Annotations and comments

mountebank has posted 80 annotations/comments since 11 May 2013.


About Wednesday 14 August 1667

mountebank  •  Link

As an echo of the discussion in the annotations about Elisabeth and the whitster, I'm reading "The Mirror & the Light" and my eyes lit up at the chapter "The Bleach Fields" and particularly this exchange between Cromwell and his daughter Jenneke:

"They went out to the fields ... I mean the ... raamhoven - the bleach fields?"

"Ah," he says, "not bleach fields, you mean the tenter-grounds. Where they pin out the cloth to dry."

Before anyone asks, the ellipses do not signify any rudery.

About Monday 29 July 1667

mountebank  •  Link

A mega entry indeed.

"One thing extraordinary was, this day a man, a Quaker, came naked through the Hall, only very civilly tied about the privities to avoid scandal"

Here's the Coronavirus version:

"A man has been spotted strutting down Oxford Street in London wearing a face mask fashioned into a teeny G-string. Mate, I don't think that's how you're supposed to wear them."…

About Tuesday 18 June 1667

mountebank  •  Link

"but *why* is Peg Pen doing what she does? She has a reputation to lose. Most odd. And I don't think any of us regard Sam as Adonis Personified and Irresistible to the ladies, which makes her behaviour seem to me even more strange."

"Good RG entry on Peg et al. He's just an charmer." I agree with Robert Gertz on this point too. Sam does seem to be attractive to a wide range of women for whatever reason(s). Even though he clearly has a predatory side. I suspect it might be part of his genuine general curiosity, if he was able to show interest in the lives of the women as he was chasing, that might have added to his charm. If you look through the diary you'll find many examples of him engaging in conversations with women (often with an agenda). I do wonder if this was rather atypical of his time.

It's tempting to split people, and men, into nice ones vs bad ones, but it's seldom that simple.

About Thursday 16 May 1667

mountebank  •  Link

Pepys is like a dog with a bone over Carcasse isn't he? The Pepys of the diary isn't a particularly courageous sort but he seems to be going out on a limb over this. Maybe Pepys is so confident of the case, and that friends of Carcasse won't fight hard enough on his behalf, that he sees he's onto a winner and there will be credit for dealing with a rogue. Or maybe he's doing damage limitation for the Board, and for himself, naturally.

About Wednesday 8 May 1667

mountebank  •  Link

"I do still see that he is a man of good wit but most strange experience, and acquaintance with all manner of subtleties and tricks, that I do think him not fit for me to keep any acquaintance with him, lest he some time or other shew me a slippery trick"

I find this revealing of the character of Pepys, at least insofar as he sees himself. In the words of Tony Blair "I'm a pretty straight sort of guy".

About Tuesday 9 April 1667

mountebank  •  Link

"she was to my thinking at this time une de plus pretty mohers that ever I did voir in my vida"

For some reason this brought to mind Polari. I could almost imagine Sandy (Kenneth Williams) saying it.

About Friday 15 March 1666/67

mountebank  •  Link

Having experienced the past week in the UK and having read: "my Lady Carteret talks nothing but sorrow and afflictions coming on us, and indeed I do fear the same. So away and met Dr. Fuller, Bishop of Limricke, and walked an hour with him in the Court talking of newes only, and he do think that matters will be bad with us."

I'm very much of a mind with you SDS. As a contrast to the plague year of 1665, it's been striking how unacceptable the general public is finding being told by our leaders about the inevitability of people dying.

About Friday 8 March 1666/67

mountebank  •  Link

A definite victory in terms of office politics for Pepys.

This entry serves as a handy shorthand for Pepys relations in the office:
Commissioner Pett: a fawning rogue, often wrong
[Sir] W. Pen: a cunning rogue, looks out for No.1, unreliable
[Sir] W. Batten: will speak out for what's right
Sir G. Carteret: presumably also sound in this engagement
Sir W. Coventry: likewise

About Thursday 7 March 1666/67

mountebank  •  Link

Lots of hugging, for example "it was pretty to see how Pett hugged the occasion of having anything against Sir W. Batten"

I would guess this has carried over into the current usage of "to hug myself with glee".

About Sunday 3 March 1666/67

mountebank  •  Link

"the Duke of York hath a mind to get him [Pierce] one of his places in St. Thomas’s Hospitall"

My first thought was "gosh, St. Thomas’s is still around, what an old hospital". Had a quick look on the Internet where there are suggestions that it was founded more than 900 years ago. Blimey.

About Wednesday 16 January 1666/67

mountebank  •  Link

Referring to Terry's comment from 2010:

"It was mentiond by the secretary that the councell had thought fitt that the expts. for the making out the Theory of the Laws of motion formerly begun by Dr Wren D crone & mr Hooke"

this looks like the term "Laws of Motion" was already in usage as a general term in 1666/67 and perhaps was from this adopted by Newton.

About Wednesday 12 December 1666

mountebank  •  Link

"He tells me how the King hath lately paid about 30,000l.1 to clear debts of my Lady Castlemayne’s"

This really puts into perspective the amounts Boris Johnson arranged to go to Jennifer Arcuri for "IT lessons".

About Tuesday 19 June 1666

mountebank  •  Link

“I find their victory begins to shrinke there, as well as ours here.”

Dog in the manger thinking. Since we're very dissatisfied with the result let's take consolation from spinning the other side's view as also being one of dissatisfaction.