Annotations and comments

Tonyel has posted 102 annotations/comments since 11 March 2013.

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About Friday 18 March 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link

In Ireland there are burial grounds divided by a wall to keep Protestants away from Catholics (and vice versa). Some walls are said to be six feet deep in the ground just to make sure !

About Monday 14 March 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link

" money or something worse she knows not, but there is one Cranburne, I think she called him, in Fleete Lane with whom he hath many times been mighty private, but what their dealings have been she knows not, but believes these were naught,"

Is it possible that poor Tom was secretly homosexual? It might account for some of his problems and also for Sam's fear of embarrassment. What, if anything, was the attitude to homosexuality in those times? Was it even admitted? I have read somewhere that Queen Victoria later signed an Act to make it illegal but refused to include lesbianism as she did not believe that women could do that sort of thing.

About Tuesday 23 February 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link


Much sooner than that, his patron, protector and relative Sandwich will slip down the greasy pole leaving Sam to feel exposed and looking for new alliances. No job security in those days.

About Wednesday 17 February 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link

Even today, in Long Acre, you can nip into a tiny alley between the large buildings and find yourself in a warren. I imagine Elizabeth's folks were living in one of the alley tenements, not on the main street.

About Friday 12 February 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link

"Says he after all, well, says he......."
This suddenly brings the conversation to life, accompanied no doubt by a wagging finger.

About Thursday 11 February 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link

"my wife and I hand to fist to a very fine pig."

Can it be that, in addition to modernising the King's navy, our hero invented pulled pork?

About Thursday 14 January 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link

Sarah, the Comptroller was Minnes who, in Sam's view, was incompetent but would not allow anyone else to take on his duties (often a sign of incompetence in my experience).
Batten was corrupt like many others but appears to have been clumsily corrupt which was more of a sin in those days.

About Saturday 9 January 1663/64

Tonyel  •  Link

"calling for Walsingham’s Manuals at my bookseller’s to read but not to buy"

Is this an early form of library system or did he just stand in the shop reading the book to the irritation of the shopkeeper? Of course he is a regular customer, so perhaps that would be acceptable behaviour.

Re Robert Gertz's query: I believe the jury is still out on Marlowe's death but, in any case, this is a different Walsingham.

About Saturday 26 December 1663

Tonyel  •  Link

" I did still within me resolve to make the King one way or other pay for them, though I saved it to him another way, "

I remember the justification well: I've saved my employers several hundred pounds by my efficiency - they (and God) could hardly object to my spending ten on a little treat for myself.

About Monday 21 December 1663

Tonyel  •  Link

" but the common rule is, that though a cock neither runs nor dies, yet if any man will bet 10l. to a crowne, and nobody take the bet, the game is given over, and not sooner."
10l. to a crown is odds of 40 to 1 - a suspiciously confident bet on a 'two-horse' race. Do I read this right or am I missing something?