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Letter ReferenceKarl Pearson 840/4/1/64-69
ArchiveUniversity College London Library, Special Collections, UCL, London
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateThursday 5 November 1885
Address From9 Blandford Square, Paddington, London
Address To
Who ToKarl Pearson
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to University College London (UCL) and its Library Services for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Special Collections. The date of this letter has been written on in an unknown hand. The name of the addressee is indicated by content and archival location.
1 9 Blandford Sq
2 Thursday
4 I hope you did not mind what I said about your paper; did you? I got
5quite unhappy thinking about it last night. I feel as though I I told
6Mr Thicknesse too that I didn’t like the last part; but he loves you
7so that it doesn’t matter what one says to him. I think what pains
8one is to find those one has looked on as friends have, have spoken of
9one to those who are not sympathetic & don’t like one. After Mr
had gone Miss Müller burst out against the club & against
11me. She said what she said ^in her paper^ came like a revelation to all
12of us, we pretended not to have heard it before
; we were too great
13cowards any of us to answer her, or ^to^ agree, with what we knew was
14the truth. I tried to say to say that what we opposed was her not
15defining what ^im^ morality & sin were, but Mr Martin, a friend of hers
16to whom she had evidently told about it; turned round on me & said "It
17wasn’t so; it wasn’t so, it wasn’t so, It isn’t true, it
18isn’t true!" I was never more astonished in my life & of course
19became silent, I didn’t say another word in justification of our
20conduct. I tell you this because you, Mr Thicknesse or Mr Parker, may
21be writing notes on her paper, & perhaps might unreadable & put ^write^
22them differently if you knew how bitter she felt. She has never been b
23see me since, the meeting; & she I thought she must be very bitter by
24the remark she made to Mr Thicknesse & myself at dinner about the club
25being made up of old maids &c. I think she is now in a nervous &
26unstrung mental & physical state, caused by her very rapp wonderful
27mental growth lately, & I wouldn’t like us to say anything very hard
28on her at the next meeting. She is a plucky, fearless, brave, truthful
29little woman, & that’s a great thing, to say of a woman. I think if
30some man such as you could get near to her & treat her mentally with
31sympathy you might help her a great deal. Don’t forget about Miss
on Monday. I would like so much that you & Henry Ellis should
33know eachother, but he is so silent & has such a thick shell & so many
34prickles, & you have such a thick shell & so many prickles, that if
35you did meet you mightn’t know each other any better than before. I
36think the best thing in life is to find the people who belong to us, &
37when I see people who seem to belong to each other I feel such an
38irresistible wish to bring them together. But it doesn’t succeed
39sometimes. Please send me Mrs Wilson’s address I want to write to
40her. ^I do like her very much.^
42 ^Don’t mind please what I say about what you write. I like to
43criticise your writings freely.^
45 ^I’m so glad you’re so young; you’ve got so many years to work to
46grow still. I thought you were much older till Mr Thicknesse told me,
47I’m very glad.^
The papers Schreiner refers to are Pearson's 'The Woman's Question', read at the first meeting of the Men and Women's Club in July 1885, and Henrietta Muller's 'The Other Side of the Question', read in October 1885.