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Friday, 20th April 1660

20th. All the morning I was busy to get my window altered, and to have my table set as I would have it, which after it was done I was infinitely pleased with it, and also to see what a command I have to have every one ready to come and go at my command. This evening came Mr. Boyle on board, for whom I writ an order for a ship to transport him to Flushing. He supped with my Lord, my Lord using him as a person of honour. This evening too came Mr. John Pickering on board us. This evening my head ached exceedingly, which I impute to my sitting backwards in my cabin, otherwise than I am used to do. To-night Mr. Sheply told me that he heard for certain at Dover that Mr. Edw. Montagu did go beyond sea when he was here first the other day, and I am apt to believe that he went to speak with the King. This day one told me how that at the election at Cambridge for knights of the shire, Wendby and Thornton by declaring to stand for the Parliament and a King and the settlement of the Church, did carry it against all expectation against Sir Dudley North and Sir Thomas Willis! I supped to-night with Mr. Sheply below at the half-deck table, and after that I saw Mr. Pickering whom my Lord brought down to his cabin, and so to bed.

Saturday, 20th April 1661

20th. Here comes my boy to tell me that the Duke of York had sent for all the principal officers, &c., to come to him to-day. So I went by water to Mr. Coventry's, and there staid and talked a good while with him till all the rest come. We went up and saw the Duke dress himself, and in his night habitt he is a very plain man. Then he sent us to his closett, where we saw among other things two very fine chests, covered with gold and Indian varnish, given him by the East Indy Company of Holland. The Duke comes; and after he had told us that the fleet was designed for Algier (which was kept from us till now), we did advise about many things as to the fitting of the fleet, and so went away. And from thence to the Privy Seal, where little to do, and after that took Mr. Creed and Moore and gave them their morning draught, and after that to my Lord's, where Sir W. Pen came to me, and dined with my Lord. After dinner he and others that dined there went away, and then my Lord looked upon his pages' and footmen's liverys, which are come home to-day, and will be handsome, though not gaudy. Then with my Lady and my Lady Wright to White Hall; and in the Banqueting-house saw the King create my Lord Chancellor and several others, Earls, and Mr. Crew and several others, Barons: the first being led up by Heralds and five old Earls to the King, and there the patent is read, and the King puts on his vest, and sword, and coronet, and gives him the patent. And then he kisseth the King's hand, and rises and stands covered before the king. And the same for the Barons, only he is led up but by three of the old Barons, and are girt with swords before they go to the King. That being done (which was very pleasant to see their habits), I carried my Lady back, and I found my Lord angry, for that his page had let my Lord's new beaver be changed for an old hat; then I went away, and with Mr. Creed to the Exchange and bought some things, as gloves and bandstrings, &c. So back to the Cockpitt, and there, by the favour of one Mr. Bowman, he and I got in, and there saw the King and Duke of York and his Duchess (which is a plain woman, and like her mother, my Lady Chancellor). And so saw "The Humersome Lieutenant" acted before the King, but not very well done.

But my pleasure was great to see the manner of it, and so many great beauties, but above all Mrs. Palmer, with whom the King do discover a great deal of familiarity. So Mr. Creed and I (the play being done) went to Mrs. Harper's, and there sat and drank, it being about twelve at night. The ways being now so dirty, and stopped up with the rayles which are this day set up in the streets, I would not go home, but went with him to his lodging at Mr. Ware's, and there lay all night.

Sunday, 20th April 1662

20th (Lord's day). My intention being to go this morning to White Hall to hear South, my Lord Chancellor's chaplain, the famous preacher and oratour of Oxford, (who the last Lord's day did sink down in the pulpit before the King, and could not proceed,) it did rain, and the wind against me, that I could by no means get a boat or coach to carry me; and so I staid at Paul's, where the judges did all meet, and heard a sermon, it being the first Sunday of the term; but they had a very poor sermon. So to my Lady's and dined, and so to White Hall to Sir G. Carteret, and so to the Chappell, where I challenged my pew as Clerk of the Privy Seal and had it, and then walked home with Mr. Blagrave to his old house in the Fishyard, and there he had a pretty kinswoman that sings, and we did sing some holy things, and afterwards others came in and so I left them, and by water through the bridge (which did trouble me) home, and so to bed.

