Sunday 1 January 1659/60

Blessed be God, at the end of the last year I was in very good health, without any sense of my old pain, but upon taking of cold.1

I lived in Axe Yard having my wife, and servant Jane, and no more in family than us three.

My wife … gave me hopes of her being with child, but on the last day of the year … [the hope was belied.]2 The condition of the State was thus; viz. the Rump, after being disturbed by my Lord Lambert, was lately returned to sit again. The officers of the Army all forced to yield. Lawson lies still in the river, and Monk is with his army in Scotland. Only my Lord Lambert is not yet come into the Parliament, nor is it expected that he will without being forced to it.

The new Common Council of the City do speak very high; and had sent to Monk their sword-bearer, to acquaint him with their desires for a free and full Parliament, which is at present the desires, and the hopes, and expectation of all. Twenty-two of the old secluded members3 having been at the House-door the last week to demand entrance, but it was denied them; and it is believed that [neither] they nor the people will be satisfied till the House be filled.

My own private condition very handsome, and esteemed rich, but indeed very poor; besides my goods of my house, and my office, which at present is somewhat uncertain. Mr. Downing master of my office.

(Lord’s Day) This morning (we living lately in the garret) I rose, put on my suit with great skirts, having not lately worn any other, clothes but them.

Went to Mr. Gunning’s chapel at Exeter House, where he made a very good sermon upon these words: — “That in the fulness of time God sent his Son, made of a woman,” &c.; showing, that, by “made under the law,” is meant his circumcision, which is solemnized this day.

Dined at home in the garret, where my wife dressed the remains of a turkey, and in the doing of it she burned her hand.

I staid at home all the afternoon, looking over my accounts.

Then went with my wife to my father’s, and in going observed the great posts which the City have set up at the Conduit in Fleet-street.

Supt at my, father’s, where in came Mrs. The. Turner and Madam Morrice, and supt with us. After that my wife and I went home with them, and so to our own home.

The year did not legally begin in England before the 25th March until the act for altering the style fixed the 1st of January as the first day of the year, and previous to 1752 the year extended from March 25th to the following March 24th. Thus since 1752 we have been in the habit of putting the two dates for the months of January and February and March 1 to 24 — in all years previous to 1752. Practically, however, many persons considered the year to commence with January 1st, as it will be seen Pepys did. The 1st of January was considered as New Year’s day long before Pepys’s time. The fiscal year has not been altered; and the national accounts are still reckoned from old Lady Day, which falls on the 6th of April.

  1. Pepys was successfully cut for the stone on March 26th, 1658. See March 26th below. Although not suffering from this cause again until the end of his life, there are frequent references in the Diary to pain whenever he caught cold. In a letter from Pepys to his nephew Jackson, April 8th, 1700, there is a reference to the breaking out three years before his death of the wound caused by the cutting for the stone: “It has been my calamity for much the greatest part of this time to have been kept bedrid, under an evil so rarely known as to have had it matter of universal surprise and with little less general opinion of its dangerousness; namely, that the cicatrice of a wound occasioned upon my cutting for the stone, without hearing anything of it in all this time, should after more than 40 years’ perfect cure, break out again.” At the post-mortem examination a nest of seven stones, weighing four and a half ounces, was found in the left kidney, which was entirely ulcerated.
  2. This is the first of too many censored passages marked by “…” wherin Mr. Wheatly determines (in this unabridged edition) that some of the words of Pepy’s are too raw for our eyes. D.W.
  3. “The City sent and invited him [Monk] to dine the next day at Guildhall, and there he declared for the members whom the army had forced away in year forty-seven and forty-eight, who were known by the names of secluded members.” — Burnet’s Hist. of his Own Time, book i.

56 Annotations

nick sweeney   Link to this

Why does Pepys begin with reference to the 'condition of the State'? With good reason: England was facing its biggest political crisis since the execution of Charles I. Oliver Cromwell had died in 1658, and his son Richard's attempt to sustain the Protectorate had collapsed within months. Cromwell jr. had recalled the Rump parliament in 1659, before resigning as Lord Protector. However, the republican John Lambert dissolved the Rump in September of that year, following the example of Cromwell during the Civil War. Other parliamentarians called upon the country's generals to defend Parliament; one of those generals was Mon(c)k. Cromwell's commander in Scotland, who declared his support for the Rump, and rebutted Lambert's military challenge.

