van Gogh's letters - unabridged and annotated
» Home < Previous   Next >
Letter from Theo van Gogh to Vincent van Gogh
Arles, 16 March 1889

Letter T 4
Paris, 16 March 18891

My dear brother,

I hear that you are not better yet, which causes me a good deal of grief. I so wish you could tell me how you are feeling, for there is nothing more distressing than this uncertainty, and if you could tell me how things are with you, I might be able to do something sooner to give you solace. You have done so much for me that it is a great sorrow for me to know that, precisely at this time when in all probability I am going to have days of happiness with my dear Jo, you are passing through days of misery. She had the fond idea that, by reason of her wanting to live my life as much as possible, you might have been a brother to her, as you have always been to me. We hope from the bottom of our hearts that you will be able to recover your health completely, and that you will be able to resume your work within a short time.

While arranging my new apartment it is such a pleasure for me to look at your pictures. They make the rooms so gay, and there is such an intensity of truth, of the true countryside in them, in each one of them. It is really as you used to say now and then of certain pictures of other artists - that they give the impression of having been reaped directly from the fields.

If it were not so far away, I should certainly have come to see you, but I don't have the time for that, and I ask myself if my visit would be of any use to you.

Signac intends to go to the South within a short time. He will go see you. I am now having an exhibition of Claude Monet at the gallery; it is very successful. It will not be long before the public will be asking for pictures of the new school, for they certainly stir up the public mind. If you can, you would be most kind if you would give me, or let someone give me, news about you, for apart from the letters from Messrs. Rey and Salles, I know nothing about you.

I wish you better health, and remain your brother who loves you.


  1. See Vincent's letter 579.

At this time, Vincent was 35 year old
Theo van Gogh. Letter to Vincent van Gogh. Written 16 March 1889 in Arles. Translated by Mrs. Johanna van Gogh-Bonger, edited by Robert Harrison, number T4.

This letter may be freely used, in accordance with the terms of this site.
» Home < Previous   Next >

or find:         Credits & feedback