Every one is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows to anybody.
-- Pudd'nhead Wilson New Calendar.
W HEN I scribbled in my note-book a year ago the paragraph which ends the preceding chapter, it was meant to indicate, in an extravagant form, two things: the conflicting nature of the information conveyed by the citizen to the stranger concerning South African politics, and the resulting confusion created in the stranger's mind thereby.
But it does not seem so very extravagant now. Nothing could in that disturbed and excited time make South African politics clear or quite rational to the citizen of the country because his personal interest and his political prejudices were in his way; and nothing could make those politics clear or rational to the stranger, the sources of his information being such as they were.
I was in South Africa some little time. When I arrived there the political pot was boiling fiercely. Four months previously, Jameson had plunged over the Transvaal border with about six hundred armed horsemen at his back, to go to the "relief of the women and children" of Johannesburg; on the fourth day of his march the Boers had defeated him in battle, and carried him and his men to Pretoria,