Saturday 31 August 1661

At home and the office all the morning, and at noon comes Luellin to me, and he and I to the tavern and after that to Bartholomew fair, and there upon his motion to a pitiful alehouse, where we had a dirty slut or two come up that were whores, but my very heart went against them, so that I took no pleasure but a great deal of trouble in being there and getting from thence for fear of being seen. From hence he and I walked towards Ludgate and parted. I back again to the fair all alone, and there met with my Ladies Jemimah and Paulina, with Mr. Pickering and Madamoiselle, at seeing the monkeys dance, which was much to see, when they could be brought to do so, but it troubled me to sit among such nasty company. After that with them into Christ’s Hospitall, and there Mr. Pickering bought them some fairings, and I did give every one of them a bauble, which was the little globes of glass with things hanging in them, which pleased the ladies very well. After that home with them in their coach, and there was called up to my Lady, and she would have me stay to talk with her, which I did I think a full hour. And the poor lady did with so much innocency tell me how Mrs. Crispe had told her that she did intend, by means of a lady that lies at her house, to get the King to be godfather to the young lady that she is in childbed now of; but to see in what a manner my Lady told it me, protesting that she sweat in the very telling of it, was the greatest pleasure to me in the world to see the simplicity and harmlessness of a lady. Then down to supper with the ladies, and so home, Mr. Moore (as he and I cannot easily part) leading me as far as Fenchurch Street to the Mitre, where we drank a glass of wine and so parted, and I home and to bed.

Thus ends the month. My maid Jane newly gone, and Pall left now to do all the work till another maid comes, which shall not be till she goes away into the country with my mother. Myself and wife in good health. My Lord Sandwich in the Straits and newly recovered of a great sickness at Alicante. My father gone to settle at Brampton, and myself under much business and trouble for to settle things in the estate to our content. But what is worst, I find myself lately too much given to seeing of plays, and expense, and pleasure, which makes me forget my business, which I must labour to amend. No money comes in, so that I have been forced to borrow a great deal for my own expenses, and to furnish my father, to leave things in order. I have some trouble about my brother Tom, who is now left to keep my father’s trade, in which I have great fears that he will miscarry for want of brains and care. At Court things are in very ill condition, there being so much emulacion, poverty, and the vices of drinking, swearing, and loose amours, that I know not what will be the end of it, but confusion. And the Clergy so high, that all people that I meet with do protest against their practice. In short, I see no content or satisfaction any where, in any one sort of people. The Benevolence1 proves so little, and an occasion of so much discontent every where; that it had better it had never been set up. I think to subscribe 20l.. We are at our Office quiet, only for lack of money all things go to rack. Our very bills offered to be sold upon the Exchange at 10 per cent. loss. We are upon getting Sir R. Ford’s house added to our Office. But I see so many difficulties will follow in pleasing of one another in the dividing of it, and in becoming bound personally to pay the rent of 200l. per annum, that I do believe it will yet scarce come to pass. The season very sickly every where of strange and fatal fevers.

  1. A voluntary contribution made by the subjects to their sovereign. Upon this occasion the clergy alone gave 33,743l.: See May 31st, 1661.—B

45 Annotations

Kevin Peter   Link to this

The Benevolence sounds like some kind of voluntary tax. I take it that many people gave not out of generosity, but to gain some kind of advantage, like attention from the King. It's a bit like donating to a political candidate, I imagine.

Pedro.   Link to this

Benevolence.

When asked by a follower to clarify the meaning of benevolence, Confucius replied, "Do not impose on others what you yourself do not desire. In this way you will be free from ill will whether in a state or in a noble family"

daniel   Link to this

"where we had a dirty slut or two come up"

we won't find Sam being so restrained in the future; naturally he has his standards too!

Also, Sam is in the habit later of having a monthly summary. Is this the first example of this so far?

A. De Araujo   Link to this

"and at noon comes Luellin to me"
Little Luellin continues to be a bad influence on SP.

Pauline   Link to this

"...by means of a lady that lies at her house, to get the King to be godfather..."
Does this telling make Lady Sandwich sweat because it would be such an honor to have the King as godfather to her newborn Catherine? Or sweat/blush in divulging to Sam the means by which the lady staying at Mrs. Crisp's will get the King's agreement to be godfather to Catherine?

Bradford   Link to this

"the poor lady did with so much innocency tell me how Mrs. Crispe had told her that she did intend, by means of a lady that lies at her house, to get the King to be godfather to the young lady that she is in childbed now of."

No, Pauline, I think someone's going to have to do some real desnonymizing of all these "she"s to convey to us what's going on. No sonargram then to tell you you're in childbed with a girl, much less a young lady (what can this mean?).

