Friday 28 February 1667/68

Up, and to the office, where all the morning doing business, and after dinner with Sir W. Pen to White Hall, where we and the rest of us presented a great letter of the state of our want of money to his Royal Highness. I did also present a demand of mine for consideration for my travelling-charges of coach and boat-hire during the war, which, though his Royal Highness and the company did all like of, yet, contrary to my expectation, I find him so jealous now of doing any thing extraordinary, that he desired the gentlemen that they would consider it, and report their minds in it to him. This did unsettle my mind a great while, not expecting this stop: but, however, I shall do as well, I know, though it causes me a little stop. But that, that troubles me most is, that while we were thus together with the Duke of York, comes in Mr. Wren from the House, where, he tells us, another storm hath been all this day almost against the Officers of the Navy upon this complaint, — that though they have made good rules for payment of tickets, yet that they have not observed them themselves, which was driven so high as to have it urged that we should presently be put out of our places: and so they have at last ordered that we shall be heard at the bar of the House upon this business on Thursday next. This did mightily trouble me and us all; but me particularly, who am least able to bear these troubles, though I have the least cause to be concerned in it. Thence, therefore, to visit Sir H. Cholmly, who hath for some time been ill of a cold; and thence walked towards Westminster, and met Colonel Birch, who took me back to walk with him, and did give me an account of this day’s heat against the Navy Officers, and an account of his speech on our behalf, which was very good; and indeed we are much beholden to him, as I, after I parted with him, did find by my cozen Roger, whom I went to: and he and I to his lodgings. And there he did tell me the same over again; and how much Birch did stand up in our defence; and that he do see that there are many desirous to have us out of the Office; and the House is so furious and passionate, that he thinks nobody can be secure, let him deserve never so well. But now, he tells me, we shall have a fair hearing of the House, and he hopes justice of them: but, upon the whole, he do agree with me that I should hold my hand as to making any purchase of land, which I had formerly discoursed with him about, till we see a little further how matters go. He tells me that that made them so mad to-day first was, several letters in the House about the Fanatickes, in several places, coming in great bodies, and turning people out of the churches, and there preaching themselves, and pulling the surplice over the Parsons’ heads: this was confirmed from several places; which makes them stark mad, especially the hectors and bravadoes of the House, who shew all the zeal on this occasion. Having done with him, I home vexed in my mind, and so fit for no business, but sat talking with my wife and supped with her; and Nan Mercer come and sat all the evening with us, and much pretty discourse, which did a little ease me, and so to bed.


16 Annotations

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"...I find [HRH] so jealous now of doing any thing extraordinary..."

JEALOUS: fearful, suspicious, mistrustful. (L&M Select Glossary)

Brian  •  Link

"He tells me that that made them so mad to-day first was . . . " L&M have three that's (that that that.) While it looks strange, 3 that's vs. 2 makes more sense to my ear. Although if I were writing it today, "that that which" sounds better to me.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

I imagine Sam Pepys' quite honest traveling charges would make anyone charged to pass them blanch a little at the thought of Parliament investigating.

"Lord, we could fund the fleet on this." "No human being could've traveled so many places in a single day." "Three o'clock in the morning the man claims to have been on the river to inspect the fleet? No government official is up at three o'clock in the morning, especially with a wife like his." "Call the watermen and coachmen forth!" "Ask them if he spoke Latin during his trips!" "I have here in my hand proof that Samuel Pepys and fifty government employees are rosary-bead carrying members of the Papist Party."

Christopher Squire  •  Link

‘Stop n.
. . 2. In certain specific uses: A veto or prohibition (against); an embargo (upon goods, trade); a refusal to pass tokens; an order stopping payment of a bank note, cheque, or bill.
stop of the exchequer, the suspension of payment of the Government debt to the London goldsmiths in 1672.
1634    in J. Simon Ess. Irish Coins (1749) 115   Complaints‥concerning the stop and refusall of farthing tokens.
. . 1723    London Gaz. No. 6133/4,   A Stop is put against any Claim at the South-Sea-Office.’ [OED]

Australian Susan  •  Link

"...I home vexed in my mind, and so fit for no business, but sat talking with my wife and supped with her; and Nan Mercer come and sat all the evening with us, and much pretty discourse, which did a little ease me, and so to bed...."

