"Wicked mad diplomacy, lying & darkness" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box3/Fold4/1905/35
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date31 August 1905
Address FromHanover, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other Versions
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 name of the addressee of this letter is indicated by salutation and content.
1 Hanover
2 Aug 31st 1905
4 My darling Friend
6 Yes, I know, sometimes we seem to have conquered anything & every
7thing is open before us, we fancy forever; & then it seems to close in
8again; but it never closes in in quite the same way.
10 To me it seems we have to conquer our longing for love & sympathy,
11even our most right & beautiful longings, just as we have to conquer
12any lower ^longings^ for ease or pleasure. We have to sit lose, even on
13love – but this is a hard saying! "Heartily know, when half God’s
14go, The whole Gods come
." says dear old Emerson.
16 //It has been a fine day here; the first one we have had for a long
17time. After the dinner things were cleared away I went & sat on the
18nearest kopje just across the vley for some time & I wished you & Miss
were there with me it was all so beautifully calm & clear & you
20could see such a long way.
22 I got a beautiful letter from Isabella Ford today. She like you both
23so much, & is so disappointed you could not go to stay with her at
24Leeds. I wish you could.
26 The thing that it is hardest for me not to be troubled about now is
27these Chinese. They are practically slaves flogged & ill treated in
28the mines, & when by any chance they manage to es-cape there is no
29hope for them every man’s hand is against them. They must starve &
30die or be captured & sent back to the mines & in despair these
31horrible murders are committed. I would write on the question if I saw
32the slightest use; but it is not things must ^play out to their own
33terrible end. Good bye. I do hope you are away in sweet Italy or dear
34old Germany, or among the Swiss mountains by this time
36 ^Olive ^
38 Cron has returned from de Aar: he came yesterday. We are all well. Old
39‘Arriet is so sweet. She gets sweeter & sweeter as she gets older.
'Heartily know, when half Gods go, The whole Gods come' is a slight misquotation from Ralph Waldo Emerson's poem 'Give All To Love', which appears in his (1847) Poems Boston: Ticknor and Fields.