Thursday 5 November 1663

Lay long in bed, then up, called by Captain Cocke about business of a contract of his for some Tarre, and so to the office, and then to Sir W. Pen and there talked, and he being gone came Sir W. Warren and discoursed about our business with Field, and at noon by agreement to the Miter to dinner upon T. Trice’s 40s., to be spent upon our late agreement. Here was a very poor dinner and great company. All our lawyers on both sides, and several friends of his and some of mine brought by him, viz., Mr. Moore, uncle Wight, Dr. Williams, and my cozen Angier, that lives here in town, who after dinner carried me aside and showed me a letter from his poor brother at Cambridge to me of the same contents with that yesterday to me desiring help from me. Here I was among a sorry company without any content or pleasure, and at the last the reckoning coming to above 40s. by 15s., he would have me pay the 10s. and he would pay the 5s., which was so poor that I was ashamed of it, and did it only to save contending with him. There, after agreeing a day for him and I to meet and seal our agreement, I parted and home, and at the office by agreement came Mr. Shales, and there he and I discourse till late the business of his helping me in the discovery of some arrears of provisions and stores due to the stores at Portsmouth, out of which I may chance to get some money, and save the King some too, and therefore I shall endeavour to do the fellow some right in other things here to his advantage between Mr. Gauden and him. He gone my wife and I to her arithmetique, in which she pleases me well, and so to the office, there set down my Journall, and so home to supper and to bed. A little troubled to see how my family is out of order by Will’s being there, and also to hear that Jane do not please my wife as I expected and would have wished.

21 Annotations

Terry F   Link to this

Today's theme - Pepys making more than just his salary

The appointments with Sir W. Warren and Mr. Shales appear to have to do with acting on the conclusion he drew when he reviewed his situation at the end of last month, 5 days ago.

31 October 1663 - "I must look about me to get something more than just my salary, or else I may resolve to live well and die a beggar." http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1663/10/31/

I gather Sir W. Warren is the one with whom Pepys agreed to split the extra cost of the dinner unevenly, perhaps in part to secure more of his part in the agreement on timber they are to conclude.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"A little troubled to see how my family is out of order by Will's being there..."

Our alpha male getting some challenge from the junior male of the pride? Just what is Will up to?

Hmmn. Will out of order, Jane (Gentleman) not pleasing Bess...After what seems (from the "as I expected and would have wished...") an effort by Sam to set her back on track. I wonder if Will and Jane are carrying on backstairs, given their rebelling against milord and milady Pepys in concert.

cum salis grano   Link to this

There be fireworks in house of Peeps but no celebration of Guye and his act and his failure to remove the House of P. building back a while under Scots James VI and I of NUK on this date.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

It was that cheapskate Tom Trice who fussed over 15s, Terry. I'd imagine a magnate like Sir William Warren wouldn't be caught dead at such a bargain-rate banquet.

And if he had come along, Sam would've been turning several shades of pale at the stingy, third-rate feast.

"So...This is what they eat in such places nowadays." Sir William eyes the glop plopped on his plate by a passing surly-looking waitress in filthly outfit. "While it looks...Delectable...I believe I'll stick to the bread and whatever this is that I'm trying to drink."

"Miss, more bread." Sam waves. "I hope Sir Will you do understand. Mr. Trice is a country gentleman, a poor relation and this little lunch is just..."

"Here, who's gone and called for more bread? Tis tuppence here for extra bread." Trice looks down the table. "This meal was to be 40 shillings, no more. Whoever ordered the bread best look to cover it himself, I'm damned well not made of money, you know."

Sam rubs forehead vigorously...

"Quite all right. We don't require more bread." Warren politely waves the frowning girl off.

"Well, that's more like it. No need for you and your friends to squeeze a man, Sam Pepys. Do we have enough on the ale for one more round, Miss? I'd like to make a toast."

"Only enough for half the table, sir. Unless you'd care to..."

