Friday 2 March 1665/66

Up, as I have of late resolved before 7 in the morning and to the office, where all the morning, among other things setting my wife and Mercer with much pleasure to worke upon the ruling of some paper for the making of books for pursers, which will require a great deale of worke and they will earn a good deale of money by it, the hopes of which makes them worke mighty hard. At noon dined and to the office again, and about 4 o’clock took coach and to my Lord Treasurer’s and thence to Sir Philip Warwicke’s new house by appointment, there to spend an houre in talking and we were together above an hour, and very good discourse about the state of the King as to money, and particularly in the point of the Navy. He endeavours hard to come to a good understanding of Sir G. Carteret’s accounts, and by his discourse I find Sir G. Carteret must be brought to it, and what a madman he is that he do not do it of himself, for the King expects the Parliament will call upon him for his promise of giving an account of the money, and he will be ready for it, which cannot be, I am sure, without Sir G. Carteret’s accounts be better understood than they are. He seems to have a great esteem of me and my opinion and thoughts of things. After we had spent an houre thus discoursing and vexed that we do but grope so in the darke as we do, because the people, that should enlighten us, do not helpe us, we resolved fitting some things for another meeting, and so broke up. He shewed me his house, which is yet all unhung, but will be a very noble house indeed. Thence by coach calling at my bookseller’s and carried home 10l. worth of books, all, I hope, I shall buy a great while. There by appointment find Mr. Hill come to sup and take his last leave of me, and by and by in comes Mr. James Houbland to bear us company, a man I love mightily, and will not lose his acquaintance. He told me in my eare this night what he and his brothers have resolved to give me, which is 200l., for helping them out with two or three ships. A good sum and that which I did believe they would give me, and I did expect little less. Here we talked and very good company till late, and then took leave of one another, and indeed I am heartily sorry for Mr. Hill’s leaving us, for he is a very worthy gentleman, as most I know. God give him a good voyage and successe in his business. Thus we parted and my wife and I to bed, heavy for the losse of our friend.

19 Annotations

cape henry   Link to this

[RE: 3/2]"...we had spent an houre thus discoursing and vexed that we do but grope so in the darke as we do, because the people, that should enlighten us, do not helpe us..." Is there anyone reading this diary, who has held just about any sort of job, who has not uttered these very words? I find it simultaneously comforting and disheartening that Nothing! Changes!

cape henry   Link to this

[Re: 3/2] Having Elizabeth and Mercer make the pages for the pursers' ledgers is indeed a clever piece of nepotism, and I agree with TB about the birds and the stone.

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

"I find it simultaneously comforting and disheartening that Nothing! Changes!"

Heh ... indeed, CH. I will try to remember, next time I am similarly frustrated at the office, that Sam was dealing with the same kind of bureaucratic BS 300+ years ago, and that it's no doubt as old as "office jobs" are...

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

Where is Mr. Hill off to?

Paul Chapin   Link to this

I'm surprised that by this time nobody had figured out how to print pre-ruled paper. Michael Robinson, any thoughts?

Mary   Link to this

Mr. Hill departs.

As noted in 'our' encyclopedia, L&M state that Mr. Hill spent most of his working life in Lisbon as an agent for the Houblon brothers, so perhaps that is where he is going.

djc   Link to this

'I’m surprised that by this time nobody had figured out how to print pre-ruled paper'

I can remember when I worked in the printing industry in the 1970s ruled paper was not 'printed' by impression but ruled with a pen, albeit a mechanical one. A continuous roll of paper passed under a set of pens that inked lines and then cut into pages. For a complex account book the sheets would then be ruled a second time to produce columns, sometime in another colour.

GrahamT   Link to this

Mr Hill departs, alternative;

On 5th February, Pepys wrote:
"...there met Mr. Hill, newly come to town, and with him the Houblands, preparing for their ship’s and his going to Tangier..."
So maybe Tangier rather than Lisbon this time.

Mary   Link to this

Thanks, Graham T. That's the obvious answer in this case.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"L10 worth of books, all, I hope, I shall buy a [for] great while."

