Wednesday 4 November 1663

Up and to my office, shewing myself to Sir W. Batten, and Sir J. Minnes, and no great matter made of my periwigg, as I was afeard there would be. Among other things there came to me Shales of Portsmouth, by my order, and I began to discourse with him about the arrears of stores belonging to the Victualling Office there, and by his discourse I am in some hopes that if I can get a grant from the King of such a part of all I discover I may chance to find a way to get something by the by, which do greatly please me the very thoughts of. Home to dinner, and very pleasant with my wife, who is this day also herself making of marmalett of quince, which she now do very well herself. I left her at it and by coach I to the New Exchange and several places to buy and bring home things, among others a case I bought of the trunk maker’s for my periwigg, and so home and to my office late, and among other things wrote a letter to Will’s uncle to hasten his removal from me, and so home to supper and to bed. This morning Captain Cocke did give me a good account of the Guinny trade. The Queene is in a great way to recovery. This noon came John Angier to me in a pickle, I was sad to see him, desiring my good word for him to go a trooper to Tangier, but I did schoole him and sent him away with good advice, but no present encouragement. Presently after I had a letter from his poor father at Cambridge, who is broke, it seems, and desires me to get him a protection, or a place of employment; but, poor man, I doubt I can helpe him, but will endeavour it.

43 Annotations

First Reading

Terry F  •  Link

I, too, would be self-conscious about my periwigg!

Terry F  •  Link

The Guinea trade

"The British transatlantic slave trade, which flourished from the mid-seventeenth century until the early nineteenth century, was a major conduit for the enforced migration of Africans to the Americas. Between 1660 and 1807 over three million Africans were dispatched to the Americas in British vessels."…

Recall Pedro's annotation on Barbados as a source of sugar.…

So began the trade that would enable quince marmalade on Seething Lane and rum in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.…

Darryl Remnant  •  Link

Hey TerryF,

What is quince marmalade on Seething Lane?



JWB  •  Link

"...arrears...Victualling Office..."

" His new arrangement for the victualling of Tangier, he tells us with honest complacency, will save the king a thousand and gain Pepys three hundred pounds a year, - a statement which exactly fixes the degree of the age's enlightenment. " Robert Louis Stevenson:
Samuel Pepys, (written 1886)

language hat  •  Link

"What is quince marmalade on Seething Lane?"
Did you read today's entry?

Pedro  •  Link

The Guinea trade

I think that it is worth mentioning that it is highly unlikely that Cocke and Sam discuss the Slave Trade. There had been English merchants in West Africa for some 100 years prior to Sam's time, and the Guinea Trade was loosely used to mean trade from most of the West African Coast, including sugar, ivory and gold. Although many countries had been involved in slave trade for many years the English had not yet got involved, besides buying slaves from other countries for the labour on the expanding plantations.

Around 1662 Charles had formed the Company of Royal Adventurers Trading in Africa (also known as the Guinea Company), and that became The Royal Africa Company in 1672. The adventure that Holmes had recently returned from, and the one he will shortly embark on to the West Africa, is mainly in search of gold and makes no mention of slaves.

language hat  •  Link

Thanks, Pedro.
That's an excellent point, and one that needed to be made. We focus so heavily these days (for good and sufficient reasons) on the slave trade that it blinds us to things that were more prominent at the time.

Ruben  •  Link

you can see that the word "Marmalade" is an hyperlink. Click your mouse over it and read the information.
If you are interested in more info, look at the background info (food).

In my modest opinion in Pepys days sugar (and honey) were very expensive. Especially sugar was imported from over the sea. For this reason they probably used the minimal quantity of sweetener possible (good for them...)

In those days they used a lot of spices to enhace food and drinks. It is probable that some cinnamon, newly monopolized by Amsterdam (before that by Portugal), saffron or other spices made it to the boiling pot giving a taste we are not used today.

jeannine  •  Link

"In those days they used a lot of spices to enhance food and drinks."
Ruben, you are correct to believe that spices were used heavily, when available in Pepys time. In "Pepys At Table" Driver and Berrierdale-Johnson, explain, that was true, especially in the preparation of meat:

"Since there was not enough fodder to heel them alive, the majority of animals were killed during the period from September to Christmas and pickled, soused, smoked or dried to preserve their flesh as long as possible. These methods of preservation were effective but left a strong flavour of their own which in turn needed to be counteracted by heavy spicing and flavouring. Now that freezers do our preserving for us without imparting taste we do not need such heavy disguise for our meat.

