Friday 17 October 1662

This morning Tom comes to me, and I advise him how to deal with his mistress’s mother about his giving her a joynture, but I intend to speak with her shortly, and tell her my mind.

Then to my Lord Sandwich by water, and told him how well things do go in the country with me, of which he was very glad, and seems to concern himself much for me. Thence with Mr. Creed to Westminster Hall, and by and by thither comes Captn. Ferrers, upon my sending for him, and we three to Creed’s chamber, and there sat a good while and drank chocolate.

Here I am told how things go at Court; that the young men get uppermost, and the old serious lords are out of favour; that Sir H. Bennet, being brought into Sir Edward Nicholas’s place, Sir Charles Barkeley is made Privy Purse; a most vicious person, and one whom Mr. Pierce, the surgeon, to-day (at which I laugh to myself), did tell me that he offered his wife 300l. per annum to be his mistress. He also told me that none in Court hath more the King’s ear now than Sir Charles Barkeley, and Sir H. Bennet, and my Lady Castlemaine, whose interest is now as great as ever and that Mrs. Haslerigge, the great beauty, is got with child, and now brought to bed, and lays it to the King or the Duke of York.1 He tells me too that my Lord St. Albans’ is like to be Lord Treasurer: all which things do trouble me much. Here I staid talking a good while, and so by water to see Mr. Moore, who is out of bed and in a way to be well, and thence home, and with Commr. Pett by water to view Wood’s masts that he proffers to sell, which we found bad, and so to Deptford to look over some businesses, and so home and I to my office, all our talk being upon Sir J. M. and Sir W. B.’s base carriage against him at their late being at Chatham, which I am sorry to hear, but I doubt not but we shall fling Sir W. B. upon his back ere long.

At my office, I hearing Sir W. Pen was not well, I went to him to see, and sat with him, and so home and to bed.

24 Annotations

First Reading

Terry F  •  Link

"He tells me too that my Lord St. Albans' is like to be Lord Treasurer"

L&M note that "Southampton, however, remained in office until 1667."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Indecent proposal...

Wonder what was the joke for Sam regards Pierce's tale of the vile Sir Charles...Was he unable to believe Dr. and (or) Mrs. Pierce would turn down 300 per annum? ("Lord, Bess, the woman would settle for 25.")

(Interesting that Ferrers told him the story...

Nothing...I said nothing, spoilerwise.)


Batten vs Mennes? (and everybody, it seems) Did Mennes accidently step on Batten's grasping hand at Chatham by noting something amiss? Or is Batten just dissing the literary-inclined Sir John as incompetent? Details, Sam!

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Whoops...Would have been interesting if Ferrers had told him the story, read too hastily.

Still it would have made for quite a scene...

"So then, gentlemen..." Pepys gives broad smile. "Pierce tells me that Barkeley offered his wife 300L per annum to be his mistress."

Creed beams...Ferrers chuckling. Both eyed each other, smiling...

"And the good doctor tells me 'but of course my dear and faithful girl would never consider such thing'." Pfft, a hearty laugh... "So then I asked him...Solemnly...If the good lady was pregnant?... again?"

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"300 l. per annum to be his mistress"
thats about 27,000.00 lbs. in today's money! any decent woman would have rejected it; Jackie O. got much more from Aristotle Onassis,but of course hers was legit.

Jeannine  •  Link

A teaser here....Barkeley, Benett (aka Arlington) and Castlemaine....a career ending alliance for many to come....
Of note, Castlemaine, with her hot firely temper would go in and out of alliances with the likes of Buckingham (her cousin) etc. over time. It will be interesting to see whose heads will roll (meant in the figurative sense!)....stay tuned as they say.....

Terry F  •  Link

"with Commr. Pett by water to view Wood?s masts that he proffers to sell, which we found bad"

L&M note: "They were sap-rotten: PL 2874, p. 405."

Another strike against Batten.

Pauline  •  Link

"...our talk being upon Sir J. M. and Sir W. B.?s base carriage against him at their late being at Chatham..."
"Our" being Pett and Pepys? "Base carriage" being against Pett? Sound like Mennes and Batten are both the object of the "base carriage" charge.

Cumgranissalis  •  Link

"...and tell her my mind..." what does OED say on this phrase, would it be be more diplomatic, or would it be a good script for R.G.'s active mind.

Pauline  •  Link

"(at which I laugh to myself)"
As in Who wouldn't ask this beautiful woman to be his mistress? And as in These are my good friends and she is devoted to her husband--or I would mortgage and have her myself? As in She is not the Castlemaine type? As in I am hearing this from her husband, she has reported this to him--ergo, not tempted.

Cumgranissalis  •  Link

Dearie, always get deal signed first. "...that Mrs. Haslerigge, the great beauty, is got with child, and now brought to bed, and lays it to the King or the Duke of York.1..."
Ladies please note, get the parson first[ or get it down on a nixon tape].

Terry F  •  Link

Pauline, I read it as "all our talk being upon Sir J. M. and Sir W. B.'s base carriage against [Sir J. M.] at their late[ly] being at Chatham"

Pauline  •  Link

Terry, OK, I can see that.

Pauline  •  Link

get the parson first
Or at least settle on one royal brother or the other. Pointing to two leaves a lot of wiggle-out space.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

Hasleriggle-out space?

St. Alban's high spending style may cause Sam to worry what would happen to the Navy's money if he got the Treasurer's job.