Presumably what one would write today. Is there an idiom change?

***
"There by appointment find Mr. Hill come to sup and take his last leave of me, and by and by in comes Mr. James Houbland to bear us company"

L&M remind us, this fulfills a meeting on 9 February about "Mr. Hill’s going for [ the Houblon brothers ] to Portugall" http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1666/02/09/

Lawrence   Link to this

Pepy's had a supper for Hill, and the five Houblons, on the 9th of February, as Hill is to go th Portugal on their behalf, so yes, mary you were right!!!

cgs   Link to this

"...with much pleasure to worke upon the ruling of some paper for the making of books for pursers..."

Printing lines is tough job, sounds easy 'till it tried.
It be about applying the correct pressure , because you can end up with strips of cut paper, not unlike a ninety pound lass pot-holing parquet floors with her 1/4 inch high heels.

Australian Susan   Link to this

Lines on paper

When Elgar was an impoverished composer and not yet recognised, his wife used to rule his music mss for him using five pens joined together in a grid, as they were too poor to purchase proper music mss paper.

PS so glad the Diary is now back to normal and we no longer appear to have 2 March 2nds Made me think I had entered an alternative universe.....

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

"heavy for the losse of our friend", Mr. Hill who is (per Feb.9 entry) going to Portugal

Brings to mind the great (probably 19th century) Irish song, "The Parting Glass."

http://www.thebards.net/music/lyrics/The_Partin...

Michael Robinosn   Link to this

"... how to print pre-ruled paper. "

Paul Have been thinking about this and I think CGS is right, its simply too difficult to achieve consistent results with letterpress. In SP's day and much later special or elaborate copies of printed volumes, particularly bibles and prayer books, had decorations of red rules round the text but these were always made by hand. Printed music paper really begins with the general introduction of lithography in the early C 19th. and, for what its worth, I can not recall any early examples of letterpress printed column or grid blank books -- grids with numbers where the additional type would distribute the weight of the press, yes; but blank no.

What my little bit of searching did throw up is that we are just at the beginning of the standard printed business form in the Navy; the earliest surviving printed receipt and payment order form for Navy Barber Surgeon's chests is circa 1653; a blank form for Master Gunner's to acknowledge receipt of supplies on ship board 1665; Dennis Gauden had printed up a ships victualing receipt/payment order form in June of 1668. The first surviving set of printed Navy Purser's instructions which I assume would include instructions about the form of accounts to be kept, if not a printed sample, dates from 1735.

Don McCahill   Link to this

More on ruled paper. It can be done on letterpress, although perhaps not as far back as SPs time. Any of you of a certain age will remember that newspapers onces had a rule printed between the columns of type, until about the 1960s. It had been done that way a full century before, and maybe longer.

Where the problem may occur is that it is somewhat difficult to make crossing lines with that method ... you have to mitre the ends of the lines. It would be very finicky to do something with so many crossed lines as account paper. Particulary when you have a ready supply of low-paid women willing to do it piecework for pin money.

cgs   Link to this

lines with type be easier, pressure be controlled and shared by the type :
A 300 lb man does a lot less damage to a parquet floor than a stiletto heeled 85 lb lass, it be tonnage per square inch, of course if the man wants to make his mark then wear heels that be only an 1/4 inch or less in diameter. 'Tis why a nail penetrates with the use of a pean balled hammer, the fist be not so good.

Michael Robinosn   Link to this

" ... setting my wife and Mercer with much pleasure to worke upon the ruling of some paper for the making of books for pursers, ..."

EP and Mercer might be using varnished templates to guide them in this work:

" ... to one Lovett’s, a varnisher, to see his manner of new varnish, but found not him at home, but his wife, a very beautiful woman, who shewed me much variety of admirable work, and is in order to my having of some papers fitted with his lines for my use for tables and the like."
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1665/05/05/

Robert Gertz   Link to this

This mean Hill gets off from that Valentine's Day present for Bess?

Heaven...

"Not bloody likely, sir." Bess, reading.

Log in to post an annotation.

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