Sunday 14 June 1663

(Lord’s day). Lay long in bed. So up and to church. Then to dinner, and Tom dined with me, who I think grows a very thriving man, as he himself tells me.

He tells me that his man John has got a wife, and for that he intends to part with him, which I am sorry for, and then that Mr. Armiger comes to be a constant lodger at his house, and he says has money in his purse and will be a good paymaster, but I do much doubt it.

He being gone, I up and sending my people to church, my wife and I did even our reckonings, and had a great deal of serious talk, wherein I took occasion to give her hints of the necessity of our saving all we can. I do see great cause every day to curse the time that ever I did give way to the taking of a woman for her, though I could never have had a better, and also the letting of her learn to dance, by both which her mind is so devilishly taken off her business and minding her occasions, and besides has got such an opinion in her of my being jealous, that it is never to be removed, I fear, nor hardly my trouble that attends it; but I must have patience.

I did give her 40s. to carry into the country tomorrow with her, whereof 15s. is to go for the coach-hire for her and Ashwell, there being 20s. paid here already in earnest.

In the evening our discourse turned to great content and love, and I hope that after a little forgetting our late differences, and being a while absent one from another, we shall come to agree as well as ever.

So to Sir W. Pen’s to visit him, and finding him alone, sent for my wife, who is in her riding-suit, to see him, which she hath not done these many months I think. By and by in comes Sir J. Minnes and Sir W. Batten, and so we sat talking. Among other things, Sir J. Minnes brought many fine expressions of Chaucer, which he doats on mightily, and without doubt he is a very fine poet.1

Sir W. Pen continues lame of the gout, that he cannot rise from his chair. So after staying an hour with him, we went home and to supper, and so to prayers and bed.

25 Annotations

First Reading

Australian Susan  •  Link

Today is Trinity Sunday (which Sam doesn't mention). The Lessons he would have heard were Genesis Chapter 1 and Matthew Chapter 3.

Stolzi  •  Link

"such an opinion in her of me being jealous"?

Sam! You WERE! You ARE!

No good coming over all righteous and misunderstood now.

TerryF  •  Link

"but I must have patience. I did give her 40s. &c."

As though he were paying penance.

(He does not say "I gave"....)

Pauline  •  Link

'Sam! You WERE! You ARE!'
Perhaps he admits it with "my trouble that attends it." But, yes, very much forgetting that he has told us again and again these past weeks how wracked he was with jealousy.

Robert Gertz  •  Link


"I inspired Dryden...I inspired Dryden. Heh, heh." Sam sings happily.

He inspired Dryden...? Chaucer glares.


Sounds like a charming evening...Bess in her pretty riding suit, good conversation in which for once Sir John gets to show off his scholarship. Excepting poor Sir Will P and his gout, a grand time. Wonder if Bess got to join the Chaucer discussion.

"I really think the Wife of Bath is Chaucer's outstanding character. The female equivalent of Falstaff...Don't you think, Sam'l? Sir John?"

"Ha, yes Mrs. Pepys. Exactly so." Sir John beams. "Now if Shakespeare had written 'Merry Wives' with her as Fat Jack's love interest..."

"Who's Bath and what's that about his wife?" Batten hisses to Penn.


Robert Gertz  •  Link

So I take it Sam's fear of Bess perceiving his jealousy being that it gives her a little power in the relationship?

TerryF  •  Link

Evidently, RG, he's counting on her forgetting...


by: John Dryden [emended]

Seek not the cause why sullen Spring
So long delays her flowers to bear;
Why warbling birds forget to sing,
And winter storms invert the year:
[Bess] is gone; and fate provides
To make it Spring where she resides.

[Bess] is gone, the cruel fair;
She cast not back a pitying eye:
But left her lover in despair
To sigh, to languish, and to die:
Ah! how can those fair eyes endure
To give the wounds they will not cure!

Great God of Love, why hast thou made
A face that can all hearts command,
That all religions can invade,
And change the laws of every land?
Where thou hadst plac'd such power before,
Thou shouldst have made her mercy more.

When [Bess] to the temple comes,
Adoring crowds before her fall;
She can restore the dead from tombs
And every life but mine recall.
I only am by Love design'd
To be the victim for mankind.…

dirk  •  Link

The Rev. Josselin's weather report:

"After much rain and great floods, continually wet from April to this time, viz. 19. April(.) good store of grass on most grounds, god good to me in the Sabbath, preached of love, god warm my heart with it, to himself. I heard nothing from the Court this week of any trouble for which I bless god."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Excellent choice of poem, Terry...

Pity if it's post-1663, I can just imagine Sam reciting it, a pathetic expression...

"...When [Bess] to the temple comes,
Adoring crowds before her fall;
She can restore the dead from tombs
And every life but mine recall.
I only am by Love design’d
To be the victim for mankind."

"Oh..." rapt expression.

"Yes. It only summarizes the burning emptiness of my poor lonely heart." Sam sighs.

"Oh, Mr. Pepys..." Penn's next new maid, the lovely Betty shakes her head as Sam foldes his sheets of paper.

"Yes. You see, Betty. A Clerk of the Acts is like any other man. Same hopes, same dreams...Only a Clerk of the Arts is more...Lonely."

"Oh, Mr.Pepys..."

