"I'm working so hard to get all my things done to take to England, I like Rudyard Kipling, his letter of thanks to OS" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box1/Fold5/1898/45
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date14 November 1898
Address FromDounan?s House, Hospital Hill, Johannesburg, Transvaal
Address ToGirls Collegiate School, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other VersionsRive 1987: 341-2
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
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 name of the addressee and the address this letter was sent to are provided by an attached envelope.
1 Dounan’s House
2 Hospital Hill
3 Nov 14th 1898
5 Dear Friend
7 I am so glad you & Miss Greene have got out to New Brighton again. Oh
8that beautiful beautiful sea! How lovely it was that day up at
9Wagenmakers Kop! I shall never forget it. You know that week with you
10was the one really beautiful sweet time I’ve had in the last two
11years. Perhaps it is because I am too numb to feel, but I feel such a
12quiet confidence that all will go well at Cape Town. Personally to me,
13things are not one hundreth part so awful as they were two years ago,
14wh just before the raid, when my brother was still with Rhodes, & even
15dear old Merriman wrote when I published the political situation
16pamphlet, that "it was too strong" in its attack on Rhodes. I felt
17then as if I were on board ship on a dark still night, & the great
18vessel were sweeping steadily & swiftly on towards the rocks, & the
19captain & the crew were all asleep, & there was not one voice to wake them.
20 They are awake now, & whether for the moment we fall, the great anti
21capitalist fight that will go on for the next twenty years has begun!
22I hope you found dear old Merriman’s letter as comforting as I did.
24 Good bye, dearest one. You must try to rest. I am longing to know that
25your holidays have come. I believe when you go down to Cape Town & are
26among them all you will find the strain less.
28 Love to our darling Miss Greene.
29 Olive
Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.