Sunday 11 October 1663

(Lord’s day). And was mightily pleased to see my house clean and in good condition, but something coming into my wife’s head, and mine, to be done more about bringing the green bed into our chamber, which is handsomer than the red one, though not of the colour of our hangings, my wife forebore to make herself clean to-day, but continued in a sluttish condition till to-morrow. I after the old passe, all the day within doors, … the effect of my electuary last night, and the greatest of my pain I find to come by my straining …

For all this I eat with a very good stomach, and as much as I use to do, and so I did this noon, and staid at home discoursing and doing things in my chamber, altering chairs in my chamber, and set them above in the red room, they being Turkey work, and so put their green covers upon those that were above, not so handsome.

At night fell to reading in the Church History of Fuller’s, and particularly Cranmer’s letter to Queen Elizabeth, which pleases me mightily for his zeal, obedience, and boldness in a cause of religion.

After supper to bed as I use to be, in pain ….


17 Annotations

TerryF  •  Link

Wheatley's ellipses filled in

"all the day within doors, I finding myself neither to fart nor go to stool after one stool in the morning, the effect of my electuary last night. And the greatest of my pain I find to come by my straining to get something out backwards, which strains my yard and cods, so as to put me to a great and long pain after it, and my pain and frequent desire to make water; what I must therefore forbear." - so L&M.

TerryF  •  Link

And the last ellipsis

"After supper to bed as I use to be, in pain, without breaking wind and shitting."

TerryF  •  Link

Turkey work

Red tapeestry in Turkish style.
(Select Glossary)

"form of knotted embroidery practiced in England from the 16th century to the mid-18th century, but especially in the 17th century. Used for upholstery and table covers, it was worked in imitation of Turkish carpets, which are known from paintings to have been imported to England from the 16th century. The designs were usually of geometrically stylized flowers." http://www.britannica.com/eb/article-9001364/Tu...

Michael Robinson  •  Link

At night fell to reading in the Church History

"Clearly, Cranmer did not write to Queen Elizabeth, and none of his extant letters to any ruler exhibit a notable combination of "zeal, obedience and boldness in a cause of religion."

Pepys, Fuller and an Archbishop
B. J. Whiting Harvard Theological Review: Vol. 38, No. 1 (Jan., 1945), pp. 71-73
http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0017-8160(1945...

Mary  •  Link

The Cranmer letter.

L&M footnote suggests that this refers to a letter from Archbishop Grindal to Queen Elizabeth.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

Archbishop Grindal

http://www.stbees.org.uk/history/hist_grindal.htm

He took issue with Queen Elizabeth, only partly patched up by a letter of apology, according to this site. I wonder if this could be the letter Sam read?

Patricia  •  Link

Ah, poor Sam, unable to "get something out backwards"! But he is a clever fellow—couldn't he just sit down and work it out with his slide rule?

Paul Chapin  •  Link

slide rule

Patricia, that gets the prize for the most unsettling image in a good while! Yuck.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"And was mightily pleased to see my house clean and in good condition, but something coming into my wife’s head, and mine, to be done more about bringing the green bed into our chamber, which is handsomer than the red one, though not of the colour of our hangings, my wife forebore to make herself clean to-day, but continued in a sluttish condition till to-morrow. I after the old passe, all the day within doors, … the effect of my electuary last night,"

Pepys is too much ... all week the staff has been cleaning up after a flood (if you have never done that, it is HARD work), and are so exhausted they had to go to bed early. Sunday -- church for everyone usually (dress up, listen to some music, see some friends, listen to a little wisdom, sit down for a couple of hours). But apparently Sam wants them to boil water and carry it up two flights of stairs to make Elizabeth a bath so she looks fine for him??? Here's Elizabeth moving a couple of (probably) four-poster beds, while he farts his way around drinking his electuary, muttering "my cods! my cods" while eating everything they put in front of him -- and she's supposed to look like Miss Great Britain at an afternoon tea. Sluttish condition??? -- you have no idea how lucky you are, pal! You moved a couple of chairs, changed some slip covers, and read a book. The women (and Will?) are working their fannies off. Typical man!

Sasha Clarkson  •  Link

"my wife forebore to make herself clean to-day, but continued in a sluttish condition till to-morrow."

I take the use of the word "sluttish" as purely descriptive, possibly slightly ironic, but not judgemental. The OED defines the original meaning of the word as "dirty and untidy in dress or habit".* I don't get the sense that Sam was being in any way critical of Elizabeth: he usually lets us know if he's annoyed or upset. He's just observing that that despite it being Sunday, they made no effort to recognize the Lord's Day, as, in addition to Sam's internal disorder, they both wanted to finish the ordering of the house to their joint satisfaction.

*The first attested use of "sluttish" is actually of a man, by Chaucer in 1386: "Why is thy Lord so sluttish?" As the centuries have passed, the word has become more offensive than descriptive, but its meaning in Pepys' time depended upon the context.

As for the comment: "But apparently Sam wants them to boil water and carry it up two flights of stairs to make Elizabeth a bath so she looks fine for him???", one should beware of rushing to judgement based upon an anachronistic misreading of language followed by a specious extrapolation of desires which were neither expressed nor hinted at. Following this by the general sexist comment "Typical man", adds nothing to our understanding or appreciation of the diary and the history it reveals!

NJ Lois  •  Link

It would be nice to know the qualifications of those who take other respondents to task.

Gerald Berg  •  Link

Both Sasha and Sarah have added very fine commentaries in the past. On this particular issue I side entirely with Sarah. I sensed a ironic use of the word 'sluttish' on this occasion. Sam's use of the word has been discussed many a times and his definition is not as ours from all that I have gathered.

john  •  Link

The diary was written in Restoraion London. Their society was both similar and different from our's. I would heartily recommend "Restoraion London" by Liza Picard to understand the environment (perhaps followed by "Samuel Pepys, the uneqaulled self" by Claire Tomalin).

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

Re: ’ . . the effect of my electuary last night . . ’

‘electuary, n. < . . ἐκλείχειν to lick out.
1. a. A medicinal conserve or paste, consisting of a powder or other ingredient mixed with honey, preserve, or syrup of some kind.
. . 1636 D. Featley Clavis Mystica xii. 148 Many simples goe to the making of a soveraigne Electuary.
1751 R. Brookes Gen. Pract. Physic II. 454 The antiscorbutic Electary..is very efficacious in this Disease . . ‘
(OED)

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"Following this by the general sexist comment "Typical man", adds nothing to our understanding or appreciation of the diary and the history it reveals!" -- I give you that one, Sasha. Not all men. But you must admit, Pepys showed his bratty side in this entry.

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