The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Paddon, Samuel Wreford
Record 13 of 36

System Number: 04367
Date: 27 March 1882
Author: Samuel Wreford Paddon[1]
Place: Surrey
Recipient: JW
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler P6
Document Type: ALS[2]

[tower motif]


27 March 1882.

Dear Whistler,

You say that you hate long letters; so do I -

Howell[3] sent me down a week since a mass of correspondence from you covering nearly twenty years and if I may be allowed to express an opinion [,] your letters to me respecting him are scarcely a fitting sequel, but that of course is your own affair and not mine -

You show your hand so clearly in your last letter that it is quite unnecessary [p. 2] for me to reply to it -

In talking to some one on Friday last about the "Beaconsfield" matter[4], I was met by the answer "Why I was present on one occasion when Howell speaking to Mr Jack MacNay[5] referred to Mewburn[6] as ["]Beaconsfield"!

No, I have not found you at all dull, but so far an interesting study, but now I should like you to understand very clearly that nothing that you can say will prejudice my opinion of Howell -

I am sure you will give me credit for all kindly intentions towards you when I suggest [p. 3] your carefully reading over your letters to me and asking yourself whether you do not regret the position you have taken in this matter. - why I suggest this is because although I know you are incomparable as a painter and amazing as a story teller, I think your "creations" in black and white are not a success - the lines are too hard - there is nothing whatever soft about them, and in fact as a whole they are neither harmonies nor symphonies.

Now, my dear Whistler, I do trust you will consider this affair done with

Very sincerely Yours -

S Wreford Paddon

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  Samuel Wreford Paddon
Samuel Wreford Paddon (b. 1843), diamond merchant and collector [more].

2.  ALS
This is a reply to JW to S. W. Paddon, [22 March 1882], #04366. Published in Whistler, James McNeill, Correspondence. Paddon Papers. The Owl and the Cabinet, London, [1882], Letter VI, p. 5. For full annotation of the pamphlet, see JW's letter to S. W. Paddon, 10 March 1882, #09519.

3.  Howell
Charles Augustus ('Owl') Howell (1840? - d.1890), entrepreneur [more].

4.  Beaconsfield matter
Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1882), Prime Minister of Great Britain [more]. The matter concerned Howell's rather ill-judged boast that he knew Disraeli. The incident is recorded by JW in Whistler, James McNeill, Correspondence. Paddon Papers. The Owl and the Cabinet, London, [1882].

5.  Jack MacNay
John ('Jack') Edward MacNay (1834-1893), General Manager of the Stockton and Darlington Railway [more].

6.  Mewburn
Frank F. Mewburn (b. 1820 or 1821), solicitor and collector [more].