Saturday 27 August 1664

Up and to the office, where all the morning. At noon to the ‘Change, and there almost made my bargain about a ship for Tangier, which will bring me in a little profit with Captain Taylor. Off the ‘Change with Mr. Cutler and Sir W. Rider to Cutler’s house, and there had a very good dinner, and two or three pretty young ladies of their relations there. Thence to my case-maker for my stone case, and had it to my mind, and cost me 24s., which is a great deale of money, but it is well done and pleases me. So doing some other small errands I home, and there find my boy, Tom Edwards, come, sent me by Captain Cooke, having been bred in the King’s Chappell these four years. I propose to make a clerke of him, and if he deserves well, to do well by him. Spent much of the afternoon to set his chamber in order, and then to the office leaving him at home, and late at night after all business was done I called Will and told him my reason of taking a boy, and that it is of necessity, not out of any unkindness to him, nor should be to his injury, and then talked about his landlord’s daughter to come to my wife, and I think it will be. So home and find my boy a very schoole boy, that talks innocently and impertinently, but at present it is a sport to us, and in a little time he will leave it. So sent him to bed, he saying that he used to go to bed at eight o’clock, and then all of us to bed, myself pretty well pleased with my choice of a boy. All the newes this day is, that the Dutch are, with twenty-two sayle of ships of warr, crewsing up and down about Ostend; at which we are alarmed. My Lord Sandwich is come back into the Downes with only eight sayle, which is or may be a prey to the Dutch, if they knew our weakness and inability to set out any more speedily.

12 Annotations

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"...if they knew our weakness and inability to set out any more speedily."


"Mr. Pepys was sayin' the Lord Sandwich's fleet was only eight sail, sir. An easy prey to the Dutch if they but knew, sir."

"And our people will, boy. Well done,, Tom."

"I's lives to serve the Republic, Captain."


Nice of Sam to consider Will Hewer's feelings. Seems hard to imagine a man able to show such a good heart to two servants and yet dump his doomed little niece in the trash. Compartmentalization, and the blessing of being able to claim some very slight doubt as to her true parentage, I guess.

Australian Susan  •  Link

"...find my boy a very schoole boy, that talks innocently and impertinently, but at present it is a sport to us, and in a little time he will leave it...."
Yes, it is all very well to find his prattle pleasing and amusing withindoors, but Sam would probably find it rather embarrassing in front of some of his acquaintance. We look forward to learning more! Anyone else get this out of time vision of one Nigel Molesworth of St Custard's? And for those of you out there who don't know:
Here is the information in wikipedia (as any fule kno)

Martin  •  Link

Has Sam set forth his reasons for taking on Tom Edwards as his new boy? In other words, what did he tell Will? He first discussed the idea with Captain Cooke May 31. Not surpisingly he doesn't seem to have agonized much over the idea (other than getting proper clothes made), compared with how he reacts to Elizabeth's regular wishes for a "woman", a "French maid", etc.

Michael Robinson  •  Link

he doesn't seem to have agonized much over the idea

Well the boy will cost him nothing and if his first set of clothes are paid for SP may actually make a small surplus on Tom Edwards. All that is lacking is SP remarking on his own extraordinary generosity in not charging Edwards' parents for giving him the place!

"that one of the clerkes of the Clerke of the Acts should have an addition of 30L. a year, ... that I may give T. Hater 20L. and keep 10L. towards a boy's keeping. "

Pedro  •  Link

"but at present it is a sport to us, and in a little time he will leave it."

He will, especially when the maids tell him about Wayneman.

Robert Gertz  •  Link


If I remember correctly Tom's not an orphan...He gets into trouble with Sam briefly for going off to see Mom later on. Yet he's been "bred" at King's Chapel (apparently under Capt Cooke's direction, Cooke being Master of the Children of the Chapel Royal) and lived there, judging from his comments. Would he have been a scholarship student of sorts there? While Edwards is no doubt fortunate that Sam hopes to make him a successful clerk, sounds a bit awful farming promising (and perhaps sometimes not so promising) young singers out to any gentleman who wants them.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Sam must have been that newsreader (the large fellow in the "Rome" series) in a past life in ancient Rome. I can just see him making those gestures as he tells the crowd that "the noble Antony goes East..."

Mary  •  Link

Young Tom Edwards,

The tone of these entries inclines one to assume that Tom was scarcely out of childhood at this point and the eight o'clock habitual bedtime reinforces this view. If L&M are to be believed (and why not?) he was born in 1645 and so is 19 years old at the start of his employ with Samuel. Not such a very little boy, then; just untutored in the ways of the world.

Mary  •  Link

Young Tom Edwards.

The tone of the entry inclines one to the opinion that Tom is scarcely out of childhood and the reference to an habitual eight o'clock bedtime reinforces this view. But L&M assures us ( and why should we not believe it?) that Tom was born in 1645. Thus he is already 19 years old at this date; not exactly a child, though as yet untutored in the ways of the world. Certainly not an infant ripped untimely from his mother's bosom.

JWB  •  Link

Late bloomer?

Henry Purcell was chorister until his voice broke ~ 14 & then left. Cooke carried the title "master of the children" after all.

Terry F  •  Link

Small fleet? Hire a shanty composer:


Being an encouragement for seamen and souldiers to serve his Majesty in his wars against the Dutch, etc.

Dutchmen beware, we have a fleet,
Will make you tremble when you see't,
Mann'd with brave Englishmen of high renown,
Who can and will your peacock plumes pull down ;
Then cease your boasting, it will nought availe,
You know its but your duty to strike sayle.

To the tune of The stormy winds do blow.

Brave loyal hearted English-men, attend whilst I declare,
What noble preparations is made for the Hollands war;
For certain such a bloody fight hath never been before,
As is near, you shall hear, when the cannons loud do roar.

Pedro  •  Link

On this day 200 miles south of the equator...

Holmes turned on a course that would bring him home by way of Cape Verde and the Canary Islands. With every imaginable advantage of wind and weather it would be many days before they sighted land. Next to Holmes's navigation the safety of the fleet would thus depend largely on vigilance in station-keeping.

(Man of War by Ollard)

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