Friday 8 June 1660

Out early, took horses at Deale. I troubled much with the King’s gittar, and Fairbrother, the rogue that I intrusted with the carrying of it on foot, whom I thought I had lost.

Col. Dixwell’s horse taken by a soldier and delivered to my Lord, and by him to me to carry to London.

Came to Canterbury, dined there. I saw the minster and the remains of Becket’s tomb. To Sittingborne and Rochester. At Chatham and Rochester the ships and bridge.

Mr. Hetly’s mistake about dinner.

Come to Gravesend. A good handsome wench I kissed, the first that I have seen a great while.

Supped with my Lord, drank late below with Penrose, the Captain. To bed late, having first laid out all my things against to-morrow to put myself in a walking garb. Weary and hot to bed to Mr. Moore.

33 Annotations

First Reading

Colin Gravois  •  Link

Well, the horse is smelling the stable, as goes an old English saying, and with London beckoning, Sam is chomping at the bit and getting back in the saddle, so to speak, with the wenches. Now back to reality, what's the reference to drinking below (decks??) and to the captain, aren't they on the road? Pls can someone parse.

Paul Brewster  •  Link

drank late below with Penrose, the Captain
L&M Companion identifies him(?) as Capt. Thomas Penrose "A captain in the Commonwealth navy, he held two commands 1665-7. He was arrested for debt in 1660, and Conventry's comment on him c. 1667 was 'grows debuached'."

I suspect that below is now in reference to the inn they were staying at and not a shipboard term of art.

Judith Boles  •  Link

Is there an estimate of the miles that would have been traveled on this day?

Alan Bedford  •  Link

Judith asked: "Is there an estimate of the miles that would have been traveled on this day?"

The distance would have been roughtly 75 air miles, or more. Canterbury was the first town of any size. I imagine that the roads would have not been arrow-straight, so it was probably a long, uncomfortable ride.

David Bell  •  Link

The day's journey, on the current roads, from Deal to Gravesend, is 60 miles, according to Autoroute. From Canterbury onwards this follows the modern A2, one of the English roads which, apart from new bypass sections around towns and villages, is pretty much unchanged in line since the days of the Romans.

This is certainly a pretty direct route on the map. There's no great diversion anywhere.

Compare the distances to Sam's trip to Cambridge. It isn't so different.

From Gravesend, Sam will enter London along the Old Kent Road, famed in song.

vincent  •  Link

On monday 24/ june 1650 : J Evelyn by coach left Dover at 4 am for Canterbury then on to Gravesend dining at Sittinburne arriving late at Gravesend then on to Depford arriving 4 am next morning. He did it again by horse on 29th of feb 1652? Dover,Canterbury,Sittenburne Rocheste nextday To Gravesend then by pair of Oares to Says Court.
One site did say mileage (today 2003) 44.4 miles Gravesend to Dover: Gravesend to London Bridge 23 miles:
For the ambitious try the bicycle 2 day trip from the Cutty Sark(Greenwich) to Dover :

Matthew  •  Link

Inn or ship?
The reference to "Penrose, the Captain", rather than "Captain Penrose", seems to indicate that he went on board ship when he got to Gravesend. The entry is quite sketchy so it is likely to omit such details.

Paul Brewster  •  Link

Inn or ship?
One of the reasons that lead me to believe that "below" refers to an inn is a sentence from tomorrow's entry: "Paid the house and by boats to London, six boats." Yes, I cheated and looked ahead.

M.Stolzenbach  •  Link

"Mr. Hetly's mistake"

One has to wonder what it was.

"To bed to Mr. Moore" points to the old custom of sharing beds; as he is weary and hot, Sam probably wishes he had the whole bed to himself.

Notice that seeing "the minster and ... Becket's tomb" is rather tourism than pilgrimage.

helena murphy  •  Link

In this era the dining area in an inn was often upstairs, or the guests would request supper in their rooms upstairs.In 1651, Charles II and Henry Wilmot, later Lord Rochester stayed at The George in Brighton just before Charles set sail for the continent and into exile. In the given accounts of the escape,the dining room is clearly situated upstairs. The locals or the revellers would have drunk downstairs. Often travellers would just stop at an inn still on horseback for bread and beer, a sort of 17th century take away.

Ollard,Richard. The Escape of Charles II. Hodder& Stoughton 1966

JonTom Kittredge  •  Link

For those who are confused (as I was), "minster" is not a misspelling of minister, but a term meaning (according to "a monastery church, often used even when the monastery no longer exists." Here it refers to Canterbury Cathedral, presumably.

gerry  •  Link

Re jontom's annotation if you click the map in the Sittingbourne anno. you will see the town of Minster-in Sheppey. The abbey there, still a going concern, originally dates from the 7th century.

Glyn  •  Link

From which I guess that JonTom K is not in England: "Minster" isn't that an uncommon a name. The most famous nowadays would be York Minster, but let's also not forget "Westminster".

Glyn  •  Link

and Fairbrother, the rogue

Samuel doesn't really consider Fairbrother to be a rogue: he's just exasperated with him. Not only did he NOT take responsibility for the King's guitar, but he also managed to get himself lost as well, leaving Samuel to find him and do the job himself when he's got enough to do already.

Incidentally, we've met Mr Fairbrother before: he's the man who wrote the god-awful verses back in February (I wonder if they helped get him this job?).…

ML Bobryk  •  Link

What is "the King's gittar?" Was the guitar known in England at this time? If so, I'm guessing that the hard shell case has not yet made its appearance - Is Sam having trouble keeping it from hard knocks as he travels?

