Saturday 20 February 1663/64

Up and to the office, where we sat all the morning, and at noon to the ’Change with Mr. Coventry and thence home to dinner, after dinner by a gaily down to Woolwich, where with Mr. Falconer, and then at the other yard doing some business to my content, and so walked to Greenwich, it being a very fine evening and brought right home with me by water, and so to my office, where late doing business, and then home to supper and to bed.

16 Annotations

First Reading

Lawrence  •  Link

"after dinner by gaily down to Woowich"
per L&M. "after dinner by Gally down to Woolwich"

jeannine  •  Link

"it being a very fine evening"

Sounds delightful, I'm jealous! Any idea what the temperature would be this time of year for Sam? I'd imagine it must be sort of mild otherwise a rowboat would be freezing.

cumsalisgrano  •  Link

"...after dinner by a gaily down to Woolwich..." a nice scan error or be it a serendipitous comment to pass the censor. "S. went gailey down to Woolwich playing his lute."
3 men in a ?

Michael Robinson  •  Link

(... to say nothing of Towser)

Mary  •  Link

February in London.

London temperatures at this time of year can vary between several degrees below zero and the 12-14C that we are experiencing this week. It all depends on which airstream prevails on any given day: broadly speaking, milder and wetter Atlantic (westerly) systems, colder Continental airflows (easterly) or bitter nor-easters that feel as if they have come direct from the North Pole.

Sjoerd  •  Link

I imagine the excursion to Woolwich was planned to make use of the tide running down and up the Thames.

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"down to Woolwich, where with Mr. Falconer, and then at the other yard"

Deptford. (L&M footnote)

Herbert  •  Link

I think I know what the the " ‘Change " was but what did Samuel do there, was he buying victuals & equipment or was just a place to be seen. I am sure this has been asked but I have missed the answer.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

A late reply to Herbert: I think Pepys goes to the 'Change every day if he can. It is a place he can hear the buzz ... this is a time virtually without newspapers, never mind email, FaceBook or Twitter. Sometimes he arranges to meet people there. Sometimes he bumps into acquaintances. A week ago he mentioned that he had never seen Coventry there ... now they have walked there from the office three timers together. And yes, there were lots of vendors to visit, pretty girls to see, goods to finger, ideas to ponder. As my boss said to me once, "Nothing happens if you never leave the office."

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"this is a time virtually without newspapers"

In 1664 there were Newsbooks and News-letters -- the precursors of newspapers -- circulated at the 'Change and nearby coffee-houses. The latest news of ships sailing and those entering English ports were posted at (put up on posts to be seen) on the 'Change. Pepys consultin a newsbook in 1662…

July 7 1665 he writes casually "I met this noon with Dr. Burnett, who told me, and I find in the newsbook this week that he posted upon the ‘Change,"…

It was not until early 1666 that the London Gazette was published…

Herbert, to see all the things Pepys could do at the 'Change, this link will help…

Sasha Clarkson  •  Link

News of ships' arrival and departure was one of the more important topics of the gossip in the 'Change. The foreunner of the newspaper 'Lloyd's List', would make its first appearance around 1690, published by the eponymous owner of the famous coffee house nearby. Eventually, until 2013 when it moved to digital format, it became a daily publication available throughout the UK. Amongst other news it recorded the arrival and departure of ships in British ports.

In my own home town of Middlesbrough Lloyd's List was prominently displayed by newsagents in the port area, and in some of the poorer areas of the town. As grubby-minded schoolchildren we believed that it was popular with "ladies of negotiable affection" who were interested in ships' arrivals for business purposes.…'s_List

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

Re jeannine’s now 10-yr-old enquiry about the weather:

‘Met Office Regional forecast for London: Wet and very windy tomorrow.

This Evening and Tonight: Continuing cloudy with outbreaks of rain or drizzle spreading across all parts. Generally mild with strong gusty southwest winds developing, and occasional gales along the south coast. Min T 7 °C.

Thursday: Cloudy and mild with occasionally heavy rain during morning, then turning colder and brighter later with a few showers. Strong winds with gales for a time, possibly severe. Max T 11 °C.

Outlook for Friday to Sunday: Friday: Cold, sunny intervals and isolated showers. Saturday: Less cold with strong winds but largely dry until later. Sunday: Rain clearing though further showers are likely, breezy but mild = 12C.

Updated at: 1409 on Wed 22 Feb 2017’
Monday was a fine warm day . .

NB: Our Hero was using the Old Style Calendar, 10 days behind our New Style, so his February 20 1664 (a leap year) = March 1 New Style, a big difference at this time of the year, so the odds of a fine day are much higher - but not this year:

‘UK Outlook for 27 Feb to 8 Mar 2017: A fairly unsettled picture is likely at first, as further weather systems affect the UK from the Atlantic. Showery spells could affect many areas . . Milder, cloudier weather is likely to be more prevalent further south and east at first, but all areas are likely to turn colder by the mid-week with an increasing risk of overnight frost. The changeable Atlantic influence is likely to remain in place as we go into March, with cloudy spells accompanied by rain and strong winds at times . . There is a smaller likelihood of more settled conditions with overnight fog and frost by early March.’…

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

Likely that the main object of going to 'Change was to have private conversation with Coventry about the business of the day. And to get some exercise and fresh air before dinner, of course.

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