Biography of Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685
In 1618 Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 was born to [his father] John Bennet 1563-1626 (55) and [his mother] Dorothy Crofts 1588-1659 (30).
On 15 Feb 1626 [his father] John Bennet 1563-1626 (63) died.
In Mar 1655 Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (37) and [his wife] Elisabeth Nassau Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (21) were married.
After Mar 1655 [his daughter] Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 was born to Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 and [his wife] Elisabeth Nassau Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718.
In Mar 1657 Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (39) was knighted.
In 1659 [his mother] Dorothy Crofts 1588-1659 (71) died.
In 1660 Joseph Williamson Secretary of State 1633-1701 (26) entered the service of the Secretary of State for the Southern Department, Sir Edward Nicholas (66), retaining his position under the succeeding secretary, Sir Henry Bennet (42), afterwards Earl of Arlington.
John Evelyn's Diary 1661 October. 01 Oct 1661. I sailed this morning with his Majesty (31) in one of his yachts (or pleasure boats), vessels not known among us till the Dutch East India Company presented that curious piece to the King (31); being very excellent sailing vessels. It was on a wager between his other new pleasure boat, built frigate-like, and one of the Duke of York's (27); the wager £100; the race from Greenwich to Gravesend and back. The King (31) lost it going, the wind being contrary, but saved stakes in returning. There were divers noble persons and lords on board, his Majesty (31) sometimes steering himself. His barge and kitchen boat attended. I brake fast this morning with the King (31) at return in his smaller vessel, he being pleased to take me and only four more, who were noblemen, with him; but dined in his yacht, where we all ate together with his Majesty (31). In this passage he was pleased to discourse to me about my book inveighing against the nuisance of the smoke of London, and proposing expedients how, by removing those particulars I mentioned, it might be reformed; commanding me to prepare a Bill against the next session of Parliament, being, as he said, resolved to have something done in it. Then he discoursed to me of the improvement of gardens and buildings, now very rare in England comparatively to other countries. He then commanded me to draw up the matter of fact happening at the bloody encounter which then had newly happened between the French and Spanish Ambassadors near the Tower, contending for precedency, at the reception of the Swedish Ambassador; giving me orders to consult Sir William Compton (36), Master of the Ordnance, to inform me of what he knew of it, and with his favorite, Sir Charles Berkeley (31), captain of the Duke's life guard, then present with his troop and three foot companies; with some other reflections and instructions, to be prepared with a declaration to take off the reports which went about of his Majesty's (31) partiality in the affairs, and of his officers' and spectators' rudeness while the conflict lasted. So I came home that night, and went next morning to London, where from the officers of the Tower, Sir William Compton (36), Sir Charles Berkeley (31), and others who were attending at this meeting of the Ambassadors three days before, having collected what I could, I drew up a Narrative in vindication of his Majesty (31), and the carriage of his officers and standers-by.
On Thursday his Majesty (31) sent one of the pages of the back stairs for me to wait on him with my papers, in his cabinet where was present only Sir Henry Bennett (43) (Privy-Purse), when beginning to read to his Majesty (31) what I had drawn up, by the time I had read half a page, came in Mr. Secretary Morice with a large paper, desiring to speak with his Majesty (31), who told him he was now very busy, and therefore ordered him to come again some other time; the Secretary replied that what he had in his hand was of extraordinary importance. So the King (31) rose up, and, commanding me to stay, went aside to a corner of the room with the Secretary; after a while, the Secretary being dispatched, his Majesty (31) returning to me at the table, a letter was brought him from Madame out of France;68 this he read and then bid me proceed from where I left off. This I did till I had ended all the narrative, to his Majesty's (31) great satisfaction; and, after I had inserted one or two more clauses, in which his Majesty (31) instructed me, commanded that it should that night be sent to the posthouse, directed to the Lord Ambassador at Paris (the Earl of St. Alban's), and then at leisure to prepare him a copy, which he would publish. This I did, and immediately sent my papers to the Secretary of State, with his Majesty's (31) express command of dispatching them that night for France. Before I went out of the King's (31) closet, he called me back to show me some ivory statues, and other curiosities that I had not seen before.
John Evelyn's Diary 1661 October. 03 Oct 1661. Next evening, being in the withdrawing-room adjoining the bedchamber, his Majesty (31) espying me came to me from a great crowd of noblemen standing near the fire, and asked me if I had done; and told me he feared it might be a little too sharp, on second thoughts, for he had that morning spoken with the French Ambassador, who it seems had palliated the matter, and was very tame; and therefore directed me where I should soften a period or two, before it was published (as afterward it was). This night also he spoke to me to give him a sight of what was sent, and to bring it to him in his bedchamber; which I did, and received it again from him at dinner, next day. By Saturday, having finished it with all his Majesty's (31) notes, the King (31) being gone abroad, I sent the papers to Sir Henry Bennett (43) (Privy-Purse and a great favorite), and slipped home, being myself much indisposed and harassed with going about, and sitting up to write.
John Evelyn's Diary 1661 November. 02 Nov 1661. Came Sir Henry Bennett (43), since Lord Arlington, to visit me, and to acquaint me that his Majesty (31) would do me the honor to come and see my garden; but, it being then late, it was deferred.
John Evelyn's Diary 1662 February. 17 Feb 1662. I went with my Lord of Bristol (49) to see his house at Wimbledon, newly bought of the Queen-Mother (52), to help contrive the garden after the modern. It is a delicious place for prospect and the thickets, but the soil cold and weeping clay. Returned that evening with Sir Henry Bennett (44).
This night was buried in Westminster Abbey the Queen of Bohemia, after all her sorrows and afflictions being come to die in the arms of her nephew, the King (31); also this night and the next day fell such a storm of hail, thunder, and lightning, as never was seen the like in any man's memory, especially the tempest of wind, being southwest, which subverted, besides huge trees, many houses, innumerable chimneys (among others that of my parlor at Sayes Court), and made such havoc at land and sea, that several perished on both. Divers lamentable fires were also kindled at this time; so exceedingly was God's hand against this ungrateful and vicious nation and Court.
John Evelyn's Diary 1664 May. 05 May 1664. Went with some company a journey of pleasure on the water, in a barge, with music, and at Mortlake had a great banquet, returning late. The occasion was, Sir Robert Carr (27) now courting Mrs. Bennett, sister to the Secretary of State (46).
John Evelyn's Diary 1664 October. 29 Oct 1664. Was the most magnificent triumph by water and land of the Lord Mayor. I dined at Guildhall at the upper table, placed next to Sir H. Bennett (46), Secretary of State, opposite to my Lord Chancellor (55) and the Duke of Buckingham (36), who sat between Monsieur Comminges, the French Ambassador, Lord Treasurer (57), the Dukes of Ormond (54) and Albemarle (55), Earl of Manchester (62), Lord Chamberlain, and the rest of the great officers of state. My Lord Mayor came twice up to us, first drinking in the golden goblet his Majesty's (34) health, then the French King's as a compliment to the Ambassador; we returned my Lord Mayor's health, the trumpets and drums sounding. The cheer was not to be imagined for the plenty and rarity, with an infinite number of persons at the tables in that ample hall. The feast was said to cost £1,000. I slipped away in the crowd, and came home late.
In 1665 Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (47) was created 1st Baron Arlington Harlington in Middlesex. [his wife] Elisabeth Nassau Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (31) by marriage Baroness Arlington Harlington in Middlesex.
John Evelyn's Diary 1665 March. 29 Mar 1665. Went to Goring House, now Mr. Secretary Bennet's (47), ill-built, but the place capable of being made a pretty villa. His Majesty (34) was now finishing the Decoy in the Park.
John Evelyn's Diary 1665 April. 20 Apr 1665. To Whitehall, to the King (34), who called me into his bedchamber as he was dressing, to whom, I showed the letter written to me from the Duke of York (31) from the fleet, giving me notice of young Evertzen, and some considerable commanders newly taken in fight with the Dartmouth and Diamond frigates, whom he had sent me as prisoners at war; I went to know of his Majesty (34) how he would have me treat them, when he commanded me to bring the young captain to him, and to take the word of the Dutch Ambassador (who yet remained here) for the other, that he should render himself to me whenever I called on him, and not stir without leave. Upon which I desired more guards, the prison being Chelsea House. I went also to Lord Arlington (47) (the Secretary Bennet lately made a Lord) about other business. Dined at my Lord Chancellor's (56); none with him but Sir Sackville Crowe (69), formerly Ambassador at Constantinople; we were very cheerful and merry.
