January 1668

Sam works on his Tangier Accounts (13, 20, 27) and his letter to the Commissioners of Acts, who call him before their Committee (27, 28, 31). Regarding the Chatham business, Sam hears he made “great ground in the Parliament” and that they will “never let me be out of employment” (5). While the Parliament takes things seriously, the King with his assorted actress mistresses (14), and the Duke of Buckingham with his infamous Lord Shrewsbury duel, leave Sam disgusted. “This will make the world think that the King hath good councilors about him, when the Duke of Buckingham, the greatest man about him, is a fellow of no more sobriety than to fight about a whore” (17).

Sam is at odds with Elizabeth when Will Hewer gives her a 40l. diamond locket, which Sam tells her she can not accept. Sam concludes that Pall will marry Jackson (10, 11), but when Sam suggests that his father comes to live with them after they wed, Elizabeth and Sam have a heated argument (12). Lord Hinchingbrooke is finally married, leaving Sam snubbed that he did not have a favour sent to him (17). On a sad family note, Anthony Joyce attempts suicide and dies shortly thereafter, leaving Kate Joyce and family at risk of losing their home to the Crown. Sam gets the approval of the King that the house will pass to the widow and children, but by month end this is still in flux (21, 22, 24, 30).

See the full diary entries for January 1668

February 1668

Sam’s worries include “finishing my Tangier Accounts; of auditing my last year’s Accounts; of preparing answers to the Commissioners of Accounts; of drawing up several important letters to the Duke of York and the Commissioners of the Treasury; the marrying of my sister; the building of a coach and stables against summer, and the setting many things in the Office right; and the drawing up a new form of Contract with the Victualler of the Navy, and several other things, which pains, however, will go through with, among others the taking care of Kate Joyce in that now she is in at present for saving her estate.” (1).

Sam prepares for and presents to several Committees. The ticket issues are voted miscarriages, but no individual is named, thus leaving Sam unsure if he will lose his position (14, 18, 19, 23, 28). Sam is summoned to present on the prize issues and worries regarding how Lord Sandwich will fare on this matter (5, 11, 12, 25, 29). In Sandwich’s favor, he is credited with achieving peace between Portugal and Spain (10, 19). A lucky Duke of Buckingham and Lord Shrewsbury are pardoned for their duel (5, 6).

Sam picks Mercer and Elizabeth for his Valentines and buys Elizabeth a turquoise ring to add to her “collection” (14, 18, 23). He meets Pall’s intended husband, the quiet Jackson, “a plain young man, handsome enough for Pall, one of no education nor discourse” who passes muster (7) and Sam concludes the marriage settlement details by month end (10, 12, 29). He is relieved when the jury finds the cause of death for Anthony Joyce to be “fever”; therefore Kate Joyce keeps her estate (4, 18).

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March 1668

Fearful that all of his office will be turned out, a highly stressed Sam prepares his defence of the business of the tickets (1, 2, 4). With encouragement from Elizabeth, a half-pint of warm sack and a dram of brandy, Sam faces the House and delivers the speech of a lifetime (5). His speech and his abilities become the talk of the town, with accolades coming from all over, including the King (5, 6, 8,9). Nevertheless, Sam’s worries continue with ongoing issues related to the prizes and a summons relating to the victuals (6, 31).

Sister Pall is finally married at Brampton (2). Sam meets the new Lady Hinchingbrooke and is pleasantly impressed (14). Sam intercedes when he receives an unsigned letter telling him that Kate Joyce is contemplating an unfavorable marriage. At Easter she asks Sam if he will look into a potential partner that she might be contemplating before she chooses to wed (22).

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April 1668

Sam develops a sexual interest in Deb (1, 2) who luckily departs for a country visit with Elizabeth and Jane (2). While the ladies are away Sam turns his attentions elsewhere and, with no fear of Elizabeth’s wrath, gets bold with Mrs. Knepp (21, 23). In other theatre-related news, Sir W. Davenant passes away and has a fine burial (6, 9).

