Tuesday 6 March 1659/60

(Shrove Tuesday.) I called Mr. Sheply and we both went up to my Lord’s lodgings at Mr. Crew’s, where he bade us to go home again, and get a fire against an hour after. Which we did at White Hall, whither he came, and after talking with him and me about his going to sea, he called me by myself to go along with him into the garden, where he asked me how things were with me, and what he had endeavoured to do with my uncle to get him to do something for me but he would say nothing too. He likewise bade me look out now at this turn some good place, and he would use all his own, and all the interest of his friends that he had in England, to do me good. And asked me whether I could, without too much inconvenience, go to sea as his secretary, and bid me think of it. He also began to talk of things of State, and told me that he should want one in that capacity at sea, that he might trust in, and therefore he would have me to go.

He told me also, that he did believe the King would come in, and did discourse with me about it, and about the affection of the people and City, at which I was full glad. After he was gone, I waiting upon him through the garden till he came to the Hall, where I left him and went up to my office, where Mr. Hawly brought one to me, a seaman, that had promised 10l. to him if he get him a purser’s place, which I think to endeavour to do. Here comes my uncle Tom, whom I took to Will’s and drank with, poor man, he comes to inquire about the knights of Windsor, of which he desires to get to be one. While we were drinking, in comes Mr. Day, a carpenter in Westminster, to tell me that it was Shrove Tuesday, and that I must go with him to their yearly Club upon this day, which I confess I had quite forgot. So I went to the Bell, where were Mr. Eglin, Veezy, Vincent a butcher, one more, and Mr. Tanner, with whom I played upon a viall, and he a viallin, after dinner, and were very merry, with a special good dinner, a leg of veal and bacon, two capons and sausages and fritters, with abundance of wine. After that I went home, where I found Kate Sterpin who hath not been here a great while before. She gone I went to see Mrs. Jem, at whose chamber door I found a couple of ladies, but she not being there, we hunted her out, and found that she and another had hid themselves behind a door. Well, they all went down into the dining-room, where it was full of tag, rag, and bobtail, dancing, singing, and drinking, of which I was ashamed, and after I had staid a dance or two I went away. Going home, called at my Lord’s for Mr. Sheply, but found him at the Lion with a pewterer, that he had bought pewter to-day of. With them I drank, and so home and wrote by the post, by my Lord’s command, for J. Goods to come up presently. For my Lord intends to go forthwith into the Swiftsure till the Nazeby be ready.

This day I hear that the Lords do intend to sit, and great store of them are now in town, and I see in the Hall to-day.

Overton at Hull do stand out, but can, it is thought, do nothing; and Lawson, it is said, is gone with some ships thither, but all that is nothing.

My Lord told me, that there was great endeavours to bring in the Protector again; but he told me, too, that he did believe it would not last long if he were brought in; no, nor the King neither (though he seems to think that he will come in), unless he carry himself very soberly and well. Every body now drinks the King’s health without any fear, whereas before it was very private that a man dare do it. Monk this day is feasted at Mercers’ Hall, and is invited one after another to all the twelve Halls in London!

Many think that he is honest yet, and some or more think him to be a fool that would raise himself, but think that he will undo himself by endeavouring it.

My mind, I must needs remember, has been very much eased and joyed at my Lord’s great expressions of kindness this day, and in discourse thereupon my wife and I lay awake an hour or two in our bed.

38 Annotations

Dale Wallace  •  Link

Mr. Hawly brought one to me, a seaman, that had promised Rio to him if he get him a purser’s place.

Can anyone tell me what Rio is?

I love this site and want to thank all of you who take the time to annotate each day’s entries. It makes it ever so much more understandable for those of us in the U.S.

