Sunday 30 June 1661

(Lord’s day). To church, where we observe the trade of briefs is come now up to so constant a course every Sunday, that we resolve to give no more to them.1 A good sermon, and then home to dinner, my wife and I all alone.

After dinner Sir Williams both and I by water to Whitehall, where having walked up and down, at last we met with the Duke of York, according to an order sent us yesterday from him, to give him an account where the fault lay in the not sending out of the ships, which we find to be only the wind hath been against them, and so they could not get out of the river. Hence I to Graye’s Inn Walk, all alone, and with great pleasure seeing the fine ladies walk there. Myself humming to myself (which now-a-days is my constant practice since I begun to learn to sing) the trillo, and found by use that it do come upon me. Home very weary and to bed, finding my wife not sick, but yet out of order, that I fear she will come to be sick. This day the Portuguese Embassador came to White Hall to take leave of the King; he being now going to end all with the Queen, and to send her over.

The weather now very fair and pleasant, but very hot. My father gone to Brampton to see my uncle Robert, not knowing whether to find him dead or alive. Myself lately under a great expense of money upon myself in clothes and other things, but I hope to make it up this summer by my having to do in getting things ready to send with the next fleet to the Queen.2

Myself in good health, but mighty apt to take cold, so that this hot weather I am fain to wear a cloth before my belly.

  1. It appears, from an old MS. account-book of the collections in the church of St. Olave, Hart Street, beginning in 1642, still extant, that the money gathered on the 30th June, 1661, “for several inhabitants of the parish of St. Dunstan in the West towards their losse by fire,” amounted to “xxs. viiid.” Pepys might complain of the trade in briefs, as similar contributions had been levied fourteen weeks successively, previous to the one in question at St. Olave’s church. Briefs were abolished in 1828. — B.
  2. Graft was the only source of income of government officials in the early days of Elizabeth. She established salaries for each office, which made a nice small addition to the graft which continued unabated. D.W.

41 Annotations

daniel   Link to this

"i am fain to wear a cloth before my belly"

it is also hot now where I reside and I often wear cloth on my belly (even when cold!) though I believe that Sam's intension differs to mine.

any idea what he is refering to?

Josh   Link to this

"Myself humming to myself (which now-a-days is my constant practice since I begun to learn to sing)"

Pepys, as Winnie-the-Pooh.

"finding my wife not sick, but yet out of order"

---i.e., the tipping point, when your four humours are deciding whether they can triumph or not over the problem: very well caught, in a phrase worth adopting.

vicente   Link to this

"...which we find to be only the wind hath been against them, and so they could not get out of the river...." It was nature not man that was the cause of the ill wind.

vicente   Link to this

"...Myself lately under a great expense of money upon myself in clothes and other things, but I hope to make it up this summer by my having to do in getting things ready to send with the next fleet to the Queen..." I've never ever seen a skinny quarter master yet.[more cheap toilet seats?]

Nix   Link to this

"the trade of briefs" --

OED:

3. A letter patent issued by the sovereign as Head of the Church, licensing a collection in the churches throughout England for a specified object of charity; called also a Church Brief or King's Letter. Obs. in practice.

1588 Marprel. Epist. 33 Spent thirteene score pounds in distributing briefes for a gathering towards the erecting of a Colledge. 1661 PEPYS Diary 30 June, To church, where we observe the trade of briefs is come now up to so constant a course every Sunday, that we resolve to give no more to them. 1781 COWPER Charity 469 The brief proclaimed, it visits every pew, But first the squire's, a compliment but due. 1820 SOUTHEY Lett. (1856) III. 193 A wooden thing..such as the churchwardens carry about in the church to collect money for a brief. 1836 Penny Cycl. V. 420/2 A brief was issued, in 1835, to increase the funds of the "Society for the propagation of the Gospel in foreign parts".

dirk   Link to this

"i am fain to wear a cloth before my belly" - re Daniel

Cfr. the diary entry for Friday 14 June: Sam (and his contemporaries) are convinced that by feeling cold/cooler one catches a cold. Being all sweaty, one experiences a cooling feeling when the breeze makes the sweat evaporate (which is of course why humans produce sweat anyway).