Kevin Peter  •  Link

"A good handsome wench I kissed"

I wonder what the story behind this could have been? I wonder what Sam was like when socializing with women. It's too bad there isn't any more detail.

Colin Gravois  •  Link

Isn't he wonderful, though, stealing a kiss at any opportunity and not bashful to tell all about it. Suspect he practicing up for London!!!

Second Reading

Bill  •  Link

"I troubled much with the King’s gittar"

The anthem, "They that go down to the sea in ships," was likewise owing to a singular accident. It was composed at the request of Mr. Gostling, subdean of St. Paul's, who, being at sea with the king and the duke of York, and in great danger of being cast away, providentially escaped. This Mr. Gostling often had the honour of singing with Charles II. the duke of York accompanying them on the guitar: not anthems, however, as may easily be supposed; for it no where appears, that Charles II. considered music in any other view than as an incentive to mirth.
---A new and general biographical dictionary. W. Owen, 1784.

arby  •  Link

This entry seems to be notes to remind himself, to be elaborated on later, especially the "Mr. Hetley's mistake about dinner." Reminds me of the entries much later when he goes touring around Stonehenge and his old stomping grounds.

Tonyel  •  Link

A good handsome wench I kissed, the first that I have seen a great while.

According to a recent BBCTV programme on manners in Elizabethan times, if a caller at a strange house was met at the door by a young woman he should kiss her firmly on the lips.
Sam seems to have taken full advantage of this custom. Somehow the chorus of Rich Hall's love song comes to mind: 'Some people call it stalking.'

AndreaLouise Hanover  •  Link

A good handsome wench I kissed, the first that I have seen a great while - not even seen his wife yet and kissing .....

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"Came to Canterbury...I saw the minster and the remains of Becket’s tomb."

Both the shrine (1220) and the old tomb (1170-1220) of Archbishop Becket had been destroyed at the Reformation. All that Pepys can have seen is there still -- the worn hollows around the site of the tomb made by the feet of pilgrins, in the Trinity Chapel. (Per L&M footnote)

Here are images of more than Pepys saw: the cathedral, simulations of Becket's tomb and a roughly contemporary view of the cathedral by Hollar.…'s+tomb

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"At Chatham and Rochester the ships and bridge."

The greatest ships of the navy were at Chatham. The stone bridge over the Medway at Rochester (built c. 1392; rebuilt end 15th century; pulled down 1856) was generally held to be the most remarkable of English bridges. It had 11 arches and was 560 feet long. (Per L&M note)

Terry Foreman  •  Link

On the evening of 28 May the greatest ships of the navy had been reviewed at Chatham by the King.

Rochester Bridge in Rochester, Medway was for centuries the lowest fixed crossing of the River Medway in South East England. There have been several generations of bridge at this spot. A stone bridge was built by Sir John de Cobham and Sir Robert Knolles (or Knollys), finished in 1391. It had 11 arches and a total length of 570 feet (170 m) [7] It was 14 feet (4.3 m) wide. [1] To ensure the maintenance of their new bridge, the two men instituted the Wardens and Commonalty of Rochester Bridge, two elected wardens were appointed with permission from Richard II to own land and use the income for the bridge.…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"I troubled much with the King’s gittar,"

L&M: The guitar, easier to play than the lute, was coming into favour, especially among the English upper classes.

Third Reading

MartinVT  •  Link

Can we assume that the King left his guitar on board the ship, and now Sam is supposed to deliver it to him in London, but today almost lost track of Fairbrother, the fellow he engaged to carry the thing?

MartinVT  •  Link

Aha. Here is the skinny on the gittar:…

It was a baroque guitar, a little different from the standard instrument today. Charles purchased it in Paris a few months ago and was quite a guitar enthusiast. And apparently, indeed his axe got left behind and Pepys was put in charge of it.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Meanwhile in Commons in Westminster

King appoints to be attended.
Mr. Hollis makes Report that, according to the Order of this House, his Majesty had been attended by himself, and some other Members of this House, with the Resolves of this House of Yesterday, declaring that their Laying hold of his Majesty's Grace and Favour, expressed in his Majesty's gracious Letters and Declaration; which Resolves were read unto his Majesty; and that his Majesty hath appointed to give a Meeting to this House in the Banquetting House at Whitehall, at Three of the Clock this Afternoon, concerning that Business.…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

And in Lords this day - 6/8/1600

House to wait on the King, to thank Him for His Declaration.
ORDERED, That this whole House in a Body shall wait upon His Majesty, to give Him humble Thanks, for His Gracious Favour and Offer of Pardon in His Majesty's Declaration; and to let His Majesty know, that the Peers humbly accept thereof: And the Lord Chamberlain is appointed by the House presently to wait upon His Majesty, to know what Time His Majesty will please to appoint for this House to wait upon Him.…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Bill's post "The anthem, "They that go down to the sea in ships,"...." takes us away from Pepys's text of the day and toward a very deep theme of it:

Psalm 107:23-31 KJV
They that go down to the sea in ships, That do business in great waters; These see the works of the LORD, And his wonders in the deep. For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, Which lifteth up the waves thereof.…

Bill didn't link us to the anthem's website; for so early an anthem there are these:

Henry Purcell - They That Go Down to the Sea in Ships - 1685…

Euroclydon An Anthem - They that go down to the Sea in Ships…

James Morgan  •  Link

For the curious, Google Maps says the bicycle trip from Greenwich to Dover would be 7 hours and 13 minutes for 77 miles. That's going straight through, and Google assumes a brisk pace.

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