Tuesday 1 October 1661

This morning my wife and I lay long in bed, and among other things fell into talk of musique, and desired that I would let her learn to sing, which I did consider, and promised her she should. So before I rose, word was brought me that my singing master, Mr. Goodgroome, was come to teach me and so she rose and this morning began to learn also. To the office, where busy all day. So to dinner and then to the office again till night, and then to my study at home to set matters and papers in order, which, though I can hardly bring myself to do, yet do please me much when it is done. So eat a bit of bread and cheese, and to bed.

Wednesday 2 October 1661

All this morning at Pegg Kite’s with my uncle Fenner, and two friends of his, appraising her goods that her mother has left; but the slut is like to prove so troublesome that I am out of heart with troubling myself in her business. After we had done we all went to a cook’s shop in Bishopsgate Street and dined, and then I took them to the tavern and did give them a quart of sack, and so parted. I home and then took my wife out, and in a coach of a gentlewoman’s that had been to visit my Lady Batten and was going home again our way, we went to the Theatre, but coming late, and sitting in an ill place, I never had so little pleasure in a play in my life, yet it was the first time that ever I saw it, “Victoria Corombona.” Methinks a very poor play. Then at night troubled to get my wife home, it being very dark, and so we were forced to have a coach. So to supper and to bed.

Thursday 3 October 1661

At the office all the morning; dined at home, and in the afternoon Mr. Moore came to me, and he and I went to Tower Hill to meet with a man, and so back all three to my house, and there I signed a bond to Mr. Battersby, a friend of Mr. Moore’s, who lends me 50l., the first money that ever I borrowed upon bond for my own occasion, and so I took them to the Mitre and a Portugal millon with me; there sat and discoursed in matters of religion till night with great pleasure, and so parted, and I home, calling at Sir W. Batten’s, where his son and his wife were, who had yesterday been at the play where we were, and it was good sport to hear how she talked of it with admiration like a fool. So home, and my head was not well with the wine that I drank to-day.

Friday 4 October 1661

By coach to White Hall with Sir W. Pen. So to Mr. Montagu, where his man, Mons. Eschar, makes a great complaint against the English, that they did help the Spaniards against the French the other day; and that their Embassador do demand justice of our King, and that he do resolve to be gone for France the next week; which I, and all that I met with, are very glad of. Thence to Paternoster Row, where my Will did receive the 50l. I borrowed yesterday. I to the Wardrobe to dinner, and there staid most of the afternoon very merry with the ladies. Then Captain Ferrers and I to the Theatre, and there came too late, so we staid and saw a bit of “Victoria,” which pleased me worse than it did the other day. So we staid not to see it out, but went out and drank a bottle or two of China ale, and so home, where I found my wife vexed at her people for grumbling to eat Suffolk cheese, which I also am vexed at. So to bed.

Saturday 5 October 1661

At the office all the morning, then dined at home, and so staid at home all the afternoon putting up my Lord’s model of the Royal James, which I borrowed of him long ago to hang up in my room. And at night Sir W. Pen and I alone to the Dolphin, and there eat some bloat-herrings1 and drank good sack. Then came in Sir W. Warren and another and staid a while with us, and then Sir Arnold Brames, with whom we staid late and till we had drank too much wine. So home and I to bed pleased at my afternoon’s work in hanging up the shipp. So to bed.

  1. To bloat is to dry by smoke, a method chiefly used to cure herrings or bloaters. “I have more smoke in my mouth than would blote a hundred herrings.”—Beaumont and Fletcher, Island Princess. “Why, you stink like so many bloat-herrings newly taken out of the chimney.”—Ben Jonson, “Masque of Augurs.”

Sunday 6 October 1661

(Lord’s day). To church in the morning; Mr. Mills preached, who, I expect, should take in snuffe [anger] that my wife not come to his child’s christening the other day. The winter coming on, many of parish ladies are come home and appear at church again; among others, the three sisters the Thornbury’s, a very fine, and the most zealous people that ever I saw in my life, even to admiration, if it were true zeal. There was also my pretty black girl, Mrs. Dekins, and Mrs. Margaret Pen, this day come to church in a new flowered satin suit that my wife helped to buy her the other day. So me to dinner, and to church in the afternoon to St. Gregory’s, by Paul’s, where I saw Mr. Moore in the gallery and went up to him and heard a good sermon of Dr. Buck’s, one I never heard before, a very able man. So home, and in the evening I went to my Valentine, her father and mother being out of town, to fetch her to supper to my house, and then came Sir W. Pen and would have her to his, so with much sport I got them all to mine, and we were merry, and so broke up and to bed.

