Thursday 11 March 1668/69

Up, and to Sir W. Coventry, to the Tower, where I walked and talked with him an hour alone, from one good thing to another: who tells me that he hears that the Commission is gone down to the King, with a blank to fill, for his place in the Treasury: and he believes it will be filled with one of our Treasurers of the Navy, but which he knows not, but he believes it will be Osborne. We walked down to the Stone Walk, which is called, it seems, my Lord of Northumberland’s walk, being paved by some one of that title, that was prisoner there: and at the end of it, there is a piece of iron upon the wall, with, his armes upon it, and holes to put in a peg, for every turn that they make upon that walk. So away to the Office, where busy all the morning, and so to dinner, and so very busy all the afternoon, at my Office, late; and then home tired, to supper, with content with my wife, and so to bed, she pleasing me, though I dare not own it, that she hath hired a chambermaid; but she, after many commendations, told me that she had one great fault, and that was, that she was very handsome, at which I made nothing, but let her go on; but many times to-night she took occasion to discourse of her handsomeness, and the danger she was in by taking her, and that she did doubt yet whether it would be fit for her, to take her. But I did assure her of my resolutions to have nothing to do with her maids, but in myself I was glad to have the content to have a handsome one to look on.

6 Annotations

Terry Foreman  •  Link

The Royal Society today at Arundel House — from the Hooke Folio Online

Mar. 11. (about Expts. of motion. &c -- the Curator orderd to take care they be done next Day. New microscope to be new [ contriued.) Item that the Curator should bring in his new contriuance for a Watch sayd to moue by a Ballance toucht with a Magnett as also that he should not forget the Expt. of falling Mercury in a glasse cane. --

mr. Hooke affirmed to haue examind some froggs, and found in them a Seminall and excrementall Vent. He also lookd vpon the black round Spawn of froggs by a Microscope & thought he Saw a whitish tegument round about the blackish Substance, and was of opinion that that was like the white of an Egge, as he ghessed the black matter within to be instead of the yolk. he vndertook to obserue the progresse of froggspawn from time to time

The President moued that since there was soe great a necessity of having more curators then one the society would Recomend it to the Councell to consider of it as a thing of soe great concernment to the Society advancement of their institution, and it was accordingly referred to the Councell.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"he hears that the Commission is gone down to the King, with a blank to fill, for his place in the Treasury:"

L&M note Coventry's place was not in fact filled: a new commission was issued on 20 March which simply omitted his name.

Tony Eldridge  •  Link

but many times to-night she took occasion to discourse of her handsomeness

Can't help feeling that she's winding you up, Sam.
What's the betting that she turns out to be a homely biddy with a slight squint?

Australian Susan  •  Link

That last sentence made me laugh out loud. Sam is incorrigible! And little snippets like that prove, once again, there is nothing like this in extant English literature. This whole entry typifies the Diary at its best - it combines domestic detail, matrimonial discourse, sly comment, Sam's interest in oddities, and his keeping his finger on the pulse of the body politic, always with a eye to the main chance for the Navy and of course any Court gossip going.

Tom Carr  •  Link

Susan, I just read that passage out to the office and we all got a good laugh!

Andrew Hamilton  •  Link

Susan, I would add to your list his eye for the comely lass.

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