Sunday 20 September 1663

(Lord’s day). Up, and finding my father somewhat better, walked to Huntingdon church, where in my Lord’s pew, with the young ladies, by my Lord’s own showing me the place, I stayed the sermon, and so to Hinchingbroke, walking with Mr. Shepley and Dr. King, whom they account a witty man here, as well as a good physician, and there my Lord took me with the rest of the company, and singly demanded my opinion in the walks in his garden, about the bringing of the crooked wall on the mount to a shape; and so to dinner, there being Collonel Williams and much other company, and a noble dinner. But having before got my Lord’s warrant for travelling to-day, there being a proclamation read yesterday against it at Huntingdon, at which I am very glad, I took leave, leaving them at dinner, and walked alone to my father’s, and there, after a word or two to my father and mother, my wife and I mounted, and, with my father’s boy, upon a horse I borrowed of Captain Ferrers, we rode to Bigglesworth by the help of a couple of countrymen, that led us through the very long and dangerous waters, because of the ditches on each side, though it begun to be very dark, and there we had a good breast of mutton roasted for us, and supped, and to bed.

19 Annotations

First Reading

Todd Bernhardt  •  Link

"But having before got my Lord’s warrant for travelling to-day, there being a proclamation read yesterday against it at Huntingdon, at which I am very glad, I took leave"

Is there something about this Sunday in particular where dispensation was required to travel, or was travel prohibited on all Sundays?

dirk  •  Link

The Rev. Josselin's diary today...

"God good in many mercies, sad news of the Turks, spoils in Germany. gave thanks to god for gods mercy to Mr Richard Harlakenden the Justices brother. who lately came from Ireland, and, mounted on a young horse, he fell back upon and broke his bones in his chest. shoulder, neck. ribs, very much, and yet he walks about. I was struck by a cow on my face, and only a little hurt on the lip through mercy, this day divers of the ruder sort of people hearing, the statute of paying 1s. when absent from divine service is more than the fear of gods command."

jeannine  •  Link

“LEG OF MUTTON AFTER THE LEGAT’S WAY” by François de la Verme The French Cook 1653

‘After you have chosen it well, beat it well, take off the skin and flesh of the knuckle, whereof you shall cut off the end, lard it with mean lard, flower it, and pass it in the pan with lard or fresh seam. When you see it very brown, put it in the pot with one spoonful of broth well seasoned with Salt, Pepper, Clove, and a bundle of herbs; you may put in Capers, Mushrooms, Truffles, cover it with a lid closed up with flower, neither too soft, nor too hard, allayed in water, and seeth it on a few coles the space of three hours. When it is sodden uncover it; and garnish it with what you have to put it, as Kidneys, Bottoms of Artichokes, sweetbreads, and a short sauce, and about the dish lay Lemons, or Pomegranate, Barberries and grapes.”

And for the modernized version similar to what Sam would have enjoyed…. Serves 6

“1 oz / 25 g butter
1 small leg of lamb –approx 4 ½ lbs / 2kg
2 tablespoons flour seasoned with salt, pepper and ground cloves
A bundle of fresh herbs –bay, rosemary, parsley, etc.
8 oz / 225 g button mushrooms, cleaned and halved if they are large
1 tablespoon capers, drained and chopped
15 fl oz / 450 ml really well flavored stock or stock and red wine combined
1 oz / 25g butter
6 lambs kidneys, trimmed and halved
6 ozs / 150 g sweetbreads, blanched and sliced
6 artichoke hearts, sliced
3 ozs / 75g raspberries, loganberries or redcurrants (fresh/frozen)

Melt the butter till sizzling in a fireproof casserole. Toss the lamb in the seasoned flour and make sure it is well coated. Brown the lamb on all sides in the fat till the skin is well crisped. Tip in any flour that is over, stir well around and then add the herbs, mushrooms, capers and stock.
Cover the casserole, bring to the boil and then simmer gently for approximately one hour (15 mins to the pound of lamb). When the lamb is ready, heat the butter in a shallow pan and lightly fry the kidneys and sweetbreads till they are just cooked –the kidneys should still be pink inside. Keep them warm. In the remains of the butter fry the artichoke heart slices till they are warmed through then put them to keep warm with the kidneys.
Warm a serving dish. Carve the lamb and lay it out down the middle of the serving dish. Arrange the kidneys, sweetbreads and artichoke hearts around the edge of the dish. Spoon some of the sauce with some mushrooms over the lamb and put the rest in a warmed jug to be served separately. Decorate the lamb with the fruit and serve at once.”

