Saturday 21 April 1666
Up betimes and to the office, there to prepare some things against the afternoon for discourse about the business of the pursers and settling the pursers’ matters of the fleete according to my proposition. By and by the office sat, and they being up I continued at the office to finish my matters against the meeting before the Duke this afternoon, so home about three to clap a bit of meate in my mouth, and so away with Sir W. Batten to White Hall, and there to the Duke, but he being to go abroad to take the ayre, he dismissed us presently without doing any thing till to-morrow morning. So my Lord Bruncker and I down to walk in the garden [at White Hall], it being a mighty hot and pleasant day; and there was the King, who, among others, talked to us a little; and among other pretty things, he swore merrily that he believed the ketch that Sir W. Batten bought the last year at Colchester was of his own getting, it was so thick to its length. Another pleasant thing he said of Christopher Pett, commending him that he will not alter his moulds of his ships upon any man’s advice; “as,” says he, “Commissioner Taylor I fear do of his New London, that he makes it differ, in hopes of mending the Old London, built by him.” “For,” says he, “he finds that God hath put him into the right, and so will keep in it while he is in.” “And,” says the King, “I am sure it must be God put him in, for no art of his owne ever could have done it;” for it seems he cannot give a good account of what he do as an artist.
Thence with my Lord Bruncker in his coach to Hide Parke, the first time I have been there this year. There the King was; but I was sorry to see my Lady Castlemaine, for the mourning forceing all the ladies to go in black, with their hair plain and without any spots, I find her to be a much more ordinary woman than ever I durst have thought she was; and, indeed, is not so pretty as Mrs. Stewart, whom I saw there also. Having done at the Park he set me down at the Exchange, and I by coach home and there to my letters, and they being done, to writing a large letter about the business of the pursers to Sir W. Batten against to-morrow’s discourse, and so home and to bed.