"No matter, no matter...Lets just pour half back and send round." Trice pours half his mug back into the girl's pitcher. "Lets not be greedy now, there Moore." he eyes Mr. Moore whom the girl is standing by...Who frowns but pours half back.

Sam now suffering from a splitting headache...

Though given the food and drink not quite sure that it's entirely due to extreme embarassment...

Terry F   Link to this

That it's Tom Trice who's so "poor" that he won't go the full 15s makes sense, Robert. Then the "agreement" that's to be concluded - "lawyers on both sides, and several friends of his and some of mine" present for the negotiations - will be the last of the Trice's part of Uncle Robert's Will's conundra?!

Paul Chapin   Link to this

great company/sorry company

The "great" here means in numbers, not quality, which Sam goes on to call "sorry."

alanB   Link to this

Is it just me or do these arithmetique lessons seem somewhat placcid affairs? It is territory that I could not envisage my spouse and I surviving very long. I suspect Sam makes light of the domestic disharmony that must ensue. There is a cry from Ken Dodd (anglo comedian)that comes to mind and I now suspect he lifted directly from Bess - "Keep your hair on, or else I'll marmalize you" About sums up Bess' new found skills!

language hat   Link to this

"Is it just me or do these arithmetique lessons seem somewhat placcid affairs?"

Not sure what you mean by "placcid" (flaccid? placid?), but every couple has its own pastimes, which others may consider odd. I'm currently reading my wife Doughty's Travels in Arabia Deserta, which you might consider intolerably long-winded and incomprehensible. To each his own.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

I think in trying to be fair and morally relative we may forget that there was an understanding even in the 17th century that slavery was wrong and exploitive and that there was considerable debate on the issue (which included the matter of indentured servants and debtors as well) with the moneyed and powerful interests in favor winning out for a time. One could easily argue the horrors of the 20th century could be dismissed as due to the nature of the times-the aftermath of WWI, the racial views of much of the century, the belief that economic science could if severely applied transcend human greed and lust for power. I'm not saying we should judge Sam's era harshly by our own standards but we can still remember that these things were recognized as evil and wrong at the time and that's it's important to understand why they were allowed to occur in spite of that. I'm sure future societies reading these annotations (if any) will wonder at how we could allow sweatshops, massive pollution of the underdeveloped world, bloody military invasions of countries not directly responsible for terrorist attacks, etc, etc, etc. They would be wrong to completely dismiss these things as solely due to the nature of our times. It's as important to understand why any society fails on moral levels as it is to understand economic and military failure.

That said, I'm sure poor Catherine was not responsible for starting the slave trade. Though one might wonder why a pious Catholic in a position like hers did not feel a need to speak out against it. Understanding that helps us to understand the times and human fraility (for example, poor Colin Powell torn between loyalty and the truth making the best compromise he can with himself will no doubt fascinate historians of this era.) better.

jeannine   Link to this

Boring Math Lessons???

Our Sam taught his Beth arithmetic
Some would think she was bored til made sick
He didn't teach her to count
Or to balance his account
They never got past 36-28-36!

Pedro   Link to this

I think in trying to be fair.

Robert, should your comment be on November 4th?

A. De Araujo   Link to this

"massive pollution of the undevelloped world"
You gotta be kidding! The USA contributes the most in polluting the atmosphere and Bush wont sign the Kyoto Agreement.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Not meant to be taken as political Pedro, I simply mean we have faults and that future generations would be wrong to be assume that we don't recognize them.

