Friday 6 June 1662

At my office all alone all the morning, and the smith being with me about other things, did open a chest that hath stood ever since I came to the office, in my office, and there we found a modell of a fine ship, which I long to know whether it be the King’s or Mr. Turner’s.

At noon to the Wardrobe by appointment to meet my father, who did come and was well treated by my Lady, who tells me she has some thoughts to send her two little boys to our house at Brampton, but I have got leave for them to go along with me and my wife to Hampton Court to-morrow or Sunday. Thence to my brother Tom’s, where we found a letter from Pall that my mother is dangerously ill in fear of death, which troubles my father and me much, but I hope it is otherwise, the letter being four days old since it was writ.

Home and at my office, and with Mr. Hater set things in order till evening, and so home and to bed by daylight.

This day at my father’s desire I lent my brother Tom 20l., to be repaid out of the proceeds of Sturtlow when we can sell it. I sent the money all in new money by my boy from Alderman Backwell’s.

22 Annotations

First Reading

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"and the smith"
Well, seems like locksmiths will stay forever! I still call them from time to time!

Sjoerd  •  Link

"New Money"
During the Commonwealth experiments had been made with "milled" coins as opposed to "hammered" coins.During the first year of the Restauration hammered coins had been used again.
A man named Blondeau would introduce a new "milled" coinage later on in 1662; maybe the coins Samuel has used today were earlier examples of the "milled" type.…

A. Hamilton  •  Link


Blacksmith or locksmith? I think the former.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

I long to know

Implies that if it is the King's (public property) then Sam as incumbent can keep and display it (though it remains the King's). If Mr. Turner's, goodbye model if Pepys is an honest man (which this note suggests that he is).

A. Hamilton  •  Link

where we found a letter from Pall

Fascinating. Sam's not taking the bad news at face value, calculating that it would have been sent postehaste if truly very serious. He doesn't say so, but his view seems to be that either his mother or Pall or both are prone to exaggeration about Ma's health and have another agenda in sending the letter.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

new money by my boy from Alderman Backwell's.

Sounds as if Sam is one of the beneficiaries of Sandwich’s effort to convert crusados to sterling?

Australian Susan  •  Link

Backwell was Sam's banker, so what Sam did was send Wayneman with the equivalent of a cheque to draw the money and then Wayneman trotted round with it. Wonder why Sam mentions this detail: to show Tom that he has a boy to run errands? to show he can draw money from a bank?
I agree about the Brampton letter - letters could surely have been sent faster than 4 days, but I think that if the letter had been sent "express" (by a courier on horseback), Sam/Tom would have been liable for the payment, which they would opnly have been content about if the matter was really serious. Interesting that Pall sent it to Tom not Sam. Maybe she thought Tom was the more sympathetic listener. Maybe this is a disguised complaint from Pall (who never wanted to be sent into the country) - she is fed up with the murky Fens and being stuck with a mother she doesn't get on with and who complains of her health all the time. Note that Mr P did not bring his daughter when he last visited Sam in London. Perhaps Pall is riled by this.

dirk  •  Link

Blacksmith or locksmith?

One and the same in the 17th c., I think.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

Interesting that Pall sent it to Tom not Sam.

I have the impression that is where Sam's father is staying.

Pauline  •  Link

'Pall sent it to Tom not Sam'
Pall sent it to her father who is staying at Tom's, his old home at the tailor shop in Salisbury Square. Let's read less into it, she may actually find love and happiness among "the murky Fens" before our tale is full told.

I'm not aware of old lady Pepys complaining "of her health all the time". Beings as how I think she suffers from dementia and complaint has been about her and less from her as to her own state.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

Maybe Pall is fed up with being with a difficult mother, and sends the letter to get Dad home ASAP.

Pauline  •  Link

Maybe Margaret has sunk into a helpless funk without her husband there to provide "reality."
Or she may have had a small stroke. Or caught a cold, or come down with the flu, or have driven Pall stark helpless. It is not clear.

