Plymouth is in Devon.
Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1050-1065. 1052. At this time Griffin, the Welsh king, plundered in Herefordshire till he came very nigh to Leominster; and they gathered against him both the landsmen and the Frenchmen from the castle; and there were slain very many good men of the English, and also of the French. This was on the same day thirteen years after that Edwin was slain with his companions. In the same year advised the king and his council, that ships should be sent out to Sandwich, and that Earl Ralph and Earl Odda (59) should be appointed headmen thereto. Then went Earl Godwin (51) out from Bruges with his ships to Ysendyck; and sailed forth one day before midsummer-eve, till he came to the Ness that is to the south of Romney. When it came to the knowledge of the earls out at Sandwich, they went out after the other ships; and a land-force was also ordered out against the ships. Meanwhile Earl Godwin (51) had warning, and betook himself into Pevensey: and the weather was so boisterous, that the earls could not learn what had become of Earl Godwin. But Earl Godwin then went out again until he came back to Bruges; and the other ships returned back again to Sandwich. Then it was advised that the ships should go back again to London, and that other earls and other pilots should be appointed over them. But it was delayed so long that the marine army all deserted; and they all betook themselves home. When Earl Godwin (51) understood that, he drew up his sail and his ship: and they (70) went west at once to the Isle of Wight; and landing there, they plundered so long that the people gave them as much as they required of them. Then proceeded they westward until they came to Portland, where they landed and did as much harm as they could possibly do. Meanwhile Harold (30) had gone out from Ireland with nine ships, and came up at Porlock with his ships to the mouth of the Severn, near the boundaries of Somerset and Devonshire, and there plundered much. The land-folk collected against him, both from Somerset and from Devonshire: but he put them to flight, and slew there more than thirty good thanes, besides others; and went soon after about Penwithstert [Note. Possibly Plymouth], where was much people gathered against him; but he spared not to provide himself with meat, and went up and slew on the spot a great number of the people—seizing in cattle, in men, and in money, whatever he could. Then went he eastward to his father; and they went both together eastward (71) until they came to the Isle of Wight, where they seized whatever had been left them before. Thence they went to Pevensey, and got out with them as many ships as had gone in there, and so proceeded forth till they came to the Ness; (72) getting all the ships that were at Romney, and at Hithe, and at Folkstone. Then ordered King Edward (49) to fit out forty smacks that lay at Sandwich many weeks, to watch Earl Godwin (51), who was at Bruges during the winter; but he nevertheless came hither first to land, so as to escape their notice. And whilst he abode in this land, he enticed to him all the Kentish men, and all the boatmen from Hastings, and everywhere thereabout by the sea-coast, and all the men of Essex and Sussex and Surrey, and many others besides. Then said they all that they would with him live or die. When the fleet that lay at Sandwich had intelligence about Godwin's expedition, they set sail after him; but he escaped them, and betook himself wherever he might: and the fleet returned to Sandwich, and so homeward to London. When Godwin understood that the fleet that lay at Sandwich was gone home, then went he back again to the Isle of Wight, and lay thereabout by the sea-coast so long that they came together—he and his son Earl Harold. But they did no great harm after they came together; save that they took meat, and enticed to them all the land-folk by the sea-coast and also upward in the land. And they proceeded toward Sandwich, ever alluring forth with them all the boatmen that they met; and to Sandwich they came with an increasing army. They then steered eastward round to Dover, and landing there, took as many ships and hostages as they chose, and so returned to Sandwich, where they did the same; and men everywhere gave them hostages and provisions, wherever they required them.
70 i.e. Earl Godwin and his crew.
71 i.e. from the Isle of Portland; where Godwin had landed after the plunder of the Isle of Wight.
72 i.e. Dungeness; where they collected all the ships stationed in the great bay formed by the ports of Romney, Hithe, and Folkstone.
On 20 May 1339 a French fleet raided Plymouth.
On 24 Jun 1386 John Holland 1st Duke Exeter 1352-1400 (34) and Elizabeth Lancaster Duchess Exeter 1363-1426 (23) were married at Plymouth. They were half second cousins once removed. He a great grandson of Edward "Longshanks" I King England 1239-1307. She a granddaughter of King Edward III England.
On 25 May 1399 Margaret Aumale 1343-1399 (56) died in Plymouth.
In 1555 Thomas Carew 1527-1565 (28) was elected MP Plymouth.
In 1584 John Gayer Lord Mayor of London 1584-1649 was born at Plymouth.
On 12 Apr 1587 an English fleet commanded by Francis Drake Privateer 1540-1596 (47) left Plymouth.
On 13 Jun 1596 Robert Devereux 2nd Earl Essex 1565-1601 (30) departed from Plymouth with a fleet of 150 English and Dutch ships divided into four squads with 6,360 private soldiers, 1,000 English volunteers, and 6,772 sailors.
Charles Howard 1st Earl Nottingham 1536-1624 (60) was admiral in command. Robert Devereux 2nd Earl Essex 1565-1601 (30) commanded the land forces. Edward Conway 1st Viscount Conway 1564-1631 (32) commanded a foot Regiment.
Anthony Ashley 1st Baronet St Giles Wimborne St Giles 1561-1628 (35) represented Queen Elizabeth (62).
Toby Caulfeild 1st Baron Caulfeild 1565-1627 (30) was present.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 10 December 1664. 10 Dec 1664. Lay long, at which I am ashamed, because of so many people observing it that know not how late I sit up, and for fear of Sir W. Batten's (63) speaking of it to others, he having staid for me a good while.
At the office all the morning, where comes my Lord Brunkard (44) with his patent in his hand, and delivered it to Sir J. Minnes (65) and myself, we alone being there all the day, and at noon I in his coach with him to the 'Change, where he set me down; a modest civil person he seems to be, but wholly ignorant in the business of the Navy as possible, but I hope to make a friend of him, being a worthy man.
Thence after hearing the great newes of so many Dutchmen being brought in to Portsmouth and elsewhere, which it is expected will either put them upon present revenge or despair, I with Sir W. Rider and Cutler to dinner all alone to the Great James, where good discourse, and, I hope, occasion of getting something hereafter.
After dinner to White Hall to the Fishery, where the Duke (31) was with us.
So home, and late at my office, writing many letters, then home to supper and to bed.
Yesterday come home, and this night I visited Sir W. Pen (43), who dissembles great respect and love to me, but I understand him very well. Major Holmes (42) is come from Guinny, and is now at Plymouth with great wealth, they say.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 11 January 1665. 11 Jan 1665. Up, and very angry with my boy for lying long a bed and forgetting his lute. To my office all the morning.
At noon to the 'Change, and so home to dinner.
After dinner to Gresham College to my Lord Bruncker (45) and Commissioner Pett (54), taking, Mr. Castle (36) with me there to discourse over his draught of a ship he is to build for us. Where I first found reason to apprehend Commissioner Pett (54) to be a man of an ability extraordinary in any thing, for I found he did turn and wind Castle (36) like a chicken in his business, and that most pertinently and mister-like, and great pleasure it was to me to hear them discourse, I, of late having studied something thereof, and my Lord Bruncker (45) is a very able person also himself in this sort of business, as owning himself to be a master in the business of all lines and Conicall Sections.
Thence home, where very late at my office doing business to my content, though [God] knows with what ado it was that when I was out I could get myself to come home to my business, or when I was there though late would stay there from going abroad again.
To supper and to bed. This evening, by a letter from Plymouth, I hear that two of our ships, the Leopard and another, in the Straights, are lost by running aground; and that three more had like to have been so, but got off, whereof Captain Allen (53) one: and that a Dutch fleete are gone thither; which if they should meet with our lame ships, God knows what would become of them. This I reckon most sad newes; God make us sensible of it! This night, when I come home, I was much troubled to hear my poor canary bird, that I have kept these three or four years, is dead.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 27 February 1665. 27 Feb 1665. Up and to St. James's, where we attended the Duke (31) as usual. This morning I was much surprized and troubled with a letter from Mrs. Bland, that she is left behind, and much trouble it cost me this day to find out some way to carry her after the ships to Plymouth, but at last I hope I have done it.
