Monday 17 April 1665

Up and to the Duke of Albemarle’s, where he shewed me Mr. Coventry’s letters, how three Dutch privateers are taken, in one whereof Everson’s son is captaine. But they have killed poor Captaine Golding in The Diamond. Two of them, one of 32 and the other of 20 odd guns, did stand stoutly up against her, which hath 46, and the Yarmouth that hath 52 guns, and as many more men as they. So that they did more than we could expect, not yielding till many of their men were killed. And Everson, when he was brought before the Duke of Yorke, and was observed to be shot through the hat, answered, that he wished it had gone through his head, rather than been taken. One thing more is written: that two of our ships the other day appearing upon the coast of Holland, they presently fired their beacons round the country to give notice. And newes is brought the King, that the Dutch Smyrna fleete is seen upon the back of Scotland; and thereupon the King hath wrote to the Duke, that he do appoint a fleete to go to the Northward to try to meet them coming home round: which God send! Thence to White Hall; where the King seeing me, did come to me, and calling me by name, did discourse with me about the ships in the River: and this is the first time that ever I knew the King did know me personally; so that hereafter I must not go thither, but with expectation to be questioned, and to be ready to give good answers. So home, and thence with Creed, who come to dine with me, to the Old James, where we dined with Sir W. Rider and Cutler, and, by and by, being called by my wife, we all to a play, “The Ghosts,” at the Duke’s house, but a very simple play. Thence up and down, with my wife with me, to look [for] Sir Ph. Warwicke (Mr. Creed going from me), but missed of him and so home, and late and busy at my office. So home to supper and to bed. This day was left at my house a very neat silver watch, by one Briggs, a scrivener and sollicitor, at which I was angry with my wife for receiving, or, at least, for opening the box wherein it was, and so far witnessing our receipt of it, as to give the messenger 5s. for bringing it; but it can’t be helped, and I will endeavour to do the man a kindnesse, he being a friend of my uncle Wight’s.

28 Annotations

Eric Walla   Link to this

It's not so much that Elizabeth took receipt of the watch, but that they know that Sam knows that they presented a watch. Moreover, the messenger and onlookers know that they presented Sam a watch; in other words, they know that Sam knows that they know that Sam knows that they presented Sam a watch ... Now Sam has no way of knowing who knows that they know that Sam knows that they know that Sam's knows that they presented Sam a watch. Ah, the protocol of bribery is complex indeed!

Carl in Boston   Link to this

Ist das nicht ein Warre, and we are winning ?
Ist das nicht das King, he knows our Sam and wants his briefing ?
Ist das nicht ein play with Ghosts ?
Ist das nicht ein bribe from Briggs ?
Warres und Kings und Ghosts und Bribes
It's a good day, Life's not too bad

Robert Gertz   Link to this

But thank God, it can all be ascribed to family friendship...Praise be to God for dear old Uncle Wight.

Poor Bess she no doubt thought she was doing the thing in style. I wonder from Sam's comments if he's instructed her carefully in this gentle art and was upset she'd failed him or if he simply gave general instructions to open no packages delivered without his approval.

***
Whoa, the Boss suddenly knows your name, Samuel. Not necessarily bad... "Charles, call that charming little fellow aboard for a night of pleasure on the yacht." Sam staring at Castlemaine. ...Not necessary a good thing... "So, Pepys...What the devil is the fleet got to? I see from Jaime, supplies are low, ammunition gone, no fresh ships available? Well? Well?"

jeannine   Link to this

"This day was left at my house a very neat silver watch"

I wonder if anyone has ever done an inventory of all of the 'gifts' that Sam has received over the years. I'm also curious if any of these items are still around in a museum or collection perhaps?

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"Two of them, one of 32 and the other of 20 odd guns, did stand stoutly up against her, which hath 46, and the Yarmouth that hath 52 guns, and as many more men as they. So that they did more than we could expect, not yielding till many of their men were killed. And Everson, when he was brought before the Duke of Yorke, and was observed to be shot through the hat, answered, that he wished it had gone through his head, rather than been taken."

So a little victory but not exactly a great triumph over badly outgunned and outmanneed Dutch privateers.

Still, no one turned tail and ran or surrendered. And gallant young Evertsen is likely to be a valuable prisoner. Wise Sam though to be concerned about the performance rather than celebrating.

Michael Robinson   Link to this

" ... I was angry with my wife for receiving, or, at least, for opening the box wherein it was, and so far witnessing our receipt of it, ..."