Mary  •  Link


Looks like a misreading, or possibly a scanning error. L&M give 10l (i.e.ten pounds) as their reading at this point.

codefreak  •  Link

'they all went down into the dining-room, where it was full of tag, rag, and bobtail, dancing, singing, and drinking, of which I was ashamed'
Why was our man P ashamed? Because of the ladies? Does ashamed have a different connotation at this time? He seems not to mind a pint of wine and singing with his male acquaintances. Thanks to all involved in the site. This is my first post but I am a daily viewer and enjoy it immensely.

steve h  •  Link

Shrove Tuesday

Where are the pancake races? Where are the prentices doing mischief in the London streets? Where are the football games? All suppressed by the Puritans, who disliked the secularized celebration of many traditional Church holidays. But surely the tide for merry-making was turning in 1660, along with drinking health to the King. Sam and his friends did celebrate at an Inn, pig out on meat and fritters (pancakes. I assume) and drink freely (one wonders what abundant can be mean, given Sam's usual consumption). But when Pepys was "ashamed" when he encountered the frivolity at Mrs. Jem's, was it discomfort with the singing, dancing, and drinking at Mrs. Jem's -- a residue of anxiety about attracting the attention of the pious by going too far? Or worry about his status as designated protector to Mrs. Jem (and that's why she was hiding from him)? Or just a personal reaction to that particular party? We don't think of Pepys as a party pooper normally. In any case, we have to marvel at how much Pepys did accomplish (and remember) this day, in spite of the freely flowing wine.

Todd Bernhardt  •  Link

re: "of which I was ashamed"

I think Sam's shame has to do with his attitude toward Mrs. Jem -- who, we should remember is in her early teens -- and drinking. There was an earlier entry (sorry, I should link to it here, but need to run to a meeting and don't have time to hunt it down) where he admitted feeling troubled about her drinking what was, in his opinion, too much wine ... so I think Sam's protective nature is being expressed here.

Thanks, Mary, for pointing out the scanning error.

john s.  •  Link

Two great scenes, bookends...
First, alone with his Lord in the garden, reviewing events and being offered the post of secretary when they go to sea (to bring the king home). His career has just taken a marked turn for the better. And second, at the end of the day alone with his wife in bed, elated at events, savoring his new importance, staying awake late talking and taking it all in.

Hhomeboy  •  Link

J. Goods; Who he?

"...With them I drank, and so home and wrote by the post, by my Lord’s command, for J. Goods to come up presently. For my Lord intends to go forthwith into the Swiftsure till the Nazeby be ready….”

Ann  •  Link

I'm dying to find out if he goes, but thankful no one has acted as "spoiler" and told us. Thanks to all for all the informative posts. I couldn't get through it everyday without all the explanations!

Hhomeboy  •  Link

Sam savours and reiterates the Montagu coterie's blasé political cynicism re: autocrats and royals alike…

“…My Lord told me, that there was great endeavours to bring in the Protector again; but he told me, too, that he did believe it would not last long if he were brought in; no, nor the King neither (though he seems to think that he will come in), unless he carry himself very soberly and well….”

And let’s not forget Lambert who had been attempting to ally himself through marital means to Charles’ dim brother, who was seen as the next ‘King’ on the political chessboard.

These arrogant addicts and valiant servants of statecraft are all in for unanticipated revelations re: Charles’ religious realpolitik, resilience and staying powers.

mcewen  •  Link

"J. Goods" is John Goods who will appear in the diary in April and May.

Susanna  •  Link

Shrove Tuesday

Pepys may not have seen the traditional football match or cockfight in London on this Shrove Tuesday, but if he had been in Bristol, he would have seen the apprentices using the traditional games as a protest against the Republicans who ran the city government. Since cockfighting had been banned, they went to the mayor's house to torment geese and hens instead. As they had also been forbidden to toss dogs in the air, they threw cats instead. Then they beat up the sheriff when he tried to arrest them. (Ronald Hutton, The Stations of the Sun)

Martin K. Foys  •  Link

comes vs. came
I was really struck by Sam's use of "comes" in a narrative dominated by the past tense (e.g. "Here comes my uncle Tom" in today's entry, as opposed to something like "in came Mr. Wade and his friend Capt. Moyse" from the Feb. 16 entry). At first I though it might be an indicator of how caught up he becomes in setting down his day, forgetting himself and slipping into the present as he recounts it. The Paston letters from the fifteenth century have a few similar moments of present shifting, usually at moments of high excitement.

