Monday 2 April 1660

Up very early, and to get all my things and my boy’s packed up. Great concourse of commanders here this morning to take leave of my Lord upon his going into the Nazeby, so that the table was full, so there dined below many commanders, and Mr. Creed, who was much troubled to hear that he could not go along with my Lord, for he had already got all his things thither, thinking to stay there, but W. Howe was very high against it, and he indeed did put him out, though everybody was glad of it. After dinner I went in one of the boats with my boy before my Lord, and made shift before night to get my cabin in pretty good order. It is but little, but very convenient, having one window to the sea and another to the deck, and a good bed. This morning comes Mr. Ed. Pickering, like a coxcomb as he always was. He tells me that the King will come in, but that Monk did resolve to have the doing of it himself, or else to hinder it.

28 Annotations

First Reading

David Bell  •  Link

From the description, it seems that Sam's cabin is in quite a good location, if possibly a little noisy. Well out of the bowels of the ship, and also close to the Admiral's quarters. Good light for writing letters, of course. With the window out over the deck he'll also be able to look up and watch the working of the crew.

Is this another thing which inspires his later career?

Eric Walla  •  Link

So Creed still thinks he is going ...

... or is it a purposeful display before M'Lord to force the question? That would certainly turn me against him, bringing all his gear onboard without any oral or written commitment to his placement.

Why would the Deputy Treasurer, as he'd been appointed, need to go to sea? Or is this another indication that the mission contains elements of a pleasure/status cruise, that everyone who WAS anyone would be in tow (with his sisters and his cousins and his aunts)?

Keith Wright  •  Link

A thumbnail sketch of Coxcomb Pickering has been added to his page.

Pauline  •  Link

"...comes Mr. Ed. Pickering, like a coxcomb as he always was."
Again the present tense "comes" to introduce someone Sam finds extraneous to the business he is about or the people he cares to meet.

Alan Bedford  •  Link

Re: Creed...

You'll recall that back on March 24, Creed tried to get a berth on Montagu's ship, but was turned down. If, as Deputy Treasurer to the Fleet, Creed is to sail, it clearly won't be with Montagu. We get the impression that he's become a joke, if William Howe can get away with putting him out.

mw  •  Link

Dear Mr Pepys Your literary style is becoming more fascinating with each entry. Not only as Pauline correctly points out your use of different tenses for different situations, but also the second sentence is quite the longest we have seen so far!
A not unusual mistake of any diarist.

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

Coxcomb - so called because licensed court jesters used to wear a strip of red cloth in their caps fringed like a cock's comb. However, the meaning is of a vain, empty-headed, shallow person, prone to brag of accomplishments that he does not really have.

Hhomeboy  •  Link

A good bed...

"... my but little, but very convenient, having one window to the sea and another to the deck, and a good bed. "

We never quite established whether Sam had had to make do with a hammock in his Swiftsure accomodations. Was the Swiftsure a double decker?

So, we know now for sure Sam can sleep in a bed aboard the Naseby--which was a good thing as Sam is perched atop this ungainly triple decker, which rolls to a much greater degree, thereby making for a lot of seasickness... swinging to and fro in a hammock would not have been a sleep aide.

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

I can only judge by sailing ships I have been on - the Victory, the Cutty Sark, and replicas of the Endeavour and the Golden Hind - but cabins for single occupants generally seemed to have small, narrow beds in them. However, my brother, an ex-able-seaman, tells me that hammocks are quite comfortable when the ship is rolling because the weight of the occupant tends to minimise the sensation of the roll.

Jackie  •  Link

I think that hammocks were only starting to come in during the 17th Century. They were picked up as an idea from the New World. Until then, sailors who didn't have their own cabins just unrolled their bedding each night as best they could and slept on a hard, moving surface.

If hammocks were becoming widespread in Pepy's time, they were still relatively new.

