Saturday 17 October 1663

Up and to my office, and there we sat a very full board all the morning upon some accounts of Mr. Gauden’s. Here happened something concerning my Will which Sir W. Batten would fain charge upon him, and I heard him mutter something against him of complaint for his often receiving people’s money to Sir G. Carteret, which displeased me much, but I will be even with him.

Thence to the Dolphin Tavern, and there Mr. Gauden did give us a great dinner. Here we had some discourse of the Queen’s being very sick, if not dead, the Duke and Duchess of York being sent for betimes this morning to come to White Hall to her.

So to my office and there late doing business, and so home to supper, my house being got mighty clean to my great content from top to toe, and so to bed, myself beginning to be in good condition of health also, but only my laying out so much money upon clothes for myself and wife and her closet troubles me.


25 Annotations

Gus Spier  •  Link

Are we to undersstand that Will Hewer is taking moneys on behalf of Carteret and Batten is taking exception?

Enterprising young man, that Will.

Alan Bedford  •  Link

"Are we to understand that Will Hewer is taking moneys on behalf of Carteret ...?"

Well, it appears that is what Batten is claiming, and if true, Sam certainly has not authorized it. Our boy does not seem to be pleased. At least publicly.

Terry F  •  Link

"my house being got mighty clean to my great content from top to toe"

Again the irresistible reading of this as a simile of Pepys's recently costive soma now purged, and the "great fitt of the Collique" now at a happy end.

Brian  •  Link

Meeting to discuss Gauden's accounts, then having a "great feast" at Gauden's expense . . . how very convenient!

Kilroy  •  Link

"which displeased me much, but I will be even with him."

I'd like to think that is sounds like Sam wants to hear from others before making judgement aginst Will.

Paul Chapin  •  Link

Once again, Sam flummoxes us with too many pronouns with unclear antecedents

My best guess, in which I have only about 60% confidence, is that we should parse the second sentence as follows:

Here happened something concerning my Will which Sir W. Batten would fain charge upon him (Hewer), and I heard him (Batten) mutter something against him (Hewer) of complaint for his (Hewer's) often receiving people's money to Sir G. Carteret, which displeased me much, but I will be even with him (Batten).

That is, Batten made a complaint about Hewer to Carteret, which annoyed Sam and made him (Sam) resolve to get back at Batten somehow.

Terry F  •  Link

Paul, I read it that way too.

Terry F  •  Link

To parse it using L&M's punctuation

"Here happened something concerning my Will; which Sir W. Batten would fain charge upon him, and I heard him (Batten) mutter something against him (Hewer) of complaint for his (Hewer's) often receiving people's money to Sir G. Carteret, which displeased me much -- but I will be even with him (Batten)[for alleging this about Hewer in a stage whisper in the presence of a full board and Mr. Gauden]."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

I read the complaint as actually a backhand stab against Sam. Will is his man, Batten's claiming (as the officers meet to discuss accounts with a major naval victualer, Gauden) that he is receiving money (kickbacks?)...Ergo his master Sam is taking kickbacks, a charge Sam in the past has, in a sidelong way (Sam's complaining about Batten receiving merchants at his house instead of at the office, etc) made of Batten. Recently Sam's man Warren beat out Batten's man Winter on a major contract and Batten, no doubt furious about that and about saint Samuel's hints (if not outright charges) of corruption is hitting back a little. He probably has nothing hard on Sam and it's not a wise idea to attack a fellow officer directly without evidence but Will may have been seen handling the cash for Sam in such matters (and perhaps for himself as well?) and is an easier target to hit.

This raises the question of the limitations of the Diary's viewpoint. It may well be that despite his constant references to his selflessness in the King's service Sam would not look quite so noble if we were to see him in daily operation with the naval contractors and victualers. I've noticed that despite his old frowning at Batten and Penn for meeting with merchants outside the office he has been doing the same for some time now.

The money for all these home improvements and fine clothes must be coming from somewhere besides his 250L (the 350L minus Barlow's 100L payment) a year...

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"Meeting to discuss Gauden's accounts, then having a "great feast" at Gauden's expense ... how very convenient!"

Sure sounds like current tactics in Washington DC lobbying.

Jesse  •  Link

limitations of the Diary's viewpoint

A good point but I'm not sure I would agree given more than a few 'not look quite so noble' instances being recorded (though admittedly more personal than business). It's possible that if Pepys meets merchants outside the office it's okay because he's on the up and up (i.e. honest http://www.languagehat.com/archives/000975.php ). Penn and Batten though are another matter.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

My point is that the possibility exists that the line between Sam and Batten and Penn is not so fine as Sam would have us think...And (spoiler)

There will be more such hints in the future...

What's really interesting is that here we see a truly capable man who will do good and great things...And whose desire to do good is sincere, I believe...Who is also a fallable human being who skirts the edge of wrongdoing, trying to follow a line and code that sometimes seems to blow with the winds of expediency. How do we know that Sir Will Penn doesn't experience the same struggle-he's a hero who's risked and will risk death at sea for his country. He's probably deeply bored by administrative work and whatever he's taking in kickbacks, etc, it doesn't seem that he's intent on bankrupting the kingdom. Not to mention he may feel he's sincerely seeking the best deals for the nation, based on his years of experience and his connections with merchants and victualers. Imagine his view of young Pepys, the clerk who's shed no blood yet who after a couple of years pushing papers in the office seems to feel fully justified in sitting in judgment on his fellow officers who have. Add to that, that for all his high-minded efficiency and condemnation of corruption, young Pepys is clearly beginning to make his way into the books of powerful merchants and businessmen like Warren and it's not hard to see that Penn and Batten and Minnes might not see things quite the way the Diary's writer presents them.