At noon to the 'Change to inquire what wages the Dutch give in their men-of-warr at this day, and I hear for certain they give but twelve guilders at most, which is not full 24s., a thing I wonder at. At home to dinner, and then in Sir J. Minnes's (65) coach, my wife and I with him, and also Mercer, abroad, he and I to White Hall, and he would have his coach to wait upon my wife on her visits, it being the first time my wife hath been out of doors (but the other day to bathe her) several weeks. We to a Committee of the Council to discourse concerning pressing of men; but, Lord! how they meet; never sit down: one comes, now another goes, then comes another; one complaining that nothing is done, another swearing that he hath been there these two hours and nobody come. At last it come to this, my Lord Annesly (43), says he, "I think we must be forced to get the King (34) to come to every committee; for I do not see that we do any thing at any time but when he is here". And I believe he said the truth and very constant he is at the council table on council-days; which his predecessors, it seems, very rarely did; but thus I perceive the greatest affair in the world at this day is likely to be managed by us. But to hear how my Lord Barkeley (63) and others of them do cry up the discipline of the late times here, and in the former Dutch warr is strange, wishing with all their hearts that the business of religion were not so severely carried on as to discourage the sober people to come among us, and wishing that the same law and severity were used against drunkennesse as there was then, saying that our evil living will call the hand of God upon us again.
Thence I by coach to Ratcliffe highway, to the plate-maker's, and he has begun my Lord Sandwich's (39) plate very neatly, and so back again. Coming back I met Colonell Atkins, who in other discourse did offer to give me a piece to receive of me 20 when he proves the late news of the Dutch, their drowning our men, at Guinny, and the truth is I find the generality of the world to fear that there is something of truth in it, and I do fear it too.
Thence back by coach to Sir Philip Warwicke's (55); and there he did contract with me a kind of friendship and freedom of communication, wherein he assures me to make me understand the whole business of the Treasurer's business of the Navy, that I shall know as well as Sir G. Carteret (55) what money he hath; and will needs have me come to him sometimes, or he meet me, to discourse of things tending to the serving the King (34): and I am mighty proud and happy in becoming so known to such a man. And I hope shall pursue it.
Thence back home to the office a little tired and out of order, and then to supper and to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 18 May 1665. 18 May 1665. Up, and with Sir J. Minnes (66) to the Duke of Albemarle (56), where we did much business, and I with good content to myself; among other things we did examine Nixon and Stanesby, about their late running from two Dutchmen1 for which they are committed to a vessel to carry them to the fleete to be tried. A most fowle unhandsome thing as ever was heard, for plain cowardice on Nixon's part.
Thence with the Duke of Albemarle (56) in his coach to my Lord Treasurer (58), and there was before the King (34) (who ever now calls me by my name) and Chancellor (56), and many other great Lords, discoursing about insuring of some of the King's goods, wherein the King (34) accepted of my motion that we should; and so away, well pleased.
To the office, and dined, and then to the office again, and abroad to speak with Sir G. Carteret (55); but, Lord! to see how fraile a man I am, subject to my vanities, that can hardly forbear, though pressed with never so much business, my pursuing of pleasure, but home I got, and there very busy very late. Among other things consulting with Mr. Andrews about our Tangier business, wherein we are like to meet with some trouble, and my Lord Bellasses's (50) endeavour to supplant us, which vexes my mind; but, however, our undertaking is so honourable that we shall stand a tug for it I think.
So home to supper and to bed.
Note 1. Captain Edward Nixon, of the "Elizabeth", and Captain John Stanesby, of the "Eagle". John Lanyon wrote to the Navy Commissioners from Plymouth, May 16th: "Understands from the seamen that the conduct of Captains Nixon and Stanesby in their late engagement with two Dutch capers was very foul; the night they left the Dutch, no lights were put out as formerly, and though in sight of them in the morning, they still kept on their way; the Eagle lay by some time, and both the enemy's ships plied on her, but finding the Elizabeth nearly out of sight she also made sail; it is true the wind and sea were high, but there were no sufficient reasons for such endeavours to get from them". (Calendar of State Papers, Domestic, 1664-65, p. 367). Both captains were tried; Nixon was condemned to be shot but Stanesby was cleared, and Charnock asserts that he was commander the "Happy Return" in 1672.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 27 May 1665. 27 May 1665. Up, and to the office, where all the morning; at noon dined at home, and then to my office again, where late, and so to bed, with my mind full of fears for the business of this office and troubled with that of Tangier, concerning which Mr. Povy (51) was with me, but do give me little help, but more reason of being troubled. So that were it not for our Plymouth business I would be glad to be rid of it.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 26 August 1665. 26 Aug 1665. Up betimes, and prepared to my great satisfaction an account for the board of my office disbursements, which I had suffered to run on to almost £120. That done I down by water to Greenwich, where we met the first day my Lord Bruncker (45), Sir J. Minnes (66), and I, and I think we shall do well there, and begin very auspiciously to me by having my account abovesaid passed, and put into a way of having it presently paid. When we rose I find Mr. Andrews and Mr. Yeabsly, who is just come from Plymouth, at the door, and we walked together toward my Lord Bruncker's (45), talking about their business, Yeabsly being come up on purpose to discourse with me about it, and finished all in a quarter of an hour, and is gone again. I perceive they have some inclination to be going on with their victualling-business for a while longer before they resign it to Mr. Gauden, and I am well contented, for it brings me very good profit with certainty, yet with much care and some pains.
We parted at my Lord Bruncker's (45) doore, where I went in, having never been there before, and there he made a noble entertainment for Sir J. Minnes (66), myself, and Captain Cocke (48), none else saving some painted lady that dined there, I know not who she is. But very merry we were, and after dinner into the garden, and to see his and her chamber, where some good pictures, and a very handsome young woman for my lady's woman.
Thence I by water home, in my way seeing a man taken up dead, out of the hold of a small catch that lay at Deptford. I doubt it might be the plague, which, with the thought of Dr. Burnett, did something disturb me, so that I did not what I intended and should have done at the office, as to business, but home sooner than ordinary, and after supper, to read melancholy alone, and then to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 10 January 1666. 10 Jan 1666. Up, and by coach to Sir G. Downing (41), where Mr. Gawden met me by agreement to talke upon the Act. I do find Sir G. Downing (41) to be a mighty talker, more than is true, which I now know to be so, and suspected it before, but for all that I have good grounds to think it will succeed for goods and in time for money too, but not presently. Having done with him, I to my Lord Bruncker's (46) house in Covent-Garden, and, among other things, it was to acquaint him with my paper of Pursers, and read it to him, and had his good liking of it. Shewed him Mr. Coventry's (38) sense of it, which he sent me last post much to my satisfaction.
Thence to the 'Change, and there hear to our grief how the plague is encreased this week from seventy to eighty-nine. We have also great fear of our Hambrough fleete, of their meeting the Dutch; as also have certain newes, that by storms Sir Jer. Smith's fleet is scattered, and three of them come without masts back to Plymouth, which is another very exceeding great disappointment, and if the victualling ships are miscarried will tend to the losse of the garrison of Tangier.
Thence home, in my way had the opportunity I longed for, of seeing and saluting Mrs. Stokes, my little goldsmith's wife in Paternoster Row, and there bespoke some thing, a silver chafing-dish for warming plates, and so home to dinner, found my wife busy about making her hangings for her chamber with the upholster.