However, with these competing factions offering little likelihood of political stability in England, rumours were rife of a radical solution, with Monck as its instigator...

nick sweeney   Link to this

Had Pepys idly surveyed the pews at Exeter House chapel (now the site of the Lyceum Theatre) he'd have seen that other great diarist, John Evelyn, who recorded it thus: "Begging Gods blessing for the following Yeare, I went to Excester Chapell, where Mr. Gunning began the Yeare on 4: Gal: from 3. to 7th shewing the Love of Christ in sheding his bloud so early for us..." Small world. (And yes, Pepys' boss, Sir George Downing, subsequently gave his name to the most famous street in London...)

Phil   Link to this

Thanks for the wonderful info Nick. I added the location of Exeter House to the list of places for which I have locations, so it should now always be a link in the diary entries (linking to a map). Having added that, I took the liberty of removing your link to Streetmap as that site couldn't find the supplied postcode!

James R. Hannay   Link to this

The diary itself, as well as the rest of Pepys' book collection, is available to the public free of charge at:

The Pepys Library
Magdalene College
Cambridge
CB3 0AG

Telephone: (01223) 332115
Fax: (01223) 332187

David Gurliacci   Link to this

Historian Thomas Macaulay gave this description of what fears were called up by the political crisis:

[T]he dangers which threatened the country were such that, in order to avert them, some opinions might well be compromised, and some risks might well be incurred. It seemed but too likely that England would fall under the most odious and degrading of all kinds of government, under a government uniting all the evils of despotism to all of the evils of anarchy. Anything was preferable to the yoke of a succession of incapable and inglorious tyrants, raised to power, like the Deys of Barbary, by military revolutions recurring at short intervals. Lambert seemed likely to be the first of these rulers: but within a year Lambert might give place to Desborough, and Desborough to Harrison. As often as the truncheon was transferred from one feeble hand to another, the nation would be pillaged for the purpose of bestowing a fresh donative on the troops."

-- From Thomas B. Macaulay's History of England From the Accession of James II, Vol. I, Chapter 1 (1848).
(text available from Project Gutenberg)

Herself   Link to this

This is a wonderful thing; thanks for undertaking it. Wondering though why you've chosen an expurgated version, when there are complete editions available.

Phil   Link to this

It's actually the most complete copyright-free version that's available. The only better edition, as far as I know, is the one published in the 1970s which is under copyright.

David Moynihan   Link to this

Might be nice to give a little bit of credit to Dr. David Widger, who went to the trouble of scanning and proofing two versions...

http://ibiblio.org/gutenberg/etext03/sp85g10.txt has the little notice of who scanned it... all the reward a Gutenberg volunteer expects.

Like what you're doing here though.

Listing of all the works Dr. Widger has scanned for Project Gutenberg is available at
http://www.gutenberg.net.au/widger/home.html

Monty Burns   Link to this

It was the best of times, it was the blurst of times.

mark   Link to this

Wow - this is very cool. I've been meaning to read Pepys diary for a while now - this site should mean I'll get round to it.

cheers

Robin   Link to this

I love the reference to eating left-over turkey - I'm doing the same myself today.
How popular was turkey at that time, it must have been a fairly recent introduction?

Jon Rutherford   Link to this

Congratulations on implementing--in a most attractive format--a wonderful idea.

As a long-time journal writer myself, and a retired civil servant, I feel some kinship with Mr. Pepys. His poignant description of the Great Fire remains in my memory as one of the most gripping passages I read in my school years (in high school, in Garden City, Kansas, USA, circa 1956).

Best wishes for this New Year and for your very civilized undertaking!

language hat   Link to this

This is a great idea brilliantly executed. I've always wanted to read the Diary, and this is the perfect way to do it. Perhaps someone with access to a truly complete edition could supply the "..." text in an annotation? Surely quoting a few words falls under fair use.

PhastPhrog   Link to this

There's one in every crowd...
Good luck with the Pepys' project. Looking forward to reading more.
Hopefully you get many more idiots like trainspotter.

PhastPhrog   Link to this

..or better yet: You *don't* get many more idiots. :-)

Michiel   Link to this

Great site, I will try to follow it daily!

Pity though we have to do with the censored version...

Greetings from a Dutchman (who were not very popular with Pepys, as we shal see in six years...)

wiggy   Link to this

Perhaps some helpful scholar could help us all out by using the 1970s edition to annotate back IN whatever got censored OUT from each day's entries in this Victorian edition.

