Letter from Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh (9 December 1875) ... Dear Theo,
This morning I heard from home what had happened to you,
1 and I wanted to write you at once. I wish I could
do something for you; one of these days a box will be sent to
The Hague, I will put some chocolate in it for you. Gladwell
calls that “consolation.” I will also send you the
book by Jules Breton - at least, if I can get it back, as I
lent it to somebody. I am anxious to know how you are; write
soon and please give me some details about how you spend your
How I should like to be with you, Theo, but what can we do?
It cannot be helped, boy. In a fortnight I shall go home and
then we will certainly see each other, and our meeting again
will not be the less delightful for the accident that has
If you see Uncle Jan, please remember me to him and thank
him for his letter. You must try to become good friends with
him. I don't know him well, but I know he is “pure
It has been very cold. Fortunately,...
Letter from Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh (10 December 1875) ... days you will certainly find agreeable.
But write me how you are feeling soon, and tell me when the
doctor says you will be well again - that is, if you have not
done so already.
Two weeks from today I hope to be in Etten. You can imagine
how I am looking forward to it. Did I you already tell that I
have taken up smoking a pipe again? I have found in it an old
faithful friend, I believe that we never more will separate.
Uncle Vincent told me that you smoke too.
Give me very best love to the Roos family. Both of us have
enjoyed many good things in their house, and they have proved
At the moment we have here Émile Breton's picture,
“Sunday Morning.” You know it, don't you? It is a
village street of cottages and barns, and at the end is the
church, surrounded by poplars. Everything is covered with snow,
and little black figures are going to church. It tells us that
winter is cold but that human hearts are warm.
Best wishes, boy,...
Letter from Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh (3 October 1876) ... Dear Theo,
Our parents have written to me that you are ill. My boy, I
wish I could be with you. Last night, I went on foot to
Richmond; I thought of you all the time, it was a beautiful
grey evening. You know that every Monday I go to the Methodist
church at Richmond; yesterday I spoke a few words on the
subject “ Nothing pleases me except Jesus, and everything
pleases me in God.”
I would like to be closer to you. Oh! Why are we always at
odds with each other? Why? I am enclosing a letter from the
aunts at Zundert - you know that Aunt Bet had an accident. I
wrote to them that you and I would walk over to Zundert at
Christmas if possible.
I have copied a few of the psalms for you; perhaps you would
like to read them one of these days. 1 Drop me a
line as soon as you can.
Letter from Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh (7 October 1876) ... I should like to be with you both, my
boy. And thank God there is some improvement, though you are
still weak. And you will be longing to see Mother, and now that
I hear that you are going home with her, I think of the words
“I have been ill, my mind was tired, my soul
disillusioned and my body suffering. I whom God has endowed at
least with moral energy and a strong instinct of affection, I
fell in the abyss of the most bitter discouragement and I felt
with horror how a deadly poison penetrated my stifled heart. I
spent three months on the moors, you know that beautiful region
where the soul retires within itself and enjoys a delicious
rest, where everything breathes calm and peace; where the soul
in presence of God's immaculate creation throws off the yoke of
conventions, forgets society, and loosens its bonds, with the
strength of renewed youth; where each thought takes the form of
prayer, where everything that is not in harmony with fresh and