Wednesday 23 January 1666/67

Up, and with Sir W. Batten and Sir W. Pen to White Hall, and there to the Duke of York, and did our usual business. Having done there, I to St. James’s, to see the organ Mrs. Turner told me of the other night, of my late Lord Aubigney’s; and I took my Lord Bruncker with me, he being acquainted with my present Lord Almoner, Mr. Howard, brother to the Duke of Norfolke; so he and I thither and did see the organ, but I do not like it, it being but a bauble, with a virginall joining to it: so I shall not meddle with it. Here we sat and talked with him a good while, and he seems a good-natured gentleman: here I observed the deske which he hath, [made] to remove, and is fastened to one of the armes of his chayre. I do also observe the counterfeit windows there was, in the form of doors with looking-glasses instead of windows, which makes the room seem both bigger and lighter, I think; and I have some thoughts to have the like in one of my rooms. He discoursed much of the goodness of the musique in Rome, but could not tell me how long musique had been in any perfection in that church, which I would be glad to know. He speaks much of the great buildings that this Pope, whom, in mirth to us, he calls Antichrist, hath done in his time. Having done with the discourse, we away, and my Lord and I walking into the Park back again, I did observe the new buildings: and my Lord, seeing I had a desire to see them, they being the place for the priests and fryers, he took me back to my Lord Almoner; and he took us quite through the whole house and chapel, and the new monastery, showing me most excellent pieces in wax-worke: a crucifix given by a Pope to Mary Queen of Scotts, where a piece of the Cross is;1 two bits set in the manner of a cross in the foot of the crucifix: several fine pictures, but especially very good prints of holy pictures. I saw the dortoire —[dormitory]— and the cells of the priests, and we went into one; a very pretty little room, very clean, hung with pictures, set with books. The Priest was in his cell, with his hair clothes to his skin, bare-legged, with a sandall only on, and his little bed without sheets, and no feather bed; but yet, I thought, soft enough. His cord about his middle; but in so good company, living with ease, I thought it a very good life. A pretty library they have. And I was in the refectoire, where every man his napkin, knife, cup of earth,2 and basin of the same; and a place for one to sit and read while the rest are at meals. And into the kitchen I went, where a good neck of mutton at the fire, and other victuals boiling. I do not think they fared very hard. Their windows all looking into a fine garden and the Park; and mighty pretty rooms all. I wished myself one of the Capuchins. Having seen what we could here, and all with mighty pleasure, so away with the Almoner in his coach, talking merrily about the difference in our religions, to White Hall, and there we left him. I in my Lord Bruncker’s coach, he carried me to the Savoy, and there we parted. I to the Castle Tavern, where was and did come all our company, Sir W. Batten, [Sir] W. Pen, [Sir] R. Ford, and our Counsel Sir Ellis Layton, Walt Walker, Dr. Budd, Mr. Holder, and several others, and here we had a bad dinner of our preparing, and did discourse something of our business of our prizes, which was the work of the day. I staid till dinner was over, and there being no use of me I away after dinner without taking leave, and to the New Exchange, there to take up my wife and Mercer, and to Temple Bar to the Ordinary, and had a dish of meat for them, they having not dined, and thence to the King’s house, and there saw “The Humerous Lieutenant,” a silly play, I think; only the Spirit in it that grows very tall, and then sinks again to nothing, having two heads breeding upon one, and then Knipp’s singing, did please us. Here, in a box above, we spied Mrs. Pierce; and, going out, they called us, and so we staid for them; and Knipp took us all in, and brought to us Nelly; a most pretty woman, who acted the great part of Coelia to-day very fine, and did it pretty well: I kissed her, and so did my wife; and a mighty pretty soul she is. We also saw Mrs. Halls which is my little Roman-nose black girl, that is mighty pretty: she is usually called Betty. Knipp made us stay in a box and see the dancing preparatory to to-morrow for “The Goblins,” a play of Suckling’s, not acted these twenty-five years; which was pretty; and so away thence, pleased with this sight also, and specially kissing of Nell. We away, Mr. Pierce and I, on foot to his house, the women by coach. In our way we find the Guards of horse in the street, and hear the occasion to be news that the seamen are in a mutiny, which put me into a great fright; so away with my wife and Mercer home preparing against to-morrow night to have Mrs. Pierce and Knipp and a great deal more company to dance; and, when I come home, hear of no disturbance there of the seamen, but that one of them, being arrested to-day, others do go and rescue him. So to the office a little, and then home to supper, and to my chamber awhile, and then to bed.

26 Annotations

Terry Foreman  •  Link

The Royal Society today at Arundel House — from the Hooke Folio Online

Ian 23. 1666. The expt. of bending a spring by the force of powder was tryed 3 times wthout success & the 4th it succeeded. to be repeated next meeting. & tht a weight should be wound vp by a shot of gunpowder to see what force would wind vp a 100 pound weight was obserued the stroke of powder was soe brisk & suddain that it would break any thing & tht therefore Little powder should be vsed.