This tactic would be legal as long as the the missing text each day is short - coming under the 'fair use' rules.

Steven   Link to this

As happy a man as any in the world, for the whole world seems to smile upon me!

Mary   Link to this

Cold Turkey

Turkeys were introduced into England about 90 years before the date of this first entry in the diary. In later years they became popular enough for large flocks of them to be raised in East Anglia. These flocks were herded, on foot, to London in the weeks before Christmas, their feet being protected in small, leather boots that were made expressly for the purpose.

Tina Warburton   Link to this

Thanks for this - I'm finally going to read Pepys. Re the copyright problem, as long as the expurgations don't exceed 5% of the total work, you should be covered under fair dealing if they're restored- I think.

Phil   Link to this

Regarding credit to David Widger, who prepared the Project Gutenberg text... He was already credited on http://www.pepysdiary.com/about/ and I have now added a link to his page.

Bob Whaley   Link to this

What a terrific and ambitious project. I wish you great success.

bob geensen   Link to this

a splendid project indeed! I have had the warrington edition in my library for 32 years and shall look forward to a daily "pepys-portion". It is a timely reminder that there are still some civi-lized people around.Thanks from a dutchman living in belgium.

David Brew   Link to this

Wonderful idea, congratulations. Like all good ideas - so simple (afterwards). Looking forward to a daily taste of long ago.

Iain   Link to this

I as many others have think it is a great project and like many others have also wanted to read the diaries. Well done. From a Scot in The Netherlands.

John Morrow   Link to this

This is a wonderful idea: congratulations to all involved with the project. I am curious about Pepys' kidney stone. Is there any information as to where the operation was performed? I realise this took place two year before he started his diary but information may exist elsewhere. I certainly couldn't find any clues in my quite abridged version. As a former employee of Barts Hospital Medical School it ocurred to me that the operation may have taken place on the original hospital site.

me   Link to this

The vast majority of the expurgated remarks have to do with the pain of Pepys' inguinal hernia and the noting of his wife's monthly menstrual cramps. Apparently these two subjects are simply too much for tender sensibilities of Henry B. Wheatley! A pity.

Geoffrey Langlois   Link to this

Thank you. This is a marvellous way to look again at the diaries, a printed edition of which is helping to support my dust collection. This brings back memories of a brief visit to a one-room museum to Pepys and Price Hal in (I think) Fleet Street. I stumbled across it in 1985 or '88 while on an aimless walk and was charmed. You are doing us a wonderful service and we're grateful.

Aaron   Link to this

Thank you. I just heard of your wonderful gift to the online world, and in the best format -- in additon to having newsfeeds available. I'm only a few days behind, must get to it -- after listening to npr's interview.

Paul Miller   Link to this

I am going to try the daily diary readings on this site, who knows maybe I will still be reading ten years from now. I must recommend the biography Samuel Pepys: The Unequalled Self
by Claire Tomalin, an excellent read!

Ian Mathers   Link to this

This seems to be the place to post congratulations and thanks to Phil, so here is where I'll do it. I'm a Canadian university student who had been sort of meaning to get around to Pepys' diary ever since I heard of it, but realistically if not for this site I probably never would have. Naysayers be damned, increased exposure of this work alone is worth the project and format. I can't believe people are actually complaining that this somehow cheapens them. This site gives me more faith in humanity. Kudos.

Scaryduck   Link to this

A fantastic concept, wonderfully executed. This site should show a few bloggers and diarists (myself included) how it should be done.

peter payzant   Link to this

Expurgated text:
The original text, censored by Wheatly, read "she hath them again", according to the edition edited by Latham and Matthews.

language hat   Link to this

More unexpurgation:
Peter, you beat me to it; I got tired of waiting for someone to post the omitted material and went to the library on my lunch hour to find it. But the words you quote mean nothing without the previous omitted text (after "My wife..."), so my trip was not wasted. The first omitted words were: "after the absence of her terms for seven weeks"; i.e., her period was late.

I also noticed that the online text is seriously overedited, with much punctuation and even spelling/usage changed to no evident point. In particular, it's "...and hath sent to Monke" (not "had"), lots of commas have either been omitted or changed to semicolons, and "Morris" has been changed to "Morrice"; furthermore, a comma has been added in an actively confusing place in the first sentence of the second paragraph ("any other, clothes"). Since the last is presumably a scanning glitch, I hope it at least can be fixed in this version, though I don't see why the omitted words couldn't be added as well.