From “Pepys At Table: Seventeenth century recipes for the modern cook”
By Christopher Driver and Michelle Berriedale-Johnson

TerryF  •  Link

A proclamation of 22 August for the observation of the Lord's Day, to be read once a month for six months - per L&M note. Surely this included Sabbath rest; hence Pepys's need for Lord Sandwich's written warrant for traveling today.

Louise H  •  Link

Why is it that Lord Sandwich has the authority to issue a warrant authorizing Sunday travel? I would think that such a warrant would be issued by a clergyman, not a local squire. Or is it that Sandwich is somehow the King's local representative? Any ideas?

(I post here very rarely but check this site daily. Thank you all, and Sam of course, for your lively and informative discussion!)

Michael Robinson  •  Link


Jeannie, thanks for the citation — have already ordered a copy through ABE (shamless plug time.) Have you tried many of the recipies — had the experience years ago of culinary professionals recreating a Leipsig "feast" for a Bach bash and it was near impossibe for modern constitutions to comfortably consume and digest same.

[Phil -- posted the above in error in the reference section, probably you should delete same]

alanB  •  Link

"And this wall Mr Pepys, do you not think that upon this mount, it looks very impressive?"

"Well, fine sir,.. p'raps a little too phallic m'lord?"

"Ah,..quite so. Good, good. I shall keep the stone mason working in my secret garden. I shall call it Chelsey."

Benvenuto  •  Link

Bigglesworth -> Biggleswade
I wonder how that shift happened: does anyone know about such things? Given there are plenty of places still called -worth not far away, I guess it can't be a dialect shift?

Bryan M  •  Link

Why is it that Lord Sandwich has the authority to issue a warrant authorizing Sunday travel?

Louise, Nix posted an extract from Blackstone's Commentaries [Manors were formerly called baronies,...] on the 16 September entry that describes some of the judicial functions of the lord of the manor. It goes some way to answering your question.

jeannine  •  Link

"Have you tried many of the recipies"
Michael-not yet, just cracked open the book, but it's full of recipes that Sam would have enjoyed. They look like they have been converted quite nicely to today's equivalents. I know we have some culinary experts who read the annotations and thought that some may enjoy a Sam-like mutton.
The book includes lots of background information on food, Sam and 17th century cooking.…

TerryF  •  Link

"Bigglesworth -> Biggleswade"

Actually, Benvenuto, vice-versa, and it was Pepys's innovation (perhaps he was stuck on the more common -worth). I put in the Background: "Biggleswade is a small market town on the River Ivel in Bedfordshire.[...]— the name Biggleswade is thought to be derived from Biceil, an Anglo-Saxon personal name and Waed, the Saxon word for ‘ford’."
"In 1132, Henry I granted the manor of Biggleswade to Bishop Alexander - Alexander the Magnificent - of Lincoln to help endow Lincoln Cathedral. The town was granted a charter to hold a market during the reign of King John (1196–1216) — a market is still held in the market place in the centre of the town every Saturday.
"The town is mentioned twice in the diaries of Samuel Pepys. On 22 July 1661, Pepys stopped off in Biggleswade (called ‘Bigglesworth’ by Pepys) to buy a pair of warm woollen stockings."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Hmmn...Bess and Sam on horseback, Bess hanging on, Sam nimbly dodging ye dark and dangerous waters... And on a day when travel be frowned upon.

"Tis not a time or day to be traveling about here." grim frown.

"Yes. But you see we do have a permit from my Lord of Sandwich and we must be on our..."

"Off with ye, then! But stay to the roads and beware the moors and ditches! God be wid ye, sir. Ma'am." the old countryman waves them off, pitchfork in hand.

"I think we should be leaving, Sam'l." Bess tugs.

