Letter to Robert Moffat 1
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Limaoe (on the Kolobeng)
My Friend of my hearts' love and of all the confidence of
my heart, I am Sechele. I am undone by the Boers,
who have attacked me (though) I had no guilt with them.
They required that I should be in their kingdom, but
I refused. They demanded that I should prevent the
white people - ("Makoa" English are so named Boers are called Maburu)
The Griquas and Battapi from passing me (towards the North)
I repied - all these are my friends, and therefore I can pre-
vent no one (of them) They said, that I must go and
speak with them
but I said if you bring Edwards
and I replied I do not understand your language
but I said if you bring Edwards to be an interpreter
(between us) then I shall speak with you. They came on
Saturday and prepared fight on sabbath, but, I besought
them that they should not fight on the Sabbath and
they assented - They began on Monday morning at
twilight and fired with all their might and burned
the town with fire and scattered us. They killed sixty
of my people. and captured women and children and
men. And the mother of Balerileng they also took
prisoner. . They took all the cattle and all the goods
of the Bakwains, and the house of Livingston they
also plundered taking all his goods - The number
boers but one of her children was given to another boer than he who recieved her as
his captive and is now in a state of hopeless slavery to one of these "Christians"
of their waggons was eighty five and a cannon, and
after they had stolen my waggon and that of Macabe
then the number of their waggons (counting the cannon as
one) was eighty eight. Also the goods belonging to the
hunters (viz. Webb - Codrington - Green - Macabe English gentle
men exploring the country) were all burned with the town
and they have also scattered Sentuhes (people) and Mosielele's
(people, viz. Wanketse and Bakhatla -) and they have determin
-ed to destroy the whole country. and of the Boers were
killed (28) twenty eight - (several have since died of their wounds
parties having several of
their dead unburied) Yes my beloved friend. now my
wife goes to see the children and Kobus Hae will convey
her to you.
I forgot to mention that I said to the Bakwains
Let us flee to the south country but they replied "the
kingdoms of that country have not a bit of peace"
I shall therefore wait and see where they will settle
Salutations to all the teachers and to my children
(signed) I am Sechele
Son of Mochoasele
Revd R. Moffat Kuruman
Recieved in beginning of October 1852 - a true copy - all the
words added to bring out
the meaning are in parentheses
Author(s) & contributor(s): Sechele I; David Livingstone
Date(s): [October 1852]
Place(s) of creation: Limaoe (on the Kolobeng)
Form & transmission history: Original letter, as translated, written down, and annotated by a British explorer.
Object description: Blue two-sided letter, with one hand in black ink with minor editing; archival notes in gray.
Repository: University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies (London, United Kingdom)
Shelfmark / Identifier: CWM/LMS/Home/Livingstone Wooden Box/Item 71
Digital edition & date: One More Voice, 2020
Critical editing & encoding: Justin D. Livingstone, Adrian S. Wisnicki
Rights: Critically-edited text copyright One More Voice. Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
Cite this digital edition (MLA): Sechele I; David Livingstone. “Letter to Robert Moffat 1” ([October 1852]). Justin D. Livingstone, Adrian S. Wisnicki, eds. One More Voice, site launch edition, 2020, https://onemorevoice.org/html/transcriptions/liv_003027_TEI.html.
Explore complete/original item: Livingstone Online
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Production note: The editors produced this edition through a rigorous process that involved transcribing and encoding the text directly from images of the original document using the One More Voice coding guidelines (PDF). Users, however, are encouraged to consult the original document if possible.