December 1st (Lord’s day). In the morning at church and heard Mr. Mills. At home dined and with me by appointment Mr. Sanchy, who should have brought his mistress, Mrs. Mary Archer, of Cambridge, but she could not come, but we had a good dinner for him. And so in the afternoon my wife went to church, and he and I stayed at home and drank and talked, and he stayed with me till night and supped with me, when I expected to have seen Jack Cole and Lem. Wagstaffe, but they did not come. We this day cut a brave collar of brawn from Winchcombe which proves very good, and also opened the glass of girkins which Captain Cocke did give my wife the other day, which are rare things. So at night to bed. There hath lately been great clapping up of some old statesmen, such as Ireton, Moyer, and others, and they say, upon a great plot, but I believe no such thing; but it is but justice that they should be served as they served the poor Cavaliers; and I believe it will oftentimes be so as long as I live, whether there be cause or no. This evening my brother Tom was with me, and I did talk again to him about Mr. Townsend’s daughter, and I do intend to put the business in hand. I pray God give a good end to it.
2nd. To Savill the painter’s, but he not being well I could do nothing there, and so I returned home, and in my way met Mr. Moore and took him with me home; where we staid and talked all the morning, and he dined with me, and after dinner went away to the Privy Seal, this being our first day this month. By and by called on by Mr. Sanchy and his mistress, and with them by coach to the Opera, to see “The Mad Lover,” but not much pleased with the play. That done home all to my house, where they staid and supped and were merry, and at last late bid good night and so we to bed.
3rd. To the Paynter’s and sat and had more of my picture done; but it do not please me, for I fear it will not be like me. At noon from thence to the Wardrobe, where dinner not being ready Mr. Moore and I to the Temple about my little business at Mr. Turner’s, and so back again, and dinner being half done I went in to my Lady, where my Lady Wright was at dinner with her, and all our talk about the great happiness that my Lady Wright says there is in being in the fashion and in variety of fashions, in scorn of others that are not so, as citizens’ wives and country gentlewomen, which though it did displease me enough, yet I said nothing to it. Thence by water to the office through bridge, being carried by him in oars that the other day rowed in a scull faster than my oars to the Towre, and I did give him 6d. At the office all the afternoon, and at night home to read in “Mare Clausum” till bedtime, and so to bed, but had a very bad night by dreams of my wife’s riding with me and her horse throwing her and breaking her leg, and then I dreamed that I.. [was] in such pain that I waked with it, and had a great deal of pain there a very great while till I fell asleep again, and such apprehension I had of it that when I rose and trussed up myself thinking that it had been no dream. Till in the daytime I found myself very well at ease, and remembered that I did dream so, and that Mr. Creed was with me, and that I did complain to him of it, and he said he had the same pain in his left that I had in my right . . . which pleased me much to remember.
4th. To Whitehall with both Sir Williams, thence by water, where I saw a man lie dead upon Westminster Stairs that had been drowned yesterday. To the Temple, and thence to Mr. Phillips and got my copy of Sturtlow lands. So back to the 3 Tuns at Charing Cross, and there met the two Sir Williams and Col. Treswell and Mr. Falconer, and dined there at Sir W. Pen’s cost, and after dinner by water to Cheapside to the painter’s, and there found my wife, and having sat a little she and I by coach to the Opera and Theatre, but coming too late to both, and myself being a little out of tune we returned, and I settled to read in “Mare Clausum “till bedtime, and so to bed.
5th. This morning I went early to the Paynter’s and there sat for my picture the fourth time, but it do not yet please me, which do much trouble me. Thence to the Treasury Office, where I found Sir W. Batten come before me, and there we sat to pay off the St. George. By and by came Sir W. Pen, and he and I staid while Sir W. Batten went home to dinner, and then he came again, and Sir W. Pen and I went and dined at my house, and had two mince pies sent thither by our order from the messenger Slater, that had dressed some victuals for us, and so we were very merry, and after dinner rode out in his coach, he to Whitehall, and my wife and I to the Opera, and saw “Hamlett” well performed. Thence to the Temple and Mrs. Turner’s (who continues still very ill), and so home and to bed.
