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23rd. This morning Mr. Barlow comes to me, and he and I went forth to a scrivener in Fenchurch Street, whom we found sick of the gout in bed, and signed and sealed our agreement before him. He urged to have these words (in consideration whereof) to be interlined, which I granted, though against my will. Met this morning at the office, and afterwards Mr. Barlow by appointment came and dined with me, and both of us very pleasant and pleased. After dinner to my Lord, who took me to Secretary Nicholas, and there before him and Secretary Morris, my Lord and I upon our knees together took our oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy; and the Oath of the Privy Seal, of which I was much glad, though I am not likely to get anything by it at present; but I do desire it, for fear of a turn-out of our office. That done and my Lord gone from me, I went with Mr. Cooling and his brother, and Sam Hartlibb, little Jennings and some others to the King's Head Tavern at Charing Cross, where after drinking I took boat and so home, where we supped merrily among ourselves (our little boy proving a droll) and so after prayers to bed. This day my Lord had heard that Mr. Barnwell was dead, but it is not so yet, though he be very ill. I was troubled all this day with Mr. Cooke, being willing to do him good, but my mind is so taken up with my own business that I cannot.
23rd. Put on my mourning. Made visits to Sir W. Pen and Batten. Then to Westminster, and at the Hall staid talking with Mrs. Michell a good while, and in the afternoon, finding myself unfit for business, I went to the Theatre, and saw "Brenoralt," I never saw before. It seemed a good play, but ill acted; only I sat before Mrs. Palmer, the King's mistress, and filled my eyes with her, which much pleased me. Then to my father's, where by my desire I met my uncle Thomas, and discoursed of my uncle's will to him, and did satisfyhim
as well as I could. So to my uncle Wight's, but found him out of doors, but my aunt I saw and staid a while, and so home and to bed. Troubled to hear how proud and idle Pall is grown, that I am resolved not to keep her.
23rd. This morning angry a little in the morning, and my house being so much out of order makes me a little pettish. I went to the office, and there dispatched business by myself, and so again in the afternoon; being a little vexed that my brother Tom, by his neglect, do fail to get a coach for my wife and maid this week, by which she will not be at Brampton Feast, to meet my Lady at my father's. At night home, and late packing up things in order to their going to Brampton to-morrow, and so to bed, quite out of sorts in my mind by reason that the weather is so bad, and my house all full of wet, and the trouble of going from one house to another to Sir W. Pen's upon every occasion. Besides much disturbed by reason of the talk up and down the town, that my Lord Sandwich is lost; but I trust in God the contrary.
23rd. Up and to my office, and thence by information from, Mr. Ackworth I went down to Woolwich, and mustered the three East India ships that lie there, believing that there is great-juggling between the Pursers and Clerks of the Cheque in cheating the King of the wages and victuals of men that do not give attendance, and I found very few on board. So to the yard, and there mustered the yard, and found many faults, and discharged several fellows that were absent from their business. I staid also at Mr. Ackworth's desire at dinner with him and his wife, and there was a simple fellow, a gentleman I believe of the Court, their kinsmen, that threatened me I could have little discourse or begin, acquaintance with Ackworth's wife, and so after dinner away, with all haste home, and there found Sir J. Minnes and Sir W. Batten at the office, and by Sir W. Batten's testimony and Sir G. Carteret's concurrence was forced to consent to a business of Captain Cocke's timber, as bad as anything we have lately disputed about, and all through Mr. Coventry's not being with us. So up and to supper with Sir W. Batten upon a soused mullett, very good meat, and so home and to bed.