Monday 7 October 1661

Up in the morning and to my uncle Fenner’s, thinking to have met Peg Kite about her business but she comes not, so I went to Dr. Williams, where I found him sick in bed and was sorry for it. So about business all day, troubled in my mind till I can hear from Brampton, how things go on at Sturtlow, at the Court, which I was cleared in at night by a letter, which tells me that my cozen Tom was there to be admitted, in his father’s name, as heir-at-law, but that he was opposed, and I was admitted by proxy, which put me out of great trouble of mind.

Wednesday 9 October 1661

This morning went out about my affairs, among others to put my Theorbo out to be mended, and then at noon home again, thinking to go with Sir Williams both to dinner by invitation to Sir W. Rider’s, but at home I found Mrs. Pierce, la belle, and Madam Clifford, with whom I was forced to stay, and made them the most welcome I could; and I was (God knows) very well pleased with their beautiful company, and after dinner took them to the Theatre, and shewed them “The Chances;” and so saw them both at home and back to the Fleece tavern, in Covent Garden, where Luellin and Blurton, and my old friend Frank Bagge, was to meet me, and there staid till late very merry. Frank Bagge tells me a story of Mrs. Pepys that lived with my Lady Harvy, Mr. Montagu’s sister, a good woman; that she had been very ill, and often asked for me; that she is in good condition, and that nobody could get her to make her will; but that she did still enquire for me, and that now she is well she desires to have a chamber at my house. Now I do not know whether this is a trick of Bagge’s, or a good will of hers to do something for me; but I will not trust her, but told him I should be glad to see her, and that I would be sure to do all that I could to provide a place for her. So by coach home late.

Thursday 10 October 1661

At the office all the morning; dined at home, and after dinner Sir W. Pen and my wife and I to the Theatre (she first going into Covent Garden to speak a word with a woman to enquire of her mother, and I in the meantime with Sir W. Pen’s coach staying at W. Joyce’s), where the King came to-day, and there was “The Traytor” most admirably acted; and a most excellent play it is. So home, and intended to be merry, it being my sixth wedding night; but by a late bruise … . [One cannot help curiosity of where a bruise could be that had to be censored out. D.W.] I am in so much pain that I eat my supper and in pain to bed, yet my wife and I pretty merry.

Friday 11 October 1661

All day in bed with a cataplasm … . and at night rose a little, and to bed again in more ease than last night. This noon there came my brother and Dr. Tom and Snow to dinner, and by themselves were merry.

Saturday 12 October 1661

In bed the greatest part of this day also, and my swelling in some measure gone. I received a letter this day from my father, that Sir R. Bernard do a little fear that my uncle has not observed exactly the custom of Brampton in his will about his lands there, which puts me to a great trouble in mind, and at night wrote to him and to my father about it, being much troubled at it.

Sunday 13 October 1661

(Lord’s day). Did not stir out all day, but rose and dined below, and this day left off half skirts and put on a wastecoate, and my false taby wastecoate with gold lace; and in the evening there came Sir W. Batten to see me, and sat and supped very kindly with me, and so to prayers and to bed.

Monday 14 October 1661

This morning I ventured by water abroad to Westminster, but lost my labour, for Mr. Montagu was not in town. So to the Wardrobe, and there dined with my Lady, which is the first time I have seen her dine abroad since her being brought to bed of my Lady Katherine. In the afternoon Captain Ferrers and I walked abroad to several places, among others to Mr. Pim’s, my Lord’s Taylour’s, and there he went out with us to the Fountain tavern and did give us store of wine, and it being the Duke of York’s birthday, we drank the more to his health. But, Lord! what a sad story he makes of his being abused by a Dr. of Physique who is in one part of the tenement wherein he dwells. It would make one laugh, though I see he is under a great trouble in it. Thence home by link and found a good answer from my father that Sir R. Bernard do clear all things as to us and our title to Brampton, which puts my heart in great ease and quiet.

Tuesday 15 October 1661

At the office all the morning, and in the afternoon to Paul’s Churchyard to a blind place, where Mrs. Goldsborough was to meet me (who dare not be known where she lives) to treat about the difference which remains between my uncle and her. But, Lord! to hear how she talks and how she rails against my uncle would make one mad. But I seemed not to be troubled at it, but would indeed gladly have an agreement with her. So I appoint Mr. Moore and she another against Friday next to look into our papers and to see what can be done to conclude the matter. So home in much pain by walking too much yesterday … . which much troubles me.

