Sunday 13 September 1668

(Lord’s day). The like all this morning and afternoon, and finished it to my mind. So about four o’clock walked to the Temple, and there by coach to St. James’s, and met, to my wish, the Duke of York and Mr. Wren; and understand the Duke of York hath received answers from Brouncker, W. Pen, and J. Minnes; and as soon as he saw me, he bid Mr. Wren read them over with me. So having no opportunity of talk with the Duke of York, and Mr. Wren some business to do, he put them into my hands like an idle companion, to take home with me before himself had read them, which do give me great opportunity of altering my answer, if there was cause. So took a hackney and home, and after supper made my wife to read them all over, wherein she is mighty useful to me; and I find them all evasions, and in many things false, and in few, to the full purpose. Little said reflective on me, though W. Pen and J. Minnes do mean me in one or two places, and J. Minnes a little more plainly would lead the Duke of York to question the exactness of my keeping my records; but all to no purpose. My mind is mightily pleased by this, if I can but get time to have a copy taken of them, for my future use; but I must return them tomorrow. So to bed.


22 Annotations

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"finished [my reply to the 'great letter'] to my mind. ...and understand the Duke of York hath received answers from Brouncker, W. Pen, and J. Minnes"

L&M note copies of Pepys's reply (13 September) and those of the others are ( in Gibson's hand) in the Pepysian Library. The original of Mennes's elaborate reply is in James R. Tanner, *Mr. Pepys* (1925)(44ff.). Mennes and his colleagues plead they were following the custom of their predecessors. and the circumstances of the war, the Plague and the Fire.

Paul Chapin  •  Link

"if I can but get time to have a copy taken of them, for my future use"
Makes me want to send a Xerox machine back through time for Sam to use. Marvelous times we're living in.

Paul Chapin  •  Link

I intended to add, for all the similarities we note between then and now, there's also a lot that's very different.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

“if I can but get time to have a copy taken of them, for my future use”

Pepys's copy machine was apparently a Gibson.

Mary  •  Link

"he put them into my hands"

Proof for Sam, if proof were needed, that James really does mean to back his position in this whole matter.

Robert Gertz  •  Link

"J. Minnes a little more plainly would lead the Duke of York to question the exactness of my keeping my records..."

Sir John apparently not as out of it in the office as Sam and co would lead us to believe, at least in the fine art of self defense.

Stan Oram  •  Link

Ref Paul Chapin's 'Marvelous times we’re living in'. Only this morning as I cleaned a stainless steel cook's knife I had used, I wondered what stone age man would have made of it. It occured to me that we have not by any means reached the limit of man's development so I wonder what will replace a cook's knife in the future!

JWB  •  Link

Less than honorable behavior by Duke of York.

Mary  •  Link

Politics and honour don't necessarily go together.

JWB  •  Link

No, but they do go well together. Reminded of the honorable Sec. of State Henry Stimson's 1929 remark that "gentlemen do not read other peoples mail".

Todd Bernhardt  •  Link

Yet, as Mary has pointed out, James has already clearly made up his mind, and for him, Sam's the Man.

One more reason why Sam showed so much loyalty to him later, I think.

Ivan  •  Link

L & M reads, "if I can but get them to have a copy taken of them for my future use" which leaves one wondering who the first "them" refers to. His clerks? Wheatley has the word "time" in place of the first "them" which seems to clarify the meaning as the original letters must be returned the next day, but may not be an accurate reading of Pepy's text, of course.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

The volume covering correspondence from November 1667 through September 1668 is at
https://play.google.com/books/reader?id=gCk5AQAAM…

PAGES 630-631

Sept. 13. 1668
Portsmouth
Hugh Salesbury to Williamson.

His Majesty went hence for London yesterday morning between 6 and 7 o'clock, having been in continual action on Thursday and Friday, observing the new fortifications, and giving orders to Sir Bernard de Gomme about them;
also viewing his ships afloat, and those building.

He seemed to have much content in all things;
he was received with all demonstrations of affection by the Corporation, who waited on him with the usual formalities;
a little without the garrison works, the mayor delivered to him his mace, which was returned, and carried before him by the mayor to his court;
the ordnance was fired, and the garrison soldiers in arms received him at the gate, and guarded both sides the street to his court;
his Royal Highness, as Governor, delivered the keys to his Majesty on his knee, which were also returned.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 246, No. 35.]
---
This letter says His Royal Highness (James) was with Charles II in Portsmouth last Thursday and Friday, and the brothers, probably together, left early on Saturday morning. Riding straight through, they got back to Whitehall on Saturday night ... James might have read all his mail on Sunday?

The mayor is, of course, our frequent correspondent from Portsmouth, Hugh Salesbury.

L&M: In 1661 Sir Godfrey Lloyd and Sir Bernard de Gomme were made joint engineers-in-chief of all royal castles and fortifications in England and Wales.

9 August. 1665 -- A Royal Commission was granted to the Portsmouth Governor and other Principle Officers to purchase land around Portsmouth and the Dockyard to build fortification, these were set out to the plans of Sir Bernard de Gomme.
1668 -- New defences designed by Bernard de Gomme commenced. Dutch prisoners of war provided much of the labor. (Map showing de Gomme's design is in British Museum)
http://portsmouthdockyard.org.uk/Dockyard%20Chron…
---
I SUSPECT 1668 IS THE WRONG DATE; PRISONER-OF-WAR EXCHANGES WERE FINISHED BY NOW ... IT PROBABLY WOULD BE MORE ACCURATE TO SAY THE NEW DEFENCES WERE FINISHED IN 1668, NOT COMMENCED.

