"Great pleasure to meet you, hope sincere friendship may follow" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceHRC/CAT/OS/1a-xxvi
ArchiveHarry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateSaturday 28 June 1884
Address FromHolly Cottage, Mount Pleasant, Aspley Guise, Woburn, Bedfordshire
Address To24 Thornsett Road, South Penge Park, London
Who ToHavelock Ellis
Other VersionsCronwright-Schreiner 1924: 23; Rive 1987: 42-3; Draznin 1992: 71-2
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 Apsley Guide in late June and early July 1884.
1Saturday Morning
2
3How good it was of you to think so of me on Thursday night at two
4o’clock & to tell me so.
5
6The letter I sent you last night wasn’t real quite. I wanted to
7write otherwise, but I wouldn’t let myself.
8
9I am not well today. I have not been off the sofa since this morning.
10As soon as I stand up my head swims so, but all the time I lie there I
11have just the thought of you, & some-how I^i^t is pleasant. I think I
12have a heavy feverish cold, I hope it is not the place.
13
14Did you tell Louie all about me? Please do. I hope you feel happy &
15are able to work well. You mustn’t tell her or any one things that I
16tell you about other people but things that I are about myself alone,
17are in your hands, you can do what you like with them, & I shall think
18it right. I have such a strong feeling for Louie. When she put her arm
19round me on the sofa, I wanted to to cuddle ^close^ up to her, but I was
20ashamed. I liked it. I have such an odd feeling ^for her.^ You know when
21I tell you people have loved me or any thing of that kind you must not
22tell any one. Love that has been given you is too sacred a thing to be
23talked of to anyone (don’t you think so,) except just to the person
24who seems ^is like^ part of you & who will feel it as you do.
25
26Will you please tell me little things about your self, about your work,
27 & every thing like that. Is your finger quite better?
28
29Please tell our Louie every thing.
30
31I am so bad, I can’t write better than this today my head goes round
32& round. Whad did you think of that little story in the Mag?
33
34I want to do so much work. You don’t know how I am much better
35mentally since I knew you. I ought to work now.
36
37Olive
38
39It may be I shall be too ill in the next few days to write to you, but
40you can write still.
41
Notation
'That little story in the Mag' is likely to be one of the allegories originally published in the New College Magazine. Draznin's (1992) version of this letter is in some respects different from our transcription. Rive's (1987) version omits part of the letter and is in a number of other respects incorrect. Cronwright-Schreiner's (1924) extract is incorrect in various ways.