Tuesday 13 March 1659/60

It rained hard and I got up early, and got to London by 8 o’clock at my Lord’s lodgings, who told me that I was to be secretary, and Creed to be deputy treasurer to the Fleet, at which I was troubled, but I could not help it. After that to my father’s to look after things, and so at my shoemaker’s and others. At night to Whitehall, where I met with Simons and Luellin at drink with them at Roberts at Whitehall. Then to the Admiralty, where I talked with Mr. Creed both the Brothers, and they were very seemingly willing and glad that I have the place since my Lord would dispose of it otherwise than to them. Home and to bed.

This day the Parliament voted all that had been done by the former Rump against the House of Lords be void, and to-night that the writs go out without any qualification. Things seem very doubtful what will be the end of all; for the Parliament seems to be strong for the King, while the soldiers do all talk against.

34 Annotations

First Reading

David Quidnunc  •  Link

Brothers: John and Richard Creed

Latham & Matthews edition renders the words this way:

" . . . where I talked with Mr. Creed, both [NOT "till"] the Brothers, and they were very seemingly willing and glad . . . "

-- The "till" in the older version makes no sense and must be someone's mistake.
-- The brothers are John and Richard Creed.
-- That odd capital "B" in "Brothers" is also in the L&M edition. Wild speculation: The capital "B" is an indication he's intimidated by them, but capital letters were sprinkled all over the place back then.
-- In modern times, the phrase "both the Brothers" would be punctuated by dash marks, not mere commas, to reflect the jolting shift -- or perhaps this was some 17th century usage. Or maybe Pepys had already written "John Creed" and didn't want to cross the name out (in which case he could just as easily written "and his brother"). Maybe the writing style (the jolting nature of it or the possible mistake or both) reflects the tension Pepys must be feeling about the situation with the Creeds.
-- That "seemingly willing and glad" shows he's not sure how sincere they are (who would be?). He must've been watching them like a hawk.

Keith Wright  •  Link

Click "Luellin" link for biographical blurb.

Mary  •  Link

Mr. Creed, both the Brothers.

There's no great disjunction here, if you mentally supply "indeed" or "in fact" before "both". It's Mr. John who is of primary concern to Sam, but both brothers happen to be present when he calls at the Admiralty.

Richard Creed was a clerk to the Admiralty Committee from c.1653 according to L&M and served as the Admiral's secretary and Deputy Treasurer to the fleet 1657-60 approx.

KVK  •  Link

"all that had been done by the former Rump against the House of Lords"

Specifically: on February 6, 1649 (one week after the King's execution), the Rump declared that "the House of Peers in Parliament is useless and dangerous, and ought to be abolished."

On March 19 it issued the following Act abolishing the upper House:


The Lords were abolished only because they refused to cooperate with the Rump in bringing the King to trial. They unanimously rejected the January 1 Ordinance that arranged a trial for the King, and so the Commons, who were determined to try the king, declared themselves sufficient to manage affairs of state on their own. This made the Lords superfluous, and it was only a matter of time before they were formally dismissed.

At the time the House of Lords was dismissed, there were only twelve lords left sitting in it. The rest had abandoned Parliament over the previous seven years.

Hhomeboy  •  Link

"... Things seem very doubtful what will be the end of all; for the Parliament seems to be strong for the King, while the soldiers do all talk against."

So Sam's got butterflies and the city is semi-chaotic and awash with soldiers acting like riff-raff...hence the need to stash Elizabeth well out-of-town...

Also, were the King's return mission-- on which Sam is embarking under Montagu--to fail, Sam must have feared that as Montagu's official secretary, he might end up being pursued or hunted down...Sam's must have received counsel that he should keep his wife in a safe house with no apparent associations with Montagu's or Pepys's...

j a gioia  •  Link

It rained hard and I got up early, and got to London by 8 o’clock…

the modernity of this phrase is startling. substitute ‘paris’ for ‘london’ and it sounds like something from ‘the sun also rises’. interesting how anxiety and exhaustion-both personal and social-pares our rhetoric down to essentials. one glimpses in sam’s diction a new world forming while the old one falls away.

