Monday 28 January 1660/61

At the office all the morning; dined at home, and after dinner to Fleet Street, with my sword to Mr. Brigden (lately made Captain of the Auxiliaries) to be refreshed, and with him to an ale-house, where I met Mr. Davenport; and after some talk of Cromwell, Ireton and Bradshaw’s bodies being taken out of their graves to-day,1 I went to Mr. Crew’s and thence to the Theatre, where I saw again “The Lost Lady,” which do now please me better than before; and here I sitting behind in a dark place, a lady spit backward upon me by a mistake, not seeing me, but after seeing her to be a very pretty lady, I was not troubled at it at all. Thence to Mr. Crew’s, and there met Mr. Moore, who came lately to me, and went with me to my father’s, and with him to Standing’s, whither came to us Dr. Fairbrother, who I took and my father to the Bear and gave a pint of sack and a pint of claret.

He do still continue his expressions of respect and love to me, and tells me my brother John will make a good scholar. Thence to see the Doctor at his lodging at Mr. Holden’s, where I bought a hat, cost me 35s. So home by moonshine, and by the way was overtaken by the Comptroller’s coach, and so home to his house with him. So home and to bed. This noon I had my press set up in my chamber for papers to be put in.

  1. The bodies of Oliver Cromwell, Henry Ireton, John Bradshaw, and Thomas Pride, were dug up out of their graves to be hanged at Tyburn, and buried under the gallows. Cromwell’s vault having been opened, the people crowded very much to see him.

    — Rugge’s Diurnal.

37 Annotations

Michael L   Link to this

"A lady spit backward upon me by a mistake, not seeing me, but after seeing her to be a very pretty lady, I was not troubled at it at all."

Well, this certainly gets my vote for the funniest line in the diary to date.

A. De Araujo   Link to this

"a lady spit ...upon me.....I was not trouble at it at all" I wonder if he is into spanking as well!

Michael L   Link to this

One of the (several) funny things about the line is that the event was considered significant enough to write down in his diary several hours later. If this accidentally happened to me, I probably would have forgotten all about it after 15 minutes. But apparently it made a bigger impression on Pepys. Yes, it's evidence of his careful observation. But there seems to be something deeper as well that makes it also worth his further consideration.

Bradford   Link to this

If said expectorator had been ill-favored, squint-eyed, with a liverish cast to the countenance . . . wot then?

The Bishop   Link to this

Cromwell - leader of the faction who had Charles I tried and executed.

Henry Ireton - the #2 after Cromwell

John Bradshaw - judge who presided over the trial of charles I

Thomas Pride - the minor officer who forced the less radical members of Parliament out so that the remaining 'rump' could go forward with plans to try the king.

Emilio   Link to this

The Lost Lady

Disagreeable things do tend to happen to Sam at this play: caught by his own clerks on the 19th, when they were in a better seat than his own, and now actually spat upon. However nice it might have been to make the lady's acquaintance, maybe it's time for him to find another play and cut his losses.

Emilio   Link to this

L&M has a couple of differences in the text for today

"to an ale-house, where I met Mr. Davenport": Sam apparently wrote the name as Damport rather than Davenport, although L&M do think he refers to John Davenport of Brampton, Hunts. He only shows up in the diary this year before stepping back into the mists of history.

More significantly, Mr. Moore actually "came lately to towne" rather than "to me". "Lately" is also a longhand correction over shorthand "yesterday". Mr. Moore was last seen on 4 Jan., and in the last 3 weeks perhaps he has been travelling on business for Montagu.

daniel   Link to this

how important would the hanging of criminals' corpes be in the eyes of all the people of London at this time, I wonder? was it but a legal requirement justifiable by law or something every citizen would have bayed for out of a sense of vendetta?

Emilio   Link to this

"had my press set up"

This is a sense of the word "press" I hadn't been aware of, so here's the definition from the OED and some of the earlier example sentences:

IV. 15. A large (usually shelved) cupboard, esp. one placed in a recess in the wall, for holding clothes, books, etc.; in Scotland, also for provisions, victuals, plates, dishes, and other table requisites. Cf. clothes-press I. Also attrib.

c 1386 Chaucer Miller's T. 26 His presse ycovered with a faldyng reed. 1398 Trevisa Barth. De P.R. xviii. cv. (1495) gg iv/I Whanne the cloth is to longe in presse & thicke ayre. a 1533 Ld. Berners Huon cxi. 384 There were presses . . in the whiche presses were gownes and robes of fyne golde, and ryche mantelles furryd with sabyls. 1552 in Bury Wills (Camden) 142, I gyve her my newe cubbord with the presse in yt and too great books the Bybyll and the New Testament, with the Booke of the Kings Statuts. 1598 Shaks. Merry W. III. iii. 26 In the house, & in the chambers, and in the coffers, and in the presses.

dirk   Link to this

1£ value today

From
http://eh.net/htmit/ppowerbp/
(see background info - values today):
“£90.54 in the year 2002 has the same purchasing power as £1 in the year 1660.”

