Thursday 8 June 1665

About five o’clock my wife come home, it having lightened all night hard, and one great shower of rain. She come and lay upon the bed; I up and to the office, where all the morning. Alone at home to dinner, my wife, mother, and Mercer dining at W. Joyce’s; I giving her a caution to go round by the Half Moone to his house, because of the plague. I to my Lord Treasurer’s by appointment of Sir Thomas Ingram’s, to meet the Goldsmiths; where I met with the great news at last newly come, brought by Bab May from the Duke of Yorke, that we have totally routed the Dutch; that the Duke himself, the Prince, my Lord Sandwich, and Mr. Coventry are all well: which did put me into such joy, that I forgot almost all other thoughts. The particulars I shall set down by and by. By and by comes Alderman Maynell and Mr. Viner, and there my Lord Treasurer did intreat them to furnish me with money upon my tallys, Sir Philip Warwicke before my Lord declaring the King’s changing of the hand from Mr. Povy to me, whom he called a very sober person, and one whom the Lord Treasurer would owne in all things that I should concern myself with them in the business of money. They did at present declare they could not part with money at present. My Lord did press them very hard, and I hope upon their considering we shall get some of them. Thence with great joy to the Cocke-pitt; where the Duke of Albemarle, like a man out of himself with content, new-told me all; and by and by comes a letter from Mr. Coventry’s own hand to him, which he never opened (which was a strange thing), but did give it me to open and read, and consider what was fit for our office to do in it, and leave the letter with Sir W. Clerke; which upon such a time and occasion was a strange piece of indifference, hardly pardonable. I copied out the letter, and did also take minutes out of Sir W. Clerke’s other letters; and the sum of the newes is:

Victory over the Dutch, June 3rd, 1665.

This day they engaged; the Dutch neglecting greatly the opportunity of the wind they had of us, by which they lost the benefit of their fire- ships. The Earl of Falmouth, Muskerry, and Mr. Richard Boyle killed on board the Duke’s ship, the Royall Charles, with one shot: their blood and brains flying in the Duke’s face; and the head of Mr. Boyle striking down the Duke, as some say. Earle of Marlborough, Portland, Rear-Admirall Sansum (to Prince Rupert) killed, and Capt. Kirby and Ableson. Sir John Lawson wounded on the knee; hath had some bones taken out, and is likely to be well again. Upon receiving the hurt, he sent to the Duke for another to command the Royall Oake. The Duke sent Jordan1 out of the St. George, who did brave things in her. Capt. Jer. Smith of the Mary was second to the Duke, and stepped between him and Captain Seaton of the Urania (76 guns and 400 men), who had sworn to board the Duke; killed him, 200 men, and took the ship; himself losing 99 men, and never an officer saved but himself and lieutenant. His master indeed is saved, with his leg cut off: Admirall Opdam blown up, Trump killed, and said by Holmes; all the rest of their admiralls, as they say, but Everson (whom they dare not trust for his affection to the Prince of Orange), are killed: we having taken and sunk, as is believed, about 24 of their best ships; killed and taken near 8 or 10,000 men, and lost, we think, not above 700. A great[er] victory never known in the world. They are all fled, some 43 got into the Texell, and others elsewhere, and we in pursuit of the rest. Thence, with my heart full of joy; home, and to my office a little; then to my Lady Pen’s, where they are all joyed and not a little puffed up at the good successe of their father;1 and good service indeed is said to have been done by him. Had a great bonefire at the gate; and I with my Lady Pen’s people and others to Mrs. Turner’s great room, and then down into the streete. I did give the boys 4s. among them, and mighty merry. So home to bed, with my heart at great rest and quiett, saving that the consideration of the victory is too great for me presently to comprehend.

Mrs. Ady (Julia Cartwright), in her fascinating life of Henrietta, Duchess of Orleans, gives an account of the receipt of the news of the great sea-fight in Paris, and quotes a letter of Charles II. to his sister, dated, “Whitehall, June 8th, 1665” The first report that reached Paris was that “the Duke of York’s ship had been blown up, and he himself had been drowned.” “The shock was too much for Madame … she was seized with convulsions, and became so dangerously ill that Lord Hollis wrote to the king, ‘If things had gone ill at sea I really believe Madame would have died.’” Charles wrote: “I thanke God we have now the certayne newes of a very considerable victory over the Duch; you will see most of the particulars by the relation my Lord Hopis will shew you, though I have had as great a losse as ‘tis possible in a good frinde, poore C. Barckely. It troubles me so much, as I hope you will excuse the shortnesse of this letter, haveing receaved the newes of it but two houres agoe” (“Madame,” 1894, pp. 215, 216).

