Monday 20 August 1666

Waked this morning, about six o’clock, with a violent knocking at Sir J. Minnes’s doore, to call up Mrs. Hammon, crying out that Sir J. Minnes is a-dying. He come home ill of an ague on Friday night. I saw him on Saturday, after his fit of the ague, and then was pretty lusty. Which troubles me mightily, for he is a very good, harmless, honest gentleman, though not fit for the business. But I much fear a worse may come, that may be more uneasy to me.

Up, and to Deptford by water, reading “Othello, Moore of Venice,” which I ever heretofore esteemed a mighty good play, but having so lately read “The Adventures of Five Houres,” it seems a mean thing.

Walked back, and so home, and then down to the Old Swan and drank at Betty Michell’s, and so to Westminster to the Exchequer about my quarter tallies, and so to Lumbard Streete to choose stuff to hang my new intended closet, and have chosen purple. So home to dinner, and all the afternoon till almost midnight upon my Tangier accounts, getting Tom Wilson to help me in writing as I read, and at night W. Hewer, and find myself most happy in the keeping of all my accounts, for that after all the changings and turnings necessary in such an account, I find myself right to a farthing in an account of 127,000l.. This afternoon I visited Sir J. Minnes, who, poor man, is much impatient by these few days’ sickness, and I fear indeed it will kill him.

17 Annotations

First Reading

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Poor Sir John...

Though at least in his case we cannot say the King hath killed his heart.

But thank God our Shakespearian scholar has no knowledge of Pepys' slide toward the blockbuster with "Adventure..."

On the other hand no one can accuse our boy of pretension...In literary matters...In private...


127,000Ls? Well done, Sam. Just had to account for $225,000 dollars myself so I know how it is.

cgs  •  Link

going up in the world
A. adj.

1. a. Originally: of a crimson shade obtained from mollusc dye (see sense B. 4), used in various ways as a distinguishing feature of the dress of emperors, senior magistrates, senators, and members of the equestrian class of ancient Rome, and of the imperial family of Byzantium. In later use: of a shade of red similar to this, worn by emperors, kings, cardinals, etc. Now chiefly hist.

cgs  •  Link

Not in the red, but he be in the black but purple will tell the world his status.
some purple comments? OED
c. Chiefly poet. Of the colour of blood; bloody, bloodstained (lit. and fig.).
In quot. 1878 spec. of crimson venous blood (the colour of arterial blood being scarlet).
1590 SPENSER Faerie Queene II. vi. 29 A large purple streame adowne their giambeux falles.

3. fig. Characterized by richness or abundance; splendid, glorious; (of emotion) deeply felt or extravagantly expressed; (of literary composition) elaborate, excessively ornate (see purple passage n. at Special uses

2c, purple prose n. at Special uses 2c, and PURPLE PATCH n. 1).

1598 QUEEN ELIZABETH I tr. Horace De Arte Poetica in Queen Elizabeth's Englishings (1899) 142 Oft to beginnings graue and shewes of great is sowed A purple [Latin purpureus] pace, one or more for vewe.

1697 DRYDEN tr. Virgil Pastorals II, in tr. Virgil Wks. 8 All the Glories of the Purple Spring.

B. n.

1. a. Purple cloth or clothing, esp. regarded as a luxury or form of ostentation; a purple robe or garment; = PURPURE n.
purple and pall = purpure and pall at PURPURE n. 1 (now arch. and poet.).

b. spec. Purple or purple-trimmed clothing as the distinguishing dress of emperors, kings, etc. (see sense A. 1a). Also fig., esp. with the: imperial or royal rank, power, or office. Also: purple clothing as worn for imperial and royal mourning (cf. sense A. 2b).
c1425 ...
1610 P. HOLLAND tr. W. Camden Brit. I. 271 Constantine..laid aside the purple and..became a Priest.
1698 J. CROWNE Caligula II. 16 Princes are slaves in purple, slaves in grain.
c. With the. The official scarlet dress of a cardinal; (fig.) the rank, state, or office of a cardinal, the cardinalate.
1670 G. HAVERS tr. G. Leti Il Cardinalismo di Santa Chiesa III. III. 304 Without Bribery, or Subornation, he had attain'd to the dignity of the Purple.

d. born to (also in) (the) purple: born into an imperial or royal reigning family. Also in extended use.
1681 tr. E. Scholasticus Epiphaniensis Eccl. Hist. VI. xxiv. 526/2 (note) The most noble Theodosius was born in purple on the third year of Mauricius's Empire.
1703 D. WILLIAMSON Serm. preached Edinb. 54, I cannot but lament the unhappy fate of the Princes who are born in purple, and bred in Luxury.

