van Gogh's letters - unabridged and annotated
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Letter from Theo van Gogh to Vincent van Gogh
Saint-Rémy, 3 January 1890

Letter T23
Paris, 3 January 1890

My dear Vincent,

Your letter was a pleasant surprise to me, for after receiving a note from Mr. Peyron, I dared not hope that you would be able to write, and I will not conceal from you that it grieved me very much.

It is curious that it overtook you exactly one year after your first attack, and it proves that you must be always on your guard. So, for instance, if you know that it is dangerous for you to have colours near you, why don't you clear them away for a time, and make drawings? Like the other times, this crisis may be followed by another one, though it may be much less violent. I think that at such moments you would do better not to work with colours. After some time there will be nothing to prevent your starting again.

There is a misunderstanding about the consignment to Brussels. The worthy Dr. Peyron made a mistake when he read my letter. The pictures were ready in time, and will be sent off today. What I asked was whether you wanted to include some drawings. To return once again to what I just said, if you do not work with colours for a while, nothing will prevent you from making drawings.

Wil has been staying with us since last night; she is looking well, and brought good news from home; your letter gave Mother a great deal of pleasure. 1

I have had no news from Gauguin. He is very happy because De Haan is with him, for the latter pays for his whole maintenance and for his paints, but I don't know whether he will be able to go on forever. I hope you are feeling better already, and that the disease will not return.

Kindest regards from Jo and Wil. Be of good heart and take care of yourself.

Yours, Theo

1. See Vincent's letter 622.

At this time, Vincent was 36 year old
Theo van Gogh. Letter to Vincent van Gogh. Written 3 January 1890 in Saint-Rémy. Translated by Mrs. Johanna van Gogh-Bonger, edited by Robert Harrison, number T23.

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