Monday, 20th April 1663

20th. Up betimes as I use to do, and in my chamber begun to look over my father's accounts, which he brought out of the country with him by my desire, whereby I may see what he has received and spent, and I find that he is not anything extravagant, and yet it do so far outdo his estate that he must either think of lessening his charge, or I must be forced to spare money out of my purse to help him through, which I would willing do as far as £20 goes. So to my office the remaining part of the morning till towards noon, and then to Mr. Grant's. There saw his prints, which he shewed me, and indeed are the best collection of any things almost that ever I saw, there being the prints of most of the greatest houses, churches, and antiquitys in Italy and France and brave cutts. I had not time to look them over as I ought, and which I will take time hereafter to do, and therefore left them and home to dinner. After dinner, it raining very hard, by coach to Whitehall, where, after Sir G. Carteret, Sir J. Minnes, Mr. Coventry and I had been with the Duke, we to the Committee of Tangier and did matters there dispatching wholly my Lord Teviott, and so broke up. With Sir G. Carteret and Sir John Minnes by coach to my Lord Treasurer's, thinking to have spoken about getting money for paying the Yards; but we found him with some ladies at cards: and so, it being a bad time to speak, we parted, and Sir J. Minnes and I home, and after walking with my wife in the garden late, to supper and to bed, being somewhat troubled at Ashwell's desiring and insisting over eagerly upon her going to a ball to meet some of her old companions at a dancing school here in town next Friday, but I am resolved she shall not go. So to bed. This day the little Duke of Monmouth was marryed at White Hall, in the King's chamber; and tonight is a great supper and dancing at his lodgings, near Charing-Cross. I observed his coat at the tail of his coach he gives the arms of England, Scotland, and France, quartered upon some other fields, but what it is that speaks his being a bastard I know not.

Wednesday, 20th April 1664

20th. Up and by coach to Westminster, and there solicited W. Joyce's business all the morning, and meeting in the Hall with Mr. Coventry, he told me how the Committee for Trade have received now all the complaints of the merchants against the Dutch, and were resolved to report very highly the wrongs they have done us (when, God knows! it is only our owne negligence and laziness that hath done us the wrong) and this to be made to the House to-morrow. I went also out of the Hall with Mrs. Lane to the Swan at Mrs. Herbert's in the Palace Yard to try a couple of bands, and did (though I had a mind to be playing the fool with her) purposely stay but a little while, and kept the door open, and called the master and mistress of the house one after another to drink and talk with me, and showed them both my old and new bands. So that as I did nothing so they are able to bear witness that I had no opportunity there to do anything. Thence by coach with Sir W. Pen home, calling at the Temple for Lawes's Psalms, which I did not so much (by being against my oath) buy as only lay down money till others be bound better for me, and by that time I hope to get money of the Treasurer of the Navy by bills, which, according to my oath, shall make me able to do it. At home dined, and all the afternoon at a Committee of the Chest, and at night comes my aunt and uncle Wight and Nan Ferrers and supped merrily with me, my uncle coming in an hour after them almost foxed. Great pleasure by discourse with them, and so, they gone, late to bed.

Thursday, 20th April 1665

20th. Up, and all the morning busy at the office. At noon dined, and Mr. Povy by agreement with me (where his boldness with Mercer, poor innocent wench, did make both her and me blush, to think how he were able to debauch a poor girl if he had opportunity) at a dish or two of plain meat of his own choice. After dinner comes Creed and then Andrews, where want of money to Andrews the main discourse, and at last in confidence of Creed's judgement I am resolved to spare him 4 or £500 of what lies by me upon the security of some Tallys. This went against my heart to begin, but when obtaining Mr. Creed to joyne with me we do resolve to assist Mr. Andrews. Then anon we parted, and I to my office, where late, and then home to supper and to bed. This night I am told the first play is played in White Hall noon-hall, which is now turned to a house of playing. I had a great mind, but could not go to see it.