But whether the meat was spiced or newly killed there were no refrigerators to prolong its freshness. In this respect the Pepys were lucky -they lived in London which was well supplied with fresh and reasonably good quality meats, but even they had to take care. One more than one occasion Pepys complained about bad venison in a pasty. As a safeguard, meats were very thoroughly cooked or served, as they had been in the middle ages, with a sweet, spicy or fruit sauce. The natural antiseptic in the spices and acid fruits helped to counteract any 'poisins' in the meat. Since we seldom need to worry about freshness in our meat we can reduce the length of cooking and the strength of the sweet or spicy sauces" (p. 23).

jeannine  •  Link

"We focus so heavily these days (for good and sufficient reasons) on the slave trade that it blinds us to things that were more prominent at the time."
First, thanks to Pedro for the great summary and to LH for making this point, but in spite of putting things into perspective as to where they were over 300 years ago, there is a "damsel in distress", who has once again taken the hit to be the center of undeserved and false slave-trade accusations and controversy...……

Australian Susan  •  Link

Preserving food

As Jeannine points out, with refridgeration, we no longer need to use the older methods of perservation listed in the quotation she used. However, some of these methods are still employed because people like the result; two examples: kippers and corned silverside, which is still a supermarket meat counter staple over here. Necessity is the mother of invention and some of the inventions please the palate!
Sam is importuned by even the most tenuous of relative connections (Angiers) isn't he? Although he doesn't comment, he must get a sense of his perceived importance and influence within the wider family.

Australian Susan  •  Link

The Perriwigg

I have been wondering if these were held in place in any way? I keep getting this image of one of the Sir Williams calling out to Sam suddenly from behind him, Sam turning swiftly and turning his head within the wig to render it back to front on his head - much sniggering from the clerks!

Xjy  •  Link

Africans and slaves
No mention of Mingo for ages.
Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong, regardless of whether it's the done thing or not. (Go Spartacus!) All these trades tend to be hushed up while they're flourishing - like the white slave trade in Europe today (trafficking in women and children for sexual exploitation). Mrs Warren's Profession was a bit of a shocker when Shaw wrote it - I wonder how many of today's hard-nosed homines economici would even notice there was a problem being posed in it.

Terry F  •  Link

"undeserved and false slave-trade accusations"

Jeannine refers to the claim that
"Catherine and her husband, King Charles II, supported the enslavement of African people. Even if the two did not own slaves, the critics contend, they supported the system that allowed slavery to flourish in the colonies." Contested by another source.…

Did they or did they not? Jeannine, say more.

Terry F  •  Link

Seasonal slaughtering persisted into the 20c

In the early 20c in rural midwestern US most animals were slaughtered after the rivers froze over. The ready supply of ice (covered with sawdust) was used to preserve meat to be eaten during the winter; other meat was most ordinarily salt-cured or smoked. So it was when my father (born in 1914) was growing up on a farm outside Hannibal, MO.

jeannine  •  Link

"Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong, regardless of whether it's the done thing or not."
Absolutely it's 10000000% wrong, but the issue at hand is that Catherine was blamed for it, even though she had no part in it.
When I was starting to research Catherine I came upon these articles. A little later on, I happened to be corresponding with a professor in Stuart History who had researched these claims against her and he stated flat out that the claims against her were totally false. Although slavery is totally detestable, being accused of supporting it and profiting from it, when you have not, is also wrong and that is what these articles address.
You couldn't pick 2 people who had more separate lives than Charles and Catherine. She absolutely had no say in his activity and never meddled with his political, financial (or even personal) life. For about 10 years she didn't even live with him. There articles address the disgust at the move for "political correctness" and how our current society has misrepresented her role in history.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

The perriwig.

Susan, it's even more fun when the thing goes flying with a vigorous head shake.

"Pon, my soul." Minnes looks at the grayish flying thing headed his way. "We've bats in the offices, gentlemen!"

A vigorous beating with a broom at hand seems to have killed the thing.

"Sir John?!" Sam races up.

