Annotations and comments

Louise Hudson has posted 478 annotations/comments since 9 November 2013.

Comments

About Thursday 6 June 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

I learned how to remember that the sweet dish after a meal is spelled with two esses, which stand for strawbwerry shortcake, though I don't suppose Sam ever had the pleasure of such a supreme dish. The one s in desert stands for sand. I expect everyone reading this will never forget how to spell either word from now on.

I also got a kick out of wastecoat. Sounds like something a trash collector would wear. ;)

About Monday 3 June 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Assuming Pauline is still here after 10 years, as A. Hamilton is, Sam does take his father's side, most recently on May 30, when he wrote

"indeed my mother is grown now so pettish that I know not how my father is able to bear with it. I did talk to her so as did not indeed become me, but I could not help it, she being so unsufferably foolish and simple, so that my father, poor man, is become a very unhappy man."

I think that indeed counts as taking sides.

About Sunday 2 June 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

I didn't mean did the parrot survive until today. I just wondered if it had survived your great granfather's possible wrath--at the time! You posted that story 10 years ago. I'm glad to see you are still involved in Pepys' diary.

About Friday 31 May 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

I wish Sam would have given more detail as to what the problem was between his parents so we could apply a little 21st century psychology to it. He takes the typical male attitude (commom even today) that it must be his mother's fault and that his father should be pitied for having to put up with her. Until well into the 20th century this is what people did, even doctors. The woman was seen to be cranky and the man as reasonable when the woman may well have had a lot to be cranky about and unable to express herself, having been told all her life to be quiet, allow the men to run things and not to complain. I can work out a probable scenario of what is happening in that household and it may have nothing to do with menopause--another thing that has been used to attack women who have been powerless their whole lives and have plenty to complain about. She's stuck and she knows it, but she has no tools to understand it or express it. And now she has a son who also blames her for burdening his father. . Oh, for a good dose of consciousness-raising! But she is living in the wrong century for that.

About Monday 6 May 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

It's been wisely said that the Church of England saved the English from Chrisrianity (attributed to William Empson, though I can find no documentation).

About Sunday 5 May 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Dirk, Pepys may be a mere boy of 28, but his wife is only 20--and they've been married for nearly 6 years, married when she was only 14.

About Friday 3 May 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

In addition, we, in twentieth century USA, never called it laying or lying. We called it sleeping over. I wonder what people will make of that 500 years from now.

About Friday 3 May 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

It seems to me that when Pepys says "lay with" he simply means he sleeps in someone's house. I doubt that the term "get laid" was even used in 1661. If he could read these annotations he'd probably be deeply embarrassed.

About Monday 29 April 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

"BUTTERY, in the Houses of Noblemen and Gentlemen, is the Room belonging to the Butler; where he deposites the Utensils belonging to his Office; as Table-Linnen, Napkins, Pots, Tankards, Glasses, Cruets, Salvers, Spoons, Knives, Forks, Pepper, Mustard, &c.; As to its Position, Sir Henry Wotton, says, it ought to be placed on the North Side of the Building, which is designed for the Offices. We, in England, generally place it near the Cellar, viz. the Room commonly just on the Top of the Cellar-Stairs."
---The Builder's Dictionary. 1734.

In other words a "Butler's Pantry."

"A butler's pantry or serving pantry is a utility room in a large house, primarily used to store serving items, rather than food. Traditionally, a butler's pantry was used for storage, cleaning and counting of silver; European butlers often slept in the pantry, as their job was to keep the silver under lock and key. The wine log and merchant's account books may also have been kept in there. The room would be used by the butler and other domestic staff; it is often called a butler's pantry even in households where there is no butler.

"In modern homes, butler's pantries are usually located in transitional spaces between kitchens and dining rooms, and used as staging areas for serving meals. They commonly contain countertops, and storage for tableware, serving pieces, table linens, candles, wine, and other dining-room articles. More elaborate versions may include refrigerators, sinks, or dishwashers."

Wikipedia

About Tuesday 23 April 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Terry, Yes, yours is how it was written. I was quoting from faulty memory instead of checking. Pepys wrote "bedfellow," and I was thrown by taking "fellow" literally. It was, in fact, Mrs. Frankleyn. Therefore, my point was an error. My apologies.

About Wednesday 24 April 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

I'm afraid that it was a sign of the times for a man to call his residence "my house." Everything a married couple had belonged to the husband and it had nothing to do with property rights. He was king of his castle and if he sheltered his wife (or other relatives) it was out of the "goodness" of his heart. Women had almost no legal rights to anything, not even the house she shared with her husband.

About Tuesday 23 April 1661

Louise Hudson  •  Link

I wonder how many here realize that Elizabeth Pepys was only 15 years old when she and Pepys were married and was only 20 in April 1661 when the above entries were made.

I do wonder at the entry where Pepys says he sent her to bed "with her bedfellow, Mr. Hunt". No ambiguity there as far as I can tell. It can't be claimed that he sent them to their separate beds. He calls him her bedfellow!

About Tuesday 20 November 1660

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Bruce's description sounds like something much older than the "late '60s". There were automatic washing machines in the '60s. I woukdn't have thought that anyone in a more or less modern town was doing laundry in the way he explains after the 1920s or so. except perhaps in real backwaters. I grew up in the '40s and '50s and we had a wringer washer. We were a working class family and it was not unusual for people in our class to have an electric washing machine.

About Tuesday 13 November 1660

Louise Hudson  •  Link

My grandmother had a coal stove. She said she could judge the approximate temperature by opening the oven door and feeling the heat on her face. She baked many loaves of bread and meals for a large family so she must have known what she was doing. I think one can learn to judge approximate temperatures the way my grandmother did with enough experience--and enough burnt meals.

About Sunday 11 November 1660

Louise Hudson  •  Link

We don't call them servants these days, but there are definite social divides. When I worked in a large corporation, you didn't find the executives going out to lunch with the secretaries--and certainly not with the cleaning staff! They wouldn't meet after work for a drink, either. If a male executive was seen having lunch or a drink with his secretary, tongues would wag. This took place in the land of "classlessness" and "equality" and not so many years ago, either.

About Friday 2 November 1660

Louise Hudson  •  Link

If digestion in Pepys time was anything like it is today, people would have slept propped up in bed to prevent acid reflux, probably even more prevalent in those days considering what they ate, the time they ate their final meal and what they drank, no doubt, lots of beer and ale.