John Evelyn's Diary 1666 January. 29 Jan 1666. I went to wait on his Majesty (35), now returned from Oxford to Hampton-Court, where the Duke of Albemarle (57) presented me to him; he ran toward me, and in a most gracious manner gave me his hand to kiss, with many thanks for my care and faithfulness in his service in a time of such great danger, when everybody fled their employments; he told me he was much obliged to me, and said he was several times concerned for me, and the peril I underwent, and did receive my service most acceptably (though in truth I did but do my duty, and O that I had performed it as I ought!). After this, his Majesty (35) was pleased to talk with me alone, near an hour, of several particulars of my employment, and ordered me to attend him again on the Thursday following at Whitehall. Then the Duke (57) came toward me, and embraced me with much kindness, telling me if he had thought my danger would have been so great, he would not have suffered his Majesty (35) to employ me in that station. Then came to salute me my Lord of St. Albans (60), Lord Arlington (48), Sir William Coventry (38), and several great persons; after which, I got home, not being very well in health.
The Court was now in deep mourning for the French Queen-Mother.
John Evelyn's Diary 1666 July. 25 Jul 1666. The fleets engaged. I dined at Lord Berkeley's (38), at St. James's, where dined my Lady Harrietta Hyde (20), Lord Arlington (48), and Sir John Duncomb (44).
John Evelyn's Diary 1666 November. 27 Nov 1666. Sir Hugh Pollard (63), Comptroller of the Household, died at Whitehall, and his Majesty (36) conferred the white staff on my brother Commissioner for sick and wounded, Sir Thomas Clifford (36), a bold young gentleman, of a small fortune in Devon, but advanced by Lord Arlington (48), Secretary of State, to the great astonishment of all the Court. This gentleman (36) was somewhat related to me by the marriage of his mother to my nearest kinsman, Gregory Coale, and was ever my noble friend, a valiant and daring person, but by no means fit for a supple and flattering courtier.
John Evelyn's Diary 1666 December. 02 Dec 1666. Dined with me Monsieur Kiviet (39), a Dutch gentleman-pensioner of Rotterdam, who came over for protection, being of the Prince of Orange's (16) party, now not welcome in Holland. The King (36) knighted him for some merit in the Prince's (16) behalf. He should, if caught, have been beheaded with Monsieur Buat, and was brother-in-law to Van Tromp, the sea-general. With him came Mr. Gabriel Sylvius, and Mr. Williamson (33), secretary to Lord Arlington (48); M. Kiviet (39) came to examine whether the soil about the river of Thames would be proper to make clinker bricks, and to treat with me about some accommodation in order to it.
John Evelyn's Diary 1667 July. 02 Jul 1667. Called upon my Lord Arlington (49), as from his Majesty (37), about the new fuel. The occasion why I was mentioned, was from what I said in my Sylva three years before, about a sort of fuel for a need, which obstructed a patent of Lord Carlingford (64), who had been seeking for it himself; he was endeavoring to bring me into the project, and proffered me a share. I met my Lord; and, on the 9th, by an order of Council, went to my Lord Mayor, to be assisting. In the meantime they had made an experiment of my receipt of houllies, which I mention in my book to be made at Maestricht, with a mixture of charcoal dust and loam, and which was tried with success at Gresham College (then being the exchange for the meeting of the merchants since the fire) for everybody to see. This done, I went to the Treasury for £12,000 for the sick and wounded yet on my hands.
Next day, we met again about the fuel at Sir J. Armourer's in the Mews.
John Evelyn's Diary 1667 August. 08 Aug 1667. Visited Mr. Oldenburg (48), a close prisoner in the Tower, being suspected of writing intelligence. I had an order from Lord Arlington (49), Secretary of State, which caused me to be admitted. This gentleman was secretary to our Society, and I am confident will prove an innocent person.
John Evelyn's Diary 1669 February. 13 Feb 1669. I presented his Majesty (38) with my "History of the Four Impostors;" he told me of other like cheats. I gave my book to Lord Arlington (51), to whom I dedicated it. It was now that he began to tempt me about writing "The Dutch War.".
John Evelyn's Diary 1669 June. 03 Jun 1669. Went to take leave of Lord Howard, going Ambassador to Morocco. Dined at Lord Arlington's (51), where were the Earl of Berkshire (49), Lord Saint John, Sir Robert Howard, and Sir R. Holmes.
John Evelyn's Diary 1670 June. 18 Jun 1670. Dined at Goring House, whither my Lord Arlington (52) carried me from Whitehall with the Marquis of Worcester (41); there, we found Lord Sandwich (44), Viscount Stafford (55), the Lieutenant of the Tower, and others. After dinner, my Lord communicated to me his Majesty's (40) desire that I would engage to write the history of our late war with the Hollanders, which I had hitherto declined; this I found was ill taken, and that I should disoblige his Majesty (40), who had made choice of me to do him this service, and, if I would undertake it, I should have all the assistance the Secretary's office and others could give me, with other encouragements, which I could not decently refuse.
Lord Stafford (55) rose from the table, in some disorder, because there were roses stuck about the fruit when the dessert was set on the table; such an antipathy, it seems, he had to them as once Lady Selenger also had, and to that degree that, as Sir Kenelm Digby tells us, laying but a rose upon her cheek when she was asleep, it raised a blister: but Sir Kenelm was a teller of strange things.
John Evelyn's Diary 1670 July. 22 Jul 1670. We rode out to see the great mere, or level, of recovered fen land, not far off. In the way, we met Lord Arlington (52) going to his house in Suffolk, accompanied with Count Ogniati, the Spanish minister, and Sir Bernard Gascoigne (56); he was very importunate with me to go with him to Euston, being but fifteen miles distant; but, in regard of my company, I could not. So, passing through Newmarket, we alighted to see his Majesty's (40) house there, now new-building; the arches of the cellars beneath are well turned by Mr. Samuel, the architect, the rest mean enough, and hardly fit for a hunting house. Many of the rooms above had the chimneys in the angles and corners, a mode now introduced by his Majesty (40), which I do at no hand approve of. I predict it will spoil many noble houses and rooms, if followed. It does only well in very small and trifling rooms, but takes from the state of greater. Besides, this house is placed in a dirty street, without any court or avenue, like a common one, whereas it might and ought to have been built at either end of the town, upon the very carpet where the sports are celebrated; but, it being the purchase of an old wretched house of my Lord Thomond's, his Majesty (40) was persuaded to set it on that foundation, the most improper imaginable for a house of sport and pleasure.
We went to see the stables and fine horses, of which many were here kept at a vast expense, with all the art and tenderness imaginable.
Being arrived at some meres, we found Lord Wotton and Sir John Kiviet (43) about their draining engines, having, it seems, undertaken to do wonders on a vast piece of marsh-ground they had hired of Sir Thomas Chicheley (master of the ordnance). They much pleased themselves with the hopes of a rich harvest of hemp and coleseed, which was the crop expected.
Here we visited the engines and mills both for wind and water, draining it through two rivers or graffs, cut by hand, and capable of carrying considerable barges, which went thwart one the other, discharging the water into the sea. Such this spot had been the former winter; it was astonishing to see it now dry, and so rich that weeds grew on the banks, almost as high as a man and horse. Here, my Lord and his partner had built two or three rooms, with Flanders white bricks, very hard. One of the great engines was in the kitchen, where !I saw the fish swim up, even to the very chimney hearth, by a small cut through the room, and running within a foot of the very fire.
Having, after dinner, ridden about that vast level, pestered with heat and swarms of gnats, we returned over Newmarket Heath, the way being mostly a sweet turf and down, like Salisbury Plain, the jockeys breathing their fine barbs and racers and giving them their heats.
John Evelyn's Diary 1670 August. 20 Aug 1670. At Windsor I supped with the Duke of Monmouth (21); and, the next day, invited by Lord Arlington (52), dined with the same Duke and divers Lords. After dinner my Lord and I had a conference of more than an hour alone in his bedchamber, to engage me in the History. I showed him something that I had drawn up, to his great satisfaction, and he desired me to show it to the Treasurer (40).