"No problem, Pepys my boy." Minnes holding up battered wig on end of broomstick. "I've killed the damned thing. Reminds me of the large grey creatures we used to encounter off the Cape Verde Islands. Beastly things."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

New wig...
New gown...
As for the shoes they are the best in town...(shot to Bess frowning as she adds bills, the "hers" pile notably smaller than the "his".)

Velvet hat...(Tom gives proud thumb's up)
Gold trim...
Straighten that wig it looks a little grim...

The Duke's House will empty as our Sam goes by...

Cause every seventeenth century lady's crazy for a well-decked guy...


"The wig is first-rate, sir."

"Yes...But who the devil are those three men with the long beards wagging fingers at me?)

language hat  •  Link

"Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong"
Gosh, I never thought of it that way! Thanks for enlightening me!

You know, now that we all agree slavery is wrong, maybe we can afford to take a few minutes out to try to understand the 17th century on its own terms? Just so we can see its people as something other than caricatures viewed through the wrong end of the telescope? No? OK, carry on with your righteous rhetoric, then.

JonTom Kittredge  •  Link

"Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong"
Your point about not imposing our moral viewpoint on the past is certainly very important, Mr Hat, but I found your first comment more persuasive. The discussion on this issue seemed to me to be reasoned on both sides. With all respect, I found the sarcasm in your last so heavy-handed that it risks coming off self-righteous itself.

Ruben  •  Link

"Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong"
The life of Bartolome de Las Casas went from his indiference to the suffering of the Indians, to his understanding of this injustice and his looking for a solution in Africa's natives slavery. Later he understood that this was translating a wrong from one people to another. He wrote a lot about it but nothing changed, because of economical interests.
His books where translated but I do not think Pepys red Las Casas. So here we are with a man with very strong moral and religious principles in front of a situation he did not perceived as wrong doing. The European society were he lived was looking for the gold coins. And Samuel Pepys was the archetypical Londoner of his day.

Pedro  •  Link

Catherine and the Slave Trade.

One of the selling points that the Portuguese Ambassador gave to Charles , in the marriage proposal, was that Catherine would not meddle in affairs of State. It is interesting that she is blamed by assosiation with her husband, and not by her association to Portugal. The Portugusese were way ahead of Britain in the Slave Trade.

As a pious Catholic in 1663, in those times of the Inquisition, it is hard to see how she could speak out against slavery.

Terry F  •  Link

Guinea trade, Catherine, and African slaves

I both introduced the matter and obfuscated it by quoting an imputation to Catherine of a motive there is no evidence she had. Pepys's mention of Holmes's report on the Guinea trade brought to mind notice of what was evidently already long underway by other agents in the background, by English more recently - linking that to the African slave labor force in Jamaica, first brought there by the Spanish in 1517.…

Thanks to Pedro et al. for a lively and clarifying discussion of these several issues.

language hat  •  Link

"Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong"

JonTom: My comment did not arise in a vacuum. Xjy's main contribution around here is reminding us of the iniquities of racism, capitalism, and other favorite sins of the modern world. Not only do I get quite enough of that in the political discussions I come to Pepys to get away from, and not only do we all know it already, but he makes it harder than it is anyway for us to get into a useful frame of mind for understanding Sam and his world. Hence my heavy-handedness.

Michael Robinson  •  Link

Guinea, slaves and earlier English Royalty.

"Between 1562 and 1568 he [Sir John Hawkins] made four voyages, three of which he led himself, which opened a lucrative trade selling to the Spaniards in the West Indes slaves whom he had prieviously acquired from the Portuguese by piracy on the cost of West Africa. This of course broke the Spanish monopoly, but English traders were not always unwelcome to Spanish settlements away from the major ports, which were poorly served by official shipping. On Hawkins' fourth voyage, his backers included the Queen [Elizabeth] herself, whose investment consisted of the large ship 'Jesus of Lubeck.' Unfortunately for Hawkins, the Jesus was old and in poor condition. ..."