"Ah, yeah...And good day to you, sir." Sam pulls the reins and heads off, Bess clinging tightly to him.

"Oh, ye can't let them go now." the old countryman's wife pleads at his side. "T'will be dark. It's murder!"

"Well, murder it is then!" he sulks. A younger man, their son beside them frowning at the mother.

A howl across the moors...

"There." the old woman rises. "Oh, ye must go after them!"

"I heard nothing." the old man shakes head.

"Nor I." the son.

"Sam'l? What was that?" Bess hisses as they ride on into the darkening moors. Sam having understandably lost his way a bit. Just a bit...Soon to find the road just over...

"What was...?"

Another, closer, louder howl...

The horse halts suddenly in fright...Rearing a bit. Sam calms him.

"Maybe we ought to head back. Get some directions?" Bess suggests.

In time immemorial fashion Sam eyes her.

Get directions?

"Directions? From those yokels, Bess? Please. Don't worry yourself, old one-eyed Cooper taught me to navigate by the stars." he looks skyward.

All clouds. Hmmn...

And there's a reason why one-eyed Cooper's not allowed near a sailing vessel's wheel, Bess thinks.

Fortunately rain begins, heavily. Furnishing Sam with a proper excuse for a retreat...Can't let poor Bess catch her death.

Another howl...Closer but...

"It's circling round us. Sam'l!"

"Methinks a back trace might get us to the road or some shelter..." he flickes the reins.

The horse nervously turns back...Head up, jerking round constantly...

Ooof...Down into a sinkhole...Both fall off...The horse, free of its burden, runs along at a gallop.

"Sam'l!!" A mud-drenched Bess rises up. But can't resist howling with glee at the far worse figure before her.

"Mrs. Pepys, really." stern frown.

"I doubt milord is going to come across us just this minute, Sam'l." she grins. "And he'd never recognize you if he..."

Loud snarling roar...

"My God, what is that, Sam'l?"

"Now, Bess. It's just some animal out in the rain, probably some hungry dog."

"You mean wolf. As in hungry people-eating, wolf."

"Some pathetic little creature, Bess. Now, darling. It's not as if the Hound of the Baskervilles is out there."

"Baskervilles?" Bess gasps.

"Oh, some silly legend my cousin Frank tole me about back in the fens. See, a long time ago..."

"But...Sam'l. The sign by the old countryman's hut read "d'Baskerville forest".


"Oh, that's just a coin..." Wild snarling cry, leaping shadow across the dark...


Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Concerning travel: Pepys may not meed Sandwich's warrant

L&M reference a footnote to 22 July 1660 and a matter in this post:

Paul Brewster on 22 Jul 2003

"It was the first time that ever I went by water on the Lord's day."
L&M note: “Because of his official position Pepys was not subject to the general rules against Sunday hire.”

Do L&M think the issue is the hire of a horse? Puzzling: the horse is on loan.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Sam may not need the pass because of his status, but then there is his wife and his father's boy travelling with him -- or don't they count as people? I wonder why he was so pleased the announcement was made against Sunday travel. Fewer traffic jams in the mud? The highwaymen will take the day off?

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"Sam may not need the pass because of his status, but then there is his wife and his father's boy travelling with him -- or don't they count as people?"

Pepys rents the transportation; they are along for the ride (as passengers).

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Thank you, Terry: I had not comprehended your previous post: It is the hire of transportation on Sundays, not the movement of people, that requires a permit. Since the horse is a loan, perhaps Ferrers or Sam wanted a CYA permit from Sandwich so they couldn't be accused of stealing the horse, or something. More study of England's "Blue Laws" at that time is called for.

(Blue laws in the United States vary by state. Blue laws are designed to enforce religious standards. Many states prohibit selling alcoholic beverages for on- and off-premises sales in one form or another on Sundays at some restricted time. Blue laws may also prohibit retail activity on days other than Sunday.)

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"It is the hire of transportation on Sundays, not the movement of people, that requires a permit."

I'm inferring this from what L&M say and Pepys's offering a ride to a couple who were not authorized to hire boat.

I bet the boatmen were not fans of regs that limited work.

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