Diary of Samuel Pepys 03 May 1664. 03 May 1664. Up, and being ready, went by agreement to Mr. Bland's and there drank my morning draft in good chocollatte, and slabbering my band sent home for another, and so he and I by water to White Hall, and walked to St. James's, where met Creed and Vernaty, and by and by Sir W. Rider, and so to Mr. Coventry's (36) chamber, and there upon my Lord Peterborough's (42) accounts, where I endeavoured to shew the folly and punish it as much as I could of Mr. Povy (50); for, of all the men in the world, I never knew any man of his degree so great a coxcomb in such imployments. I see I have lost him forever, but I value it not; for he is a coxcomb, and, I doubt, not over honest, by some things which I see; and yet, for all his folly, he hath the good lucke, now and then, to speak his follies in as good words, and with as good a show, as if it were reason, and to the purpose, which is really one of the wonders of my life.
Thence walked to Westminster Hall; and there, in the Lords' House, did in a great crowd, from ten o'clock till almost three, hear the cause of Mr. Roberts (30), my Lord Privy Seal's (58) son, against Win, who by false ways did get the father of Mr. Roberts's wife (27) (Mr. Bodvill (47)) to give him the estate and disinherit his daughter (27). The cause was managed for my Lord Privy Seal (58) by Finch (42) the Solicitor [General]; but I do really think that he is truly a man of as great eloquence as ever I heard, or ever hope to hear in all my life.
Thence, after long staying to speak with my Lord Sandwich (38), at last he coming out to me and speaking with me about business of my Lord Peterborough (42), I by coach home to the office, where all the afternoon, only stept home to eat one bit and to the office again, having eaten nothing before to-day.
I in the evening to my uncle Wight's (62), and not finding them come home, they being gone to the Parke and the Mulberry garden, I went to the 'Change, and there meeting with Mr. Hempson, whom Sir W. Batten (63) has lately turned out of his place, merely because of his coming to me when he came to town before he went to him, and there he told me many rogueries of Sir W. Batten (63), how he knows and is able to prove that Captain Cox of Chatham did give him £10 in gold to get him to certify for him at the King's coming in, and that Tom Newborne did make [the] poor men give him £3 to get Sir W. Batten (63) to cause them to be entered in the yard, and that Sir W. Batten (63) had oftentimes said: "by God, Tom, you shall get something and I will have some on't". His present clerk that is come in Norman's' room has given him something for his place; that they live high and (as Sir Francis Clerk's lady told his wife) do lack money as well as other people, and have bribes of a piece of sattin and cabinetts and other things from people that deal with him, and that hardly any body goes to see or hath anything done by Sir W. Batten (63) but it comes with a bribe, and that this is publickly true that his wife was a whore, and that he had libells flung within his doors for a cuckold as soon as he was married; that he received £100 in money and in other things to the value of £50 more of Hempson, and that he intends to give him back but £50; that he hath abused the Chest and hath now some £1000 by him of it.
I met also upon the 'Change with Mr. Cutler, and he told me how for certain Lawson (49) hath proclaimed warr again with Algiers, though they had at his first coming given back the ships which they had taken, and all their men; though they refused afterwards to make him restitution for the goods which they had taken out of them.
Thence to my uncle Wight's (62), and he not being at home I went with Mr. Norbury near hand to the Fleece, a mum house in Leadenhall, and there drunk mum and by and by broke up, it being about 11 o'clock at night, and so leaving them also at home, went home myself and to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 08 September 1667. 08 Sep 1667. Lord's Day. Up, and walked to St. James's; but there I find Sir W. Coventry (39) gone from his chamber, and Mr. Wren (38) not yet come thither. But I up to the Duke of York (33), and there, after being ready, my Lord Bruncker (47) and I had an audience, and thence with my Lord Bruncker (47) to White Hall, and he told me, in discourse, how that, though it is true that Sir W. Coventry (39) did long since propose to the Duke of York (33) the leaving his service, as being unable to fulfill it, as he should do, now he hath so much public business, and that the Duke of York (33) did bid him to say nothing of it, but that he would take time to please himself in another to come in his place; yet the Duke's doing it at this time, declaring that he hath found out another, and this one of the Chancellor's (58) servants, he cannot but think was done with some displeasure, and that it could not well be otherwise, that the Duke of York (33) should keep one in that place, that had so eminently opposed him in the defence of his father-in-law, nor could the Duchesse ever endure the sight of him, to be sure. But he thinks that the Duke of York (33) and he are parted upon clear terms of friendship.
He tells me he do believe that my Baroness Castlemayne (26) is compounding with the King (37) for a pension, and to leave the Court; but that her demands are mighty high: but he believes the King (37) is resolved, and so do every body else I speak with, to do all possible to please the Parliament; and he do declare that he will deliver every body up to them to give an account of their actions: and that last Friday, it seems, there was an Act of Council passed, to put out all Papists in office, and to keep out any from coming in.