Sam remains unscathed by the various Committee investigations but Harman is committed by Parliament (18), Sir W, Penn is impeached (21), and Henry Brouncker flees the country (20, 29). Sam’s worries about Lord Sandwich continue (27, 28). The Parliament still has not passed the much needed Act for 300,000l.. A small and lame fleete departs (3, 7, 30) and Balty returns home safe and sound (9, 17, 26).

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May 1668

Sam enjoys a small reprieve from the Parliamentary stresses, but Sir W. Penn must answer to his impeachment charges (1). Sir Thomas Teddeman becomes ill and passes away with a well attended burial (3, 13, 15).

With Elizabeth away, Sam enjoys dalliances with Mrs. Knepp (6, 7, 16) and shares music and plays with Mercer and her friends (10, 11, 12, 14, 17, 18, 26, 28, 29).Mrs. Martin’s daughter, Sam’s godchild, dies (5) and Mrs. Martin gives Sam her coveted starling, which was formerly the King’s bird (21, 22). Sam is perturbed to hear that his cousin Kate Joyce has remarried, although Sam was lax to inquire about the suitability and finances of her potential partner (11).

Sam heads off to Brampton for a short visit and spends time with his family and Lady Sandwich (23, 24, 25), only to return to his usual Tangier accounts and Council Chamber duties (28, 29).

See the full diary entries for May 1668

June 1668

Sam departs for a little adventure, and leaves for Brampton to get the ladies and Will Hewer (4). His father tells Sam of Elizabeth’s ill words (8), but the next day, the happy group of four leaves for a tour of Oxford, Salisbury, Bath, Wells and the county of Wiltshire (9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16).

Upon their return home Elizabeth sobs non-stop as Sam discovers that she has heard of his gadabout ways during her time away (18). The crying continues and Elizabeth requests that she be allowed to leave and go live in France. As her heartache unfolds, Elizabeth feels that Sam has a lot more pleasures than he allows her to have (19), and she is still distressed from the words that she shared with Sam’s father.

The household is awakened by a fire in Mark Lane. Sam secures his gold, plate and papers, but all is safe (19). He presents Balty to Mr. Wren to ensure his position as a Muster-Master (22).

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July 1668

Sam attends the Duke of York, who is “very hot for regulations of the Navy” (1) and he continues with his different groups of Commissioners (2, 3, 22).

Elizabeth sits for her portrait by the artist Coopers (8, 10, 13, 16, 18, 25). Betty Mitchell gives birth to a daughter, with Elizabeth the god mother (12). Sam buys an espinette, a small harpsichord (13, 15). Sam tries several different treatments for his steadily declining eyes, with limited success (3, 13, 15, 21, 23, 29). “The month ends mighty sadly with me, my eyes being now past all use almost; and I am mighty hot upon trying the later printed experiment of paper tubes” (31).

See the full diary entries for July 1668

August 1668

Sam’s deteriorating eyes make his office work more difficult. After a trial “of a tube-spectacall of paper” (11) he sets the women out to make him more tubes (12) with hopes that this may bring relief.

Sore eyes aside, Sam prepares his “great letter” for the Duke of York, which details the poor administration of Naval Office. Sam drafts the letter and reviews it with the Duke of York. The Duke has it re-written, signs it and presents it as if it he wrote it himself. Sam cleverly removes himself from any public link to the letter, but fears that the offices suspect him of writing it (21, 22, 23, 25, 27, 29, 30). The Duke requests that the Naval Officers reply to the report with their recommendations for improvement. As this is going on, Sam hears rumors that the entire Naval Office will be turned out. Some of those conversations, with Captain Cocke and the Duke of York, exempt Sam from the group expected to lose their positions, but Sam still fears that they will all be let go (22, 23, 30).

In romantic news, Creed speeds his match with Mrs. Betty Pickering (13). Sam’s house is in disarray as Tom, who has made a marriage proposal to Jane and backed out, leaves a distraught Jane in agony (19).

