1. Van Gogh had asked for a new batch of paint in letter 629. Theo had apparently placed orders with both Tasset and Tanguy; in letter 634 Vincent acknowledges receipt of the paint from Tanguy.
2. Van Gogh must mean G. Edouard’s paint shop at 8 rue Pigalle in Paris, which was taken over by Victor Mulard. The shop is listed under both names in the address books (Almanach du commerce de Paris 1886-1888).
3. On 8 July 1888 Gauguin wrote to Emile Schuffenecker: ‘I told Van Gogh that I accepted his proposal and that I counted on Mrs Pouzin to get me out of here and down to the south. I have had no news from Van Gogh which surprises me and bad news from Mrs Pouzin which means it’s bad on all counts, a sign that something good will happen – as you can see I am still optimistic’ (J’ai répondu à Van Gog que j’acceptais sa proposition et que je comptais sur Made Pouzin pour me liberer d’ici et filer dans le midi. Je ne reçois aucune nouvelle de Van Gog ce qui m’étonne et de Made Pouzin j’en reçois une mauvaise ce qui fait que de tous côtés c’est mauvais, signe que le bon va venir – vous voyez que je suis toujours optimiste) (FR b812).
4. The cost of board and lodging at the Gloanec inn was apparently less than 150 francs a year for two people – half what Van Gogh was paying in Provence. See Correspondance Gauguin 1984, p. 488 (n. 7).
5. These landscapes are The harvest (F 412 / JH 1440 [2621]) and Wheat stacks (F 425 / JH 1442 [2623]); the drawings that were sent were The harvest (F 1483 / JH 1439 [2620]) and Wheat stacks (F 1425 / JH 1441 [2622]). Vincent had sent them to Theo in mid-June (see letter 625).
[2621] [2623] [2620] [2622]
a. Read: ‘distrait’.
6. This is a reference to the art dealer Evelina Delarebeyrette. See letter 600, n. 14, on the nickname ‘La Roquette’ and Monticelli’s drinking.
7. In the 1850s Jongkind suffered a period of setbacks during which he drank to excess, got into debt and was depressed. See exhib. cat. The Hague 2003, pp. 28-31.
8. Van Gogh may be referring to the following words of Jules and Edmond de Goncourt: ‘Tobacco, salvation in times of activity, feverishness and prodigious output; is the laudanum of the nervous system’ (Le tabac, une providence dans un siècle d’activité, de fébrilité, de prodigieuse production; c’est le laudanum du système nerveux), included in the collection Idées et sensations. Paris 1866, p. 213.
9. Jer. 20:9.
10. See letter 629 for this planned expedition to the Camargue.
11. See letter 610, n. 3, for Mourier-Petersen’s ‘nervous condition’.
12. This must be a response to something Theo had written.