So to my office, where till towards noon, and then to the Exchange, and back home to dinner, where Mrs. Hunt [L&M say “Mr Hunt” P.G.], my father, and W. Stankes; but, Lord! what a stir Stankes makes with his being crowded in the streets and wearied in walking in London, and would not be wooed by my wife and Ashwell to go to a play, nor to White Hall, or to see the lyons,1 though he was carried in a coach. I never could have thought there had been upon earth a man so little curious in the world as he is.
A new diary entry appears here at the end of each day.
Up betimes, and after having at my office settled some accounts for my Lord Sandwich, I went forth, and taking up my father at my brother’s, took coach and towards Chelsey, ‘lighting at an alehouse near the Gatehouse at Westminster to drink our morning draught, and so up again and to Chelsey, where we found my Lord all alone at a little table with one joynt of meat at dinner; we sat down and very merry talking, and mightily extolling the manner of his retirement, and the goodness of his diet, which indeed is so finely dressed: the mistress of the house, Mrs. Becke, having been a woman of good condition heretofore, a merchant’s wife, and hath all things most excellently dressed; among others, her cakes admirable, and so good that my Lord’s words were, they were fit to present to my Lady Castlemaine.
From ordinary discourse my Lord fell to talk of other matters to me, of which chiefly the second part of the fray, which he told me a little while since of, between Mr. Edward Montagu and himself, which is that after that he had since been with him three times and no notice taken at all of any difference between them, and yet since that he hath forborn coming to him almost two months, and do speak not only slightly of my Lord every where, but hath complained to my Lord Chancellor of him, and arrogated all that ever my Lord hath done to be only by his direction and persuasion. Whether he hath done the like to the King or no, my Lord knows not; but my Lord hath been with the King since, and finds all things fair; and my Lord Chancellor hath told him of it, but with so much contempt of Mr. Montagu, as my Lord knows himself very secure against any thing the fool can do; and notwithstanding all this, so noble is his nature, that he professes himself ready to show kindness and pity to Mr. Montagu on any occasion.
My Lord told me of his presenting Sir H. Bennet with a gold cupp of 100l., which he refuses, with a compliment; but my Lord would have been glad he had taken it, that he might have had some obligations upon him which he thinks possible the other may refuse to prevent it; not that he hath any reason to doubt his kindness. But I perceive great differences there are at Court; and Sir H. Bennet and my Lord Bristol, and their faction, are likely to carry all things before them (which my Lord’s judgment is, will not be for the best), and particularly against the Chancellor, who, he tells me, is irrecoverably lost: but, however, that he will not actually joyne in anything against the Chancellor, whom he do own to be his most sure friend, and to have been his greatest; and therefore will not openly act in either, but passively carry himself even.
The Queen, my Lord tells me, he thinks he hath incurred some displeasure with, for his kindness to his neighbour, my Lady Castlemaine. My Lord tells me he hath no reason to fall for her sake, whose wit, management, nor interest, is not likely to hold up any man, and therefore he thinks it not his obligation to stand for her against his own interest.
The Duke and Mr. Coventry my Lord says he is very well with, and fears not but they will show themselves his very good friends, specially at this time, he being able to serve them, and they needing him, which he did not tell me wherein.
Talking of the business of Tangier, he tells me that my Lord Tiviott is gone away without the least respect paid to him, nor indeed to any man, but without his commission; and (if it be true what he says) having laid out seven or eight thousand pounds in commodities for the place; and besides having not only disobliged all the Commissioners for Tangier, but also Sir Charles Barkeley the other day, who, speaking in behalf of Colonel Fitz-Gerald, that having been deputy-governor there already, he ought to have expected and had the governorship upon the death or removal of the former governor. And whereas it is said that he and his men are Irish, which is indeed the main thing that hath moved the King and Council to put in Tiviott to prevent the Irish having too great and the whole command there under Fitz-Gerald; he further said that there was never an Englishman fit to command Tangier; my Lord Tiviott answered yes, that there were many more fit than himself or Fitz-Gerald either. So that Fitz-Gerald being so great with the Duke of York, and being already made deputy-governor, independent of my Lord Tiviott, and he being also left here behind him for a while, my Lord Sandwich do think that, putting all these things together, the few friends he hath left, and the ill posture of his affairs, my Lord Tiviott is not a man of the conduct and management that either people take him to be, or is fit for the command of the place.
And here, speaking of the Duke of York and Sir Charles Barkeley, my Lord tells me that he do very much admire the good management, and discretion, and nobleness of the Duke, that whatever he may be led by him or Mr. Coventry singly in private, yet he did not observe that in publique matters, but he did give as ready hearing and as good acceptance to any reasons offered by any other man against the opinions of them, as he did to them, and would concur in the prosecution of it. Then we came to discourse upon his own sea accompts, and came to a resolution what and how to proceed in them; wherein he resolved, though I offered him a way of evading the greatest part of his debt honestly, by making himself debtor to the Parliament, before the King’s time, which he might justly do, yet he resolved to go openly and nakedly in it, and put himself to the kindness of the King and Duke, which humour, I must confess, and so did tell him (with which he was not a little pleased) had thriven very well with him, being known to be a man of candid and open dealing, without any private tricks or hidden designs as other men commonly have in what they do.