Wednesday 16 October 1661

In bed till 12 o’clock. This morning came several maids to my wife to be hired, and at last she pitched upon one Nell, whose mother, an old woman, came along with her, but would not be hired under half a year, which I am pleased at their drollness. This day dined by appointment with me, Dr. Thos. Pepys and my Coz: Snow, and my brother Tom, upon a fin of ling and some sounds, neither of which did I ever know before, but most excellent meat they are both, that in all my life I never eat the like fish. So after dinner came in W. Joyce and eat and drank and were merry. So up to my chamber, and put all my papers, at rights, and in the evening our maid Mary (who was with us upon trial for a month) did take leave of us, going as we suppose to be married, for the maid liked us and we her, but all she said was that she had a mind to live in a tradesman’s house where there was but one maid. So to supper and to bed.

Thursday 17 October 1661

At the office all the morning, at noon my wife being gone to my coz Snow’s with Dr. Thomas Pepys and my brother Tom to a venison pasty (which proved a pasty of salted pork); by appointment I went with Captain David Lambert to the Exchequer, and from thence by appointment he and I were to meet at a cook’s shop to dine. But before I went to him Captain Cock, a merchant I had not long known, took me to the Sun tavern and gave me a glass of sack, and being a man of great observation and repute, did tell me that he was confident that the Parliament, when it comes the next month to sit again, would bring trouble with it, and enquire how the King had disposed of offices and money, before they will raise more; which, I fear, will bring all things to ruin again. Thence to the Cook’s and there dined with Captain Lambert and his father-in-law, and had much talk of Portugall; from whence he is lately come, and he tells me it is a very poor dirty place; I mean the City and Court of Lisbon; that the King is a very rude and simple fellow; and, for reviling of somebody a little while ago, and calling of him cuckold, was run into … with a sword and had been killed, had he not told them that he was their king. That there are there no glass windows, nor will they have any; which makes sport among our merchants there to talk of an English factor that, being newly come thither, writ into England that glass would be a good commodity to send thither, &c. That the King has his meat sent up by a dozen of lazy guards and in pipkins, sometimes, to his own table; and sometimes nothing but fruits, and, now and then, half a hen. And now that the Infanta is become our Queen, she is come to have a whole hen or goose to her table, which is not ordinary. So home and to look over my papers that concern the difference between Mrs. Goldsborough and us; which cost me much pains, but contented me much after it was done. So at home all the evening and to supper and to bed.

Friday 18 October 1661

To White Hall, to Mr. Montagu’s, where I met with Mr. Pierce, the purser, to advise about the things to be sent to my Lord for the Queen’s provision, and was cleared in it, and now there is all haste made, for the fleet’s going. At noon to my Lord’s to dinner, and in the afternoon, leaving my wife there, Mr. Moore and I to Mrs. Goldsborough, who sent for a friend to meet with us, and so we were talking about the difference between us till 10 at night. I find it very troublesome, and have brought it into some hopes of an agreement, I offering to forgive her 10l. that is yet due according to my uncle’s accounts to us. So we left her friend to advise about it, and I hope to hear of her, for I would not by any means go to law with a woman of so devilish a tongue as she has. So to my Lady’s, where I left my wife to lie with Mademoiselle all night, and I by link home and to bed. This night lying alone, and the weather cold, and having this last 7 or 8 days been troubled with a tumor … which is now abated by a poultice of a good handful of bran with half a pint of vinegar and a pint of water boiled till it be thick, and then a spoonful of honey put to it and so spread in a cloth and laid to it, I first put on my waistcoat to lie in all night this year, and do not intend to put it off again till spring. I met with complaints at home that my wife left no victuals for them all this day.

Saturday 19 October 1661

At the office all the morning, and at noon Mr. Coventry, who sat with us all the morning, and Sir G. Carteret, Sir W. Pen, and myself,. by coach to Captain Marshe’s, at Limehouse, to a house that hath been their ancestors for this 250 years, close by the lime-house which gives the name to the place. Here they have a design to get the King to hire a dock for the herring busses, which is now the great design on foot, to lie up in. We had a very good and handsome dinner, and excellent wine. I not being neat in clothes, which I find a great fault in me, could not be so merry as otherwise, and at all times I am and can be, when I am in good habitt, which makes me remember my father Osborne’s rule for a gentleman to spare in all things rather than in that. So by coach home, and so to write letters by post, and so to bed.

