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20th (Office day). As Sir W. Pen and I were walking in the garden, a messenger came to me from the Duke of York to fetch me to the Lord Chancellor. So (Mrs. Turner with her daughter The. being come to my house to speak with me about a friend of hers to send to sea) I went with her in her coach as far as Worcester House, but my Lord Chancellor being gone to the House of Lords, I went thither, and (there being a law case before them this day) got in, and there staid all the morning, seeing their manner of sitting on woolpacks, &c., which I never did before.It is said that these woolpacks were placed in the House of Lords for the judges to sit on, so that the fact that wool was a main source of our national wealth might be kept in the popular mind. The Lord Chancellor's seat is now called the Woolsack.
After the House was up, I spoke to my Lord, and had order from him to come to him at night. This morning Mr. Creed did give me the Papers that concern my Lord's sea commission, which he left in my hands and went to sea this day to look after the gratuity money.
This afternoon at the Privy Seal, where reckoning with Mr. Moore, he had got £100 for me together, which I was glad of, guessing that the profits of this month would come to £100.
In the evening I went all alone to drink at Mr. Harper's, where I found Mrs. Crisp's daughter, with whom and her friends I staid and drank, and so with W. Hewer by coach to Worcester House, where I light, sending him home with the £100 that I received to-day. Here I staid, and saw my Lord Chancellor come into his Great Hall, where wonderful how much company there was to expect him at a Seal. Before he would begin any business, he took my papers of the state of the debts of the Fleet, and there viewed them before all the people, and did give me his advice privately how to order things, to get as much money as we can of the Parliament. That being done, I went home, where I found all my things come home from sea (sent by desire by Mr. Dun), of which I was glad, though many of my things are quite spoilt with mould by reason of lying so long a shipboard, and my cabin being not tight. I spent much time to dispose of them tonight, and so to bed.
20th. At the office in the morning and all the afternoon at home to put my papers in order. This day we come to some agreement with Sir R. Ford for his house to be added to the office to enlarge our quarters.
20th. Up early, and to my office, and thence to my Lord Sandwich, whom I found in bed, and he sent for me in. Among other talk, he do tell me that he hath put me into commission with a great many great persons in the business of Tangier, which is a very great honour to me, and may be of good concernment to me. By and by comes in Mr. Coventry to us, whom my Lord tells that he is also put into the commission, and that I am there, of which he said he was glad; and did tell my Lord that I was indeed the life of this office, and much more to my commendation beyond measure. And that, whereas before he did bear me respect for his sake, he do do it now much more for my own; which is a great blessing to me. Sir G. Carteret having told me what he did yesterday concerning his speaking to my Lord Chancellor about me. So that on all hands, by God's blessing, I find myself a very rising man. By and by comes my Lord Peterborough in, with whom we talked a good while, and he is going tomorrow towards Tangier again. I perceive there is yet good hopes of peace with Guyland,--A Moorish usurper, who had put himself at the head of an army for the purpose of attacking Tangier.--B.
--which is of great concernment to Tangier. And many other things I heard which yet I understand not, and so cannot remember. My Lord and Lord Peterborough going out to the Solicitor General about the drawing up of this Commission, I went to Westminster Hall with Mr. Moore, and there meeting Mr. Townsend, he would needs take me to Fleet Street, to one Mr. Barwell, squire sadler to the King, and there we and several other Wardrobe-men dined. We had a venison pasty, and other good plain and handsome dishes; the mistress of the house a pretty, well-carriaged woman, and a fine hand she hath; and her maid a pretty brown lass. But I do find my nature ready to run back to my old course of drinking wine and staying from my business, and yet, thank God, I was not fully contented with it, but did stay at little ease, and after dinner hastened home by water, and so to my office till late at night. In the evening Mr. Hayward came to me to advise with me about the business of the Chest, which I have now a mind to put in practice, though I know it will vex Sir W. Batten, which is one of the ends (God forgive me) that I have in it. So home, and eat a bit, and to bed.
