The Diary of Samuel Pepys, by Samuel Pepys

July 1661

July 1st. This morning I went up and down into the city, to buy several things, as I have lately done, for my house. Among other things, a fair chest of drawers for my own chamber, and an Indian gown for myself. The first cost me 33s., the other 34s. Home and dined there, and Theodore Goodgroome, my singing master, with me, and then to our singing. After that to the office, and then home.

2nd. To Westminster Hall and there walked up and down, it being Term time. Spoke with several, among others my cozen Roger Pepys, who was going up to the Parliament House, and inquired whether I had heard from my father since he went to Brampton, which I had done yesterday, who writes that my uncle is by fits stupid, and like a man that is drunk, and sometimes speechless. Home, and after my singing master had done, took coach and went to Sir William Davenant’s Opera; this being the fourth day that it hath begun, and the first that I have seen it. To-day was acted the second part of “The Siege of Rhodes.” We staid a very great while for the King and the Queen of Bohemia. And by the breaking of a board over our heads, we had a great deal of dust fell into the ladies’ necks and the men’s hair, which made good sport. The King being come, the scene opened; which indeed is very fine and magnificent, and well acted, all but the Eunuch, who was so much out that he was hissed off the stage. Home and wrote letters to my Lord at sea, and so to bed.

3rd. To Westminster to Mr. Edward Montagu about business of my Lord’s, and so to the Wardrobe, and there dined with my Lady, who is in some mourning for her brother, Mr. Saml. Crew, who died yesterday of the spotted fever. So home through Duck Lane’ to inquire for some Spanish books, but found none that pleased me. So to the office, and that being done to Sir W. Batten’s with the Comptroller, where we sat late talking and disputing with Mr. Mills the parson of our parish. This day my Lady Batten and my wife were at the burial of a daughter of Sir John Lawson’s, and had rings for themselves and their husbands. Home and to bed.

4th. At home all the morning; in the afternoon I went to the Theatre, and there I saw “Claracilla” (the first time I ever saw it), well acted. But strange to see this house, that used to be so thronged, now empty since the Opera begun; and so will continue for a while, I believe. Called at my father’s, and there I heard that my uncle Robert —[Robert Pepys, of Brampton, who died on the following day.]— continues to have his fits of stupefaction every day for 10 or 12 hours together. From thence to the Exchange at night, and then went with my uncle Wight to the Mitre and were merry, but he takes it very ill that my father would go out of town to Brampton on this occasion and would not tell him of it, which I endeavoured to remove but could not. Here Mr. Batersby the apothecary was, who told me that if my uncle had the emerods —[Haemorrhoids or piles.]—(which I think he had) and that now they are stopped, he will lay his life that bleeding behind by leeches will cure him, but I am resolved not to meddle in it. Home and to bed.

5th. At home, and in the afternoon to the office, and that being done all went to Sir W. Batten’s and there had a venison pasty, and were very merry. At night home and to bed.

6th. Waked this morning with news, brought me by a messenger on purpose, that my uncle Robert is dead, and died yesterday; so I rose sorry in some respect, glad in my expectations in another respect. So I made myself ready, went and told my uncle Wight, my Lady, and some others thereof, and bought me a pair of boots in St. Martin’s, and got myself ready, and then to the Post House and set out about eleven and twelve o’clock, taking the messenger with me that came to me, and so we rode and got well by nine o’clock to Brampton, where I found my father well. My uncle’s corps in a coffin standing upon joynt-stools in the chimney in the hall; but it begun to smell, and so I caused it to be set forth in the yard all night, and watched by two men. My aunt I found in bed in a most nasty ugly pickle, made me sick to see it. My father and I lay together tonight, I greedy to see the will, but did not ask to see it till tomorrow.

