"Solitude, change, work" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner: Mary Sauer MSC 26/2.11.44
ArchiveNational Library of South Africa, Special Collections, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateThursday 17 December 1891
Address FromCape Town, Western Cape
Address To
Who ToMary Sauer nee Cloete
Other VersionsRive 1987: 196-7
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
The Project is grateful to the National Library of South Africa (NLSA), Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Special Collections. The date has been written on this letter in an unknown hand. Content indicates Schreiner was in Cape Town when it was written.
1 Thursday night
2
3 My darling Mary
4
5 Can I come early on Saturday morning to you & spend the morning & then
6go with you to the cricket match?? Wire me to Camps Gardens Cape Town
7if I can't. Be sure & tell me if you have something else to do.
8
9 I want to make up a party to go to Houts Bay on Sunday. If I can will
10you go??
11
12 Today my dear old friend & brother Ellis is to be married in England.
13Such an ideal marriage but I'd have liked to be with them today.
14
15 I can't help that I seem so stupid & tired, dear heart; I am like that
16just now, so very, very tired. Next week I shall settle to my work
17again, here if I can ^work here^, if not I'll go back to Matjesfontein.
18I'm in the middle of something so interesting; but that takes a lot
19out of one to do. I'm not selfish, but if you knew what an agony it
20was to a nature like mine to have to uncover itself to the world, you
21would understand that I feel it better not to for the sake of my work,
22because the less pain one feels the better one works.
23
24 I think you would love Miss Conybeare if you knew her she's taken such
25a great fancy to you, & think you are the nicest woman she has seen
26since she came to Africa. She a noble unselfish nature.
27
28 I am going to spend one afternoon next week at Lenn Muizenberg. Will
29you come with me, just you & I alone & we can go to sleep on the sand.
30
31 Goodnight.
32 Olive
33
34 Is Miss Shippard coming to you for Xmas as she said?
35
36 I want to dedicate a new vol. of dreams, I am going to publish next
37year, to you. Can I? They are all written. I think they are better
38than the first. Some are old & some new.
39
40 OS
41
42
43
44
Notation
Schreiner's Dream Life and Real Life appeared in 1893 and was dedicated to Schreiner's oldest brother Fred. Rive?s (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.