Dear Sir,
Here are a few more books; you’ll certainly like the one by Rovers with the little etching by Israëls,1 and the drawings by Menzel too.
I’m very glad that you’ve been to Antwerp and have seen some good paintings there.
I hope that it will work out so that we’ll be able to go there together this summer, and then at the same time go and see the modern paintings in Brussels, which in my view are superb.2
I think I’ll be in a position to do it in the course of the summer.
For my part, I particularly need to see the work of Degroux, Meunier and a few other Belgians again.
I’m enclosing with the books some woodcuts that I know you’ve already seen at my place, but it can do no harm for you to look at them again at leisure in your own home.
I have duplicates of 4, namely Renouard, Menzel, Heilbuth and Dagnan. They’re at the front of the portfolio and you can keep them.
I respectfully remain,

Your servant


Br. 1990: 498 | CL: -
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Anton Kerssemakers
Date: Nuenen, early May 1885

1. Van Gogh is referring to the reproduction of a farmer facing the title page in the book H. Hollidee, Etsen naar het leven. Met een inleidend woord door A.C. Loffelt en een teekening van Israëls. Leiden 1881 (Etchings from life. With an introduction by A.C. Loffelt and a drawing by Israëls). Ill. 2136 [2136]. H. Hollidee is the pseudonym of Elard Albert Rovers. The collection contains seven novellas in which Rovers describes the North Brabant village life of his childhood. This slim volume evidently circulated, since Andries Bonger wrote to his parents not long afterwards: ‘Have you ever seen a little book: Etsen naar het leven, by H. Hollidee? If not, I can really recommend that you read them; they are very good’ (FR b1815, 2 June 1885).
2. The Musée Moderne was in the Palais Ducal. It had around 180 paintings by modern Belgian artists and by several foreigners. See Baedeker 1885, pp. 31-33. (Van Gogh added the word ‘modern’ (‘moderne’) later).