Sunday 29 December 1667

(Lord’s day). Up, and at my chamber all the day, both morning and afternoon (only a little at dinner with my wife alone), upon the settling of my Tangier accounts towards the evening of all reckonings now against the new year, and here I do see the great folly of letting things go long unevened, it being very hard for me and dangerous to state after things are gone out of memory, and much more would be so should I have died in this time and my accounts come to other hands, to understand which would never be. At night comes Mrs. Turner to see us; and there, among other talk, she tells me that Mr. William Pen, who is lately come over from Ireland, is a Quaker again, or some very melancholy thing; that he cares for no company, nor comes into any which is a pleasant thing, after his being abroad so long, and his father such a hypocritical rogue, and at this time an Atheist. She gone, I to my very great content do find my accounts to come very even and naturally, and so to supper and to bed.


20 Annotations

Maurie Beck  •  Link

Mr. William Pen, who is lately come over from Ireland, is a Quaker again, or some very melancholy thing; that he cares for no company, nor comes into any which is a pleasant thing, after his being abroad so long, and his father such a hypocritical rogue, and at this time an Atheist.

The first modern atheist who wrote about it was Hobbes in 1651 (Leviathan). Of course, atheism was an epithet that was flung at many who might have divergent religious beliefs. Being a Quaker or an atheist was equally detrimental to one's health.

Mister Max  •  Link

Just 4 years later the King gave a section of America as large as
England to the younger, Quaker William Penn. He sold a large section to various Welsh Quakers, most of whom moved here. And 300 years later, so have I.
It's nice to see his first mention!

Mister Max  •  Link

Just 14 (not 4) years later the King gave a section of America as large as
England to the younger, Quaker William Penn. He sold a large section to various Welsh Quakers, most of whom moved here. And 300 years later, so have I.
It's nice to see his first mention!

Paul Chapin  •  Link

Not his first mention, Mister Max, that occurred on April 22, 1661 (see http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/2514/#refe… for a full list of diary references to him). But this one is particularly fun, since it's the first to characterize him as the person he famously became ("a Quaker, or some very melancholy thing").

Robert Gertz  •  Link

When we last we met Will Jr. he was dangerously Frenchifing if I remember. But it's the late 60's and all kinds of "movements" have come in to disturb the fabric social. Seriously it's rather fun to hear Sam's current take on Quakers as "some very melancholy thing"...Sounds like some of the sting has gone out of being one and they've become a bit out of fashion.

I wonder how Sam knows Penn Sr.'s an atheist? Sir Will up and pronounce it one bright morning's carriage ride?

"When a man has seen what I have seen at sea, Pepys..."

"Indeed, Sir Will..."

"...Not that I expect a man who has not been at sea as I have been to understand..."

"Right, Sir Will..."

"One finds oneself forced to come to terms with all that is base in human nature."

"I imagine so, Sir Will..."

"When Death stares one in the face, in battle, Pepys...As it did that fateful day on Jamaica..."

"Right...Sir Will..."

"...One realizes that there may well be no Divine Presence intervening in the affairs of bloody mankind..."

"Really, Sir Will?" Lord, all I wanted was a ride to Whitehall...

"...And one is forced to the conclusion that appeals to Providence may be of no use whatsoever, Pepys."

"I see, Sir Will...Yet, one could argue..."

"Of course, in these times, one must be circumspect as to one's own beliefs, Pepys."

"Aye, indeed, Sir Will..."

"Yet, I am not afraid to speak my mind...And to say before all the world...That doubt has crossed it..."

"Well, one could argue there's nothing lost in attempting to believe, Sir Will. Tis' great comfort to some..."

"Mere cowardice, Pepys...The craven attitude of small men...Not mine. Within proper circumspection of course, Pepys."

"Unlike young Will, eh, Sir Will?"

"Drat the lad..." grimly... "Of all things to proclaim oneself..."

"One must admire his courage in taking such a position, Sir Will."

"Nonsense, Pepys. He would be a Shaker...Quaker, whatever, yes...Well, let him. But let him be circumspect and cautious for the sake of family and friends."

"Admirably put, Admiral Sir Will."

"King does like the fellows, don't he?"

"At present they amuse him, so I'm told."

"Hmmn...Well, could be worse."

"Of course, Sir Will. He could be a less than circumspect Atheist."

cum salis grano  •  Link

Being an Atheist and being called one is not the same.
Being called one is often just a put down on his version of belief in the unknown.
Especially when used on all those that were known dissidents , like Bunyan and Tm. Vincent and the other 2000 preachers roaming the streets ejected from their livings for not adhering to the official party line.

Australian Susan  •  Link

Anachronism alert!!

Shakers were 18th century, RG - but you surely know this. WP would not have done.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ann_Lee

Recently, on our national classical music programme (ABC Classic FM), one of the presenters assumed Shaker and Quaker were synonyms. AAAAAAAARRRGGGGH! Makes me despair of this country sometimes.

Sorry, off-topic whinge.

cum salis grano  •  Link

Quakers and and Shakers
OED has quite a few early references,
One For
1648 Scottish Mist Dispel'd 17 If the Lord in mercy doe not afford us more liberty..in things Civill and Religious,..we may be quickly reckoned amongst the new Sect of Shakers: you would make us tremble under your hands.
1654 E. PAGITT Heresiogr. (ed. 5) 136 The Shaker or Quaker.
another
1651 T. HALL Pulpit Guarded 15 We have many Sects now abroad; Ranters, Seekers, Shakers, Quakers, and now Creepers.

