Friday 12 October 1666

Up, and after taking leave of my poor father, who is setting out this day for Brampton by the Cambridge coach, he having taken a journey to see the city burned, and to bring my brother to towne, I out by water; and so coach to St. James’s, the weather being foul; and there, from Sir W. Coventry, do hear how the House have cut us off 150,000l. of our wear and tear, for that which was saved by the King while the fleete lay in harbour in winter. However, he seems pleased, and so am I, that they have abated no more, and do intend to allow of 28,000 men for the next year; and this day have appointed to declare the sum they will give the King,1 and to propose the way of raising it; so that this is likely to be the great day. This done in his chamber, I with him to Westminster Hall, and there took a few turns, the Hall mighty full of people, and the House likely to be very full to-day about the money business. Here I met with several people, and do find that people have a mighty mind to have a fling at the Vice-Chamberlain, if they could lay hold of anything, his place being, indeed, too much for such, they think, or any single subject of no greater parts and quality than he, to enjoy. But I hope he may weather all, though it will not be by any dexterity of his, I dare say, if he do stand, but by his fate only, and people’s being taken off by other things. Thence home by coach, mighty dirty weather, and then to the Treasurer’s office and got a ticket paid for my little Michell, and so again by coach to Westminster, and come presently after the House rose. So to the Swan, and there sent for a piece of meat and dined alone and played with Sarah, and so to the Hall a while, and thence to Mrs. Martin’s lodging and did what I would with her. She is very big, and resolves I must be godfather. Thence away by water with Cropp to Deptford. It was almost night before I got thither. So I did only give directions concerning a press that I have making there to hold my turning and joyner’s tooles that were lately given me, which will be very handsome, and so away back again, it being now dark, and so home, and there find my wife come home, and hath brought her new girle I have helped her to, of Mr. Falconbridge’s. She is wretched poor; and but ordinary favoured; and we fain to lay out seven or eight pounds worth of clothes upon her back, which, methinks, do go against my heart; and I do not think I can ever esteem her as I could have done another that had come fine and handsome; and which is more, her voice, for want of use, is so furred, that it do not at present please me; but her manner of singing is such, that I shall, I think, take great pleasure in it. Well, she is come, and I wish us good fortune in her. Here I met with notice of a meeting of the Commissioners for Tangier tomorrow, and so I must have my accounts ready for them, which caused me to confine myself to my chamber presently and set to the making up my accounts, which I find very clear, but with much difficulty by reason of my not doing them sooner, things being out of my mind.

  1. The parliament voted this day a supply of 1,800,000l. sterling. See below.

11 Annotations

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"to the Treasurer’s office and got a ticket paid for my little Michell"

L*M note last 21 June: "at supper comes young Michell, whose wife I love, little Betty Howlet, to get my favour about a ticket, and I am glad of this occasion of obliging him and give occasion of his coming to me, for I must be better acquainted with him and her" http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1666/06/21/

"Little Mitchell" I take to be Michael Mitchell, a tavern-keeper who cashed pay-tickets and I gather is now to be reimbursed.

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

"and so to the Hall a while, and thence to Mrs. Martin’s lodging and did what I would with her. She is very big, and resolves I must be godfather"

Well, Sam *did* make her an offer she couldn't refuse...

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"She is very big, and resolves I must be godfather." Gee, I'd love to be there when he explains this one to Bess... Not so much him trying to explain why the pleasant large lady who sells him the occasional linen good wants the famed Mr. P as her child's godfather but the nervousness that would slip out as he watches Bess' reaction.

Michael Robinson   Link to this

"She is very big, and resolves I must be godfather."

Not for the first time:

"So by and by Mrs. Lane comes and plucks me by the cloak to speak to me, and I was fain to go to her shop, and pretending to buy some bands made her go home, and by and by followed her, and there did what I would with her, and so after many discourses and her intreating me to do something for her husband, which I promised to do, and buying a little band of her, which I intend to keep to, I took leave, there coming a couple of footboys to her with a coach to fetch her abroad I know not to whom. She is great with child, and she says I must be godfather, but I do not intend it."
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1664/12/06/

Michael Robinson   Link to this

" ... and this day have appointed to declare the sum they will give the King, and to propose the way of raising it; ..."

Despite " .. their reckonings are very good, and show great faults, ... So what is become of all this sum? 2,390,000" !
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1666/10/10/

Australian Susan   Link to this

"...do find that people have a mighty mind to have a fling at the Vice-Chamberlain, if they could lay hold of anything, his place being, indeed, too much for such, they think, or any single subject of no greater parts and quality than he, to enjoy. But I hope he may weather all, though it will not be by any dexterity of his, I dare say, if he do stand, but by his fate only, and people’s being taken off by other things. ..."

A week is a long time in politics!

Mary   Link to this

"her voice ..... is so furred"

What a good way of describing an out-of-practice singing voice. Miss Barker will have to work assiduously to improve her sound.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"She is wretched poor; and but ordinary favoured; and we fain to lay out seven or eight pounds worth of clothes upon her back, which, methinks, do go against my heart; and I do not think I can ever esteem her as I could have done another that had come fine and handsome; and which is more, her voice, for want of use, is so furred, that it do not at present please me; but her manner of singing is such, that I shall, I think, take great pleasure in it. Well, she is come, and I wish us good fortune in her."

Not only must one pay for everything, she's not cute enough to warrant the expense. Probably about as safe as a young girl with no connections to protect her can be at the hands of Samuel Pepys.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"I must be godfather.”

What obligations might this entail for Pepys? Will a male child be named Samuel?

Australian Susan   Link to this

The Godparenting bit

I think Sam is worried he will be pressed to advance the child in a career, but i would have thought his main concern is, as RG pointed out - What Will Bess Think???

Bradford   Link to this

Won't he have to give silver spoons, or a christening cup? The pain of spending money with no return!

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