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Wednesday, 15th August 1660

15th. To the office, and after dinner by water to White Hall, where I found the King gone this morning by 5 of the clock to see a Dutch pleasure-boat below bridge,    A yacht which was greatly admired, and was imitated and improved by Commissioner Pett, who built a yacht for the King in 1661, which was called the "Jenny." Queen Elizabeth had a yacht, and one was built by Phineas Pett in 1604.
where he dines, and my Lord with him. The King do tire all his people that are about him with early rising since he came. To the office, all the afternoon I staid there, and in the evening went to Westminster Hall, where I staid at Mrs. Michell's, and with her and her husband sent for some drink, and drank with them. By the same token she and Mrs. Murford and another old woman of the Hall were going a gossiping tonight. From thence to my Lord's, where I found him within, and he did give me direction about his business in his absence, he intending to go into the country to-morrow morning. Here I lay all night in the old chamber which I had now given up to W. Howe, with whom I did intend to lie, but he and I fell to play with one another, so that I made him to go lie with Mr. Sheply. So I lay alone all night.

Thursday, 15th August 1661

15th. To the Privy Seal and Whitehall, up and down, and at noon Sir W. Pen carried me to Paul's, and so I walked to the Wardrobe and dined with my Lady, and there told her, of my Lord's sickness (of which though it hath been the town-talk this fortnight, she had heard nothing) and recovery, of which she was glad, though hardly persuaded of the latter. I found my Lord Hinchingbroke better and better, and the worst past. Thence to the Opera, which begins again to-day with "The Witts," never acted yet with scenes; and the King and Duke and Duchess were there (who dined to-day with Sir H. Finch, reader at the Temple, in great state); and indeed it is a most excellent play, and admirable scenes. So home and was overtaken by Sir W. Pen in his coach, who has been this afternoon with my Lady Batten, &c., at the Theatre. So I followed him to the Dolphin, where Sir W. Batten was, and there we sat awhile, and so home after we had made shift to fuddle Mr. Falconer of Woolwich. So home.

Friday, 15th August 1662

15th. Up very early, and up about seeing how my work proceeds, and am pretty well pleased therewith; especially my wife's closet will be very pretty. So to the office and there very busy, and many people coming to me. At noon to the Change, and there hear of some Quakers that are seized on, that would have blown up the prison in Southwark where they are put. So to the Swan, in Old Fish Street, where Mr. Brigden and his father-in-law, Blackbury, of whom we had bought timber in the office, but have not dealt well with us, did make me a fine dinner only to myself; and after dinner comes in a jugler, which shewed us very pretty tricks. I seemed very pleasant, but am no friend to the man's dealings with us in the office. After an hour or two sitting after dinner talking about office business, where I had not spent any time a great while, I went to Paul's Church Yard to my bookseller's; and there I hear that next Sunday will be the last of a great many Presbyterian ministers in town, who, I hear, will give up all. I pray God the issue may be good, for the discontent is great. Home and to my office till 9 at night doing business, and so to bed. My mind well pleased with a letter I found at home from Mr. Coventry, expressing his satisfaction in a letter I writ last night, and sent him this morning, to be corrected by him in order to its sending down to all the Yards as a charge to them.

Saturday, 15th August 1663

15th. Lay pretty long in bed, being a little troubled with some pain got by wind and cold, and so up with good peace of mind, hoping that my wife will mind her house and servants, and so to the office, and being too soon to sit walked to my viail, which is well nigh done, and I believe I may have it home to my mind next week. So back to my office, and there we sat all the morning, I till 2 o'clock before I could go to dinner again. After dinner walked forth to my instrument maker, and there had my rule he made me lay now so perfected, that I think in all points I have never need or desire a better, or think that any man yet had one so good in all the several points of it for my use. So by water down to Deptford, taking into my boat with me Mr. Palmer, one whom I knew and his wife when I was first married, being an acquaintance of my wife's and her friends lodging at Charing Cross during our differences. He joyed me in my condition, and himself it seems is forced to follow the law in a common ordinary way, but seems to do well, and is a sober man, enough by his discourse. He landed with me at Deptford, where he saw by the officers' respect to me a piece of my command, and took notice of it, though God knows I hope I shall not be elated with that, but rather desire to be known for serving the King well, and doing my duty. He gone I walked up and down the yard a while discoursing with the officers, and so by water home meditating on my new Rule with great pleasure. So to my office, and there by candle light doing business, and so home to supper and to bed.