Phil   Link to this

Yes, there are differences between the text on this site and that of the 19070s Latham & Matthews edition (which I assume you looked at). As the http://www.pepysdiary.com/about/ explains, the text on this site comes from the 1893 edition of the diary, which is far from perfect. Latham & Matthews go into some detail about the problems with it. Any problems are not strictly to do with the "online text", but the "1893 text."

Should errors in the 1893 text be corrected before being put online? The only way they could really be corrected is by reference to Pepys' original shorthand -- Latham & Matthews is just another interpretation (albeit far more comprehensive) rather than the One True Text. If I were to correct errors in the 1893 text before posting it online I would have to decide where to draw the line. Do I just add in missing words? Do I correct punctuation? Do I correct obvious spelling errors? Do I research anything that looks like it *might* be a spelling error? Any line drawn would be arbitrary and would create yet another version of the text which, due to lack of time and resources, would not be an entirely satisfactory one.

Therefore I have taken the decision to present the 1893 text exactly as it is on Project Gutenberg, with no alterations other than separating out the footnotes. This makes it clear where the source, and any errors, comes from. Any corrections, clarifications or amendments should be made in the annotations, something everyone is making a wonderful job of! So thank you!

Virginia Hall   Link to this

One of my fifth grade students (who wishes to remain anonymous) showed me this site and we love it!! She heard about it on NPR and we have enjoyed browsing through the diary. We thank you for making this available to the world - old and young alike!!
-Durham, North Carolina

Susanna   Link to this

"my suit with great skirts"

Pepys was apparently following the fashion set by Louis XIV of France for "petticoat breeches". There is an illustration here:

http://www.costumes.org/pages/fashiondress/17th...

Susanna   Link to this

Pepys' Operation

He was cut for the stone by Thomas Holiyer, who was a surgeon at St. Thomas's Hospital. We are told "it came out intact, the size of a tennis ball. The proud (and lucky!) survivor had it set in a case, which cost him twenty-four shillings." (Roy Porter, The Greatest Benefit to Mankind: A Medical History of Mankind) He may have survived because he was first on the day's list to be operated on (so the surgeon's tools and hands were relatively clean), and because the operation was done not at the hospital but at the home of a relative. The incision was about 3 inches long and the extraction took less than a minute. (Liza Picard, Restoration London)

Rich Merne   Link to this

I am fascinated by the insight into medieval times which Pepys'writings give. In particular it brings me to mind of the state of, and methods of medical proceedures etc. at the time. Anaesthetic !!, sutures(internal)!!. I'd love to know more about these and other aspects of life then. Also I am very curious if there are as yet unpublished passages (censured etc.)

Mary   Link to this

MEDIAEVAL? Hardly!

Rich Merne   Link to this

Sorry Mary, a momentary slip due to the fact that I had just before been dredging older stuff. I twigged it too late just as I had it posted, thanks anyway.

Brooke   Link to this

Scurvy?

The notes add that Sam's wound reopened decades later. This is, I've read, characteristic of SCURVY. In severe cases, long-healed and decades-old scars would reopen, as if the wound had just occurred. I've come to this diary a little late for responses--but are there any notes on this?

It makes me highly suspicious that Sam wasn't taking his one-a-day and was neglecting his fruits and veggies--in later years anyway. I'll be looking for references to his diet more closely from now on.

dirk   Link to this

Scurvy?

The following passages seem to suggest that there was scurvy around - also among non sailors - in the 16th, 17th, and early 18th c.

"Diet was strong on protein and carbohydrate but weaker on vitamins C and D. Hence scurvy (especially at sea) and rickets were common conditions among the lower classes."
http://www.kcs.cambs.sch.uk/depts/history/detai...