A De Araujo, I meant the exploitive pollution of the third world by the first in general as opposed to the US' fouling of its own and others' yard. You are welcome to add US home pollution to my etc, etc list. But these are unimportant and again I mean that we have our own sins, we recognize them and the future should realize that. To understand us as well as Sam's time, the future will have to ask why did we do what we did knowing it was wrong. Were we weak? Cowardly? Foolish? Indifferent? Too comfortable? I don't believe those of Sam's era don't recognize a wrong in slavery but it's not enough to move them enough to oppose it. The question is why? Are the powerful too able to silence opposition? Are those who might speak indifferent? Foolish? Too comfortable? And the reason we ask the question is in hopes we might not make the same mistake again. I live in Georgia. I live around people some of whom within the last fifty years committed atrocious acts including dragging innocent people out of their homes to be gruesomely slaughtered while crowds cheered and those who knew they had not had justice stood by or encouraged the killing of an "uppity" fellow. Most at least stood by and said nothing. I can't agree that these neighbors, friends, relatives should be let off because the times were different then. In my work I meet many young Germans and being of German descent myself we talk. I am appalled to find so many are indifferent to the past, insisting that America and the rest of the West are just as bad so why blame Germany... Well, because what Americans do is their responsibility and what your people do is yours... I don't believe that the people of any place or era escape moral responsibility for their actions. And while it's not our place to judge, it is our need to learn what went wrong and at least try to do better.

And there, way off today's topic, I stop.

MissAnn   Link to this

"massive pollution of the undevelloped world"

Sorry to say our Prime Minister won't sign the Kyoto Protocol either - but then he's such a buddy with GWB it's frightening.

Ruben   Link to this

To Robert Gertz
Thank you for your sensible annotation.
I do not think you are way off.
In Pepys time the "nation state" was to be invented.
Loyalty was to your family, your religion (sometimes), your King and your trade or profession.

I do not see the point in blaming one generation for the deeds of the previous one. It is important to understand the past and that includes slave traffic. But in Pepys time everyone was involved in this trade. The Arabs exploited Christians and Black people as slaves. The Black chiefs and Kings traded their own people for European goods. The Europeans did the same.
What we can learn about our own world and use to improve our performance has to include the exploitation of women bodies and the low price you pay for a banana in the US.

Paul Chapin   Link to this

November 4
Robert, Pedro wasn't implying anything about politics. He meant that your posting responded to a thread in the November 4 annotations.

Pedro   Link to this

Thanks Paul, I do think that Robert's and Ruben's annotations add to our debate that is now fragmented.

Many times since the start of the Diary, many have tried to see situations from a 17C standpoint. Here it seems that it in doing so gives an idea that in someway you do not denounce the Slave Trade. My annotation on the Guinea Company was just to point out that Sam's discussion would not involve the Slave Trade at that present time.

If we try to see this from the 17C point of view, Ruben tells us that the Black chiefs and Kings traded their own people for European goods. And from a 21C view XJY tells us of the white Slave Trade in Europe today, trafficking in women and children for sexual exploitation, which is also promoted by their own people. Which is very sad.


Ruben   Link to this

Pedro:
thank you for resumming so clearly what others and myself had in mind.
Still you did not mention the Banana Question, that is people constrained to work for cents in jobs without hope. Usually they live conveniently somewhere else (Costa Rica, Vietnam, Thailand, cheap suburbs of modern cities, migrant workers).
They are as slaves as were the oars slaves in a galley, rowing till they drop dead.

cum salis grano   Link to this

mans inhumanity to fellow man, has , was and is an on going weakness of getting more goodies than someone else.
Cheap [very] labour be always wanted in any form. Robots may help us give up some of our bad ways.

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

"Robots may help us give up some of our bad ways."

Until they rise up to throw off the yoke of their human oppressors!

laura k   Link to this

Thank you

Thank you for the excellent annotation, Robert Gertz. Something has always troubled me about the "that's how they did things in those times, we can't judge them by our standards" point of view, but I was never able to articulate my issue. You have done so, and I appreciate it.

On the topic of robots, all their availability has done is replace human workers and put more people in competition for already-scarce jobs. Robots never get sick, never talk back, and never try to unionize. The solution to the exploitation of labour is not, and has never has been, cheaper labour, whether in human form or otherwise.

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