The Diary of Samuel Pepys, by Samuel Pepys

March 1660–1661

March 1st. All the morning at the office. Dined at home only upon fish, and Mr. Shepley and Tom Hater with me. After dinner Mr. Shepley and I in private talking about my Lord’s intentions to go speedily into the country, but to what end we know not. We fear he is to go to sea with this fleet now preparing. But we wish that he could get his £4000 per annum settled before he do go. Then he and I walked into London, he to the Wardrobe and I to Whitefryars, and saw “The Bondman” acted; an excellent play and well done. But above all that ever I saw, Betterton do the Bond man the best. Then to my father’s and found my mother ill. After staying a while with them, I went home and sat up late, spending my thoughts how to get money to bear me out in my great expense at the Coronacion, against which all provide, and scaffolds setting up in every street. I had many designs in my head to get some, but know not which will take. To bed.

2d. Early with Mr. Moore about Sir Paul Neale’s’ business with my uncle and other things all the morning. Dined with him at Mr. Crew’s, and after dinner I went to the Theatre, where I found so few people (which is strange, and the reason I did not know) that I went out again, and so to Salsbury Court, where the house as full as could be; and it seems it was a new play, “The Queen’s Maske,” wherein there are some good humours: among others, a good jeer to the old story of the Siege of Troy, making it to be a common country tale. But above all it was strange to see so little a boy as that was to act Cupid, which is one of the greatest parts in it. Then home and to bed.

3rd (Lord’s day). Mr. Woodcocke preached at our church a very good sermon upon the imaginacions of the thoughts of man’s heart being only evil. So home, where being told that my Lord had sent for me I went, and got there to dine with my Lord, who is to go into the country tomorrow. I did give up the mortgage made to me by Sir R. Parkhurst for £2,000. In the Abby all the afternoon. Then at Mr. Pierces the surgeon, where Shepley and I supped. So to my Lord’s, who comes in late and tells us how news is come today of Mazarin’s being dead, which is very great news and of great consequence. —[This report of the death of Cardinal Mazarin appears to have been premature, for he did not die until the 9th of March, 1661.]— I lay tonight with Mr. Shepley here, because of my Lord’s going tomorrow.

4th. My Lord went this morning on his journey to Hinchingbroke, Mr. Parker with him; the chief business being to look over and determine how, and in what manner, his great work of building shall be done. Before his going he did give me some jewells to keep for him, viz., that that the King of Sweden did give him, with the King’s own picture in it, most excellently done; and a brave George, all of diamonds, and this with the greatest expressions of love and confidence that I could imagine or hope for, which is a very great joy to me. To the office all the forenoon. Then to dinner and so to Whitehall to Mr. Coventry about several businesses, and then with Mr. Moore, who went with me to drink a cup of ale, and after some good discourse then home and sat late talking with Sir W. Batten. So home and to bed.

5th. With Mr. Pierce, purser, to Westminster Hall, and there met with Captain Cuttance, Lieut. Lambert, and Pierce, surgeon, thinking to have met with the Commissioners of Parliament, but they not sitting, we went to the Swan, where I did give them a barrel of oysters; and so I to my Lady’s and there dined, and had very much talk and pleasant discourse with my Lady, my esteem growing every day higher and higher in her and my Lord. So to my father Bowyer’s where my wife was, and to the Commissioners of Parliament, and there did take some course about having my Lord’s salary paid tomorrow when; the Charles is paid off, but I was troubled to see how high they carry themselves, when in good truth nobody cares for them. So home by coach and my wife. I then to the office, where Sir Williams both and I set about making an estimate of all the officers’ salaries in ordinary in the Navy till 10 o’clock at night. So home, and I with my head full of thoughts how to get a little present money, I eat a bit of bread and cheese, and so to bed.

6th. At the office all the morning. At dinner Sir W. Batten came and took me and my wife to his house to dinner, my Lady being in the country, where we had a good Lenten dinner. Then to Whitehall with Captn. Cuttle, and there I did some business with Mr. Coventry, and after that home, thinking to have had Sir W. Batten, &c., to have eat a wigg —[Wigg, a kind of north country bun or tea-cake, still so called, to my knowledge, in Staffordshire. — M. B.]— at my house at night. But my Lady being come home out of the country ill by reason of much rain that has fallen lately, and the waters being very high, we could not, and so I home and to bed.

