Sunday 7 July 1661

(Lord’s day). In the morning my father and I walked in the garden and read the will; where, though he gives me nothing at present till my father’s death, or at least very little, yet I am glad to see that he hath done so well for us, all, and well to the rest of his kindred. After that done, we went about getting things, as ribbands and gloves, ready for the burial. Which in the afternoon was done; where, it being Sunday, all people far and near come in; and in the greatest disorder that ever I saw, we made shift to serve them what we had of wine and other things; and then to carry him to the church, where Mr. Taylor buried him, and Mr. Turners preached a funerall sermon, where he spoke not particularly of him anything, but that he was one so well known for his honesty, that it spoke for itself above all that he could say for it. And so made a very good sermon.

Home with some of the company who supped there, and things being quiet, at night to bed.


7 Jul 2004, 11:32 p.m. - A. De Araujo

"till my father's death" Martha Washington is said to have stipulated that all her slaves were to be set free when she died, she is said to have become paranoic,afraid she was going to be poisoned. I dont think SP would do any such a thing but knowing him like we do I dont think he would go out of his way to prolong his father's life

8 Jul 2004, 1:39 a.m. - Louis

Surely this is the uncle's will that Pepys was waiting till "tomorrow" to read, in yesterday's entry? But will the actual state of the estate be commensurate with the promises made in the will?

8 Jul 2004, 2:03 a.m. - Jesse

"he gives me nothing at present till my father's death” This is interesting given Nix’s annotation yesterday that “some forms of property can pass ONLY by inheritance, … even if there is a valid will purporting to give it to someone else.” Perhaps this was the only way property could be passed to Sam, bypassing his father who’s what, holding it in the meantime?

8 Jul 2004, 2:18 a.m. - Stolzi

"Home with some of the company" I would suppose that "home" after the funeral means "back to Uncle Robert's house" - not back to Pepys' own house in London.

8 Jul 2004, 4:13 a.m. - vicente

"...preached a funerall sermon, where he spoke not particularly of him anything, but that he was one so well known for his honesty, that it spoke for itself above all that he could say for it. And so made a very good sermon...." Honest but "dull?". No little homilies about this and that. No mention of the Captain coming home from the wars, or saving someone from the raging waters of the Ouse.[Local River]or walking on stilts thru the drains getting away from a raging bull? For many of us the dispatch column will barely have a date. For those who would like to be remembered : Publish,Publish, Publish[leave a cd]. The supper was at the house, no Poste House be open, to get a nag back to town. 'Tis the Parsons day, Sunday.

8 Jul 2004, 7:36 a.m. - Mary

"he hath done so well for us all" Uncle Robert seems to have made a judicious will. It looks as if Sam's father is to enjoy income from the estate during his own lifetime and that thereafter the income and property devised will pass to Sam himself. No mention of the widow. One wonders whether she thought that her late husband had 'done so well to the rest of his kindred' and hopes that she was at least granted right of abode in the house itself for her own lifetime.

8 Jul 2004, 9:05 a.m. - Xjy

"he hath done so well for us all" Mary: “No mention of the widow. One wonders whether she thought that her late husband had "done so well to the rest of his kindred" and hopes that she was at least granted right of abode in the house itself for her own lifetime.” Oh, Mary! A good widow wants to throw herself into the grave or on to the pyre with her late master :-)

8 Jul 2004, 10:04 a.m. - Robert Gertz

Following on the suggestion that Sam won't look to prolong Dad's life...I think it might be hard on Sam to suggest he's not a sincerely loving son, however grubby his behavior towards his clearly admiring uncle Robert has been.

8 Jul 2004, 10:51 a.m. - Pedro.

"till my father's death" I think Sam would look on this as a long-term investment, and would be happy for his father to keep stewardship. Sam would know by now that there is plenty of money to be made at the Admiralty.

8 Jul 2004, 11:28 a.m. - PHE

Dog eat dog We should recognise that Sam was living in a more 'dog-eat-dog' world where making it in life was highly reliant on luck and taking your opportunities when you could, rather than on simple merit and hard work. 'Luck and opportunity' included nepotism (Sam and Sandwich), marrying into wealth, and inheritance. Of course, in Sam's case he (unusually for the times) included his own merit and graft to make the best of the luck and opportunities that came his way.

