Later given by Philip Albert Gustave David Sassoon, 3rd Baronet of Kensington Gore (1888-1939), to Princess Marthe Bibesco (1886-1973) in the 1930s.
Countess Maria Colonna Walewska (née Lackzinska) was born in 1786 into a Polish family. Her father, Mathieu Laczynski, who had fought heroically during the struggle for Polish independence, died prematurely, leaving his wife Eva with six young children on her own. Maria married Count Athanase Walewski, 55 years her senior, and bore him a son, Antoni Rudolf Bazyli Colonna-Walewski. Together with her husband, they shared a great passion for their nation and became fervent patriots for the freedom of their country, which was at the time dominated by their neighbours Russia, Prussia and Austria. Napoleon returned the country back to the Polish in 1807.
A popular and romantic account of Countess Maria Waleska and Napoleon’s first meeting tells that, in 1807, Maria was waiting for the Emperor outside, despite the chill of a bitterly cold Polish winter, at a place Napoleon was due to change horses before heading to Warsaw. It is said that Maria pushed her way through the crowd and asked France’s Grand Marshal of the Palace, Géraud Duroc, to be led up to Napoleon’s carriage, where she stuttered: “welcome, a thousand times welcome to our land…”. From that meeting followed a long love affair between the two, that led to the birth of their child, Alexander in 1810.
Please call 1-800-555-5555 to order a print catalog for this sale.
Online Registration to Bid is Closed for this Sale. Would you like to watch the live sale?Watch Live Sale