History of Rotherhithe

1665 Great Plague of London

1666 Holme's Bonfire

1666 Poll Bill

Rotherhithe is in Peckham.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 09 October 1660. 09 Oct 1660. This morning Sir W. Batten (59) with Colonel Birch (45) to Deptford, to pay off two ships. Sir W. Pen (39) and I staid to do business, and afterwards together to White Hall, where I went to my Lord, and found him in bed not well, and saw in his chamber his picture2, very well done; and am with child1 till I get it copied out, which I hope to do when he is gone to sea.
To Whitehall again, where at Mr. Coventry's (32) chamber I met with Sir W. Pen (39) again, and so with him to Redriffe by water, and from thence walked over the fields to Deptford (the first pleasant walk I have had a great while), and in our way had a great deal of merry discourse, and find him to be a merry fellow and pretty good natured, and sings very bawdy songs. So we came and found our gentlemen and Mr. Prin (60) at the pay. About noon we dined together, and were very merry at table telling of tales. After dinner to the pay of another ship till 10 at night, and so home in our barge, a clear moonshine night, and it was 12 o'clock before we got home, where I found my wife in bed, and part of our chambers hung to-day by the upholster, but not being well done I was fretted, and so in a discontent to bed.
I found Mr. Prin (60) a good, honest, plain man, but in his discourse not very free or pleasant. Among all the tales that passed among us to-day, he told us of one Damford, that, being a black man, did scald his beard with mince-pie, and it came up again all white in that place, and continued to his dying day. Sir W. Pen (39) told us a good jest about some gentlemen blinding of the drawer, and who he catched was to pay the reckoning, and so they got away, and the master of the house coming up to see what his man did, his man got hold of him, thinking it to be one of the gentlemen, and told him that he was to pay the reckoning.
Note 1. A figurative expression for an eager longing desire, used by Udall and by Spenser. The latest authority given by Dr. Murray in the "New English Dictionary", is Bailey in 1725.
Note 2. Peter Lely Painter 1618-1680 (42). Portrait of Edward Montagu 1st Earl Sandwich 1625-1672 (35) in his Garter Robes and Garter Collar.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 12 January 1661. 12 Jan 1661. With Colonel Slingsby (50) and a friend of his, Major Waters (a deaf and most amorous melancholy gentleman, who is under a despayr in love, as the Colonel told me, which makes him bad company, though a most good-natured man), by water to Redriffe, and so on foot to Deptford (our servants by water), where we fell to choosing four captains to command the guards, and choosing the places where to keep them, and other things in order thereunto. We dined at the Globe, having our messenger with us to take care for us. Never till now did I see the great authority of my place, all the captains of the fleet coming cap in hand to us. Having staid very late there talking with the Colonel, I went home with Mr. Davis, storekeeper (whose wife is ill and so I could not see her), and was there most prince-like lodged, with so much respect and honour that I was at a loss how to behave myself.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 28 February 1661. 28 Feb 1661. Early to wait on my Lord, and after a little talk with him I took boat at Whitehall for Redriffe, but in my way overtook Captain Cuttance and Teddiman in a boat and so ashore with them at Queenhithe, and so to a tavern with them to a barrel of oysters, and so away.
Capt. Cuttance and I walked from Redriffe to Deptford, where I found both Sir Williams and Sir G. Carteret (51) at Mr. Uthwayt's, and there we dined, and notwithstanding my resolution, yet for want of other victualls, I did eat flesh this Lent, but am resolved to eat as little as I can. After dinner we went to Captain Bodilaw's, and there made sale of many old stores by the candle, and good sport it was to see how from a small matter bid at first they would come to double and treble the price of things. After that Sir W. Pen (39) and I and my Lady Batten and her daughter by land to Redriffe, staying a little at halfway house, and when we came to take boat, found Sir George, &c., to have staid with the barge a great while for us, which troubled us.
Home and to bed. This month ends with two great secrets under dispute but yet known to very few: first, Who the King will marry; and What the meaning of this fleet is which we are now sheathing to set out for the southward. Most think against Algier against the Turk, or to the East Indys against the Dutch who, we hear, are setting out a great fleet thither.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 June 1661. 01 Jun 1661. Having taken our leaves of Sir W. Batten (60) and my Lady, who are gone this morning to keep their Whitsuntide, Sir W. Pen (40) and I and Mr. Gauden by water to Woolwich, and there went from ship to ship to give order for and take notice of their forwardness to go forth, and then to Deptford and did the like, having dined at Woolwich with Captain Poole at the tavern there.
From Deptford we walked to Redriffe, calling at the half-way house, and there come into a room where there was infinite of new cakes placed that are made against Whitsuntide, and there we were very merry. By water home, and there did businesses of the office. Among others got my Lord's imprest of £1000 and Mr. Creed's of £10,000 against this voyage their bills signed. Having wrote letters into the country and read some things I went to bed.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 27 June 1662. 27 Jun 1662. Up early, not quite rid of my pain. I took more physique, and so made myself ready to go forth.
So to my Lord, who rose as soon as he heard I was there; and in his nightgown and shirt stood talking with me alone two hours, I believe, concerning his greatest matters of state and interest. Among other things, that his greatest design is, first, to get clear of all debts to the King (32) for the Embassy money, and then a pardon. Then, to get his land settled; and then to, discourse and advise what is best for him, whether to keep his sea employment longer or no. For he do discern that the Duke would be willing to have him out, and that by Coventry's means. And here he told me, how the terms at Argier were wholly his; and that he did plainly tell Lawson (47) and agree with him, that he would have the honour of them, if they should ever be agreed to; and that accordingly they did come over hither entitled, "Articles concluded on by Sir J. Lawson (47), according to instructions received from His Royal Highness James Duke of York (28), &c., and from His Excellency the Earle of Sandwich". (Which however was more than needed; but Lawson tells my Lord in his letter, that it was not he, but the Council of Warr that would have "His Royal Highness" put into the title, though he did not contribute one word to it.) But the Duke of York (28) did yesterday propose them to the Council, to be printed with this title: "Concluded on, by Sir J. Lawson (47), Knt". and my Lord quite left out. Here I find my Lord very politique; for he tells me, that he discerns they design to set up Lawson as much as they can and that he do counterplot them by setting him up higher still; by which they will find themselves spoiled of their design, and at last grow jealous of Lawson. This he told me with much pleasure; and that several of the Duke's servants, by name my Lord Barkeley (60), Mr. Talbot (32), and others, had complained to my Lord, of Coventry, and would have him out. My Lord do acknowledge that his greatest obstacle is Coventry. He did seem to hint such a question as this: "Hitherto I have been supported by the King (32) and Chancellor against the Duke; but what if it should come about, that it should be the Duke and Chancellor against the King (32)?" which, though he said it in these plain words, yet I could not fully understand it; but may more here after. My Lord did also tell me, that the Duke himself at Portsmouth did thank my Lord for all his pains and care; and that he perceived it must be the old Captains that must do the business; and that the new ones would spoil all. And that my Lord did very discreetly tell the Duke (though quite against his judgement and inclination), that, however, the King's new captains ought to be borne with a little and encouraged. By which he will oblige that party, and prevent, as much as may be, their envy; but he says that certainly things will go to rack if ever the old captains should be wholly out, and the new ones only command.
Then we fell to talk of Sir J. Minnes (63), of whom my Lord hath a very slight opinion, and that at first he did come to my Lord very displeased and sullen, and had studied and turned over all his books to see whether it had ever been that two flags should ride together in the main-top, but could not find it, nay, he did call his captains on board to consult them. So when he came by my Lord's side, he took down his flag, and all the day did not hoist it again, but next day my Lord did tell him that it was not so fit to ride without a flag, and therefore told him that he should wear it in the fore-top, for it seems my Lord saw his instructions, which were that he should not wear his flag in the maintop in the presence of the Duke or my Lord. But that after that my Lord did caress him, and he do believe him as much his friend as his interest will let him. I told my Lord of the late passage between Swan and me, and he told me another lately between Dr. Dell and himself when he was in the country.
At last we concluded upon dispatching all his accounts as soon as possible, and so I parted, and to my office, where I met Sir W. Pen (41), and he desired a turn with me in the garden, where he told me the day now was fixed for his going into Ireland; [Penn was Governor of Kinsale.-B.] and that whereas I had mentioned some service he could do a friend of mine there, Saml. Pepys1, he told me he would most readily do what I would command him, and then told me we must needs eat a dish of meat together before he went, and so invited me and my wife on Sunday next. To all which I did give a cold consent, for my heart cannot love or have a good opinion of him since his last playing the knave with me, but he took no notice of our difference at all, nor I to him, and so parted, and I by water to Deptford, where I found Sir W. Batten (61) alone paying off the yard three quarters pay.
Thence to dinner, where too great a one was prepared, at which I was very much troubled, and wished I had not been there.
After dinner comes Sir J. Minnes (63) and some captains with him, who had been at a Councill of Warr to-day, who tell us they have acquitted Captain Hall, who was accused of cowardice in letting of old Winter, the Argier pyrate, go away from him with a prize or two; and also Captain Diamond of the murder laid to him of a man that he had struck, but he lived many months after, till being drunk, he fell into the hold, and there broke his jaw and died, but they say there are such bawdy articles against him as never were heard of .... To the pay again, where I left them, and walked to Redriffe, and so home, and there came Mr. Creed and Shepley to me, and staid till night about my Lord's accounts, our proceeding to set them in order, and so parted and I to bed. Mr. Holliard (53) had been with my wife to-day, and cured her of her pain in her ear by taking out a most prodigious quantity of hard wax that had hardened itself in the bottom of the ear, of which I am very glad.
Note 1. Mentioned elsewhere as "My cousin in Ireland". He was son of Lord Chief Justice Richard Pepys.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 July 1662. 01 Jul 1662. To the office, and there we sat till past noon, and then Captain Cuttance and I by water to Deptford, where The Royal James (in which my Lord went out the last voyage, though (he) came back in the Charles) was paying off by Sir W. Batten (61) and Sir W. Pen (41).
So to dinner, where I had Mr. Sheply to dine with us, and from thence I sent to my Lord to know whether she should be a first rate, as the men would have her, or a second. He answered that we should forbear paying the officers and such whose pay differed upon the rate of the ship, till he could speak with his Royal Highness. To the Pay again after dinner, and seeing of Cooper, the mate of the ship, whom I knew in the Charles, I spoke to him about teaching the mathematiques, and do please myself in my thoughts of learning of him, and bade him come to me in a day or two.
Towards evening I left them, and to Redriffe by land, Mr. Cowly, the Clerk of the Cheque, with me, discoursing concerning the abuses of the yard, in which he did give me much light.
So by water home, and after half an hour sitting talking with my wife, who was afeard I did intend to go with my Lord to fetch the Queen mother (52) over, in which I did clear her doubts, I went to bed by daylight, in order to my rising early to-morrow.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 29 July 1662. 29 Jul 1662. Early up, and brought all my money, which is near £300, out of my house into this chamber; and so to the office, and there we sat all the morning, Sir George Carteret (52) and Mr. Coventry (34) being come from sea.
This morning among other things I broached the business of our being abused about flags, which I know doth trouble Sir W. Batten (61), but I care not.
At noon being invited I went with Sir George (52) and Mr. Coventry (34) to Sir W. Batten's (61) to dinner, and there merry, and very friendly to Sir Wm. and he to me, and complies much with me, but I know he envies me, and I do not value him.
To the office again, and in the evening walked to Deptford (Cooper with me talking of mathematiques), to send a fellow to prison for cutting of buoy ropes, and to see the difference between the flags sent in now-a-days, and I find the old ones, which were much cheaper, to be wholly as good. So I took one of a sort with me, and Mr. Wayth accompanying of me a good way, talking of the faults of the Navy, I walked to Redriffe back, and so home by water, and after having done, late, at the office, I went to my chamber and to bed.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 08 August 1662. 08 Aug 1662. Up by four o'clock in the morning, and at five by water to Woolwich, there to see the manner of tarring, and all the morning looking to see the several proceedings in making of cordage, and other things relating to that sort of works, much to my satisfaction.
At noon came Mr. Coventry (34) on purpose from Hampton Court to see the same, and dined with Mr. Falconer, and after dinner to several experiments of Hemp, and particularly some Milan hemp that is brought over ready dressed.
Thence we walked talking, very good discourse all the way to Greenwich, and I do find most excellent discourse from him. Among other things, his rule of suspecting every man that proposes any thing to him to be a knave; or, at least, to have some ends of his own in it. Being led thereto by the story of Sir John Millicent, that would have had a patent from King James for every man to have had leave to have given him a shilling; and that he might take it of every man that had a mind to give it, and being answered that that was a fair thing, but what needed he a patent for it, and what he would do to them that would not give him. He answered, he would not force them; but that they should come to the Council of State, to give a reason why they would not. Another rule is a proverb that he hath been taught, which is that a man that cannot sit still in his chamber (the reason of which I did not understand him), and he that cannot say no (that is, that is of so good a nature that he cannot deny any thing, or cross another in doing any thing), is not fit for business. The last of which is a very great fault of mine, which I must amend in.
Thence by boat; I being hot, he put the skirt of his cloak about me; and it being rough, he told me the passage of a Frenchman through London Bridge, where, when he saw the great fall, he begun to cross himself and say his prayers in the greatest fear in the world, and soon as he was over, he swore "Morbleu! c'est le plus grand plaisir du monde", being the most like a French humour in the world1. To Deptford, and there surprised the Yard, and called them to a muster, and discovered many abuses, which we shall be able to understand hereafter and amend.
Thence walked to Redriffe, and so to London Bridge, where I parted with him, and walked home and did a little business, and to supper and to bed.
Note 1. When the first editions of this Diary were printed no note was required here. Before the erection of the present London Bridge the fall of water at the ebb tide was great, and to pass at that time was called "Shooting the bridge". It was very hazardous for small boats. The ancient mode, even in Henry VIII's time, of going to the Tower and Greenwich, was to land at the Three Cranes, in Upper Thames Street, suffer the barges to shoot the bridge, and to enter them again at Billingsgate. See Cavendish's "Wolsey", p. 40, ed. 1852.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 03 September 1662. 03 Sep 1662. Up betimes, but now the days begin to shorten, and so whereas I used to rise by four o'clock, it is not broad daylight now till after five o'clock, so that it is after five before I do rise.
To my office, and about 8 o'clock I went over to Redriffe, and walked to Deptford, where I found Mr. Coventry (34) and Sir W. Pen (41) beginning the pay, it being my desire to be there to-day because it is the first pay that Mr. Coventry (34) has been at, and I would be thought to be as much with Mr. Coventry (34) as I can. Here we staid till noon, and by that time paid off the Breda, and then to dinner at the tavern, where I have obtained that our commons is not so large as they used to be, which I am glad to see.
After dinner by water to the office, and there we met and sold the Weymouth, Successe, and Fellowship hulkes, where pleasant to see how backward men are at first to bid; and yet when the candle is going out, how they bawl and dispute afterwards who bid the most first. And here I observed one man cunninger than the rest that was sure to bid the last man, and to carry it; and inquiring the reason, he told me that just as the flame goes out the smoke descends, which is a thing I never observed before, and by that he do know the instant when to bid last, which is very pretty.
In our discourse in the boat Mr. Coventry (34) told us how the Fanatiques and the Presbyters, that did intend to rise about this time, did choose this day as the most auspicious to them in their endeavours against monarchy: it being fatal twice to the King (32), and the day of Oliver's (63) death1. But, blessed be God! all is likely to be quiet, I hope.
After the sale I walked to my brother's, in my way meeting with Dr. Fairbrother, of whom I enquired what news in Church matters. He tells me, what I heard confirmed since, that it was fully resolved by the King's new Council that an indulgence should be granted the Presbyters; but upon the Bishop of London's (64) speech2 (who is now one of the most powerful men in England with the King (32)), their minds were wholly turned. And it is said that my Lord Albemarle (53) did oppose him most; but that I do believe is only in appearance. He told me also that most of the Presbyters now begin to wish they had complied, now they see that no Indulgence will be granted them, which they hoped for; and that the Bishop of London hath taken good care that places are supplied with very good and able men, which is the only thing that will keep all quiet.
I took him in the tavern at Puddle dock, but neither he nor I drank any of the wine we called for, but left it, and so after discourse parted, and Mr. Townsend not being at home I went to my brother's, and there heard how his love matter proceeded, which do not displease me, and so by water to White Hall to my Lord's lodgings, where he being to go to Hinchingbroke to-morrow morning, I staid and fiddled with Will Howe some new tunes very pleasant, and then my Lord came in and had much kind talk with him, and then to bed with Mr. Moore there alone. So having taken my leave of my Lord before I went to bed, I resolved to rise early and be gone without more speaking to him [Continued tomorow]
Note 1. Cromwell (63) had considered the 3rd of September as the most fortunate day of his life, on account of his victories at Dunbar and Worcester. It was also remarkable for the great storm that occurred at the time of his death; and as being the day on which the Fire of London, in 1666, burnt with the greatest fury. B.
Note 2. Gilbert Sheldon (64), born July 19th, 1598; Fellow of All Souls, Oxford, 1622; Warden, 1635; Bishop of London, 1660-63; Archbishop of Canterbury, 1663. Died November 9th, 1677.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 05 September 1662. 05 Sep 1662. Up by break of day at 5 o'clock, and down by water to Woolwich: in my way saw the yacht lately built by our virtuosoes (my Lord Brunkard (42) and others, with the help of Commissioner Pett (52) also) set out from Greenwich with the little Dutch bezan, to try for mastery; and before they got to Woolwich the Dutch beat them half-a-mile (and I hear this afternoon, that, in coming home, it got above three miles); which all our people are glad of.
Here I staid and mustered the yard and looked into the storehouses; and so walked all alone to Greenwich, and thence by water to Deptford, and there examined some stores, and did some of my own business in hastening my work there, and so walked to Redriffe, being by this time pretty weary and all in a sweat; took boat there for the Tower, which made me a little fearful, it being a cold, windy morning.
So to my lodgings and there rubbed myself clean, and so to Mr. Bland's, the merchant, by invitation, I alone of all our company of this office; where I found all the officers of the Customs, very grave fine gentlemen, and I am very glad to know them; viz.—Sir Job Harvy, Sir John Wolstenholme, Sir John Jacob, Sir Nicholas Crisp (63), Sir John Harrison, and Sir John Shaw: very good company. And among other pretty discourse, some was of Sir Jerom Bowes, Embassador from Queene Elizabeth to the Emperor of Russia;1 who, because some of the noblemen there would go up the stairs to the Emperor before him, he would not go up till the Emperor had ordered those two men to be dragged down stairs, with their heads knocking upon every stair till they were killed. And when he was come up, they demanded his sword of him before he entered the room. He told them, if they would have his sword, they should have his boots too. And so caused his boots to be pulled off, and his night-gown and night-cap and slippers to be sent for; and made the Emperor stay till he could go in his night-dress, since he might not go as a soldier. And lastly, when the Emperor in contempt, to show his command of his subjects, did command one to leap from the window down and broke his neck in the sight of our Embassador, he replied that his mistress did set more by, and did make better use of the necks of her subjects but said that, to show what her subjects would do for her, he would, and did, fling down his gantlett before the Emperor; and challenged all the nobility there to take it up, in defence of the Emperor against his Queen for which, at this very day, the name of Sir Jerom Bowes is famous and honoured there.
After dinner I came home and found Sir John Minnes (63) come this day, and I went to him to Sir W. Batten's (61), where it pleased me to see how jealous Sir Williams both are of my going down to Woolwich, &c., and doing my duty as I nowadays do, and of my dining with the Commission of the Customs.
So to my office, and there till 9 at night, and so to my lodgings to bed. I this day heard that Mr. Martin Noell (62) is knighted by the King (32), which I much wonder at; but yet he is certainly a very useful man.
Note 1. In 1583; the object of his mission being to persuade the Muscovite (Ivan IV. The Terrible) to a peace with John, King of Sweden. He was also employed to confirm the trade of the English with Russia, and having incurred some personal danger, was received with favour on his return by the Queen (23). He died in 1616.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 08 September 1662. 08 Sep 1662. Up betimes and to my office preparing an account to give the Duke this morning of what we have of late done at the office. About 7 o'clock I went forth thinking to go along with Sir John Minnes (63) and the rest, and I found them gone, which did vex me, so I went directly to the Old Swan and took boat before them to Sir G. Carteret's (52) lodgings at Whitehall, and there staying till he was dressed talking with him, he and I to St. James's, where Sir Williams both and Sir John were come, and so up with Mr. Coventry (34) to the Duke; who, after he was out of his bed, did send for us in; and, when he was quite ready, took us into his closet, and there told us that he do intend to renew the old custom for the Admirals to have their principal officers to meet them once a-week, to give them an account what they have done that week; which I am glad of: and so the rest did tell his Royal Highness that I could do it best for the time past.
And so I produced my short notes, and did give him an account of all that we have of late done; and proposed to him several things for his commands, which he did give us, and so dismissed us.
The rest to Deptford, I to the Exchequer to meet Mr. Townsend, where I hear he is gone to the Sun tavern, and there found him with some friends at breakfast, which I eat with him, and so we crossed the water together, and in walking I told him my brother Tom's (28) intentions for a wife, which he would do me all favour in to Mr. Young, whose kinswoman he do look after.
We took boat again at the Falcon, and there parted, and I to the Old Swan, and so to the Change, and there meeting Sir W. Warren did step to a tavern, and there sat and talked about price of masts and other things, and so broke up and to my office to see what business, and so we took water again, and at the Tower I over to Redriffe, and there left him in the boat and walked to Deptford, and there up and down the yard speaking with people, and so Sir W. Pen (41) coming out of the payhouse did single me out to tell me Sir J. Minnes' (63) dislike of my blinding his lights over his stairs (which indeed is very bad) and blocking up the house of office on the leads.
Which did trouble me. So I went into the payhouse and took an occasion of speaking with him alone, and did give him good satisfaction therein, so as that I am well pleased and do hope now to have my closet on the leads without any more trouble, for he do not object against my having a door upon the leads, but that all my family should not make it a thoroughfare, which I am contented with.
So to the pay, and in the evening home in the barge, and so to my office, and after doing some business there to my lodgings, and so to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 19 September 1662. 19 Sep 1662. Up betimes and to my office, and at 9 o'clock, none of the rest going, I went alone to Deptford, and there went on where they left last night to pay Woolwich yard, and so at noon dined well, being chief at the table, and do not see but every body begins to give me as much respect and honour as any of the rest.
After dinner to Pay again, and so till 9 at night, my great trouble being that I was forced to begin an ill practice of bringing down the wages of servants, for which people did curse me, which I do not love.
At night, after I had eaten a cold pullet, I walked by brave moonshine, with three or four armed men to guard me, to Redriffe, it being a joy to my heart to think of the condition that I am now in, that people should of themselves provide this for me, unspoke to. I hear this walk is dangerous to walk alone by night, and much robbery committed here. So from thence by water home, and so to my lodgings to bed.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 06 October 1662. 06 Oct 1662. Sir W. Pen (41) and I early to St. James's by water, where Mr. Coventry (34), finding the Duke in bed, and not very well, we did not stay to speak with him, but to White Hall, and there took boat and down to Woolwich we went. In our way Mr. Coventry (34) telling us how of late upon enquiry into the miscarriages of the Duke's family, Mr. Biggs, his steward, is found very faulty, and is turned out of his employment.
Then we fell to reading of a book which I saw the other day at my Lord Sandwich's (37), intended for the late King, finely bound up, a treatise concerning the benefit the Hollanders make of our fishing, but whereas I expected great matters from it, I find it a very impertinent [book], and though some things good, yet so full of tautologies, that we were weary of it.
