Saturday 8 June 1667

Up, and to the office, where all the news this morning is, that the Dutch are come with a fleete of eighty sail to Harwich, and that guns were heard plain by Sir W. Rider’s people at Bednallgreene, all yesterday even. So to the office, we all sat all the morning, and then home to dinner, where our dinner a ham of French bacon, boiled with pigeons, an excellent dish. Here dined with us only W. Hewer and his mother. After dinner to the office again, where busy till night, and then home and to read a little and then to bed. The news is confirmed that the Dutch are off of Harwich, but had done nothing last night. The King hath sent down my Lord of Oxford to raise the countries there; and all the Westerne barges are taken up to make a bridge over the River, about the Hope, for horse to cross the River, if there be occasion.


8 Jun 2010, 10:10 p.m. - Robert Gertz

Uh-oh.

8 Jun 2010, 10:13 p.m. - Robert Gertz

"So to the office, we all sat all the morning, and then home to dinner, where our dinner a ham of French bacon, boiled with pigeons, an excellent dish." Caught fresh outside, no doubt... Oh, well, with disaster a stone's throw away, might as well enjoy a good boiled pigeon.

8 Jun 2010, 10:19 p.m. - Terry Foreman

Pigeons? (The Pepys's meal as a metaphor.)

8 Jun 2010, 11:26 p.m. - Andrew Hamilton

that the Dutch are come with a fleete of eighty sail to Harwich, Spoiler. Bad intelligence, Sam, as tomorrow will reveal.

9 Jun 2010, 2:15 p.m. - JWB

''The wife dies and the husband wants to know what's in those pages—..any infidelity,"' "Do You Know, Offhand, Anyone Who Knows Shorthand? As a Skill Fades, Translators Are in Demand; Ms. Sanders Charges 20.5 Cents a Word"(plus 0.20/minute) Barry Newman, today's page 1, Wall Street Journal

5 Jul 2016, 7:52 p.m. - Terry Foreman

"The King hath sent down my Lord of Oxford to raise the countries there;" L&M note the Earl of Oxford was Colonel of the Royal Regiment of Horse (the Oxford Blues), and also Lord Lieutenant of Essex, Oxfordshire and Hertfordshire. "all the Westerne barges are taken up to make a bridge over the River, about the Hope, for horse to cross the River, if there be occasion." Western barges plied between the upstream ports (Windsor, Maidenhead, etc.) and the capital. Many brought corn and market produce to Queenhithe. They had been used before for the building of bridges -- in 1588 at Tilbury, and 1642 at Putney. (L&M footnote)

8 May 2020, 1:40 p.m. - Marquess

Boiled meat sounds bland and awful.

10 May 2020, 7:54 a.m. - Mary K

Boiled smoked/cured ham or gammon is far from awful and very far from bland. You really wouldn't want to tackle a joint of it uncooked and it's often too salty to eat roast. Simmer long and gently and you have a delicious dinner.

10 May 2020, 10:16 p.m. - Terry Foreman

Sounds like coungry ham Country ham is a variety of heavily salted ham preserved by curing and smoking, associated with the cuisine of the Southern United States.[1] Used as a method of preservation from before widespread refrigeration, country ham is packed in a mixture of salts, sugar, and spices and allowed to cure for a long period of time, sometimes months, and often smoked afterwards. It is extremely dry and salty, often too salty to be palatable on its own. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Country_ham

9 Jun 2020, 1:46 a.m. - San Diego Sarah

French bacon -- the confusion about what this means goes back to William the Conquer. For many ideas, see https://behind-the-french-menu.blogspot.com/2016/10/bacon-and-salted-pork-on-french-menus.html#:~:text=They%20made%20the%20word%20lard,(pronounced%20sane%2Ddoo).&text=Pork%20fat%2C%20lard%20in%20modern%20French. But this is just another example of how French-ified Charles II's Court had become. If you're interested in some notes I've collected on the subject, see https://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/322/#c549856

9 Jun 2020, 2:04 a.m. - JB

SDS - really enjoyed the "matrimonial dispute" in the link, thanks very much!

9 Jun 2020, 3:59 a.m. - San Diego Sarah

I thought it was pretty funny, JB.

9 Jun 2020, 6:45 a.m. - Louise Hudson

Robert Gertz: "So to the office, we all sat all the morning, and then home to dinner, where our dinner a ham of French bacon, boiled with pigeons, an excellent dish." Caught fresh outside, no doubt... Oh, well, with disaster a stone's throw away, might as well enjoy a good boiled pigeon. ——- It wasn't unusual to eat pigeons in Pepys’ time and up to the present day, though now they’re called squabs. Remember “Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie”? That was apparently good eats.

10 Jun 2020, 4:32 a.m. - Bryan

At the beginning of the diary at least, SP kept pigeons: 8 February 1659/60 "A little practice on my flageolet, and afterwards walking in my yard to see my stock of pigeons, which begin now with the spring to breed very fast." https://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1660/02/08/

10 Jun 2020, 7 p.m. - Terry Foreman

Searching for pigeon, in diary entries, ordered by relevancy. 15 found (1660-1668): https://www.pepysdiary.com/search/?q=pigeon