The Story of an African Farm

by Olive Schreiner

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Part 1: Chapter 9 Summary

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Bonaparte is waiting for Waldo to arrive, and the boy is coming home, unaware of what has happened in his absence. Waldo is holding his model of the sheep shearing machine and thinking of all the things he will buy for everyone when it is sold and produced. He will get books for himself, books that can answer his many questions. He feels close to God at that moment, and he has brought little presents for his father, the girls, and even Tant’ Sannie. Bonaparte meets Waldo with the news that Otto is dead, and he laughs as he tells the boy.

Bonaparte intends to take over Otto’s cabin. Tant’ Sannie would prefer Waldo to have it, for she is afraid of the German’s ghost, but she gives in to Bonaparte. Bonaparte looks for money or valuables in the cabin, and he finds a simple wedding ring that he plans to give to Tant’ Sannie. Then something taps him sharply on the head, and the ring mysteriously disappears. Bonaparte flees the cabin.

Lyndall brings Waldo some food and tells him that he should forget what has happened. She also says that Hans the ostrich, who hates Bonaparte, is the one who tapped him on the head and frightened him. Waldo, in his pain, announces that there is no God.

Bonaparte tells Tant’ Sannie that now that he is master of the farm, Waldo will get away with nothing. They call Waldo in, and Bonaparte trips and humiliates the boy while Tant’ Sannie and the maid laugh. Tant’ Sannie thinks Waldo must be mad because he talks to himself. Bonaparte threatens to whip the boy.

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Part 1: Chapter 8 Summary


Part 1: Chapter 10 Summary