So my guess is that Sam has put a piece of cloth under his clothes to absorb the sweat, so that it cannot evaporate and make him feel "cold".

dirk   Link to this

"This day the Portuguese Embassador came to White Hall..."

So Sam is giving news from the outside world again! A couple of days ago he noticed that he had been neglecting this, and stated his intention to do something about it...

vicente   Link to this

"...Myself in good health, but mighty apt to take cold, so that this hot weather I am fain to wear a cloth before my belly...." today 'tis the fashion to only have a 'diamond' next to[or in ones] belly button and show the world, your worldly goods [and no summer cold?].

David Quidnunc   Link to this

"salaries ... a nice small addition to the graft..."

It's interesting to consider just what the attitude was of Pepys, his circle and his society toward graft. That annotation in the Wheatley text (#2) recounting 15th-16th century graft suggests that graft was probably either a venerable tradition or something close to it. I suppose it would have been viewed as something like a fee you might pay now for some government service. With that kind of history, graft would have been viewed as the normal, customary practice one would expect to participate in. Nonexistent or low salaries would have meant that the typical officeholder could never have expected to have survived without graft, which would make graft a positively good thing, or at least thought of that way.

In the past couple of days the New York Times article on Mexican police corruption mentioned that officers there often pay for their own bullets. Well, in those circumstances it's reasonable to ask for a tip from some citizen being assisted, and it's reasonable for the citizen not to begrudge it.

And then, of course, just about all people think they're worth more than they're being paid, so the demands for money increase ...

I bet most people were very polite when they approached a government official in his office. Friendly, even. Similar to the way most of us approach our car mechanic, and for the same reason.

Roger Arbor   Link to this

Belly cloth? Vest perhaps? (Those across the pond, would know under another name... but for the life of me I cannot think what it is!)

"Ne're cast a clout till May is out".. May long gone and still Samuel has his 'layers' on.

Rene   Link to this

A waistcoat perhaps Roger?

Pedro.   Link to this

The Portuguese Embassador.

The Portuguese Ambassador, Francisco de Melo a Torres, was also godfather to Catherine of Braganza.

Pedro.   Link to this

Worried of Essex.

On this day the Rev.Josselin says..
...the Quakers after a stop and silence, seem to be swarming and increased..

http://linux02.lib.cam.ac.uk/earlscolne//diary/...

J A Gioia   Link to this

A waistcoat perhaps...?

i say vest, you say waistcoat... let's call the whole thing cloth.

Glyn   Link to this

J.A.Goia - congratulations, that elicited a genuine groan from me (and no doubt many others).

I'm interested that Pepys spelled ambassador as embassador because it seems so logical to me that I'm surprised the spelling didn't survive, i.e. an embassador is in an embassy, or an ambassador in an ambassy, but why an ambassador in an embassy? What's the linguistic root of these words?

I see Sam wasn't long in going back to Gray's Inn Walk to see the fine ladies dressed up in their Sunday best.

Nix   Link to this

Glyn, you echo Dr. Johnson. Here is the OED etymology note under EMBASSY or AMBASSY:

(æm-, mbs) [a. OFr. ambassée (ambaxée, embascée, enbasée), cogn. w. Pr. ambaissada, OSp. ambaxada, It. ambasciata:L. *ambactita: see AMBASSADE. In Fr. the native ambassée was afterwards superseded by ambaxade (15th c.), ambassade, ad. Sp. (see -ADE), whence also our ambassade. (Ambassée, ambassy, is not:L. ambactia, ambaxia, which gave OFr. ambasse, not adopted in Eng.) Commonly written EMBASSY; Johnson considered the spelling ambassy quite obs.; see note under AMBASSADOR.]

And here’s the referenced note under AMBASSADOR or EMBASSADOR —

(æm-, mb?sd(r)) [The actual ambassador, -our, is a. Fr. ambassadeur (15th c. also ambaxadeur), ad. OSp. ambaxador (now emb-) and Pr. ambassador, cogn. w. It. ambasciatore, -dore, and OFr. (superseded by this adopted form) ambasseur (ambaseor, -asseor, -axeur, etc.). The innumerable early variants are chiefly adoptions or adaptations of the med.L. prop. *ambactitor (agent-noun f. *ambactire; see AMBASSADE), but found as ambaxi-, ambasci-, ambassi-, ambasi-ator, -itor; also with initial e and i, embassiator, imbassiator, etc.; varied with crosses between these and the Fr., and phonetic forms like embassader. Of these variants embassador, supported by embassy, was much more common than ambassador in 17-18th c., and was still the common spelling in United States in 19th c.