20th. Up betimes and to my office (having first been angry with my brother John, and in the heat of my sudden passion called him Asse and coxcomb, for which I am sorry, it being but for leaving the key of his chamber with a spring lock within side of his door), and there we sat all the morning, and at noon dined at home, and there found a little girl, which she told my wife her name was Jinny, by which name we shall call her. I think a good likely girl, and a parish child of St. Bride's, of honest parentage, and recommended by the churchwarden. After dinner among my joyners laying my floors, which please me well, and so to my office, and we sat this afternoon upon an extraordinary business of victualling. In the evening came Commissioner Pett, who fell foule on mee for my carriage to him at Chatham, wherein, after protestation of my love and good meaning to him, he was quiet; but I doubt he will not be able to do the service there that any other man of his ability would. Home in the evening my viall (and lute new strung being brought home too), and I would have paid Mr. Hunt for it, but he did not come along with it himself, which I expected and was angry for it, so much is it against my nature to owe anything to any body. This evening the girle that was brought to me to-day for so good a one, being cleansed of lice this day by my wife, and good, new clothes put on her back, she run away from Goody Taylour that was shewing her the way to the bakehouse, and we heard no more of her. So to supper and to bed.
20th. Up and to the office a while, but this day the Parliament meeting only to be adjourned to November (which was done, accordingly), we did not meet, and so I forth to bespeak a case to be made to keep my stone in, which will cost me 25s. Thence I walked to Cheapside, there to see the effect of a fire there this morning, since four o'clock; which I find in the house of Mr. Bois, that married Dr. Fuller's niece, who are both out of towne, leaving only a mayde and man in towne. It begun in their house, and hath burned much and many houses backward, though none forward; and that in the great uniform pile of buildings in the middle of Cheapside. I am very sorry for them, for the Doctor's sake. Thence to the 'Change, and so home to dinner. And thence to Sir W. Batten's, whither Sir Richard Ford came, the Sheriffe, who hath been at this fire all the while; and he tells me, upon my question, that he and the Mayor were there, as it is their dutys to be, not only to keep the peace, but they have power of commanding the pulling down of any house or houses, to defend the whole City. By and by comes in the Common Cryer of the City to speak with him; and when he was gone, says he, "You may see by this man the constitution of the Magistracy of this City; that this fellow's place, I dare give him (if he will be true to me) £1000 for his profits every year, and expect to get £500 more to myself thereby. When," says he, "I in myself am forced to spend many times as much." By and by came Mr. Coventry, and so we met at the office, to hire ships for Guinny, and that done broke up. I to Sir W. Batten's, there to discourse with Mrs. Falconer, who hath been with Sir W. Pen this evening, after Mr. Coventry had promised her half what W. Bodham had given him for his place, but Sir W. Pen, though he knows that, and that Mr. Bodham hath said that his place hath cost him £100 and would £100 more, yet is he so high against the poor woman that he will not hear to give her a farthing, but it seems do listen after a lease where he expects Mr. Falconer hath put in his daughter's life, and he is afraid that that is not done, and did tell Mrs. Falconer that he would see it and know what is done therein in spite of her, when, poor wretch, she neither do nor can hinder him the knowing it. Mr. Coventry knows of this business of the lease, and I believe do think of it as well as I. But the poor woman is gone home without any hope, but only Mr. Coventry's own nobleness. So I to my office and wrote many letters, and so to supper and to bed.
20th (Lord's day). Sir G. Carteret come and walked by my bedside half an houre, talking and telling me how my Lord is in this unblameable in all this ill-successe, he having followed orders; and that all ought to be imputed to the falsenesse of the King of Denmarke, who, he told me as a secret, had promised to deliver up the Dutch ships to us, and we expected no less; and swears it will, and will easily, be the ruine of him and his kingdom, if we fall out with him, as we must in honour do; but that all that can be, must be to get the fleete out again to intercept De Witt, who certainly will be coming home with the East India ships, he being gone thither. He being gone, I up and with Fenn, being ready to walk forth to see the place; and I find it to be a very noble seat in a noble forest, with the noblest prospect towards Windsor, and round about over many countys, that can be desired; but otherwise a very melancholy place, and little variety save only trees. I had thoughts of going home by water, and of seeing Windsor Chappell and Castle, but finding at my coming in that Sir G. Carteret did prevent me in speaking for my sudden return to look after business, I did presently eat a bit off the spit about 10 o'clock, and so took horse for Stanes, and thence to Brainford to Mr. Povy's, the weather being very pleasant to ride in. Mr. Povy not being at home I lost my labour, only eat and drank there with his lady, and told my bad newes, and hear the plague is round about them there. So away to Brainford; and there at the inn that goes down to the water-side, I 'light and paid off my post-horses, and so slipped on my shoes, and laid my things by, the tide not serving, and to church, where a dull sermon, and many Londoners. After church to my inn, and eat and drank, and so about seven o'clock by water, and got between nine and ten to Queenhive, very dark. And I could not get my waterman to go elsewhere for fear of the plague. Thence with a lanthorn, in great fear of meeting of dead corpses, carried to be buried; but, blessed be God, met none, but did see now and then a linke (which is the mark of them) at a distance. So got safe home about 10 o'clock, my people not all abed, and after supper I weary to bed.