Clever Bess. Loving Bess.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

And even cleverer Mary Mercer...Who can charm both Pepys, not a mean feat.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"I did also present a demand of mine for consideration for my travelling-charges of coach and boat-hire during the war,"

L&M: Pepys informed the Duke that he had kept 'a dayly accompt' of all expenses incurred through travel on official business 'in a book distinct from what ever like expenses he hath been at on his perticuler occasions', and had frequently spent 6s. 8d. per day

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"another storm hath been all this day almost against the Officers of the Navy upon this complaint, — that though they have made good rules for payment of tickets, yet that they have not observed them themselves, which was driven so high as to have it urged that we should presently be put out of our places: and so they have at last ordered that we shall be heard at the bar of the House upon this business on Thursday next."

L&M: CJ, IX. 58: reports of debates in Grey, i. 98; Milward, p. 201. The Board had established an order of priorities for payment -- first the dead, second the wounded and thereafter according to the length of service -- but were alleged to have observed it for only one week. For Pepys's speech in defence of the Board on 5 March, see https://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1668/03/05/

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"several letters in the House about the Fanatickes, in several places, coming in great bodies, and turning people out of the churches, and there preaching themselves, and pulling the surplice over the Parsons’ heads: this was confirmed from several places; which makes them stark mad, especially the hectors and bravadoes of the House, who shew all the zeal on this occasion."

L&M: CJ, IX. 58: reports of debates in Grey, i. 98; Milward, p. 201. One allegation (of riotous behaviour at Betley, Staffs.) was referred to a committee on 5 March and is denied by the biographer of Philip Henry, one of the nonconforming ministers involvewd: M. Henry, Account of...P. Henry (1712), pp. 90-81; cf. CJ, ix. 61.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"... several letters in the House about the Fanatickes, in several places, coming in great bodies, and turning people out of the churches, and there preaching themselves ..."

I found 4 reports on Fanatique activities during February 1668:

Feb. 3. 1688
STAFFORDSHIRE
Extract from a news-letter.

We in Staffordshire hear much of the Comprehensive Bill prepared by Charles II and Council, and would fain know the truth of it.
The hopes of the Presbyterians are so high, that one of them, a silenced minister, got into a church at Betley, and had 400 or 500 auditors, who came 8 or 9 miles;
he read no Common Prayer, only a chapter, and then up and preached. His sermon was fair and honest, but the action showed a great deal of confidence.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 234, No. 35.]
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Feb. 17. 1668
Yarmouth.
Rich. Bower to Williamson.
I find the House of Commons have resolved to put the Act of Uniformity into execution, and all laws for church discipline.
The nonconformists at Yarmouth make slight of it, and say it will be as unsuccessful as hitherto, which will be so if care is not taken in the selection of those to carry it out.
Those here who may be thought fit are such as have complied with all governments, and thereby enjoyed their liberties and estates, which chiefly induces them to comply; so that –– self-preservation being their chief aim –– they have carried, and will carry themselves so that they may save their stakes if a change should come.
Were 6 or 7 taken out of the court of aldermen, the rest are all such as, by their luke-warmness, have been little better than treacherous to their King and country, so that trust in such will but make way for greater mischief.

The two years they have had the government in their hands the nonconformists have been much strengthened.
Whereas in the time of Sir Thos. Meadowes and his party the meetings were by stealth, and if found out, prosecuted, now they go publicly, and no check is put upon any but those that inform.
I named some of the chief grandees of these parts lately, with the amount of their free contributions to a collection for the ejected ministers, both Presbyterians and Independents, by which it may be seen how fit these persons are to put in execution the Act of Uniformity; the neglect of it has not only made the law, as they say, unsuccessful, but emboldened the offenders to contemn and deride the law and law-givers.

I have often written of these two parties striving for the government, insomuch that I may be taken to have a great respect for one, and prejudice for the other;
but I have kindness and respect for both, although I have not changed ten words with either for 6 months, and have no self end, but only to serve my King and country.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 234, No. 193.]
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San Diego Sarah  •  Link

PART 2

Feb. 26. 1668
Yarmouth.
Rich. Bower to Williamson.

The Nonconformists are still very confident of having their liberty, and say there is a necessity for it, as the greatest charge upon the nation is defrayed by them, they being the major part, and the only men of estate, by whom the grand trade of the kingdom is chiefly managed.