6th. Lay long in bed, and then to Westminster Hall and there walked, and then with Mr. Spicer, Hawly, Washington, and little Mr. Ashwell (my old friends at the Exchequer) to the Dog, and gave them two or three quarts of wine, and so away to White Hall, where, at Sir G. Carteret’s, Sir Williams both and I dined very pleasantly; and after dinner, by appointment, came the Governors of the East India Company, to sign and seal the contract between us1 (in the King’s name) and them. And that done, we all went to the King’s closet, and there spoke with the King and the Duke of York, who promise to be very careful of the India trade to the utmost. So back to Sir G. Carteret’s and ended our business, and so away homewards, but Sir W. Batten offering to go to the 3 Tuns at Charing Cross, where the pretty maid the daughter of the house is; I was saying that, that tickled Sir W. Pen, he seemed to take these words very captiously and angrily, which I saw, and seemed indifferent to go home in his coach with them, and so took leave to go to the Council Chamber to speak with my Lord Privy Seal, which I did, but they did stay for me, which I was pleased at, but no words passed between him and me in all our way home. So home and to bed.
1 Charles II.‘s charter to the Company, confirming and extending the former charter, is dated April 3rd, 1661. Bombay, just acquired as part of Queen Katherine’s dowry, was made over to the Company by Letters Patent dated March 27th, 1669.
7th. This morning comes Captain Ferrers and the German, Emanuel Luffe, who goes as one of my Lord’s footmen, though he deserves a much better preferment, to take their leave of me, and here I got the German to play upon my theorbo, which he did both below and in my wife’s chamber, who was in bed. He plays bravely. I find by him that my lute is a most excellent lute. I did give them a mince pie and a collar of brawn and some wine for their breakfast, and were very merry, and sent for Mr. Adamson’s neighbour to drink Mr. Shepley’s health. At last we all parted, but within a quarter of an hour after they were gone, and my wife and I were talking about buying of a fine scallop which is brought her this morning by a woman to be sold, which is to cost her 45s., in comes the German back again, all in a goare of blood, which I wondered at, and tells me that he is afeard that the Captain is killed by the watermen at Towre Stayres; so I presently went thither, and found that upon some rude pressing of the watermen to ply the Captain, he struck one of them with his cane, which they would not take, but struck him again, and then the German drew his sword and ran at one of them, but they were both soundly beaten.1 The Captain is, however, got to the boy that carries him and the pages to the Downs, and I went into the alehouse at the Stayres and got them to deliver the Captain’s feathers, which one from the Captain was come to demand, and went home again, and there found my wife dressing of the German’s head, and so did [give] him a cravett for his neck, and a crown in his purse, and sent him away again. Then came Mr. Moore, and he and I to Westminster and to Worcester House to see Mr. Montagu before he goes away (this night), but could not see him, nor do I think he has a mind to see us for fear of our demanding of money of him for anything. So back to Whitehall, and eat a bit of meat at Wilkinson’s, and then to the Privy Seal, and sealed there the first time this month; and, among other things that passed, there was a patent for Roger Palmer (Madam Palmer’s husband) to be Earl of Castlemaine and Baron of Limbricke in Ireland; but the honour is tied up to the males got of the body of this wife, the Lady Barbary: the reason whereof every body knows. That done, by water to the office, when I found Sir W. Pen had been alone all the night and was just rose, and so I to him, and with him I found Captain Holmes, who had wrote his case, and gives me a copy, as he hath many among his friends, and presented the same to the King and Council. Which I shall make use of in my attempt of writing something concerning the business of striking sail, which I am now about. But he do cry out against Sir John Minnes, as the veriest knave and rogue and coward in the world, which I was glad to hear, because he has given out bad words concerning my Lord, though I am sorry it is so. Here Captain Cox then came in, and he and I staid a good while and so good night. Home and wrote by the post to my father, and so to bed.