But a quick search reveals he uses the form a bit too often for that explanation, and often in conjunction with "came" in the same entries.

"Come" was used for the past tense in some midlands and southern dialects into the seventeenth century, but that doesn't quite fit either -- Sam isn't writing "he come" as he would in the past tense.

So what is going on here? Is Sam just mixing his tenses because he dips in and out of the past as he writes? Has anyone noticed him doing this with verbs besides "come"? Or am I just missing something obvious?

Pauline  •  Link

comes vs. came
Martin, I was reading it as marking an interruption, a meeting of a different tenor to the other meetings he is having this day. A sort of "As if I weren't busy enough, in comes Tom, in comes Mr. Day." Mildly, even comically, inconvenienced--eyes roll slightly. This comes from my sense of current usage; no idea if it holds for 17th C. usage, but it does seem to fit.

Martin K. Foys  •  Link


Pauline -- thanks for the reply -- the idea of an interruption makes good sense.

Rereading the entry more closely, though, I did notice, that Sam occasionally does tend to mix his tenses a bit -- for instance "This day I hear that the Lords do intend to sit" followed in the next sentence by "My Lord told me" -- curious.

Judith Boles  •  Link

Could anyone comment on the twelve Halls that Monk would be invited to visit?

Grahamt  •  Link

Re: Fritters
Fritters are slices of apple or vegetable dipped in batter and deep fried, not pancakes. Nowadays they are usually potato, but probably apple in 1660.

steve h  •  Link

Fritters again

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
Fritter \Frit"ter\, n. [OR. fritour, friture, pancake, F.
friture frying, a thing fried, from frire to fry. See Far,
v. t.]
1. A small quantity of batter, fried in boiling lard or in a
frying pan.

I believe that that in 1660 pancakes were fried, and probably closer to current fritters, more like latkes (potato pancakes) than crepes. In any case, both fritters and pancakes (along with doughnuts) are associated with Shrove Tuesday.

michael f vincent  •  Link

Fritter: I would say thats a good guess Grahamt: most likely a bramley type of apple,it stored well thru the winter months. The ashamed part? I bet it was a dilly of a party going on. Not the type of party that one would mention to ones folk especially if the they were of a puritanical mindset.

steve h  •  Link


"PURSER, the old name for the paymaster of the British and American navies ...In the British navy he was appointed by a warrant from the admiralty and was paid partly by salary and partly by a percentage (10%) of the value of unexpended stores."
1911 Encylopedia

From my reading of naval history and Patrick O'Brian's great novels, the purser also gave the sailors their ration of booze (rum, wine, or beer), stored and doled out food, and sold other necessities (such as tobacco) to sailors. For some, it was a very profitable job, worth the ten pounds honorarium. It seems putrsers were resented by sailors for suspicions of adulterating stores and hard bargaining with a captive audience.

michael f vincent  •  Link

change in atmosphere -"now drinks the King’s health without any fear, whereas before it was very private that a man dare do it" very expressive of conditions of the time. Unfortunately free speech is not always available.

Martin K. Foys  •  Link

The Great Twelve Halls

The reference is to the top 12 Guild Halls in London. Interestingly, guilds were ranked in 1515, from #1 (the Mercers) down to 48. Numbers 1-12 were the most prestigious, and were known as "the Great Twelve."

There's a good discussion of the rise of the guild hall at the site for the Worshipful Company of Bakers:

Alan Bedford  •  Link

The "twelve Halls" would, I believe, have been the halls of the "great twelve" of the London guilds, or livery companies: Mercers, Grocers, Drapers, Fishmongers, Goldsmiths, Merchant Taylors, Skinners, Haberdashers, Salters, Ironmongers, Vintners and Clothworkers. That's just a guess, now. Any confirmation from one of you Londoners?

Nix  •  Link

"Comes" vs. "Came" --

Could the mixed tenses be the result of imperfect decoding of Samuel's shorthand?