"Henry VIII also built one true galley in the Mediterranean style, The 'Galley Subtle' of 1543, and his ministers embraced with enthusiasn the new fashion for galley slaves. A proclamation of 1554 (the same year that convicts were first ordered to the galleys in France) ordered that 'ruffians, vagabonds, masterless men, common players and evil disposed persons,' to be found 'at the Bank and suchlike naughty places where they haunt and in manner lie nightly,' were to be sent to the galleys. Acts of 1548 and 1593 provided for criminals to be sentanced to the galleys, and the idea of using Scots prisoners of war was also canvassed. But in practice all these hopeful projects foundered, and English galleys seem usually to have been manned by free men. Queen Elizabeth later owned a galley named the 'Bonavoglia,' the Italian word for a volunteer oarsman; no sense of irony obstructed Sir John Hawkins's 1589 proposal to man her with slaves, but it proved impossible in practice."

N. A. M. Rodger, The Safeguard of the Sea: A Naval History of Britain, Volume One, 660 - 1649. London: Harper Collins, 1997 [NY: Norton, 1998] pp. 201, 211

Xjy  •  Link

"Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong"

"JonTom: My comment did not arise in a vacuum." [...writes LH...] "Xjy's main contribution around here is reminding us of the iniquities of racism, capitalism, and other favorite sins of the modern world."

(Bit ad hominem, so here's a brief rejoinder.) "Favourite sins" is a give-away remark when used of things like racism and capitalism. So is "modern world". Both these things were well under way, and well-criticized (especially the capitalism) in Pepys's time. Plenty of evidence for this in the writings of Quakers, Levellers, Diggers etc. Slavery had already been scourged by the early Christians. So the irony falls flat if it's meant to imply that "we moderns" have only taken up complaining about racist discrimination and capitalist exploitation cos we can't find anything else to bitch about. And of course the implication that all of us in the "modern world" spend all our times pooh-poohing the un-PC is nonsense.

"Not only do I get quite enough of that in the political discussions I come to Pepys to get away from," -- Pepys isn't a good place to get away from politically contentious material.

... "and not only do we all know it already," -- I beg to differ. Perhaps most people would shy away from openly expressing racist views, but the history of British public opinion since WW2 in relation to both the Empire, the Colonies and Home, makes me doubt it. As for the evils of capitalism "we all know it already" is not just specious but totally untrue.

... "but he makes it harder than it is anyway for us to get into a useful frame of mind for understanding Sam and his world." -- Sounds like cultural-historical relativism to me. Which is why I brought up the much earlier case of Spartacus.

And which is why I think my contribution here (I don't put my oar in enough to warrant a "main") is to try to link incidents and developments and tendencies in Pepys with analogues ancient and modern in an overall perspective of the social-economic historical development of large-scale society (eg nations, world market). Plus the occasional language note and reminders of the Baltic connection.

The English Revolution of 1640-60 was perhaps the single most radical political explosion of the politically explosive 17th century. Sam's position as a (petty-)bourgeois upstart riding on the crest of the revolutionary breaker as the Restorationist undertow tries to suck it all back into the deep again allows an immensely rich tapestry of the day to weave itself for us in his personal, professional and social observations. And the perspectives out into the reality of the day, and the past that led to it, and the future that emerged from it, are sketched in here with great skill and knowledge by LH and the rest of us, each in our own favourite field(s) of course, but also interacting in the most fashionably PC cross-disciplinary spirit.

Let a hundred flowers bloom! Let a hundred schools of thought contend!

Ruben  •  Link

Cultivo una rosa blanca
en julio como en enero
para el amigo sincero
que me da su mano franca.
Jose Marti
I grow a white rose
in summer and in winter
for the true friend
that extends is open hand.

language hat  •  Link

Fair enough, and I'm certainly not saying we should ignore such issues; they frequently occur to me as well when I read the Diary. I guess what I object to in your comments is the superior tone: "I'm now going to enlighten you sheep about the moral issues you ignore in your bourgeois complacency." If you treated us as equals who realize the importance of these issues rather than as nasty rabbits who "shy away from openly expressing racist views," your input -- whose actual content is often welcome -- might be better received. (That's one reason I started avoiding People of the Left, with whose views I was often in sympathy: they tend to take far too much pleasure in striking a tone of moral superiority, and show far too little interest in communication.)

language hat  •  Link

Like for example:
If this thread had featured a lot of discussion of other aspects of the Guinea trade, carefully tiptoeing around the slave issue, it would have been perfectly in order to remind everyone forcefully of it. But the very first comment focused on the slave trade, which is surely what is uppermost in most of our minds when we think of the Guinea trade today (and by "our" I refer to those of us who frequent this site, not the hypothetical ignorant masses); when Pedro brought up the other aspects, it was a useful reminder that they existed and were probably foremost in Sam's mind. Then you come along with "Capturing people and treating them like cattle is wrong..." as if that had never occurred to us. Do you see how that might be irritating?

