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

Wednesday 16 January 1666/67

Up, and by coach to White Hall, and there to the Duke of York as usual. Here Sir W. Coventry come to me aside in the Duke’s chamber, to tell that he had not answered part of a late letter of mine, because ‘littera scripta manet’. About his leaving the office, he tells me, [it is] because he finds that his business at Court will not permit him to attend it; and then he confesses that he seldom of late could come from it with satisfaction, and therefore would not take the King’s money for nothing. I professed my sorrow for it, and prayed the continuance of his favour; which he promised. I do believe he hath [done] like a very wise man in reference to himself; but I doubt it will prove ill for the King, and for the office. Prince Rupert, I hear to-day, is very ill; yesterday given over, but better to-day. This day, before the Duke of York, the business of the Muster-Masters was reported, and Balty found the best of the whole number, so as the Duke enquired who he was, and whether he was a stranger by his two names, both strange, and offered that he and one more, who hath done next best, should have not only their owne, but part of the others’ salary, but that I having said he was my brother-in-law, he did stop, but they two are ordered their pay, which I am glad of, and some of the rest will lose their pay, and others be laid by the heels. I was very glad of this being ended so well. I did also, this morning, move in a business wherein Mr. Hater hath concerned me, about getting a ship, laden with salt from France, permitted to unload, coming in after the King’s declaration was out, which I have hopes by some dexterity to get done. Then with the Duke of York to the King, to receive his commands for stopping the sale this day of some prize-goods at the Prize-Office, goods fit for the Navy; and received the King’s commands, and carried them to the Lords’ House, to my Lord Ashly, who was angry much thereat, and I am sorry it fell to me to carry the order, but I cannot help it. So, against his will, he signed a note I writ to the Commissioners of Prizes, which I carried and delivered to Kingdone, at their new office in Aldersgate Streete. Thence a little to the Exchange, where it was hot that the Prince was dead, but I did rectify it. So home to dinner, and found Balty, told him the good news, and then after dinner away, I presently to White Hall, and did give the Duke of York a memorial of the salt business, against the Council, and did wait all the Council for answer, walking a good while with Sir Stephen Fox, who, among other things, told me his whole mystery in the business of the interest he pays as Treasurer for the Army. They give him 12d. per pound quite through the Army, with condition to be paid weekly. This he undertakes upon his own private credit, and to be paid by the King at the end of every four months. If the King pay him not at the end of the four months, then, for all the time he stays longer, my Lord Treasurer, by agreement, allows him eight per cent. per annum for the forbearance. So that, in fine, he hath about twelve per cent. from the King and the Army, for fifteen or sixteen months’ interest; out of which he gains soundly, his expense being about 130,000l. per annum; and hath no trouble in it, compared, as I told him, to the trouble I must have to bring in an account of interest. I was, however, glad of being thus enlightened, and so away to the other council door, and there got in and hear a piece of a cause, heard before the King, about a ship deserted by her fellows (who were bound mutually to defend each other), in their way to Virginy, and taken by the enemy, but it was but meanly pleaded.

Then all withdrew, and by and by the Council rose, and I spoke with the Duke of York, and he told me my business was done, which I found accordingly in Sir Edward Walker’s books. And so away, mightily satisfied, to Arundell House, and there heard a little good discourse, and so home, and there to Sir W. Batten, where I heard the examinations in two of our prizes, which do make but little for us, so that I do begin to doubt their proving prize, which troubled me. So home to supper with my wife, and after supper my wife told me how she had moved to W. Hewer the business of my sister for a wife to him, which he received with mighty acknowledgements, as she says, above anything; but says he hath no intention to alter his condition: so that I am in some measure sorry she ever moved it; but I hope he will think it only come from her.

So after supper a little to the office, to enter my journall, and then home to bed. Talk there is of a letter to come from Holland, desiring a place of treaty; but I do doubt it. This day I observe still, in many places, the smoking remains of the late fire: the ways mighty bad and dirty. This night Sir R. Ford told me how this day, at Christ Church Hospital, they have given a living over 200l. per annum to Mr. Sanchy, my old acquaintance, which I wonder at, he commending him mightily; but am glad of it. He tells me, too, how the famous Stillingfleete was a Bluecoat boy. The children at this day are provided for in the country by the House, which I am glad also to hear.

