Friday 19 August 1664

Up and to the office, where Mr. Coventry and Sir W. Pen and I sat all the morning hiring of ships to go to Guinny, where we believe the warr with Holland will first break out. At noon dined at home, and after dinner my wife and I to Sir W. Pen’s, to see his Lady, the first time, who is a well-looked, fat, short, old Dutchwoman, but one that hath been heretofore pretty handsome, and is now very discreet, and, I believe, hath more wit than her husband. Here we staid talking a good while, and very well pleased I was with the old woman at first visit. So away home, and I to my office, my wife to go see my aunt Wight, newly come to town. Creed came to me, and he and I out, among other things, to look out a man to make a case, for to keep my stone, that I was cut of, in, and he to buy Daniel’s history, which he did, but I missed of my end. So parted upon Ludgate Hill, and I home and to the office, where busy till supper, and home to supper to a good dish of fritters, which I bespoke, and were done much to my mind. Then to the office a while again, and so home to bed. The newes of the Emperour’s victory over the Turkes is by some doubted, but by most confessed to be very small (though great) of what was talked, which was 80,000 men to be killed and taken of the Turke’s side.

8 Annotations

Cactus Wren   Link to this

"The newes of the Emperour's victory over the Turkes is by some doubted, but by most confessed to be very small (though great) of what was talked ... " I'm not sure about this. Is he saying, "The victory was impressive, but most people agree that 800,000 must be an exaggeration"?

It's going to be time for supper here soon. Maybe I'll bespeak a dish of fritters.

Cum Grano Salis   Link to this

"...The newes of the Emperour's victory over the Turkes is by some doubted, but by most confessed to be very small (though great) of what was talked, which was 80,000 men to be killed and taken of the Turke's side...."
Turkes [Ottoman empire] not a friend, Austrian, not a friend, The Spanish not either, and as for the French German connection, well that be questionable, besides it does not help or hinder English trade.

MissAnn   Link to this

"... who is a well-looked, fat, short, old Dutchwoman, but one that hath been heretofore pretty handsome ..." - what a wonderful description, glad he's not writing about me.

Mary   Link to this

Lady Pen.

This is the former Margriet Jaspers, who was about 41 or 42 at this date. Old indeed!

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Interesting that Admiral Sir Will seems to have no anxious moments re his Dutch ties. Or at least Sam, his sworn enemy, seems uninclined to hit at him that way and uninterested in ferreting out any rumors against him on that score.

Of course should the war go badly...

"Traitor Penn, cause of our disasters, to hang!"

Bradford   Link to this

Since in the American Mid-South at present the fritter most often encountered is merely donut batter with bits of apple in it, deep-fried then heavily glazed, let the Companion's Large Glossary clue us all in on what the term meant to Pepys. They cite ii.43 and describe then as "pancakes: some 17th-cent. recipe books distinguish fritters as filled pancakes, but Pepys appears to use the term indiscriminately, as the Shrove Tuesday context implies". Alas, no contemporary recipe appears in the article on "Food."

Cum Grano Salis   Link to this

He was not frit to come home or fritter away more time at the Office."...home to supper to a good dish of fritters, which I bespoke, and were done much to my mind..."

Samuell gets another entry into the OED today:

fritter noun or verb
to fritter or not to fritter OR JUST FRY
do not be frit:
Wasting time was not its meaning until 1728 or be scared as in do not be frit. [pure slang]
otherwise it be sumert fried with what be available ;pommes or left over meat;

OED: selected by salt.
[a. Fr. friture = Sp. fritura, It. frittura:{em}Lat. type *fr{imac}ct{umac}ra, f. fr{imac}g{ebreve}re to FRY.]

1. Usually pl. A portion of batter, sometimes containing slices of apple, meat, etc., fried in oil, lard, etc. Often preceded by some qualifying word, as apple-, oyster-, rice-fritter; also, in 15-16th c., in some semi-anglicized French terms, as {dag}fritter-bounce, -pouch, -sage, -viant (meat) (obs.).
c1420 Liber Cocorum (1862) 55 Tarts and daryels and custan dere, Rysshene and pome dorres, and frutur in fere.

[ad. It. frittata, f. frittare to fry, f. fritto, pa. pple. of friggere: see FRY v.]
< Italian frittata (1484) < frittata, past participle of frittare to fry (1598 in Florio; now rare or obs.) < fritto, past participle of friggere (see FRY v.1).
The same word was earlier borrowed into English as FRITTADO n.]

A thick, well-cooked Italian omelette, typically containing a selection of meat, cheese, potatoes, etc., usually mixed in with the eggs during cooking, and served open rather than folded. Cf. Spanish omelette s.v. SPANISH a. 7.

In quot. 1875 apparently a rendering of the Italian figurative idiom fare la frittata (to make a mess of something), otherwise unattested in English use, but cf. to make a hash of s.v. HASH n.1 3a.
[18

1634 J. TAYLOR (Water P.) Gt. Eater Kent 12 Pancake or fritter or flap-iacke.

1664 PEPYS Diary 19 Aug., Home to supper to a good dish of fritters.

[interesting side note]
3. pl. Whaling = FENKS.
[Perh. a transferred use of F. friture fat in which something is fried.]
1631 E. PELLHAM Preserv. 8 Englishm. in Green-land 22 We agreed..to keepe Wednesdayes and Fridayes Fasting dayes; excepting from the Frittars or Graves of the Whale. (marg. note. These be the Scraps of the Fat of the Whale, which are flung away after the Oyle is gotten out of it.)

then: A fritter frittado.
1635 J. HAYWARD tr. Biondi's Banish'd Virg. 46 Making her a frittado of egges and milke he set it before her.
[a. Fr. frit, pa. pple. of frire to fry.]

cape henry   Link to this

Interesting, too, that Pepys, who is himself only about 5' tall, should refer to someone as 'short.' She must have been a very small person by our standards.

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