Up and, it being rainy, in Sir W. Pen’s coach to St. James’s, and there did our usual business with the Duke, and more and more preparations every day appear against the Dutch, and (which I must confess do a little move my envy) Sir W. Pen do grow every day more and more regarded by the Duke,1 because of his service heretofore in the Dutch warr which I am confident is by some strong obligations he hath laid upon Mr. Coventry; for Mr. Coventry must needs know that he is a man of very mean parts, but only a bred seaman: Going home in coach with Sir W. Batten he told me how Sir J. Minnes by the means of Sir R. Ford was the last night brought to his house and did discover the reason of his so long discontent with him, and now they are friends again, which I am sorry for, but he told it me so plainly that I see there is no thorough understanding between them, nor love, and so I hope there will be no great combination in any thing, nor do I see Sir J. Minnes very fond as he used to be. But: Sir W. Batten do raffle still against Mr. Turner and his wife, telling me he is a false fellow, and his wife a false woman, and has rotten teeth and false, set in with wire, and as I know they are so, so I am glad he finds it so. To the Coffee-house, and thence to the ‘Change, and therewith Sir W. Warren to the Coffee-house behind the ‘Change, and sat alone with him till 4 o’clock talking of his businesses first and then of business in general, and discourse how I might get money and how to carry myself to advantage to contract no envy and yet make the world see my pains; which was with great content to me, and a good friend and helpe I am like to find him, for which God be thanked! So home to dinner at 4 o’clock, and then to the office, and there late, and so home to supper and to bed, having sat up till past twelve at night to look over the account of the collections for the Fishery, and the loose and base manner that monies so collected are disposed of in, would make a man never part with a penny in that manner, and, above all, the inconvenience of having a great man, though never so seeming pious as my Lord Pembroke is. He is too great to be called to an account, and is abused by his servants, and yet obliged to defend them for his owne sake. This day, by the blessing of God, my wife and I have been married nine years: but my head being full of business, I did not think of it to keep it in any extraordinary manner. But bless God for our long lives and loves and health together, which the same God long continue, I wish, from my very heart!
- “The duke had decided that the English fleet should consist of three squadrons to be commanded by himself, Prince Rupert, and Lord Sandwich, from which arrangement the two last, who were land admirals; had concluded that Penn would have no concern in this fleet. Neither the duke, Rupert, nor Sandwich had ever been engaged in an encounter of fleets … Penn alone of the four was familiar with all these things. By the duke’s unexpected announcement that he should take Penn with him into his own ship, Rupert and Sandwich at once discovered that they would be really and practically under Penn’s command in everything.” ↩