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"WANTED, A PARTNER."
How often does our heading attract the eye when looking through The Times and other papers! One after another do we gaze at, and, naturally at last, turn an inquisitive attention to the particulara set forth. This is more especially the case when we have a sum lying idle at our bankers-and remember that the Consols or Reduced, or other reliable investment will not average more than 3, 3, 6 per cent. for our money. Turning from this we behold Freehold Ground Rents advertised at twenty-five years' purchase, and Leasehold Improved ditto only offered to pay 5 per cent. on the investment. An old aunt, or penurious parent, has suddenly surpassed our expectations by becoming defunct and leaving us some £10,000 as our portion of the spoils, and the first anxiety is to make the best of our good fortune. We calculate again and again what we can decently live upon, and remembering the correspondence in the papers in which it was sought to be proved that no one was justified in marrying on less than £300 per annum, we naturally look out for a safe opportunity of making that 300 into 5, or perhaps a little more-that our intended Cara Sposa may live on something better than bread-and-cheese, and be enabled to dress in something better than russet grey. Led by these desires, a client of mine had been the daily peruser of the various advertising columns for nearly a month gone bye, when he came to my office, and laid the following three advertisements before me soliciting my advice thereon. The first ran thus:
N consequence of a partner retiring from the business, a gentleman is required
capital thus drawn out. No previous knowledge of the business required, and five per cent. guaranteed on the amount introduced. References given and required.
The second was as follows:
A PUBLIC Company is in need of a young and enterprising Man of good address to
fill the post of Secretary. He will be required to introduce one or more parties who will qualify for the direction, or he must be prepared to take up shares to the extent of £2,000. None are requested to apply who cannot fulfil either of the above conditions. Letters (in the first instance) to be addressed to P. Q. R., &c., &c.
The last read thus:
ROM 5 to 10,000 pounds required to Patent an Article which must come into general demand. Twenty per cent. per annum will be the lowest profit that will be returned. Apply to Inventor, &c., &c.
My client had the sum of £15,000 invested in Consols, and been accustomed as a batchelor to live up to £500 per year, and having been wounded by Cupid's darts, ardently desired to wed the object of
his affections. He did not desire to retrench his expenditure, but rather to raise his means up to his anticipated wants, and therefore was prepared to change the nature of his investments and undergo the consequent risk of his principal. The lady of his love was a member of a family who derived their income from the precarious source of a paternal holding of a Government situation, which had gradually risen from two hundred per annum to its present amount of one thousand a-year. The gradual rise in his position had entailed therewith the supposed necessity for an increased expenditure, and a large family of girls had but the prospect of division of a sum of £2,000, for which his life had been insured on his attaining his present position. Instead of looking out as a partner for life some rising tradesman or independent yeoman, each girl expected that her future husband should maintain a like establishment to which she now was accustomed, and fully considered herself equal to any position thus desired. The fond mother looked upon her daughters as destined to hold a similar position with herself, and considered their accomplishments a full equivalent for wealth on the other side.
