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The Busby

Impression: Hunterian Art Gallery
Hunterian Art Gallery
Number: 368
Date: 1887
Medium: drypoint
Size: 217 x 128 mm
Signed: butterfly at right
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 2
Known impressions: 1
Catalogues: K.437; M.437
Impressions taken from this plate  (1)
The Busby probably dates from between 1887 and 1889.
Whistler's technique, with areas of broad parallel shading, and the butterfly, with its shaded areas, could fit within these dates.
The copper plate is close in size to four prints: York Street, Westminster 382, which dates from 1887, The Fur Cloak - Mrs Herbert 367 and Nora Quinn 364, both of 1888, and Balustrade, Luxembourg Gardens 465, which is of a later date, in the early 1890s. It is interesting that, of these, The Fur Cloak - Mrs Herbert 367 also shows a fur-based costume.
The costume - the fur bonnet in particular - can be dated to the late 1880s. It is undoubtedly a winter outfit, which suggests that the most likely dates are the winter of 1887-1888 or that of 1888-1889. However, it could obviously also be used in the 1890s. Lochnan dates the drypoint 1892-1893. 1

1: Lochnan 1984[more], p. 285, no. 442.