Sunday 4 November 1660

(Lord’s day). In the morn to our own church, where Mr. Mills did begin to nibble at the Common Prayer, by saying “Glory be to the Father, &c.” after he had read the two psalms; but the people had been so little used to it, that they could not tell what to answer. This declaration of the King’s do give the Presbyterians some satisfaction, and a pretence to read the Common Prayer, which they would not do before because of their former preaching against it.

After dinner to Westminster, where I went to my Lord’s, and having spoke with him, I went to the Abbey, where the first time that ever I heard the organs in a cathedral! Thence to my Lord’s, where I found Mr. Pierce, the surgeon, and with him and Mr. Sheply, in our way calling at the Bell to see the seven Flanders mares that my Lord has bought lately, where we drank several bottles of Hull ale. Much company I found to come to her, and cannot wonder at it, for she is very pretty and wanton.

Hence to my father’s, where I found my mother in greater and greater pain of the stone. I staid long and drank with them, and so home and to bed. My wife seemed very pretty to-day, it being the first time I had given her leave to wear a black patch.

42 Annotations

First Reading

David A. Smith  •  Link

"Mr. Mills did begin to nibble at the Common Prayer"
What makes Sam's diary so engaging is its combination of vividness, immediacy, and cheeky candor. And I think he is candid in part because he's fascinated by his brave new world that has such people in it, and also because during the day he must watch himself; at home, in the diary, he can fully unburden, and deliver to us the gibes and ripostes that he earlier squelched.

Elizabeth Perry  •  Link

Who is the "her" referred to in "Much company I found to come to her..." Is a sentence missing thanks to Victorian bowdlerization? I can't think he's referring either to the Bell or to the mares.

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

An interesting snippet from a website about the history of Hull (my home town) gives this brief account of the regard in which Hull ale was held in Pepys' day:

In 1622 copper farthings and tokens were coined at Hull, and candles were ordered to be hung out in the streets at night. In this year, Taylor, the "Water Poet," visited Hull, and the quaint old rhymster "took his ease" at the King's Head Inn, High Street, which still exists, and which was then the principal hostelry in the town. Taylor described his visit to Hull in a curious literary production whimsically called "A Very Merrie Wherrie - Ferrey - Voyage to Yorke for my money." The landlord of the King's Head, at that time, was George Pease, and Taylor says : -

"Thanks, to my louing host and hostess, Pease,
There, at mine inne, each night I tooke my ease;
And there I got a cantle of Hull cheese."

In a foot note the poet tells us that Hull cheese "is composed of two simples, mault and water, in one compound, and is cousin-germane to the mightest ale in England." At that time Hull was as celebrated for the manufacture of good ale as Burton-on-Trent is to-day. Ray quotes the proverb, "You has eaten some Hull cheese," as equivalent to our accusation of drunkenness. It was at this period customary for the corporation, from time to time, during the sitting of Parliament, to send its representative a present of one or two barrels of the famous Hull ale.

Peregrine Pelham, M.P. for Hull, in 1640, writing to the corporation says : - " I am much importuned for Hull ale, both by Lords and Commons, who are willing to further me in anything that concerns your towne. . . .If it please you to send me a tonne of Hull ale, and leave it to my disposeing, it will not be lost," and in another letter he tells them that the Speaker had asked for "some Hull ale."…

vincent  •  Link

How is this for a days information: " Josselyn 4.11.1660 (Sunday 4 November 1660) document 70012760
No: 4: the lords day, and a good day."

language hat  •  Link

"Much company I found to come to her..."
I second Elizabeth's request for information on this mysterious "her."

David Quidnunc  •  Link

"come to her": Mrs. Pearse

-- footnote referencing this word in L&M version of the diary says Pepys is referring to Mrs. Elizabeth Pearse.

The actual footnote is a bit confusing. It reads: "Sc. Mrs Pearse." L&M's list of abbreviations on page cxlii of Volume 1 doesn't list "sc." My Webster's New World Dictionary says the abbreviation "sc." can mean "scilicit," (a Latin contraction of "scire licit" or "it is permitted to know") meaning "namely; to wit; that is to say."

Interestingly, there's another meaning of that abbreviation: "sculpsit," which WNWD says is Latin for "he (or she) carved (it); placed after the artist's name on a sculpture, etc." But L&M isn't into tut-tutting . . .

Elizabeth Pearse's page:

Pauline  •  Link

'Much company I found to come to her'
Will a third to lh’s second force elucidation?

Is it the proprietress of The Bell?
Is it the head harem girl of a group of seven that Sandwich has imported and playfully labeled?

