Alexander, Napoleon and Joséphine
A Story of Friendship, War and Art from the Hermitage


Alexander, Napoelon and Joséphine: three big names on the European scene at the beginning of the nineteenth century. A story of friendship, war and art from the Hermitage.

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Hermitage Amsterdam

“Alexander, Napoleon and Joséphine” presents these three historical figures, whose lives were deeply intertwined. Through their struggle as well as their friendship, emperors Tsar Alexander I and Napoleon Bonaparte determined the fate of millions of Europeans. The intelligent Joséphine de Beauharnais also plays a fascinating role as the great love of Napoleon, the Empress at his side and a later good friend of Alexander.

From the peace raft in Tilsit in 1807 to the meeting between the Tsar and Joséphine in Paris in 1814. Napoleon’s Russian campaign of 1812 plays an important role in the book. The war is the beginning of its end. One essay is also devoted to the Dutch who fought on the French side. Joséphine appears in the book as a muse and friend, but also as a curator of an art collection, with masters such as Potter, Van der Werff, Luini and Canova. Special attention is paid to the miraculous way in which her beautiful tableware and furniture ended up in St. Petersburg.

Hermitage Amsterdam

The Hermitage Amsterdam takes it as their mission to draw upon art and history to inspire, enrich, and offer the opportunity for reflection. By way of their exhibitions and activities, the museum presents world heritage from the collections of various museums in innovative ways. The museum also houses collections from other museums, including the Amsterdam Museum, the Rijksmuseum (the exhibition Portrait Gallery of the 17th Century), and Museum van de Geest | Dolhuys (Museum of the Mind | Outsider Art).

The museum is housed in the Amstelhof, a historical building that used to be a home for the elderly from the late 15th all the way to the early 21th century. Only in 2007, the last residents were moved out of the building, which was in dire need of renovation. Two years later, on 20 June 2009 the Hermitage Amsterdam was opened to the public with the launch of the exhibition At the Russian court.


Binding method



Cathalijne Broers


9789078653547, 9789078653554


Dutch, English



Publication date

April 2015


WBooks, Uitgeverij


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A Story of Friendship, War and Art from the Hermitage

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