UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 10814
Date: [10/12 November 1899][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: William Heinemann[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 11/970-971
Document Type: TLc


Hotel Chatham -

Tuesday evg

Telegraph Chathamel[3]

I am biting my thumbs with vexation to think that I left that miserable smudge in the "Bookman[4]" (by the man that Russell[5] was bringing out) to your mercy! You said, "Leave him to me! I will write myself to Russell and tell him how abominable it is that this shameful thing should appear as the portrait of a distinguished man like Mr. Whistler," and straightaway, mon bon ami, you forgot all about it!! -

And now Russell is bringing out a portfolio by this wretched person! -

A portfolio of "Lithographs!!" by Mr. Ernest Haskell[6]! - and of course the portrait of Mr. Whistler will be in it - and doubtless the most solemnly accepted bit in the whole collection! -

Voilà! -

The really amusing thing of it all, is that so absolutely is it believed, in good faith, to be without reproach, and bona fide as a work especially pleasing, that the absurd man himself writes to me, in the pride of his achievement, asking me to let him dedicate the book to me!!! - He tells me, brimming over with happiness, that "Mr. Russell, the publisher of the Baronet & Butterfly[7]" brings it out! - I don't see now what you are going to do with a state of things like this! Russel [sic] of course is hopeless - unless you cable to him at once to withdraw from (p. 2) publication immediately shameful smudge called portrait of Mr. Whistler by Ernest Haskell. -

Do let me know to-morrow that you have done this -

I have heard nothing from you for such a time, and Mr. Gilmour[8] tells me that you have left Whitehall Court!!! and gone? Why have you said nothing? - and why have you not answered my charming letters?

'Nov. 99.'


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Notes:

1.  [10/12 November 1899]
Dated 'Nov. 99.' by the recipient at the end of the letter. Dated by the reference to Heinemann's move from Whitehall Court; this letter appears to precede another letter to Heinemann, [14 November 1899], #08587.

2.  William Heinemann
William Heinemann (1863-1920), publisher [more].

3.  CHATHAMEL
Triple underlined.

4.  Bookman
A review of Whistler, James McNeill, Eden versus Whistler: The Baronet and the Butterfly. A Valentine with a Verdict, Paris and New York, 1899 [GM, A.24] in The Bookman, New York, August 1899, which contained a portrait of JW by Ernest Haskell (1876-1925), printmaker and painter of landscapes and portraits [more]; see JW's letter to Heinemann, #10814.

5.  Russell
Robert Howard Russell, writer, journalist and publisher [more].

6.  Mr. Ernest Haskell
Ernest Haskell (1876-1925), printmaker and painter of landscapes and portraits [more]. Haskell's head and shoulders portrait of JW was recognisable, a gentle caricature probably intended to be complimentary (see JW's earlier letter to Heinemann, #08522).

7.  Baronet & Butterfly
Whistler, James McNeill, Eden versus Whistler: The Baronet and the Butterfly. A Valentine with a Verdict, Paris and New York, 1899 [GM, A.24].

8.  Mr. Gilmour
J. W. Gilmer, employee or associate of William Heinemann [more].