Wednesday 25 October 1665

Up and to my Lord Sandwich’s, where several Commanders, of whom I took the state of all their ships, and of all could find not above four capable of going out. The truth is, the want of victuals being the whole overthrow of this yeare both at sea, and now at the Nore here and Portsmouth, where all the fleete lies. By and by comes down my Lord, and then he and I an houre together alone upon private discourse. He tells me that Mr. Coventry and he are not reconciled, but declared enemies: the only occasion of it being, he tells me, his ill usage from him about the first fight, wherein he had no right done him, which, methinks, is a poor occasion, for, in my conscience, that was no design of Coventry’s. But, however, when I asked my Lord whether it were not best, though with some condescension, to be friends with him, he told me it was not possible, and so I stopped. He tells me, as very private, that there are great factions at the Court between the King’s party and the Duke of Yorke’s, and that the King, which is a strange difficulty, do favour my Lord in opposition to the Duke’s party; that my Lord Chancellor, being, to be sure, the patron of the Duke’s, it is a mystery whence it should be that Mr. Coventry is looked upon by him [Clarendon] as an enemy to him; that if he had a mind himself to be out of this employment, as Mr. Coventry, he believes, wishes, and himself and I do incline to wish it also, in many respects, yet he believes he shall not be able, because of the King, who will keepe him in on purpose, in opposition to the other party; that Prince Rupert and he are all possible friends in the world; that Coventry hath aggravated this business of the prizes, though never so great plundering in the world as while the Duke and he were at sea; and in Sir John Lawson’s time he could take and pillage, and then sink a whole ship in the Streights, and Coventry say nothing to it; that my Lord Arlington is his fast friend; that the Chancellor is cold to him, and though I told him that I and the world do take my Lord Chancellor, in his speech the other day, to have said as much as could be wished, yet he thinks he did not. That my Lord Chancellor do from hence begin to be cold to him, because of his seeing him and Arlington so great: that nothing at Court is minded but faction and pleasure, and nothing intended of general good to the kingdom by anybody heartily; so that he believes with me, in a little time confusion will certainly come over all the nation. He told me how a design was carried on a while ago, for the Duke of Yorke to raise an army in the North, and to be the Generall of it, and all this without the knowledge or advice of the Duke of Albemarle, which when he come to know, he was so vexed, they were fain to let it fall to content him: that his matching with the family of Sir G. Carteret do make the difference greater between Coventry and him, they being enemies; that the Chancellor did, as every body else, speak well of me the other day, but yet was, at the Committee for Tangier, angry that I should offer to suffer a bill of exchange to be protested. So my Lord did bid me take heed, for that I might easily suppose I could not want enemies, no more than others. In all he speaks with the greatest trust and love and confidence in what I say or do, that a man can do. After this discourse ended we sat down to dinner and mighty merry, among other things, at the Bill brought into the House to make it felony to break bulke, which, as my Lord says well, will make that no prizes shall be taken, or, if taken, shall be sunke after plundering; and the Act for the method of gathering this last 1,250,000l. now voted, and how paid wherein are several strange imperfections. After dinner my Lord by a ketch down to Erith, where the Bezan was, it blowing these last two days and now both night and day very hard southwardly, so that it has certainly drove the Dutch off the coast. My Lord being gone I to the office, and there find Captain Ferrers, who tells me his wife is come to town to see him, having not seen him since 15 weeks ago at his first going to sea last. She is now at a Taverne and stays all night, so I was obliged to give him my house and chamber to lie in, which he with great modesty and after much force took, and so I got Mr. Evelyn’s coach to carry her thither, and the coach coming back, I with Mr. Evelyn to Deptford, where a little while with him doing a little business, and so in his coach back again to my lodgings, and there sat with Mrs. Ferrers two hours, and with my little girle, Mistress Frances Tooker, and very pleasant. Anon the Captain comes, and then to supper very merry, and so I led them to bed. And so to bed myself, having seen my pretty little girle home first at the next door.

11 Annotations

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...and there find Captain Ferrers, who tells me his wife is come to town to see him, having not seen him since 15 weeks ago at his first going to sea last. She is now at a Taverne and stays all night, so I was obliged to give him my house and chamber to lie in, which he with great modesty and after much force took, and so I got Mr. Evelyn’s coach to carry her thither..."

"Why Samuel Pepys, you romantic..." Bess grins...

"And so to bed myself, having seen my pretty little girle home first at the next door."

Heavenly door slam...

"Bess? Bess?!"

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"Act for the method of gathering this last 1,250,000l. now voted"

The Unanimity of both Houses. ; 1,250,000 Pounds voted.