Friday, 20th April 1666

20th. Up, and after an houre or two's talke with my poor wife, who gives me more and more content every day than other, I abroad by coach to Westminster, and there met with Mrs. Martin, and she and I over the water to Stangold, and after a walke in the fields to the King's Head, and there spent an houre or two with pleasure with her, and eat a tansy and so parted, and I to the New Exchange, there to get a list of all the modern plays which I intend to collect and to have them bound up together. Thence to Mr. Hales's, and there, though against his particular mind, I had my landskipp done out, and only a heaven made in the roome of it, which though it do not please me thoroughly now it is done, yet it will do better than as it was before. Thence to Paul's Churchyarde, and there bespoke some new books, and so to my ruling woman's and there did see my work a doing, and so home and to my office a little, but was hindered of business I intended by being sent for to Mrs. Turner, who desired some discourse with me and lay her condition before me, which is bad and poor. Sir Thomas Harvey intends again to have lodgings in her house, which she prays me to prevent if I can, which I promised. Thence to talke generally of our neighbours. I find she tells me the faults of all of them, and their bad words of me and my wife, and indeed do discover more than I thought. So I told her, and so will practise that I will have nothing to do with any of them. She ended all with a promise of shells to my wife, very fine ones indeed, and seems to have great respect and honour for my wife. So home and to bed.

Saturday, 20th April 1667

20th. Up, with much pain in my eare and palate. To the office out of humour all the morning. At noon dined, and with my wife to the King's house, but there found the bill torn down and no play acted, and so being in the humour to see one, went to the Duke of York's house, and there saw "The Witts" again, which likes me better than it did the other day, having much wit in it. Here met with Mr. Rolt, who tells me the reason of no play to-day at the King's house. That Lacy had been committed to the porter's lodge for his acting his part in the late new play, and that being thence released he come to the King's house, there met with Ned Howard, the poet of the play, who congratulated his release; upon which Lacy cursed him as that it was the fault of his nonsensical play that was the cause of his ill usage. Mr. Howard did give him some reply; to which Lacy    answered
him, that he was more a fool than a poet; upon which Howard did give him a blow on the face with his glove; on which Lacy, having a cane in his hand, did give him a blow over the pate. Here Rolt and others that discoursed of it in the pit this afternoon did wonder that Howard did not run him through, he being too mean a fellow to fight with. But Howard did not do any thing but complain to the King of it; so the whole house is silenced, and the gentry seem to rejoice much at it, the house being become too insolent. Here were many fine ladies this afternoon at this house as I have at any time seen, and so after the play home and there wrote to my father, and then to walk in the garden with my wife, resolving by the grace of God to see no more plays till Whitsuntide, I having now seen a play every day this week till I have neglected my business, and that I am ashamed of, being found so much absent; the Duke of York and Sir W. Coventry having been out of town at Portsmouth did the more embolden me thereto. So home, and having brought home with me from Fenchurch Street a hundred of sparrowgrass,--    A form once so commonly used for asparagus that it has found its way into dictionaries.
--cost 18d. We had them and a little bit of salmon, which my wife had a mind to, cost 3s. So to supper, and my pain being somewhat better in my throat, we to bed.

Monday, 20th April 1668

20th. Up betimes and to the getting ready my answer to the Committee of Accounts to several questions, which makes me trouble, though I know of no blame due to me from any, let them enquire what they can out.    The first part of the entry for April 20th is among the rough notes, and stands as follows: "Monday 20. Up and busy about answer to Committee of Accounts this morning about several questions which vexed me though in none I have reason to be troubled. But the business of The Flying Greyhound begins to find me some care, though in that I am wholly void of blame." This may be compared with the text.