KVK  •  Link

The use of 'comes' when relating a narrative otherwise in the past tense was a discursive tic of the period (going back to the 16th c.). It was used to flag the entrance of a new character into the story being told. It was characteristic of informal rather than formal speaking and writing. In plays, for example, it was the less exalted personages who would use this. I can think of a few examples from Shakespeare, to give an idea:

BORACHIO: Being entertained for a perfumer, as I was smoking a musty room, comes me the prince and Claudio, hand in hand in sad conference: I whipt me behind the arras; and there heard it agreed upon that the prince should woo Hero for himself, and having obtained her, give her to Count Claudio. – (much ado i.iii)

PAGE: He came with flowers to strew his lady's grave;
And bid me stand aloof, and so I did:
Anon comes one with light to ope the tomb;
And by and by my master drew on him;
And then I ran away to call the watch. - (Romeo and Juliet V.iii)

FALSTAFF: You shall hear. As good luck would have it, comes in one Mistress Page; gives intelligence of Ford's approach; and, in her invention and Ford's wife's distraction, they conveyed me into a buck-basket. -(Merry Wives)

Note that Falstaff also places the next verb in present tense, but goes back to past tense before the sentence is over.

Hhomeboy  •  Link

Re: tense switches in same sentence:

KVK has pointed out the spoken use by onstage characters in Shakepeare's plays of the present tense to accentuate the stage entrance or approach of another character...

We aslo encounter it a good deal in contemporary fiction when a firt=person narrator or a character in a novel or story is 'speaking' or being quoted.

I think it seems confusing in a diary sometimes but we all do it: eg.

Q: describe what happeneed, M'aam

A: well, first he comes into the room and sits down without saying anything to me. Then I noticed he wasn't wearing any....

Grahamt  •  Link

Fritters and pancakes
Sorry to be pedantic, but I think we may be talking about different things here. The Oxford English Dictionary has:
fritter /"frIt@/ n.1LME. [(O)Fr. friture f. Proto- Romance, f. L frict- pa. ppl stem of frigere FRY v.: see -ER2.]
1 A piece of (usu. specified) meat, fruit, etc., coated in batter and deep-fried. LME.
LME = Late Middle English or up to 1500, so before Pepys' time, and it still has exactly that meaning in modern (British) English, so why would it have changed to mean pancake - for which there is already a word that is older than fritter - then changed back again?
Just to be sure we are talking about the same thing:-
Pancake: round, flat, about 10-12 inch diameter, shallow fried, first on one side then the other. Raw batter consistency of cream.
Fritter: same shape/size as fruit (e.g. banana) or slice of vegetable/fruit, deep fried. Batter thicker and stickier, to stick to item being frittered.
I'm not knocking Webster's, but it is concerned with modern American usage rather than British, so may not be your best guide to Pepys' usage.
Being in Malaysia at present, I missed out on my Shrove Tuesday pancakes, but I can still get fruit fritters here.

Django Cat  •  Link

Banana fritters are particularly wonderful.

Esme  •  Link

From my English country childhood:

Pancakes version 1: thin, fried, the size of the frying pan; eaten with lemon wedges as a pudding, especially on Shrove Tuesday. We ate these much less often than version 2 or fritters. Made from egg, flour, milk.

Pancakes version 2: thicker smaller rounds cooked on a griddle (a heated flat metal plate, lightly greased); eaten hot with butter and possibly jam for afternoon tea -- closely related to Canadian hotcakes eaten with maple syrup, but half the diameter. Made with the same ingredients as version 1, but stiffer. Sometimes called "drop scones".

Fritters: the same thick small rounds made from the same stiffer batter, but fried in a generous amount of lard; flavouring added to the batter and cooked with it, herb or grated cheese for breakfast or a savoury snack, or slices of apple, banana etc as a pudding.

You can't cook a much cheaper meal than herb fritters!.

fimm  •  Link

Esme, your 'version 2' pancakes are also known as Scottish pancakes. (But not in our (Scottish) household, where the distinction is seen as unnecessary!)

John C-T  •  Link

The great twelve halls.

