Sunday 15 October 1665

(Lord’s day). Up, and while I staid for the barber, tried to compose a duo of counterpoint, and I think it will do very well, it being by Mr. Berckenshaw’s rule. By and by by appointment comes Mr. Povy’s coach, and, more than I expected, him himself, to fetch me to Brainford: so he and I immediately set out, having drunk a draft of mulled sacke; and so rode most nobly, in his most pretty and best contrived charriott in the world, with many new conveniences, his never having till now, within a day or two, been yet finished; our discourse upon Tangier business, want of money, and then of publique miscarriages, nobody minding the publique, but every body himself and his lusts. Anon we come to his house, and there I eat a bit, and so with fresh horses, his noble fine horses, the best confessedly in England, the King having none such, he sent me to Sir Robert Viner’s, whom I met coming just from church, and so after having spent half-an-hour almost looking upon the horses with some gentlemen that were in company, he and I into his garden to discourse of money, but none is to be had, he confessing himself in great straits, and I believe it. Having this answer, and that I could not get better, we fell to publique talke, and to think how the fleete and seamen will be paid, which he protests he do not think it possible to compass, as the world is now: no money got by trade, nor the persons that have it by them in the City to be come at. The Parliament, it seems, have voted the King 1,250,000l. at 50,000l. per month, tax for the war; and voted to assist the King against the Dutch, and all that shall adhere to them; and thanks to be given him for his care of the Duke of Yorke, which last is a very popular vote on the Duke’s behalf. He tells me how the taxes of the last assessment, which should have been in good part gathered, are not yet laid, and that even in part of the City of London; and the Chimny- money comes almost to nothing, nor any thing else looked after. Having done this I parted, my mind not eased by any money, but only that I had done my part to the King’s service. And so in a very pleasant evening back to Mr. Povy’s, and there supped, and after supper to talke and to sing, his man Dutton’s wife singing very pleasantly (a mighty fat woman), and I wrote out one song from her and pricked the tune, both very pretty. But I did never heare one sing with so much pleasure to herself as this lady do, relishing it to her very heart, which was mighty pleasant.

14 Annotations

Terry Foreman   Link to this

“I…tried to compose a duo of counterpoint, and I think it will do very well, it being by Mr. Berckenshaw's rule.”

February 24, 26-27 1661/62 Pepys spent under John Birchensha’s tutelage.

"• Per L&M, Sam is referring to a single-sheet guide by Berkenshaw entitled “Rules and Directions for composing in Parts”. Today it might be called “Songwriting for Dummies”."
Rex Gordon on Fri 25 Feb 2005, 02:08pm. http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1662/02/24/#c28036

On the 27th, SP and JB came to this pass:

“This morning came Mr. Berkenshaw to me and in our discourse I, finding that he cries up his rules for most perfect (though I do grant them to be very good, and the best I believe that ever yet were made), and that I could not persuade him to grant wherein they were somewhat lame, we fell to angry words, so that in a pet he flung out of my chamber and I never stopped him, having intended to put him off today, whether this had happened or no, because I think I have all the rules that he hath to give.”

http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1662/02/27/

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

But I did never heare one sing with so much pleasure to herself as this lady do, relishing it to her very heart, which was mighty pleasant.

Sam at his very generous best.

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

Uh oh, the fat lady's singing -- does this mean it's over?

Michael Robinson   Link to this

" ... I wrote out one song from her and pricked the tune, ..."

Prick song, or tune, uses tablature notation "which tells players where to place their fingers on a particular instrument rather than which pitches to play."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tablature

Michael Robinson   Link to this

" ... want of money, and then of publique miscarriages, ..."

Algernon. [Picking up empty plate in horror.] Good heavens! Lane! Why are there no cucumber sandwiches? I ordered them specially.

Lane. [Gravely.] There were no cucumbers in the market this morning, sir. I went down twice.

Algernon. No cucumbers!

Lane. No, sir. Not even for ready money.

Algernon. That will do, Lane, thank you.

Lane. Thank you, sir. [Goes out.]