20th. Waked this morning, about six o'clock, with a violent knocking at Sir J. Minnes's doore, to call up Mrs. Hammon, crying out that Sir J. Minnes is a-dying. He come home ill of an ague on Friday night. I saw him on Saturday, after his fit of the ague, and then was pretty lusty. Which troubles me mightily, for he is a very good, harmless, honest gentleman, though not fit for the business. But I much fear a worse may come, that may be more uneasy to me. Up, and to Deptford by water, reading "Othello, Moore of Venice," which I ever heretofore esteemed a mighty good play, but having so lately read "The Adventures of Five Houres," it seems a mean thing. Walked back, and so home, and then down to the Old Swan and drank at Betty Michell's, and so to Westminster to the Exchequer about my quarter tallies, and so to Lumbard Streete to choose stuff to hang my new intended closet, and have chosen purple. So home to dinner, and all the afternoon till almost midnight upon my Tangier accounts, getting Tom Wilson to help me in writing as I read, and at night W. Hewer, and find myself most happy in the keeping of all my accounts, for that after all the changings and turnings necessary in such an account, I find myself right to a farthing in an account of £127,000. This afternoon I visited Sir J. Minnes, who, poor man, is much impatient by these few days' sickness, and I fear indeed it will kill him.
20th. Up, and to my chamber to set down my journall for the last three days, and then to the office, where busy all the morning. At noon home to dinner, and then with my wife abroad, set her down at the Exchange, and I to St. James's, where find Sir W. Coventry alone, and fell to discourse of retrenchments; and thereon he tells how he hath already propounded to the Lords Committee of the Councils how he would have the Treasurer of the Navy a less man, that might not sit at the Board, but be subject to the Board. He would have two Controllers to do his work and two Surveyors, whereof one of each to take it by turns to reside at Portsmouth and Chatham by a kind of rotation; he would have but only one Clerk of the Acts. He do tell me he hath propounded how the charge of the Navy in peace shall come within £200,000, by keeping out twenty-four ships in summer, and ten in the winter. And several other particulars we went over of retrenchment: and I find I must provide some things to offer that I may be found studious to lessen the King's charge. By and by comes my Lord Bruncker, and then we up to the Duke of York, and there had a hearing of our usual business, but no money to be heard of--no, not £100 upon the most pressing service that can be imagined of bringing in the King's timber from Whittlewood, while we have the utmost want of it, and no credit to provide it elsewhere, and as soon as we had done with the Duke of York, Sir W. Coventry did singleout
Sir W. Pen and me, and desired us to lend the King some money, out of the prizes we have taken by Hogg. He did not much press it, and we made but a merry answer thereto; but I perceive he did ask it seriously, and did tell us that there never was so much need of it in the world as now, we being brought to the lowest straits that can be in the world. This troubled me much. By and by Sir W. Batten told me that he heard how Carcasse do now give out that he will hang me, among the rest of his threats of him and Pen, which is the first word I ever heard of the kind from him concerning me. It do trouble me a little, though I know nothing he can possibly find to fasten on me. Thence, with my Lord Bruncker to the Duke's Playhouse (telling my wife so at the 'Change, where I left her), and there saw "Sir Martin Marr-all" again, which I have now seen three times, and it hath been acted but four times, and still find it a very ingenious play, and full of variety. So home, and to the office, where my eyes would not suffer me to do any thing by candlelight, and so called my wife and walked in the garden. She mighty pressing for a new pair of cuffs, which I am against the laying out of money upon yet, which makes her angry. So home to supper and to bed.
20th. Betimes at my business again, and so to the office, and dined with Brouncker and J. Minnes, at Sir W. Pen's at a bad pasty of venison, and so to work again, and at it till past twelve at night, that I might get my great letterIn the Pepysian Library is a MS. (No. 2242), entitled, "Papers conteyning my addresse to his Royall Highnesse James Duke of Yorke, Lord High Admirall of England, &c., by letter dated the 20th of August, 1668, humbly tendering him my advice touching the present State of the Office of the Navy, with his Royall Highness's proceedings upon the same, and their result."
to the Duke of York ready against to-morrow, which I shall do, to my great content. So to bed.