The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Vielé-Griffin, Francis
Record 19 of 65

System Number: 07804
Date: [10/17 April 1895][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: Joseph Pennell[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 272/2/1
Document Type: ALS

110. Rue du Bac - Paris -

My dear Joseph -

I hear from Fisher Unwin[3] who was present that you were splendid the other night at the Hogarth[4] and wiped the floor with what is left of Master Moore[5]! - I am enchanted with you - And now let me say that I have all along meant to write to you and tell you how things have been going on in this battle - or rather these two absolutely separate and quite independent affairs - Doubtless you have seen from time to time many of the papers - and have read my letters in the Pall Mall[6] - But then again [p. 2] you have missed some of them - and I should like you to have them in their sequence - when you will see how the story, as who should say, unwinds itself and the beautiful truth prevails -

That is what I call artistic! - and you, know my dear Joseph that this recorded matter should be, I think, as much a work of art as any etching - or there would be no excuse for the painter in using the pen for other than the purpose of giving you a drawing! -

Well then there was the Eden[7] case - a propos of which I am now sending you an interview in the "Journal" - This I think you will find as clear as a bell - Though as far as that is concerned I fancy that my answer to "Q. C." in the Pall Mall[8], contained also the whole business in its most concentrated form - Did you happen to see that? The law for the painter and Cobler[9]? - I sent you by the way, some time ago, a couple of French papers -The Figaro, with the "Proces verbal" as it is called here of the George Moore affair - and le Journal with a very good thing, by Octave Mirbeau[10], called "Le portrait de sa femme" - Did you get those? -

Then came Mr Moore's Interview in the Daily Chronicle[11] - in which with the intention of misleading the people, he told lie after lie -

Now today I am sending you by this same post the "Independance Belge". with the complete letter from my two seconds[12], in answer to Mr Moore's interview - The Times and the Chronicle[13] of the 9th, gave it in portions - The Times behaved well about it - and the Chronicle miserably - especially when you think that I took no end of trouble to get for that pleasant paper the etching from Huish[14]! - and when moreover you remember that in return they opened their columns to Mr Moore's panic stricken ribald filth! -

Don't you think it would be nice to take the Independance Belge to the Hogarth Club? and have it well laid upon the table?! -

You might write us an account of the occasion when you do this! - and in short we would be delighted [p. 3] to read a letter from you with all the news -

When are you coming? It ought to be about your time -

With our kindest regards and many messages to your wife[15] and yourself

Always Yours

J McN Whistler

I may tell you that it is my intention to lay the whole matter before the Committee of the Hogarth Club.

[butterfly signature]

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [10/17 April 1895]
Dated by the reference to a letter published on 9 April 1895 (see below) and the year '[1895]' written in another hand at the top of p. 1.

2.  Joseph Pennell
Joseph Pennell (1860-1926), printer and illustrator, JW's biographer [more]. See also JW's next letter to Pennell, #07805.

3.  Fisher Unwin
Thomas Fisher Unwin (1848-1935), publisher [more].

4.  Hogarth
A private club for artists and art lovers.

5.  Master Moore
George Moore (1852-1933), novelist and art critic [more].

6.  letters in the Pall Mall
See #11020, #13732, #11019.

7.  Eden
Frederick Morton Eden (1829-1917), Barrister [more].

8.  answer to "Q. C." in the Pall Mall
See the letter from F. M. Eden to the Pall Mall Gazette, [8 March 1895], #13197, and JW's letter to the Pall Mall Gazette, [11 March 1895], #11019.

9.  Cobler
JW sometimes referred to himself as a 'Cobbler', meaning a craftsman.

10.  Octave Mirbeau
Octave Mirbeau (1848-1917), novelist, art critic and amateur painter [more].

11.  Mr Moore's Interview in the Daily Chronicle
An interview with George Moore published as 'A Picture and a Challenge. The Strange Story of Mr. Whistler and Mr. Moore', Daily Chronicle, 29 March 1895, was condensed and retold in 'The Gentle Art of Duelling. Mr. Whistler and Mr. Moore', Westminster Gazette, 29 March 1895.

12.  letter from my two seconds
Francis Vielé-Griffin (1863/1864-1937), poet [more], and Octave Mirbeau to George Moore, 15 March 1895, #04081.

13.  The Times and the Chronicle
The letter from Octave Mirbeau (1848-1917), novelist, art critic and amateur painter [more], and Francis Vielé-Griffin (1863/1864-1937), poet [more], to G. Moore (15 March 1895, #04081), originally published in L'Indépendence Belge, was translated and excerpts published in The Times, 9 April 1895.

14.  Huish
Marcus Bourne Huish (1843 - d.1921), barrister, writer and art dealer, Director of the Fine Art Society [more].

15.  your wife
Elizabeth Robins Pennell (1855-1936), née Robins, JW's biographer [more].