Alicia  •  Link

Re: "Coxcomb" amd how it came to refer to a "vain, empty-headed, shallow person, prone to brag of accomplishments that he does not really have." For those of you too urban to have been in a farmyard lately, that description fits a rooster pretty much to a T. To us countryfolk, the derivation seems obvious.

Hhomeboy  •  Link

The talkative Mr. Ed...

Pepys can't stand this Montagu/Pepys extended family, it's interesting to note Sam chose to record this rather unflattering remark about Monck...

I'm assuming Montagu himself may have said as much while they all sit tight waiting for the negotiations between Parliament/council and King to come to fruition.

Monck's recent dual control over the army and the council makes a lot of people nervous, the King included.

No one else could match Monck's power at present; should he have changed his mind (after luring the King out into the open), many believed Monck was still in a position to set any and all terms.

My own view is that Monck could have grabbed power for himself in Sept-Dec. of the previous year but that an unstoppable groundswell of support for the restoration is about to crest, a phenomenon Monck had helped spur.

Charles II is perhaps the first British monarch who will need the political negotiating skills to flatter and persuade a number of elements (ie. "estates") which emerged at the time of the revolution.

In a sense, Monck has begun to define the political role model of a succession of British prime ministers who would act as buffers between royal prerogatives and the public interest.

(The absence of someone of Monck's stature, influence and pragmatism in 1688 is one of the reasons why the House of Stuart) was shortlived.

Nix  •  Link

Charles is hardly the first monarch to have need for negotiating skill --

As I read the history, the English state at least as far back as the Magna Carta was never a fully "top-down" organization. The monarch was always in tension with, among others, the dispersed local nobility, the landed non-noble gentry, the merchant class (both in London and in the seaports), as well as periodic peasant uprisings.

Pauline  •  Link

"unflattering remark about Monck"
Hhomeboy, I was reading it as a derisive report of the kind of nonsense characteristic of know-it-all Ed.

kvk  •  Link

..did resolve to have the doing of it himself....
As I mentioned a few days ago, the recalled Parliament talked about bringing back the king in accordance with the Treaty of Newport, a treaty they had pressed on Charles I in late 1648 before the Presbyterians were purged and the king executed. Among other things, this treaty would set up a Presbyterian church system in England.

Monck isn't interested in the Newport Treaty and so has proposed his own terms to Charles. I will post more information about that in the April 4 entry.

Whether Pickering knows this, or is just making things up I do know know.

Hhomeboy  •  Link

Nix & CharlesII...

My point was that the roundhead revolution had started the process of a sweeping social reform and the creation new estates or emerging meritocratic constituencies & classes, whose interests, during the 100-year period after 1688, British Governments increasingly needed to assuage and cater to and counter-balance against the interests of the aristocrats and/or the monarch.

As the son of a king who had lost his head to radical Christian revolutionaries, Charles II at first seemingly heeded advice from Monck and others re: moderation and checks and balances.

Quite often secular, social and political issues were masked by religious red-herrings and discrimination.

The Stuarts' failure to heed the permanent changes that came about circa 1640-1650 resulted in their eventual downfall. That it took as long as it did would have surprised 'Cromwell's Earl' and other pragmatic 'royalists'.

Hhomeboy  •  Link


Charles II was even less interested in the Newport treaty's terms than Monck. Pragmatists such as Montagu knew the game at hand--placate and then coopt the Presbyterians in Parliament until a new Royalist regime is soundly in place and the King's authority has been reestablished.

One of the things being negotiated by Monck are royal undertakings not to immediately implement violent reprisals and mass arrests against thousands of puritans, republicans, levellers and former roundheads.

David Bell  •  Link

I've been trying to get a better idea of where Sam's cabin would be on the Nazeby, and looking at the pictures people have linked to. Unfortunately, most of the pictures are somewhat caricatured, with such things as over-sized cannon, and possibly some exaggeration of other features.

The pictures show the ship in her later days, re-named, and emphasise the large carvings of the Royal Arms on the stern, above the windows of the great cabin.

