January 1st. Went to bed between 4 and 5 in the morning with my mind in good temper of satisfaction and slept till about 8, that many people came to speak with me. Among others one came with the best New Year’s gift that ever I had, namely from Mr. Deering, with a bill of exchange drawn upon himself for the payment of £50 to Mr. Luellin. It being for my use with a letter of compliment. I am not resolved what or how to do in this business, but I conclude it is an extraordinary good new year’s gift, though I do not take the whole, or if I do then give some of it to Luellin. By and by comes Captain Allen and his son Jowles and his wife, who continues pretty still. They would have had me set my hand to a certificate for his loyalty, and I know not what his ability for any employment. But I did not think it fit, but did give them a pleasing denial, and after sitting with me an hour they went away. Several others came to me about business, and then being to dine at my uncle Wight’s I went to the Coffee-house, sending my wife by Will, and there staid talking an hour with Coll. Middleton, and others, and among other things about a very rich widow, young and handsome, of one Sir Nicholas Gold’s, a merchant, lately fallen, and of great courtiers that already look after her: her husband not dead a week yet. She is reckoned worth £80,000. Thence to my uncle Wight’s, where Dr. of ——— among others, dined, and his wife, a seeming proud conceited woman, I know not what to make of her, but the Dr’s. discourse did please me very well about the disease of the stone, above all things extolling Turpentine, which he told me how it may be taken in pills with great ease. There was brought to table a hot pie made of a swan I sent them yesterday, given me by Mr. Howe, but we did not eat any of it. But my wife and I rose from table, pretending business, and went to the Duke’s house, the first play I have been at these six months, according to my last vowe, and here saw the so much cried-up play of “Henry the Eighth;” which, though I went with resolution to like it, is so simple a thing made up of a great many patches, that, besides the shows and processions in it, there is nothing in the world good or well done. Thence mightily dissatisfied back at night to my uncle Wight’s, and supped with them, but against my stomach out of the offence the sight of my aunt’s hands gives me, and ending supper with a mighty laugh, the greatest I have had these many months, at my uncle’s being out in his grace after meat, we rose and broke up, and my wife and I home and to bed, being sleepy since last night.
2nd. Up and to the office, and there sitting all the morning, and at noon to the ‘Change, in my going met with Luellin and told him how I had received a letter and bill for £50 from Mr. Deering, and delivered it to him, which he told me he would receive for me. To which I consented, though professed not to desire it if he do not consider himself sufficiently able by the service I have done, and that it is rather my desire to have nothing till he be further sensible of my service. From the ‘Change I brought him home and dined with us, and after dinner I took my wife out, for I do find that I am not able to conquer myself as to going to plays till I come to some new vowe concerning it, and that I am now come, that is to say, that I will not see above one in a month at any of the publique theatres till the sum of 50s. be spent, and then none before New Year’s Day next, unless that I do become worth £1000 sooner than then, and then am free to come to some other terms, and so leaving him in Lombard Street I took her to the King’s house, and there met Mr. Nicholson, my old colleague, and saw “The Usurper,” which is no good play, though better than what I saw yesterday. However, we rose unsatisfied, and took coach and home, and I to the office late writing letters, and so to supper and to bed.
3rd (Lord’s day). Lay long in bed, and then rose and with a fire in my chamber staid within all day, looking over and settling my accounts in good order, by examining all my books, and the kitchen books, and I find that though the proper profit of my last year was but £305, yet I did by other gain make it up £444., which in every part of it was unforeseen of me, and therefore it was a strange oversight for lack of examining my expenses that I should spend £690 this year, but for the time to come I have so distinctly settled all my accounts in writing and the particulars of all my several layings out, that I do hope I shall hereafter make a better judgment of my spendings than ever. I dined with my wife in her chamber, she in bed, and then down again and till 11 at night, and broke up and to bed with great content, but could not make an end of writing over my vows as I purposed, but I am agreed in every thing how to order myself for the year to come, which I trust in God will be much for my good. So up to prayers and to bed. This evening Sir W. Pen came to invite me against next Wednesday, being Twelfth day, to his usual feast, his wedding day.
4th. Up betimes, and my wife being ready, and her mayd Besse and the girl, I carried them by coach and set them all down in Covent Garden and there left them, and I to my Lord Sandwich’s lodgings, but he not being up, I to the Duke’s chamber, and there by and by to his closett, where since his lady was ill, a little red bed of velvet is brought for him to lie alone, which is a very pretty one. After doing business here, I to my Lord’s again, and there spoke with him, and he seems now almost friends again as he used to be. Here meeting Mr. Pierce, the chyrurgeon, he told me among other Court newes, how the Queene is very well again, and the King lay with her on Saturday night last; and that she speaks now very pretty English, and makes her sense out now and then with pretty phrazes: as among others this is mightily cried up; that, meaning to say that she did not like such a horse so well as the rest, he being too prancing and full of tricks, she said he did make too much vanity. Thence to the Tennis Court, after I had spent a little time in Westminster Hall, thinking to have met with Mrs. Lane, but I could not and am glad of it, and there saw the King play at Tennis and others: but to see how the King’s play was extolled without any cause at all, was a loathsome sight, though sometimes, indeed, he did play very well and deserved to be commended; but such open flattery is beastly. Afterwards to St. James’s Parke, being unwilling to go to spend money at the ordinary, and there spent an hour or two, it being a pleasant day, seeing people play at Pell Mell; where it pleased me mightily to hear a gallant, lately come from France, swear at one of his companions for suffering his man (a spruce blade) to be so saucy as to strike a ball while his master was playing on the Mall.1 Thence took coach at White Hall and took up my wife, who is mighty sad to think of her father, who is going into Germany against the Turkes; but what will become of her brother I know not. He is so idle, and out of all capacity, I think, to earn his bread. Home and at my office till is at night making my solemn vowes for the next year, which I trust in the Lord I shall keep, but I fear I have a little too severely bound myself in some things and in too many, for I fear I may forget some. But however, I know the worst, and shall by the blessing of God observe to perform or pay my forfeits punctually. So home and to bed with my mind at rest.