From that we had discourse of Sir G. Carteret, who he finds kind to him, but it may be a little envious, and most other men are, and of many others; and upon the whole do find that it is a troublesome thing for a man of any condition at Court to carry himself even, and without contracting enemys or envyers; and that much discretion and dissimulation is necessary to do it. My father staid a good while at the window and then sat down by himself while my Lord and I were thus an hour together or two after dinner discoursing, and by and by he took his leave, and told me he would stay below for me.
Anon I took leave, and coming down found my father unexpectedly in great pain and desiring for God’s sake to get him a bed to lie upon, which I did, and W. Howe and I staid by him, in so great pain as I never saw, poor wretch, and with that patience, crying only: Terrible, terrible pain, God help me, God help me, with the mournful voice, that made my heart ake. He desired to rest a little alone to see whether it would abate, and W. Howe and I went down and walked in the gardens, which are very fine, and a pretty fountayne, with which I was finely wetted, and up to a banquetting house, with a very fine prospect, and so back to my father, who I found in such pain that I could not bear the sight of it without weeping, never thinking that I should be able to get him from thence, but at last, finding it like to continue, I got him to go to the coach, with great pain, and driving hard, he all the while in a most unsufferable torment (meeting in the way with Captain Ferrers going to my Lord, to tell him that my Lady Jemimah is come to town, and that Will Stankes is come with my father’s horses), not staying the coach to speak with any body, but once, in St. Paul’s Churchyard, we were forced to stay, the jogging and pain making my father vomit, which it never had done before. At last we got home, and all helping him we got him to bed presently, and after half an hour’s lying in his naked bed (it being a rupture [with] which he is troubled, and has been this 20 years, but never in half the pain and with so great swelling as now, and how this came but by drinking of cold small beer and sitting long upon a low stool and then standing long after it he cannot tell) … —[We are not going to be told the treatment. D.W.]— After which he was at good ease, and so continued, and so fell to sleep, and we went down whither W. Stankes was come with his horses. But it is very pleasant to hear how he rails at the rumbling and ado that is in London over it is in the country, that he cannot endure it.
He supped with us, and very merry, and then he to his lodgings at the Inne with the horses, and so we to bed, I to my father who is very well again, and both slept very well.
Up betimes and to my office, and there all the morning, only stepped up to see my wife and her dancing master at it, and I think after all she will do pretty well at it. So to dinner, Mr. Hunt dining with us, and so to the office, where we sat late, and then I to my office casting up my Lord’s sea accounts over again, and putting them in order for payment, and so home to supper and to bed.
Up betimes and to my office, where doing business alone a good while till people came about business to me.
Will Griffin tells me this morning that Captain Browne, Sir W. Batten’s brother-in-law, is dead of a blow given him two days ago by a seaman, a servant of his, being drunk, with a stone striking him on the forehead, for which I am sorry, he having a good woman and several small children.
At the office all the morning, at noon dined at home with my wife, merry, and after dinner by water to White Hall; but found the Duke of York gone to St. James’s for this summer; and thence with Mr. Coventry, to whose chamber I went, and Sir W. Pen up to the Duke’s closett. And a good while with him about our Navy business; and so I to White Hall, and there alone a while with my Lord Sandwich discoursing about his debt to the Navy, wherein he hath given me some things to resolve him in. Thence to my Lord’s lodging, and thither came Creed to me, and he and I walked a great while in the garden, and thence to an alehouse in the market place to drink fine Lambeth ale, and so to Westminster Hall, and after walking there a great while, home by coach, where I found Mary gone from my wife, she being too high for her, though a very good servant, and my boy too will be going in a few days, for he is not for my family, he is grown so out of order and not to be ruled, and do himself, against his brother’s counsel, desire to be gone, which I am sorry for, because I love the boy and would be glad to bring him to good.
At home with my wife and Ashwell talking of her going into the country this year, wherein we had like to have fallen out, she thinking that I have a design to have her go, which I have not, and to let her stay here I perceive will not be convenient, for she expects more pleasure than I can give her here, and I fear I have done very ill in letting her begin to learn to dance.
The Queen (which I did not know) it seems was at Windsor, at the late St. George’s feast there; and the Duke of Monmouth dancing with her with his hat in his hand, the King came in and kissed him, and made him put on his hat, which every body took notice of.
(Lord’s-day). Lay pretty long in bed talking with my wife, and then up and set to the making up of my monthly accounts, but Tom coming, with whom I was angry for botching my camlott coat, to tell me that my father and he would dine with me, and that my father was at our church, I got me ready and had a very good sermon of a country minister upon “How blessed a thing it is for brethren to live together in unity!” So home and all to dinner, and then would have gone by coach to have seen my Lord Sandwich at Chelsey if the man would have taken us, but he denying it we staid at home, and I all the afternoon upon my accounts, and find myself worth full 700l., for which I bless God, it being the most I was ever yet worth in money.
