smoking a pipe, with two men peering pruriently at her; 'Polish Dwarf', three ladies inspecting a foppish dwarf (Boruwlaski, 1739-1837, see No. 7065). Beneath are stuffed birds and beasts and a bust of Napoleon. By the window (right) lean three or four imperial eagles. On the left wall four horses (harnessed to Napoleon's carriage) are depicted with two of the Imperial Guard as postilions. Above this is a gallery with cases (or pictures) of birds. In the foreground on the floor are Napoleon relics from the carriage including slippers, night-cap, a box for a toilet set, a postilion's saddle, a hat, a sword, boots, a cloak, and a pair of pistols.
10 January 1816
- Production date
Height: 228 millimetres
Width: 331 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- (Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', IX, 1949)
The carriage was exhibited in Bullock's London Museum, at the Egyptian Hall, 22 Piccadilly. It was taken by a Prussian major after Waterloo, sold to the British Government, and disposed of by them (at a loss) to Bullock, together with its contents, including a gold and silver nécessaire, a steel bedstead with two mattresses, hat, sword, uniform, and imperial mantle. 'Europ. Mag.' lxix. 81 f. See 'Repository of Arts', Feb. 1816; J. T. Tussaud, 'The Romance of Madame Tussaud's', 1921, pp. 81-99. (The carriage was destroyed, except for one axle, carefully preserved, in the fire at Mme Tussaud's in 1925.) The Museum was a serious exhibition of curiosities, antiquities, and natural history, it is here ridiculed by allusions to the Hottentot Venus, &c., as well as by the disorderly behaviour of the visitors. See No. 12703.
Grego, 'Rowlandson', ii. 309. Listed by Broadley.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number