1 When Egerton was Bishop of Durham, he often played at bowls with his guests on the public days. On an occasion of this sort, a visitor happening to cross the lawn, one of the chaplains exclaimed, “You must not shake the green, for the bishop is going to bowl.”-B.
5th. Up and to our office, where we sat all the morning, where my head being willing to take in all business whatever, I am afraid I shall over clogg myself with it. But however, it is my desire to do my duty and shall the willinger bear it. At noon home and to the ‘Change, where I met with Luellin, who went off with me and parted to meet again at the Coffeehouse, but missed. So home and found him there, and Mr. Barrow came to speak with me, so they both dined with me alone, my wife not being ready, and after dinner I up in my chamber with Barrow to discourse about matters of the yard with him, and his design of leaving the place, which I am sorry for, and will prevent if I can. He being gone then Luellin did give me the £50 from Mr. Deering, which he do give me for my pains in his business and what I may hereafter take for him, though there is not the least word or deed I have yet been guilty of in his behalf but what I am sure has been to the King’s advantage and the profit of the service, nor ever will. And for this money I never did condition with him or expected a farthing at the time when I did do him the service, nor have given any receipt for it, it being brought me by Luellin, nor do purpose to give him any thanks for it, but will wherein I can faithfully endeavour to see him have the privilege of his Patent as the King’s merchant. I did give Luellin two pieces in gold for a pair of gloves for his kindness herein. Then he being gone, I to my office, where busy till late at night, that through my room being over confounded in business I could stay there no longer, but went home, and after a little supper to bed.
6th (Twelfth day). Up and to my office, where very busy all the morning, being indeed over loaded with it through my own desire of doing all I can. At noon to the ‘Change, but did little, and so home to dinner with my poor wife, and after dinner read a lecture to her in Geography, which she takes very prettily and with great pleasure to her and me to teach her, and so to the office again, where as busy as ever in my life, one thing after another, and answering people’s business, particularly drawing up things about Mr. Wood’s masts, which I expect to have a quarrel about with Sir W. Batten before it be ended, but I care not. At night home to my wife, to supper, discourse, prayers, and to bed. This morning I began a practice which I find by the ease I do it with that I shall continue, it saving me money and time; that is, to trimme myself with a razer: which pleases me mightily.
7th. Up, putting on my best clothes and to the office, where all the morning we sat busy, among other things upon Mr. Wood’s performance of his contract for masts, wherein I was mightily concerned, but I think was found all along in the right, and shall have my desire in it to the King’s advantage. At noon, all of us to dinner to Sir W. Pen’s, where a very handsome dinner, Sir J. Lawson among others, and his lady and his daughter, a very pretty lady and of good deportment, with looking upon whom I was greatly pleased, the rest of the company of the women were all of our own house, of no satisfaction or pleasure at all. My wife was not there, being not well enough, nor had any great mind. But to see how Sir W. Pen imitates me in everything, even in his having his chimney piece in his dining room the same with that in my wife’s closett, and in every thing else I perceive wherein he can. But to see again how he was out in one compliment: he lets alone drinking any of the ladies’ healths that were there, my Lady Batten and Lawson, till he had begun with my Lady Carteret, who was absent, and that was well enough, and then Mr. Coventry’s mistresse, at which he was ashamed, and would not have had him have drunk it, at least before the ladies present, but his policy, as he thought, was such that he would do it. After dinner by coach with Sir G. Carteret and Sir J. Minnes by appointment to Auditor Beale’s in Salisbury Court, and there we did with great content look over some old ledgers to see in what manner they were kept, and indeed it was in an extraordinary good method, and such as (at least out of design to keep them employed) I do persuade Sir J. Minnes to go upon, which will at least do as much good it may be to keep them for want of something to do from envying those that do something. Thence calling to see whether Mrs. Turner was returned, which she is, and I spoke one word only to her, and away again by coach home and to my office, where late, and then home to supper and bed.
8th. Up and all the morning at my office and with Sir J. Minnes, directing him and Mr. Turner about keeping of their books according to yesterday’s work, wherein I shall make them work enough. At noon to the ‘Change, and there long, and from thence by appointment took Luellin, Mount, and W. Symons, and Mr. Pierce, the chirurgeon, home to dinner with me and were merry. But, Lord! to hear how W. Symons do commend and look sadly and then talk bawdily and merrily, though his wife was dead but the other day, would make a dogg laugh. After dinner I did go in further part of kindness to Luellin for his kindness about Deering’s £50 which he procured me the other day of him. We spent all the afternoon together and then they to cards with my wife, who this day put on her Indian blue gowne which is very pretty, where I left them for an hour, and to my office, and then to them again, and by and by they went away at night, and so I again to my office to perfect a letter to Mr. Coventry about Department Treasurers, wherein I please myself and hope to give him content and do the King service therein. So having done, I home and to teach my wife a new lesson in the globes, and to supper, and to bed. We had great pleasure this afternoon; among other things, to talk of our old passages together in Cromwell’s time; and how W. Symons did make me laugh and wonder today when he told me how he had made shift to keep in, in good esteem and employment, through eight governments in one year (the dear 1659, which were indeed, and he did name them all), and then failed unhappy in the ninth, viz. that of the King’s coming in. He made good to me the story which Luellin did tell me the other day, of his wife upon her death-bed; how she dreamt of her uncle Scobell, and did foretell, from some discourse she had with him, that she should die four days thence, and not sooner, and did all along say so, and did so. Upon the ‘Change a great talke there was of one Mr. Tryan, an old man, a merchant in Lyme–Streete, robbed last night (his man and mayde being gone out after he was a-bed), and gagged and robbed of £1050 in money and about £4000 in jewells, which he had in his house as security for money. It is believed by many circumstances that his man is guilty of confederacy, by their ready going to his secret till in his desk, wherein the key of his cash-chest lay.
