This year marks significant anniversaries of past wars. April 25th saw many thousands of Australians rising early in the morning to attend services across the country to remember the many Diggers who lost their lives a hundred years ago at Anzac Cove on the Gallipoli Peninsula. No doubt throughout the coming year other events and exhibitions will continue to remind us of the significance and drama of the final year of the First World War.
2015 also marks the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo – the world changing event that saw Napoleon Bonaparte defeated at last by the Duke of Wellington. In June this year many Napoleonic re-enactors are heading to France to take part in a re-enactment of the Battle of Waterloo and the final downfall of France’s Emperor Napoleon.
On the first of May the Pine Rivers Heritage Museum – Old Petrie Town open a new exhibition entitled Napoleon’s Last Gamble. This exhibition commemorates the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo. This fascinating display looks at the impact of the French Revolution and the rise to power of Napoleon.
Pride of place in the exhibition is a 19th century bronze statue of Napoleon from the Abbey Museum collection. Also from our collection are several smaller Egyptian antiquities including small that were placed in pharaonic Egyptian tombs. Napoleon was intensely interested in ancient Egypt with its splendid and mysterious temples and tombs. In 1798 he landed in Egypt with a large army. Accompanying his army was a large number of scholars, artists and scientists who were among the first to document the mysteries of ancient Egypt. Napoleon was forced to abandon his Egyptian campaign after losing the navel battle of Aboukir Bay in August 1798
If you visit the Abbey Museum you will see in case 14 a British Infantry Officers sword that is attributed by JSM Ward to have been used at the Battle of Waterloo. And if you have a fascination for ancient Egypt, like Napoleon, then you will enjoy the Museums Egyptian display which includes a Mummy mask, a carved figure of a rower, string of faience beads and remarkable burial collar.
Book on line to visit the Abbey Museum.