  1. Afterwards Sir Joseph Jordan, commander of the “Royal Sovereign,” and Vice-Admiral of the Red, 1672. He was knighted on July 1st, 1665. — B.
  2. In the royal charter granted by Charles II. in 1680 to William Penn for the government of his American province, to be styled Pennsylvania, special reference is made to “the memory and merits of Sir William Penn in divers services, and particularly his conduct, courage, and discretion under our dearest brother, James, Duke of York, in that signal battle and victory fought and obtained against the Dutch fleet commanded by Heer van Opdam in 1665” (Penn’s “Memorials of Sir W. Penn,” vol. ii., p. 359).

23 Annotations

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"it having lightened all night hard"

light·en 1 (ltn)
v. light·ened, light·en·ing, light·ens
v.intr.
3. To give off flashes of lightning.
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/lighten

Sjoerd   Link to this

Three Tromps
It was not Tromp that was killed, but Kortenaer.
According to Wikipedia, Tromp was captured and escaped, which is true but it concerns the ship "Tromp". Which was named after the father of this Cornelius Tromp, Maarten Tromp.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...not a little puffed up at the good successe of their father;1 and good service indeed is said to have been done by him." Sam is generous in his relief at victory, even to his nemesis Penn.

***
Interesting..."...my wife come home..." Not a thought for exhausted ole Mum or poor Will Hewer who'd had to put up with his charges all night long. But Sam was probably desperate for her comforting presence. Perhaps we can infer that he is generally much more dependent on her than the Diary will ever openly admit.

***
"...not to go round by the Half Moon..." The plague begins to intrude on daily life.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Whoops. To go round, not not to go round...Reading too fast early in the am.

JWB   Link to this

"'...to go round by the Half Moon…” The plague begins to intrude on daily life.'

Yes, it's like avoiding streets where you know buildings are undergoing asbestos abatement today.

JWB   Link to this

Chas II's letter

Do you suppose he pronounced any or all of those word ending "e's", like some Southern Bapstist preacher?

jeannine   Link to this

“though I have had as great a losse as ‘tis possible in a good frinde, poore C. Barckely

This refers to Sir Charles Berkeley, who Sam has mentioned before, usually without anything positive to say. Although a good friend to the King, he was not universally well liked. In his biography annotation there is a portion of a poem by Sir John Denham describing the activity on board that led to his death.

The Poet Sir John Denham presented in his "Directions to a painter concerning the Dutch War":

Falmouth was there, I know not what to act,
Some say, ‘twas to grow duke too by contract;
An untaught bullet, in his wanton scope,
Dashes him all to pieces, and his hope:
Such was his rise, such was his fall unpraised,
A chance shot sooner took him than chance raised;
His shattered head the fearless duke disdains,
And gave the last first proof that he had brains

http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/1686/

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

Admirall Opdam

A moment of silence, please, for my late lamented brother-in-law's forebear.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"the royal charter granted by Charles II. in 1680 to William Penn for the government of his American province, to be styled Pennsylvania, special reference is made to 'the memory and merits of Sir William Penn in divers services, and particularly his conduct, courage, and discretion under our dearest brother, James, Duke of York, in that signal battle and victory fought and obtained against the Dutch fleet commanded by Heer van Opdam in 1665'”

The charter and the reference therein (except for "Opdam" [q.v], spelled in a different way): http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/states/pa01.htm

Pedro   Link to this

Capt. Jer. Smith of the Mary was second to the Duke, and stepped between him and Captain Seaton of the Urania…...Trump killed”

Sam seem to be copying from various sources, but in his Memorials to his grandfather Granville Penn gives an account of the battle by L’Estrange, and believes it to be a copy of the letter from Coventry to Monck, and written on the 10th June 1665.

The fatalities on the Dutch side seem to be given by prisoners and most said Tromp, but for certain the news would have to come from Holland.

According to the Journal of Montagu Bastiaan Senten was commander of the Oranje with 75 guns and 450 men, and there is no mention of a Dutch ship called Urania.

Pedro   Link to this

Recent Activity.

Any news about its illness?

It is frustrating that any information found on past events and posted by annotators could be lost in the ether!

dirk   Link to this

John Evelyn's diary today

"Came newes of his Highnesse Victory over the Enemie, & indeede it might have ben a compleate one, & at once ended the Warr, had it ben pursued: but the Cowardize of some, Tretchery, or both frustrated that: we had however bonfires, bells, & rejoicing in the Citty &c."

dirk   Link to this

The mathematics of war: "we having taken and sunk, as is believed, about 24 of their best ships; killed and taken near 8"

The truth: 8 Dutch ships were sunk and 9 were taken by the British
cf. http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1665/06/03/#c21...
source: http://www.vocsite.nl/geschiedenis/engelseoorlo...
(confirmed by http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Lowestoft )

24 sunk vs. 8 makes for a multiplier of 3
Propaganda or just bragging?

