Brittain, Vera, Diary, 22 August 1915

Diary of Vera Brittain


Case Study: 
From Youth to Experience: Vera Brittain’s Work for Peace in Two World Wars
Brittain, Vera
22 August 1915
McMaster University Libraries
Vera Brittain estate; McMaster University has a non-exclusive licence to publish this document.


would look down on me rather." I think it was Richardson who told her Roland had given me the "Story of an African Farm." At any rate, when she knew that she felt instinctively that our fate was decided. That book, she said, had had such an immense influence on her life, but she never had thought it was going to be the same to us. But when she knew Roland & I had reached a stage of intimacy which was in a way based on "The Story of an African Farm" she realised that the power of the book was going to be just as effective with the next generation. She even told him a day or two ago that she was sure that book of Olive Schreiner's was responsible for all that had happened. Well, it may be. The Lyndalls of this world are few and far between and if Roland made her his ideal woman & then when he met me felt, even after five days acquaintance, that he had met her in real life....I should like to meet Olive Schreiner and tell her about it.
She talked a great deal to me about Roland and herself, of how much he had meant to her always, & how even when he was a tiny child she had felt so lonely when he went away. And all through everything there was never the slightest suggestion of the mother-in-lawish resentful attitude of "You have taken him away from me."
Indeed, I have not, for Roland, like me, is not the sort of superficial being who has to abandon even the least vestige of one love in order to do justice to another. But she never made me feel at all that she was sorry because so early in his life had met someone who had rendered him less entirely hers, even though he might have been hers altogether for another ten years without its being in the least unusual. No, there