The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: press, journalist
Record 5 of 50

System Number: 07129
Date: [September/October 1888?][1]
Author: JW
Place: [London]
Recipient: Edmund Hodgson Yates[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W1118
Document Type: ALdS

Most amiable and impudent of Edmunds! -

It is very nice of you to write to me so promptly - and it is of the last audacity to pretend to forget that you yourself withdrew the "Orange" from under my astonished lips! -

Ask the young Atlas - he knows well, and was present in the Office, (Robson's[3]) when the salaried employé, with cold courtesy, thrust beneath the "citron wing of the pale Butterfly," the returned "copy" - !!! -

Brushed from his accustomed perch, he was forced [p. 2] to flutter foolishly through the opened pane, elsewhere to reflect in bewilderment upon this new régime of unexpected discretion, and insinuate in other type his poisoned sweetness delicate poison! -

However - who so easily won by flattery! and what flattery more soothing than the hint that one is missed! -

I shall come back Edmund - and you shall again bring out my Orange - and the sun of merry irresponsibility shall stream in at the window, and the Butterfly will remember nothing but the brave speech of the famous night "Sir Michael" was feasted[4] and Atlas was the doughty champion of his friend! -

[butterfly signature]

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1.  [September/October 1888?]
Dated primarily by signature. JW was absent from London from August 1888 for several months and this might be why JW says 'I shall come back'.

2.  Edmund Hodgson Yates
Edmund Hodgson Yates (1831-1894), novelist, 'Atlas' columnist and editor-proprietor of the World [more].

3.  Robson's
Robson, employee or journalist for the World.

4.  Sir Michael was feasted
JW's message is obscure, but he may here be referring to himself. A banquet for JW in Paris on 28 April 1888 was followed by a dinner at the Criterion on 1 May to celebrate the award of a first-class medal at Munich and the Cross of St Michael of Bavaria.