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Letter ReferenceEdward Carpenter 359/34
ArchiveSheffield Archives, Archives & Local Studies, Sheffield
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date10 January 1889
Address FromHotel du Pavillon, Mentone, France
Address To
Who ToEdward Carpenter
Other VersionsRive 1987: 146-7
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to the Sheffield Archives, Sheffield Libraries, Archives and Information Services, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Archive Collections. The date has been written on this letter in an unknown hand.
1 Hotel du Pavillon
2 Mentone
4 Thank you, dear old Edward, for your letter. Thank you for telling me
5you had seen my friend ^Karl Pearson.^ I knew you would love him if ever
6you met: the nature is rarely pure & truth loving. When you have met
7him several times you will find you have gained something from him. I
8feel if justice were done he would have a share in any praise my work
9might have, even in the little dreams & allegories, that seem so
10intensely unlike him, & which he might even laugh at. I work better
11because I have known him. I wish sometimes I could just come & take
12his hand for a moment & sit & talk over those matters that interest us,
13 or better still sit & say nothing at all. It might be if I were a man,
14 but I shall never be that - eh? Whatever comes never that. Well, the
15compensation comes to me so; that being a woman I can reach other
16women where no man could reach them. A growing tenderness is in my
17heart for them. I shall never be a man & a brother among you men that
18I love so, but I have my work.
20 Why do you not print some more poems? Have you sent any to ?reviewers
21magazines? Next month there will appear in the Fortnightly a little
22allegory of mine you will like very much. It is socialistic. It’s
23not my long one, my best beloved; that will appear bye & bye. I am
24working & you know how happy that makes one. I have given your
25greetings to all the rocks & sea & sky. To-day they are all grey & yet
26so sweet & beloved. I don’t think nature seemed so alive to me, when
27I was a child, even, as it does here. I can’t
29 //I know so well how one gets overrun when one comes to London;
30that’s the penalty one pays for being loved - & the fog makes it
33 I’ve had great pleasure, the Roberts’ came here yesterday, & they
34are coming on Sunday to stay for a few days. I am going out to buy a
35little tea-service for them, to put in their room as a surprise with
36some flowers.
38 Don’t trouble to answer this. Send me anything you write.
40 Deepest thanks my dear brother.
41 Olive
43 I’m getting on so splendidly with my work.
44 ^I’m so glad you love him, Edward, it’s so beautiful to me when
45anybody loves him.^
The 'socialistic' allegory was in fact not published in the Fortnightly Review because of its length. See "The sunlight lay across my bed: Part I - Hell" New Review Vol 1, no 11, April 1890, pp.300-309; and "The sunlight lay across my bed: Part II - Heaven", New Review Vol 1, no 12, May 1890, pp.423-431. . Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.