So I to the office and anon to the Duke of Albemarle (57), by coach at night, taking, for saving time, Sir W. Warren with me, talking of our businesses all the way going and coming, and there got his reference of my pursers' paper to the Board to consider of it before he reads it, for he will never understand it I am sure. Here I saw Sir W. Coventry's (38) kind letter to him concerning my paper, and among others of his letters, which I saw all, and that is a strange thing, that whatever is writ to this Duke of Albemarle (57), all the world may see; for this very night he did give me Mr. Coventry's (38) letter to read, soon as it come to his hand, before he had read it himself, and bid me take out of it what concerned the Navy, and many things there was in it, which I should not have thought fit for him to have let any body so suddenly see; but, among other things, find him profess himself to the Duke a friend into the inquiring further into the business of Prizes, and advises that it may be publique, for the righting the King (35), and satisfying the people and getting the blame to be rightly laid where it should be, which strikes very hard upon my Lord Sandwich (40), and troubles me to read it. Besides, which vexes me more, I heard the damned Duchesse again say to twenty gentlemen publiquely in the room, that she would have Montagu sent once more to sea, before he goes his Embassy, that we may see whether he will make amends for his cowardice, and repeated the answer she did give the other day in my hearing to Sir G. Downing (41), wishing her Lord had been a coward, for then perhaps he might have been made an Embassador, and not been sent now to sea. But one good thing she said, she cried mightily out against the having of gentlemen Captains with feathers and ribbands, and wished the King (35) would send her husband to sea with the old plain sea Captains, that he served with formerly, that would make their ships swim with blood, though they could not make legs1 as Captains nowadays can. It grieved me to see how slightly the Duke do every thing in the world, and how the King (35) and every body suffers whatever he will to be done in the Navy, though never so much against reason, as in the business of recalling tickets, which will be done notwithstanding all the arguments against it. So back again to my office, and there to business and so to bed.
Note 1. Make bows, play the courtier. The reading, "make leagues", appeared in former editions till Mr. Mynors Bright corrected it.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 26 September 1666. 26 Sep 1666. Up, and with Sir J. Minnes (67) to St. James's, where every body going to the House, I away by coach to White Hall, and after a few turns, and hearing that our accounts come into the House but to-day, being hindered yesterday by other business, I away by coach home, taking up my wife and calling at Bennet's, our late mercer, who is come into Covent Garden to a fine house looking down upon the Exchange; and I perceive many Londoners every day come; and Mr. Pierce hath let his wife's closett, and the little blind bed chamber, and a garret to a silke man for £50 fine, and £30 per annum, and £40 per annum more for dieting the master and two prentices.
So home, not agreeing for silk for a petticoat for her which she desired, but home to dinner and then back to White Hall, leaving my wife by the way to buy her petticoat of Bennet, and I to White Hall waiting all day on the Duke of Yorke (32) to move the King (36) for getting Lanyon some money at Plymouth out of some oyle prizes brought in thither, but could get nothing done, but here Mr. Dugdale I hear the great loss of books in St. Paul's Church-yarde, and at their Hall also, which they value about £150,000; some booksellers being wholly undone, among others, they say, my poor Kirton. And Mr. Crumlu all his books and household stuff burned; they trusting St. Fayth's, and the roof of the church falling, broke the arch down into the lower church, and so all the goods burned. A very great loss. His father hath lost above £1000 in books; one book newly printed, a Discourse, it seems, of Courts. Here I had the hap to see my Lady Denham (26): and at night went into the dining-room and saw several fine ladies; among others, Castlemayne (25), but chiefly Denham (26) again; and the Duke of Yorke (32) taking her aside and talking to her in the sight of all the world, all alone; which was strange, and what also I did not like.
Here I met with good Mr. Evelyn (45), who cries out against it, and calls it bitchering1, for the Duke of Yorke (32) talks a little to her, and then she goes away, and then he follows her again like a dog. He observes that none of the nobility come out of the country at all to help the King (36), or comfort him, or prevent commotions at this fire; but do as if the King (36) were nobody; nor ne'er a priest comes to give the King (36) and Court good council, or to comfort the poor people that suffer; but all is dead, nothing of good in any of their minds: he bemoans it, and says he fears more ruin hangs over our heads.
Thence away by coach, and called away my wife at Unthanke's, where she tells me she hath bought a gowne of 15s. per yard; the same, before her face, my Baroness Castlemayne (25) this day bought also, which I seemed vexed for, though I do not grudge it her, but to incline her to have Mercer again, which I believe I shall do, but the girle, I hear, has no mind to come to us again, which vexes me.
Being come home, I to Sir W. Batten (65), and there hear our business was tendered to the House to-day, and a Committee of the whole House chosen to examine our accounts, and a great many Hotspurs enquiring into it, and likely to give us much trouble and blame, and perhaps (which I am afeard of) will find faults enow to demand better officers. This I truly fear. Away with Sir W. Pen (45), who was there, and he and I walked in the garden by moonlight, and he proposes his and my looking out into Scotland about timber, and to use Pett (56) there; for timber will be a good commodity this time of building the City; and I like the motion, and doubt not that we may do good in it. We did also discourse about our Privateer, and hope well of that also, without much hazard, as, if God blesses us, I hope we shall do pretty well toward getting a penny. I was mightily pleased with our discourse, and so parted, and to the office to finish my journall for three or four days, and so home to supper, and to bed. Our fleete abroad, and the Dutch too, for all we know; the weather very bad; and under the command of an unlucky man, I fear. God bless him, and the fleete under him!
Note 1. This word was apparently of Evelyn's own making.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 02 December 1666. 02 Dec 1666. Lord's Day. Up, and to church, and after church home to dinner, where I met Betty Michell and her husband, very merry at dinner, and after dinner, having borrowed Sir W. Pen's (45) coach, we to Westminster, they two and my wife and I to Mr. Martin's, where find the company almost all come to the christening of Mrs. Martin's child, a girl. A great deal of good plain company. After sitting long, till the church was done, the Parson comes, and then we to christen the child. I was Godfather, and Mrs. Holder (her husband, a good man, I know well), and a pretty lady, that waits, it seems, on my Lady Bath (53), at White Hall, her name, Mrs. Noble, were Godmothers. After the christening comes in the wine and the sweetmeats, and then to prate and tattle, and then very good company they were, and I among them. Here was old Mrs. Michell and Howlett, and several married women of the Hall, whom I knew mayds. Here was also Mrs. Burroughs and Mrs. Bales, the young widow, whom I led home, and having staid till the moon was up, I took my pretty gossip to White Hall with us, and I saw her in her lodging, and then my owne company again took coach, and no sooner in the coach but something broke, that we were fain there to stay till a smith could be fetched, which was above an hour, and then it costing me 6s. to mend.
Away round by the wall and Cow Lane1, for fear it should break again; and in pain about the coach all the way. But to ease myself therein Betty Michell did sit at the same end with me.... Being very much pleased with this, we at last come home, and so to supper, and then sent them by boat home, and we to bed. When I come home I went to Sir W. Batten's (65), and there I hear more ill newes still: that all our New England fleete, which went out lately, are put back a third time by foul weather, and dispersed, some to one port and some to another; and their convoys also to Plymouth; and whether any of them be lost or not, we do not know. This, added to all the rest, do lay us flat in our hopes and courages, every body prophesying destruction to the nation.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 07 January 1667. 07 Jan 1667. Lay long in bed. Then up and to the office, where busy all the morning.
At noon (my wife being gone to Westminster) I with my Lord Bruncker (47) by coach as far as the Temple, in the way he telling me that my Lady Denham (27) is at last dead. Some suspect her poisoned, but it will be best known when her body is opened, which will be to-day, she dying yesterday morning. The Duke of York (33) is troubled for her; but hath declared he will never have another public mistress again; which I shall be glad of, and would the King (36) would do the like.
He tells me how the Parliament is grown so jealous of the King's being unfayre to them in the business of the Bill for examining Accounts, Irish Bill, and the business of the Papists, that they will not pass the business for money till they see themselves secure that those Bills will pass; which they do observe the Court to keep off till all the Bills come together, that the King (36) may accept what he pleases, and what he pleases to reject, which will undo all our business and the Kingdom too. He tells me how Mr. Henry Howard (38), of Norfolke, hath given our Royal Society all his grandfather's (81) library: which noble gift they value at £1000; and gives them accommodation to meet in at his house, Arundell House, they being now disturbed at Gresham College.
Thence 'lighting at the Temple to the ordinary hard by and eat a bit of meat, and then by coach to fetch my wife from her brother's (27), and thence to the Duke's house, and saw "Macbeth", which, though I saw it lately, yet appears a most excellent play in all respects, but especially in divertisement, though it be a deep tragedy; which is a strange perfection in a tragedy, it being most proper here, and suitable.
So home, it being the last play now I am to see till a fortnight hence, I being from the last night entered into my vowes for the year coming on. Here I met with the good newes of Hogg's bringing in two prizes more to Plymouth, which if they prove but any part of them, I hope, at least, we shall be no losers by them.