9th. Up (my underlip being mightily swelled, I know not how but by overrubbing it, it itching) and to the office, where we sat all the morning, and at noon I home to dinner, and by discourse with my wife thought upon inviting my Lord Sandwich to a dinner shortly. It will cost me at least ten or twelve pounds; but, however, some arguments of prudence I have, which however I shall think again upon before I proceed to that expence. After dinner by coach I carried my wife and Jane to Westminster, leaving her at Mr. Hunt’s, and I to Westminster Hall, and there visited Mrs. Lane, and by appointment went out and met her at the Trumpet, Mrs. Hare’s, but the room being damp we went to the Bell tavern, and there I had her company, but could not do as I used to do (yet nothing but what was honest). . . . . So I to talk about her having Hawley, she told me flatly no, she could not love him. I took occasion to enquire of Howlett’s daughter, with whom I have a mind to meet a little to see what mettle the young wench is made of, being very pretty, but she tells me she is already betrothed to Mrs. Michell’s son, and she in discourse tells me more, that Mrs. Michell herself had a daughter before marriage, which is now near thirty years old, a thing I could not have believed. Thence leading her to the Hall, I took coach and called my wife and her mayd, and so to the New Exchange, where we bought several things of our pretty Mrs. Dorothy Stacy, a pretty woman, and has the modestest look that ever I saw in my life and manner of speech. Thence called at Tom’s and saw him pretty well again, but has not been currant. So homeward, and called at Ludgate, at Ashwell’s uncle’s, but she was not within, to have spoke to her to have come to dress my wife at the time my Lord dines here. So straight home, calling for Walsingham’s Manuals at my bookseller’s to read but not to buy, recommended for a pretty book by Sir W. Warren, whose warrant however I do not much take till I do read it. So home to supper and to bed, my wife not being very well since she came home, being troubled with a fainting fit, which she never yet had before since she was my wife.
10th (Lord’s day). Lay in bed with my wife till 10 or 11 o’clock, having been very sleepy all night. So up, and my brother Tom being come to see me, we to dinner, he telling me how Mrs. Turner found herself discontented with her late bad journey, and not well taken by them in the country, they not desiring her coming down, nor the burials of Mr. Edward Pepys’s corps there. After dinner I to the office, where all the afternoon, and at night my wife and I to my uncle Wight’s, and there eat some of their swan pie, which was good, and I invited them to my house to eat a roasted swan on Tuesday next, which after I was come home did make a quarrels between my wife and I, because she had appointed a wish tomorrow. But, however, we were friends again quickly. So to bed. All our discourse to-night was Mr. Tryan’s late being robbed; and that Collonell Turner (a mad, swearing, confident fellow, well known by all, and by me), one much indebted to this man for his very livelihood, was the man that either did or plotted it; and the money and things are found in his hand, and he and his wife now in Newgate for it; of which we are all glad, so very a known rogue he was.
11th. Waked this morning by 4 o’clock by my wife to call the mayds to their wash, and what through my sleeping so long last night and vexation for the lazy sluts lying so long again and their great wash, neither my wife nor I could sleep one winke after that time till day, and then I rose and by coach (taking Captain Grove with me and three bottles of Tent, which I sent to Mrs. Lane by my promise on Saturday night last) to White Hall, and there with the rest of our company to the Duke and did our business, and thence to the Tennis Court till noon, and there saw several great matches played, and so by invitation to St. James’s; where, at Mr. Coventry’s chamber, I dined with my Lord Barkeley, Sir G. Carteret, Sir Edward Turner, Sir Ellis Layton, and one Mr. Seymour, a fine gentleman; were admirable good discourse of all sorts, pleasant and serious. Thence after dinner to White Hall, where the Duke being busy at the Guinny business, the Duke of Albemarle, Sir W. Rider, Povy, Sir J. Lawson and I to the Duke of Albemarle’s lodgings, and there did some business, and so to the Court again, and I to the Duke of York’s lodgings, where the Guinny company are choosing their assistants for the next year by ballotting. Thence by coach with Sir J. Robinson, Lieutenant of the Tower, he set me down at Cornhill, but, Lord! the simple discourse that all the way we had, he magnifying his great undertakings and cares that have been upon him for these last two years, and how he commanded the city to the content of all parties, when the loggerhead knows nothing almost that is sense. Thence to the Coffee-house, whither comes Sir W. Petty and Captain Grant, and we fell in talke (besides a young gentleman, I suppose a merchant, his name Mr. Hill, that has travelled and I perceive is a master in most sorts of musique and other things) of musique; the universal character; art of memory; Granger’s counterfeiting of hands and other most excellent discourses to my great content, having not been in so good company a great while, and had I time I should covet the acquaintance of that Mr. Hill. This morning I stood by the King arguing with a pretty Quaker woman, that delivered to him a desire of hers in writing. The King showed her Sir J. Minnes, as a man the fittest for her quaking religion, saying that his beard was the stiffest thing about him, and again merrily said, looking upon the length of her paper, that if all she desired was of that length she might lose her desires; she modestly saying nothing till he begun seriously to discourse with her, arguing the truth of his spirit against hers; she replying still with these words, “O King!” and thou’d him all along. The general talke of the towne still is of Collonell Turner, about the robbery; who, it is thought, will be hanged. I heard the Duke of York tell to-night, how letters are come that fifteen are condemned for the