John Evelyn's Diary 1670 November. 23 Nov 1670. Dined with the Earl of Arlington (52), where was the Venetian Ambassador, of whom I now took solemn leave, now on his return. There were also Lords Howard, Wharton (57), Windsor (43), and divers other great persons.
John Evelyn's Diary 1671 January. 20 Jan 1671. The King (40) came to me in the Queen's (32) withdrawing-room from the circle of ladies, to talk with me as to what advance I had made in the Dutch History. I dined with the Treasurer (40), and afterward we went to the Secretary's (53) Office, where we conferred about divers particulars.
John Evelyn's Diary 1671 February. 28 Feb 1671. [Note. Original entry stated 29 Feb 1671 which is clearly incorrect since 1671 isn't a leap year.] I went to thank the Treasurer (40), who was my great friend and loved me; I dined with him and much company, and went thence to my Lord Arlington (53), Secretary of State, in whose favor I likewise was upon many occasions, though I cultivated neither of their friendships by any mean submissions. I kissed his Majesty's (40) hand, on his making me one of the new-established Council.
John Evelyn's Diary 1671 May. 17 May 1671. Dined at Mr. Treasurer's (40) with the Earl of Arlington (53), Carlingford, Lord Arundel of Wardour (64), Lord Almoner to the Queen, a French Count and two abbots, with several more of French nobility; and now by something I had lately observed of Mr. Treasurer's (40) conversation on occasion, I suspected him a little warping to Rome.
John Evelyn's Diary 1671 May. 26 May 1671. The Earl of Bristol's (58) house in Queen's Street was taken for the Commissioners of Trade and Plantations, and furnished with rich hangings of the King's (40). It consisted of seven rooms on a floor, with a long gallery, gardens, etc. This day we met the Duke of Buckingham (43), Earl of Lauderdale (55), Lord Culpeper, Sir George Carteret (61), Vice-Chamberlain, and myself, had the oaths given us by the Earl of Sandwich (45), our President. It was to advise and counsel his Majesty (40), to the best of our abilities, for the well-governing of his Foreign Plantations, etc., the form very little differing from that given to the Privy Council. We then took our places at the Board in the Council-Chamber, a very large room furnished with atlases, maps, charts, globes, etc. Then came the Lord Keeper, Sir Orlando Bridgeman (65), Earl of Arlington (53), Secretary of State, Lord Ashley, Mr. Treasurer (40), Sir John Trevor (34), the other Secretary, Sir John Duncomb (49), Lord Allington (30), Mr. Grey, son to the Lord Grey, Mr. Henry Broncher, Sir Humphrey Winch (49), Sir John Finch, Mr. Waller (65), and Colonel Titus (48), of the bedchamber, with Mr. Slingsby, Secretary to the Council, and two Clerks of the Council, who had all been sworn some days before. Being all set, our Patent was read, and then the additional Patent, in which was recited this new establishment; then, was delivered to each a copy of the Patent, and of instructions: after which, we proceeded to business.
The first thing we did was, to settle the form of a circular letter to the Governors of all his Majesty's (40) Plantations and Territories in the West Indies and Islands thereof, to give them notice to whom they should apply themselves on all occasions, and to render us an account of their present state and government; but, what we most insisted on was, to know the condition of New England, which appearing to be very independent as to their regard to Old England, or his Majesty (40), rich and strong as they now were, there were great debates in what style to write to them; for the condition of that Colony was such, that they were able to contest with all other Plantations about them, and there was fear of their breaking from all dependence on this nation; his Majesty (40), therefore, commended this affair more expressly. We, therefore, thought fit, in the first place, to acquaint ourselves as well as we could of the state of that place, by some whom we heard of that were newly come from thence, and to be informed of their present posture and condition; some of our Council were for sending them a menacing letter, which those who better understood the peevish and touchy humor of that Colony, were utterly against.
A letter was then read from Sir Thomas Modiford (51), Governor of Jamaica; and then the Council broke up.
Having brought an action against one Cocke, for money which he had received for me, it had been referred to an arbitration by the recommendation of that excellent good man, the Chief-Justice Hale (61), but, this not succeeding, I went to advise with that famous lawyer, Mr. Jones, of Gray's Inn, and, 27th of May, had a trial before Chief Justice of the King's Bench Hale; and, after the lawyers had wrangled sufficiently, it was referred to a new arbitration. This was the very first suit at law that ever I had with any creature, and oh, that it might be the last!.
John Evelyn's Diary 1671 June. 26 Jun 1671. To Council, where Lord Arlington (53) acquainted us that it was his Majesty's (41) proposal we should, every one of us, contribute £20 toward building a Council chamber and conveniences somewhere in Whitehall, that his Majesty (41) might come and sit among us, and hear our debates; the money we laid out to be reimbursed out of the contingent moneys already set apart for us, viz, £1,000 yearly. To this we unanimously consented. There came an uncertain bruit from Barbadoes of some disorder there. On my return home I stepped in at the theater to see the new machines for the intended scenes, which were indeed very costly and magnificent.
John Evelyn's Diary 1671 September. 01 Sep 1671. Dined with the Treasurer (41), in company with my Lord Arlington (53), Halifax (37), and Sir Thomas Strickland [Note. Possibly Thomas Strickland 1621-1694 (49) or Thomas Strickland 2nd Baronet Strickland 1639-1684 (32).]; and next day, went home, being the anniversary of the late dreadful fire of London.
09 Oct 1671. 09 Oct 1671 and 10 Oct 1671. I went, after evening service, to London, in order to a journey of refreshment with Mr. Treasurer (41), to Newmarket, where the King (41) then was, in his coach with six brave horses, which we changed thrice, first, at Bishop-Stortford, and last, at Chesterford; so, by night, we got to Newmarket, where Mr. Henry Jermain (35) (nephew to the Earl of St. Alban (66)) lodged me very civilly. We proceeded immediately to Court, the King (41) and all the English gallants being there at their autumnal sports. Supped at the Lord Chamberlain's; and, the next day, after dinner, I was on the heath, where I saw the great match run between Woodcock and Flatfoot, belonging to the King (41), and to Mr. Eliot, of the bedchamber, many thousands being spectators; a more signal race had not been run for many years.
This over, I went that night with Mr. Treasurer (41) to Euston, a palace of Lord Arlington's (53), where we found Monsieur Colbert (46) (the French Ambassador), and the famous new French Maid of Honor, Mademoiselle Querouaille (22), now coming to be in great favor with the King (41). Here was also the Countess of Sunderland (25), and several lords and ladies, who lodged in the house.
During my stay here with Lord Arlington (53), near a fortnight, his Majesty (41) came almost every second day with the Duke (37), who commonly returned to Newmarket, but the King (41) often lay here, during which time I had twice the honor to sit at dinner with him (41), with all freedom. It was universally reported that the fair lady —— [Note. Probably Louise Kéroualle 1st Duchess Portsmouth 1649-1734 (22)], was bedded one of these nights, and the stocking flung, after the manner of a married bride; I acknowledge she was for the most part in her undress all day, and that there was fondness and toying with that young wanton; nay, it was said, I was at the former ceremony; but it is utterly false; I neither saw nor heard of any such thing while I was there, though I had been in her chamber, and all over that apartment late enough, and was myself observing all passages with much curiosity. However, it was with confidence believed she was first made a Miss, as they called these unhappy creatures, with solemnity at this time.
On Sunday, a young Cambridge divine preached an excellent sermon in the chapel, the King (41) and the Duke of York (37) being present.
John Evelyn's Diary 1671 October continued. 16 Oct 1671. Came all the great men from Newmarket, and other parts both of Suffolk and Norfolk, to make their court, the whole house filled from one end to the other with lords, ladies, and gallants; there was such a furnished table, as I had seldom seen, nor anything more splendid and free, so that for fifteen days there were entertained at least 200 people, and half as many horses, besides servants and guards, at infinite expense.
