Saturday 7 February 1662/63

Up and to my office, whither by agreement Mr. Coventry came before the time of sitting to confer about preparing an account of the extraordinary charge of the Navy since the King’s coming, more than is properly to be applied and called the Navy charge.

So by and by we sat, and so till noon. Then home to dinner, and in the afternoon some of us met again upon something relating to the victualling, and thence to my writing of letters late, and making my Alphabet to my new Navy book very pretty. And so after writing to my father by the post about the endeavour to come to a composition with my uncle, though a very bad one, desiring him to be contented therewith, I went home to supper and to bed.

34 Annotations

First Reading

Terry F  •  Link

"making my Alphabet to my new Navy book"

So the Navy book has an index?

Bradford  •  Link

So it would appear; without it, even this careful compilation would be a heap of facts you'd have to hunt through every time you wanted to find something.
But given the number of ships &c. named, anyone who has ever compiled even a modest index will not envy Pepys his task.

. . . the endeavour to come to a "composition: settlement, compromise agreement"---Companion, Large Glossary.

Terry F  •  Link

Or the Navy book has a table of contents?

Terry F  •  Link

Whichever, Bradford you are correct.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"... an account of the extraordinary charge of the Navy since the King’s coming, more than is properly to be applied and called the Navy charge..."

Hmmn...Sounds as though Charles' budget is to be balanced via swelling the Navy's costs.

Thank God that never happens in our enlightened age.

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Composition: There be 26 ways to use the word per OED then Modern Dictionary of the poorer sort has only 6.
4th form to adjust settle,reconcile
5th form to put oneself in a state of tranquility
then :
OED: composition 26 variations and there be 3 entries using S.Pepys as a reference.
11. The composing or settling (of differences, etc.). Obs.
a1654 SELDEN Eng. Epin. ii. § 19 Quiet composition of seditious tumults.
12. The settling of a debt, liability, or claim, by some mutual arrangement; compounding. composition of felony: see COMPOUND v. 9. Cf. 22-25.

1557 Order Hospitalls Fvijb, All debts owing to the Howse by composition.
1682 Lond. Gaz. No. 1686/4 That the said Debts may be satisfied without Composition or Abatement.

for musical use Samuell gets into the OED
:d. Music.
1666-7 PEPYS Diary 12 Feb., He..played..most admirably, and the composition most excellent

e. A musical production, a piece of music.
1666-7 PEPYS Diary 12 Feb., The whole composition is most excellent.
25. a. An agreement for the payment (or the payment by agreement) of a sum of money, in lieu of the discharge of some other obligation, or in a different way from that required by the original contract; a compounding; spec. an agreement by which a creditor accepts a certain proportion of a debt, in satisfaction, from an insolvent debtor.
The fines paid by Royalists under the Commonwealth were called Compositions of Delinquents.
then in
1667 PEPYS Diary 10 Sept., There is no such thing likely to be as a composition with my Lady Castlemaine [8 Sept., Lady Castlemaine is compounding for a pension].

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Robert G: ye dothe geste com digito Pollo et mano digito erecto.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"Deer Son,

Your letter of the 7th Was Got by us, your Dear Father and Mother with Grate Regret to hear of the Hard Deelings of your Uncle. But that we are Gratefull to the Lord that our pratey little House shall stay in Our Hands, we should wish His Wrath to Fall on Those Who Would Treat theer Family so.

On that, Your sister, silly a Girl as she is, did Have a idee..."

Paulina?...An idea?...Sam stares.
Several days before. Brampton...

"Why don't Sam'l have the Trices packed off to the Barbados land?" Paulina suggests, startling John in midrant against his treacherous, scheming relatives.

"He be an officer of the King's Navy, right? They do goes about pressing men for the ships, right?"

Hmmn...John eyes Margaret.


Mary  •  Link

"writing to my father by the post"

From time to time Sam specifies that he has sent letters 'by the post.' Presumably he is making a distinction between letters sent in this way and other letters that are sent either by safe hand or by the carrier.

Mary  •  Link

RG's prescient Paulina?

Although the pressing of men into naval service in time of war had long been sporadically practised, the heyday of the measure was not to be reached until the 18th century. Given that press gangs were licensed to 'recruit' in and around the ports of the country, Sam would presumably have had difficulty in disposing of the Trices in this way upon at least two counts.

Pedro  •  Link

“press gangs were licensed to ‘recruit’ in and around the ports of the country,”

This can be seen in relation to the present position in Tangier.

