The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Record 5 of 496

System Number: 09505
Date: [16/20 August 1863?][1]
Author: JW
Place: Rotterdam
Recipient: Carel Vosmaer[2]
Place: [The Hague]
Repository: Private Collection
Document Type: AL[3]

Rotterdam en route pour Londres

Mon cher Monsieur Vosmar [sic] -

Au dernier moment j'ai eu tant de choses a [sic] faire que j'ai été forcé finalement de partir directement pour Rotterdam, n'ayant plus le temps de m'arreter à la Haye - de sorte que je suis maintenant obligé de vous faire mes adieux par lettre, aulieu d'avoir le plaisir de vous serrer la main en passant - Enfin j'espere revenir en Hollande[4] d'içi deux mois. Ma visite à [sic] été charmante, et je n'oublirai jamais l'aimable acceuil qu'on m'a fait partout - Donc je vous dis Au revoir et à bientot - En attendant si vous venez à Londres, gardez bien mon adresse [...]

[p. 2, sketches[5] of a horse, a man wearing a cap, and a woman walking on a beach with sailing ships out at sea]

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Rotterdam en route to London

My dear Mr Vosmar

At the last moment I had so much to do that finally I had to leave directly for Rotterdam, not having enough time to stop at the Hague - so that I now have to say my goodbyes by letter, instead of having the pleasure of shaking your hand in passing - Well I hope to return to Holland in two months' time. My visit was delightful, and I shall never forget the kind welcome I was given everywhere - So I say Goodbye and I hope to see you soon - Meanwhile if you come to London, keep my address safely [...]


1.  16/20 August 1863?
JW visited Holland in the autumn of 1863 to attend Tentoonstelling van Kunstwerken van Levende Meesters, Hague School of Art, Princessegracht. He was awarded a gold medal for his twelve etchings representing 'figures and faces of London and on the banks of the Thames' (Heijbroek, J. F. and Margaret F. MacDonald, Whistler and Holland, Zwolle and Amsterdam, 1997, pp. 49-50). His bill on leaving the Hotel des Pays Bas in Amsterdam was dated 16 August (#00159).

2.  Carel Vosmaer
Carel Vosmaer (1826-1888), etcher and writer on art [more]. He was secretary of the Tentoonstelling van Kunstwerken van Levende Meesters, Hague School of Art, Princessegracht, 1863.

3.  AL
It is likely that this letter of thanks was originally signed, but the manuscript is no longer complete.

4.  revenir en Hollande
JW possibly planned to visit Rotterdam for an exhibition there (see #01948).

5.  sketches
These drawings are in another hand. The woman is wearing a straw hat and a dress with a slight train, probably worn over a crinoline.