A new diary entry appears here at the end of each day.

Friday 7 December 1666

Up, and by water to the Exchequer, where I got my tallys finished for the last quarter for Tangier, and having paid all my fees I to the Swan, whither I sent for some oysters, and thither comes Mr. Falconbridge and Spicer and many more clerks; and there we eat and drank, and a great deal of their sorry discourse, and so parted, and I by coach home, meeting Balty in the streete about Charing Crosse walking, which I am glad to see and spoke to him about his mustering business, I being now to give an account how the several muster-masters have behaved themselves, and so home to dinner, where finding the cloth laid and much crumpled but clean, I grew angry and flung the trenchers about the room, and in a mighty heat I was: so a clean cloth was laid, and my poor wife very patient, and so to dinner, and in comes Mrs. Barbara Sheldon, now Mrs. Wood, and dined with us, she mighty fine, and lives, I perceive, mighty happily, which I am glad [of] for her sake, but hate her husband for a block-head in his choice. So away after dinner, leaving my wife and her, and by water to the Strand, and so to the King’s playhouse, where two acts were almost done when I come in; and there I sat with my cloak about my face, and saw the remainder of “The Mayd’s Tragedy;” a good play, and well acted, especially by the younger Marshall, who is become a pretty good actor, and is the first play I have seen in either of the houses since before the great plague, they having acted now about fourteen days publickly. But I was in mighty pain lest I should be seen by any body to be at a play. Soon as done I home, and then to my office awhile, and then home and spent the night evening my Tangier accounts, much to my satisfaction, and then to supper, and mighty good friends with my poor wife, and so to bed.

Thursday 6 December 1666

Up, but very good friends with her before I rose, and so to the office, where we sat all the forenoon, and then home to dinner, where Harman dined with us, and great sport to hear him tell how Will Joyce grows rich by the custom of the City coming to his end of the towne, and how he rants over his brother and sister for their keeping an Inne, and goes thither and tears like a prince, calling him hosteller and his sister hostess. Then after dinner, my wife and brother, in another habit; go out to see a play; but I am not to take notice that I know of my brother’s going. So I to the office, where very busy till late at night, and then home. My wife not pleased with the play, but thinks that it is because she is grown more critical than she used to be, but my brother she says is mighty taken with it. So to supper and to bed.

This day, in the Gazette, is the whole story of defeating the Scotch rebells, and of the creation of the Duke of Cambridge, Knight of the Garter.

Wednesday 5 December 1666

Up, and by water to White Hall, where we did much business before the Duke of York, which being done, I away home by water again, and there to my office till noon busy. At noon home, and Goodgroome dined with us, who teaches my wife to sing. After dinner I did give him my song, “Beauty retire,” which he has often desired of me, and without flattery I think is a very good song. He gone, I to the office, and there late, very busy doing much business, and then home to supper and talk, and then scold with my wife for not reckoning well the times that her musique master hath been with her, but setting down more than I am sure, and did convince her, they had been with her, and in an ill humour of anger with her to bed.

Tuesday 4 December 1666

Up, and to the office, where we sat all the morning. At noon dined at home. After dinner presently to my office, and there late and then home to even my Journall and accounts, and then to supper much eased in mind, and last night’s good news, which is more and more confirmed with particulars to very good purpose, and so to bed.

Monday 3 December 1666

Up, and, among a great many people that come to speak with me, one was my Lord Peterborough’s gentleman, who comes to me to dun me to get some money advanced for my Lord; and I demanding what newes, he tells me that at Court they begin to fear the business of Scotland more and more; and that the Duke of York intends to go to the North to raise an army, and that the King would have some of the Nobility and others to go and assist; but they were so served the last year, among others his Lord, in raising forces at their own charge, for fear of the French invading us, that they will not be got out now, without money advanced to them by the King, and this is like to be the King’s case for certain, if ever he comes to have need of any army.

