The Diary of Samuel Pepys, by Samuel Pepys

February 1661–1662

February 1st. This morning within till 11 o’clock, and then with Commissioner Pett to the office; and he staid there writing, while I and Sir W. Pen walked in the garden talking about his business of putting his son to Cambridge; and to that end I intend to write to-night to Dr. Fairebrother, to give me an account of Mr. Burton of Magdalene. Thence with Mr. Pett to the Paynter’s; and he likes our pictures very well, and so do I. Thence he and I to the Countess of Sandwich, to lead him to her to kiss her hands: and dined with her, and told her the news (which Sir W. Pen told me today) that express is come from my Lord with letters, that by a great storm and tempest the mole of Argier is broken down, and many of their ships sunk into the mole. So that God Almighty hath now ended that unlucky business for us; which is very good news. After dinner to the office, where we staid late, and so I home, and late writing letters to my father and Dr. Fairebrother, and an angry letter to my brother John for not writing to me, and so to bed.

2nd (Lord’s day). To church in the morning, and then home and dined with my wife, and so both of us to church again, where we had an Oxford man give us a most impertinent sermon upon “Cast your bread upon the waters, &c. So home to read, supper, and to prayers, and then to bed.

3rd. After musique practice I went to the office, and there with the two Sir Williams all the morning about business, and at noon I dined with Sir W. Batten with many friends more, it being his wedding-day, and among other froliques, it being their third year, they had three pyes, whereof the middlemost was made of an ovall form, in an ovall hole within the other two, which made much mirth, and was called the middle piece; and above all the rest, we had great striving to steal a spooneful out of it; and I remember Mrs. Mills, the minister’s wife, did steal one for me and did give it me; and to end all, Mrs. Shippman did fill the pye full of white wine, it holding at least a pint and a half, and did drink it off for a health to Sir William and my Lady, it being the greatest draft that ever I did see a woman drink in my life. Before we had dined came Sir G. Carteret, and we went all three to the office and did business there till night, and then to Sir W. Batten again, and I went along with my lady and the rest of the gentlewomen to Major Holmes’s, and there we had a fine supper, among others, excellent lobsters, which I never eat at this time of the year before. The Major bath good lodgings at the Trinity House. Here we staid, and at last home, and, being in my chamber, we do hear great noise of mirth at Sir William Batten’s, tearing the ribbands from my Lady and him. —[As if they were a newly-married couple.]— So I to bed.

4th. To Westminster Hall, where it was full term. Here all the morning, and at noon to my Lord Crew’s, where one Mr. Tempter (an ingenious man and a person of honour he seems to be) dined; and, discoursing of the nature of serpents, he told us some that in the waste places of Lancashire do grow to a great bigness, and that do feed upon larks, which they take thus: They observe when the lark is soared to the highest, and do crawl till they come to be just underneath them; and there they place themselves with their mouths uppermost, and there, as is conceived, they do eject poyson up to the bird; for the bird do suddenly come down again in its course of a circle, and falls directly into the mouth of the serpent; which is very strange. He is a great traveller; and, speaking of the tarantula, he says that all the harvest long (about which times they are most busy) there are fidlers go up and down the fields every where, in expectation of being hired by those that are stung. Thence to the office, where late, and so to my chamber and then to bed, my mind a little troubled how to put things in order to my advantage in the office in readiness to the Duke’s orders lately sent to us, and of which we are to treat at the office tomorrow morning. This afternoon, going into the office, one met me and did serve a subpoena upon me for one Field, whom we did commit to prison the other day for some ill words he did give the office. The like he had for others, but we shall scour him for it.

5th. Early at the office. Sir G. Carteret, the two Sir Williams and myself all alone reading of the Duke’s institutions for the settlement of our office, whereof we read as much as concerns our own duties, and left the other officers for another time. I did move several things for my purpose, and did ease my mind. At noon Sir W. Pen dined with me, and after dinner he and I and my wife to the Theatre, and went in, but being very early we went out again to the next door, and drank some Rhenish wine and sugar, and so to the House again, and there saw “Rule a Wife and have a Wife” very well done. And here also I did look long upon my Lady Castlemaine, who, notwithstanding her late sickness, continues a great beauty. Home and supped with Sir W. Pen and played at cards with him, and so home and to bed, putting some cataplasm to my. . . . which begins to swell again.