.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"So having no opportunity of talk with the Duke of York, and Mr. Wren some business to do, he put them into my hands like an idle companion, to take home with me before himself had read them, which do give me great opportunity of altering my answer, if there was cause."

I disagree with JWB ... it was Matthew Wren who put the docs in Pepys' hands. And I think Pepys is entitled to rebut the statements of Brouncker, Mennes and Penn, just as they are entitled to rebut his accusations.
Since they were in Oxford with Charles II for much of the War, with only Pepys in the office, they do have a point. And we know Pepys was drunk for a lot of the plague times ...
I hope Pepys hasn't hung himself on his own petard.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Lots of mail today, concerning everything from Robert Francis' bad handwriting, a pearl purchased for Quen Catherine, and how Louis XIV dealt with rich people running from the plague. Some highlights:

The volume covering correspondence from November 1667 through September 1668 is at
https://play.google.com/books/reader?id=gCk5AQAAM…
PAGES 632-633

Sept. 14. 1668
Whitehall
Duke of Richmond and Lenox to Sam. Pepys.

Desires to know what men are allowed to his yacht.
His Royal Highness has appointed the captain.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 246, No. 40.]

@@@
Sept. 14. 1668
Victualling Office
Sir Denis Gauden to the Navy Commissioners.

Desires that his Victualling extra demands relating to the victualling of the Navy during the late war may have despatch.

Sends an account of his disbursements to provide money to carry on the service, that the Treasury Commissioners, to whom the matter is referred by Council, may be informed,
and that he may be freed from the growing charge he is at, of 1,350/. per month, by reason of moneys due to him from his Majesty, besides other moneys due to him.

Asks their resolve about the remains of victuals provided upon the declaration of December 1666, accounts of which he has often presented;
is out of a very considerable sum of money for that service.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 246, No. 41.]

Encloses,
Account of moneys unpaid for which orders are passed to the
victualler of the Navy, amounting to 176,725/. 6s. 5d., with interest at 6 per cent., 1,354/. 14s. 8d.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 246, No. 411.]

@@@
Sept. 14. 1668
Pass for the French Ambassador's goods, as they shall from time to time arrive.
Minute. [S.P. Dom., Entry Book 30, f. 806.]

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Sept. 14. 1668
Warrant to the Treasury Commissioners
to order the officers of Windsor Forest to fell and deliver 8 timber trees to Prince Rupert,
for repairing Cranbourne Lodge, within the said forest.
[S.P. Dom., Entry Book 30, f. 806.]
---
You'll remember Pepys visit to Chancellor Hyde at Cranbourne Lodge, when he was in the middle of renovations. With his departure, Prince Rupert has moved in. https://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/8761/#c54…

@@@
Sept. 14. 1668
Warrant
to pay 322/. 15s. to Isaac Le Gouce, for a pearl furnished for the Queen,
value 300/., and for the charges of receiving the said sum in the respective offices. [S.P. Dom., Entry Book 30, f. 81.]

@@@
Sept. 14. 1668
John Pocock to Hickes.
Weymouth

A vessel from Cherburg reports that the sickness in Rochelle increases;
that it is got into Dieppe,
and that the gentry in Rouen forsook the city, but were ordered by the French King to return upon pain of forfeiting all their estaies to the use of the poor, and being sent to Paris and there imprisoned, upon which they all again returned;

also that the King [LOUIS XIV] has sent 40,000/. for the use of the poor, and that a strict watch is kept at every gate so that no person leaves the city.

A ship from St. Malo reports that they are there very apprehensive of the sickness in Normandy, and use their utmost endeavours to keep out all manner of persons and goods that come from the infected places;

that 2 great ships of 40 or 50 guns each are ready to be launched at St. Malo,
and that a great vessel has been cast away between St. Ambrose and the Meecoes.

The Mary and Elizabeth ketch of London has put in to stop a leak.
[S.P. Dom., Car. II. 246, No. 50.]

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Darn ... did it again ... my last two posts belong in tomorrow!

LKvM  •  Link

JWB on 14 Sep 2011:
"Less than honorable behavior by Duke of York."
Mary on 14 Sep 2011:
"Politics and honour don't necessarily go together."
Me: They hardly ever do.

James the DoY obviously trusts and relies on Sam completely. In view of the fact that Sam sees this handover of material mainly as a way to protect himself, James is an innocent.

Tonyel  •  Link

"L & M reads, "if I can but get them to have a copy taken of them for my future use" which leaves one wondering who the first "them" refers to. His clerks?"
Surely, Sam's problem is finding someone he can trust to keep a dangerous secret and who can also write in a fair hand?
His clerks are out of the question and Bess might fail the handwriting test.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"Since they were in Oxford with Charles II for much of the War, ..."

I mis-spoke ... should be they were in Oxford during the plague, not the war.

john  •  Link

"and after supper made my wife to read them all over,"

I infer from this that Elizabeth is quite aware of what is happening at the Office.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Agreed, John. Pepys is playing a difficult hand; he and James may "win", or they may go down with the rest of the Navy Board. The number of tweeks and rewrites to Pepys' response to the Duke of York's letter and his colleagues answers tells you how careful Sam was being with the words, innuendo and facts.

But three weeks ago Pepys swrote: "Writing to my father to-night not to unfurnish our house in the country for my sister, who is going to her own house, because I think I may have occasion myself to come thither; and so I do, by our being put out of the Office, which do not at all trouble me to think of."
https://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1668/08/29/

To leave Elizabeth in the dark about this troublesome situation and its possible outcomes would not be fair. Plus she might say something inadvertently to Lady Penn or one of the servants if she didn't understand the stakes.

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