Australian Susan   Link to this

"fairings"
Gingerbreads with gilt decoration on them.
Charming vignette of innocent fun with Sam buying glass ornaments to please the ladies.
But he is getting to brood a bit about money isn't he? This is not the Sam of a few pages ago chortling to himself about being 500 pounds clear.

dirk   Link to this

far too many "she"s

"And the poor lady did with so much innocency tell me how Mrs. Crispe had told her that she (*) did intend, by means of a lady that lies at her (**) house, to get the King to be godfather to the young lady that she (***) is in childbed now of."

I read this as:
(*) Mrs Crispe
(**) Mrs Crispe's
(***) my Lady Jemima

Seems to make sense this way.
And supposedly my Lady sweats from excitement at the telling...

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...And the poor lady did with so much innocency tell me how Mrs. Crispe had but to see in what a manner my Lady told it me, protesting that she sweat in the very telling of it, was the greatest pleasure to me in the world to see the simplicity and harmlessness of a lady..."

Sweet Lady Jemina... Sad to see Sam beginning to pull away from such a good influence on him. Pity we don't get Beth's opinion though it sounds like something he'd tell her on getting home.

vicente   Link to this

Has Sam been taking his sermons more seriously ? Do I detect a tad of puritanism in his writing, not use to all this freedom of feminine activity.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...We are upon getting Sir R. Ford's house added to our Office. But I see so many difficulties will follow in pleasing of one another in the dividing of it, and in becoming bound personally to pay the rent of 200l. per annum…”

-Gimme the corner office!

-Hey Batten, I’m the guy who conquered Jamaica, it’s mine!
**
-Oh, is it office rent day? Sorry, Pepys I left my wallet at home…Pay the man like a good fellow, would you? I’ll pay you back come Michaelmas.

vicente   Link to this

"Bartholomew fair" a good account of the St Margarites faire at Southark by J. Evelyn 13 sept last[1660]. In my child hood, faires went from town to town, with all sorts of thrills [deathe ride by m/c]and bands and of course noise, BO, and cheap sugar eats. It brought in people from 20/30 miles around to provide entertainment for all [1 to 100] which was so lacking for the rest of the year. Now of course, everything is so fancy and upscale and has been seen by all on a daily basis by flicker or by gogle box, that very few will participate, only watch.

vicente   Link to this

Just two/three years ago most of the people that are participating in the pleasures of flesh and mind, would have kept it all hidden, they being so puritan in mind?. It is marvelous how one charismatic leader can change the whole tone of London town.

vicente   Link to this

see Pauline's entrey yesterday. today he counts the cost .
"... which I must labour to amend. No money comes in, so that I have been forced to borrow a great deal for my own expenses..." Not much casting of ring in wax, poor pickings.
Teatro Dear? this coming month.

Pauline   Link to this

"...the young lady that she is in childbed now of."
No, Bradford. I stand by my sorting out of the she's and her's involved. Dirk agrees.

Mary   Link to this

"he will miscarry for want of brains and care."

This is why Tom needs a competent wife so badly. In many successful small businesses, it was the responsibility of the wife to oversee the smooth running of the premises and also to keep the accounts, whilst her husband concentrated on the nuts and bolts of the trade itself. (See Liza Picard, 'Elizabeth's London'. This book deals with an earlier period, but points out that, by the end of the Elizabethan era, more women were actually being admitted to Livery companies as successful businesswomen in their own right).

Brother Tom may be a competent tailor, but Sam plainly doubts his ability to run a successful business by himself. Given that Father Pepys has only just managed to keep the business ticking over in financial terms, the enterpise needs better management if it is to show a decent profit.

Mary   Link to this

The Benevolence.

The subscription period for this donation/taxation was to last until June 1662. It was a generally unpopular measure and the money was very slow to come in. Royalists felt that the Presbyterians in Parliament had voted the bill in, in order to burden them specifically with finding the greater part of the 'gift' to the king. The City of London was accused of being very slow to subscribe and by the end of the subscription period, only £230,000 had been raised in total from the entire kingdom. (see L&M footnote).

The Benevolence was not a statutory tax, so could not be enforced by law but, doubtless, people were ‘leaned on’ by the Commissioners to get them to divvy up.

Mary   Link to this

"I think to subscribe £20”

According to L&M, there is no record in the diary of Pepys having subscribed anything at all, nor the do patchy records of the tax in the Public Records Office show any sum coming from him.

andy   Link to this

so that I took no pleasure but a great deal of trouble in being there and getting from thence for fear of being seen.

I think I've been in places like that too!

