Rotherhithe – 3rd State

James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903), Rotherhithe, etching and drypoint, 1860 [signed and dated in the plate lower left]. Reference: Kennedy 66, third state (of 3). Published, in the third state, as part of the Thames Set. In very good condition, with margins, 10 7/8 x 7 7/8, the sheet 15 1/16 x 10 1/4 inches.

A fine impression, printed in black on a cream laid paper.

Rotherhithe is the area opposite Wapping on the banks of the Thames. The site of the image is the Angel, an inn in Bermondsey, very near Rotherhithe. Although Tower Bridge dominates the view up-river from the narrow balcony, in the distance St Paul’s Cathedral is visible beyond the bend of the river.

Rotherhithe is one of Whistler’s most iconic early images; it was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1862, and then was titled Wapping in its later 1871 publication as part of the Thames Set (a series of 16 etchings). The copper plate is in the Freer Gallery of Art.