Raising fresh recruits was difficult. They were usually gathered in the West of England to be within marching distance of the embarkation ports of Falmouth and Plymouth. In 1665, it was suggested, although not put into practice, that recruits should be raised on the pretence that they were to serve in the Plymouth garrison – before being promptly shipped off to Tangier. The application of a press gang in the West Country raised 200 men who were thought to be of poor quality – a judgement which took into account that two of the new forced recruits were women.


Australian Susan  •  Link

This entry seems rather lack-lustre. Sam seems tired. Or depressed about the final outcome of the law suit maybe.

Terry F  •  Link

Pedro, thanks for the very nice reference to a fascination article by Dr John Wreglesworth (2005) on the issues dealt with in Tangier by England during and beyond the Diary period (involving Sam, but, yes, A.S., not in today's rather downbeat entry) -- provioning and populating it, constructing the Mole, defending it: "The garrison of Tangier has left minor footnotes in English history. It was made up of what were to be some of the oldest regiments in the British army. The troops in Tangier pioneered the use of new weapons such hand-grenades and the socket bayonet. Individuals associated with the garrison were to play significant roles in English history: Ensign John Churchill (the future Duke of Marlborough), Col. Percy Kirke (in the Monmouth Rebellion of 1685) and Admiral Arthur Herbert (who ferried William III to England in 1688)."…

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"com digito pollo"
Don't know much about "com digito pollo", know a lot about "arroz com pollo"

Todd Bernhardt  •  Link

re: Table of Contents or Index?

Terry, as someone who's done both, I can say with certainty that the latter is *much* harder to do manually than the former. Thank goodness for computers.

That said, it's a good question -- Bradford, do L&M give any guidance as to whether it was an index or TOC?

JWB  •  Link

Monday 23 June 1662 endnote:
"In 1662 was passed “An Act for providing of carriage by land and by water for the use of His Majesty’s Navy and Ordinance” (13-14 Gar. II., cap. 20), which gave power for impressing seamen, &c."
Repeat of my note on that entry:
1662 Impressment Act bursts Jamestown, Virginia real estate bubble:
“…in a letter from Morryson to Lord Clarendon, amounted only to the construction of four or five houses. He declared that the erection of this scanty number of buildings had entailed the loss of hundreds of people, apprehension of impressment having driven many mechanics from the Colony.”
Bruce, Philip A., Economic History of Virginia in the Seventeenth Century: An Inquiry into the Material Condition of the People, Based on Original and Contemporaneous Records

Terry F  •  Link

“com digito pollko" - Index / Table of contents

"with chicken-fingers" I take it? Perhaps meaning "chicken tracks" or cuneiform

Todd Bernhardt, I haven't your experience with both Index and TOC, but have seen others do the former BC (before computers), and did the latter for my doctoral dissertation; so, on second thought, I suggested perhaps Sam was doing the latter, but I didn't beat Bradford in posting it.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

making my Alphabet to my new Navy book

The book was sent for binding on Jan. 23,so this is likely to be something like an alphabetical Table of Contents slipped into the volume. Sam's copies of Mr. Holland's books were bound in December, so this must be a different compilation, perhap a reference volume of papers relating to the powers of the Clerk and other Navy officials, or lists of contractors to the Navy by type of supply, or procedures of the Navy office
(e.g., how to pay off ships), or maybe all of the above. Any suggestions as to the book's content?

Peter Bates  •  Link

" ... Tangier has left minor footnotes in English history ..."

There's an area of Taunton, UK, that's still called "Tangier". It was used in the 1680s as a camp for one of the regiments involved in the project. There used to be a street sign "Nearest Car Park: Tangier" - unremarkable to Tauntonians, but causing amusement when a photo was published in a national paper.

Terry F  •  Link

"Any suggestions as to the book’s content?"

Previously referred to as “sea manuscript”, “Navy manuscript”, “book manuscript”, “manuscript book”, “manuscript”, and “Navy collections” — though it did not survive, in a note to 9 January, 1663, L&M conjecture (shrewdly) that “it was a work of reference, with, e.g. lists of ships”, perhaps the draft version of “the book of ‘Naval Precedents’ he made in retirement after 1688.”…

E  •  Link

My guess is that Sam was referring to a simple alphabetical cross-reference to the page numbers for ships listed in his the Navy book, not a complete index to every possible key word. If the ships were listed in categories, or in some other non-alphabetical way, then finding one by name would be difficult without an index.

I note that he says he was making the Alphabet "very pretty", not that he was making the Alphabet itself. Presumably this prettifying was copying it out neatly rather than just drawing curlicues. Could it have been onto card for use as a bookmark? Would the inks of the day be able to withstand that sort of use?

