Wednesday 2 May 1660

In the morning at a breakfast of radishes at the Purser’s cabin. After that to writing till dinner. At which time comes Dunne from London, with letters that tell us the welcome news of the Parliament’s votes yesterday, which will be remembered for the happiest May-day that hath been many a year to England.

The King’s letter was read in the House, wherein he submits himself and all things to them, as to an Act of Oblivion to all,1 unless they shall please to except any, as to the confirming of the sales of the King’s and Church lands, if they see good.

The House upon reading the letter, ordered 50,000l. to be forthwith provided to send to His Majesty for his present supply; and a committee chosen to return an answer of thanks to His Majesty for his gracious letter; and that the letter be kept among the records of the Parliament; and in all this not so much as one No. So that Luke Robinson himself stood up and made a recantation for what he had done, and promises to be a loyal subject to his Prince for the time to come.

The City of London have put a Declaration, wherein they do disclaim their owing any other government but that of a King, Lords, and Commons. Thanks was given by the House to Sir John Greenville, one of the bedchamber to the King, who brought the letter, and they continued bare all the time it was reading.

Upon notice made from the Lords to the Commons, of their desire that the Commons would join with them in their vote for King, Lords, and Commons; the Commons did concur and voted that all books whatever that are out against the Government of King, Lords, and Commons, should be brought into the House and burned.

Great joy all yesterday at London, and at night more bonfires than ever, and ringing of bells, and drinking of the King’s health upon their knees in the streets, which methinks is a little too much. But every body seems to be very joyfull in the business, insomuch that our sea- commanders now begin to say so too, which a week ago they would not do.2 And our seamen, as many as had money or credit for drink, did do nothing else this evening.

This day came Mr. North (Sir Dudley North’s son) on board, to spend a little time here, which my Lord was a little troubled at, but he seems to be a fine gentleman, and at night did play his part exceeding well at first sight.

After musique I went up to the Captain’s Cabin with him and Lieutenant Ferrers, who came hither to-day from London to bring this news to my Lord, and after a bottle of wine we all to bed.

22 Annotations

WKW  •  Link

"In the morning at a breakfast of radishes": vegetables at last. Perhaps the morning draught helped wash them down.
The whole question of fresh produce has been fruitfully surveyed on this "Food and Drink" Background Page:

Paul Brewster  •  Link

L&M's title for the City of London's Declaration
"A declaration and and vindication of the Lord Mayor, alderman and commons of the city of London in common-councell assembled"

vk  •  Link

Note that the Declaration of Breda and the letter to the Commons are two separate documents. I quoted part of the letter (which is not available on-line) in the April 4 entry, and mentioned that there were actually several letters sent - I think Montague has one.

Also note that, as I pointed out before, the Declaration of Breda was just a parroting-back of the conditions Monck asked for.

One of the big issues at the moment is: who exactly is going to be executed once the King is restored? All of the regicides? Just the more prominent ones? Propagandists for the regicides (among the most notable of whom is poet John Milton)? The King conspicuously fails to answer that question, and that's going to be something Parliament wrestles with in a couple of weeks.

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

'and they continued bare all the time it was reading' - One hopes it was just their heads that were bare...

vincent  •  Link

"..And our seamen, as many as had money or credit for drink,.. "
Money problems>> Oh well..

Larry Bunce  •  Link

"The City of London have put a Declaration" I see that Pepys is using the modern British practice of using plural verbs with institutions. At times he uses expressions still used in the southern U.S., such as 'carrying' someone someplace, where we would say 'taking' today. Was this usage common in England and America in the 1600's, or is the shorthand symbol involved the same for any form of 'to have,' so that the spelling is the editor's?

Emilio  •  Link

"which methinks is a little too much"
I think our Sam can only say this since he's been in the center of events and has been getting strong hints for weeks now. Perhaps all the hubbub is beginning to seem a bit undignified as well, now that he's among the powerful and in his finest clothes.
The intoxication of it all (the clothes as well as the beer) is probably also why he hasn't mentioned Elizabeth in a while, which Ann noted yesterday.

Glyn  •  Link

which methinks is a little too much

I think it's more that it seems undignified for people to do this. At this point in time, the English (especially the Londoners) had a bad reputation with the French and the rest of continental Europe for being amazingly disrespectful to their "social superiors". Probably because in France you could be executed for arguing with your "betters", not just King Louis but with noblemen as well. But here, a Londoner was more likely to throw a brick at someone he disliked rather than fawn upon him.

So for someone to get down on their knees to drink a toast, seems to Pepys to be theatrical and unnatural. (He may change his mind in later years, I don't know.)

Hhomeboy  •  Link

re: VK's post...

Much mention has been made of Monck's demands forming the backbone of the Breda proclamation...and no doubt the King had been acquiescing to many of Monck's suggestions (eg. Monck's secret warning letter to the King to leave Spanish controlled territory before initiating the final, formal stages of restoration negotiations).

Although Grenville has received credit as the key emissary who facilitated bringing Montagu and others onside, it would be remiss not to to give all due credit to Charles II 's closest advisor, most able loyalist and strategist--Edward Hyde, soon to be elevated as Clarendon.