Michael Robinson  •  Link

" ... but having so lately read “The Adventures of Five Houres,” it seems a mean thing."

Reading in a boat lacked, perhaps, additional excitement:

" ... to the Cockpitt to see “The Moore of Venice,” which was well done. ... ‘by the same token, a very pretty lady that sat by me, called out, to see Desdemona smothered. ..."…

Michael Robinson  •  Link

"... Which troubles me mightily, for he is a very good, harmless, honest gentleman, though not fit for the business. But I much fear a worse may come, ..."

Does that mean someone fit for business who might inquire into SP's subsidiary profit centers?

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"Mrs. Hammon?"

"Oh, Mr. Pepys..."

"No...Surely not...Oh, poor Sir John..."

"Oh, a' made a finer end and went away an it had been any christom child. A' parted even just between twelve
and one, even at the turning o' the tide: for after
I saw him fumble with the sheets and play with
flowers and smile upon his fingers' ends, I knew
there was but one way; for his nose was as sharp as
a pen, and a' babbled of green fields. 'How now,
sir John!' quoth I 'what, man! be o' good
cheer.' So a' cried out 'God, God, God!' three or
four times. Now I, to comfort him, bid him a'
should not think of God; I hoped there was no need
to trouble himself with any such thoughts yet. So
a' bade me lay more clothes on his feet: I put my
hand into the bed and felt them, and they were as
cold as any stone; then I felt to his knees, and
they were as cold as any stone, and so upward and
upward, and all was as cold as any stone." Weeps...

"Oh, my..."

Clapping from behind Mrs. Hammon... "Bravo, Mistress Hammon! Henry V, Pepys. Better than '...Five Hours', I should say, eh?"

"Sir John, really."

"I appreciate the tears, Samuel." Sir John beams.

Bradford  •  Link

Shall those of us having a passing familiarity with "Othello" read "The Adventure of Five Houres" and see if Pepys is right?

arby  •  Link

Relax, Alec, I'm sure it means nothing.

Nix  •  Link

Alec, it was probably something you ate.

cgs  •  Link

Thanks to the Hollanders whom provided engineering Talent to remove the bogs of Essex, Surrey, Hertforshire, Huntingdonshire, Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire amongst other obnoxious lands..
The Lee Valley was notorious for wet feet.

Ric Jerrom  •  Link

"...Sir J. Minnes, who, poor man, is much impatient..." I think this may be an old usage meaning something like "... is very weakened...": is, in other words, more and more a patient in the modern medical sense. I have no evidence for this !

Mary  •  Link

Ric Jerrom says that he has no evidence for his interpretation, and I can't find any.

cgs  •  Link

see OED thoughts
variations of not waiting or being a doctors customer.
[[not] patient [not] enduring hardship without complaint ]
lifted from OED
impatient, a. (n.)
[a. OF. impacient, impatient, ad. L. impatient-em, f. im- (IM-2) + patient-em suffering, pres. pple. of pat{imac} to suffer.]

1. Not patient; not bearing or enduring (pain, discomfort, opposition, etc.) with composure; wanting in endurance; irritable, irascible, easily provoked. Also transf. of action or speech: Indicating impatience or irritation.
1666 PEPYS Diary 20 Aug., [He] is much impatient by these few days sickness.
b. With of: Unable or unwilling to endure or put up with; intolerant of.

1601 SHAKES. Jul. C. IV. iii. 152 Impatient of my absence..she fell distract.

c. With inf. (obs. or arch.) or dependent clause.
(With inf., practically the opposite of 2b.)
1565 EARL OF BEDFORD in Ellis Orig. Lett. Ser. I. II. 209 He was so impatient to see those thyngs he sawe and were dayly broughte to his Eares.
1615 G. SANDYS Trav. 145 The Jewes impatient that forrieners should possesse their countrey, raised a new commotion.

