Wednesday 8 April 1663

Up betimes and to my office, and by and by, about 8 o’clock, to the Temple to Commissioner Pett lately come to town and discoursed about the affairs of our office, how ill they go through the corruption and folly of Sir W. Batten and Sir J. Minnes.

Thence by water to White Hall, to chappell; where preached Dr. Pierce, the famous man that preached the sermon so much cried up, before the King against the Papists.

His matter was the Devil tempting our Saviour, being carried into the Wilderness by the spirit. And he hath as much of natural eloquence as most men that ever I heard in my life, mixed with so much learning.

After sermon I went up and saw the ceremony of the Bishop of Peterborough’s paying homage upon the knee to the King, while Sir H. Bennet, Secretary, read the King’s grant of the Bishopric of Lincoln, to which he is translated. His name is Dr. Lany. Here I also saw the Duke of Monmouth, with his Order of the Garter, the first time I ever saw it.

I am told that the University of Cambridge did treat him a little while since with all the honour possible, with a comedy at Trinity College, and banquet; and made him Master of Arts there. All which, they say, the King took very well. Dr. Raynbow, Master of Magdalen, being now Vice-Chancellor.

Home by water to dinner, and with my father, wife, and Ashwell, after dinner, by water towards Woolwich, and in our way I bethought myself that we had left our poor little dog that followed us out of doors at the waterside, and God knows whether he be not lost, which did not only strike my wife into a great passion but I must confess myself also; more than was becoming me. We immediately returned, I taking another boat and with my father went to Woolwich, while they went back to find the dog.

I took my father on board the King’s pleasure boat and down to Woolwich, and walked to Greenwich thence and turning into the park to show my father the steps up the hill, we found my wife, her woman, and dog attending us, which made us all merry again, and so took boats, they to Deptford and so by land to Half-way house, I into the King’s yard and overlook them there, and eat and drank with them, and saw a company of seamen play drolly at our pence, and so home by water. I a little at the office, and so home to supper and to bed, after having Ashwell play my father and me a lesson upon her Tryangle.

33 Annotations

First Reading

TerryF  •  Link

"Dr. Pierce, the famous man that preached the sermon so much cried up, before the King against the Papists."

Another celebrity Lenten preacher, perhaps flacking for his published sermon still available via Early English Books Online: Pierce, Thomas, 1622-1691. Primitive rule of reformation delivered in a sermon before His Maiesty at Whitehall, Feb. 1, 1662 in vindication of our Church against the novelties of Rome by Tho. Pierce.…

* * *
Reading sermons was, in the 17th-18th centuries, a favorite evening and bedtime pastime for British family men, who were responsible for the religious education of their household. For their part, English women who could read no foreign language would, 20 years on, be given their own reading medium, the novel (Love Letters Between a Nobleman and his Sister [1683] by Aphra Behn, after which more.).…

* * *

The text of Dr. Pierce's sermon today is Matt.4: [1] Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. [2] And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred. [3] And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. [4] But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. [5] Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, [6] And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. [7] Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. [8] Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; [9] And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. [10] Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. [11] Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

Bradford  •  Link

The same little black dog that, once upon a time, Sam wanted to fling out the window for fouling the house? Pets do apparently have a beneficial affect on blood pressure.
There's Ashwell tingling her triangle again, Stolzi.
Is this not the most favorable comment Pepys has made about a divine and his sermon in some long while?

jeannine  •  Link

"I bethought myself that we had left our poor little dog that followed us out of doors at the waterside, and God knows whether he be not lost, which did not only strike my wife into a great passion but I must confess myself also; more than was becoming me."
As any pet owner can attest, the thought of losing a little friend can bring a fear (and tear) to even the most stoic. Hmmm, I wonder if Sam would have been as upset about losing Pall, John, Thomas, etc.??? for as we joke about our beloved pet...."pets are like family, except you actually like them"......

TerryF  •  Link

"And he hath as much of natural eloquence as most men that ever I heard in my life, mixed with so much learning."

This is the 25th entry in which Pepys uses the phrase "in my life". Highest kudos for the divine and his sermon, indeed, Bradford.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Interesting that Sam's made no mention of happy times with the poor little dog. But considering he never mentions Bess by name or sees fit to transcribe her own words in conversation...

