van Gogh's letters - unabridged and annotated
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Letter from Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh
London, 10 August 1874

Dear Theo,

“Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man.”

“He that is without sin among you, let him cast a stone at her.”

So keep to your own ideas, and if you doubt whether they are right, test them with those of Him who dared to say, “I am the truth,” or with those of some very human person, Michelet, for instance…

Virginity of soul and impurity of body can go together. You know the “Margaret at the Fountain,” by Ary Scheffer, is there a purer being than that girl “who loved so much”?

“Leys n'est pas un imitateur mais un semblable” [Leys is not an imitator but a similar one] is a true saying that struck me too. One might say the same of Tissot's pictures, of his “Walk in the Snow,” “Walk on the Ramparts,” “Marguerite in Church,” etc.

With the money I gave you, you must buy Alphonse Karr's Voyage autour de mon jardin. Be sure to do that - I want you to read it.

Anna and I walk every evening. Autumn is coming fast and that makes nature more serious and more intimate still. We are going to move to a house quite covered in ivy; I will soon write more from there. Compliments to anyone who may inquire after me.


At this time, Vincent was 21 year old
Vincent van Gogh. Letter to Theo van Gogh. Written 10 August 1874 in London. Translated by Mrs. Johanna van Gogh-Bonger, edited by Robert Harrison, number 021.

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