The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 09858
Date: [18/24 February 1881][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: John Everett Millais[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: The Pierpont Morgan Library, New York
Call Number: MA 1485 K768
Document Type: ALS[3]

How very nice in you my dear Millais to write to me, in the midst of all your own absorbing preocupation[4] [sic], such a charming little letter about my work[5]. -

I was highly pleased I can assure you - and looked for you yesterday in your room to tell you so -

Why were you not there to see what a complete success was yours? - The only regret I had was at the absence of that superb portrait of Mrs Jopling[6]. -

Always, my dear Millais,
Very Sincerely Yours

J. A. McN. Whistler

28 Wimpole Street.

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1.  [18/24 February 1881]
This is a reply to a letter from J. E. Millais to JW dated 17 February 1881 (#04078).

2.  John Everett Millais
John Everett Millais (1829-1896), artist [more].

3.  ALS
The paper has a mourning border.

4.  absorbing preocupation
The Collected Work of John Everett Millais, a retrospective exhibition, organised by Joseph Middlemore Jopling (1831-1884), painter [more], had opened at the Fine Art Society in February 1881. The works included Alfred Tennyson, which had been commissioned by the Society (see Funnell, Peter, Malcolm Warner, Millais Portraits, exhibition catalogue, National Portrait Gallery, London, 1999, p. 171).

5.  letter about my work
Whistler's exhibition, Venice Pastels, The Fine Art Society, London, 1881, had opened on 29 January, overlapping with Millais' show (see Millais' letter,#04078).

6.  Mrs Jopling
J. E. Millais, Mrs Louise Jopling (z47), 1879, National Portrait Gallery. The portrait was first exhibited at the Royal Academy in May 1879 (see Funnell, op. cit.). JW had painted Harmony in Flesh Colour and Black: Portrait of Mrs Louise Jopling (YMSM 191) in 1877.