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Popstar of the day: just Wednesday in Lent, must get an ear full. "...where preached Dr. Pierce, the famous man that preached the sermon so much cried up..."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

University of Cambridge, Office of the Vice-Chancellor...

"Right..." Raynbow sighs to his aide, having just seen Monmouth off with cheerful wave and deep bow. "So much for that day's groveling. Any other bastards of the royal gigilo whose rear we can kiss?"

dirk  •  Link

the Duke of Monmouth

"I am told that the University of Cambridge did treat him a little while since with all the honour possible [...] and made him Master of Arts there."

"Doctor Honoris Causa" -- Like many modern honorary doctorates, one might wonder what the Duke had done to deserve it...

If this is James Crofts "Scott" (1649-1685), Charles' illegitimate son by Lucy Walter (1630-1658), created Duke of Monmouth, the boy is barely 14
years old!

Robert Gertz  •  Link

I'm trying to picture old John Pepys watching Sam and Bess sighing and mooning over dear doogie.

"Ummn. Poopsie means so much to Bess, Father. Ummn..."

"Right..." John nods, having watched Sam joyfully hug and kiss the recovered bit of a dog.

Unless it be some kind of rat or something...Like no useful dog he's ever seen.

"Oh...Sam'l. Mon Dieu, you know missed our lil' Poopsie as much as I did." Bess frowns, then beams. "Oh, father-in-law you must hear the tale of how our dear little Poopsie got his name. Sam'l, tell your papa how you said you were going to fling our sweet little Poopsie out the window and all..."

Sounds about what I'd do with the thing right now, John notes to himself. Though I'd make it sure and dump the thing in the Thames as we row back...

"Ummn...Well. Actually, Father, it is a rather funny story...Ummn..."

"Right. Poopsie for pooping...I think I get it. Right." John nods.

Tom did warn me the lad was growing strange. Led on by that French hussy into the wicked ways of this wicked court, no doubt about it.

Nice material he's wearin' though...Thank God the boy has my eye for good fabric.

dirk  •  Link

the doggy

As the saying goes: "any man who loves a dog can't be all bad."

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

They doth say the devil be in the details :"Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him."

Paul Chapin  •  Link

The Duke of Monmouth
Tomorrow (9 April 1663) is his 14th birthday. In less than two weeks, on 20 April, he will be married. And he has already received his Master's from Cambridge. Precocious fellow.

Leo Starrenburg  •  Link

"and saw a company of seamen play drolly at our pence..."

I need help on this one, did the sailors mock Samuel and his party or did they join them for dinner with Sam footing the bill ?

Mary  •  Link

the company of seamen played drolly .....

at ninepins, according to the L&M reading.

J A Gioia  •  Link

saw a company of seamen play drolly at our pence

i'll defer to l&m here, though it struck me that pepys' party paid the sailors to play some music, which they did drolly (some riddims from the west indies, per'aps?). note that ashwell will 'play my father and me a lesson' later that eve.

Mary  •  Link

The Duke of Monmouth's MA.

Although Monmouth's degree was certainly awarded at a very tender age 'honoris causa' it was not so many years since students had been admitted to the university much younger than we are used to thinking of. Francis Bacon went up at the age of 12 years, as did the poet, Andrew Marvell. By the latter part of the 17th century it seems to have been more usual for students to matriculate in their later 'teens, but this early award of a master's degree may not have appeared grotesquely incongruous at the time.

A. Hamilton  •  Link

Our Pence
If L&M reads this as "nine pins" that suggests a transcription error in Wheatley. Seems plausible.

TerryF  •  Link

Also restored with the Monarchy is official antisemitism. Today in the House of Commons:.

Sumptuary Laws, &c.

The House then resumed the Debate upon the last Proposal from the Committee appointed to provide Sumptuary Laws, and to prevent Encroachments in Trade by Jews, and French, and other Foreigners.

Which Proposal was read; and, upon Debate, amended; and was as followeth; viz.
"That his Majesty be humbly desired by the House, That no Consulship be continued, or hereafter granted, in any Place, but at the Desire of the respective Merchants trading to that Place; and at such Allowances and Charges only as the Merchants shall consent to give them."

The Question being put, To agree to the Proposal, so amended;
It was resolved in the Affirmative.

From: 'House of Commons Journal Volume 8: 8 April 1663',
Journal of the House of Commons: volume 8: 1660-1667 (1802), p. 468. URL:…"
Date accessed: 08 April 2006.

