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Napoleonic memorabilia collected after the Battle of Waterloo

Sèvres porcelain factory

Table of the Great Commanders 1806-12

RCIN 2634

Blue Drawing Room, Buckingham Palace

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Constructed almost entirely from porcelain, this remarkable table was one of four commissioned by Napoleon to immortalise his reign. It took six years to complete and incorporates an internal wooden structure to support its revolving top. The decoration shows Alexander the Great surrounded by the most renowned commanders and philosophers of the classical period. It can be no coincidence that the profile of Alexander closely resembles Napoleon himself. After Bonaparte's defeat, the table was given to George IV as a gift by the grateful Louis XVIII of France. So highly did George IV regard the item that it featured in all his state portraits thereafter (for example, RCIN 405918).