Date: Mon, 25 Aug 1997 21:08:37 -0400 From: Orin Hargraves Subject: squires Hi Lynne, In England squire is still a term of address that working-class market traders use to flatter potential customers. Also in England, it is customary to write "Esq." after any man's name on business mail -- stuff that your bank sends you, e.g., and you don't have to be a lawyer to earn= the title! t I'm not familiar with the US usages, except the joking ones you refer to -- though others responding have attested these. All the best, Orin Hargraves