Saturday 19 August 1665
I also wrote letters, and made myself ready to go to Sir G. Carteret, at Windsor; and having borrowed a horse of Mr. Blackbrough, sent him to wait for me at the Duke of Albemarle’s door: when, on a sudden, a letter comes to us from the Duke of Albemarle, to tell us that the fleete is all come back to Solebay, and are presently to be dispatched back again. Whereupon I presently by water to the Duke of Albemarle to know what news; and there I saw a letter from my Lord Sandwich to the Duke of Albemarle, and also from Sir W. Coventry and Captain Teddiman; how my Lord having commanded Teddiman with twenty-two ships1 (of which but fifteen could get thither, and of those fifteen but eight or nine could come up to play) to go to Bergen; where, after several messages to and fro from the Governor of the Castle, urging that Teddiman ought not to come thither with more than five ships, and desiring time to think of it, all the while he suffering the Dutch ships to land their guns to their best advantage; Teddiman on the second pretence, began to play at the Dutch ships, (wherof ten East India-men,) and in three hours’ time (the town and castle, without any provocation, playing on our ships,) they did cut all our cables, so as the wind being off the land, did force us to go out, and rendered our fire-ships useless; without doing any thing, but what hurt of course our guns must have done them: we having lost five commanders, besides Mr. Edward Montagu, and Mr. Windham.2
Our fleete is come home to our great grief with not above five weeks’ dry, and six days’ wet provisions: however, must out again; and the Duke hath ordered the Soveraigne, and all other ships ready, to go out to the fleete to strengthen them. This news troubles us all, but cannot be helped. Having read all this news, and received commands of the Duke with great content, he giving me the words which to my great joy he hath several times said to me, that his greatest reliance is upon me. And my Lord Craven also did come out to talk with me, and told me that I am in mighty esteem with the Duke, for which I bless God.
Home, and having given my fellow-officers an account hereof, to Chatham, and wrote other letters, I by water to Charing-Cross, to the post-house, and there the people tell me they are shut up; and so I went to the new post-house, and there got a guide and horses to Hounslow, where I was mightily taken with a little girle, the daughter of the master of the house (Betty Gysby), which, if she lives, will make a great beauty.
Here I met with a fine fellow who, while I staid for my horses, did enquire newes, but I could not make him remember Bergen in Norway, in 6 or 7 times telling, so ignorant he was.
So to Stanes, and there by this time it was dark night, and got a guide who lost his way in the forest, till by help of the moone (which recompenses me for all the pains I ever took about studying of her motions,) I led my guide into the way back again; and so we made a man rise that kept a gate, and so he carried us to Cranborne.
Where in the dark I perceive an old house new building with a great deal of rubbish, and was fain to go up a ladder to Sir G. Carteret’s chamber. And there in his bed I sat down, and told him all my bad newes, which troubled him mightily; but yet we were very merry, and made the best of it; and being myself weary did take leave, and after having spoken with Mr. Fenn in bed, I to bed in my Lady’s chamber that she uses to lie in, and where the Duchesse of York, that now is, was born. So to sleep; being very well, but weary, and the better by having carried with me a bottle of strong water; whereof now and then a sip did me good.