Friday 3 August 1660

Up betimes this morning, and after the barber had done with me, then to the office, where I and Sir William Pen only did meet and despatch business. At noon my wife and I by coach to Dr. Clerke’s to dinner: I was very much taken with his lady, a comely, proper woman, though not handsome; but a woman of the best language I ever heard. Here dined Mrs. Pierce and her husband.

After dinner I took leave to go to Westminster, where I was at the Privy Seal Office all day, signing things and taking money, so that I could not do as I had intended, that is to return to them and go to the Red Bull Playhouse, but I took coach and went to see whether it was done so or no, and I found it done. So I returned to Dr. Clerke’s, where I found them and my wife, and by and by took leave and went away home.

10 Annotations

First Reading

Paul Brewster  •  Link

but a woman of the best language that ever I heard any in my life
per L&M. Seems Wheatley is at it again cleaning up the syntax.

Paul Brewster  •  Link

where I and Sir W. Penn only did meet and despatch business
according to L&M: "Two were a quorum for most business."

vincent  •  Link

Barber : I wonder why he speaks of this ocassion, why? Up to now he only mentions a barber when it is special occasion:
1)first time there(twice);2) lure away the helping hand 3)try out his Cravat(I never did that) 4)trimmed when the boat is rolling- no nicks?(twice)) and another , it appears he was not happy with his sbs( he does not say so but goes again 3 days later to the new one, but never speak ill of your barber else it could be blood letting time as John Evelyn does mention often) .

chip  •  Link

Isn't comely a synonym of handsome? Any OED help out there is much appreciated. Honestly, when I click on one of the links and read all the wonderful annotations (Paul, David, Glyn, Vincent, Phil, etc. etc.), just thanks for your efforts. Incidentally, Vincent, I noticed too that he seems to like his new barber. Maybe he (the barber) comes to the house now!

Mary  •  Link


Whilst this word can mean pretty, fair, etc. in this instance it seems to fall into OED senses 2 and 3, which are glossed 'pleasing, agreeable, nice to the senses or feelings in general; becoming, decent, proper, seemly, decorous.' Even the application to purely physical beauty seems to have acquired the nuances of a quiet, sober beauty, which pleased the eye but did not excite the senses, by the late 16th Century.

Sam Sampson  •  Link

"Two were a quorum..."?
Paul, that only works when one is away sick!

Alan Bedford  •  Link

"Two were a quorum"?
Hardly surprising. There were three Naval Commissioners, of whom, Penn was actually the experienced Navy man, Pett ran the shipyard, and the third, Lord Berkeley, was not very active. See Pauline’s notation (quoting Tomalin) of 13 July 2003 at:…

vincent  •  Link

"...where I was at the Privy Seal Office all day, signing things and taking money, so that I could not do as I had intended, that is to return to them and go to the Red Bull Playhouse, but I took coach and went to see whether it was done so or no, and I found it done ..."
I do love the way that is written. "poor" thing did not get to the play on time, does that not ring a few bells for those busy execs doing their thing?

Second Reading

Bryan  •  Link

Alan Bedford's post above is a little misleading. The Navy Board consisted of four principal officers (treasurer, comptroller, surveyor and clerk of the acts) in addition to the three commissioners.

Third Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Seems I underestimated the immediacy of the Admiralty, Navy Board and Sandwich meeting a few days ago. Yesterday in the House of Commons:

Navy Debts.
Mr. Holles reports the State of the Debts upon the Navy, as it was represented to his Majesty Yesterday at the Council Board; and that, among other Inconveniences lying upon the Navy,
Twenty-four Ships do lie in Harbour at Wages and Victual, through Want of Money to pay them off; which amounts to Ninety-four thousand Pounds;
by the not Payment whereof, there is a growing Charge of about Sixteen thousand Pounds monthly.

Navy and Army Debts.
Ordered, That it be referred to a Committee to examine the Debts of the Navy and Army, and other publick Debts of the Kingdom, which concern the Parliament in Honour and Justice to take care of; and to state the same,

and report them to this House; viz. to Mr. Pryn, Sir George Browne, Col. Birch, Sir John Northcot, Mr. Annesley, Lord Angier, Mr. Powell, Mr. Swinfin, Mr. Sprey, Mr. Holles, Sir John Bowyer, Sir Anth. Irby, Sir Wm. Doyley, Sir Anth. Aucher, Mr. Ellison, Mr. Dowdeswell, Sir Solomon Swale, Sir Anth. Ashley Cooper, Lord Kildare, Mr. Secretary Morris, Sir Richard Browne, Sir John Lowther, Mr. Culliford, Mr. Rainsford, Mr. Mallet, Sir John Clobery, Sir John Holland, Mr. Elliot, Mr. Grove, Mr. Boderda, Mr. Reames, Sir John Marsham, Col. West, Mr. Lowther, Sir Edward Turner, Mr. Ennis, Colonel King, Mr. Knight, Sir John Carter, Mr. Clifford, Sir Wm. Lewis, Sir John Temple, Mr. Bampfeild, Mr. Whitehead, Col. Jones, Mr. Goodyeare, Sir John Dawney, Mr. Powell, Sir Wilfrid Lawson, Mr. Charlton, Mr. Henley, or any Five of them:
And all the Merchants, Members of this House, are of this Committee: And they are to meet in the Afternoon in the Queen's Court; and so de die in diem: And Col. Birch is to take care of it: And with Power to send for Accompts, Master Rolls, Persons, Papers, Witnesses, and what else may conduce to this Business.


So they are not waiting for the Chancellor to sort out the Supply revenues. They have declared an emergency.…

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