Thursday 14 March 1660/61

With Sir W. Batten and Pen to Mr. Coventry’s, and there had a dispute about my claim to the place of Purveyor of Petty-provisions, and at last to my content did conclude to have my hand to all the bills for these provisions and Mr. Turner to purvey them, because I would not have him to lose the place. Then to my Lord’s, and so with Mr. Creed to an alehouse, where he told me a long story of his amours at Portsmouth to one of Mrs. Boat’s daughters, which was very pleasant.

Dined with my Lord and Lady, and so with Mr. Creed to the Theatre, and there saw “King and no King,” well acted.

Thence with him to the Cock alehouse at Temple Bar, where he did ask my advice about his amours, and I did give him it, which was to enquire into the condition of his competitor, who is a son of Mr. Gauden’s, and that I promised to do for him, and he to make [what] use he can of it to his advantage.

Home and to bed.

18 Annotations

Alan Bedford   Link to this

"A King and No King" (circa 1611) is a Beaumont and Fletcher play, considered one of the masterpieces of their collaboration. Some information on Beaumont: http://search.eb.com/shakespeare/micro/58/62.html

and Fletcher: http://search.eb.com/shakespeare/micro/211/91.html

Here's a quote:
"It shew'd discretion, the best part of valor."

Here's the complete text of the play: http://www.ex.ac.uk/~pellison/BF/noking/framese...

Bradford   Link to this

"with Mr. Creed to an alehouse, where he told me a long story of his amours at Portsmouth to one of Mrs. Boat's daughters, which was very pleasant.” —-
“with him to the Cock alehouse at Temple Bar, where he did ask my advice about his amours, and I did give him it”.
Creed and Love? Who’d have thunk it? But he knew where to go for Cupid’s counsel.

Susan   Link to this

An earlier link gave us more information about Mr Gauden (later Sir Dennis Gauden). His old home is now a school for children with special needs. Link to website with map, v. small aerial view and small picture of the house
http://www.treloar.org.uk/school/index2.html

vincent   Link to this

I wonder what the advice was?
"...where he did ask my advice about his amours, and I did give him it..."

one thought from Plautus , Persa, 1-2
Qui amans egens ingressus est princeps in Amoris vias, superavit aerumis suis aerumnas Herculi.
Have money , no money [empy purse]is taking on a huge task , my version.

Mary   Link to this

.. to have my hand to all the bills ..

L&M notes that the Clerk to the Acts had performed these duties in former times, but that as the business grew in volume they had been delegated to others. The 'Admiral's Instructions' of 1662 were to give the Clerk power of supervision over the works

Emilio   Link to this

"he did ask my advice . . . and I did give him it"

The way I read it, his advice was simply to find out about the competition, which Sam then courteously offered to do for him. I imagine the puritanical Creed coming to Sam, in love perhaps for the first time, and completely flummoxed by it. He needs someone to start him off at square one ("So she has another suitor? What do you know about him?"), and Sam is an excellent one to boil things down to their practical essentials.

I also imagine Sam is delighted to have such an intimate window into Creed's life, and happy to take part in moving things along. Tomalin describes (pp. 168-171) how he will later be in heaven when he's entrusted with the preparations for Mrs. Jem's wedding.

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

"It shew'd discretion, the best part of valor." From A King and no King (1611)

cf:

“The better part of valor is discretion, in the which better part I have saved my life.”
William Shakespeare: Falstaff, in Henry IV, Part 1, act 5, sc. 4, l. 119-20. (1596/7 (?))

I wonder whether this was already a common Elizabethan saw when Shakespeare put it into Sir JOhn Falstaff’s mouth? Possibly with a classical origin?

Brad W   Link to this

Discretion and valor....I wonder whether this was already a common Elizabethan saw when Shakespeare put it into Sir JOhn Falstaff's mouth? Possibly with a classical origin?

Like so many of Falstaff’s lines, I always thought this one was meant to be comedic. To me discretion, the ability to make careful and subtle decisions, is way too contemplative an activity to be associated with courage under fire, which Sir John was discussing.

Besides, in several plays, Falstaff shows himself to be an utter coward, though clever in excusing himself about it, to himself and others. Thus his opinion about valor in this case could probably be counted on to serve as justification for his actions, not as true wisdom.

I’d put this line up there with “This above all, to thine own self be true, and it shall follow as the night unto the day, thou can’st be false to any man,” as one of the most commonly misunderstood Shakespearean lines of all time. Interesting that other playwrights were stealing it as soon at 1611. The context would tell us if they understood it or not.

vincent   Link to this

"…It shew'd discretion, the best part of valor…"
remember the "Times" Free speech is yet to be freely used. Political spectrum runs from extreem, Only the king has the answer to HE is the devil incarnate and for a whisp[h]er, thee would and could be spending your time as a guest of the King. As for Religion many were shopped and chopped. So discretion was definitely the best course of action.

Alan Bedford   Link to this

"It shew'd discretion, the best part of valor."

Hardly a surprise that this line would be similar to Shakespeare, since Fletcher had collaborated with Shakespeare on plays for Shakespeare’s company, The King’s Men.

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

re: Creed and Sam

I find it interesting that these rivals have gotten so close lately. More evidence of Sam's growing self-confidence, perhaps?

Mary   Link to this

Creed and Sam

One possible reason for their recent closeness is that Creed is employing the well-worn political tactic of trying to get yourself into better books with your professional rival by seeking help with a personal and intimate matter. It's a form of flattery that doesn't always work, but can be useful.

The Bishop   Link to this

Almost all Elizabethan writers - including Shakespeare - filled out their books with well-known maxims, usually drawn from classical sources. It wasn't considered unusual. Many insights attributed to Shakespeare were in fact commonplaces that he was expressing anew.

Fabbz   Link to this

Väry interesting story about the Samuel Pepys. Väry god skrivet. I fink that he shuld be alive stil.

PS   Link to this

vincent: I don't get it!
How do you get from: "...where he did ask my advice about his amours, and I did give him it..."
To: Plautus "... Have money , no money [empy purse]is taking on a huge task..."

Terry Foreman   Link to this

PS: an Edward Boate was Master-Shipwright at Portsmouth until 1650. Other Boates had high positions in other ports (L&M Companion). Perhaps Pepys is asking whether Creed can afford to romance a daughter of this affluent, powerful family? (vincent is off-line at the moment)

Pandora   Link to this

Does anyone know if this is the same "Ye Olde Cock Tavern" that is still on Fleet Street in a Tudor building?

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Bill's annotation cites an institutional but not a structural continuity up to the 1890's.
http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/2349/#c5...

Log in to post an annotation.

If you don't have an account, then register here.