I went to the King's Chapel to the closet, and there I hear Cresset sing a tenor part along with the Church musick very handsomely, but so loud that people did laugh at him, as a thing done for ostentation. Here I met Sir G. Downing (42), who would speak with me, and first to inquire what I paid for my kid's leather gloves I had on my hand, and shewed me others on his, as handsome, as good in all points, cost him but 12d. a pair, and mine me 2s. He told me he had been seven years finding out a man that could dress English sheepskin as it should be—and, indeed, it is now as good, in all respects, as kid, and he says will save £100,000 a-year, that goes out to France for kid's skins. Thus he labours very worthily to advance our own trade, but do it with mighty vanity and talking. But then he told me of our base condition, in the treaty with Holland and France, about our prisoners, that whereas before we did clear one another's prisoners, man for man, and we upon the publication of the peace did release all our's, 300 at Leith, and others in other places for nothing, the Dutch do keep theirs, and will not discharge them with[out] paying their debts according to the Treaty. That his instruments in Holland, writing to our Embassadors about this to Bredagh, they answer them that they do not know of any thing that they have done therein, but left it just as it was before. To which, when they answer, that by the treaty their Lordships had [not] bound our countrymen to pay their debts in prison, they answer they cannot help it, and we must get them off as cheap as we can. On this score, they demand £1100 for Sir G. Ascue (51), and £5000 for the one province of Zealand, for the prisoners that we have therein. He says that this is a piece of shame that never any nation committed, and that our very Lords here of the Council, when he related this matter to them, did not remember that they had agreed to this article; and swears that all their articles are alike, as the giving away Polleroon, and Surinam, and Nova Scotia, which hath a river 300 miles up the country, with copper mines more than Swedeland, and Newcastle coals, the only place in America that hath coals that we know of; and that Cromwell did value those places, and would for ever have made much of them; but we have given them away for nothing, besides a debt to the King of Denmarke (58). But, which is most of all, they have discharged those very particular demands of merchants of the Guinny company and others, which he, when he was there, had adjusted with the Dutch, and come to an agreement in writing, and they undertaken to satisfy, and that this was done in black and white under their hands; and yet we have forgiven all these, and not so much as sent to Sir G. Downing (42) to know what he had done, or to confer with him about any one point of the treaty, but signed to what they would have, and we here signed to whatever in grosse was brought over by Mr. Coventry (39). And [Sir G. Downing (42)] tells me, just in these words, "My Chancellor (58) had a mind to keep himself from being questioned by clapping up a peace upon any terms". When I answered that there was other privy-councillors to be advised with besides him, and that, therefore, this whole peace could not be laid to his charge, he answered that nobody durst say any thing at the council-table but himself, and that the King (37) was as much afeard of saying any thing there as the meanest privy-councillor; and says more, that at this day the King (37), in familiar talk, do call the Chancellor (58) "the insolent man", and says that he would not let him speak himself in Council: which is very high, and do shew that the Chancellor (58) is like to be in a bad state, unless he can defend himself better than people think. And yet Creed tells me that he do hear that my Lord Cornbury do say that his father do long for the coming of the Parliament, in order to his own vindication, more than any one of his enemies.
And here it comes into my head to set down what Mr. Rawlinson, whom I met in Fenchurch Street on Friday last, looking over his ruines there, told me, that he was told by one of my Chancellor's (58) gentlemen lately (————byname), that a grant coming to him to be sealed, wherein the King (37) hath given her [Baroness Castlemaine (26)], or somebody by her means, a place which he did not like well of, he did stop the grant; saying, that he thought this woman would sell everything shortly: which she hearing of, she sent to let him know that she had disposed of this place, and did not doubt, in a little time, to dispose of his. This Rawlinson do tell me my Chancellor's (58) own gentleman did tell him himself.
Thence, meeting Creed, I with him to the Parke, there to walk a little, and to the Queen's Chapel and there hear their musique, which I liked in itself pretty well as to the composition, but their voices are very harsh and rough that I thought it was some instruments they had that made them sound so.
So to White Hall, and saw the King (37) and Queen (28) at dinner; and observed (which I never did before), the formality, but it is but a formality, of putting a bit of bread wiped upon each dish into the mouth of every man that brings a dish; but it should be in the sauce. Here were some Russes come to see the King (37) at dinner: among others, the interpreter, a comely Englishman, in the Envoy's own clothes; which the Envoy, it seems, in vanity did send to show his fine clothes upon this man's back, which is one, it seems, of a comelier presence than himself: and yet it is said that none of their clothes are their own, but taken out of the King's own Wardrobe; and which they dare not bring back dirty or spotted, but clean, or are in danger of being beaten, as they say: insomuch that, Sir Charles Cotterell (52) says, when they are to have an audience they never venture to put on their clothes till he appears to come to fetch them; and, as soon as ever they come home, put them off again.
I to Sir G. Carteret's (57) to dinner; where Mr. Cofferer (63) Ashburnham; who told a good story of a prisoner's being condemned at Salisbury for a small matter. While he was on the bench with his father-in-law, judge Richardson, and while they were considering to transport him to save his life, the fellow flung a great stone at the judge, that missed him, but broke through the wainscoat. Upon this, he had his hand cut off, and was hanged presently! Here was a gentleman, one Sheres, one come lately from my Lord Sandwich (42), with an express; but, Lord! I was almost ashamed to see him, lest he should know that I have not yet wrote one letter to my Lord since his going. I had no discourse with him, but after dinner Sir G. Carteret (57) and I to talk about some business of his, and so I to Mrs. Martin, where was Mrs. Burroughs, and also fine Mrs. Noble, my partner in the christening of Martin's child, did come to see it, and there we sat and talked an hour, and then all broke up and I by coach home, and there find Mr. Pelling and Howe, and we to sing and good musique till late, and then to supper, and Howe lay at my house, and so after supper to bed with much content, only my mind a little troubled at my late breach of vowes, which however I will pay my forfeits, though the badness of my eyes, making me unfit to read or write long, is my excuse, and do put me upon other pleasures and employment which I should refrain from in observation of my vowes.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 20 September 1667. 20 Sep 1667. At the office doing business all the morning. At noon expected Creed to have come to dine with me and brought Mr. Sheres (the gentleman lately come from my Lord Sandwich (42)) with him; but they come not, so there was a good dinner lost.
