The painting depicts Napoleon the great conqueror, and is a dedication to the Belgian's of the City of Liege, in 1803. Napoleon visited the city and saw its devastating nature after a war with Austria. He had great compassion for them and decreed 300,000 Francs to rebuild the suburb. As observed, Napoleon has a classic pose with one hand in the pocket and the other signing a decree. He is in casual wear. As it goes, modesty wasn't one of his qualities. The qualities of the loins around him, together with his dress code, are antique and at the same time, royal. Instead of the blue uniform he usually wears, he is in red. He places his sword in his jacket like a civilian, as opposed to resting his hand on it with a martial pose.
The seat behind him is embroiled beautifully, and great artistic work is displayed. The blue table cloth is made of fine linen and extends to the floor. In the modern-day, such a ruler would be considered to be very stylish. The artist painted Liege's St. Lambert's Cathedral in the background, behind the curtains. Napoleon had criticised the building of a bell tower for the cathedral, as had been ordered by église Saint-Jean-enl' Isle. The artist depicts the reconstruction of the temple by portraying it as a whole and firmly standing, while in the real sense, it was being demolished.
Dominique Ingres is inspired by the end of a conflict, as a result of the reconstruction Decree. Bonaparte Napoleon's gesture is meant to symbolise good relations between the French and the papacy. The two were in a long term conflict, which had resulted in the demolition of the temple. The resumption of good relations is not just among the clergy, but also with the suburb dwellers. The reconstruction of the suburb through the fund signed by Napoleon was a gesture of peace and good interest. First Consul is a historical painting that reminds us of the end of a war, and the relief that comes along. The King is depicted to be instrumental in alleviating conflict. The sword tucked in the jacket is a very kind gesture, especially coming from Napoleon, who had conquered many nations. No more war, he means to say. His Civilian pose puts a humanitarian face, and help has come along for the Belgians. It's such a relief.