Welcome and please enjoy your visit!

Use the calendar on the right to navigate through the diary entries and the menus at the top to access other pages. We have also written a page that explains more about the site.

Wednesday, 1st August 1660

August 1st. Up very early, and by water to Whitehall to my Lord's, and there up to my Lord's lodging (Win. Howe being now ill of the gout at Mr. Pierce's), and there talked with him about the affairs of the Navy, and how I was now to wait today at the Privy Seal. Commissioner Pett went with me, whom I desired to make my excuse at the office for my absence this day. Hence to the Privy Seal Office, where I got (by Mr. Mathews' means) possession of the books and table, but with some expectation of Baron's bringing of a warrant from the King to have this month. Nothing done this morning, Baron having spoke to Mr. Woodson and Groome (clerks to Mr. Trumbull of the Signet) to keep all work in their hands till the afternoon, at which time he expected to have his warrant from the King for this month.--    The clerks of the Privy Seal took the duty of attendance for a month by turns.
--I took at noon Mr. Harper to the Leg in King Street, and did give him his dinner, who did still advise me much to act wholly myself at the Privy Seal, but I told him that I could not, because I had other business to take up my time. In the afternoon at, the office again, where we had many things to sign; and I went to the Council Chamber, and there got my Lord to sign the first bill, and the rest all myself; but received no money today. After I had signed all, I went with Dick Scobell and Luellin to drink at a bottle beer house in the Strand, and after staying there a while (had sent W. Hewer home before), I took boat and homewards went, and in Fish Street bought a Lobster, and as I had bought it I met with Winter and Mr. Delabarr, and there with a piece of sturgeon of theirs we went to the Sun Tavern in the street and ate them. Late home and to bed.

Thursday, 1st August 1661

August 1st. This morning Sir Williams both, and my wife and I and Mrs. Margarett Pen (this first time that I have seen her since she came from Ireland) went by coach to Walthamstow, a-gossiping to Mrs. Browne, where I did give her six silver spoons--    But not the porringer of silver. See May 29th, 1661.--M. B
--for her boy. Here we had a venison pasty, brought hot from London, and were very merry. Only I hear how nurse's husband has spoken strangely of my Lady Batten how she was such a man's whore, who indeed is known to leave her her estate, which we would fain have reconciled to-day, but could not and indeed I do believe that the story is true. Back again at night home.

Friday, 1st August 1662

August 1st. Up, my head aching, and to my office, where Cooper read me another lecture upon my modell very pleasant. So to my business all the morning, which increases by people coming now to me to the office. At noon to the Exchange, where meeting Mr. Creed and Moore we three to a house hard by (which I was not pleased with) to dinner, and after dinner and some discourse ordinary by coach home, it raining hard, and so at the office all the afternoon till evening to my chamber, where, God forgive me, I was sorry to hear that Sir W. Pen's maid Betty was gone away yesterday, for I was in hopes to have had a bout with her before she had gone, she being very pretty. I had also a mind to my own wench, but I dare not for fear she should prove honest and refuse and then tell my wife. I staid up late, putting things in order for my going to Chatham to-morrow, and so to bed, being in pain . . . with the little riding in a coach to-day from the Exchange, which do trouble me.

Saturday, 1st August 1663

Aug. 1st. Up betimes and got me ready, and so to the office and put things in order for my going. By and by comes Sir G. Carteret, and he and I did some business, and then Mr. Coventry sending for me, he staying in the boat, I got myself presently ready and down to him, he and I by water to Gravesend (his man Lambert with us), and there eat a bit and so mounted, I upon one of his horses which met him there, a brave proud horse, all the way talking of businesses of the office and other matters to good purpose. Being come to Chatham, we put on our boots and so walked to the yard, where we met Commissioner Pett, and there walked up and down looking and inquiring into many businesses, and in the evening went to the Commissioner's and there in his upper Arbor sat and talked, and there pressed upon the Commissioner to take upon him a power to correct and suspend officers that do not their duty and other things, which he unwillingly answered he would if we would own him in it. Being gone thence Mr. Coventry and I did discourse about him, and conclude that he is not able to do the same in that yard that he might and can and it maybe will do in another, what with his old faults and the relations that he has to most people that act there. After an hour or two's discourse at the Hill-house before going to bed, I see him to his and he me to my chamber, he lying in the Treasurer's and I in the Controller's chambers.