I hope you don't take away the impression that I'm dismissive of you and your contributions; you're obviously a learned fellow with a fine writing style when you choose to display it. The paragraph starting "The English Revolution of 1640-60" is a real gem. I just get tired of the lectures. (And yes, before you point it out, I'm aware that I have a weakness for lecturing myself...)

Pedro  •  Link

The Guinea Trade.

The site that Terry referred to at the start of the annotations says...

Between 1660 and 1807 over three million Africans were dispatched to the Americas in British vessels.

This seems typical of many articles that, although the figure for Africans may well be right, they extend the interest in the Slave Trade back to the start of the Restoration and therefore to this period of the Diary.

Before the present time in the Diary, Ollard in his book Man of War says...

"It is almost as difficult to overstate the expectation of easy wealth with which a 17C European approached the west coast of Africa as it is to find a rational basis for it. The Portuguese, the Dutch, the English, the Swedes, the Danes and other less considerable maritime nations competed keenly for the prizes it was thought to offer. The student of the balance sheets, in England at any rate, might feel less sanguine. The first company that had traded along the coast, the charmingly named Gynney and Bynney Company, had made spectacular losses. Over £7,000 pound had been invested in the first three voyages of the years 1618, 1619 and 1620 on which the return was of £5,600. The second company that received a charter in 1631 (Prince Rupert was appointed Governor) granting it monopoly of trade between Cape Blanco and the Cape of Good Hope showed no prophet until 1636 when its first successful voyage brought home £30,000 of gold. This was one of the few winning tickets in a large lottery of blanks."

Prince Rupert had fled with the Royalist fleet, along with Holmes, to the West Indies and back. On this long voyage they had called to coast of Africa and sailed up the Gambia River to Elephant Island. From there Rupert gained intelligence of mountains of gold. From this one could assume that Rupert, James and Charles were keen to follow this up after the Restoration, and hence the first voyage by Holmes to the Coast to check it out, and the formation of the Company of Royal Adventures. And now at this present time in the Diary we see the preparations for the second voyage that Holmes will make.

(Disclaimer: The above does not in any way condone Slavery and is for information only.)

Pedro  •  Link

"and makes no mention of slaves."

Not so Pedro, this will teach you to read the small print! Ollard goes on to tell of the instructions to the Factors before Holmes' first expedition...

"Markets, prices, echange rates, barter rates, political affiliations, all are to be recorded. The unfamiliarity of the trade is evident from the discretion left to the men on the spot: "You are to provide such negroes, Hydes, and other goods that you can freight the Sophia and the Griffin and, if you find any of the goods of that country profitable, to ballast them therewith, and if to your judgement they should not seem profitable to ballast them therewith, yet send some for trial..." The negroes that are mentioned in such a matter-of-fact a tone were to be sold in the Canaries on the way home: if there were no market for them they could always be sold at Cadiz or Lisbon. The vast profits of the Slave Trade were as yet but dimly discerned."

(I will try to post a summary of the first expedition of Holmes in the background as it is helpful to understand not only the African question, but also the coming Dutch War.)

Second Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

After this exchange it almost sees too trivial to get back to our usual level of enquiry ... but does anyone know how they anchored their periwigs to their heads?

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"... I am in some hopes that if I can get a grant from the King of such a part of all I discover I may chance to find a way to get something by the by, which do greatly please me the very thoughts of. "

A grant these days means you get a gift of up-front money to fund a project. Here I understand Pepys to want an exclusive agreement with Charles II to save the Navy some money by implementing a system, with his reward to be a percentage of any savings realized.

Don't some companies and the IRS do that today, incentivizing employees to speak up about bad systems, theft, incompetence, whistle-blowing, etc.? The RLS quote seems to be about another situation, or he has information to which we are not yet privy, or his idea of ethics is not the same as ours today.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

My two cents on the 17th century slave trade:

Being homeless today is the equivalent of being poor then; Approx.1/3 of the population of England slept in the open at this time. Then as now, jail was a form of welfare. You only went to prison before trial; afterwards it was off to the stocks, be branded or mutilated, deported, hung, or hung-drawn-and-quartered/beheaded. Unless you were a debtor, in which case you remained locked up until your family coughed up the money (same today if you can't afford bail) or indentured servitude for X-number of years.

