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Letter ReferenceHRC/UNCAT/OS-56
ArchiveHarry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateWednesday 8 July 1885
Address From9 Blandford Square, Paddington, London
Address To
Who ToHavelock Ellis
Other VersionsCronwright-Schreiner 1924: 76; Rive 1987: 64-5; Draznin 1992: 368-9
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
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 information written onto it by Ellis.
19 Blandford Sq
4Harry, I wish I could feel passionate, really passionate, love for you.
5 Life would be so perfect so beautiful so divine, but my darling, I
6think I’m reaching a kind of Nirvana. I can’t feel much personally
7^not desire much for myself & that is passion.^ The self seems to be
8dead in me. Other people want to kill self, but I want so to wake mine
9to life again, but it won’t wake. You know, I didn’t kill myself
10two years ago, but I really died then. It’s so funny, I can’t make
11any one understand, I don’t think I could describe it in a book; but
12I have died. It’s of strange Philip Marston feels this about me, not
13knowing. You know when I first knew you I kept thinking you would be
14able to bring my old self back to life again. Perhaps it seems to you
15I’m writing nonsense like Miss Jones. What you say about Hinton is
16true. His value like the value like the value of Emerson is that of
17stimulation. He brings no new thought – when he does it is worthless
18– but he makes all thoughts live & throb which is the work of true
19genius. I got such nice apricot jam, you must have a little when you
20come. Oh you darling, I hoped so when I was lying resting on the bed
21just now that you were here.
23I am getting strong, I’ll be as strong as a ?Gry lion soon.
Draznin's (1992) version of this letter differs in some respects from our transcription. Rivess (1987) version is taken from Cronwright-Schreiner. Cronwright-Schreiner's (1924) extract is incorrect in various ways.