van Gogh's letters - unabridged and annotated
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Letter from Reverend Salles to Theo van Gogh
Arles, 1 March 1889

Arles, 1st March 1889


Everybody, the intern, the bursar and the board of directors, are well disposed in his regard, and it has been decided that someone will accompany him tomorrow to his house to fetch his brushes and colours to give him something to do during his stay in hospital.

However, the question remains the same. The Central Commissioner, who has the petition I spoke to you about, and who conducted the inquest in the neighbourhood, remains convinced that he was right to take these measures.

Meanwhile it seems to me, and it is also the view of M. Rey, that it would be a kind of cruelty to lock up a man who has not done any harm to anyone and who can, with kindness and good will, return to his normal state. I repeat, he has on his side the best will of all those that attend him at the hospice, and everything is being done to make it possible to avoid his transfer to a mental asylum.

In any case, if they succeed in returning him to his normal state, it would be necessary that he gives up his current accommodation and move to another quarter of the city. This is the opinion of everybody.

I give you my best regards, Sir, and my best wishes. Salles.

At this time, Vincent was 35 year old
Reverend Salles. Letter to Theo van Gogh. Written 1 March 1889 in Arles. Translated by Robert Harrison, edited by Robert Harrison, number to.

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