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Rue des Bons Enfants, Tours

Impression: Hunterian Art Gallery
Hunterian Art Gallery
Number: 392
Date: 1888
Medium: etching and drypoint
Size: 149 x 80 mm
Signed: butterfly at left
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 5
Known impressions: 10
Catalogues: K.372; M.372; W.320
Impressions taken from this plate  (10)


This plate was begun in pure etching, and there were subsequent additions in both drypoint and etching. Ruth Fine commented: 'when alterations were necessary, they generally took the form, as here, of darkening the dark areas rather than of substantially changing the image in any way.' 7

7: Los Angeles 1984 (cat. no. 81).


Rue des Bons Enfants, Tours was printed very soon after the honeymoon, between late 1888 and 1889. On 18 July 1889 Whistler recorded six impressions in stock. 8 Early impressions were printed on off-white laid paper, the '1st. Proof' in black ink (). Whistler did not consider the first proof a state, and wrote '1st state' on an impression of the second state (). Both extant impressions of the second state were printed in dark brown ink ().

8: List, GUW #13235.

The third state was printed in black ink on ivory laid paper (). Two impressions of the fourth and three of the final state have been located. Two are in dark brown ink on cream laid paper (, ), one with a partial watermark (Vryhyt, ). All are trimmed to the platemark and signed on a tab with Whistler's butterfly and 'imp.' to show that he printed them.