"Solitude, change, work" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceEdward Carpenter 359/53
ArchiveSheffield Archives, Archives & Local Studies, Sheffield
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date16 February 1892
Address FromMatjesfontein, Western Cape
Address To
Who ToEdward Carpenter
Other VersionsRive 1987: 200
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
The Project is grateful to the Sheffield Archives, Sheffield Libraries, Archives and Information Services, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Archive Collections. The date has been written on this letter in an unknown hand. The address the letter was written from is provided by content.
1 My dear Edward,
2
3 I’m some how wanting to hear from you & I don’t! Bob wrote to me
4the other day, but didn’t give me any news of you, beyond saying "I
5suppose Edward has told you his own news." Of myself there is
6absolutely nothing to tell. I am in one of those stages when one is
7simply shaping what one has & setting it down. I write a good deal,
8not altogether badly. You see I have now more to set down, at least in
9the form I wish, than I could well do in twenty year. Many conceptions
10that lay before me clear, but too spread out for me to grasp, I am
11getting my fingers round a little. But the work will sh seem very
12small when it is done. I am still living alone at Matjesfontein. What
13of George coming out? That he would be better off here than at Home
14there is not the smallest doubt. How good it would be to see you out
15here. You ought to come first & spy-out the land. Come? What are you
16doing?
17
18 Good bye. I’ve sent for the new Towards D. Love to George & my dear
19old Bob if you are writing.
20
21 Olive.
22 ^
23Do you know a man, now out here, called Lionel Bradford? He is very
24like Karl Pearson. What do you think of him? I am strongly attracted
25to him in a sense, & in a sense repelled.
26
27 Olive
28
29 This question is only for you if you care to answer it.^
30
31
32
Notation
The 'good deal' that Schreiner was writing concerns the articles originally published pseudonymously from 1891 on as by 'A Returned South African', intended for publication in book form as 'Stray Thoughts on South Africa'. However, although prepared for publication, a dispute with a US publisher and the events of the South African War prevented this. They and some related essays were posthumously published as Thoughts on South Africa. The book referred to is: Edward Carpenter (1885) Towards Democracy Manchester: John Heywood. Rivess (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.