7th (Lord’s day). In the morning my father and I walked in the garden and read the will; where, though he gives me nothing at present till my father’s death, or at least very little, yet I am glad to see that he hath done so well for us, all, and well to the rest of his kindred. After that done, we went about getting things, as ribbands and gloves, ready for the burial. Which in the afternoon was done; where, it being Sunday, all people far and near come in; and in the greatest disorder that ever I saw, we made shift to serve them what we had of wine and other things; and then to carry him to the church, where Mr. Taylor buried him, and Mr. Turners preached a funerall sermon, where he spoke not particularly of him anything, but that he was one so well known for his honesty, that it spoke for itself above all that he could say for it. And so made a very good sermon. Home with some of the company who supped there, and things being quiet, at night to bed.

8th, 9th, Loth, 11th, 12th, 13th. I fell to work, and my father to look over my uncle’s papers and clothes, and continued all this week upon that business, much troubled with my aunt’s base, ugly humours. We had news of Tom Trice’s putting in a caveat against us, in behalf of his mother, to whom my uncle hath not given anything, and for good reason therein expressed, which troubled us also. But above all, our trouble is to find that his estate appears nothing as we expected, and all the world believes; nor his papers so well sorted as I would have had them, but all in confusion, that break my brains to understand them. We missed also the surrenders of his copyhold land, without which the land would not come to us, but to the heir at law, so that what with this, and the badness of the drink and the ill opinion I have of the meat, and the biting of the gnats by night and my disappointment in getting home this week, and the trouble of sorting all the papers, I am almost out of my wits with trouble, only I appear the more contented, because I would not have my father troubled. The latter end of the week Mr. Philips comes home from London, and so we advised with him and have the best counsel he could give us, but for all that we were not quiet in our minds.

14th (Lord’s day). At home, and Robert Barnwell with us, and dined, and in the evening my father and I walked round Portholme and viewed all the fields, which was very pleasant. Thence to Hinchingbroke, which is now all in dirt, because of my Lord’s building, which will make it very magnificent. Back to Brampton, and to supper and to bed.

15th. Up by three o’clock this morning, and rode to Cambridge, and was there by seven o’clock, where, after I was trimmed, I went to Christ College, and found my brother John at eight o’clock in bed, which vexed me. Then to King’s College chappell, where I found the scholars in their surplices at the service with the organs, which is a strange sight to what it used in my time to be here. Then with Dr. Fairbrother (whom I met there) to the Rose tavern, and called for some wine, and there met fortunately with Mr. Turner of our office, and sent for his wife, and were very merry (they being come to settle their son here), and sent also for Mr. Sanchy, of Magdalen, with whom and other gentlemen, friends of his, we were very merry, and I treated them as well as I could, and so at noon took horse again, having taken leave of my cozen Angier, and rode to Impington, where I found my old uncle1 sitting all alone, like a man out of the world: he can hardly see; but all things else he do pretty livelyly. Then with Dr. John Pepys and him, I read over the will, and had their advice therein, who, as to the sufficiency thereof confirmed me, and advised me as to the other parts thereof. Having done there, I rode to Gravely with much ado to inquire for a surrender of my uncle’s in some of the copyholders’ hands there, but I can hear of none, which puts me into very great trouble of mind, and so with a sad heart rode home to Brampton, but made myself as cheerful as I could to my father, and so to bed.

1 Talbot Pepys, sixth son of John Pepys of Impington, was born 1583, and therefore at this time he was seventy-eight years of age. He was educated at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and called to the bar at the Middle Temple in 1605. He was M.P. for Cambridge in 1625, and Recorder of Cambridge from 1624 to 1660, in which year he was succeeded by his son Roger. He died of the plague, March, 1666, aged eighty-three.

16th, 17th, 18th, 19th. These four days we spent in putting things in order, letting of the crop upon the ground, agreeing with Stankes to have a care of our business in our absence, and we think ourselves in nothing happy but in lighting upon him to be our bayly; in riding to Offord and Sturtlow, and up and down all our lands, and in the evening walking, my father and I about the fields talking, and had advice from Mr. Moore from London, by my desire, that the three witnesses of the will being all legatees, will not do the will any wrong. To-night Serjeant Bernard, I hear, is come home into the country. To supper and to bed. My aunt continuing in her base, hypocritical tricks, which both Jane Perkin (of whom we make great use), and the maid do tell us every day of.