So home from the office, to write over fair my vowes for this year, and then to supper, and to bed. In great peace of mind having now done it, and brought myself into order again and a resolution of keeping it, and having entered my journall to this night, so to bed, my eyes failing me with writing.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 13 February 1667. 13 Feb 1667. Up, and by water to White Hall, where to the Duke of York (33), and there did our usual business; but troubled to see that, at this time, after our declaring a debt to the Parliament of £900,000, and nothing paid since, but the debt increased, and now the fleete to set out; to hear that the King (36) hath ordered but £35,000 for the setting out of the fleete, out of the Poll Bill, to buy all provisions, when five times as much had been little enough to have done any thing to purpose. They have, indeed, ordered more for paying off of seamen and the Yards to some time, but not enough for that neither.
Another thing is, the acquainting the Duke of York (33) with the case of Mr. Lanyon, our agent at Plymouth, who has trusted us to £8000 out of purse; we are not in condition, after so many promises, to obtain him a farthing, nor though a message was carried by Sir G. Carteret (57) and Sir W. Coventry (39) to the Commissioners for Prizes, that he might have £3000 out of £20,000 worth of prizes to be shortly sold there, that he might buy at the candle and pay for the goods out of bills, and all would [not] do any thing, but that money must go all another way, while the King's service is undone, and those that trust him perish. These things grieve me to the heart.
The Prince (47), I hear, is every day better and better. So away by water home, stopping at Michell's, where Mrs. Martin was, and I there drank with them and whispered with Betty, who tells me all is well, but was prevented in something she would have said, her 'marido venant' just then, a news which did trouble me, and so drank and parted and home, and there took up my wife by coach, and to Mrs. Pierce's, there to take her up, and with them to Dr. Clerke's, by invitation, where we have not been a great while, nor had any mind to go now, but that the Dr., whom I love, would have us choose a day. Here was his wife, painted, and her sister Worshipp, a widow now and mighty pretty in her mourning. Here was also Mr. Pierce and Mr. Floyd, Secretary to the Lords Commissioners of Prizes, and Captain Cooke (51), to dinner, an ill and little mean one, with foul cloth and dishes, and everything poor. Discoursed most about plays and the Opera, where, among other vanities, Captain Cooke (51) had the arrogance to say that he was fain to direct Sir W. Davenant (61) in the breaking of his verses into such and such lengths, according as would be fit for musick, and how he used to swear at Davenant (61), and command him that way, when W. Davenant (61) would be angry, and find fault with this or that note—but a vain coxcomb I perceive he is, though he sings and composes so well. But what I wondered at, Dr. Clerke did say that Sir W. Davenant (61) is no good judge of a dramatick poem, finding fault with his choice of Henry the 5th, and others, for the stage, when I do think, and he confesses, "The Siege of Rhodes" as good as ever was writ.
After dinner Captain Cooke (51) and two of his boys to sing, but it was indeed both in performance and composition most plainly below what I heard last night, which I could not have believed. Besides overlooking the words which he sung, I find them not at all humoured as they ought to be, and as I believed he had done all he had sett. Though he himself do indeed sing in a manner as to voice and manner the best I ever heard yet, and a strange mastery he hath in making of extraordinary surprising closes, that are mighty pretty, but his bragging that he do understand tones and sounds as well as any man in the world, and better than Sir W. Davenant (61) or any body else, I do not like by no means, but was sick of it and of him for it. He gone, Dr. Clerke fell to reading a new play, newly writ, of a friend's of his; but, by his discourse and confession afterwards, it was his own. Some things, but very few, moderately good; but infinitely far from the conceit, wit, design, and language of very many plays that I know; so that, but for compliment, I was quite tired with hearing it. It being done, and commending the play, but against my judgment, only the prologue magnifying the happiness of our former poets when such sorry things did please the world as was then acted, was very good.
So set Mrs. Pierce at home, and away ourselves home, and there to my office, and then my chamber till my eyes were sore at writing and making ready my letter and accounts for the Commissioners of Tangier to-morrow, which being done, to bed, hearing that there was a very great disorder this day at the Ticket Office, to the beating and bruising of the face of Carcasse very much. A foul evening this was to-night, and I mightily troubled to get a coach home; and, which is now my common practice, going over the ruins in the night, I rid with my sword drawn in the coach.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 28 February 1667. 28 Feb 1667. Up, and there comes to me Drumbleby with a flageolet, made to suit with my former and brings me one Greeting, a master, to teach my wife. I agree by the whole with him to teach her to take out any lesson of herself for £4. She was not ready to begin to-day, but do to-morrow. So I to the office, where my Lord Bruncker (47) and I only all the morning, and did business.
At noon to the Exchange and to Sir Rob. Viner's (36) about settling my accounts there.
So back home and to dinner, where Mr. Holliard (58) dined with us, and pleasant company he is. I love his company, and he secures me against ever having the stone again. He gives it me, as his opinion, that the City will never be built again together, as is expected, while any restraint is laid upon them. He hath been a great loser, and would be a builder again, but, he says, he knows not what restrictions there will be, so as it is unsafe for him to begin.
He gone, I to the office, and there busy till night doing much business, then home and to my accounts, wherein, beyond expectation, I succeeded so well as to settle them very clear and plain, though by borrowing of monies this month to pay D. Gawden, and chopping and changing with my Tangier money, they were become somewhat intricate, and, blessed be God; upon the evening my accounts, I do appear £6800 creditor: This done, I to supper about 12 at night, and so to bed. The weather for three or four days being come to be exceeding cold again as any time this year. I did within these six days see smoke still remaining of the late fire in the City; and it is strange to think how, to this very day, I cannot sleep at night without great terrors of fire, and this very night I could not sleep till almost two in the morning through thoughts of fire.
Thus this month is ended with great content of mind to me, thriving in my estate, and the affairs in my offices going pretty well as to myself. This afternoon Mr. Gawden was with me and tells me more than I knew before—that he hath orders to get all the victuals he can to Plymouth, and the Western ports, and other outports, and some to Scotland, so that we do intend to keep but a flying fleete this year; which, it may be, may preserve us a year longer, but the end of it must be ruin. Sir J. Minnes (67) this night tells me, that he hears for certain, that ballads are made of us in Holland for begging of a peace; which I expected, but am vexed at. So ends this month, with nothing of weight upon my mind, but for my father and mother, who are both very ill, and have been so for some weeks: whom God help! but I do fear my poor father will hardly be ever thoroughly well again.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 17 March 1667. 17 Mar 1667. Lord's Day. Up betime with my wife, and by coach with Sir W. Pen (45) and Sir Thomas Allen (34) to White Hall, there my wife and I the first time that ever we went to my Lady Jemimah's chamber at Sir Edward Carteret's (47) lodgings. I confess I have been much to blame and much ashamed of our not visiting her sooner, but better now than never. Here we took her before she was up, which I was sorry for, so only saw her, and away to chapel, leaving further visit till after sermon. I put my wife into the pew below, but it was pretty to see, myself being but in a plain band, and every way else ordinary, how the verger took me for her man, I think, and I was fain to tell him she was a kinswoman of my Lord Sandwich's (41), he saying that none under knights-baronets' ladies are to go into that pew. So she being there, I to the Duke of York's (33) lodging, where in his dressing-chamber he talking of his journey to-morrow or next day to Harwich, to prepare some fortifications there; so that we are wholly upon the defensive part this year, only we have some expectations that we may by our squadrons annoy them in their trade by the North of Scotland and to the Westward. Here Sir W. Pen (45) did show the Duke of York (33) a letter of Hogg's about a prize he drove in within the Sound at Plymouth, where the Vice-Admiral claims her. Sir W. Pen (45) would have me speak to the latter, which I did, and I think without any offence, but afterwards I was sorry for it, and Sir W. Pen (45) did plainly say that he had no mind to speak to the Duke of York (33) about it, so that he put me upon it, but it shall be, the last time that I will do such another thing, though I think no manner of hurt done by it to me at all.
That done I to walk in the Parke, where to the Queene's Chapel, and there heard a fryer preach with his cord about his middle, in Portuguese, something I could understand, showing that God did respect the meek and humble, as well as the high and rich. He was full of action, but very decent and good, I thought, and his manner of delivery very good.
