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Letter ReferenceHRC/CAT/OS/3a-xvii-b
ArchiveHarry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateWednesday 26 November 1884
Address From144 Marina, St Leonards, East Sussex
Address To24 Thornsett Road, South Penge Park, London
Who ToHavelock Ellis
Other VersionsCronwright-Schreiner 1924: 47, 47; Draznin 1992: 229-30
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
The Project is grateful to the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, the University of Texas at Austin, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscript Collections. This letter has been dated by reference to an associated envelope and its postmark, which also provides the address it was sent to. Schreiner was resident in St Leonards from mid October to the end of November 1884.
1Wednesday
2
3Have not been able to post today, comrade. Please find out for me
4whether the picture of the horned beetle is in Darwin’s “Des-¬cent of
5man” or in “Variations of Plants &c.” I make Rebekah say in Descent of
6Man.” I am working. I am a little better this evening.
7
8Olive
9
10I am going to work.
11
12Harry I must feel very near to you because I think I wouldn’t mind
13taking anything from you. I wouldn’t mind taking anything from my Dadda
14
15^if he wasn’t married.^
16
17Thursday night.
18
19I am going to try & get rooms at Hastings tomorrow, & will will pay up
20the next week here & leave at once. I am going to Hastings for a week
21& if I don’t get better there I will ask my Brother for money & go to
22Switzerland or Italy.
23
24I thought I was going to die this morning the suffocation got so bad,
25but of course it was only fancy Mrs. Cobb called this afternoon. I
26like her much. She is like what poor Miss Jones might have been under
27happier circumstances Poor Miss Jones. I haven’t been able to go see her.
28
29^her. I’m your little sister. Olive.^
30
31^Are you able to work my darling? Are you strong?^
32
33^Yes, all that part of Undine is exactly autobiography Old Rob did
34leave his slipper. It is all true, but it isn’t art, any more than a
35diary is. Do I make a little feather go up & down on the water like
36then really was when I read Julius Gau’s letter.^
37
Notation
Rebekah is a character in From Man to Man. The books referred to are: Charles Darwin (1868) Variations of Animals and Plants London: John Murray; (1871) Descent of Man London: John Murray. Draznin’s (1992) version of this letter is in some respects different from our transcription. Cronwright-Schreiner’s (1924) extract contains material from different letters, and is also incorrect in various ways.