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15th. All the morning at the Commissioners of the Navy about getting out my bill for £650 for the last quarter, which I got done with a great deal of ease, which is not common. After that with Mr. Turner to the Dolphin and drunk, and so by water to W. Symons, where D. Scobell with his wife, a pretty and rich woman. Mrs. Symons, a very fine woman, very merry after dinner with marrying of Luellin and D. Scobell's kinswoman that was there. Then to my Lord who told me how the King has given him the place of the great Wardrobe. My Lord resolves to have Sarah again. I to my father's, and then to see my uncle and aunt Fenner. So home and to bed.
15th. My father came and drank his morning draft with me, and sat with me till I was ready, and so he and I about the business of the cloth. By and by I left him and went and dined with my Lady, who, now my Lord is gone, is come to her poor housekeeping again. Then to my father's, who tells me what he has done, and we resolved upon two pieces of scarlet, two of purple, and two of black, and £50 in linen. I home, taking £300 with me home from Alderman Backwell's. After writing to my Lord to let him know what I had done I was going to bed, but there coming the purser of the King's yacht for victualls presently, for the Duke of York is to go down to-morrow, I got him to promise stowage for these things there, and so I went to bed, bidding Will go and fetch the things from the carrier's hither, which about 12 o'clock were brought to my house and laid there all night.
15th (Lord's day). To church in the morning and home to dinner, where come my brother Tom and Mr. Fisher, my cozen, Nan Pepys's second husband, who, I perceive, is a very good-humoured man, an old cavalier. I made as much of him as I could, and were merry, and am glad she hath light of so good a man. They gone, to church again; but my wife not being dressed as I would have her, I was angry, and she, when she was out of doors in her way to church, returned home again vexed. But I to church, Mr. Mills, an ordinary sermon. So home, and found my wife and Sarah gone to a neighbour church, at which I was not much displeased. By and by she comes again, and, after a word or two, good friends. And then her brother came to see her, and he being gone she told me that she believed he was married and had a wife worth £500 to him, and did inquire how he might dispose the money to the best advantage, but I forbore to advise her till she could certainly tell me how things are with him, being loth to meddle too soon with him. So to walk upon the leads, and to supper, and to bed.
15th. Up betimes, and anon my wife rose and did give me her keys, and put other things in order and herself against going this morning into the country. I was forced to go to Thames Street and strike up a bargain for some tarr, to prevent being abused therein by Hill, who was with me this morning, and is mightily surprised that I should tell him what I can have the same tarr with his for. Thence home, but finding my wife gone, I took coach and after her to her inn, where I am troubled to see her forced to sit in the back of the coach, though pleased to see her company none but women and one parson; she I find is troubled at all, and I seemed to make a promise to get a horse and ride after them; and so, kissing her often, and Ashwell once, I bid them adieu. So home by coach, and thence by water to Deptford to the Trinity House, where I came a little late; but I found them reading their charter, which they did like fools, only reading here and there a bit, whereas they ought to do it all, every word, and then proceeded to the election of a maister, which was Sir W. Batten, without any control, who made a heavy, short speech to them, moving them to give thanks to the late Maister for his pains, which he said was very great, and giving them thanks for their choice of him, wherein he would serve them to the best of his power. Then to the choice of their assistants and wardens, and so rose. I might have received 2s. 6d. as a younger Brother, but I directed one of the servants of the House to receive it and keep it. Thence to church, where Dr. Britton preached a sermon full of words against the Nonconformists, but no great matter in it, nor proper for the day at all. His text was, "With one mind and one mouth give glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ." That done, by water, I in the barge with the Maister, to the Trinity House at London; where, among others, I found my Lords Sandwich and Craven, and my cousin Roger Pepys, and Sir Wm. Wheeler. Anon we sat down to dinner, which was very great, as they always have. Great variety of talk. Mr. Prin, among many, had a pretty tale of one that brought in a bill in parliament for