1 See a similar outrage, committed by Captain Ferrers, September 12th, 1662. Swords were usually worn by footmen. See May 4th, 1662, host. — B.
8th (Lord’s day). In bed all the morning thinking to take physique, but it being a frost my wife would not have me. So to dinner at the Wardrobe, and after a great deal of good discourse with my Lady after dinner, and among other things of the great christening yesterday at Mr. Rumbell’s, and courtiers and pomp that was there, which I wonder at, I went away up and down into all the churches almost between that place and my house, and so home. And then came my brother Tom, and staid and talked with me, and I hope he will do very well and get money. So to supper and to bed. This morning as I was in bed, one brings me T. Trice’s answer to my bill in chancery from Mr. Smallwood, which I am glad to see, though I am afraid it will do me hurt.
9th. To Whitehall, and thence to the Rhenish wine-house, where I met Mons. Eschar and there took leave of him, he being to go this night to the Downs towards Portugall, and so spent all the morning. At noon to dinner to the Wardrobe; where my Lady Wright was, who did talk much upon the worth and the desert of gallantry; and that there was none fit to be courtiers, but such as have been abroad and know fashions. Which I endeavoured to oppose; and was troubled to hear her talk so, though she be a very wise and discreet lady in other things. From thence Mr. Moore and I to the Temple about my law business with my cozen Turner, and there we read over T. Trice’s answer to my bill and advised thereupon what to do in his absence, he being to go out of town tomorrow. Thence he and I to Mr. Walpole, my attorney, whom I never saw before, and we all to an alehouse hard by, and there we talked of our business, and he put me into great hopes, but he is but a young man, and so I do not depend so much upon his encouragement. So by coach home, and to supper, and to bed, having staid up till 12 at night writing letters to my Lord Sandwich and all my friends with him at sea, to send tomorrow by Mons. Eschar, who goes tomorrow post to the Downs to go along with the fleet to Portugall.
10th. To Whitehall, and there finding Mons. Eschar to be gone, I sent my letters by a porter to the posthouse in Southwark to be sent by despatch to the Downs. So to dinner to my Lord Crew’s by coach, and in my way had a stop of above an hour and a half, which is a great trouble this Parliament time, but it cannot be helped. However I got thither before my Lord come from the House, and so dined with him, and dinner done, home to the office, and there sat late and so home.
11th. My brother Tom and then Mr. Moore came to me this morning, and staid a while with me, and then I went out, and in my way met with Mr. Howell the Turner, who invited me to dine this day at Mr. Rawlinson’s with some friends of his, officers of the Towre, at a venison pasty, which I promised him, and so I went to the Old Bayly, and there staid and drank with him, who told me the whole story how Pegg Kite has married herself to a weaver, an ugly fellow, to her undoing, of which I am glad that I have nothing to do in it. From thence home and put on my velvet coat, and so to the Mitre to dinner according to my promise this morning, but going up into the room I found at least 12 or more persons, and knew not the face of any of them, so I went down again, and though I met Mr. Yong the upholster yet I would not be persuaded to stay, but went away and walked to the Exchequer, and up and down, and was very hungry, and from thence home, when I understand Mr. Howell was come for me to go thither, but I am glad I was not at home, and my wife was gone out by coach to Clerkenwell to see Mrs. Margaret Pen, who is at school there. So I went to see Sir W. Pen, who for this two or three days has not been well, and he and I after some talk took a coach and went to Moorfields, and there walked, though it was very cold, an hour or two, and went into an alehouse, and there I drank some ale and eat some bread and cheese, but he would not eat a bit, and so being very merry we went home again. He to his lodgings and I by promise to Sir W. Batten’s, where he and my lady have gone out of town, and so Mrs. Martha was at home alone, and Mrs. Moore and there I supped upon some good things left of yesterday’s dinner there, where dined a great deal of company — Sir R. Browne and others — and by and by comes in Captain Cox who promised to be here with me, but he staid very late, and had been drinking somewhere and was very drunk, and so very capricious, which I was troubled to see in a man that I took for a very wise and wary man. So I home and left him there, and so to bed.
