By 1630, Sir Gilbert Kniveton, 2nd Baronet (47) had inherited the Bradley and Sturston estates which were sold by 1655 to Francis Meynell a citizen and goldsmith of London.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 18 September 1662. 18 Sep 1662. At the office all the morning, and at noon Sir G. Carteret (52), Mr. Coventry (34), and I by invitation to dinner to Sheriff Maynell's, the great money-man; he, Alderman Backwell (44), and much noble and brave company, with the privilege of their rare discourse, which is great content to me above all other things in the world.
And after a great dinner and much discourse, we arose and took leave, and home to the business of my office, where I thank God I take delight, and in the evening to my lodging and to bed. Among other discourse, speaking concerning the great charity used in Catholic countrys, Mr. Ashburnham did tell us, that this last year, there being great want of corn in Paris, and so a collection made for the poor, there was two pearls brought in, nobody knew from whom (till the Queen (23), seeing them, knew whose they were, but did not discover it), which were sold for 200,000 crownes.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 19 January 1663. 19 Jan 1663. Up and to White Hall, and while the Duke (29) is dressing himself I went to wait on my Lord Sandwich (37), whom I found not very well, and Dr. Clerke with him. He is feverish, and hath sent for Mr. Pierce to let him blood, but not being in the way he puts it off till night, but he stirs not abroad to-day.
Then to the Duke, and in his closett discoursed as we use to do, and then broke up.
That done, I singled out Mr. Coventry (35) into the Matted Gallery, and there I told him the complaints I meet every day about our Treasurer's or his people's paying no money, but at the goldsmith's shops, where they are forced to pay fifteen or twenty sometimes per cent. for their money, which is a most horrid shame, and that which must not be suffered. Nor is it likely that the Treasurer (at least his people) will suffer Maynell the Goldsmith to go away with £10,000 per annum, as he do now get, by making people pay after this manner for their money. We were interrupted by the Duke (29), who called Mr. Coventry (35) aside for half an hour, walking with him in the gallery, and then in the garden, and then going away I ended my discourse with Mr. Coventry (35). But by the way Mr. Coventry (35) was saying that there remained nothing now in our office to be amended but what would do of itself every day better and better, for as much as he that was slowest, Sir W. Batten (62), do now begin to look about him and to mind business. At which, God forgive me! I was a little moved with envy, but yet I am glad, and ought to be, though it do lessen a little my care to see that the King's service is like to be better attended than it was heretofore.
Thence by coach to Mr. Povy's (49), being invited thither by (him) came a messenger this morning from him, where really he made a most excellent and large dinner, of their variety, even to admiration, he bidding us, in a frolique, to call for what we had a mind, and he would undertake to give it us: and we did for prawns, swan, venison, after I had thought the dinner was quite done, and he did immediately produce it, which I thought great plenty, and he seems to set off his rest in this plenty and the neatness of his house, which he after dinner showed me, from room to room, so beset with delicate pictures, and above all, a piece of perspective in his closett in the low parler; his stable, where was some most delicate horses, and the very-racks painted, and mangers, with a neat leaden painted cistern, and the walls done with Dutch tiles, like my chimnies. But still, above all things, he bid me go down into his wine-cellar, where upon several shelves there stood bottles of all sorts of wine, new and old, with labells pasted upon each bottle, and in the order and plenty as I never saw books in a bookseller's shop; and herein, I observe, he puts his highest content, and will accordingly commend all that he hath, but still they deserve to be so.
Here dined with me Dr. Whore and Mr. Scawen. Therewith him and Mr. Bland, whom we met by the way, to my Chancellor's (53), where the King (32) was to meet my Lord Treasurer (55), &c., many great men, to settle the revenue of Tangier. I staid talking awhile there, but the King (32) not coming I walked to my brother's, where I met my cozen Scotts (Tom not being at home) and sent for a glass of wine for them, and having drunk we parted, and I to the Wardrobe talking with Mr. Moore about my law businesses, which I doubt will go ill for want of time for me to attend them.