6th. At my musique practice, and so into my cellar to my workmen, and I am very much pleased with my alteracon there. About noon comes my uncle Thomas to me to ask for his annuity, and I did tell him my mind freely. We had some high words, but I was willing to end all in peace, and so I made him’ dine with me, and I have hopes to work my end upon him. After dinner the barber trimmed me, and so to the office, where I do begin to be exact in my duty there and exacting my privileges, and shall continue to do so. None but Sir W. Batten and me here to-night, and so we broke up early, and I home and to my chamber to put things in order, and so to bed. My swelling I think do begin to go away again.

7th. Among my workmen this morning. By and by by water to Westminster with Commissioner Pett (landing my wife at Black Friars) where I hear the prisoners in the Tower that are to die are come to the Parliament-house this morning. To the Wardrobe to dinner with my Lady; where a civitt cat, parrot, apes, and many other things are come from my Lord by Captain Hill, who dined with my Lady with us today. Thence to the Paynter’s, and am well pleased with our pictures. So by coach home, where I found the joyners putting up my chimney-piece in the dining-room, which pleases me well, only the frame for a picture they have made so massy and heavy that I cannot tell what to do with it. This evening came my she cozen Porter to see us (the first time that we had seen her since we came to this end of the town) and after her Mr. Hart, who both staid with us a pretty while and so went away. By and by, hearing that Mr. Turner was much troubled at what I do in the office, and do give ill words to Sir W. Pen and others of me, I am much troubled in my mind, and so went to bed; not that I fear him at all, but the natural aptness I have to be troubled at any thing that crosses me.

8th. All the morning in the cellar with the colliers, removing the coles out of the old cole hole into the new one, which cost me 8s. the doing; but now the cellar is done and made clean, it do please me exceedingly, as much as any thing that was ever yet done to my house. I pray God keep me from setting my mind too much upon it. About 3 o’clock the colliers having done I went up to dinner (my wife having often urged me to come, but my mind is so set upon these things that I cannot but be with the workmen to see things done to my mind, which if I am not there is seldom done), and so to the office, and thence to talk with Sir W. Pen, walking in the dark in the garden some turns, he telling me of the ill management of our office, and how Wood the timber merchant and others were very knaves, which I am apt to believe. Home and wrote letters to my father and my brother John, and so to bed. Being a little chillish, intending to take physique tomorrow morning.

9th (Lord’s day). I took physique this day, and was all day in my chamber, talking with my wife about her laying out of £20, which I had long since promised her to lay out in clothes against Easter for herself, and composing some ayres, God forgive me! At night to prayers and to bed.

10th. Musique practice a good while, then to Paul’s Churchyard, and there I met with Dr. Fuller’s “England’s Worthys,” the first time that I ever saw it; and so I sat down reading in it, till it was two o’clock before I, thought of the time going, and so I rose and went home to dinner, being much troubled that (though he had some discourse with me about my family and arms) he says nothing at all, nor mentions us either in Cambridgeshire or Norfolk. But I believe, indeed, our family were never considerable. At home all the afternoon, and at night to bed.

11th. Musique, then my brother Tom came, and spoke to him about selling of Sturtlow, he consents to, and I think will be the best for him, considering that he needs money, and has no mind to marry. Dined at home, and at the office in the afternoon. So home to musique, my mind being full of our alteracons in the garden, and my getting of things in the office settled to the advantage of my clerks, which I found Mr. Turner much troubled at, and myself am not quiet in mind. But I hope by degrees to bring it to it. At night begun to compose songs, and begin with “Gaze not on Swans.” So to bed.

12th. This morning, till four in the afternoon, I spent abroad, doing of many and considerable businesses at Mr. Phillips the lawyer, with Prior, Westminster, my Lord Crew’s, Wardrobe, &c., and so home about the time of day to dinner with my mind very highly contented with my day’s work, wishing I could do so every day. Then to my chamber drawing up writings, in expectation of my uncle Thomas coming. So to my musique and then to bed. This night I had half a 100 poor Jack —[The “poor john” is a hake salted and dried. It is frequently referred to in old authors as poor fare.]— sent me by Mr. Adis.

13th. After musique comes my cozen Tom Pepys the executor, and he did stay with me above two hours discoursing about the difference between my uncle Thomas and me, and what way there may be to make it up, and I have hopes we may do good of it for all this. Then to dinner, and then came Mr. Kennard, and he and I and Sir W. Pen went up and down his house to view what may be the contrivance and alterations there to the best advantage. So home, where Mr. Blackburne (whom I have not seen a long time) was come to speak with me, and among other discourse he do tell me plain of the corruption of all our Treasurer’s officers, and that they hardly pay any money under ten per cent.; and that the other day, for a mere assignation of £200 to some counties, they took £15 which is very strange. So to the office till night, and then home and to write by the post about many businesses, and so to bed. Last night died the Queen of Bohemia.

