The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Nancy Regina Emily Bell, 1844-1933

Nationality: British
Date of Birth: 1844.09.02
Place of Birth: Lambeth, Surrey
Date of Death: 1933.08.30
Place of Death:


Nancy Regina Emily Meugens was the daughter of Pierre Joseph Meugens (b. 1808 in Belgium) and Elizabeth Caroline Bennett (b. 1807). She married Arthur George Bell, painter and illustrator. They had three children, Kenneth Norman (b. 1884 in Sutherland House, Southwold), and Eric Arthur (b. 1885) and Irene Agnes (b. 1887), both born at Mill-house, Streatley, Berkshire. Before her marriage in 1882, she wrote under the nom de plume 'N. D'Anvers', a name that was derived from her father's nationality. Later, as 'Mrs. A. G. Bell', she was a prolific writer and translator. Her husband often illustrated her work.


Her art historical works include An elementary history of painting. Old Masters; Modern (1883); An elementary history of art: architecture-sculpture (1888); Masterpieces of the Great Artists AD 1400-1700 (1893); The Student's Handbook of Art. An elementary history of art (1895); Thomas Gainsborough (1897); Representative Painters of the XIXth Century (1899); The Saints in Christian Art (1901-04); Tintoretto (1905); Paolo Veronese (1904); Architecture 1913; Mantegna 1911. Bell also wrote tourist guides, travel books, lives of saints and translated the text of James Jacques Joseph Tissot's The life of our Saviour Jesus Christ; three hundred and sixty-five compositions... (1899).

However when, in 1902, JW heard of her wish to write a popular book about him (#00273) he became bothered and refused to co-operate. Her book, James McNeill Whistler, was published after his death, in 1904.


Who Was Who, 1929-1940, London, 1941; (Bell and Montage Fanily Tree, accessed 2005).