Royall Tyler to Robert Woods Bliss, December 26, 1913
21, Quai de Bourbon
26. December 1913.Friday.
My dear Robert—
I was delighted to get your affirmative cable.See letter of December 3, 1913, at the bottom of which, in Mildred Barnes Bliss's handwriting: "Yes blessings Dec 20 / Milrob." I felt quite sure this delay was owing to your absence in some very out of the way place,See postscript of letter of December 3, 1913: "I have just telephoned to Miss Amboul, who says you may have sailed already!" and had no great difficulty in making Brummer wait.See letter of December 3, 1913: "I had trouble enough to get Brummer to agree to wait even ten days"; that is, ten days from December 3, 1913. The things are yours for 26,000 francs, from which sum shall be deducted the price I pay for the pieces I take.Among the pieces that the Blisses acquired and which remain in the Pre-Columbian Collection at Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection are fourteen gold feline faces (PC.B.444), a gold cup (PC.B.445), a gold bird ornament (PC.B.469), a silver standing male figure (PC.B.474), and six silver ornaments in the shape of birds (PC.B.475).
I am sending you a list of the entire collection, with the price of each object as approximately as Brummer can get it. I put a X against three objects I have chosen; and when you come I would very much like to be allowed to choose a few more less important things among those for which you and Mildred care less. One of my three pieces—the round low gold cup—is important and unique but I trust you will not mind my bagging it as you have another gold cup—with birds on it.PC.B.445. Looking again at the collection, I congratulate you and myself. I truly believe it is the greatest bargain ever seen, the things are indescribably magnificent. Brummer showed me his bill of sale, of which I have no reason at all to doubt the authenticity, and according to which he is only making a little over 10% on the deal, counting Stoclet’s purchase as well. But still he is relieved of further expense and anxiety, and as he is anxious not to sell to the trade he hasn’t enough private customers to make it at all certain that he would sell all the things off at once piece by piece. I don’t know when you are coming back; but I think it would be a good thing if you could send Brummer something on account, at any rate, immediately.
The time will seem endless till I can see you with the things—you and Mildred. I believe you will not think I have paid too much. Give Mildred my and Elisina’s dearest love—and accept it yourself, with all our best wishes for 1914.