20th. Up to Huntingdon this morning to Sir Robert Bernard, with whom I met Jaspar Trice. So Sir Robert caused us to sit down together and began discourse very fairly between us, so I drew out the Will and show it him, and [he] spoke between us as well as I could desire, but could come to no issue till Tom Trice comes. Then Sir Robert and I fell to talk about the money due to us upon surrender from Piggott, £164., which he tells me will go with debts to the heir at law, which breaks my heart on the other side. Here I staid and dined with Sir Robert Bernard and his lady, my Lady Digby, a very good woman. After dinner I went into the town and spent the afternoon, sometimes with Mr. Phillips, sometimes with Dr. Symcottes, Mr. Vinter, Robert Ethell, and many more friends, and at last Mr. Davenport, Phillips, Jaspar Trice, myself and others at Mother ——— over against the Crown we sat and drank ale and were very merry till 9 at night, and so broke up. I walked home, and there found Tom Trice come, and he and my father gone to Goody Gorum’s, where I found them and Jaspar Trice got before me, and Mr. Greene, and there had some calm discourse, but came to no issue, and so parted. So home and to bed, being now pretty well again of my left hand, which lately was stung and very much swelled.

21st (Lord’s day). At home all the morning, putting my papers in order against my going tomorrow and doing many things else to that end. Had a good dinner, and Stankes and his wife with us. To my business again in the afternoon, and in the evening came the two Trices, Mr. Greene, and Mr. Philips, and so we began to argue. At last it came to some agreement that for our giving of my aunt £10 she is to quit the house, and for other matters they are to be left to the law, which do please us all, and so we broke up, pretty well satisfyed. Then came Mr. Barnwell and J. Bowles and supped with us, and after supper away, and so I having taken leave of them and put things in the best order I could against tomorrow I went to bed. Old William Luffe having been here this afternoon and paid up his bond of £20, and I did give him into his hand my uncle’s surrender of Sturtlow to me before Mr. Philips, R. Barnwell, and Mr. Pigott, which he did acknowledge to them my uncle did in his lifetime deliver to him.

22nd. Up by three, and going by four on my way to London; but the day proves very cold, so that having put on no stockings but thread ones under my boots, I was fain at Bigglesworth to buy a pair of coarse woollen ones, and put them on. So by degrees till I come to Hatfield before twelve o’clock, where I had a very good dinner with my hostess, at my Lord of Salisbury’s Inn, and after dinner though weary I walked all alone to the Vineyard, which is now a very beautiful place again; and coming back I met with Mr. Looker, my Lord’s gardener (a friend of Mr. Eglin’s), who showed me the house, the chappell with brave pictures, and, above all, the gardens, such as I never saw in all my life; nor so good flowers, nor so great gooseberrys, as big as nutmegs. Back to the inn, and drank with him, and so to horse again, and with much ado got to London, and set him up at Smithfield; so called at my uncle Fenner’s, my mother’s, my Lady’s, and so home, in all which I found all things as well as I could expect. So weary and to bed.

23rd. Put on my mourning. Made visits to Sir W. Pen and Batten. Then to Westminster, and at the Hall staid talking with Mrs. Michell a good while, and in the afternoon, finding myself unfit for business, I went to the Theatre, and saw “Brenoralt,” I never saw before. It seemed a good play, but ill acted; only I sat before Mrs. Palmer, the King’s mistress, and filled my eyes with her, which much pleased me. Then to my father’s, where by my desire I met my uncle Thomas, and discoursed of my uncle’s will to him, and did satisfy [him] as well as I could. So to my uncle Wight’s, but found him out of doors, but my aunt I saw and staid a while, and so home and to bed. Troubled to hear how proud and idle Pall is grown, that I am resolved not to keep her.