So home, where I found Mrs. Lodum speaking with my wife about her kinswoman which is offered my wife to come as a woman to her.
So to the office and put things in order, and then home and to bed, it being my great comfort that every day I understand more and more the pleasure of following of business and the credit that a man gets by it, which I hope at last too will end in profit.
This day, by Dr. Clerke, I was told the occasion of my Lord Chesterfield's (29) going and taking his lady (22) (my Lord Ormond's daughter) from Court. It seems he not only hath been long jealous of the Duke of York (29), but did find them two talking together, though there were others in the room, and the lady by all opinions a most good, virtuous woman.
He, the next day (of which the Duke was warned by somebody that saw the passion my Lord Chesterfield (29) was in the night before), went and told the Duke how much he did apprehend himself wronged, in his picking out his lady of the whole Court to be the subject of his dishonour; which the Duke (29) did answer with great calmness, not seeming to understand the reason of complaint, and that was all that passed but my Lord did presently pack his lady into the country in Derbyshire, near the Peake; which is become a proverb at Court, to send a man's wife to the Devil's arse a' Peake, when she vexes him.
This noon I did find out Mr. Dixon at Whitehall, and discoursed with him about Mrs. Wheatly's daughter for a wife for my brother Tom (29), and have committed it to him to enquire the pleasure of her father and mother concerning it. I demanded £300.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 February 1664. 01 Feb 1664. Up (my maids rising early this morning to washing), and being ready I found Mr. Strutt the purser below with 12 bottles of sacke, and tells me (which from Sir W. Batten (63) I had heard before) how young Jack Davis has railed against Sir W. Batten (63) for his endeavouring to turn him out of his place, at which for the fellow's sake, because it will likely prove his ruin, I am sorry, though I do believe he is a very arch rogue.
I took Strutt by coach with me to White Hall, where I set him down, and I to my Lord's, but found him gone out betimes to the Wardrobe, which I am glad to see that he so attends his business, though it troubles me that my counsel to my prejudice must be the cause of it. They tell me that he goes into the country next week, and that the young ladies come up this week before the old lady.
Here I hear how two men last night, justling for the wall about the New Exchange, did kill one another, each thrusting the other through; one of them of the King's Chappell, one Cave, and the other a retayner of my Lord Generall Middleton's (56).
Thence to White Hall; where, in the Duke's chamber, the King (33) came and stayed an hour or two laughing at Sir W. Petty (40), who was there about his boat; and at Gresham College in general; at which poor Petty was, I perceive, at some loss; but did argue discreetly, and bear the unreasonable follies of the King's objections and other bystanders with great discretion; and offered to take oddes against the King's best boates; but the King (33) would not lay, but cried him down with words only. Gresham College he mightily laughed at, for spending time only in weighing of ayre, and doing nothing else since they sat.
Thence to Westminster Hall, and there met with diverse people, it being terme time. Among others I spoke with Mrs. Lane, of whom I doubted to hear something of the effects of our last meeting about a fortnight or three weeks ago, but to my content did not. Here I met with Mr. Pierce, who tells me of several passages at Court, among others how the King (33), coming the other day to his Theatre to see "The Indian Queen" (which he commends for a very fine thing), my Baroness Castlemaine (23) was in the next box before he came; and leaning over other ladies awhile to whisper to the King (33), she rose out of the box and went into the King's, and set herself on the King's right hand, between the King (33) and the Duke of York (30); which, he swears, put the King (33) himself, as well as every body else, out of countenance; and believes that she did it only to show the world that she is not out of favour yet, as was believed.
Thence with Alderman Maynell by his coach to the 'Change, and there with several people busy, and so home to dinner, and took my wife out immediately to the King's Theatre, it being a new month, and once a month I may go, and there saw "The Indian Queen" acted; which indeed is a most pleasant show, and beyond my expectation; the play good, but spoiled with the ryme, which breaks the sense. But above my expectation most, the eldest Marshall did do her part most excellently well as I ever heard woman in my life; but her voice not so sweet as Ianthe's (27); but, however, we came home mightily contented. Here we met Mr. Pickering (46) and his mistress, Mrs. Doll Wilde (31); he tells me that the business runs high between the Chancellor (54) and my Lord Bristoll (51) against the Parliament; and that my Lord Lauderdale (47) and Cooper (42) open high against the Chancellor (54); which I am sorry for.