the empowering him to dispose his land to such children as he should have that should bear the name of his wife. It was in Queen Elizabeth's time. One replied that there are many species of creatures where the male gives the denomination to both sexes, as swan and woodcock, but not above one where the female do, and that is a goose. Both at and after dinner we had great discourses of the nature and power of spirits, and whether they can animate dead bodies; in all which, as of the general appearance of spirits, my Lord Sandwich is very scepticall. He says the greatest warrants that ever he had to believe any, is the present appearing of the DevilIn 1664, there being a generall report all over the kingdom of Mr. Monpesson his house being haunted, which hee himself affirming to the King and Queene to be true, the King sent the Lord Falmouth, and the Queene sent mee, to examine the truth of; but wee could neither see nor heare anything that was extraordinary; and about a year after, his Majesty told me that hee had discovered the cheat, and that Mr. Monpesson, upon his Majesty sending for him, confessed it to him. And yet Mr. Monpesson, in a printed letter, had afterwards the confidence to deny that hee had ever made any such confession" ("Letters of the Second Earl of Chesterfield," p. 24, 1829, 8vo.). Joseph Glanville published a relation of the famous disturbance at the house of Mr. Monpesson, at Tedworth, Wilts, occasioned by the beating of an invisible drum every night for a year. This story, which was believed at the time, furnished the plot for Addison's play of "The Drummer," or the "Haunted House." In the "Mercurius Publicus," April 16-23, 1663, there is a curious examination on this subject, by which it appears that one William Drury, of Uscut, Wilts, was the invisible drummer.--B.
in Wiltshire, much of late talked of, who beats a drum up and down. There are books of it, and, they say, very true; but my Lord observes, that though he do answer to any tune that you will play to him upon another drum, yet one tune he tried to play and could not; which makes him suspect the whole; and I think it is a good argument. Sometimes they talked of handsome women, and Sir J. Minnes saying that there was no beauty like what he sees in the country-markets, and specially at Bury, in which I will agree with him that there is a prettiest women I ever saw. My Lord replied thus: "Sir John, what do you think of your neighbour's wife?" looking upon me. "Do you not think that he hath a great beauty to his wife? Upon my word he hath." Which I was not a little proud of. Thence by barge with my Lord to Blackfriars, where we landed and I thence walked home, where vexed to find my boy (whom I boxed at his coming for it) and Will abroad, though he was but upon Tower Hill a very little while. My head akeing with the healths I was forced to drink to-day I sent for the barber, and he having done, I up to my wife's closett, and there played on my viallin a good while, and without supper anon to bed, sad for want of my wife, whom I love with all my heart, though of late she has given me some troubled thoughts.
15th. Up and by appointment with Captain Witham (the Captain that brought the newes of the disaster at Tangier, where my Lord Tiviott was slain) and Mr. Tooker to Beares Quay, and there saw and more afterward at the several grannarys several parcels of oates, and strange it is to hear how it will heat itself if laid up green and not often turned. We came not to any agreement, but did cheapen several parcels, and thence away, promising to send again to them. So to the Victualling office, and then home. And in our garden I got Captain Witham to tell me the whole story of my Lord Tiviott's misfortune; for he was upon the guard with his horse neare the towne, when at a distance he saw the enemy appear upon a hill, a mile and a half off, and made up to them, and with much ado escaped himself; but what became of my Lord he neither knows nor thinks that any body but the enemy can tell. Our losse was about four hundred. But he tells me that the greater wonder is that my Lord Tiviott met no sooner with such a disaster; for every day he did commit himself to more probable danger than this, for now he had the assurance of all his scouts that there was no enemy thereabouts; whereas he used every day to go out with two or three with him, to make his discoveries, in greater danger, and yet the man that could not endure to have anybody else to go a step out of order to endanger himself. He concludes him to be the man of the hardest fate to lose so much honour at one blow that ever was. His relation being done he parted; and so I home to look after things for dinner. And anon at noon comes Mr. Creed by chance, and by and by the three young ladies:--Lord Sandwich's daughters.
