Thursday 29 March 1660

We lie still a little below Gravesend.

At night Mr. Sheply returned from London, and told us of several elections for the next Parliament. That the King’s effigies was new making to be set up in the Exchange again.

This evening was a great whispering of some of the Vice-Admiral’s captains that they were dissatisfied, and did intend to fight themselves, to oppose the General. But it was soon hushed, and the Vice-Admiral did wholly deny any such thing, and protested to stand by the General.

At night Mr. Sheply, W. Howe, and I supped in my cabin. So up to the Master’s cabin, where we sat talking, and then to bed.

22 Annotations

First Reading

language hat  •  Link

"the King's effigies":
"Effigy" had a wider meaning in the 17th century: any 'likeness, portrait, or image.'

Brian  •  Link

Effigy would probably mean a statue in this instance.

kvk  •  Link

The effigies
These were the images of Charles I that were taken down in 1649. A statue was removed and a Latin inscription saying 'The King has left' was painted over the niche. You'll recall that Monck ordered the inscription painted over on March 16 (see the footnote attached to that entry). I don't know if there were any other images. Many statues of Charles I were destroyed, so I don't know if 'new making' means recasting the statues or making new plans to return statues that were hidden. Some statues were buried in order to hide them from Cromwell and co.

mary  •  Link

No wonder that Mountagu took firm action

yesterday in holding the loudly royalist Mr Banes; he must fear that this whole, southern stretch of the Thames Estuary may be turning into a maelstrom of conflicting factional currents.

Michiel van der Leeuw  •  Link

Effigies of Charles I

I've heard a story that there had been a large bronze statue of Charles I in London, that had been taken away by order of Parliament and given (or sold) to a smith to be melted down. This smith earned a living the next years by selling parts of the statue as relics to Royalists, and furthermore managed to "conjure up" the whole statue after the Restoration!

Roger Miller  •  Link

The statue of Charles I that wasn't melted down is by Hubert Le Soeur and dates from 1638. It is believed to be the first statue of an English King on horseback. Cromwell ordered it to be destroyed but was concealed by John Rivett who buried it in his garden. At the restoration Rivett sold the statue to Charles II and it was re-erected at the site where the regicides were executed, facing down White Hall towards the Banqueting House outside which Charles I was beheaded in 1649.

The location of the statue is now in Trafalgar Square and there are some pictures here:…

Hhomeboy  •  Link

Was this a threatened mutiny?

"...This evening was a great whispering of some of the Vice- Admiral’s captains that they were dissatisfied, and did intend to fight themselves, to oppose the General. But it was soon hushed, and the Vice- Admiral did wholly deny any such thing, and protested to stand by the General...."

Anyone care to parse and explain the reasons behind the purported dissatisfaction amongst the serving officers? Were the sailours also troubled? Or did this have something to do with political appointees being given commissions and/or payment arrears?

Hhomeboy  •  Link

" stand by the General...."

Monck or Montagu?

helena murphy  •  Link

An effigy of Charles II may be seen today in the crypt of Westminster Abbey in London along with those of other monarchs. It is a lifesize figure dressed in the clothes of the period. The relevance of this move to reinstate the effigy of the king in the Exchange is of paramount significance considering the time and the turning of events. It is indicative of the merchant oligarchy of London's support and willingness for the return of the king,the new symbol of the nation's stability, a return to the old order of the episcopal Church of England, The House of Lords and a Parliament elected on the traditional franchise.Without this stability England cannot lay the foundations of its future empire in the east, establish the Bank of England and grow from being a European power to a world power.

michael f vincent  •  Link

"effigy" Every revolution/counter revolution needs symbols. The only way to tell the illiterate who is officially in charge. For data of illiteracy see Liza Picard Restoration London p.197

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

'concealed by John Rivett who buried it in his garden' - must have been a bloody great big hole in a very large garden. I've seen this statue, and it is not small! I'd love to know how he managed to dig a hole that size discreetly and unobserved.

john lauer  •  Link

Jenny, could it be help from those famous London fogs? And a very large garden would have very distant neighbors.

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

Londoners don't have very large gardens unless they're the Queen! A London garden can be 20 feet wide by sixty feet long, or even smaller, and I don't think it was that different even in the 17th century. Smog may be an explanation - Evelyn wrote of 'the horrid smoake which obscures our Church and makes our palaces look old, which fouls our cloth and corrupts the Waters, so as the very rain, and refreshing Dews which fall in the several Seasons, precipitate to impure vapour, which with its black and tenacious quality, spots, contaminates whatever is exposed to it.'