Sunday 20 October 1661

(Lord’s day). At home in bed all the morning to ease my late tumour, but up to dinner and much offended in mind at a proud trick my man Will hath got, to keep his hat on in the house, but I will not speak of it to him to-day; but I fear I shall be troubled with his pride and laziness, though in other things he is good enough. To church in the afternoon, where a sleepy Presbyter preached, and then to Sir W. Batten who is to go to Portsmouth to-morrow to wait upon the Duke of York, who goes to take possession and to set in order the garrison there. Supped at home and to bed.

Monday 21 October 1661

Early with Mr. Moore by coach to Chelsy, to my Lord Privy Seal’s, but have missed of coming time enough; and having taken up Mr. Pargiter, the goldsmith (who is the man of the world that I do most know and believe to be a cheating rogue), we drank our morning draft there together of cake and ale, and did make good sport of his losing so much by the King’s coming in, he having bought much of Crown lands, of which, God forgive me! I am very glad. At Whitehall, at the Privy Seal, did with Sir W. Pen take advice about passing of things of his there that concern his matters of Ireland. Thence to the Wardrobe and dined, and so against my judgment and conscience (which God forgive, for my very heart knows that I offend God in breaking my vows herein) to the Opera, which is now newly begun to act again, after some alteracion of their scene, which do make it very much worse; but the play, “Love and Honour,” being the first time of their acting it, is a very good plot, and well done. So on foot home, and after a little business done in my study and supper, to bed.

Tuesday 22 October 1661

At the office all the morning, where we had a deputation from the Duke in his absence, he being gone to Portsmouth, for us to have the whole disposal and ordering of the Fleet. In the afternoon about business up and down, and at night to visit Sir R. Slingsby, who is fallen sick of this new disease, an ague and fever. So home after visiting my aunt Wight and Mrs. Norbury (who continues still a very pleasant lady), and to supper, and so to bed.

Wednesday 23 October 1661

To Whitehall, and there, to drink our morning, Sir W. Pen and I to a friend’s lodging of his (Col. Pr. Swell), and at noon he and I dined together alone at the Legg in King Street, and so by coach to Chelsy to my Lord Privy Seal’s about business of Sir William’s, in which we had a fair admittance to talk with my Lord, and had his answer, and so back to the Opera, and there I saw again “Love and Honour,” and a very good play it is. And thence home, calling by the way to see Sir Robert Slingsby, who continues ill, and so home. This day all our office is invited against Tuesday next, my Lord Mayor’s day, to dinner with him at Guildhall. This evening Mr. Holliard came and sat with us, and gave us both directions to observe.

Friday 25 October 1661

To Whitehall, and so to dinner at the Wardrobe, where my wife met me, and there we met with a venison pasty, and my Lady very merry and very handsome, methought. After dinner my wife and I to the Opera, and there saw again “Love and Honour,” a play so good that it has been acted but three times and I have seen them all, and all in this week; which is too much, and more than I will do again a good while. Coming out of the house we met Mrs. Pierce and her comrade Mrs. Clifford, and I seeming willing to stay with them to talk my wife grew angry, and whether she be jealous or no I know, not, but she loves not that I should speak of Mrs. Pierce. Home on foot very discontented, in my way I calling at the Instrument maker, Hunt’s, and there saw my lute, which is now almost done, it being to have a new neck to it and to be made to double strings. So home and to bed. This day I did give my man Will a sound lesson about his forbearing to give us the respect due to a master and mistress.

Saturday 26 October 1661

This morning Sir W. Pen and I should have gone out of town with my Lady Batten, to have met Sir William coming back from Portsmouth; at Kingston, but could not, by reason that my Lord of Peterborough (who is to go Governor of Tangier) came this morning, with Sir G. Carteret, to advise with us about completing of the affairs and preparacions for that place. So at the office all the morning, and in the afternoon Sir W. Pen, my wife and I to the Theatre, and there saw “The Country Captain,” the first time it hath been acted this twenty-five years, a play of my Lord Newcastle’s, but so silly a play as in all my life I never saw, and the first that ever I was weary of in my life. So home again, and in the evening news was brought that Sir R. Slingsby, our Comptroller (who hath this day been sick a week), is dead; which put me into so great a trouble of mind, that all the night I could not sleep, he being a man that loved me, and had many qualitys that made me to love him above all the officers and commissioners in the Navy. Coming home we called at Dan Rawlinson’s; and there drank good sack, and so home.