23rd. Up, and all the morning at the office. At noon to the 'Change, where I took occasion to break the business of my Lord Chancellor's timber to Mr. Coventry in the best manner I could. He professed to me, that, till, Sir G. Carteret did speake of it at the table, after our officers were gone to survey it, he did not know that my Lord Chancellor had any thing to do with it; but now he says that he had been told by the Duke that Sir G. Carteret had spoke to him about it, and that he had told the Duke that, were he in my Lord Chancellor's case, if he were his father, he would rather fling away the gains of two or £3,000, than have it said that the timber, which should have been the King's, if it had continued the Duke of Albemarle's, was concealed by us in favour of my Lord Chancellor; for, says he, he is a great man, and all such as he, and he himself particularly, have a great many enemies that would be glad of such an advantage against him. When I told him it was strange that Sir J. Minnes and Sir G. Carteret, that knew my Lord Chancellor's concernment therein, should not at first inform us, he answered me that for Sir J. Minnes, he is looked upon to be an old good companion, but by nobody at the other end of the towne as any man of business, and that my Lord Chancellor, he dares say, never did tell him of it, only Sir G. Carteret, he do believe, must needs know it, for he and Sir J. Shaw are the greatest confidants he hath in the world. So for himself, he said, he would not mince the matter, but was resolved to do what was fit, and stand upon his owne legs therein, and that he would speak to the Duke, that he and Sir G. Carteret might be appointed to attend my Lord Chancellor in it. All this disturbs me mightily. I know not what to say to it, nor how to carry myself therein; for a compliance will discommend me to Mr. Coventry, and a discompliance to my Lord Chancellor. But I think to let it alone, or at least meddle in it as little more as I can. From thence walked toward Westminster, and being in an idle and wanton humour, walked through Fleet Alley, and there stood a most pretty wench at one of the doors, so I took a turn or two, but what by sense of honour and conscience I would not go in, but much against my will took coach and away, and away to Westminster Hall, and there 'light of Mrs. Lane, and plotted with her to go over the water. So met at White's stairs in Chanel Row, and over to the old house at Lambeth Marsh, and there eat and drank, and had my pleasure of her twice, she being the strangest woman in talk of love to her husband sometimes, and sometimes again she do not care for him, and yet willing enough to allow me a liberty of doing what I would with her. So spending 5s. or 6s. upon her, I could do what I would, and after an hour's stay and more back again and set her ashore there again, and I forward to Fleet Street, and called at Fleet Alley, not knowing how to command myself, and went in and there saw what formerly I have been acquainted with, the wickedness of these houses, and the forcing a man to present expense. The woman indeed is a most lovely woman, but I had no courage to meddle with her for fear of her not being wholesome, and so counterfeiting that I had not money enough, it was pretty to see how cunning she was, would not suffer me to have to do in any manner with her after she saw I had no money, but told me then I would not come again, but she now was sure I would come again, but I hope in God I shall not, for though she be one of the prettiest women I ever saw, yet I fear her abusing me. So desiring God to forgive me for this vanity, I went home, taking some books from my bookseller, and taking his lad home with me, to whom I paid £10 for books I have laid up money for, and laid out within these three weeks, and shall do no more a great while I hope. So to my office writing letters, and then home and to bed, weary of the pleasure I have had to-day, and ashamed to think of it.
23rd (Lord's day). Up very betimes, called by Mr. Cutler, by appointment, and with him in his coach and four horses over London Bridge to Kingston, a very pleasant journey, and at Hampton Court by nine o'clock, and in our way very good and various discourse, as he is a man, that though I think he be a knave, as the world thinks him, yet a man of great experience and worthy to be heard discourse. When we come there, we to Sir W. Coventry's chamber, and there discoursed long with him, he and I alone, the others being gone away, and so walked together through the garden to the house, where we parted, I observing with a little trouble that he is too great now to expect too much familiarity with, and I find he do not mind me as he used to do, but when I reflect upon him and his business I cannot think much of it, for I do not observe anything but the same great kindness from him. I followed the King to chappell, and there hear a good sermon; and after sermon with my Lord Arlington, Sir Thomas Ingram and others, spoke to the Duke about Tangier, but not to much purpose. I was not invited any whither to dinner, though a stranger, which did also trouble me; but yet I must remember it is a Court, and indeed where most are strangers; but, however, Cutler carried me to Mr. Marriott's the house-keeper, and there we had a very good dinner and good company, among others Lilly, the painter. Thence to the councill-chamber, where in a back room I sat all the afternoon, but the councill begun late to sit, and spent most of the time upon Morisco's Tarr businesse. They sat long, and I forced to follow Sir Thomas Ingram, the Duke, and others, so that when I got free and come to look for Cutler, he was gone with his coach, without leaving any word with any body to tell me so; so that I was forced with great trouble to walk up and down looking of him, and at last forced to get a boat to carry me to Kingston, and there, after eating a bit at a neat inne, which pleased me well, I took boat, and slept all the way, without intermission, from thence to Queenhive, where, it being about two o'clock, too late and too soon to go home to bed, I lay and slept till about four,
