Ben Weider’s Napoleonic Collection at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

Napoleon in coronation robes Gerard

The late Ben Weider, of bodybuilding fame, was a passionate collector of Napoleonic memorabilia, the founder of the International Napoleonic Society, and a proponent of the poisoning theory of Napoleon’s death, which I plan on addressing here shortly.

Mr. Weider, a Montreal native, bequeathed his Napoleonic collection to that city’s Museum of Fine Arts, where it is now on display. The Museum website only features Napoleon’s hat, worn during the tragic Russian campaign. For more images of the items to be seen at Montreal, see this article in La Tribune de l’Art (in French).

Also did you know that The Wallace Collection, most famous for French 18th century art, likewise houses a remarkable collection of Napoleonic art and memorabilia? Another reason to (re)visit one of London’s finest museums.

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