Blinded by the attractions of his fiancée, my friend's desires for aggrandizement were increased on her account, yet he retained sufficient sense to have these matters investigated before he laid himself open to any tangible engagement, and desired me to make inquiries into their bona fides, and report thereon. Having accepted the duties, I set on foot private inquiries as to the originators of the advertisements and the nature of the risks to which my client was exposed, and being more prepossessed in favour of the first quoted, I directed my attentions in the first instance to that one. Having replied to the same, demanding full particulars, I was met by a reference to a firm of solicitors who stood high in public estimation. Having made an appointment, I had an interview with the partner who conducted this particular business, and was informed that the parties carried on an oldestablished trade in connexion with our Colonies, and that their average returns were over half-a-million sterling. The reason for the advertisement was the retirement of the senior member, and the consequent withdrawal of his capital, but that the surviving members, who had entered the concern as clerks, considered they could carry on the business provided they could replace only half of the sum thus drawn out, as the credit of the establishment was A1, and their bankers were ready to give them any accommodation they might reasonably require. This at first sight seemed very enticing, and had all subsequent matters been equally satisfactory I should have been induced to advise my client to close with their proposition. I, however, required on his behalf to investigate the accounts of the preceding three years, which was assented to on their behalf. I accordingly took a statement of their affairs at the former date, which I compared with their present position, and the apparent deficiency led to an investigation of its causes. found that the concern was wearing itself out by the decadence of its old correspondents, and although the infusion of younger blood, combined with a knowledge of that peculiar commerce, might retrieve its position, the mere introduction of capital would only inevitably tend to bring the new partner into the threatened vortex of ruin which awaited the solvency of the firm. The old fox had saved his brush,
and I could not allow my innocent to fall into the jaws of the wolf. Respectfully declining the proposal, I then wrote to ask if No. 2 advertisement was still open, and received a reply by return of post that the board of direction was filled up, but that the secretaryship was still open if my client was prepared to invest the sum of two thousand pounds in shares, as set forth in their advertisement, and named a time when the board would sit and receive the application. I had not much faith in the stability of a company which required such an advance from its contemplated servant, but determined to pursue the inquiry that I might get another wrinkle in my experience. Accordingly I applied for a prospectus to lay before my principal, and received by return of post one headed
"THE Great Do Nothing Company," in shares of £10 each, limited liability. Capital, £1,000,000. This company proposes to buy up all existing patents of any value, and to work them on the most economical principles, thus affording ample facilities for the purchase of their productions by a discerning public at prices which will enable the directors to assure the shareholders dividends at the rate of 50 per cent. per annum. The deposit and first call will be confined to £5 per share, and the further calls limited to £1 per share every three months."
Two noble lords, a baronet, three stockbrokers, and two bankrupt merchants formed the board, and the managing director was my old acquaintance Mr. Thomas Thompson Crafty. I need not say that the magnificent offer of £800 per annum for the secretary's salary did not induce me to recommend my friend to accept the appointment, and the offered commission of £10 per cent. tempt me to advise his investing his £2,000 in their shares.
The proposed Patent then attracted my attention, and I found the author of this advertisement to be one of those geniuses who neglect the realities of life for the visions of their own brain. A new plan for superseding the use of coal as an article of combustion was to be developed, and a patent taken out for introducing the use of tarred rags and waste paper, was the tempting bait that was to draw the hard cash out of my friend's pockets. His own common sense led to the rejection of this lucid speculation and the relinquishing this last prop of his before elevated hopes.
He desired me then to draw up an advertisement to be inserted on his behalf, which I promised to do on his allowing me a few days for deliberation. At the end of a week he again made his appearance, and said that his lady was very anxious to know the results of our endeavours. I then laid before him the following as the result of my ruminations, recommending him to consult with her before he inserted the same:
WANTED, a Partner for Life, by the advertiser, a young gentleman of twenty-five
years of age. He possesses a settled income of over £600 per annum, which he does not intend to risk in any perilous speculation. The lady who should answer this must be prepared to take him 'For richer, for poorer-for better, for worse,' and must make up her mind to do her part in the mutual struggles they may have to undergo. She must assent to commence their joint-expenditure at £300 per year, and lay by the other half of his income for the next seven years. He proposes to take a real cottage in the country, and perhaps turn his attention to rural pursuits. She must make up her mind to abandon for that time the abodes of fashion and display, and serve an apprenticeship to economy and domestic duties. A lady with a refined intellect and a taste for music and polite literature will find a true companion in the advertiser.
As this is a bona fide intimation of the advertiser's intention, it is desired that non will apply but she who is fully determined to carry out the full details herein set forthe Apply to Jacob Hearty, Esq., care of &c., &c.
This I enclosed in an envelope addressed to himself, and made him promise not to open it until she asked him what I had done, and then to tell her I had written him a copy of my proposed advertisement and of his pledge.
