Saturday 27 May 1665

Up, and to the office, where all the morning; at noon dined at home, and then to my office again, where late, and so to bed, with my mind full of fears for the business of this office and troubled with that of Tangier, concerning which Mr. Povy was with me, but do give me little help, but more reason of being troubled. So that were it not for our Plymouth business I would be glad to be rid of it.

6 Annotations

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"our Plymouth business"

L&M say this is the usual name by which he refers to the victualing of Tangier, which he counts on to provide him 300l. per annum. http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1664/07/16/

cape henry   Link to this

Re: Michael Robinson's comment yesterday:"Again one wonders how much of a ‘fool’ was Povey; he appears to have got out of the Tangier Treasury business, and transfered it to a willing and enthusiastic SP, within weeks of the moment that the cash flow ceased to be easy."

That was like the proverbial light bulb appearing over Donald Duck's head. Brilliant. And it explains the growing uneasiness Pepys has expressed for the past several weeks after his initial enthusiasm, which, if I recall, he sort of ginned up himself. Today's entry just more of the same.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Cross fingers and pray for victory at sea, Samuel. That instant lubricant of all things creditwise...

Perhaps Papa St. Michel has a prototype submarine handy...

"Yo ho, Bess!"

"Yo, ho, skipper!"

"Up unusual underwater optic device..."

"Papa called it a periscope, Sam'l..."

"Well, up with it, girl."

(Quiet, you...Bess and Sam look out at smirking annotator)

"There...See anything?"

"Avast, the rum-rumming blasted dogs of the Dutchmen..."

"What?"

"The Dutch fleet, blast you, girl."

Eyes stern face of wife... I mean, fun's fun, Sam'l...And it's great to be traveling together again even at life's peril...Though no worse than our trip to Ware...But there's no need for...

"Sorry...Just trying to get in character... Flood all...er the...Tank. Dive, dive!"

"All right, already..." Bess feverishly working hand pump...

"We're at maximum depth...Ten feet..."

Look from Sam...Well?...

"Cap't..." she sighs.

Still, he does look cute borrowing ole Cooper's extra patch and with that scarf round his head in place of that awful periwig...

"Increase speed...Hewer, Hayter!"

The two clerks frantically working the main drive crank of the propeller...St. Michel's improvement over Drebbel's underwater oars. "We're doin' all we can, Cap't." Hewer notes.

"Close to torpedo range on the flagship..."

Hmmn?...Hewer and Hayter stare...

"Oh, it's wonderful...Papa's most brilliant idea yet..." Bess gushes. "Remember that long spar thing we had on in front? Well, Papa's set it up so it's attached to enough gunpowder in a sealed chest to blow up half of London...And when we ram a ship and pull back to a safe distance."

"How far back? With the whole Dutch fleet firing at us?" Hewer asks.

"Underwater, Mr. Hewer..." Cap't Sam displays a bravado he does not feel. But hey, it's either use crackpot Papa's device to sink the enemy fleet and free up the credit system...Or face a Charles Stuart who can't get easy credit. Not to mention a Lady Castlemaine who can't get large gifts without said easy credit.

"Battle speed, gentlemen..." signal to Bess who begins banging in rhythm on two wood blocks with a mallet. Got it from the Romans, Sam notes to Hewer, another peek through underwater optical device.

"Attack speed..." Bess pounds faster...

"Ramming speed...!"

"Whoops...!" Sam eyes the ship bearing down on them...Damn must have spotted the breathing thing.

Whoops...? Hewer and Hayter ponder the order...Ummn...

"Papa said the Dutch would recognize it if we used Drebbel's snorkel..." Bess notes.

"Full reverse!!..."

Arggh...The two clerks groan...

"Take her down to fifteen feet!"

"Sam'l? That's crush depth..."

"Dive, dive!! That's an order, blast you, mate!!"

Stern look...

"And a heartfelt plea, my love..."
***

Spoiler...

Well, Povy may have outfoxed our boy for the moment...But in the long run...

Roger   Link to this

re yesterday, 'up 4 o'clock'...etc

No wonder Sam is 'troubled', the poor guy must be knackered! 16-hour days seem a regular thing with him. I notice now that it's getting light in London at 4GMT presently so I suppose it may have been commonplace to rise with the sun?
For weather buffs...to the right you will see that the average temperature for May 1665 was about 10C, fully 4 degs(maybe more)below that for this May. Maybe the weather was getting him down too?

Phil   Link to this

I'm not sure Povy would be able to get the Tangier Treasurer position back even if Sam were to cry UNCLE and ask to be relieved. The pressure on Sam does not appear to be coming from members of the Tangier committee, as it did for Povy, but rather from the taxing work created by the account. Sam balances his personal accounts by keeping record of both his little and large expenditures. If he's applying the same accounting principles to the Tangier records he likely has 10 times the paper work that Povy kept on the same account.

I think Sam has the same problem that Povy had when it comes to spending the money in the various Tangier projects. Unlike his Navy job, where the money is spent in England and he has the opportunity to see, feel or smell the product, Tangier is along way away. He needs verbal confirmation and receipts, he has soldiers overseeing labourers and pirates overseeing the supplies. Then there's Povy to remind Sam what a tongue lashing feels like by Peterborough if Sam should screw up and saying things like "When I was Treasurer this is how I did it..",hardly confidence building.

Of all the people I know in the 1665, I believe the Tangier committee has the right guy as Treasurer and they should be worried that Sam is weighing the Tangier headaches v's the Plymouth 300L.

PS. What could be more English than reading Robert Gertz to the music of "Yellow Submarine"

cgs   Link to this

The weather in the Colne valley be, according to Rev Josselin
"..p 147-
May. 14.
9 dyed last weeke, the drought doth not only continue, but y e heat
groweth very much. Lord helpe us to gett into y e gap to turn
away thy wrath. ..."

http://ia331326.us.archive.org/3/items/diaryofr...

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