Tuesday 9 April 1667

Up. and to the office a while, none of my fellow officers coming to sit, it being holiday, and so towards noon I to the Exchange, and there do hear mighty cries for peace, and that otherwise we shall be undone; and yet I do suspect the badness of the peace we shall make. Several do complain of abundance of land flung up by tenants out of their hands for want of ability to pay their rents; and by name, that the Duke of Buckingham hath 6000l. so flung up. And my father writes, that Jasper Trice, upon this pretence of his tenants’ dealing with him, is broke up housekeeping, and gone to board with his brother, Naylor, at Offord; which is very sad. So home to dinner, and after dinner I took coach and to the King’s house, and by and by comes after me my wife with W. Hewer and his mother and Barker, and there we saw “The Tameing of a Shrew,” which hath some very good pieces in it, but generally is but a mean play; and the best part, “Sawny,” done by Lacy, hath not half its life, by reason of the words, I suppose, not being understood, at least by me. After the play was done, as I come so I went away alone, and had a mind to have taken out Knipp to have taken the ayre with her, and to that end sent a porter in to her that she should take a coach and come to me to the Piatza in Covent Garden, where I waited for her, but was doubtful I might have done ill in doing it if we should be visti ensemble, sed elle was gone out, and so I was eased of my care, and therefore away to Westminster to the Swan, and there did baiser la little missa … and drank, and then by water to the Old Swan, and there found Betty Michell sitting at the door, it being darkish. I staid and talked a little with her, but no once baiser la, though she was to my thinking at this time une de plus pretty mohers that ever I did voir in my vida, and God forgive me my mind did run sobre elle all the vespre and night and la day suivante. So home and to the office a little, and then to Sir W. Batten’s, where he tells me how he hath found his lady’s jewels again, which have been so long lost, and a servant imprisoned and arraigned, and they were in her closet under a china cup, where he hath servants will swear they did look in searching the house; but Mrs. Turner and I, and others, do believe that they were only disposed of by my Lady, in case she had died, to some friends of hers, and now laid there again. So home to supper, and to read the book I bought yesterday of the Turkish policy, which is a good book, well writ, and so owned by Dr. Clerke yesterday to me, commending it mightily to me for my reading as the only book of the subject that ever was writ, yet so designedly. So to bed.

15 Annotations

Terry Foreman   Link to this

[A News-Letter, addressed to Sir George Lane]
Written from: [Whitehall]
Date: 9 April 1667

The death of the Marquess of Worcester; of the Earl of Cleveland; and of the late Governor of Scilly, Sir Francis Godolphin [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Godolphin_... ], are mentioned.

A ship, with a cargo stated to be worth £20,000, has reached Bristol from Virginia; and reports the safe arrival in America of the late Virginia Fleet.

On the coming occasion, the King intends to hold the Feast of St George at Whitehall, instead of Windsor.

Some foreign advices, political and naval, are added.

http://www.bodley.ox.ac.uk/dept/scwmss/projects...

Terry Foreman   Link to this

“…. After the play was done, as I came, so I went away alone; and had a mind to have taken out Knepp to have taken the ayre with her, and so to that end sent a porter in to her that she should take a coach and come to me to the piatza in Covent-garden; where I waited for her, but was doubtful I might have done ill in doing it if we should be visto ensemble; sed ella was gone out, and so I was eased of that care; and therefore away to Westminster to the Swan, and there did bezar la little mosa and hazer tocar mi thing through mi chemise con su mano, at which she was enojado; but I did donar ella algo, and so all well and drank; and then by water to the Old Swan and there found Betty Michell sitting at the door; it being darkish, I stayed and talked a little with her, but no osais bezar la, though she was to my thinking at this time una de las plus pretty mohers that ever I did ver in my vida. And God forgive me, my mind did run sobra ella all the vespre and night and la day suivante.

http://www.pepys.info/bits5.html

God forgive him.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"it being holiday"

L&M note it was the first day of the Easter law term.