In the morning, we went hunting and hawking; in the afternoon, till almost morning, to cards and dice, yet I must say without noise, swearing, quarrel, or confusion of any sort. I, who was no gamester, had often discourse with the French Ambassador, Colbert (46), and went sometimes abroad on horseback with the ladies to take the air, and now and then to hunting; thus idly passing the time, but not without more often recess to my pretty apartment, where I was quite out of all this hurry, and had leisure when I would, to converse with books, for there is no man more hospitably easy to be withal than my Lord Arlington (53), of whose particular friendship and kindness I had ever a more than ordinary share. His house is a very noble pile, consisting of four pavilions after the French, beside a body of a large house, and, though not built altogether, but formed of additions to an old house (purchased by his Lordship (53) of one Sir T. Rookwood) yet with a vast expense made not only capable and roomsome, but very magnificent and commodious, as well within as without, nor less splendidly furnished. The staircase is very elegant, the garden handsome, the canal beautiful, but the soil dry, barren, and miserably sandy, which flies in drifts as the wind sits. Here my Lord was pleased to advise with me about ordering his plantations of firs, elms, limes, etc., up his park, and in all other places and avenues. I persuaded him to bring his park so near as to comprehend his house within it; which he resolved upon, it being now near a mile to it. The water furnishing the fountains, is raised by a pretty engine, or very slight plain wheels, which likewise serve to grind his corn, from a small cascade of the canal, the invention of Sir Samuel Morland (46). In my Lord's (53) house, and especially above the staircase, in the great hall and some of the chambers and rooms of state, are paintings in fresco by Signor Verrio (35), being the first work which he did in England.
John Evelyn's Diary 1672 March. 12 Mar 1672. Now was the first blow given by us to the Dutch convoy of the Smyrna fleet, by Sir Robert Holmes (32) and Lord Ossory (37), in which we received little save blows, and a worthy reproach for attacking our neighbors ere any war was proclaimed, and then pretending the occasion to be, that some time before, the Merlin yacht chancing to sail through the whole Dutch fleet, their Admiral did not strike to that trifling vessel. Surely, this was a quarrel slenderly grounded, and not becoming Christian neighbors. We are likely to thrive, accordingly. Lord Ossory (37) several times deplored to me his being engaged in it; he had more justice and honor than in the least to approve of it, though he had been over-persuaded to the expedition. There is no doubt but we should have surprised this exceeding rich fleet, had not the avarice and ambition of Holmes (32) and Spragge (52) separated themselves, and willfully divided our fleet, on presumption that either of them was strong enough to deal with the Dutch convoy without joining and mutual help; but they so warmly plied our divided fleets, that while in conflict the merchants sailed away, and got safe into Holland.
A few days before this, the Treasurer of the Household, Sir Thomas Clifford (41), hinted to me, as a confidant, that his Majesty (41) would SHUT UP THE EXCHEQUER (and, accordingly, his Majesty (41) made use of infinite treasure there, to prepare for an intended rupture); but, says he, it will soon be open again, and everybody satisfied; for this bold man, who had been the sole adviser of the King (41) to invade that sacred stock (though some pretend it was Lord Ashley's counsel, then Chancellor of the Exchequer), was so over-confident of the success of this unworthy design against the Smyrna merchants, as to put his Majesty (41) on an action which not only lost the hearts of his subjects, and ruined many widows and orphans, whose stocks were lent him, but the reputation of his Exchequer forever, it being before in such credit, that he might have commanded half the wealth of the nation.
The credit of this bank being thus broken, did exceedingly discontent the people, and never did his Majesty's (41) affairs prosper to any purpose after it, for as it did not supply the expense of the meditated war, so it melted away, I know not how.
To this succeeded the King's (41) declaration for an universal toleration; Papists and swarms of Sectaries, now boldly showing themselves in their public meetings. !This was imputed to the same council, Clifford (41) warping to Rome as was believed, nor was Lord Arlington (54) clear of suspicion, to gratify that party, but as since it has proved, and was then evidently foreseen, to the extreme weakening of the Church of England and its Episcopal Government, as it was projected. I speak not this as my own sense, but what was the discourse and thoughts of others, who were lookers-on; for I think there might be some relaxations without the least prejudice to the present establishment, discreetly limited, but to let go the reins in this manner, and then to imagine they could take them up again as easily, was a false policy, and greatly destructive. The truth is, our Bishops slipped the occasion; for, had they held a steady hand upon his Majesty's (41) restoration, as they might easily have done, the Church of England had emerged and flourished, without interruption; but they were then remiss, and covetous after advantages of another kind while his Majesty (41) suffered them to come into a harvest, with which, without any injustice he might have remunerated innumerable gallant gentlemen for their services who had ruined themselves in the late rebellion.
John Evelyn's Diary 1672 June. 02 Jun 1672. Trinity Sunday, I passed at Rochester; and, on the 5th, there was buried in the Cathedral Monsieur Rabiniére, Rear Admiral of the French squadron, a gallant person, who died of the wounds he received in the fight. This ceremony lay on me, which I performed with all the decency I could, inviting the Mayor and Aldermen to come in their formalities. Sir Jonas Atkins was there with his guards; and the Dean and Prebendaries: one of his countrymen pronouncing a funeral oration at the brink of his grave, which I caused to be dug in the choir. This is more at large described in the "Gazette" of that day; Colonel Reymes (58), my colleague in commission, assisting, who was so kind as to accompany me from London, though it was not his district; for indeed the stress of both these wars lay more on me by far than on any of my brethren, who had little to do in theirs. I went to see Upnor Castle, which I found pretty well defended, but of no great moment.
Next day I sailed to the fleet, now riding at the buoy of the "Nore," where I met his Majesty (42), the Duke (38), Lord Arlington (54), and all the great men, in the "Charles," lying miserably shattered; but the miss of Lord Sandwich redoubled the loss to me, and showed the folly of hazarding so brave a fleet, and losing so many good men, for no provocation but that the Hollanders exceeded us in industry, and in all things but envy.
At Sheerness, I gave his Majesty (42) and his Royal Highness (38) an account of my charge, and returned to Queenborough; next day dined at Major Dorel's, Governor of Sheerness; thence, to Rochester; and the following day, home.
John Evelyn's Diary 1672 August. 01 Aug 1672. I was at the betrothal of Lord Arlington's (54) only daughter (17) (a sweet child if ever there was any to the Duke of Grafton, the King's natural son (8) by the Duchess of Cleveland (31); the Archbishop of Canterbury (74) officiating, the King (42) and the grandees being present. I had a favor given me by my Lady; but took no great joy at the thing for many reasons.
On 01 Aug 1672 Henry Fitzroy 1st Duke Grafton 1663-1690 (8) and [his daughter] Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (17) were married.
John Evelyn's Diary 1673 March. 16 Mar 1673. Dr. Pearson (60), Bishop of Chester, preached on Hebrews ix. 14; a most incomparable sermon from one of the most learned divines of our nation. I dined at my Lord Arlington's (55) with the Duke (23) and Duchess of Monmouth (22); she is one of the wisest and craftiest of her sex, and has much wit. Here was also the learned Isaac Vossius.
During Lent there is constantly the most excellent preaching by the most eminent bishops and divines of the nation.
John Evelyn's Diary 1673 June. 23 Jun 1673. To London, to accompany our Council who went in a body to congratulate the new Lord Treasurer (41), no friend to it because promoted by my Lord Arlington (55), whom he hated.