Admittedly this kind of conversion has its flaws - it’s usually based on averages and doesn’t take into account shifts in relative values between products in the consumption package - but it gives a usable general indication.

dirk   Link to this

"the hanging of a criminal's corpse"

Usually referred to as "gibbeting" (the word "gibbet", originally just another word for gallows, came to refer to the custom made steel cage sometimes used for this purpose).

This "post mortem" punishment was part of the normal procedure for some crimes (i.a. regicide).

"Prior to 1834, where the courts wished to make a particular example of a criminal they could order the additional punishment of gibbeting. After the hanging the prisoner would be stripped and their body dipped into molten pitch or tar and then, when it had cooled, be placed into an iron cage that surrounded the head, torso and upper legs. The cage was riveted together and then suspended from either the original gallows or a purpose built gibbet. The body was then left as a grim reminder to local people and could stay on the gibbet for a year or so until it rotted away or was eaten by birds etc."
From:
http://www.richard.clark32.btinternet.co.uk/han...

Some more details on the gibbeting of Cromwell's body:
"Oliver Cromwell, the Lord Protector of England, died in 1658, was embalmed and buried in Westminster Abbey after a lavish funeral. After the Restoration of the Monarchy in 1660, his body was disinterred and taken to Tyburn where it was gibbeted* until sundown. The Public Executioner cut down the body and cut off the head which was then impaled on a 25 foot pole on the roof of Westminster Hall. It remained there for over 24 years until 1685 when it was dislodged during a gale. A soldier found the head and hid it in his chimney. On his deathbed, he bequeathed the relic to his daughter. In 1710 the head appeared in a 'Freak Show', described as 'The Monster's Head'! For many years the head passed through numerous hands, the value increasing with each transaction until a Dr. Wilkinson bought it."
From:
http://www.historic-uk.com/HistoryUK/England-Hi...

andy   Link to this

Good job the very pretty lady wasn't the one-eyed Frenchman he met in a Hansom cab....

Firenze   Link to this

'press' - what would now be called an airing cupboard was always referred to in our house as the 'hot press'.

PHE   Link to this

Claret
Interesting reference here. Does the term refer exclusively to red Bourdeaux as it does today? Bourdeaux was certainly a principal supplier of wine to England at the time. (very mild spolier...) Sometime later in the diary, Sam refers to drinking Haut Brion (still an available Bourdeax wine), this being reported as the first ever written reference to a French wine by its chateau. (more comment on wine in background info).

Kevin Sheerstone   Link to this

"...with my sword to Mr. Brigden ... to be refreshed...

Sam bought his sword from Brigden only ten months ago, on 22nd. March, 1659/60, so how much 'refreshing' it would now need I'm not sure. I suspect refreshing means resharpening, perhaps a wise move in light of recent goings-
on.

David Duff   Link to this

Does anyone know if spitting was accepted behaviour amongst the gentry? In other words was the "lady" really a lady or was Sam being generous?

David   Link to this

Press - this word for cupboard is still in fairly common use in some parts of Ireland today.

Orrin   Link to this

Value of money.
I was just watching a documentary on the History Channel last night, and the statement was made that at the beginning of the 18th century (40 years after today's entry). a middle class family could live in London for about £100 per annum

Orrin   Link to this

Sam's sword edge. I was reading a novel about Napoleonic cavalry, and the protagonist would wince when swords were drawn from metal scabbards. That metallic shriek you hear as the sword comes out is the edge of the sword being dulled. (This doesn't apply to wooden or leather scabbards of course, or at least not to the same extent.)

On the other hand, did Sam ever have it sharpened in the first place?

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

Value of money

"£90.54 in the year 2002 has the same purchasing power as £1 in the year 1660."

That’s a bit too precise, don’t you think? Nevertheless, the observation that 100L a year was a middle-class income in London c. 1700 would seem to validate the relative scale of 60(per Vincent) to 90 (see above) to 1.

