Sunday 3 January 1663/64

(Lord’s day). Lay long in bed, and then rose and with a fire in my chamber staid within all day, looking over and settling my accounts in good order, by examining all my books, and the kitchen books, and I find that though the proper profit of my last year was but 305l., yet I did by other gain make it up 444l.., which in every part of it was unforeseen of me, and therefore it was a strange oversight for lack of examining my expenses that I should spend 690l. this year, but for the time to come I have so distinctly settled all my accounts in writing and the particulars of all my several layings out, that I do hope I shall hereafter make a better judgment of my spendings than ever. I dined with my wife in her chamber, she in bed, and then down again and till 11 at night, and broke up and to bed with great content, but could not make an end of writing over my vows as I purposed, but I am agreed in every thing how to order myself for the year to come, which I trust in God will be much for my good. So up to prayers and to bed. This evening Sir W. Pen came to invite me against next Wednesday, being Twelfth day, to his usual feast, his wedding day.

9 Annotations

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"Proper profit?" Lets see...350L per annum unless Coventry's awarded him a generous raise minus 100Ls to Mr. Barlow who presumably still annoyingly clings to life else we'd've have a muted but ecstatic mention in some entry...That leaves 250Ls honorably earned in the King's service. Where's the 55L, let alone the 444 presumably not so honorably earned. ("other gain"...Don't you love it?)

Also, if he's spent 690L how the heck did he end up with 800L in ye piggy bank?

"Oh...Well, that was from my pimping Bess out to Lord Sandwich. Did I fail to mention that in my Diary?"

Ruben  •  Link

all my books, and the kitchen books
My books: Where Samuel wrote
Kitchen books: where the Lady of the House wrote?

Ruben  •  Link

"I dined with my wife in her chamber, she in bed"
Did they sleep in different rooms? Did they have a common bedroom and one more bed in their own chamber?

Mary  •  Link

"could not make an end of writing over my vows.."

Does this imply that Sam draws up a whole series of vows for conduct during the coming year, not just the vows about play-going that we have been given sight of? Those (at least, as drafted in yesterday's entry) would not appear to take a great deal of time in the writing.

It would be good to know what his other undertakings are. Obligations to family, perhaps? Treatment of his wife? Policy towards gratuities and 'gifts'? Conduct of office politics?

Rob  •  Link

"my books" & "kitchen books" refers to the a record of all the household expenses.

JonTom Kittredge  •  Link

"...not just the vows about play-going?"
Mary, as I recall, Pepys has mentioned that vows that apply to drink. I think they require him to avoid "strong drink," i.e. distilled liquor.

assem illum custodi  •  Link

"...that I do hope I shall hereafter make a better judgment of my spendings than ever..."
Sam keeps notes on all of his fiscal transctions , [public and private ] showing the disposition of his hoard on his little quarto of papyrus rushes, then at the end of the quarter, checks his figures. He would be a most successful CFO. for any organisation.
Why should he bother? well there be seven places of accomadation that would help him satisfiy his creditors with their pound of flesh,if he failed to have the ever ready on the day of tally.
Strange that very few people show a keenness to spend less than that have.

Pedro  •  Link

From the Carte Papers...

W. Coventry to Ormond Date: 3 January 1664
Shelfmark: MS. Carte 47, fol(s). 416
Document type: Holograph

Mr John Tempest, bearer of this letter, is recommended, by Sir John Lawson, as a very fit person to be sent to Bristol to assist in choice of pressed men.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

The 'proper profit' would be from official fees. (Per L&M footnote)

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