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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box1/Fold3/1896/21
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date18 July 1896
Address FromThe Homestead, Kimberley, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other VersionsRive 1987: 287-8
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections. The date has been written on this letter in an unknown hand. Schreiner was resident in Kimberley from early August 1894 to November 1898.
1 Dear Friend Am not thinking of coming down for the show now. Cron
2returned yesterday from Cradock where he had been for ten days.
3
4 No, I don’t distress my self about things. I seem to have no feeling
5left. Hardly about anything. The way they are hounding the Mashonas
6for what they call murder, - i.e. for killing people in time of war -
7is to me far more terrible than anything that is happening in the
8Colony. But I feel I am powerless. The English people are given up to
9their lust for gold & ^Empire & there is nothing left to appeal to.^
10
11 It doesn’t even help me at all to think that in fifty years time all
12this injustice will be terribly paid for in white man’s blood. Why
13should poor innocent folk still unborn pay for the evil deeds of men
14living now! "Though the mills of God grind slowly, yet they exceeding
15small" – yes, but they grind so slowly that the men who put the
16poisoned corn in at the top, are not the men who get the poisoned
17flour out at the other end & die of eating it! The terrible thing
18about evil, lust, cruelty, injustice, greed, is that they keep
19begetting themselves
just as good keeps begetting itself.
20
21 Good bye dear.
22 Olive
23
24
25
Notation
Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.