After dinner my wife and Jane about some business of hers abroad, and then I to the office, where, having done my business, I out to pay some debts: among others to the taverne at the end of Billiter Lane, where my design was to see the pretty mistress of the house, which I did, and indeed is, as I always thought, one of the modestest, prettiest, plain women that ever I saw.
Thence home, and my wife and I to walk in the garden, she having been at the same play with Jane, in the 18d. seat, to shew Jane the play, and so home to supper and to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 21 September 1667. 21 Sep 1667. All the morning at the office, dined at home, and expected Sheres again, but he did not come, so another dinner lost by the folly of Creed. After having done some business at the office, I out with my wife to Sheres's lodging and left an invitation for him to dine with me tomorrow, and so back and took up my wife at the Exchange, and then kissed Mrs. Smith's pretty hand, and so with my wife by coach to take some ayre (but the way very dirty) as far as Bow, and so drinking (as usual) at Mile End of Byde's ale, we home and there busy at my letters till late, and so to walk by moonshine with my wife, and so to bed. The King (37), Duke of York (33), and the men of the Court, have been these four or five days a-hunting at Bagshot.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 22 September 1667. 22 Sep 1667. Lord's Day. At my chamber all the morning making up some accounts, to my great content. At noon comes Mr. Sheres, whom I find a good, ingenious man, but do talk a little too much of his travels. He left my Lord Sandwich (42) well, but in pain to be at home for want of money, which comes very hardly. Most of the afternoon talking of Spain, and informing him against his return how things are here, and so spent most of the afternoon, and then he parted, and then to my chamber busy till my eyes were almost blind with writing and reading, and I was fain to get the boy to come and write for me, and then to supper, and Pelling come to me at supper, and then to sing a Psalm with him, and so parted and to bed, after my wife had read some thing to me (to save my eyes) in a good book.
This night I did even my accounts of the house, which I have to my great shame omitted now above two months or more, and therefore am content to take my wife's and mayd's accounts as they give them, being not able to correct them, which vexes me; but the fault being my own, contrary to my wife's frequent desires, I cannot find fault, but am resolved never to let them come to that pass again. The truth is, I have indulged myself more in pleasure for these last two months than ever I did in my life before, since I come to be a person concerned in business; and I doubt, when I come to make up my accounts, I shall find it so by the expence.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 27 September 1667. 27 Sep 1667. Up, and to the office, where very busy all the morning. While I was busy at the Office, my wife sends for me to come home, and what was it but to see the pretty girl which she is taking to wait upon her: and though she seems not altogether so great a beauty as she had before told me, yet indeed she is mighty pretty; and so pretty, that I find I shall be too much pleased with it, and therefore could be contented as to my judgement, though not to my passion, that she might not come, lest I may be found too much minding her, to the discontent of my wife. She is to come next week. She seems, by her discourse, to be grave beyond her bigness and age, and exceeding well bred as to her deportment, having been a scholar in a school at Bow these seven or eight years.
To the office again, my head running on this pretty girl, and there till noon, when Creed and Sheres come and dined with me; and we had a great deal of pretty discourse of the ceremoniousness of the Spaniards, whose ceremonies are so many and so known, that, Sheres tells me, upon all occasions of joy or sorrow in a Grandee's family, my Lord Embassador is fain to send one with an 'en hora buena', if it be upon a marriage, or birth of a child, or a 'pesa me', if it be upon the death of a child, or so. And these ceremonies are so set, and the words of the compliment, that he hath been sent from my Lord, when he hath done no more than send in word to the Grandee that one was there from the Embassador; and he knowing what was his errand, that hath been enough, and he never spoken with him: nay, several Grandees having been to marry a daughter, have wrote letters to my Lord to give him notice, and out of the greatness of his wisdom to desire his advice, though people he never saw; and then my Lord he answers by commending the greatness of his discretion in making so good an alliance, &c., and so ends. He says that it is so far from dishonour to a man to give private revenge for an affront, that the contrary is a disgrace; they holding that he that receives an affront is not fit to appear in the sight of the world till he hath revenged himself; and therefore, that a gentleman there that receives an affront oftentimes never appears again in the world till he hath, by some private way or other, revenged himself: and that, on this account, several have followed their enemies privately to the Indys, thence to Italy, thence to France and back again, watching for an opportunity to be revenged. He says my Lord was fain to keep a letter from the Duke of York (33) to the Queen of Spain (32) a great while in his hands, before he could think fit to deliver it, till he had learnt whether the Queen (28) would receive it, it being directed to his cozen. He says that many ladies in Spain, after they are found to be with child, do never stir out of their beds or chambers till they are brought to bed: so ceremonious they are in that point also. He tells me of their wooing by serenades at the window, and that their friends do always make the match; but yet that they have opportunities to meet at masse at church, and there they make love: that the Court there hath no dancing, nor visits at night to see the King (37) or Queen (28), but is always just like a cloyster, nobody stirring in it: that my Lord Sandwich (42) wears a beard now, turned up in the Spanish manner. But that which pleases me most indeed is, that the peace which he hath made with Spain is now printed here, and is acknowledged by all the merchants to be the best peace that ever England had with them: and it appears that the King (37) thinks it so, for this is printed before the ratification is gone over; whereas that with France and Holland was not in a good while after, till copys come over of it in English out of Holland and France, that it was a reproach not to have it printed here. This I am mighty glad of; and is the first and only piece of good news, or thing fit to be owned, that this nation hath done several years.
After dinner I to the office, and they gone, anon comes Pelling, and he and I to Gray's Inne Fields, thinking to have heard Mrs. Knight sing at her lodgings, by a friend's means of his1 but we come too late; so must try another time.
