Annotations and comments

Tonyel has posted 267 annotations/comments since 11 March 2013.

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Third Reading

About Wednesday 9 May 1660

Tonyel  •  Link

Sounds like a typical bar room scam to me - let the mark win the first game and then ' Oh bad luck old chap! Double or quits?'

About Monday 23 April 1660

Tonyel  •  Link

For anyone who can get BBC programmes, may I recommend 'The Alehouse Sessions' which appeared on BBC4 last night and which, presumably, will now be found on BBC I-player.
A very jolly group of Scandinavian and British folk musicians playing music from Cromwell's time through to the Restoration including dances, songs, reels, jigs and sea shanties but also from Playford's The English Dancing Master and several pieces by Purcell.
It's easy to imagine Sam, William Howe and even My Lord entertaining the assembled company with their fiddles and a glass near at hand.

About Thursday 19 April 1660

Tonyel  •  Link

Thanks SDS and EtB, I'd forgotten Sam's move and have also experienced soggy sleeping quarters on a boat. I stand corrected.

About Thursday 19 April 1660

Tonyel  •  Link

Bed wetting. Sam's windows had been broken by the enthusiastic firing of cannon salutes and, presumably, could not be re-glazed at sea. I would have thought he would have had them covered up by now but maybe they were the only source of ventilation in a small, smelly cabin.

About Saturday 14 April 1660

Tonyel  •  Link

Does anyone know what happened to Joan who slept in for Lambert? I would imagine such a blatant act would have been a hanging offence.

About Wednesday 11 April 1660

Tonyel  •  Link

'I ate a good breakfast'
'The wind all this day was very high, so that a gentleman that was at dinner... was forced to rise from table'

Touch of smugness from Old Seadog Sam, observing someone else's 'squeamishness'

About Friday 23 March 1659/60

Tonyel  •  Link

Slight spoiler?
Shelston's production of his pretty wife for inspection by Sam will be repeated by others as a slightly sinister 'bribe' as he becomes more powerful and his weaknesses become better known.

Second Reading

About Thursday 6 May 1669

Tonyel  •  Link

"my eyes being bad with writing my journal, part of it, to-night."

Sam seems clear that the problems with his eyes are due to too little or, occasionally, too much light yet he persists in writing his journal by candle-light instead of during the day. I wonder why - it's not as though he has a 9 to 5 job.

About Tuesday 4 May 1669

Tonyel  •  Link

"I sent the coachman to her lodging, and understand she is gone for Greenwich to one Marys’s"

I'm always interested in the minor practicalities of life in Sam's day. Can't imagine a modern cabbie leaving his car in the care of a passenger to run a discreet errand. I wonder if there was some sort of clamp to stop this lustful knave stealing both coach and horses...

About Sunday 25 April 1669

Tonyel  •  Link

A splendid invention Stephane !
I wonder why Google never thought of something similar.

About Wednesday 31 March 1669

Tonyel  •  Link

Regertz, delighted to learn that you are still hovering in the background. Are you planning a third trip around, Phil permitting?

About Sunday 28 February 1668/69

Tonyel  •  Link

It is to have the Captains to account for all stores and victuals;

I get a hint of Sir Humphrey Appleby here: "Stores and victuals are a great burden on the Navy Office and we may need extra staff in due course, but - take it away? Let the captains handle it? Oh no, of course we can deal with it....."

About Wednesday 17 February 1668/69

Tonyel  •  Link

Can't help visualising Sam as played by Buster Keaton:

'Business, business, off to see Pedley - oh!' Sharp left turn into alley, but empty, 180 degree turn, back to Court - 'ah, there she is!' another 180 degree turn, 'Madam, allow me .......'
'Blast! there's the boy! another 180 degree turn..... And so on.

About Wednesday 13 January 1668/69

Tonyel  •  Link

SDS, I think the reference to Lady Peterborough is a red herring, i.e. it should be read as
"and so home, and there by invitation find Mr Povy, etc.

I wonder if Sam's vagueness about the play is due to his excitement about another piece of technical kit being delivered for him to play with?

About Tuesday 12 January 1668/69

Tonyel  •  Link

Arabella was only 15 when she became James's mistress. She was ousted when he took up with Catherine Sedley in 1679.

How different from the lives of our own dear royal family - oh, perhaps not.....

About Thursday 31 December 1668

Tonyel  •  Link

Best wishes from grey and wet Somerset UK to all the Sam & Bess fans. This has been my second trip through part of their lives and, Phil permitting, I'll probably go round again. Tales of lust, ambition, corruption, incompetence in high places - so different from our well-ordered lives today!

About Saturday 12 December 1668

Tonyel  •  Link

"I hear this day that there is fallen down a new house, not quite finished, in Lumbard Street...."

Probably just due to ignorance - up to this time the main skills required for town houses were masonry or joinery. Freestanding brick walls must have been 'new-fangled' to the majority of builders who, in my experience, are a fairly conservative bunch.

About Wednesday 9 December 1668

Tonyel  •  Link

"we away to Hercules Pillars, and there eat a bit of meat: and so, with all speed, back to the Duke of York’s house"

Ah, the new coach syndrome..... "Open her up coachman, let's see what she''ll do!"

About Monday 7 December 1668

Tonyel  •  Link

"so as the King called him Visionaire,"

Anyone else get an image of a slightly shabby TV repair shop?

About Monday 30 November 1668

Tonyel  •  Link

Today we might say she "christened" the coach as a light-hearted reference to making use of something for the first time. Sam's equivalent reflects the blunter attitudes of his time.

I'm rather surprised that there has been no mention of the new coachman - I imagine Sam would have carried out some careful interviewing before entrusting him with his coach - and his wife.