Wednesday 8 January 1661/62

I rose and went to Westminster Hall, and there walked up and down upon several businesses, and among others I met with Sir W. Pen, who told me that he had this morning heard Sir G. Carteret extremely angry against my man Will that he is every other day with the Commissioners of Parliament at Westminster, and that his uncle was a rogue, and that he did tell his uncle every thing that passes at the office, and Sir William, though he loves the lad, did advise me to part with him, which did with this surprise mightily trouble me, though I was already angry with him, and so to the Wardrobe by water, and all the way did examine Will about the business, but did not tell him upon what score, but I find that the poor lad do suspect something. To dinner with my Lady, and after dinner talked long with her, and so home, and to Sir W. Batten’s, and sat and talked with him, and so home troubled in mind, and so up to my study and read the two treaties before Mr. Selden’s “Mare Clausum,” and so to bed. This night come about 100l. from Brampton by carrier to me, in holsters from my father, which made me laugh.

24 Annotations

First Reading

Pedro.  •  Link

"from Brampton by carrier to me, in holsters from my father, which made me laugh."

After a period, where Sam was worried about the health of mother and father, and the relationship between them, this is the first we have heard of them for some time. I bet they have been having a whale of a time out in the sticks!

Bradford  •  Link


vicenzo  •  Link

Holsters? a guess: just a leather case with a lock to prevent thievery. then the name was hi-jacked for carrying a pistol. I wonder, if there be a connection to Holstein, the state, and leather goods, a case made of leather coming from Denmark and for want of better moniker, it be called a [holstein] holster.

vicenzo  •  Link

My Man Will has a nice life, after helping Sam with his boots and cloaks has day to abscond and let the girls do all the mucky ucky chores like empty the "Chamber pot".

Australian Susan  •  Link

Holster from an etymological dictionary
"leather case for a pistol," 1663, probably from O.E. heolster, earlier helustr "concealment, hiding place," from P.Gmc. *khelus-/*khulis- (cf. O.H.G. huluft "cover, case, sheath," O.N. hulstr "case, sheath," M.Du. holster, Ger. Holfster "holster"), from PIE *kel- "to cover, to hide" (see cell). Intermediate forms are wanting, and the modern word may as well be from the O.N. or M.Du. cognates.

Australian Susan  •  Link

Sorry -
O.E. = Old English
O.H.G. = Old High German
O.N. = Old Norse
M. Du = Middle Dutch
Don't know what P.Gmc or PIE mean.

Australian Susan  •  Link

"made me laugh"
Why? Because it was so much money? Because conveying it in holsters was a silly thing to do? Because it was a surprise?

Paul Chapin  •  Link

Etymological abbreviations
P.Gmc = Proto-Germanic
PIE = Proto-Indo-European

Mary  •  Link


The 1663 citation quoted by Australian Susan reads "holsters at his saddle-bow". Perhaps Sam's amusement arises from his father's calculation that £100 secreted in such a way might be safer than £100 carried in a saddle-bag; a less obvious target for highway robbers, provided that they had noticed that no pistol-butt was to be seen protruding from the holsters

Ruben  •  Link

today we got 3 sentences. The first one is as long as it gets!
May be it is P.Gmc?

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"Sir G. Carteret extremely angry against my man Will"
Why is Carteret extremely angry? afraid of whistle blowing?

Mary  •  Link

Carteret's anger.

Occasioned by the fact that Will Hewer's uncle, Richard Blackborne, was a strong Puritan who had flourished during the Commonwealth but lost office at the Restoration. He is definitely out of favour with the new regime and therefore Carteret is uneasy about the intelligence that he may be gleaning from Will. Cartaret had always been a vigorous anti-Parliamentarian, so it's not surprising that he distrusts Blackborne and/or his motives.

A. De Araujo  •  Link

Thanks Mary

Mary  •  Link

"his uncle was a rogue"

At this date the term 'rogue' retained its full, pejorative force to indicate a thoroughly dishonest, untrustworthy man. It is only in more recent times that its less forceful meaning (a bit of a lad etc.) has come to predominate, at least in English English.

JWB  •  Link

Cattle & Blackburne...
To put the best turn on Carteret's "rogue", I think he means an outlier or stray, like a cow who won't keep to the herd.

