Thursday 12 March 1662/63

Up betimes and to my office all the morning with Captain Cocke ending their account of their Riga contract for hemp. So home to dinner, my head full of business against the office. After dinner comes my uncle Thomas with a letter to my father, wherein, as we desire, he and his son do order their tenants to pay their rents to us, which pleases me well. In discourse he tells me my uncle Wight thinks much that I do never see them, and they have reason, but I do apprehend that they have been too far concerned with my uncle Thomas against us, so that I have had no mind hitherto, but now I shall go see them. He being gone, I to the office, where at the choice of maisters and chyrurgeons for the fleet now going out, I did my business as I could wish, both for the persons I had a mind to serve, and in getting the warrants signed drawn by my clerks, which I was afeard of. Sat late, and having done I went home, where I found Mary Ashwell come to live with us, of whom I hope well, and pray God she may please us, which, though it cost me something, yet will give me much content. So to supper and to bed, and find by her discourse and carriage to-night that she is not proud, but will do what she is bid, but for want of being abroad knows not how to give the respect to her mistress, as she will do when she is told it, she having been used only to little children, and there was a kind of a mistress over them. Troubled all night with my cold, I being quite hoarse with it that I could not speak to be heard at all almost.

15 Annotations

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

"and in getting the warrants signed drawn by my clerks, which I was afeard of"

He lost me there ... why was Sam "afeard"?

On another note, so begins the saga of Mary Ashwell. Fingers crossed...

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...find by her discourse and carriage to-night that she is not proud, but will do what she is bid, but for want of being abroad knows not how to give the respect to her mistress, as she will do when she is told it, she having been used only to little children, and there was a kind of a mistress over them."

I sense impending doom...

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...at the choice of maisters and chyrurgeons for the fleet now going out, I did my business as I could wish, both for the persons I had a mind to serve, and in getting the warrants signed drawn by my clerks, which I was afeard of."

If the warrants had not been signed by Sam's clerks, it's likely someone might have either noted a lot of members of the "Friends of Sam" club getting plum spots on ships and mentioned it to Mr. Coventry or scratched Sam's boys off and put in "Friends of Penn", "Friends of Batten", etc.

I wonder how the "persons I had a mind to serve" show their appreciation...

"You have my gratitude, Mr. Pepys. Know that I will fulfill my duties as ship's master to the best extent I can for King and Country."

"That, sir, is all Samuel Pepys asks." slight, dignified bow...

("Hewer, show the gentleman out."

"Sir." Will leads the man out...

"Next time, sir, plain brown envelope..." he hisses as the man passes him a large envelope as he heads out.)

Australian Susan   Link to this

We could, of course, assume the best and conclude Sam was being assiduous merely to ensure the most qualified persons secured the postings.

Australian Susan   Link to this

"she having only been used to little children"

Anyone else get a Joyce Grenfell type nursery school teacher swimming into their consciousness?

Will she start getting Sam to blow his nose, ask him if he's done "number two's today?" and tell him he's got to be a good boy and play nicely as he sets off to the office. ?? Sorry, flights of fancy.

Samuel!........don't do that.

jeannine   Link to this

Now, now, Todd, Robert and Susan, how can you doubt for a moment that this one won't turn out just fine. It reminds me of those office bets, where everyone chips in a few dollars, places their bet (on whatever) and the closest person wins the pot. The big question is should we be betting on Mary Ashwell's longevity in days, hours or minutes......

E   Link to this

"in getting the warrants signed drawn by my clerks, which I was afeard of.”

I read this as "getting the warrants drawn up by my clerks (at my direction, with my choice of people) signed by the big boss; which I was afraid I might not be able to push through".

Robert Gertz   Link to this

One hopeful sign is that Sam hasn't yet commented on Ashwell's beauty. Bess seems well attuned to Sam's flutterings and if Mary is not...Exactly devastating...There may be hope.

Stolzi   Link to this

"which I was afeared of"

Perhaps only fearing that the clerks couldn't get them all done in time, ready for signature.

jeannine   Link to this

"One hopeful sign is that Sam hasn’t yet commented on Ashwell’s beauty"...yet!

Clement   Link to this

Beauty of the moment
Sam's past opportunism may illustrate his agreement with Constable, the English painter of a later period: "I never saw an ugly thing in my life: for let the form of an object be what it may - light, shade, and perspective will always make it beautiful."
Though I'm sure Constable wasn't restricting his opinion to the hired help.

A. De Araujo   Link to this

"I being quite hoarse with it"
It is called laryngitis Sam.

Bradford   Link to this

As "to doubt" meant "to fear" in yesterday's entry, so today "to be afeard" means "to be in doubt about."

Joe   Link to this

"...but now I shall go see them"

The suit settled, family ties can be mended. Or at least attended to.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

No, we mustn't let rich Uncle Wight slip through our fingers...

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