14th (Valentine’s day). I did this day purposely shun to be seen at Sir W. Batten’s, because I would not have his daughter to be my Valentine, as she was the last year, there being no great friendship between us now, as formerly. This morning in comes W. Bowyer, who was my wife’s Valentine, she having, at which I made good sport to myself, held her hands all the morning, that she might not see the paynters that were at work in gilding my chimney-piece and pictures in my diningroom. By and by she and I by coach with him to Westminster, by the way leaving at Tom’s and my wife’s father’s lodgings each of them some poor Jack, and some she carried to my father Bowyer’s, where she staid while I walked in the Hall, and there among others met with Serj’. Pierce, and I took him aside to drink a cup of ale, and he told me the basest thing of Mr. Montagu’s and his man Eschar’s going away in debt, that I am troubled and ashamed, but glad to be informed of. He thinks he has left £1000 for my Lord to pay, and that he has not laid out £3,000 Out of the £5,000 for my Lord’s use, and is not able to make an account of any of the money. My wife and I to dinner to the Wardrobe, and then to talk with my Lady, and so by coach, it raining hard, home, and so to do business and to bed.

15th. With the two Sir Williams to the Trinity-house; and there in their society had the business debated of Sir Nicholas Crisp’s sasse at Deptford. Then to dinner, and after dinner I was sworn a Younger Brother; Sir W. Rider being Deputy Master for my Lord of Sandwich; and after I was sworn, all the Elder Brothers shake me by the hand: it is their custom, it seems. Hence to the office, and so to Sir Wm. Batten’s all three, and there we staid till late talking together in complaint of the Treasurer’s instruments. Above all Mr. Waith, at whose child’s christening our wives and we should have been today, but none of them went and I am glad of it, for he is a very rogue, So home, and drew up our report for Sir N. Crispe’s sasse, and so to bed. No news yet of our fleet gone to Tangier, which we now begin to think long.

16th (Lord’s day). To church this morning, and so home and to dinner. In the afternoon I walked to St. Bride’s to church, to hear Dr. Jacomb preach upon the recovery, and at the request of Mrs. Turner, who came abroad this day, the first time since her long sickness. He preached upon David’s words, “I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord,” and made a pretty good sermon, though not extraordinary. After sermon I led her home, and sat with her, and there was the Dr. got before us; but strange what a command he hath got over Mrs. Turner, who was so carefull to get him what he would, after his preaching, to drink, and he, with a cunning gravity, knows how to command, and had it, and among other things told us that he heard more of the Common Prayer this afternoon (while he stood in the vestry, before he went up into the pulpitt) than he had heard this twenty years. Thence to my uncle Wight to meet my wife, and with other friends of hers and his met by chance we were very merry, and supped, and so home, not being very well through my usual pain got by cold. So to prayers and to bed, and there had a good draft of mulled ale brought me.

17th. This morning, both Sir Williams, myself, and Captain Cocke and Captain Tinker of the Convertine, which we are going to look upon (being intended to go with these ships fitting for the East Indys), down to Deptford; and thence, after being on shipboard, to Woolwich, and there eat something. The Sir Williams being unwilling to eat flesh,1 Captain Cocke and I had a breast of veal roasted. And here I drank wine upon necessity, being ill for want of it, and I find reason to fear that by my too sudden leaving off wine, I do contract many evils upon myself. Going and coming we played at gleeke, and I won 9s. 6d. clear, the most that ever I won in my life. I pray God it may not tempt me to play again. Being come home again we went to the Dolphin, where Mr. Alcock and my Lady and Mrs. Martha Batten came to us, and after them many others (as it always is where Sir W. Batten goes), and there we had some pullets to supper. I eat though I was not very well, and after that left them, and so home and to bed.

1 In Lent, of which the observance, intermitted for nineteen years, was now reviving. We have seen that Pepys, as yet, had not cast off all show of Puritanism. “In this month the Fishmongers’ Company petitioned the King that Lent might be kept, because they had provided abundance of fish for this season, and their prayer was granted.”— Rugge. — B.