So lost our labour, and I by coach home, and there to my chamber, and did a great deal of good business about my Tangier accounts, and so with pleasure discoursing with my wife of our journey shortly to Brampton, and of this little girle, which indeed runs in my head, and pleases me mightily, though I dare not own it, and so to supper and to bed.
1. Mrs. Knight, a celebrated singer and mistress of Charles II. There is in Waller's "Poems" a song sung by her to the Queen (28) on her birthday. In her portrait, engraved by Faber, after Kneller (21), she is represented in mourning, and in a devout posture before a crucifix. Evelyn (46) refers to her singing as incomparable, and adds that she had "the greatest reach of any English woman; she had been lately roaming in Italy, and was much improv'd in that quality" ("Diary", December 2nd, 1674).
Diary of Samuel Pepys 31 December 1668. 31 Dec 1668. Up, and at the Office all the morning.
At noon Capt. Ferrers and Mr. Sheres1 come to me to dinner, who did, and pretty pleased with their talk of Spayne; but my wife did not come down, I suppose because she would not, Captain Ferrers being there, to oblige me by it. They gone, after dinner, I to the office, and then in the evening home, being the last day of the year, to endeavour to pay all bills and servants' wages, &c., which I did almost to £5 that I know that I owe in the world, but to the publique; and so with great pleasure to supper and to bed, and, blessed be God! the year ends, after some late very great sorrow with my wife by my folly, yet ends, I say, with great mutual peace and content, and likely to last so by my care, who am resolved to enjoy the sweet of it, which I now possess, by never giving her like cause of trouble. My greatest trouble is now from the backwardness of my accounts, which I have not seen the bottom of now near these two years, so that I know not in what condition I am in the world, but by the grace of God, as far as my eyes will give me leave, I will do it.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 18 January 1669. 18 Jan 1669. Up by candlelight, and with W. Hewer (27) walked to the Temple, and thence took coach and to Sir William Coventry's (41), and there discoursed the business of my Treasurer's place, at Tangier, wherein he consents to my desire, and concurs therein, which I am glad of, that I may not be accountable for a man so far off. And so I to my Lord Sandwich's (43), and there walk with him through the garden, to White Hall, where he tells me what he had done about this Treasurer's place, and I perceive the whole thing did proceed from him: that finding it would be best to have the Governor have nothing to do with the pay of the garrison, he did propose to the Duke of York (35) alone that a pay-master should be there; and that being desirous to do a courtesy to Sir Charles Harbord (29), and to prevent the Duke of York's (35) looking out for any body else, he did name him to the Duke of York (35). That when he come the other day to move this to the Board of Tangier, the Duke of York (35), it seems, did readily reply, that it was fit to have Mr. Pepys satisfied therein first, and that it was not good to make places for persons. This my Lord in great confidence tells me, that he do take very ill from the Duke of York (35), though nobody knew the meaning of these words but him; and that he did take no notice of them, but bit his lip, being satisfied that the Duke of York's (35) care of me was as desirable to him, as it could be to have Sir Charles Harbord (29): and did seem industrious to let me see that he was glad that the Duke of York (35) and he might come to contend who shall be the kindest to me, which I owned as his great love, and so I hope and believe it is, though my Lord did go a little too far in this business, to move it so far, without consulting me. But I took no notice of that, but was glad to see this competition come about, that my Lord Sandwich (43) is apparently jealous of my thinking that the Duke of York (35) do mean me more kindness than him. So we walked together, and I took this occasion to invite him to dinner one day to my house, and he readily appointed Friday next, which I shall be glad to have over to his content, he having never yet eat a bit of my bread.
Thence to the Duke of York (35) on the King's side, with our Treasurers of the Navy, to discourse some business of the Navy, about the pay of the yards, and there I was taken notice of, many Lords being there in the room, of the Duke of York's (35) conference with me; and so away, and meeting Mr. Sidney Montagu (18) and Sheres, a small invitation served their turn to carry them to London, where I paid Sheres his £100, given him for his pains in drawing the plate of Tangier fortifications, &c., and so home to my house to dinner, where I had a pretty handsome sudden dinner, and all well pleased; and thence we three and my wife to the Duke of York's playhouse, and there saw "The Witts", a medley of things, but some similes mighty good, though ill mixed; and thence with my wife to the Exchange and bought some things, and so home, after I had been at White Hall, and there in the Queen's (30) withdrawing-room invited my Lord Peterborough (47) to dine with me, with my Lord Sandwich (43), who readily accepted it.
Thence back and took up my wife at the 'Change, and so home. This day at noon I went with my young gentlemen (thereby to get a little time while W. Hewer (27) went home to bid them get a dinner ready) to the Pope's Head tavern, there to see the fine painted room which Rogerson told me of, of his doing; but I do not like it at all, though it be good for such a publick room.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 28 January 1669. 28 Jan 1669. Up, and to the office, where all the afternoon, also after dinner, and there late dispatching much business, and then home to supper with my wife, and to get her to read to me, and here I did find that Mr. Sheres hath, beyond his promise, not only got me a candlestick made me, after a form he remembers to have seen in Spain, for keeping the light from one's eyes, but hath got it done in silver very neat, and designs to give it me, in thanks for my paying him his £100 in money, for his service at Tangier, which was ordered him; but I do intend to force him to make me [pay] for it. But I yet, without his direction, cannot tell how it is to be made use of. So after a little reading to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 02 February 1669. 02 Feb 1669. Up, and to the office, where all the morning, and home to dinner at noon, where I find Mr. Sheres; and there made a short dinner, and carried him with us to the King's playhouse, where "The Heyresse", not-withstanding Kinaston's (29) being beaten, is acted; and they say the King (38) is very angry with Sir Charles Sedley for his being beaten, but he do deny it. But his part is done by Beeston, who is fain to read it out of a book all the while, and thereby spoils the part, and almost the play, it being one of the best parts in it; and though the design is, in the first conception of it, pretty good, yet it is but an indifferent play, wrote, they say, by my Lord Newcastle. But it was pleasant to see Beeston come in with others, supposing it to be dark, and yet he is forced to read his part by the light of the candles: and this I observing to a gentleman that sat by me, he was mightily pleased therewith, and spread it up and down. But that, that pleased me most in the play is, the first song that Knepp sings, she singing three or four; and, indeed, it was very finely sung, so as to make the whole house clap her.