Grahamt  •  Link

Hiding equestrian statues in London:
John Rivett was a brazier, and as such would have a large yard/garden for casting of statues and smelting brass and bronze. He would probably also have a workforce to help with the task as a single man could not manhandle a large bronze statue probably weighing several tons. The plinth that the statue now stands on was created separately and was possibly not buried, making the task slightly less daunting, but still impressive.

erik spaans  •  Link

The equestrian statue of Charles I by Hubert le Sueur apparently was intended for a site at Roehampton. It was never placed there, however. The question how John Rivett moved and / or hid the statue is somewhat beside the point since in all probability the statue was sold to Rivett to be melted down. Therefore there was no need for secrecy whatsoever. Once Rivett had the statue in his possession it wouldn't have been too hard to hide it. If my information is correct, the statue was re-erected near Charing Cross sometime around 1675. However Westminster Hall seems even more likely as a location.

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Equestrian statue of Charles I, Charing Cross, London, is a work by the French sculptor Hubert Le Sueur, probably cast in 1633. Charing Cross is used to define the centre of London and a plaque by the statue indicates that road signage distances are measured from this point.[2] The statue faces down Whitehall towards Charles I's place of execution at Banqueting House.…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"This evening was a great whispering of some of the Vice- Admiral’s captains that they were dissatisfied, and did intend to fight themselves, to oppose the General. But it was soon hushed, and the Vice- Admiral did wholly deny any such thing, and protested to stand by the General."

L&M note several captains were soon relieved of their commissions:

Third Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"But Moumtagu's defeated friends were both, by his influence, elected elsewhere"

That means they ran in two places, so as to have a Plan B! Sounds like a good idea in this case. That explains how people were elected in two places at the same time, and we read that they chose to represent city X and city Y had to elect someone else. What a system!

Stephane Chenard  •  Link

"The King's effigies (...) in the Exchange" were likely multiple, but included the one which popped into the news lately, when a mysterious painter whitewashed the "Exit Tyrannus" inscription that had defaced it.

We return to this episode, having now seen the weekly dispatch sent on March 26 by Venetian ambassador Giavarina. The record ain't complete till Giavarina's weekly cable is perused; in this case it adds to other accounts that "two hours before night some daring fellow (...) after washing and cleaning the statue of Queen Elizabeth did the same to that of King James and then washed ever the place of King Charles with several colours, obliterating the inscription completely"; also that "everyone admires the daring and determination of this fellow as he did it all without a mask or other disguise, from which it is concluded that he acted by order and with substantial backing". We suspected as much; also that this was still an act of "daring and determination" in London's unsettled state.

"Two hours before night" corroborates the Mercurius Politicus on the event's timing (5 o'clock, as we recall) but leaves hanging Sam's report of this having taken place "at noon". Or is "noon" any hour in daytime, or in the afternoon?

Background on all these royal statues: Giavarina helpfully explains to the Doge and Senate that "in the city of London in an open public place are statues of all the kings of England in a row, from Edward the Confessor, erected by the city itself on the day of their coronation. (fn. 9) That of King Charles was removed and broken in pieces by order of parliament the day his head was cut off". The Stationery Office compiler of Giavarina's reports (found at…) chimes in with a footnote: "The royal statues were in the quadrangle of the Royal Exchange built by Gresham, placed in niches, immediately above the cloister or colonnade. They were all destroyed in the Great Fire [in 1666]. Wheatley and Cunningham: London, Past and Present, Vol. iii, page 183."

And so, the inscription now covered (and in "several colours"!) there is indeed a statue to replace. But apparently the iconoclasts who went after Charles' statues in 1649 had left his predecessors unmolested; future revolutionaries in France and Russia will be far more thorough in wiping the slate clean.

Stephane Chenard  •  Link

Ah, the painter again. It just gets better with this letter, from Gen. Edward Massey MP to Edward Hyde, soon to be lord chancellor, dated March 16: The painter "was assisted by some soldiers". Not just "a boy", as other accounts had it (…).

The letter is one of many which Mr. John Thurloe, Cromwell's old spymaster, had kept rifling after he became postmaster general; see it at…, as part of quite a motherlode.

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