late plot by the judges at York; and, among others, Captain Oates, against whom it was proved that he drew his sword at his going out, and flinging away the scabbard, said that he would either return victor or be hanged. So home, where I found the house full of the washing and my wife mighty angry about Will’s being here today talking with her mayds, which she overheard, idling of their time, and he telling what a good mayd my old Jane was, and that she would never have her like again. At which I was angry, and after directing her to beat at least the little girl, I went to the office and there reproved Will, who told me that he went thither by my wife’s order, she having commanded him to come thither on Monday morning. Now God forgive me! how apt I am to be jealous of her as to this fellow, and that she must needs take this time, when she knows I must be gone out to the Duke, though methinks had she that mind she would never think it discretion to tell me this story of him, to let me know that he was there, much less to make me offended with him, to forbid him coming again. But this cursed humour I cannot cool in myself by all the reason I have, which God forgive me for, and convince me of the folly of it, and the disquiet it brings me. So home, where, God be thanked, when I came to speak to my wife my trouble of mind soon vanished, and to bed. The house foul with the washing and quite out of order against tomorrow’s dinner.
12th. Up and to the office, where we sat all the morning, and at noon to the ‘Change awhile, and so home, getting things against dinner ready, and anon comes my uncle Wight and my aunt, with their cozens Mary and Robert, and by chance my uncle Thomas Pepys. We had a good dinner, the chief dish a swan roasted, and that excellent meate. At, dinner and all day very merry. After dinner to cards, where till evening, then to the office a little, and to cards again with them, and lost half-a-crowne. They being gone, my wife did tell me how my uncle did this day accost her alone, and spoke of his hoping she was with child, and kissing her earnestly told her he should be very glad of it, and from all circumstances methinks he do seem to have some intention of good to us, which I shall endeavour to continue more than ever I did yet. So to my office till late, and then home to bed, after being at prayers, which is the first time after my late vowe to say prayers in my family twice in every week.
13th. Up and to my office a little, and then abroad to many several places about business, among others to the geometrical instrument makers, and through Bedlam (calling by the way at an old bookseller’s and there fell into looking over Spanish books and pitched upon some, till I thought of my oathe when I was going to agree for them, and so with much ado got myself out of the shop glad at my heart and so away) to the African House to look upon their book of contracts for several commodities for my information in the prices we give in the Navy. So to the Coffee [house] where extraordinary good discourse of Dr. Whistler’s’ upon my question concerning the keeping of masts, he arguing against keeping them dry, by showing the nature of corruption in bodies and the several ways thereof. So to the ‘Change, and thence with Sir W. Rider to the Trinity House to dinner, and then home and to my office till night, and then with Mr. Bland to Sir T. Viner’s about pieces of eight for Sir J. Lawson, and so back to my office, and there late upon business, and so home to supper and to bed.
14th. Up and to the office, where all the morning, and at noon all of us, viz., Sir G. Carteret and Sir W. Batten at one end, and Mr. Coventry, Sir J. Minnes and I (in the middle at the other end, being taught how to sit there all three by my sitting so much the backwarder) at the other end, to Sir G. Carteret’s, and there dined well. Here I saw Mr. Scott, the bastard that married his youngest daughter. Much pleasant talk at table, and then up and to the office, where we sat long upon our design of dividing the Controller’s work into some of the rest of our hands for the better doing of it, but he would not yield to it, though the simple man knows in his heart that he do not do one part of it. So he taking upon him to do it all we rose, I vexed at the heart to see the King’s service run after this manner, but it cannot be helped. Thence to the Old James to the reference about Mr. Bland’s business. Sir W. Rider being now added to us, and I believe we shall soon come to some determination in it. So home and to my office, did business, and then up to Sir W. Pen and did express my trouble about this day’s business, he not being there, and plainly told him what I thought of it, and though I know him a false fellow yet I adventured, as I have done often, to tell him clearly my opinion of Sir W. Batten and his design in this business, which is very bad. Hence home, and after a lecture to my wife in her globes, to prayers and to bed.
15th. Up and to my office, where all the morning, and among other things Mr. Turner with me, and I did tell him my mind about the Controller his master and all the office, and my mind touching himself too, as he did carry himself either well or ill to me and my clerks, which I doubt not but it will operate well. Thence to the ‘Change, and there met my uncle Wight, who was very kind to me, and would have had me home with him, and so kind that I begin to wonder and think something of it of good to me. Thence home to dinner, and after dinner with Mr. Hater by water, and walked thither and back again from Deptford, where I did do something checking the iron business, but my chief business was my discourse with Mr. Hater about what had passed last night and today about the office business, and my resolution to do him all the good I can therein. So home, and my wife tells me that my uncle Wight hath been with her, and played at cards with her, and is mighty inquisitive to know whether she is with child or no, which makes me wonder what his meaning is, and after all my thoughts, I cannot think, unless it be in order to the making his will, that he might know how to do by me, and I would to God my wife had told him that she was.
