Saturday 26 September 1663

Up and to my office, and there we sat till noon, and then I to the Exchange, but did little there, but meeting Mr. Rawlinson he would needs have me home to dinner, and Mr. Deane of Woolwich being with me I took him with me, and there we dined very well at his own dinner, only no invitation, but here I sat with little pleasure, considering my wife at home alone, and so I made what haste home I could, and was forced to sit down again at dinner with her, being unwilling to neglect her by being known to dine abroad. My doing so being only to keep Deane from dining at home with me, being doubtful what I have to eat. So to the office, and there till late at night, and so home to supper and bed, being mightily pleased to find my wife so mindful of her house.


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Robert Gertz  •  Link

Guilt lays its heavy hand upon our boy...

Hmmn...Bess sure seems to be out to win world champion housewife this week. (Unless of course it's only Sam's guilt magnifying her usual devoted efforts.) I wonder if she suspects something...Or has her own reason to feel guilty enough to try and impress the hubs.

Say, didn’t Papa recently patent his device for curbing chimney smoke? I wonder how much “grease” was needed to get such a thing through...

Say a few bottles tapped from the cellar vat, along with a little stash of shillings carefully hoarded out of the housekeeping?

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Aqua  •  Link

sure does smell of guilt: "...considering my wife at home alone..."

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Aqua  •  Link

Invited to The Chasons of LA "...but meeting Mr. Rawlinson he would needs have me home to dinner, and Mr. Deane of Woolwich being with me I took him with me, and there we dined very well at his own dinner, only no invitation,.."
next best place after dining at the Top {Kings] table at the Palace.

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Linda  •  Link

Telephones can be a real intrusion in life, often, but Sam sure could have used one in this instance.

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Paul Dyson  •  Link

My doing so being only to keep Deane from dining at home with me, being doubtful what I have to eat.

Sam, and others, quite often give and receive impromptu invitations to dinner - a great sense of hospitality. Does this mean that their homes habitually carried stocks of food above what they themselves needed and that, in days when food preservation was very difficult, much went to waste? Alternatively, that there was a great deal of rushing around by the servants to provide something at a moment's notice? There is also an inference that a man known for not giving such invitations would lose out in the networking stakes.

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Paul Dyson  •  Link

considering my wife at home alone

Some confused emotions and thoughts here, maybe.

Sam has several times recently spent all day after dinner at the office, presumably leaving Bess home alone for long periods.

He might be worried that she will suspect him of "going to Deptford" for the third day running.

His own jealousy could lead to concern that she will find a "Deptford" of her own to go to.
(Deptfording could be the 17th century equivalent of Bunburying.)

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A. Hamilton  •  Link

was forced to sit down again at dinner

how the crowded life leads to waist

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in aqua alta  •  Link

Re sharing repas. I dothe thinke it be standard proceedure at this time to enjoy the pleasure of dining , even Charles II was known to let people watch him expanding his waste [sic] line. In my Life time, I have seen the change, where the affluent no longer break bread with others, any more. May be it be the crowd that I be in, but days gone by, in northern England [ much rarer in big citie], Spain, Portugal, Italy and Middle East, I was always invited to share a crust.
The Larder was always full so that anyone who dropped in, could share liquid and bait [bite], that was part of the culture, but it has changed considerable amongst Many.
Reason could be many, sharing the talk, food and Drink is rarer now, the coffee shops are full of single seated tables, where at one time it would be very rare for single table, even when one went into a strange place thee were forced to be seated with anothe, so at least a G'day be said to break the tension.
A get together is now special deal it seems.
just one view.

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jan  •  Link

You have heard of the "slow food movement?" I think of this site as the "slow diary movement." We spend much more time mulling, analyzing, picking over, defining terms, clarifing, questioning than Sam ever took to write. But I especially love sharing the musings about how it might have been to have lived then and there. You guys are great. Thanks again Phil.

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Bradford  •  Link

"there we dined very well at his own dinner, only no invitation, but here I sat with little pleasure"

Here? You mean there, at Deane's? And by "no invitation," does he mean . . . I don't know what he means. Deane must have said, "Will you do me the honor of dining with me?" (Help, Mr. Gertz!) Muse on this.

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Robert Gertz  •  Link

It was Mr. Rawlinson, according to link a tavern keeper of some repute, who issued the invite to Sam. Deane was brought along because he was there. The link also indicates the man was an associate of Uncle Wight which may have been the decisive factor in Sam's acceptance of the invitation.

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Australian Susan  •  Link

"My doing so being only to keep Deane from dining at home with me, being doubtful what I have to eat"

Oh that did ring bells with me! Many's the time I have heard with sinking heart my husband issue a cheery instantinvaitation which then has me frantically calculating how to stretch things, what we've got in, etc etc. Or hissing "it'll have to be FHB" at him (Family Hold Back). I much prefer to plan my invitations!

On Aqua's comments on eating alone or not - Queen Victoria apparently gave up the Royal Pavilion in Brighton as a Royal abode because she hated all the crowds who gathered outside the dining room windows to watch them dine: she stopped the practice of Royalty being a spectacle when they fed.
Sharing tables: I was reading a book recently about food on the Titantic, which had photos of the dining rooms - both second and third class had long shared tables - only the first class dining room had smaller ones. The book pointed out that the Olympic (sister ship to the Titanic), after WWI had small tables put in all its dining rooms - changing times.

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Peter  •  Link

Sam "two dinners" Pepys.... My reading is that Sam accepts an invitation to dine with Deane in order to avoid inviting Deane to his, because he's not sure that there's much food in the house. He then goes home and has to dine again with Elizabeth and (out of politeness) not let on that he's already eaten. Interesting that he is concerned for Elizabeth's feelings on this occasion..... but then maybe it was no great sacrifice for a good trencherman to keep mum!

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