Sunday 3 June 1660

Waked in the morning by one who when I asked who it was, he told me one from Bridewell, which proved Captain Holland. I rose presently to him. He is come to get an order for the setting out of his ship, and to renew his commission.

He tells me how every man goes to the Lord Mayor to set down their names, as such as do accept of his Majesty’s pardon, and showed me a certificate under the Lord Mayor’s hand that he had done so. At sermon in the morning; after dinner into my cabin, to cast my accounts up, and find myself to be worth near 100l., for which I bless Almighty God, it being more than I hoped for so soon, being I believe not clearly worth 25l. when I came to sea besides my house and goods.

Then to set my papers in order, they being increased much upon my hands through want of time to put them in order. The ship’s company all this while at sermon. After sermon my Lord did give me instruction to write to London about business, which done, after supper to bed.

21 Annotations

Vince   Link to this

100 L is £9000 equivalent in todays money (from the ), I guess relativly speaking at age 26 in 1660 and with a regular income and excluding house and possessions this makes SP fairly well off unless he gambles it all away or spends it on clothes and musical instruments!

vincent   Link to this

Pay: todays entry sailor is 930L/month vs 19s(5 1/4d per day) in 1660 (in the 50s it was less than 7L /month or 28s a week: For stealing 5s and a 1d you could be hung > oh well
current data from:

Paul Brewster   Link to this

not clearly worth 25l. when I came to sea besides my house and goods
L&M footnotes that "He owned a lease of his house, not the freehold." This seems to confound a bit the modern sense of personal monetary worth.

Grahamt   Link to this

Re: "...confound a bit the modern sense of personal monetary worth."
An owned lease would be part of personal wealth. Even in modern Britain, a lease can be bought and sold, and inflates with the cost of housing even though its validity shortens with time. A London leasehold can cost more than a provincial freehold on a similar property.
Property often has 25 or 99 year leases, so can be traded by many people before it expires.

Jenny Doughty   Link to this

I think the laws regarding leasehold are different in the US. In the UK, I own an apartment with a lease over 100 years long on it. The ground rent (payable to the freeholder) is very small in comparison to the value of the property and on an older lease is tiny. In terms of selling property, a long lease is almost as good as freehold, and often leases can be extended when the property changes hands (mine was). If Sam owned a decent length lease, as far as he is concerned he pretty much owns his house. Do we have any information about the nature and length of his leasehold agreement?

Philip   Link to this

Re Leaseholds. The law in the US is very similar to that of the UK with regard to leases, but they appear to be used more for commercial development and finance in the US. Ground leases of 60 or more years are often used in the construction and financing of such things as shopping malls and office buildings. The chief difference (it appears to me) is that in the US, there is a strong preference for fee ownership for single family residences and townhouses or garden apartments. In multistory buildings, there is an increasing preference for condominium ownership, which is a form of fee ownership as well. However, leaseholds are very common in Hawaii.

From the previous entries in the diary Pepys's lease appears to have been an oral agreement and seems to have extended from quarter to quarter, but this is only speculation on my part. The Statute of Frauds, 29 Car. II, c. 3, entitled "An Act for the Prevention of Frauds and Perjuries," was not enacted until 1678.

Colin Gravois   Link to this

Regarding references to the Lord Mayor today and in days past (he's referring to London's chief magistrate, I suppose) whereby it seems to be within his honor's purview to validate pardons in the name of the sovereign, who by the way is still on not very firm ground. Was that a common working relationship between Lord mayors and kings or is it just because we're in a still very unsettled time. Or is this a Lord mayor with clout who's destined to play a future role in the government?

Nix   Link to this

In the U.S., there seems to be a strong cultural bias in favor of land ownership rather than ground leasing. I suppose this stems from our having so much land relative to European countries. Also, unlike the British legal system, our law has always favored free alienability of land -- very little entailment or the other devices developed in Medieval times to keep property in the family. Even many experienced real estate lawyers have a hard time accepting the idea that a long term ground lease, with continuing options to renew, is "as good as" ownership in fee simple.

Roger Miller   Link to this

This is an entry from the diary of Ralph Josselin of Earls Colne for 6th June 1660

"Rode to lay claim to the King's pardon before the Mayor of Colchester"

vincent   Link to this

Freehold/Leasehold : Simple enough: long term family planning versus the quarterly results:
Ownership or oweing which is better:
This is the debate of centuries: To accumulate: To Own: Have control:Empires etc.:
To own Freehold ,Ground Rights,Air Rights 'tis the Fun of Lawyers to argue over:
Land and its control and What it Produces?, is still the essence of true Wealth: Freedoms,this is the true debate?( not how romantic it is to own a race horse(or title) or any other symbol of worth etc.)(Please do (not) speak of the ****** lucre)
Inflation /Deflation What is a Mans time worth: Why King? Why Parliament? Land cannot be Printed except in Holland and a few other spots on the Globe.

vincent   Link to this

"Waked ..morning by one who when I asked who it was, he told me one from Bridewell, which proved Captain Holland. I rose presently to him."
Quite a sense of 'umour. "world turn'd upside down".

jamie yeager   Link to this

Even aside from the leasehold value
Sam now reports a quadrupled net worth as a result of the voyage (100l vs 25l). And he has the Lord's promise in the last few days of even more to come. No wonder he's in no hurry to run off to London, even to see his wife...

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"He tells me how every man goes to the Lord Mayor to set down their names, as such as do accept of his Majesty’s pardon, and showed me a certificate under the Lord Mayor’s hand that he had done so."

L&M note "Soldiers and sailors were among the first to claim the pardon offered in the King's Declaration of Breda. The Lord Mayor issued and signed printed certificates for this purpose...." citing the Calendar of State Papers Domestic: Charles II, 1660-1, p 37. [ available online for £30 for one year's access ].

Bill   Link to this

Does anyone else find "vincent" annoying?

Mary K   Link to this

Not every annotator's style suits every reader. In the course of the original run-through we learnt to glide across the annotations that regularly irritated and to concentrate on those that struck a more cogent note. On the whole we proved to be a pretty tolerant group and I hope that we shall remain so throughout the second reading.

Bill   Link to this

Point taken. I'll give it my best try.

arby   Link to this

Agreed, the annotators were tolerant and helpful to this Pepys n00b when I first found the Diary, either years ago or years in the future, depending on how you look at it. I'm really enjoying this second chance, I missed all of this the first time. And, spoiler, there will be annoying annotators still to come, Bill.

Dick Wilson   Link to this

If memory serves, Henry VIII enacted the Statute of Uses, which made land an article of commerce; and that created a need for a Statute of Frauds, which followed a year later. I might be mistaken. I was very young at the time.

Here, however, I do not think that Sam is being precise. Rather, he is bragging to himself "I have a house to live in, goods to furnish it, and L100 in the strong-box!"

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Statute of Uses

Dick is this the Statute of Frauds you had in mind? (I find no earlier)

Dick Wilson   Link to this

No, Terry. I was thinking of 32 Henry VIII Chap 1. The statutes of Uses, Wills, Frauds and the Parole Evidence Rules seem to originate there. The 1677 Statute of Charles II did not appear out of thin air; it replaced earlier law. Americans today will find it in the Uniform Commercial Code 2-207. For non-Americans: the Uniform Commercial Code is a piece of legislation passed into law by each of the 50 states, in almost, but not quite, identical language.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Dick Wilson, perhaps it is this 32 Henry VIII, c. 1 -- An Acte howe Land may willed by Testament. (Not your title, but....?)

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