Wednesday 3 December 1662

Called up by Commissioner Pett, and with him by water, much against my will, to Deptford, and after drinking a warm morning draft, with Mr. Wood and our officers measuring all the morning his New England masts, with which sight I was much pleased for my information, though I perceive great neglect and indifference in all the King’s officers in what they do for the King.

That done, to the Globe, and there dined with Mr. Wood, and so by water with Mr. Pett home again, all the way reading his Chest accounts, in which I did see things did not please me; as his allowing himself 300l. for one year’s looking to the business of the Chest, and 150l. per annum for the rest of the years. But I found no fault to him himself, but shall when they come to be read at the Board.

We did also call at Limehouse to view two Busses that are building, that being a thing we are now very hot upon. Our call was to see what dimensions they are of, being 50 feet by the keel and about 60 tons.

Home and did a little business, and so taking Mr. Pett by the way, we walked to the Temple, in our way seeing one of the Russia Embassador’s coaches go along, with his footmen not in liverys, but their country habits; one of one colour and another of another, which was very strange.

At the Temple spoke with Mr. Turner and Calthrop, and so walked home again, being in some pain through the cold which I have got to-day by water, which troubles me.

At the office doing business a good while, and so home and had a posset, and so to bed.

21 Annotations

First Reading

Jeannine  •  Link

"though I perceive great neglect and indifference in all the King’s officers in what they do for the King"....I am wondering what Sam is thinking here, indifference to the King as a person? indifference for lack of pay? not liking their work? Any thoughts?

Terry F  •  Link

Perhaps, Jeannine, his ongoing theme of their indifferent care about getting the best materials for the best prices -- in the background is Sam's concern about conflicts of interest, monopolistic practices as well as sloppy work in holding suppliers to specs -- he always characterizing his own best efforts as expended for the welfare of the King.

Terry F  •  Link

Why should Pepys imagine uniformed footmen the universal norm?
Or, I guess, why shouldn't he?!

(Odd that "livery" means the opposite of a constrained uniformity, according to its "ETYMOLOGY: Middle English liveri, from Old French livree, delivery, from feminine past participle of livrer, to deliver, from Latin liberare, to free, from liber, free."…

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Totally bored out their skulls and to top that, it bleeding be cold enough to "***** ****". And as J Evelyn dothe say, there be chunks[ "...greate flakes of yce incompassing our Boate..."] of ice creating a shipping Hazard.
"...though I perceive great neglect and indifference in all the King’s officers in what they do for the King..." They have no heart for the job while Mr Samuell Pepis be taking down data as the hofficers be lifting up ice covered pines and putting a string around, marked off in inches then taking another chain and be measuring the length of same meanwhile they not be getting a sip of that Brandy to warm the cockles of their little 'earts. I can 'ear it now haveing worked in those conditions while the Colonel be sitting out of that icy easterly wind, blowing off the Tems. Dah ! Samuell dothe not say that he be standing alee of the artic winds.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"...much against my will, to Deptford..." Enjoying the remodeled house and Bess' charms a bit too much, eh old workaholic? Or was it just too darned cold this morning.

A 1300L payoff in one year, 150L in others...?

"Twas a busy year." Peter notes solemnly.

Maybe it was the color...colour coding of the Russian footmen that seemed so strange.


Pity we can't get Bess' reaction to Sam's illnesses. I suspect Sam's fairly stubborn in words about denying ills and pain to her however much he may relate to us in private, but his body language was probably the typical male-that of a little boy with cold or boo-boo seeking Mom's hugs, in his case, along with some entirely understandable and legitimate fear. One might suspect she'd be inclined to anxiety given his medical history but it's difficult at best to tell. He's showed sympathy and concern for her illnesses in the past and he's not the sort not to complain if she were ignoring his...

OzStu  •  Link

" his allowing himself 1300 for one year’s looking to the business of the Chest"
I did wonder if the 1300 is some sort of scanning error since it seems a phenomenal amount of money if pounds, but there is no monetary unit shown.
Sounds as though he's biding his time to stitch up Pett in a big way in front of the rest of the Board. I hope that he manages to do this without seeming vindictive...