24th. This morning my wife in bed tells me of our being robbed of our silver tankard, which vexed me all day for the negligence of my people to leave the door open. My wife and I by water to Whitehall, where I left her to her business and I to my cozen Thomas Pepys, and discoursed with him at large about our business of my uncle’s will. He can give us no light at all into his estate, but upon the whole tells me that he do believe that he has left but little money, though something more than we have found, which is about £500. Here came Sir G. Lane by chance, seeing a bill upon the door to hire the house, with whom my coz and I walked all up and down, and indeed it is a very pretty place, and he do intend to leave the agreement for the House, which is £400 fine, and £46 rent a year to me between them. Then to the Wardrobe, but come too late, and so dined with the servants. And then to my Lady, who do shew my wife and me the greatest favour in the world, in which I take great content. Home by water and to the office all the afternoon, which is a great pleasure to me again, to talk with persons of quality and to be in command, and I give it out among them that the estate left me is £200 a year in land, besides moneys, because I would put an esteem upon myself. At night home and to bed after I had set down my journals ever since my going from London this journey to this house. This afternoon I hear that my man Will hath lost his clock with my tankard, at which I am very glad.

25th. This morning came my box of papers from Brampton of all my uncle’s papers, which will now set me at work enough. At noon I went to the Exchange, where I met my uncle Wight, and found him so discontented about my father (whether that he takes it ill that he has not been acquainted with things, or whether he takes it ill that he has nothing left him, I cannot tell), for which I am much troubled, and so staid not long to talk with him. Thence to my mother’s, where I found my wife and my aunt Bell and Mrs. Ramsey, and great store of tattle there was between the old women and my mother, who thinks that there is, God knows what fallen to her, which makes me mad, but it was not a proper time to speak to her of it, and so I went away with Mr. Moore, and he and I to the Theatre, and saw “The Jovial Crew,” the first time I saw it, and indeed it is as merry and the most innocent play that ever I saw, and well performed. From thence home, and wrote to my father and so to bed. Full of thoughts to think of the trouble that we shall go through before we come to see what will remain to us of all our expectations.

26th. At home all the morning, and walking met with Mr. Hill of Cambridge at Pope’s Head Alley with some women with him whom he took and me into the tavern there, and did give us wine, and would fain seem to be very knowing in the affairs of state, and tells me that yesterday put a change to the whole state of England as to the Church; for the King now would be forced to favour Presbytery, or the City would leave him: but I heed not what he says, though upon enquiry I do find that things in the Parliament are in a great disorder. Home at noon and there found Mr. Moore, and with him to an ordinary alone and dined, and there he and I read my uncle’s will, and I had his opinion on it, and still find more and more trouble like to attend it. Back to the office all the afternoon, and that done home for all night. Having the beginning of this week made a vow to myself to drink no wine this week (finding it to unfit me to look after business), and this day breaking of it against my will, I am much troubled for it, but I hope God will forgive me.

