Chapter 131311604

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Chapter NumberIV
Chapter TitleBARBARA VAN BERG
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article131311604
Full Date1899-12-30
Page Number12
Corrections0
Word Count1453
IllustratedN
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleThe Hillston Spectator and Lachlan River Advertiser (NSW : 1898 - 1953)
Trove TitleThe Great Boer Conspiracy. A Tale of the Transvaal War, 1899-1900
article text

Ihe Great Boer Conspiracy.

- A Tal® of toe YrsaffBSwaa! 1@S39-1SSQQ. [ALL RI gTTTS° RHS E K V HP.]

~ O. B-iessiraesss^. ' A Lost Identity' ' The Dishonourable,' ' Wynnum,' ' An Atts 1 tr aha n Bush Track' ' Tin Sea Cliff Towers iJydery ,' etc.

WW?'~£'' CHAP TEH IV. I Barbara Van Berg. 5p^''v7' ~ '''' ' ( Continued ).

r U1C' 'r can- briefly sketch v-v {' ',you my cousin Barbara. Slip had just V passed her twenty seventh birthday, -?' WJls tull and peifeotly proprji tiDnud, slf?* ' \ but slight of tiguie. tier dark b-own bair missed itself luxuriantly above a ^ ^ broad forehead, and h^r eyes, of srn ^?V ^ ' gulir iutel licence and expressiveness were such as could only have belonged ^ k° such a brow. The mouth «m3 well developed and firm, and in full har

^.-vc = niony with the classical regulailty of - her features. Barbara Van Berg had ip 'P-, * grown in all respects since 1 had last seen her and was now a fully develop ' ' v e(^ woman, whose first appearance at 0^-k' ' once commanded admiration and re - spect ; voice, gesture, and every niove ment ot hor graceful form were in yf\ , keeping, and all perfectly natural. observant man, on fiist meeting with her, would sty instinctively to himself, here,' is a woman worth k now- ing, one' who has learned t j patiently j~sp ,y conquer difficulties, whose muul is not *? ' ' the mere reflex of the minds of men she knows, qr has read ; but is stored witk oi igirial ideas, as well as gathered knowledge. Standing together, the brother and sister formed a pleasant pictuie— - worthy descendants of the brave old feai \ess s-?a kings, whose blood coursed strongly through their veins. ' Barbara is writing another book,' said Aloert as we tat together at an improvised meal prepared for my special benefit. ' 7 - - ^ 1 What is it inspires you to wri te. so much V I asked. K 1 There is so much to write about,' ' ' she answered, smiling. 1 Thoughts need to be expressed if you wish to influence others, and why should not : our h !e kingdom of the Netherlands again train to position and power among the nations of Europe? It is not population nor extensive land area which now a days makes a people great and strong, 'but wisely directed brain -* power. :Look how little England .has developed into a vast Empire of world wide influence and power. She thinks ; she has literature ; she has expanded witn heiv thougut-, and now Great . ' Britain is by far the mightiest moral and material force upon the globe. f We are most nearly akin to the Eng ? ? lish of any people of Europe ; we are - growing fast, but our people must be taught to think more, and Ave shall grow faster.' I listened. to this thoughtfully, for I knew that the dream of Empire for Dutch, and the restoration of Hol land's olden prestige and magnificence, had fastened itself upon not only the mine of Barbara Van Berg, but upon th it of the Count and Albert (over whotn she swayeJ great influence), and in fact the whole aristocracy and mer chant men of Holland. Already Am sterdam had received the first fruits of what might prove a golden, harvest, - ' aud the growth of Holland, fu'd the ?. ? growing prosperity of her greut'eities, seemed to give assurance of the fact. ' Are you not afraid that the- ambi- tion of tlie Netherlands may iead 'o a collision in S ruth Africa witn Eng \ ' land ?' I asked. - Aloert was about to speak, but he waited for his sister, who was also ready to reply. She answered quietly. 4 Why should it? Has not England ; ?' enough? Does she want to dominate and own the whole earth'?' v. r , ' But,' I replied, ' she does not want to own South Africa in the way you do ; she would establish thore a free people, with' a wide open door for the ! admittance of all other peoples who wished to go . there, and trade, and j

live and develop the country. You | ! want to see South Africa Dutch ; Great Biitain's desire is mainly to bee j it developing on free, .broad Anglo- i Saxon lines of cemocratic colonisa- | i tion. England already, holds the keys i | of all South Africa ; why should she i hand them over to Holland, or any other people who could not, and would not, govern. the country half so well I ' Do you think, Reg,' interposed Albert, 'tuat we Dutch have no ?patriotism ?' . - - ' Ah, T don't look at it in that light,' I answered, 'you know I am a bit of a cosmopolitan and hunrmitarian, as well as a Britisher and a Dutchman. ?The Dutch, have not been successful as rulers outside the Netherlands ; they want to make, everything ? come too much in. the way of Amsterdam.' ? But,' said Barbara, ' to have a strong government you must have a powerful centre to govern from ; there has been the secret 'of England's suc. cess as a colonizing power, and both Kussia aud Germany are learning from her.' . ' ? ' ?'.Do -you think the people of PIoU land will read your new hook ?' 1 asked, ' I know they will,': she answered quietly.' , ' Pardon me, but do you say all that you think whe-n writing?' I said. 'Sometime?,' she answered, 'but T dare not al.vays, for the whole world reads one's books now-a days ; but you know authors sometimes put things into a book which they would scarceiy say to their dearest friend. Thin again one must occasionally exercise reserve. You know the old proverb about 'Silence being golden.' ' ' Now,' I thought, ' here is avlever, thoughtful Dutchman, m iking history; but what a pity she has not the judge ment of a man.' Clever women, by the *vay, are too often partial in their judgment ; they are enthusiastic, confident,, and their in uitions show them just what they want to see. And moreover, the large generosity of a woman's ambition for people who are, to he/, her own, will often make her lightly regard any moral defect in tne means by which these purposes are to be achieved. Other women have written upon South African affairs besides Barbara Van Berg, and. this possibly appli ;s just as much to them as to her. ' But there are treaties in existence l-etween Great Britain and the Dutch of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State. How would you settle these matters ?' I asked. 'I would leave them to settle them selves,' said Barbara. ' The treaties and conventions ?ig- ed in Suuth Africa,' interposed Aloert, ' expressed the then voice of the people of the country in regard to certain matters ; sure'y you don't expect Eng land to rule South Africa by force of arms, as she does India 1 South Afri cans are as free as are Australians, or any ? other of the free colonies of the British Empire.' ' And more jo,' said Barbara, 'for thedoinine'it element all through South Africa is Dutch.' ' Then you think that Great Britain will, without war, allow South Africa to pass from her control into the hands of a Power wnich has already more than once met her in oattle, and would be almost certain to prove.unfriendly ?'. .'You .assume too much, Cous:n Reginald,' said Barbara., ' the Dutch are not unfriendly to England ; all that we ask is that the people of South Africa should be allowed to govern themselves in their own way. That way will be the way of the ascendant majority, whether English or Dutch.' 'Yes, and England -will- agree to it,'

said Albeit, 'for men like Gladstone and John Morley, and Stead, and Labouchere, and thousands of others, are in favor of fair play, and feel kind ly towards ihe Dutch ; and the great Nonconformist body of Englishmen will stand by the descendants of the-.

Dutch reformers to the full extent of their power, politically and socially.' 'ft would be a splendid , thing for , Holland,' I said quietly, ' to have the wnole of the great trade of South Africa comjng to Amsterdam.' ' To be Continued.