At the office all the morning; at noon the children are sent for by their mother my Lady Sandwich to dinner, and my wife goes along with them by coach, and she to my father’s and dines there, and from thence with them to see Mrs. Cordery, who do invite them before my father goes into the country, and thither I should have gone too but that I am sent for to the Privy Seal, and there I found a thing of my Lord Chancellor’s1 to be sealed this afternoon, and so I am forced to go to Worcester House, where severall Lords are met in Council this afternoon. And while I am waiting there, in comes the King in a plain common riding-suit and velvet cap, in which he seemed a very ordinary man to one that had not known him. Here I staid till at last, hearing that my Lord Privy Seal had not the seal here, Mr. Moore and I hired a coach and went to Chelsy, and there at an alehouse sat and drank and past the time till my Lord Privy Seal came to his house, and so we to him and examined and sealed the thing, and so homewards, but when we came to look for our coach we found it gone, so we were fain to walk home afoot and saved our money. We met with a companion that walked with us, and coming among some trees near the Neate houses, he began to whistle, which did give us some suspicion, but it proved that he that answered him was Mr. Marsh (the Lutenist) and his wife, and so we all walked to Westminster together, in our way drinking a while at my cost, and had a song of him, but his voice is quite lost. So walked home, and there I found that my Lady do keep the children at home, and lets them not come any more hither at present, which a little troubles me to lose their company. This day my aunt Fenner dyed.
- This “thing” was probably one of those large grants which Clarendon quietly, or, as he himself says, “without noise or scandal,” procured from the king. Besides lands and manors, Clarendon states at one time that the king gave him a “little billet into his hand, that contained a warrant of his own hand-writing to Sir Stephen Fox to pay to the Chancellor the sum of 20,000l.,—[approximately 10 million dollars in the year 2000]—of which nobody could have notice.” In 1662 he received 5,000l. out of the money voted to the king by the Parliament of Ireland, as he mentions in his vindication of himself against the impeachment of the Commons; and we shall see that Pepys, in February, 1664, names another sum of 20,000l. given to the Chancellor to clear the mortgage upon Clarendon Park; and this last sum, it was believed, was paid from the money received from France by the sale of Dunkirk.—B.