At Woolwich we mustered the yard, and then to the Hart to dinner, and then to the Rope-yard, where I did vex Sir W. Pen (41) I know to appear so well acquainted, I thought better than he, in the business of hemp; thence to Deptford, and there looked over several businesses, and wakened the officers there; so walked to Redriffe, and thence, landing Sir W. Pen (41) at the Tower, I to White Hall with Mr. Coventry (34), and so to my Lord Sandwich's (37) lodgings, but my Lord was not within, being at a ball this night with the King (32) at my Baroness Castlemaine's (21) at next door.
But here to my trouble I hear that Mr. Moore is gone very sick to the Wardrobe this afternoon, which troubles me much both for his own sake and for mine, because of my law business that he does for me and also for my Lord's matters.
So hence by water, late as it was, to the Wardrobe, and there found him in a high fever, in bed, and much cast down by his being ill. So thought it not convenient to stay, but left him and walked home, and there weary went to supper, and then the barber came to me, and after he had done, to my office to set down my journall of this day, and so home and to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 24 January 1663. 24 Jan 1663. Lay pretty long, and by lying with my sheet upon my lip, as I have of old observed it, my upper lip was blistered in the morning.
To the office all the morning, sat till noon, then to the Exchange to look out for a ship for Tangier, and delivered my manuscript to be bound at the stationer's.
So to dinner at home, and then down to Redriffe, to see a ship hired for Tangier, what readiness she was in, and found her ready to sail. Then home, and so by coach to Mr. Povy's (49), where Sir Wm. Compton (38), Mr. Bland, Gawden, Sir J. Lawson (48) and myself met to settle the victualling of Tangier for the time past, which with much ado we did, and for a six months' supply more.
So home in Mr. Gawden's coach, and to my office till late about business, and find that it is business that must and do every day bring me to something1.
So home to supper and to bed.
Note 1. In earlier days Pepys noted for us each few pounds or shillings of graft which he annexed at each transaction in his office.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 18 March 1663. 18 Mar 1663. Wake betimes and talk a while with my wife about a wench that she has hired yesterday, which I would have enquired of before she comes, she having lived in great families, and so up and to my office, where all the morning, and at noon home to dinner.
After dinner by water to Redriffe, my wife and Ashwell with me, and so walked and left them at Halfway house; I to Deptford, where up and down the store-houses, and on board two or three ships now getting ready to go to sea, and so back, and find my wife walking in the way.
So home again, merry with our Ashwell, who is a merry jade, and so awhile to my office, and then home to supper, and to bed. This day my tryangle, which was put in tune yesterday, did please me very well, Ashwell playing upon it pretty well.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 19 March 1663. 19 Mar 1663. Up betimes and to Woolwich all alone by water, where took the officers most abed. I walked and enquired how all matters and businesses go, and by and by to the Clerk of the Cheque's house, and there eat some of his good Jamaica brawne, and so walked to Greenwich. Part of the way Deane walking with me; talking of the pride and corruption of most of his fellow officers of the yard, and which I believe to be true.
So to Deptford, where I did the same to great content, and see the people begin to value me as they do the rest.
At noon Mr. Wayth took me to his house, where I dined, and saw his wife, a pretty woman, and had a good fish dinner, and after dinner he and I walked to Redriffe talking of several errors in the Navy, by which I learned a great deal, and was glad of his company.
So by water home, and by and by to the office, where we sat till almost 9 at night. So after doing my own business in my office, writing letters, &c., home to supper, and to bed, being weary and vexed that I do not find other people so willing to do business as myself, when I have taken pains to find out what in the yards is wanting and fitting to be done.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 14 April 1663. 14 Apr 1663. Up betimes to my office, where busy till 8 o'clock that Sir W. Batten (62), Sir J. Minnes (64), Sir W. Pen (41) and I down by barge to Woolwich, to see "The Royal James" launched, where she has been under repair a great while. We staid in the yard till almost noon, and then to Mr. Falconer's to a dinner of fish of our own sending, and when it was just ready to come upon the table, word is brought that the King (32) and Duke (29) are come, so they all went away to shew themselves, while I staid and had a little dish or two by myself, resolving to go home, and by the time I had dined they came again, having gone to little purpose, the King (32), I believe, taking little notice of them. So they to dinner, and I staid a little with them, and so good bye. I walked to Greenwich, studying the Slide Rule for measuring of timber, which is very fine.
Thence to Deptford by water, and walked through the yard, and so walked to Redriffe, and so home pretty weary, to my office, where anon they all came home, the ship well launched, and so sat at the office till 9 at night, and I longer doing business at my office, and so home to supper, my father being come, and to bed.
Sir G. Carteret (53) tells me to-night that he perceives the Parliament is likely to make a great bustle before they will give the King (32) any money; will call all things into question; and, above all, the expences of the Navy; and do enquire into the King's expences everywhere, and into the truth of the report of people being forced to sell their bills at 15 per cent. loss in the Navy; and, lastly, that they are in a very angry pettish mood at present, and not likely to be better.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 22 May 1663. 22 May 1663. Up pretty betimes, and shall, I hope, come to myself and business again, after a small playing the truant, for I find that my interest and profit do grow daily, for which God be praised and keep me to my duty.
To my office, and anon one tells me that Rundall, the house-carpenter of Deptford, hath sent me a fine blackbird, which I went to see. He tells me he was offered 20s. for him as he came along, he do so whistle.
So to my office, and busy all the morning, among other things, learning to understand the course of the tides, and I think I do now do it.
At noon Mr. Creed comes to me, and he and I to the Exchange, where I had much discourse with several merchants, and so home with him to dinner, and then by water to Greenwich, and calling at the little alehouse at the end of the town to wrap a rag about my little left toe, being new sore with walking, we walked pleasantly to Woolwich, in our way hearing the nightingales sing.
So to Woolwich yard, and after doing many things there, among others preparing myself for a dispute against Sir W. Pen (42) in the business of Bowyer's, wherein he is guilty of some corruption to the King's wrong, we walked back again without drinking, which I never do because I would not make my coming troublesome to any, nor would become obliged too much to any. In our going back we were overtook by Mr. Steventon, a purser, and uncle to my clerk Will, who told me how he was abused in the passing of his accounts by Sir J. Minnes (64) to the degree that I am ashamed to hear it, and resolve to retrieve the matter if I can though the poor man has given it over. And however am pleased enough to see that others do see his folly and dotage as well as myself, though I believe in my mind the man in general means well.
Took boat at Greenwich and to Deptford, where I did the same thing, and found Davis, the storekeeper, a knave, and shuffling in the business of Bewpers, being of the party with Young and Whistler to abuse the King (32), but I hope I shall be even with them.
So walked to Redriffe, drinking at the Half-way house, and so walked and by water to White Hall, all our way by water coming and going reading a little book said to be writ by a person of Quality concerning English gentry to be preferred before titular honours, but the most silly nonsense, no sense nor grammar, yet in as good words that ever I saw in all my life, but from beginning to end you met not with one entire and regular sentence. At White Hall Sir G. Carteret (53) was out of the way, and so returned back presently, and home by water and to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 05 June 1663. 05 Jun 1663. Up and to read a little, and by and by the carver coming, I directed him how to make me a neat head for my viall that is making. About 10 o'clock my wife and I, not without some discontent, abroad by coach, and I set her at her father's; but their condition is such that she will not let me see where they live, but goes by herself when I am out of sight.
Thence to my brother's, taking care for a passage for my wife the next week in a coach to my father's, and thence to Paul's Churchyard, where I found several books ready bound for me; among others, the new Concordance of the Bible, which pleases me much, and is a book I hope to make good use of.
Thence, taking the little History of England with me, I went by water to Deptford, where Sir J. Minnes (64) and Sir W. Batten (62) attending the Pay; I dined with them, and there Dr. Britton, parson of the town, a fine man and good company, dined with us, and good discourse.
After dinner I left them and walked to Redriffe, and thence to White Hall, and at my Lord's lodgings found my wife, and thence carried her to see my Lady Jemimah, but she was not within.
So to Mr. Turner's, and there saw Mr. Edward Pepys's lady, who my wife concurs with me to be very pretty, as most women we ever saw.
So home, and after a walk in the garden a little troubled to see my wife take no more pleasure with Ashwell, but neglect her and leave her at home.
Home to supper and to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 17 July 1663. 17 Jul 1663. Up, and after doing some business at my office, Creed came to me, and I took him to my viall maker's, and there I heard the famous Mr. Stefkins play admirably well, and yet I found it as it is always, I over expected. I took him to the tavern and found him a temperate sober man, at least he seems so to me. I commit the direction of my viall to him.
Thence to the Change, and so home, Creed and I to dinner, and after dinner Sir W. Warren came to me, and he and I in my closet about his last night's contract, and from thence to discourse of measuring of timber, wherein I made him see that I could understand the matter well, and did both learn of and teach him something. Creed being gone through my staying talking to him so long, I went alone by water down to Redriffe, and so to sit and talk with Sir W. Pen (42), where I did speak very plainly concerning my thoughts of Sir G. Carteret (53) and Sir J. Minnes (64). So as it may cost me some trouble if he should tell them again, but he said as much or more to me concerning them both, which I may remember if ever it should come forth, and nothing but what is true and my real opinion of them, that they neither do understand to this day Creed's accounts, nor do deserve to be employed in their places without better care, but that the King (33) had better give them greater salaries to stand still and do nothing.
Thence coming home I was saluted by Bagwell (26) and his wife (the woman I have a kindness for), and they would have me into their little house, which I was willing enough to, and did salute his wife. They had got wine for me, and I perceive live prettily, and I believe the woman a virtuous modest woman. Her husband walked through to Redriffe with me, telling me things that I asked of in the yard, and so by water home, it being likely to rain again to-night, which God forbid. To supper and to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 03 September 1663. 03 Sep 1663. Up betimes, and for an hour at my viall before my people rise.
Then up and to the office a while, and then to Sir W. Batten (62), who is going this day for pleasure down to the Downes. I eat a breakfast with them, and at my Lady's desire with them by coach to Greenwich, where I went aboard with them on the Charlotte yacht. The wind very fresh, and I believe they will be all sicke enough, besides that she is mighty troublesome on the water. Methinks she makes over much of her husband's ward, young Mr. Griffin, as if she expected some service from him when he comes to it, being a pretty young boy. I left them under sayle, and I to Deptford, and, after a word or two with Sir J. Minnes (64), walked to Redriffe and so home. In my way, it coming into my head, overtaking of a beggar or two on the way that looked like Gypsys, what the Gypsys 8 or 9 days ago had foretold, that somebody that day se'nnight should be with me to borrow money, but I should lend none; and looking, when I came to my office, upon my journall, that my brother John (22) had brought a letter that day from my brother Tom (29) to borrow £20 more of me, which had vexed me so that I had sent the letter to my father into the country, to acquaint him of it, and how little he is beforehand that he is still forced to borrow. But it pleased me mightily to see how, contrary to my expectations, having so lately lent him £20, and belief that he had money by him to spare, and that after some days not thinking of it, I should look back and find what the Gypsy had told me to be so true.
After dinner at home to my office, and there till late doing business, being very well pleased with Mr. Cutler's coming to me about some business, and among other things tells me that they value me as a man of business, which he accounts the best virtuoso, and I know his thinking me so, and speaking where he comes, may be of good use to me.
Home to supper, and to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 18 November 1663. 18 Nov 1663. Up, and after being ready, and done a little business at the office, I and Mr. Hater by water to Redriffe, and so walked to Deptford, where I have not been a very great, while, and there paid off the Milford in very good order, and all respect showed me in the office as much as there used to be to any of the rest or the whole board. That done at noon I took Captain Terne, and there coming in by chance Captain Berkeley, him also to dinner with me to the Globe. Captain Berkeley, who was lately come from Algier, did give us a good account of the place, and how the Basha there do live like a prisoner, being at the mercy of the soldiers and officers, so that there is nothing but a great confusion there.
After dinner came Sir W. Batten (62), and I left him to pay off another ship, and I walked home again reading of a little book of new poems of Cowley's (45), given me by his brother. Abraham do lie, it seems, very sicke, still, but like to recover.
At my office till late, and then came Mr. Hollyard (54) so full of discourse and Latin that I think he hath got a cupp, but I do not know; but full of talke he is in defence of Calvin and Luther. He begun this night the fomentation to my wife, and I hope it will do well with her.
He gone, I to the office again a little, and so to bed. This morning I sent Will with my great letter of reproof to my Lord Sandwich (38), who did give it into his owne hand. I pray God give a blessing to it, but confess I am afeard what the consequence may be to me of good or bad, which is according to the ingenuity that he do receive it with. However, I am satisfied that it will do him good, and that he needs it: MY LORD, I do verily hope that neither the manner nor matter of this advice will be condemned by your Lordship, when for my defence in the first I shall allege my double attempt, since your return from Hinchinbroke, of doing it personally, in both of which your Lordship's occasions, no doubtfulnesse of mine, prevented me, and that being now fearful of a sudden summons to Portsmouth, for the discharge of some ships there, I judge it very unbecoming the duty which every bit of bread I eat tells me I owe to your Lordship to expose the safety of your honour to the uncertainty of my return. For the matter, my Lord, it is such as could I in any measure think safe to conceal from, or likely to be discovered to you by any other hand, I should not have dared so far to owne what from my heart I believe is false, as to make myself but the relater of other's discourse; but, sir, your Lordship's honour being such as I ought to value it to be, and finding both in city and court that discourses pass to your prejudice, too generally for mine or any man's controllings but your Lordship's, I shall, my Lord, without the least greatening or lessening the matter, do my duty in laying it shortly before you. People of all conditions, my Lord, raise matter of wonder from your Lordship's so little appearance at Court: some concluding thence their disfavour thereby, to which purpose I have had questions asked me, and endeavouring to put off such insinuations by asserting the contrary, they have replied, that your Lordship's living so beneath your quality, out of the way, and declining of Court attendance, hath been more than once discoursed about the King (33). Others, my Lord, when the chief ministers of State, and those most active of the Council have been reckoned up, wherein your Lordship never used to want an eminent place, have said, touching your Lordship, that now your turn was served, and the King (33) had given you a good estate, you left him to stand or fall as he would, and, particularly in that of the Navy, have enlarged upon your letting fall all service there. Another sort, and those the most, insist upon the bad report of the house wherein your Lordship, now observed in perfect health again, continues to sojourne, and by name have charged one of the daughters for a common courtizan, alleging both places and persons where and with whom she hath been too well known, and how much her wantonnesse occasions, though unjustly, scandal to your Lordship, and that as well to gratifying of some enemies as to the wounding of more friends I am not able to tell. Lastly, my Lord, I find a general coldness in all persons towards your Lordship, such as, from my first dependance on you, I never yet knew, wherein I shall not offer to interpose any thoughts or advice of mine, well knowing your Lordship needs not any. But with a most faithful assurance that no person nor papers under Heaven is privy to what I here write, besides myself and this, which I shall be careful to have put into your owne hands, I rest confident of your Lordship's just construction of my dutifull intents herein, and in all humility take leave, may it please your Lordship, Your Lordship's most obedient Servant, S. P.
The foregoing letter was sealed up, and enclosed in this that follows MY LORD, If this finds your Lordship either not alone, or not at leisure, I beg the suspending your opening of the enclosed till you shall have both, the matter very well bearing such a delay, and in all humility remain, may it please your Lordship, Your Lordship's most obedient Servant, S. P. November 17, 1663. My servant hath my directions to put this into your Lordship's owne hand, but not to stay for any answer.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 28 January 1664. 28 Jan 1664. Up and to the office, where all the morning sitting, and at noon upon several things to the 'Change, and thence to Sir G. Carteret's (54) to dinner of my own accord, and after dinner with Mr. Wayth down to Deptford doing several businesses, and by land back again, it being very cold, the boat meeting me after my staying a while for him at an alehouse by Redriffe stairs.
So home, and took Will coming out of my doors, at which I was a little moved, and told my wife of her keeping him from the office (though God knows my base jealous head was the cause of it), which she seemed troubled at, and that it was only to discourse with her about finding a place for her brother.
So I to my office late, Mr. Commander coming to read over my will in order to the engrossing it, and so he being gone I to other business, among others chiefly upon preparing matters against Creed for my profit, and so home to supper and bed, being mightily troubled with my left eye all this evening from some dirt that is got into it.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 12 February 1664. 12 Feb 1664. Up, and ready, did find below Mr. Creed's boy with a letter from his master for me. So I fell to reading it, and it is by way of stating the case between S. Pepys and J. Creed most excellently writ, both showing his stoutness and yet willingness to peace, reproaching me yet flattering me again, and in a word in as good a manner as I think the world could have wrote, and indeed put me to a greater stand than ever I thought I could have been in this matter.
All the morning thinking how to behave myself in the business, and at noon to the Coffee-house; thence by his appointment met him upon the 'Change, and with him back to the Coffee-house, where with great seriousness and strangeness on both sides he said his part and I mine, he sometimes owning my favour and assistance, yet endeavouring to lessen it, as that the success of his business was not wholly or very much to be imputed to that assistance: I to allege the contrary, and plainly to tell him that from the beginning I never had it in my mind to do him all that kindnesse for nothing, but he gaining 5 or £600, I did expect a share of it, at least a real and not a complimentary acknowledgment of it. In fine I said nothing all the while that I need fear he can do me more hurt with them than before I spoke them. The most I told him was after we were come to a peace, which he asked me whether he should answer the Board's letter or no. I told him he might forbear it a while and no more. Then he asked how the letter could be signed by them without their much enquiry. I told him it was as I worded it and nothing at all else of any moment, whether my words be ever hereafter spoken of again or no. So that I have the same neither better nor worse force over him that I had before, if he should not do his part. And the peace between us was this: Says he after all, well, says he, I know you will expect, since there must be some condescension, that it do become me to begin it, and therefore, says he, I do propose (just like the interstice between the death of the old and the coming in of the present king, all the time is swallowed up as if it had never been) so our breach of friendship may be as if it had never been, that I should lay aside all misapprehensions of him or his first letter, and that he would reckon himself obliged to show the same ingenuous acknowledgment of my love and service to him as at the beginning he ought to have done, before by my first letter I did (as he well observed) put him out of a capacity of doing it, without seeming to do it servilely, and so it rests, and I shall expect how he will deal with me.
After that I began to be free, and both of us to discourse of other things, and he went home with me and dined with me and my wife and very pleasant, having a good dinner and the opening of my lampry (cutting a notch on one side), which proved very good.
After dinner he and I to Deptford, walking all the way, where we met Sir W. Petty (40) and I took him back, and I got him to go with me to his vessel and discourse it over to me, which he did very well, and then walked back together to the waterside at Redriffe, with good discourse all the way.
So Creed and I by boat to my house, and thence to coach with my wife and called at Alderman Backewell's (46) and there changed Mr. Falconer's state-cup, that he did give us the other day, for a fair tankard. The cup weighed with the fashion £5 16s., and another little cup that Joyce Norton did give us 17s., both £6 13s.; for which we had the tankard, which came to £6 10s., at 5s. 7d. per oz., and 3s. in money, and with great content away thence to my brother's, Creed going away there, and my brother bringing me the old silk standard that I lodged there long ago, and then back again home, and thence, hearing that my uncle Wight (62) had been at my house, I went to him to the Miter, and there with him and Maes, Norbury, and Mr. Rawlinson till late eating some pot venison (where the Crowne earthen pot pleased me mightily), and then homewards and met Mr. Barrow, so back with him to the Miter and sat talking about his business of his discontent in the yard, wherein sometimes he was very foolish and pettish, till 12 at night, and so went away, and I home and up to my wife a-bed, with my mind ill at ease whether I should think that I had by this made myself a bad end by missing the certainty of £100 which I proposed to myself so much, or a good one by easing myself of the uncertain good effect but the certain trouble and reflection which must have fallen on me if we had proceeded to a public dispute, ended besides embarking myself against my Lord, who (which I had forgot) had given him his hand for the value of the pieces of eight at his rates which were all false, which by the way I shall take heed to the giving of my Lord notice of it hereafter whenever he goes out again.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 24 March 1664. 24 Mar 1664. Called up by my father, poor man, coming to advise with me about Tom's house and other matters, and he being gone I down by water to Greenwich, it being very-foggy, and I walked very finely to Woolwich, and there did very much business at both yards, and thence walked back, Captain Grove with me talking, and so to Deptford and did the like-there, and then walked to Redriffe (calling and eating a bit of collops and eggs at Half-way house), and so home to the office, where we sat late, and home weary to supper and to bed.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 02 November 1664. 02 Nov 1664. Up betimes, and down with Mr. Castle (35) to Redriffe, and there walked to Deptford to view a parcel of brave knees [Knees of timber] of his, which indeed are very good, and so back again home, I seeming very friendly to him, though I know him to be a rogue, and one that hates me with his heart.
Home and to dinner, and so to my office all the afternoon, where in some pain in my backe, which troubled me, but I think it comes only with stooping, and from no other matter.
At night to Nellson's, and up and down about business, and so home to my office, then home to supper and to bed.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 22 December 1664. 22 Dec 1664. Up and betimes to my office, and then out to several places, among others to Holborne to have spoke with one Mr. Underwood about some English hemp, he lies against Gray's Inn. Thereabouts I to a barber's shop to have my hair cut, and there met with a copy of verses, mightily commended by some gentlemen there, of my Lord Mordaunt's (38), in excuse of his going to sea this late expedition, with the Duke of Yorke (31). But, Lord! they are but sorry things; only a Lord made them.
Thence to the 'Change; and there, among the merchants, I hear fully the news of our being beaten to dirt at Guinny, by De Ruyter (57) with his fleete. The particulars, as much as by Sir G. Carteret (54) afterwards I heard, I have said in a letter to my Lord Sandwich (39) this day at Portsmouth; it being most wholly to the utter ruine of our Royall Company, and reproach and shame to the whole nation, as well as justification to them in their doing wrong to no man as to his private [property], only takeing whatever is found to belong to the Company, and nothing else.
Dined at the Dolphin, Sir G. Carteret (54), Sir J. Minnes (65), Sir W. Batten (63), and I, with Sir W. Boreman and Sir Theophilus Biddulph and others, Commissioners of the Sewers, about our place below to lay masts in.
But coming a little too soon, I out again, and tooke boat down to Redriffe; and just in time within two minutes, and saw the new vessel of Sir William Petty's (41) launched, the King (34) and Duke (31) being there1. It swims and looks finely, and I believe will do well. The name I think is Twilight, but I do not know certainly.
Coming away back immediately to dinner, where a great deal of good discourse, and Sir G. Carteret's (54) discourse of this Guinny business, with great displeasure at the losse of our honour there, and do now confess that the trade brought all these troubles upon us between the Dutch and us.
Thence to the office and there sat late, then I to my office and there till 12 at night, and so home to bed weary.
Note 1. Pepys was wrong as to the name of Sir William Petty's (41) new doublekeeled boat. On February 13th, 1664-65, he gives the correct title, which was "The Experiment".

