Wednesday 29 June 1664

Up, and Mr. Shepley came to me, who is lately come to town; among other things I hear by him how the children are sent for away from my father’s, but he says without any great discontent. I am troubled there should be this occasion of difference, and yet I am glad they are gone, lest it should have come to worse.

He tells me how my brave dogg I did give him, going out betimes one morning to Huntington, was set upon by five other doggs, and worried to pieces, of which I am a little, and he the most sorry I ever saw man for such a thing.

Forth with him and walked a good way talking, then parted and I to the Temple, and to my cozen Roger Pepys, and thence by water to Westminster to see Dean Honiwood, whom I had not visited a great while. He is a good-natured, but a very weak man, yet a Dean, and a man in great esteem. Thence walked to my Lord Sandwich’s, and there dined, my Lord there. He was pleasant enough at table with me, but yet without any discourse of business, or any regard to me when dinner was over, but fell to cards, and my Lady and I sat two hours alone, talking of the condition of her family’s being greatly in debt, and many children now coming up to provide for. I did give her my sense very plain of it, which she took well and carried further than myself, to the bemoaning their condition, and remembering how finely things were ordered about six years ago, when I lived there and my Lord at sea every year.

Thence home, doing several errands by the way. So to my office, and there till late at night, Mr. Comander coming to me for me to sign and seal the new draft of my will, which I did do, I having altered something upon the death of my brother Tom. So home to supper and to bed.

13 Annotations

First Reading

Terry F  •  Link

"the children" -- Sandwich's daughters (L&M)

"my brave dogg I did give him" -- i.e., did give his father (L&M)

Robert Gertz  •  Link

One could see where Sandwich might be a tad miffed at forever finding my Lady turning to Sam to discuss the poor state of affairs his high-flying lifestyle has left the family in. Add to that Sam's letter regarding his conduct with Chelsea Betty and a certain coolness might be understandable.


The war doesn't seem to be exactly stirring men's souls to action just now...

JWB  •  Link

"...worried to pieces..."

Recall Sam's attack:
Monday 11 May 1663
"..., and thence on foot to Greenwich, where going I was set upon by a great dogg, ..."

Patricia  •  Link

JWB: I had forgotten that shocking incident, when Sam failed to draw his sword to defend himself.
Some things never change; though the police officer in our village did draw weapon on the great dogg that set upon her this past Spring. But of course, she'd had training and Sam had not.

Michael Robinson  •  Link

or any regard to me when dinner was over

To add to Robert Gertz; Sandwich knows Thomas Pepys has been re-negotiating the security for his loan -- to get SP off the hook for the guarantee -- so it must be clear that SP has been gossiping about Sandwich's finances and might be spreading word further that could affect his apparently precarious credit. Clearly Howe has been asked to dissemble.

Following the Betty letter Sandwich knows also that assurances of complete confidentiality from Pepys are worthless. So Sandwich, as an experienced man of the world, would know that best to say nothing at all of any substance - until contradictory information can be provided, in confidence, with the expectation SP will spread this abroad.

"I perceive by Mr. Moore today that he hath been with my Lord, and my Lord how he takes it I know not, but he is looking after other security and I am mighty glad of it. ... But it was pretty this afternoon to hear W. Howe mince the matter, and say that he do believe that my Lord is in debt 2000l. or 3000l., and then corrected himself and said, No, not so, but I am afraid he is in debt 1000l."…

JWB  •  Link

Patricia, & there was this:

"I did also hear how the woman, formerly nurse to Mrs. Lemon (Sir W. Batten's daughter), her child was torn to pieces by two doggs at Walthamstow this week, and is dead, which is very strange."…

cape henry  •  Link

RG's comment struck me just so - the sense of urgency about the impending war and the idea of great animation behind the scenes of the diary have faded into fighting doggs (a sad piece, really) and perfunctory chats with Lady Sandwich.

Michael Robinson  •  Link

... which is very strange."

Good people all, of every sort,
Give ear unto my song;
And if you find it wondrous short,
It cannot hold you long.

In Islington there was a man,
Of whom the world might say
That still a godly race he ran,
Whene'er he went to pray.

A kind and gentle heart he had,
To comfort friends and foes;
The naked every day he clad,
When he put on his clothes.

And in that town a dog was found,
As many dogs there be,
Both mongrel, puppy, whelp and hound,
And curs of low degree.

This dog and man at first were friends;
But when a pique began,
The dog, to gain some private ends,
Went mad and bit the man.

Around from all the neighbouring streets
The wondering neighbours ran,
And swore the dog had lost his wits,
To bite so good a man.

The wound it seemed both sore and sad
To every Christian eye;
And while they swore the dog was mad,
They swore the man would die.

But soon a wonder came to light,
That showed the rogues they lied:
The man recovered of the bite,
The dog it was that died.

Oliver Goldsmith,
"An Elegy on the Death of a Mad Dog" (1766)…

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Interesting about the Sanwich daughters at Brampton though...It sounds innocent enough, them being called home a little early but Sam seems so sure something went wrong on the visit...And that it might be for the best that the girls left before it got worse. His father and mum are elderly, Mum's a fairly devoted rather Puritan type, and we know his dad tends to bridle at young women in fancy dress putting on airs...Perhaps John Sr. or Margaret started laying down the law to their vivacious relatives? Or complaining of the expense?

Then again John Sr. and John Jr. (if he was there) are Pepys. And with lovely young women in immediate proximity...Sam may have sensed the warning signs of great danger.


"My Lord Sandwich?" latest maid Jane stares at the furious figure who brushes her aside.

"Pepya!! Pepys!!! Come down here, goddamn you!!! Pepys!!!"

"My Lord?!" Bess in shock staring over the staircase rail... "Sam'l's off to his office."

"At six o'clock?!" Hmmn, commendable...But, "Very well, I'll seek him there!!!" whirls round.

"My Lord?! What has..." Sandwich halts in doorway, trembling...

"Your father-in-law...My daughters..." grimly...

Oh-oh...Bess sighs. Pray he just told them to go home and put on some clothes over their upper halves.

Second Reading

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"my brave dogg I did give him"

L&M remind us this was Towser, a mastiff.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

On Wednesday 27 April 1664 Pepys visited cozen Roger Pepys’ chambers for advise about Exchequer business, and also about brother John's mandamus for a fellowship. Having talked with Shepley this morning, Pepys may have had new information from dad.…

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Presumably Sandwich reimbursed the Pepys' for caring for the girls at Brampton. Taking them away might have been an economy move.

"I am glad they are gone, lest it should have come to worse." could mean that this reduces the Pepys' exposure to Sandwich debt, and bad feelings over unpaid bills.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

In January, 1664 Pepys sees Henry Commander, scrivener, because Elizabeth reminded Pepys to write his will after his cousin, Edward Pepys, died. He's doing an update following the loss of brother Tom.

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