(notes by John Walker)


First published in the Cape Times (Jan 15 1908) in an article reporting the lines found framed on the wall of the farmhouse named ‘Gloria’, near Villiersdorp, South Africa. Variations to the text are shown in the Kipling Journal for March 1971 (KJ177, page 6) and in American Book Prices Current 1978-79, page 967. The text here is as reported in the Kipling Journal for October 1949 (KJ091, page 3). It is quoted in ORG 801, with the title ‘Gloria’.  (in the list of poems in ORG V.I. it is incorrectly listed as 861 rather than 801)

In Rosenbaum no 672 (Barbara Rosenbaum. Index of English Literary Manuscripts IV 1880-1900 part 2) it has the title ‘The Making of the Place’. It is included in Thomas Pinney’s Cambridge Edition of the Poems of Rudyard Kipling CUP 2013 Vol III, page 2087.

The poem

At the Annual Luncheon of the Kipling Society in October 1970, the Rt. Hon. The Viscount Cobham quoted a version of the quatrain, and told how it was written out by Kipling during a visit to Lord Cobham’s grandfather, Charles Leonard, at his farm in South Africa. They had, it can be assumed, been discussing the constant difficulties of farming in that country.



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