John Evelyn's Diary 1673 August. 18 Aug 1673. My Lord Clifford (43), being about this time returned from Tunbridge, and preparing for Devonshire, I went to take my leave of him at Wallingford House; he was packing up pictures, most of which were of hunting wild beasts and vast pieces of bull-baiting, bear-baiting, etc. I found him in his study, and restored to him several papers of state, and others of importance, which he had furnished me with, on engaging me to write the "History of the Holland War," with other private letters of his acknowledgments to my Lord Arlington (55), who from a private gentleman of a very noble family, but inconsiderable fortune, had advanced him from almost nothing. The first thing was his being in Parliament, then knighted, then made one of the Commissioners of sick and wounded, on which occasion we sat long together; then, on the death of Hugh Pollard, he was made Comptroller of the Household and Privy Councillor, yet still my brother Commissioner; after the death of Lord Fitz-Harding, Treasurer of the Household, he, by letters to Lord Arlington (55), which that Lord showed me, begged of his Lordship to obtain it for him as the very height of his ambition. These were written with such submissions and professions of his patronage, as I had never seen any more acknowledging. The Earl of Southampton then dying, he was made one of the Commissioners of the Treasury. His Majesty (43) inclining to put it into one hand, my Lord Clifford (43), under pretense of making all his interest for his patron, my Lord Arlington (55), cut the grass under his feet, and procured it for himself, assuring the King (43) that Lord Arlington (55) did not desire it. Indeed, my Lord Arlington (55) protested to me that his confidence in Lord Clifford (43) made him so remiss and his affection to him was so particular, that he was absolutely minded to devolve it on Lord Clifford (43), all the world knowing how he himself affected ease and quiet, now growing into years, yet little thinking of this go-by. This was the great ingratitude Lord Clifford (43) showed, keeping my Lord Arlington (55) in ignorance, continually assuring him he was pursuing his interest, which was the Duke's (39) into whose great favor Lord Clifford (43) was now gotten; but which certainly cost him the loss of all, namely, his going so irrevocably far in his interest.
For the rest, my Lord Clifford (43) was a valiant, incorrupt gentleman, ambitious, not covetous; generous, passionate, a most constant, sincere friend, to me in particular, so as when he laid down his office, I was at the end of all my hopes and endeavors. These were not for high matters, but to obtain what his Majesty (43) was really indebted to my father-in-law, which was the utmost of my ambition, and which I had undoubtedly obtained, if this friend had stood. Sir Thomas Osborn (41), who succeeded him, though much more obliged to my father-in-law and his family, and my long and old acquaintance, being of a more haughty and far less obliging nature, I could hope for little; a man of excellent natural parts; but nothing of generous or grateful.
Taking leave of my Lord Clifford (43), he wrung me by the hand, and, looking earnestly on me, bid me God-b'ye, adding, "Mr. Evelyn, I shall never see thee more." "No!" said I, "my Lord, what's the meaning of this? I hope I shall see you often, and as great a person again." "No, Mr. Evelyn, do not expect it, I will never see this place, this city, or Court again," or words of this sound. In this manner, not without almost mutual tears, I parted from him; nor was it long after, but the news was that he was dead, and I have heard from some who I believe knew, he made himself away, after an extraordinary melancholy. This is not confidently affirmed, but a servant who lived in the house, and afterward with Sir Robert Clayton (44), Lord Mayor, did, as well as others, report it, and when I hinted some such thing to Mr. Prideaux, one of his trustees, he was not willing to enter into that discourse.
It was reported with these particulars, that, causing his servant to leave him unusually one morning, locking himself in, he strangled himself with his cravat upon the bed-tester; his servant, not liking the manner of dismissing him, and looking through the keyhole (as I remember), and seeing his master hanging, broke in before he was quite dead, and taking him down, vomiting a great deal of blood, he was heard to utter these words: "Well; let men say what they will, there is a God, a just God above"; after which he spoke no more. This, if true, is dismal. Really, he was the chief occasion of the Dutch war, and of all that blood which was lost at Bergen in attacking the Smyrna fleet, and that whole quarrel.
This leads me to call to mind what my Lord Chancellor Shaftesbury (52) affirmed, not to me only, but to all my brethren the Council of Foreign Plantations, when not long after, this accident being mentioned as we were one day sitting in Council, his Lordship told us this remarkable passage: that, being one day discoursing with him when he was only Sir Thomas Clifford, speaking of men's advancement to great charges in the nation, "Well," says he, "my Lord, I shall be one of the greatest men in England. Don't impute what I say either to fancy, or vanity; I am certain that I shall be a mighty man; but it will not last long; I shall not hold it, but die a bloody death." "What," says my Lord, "your horoscope tells you so?" "No matter for that, it will be as I tell you." "Well," says my Lord Chancellor Shaftesbury (52), "if I were of that opinion, I either would not be a great man, but decline preferment, or prevent my danger.".
This my Lord affirmed in my hearing before several gentlemen and noblemen sitting in council at Whitehall. And I the rather am confident of it, remembering what Sir Edward Walker (62) (Garter King at Arms) had likewise affirmed to me a long time before, even when he was first made a Lord; that carrying his pedigree to Lord Clifford on his being created a peer, and, finding him busy, he bade him go into his study and divert himself there till he was at leisure to discourse with him about some things relating to his family; there lay, said Sir Edward, on his table, his horoscope and nativity calculated, with some writing under it, where he read that he should be advanced to the highest degree in the state that could be conferred upon him, but that he should not long enjoy it, but should die, or expressions to that sense; and I think, (but cannot confidently say) a bloody death. This Sir Edward affirmed both to me and Sir Richard Browne; nor could I forbear to note this extraordinary passage in these memoirs..
In 1674 Joseph Williamson Secretary of State 1633-1701 (40) was appointed Secretary of State for the Northern Department having practically purchased this position from Arlington (56) for £6,000.
John Evelyn's Diary 1674 July. 22 Jul 1674. I went to Windsor with my wife (39) and son (19) to see my daughter Mary (9), who was there with my Lady Tuke and to do my duty to his Majesty (44). Next day, to a great entertainment at Sir Robert Holmes's (52) at Cranbourne Lodge, in the Forest; there were his Majesty (44), the Queen (35), Duke (40), Duchess (15), and all the Court. I returned in the evening with Sir Joseph Williamson (40), now declared Secretary of State. He was son of a poor clergyman somewhere in Cumberland, brought up at Queen's College, Oxford, of which he came to be a fellow; then traveled with ... and returning when the King (44) was restored, was received as a clerk under Mr. Secretary Nicholas. Sir Henry Bennett (56) (now Lord Arlington) succeeding, Williamson is transferred to him, who loving his ease more than business (though sufficiently able had he applied himself to it) remitted all to his man Williamson; and, in a short time, let him so into the secret of affairs, that (as his Lordship himself told me) there was a kind of necessity to advance him; and so, by his subtlety, dexterity, and insinuation, he got now to be principal Secretary; absolutely Lord Arlington's creature, and ungrateful enough. It has been the fate of this obliging favorite to advance those who soon forgot their original. Sir Joseph was a musician, could play at Jeu de Goblets, exceedingly formal, a severe master to his servants, but so inward with my Lord O'Brien (32), that after a few months of that gentleman's death, he married his widow (34), who, being sister and heir of the Duke of Richmond, brought him a noble fortune. It was thought they lived not so kindly after marriage as they did before. She was much censured for marrying so meanly, being herself allied to the Royal family.
John Evelyn's Diary 1674 September. 21 Sep 1674. I went to see the great loss that Lord Arlington (56) had sustained by fire at Goring House, this night consumed to the ground, with exceeding loss of hangings, plate, rare pictures, and cabinets; hardly anything was saved of the best and most princely furniture that any subject had in England. My lord (56) and lady (40) were both absent at the Bath.
John Evelyn's Diary 1675 October. 24 Oct 1675. Dined at Lord Chamberlain's (57) with the Holland Ambassador L. Duras (34), a valiant gentleman whom his Majesty (45) made an English Baron, of a cadet, and gave him his seat of Holmby, in Northamptonshire.
John Evelyn's Diary 1675 October. 27 Oct 1675. Lord Berkeley (47) coming into Council, fell down in the gallery at Whitehall, in a fit of apoplexy, and being carried into my Lord Chamberlain's (57) lodgings, several famous doctors were employed all that night, and with much ado he was at last recovered to some sense, by applying hot fire pans and spirit of amber to his head; but nothing was found so effectual as cupping him on the shoulders. It was almost a miraculous restoration. The next day he was carried to Berkeley House. This stopped his journey for the present, and caused my stay in town. He had put all his affairs and his whole estate in England into my hands during his intended absence, which though I was very unfit to undertake, in regard of many businesses which then took me up, yet, upon the great importunity of my lady (23) and Mr. Godolphin (30) (to whom I could refuse nothing) I did take it on me. It seems when he was Deputy in Ireland, not long before, he had been much wronged by one he left in trust with his affairs, and therefore wished for some unmercenary friend who would take that trouble on him; this was to receive his rents, look after his houses and tenants, solicit supplies from the Lord Treasurer (43), and correspond weekly with him, more than enough to employ any drudge in England; but what will not friendship and love make one do?.
