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Letter ReferenceErnest Rhys Papers vol II (W.H. Dirks) Eg. 3248, f.10
ArchiveBritish Library, Department of Manuscripts, London
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date After Start: October 1888 ; Before End: December 1888
Address FromGrand Hotel, Alassio, Italy
Address To
Who ToWilliam H. Dirks
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to the British Library for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Special Collections. The letter has been dated from content and when Schreiner was in Alassio and working on her never completed 'Introduction' to Mary Wollstonecraft.
1 Grand Hotel
2 Alassio
3 Alassio
5 Dear Mr Dirks
7 The books ha just arrived. I cannot promise MS for a couple of months,
8but it may be much sooner. Thinking of over the matter I have found it
9impossible to treat Mary Wollstonecrafts work & life, at all, unless I
10go into the whole matter fully. I incorporate in the essay ten years
11of thought & work on sex & woman questions; it is not easy to condense
12it into the limits of an essay. I shall not add notes.
14 I did not ask Mr Rhys what he intended to pay. How is that arranged
15according to length, or quality, or what?
17 I think the book will have an immense sale. The small article I wrote
18in the Fortnightly some months ago have been three times reprinted in
19America, & is now published in a pamphlet form in Boston. I shall get
20it noticed in the Woman's papers &c before it comes out, & shall get
21it unreadable reviewed in the Pall Mall & ^some^ other papers by those
22who are interested in the coming out of the work. I should like every
23woman in England to read it. I would rather wait & feel that I had
24done the work as well as it is possible for me. I have given up
25everything else for it just now.
27 Are you writing any thing at present I saw power & force that might
28lead to a great deal in your story in Today. I did not see the end, as
29I was ill before I left England. I should be very interested to see
30anything you wrote if you would let me know where it was published. I
31should like to have the pleasure of meeting you again if I came to
32England for a short time
34 Yours faithfully
35 Olive Schreiner
No 'small article' by Schreiner appeared in the Fortnightly Review in 1888; she may be referring to: "Three Dreams in a Desert" Fortnightly Review August 1887, vol 42, pp.198-203. The 'MS' was Schreiner's planned but never written introduction to a new edition of Mary Wollstonecraft (1792) A Vindication of the Rights of Woman London: J. Johnson. Dirks' story in Today has not been established. Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.