Saturday 15 February 1667/68

Up betimes, and with Captain Cocke my coach to the Temple to his Counsel again about the prize goods in order to the drawing up of his answer to them, where little done but a confirmation that our best interest is for him to tell the whole truth, and so parted, and I home to the office, where all the morning, and at noon home to dinner, and after dinner all the afternoon and evening till midnight almost, and till I had tired my own backe, and my wife’s, and Deb.’s, in titleing of my books for the present year, and in setting them in order, which is now done to my very good satisfaction, though not altogether so completely as I think they were the last year, when my mind was more at leisure to mind it. So about midnight to bed, where my wife taking some physic overnight it wrought with her, and those coming upon her with great gripes, she was in mighty pain all night long, yet, God forgive me! I did find that I was most desirous to take my rest than to ease her, but there was nothing I could do to do her any good with.

13 Annotations

Terry Foreman   Link to this

John Evelyn's Diary

15th February, 1668. I saw the audience of the Swedish Ambassador Count Dohna [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christoph_Delphicu... ], in great state in the banqueting house.

http://is.gd/fY5wB

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Brodrick to Ormond
Written from: [London]
Date: 15 February 1668

"We [the House of Commons of England] have sat these two days very late, with more heat and animosity than could, reasonably, be expected, upon the miscarriages of the war. ... This day, the debate held from 10 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon." ... Upon one special question of censure upon the Government the Ayes he adds were 122; the Noes, 99.
_____

Ossory to Ormond
Written from: [London]
Date: 15 February 1668

Whatever may be said of the Duke's appointing the writer to be Deputy of Ireland, during the Duke's absence, he cannot but regard any possible disadvantage thence accruing as inferior to the dangers which might arise from the appointment of others. But it may be prudent to keep the design a secret for a time, as the Duke's movements are likely to quicken those of his enemies.

http://www.rsl.ox.ac.uk/dept/scwmss/projects/ca...

Robert Gertz   Link to this

Interesting comment on mores here...Sam can overlook his philandering as not that big a deal but is troubled by letting his exhaustion after what sounds like a long day prevent him from showing Bess a full measure of devotion in tonight's attack of illness. That to him is a real fault, the other...Something to avoid getting caught at for the embarassment to himself and humiliation to Bess but not, for the moment, a real concern. Perhaps because he regards all that as casual stuff, his heart not really involved?

Terry Foreman   Link to this

illness?

"those coming upon her with great gripes" don't indicate menses?

john   Link to this

"where my wife taking some physic overnight it wrought with her"

One would think that taking purgatives before bed not be desirable.

john   Link to this

"after dinner all the afternoon and evening till midnight almost, [...] in titleing of my books for the present year, and in setting them in order, which is now done to my very good satisfaction, "

Having spent the last hour setting my books in order in my office, I am glad that modern books are not the monsters of his day. (I am not so sure that my spouse would willingly help, though. #6-)

JWB   Link to this

"...but there was nothing I could do to do her any good with."

This morning, as the world turns, I read about 'great gripes' from pharma-chemists on remarks made by a Professor Mark Pepys, head of medicine at the Royal Free and University College Medical School in London: "We all agree that big pharma is useless at discovering new drugs..."
http://pipeline.corante.com/

Terry Foreman   Link to this

illness?

Maybe so, if read thus: "So about midnight to bed, where my wife some physic overnight it wrought with her, and those coming upon her with great gripes...."

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"those" referring to the paroxysms of the strong laxative.

nix   Link to this

I read it as a double discomfort: gastric distress from the purgative plus menstrual cramps. Poor woman!

Mary   Link to this

"those"

When Pepys uses this term, he is normally referring to Elizabeth's menses. The poor woman obviously suffers very bad cramps at times.

I wonder whether all our readers fully appreciate how very painful this condition can be. I once saw a work-colleague turn as white as a sheet and faint when hit by especially bad cramps. Not the normal state of affairs, but it can happen.

As Nix says, couple this with additional gripes from the working of the purgative and poor Elisabeth must have been having a truly miserable night. And not even a hot water bottle to ease things a bit.

Australian Susan   Link to this

The did have hot water bottles - but not the comforting ones I used to need! These were stoneware with a bung in the top. Also heated bricks wrapped in flannel were used. They would have had the technology for wheat packs - wonder if Bess ever had one of those? They also would have had access to that other great cramp reliever - brandy. But no anti prostoglandin pills, no paracetamol, no ibruprofen. Poor Bess!

Dawn   Link to this

"and those coming upon her with great gripes, she was in mighty pain all night long"
Could she have endometriosis?

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