John Evelyn's Diary 1675 October. 31 Oct 1675. Dined at my Lord Chamberlain's (57), with my son (20). There were the learned Isaac Vossius, and Spanhemius, son of the famous man of Heidelberg; nor was this gentleman less learned, being a general scholar. Among other pieces, he was author of an excellent treatise on Medals.
John Evelyn's Diary 1676 June. 02 Jun 1676. I went with my Lord Chamberlain (58) to see a garden, at Enfield town; thence, to Mr. Secretary Coventry's (48) lodge in the Chase. It is a very pretty place, the house commodious, the gardens handsome, and our entertainment very free, there being none but my Lord and myself. That which I most wondered at was, that, in the compass of twenty-five miles, yet within fourteen of London, there is not a house, barn, church, or building, besides three lodges. To this Lodge are three great ponds, and some few inclosures, the rest a solitary desert, yet stored with no less than 3,000 deer. These are pretty retreats for gentlemen, especially for those who are studious and lovers of privacy.
We returned in the evening by Hampstead, to see Lord Wotton's (33) house and garden (Bellsize House), built with vast expense by Mr. O'Neale, an Irish gentleman who married Lord Wotton's mother, Baroness Stanhope. The furniture is very particular for Indian cabinets, porcelain, and other solid and noble movables. The gallery very fine, the gardens very large, but ill kept, yet woody and chargeable. The soil a cold weeping clay, not answering the expense.
John Evelyn's Diary 1676 August. 26 Aug 1676. I dined at the Admiralty with Secretary Pepys (43), and supped at the Lord Chamberlain's (58). Here was Captain Baker, who had been lately on the attempt of the Northwest passage. He reported prodigious depth of ice, blue as a sapphire, and as transparent. The thick mists were their chief impediment, and cause of their return.
John Evelyn's Diary 1676 September. 06 Sep 1676. Supped at the Lord Chamberlain's (58), where also supped the famous beauty and errant lady, the Duchess of Mazarine (30) (all the world knows her story), the Duke of Monmouth (27), Countess of Sussex (15) (both natural children of the King (46) by the Duchess of Cleveland (35)) [Note. A mistake by Evelyn. Jame's Scott's (27) mother was Lucy Walter 1630-1658, Anne Fitzroy's (15) mother was Barbara Villiers 1st Duchess of Cleveland 1640-1709 (35)], and the Countess of Derby (16), a virtuous lady, daughter to my best friend, the Earl of Ossory (42).
John Evelyn's Diary 1676 November. 16 Nov 1676. My son (21) and I dining at my Lord Chamberlain's (58), he showed us among others that incomparable piece of Raphael's, being a Minister of State dictating to Guicciardini, the earnestness of whose face looking up in expectation of what he was next to write, is so to the life, and so natural, as I esteem it one of the choicest pieces of that admirable artist. There was a woman's head of Leonardo da Vinci; a Madonna of old Palma, and two of Vandyke's, of which one was his own picture at length, when young, in a leaning posture; the other, an eunuch, singing. Rare pieces indeed!.
John Evelyn's Diary 1677 September. 07 Sep 1677. There dined this day at my Lord's (59) one Sir John Gaudy (37), a very handsome person, but quite dumb, yet very intelligent by signs, and a very fine painter; he was so civil and well bred, as it was not possible to discern any imperfection in him. His lady and children were also there, and he was at church in the morning with us.
John Evelyn's Diary 1677 September. 09 Sep 1677. A stranger preached at Euston Church, and fell into a handsome panegyric on my Lord's (59) new building the church, which indeed for its elegance and cheerfulness, is one of the prettiest country churches in England. My Lord (59) told me his heart smote him that, after he had bestowed so much on his magnificent palace there, he should see God's House in the ruin it lay in. He has also rebuilt the parsonage-house, all of stone, very neat and ample.
John Evelyn's Diary 1677 September. 10 Sep 1677. To divert me, my Lord (59) would needs carry me to see Ipswich, when we dined with one Mr. Mann by the way, who was Recorder of the town. There were in our company my Lord Huntingtower (28), son to the Duchess of Lauderdale (50), Sir Edward Bacon, a learned gentleman of the family of the great Chancellor Verulam, and Sir John Felton, with some other knights and gentlemen. After dinner came the bailiff and magistrates in their formalities with their maces to compliment my Lord (59), and invite him to the town-house, where they presented us a collation of dried sweetmeats and wine, the bells ringing, etc. Then, we went to see the town, and first, the Lord Viscount Hereford's (3) house, which stands in a park near the town, like that at Brussels, in Flanders; the house not great, yet pretty, especially the hall. The stews for fish succeeded one another, and feed one the other, all paved at bottom. There is a good picture of the blessed virgin in one of the parlors, seeming to be of Holbein, or some good master. Then we saw the Haven, seven miles from Harwich. The tide runs out every day, but the bedding being soft mud, it is safe for shipping and a station. The trade of Ipswich is for the most part Newcastle on Tyne coals, with which they supply London; but it was formerly a clothing town. There is not any beggar asks alms in the whole place, a thing very extraordinary, so ordered by the prudence of the magistrates. It has in it fourteen or fifteen beautiful churches: in a word, it is for building, cleanness, and good order, one of the best towns in England. Cardinal Wolsey was a butcher's son of Ipswich, but there is little of that magnificent Prelate's foundation here, besides a school and I think a library, which I did not see. His intentions were to build some great thing. We returned late to Euston, having traveled about fifty miles this day.
Since first I was at this place, I found things exceedingly improved. It is seated in a bottom between two graceful swellings, the main building being now in the figure of a Greek II with four pavilions, two at each corner, and a break in the front, railed and balustered at the top, where I caused huge jars to be placed full of earth to keep them steady upon their pedestals between the statues, which make as good a show as if they were of stone, and, though the building be of brick, and but two stories besides cellars and garrets covered with blue slate, yet there is room enough for a full court, the offices and outhouses being so ample and well disposed. the King's (47) apartment is painted à fresco, and magnificently furnished. There are many excellent pictures of the great masters. The gallery is a pleasant, noble room; in the break, or middle, is a billiard table, but the wainscot, being of fir, and painted, does not please me so well as Spanish oak without paint. The chapel is pretty, the porch descending to the gardens. The orange garden is very fine, and leads into the greenhouse, at the end of which is a hall to eat in, and the conservatory some hundred feet long, adorned with maps, as the other side is with the heads of the Cæsars, ill cut in alabaster; above are several apartments for my Lord, Lady, and Duchess, with kitchens and other offices below, in a lesser form; lodgings for servants, all distinct for them to retire to when they please and would be in private, and have no communication with the palace, which he tells me he will wholly resign to his son-in-law and daughter, that charming young creature.
The canal running under my Lady's (43) dressing room chamber window, is full of carps and fowl, which come and are fed there. The cascade at the end of the canal turns a cornmill that provides the family, and raises water for the fountains and offices. To pass this canal into the opposite meadows, Sir Samuel Morland (52) has invented a screw bridge, which, being turned with a key, lands you fifty feet distant at the entrance of an ascending walk of trees, a mile in length,—as it is also on the front into the park,—of four rows of ash trees, and reaches to the park pale, which is nine miles in compass, and the best for riding and meeting the game that I ever saw. There were now of red and fallow deer almost a thousand, with good covert, but the soil barren and flying sand, in which nothing will grow kindly. The tufts of fir, and much of the other wood, were planted by my direction some years before. This seat is admirably placed for field sports, hawking, hunting, or racing. The mutton is small, but sweet. The stables hold thirty horses and four coaches. The out-offices make two large quadrangles, so as servants never lived with more ease and convenience; never master more civil. Strangers are attended and accommodated as at their home, in pretty apartments furnished with all manner of conveniences and privacy.
There is a library full of excellent books; bathing rooms, elaboratory, dispensary, a decoy, and places to keep and fat fowl in. He had now in his new church (near the garden) built a dormitory, or vault, with several repositories, in which to bury his family.