* * *

Historical background:

"To finance his war to conquer Wales, Edward I of England taxed the Jewish moneylenders. When the Jews could no longer pay, they were accused of disloyalty. Already restricted to a limited number of occupations, the Jews saw Edward abolish their "privilege" to lend money, choke their movements and activities and were forced to wear a yellow patch.
The heads of Jewish households were then arrested, over 300 of them taken to the Tower of London and executed, while others killed in their homes. The complete banishment of all Jews from the country in 1290 led to thousands killed and drowned while fleeing and the absence of Jews from England for three and a half centuries, until 1655, when Oliver Cromwell reversed the policy."…"

The background of this is recalled in Chaucer's Prioresses tale's wail
"O yonge Hugh of Lyncoln, slayn also/ With cursed Jewes" in 1255; such blood libel having set off a pogrom against Jews in Lincoln and King Henry III [Edward I's father] had 91 Jews of Lincoln seized and sent to London, where eighteen of them were executed "and the remainder lingered in prison until Richard, Earl of Cornwall, who was in possession of the Jewry at the time, made terms for them."…

A century before that, in Suffolk, also on the East coast of England, Master Hugo had carved the antisemitic tract in walrus ivory known as "The Bury St. Edmunds Cross," which has resided since the 1960's at the Cloisters Museum in upper Manhattan, NYC, where I have studied it more than once.….

jeannine  •  Link

"Francis Bacon went up at the age of 12 years, as did the poet, Andrew Marvell."
Mary, thanks for the insightful information. History will prove that Bacon and Marvell had talent, intelligence and dilgence, but unfortunately for Monmouth, who had little of the above talents and traits, his degree will only add to his vanity and not his accomplishments. It's actually quite sad to see Charles putting him in the position of "entitlement", which in many ways will be used against him by the son (who some historians still doubt is his given Lucy Walter's reputation) who he gave so much to. A painful lesson in how not to raise a child. One can only wonder how Monmouth may have turned out if he was raised to "work" for his credentials like the rest of us.

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

"restored with the Monarchy is official antisemitism"
What be restored with a mon[o]__archy [rule alone] as against the previous two decades an_archy, no rule or close too that, was that one opinion be allowed only, so dissenting opinions would be stomped on, see the other "Christians" that were set upon too, no dissenting by any one, no matter what, would be terminated.
If thy read the dailies of the houses of, then thy will see the name of the game is Monopoly in all forms. One has to have the correct authority and connections to make a rich living, so any that infinged on those [ the word be greed] got stomped on. Controls, controls, so bakshish be rife. That be why 2000 dissenting ex-parsons be spouting in the streets.
You may call it anti-semitism, but it be anti every opposing opinion.
It be the time to keep thy thoughts to thy self, especially if thy be making good monies, that does bring out the worse in the have nots.
Of course this opinion will rile some.
we all be filtered differently.

TerryF  •  Link

I do call it antisemitism,I.A.S., because the Jews in question were in many cases no more "foreigners" than had been many Royalists in their turn; as you say, the wheel turns and now we have "The Last King" , or monarch, since the only alternative to monarchy isn't anarchy, as what happened after Jas. II shows.

TerryF  •  Link

Why Jews may have been regarded as "foreigners" despite all else:

Jews in diaspora had maintained contact with other communities and with the yeshivot (rabbinical schools) in Babylonia and Palestine and, in the middle ages, with centers of learning in Cairo and Baghdad and Cordova. This far-flung network of connections provided opportunities for a landless people to subsist as merchants. This occupation was socially anomalous in the middle ages and further stigmatized Jews. Here is some of what Henri Pirenne says about the merchant class in the middle ages:

"It was in the course of the tenth century that there reappeared in continental Europe a class of professional merchants whose progress, very slow at first, gathered speed as the following century moved forward. The increase in population, which began to be manifest at the same era, is certainly in direct relation to this phenomenon. It had as a result the detaching from the land an increasingly important number of individuals and committing them to that roving and hazardous existence which, in every agricultural civilization, is the lot of those who no longer find themselves with their roots in/ the soil. (80-81).