Monday, 1st August 1664

August 1st. Up, my mind very light from my last night's accounts, and so up and with Sir J. Minnes, Sir W. Batten, and Sir W. Pen to St. James's, where among other things having prepared with some industry every man a part this morning and no sooner (for fear they should either consider of it or discourse of it one to another) Mr. Coventry did move the Duke and obtain it that one of the clerkes of the Clerke of the Acts should have an addition of £30 a year, as Mr. Turner hath, which I am glad of, that I may give T. Hater £20 and keep £10 towards a boy's keeping. Thence Mr. Coventry and I to the Attorney's chamber at the Temple, but not being there we parted, and I home, and there with great joy told T. Hater what I had done, with which the poor wretch was very glad, though his modesty would not suffer him to say much. So to the Coffee-house, and there all the house full of the victory Generall Soushe    General Soushe was Louis Ratuit, Comte de Souches. The battle was fought at Lewenz (or Leva), in Hungary.--B.
(who is a Frenchman, a soldier of fortune, commanding part of the German army) hath had against the Turke; killing 4,000 men, and taking most extraordinary spoil. Thence taking up Harman and his wife, carried them to Anthony Joyce's, where we had my venison in a pasty well done; but, Lord! to see how much they made of, it, as if they had never eat any before, and very merry we were, but Will most troublesomely so, and I find he and his wife have a most wretched life one with another, but we took no notice, but were very merry as I could be in such company. But Mrs. Harman is a very pretty-humoured wretch, whom I could love with all my heart, being so good and innocent company. Thence to Westminster to Mr. Blagrave's, and there, after singing a thing or two over, I spoke to him about a woman for my wife, and he offered me his kinswoman, which I was glad of, but she is not at present well, but however I hope to have her. Thence to my Lord Chancellor's, and thence with Mr. Coventry, who appointed to meet me there, and with him to the Attorney General, and there with Sir Ph. Warwicke consulted of a new commission to be had through the Broad Seale to enable us to make this contract for Tangier victualling. So home, and there talked long with Will about the young woman of his family which he spoke of for to live with my wife, but though she hath very many good qualitys, yet being a neighbour's child and young and not very staid, I dare not venture of having her, because of her being able to spread any report of our family upon any discontent among the heart of our neighbours. So that my dependance is upon Mr. Blagrave, and so home to supper and to bed. Last night, at 12 o'clock, I was waked with knocking at Sir W. Pen's door; and what was it but people's running up and down to bring him word that his brother,    George Penn, the elder brother of Sir W. Penn, was a wealthy merchant at San Lucar, the port of Seville. He was seized as a heretic by the Holy Office, and cast into a dungeon eight feet square and dark as the grave. There he remained three years, every month being scourged to make him confess his crimes. At last, after being twice put to the rack, he offered to confess whatever they would suggest. His property, £12,000, was then confiscated, his wife, a Catholic, taken from him, and he was banished from Spain for ever.--M. B.
who hath been a good while, it seems, sicke, is dead.

Tuesday, 1st August 1665

August 1st. Slept, and lay long; then up and my Lord    Crew
and Sir G. Carteret being gone abroad, I first to see the bridegroom and bride, and found them both up, and he gone to dress himself. Both red in the face, and well enough pleased this morning with their night's lodging. Thence down and Mr. Brisband and I to billiards: anon come my Lord and Sir G. Carteret in, who have been looking abroad and visiting some farms that Sir G. Carteret hath thereabouts, and, among other things, report the greatest stories of the bigness of the calfes they find there, ready to sell to the butchers, as big, they say, as little Cowes, and that they do give them a piece of chalke to licke, which they hold makes them white in the flesh within. Very merry at dinner, and so to talk and laugh after dinner, and up and down, some to    one
place, some to another, full of content on all sides. Anon about five o'clock, Sir G. Carteret and his lady and I took coach with the greatest joy and kindnesse that could be from the two familys or that ever I saw with so much appearance, and, I believe, reality in all my life. Drove hard home, and it was night ere we got to Deptford, where, with much kindnesse from them to me, I left them, and home to the office, where I find all well, and being weary and sleepy, it being very late, I to bed.

