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A portrait miniature of Caroline Bonaparte


Seated wearing low cut- white satin dress with blue scarf, Vesuvius in the background
Signed on the obverse (on the tree) , set in the original silver-gilt-metal mount with chased laurel and berry border, the reverse glazed to reveal inscription : Souvenir de / Caroline Buonaparte/ epouse de Joachim Murat/ roi de Naples. Further signed in ink, Buonaparte beneath the initials CM made of hair.

Dun worked chiefly in Naples. Maria Annuciata Caroline Bonaparte was born at Ajaccio in 1800 and married Joachim Murat, King of Naples

Caroline was a younger sister of Napoleon I of France. She was queen of Naples during the reign of her spouse there, and regent of Naples during his absence four times: in 1812-13, 1813, 1814 and 1815.
In 1793, Caroline moved with her family to France during the French Revolution She fell in love with Joachim Murat, one of her brother's generals, and they married on 20 Jan 1800. Caroline became Grand Duchess of Berg and Cleves on 15 March 1806 and Queen consort of Naples on 1 August 1808, when her husband was appointed to the equivalent positions by her brother.
As queen, Caroline renovated the royal residences in Naples, had new gardens planned, encouraged the growing interest in furniture of Classical design, patronized the silk- and cotton industry and French artists in Naples, showed an interest in the archaeological discoveries of Pompeii and founded a school for girls.
More Information
Medium                 watercolour on ivory
Signed                 Signed on the obverse
Provenance                 Collection of Mrs. Montague, Sotheby's 27 April, 1939, lot 162, illustrated
Collection of the late Sir St.Clair Thomson, Sotheby's 9th November, 1944
M. Papier Collection
Condition                 Minor flecks of dust under the glass. Frame slightly tarnished.
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