Annotations and comments

has posted 300 annotations/comments since 14 March 2013.

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About Sunday 25 October 1668

john  •  Link

Though this is my second time around (and hopefully I will last for a third), I still find it difficult to place myself in the minds of our main protagonists. This was a time period of arranged marriages based on finances, women mostly regarded as chattel, and all sorts of practices now rightfully considered heinous that form the social backdrop. Ten years ago, I wondered how much Elizabeth knew but now I wonder whether she cared as long as he consorted with (or preyed upon) women of appropriate social standing. Her purported remark ("reproaching me with inconstancy and preferring a sorry girl before her") seems to indicate his choice rather than his behaviour.

(As for another round, I suspect that Phil's second round is mostly automated.)

About Thursday 22 October 1668

john  •  Link

"for that she hath not yet owned, in any fit manner of thanks, my late and principal service to her husband about his place, which I alone ought to have the thanks for, if they know as much as I do; but let it go: if they do not own it, I shall have it in my hand to teach them to do it."

I read this as anger by Pepys in not receiving proper thanks for service rendered (by Pepys to the Turners) and determination to let them know.

About Monday 12 October 1668

john  •  Link

@andy, I still do that with signature-sewn books. I know it as letting the book breathe. Sadly, there are few sewn books these days. Most publications are now "perfect-bound" (glued) and fall apart after a few years.

About Monday 12 October 1668

john  •  Link

The discussion on staircases, doors, rooms, and other greeting places gives me interesting insights into the protocols of Pepys's day.

("fish from Newfoundland" -- amusing.)

About Tuesday 29 September 1668

john  •  Link

@SDS, your comment of 16 Feb 2021 seems to be a good reason for the blanks (condensed into one blank page in L&M).

About Friday 25 September 1668

john  •  Link

"and so back to my chamber, the boy to read to me"

It would seem that "the boy" is receiving some sort of education.

About Monday 21 September 1668

john  •  Link

"Four more masts which were provided were too big to be sent. "

I am most curious as to how the other masts were sent by ship. (I assume that if towed, they would waterlog and sink.)

About Sunday 13 September 1668

john  •  Link

"and after supper made my wife to read them all over,"

I infer from this that Elizabeth is quite aware of what is happening at the Office.

About Thursday 10 September 1668

john  •  Link

@Jenny -- I would not call it a sulk. It is sometimes better to keep silent and suffer rather than respond and invoke a nasty row.

About Saturday 29 August 1668

john  •  Link

"where the Duke of York’s long letter was read, to their great trouble, and their suspecting me to have been the writer of it. [...] by our being put out of the Office, which do not at all trouble me to think of."

The die is cast?

About Tuesday 18 August 1668

john  •  Link

SDS, I do not doubt your transcription. I wondered whether they really referred to canines or something else (and why transport them at all).

About Tuesday 18 August 1668

john  •  Link

SDS: "to carry the Duke's hounds into Holland."

The Duke's hounds -- is this literal?

About Roll Call. Say hello!

john  •  Link

Greetings, All, from a farm in middle Ontario, Canada. I heard of this wonderful site from a colleague (when I was still in the software industry). I was unable to follow the first iteration in its entirety -- "life got in the way". I bought L&M and my habit, this second time around, is to read the L&M entry first and then the comments. Born in Ontario and studied mostly math (or maths, if you prefer), sideways after my doctorate, and finally retired (sort of). My thanks to all the commentators, who have greatly enriched my understanding of the diary and its environment, often offering interesting insights into human nature. I look forward to a third iteration.

About Thursday 9 July 1668

john  •  Link

"They also needed to return the right amount of hay bales to each farmer. "

And, presumably, the rightful hay as the quality can vary greatly. Mind, cows are not terribly fussy until they taste the good stuff.

About Wednesday 8 July 1668

john  •  Link

"and find him mighty free to me"

Pepys is becoming a confidant of the high and mighty.

About Thursday 2 July 1668

john  •  Link

I concur with the above, Sarah, but your comment "I post these letters the month before I read them in context" confused me.

About Friday 26 June 1668

john  •  Link

Quite correct, Mary K.

From the OED:

ancient, n.2 arch. (ˈeɪnʃənt)

[a corruption of ensign n., early forms of which, like ensyne, enseygne, were confounded with ancien, ancyen, the contemporary forms of ancient, with which they thus became formally identified from 16th to 18th c. Also spelt by pseudo-etymology antesign.]

1. An ensign, standard, or flag: pl. insignia, colours.

   1554 Chron. Grey Friars 87, I know that theys be Wyettes ancienttes.    1569 Rising in North 105 in Percy Rel. I. 293 Erle Percy there his ancyent spred.    1578 T. N., tr. Conq. W. India 23 The devise of this ensigne or auncient was flames of fire.    1587 Golding De Mornay xxii. 331 When Osyris led his people to Battell, he had diuers Antesignes‥as in one a Dog, in another an Ox.    1610 Chesters Triumph Particulars 1, A Man‥carying an Auncient of our colours of S. George.    1622 F. Markham Dec. Warre ii. ix. 73 This Ensigne we corruptly call Antient, and I haue seene it written Antesigne.    1629 S'hertogenbosh 48 To let flye all their Ancients as well vpon the gates, as the walles. [...]

About Monday 25 May 1668

john  •  Link

"But I was mightily pleased to come in this condition to see and ask [...]"

He has done well after going down.