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Royall Tyler to Robert Woods Bliss, January 20, 1938 [2]

20.I.38 Geneva

Dear Robert.

I had a horrid shock just now when I got your cableSee telegram of January 19, 1938 [2]. saying no beltBZ.1937.33. & no spoons.BZ.1937.35–42. I at once got out DelarancherayeDe La Rancheraye et Cie., a shipping company in Paris. by ‘phone, & learned that the idiot had waited for the écrin“Case.” for the belt before shipping, tho’ I had given him plain orders to ship belt & spoons by the Newport News, & the écrin by a later boat, when ready. I’m so very sorry there’s been this delay. I’ve wired you that Delarancheraye says belt & spoons are are on the City of Havre, due to reach Baltimore the 22d inst.See telegram of January 20, 1938 [1].

Your letter of 31 Dec. reached me a couple of days ago. It’s really a superb joke on me, given my job, that I should continually get my ac/s“Accounts.” wrong.See letters of October 7, 1937; November 10, 1937; December 31, 1937; and February 1, 1938 [2]. I haven’t got them with me at the moment, but will check up on the point you raise when I get back to Bpest.

I’m glad you agree about the Guilhou-HirschÉdouard Guilhou, a Parisian collector. Jacob Hirsch (1874–1955), a German-Swiss numismatist, archaeologist, and antiquities dealer. ring.BZ.1947.15. I haven’t had time to go & see Hirsch yet, but hope to do so before I leave for Pest again end next week.

I’ve written to Juritzky, asking him to apply to insurance anything there may be left over from the Sch. 1500. After freight has been paid. I’ll try to get information as to the possible action of cold on the columns.BZ.1940.78–79. I shouldn’t think the temperatures you get at the Oaks would hurt them, for they were as good as out of doors at Gablitz,Juritzky lived in the villa “Mon Repos” in Gablitz, near Vienna. where the thermometer drops about as low as it does in Washington, sauf eerreur.

Juritzky says the columns came from Ephesus, & were brought to Vienna together with the fine 4th cent. busts from Ephesus,One of these is possibly Portrait of a Priest, Roman, marble, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg, inv. no. 1961.139. one of which is reproduced in our Vol. 2.This reference is unclear as no portrait busts are listed as coming from Ephesos in volume 2.

Yes, I remember Byk’sPaul M. Byk (1887–1946), an employee of Arnold Seligmann, Rey & Co., New York. seated Romanesque wooden Madonna.In correspondence from Paul M. Byk to Robert Woods Bliss, dated December 28, 1937, this sculpture is described as a “great French early Virgin.” Byzantine Collection, Seligmann correspondence file. I also liked it—but I don’t think it is quite your kind of object, unless you could get it for very little, which is unlikely, given the source.

No news about the Dresden ivories. They are the things I really want you to get. I’ve written again to Fiedler.

No, you didn’t write to me about the Esztergom reliquary.The Esztergom Staurotheke, Byzantine, ca. 1150–1200, silver gilt and enamel, Cathedral Treasury, Esztergom, Hungary, acc. no. 64.3.1. I’m pretty sure the Hunks“Hungarians.” would not let it out of the country.

Nothing definite as yet about my future plans. Various suggestions & possibilities, some of them interesting. I wouldn’t care to take any sort of private or official job in Hungary, in the circumstances. It would put my past activities there in an unflattering light. I’m afraid that I must make up my mind to a very big drop in screw—but the work may be extremely interesting. I think it is high time I changed my beat, greatly though I shall regret the old one, for many reasons.

Much love to you both


R. T.

Associated People: Antonin Juritzky; Hermann Fiedler
Associated Places: Hungary
Associated Things: L'art byzantin