My dear friend Gauguin
I’m taking advantage of my first trip out of the hospital to write you a few most sincere and profound words of friendship.
I have thought of you a great deal in the hospital, and even in the midst of fever and relative weakness.
Tell me. Was my brother Theo’s journey really necessary – my friend? Now at least reassure him completely, and yourself, please. Trust that in fact no evil exists in this best of worlds, where everything is always for the best.1  1v:2
So I want you to give my warm regards to good Schuffenecker
to refrain from saying bad things about our poor little yellow house until more mature reflection on either side –
to give my regards to the painters I saw in Paris.
I wish you prosperity in Paris. With a good handshake

Ever yours,

Roulin has been really kind to me, it was he who had the presence of mind to get me out of there before the others were convinced.2

Please reply.


Br. 1990: 734 | CL: 566
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Paul Gauguin
Date: Arles, Friday, 4 January 1889

1. For this quotation from Voltaire’s Candide, see letter 568, n. 3.
2. Van Gogh means that Roulin had arranged for him to leave the hospital for a short while on 4 January. On that day Roulin wrote to Theo: ‘Monsieur the house doctor felt slightly anxious about letting him go out; I told him that I would be in charge of accompanying him and seeing that he returns to the hospital’ (FR b1068).