It seems that this great cabin is at the level of the uppermost tier of guns, and it's likely that Sam's cabin is at this level. It may be on the next deck up.

On the warships of later years, such as HMS Victory, there would be a partial deck above the gun-deck, giving room to sail the ship, but most of the gun-deck would be open to the sky. The lower gun-decks would be completely enclosed.

The paintings also show gun ports in the stern, below the level of the great cabin. They look a little odd. Warships of later times did have chasers -- cannon mounted to fire fore and aft -- but these seem too low in the hull. Readers of naval fiction will know that, for frigates at least, the stern chasers were in the great cabin, and clearing a ship for action involved stowing furniture in the hold and removing partitions. How much of this was later innovation, I wonder?

Glyn  •  Link

A large model of the Naseby is on display in the current Pepys Exhibition at the MUSEUM OF LONDON, and a very handsome ship model it is too.

David  •  Link

In all likelihood, Sam's cabin is in the wardroom. IT is likely that both ships were two-deckers or perhaps three-deckers, due to their purpose. 17th century ships were often over-decked, and carried too many guns too high over the water. A good example of this is the swedish ship Vasa, which sunk just outside of harbor due to its instability.

Jonathan Addleman  •  Link

The stern ports 'gun ports' might just be openings for loading cargo into the hold, particular for storing spare masts, since they would otherwise have to sit on the deck, getting in the way!

The Hermione, though it's a much later ship (1779) has just this feature - you can see them (open) in this picture of the reconstrution project:…

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Would the discussion of Monck above have been different had Commons' 9 March grant to him been known?

Grant to Gen. Mouck [sic].…

Mr. Weaver reports, Amendments to the Bill for settling Lands on his Excellency General George Monck, and his Heirs: Which were twice read; and, upon the Question, agreed unto.

Resolved, That this Bill be ingrossed.

jeannine  •  Link

Journal of the Earl of Sandwich; Navy Records Society, edited by R.C. Anderson
“April 2nd. Monday. I went out of the Swiftsure into the Naseby to remain there. “

Dick Wilson  •  Link

Well! My question of yesterday has been answered: They are in the Naseby, which Pepys continues to misspell.
Now I wonder where the boy will sleep: On the floor of Pepys' cabin? Sling a hammock between decks with the crew? There are plenty of spaces for boys to work aboard a warship. A 90 gun ship might require 30 or more powder monkeys, I don't know, but enough to keep all the guns supplied with powder from the magazine. A flagship would require cabin boys too, as servants, but again, there is no telling how many were aboard. Did they bunk together, or separately?

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"Well! My question of yesterday has been answered: They are in the Naseby, which Pepys continues to misspell."

Pepys is not misspelling a name he writes in shorthand for his diary. Moreover, beyond shorthand, spelling did not follow a single convention in the 17th century: Pepys spells names with a phonetic instinct and also drifts.

Third Reading

Alter Kacker  •  Link

Terry Foreman makes an excellent point — at the time of the diary nothing could be “misspelled” because the notion of a correct way to spell a word didn’t yet exist.

For an example of the value of standardized spelling, check out Michael Murphy’s free online version of The Canterbury Tales —…

This is not a translation of paraphrase of Chaucer into modern English — “The words are Chaucer’s, line for line,” Murphy explains. “Only the spelling is modernized, as it is in Shakespeare texts.” After laying it aside half a century ago, I may finally get through it! (Made it through the General Prologue and The Knight’s Tale so far.)

Jeremy Buck  •  Link

Updating Glyn's post in 2003, the model of the "Naseby" is now in the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich, London.

Mountain Man  •  Link

A relevant example of the non-standardized spelling of Pepys' time is the scholarly, unmodernized edition of John Evelyn's diary, published by Oxford. Evelyn was a highly educated and intelligent man, but his spelling is all over the place by modern standards. Just don't misspell Latin! That would get you sneers.

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