12th. We lay long in bed, then up and made me ready, and by and by come Will Bowyer and Mr. Gregory, my old Exchequer friend, to see me, and I took them to the Dolphin and there did give them a good morning draft, and so parted, and invited them and all my old Exchequer acquaintance to come and dine with me there on Wednesday next. From thence to the Wardrobe and dined with my Lady, where her brother, Mr. John Crew, dined also, and a strange gentlewoman dined at the table as a servant of my Lady’s; but I knew her not, and so I am afeard that poor Madamoiselle was gone, but I since understand that she is come as housekeeper to my Lady, and is a married woman. From thence to Westminster to my Lord’s house to meet my Lord Privy Seal, who appointed to seal there this afternoon, but by and by word is brought that he is come to Whitehall, and so we are fain to go thither to him, and there we staid to seal till it was so late that though I got leave to go away before he had done, yet the office was done before I could get thither, and so to Sir W. Pen’s, and there sat and talked and drank with him, and so home.
13th. At home all the morning, being by the cold weather, which for these two days has been frost, in some pain in my bladder. Dined at home and then with my wife to the Paynter’s, and there she sat the first time to be drawn, while I all the while stood looking on a pretty lady’s picture, whose face did please me extremely. At last, he having done, I found that the dead colour of my wife is good, above what I expected, which pleased me exceedingly. So home and to the office about some special business, where Sir Williams both were, and from thence with them to the Steelyard, where my Lady Batten and others came to us, and there we drank and had musique and Captain Cox’s company, and he paid all, and so late back again home by coach, and so to bed.
14th. All the morning at home lying in bed with my wife till 11 o’clock. Such a habit we have got this winter of lying long abed. Dined at home, and in the afternoon to the office. There sat late, and so home and to bed.
15th (Lord’s day). To church in the morning, where our young Reader begun the first day to read. Sir W. Pen dined with me and we were merry. Again to church and so home, and all alone read till bedtime, and so to prayers and to bed. I have been troubled this day about a difference between my wife and her maid Nell, who is a simple slut, and I am afeard we shall find her a cross-grained wench. I am now full of study about writing something about our making of strangers strike to us at sea; and so am altogether reading Selden and Grotius, and such other authors to that purpose.
16th. Up by five o’clock this morning by candlelight (which I have not done for many a day), being called upon by one Mr. Bollen by appointment, who has business to be done with my Lord Privy Seal this morning, and so by coach, calling Mr. Moore at the Wardrobe, to Chelsy, and there did get my Lord to seal it. And so back again to Westminster Hall, and thence to my Lord Sandwich’s lodging, where I met my wife (who had been to see Mrs. Hunt who was brought to bed the other day of a boy), and got a joint of meat thither from the Cook’s, and she and I and Sarah dined together, and after dinner to the Opera, where there was a new play (“Cutter of Coleman Street”),1 made in the year 1658, with reflections much upon the late times; and it being the first time, the pay was doubled, and so to save money, my wife and I went up into the gallery, and there sat and saw very well; and a very good play it is. It seems of Cowly’s making. From thence by coach home, and to bed.
1 Cutter, an old word for a rough swaggerer: hence the title of Cowley’s play. It was originally called “The Guardian,” when acted before Prince Charles at Trinity College, Cambridge, on March 12th, 1641.
17th. Up and to the Paynter’s to see how he went forward in our picture. So back again to dinner at home, and then was sent for to the Privy Seal, whither I was forced to go and stay so long and late that I was much vexed. At last we got all done, and then made haste to the office, where they were sat, and there we sat late, and so home to supper and to Selden, “Mare Clausum,” and so to bed.