8 Jul 2004, 11:31 a.m. - Pedro.

No mention of the widow. It is hard to find much about the aunt, but one interesting entry on the 31 Jan, after Mrs.P had returned after looking after the aunt.. "Thence to my father's to see my mother, who is pretty well after her journey from Brampton. She tells me my aunt is pretty well, yet cannot live long. My uncle pretty well too, and she believes would marry again were my aunt dead, which God forbid.” http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1661/01/31/ This may suggest that all is not right in the marriage?

8 Jul 2004, 11:32 a.m. - Ruben

Xjy: Anne was Richard Trice widow, before the marriage to R. Pepys in 1630. So she will inherit from Mr. Trice or not at all. Trice children (by her) will not inherit Pepys properties. This was very clear before the marriage in 1630. Property is not going to slip away from family. Robert is only the temporal bearer of the Pepys properties. Now that he is dead, his will complies with the mores accepted by everyone and confirmed by the Law. I think that Robert wanted the properties to go to Samuel, because he had a wonderful carrier and he saw in him, not only the son he did not have, but also the standard bearer of the Pepys name. Samuel and his father are proceeding in the just and proper way of their time. Do not judge them by XXI century laws, or better yet, do not judge them at all. The widow will receive her due, I am sure of that, because the Pepys could not afford to go against the mores of their time. What would Montagu think of him if he conducted himself in a disgusting way?

8 Jul 2004, 11:59 a.m. - Ruben

"O tempora, o mores". I do not remember who wrote that, but I think it does not need translation.

8 Jul 2004, 12:10 p.m. - Ruben

Was it Cicero? It sounds like something to say,not to write...

8 Jul 2004, 1:23 p.m. - John Seal

Was it Cicero? Yes. Cicero's 1st Catilinarian. [2]

8 Jul 2004, 1:37 p.m. - A. Hamilton

Ruben, Many thanks for your note to Xjy. Clarity is achieved. In the 1940s comic strip "Barnaby and Mr. O'Malley," about a little boy and his imaginary fairy godfather, a flying little man, the godfather decides to run for Congress under the slogan, "O Tempora! O Mores! O'Malley!"

8 Jul 2004, 2:23 p.m. - gerry

L&M have a lengthy notation about the will. The will of Robert Pepys (dated 12-15 Aug. 1657)and proved 23 Aug. 1661 is extant. The house at Brampton,together with the greater part of the estate, was left to Pepys's father,and was after his death to pass to Pepys, who was also to have an annuity of ₤30(after debts and legacies were paid) during the lifetime of his uncle, Thomas Pepys. This was to be increased, after TP's death ,to a half interest in the estate. There were legacies to most of the deceased's relatives, except his wife. Pepys and his father were appointed executors. Pepys gained his half-interest on his uncles death in 1676, and full possession on his fathers death in 1680.He then made over the house and profits to his sister Paulina who enjoyed them until her death in 1689. The funeral costs, together with apothecary's bills came to ₤80.

8 Jul 2004, 4:02 p.m. - JWB

O,tempora! O, mores! O,semper idem! "The funeral costs, together with apothecary's bills came to ₤80." That comes to ~7400 GBP or 14,000 USD.

8 Jul 2004, 6:35 p.m. - David A. Smith

"though he gives me nothing at present till my father's death” Regarding A. de Araujo’s comment above: “I dont think he would go out of his way to prolong his father's life” Sir, you have impugned the honour of a man who, being dead, cannot be libeled but also has no means of defending himself. Sir, you may choose between pistols or swords to answer for the grievous insult you have done this site’s humble narrator …

8 Jul 2004, 7:56 p.m. - Glyn

especially as Pepys' father lived for almost another twenty years.

8 Jul 2004, 8:26 p.m. - Pedro.

"There were legacies to most of the deceased's relatives, except his wife. No wonder she was in a “most nasty ugly pickle” yesterday. Not being a blood relative, and the weakest link, will she have to leave with nothing?

8 Jul 2004, 9:02 p.m. - Jenny Doughty

I thought widows were entitled to a third of the value of the estate?