Jesse  •  Link

[T]he line between Sam and Batten and Penn is not so fine as Sam would have us think

I took your point as being that Pepys was *intentionally* covering up his deeds by omitting incriminating details from the diary. I'm suggesting rather that Pepys clearly saw a line and would have felt, at this point, he had nothing to hide (or need omit).

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Ways Penn differs from Batten

Penn is independently wealthy and a fraud: "Admiral Penn had...been rewarded for his services in Ireland to the Cromwellian Commonwealth with a castle and a confiscated estate in Ireland (1656, Macroom Castle). An interesting fact, which speaks of the continual duplicity of the Penn family, is that the Coat of Arms which appears with his battle armour at St Mary Redcliffe Church, Bristol is a fraud. The Admiral and the Penn family were not entitled to use the Coat of Arms which belonged to the Penns of Penn in Buckinghamshire. The Admiral and his family merely appropriated the Coat of Arms just as they had appropriated their Irish estate and African slaves for themselves and the isle of Jamaica for England. William Penn, the Admiral's son, was to take this appropriation further with his proprietorship of Pennsylvania."
http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/619/#c37167
"Admiral William Penn....loaned large sums to the King's ambitious building programme but, after his death, the cash strapped King could not repay the loan, when requested to do so by Penn's son (also named William). So the monarch offered him land in America instead, provided that it would be named after the favoured late Admiral. Thus the state of Pennsylvania came into being. Its [fraudulent] arms still incorporate those of the man whose name it bears." http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/619/#c81924

Bill  •  Link

“ Here we had some discourse of the Queen’s being very sick, if not dead”

The Queen's illness was first noticed in The Intelligencer on the 13th October, but Pepys did not hear of it till the 17th. The bulletins of her Majesty's health continued till 15th November.
---Diary and correspondence of Samuel Pepys, the diary deciphered by J. Smith. 1854.

Bill  •  Link

"The condition of the Queen is much worse, and the physicians give us but little hopes of her recovery; by the next you will hear that she is either in a fair way to it, or dead. To-morrow is a very critical day with her—God's will be done. The King coming to see her the [this] morning, she told him she willingly left all the world but him, which hath very much afflicted his Majesty, and all the court with him."—Lord Arlington to the Duke of Buckingham, Whitehall, 17th Oct, 1663. (Brown's Miscellanea Aulica, p. 306.)
---Diary and correspondence of Samuel Pepys, the diary deciphered by J. Smith. 1854.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"the Queen’s being very sick, if not dead, the Duke and Duchess of York being sent for betimes this morning to come to White Hall to her."

L&M say she had the spotted fever http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1661/07/03/?c=5... and had a very high fever for about three weeks. Cf, Sir H. Bennet to Burlington, 17 October: 'The Condition of the Queen is much worse, and the Physicians give us but little hope of her Recovery; by the next you will hear she is either in a fair way to it or dead; tomorrow is a very critical day for her, God's will be done. The King coming to see her in the morning, she told him she left willingly all the World but him, which hath very much afflicted [sic] his Majesty....': Thomas Brown, Misc. Aulica (1702), pp. 306-7.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Interesting: Pepys was at Whitehall the day before yesterday with Coventry (secretary to James, Duke of York), and no one said anything about the Queen's illness. It wasn't a secret; the information was already being printed by The Intelligencer. However, this does provide a possible answer as to why two important meetings were booked at the same time: James was half-expecting a call to go to Catherine's bedside, so it was possible the country could have been plunged into mourning at any time. The hurry wasn't in anticipation of a fun romp at Newmarket after all.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"... and I heard him [Batten] mutter something against him [Will] of complaint for his [Will] often receiving people’s money to Sir G. Carteret, which displeased me much, but I will be even with him [could be Batten, Will or Carteret]."

I think Sam 'will be even' with whichever one of them is misbehaving; Carteret didn't discuss this ahead of time either.

Joe P  •  Link

Could Sam mean evenhanded?

Terry Foreman  •  Link

I agree with Paul Chapin (above):

"Here happened something concerning my Will which Sir W. Batten would fain charge upon him (Hewer), and I heard him (Batten) mutter something against him (Hewer) of complaint for his (Hewer's) often receiving people's money to Sir G. Carteret, which displeased me much, but I will be even with him (Batten).

"That is, Batten made a complaint about Hewer to Carteret, which annoyed Sam and made him (Sam) resolve to get back at Batten somehow."
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1663/10/17/#c74280

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

No doubt we'll find out who gets the hatchet job shortly. Of course, Terry has been here before, but I'm not cheating (very much).

Sasha Clarkson  •  Link

Sam may get annoyed with Will sometimes, but he's a loyal boss, and will protect him against attack - especially if there's any whiff of it being a proxy attack against himself. Remember that the Blackborne connection has been used against Will, and Sam, too.

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

Re: ‘ . . I will be even with him . . ’

‘even, adj. < Common Germanic . .
. . 10. b. to be even: to be square or quits; to have settled accounts . .
1661 S. Pepys Diary 25 June (1970) II. 126, I made even with my father and the two drapers for the cloths I sent to sea lately . . ‘

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