Sunday 26 May 1667

(Lord’s day). Up sooner than usual on Sundays, and to walk, it being exceeding hot all night (so as this night I begun to leave off my waistcoat this year) and this morning, and so to walk in the garden till toward church time, when my wife and I to church, where several strangers of good condition come to our pew, where the pew was full. At noon dined at home, where little Michell come and his wife, who continues mighty pretty. After dinner I by water alone to Westminster, where, not finding Mrs. Martin within, did go towards the parish church, and in the way did overtake her, who resolved to go into the church with her that she was going with (Mrs. Hargrave, the little crooked woman, the vintner’s wife of the Dog) and then go out again, and so I to the church, and seeing her return did go out again myself, but met with Mr. Howlett, who, offering me a pew in the gallery, I had no excuse but up with him I must go, and then much against my will staid out the whole church in pain while she expected me at home, but I did entertain myself with my perspective glass up and down the church, by which I had the great pleasure of seeing and gazing at a great many very fine women; and what with that, and sleeping, I passed away the time till sermon was done, and then to Mrs. Martin, and there staid with her an hour or two, and there did what I would with her, —[Pepy’s usual after Services activities. D.W.]— and after been here so long I away to my boat, and up with it as far as Barne Elmes, reading of Mr. Evelyn’s late new book against Solitude, in which I do not find much excess of good matter, though it be pretty for a bye discourse. I walked the length of the Elmes, and with great pleasure saw some gallant ladies and people come with their bottles, and basket, and chairs, and form, to sup under the trees, by the waterside, which was mighty pleasant. I to boat again and to my book, and having done that I took another book, Mr. Boyle’s of Colours, and there read, where I laughed, finding many fine things worthy observation, and so landed at the Old Swan, and so home, where I find my poor father newly come out of an unexpected fit of his pain, that they feared he would have died. They had sent for me to White Hall and all up and down, and for Mr. Holliard also, who did come, but W. Hewer being here did I think do the business in getting my father’s bowel, that was fallen down, into his body again, and that which made me more sensible of it was that he this morning did show me the place where his bowel did use to fall down and swell, which did trouble me to see. But above all things the poor man’s patience under it, and his good heart and humour, as soon as he was out of it, did so work upon me, that my heart was sad to think upon his condition, but do hope that a way will be found by a steel truss to relieve him. By and by to supper, all our discourse about Brampton, and my intentions to build there if I could be free of my engagement to my Uncle Thomas and his son, that they may not have what I have built, against my will, to them whether I will or no, in case of me and my brothers being without heirs male; which is the true reason why I am against laying out money upon that place, together with my fear of some inconvenience by being so near Hinchingbroke; being obliged to be a servant to that family, and subject to what expence they shall cost me; and to have all that I shall buy, or do, esteemed as got by the death of my uncle, when indeed what I have from him is not worth naming. After supper to read and then to bed.

17 Annotations

Margaret   Link to this

"... I think do the business in getting my father’s bowel, that was fallen down, into his body again, and that which made me more sensible of it was that he this morning did show me the place where his bowel did use to fall down and swell..."

Can anyone explain this? It sounds gruesome!

Adrianne   Link to this

Margaret -- just read this to my husband (a surgeon), and he said it *could* be a hernia from the description, but sounds more like a rectal prolapse.

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Kudos to the heroic Will Hewer...Above and beyond the clerical call, Will. Poor Bess, what a day this must have been. But above all, God bless poor John Sr...

"Any word of Mr. P, Mrs. P?"

"Nothing yet from Whitehall, Will. Father-in-law?!! Are you feeling any better?!!"

"For God's sakes, woman! Do you not see it's me bowels hanging out not my ears stopped up? Argghh..."

"All right, father-in-law!!! I'll see if there's any word of Mr. Pepys!!! I'll be right back!!!"

Lord...Jesus...

"And hold on to that bowel, William."

"Right, Mrs. P."

"A fine man, your son, sir."

"Oh, God in Heaven!!!"

"Sorry, sir. Didn't mean to move like that."

Meg, darling...Take me now.

"Sir? If I were to push it all back in...Perhaps that would be the best thing."

"What?"

"I said, sir!!" Call through cupped hands. "If I...!! Ow!!, sir..."

"Blessed Jesu, take me now!"

"Father-in-law!!! Tom is back but says he could not find Mr. Pepys!!! But the surgeon is coming, soon as they find him!!! Are you any better, now?!!!"