"Our authors write almost indiscriminately embassador or ambassador, embassage or ambassage; yet there is scarce an example of ambassy, all concurring to write embassy." JOHNSON.]

Ruben   Link to this

thank you Glyn & Nix for the interesting fine point:
In Spanish it is "embajador & embajada".
I looked at the Spanish Dictionary and found that "embajador" is a special envoy and "embajadora" is his wife!
From the Merriam Webster on line dictionary:
"Etymology: Middle English ambassadour, from Middle French ambassadeur, ultimately of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German ambaht service".
French was the language of diplomacy for many years.

Mary   Link to this

"cloth before my belly"

This could simply be the old-fashioned belly-band. Used to wrap babies (against colic etc),women (before during and after pregnancy) and anyone else who felt a need of warmth/comfort/support in the abdominal or lower back areas. Simply a wide strip of flannel bound fairly tightly around the body anywhere south of the rib-cage and diaphragm.

NOT to be confused with the belly-bands used in North America to train dogs not to mark their territory indoors.

daniel   Link to this

Cloth and bellies

well, if it was as sultry and warm in London then as Philadelphia is now, I would find any restrictive clothing unbearable. how did these well turned out folks in warmer climes suffer all of that lace and linen and heavy fabrics? i ask not only about Sam's period but any time right up to our own, men's clothing being very tighly perscribed until, probably, "it happened one night" when Clark Gable scandalously goes without an undershirt.

Pedro.   Link to this

The "Embaixador Portugês"

As he would describe himself.

A. Hamilton   Link to this

graft

Perhaps commission (whence commissioners?) or fee is a more appropriate understanding of the practice alluded to by Pepys. Graft implies cheating the state, e.g., accepting money from a vendor to bill the Navy for overpriced or inferior goods. Pepys is acting as (presumably an honest) middleman between the vendors and the fleet, and a commission is his recompense for this service.

Kevin Peter   Link to this

" To church, where we observe the trade of briefs is come now up to so constant a course every Sunday, that we resolve to give no more to them."

What does Sam mean by this? What are briefs? What does he mean by them resolving "to give no more to them"?

gerry   Link to this

Roger, does "singlet" ring any bells?

Mary   Link to this

trade of briefs.

Kevin Peter, see Nix's annotation (no. 5) above. Pepys is suffering from what we might now call compassion fatigue and is tired of being dunned for charity collections at church.

Ted Serrill   Link to this

Parallel thinking?
"CUMMERBUND, a girdle or waistbelt (Hindostani hamar-band, a loin-band). In the East the principle of health is to keep the head cool and the stomach warm; the turban protects the one from the sun, and the cummerbund ensures the other against changes of temperature..." From the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.

Ted Serrill   Link to this

A 1911 encyclopedia, anyway. Not sure if Britannica.

josh   Link to this

Singlets? Wot, no surcingles? (belly-band for a horse, once upon a time)

dirk   Link to this

singlet

Interestingly, in the 17th c. "singlet" did not refer to a piece of underwear:

"close-fitting garments, covering the body from the neck to the waist or a little below. Sometimes have tabbed waists & occasionally slashed sleeves to show the lining. When worn without sleeves (rather like a modern waistcoat), called a singlet"
http://www.chepstowe.co.uk/clothes.html

Bradford   Link to this

Maybe it was a cummerbund!

Pauline   Link to this

Liberty Vests to Briefs and Singlets
We are so balanced in covering what counts!
http://www.underhim.com/Show_Category.asp?Categ...

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

Summing up at the halfway point of the year.

I'm surprised that no one has commented on the "summing up" nature of this post ... toward the end of it, Sam seems to slip into doing a quick mental inventory of where things stand with him and his at the end of the sixth month of the year, just as he does at the beginning of new years. Another piece of evidence, IMO, that he meant this diary to be a personal reference upon which he could look back in future years...