--and very merry we were with our pasty, very well baked; and a good dish of roasted chickens; pease, lobsters, strawberries. And after dinner to cards: and about five o'clock, by water down to Greenwich; and up to the top of the hill, and there played upon the ground at cards. And so to the Cherry Garden, and then by water singing finely to the Bridge, and there landed; and so took boat again, and to Somersett House. And by this time, the tide being against us, it was past ten of the clock; and such a troublesome passage, in regard of my Lady Paulina's fearfullness, that in all my life I never did see any poor wretch in that condition. Being come hither, there waited for them their coach; but it being so late, I doubted what to do how to get them home. After half an hour's stay in the street, I sent my wife home by coach with Mr. Creed's boy; and myself and Creed in the coach home with them. But, Lord! the fear that my Lady Paulina was in every step of the way; and indeed at this time of the night it was no safe thing to go that road; so that I was even afeard myself, though I appeared otherwise.--We came safe, however, to their house, where all were abed; we knocked them up, my Lady and all the family being in bed. So put them into doors; and leaving them with the mayds, bade them good night, and then into the towne, Creed and I, it being about twelve o'clock and past; and to several houses, inns, but could get no lodging, all being in bed. At the last house, at last, we found some people drinking and roaring; and there got in, and after drinking, got an ill bed, where
15th. Up, and put on my new stuff suit with close knees, which becomes me most nobly, as my wife says. At the office all day. At noon, put on my first laced band, all lace; and to Kate Joyce's to dinner, where my mother, wife, and abundance of their friends, and good usage. Thence, wife and Mercer and I to the Old Exchange, and there bought two lace bands more, one of my semstresse, whom my wife concurs with me to be a pretty woman. So down to Deptford and Woolwich, my boy and I. At Woolwich, discoursed with Mr. Sheldon about my bringing my wife down for a month or two to his house, which he approves of, and, I think, will be very convenient. So late back, and to the office, wrote letters, and so home to supper and to bed. This day the Newes book upon Mr. Moore's showing L'Estrange"The Public Intelligencer," published by Roger L'Estrange, the predecessor of the "London Gazette."
(Captain Ferrers's letter) did do my Lord Sandwich great right as to the late victory. The Duke of Yorke not yet come to towne. The towne grows very sickly, and people to be afeard of it; there dying this last week of the plague 112, from 43 the week before, whereof butone
in Fanchurch-streete, and one in Broad-streete, by the Treasurer's office.
15th. Up betimes, and to my Journall entries, but disturbed by many businesses, among others by Mr. Houblon's coming to me about evening their freight for Tangier, which I did, and then Mr. Bland, who presented me yesterday with a very fine African mat, to lay upon the ground under a bed of state, being the first fruits of our peace with Guyland. So to the office, and thither come my pretty widow Mrs. Burrows, poor woman, to get her ticket paid for her husband's service, which I did her myself, and did 'baisser her moucher', and I do hope may thereafter have some day 'sa' company. Thence to Westminster to the Exchequer, but could not persuade the blockheaded fellows to do what I desire, of breaking my great tallys into less, notwithstanding my Lord Treasurer's order, which vexedme
so much that I would not bestow more time and trouble among a company of dunces, and so back again home, and to dinner, whither Creed come and dined with me and after dinner Mr. Moore, and he and I abroad, thinking to go down the river together, but the tide being against me would not, but returned and walked an houre in the garden, but, Lord! to hear how he pleases himself in behalf of my Lord Sandwich, in the miscarriage of the Duke of Albemarle, and do inveigh against Sir W. Coventry as a cunning knave, but I thinke that without any manner of reason at all, but only his passion. He being gone I to my chamber at home to set my Journall right and so to settle my Tangier accounts, which I did in very good order, and then in the evening comes Mr. Yeabsly to reckon with me, which I did also, and have above £200 profit therein to myself, which is a great blessing, the God of heaven make me thankfull for it. That being done, and my eyes beginning to be sore with overmuch writing, I to supper and to bed.