1632 J. HAYWARD tr. Biondi's Eromena 182 Impatient to stay till they would speake.

d. fig. (Said of things.)
1597 GERARDE Herbal II. xviii. (1633) 260 Impatient Lady Smocke..The nature of this plant [noli me tangere] is such, that if you touch but the cods when the seed is ripe, tho'..neuer so gently, yet will the seed fly all abroad with violence as disdaining to be touched.

2. That does not willingly endure delay; uneasy or restless in desire or expectation. Const. for.
1592 SHAKES. Rom. & Jul. III. ii. 30 Tedious..As is the night before some Festiuall, To an impatient child that hath new robes And may not weare them.

3. ? Intolerable, ‘not to be borne’ (J.). Obs. rare.
1590 SPENSER F.Q. II. i. 44 Ay, me! deare Lady, which the ymage art Of ruefull pitty and impatient smart. 1646 SIR T. BROWNE Pseud. Ep. IV. x. 204 What absurd conceits they will swallow in their literals, an impatient example wee have in our owne profession.

B. as n. An impatient person. (Sometimes with play on PATIENT n.)
1502 ..
1580 LUPTON Sivqila 130 When the Surgeon came before the Judge, and saw his poore Impatient there. ?
16.. Seasonable Serm. 39 (T.) Some ignorant impatients, when they have found themselves to smart with God's scourge

[< Anglo-Norman and Middle French pacient, patient (French patient) (adjective) tolerant (first half of the 12th cent. in Anglo-Norman as pacient), enduring hardship without complaint (second half of the 14th cent.),

undergoing an action (1370-2 in philosophical context), (noun) sick person (14th cent.), person who undergoes an action (c1380) and its etymon classical Latin patient-, pati{emac}ns able or willing to endure or undergo, capable of enduring hardship, long-suffering, tolerant (in post-classical Latin also as noun, person who endures (5th cent.), person who undergoes some action (a1250, c1470 in British sources in philosophical context)),

use as adjective of present participle of pat{imac} to suffer, perhaps < the same Indo-European base as ancient Greek {pi}{ghacu}{mu}{alpha} suffering. Compare (all earliest in sense A. 1a) Old Occitan pacien (c1200 as adjective, c1300 as noun in medical sense), Italian paziente (13th cent. as adjective, c1350 as noun in medical sense),

Spanish paciente (1251 or earlier as adjective, 14th cent. or earlier in form paçiente as noun in medical sense, a1418 or earlier in sense ‘person who undergoes an action’ in philosophical context), Portuguese paciente (13th cent. as adjective in form {dag}paciinte), Catalan pacient (a1315 as adjective and noun in medical sense).

With patient dock (see patient dock n. at Special uses) compare earlier PATIENCE DOCK n.

With senses A. 2b, B. 4b compare post-classical Latin patiens, also casus patiens, used in French context by Troubetskoy 1929, in Bull. de la Soc. de Linguistique de Paris 29 170.]

Second Reading

Ivan  •  Link

The Adventures of five hours must be a superb play indeed, if by its side Othello "seems a mean thing." I am afraid I have never heard of Sir Samuel Tuke's magnificent comedy nor its author, sad to say. Posterity has valued Shakespeare's Othello rather higher on the scale of dramatic masterpieces than Tuke's Adventures, however. I look forward to Sam's next literary bon mots!

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"my quarter tallies, "

Payments for a quarter's expenditure for Tangier. (L&M)

Third Reading

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Purple was an important color in ancient Rome, with laws specifying that only the emperor could wear a solid purple toga.
Tyrian purple was named after the Phoenician city of Tyre, where the dye was first made, and it was considered the best purple dye. It was made by crushing sea snails, and tens of thousands of snails were needed to stain one piece of cloth, making it more valuable than gold by weight. -- Source: The Collector

Anyone know how purple was made in Pepys' day? The ruling elites must have obliterated the sea snails by now.

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