I to White Hall, and there hear how Henry Brouncker is fled, which, I think, will undo him: but what good it will do Harman I know not, he hath so befooled himself; but it will be good sport to my Lord Chancellor to hear how his great enemy is fain to take the same course that he is. There met Robinson, who tells me that he fears his master, W. Coventry, will this week have his business brought upon the stage again, about selling of places, which I shall be sorry for, though the less, since I hear his standing for Pen the other day, to the prejudice, though not to the wrong, of my Lord Sandwich; and yet I do think what he did, he did out of a principle of honesty. Thence to Committee of Accounts, and delivered my paper, and had little discourse, and was unwilling to stay long with them to enter into much, but away and glad to be from them, though very civil to me, but cunning and close I see they are. So to Westminster Hall, and there find the Parliament upon the Irish business, where going into the Speaker's chamber I did hear how plainly one lawyer of counsel for the complainants did inveigh by name against all the late Commissioners there. Thence with Creed, thinking, but failed, of dining with Lord Crew, and so he and I to Hercules Pillars, and there dined, and thence home by coach, and so with Jack Fenn to the Chamberlain of London to look after the state of some Navy assignments that are in his hands, and thence away, and meeting Sir William Hooker, the Alderman, he did cry out mighty high against Sir W. Pen for his getting such an estate, and giving £15,000 with his daughter, which is more, by half, than ever he did give; but this the world believes, and so let them. Thence took coach and I all alone to Hyde Park (passing through Duck Lane among the booksellers, only to get a sight of the pretty little woman I did salute the other night, and did in passing), and so all the evening in the Park, being a little unwilling to be seen there, and at night home, and thereto W. Pen's and sat and talked there with his wife and children a good while, he being busy in his closet, I believe preparing his defence in Parliament, and so home to bed.

Tuesday, 20th April 1669

20th. Up; and to the Office, and my wife abroad with Mary Batelier, with our own coach, but borrowed Sir J Minnes's coachman, that so our own might stay at home, to attend at dinner; our family being mightily disordered by our little boy's falling sick the last night; and we fear it will prove the small-pox. At noon comes my guest, Mr. Hugh May, and with him Sir Henry Capell, my old Lord Capel's son, and Mr. Parker; and I had a pretty dinner for them; and both before and after dinner had excellent discourse; and shewed them my closet and my Office, and the method of it to their great content; and more extraordinary, manly discourse and opportunity of shewing myself, and learning from others, I have not, in ordinary discourse, had in my life, they being all persons of worth, but especially Sir H. Capell, whose being a Parliament-man, and hearing my discourse in the Parliament-house, hath, as May tells me, given him along desire to know and discourse with me. In the afternoon we walked to the Old Artillery-Ground' near the Spitalfields, where I never was before, but now, by Captain Deane's invitation, did go to see his new gun tryed, this being the place where the Officers of the Ordnance do try all their great guns; and when we come, did find that the trial had been made; and they going away with extraordinary report of the proof of his gun, which, from the shortness and bigness, they do call Punchinello. But I desired Colonel Legg to stay and give us a sight of her performance, which he did, and there, in short, against a gun more than as long and as heavy again, and charged with as much powder again, she carried the same bullet as strong to the mark, and nearer and above the mark at a point blank than theirs, and is more easily managed, and recoyles no more than that, which is a thing so extraordinary as to be admired for the happiness of his invention, and to the great regret of the old Gunners and Officers of the Ordnance that were there, only Colonel Legg did do her much right in his report of her. And so, having seen this great and first experiment, we all parted, I seeing my guests into a hackney coach, and myself, with Captain Deane, taking a hackney coach, did go out towards Bow, and went as far as Stratford, and all the way talking of this invention, and he offering me a third of the profit of the invention; which, for aught I know, or do at present think, may prove matter considerable to us: for either the King will give him a reward for it, if he keeps it to himself, or he will give us a patent to make our profit of it: and no doubt but it will be of profit to merchantmen and others, to have guns of the same force at half the charge. This was our talk: and then to talk of other things, of the Navy in general: and, among other things, he did tell me that he do hear how the Duke of Buckingham hath a spite at me, which I knew before, but value it not: and he tells me that Sir T. Allen is not my friend; but for all this I am not much troubled, for I know myself so usefull that, as I believe, they will not part with me; so I thank God my condition is such that I can; retire, and be able to live with comfort, though not with abundance. Thus we spent the evening with extraordinary good discourse, to my great content, and so home to the Office, and there did some business, and then home, where my wife do come home, and I vexed at her staying out so late, but she tells me that she hath been at home with M. Batelier a good while, so I made nothing of it, but to supper and to bed.