Charles Sterling and Margaretta M. Salinger. French Paintings: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vol. 2, XIX Century. New York, 1966, p. 138, ill., call it "Breton Fishermen" and state that it must have been painted at either Brest or Trouville after 1880; note the influence of Ribera.
Charles S. Moffett. Van Gogh as Critic and Self-Critic. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1973, unpaginated, no. 32, dates it probably after 1880; describes it as depicting "the coarse reality of the peasants' world without a single passage of refined, academically correct painting".