van Gogh's letters - unabridged and annotated
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 2 letters relate to psychology - hallucinations...Excerpt length: shorter longer  
Letter from Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh
(28 January 1889)
... so much the worse. I can't help it. However, the unbearable hallucinations have ceased, and are now getting reduced to a simple nightmare, in consequence of my taking bromide of potassium, I think. It is still beyond my powers to go into the details of this money question, and yet I want to do that very thing, and I am furiously at work from morning till night, to prove to you (unless my work is another hallucination), to prove to you that indeed and indeed we are following Monticelli's track, and what's more, that we have a light before our feet and a lamp upon our path in the powerful work of Brias of Montpellier, who did so much to create a school in the South. Only don't be too amazed if during the next month I shall be obliged to ask you for the month's money in full and some extra money as well. After all it is only right that during periods of productivity, on which I spend all my vital warmth, I should insist on what is necessary in order to...
Letter from Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh
(22 May 1889)
... or Pissaro's, relined. Again - speaking of my condition - I am so grateful for yet another thing. I've noticed that others, too, hear sounds and strange voices during their attacks, as I did, and that things seemed to change before their very eyes. And that lessened the horror with which I remembered my first attack, something that, when it comes upon you unexpectedly, cannot but frighten you terribly. Once you know it is part of the illness, you accept it like anything else. Had I had not seen other lunatics close to, I should not have been able to stop myself from thinking about it all the time. For the suffering and the anguish are not funny when you are having an attack. Most epileptics bite their tongue and injure themselves. Rey told me that he had seen a case where someone had mutilated his own ear, just as I did, and I think I heard a doctor from here, who came to see me with the director, say that he too had seen it before. I like to think that once...

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