He wrapped the ear in newspaper and headed to a nearby brothel.
With his hat pulled over his wound, he handed a prostitute the very surprising package and remarked: “Guard this object carefully.” She fainted upon opening it. Presumably, Van Gogh blushed.
This incident would, eventually, lay out the legacy of his “mental or nervous fever” and posthumously earn him a fanbase who saw him as a “crackpot celebrity” or a “one-eared madman who heard the world in mono”.
It also heralded the naming of disorders related to self-mutilation as the “Van Gogh syndrome”.