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Answered 2010-01-04 23:04:14

He only cut off one ear. He was in and out of various mental institutions. Here is the answer fromWhat_did_van_gogh_do_with_his_ear which I think answers the question well: The piece of his ear he severed he (in his view of romance) delivered to a prostitute he thought was his girlfriend. The prosaic version is that Vincent was going to attack Paul Gauguin with a razor, but changed his mind, went back and directed his rage at himself.\'t_Van_Gogh_gay&updated=1&waNoAnsSet=2
"Paul Gauguin has written a letter to a friend where he tells about the incident. Gauguin had left their common lodgings and after a while he heard steps behind him. When he turned around he saw Vincent standing there brandishing a razor. Gauguin stood still just looking at Vincent. Soon Vincent turned and went back to his room, wher he cut off part of his ear. After he had been bandaged he wrapped up the 'object' and sent to the prostitute you mentioned." - Pernys32

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