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 20 February 1665. 20 Feb 1665. Up, and with Sir J. Minnes (65) to attend the Duke (31), and then we back again and rode into the beginning of my Chancellor's (56) new house, near St. James's; which common people have already called Dunkirke-house, from their opinion of his having a good bribe for the selling of that towne. And very noble I believe it will be. Near that is my Lord Barkeley (63) beginning another on one side, and Sir J. Denham (50) on the other.
Thence I to the House of Lords and spoke with my Lord Bellasses (50), and so to the 'Change, and there did business, and so to the Sun taverne, haling in the morning had some high words with Sir J. Lawson (50) about his sending of some bayled goods to Tangier, wherein the truth is I did not favour him, but being conscious that some of my profits may come out by some words that fell from him, and to be quiet, I have accommodated it. Here we dined merry; but my club and the rest come to 7s. 6d., which was too much.
Thence to the office, and there found Bagwell's wife, whom I directed to go home, and I would do her business, which was to write a letter to my Lord Sandwich (39) for her husband's (28) advance into a better ship as there should be occasion. Which I did, and by and by did go down by water to Deptford, and then down further, and so landed at the lower end of the town, and it being dark 'entrer en la maison de la femme de Bagwell (28) [entered into Bagwell's wife's house]', and there had 'sa compagnie [her company]', though with a great deal of difficulty, 'neanmoins en fin j'avais ma volont d'elle [nevertheless in the end I had my way with her]', and being sated therewith, I walked home to Redriffe, it being now near nine o'clock, and there I did drink some strong waters and eat some bread and cheese, and so home. Where at my office my wife comes and tells me that she hath hired a chamber mayde, one of the prettiest maydes that ever she saw in her life, and that she is really jealous of me for her, but hath ventured to hire her from month to month, but I think she means merrily.
So to supper and to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 May 1665. 01 May 1665. Up and to Mr. Povy's (51), and by his bedside talked a good while. Among other things he do much insist I perceive upon the difficulty of getting of money, and would fain have me to concur in the thinking of some other way of disposing of the place of Treasurer to one Mr. Bell, but I did seem slight of it, and resolved to try to do the best or to give it up.
Thence to the Duke of Albemarle (56), where I was sorry to find myself to come a little late, and so home, and at noon going to the 'Change I met my Lord Brunkard (45), Sir Robert Murry (57), Deane Wilkins (51), and Mr. Hooke (29), going by coach to Colonell Blunts (61) to dinner. So they stopped and took me with them. Landed at the Tower-wharf, and thence by water to Greenwich; and there coaches met us; and to his house, a very stately sight for situation and brave plantations; and among others, a vineyard, the first that ever I did see. No extraordinary dinner, nor any other entertainment good; but only after dinner to the tryall of some experiments about making of coaches easy. And several we tried; but one did prove mighty easy (not here for me to describe, but the whole body of the coach lies upon one long spring), and we all, one after another, rid in it; and it is very fine and likely to take. These experiments were the intent of their coming, and pretty they are.
Thence back by coach to Greenwich, and in his pleasure boat to Deptford, and there stopped and in to Mr. Evelyn's (44)1, which is a most beautiful place; but it being dark and late, I staid not; but Deane Wilkins (51) and Mr. Hooke (29) and I walked to Redriffe; and noble discourse all day long did please me, and it being late did take them to my house to drink, and did give them some sweetmeats, and thence sent them with a lanthorn home, two worthy persons as are in England, I think, or the world.
So to my Lady Batten, where my wife is tonight, and so after some merry talk home and to bed.
Note 1. Sayes Court, the well-known residence of John Evelyn (44).

