UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: politics, anarchism
Record 2 of 2

System Number: 07968
Date: [20 February 1894?][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: Otto Goldschmidt[2]
Place: [Paris]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 1/38/1
Document Type: ALS


110. Rue du Bac. -

Tuesday -

My dear Goldschmidt -

Very plucky[3] of you to go and put up at the Hotel Terminus! -

I don't know though - upon reflection - it is perhaps the very safest spot in Paris just now - so well watched I supposed -

For my part a little healthy American lynching would be the proper thing for these scoundrels - But I should begin [p. 2] by seizing the preachers & philosophers who do the mischief and keep out of danger -

I think our friend William Morris[4] in London is more or less one of them! -

Very nice of Sarasate[5] & you to wish to keep places for us - and as you know we should be only too glad to see you both & be present at all his amazing playing - but alas! tomorrow & also on the 27th we have some people here -

You will both have to come here some day notwithstanding the distance! Tell Sarasate that otherwise I shall believe that he has gone over to the Enemy! - for I heard that he has been staying with Alma Tadema[6] !!! - ???

My wife[7] says will you both come to déjeuner on Sunday next at 12- o'clock? or would you find it less difficult for your engagements to dine some day at 8. o'clock? - [p. 3] Personally I should like to have a little talk with you - Will you come one morning here at 9.30 - or 10 - Say Saturday next -

or better still come down at about 6. o'clock or half past & have tea -

Always sincerely

J McN. Whistler


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Notes:

1.  [20 February 1894?]
Dated from the reference to bombing, (see below) and to 'the 27th', and 'Tuesday'; the copyist noted that the postmark was 'indistinct either 21st Feb. or March 1894'. 20 February was a Tuesday .

2.  Otto Goldschmidt
Otto Goldschmidt (1829-1907), pianist, conductor, composer and impresario [more].

3.  Very plucky
Rosalind Birnie Philip (1873-1958), JW's sister-in-law [more], notes on her copy of this letter 'After the explosion of dynamite'. On 12 February 1894, Émile Henry (1872-1894), anarchist and advocate of 'propaganda by deed' [more], left a bomb in the Café Terminus, near the Gare St Lazare, killing one and injuring at least seventeen people. He was arrested and guillotined on 21 May 1894. See Sweetman, D., Explosive Acts, New York, 1999.

4.  William Morris
William Morris (1834-1896), painter, designer, poet and socialist [more].

5.  Sarasate
Pablo de Sarasate y Navascues (1844-1908), violinist [more].

6.  Alma Tadema
Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1836-1912), painter [more]. Tadema is double underlined.

7.  My wife
Beatrix Whistler (1857-1896), née Beatrice Philip, artist [more].