Royall Tyler to Mildred Barnes Bliss, May 3, 1927
In the train, 3 May 27Tuesday.
The sorrow of seeing you go away so far, dearest Mildred, is much softened by the memory of the heavenly day we spent together. I still glow, and shall go on glowing until I am once more able to bask in those beloved beams. Please let me know exactly what your itinerary is to be, so that I may follow you in mind.Robert Woods Bliss was officially appointed U.S. ambassador extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to Argentina on February 17, 1927. His appointment as envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to Sweden ended on March 15, 1927. The Blisses sailed from New York City for Buenos Aires on August 13, 1927. See letter of July 17, 1927, and Washington, D.C., and Stockholm (1920–1927): An Introduction.
On the way to the station I went to see Platt.Probably Clément Platt (1874–1952), an antiquities and coins dealer who in 1906 founded the Maison Platt in Paris. The business was continued by his son, Marcel Platt, in association with René Kampmann (d. 1977). I don’t much care for his bone horse, and he hasn’t much else besides coins, at present. Some pre-dynastic slates, nothing beside Brummer, Ernest’s.
The more I think over Brummer’s black diorite Old Empire head, the more it sinks into me. Do see it again I feel pretty sure it’s first rate, and it’s of extreme rarity, I don’t think it’s dear at the price mentioned. As for the Tunic,Although in a later letter of March 14, 1931, Royall Tyler states that this textile is in the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., it is a tunic inscribed with the name of the Buyid Bahāʾ-al-dawla, ca. 1000 CE, from the Naqqāraḵāna of Ray, which is now in the Textile Museum, Washington, D.C., acc. no. 3.116. See Arthur Upham Pope, A Survey of Persian Art, from Prehistoric Times to the Present (London: Oxford University Press, 1938–1939), 3:2009, 2031, no. 12. See also letters of November 22, 1926; November 26, 1926; November 30, 1926 ; December 21, 1926; and January 7, 1927 . you know how I feel. Do try and find time to go to the Louvre and see the Old Empire things, in the light of the diorite head. And do look at their hard-stone vases, and let me know whether you want me to grab for you any really superlative ones that may turn up. If you really like them, now’s the time, for there are still some to be had, but not very many, and they’re still cheap.
Guerson,Salomon Guerson (1872–1970), a Turkish antiquities dealer from Istanbul who had settled in Paris. He primarily traded in antique carpets and tapestries at his shop at 169, Boulevard Haussmann, but in the 1920s he also acquired manuscripts, including the Archimedes Palimpsest, from the Metochion Monastery of the Holy Sepulcher in Istanbul, presently on loan to the Walters Art Museum. Bd Hausmann on the same side as Bacri and higher up towards the Etoile, had a very pretty latish (Xlth and Xllth) Byz. painted M.S.The manuscript referenced by Royall Tyler is unknown. It is now known that Salomon Guerson altered manuscripts that he had acquired, supplying forged miniatures in some and removing folios from others, including the Archimedes Palimpsest, presently on loan to the Walters Art Museum. In the 1920s, Guerson acquired at least six codices that came from the Metochion (dependency) of the Holy Sepulchre in Constantinople. Four detached evangelist miniatures from Metochion 490 (Duke University Library, Durham, North Carolina, MS Gr. 84) are in the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, Virginia, inv. 68.16.4. See John Lowden, “The Strange and Eventful History of the Archimedes Palimpsest,” in The Archimedes Palimpsest, ed. Reviel Netz et al., (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011), 1:105–25. I don’t know whether he still has it.
Tell Robert, please, that the figures in any wire he gets from me about prices will be in pounds sterling, but I shall only give the figure in the text, and not mention pounds.
Hayford Peirce was most grateful for your most kind and dear reception of him. He’s a good, stalwart product of Bangor, Maine.