Wednesday 2 October 1661

All this morning at Pegg Kite’s with my uncle Fenner, and two friends of his, appraising her goods that her mother has left; but the slut is like to prove so troublesome that I am out of heart with troubling myself in her business. After we had done we all went to a cook’s shop in Bishopsgate Street and dined, and then I took them to the tavern and did give them a quart of sack, and so parted. I home and then took my wife out, and in a coach of a gentlewoman’s that had been to visit my Lady Batten and was going home again our way, we went to the Theatre, but coming late, and sitting in an ill place, I never had so little pleasure in a play in my life, yet it was the first time that ever I saw it, “Victoria Corombona.” Methinks a very poor play. Then at night troubled to get my wife home, it being very dark, and so we were forced to have a coach. So to supper and to bed.

9 Annotations

First Reading

Alan Bedford  •  Link

"Vittoria Corombona" is an alternate title for John Webster's "The White Devil".

Here's an excerpt from a review of a 2001 New York production, directed by Gale Edwards:

" The White Devil is not exactly an untouchable classic. It is the renaissance version of a slasher movie, with all the cliches of its genre, including lustful wives, studly nobles, scheming priests, outraged fathers, jealous siblings, slippery servants, and heartless assasins. ...It goes like this: Duke Brachiano is in love with Vittoria Corombona, but he is married to Isabella. Vittoria's ambitious brother Flamineo arranges the murder of Isabella and of Vittoria's husband Camillo, to get the rich Brachiano and Vittoria together. Brachiano and Vittoria marry and move to Padua. But the Duke of Florence, Isabella's brother, sets out for revenge.

The White Devil may not be England's profoundest play, but it is full of good, old-fashioned action and primal emotions. Everyone is motivated by simple drives such as lust, greed, ambition, honor, and revenge."

Full review at:…

vicente  •  Link

According to one source it was based on a real person.
Vittoria Accoramboni (1557-1585) - Italian woman whose husband was murdered so that she could marry Orsini, Duca di Bracciano, after the duke's death, she was murdered; John Webster's play The White Devil; or Vittoria Corombona tells her story…
her name was used invain by other authors.

playThe White Devil; or Vittoria Corombona [victoria]
re-written by Charles & Mary Lamb,…
the white company by conan doyle

? Evelyn Waugh http://www.abbotshill.freeserve.c…
produced? by John Webster's in 1612.

vicente  •  Link

J. Evelyn did say on 22 last "an exceeding sickly wet Autumne after a very wet summer." So it must be dark,dangererous, wet and muddy?

"...Then at night troubled to get my wife home, it being very dark, and so we were forced to have a coach..."
also according to J.E. the area is still on alert after the war of Embassidores.

Lorry  •  Link

This entry shows what a diplomat Sam is. He wines and dines a "slut" like Pegg Kite, his uncle and friends just to get into her good graces. This is social climbing at it's best.

dirk  •  Link

Evelyn's diary

"... to Lond, where from the Officers of the Towre, Sir William Compton, Sir Ch: Berkeley and others, who were attending at this Meeting of the Ambassadors 3 dayes before, having collected what I could; I drew up a narrative in vindication of his Majestie & carriage of his officers, & standersby &c: on Thursday, his Majestie sent one of the Pages of the Backstayrs for me, to waite on him with my papers, in his Cabinet, where was present onely Sir Henry Bennet (privy purse) [since Secretary of State & E. of Arlington & Lord Chamb:] when I read to his Majestie what I had drawn up: by the time I had read halfe a page, came in Mr. Secretary Morice with a large paper, desiring to speake with his Majestie who told him that he was now very buisy, & therefore order'd him to come againe some other time: The Secretary reply'd, what he had in his hand was of extraordinary importance: So the King rose up, & commanding me to stay, went aside to a Corner of the roome with the Secretary: after a while, the Secretary dispatchd, his Majestie returning to me at the Table, a letter was brought him from Madame out of France, this he read, & bid me proceede where I left off, which I did 'til I had ended all the narrative, to his majesties great satisfaction, and after I had inserted one or 2 more Clauses, in which his Majestie instructed me, commanded that it should that night be sent to the post-house, directed to the Lord Ambassador at Paris, which was the Earle of St. Albans: and then at leasure to prepare him a Copy, which he would publish: This I did, & immediately sent my papers to the Secretary of State; with his Majesties expresse command of dispatching them that night for France: Before I went out of his Majesties Closet, he cal'd me back, to shew me some Ivorie Statues, and other Curiosities that I had not seene before:"

Todd Bernhardt  •  Link

re: Sam the Social Climber

Lorry, I don't think Pegg Kite was part of the party whom Sam wined and dined. It looks to me as if it's just Uncle Fenner and his two friends ... he hasn't had a good word to say about her yet, and it seems as if he thinks he's simply doing a favor by helping to oversee the will (and he's on the verge of changing his mind about that!)

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Very interesting situation "...Then at night troubled to get my wife home, it being very dark, and so we were forced to have a coach. ..."

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"Vittoria Corombona" is part of the subtitle of John Webster's tragedy, The white devil, which was first acted c. 1609, published in 1612, and, despite Pepys' unfavourable reaction to it, was one of the principal stock plays of the King's Company at the TR, Vere St. (L&M note)

Log in to post an annotation.

If you don't have an account, then register here.