Pett seems to have joined Pepys & Coventry in the anti-Batten camp. Pepys is
now paying attention to Sir W.Penn ( whose Irish lands I recently visited), splitting the old sea dogs. Batten is being maneuvered into isolation. "I doubt not that we shall fling Sir. W.B. upon his back ere long."

A brisk return to London: court gossip,office politics and business.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

Sam's style is brisker and his meaning clearer

when he's not wandering in the legal mists of Cambridgeshire

Robert Gertz  •  Link


"So, I trust this will be most satisfactory, ma'am."

"Most satisfactory, Mr. Pepys." a judicial nod.

"But of course Mr. Pepys, I should hope that your brother will love me and use me well." beaming, innocent smile from the young lady seated at the far end of the table.

Pepys looks at Tom's prospective-bride-in-law...As does her mum...

"Yes...Well, I'm sure love will come in its due course." airy wave of hand by Pepys.

"Yeah." Mum gives idiot daughter narrow look. "Now as to the settlement of lands at Sturtlow."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"Of course he wore a mask, but I am sure it was either the King or his brother." Ms. Haslerigge insists to the eagerly listening group at Whitehall.

"The way he wore that cloak thrown back over his shoulder was just so dashing...It had to be one of them."

Pepys listening, gives narrow-eyed glare at a suddenly-taken-with-fit-of-coughing Will Hewer...

Jeannine  •  Link

"Here I am told how things go at Court; that the young men get uppermost, and the old serious lords are out of favour"....We're seeing the begining of the shift of power that men like Clarendon, Ormond, etc. who strongly admired and supported Charles I will dread. Many of those "old serious lords" who have sacrificed their estates, families, etc. for Charles II during his exile had hopes that the monarchy as they knew it would be "restored" to what it was. This shifting political balance, the rising influcenes of Charles' whore(s), the placement of his "Merry Gang" (the rakes he "partied" with and pimped for him, like Buckingham, etc.) into positions of power will be a crushing blow to those faithful servants.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

What's interesting is that it'll be grim brother Jamie who will soon remain the chief hope of the technocrats for a hyper-efficient autocracy. And all things considered not bad reasons for hoping in him, his one glaring deficiency, his utter lack of brother Charlie's smooth charm and skill in handling men.

On the other hand, had these fellows succeeded, the Bolshevik Revolution might have occurred under the brutal English autocracy of Queen Mary in 1917.

Ousted King George V to Tsar Nicholas...

"Nicky! Help!!"


"So, sorry Georgie. Russia being a constitutional monarchy I really can't just take you and May in without the Duma's approval."

Rex Gordon  •  Link

"lays (it to) the King, or the Duke ..."

Reminds me of an amusing morning in paternity court in Baltimore, Maryland some years ago, when TWO men responded to the call of the case. The child's name: Menage a Trois Jones. Queried the judge, bemusedly startled, "Ma'am, do you know what your child's name means?" Replied the mother, "Of course, Your Honor. How do you think I got into this mess?"

Glyn  •  Link

We know that and Elizabeth Pierce seems to like the company of men, just as Sam is happiest talking to women of every age, class or degree of beauty.

Elizabeth Pierce is so beautiful that:
(a) Pepys has his own special nickname for her ("La Belle Pierce"), and (b) he and his wife have had arguments about her (our Elizabeth doesn't think she's all that special).

Here are a few entries:

Jan 26 1660: And I did perceive that Mrs. Pierce her coming so gallant, that it put the two young women quite out of courage.

Feb 24: I rode to Mr. Pierce's, who rose, and in a quarter of an hour, leaving his wife in bed (with whom Mr. Lucy methought was very free as she lay in bed).

Aug 30: This afternoon my wife went to Mr. Pierce's wife's child's christening ... This the first day that ever I saw my wife wear black patches since we were married!

May 5: Then to supper in the banquet house, and there my wife and I did talk high, she against and I for Mrs. Pierce (that she was a beauty), till we were both angry.

June 9: After dinner I left my wife there, and I walked to Whitehall, and then went to Mr. Pierce's and sat with his wife a good while (who continues very pretty) till he came. [Her second pregnancy in the Diary.]

Oct 9: at home I found Mrs. Pierce, la belle, and Madam Clifford, with whom I was forced to stay, and made them the most welcome I could; and I was (God knows) very well pleased with their beautiful company.

Pedro  •  Link

"We're seeing the beggning of the shift of power that men like Clarendon, Ormond, etc."

"But Arlington could also serve, and that was the type of man that the King was beginning to need in an age where the theoretical rights of King and Parliament were amorphous, yet their practical relationship had to be hammered out day after day.He was given the Privy Purse in October 1662 when he replaced the ageing Nicholas as Secretary of State."

Antonia Fraser (King Charles II.)

For more from Fraser on Arlington see background...…

Second Reading

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

OED has:

‘mind n. . . 17. Phrases . . c. to speak one's mind: to give one's judgement or opinion; esp. to express one's sentiments candidly or plainly, to speak freely. Also to open one's mind (now arch.). Similarly to tell (a person) one's mind, to let (a person) know one's mind: to let (a person) know one's judgement or opinion . .
. . a1616 a1616 Shakespeare As you like It (1623) ii. vii. 59 Giue me leaue To speake my minde.
. . 1702 R. Steele Funeral ii. 19 When I know her further than Skin-deep, I'll tell you more of my mind . . ‘

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