The present book had been intended for publication in South Africa before the end of 1899, with the object of laying bare the wicked and delusive aims of the Afrikaner Bond combination, to which the Anglo-Boer war alone is attributable, and to counteract its disastrous influences so far as then still possible. But until quite lately circumstances had conspired so as to prevent the writer from leaving the Transvaal, and when he at last obtained the required passport to Lourenço Marques he was there denied a permit to visit a colonial port. He therefore sailed for London in order to publish this book without more loss of time. Though too late to serve as a deterrent, the contents may be effective towards showing up the really guilty parties—the instigators and seducers of the deluded Boer nation, and so pave and widen the avenue of peace and of conciliation between Boer and Briton who were duped and victimized alike.
The exposure of the actual culprits and originators should also operate favourably, and in mitigation in behalf of the much less guilty Boers, so as to dispose the victors to the exercise of magnanimous consideration. In exposing the villainy of the Dutch coterie in Holland, the writer is far from impugning the honourable character of that nation, the better part of whom, when once undeceived, will be the first to reprobate and disown those arch-plotters who sacrificed the peace of South Africa for personal and national advantage.
Some other information regarding the Boers and South Africa will be found interspersed in this study, which will be found of use to the uninitiated and to intending emigrants to that sub-continent. As the reader proceeds with the examination of this book it will suggest comparisons and even analogies which may commend themselves as singularly apposite and instructive in relation with the study of the presently budding Eastern question.
NOTE TO SECOND EDITION
The issue of a Second Edition has afforded an opportunity to correct a few linguistic blemishes, but the work has only been very slightly revised.