|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.61(d)|
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
CHAPTER II BASTIN AND BICKLEY Behold me once more a man without an occupation, but now the possessor of about £900,000. It was a very considerable fortune, if not a large one in England; nothing like the millions of which I had dreamed, but still enough. To make the most of it and to be sure that it remained, I invested it very well, mostly in large mortgages at four per cent, which, if the security is good, do not depreciate in capital value. Never again did I touch a single speculative stock, who desired to think no more about money. It was at this time that I bought the Fulcombe property. It cost me about £120,000 of my capital, or with alterations, repairs, etc., say £150,000, on which sum it may pay a net two and a half per cent., not more. This £3,700 odd I have always devoted to the upkeep of the place, which is therefore in first-rate order. The rest I live on, or save. These arrangements, with the beautifying and furnishing of the house and the restoration of the church in memory of my father, occupied and amused me for a year or so, but when they were finished time began to hang heavy on my hands. What was the use of possessing about £20,000 a year when there was nothing upon which it could be spent? For after all my own wants were few and simple and the acquisition of valuable pictures and costly furniture is limited by space. Oh! in my small way I was like the weary King Ecclesiast. For I too made me great works and had possessions of great and small cattle (I tried farming and lost money over it!) and gathered me silver and gold and the peculiar treasure of kings, which I presume means whatever a man in authority chiefly desires, and soforth. But "behold all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun." So, notwithsta...