7th. This morning Sir Williams both went to Woolwich to sell some old provisions there. I to Whitehall, and up and down about many businesses. Dined at my Lord’s, then to Mr. Crew to Mr. Moore, and he and I to London to Guildhall to see the seamen paid off, but could not without trouble, and so I took him to the Fleece tavern, where the pretty woman that Luellin lately told me the story of dwells, but I could not see her. Then towards home and met Spicer, D. Vines, Ruddiard, and a company more of my old acquaintance, and went into a place to drink some ale, and there we staid playing the fool till late, and so I home. At home met with ill news that my hopes of getting some money for the Charles were spoiled through Mr. Waith’s perverseness, which did so vex me that I could not sleep at night. But I wrote a letter to him to send tomorrow morning for him to take my money for me, and so with good words I thought to coy with him. To bed.

8th. All the morning at the office. At noon Sir W. Batten, Col. Slingsby and I by coach to the Tower, to Sir John Robinson’s, to dinner; where great good cheer. High company; among others the Duchess of Albemarle, who is ever a plain homely dowdy. After dinner, to drink all the afternoon. Towards night the Duchess and ladies went away. Then we set to it again till it was very late. And at last came in Sir William Wale, almost fuddled; and because I was set between him and another, only to keep them from talking and spoiling the company (as we did to others), he fell out with the Lieutenant of the Tower; but with much ado we made him under stand his error, and then all quiet. And so he carried Sir William Batten and I home again in his coach, and so I almost overcome with drink went to bed. I was much contented to ride in such state into the Tower, and be received among such high company, while Mr. Mount, my Lady Duchess’s gentleman usher, stood waiting at table, whom I ever thought a man so much above me in all respects; also to hear the discourse of so many high Cavaliers of things past. It was a great content and joy to me.

9th. To Whitehall and there with Mr. Creed took a most pleasant walk for two hours in the park, which is now a very fair place. Here we had a long and candid discourse one to another of one another’s condition, and he giving me an occasion I told him of my intention to get £60 paid me by him for a gratuity for my labour extraordinary at sea. Which he did not seem unwilling to, and therefore I am very glad it is out. To my Lord’s, where we found him lately come from Hinchingbroke, where he left my uncle very well, but my aunt not likely to live. I staid and dined with him. He took me aside, and asked me what the world spoke of the King’s marriage. Which I answering as one that knew nothing, he enquired no further of me. But I do perceive by it that there is something in it that is ready to come out that the world knows not of yet. After dinner into London to Mrs. Turner’s and my father’s, made visits and then home, where I sat late making of my journal for four days past, and so to bed.

10th (Lord’s day). Heard Mr. Mills in the morning, a good sermon. Dined at home on a poor Lenten dinner of coleworts and bacon. In the afternoon again to church, and there heard one Castle, whom I knew of my year at Cambridge. He made a dull sermon. After sermon came my uncle and aunt Wight to see us, and we sat together a great while. Then to reading and at night to bed.

11th. At the office all the morning, dined at home and my father and Dr. Thos. Pepys with him upon a poor dinner, my wife being abroad. After dinner I went to the theatre, and there saw “Love’s Mistress” done by them, which I do not like in some things as well as their acting in Salsbury Court. At night home and found my wife come home, and among other things she hath got her teeth new done by La Roche, and are indeed now pretty handsome, and I was much pleased with it. So to bed.

12th. At the office about business all the morning, so to the Exchange, and there met with Nick Osborne lately married, and with him to the Fleece, where we drank a glass of wine. So home, where I found Mrs. Hunt in great trouble about her husband’s losing of his place in the Excise. From thence to Guildhall, and there set my hand to the book before Colonel King for my sea pay, and blessed be God! they have cast me at midshipman’s pay, which do make my heart very glad. So, home, and there had Sir W. Batten and my Lady and all their company and Capt. Browne and his wife to a collation at my house till it was late, and then to bed.

13th. Early up in the morning to read “The Seaman’s Grammar and Dictionary” I lately have got, which do please me exceeding well. At the office all the morning, dined at home, and Mrs. Turner, The. Joyce, and Mr. Armiger, and my father and mother with me, where they stand till I was weary of their company and so away. Then up to my chamber, and there set papers and things in order, and so to bed.

