Empire

became supreme, and so far reaching in other paths that even the designing of the official dresses of the court was entrusted to him. Napoleon heaped favours upon his head, created him "Commander of the Legion of Honour," so that he took rank with his erstwhile master; and so inflated did he become with the greatness of his own importance that his conceit was almost intolerable, and fortunate were they deemed who could persuade him to execute commissions for them. A story is told to the effect that the Duke of Wellington visited David's studio on one occasion, and expressed a desire to be painted, but that the artist met the request by turning on his heel with the retort that he did not paint Englishmen ! Whether this be true I am not in a position to affirm.

The studies of these men had naturally made them masters of the best traditions of ancient Egyptian, Greek, and Roman art, and those traditions furnished exactly the inspiration which they required for the execution of the work they had in hand. Their imperial patron, moreover, had travelled much in the lands of the Caesars and the Pharaohs; had seen and admired many of the incomparable works of their times; and had found in them a material expression of the stupendous greatness of his own imaginings and plans. So there was an open field, a clearly defined programme, and unlimited opportunity for the achievement of great things; and certainly the chapter which was written at this time in the history of the art of the world moves with stately measure.

In considering individual examples of " Empire " furniture, we may note, in the first place, whether, notwithstanding the determination to banish all memories of the "Louis-Seize" and of the preceding styles, any traces of them lingered in the homes of Napoleon. It would indeed have been remarkable had absolutely none remained; some actually did, but they are very slight and few and far between. I will, however, point out one or two. If the general forms of Figs.

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