UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: poetry
Record 12 of 59

System Number: 13589
Date: [May 1887?][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: Robert de Montesquiou-Fezensac[2]
Place: [Paris?]
Repository: Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris
Call Number: Nouv. Acq. Fr. 15335, f. 71
Document Type: ALS[3]


Je suis très touché, cher Comte, des vers exquis[4] que je reçois de vous, et que je suis fier de penser que mon travail ait pu inspirer une poésie aussi fine, un chef d'œuvre aussi délicat.

Je vous envoie l'eau-forte[5] que vous avez préférée et je vous dirais que votre choix est encore une flatterie subtile à laquelle l'artiste est tres sensible puisque distinguer la dernière œuvre, est toujours le plus beau compliment qu'on puisse lui faire, n'est-ce pas?

J. M. Whistler


This document is protected by copyright.


Translation:

I am very touched, dear Count,

at the exquisite verses I received from you, and I am proud to think that my work could have inspired such fine poetry, such a delicate masterpiece.

I am sending you the etching which you liked best and I would tell you that your choice is also a subtle flattery of which the artist is very aware since to distinguish the latest work is always the best compliment that one can make him, is it not?


Notes:

1.  [May 1887?]
Dated by reference to poems (see below).

2.  Robert de Montesquiou-Fezensac
Comte Robert de Montesquiou-Fezensac (1855-1921), Symbolist writer and poet, and collector [more].

3.  ALS
Published in Newton, Joy, La Chauve-Souris et le Papillon. Correspondance Montesquiou-Whistler, Glasgow, 1990, No. 3, pp. 40-41 as 'May 1887'. A draft version appears at #04104.

4.  vers exquis
Montesquiou sent a copy of his poem 'Nox et Lux', and later, a second copy of it, #04105.

5.  l'eau-forte
JW probably sent him Village Sweet-shop (K.251) (see Montequiou's letters to JW, 10 May 1887, #04103, and another, #04105).