Brian  •  Link

Up until this point it appeared as though Sam was the financier to his Lord. Now he is Secretary not Treasurer and appears quite upset. Had something happened recently to change his position?

Alan Bedford  •  Link

Brian - Sam's most recent official position was as a teller in the office of the Navy paymaster. Unofficially, he has also been an errand boy, carrying messages, paying and collecting bills, for Lord Mountagu, who is a distant relative and has served as Sam's patron in London. If I understand correctly, Mountagu got Sam his official position.

Mountagu has been appointed by Parliament to escort Charles II back to England to assume the throne. Now Sam is becoming (temporarily) Mountagu's personal secretary, which is a position that can get him favorably noticed by those in power. There is also a potential downside, as Hhomeboy noted above.

Nix  •  Link

At this point, has Parliament requested or authorized Charles' return? My impression was that it was still under negotiation, and Montague was to be part of the negotiating team (but perhaps my atttention wandered at some key point -- wouldn't be the first time!).

Glyn  •  Link

No, Nix, your attention hasn't wandered: Parliament does not have the authority to request or authorize Charles’ return, and certainly has not done so. All that it is doing is to dissolve itself and call new elections for a new Parliament.

But as Pepys writes today, the writs (for new elections) "to-night ... go out without any qualification" i.e. there is no bar on former Royalists campaigning to be elected.

You don't have to be a weatherman to know how the wind blows. So long as they don't mess things up for themselves or hold out for too hard a deal.

JonTom Kittredge  •  Link

"At which I was troubled..."
I'm still confused about why Pepys was troubled when Montagu told him he would be his secretary. Was it because
1) It was a lesser position than he hoped for, or
2) He felt he was supplanting Mr Creed, who would be offended?

Glyn  •  Link

Actually, I was misstating the position slightly. Parliament can do whatever it wants under the constitution, but in fact it has NOT so far formally had dealings with Charles. It has only agreed to arrange new elections.

Hhomeboy: "were the King’s return mission-- on which Sam is embarking under Montagu--to fail, Sam must have feared that as Montagu’s official secretary, he might end up being pursued or hunted down" Nah, don't see that myself - Sam is a very small fish at the end of a very long line. If (hopefully) Charles is not invited back, then he might lose his job because of Montagu's loss of prestige, but no more than that.

Off-hand, I can't think of any examples of wives being harassed in that proposed way, and it doesn't sound as if Elizabeth's address is any kind of a secret (certainly not a "safe house with no apparent associations with Montagu’s or Pepys’s") especially if it is only 20 miles away.

I still think that Huntsmore might be somewhere a bit nearer than that - in view of the speed that Pepys got there and back again, but really don't have any evidence either way.

Julia  •  Link

"At which I was troubled . . ."
Could Sam be concerned about Creed's coming along on the voyage? See lh's entry under Creed in the background pages: "John Creed was Pepys’s principal rival for Sandwich’s favor.”

Alan Bedford  •  Link

Thanks to Nix & Glyn for the subtle correction concerning the Parliament's current position vis a vis Charles II.

Mr. Kittredge: I think that Sam perceives that John Creed had been a little put off that Sam got the secretary position that previously belonged to him (Creed), but is somewhat mollified by the deputy treasurer position. Note Julia's post, directly above. In addition Sam seems to be taking a bit of a chance in accepting the secretary position, given that he had been in a pretty safe, non-demanding job in London. Plus, he's leaving home and family.

Both of these factors probably have contributed to his recent unease.

Glyn  •  Link

I'm as puzzled as JTK by this comment. It doesn't sound from the biographical link as if Pepys was a strong friend of John Creed's (but maybe that reflects later judgements), and this is surely a prestigious and important appointment. So is he troubled because he is taking the other Creed brother's job; or because the first Creed has got a better one than him (deputy treasurer to the whole Fleet would surely be a profitable position in a lot of ways); or is he just showing a sensitive restraint from celebrating getting his friend's job?

Hhomeboy  •  Link

Re: Creed bros...

