Please enjoy this story of the jewel-encrusted ‘Napoleon talisman’, whose owners hope to sell for $250 million
Curiosités is a section where I comment on the artistic news of the week, sometimes on stories too small or too strange to be retained, sometimes just to give my opinion on the ups and downs.
Here’s what caught my eye this week…
The case of Napoleon’s talisman
This is really, really huge art news: the auction of an ultra-rare jewel-encrusted crystal sphinx that once belonged to Napoleon himself. Best guess? A staggering $250 million.
Why then, you ask, haven’t you heard of this landmark event? Perhaps because it’s run by the Miami-based Auction Company of America, which specializes in estate liquidations. Perhaps also because the existence of a jeweled “Napoleon talisman” was previously unknown to art historians, arousing some skepticism.
So let me present to you the evidence in favor of the talisman’s authenticity and significance, which impressed Napoleonic jewelry experts such as Pat Boone. The Eisenhower-era hitmaker and conservative Christian icon has put his stamp of approval on the sale and will even be present in person at the Talisman’s public unveiling and auction launch event on February 4. (the final auction takes place on March 4).
The modern history of the Napoleon Talisman, as told in a video on the official Talisman website, begins in 1936, when a Dutch trencher found it. He brought it with him to the United States fleeing World War II, passed it on to his son, who in turn put it on eBay, eventually trading it in for a set of Ping golf clubs at its current owner, G. Randall “Randy” Jensen. , “a member of Mensa and one of the world’s leading authorities on antique golf memorabilia.”
Due to his acute intelligence, “Randy realized the Talisman had tarot coding 45 minutes after his initial examination.” He then embarked on a six-year mission to unlock the symbols coded into the trinket’s gemstone designs, 114 in all.
The results led Jensen to believe it was once Napoleon Bonaparte’s personal talisman. These findings are presented in a 120-page research document and summarized in a 15-minute video in which Jensen decodes the details of the relic.
Much of Jensen’s evidence is based on listing the characteristics of the talisman (e.g. 3 ribs on the Sphinx) and their connection to tarot card symbolism or other alphanumeric codes (3 is the number of the “Empress” card). There are many passages in the “authentication report” like this:
[T]here are 114 gemstones plus the quartz crystal sphinx. This can be expressed as “114 +1”. The centered “14” represents the 14th letter of the alphabet, “N” for Napoleon. There is a “1” on each side of the “14” (1-14-1). 1+1 = “2” for the second letter of the alphabet, “B” for “Bonaparte”. Thus, the sum of all the jewels of this work of art is coded “Napoleon Bonaparte”.
Based on the crystal sphinx’s pinhole eyes, Jenson further suggests that the famous neoclassical sculptor Jean-Antoine Houdon may have been involved in its production. He also thinks the face of the sphinx was probably inspired by Leonardo da Vinci. mona-lisa.
After detours in the tradition of Dan Brown The “Da Vinci Code” and the Rosicrucian symbolism of the original 13 colonies, the FAQ section of the document includes the following question, which might also concern you now: “Are there historical records that link this jeweled sphinx to Napoleon Bonaparte?”
Answer: “None that have been found. It stands to reason that any documentation relating to the creation of Napoleon’s Talisman would have been intentionally destroyed to preserve its secrets.
Given the lack of documentary evidence, what makes Jensen so sure he has the goods, then?
Aside from Pat Boone, Jensen has a few other experts on his side. One of them quoted in the report is “Stephen S. Mehler, MA”, director of the self-directed research project Land of Osiris and author of a book which claims that the pyramids served as transmitters of energy rather than fallen down. He says he is convinced.
Another is mathematician Shih-Chuan Cheng of Creighton University in Omaha, who runs the odds that the many numerology and tarot references Jensen found are coincidences, and states that it is a statistical impossibility. (The official Talisman website notes, “As a hard science, mathematics, though rarely used in verification art, is an important part of any good business and an essential cornerstone of banking and finance. “)
Finally, based on this probability analysis, a third expert, attorney David C. Nelson, provides a letter to say that the authenticity of the Talisman would be defended in court. In fact, Nelson’s claim is bigger than that, potentially revolutionizing the field of art authentication as a whole. He opines that “mathematical certainty has replaced the need for provenance to authenticate an antiquity”.
As for the very expensive $150-250 million valuation, where does that come from? “Several specialists”
An interview in sponsored content with the “Napoleon’s Talisman team” on the site of Barnabas magazine asks how they arrived at such a sum. The answer comes down to the fact that people who watched it called it “priceless”, and Napoleon is very famous:
Ask someone right now: who is the prime minister of (name a country) and they probably won’t know! Ask them who was the most famous emperor in French history and you’ll get an immediate answer!
This talisman is unique. There’s only one like that. And he has a personal connection to Napoleon that has no equal. Only one person, museum, organization or corporation on this planet will be able to claim this incredibly rare antiquity. It is an investment that can only increase in value.
Finally, besides the mathematical certainty of being associated with Napoleon, is there a other reason to covet this artifact, if you’re the kind of person with a quarter billion dollars to let go?
Why yes-yes!-there is. Another online video shows that Napoleon believed in luck and that every owner of the Talisman has always been lucky, from Napoleon conquering most of Europe to G. Randall Jensen himself becoming “the stick-in golfer”. most titled wood of his era.”
It remains to be seen if the mysterious Talisman’s luck powers will help Jensen achieve his jaw-dropping bidding hopes. So far, he’s attracted a bit of buzz in the jewelry community (see this video from Gemstones.com for an idea), but few who are willing to take Jenson’s heterodox methods at face value.
The Talisman is being showcased at a special invitation-only event at the PGA National Resort in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. In addition to Pat Boone, a host of famous golfers will be on hand, including Jack Nicklaus, who is quoted in a press release about the event as saying, “I found the [talisman] Fascinating story, including its links to golf and golf history.
And that sums it up. Whatever happens, what a story!
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