Up very early, and now beginning to be settled in my wits again, I went about setting down my last four days’ observations this morning. After that, was trimmed by a barber that has not trimmed me yet, my Spaniard being on shore.
So soon as they were entered we shot the guns off round the fleet. After that they went to view the ship all over, and were most exceedingly pleased with it.
They seem to be both very fine gentlemen.
After that done, upon the quarter- deck table, under the awning, the Duke of York and my Lord, Mr. Coventry, and I, spent an hour at allotting to every ship their service, in their return to England; which having done, they went to dinner, where the table was very full: the two Dukes at the upper end, my Lord Opdam next on one side, and my Lord on the other.
Two guns given to every man while he was drinking the King’s health, and so likewise to the Duke’s health.
I took down Monsieur d’Esquier to the great cabin below, and dined with him in state alone with only one or two friends of his.
After that done, they made to the shore in the Dutch boat that brought them, and I got into the boat with them; but the shore was so full of people to expect their coming, as that it was as black (which otherwise is white sand), as every one could stand by another.
When we came near the shore, my Lord left them and came into his own boat, and General Pen and I with him; my Lord being very well pleased with this day’s work.
By the time we came on board again, news is sent us that the King is on shore; so my Lord fired all his guns round twice, and all the fleet after him, which in the end fell into disorder, which seemed very handsome.
The gun over against my cabin I fired myself to the King, which was the first time that he had been saluted by his own ships since this change; but holding my head too much over the gun, I had almost spoiled my right eye.
Nothing in the world but going of guns almost all this day. In the evening we began to remove cabins; I to the carpenter’s cabin, and Dr. Clerke with me, who came on board this afternoon, having been twice ducked in the sea to-day coming from shore, and Mr. North and John Pickering the like. Many of the King’s servants came on board to- night; and so many Dutch of all sorts came to see the ship till it was quite dark, that we could not pass by one another, which was a great trouble to us all.
This afternoon Mr. Downing (who was knighted yesterday by the King) was here on board, and had a ship for his passage into England, with his lady and servants.1 By the same token he called me to him when I was going to write the order, to tell me that I must write him Sir G. Downing.
My Lord lay in the roundhouse to-night.
This evening I was late writing a French letter myself by my Lord’s order to Monsieur Kragh, Embassador de Denmarke a la Haye, which my Lord signed in bed. After that I to bed, and the Doctor, and sleep well.
About midnight arrived there Mr. Downing, who did the affairs of England to the Lords the Estates, in quality of Resident under Oliver Cromwell, and afterward under the pretended Parliament, which having changed the form of the government, after having cast forth the last Protector, had continued him in his imploiment, under the quality of Extraordinary Envoy. He began to have respect for the King’s person, when he knew that all England declared for a free parliament, and departed from Holland without order, as soon as he understood that there was nothing that could longer oppose the re- establishment of monarchal government, with a design to crave letters of recommendation to General Monk. This lord considered him, as well because of the birth of his wife, which is illustrious, as because Downing had expressed some respect for him in a time when that eminent person could not yet discover his intentions. He had his letters when he arrived at midnight at the house of the Spanish Embassador, as we have said. He presented them forthwith to the King, who arose from table a while after, read the letters, receiv’d the submissions of Downing, and granted him the pardon and grace which he asked for him to whom he could deny nothing. Some daies after the King knighted him, and would it should be believed, that the strong aversions which this minister of the Protector had made appear against him on all occasions, and with all sorts of persons indifferently, even a few daies before the publick and general declaration of all England, proceeded not from any evil intention, but only from a deep dissimulation, wherewith he was constrained to cover his true sentiments, for fear to prejudice the affairs of his Majesty.
— Sir William Lowers Relation … of the Voiage and Residence which … Charles the II. hath made in Holland, Hague, 1660, folio, pp. 72-73. ↩