Upon this, and the King's Speech, the House of Commons with great Unanimity came to these two present Resolutions: 'First, That the humble and hearty Thanks of this House be return'd to his Majesty for his Care and Conduct in the Preservation of his People, and the Honour of this Nation: And that this House will assist his Majesty with their Lives and Fortunes against the Dutch, or any other that shall assist them in Opposition to his Majesty. Secondly, That the humble Thanks of this House be return'd to his Majesty for the Care he hath had of the Person of his Royal Highness, the Duke of York.' To both which Votes the Lords gave their chearful Concurrence; and so both Houses went in a full Body to attend his Majesty upon this Occasion. The Commons, to make good their Promise, voted a new Supply of twelve hundred and fifty thousand Pounds, to be rais'd by a proportionable Addition to the Monthly Assessment to begin at Christmas next; all which they soon turn'd into a Bill. After which they brought in another Bill for a Month's further Assessment of a hundred and twenty thousand Pounds, to commence from the Expiration of the former Assessment, to be granted to his Majesty, with a desire to his Majesty to dispose of it to his Royal Highness the Duke of York. http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?co...

Terry Foreman   Link to this

The above levy (17 Car. II c.i passed on 31 October) would be "a new venture in English public finance" in which bills would be paid by the Exchequer on credit, bypassing the Treasury, denying Carteret his poundage and other profits. SPOILER - On 31 Oct. we will see Pepys's scapticism of financing on credit (a concern he will share with Carteret and the bankers); but the scheme is a success. (L&M note 6 November 1665 http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1665/11/06/

Martin   Link to this

"And so to bed myself, having seen my pretty little girle home first at the next door."

You're getting a little creepy there, Sam. Just how old is this little girle, does anyone know?

Australian Susan   Link to this

Re Terry's note: At this time, the Crown was expected to live off its own income (Crown lands etc) and votings of money by Parliament were for expenses in time of war. But this system is creaking: thus the reference to money on credit.
SPOILER After the 1688 accession of W & M, Royal finances were put on the footing which still pertain today (though it's for different purposes now) - that the Crown got monies from Parliament, even in peacetime. And State finances were greatly helped by the founding of the Bank of England in 1694 to manage Government debt. See http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/about/history/in...

Australian Susan   Link to this

"....and so to bed myself...."

One does wonder, just where exactly?

Anyone else think Sam is being a bit too sweaty-palmed about all this? "...and so I led them to bed..." If i was Mrs F, I'd be mortified. And she has had to endure two hours of chat (innuendous chat?) with him too.

Michael Robinson   Link to this

"By and by comes down my Lord, and then he and I an houre together alone upon private discourse. ..."

Interesting that SP does not read the political weather and decide immediately to get out of the prize goods business with Cocke; already there have been untoward and repeated apparently random low level official interventions and, given the ructions described at a senior level, there are defiantly going to be problems for those below whatever the ultimate resolution may be ...

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

so that he believes with me, in a little time confusion will certainly come over all the nation....After this discourse ended we sat down to dinner and mighty merry, among other things, at the Bill brought into the House to make it felony to break bulke, which, as my Lord says well, will make that no prizes shall be taken, or, if take n, shall be sunke after plundering; and the Act for the method of gathering this last 1,250,000l. now voted, and how paid wherein are several strange imperfections.

Reminds me of the occasion around 1971 when Dr. James Schlesinger, later Director of Central Intelligence, Secretary of Defense and Secretary of Energy, and at the time assistant budget director for national security, told a colleague, "This world will end, not with a bang, not with a whimper, but to the sound of derisive laughter."

Ruben   Link to this

“….and so to bed myself….”

11 october:
"...also comes up my landlady, Mrs. Clerke, to make an agreement for the time to come; and I, for the having room enough, and to keepe out strangers, and to have a place to retreat to for my wife, if the sicknesse should come to Woolwich, am contented to pay dear; so for three rooms and a dining-room, and for linen and bread and beer and butter, at nights and mornings, I am to give her 5l. 10s. per month, and I wrote and we signed to an agreement."
So, Samuel had 2 more rooms to choose, that he kept empty (in reserve) and the dining-room.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"[My Lord Sandwich] told me how a design was carried on a while ago, for the Duke of Yorke to raise an army in the North, and to be the Generall of it, and all this without the knowledge or advice of the Duke of Albemarle,...."

L&M say such "rumours were comman in 1665-7", expressing distrust of the Duke of York and the Lord High Chancellor (Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon).

Australian Susan   Link to this

Charles, by not doing very much, kept his popularity, whereas James, who wanted to be much more active, ended up being an object of suspicion and much disliked - sowing the seeds for the future, when all his actions tended to be interpreted in the worst possible light.
Remember the anecdote about James telling his brother to be careful of an unruly mob and Charles telling his brother he had nothing to fear as people would not want to kill him as it would put James on the throne.

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