Tuesday 6 August 1661

Up early and went to Mr. Phillips, but lost my labour, he lying at Huntingdon last night, so I went back again and took horse and rode thither, where I staid with Thos. Trice and Mr. Philips drinking till noon, and then Tom Trice and I to Brampton, where he to Goody Gorum’s and I home to my father, who could discern that I had been drinking, which he did never see or hear of before, so I eat a bit of dinner and went with him to Gorum’s, and there talked with Tom Trice, and then went and took horse for London, and with much ado, the ways being very bad, got to Baldwick, and there lay and had a good supper by myself. The landlady being a pretty woman, but I durst not take notice of her, her husband being there.

Before supper I went to see the church, which is a very handsome church, but I find that both here, and every where else that I come, the Quakers do still continue, and rather grow than lessen.

To bed.

32 Annotations

First Reading

daniel  •  Link

...but lost my labour...

did his day-laborer skip town or does he refer to something else?

I like the use of the very germanic "durst". durfen: german word "may". durfen: dutch "dare".

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"which he did never see or hear of before" that is hard to believe considering his morning drafts and very frequent tavern visits.

cindy b  •  Link

"but lost my labour"
I think Sam means that the “labour” of getting up early and going to see Mr. Phillips was lost since Mr. Phillips had gone to Huntingdon and wasn’t home.

Sjoerd  •  Link

who could discern that I had been drinking....

What does this mean...Sam has not been brought up to be a drinker...you can imagine father would'nt approve... but dad went along to Goody Gorum's just the same ?
Is that daddies "dependant character" or what ?

vicente  •  Link

"...but lost my labour.." It be he [my labour] that should doing the work, and he being not Mr Phillips but one one of dogs bodies that should be a cleaning up around the yard, rubbing down and finding oats etc., Most hired hands lack names even now the Kitchen help are faceless and nameless.:. Horses dinae feed themselves or rub themselves down, and Sam now ever the Gent,[esq] and dried out after he be getting a Fen soaking.
Mumsy, C of E if I do 'member. Pop most likey more puritanical[strong Fen thinking ] and not be of self indulging school, as most Puritanical thinking men do, more of the Fen thinking, because it not only a moral Issue in the Fens but also very practical one . If one is over the eight, one could be drowned in the Marshy areas and may never be found.
Sam acquired the taste for abuzzing 'ead at Coll: [note he was warned by the Tutor] but cannot pass up a good head of ale:

dirk  •  Link


Less than a century ago the old form "dorst" of the verb "durven" (to dare) was still in use in Dutch - with exactly the same meaning and syntax as sam's usage here.

vicente  •  Link

"...Before supper I went to see the church, which is a very handsome church, but I find that both here, and every where else that I come, the Quakers do still continue, and rather grow than lessen..."
see Quakers and Quakerism; Over, a pepy village and Swaverly not far away, were swarming with these out castes many enjoyed the inside of the local nik.. [that is if ye be a Royalist, [Others went to fen way park Boston?]go to America and be treated evenly. remember all these events lead to Thomas Paine and "the right to one's own opinion even if it is the wrong one" This Is Cromwell country and Republicanism, [the original not the version now in vogue]

vicente  •  Link

It is reported that Mr Pepys did issue a quote for all ages:Well attended courts were still actively managing parish business in the mid 17th century: Samuel Pepys styled the suitors in 1661 'a company of country rogues'. (Footnote 8)

From: British History Online
Source: Graveley: Local government. A History of the County of Cambridge and the Isle of Ely: Volume IX, A. P. M. Wright & C. P. Lewis (Editors) (1989).
URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/…
Date: 07/08/2004
Copyright 2003 University of London & History of Parliament Trust

Mary  •  Link

"lost my labout"

Cindy B's interpretation is the correct one. Sam's labour (the effort of early rising and walking to Phillips's house in Brampton) was all for nothing because Phillips was away from home. Sam is not complaining about the absence of some common drudge.

Mary  •  Link

"who could discern that I had been drinking"

The normal morning draft of small beer would not have counted as drinking in any pejorative sense. What Father Pepys can both see and hear (Sam's words) here is that Sam has indulged in a lengthy morning session with a glass or a tankard in his hand.

vicente  •  Link

Baldock 25 mile approx. from the house, Poor horse it be wore out.
Durst: cannot find it in an it a Webster : could have sworn I used to hear it often but? [blue moons ago] I wonder if it be in Fowlers. I durst not find it [otherwise i will be in shock].

Mary  •  Link

I durst not

OED lists 'durst' as an archaic form of the past tense of 'dare'. However, it was certainly in common use in the 1940s and 1950s in parts of NW Kent, though I haven't heard it much in more recent years.