That same night she again resumed her inquiry, and he took the opportunity afforded. She was extremely anxious to see the contents, and after much entreaty he showed her my enclosure. She took the implied advice to herself and him with much seriousness, and eventually agreed that I had indicated the right path to be pursued, and asked to be introduced to myself. An early day was named, when 1 had the pleasure of receiving them, and in answer to their jointinquiries I pointed out the sure independence and happiness they would lay the foundation of in so doing. I advised them to keep their determination to themselves, which they did, and in about three months' time, at their wedding, I witnessed the results of my proposed advertisement headed
"WANTED, A PARTNER."
"THE BEAUTIES" OF BADEN.
There is no other place except Goodwood were racing can be enjoyed as it can here, and to those nauseated with the vulgar uproar of English courses Baden possesses a charm par se. When to this is added
really good racing it becomes perfection or nearly so, and there is no doubt that the sport this year has been worthy of some of our firstrate meetings, &c., &c.- The Times.
Watteau would have delighted to paint this scene, and that before dinner in the Lichtenthal, where the ladies of the Wood of Boulogne assemble to play at Paris and renew the recollection of the Lake: in that case not only the picture itself is pretty, but the frame cannot be surpassed. Perhaps in all Europe there is no gayer or prettier little scene than the Lichtenthaler allée at six p.m., when the band is over, and even the hardest players allow themselves an hour for air and refreshment, and go to bathe themselves in the golden rays of the setting sun which flood that happy valley. A Black Forest sunset must be seen to be believed. It is a sight! &c., &c.-The Daily Telegraph.
The place is as charming as ever, many very desirable improvements having been effected since my last visit here. M. Wiech is, as usual, active and energetic in the pursuit of his duties, finding the sinews of war for the stakes, doubling those of York and Doncaster, and he never throws away a chance to promote the comfort or pleasure of the English visitors. In fact, he is quite an institution at Baden, and every one that has been brought in contact with him must acknowledge that to his management the success of the Baden entertainments is in
M. Weich's reputation for
a great measure to be attributed. everything that is straitforward, honourable, and obliging, being European, I cannot add more than say that not a stone was left unturned to add to the comfort of the English visitors, and M. Dupressoir must deem himself very fortunate at having so able a Chargé d'Affaires at Baden, &c., &c.-The Morning Post.
I encounter M. Dupressoir, radiant of visage, in gallant attendance on the Nilsson, who is singing Marguerite as she never sang it beforeand very charming she looks, and very many are the amateur Fausts who would like to play that rôle-and I go to see M. Weich, who is as usual in that state of work known as "up to the neck," but who finds time to welcome me with effusion, and to descant on the crowds that thronged the rooms and the walks on the preceding evening. And there is no mistake in this. Baden is fuller than it can well hold, &c., &c.- The Field.
Hot as the weather was at York, it was cool by comparison with what we, a couple of brother professionals, experienced between Brussels and Cologne, and on the Rhine boat; but on reaching our destination, it was satisfactory to learn that nothing like the intense heat in question had been experienced at Baden Baden. Monsieur Weich-the most affable and obliging of secretaries; upon whose shoulders rests the prosperity of the races, if not of Baden itselfpredicted a most successful meeting; and from all accounts, "The Queen of the Oos," which never looked more gay and charming, is as crowded as ever. We again thank Monsieur Dupressoir and his amiable chef du cabinet for a very agreeable visit to the charming capital of the romantic Fôret Noire, &c., &c.-The Sporting Gazette.
Bravo Baden! where not only shall the sport, the scenery and the Nilsson be better than anywhere else; but where, thanks of course to Monsieur Dupressoir and Monsieur Wiech, the sunsets, the thunderstorms, and even the fine weather are all finer than in any other part of the world!
There love had never a fear or doubt;
The Prima Donna ne'er was out
Of temper-or of tune;
The streets were paved with perigord pies
Nothing looked black but woman's eyes;
Nothing grew old but wine.
And every tree was rich with fruits,
And every field with flowers,
And every zephyr wakened lutes
In passion-haunted bowers.
The horses like the lightning went,
And I held my tongue at an argument,