18th. At the office upon business extraordinary all the morning, then to my Lady Sandwich’s to dinner, whither my wife, who had been at the painter’s, came to me, and there dined, and there I left her, and to the Temple my brother and I to see Mrs. Turner, who begins to be better, and so back to my Lady’s, where much made of, and so home to my study till bed-time, and so to bed.
19th. This morning my wife dressed herself fine to go to the christening of Mrs. Hunt’s child, and so she and I in the way in the morning went to the Paynter s, and there she sat till noon, and I all the while looking over great variety of good prints which he had, and by and by comes my boy to tell us that Mrs. Hunt has been at our house to tell us that the christening is not till Saturday next. So after the Paynter had done I did like the picture pretty well, and my wife and I went by coach home, but in the way I took occasion to fall out with my wife very highly about her ribbands being ill matched and of two colours, and to very high words, so that, like a passionate fool, I did call her whore, for which I was afterwards sorry. But I set her down at home, and went myself by appointment to the Dolphin, where Sir W. Warren did give us all a good dinner, and that being done, to the office, and there sat late, and so home.
20th. Lay long in bed, and then up, and so to the Wardrobe to dinner, and from thence out with Mr. Moore towards my house, and in our way met with Mr. Swan (my old acquaintance), and we to a tavern, where we had enough of his old simple religious talk, and he is still a coxcomb in these things as he ever was, and tells me he is setting out a book called “The unlawfull use of lawfull things;” but a very simple fellow he is, and so I leave him. So we drank and at last parted, and Mr. Moore and I into Cornhill, it being dark night, and in the street and on the Exchange discoursed about Dominion of the Sea, wherein I am lately so much concerned, and so I home and sat late up reading of Mr. Selden, and so to bed.
21st. To White Hall to the Privy Seal, where my Lord Privy Seal did tell us he could seal no more this month, for that he goes thirty miles out of town to keep his Christmas. At which I was glad, but only afeard lest any thing of the King’s should force us to go after him to get a seal in the country. Thence to Westminster Hall (having by the way drank with Mrs. Sarah and Mrs. Betty at my Lord’s lodgings), and thence taken by some Exchequer men to the Dogg, where, being St. Thomas’s day, by custom they have a general meeting at dinner. There I was and all very merry, and there I spoke to Mr. Falconberge to look whether he could out of Domesday Book, give me any thing concerning the sea, and the dominion thereof; which he says he will look after. Thence taking leave to my brother’s, and there by appointment met with Prior of Brampton who had money to pay me, but desiring some advice he stays till Monday. So by coach home to the office, where I was vexed to see Sir Williams both seem to think so much that I should be a little out of the way, saying that without their Register they were not a Committee, which I took in some dudgeon, and see clearly that I must keep myself at a little distance with them and not crouch, or else I shall never keep myself up even with them. So home and wrote letters by the post. This evening my wife come home from christening Mrs. Hunt’s son, his name John, and a merchant in Mark Lane came along with her, that was her partner. So after my business was done, and read something in Mr. Selden, I went to bed.
22nd. To church in the morning, where the Reader made a boyish young sermon. Home to dinner, and there I took occasion, from the blacknesse of the meat as it came out of the pot, to fall out with my wife and my maid for their sluttery, and so left the table, and went up to read in Mr. Selden till church time, and then my wife and I to church, and there in the pew, with the rest of the company, was Captain Holmes, in his gold-laced suit, at which I was troubled because of the old business which he attempted upon my wife. So with my mind troubled I sat still, but by and by I took occasion from the rain now holding up (it raining when we came into the church) to put my wife in mind of going to the christening (which she was invited to) of N. Osborne’s child, which she did, and so went out of the pew, and my mind was eased. So home after sermon and there came by appointment Dr. T. Pepys, Will. Joyce, and my brother Tom, and supped with me, and very merry they were, and I seemed to be, but I was not pleased at all with their company. So they being gone we went to bed.
