My dear Theo,
Don’t be cross with me that I’ve come all of a sudden.1 I’ve thought about it so much and I think we’ll save time this way. Will be at the Louvre from midday, or earlier if you like. A reply, please, to let me know when you could come to the Salle Carrée.2 As for expenses, I repeat, it comes to the same thing. I have some money left, that goes without saying, and I want to talk to you before spending anything.3 We’ll sort things out, you’ll see. So get there as soon as possible. I shake your hand.

Yours truly,


Br. 1990: 570 | CL: 459
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Theo van Gogh
Date: Paris, on or about Sunday, 28 February 1886

1. Although the plan to come to Paris had been in the air for a long time, Van Gogh went hotfoot from Antwerp to Paris with no prior warning.
2. The Salon Carré is the large gallery in the southern wing of the Louvre, where numerous masterpieces of European painting hung.
3. Later Van Gogh confessed that he had left Antwerp without paying his bills. In June 1888 he wrote: ‘Wasn’t I forced to do the same thing in order to come to Paris? And although I suffered the loss of many things then, it can’t be done otherwise in cases like that, and it’s better to go forward anyway than to go on being depressed’ (letter 623).