He and others gone, I by water to Westminster, and there to the Exchequer, and put my tallys in a way of doing for the last quarter. But my not following it the last week has occasioned the clerks some trouble, which I am sorry for, and they are mad at. Thence at noon home, and there find Kate Joyce, who dined with me: Her husband and she are weary of their new life of being an Innkeeper, and will leave it, and would fain get some office; but I know none the foole is fit for, but would be glad to help them, if I could, though they have enough to live on, God be thanked! though their loss hath been to the value of 3000l. W. Joyce now has all the trade, she says, the trade being come to that end of the towne. She dined with me, my wife being ill of her months in bed. I left her with my wife, and away myself to Westminster Hall by appointment and there found out Burroughs, and I took her by coach as far as the Lord Treasurer’s and called at the cake house by Hales’s, and there in the coach eat and drank and then carried her home … So having set her down in the palace I to the Swan, and there did the first time ‘baiser’ the little sister of Sarah that is come into her place, and so away by coach home, where to my vyall and supper and then to bed, being weary of the following of my pleasure and sorry for my omitting (though with a true salvo to my vowes) the stating my last month’s accounts in time, as I should, but resolve to settle, and clear all my business before me this month, that I may begin afresh the next yeare, and enjoy some little pleasure freely at Christmasse. So to bed, and with more cheerfulness than I have done a good while, to hear that for certain the Scott rebells are all routed; they having been so bold as to come within three miles of Edinburgh, and there given two or three repulses to the King’s forces, but at last were mastered. Three or four hundred killed or taken, among which their leader, one Wallis, and seven ministers, they having all taken the Covenant a few days before, and sworn to live and die in it, as they did; and so all is likely to be there quiet again. There is also the very good newes come of four New-England ships come home safe to Falmouth with masts for the King; which is a blessing mighty unexpected, and without which, if for nothing else, we must have failed the next year. But God be praised for thus much good fortune, and send us the continuance of his favour in other things! So to bed.

Sunday 2 December 1666

(Lord’s day). Up, and to church, and after church home to dinner, where I met Betty Michell and her husband, very merry at dinner, and after dinner, having borrowed Sir W. Pen’s coach, we to Westminster, they two and my wife and I to Mr. Martin’s, where find the company almost all come to the christening of Mrs. Martin’s child, a girl. A great deal of good plain company. After sitting long, till the church was done, the Parson comes, and then we to christen the child. I was Godfather, and Mrs. Holder (her husband, a good man, I know well), and a pretty lady, that waits, it seems, on my Lady Bath, at White Hall, her name, Mrs. Noble, were Godmothers. After the christening comes in the wine and the sweetmeats, and then to prate and tattle, and then very good company they were, and I among them. Here was old Mrs. Michell and Howlett, and several married women of the Hall, whom I knew mayds. Here was also Mrs. Burroughs and Mrs. Bales, the young widow, whom I led home, and having staid till the moon was up, I took my pretty gossip to White Hall with us, and I saw her in her lodging, and then my owne company again took coach, and no sooner in the coach but something broke, that we were fain there to stay till a smith could be fetched, which was above an hour, and then it costing me 6s. to mend. Away round by the wall and Cow Lane, for fear it should break again; and in pain about the coach all the way. But to ease myself therein Betty Michell did sit at the same end with me … Being very much pleased with this, we at last come home, and so to supper, and then sent them by boat home, and we to bed.

When I come home I went to Sir W. Batten’s, and there I hear more ill newes still: that all our New England fleete, which went out lately, are put back a third time by foul weather, and dispersed, some to one port and some to another; and their convoys also to Plymouth; and whether any of them be lost or not, we do not know. This, added to all the rest, do lay us flat in our hopes and courages, every body prophesying destruction to the nation.

Saturday 1 December 1666

Up, and to the office, where we sat all the morning. At home to dinner, and then abroad walking to the Old Swan, and in my way I did see a cellar in Tower Streete in a very fresh fire, the late great winds having blown it up.1 It seemed to be only of log-wood, that Hath kept the fire all this while in it. Going further, I met my late Lord Mayor Bludworth, under whom the City was burned, and went with him by water to White Hall. But, Lord! the silly talk that this fellow had, only how ready he would be to part with all his estate in these difficult times to advance the King’s service, and complaining that now, as every body did lately in the fire, every body endeavours to save himself, and let the whole perish: but a very weak man he seems to be. I left him at White Hall, he giving 6d. towards the boat, and I to Westminster Hall, where I was again defeated in my expectation of Burroughs. However, I was not much sorry for it, but by coach home, in the evening, calling at Faythorne’s, buying three of my Lady Castlemayne’s heads, printed this day, which indeed is, as to the head, I think, a very fine picture, and like her. I did this afternoon get Mrs. Michell to let me only have a sight of a pamphlet lately printed, but suppressed and much called after, called “The Catholique’s Apology;” lamenting the severity of the Parliament against them, and comparing it with the lenity of other princes to Protestants; giving old and late instances of their loyalty to their princes, whatever is objected against them; and excusing their disquiets in Queen Elizabeth’s time, for that it was impossible for them to think her a lawfull Queen, if Queen Mary, who had been owned as such, were so; one being the daughter of the true, and the other of a false wife: and that of the Gunpowder Treason, by saying that it was only the practice of some of us, if not the King, to trepan some of their religion into it, it never being defended by the generality of their Church, nor indeed known by them; and ends with a large Catalogue, in red letters, of the Catholiques which have lost their lives in the quarrel of the late King and this. The thing is very well writ indeed. So home to my letters, and then to my supper and to bed.

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