"Opposition to vote on same terms as men, our constitution was violated, politics of Women's Enfranchisement League" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box1/Fold3/1896/14
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateFriday May 1896
Address FromThe Homestead, Kimberley, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other VersionsRive 1987: 282-3
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 month and year have been written on this letter in an unknown hand. The name of the addressee is indicated by content. Schreiner was resident in Kimberley from early August 1894 to November 1898.
1 Friday morning
3 Thank you for your letter. Oh yes, I am very regular with the meals, &
4cook very well!!!! Dr To day we are going to have plumpudding & stewed
5lamb, & green beans & potatoes, & soup!! I don’t think my house work
6prevents my working, it gives me exercise without going t out. I’ve
7only been twice into Kimberly in the day time since we came back, &
8then I nearly cried for joy when I came home! I do so wish I could get
9right away for mental change somewhere, but Cape Town & Port Elizabeth,
10 the only places I would care to go to are too far.
12 You know why I feel so ridiculously what people say about Cron having
13influenced my view of Rhodes, or on the other hand my having forced
14him to give up his old stand is because it always seems to me such a
15huge crime such a dreadfully wicked thing when people allow their
16personal views on impersonal matters to be influenced by there
17personal relations to persons. It seems almost, if not quite so wicked
18as to allow monetary interests to influence you. I love my brother
19Will better than any one in the world except perhaps my eldest brother.
20 He & I were children together when all the others were grown up but
21if he continues to take the stand he has taken on the native question
22I couldn’t desire that he should take a lead in public life, I am
23bound to be on the side of the men who oppose him. It would be exactly
24the same with Cron, only I would never have married any man who views
25of right & wrong were not mine - & this however much I had loved him.
26Long before I ever met Cron I read some articles of his in the Midland
27News with the spirit of which of which on public matters I felt such
28sympathy that I wrote to a friend in Cradock to ask who they were by,
29& that & hearing of the heroic part he had played for years towards a
30woman 12 years older than himself first drew me to him long before I
31met him. And he curiously enough not knowing I had ever heard of him,
32wrote me a letter long before we met, to tell me how much my books had
33helped him. In a lecture he gave in Kimberly a year before we met, he
34said a great deal about me & my views. If there was a fault in our
35relation when we married it was that it was too purely of an
36intellectual kind. The other kind of love has grown up since. I’m
37returning in June.
39 Mr Lloyd is coming to see us in August.
41^Love to you & to Miss Greene. ^
Rive's (1987) version omits part of this letter and is also in a number of respects incorrect.