Annotations and comments

Louise Hudson has posted 452 annotations/comments since 9 November 2013.

The most recent…


About Tuesday 8 January 1666/67

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Lady Denham. Considering the state of medicine and the knowledge of physiology in the 17th century—the microscope hadn’t been invented yet—and the horrific remedies of the time, any old wives’ tale could be considered “medicine.” “17th-century English life expectancy was only about 35 years, largely because infant and child mortality remained high. Life expectancy was under 25 years in the early Colony of Virginia, and in seventeenth-century New England, about 40 percent died before reaching adulthood.”…. Check out old medical and surgical books if you have the stomach for it.

About Tuesday 1 January 1666/67

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Salting was one of the few ways of preserving food for later consumption before the advent of canning and refrigeration. Pickling is related.

About Monday 24 December 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Larry Bunce provided an interesting and detailed summary of Pepys' eye problems. I feel very fortunate to have lived in the 20th and 21st centuries where we have a good vision correction system. I doubt I could read a word without glasses, which I started wearing in my teens, and the correction has gotten stronger with each passing decade. How awful to have had so little vision help back then, to say nothing of syphilis!

About Sunday 23 December 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

How times have changed! (Thank the powers that be). Can any woman on this list imagine being in such a position with a man, especially another woman’s husband, with one’s own husband sitting right there? In my whole long life I have never had a man even attempt to take such liberties with me or anyone else. Yuck!

About Friday 21 December 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Eric Walla: We probably have discussed this before. I get the distinct impression that mother and daughter come to Mr. Pepys, fortified with the rumour if not the knowledge that minor molestation is the price to pay for receiving Sam's assistance. It's downright chilling how matter-of-fact Sam reports the activity.”

I think you’ve unfortunately hit the nail on the head.

About Monday 17 December 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

“Spent the evening in fitting my books, to have the number set upon each, in order to my having an alphabet of my whole, which will be of great ease to me.”

If he’d had the Internet there would have been no need for such work. Just a few taps on a keyboard and he’d have the place where the passage appeared, and he wouldn’t even have to touch a book. Every word would be accessible on screen. Who knew?

About Tuesday 11 December 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

I’ve always defined homely as plain and unsophisticated. It’s exactly how most of us would describe a celebrity without make-up, designer clothes or marketing hype.

About Friday 7 December 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

and there I sat with my cloak about my face, ...I was in mighty pain lest I should be seen by any body to be at a play.

He probably means anyone who knew he had promised to not to go to the theatre and might publicize it, or that he might be seen by someone who would mention it to his wife.

“and mighty good friends with my poor wife”

I think he meant she wasn’t giving him the cold shoulder after their recent contretemps.

About Sunday 2 December 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

CGS: who be we????????????????

Sam and Bess, no doubt. His behavior is outrageous, but not so outrageous as to bring a paramour into his house with his wife there.

I also suspect that Sam engages in a lot of fantasy regarding women and that many of his “activities” are all in his mind.