23rd. Up, and to my chamber doing several things there of moment, and then comes Sympson, the Joyner; and he and I with great pains contriving presses to put my books up in: they now growing numerous, and lying one upon another on my chairs, I lose the use to avoyde the trouble of removing them, when I would open a book. Thence out to the Excise office about business, and then homewards met Colvill, who tells me he hath £1000 ready for me upon a tally; which pleases me, and yet I know not now what to do with it, having already as much money as is fit for me to have in the house, but I will have it. I did also meet Alderman Backewell, who tells me of the hard usage he now finds from Mr. Fen, in not getting him a bill or two paid, now that he can be no more usefull to him; telling me that what by his being abroad and Shaw's death he hath lost the ball, but that he doubts not to come to give a kicke at it still, and then he shall be wiser and keepe it while he hath it. But he says he hath a good master, the King, who will not suffer him to be undone, as otherwise he must have been, and I believe him. So home and to dinner, where I confess, reflecting upon the ease and plenty that I live in, of money, goods, servants, honour, every thing, I could not but with hearty thanks to Almighty God ejaculate my thanks to Him while I was at dinner, to myself. After dinner to the office and there till five or six o'clock, and then by coach to St. James's and there with Sir W. Coventry and Sir G. Downing to take the gyre in the Parke. All full of expectation of the fleete's engagement, but it is not yet. Sir W. Coventry says they are eighty-nine men-of-warr, but one fifth-rate, and that, the Sweepstakes, which carries forty guns. They are most infinitely manned. He tells me the Loyall London, Sir J. Smith (which, by the way, he commends to be the-best ship in the world, large and small), hath above eight hundred men; and moreover takes notice, which is worth notice, that the fleete hath lane now near fourteen days without any demand for a farthingworth of any thing of any kind, but only to get men. He also observes, that with this excesse of men, nevertheless, they have thought fit to leave behind them sixteen ships, which they have robbed of their men, which certainly might have been manned, and they been serviceable in the fight, and yet the fleete well-manned, according to the excesse of supernumeraries, which we hear they have. At least two or three of them might have been left manned, and sent away with the Gottenburgh ships. They conclude this to be much the best fleete, for force of guns, greatnesse and number of ships and men, that ever England did see; being, as Sir W. Coventry reckons, besides those left behind, eighty-nine men of warr and twenty fire-ships, though we cannot hear that they have with them above eighteen. The French are not yet joined with the Dutch, which do dissatisfy the Hollanders, and if they should have a defeat, will undo De Witt; the people generally of Holland do hate this league with France. We cannot think of any business, but lie big with expectation of the issue of this fight, but do conclude that, this fight being over, we shall be able to see the whole issue of the warr, good or bad. So homeward, and walked over the Parke (St. James's) with Sir G. Downing, and at White Hall took a coach; and there to supper with much pleasure and to bed.
23rd: Up betimes and to the office, doing something towards our great account to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury, and anon the office sat, and all the morning doing business. At noon home to dinner, and then close to my business all the afternoon. In the evening Sir R. Ford is come back from the Prince and tells Sir W. Batten and me how basely Sir W. Pen received our letter we sent him about the prizes at Hull, and slily answered him about the Prince's leaving all his concerns to him, but the Prince did it afterward by letter brought by Sir R. Ford to us, which Sir W. Pen knows not of, but a very rogue he is. By and by comes sudden news to me by letter from the Clerke of the Cheque at Gravesend, that there were thirty sail of Dutch men-of-war coming up into the Hope this last tide: which I told Sir W. Pen of; but he would not believe it, but laughed, and said it was a fleete of Billanders,"Bilander. A small merchant vessel with two masts, particularly distinguished from other vessels with two masts by the form of her mainsail, which is bent to the whole length of her yard, hanging fore and aft, and inclined to the horizon at an angle of about 45 deg. Few vessels are now rigged in this manner, and the name is rather indiscriminately used."--Smyth's Sailor's Word-Book.
and that the guns that were heard was the salutation of the Swede's Ambassador that comes over with them. But within half an hour comes another letter from Captain Proud, that eight of them were come into the Hope, and thirty more following them, at ten this morning. By and by comes an order from White Hall to send down one of our number to Chatham, fearing that, as they did before, they may make a show first up hither, but then go to Chatham: so my Lord Bruncker do go, and we here are ordered to give notice to the merchant men-of-war, gone below the barricado at Woolwich, to come up again. So with much trouble to supper, home and to bed.
23rd. Up, and all day long, but at dinner, at the Office, at work, till I was almost blind, which makes my heart sad.