"The legal status of the merchants eventually gave them a thoroughly singular place in that society which they astonished in so many respects. By virtue of the wandering existence they led, they were everywhere/ regarded as foreigners. No one knew the origins of these eternal travelers....Just as agrarian civilization had made of the peasant a man whose normal state was servitude, trade made of the merchant a man whose normal condition was liberty. From that time on, ...he was answerable only to public jurisdiction....

"Public authority at the same time took him under its protection. The local princes whose task it was to preserve, in their territories, peace and public order--to which pertained the policing of the highways and the safeguarding of travellers--extended their tutelage over the merchants. (88-89)

*Medieval Cities: Their Origins and the Revival of Trade*. Henri Pirenne. Tr. Frank D. Halsey. [1925] 1969, Princeton University Press; Garden City, N.Y.…

Hamish  •  Link

For those who like historical fiction, our Sam has a cameo role in Neal Stephenson's book Quicksilver.
Also appearing are the Duke of Monmouth (at Trinity College), Newton, Leibniz, and others.…

Australian Susan  •  Link

The Black Death was blamed on Jews: they were supposed to have poisoned wells. Anti-semitism is a dirty undercurrent of European history for centuries (the blood libel fiction was still being aired at the beginning of the 20th century) breaking forth in an appalling tide of hate in the Shoah less than a hundred years ago.
Another medieval horror was the mass suicide of Jews in Clifford's Tower in York in the 12th century - the citizenry of York then burnt the wooden structure down (the present stone castle post-dates this). I had friends with whom I was at University at York in the 1970s. They were liberal Jews and married first in a civil ceremony in York, before a Synagogue ceremony in Leeds. Many of their Jewish guests would not travel to York.
Unfortunately, I am fairly sure Sam would have had the unthinking antisemitism of his time as part of his inherited world view, but I like to think that if he had met any Jews socially or through business, he would have been prepared to be educated out of these views. But we just don't know.

Bradford  •  Link

As Terry notes, "This is the 25th entry in which Pepys uses the phrase 'in my life'." But he has more than one precedent in English writing, such as the early travel-writer Thomas Coryat of Odcombe, recounting his 1608 adventures in the marvelously denominated "Coryat's Crudities hastily gobbled up in five months travells in France, Savoy, Italy . . . and the Netherlands," leaving out a few sites. His six weeks in Venice were "the sweetest time for so much that ever I spent in my life," which leaves him groping for super-superlatives on the site of "Troy," then Constantinople, then Jerusalem. . . . Perhaps the moral is that, if you were a relatively young person at this period, you would constantly be stumbling up against the most marvelous A, B, or C you've ever experienced. The flipside, of course, is when it's the worst X, Y, or Z you've ever known, as in "This has been the worst day I've ever seen in my life!" to which a still small voice replies, "So far."

dirk  •  Link


Yes, in a sense. It's about measures affecting the Jews -- but we should be careful when we apply the word "antisemitism" and its modern connotations to this 17th c. situation.

To quote from the H of C text, it's all "to prevent Encroachments in Trade by Jews, and French, and other Foreigners". So, by the same logic this could be termed "antifrenchism" and/or "antiforeignerism" -- or more appropriately general "xenophobia".

A degree of mistrust (calling it "xenophobia" might be too harsh) between Britain and the "continent" was not uncommon untill some decades ago -- and maybe even today it hasn't disappeared comletely...

So, plus ça change...

TerryF  •  Link


Dirk, assuming we are not talking about a 21st-century notion, what "Encroachments in Trade" by Jews were involved? Did the Jews represent the interests of a foreign/competitive power, like the French? Was lumping them together as equally "foreign" a way of sanitizing an ancient, endemic suspicion of Jews as guilty of the crimes imputed to them that I and Australian Susan remind us of?

dirk  •  Link

Jews in England

For a good basic discussion of the subject, see:

"From expulsion to emancipation - Henry Cohn presents a brief history of British Jewry"

