Monday 18 January 1663/64

Up, being troubled to find my wife so ready to have me go out of doors. God forgive me for my jealousy! but I cannot forbear, though God knows I have no reason to do so, or to expect her being so true to me as I would have her. I abroad to White Hall, where the Court all in mourning for the Duchesse of Savoy. We did our business with the Duke, and so I to W. Howe at my Lord’s lodgings, not seeing my Lord, he being abroad, and there I advised with W. Howe about my having my Lord to dinner at my house, who likes it well, though it troubles me that I should come to need the advice of such a boy, but for the present it is necessary. Here I found Mr. Mallard, and had from him a common tune set by my desire to the Lyra Vyall, which goes most admirably. Thence home by coach to the ’Change, after having been at the Coffee-house, where I hear Turner is found guilty of felony and burglary; and strange stories of his confidence at the barr, but yet great indiscretion in his argueing. All desirous of his being hanged.

So home and found that Will had been with my wife. But, Lord! why should I think any evil of that; and yet I cannot forbear it. But upon enquiry, though I found no reason of doubtfulness, yet I could not bring my nature to any quiet or content in my wife all day and night, nor though I went with her to divert myself at my uncle Wight’s, and there we played at cards till 12 at night and went home in a great shower of rain, it having not rained a great while before. Here was one Mr. Benson, a Dutchman, played and supped with us, that pretends to sing well, and I expected great matters but found nothing to be pleased with at all. So home and to bed, yet troubled in my mind.

38 Annotations

First Reading

Sophie  •  Link

Up, being troubled to find my wife so ready to have me go out of doors. God forgive me for my jealousy!

Sam could probably do with a little self-reflection here. Perhaps look back over his diary entry of two days ago? Is it he who should be jealous?

Martin  •  Link

One Mr. Benson
Doesn't sound Dutch to me. Or like an Anglicization of a Dutch surname.

language hat  •  Link

Bensen is a perfectly good Dutch name; it's understandable that Pepys anglicizes the spelling.

Eric Walla  •  Link

Sophie, I think we have pretty well established that Sam's fits of jealousy follow fast on the heels of his amorous misadventures. This is just one more way in which the diary enlightens, not just about Sam but about the inner workings of us all.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"All desirous of his being hanged."

Exepting Polly Peachum Turner I'm sure...And perhaps a few other ladies.

"Well, Turner will swing, girls. There's no doubt." Sam happily dispenses the day's news to wife and domestic staff.

"No doubt, sir?" Jane asks, a stricken look.

"Is there no 'ope for 'im, Mr. Pepys?" Susan sighs sadly. Staring at something rather like a minature Sam notes in her hand.

"It can't be...No, no!" Bess, a frantic look. Calming a little at Sam's puzzled look.

He stares at all three...

Hmmn?...Ah well...Woman, thou art forever bathed in compassion.

"Sam'l I must visit...Ummn...My parents tomorrow." Bess notes hastily.

"I'd be glad to come into town with Mrs. Pepys, sir." Jane says. "I be needing a moment to go see my parents as well."

I'll slip out to see 'im tonight, Susan thinks. Say, Jane's parents ain't in town these two months, she said before.

"Well, I can take you but...Didn't your father go to fight the Turk in Austria? And your mother with him?" Sam looks at Bess.

"Didn't work out as yet..." Bess shakes head. "Just get me over by Whitehall and leave me with a little money."

Xjy  •  Link

Sam the worry-wart

... at his least appealing. The jealous puritanical bureaucrat and climber. Where's the mercurial seeker of novelty and delight, the compulsive lifter of lids?

Nate  •  Link

"Where's the mercurial seeker of novelty and delight, the compulsive lifter of lids?"

It's Monday!

Noel C. Bon Tempo  •  Link

Hogarth's view of the Bailey, could this be the source for Leo McKerns characterization of Rumpole?

martin  •  Link

Sorry LH, Bensen is not a Dutch name. I've done lots of Dutch genealogical research and checked my source there. I find only one 17th C Bensen in the Netherlands, who was born in Sweden and died in [what is now] Albany, NY. Most likely, it's Danish, and it's "Bentsen", a pretty common name there. English speakers frequently confuse "Dutch" with "Danish" to this day.

JonTom Kittredge  •  Link

"Sam could probably do with a little self-reflection here..."
Actually, what I find fascinating is that that's what seems to be going on here. I read, "I have no reason to do so, or to expect her being so true to me as I would have her," as, "I have no reason to expect her to be as true as I want her to be." I can only assume he feels he has no right to expect her to be true, because he hasn't been true to her. It's interesting to find a man conceding a reciprocal standard of fidelity between man in wife at that time in history.

language hat  •  Link

"Bensen is not a Dutch name"
OK, I'll take your word for it, since you've obviously studied the matter. I googled "bensen" with some Dutch words and first names and got enough hits to convince me it was.

JWB  •  Link

one Mr Benson

"Den Mimen flicht die Nachwelt keine Kränze"

JWB  •  Link

2nd, one Mr. Benson

Our singer may have been an English ex-pat, having fled to Holland for religious peace. I've a Quaker ancestor, who having been asked by Mass. authorities to find somewhere else to live, sidled-up to the Dutch in New Amsterdam for that reason. Foresight not own long suit.

