Saturday 23 January 1663/64

Up, and to the office, where we sat all the morning. At noon home to dinner, where Mr. Hawly came to see us and dined with us, and after we had dined came Mr. Mallard, and after he had eat something, I brought down my vyall which he played on, the first maister that ever touched her yet, and she proves very well and will be, I think, an admirable instrument. He played some very fine things of his owne, but I was afeard to enter too far in their commendation for fear he should offer to copy them for me out, and so I be forced to give or lend him something. So to the office in the evening, whither Mr. Commander came to me, and we discoursed about my will, which I am resolved to perfect the next week by the grace of God. He being gone, I to write letters and other business late, and so home to supper and to bed.

8 Annotations

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

Poor Mr. Mallard, the Mendicant Musician

was probably tempted, too late, to say something disparaging about Sam's vial when he discovered he was only getting a meal for his performance.

Tom Burns   Link to this

...and so I be forced to give or lend him something.

Interesting. I haven't seen a great deal in the diary about these kinds of social obligations of the times (I've only been reading it for the last year or so). It opens up intersting possibilities for coercion on Mr. Mallard's part - I could just see him going round to all of his acquaintances with a sheaf of music in hand.

Tom Burns   Link to this

Since the first of the year, I've been reading two entries each day; the current one and the one for the same date in 1660. I was struck by how much more attention Sam pays to business now than then - in many of the 1660 entries, he goes to the office, finds nothing to do, then spends the rest of the day and evening carousing with his buds. I wonder if he misses those days...

A. De Araujo   Link to this

"and so I be forced to give or lend him something"
Sam gets 10 for honesty; 0 for being so petty

cumgranosalis   Link to this

Syrus has two interesting Maxims:
"...but I was afeard to enter too far in their commendation for fear he should offer to copy them for me out, and so I be forced to give or lend him something..."
I: "it is best to give favours for people with good memories."
or
II "be careful about starting somthing you may regret."

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...after we had dined came Mr. Mallard, and after he had eat something." Poor fellow may not even have gotten a proper dinner...

"Bess, have we got some table scraps for the musician?"

There's a wonderful bit by Lucian of Samostata about that fixture of Imperial Rome, the dependent Greek scholar/philosopher in the household, and his sufferings that Mallard (and others to seek our hero's patronage in future) would probably appreciate only too well. Though at least this fellow arrives in time for dinner...

"Let me begin with your first invitation to dinner, which may reasonably be expected to follow, as an earnest of the patronage to come. It is brought to you by a most communicative slave, whose goodwill it must be your first care to secure. Five shillings is the least you can slip into his palm, if you would do the thing properly. He has scruples. 'Really, sir--couldn't think of it; no, indeed, sir.' [Think Will Hewer] But he is prevailed upon at last, and goes off, grinning from ear to ear. You then look out your best clothes, have your bath, make yourself as presentable as possible, and arrive--in fear and trembling lest you should be the first, which would wear an awkward air, just as it savours of ostentation to arrive last. [Oops, Mallard] Accordingly you contrive to hit on the right moment, are received with every attention, and shown to your place, a little above the host, separated from him only by a couple of his intimates. And now you feel as if you were in heaven. You are all admiration; everything you see done throws you into ecstasies. It is all so new and strange! The waiters stare at you, the company watch your movements. Nor is the host without curiosity. Some of his servants have instructions to observe you narrowly, lest your glance should fall too often on his wife or children. The other guests' men perceive your amazement at the novel scene, and exchange jesting asides. From the fact that you do not know what to make of your napkin, they conclude that this is your first experience of dining-out. You perspire with embarrassment; not unnaturally. You are thirsty, but you dare not ask for wine, lest you should be thought a tippler. The due connexion between the various dishes which make their appearance is beyond you: which ought you to take first? which next? There is nothing for it but to snatch a side glance at your neighbour, do as he does, and learn to dine in sequence..."

http://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/luc/wl2/wl202.htm

Michael Robinson   Link to this

wonderful bit by Lucian of Samostata

Splendid find; I have forwarded the link with a note to all my friends associated with the "development" trade.

pepf   Link to this

Lucian of *Samostata* - typo or Hudibrastic rhyme with prostate?

Lucian, of Samosata. Published: (1522)
Luciani Samosatensis dialogorum selectorum Libri Duo, Græco-Latiné. In usum studiosæ juventutis.
{probabiliter emasculati ad usum delphini sive Pepysii}

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