My dear brother,
Thanks for your letter of today and for the 50-franc note it contained.1
I’d perhaps like to write to you about many things, but first the desire has passed to such a degree, then I sense the pointlessness of it.2
I hope that you’ll have found those gentlemen3 favourably disposed towards you.
As regards the state of peace in your household, I’m just as convinced of the possibility of preserving it as of the storms that threaten it.
I prefer not to forget the little French I know, and certainly wouldn’t see the point of delving deeper into the rights or wrongs in any discussions on one side or the other.4 It’s just that this wouldn’t interest me.
Things go quickly here – aren’t Dries, you and I a little more convinced of that, don’t we feel it a little more than those ladies?5 So much the better for them – but anyway, talking with rested minds, we can’t even count on that.
As for myself, I’m applying myself to my canvases with all my attention, I’m trying to do as well as certain painters whom I’ve liked and admired a great deal.  1v:2
What seems to me on my return – is that the painters themselves are increasingly at bay.
Very well. But has the moment to make them understand the utility of a union not rather passed already? On the other hand a union, if it were formed, would go under if the rest went under. Then you’d perhaps tell me that dealers would unite for the Impressionists; that would be very fleeting. Anyway it seems to me that personal initiative remains ineffective, and having done the experiment, would one begin it again?
I noted with pleasure that the Gauguin from Brittany that I saw was very beautiful,6 and it seems to me that the others he’s done there must be too.
Perhaps you’ll see this croquis of Daubigny’s garden – it’s one of my most deliberate canvases7 – to it I’m adding a croquis of old thatched roofs8 and the croquis of 2 no. 30 canvases depicting immense stretches of wheat after the rain.9 Hirschig asked me to ask you please to order the attached list of colours for him10 from the same  1v:3 colourman you send me. Tasset can send them directly to him, cash on delivery, but then he would have to be given the 20%.
Which would be simplest.
Or you’d put them into the consignment of colours for me, adding the invoice or telling me how much they cost, and then he’d send you the money. Here one can’t find anything good in the way of colours.
I’ve simplified my own order to a very bare minimum.
Hirschig is beginning to understand a little, it has seemed to me, he’s done the portrait of the old schoolmaster, which he gave him, good – and then he has landscape studies11 which are a little like the Konings at your place12 as regards colour. It will become completely like that, perhaps, or like the things by Voerman that we saw together.13
More soon. Look after yourself, and good luck in business &c. Warm regards to Jo, and handshakes in thought.

Yours truly,
Daubigny’s garden

Foreground of green and pink grass, on the left a green and lilac bush and a stem of plants with whitish foliage. In the middle a bed of roses. To the right a hurdle, a wall, and above the wall a hazel tree with violet foliage.
Then a hedge of lilac, a row of rounded yellow lime trees. The house itself in the background, pink with a roof of bluish tiles. A bench and 3 chairs, a dark figure with a yellow hat, and in the foreground a black cat. Sky pale green.  2v:5


Br. 1990: 908 | CL: 651
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Theo van Gogh
Date: Auvers-sur-Oise, Wednesday, 23 July 1890

1. This was letter 901.
2. On 25 July 1890, Theo wrote to Jo about this letter: ‘There was a letter from Vincent which again I find incomprehensible. We’ve not fallen out, either with him or with each other. He wasn’t even aware that Dries had refused to enter into a joint venture. His letter included a couple of sketches of paintings he’s working on, which look very nice. If only he could find someone to buy a couple from him, but I’m afraid this could still take a very long time. But one cannot drop him when he’s working so hard and so well. When will a happy time come for him? He’s so thoroughly good and helped me so much to keep going.’ Jo answered on 26 July: ‘What might be the matter with Vincent? Did we go too far the day he came? My dearest, I have firmly resolved never to squabble with you again – and always do what you wish’ (FR b2063 and b4241; Brief happiness 1999, pp. 261-264).
3. Theo’s employers at Boussod, Valadon & Cie.
4. During his visit to Theo and Jo (see letter 898), Vincent had apparently insisted on speaking French instead of Dutch, and this idea must have met with resistance from Jo and Andries.
5. This refers to Jo and Annie (Andries’s wife).
6. It cannot be ascertained which ‘Gauguin from Brittany’ Vincent is referring to here. Theo had various works of his on consignment which Vincent could have seen during his visit to Paris. See letters 799 and 813.
7. Vincent means that Theo will one day see the painting after which the letter sketch F - / JH 2106 was made. Van Gogh painted two large canvases of Daubigny’s garden: Daubigny’s garden (F 776 / JH 2104 [2939]) and Daubigny’s garden (F 777 / JH 2105 [2940]). In letter 898 he mentioned the first version of the painting, F 777 / JH 2105 [2940]. The letter sketch in the present letter was made after Daubigny’s garden (F 776 / JH 2104 [2939]), as is clear from the dots used to indicate the path in the lower left corner and the diagonal lines on the roof of the church at top right. The sketch is more elongated than the painting, which accounts for some differences in the composition. The black cat was painted out later.
[2939] [2940] [2940] [2939]
8. The letter sketch Thatched cottages and figures (F - / JH 2116) was made after the painting of the same name (F 780 / JH 2115 [2941]).
9. The letter sketch Wheatfields (F - / JH 2100) was made after the painting of the same name F 782 / JH 2099 [2937]. Wheatfields (F - / JH 2103) was made after the painting of the same name F 781 / JH 2102 [2938].
[2937] [2938]
10. The paint orders for Hirschig and Vincent (l. 67) have not been preserved.
11. These works by Hirschig are not known.
12. For the paintings by Arnold Koning in Theo’s collection, see letter 666, n. 9.
13. In mid-May, meaning the time when Vincent was in Paris, H.G. Tersteeg had sent Theo on consignment a watercolour by Jan Voerman Sr. It is not known which watercolour, however. See Anna Wagner, Jan Voerman. IJsselschilder. Zwolle 1991, p. 54.