In my way home I 'light and to the Coffee-house, where I heard Lt. Coll. Baron tell very good stories of his travels over the high hills in Asia above the clouds, how clear the heaven is above them, how thicke like a mist the way is through the cloud that wets like a sponge one's clothes, the ground above the clouds all dry and parched, nothing in the world growing, it being only a dry earth, yet not so hot above as below the clouds. The stars at night most delicate bright and a fine clear blue sky, but cannot see the earth at any time through the clouds, but the clouds look like a world below you.
Thence home and to supper, being hungry, and so to the office, did business, specially about Creed, for whom I am now pretty well fitted, and so home to bed. This day in Westminster Hall W. Bowyer told me that his father is dead lately, and died by being drowned in the river, coming over in the night; but he says he had not been drinking. He was taken with his stick in his hand and cloake over his shoulder, as ruddy as before he died. His horse was taken overnight in the water, hampered in the bridle, but they were so silly as not to look for his master till the next morning, that he was found drowned.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 08 June 1665. 08 Jun 1665. About five o'clock my wife come home, it having lightened all night hard, and one great shower of rain. She come and lay upon the bed; I up and to the office, where all the morning.
I to my Lord Treasurer's (58) by appointment of Sir Thomas Ingram's (50), to meet the Goldsmiths; where I met with the great news at last newly come, brought by Bab May (37) from the Duke of Yorke (31), that we have totally routed the Dutch; that the Duke (31) himself, the Prince (45), my Lord Sandwich (39), and Mr. Coventry (37) are all well: which did put me into such joy, that I forgot almost all other thoughts. The particulars I shall set down by and by.
By and by comes Alderman Maynell and Mr. Viner (34), and there my Lord Treasurer (58) did intreat them to furnish me with money upon my tallys, Sir Philip Warwicke (55) before my Lord declaring the King's changing of the hand from Mr. Povy (51) to me, whom he called a very sober person, and one whom the Lord Treasurer (58) would owne in all things that I should concern myself with them in the business of money. They did at present declare they could not part with money at present. My Lord did press them very hard, and I hope upon their considering we shall get some of them.
Thence with great joy to the Cocke-pitt; where the Duke of Albemarle (56), like a man out of himself with content, new-told me all; and by and by comes a letter from Mr. Coventry's (37) own hand to him, which he never opened (which was a strange thing), but did give it me to open and read, and consider what was fit for our office to do in it, and leave the letter with Sir W. Clerke; which upon such a time and occasion was a strange piece of indifference, hardly pardonable. I copied out the letter, and did also take minutes out of Sir W. Clerke's other letters; and the sum of the newes is:
This day they engaged; the Dutch neglecting greatly the opportunity of the wind they had of us, by which they lost the benefit of their fire-ships. The Earl of Falmouth (35), Muskerry, and Mr. Richard Boyle killed on board the Duke's ship, the Royall Charles, with one shot: their blood and brains flying in the Duke's (31) face; and the head of Mr. Boyle striking down the Duke (31), as some say. !Earle of Marlborough (47), Portland (26), Rear-Admirall Sansum (to Prince Rupert (45)) killed, and Capt. Kirby and Ableson. Sir John Lawson (50) wounded on the knee; hath had some bones taken out, and is likely to be well again. Upon receiving the hurt, he sent to the Duke (31) for another to command the Royall Oake. The Duke (31) sent Jordan1 out of the St. George, who did brave things in her. Capt. Jer. Smith of the Mary was second to the Duke (31), and stepped between him and Captain Seaton of the Urania (76 guns and 400 men), who had sworn to board the Duke (31); killed him, 200 men, and took the ship; himself losing 99 men, and never an officer saved but himself and lieutenant. His master indeed is saved, with his leg cut off: Admirall Opdam blown up, Trump killed, and said by Holmes; all the rest of their admiralls, as they say, but Everson (whom they dare not trust for his affection to the Prince of Orange), are killed: we having taken and sunk, as is believed, about 24 of their best ships; killed and taken near 8 or 10,000 men, and lost, we think, not above 700. A great[er] victory never known in the world. They are all fled, some 43 got into the Texell, and others elsewhere, and we in pursuit of the rest.
