Thursday 21 December 1665

At the office all the morning. At noon all of us dined at Captain Cocke’s at a good chine of beef, and other good meat; but, being all frost-bitten, was most of it unroast; but very merry, and a good dish of fowle we dressed ourselves. Mr. Evelyn there, in very good humour. All the afternoon till night pleasant, and then I took my leave of them and to the office, where I wrote my letters, and away home, my head full of business and some trouble for my letting my accounts go so far that I have made an oathe this night for the drinking no wine, &c., on such penalties till I have passed my accounts and cleared all. Coming home and going to bed, the boy tells me his sister Daniel has provided me a supper of little birds killed by her husband, and I made her sup with me, and after supper were alone a great while, and I had the pleasure of her lips, she being a pretty woman, and one whom a great belly becomes as well as ever I saw any. She gone, I to bed. This day I was come to by Mrs. Burrows, of Westminster, Lieutenant Burrows (lately dead) his wife, a most pretty woman and my old acquaintance; I had a kiss or two of her, and a most modest woman she is.

26 Annotations

First Reading

Australian Susan  •  Link

So what kind of promotion is Mr Daniel after?

tg  •  Link

Wow, Mrs. Daniels provides a meal of birds killed by her husband for Sam and his reward is to molest her with kisses and whatever he can get away with? And then the widow Burrows is made to submit but luckily proves to be "a most modest woman".

Patricia  •  Link

"she being a pretty woman, and one whom a great belly becomes as well as ever I saw any" Is Sam saying Mrs. Daniel is fat? Or pregnant? I remember him talking about a woman of their parish in glowing terms because of her large size...?

Patricia  •  Link

Sorry, that was Sunday, Dec. 34rd, "...and very near my fat brown beauty of our Parish, the rich merchant’s lady, a very noble woman..."

andy  •  Link

Is Sam's boy's sister Daniel and young Mrs Daniel the Lieutenants wife, one and the same? If so, surely with the boy about, more risky than usual for Sam to be canoodling with her?

"I have made an oathe this night for the drinking no wine, &c., on such penalties till I have passed my accounts and cleared all."

Time for the "&c." clause to kick in, Sam!

Tony Eldridge  •  Link

"she being a pretty woman, and one whom a great belly becomes as well as ever I saw any"
Judging by all the portraiture, they liked their women with curves in those days. Quantity was a sign of quality.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Sam, go home. You're in desperate need of Officer Bess' watchful eye and I think you know it.

Bryan M  •  Link

The answers to a couple of questions above:

On October 23

"We supped together and sat up late, he [Lord Rutherford] being a mighty wanton man with a daughter in law [Mrs Daniel] of my landlady’s, a pretty conceited woman big with child, and he would be handling her breasts, which she coyly refused."

and December 20

"So I away home, and was there sat up for to be spoken with my young Mrs. Daniel, to pray me to speake for her husband to be a Lieutenant."

A. De Araujo  •  Link

"his sister Daniel"
Most like: his sister Danielle.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"See what that fellow notes about Lord Rutherford..." Sam points to annotiation.

"...'he would be...' Mon Dieu!"

"Company, foul company...And example, hath made a sorry end of me and there's a truth. Besides all I did was..." smug tone...Halting at icy stare from Bess.

"But...Lord Rutherford...Bad example...Right here..."

"And I expect Lord Rutherford's burning in Hell. But this is about you. Make me proud of you, Sam'l." coldly.

"Ummn...? Force myself on a desperate pregnant woman over whom I had power through her husband? Hmmn...Utterly shameful, I'm sorry."

"Well, that's progress."

Margaret  •  Link

I think Mrs. Daniel is in the glowing stage of pregnancy. I'm guessing about six months gone, well after the nauseous first trimester, but before the last month or two start to drag her down.

Res Ipsa  •  Link

Andy writes: "surely with the boy about, more risky than usual for Sam to be canoodling with her"

What risk? Sam's the master. No servant would dare tell, for fear of losing his/her position. Sam's not the only one doing this sort of thing. Even Bess, as a good, loyal wife, I'm sure has been taught to "look the other way" so long as Sam doesn't flaunt it.

