Dearest Betsy,
I had wanted to fill this little book with drawings for you,1 but Theo is leaving today,2 so I don’t have any more time. You’ll just have to have it the way it is, and when I come back next year I’ll make a new one. Next Monday3 I’m going back to London with my sister Anna, to the house I’ve drawn for you,4 and then I’ll be travelling on the little steamboat that I’ve  1v:2 drawn here.5 Well, Betsy, adieu, until next year.

 3r:4  4r:5


Br. 1990: 024 | CL: -
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Betsy Tersteeg
Date: Helvoirt, Tuesday, 7 July 1874

1. This letter is written in a little sketchbook containing three drawings by Van Gogh (Amsterdam, Van Gogh Museum, inv. no. d410 V/1965). He filled two more little sketchbooks for Betsy. Cf. Szymanska 1967, esp. pp. 7-19, 70-73; and Van der Wolk 1987, pp. 14-15, 18.
2. In the weekend of 4-5 July the Van Gogh family was together in Helvoirt in connection with the departure of Vincent and Anna for London (FR b2709 and b2710). Van Gogh’s father wrote in Anna’s poetry album that on the fifth they ‘were united with all of the family’ and that Vincent and Anna were present at the Lord’s Supper (FR b4415).
3. Their departure actually took place on Tuesday, 14 July (see Date).
4. A drawing which Van Gogh made for Betsy of the house where he lived in London has not survived.
5. This drawing of a steamboat has not survived.