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|Letter Reference||T120 (M722): W.T. Stead Papers/62- pages 239-40 & 242
|Archive||National Archives Depot, Pretoria
After Start: Monday 1 February 1897
; Before End: 27 February 1897
|Who To||William Thomas Stead
The manuscript of this letter by Olive Schreiner belongs to the Archive referenced above; its ownership of the original should be acknowledged by referencing the letter as indicated: Copyright transcription: © Olive Schreiner Letters Project. This transcription can be freely used as long as copyright is acknowledged and it is referenced using the following citation: ‘Olive Schreiner to William Thomas Stead, 1 February 1897, National Archives Depot, Pretoria, Olive Schreiner Letters Project transcription’. Please also supply letter line numbers for specific quotations.
The Project is grateful to the National Archives Repository, Pretoria, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Micofilm Collections. Content shows that Schreiner was in London waiting for a book to be published and immanently about to leave for Italy. She left London for Italy at the end of February 1897 after Unwin published a book by her, and thus the dating of the letter and the place it was written from.
3: Dear Friend
5: It was a bitter disappointment to me that you could not come. I am yet
6: more sorrow-ful to think you are ill.
8: If you were a little nearer I would come to see you. I hope we shall
9: leave on Friday morning for Italy. I have only been waiting to see my
10: book out. It will appear next Wednesday. I send you a copy.
12: Yours ever
13: Olive Schreiner
15: I have not felt so ill as I am doing now for ten years & can’t write
16: as I would like. It’s this awful climate. I wish you could turn up in
17: Italy while we are there.
19: I have a little thing I have written, & if I knew you would never
20: refer to it, or mention its existence in any way to any human-being
21: till it is published I would send it you! But could you promise this?
22: Would it be possible for you not to talk about it to any soul???
24: Olive Schreiner
The book Schreiner was ‘waiting to see out’ is Trooper Peter Halket of Mashonaland
. The ‘little thing’ Schreiner had written cannot be established.