The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: marriage (JW and BW)
Record 5 of 57

System Number: 06839
Date: 11 July [1888][1]
Author: JW
Place: [London]
Recipient: [none]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W828
Document Type: AD

It is a flame, an ardour of the mind,
Dead in the proper corpse, quick in another's;
Transfers the lover into the beloved. -
That he or she that loves, engraves or stamps
The idea of what they love, first in themselves;
Or like to glasses, so their minds take in
The forms of their beloved, and them reflect.
It is the likeness of affection -
Ben Jonson[2].
11. July -

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1.  11 July [1888]
The context may be JW's approaching marriage to Beatrix Whistler (1857-1896), née Beatrice Philip, artist [more] on 11 August 1888.

2.  Ben Jonson
Ben Jonson (1572-1637), dramatist and poet [more]. The quotation is from the play The New Inn or The Light Heart, Act 3 Scene 2, lines 114-121. JW's transcription has several small textual and punctuation differences from the play as published by Oxford University Press and edited by Margaret Jane Kidnie (B. Jonson, The Devil is an Ass and Other Plays, Oxford, 2000): 'It is a flame and ardour of the mind / ... The he or she that loves ... / ... It is the likeness of the affections / Is both the parent and the nurse of love.'