Tuesday 15 January 1666/67

Up, and to the office, where busy all the morning. Here my Lord Bruncker would have made me promise to go with him to a play this afternoon, where Knipp acts Mrs. Weaver’s great part in “The Indian Emperour,” and he says is coming on to be a great actor. But I am so fell to my business, that I, though against my inclination, will not go. At noon, dined with my wife and were pleasant, and then to the office, where I got Mrs. Burroughs ‘sola cum ego, and did toucher ses mamailles’ … She gone, I to my business and did much, and among other things to-night we were all mightily troubled how to prevent the sale of a great deal of hemp, and timber-deals, and other good goods to-morrow at the candle by the Prize Office, where it will be sold for little, and we shall be found to want the same goods and buy at extraordinary prices, and perhaps the very same goods now sold, which is a most horrid evil and a shame. At night home to supper and to bed with my mind mighty light to see the fruits of my diligence in having my business go off my hand so merrily.

Monday 14 January 1666/67

Up, and to the office, where busy getting beforehand with my business as fast as I can. At noon home to dinner, and presently afterward at my office again. I understand my father is pretty well again, blessed be God! and would have my Br[other] John come down to him for a little while. Busy till night, pleasing myself mightily to see what a deal of business goes off of a man’s hands when he stays by it, and then, at night, before it was late (yet much business done) home to supper, discourse with my wife, and to bed. Sir W. Batten tells me the Lords do agree at last with the Commons about the word “Nuisance” in the Irish Bill, and do desire a good correspondence between the two Houses; and that the King do intend to prorogue them the last of this month.

Sunday 13 January 1666/67

(Lord’s day). Up, and to church, where young Lowther come to church with Sir W. Pen and his Lady and daughter, and my wife tells me that either they are married or the match is quite perfected, which I am apt to believe, because all the peoples’ eyes in the church were much fixed upon them. At noon sent for Mercer, who dined with us, and very merry, and so I, after dinner, walked to the Old Swan, thinking to have got a boat to White Hall, but could not, nor was there anybody at home at Michell’s, where I thought to have sat with her … So home, to church, a dull sermon, and then home at my chamber all the evening. So to supper and to bed.

Saturday 12 January 1666/67

Up, still lying long in bed; then to the office, where sat very long. Then home to dinner, and so to the office again, mighty busy, and did to the joy of my soul dispatch much business, which do make my heart light, and will enable me to recover all the ground I have lost (if I have by my late minding my pleasures lost any) and assert myself. So home to supper, and then to read a little in Moore’s “Antidote against Atheisme,” a pretty book, and so to bed.

Friday 11 January 1666/67

Up, being troubled at my being found abed a-days by all sorts of people, I having got a trick of sitting up later than I need, never supping, or very seldom, before 12 at night. Then to the office, there busy all the morning, and among other things comes Sir W. Warren and walked with me awhile, whose discourse I love, he being a very wise man and full of good counsel, and his own practices for wisdom much to be observed, and among other things he tells me how he is fallen in with my Lord Bruncker, who has promised him most particular inward friendship and yet not to appear at the board to do so, and he tells me how my Lord Bruncker should take notice of the two flaggons he saw at my house at dinner, at my late feast, and merrily, yet I know enviously, said, I could not come honestly by them. This I am glad to hear, though vexed to see his ignoble soul, but I shall beware of him, and yet it is fit he should see I am no mean fellow, but can live in the world, and have something. At noon home to dinner, and then to the office with my people and very busy, and did dispatch to my great satisfaction abundance of business, and do resolve, by the grace of God, to stick to it till I have cleared my heart of most things wherein I am in arrear in public and private matters. At night, home to supper and to bed. This day ill news of my father’s being very ill of his old grief the rupture, which troubles me.

Thursday 10 January 1666/67

Up, and at the office all the morning. At noon home and, there being business to do in the afternoon, took my Lord Bruncker home with me, who dined with me. His discourse and mine about the bad performances of the Controller’s and Surveyor’s places by the hands they are now in, and the shame to the service and loss the King suffers by it. Then after dinner to the office, where we and some of the chief of the Trinity House met to examine the occasion of the loss of The Prince Royall, the master and mates being examined, which I took and keep, and so broke up, and I to my letters by the post, and so home and to supper with my mind at pretty good ease, being entered upon minding my business, and so to bed. This noon Mrs. Burroughs come to me about business, whom I did baiser …

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