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Saturday, 1st December 1660

December 1st. This morning, observing some things to be laid up not as they should be by the girl, I took a broom and basted her till she cried extremely, which made me vexed, but before I went out I left her appeased. So to Whitehall, where I found Mr. Moore attending for me at the Privy Seal, but nothing to do to-day. I went to my Lord St. Albans lodgings, and found him in bed, talking to a priest (he looked like one) that leaned along over the side of the bed, and there I desired to know his mind about making the catch stay longer, which I got ready for him the other day. He seems to be a fine civil gentleman. To my Lord's, and did give up my audit of his accounts, which I had been then two days about, and was well received by my Lord. I dined with my Lord and Lady, and we had a venison pasty. Mr. Shepley and I went into London, and calling upon Mr. Pinkney, the goldsmith, he took us to the tavern, and gave us a pint of wine, and there fell into our company old Mr. Flower and another gentleman; who tell us how a Scotch knight was killed basely the other day at the Fleece in Covent Garden, where there had been a great many formerly killed. So to Paul's Churchyard, and there I took the little man at Mr. Kirton's and Mr. Shepley to Ringstead's at the Star, and after a pint of wine I went home, my brains somewhat troubled with so much wine, and after a letter or two by the post I went to bed.

Sunday, 1st December 1661

December 1st (Lord's day). In the morning at church and heard Mr. Mills. At home dined and with me by appointment Mr. Sanchy, who should have brought his mistress, Mrs. Mary Archer, of Cambridge, but she could not come, but we had a good dinner for him. And so in the afternoon my wife went to church, and he and I stayed at home and drank and talked, and he stayed with me till night and supped with me, when I expected to have seen Jack Cole and Lem. Wagstaffe, but they did not come. We this day cut a brave collar of brawn from Winchcombe which proves very good, and also opened the glass of girkins which Captain Cocke did give my wife the other day, which are rare things. So at night to bed. There hath lately been great clapping up of some old statesmen, such as Ireton, Moyer, and others, and they say, upon a great plot, but I believe no such thing; but it is but justice that they should be served as they served the poor Cavaliers; and I believe it will oftentimes be so as long as I live, whether there be cause or no. This evening my brother Tom was with me, and I did talk again to him about Mr. Townsend's daughter, and I do intend to put the business in hand. I pray God give a good end to it.

Monday, 1st December 1662

December 1st. Up and by coach with Sir John Minnes and Sir W. Batten to White Hall to the Duke's chamber, where, as is usual, my Lord Sandwich and all of us, after his being ready, to his closett, and there discoursed of matters of the Navy, and here Mr. Coventry did do me the great kindness to take notice to the Duke of my pains in making a collection of all contracts about masts, which have been of great use to us. Thence I to my Lord Sandwich's, to Mr. Moore, to talk a little about business; and then over the Parke (where I first in my life, it being a great frost, did see people sliding with their skeates,    Iron skates appear to have been introduced by the Dutch, as the name certainly was; but we learn from Fitzstephen that bone skates (although not so called) were used in London in the twelfth century.
which is a very pretty art), to Mr. Coventry's chamber to St. James's, where we all met to a venison pasty, and were very merry, Major Norwood being with us, whom they did play upon for his surrendering of Dunkirk. Here we staid till three or four o'clock; and so to the Council Chamber, where there met the Duke of York, Prince Rupert, Duke of Albemarle, my Lord Sandwich, Sir Win. Compton, Mr. Coventry, Sir J. Minnes, Sir R. Ford, Sir W. Rider, myself, and Captain Cuttance, as Commissioners for Tangier. And after our Commission was read by Mr. Creed, who I perceive is to be our Secretary, we did fall to discourse of matters: as, first, the supplying them forthwith with victualls; then the reducing it to make way for the money, which upon their reduction is to go to the building of the Mole; and so to other matters, ordered as against next meeting. This done we broke up, and I to the Cockpitt, with much crowding and waiting, where I saw "The Valiant Cidd"--    Translated from the "Cid" of Corneille
--acted, a play I have read with great delight, but is a most dull thing acted, which I never understood before, there being no pleasure in it, though done by Betterton and by Ianthe, And another fine wench that is come in the room of Roxalana nor did the King or queen once smile all the whole play, nor any of the company seem to take any pleasure but what was in the greatness and gallantry of the company. Thence to my Lord's, and Mr. Moore being in bed I staid not, but with a link walked home and got thither by 12 o'clock, knocked up my boy, and put myself to bed.