Then I went back to White Hall, and there up to the closet, and spoke with several people till sermon was ended, which was preached by the Bishop of Hereford (64), an old good man, that they say made an excellent sermon. He was by birth a Catholique, and a great gallant, having £1500 per annum, patrimony, and is a Knight Barronet; was turned from his persuasion by the late Archbishop Laud (93). He and the Bishop of Exeter, Dr. Ward (50), are the two Bishops that the King (36) do say he cannot have bad sermons from. Here I met with Sir H. Cholmly (34), who tells me, that undoubtedly my Lord Bellasses (52) do go no more to Tangier, and that he do believe he do stand in a likely way to go Governor; though he says, and showed me, a young silly Lord, one Lord Allington (27), who hath offered a great sum of money to go, and will put hard for it, he having a fine lady (22), and a great man would be glad to have him out of the way.
After Chapel I down and took out my wife from the pew, where she was talking with a lady whom I knew not till I was gone. It was Mrs. Ashfield of Brampton, who had with much civility been, it seems, at our house to see her. I am sorry I did not show her any more respect. With my wife to Sir G. Carteret's (57), where we dined and mightily made of, and most extraordinary people they are to continue friendship with for goodness, virtue, and nobleness and interest.
After dinner he and I alone awhile and did joy ourselves in my Lord Sandwich's (41) being out of the way all this time. He concurs that we are in a way of ruin by thus being forced to keep only small squadrons out, but do tell me that it was not choice, but only force, that we could not keep out the whole fleete. He tells me that the King (36) is very kind to my Lord Sandwich (41), and did himself observe to him (Sir G. Carteret (57)), how those very people, meaning the Prince (47) and Duke of Albemarle (58), are punished in the same kind as they did seek to abuse my Lord Sandwich (41).
Thence away, and got a Hackney coach and carried my wife home, and there only drank, and myself back again to my Lord Treasurer's (60), where the King (36), Duke of York (33), and Sir G. Carteret (57) and Lord Arlington (49) were and none else, so I staid not, but to White Hall, and there meeting nobody I would speak with, walked into the Park and took two or three turns all alone, and then took coach and home, where I find Mercer, who I was glad to see, but durst [not] shew so, my wife being displeased with her, and indeed I fear she is grown a very gossip. I to my chamber, and there fitted my arguments which I had promised Mr. Gawden in his behalf in some pretences to allowance of the King (36), and then to supper, and so to my chamber a little again, and then to bed. Duke of Buckingham (39) not heard of yet.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 03 April 1667. 03 Apr 1667. Up, and with Sir W. Batten (66) to White Hall to Sir W. Coventry's (39) chamber, and there did receive the Duke's (33) order for Balty's (27) receiving of the contingent money to be paymaster of it, and it pleases me the more for that it is but £1500, which will be but a little sum for to try his ability and honesty in the disposing of, and so I am the willinger to trust and pass my word for him therein.
By and by up to the Duke of York (33), where our usual business, and among other things I read two most dismal letters of the straits we are in (from Collonell Middleton and Commissioner Taylor) that ever were writ in the world, so as the Duke of York (33) would have them to shew the King (36), and to every demand of money, whereof we proposed many and very pressing ones, Sir G. Carteret (57) could make no answer but no money, which I confess made me almost ready to cry for sorrow and vexation, but that which was the most considerable was when Sir G. Carteret (57) did say that he had no funds to raise money on; and being asked by Sir W. Coventry (39) whether the eleven months' tax was not a fund, and he answered, "No, that the bankers would not lend money upon it". Then Sir W. Coventry (39) burst out and said he did supplicate his Royal Highness, and would do the same to the King (36), that he would remember who they were that did persuade the King (36) from parting with the Chimney-money to the Parliament, and taking that in lieu which they would certainly have given, and which would have raised infallibly ready money; meaning the bankers and the farmers of the Chimney-money, whereof Sir, G. Carteret, I think, is one; saying plainly, that whoever did advise the King (36) to that, did, as much as in them lay, cut the King's throat, and did wholly betray him; to which the Duke of York (33) did assent; and remembered that the King (36) did say again and again at the time, that he was assured, and did fully believe, the money would be raised presently upon a land-tax. This put as all into a stound; and Sir W. Coventry (39) went on to declare, that he was glad he was come to have so lately concern in the Navy as he hath, for he cannot now give any good account of the Navy business; and that all his work now was to be able to provide such orders as would justify his Royal Highness in the business, when it shall be called to account; and that he do do, not concerning himself whether they are or can be performed, or no; and that when it comes to be examined, and falls on my Lord Treasurer (60), he cannot help it, whatever the issue of it shall be. Hereupon Sir W. Batten (66) did pray him to keep also by him all our letters that come from the office that may justify us, which he says he do do, and, God knows, it is an ill sign when we are once to come to study how to excuse ourselves. It is a sad consideration, and therewith we broke up, all in a sad posture, the most that ever I saw in my life. One thing more Sir W. Coventry (39) did say to the Duke of York (33), when I moved again, that of about £9000 debt to Lanyon, at Plymouth, he might pay £3700 worth of prize-goods, that he bought lately at the candle, out of this debt due to him from the King (36); and the Duke of York (33), and Sir G: Carteret, and Lord Barkeley (65), saying, all of them, that my Lord Ashly (45) would not be got to yield to it, who is Treasurer of the Prizes, Sir W. Coventry (39) did plainly desire that it might be declared whether the proceeds of the prizes were to go to the helping on of the war, or no; and, if it were, how then could this be denied? which put them all into another stound; and it is true, God forgive us! Thence to the chappell, and there, by chance, hear that Dr. Crew is to preach; and so into the organ-loft, where I met Mr. Carteret, and my Lady Jemimah, and Sir Thomas Crew's (43) two daughters, and Dr. Childe (61) played; and Dr. Crew did make a very pretty, neat, sober, honest sermon; and delivered it very readily, decently, and gravely, beyond his years: so as I was exceedingly taken with it, and I believe the whole chappell, he being but young; but his manner of his delivery I do like exceedingly. His text was, "But seeke ye first the Kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you". Thence with my Lady to Sir G. Carteret's (57) lodgings, and so up into the house, and there do hear that the Dutch letters are come, and say that the Dutch have ordered a passe to be sent for our Commissioners, and that it is now upon the way, coming with a trumpeter blinded, as is usual. But I perceive every body begins to doubt the success of the treaty, all their hopes being only that if it can be had on any terms, the Chancellor (58) will have it; for he dare not come before a Parliament, nor a great many more of the courtiers, and the King (36) himself do declare he do not desire it, nor intend it but on a strait; which God defend him from! Here I hear how the King (36) is not so well pleased of this marriage between the Duke of Richmond and Mrs. Stewart (19), as is talked; and that he [the Duke] by a wile did fetch her to the Beare, at the bridge foot, where a coach was ready, and they are stole away into Kent, without the King's leave; and that the King (36) hath said he will never see her more; but people do think that it is only a trick. This day I saw Prince Rupert (47) abroad in the Vane-room, pretty well as he used to be, and looks as well, only something appears to be under his periwigg on the crown of his head.
So home by water, and there find my wife gone abroad to her tailor's, and I dined alone with W. Hewer (25), and then to the office to draw up a memorial for the Duke of York (33) this afternoon at the Council about Lanyon's business.
By and by we met by appointment at the office upon a reference to Carcasses business to us again from the Duke of York (33), but a very confident cunning rogue we have found him at length. He carried himself very uncivilly to Sir W. Batten (66) this afternoon, as heretofore, and his silly Lord [Bruncker] pleaded for him, but all will not nor shall not do for ought he shall give, though I love the man as a man of great parts and ability.
Thence to White Hall by water (only asking Betty Michell by the way how she did), and there come too late to do any thing at the Council. So by coach to my periwigg maker's and tailor's, and so home, where I find my wife with her flageolet master, which I wish she would practise, and so to the office, and then to Sir W. Batten's (66), and then to Sir W. Pen's (45), talking and spending time in vain a little while, and then home up to my chamber, and so to supper and to bed, vexed at two or three things, viz. that my wife's watch proves so bad as it do; the ill state of the office; and Kingdom's business; at the charge which my mother's death for mourning will bring me when all paid.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 04 April 1667. 04 Apr 1667. Up, and going down found Jervas the barber with a periwigg which I had the other day cheapened at Westminster, but it being full of nits, as heretofore his work used to be, I did now refuse it, having bought elsewhere.
