"Not a personal matter, all women of Cape Colony, Women's Enfranchisement League" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceHRC/UNCAT/OS-24
ArchiveHarry Ransom Center, University of Texas, Austin
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateFriday 3 April 1885
Address From4 Robertson Terrace, Hastings, East Sussex
Address To
Who ToHavelock Ellis
Other VersionsDraznin 1992: 332-3
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
The Project is grateful to the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, the University of Texas at Austin, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscript Collections. This letter has been dated by reference to information written onto it by Ellis. Schreiner was resident at two addresses in Hastings from the end of November 1884 to the end of April 1885.
1Friday Eve.
2
3I haven’t had a letter today because it was Good Friday. I’ve been
4lying a little on the bed in the dark before I lit my lamp. I was
5thinking of you, such little quivering burst of tenderness come to you
6sometimes. I was thinking of you this morning as you looked that first
7day in the little parlour at South Kensington & there is a wonderful
8charm about you. Ach how he sat looking down, & something drew me to
9you, & something repelled me. I want to see you so, but I would want
10to see you more, I think, if we were of the same sex. I can hardly
11explain what I mean, but our being of opposite sexes does to me,
12except sometimes, seem to draw us together it seems to spoil the
13beautiful spiritual relationship. Do you understand how I mean. I am
14writing this something in Miss Jones’s style! Isn’t that character
15of Dick well drawn in the Mummer’s Wife? I have not been out of the
16house since Monday. I will send Mummer’s Wife when I go out. I
17don’t know why your last letter was so precious to me. I like to
18think of my letter creeping about you. You must take care of these
19colds you get so often. You know I don’t think you are very strong.
20
21I kiss you on your eyes & on your cheeks. What makes me so foolish &
22tender to you this evening. I’ve been lost in my work all day.
23
24Olive
25
26Why does Miss Haddon say about Mrs. Walters “From such a quarter.”
27What does she know about Mrs. Walters? I wrote a note to Miss Jones.
28Roden Noel comes every day to ask how I am.
29
Notation
The book referred to is: George Moore (1885) A Mummer’s Wife London: Vizatelly & Co. Draznin's (1992) version of this letter is in some respects different from our transcription.