14th. With Sir W. Batten and Pen to Mr. Coventry’s, and there had a dispute about my claim to the place of Purveyor of Petty-provisions, and at last to my content did conclude to have my hand to all the bills for these provisions and Mr. Turner to purvey them, because I would not have him to lose the place. Then to my Lord’s, and so with Mr. Creed to an alehouse, where he told me a long story of his amours at Portsmouth to one of Mrs. Boat’s daughters, which was very pleasant. Dined with my Lord and Lady, and so with Mr. Creed to the Theatre, and there saw “King and no King,” well acted. Thence with him to the Cock alehouse at Temple Bar, where he did ask my advice about his amours, and I did give him it, which was to enquire into the condition of his competitor, who is a son of Mr. Gauden’s, and that I promised to do for him, and he to make [what] use he can of it to his advantage. Home and to bed.

15th. At the office all the morning. At noon Sir Williams both and I at a great fish dinner at the Dolphin, given us by two tax merchants, and very merry we were till night, and so home. This day my wife and Pall went to see my Lady Kingston, her brother’s lady.

16th. Early at Sir Wm. Pen’s, and there before Mr. Turner did reconcile the business of the purveyance between us two. Then to Whitehall to my Lord’s, and dined with him, and so to Whitefriars and saw “The Spanish Curate,” in which I had no great content. So home, and was very much troubled that Will. staid out late, and went to bed early, intending not to let him come in, but by and by he comes and I did let him in, and he did tell me that he was at Guildhall helping to pay off the seamen, and cast the books late. Which since I found to be true. So to sleep, being in bed when he came.

17th (Lord’s day). At church in the morning, a stranger preached a good honest and painfull sermon. My wife and I dined upon a chine of beef at Sir W. Batten’s, so to church again. Then home, and put some papers in order. Then to supper at Sir W. Batten’s again, where my wife by chance fell down and hurt her knees exceedingly. So home and to bed.

18th. This morning early Sir W. Batten went to Rochester, where he expects to be chosen Parliament man. At the office all the morning, dined at home and with my wife to Westminster, where I had business with the Commissioner for paying the seamen about my Lord’s pay, and my wife at Mrs. Hunt’s. I called her home, and made inquiry at Greatorex’s and in other places to hear of Mr. Barlow (thinking to hear that he is dead), but I cannot find it so, but the contrary. Home and called at my Lady Batten’s, and supped there, and so home. This day an ambassador from Florence was brought into the town in state. Good hopes given me today that Mrs. Davis is going away from us, her husband going shortly to Ireland. Yesterday it was said was to be the day that the Princess Henrietta was to marry the Duke d’Anjou’ in France. This day I found in the newes-booke that Roger Pepys is chosen at Cambridge for the town, the first place that we hear of to have made their choice yet. To bed with my head and mind full of business, which do a little put me out of order, and I do find myself to become more and more thoughtful about getting of money than ever heretofore.

19th. We met at the office this morning about some particular business, and then I to Whitehall, and there dined with my Lord, and after dinner Mr. Creed and I to White–Fryars, where we saw “The Bondman” acted most excellently, and though I have seen it often, yet I am every time more and more pleased with Betterton’s action. From thence with him and young Mr. Jones to Penell’s in Fleet Street, and there we drank and talked a good while, and so I home and to bed.

20th. At the office all the morning, dined at home and Mr. Creed and Mr. Shepley with me, and after dinner we did a good deal of business in my study about my Lord’s accounts to be made up and presented to our office. That done to White Hall to Mr. Coventry, where I did some business with him, and so with Sir W. Pen (who I found with Mr. Coventry teaching of him upon the map to understand Jamaica).1 By water in the dark home, and so to my Lady Batten’s where my wife was, and there we sat and eat and drank till very late, and so home to bed. The great talk of the town is the strange election that the City of London made yesterday for Parliament-men; viz. Fowke, Love, Jones, and . . . men that are so far from being episcopall that they are thought to be Anabaptists; and chosen with a great deal of zeal, in spite of the other party that thought themselves very strong, calling out in the Hall, “No Bishops! no Lord Bishops!” It do make people to fear it may come to worse, by being an example to the country to do the same. And indeed the Bishops are so high, that very few do love them.

