Sunday 13 October 1661

(Lord’s day). Did not stir out all day, but rose and dined below, and this day left off half skirts and put on a wastecoate, and my false taby wastecoate with gold lace; and in the evening there came Sir W. Batten to see me, and sat and supped very kindly with me, and so to prayers and to bed.

18 Annotations

First Reading

Glyn  •  Link

It was a year ago that General Harrison was hung, drawn and quartered:…

I'm a little surprised they weren't worried about fanatics disturbing the peace.

daniel  •  Link

Could someone explain whether poor Sam left off half skirts because of his late "bruise" or becasue the need to keep up with new changing fashions for young galants (bruised or not)?

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Wonder how Beth is taking the joy of having Sam home continuously? I note no happy mention of her delight in his constant presence.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Though she's probably thanking God he can move about on his own today. Yesterday...

A call from upstairs... "Lisabeth!!...Jane!!"

"What does his Lordship want now, Jane?"

"Beggin' your pardon, mum. Mr. Pepys wants another of them catawhatevers and some hot water. And his account book and journal."


"He specially asked that you bring em, mum."

Grrr...The first two times it was sweet; the sixth time...


vicente  •  Link

He missed a good sermon too/

dirk  •  Link

Rev. Josselin's diary for today

I haven't quoted Josselin's diary for some time because he really didn't have much to say, but today's entry is a beauty (the first sentence is somewhat of a brain teaser to figure it all out).

"God was good to me in manifold outward mercies, a very comfortable season my heart through grace not left as sometimes to vanity, evil is as my death, but when lord will you slay it in the actings thereof, all my sisters by my father and mother here at Colne with me supping this night together and not together again though my sister Ann went not until october 16. about noon, my sister Mary in town never coming up to see us in all that time.

This night my daughter Jane was taken sick very strangely, not able to go or help herself and so continued three or four days, and then somewhat better, like the gout or joint ague."

vicente  •  Link

Normal family, I doth believe, stuck with one, and another so near yet so far.

Mary  •  Link

the half skirts

are half-shirts, according to the L&M edition. The weather is getting colder and Pepys adjusts his day-wear to suit the season.

JonTom Kittredge  •  Link

False Taby
Can anyone tell us what "false taby" is? I assume that it's some kind of (expensive) cloth, and SP's waistcoat is only immitation taby, but what is taby?

Glyn  •  Link

Here's the definition - it's originally from Baghdad apparently. I presume that it was a rich type of watered or wavy coloured silk and that this is a cheaper imitation. Because he's from a tailoring family he presumably knows his fabrics quite well.

And as to why he's wearing it - it's October and the weather is getting colder!

tab-by: A rich watered silk.
A fabric of plain weave.

Having light and dark striped markings: a tabby cat.
Made of or resembling watered silk.

a. 1. Having a wavy or watered appearance; as, a tabby waistcoat. —Pepys.

French tabis, from Old French atabis, from Medieval Latin attab, from Arabic ?attb, after al-?Attbya, a suburb of Baghdad, Iraq

Source: The American Heritage- Dictionary of the English Language,

Mary  •  Link

Two waistcoats.

Note that Sam appears to wear two of these garments. The first one that he mentions is probably for warmth and the second one (false tabby) for 'show'.

Glyn  •  Link

One for Language Hat: is this a common sequence for the inclusion of words into the English language, i.e. truncating the first part then adding an intermediate vowel?

The sequence here appears to be 'attb - attab - attabee (in French pronunciation) - tabby.

Pauline  •  Link

Googling "al-Attbya" gets one hit:
"Don't forget the tabby cat, named for al-Attbya, a Baghdad suburb, after
the prince Attab. One of Iraq's better exports!"

From the watered description of the fabric, I'm guessing it is like what we call moire (silk or satin).

language hat  •  Link

"One for Language Hat"

People, people, people! When you copy text with special characters, please pay attention to whether they carry over. Often they simply disappear, as here; this also happens with the OED. You have to add in the vowels (they're almost always vowels, which had macrons or other non-HTML elements in the original) in order to have your version make any sense.

In this case, "Medieval Latin attab, from Arabic attb, after al-?Attbya” turns out to be “Medieval Latin attabi, from Arabic ?attabi, after al-?Attabiya,” where the a’s and i’s I’ve added are long (ie, they have a macron, a little bar over them, in the dictionary). And if you google “Attabiya, Baghdad” you will get a number of hits, including this informative piece on the city’s history:…

“Another quarter is that called Al-Attabiya, where are made the clothes from which it takes its names, they being of silk and cotton in various colours.”

And if you look up “tabby” in the Online Etymology Dictionary, you learn that the quarter was “named for prince ‘Attab of the Omayyad dynasty.”…

So in conclusion: I beg of you, proofread your etymology quotes, lest ye mislead your fellow Pepysians!

This has been a public service announcement, brought to you by Languagehat of America.

Ruben  •  Link

"One for Language Hat"

Chapeau for Language Hat!

Second Reading

Bill  •  Link

"left off half skirts"

SKIRTS, the Part of a Garment below the Waist.
---An Universal Etymological English Dictionary. N. Bailey, 1675.

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

OED has:

‘tabby, n. and adj. < French tabi . . apparently < Arabic ʿattābiy, name of a quarter of Bagdad in which this stuff was manufactured, named after ʿAttāb, great-grandson of Omeyya . .
A. . 1. n. a. A general term for a silk taffeta, app. originally striped, but afterwards applied also to silks of uniform colour waved or watered.
. . 1662 J. Davies tr. A. Olearius Voy. & Trav. Ambassadors 23 One piece of silver'd Taby, with flowers of Gold . .

B. adj.
1. Made or consisting of tabby (see A. 1).
. . 1661 S. Pepys Diary 13 Oct. (1970) II. 195 This day..put false taby waistcoat with gold lace . . ‘

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