15th. All the morning at the office. No newes more than last night; only Purser Tyler comes and tells me that he being at all the passages in this business at Chatham, he says there have been horrible miscarriages, such as we shall shortly hear of: that the want of boats hath undone us; and it is commonly said, and Sir J. Minnes under his hand tells us, that they were employed by the men of the Yard to carry away their goods; and I hear that Commissioner Pett will be found the first man that began to remove; he is much spoken against, and Bruncker is complained of and reproached for discharging the men of the great ships heretofore. At noon Mr. Hater dined with me; and tells me he believes that it will hardly be the want of money alone that will excuse to the Parliament the neglect of not setting out a fleete, it having never been done in our greatest straits, but however unlikely it appeared, yet when it was gone about, the State or King did compass it; and there is something in it. In like manner all the afternoon busy, vexed to see how slowly things go on for want of money. At night comes, unexpectedly so soon, Mr. Gibson, who left my wife well, and all got down well with them, but not with himself, which I was afeard of, and cannot blame him, but must myself be wiser against another time. He had one of his bags broke, through his breeches, and some pieces dropped out, not many, he thinks, but two, for he 'light, and took them up, and went back and could find no more. But I am not able to tell how many, which troubles me, but the joy of having the greatest part safe there makes me bear with it, so as not to afflict myself for it. This afternoon poor Betty Michell, whom I love, sent to tell my wife her child was dying, which I am troubled for, poor girle! At night home and to my flageolet. Played with pleasure, but with a heavy heart, only it pleased me to think how it may please God I may live to spend my time in the country with plainness and pleasure, though but with little glory. So to supper and to bed.
15th (Monday). Up, and with Mr. Butts to look into the baths, and find the King and Queen's full of a mixed sort, of good and bad, and the Cross only almost for the gentry. So home and did the like with my wife, and did pay my guides, two women, 5s.; one man, 2s. 6d.; poor, 6d.; woman to lay my foot-cloth, 1s. So to our inne, and there eat and paid reckoning, £1 8s. 6d.; servants, 3s.; poor, 1s.; lent the coach man, 10s. Before I took coach, I went to make a boy dive in the King's bath, 1s. I paid also for my coach and a horse to Bristol, £1 1s. 6d. Took coach, and away, without any of the company of the other stage-coaches, that go out of this town to-day; and rode all day with some trouble, for fear of being out of our way, over the Downes, where the life of the shepherds is, in fair weather only, pretty. In the afternoon come to Abebury, where, seeing great stones like those of Stonage standing up, I stopped, and took a countryman of that town, and he carried me and shewed me a place trenched in, like Old Sarum almost, with great stones pitched in it, some bigger than those at Stonage in figure, to my great admiration: and he told me that most people of learning, coming by, do come and view them, and that the King did so: and that the Mount cast hard by is called Selbury, from one King Seall buried there, as tradition says. I did give this man 1s. So took coach again, seeing one place with great high stones pitched round, which, I believe, was once some particular building, in some measure like that of Stonage. But, about a mile off, it was prodigious to see how full the Downes are of great stones; and all along the vallies, stones of considerable bigness, most of them growing certainly out of the ground so thick as to cover the ground, which makes me think the less of the wonder of Stonage, for hence they might undoubtedly supply themselves with stones, as well as those at Abebury. In my way did give to the poor and menders of the highway 3s. Before night, come to Marlborough, and lay at the Hart; a good house, and a pretty fair town for a street or two; and what is most singular is, their houses on one side having their pent-houses supported with pillars, which makes it a good walk. My wife pleased with all, this evening reading of "Mustapha" to me till supper, and then to supper, and had musique whose innocence pleased me, and I did give them 3s. So to bed, and lay well all night, and long, so as all the five coaches that come this day from Bath, as well as we, were gone out of the town before six.