Pauline  •  Link

Not Uncle Trice and Son
This settlement is not with the Trices, it is with Tom Pepys (and his son Tom)--older brother to John Pepys, Sam's dad. I wouldn't label them treacherous. Uncle Robert left a mess that allowed his brother Tom, who is older than brother John, to legally claim some items in Robert's estate.

Australian Susan  •  Link

Press gangs

Bit of family history: we have a letter from the late 18th century from a mother to her son in London. Writing from the busy port of Sunderland, the mother comments that a contemporary of her son (and known to him) had been picked up by the Navy and taken on board ship. His parents hired a boat and had themselves rowed round the Navy ships in the harbour until they found their son. They then paid 30 shillings to get him off the ship. The mother comments in her letter that she does not think the young man worth that much and that a spell in the Navy would have done him good. Presumably the same system of buying people out existed in Sam's time. I always wonder if the son, reading his mother's words, felt some unease as to what his fate would be if he was press-ganged when home on holiday.......

Bradford  •  Link

Sorry not to have been more specific and definite:

"alphabet: iii.105, index"

says the Companion Large Glossary, so the word slipped past us without discussion sometime last year.

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Alpha beta gama delta , the following may help/confuse
"All the afternoon finishing of the character, which I did and gave it my Lord, it being very handsomely done and a very good one in itself, but that not truly Alphabetical." his spy code type:…
Thence back again to the office, and there T. Hater and I did make an end of my alphabet, which did much please me.…

to the office again all the afternoon, Mr. Hater and I writing over my Alphabet fair, in which I took great pleasure to rule the lines and to have the capitall words wrote with red ink…
then todays entry.…

Paul Chapin  •  Link

"The troops in Tangier pioneered the use of new weapons such [as] hand-grenades"
Surely you have forgotten the use of the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch by King Arthur and his men in their battle against the fierce rabbit of Caerbannog:…

Sorry, OT, please ignore.

Terry F  •  Link

Perhaps a clue as to the Navy book's contents.

If it is an early draft of Pepys's later 'Naval Precedents,' a note about the latter: "The payment of officers during peace-time which was first instituted in 1668 may be regarded as the foundation of OUR permanent naval force. Pepysian MSS., vol. 2867, 'Naval Precedents,' p. 477,
17 July, 1668.1"… p.23.

dirk  •  Link

Letter from John Vassall and William Prideaux to Sandwich

Written from: Madrid
Date: 7 February 1663

The English residents at Malaga, upon occasion of the death of their late Consul Captain Edward Montagu, have unanimously agreed to solicit the King to appoint, as his successor, the writer John Vassall.

The joint writers add a representation of the sufferings of British commerce from "the private Picaroons" who infest the Coast of Portugal. All means of redress or prevention hitherto reported to have failed of success.

Bodleian Library…

dirk  •  Link

the death of their late Consul Captain Edward Montagu

Does anybody know which Edward Montagu this refers to?

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"" ... Tangier has left minor footnotes in English history ..." / There's an area of Taunton, UK, that's still called "Tangier". It was used in the 1680s as a camp for one of the regiments involved in the project. There used to be a street sign "Nearest Car Park: Tangier" - unremarkable to Tauntonians, but causing amusement when a photo was published in a national paper. "

Tangier, Virginia is a town in Accomack County, Virginia, United States, on Tangier Island in Chesapeake Bay. The population was 727 at the 2010 census. The majority of the original settlers were from South West England, and the tiny island community has attracted the attention of linguists because its people speak a unique English Restoration-era dialect of American English.…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"the extraordinary charge of the Navy since the King’s coming, more than is properly to be applied and called the Navy charge"

E.g. charges for garrisons, and freightage payable by merchants, which the Navy Board accounted for but which were not strictly naval expenses. Cf.… (L&M note)

Bill  •  Link

“about the endeavour to come to a composition with my uncle”

COMPOSITION, [among Tradesmen] is when a Debtor not being able to discharge his whole Debts, agrees with his Creditors to pay them a certain Sum of Money instead of all that is due.
---An Universal English Dictionary. N. Bailey, 1724.

Louise Hudson  •  Link

There is a comprehensive history called Pepys's Navy: Ships, Men and Warfare 1649-89
by J. D. Davies 

It has received excellent reviews.

It's available through Amazon.

Larry Moore  •  Link

To get a better sense of life in the British Navy a read of the book "Scurvy" by Stephen R Brown will be most enlightening. The disease of scurvy can not be detailed without describing what life was like on the ships. It is no wonder men were less than willing to join the navy when the shipboard conditions were undoubtedly well known. Here is the link to a review which gives a good sense of a fine book. If one wants to diet, read before meals.…

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