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 22 May 1665. 22 May 1665. Up, and down to the ships, which now are hindered from going down to the fleete (to our great sorrow and shame) with their provisions, the wind being against them.
So to the Duke of Albemarle (56), and thence down by water to Deptford, it being Trinity Monday, and so the day of choosing the Master of Trinity House for the next yeare, where, to my great content, I find that, contrary to the practice and design of Sir W. Batten (64), to breake the rule and custom of the Company in choosing their Masters by succession, he would have brought in Sir W. Rider or Sir W. Pen (44), over the head of Hurleston (who is a knave too besides, I believe), the younger brothers did all oppose it against the elder, and with great heat did carry it for Hurleston, which I know will vex him to the heart.
Thence, the election being over, to church, where an idle sermon from that conceited fellow, Dr. Britton, saving that his advice to unity, and laying aside all envy and enmity among them was very apposite.
Thence walked to Redriffe, and so to the Trinity House, and a great dinner, as is usual, and so to my office, where busy all the afternoon till late, and then home to bed, being much troubled in mind for several things, first, for the condition of the fleete for lacke of provisions, the blame this office lies under and the shame that they deserve to have brought upon them for the ships not being gone out of the River, and then for my business of Tangier which is not settled, and lastly for fear that I am not observed to have attended the office business of late as much as I ought to do, though there has been nothing but my attendance on Tangier that has occasioned my absence, and that of late not much.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 15 July 1665. 15 Jul 1665. Up, and after all business done, though late, I to Deptford, but before I went out of the office saw there young Bagwell's wife returned, but could not stay to speak to her, though I had a great mind to it, and also another great lady, as to fine clothes, did attend there to have a ticket signed; which I did do, taking her through the garden to my office, where I signed it and had a salute [kiss] of her, and so I away by boat to Redriffe, and thence walked, and after dinner, at Sir G. Carteret's (55), where they stayed till almost three o'clock for me, and anon took boat, Mr. Carteret and I to the ferry-place at Greenwich, and there staid an hour crossing the water to and again to get our coach and horses over; and by and by set out, and so toward Dagenhams.
But, Lord! what silly discourse we had by the way as to love-matters, he being the most awkerd man I ever met with in my life as to that business. Thither we come, by that time it begun to be dark, and were kindly received by Lady Wright and my Lord Crew (67). And to discourse they went, my Lord discoursing with him, asking of him questions of travell, which he answered well enough in a few words; but nothing to the lady from him at all.
To supper, and after supper to talk again, he yet taking no notice of the lady. My Lord would have had me have consented to leaving the young people together to-night, to begin their amours, his staying being but to be little. But I advised against it, lest the lady might be too much surprised.
So they led him up to his chamber, where I staid a little, to know how he liked the lady, which he told me he did mightily; but, Lord! in the dullest insipid manner that ever lover did.
So I bid him good night, and down to prayers with my Lord Crew's (67) family, and after prayers, my Lord, and Lady Wright, and I, to consult what to do; and it was agreed at last to have them go to church together, as the family used to do, though his lameness was a great objection against it. But at last my Lady Jem. sent me word by my Lady Wright that it would be better to do just as they used to do before his coming; and therefore she desired to go to church, which was yielded then to.

Read More ...

Great Plague of London

Diary of Samuel Pepys 20 July 1665. 20 Jul 1665. Up, in a boat among other people to the Tower, and there to the office, where we sat all the morning.
So down to Deptford and there dined, and after dinner saw my Lady Sandwich (40) and Mr. Carteret (24) and his two sisters over the water, going to Dagenhams, and my Baroness Carteret (63) towards Cranburne1. So all the company broke up in most extraordinary joy, wherein I am mighty contented that I have had the good fortune to be so instrumental, and I think it will be of good use to me.
So walked to Redriffe, where I hear the sickness is, and indeed is scattered almost every where, there dying 1089 of the plague this week. My Baroness Carteret (63) did this day give me a bottle of plague-water home with me.
So home to write letters late, and then home to bed, where I have not lain these 3 or 4 nights. I received yesterday a letter from my Lord Sandwich (39), giving me thanks for my care about their marriage business, and desiring it to be dispatched, that no disappointment may happen therein, which I will help on all I can.
This afternoon I waited on the Duke of Albemarle (56), and so to Mrs. Croft's, where I found and saluted Mrs. Burrows, who is a very pretty woman for a mother of so many children. But, Lord! to see how the plague spreads. It being now all over King's Streete, at the Axe, and next door to it, and in other places.
Note 1. The royal lodge of that name in Windsor Forest, occupied by Sir George Carteret (55) as Vice-Chamberlain to the King (35). B.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 05 August 1665. 05 Aug 1665. In the morning up, and my wife showed me several things of her doing, especially one fine woman's Persian head mighty finely done, beyond what I could expect of her; and so away by water, having ordered in the yarde six or eight bargemen to be whipped, who had last night stolen some of the King's cordage from out of the yarde. I to Deptford, and there by agreement met with my Lord Bruncker (45), and there we kept our office, he and I, and did what there was to do, and at noon parted to meet at the office next week. Sir W. Warren and I thence did walk through the rain to Half-Way House, and there I eat a piece of boiled beef and he and I talked over several businesses, among others our design upon the mast docke, which I hope to compass and get 2 or £300 by.
Thence to Redriffe, where we parted, and I home, where busy all the afternoon. Stepped to Colvill's to set right a business of money, where he told me that for certain De Ruyter (58) is come home, with all his fleete, which is very ill newes, considering the charge we have been at in keeping a fleete to the northward so long, besides the great expectation of snapping him, wherein my Lord Sandwich (40) will I doubt suffer some dishonour. I am told also of a great ryott upon Thursday last in Cheapside; Colonell Danvers, a delinquent, having been taken, and in his way to the Tower was rescued from the captain of the guard, and carried away; only one of the rescuers being taken. I am told also that the Duke of Buckingham (37) is dead, but I know not of a certainty.
So home and very late at letters, and then home to supper and to bed.

Read More ...

Great Plague of London

Diary of Samuel Pepys 22 August 1665. 22 Aug 1665. Up, and after much pleasant talke and being importuned by my wife and her two mayds, which are both good wenches, for me to buy a necklace of pearle for her, and I promising to give her one of £60 in two years at furthest, and in less if she pleases me in her painting, I went away and walked to Greenwich, in my way seeing a coffin with a dead body therein, dead of the plague, lying in an open close belonging to Coome farme, which was carried out last night, and the parish have not appointed any body to bury it; but only set a watch there day and night, that nobody should go thither or come thence, which is a most cruel thing: this disease making us more cruel to one another than if we are doggs.
So to the King's house, and there met my Lord Bruncker (45) and Sir J. Minnes (66), and to our lodgings again that are appointed for us, which do please me better to day than last night, and are set a doing.
Thence I to Deptford, where by appointment I find Mr. Andrews come, and to the Globe, where we dined together and did much business as to our Plymouth gentlemen; and after a good dinner and good discourse, he being a very good man, I think verily, we parted and I to the King's yard, walked up and down, and by and by out at the back gate, and there saw the Bagwell's wife's mother and daughter, and went to them, and went in to the daughter's house with the mother, and 'faciebam le cose que ego tenebam a mind to con elle', and drinking and talking, by and by away, and so walked to Redriffe, troubled to go through the little lane, where the plague is, but did and took water and home, where all well; but Mr. Andrews not coming to even accounts, as I expected, with relation to something of my own profit, I was vexed that I could not settle to business, but home to my viall, though in the evening he did come to my satisfaction. So after supper (he being gone first) I to settle my journall and to bed.
Note 1. I did whatever I had a mind to with her.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 29 August 1665. 29 Aug 1665. In the morning waking, among other discourse my wife begun to tell me the difference between her and Mercer, and that it was only from restraining her to gad abroad to some Frenchmen that were in the town, which I do not wholly yet in part believe, and for my quiet would not enquire into it. So rose and dressed myself, and away by land walking a good way, then remembered that I had promised Commissioner Pett (55) to go with him in his coach, and therefore I went back again to him, and so by his coach to Greenwich, and called at Sir Theophilus Biddulph's, a sober, discreet man, to discourse of the preventing of the plague in Greenwich, and Woolwich, and Deptford, where in every place it begins to grow very great. We appointed another meeting, and so walked together to Greenwich and there parted, and Pett and I to the office, where all the morning, and after office done I to Sir J. Minnes (66) and dined with him, and thence to Deptford thinking to have seen Bagwell, but did not, and so straight to Redriffe, and home, and late at my business to dispatch away letters, and then home to bed, which I did not intend, but to have staid for altogether at Woolwich, but I made a shift for a bed for Tom, whose bed is gone to Woolwich, and so to bed.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 18 December 1665. 18 Dec 1665. Betimes, up, it being a fine frost, and walked it to Redriffe, calling and drinking at Half-way house, thinking, indeed, to have overtaken some of the people of our house, the women, who were to walk the same walke, but I could not.
So to London, and there visited my wife, and was a little displeased to find she is so forward all of a spurt to make much of her brother and sister since my last kindnesse to him in getting him a place, but all ended well presently, and I to the 'Change and up and down to Kingdon and the goldsmith's to meet Mr. Stephens, and did get all my money matters most excellently cleared to my complete satisfaction. !Passing over Cornhill I spied young Mrs. Daniel and Sarah, my landlady's daughter, who are come, as I expected, to towne, and did say they spied me and I dogged them to St. Martin's, where I passed by them being shy, and walked down as low as Ducke Lane and enquired for some Spanish books, and so back again and they were gone.
So to the 'Change, hoping to see them in the streete, and missing them, went back again thither and back to the 'Change, but no sight of them, so went after my business again, and, though late, was sent to by Sir W. Warren (who heard where I was) to intreat me to come dine with him, hearing that I lacked a dinner, at the Pope's Head; and there with Mr. Hinton, the goldsmith, and others, very merry; but, Lord! to see how Dr. Hinton (61) come in with a gallant or two from Court, and do so call "Cozen" Mr. Hinton, the goldsmith, but I that know him to be a beggar and a knave, did make great sport in my mind at it1.
After dinner Sir W. Warren and I alone in another room a little while talking about business, and so parted, and I hence, my mind full of content in my day's worke, home by water to Greenwich, the river beginning to be very full of ice, so as I was a little frighted, but got home well, it being darke. So having no mind to do any business, went home to my lodgings, and there got little Mrs. Tooker, and Mrs. Daniel, the daughter, and Sarah to my chamber to cards and sup with me, when in comes Mr. Pierce to me, who tells me how W. Howe has been examined on shipboard by my Lord Bruncker (45) to-day, and others, and that he has charged him out of envy with sending goods under my Lord's seale and in my Lord Bruncker's (45) name, thereby to get them safe passage, which, he tells me, is false, but that he did use my name to that purpose, and hath acknowledged it to my Lord Bruncker (45), but do also confess to me that one parcel he thinks he did use my Lord Bruncker's (45) name, which do vexe me mightily that my name should be brought in question about such things, though I did not say much to him of my discontent till I have spoke with my Lord Bruncker (45) about it. So he being gone, being to go to Oxford to-morrow, we to cards again late, and so broke up, I having great pleasure with my little girle, Mrs. Tooker.
Note 1. John Hinton, M.D. (61), a strong royalist, who attended Henrietta Maria in her confinement at Exeter when she gave birth to the Princess Henrietta (21). He was knighted by Charles II, and appointed physician in ordinary to the King (35) and Queen (27). His knighthood was a reward for having procured a private advance of money from his kinsman, the goldsmith, to enable the Duke of Albemarle (57) to pay the army (see "Memorial to King Charles II (35). from Sir John Hinton, A.D. 1679", printed in Ellis's "Original Letters", 3rd series, vol. iv., p 296).

