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Mary K has posted 1006 annotations/comments since 9 March 2007.

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About Sunday 20 May 1666

Mary K  •  Link

Has Samuel encountered another "out of hours" customer at Betty Martin's Westminster place today? Sunday observance regulations with regard to day-to-day activities were not relaxed after the Commonwealth period, so Betty's normal drapery business can hardly have been open to trade today and I suspect Samuel would have mentioned having encountered another man at her premises if that had been the case. Perhaps she has been a little too free (boastful?) about mentioning others of her gentleman customers and this has displeased him. If she gossips about them perhaps she gossips about him, too.

About Vest

Mary K  •  Link

Anyone who is able to watch BBC 4 at 20.30h this evening (3rd January 2018) could see a team of tailors, guided by fashion historian Amber Butchart, re-creating a suit of clothes typical of one worn by Charles II.

About Mingo (Sir William Batten's servant)

Mary K  •  Link

Mingo's Hart Street antecedents.

Mingo was by no means the first black African to live in the parish of St. Olave's Hart Street.

John Barker, a merchant and MP living in the parish from about 1582 onwards, had in his employ in the later years of the 16th Century a number of African servants including Mary Fillis (a young girl described as a "Morisco"), George (a blackamore) and Leying Mouea ("a blackamore of 20 years). Alderman Paul Bayning, a Hart Street neighbour of the Baker family, employed at least 5 Africans over the same period including "three maids, blackamores" (one called Julyanne) and two men - Abell and Anthony.

Dr. Hector Nunes, a refugee from the Portuguese Inquisition resident in the neighbourhood since 1549, had numerous black servants in his household including three women named Elizabeth, Grace and Mary.

Altogether between 1588 and 1638 St. Olave's Hart Street saw three baptisms and 12 burials of Africans, whilst the neighbouring church of St. Botolph's Aldgate saw just one baptism (of the aforementioned Mary Fillis) but 17 burials of Africans.

For further information, see the book "Black Tudors" cited in the note that precedes this one.

About Tuesday 1 November 1664

Mary K  •  Link

Oyster barrels.

For discussion of oyster barrels, go to the Encyclopedia (food), where is it suggested that these were small barrels (tubs) about 7 - 13 inches high. Not so very different in size from the pint and half-pint pots that shrimp, cockles etc. used to be sold in in 20th Century England. You bought such shellfish by volume, not by weight.

An additional wrinkle to the oysters is that they were often transported and sold as pickled shellfish in pre-20th Century days when they still offered a cheap snack or meal.

About Mingo (Sir William Batten's servant)

Mary K  •  Link

For a fascinating account of the surprisingly long history of free men and women of African origin living and working in England, see the following recently published book:

"Black Tudors" by Miranda Kaufmann.
A Oneworld book
ISBN 978-1-78607-184-2

About Tuesday 22 October 1661

Mary K  •  Link

"looking is your choice"

Well, that's not quite fair comment when the nub of the spoiler falls under the same glance as the warning. In this case one does not have to follow the link actively to know what the outcome will be. Many (most?) of us register at least part of the text of two contiguous lines of print at the same time.