"I valued it more than all the hundreds of letters" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceLetters/165
Archive
Epistolary Type
Letter Date10 March 1886
Address FromBournemouth, Dorset
Address To
Who ToHavelock Ellis
Other VersionsCronwright-Schreiner 1924: 95
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
When Cronwright-Schreiner prepared The Letters of Olive Schreiner, with few exceptions he then destroyed her originals. However, some people gave him copies and kept the originals or demanded the return of these; and when actual Schreiner letters can be compared with his versions, his have omissions, distortions and bowdlerisations. Where Schreiner originals have survived, these will be found in the relevant collections across the OSLO website. There is however a residue of some 587 items in The Letters for which no originals are extant. They are included here for sake of completeness. However, their relationship to Schreiners actual letters cannot now be gauged, and so they should be read with caution for the reasons given.
1To Havelock Ellis.
2Bournemouth, 10th March.
3
4I never could ever have conceived of the problem till the last two
5years. But now I feel that all the influence which I can have through
6my books is as nothing to the influence I can have personally.
7Anything I can do in my books is only a little over-flood of that
8influence. (But it lasts longer.) It is because I love and enjoy that
9so much better that I chafe against individuals taking my love and
10thought. And the two things are not to be combined. Exactly that
11life-blood which you give to your friends is what you in a lesser
12degree put into your books. Take Mrs. - . The moment I am passive and
13sit still, as you do, she weeps and says that I am "far from her." It
14is the same with - and everyone. I sometimes feel as if I was bleeding
15to death.
16