Read More ...

Great Plague of London

Diary of Samuel Pepys 27 December 1665. 27 Dec 1665. Up, and with Cocke (48), by coach to London, there home to my wife, and angry about her desiring a mayde yet, before the plague is quite over. It seems Mercer is troubled that she hath not one under her, but I will not venture my family by increasing it before it be safe.
Thence about many businesses, particularly with Sir W. Warren on the 'Change, and he and I dined together and settled our Tangier matters, wherein I get above £200 presently. We dined together at the Pope's Head to do this, and thence to the goldsmiths, I to examine the state of my matters there too, and so with him to my house, but my wife was gone abroad to Mrs. Mercer's, so we took boat, and it being darke and the thaw having broke the ice, but not carried it quite away, the boat did pass through so much of it all along, and that with the crackling and noise that it made me fearfull indeed. So I forced the watermen to land us on Redriffe side, and so walked together till Sir W. Warren and I parted near his house and thence I walked quite over the fields home by light of linke, one of my watermen carrying it, and I reading by the light of it, it being a very fine, clear, dry night.
So to Captain Cocke's (48), and there sat and talked, especially with his Counsellor, about his prize goods, that hath done him good turne, being of the company with Captain Fisher, his name Godderson; here I supped and so home to bed, with great content that the plague is decreased to 152, the whole being but 330.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 05 January 1666. 05 Jan 1666. I with my Lord Bruncker (46) and Mrs. Williams by coach with four horses to London, to my Lord's house in Covent-Guarden. But, Lord! what staring to see a nobleman's coach come to town. And porters every where bow to us; and such begging of beggars! And a delightfull thing it is to see the towne full of people again as now it is; and shops begin to open, though in many places seven or eight together, and more, all shut; but yet the towne is full, compared with what it used to be. I mean the City end; for Covent-Guarden and Westminster are yet very empty of people, no Court nor gentry being there. Set Mrs. Williams down at my Lord's house and he and I to Sir G. Carteret (56), at his chamber at White Hall, he being come to town last night to stay one day.
So my Lord and he and I much talke about the Act, what credit we find upon it, but no private talke between him and I So I to the 'Change, and there met Mr. Povy (52), newly come to town, and he and I to Sir George Smith's (51) and there dined nobly. He tells me how my Lord Bellases (51) complains for want of money and of him and me therein, but I value it not, for I know I do all that can be done. We had no time to talk of particulars, but leave it to another day, and I away to Cornhill to expect my Lord Bruncker's (46) coming back again, and I staid at my stationer's house, and by and by comes my Lord, and did take me up and so to Greenwich, and after sitting with them a while at their house, home, thinking to get Mrs. Knipp, but could not, she being busy with company, but sent me a pleasant letter, writing herself "Barbary Allen".
I went therefore to Mr. Boreman's for pastime, and there staid an houre or two talking with him, and reading a discourse about the River of Thames, the reason of its being choked up in several places with shelfes; which is plain is, by the encroachments made upon the River, and running out of causeways into the River at every wood-wharfe; which was not heretofore when Westminster Hall and White Hall were built, and Redriffe Church, which now are sometimes overflown with water. I had great satisfaction herein.
So home and to my papers for lacke of company, but by and by comes little Mrs. Tooker and sat and supped with me, and I kept her very late talking and making her comb my head, and did what I will with her. So late to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 09 March 1666. 09 Mar 1666. Up, and being ready, to the Cockpitt to make a visit to the Duke of Albemarle (57), and to my great joy find him the same man to me that [he has been] heretofore, which I was in great doubt of, through my negligence in not visiting of him a great while; and having now set all to rights there, I am in mighty ease in my mind and I think shall never suffer matters to run so far backward again as I have done of late, with reference to my neglecting him and Sir W. Coventry (38).
Thence by water down to Deptford, where I met my Lord Bruncker (46) and Sir W. Batten (65) by agreement, and to measuring Mr. Castle's (37) new third-rate ship, which is to be called the Defyance1. And here I had my end in saving the King (35) some money and getting myself some experience in knowing how they do measure ships.
Thence I left them and walked to Redriffe, and there taking water was overtaken by them in their boat, and so they would have me in with them to Castle's house, where my Lady Batten and Madam Williams were, and there dined and a deale of doings. I had a good dinner and counterfeit mirthe and pleasure with them, but had but little, thinking how I neglected my business. Anon, all home to Sir W. Batten's (65) and there Mrs. Knipp coming we did spend the evening together very merry. She and I singing, and, God forgive me! I do still see that my nature is not to be quite conquered, but will esteem pleasure above all things, though yet in the middle of it, it has reluctances after my business, which is neglected by my following my pleasure. However musique and women I cannot but give way to, whatever my business is. They being gone I to the office a while and so home to supper and to bed.
Note 1. William Castell wrote to the Navy Commissioners on February 17th, 1665-66, to inform them that the "Defiance" had gone to Longreach, and again, on February 22nd, to say that Mr. Grey had no masts large enough for the new ship. Sir William Batten (65) on March 29th asked for the consent of the Board to bring the "Defiance" into dock (" Calendar of State Papers", Domestic, 1665-66, pp. 252, 262, 324).

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 29 April 1666. 29 Apr 1666. Lord's Day. Up, and to church, where Mr. Mills, a lazy, simple sermon upon the Devil's having no right to any thing in this world.
So home to dinner, and after dinner I and my boy down by water to Redriffe and thence walked to Mr. Evelyn's (45), where I walked in his garden till he come from Church, with great pleasure reading Ridly's discourse, all my way going and coming, upon the Civill and Ecclesiastical Law. He being come home, he and I walked together in the garden with mighty pleasure, he being a very ingenious man; and the more I know him, the more I love him. His chief business with me was to propose having my cozen Thomas Pepys in Commission of the Peace, which I do not know what to say to till I speake with him, but should be glad of it and will put him upon it.
Thence walked back again reading and so took water and home, where I find my uncle (71) and aunt Wight (47), and supped with them upon my leads with mighty pleasure and mirthe, and they being gone I mighty weary to bed, after having my haire of my head cut shorter, even close to my skull, for coolnesse, it being mighty hot weather.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 May 1666. 01 May 1666. Up, and all the morning at the office.
At noon, my cozen Thomas Pepys did come to me, to consult about the business of his being a justice of the Peace, which he is much against; and among other reasons, tells me, as a confidant, that he is not free to exercise punishment according to the Act against Quakers and other people, for religion. Nor do he understand Latin, and so is not capable of the place as formerly, now all warrants do run in Latin. Nor is he in Kent, though he be of Deptford parish, his house standing in Surry. However, I did bring him to incline towards it, if he be pressed to take it. I do think it may be some repute to me to have my kinsman in Commission there, specially if he behave himself to content in the country.
He gone and my wife gone abroad, I out also to and fro, to see and be seen, among others to find out in Thames Streete where Betty Howlettt is come to live, being married to Mrs. Michell's son; which I did about the Old Swan, but did not think fit to go thither or see them.
Thence by water to Redriffe, reading a new French book my Lord Bruncker (46) did give me to-day, "L'Histoire Amoureuse des Gaules",1 being a pretty libel against the amours of the Court of France. I walked up and down Deptford yarde, where I had not been since I come from living at Greenwich, which is some months. There I met with Mr. Castle (37), and was forced against my will to have his company back with me. So we walked and drank at Halfway house and so to his house, where I drank a cupp of syder, and so home, where I find Mr. Norbury newly come to town to see us.
After he gone my wife tells me the ill newes that our Susan is sicke and gone to bed, with great pain in her head and back, which troubles us all. However we to bed expecting what to-morrow would produce. She hath we conceive wrought a little too much, having neither maid nor girle to help her.
Note 1. This book, which has frequently been reprinted, was written by Roger de Rabutin, Comte de Bussy, for the amusement of his mistress, Madame de Montglas, and consists of sketches of the chief ladies of the court, in which he libelled friends and foes alike. These circulated in manuscript, and were printed at Liege in 1665. Louis XIV. was so much annoyed with the book that he sent the author to the Bastille for over a year.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 28 May 1666. 28 May 1666. Up and to my chamber to do some business there, and then to the office, where a while, and then by agreement to the Excise Office, where I waited all the morning for the Cofferer and Sir St. Foxe's (39) coming, but they did not, so I and the Commissioners lost their labour and expectation of doing the business we intended.
Thence home, where I find Mr. Lovett and his wife came to see us. They are a pretty couple, and she a fine bred woman. They dined with us, and Browne, the paynter, and she plays finely on the lute. My wife and I were well pleased with her company.
After dinner broke up, I to the office and they abroad. All the afternoon I busy at the office, and down by water to Deptford. Walked back to Redriffe, and so home to the office again, being thoughtfull how to answer Sir W. Coventry (38) against to-morrow in the business of the Victualling, but that I do trust to Tom Wilson, that he will be ready with a book for me to-morrow morning.
So to bed, my wife telling me where she hath been to-day with my aunt Wight (47), and seen Mrs. Margaret Wight, and says that she is one of the beautifullest women that ever she saw in her life, the most excellent nose and mouth. They have been also to see pretty Mrs. Batelier, and conclude her to be a prettier woman than Mrs. Pierce, whom my wife led my aunt to see also this day.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 23 June 1666. 23 Jun 1666. My father and sister very betimes took their leave; and my wife, with all possible kindnesse, went with them to the coach, I being mightily pleased with their company thus long, and my father with his being here, and it rejoices my heart that I am in condition to do any thing to comfort him, and could, were it not for my mother, have been contented he should have stayed always here with me, he is such innocent company.
They being gone, I to my papers, but vexed at what I heard but a little of this morning, before my wife went out, that Mercer and she fell out last night, and that the girle is gone home to her mother's for all-together: This troubles me, though perhaps it may be an ease to me of so much charge. But I love the girle, and another we must be forced to keepe I do foresee and then shall be sorry to part with her. At the office all the morning, much disquiett in my mind in the middle of my business about this girle.
Home at noon to dinner, and what with the going away of my father today and the losse of Mercer, I after dinner went up to my chamber and there could have cried to myself, had not people come to me about business.
In the evening down to Tower Wharfee thinking to go by water, but could not get watermen; they being now so scarce, by reason of the great presse; so to the Custome House, and there, with great threats, got a couple to carry me down to Deptford, all the way reading Pompey the Great (a play translated from the French by several noble persons; among others, my Lord Buckhurst (23)), that to me is but a mean play, and the words and sense not very extraordinary.
From Deptford I walked to Redriffe, and in my way was overtaken by Bagwell, lately come from sea in the Providence, who did give me an account of several particulars in the late fight, and how his ship was deserted basely by the York, Captain Swanly, commander.
So I home and there after writing my letters home to supper and to bed, fully resolved to rise betimes, and go down the river to-morrow morning, being vexed this night to find none of the officers in the yarde at 7 at night, nor any body concerned as if it were a Dutch warr. It seems Mercer's mother was here in the morning to speak with my wife, but my wife would not.
In the afternoon I and my wife in writing did instruct W. Hewer (24) in some discourse to her, and she in the evening did come and satisfy my wife, and by and by Mercer did come, which I was mighty glad of and eased of much pain about her.

Read More ...