18th. Lay long in bed, then up to the office (we having changed our days to Tuesday and Saturday in the morning and Thursday at night), and by and by with Sir W. Pen, Mr. Kennard, and others to survey his house again, and to contrive for the alterations there, which will be handsome I think. After we had done at the office, I walked to the Wardrobe, where with Mr. Moore and Mr. Lewis Phillips after dinner we did agree upon the agreement between us and Prior and I did seal and sign it. Having agreed with Sir Wm. Pen and my wife to meet them at the Opera, and finding by my walking in the streets, which were every where full of brick-battes and tyles flung down by the extraordinary wind the last night (such as hath not been in memory before, unless at the death of the late Protector), that it was dangerous to go out of doors; and hearing how several persons had been killed today by the fall of things in the streets, and that the pageant in Fleetstreet is most of it blown down, and hath broke down part of several houses, among others Dick Brigden’s; and that one Lady Sanderson, a person of quality in Covent Garden, was killed by the fall of the house, in her bed, last night; I sent my boy home to forbid them to go forth. But he bringing me word that they are gone, I went thither and there saw “The Law against Lovers,” a good play and well performed, especially the little girl’s (whom I never saw act before) dancing and singing; and were it not for her, the loss of Roxalana would spoil the house. So home and to musique, and so to bed.

19th. Musique practice: thence to the Trinity House to conclude upon our report of Sir N. Crisp’s project, who came to us to answer objections, but we did give him no ear, but are resolved to stand to our report; though I could wish we had shewn him more justice and had heard him. Thence to the Wardrobe and dined with my Lady, and talked after dinner as I used to do, and so home and up to my chamber to put things in order to my good content, and so to musique practice.

20th. This morning came Mr. Child to see me, and set me something to my Theorbo, and by and by come letters from Tangier from my Lord, telling me how, upon a great defete given to the Portuguese there by the Moors, he had put in 300 men into the town, and so he is in possession, of which we are very glad, because now the Spaniard’s designs of hindering our getting the place are frustrated. I went with the letter inclosed to my Lord Chancellor to the House of Lords, and did give it him in the House. And thence to the Wardrobe with my Lady’s, and there could not stay dinner, but went by promise to Mr. Savill’s, and there sat the first time for my picture in little, which pleaseth me well. So to the office till night and then home.1

1 “Sunday, Jan. 12. This morning, the Portuguese, 140 horse in Tangier, made a salley into the country for booty, whereof they had possessed about 400 cattle, 30 camels, and some horses, and 35 women and girls, and being six miles distant from Tangier, were intercepted by 100 Moors with harquebusses, who in the first charge killed the Aidill with a shot in the head, whereupon the rest of the Portuguese ran, and in the pursuit 51 were slain, whereof were 11 of the knights, besides the Aidill. The horses of the 51 were also taken by the Moors, and all the booty relieved.

“Tuesday, Jan. 14. This morning, Mr. Mules came to me from the Governor, for the assistance of some of our men into the castle.

“Thursday, Jan. 16. About 80 men out of my own ship, and the Princess, went into Tangier, into the lower castle, about four of the clock in the afternoon.

“Friday, Jan. 17. In the morning, by eight o’clock, the ‘Martyr’ came in from Cales (Cadiz) with provisions, and about ten a clock I sent Sir Richard Stayner, with 120 men, besides officers, to the assistance of the Governor, into Tangier.”— Lord Sandwich’s Journal, in Kennet’s Register.

On the 23rd, Lord Sandwich put one hundred more men into Tangier; on the 29th and 30th, Lord Peterborough and his garrison arrived from England, and received possession from the Portuguese; and, on the 31st, Sir Richard Stayner and the seamen reembarked on board Lord Sandwich’s fleet. — B.

21st. All the morning putting things in my house in order, and packing up glass to send into the country to my father, and books to my brother John, and then to my Lord Crew’s to dinner; and thence to Mr. Lewes Philip’s chamber, and there at noon with him for business, and received £80 upon Jaspar Trice’s account, and so home with it, and so to my chamber for all this evening, and then to bed.

22nd. At the office busy all the morning, and thence to dinner to my Lady Sandwich’s, and thence with Mr. Moore to our Attorney, Wellpoole’s, and there found that Godfry has basely taken out a judgment against us for the £40, for which I am vexed. And thence to buy a pair of stands and a hanging shelf for my wife’s chamber, and so home, and thither came Mr. Savill with the pictures, and we hung them up in our dining-room. It comes now to appear very handsome with all my pictures. This evening I wrote letters to my father; among other things acquainting him with the unhappy accident which hath happened lately to my Lord of Dorset’s two oldest sons, who, with two Belasses and one Squire Wentworth, were lately apprehended for killing and robbing of a tanner about Newington’ on Wednesday last, and are all now in Newgate. I am much troubled for it, and for the grief and disgrace it brings to their familys and friends. After this, having got a very great cold, I got something warm to-night, and so to bed.

