What is it with Napoleon and hiding in books and papers?
The French General and Emperor, who certainly didn't have any trouble making his presence felt during his lifetime, has now been a part of two rather remarkable discoveries.
Back in 2011, popular British TV programme The Antiques Roadshow made a remarkable discovery when it was called in to assist with an evaluation of the former home of Sir Walter Scott. Inside a small handwritten note was discovered a lock of Napoleon's hair.
Now an auction is scheduled in Virginia on March 1 which will put another remarkable discovery on offer.
A couple consigned a fully leather-bound edition of The Life of Napoleon to the auction, deducing that as it was an edition of 1 of 26 volumes issued by the publisher it might have some value. But they had failed to notice a more obvious clue - it included a letter signed around 1794 by Napoleon Bonaparte!
The letter was probably dictated by the Emperor and then signed. It means that the whole lot of beautifully bound books and letter are expected to sell for $4,000-6,000, though that may prove to be an overly modest estimate.
Of course, collectors who are on the lookout for either Napoleon's hair or a letter with his autograph needn't spend hours forlornly leafing through their old books.