"Jesu Christ, girl!! Do I look better with more of me bowel in the lad's hands? Merciful God, one of you take pity and kill me now! All right, lad...Go ahead..."

"Sir?"

"Anything, anything...Go ahead and stuff them back in. If nothing else it'll kill me."

Ummn...

This sounds like an unwise career move for sure...

"Oh, my. Shall we pray first, father-in-law?!!!"

AHHHHH!!!

"Perhaps not...Go ahead, Will!"

"What? Do you mean to watch, girl?"

"I just thought it might be something Sam'l would like to know all about, father-in-law!!! Useful if they have to open him up again, you know?!!!"

"Looorrddd!!!...Just do it, boy!"

"Oh...Mrs. P!"

"Jane! Help me grab...That!"

"All right, ladies...One, two...Three!"

AHHHHHHH!!!!

Hmmn...

"Father-in-law?!!! Are you dead?!!!"

"Oh..." Eyes open. "No, actually, girl. I rather feel better."

"Well done, Will...Thank ye, Jane. Mr. Pepys will be so pleased. Lets get old Mr. Pepys to the bed. Careful, now...There we go."

"You're a good girl, daughter." kindly pat. Careful eyeing...Definitely feeling better, yes. Somewhat less kindly and more...(Well, it has to come from somewhere and we can be pretty sure it wasn't from Meg.) pat. "Where is the damned lad, anyway?"

"We don't know yet, father-in-law!!!"

Ted Serrill   Link to this

I have been perusing the diary since day one. Eventally, it occurred to me I do not remember Sam ever referring to his wife by name. Have I missed an early annotated explanation? Am I wrong? Checking on Bess (Besse)and Elizabeth in the diary bring up references to other people.

Todd Bernhardt   Link to this

Great entry! Love the scene in the church ("and what with that, and sleeping, I passed away the time..."), and his explanation of his attitude toward building at Brampton is very enlightening about his relationship both with his uncle/cousin and "my lord."

JWB   Link to this

"...with their bottles, and basket, and chairs, and form, to sup under the trees, by the waterside..."

Is 'form' above verb or noun;&, if noun what is it?

Bradford   Link to this

Ted: You are quite right that Samuel never refers to Elizabeth by name, and somewhere in the vast Annotations there is a cogent discussion by all hands about how this does or does not conform to modern-day practice---a lot of people will speak of their spouses as "my wife" or "my husband" to folks they don't know that well. Surely one of our intrepid researchers can dig up that exchange?

JWB: "form" is a noun---6B, "a long seat: bench," says Merriam-Webster. Used, I believe in the UK at any rate, down into the 19th century.

Chris in Toronto   Link to this

In my days at an English grammar school in the 1960's, a "form" was a long bench used in the gym for various exercises as well as seating.

JWB   Link to this

Bradford & Chris:
Thanks. I should have looked further. Image in my mind's eye went from La Grande Jatte to Grant at Massapomax Church.

James in Liverpool   Link to this

A lurker writes: And in my days at an English Prep School in the 60's 'class' and 'form' were used synonymously - a form room being presumably named after its furniture.

(Been here since the beginning, and it feels like home - thanks everyone)

Robert Gertz   Link to this

"...my fear of some inconvenience by being so near Hinchingbroke; being obliged to be a servant to that family, and subject to what expence they shall cost me;..."

Probably the most open Sam has been about his chaffing at being more servant than relation to the Montagus. Both the irritation of being taken with them as less than a free, successful, and even important man and the practical concern of the improvident Lord and his minions like Moore wanting "loans" to plug the family budget gaps.

Joe Connell   Link to this

Here in the UK a form is a bench without a back support.

cum salis grano   Link to this

A line will form
for the forth form
sit lads on the form
and be informed
not be misinformed

Eric Walla   Link to this

So is this manner of schooling considered formal or informal? And if they were again to take up the practice of employing benches, would that be a reform school?

(Sorry, so little time, so many "-form-" roots to play with ...)

Ted Serrill   Link to this

Thanks, Bradford.

A. De Araujo   Link to this

"in getting my father's bowel that was fallen down"
Clearly an inguinal hernia thence the truss;rectal prolapse used to be found in older women that had had several births.

Teresa@Holme   Link to this

" I walked the length of the Elmes, and with great pleasure saw some gallant ladies and people come with their bottles, and basket, and chairs, and form, to sup under the trees, by the waterside, which was mighty pleasant."

A picnic... With great pleasure...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_dejeuner_sur_l'...

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