These comparisons are fascinating, and well worth pursuing, but more is involved than than shifts in relative values: you couldn’t puchase electric light at any price in 1660, for example. In that respect, and in others, relatively poor people may be better off today than the middle class, or even the rich, in 1660.

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

"... at Mr. Holden’s, where I bought a hat, cost me 35s."

Another data point. Using the scale of 60-90 to one for the value of the pound in 1661 relative to 2004, this hat cost Sam L105 to L157/6 in today's prices. By way of comparison, Bates in Jermyn St. advertises felt hats for L98 to L132, and bowlers at about L150. Going slightly up-market, James Lock of St. James's St. offers felt hats for about L140 and bowlers for L195. The pricey hat seems consistent with Sam's dandified taste in clothing. The Economist magazine promotes its "Big Mac Index" to estimate relative prices across the contempoary world. Perhaps we could propose a "Pepys Index" to look at the same question over the centuries?

vincent   Link to this

Value of money. It changes your life style:this time last year he did plays : but they were cards and his " flagolotte" now he spends his spare time watching others play. 'Tis the power of money:"...to the Theatre, where I saw again "The Lost Lady," which do now please me better than before; and here I sitting behind in a dark place, a lady spit backward upon me…” and of course there mans oldest sport[or game]enjoying the scenery.

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

Claret - "Sometime later in the diary, Sam refers to drinking Haut Brion (still an available Bourdeax wine), this being reported as the first ever written reference to a French wine by its chateau."

Bang goes my fancy that "Haut Brion" was simply a Frenchified way of spelling O'Brien, and referred to one of the Wild Geese. I looked up the Chateau site, which relates that
while visiting the Royal Oak Tavern in London on April 10, 1663 Pepys wrote "There I drank a sort of French wine called Ho-Bryan (sic) which hath a good and most particular taste which I never before encountered....." (At least Pepys picked up the Irish sounding name.) Alas, the main Irish exodus to France came after the Treaty of Limerick in 1691, and the chateau had been in the hands of the Pontac family since the 16th century at the time Pepys had a swallow.http://haut-brion.com/chb/chbframeset.htm

vincent   Link to this

"...a lady spit..." Popular until a fine of five pound sterling was enforced {that could be a weeks wages for the ordinary sort}.
Re: Index of value. lets Pick an Item of importance then and now. May be a horse vs loaf of bread. Many things that had great value then, now are so common are deemed worthless. A portrait by a great Artist is still a special item. [untouched by mass production][Real estate(land) is still unprintable by governments][no! not the language]

Eric Walla   Link to this

Re: Spitting into a dark place ...

... I'm trying to look for clues as to the cost of Sam's theatre ticket. It would seem to me that the ability to be "sitting behind in a dark place" would be putting him in a box (thus more expensive than before), but on the other hand he may have sat in a dark place so no one else would see him getting by on the cheap! The question about with this interpretation is whether there WERE any out-of-the-way dark places among the lowest cost seats ...

The investigation continues.

dirk   Link to this

"if spitting was accepted behaviour?"

Spitting was certainly accepted behaviour, but spitting on somebody was of course not considered a polite thing to do. There is a cute reference to a historical "spitting problem" on the website of the Church of St Mary, Welshpool:
"... the gallery was still in situ in 1737 when it 'was alleged that a great number of the very common sort of people sit in it (under the pretence of psalm singing) who run up and down there; some of them spitting upon the people's heads below'"
See:
http://www.cpat.demon.co.uk/projects/longer/chu...

Spitting would become an even more serious problem when the use of tobacco (smoking AND chewing!) became more generalised. Sailors reputedly became the worst "spitters"...

ssdfroeramsdflersafosofslaerosjrfer   Link to this

I don't think he was in a box. Indoor theatres were lit by candles and the lighting was uneven, so some parts of the audience were darker than others.

language hat   Link to this

claret:
The OED says (or rather said in the late 19th century -- note the appalling last phrase!):
"A name originally given (like F. vin clairet) to wines of yellowish or light red colour, as distinguished alike from 'red wine' and 'white wine'; the contrast with the former ceased about 1600, and it was apparently then used for red wines generally, in which sense it is still, or was recently, dial[ectal]... Now applied to the red wines imported from Bordeaux, generally mixed with Benicarlo or some full-bodied French wine."