LSL  •  Link

Perhaps I am far too sheltered, but it seems that there has been a bit of evolution in human sexuality since Sam's time.

I doubt that most of the bureaucrats and middle managers in civil society today wander around like dogs, humping and molesting every man/ woman they can, like a dog in a dominance display. I'm not naive, I know that sex is still a "weapon" for many people. But how many of us know someone who regularly ****s around with three or four different people during business hours? Not just occasionally, but as often as possible.

This is one of those days I can equate change with progress. Man, I'm totally going to get slammed about this.

cgs  •  Link

There be 2000 ministers [read Bunyan on sin and Thos. Vincent] that are preaching about the wicked ways of man, Samuell never mentions them, as they not be in the 'A' list of the times. The nature of man is very varied, 9 out of 10 are not seen through Samuells eyes. It is never 'most' that we hear about, only a small rambunctious segment that be news worthy, so many just lead quiet lives of desperation [Thoreau].
The Inter Regnum exposed the goody two shoes side of the 'uman kind. Not all males be stallions in need of comfort, as to the modern habits of enticing the female into breeding, the female has fiscal means of curbing the over indulged.

Variations of pain [Physical or mental] curb 'uman behaviour, although too many are unable to visualize the pain gained by short term pleasure.

Australian Susan  •  Link

I think "the boy"in this instance might be the servant boy at the Greenwich house.

Saying my sister so-and-so is a common term meaning my sister married to Mr so-and-so.

Second Reading

Matt Newton  •  Link

and a good dish of fowle we dressed ourselves

Clarification please.
Dressed as in cooked? Had the shin of beef been cooked elsewhere?
Did Pepys don the pinny?

John Hawkinson  •  Link

Dressed: "Ill killed, ill dressed, ill cooked, ill served." Dr. Johnson

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"Dressing" meat means butchering, skinning, trimming, and presenting the meat, but not cooking.

"Dressed weight (also known as dead weight or carcass weight) refers to the weight of an animal after being partially butchered, removing all the internal organs and oftentimes the head as well as inedible (or less desirable) portions of the tail and legs."…

Louise Hudson  •  Link

Tg: And then the widow Burrows is made to submit but luckily proves to be "a most modest woman".

Apparently she didn’t let him get to where he wanted to go, so that made her a “most modest woman”.

LSL, you won’t get slammed. There are plenty of women who have common sense. Don’t equate us all with the lunatic fringe.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"... and a good dish of fowle we dressed ourselves."

Used to be, in my grandfather's time, undressed fowl were hung in the cool cellars (i.e. with feathers and giblets) until considered "ripe" (i.e. crawling with maggots) before being cooked. My father used to laugh about this and wondered why they did not poison themselves.

In this case it sounds as if the gang found the beef was inedible even though there was other meat to eat; they were still hungry, so they raided the larder and found this fowl hanging. They plucked the feathers and pulled the giblets and threw it in a pot. A group effort took over the kitchen -- who knows what happened to the cook and the maids. It sounds like they had fun -- but I suspect Capt. Cocke had some strong words for the staff later.

Matt Newton  •  Link

Good points above. Many thanks.
The lads appear to be frequenting Mr. Cooke a lot recently.
At first I thought this was a hostelry but it is a private house/ residency?
A rich merchant. And popular.

john  •  Link

On my first round through the diary, I was appalled at Pepys's behaviour. On this second round, I observe without judgement.

Harvey L  •  Link

In another 350 years, should any of us have a diary that survives to be read (and is worth reading), I suspect that many of the things we consider normal will seen just as outrageous by the standards of that day.

Like John, I observe without judgement.

Timo  •  Link

Unlike the gentlemen above, I find myself applauding and cheering our boy on.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Matt Newton: Capt. Cocke was a rich merchant who, during non-plague times, lived in London. From Pepys' diary entries it sounds as if he had a gracious house in Greenwich too ... whether it was a rental just for the plague times, or his own property, so far Pepys has not told us. For more info on this fascinating merchant, click through on his name (in blue above) and you'll find his encyclopedia entry with all sorts of wonderful info. about him and his wife.…

Log in to post an annotation.

If you don't have an account, then register here.