How far SP has come; but six or so months ago:-

" ... I met Sir W. Warren, and afterwards to the Sun taverne,where he brought to me, being all alone; 100l. in a bag, which I offered him to give him my receipt for, but he told me, no, ... he himself expressly taking care that nobody might see this business done, though I was willing enough to have carried a servant with me to have received it, but he advised me to do it myself. ..."
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1664/09/16/

Michael Robinson   Link to this

" ... the Dutch Smyrna fleete is seen upon the back of Scotland; and thereupon the King hath wrote to the Duke, that he do appoint a fleete to go to the Northward to try to meet them coming home round: which God send!"

Prizes! Cash flow ...

Michael Robinson   Link to this

" ... a very neat silver watch, ..."

L& M suggest that a 'neat watch' was likely to be of the undecorated variety known as 'puritan':-

Oval silver Puritan watch with a plain silver outer case, silver dial and silver calendar and astronomical dials. Movement signed John Burgis, fecit.
http://www.dover.gov.uk/museum/focus/puritanpoc...

Bryan M   Link to this

“the protocol of bribery is complex indeed!”

As Michael Robinson’s post suggests, the protocol is fairly simple: avoid witnesses who might be questioned (under oath) later.

While some have commented on Sam’s apparent parsimony with the household budget, we can see here that Liz has the means to be quite generous to the messenger. Five shillings is about a month’s wages for one of the maids.

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

Everson - Evertsen

The short version of the annotation that comes up when the link is moused contains an error. The battle in question is Scheveningen, not Schevingen. The annotation has it right.

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

so that hereafter I must not go thither[Whitehall], but with expectation to be questioned, and to be ready to give good answers

Poor Sam, no longer a fly on the wall at court (in itself a privilege)now that Charles knows him by face, name and profession.

language hat   Link to this

Poor Sam? I think he's quite willing to make the tradeoff of having to be prepared to discuss state matters at a moment's notice if it means being personally known to the King, which is more than he could have aspired to a couple of years back.

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

Poor Sam

LH, you are right of course, but I also sense a recognition by Sam that one of his favorite passtimes now imposes a burden. It won't be so easy to drop in at court and check out the crowd as it was before. "Poor Sam" is meant to sympathize with this loss, but it is also what one might say to a friend who bemoans the burdens of sudden wealth.

Phil   Link to this

So why would Timothy Briggs, "a scrivener and sollicitor" want to brib Sam? Other than being a friend of Sam's uncle, would Briggs represent the interest of some other party or is Briggs into something himself. It seems from the passage this is not a payment for past favours but future endeavours.

Nix   Link to this

Why would Briggs want to bribe Sam?

I imagine we (and Samuel) will learn in due time. Briggs is observing the lobbyist's time-honored adage: To enter the room, one first has to unlock the door. Still observed at every political fund-raising event in America.

CGS   Link to this

Words be first choice to persuade anyone to think your way, but monies be be powerful incentive to change thy mind and go along with thy version of thought.
Bribery never?
Five bob [ 5 weeks work for most of the lessors or 60 loaves of bread] be a fortune.

Pedro   Link to this

“And newes is brought the King, that the Dutch Smyrna fleete is seen upon the back of Scotland”

Allin had attacked the Dutch Smyrna fleet off Cadiz on the 19th of December 1664. One of the merchantmen was sunk and two taken, the rest ran close to the shore and escaped into Cadiz. No doubt that they decided to take the longer way back.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

L&M say that Briggs "was a notary-public who did some business with the Navy Office and Admiral's office, e.g. in obtaining ships' passes to the Mediterranean during the war." (All it takes to do THAT is a notary-public, i.e., scrivener?!)

CGS   Link to this

A scrivener did not have a crass way of enticing new customers like advertising , so word of the mouth be required, but most people need a little help [enticements, rebates etc.] in passing the good word around word, The Parson had his plate, the professionals had fees and his recipes.
Word of Mouth be the best. or a good spider web , come into my parlour.

Pedro   Link to this

"And Everson, when he was brought before the Duke of Yorke, and was observed to be shot through the hat, answered, that he wished it had gone through his head, rather than been taken."

(For Jeannine) On the previous day, the 16th, Sandwich had recorded in his Journal…

“…This day came into the fleet the Mermaid with a small privateer of Holland. And the Yarmouth and the Diamond with another prize of 32 guns of Holland privateers, and another of 16 guns. Captain Golding, the Captain of the Diamond, was killed in the fight.