Australian Susan   Link to this

"successful small businesses"
It was hard for women to be independent up until comparatively recently. However, there were some fields of trade where women were so successful the trade name which became the surname is female. One example is the brewing trade where Brewster, though not as common a surname as Brewer, nevertheless did become a surname. Brewster is the feminine of Brewer. Anyone know of other examples?

Rex Gordon   Link to this

Bartholomew Fair

From Peter Ackroyd's "London: The Biography": The greatest fair of all was held at Smithfield. It was known as Bartholomew's Fair. ... From the beginning of its fame there were puppet shows and street performers, human freaks and games of dice and thimble, canvas tents for dancing or for drinking, eating-houses which specialized in roast pork. ... The appropriately-named Cock Lane, just beyond the open ground, was the haunt of prostitutes. ... It (the Fair) flourished after the Restoration of 1660, when liberty and license came back into fashion. One versifier of the period notes masquerades dramatising The Woman of Babylon, The Devil and the Pope, as well as shows of dancing bears and acrobats. ... And there were always rope-walkers, among them the famous Scaramouch, dancing on a rope with a wheelbarrow before him with two children and a dog in it, and with a duck on his head. ... And there was Joseph Clark, or "Posture Clark" as he was known, who could "put out of joynt almost every Bone or Vertebra of his body and to replace it again"; he could so contort himself that he became unrecognizable even to his closest friends.

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

re: all those "she's" and summing up

Pauline, I think My Lady is sweating at the prospective honor of having the king as godfather to her newborn girl. And Cynical Sam, who thinks it will never come to pass, is charmed by her naivete at thinking it will. Perhaps the friend who lies at Mrs. Crispe's house will make the king an offer he can't refuse? (Perhaps by agreeing to lie with him? Or lying about it?)

As for summing up on a monthly basis, Daniel, it seems that Sam has just begun this practice in earnest. There are a couple of perfunctory monthly summations (see June and Feb of '61), and more detailed summations at the beginning of each year, but this day's entry is the most complete I've seen. Phil might be able to lift such paragraphs wholesale to insert into "The Story So Far" section!

Great entry ... it gives a real flavor of what the day (and month) were like for him.

Judith Boles   Link to this

Am I correct in thinking that Mrs. Crispe's husband was the Archbishop of Canterbury during the reigh of Charles I? Perhaps she has an "in" with Charles II.

Judith Boles   Link to this

Boy, I got that one wrong...name mix up with Laud...

JWB   Link to this

Tom's troubles
Who wants to be fitted by a tubecular tailor. Think of Doc Holiday, the tubecular dentist. He turned gunslinger.

Mary K McIntyre   Link to this

What I would give to have one of those fairings... something so fragile & tawdry, wd be like the proverbial message in a bottle from another time... their equivalent of the glow-in-the-dark Madonna, or snowball paperweight!

Katherine   Link to this

One example is the brewing trade where Brewster, though not as common a surname as Brewer, nevertheless did become a surname. Brewster is the feminine of Brewer>>

Spinner --> Spinster
Webber --> Webster (webber=weaver)
Baker --> Baxter

In the Middle Ages, Brewing, Spinning, Weaving, and Baking were the only trades that allowed women into the guilds.

If the suffix on the last name is pronouced "ster", then it's the feminine of a trade.

And yes, Tom needs a good wife/work partner, back in the day (and still today) a husband&wife team was critical to small business.

A. De Araujo   Link to this

"Bartholomew's Fair"
"appropriately named Cock Lane" I thouhgt it referred to cock fighting.
"Posture Clark" probably Ehlers Dahnlos Syndrome.

Jackie   Link to this

Government went on in this hand to mouth way until a more systematic approach was taken to general taxation. Mind you, income tax is still a temporary measure introduced by the Victorians. Benevolences were never popular - being a "voluntary" form of highway robbery. Richard III outlawed them, but they came back when subsequent monarchs wanted more cash.

Rex Gordon   Link to this

"Cock Lane"

Yes, AdeAr ... I think Ackroyd was joking, sort of tongue in cheek ;-)

vicente   Link to this

'And yes, Tom needs a good wife/work partner, back in the day (and still today) a husband&wife team was critical to small business' [in all walks of life a good PARTNERSHIP [side by side] makes for a good life.]
The female of the species then,was the responsibity of the Father until he unloaded the daughter on to unsuspecting male [dowry required to help with household expenses]. Then when the Old man kicked the bucket then she by law was allowed to run the business, very prevalent in the coaching business.
25 % of females were not married off.
Many females had excellent minds etc., and did not require a mere male for sustenance of mind and body. Religions seem to tolerate the female for duties deemed to be beneath the dignity of the Clothe.
Of course there is no standard for marriage relationship in reality, but it always assumed it was for love and equality and sharing, like father Christmas and presents a wonderful myth.
It is thru the eyes of one male that we see life in the 17th Century. 'tis like all things, one swallow doth not make a standard[summer]. [it is a shame that we are unable to read the flip side of the coin][ I only see it thru my version of life]
Unfortunately 50% of the population were desperate for the basics of surviving. Like to day 1% of population survive on 1000% more than the Orange girl unless she is fortunate enough to meet her prince[King Carlos][literally the odds are better at the lottery].
This Diary is written by a guy who now is in the top 5% income bracket.
So for us lesser mortals whom might have been living then, would have had step to the side to let the rascal pass.

