The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Documents associated with: 4th [Exhibition], Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Paris, 1894
Record 9 of 35

System Number: 02692
Date: [11 April 1894?][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: James Alfred Chapman[2]
Place: [Paris?]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler LB 1/181
Document Type: ALcS

110. Rue du Bac.

Thursday -

You are, my good Jack, so serenely thoughtless of evil, in your smiling approach, that one must fain put aside one's first notion of cool impudence, and accept the beautiful naiveté of the business man, to whom, in life, it never occurs by any chance occurs that mere complete breach of faith should possibly enter as a disturbing element in his friendly relations!

On the last occasion of our meeting you gave me your word that I should have for the Salon[3], the pictures I asked you to lend me -

I naturally never dreamed of doubting you - and allowed the titles to go into the Official Catalogue.

Whereupon you immediately gave "other instructions" to the people in London: - without, I daresay, any more sense of moral dereliction there [sic] could possibly have been grain of malice -

But here we were all left in extreme bewilderment & difficulty -

These things may be with you, in your guilessness, as nothing! - nevertheless they put distinguished people to great discomfort - and bring upon you surprises like the present one -

Adieu my dear Jack - You mean well, & I think you will be happier dining all among yourselves -

J McN Whistler

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1.  11 April 1894?
This letter appears in the letterbook sequence between letters from JW to E. Morris, #02691, and M. H. Spielmann to JW, #12671. It has been dated from JW's reference to the Salon, and Chapman's reply of 12 April 1894, #00585.

2.  James Alfred Chapman
Alfred Chapman (1839-1917), engineer and collector [more].

3.  Salon
4th Exhibition, Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Paris, 1894. According to the catalogue, Chapman's works, (his collection included Nocturne: Blue and Gold - Southampton Water (YMSM 117)), do not appear to have been exhibited.