Wednesday 29 May 1667

Up, and by coach to St. James’s, where by and by up to the Duke of York, where, among other things, our parson Mills having the offer of another benefice by Sir Robert Brookes, who was his pupil, he by my Lord Barkeley [of Stratton] is made one of the Duke’s Chaplains, which qualifies him for two livings. But to see how slightly such things are done, the Duke of York only taking my Lord Barkeley’s word upon saying, that we the officers of the Navy do say he is a good man and minister of our parish, and the Duke of York admits him to kiss his hand, but speaks not one word to him; but so a warrant will be drawn from the Duke of York to qualify him, and there’s an end of it. So we into the Duke’s closett, where little to do, but complaint for want of money and a motion of Sir W. Coventry’s that we should all now bethink ourselves of lessening charge to the King, which he said was the only way he saw likely to put the King out of debt, and this puts me upon thinking to offer something presently myself to prevent its being done in a worse manner without me relating to the Victualling business, which, as I may order it, I think may be done and save myself something. Thence home, and there settle to some accounts of mine in my chamber I all the morning till dinner. My wife comes home from Woolwich, but did not dine with me, going to dress herself against night, to go to Mrs. Pierce’s to be merry, where we are to have Knepp and Harris and other good people. I at my accounts all the afternoon, being a little lost in them as to reckoning interest. Anon comes down my wife, dressed in her second mourning, with her black moyre waistcoat, and short petticoat, laced with silver lace so basely that I could not endure to see her, and with laced lining, which is too soon, so that I was horrid angry, and went out of doors to the office and there staid, and would not go to our intended meeting, which vexed me to the blood, and my wife sent twice or thrice to me, to direct her any way to dress her, but to put on her cloth gown, which she would not venture, which made me mad: and so in the evening to my chamber, vexed, and to my accounts, which I ended to my great content, and did make amends for the loss of our mirth this night, by getting this done, which otherwise I fear I should not have done a good while else. So to bed.

7 Annotations

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Awww, Sam...Did the petulant widdle child win his point? How heartbreaking for Bess to have to lose a night of watching you flirt with Pierce and God knows what else with Knipp and any other available femaie.

Nicely done, Bess.

Mary  •  Link

It was only a couple of weeks ago (12th May) that Elizabeth struck a bargain with Sam on this question of lace and second mourning. She agreed that she would 'no more wear white locks' in his sight if she could have the money to 'lace her gown for second mourning.' Sam agreed to give her the money after further high words had been exchanged about Sam's fondness for Knipp's company and his undertaking not to see the actress any more.

No wonder Elizabeth has spent so long in preparing for this evening at Mrs. Pierce's (in company with Knipp and Harris and 'other good people'), wearing her new lace and all - and perhaps herein lies part of the reason for Sam's 'horrid' anger. He's been reminded about the bargain that was struck over the purchase of the lace and feels affronted by his wife's 'flaunting' of the evidence of her successful negotiation on that point. Though he's not admitting that, of course.

Andrew Hamilton  •  Link

Mary, a palpable hit, I think

JWB  •  Link

Nietzsche tragedy of human condition?
-bean counting:bean shooting::Apollo:Dionysus-
or in more modern vain, are we to see Pepys's personality more integrated and his resort to accounting as resort to an instrument of rhetoric, used to control politics of office just as he seeks to control his wife?

L. K. van Marjenhoff  •  Link

In the City of Westminster's blog of Nathaniel Bryceson's diary, which they call "The Life and Loves of a Victorian Clerk," Bryceson wrote on this day in 1846 that "Chelsea pensioners each wore an oak apple in commemoration" of the Restoration of Charles II.

An oak apple?

Michael Robinson  •  Link

An oak apple is a mutation of an oak leaf caused by chemicals injected by the larva of certain kinds of gall wasp. They are so called because the gall, which can measure up to 5 cm in diameter but is normally only approximately 2 cm, somewhat resembles an apple.

classicist  •  Link

The oak association is, of course, from the famous occasion on which Charles hid up an oak tree to escape Parliamentary soldiers after the Battle of Worcester. The incident was so famous that the 'Royal Oak' in question, at Boscobel House near Wolverhampton, was killed by souvenir hunters lopping off its branches after the Restoration. A 'Son of Royal Oak' is currently expiring at the property, which is open to the public, and a'Grandson of Royal Oak' is in line to inherit. (You can buy a certified royal oak sapling at the shop if you feel so inclined.) All the 'Royal Oak' pubs take their name from this.

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