My read is that Sam was mollifying the Creeds who were trying to make things difficult for Sam; he notes that he told them "lookit, if I don't take the secretarys' post, it will go to someone else and not to either of you--so let's be pragmatic, make the best of an unneasy situation and cooperate together for our mutual benefit and keep out any interlopers..."

Sam knows that time is on his side: he has Montagu's sympathy and ear and Creed's quite pronounced religious views are not going to stand him in good stead with Montagu in the near future.

As for Sam being a small fry, that may be so, but he has been a very visible go-between for Crewe/Montagu/Downing (and may have also been pasing messages between Crewe/Thurlow and Downing, who is already plotting the arrest of regicides, performing royalist counterintgelligence and spying on the Dutch, whom Montagu will have to deal with militarily)...and if army elements or republicans pulled off another coup, they would likely arrest or hold hostage any and all Royalist 'spies and plotters' they could get their hands on...

Our Sam is about to embark on a great adventure with enormous future possibilities for personal gain, social enhancement and position....Btw, as Montagu's secretary, Sam will deal directly with the King's retinue, including Charles' brother....

Pauline  •  Link

"At which I was troubled . . ."
I’m puzzled too. This from the Tomalin biography: “Now Creed lost his job to Pepys. There was nothing wrong with Creed’s abilities, only his politics and religion. He was known as a committed puritan, while he elder brother Richard was an important commonwealth official….So the name of Creed would have been a liability to Montagu, while Pepy’s discretion, personal loyalty and open-mindedness recommended him.”

Maybe he is thinking that it is easier to take over someone’s job if that person doesn’t continue in the same arena in a lesser job. Or even concerned that Creed’s “demotion” is only so he is less visible, but he will still perform some of the duties of Sam’s job. I think Sam is just indicating that he has concerns about how it will all work out.

Do we know that they’re going to pick up Charles? If so, having a puritan at Montagu’s right hand would be impolitic.

Keith Wright  •  Link

Quick remarks stolen from the Companion re:
"John Creed (d. 1701) was Pepys's principal rival for Sandwich's favour" (i.e., Montagu's). By March 1659 Creed was a secretary on Montagu's staff, and that summer accompanied him to the Baltic on business; but for this "upcoming" voyage in 1660 Montagu preferred Pepys, possibly put off by Creed's puritanism, as his pre-Restoration letters to his lord "drip with sanctimonious jargon." (p. 79)

David Quidnunc  •  Link

RE: "at which I was troubled"

L&M note referencing this sentence says that the secretary and deputy treasurer duties were usually held by one person.

The tension between Pepys and the Creeds is the obvious one that goes on in any office where one employee has been removed from some assignment that he wanted and another has been put in his place -- and both are expected to work together. All parties must either try to work together or make it look that way for the boss, and one or both parties may try to stab the other surreptitiously. Sam has every reason to be worried about the Creeds.

And his pride is probably hurt that Mountagu didn't give all of Creed's job to him, only part. He might be wondering if Mountagu thinks he's less able than Creed.

michael f vincent  •  Link

"I talked with Mr. Creed till the Brothers, and they were very seemingly willing and glad that I have the place since my Lord would dispose of it otherwise than to them."
I read this differently
1: They did not get the position (v prestigeous)
2: They still had an in with sp to the man

michael f vincent  •  Link

"at drink with them at Roberts "
on the 8th SP wrote "no strong waters for a week" -oh! well

Daniel Baker  •  Link

Sam "got to London by 8 o'clock at my Lord's lodgings." He can't mean Montagu's lodgings in Whitehall, which was in Westminster, not London. Back on the 2nd of March, 1660, he mentioned seeing Montagu at Mr. Crew's home, which was in Lincoln's Inn Fields; could that be the "lodgings" where Sam saw him today?

Mary  •  Link

Mountagu's lodgings.

Yes, but Mountagu's own lodgings in Lincoln's Inn. Do look again at the fairly full answer that I gave you a few days ago about Mountagu's various addresses during the diary period and beyond.