David Quidnunc  •  Link

"wanton" -- same meaning as today?

danE  •  Link

"where the first time that ever I heard the organs in a Cathedral" As a musician and specialist in seventeenth-century performance, this is a remarkable bit of information. it is well known that the round-heads destroyed and silenced many organs
during and after the civil war but could Sam have never have heard organ playing in church before? think of what the effect would have been!

language hat  •  Link

'wanton' - same meaning as today?
“Wanton” had quite a range of meanings (OED; the daggers indicate obsolete senses):
†1 a Of persons: Undisciplined, ungoverned; not amenable to control, unmanageable, rebellious. Of children: Naughty, unruly. Obs.wanton of word: violent or insolent in speech.
2 Lascivious, unchaste, lewd. †Also, in milder sense, given to amorous dalliance.
a of persons (in early use only of women).
3 Sportive, unrestrained in merriment.
†a Of persons: Jovial, given to broad jesting, waggish. Also, free from care.
†4 a `Spoiled’, petulant (of children); hence, self-indulgent, effeminate, luxurious.
†b Fastidious or dainty in appetite.
†5 a Of person: Insolent in triumph or prosperity; reckless of justice and humanity; merciless.
b Of cruelty, injury, insult, or neglect: Unprovoked and reckless of justice or compassion; arbitrary, gratuitous.
†c In weaker sense: Reckless of decorum.
†6 a Capricious, frivolous, giddy.
7 a Profuse in growth, luxuriant, rank.
†b Robust, overflowing with health.
†8 Unrestrained. a Of speech or imagination: Extravagant. b Of physical movement: Headlong, impetuous.

Take your pick!

Eric Walla  •  Link

Oh, lh! Taking our pick won't do!

We could travel all the way from "merry" to "lewd." While I might vote for the first (she is, after all, his friend's wife), I guess we'll have to wait for future entries to catch a closer glimpse of Mrs. Pearse.

vincent  •  Link

wanton = 2 : is my take:"...the seven Flanders mares that my Lord has bought lately, where we drank several bottles of Hull ale. Much company I found to come to her, and cannot wonder at it, for she is very pretty and wanton..."
I do think reading whats not there, that the seventh mare was the attraction. Her flanks and whithers were perfect. A good seat too: I do believe that SP did put in some double entendre? "Me Laud" needs only 6 for work; why a spare?

David Quidnunc  •  Link

Hmmmmmmm .... I pick:

One from Column Three: 3 a ("Jovial, given to broad jesting, waggish").

But (and maybe I'm just being wanton, sense 4a, but hopefully not wanton, sense 5b) maybe also with a tincture of Column Two: "lewd."

In a word, she was a flirt, maybe quite a vivacious one -- and, especially when combined with beauty, an irresistable attraction to the opposite sex even if she is married.

Remember the 24 January party at the Pearses' where the ribbons were played with (for the lewd aspect of her character may have come out) and the 26 January party hosted by the Pepys's, where "her coming so gallant that it put the two young women quite out of courage." I can just imagine it!

Tip of the hat to languagehat!

Roger Arbor  •  Link

“Glory be to the Father, &c.”... one of the 'vain repetitions' that the Presbyterians were so much against. Within a generation of course, those who had problems with the BCP and the Episcopal Anglican(with Bishops) system could leave... many did forming independent congregations.

Robert Louis Stevenson writing a long time later in 'Kidnapped' has a conversation between Alan Breck and David Balfour where the former (a Catholic of course) calls the boy, "... a fine Covenanting man". Meaningless to most today, but in RLS's day still a hot memory. The notes on Presbyterians are pretty informative...

Pauline  •  Link

...3a ('Jovial, given to broad jesting, waggish')…
And 7b (“Robust, overflowing with health”) too.

Traveling along with Sam we meet these women who appear more independent than “our Elizabeth” and who don’t seem to be left at home so often as a matter of course. While Sam puts a provocative cast on this, they are often with their husbands and seem to be considered off limits.

Beauty, force of character/personality, having her own money? Wonder what is behind this?

Mary  •  Link

The sound of the organ

Following on from danE's point, it's worth noting that the sound of a good organ resounding in a church was ( apart from cannon-fire in battle and the noise coming from a blacksmith's) the loudest sound/noise from a single source that people were ever likely to hear at this date; very impressive.

Organs were not destroyed during the Commonwealth simply because they were regarded as artistic vanities; they were also seen as a harmful distraction from the solemn business of prayer and devotion.

Grahamt  •  Link

Re: Hull.
Jenny diplomatically omits the fact that Hull was much feared by beggars in the 17th century as it was such a strict town where executions were common for minor crimes.
There was an old thieves/beggars prayer:
"From Hell, Hull and Halifax, may the Good Lord deliver us."
(This Halifax is another town in Yorkshire - not Nova Scotia)…

Andrew Hamilton  •  Link

" Is a sentence missing thanks to Victorian bowdlerization?"

