Annotations and comments

has posted 479 annotations/comments since 9 November 2013.


About Monday 29 October 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

“Sam today answers the question we were tossing around back when he bought the guineas. He bought 2,000 of them and paid the discount as a surcharge.“

Many thanks Paul Chapin for mentioning guineas. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out what ginnys were.

About Thursday 20 September 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

“. . . but am mightily troubled for my great books that I miss, and I am troubled the more for fear there should be more missing than what I find, though by the room they take on the shelves I do not find any reason to think it.“

It’s strange that Sam, with his proclivity for paperwork, hadn’t kept a catalog of all his books, especially since he’s so attached to them. If he had, he wouldn’t have had to wonder if any were missing.

About Friday 7 September 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

CGS wondered if Sam’s “drawers” were like today’s Boxers.

You won’t see men today wearing anything like the voluminous drawers worn in the 1600s. No elastic, either.

“Underneath their shirt or tunic they clothed their legs in braies or breeches. Braies were a loose fitting drawer-like garment which was attached at the waist with a drawstring and varied in length from upper-thigh to below the knee.”

See photos and more text here.…

From what I hear, they were laundered once a year, whether they needed it or not.

About Tuesday 17 July 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Sam’s physical problems brings it home how it was to live with almost no effective diagnosis or medicine at all, not even aspirin or Pepto Bismol. You just suffered until it passed—or you got worse and sometimes died. But there were plenty of old wives takes, then as now. We’re supposed to know better now, but it turns out we don’t know much better.

About Sunday 15 July 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Michael Robinson:

" ... to my washing my feet the night before."

It's the unnecessary bathing that will get you every time!

I’ll bet Sam washed his feet once a month whether they needed it or not.

As for pasteurized milk, as we all know, nobody in 1666 could have known what pasteurization was, since it wasn’t to be discovered until nearly 200 years later. But before then plenty if people drank unpasteurized milk throughout their lives and lived to tell about it, just as plenty if people did even after pasteurization was discovered to the present day.

About Tuesday 19 June 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

At one time it was the fashion for women to tightly bind their breasts. Now I see why. Maybe Mercer will get smart.

About Tuesday 12 June 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

“. . . Whereof the Dutch annotators, as several fathers did long before them, on 1 Cor. 11:14, make men’s nourishing and wearing of long hair to be some degree, it being given to women, not only for an ornament and covering, but also in part for distinction of the female sex from the male."

Who is it who’s having a problem with the “distinction of the female sex from the male”? Certainly not the women! Isn’t this is one more example of the “superior” sex, expecting the world to conform to male needs and desires—then as now. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

About Monday 4 June 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Paul Chapin: "his right eye stopped with okum"

I don’t know how that might have happened but it could be that he merely rubbed his eye and got some oakum into it. Picking Oakum for hours on end was a punishment for Oscar Wilde some 200 years later, which contributed to his early demise. Whether picking oakum was used as punishment for sailors on ships in Pepys’ time, I don’t know, but they were generally treated very harshly.

About Sunday 3 June 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Gerald and Gilllian. I wasn’t suggesting a diary filled with recriminations, just a word or two of doubt about hw maybe his his extra curricular activities were unwise. He writes far more about liking plays too much but not even a word adultery. He claims to love Bess, but loving her doesn’t seem to include faithfulness. I wonder if she ever mentioned it. Too bad she didn't keep a diary. How valuable would that be!

About Sunday 3 June 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Pepys never expresses a moment’s guilt about his adulterous liaisons, as if they were his due. I should think that even in the 1600s, married men and women were expected to be “true” to one another, and they did take vows to that effect. The 10 Commandments were known and probably commented upon in sermons. Yet, Pepys is so cavalier about his adultery, as if he never heard there was anything the least bit wrong about having sex with extraneous women while he was married.

About Monday 28 May 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Di Phi:
I find it interesting that the shape of Sam's day is so different from ours. In Sam's life, it isn't unusual for folks stop by in the middle of a work day, have a bite to eat, play a little music together, and then disperse back to work.

OTOH, our days run from 8 to 5 (or later), and we only have a little fun after work.

I think I prefer Sam's way!

It’s only possible with a houseful of servants.

I see Bess can be as catty as a 21st century woman. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. Meow!

About Sunday 27 May 1666

Louise Hudson  •  Link

In Pepys’ time a man could disinherit his wife (all the money being his and his alone). It’s good that he decided to provide for her, many wives were not so fortunate and were left destitute.. I wonder if he also bequeathed her the second best bed.