Larry Bunce  •  Link

The word survived in America into the 20th century, in the backwoods areas.
The word also appears in the form dursen't

Mary  •  Link


Apologies; I should have made it plain that this form of the verb was used in both present and past tenses in informal speech. Larry's citation of 'dursen't' is also confirmed as being in use in the mid-20th century, NW Kent.

Ruben  •  Link

from an olde and famous book (I do not have the name of the editor or the publishing year):

ACTS 7:32 [Saying], I [am] the God of thy fathers, the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. Then Moses trembled, and durst not behold.

And in "The New American Standard Bible" (ed. A. J. Holman Co., Lippincott Co, Phil & NY, 1973):
ACTS 7:32 "I AM THE GOD OF YOUR FATHERS, THE GOD OF ABRAHAM AND ISAAC AND JACOB". And Moses shook with fear and would not venture to look.

Maybe someone has an old edition and is kind enough to check 7:32?

Ruben  •  Link

I remember reading in Somerset Maugham that in every old English house there was at least a Bible and may be some Shakespeare works.
He concluded that the Bible helped to shape the English language.

Mary  •  Link

The King James Bible.

Authorized (hence it's description as the Authorized Version or AV) by King James I and VI and published in 1611. It was the new version 'authorized to be read in churches. It is this version which reads:

"Then Moses trembled and durst not behold."

It was this version of the Bible that was heard in every parish church for the next 300+ years and so it naturally influenced common language and patterns of speech throughout the country.

Pedro.  •  Link

A little off topic but, while looking for info on Impington, and as I don't think we have come across this yet..

The motto of the Pepys family translated is:- "As the mind of each, so is the man".

See background on Impington.

Grahamt  •  Link

Durst and dursen't
Still in use in the East Midlands of England. In Nottinghamshire it is often pronounced dost and dostn't. I'm so used to hearing it, I didn't realise it was rare.

Glyn  •  Link

JFrom "Julius Caesar" by William Shakespeare (c.1590s?):

"Cassius: When Caesar lived, he durst not thus have mou'd me

Brutus: Peace, peace, you durst not so have tempted him

Cassius: I durst not?!

Brutus: No

Cassius: What? durst not tempt him?

Brutus: For your life you durst not"

daniel  •  Link

excellent quote, Glyn!

A. Hamilton  •  Link

Durst and dursen't

cf. “dassent” used in some part of rurual South in United States, meaning “dare not”

JWB  •  Link

re Vinvent "Republicans"
Durst I rise to state "W" 10th great-grandson of Anne Hutchinson.

vicente  •  Link

I durst say "I doth thank ey, for my addled brain is not completely addled"
Re:Hutchinson, there may be a genetic connection But :
Anne Hutchinson -American Jezebel or Woman of Courage?

you are known to be a woman that hath had a great share in the promoting and divulging of those opinions that are the cause of this trouble,
worth reading:http://www.pragmatism.org…
Gov.: You knew that Mr. Wheelwright did preach this sermon and those that countenance him in this do break a law.
Mrs. H.: What law have I broken?
Gov.: Why the fifth commandment. ..."
These are some of the problems that Sam tried to resolve and We are even now still ever trying?

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"...but I find that both here, and every where else that I come, the Quakers do still continue, and rather grow than lessen."

It's the 60's, and those flower children are everywhere...

Second Reading

Bill  •  Link

"got to Baldwick"

Baldock, Herts, in the district of Hitchin. It belonged at one time to the Knights Templars, who built a church there.
---Wheatley, 1899.

Martin  •  Link

The current church was built by the Hospitallers after the Templars were suppressed. It is still 'very handsome'. (I live about two minutes' walk from it.)

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"took horse for London, and with much ado, the ways being very bad, got to Baldwick"

The Church of St Mary the Virgin is a parish church of the Church of England in Baldock in Hertfordshire. Dedicated to the Virgin Mary, the original church on the site dated to about 1150 and was built by the Knights Templar before being largely rebuilt in about 1330 by the Knights Hospitaller. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chu…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

'the Quakers do still continue, and rather grow than lessen."

L&M: Joseph Besse records a [Quaker] meeting at Baldock in 1661 and others elsewhere in the county: Collections of sufferings (1753), vol. i, ch. xvii. 'Many hundreds' gathered at Baldock in 1661 to hear George Fox: Fox, Journal (ed. Penney, ii. 119).

Third Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"... the Quakers do still continue, and rather grow than lessen."

“Allowed our trayne soldiers their charges when they apprehended some Quakers in our town and conveyed them to prison 13/-“ -- From the Upton Constable’s Account Book 1661

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