Wednesday 2 December 1663

My wife troubled all last night with the toothache and this morning. I up and to my office, where busy, and so home to dinner with my wife, who is better of her tooth than she was, and in the afternoon by agreement called on by Mr. Bland, and with him to the Ship a neighbour tavern and there met his antagonist Mr. Custos and his referee Mr. Clarke a merchant also, and begun the dispute about the freight of a ship hired by Mr. Bland to carry provisions to Tangier, and the freight is now demanded, whereas he says that the goods were some spoiled, some not delivered, and upon the whole demands 1300l. of the other, and their minds are both so high, their demands so distant, and their words so many and hot against one another that I fear we shall bring it to nothing. But however I am glad to see myself so capable of understanding the business as I find I do, and shall endeavour to do Mr. Bland all the just service I can therein. Here we were in a bad room, which vexed me most, but we. meet at another house next. So at noon I home and to my office till 9 o’clock, and so home to my wife to keep her company, arithmetique, then to supper, and to bed, she being well of her tooth again.

9 Annotations

Bradford  •  Link

There's nothing to cure toothache like adding to find out how much more you're worth this month than last. But is Sam likely to share that particular computation with Liz? Discuss.

Terry F  •  Link

Mr. Bland vs. Mr. Custis

Cf. 25 November "Mr. Bland came to me and had good discourse, and he has chose me a referee for him in a business,"

A "referee" in this context seems to be something like a "second" in a duel, since Mr. Custis has Mr. Clerke as his referee.

cumgranosalis  •  Link

Referee [f. REFER v. + -EE1.]
2. Law. a. A person to whom (either alone or with others) a dispute between parties is referred by mutual consent; an arbitrator.

1. a. One appointed by Parliament to examine and report on applications for monopolies or letters patent. Obs.

1621 in Crt. & Times Jas. I (1848) II. 235 The Lords and Commons met in the afternoon, to consult what punishment to inflict upon monopolists, and the referees, who are in chiefest fault.

1640 Resol. Ho. Comm. in Rushw. Hist. Coll. III. (1692) I. 53 That the Patent for the Monopoly of Tobacco be forthwith brought into this House; And that the Referrees, to whom the Legality of this Patent was referred, attend the said Committee at the same time.

1663 in Milton's Wks. (1738) I. p. lxxxv, We have received your Letter..together with several Petitions,..all which we likewise transmitted to the Lords Referees.
b. One to whom the management or superintendence of something is entrusted.
c. A member of certain committees and courts appointed by the House of Commons to deal with private bills.

For details see Bonham-Carter's edition of May's Parl. Practice (1893) III. 726-8. Since 1868 the only Court of Referees has been one for deciding questions as to the locus standi of petitioners; the office of Referee on Private Bills ceased in 1902.

3. a. One to whom any matter or question in dispute is referred for decision; an umpire.1670
b. In games or sports 1840

Jesse  •  Link

"chose me a referee for him in a business"

I took his role as referee more as a personal mediator. Johnson's definition is 'one to whom anything is referred.' Given that their "their minds are both so high, their demands so distant" I'd think the referees would provide a bridge over the troubled waters, as it were.

Terry F  •  Link

On the model of what referees do suggested by Jesse (which makes sense), we can expect Messrs. Pepys and Clerke to meet however long it takes to negotiate a settlement; today the introductions and the differences are explored in brief.

Jesse  •  Link

"dispute about the freight of a ship"

I originally though this was an informal ("with him to the ... tavern") settlement approach. After reading Terry's commments I wonder whether this isn't a defined and established process for dispute resolution. A way to avoid the costs and troubles of going to court, similar to today's mediation processes, with Pepys, no doubt, expecting to be paid for his services.

alanB  •  Link

A sympathetic and understanding Sam ploughs on
Now Bess, what's 115 plus 115?
tooth hurty.
Good. Now 46 multiplied by 5?
tooth hurty
You really have got the hang of this arithmetique .. and 690 divided by 3?

cumgranosalis  •  Link

The coffee shop along with the Tavern, were the big business discussion areas, were neutral ground be ideal to settle trade. Business could not afford to set aside areas to be idle until required.

Miriam  •  Link

Does Mr. Pepys tells Mrs. Pepys what "he" is worth?

Log in to post an annotation.

If you don't have an account, then register here.