16th. Up, and having paid some money in the morning to my uncle Thomas on his yearly annuity, to the office, where we sat all the morning. At noon I to the ‘Change about some pieces of eight for Sir J. Lawson. There I hear that Collonell Turner is found guilty of felony at the Sessions in Mr. Tryan’s business, which will save his life. So home and met there J. Hasper come to see his kinswoman our Jane. I made much of him and made him dine with us, he talking after the old simple manner that he used to do. He being gone, I by water to Westminster Hall, and there did see Mrs. Lane. . . . . So by coach home and to my office, where Browne of the Minerys brought me an Instrument made of a Spyral line very pretty for all questions in Arithmetique almost, but it must be some use that must make me perfect in it. So home to supper and to bed, with my mind ’un peu troubled pour ce que fait’ today, but I hope it will be ‘la dernier de toute ma vie.’
17th (Lord’s day). Up, and I and my wife to church, where Pembleton appeared, which, God forgive me, did vex me, but I made nothing of it. So home to dinner, and betimes my wife and I to the French church and there heard a good sermon, the first time my wife and I were there ever together. We sat by three sisters, all pretty women. It was pleasant to hear the reader give notice to them, that the children to be catechized next Sunday were them of Hounsditch and Blanche Chapiton. Thence home, and there found Ashwell come to see my wife (we having called at her lodging the other, day to speak with her about dressing my wife when my Lord Sandwich dines here), and is as merry as ever, and speaks as disconcerned for any difference between us on her going away as ever. She being gone, my wife and I to see Sir W. Pen and there supped with him much against my stomach, for the dishes were so deadly foule that I could not endure to look upon them. So after supper home to prayers and to bed.
18th. Up, being troubled to find my wife so ready to have me go out of doors. God forgive me for my jealousy! but I cannot forbear, though God knows I have no reason to do so, or to expect her being so true to me as I would have her. I abroad to White Hall, where the Court all in mourning for the Duchesse of Savoy. We did our business with the Duke, and so I to W. Howe at my Lord’s lodgings, not seeing my Lord, he being abroad, and there I advised with W. Howe about my having my Lord to dinner at my house, who likes it well, though it troubles me that I should come to need the advice of such a boy, but for the present it is necessary. Here I found Mr. Mallard, and had from him a common tune set by my desire to the Lyra Vyall, which goes most admirably. Thence home by coach to the ‘Change, after having been at the Coffee-house, where I hear Turner is found guilty of felony and burglary; and strange stories of his confidence at the barr, but yet great indiscretion in his argueing. All desirous of his being hanged. So home and found that Will had been with my wife. But, Lord! why should I think any evil of that; and yet I cannot forbear it. But upon enquiry, though I found no reason of doubtfulness, yet I could not bring my nature to any quiet or content in my wife all day and night, nor though I went with her to divert myself at my uncle Wight’s, and there we played at cards till 12 at night and went home in a great shower of rain, it having not rained a great while before. Here was one Mr. Benson, a Dutchman, played and supped with us, that pretends to sing well, and I expected great matters but found nothing to be pleased with at all. So home and to bed, yet troubled in my mind.
19th. Up, without any kindness to my wife, and so to the office, where we sat all the morning, and at noon I to the ‘Change, and thence to Mr. Cutler’s with Sir W. Rider to dinner, and after dinner with him to the Old James upon our reference of Mr. Bland’s, and, having sat there upon the business half an hour, broke up, and I home and there found Madame Turner and her sister Dike come to see us, and staid chatting till night, and so away, and I to my office till very late, and my eyes began to fail me, and be in pain which I never felt to now-a-days, which I impute to sitting up late writing and reading by candle-light. So home to supper and to bed.
20th. Up and by coach to my Lord Sandwich’s, and after long staying till his coming down (he not sending for me up, but it may be he did not know I was there), he came down, and I walked with him to the Tennis Court, and there left him, seeing the King play. At his lodgings this morning there came to him Mr. W. Montague’s fine lady, which occasioned my Lord’s calling me to her about some business for a friend of hers preferred to be a midshipman at sea. My Lord recommended the whole matter to me. She is a fine confident lady, I think, but not so pretty as I once thought her. My Lord did also seal a lease for the house he is now taking in Lincoln’s Inn Fields, which stands him in 250 per annum rent. Thence by water to my brother’s, whom I find not well in bed, sicke, they think, of a consumption, and I fear he is not well, but do not complain, nor desire to take anything. From him I visited Mr. Honiwood, who is lame, and to thank him for his visit to me the other day, but we were both abroad. So to Mr. Commander’s in Warwicke Lane, to speak to him about drawing up my will, which he will meet me about in a day or two. So to the ‘Change and walked home, thence with Sir Richard Ford, who told me that Turner is to be hanged tomorrow, and with what impudence he hath carried out his trial; but that last night, when he brought him newes of his death, he began to be sober and shed some tears, and he hopes will die a penitent; he having already confessed all the thing, but says it was partly done for a joke, and partly to get an occasion of obliging the old man by his care in getting him his things again, he having some hopes of being the better by him in his estate at his death. Home to dinner, and after dinner my wife and I by water, which we have not done together many a day, that is not since last summer, but the weather is now very warm, and left her at Axe Yard, and I to White Hall, and meeting Mr. Pierce walked with him an hour in the Matted Gallery; among other things he tells me that my Lady Castlemaine is not at all set by by the King, but that he do doat upon Mrs. Stewart only; and that to the leaving of all business in the world, and to the open slighting of the Queene; that he values not who sees him or stands by him while he dallies with her openly; and then privately in her chamber below, where the very sentrys observe his going in and out; and that so commonly, that the Duke or any of the