Both the letter to Parliament (florid flattery) and the Breda document reflect Hyde's own beliefs in mediation and true moderation.

Monck was a blunt instrument and expected huge paybacks...his manipulation of council and blatant election fixing resulted in an ugly Cavalier majority in parliament, which, true to form, became cavalier in adhering to the spirit and subtsance of Breda--starting with the regicide revenge motif...unfortunately, as we shall see, the able Hyde--who, unlike Monck, had the brains and the breeding of a true statesman but alas not the political cunning-- became the Cavaliers' whipping boy and eventually Cahrles' convenient scapegoat.

BTW, Hyde also authored the authoritative contemporary account of the Civil War(s)...had Sam been a bit older and his diary had commenced during what was the first decade of his life, putative online annotators would have had to cite Hyde's lengthy history/memoirs on frequent occasions...I find Chris Hill's work, Milton's prose and Hyde's history to be the three most authoritative interpretative tools in understanding the miltary/political strife and intellectual/social upheaval which preceded the Stuart counter-reformation.

Here's a succinct biographical info. page on Hyde from the Columbia encyclopaedia:

vk  •  Link

Hhomeboy, I don't have the text of Grenville's message from Monck to compare to the Declaration, but according to a footnote in a John Morrill article, R. Hutton has demonstrated (on pages 106-9 of The Restoration) that the Declaration simply repeats what the Grenville message has asked for.

Hyde did believe in moderation, and he did help draft Breda, but that alone does not demonstrate that it embodies his own ideas. If you've got a copy of Clarendon (I do not), you can cite it and see what he says about the events of early April.

According to Morrill, Breda is going to become irrelevant anyway, since Parliament is going to make the King's return pretty much unconditional. (But that's getting a week ahead of our story.)

Hhomeboy  •  Link


I sold my mint condition first-state deluxe Hyde civil war set (History of the Rebellion, standard ed., 6 vol., 1888) several yrs ago at auction when antiquarian prices were sky-high...and am now looking for an intact, reasonably priced reading-set...

Please be advised that Hyde's memoirs (1857) are distinct from his 6 volume history.

Hyde's stamp is all over the Breda document, which formulates a statesman-like delicate balance. My own untutored opinion of the letter to parliament is that it is a subversive political tool designed to temporarily blunt, mollify, flatter and assuage various parliamentary factions and the military rank and file--thereby encouraging/promoting populist goodwill--and to undermine sundry republican voices, Stuart sceptics (of which there were still legions) and religious/regional forces and parties...under the rubric of " peace, order and good gov't "by 'graciously' proffering the prospect of 'saintly' forgiveness and magisterial leniency to those INDIVIDUALS who retract and repent (re: 'treason', disloyalty, dissent, regicide).

My view is that Hyde had long promulgated such heartfelt assurances of religious and political tolerance but was not responsible for the text of the letters, which are palpably insincere.

...moreover, the letters were quite successful in promoting reciprocal excesses of insincerity--eg.'laid-on' expressions of fealty--both en masse (hence the incongruous kneeling outbreaks all over the restored Maypole celebrations, as chronicled by a dismayed Pepys, who must have been reflecting his Lord's vocal disdain) and on the part of erstwhile plotters antagonistic to unfettered Royal privileges: eg. Manchester's fulsome public grovels.

TLD  •  Link

"...peace, order and good government."

Was keyed by Hhomeboy's annotation today on today's letter to the Commons which linked to Hyde with the phrase, "peace, order and good government." While a citizen in good standing of the former colonies futher south (sorry for the spoiler), I did at one point in my schooling take a class on regional political affairs from a Canadian Military officer who went over a comparison and contrast of the Canadian Consitution and the more enthusiastic constitution we use down here. Did some backchecking and see that the Canadian Consitution, Article 91 does indeed include the same phrase, "peace, order and good government." Not that should be a surprise to Canadians as it appears to be a basic school level civics learning objective for them.

All this makes me curious. Does this all relate somehow to the changes we're watching unfolding with our Sam today. Would assume it does. Do other Common Wealth members use similar expresssions of government control in their Consitutional philosophy?

Hhomeboy  •  Link

'Peace, order and good gov't...

Unlike the U.S. ('melting pot') credo of 'E pluribus unum' (Out of many, one)...the British North America Act's foundation phrase "POAGG" (not to be confused with 'The Pogues' or the Br. Navy's 'Rum, Sodomy and the lash') is a seminal concept of the Victorian era British empire.

It was certainly used in Australia circa 1834 and became the governing principle of British colonialism and 19th & 20th century neo-colonialism and post-colonial 'British' territories and emerging states. You will find it in constitutional and legislative acts from Nigeria to it's not a 'Canadian' construct but rather a totemic phrase for the export and inculcation of British parliamentary concepts and values.

If anyone can trace its first-use (or authorship) in British parliamentary history, I would be much obliged.