(Blunts chariot)

a liue grey gull.) Charlton 2 gr of nux vomica [ ] killd a linet) also /a/ Gray Gull)

wallis Letter about Heuelius [ ] of 2d comet & mantssa
[ ]

Orderd that mr Hook bring in something written touching the controuersy between mr Heuelius & mor Auzout which may import that vpon the Examination of Obseruations made here & Compared wth those made in other parts the Society is inclined to beleiue that Heuelius hath been mistaken. The Curator [ mr Hooke ] affirmd that the altitude of the sun or other starrs might be taken wth a single 6 foot telescope put perpendicular wthout any refraction or Parallax and that in the space of 2 or 3 minutes orderd that it should be tryed & the sucesse & way of doing it Registred

the same [ mr Hooke ] affirmed that the circumference of the earth might be measured to seconds by a 60 foot glasse put perpendicular a place being giuen where the Distance may be conueniently measurd, such a one as mayu be smooth and a mile long lying north & south or at Least N E & S West. Orderd that the curator [ mr Hooke ] doe make this experiment as soon as a place can be found conuenient for it. the . . .

(about globe of the moon)

The Instrument for bringing vp things from the bottom of the sea now being againe mentiond the curator tooke notice that this as it is now hauing been tryed would bring vp things only from a small depth but that he would try other ways for greater depth.

The Curator affirmd that venus had lately appeard to him in a 12 foot glasse as big againe as the moon to the naked eye adding he neuer saw her soe sharp & that shee was very neer the sun wth. whom shee would be in coniunction in a few day[s] -

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"I thither and did see the organ, but I do not like it, it being but a bauble, with a virginall joining to it:"

L&M say this is a claviorganum. Here a sample of it played a piece Pepys might well have heard:

William Byrd, Queens Alman (CLAVIORGANUM)

Info about the dance the piece was to accompany; other music:
Alman (The Queen's Alman), for keyboard, MB 10
"The Alman is a more heavie daunce than [the galliard], so that no extraordinary motions are used in dauncing of it." (Morley)

Michael Robinson  •  Link

" ... living with ease, I thought it a very good life. ... I wished myself one of the Capuchins. ..."

Forsaking actresses, barmaids and the various Bettys ? Perhaps the obligations of celibacy could be negotiated as easily as those of matrimony and would not involve difficulties similar to yesterday's dilemma, "but my wife vexed, which vexed me; but I seemed merry, but know not how to order the matter, whether they shall come or no."

CGS  •  Link

Interesting turn of speech
"...with his hair clothes to his skin, bare-legged..."

CGS  •  Link

nux vomica : original Latin ???
vomica sore, ulcer,abscess ,boil
vomo, ere to throw up or....
nux: it be nut, nut tree, almond.
thus a sore almond tree???????

CGS  •  Link

"...did discourse something of our business of our prizes, which was the work of the day...."
Ah ! everyone seeks their bonuses, 17C, a ship breaking the Law full of derivatives.
Today, ?

CGS  •  Link

Thankes Terry:
should have looked at OED
so back to the modern Sackcloth and ashes.

1. Cloth or fabric made of hair, used for various purposes, as for tents, towels, shirts of penitents and ascetics; also in drying malt, hops, or the like.
1500 ...
. 1613 SHERLEY Trav. Persia 19 Tents of blacke haire-cloth.
1764 HARMER Observ. ii. §17. 75 The same sort of hair-cloth of which our coal-sacks are made.

2. An article (as a shirt, towel, etc.) made of this fabric.
1548 UDALL, etc. Erasm. Par. Matt. xi. 68 Woulde haue doen penaunce in heerclothes and ashes.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Ormond to Arlington
Written from: Dublin
Date: 23 January 1667

Has received Lord Arlington’s of the 15th … From other hands, is assured that the Lords would never have inserted, in the Irish Cattle Bill, the word “nuisance”, if the King had not interposed his commands. God send that he may find them as ready to obey, when he would have his prerogative supported …

… Sir William Temple sends advertisements … that the French preparations are bent for Ireland, and that the design is like to be executed betwixt this & May …

One Michael Mansell, an Irish Franciscan … stays still at London. By his hands, the dispatches to & from the worst of the Irish Clergy are conveyed …

Michael Robinson  •  Link

“…with his hair clothes to his skin, bare-legged…”

Hairshirt (Latin cilicium; French cilice).
A garment of rough cloth made from goats' hair and worn in the form of a shirt or as a girdle around the loins, by way of mortification and penance. The Latin name is said to be derived from Cilicia, where this cloth was made, but the thing itself was probably known and used long before this name was given to it. The sackcloth, for instance, so often mentioned in Holy Scripture as a symbol of mourning and penance, was probably the same thing; and the garment of camels' hair worn by St. John the Baptist was no doubt somewhat similar. The earliest Scriptural use of the word in its Latin form occurs in the Vulgate version of Psalm 34:13, "Ego autem, cum mihi molesti essent, induebar cilicio." This is translated hair-cloth in the Douay Bible, and sackcloth in the Anglican Authorized Version and the Book of Common Prayer.