nobles, when they would ask where the King is, they will ordinarily say, “Is the King above, or below?” meaning with Mrs. Stewart: that the King do not openly disown my Lady Castlemaine, but that she comes to Court; but that my Lord FitzHarding and the Hambletons,1 and sometimes my Lord Sandwich, they say, have their snaps at her. But he says my Lord Sandwich will lead her from her lodgings in the darkest and obscurest manner, and leave her at the entrance into the Queene’s lodgings, that he might be the least observed; that the Duke of Monmouth the King do still doat on beyond measure, insomuch that the King only, the Duke of York, and Prince Rupert, and the Duke of Monmouth, do now wear deep mourning, that is, long cloaks, for the Duchesse of Savoy; so that he mourns as a Prince of the Blood, while the Duke of York do no more, and all the nobles of the land not so much; which gives great offence, and he says the Duke of York do consider. But that the Duke of York do give himself up to business, and is like to prove a noble Prince; and so indeed I do from my heart think he will. He says that it is believed, as well as hoped, that care is taken to lay up a hidden treasure of money by the King against a bad day, pray God it be so! but I should be more glad that the King himself would look after business, which it seems he do not in the least. By and by came by Mr. Coventry, and so we broke off; and he and I took a turn or two and so parted, and then my Lord Sandwich came upon me, to speak with whom my business of coming again to-night to this ende of the town chiefly was, in order to the seeing in what manner he received me, in order to my inviting him to dinner to my house, but as well in the morning as now, though I did wait upon him home and there offered occasion of talk with him, yet he treated me, though with respect, yet as a stranger, without any of the intimacy or friendship which he used to do, and which I fear he will never, through his consciousness of his faults, ever do again. Which I must confess do trouble me above anything in the world almost, though I neither do need at present nor fear to need to be so troubled, nay, and more, though I do not think that he would deny me any friendship now if I did need it, but only that he has not the face to be free with me, but do look upon me as a remembrancer of his former vanity, and an espy upon his present practices, for I perceive that Pickering today is great with him again, and that he has done a great courtesy for Mr. Pierce, the chirurgeon, to a good value, though both these and none but these did I mention by name to my Lord in the business which has caused all this difference between my Lord and me. However, I am resolved to forbear my laying out my money upon a dinner till I see him in a better posture, and by grave and humble, though high deportment, to make him think I do not want him, and that will make him the readier to admit me to his friendship again, I believe the soonest of anything but downright impudence, and thrusting myself, as others do, upon him, which yet I cannot do, not [nor] will not endeavour. So home, calling with my wife to see my brother again, who was up, and walks up and down the house pretty well, but I do think he is in a consumption. Home, troubled in mind for these passages with my Lord, but am resolved to better my case in my business to make my stand upon my owne legs the better and to lay up as well as to get money, and among other ways I will have a good fleece out of Creed’s coat ere it be long, or I will have a fall. So to my office and did some business, and then home to supper and to bed, after I had by candlelight shaved myself and cut off all my beard clear, which will make my worke a great deal the less in shaving.
1 The three brothers, George Hamilton, James Hamilton, and the Count Antoine Hamilton, author of the “Memoires de Grammont.”
21st. Up, and after sending my wife to my aunt Wight’s to get a place to see Turner hanged, I to the office, where we sat all the morning, and at noon going to the ‘Change; and seeing people flock in the City, I enquired, and found that Turner was not yet hanged. And so I went among them to Leadenhall Street, at the end of Lyme Street, near where the robbery was done; and to St. Mary Axe, where he lived. And there I got for a shilling to stand upon the wheel of a cart, in great pain, above an houre before the execution was done; he delaying the time by long discourses and prayers one after another, in hopes of a reprieve; but none came, and at last was flung off the ladder in his cloake. A comely-looked man he was, and kept his countenance to the end: I was sorry to see him. It was believed there were at least 12 or 14,000 people in the street. So I home all in a sweat, and dined by myself, and after dinner to the Old James, and there found Sir W. Rider and Mr. Cutler at dinner, and made a second dinner with them, and anon came Mr. Bland and Custos, and Clerke, and so we fell to the business of reference, and upon a letter from Mr. Povy to Sir W. Rider and I telling us that the King is concerned in it, we took occasion to fling off the business from off our shoulders and would have nothing to do with it, unless we had power from the King or Commissioners of Tangier, and I think it will be best for us to continue of that mind, and to have no hand, it being likely to go against the King. Thence to the Coffee-house, and heard the full of Turner’s discourse on the cart, which was chiefly to clear himself of all things laid to his charge but this fault, for which he now suffers, which he confesses. He deplored the condition of his family, but his chief design was to lengthen time, believing still a reprieve would come, though the sheriff advised him to expect no such thing, for the King was resolved to grant none. After that I had good discourse with a pretty young merchant with mighty content. So to my office and did a little business, and then to my aunt Wight’s to fetch my wife home, where Dr. Burnett did tell me how poorly the sheriffs did endeavour to get one jewell returned by Turner, after he was convicted, as a due to them, and not to give it to Mr. Tryan, the true owner, but ruled against them, to their great dishonour. Though they plead it might be another jewell for ought they know and not Tryan’s. After supper home, and my wife tells me mighty stories of my uncle’s fond and kind discourses to her today, which makes me confident that he has thoughts of kindness for us, he repeating his desire for her to be with child, for it cannot enter into my head that he should have any unworthy thoughts concerning her. After doing some business at my office, I home to supper, prayers, and to bed.