See the full diary entries for August 1668

September 1668

The ladies set out to visit Sam’s cousin Roger Pepys in Cambridge, to see the Stourbridge Fair (15), leaving Sam to deal with the fallout of the Duke’s recent letter. Mr. Wren tells Sam that “they all suspect” him of authoring the letter (8). The Officers send their defences to the Duke, who shares these with Sam in order to allow him to adjust his own defence to address any potential issues that are thrown his way by the other Officers (11, 13, 16, 18). The atmosphere at work has everyone being “mighty cautious” (17).

Sam hears that Lord Sandwich is in Cornwall, and Sam feels badly that he has not done more to assist in the management of his affairs (27, 28).

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October 1668

Naval roles change. Sam secures a position for Mr. Turner as the Storekeeper (11, 13, 15). All Naval Officers are ordered to deliver their patents to the Commissioners of Acts (22) and Sir J. Mennes is made a bare Commissioner (24). An order from the King, which Lord Anglesey plans to refute, asks that Anglesey be suspended and replaced by Sir Thomas Littleton and Sir Thomas Osbourne (28, 31). Lord Sandwich is welcomed back kindly by the King, but his estate and debts are in dismal condition (17).

Sam starts a shopping adventure with a new periwig (22), plans for a new bed (19, 22) and a new coach (20, 24, 30). he may well need a new place to sleep after Elizabeth finds him in a sexually indecent embrace with Deb (25). As Elizabeth’s hurt and rage unfold (26, 27) a guilty Sam tries to minimise the damage and slips a note to Deb to align what he told Elizabeth with what Deb may tell her (27). Sam ends the month sorry, ashamed and troubled for Deb’s sake, knowing well that this will not bode well for her (31).

See the full diary entries for October 1668

November 1668

Henry Brouncker returns and Sir W. Penn is removed from his position. All fear that the Duke of Buckingham rules the King and is a scheming force (4).Lord Sandwich is still the target of the Commissioners regarding the prizes (15).

Under Elizabeth’s distraught and watchful eyes, Sam tries to conceal his anguish over Deb (1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9,). slipping her a note telling her that he only admitted to kissing her and that she should do the same (9). An honest Deb confesses all (which is much more than just a kiss) to Elizabeth (10). Elizabeth explodes at her lying husband, and over the next days Deb is asked to leave (12, 13). Deb moves to an undisclosed place (16). Sam promises Elizabeth never to see her again. No sooner is Deb gone than Sam tracks her down, has an illicit sexual encounter with her in a coach and gives her 20s. He lies about his whereabouts to Elizabeth, who the next day discovers the truth (18, 19). Raging fights ensue (19, 20) and Elizabeth forces Sam to write Deb a note, calling her a “whore” and swearing he will never see her again. Elizabeth discloses the sordid mess to W. Hewer and asks him to deliver the note to Deb and to follow Sam everywhere he goes (20, 21, 23). A wise Hewer agrees, but never delivers the note to Deb, instead telling her that Sam would never see her again and offers her the “best Christian counsel” that he could (21). Hewer confirms Elizabeth’s claims that she has always been faithful to Sam even when she had been pursued by other men (10, 20). By month end, Sam refers to his constant shadow, Hewer, as his “jailor” and “guard” (23, 30).

The only thing that seems to be going well for Sam is that he finally buys his new coach (1, 28, 29).

See the full diary entries for November 1668

December 1668

Sam hopes that the naval turnover is done, “being now none left of the old stock but my Lord Brouncker, J. Mennes, who is ready to leave the world, and myself” (7). When the surveyor, Middleton, brings false accusations against W. Hewer, Sam explodes in anger, prepares a defense with Hewer and sees it through the Board that clears Hewer of any charges (8, 15, 18).

Sam enjoys his new coach and buys a beautiful pair of black horses (1, 12). While driving about he spies Deb on the streets and hopes that Elizabeth did not see her (7). Elizabeth hears that Deb is doing well and receiving money from someone. She accuses Sam of providing the money to her, a claim that he can honestly (for once) deny. (18).

Sam ends the year resolved never to bring sorrow to Elizabeth again, worried about his backwards accounts which he has not balanced in two years and worried about his eyes (31).

See the full diary entries for December 1668