DEAR ABBY: My wife died last year, leaving some very nice jewelry and good clothing - including two fur coats. My three daughters-in-law are all too small to use the clothing except for purses and maybe some coats. I am going to get married again, and my new wife could use it all. She comes from a very poor background and has never had anything nice. Would it be in bad taste to offer these things to her (after marriage)? What would my daughters-in-law think?

I cannot afford to buy such nice things for my new wife right now. I am told there's a very high-class resale store that buys and sells "good-as-new" clothing. - PUZZLEDDEAR PUZZLED: It would be very generous of you to offer a few items of jewelry that belonged to your late wife to your daughters-in-law.

As for your bride-to-be, the choice should be hers. Perhaps she would enjoy your wife's things - but on the chance that she might feel uncomfortable trying to literally fill her shoes (etc.), sell them and use the proceeds to buy her some lovely new things of her own.

DEAR ABBY: My very dear friend and I are both in our 60s. We have been seeing each other socially for eight years, with no plans to marry.

He drinks beer constantly, usually starting at noon. He doesn't "chug-a-lug" it, but nurses it along. However, when he gets up to throw the empty can in the recycler, he immediately goes to the refrigerator for another beer, and the process continues until bedtime.

In one day, he can easily consume a dozen beers! I have talked to him as gently as possible about this, but he just laughs and says he can handle it - he's been doing it for years.

I have driven him home many times. Abby, this is getting to me. I'm beginning not to want to be around him anymore. Between the beer drinking and the cigar smoke, frankly, he stinks!

We do not live together, so I could ease out of the relationship, but I hate to end a longtime friendship. He insists that he's a beer drinker, not an alcoholic. What are the facts? - PATIENCE STRAINED

DEAR STRAINED: There is as much alcohol in a can of beer as there is in a shot of whiskey served in a bar (11/2 ounces). So, if your friend drinks one beer after another every day from noon until bedtime, regardless of what he calls himself he drinks like an alcoholic.

DEAR READERS: How times have changed. The following order was issued in Ethiopia in 1935 by the then-emperor, Haile Selassie:

All men and boys able to carry a spear go to Addis Ababa.

Every married man will bring his wife to cook and wash for him.

Every unmarried man will bring any unmarried woman he can find to cook and wash for him.

Women with babies, the blind, and those too aged to carry a spear are excused.

Anyone who qualifies for battle and is found at home will be hanged!

People are eating them up! For Abby's favorite recipes, send a long, business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada), to: Dear Abby, Cookbooklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054. (Postage is included.)