Thence, with my heart full of joy; home, and to my office a little; then to my Lady Pen's (41), where they are all joyed and not a little puffed up at the good successe of their father (44)2 and good service indeed is said to have been done by him. Had a great bonefire at the gate; and I with my Lady Pen's (41) people and others to Mrs. Turner's (42) great room, and then down into the streete. I did give the boys 4s. among them, and mighty merry.
So home to bed, with my heart at great rest and quiett, saving that the consideration of the victory is too great for me presently to comprehend3.
Note 1. Afterwards Sir Joseph Jordan, commander of the "Royal Sovereign", and Vice-Admiral of the Red, 1672. He was knighted on July 1st, 1665. B.
Note 2. In the royal charter granted by Charles II in 1680 to William Penn for the government of his American province, to be styled Pennsylvania, special reference is made to "the memory and merits of Sir William Pen (44) in divers services, and particularly his conduct, courage, and discretion under our dearest brother, James, Duke of York (31), in that signal battle and victory fought and obtained against the Dutch fleet commanded by Heer van Opdam in 1665" ("Penn's Memorials of Sir W. Penn (44)", vol. ii., p. 359).
Note 3. Mrs. Ady (Julia Cartwright), in her fascinating life of Henrietta, Duchess of Orléans, gives an account of the receipt of the news of the great sea-fight in Paris, and quotes a letter of Charles II to his sister, dated, "Whitehall, June 8th, 1665" The first report that reached Paris was that "the Duke of York's (31) ship had been blown up, and he himself had been drowned". "The shock was too much for Madame... she was seized with convulsions, and became so dangerously ill that Lord Hollis (65) wrote to the King (35), 'If things had gone ill at sea I really believe Madame would have died.'" Charles wrote: "I thanke God we have now the certayne newes of a very considerable victory over the Duch; you will see most of the particulars by the relation my Lord Hopis will shew you, though I have had as great a losse as 'tis possible in a good frinde, poore C. Barckely (35). It troubles me so much, as I hope you will excuse the shortnesse of this letter, haveing receaved the newes of it but two houres agoe" ("Madame", 1894, pp. 215, 216).
Diary of Samuel Pepys 06 October 1665. 06 Oct 1665. Up, and having sent for Mr. Gawden he come to me, and he and I largely discoursed the business of his Victualling, in order to the adding of partners to him or other ways of altering it, wherein I find him ready to do anything the King (35) would have him do. So he and I took his coach and to Lambeth and to the Duke of Albemarle (56) about it, and so back again, where he left me. In our way discoursing of the business and contracting a great friendship with him, and I find he is a man most worthy to be made a friend, being very honest and gratefull, and in the freedom of our discourse he did tell me his opinion and knowledge of Sir W. Pen (44) to be, what I know him to be, as false a man as ever was born, for so, it seems, he hath been to him. He did also tell me, discoursing how things are governed as to the King's treasure, that, having occasion for money in the country, he did offer Alderman Maynell to pay him down money here, to be paid by the Receiver in some county in the country, upon whom Maynell had assignments, in whose hands the money also lay ready. But Maynell refused it, saying that he could have his money when he would, and had rather it should lie where it do than receive it here in towne this sickly time, where he hath no occasion for it. But now the evil is that he hath lent this money upon tallys which are become payable, but he finds that nobody looks after it, how long the money is unpaid, and whether it lies dead in the Receiver's hands or no, so the King (35) he pays Maynell 10 per cent. while the money lies in his Receiver's hands to no purpose but the benefit of the Receiver.