Holme's Bonfire

Diary of Samuel Pepys 15 August 1666. 15 Aug 1666. Mighty sleepy; slept till past eight of the clock, and was called up by a letter from Sir W. Coventry (38), which, among other things, tells me how we have burned one hundred and sixty ships of the enemy within the Fly1. I up, and with all possible haste, and in pain for fear of coming late, it being our day of attending the Duke of Yorke (32), to St. James's, where they are full of the particulars; how they are generally good merchant ships, some of them laden and supposed rich ships. We spent five fire-ships upon them. We landed on the Schelling (Sir Philip Howard (35) with some men, and Holmes (44), I think; with others, about 1000 in all), and burned a town; and so come away.
By and by the Duke of Yorke (32) with his books showed us the very place and manner, and that it was not our design or expectation to have done this, but only to have landed on the Fly, and burned some of their store; but being come in, we spied those ships, and with our long boats, one by one, fired them, our ships running all aground, it being so shoal water. We were led to this by, it seems, a renegado captain of the Hollanders, who found himself ill used by De Ruyter (59) for his good service, and so come over to us, and hath done us good service; so that now we trust him, and he himself did go on this expedition. The service is very great, and our joys as great for it. All this will make the Duke of Albemarle (57) in repute again, I doubt, though there is nothing of his in this. But, Lord! to see what successe do, whether with or without reason, and making a man seem wise, notwithstanding never so late demonstration of the profoundest folly in the world.
Thence walked over the Parke with Sir W. Coventry (38), in our way talking of the unhappy state of our office; and I took an opportunity to let him know, that though the backwardnesses of all our matters of the office may be well imputed to the known want of money, yet, perhaps, there might be personal and particular failings; and that I did, therefore, depend still upon his promise of telling me whenever he finds any ground to believe any defect or neglect on my part, which he promised me still to do; and that there was none he saw, nor, indeed, says he, is there room now-a-days to find fault with any particular man, while we are in this condition for money. This, methought, did not so well please me; but, however, I am glad I have said this, thereby giving myself good grounds to believe that at this time he did not want an occasion to have said what he pleased to me, if he had had anything in his mind, which by his late distance and silence I have feared. But then again I am to consider he is grown a very great man, much greater than he was, and so must keep more distance; and, next, that the condition of our office will not afford me occasion of shewing myself so active and deserving as heretofore; and, lastly, the muchness of his business cannot suffer him to mind it, or give him leisure to reflect on anything, or shew the freedom and kindnesse that he used to do. But I think I have done something considerable to my satisfaction in doing this; and that if I do but my duty remarkably from this time forward, and not neglect it, as I have of late done, and minded my pleasures, I may be as well as ever I was.
Thence to the Exchequer, but did nothing, they being all gone from their offices; and so to the Old Exchange, where the towne full of the good newes, but I did not stay to tell or hear any, but home, my head akeing and drowsy, and to dinner, and then lay down upon the couch, thinking to get a little rest, but could not. So down the river, reading "The Adventures of Five Hours", which the more I read the more I admire. So down below Greenwich, but the wind and tide being against us, I back again to Deptford, and did a little business there, and thence walked to Redriffe; and so home, and to the office a while.
In the evening comes W. Batelier and his sister, and my wife, and fair Mrs. Turner (43) into the garden, and there we walked, and then with my Lady Pen (42) and Pegg (15) in a-doors, and eat and were merry, and so pretty late broke up, and to bed. The guns of the Tower going off, and there being bonefires also in the street for this late good successe.
Note 1. On the 8th August the Duke of Albemarle (57) reported to Lord Arlington (48) that he had "sent 1000 good men under Sir R. Holmes (44) and Sir William Jennings to destroy the islands of Vlie and Schelling". On the 10th James Hayes wrote to Williamson: "On the 9th at noon smoke was seen rising from several places in the island of Vlie, and the 10th brought news that Sir Robert had burned in the enemy's harbour 160 outward bound valuable merchant men and three men-of-war, and taken a little pleasure boat and eight guns in four hours. The loss is computed at a million sterling, and will make great confusion when the people see themselves in the power of the English at their very doors. Sir Robert then landed his forces, and is burning the houses in Vlie and Schelling as bonfires for his good success at sea" (Calendar of State Papers, 1666-67, pp. 21,27).

Read More ...

Poll Bill

Diary of Samuel Pepys 21 January 1667. 21 Jan 1667. Up betimes, and with, Sir W. Batten (66), Sir W. Pen (45), Sir R. Ford (53), by coach to the Swede's Resident's in the Piatza, to discourse with him about two of our prizes, wherein he puts in his concernment as for his countrymen. We had no satisfaction, nor did give him any, but I find him a cunning fellow. He lives in one of the great houses there, but ill-furnished; and come to us out of bed in his furred mittens and furred cap.
Thence to Exeter House to the Doctors Commons, and there with our Proctors to Dr. Walker, who was not very well, but, however, did hear our matters, and after a dull seeming hearing of them read, did discourse most understandingly of them, as well as ever I heard man, telling us all our grounds of pretence to the prize would do no good, and made it appear but thus, and thus, it may be, but yet did give us but little reason to expect it would prove, which troubled us, but I was mightily taken to hear his manner of discourse.
Thence with them to Westminster Hall, they setting me down at White Hall, where I missed of finding Sir G. Carteret (57), up to the Lords' House, and there come mighty seasonably to hear the Solicitor about my Lord Buckingham's (38) pretence to the title of Lord Rosse. Mr. Atturny Montagu (49) is also a good man, and so is old Sir P. Ball; but the Solicitor and Scroggs after him are excellent men.
Here spoke with my Lord Bellasses (52) about getting some money for Tangier, which he doubts we shall not be able to do out of the Poll Bill, it being so strictly tied for the Navy. He tells me the Lords have passed the Bill for the accounts with some little amendments.
So down to the Hall, and thence with our company to Exeter House, and then did the business I have said before, we doing nothing the first time of going, it being too early. At home find Lovett, to whom I did give my Baroness Castlemayne's (26) head to do. He is talking of going into Spayne to get money by his art, but I doubt he will do no good, he being a man of an unsettled head.
Thence by water down to Deptford, the first time I have been by water a great while, and there did some little business and walked home, and there come into my company three drunken seamen, but one especially, who told me such stories, calling me Captain, as made me mighty merry, and they would leap and skip, and kiss what mayds they met all the way. I did at first give them money to drink, lest they should know who I was, and so become troublesome to me.
Parted at Redriffe, and there home and to the office, where did much business, and then to Sir W. Batten's (66), where Sir W. Pen (45), Sir R. Ford (53), and I to hear a proposition Sir R. Ford (53) was to acquaint us with from the Swedes Embassador, in manner of saying, that for money he might be got to our side and relinquish the trouble he may give us. Sir W. Pen (45) did make a long simple declaration of his resolution to give nothing to deceive any poor man of what was his right by law, but ended in doing whatever any body else would, and we did commission Sir R. Ford (53) to give promise of not beyond £350 to him and his Secretary, in case they did not oppose us in the Phoenix (the net profits of which, as Sir R. Ford (53) cast up before us, the Admiral's tenths, and ship's thirds, and other charges all cleared, will amount to £3,000) and that we did gain her. Sir R. Ford (53) did pray for a curse upon his family, if he was privy to anything more than he told us (which I believe he is a knave in), yet we all concluded him the most fit man for it and very honest, and so left it wholly to him to manage as he pleased.
Thence to the office a little while longer, and so home, where W. Hewer's (25) mother was, and Mrs. Turner (44), our neighbour, and supped with us. His mother a well-favoured old little woman, and a good woman, I believe. After we had supped, and merry, we parted late, Mrs. Turner (44) having staid behind to talk a little about her lodgings, which now my Lord Bruncker (47) upon Sir W. Coventry's (39) surrendering do claim, but I cannot think he will come to live in them so as to need to put them out.
She gone, we to bed all. This night, at supper, comes from Sir W. Coventry (39) the Order of Councill for my Lord Bruncker (47) to do all the Comptroller's (56) part relating to the Treasurer's accounts, and Sir W. Pen (45), all relating to the Victualler's, and Sir J. Minnes (67) to do the rest. This, I hope, will do much better for the King (36) than now, and, I think, will give neither of them ground to over-top me, as I feared they would; which pleases me mightily. This evening, Mr. Wren and Captain Cocke (50) called upon me at the office, and there told me how the House was in better temper to-day, and hath passed the Bill for the remainder of the money, but not to be passed finally till they have done some other things which they will have passed with it; wherein they are very open, what their meaning is, which was but doubted before, for they do in all respects doubt the King's pleasing them.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 February 1667. 01 Feb 1667. Up, and to the office, where I was all the morning doing business, at noon home to dinner, and after dinner down by water, though it was a thick misty and rainy day, and walked to Deptford from Redriffe, and there to Bagwell's by appointment, where the 'mulier etoit within expecting me venir [Note. 'woman was within expecting me to come'].... By and by 'su marido' [Note. her husband] come in, and there without any notice taken by him we discoursed of our business of getting him the new ship building by Deane (33), which I shall do for him.
Thence by and by after a little talk I to the yard, and spoke with some of the officers, but staid but little, and the new clerk of the 'Chequer, Fownes, did walk to Redriffe back with me. I perceive he is a very child, and is led by the nose by Cowly and his kinsman that was his clerk, but I did make him understand his duty, and put both understanding and spirit into him, so that I hope he will do well1. (The passage between brackets is written in the margin of the MS.)
Thence by water to Billingsgate; thence to the Old Swan, and there took boat, it being now night, to Westminster Hall, there to the Hall, and find Doll Lane, and 'con elle' [Note. 'with her'] I went to the Bell Tavern, and 'ibi je' did do what I would 'con elle' [Note. 'with her'] as well as I could, she 'sedendo sobre' [Note. 'giving way'] thus far and making some little resistance. But all with much content, and 'je tenai' [Note. 'I had'] much pleasure 'cum ista' [Note. 'with her'].
There parted, and I by coach home, and to the office, where pretty late doing business, and then home, and merry with my wife, and to supper. My brother and I did play with the base, and I upon my viallin, which I have not seen out of the case now I think these three years, or more, having lost the key, and now forced to find an expedient to open it. Then to bed.
Note 1. Much surprised to hear this day at Deptford that Mrs. Batters is going already to be married to him, that is now the Captain of her husband's ship. She seemed the most passionate mourner in the world. But I believe it cannot be true.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 27 February 1667. 27 Feb 1667. Up by candle-light, about six o'clock, it being bitter cold weather again, after all our warm weather, and by water down to Woolwich Rope-yard, I being this day at a leisure, the King (36) and Duke of York (33) being gone down to Sheerenesse this morning to lay out the design for a fortification there to the river Medway; and so we do not attend the Duke of York (33) as we should otherwise have done, and there to the Dock Yard to enquire of the state of things, and went into Mr. Pett's (56); and there, beyond expectation, he did present me with a Japan cane, with a silver head, and his wife sent me by him a ring, with a Woolwich stone1 now much in request; which I accepted, the values not being great, and knowing that I had done them courtesies, which he did own in very high terms; and then, at my asking, did give me an old draught of an ancient-built ship, given him by his father, of the Beare, in Queen Elizabeth's time. This did much please me, it being a thing I much desired to have, to shew the difference in the build of ships now and heretofore.
Being much taken with this kindness, I away to Blackwall and Deptford, to satisfy myself there about the King's business, and then walked to Redriffe, and so home about noon; there find Mr. Hunt, newly come out of the country, who tells me the country is much impoverished by the greatness of taxes: the farmers do break every day almost, and £1000 a-year become not worth £500. He dined with us, and we had good discourse of the general ill state of things, and, by the way, he told me some ridiculous pieces of thrift of Sir G. Downing's (42), who is his countryman, in inviting some poor people, at Christmas last, to charm the country people's mouths; but did give them nothing but beef, porridge, pudding, and pork, and nothing said all dinner, but only his mother would say, "It's good broth, son". He would answer, "Yes, it is good broth". Then, says his lady, Confirm all, and say, "Yes, very good broth". By and by she would begin and say, "Good pork:"—"Yes", says the mother, "good pork". Then he cries, "Yes, very good pork". And so they said of all things; to which nobody made any answer, they going there not out of love or esteem of them, but to eat his victuals, knowing him to be a niggardly fellow; and with this he is jeered now all over the country.
This day just before dinner comes Captain Story, of Cambridge, to me to the office, about a bill for prest money2, for men sent out of the country and the countries about him to the fleete the last year; but, Lord! to see the natures of men; how this man, hearing of my name, did ask me of my country, and told me of my cozen Roger (49), that he was not so wise a man as his father (84); for that he do not agree in Parliament with his fellow burgesses and knights of the shire, whereas I know very well the reason; for he is not so high a flyer as Mr. Chichley (52) and others, but loves the King (36) better than any of them, and to better purpose. But yet, he says that he is a very honest gentleman, and thence runs into a hundred stories of his own services to the King (36), and how he at this day brings in the taxes before anybody here thinks they are collected: discourse very absurd to entertain a stranger with. He being gone, and I glad of it, I home then to dinner.
After dinner with my wife by coach abroad, and set Mr. Hunt down at the Temple and her at her brother's (27), and I to White Hall to meet Sir W. Coventry (39), but found him not, but met Mr. Cooling, who tells me of my Lord Duke of Buckingham's (39) being sent for last night, by a Serjeant at Armes, to the Tower, for treasonable practices, and that the King (36) is infinitely angry with him, and declared him no longer one of his Council. I know not the reason of it, or occasion.
To Westminster Hall, and there paid what I owed for books, and so by coach, took up my wife to the Exchange, and there bought things for Mrs. Pierce's little daughter, my Valentine, and so to their house, where we find Knipp, who also challengeth me for her Valentine. She looks well, sang well, and very merry we were for half an hour. Tells me Harris (33) is well again, having been very ill, and so we home, and I to the office; then, at night, to Sir W. Pen's (45), and sat with my Lady, and the young couple (Sir William out of town) talking merrily; but they make a very sorry couple, methinks, though rich. So late home and to bed.
Note 1. Woolwich stones, still collected in that locality, are simply waterworn pebbles of flint, which, when broken with a hammer, exhibit on the smooth surface some resemblance to the human face; and their possessors are thus enabled to trace likenesses of friends, or eminent public characters. The late Mr. Tennant, the geologist, of the Strand, had a collection of such stones. In the British Museum is a nodule of globular or Egyptian jasper, which, in its fracture, bears a striking resemblance to the well-known portrait of Chaucer. It is engraved in Rymsdyk's "Museum Britannicum", tab. xxviii. A flint, showing Mr. Pitt's face, used once to be exhibited at the meetings of the Pitt Club. B.
Note 2. Money paid to men who enlist into the public service; press money. So called because those who receive it are to be prest or ready when called on ("Encyclopaedic Dictionary ").

