Friday 31 July 1663

Up early to my accounts this month, and I find myself worth clear 730l., the most I ever had yet, which contents me though I encrease but very little. Thence to my office doing business, and at noon to my viall maker’s, who has begun it and has a good appearance, and so to the Exchange, where I met Dr. Pierce, who tells me of his good luck to get to be groom of the Privy-Chamber to the Queen, and without my Lord Sandwich’s help; but only by his good fortune, meeting a man that hath let him have his right for a small matter, about 60l., for which he can every day have 400l.. But he tells me my Lord hath lost much honour in standing so long and so much for that coxcomb Pickering, and at last not carrying it for him; but hath his name struck out by the King and Queen themselves after he had been in ever since the Queen’s coming. But he tells me he believes that either Sir H. Bennet, my Lady Castlemaine, or Sir Charles Barkeley had received some money for the place, and so the King could not disappoint them, but was forced to put out this fool rather than a better man. And I am sorry to hear what he tells me that Sir Charles Barkeley hath still such power over the King, as to be able to fetch him from the Council-table to my Lady Castlemaine when he pleases. He tells me also, as a friend, the great injury that he thinks I do myself by being so severe in the Yards, and contracting the ill-will of the whole Navy for those offices, singly upon myself. Now I discharge a good conscience therein, and I tell him that no man can (nor do he say any say it) charge me with doing wrong; but rather do as many good offices as any man. They think, he says, that I have a mind to get a good name with the King and Duke, who he tells me do not consider any such thing; but I shall have as good thanks to let all alone, and do as the rest. But I believe the contrary; and yet I told him I never go to the Duke alone, as others do, to talk of my own services. However, I will make use of his council, and take some course to prevent having the single ill-will of the office. Before I went to the office I went to the Coffee House, where Sir J. Cutler and Mr. Grant were, and there Mr. Grant showed me letters of Sir William Petty’s, wherein he says, that his vessel which he hath built upon two keeles (a modell whereof, built for the King, he showed me) hath this month won a wager of 50l. in sailing between Dublin and Holyhead with the pacquett-boat, the best ship or vessel the King hath there; and he offers to lay with any vessel in the world. It is about thirty ton in burden, and carries thirty men, with good accommodation, (as much more as any ship of her burden,) and so any vessel of this figure shall carry more men, with better accommodation by half, than any other ship. This carries also ten guns, of about five tons weight. In their coming back from Holyhead they started together, and this vessel came to Dublin by five at night, and the pacquett-boat not before eight the next morning; and when they came they did believe that, this vessel had been drowned, or at least behind, not thinking she could have lived in that sea. Strange things are told of this vessel, and he concludes his letter with this position, “I only affirm that the perfection of sayling lies in my principle, finde it out who can.” Thence home, in my way meeting Mr. Rawlinson, who tells me that my uncle Wight is off of his Hampshire purchase and likes less of the Wights, and would have me to be kind and study to please him, which I am resolved to do. Being at home he sent for me to dinner to meet Mr. Moore, so I went thither and dined well, but it was strange for me to refuse, and yet I did without any reluctancy to drink wine in a tavern, where nothing else almost was drunk, and that excellent good. Thence with Mr. Moore to the Wardrobe, and there sat while my Lord was private with Mr. Townsend about his accounts an hour or two, we reading of a merry book against the Presbyters called Cabbala, extraordinary witty. Thence walked home and to my office, setting papers of all sorts and writing letters and putting myself into a condition to go to Chatham with Mr. Coventry to-morrow. So, at almost 12 o’clock, and my eyes tired with seeing to write, I went home and to bed. Ending the month with pretty good content of mind, my wife in the country and myself in good esteem, and likely by pains to become considerable, I think, with God’s blessing upon my diligence.

19 Annotations

Pedro   Link to this

"and I would fain have stolen a pretty dog that followed me, but I could not, which troubled me."

http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1661/08/07/

'A young brindled mastiff, cropt with three notches on the rump, four white feet, and a white streak down the face, was lost on Fryday was seven-night, July 31. 'Tis one of the king's dogs, and whoever gives notice of him at the porter's lodge in Whitehall, shall have a very good reward.' -1663

(Curious Adverts from The Book Of Days)

JWB   Link to this

"fantastical bottomless double-bottomed machine"- http://web.ukonline.co.uk/lordcornell/iwhr/cat.htm

daniel   Link to this

"and at noon to my viall maker’s, who has begun it and has a good appearance,"

having commissioned a stringed instrument from a luthier before, this ongoing process Sam describes is reliably the same as it is in this day. Some things haven't been improved since the 17th century.