The interruption in the narrative flow could suggest that something has been consciously edited out of the diary, by Pepys himself or an editor. Or is this an inadvertently given glimpse of Pepys's recent preoccupation with sex? (See yesterday's encounter with Mrs. Lane.) Is Pepys's pen taking a Joycean leap to a different level of his mind, where, by association,the presence of Mr. Pierce has occasioned a not fully conscious train of thought about his attrative wife and a fragment of this thought slips in here?

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

This is true, Graham, but we don't do it nowadays, I believe.

As background to this period, by the way, we might note that the Peregrine Pelham, MP, mentioned in my original post, is said by the website to have been mayor of Hull as well as its MP, and one of the judges of Charles I. This doesn't quite make sense to me - I thought all of them were executed.

Matthew  •  Link

"a pretence to read the Common Prayer"
Pretence here seems to mean pretext.
Andrew Marvell, the poet, was also M.P. for Hull at this time (I think that boroughs had 2 M.P.s each).

Rex Gordon  •  Link

"...all of them were executed."

About twelve of the regicides were executed. Most, however, apparently including Pelham, were pardoned by a special bill of Parliament with Charles II's approval. As for my vote on "wanton": I think it means "flirtatious", as in "full of playful allure".

Mary  •  Link

Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose

(with apologies for the lack of proper accents)

I hope we've all noticed that, much as Sam enjoys the sight and company of the very pretty and wanton lass at The Bell, his own wife requires his express permission before she is allowed to be so daring as to wear a face-patch. On August 30th she did actually try out patches ("this is the first day that ever I saw my wife wear black patches since we were married") but one might infer from this that the sight was something of a shock to Sam.

It sounds as if he had told Elizabeth to put such folderols away until such time as he decided that it was all right to wear them. Perhaps they are now becoming more fashionable in the right circles, and he no longer fears that they will make her look tarty or wanton, just very pretty.

Peter  •  Link

I'm not convinced about that it is Mrs Pearce in the Bell. I just can't get beyond the fact that Sam hasn't mentioned her up to that point. On the other hand, I can't suggest anyone else.

By the way, I would like to speak up for Mrs Pearce. I'm not sure that I see her as a flirt from the entries up to date. I do detect a critical tone directed towards Mr Lucy who often seems to be in her presence in the first few months of the diary, and not always behaving in a seemly manner. Sam doesn't seem to suggest that she is doing anything to encourage him, however. Of course there is the issue of Mrs Pearce being in bed late in the morning on a couple of occasions. However, knowing now that she gave birth in August, this means that back in February/March she was in the early stages of pregnancy and possibly suffering from morning sickness.

On another issue "Flanders Mare"... isn't this how Henry VIII referred to Anne of Cleves when he saw her in the flesh?

Glyn  •  Link

Mrs Pierce sounds like a good candidate but I suppose it could equally be the landlady or barmaid of the Bell pub (which could be the one in the Strand or one of the two Bell pubs in King Street). If this proves anything, it proves that this is a genuine diary, and the writer is accidentally omitting a half-sentence or even a paragraph as he loses his train of thought (just like every other diarist).

Glyn  •  Link

Flanders Mares
But one creature that definitely was not wanton, were the Flanders mares.

These were "heavy horses" and were some of the ancestors of the English Shire Horse. They were used to drain the fenland in East Anglia (e.g. in Little Holland) in eastern England, which is near Lord Sandwich's lands, so he is probably importing them to do heavy draft work.

But he could also be using them to pull carriages. Around this time, they were more and more used to pull Hackney carriages and other carriages:

"The Waterman's Company succeeded in keeping hackney coaches out of London for many years (unless their journeys ended at least two miles from the river), but by the Reign of Charles II, hackney coaches had become firmly established in London and the competition for passengers was fierce.
verse by John Taylor, the "Water Poet" (See Jenny Doughty's entry above) wrote:
"Carrouches, coaches, jades and FLANDERS MARES,
Do rob us of our shares, our wares, our fares,
Against the ground we stand and knock our heels,
Whilst all our profits runs away on wheels."

The above quote was found on this book site ('Invitation to a Funeral' by Molly Brown - a historical detective story). Has anyone read it? It has Samuel Pepys in a walk-on part.

Pauline  •  Link

"Much company I found to come to her...."
I don't think he is referring to Mrs. Pierce. The description (wanton) just doesn't fit for describing a friend's wife or a friend. The sentence seems to indicate the proprietress or barmaid at The Bell, or something major to its meaning has been dropped or excised.

Hic Retearivs  •  Link

Plus ça change, plus c’est la mème chose.

There, now doesn’t that feel better, Mary?

How fine it would be to be able to consult a facsimile of Sam’s entry. (A future scholar, desperate for a research topic, might bless us for maintaining a log of such mysteries.)

vincent  •  Link

Flanders Mares : great girth Not to be tussled with?
"...Beauty, force of character/personality, having her own money? Wonder what is behind this ..."

