Monday 15 January 1665/66

Busy all the morning in my chamber in my old cloth suit, while my usuall one is to my taylor’s to mend, which I had at noon again, and an answer to a letter I had sent this morning to Mrs. Pierce to go along with my wife and I down to Greenwich to-night upon an invitation to Mr. Boreman’s to be merry to dance and sing with Mrs. Knipp. Being dressed, and having dined, I took coach and to Mrs. Pierce, to her new house in Covent-Garden, a very fine place and fine house. Took her thence home to my house, and so by water to Boreman’s by night, where the greatest disappointment that ever I saw in my life, much company, a good supper provided, and all come with expectation of excesse of mirthe, but all blank through the waywardnesse of Mrs. Knipp, who, though she had appointed the night, could not be got to come. Not so much as her husband could get her to come; but, which was a pleasant thing in all my anger, I asking him, while we were in expectation what answer one of our many messengers would bring, what he thought, whether she would come or no, he answered that, for his part, he could not so much as thinke. By and by we all to supper, which the silly master of the feast commended, but, what with my being out of humour, and the badnesse of the meate dressed, I did never eat a worse supper in my life. At last, very late, and supper done, she came undressed, but it brought me no mirthe at all; only, after all being done, without singing, or very little, and no dancing, Pierce and I to bed together, and he and I very merry to find how little and thin clothes they give us to cover us, so that we were fain to lie in our stockings and drawers, and lay all our coates and clothes upon the bed. So to sleep.

14 Annotations

First Reading

Margaret  •  Link

Is Mrs. Knipp being a spoiled star, or is she perhaps feeling ill or suffering from depression?

cgs  •  Link

Is there a MD in the bleachers?, Mood swings so little understood.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Given Chris Knipp's somewhat evasive answer perhaps Sam should recall his Xmas black eye to Bess for a possible cause of poor Mrs. Knipp's reluctance...

Though it may be completely unfair to Chris to compare him to Sam.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"all come with expectation of excesse of mirthe, but all blank through the waywardnesse of Mrs. Knipp"

It makes sense to seek mirth after the pall [not Pall!] of the plague; but I wonder whether I'd seek an "excess" of "mirth." Methinks "blank" is very evocative here!

Paul Chapin  •  Link

"At last, very late, and supper done, she came undressed"

I presume the "she" here is Mrs. Knipp, and that the "undressed" doesn't mean she arrived in the nude, but rather in ordinary house clothes rather than party clothes. But wrt Robert Gertz's comment, if she had shown any signs of physical abuse, Sam would probably have mentioned it.

andy  •  Link

Mrs Knipp showing all the signs of sexual harassment by one of the party goers.

Mr K could hardly say "Well she's not coming because you're here Sam" could he?

Tony Eldridge  •  Link

"Pierce and I to bed together"

Why, when their wives are presumably also staying the night?

Mary  •  Link

Perhaps there was only one 'best' spare bed.

In which case it was probably assigned to the ladies, whilst the gentlemen had to bunk together as best they might. Clearly there was a shortage of bed-coverings.

Betty  •  Link

A thought about Mrs. Knipp's behavior. Perhaps she didn't want to have to be mirthful with Sam's wife in the room. Jealousy, guilt, or maybe she just didn't feel comfortable with the dynamics.

C.J.Darby  •  Link

In the nip as it were

JWB  •  Link

Mrs. Knipp

Isn't this how an actress playing "Barbary Allen" would act?

JWB  •  Link

Sweet Wm. pined to death. D.D. may die of hypothermia.

Second Reading

Tonyel  •  Link

"in my old cloth suit, while my usuall one is to my taylor’s to mend, which I had at noon again."

And we think Amazon Prime is speedy!

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