Monday 22 May 1665

Up, and down to the ships, which now are hindered from going down to the fleete (to our great sorrow and shame) with their provisions, the wind being against them. So to the Duke of Albemarle, and thence down by water to Deptford, it being Trinity Monday, and so the day of choosing the Master of Trinity House for the next yeare, where, to my great content, I find that, contrary to the practice and design of Sir W. Batten, to breake the rule and custom of the Company in choosing their Masters by succession, he would have brought in Sir W. Rider or Sir W. Pen, over the head of Hurleston (who is a knave too besides, I believe), the younger brothers did all oppose it against the elder, and with great heat did carry it for Hurleston, which I know will vex him to the heart. Thence, the election being over, to church, where an idle sermon from that conceited fellow, Dr. Britton, saving that his advice to unity, and laying aside all envy and enmity among them was very apposite. Thence walked to Redriffe, and so to the Trinity House, and a great dinner, as is usual, and so to my office, where busy all the afternoon till late, and then home to bed, being much troubled in mind for several things, first, for the condition of the fleete for lacke of provisions, the blame this office lies under and the shame that they deserve to have brought upon them for the ships not being gone out of the River, and then for my business of Tangier which is not settled, and lastly for fear that I am not observed to have attended the office business of late as much as I ought to do, though there has been nothing but my attendance on Tangier that has occasioned my absence, and that of late not much.

13 Annotations

Australian Susan   Link to this

"...for fear that I am not observed to have attended the office business of late as much as I ought to do, though there has been nothing but my attendance on Tangier that has occasioned my absence, and that of late not much...."

As we have had a succession of entries which just briefly talk about long days at the office, how can anyone, other than the malicious, say Sam has not been working incredibly hard! I don't think Sam has any reason to worry about this. I think his showing his "fear" shows he is still uncertain and feels vulnerable as to his position in the Navy Office - also shown by how he records such things as the King taking notice of him or others praising his work.

Glyn   Link to this

Yes, perhaps this explains why he has been so busy lately working so hard: arranging contracts for provisions, munitions, spare equipment such as ropes, sails and suchlike for these ships before they set sail. His Office has failed to do it all in time so that now the wind is against the ships (hardly his fault) and they've missed the tide, so they'll be 12 hours to a day late - can't you just imagine the Captains swearing profanities at the clerks and their bosses in the Naval Office and demanding to know why they didn't work harder or better. Not a major setback, but irritating to everyone.

Glyn   Link to this

One would almost think that a major naval battle is about to take place.

JWB   Link to this

"Up, and down to the ships..."

I think this the best beginning of an entry to the diary so far.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...and then for my business of Tangier which is not settled, and lastly for fear that I am not observed to have attended the office business of late as much as I ought to do, though there has been nothing but my attendance on Tangier that has occasioned my absence, and that of late not much."

Touches the sore spot my Lord raised the other day, clearly hinting there was talk that Sam was neglecting Naval Office business for the Tangier work. Since everyone must be well aware that Tangier is a prized cash cow, it's understandable Sam is nervous-he might well be accused of neglecting his duty in order to focus on milking said cow. No one might formally accuse him...Too many have their hands in the till...But if the coming battle goes ill and blame lies in heaps, charges could surface and Sam might find himself vulnerable.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...where, to my great content, I find that, contrary to the practice and design of Sir W. Batten, to breake the rule and custom of the Company in choosing their Masters by succession, he would have brought in Sir W. Rider or Sir W. Pen, over the head of Hurleston (who is a knave too besides, I believe), the younger brothers did all oppose it against the elder, and with great heat did carry it for Hurleston, which I know will vex him to the heart."

"Brothers! Rise up and overthrow the tyranny of these old fools!" Hurleston cries, sword in hand. "Let your cry be...'Liberty, freedom, geriatic tyranny is dead!!'"

Silence from the younger crew...

"All right, a pound per vote and free drinks for all!"
Hurleston, shrugging.

"'Liberty, freedom...Whatever else he said...!" ringing cries from young blades, all swords drawn.