Thence carried Sheres to White Hall, and there I stepped in, and looked out Mr. May (47), who tells me that he and his company cannot come to dine with me to-morrow, whom I expected only to come to see the manner of our Office and books, at which I was not very much displeased, having much business at the Office, and so away home, and there to the office about my letters, and then home to supper and to bed, my wife being in mighty ill humour all night, and in the morning I found it to be from her observing Knepp to wink and smile on me; and she says I smiled on her; and, poor wretch! I did perceive that she did, and do on all such occasions, mind my eyes. I did, with much difficulty, pacify her, and were friends, she desiring that hereafter, at that house, we might always sit either above in a box, or, if there be [no] room, close up to the lower boxes.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 04 February 1669. 04 Feb 1669. Up, and at the office all the morning.
At noon home with my people to dinner, and then after dinner comes Mr. Spong to see me, and brings me my Parallelogram, in better order than before, and two or three draughts of the port of Brest, to my great content, and I did call Mr. Gibson to take notice of it, who is very much pleased therewith; and it seems this Parallelogram is not, as Mr. Sheres would, the other day, have persuaded me, the same as a Protractor, which do so much the more make me value it, but of itself it is a most usefull instrument.
Thence out with my wife and him, and carried him to an instrument-maker's shop in Chancery Lane, that was once a 'Prentice of Greatorex's (44), but the master was not within, and there he [Gibson] shewed me a Parallelogram in brass, which I like so well that I will buy, and therefore bid it be made clean and fit for me. And so to my cozen Turner's, and there just spoke with The. (17), the mother not being at home; and so to the New Exchange, and thence home to my letters; and so home to supper and to bed. This morning I made a slip from the Office to White Hall, expecting Povy's (55) business at a Committee of Tangier, at which I would be, but it did not meet, and so I presently back.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 19 March 1669. 19 Mar 1669. Up, and by water to White Hall, there to the Lords of the Treasury, and did some business, and here Sir Thomas Clifford (38) did speak to me, as desirous that I would some time come and confer with him about the Navy, which I am glad of, but will take the direction of the Duke of York (35) before I do it, though I would be glad to do something to secure myself, if I could, in my employment.
Thence to the plaisterer's, and took my face, and my Duke of Albemarle's (60) home with me by coach, they being done to my mind; and mighty glad I am of understanding this way of having the pictures of any friends. At home to dinner, where Mr. Sheres dined with us, but after dinner I left him and my wife, and with Commissioner Middleton and Kempthorne (49) to a Court-martiall, to which, by virtue of my late Captainship, I am called, the first I was ever at; where many Commanders, and Kempthorne (49) president. Here was tried a difference between Sir L. Van Hemskirke, the Dutch Captain who commands "The Nonsuch", built by his direction, and his Lieutenant; a drunken kind of silly business. We ordered the Lieutenant to ask him pardon, and have resolved to lay before the Duke of York (35) what concerns the Captain, which was striking of his Lieutenant and challenging him to fight, which comes not within any article of the laws martiall. But upon discourse the other day with Sir W. Coventry (41), I did advise Middleton, and he and I did forbear to give judgment, but after the debate did withdraw into another cabin, the Court being held in one of the yachts, which was on purpose brought up over against St. Katharine's, it being to be feared that this precedent of our being made Captains, in order to the trying of the loss of "The Defyance", wherein we are the proper persons to enquire into the want of instructions while ships do lie in harbour, evil use might be hereafter made of the precedent by putting the Duke of Buckingham (41), or any of these rude fellows that now are uppermost, to make packed Courts, by Captains made on purpose to serve their turns. The other cause was of the loss of "The Providence" at Tangier, where the Captain's being by chance on shore may prove very inconvenient to him, for example's sake, though the man be a good man, and one whom, for Norwood's sake, I would be kind to; but I will not offer any thing to the excusing such a miscarriage. He is at present confined, till he can bring better proofs on his behalf of the reasons of his being on shore. So Middleton and I away to the Office; and there I late busy, making my people, as I have done lately, to read Mr. Holland's' Discourse of the Navy, and what other things I can get to inform me fully in all; and here late, about eight at night, comes Mr. Wren (40) to me, who had been at the Tower to Coventry. He come only to see how matters go, and tells me, as a secret, that last night the Duke of York's (35) closet was broken open, and his cabinets, and shut again, one of them that the rogue that did it hath left plate and a watch behind him, and therefore they fear that it was only for papers, which looks like a very malicious business in design, to hurt the Duke of York (35); but they cannot know that till the Duke of York (35) comes to town about the papers, and therefore make no words of it. He gone, I to work again, and then to supper at home, and to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 05 April 1669. 05 Apr 1669. Up, and by coach, it being very cold, to White Hall, expecting a meeting of Tangier, but it did not. But, however, did wait there all the morning, and, among other things, I spent a little time with Creed walking in the garden, and talking about our Office, and Child's coming in to be a Commissioner; and, being his friend, I did think he might do me a kindness to learn of him what the Duke of Buckingham (41) and the faction do design touching me, and to instil good words concerning me, which he says, and I believe he will: and it is but necessary; for I have not a mind indeed at this time to be put out of my Office, if I can make any shift that is honourable to keep it; but I will not do it by deserting the Duke of York (35).