Terry F  •  Link

Not a fully pleasing day for Sam'l: he was

- dragooned by Mr. Pett to go to Deptford;
- disturbed by what he sees Wood (Batten's co-conspirator) and others do;
- displeased with Pett's Chest accounts;
- found the Russian Ambassador's entourage very strange;
- was in pain at the cold he had got.

Thank God he had a posset!

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Thanks for the re-introduction to the rules.
"Instrument my Two Foot Joint Rule" fo figuring distances and other math's
page 23 will tell Sam which mast be good for the different jobs.

quote "Suppose a Ship of 300 Tuns be 29 foot at the Beam, if her main mast be 24 inches in Diameter, the length of it['s] mast be 24 yards, for every inch of thickness is allowed a yard in length [i.e.] [inch in diam. for a yard ln length] " more follows for those that want to stand around while the ice be taking hold.

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

'...we are now very hot upon.." Samuell, it be freezing outside need a hot posset.

Terry F  •  Link

1300 is a scanning error for 3001 = £300,
and even £159 p.a., still is WAY too much for what Pett does(n't do), esp. for our man, who is worth "660l., or thereabouts," but does more than Commissioner Pett for the good of the King (and we have Samuel Pepys's word for it).

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

"...holding suppliers to specs ..." so wot be wrong with toilet bowls be a thousand Dollars and then don't fit.

Where There be money, there be someone absconding with it. Churchill was asked once why all that money for food for the troops, and his reply be of the order of "much of it be in the back streets being sold,"
60 jeeps/day were being stolen in WWII Ero. While the soldiers be dying at the front and there be no jeeps to rescue the injured and take them back to the medics.

Pauline  •  Link

‘…we are now very hot upon..”
Thanks A. S. (Bitingly) for highlighting this phrase. Ol' Sam slips some of these modernisms and current fad talk right by me!

Firenze  •  Link

Indifference: I think the meaning is more 'of poor quality' as in 'we had an indifferent dinner'. I don't doubt that part of the problem is that the officers are indifferent to the indifference of their work.

Mary  •  Link

" much against my will"

It is the going by water that is so much against Sam's will. He fears a chill and is complaining by the end of the day that this is exactly what has happened. Had they travelled on foot or gone by coach he would have been less concerned for his kidneys.

Terry F  •  Link

"by water, much against my will"

Mary, surely you are right, and have explained it, and after the boat trip he drinks a *warm* morning draft.

He's been going to Deptford about the remodeling every little whipstitch lately, but today it's just too darned cold (here Robert Gertz is correct) to go except by foot; and when he gets there he surveys with pleasure the New England masts (surely Eastern white pine).

He was dragooned by Pett to go by water, not to go to Deptford.

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

"...That done, to the Globe..." be this a pub in the memory of the said Bard.,could it be near the site [sight]of the ashes of the olde stage.
I concur that Sam did not want to sail on the Tems, it be cold and scary with all that floating yce. Nicer to walk briskly or better yet to be inside of a coach with a nice blanket around ones knees [and kidneys].

Second Reading

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Jeannine: "though I perceive great neglect and indifference in all the King’s officers in what they do for the King"....I am wondering what Sam is thinking here, indifference to the King as a person? indifference for lack of pay? not liking their work? Any thoughts?

Bureaucratic indifference and incompetence. Sam, by contrast, sees himself as a responsible worker. He may be, by comparison, or is he just blowing his own horn?

Bryan  •  Link

"He may be, by comparison, or is he just blowing his own horn?"
Louise, surely history has given us a clear answer to that question.

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

OED has:

‘hot, adj. < A word inherited from Germanic.
. . II. Extended uses.
8. Excited (originally with reference to the attendant increase in bodily heat).
a. Of a person, action, etc.: characterized by intensity of feeling; fervent, passionate; zealous, eager, keen . .
. . 1667 S. Pepys Diary 12 July (1974) VIII. 332 The Duke of hot for it.
1716 D. Ryder Diary 15 Aug. (1939) 296 Brother William is very hot upon it and would fain have it done out of hand . . ‘

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