Dorset

A single hair from Napoleon Bonaparte's head sells for £130

paper with date Image copyright Cottees Auction Ltd
Image caption The folded note dated 29 August 1816 that was kept with the single hair

A strand of hair believed to be from the head of former French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte's head has sold for £130 at auction in Dorset.

It was bought by an individual from the Dorset area in a phone bid.

A piece of paper found with the hair said "A single hair of Napoleon Bonaparte's head 29th August 1816" and "5th May 1821' - the date Napoleon died.

The strand of hair was attached to a piece of paper by red sealing wax.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of France from 1769 to 1821

Auctioneer Max Beaumont, of Cottees Auction House, Wareham, said it was found in a drawer by a colleague doing a home valuation.

He said they found a small goldsmith's box and expected to find a watch, but instead they found the folded paper.

Image copyright Cottees Auctions Limited
Image caption The single hair believed to be from Napoleon Bonaparte's head

The hair is understood to have been owned by the family for the whole of the 20th Century, but has not been professionally analysed.

The initial estimate was £100 to £200.

Mr Beaumont, who at 19 claims to be one of the youngest auctioneers in the country, said: "There has been a lot of interest."

Napoleon Bonaparte was a French emperor who conquered much of Europe. He was defeated in the Battle of Waterloo and imprisoned by the British on the remote Atlantic island of St Helena, where he died on 5 May 1821.

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