And so Sam seems to have received the news a day after, but interesting to note from the Wiki background…

“John Evelyn recounts how Cornelis was on 24 March 1665 released for his wit by Charles II of England in person: Cornelis having been admitted into the royal bedchamber, His Majesty gave him his hand to kiss, and restored him his liberty; asked many questions concerning the fight (it being the first blood drawn), his Majesty remembering the many civilties he had formerly received from his relations abroad — this was a reference to the support the Evertsen family had given Charles during his exile. Evelyn was then commanded to go with him to the Holland Ambassador, where he was to stay for his passport, and I was to give him 50 pieces in broad gold[2]. Charles this way not only repaid old favours shown, but also tried to sow dissension between the staunchly orangist province of Zealand and the republican province of Holland; he pretended to champion the cause of the young William III of Orange.”

(Perhaps the date above in Wiki is wrong? Anyway Cornelius lived to take part in the Battle of Lowestoft and so he must have been released pretty sharpish.)

Pedro   Link to this

“And newes is brought the King, that the Dutch Smyrna fleete is seen upon the back of Scotland”

Again for Jeannine from the Journal of Sandwich edited by Anderson for this Day...

"...There are upon the circumstances supposed to be the Dutch Smyrna fleet that stopped at Cadiz all the winter, and posssibly de Ruyter also. The King is desirous the fleet should sail and endevour to attrap them as they come about the north of Scotland..."

Terry Foreman   Link to this

The link Wiki dates of Cornelius' imprisonment and release are mistaken. I corrected those in the Wikipedia article itself (to 15 and 24 April), but this site has not picked them up (I've emailed Phil about that).

CGS   Link to this

The Wily Dutch did not want their ships messed around with by the RN's in the German sea, so sneaked the way home by taking the diversion of by sailing passed the Emerald Isle, they be tired after coming through the Bay Of Biscay, and not quite fit enough for a fight, thereby not allowing the Men of the London getting some easy swag.

Pedro   Link to this

English Intelligence.

Today’s entry in the Journal of Edward Montagu edited by Anderson (normally posted by Jeannine) is a lengthy on and includes…

“I saw a copy of the Instructions of the States General to their Admiral…Resolved at the Assembly of the said H.M. Lords States General, in the Hague, the 18th of April 1665.”

He goes on to list 26 instructions in detail.

Pedro   Link to this

Obdam’s Instructions.

Some content of the instructions to the Dutch Fleet that have been previously discussed…

10. That also the Under Officers’, nor any mariner’s wives shall be suffered to be aboard above 3 days, but that after that time they may be put ashore, and not permitted to come aboard any more.

11. That likewise no sutlers with strong drink, nor any others, shall be suffered to come aboard, that so the Mariners may not be tempted to spend their monies and pawn their clothes…

13. That they shall encourage their men daily with minding them of the Rewards they are to expect, if that they shall behave themselves valiantly against the enemy, and on the contrary to threaten them with what punishment they are to expect, if they do otherwise…

21…if it should happen that any of the enemy ships be taken, that then he that hath taken the same shall with the approbation of the Commander in Chief send the prize and her men to the Port of the Admiralty which he belongs to…

(Journal of Edward Montague edited by Anderson)

CGS   Link to this

sutlers [The original Naffi /PX ]
OED ;[a. early mod.Du. soeteler (mod.Du. zoetelaar) small vendor, petty tradesman, victualler, soldier's servant, drudge, sutler in an army (= MLG. sut(t)eler, sudeler), f. soetelen to befoul, to perform mean duties, follow a mean or low occupation or trade (cf. LG. suddeln, early mod.G. sudeln to sully: see SUDDLE).] One who follows an army or lives in a garrison town and sells provisions to the soldiers.
1590

sutlery
1. The occupation of a sutler; victualling.
1606

2. A sutler's establishment; a victualling establishment or department, esp. for the supplying of soldiers with food and drink.
.....
Thanks Pedro : now we have an insight to why there be a female aboard a gunship and drowned when the ship disintegrated from ignited gunpowder.

Glyn   Link to this

Robert Gertz: "So a little victory but not exactly a great triumph over badly outgunned and outmanneed Dutch privateers."

But personally I think that it's always a victory to arrange things so that you are out-gunning or out-manning your enemy.

cum salis grano   Link to this

Neither be a lender or a borrower be, debt be the name.
Briggs may be a money lender whom would loan out monies to the needy. [see OED for definition now extinct.]
"...This day was left at my house a very neat silver watch, by one Briggs, a scrivener and sollicitor, at which I was angry with my wife for receiving, or, at least, for opening the box wherein it was, and so far witnessing our receipt of it, as to give the messenger 5s. for bringing it; but it can’t be helped, and I will endeavour to do the man a kindnesse,..."

Thus Samuell has a reason to worry, was the gift to entice wife to borrow monies to hide losses in the kitchen account????

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