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Biographical/Historical Information

The print shows a scene of Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte riding a horse in full regalia through the Gate of Honor erected on Elberfelder Strasse in Düsseldorf. The Gate was constructed especially for Napoleon's visit to Düsseldorf from November 2 to 5, 1811. Napoleon had made Düsseldorf the capital of the Grand Duchy of Berg, an area established in 1806 after his victory at the Battle of Austerlitz (1805) on territories between the French Empire at the Rhine river and the German Kingdom of Westphalia. In the territories conquered by Napoleon Bonaparte, Jews were granted full citizenship for a short time. The Grand Duchy's short existence came to an end when the French forces pulled back in the course of the 1813 Battle of Leipzig. The territory was then administered by Prussia according to the Final Act of the 1815 Congress of Vienna.

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Petersen, Johann: Einzug des Kaisers Napoleon in Düsseldorf am 3. November 1811 : Nach einer Lithographie von J. Petersen, Leo Baeck Institute, 2022.29.