Friday 17 March 1664/65

Up and to my office, and then with Sir W. Batten to St. James’s, where many come to take leave, as was expected, of the Duke, but he do not go till Monday. This night my Lady Wood died of the small-pox, and is much lamented among the great persons for a good-natured woman and a good wife, but for all that it was ever believed she was as others are. The Duke did give us some commands, and so broke up, not taking leave of him. But the best piece of newes is, that instead of a great many troublesome Lords, the whole business is to be left with the Duke of Albemarle to act as Admirall in his stead; which is a thing that do cheer my heart. For the other would have vexed us with attendance, and never done the business. Thence to the Committee of Tangier, where the Duke a little, and then left us and we staid. A very great Committee, the Lords Albemarle, Sandwich, Barkely, Fitzharding, Peterborough, Ashley, Sir Thos. Ingram, Sir G. Carteret and others. The whole business was the stating of Povy’s accounts, of whom to say no more, never could man say worse himself nor have worse said of him than was by the company to his face; I mean, as to his folly and very reflecting words to his honesty. Broke up without anything but trouble and shame, only I got my businesses done to the signing of two bills for the Contractors and Captain Taylor, and so come away well pleased, and home, taking up my wife at the ‘Change, to dinner. After dinner out again bringing my wife to her father’s again at Charing Cross, and I to the Committee again, where a new meeting of trouble about Povy, who still makes his business worse and worse, and broke up with the most open shame again to him, and high words to him of disgrace that they would not trust him with any more money till he had given an account of this. So broke up. Then he took occasion to desire me to step aside, and he and I by water to London together. In the way, of his owne accord, he proposed to me that he would surrender his place of Treasurer to me to have half the profit. The thing is new to me; but the more I think the more I like it, and do put him upon getting it done by the Duke. Whether it takes or no I care not, but I think at present it may have some convenience in it. Home, and there find my wife come home and gone to bed, of a cold got yesterday by water. At the office Bellamy come to me again, and I am in hopes something may be got by his business. So late home to supper and bed.

12 Annotations

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Happy day! (what I think has happened today)

1) Albemarle (George Monck) is to take over the Duke's Tangier portfolio;

2) Povy proposes Pepys be Treasurer of the Tangier Committee.

cape henry   Link to this

"...but for all that it was ever believed she was as others are." Pepys is not one to quibble when pronouncing his views of the dead.

(I think TF above has summed up the entry quite neatly above.)

Glyn   Link to this

Is the link to Lady Wood going to the correct person? Terry F's annotations there say that she died in 1680.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Glyn, Terry F's note is confused and mistaken. Lady Mary Gardiner Wood died today. Her daughter, née Mary Wood, b. c 1664, will die in 1680.
(Thanks for the heads-up!)

Carl in Boston   Link to this

The whole business was the stating of Povy’s accounts, of whom to say no more, never could man say worse himself nor have worse said of him than was by the company to his face; I mean, as to his folly and very reflecting words to his honesty.
I had no idea the aristocracy could get themselves together and demand exactitude of accounting, but there it is. I can't see beyond today in the diary, but it looks like Pepys will get the job at half the profit and maybe one eighth the work, as Pepys knows his business, and follows it too.
Yea verily, the remains of this day of the Feast of The Blessed Saint Patrick, and the top thereof to all, and the rest of the day to meself.

Michael Robinson   Link to this

" ... instead of a great many troublesome Lords, the whole business is to be left with the Duke of Albemarle to act as Admirall in his stead;"

Does this not mean that George Monck is to be 'deputy admiral' in the Duke's absence at sea, and the problems of the Admiralty being placed in commission and run by the great and good are avoided? For the great and the good in action see SP's observations on a recent meeting of the council:

"We to a Committee of the Council to discourse concerning pressing of men; but, Lord! how they meet; never sit down: one comes, now another goes, then comes another; one complaining that nothing is done, another swearing that he hath been there these two hours and nobody come. ..."
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1665/02/27/

Terry Foreman   Link to this

English over Irish and the aftermath: an example from the Carte Calendar

Ormond to the Commissioners of Prizes in England
Written from: Dublin Castle

Date: 17 March 1665
....
A petition has been presented by Luke Hoare [in MS.: "Hore"] of Dublin, merchant, setting forth the circumstances of the seizure and subsequent plunder, in England, of the ship St Thomas of Dublin; for which redress is desired ...

http://www.rsl.ox.ac.uk/dept/scwmss/projects/ca...

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...Lady Wood died of the small-pox, and is much lamented among the great persons for a good-natured woman and a good wife, but for all that it was ever believed she was as others are."

Geesh, Sam...If you going to play gossip at least give us details. With whom? Where? When?

***

Don't do it, Thomas!

Of course, there is the other hand...

One year later...

"Gentlemen?" Povy waves the trio into his parlor, Sam pausing in discussion.

"We're looking for the Treasurer of the Tangier colony..."

"That's me." Sam notes proudly.

"Sorry but we were informed it was a gentleman by the name of..."

"I am Treasurer, gentlemen. Samuel Pepys, esquire. You are seeking me."

Each eye the others... "Sir, with all due respect... We seek the man actually in charge of affairs for Tangier. You are not the gentleman we..."

"Gentlemen. The affairs of Tangier are in my hands. If you are seeking the man in charge, the man with all accounts in his hands and at his fingertips...You are speaking to him."

"He is Treasurer, gentlemen." Povy nods.

Heh, heh.

"Very well, in that case, sir, we charge you in the King's name. Amend that warrant, Cruthers."

War...?

"Right. Not 'Povy' but 'Peeps'? Is that P-e-e-p-s?"

"P-e-p-y-s." Povy offers, helpfully.

JWB   Link to this

autoclesis interruptus

"the stating of Povy’s accounts, of whom to say no more, never could man say... I mean..." Reminds me of the late Pres. Nixon for whom this rhetorical trick (& failing to pull it off by keeping one's mouth shut after the initial introduction of he matter) was a favorite.

Martin   Link to this

How are we to read Povy's offer of "half the profit?"

Does it mean: I can arrange for you to become treasurer, but they'll only pay you half what they paid me?

Or: If you'll volunteer to be treasurer in my place, I'll step aside as long as you agree to split half the graft with me?

The latter would certainly "have some convenience in it."

Mary   Link to this

splitting the 'graft'

L&M note that this was to involve splitting the poundage with Povy, 1d. in each shilling and 2d. in each piece-of-eight of the expenditure.

NB we're talking old pence here: 240 to the pound and 12 to the shilling.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Hmmn...So Povy does no work and takes half. Nice.

But methinks (ok, spoiler...)

...Sam will get the best of this deal in the end...Though not without a deal of work.

Any way...Chaching, chaching...Hear that lovely sound of cold hard cash filling the Pepys retirement fund.

Tangier garrison...

"We're Soldiers of our Pepys...Each contributing his penny. To keep his Pepys in heaps...Though complaints we have many. The bad food and poor water, rotten powder and biscuit. The enemy don't fight us...Whyever should he fight us. So long as we live like this...What need has he to fight us?

We're Soldiers of our Pepys. Linked in onerous tether...To keep Sam Pepys in heaps...And make his pennies many. We suffer while he rejoices, we have but meager shelter. While he waxes fat, we are eating leather. Yes, while he waxes fat, we are eating leather."

***

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