There was in France the galleys. "... at Marseilles ... watching Louis XIV's galleys put to sea with about 2,000 slaves tugging at the oars ..." Robert Boyle, a Biography by Flora Masson… page 106
These slaves were Frenchmen, not Africans.

St. Vincent de Paul was a slave in North Africa, returned after a few years, and "In 1619 ... Louis XIII appointed Vincent chaplain general of the galleys with responsibility for the spiritual well-being of all the galley convicts of France."…

Charles II attempted to release/ransom slaves from the Barbary Pirates, with mixed results. For centuries they raided Britain's coastal villages, wiping out whole communities. Queen Henrietta Maria's dwarf, Sir Jeffrey Hudson, was caught, enslaved, and returned to England some years later, inexplicably taller. There were about one million European slaves in North Africa at this time.


San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Orphans: Rich ones were "sold" by the monarch to nobles who would then marry them to their children, so taking over their inheritances. Wards of the parish like Pepys' Susan, Jinny and Wayneman got board, lodging and a place to sleep by the kitchen fire. They were the lucky ones.

Miners: No one volunteered to be a tin or coal miner: You were born into a family that did that, and you had no option but to head down the mine as well. It was a designation, like being an "untouchable" in India.

War: Your landlord promised the King he could muster 500 men, and suddenly you found yourself being marched off to Worcester and expected to kill your cousin who had a different landlord. If you survived on the side that lost, you could be deported to a sugar plantation for life.

Or you went to the pub for a drink with your mates, and the Press Gang got you. You would disappear, possibly for years, or killed in battle.

They treated Africans sold by their own people with as little regard as they treated British unfortunates. Lousy. There was no mercy. But there were too many mouths to feed, millions of refugees fleeing plagues, religious persecution, war, and famine caused by floods and crop failures, so on some level perhaps they rationalized exporting people to "empty" lands of plenty and providing them with work was the right thing to do? So long as the slave isn't an Israelite, the Bible repeatedly says you can do it.

Today there are more enslaved people than there were in the 18th century. The "too many people and refugees" excuse is almost the same, but there are no more "empty" lands, so we can only plead GREED to provide the individual solutions. Perhaps we should clean house rather than throw stones?

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

I had never heard of Bartolomé de Las Casas before. I find he published a book, going Caribbean island by island, river and community, detailing problems.

To give you a flavor, here is the opening paragraph of the conclusion:

"I, Bartolomé de Las Casas, or Casaus, a brother in the Dominican Order, was, by the grace of God, persuaded by a number of people here at the Spanish court, out of their concern for the Christian faith and their compassion towards the afflictions and calamities that befall their fellow-men, to write the work you have before you in order to help ensure that the teeming millions in the New World, for whose sins Christ gave His life, do not continue to die in ignorance, but rather are brought to knowledge of God and thereby saved. My deep love of Castile has also been a spur, for I do not wish to see my country destroyed as a divine punishment for sins against the honour of God and the True Faith. It had always been my intention to pen this account, although it has been long delayed by my being taken up with so many other tasks. I completed it in Valencia on the eighth day of December 1542, at a time when the violence, the oppression, the despotism, the killing, the plunder, the depopulation, the outrages, the agonies and the calamities we have described were at their height throughout the New World wherever Christians have set foot. It may be that some areas are worse than others: Mexico City and the surrounding territories are a little better than most, for there, at least, outrages cannot be committed so publicly, as there is justice of a sort, despite the crippling taxation unjustly imposed on the people. Yet I do see hope for the future, for, as the Emperor and King of Spain, Charles V (whose person and whose Empire may God preserve), learns of the crimes committed against his will and against that of God by his servants in the New World and of their treachery towards the people of the continent (for, until now, there has been an effective conspiracy of silence about what has really been happening), he will, as one wedded to the concept of justice and avid to see it prevail, put a stop to the wickedness and undertake a total reform of the administration of this New World that God has bestowed upon him and will do so for the greater glory of the Holy Catholic Church and for the salvation of his own royal soul. Amen."

