The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: press-review
Record 12 of 71

System Number: 04033
Date: [21/28 February 1885][1]
Author: Mortimer Luddington Menpes[2]
Place: London
Recipient: JW
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler M304
Document Type: ALS


Dear Whistler.

I should think you felt pretty good about the lecture[3][;] it was an undoubted success, far far beyond anything I could have imagined - Just at first I was a little afraid you show signs of nervousness but that soon passed away & I found myself lost in the lecture itself, never before had I fully appreciated how fine it really was - You did [p. 2] indeed look a swell & so dignified & strange to say you appeared to be much taller that than you really are - There will be [pray?] very little hope of seeing you for some days, but after the excitement & Shows various have settled down I hope to have a long talk ove[r] the whole business - In the middle of things I of course find myself in somebodys [sic] elses [sic] chair & that I had quite misunderstood your intentions, but I am sure you will quite understand whe[n] I explain that the blame was not mine -

You know only too well [p. 3] how ready I am to do anything to help you either in show games or in connection with work even if it I should have to sacrifise [sic] my little feelings, my interest in your work is much too genuine to allow myself to cause just one moment of trouble -

Poor Oscar[4] appears to be a little troubled[,] I have read his weak little article[5] in the Pall Mall[;] he is certainly not Indian, even I in a Colonial way could have advised of a better game -

I dont suppose you will ever read the whole of this scribble or rather be able to - -

But Believe me dear Whistler
Your devoted friend


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1.  [21/28 February 1885]
Dated from reference to JW's 'Ten O'Clock Lecture' (see note below).

2.  Mortimer Luddington Menpes
Mortimer Luddington Menpes (1860-1938), artist [more].

3.  lecture
A reference to JW's 'Ten O'Clock Lecture,' his major public statement of his aesthetic ideas. He delivered the lecture for the first time on 20 February 1885 at the Prince's Hall, Piccadilly. It was repeated subsequently at several other venues, including Oxford and Cambridge. A version of the text of the lecture may be found at #06791.

4.  Oscar
Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wilde (1854-1900), writer, critic and playwright [more].

5.  article
See Wilde's review of the Ten O'Clock in the Pall Mall Gazette, 21 February 1885.