So we opened the box; there was in it indeed what I did not expect, for I thought he had sunk his estate rather than raised it; but he produced me in goldsmiths' bills, and stock in the English East India Company, about sixteen thousand pounds sterling; then he gave into my hands nine assignments upon the Bank of Lyons in France, and two upon the rents of the town-house in Paris, amounting in the whole to £5800 crowns per annum, or annual rent, as it is called there; and lastly, the sum of 30,000 rixdollars in the Bank of Amsterdam; besides some jewels and gold in the box to the value of about £1500 or £1600, among which was a very good necklace of pearl of about £200 value; and that he pulled out and tied about my neck, telling me that should not be reckoned into the account.
I was equally pleased and surprised, and it was with an inexpressible joy that I saw him so rich.
'You might well tell me', said I, 'that you were able to make me countess, and maintain me as such.' In short, he was immensely rich; for, besides all this, he showed me, which was the reason of his being so busy among the books, I say, he showed me several adventures he had abroad in the business of his merchandise; as particularly an eighth share in an East India ship then abroad; an account-courant with a merchant at Cadiz in Spain; about £3000 lent upon bottomry, upon ships gone to the Indies; and a large cargo of goods in a merchant's hands for sale at Lisbon in Portugal; so that in his books there was about 12,000 more; all which put together, made about £27,000 sterling, and £1320 a year.
I stood amazed at this account, as well I might, and said nothing to him for a good while, and the rather because I saw him still busy looking over his books. After a while, as I was going to express my wonder, 'Hold, my dear', says he, 'this it not all neither'; then he pulled me out some old seals, and small parchment rolls, which I did not understand; but he told me they were a right of reversion which he had to a paternal estate in his family, and a mortgage of 14,000 rixdollars, which he had upon it, in the hands of the present possessor; so that was about £3000 more.
But now, hold again', says he, 'for I must pay my debts out of all this, and they are very great, I assure you'; and the first he said was a black article of 8000 pistoles, which he had a lawsuit about at Paris, but had it awarded against him, which was the loss he had told me of, and which made him leave Paris in disgust; that in other accounts he owed about £5300 sterling; but after all this, upon the whole, he had still £17,000 clear stock in money and £1320 a year in rent.
After some pause, it came to my turn to speak. 'Well', says I, '’tis very hard a gentleman with such a fortune as this should come over to England, and marry a wife with nothing; it shall never', says I, 'be said but what I have, I'll bring into the public stock'; so I began to produce.
First, I pulled out the mortgage which good Sir Robert had procured for me, the annual rent £700 per annum; the principal money £14,000.
Secondly, I pulled out another mortgage upon land, procured by the same faithful friend, which at three times had advanced £12,000.
Thirdly, I pulled him out a parcel of little securities, procured by several hands, by fee-farm rents, and such petty mortgages as those times afforded, amounting to £10,800 principal money, and paying six hundred and thirty-six pounds a-year. So that in the whole there was two thousand and fifty-six pounds a year ready money constantly coming in.