8 Jul 2004, 10:32 p.m. - JWB

Will You can purchase a copy of Uncle Robert's will from the Nat'l Archives for 3.50 GBP. Here's the link: http://www.documentsonline.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details-result.aspre's

8 Jul 2004, 10:40 p.m. - JWB

Will Sorry, above link doesn't play out. Goto http://www.catalogue.nationalarchives.gov.uk and fill in the form.

8 Jul 2004, 10:57 p.m. - dirk

Some remarks... Women were on the whole worse off in the 17th c. (and even later than that...) than men, so let's not judge the fact that the widow gets very little out of the will too harshly. On the other hand this puts a moral (if not legal) obligation on men to take care of these socially and legally weaker beings: noblesse oblige! I agree with Xjy that Pepys will see to it that she will be able to live decently for the rest of her life. I don't know about 17th c. legislation to that respect, but it would be a point of honor for Sam ("pundonor"). "We should recognise that Sam was living in a more 'dog-eat-dog' world" - re PHE Are you quite sure about this? Ever been in a situation where a (not even so)large inheritance is to be divided between familiy members, who *up to then* used to be on friendly terms with each other? "Homo homini lupus" (tr. Man is a wolf to men.) might be a fair description! If anything, I think our modern world is more 'dog-eat-dog" than Sam's...

8 Jul 2004, 11:10 p.m. - Bradford

As Gerry has noted above---and as will be further revealed when Sam makes his catch-up entry on the 13th---the will, the promises, and the estate are a pig in a poke; and as readers of the Diary, we shall not see the end of it. Sam probably wondered if he ever would.

8 Jul 2004, 11:12 p.m. - RexLeo

It looks like as per the annotations on the aunt, that she died in Oct. 1661 - rather shortly after Robert P. Was she broken hearted or simply broken or her illness caught up with her?

9 Jul 2004, 3:24 a.m. - john lauer

JWB: http://www.documentsonline.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details-result.asp With the last 4 characters removed it becomes a proper url.

9 Jul 2004, 4:24 a.m. - Pauline

"knowing him like [**]we[**] do I dont think he would go out of his way to prolong his father's life” Careful with the pronouns and assuming a tight joint reading going on here!! Count me out of this “we”.

9 Jul 2004, 2:11 p.m. - Scav

Count me out on that **we** as well. I'll happily be David's second to defend Sam's honour! Besides, not that long ago, Sam'l was trying to manage a way to "lay something out for" his father (see June 3 http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1661/06/03/ ). Having him provided for in this manner should be, bluntly, a benefit.

9 Jul 2004, 4:09 p.m. - Ruben

Scav: Lets meet at the London Dungeons at 0400 in a moonless night. I am sure that a long queue of readers will be disposed to stand in line in defense of Sam's honour! Considering Sam's tastes, I thing he would choose swords of the kind the French call brochette or may be a Turkish Kebab. The one who gulps the most and the fastest is the winner!

9 Jul 2004, 7:33 p.m. - PHE

dirk eat dog I appreciate what you say dirk, but what I am suggesting is that it was far more difficult to gain status in the world simply on merit. Today (in Western countries) we are far closer to living in a meritocracy (though an imperfect one). In 17th century England (and in many non-Western countries today), your status and wealth were much more dependent on your social class and any 'lucky' connections or opportunities, as already stated. You had far less opportunity to improve your situation simply through hardwork, etc. I don't think we should blame Sam for appearing too ruthless with regards to his eagerness to see the will. Yes, families still fall out over wills, but I doubt its any more than at anytime in the past.

8 Jul 2014, 4:30 p.m. - Bill

An online copy of the "Will of Robert Pepys of Brampton, Huntingdonshire" can be ordered, as of July 2014, for £3.30 at: http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/Details?uri=D838643

10 Sep 2017, 1:42 a.m. - Terry Foreman

Pedro: "There were legacies to most of the deceased's relatives, except his wife...she...Not being a blood relative, and the weakest link, will she have to leave with nothing?" Would Uncle Robert's widow, Anne, have been looked after by a brother, had she one?

12 Feb 2021, 5:53 p.m. - Terry Foreman

"we made shift to serve them what we had of wine and other things;" L&M: The funeral costs, together with the apothecary's bills, came to £80 (or, according to another account, £95): PL (unoff.), Freshfield MSS, nos. 8 and 9.