The familiar "blond" Belgian Draft horse that we see in the United States has its roots in the Brabant, also known as the Belgian Heavy Draft. This name has been shortened to Belgian for common usage.
During the Middle Ages it was known as the Flanders Horse (after the region of Europe in which it originated) and had great influence on the development of other draft horse breeds, such as the Suffolk Punch, the Clydesdale and the Shire.

The Brabant, or Belgian Heavy Draft horse, is a massive horse, powerfully built and standing between 16.2 - 17 hands. The head is comparatively small and refined, with an intelligent expression. The Belgian Draft more normally seen in the United States is not as "massive" as the Brabant, but still retains the proportions of the Brabant.

a pic too
for stamps of the brabant/flanders…

S. Spoelstra  •  Link

I bought a copy of "Moll Flanders" in a sale (American Bookshop in The Hague, Netherlands) last week. The girl behind the counter volunteered the following information: that in "those days, every woman using Flanders as a last name was certain to be a prostitute".

Which I thought was interesting. There seems to be an unexplained jump here from Flanders Mares to "her". I have not found anything to support this though. Is there a "double entendre" in Henry VIII calling his Anne van Cleve a "Flanders Mare" ?

vincent  •  Link

Men in the country side have always compared the female of the species to the equine version,[ that is pre-twiggy]. Of course now there are not too many draft horses available for reference; In my youth the Lass that pulled up a pint had to be able too handle the rambunksious stallions that came in for their dailey fodder and imbibing.
Looking at a Brabant, I can see there are many reasons for such references.
Today they would be not PC.

S.J. Spoelstra  •  Link

At the risk of being accused of P-in-C-ness and being over-sensitive in matters concerning my home country... what on earth's name is a Brabant....

Is it along is the same line as Dutch treats, Dutch Uncles, Dutchs Caps, Flanders Mares and so on ?

Please enlighten !

Jenny Doughty  •  Link

Brabant is the American name for the Belgian heavy draft horse.

Sjoerd Spoelstra  •  Link

I am quite relieved. Brabant and Flanders (Vlaanderen) are names for large parts of Belgium and Holland with a lot of agriculture. They would have had large draft horses.
The Belgian Brewery "Palm" has a Brabant horse in its label and has offered breeding bonuses (is this english ?) to encourage the breeding of the original animals.
So for Flanders Mares,have a look at…

Gar Foyer  •  Link

I don't know how tall the Brabants measured 350 yrs ago but I have had Belgian mares measuring 18.5 hands and a stallion who stood 19+ hands.

They are a steady,usually very willing (hence all the double entendres, n'est-ce pas?) handsome horse and very good breeders to boot.

Toby  •  Link

Did it occur to anyone else, with regards to who SP is describing as 'wanton and very pretty', that he might be anthropomorphising the Hull ale? Giving it the qualities of being popular, attractive, and invigorating? Or is this a literary device that SP was not likely to employ?

Vince  •  Link

"Hence to my father’s, where I found my mother in greater and greater pain of the stone." - so it looks almost certain to me that Sam inherited his own problem with bladder stones from his mother & perhaps also his mother's environment i.e. her / his preferred diet - Sam survived a dangerous operation to have his own painful bladder stone removed, fortunately the operation was first thing on a Monday & so many viruses on the reused instruments from patients on the previous Friday may well have died by the Monday - & so Sam survived where many died from operation induced infections. Sam celebrates his survival on the anniversary of the stone operation every year. Sam's problem with bladder stones was to return to him many years after finishing writing this diary.

Second Reading

ciudadmarron  •  Link

On the 8th of July Sam attended White Hall Chapel and noted that it was

"the first time that ever I remember to have heard the organs and singing-men in surplices in my life".

So it would seem that this is more correctly the first time he has heard one, as he says, "in a cathedral".
This no doubt would have been all the more impressive given the acoustics - but he has heard one before.

Rob  •  Link

Brabant is certainly NOT a part of Holland! This is as grievous an insult as calling Welshmen or a Scotsman English..... Brabant is an ancient duchy straddled on the Dutch/Belgian border whereas Holland is but a county.... Brabant together with Flanders grew very rich in the Middle Ages making the finest cloth from English wool. It is said that Richard Coeurlion gave Saladin amongst others this particular cloth as a token of his esteem...... Needless to say I am from Brabant and proud of it!

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"I went to the Abbey, where the first time that ever I heard the organs in a cathedral! "

The Abbey organ was despoiled during the Interregnum; an instrument (? the same) was "sett up" this month (Ruggw, i, f. 134r.); 'Father' Smith repaired and added to an organ there in 1666: A. Freeman, Father Smith, p. 3.
(Per L&M note)

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