Friday 18 July 1662

Up very early, and got a-top of my house, seeing the design of my work, and like it very well, and it comes into my head to have my dining- room wainscoated, which will be very pretty. By-and-by by water to Deptford, to put several things in order, being myself now only left in town, and so back again to the office, and there doing business all the morning and the afternoon also till night, and then comes Cooper for my mathematiques, but, in good earnest, my head is so full of business that I cannot understand it as otherwise I should do. At night to bed, being much troubled at the rain coming into my house, the top being open.

9 Annotations

dirk   Link to this

"have my dining-room wainscoated"

Wainscot or wainsco(a)ting:
(from Wikipedia)
"wooden or other panelling applied to the lower 1.2 to 1.5 m of an interior wall (...) It is traditionally constructed from tongue-and-groove boards, though beadboard or decorative panels (...) are also common. (...) Its original purpose was to cover the lower part of walls which, in houses constructed with poor or nonexistent damp-proof courses, are often affected by rising damp."

A nice example of the modern variety:
http://www.archpro.com/frame13.htm

Sam doesn't mention any "rising damp" problem, so this is probably for decoration only.

daniel   Link to this

Good taste, Sam!

I too have waincoating in my dining room. I like it quite well! Best of luck with the ongoing construction; I sympathize, Sam.

Terry F.   Link to this

Another day about Sam's pre|occupations; about Beth, nought

Mary   Link to this

rising damp.

As the dining-room in question is to be constructed at roof level as part of the newly begun extension project, rising damp is unlikely to be a problem! Sam's being stylish.

Terry F.   Link to this

"in good earnest, my head is so full of business that I cannot understand it as otherwise I should do"-- reply to my preceeding: He IS the only one of the Sandwich crew left to manage the office and the docks &c. at Deptford; and there is the state of his house: overwhelming responsibilities.

Xjy   Link to this

"wainscoated"
I had a quick look at the etymology of wainscot.
From Collins:
[C14: from Middle Low German wagenschot, perhaps from wagen WAGON + schot planking, related to German Scheit piece of wood]
From etymonline.com:
1352, "imported oak of superior quality," probably from M.Du. or M.Flem. waghenscote "superior quality oak wood, board used for paneling" (though neither of these is attested as early as the Eng. word), related to M.L.G. wagenschot (1389), from waghen (see wagon) + scote "partition, crossbar." So called perhaps because the wood originally was used for wagon building and coachwork. Meaning "panels lining the walls of rooms" is recorded from 1548. Wainscoting is from 1580.

Tom Burns   Link to this

"...being myself now only left in town..."

Apparently he's still junior enough to be left holding the bag at the office while his superiors escape the vapours of London in midsummer.

Terry F.   Link to this

"got a-top of my house, seeing the design of my work....the rain coming into my house, the top being open."

I thought I understood what the raising of the roof entailed, but now confess to having trouble envisioning this. Is Sam able to see (visualize) "the design of [his] work" and make like Gene Kelly rejoicing in the film "Singing in the Rain" while looking down through the same opening through which the rain is coming?

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...make like Gene Kelly rejoicing in the film "Singing in the Rain" while looking down through the same opening through which the rain is coming?…”

What an appealing image of our boy. I don’t think he’s learned to dance…Yet…Though.

(Yes, you may slap me for that spoiler)

Now I can’t the image of Sam and Beth dancing around in the rain out of my head…But it has been pouring here in Atlanta.

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