The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Record 2 of 37

System Number: 03665
Date: [4 December 1878][1]
Author: JW
Place: [London]
Recipient: John Cossins[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler LB 11/101/1
Document Type: ALS

'Order to his servant.[3]
4. Dec. 1878.'


I want [you] to go at once to Mr. Rossettis[4] and ask with my compliments for the Carlyle engraving[5] that Mr Watts[6] took to show him -

I want it immediately here -

Above all take a couple of the etching boards and paper to put it in and see that it does not get wet

J A McN. Whistler

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [4 December 1878]
Dated from note by C. A. Howell; see below.

2.  John
John Cossins, JW's valet [more].

3.  C. A. Howell
The annotations 'Order to ... 1878' were written by Charles Augustus ('Owl') Howell (1840? - d.1890), entrepreneur [more], and the letter was kept by Howell in an album which was later retrieved by JW.

4.  Mr. Rossettis
Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882), artist and poet [more].

5.  Carlyle engraving
Charles Augustus ('Owl') Howell (1840? - d.1890), entrepreneur [more], had acquired the copyright of Arrangement in Grey and Black, No. 2: Portrait of Thomas Carlyle (YMSM 137), for £80 and six proofs. He organised subscriptions for the engraving by Richard Josey (1840-1906), reproductive engraver [more], which were published by H. Graves and Co. (see #02785). The first proofs were delivered on 2 December 1878 (Pennell, Elizabeth Robins, and Joseph Pennell, The Life of James McNeill Whistler, 2 vols, London and Philadelphia, 1908, I, pp. 226-27).

6.  Mr Watts
This was probably Walter Theodore Watts (later Watts-Dunton) (1832-1914), solicitor, novelist and poet [more]. Alternatively, it could have been George Frederick Watts (1817-1904), painter and sculptor [more].