N.B. I doubt the phrase had been conceived or coined in Clarendon's era but may have been used prior to the American revolution a century hence...then again, maybe it was used in the heyday of the Roman Empire.

vicente  •  Link

Parliaments: Letter and Declaration from the King. [to read in full at this site]
The House being informed, "That there was a Gentleman, Sir John Greenvill, in the Lobby, and had a Letter to deliver to this House from the King:"
The House thereupon was adjourned during Pleasure; and the Speaker was appointed to go to the Lower End of this House, and receive it at the Hands of the Messenger.
The House being resumed;
The Speaker reported, "That Sir John Greenvill delivered to him a Letter, which he said he received from the King his Master, to deliver to the House of Peers."
The House commanded the said Letter, with a Declaration inclosed therein, to be read Twice; which was accordingly done, as follows; videlicet,
The real guts....the piece that made it possible...
".....And We do further Declare, That We will be ready to consent to any Act or Acts of Parliament to the Purposes asoresaid, and for the full Satisfaction of all Arrears due to the Officers and Soldiers of the Army under the Command of General Monck; and that they shall be received into Our Service upon as good Pay and Conditions as they now enjoy....."

From: British History Online
Source: House of Lords Journal Volume 11: 1 May 1660. House of Lords Journal Volume 11, ().
Date: 29/05/2004

cgs  •  Link

'uman knees? this time
"...and drinking of the King’s health upon their knees in the streets, which methinks is a little too much..."

Bill  •  Link

"This gracious Message, with the Letter to his Excellencie, and the Declaration, were read in the House of Commons, with most extraordinary Ceremony and Reverence, as if some strange awe had seized upon the minds of the Parliament; every man at the Speakers naming of the King rising up and uncovering himself, desiring the Letters might be forthwith read; the like also was done in the House of Lords; In the House of Commons, remarkable was that of Mr. Luke Robinson, who being a great Commonwealths-man, first of all spoke to the Letters, and acknowledged his conviction.
"This was seconded by the Navy under the General Montague, now Earl of Sandwich, to whom (and the Fleet under him) the King had sent the like Letters and Declaration; the Sea ringing with the peals of Ordnance, upon the communication of the said Papers."

---A Chronicle of the Late Intestine War in the Three Kingdoms of England, Scotland and Ireland. James Heath, John Phillips, 1676

Dick Wilson  •  Link

"The House ... ordered 50,000 L to be forthwith provided His Majesty for his present supply;"
How did they transfer large sums of money? I suspect that in this case, gold coins to the value of 50,000 pounds were put into a strong box, and, with two or more special messengers commanding a substantial guard force, were sent off the King. Does anyone have any clearer information? It was kind of them to give Charles some pocket-money.

"all books whatever that are out against the Government of King, Lords, and Commons, should be brought into the House and burned."
That could make for a very warm House of Commons. There must be many such publications, enough for several large bonfires. Maybe they meant a symbolic burning of a few in the House? At any rate, you cannot burn an idea. They knew that, so they must have been acting symbolically.

"And our seamen, as many as had money or credit for drink, did do nothing else this evening."
I suspect that Pepys means Naval Officers, not common seamen. The latter would have had neither cash nor credit. I also suspect that if the Parliament had decided to reestablish a republic and abolish kings, the seamen with money or credit would have drunk it, anyway. After all, tars will be tars.

Gillian Bagwell  •  Link

Dick - A delegation from Parliament went to Charles at The Hague, bringing him a portmanteau with 4000L in gold as "earnest" (down payment of) the rest. Can't cite you a source at the moment (maybe even Pepys later?) but it's documented and I wrote that scene in my novel "The September Queen" (UK title "The King's Mistress"), about Jane Lane, who helped Charles escape after the Battle of Worcester.

Dick Wilson  •  Link

Thanks Gillian. During twelve years of exile, a King can run up a bar tab that is truly regal!

Ivan  •  Link

Mr Pepys writes that Mr North [Sir Dudley North's son] came on board the Naseby " to spend a little time here, which my Lord was a little troubled at".

Does anyone know why Mountagu was troubled by this arrival?

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"This day came Mr. North (Sir Dudley North’s son) on board, to spend a little time here, which my Lord was a little troubled at, but he seems to be a fine gentleman, and at night did play his part exceeding well at first sight."

North was a relative by marriage (he had married Anne Montagu daughter of Sir Charles Montagu) and had been a member of the Long Parliament, with which Mountagu had been at definite odds. Perhaps that is it, but clearly their relationship was a long and many-layered one.

As for North's sight-reading, L&M note he came from a musical family.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"The City of London have put a Declaration, wherein they do disclaim their owing any other government but that of a King, Lords, and Commons."

Fortunately this Declaration is now an Early English Book Online; unfortunately its text is not [yet] freely available to be browsed (go to a library):

A declaration and vindication of the Lord Mayor, aldermen and commons of the City of London in Common-councell assembled. Ordered at a Common-Councel holden in the chamber of the Guild-hall of the City of London the 30 day of April 1660. that this declaration and vindication be forthwith printed and published. Sadler. City of London (England). Court of Common Council. [London]: Printed by James Flesher, printer to the Honourable City of London, 1660.…

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