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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box7/Fold2/Aug-Dec1919/32
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateNovember 1919
Address From9 Porchester Place, Edgware Road, Westminster, London
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other Versions
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 of this letter is surmised from content. Schreiner was resident at Porchester Place from early April 1917 until August 1920, when she left Britain for South Africa.
1Dear, Eva has just spent the afternoon with me. It is most interesting
2to hear all her news.
4I have not yet heard from that man. It is pouring with rain & very
5cold & foggie at the same time.
7Eva says the clear sunshine in Germany was so delightful. My dear one
8you are never out of my thoughts.
11^I do hope Con ^^Lytton^^ may suffer a little less now that huge mass is gone.^
This letter has been written on the back of a letter dated 5 November 1919 which Schreiner had received from Constance Lytton, as follows:

My dearest Olive

Bets sent me today your letter recommending the violet leaves for cancer. I had not heard of it till yesterday when my Nurse was telling me about it. She had two patients who had tried them, quite in vain. But, as you say – “When the Drs say they can do nothing more there is no harm in trying,” and at any rate your brother-in-law believed in them, & was eased by them. My Nurse – she has consummate skill in nursing and is an angel human being – thinking it often good to take in Tea, because of diarrhoea, etc – and that the good of the compresses is in the local heat which would be better applied dry. So much for the advice of an unbeliever!

This is the 13th day since the operation on me. They now have examined the cyst. Dr. Aldrich Blake who operated, read me their report. It was technically worded but quite clear that it was not malignant – cancerous – and would have no tendency to recur. It was bigger than they thought – the Dr. said “the size of one’s head”. The nurse described it “as large was a football”!

Now I am recovering wonderfully and do not feel breathless at all.

Dear two friends who have cancer are going death’s releasing way, I suppose. For all the painful road that they must first tread I offer them all I have of sympathy. For their outgoing – all glorious release – I give them my most understanding love.

I shall be coming to London to see you next!

Dearest Olive
Your most loving