The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: finance, receipt
Record 8 of 35

System Number: 08059
Date: [1868/1871][1]
Author: JW
Place: [London]
Recipient: Frances Leyland[2]
Place: [Liverpool?]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 2/16/3
Document Type: ALS

My dear Mrs Leyland -

By this same post I send small long box registered, addressed to you, the Amber beads - Now pray make no mistake and I will do my best to make it all clear to you - Before you open the box let me tell you there are three necklaces - each of the very best amber to be had at any price - beautiful in color and perfectly pure - [p. 2] Lucas Ionides[3] who is a great judge went to the shop himself and took a great deal of trouble about it - and these beads they brought out from the inner and holier hidden places for him - whereas we might have waited in the outside shop 'till now without ever seeing them!

Lucas told me that they would cost each about £15 in Constantinople, whither they go from the Baltic for the Turks and Greeks - but these people get them here direct and can sell them cheaper - He asked me 8 guineas apiece per necklace which of course is doing wonderfully well and he let me have two necklaces for fifteen pounds ten - money down - Enclosed I send you the receipted bill - so that is you see even better than 'wonderfully well' - These two necklaces are at the bottom of the box - There is also a small bit of the silver paper screwed up by itself containing 4 separate beads that he threw in to replace any that you might either at any time lose, or that you might think [not] quite so perfect already on the string - [p. 3] Now the third necklace, [(]which is the first to hand in the box) and is tied with a bit of blue ribbon, is on approval - That is if you do not think the others long enough, you can divide this third between them and I daresay Miss Caird[4] will help you restring them - The man said they should be laid down flat on the table and then the beads of third put in among those of about the same size of each of the others -

It was quite a mistake of mine about the beads of Miss Spartali's[5] being all equal in size - Lucas says they never are - and the effect would be clumsy and wrong on the neck - These are beautifully made - and will polish charmingly with an old Silk handkerchief -

If you keep the third necklace please send a line by return - It's [sic] price will be 7. pounds ten shillings - which I will at once pay -

In great haste very
Sincerely Yours

J A McN. Whistler

I will answer Miss Caird's letter tomorrow and Freddie's[6] - Love to everybody - Also the other parcel I will send in time -

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1.  Frances Leyland
Frances Leyland (1836-1910), née Dawson [more].

2.  [1868/1871]
Dated from reference to 'Miss Spartali'. Christine Spartali (1845?-1884), later Countess Edmond de Cahen [more], and Mary ('Marie') Stillman (1844-1927), née Spartali, wife of W. J. Stillman [more], were married in 1868 and 1871 respectively.

3.  Lucas Ionides
Lucas ('Luke') Alexander Ionides (1837-1924), stockbroker and businessman [more].

4.  Caird
Ellen Caird, friend of Mrs F. Leyland, possibly a sister of Sir James Caird.

5.  Spartali's
Probably Christine Spartali (1845?-1884), later Countess Edmond de Cahen [more], or Mary ('Marie') Stillman (1844-1927), née Spartali, wife of W. J. Stillman [more].

6.  Freddie's
Frederick Dawson Leyland (b. 1856), son of F. R. Leyland [more].