In 1677 Pepys became Master of the Clothworkers Company. There is some interesting detail on http://www.clothworkers.co.uk/hall-history.html, Here is an excerpt --

"The Clothworkers' Company is an amalgamation of two older Companies, the Fullers and the Shearmen. At the time of the union in 1528, the Fullers had a Hall in Billiter Lane, now Billiter Street, and the Shearmen a Hall in Mincing Lane. It was in the latter that the new Clothworkers' Company decided to settle.

The site had been conveyed by a deed dated 15th July 1456 in the reign of Henry VI to certain individual Shearmen. This deed is still in the Company's possession and is proof that the Clothworkers, as successors to the Shearmen, have occupied the site of their present Hall for more than five centuries.

The first Shearmen's Hall in Mincing Lane was erected about 1472 and demolished in 1548 to make way for the second Hall which was completed the following year and enlarged in 1608.

In 1633 the Hall was again rebuilt and it was this small red-brick building, the third on the site, which was destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666. Samuel Pepys, who was to become Master of the Company in 1677, had returned to his office in nearby Seething Lane to sleep there during the emergency of the Fire. He recorded in his Diary for 6th September 1666 'But strange it was to see Cloathworkers-hall on fire these three days and nights in one body of Flame - it being the cellar, full of Oyle.'"

Pedro  •  Link

"where it was full of tag, rag, and bobtail"

When did the tag come before the rag and bobtail?
Rag, tag and bobtail, riff-raff or a children's programme from 1953?

Linda Camidge  •  Link

I remember the children's programme and its title suggests the phrase was still known to adults - a little bit of an ironic aside to the 1953 parent?

I have occasionally heard adults bought up in the 50s (but nobody younger than that) use it to denote "riff raff". I suspect that the original meaning has been killed off by the children's programme - which muddied the water by being about animals, of whom I remember no improprity.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

House of Commons Journal - 6 March 1660 http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?co...

Today a great number of matters concerning breaches of and measures to keep the peace are decided.

Custos Brevium. Sheriffs. Col. Lambert. Sir A. Hesilrig. Suspected Persons. Col. Overton. Dunkirke. Navy Commissions. Tuesday, March 6th, 1659 [sic]; Afternoon. Customs. Militia Commissioners. Persons taken with Arms. Militia Commissioners. Militia Commissioners. Lord Fawkland. Army Pay. Cust. Rot. of Bedfordshire. Commrs of Assessment.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

E.g. Col. Lambert http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?co...
After a long discussion of his history and the argument of his case, the House "Resolved, That the Parliament doth approve of what the Council of State have done, in committing of Colonel John Lambert to the Tower."

Why? "He fought during the English Civil War and then in Oliver Cromwell's Scottish campaign (1650–51), becoming thereafter active in civilian politics until his dismissal by Cromwell in 1657. During this time he wrote the Instrument of Government, Britain's only codified constitution, and was influential in bringing about the Protectorate.

"He...was re-appointed to a position in the army in 1659. He prevented the sitting of the Rump Parliament and created a Committee of Safety with which to run the interim government. However, George Monck's march south caused Lambert's army to disintegrate and he was imprisoned in the Tower of London in March 1660."

SPOILER - "He made one final attempt to resist the Restoration of 1660 after escaping a month later, but his support had dwindled. He spent the remaining 24 years of his life imprisoned, first on Guernsey, and then on Drake's Island where he died in the winter of 1683-4." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Lambert_%28ge...

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

Re: "where it was full of tag, rag, and bobtail"

OED offers:

‘1. rag-tag . . and bob-tail .
a. A disreputable or disorganized group of people; the lowest element of a community; the riff-raff or rabble; = tag, rag, and bobtail . .
1725 W. Teague Let. in Mist's Weekly Jrnl. 2 Oct., My Assistance in this Piece of Impudence, if it should ever succeed, will be esteemed Persons of Worth and Reputation, especially if they should be indicted, though they are Rag-Tag, and Bob-tail, and be thought witty.
. . 1992 S. Holloway Courage High! iii. 36/1 Any rag, tag and bobtail who could reach a fire with a vehicle which might pass as a ‘fire engine’ was..getting in the way of the trained firemen.’

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