So to the office till noon, busy, and then (which I think I have not done three times in my life) left the board upon occasion of a letter of Sir W. Coventry (39), and meeting Balty (27) at my house I took him with me by water, and to the Duke of Albemarle (58) to give him an account of the business, which was the escaping of some soldiers for the manning of a few ships now going out with Harman (42) to the West Indies, which is a sad consideration that at the very beginning of the year and few ships abroad we should be in such want of men that they do hide themselves, and swear they will not go to be killed and have no pay. I find the Duke of Albemarle (58) at dinner with sorry company, some of his officers of the Army; dirty dishes, and a nasty wife at table, and bad meat, of which I made but an ill dinner. Pretty to hear how she talked against Captain Du Tell, the Frenchman, that the Prince and her husband put out the last year; and how, says she, the Duke of York (33) hath made him, for his good services, his Cupbearer; yet he fired more shot into the D. Gawden's ship, and others of the King's ships, than of the enemy. And the Duke of Albemarle (58) did confirm it, and that somebody in the fight did cry out that a little Dutchman, by his ship, did plague him more than any other; upon which they were going to order him to be sunk, when they looked and found it was Du Tell, who, as the Duke of Albemarle (58) says, had killed several men in several of our ships. He said, but for his interest, which he knew he had at Court, he had hanged him at the yard's-arm, without staying for a Court-martiall. One Colonel Howard, at the table, magnified the Duke of Albemarle's (58) fight in June last, as being a greater action than ever was done by Caesar. The Duke of Albemarle (58), did say it had been no great action, had all his number fought, as they should have done, to have beat the Dutch; but of his 55 ships, not above 25 fought. He did give an account that it was a fight he was forced to: the Dutch being come in his way, and he being ordered to the buoy of the Nore, he could not pass by them without fighting, nor avoid them without great disadvantage and dishonour; and this Sir G. Carteret (57), I afterwards giving him an account of what he said, says that it is true, that he was ordered up to the Nore. But I remember he said, had all his captains fought, he would no more have doubted to have beat the Dutch, with all their number, than to eat the apple that lay on his trencher. My Lady Duchesse, among other things, discoursed of the wisdom of dividing the fleete; which the General said nothing to, though he knows well that it come from themselves in the fleete, and was brought up hither by Sir Edward Spragge (47). Colonel Howard, asking how the Prince did, the Duke of Albemarle (58) answering, "Pretty well"; the other replied, "But not so well as to go to sea again".—"How!" says the Duchess, "what should he go for, if he were well, for there are no ships for him to command? And so you have brought your hogs to a fair market", said she1. One at the table told an odd passage in this late plague: that at Petersfield, I think, he said, one side of the street had every house almost infected through the town, and the other, not one shut up. Dinner being done, I brought Balty (27) to the Duke of Albemarle (58) to kiss his hand and thank him far his kindness the last year to him, and take leave of him, and then Balty (27) and I to walk in the Park, and, out of pity to his father, told him what I had in my thoughts to do for him about the money—that is, to make him Deputy Treasurer of the fleete, which I have done by getting Sir G. Carteret's (57) consent, and an order from the Duke of York (33) for £1500 to be paid to him. He promises the whole profit to be paid to my wife, for to be disposed of as she sees fit, for her father and mother's relief. So mightily pleased with our walk, it being mighty pleasant weather, I back to Sir G. Carteret's (57), and there he had newly dined, and talked, and find that he do give every thing over for lost, declaring no money to be raised, and let Sir W. Coventry (39) name the man that persuaded the King (36) to take the Land Tax on promise, of raising present money upon it. He will, he says, be able to clear himself enough of it. I made him merry, with telling him how many land-admirals we are to have this year: Allen at Plymouth, Holmes at Portsmouth, Spragge for Medway, Teddiman at Dover, Smith to the Northward, and Harman (42) to the Southward. He did defend to me Sir W. Coventry (39) as not guilty of the dividing of the fleete the last year, and blesses God, as I do, for my Lord Sandwich's (41) absence, and tells me how the King (36) did lately observe to him how they have been particularly punished that were enemies to my Lord Sandwich (41). Mightily pleased I am with his family, and my Baroness Carteret (65) was on the bed to-day, having been let blood, and tells me of my Lady Jemimah's being big-bellied.
Thence with him to my Lord Treasurer's (60), and there walked during Council sitting with Sir Stephen Fox (40), talking of the sad condition of the King's purse, and affairs thereby; and how sad the King's life must be, to pass by his officers every hour, that are four years behind-hand unpaid. My Lord Barkeley (65) [of Stratton] I met with there, and fell into talk with him on the same thing, wishing to God that it might be remedied, to which he answered, with an oath, that it was as easy to remedy it as anything in the world; saying, that there is himself and three more would venture their carcasses upon it to pay all the King's debts in three years, had they the managing his revenue, and putting £300,000 in his purse, as a stock. But, Lord! what a thing is this to me, that do know how likely a man my Lord Barkeley (65) of all the world is, to do such a thing as this. Here I spoke with Sir W. Coventry (39), who tells me plainly that to all future complaints of lack of money he will answer but with the shrug of his shoulder; which methought did come to my heart, to see him to begin to abandon the King's affairs, and let them sink or swim, so he do his owne part, which I confess I believe he do beyond any officer the King (36) hath, but unless he do endeavour to make others do theirs, nothing will be done. The consideration here do make me go away very sad, and so home by coach, and there took up my wife and Mercer, who had been to-day at White Hall to the Maundy2, it being Maundy Thursday; but the King (36) did not wash the poor people's feet himself, but the Bishop of London did it for him, but I did not see it, and with them took up Mrs. Anne Jones at her mother's door, and so to take the ayre to Hackney, where good neat's tongue, and things to eat and drink, and very merry, the weather being mighty pleasant; and here I was told that at their church they have a fair pair of organs, which play while the people sing, which I am mighty glad of, wishing the like at our church at London, and would give £50 towards it. So very pleasant, and hugging of Mercer in our going home, we home, and then to the office to do a little business, and so to supper at home and to bed.
Note 1. It was pretty to hear the Duke of Albemarle (58) himself to wish that they would come on our ground, meaning the French, for that he would pay them, so as to make them glad to go back to France again; which was like a general, but not like an admiral.
Note 2. The practice of giving alms on Maundy Thursday to poor men and women equal in number to the years of the sovereign's age is a curious survival in an altered form of an old custom. The original custom was for the King (36) to wash the feet of twelve poor persons, and to give them a supper in imitation of Christ's last supper and his washing of the Apostles' feet. James II was the last sovereign to perform the ceremony in person, but it was performed by deputy so late as 1731. The Archbishop of York was the King's deputy on that occasion. The institution has passed through the various stages of feet washing with a supper, the discontinuance of the feet washing, the substitution of a gift of provisions for the supper, and finally the substitution of a gift of money for the provisions. The ceremony took place at the Chapel Royal, Whitehall; but it is now held at Westminster Abbey. Maundy is derived from the Latin word 'maudatum', which commences the original anthem sung during the ceremony, in reference to Christ's command.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 19 July 1667. 19 Jul 1667. Up and comes the flageolet master, and brings me two new great Ivory pipes which cost me 32s., and so to play, and he being done, and Balty's (27) wife taking her leave of me, she going back to Lee to-day, I to Westminster and there did receive £15,000 orders out of the Exchequer in part of a bigger sum upon the eleven months tax for Tangier, part of which I presently delivered to Sir H. Cholmly (34), who was there, and thence with Mr. Gawden to Auditor Woods and Beales to examine some precedents in his business of the Victualling on his behalf, and so home, and in my way by coach down Marke Lane, mightily pleased and smitten to see, as I thought, in passing, the pretty woman, the line-maker's wife that lived in Fenchurch Streete, and I had great mind to have gone back to have seen, but yet would correct my nature and would not.