Daniel Baker  •  Link

Yes, I did read your earlier answer, but there you wrote that Mountagu rented his own lodgings in Lincoln's Inn Fields from 1664 onward, which is three or four years after this entry. Did he already have lodgings of his own there in 1660?

You also mentioned his lodgings in the Wardrobe from 1660 to 1668, but would he have had those lodgings before he was appointed Master of the Wardrobe in June, 1660? If not, then perhaps Mountagu is still at Mr. Crew's on this day, where he was on the 2nd, 6th, and 7th of March. On the 6th, Pepys writes of "my Lord's lodgings at Mr. Crew's," which would seem to imply that he was residing there at least part of the time.

By the way, I apologize for not thanking you earlier for your efforts to answer my questions; is it OK to write an annotation just to express personal thanks?

Mary  •  Link

My apologies, DB.

I was guilty of slipshod attention to the different dates involved.

It would be quite logical for Mountagu to be staying at Crew's house, since the man was his father-in-law and had a very large place (taxed on 20 hearths) in Lincoln's Inn Fields.

It was not until the following year that Mr. John Crew was created Baron Crew of Stene. It was also in 1661 that Crew moved house - but only to the house next door.

[As for posting personal thanks, it all depends.....we don't really have a formal protocol for that. Usually, I think, people reserve specific thanks for an annotation that throws a new and unexpected light onto a particular feature or question].

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"This day the Parliament voted all that had been done by the former Rump against the House of Lords be void,"

"More correctly," L&M note, "a committee was appointed to report on what the Rump had done concerning the Lords."

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"That odd capital "B" in "Brothers" is also in the L&M edition. Wild speculation: The capital "B" is an indication he's intimidated by them, but capital letters were sprinkled all over the place back then."


Pepys kept the diary in the standard office-shorthand (in its time like the one my secretary learned in high school). Its several editions are transcriptions: L&M note all punctuation -- except certain full stops -- are the editor's choices. A capital "B" is not Pepy's choice, but an editor's.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"This day the Parliament voted all that had been done by the former Rump against the House of Lords be void, and to-night that the writs go out without any qualification."

In fact a committee was appointed to report on what the Rump had done about the House of Lords http://www.british-history.ac.uk/…

Prospective M.P. qualifications were reaffirmed , but a motion to exclude royalists was now defeated http://www.british-history.ac.uk/…

Third Reading

LKvM  •  Link

Re Samuel's relationship to "my lord" --

As has been mentioned before, I think, Sam's great-aunt Paulina Pepys married Edward Montagu's ("my lord's) father, Sydney Montagu.
Sam was therefore "my lord" Edward Montagu's first cousin once removed.
Considering what short lives people had in those times, first cousin once removed is not really a terribly remote relationship.
They were cousins.

Ensign Tom  •  Link

“… at which I was troubled, but I could not help it.”

By the time Pepys writes this diary entry, he has already met with the Creed brothers at the Admiralty on the evening of March 13th after having been informed by Lord Montagu earlier that morning that he is to have the secretary’s position while John Creed is to be deputy treasurer to the Fleet. It’s a small point and perhaps not even worth making, but I wonder if Pepys’ “troubled” mind and conflicted emotions at his appointment are the combined effects of his meeting with Lord Montagu and the Creeds and not just with his lordship alone.

The conversation with the Creeds could not have been comfortable for Pepys. No matter how easy and affable the brothers might have been towards him on the surface, the underlying message Pepys received would have been, “There are two of us and only one of you.” Moreover, both Pepys and the Creeds would have known from previous experience that the upcoming mission to Holland would entail spending weeks aboard 17th century sailing vessels where everyone lived cheek-by-jowl with their shipmates and where privacy was almost unknown. Under such conditions, Pepys would have been all too aware that any scuttlebutt about his job performance as secretary to Lord Montagu, for good or ill, would inevitably find its way back to the Creeds for them to exploit for their own benefit as they saw fit.

I also wonder if Pepys was apprehensive that John Creed might use his position as deputy treasurer to the Fleet to tarnish his reputation; for example, by casting doubts about the legitimacy of any of Pepys’ expenses or otherwise spreading rumours that Pepys was guilty of questionable financial practices.

