[Letterhead: Goupil Paris]

Paris, 23 March 1876

My dear Theo,
Herewith the book by Longfellow, it will no doubt become a friend of yours.
Today I responded to two more advertisements, I’ll go on doing it, even though most of my letters remain unanswered.
My time here is running out.
You’ll surely see many beautiful things on your trip;1 although a feeling for nature isn’t it, it’s nonetheless a wonderful thing to have; may it always remain with us.
And now you’ll be ‘boarding in many inns’,2 that’s also a singular pleasure at times. You know that I once went to Brighton on foot.3 I always think back on it with pleasure. Lodging-houses in England are often so pleasant,  1r:2 Longfellow describes this well in Tales of the wayside inn.4
Gladwell is getting my place at the gallery; he’s there already, learning the ropes before I leave. I’ve seen quite a few paintings that are going to the Salon, including two very beautiful, large Gabriëls, a morning in the meadows, through the dew one sees a town in the distance, the other one was what we would call a watery sun.5
Also 2 large Xavier de Cocks, one of them an evening at the beginning of summer, a meadow surrounded by poplars; in the distance a farmhouse and fields and a girl bringing the cows home. In the foreground a pond, next to which 3 cows – a white one, a black one and a red one – lie in the grass; the sun has already set and the sky is pale yellow, the trees dark against it.6
I’m writing in great haste, as you’ll see from my handwriting.7 Have a good trip, and ever,

Your loving brother


Br. 1990: 071 | CL: 57
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Theo van Gogh
Date: Paris, Thursday, 23 March 1876

1. Theo made the spring sales trip for Goupil; see also letter 71.
2. Allusion to the last line of the poem ‘De bestedeling’ (The boarder) by Jan van Beers. See letter 10, n. 10.
3. The journey on foot will have taken place when Van Gogh was living in London, between June 1873 and May 1875 (except for a three-month interval from October to December 1874, when he was in Paris). Brighton is on the south coast of England, c. 80 km south of London.
4. The beginning of Tales of a Wayside inn (1863) contains an evocation of the interior of an inn at Sudbury.
5. Constant Gabriël was represented at the Salon of 1876 with the works L’Aube, dans les polders de la Hollande (Dawn in the polders of Holland) and L’Approche de la pluie – Vue du lac d’Abcoude (Pays-Bas) (Approaching rain – View of Lake Abcoude (Netherlands)) (present whereabouts unknown). See exhib. cat. Paris 1876, p. 105, cat. nos. 836-837.
[77] [78]
6. Xavier de Cock had two works at the Salon: Forêt (Forest) and Vaches (Cows) (present whereabouts unknown). See exhib. cat. Paris 1876, p. 72, cat. nos. 579-580. Van Gogh describes the depiction of Cows.
7. Despite Van Gogh’s remark, his handwriting shows no traces of hastiness.