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Extra info for Antonin Besse of Aden: The Founder of St Antony’s College Oxford

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Allow me only to remind you that as I defended your interests against those of your brother at a time when those interests were opposed, it is quite impossible that he (Emile) should be well disposed towards me. 4. bient6t, j'espere. ' Courmont was at Diredawa on his way back to Aden when he received AB's reply dated 24 March: 'Mon cher Courmont, I have received your little note of the 15th. I find it very difficult to reply to you; although my frankness has sometimes made a void all round me I cannot change my ways which are the logical outcome of my character.

The Settlement 47 The preamble to the Indenture refers to the Deed of Arrangement of November 1919 - 'Whereas the said partnership business has not been successful and its liabilities at the present time exceed the value of its assets ... '. And later it lays down:'The claims of the said Antonio Besse by reason of large advances made by him for the benefit of the partnership and otherwise far exceed those of the said John Jacob Stoner as the said John Jacob Stoner hereby acknowledges ... '. The next clause does not entirely tally with the wording of the original Deed of Arrangement: Whereas the assets of the business with headquarters at Aden and with branches or agencies in various parts of Arabia and Abyssinia and elsewhere in Africa which belonged to the said Antonio Besse prior to the execution of the Partnership Deed were never treated or intended to be treated by the said John Jacob Stoner and Antonio Besse as brought into or as forming part of the said partnership business as the said John Jacob Stoner hereby admits and acknowledges.

Left in sole charge in Aden Courmont at first was apprehensive. But demand for all goods the firm was handling was insatiable. In July alone the business showed a profit of 124000 Rs; and by that time Courmont was sufficiently confident of his future with Besse to tum down an offer of a well paid post in Indo-China. Correspondence between the two men was voluminous and cordial. Current deals were covered in minute detail. But for AB, at that time, Courmont was more than a business associate; he was one to whom he could open his heart.

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