The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Royal Cortissoz, 1869-1948

Nationality: American
Date of Birth: 1869
Place of Birth: Brooklyn, New York City, NY
Date of Death: 1948.10.17
Place of Death: New York, NY


Royal Cortissoz was an author and editor.


Cortissoz was the art editor of the New York Herald Tribune from 1891. He gave JW's work a degree of publicity. Edward Guthrie Kennedy described him to JW in 1893 as 'a very intelligent young chap' [#07224]. However, he appears to have been offended by JW's lack of hospitality during a visit to Paris in 1895. Kennedy considered this to be 'a mistake, but he is a very, in fact an unusually nice chap, and as you know, bears no malice' [#07257].

During 1903, when JW was painting the portrait of the collector and gambler Richard Albert Canfield, Cortissoz wrote to Kennedy: ''Jimmy' must indeed feel rather quaint. I sympathize and dont sympathize with him. It is, to be sure, all his own fault. Yet there is no denying that at his age and with his temperament and present condition of health, the episode must be more than trying. What is the moral? Why, it seems to me, simply to show the good faith and to use the candor which he expects from others. If he had at the very outset put all the facts before you, consulted your advice, and made up his mind to act upon the latter, he would not now be wishing, as I am sure he is wishing, that either he or Canfield, preferably Canfield, had never been born' [#09865].