23rd (Lord’s day). My cold being increased, I staid at home all day, pleasing myself with my dining-room, now graced with pictures, and reading of Dr. Fuller’s “Worthys.” So I spent the day, and at night comes Sir W. Pen and supped and talked with me. This day by God’s mercy I am 29 years of age, and in very good health, and like to live and get an estate; and if I have a heart to be contented, I think I may reckon myself as happy a man as any is in the world, for which God be praised. So to prayers and to bed.

24th. Long with Mr. Berkenshaw in the morning at my musique practice; finishing my song of “Gaze not on Swans,” in two parts, which pleases me well, and I did give him £5 for this month or five weeks that he hath taught me, which is a great deal of money and troubled me to part with it. Thence to the Paynter s, and set again for my picture in little, and thence over the water to Southwark to Mr. Berkenshaw’s house, and there sat with him all the afternoon, he showing me his great card of the body of musique, which he cries up for a rare thing, and I do believe it cost much pains, but is not so useful as he would have it. Then we sat down and set “Nulla, nulla sit formido,” and he has set it very finely. So home and to supper, and then called Will up, and chid him before my wife for refusing to go to church with the maids yesterday, and telling his mistress that he would not be made a slave of, which vexes me. So to bed.

25th. All the morning at the office. At noon with Mr. Moore to the Coffee-house, where among other things the great talk was of the effects of this late great wind; and I heard one say that he had five great trees standing together blown down; and, beginning to lop them, one of them, as soon as the lops were cut off, did, by the weight of the root, rise again and fasten. We have letters from the forest of Deane, that above 1000 Oakes and as many beeches are blown down in one walk there. And letters from my father tell me of £20 hurt done to us at Brampton. This day in the news-book I find that my Lord Buckhurst and his fellows have printed their case as they did give it in upon examination to a justice of Peace, wherein they make themselves a very good tale that they were in pursuit of thieves, and that they took this man for one of them, and so killed him; and that he himself confessed it was the first time of his robbing; and that he did pay dearly for it, for he was a dead man. But I doubt things will be proved otherwise, as they say. Home to dinner, and by and by comes Mr. Hunt and his wife to see us and staid a good, while with us. Then parted, and I to my study in the office. The first time since the alteracon that I have begun to do business myself there, and I think I shall be well pleased with it. At night home to supper and to bed.

26th. Mr. Berkenshaw with me all the morning composing of musique to “This cursed jealousy, what is it,” a song of Sir W. Davenant’s. After dinner I went to my Bookseller’s, W. Joyce’s, and several other places to pay my debts and do business, I being resolved to cast up my accounts within a day or two, for I fear I have run out too far. In coming home I met with a face I knew and challenged him, thinking it had been one of the Theatre musicians, and did enquire for a song of him, but finding it a mistake, and that it was a gentleman that comes sometimes to the office, I was much ashamed, but made a pretty good excuse that I took him for a gentleman of Gray’s Inn who sings well, and so parted. Home for all night and set things in order and so to bed.

27th. This morning came Mr. Berkenshaw to me and in our discourse I, finding that he cries up his rules for most perfect (though I do grant them to be very good, and the best I believe that ever yet were made), and that I could not persuade him to grant wherein they were somewhat lame, we fell to angry words, so that in a pet he flung out of my chamber and I never stopped him, having intended to put him off today, whether this had happened or no, because I think I have all the rules that he hath to give. And so there remains not the practice now to do me good, and it is not for me to continue with him at; £5 per month. So I settled to put all his rules in fair order in a book, which was my work all the morning till dinner. After dinner to the office till late at night, and so home to write by the post, and so to bed.

28th. The boy failing to call us up as I commanded, I was angry, and resolved to whip him for that and many other faults, today. Early with Sir W. Pen by coach to Whitehall, to the Duke of York’s chamber, and there I presented him from my Lord a fine map of Tangier, done by one Captain Beckman, a Swede, that is with my Lord. We staid looking it over a great while with the Duke after he was ready. Thence I by water to the Painter’s, and there sat again for my face in little, and thence home to dinner, and so at home all the afternoon. Then came Mr. Moore and staid and talked with me, and then I to the office, there being all the Admiralty papers brought hither this afternoon from Mr. Blackburne’s, where they have lain all this while ever since my coming into this office. This afternoon Mr. Hater received half a year’s salary for me, so that now there is not owing me but this quarter, which will be out the next month. Home, and to be as good as my word, I bade Will get me a rod, and he and I called the boy up to one of the upper rooms of the Comptroller’s house towards the garden, and there I reckoned all his faults, and whipped him soundly, but the rods were so small that I fear they did not much hurt to him, but only to my arm, which I am already, within a quarter of an hour, not able to stir almost. After supper to bed.

http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/p/pepys/samuel/wheatley/chapter26.html

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