Up, and to my office, where busy all the morning and then to dinner to Captain Cocke’s with Mr. Evelyn, where very merry, only vexed after dinner to stay too long for our coach. At last, however, to Lambeth and thence the Cockpitt, where we found Sir G. Carteret come, and in with the Duke and the East India Company about settling the business of the prizes, and they have gone through with it. Then they broke up, and Sir G. Carteret come out, and thence through the garden to the water side and by water I with him in his boat down with Captain Cocke to his house at Greenwich, and while supper was getting ready Sir G. Carteret and I did walk an houre in the garden before the house, talking of my Lord Sandwich’s business; what enemies he hath, and how they have endeavoured to bespatter him: and particularly about his leaving of 30 ships of the enemy, when Pen would have gone, and my Lord called him back again: which is most false. However, he says, it was purposed by some hot-heads in the House of Commons, at the same time when they voted a present to the Duke of Yorke, to have voted 10,000l. to the Prince, and half-a-crowne to my Lord of Sandwich; but nothing come of it.1 But, for all this, the King is most firme to my Lord, and so is my Lord Chancellor, and my Lord Arlington. The Prince, in appearance, kind; the Duke of Yorke silent, says no hurt; but admits others to say it in his hearing. Sir W. Pen, the falsest rascal that ever was in the world; and that this afternoon the Duke of Albemarle did tell him that Pen was a very cowardly rogue, and one that hath brought all these rogueish fanatick Captains into the fleete, and swears he should never go out with the fleete again. That Sir W. Coventry is most kind to Pen still; and says nothing nor do any thing openly to the prejudice of my Lord. He agrees with me, that it is impossible for the King [to] set out a fleete again the next year; and that he fears all will come to ruine, there being no money in prospect but these prizes, which will bring, it may be, 20,000l., but that will signify nothing in the world for it. That this late Act of Parliament for bringing the money into the Exchequer, and making of it payable out there, intended as a prejudice to him and will be his convenience hereafter and ruine the King’s business, and so I fear it will and do wonder Sir W. Coventry would be led by Sir G. Downing to persuade the King and Duke to have it so, before they had thoroughly weighed all circumstances; that for my Lord, the King has said to him lately that I was an excellent officer, and that my Lord Chancellor do, he thinks, love and esteem of me as well as he do of any man in England that he hath no more acquaintance with. So having done and received from me the sad newes that we are like to have no money here a great while, not even of the very prizes, I set up my rest2 in giving up the King’s service to be ruined and so in to supper, where pretty merry, and after supper late to Mr. Glanville’s, and Sir G. Carteret to bed. I also to bed, it being very late.
- The tide of popular indignation ran high against Lord Sandwich, and he was sent to Spain as ambassador to get him honourably out of the way (see post, December 6th). ↩
- The phrase “set up my rest” is a metaphor from the once fashionable game of Primero, meaning, to stand upon the cards you have in your hand, in hopes they may prove better than those of your adversary. Hence, to make up your mind, to be determined (see Nares’s “Glossary”). ↩