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South Africa Volume 1

South Africa Volume 1

Shepstone’s annexation of the Transvaal in 1877 provided Trollope with this, his fourth travel book, written between July 1877 and January 1878. The author maintained his lifelong inquisitiveness about countries with English emigrants: ‘Our colonies arethe land in which our cousins….are living and speaking our language.’

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South Africa Volume 1

ISBN 9781870587778

352 pages Hardback

Published 2001


Trollope’s stamina (he was 62) is extraordinary. Though he finds the travelling particularly gruelling – much of it by stagecoach in sweltering heat – the narrative remains fresh and immediate. In the first part of the book we accompany him on visits to ostrich farms and diamond mines; he sketches a wonderful portrait of a Cape politician , Saul Solomon, digresses into Cape politics in general, then gives us a tiny cameo of children playing in a park on Port Elizabeth. En route from Durban he delights us with his wry picture of a fellow passenger who insists on bringing his 45-pound fish on board the coach… This contrasts with the second part of the book in which he travels the Transvaal.

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