Margaret  •  Link

The last time I remember reading about young William Penn, he was a teenager breaking into the Pepys' bedroom on the morning of Valentine's Day, so that he'd be the first man that Elizabeth saw that day--that would make him her Valentine.
Looks like he's changed a lot in such a short time!

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"I mean after all, Pepys...The boy might have been a Ranter...Or at least a Creeper. Now there's a circumspect lot."

"Point there, Admirsl Sir Will..."

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"I might have even dared hope..."

"A Ranting Fanatic Quaking Creeper, Admiral Sir Will?"

"Only a dream but...Naturally a circumspect one, Pepys."

"Naturally, Admiral Sir Will..."

(Thanks CSG.)

Paul Chapin  •  Link

One further note about the American land grant to William Penn the younger. It was not given out of personal admiration, or as a gesture of support to Quakers, but to settle a debt. Per Wikipedia (under "Pennsylvania"):

On February 28, 1681, Charles II granted a land charter to William Penn to repay a debt of £16,000 (around £2,100,000 in 2008, adjusting for retail inflation) owed to William's father, Admiral Penn. This was one of the largest land grants to an individual in history. It was called Pennsylvania, meaning "Penn's Woods", in honor of Admiral Penn. William Penn, who had wanted his province to be named "Sylvania", was embarrassed at the change, fearing that people would think he had named it after himself, but King Charles would not rename the grant. Penn established a government with two innovations that were much copied in the New World: the county commission and freedom of religious conviction.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

" Mrs. Turner...tells me that Mr. William Pen, who is lately come over from Ireland, is a Quaker again, or some very melancholy thing,"

In co. Cork, Ireland at his father's estate for a year and a half, Penn renewed his contact with Thomas Loe, the Quaker from Cork who had first interested him in Quakerisn as a boy of 13. It was because of his imprisonment for conventicling in November that his father not recalled him home. He had been sent down from Oxford for nonconformity in 1661. Possibly Pepys now thought that his tour abroared, from which he had returned something of a Frenchified dandy, had cured him of his melancholy enthusuasms. (L&M)

Terry Foreman  •  Link

As Paul Chapin posted: "One further note about the American land grant to William Penn the younger. It was not given out of personal admiration, or as a gesture of support to Quakers, but to settle a debt. Per Wikipedia (under "Pennsylvania"):" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pennsylvania#17th_c…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"I do see the great folly of letting things go long unevened, it being very hard for me and dangerous to state after things are gone out of memory, and much more would be so should I have died in this time and my accounts come to other hands, to understand which would never be."

Indeed, Samuel Pepys, Esq.! We sympathize, but have the advantage of electronic digital software programs that automatically track , update and help us balance such "unevenings"! (I thank God for Quicken in my case!)

Pepys's plaint were spot on for our condition, so unused are we to working it out manually, if left to it again.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"(Lord’s day). Up, and at my chamber all the day, both morning and afternoon (only a little at dinner with my wife alone), upon the settling of my Tangier accounts "

L&M: For an abstract of these accounts (covering 4 November 1664-30 December 1667, declared in the Exchequer 1 April 1675), see Routh, pp. 366-7. Pepys mentioned his delay in making them up at 26 November and 19 December 1667. He has a summary of them in Rawl. A 185, f. 23r.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"... the settling of my Tangier accounts towards the evening of all reckonings now against the new year, ..."

How confusing it must have been to have two New Years every year ... and a different calendar from Europe. Were England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland the only countries caught in this silly time warp for a couple of centuries -- just because they didn't want a long-dead Pope to be right?

If it were me, I'd be cleaning up the books because of all the Parliamentary Committees and investigations, and not wanting to get caught with my trousers down, so to speak. But that's me.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

“Perfect numbers like perfect men are very rare." -- Rene Descartes (1596-1650)

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

[The record is unclear on this story. If William Penn Jr. was arrested in September 1667, and was in the Tower until at least April 1668 (seven and a half months), how we was able to run in and out of Mr. Darby’s printshop delivering his manuscript and making changes in late 1667 and/or early 1668 doesn’t make sense. Nevertheless, this is probably when Penn penned “No Cross, No Crown”. Or it may have been next year … but that still doesn’t answer how he made so many visits to his printer. Maybe the 1667/68 confusion comes into play?]

“In September 1667 William Penn Jr. was arrested for the first time, at a meeting of Friends. The mayor, noticing his aristocratic dress, offered to free him on his promise to behave; but the 23-year-old refused and was sent to prison with 18 others. Penn wrote that religion was his crime and made him a prisoner to a mayor's malice, but at the same time it made him a free man.”

https://www.quakersintheworld.org/quakers-in-acti…

‘In 1667 he spent seven and a half months in prison in the Tower, and while there he wrote the first version of what would be one of his best works, "No Cross, No Crown".’

https://tehistory.org/hqda/html/v19/v19n4p103.htm…

Jan. ? 1668
Petition of Joan, wife of John Darby, prisoner in the Gatehouse, to Lord Arlington,
for admission to her husband, to minister to his affliction;
can only say in his defense that he was not acquainted with the pernicious things in the book he printed, the copy being brought him by piecemeal, and the author, William Penn, sometimes dictating to the compositor as he set the letters.

[S.P. Dom., Car. II 233, No. 140.]
https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-paper…

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Maybe there was a Christmas release of Quakers that included William Penn?

Jan. 1668
Note that the Quakers are now triumphant that their beloved friends are set at liberty, and begin to brave it more than before,
and none are comparable to them for horses and fine clothes.
The common people murmur very sore that they should be set at liberty, and there wants not some to set abroad that toleration is at hand.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II 233, No. 159.]

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