1 Sir William Penn was well fitted to give this information, as it was he who took the island from the Spaniards in 1655.

21st. Up very early, and to work and study in my chamber, and then to Whitehall to my Lord, and there did stay with him a good while discoursing upon his accounts. Here I staid with Mr. Creed all the morning, and at noon dined with my Lord, who was very merry, and after dinner we sang and fiddled a great while. Then I by water (Mr. Shepley, Pinkney, and others going part of the way) home, and then hard at work setting my papers in order, and writing letters till night, and so to bed. This day I saw the Florence Ambassador go to his audience, the weather very foul, and yet he and his company very gallant. After I was a-bed Sir W. Pen sent to desire me to go with him tomorrow morning to meet Sir W. Batten coming from Rochester.

22nd. This morning I rose early, and my Lady Batten knocked at her door that comes into one of my chambers, and called me to know whether I and my wife were ready to go. So my wife got her ready, and about eight o’clock I got a horseback, and my Lady and her two daughters, and Sir W. Pen into coach, and so over London Bridge, and thence to Dartford. The day very pleasant, though the way bad. Here we met with Sir W. Batten, and some company along with him, who had assisted him in his election at Rochester; and so we dined and were very merry. At 5 o’clock we set out again in a coach home, and were very merry all the way. At Deptford we met with Mr. Newborne, and some other friends and their wives in a coach to meet us, and so they went home with us, and at Sir W. Batten’s we supped, and thence to bed, my head akeing mightily through the wine that I drank today.

23d. All the morning at home putting papers in order, dined at home, and then out to the Red Bull (where I had not been since plays come up again), but coming too soon I went out again and walked all up and down the Charterhouse yard and Aldersgate street. At last came back again and went in, where I was led by a seaman that knew me, but is here as a servant, up to the tireing-room, where strange the confusion and disorder that there is among them in fitting themselves, especially here, where the clothes are very poor, and the actors but common fellows. At last into the Pitt, where I think there was not above ten more than myself, and not one hundred in the whole house. And the play, which is called “All’s lost by Lust,” poorly done; and with so much disorder, among others, that in the musique-room the boy that was to sing a song, not singing it right, his master fell about his ears and beat him so, that it put the whole house in an uprore. Thence homewards, and at the Mitre met my uncle Wight, and with him Lieut.-Col. Baron, who told us how Crofton, the great Presbyterian minister that had lately preached so highly against Bishops, is clapped up this day into the Tower. Which do please some, and displease others exceedingly. Home and to bed.

24th (Lord’s day). My wife and I to church, and then home with Sir W. Batten and my Lady to dinner, where very merry, and then to church again, where Mr. Mills made a good sermon. Home again, and after a walk in the garden Sir W. Batten’s two daughters came and sat with us a while, and I then up to my chamber to read.

25th (Lady day). This morning came workmen to begin the making of me a new pair of stairs up out of my parler, which, with other work that I have to do, I doubt will keep me this two months and so long I shall be all in dirt; but the work do please me very well. To the office, and there all the morning, dined at home, and after dinner comes Mr. Salisbury to see me, and shewed me a face or two of his paynting, and indeed I perceive that he will be a great master. I took him to Whitehall with me by water, but he would not by any means be moved to go through bridge, and so we were fain to go round by the Old Swan. To my Lord’s and there I shewed him the King’s picture, which he intends to copy out in little. After that I and Captain Ferrers to Salisbury Court by water, and saw part of the “Queene’s Maske.” Then I to Mrs. Turner, and there staid talking late. The. Turner being in a great chafe, about being disappointed of a room to stand in at the Coronacion. Then to my father’s, and there staid talking with my mother and him late about my dinner tomorrow. So homewards and took up a boy that had a lanthorn, that was picking up of rags, and got him to light me home, and had great discourse with him how he could get sometimes three or four bushells of rags in a day, and got 3d. a bushell for them, and many other discourses, what and how many ways there are for poor children to get their livings honestly. So home and I to bed at 12 o’clock at night, being pleased well with the work that my workmen have begun today.