Cumgranissalis  •  Link

Re: goldern years, it be the rusty years , trust me?, 'tis the time, the doctors have fun giving out tablets galore,[of course 'tis why more people live longer]. Wot ails mrs P. be years of scrubbing floors and emptying the chamber pots since she be 12 years or there about, rescued by marriage to live the luxurious life of being barefoot and pregnant. Then there be the resting years, watching the old man struggling to make ends meet, being rewarded by seeing her son run around in a carriage, fitted out in the lattest fashions. Her only daughter be without a man to pay her bills. Still she be luckier than most ex maids, lives in a luxury abode, fairly smog free envirement,[few will remember the black hankerchiefs of the pre 60's, and chest full of phlegm ]
Many have forgotten the Rickets and the other debilitating problems that dragged, most people down.
In the first world war in 1914, approx. 40 % of 18 to 26 year olds were rejected for being unfit, due to job occupational diseases.
So it be no wonder, Mrs P be a little worse for wear and tear and be under the weather at her age.

JWB  •  Link

Mom's what about 50-52?
"Average life expectancy at birth for English people in the late 16th/early 17th centuries was just under 40 –39.7 years. However, this low figure was mostly due to the high rate of infant and child mortality – over 12% of all children born would die within their first year. A man or woman who reached the age of 30 could expect to live to 59. Life expectancy in New England was much higher, where the average man died in his mid-sixties and women lived on average to 62.” Carolyn Freeman Travers, Research Manager, Plimoth Plantation…

Cumgranissalis  •  Link

the last time we doth of read of Ma P. be sep 23 '61
"..sad to hear my father and mother wrangle ..." then Beth and hubby dothe enjoy ".....with more epicurism of sleep..." and in single beds too "....I never had so much content in all my life, and so my wife says it was with her...."…

Mary  •  Link

The £20 loan to Tom.

Not really surprising that Sam mentions either the loan or the source of the cash at Alderman Backwell’s; it’s a tidy sum, after all. Tom needs the cash, Sam doesn’t have that sort of money about him, so sends Wayneman off on the errand.

Tom’s business doesn’t sound as if it is doing too well, does it? Unless, of course, he’s been offered a bolt of super-specially fine cloth and hasn’t the ready cash to pay for it. Interesting that he doesn’t apply directly to Sam for the loan, but gets Papa to make the approach.

Pedro  •  Link

"or have driven Pall stark helpless"

We do not know, but it could be that Sam's mother is more than a match for Pal when she is left alone with her. The reports of her illness may have been greatly exaggerated. From the background (L&M)--

"Pepys writes of her at this time as both ill-natured and ill-favoured. She was not thought worthy of being Elizabeth's waiting-woman."

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"doctors have fun giving out tablets galore"
Cumgranissalis,methinks the drug companies are the ones that are really having lots of fun.

Bradford  •  Link

According to the Companion, the date of birth for Pepys's mother is not known. John was born in 1601; and "On 15 Oct. 1626 he married Margaret Kite of Newighton Green, a girl of simple birth who had been a washmaid in her youth." Though there's nothing to prevent her being younger or older than her husband, if she's his age she would thus be around 61.

Cumgranissalis  •  Link

'Tis why in England they made retirement age for Women, be 60, and the average age of Hubby be advanced 5 years. The odds be she [Mother P.], be few years younger than Senior P., it be that economic idea, exceptions, there be when one has the 'do rae me'.
But that male syndrome, girl be younger, much easier to control?
besides a girl usally be more advance in all departments than the same aged Male?? [not very PC but]

Second Reading

john  •  Link

How often did Pepys trust Will to deliver money? Is this a matter of growing trust in Will to be noted?

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"At my office all alone all the morning, and the smith being with me about other things, did open a chest that hath stood ever since I came to the office, in my office, and there we found a modell of a fine ship"

L&M: Since c. 1650 the navy authorities had ordered wooden scale models of ships under construction: R. C. and R. Anderson, Sailing Ship, p. 146. Pepys made a collection of them: see… and…
Thomas Turner had been Clerk-General of the office in the 1650's.

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