27th. To Westminster, where at Mr. Montagu’s chamber I heard a Frenchman play, a friend of Monsieur Eschar’s, upon the guitar, most extreme well, though at the best methinks it is but a bawble. From thence to Westminster Hall, where it was expected that the Parliament was to have been adjourned for two or three months, but something hinders it for a day or two. In the lobby I spoke with Mr. George Montagu, and advised about a ship to carry my Lord Hinchingbroke and the rest of the young gentlemen to France, and they have resolved of going in a hired vessell from Rye, and not in a man of war. He told me in discourse that my Lord Chancellor is much envied, and that many great men, such as the Duke of Buckingham and my Lord of Bristoll, do endeavour to undermine him, and that he believes it will not be done; for that the King (though he loves him not in the way of a companion, as he do these young gallants that can answer him in his pleasures), yet cannot be without him, for his policy and service. From thence to the Wardrobe, where my wife met me, it being my Lord of Sandwich’s birthday, and so we had many friends here, Mr. Townsend and his wife, and Captain Ferrers lady and Captain Isham, and were very merry, and had a good venison pasty. Mr. Pargiter, the merchant, was with us also. After dinner Mr. Townsend was called upon by Captain Cooke: so we three went to a tavern hard by, and there he did give us a song or two; and without doubt he hath the best manner of singing in the world. Back to my wife, and with my Lady Jem. and Pall by water through bridge, and showed them the ships with great pleasure, and then took them to my house to show it them (my Lady their mother having been lately all alone to see it and my wife, in my absence in the country), and we treated them well, and were very merry. Then back again through bridge, and set them safe at home, and so my wife and I by coach home again, and after writing a letter to my father at Brampton, who, poor man, is there all alone, and I have not heard from him since my coming from him, which troubles me. To bed.

28th (Lord’s day). This morning as my wife and I were going to church, comes Mrs. Ramsay to see us, so we sent her to church, and we went too, and came back to dinner, and she dined with us and was wellcome. To church again in the afternoon, and then come home with us Sir W. Pen, and drank with us, and then went away, and my wife after him to see his daughter that is lately come out of Ireland. I staid at home at my book; she came back again and tells me that whereas I expected she should have been a great beauty, she is a very plain girl. This evening my wife gives me all my linen, which I have put up, and intend to keep it now in my own custody. To supper and to bed.

29th. This morning we began again to sit in the mornings at the office, but before we sat down. Sir R. Slingsby and I went to Sir R. Ford’s to see his house, and we find it will be very convenient for us to have it added to the office if he can be got to part with it. Then we sat down and did business in the office. So home to dinner, and my brother Tom dined with me, and after dinner he and I alone in my chamber had a great deal of talk, and I find that unless my father can forbear to make profit of his house in London and leave it to Tom, he has no mind to set up the trade any where else, and so I know not what to do with him. After this I went with him to my mother, and there told her how things do fall out short of our expectations, which I did (though it be true) to make her leave off her spending, which I find she is nowadays very free in, building upon what is left to us by my uncle to bear her out in it, which troubles me much. While I was here word is brought that my aunt Fenner is exceeding ill, and that my mother is sent for presently to come to her: also that my cozen Charles Glassecocke, though very ill himself, is this day gone to the country to his brother, John Glassecocke, who is a-dying there. Home.

30th. After my singing-master had done with me this morning, I went to White Hall and Westminster Hall, where I found the King expected to come and adjourn the Parliament. I found the two Houses at a great difference, about the Lords challenging their privileges not to have their houses searched, which makes them deny to pass the House of Commons’ Bill for searching for pamphlets and seditious books. Thence by water to the Wardrobe (meeting the King upon the water going in his barge to adjourn the House) where I dined with my Lady, and there met Dr. Thomas Pepys, who I found to be a silly talking fellow, but very good-natured. So home to the office, where we met about the business of Tangier this afternoon. That done, at home I found Mr. Moore, and he and I walked into the City and there parted. To Fleet Street to find when the Assizes begin at Cambridge and Huntingdon, in order to my going to meet with Roger Pepys for counsel. So in Fleet Street I met with Mr. Salisbury, who is now grown in less than two years’ time so great a limner — that he is become excellent, and gets a great deal of money at it. I took him to Hercules Pillars to drink, and there came Mr. Whore (whom I formerly have known), a friend of his to him, who is a very ingenious fellow, and there I sat with them a good while, and so home and wrote letters late to my Lord and to my father, and then to bed.

31st. Singing-master came to me this morning; then to the office all the morning. In the afternoon I went to the Theatre, and there I saw “The Tamer Tamed” well done. And then home, and prepared to go to Walthamstow tomorrow. This night I was forced to borrow £40 of Sir W. Batten.

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