"Oh, beautious Betty. Pity a lost and lonely soul, abandoned by its mate. Oh, sweet Betty."

"Oh...Mr. Pepys?!"


celtcahill  •  Link


For getting married ??

Jealousy ???

This family has a problem with that

Clement  •  Link

sacked for getting married

I am also confused about how marriage would damage John's job performance, but there maybe something obvious to Sam since he doesn't explain further. Any ideas? Surely it's not simply because Tom is jealous.

Mary  •  Link

sacked for getting married.

Perhaps this sounds harsher than it really is. If, for example, part of John's job description is that he lives in, the acquisition of a wife might prove difficult in point of lodging. We just don't know enough about the terms of his employment to be able to judge whether Tom's behavious is reasonable, unreasonable, purely practical or driven by emotion.

John M  •  Link

Sacked for getting married

John's offence may be that he has married without first seeking his master's permission. A master truly was the head of the household. Such was the hierarchical nature of their society.

Bradford  •  Link

Let us not, like some unprincipl'd members of the press or clergy, read only one portion of a statement (or verse) and omit another. Pepys says that Elizabeth

"besides has got such an opinion in her of my being jealous, that it is never to be removed, I fear, @nor hardly my trouble that attends it;@ but I must have patience."

It would appear that he is saying that Elizabeth's perception of his jealousy, and the fact of his jealousy itself, "nor hardly" could ever be removed. ("What, never?" "Well, hardly ever," for you G&S mavens.)
But he scurries past that, and counsels himself to be patient, which manages---o, incredible mixedness of human motives!---to be both good advice and condescending at the same time.

dirk  •  Link

Sacked for getting married

It could simply be that, being a married man now, might be less available for the job -- not 24/7 any more...

in Aqua scripto  •  Link

Apprentices and hired help were always at the whim of their employer, even in the 50's the Armed services would forbid marriage. One had to seek permission of thy C in C for the right to have a legal spouse [ a good reason be that thee have already started population explosion], one could aways have a substitute as long as thee were ready and able to carrying thy weapon , if not and thee reported to the MO , then thee were charged with damaging Military property.
Also Women married, would fail to get work because of the fear of not being at the beck and call of an Employer, 'first' Question asked be "will thee be havin' a kid ? [baby not a baby goat]" .
People were and still are at the mercy of those that employ yee, that is one of the reasons Maisters love the credit card , it has the yanking rope attached.
Remember Sandwich was not informed of Samuells permanent involvement until he moved into the Axe, that garret was about a blind eye to Samuel extra curricular activity. Known but not proven

Paul Dyson  •  Link

Sacked for getting married

Only last week I heard of a young woman being asked at interview with an English legal firm whether she expected to have any spells of leave. As it happens she is unable to have children, so her answer was "No". She was appointed.

Patricia  •  Link

In the first part of the last century, where I live, women teachers had to quit their jobs when they got married, but men could marry and retain their jobs.
It's illegal now to ask a job applicant if she's pregnant or planning to become pregnant, but people still do it. It happened to my DIL just last week. (Not pregnancy--the question by job interviewer.)

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"Mr. Armiger comes to be a constant lodger at his house, and he says has money in his purse and will be a good paymaster, but I do much doubt it."

Two Armigers (father and son) owed considerable sons (£74 altogether) to Tom Pepys at his death. (Per L&M footnote)

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"Sir J. Minnes brought many fine expressions of Chaucer, which he doats on mightily"

Chaucer's reputation stood high at the time, and Mennes had published imitations of him: Musarum Deliciae (1655), pp. 85+. Pepys later made a small collection of Chaucerian MSS; his collation of them may be found inserted in the back of his copy: PL 2365. He read Chaucer at bedtime and aloud:… Pepys also came to possess an engraved portrait of the poet: PL 2973, p. 393. From letters between Dryden and Samuel Pepys (who had known one another at Cambridge) it appears that Pepys suggested the ‘Good Parson’ for the poet's "Fables Ancient and Modern."…
(Per L&M footnote)

Bill  •  Link

Dryden [in a letter to Pepys in 1699] describes how Pepys suggested the Parson in Chaucer’s ‘Canterbury Tales’ as a source of inspiration, and has duly translated the ‘Character of a Good Parson’ (to be included in his publication of 1700, ‘Fables Ancient and Modern: translated into verse, from Homer, Ovid, Boccace & Chaucer, with original poems’):

Pepys replies to Dryden, on the same sheet of paper, highly grateful for this kindness and invites him over for a lunch of ‘cold chicken and a sallade, any noone after Sunday.’
---Magdalene College Libraries.…

Pirate Queen  •  Link

sacked for getting married
Well into the 20th century, it was highly, highly unusual for servants of well-to-do households to be given permission to marry. To marry was to leave service, or to be ejected from it. By now we've all seen Downton Abbey, all 6 years of it, and I will point out that John and Anna Bates's situation as a married couple working in a household was really Not Done.

Third Reading

Ruslan  •  Link

Bill's Magdalene College Libraries link now forwards to a different domain.
For the sake of posterity, here is the new link:…

> By now we've all seen Downton Abbey...
Downton Abbey is a fantastic programme, yet in some respects it is highly unrealistic. For example, the easy interaction and conversation between the upstairs world of the family and their peers and the downstairs world of the hired help. That just didn’t happen.


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