Monday, 15th August 1664

15th. Up, and with Sir J. Minnes by coach to St. James's, and there did our business with the Duke, who tells us more and more signs of a Dutch warr, and how we must presently set out a fleete for Guinny, for the Dutch are doing so, and there I believe the warr will begin. Thence home with him again, in our way he talking of his cures abroad, while he was with the King as a doctor, and above all men the pox. And among others, Sir J. Denham he told me he had cured, after it was come to an ulcer all over his face, to a miracle. To the Coffee-house I, and so to the 'Change a little, and then home to dinner with Creed, whom I met at the Coffee-house, and after dinner by coach set him down at the Temple, and I and my wife to Mr. Blagrave's. They being none of them at home; I to the Hall, leaving her there, and thence to the Trumpett, whither came Mrs. Lane, and there begins a sad story how her husband, as I feared, proves not worth a farthing, and that she is with child and undone, if I do not get him a place. I had my pleasure here of her, and she, like an impudent jade, depends upon my kindness to her husband, but I will have no more to do with her, let her brew as she has baked, seeing she would not take my counsel about Hawly. After drinking we parted, and I to Blagrave's, and there discoursed with Mrs. Blagrave about her kinswoman, who it seems is sickly even to frantiqueness sometimes, and among other things chiefly from love and melancholy upon the death of her servant,--    Servant = lover.
--insomuch that she telling us all most simply and innocently I fear she will not be able to come to us with any pleasure, which I am sorry for, for I think she would have pleased us very well. In comes he, and so to sing a song and his niece with us, but she sings very meanly. So through the Hall and thence by coach home, calling by the way at Charing Crosse, and there saw the great Dutchman that is come over, under whose arm I went with my hat on, and could not reach higher than his eye-browes with the tip of my fingers, reaching as high as I could. He is a comely and well-made man, and his wife a very little, but pretty comely Dutch woman. It is true, he wears pretty high-heeled shoes, but not very high, and do generally wear a turbant, which makes him show yet taller than really he is, though he is very tall, as I have said before. Home to my office, and then to supper, and then to my office again late, and so home to bed, my wife and I troubled that we do not speed better in this business of her woman.

Tuesday, 15th August 1665

15th. Up by 4 o'clock and walked to Greenwich, where called at Captain Cocke's and to his chamber, he being in bed, where something put my last night's dream into my head, which I think is the best that ever was dreamt, which was that I had my Lady Castlemayne in my armes and was admitted to use all the dalliance I desired with her, and then dreamt that this could not be awake, but that it was only a dream; but that since it was a dream, and that I took so much real pleasure in it, what a happy thing it would be if when we are in our graves (as Shakespeere resembles it) we could dream, and dream but such dreams as this, that then we should not need to be so fearful of death, as we are this plague time. Here I hear that news is brought Sir G. Carteret that my Lord Hinchingbrooke is not well, and so cannot meet us at Cranborne to-night. So I to Sir G. Carteret's; and there was sorry with him for our disappointment. So we have put off our meeting there till Saturday next. Here I staid talking with Sir G. Carteret, he being mighty free with me in his business, and among other things hath ordered Rider and Cutler to put into my hands copper to the value of £5,000 (which Sir G. Carteret's share it seems come to in it), which is to raise part of the money he is to layout for a purchase for my Lady Jemimah. Thence he and I to Sir J. Minnes's by invitation, where Sir W. Batten and my Lady, and my Lord Bruncker, and all of us dined upon a venison pasty and other good meat, but nothing well dressed. But my pleasure lay in getting some bills signed by Sir G. Carteret, and promise of present payment from Mr. Fenn, which do rejoice my heart, it being one of the heaviest things I had upon me, that so much of the little I have should lie (viz. near £1000) in the King's hands. Here very merry and (Sir G. Carteret being gone presently after dinner) to Captain Cocke's, and there merry, and so broke up and I by water to the Duke of Albemarle, with whom I spoke a great deale in private, they being designed to send a fleete of ships privately to the Streights. No news yet from our fleete, which is much wondered at, but the Duke says for certain guns have been heard to the northward very much. It was dark before I could get home, and so land at Church-yard stairs, where, to my great trouble, I met a dead corps of the plague, in the narrow ally just bringing down a little pair of stairs. But I thank God I was not much disturbed at it. However, I shall beware of being late abroad again.

Wednesday, 15th August 1666

15th. Mighty sleepy; slept till past eight of the clock, and was called up by a letter from Sir W. Coventry, which, among other things, tells me how we have burned one hundred and sixty ships of the enemy within the Fly.    On the 8th August the Duke of Albemarle reported to Lord Arlington that he had "sent 1000 good men under Sir R. Holmes and Sir William Jennings to destroy the islands of Vlie and Schelling." On the 10th James Hayes wrote to Williamson: "On the 9th at noon smoke was seen rising from several places in the island of Vlie, and the 10th brought news that Sir Robert had burned in the enemy's harbour 160 outward bound valuable merchant men and three men-of-war, and taken a little pleasure boat and eight guns in four hours. The loss is computed at a million sterling, and will make great confusion when the people see themselves in the power of the English at their very doors. Sir Robert then landed his forces, and is burning the houses in Vlie and Schelling as bonfires for his good success at sea" ("Calendar of State Papers," 1666-67, pp. 21,27).

