Sunday 5 January 1661/62

(Lord’s day). Left my wife in bed not well … [having her moys – L&M] and I to church, and so home to dinner, and dined alone upon some marrow bones, and had a fine piece of rost beef, but being alone I eat none. So after dinner comes in my brother Tom, and he tells me how he hath seen the father and mother of the girl which my cozen Joyces would have him to have for a wife, and they are much for it, but we are in a great quandary what to do therein, 200l. being but a little money; and I hope, if he continues as he begins, he may look out for one with more.

To church, and before sermon there was a long psalm, and half another sung out while the Sexton gathered what the church would give him for this last year. I gave him 3s., and have the last week given the Clerk 2s., which I set down that I may know what to do the next year, if it please the Lord that I live so long; but the jest was, the Clerk begins the 25th psalm, which hath a proper tune to it, and then the 116th, which cannot be sung with that tune, which seemed very ridiculous.

After church to Sir W. Batten’s, where on purpose I have not been this fortnight, and I am resolved to keep myself more reserved to avoyd the contempt which otherwise I must fall into, and so home and sat and talked and supped with my wife, and so up to prayers and to bed, having wrote a letter this night to Sir J. Mennes in the Downs for his opinion in the business of striking of flags.

36 Annotations

First Reading

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"he may look out for one with more"
Did Elisabeth have more than 200 L.when they got married?

Glyn  •  Link

Here is the equivalent church service from last January:…

The first week of January seems to be a fraught time for Elizabeth. Two Januaries ago when the Diary begins, she burned her arm while cooking some turkey in the garret they were then living in.

Glyn  •  Link

Last January Pepys reckoned that he himself was worth 300 pounds, so 200 doesn't seem a particularly small amount, especially if Tom isn't an enthusiastic tailor; and anyway I think she has some background in tailoring (?) so would be a good wife in that sense.

Bradford  •  Link

Aside from his trade, what recommends Tom to expect a wife with a bigger dowry? Great Expectations from that still-unsettled estate?

Todd Bernhardt  •  Link

Interesting that he seems to think the problem with being too familiar lies with Batten and not with Penn...

dirk  •  Link

"and so home and six and talked and supped with my wife"


Can somebody give us the L&M reading?

dirk  •  Link

Rev. Ralph Josselin's diary for today:

"Jan: 5. yet no frost, but this day wind, and drying like March, many fear a pestilential rotting air, the lord be a shield to mine for I shelter myself in him(,) men regardless of god and profane beyond thought. oh lord what will become of us"

Paul Chapin  •  Link

After six ...
Can whoever explains the "six" also fill in the dots for us in the first sentence?

vicenzo  •  Link

I can 'ear it now "...Left my wife in bed not well . . . and ..." 'just like a man.'
The old troubles that hath been a sore in their marriage.
a sample of Psalms 25:19
19 Consider mine enemies; for they are many; and they hate me with cruel hatred.

25th psalm for those who want a reading…
Re: 'eiress: marriagable wenches are dime a dozen, appox. a third of the lasses remained old maids. 200 quid [P] is like 4 times annual clerks wage, not a bad dowery, today that spells $80000, dollars for a very small flat[condo], which would be same at that time, according Picard [p32] would build a house in a side street for 300P , and that was after the town had the biggest housing shortage due to a fire.
re: Eliza 'It' was her looks, not her dowery that Sam fell for.

vicenzo  •  Link

No wonder, I am a Deist?? after that sermon "...I gave him 3s.,..."

vicenzo  •  Link

"...and so home and[ read at ] six and talked and supped with my wife...." because it appears to be after the second dose of homilies, and escaping another session of Battens sermon on being available when he is called to record the minutes.

Clement  •  Link

" avoyd the contempt which otherwise I must fall into..."
Since Batten has participated in many of Sam's heaviest drinking episodes, often with his cohort, Capt. Cocke, I thought Sam meant he was avoiding Christmas with Batten due to his resolution to be less drunk this year.
Consider November:
Nov 5 "I and Captain Cocke sat late and drank much"
Nov 10 "we (Batten, Cocke and Sam) sent for two bottles of Canary...which did do me a great deal of hurt" (this was an infamous bender)
Nov 23 "Batten and Cock, after drinking a good deal of wine"
Nov 26 "Sir Wms both and I and Captain Cock...sat till 9 a-clock by ourselfs in the office, talking and drinking three or four bottles of wine."
Nov 30 "Batten and I and Captain Cock got a bottle of sack into the office, and there we sat late and drank"

Penn appears only once here. So he and his children were possibly safer company for Sam, as he attempted to give his liver the holiday off.

Mary  •  Link

L&M readings.

my wife not well with her moys. (i.e. monthlies)

and so home and sat and talked with my wife...

gerry  •  Link

L&M also have an annotation saying "it was usual to choose a long psalm when these New Year collections were made".
Why do you think Sam wouldn't eat the roast beef because he was alone?