Another reason for the Creeds’ ingratiating manner towards Pepys could be that they themselves might have had skeletons in their closet dating from their earlier service under Lord Montagu, skeletons that they now feared Pepys would unearth as soon as he started familiarizing himself with Lord Montagu’s files. Perhaps the Creeds were worried that among this paperwork Pepys might find evidence that they had sometimes been guilty of shady dealings and ungodly efforts at self-aggrandizement. By being so “very seemingly and willingly glad” that Pepys was now the new secretary, the Creeds might have been trying to placate him and co-opt him into their own way of doing milord’s business, or at least encourage him to keep their peccadillos under his hat and adopt the 17th century policy equivalent of “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.”

No wonder Pepys could not help feeling troubled. He has his new appointment as Lord Montagu’s secretary and the Creeds do not seem to begrudge him his good fortune in the least, but his gut instinct is telling him to be on his guard.

Stephane Chenard  •  Link

So, is Sam concerned about the wife's security if left on her own in chaotic London? He may as well, given that on March 12 (March 1st old style) Venetian ambassador Giavarina, in a particularly fascinating weekly cable (at https://www.british-history.ac.uk…) had this to report:

"The assembly [Parliament] has decided to establish a fresh militia because it is much afraid that the Anabaptists, Quakers and other very numerous and powerful sectaries, from dislike of the present parliament, entirely composed of Presbyterians and fomented by Lambert, Desbero and many other leaders of their faith, may be contemplating an insurrection. Indeed hearing of some beginnings of commotion in the North General Monch sent off some troops of horse to put it down and suppress any attempts these sectaries might try to make, who are cruel and bloody.

"There are still great numbers of them in this city, and it seems that on Sunday or Tuesday last they had planned to rise, break into the houses and kill all whom they came across. But this was foreseen and prevented by placing strong guards everywhere and by searching the houses in which sectaries might be living. In several they found arms and other warlike instruments with a quantity of knives especially designed for such wicked deeds. Some persons have been arrested and sent to the Tower."

Later in his report Giavarina notes that it's not all about politics and religion only:

"In their perplexity it has been suggested in parliament, to legitimate the coming elections, to summon the peers of the realm and get them to issue the writs in the king's name, inviting his Majesty to return to England, but with conditions and restrictions. But *to this are opposed all those who enjoy goods of the crown and bishops* [emphasis added], which are secularised, and all who had a part in the king's death, the first from the certainty of restitution and the others from fear of punishment."

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"Things seem very doubtful what will be the end of all; for the Parliament seems to be strong for the King, while the soldiers do all talk against."

They were dangerous times; fighting could have broken out at any moment.

Stephane Chenard  •  Link

Actually the Mercurius Politicus had a different take on the dreadful Anabaptist/Quaker plot for a new St. Barthelemy; says it was all overblown slander, and in Thomas Rugg's retelling,

"Now the common report cried out a great plot was intended there, said that theire was found armes enought for five thousand men; others said that all the Anabaptists were ready to rise and cut all the throats of them that weare not of theire judgment. But this is a true list of armes found in theire houses: Liut.-Col. Kiffin: two drumes, one pattisan [a kind of halberd], five old pikes, six swords; in Mallery House: three pistolls, two swords and his sons Hewlings fowling peece; Gosfrights house: three drumes, on[e] leadinge staff, one sword, and three birdinge pieces belonging' to a Dutch marchant and another frind of his; Captain Hewling: seven pikes, twelve musketts, seventeene swords".

For our purposes however, whether the plot was real, and even whether the fanaticks may have been expected to deem Sam's household "not of theire judgment" - needs not matter; the Fright was on, and Sam must have heard of it if the "common report" was so widespread. Indeed, another Rugg report dated "around march 10" says "att this time in the west country the gentry are very much afrighted, for the people called Quakers and Independents and Anabaptits and threatend to plunder, as report said, gentilmens houses and take away armes from the gentry because they stood for a free Parliment; in so much that gentilmen are forced to keep a garde in theire houses (...)"

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