Tuesday, 1st December 1663

December 1st. Up and to the office, where we sat all the morning. At noon I home to dinner with my poor wife, with whom now-a-days I enjoy great pleasure in her company and learning of Arithmetique. After dinner I to Guild Hall to hear a tryall at King's Bench, before Lord Chief Justice Hide, about the insurance of a ship, the same I mention in my yesterday's journall, where everything was proved how money was so taken up upon bottomary and insurance, and the ship left by the master and seamen upon rocks, where, when the sea fell at the ebb, she must perish. The master was offered helpe, and he did give the pilotts 20 sols to drink to bid them go about their business, saying that the rocks were old, but his ship was new, and that she was repaired for £6 and less all the damage that she received, and is now brought by one, sent for on purpose by the insurers, into the Thames, with her cargo, vessels of tallow daubed over with butter, instead of all butter, the whole not worth above £500, ship and all, and they had took up, as appeared, above £2,400. He had given his men money to content them; and yet, for all this, he did bring some of them to swear that it was very stormy weather, and    they
did all they could to save her, and that she was seven feete deep water in hold, and were fain to cut her main and foremast, that the master was the last man that went out, and they were fain to force    him
out when she was ready to sink; and her rudder broke off, and she was drawn into the harbour after they were gone, as wrecke all broken, and goods lost: that she could not be carried out again without new building, and many other things so contrary as is not imaginable more. There was all the great counsel in the kingdom in the cause; but after one witnesse or two for the plaintiff, it was cried down as a most notorious cheate; and so the jury, without going out, found it for the plaintiff. But it was pleasant to see what mad sort of testimonys the seamen did give, and could not be got to speak in order: and then their terms such as the judge could not understand; and to hear how sillily the Counsel and judge would speak as to the terms necessary in the matter, would make one laugh: and above all, a Frenchman that was forced to speak in French, and took an English oathe he did not understand, and had an interpreter sworn to tell us what he said, which was the best testimony of all. So home well satisfied with this afternoon's work, purposing to spend an afternoon or two every term so, and so to my office a while and then home to supper, arithmetique with my wife, and to bed. I heard other causes, and saw the course of pleading by being at this trial, and heard and learnt two things: one is that every man has a right of passage in, but not a title to, any highway. The next, that the judge would not suffer Mr. Crow, who hath fined for Alderman, to be called so, but only Mister, and did eight or nine times fret at it, and stop every man that called him so.

Thursday, 1st December 1664

December 1st. Up betimes and to White Hall to a Committee of Tangier, and so straight home and hard to my business at my office till noon, then to dinner, and so to my office, and by and by we sat all the afternoon, then to my office again till past one in the morning, and so home to supper and to bed.

Friday, 1st December 1665

December 1st. This morning to the office, full of resolution to spend the whole day at business, and there, among other things, I did agree with Poynter to be my clerke for my Victualling business, and so all alone all the day long shut up in my little closett at my office, drawing up instructions, which I should long since have done for my Surveyours of the Ports, Sir W. Coventry desiring much to have them, and he might well have expected them long since. After dinner to it again, and at night had long discourse with Gibson, who is for Yarmouth, who makes me understand so much of the victualling business and the pursers' trade, that I am ashamed I should go about the concerning myself in a business which I understand so very very little of, and made me distrust all I had been doing to-day. So I did lay it by till to-morrow morning to think of it afresh, and so home by promise to my wife, to have mirth there. So we had our neighbours, little Miss Tooker and Mrs. Daniels, to dance, and after supper I to bed, and left them merry below, which they did not part from till two or three in the morning.

Saturday, 1st December 1666

December 1st. Up, and to the office, where we sat all the morning. At home to dinner, and then abroad walking to the Old Swan, and in my way I did see a cellar in Tower Streete in a very fresh fire, the late great winds having blown it up.    The fire continued burning in some cellars of the ruins of the city for four months, though it rained in the month of October ten days without ceasing (Rugge's "Diurnal").--B.

It seemed to be only of log-wood, that Hath kept the fire all this while in it. Going further, I met my late Lord Mayor Bludworth, under whom the City was burned, and went with him by water to White Hall. But, Lord! the silly talk that this fellow had, only how ready he would be to part with all his estate in these difficult times to advance the King's service, and complaining that now, as every body did lately in the fire, every body endeavours to save himself, and let the whole perish: but a very weak man he seems to be. I left him at White Hall, he giving 6d. towards the boat, and I to Westminster Hall, where I was again defeated in my expectation of Burroughs. However, I was not much sorry for it, but by coach home, in the evening, calling at Faythorne's, buying three of my Lady Castlemayne's heads, printed this day, which indeed is, as to the head, I think, a very fine picture, and like her. I did this afternoon get Mrs. Michell to let me only have a sight of a pamphlet lately printed, but suppressed and much called after, called "The Catholique's Apology;" lamenting the severity of the Parliament against them, and comparing it with the lenity of other princes to Protestants; giving old and late instances of their loyalty to their princes, whatever is objected against them; and excusing their disquiets in Queen Elizabeth's time, for that it was impossible for them to think her a lawfull Queen, if Queen Mary, who had been owned as such, were so; one being the daughter of the true, and the other of a false wife: and that of the Gunpowder Treason, by saying that it was only the practice of some of us, if not the King, to trepan some of their religion into it, it never being defended by the generality of their Church, nor indeed known by them; and ends with a large Catalogue, in red letters, of the Catholiques which have lost their lives in the quarrel of the late King and this. The thing is very well writ indeed. So home to my letters, and then to my supper and to bed.

Sunday, 1st December 1667

December 1st (Lord's day). Up, and after entering my journal for 2 or 3 days, I to church, where Mr. Mills, a dull sermon: and in our pew there sat a great lady, which I afterwards understood to be my Lady Carlisle, that made her husband a cuckold in Scotland, a very fine woman indeed in person. After sermon home, where W. Hewer dined with us, and after dinner he and I all the afternoon to read over our office letters to see what matters can be got for our advantage or disadvantage therein. In the evening comes Mr. Pelling and the two men that were with him formerly, the little man that sings so good a base (Wallington) and another that understands well, one Pigott, and Betty Turner come and sat and supped with us, and we spent the evening mighty well in good musique, to my great content to see myself in condition to have these and entertain them for my own pleasure only. So they gone, we to bed.

Tuesday, 1st December 1668

December 1st. Up, and to the office, where sat all the morning, and at noon with my people to dinner, and so to the office, very busy till night, and then home and made my boy read to me Wilkins's Reall Character, which do please me mightily, and so after supper to bed with great pleasure and content with my wife. This day I hear of poor Mr. Clerke, the solicitor, being dead, of a cold, after being not above two days ill, which troubles me mightily, poor man!