So to dinner with my wife, and then to sing, and so to the office, where busy all the afternoon late, and to Sir W. Batten's (66) and to Sir R. Ford's (53), we all to consider about our great prize at Hull, being troubled at our being likely to be troubled with Prince Rupert (47), by reason of Hogg's consorting himself with two privateers of the D. Gawden's, and so we study how to ease or secure ourselves.
So to walk in the garden with my wife, and then to supper and to bed. One tells me that, by letter from Holland, the people there are made to believe that our condition in England is such as they may have whatever they will ask; and that so they are mighty high, and despise us, or a peace with us; and there is too much reason for them to do so. The Dutch fleete are in great squadrons everywhere still about Harwich, and were lately at Portsmouth; and the last letters say at Plymouth, and now gone to Dartmouth to destroy our Streights' fleete lately got in thither; but God knows whether they can do it any hurt, or no, but it was pretty news come the other day so fast, of the Dutch fleets being in so many places, that Sir W. Batten (66) at table cried, "By God", says he, "I think the Devil shits Dutchmen".
Diary of Samuel Pepys 16 September 1667. 16 Sep 1667. Up, and several come to me, among others Mr. Yeabsly of Plymouth, to discourse about their matters touching Tangier, and by and by Sir H. Cholmly (35), who was with me a good while; who tells me that the Duke of York's (33) child is christened, the Duke of Albemarle (58) and the Marquis of Worcester (38) godfathers, and my Lady Suffolke (45) godmother; and they have named it Edgar, which is a brave name. But it seems they are more joyful in the Chancellor's (58) family, at the birth of this Prince, than in wisdom they should, for fear it should give the King (37) cause of jealousy.
Sir H. Cholmly (35) do not seem to think there is any such thing can be in the King's intention as that of raising the Duke of Monmouth (18) to the Crowne, though he thinks there may possibly be some persons that would, and others that would be glad to have the Queen (28) removed to some monastery, or somewhere or other, to make room for a new wife; for they will all be unsafe under the Duke of York (33). He says the King (37) and Parliament will agree; that is, that the King (37) will do any thing that they will have him. We together to the Exchequer about our Tangier orders, and so parted at the New Exchange, where I staid reading Mrs. Phillips's poems till my wife and Mercer called me to Mrs. Pierce's, by invitation to dinner, where I find her painted, which makes me loathe her, and the nastiest poor dinner that made me sick, only here I met with a Fourth Advice to the Painter upon the coming in of the Dutch to the River and end of the war, that made my heart ake to read, it being too sharp, and so true. Here I also saw a printed account of the examinations taken, touching the burning of the City of London, shewing the plot of the Papists therein; which, it seems, hath been ordered and to have been burnt by the hands of the hangman, in Westminster Palace. I will try to get one of them.
After dinner she showed us her closet, which is pretty, with her James's picture done by Hales, but with a mighty bad hand, which is his great fault that he do do negligently, and the drapery also not very good. Being tired of being here, and sick of their damned sluttish dinner, my wife and Mercer and I away to the King's play-house, to see the "Scornfull Lady"; but it being now three o'clock there was not one soul in the pit; whereupon, for shame, we would not go in, but, against our wills, went all to see "Tu Quoque" again, where there is a pretty store of company, and going with a prejudice the play appeared better to us. Here we saw Madam Morland, who is grown mighty fat, but is very comely. But one of the best arts of our sport was a mighty pretty lady that sat behind, that did laugh so heartily and constantly, that it did me good to hear her.
Thence to the King's house, upon a wager of mine with my wife, that there would be no acting there today, there being no company: so I went in and found a pretty good company there, and saw their dance at the end of he play, and so to the coach again, and to the Cock ale house, and there drank in our coach, and so home, and my wife read to me as last night, and so to bed vexed with our dinner to-day, and myself more with being convinced that Mrs. Pierce paints, so that henceforth to be sure I shall loathe her.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 03 December 1667. 03 Dec 1667. Up, by candlelight, the only time I think I have done so this winter, and a coach being got over night, I to Sir W. Coventry's (39), the first time I have seen him at his new house since he come to lodge there. He tells me of the vote for none of the House to be of the Commission for the Bill of Accounts; which he thinks is so great a disappointment to Birch (52) and others that expected to be of it, that he thinks, could it have been [fore]seen, there would not have been any Bill at all. We hope it will be the better for all that are to account; it being likely that the men, being few, and not of the House, will hear reason. The main business I went about was about. Gilsthrop, Sir W. Batten's (66) clerk; who, being upon his death-bed, and now dead, hath offered to make discoveries of the disorders of the Navy and of £65,000 damage to the King (37): which made mighty noise in the Commons' House; and members appointed to go to him, which they did; but nothing to the purpose got from him, but complaints of false musters, and ships being refitted with victuals and stores at Plymouth, after they come fitted from other ports; but all this to no purpose, nor more than we know, and will owne. But the best is, that this loggerhead should say this, that understands nothing of the Navy, nor ever would; and hath particularly blemished his master by name among us. I told Sir W. Coventry (39) of my letter to Sir R. Brookes (30), and his answer to me. He advises me, in what I write to him, to be as short as I can, and obscure, saving in things fully plain; for all that he do is to make mischief; and that the greatest wisdom in dealing with the Parliament in the world is to say little, and let them get out what they can by force: which I shall observe. He declared to me much of his mind to be ruled by his own measures, and not to go so far as many would have him to the ruin of my Chancellor (58), and for which they do endeavour to do what they can against Sir W. Coventry (39). "But", says he, "I have done my do in helping to get him out of the administration of things, for which he is not fit; but for his life or estate I will have nothing to say to it: besides that, my duty to my master the Duke of York (34) is such, that I will perish before I will do any thing to displease or disoblige him, where the very necessity of the Kingdom do not in my judgment call me". Thence I home and to the office, where my Lord Anglesey (53), and all the discourse was yesterday's vote in the Commons, wherein he told us that, should the Lords yield to what the Commons would have in this matter, it were to make them worse than any justice of Peace (whereas they are the highest Court in the Kingdom) that they cannot be judges whether an offender be to be committed or bailed, which every justice of Peace do do, and then he showed me precedents plain in their defence.
By and by to Sir W. Pen's (46), where Sir R. Ford (53) and he and I met, with Mr. Young and Lewes, about our accounts with my Lady Batten, which prove troublesome, and I doubt will prove to our loss. But here I hear the whole that my Chancellor (58) is gone, and left a paper behind him for the House of Lords, telling them the reason of him retiring, complaining of a design for his ruin. But the paper I must get: only the thing at present is great, and will put the King (37) and Commons to some new counsels certainly.
So home to supper and to bed. Sir W. Pen (46) I find in much trouble this evening, having been called to the Committee this afternoon, about the business of prizes. Sir Richard Ford (53) told us this evening an odd story of the basenesse of the late Lord Mayor, Sir W. Bolton, in cheating the poor of the City, out of the collections made for the people that were burned, of £1800; of which he can give no account, and in which he hath forsworn himself plainly, so as the Court of Aldermen have sequestered him from their Court till he do bring in an account, which is the greatest piece of roguery that they say was ever found in a Lord Mayor. He says also that this day hath been made appear to them that the Keeper of Newgate, at this day, hath made his house the only nursery of rogues, and whores, and pickpockets, and thieves in the world; where they were bred and entertained, and the whole society met: and that, for the sake of the Sheriffes, they durst not this day committ him, for fear of making him let out the prisoners, but are fain to go by artifice to deal with him. He tells me, also, speaking of the new street that is to be made from Guild Hall down to Cheapside, that the ground is already, most of it, bought. And tells me of one particular, of a man that hath a piece of ground lieing in the very middle of the street that must be; which, when the street is cut out of it, there will remain ground enough, of each side, to build a house to front the street. He demanded £700 for the ground, and to be excused paying any thing for the melioration of the rest of his ground that he was to keep. The Court consented to give him £700, only not to abate him the consideration: which the man denied; but told them, and so they agreed, that he would excuse the City the £700, that he might have the benefit of the melioration without paying any thing for it. So much some will get by having the City burned! But he told me that in other cases ground, by this means, that was not 4d. a-foot before, will now, when houses are built, be worth 15s. a-foot. But he tells me that the common standard now reckoned on between man and man, in places where there is no alteration of circumstances, but only the houses burnt, there the ground, which, with a house on it, did yield £100 a-year, is now reputed worth £33 6s. 8d.; and that this is the common market-price between one man and another, made upon a good and moderate medium.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 19 February 1668. 19 Feb 1668. Up, and to the office, where all the morning drawing up an answer to the Report of the Committee for miscarriages to the Parliament touching our paying men by tickets, which I did do in a very good manner I think. Dined with my clerks at home, where much good discourse of our business of the Navy, and the trouble now upon us, more than we expected.