In the evening (my father being gone to my brother’s to lie to-night) my wife, Ashwell, and the boy and I, and the dogg, over the water and walked to Half-way house, and beyond into the fields, gathering of cowslipps, and so to Half-way house, with some cold lamb we carried with us, and there supped, and had a most pleasant walk back again, Ashwell all along telling us some parts of their mask at Chelsey School, which was very pretty, and I find she hath a most prodigious memory, remembering so much of things acted six or seven years ago.
So home, and after reading my vows, being sleepy, without prayers to bed, for which God forgive me!
Up betimes and to my vyall and song book a pretty while, and so to my office, and there we sat all the morning. Among other things Sir W. Batten had a mind to cause Butler (our chief witness in the business of Field, whom we did force back from an employment going to sea to come back to attend our law sute) to be borne as a mate on the Rainbow in the Downes in compensation for his loss for our sakes. This he orders an order to be drawn by Mr. Turner for, and after Sir J. Minnes, Sir W. Batten, and Sir W. Pen had signed it, it came to me and I was going to put it up into my book, thinking to consider of it and give them my opinion upon it before I parted with it, but Sir W. Pen told me I must sign it or give it him again, for it should not go without my hand. I told him what I meant to do, whereupon Sir W. Batten was very angry, and in a great heat (which will bring out any thing which he has in his mind, and I am glad of it, though it is base in him to have a thing so long in his mind without speaking of it, though I am glad this is the worst, for if he had worse it would out as well as this some time or other) told me that I should not think as I have heretofore done, make them sign orders and not sign them myself. Which what ignorance or worse it implies is easy to judge, when he shall sign to things (and the rest of the board too as appears in this business) for company and not out of their judgment for. After some discourse I did convince them that it was not fit to have it go, and Sir W. Batten first, and then the rest, did willingly cancel all their hands and tear the order, for I told them, Butler being such a rogue as I know him, and we have all signed him to be to the Duke, it will be in his power to publish this to our great reproach, that we should take such a course as this to serve ourselves in wronging the King by putting him into a place he is no wise capable of, and that in an Admiral ship.
At noon we rose, Sir W. Batten ashamed and vexed, and so home to dinner, and after dinner walked to the old Exchange and so all along to Westminster Hall, White Hall, my Lord Sandwich’s lodgings, and going by water back to the Temple did pay my debts in several places in order to my examining my accounts tomorrow to my great content. So in the evening home, and after supper (my father at my brother’s) and merrily practising to dance, which my wife hath begun to learn this day of Mr. Pembleton, but I fear will hardly do any great good at it, because she is conceited that she do well already, though I think no such thing.
So to bed.
At Westminster Hall, this day, I buy a book lately printed and licensed by Dr. Stradling, the Bishop of London’s chaplin, being a book discovering the practices and designs of the papists, and the fears of some of our own fathers of the Protestant church heretofore of the return to Popery as it were prefacing it.
The book is a very good book; but forasmuch as it touches one of the Queenmother’s fathers confessors, the Bishop, which troubles many good men and members of Parliament, hath called it in, which I am sorry for.
Another book I bought, being a collection of many expressions of the great Presbyterian Preachers upon publique occasions, in the late times, against the King and his party, as some of Mr. Marshall, Case, Calamy, Baxter, &c., which is good reading now, to see what they then did teach, and the people believe, and what they would seem to believe now.
Lastly, I did hear that the Queen is much grieved of late at the King’s neglecting her, he having not supped once with her this quarter of a year, and almost every night with my Lady Castlemaine; who hath been with him this St. George’s feast at Windsor, and came home with him last night; and, which is more, they say is removed as to her bed from her own home to a chamber in White Hall, next to the King’s own; which I am sorry to hear, though I love her much.
Up betimes, and with my salt eel went down in the parler and there got my boy and did beat him till I was fain to take breath two or three times, yet for all I am afeard it will make the boy never the better, he is grown so hardened in his tricks, which I am sorry for, he being capable of making a brave man, and is a boy that I and my wife love very well. So made me ready, and to my office, where all the morning, and at noon home, whither came Captain Holland, who is lately come home from sea, and has been much harassed in law about the ship which he has bought, so that it seems in a despair he endeavoured to cut his own throat, but is recovered it; and it seems whether by that or any other persuasion (his wife’s mother being a great zealot) he is turned almost a Quaker, his discourse being nothing but holy, and that impertinent, that I was weary of him. At last pretending to go to the Change we walked thither together, and there I left him and home to dinner, sending my boy by the way to enquire after two dancing masters at our end of the town for my wife to learn, of whose names the boy brought word.
After dinner all the afternoon fiddling upon my viallin (which I have not done many a day) while Ashwell danced above in my upper best chamber, which is a rare room for musique, expecting this afternoon my wife to bring my cozen Scott and Stradwick, but they came not, and so in the evening we by ourselves to Half-way house to walk, but did not go in there, but only a walk and so home again and to supper, my father with us, and had a good lobster intended for part of our entertainment to these people to-day, and so to cards, and then to bed, being the first day that I have spent so much to my pleasure a great while.