GrahamT   Link to this

Oranje vs Urania
Pedro, I was hoping one of our Dutch annotators would comment. From my imperfect knowledge of Dutch pronunciation, I believe the j is pronounced like English y, e.g. jacht - yacht, and the final e is voiced. To an English ear Oranje could sound like Urania, especially if we assume the initial U is pronounced uh - as in Urdu, not yu - as in urine.

Pedro   Link to this

Propaganda or just bragging?

In this case it is probably neither. Sam is copying from more than one source, the main being an account sent back by Coventyry from the battle itself.

We see that it contains the assumption that Tromp has been killed and has other inaccuracies. Granville Penn (p326) sites the letter as being reproduced by L’Estrange and in this it states that it “is concluded that we have destroyed 23 or 24 but a perfect accurate account will follow.”

For propaganda and bragging we will have to consult the Intelligencer.


Pedro   Link to this

Oranje vs Urania

Paul, you are probably right as Wikipedia says…

“Through such an action Montague's flagship was boarded and temporarily taken over by the crew of Oranje, commanded by captain Bastian Senten, who even raised the Dutch flag on the Prince Royal until Rupert himself on Royal James came to the rescue retaking the ship.”

However the above account seems strange as it is not mentioned in this way by Sandwich, more later!

Pedro   Link to this

Oranje vs Urania

Sorry Graham, don't know how Paul came into my head!

dirk   Link to this

Dutch pronunciation

Graham & Pedro, as you may know, Dutch is my native language - and I wouldn't even have dreamt of describing the pronunciation of "Oranje" the way you did ;-) BUT "Urania" turns out to be a fair phonetic description (provided the first "a" sound is pronounced as in "hat" and not as in "late").

So the confusion Oranje/Urania is probably what happened here.

Clement   Link to this

"taken and destroyed...24 of their best ships"

versus actual number taken and destroyed of 17 (8+9 per Dirk's link), not so far off for an initial approximation the day after the battle.

dirk   Link to this

"we having taken and sunk, as is believed, about 24 of their best ships; killed and taken near 8 or 10,000 men"

Clement, you're absolutely right of course. I was to hasty, and should have read Sam's text more carefully. I herewith withdraw my earlier remark ;-|

dirk   Link to this

Some letters of condolence from the Carte Papers (Bodleian Library), in this case about a Lord Muskery.

In spite of some of the (inevitable?) standard phrasing of the letters, I find them rather touching, particularly the Duke's concern for his sister Clancarty.

http://www.bodley.ox.ac.uk/dept/scwmss/projects...

Duke of Ormond to Lady Thurles

Written from: Whitehall
Date: 9 June 1665

It has pleased God, in the late fight betwixt us and and the Dutch to give the King a great victory, and her Ladyship and all that are come from her a great loss, in the death of the writer's nephew Muskery, who was killed close by the Duke of York, with a great shot, which also took away the Earl of Falmouth and Mr Richard Boyle ...

"I was desired", adds the Duke, "to give my sister Clancarty notice of this misfortune ... but I conceive it will be needful that your Ladyship should send for her ... to give some stop to her grief, which the solitude she is in may too much nourish" ...

--------------

Duke of Ormond to Lady Clancarty

Written from: Whitehall
Date: 9 June 1665

"It is not the length or the words of a preamble that can abate the bitterness of the matter. I shall therefore, without the affliction of circumstances, tell you it falls to my share to inform you that your son Muskery was killed in the late conflict ... That your son is generally lamented & well spoken may aggravate your sense of such a loss ... It must be the work of some time, but principally of pious reflection upon the submission due from us to the good pleasure of God, to give consolation proportionable to such an affliction" ...

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"the Duke of Albemarle..., new-told me all; and by and by comes a letter from Mr. Coventry’s own hand to him, which he...did give it me to open and read, and consider what was fit for our office to do in it, and leave the letter with Sir W. Clerke; which upon such a time and occasion was a strange piece of indifference, hardly pardonable. I copied out the letter, and did also take minutes out of Sir W. Clerke’s other letters "
_

MR. COVENTRY TO THE DUKE OF ALBEMARLE [transcribed by Pepys, to which he annexed]

CAPTAIN JEREMY SMITH TO THE DUKE OF ALBEMARLE

The life, journals and correspondence of Samuel Pepys, &c. Volume I, pp. 85ff., 93f.

http://books.google.com/books?id=gBc6AAAAcAAJ&p...

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