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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner: Mary Sauer MSC 26/2.11.123
ArchiveNational Library of South Africa, Special Collections, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date24 February 1899
Address From2 Primrose Terrace, Berea, Johannesburg, Transvaal
Address To
Who ToMary Sauer nee Cloete
Other VersionsRive 1987: 346
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to the National Library of South Africa (NLSA), Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Special Collections. Content indicates Schreiner was in Johannesburg when this letter was written.
1 Feb 24 / 99
3 My darling Mary
5 This is my wedding day. I have been married five years to-day.
7 It was nice your letter came just now. The end of April or beginning
8of May will be something great for me to look forward to & hold on by.
9Will you bring little Paul? I fear not.
11 Mary darling, however blank life is there's always this, to wake every
12morning & feel, Life has to be lived through to-day at each moment
13just doing the right thing
. Do you know what I mean? Perhaps it's more
14beautiful when each day brings the consciousness of joy & fellowship -
15but when it doesn't there's still the great thing left, just to live
16for duty. After all, there's nothing but one's own desertion of one's
17^own^ ideals, that can utterly crush ones soul: one might die of a
18broken heart, & yet life would have been worth living if one had only
19been true to oneself. But sometimes that ?just seems so hard because
20one wants love so.

Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.