22nd. Up, and it being a brave morning, with a gaily to Woolwich, and there both at the Ropeyarde and the other yarde did much business, and thence to Greenwich to see Mr. Pett and others value the carved work of the “Henrietta” (God knows in an ill manner for the King), and so to Deptford, and there viewed Sir W. Petty’s vessel; which hath an odd appearance, but not such as people do make of it, for I am of the opinion that he would never have discoursed so much of it, if it were not better than other vessels, and so I believe that he was abused the other day, as he is now, by tongues that I am sure speak before they know anything good or bad of her. I am sorry to find his ingenuity discouraged so. So home, reading all the way a good book, and so home to dinner, and after dinner a lesson on the globes to my wife, and so to my office till 10 or 11 o’clock at night, and so home to supper and to bed.
23rd. Up, and to the office, where we sat all the morning. At noon home to dinner, where Mr. Hawly came to see us and dined with us, and after we had dined came Mr. Mallard, and after he had eat something, I brought down my vyall which he played on, the first maister that ever touched her yet, and she proves very well and will be, I think, an admirable instrument. He played some very fine things of his owne, but I was afeard to enter too far in their commendation for fear he should offer to copy them for me out, and so I be forced to give or lend him something. So to the office in the evening, whither Mr. Commander came to me, and we discoursed about my will, which I am resolved to perfect the next week by the grace of God. He being gone, I to write letters and other business late, and so home to supper and to bed.
24th (Lord’s day). Lay long in bed, and then up, and being desirous to perform my vowes that I lately made, among others, to be performed this month, I did go to my office, and there fell on entering, out of a bye-book, part of my second journall-book, which hath lain these two years and more unentered. Upon this work till dinner, and after dinner to it again till night, and then home to supper, and after supper to read a lecture to my wife upon the globes, and so to prayers and to bed. This evening also I drew up a rough draught of my last will to my mind.
25th. Up and by coach to Whitehall to my Lord’s lodgings, and seeing that knowing that I was in the house, my Lord did not nevertheless send for me up, I did go to the Duke’s lodgings, and there staid while he was making ready, in which time my Lord Sandwich came, and so all into his closet and did our common business, and so broke up, and I homeward by coach with Sir W. Batten, and staid at Warwicke Lane and there called upon Mr. Commander and did give him my last will and testament to write over in form, and so to the ‘Change, where I did several businesses. So home to dinner, and after I had dined Luellin came and we set him something to eat, and I left him there with my wife, and to the office upon a particular meeting of the East India Company, where I think I did the King good service against the Company in the business of their sending our ships home empty from the Indies contrary to their contract, and yet, God forgive me! I found that I could be willing to receive a bribe if it were offered me to conceal my arguments that I found against them, in consideration that none of my fellow officers, whose duty it is more than mine, had ever studied the case, or at this hour do understand it, and myself alone must do it. That being done Mr. Povy and Bland came to speak with me about their business of the reference, wherein I shall have some more trouble, but cannot help it, besides I hope to make some good use of Mr. Povy to my advantage. So home after business done at my office, to supper, and then to the globes with my wife, and so to bed. Troubled a little in mind that my Lord Sandwich should continue this strangeness to me that methinks he shows me now a days more than while the thing was fresh.
26th. Up and to the office, where we sat all the morning. At noon to the ‘Change, after being at the Coffee-house, where I sat by Tom Killigrew, who told us of a fire last night in my Lady Castlemaine’s lodging, where she bid £40 for one to adventure the fetching of a cabinet out, which at last was got to be done; and the fire at last quenched without doing much wrong. To ‘Change and there did much business, so home to dinner, and then to the office all the afternoon. And so at night my aunt Wight and Mrs. Buggin came to sit with my wife, and I in to them all the evening, my uncle coming afterward, and after him Mr. Benson the Dutchman, a frank, merry man. We were very merry and played at cards till late and so broke up and to bed in good hopes that this my friendship with my uncle and aunt will end well.
27th. Up and to the office, and at noon to the Coffeehouse, where I sat with Sir G. Ascue1 and Sir William Petty, who in discourse is, methinks, one of the most rational men that ever I heard speak with a tongue, having all his notions the most distinct and clear, and, among other things (saying, that in all his life these three books were the most esteemed and generally cried up for wit in the world “Religio Medici,” “Osborne’s Advice to a Son,”2 and “Hudibras “), did say that in these — in the two first principally — the wit lies, and confirming some pretty sayings, which are generally like paradoxes, by some argument smartly and pleasantly urged, which takes with people who do not trouble themselves to examine the force of an argument, which pleases them in the delivery, upon a subject which they like; whereas, as by many particular instances of mine, and others, out of Osborne, he did really find fault and weaken the strength of many of Osborne’s arguments, so as that in downright disputation they would not bear weight; at least, so far, but that they might be weakened, and better found in their rooms to confirm what is there said. He shewed finely whence it happens that good writers are not admired by the present age; because there are but few in any age that do mind anything that is abstruse and curious; and so longer before any body do put the true praise, and set it on foot in the world, the generality of mankind pleasing themselves in the easy delights of the world, as eating, drinking, dancing, hunting, fencing, which we see the meanest men do the best, those that profess it. A gentleman never dances so well as the dancing master, and an ordinary fiddler makes better musique for a shilling than a gentleman will do after spending forty, and so in all the delights of the world almost. Thence to the ‘Change, and after doing much business, home, taking Commissioner Pett with me, and all alone dined together. He told me many stories of the yard, but I do know him so well, and had his character given me this morning by Hempson, as well as my own too of him before, that I shall know how to value any thing he says either of friendship or other business. He was mighty serious with me in discourse about the consequence of Sir W. Petty’s boat, as the most dangerous thing in the world, if it should be practised by endangering our losse of the command of the seas and our trade, while the Turkes and others shall get the use of them, which, without doubt, by bearing more sayle will go faster than any other ships, and, not being of burden, our merchants cannot have the use of them and so will be at the mercy of their enemies. So that I perceive he is afeard that the honour of his trade will down, though (which is a truth) he pretends this consideration to hinder the growth of this invention. He being gone my wife and I took coach and to Covent Garden, to buy a maske at the French House, Madame Charett’s, for my wife; in the way observing the streete full of coaches at the new play, “The Indian Queene;” which for show, they say, exceeds “Henry the Eighth.” Thence back to Mrs. Turner’s and sat a while with them talking of plays and I know not what, and so called to see Tom, but not at home, though they say he is in a deep consumption, and Mrs. Turner and Dike and they say he will not live two months to an end. So home and to the office, and then to supper and to bed.