Wednesday, 1st August 1666

August 1st. Up betimes to the settling of my last month's accounts, and I bless God I find them very clear, and that I am worth £5700, the most that ever my book did yet make out. So prepared to attend the Duke of Yorke as usual, but Sir W. Pen, just as I was going out, comes home from Sheernesse, and held me in discourse about publique business, till I come by coach too late to St. James's, and there find that every thing stood still, and nothing done for want of me. Thence walked over the Parke with Sir W. Coventry, who I clearly see is not thoroughly pleased with the late management of the fight, nor with any thing that the Generalls do; only is glad to hear that De Ruyter is out of favour, and that this fight hath cost them 5,000 men, as they themselves do report. And it is a strange thing, as he observes, how now and then the slaughter runs on one hand; there being 5,000 killed on theirs, and not above 400 or 500 killed and wounded on ours, and as many flag-officers on theirs as ordinary captains in ours; there being Everson, and the Admiral and Vice-Admiral of Freezeland on theirs, and Seamour, Martin, and-----, on ours. I left him going to Chappell, it being the common fast day, and the Duke of York at Chappell. And I to Mrs. Martin's, but she abroad, so I sauntered to or again to the Abbey, and then to the parish church, fearfull of being seen to do so, and so after the parish church was ended, I to the Swan and there dined upon a rabbit, and after dinner to Mrs. Martin's, and there find Mrs. Burroughs, and by and by comes a pretty widow, one Mrs. Eastwood, and one Mrs. Fenton, a maid; and here merry kissing and looking on their breasts, and all the innocent pleasure in the world. But, Lord! to see the dissembling of this widow, how upon the singing of a certain jigg by Doll, Mrs. Martin's sister, she seemed to be sick and fainted and God knows what, because the jigg, which her husband (who died this last sickness) loved. But by and by I made her as merry as is possible, and towzed and tumbled her as I pleased, and then carried her and her sober pretty kinswoman Mrs. Fenton home to their lodgings in the new market of my Lord Treasurer's, and there left them. Mightily pleased with this afternoon's mirth, but in great pain to ride in a coach with them, for fear of being seen. So home, and there much pleased with my wife's drawing today in her pictures, and so to supper and to bed very pleasant.

Thursday, 1st August 1667

August 1st. Up, and all the morning at the office. At noon my wife and I dined at Sir W. Pen's, only with Mrs. Turner and her husband, on a damned venison pasty, that stunk like a devil. However, I did not know it till dinner was done. We had nothing but only this, and a leg of mutton, and a pullet or two. Mrs. Markham was here, with her great belly. I was very merry, and after dinner, upon a motion of the women, I was got to go to the play with them-the first I have seen since before the Dutch coming upon our coast, and so to the King's house, to see "The Custome of the Country." The house mighty empty--more than ever I saw it--and an ill play. After the play, we into the house, and spoke with Knipp, who went abroad with us by coach to the Neat Houses in the way to Chelsy; and there, in a box in a tree, we sat and sang, and talked and eat; my wife out of humour, as she always is, when this woman is by. So, after it was dark, we home. Set Knepp down at home, who told us the story how Nell is gone from the King's house, and is kept by my Lord Buckhurst. Then we home, the gates of the City shut, it being so late: and at Newgate we find them in trouble, some thieves having this night broke open prison. So we through, and home; and our coachman was fain to drive hard from two or three fellows, which he said were rogues, that he met at the end of Blow-bladder Street, next Cheapside. So set Mrs. Turner home, and then we home, and I to the Office a little; and so home and to bed, my wife in an ill humour still.

Saturday, 1st August 1668

August 1st. All the morning at the office. After dinner my wife, and Deb., and I, to the King's house again, coming too late yesterday to hear the prologue, and do like the play better now than before; and, indeed, there is a great deal of true wit in it, more than in the common sort of plays, and so home to my business, and at night to bed, my eyes making me sad.