I to dinner to the King's Head with Mr. Woolly, who is come to instruct me in the business of my goods, but gives me not so good comfort as I thought I should have had. But, however, it will be well worth my time though not above 2 or £300.
He gone I to my office, where very busy drawing up a letter by way of discourse to the Duke of Albemarle (56) about my conception how the business of the Victualling should be ordered, wherein I have taken great pains, and I think have hitt the right if they will but follow it. At this very late and so home to our lodgings to bed.
Before 08 Oct 1666 Alderman Francis Meynell Goldsmith -1666 died. His will was proved 05 Feb 1683. His will includes:
Diary of Samuel Pepys 08 October 1666. 08 Oct 1666. Up and to my office, called up by Commissioner Middleton, newly come to town, but staid not with me; so I to my office busy all the morning. Towards noon, by water to Westminster Hall, and there by several hear that the Parliament do resolve to do something to retrench Sir G. Carteret's (56) great salary; but cannot hear of any thing bad they can lay to his charge.
The House did this day order to be engrossed the Bill against importing Irish cattle; a thing, it seems, carried on by the Western Parliament-men, wholly against the sense of most of the rest of the House; who think if you do this, you give the Irish again cause to rebel. Thus plenty on both sides makes us mad. The Committee of the Canary Company of both factions come to me for my Cozen Roger (49) that is of the Committee.
Thence with Sir W. Coventry (38) when the House rose and Sir W. Batten (65) to St. James's, and there agreed of and signed our paper of extraordinaries, and there left them, and I to Unthanke's, where Mr. Falconbridge's girle is, and by and by comes my wife, who likes her well, though I confess I cannot (though she be of my finding out and sings pretty well), because she will be raised from so mean a condition to so high all of a sudden; but she will be much to our profit, more than Mercer, less expense. Here we bespoke anew gowne for her, and to come to us on Friday. !She being gone, my wife and I home by coach, and then I presently by water with Mr. Pierce to Westminster Hall, he in the way telling me how the Duke of York (32) and Duke of Albemarle (57) do not agree. The Duke of York (32) is wholly given up to this bitch (26) of Denham (51). The Duke of Albemarle (57) and Prince Rupert (46) do less agree. So that we are all in pieces, and nobody knows what will be done the next year.
The King (36) hath yesterday in Council declared his resolution of setting a fashion for clothes, which he will never alter1. It will be a vest, I know not well how; but it is to teach the nobility thrift, and will do good.
By and by comes down from the Committee Sir W. Coventry (38), and I find him troubled at several things happened this afternoon, which vexes me also; our business looking worse and worse, and our worke growing on our hands. Time spending, and no money to set anything in hand with; the end thereof must be speedy ruine. The Dutch insult and have taken off Bruant's head2, which they have not dared to do (though found guilty of the fault he did die for, of something of the Prince of Orange's (15) faction) till just now, which speaks more confidence in our being worse than before. Alderman Maynell, I hear, is dead.
Thence returned in the darke by coach all alone, full of thoughts of the consequences of this ill complexion of affairs, and how to save myself and the little I have, which if I can do, I have cause to bless God that I am so well, and shall be well contented to retreat to Brampton, and spend the rest of my days there.
So to my office, and did some business, and finished my Journall with resolutions, if God bless me, to apply myself soberly to settle all matters for myself, and expect the event of all with comfort.
So home to supper and to bed.
Note 1. There are several references to this new fashion of dress introduced by the King (36), Pepys saw the Duke of York (32) put on the vest on the 13th, and he says Charles II himself put it on on the 15th. On November 4th Pepys dressed himself in the new vest and coat. See notes, October 15th and November 22nd.
Note 2. Captain Du Buat, a Frenchman in the Dutch service, plotted with two magistrates of Rotterdam to obtain a peace with England as the readiest means of pressing the elevation of the Prince of Orange to the office of Captain-General. He was brought before the Supreme Court of Holland, condemned, and executed. He had been one of the household of the Prince of Orange who were dismissed by De Witt.