Ann  •  Link

Gerry -- I took it to mean that he wasn't going to enjoy/waste a nice piece of meat dining alone, and would rather wait until someone could share it with him. When I'm alone, I'll eat scrambled eggs, and wait until the hubby and kids are home to make the fried chicken....

Mary  •  Link

the roast beef.

Maybe Sam appreciates that the beef will eat better cold if it remains uncut; the juices will be retained within the joint rather than seeping out from the cut surface onto the platter. Always assuming, of course, that it hasn't been cooked to death in the first place.

Jackie  •  Link

Whenever Sam has eaten a proper joint of meat, such as a joint of roast beef or a chicken, he has eaten it in company. In those days, it was uncommon for "ordinary" people to eat such good joints of meat. I suspect that Sam still is aware of his recent changes in fortune to save up eating the finer things in life for when he is in the sort of company who can notice that he is of high enough status to eat such items.

vicenzo  •  Link

Clement: You doth make a very good argument. Only in recent times titles have lacked full authority in personal relationships. When I was Neophyte civil servant, every one was on drinking terms {from Senior exec. to Junior}, but there was a fine line one could not cross. The Titles would be dropped at the bar, but in the work environment , pecking order was re-established in total [Titles and all].

David A. Smith  •  Link

"2s., which I set down that I may know what to do the next year"
Emulating Sam's milestone delight, this is 'the first time I ever saw Sam reference his future self.'
A diary is a blog we write to the future, and Sam is now writing the diary *with the express intention of re-reading his earlier entries.* True, this one is mere bookkeeping, but I suspect it will occur to him (if it has not already) that he can further use it to chronicle his emotional state even as he has been chronicling his rising fortunes (and cost of living!).

Clement  •  Link

Neophyte civil servant
v, that insight makes your posts all the more interesting. I get the impression that some of the cultural continuum from Sam's era to your youthful working memories have since been lost to us. Am I way off base on that?
Also, when should we watch Amazon for publication of your civil service diary??

dirk  •  Link

I thought Sam meant he was avoiding Christmas with Batten due to his resolution to be less drunk this year.
- re Clement

Sam's avoiding Sir William batten has everything to do with what happened on saturday 21 December:

"I was vexed to see Sir Williams both [= Sir William batten & Sir William Penn] seem to think so much that I should be a little out of the way, saying that without their Register they were not a Committee, which I took in some dudgeon, and see clearly that I must keep myself at a little distance with them and not crouch, or else I shall never keep myself up even with them."

Cfr. annotations on 21 december entry.

vicenzo  •  Link

Formality along with please, thank-you , Dear Sir/Madam, Yours Truly, Yours Sincerely,The Reverend Blah Blah.The Right [bloody] Honorable Laud, are slowly fading in to the twilight 'zone'. Being replaced with Matey, get off yer duff and send in yer money, nice friendly like.[a bit strong but?]. First name bases, can be nice but looses some value. Just a tort?

Clement  •  Link

"keep myself even with them"
Dirk, with his reference to a fortnight that makes perfect sense, thanks for correction.

Pedro.  •  Link

"publication of your civil service diary??"

Clement do not tempt Vincente, unlike Sam he may still be bound by the "Official Secrets Act". Or maybe he can publish under the "50 year rule?".

Carolina  •  Link

I wonder why he has not avoided W.Penn ?

As for Mr. Vincent publishing a diary - heaven forbid !
Nobody would get anything done - we'd all be too busy reading.

vicenzo  •  Link

you are safe.

dirk  •  Link

I wonder why he has not avoided W.Penn ? - re Carolina

Maybe Batten was the one who had used the strongest words in the earlier discussion? Or the most influential [= dangerous] of the two (he was later to become an M.P. - Penn didn't rise any higher). Or maybe Sam just saw Batten more often than Penn?

Pedro.  •  Link

Avoiding Batten.

Would I be right in recalling, earlier in the Diary, that Batten had disapproved of some of the contracts that Sam had set up.

Second Reading

Geoff Hallett  •  Link

Was in St Olave's a couple of weeks ago. High up on the wall is a huge memorial to Sam. Opposite is the bust of Elizabeth, where she can see him and still keep an eye on him. It was explained that the space for his memorial was originally a door accessible by stone steps up the outer wall. Sam used to sit in the balcony reserved for the navy.

Annie B  •  Link

Geoff - that is so neat! I can't wait to go on a Pepys tour (perhaps self-directed) next time I'm in London!

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"the Clerk begins the 25th psalm, which hath a proper tune to it,"

Cf. M. Frost, Engl. and Scott. psalm and hymn tunes, c. 1543-1677. nos 43-5, 128-9. (L&M note)

Morning and Evening Prayer and Holy Communion include a Psalm, chosen according to the lectionary of the day.…

Third Reading

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