"James Rose Innes in broader political life, O advises" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceSmuts A1/191/57
ArchiveNational Archives Repository, Pretoria
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date21 December 1908
Address FromDe Aar, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToJan Smuts
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
The Project is grateful to the National Archives Repository, Pretoria, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Special Collections.
1 Lieve Neef Jan
2
3 Ik stuur voor jou een "article", de ik greschryven het. Lees dit. Dink
4daar o’er. Ik veet jÿ is vanje slimmer als ik; maar, God het daarom
5voor jou oude, kleine, tanteje iets laat zien. Jÿ weet, mein lieve
6Neef Jan, toen Hofmeyr en Rhodes voor jou naar Kimberley gestuur het,
7dat jy was verkeërd, en de domme, kleine tanteje het recht gehad. Jy
8moet niet zo als Milner wees, om alles te lezen, en niets ter
9luisteren!
10
11 Wees niet kwaad f voor jouw kleine tante: die wat zÿ moet zegt, die
12moet zÿ zegt.
13
14 Die Brief is zoo goed geschreven en die Hollands is zoo hoog, ik vrees
15mÿ. Neef Jan zal het niet verstaan, daarom zal ik nu op-hou.
16
17 Tante,
18 Olive.
19
20 de Aar
21 Dec 21st 1908
22
23 Toe Neef Jan
24
25
26
Notation
This letter is written in a mixture of Dutch and taal. It is written humorously but with serious intent and we translate it as follows:

Dear Nephew Jan

I send you an article, that I have written. Read it. Think about it. I know you are rather cleverer than I; but, God therefore allowed your old, small auntie to see something. You know, my dear Nephew Jan, when Hofmeyr and Rhodes sent you to Kimberley, that you were wrong, and the stupid, little auntie was right. You must not be like Milner, reading everything, and listening to nothing!

Do not be angry with your little auntie: that which she says, she must say.

This letter is so well written and the Dutch is so high, I shock myself. Nephew Jan will not understand, therefore I will now stop.

Auntie,
Olive.

To Nephew Jan.

The article that Schreiner sent with this letter, which will almost certainly have been that on the 'taal', is no longer attached.