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INEED not tell you of the great quarrels, that have
happened in our neighbourhood since the death of the late lord Strutt “; how the parson +, and a cunning attorneyi, got him to settle his estate upon his cousin Philip Baboon | to the great disappointment of his cousin esquire South S. Some stick not to say, that the parson and the attorney forged a will, for which they were well paid by the family of the Baboons: let that be as it will, it is matter of fict, that the honour and estate have continued ever since in the person of Philip Baboon.
* Charles II, of Spain died without issue, and + Card. Portocarero and the t marshal of Harcourt, employed, as is supposed, by the house of Bourbon, prevailed upon him to make a will, by which he settled the succession of the Spanish monarchy upon | Philip of Bourbon duke of Anjou, though his right had by the most solemn renunciations been barred in favour of § the archduke Charles of Austria ;
K 4. You
You know, that the lord Strutts have for many years been possessed of a very great landed estate, well-conditioned, wooded, watered, with coal, salt, tin, copper, iron, &c. all within themselves; that it has been the misfortune of hat family to be the property of their stewards, tradesmen, and inferiour servants, which has brought great incumbrances upon them ; at the same time, their not abating of their expensive way of living has forced them to mortgage their best manors: it is credibly reported, that the butchers and bakers bill of a lord Strutt, that lived two hundred years ago, are not yet paid.
When Philip Baboon came first to the possession of the lord Strutt's estate, his tradesmen, as is usual upon such occasions, waited upon him to wish him joy and bespeak his custom ; the two chief were John Tullo the clothier, and Nic. Frog f the linen draper: they told him, that the Bulls and Frogs had served the lord Strutts with drapery-ware for many years; that they were honest and fair dealers; that their bills had never bech questioned; that the lord Strutts lived generously, and never used to dirty their fingers with } < n, ink, and counters; that his lordship might depond upon their honesty; that they would use him as kindly, as they had done his predecessors. The young lord seemed to take all in good part, and dismissed them with a deal of seeming content, assuring them he did not intend to change any of the honourable maxims of his predecessors.
• the English and
+ the Dutch congratulated Philip upon a succession, which they were not able to prevent : but to disappoint the ambition of
How Bull and Frog grew jealous, that the lord Strutt intended to give all his custom to his grandfather Lewis Baboon *.
IT happened unfortunately for the peace of our neighbourhood, that this young lord had an old cunning rogue, or (as the Scots call it) a fale loom, of a grandfather, that one might justly call a Jack of all trades f; sometimes you would see him behind his counter selling broad-cloth, sometimes measuring linen ; next day he would be dealing in mercery-ware: high heads, ribands, gloves, fans, and lace, he understood to a nicety; Charles Mather could not bubble a young beau better with a toy; nay, he would descend even to the selling of tape, garters, and shoebuckles; when shop was shut up, he would go about the neighbourhood, and earn half a crown by teaching the young men and maids to dance. By these methods he had acquired immense riches, which he used to squander away at back-sword £, quarter-staff, and cudgel-play, in which he took great pleasure, and challenged all the country. You will say it is no wonder if Bull and Frog should be jealous of this follow. “It is not impossible (says Frog to Bull)
* Lewis the XIVth, and hinder the French nation, whose
+ trade and character are thus described, and whose king had a
I strong disposition to war, from becoming too potent, an alliance was formed to “procure a reasonable satisfaction to the “house of Austria for its pretensions to the Spanish succession, “ and sufficient
- c. but
“ but this old rogue will take the management of the 3: “ young lord's business into his hands; besides the tl “rascal has good ware, and will serve him as cheap U. “ as any body. In that case, I leave you to judge W) “what must become of us and our families; we must o “starve, or turn journeymen to old Lewis Baboon; ū “ therefore, neighbour, I hold it advisable, that we W) “write to young lord Strutt to know the bottom of o “ this matter.” it. CHAP. III. A copy of Bull and Frog's letter to lord Strutt. K MY LORD, - me! by: I SUPPOSE your lordship knows, that the Bulls his and the Frogs have served the lord Strutts with all k sorts of drapery-ware time out of mind ; and whereas (d we are jealous, not without reason, that your lordship () intends henceforth to buy of your grandsire old Lewis ps Baboon; this is to inform your lordship, that this th proceeding does not suit with the circumstances of 3. our families, who have lived and made a good figure t in the world by the generosity of the lord Strutts, Therefore we think fit to acquaint your lordship, that you must find sufficient security to us *, our heirs and * “ security to England and Holland for their dominions, na“ vigation, and commerce, and to prevent the union of the two “ monarchics France and Spain.” To effect these purposes, queen Ann was by assigns, —
assigns, that you will not employ Lewis Baboon; or else we will take our remedy at law, clap an action upon you of 20,000l. for old debts, seize and distrain your goods and chattels, which, considering your lordship's circumstances, will plunge you into difficulties, from which it will not be easy to extricate yourself; therefore we hope, when your lordship has better considered on it, you will comply with the desire of
Your loving friends,
Some of Bull's friends advised him to take gentler methods with the young lord; but John naturally loved rough play. It is impossible to express the surprise of the lord Strutt upon the receipt of this letter; he was not flush in ready either to go to law, or clear old debts, neither could he find good bail; he offered to bring matters to a friendly accommodation; and promised upon his word of honour, that he would not change his drapers; but all to no purpose, for Bull and Frog saw clearly that old Lewis would have the cheating of him.