After dinner my wife out with Deb., to buy some things against my sister's wedding, and I to the office to write fair my business I did in the morning, and in the evening to White Hall, where I find Sir W. Coventry (40) all alone, a great while with the Duke of York (34), in the King's drawing-room, they two talking together all alone, which did mightily please me. Then I did get Sir W. Coventry (40) (the Duke of York (34) being gone) aside, and there read over my paper, which he liked and corrected, and tells me it will be hard to escape, though the thing be never so fair, to have it voted a miscarriage; but did advise me and my Lord Brouncker (48), who coming by did join with us, to prepare some members in it, which we shall do. Here I do hear how La Roche (47), a French captain, who was once prisoner here, being with his ship at Plymouth, hath played some freakes there, for which his men being beat out of the town, he hath put up his flag of defiance, and also, somewhere thereabout, did land with his men, and go a mile into the country, and did some pranks, which sounds pretty odd, to our disgrace, but we are in condition now to bear any thing. But, blessed be God! all the Court is full of the good news of my Lord Sandwich's (42) having made a peace between Spain and Portugall, which is mighty great news, and, above all, to my Lord's honour, more than any thing he ever did; and yet I do fear it will not prevail to secure him in Parliament against incivilities there.
Thence, took up my wife at Unthanke's, and so home, and there my mind being full of preparing my paper against to-morrow for the House, with an address from the office to the House, I to the office, very late, and then home to supper and to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 30 November 1668. 30 Nov 1668. Up betimes, and with W. Hewer (26), who is my guard, to White Hall, to a Committee of Tangier, where the business of Mr. Lanyon1 took up all the morning; and where, poor man! he did manage his business with so much folly, and ill fortune to boot, that the Board, before his coming in, inclining, of their own accord, to lay his cause aside, and leave it to the law, but he pressed that we would hear it, and it ended to the making him appear a very knave, as well as it did to me a fool also, which I was sorry for.
Thence by water, Mr. Povy (54), Creed, and I, to Arundel House, and there I did see them choosing their Council, it being St. Andrew's-day; and I had his Cross2 set on my hat, as the rest had, and cost me 2s., and so leaving them I away by coach home to dinner, and my wife, after dinner, went the first time abroad to take the maidenhead of her coach, calling on Roger Pepys (51), and visiting Mrs. Creed, and my cozen Turner, while I at home all the afternoon and evening, very busy and doing much work, to my great content.
Home at night, and there comes Mrs. Turner (45) and Betty to see us, and supped with us, and I shewed them a cold civility for fear of troubling my wife, and after supper, they being gone, we to bed. Thus ended this month, with very good content, that hath been the most sad to my heart and the most expenseful to my purse on things of pleasure, having furnished my wife's closet and the best chamber, and a coach and horses, that ever I yet knew in the world: and do put me into the greatest condition of outward state that ever I was in, or hoped ever to be, or desired: and this at a time when we do daily expect great changes in this Office: and by all reports we must, all of us, turn out. But my eyes are come to that condition that I am not able to work: and therefore that, and my wife's desire, make me have no manner of trouble in my thoughts about it. So God do his will in it!
Note 1. John Lanyon, agent of the Navy Commissioners at Plymouth. The cause of complaint appears to have been connected with his contract for Tangier. In 1668 a charge was made against Lanyon and Thomas Yeabsley that they had defrauded the King (38) in the freighting of the ship "Tiger" ("Calendar of State Papers", 1668-69, p. 138).
Note 2. The cross of St. Andrew, like that of St. Patrick, is a saltire. The two, combined with the red cross of St. George, form the Union flag.
1675. Hendrick Danckerts Painter 1625-1680 (50). View of Plymouth.
John Evelyn's Diary 02 December 1688. 02 Dec 1688. Dr. Tenison (52) preached at St. Martin's on Psalm xxxvi. 5, 6, 7, concerning Providence. I received the blessed Sacrament. Afterward, visited my Lord Godolphin (43), then going with the Marquis of Halifax (55) and Earl of Nottingham (41) as Commissioners to the Prince of Orange (38); he told me they had little power. Plymouth declared for the Prince (38). Bath, York, Hull, Bristol, and all the eminent nobility and persons of quality through England, declare for the Protestant religion and laws, and go to meet the Prince (38), who every day sets forth new Declarations against the Papists. The great favorites at Court, Priests and Jesuits, fly or abscond. Everything, till now concealed, flies abroad in public print, and is cried about the streets. Expectation of the Prince (38) coming to Oxford. The Prince of Wales and great treasure sent privily to Portsmouth, the Earl of Dover (52) being Governor. Address from the Fleet not grateful to his Majesty (55). The Papists in offices lay down their commissions, and fly. Universal consternation among them; it looks like a revolution.
John Evelyn's Diary 03 August 1690. 03 Aug 1690. The French landed some soldiers at Teignmouth, in Devon, and burned some poor houses. The French fleet still hovering about the western coast, and we having 300 sail of rich merchant-ships in the bay of Plymouth, our fleet began to move toward them, under three admirals. The country in the west all on their guard. A very extraordinary fine season; but on the 12th was a very great storm of thunder and lightning, and on the 15th the season much changed to wet and cold. The militia and trained bands, horse and foot, which were up through England, were dismissed. The French King having news that King William (39) was slain, and his army defeated in Ireland, caused such a triumph at Paris, and all over France, as was never heard of; when, in the midst of it, the unhappy King James (56) being vanquished, by a speedy flight and escape, himself brought the news of his own defeat.
Aug 1702. The Aug 1702 West Indies Action was a naval engagement between the English West-Indies Fleet commanded by Vice Admiral John Benbow 1653-1702 (49) and the French Fleet commanded by Admiral Jean du Casse 1646-1715 (55). The action lasted five days during with the English eventually being beaten off and Vice Admiral John Benbow 1653-1702 (49) being mortally wounded. The action was notable for a number of English ships refusing to engage with the French. Following the action the English Fleet returned to Port Royal where a number of captains were court-martialed for cowardice and disobedience. Found guilty Captains Richard Kirkby and Copper Wade were returned to Plymouth where they were shot aboard Bristol in the presence of other officers. Captain Constable was cleared of the charge of cowardice, but was convicted on other charges and cashiered. Captain Hudson died before he could be tried. Captains Fogg and Vincent were charged with having signed a paper with the other captains of the squadron, stating they would not fight, but they represented this as a device to keep Captain Kirkby from deserting; Benbow testifying in their favour, they were merely suspended.
Benbow's (49) leg was amputated; but a fever developed. On 04 Nov 1702 he died.
In 1710 Anne Stucley 1710-1731 was born in Plymouth.
On 31 Oct 1723 Pattee Byng 2nd Viscount Torrington 1699-1747 (24) was elected MP Plymouth.
In 1728 Robert Byng 1703-1740 (25) was elected MP Plymouth.
On 22 Oct 1746 James Northcote Painter 1746-1831 was born to Samuel Northcote Watchmaker in Plymouth.
In 1778 George Legge 3rd Earl Dartmouth 1755-1810 (22) was elected MP Plymouth.
On 29 Aug 1798 Edward Granville Eliot 3rd Earl St Germans 1798-1877 was born to William Eliot 2nd Earl St Germans 1767-1845 (31) and Georgiana Augusta Leveson-Gower 1769-1806 (29) at Plymouth.
On 22 Mar 1889 Arthur E Hugh Popham 1889-1970 was born at Plymouth.
Mount Edgecombe, Plymouth, Devon
Plymouth Sound, Devon
Drake's Island Plymouth Sound, Devon
Plymton Plymouth, Devon
St Andrew's Church Plymouth, Devon