[search for "Henry Cohn"]

in Aqua Scripto  •  Link

Rule of the Day be : Render unto Cesar, what be Cesar's and render unto the Vicars theirs.
If ye not be for ME [CII]on bended Knee and attending Services on a Sunday and participating in the partaking of the priests offering, then thee not be able to have the bene_fits that I hold in reserve for my buddies, and you Will donate extras for the Coffers, otherwise it be the coffin.
Religion be a serious matter, only the Common prayer group be allowed , there be exceptions , The Huguenots got a waiver, The Catholiques associated with Queen and Queen Mother have a waiver too, And Jews got a waiver too to have their own Place of Worship, all the complaining dissenting ones had places but were not allowed, except that there be too many to put all in the nick.
Even Norfolk [Duke] and his ilke had to Keep quite about their hidden Jesuits Priests, otherwise Foreign educated english priests be expelled. There be only one way to get the benefits of a born Citizen, Right of vote [coin and a hearth], be a member of P and have sinicures of Church and state, and that be to, acquiesce and pledge thy allegence and prove weekly that be worthy and be by attending thy local pew and make sure thy preacher knows that that thee be there and fill the plate.
The 'nick' be filled disgruntled dissenting ones , e.g. Bunyon, Fox and street noise makers, besides the bad debt ones and other ruffians.

Pedro  •  Link

“to prevent Encroachments in Trade by Jews, and French, and other Foreigners.”

Maybe, in this instance, the mention of Jews is more due to their expertise in commerce, than on any religious grounds. Cromwell’s “re-admission” of Jews in 1655, may have been for commercial purposes, “English Jews” being very useful for English trade. However, other Jews may be acting on behalf of other countries.

Dirk mentions “a degree of mistrust …between Britain and the “continent” … maybe even today it hasn’t disappeared completely.”

At this point in the Diary there is a great frustration and mistrust amongst the Merchants with their treatment in Portugal. Since Cromwell’s Trade Treaty in 1654, the English have provided all that they had promised, while the Portuguese have used every trick in the book to renege on their commitments. The same is happening with the Marriage Treaty.

Things don’t change, we still have mistrust in the European Community when others do not play to the rules (English beef).

Terry F  •  Link

Extract from a letter about Potato cultivation sent to Robert Boyle

An Extract of a letter about Potatos written to Mr Boyle and read in the [Royal] Society April.8.1663…

Second Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

" ... Cromwell’s “re-admission” of Jews in 1655, may have been for commercial purposes, “English Jews” being very useful for English trade. ..." I'm no expert on this, but according to…
... A small settlement of Jews from Spain and Portugal, fleeing the Inquisition, had reached London via Amsterdam during King Charles I's reign. Cromwell was to employ them in his secret service and, eventually, he made Abraham Israel Carvajal, their official leader, the first English Jew. In 1655, at a conference led by Rabbi Menasseh Bell Israel, it was finally agreed that English Law did not forbid the settlement of Jews.

And when Oliver Cromwell needed money to pay his large, well-equipped army in the 17th century, he turned to the wealthy Jews of Amsterdam for his financing. To get money to pay his men, he had to agree to let the Jews back into England. (The story is contained in the Encyclopaedia Judaica. The article states that Cromwell was "a humane man.")

In 1656, Oliver Cromwell spoke of the debt newly-Protestant England owed the Jews. In England, he said, the Jews would finally see Christianity in its true form and embrace it. Despite Cromwell’s prediction, there was no mass conversion of Jews to Christianity in England or in any other Protestant region.

NO SPOILER ALERT NEEDED: During the first half of the 17th century, millenarian ideas of the approach of the Messianic time were popular. They included ideas of the redemption of the Jews and their return to the land of Israel, with independent sovereignty. The apocalyptic year was identified by Christian authors as 1666 and millenarianism was widespread in England. This belief was so prevalent that Manasseh ben Israel, in his letter to Oliver Cromwell and the Rump Parliament, appealed to it as a reason to readmit Jews into England, saying, "[T]he opinions of many Christians and mine do concur herein, that we both believe that the restoring time of our Nation into their native country is very near at hand."

So I don't think it was trade Cromwell wanted. He was trying to strike a bargain with God to spare the English when the 1666 Judgment Day came.

Sasha Clarkson  •  Link

The Oxford/Cambridge Mater of Arts was not and is not a postgraduate degree in the sense that it is at most modern universities: in Pepys' day it was the main undergraduate degree. In the following centuries, the (originally) intermediate degree known as the baccalaureate gradually became more important, and became the main undergraduate qualification.

MA is not a qualification, but a rank, denoting a full voting member of the University.…

NB 'Bachelor' as in a degree has a different linguistic root to 'bachelor' as in an unmarried man, but the two words merged in English.……

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