At noon by appointment comes Mr. Sheres, and he and I to Unthanke's, where my wife stays for us in our coach, and Betty Turner (16) with her; and we to the Mulberry Garden, where Sheres is to treat us with a Spanish Olio1, by a cook of his acquaintance that is there, that was with my Lord in Spain: and without any other company, he did do it, and mighty nobly; and the Olio was indeed a very noble dish, such as I never saw better, or any more of. This, and the discourse he did give us of Spain, and description of the Escuriall, was a fine treat. So we left other good things, that would keep till night, for a collation; and, with much content, took coach again, and went five or six miles towards Branford, the Prince of Tuscany (26), who comes into England only to spend money and see our country, comes into the town to-day, and is much expected; and we met him, but the coach passing by apace, we could not see much of him but he seems a very jolly and good comely man. By the way, we overtook Captain Ferrers upon his fine Spanish horse, and he is a fine horse indeed; but not so good, I think, as I have seen some. He did ride by us most of the way, and with us to the Park, and there left us, where we passed the evening, and meeting The. Turner (17), Talbot, W. Batelier, and his sister, in a coach, we anon took them with us to the Mulberry Garden; and there, after a walk, to supper upon what was left at noon; and very good; only Mr. Sheres being taken suddenly ill for a while, did spoil our mirth; but by and by was well again, and we mighty merry: and so broke up, and left him at Charing Cross, and so calling only at my cozen Turner's, away home, mightily pleased with the day's work, and this day come another new mayd, for a middle mayd, but her name I know not yet; and, for a cookmaid, we have, ever since Bridget went, used a blackmoore of Mr. Batelier's, Doll, who dresses our meat mighty well, and we mightily pleased with her. So by and by to bed.
1. An olio is a mixed dish of meat and vegetables, and, secondarily, mixture or medley.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 12 April 1669. 12 Apr 1669. Up, and by water to White Hall, where I of the whole Office attended the Duke of York (35) at his meeting with Sir Thomas Allen (36) and several flag-officers, to consider of the manner of managing the war with Algiers; and, it being a thing I was wholly silent in, I did only observe; and find that; their manner of discourse on this weighty affair was very mean and disorderly, the Duke of York (35) himself being the man that I thought spoke most to the purpose. Having done here, I up and down the house, talking with this man and that, and: then meeting Mr. Sheres, took him to see the fine flower-pot I saw yesterday, and did again offer £20 for it; but he [Verelst] insists upon £50.
Thence I took him to St. James's, but there was no musique, but so walked to White Hall, and, by and by to my wife at Unthanke's, and with her was Jane, and so to the Cocke (52), where they, and I, and Sheres, and Tom dined, my wife having a great desire to eat of their soup made of pease, and dined very well, and thence by water to the Bear-Garden, and there happened to sit by Sir Fretcheville Hollis (26), who is still full of his vain-glorious and prophane talk. Here we saw a prize fought between a soldier and country fellow, one Warrell, who promised the least in his looks, and performed the most of valour in his boldness and evenness of mind, and smiles in all he did, that ever I saw and we were all both deceived and infinitely taken with him. He did soundly beat the soldier, and cut him over the head.
Thence back to White Hall, mightily pleased, all of us, with this sight, and particularly this fellow, as a most extraordinary man for his temper and evenness in fighting. And there leaving Sheres, we by our own coach home, and after sitting an hour, thrumming upon my viall, and singing, I to bed, and left my wife to do something to a waistcoat and petticoat she is to wear to-morrow. This evening, coming home, we overtook Alderman Backewell's (51) coach and his lady, and followed them to their house, and there made them the first visit, where they received us with extraordinary civility, and owning the obligation. But I do, contrary to my expectation, find her something a proud and vain-glorious woman, in telling the number of her servants and family and expences: he is also so, but he was ever of that strain. But here he showed me the model of his houses that he is going to build in Cornhill and Lumbard Street; but he hath purchased so much there, that it looks like a little town, and must have cost him a great deal of money.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 23 April 1669. 23 Apr 1669. Going to rise, without saying anything, my wife stopped me; and, after a little angry talk, did tell me how she spent all day yesterday with M. Batelier and her sweetheart, and seeing a play at the New Nursery, which is set up at the house in Lincoln's Inn Fields, which was formerly the King's house. So that I was mightily pleased again, and rose a with great content; and so by water to White Hall, and there to the Council-Chamber, and heard two or three causes: among others, that of the complaint of Sir Philip Howard (38) and Watson, the inventors, as they pretend, of the business of varnishing and lackerworke, against the Company of Painters, who take upon them to do the same thing; where I saw a great instance of the weakness of a young Counsel not used to such an audience, against the Solicitor-General and two more able Counsel used to it. Though he had the right of, his side, and did prevail for what he pretended to against the rest, yet it was with much disadvantage and hazard. Here, also I heard Mr. Papillion (45) make his defence to the King (38), against some complaints of the Farmers of Excise; but it was so weak, and done only by his own seeking, that it was to his injury more than profit, and made his case the worse, being ill managed, and in a cause against the King (38).
