Saturday 9 September 1665

Up and walked to Greenwich, and there we sat and dispatched a good deal of business I had a mind to. At noon, by invitation, to my Lord Bruncker’s, all of us, to dinner, where a good venison pasty, and mighty merry. Here was Sir W. Doyly, lately come from Ipswich about the sicke and wounded, and Mr. Evelyn and Captain Cocke. My wife also was sent for by my Lord Bruncker, by Cocke, and was here. After dinner, my Lord and his mistress would see her home again, it being a most cursed rainy afternoon, having had none a great while before, and I, forced to go to the office on foot through all the rain, was almost wet to my skin, and spoiled my silke breeches almost. Rained all the afternoon and evening, so as my letters being done, I was forced to get a bed at Captain Cocke’s, where I find Sir W. Doyly, and he, and Evelyn at supper; and I with them full of discourse of the neglect of our masters, the great officers of State, about all business, and especially that of money: having now some thousands prisoners, kept to no purpose at a great charge, and no money provided almost for the doing of it. We fell to talk largely of the want of some persons understanding to look after businesses, but all goes to rack. “For,” says Captain Cocke, “my Lord Treasurer, he minds his ease, and lets things go how they will: if he can have his 8000l. per annum, and a game at l’ombre, —[Spanish card game]— he is well. My Lord Chancellor he minds getting of money and nothing else; and my Lord Ashly will rob the Devil and the Alter, but he will get money if it be to be got.” But that that put us into this great melancholy, was newes brought to-day, which Captain Cocke reports as a certain truth, that all the Dutch fleete, men-of-war and merchant East India ships, are got every one in from Bergen the 3d of this month, Sunday last; which will make us all ridiculous. The fleete come home with shame to require a great deale of money, which is not to be had, to discharge many men that must get the plague then or continue at greater charge on shipboard, nothing done by them to encourage the Parliament to give money, nor the Kingdom able to spare any money, if they would, at this time of the plague, so that, as things look at present, the whole state must come to ruine. Full of these melancholy thoughts, to bed; where, though I lay the softest I ever did in my life, with a downe bed, after the Danish manner, upon me, yet I slept very ill, chiefly through the thoughts of my Lord Sandwich’s concernment in all this ill successe at sea.

18 Annotations

Australian Susan  •  Link

"...where a good venison pasty, and mighty merry...."

Sam always seems to be "mighty merry" after a v.p. Wonder if someone adds strange herbs to them? Hash pasty, anyone?

So Sam's current worst nightmare comes true: scores of seamen coming home and nothing to pay them off with - and the threat that, if they are allowed ashore, many will die of plague and thus decimate the numbers of experienced seamen available.
And he has now learned first hand from Evelyn of the problems of the sick and wounded and all the prisoners too. No wonder he slept "very ill", but is still able to record the sort of snippets we all find so appealing: his silk breeches spoiled and the novelty of sleeping under a duvet. Now I hope someone posts Evelyn's entry for today, so we get his take on the meeting, but I bet that has no mention of venison pasties, merriment or new modes of bedding.

cape henry  •  Link

A. Susan's summary reflects my thoughts perfectly. Imagine being a seaman - much less a prisoner - at this particular moment.

Margaret  •  Link

"...a downe bed, after the Danish manner"

I remember the first time I slept under a duvet--it was in Austria, in 1970. I had never even seen one before, either in Britain or Canada. It seemed very luxurious to me, as it was to Pepys. Now, of course, you can find them everywhere, even at Ikea.

JWB  •  Link

Ist das nicht ein Federbett?
Ya, das ist ein Federbett.

CGS  •  Link

Duvet was known to us poor as an eiderdown stuffed with goose or duck down cured after turning the pond life into Christmas dinners.
[Downe bed]

CGS  •  Link

OED: down, n.2
1. a. The first feathering of young birds. b. The fine soft covering of fowls, forming the under plumage, used for stuffing beds, pillows, etc.
c1369 CHAUCER ...
1600 HAKLUYT Voy. III. 267 (R.) Soft beds of downe or feathers.

other obscure meaning
down a

1. The burden of a song. (Cf. DOWN adv. 26.)
1611 COTGR.,

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Nice of Lord B and Abby to see Bess home...

Hmmn...Of course it would have been a perfect chance to pass on new orders from Holland or France via "Cozen Franke".

Just sayin'...

Well, Sam, you can at least blame all on the plague this year. Even Parliament has to concede that little problem adding to the difficulties.

Now do you see the advantage of having an Opposition you blame things on, Sam? If the Duke or Clarendon could just rant in Parliament or the press on the damned opposition of the "other side" fouling up the King's brilliant war strategy and dragging their feet on war credits, while casting aspersions on "their" patriotism things would look so much brighter.

Still you could always try blaming it all on Quakers and us foul Papists. That usually gets some mileage.

andy  •  Link

it being a most cursed rainy afternoon, having had none a great while before, and I, forced to go to the office on foot through all the rain, was almost wet to my skin, and spoiled my silke breeches almost. Rained all the afternoon and evening

Yeah I got soaked yesterday too, had to walk to a conference across town in an unseasonable cloudburst, it ruined the cut of my suit trousers (not silk breeches.

(I love the timelessness of Sam's observations!)

Carl in Boston  •  Link

Come to the Pepys Party at The Wayside Inn, this Saturday 2PM local time, at 72 Wayside Inn Rd, Sudbury MA 01776, telephone 978 443-1776. The "1776" refers to the year of the American Revolution, 1776 AD. There should be four of us, maybe more, but it's the right four. I will be in a red shirt, my cell phone is 781 521-4272
Long Live the Memory of Samuel Pepys
Carl Wickstrom

CGS  •  Link

[F. duvet down, earlier dumet, dim. of OF. dum down.]

1. A quilt stuffed with eider-down or swan's-down.
1758 JOHNSON Idler
There are now to be sold..some duvets for bed-coverings

Adam  •  Link

I did very similar yesterday, had a beef pasty and got soaked 'almost to the skin.' I will also agree that on a day like that, you do feel merrier with some warm meat inside you.

Hugh Duncan  •  Link

"...where I find Sir W. Doyly, and he, and Evelyn at supper...."

would this be Sir John Evelyn (who also wrote a diary), does anyone think?

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"would this be Sir John Evelyn"


Terry Foreman  •  Link

John Evelyn and today's discourse

Evelyn and Doyly were Commissioners for the Sick and Wounded, including POWs.

Phil Gyford  •  Link

Carl, just a nudge... I like to keep the annotations on diary entries relevant to the diary entry. If you'd like me to post something in the Site News section about meet ups I'm more than happy to. There is also the discussion group. Thanks.

Pedro  •  Link

"and my Lord Ashly will rob the Devil and the Alter,"

Great phrase, anyone kow the origin?

dirk  •  Link

From the Carte Papers, Bodleian Library

Sir W. Coventry to Duke of Ormond (Dublin)

Written from: York
Date: 9 September 1665

Yesterday brought a little good news, from my Lord Sandwich, of the taking of some Dutch ships... Has seen letters which complain that the coast of Lancashire is much infested with Capers. If his Grace could spare a frigate to scour that coast, it might conduce to the safety of Ireland.

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