So the Spanish were made aware of the wickedness they had undertaken 130 years before Pepys' Diary. Maybe it wasn't translated into English, but plenty of people spoke Spanish.

Difficult to imagine discounting something as clear as this ... until you remember how dead-set we seem to be to change the climate right now. Discounting news you don't like is also part of the human condition.

Taken from:…

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Blaming Catherine of Braganza for not speaking out against the Portugal slave trade is insane. She was born in November, 1638 and educated in a convent to be traded as a political pawn by her family as an obedient Catholic Queen to a foreign land for breeding and treaty purposes. She is now 25, living in the cold land of the Protestant damned, with a husband who doesn't love her, and enjoys teaching her the wrong words in English so people laugh at her. Queen Henrietta Maria, who should be her ally, is busy conspiring to replace her. It could be years before she has the courage to voice an original thought.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

I've spent the evening reading more about Bartolomé de Las Casas and find that, in my enthusiasm to find evidence that Charles II et al were scurvy knaves, I had made assumptions about Fr. Las Casas.

In the Forward the authors state he would never have accepted any kind of revolt against the power of either the Roman Catholic Church or Spain. His criticism of the conquistadors' behavior, the agents of the Crown, and members of the clergy were relentless and uncompromised. Since he was never formally accused of heterodoxy or suspected of treason, he argued successfully that all rebels were disrupters of ‘the common reason of man’. Like many radicals, Las Casas was, in all respects but one, a staunch conservative.

Fr. Bartolomé de Las Casas' believed the Crown had seriously mismanaged its colonies, and the behavior of the colonists had ‘given reason for the name of Christ to be loathed and abominated by countless people’. But Las Casas never disputed that the Spanish were the legitimate rulers of the Americas. Until he died, he believed the indigenous peoples had, in ignorance but in good faith, voluntarily surrendered their natural sovereignty to the King of Spain.

His book, the Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies, was written in 1542 and dedicated to Philip II. It was intended to inform the King of what was happening in the Americas in his name, as a warning that if the atrocities continued God would destroy Spain as a punishment.

His "atmospheric anatomy of genocide" was translated into every major European language and published at that time, and widely read for the next 300 years.

So Pepys et al could have read this 100-yer-old incitement in English, if they could find it.

Lex Lector  •  Link

After some time away, charmed: to return to the Diary and discover that Mrs. P. and I have both made Quince "Marmalett" on the same day ( a mere 353 years apart). Terrific on sourdough toast...
Quinces are beautiful. Are they the original "Golden Apples" - of the Sun, or the Hesperides?

Robert Harneis  •  Link

Quince jelly is better but more trouble to make.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"Miners: No one volunteered to be a tin or coal miner: You were born into a family that did that, and you had no option but to head down the mine as well. It was a designation, like being an "untouchable" in India."

For four years I've been keeping an eye open for my citation on this information. Today I found a Wikipedia quote ... I rarely quote Wikipedia, but they have citations, so here we go:

"For nearly 200 years in the history of coal mining in Scotland, miners were bonded to their "maisters" by a 1606 Act "Anent Coalyers and Salters". The Colliers and Salters (Scotland) Act 1775 stated that "many colliers and salters are in a state of slavery and bondage" and announced emancipation; those starting work after 1 July 1775 would not become slaves, while those already in a state of slavery could, after 7 or 10 years depending on their age, apply for a decree of the Sheriff's Court granting their freedom. Few could afford this, until a further law in 1799 established their freedom and made this slavery and bondage illegal."[25][26]

[25] "Erskine May on Slavery in Britain (Vol. III, Chapter XI)". Retrieved 2 November 2017.
[26] James Barrowman, Mining Engineer (14 September 1897). "Slavery In The Coal-Mines Of Scotland". Scottish Mining Website. Retrieved 2 November 2017.

More on slavery in England at…

Third Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

More on miners:

Queen Elizabeth freed the last English serfs in 1574. But serfdom remained in Scotland until the Colliers and Salters (Scotland) Act 1775 prevented the creation of the status, and 1799, when coal miners who had been kept in serfdom prior to the 1775 Act gained emancipation. However, most Scottish serfs had been freed by then.……

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