During the Italian campaign, the Republic of Venice was invaded by the troops of Napoleon; with the consequent fall of the Republic, a provisional municipal government was created which provided for the destruction of many of the symbols of Venice, including depictions of the Lion of St. Mark. St. Mark's Treasury was looted, along with the Quadriga of the Basilica and the Lion.
The Lion remained in Paris, in front of the Hôtel des Invalides, until 1815 when, during the operations for its removal, it fell and broke into many pieces.
Once back in Venice, it was restored and then placed back on the column in the Piazzetta.
The sculptor who took charge of the restoration was Bartolomeo Ferrari, who cast new wings using the fragments of the previous ones. The missing parts of the tail and of all paws, except the right hind one, were also integrated by creating an internal frame on which fragments were fixed.