Algernon. I am greatly distressed, Aunt Augusta, about there being no cucumbers, not even for ready money.

Lady Bracknell. It really makes no matter, Algernon. I had some crumpets with Lady Harbury, who seems to me to be living entirely for pleasure now.

Algernon. I hear her hair has turned quite gold from grief.

http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Importance_of...

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...nobody minding the publique, but every body himself and his lusts."

Heaven...

"Bess, would you please stop laughing? I was a model husband after all, after you possessed that poor 17 year-old in '70."

"Sam'l..." nervous look round...

"What? She didn't mind, poor girl already wanted to die a virginal nun when she contracted that fatal illness. And she felt so badly for poor remorse-stricken widower me. Besides, we're in Heaven...I should think the Almighty knows all."

"Yes, but people might talk..."

"Bess... With all they could say about me?"

"True enough..."

"Of course Balty would never forgive you for the way you treated him as Mary if he knew."

"Oh, he was getting much too dependent on you those last years. And he should have recognized me."

***

AussieRene   Link to this

Looks like the Kings finances are on par with the US today. A bit of graft here, a bit of greed there...a necessity then, pure pig greed now.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...and thanks to be given him for his care of the Duke of Yorke, which last is a very popular vote on the Duke’s behalf."

Now that must have been a wistful read after 1688.

In hindsight it's easy to see that had Jamie taken the reigns on the prize goods matter firmly and publicly demanded the goods to be put to the men's and fleet's advantage he might have sent William packing or never faced such a threat. Interesting, tragic mix in him...And ironic that a little of Charles' levity and political shrewdness to add to the dutiful diligence bequeathed by his father might have saved him.

jeannine   Link to this

“want of money, and then of publique miscarriages”

Some things never change, but at least now we can understand what a Financial Crisis really is…sort of like telling Lady Castlemaine, after a hard night of her crying for money, how good she looks…….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_o4IcNbfPMA

And for Michael Robinson and Ernest, even Cucumbers don’t have such a worrisome life….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNtcNpjON5Q

Carl in Boston   Link to this

And the fat lady sings
She was laying down the boogie, didn't care if she got paid or if anybody cared, she had to do it. It's Art.

Australian Susan   Link to this

"...his noble fine horses, the best confessedly in England, the King having none such,......spent half-an-hour almost looking upon the horses with some gentlemen that were in company...."

I think this is the equivalent of gathering round someone's new Porsche and drooling quietly.

Note the reference to the King: Charles loved racing and did much to commence the proper breeding of the Thoroughbred, although his grandfather (JI) was supposed to have been the first to import an Arab horse into England. See the link below to learn about the royal connection with the development of the breed. It is said that the Queen reads The Sporting Life (a racing paper) with breakfast and only ever becomes animated when talking about horses: obviously in the blood. alas, of the premier horse races in the country, the Queen has only ever had a St Leger winner.
http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Estates/3095...

JWB   Link to this

fine horses...

"Uncovering a protectoral stud: horses and horse-breeding at the court of Oliver Cromwell, 1653–8*"
Patrick Little
ABSTRACT
"According to the traditional view, the breeding of high quality horses collapsed after the execution of Charles I and the dispersal of the royal stud at Tutbury. This article questions this assumption by looking at Oliver Cromwell's interest in horses and in particular his efforts as protector to import Neapolitan coursers, Barbs and Arabian horses to improve English bloodstock. The effects of this on the development of the thoroughbred is debateable, but Cromwell's activities had important political by-products, as foreign dignitaries were impressed, aristocratic breeders were drawn into government circles, and the protector himself grew closer to those civilians at court who shared his love of horses"

http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/1201...

Australian Susan   Link to this

Good point, JWB - but Oliver C was looking to improve cavalry mounts (the part of the Army he was most involved with), not the frivolity of racing, which underlay CII's obsession with bloodstock. He did love good horses for their own sake though and hated the inevitable deaths of horses in battle.

JWB   Link to this

Ford Madox Brown sits Oliver on an Arabian.

http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/online/exhib...

Log in to post an annotation.

If you don't have an account, then register here.