Sunday 27 October 1661

(Lord’s day). At church in the morning; where in the pew both Sir Williams and I had much talk about the death of Sir Robert, which troubles me much; and them in appearance, though I do not believe it; because I know that he was a cheque to their engrossing the whole trade of the Navy office. Home to dinner, and in the afternoon to church again, my wife with me, whose mourning is now grown so old that I am ashamed to go to church with her. And after church to see my uncle and aunt Wight, and there staid and talked and supped with them, and were merry as we could be in their company. Among other things going up into their chamber to see their two pictures, which I am forced to commend against my judgment, and also she showed us her cabinet, where she had very pretty medals and good jewels. So home and to prayers and to bed.

Monday 28 October 1661

At the office all the morning, and dined at home, and so to Paul’s Churchyard to Hunt’s, and there found my Theorbo done, which pleases me very well, and costs me 26s. to the altering. But now he tells me it is as good a lute as any is in England, and is worth well 10l.. Hither I sent for Captain Ferrers to me, who comes with a friend of his, and they and I to the Theatre, and there saw “Argalus and Parthenia,” where a woman acted Parthenia, and came afterwards on the stage in men’s clothes, and had the best legs that ever I saw, and I was very well pleased with it. Thence to the Ringo alehouse, and thither sent for a belt-maker, and bought of him a handsome belt for second mourning, which cost me 24s., and is very neat.

Tuesday 29 October 1661

This day I put on my half cloth black stockings and my new coat of the fashion, which pleases me well, and with my beaver I was (after office was done) ready to go to my Lord Mayor’s feast, as we are all invited; but the Sir Williams were both loth to go, because of the crowd, and so none of us went, and I staid and dined with them, and so home, and in evening, by consent, we met at the Dolphin, where other company came to us, and should have been merry, but their wine was so naught, and all other things out of order, that we were not so, but staid long at night, and so home and to bed. My mind not pleased with the spending of this day, because I had proposed a great deal of pleasure to myself this day at Guildhall. This Lord Mayor, it seems, brings up again the Custom of Lord Mayors going the day of their installment to Paul’s, and walking round about the Cross, and offering something at the altar.

Wednesday 30 October 1661

All the morning at the office. At noon played on my Theorbo, and much pleased therewith; it is now altered with a new neck. In the afternoon Captain Lambert called me out by appointment, and we walked together to Deptford, and there in his ship, the Norwich, I got him to shew me every hole and corner of the ship, much to my information, and the purpose of my going. So home again, and at Sir W. Batten’s heard how he had been already at Sir R. Slingsby’s, as we were all invited, and I intended this night to go, and there he finds all things out of order, and no such thing done to-night, but pretending that the corps stinks, they will bury it to-night privately, and so will unbespeak all their guests, and there shall be no funerall, which I am sorry for, that there should be nothing done for the honour of Sir Robert, but I fear he hath left his family in great distraction. Here I staid till late at cards with my Lady and Mrs. Martha, and so home. I sent for a bottle or two of wine thither. At my coming home I am sorry to find my wife displeased with her maid Doll, whose fault is that she cannot keep her peace, but will always be talking in an angry manner, though it be without any reason and to no purpose, which I am sorry for and do see the inconvenience that do attend the increase of a man’s fortune by being forced to keep more servants, which brings trouble. Sir Henry Vane, Lambert, and others, are lately sent suddenly away from the Tower, prisoners to Scilly; but I do not think there is any plot as is said, but only a pretence; as there was once pretended often against the Cavaliers.

Thursday 31 October 1661

This morning comes Prior of Brampton to me about the house he has to buy of me, but I was forced to be at the office all the morning, and so could not talk with him. And so, after the office was done, and dined at home, I went to my brother Tom’s, and there met him. He demanded some abatement, he having agreed with my father for Barton’s house, at a price which I told him I could not meddle with, but that as for anything to secure his title to them I was ready, and so we parted. Thence to Sir Robert Bernard, and as his client did ask his advice about my uncle Thomas’s case and ours as to Gravely, and in short he tells me that there is little hopes of recovering it or saving his annuity, which do trouble me much, but God’s will be done. Hence, with my mind full of trouble, to my uncle Fenner’s, when at the alehouse I found him drinking and very jolly and youthsome, and as one that I believe will in a little time get a wife. So home.