Thence at noon, the Council rising, I to Unthanke's, and there by agreement met my wife, and with her to the Cocke (52), and did give her a dinner, but yet both of us but in an ill humour, whatever was the matter with her, but thence to the King's playhouse, and saw "The Generous Portugalls", a play that pleases me better and better every time we see it; and, I thank God! it did not trouble my eyes so much as I was afeard it would. Here, by accident, we met Mr. Sheres, and yet I could not but be troubled, because my wife do so delight to talk of him, and to see him. Nevertheless, we took him with us to our mercer's, and to the Exchange, and he helped me to choose a summer-suit of coloured camelott, coat and breeches, and a flowered tabby vest very rich; and so home, where he took his leave, and down to Greenwich, where he hath some friends; and I to see Colonel Middleton, who hath been ill for a day or two, or three; and so home to supper, and to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 24 April 1669. 24 Apr 1669. Up, and to the office, where all the morning, and at noon home to dinner, Mr. Sheres dining with us by agreement; and my wife, which troubled me, mighty careful to have a handsome dinner for him; but yet I see no reason to be troubled at it, he being a very civil and worthy man, I think; but only it do seem to imply some little neglect of me.
After dinner to the King's house, and there saw "The General" revived-a good play, that pleases me well, and thence, our coach coming for us, we parted and home, and I busy late at the office, and then home to supper and to bed. Well pleased to-night to have Lead, the vizard-maker, bring me home my vizard, with a tube fastened in it, which, I think, will do my business, at least in a great measure, for the easing of my eyes.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 26 April 1669. 26 Apr 1669. Up, having lain long, and then by coach with W. Hewer (27) to the Excise Office, and so to Lilly's (50), the Varnishes; who is lately dead, and his wife and brother keep up the trade, and there I left my French prints to be put on boards:, and, while I was there, a fire burst out in a chimney of a house over against his house, but it was with a gun quickly put out.
So to White Hall, and did a little business there at the Treasury chamber, and so homeward, calling at the laceman's for some lace for my new suit, and at my tailor's, and so home, where to dinner, and Mr. Sheres dined, with us, who come hither to-day to teach my wife the rules of perspective; but I think, upon trial, he thinks it too hard to teach her, being ignorant of the principles of lines.
After dinner comes one Colonel Macnachan, one that I see often at Court, a Scotchman, but know him not; only he brings me a letter from my Lord_Middleton (61), who, he says, is in great distress for £500 to relieve my Lord Morton with, but upon, what account I know not; and he would have me advance it without order upon his pay for Tangier, which I was astonished at, but had the grace to deny him with an excuse. And so he went away, leaving me a little troubled that I was thus driven, on a sudden, to do any thing herein; but Creed, coming just now to see me, he approves of what I have done. And then to talk of general matters, and, by and by, Sheres being gone, my wife, and he, and I out, and I set him down at Temple Bar, and myself and wife went down the Temple upon seeming business, only to put him off, and just at the Temple gate I spied Deb. with another gentlewoman, and Deb. winked on me and smiled, but undiscovered, and I was glad to see her. So my wife and I to the 'Change, about things for her; and here, at Mrs. Burnett's shop, I am told by Betty, who was all undressed, of a great fire happened in Durham-Yard last night, burning the house of one Lady Hungerford, who was to come to town to it this night; and so the house is burned, new furnished, by carelessness of the girl sent to take off a candle from a bunch of candles, which she did by burning it off, and left the rest, as is supposed, on fire. The King (38) and Court were here, it seems, and stopped the fire by blowing up of the next house. The King (38) and Court went out of town to Newmarket this morning betimes, for a week.
So home, and there to my chamber, and got my wife to read to me a little, and so to supper and to bed. Coming home this night I did call at the coachmaker's, and do resolve upon having the standards of my coach gilt with this new sort of varnish, which will come but to 40s.; and, contrary to my expectation, the doing of the biggest coach all over comes not to above £6, which is [not] very much.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 28 April 1669. 28 Apr 1669. Up, and was called upon by Sir H. Cholmly (36) to discourse about some accounts of his, of Tangier: and then other talk; and I find by him that it is brought almost effect ([through] the late endeavours of the Duke of York (35) and Duchess (32), the Queen-Mother (59), and my Lord St. Albans (64), together with some of the contrary faction, my Lord Arlington (51)), that for a sum of money we shall enter into a league with the King of France (30), wherein, he says, my Chancellor (60)1 is also concerned; and that he believes that, in the doing hereof, it is meant that he [Clarendon] shall come again, and that this sum of money will so help the King (38) that he will not need the Parliament; and that, in that regard it will be forwarded by the Duke of Buckingham (41) and his faction, who dread the Parliament. But hereby we must leave the Dutch, and that I doubt will undo us; and Sir H. Cholmly (36) says he finds W. Coventry (41) do think the like. Baroness Castlemayne (28) is instrumental in this matter, and, he say never more great with the King (38) than she is now. But this a thing that will make the Parliament and kingdom mad, and will turn to our ruine: for with this money the King (38) shall wanton away his time in pleasures, and think nothing of the main till it be too late. He gone, I to the office, where busy till noon, and then home to dinner, where W. Batelier dined with us, and pretty merry, and so I to the office again. This morning Mr. Sheres sent me, in two volumes, Mariana his History of Spaine, in Spanish, an excellent book; and I am much obliged for it to him.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 30 April 1669. 30 Apr 1669. Up, and by coach to the coachmaker's: and there I do find a great many ladies sitting in the body of a coach that must be ended by to-morrow: they were my Lady Marquess of Winchester, Bellassis, and other great ladies; eating of bread and butter, and drinking ale. I to my coach, which is silvered over, but no varnish yet laid on, so I put it in a way of doing; and myself about other business, and particularly to see Sir W. Coventry (41), with whom I talked a good while to my great content; and so to other places-among others, to my tailor's: and then to the belt-maker's, where my belt cost me 55s., of the colour of my new suit; and here, understanding that the mistress of the house, an oldish woman in a hat hath some water good for the eyes, she did dress me, making my eyes smart most horribly, and did give me a little glass of it, which I will use, and hope it will do me good.