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 04 March 1667. 04 Mar 1667. Up, and with Sir J. Minnes (68) and Sir W. Batten (66) by barge to Deptford by eight in the morning, where to the King's yard a little to look after business there, and then to a private storehouse to look upon some cordage of Sir W. Batten's (66), and there being a hole formerly made for a drain for tarr to run into, wherein the barrel stood still, full of stinking water, Sir W. Batten (66) did fall with one leg into it, which might have been very bad to him by breaking a leg or other hurt, but, thanks be to God, he only sprained his foot a little. So after his shifting his stockings at a strong water shop close by, we took barge again, and so to Woolwich, where our business was chiefly to look upon the ballast wharfe there, which is offered us for the King's use to hire, but we do not think it worth the laying out much money upon, unless we could buy the fee-simple of it, which cannot be sold us, so we wholly flung it off: So to the Dockyard, and there staid a while talking about business of the yard, and thence to the Rope-yard, and so to the White Hart and there dined, and Captain Cocke (50) with us, whom we found at the Rope-yard, and very merry at dinner, and many pretty tales of Sir J. Minnes (68), which I have entered in my tale book. But by this time Sir W. Batten (66) was come to be in much pain in his foot, so as he was forced to be carried down in a chair to the barge again, and so away to Deptford, and there I a little in the yard, and then to Bagwell's (30), where I find his wife washing, and also I did 'hazer tout que je voudrais con' [Note. have all that I wanted with] her, and then sent for her husband (30), and discoursed of his going to Harwich this week to his charge of the new ship building there, which I have got him, and so away, walked to Redriffe, and there took boat and away home, and upon Tower Hill, near the ticket office, meeting with my old acquaintance Mr. Chaplin (40), the cheesemonger, and there fell to talk of news, and he tells me that for certain the King of France (28) is denied passage with his army through Flanders, and that he hears that the Dutch do stand upon high terms with us, and will have a promise of not being obliged to strike the flag to us before they will treat with us, and other high things, which I am ashamed of and do hope will never be yielded to. That they do make all imaginable preparations, but that he believes they will be in mighty want of men; that the King of France (28) do court us mightily. He tells me too that our Lord-Treasurer is going to lay down, and that Lord Arlington (49) is to be Lord Treasurer, but I believe nothing of it, for he is not yet of estate visible enough to have the charge I suppose upon him.
So being parted from him I home to the office, and after having done business there I home to supper, and there mightily pleased with my wife's beginning the flagellette, believing that she will come to very well thereon. This day in the barge I took Berckenshaw's translation of Alsted his Templum, but the most ridiculous book, as he has translated it, that ever I saw in my life, I declaring that I understood not three lines together from one end of the book to the other.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 06 March 1667. 06 Mar 1667. Up, and with Sir W. Pen (45) to White Hall by coach, and by the way agreed to acquaint Sir W. Coventry (39) with the business of Mr. Carcasse, and he and I spoke to Sir W. Coventry (39) that we might move it to the Duke of York (33), which I did in a very indifferent, that is, impartial manner, but vexed I believe Lord Bruncker (47). Here the Duke of York (33) did acquaint us, and the King (36) did the like also, afterwards coming in, with his resolution of altering the manner of the war this year; that is, we shall keep what fleete we have abroad in several squadrons: so that now all is come out; but we are to keep it as close as we can, without hindering the work that is to be done in preparation to this. Great preparations there are to fortify Sheernesse and the yard at Portsmouth, and forces are drawing down to both those places, and elsewhere by the seaside; so that we have some fear of an invasion; and the Duke of York (33) himself did declare his expectation of the enemy's blocking us up here in the River, and therefore directed that we should send away all the ships that we have to fit out hence. Sir W. Pen (45) told me, going with me this morning to White Hall, that for certain the Duke of Buckingham (39) is brought into the Tower, and that he hath had an hour's private conference with the King (36) before he was sent thither. To Westminster Hall. There bought some news books, and, as every where else, hear every body complain of the dearness of coals, being at £4 per chaldron, the weather, too, being become most bitter cold, the King (36) saying to-day that it was the coldest day he ever knew in England.
Thence by coach to my Lord Crew's (69), where very welcome. Here I find they are in doubt where the Duke of Buckingham (39) is; which makes me mightily reflect on the uncertainty of all history, when, in a business of this moment, and of this day's growth, we cannot tell the truth. Here dined my old acquaintance, Mr. Borfett, that was my Lord Sandwich's (41) chaplain, and my Lady Wright and Dr. Boreman, who is preacher at St. Gyles's in the Fields, who, after dinner, did give my Lord an account of two papist women lately converted, whereof one wrote her recantation, which he shewed under her own hand mighty well drawn, so as my Lord desired a copy of it, after he had satisfied himself from the Doctor, that to his knowledge she was not a woman under any necessity.
Thence by coach home and staid a very little, and then by water to Redriffe, and walked to Bagwell's, where 'la moher' was 'defro, sed' would not have me 'demeurer' there 'parce que' Mrs. Batters and one of my 'ancillas', I believe Jane (for she was gone abroad to-day), was in the town, and coming thither; so I away presently, esteeming it a great escape.
So to the yard and spoke a word or two, and then by water home, wondrous cold, and reading a ridiculous ballad made in praise of the Duke of Albemarle (58), to the tune of St. George, the tune being printed, too; and I observe that people have some great encouragement to make ballads of him of this kind. There are so many, that hereafter he will sound like Guy of Warwicke.
Then abroad with my wife, leaving her at the 'Change, while I to Sir H. Cholmly's (34), a pretty house, and a fine, worthy, well-disposed gentleman he is. He and I to Sir Ph. Warwicke's (57), about money for Tangier, but to little purpose. H. Cholmley (34) tells me, among other things, that he hears of little hopes of a peace, their demands being so high as we shall never grant, and could tell me that we shall keep no fleete abroad this year, but only squadrons. And, among other things, that my Lord Bellasses (52), he believes, will lose his command of Tangier by his corrupt covetous ways of.endeavouring to sell his command, which I am glad [of], for he is a man of no worth in the world but compliment.
So to the 'Change, and there bought 32s. worth of things for Mrs. Knipp, my Valentine, which is pretty to see how my wife is come to convention with me, that, whatever I do give to anybody else, I shall give her as much, which I am not much displeased with.
So home and to the office and Sir W. Batten (66), to tell him what I had done to-day about Carcasse's business, and God forgive me I am not without design to give a blow to Sir W. Batten (66) by it.
So home, where Mr. Batelier supped with us and talked away the evening pretty late, and so he gone and we to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 April 1667. 01 Apr 1667. Up, and with Sir J. Minnes (68) in his coach, set him down at the Treasurer's Office in Broad-streete, and I in his coach to White Hall, and there had the good fortune to walk with Sir W. Coventry (39) into the garden, and there read our melancholy letter to the Duke of York (33), which he likes. And so to talk: and he flatly owns that we must have a peace, for we cannot set out a fleete; and, to use his own words, he fears that we shall soon have enough of fighting in this new way, which we have thought on for this year. He bemoans the want of money, and discovers himself jealous that Sir G. Carteret (57) do not look after, or concern himself for getting, money as he used to do, and did say it is true if Sir G. Carteret (57) would only do his work, and my Lord Treasurer (60) would do his own, Sir G. Carteret (57) hath nothing to do to look after money, but if he will undertake my Lord Treasurer's (60) work to raise money of the Bankers, then people must expect that he will do it, and did further say, that he [Carteret] and my Chancellor (58) do at this very day labour all they can to villify this new way of raising money, and making it payable, as it now is, into the Exchequer; and expressly said that in pursuance hereof, my Chancellor (58) hath prevailed with the King (36), in the close of his last speech to the House, to say, that he did hope to see them come to give money as it used to be given, without so many provisos, meaning, as Sir W. Coventry (39) says, this new method of the Act.
While we were talking, there come Sir Thomas Allen (34) with two ladies; one of which was Mrs. Rebecca Allen (23), that I knew heretofore, the clerk of the Rope-yard's (37) daughter at Chatham, who, poor heart! come to desire favour for her husband, who is clapt up, being a Lieutenant [Jowles] (27), for sending a challenge to his Captain, in the most saucy, base language that could be writ. I perceive Sir W. Coventry (39) is wholly resolved to bring him to punishment; for, "bear with this", says he, "and no discipline shall ever be expected". She in this sad condition took no notice of me, nor I of her.
So away we to the Duke of York (33), and there in his closett Sir W. Coventry (39) and I delivered the letter, which the Duke of York (33) made not much of, I thought, as to laying it to heart, as the matter deserved, but did promise to look after the getting of money for us, and I believe Sir W. Coventry (39) will add what force he can to it. I did speak to Sir W. Coventry (39) about Balty's (27) warrant, which is ready, and about being Deputy Treasurer, which he very readily and friendlily agreed to, at which I was glad, and so away and by coach back to Broad-streete to Sir G. Carteret's (57), and there found my brother passing his accounts, which I helped till dinner, and dined there, and many good stories at dinner, among others about discoveries of murder, and Sir J. Minnes (68) did tell of the discovery of his own great-grandfather's murder, fifteen years after he was murdered.
Thence, after dinner, home and by water to Redriffe, and walked (fine weather) to Deptford, and there did business and so back again, walked, and pleased with a jolly femme that I saw going and coming in the way, which je could avoir been contented pour avoir staid with if I could have gained acquaintance con elle, but at such times as these I am at a great loss, having not confidence, no alcune ready wit.
So home and to the office, where late, and then home to supper and bed. This evening Mrs. Turner (44) come to my office, and did walk an hour with me in the garden, telling me stories how Sir Edward Spragge (47) hath lately made love to our neighbour, a widow, Mrs. Hollworthy, who is a woman of estate, and wit and spirit, and do contemn him the most, and sent him away with the greatest scorn in the world; she tells me also odd stories how the parish talks of Sir W. Pen's (45) family, how poorly they clothe their daughter (16) so soon after marriage, and do say that Mr. Lowther (26) was married once before, and some such thing there hath been, whatever the bottom of it is. But to think of the clatter they make with his coach, and his owne fine cloathes, and yet how meanly they live within doors, and nastily, and borrowing everything of neighbours is a most shitten thing.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 12 April 1667. 12 Apr 1667. Up, and when ready, and to my office, to do a little business, and, coming homeward again, saw my door and hatch open, left so by Luce, our cookmayde, which so vexed me, that I did give her a kick in our entry, and offered a blow at her, and was seen doing so by Sir W. Pen's (45) footboy, which did vex me to the heart, because I know he will be telling their family of it; though I did put on presently a very pleasant face to the boy, and spoke kindly to him, as one without passion, so as it may be he might not think I was angry, but yet I was troubled at it.
So away by water to White Hall, and there did our usual business before the Duke of York (33); but it fell out that, discoursing of matters of money, it rose to a mighty heat, very high words arising between Sir G. Carteret (57) and Sir W. Coventry (39), the former in his passion saying that the other should have helped things if they were so bad; and the other answered, so he would, and things should have been better had he been Treasurer of the Navy. I was mightily troubled at this heat, and it will breed ill blood, I fear; but things are in that bad condition that I do daily expect when we shall all fly in one another's faces, when we shall be reduced, every one, to answer for himself.
We broke up; and I soon after to Sir G. Carteret's (57) chamber, where I find the poor man telling his lady (65) privately, and she weeping. I went into them, and did seem, as indeed I was, troubled for this; and did give the best advice I could, which, I think, did please them: and they do apprehend me their friend, as indeed I am, for I do take the Vice-chamberlain for a most honest man. He did assure me that he was not, all expences and things paid, clear in estate £15,000 better than he was when the King (36) come in; and that the King (36) and Chancellor (58) did know that he was worth, with the debt the King (36) owed him, £50,000, I think, he said, when the King (36) come into England.
I did pacify all I could, and then away by water home, there to write letters and things for the dispatch of Balty (27) away this day to sea; and after dinner he did go, I having given him much good counsell; and I have great hopes that he will make good use of it, and be a good man, for I find him willing to take pains and very sober.
He being gone, I close at my office all the afternoon getting off of hand my papers, which, by the late holidays and my laziness, were grown too many upon my hands, to my great trouble, and therefore at it as late as my eyes would give me leave, and then by water down to Redriffe, meaning to meet my wife, who is gone with Mercer, Barker, and the boy (it being most sweet weather) to walk, and I did meet with them, and walked back, and then by the time we got home it was dark, and we staid singing in the garden till supper was ready, and there with great pleasure. But I tried my girles Mercer and Barker singly one after another, a single song, "At dead low ebb", etc., and I do clearly find that as to manner of singing the latter do much the better, the other thinking herself as I do myself above taking pains for a manner of singing, contenting ourselves with the judgment and goodness of eare.
So to supper, and then parted and to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 28 April 1667. 28 Apr 1667. Lord's Day. Lay long, my pain in my back being still great, though not so great as it was. However, up and to church, where a lazy sermon, and then home and to dinner, my wife and I alone and Barker.
After dinner, by water—the day being mighty pleasant, and the tide serving finely, I up (reading in Boyle's book of colours), as high as Barne Elmes, and there took one turn alone, and then back to Putney Church, where I saw the girls of the schools, few of which pretty; and there I come into a pew, and met with little James Pierce, which I was much pleased at, the little rogue being very glad to see me: his master, Reader to the Church. Here was a good sermon and much company, but I sleepy, and a little out of order, for my hat falling down through a hole underneath the pulpit, which, however, after sermon, by a stick, and the helpe of the clerke, I got up again, and then walked out of the church with the boy, and then left him, promising him to get him a play another time.
And so by water, the tide being with me again, down to Deptford, and there I walked down the Yard, Shish (62) and Cox with me, and discoursed about cleaning of the wet docke, and heard, which I had before, how, when the docke was made, a ship of near 500 tons was there found; a ship supposed of Queene Elizabeth's time, and well wrought, with a great deal of stoneshot in her, of eighteen inches diameter, which was shot then in use: and afterwards meeting with Captain Perriman and Mr. Castle (38) at Half-way Tree, they tell me of stoneshot of thirty-six inches diameter, which they shot out of mortarpieces.
Thence walked to Half-way Tree, and there stopt and talk with Mr. Castle (38) and Captain Perriman, and so to Redriffe and took boat again, and so home, and there to write down my Journall, and so to supper and to read, and so to bed, mightily pleased with my reading of Boyle's book of colours to-day, only troubled that some part of it, indeed the greatest part, I am not able to understand for want of study. My wife this night troubled at my leaving her alone so much and keeping her within doors, which indeed I do not well nor wisely in.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 07 July 1667. 07 Jul 1667. Lord's Day. Up, and to my chamber, there to settle some papers, and thither comes Mr. Moore to me and talked till church time of the news of the times about the peace and the bad consequences of it if it be not improved to good purpose of fitting ourselves for another war. He tells me he heard that the discontented Parliament-men are fearful that the next sitting the King (37) will put for a general excise, by which to raise him money, and then to fling off the Parliament, and raise a land-army and keep them all down like slaves; and it is gotten among them, that Bab. May (39), the Privy-purse, hath been heard to say that £300 a-year is enough for any country gentleman; which makes them mad, and they do talk of 6 or £800,000 gone into the Privy-purse this war, when in King James's time it arose but to £5,000, and in King Charles's but £10,000 in a year. He tells me that a goldsmith in town told him that, being with some plate with my Baroness Castlemayne (26) lately, she directed her woman (the great beauty), "Wilson", says she, "make a note for this, and for that, to the Privy-purse for money". He tells me a little more of the baseness of the courses taken at Court in the case of Mr. Moyer, who is at liberty, and is to give £500 for his liberty; but now the great ones are divided, who shall have the money, the Duke of Albemarle (58) on one hand, and another Lord on the other; and that it is fain to be decided by having the person's name put into the King's warrant for his liberty, at whose intercession the King (37) shall own that he is set at liberty; which is a most lamentable thing, that we do professedly own that we do these things, not for right and justice sake, but only to gratify this or that person about the King (37). God forgive us all!
Busy till noon, and then home to dinner, and Mr. Moore come and dined with us, and much more discourse at and after dinner of the same kind, and then, he gone, I to my office busy till the evening, and then with my wife and Jane over to Half-way house, a very good walk; and there drank, and in the cool of the evening back again, and sang with pleasure upon the water, and were mightily pleased in hearing a boatfull of Spaniards sing, and so home to supper and to bed. Jane of late mighty fine, by reason of a laced whiske her mistress hath given her, which makes her a very gracefull servant. But, above all, my wife and I were the most surprised in the beauty of a plain girle, which we met in the little lane going from Redriffe-stairs into the fields, one of the prettiest faces that we think we ever saw in our lives.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 24 July 1667. 24 Jul 1667. At noon home to dinner, where my wife mighty musty, [Dull, heavy, spiritless] but I took no notice of it, but after dinner to the office, and there with Mr. Harper did another good piece of work about my late collection of the accounts of the Navy presented to the Parliament at their last session, which was left unfinished, and now I have done it which sets my mind at my ease, and so, having tired myself, I took a pair of oares about five o'clock, which I made a gally at Redriffe, and so with very much pleasure down to Gravesend, all the way with extraordinary content reading of Boyle's (40) Hydrostatickes, which the more I read and understand, the more I admire, as a most excellent piece of philosophy; as we come nearer Gravesend, we hear the Dutch fleete and ours a-firing their guns most distinctly and loud. But before we got to Gravesend they ceased, and it grew darkish, and so I landed only (and the flood being come) and went up to the Ship and discoursed with the landlord of the house, who undeceives me in what I heard this morning about the Dutch having lost two men-of-war, for it is not so, but several of their fire-ships. He do say, that this afternoon they did force our ships to retreat, but that now they are gone down as far as Shield-haven: but what the event hath been of this evening's guns they know not, but suppose not much, for they have all this while shot at good distance one from another. They seem confident of the security of this town and the River above it, if the enemy should come up so high; their fortifications being so good, and guns many. But he do say that people do complain of Sir Edward Spragg (47), that he hath not done extraordinary; and more of Sir W. Jenings, that he come up with his tamkins1 in his guns. Having discoursed this a little with him, and eat a bit of cold venison and drank, I away, took boat, and homeward again, with great pleasure, the moon shining, and it being a fine pleasant cool evening, and got home by half-past twelve at night, and so to bed.
Note 1. Tamkin, or tampion, the wooden stopper of a cannon placed in the muzzle to exclude water or dust.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 15 January 1668. 15 Jan 1668. Up, and to the Office, where all the morning.
At noon home to dinner, and then to the Office again, where we met about some business of D. Gawden's till candle-light; and then, as late as it was, I down to Redriffe, and so walked by moonlight to Deptford, where I have not been a great while, and my business I did there was only to walk up and down above la casa of Bagwell, but could not see her, it being my intent to have spent a little time con her, she being newly come from her husband; but I did lose my labour, and so walked back again, but with pleasure by the walk, and I had the sport to see two boys swear, and stamp, and fret, for not being able to get their horse over a stile and ditch, one of them swearing and cursing most bitterly; and I would fain, in revenge, have persuaded him to have drove his horse through the ditch, by which I believe he would have stuck there. But the horse would not be drove, and so they were forced to go back again, and so I walked away homeward, and there reading all the evening, and so to bed. This afternoon my Lord Anglesey (53) tells us that it is voted in Council to have a fleete of 50 ships out; but it is only a disguise for the Parliament to get some money by; but it will not take, I believe, and if it did, I do not think it will be such as he will get any of, nor such as will enable us to set out such a fleete.