TerryF   Link to this

"lSir William Petty's...vessel which he hath built upon two keeles (a modell whereof, built for the King, he showed me)"

Image of the model itself
http://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/archive/exhibi...

Catamarans

Petty’s letter to Hartlib on education was his first publication but in the next year (1648) he patented a ‘double writing’ machine, which was a device for making copies of handwritten documents. At various times between 1662 and 1684 he designed four twin-hulled ships which were built and tested with varying success. His accounts of this were edited by the Marquess of Lansdowne and published in 1931.

The Double Bottom, or Twin-Hulled Ship, of Sir Wm. Petty (1662–84); repr. and ed. by the Marquess of Lansdowne (1931)
http://www.flyinglab.com/forums/showthread.php?...

JWB   Link to this

"Cabalas & Cabals in Restoration Popular Literature", SK Johnson

http://64.233.167.104/search?q=cache:jcS7UYzKjz...

TerryF   Link to this

The poem alluded to on the site JWB linked us to:

Verses Said to be Written on the Union

The Queen has lately lost a part
Of her entirely English heart,
For want of which by way of botch,
She pieced it up again with Scotch.
Blessed revolution, which creates
Divided hearts, united states.
See how the double nation lies;
Like a rich cot with skirts of frieze:
As if a man in making posies
Should bundle thistles up with roses.
Whoever yet a union saw
Of kingdoms, without faith or law.
Henceforward let no statesman dare,
A kingdom to a ship compare;
Lest he should call our commonweal,
A vessel with a double keel:

Which just like ours, new rigged and manned,
And got about a league from land,
By change of wind to leeward side
The pilot knew not how to guide.
So tossing faction will o'erwhelm
Our crazed double-bottomed realm.

Jonathan Swift lived from 1667 to 1745.. The above was written in 1707 around the time of the Union of English and Scottish parliaments. Swift was opposed to the Union. He saw it as a 'monstrous alliance' with an undeserving nation. He would have preferred a Union of England and Ireland. Such a proposal by the Irish Parliament had been rejected in 1703, and the lost support of the Anglo-Irish community [by Queen Anne] is probably what is referred to in line 1. It has absolutely nothing to do with America. [The 'vessel with a double keel' is a later Petty ship that met the fate described.]

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"He tells me also, as a friend, the great injury that he thinks I do myself by being so severe in the Yards, and contracting the ill-will of the whole Navy for those offices, singly upon myself."

"Yas be wise to lay off, Pepys. The boys is gettin' a little...Annoyed. And when they gets...Annoyed...They can make trouble, capital T. If yas knows whats I mean."

Gee, I'd really want a go-along, get-along boy like Pierce to be my doctor.

Nicely handled, Samuel.
***

"Well, Pierce...I'll consider your kind advice. By the way, congratulations...I hear your Missus is pregnant...Again."

"Yes...and if I ever catch the guy... Always providing he's no one important, in which case he naturally has my blessing. One can't get so bothered about these things one fails to remember where one's interests lie, Pepys."

TerryF   Link to this

Here is the source of Jonathan Swift's 1707 "Verses Said to be Written on the Union" and the comments that follow (above)
http://www.gavroche.org/poetry/classicpoets/swi...

Mary   Link to this

"for which he can every day have £400"

At first sight it seems that a groom of the privy chamber might expect to make £400 per day from his position. However, I imagine what Pepys is really saying is that an office has been sold for £60 which might be expected to fetch £400 in any normal circumstances: "on any day of the week" in colloquial English English.

The seller must have been in great need of ready cash.

A. Hamilton   Link to this

the every day L400

Thank you, Mary. I wondered how a groom could earn such a huge daily fee.

Don McCahill   Link to this

but hath his name struck out by the King and Queen themselves

Any words on what this means? Did the King keep a list of who was "in" and who was "out"?

I thought Nixon started all that.

jeannine   Link to this

“Sir Charles Barkeley hath still such power over the King”

From “The King’s Friend” by Hartmann (Bio of Berkeley).