During the early ages of Christianity the use of hair-cloth, as a means of bodily mortification and as an aid to the wearer in resisting temptations of the flesh, became very common, not only amongst the ascetics and those who aspired to the life of perfection, but even amongst ordinary lay people in the world, who made it serve as an unostentatious antidote for the outward luxury and comfort of their lives. St. Jerome, for instance, mentions the hairshirt as being frequently worn under the rich and splendid robes of men in high worldly positions.
... Later on, it was adopted by most of the religious orders of the Middle Ages, in imitation of the early ascetics, and in order to increase the discomfort caused by its use it was sometimes even made of fine wire. It was not confined to the monks, but continued to be fairly common amongst lay people also. ..."

These, and other devices for those into mortification, can be purchased still for shipment worldwide "in discrete packaging" from: .Somehow, even given SP's affection for catholic religious images, ... nothing like this is mentioned in the most solemn of his vows but who knows what other private enthusiasms may lurk in the interstices and babel of languages in SP's most oblique passages ... but I stray into a Gertzian universe.

Paul Chapin  •  Link

"and so away thence, pleased with this sight also, and specially kissing of Nell."

I would guess so! A little like going to the theater today and being invited backstage to kiss Angelina Jolie.

Mary  •  Link

nux vomica

fruit/dried seeds of the tree strychnos nux vomica, which grows in eastern India, southeast Asia and northern Australia. Contains the alkaloids strychnine and brucine. In medicinal use for many centuries and still used in some homeopathic remedies.

B Timbrell  •  Link

Why is this part of London called the Savoy? - obviously a long time before the hotel of the same name appeared

Mary  •  Link

The area acquired the name Savoy after it was granted by Henry III to the queen's uncle, Peter of Savoy, in 1246.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Howard's urbanity, making a little joke about his Pope to please his Protestant guests, was charming. I suppose given the recent rages and paranoia over the Fire and even the Plague, he's on guard not to give offense. Perhaps, since he is a leading English Catholic, he's even heard of Sam's fascination with things Catholic.

Monkish existence when the creature comforts are fairly well guaranteed has its charms, at least in theory.



"Bwwwha...Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!!!"


"Ah, ha, ha, ha...Oh, mon Dieu...Oh, Sam'l...I'm sorry...Ha, ha..."

"It's not that funny."

"You...A monk?"

"Would've thought you'd be pleased..."

"Oh, Sam'l...Come on... 'Sides, what about me?"

"Well, after...Or, perhaps we could've been like Abelard and Heloise..."

"Oh...I suppose I should kiss you for that. But me as Heloise? You know what my letters are like, let alone me trying to live in a cloister."

"I hear she dressed pretty well for a nun."

"Abelard and Heloise...Us?"

"Just a thought..."

"Lot of vows broken for our cloistered duo."

"Bess, I'm not totally incapable..."

"I mean me...How about Abelard and Heloise sharing a cell?"

"That could work..."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Nice to have connections in the theater...Go backstage, meet the rising young star, see a rehearsal.

CGS  •  Link

great catch.

Australian Susan  •  Link

"..His cord about his middle..."

As this is written in conjunction with the information that the monk was wearing a Hairshirt, this was probably a knotted cord worn tightly to give discomfort as part and parcel of the whole hairshirt wearing practice. Some people wear metal strips bound round the thighs today. See
Bess might have been very interested in all this........!

Glyn  •  Link

B Timbrell, following on from Mary's posting, if you go past the hotel you'll see a golden statue of Count Peter above the main entrance.

Where exactly is this building that Pepys was visiting?

Harvey  •  Link

"...Nux vomica... Contains the alkaloids strychnine and brucine. In medicinal use for many centuries and still used in some homeopathic remedies...."

A very old tonic ingredient, probably used in Pepys time for this and continued to be used until around 1950. The strychnine in small doses had a stimulant effect for those lacking energy. In large doses too, stimulted to the point where all muscles went into severe contractions and the patient died in a characteristic pose according to which muscles were the most powerful.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"I thither and did see the organ, but I do not like it, it being but a bauble, with a virginall joining to it:"

L&M say this is a claviorganum. Here a sample of it played a piece Pepys might well have heard:

William Byrd, Queens Alman (CLAVIORGANUM)

Info about the dance the piece was to accompany:
"The Alman is a more heavie daunce than [the galliard], so that no extraordinary motions are used in dauncing of it." (Morley)

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"news that the seamen are in a mutiny"

L&M suggest possibly the mutiny of the men of the York and Eagle: CSPD 1666-7, p. 468.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Glyn asks: "Where exactly is this building that Pepys was visiting?"

L&M say these lay to the east of St James's Palace; they were begun inOctober 1664 and finished in May 1666.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"I wished myself one of the Capuchins."

L&M: Observant Franciscans, in this case Portuguese.

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