26th. Up early to do business in my study. This is my great day that three years ago I was cut of the stone, and, blessed be God, I do yet find myself very free from pain again. All this morning I staid at home looking after my workmen to my great content about my stairs, and at noon by coach to my father’s, where Mrs. Turner, The. Joyce, Mr. Morrice, Mr. Armiger, Mr. Pierce, the surgeon, and his wife, my father and mother, and myself and my wife. Very merry at dinner; among other things, because Mrs. Turner and her company eat no flesh at all this Lent, and I had a great deal of good flesh which made their mouths water. After dinner Mrs. Pierce and her husband and I and my wife to Salisbury Court, where coming late he and she light of Col. Boone that made room for them, and I and my wife sat in the pit, and there met with Mr. Lewes and Tom Whitton, and saw “The Bondman” done to admiration. So home by coach, and after a view of what the workmen had done today I went to bed.

27th. Up early to see my workmen at work. My brother Tom comes to me, and among other things I looked over my old clothes and did give him a suit of black stuff clothes and a hat and some shoes. At the office all the morning, where Sir G. Carteret comes, and there I did get him to promise me some money upon a bill of exchange, whereby I shall secure myself of £60 which otherwise I should not know how to get. At noon I found my stairs quite broke down, that I could not get up but by a ladder; and my wife not being well she kept her chamber all this day. To the Dolphin to a dinner of Mr. Harris’s, where Sir Williams both and my Lady Batten, and her two daughters, and other company, where a great deal of mirth, and there staid till 11 o’clock at night; and in our mirth I sang and sometimes fiddled (there being a noise of fiddlers there), and at last we fell to dancing, the first time that ever I did in my life, which I did wonder to see myself to do. At last we made Mingo, Sir W. Batten’s black, and Jack, Sir W. Pen’s, dance, and it was strange how the first did dance with a great deal of seeming skill. Home, where I found my wife all day in her chamber. So to bed.

28th. Up early among my workmen, then Mr. Creed coming to see me I went along with him to Sir Robert Slingsby (he being newly maister of that title by being made a Baronett) to discourse about Mr. Creed’s accounts to be made up, and from thence by coach to my cozen Thomas Pepys, to borrow £1000 for my Lord, which I am to expect an answer to tomorrow. So to my Lord’s, and there staid and dined, and after dinner did get my Lord to view Mr. Shepley’s accounts as I had examined them, and also to sign me a bond for my £500. Then with Mr. Shepley to the Theatre and saw “Rollo” ill acted. That done to drink a cup of ale and so by coach to London, and having set him down in Cheapside I went home, where I found a great deal of work done today, and also £70 paid me by the Treasurer upon the bill of exchange that I have had hopes of so long, so that, my heart in great content; I went to bed.

29th. Up among my workmen with great pleasure. Then to the office, where I found Sir W. Pen sent down yesterday to Chatham to get two great ships in readiness presently to go to the East Indies upon some design against the Dutch, we think, at Goa but it is a great secret yet. Dined at home, came Mr. Shepley and Moore, and did business with both of them. After that to Sir W. Batten’s, where great store of company at dinner. Among others my schoolfellow, Mr. Christmas, where very merry, and hither came letters from above for the fitting of two other ships for the East Indies in all haste, and so we got orders presently for the Hampshire and Nonsuch. Then home and there put some papers in order, and not knowing what to do, the house being so dirty, I went to bed.

30th. At the office we and Sir W. Rider to advise what sort of provisions to get ready for these ships going to the Indies. Then the Comptroller and I by water to Mr. Coventry, and there discoursed upon the same thing. So to my coz. Tho. Pepys, and got him to promise me £1,000 to lend my Lord upon his and my uncle Robert’s and my security. So to my Lord’s, and there got him to sign a bond to him, which I also signed too, and he did sign counter security to us both. Then into London up and down and drank a pint of wine with Mr. Creed, and so home and sent a letter and the bonds to my uncle to sign for my Lord. This day I spoke with Dr. Castle about making up the dividend for the last quarter, and agreed to meet about it on Monday.

31st (Sunday). At church, where a stranger preached like a fool. From thence home and dined with my wife, she staying at home, being unwilling to dress herself, the house being all dirty. To church again, and after sermon I walked to my father’s, and to Mrs. Turner’s, where I could not woo The. to give me a lesson upon the harpsicon and was angry at it. So home and finding Will abroad at Sir W. Batten’s talking with the people there (Sir W. and my Lady being in the country), I took occasion to be angry with him, and so to prayers and to bed.

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Last updated Monday, March 17, 2014 at 17:10