David A. Smith   Link to this

"by my having to do in getting things ready"
We have seen this before, and with all due respect to my 21st century colleagues, I think it is *we* who are blinded. Imagine that:

1. Sam is working not for the goverment but for a private acquirer.
2. Said acquirer has tasked Sam with getting the best deal possible, and authorized him to be paid a commission (right, A. Hamilton!) equal to Y% of the purchase price.
3. Sam's buyer makes clear that vendors should quote prices net to the buyer, and that they, the sellers, pay the commission.

On those facts:

1. This is a sound incentive comp system for the buyer, because it motivates Sam to consummate transactions rather than to waste time not getting things done.
2. Sam is providing value for money to his buyer, because he is selecting, negotiating, and so on.
3. *Sam is doing nothing improper.* He is not extorting money from anybody, nor deceiving anybody.
4. Sam has the *potential* for a conflict of interest in choosing vendors, but that conflicts is *unrelated to the commission he has openly disclosed*.

As to whether it is the seller or the buyer who's paying Sam's commission, that is in the eye of the beholder.

Lest you splutter about the impropriety of it all ... real estate agents representing home buyers work on *exactly* this basis in the US now.

In *our* era, we have come to associate payment to *government officials* as entirely inappropriate -- even to the point of passing laws rendering it illegal. But that's because we choose and pay government officials differently from how we pay certain kinuds of service-oriented folk.

vicente   Link to this

J Evelyn [on the 27th]notes, that he saw the King at dinner with Portugal Ambassador [note the A] . where was excellent Musique.

vicente   Link to this

If Sam had gone to the Abby, as noted by Evelyn "Dr Wollsal preached at the Abby on 14 Joh: 27: Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." Then he would not have been upset at handing over his share of the requests.

tld   Link to this

...the Portuguese Embassador and "news"

Dirk here has noted that on 19 June, a few days ago, Sam mentioned,"..One thing I must observe here while I think of it, that I am now become the most negligent man in the world as to matters of news, insomuch that, now-a-days, I neither can tell any, nor ask any of others."

I took that line as a note to himself that with Montague off and Sam in a larger, more independent role, he was aware that he should keep things more to himself. Knowledge he may have of his sponsors interests, movements and intents would be of value to others. With his sponsor not around, it is dangerous and inappropriate to pass too much information that might be used in many unfortunate ways without defense.

This is a very insightful and mature thought process for a rising government leader with connections. Every similar type I have delt with in U.S. government shares this trait and process - very receptive of information but stingy with reaction or additional information. Even questions, "nor ask any of others," would tip ones hand on what might be brewing.

Jenny Doughty   Link to this

Is there any relationship between a singlet and a doublet?

dirk   Link to this

singlet & doublet - re Jenny

According to the site mentioned above, a doublet would have been a singlet with sleeves.

vicente   Link to this

singlet doublet french style 1610:
doublet : m. A Doublet; a Jewell,or stone of two peeces ioyned, glued together
Singlet: ascutchm, last, whiske,yerke or ierke with rod, &c.
http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/cotgrave/search/324...

Anglais singlet: modern
doublet: renaissance for a closefitting vestcoat,leadin' to vest-[-coat,-ment,-ee,,-try,-ed interest, -ing,-pocket] or waist coat or waist-cloth [loin cloth] or [vest worn by the female of the species] vorn sleeveless under the doublet.
So what was his little garment absorbing the sweat, so simple? [a waist cloth?]
"this hot weather I am fain to wear a cloth before my belly"
else "subucula" under shirt? or a vestis,-is covering [vestio I cover,] if he so tried to explain that clothe to his readers.

Pedro.   Link to this

"news from the outside world again."

On ocassions Sam's Lord Montagu has asked him what the world was saying about certain things.

Ruben   Link to this

David A. Smith:
I agree with your very clear explanation. May I add that American and Western European companies are expected to do business with the rest of the world by their standards, as you describe them. Many honest folk in other countries do not see this as an advantage, but as an impediment.

Pat Stewart cavalier   Link to this

Belly band, cummerbund : whatever it's called, my (French) husband doing his national service in Algeria in the 1950s was issued with a strip of flannel to be bound round his body at night to keep the cold off his back (les reins = kidneys)

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