My dear friend Russell,
Today I am sending you a little roll of photographs of
pictures by Millet, which you may not know.
However this may be, the purpose is to remind you of myself
and my brother.
Do you know that my brother has got married in the meantime,
and that he is now expecting his first child? Let's hope all
goes well - he has a very nice Dutch wife.
How much it pleases me to write you after such a long
silence! Do you remember when we met our friend Gauguin almost
at the same time - I think you were the first, and I the
He is still struggling on - alone, or nearly alone, like the
brave fellow he is. I feel sure you have not forgotten him.
But, before that, how many times we spoke of
At the moment Gauguin is still with one of my fellow
countrymen by the name of De Haan, and De Haan praises him
highly, and does not think it at all bad to be with him.
You will find [an] article about some canvases I have at the
exhibition of the Vingtistes. I assure you that I owe much to
the things Gauguin told me on the subject of drawing, and I
have the highest respect for the way he loves nature. For in my
opinion he is worth even more as a man than as an artist.
And is everything going well with you? And are you still
Though it is not pleasant to be ill, yet I have no right to
complain, for it seems to me that nature sees to it that
disease is a means of putting us on our legs again and of
healing us, rather than an absolute evil.
If you should go to Paris, please go and take a canvas of
mine at my brother's if you will stick to the idea of someday
getting together a collection for your native country.
You will remember that I have already told you it is my
great desire to give you one for this purpose. How is our
friend MacKnight? If he is still with you, and if there are
others with you whom I have had the pleasure of meeting, please
remember me to them.
Above all give my kind regards to Mrs. Russell, and believe
me, with a handshake in thought,
Vincent van Gogh
[Unlike all the other letters to Russell, this letter is
written in French.]
At this time, Vincent was 36 year old
Vincent van Gogh. Letter to John Russell. Written c. 31 January 1890 in Saint-Rémy. Translated by Mrs. Johanna van Gogh-Bonger, edited by Robert Harrison, number .
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