Detail from The Canal, Amsterdam, 1889, James McNeill Whistler, The Hunterian, University of Glasgow

Home > Catalogue > Browse > Portrait of a Boy <<   >>

Portrait of a Boy

Portrait of a Boy dates from 1876. 1

On 10 April 1876 the New York Herald described among Whistler's current works 'the portrait of a lovely boy with large, earnest eyes and waving hair.' 2

On 11 January 1877 Alan Summerly Cole (1846-1934) noted in his diary 'With J. who showed a portrait of small fair haired boy.' 3

It is also possible that this was the painting referred to as a 'full length portrait of a lad', treated by the picture liner William Morrill (b. ca 1839), who sent Whistler his bill in March 1879. 4

Furthermore, it is possible that the portraits described by the New York Herald, Alan S. Cole, and William Morrill were one and the same work.


1: YMSM 1980 [more] (cat. no. 177).

2: 'American Artists in London, What they have done for Philadelphia', New York Herald, New York, 10 April 1876, p. 5. Press cutting in GUL Whistler PC 2, p. 2.

3: Copies, GUW #13132, #03432.

4: [29 March 1879], GUW #08945.

Last updated: 3rd April 2020 by Margaret