In the expense of this pious structure, the church is most laudable, most of the houses of God in this country resembling rather stables and thatched cottages than temples in which to serve the Most High. He has built a lodge in the park for the keeper, which is a neat dwelling, and might become any gentleman. The same has he done for the parson, little deserving it for murmuring that my Lord put him some time out of his wretched hovel, while it was building. He has also erected a fair inn at some distance from his palace, with a bridge of stone over a river near it, and repaired all the tenants' houses, so as there is nothing but neatness and accommodations about his estate, which I yet think is not above £1,500 a year. I believe he had now in his family one hundred domestic servants.
His lady (43) (being one of the Brederode's daughters, grandchild to a natural son of Henry Frederick, Prince of Orange) [Note. Evelyn confused here. [his wife] Elisabeth Nassau Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (43) was the daughter of Louis Nassau Beverweert 1602-1665 who was the illegitimate son of Maurice Orange Nassau I Prince Orange 1567-1625. Frederick Henry Orange Nassau II Prince Orange 1584-1647 was the younger brother of Maurice Orange Nassau I Prince Orange 1567-1625.] is a good-natured and obliging woman. They love fine things, and to live easily, pompously, and hospitably; but, with so vast expense, as plunges my Lord (59) into debts exceedingly. My Lord (59) himself is given into no expensive vice but building, and to have all things rich, polite, and princely. He never plays, but reads much, having the Latin, French, and Spanish tongues in perfection. He has traveled much, and is the best bred and courtly person his Majesty (47) has about him, so as the public Ministers more frequent him than any of the rest of the nobility. While he was Secretary of State and Prime Minister, he had gotten vastly, but spent it as hastily, even before he had established a fund to maintain his greatness; and now beginning to decline in favor (the Duke being no great friend of his), he knows not how to retrench. He was son of a Doctor of Laws, whom I have seen, and, being sent from Westminster School to Oxford, with intention to be a divine, and parson of Arlington, a village near Brentford, when Master of Arts the Rebellion falling out, he followed the King's (47) Army, and receiving an HONORABLE WOUND IN THE FACE, grew into favor, and was advanced from a mean fortune, at his Majesty's (47) Restoration, to be an Earl and Knight of the Garter, Lord Chamberlain of the Household, and first favorite for a long time, during which the King (47) married his natural son, the Duke of Grafton (13), to his only daughter (22) and heiress, as before mentioned, worthy for her beauty and virtue of the greatest prince in Christendom. My Lord is, besides this, a prudent and understanding person in business, and speaks well; unfortunate yet in those he has advanced, most of them proving ungrateful. The many obligations and civilities I have received from this noble gentleman, extracts from me this character, and I am sorry he is in no better circumstances.
Having now passed near three weeks at Euston, to my great satisfaction, with much difficulty he suffered me to look homeward, being very earnest with me to stay longer; and, to engage me, would himself have carried me to Lynn-Regis, a town of important traffic, about twenty miles beyond, which I had never seen; as also the Traveling Sands, about ten miles wide of Euston, that have so damaged the country, rolling from place to place, and, like the Sands in the Deserts of Lybia, quite overwhelmed some gentlemen's whole estates, as the relation extant in print, and brought to our Society, describes at large.
John Evelyn's Diary 1678 February. 08 Feb 1678. Supping at my Lord Chamberlain's (60) I had a long discourse with the Count de Castel Mellor, lately Prime Minister in Portugal, who, taking part with his master, King Alphonso (34), was banished by his brother, Don Pedro (28), now Regent; but had behaved himself so uncorruptly in all his ministry that, though he was acquitted, and his estate restored, yet would they not suffer him to return. He is a very intelligent and worthy gentleman.
John Evelyn's Diary 1678 June. 28 Jun 1678. I went to Windsor with my Lord Chamberlain (60) (the castle now repairing with exceeding cost) to see the rare work of Verrio (42), an incomparable carving of Gibbons (30).
John Evelyn's Diary 1678 June. 29 Jun 1678. Returned with my Lord (60) by Hounslow Heath, where we saw the newly raised army encamped, designed against France, in pretense, at least; but which gave umbrage to the Parliament. His Majesty (48) and a world of company were in the field, and the whole army in battalia; a very glorious sight. Now were brought into service a new sort of soldiers, called Grenadiers, who were dexterous in flinging hand grenades, everyone having a pouch full; they had furred caps with coped crowns like Janizaries, which made them look very fierce, and some had long hoods hanging down behind, as we picture fools. Their clothing being likewise piebald, yellow and red.
John Evelyn's Diary 1679 August. 08 Aug 1679. I went this morning to show my Lord Chamberlain (61), his Lady (45), and the Duchess of Grafton (24), the incomparable work of Mr. Gibbon (31), the carver, whom I first recommended to his Majesty (49), his house being furnished like a cabinet, not only with his own work, but divers excellent paintings of the best hands. Thence, to Sir Stephen Fox's (52), where we spent the day.
John Evelyn's Diary 1679 November. 06 Nov 1679. Dined at the Countess of Sunderland's (33), and was this evening at the remarriage of the Duchess of Grafton (24) to the Duke (16) his Majesty's (49) natural son), she being now twelve years old. The ceremony was performed in my Lord Chamberlain's (61) (her father's) lodgings at Whitehall by the Bishop of Rochester (54), his Majesty (49) being present. A sudden and unexpected thing, when everybody believed the first marriage would have come to nothing; but, the measure being determined, I was privately invited by my Lady (45), her mother, to be present. I confess I could give her little joy, and so I plainly told her, but she said the King (49) would have it so, and there was no going back. This sweetest, most hopeful, most beautiful, child, and most virtuous, too, was sacrificed to a boy that had been rudely bred, without anything to encourage them but his Majesty's (49) pleasure. I pray God the sweet child find it to her advantage, who, if my augury deceive me not, will in a few years be such a paragon as were fit to make the wife of the greatest Prince in Europe! I staid supper, where his Majesty (49) sat between the Duchess of Cleveland (38) (the mother of the Duke of Grafton) and the sweet Duchess (24) the bride; there were several great persons and ladies, without pomp. My love to my Lord Arlington's (61) family, and the sweet child made me behold all this with regret, though as the Duke of Grafton (16) affects the sea, to which I find his father intends to use him, he may emerge a plain, useful and robust officer: and were he polished, a tolerable person; for he is exceedingly handsome, by far surpassing any of the King's (49) other natural issue.
John Evelyn's Diary 1683 October. 10 Oct 1683. Visited the Duchess of Grafton (28), not yet brought to bed, and dining with my Lord Chamberlain (her father) (65), went with them to see Montague House, a palace lately built by Lord Montague (44), who had married the most beautiful Countess of Northumberland (29). It is a stately and ample palace. Signor Verrio's (47) fresco paintings, especially the funeral pile of Dido, on the staircase, the labors of Hercules, fight with the Centaurs, his effeminacy with Dejanira, and Apotheosis or reception among the gods, on the walls and roof of the great room above,—I think exceeds anything he has yet done, both for design, coloring, and exuberance of invention, comparable to the greatest of the old masters, or what they so celebrate at Rome. In the rest of the chamber are some excellent paintings of Holbein, and other masters. The garden is large, and in good air, but the fronts of the house not answerable to the inside. The court at entry, and wings for offices seem too near the street, and that so very narrow and meanly built, that the corridor is not in proportion to the rest, to hide the court from being overlooked by neighbors; all which might have been prevented, had they placed the house further into the ground, of which there was enough to spare. But on the whole it is a fine palace, built after the French pavilion-way, by Mr. Hooke, the Curator of the Royal Society. There were with us my Lady Scroope, the great wit, and Monsieur Chardine (39), the celebrated traveler.
John Evelyn's Diary 1685 February. 17 Feb 1685. This morning his Ma* (51) restor'd the staffe and key to Lord Arlington (67), Chamberlaine; to Mr. Savell (43), Vice-chamberlaine; to Lords Newport (64) and Malnard (62), Treasurer and Comptroler of the Household;.
On 28 Jul 1685 Henry Bennet 1st Earl Arlington 1618-1685 (67) died. His daughter Isabella Bennet Duchess Grafton 1655-1723 (30) succeeded 2nd Earl Arlington, 2nd Baron Arlington Harlington in Middlesex.