This was a period of rapid change in the French wine industry; I'll add some material on this to the wine page:
http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/309/

Ruben   Link to this

Sppiting:
I remember, in the 1950' signs asking not to sppit on the floor (in public places). Instead, there were special vessels in a corner.

Grahamt   Link to this

Spitting images:
Spitting in public was first proscribed in the 1880/90's when its link with the spread of tuberculosis became known. (1882) I was told in the 1960s at school that it was the primary vector of TB in Victorian times (and probably before) especially in winter. The infected sputum hitting a sub-zero pavement/sidewalk would instantly freeze, preserving the bacteria. It would then be carried indoors on people's shoes, where the heat of the house would reactivate the bacteria and evaporate the sputum into the atmosphere. Long Victorian/Edwardian dresses would also pick up the sputum as they swept the pavement/sidewalk - nice. TB, or Consumption, seems to be a Victorian, or industrial revolution, disease: rat flea spread plague appears to be more important in the 17th century.

Rainer Doehle   Link to this

Gibbeting

Like drawing and quartering, this is another pre-enlightenment aspect of 17th century jurisdiction. Made me think of the notorious Cadaver Synod when Pope Stephen VI ordered the corpse of his predecessor Formosus to be taken out of the grave and put on trial after which the convicted cadaver was thrown into the Tiber. Displaying the dead bodies of political enemies for reasons of deterrence and not allowing them a decent burial is an age old practice, cf. Creon and Polyneices. The last case of gibbeting in Britain took place in 1832.

Neil Benson   Link to this

You give up your "fancy" too easily! If a Mr. Lynch arrived from Ireland - as he did - to create a vineyard near the town of Bages in the late 17th Century, I am entirely comfortable with the thought that his contemporary compatriot, Mr. O'Brien, achieved a similar distinction.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Château Haut-Brion
Although grapes are thought to have been grown on the property since Roman times, the earliest document indicating cultivation of a parcel of land dates from 1423. The property was bought by Jean de Ségur in 1509, and in 1525 was owned by the admiral Philippe de Chabot.

The estate Château Haut-Brion dates back to April 1525 when Jean de Pontac married Jeanne de Bellon, the daughter of the mayor of Libourne and seigneur of Hault-Brion, who brought to him in her dowry the land. In 1533 bought the mansion of Haut-Brion, while construction of the château was begun in 1549.

1649, Lord Arnaud III de Pontac became owner of Haut-Brion, and the wine's growing popularity began in earnest. The first records of Haut-Brion wine found in the wine cellar ledger of the English king Charles II in 1660. During the years 1660 and 1661, 169 bottles of the "wine of Hobriono" were served at the king's court. Indeed, as Prof. Charles Ludington stated in his article, "The re-establisment of a royal court and of court culture generally required an increase in luxury goods. This demand inspired Pontac to launch the prototype of top-growth claret in London. The wine was called Haut-Brion, after the name of the estate from which it came."

Samuel Pepys wrote in The Diarist, having tasted the wine at Royal Oak Tavern on April 10, 1663, to have "drank a sort of French wine called Ho Bryen that hath a good and most particular taste I never met with". Pepys provided what Prof. Ludington called "the first tasting note of Haut-Brion".

Therefore both Charles II's cellar book and Pepys' note "provide the first mention in any language of estate-named claret and are among the many proofs that Haut-Brion was created specifically for the English market."[3] Pontac went even further in developing the notoriety of his wine: "By improving and "branding" a product, [...] he created and named a wine that came from a small, circumscribed area of land for the purpose of enhancing its value in t he minds and on the palates of discerning English customers." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ch%C3%A2teau_Haut...

Bill   Link to this

"a pint of claret"

CLARET [Clairet, F. of Clarus, L. clear] a general Name for the red Wines of France.
---An Universal Etymological English Dictionary. N. Bailey, 1675.

joe fulm   Link to this

I see SP has changed from referring to local man 'Oliver' (Dec 4th last when Parliament decreed to dig up Cromwell and his comrades to mutilate them), to 'Cromwell' in today's entry. Despite being from the same locale Sam has a career to expedite and being too familiar with Republic traitors won't fill the carafe with good sack.

Sasha Clarkson   Link to this

Until the end of the diaries, Pepys continues to use 'Oliver' as well as 'Cromwell', and even 'the late Protector' to denote Cromwell in his diary. He's more likely to use 'Cromwell' if associating him with other Commonwealth men as today, or if reporting what others say.

joe fulm   Link to this

Thanks for the info

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