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

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Oddly enough "The Taming of the Shrew" is currently playing at our excellent Atlanta Shakespeare Tavern. I could see Sam as Petruchio. Pity Sam can't get to see the proper Shakespearian version.

"I lived the proper Shakespearian version." Bess sighs.

Margaret   Link to this

"...a servant imprisoned and arraigned..."

I'm concerned about the servant. Even if he/she is speedily released, that must have been a horrible experience.

language hat   Link to this

"no osais bezar la" = "I didn't dare kiss her."

"she was enojado; but I did donar ella algo" = "she was angry, but I gave her something."

Sam, Sam, Sam...

Michael McCollough   Link to this

I never get tired of Sam's reviews of Shakespeare plays: it's the only place (not excluding my own head) that I can get an opinion uncolored by Shakespeare's current reputation. And you know, he's right: 'Taming of the Shrew' isn't all that great a play.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

For me it's fun but I doubt anyone considers "Shrew" one of his best. They just like to speculate it's about poor Anne Hathaway and "find the roots of the great plays" there. But the thing is, it's probably not really Shakespeare's play Sam is seeing...There were several "Taming of A Shrew"s at least one of which Will had as usual stolen from himself and at best this is John Lacy's adaptation of one, possibly Will's "...The Shrew".

Sam seems to actually follow convention pretty closely by respecting, even loving, the big tragedies. Pity he never seems to have seen Lear.

Jesse   Link to this

"...by reason of the words, I suppose, not being understood, at least by me"

Hold on, is it enunciation, Shakespeare or what? If it was an adaptation then wouldn't the words be more easily understood"? (Certainly Lacy not being one to accuse.)

Linda   Link to this

The primary title of this play is "Sawney the Scot," and it is subtitled "The Taming of the Shrew" because it is based on Shakespeare's play. The words that Sam can't understand may be in some Scottish dialect. There was apparently a notorious real-life Scot named Sawney Bean around that time.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"Several do complain of abundance of land flung up by tenants out of their hands for want of ability to pay their rents.... And my father writes, that Jasper Trice, upon this pretence of his tenants’ dealing with him, is broke up housekeeping, and gone to board with his brother, Naylor, at Offord; which is very sad. "

L&M note "Corn prices had been low since 1663, and the 'decay of rents' a matter of national concern around 1667-70." and reference Clarendon, *Life* "However thefe Pretences, together with the fudden bringing up all the Money, that was collected for the King, in Specie to London, which proceeded from the Bankers advancing fo much prefent Money for the emergent Occafions, for which They had thofe Aflignments upon the Money of the Country, did really produce fuch a fudden Fall of the Rents throughout the Kingdom, as had never been known before : So thatMen were compelled to abate generally a fourth Part*/Zo of their annual Rents at the leaft, or to take their Lands into their own Hands, for which They were as ill provided. All this Mifchief fell upon the Nobility and greateft Gentry, who were Owners of the greateft Eftates, every Body whofe Eftate lay in Land undergoing a Share in the Suffering, which made the Difcontent general; which They thought the beft Way to remedy would be to raife no more Taxes, which They took to be the Caule why the Rents fell. In the mean Time the Expenfes of the Court, and of all who depended upon it, grew ftill higher, and the King himlelf lefs intent upon his Bufinefs, and more loved his Pleafures, to which He prefcribed no Limits, nor to the Expenfes which could not but accompany them." http://bit.ly/9QK1Iq

Mary   Link to this

The notorious Sawney Bean
(if, indeed, he ever existed) is supposed to have pursued a life of brigandage, incest and cannibalism in Ayreshire during the 16th century.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Sawney Bean has drawn some other attention. "While historians tend to believe that Sawney Bean never existed, his story has passed into legend and is part of the Edinburgh tourism industry."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sawney_Bean

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Sawney Bean...Great name, sounds like Sweeney Todd's crazier cousin.

Michael McCollough   Link to this

Robert,
I don't mean to harp on this but I didn't mean 'Shrew' wasn't a good Shakespeare play- I meant it wasn't a good play period; If The Bard didn't have those other works to his credit I doubt anyone would have heard of it.

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