23rd. Early up and by coach (before daylight) to the Wardrobe, and took up Mr. Moore, and he and I to Chelsy to my Lord Privy Seal, and there sealed some things, he being to go out of town for all Christmas tomorrow. So back again to Westminster, and from thence by water to the Treasury Office, where I found Sir W. Pen paying off the Sophia and Griffen, and there I staid with him till noon, and having sent for some collar of beef and a mince pie, we eat and drank, and so I left him there and to my brother’s by appointment to meet Prior, but he came not, so I went and saw Mrs. Turner who continues weak, and by and by word was brought me that Prior’s man was come to Tom’s, and so I went and told out £128 which I am to receive of him, but Prior not coming I went away and left the money by his desire with my brother all night, and they to come to me tomorrow morning. So I took coach, and lighting at my bookseller’s in Paul’s Churchyard, I met with Mr. Crumlum and the second master of Paul’s School, and thence I took them to the Starr, and there we sat and talked, and I had great pleasure in their company, and very glad I was of meeting him so accidentally, I having omitted too long to go to see him. Here in discourse of books I did offer to give the school what books he would choose of £5. So we parted, and I home, and to Mr. Selden, and then to bed.
24th. Home all the morning and dined at home, and in the afternoon to the office. So home.
25th. In the morning to church, where at the door of our pew I was fain to stay, because that the sexton had not opened the door. A good sermon of Mr. Mills. Dined at home all alone, and taking occasion from some fault in the meat to complain of my maid’s sluttery, my wife and I fell out, and I up to my chamber in a discontent. After dinner my wife comes up to me and all friends again, and she and I to walk upon the leads, and there Sir W. Pen called us, and we went to his house and supped with him, but before supper Captain Cock came to us half drunk, and began to talk, but Sir W. Pen knowing his humour and that there was no end of his talking, drinks four great glasses of wine to him, one after another, healths to the king, and by that means made him drunk, and so he went away, and so we sat down to supper, and were merry, and so after supper home and to bed.
26th. This morning Sir W. Pen and I to the Treasury office, and there we paid off the Amity (Captain Stokes’s ship that was at Guinny) and another ship, and so home, and after dinner Sir William came to me, and he and his son and Aaugliter, and I and my wife, by coach to Moorfields to walk; but it was most foul weather, and so we went into an alehouse and there eat some cakes and ale, and a washeallbowle1 woman and girl came to us and sung to us. And after all was done I called my boy (Wayneman) to us to eat some cake that was left, and the woman of the house told us that he had called for two cakes and a pot of ale for himself, at which I was angry, and am resolved to correct him for it. So home, and Sir W. Pen and his son and daughter to supper to me to a good turkey, and were merry at cards, and so to bed.
1 “The wenches with their wassall bowls
About the streets are singing.”
— Wither’s Christmas Carol.
The old custom of carrying the wassail bowl from door to door, with songs and merriment, in Christmas week, is still observed in some of our rural districts. — B.
27th. In the morning to my Bookseller’s to bespeak a Stephens’s Thesaurus, for which I offer £4, to give to Paul’s School; and from thence to Paul’s Church; and there I heard Dr. Gunning preach a good sermon upon the day (being St. John’s day), and did hear him tell a story, which he did persuade us to believe to be true, that St. John and the Virgin Mary did appear to Gregory, a Bishopp, at his prayer to be confirmed in the faith, which I did wonder to hear from him. Here I met with Mr. Crumlum (and told him of my endeavour to get Stephens’s Thesaurus for the school), and so home, and after dinner comes Mr. Faulconberge to see me, and at his desire I sent over for his kinsman Mr. Knightly, the merchant, and so he came over and sat and drank with us, and at his request I went over with him, and there I sat till the evening, and till both Mr. Knightly and Mr. Faulconberge (for whom I sent my boy to get a coach to carry him to Westminster) were both drunk, and so home, but better wine I never drank in all my life. So home, and finding my wife gone to Sir W. Pen’s, I went thither, and there I sat and played at cards and supped, and so home and to bed.