I up, and with all possible haste, and in pain for fear of coming late, it being our day of attending the Duke of Yorke, to St. James's, where they are full of the particulars; how they are generally good merchant ships, some of them laden and supposed rich ships. We spent five fire-ships upon them. We landed on the Schelling (Sir Philip Howard with some men, and Holmes, I think; with others, about 1000 in all), and burned a town; and so come away. By and by the Duke of Yorke with his books showed us the very place and manner, and that it was not our design or expectation to have done this, but only to have landed on the Fly, and burned some of their store; but being come in, we spied those ships, and with our long boats, one by one, fired them, our ships running all aground, it being so shoal water. We were led to this by, it seems, a renegado captain of the Hollanders, who found himself ill used by De Ruyter for his good service, and so come over to us, and hath done us good service; so that now we trust him, and he himself did go on this expedition. The service is very great, and our joys as great for it. All this will make the Duke of Albemarle in repute again, I doubt, though there is nothing of his in this. But, Lord! to see what successe do, whether with or without reason, and making a man seem wise, notwithstanding never so late demonstration of the profoundest folly in the world. Thence walked over the Parke with Sir W. Coventry, in our way talking of the unhappy state of our office; and I took an opportunity to let him know, that though the backwardnesses of all our matters of the office may be well imputed to the known want of money, yet, perhaps, there might be personal and particular failings; and that I did, therefore, depend still upon his promise of telling me whenever he finds any ground to believe any defect or neglect on my part, which he promised me still to do; and that there was none he saw, nor, indeed, says he, is there room now-a-days to find fault with any particular man, while we are in this condition for money. This, methought, did not so well please me; but, however, I am glad I have said this, thereby giving myself good grounds to believe that at this time he did not want an occasion to have said what he pleased to me, if he had had anything in his mind, which by his late distance and silence I have feared. But then again I am to consider he is grown a very great man, much greater than he was, and so must keep more distance; and, next, that the condition of our office will not afford me occasion of shewing myself so active and deserving as heretofore; and, lastly, the muchness of his business cannot suffer him to mind it, or give him leisure to reflect on anything, or shew the freedom and kindnesse that he used to do. But I think I have done something considerable to my satisfaction in doing this; and that if I do but my duty remarkably from this time forward, and not neglect it, as I have of late done, and minded my pleasures, I may be as well as ever I was. Thence to the Exchequer, but did nothing, they being all gone from their offices; and so to the Old Exchange, where the towne full of the good newes, but I did not stay to tell or hear any, but home, my head akeing and drowsy, and to dinner, and then lay down upon the couch, thinking to get a little rest, but could not. So down the river, reading "The Adventures of Five Houres," which the more I read the more I admire. So down below Greenwich, but the wind and tide being against us, I back again to Deptford, and did a little business there, and thence walked to Redriffe; and so home, and to the office a while. In the evening comes W. Batelier and his sister, and my wife, and fair Mrs. Turner into the garden, and there we walked, and then with my Lady Pen and Pegg in a-doors, and eat and were merry, and so pretty late broke up, and to bed. The guns of the Tower going off, and there being bonefires also in the street for this late good successe.

Thursday, 15th August 1667

15th. Up, and to the office betimes, where busy, and sat all the morning, vexed with more news of Carcasses proceedings at the Council, insomuch as we four,    Sir
J. Minnes,    Sir
W. Batten, (Sir) W. Pen, and myself, did make an appointment to dine with Sir W. Coventry to-day to discourse it with him, which we did by going thither as soon as the office was up, and there dined, and very merry, and many good stories, and after dinner to our discourse about Carcasse, and how much we are troubled that we should be brought, as they say we shall, to defend our report before the Council-board with him, and to have a clerk imposed on us. He tells us in short that there is no intention in the Lords for the latter, but wholly the contrary. That they do not desire neither to do anything in disrespect to the Board, and he will endeavour to prevent, as he hath done, our coming to plead at the table with our clerk, and do believe the whole will amount to nothing at the Council, only what he shall declare in behalf of the King against the office, if he offers anything, will and ought to be received, to which we all shew a readiness, though I confess even that (though I think I am as clear as the clearest of them), yet I am troubled to think what trouble a rogue may without cause give a man, though it be only by bespattering a man, and therefore could wish that over, though I fear nothing to be proved. Thence with much satisfaction, and Sir W. Pen and I to the Duke's house, where a new play. The King and Court there: the house full, and an act begun. And so went to the King's, and there saw "The Merry Wives of Windsor:" which did not please me at all, in no part of it, and so after the play done we to the Duke's house, where my wife was by appointment in Sir W. Pen's coach, and she home, and we home, and I to my office, where busy till letters done, and then home to supper and to bed.

Saturday, 15th August 1668

15th. Up, and to the office, where all the morning busy, and after dinner with my wife, Mercer, and Deb., to the King's playhouse, and there saw "Love's Mistresse" revived, the thing pretty good, but full of variety of divertisement. So home and to my business at the office, my eyes bad again, and so to bed.