John Evelyn's Diary 1685 October. 02 Oct 1685. Having a letter sent me by Mr. Pepys (52) with this expression at the foote of it, "I have something to shew you that I may not have another time," and that I would not faile to dine with him, I accordingly went. After dinner he had me and Mr. Houblon (a rich and considerable merchant, whose father had fled out of Flanders on the persecution of the Duke of Alva) into a private roome, and told us that being lately alone with his Ma*, and upon some occasion of speaking concerning my late Lord Arlington dying a Roman Catholic, who had all along seem'd to profess himselfe a Protestant, taken all the tests, &c. till the day (I think) of his death, his Ma* sayd that as to his inclinations he had known him long wavering, but from feare of looseing his places he did not think it convenient to declare himself. There are, says the King, those who believe the Church of Rome gives dispensations for going to church, and many like things, but that is not so; for if that might have ben had, he himselfe had most reason to make use of it. Indeede, he said, as to some matrimonial cases, there are now and then dispensations, but hardly in any cases else. This familiar discourse encourag'd Mr. Pepys to beg of his Ma*, if he might ask it without offence, and for that his Ma* could not but observe how it was whisper'd among many, whether his late Ma* bad ben reconcil'd to ye Church of Rome; he againe humbly besought his Ma* to pardon his presumption if he had touch'd upon a thing which did not befit him to looke into : the King ingenuously told him that he both was and died a Roman Catholic, and that he had not long since declar'd it was upon some politic and state reasons, best known to himselfe (meaning the King his brother) but that he was of that persuasion : he bid him follow him into his closet, where opening a cabinet, he shew'd him two papers, containing about a quarter of a sheete, on both sides written, in the late King's owne hand, severall arguments opposite to the doctrine of the Church of England, charging her with heresy, novelty and ye fanaticism of other Protestants, the cheif whereof was, as I remember, our refusing to acknowledge the Primacy and Infallibility of the Church of Rome; how impossible it was that so many ages should never dispute it, till of late; how unlikely our Saviour would leave his Church without a visible head and guide to resort to, during his absence; with the like usual topics; so well penn'd as to the discourse as did by no means seeme to me to have ben put together by the late King, yet written all with his owne hand, blotted and interlin'd, so as, if indeede it was not given him by some priest, they might be such arguments and reasons as had ben inculcated from time to time, and here recollected; and in the conclusion shewing his looking on the Protestant Religion (and by name the Church of England) to be without foundation, and consequently false and unsafe. When his Ma* had shewn him these originals, he was pleas'd to lend him the copies of those two papers, attested at the bottome in 4 or 5 lines, under his owne hand.
These were the papers I saw and read. This nice and curious passage I thought fit to set downe. Tho' all the arguments and objections were altogether weake, and have a thousand times ben answer'd by our Divines; they are such as their Priests insinuate among their proselites, as if nothing were Catholiq but the Church of Rome, no salvation out of that, no reformation sufferable, bottoming all their errors on St. Peter's successors unerrable dictatorship, but proving nothing with any reason, or taking notice of any objection which could be made against it. Here all was taken for granted, and upon it a resolution and preference implied. I was heartily sorry to see all this, tho' it was no other than was to be suspected, by his late Ma*s too greate indiffer ence, neglect, and course of life, that he had ben perverted, and for secular respects onely profess'd to be of another beliefe, and thereby giving greate advantage to our adversaries, both the Court and generaly the youth and greate persons of the Nation becoming dissolute and highly profane. God was incens'd to make his reign very troublesome and unprosperous, by warrs, plagues, fires, losse of reputation by an universal neglect of the publique for the love of a voluptuous and sensual life, wc?? a vlcions?? Court had brought into credit. I think of it with sorrow and pity when I consider of how good and debonaire a nature that unhappy Prince was, what opportunities he had to have made himselfe the most renown'd King that ever sway'd the British scepter, had he ben firm to that Church for wch his martyr'd and blessed father suffer'd; and had he ben gratefull to Almighty God, who so miraculously restor'd him, with so excellent a Religion; had he endeavour'd to owne and propagate it as he should have don, not onely for the good of his Kingdom, but of all the Reformed Churches in Christendom, now weaken'd and neere ruin'd thro' our remissnesse and suffering them to be suplanted, persecuted and destroy'd, as in France, which we tooke no notice of. The consequence of this time will shew, and I wish it may proceed no further. The emissaries and instruments of the Church of Rome will never rest till they have crush'd the Church of England, as knowing that alone to be able to cope with them, and that they can never answer her fairly, but lie aboundantly open to the irresistable force of her arguments, antiquity and purity of her doctrine, so that albeit it may move God, for the punishment of a Nation so unworthy, to eclipse againe the profession of her here, and darknesse and superstition prevaile, I am most confident the doctrine of the Church of England will never be extinguish'd, but remaine visible, if not eminent, to ye consummation of the world. I have innumerable reasons that confirm me in this opinion, which I forbear to mention here. In the mean time as to the discourse of his Ma* with Mr. Pepys, and those papers, as I do exceedingly prefer his Majesty's free and in genuous profession of what his own Religion is, beyond concealment upon any politic accounts, so I thinke him of a most sincere and honest nature, one on whose word one may relie, and that he makes a con science of what he promises, to performe it. In this confidence I hope that the Church of England may yet subsist, and when it shall please God to open his eyes and turne his heart (for that is peculiarly in the Lord's hands) to flourish also. In all events whatever do become of the Church of England, it is certainely, of all the Christian professions on the earth, the most primitive, apostolical and excellent.
On 18 Jan 1718 [his former wife] Elisabeth Nassau Beverweert Countess Arlington 1633-1718 (84) died.
[his father] John Bennet 1563-1626 and [his mother] Dorothy Crofts 1588-1659 were married.
Kings Wessex: Great x 25 Grand Son of Æthelwulf King Wessex -858
Kings Gwynedd: Great x 16 Grand Son of Owain "Great" King Gwynedd 1100-1170
Kings Seisyllwg: Great x 22 Grand Son of Hywel "Dda aka Good" King Seisyllwg King Deheubarth 880-950
Kings Powys: Great x 17 Grand Son of Maredudd ap Bleddyn King Powys 1047-1132
Kings England: Great x 11 Grand Son of King Edward III England
Kings Scotland: Great x 15 Grand Son of William "Lion" I King Scotland 1143-1214
Kings Franks: Great x 16 Grand Son of Louis VII King Franks 1120-1180
Kings France: Great x 13 Grand Son of Philip "Fair" IV King France 1268-1314
Father: John Bennet 1563-1626
Mother: Dorothy Crofts 1588-1659 10 x great granddaughter of King Edward III England
GrandFather: John Crofts 1563-1628 9 x great grandson of King Edward III England
Great GrandFather: Thomas Crofts 1540-1612
Great x 2 GrandFather: Edmund Croftes 1520-1558
Great x 3 GrandFather: John Crofts 1491-1558
Great x 2 GrandMother: Elizabeth Kitson 1511-1586
Great x 3 GrandFather: Thomas Kitson 1485-1540
Great x 3 GrandMother: Margaret Donnington Countess Bath Count Eu 1509-1561
Great GrandMother: Susannah Crofts 1539-1603 8 x great granddaughter of King Edward III England
Great x 2 GrandFather: John Poley 1511-1589
Great x 2 GrandMother: Anne Wentworth 1520-1575 7 x great granddaughter of King Edward III England
Great x 3 GrandFather: Thomas Wentworth 1st Baron Wentworth 1501-1551 6 x great grandson of King Edward III England
Great x 3 GrandMother: Margaret Fortescue Baroness Wentworth
GrandMother: Mary Shirley -1649
Great GrandFather: Thomas Shirley 1542-1612
Great x 2 GrandFather: William Shirley 1498-1551
Great x 3 GrandFather: Richard Shirley 1478-1540
Great GrandMother: Anne Kempe 1544-1622
Great x 2 GrandFather: Thomas Kempe 1513-1591
Great x 3 GrandFather: William Kempe 1487-1535
Great x 2 GrandMother: Katherine Cheney -1549
Great x 3 GrandFather: Thomas Cheney Treasurer 1485-1558
Great x 3 GrandMother: Frideswide Frowyk -1528