28th. At home all the morning; and in the afternoon all of us at the office, upon a letter from the Duke for the making up of a speedy estimate of all the debts of the Navy, which is put into good forwardness. I home and Sir W. Pen to my house, who with his children staid playing cards late, and so to bed.
29th (Lord’s day). Long in bed with my wife, and though I had determined to go to dine with my wife at my Lady’s, (chiefly to put off dining with Sir W. Pen today because Holmes dined there), yet I could not get a coach time enough to go thither, and so I dined at home, and my brother Tom with me, and then a coach came and I carried my wife to Westminster, and she went to see Mrs. Hunt, and I to the Abbey, and there meeting with Mr. Hooper, he took me in among the quire, and there I sang with them their service, and so that being done, I walked up and down till night for that Mr. Coventry was not come to Whitehall since dinner again. At last I went thither and he was come, and I spoke with him about some business of the office, and so took leave of him, and sent for my wife and the coach, and so to the Wardrobe and supped, and staid very long talking with my Lady, who seems to doat every day more and more upon us. So home and to prayers, and to bed.
30th. At the office about this estimate and so with my wife and Sir W. Pen to see our pictures, which do not much displease us, and so back again, and I staid at the Mitre, whither I had invited all my old acquaintance of the Exchequer to a good chine of beef, which with three barrels of oysters and three pullets, and plenty of wine and mirth, was our dinner, and there was about twelve of us, among others Mr. Bowyer, the old man, and Mr. Faulconberge, Shadwell, Taylor, Spicer, Woodruffe (who by reason of some friend that dined with him came to us after dinner), Servington, &c., and here I made them a foolish promise to give them one this day twelvemonth, and so for ever while I live, but I do not intend it. Mere I staid as long as I could keep them, and so home to Sir W. Pen, who with his children and my wife has been at a play today and saw “D’Ambois,” which I never saw. Here we staid late at supper and playing at cards, and so home and
31st. My wife and I this morning to the Paynter’s, and there she sat the last time, and I stood by and did tell him some little things to do, that now her picture I think will please me very well; and after her, her little black dogg sat in her lap; and was drawn, which made us very merry; so home to dinner, and so to the office; and there late finishing our estimate of the debts of the Navy to this day; and it come to near £374,000. So home, and after supper, and my barber had trimmed me, I sat down to end my journell for this year, and my condition at this time, by God’s blessing, is thus: my health (only upon catching cold, which brings great pain in my back . . . as it used to be when I had the stone) is very good, and so my wife’s in all respects: my servants, W. Hewer, Sarah, Nell, and Wayneman: my house at the Navy Office. I suppose myself to be worth about £500 clear in the world, and my goods of my house my own, and what is coming to me from Brampton, when my father dies, which God defer. But, by my uncle’s death, the whole care and trouble of all, and settling of all lies upon me, which is very great, because of law-suits, especially that with T. Trice, about the interest of £200, which will, I hope, be ended soon. My chiefest thought is now to get a good wife for Tom, there being one offered by the Joyces, a cozen of theirs, worth £200 in ready money. I am also upon writing a little treatise to present to the Duke, about our privilege in the seas, as to other nations striking their flags to us. But my greatest trouble is, that I have for this last half year been a very great spendthrift in all manner of respects, that I am afeard to cast up my accounts, though I hope I am worth what I say above. But I will cast them up very shortly. I have newly taken a solemn oath about abstaining from plays and wine, which I am resolved to keep according to the letter of the oath which I keep by me. The fleet hath been ready to sail for Portugall, but hath lacked wind this fortnight, and by that means my Lord is forced to keep at sea all this winter, till he brings home the Queen, which is the expectation of all now, and the greatest matter of publique talk.
Last updated Monday, December 22, 2014 at 10:53