The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 07390
Date: [8 April 1881][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: Walter Théodore Watts-Dunton[2]
Place: London
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W1378
Document Type: ALS

[roundel with head of Leonardo]


My dear Watts -

read the enclosed[4] - and you will see what an infernal game those two scoundrels Haden[5] & Legros[6] attempted to play[7] - But I fancy I have pretty well stamped them out - Also I may tell you that I rushed accross [sic] Bond St on the eveg. in question and if I had found Master [p. 2] Haden or& Master Legros, I should have made them swallow the stick I had with me or have been pretty well killed myself! -

Write me a line and tell me what you think about it -

Ever Yours

J A McN Whistler

28. Wimpole Street

This document is protected by copyright.


Theodore Watts Esq
care of D. G. Rossetti[8] Esq No. 2
16 - Cheyne Walk The Pines
Chelsea Putney Hill
[postmark:] LONDON W / 7 / AP 8 / 81

[on verso flap:] ARTS CLUB,


1.  [8 April 1881]
Dated from postmark.

2.  Walter Théodore Watts-Dunton
Walter Theodore Watts (later Watts-Dunton) (1832-1914), solicitor, novelist and poet [more].

The adress is embossed, as is the one on the envelope flap.

4.  enclosed
The enclosure is a printed sheet of paper containing three letters (that may be viewed at #01131, #01944, and #13147). On the reverse of this sheet has been pencilled the word 'Whistler'.

5.  Haden
Francis Seymour Haden (1818-1910), surgeon and etcher, JW's brother-in-law [more].

6.  Legros
Alphonse Legros (1837-1911), painter, etcher and art teacher [more].

7.  play
This relates to an incident between JW and the newly formed Painter Etchers' Society. In the spring of 1881, the Society held an exhibition at the Hanover Gallery. However, when Frank Duveneck (1848-1919), painter, etcher and art teacher [more], submitted three Venice etchings, Haden (who was President of the Society) suspected that they were in fact by JW. Anxious to compare the etchings with those that JW had been printing for the Fine Art Society, Haden, Alphonse Legros and Dr Edward Hamilton (1815 or 1816-1903), doctor of medicine and print collector [more] paid a visit to the Society's gallery. JW was indignant when he heard of the visit, regarding it as an attack on his artistic integrity. A lengthy correspondence ensued which was eventually published in the form of a pamphlet (Whistler, James McNeill, The Piker Papers. The Painter-Etchers' Society and Mr. Whistler, London, 1881).

8.  D. G. Rossetti
Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882), artist and poet [more].