1 Sir George Ayscue or Askew. After his return from his imprisonment he declined to go to sea again, although he was twice afterwards formally appointed. He sat on the court-martial on the loss of the “Defiance” in 1668.
2 Francis Osborne, an English writer of considerable abilities and popularity, was the author of “Advice to a Son,” in two parts, Oxford, 1656–8, 8vo. He died in 1659. He is the same person mentioned as “My Father Osborne,” October 19th, 1661. — B.
28th. Up and to the office, where all the morning sitting, and at noon upon several things to the ‘Change, and thence to Sir G. Carteret’s to dinner of my own accord, and after dinner with Mr. Wayth down to Deptford doing several businesses, and by land back again, it being very cold, the boat meeting me after my staying a while for him at an alehouse by Redriffe stairs. So home, and took Will coming out of my doors, at which I was a little moved, and told my wife of her keeping him from the office (though God knows my base jealous head was the cause of it), which she seemed troubled at, and that it was only to discourse with her about finding a place for her brother. So I to my office late, Mr. Commander coming to read over my will in order to the engrossing it, and so he being gone I to other business, among others chiefly upon preparing matters against Creed for my profit, and so home to supper and bed, being mightily troubled with my left eye all this evening from some dirt that is got into it.
29th. Up, and after shaving myself (wherein twice now, one after another, I have cut myself much, but I think it is from the bluntness of the razor) there came Mr. Deane to me and staid with me a while talking about masts, wherein he prepared me in several things against Mr. Wood, and also about Sir W. Petty’s boat, which he says must needs prove a folly, though I do not think so unless it be that the King will not have it encouraged. At noon, by appointment, comes Mr. Hartlibb and his wife, and a little before them Messrs. Langley and Bostocke (old acquaintances of mine at Westminster, clerks), and after shewing them my house and drinking they set out by water, my wife and I with them down to Wapping on board the “Crowne,” a merchantman, Captain Floyd, a civil person. Here was Vice–Admiral Goodson, whom the more I know the more I value for a serious man and staunch. Here was Whistler the flagmaker, which vexed me, but it mattered not. Here was other sorry company and the discourse poor, so that we had no pleasure there at all, but only to see and bless God to find the difference that is now between our condition and that heretofore, when we were not only much below Hartlibb in all respects, but even these two fellows above named, of whom I am now quite ashamed that ever my education should lead me to such low company, but it is God’s goodness only, for which let him be praised. After dinner I. broke up and with my wife home, and thence to the Fleece in Cornhill, by appointment, to meet my Lord Marlborough, a serious and worthy gentleman, who, after doing our business, about the company, he and they began to talk of the state of the Dutch in India, which is like to be in a little time without any controll; for we are lost there, and the Portuguese as bad. Thence to the Coffee-house, where good discourse, specially of Lt.-Coll. Baron touching the manners of the Turkes’ Government, among whom he lived long. So to my uncle Wight’s, where late playing at cards, and so home.
30th. Up, and a sorry sermon of a young fellow I knew at Cambridge; but the day kept solemnly for the King’s murder, and all day within doors making up my Brampton papers, and in the evening Mr. Commander came and we made perfect and signed and sealed my last will and testament, which is so to my mind, and I hope to the liking of God Almighty, that I take great joy in myself that it is done, and by that means my mind in a good condition of quiett. At night to supper and to bed. This evening, being in a humour of making all things even and clear in the world, I tore some old papers; among others, a romance which (under the title of “Love a Cheate “) I begun ten years ago at Cambridge; and at this time reading it over to-night I liked it very well, and wondered a little at myself at my vein at that time when I wrote it, doubting that I cannot do so well now if I would try.
31st (Lord’s day). Up, and in my chamber all day long (but a little at dinner) settling all my Brampton accounts to this day in very good order, I having obliged myself by oathe to do that and some other things within this month, and did also perfectly prepare a state of my estate and annexed it to my last will and testament, which now is perfect, and, lastly, I did make up my monthly accounts, and find that I have gained above £50 this month clear, and so am worth £858 clear, which is the greatest sum I ever yet was master of, and also read over my usual vowes, as I do every Lord’s day, but with greater seriousness than ordinary, and I do hope that every day I shall see more and more the pleasure of looking after my business and laying up of money, and blessed be God for what I have already been enabled by his grace to do. So to supper and to bed with my mind in mighty great ease and content, but my head very full of thoughts and business to dispatch this next month also, and among others to provide for answering to the Exchequer for my uncle’s being Generall–Receiver in the year 1647, which I am at present wholly unable to do, but I must find time to look over all his papers.
Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:59