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Impression: Freer Gallery of Art
Freer Gallery of Art
Number: 7
Date: 1857/1858
Medium: etching
Size: 119 x 81 mm
Signed: 'J.W' at lower left (1-2); 'Whistler' lower right (2); both removed (3); 'Whistler' lower left (4-final)
Inscribed: 'Imp. Delatre. Rue St. Jacques. 171.' at lower right (4-final); 'Annie' at bottom (6-final)
Set/Publication: 'French Set', 1858
No. of States: 7
Known impressions: 55
Catalogues: K.10; M.8; T.10; W.15
Impressions taken from this plate  (55)


The first state was lightly etched, and the figure was radically changed by the removal of the legs, becoming a three-quarter length portrait, and becoming more solid and three-dimensional in the second state. There are areas of foul biting on either side of the figure that appear to function compositionally as shadows in several states. More pronounced marks appear below the figure in the fifth state. These spots seem to be the result of corrosion on the plate surface rather than accidents in biting the plate. The shadowy foul biting around the upper part of the figure and the corrosion marks at lower left and right are removed in the final state.
This portrait was drawn in the Hadens' home, but the plate was probably etched and printed mainly by Auguste Delâtre (1822-1907). It may also have been printed by Francis Seymour Haden, Sr (1818-1910), who probably had the plate in his possession when Whistler returned to Paris after convalescing in Sloane Street.
At some time in the late 1870s Whistler wrote on an impression of the final state, 'Legs not by me - the impertinent work of another -' (). However, the legs do not look any different from the previous five states; it was only in the very first state that Annie was depicted full-length. It is possible that the first state was drawn three-quarter length by Whistler and amended by Haden, with legs, before being printed, and that when Whistler got the plate back he erased Haden's work and created the second state. In fact he did not erase the legs completely but left just the top of the legs, emphasizing the detail of the garters on her stockings. This also might account for the trimming of one impression of the first state, which is trimmed well within the image at the bottom, to just below the hem of the frock (). This does not wholly account for Whistler's inscription on one impression of the final state, but it is possible that Whistler could have held a grudge against his brother-in-law for a long time, and finally decided to add the comment for the owner, Samuel Putnam Avery (1822-1904).


Over fifty impressions of Annie have been located.
It is possible that Whistler and Haden printed the later states after assisting and being instructed by Delâtre, in London.
Impressions of the first state are printed on wove plate paper or card in dark brown ink () and black ink (). A proof of the second state was printed in brown ink on cream Japan (), and of the third in brown on cream chine appliqué .().
Some twenty impressions of the fourth state as printed by Auguste Delâtre (1822-1907) are in public collections. A few are printed in brown ink (, ) but most in black ink on thin Asian paper laid down on wove paper (chine collé, i.e. , , , ). One acquired by Whistler's earliest patron, Thomas de Kay Winans (1820-1878), is in black ink on tan chine collé (). Some, however are printed on wove paper, which varies in colour from ivory () to a golden tan ().
After a single proof of the fifth state (which was bought by the British Museum in 1868), another fairly large print-run of the sixth state was produced - one of which was bought from Percy Thomas (1846-1922) by the B.M. in 1872 (). These were printed mostly in black ink, on a variety of papers, including Japanese (), laid () and wove (, ). One is in black ink on a pale green 'antique' laid () and another in brown on a pale grey laid paper with an unclear watermark, possibly 'DURHAM / SC' ()
Finally a few impressions of the seventh state were printed, one being in dark brown ink on cream laid paper with a partial 'VAN DER LEY' watermark () and the other in black on cream Japanese paper (). The former was owned by the sitter's father, Francis Seymour Haden, Sr (1818-1910), and the latter by Samuel Putnam Avery (1822-1904). He brought it to Whistler for his signature in the 1870s, and the artist wrote 'Legs not by me! / the impertinent work of another -' by whom he meant Haden.