Pedro.   Link to this

"My Lord Sandwich in the Straits"

Presumably the Straits of Gibraltar, and now close to Tangier.

tc   Link to this

...she sweat in the very telling...

I thought only horses sweat. Gentlemen perspire, ladies glisten.

Stolzi   Link to this

"What I would give to have one of those fairings... something so fragile & tawdry”

A good word choice, since this page says that “tawdry” itself derives from the cheap ribbons bought at St. Audrey’s Fair:

http://www.worldwidewords.org/weirdwords/ww-taw...

Australian Susan   Link to this

Income Tax
This was introduced as a "temporary" measure - but earlier than Victorian times. Pitt the Younger introduced it to pay for the Napoleonic Wars. Wonder if Bush is going to wait until safely re-elected and then introduce/raise taxes to pay for his current war?!(to say nothing of Blair and Howard) Plus ca change....

dirk   Link to this

"fairings"

"... special bobbins were bought either as gifts or as a momento from the fair. They were gaudy, and often had many colours on them, but the key factor was a spiral groove that has a tinsel inlay kept in place by a wound brass wire. Springett records that the name fairing was originally a generic name for the "glittering china ornaments, fancy baubles, cheap sparkling jewellery, (which) were all made to attract the unsophisticated boy or girl."
Source:
http://bobbins.lacefairy.com/BobbinMuseum/calen...

On another type of fairing:
"By the 17th century gingerbread-men were on sale everywhere. They were particularly popular at the many large fairs held across the country and became known as fairings. In 1614 Ben Johnson was to write his play 'St. Bartholomew’s Fair’ featuring a gingerbread seller. In the North East of England it became a tradition for young girls to make their “gingerbread husband” and to eat them before their wedding day to ensure future happiness.”
Source:
http://www.kbnet.co.uk/odell/v1jl.htm

Australian Susan   Link to this

"fairings"
See my post at the top of this list - this is the origin of the catch phrase "that takes the gilt off the gingerbread".

DiPhi   Link to this

"that takes the gilt off the gingerbread".

What a great phrase! I never heard it before. Is it common in Australia and England?

David A. Smith   Link to this

"for lack of money all things go to rack"
Not only taxation, but even the fundamentals of a money economy, were in this era very ill-understood. Most taxes levied were what we would recognize as VAT or sales taxes -- direct interventions by government authorities in the gap between buyer and seller, preferably of hard commodities. Levies during wars were made by subscription, impoundment, and a host of short-term fixes.
In the US, with its written Constitution, the income tax was struck down (in 1895) as Unconstitutional and not introduced until the 16th amendment was ratified (1913). The first federal income tax code was only two pages long ...

David A. Smith   Link to this

"emulacion, poverty, and the vices of drinking, swearing, and loose amours"
Of course, our Sam is himself not blameless in his indulgences, but as far as we can tell, he has yet to go 'too far' -- that is, in none of his excesses is he the worse for wear a week later.
As John Selden (1584-1654) said, "'Tis not the drinking that is to be blamed, but the excess."

john lauer   Link to this

tc: The version I know ends with "ladies merely feel the heat.".

Mary   Link to this

No, No! Ladies only glow.

dirk   Link to this

Income tax

Just a practical note. Income tax as we know it, would not have been possible in Sam's time. The whole system of IT is based on the fact that the income declaration on which the system is based can somewhow be checked against data provided by other sources. That requires a degree of administrative finesse which I don't think existed in Sam's day.

Australian Susan   Link to this

"to take the gilt off the gingerbread"
"To destroy the illusion: to appropriate all the fun or profit and leave the dull base behind."
[Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable.]

Pedro.   Link to this

"to take the gilt off the gingerbread"

Gingerbread or Gingerbreadwork is the gilded caring and scroll work which decorated the hulls of larger sailing ships, more notably warships and East Indiamen, during the 15th to 18th centuries. It can be seen today on the stern of Nelson’s Victory at Portsmouth and the Cutty Sark at Greenwich. ‘To take the gilt off the gingerbread’ was probably the master gunner’s objective during an engagement.#

http://www.red-duster.co.uk/DYK6.htm

Log in to post an annotation.

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