"The records of the years 1755-63 list the most common ailments dealt with as: ague, rheumatism, fever, venereal disease, abcesses and ulcerated skin, scurvy, swollen, sore or painful limbs, asthma, dropsy, injuries from accidents, consumption and tumours. Also mentioned are hysterical flatulency, melancholy, bloody flux, leprosy and paronchia- inflammation of the fingernails."
http://www.bwpics.co.uk/infirmary.html

Fern Luker   Link to this

I am a decendent of George Downing through his daughter Margaret Lullium Downing and although he was an old rascal I still take pride in my history.So about fifteen years ago I met a fellow in Houston, Texas and we became more than just casual friends. He was interested in geneology and so was I and after about a year we discovered that our relatives had known and dispised each other. It amazed both of us how down through the generations families keep bumping into each other and we don't even realise it. Allen is gone now, but when I read Pepy's diary and the references he makes to his friends and associates, somehow I feel my friend's presence standing beside me in that long grey line smiling, and waiting for me to join him.

Capt.Petrus.S. Dorpmans   Link to this

"...,without any sense of my old pain..."

Pepys had been cut for the stone on March 26, 1658. by Mr.James Pierce, a surgeon.

Daniel Baker   Link to this

Pepys's home at Axe Yard was right across the street from Scotland Yard, later to become famous as London's police HQ.

language hat   Link to this

"Pepys’s home at Axe Yard was right across the street from Scotland Yard"

No it wasn't, it was blocks south of Great Scotland Yard. Please don't add misinformation to the annotations.

Daniel Baker   Link to this

Ouch. Sorry. It appeared to me on the map that Axe Yard was across from Little Scotland Yard (which I erroneously thought was also part of the police HQ). Is that correct, or is Axe Yard even further south than that?

Daniel R. Baker   Link to this

OK, I was definitely way off. I found Axe Yard on Susanna's motco.com map http://www.motco.com/Map/81002/SeriesSearchPlat..., and it isn't even on Whitehall. It's on King Street, just south of where Whitehall used to split into King Street and Parliament Street. Closer to the Privy Garden than to Scotland Yard. Sorry about the mistake.

language hat   Link to this

No problem, and sorry about the grumpy tone.

Betina Luker Foreman   Link to this

I just noticed a post by Fern Luker. Fern if you are out there please contact me. I believe we are related and I would love to get in touch. I think our connection is through John William Luker Jr. of Houston Texas. Please contact me (512)771-6318. Thank you!!
Betina

Jim Retzer   Link to this

Perhaps I'm a novice to this sort of question, but I'm utterly confused when I try to match up days of the week to Pepys' dates.

He very clearly states in his opening diary entry that January 1st is the Lords Day -a Sunday. However, when I referred to a perpetual calendar for the year 1660, I discovered that January 1st fell not on a Sunday, but on a Thursday.

The only months that year in which the dates cited (specifically the 1st and 8th)fall on a Sunday is February -which in 1660 had only 29 days- and August, which had the requisite 31.

This chronological confusion spreads across the whole of the Diary as far as I can tell.

Can someone explain this to me?

Mary   Link to this

Are you sure that your perpetual calendar has taken account of the 1752 Great Calendar Change from Julian to Gregorian, which resulted in the "lost" eleven days?

Bill Greenwell   Link to this

Some confusion here. Lady Day was and is March 25th. When the calendar changed in 1752 the tax year was changed after objections that taxes would be levied on too short a year. The authorities had removed eleven days (starting with Sept 3 1752), and therefore 'reimbursed' the taxpayers by adding eleven days - and an apologetic extra, twelfth one. Hence our tax year starts on April 6th.

So we have a church year that follows the conception of Jesus (March 25th) through to his birth, nine months later (Dec 25th), a calendar year, and a tax year.

A cursory look at church registers shows that, for the churches at least, reckoning the beginning of a year was always from March 25th until 1753. For quite some time the year was shown as 'n.s.', that is, 'new style'.

Kerstin   Link to this

The left-over turkey incident: might it be that his wife was still upset because she had thought that she was pregnant. Notice the lack of comment or emotion that she is not ...

Autumnbreeze Movies   Link to this

I've been reading the diary for many months now and, after initially feeling bewildered in the 17th century world of daily events, common phrases and puzzling encounters with people great and small, have arrived at the date of 10 November 1667, the second half of my reading done on this site (the first, on my Kindle). Thanks to this website, my understanding of Pepys's London soared; I now feel at home in his world, and very involved in its joys and troubles. I've also become aware that when I began to read the entries, I was so overwhelmed that I missed a lot as there were no annotations or explanations on the Kindle (I did a bit of researching myself, discovered a few things, and as I was doing this stumbled upon this wonderful website). So now I'm reading the first entries again, and the annotations, to make up for my loss. Thank you, Phil, and everybody who contributed to it!

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