Martin  •  Link

And one more Mr. Benson
We have met a Benson before, on June 2 1663, as the presumably pseudonymous author of a letter delivered to the home of Sir Thomas Tomkins. This is no doubt not the same gent.

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"one Mr Bensen .... a Dutchman who pretends to sing well"
Come to think of it, the Dutch have excelled in Painting but not at all in Music.

Bradford  •  Link

Don't tell Elly Ameling, Gré Brouwenstijn, Erna Spoorenberg, et al, and their admirers. It would break their hearts---and that's just the female singers.

A. De Araujo  •  Link

Elly Ameling yes, sorry! Gré who? Erna who?

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"Up, being troubled to find my wife so ready to have me go out of doors."

Intriguing...Of course Sam was probably a little paranoid from guilt and jealousy. God having worked in perfectly logical Pepysian fashion-Sam breaks marital vows with Mrs. Lane, God sends Pembleton to plague him.

Still, would be interesting to have seen just how quick Bess shooed him out this am.

Andrew Hamilton  •  Link

Dutch musicians

jan sweelink. Unico Willem van Wassenaer.

Michael Robinson  •  Link

More Dutch Musicians, etc.

What about Gustav Leonhardt; the renowned Holland-Utrecht Early Music Festival
and the Netherlands Bach Society; [shameless plug time] given the time of year why not hear/buy their recent(2003) recording of Bach's Christmas Oratorio?"

Bryan M  •  Link

Dutch musicians

Some of us have fond memories of Focus and Golden Earing...

Gay F. Gertz  •  Link

As a music lover and musician really enjoying all this info on the Dutch music scene.

A. De Araujo  •  Link

Mea culpa mea culpa mea maxima culpa

Wim van der Meij  •  Link

Thank you all for reminding us inhabitants of the Low Countries of the Dutch prowess in music. Especially these days Holland is said to be the best place for modern 'classical' music and a lot of foreign musicians (Arleen Auger a.o.) settle here.
A few more names: Jurriaan Andriessen, Bernhard Haitink.

Wim van der Meij  •  Link

And indeed, I do not know any Bensons here in Holland.

Pedro  •  Link

Views of Dutch Painting around Sam's time.

John Evelyn visited Holland in 1641 and found the Annual Fair at Rotterdam "so furnished with pictures" that he was amazed.

Peter Mundy had visited a year previously and remarked, "I think none other go beyond them, there having been in this country many excellent men in this faculty, some at present, as Rembrant etc. All in general striving to adorn their houses, especially the outer or street room with costly pieces; butchers and bakers, yea many times blacksmiths, cobblers etc., will have some pictures or other by their forge and in their stall. Such is the general notion, inclination and delight that these country natives have to their paintings."

Foreign visitors to the Seven Provinces seldom failed to remark on the Dutch love of pictures, and William Carr noted in 1688 that even the alms-houses were "richly adorned with them." Dutch painters were appreciated way beyond the bounds of the Republic and there was a thriving export trade in their works.

(Summary from The Dutch Seaborne Empire by C.R.Boxer)

Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa..."There is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents" (Luke 15:7,10,32).

Here is another! I also acknowledge that I could not think of any Dutch Composers, and have not heard of any of the names mentioned.

Ruben  •  Link

Pedro: Bernhard Haitink is a conductor well known. I had the pleasure to hear him in Amsterdam in 1960.
Later I found out he was living in London. I am sure you herd his interpretations, that were pervasive on the radio (including the BBC).
May I confess that all other names cited sound Dutch to me.

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"the Court all in mourning for the Duchesse of Savoy."

Christina of Bourbon, Dowager-Duchess of Savoy, second daughter of Henry IV of France [ i.e. sister of Henrietta Maria, widow of Charles I of England ] and aunt of Charles II of England, had died in December. The English court had gone into short mourning on 17 January. (Per L&M footnote)

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"If you feel a withdrawal syndrome tomorrow open today's Glorious Time and read about Papa Charles lust."

The link is now broken to Ruben's post, but I found a Guardian article of the same date about Sarah Poynting of Keele University announcing she had cracked two letters written in code that revealed a bawdy, lustful side of King Charles - proposing a "swiving" to a courtier's stepdaughter, Jane Whorwood, who was a spy and messenger for Charles I.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"I went with her to divert myself at my uncle Wight’s, and there we played at cards till 12 at night ..."

I wonder if Elizabeth found this "diverting"?

Louise Hudson  •  Link

There have been many Dutch classical composers, including a fair number of women. Here's a list.…

And several,20th Century composers

No link. Google search for dutch composers 20th century

Sasha Clarkson  •  Link

Re the discussions as to whether Mr Benson was Dutch or not, one should remember that the Netherlands was never linguistically uniform, being home to a fair number of languages/dialects, some more Scandinavian, others more German in character. This is/was further complicated by the maritime trade between the neighbouring states of this area.

One interesting group of dialects/lanuages is Frisian, very closely related to English.…

Third Reading

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