They say that the gentry fined them the best tenants, others being generally poor, and that thus it appears how God prospers their ways.
Their number must have grown great when the government of Church and State lay under persecution so many years, and the friends of either must be very much impoverished, by banishment, captivity, sequestrations.
Their spoil and ruin has enriched the others, which they have much improved, having in our many years of trouble quietly enjoyed the grand trade of the nation, which they at present engross to themselves, if it be in other places as it is here.
The factions are numerous and wealthy, and deal with no one but those that lean towards them; so that he that will live by his trade must comply, and not speak or act against them.

It is difficult to find persons fit to execute any laws that shall be made to bring them to conformity;

30 sail have gone out for Rochelle, Bordeaux, and the Straits.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 235, No. 86.]
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Feb. 29. 1668
Coventry.
R. Hope to Williamson.

There was only one fellow tried and burnt in the hand at the assizes for cow stealing.
Knows not whether the people are more inclined to peace, or want money to go to law, but there was not one nisi prius case at Coventry.
At Warwick there were few trials; 6 were burnt in the hand, but not any suffered.
Account of the murder of a maid-servant by one Addis, who is distracted, a lusty young fellow, his father a man of great estate; he was seized and carried to Warwick Gaol, where he was acquitted as a lunatic, and ordered to be sent to Bedlam.

There is much discourse of a strange well at Oundle in Northamptonshire, in the yard of one Dabbs, wherein a kind of drumming, in manner of a march, has been heard; it is said to be very ominous, having been heard heretofore, and always precedes some great accident.

I wrote to the town for an account of it, and was informed of the truth of it, and that it beat for a fortnight the latter end of last month, and the beginning of this, and was heard in the very same manner before the [late] King's death, the death of Cromwell, the King's coming in, and the Fire of London.

We have frequent meetings here without much control and our sectaries talk exceeding high of indulgence.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 235, No. 126.]
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'Charles II: February 1668', in Calendar of State Papers Domestic: Charles II, 1667-8, ed. Mary Anne Everett Green (London, 1893), pp. 204-261. British History Online
http://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers…

Stephane Chenard  •  Link

A quick word search in the State Papers, in the html version (at https://www.british-history.ac.uk/search/series/c…) which allows such sport, reveals that the evil of Nonconformity, or at least the perception of it by the writers whose letters are at our disposall, indeed seems to be encreasing lately in a most concerning manner. Counting occurrences of words starting in "fanat-" (e.g. fanatique, fanatick) or in "noncon-", we find on a monthly basis from July 1667 through Feb. 1668: 2 - 3 - 4 - 3 - 1 - 1 - 2 (this in January) - 6 (this in February, and all in separate documents). It's not extremely robust statistics but it does suggest a recent uptick in fanaticks.

Two of the ticks are in an undated and unsigned letter, filed (at https://play.google.com/books/reader?id=gCk5AQAAM…) under "Feb[ruary]?" and tentatively attributed to "Viscount Conway". The author supplies a field guide to the Court to his in-law, ahead of his coming there. He doesn't much like the scene, and asserts that "the Duke of Buckingham (...) heads the fanatics"; he also makes "the king compl[y] with him out of fear", and "thinks to arrive to be another Oliver, and the fanatics expect a day of redemption under him".

The editors of the State Papers think it "a curious letter". Is it useful decoding of what the word "fanatique" may have also (or really) meant in political terms? The viscount is on the Irish Privy Council, a F.R.S. and rather on the ascent (see his rise at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Conway,_1st_…), so the letter could reflect the opinion of others at Court, rather than just his personal fancy. "I have here in my hand the proof that..." indeed.

Stephane Chenard  •  Link

And today Sam also got a note from Coventry (State Paper No. 108), adding to the heap that "the Committee on miscarriages intend to send for the commissioners and victualler on Monday, to inquire into the want of victuals complained of by Prince Rupert. Pray prepare for both". Oh joy, now they'll get into all the rotten biscuits and undrinkable beer.

A couple of other documents in today's mailbag further document the chaos. A Mr. Fownes (in No. 134) asks the Commissioners for an additional clerk to manage the books, and for leave to pay him more than "labourer's pay", so he's able to do more than file receipts. Sam's colleague Edw. Gregory, Clerk of the Cheque, notes (in No. 135) that the lax security on ships is an invitation to thievery; it is so rife that "a fellow from the Defiance", found "leaving the yard with a new coil of rope in a biscuit bag", pleaded, as his defence, that he had "helped to the discovery of more ropes and other goods purloined".

Gerald Berg  •  Link

"especially the hectors and bravadoes of the House..."

It this a description or a turn of phrase?

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