“ In the month of July the King conferred a Viscountcy in the peerage of Ireland upon his favourite.. ..It seems that the titles first chosen for him were Viscount Berkeley of Drummore and Baron Berehaven. But there were already two Lords Berkeley ….. and it was considered that the existence of three peers bearing the same name as part of their principle titles would create too much confusion. It was therefore decided to revive the original family name of Fitzhardinge, and the next titles chosen were Viscount Fitzhardinge of Leitrim and Baron of Tully, County Antrim. For some reason these too were not considered quite satisfactory, and finally on July 11, 1663, a warrant was issued for the grant to Sir Charles Berkeley, junior, of the titles Viscount Fitzhardinge, of Berehaven, Kerry, and Baron Berkeley, of Rathdown, County Dublin, with special remainder in default of male issue to Sir Charles Berkeley, senior, Treasurer of the Household, and the heirs male of his body. This curious remainder to the father of the recipient of a title must be comparatively rare in the annals of the peerage. To explain the choice of the name Fitzhardinge a clause was inserted to the effect that Sir Charles Berkeley was the second son of Sir Charles Berkeley, of Bruton, of the noble family of Barons Berkeley ‘of which George, Lord Berkeley of Berkeley, who deduces his descent from Robert Fitzhardinge descended from the Kings of Denmark, is chief. “ ( p 102)
Berkeley, now Fitzhardinge, was given a coat of arms. Of note, Berkeley was not an Irishman, but, like poor Roger Palmer (Castlemaine’ cuckold husband), “it was the practice then to confer Irish peerages on occasions when there was some awkwardness in the conferment of the peerage at all… The French Ambassador wrote to Louis XIV on July 5/15: ‘The King has made young Berkeley a lord. It has been kept secret for some time for fear of annoying the House of Commons, which has loudly shown it displeasure’. The displeasure expressed by the Commons was no doubt partly due to the fact that Sir Charles Berkeley had not as yet rendered such meritous services to the country as would in their eyes justify his being created a peer, and partly also to the fact that they shared Pepys suspicions about the nature of the services he was rendering to the King. But Charles II himself did not see why he should not hounour his friend in this manner for the sole and simple reason that he was his friend.” (p 103-104)

Joe   Link to this

"However, I will make use of his council, and take some course to prevent having the single ill-will of the office. "

"Me? Oh no, no, no. You mean Sir John Mennes. Or perhaps you'd like to speak with Sir William Batten?"

Aqua   Link to this

All good politicians keep little black books [now video or snap ]for those black moments when a colleague [future rival/opponent]does a possible political incorrect behaviour that will come in useful for having a future action to go thy way by gently reminding them of that innocent embarrassing event. You start thy history of future adjustments as soon as thee know that thee be climbing the ladder of success.
Documentation has moved society forward.

Bradford   Link to this

"Charles II himself did not see why he should not hounour his friend in this manner for the sole and simple reason that he was his friend.”---(Jeannine's citation)
No, I refuse to draw any parallel with any living person of equally high position who certainly never gave important posts to friends for which they are unqualified---I repeat: I will not say it.

Other humble readers, like yours truly, may have had trouble with the following sentence until a supplementary comma was inserted:

"it was strange for me to refuse,
and yet I did without any reluctancy[,] to drink wine in a tavern,
where nothing else almost was drunk, and that excellent good."

Aqua   Link to this

After being up on the saddle and slushing through the mud and over timbers "..., and likely by pains to become considerable, I think, with God’s blessing upon my diligence...."
diligentia latin for care, or economy
or would he be thinking dignity?

Lurker   Link to this

According to tNA, 730L 1660 = ~50 000/60 000 L these days.

Aqua   Link to this

With 750 quid thee can buy a very nice house in better parts of London Town, same Location today, it be four more noughts. The Navy Office was had for 1500 quid 10 years previous. Money be purchase power, and the numbers given out to day do not equate.

dirk   Link to this

£730 in 1663

As Aqua says, purchasing power comparisons over more than three centuries are dangerous -- as the structure of the consumption package differs considerably -- as do market circumstances (the present London housing market is probably fundamentally different from Pepys' time). Still some indication can be helpful, if used with care -- "cum granis salis".

Different calculators are available on the web, each with its own logical argumentation. They all give different results...

£730 in 1660 would have the same spending worth of £56,042.10 today
http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/currency/def...

£730 in 1663 is worth £74,199.37 today, using the retail price index
http://eh.net/hmit/ppowerbp/

£730 from 1650 would have been worth £43,530.02 in 2000
http://www.projects.ex.ac.uk/trol/scol/calcoluh...

So, somewhere between £43,530 and £74,199 seems to be where we should look for the "real" present value of Sam's £730 -- sufficient to know that we're talking lots of money!

I'm inclined to put my trust more in the National Archives calculation -- so a useful rule of thumb might be "x 75".

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