Glyn  •  Link

These people expect treachery and double-dealing because they did so much of it themselves during the war years, but this puts Pepys into a very difficult position. He's only a few years older than Hewer himself, and now he's being told to let Hewer go for the sake of national security, and Montagu is too far away to get advice from. I think most people in Pepys' situation would have done it, especially as Pepys is still irritated with Hewer about him having been drunk. He certainly doesn't want to fall into suspicion by association, his own position is still too insecure for that.

Glyn  •  Link

The Parliamentary Commissioners

This is an organization created by Parliament for the express purpose of decommissioning much of the fleet and reducing the strength of the military in general, now that stable government has finally been restored. They are putting a lot of sailors out of work.

"The parliamentary commissioners (provided since 29 December 1660 with additional funds by 12 Car. II c. 27) had held their first meeting (as the statute required) on 12 January. Local commissioners had been appointed to assist them to pay off 65 ships. The Navy Board (normally in charge of pay) was required by the act to supply information, but not to assist in the paying-off." (L&M)

Perhaps Carteret considers the Commissioners of Parliament to be a bigger enemy than the Puritans or the French. Although the Navy Board is required to supply information Will Hewer shouldn’t be fraternizing with them, or be considered their source of information inside the Navy Board. Inter-departmental politics can have serious consequences to your career.

For further information, see Emilio’s observations at:…

Phil, should the Commissioners of Parliament have their own entry, rather than linking to Parliament? The phrase comes up fairly often.

vicenzo  •  Link

Great connection to the inside politics. Glyn

Australian Susan  •  Link

Let's put the best take on this and just hope Will H was naive and being exploited by the unscrupulous.

Clement  •  Link

Re: Will exploited
An even better take is that Will has done nothing that Carteret alledges, and his bluster may have no greater basis than his own paranoia. This isn't the first time he's suspected treachery on the part of a naval clerk, as evidenced in the entry referenced by Glyn…
when he similarly impeached Thomas Hayter, without any resulting consequence being evident, assumedly because there was no merit.

On the day following this post Carteret is alone with Pepys, yet makes no mention of his allegation. If his suspicions of Will were well founded I'd expect the Treasurer of the Navy to prosecute this serious charge with Sam, who was merely the Clerk of Acts at the time.
Perhaps instead, Carteret is deliberately trying to keep the ranks below him aflutter as a means of asserting his power.
And we don't know context--maybe the less-than-competent Carteret had just heard one too many compliments about the young administrator, Sam Pepys, so, threatened, he responds in anger, impugning Sam's favored clerk, and by association, Sam's judgement.
Or maybe I'm being paranoid.

vicenzo  •  Link

more on Holster: OE: first mention is 1665 by Butler. So this entry is even an earlier one. It's root appears to be baltic related Du/Eng/Icl/Da : Du, Houlster: Icl, Hustlr:Da, Hylster: Case sheath for concealment. Tied to the pummel of saddle or to the waist of a Horseman.

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"heard Sir G. Carteret extremely angry against my man Will that he is every other day with the Commissioners of Parliament at Westminster, and that his uncle was a rogue, and that he did tell his uncle every thing that passes at the office"

Blackborne was unpopular with royalists such as Carteret because of his service as Secretary to the Admiralty Commission under the Protectorate. (L&M note)

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"the two treaties before Mr. Selden’s “Mare Clausum,”"

The "treaties" (treatises) were two appendixes added by the translator (after, not before, the text) in the 1652 edition: Additional evidences...relating to the reigns of K. James and K. charls; and Dominium Maris...expressing the title, which the Venetians pretend unto the sole dominion, and absolute sovereigntie of the Adriatick Sea. Cf.… and………

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Robert Blackborne was an early tutor of Pepys's as secretary to Mountagu.

"Thence to the Admiralty, where Mr. Blackburne and I (it beginning to hold up) went and walked an hour or two in the Park, he giving of me light in many things in my way in this office that I go about."…

Of letters: "There was also one for me from Mr. Blackburne, who with his own hand superscribes it to S.P. Esq., of which God knows I was not a little proud."…

Blackborne had also recommended Will as a clerk and employee to Pepys.

Later "W. Hewer fetched his uncle Blackburne by appointment to me, to discourse of the business of the Navy in the late times; and he did do it, by giving me a most exact account in writing, of the several turns in the Admiralty and Navy, of the persons employed therein, from the beginning of the King’s leaving the Parliament, to his Son’s coming in"…

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