Annotations and comments

has posted 126 annotations/comments since 7 August 2015.

Comments

About Monday 16 December 1667

JayW  •  Link

Extract from Daily Telegraph (1):

Richard Luckett,who has died aged 75, was for 30 years Samuel Pepys’s Librarian at Magdalene College, Cambridge.

The diarist and eyewitness to the Great Fire of London is famous for chronicling the life of a young man all about town between 1660 and 1669. Less well-known is the Mr Pepys, MP, of later years, who served as Secretary to the Admiralty and President of the Royal Society, and who as a collector assembled 3,000 volumes of printed books and manuscripts, intended as a conspectus of human knowledge.
Before he died in 1703, Pepys directed that his Library, including the six shorthand volumes of diary, go to Magdalene College, Cambridge. Arranged by height in his 12 glass-fronted bookcases, it was to live in a building to be renamed the Bibliotheca Pepysiana, and was to be a time-capsule. And so it remains.
Luckett was the ideal Pepys Librarian (1982-2012). No one could better have matched Pepys’s interests in the Royal Navy (Drake’s personal almanac and an illustrated survey of his fleet are in the Library), music, street ballads, scientific history (Newton’s own copy of Principia Mathematica), architecture, mechanical trades, engravings … More than a curator, Luckett came to embody the Library.
His passing claim to have “read it” – all – was disingenuous (surely not the bilingual dictionaries?), but he will never have a rival.

He oversaw the completion of the multi-volume published catalogue (1978-94) and contributed hundreds of pages to the Companion volume of the great Latham-Matthews edition of Pepys’s Diary (1970-83). His essay on music was later boiled down for Radio 4 under the improbable rubric “What would have been on Samuel Pepys’s iPod?”

About Monday 16 December 1667

JayW  •  Link

Off topic for today’s entry but the Daily Telegraph of 17 December 2020 has the obituary of Richard Luckett, for 30 years Samuel Pepys’s Librarian at Magdalene College, Cambridge. It has some details of Samuel ‘s bequest.

About Thursday 14 November 1667

JayW  •  Link

Thanks Terry. That wasn’t the one I meant though - it was a TV programme, part of a series called ‘Britain’s Most Historic Towns’.

About Thursday 14 November 1667

JayW  •  Link

There was an interesting programme on Channel 4 about Restoration London last night (14-11-2020) in which Professor Alice Roberts mentioned Samuel Pepys several times. One comment made to her was that it was the introduction of coffee (which led to minds being stimulated rather than suffering the effects of the morning draught of beer) which boosted the scientific discoveries at the Royal Society.

About Monday 28 October 1667

JayW  •  Link

It’s possible to look at 79 Pall Mall on Google Maps, with its blue plaque referring to Nell Gwynn.

About Thursday 12 September 1667

JayW  •  Link

If Pepys was on a horse he could still have had his boy with him who could have been on foot. It’s unlikely he would have gone faster than a walk through the streets so a boy could have kept up. Said boy would then have been available to hold the horse, carry the tallies, maybe return it if Pepys no longer needed it. Or there would have been an urchin ready to hold it in exchange for a ha’penny or farthing, guv!

About Sunday 16 June 1667

JayW  •  Link

A bit off-topic to comment on the comments but the OED quote from CGS above includes the word ‘bigly‘. An Old English word still in use by Donald Trump!

About Wednesday 5 June 1667

JayW  •  Link

‘law french’ as referred to in Terry’s first comment above was still being used in 1969 when I started working for the Inland Revenue. A married woman’s income had to be included on her husband’s tax return unless they were separated, when she could send in her own return and was referred to as a ‘feme sole’ in our internal instruction books.

About Sunday 5 May 1667

JayW  •  Link

JWB on 6 May 2010
Public works resulting from the great fire were to be paid for by a city tax on coal.
Coal posts can still be seen around the outskirts of London, with the City Arms on them, marking the boundary at which the Coal Tax became payable.

About Friday 26 April 1667

JayW  •  Link

Terry Foreman, I think the Queen’s Collection is at Buckingham Palace. And she still sends a carriage and escort to convey Ambassadors to Court for official arrivals and departures, SDS, all in red and black royal livery - or did until the COVID-19 lockdown, at least. At the moment she only has telephone meetings so London is deprived of the spectacle.

About Full Samuel Pepys Club interview

JayW  •  Link

Thanks for making this available, Lucy of the Samuel Pepys Club and Phil. As a reader who found the site by accident a few years ago on its second circuit I can say that the Annotations from the first readers do add immensely to the background and understanding of each day’s events. I’m a Londoner by birth, now retired and living in Hertfordshire, and so I also know quite a few of the places mentioned by Samuel. I look forward to each daily email with anticipation.

About Wednesday 27 March 1667

JayW  •  Link

San Diego Sarah. I understood this as a form of ‘going to rack and ruin’ which isn’t a common phrase now, but used to mean something was falling apart.

About Friday 15 February 1666/67

JayW  •  Link

“Terry Foreman on 15 Feb 2016 • Link

"'I moved for allowance for a house for Mr. Turner, and got it granted."

Not simple. L&M note on 10 June the Treasurer paid a fine [?] of £108 to Joseph Batelier, the owner of a house in Crutched Friars, for this purpose. “

Possibly the ‘fine’ was the premium paid to a landlord for granting a lease for a specific time. Then there would have been an annual ground rent, sometimes a small payment in cash, sometimes just a peppercorn, so the property reverted to the landlord at the end of the lease which could be for any period, sometimes as long as 999 years. An outright sale of land could require an Act of Parliament but a long lease would not.

About Sunday 18 November 1666

JayW  •  Link

Re Puzzled’s comment, I read the passage about Sir W Batten being in a huffe and thought it was because Sam had taken so long to write up the letter. Sir W Pen was tired of waiting but Sam made light (or slight) of it - maybe said his signature wasn’t that important. And the letter was not signed by Pen in the end.

About Friday 5 October 1666

JayW  •  Link

Matt Newton: Sam’s father and brother arrived on 3 October and will stay with him for a while. I expect it would have taken them 2 or 3 days to travel from Brampton.
Larry Bunce: I hadn’t noticed the phrase ‘more work cut out for me’ referred to above as it’s an idiom I’m familiar with. Given that Sam’s father was a tailor it seems possible that this was a phrase in common use in his house as Sam grew up so perhaps this is the first time it was written down?

About Monday 3 September 1666

JayW  •  Link

From John Evelyn’s account for 3 September, with thanks to Terry:
The Fire having continud all this night (if I may call that night, which was as light as day for 10 miles round about after a dreadfull manner) ... so previous annotations about sunrise and starlight wouldn’t have been relevant to what was happening during the fire.

About Friday 31 August 1666

JayW  •  Link

"...then the boy and I to the office, and there he read while I writ it fair..." Alta fossa 10 years ago asked what the boy read. He would have been reading the transcribed letter out loud from the letter book or the fair copy made with Mr Poynter’s help, and Pepys would have been carefully writing it down word for word as the final letter to be sent to Sir William Coventry, in his best handwriting. No carbon paper then!

About Saturday 25 August 1666

JayW  •  Link

Matt Newton Note from yesterday:
These presses still exist, and, according to Pepys’s wish, they are placed in the second court of Magdalene College in a room which they exactly fit, and the books are arranged in the presses just as they were when presented to the college.

There are some photos online which show large spaces between the presses, but would give you a rough idea of the space needed.