Diary of Samuel Pepys 19 January 1668. 19 Jan 1668. Lord's Day. My wife the last night very ill of those, and waked me early, and hereupon I up and to church, where a dull sermon by our lecturer, and so home to dinner in my wife's chamber, which she is a little better. Then after dinner with Captain Perryman down to Redriffe, and so walked to Deptford, where I sent for Mr. Shish (63) out of the Church to advise about my vessel, "The Maybolt", and I do resolve to sell, presently, for any thing rather than keep her longer, having already lost £100 in her value, which I was once offered and refused, and the ship left without any body to look to her, which vexes me.
Thence Perryman and I back again, talking of the great miscarriages in the Navy, and among the principal that of having gentlemen commanders. I shall hereafter make use of his and others' help to reckon up and put down in writing what is fit to be mended in the Navy after all our sad experience therein.
So home, and there sat with my wife all the evening, and Mr. Pelting awhile talking with us, who tells me that my Lord Shrewsbury (45) is likely to do well, after his great wound in the late dwell. He gone, comes W. Hewer (26) and supped with me, and so to talk of things, and he tells me that Mr. Jessop is made Secretary to the Commissions of Parliament for Accounts, and I am glad, and it is pretty to see that all the Cavalier party were not able to find the Parliament nine Commissioners, or one Secretary, fit for the business. So he gone, I to read a little in my chamber, and so to bed.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 15 May 1668. 15 May 1668. Up, and betimes to White Hall, and there met with Sir H. Cholmly (35) at Sir Stephen Fox's (41), and there was also the Cofferer (64), and we did there consider about our money and the condition of the Excise, and after much dispute agreed upon a state thereof and the manner of our future course of payments.
Thence to the Duke of York (34), and there did a little navy business as we used to do, and so to a Committee for Tangier, where God knows how my Lord Bellasses's (53) accounts passed; understood by nobody but my Lord Ashly (46), who, I believe, was mad to let them go as he pleased. But here Sir H. Cholmly (35) had his propositions read, about a greater price for his work of the Mole, or to do it upon account, which, being read, he was bid to withdraw. But, Lord! to see how unlucky a man may be, by chance; for, making an unfortunate minute when they were almost tired with the other business, the Duke of York (34) did find fault with it, and that made all the rest, that I believe he had better have given a great deal, and had nothing said to it to-day; whereas, I have seen other things more extravagant passed at first hearing, without any difficulty.
Thence I to my Lord Brouncker's (48), at Mrs. Williams's, and there dined, and she did shew me her closet, which I was sorry to see, for fear of her expecting something from me; and here she took notice of my wife's not once coming to see her, which I am glad of; for she shall not—a prating, vain, idle woman.
Thence with Lord Brouncker (48) to Loriners'-hall1, by Mooregate, a hall I never heard of before, to Sir Thomas Teddiman's burial, where most people belonging to the sea were. And here we had rings: and here I do hear that some of the last words that he said were, that he had a very good King, God bless him! but that the Parliament had very ill rewarded him for all the service he had endeavoured to do them and his country; so that, for certain, this did go far towards his death. But, Lord! to see among [the company] the young commanders, and Thomas Killigrew (56) and others that come, how unlike a burial this was, O'Brian taking out some ballads out of his pocket, which I read, and the rest come about me to hear! and there very merry we were all, they being new ballets.
By and by the corpse went; and I, with my Lord Brouncker (48), and Dr. Clerke, and Mr. Pierce, as far as the foot of London-bridge; and there we struck off into Thames Street, the rest going to Redriffe, where he is to be buried. And we 'light at the Temple, and there parted; and I to the King's house, and there saw the last act of "The Committee", thinking to have seen Knepp there, but she did not act. And so to my bookseller's, and there carried home some books-among others, "Dr. Wilkins's Reall Character", and thence to Mrs. Turner's (45), and there went and sat, and she showed me her house from top to bottom, which I had not seen before, very handsome, and here supped, and so home, and got Mercer, and she and I in the garden singing till ten at night, and so home to a little supper, and then parted, with great content, and to bed. The Duchesse of Monmouth's hip is, I hear, now set again, after much pain. I am told also that the Countess of Shrewsbury is brought home by the Duke of Buckingham (40) to his house, where his Duchess saying that it was not for her and the other to live together in a house, he answered, Why, Madam, I did think so, and, therefore, have ordered your coach to be ready, to carry you to your father's, which was a devilish speech, but, they say, true; and my Lady Shrewsbury is there, it seems.
Note 1. The Loriners, or Lorimers (bit-makers), of London are by reputation an ancient mistery, but they were first incorporated by letters patent of 10 Queen Anne (December 3rd, 1711). Their small hall was at the corner of Basinghall Street in London Wall. The company has no hall now.

Read More ...

Diary of Samuel Pepys 04 March 1669. 04 Mar 1669. Up, and a while at the office, but thinking to have Mr. Povy's (55) business to-day at the Committee for Tangier, I left the Board and away to White Hall, where in the first court I did meet Sir Jeremy Smith, who did tell me that Sir W. Coventry (41) was just now sent to the Tower, about the business of his challenging the Duke of Buckingham (41), and so was also Harry Saville (27) to the Gate-house; which, as [he is] a gentleman, and of the Duke of York's (35) bedchamber, I heard afterwards that the Duke of York (35) is mightily incensed at, and do appear very high to the King (38) that he might not be sent thither, but to the Tower, this being done only in contempt to him. This news of Sir W. Coventry (41) did strike me to the heart, and with reason, for by this and my Lord of Ormond's (58) business, I do doubt that the Duke of Buckingham (41) will be so flushed, that he will not stop at any thing, but be forced to do any thing now, as thinking it not safe to end here; and, Sir W. Coventry (41) being gone, the King (38) will have never a good counsellor, nor the Duke of York (35) any sure friend to stick to him; nor any good man will be left to advise what is good. This, therefore, do heartily trouble me as any thing that ever I heard. So up into the House, and met with several people; but the Committee did not meet; and the whole House I find full of this business of Sir W. Coventry's (41), and most men very sensible of the cause and effects of it. So, meeting with my Lord Bellassis (54), he told me the particulars of this matter; that it arises about a quarrel which Sir W. Coventry (41) had with the Duke of Buckingham (41) about a design between the Duke and Sir Robert Howard, to bring him into a play at the King's house, which W. Coventry (41) not enduring, did by H. Saville (27) send a letter to the Duke of Buckingham (41), that he had a desire to speak with him. Upon which, the Duke of Buckingham (41) did bid Holmes (47), his champion ever since my Lord Shrewsbury's business1, go to him to know the business; but H. Saville (27) would not tell it to any but himself, and therefore did go presently to the Duke of Buckingham (41), and told him that his uncle Coventry (41) was a person of honour, and was sensible of his Grace's liberty taken of abusing him, and that he had a desire of satisfaction, and would fight with him. But that here they were interrupted by my Lord Chamberlain's (67) coming in, who was commanded to go to bid the Duke of Buckingham (41) to come to the King (38), Holmes (47) having discovered it. He told me that the King (38) did last night, at the Council, ask the Duke of Buckingham (41), upon his honour, whether he had received any challenge from W. Coventry (41)? which he confessed that he had; and then the King (38) asking W. Coventry (41), he told him that he did not owne what the Duke of Buckingham (41) had said, though it was not fit for him to give him a direct contradiction. But, being by the King (38) put upon declaring, upon his honour, the matter, he answered that he had understood that many hard questions had upon this business been moved to some lawyers, and that therefore he was unwilling to declare any thing that might, from his own mouth, render him obnoxious to his Majesty's displeasure, and, therefore, prayed to be excused: which the King (38) did think fit to interpret to be a confession, and so gave warrant that night for his commitment to the Tower. Being very much troubled at this, I away by coach homewards, and directly to the Tower, where I find him in one Mr. Bennet's house, son to Major Bayly, one of the Officers of the Ordnance, in the Bricke Tower2 where I find him busy with my Lord Halifax (35) and his brother (50); so I would not stay to interrupt them, but only to give him comfort, and offer my service to him, which he kindly and cheerfully received, only owning his being troubled for the King (38) his master's displeasure, which, I suppose, is the ordinary form and will of persons in this condition. And so I parted, with great content, that I had so earlily seen him there; and so going out, did meet Sir Jer. Smith going to meet me, who had newly been with Sir W. Coventry (41). And so he and I by water to Redriffe, and so walked to Deptford, where I have not been, I think, these twelve months: and there to the Treasurer's house, where the Duke of York (35) is, and his Duchess (31); and there we find them at dinner in the great room, unhung; and there was with them my Lady Duchess of Monmouth (31), the Countess of Falmouth (24), Castlemayne (28), Henrietta Hide (23) (my Lady Hinchingbroke's (24) sister), and my Lady Peterborough (47). And after dinner Sir Jer. Smith and I were invited down to dinner with some of the Maids of Honour, namely, Mrs. Ogle (17), Blake (16), and Howard (18), which did me good to have the honour to dine with, and look on; and the Mother of the Maids, and Mrs. Howard (43), the mother of the Maid of Honour of that name, and the Duke's housekeeper here. Here was also Monsieur Blancfort (28), Sir Richard Powell, Colonel Villers (48), Sir Jonathan Trelawny, and others. And here drank most excellent, and great variety, and plenty of wines, more than I have drank, at once, these seven years, but yet did me no great hurt. Having dined and very merry, and understanding by Blancfort (28) how angry the Duke of York (35) was, about their offering to send Saville to the Gate-house, among the rogues; and then, observing how this company, both the ladies and all, are of a gang, and did drink a health to the union of the two brothers, and talking of others as their enemies, they parted, and so we up; and there I did find the Duke of York (35) and Duchess (31), with all the great ladies, sitting upon a carpet, on the ground, there being no chairs, playing at "I love my love with an A, because he is so and so: and I hate him with an A, because of this and that:" and some of them, but particularly the Duchess (31) herself, and my Baroness Castlemayne (28), were very witty. This done, they took barge, and I with Sir J. Smith to Captain Cox's; and there to talk, and left them and other company to drink; while I slunk out to Bagwell's; and there saw her, and her mother, and our late maid Nell, who cried for joy to see me, but I had no time for pleasure then nor could stay, but after drinking I back to the yard, having a month's mind para have had a bout with Nell, which I believe I could have had, and may another time.
So to Cox's, and thence walked with Sir J. Smith back to Redriffe; and so, by water home, and there my wife mighty angry for my absence, and fell mightily out, but not being certain of any thing, but thinks only that Pierce or Knepp was there, and did ask me, and, I perceive, the boy, many questions. But I did answer her; and so, after much ado, did go to bed, and lie quiet all night; but [she] had another bout with me in the morning, but I did make shift to quiet her, but yet she was not fully satisfied, poor wretch! in her mind, and thinks much of my taking so much pleasure from her; which, indeed, is a fault, though I did not design or foresee it when I went.
Note 1. Charles II wrote to his sister (24) (Henrietta, Duchess of Orléans), on March 7th, 1669: "I am not sorry that Sir Will. Coventry has given me this good occasion by sending my Lord of Buckingham (41) a challenge to turne him out of the Councill. I do intend to turn him allso out of the Treasury. The truth of it is, he has been a troublesome man in both places and I am well rid of him" (Julia Cartwright's "Madame", 1894, p. 283).
Note 2. The Brick Tower stands on the northern wall, a little to the west of Martin tower, with which it communicates by a secret passage. It was the residence of the Master of the Ordnance, and Raleigh was lodged here for a time.

Read More ...

John Evelyn's Diary 11 June 1699. 11 Jun 1699. After a long drought, we had a refreshing shower. The day before, there was a dreadful fire at Rotherhithe, near the Thames side, which burned divers ships, and consumed nearly three hundred houses. Now died the famous Duchess of Mazarin (53); she had been the richest lady in Europe. She was niece of Cardinal Mazarin (96), and was married to the richest subject in Europe (67), as is said. She was born at Rome, educated in France, and was an extraordinary beauty and wit but dissolute and impatient of matrimonial restraint, so as to be abandoned by her husband (67), and banished, when she came into England for shelter, lived on a pension given her here, and is reported to have hastened her death by intemperate drinking strong spirits. She has written her own story and adventures, and so has her other extravagant sister (59), wife to the noble family of Colonna.