So to the Mr. Cutler's, and there did give Tom, who was with me all day a sword cost me 12s. and a belt of my owne; and set my own silver-hilt sword a-gilding against to-morrow. This morning I did visit Mr. Oldenburgh, and did see the instrument for perspective made by Dr. Wren (45), of which I have one making by Browne; and the sight of this do please me mightily.
At noon my wife come to me at my tailor's, and I sent her home and myself and Tom dined at Hercules' Pillars; and so about our business again, and particularly to Lilly's (50), the varnisher about my prints, whereof some of them are pasted upon the boards, and to my full content.
Thence to the frame-maker's one Morris, in Long Acre, who shewed me several forms of frames to choose by, which was pretty, in little bits of mouldings, to choose by. This done, I to my coach-maker's, and there vexed to see nothing yet done to my coach, at three in the afternoon; but I set it in doing, and stood by it till eight at night, and saw the painter varnish which is pretty to see how every doing it over do make it more and more yellow; and it dries as fast in the sun as it can be laid on almost; and most coaches are, now-a-days done so, and it is very pretty when laid on well, and not pale, as some are, even to shew the silver. Here I did make the workmen drink, and saw my coach cleaned and oyled; and, staying among poor people there in the alley, did hear them call their fat child Punch, which pleased me mightily that word being become a word of common use for all that is thick and short. At night home, and there find my wife hath been making herself clean against to-morrow; and, late as it was, I did send my coachman and horses to fetch home the coach to-night, and so we to supper, myself most weary with walking and standing so much, to see all things fine against to-morrow, and so to bed. God give a blessing to it! Meeting with Mr. Sheres, he went with me up and down to several places, and, among others, to buy a perriwig, but I bought none; and also to Dancre's (44), where he was about my picture of Windsor, which is mighty pretty, and so will the prospect of Rome be.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 01 May 1669. 01 May 1669. Up betimes. Called up by my tailor, and there first put on a summer suit this year; but it was not my fine one of flowered tabby vest, and coloured camelott tunique, because it was too fine with the gold lace at the hands, that I was afeard to be seen in it; but put on the stuff suit I made the last year, which is now repaired; and so did go to the Office in it, and sat all the morning, the day looking as if it would be fowle.
At noon home to dinner, and there find my wife extraordinary fine, with her flowered tabby gown that she made two years ago, now laced exceeding pretty; and, indeed, was fine all over; and mighty earnest to go, though the day was very lowering; and she would have me put on my fine suit, which I did. And so anon we went alone through the town with our new liveries of serge, and the horses' manes and tails tied with red ribbons, and the standards there gilt with varnish, and all clean, and green refines, that people did mightily look upon us; and, the truth is, I did not see any coach more pretty, though more gay, than ours, all the day. But we set out, out of humour-I because Betty, whom I expected, was not come to go with us; and my wife that I would sit on the same seat with her, which she likes not, being so fine: and she then expected to meet Sheres, which we did in the Pell Mell, and, against my will, I was forced to take him into the coach, but was sullen all day almost, and little complaisant: the day also being unpleasing, though the Park full of coaches, but dusty and windy, and cold, and now and then a little dribbling rain; and, what made it worst, there were so many Hackney-coaches as spoiled the sight of the gentlemen's; and so we had little pleasure. But here was W. Batelier and his sister in a borrowed coach by themselves, and I took them and we to the lodge; and at the door did give them a syllabub, and other things, cost me 12s., and pretty merry. And so back to the coaches, and there till the evening, and then home, leaving Mr. Sheres at St. James's Gate, where he took leave of us for altogether, he; being this night to set out for Portsmouth post, in his way to Tangier, which troubled my wife mightily, who is mighty, though not, I think, too fond of him. But she was out of humour all the evening, and I vexed at her for it, and she did not rest almost all the night, so as in the night I was forced; to take her and hug her to put her to rest.
So home, and after a little supper, to bed.
Diary of Samuel Pepys 05 May 1669. 05 May 1669. Up, and thought to have gone with Lord Brouncker (49) to Mr. Hooke (33) this morning betimes; but my Lord is taken ill of the gout, and says his new lodgings have infected him, he never having had any symptoms of it till now. So walked to Gresham College, to tell Hooke that my Lord could not come; and so left word, he being abroad, and I to St. James's, and thence, with the Duke of York (35), to White Hall, where the Board waited on him all the morning: and so at noon with Sir Thomas Allen (36), and Sir Edward Scott, and Lord Carlingford (66), to the Spanish Embassador's, where I dined the first time. The Olio not so good as Sheres's. There was at the table himself and a Spanish Countess, a good, comely, and witty lady-three Fathers and us. Discourse good and pleasant. And here was an Oxford scholar in a Doctor of Law's gowne, sent from the College where the Embassador lay, when the Court was there, to salute him before his return to Spain: This man, though a gentle sort of scholar, yet sat like a fool for want of French or Spanish, but [knew] only Latin, which he spoke like an Englishman to one of the Fathers. And by and by he and I to talk, and the company very merry at my defending Cambridge against Oxford: and I made much use of my French and Spanish here, to my great content. But the dinner not extraordinary at all, either for quantity or quality.
Thence home, where my wife ill of those upon the maid's bed, and troubled at my being abroad. So I to the office, and there till night, and then to her, and she read to me the Epistle of Cassandra, which is very good indeed; and the better to her, because recommended by Sheres.
So to supper, and to bed.
In 1710 Henry Sheeres Engineer -1710 died.
Henry Sheeres Engineer -1710 was born to [his father] Henry Sheeres of Deptford.