The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Whistler, Helen
Record 32 of 149

System Number: 06701
Date: [7 May 1883][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: Helen Euphrosyne Whistler[2]
Place: London
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W695
Document Type: ALS

My dear Nellie -

Do be very nice and listen for a moment - This is what I want you to do for me -

You know I had a capital piano from the Chappells[3] - this I sent back some time since - and paid the bill - enormous - only there remained a few shillings for the carriage of the thing that I refused - upon the principle [p. 2] that the custom was a foolish and pernicious one - acceeded [sic] to by a weak and unthinking public - consequently I suppose that I am rather in en delicatesse with that firm -

Will you not go out on a little voyage of discovery and choose for me an upright piano? of first rate tone and in short all that it should be, at whatever it ought to be a month, and have it sent down to the Studio[4] in Tite Street before Saturday -

I hope this wont bore you and I shall be so much obliged to you -

Also if you come upon a couple of little arm chairs and small sofa - simple - the kind that I might have covered with brown Holland or other - you might make a note of it and let me know so that I could in a hurry if I am "forced to it", send for them suddenly when I come back - which must be by the end of the week - probably Friday or Saturday morning - and whatever I require I must have for Sunday -

Everything here Amazing[5]! -

[p. 3] Will tell you about things when I return -

Love to both
Always and always in a hurry!.

[butterfly signature]

Hotel S. Romain -
Rue S. Roch
Paris -

You might write a line by return -

This document is protected by copyright.


Mrs William Whistler
28. Wimpole Street
Cavendish Square
[stamp cut out]
[postmark:] PARIS [illegible] / 7E 7/ MY / 83
[postmark on verso:] LONDON W / T 7 / MY 8 / 83

[blue oval seal:] HOTEL ST ROMAIN / RUE ST ROCH / 5 & 7 / PARIS


1.  [7 May 1883]
Dated from postmark.

2.  Helen Euphrosyne Whistler
Helen ('Nellie') Euphrosyne Whistler (1849-1917), née Ellen Ionides, JW's sister-in-law [more].

3.  Chappells
Chappell and Co., a London firm of piano manufacturers and music publishers, were located at 49-52 New Bond Street.

4.  Studio
JW was then living at 13, Tite Street.

5.  Amazing
JW had recently sent Arrangement in Grey and Black: Portrait of the Painter's Mother (YMSM 101) to Paris where it was exhibited at 101st exhibition, Ouvrages de peinture, sculpture, architecture, gravure et lithographie des artistes vivants, Palais des Champs Elysées, Paris, 1883 (cat. no. 2441). The picture was well received and JW received a third-class medal. Another exhibition, Exposition Internationale de Peinture, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, 1883, was about to open to which JW sent works including Nocturne: Blue and Gold - Southampton Water (YMSM 117).