"Dogs! Scum!! This be no republic! Begone ye rogues!!" Batten cries...Sword in hand, older Brothers clustering.

All staring...All remembering that quote...

"Ummn...In the King's name, of course!!"

"Have at them, lads!!" Hurleston. Younger Brothers leap after him, charging the mass of Elders...

"Pepys?! Can we count on you?" Batten pausing by Sam's table. Elder Brothers not yet engaged likewise pausing, a bit winded by the run...Elder, after all.

"Though not an elder, you may my undivided support, Sir Will!" Sam calls from under the table, pausing in his jottings.

"Rout the old fools!!" Hurleston, clashing swords with several Elders, the younger Brothers in close support.

"Hold fast, Brothers!!" Batten cries as various Elder Brothers begin to falter...Bit tiring all this swordplay, after a heavy dinner. "Think of courageous old Penn on the seas, fighting for England!"

Not exactly like he's here now, one Elder notes to comrades. And Penn was never all that keen on Heading Trinity.

"Pepys?!" Hurleston, pausing in final mid-charge... "You have my undivided support, sir!!" Sam calls from under his table.

dirk   Link to this

The Rev. Ralph Josselin and his diary.
Today 22 May 1665...

"one Mr Talbot , killed in our town by a fall down his stairs at newhouse in Coln. on Sunday morning(,) he had never been at church since in town. Caplins son almost killed in the gravel pit(.) god good to me in the word, and at Cogshall where I preached to a great and attentive audience. god uphold my heart in his truth."

---

"he had never been at church since in town" - ominous phrasing here: maybe Mr Talbot's falling to his untimely death was God's punishment??? Could it be that the good Rev's comment here actually implies such a divine punishment - or is it my interpetation?

language hat   Link to this

"'Up, and down to the ships…'
I think this the best beginning of an entry to the diary so far."

He was obviously stealing from Pound:
"And then went down to the ship..."
http://www.americanpoems.com/poets/ezrapound/12625

Bob   Link to this

"the younger brothers did all oppose it against the elder"

Is this a rematch from last year?
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1664/06/06/#c13...
Does this sort of thing go on every year?

Martin   Link to this

"...the ships, which now are hindered from going down to the fleete (to our great sorrow and shame) with their provisions, the wind being against them."

Meanwhile, unbeknownst to London, on May 20 the fleet turned homeward from the Dutch coast due to a shortage of supplies.

(History of the maneuvers of the fleets, in Dutch: http://www.marine.nl/historie/marinemuseum/Webs...)

Australian Susan   Link to this

Josselin
It would be not unusual for a 17th century parson to believe in divine retribution and this was still held as a folk belief into the 20th century, although regarded as superstition by the educated. Also, remember that some people, in all seriousness, blamed the lightning strike on York Minster in the 1980s on the appointment of Jenkins to be Bishop of Durham, who has held to be not a true Christian by many.

CGS   Link to this

?Does this sort of thing go on every year?

Every year for the old [Sea] dog, it be needed to keep the Alpha position until he be outed by being back bitten by a freshly whelped young pup..

Pedro   Link to this

“on May 20 the fleet turned homeward from the Dutch coast due to a shortage of supplies.”

According to Montagu’s Journal this would translate to the 10th in the English Calendar when it was decided to return, and the actual sailing was on the 12th. It would be no great shock to London

The Fleet at this time had water and victuals to remain at sea for another 3 weeks. The shortage of supplies was no fault of the Navy Board on this occasion as the Fleet had been at sea for some weeks. In a Council of War on the17th April it was decided to go to Texel and return to the coast before the water was too near expended.

A further reason for the return is illustrated by Allin in his Journal, as he gives a more detailed account of just how rough it can be in these waters even at this time of year, and the routine damage that the weather causes to the ships.

The return home was also made as it was deemed that the presence of the Fleet was a hindrance and not furtherance to the Dutch coming out.

As for communication time between the Fleet and London it could be as little as 2 days. The letter that Terry informed us of being sent by Coventry on the 6th February, was received by Sandwich on the 8th.

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