Friday 30 October 1668

Up betimes; and Mr. Povy comes to even accounts with me, which we did, and then fell to other talk. He tells, in short, how the King is made a child of, by Buckingham and Arlington, to the lessening of the Duke of York, whom they cannot suffer to be great, for fear of my Lord Chancellor’s return, which, therefore, they make the King violent against. That he believes it is impossible these two great men can hold together long: or, at least, that the ambition of the former is so great, that he will endeavour to master all, and bring into play as many as he can. That Anglesey will not lose his place easily, but will contend in law with whoever comes to execute it. That the Duke of York, in all things but in his cod-piece, is led by the nose by his wife. That W. Coventry is now, by the Duke of York, made friends with the Duchess; and that he is often there, and waits on her. That he do believe that these present great men will break in time, and that W. Coventry will be a great man again; for he do labour to have nothing to do in matters of the State, and is so usefull to the side that he is on, that he will stand, though at present he is quite out of play. That my Lady Castlemayne hates the Duke of Buckingham. That the Duke of York hath expressed himself very kind to my Lord Sandwich, which I am mighty glad of. That we are to expect more changes if these men stand. This done, he and I to talk of my coach, and I got him to go see it, where he finds most infinite fault with it, both as to being out of fashion and heavy, with so good reason that I am mightily glad of his having corrected me in it; and so I do resolve to have one of his build, and with his advice, both in coach and horses, he being the fittest man in the world for it, and so he carried me home, and said the same to my wife. So I to the office and he away, and at noon I home to dinner, and all the afternoon late with Gibson at my chamber about my present great business, only a little in the afternoon at the office about Sir D. Gawden’s accounts, and so to bed and slept heartily, my wife and I at good peace, but my heart troubled and her mind not at ease, I perceive, she against and I for the girle, to whom I have not said anything these three days, but resolve to be mighty strange in appearance to her.

This night W. Batelier come and took his leave of us, he setting out for France to-morrow.

12 Annotations

Robert Gertz  •  Link

Coach via Thomas Povy, the 17th Century's arbiter of elegance...Now if Sam would just cough up a few of those Tangier profits in gratitude.

"But Pepys, the Treasurer's position always yielded me a comfortable profit..."

"Well, Povy...I'd not bring that up at the next Committee meeting lest unfortunate questions be asked. Truly, I weep for us both, Thomas. But many thanks on the coach advice..."


Terry Foreman  •  Link

"W. Batelier come and took his leave of us, he setting out for France to-morrow."

He was a wine merchant in the Bordeaux trade. (L&M note)

Mary  •  Link


George Villiers and Barbara Villiers are ambitiouus cousins (though not, I think, first cousins).

Mary  •  Link

Buying a coach.

Doesn't this just make you think of two modern men discussing which make and model of car one of them should buy? There always seems to be one friend who 'really knows what he's talking about' and is only too ready to point out the disadvantages attached to the model first proposed.

languagehat  •  Link

"He tells, in short, how the King is made a child of, by Buckingham"

I've been reading Catherine Drinker Bowen's (wonderful) The Lion and the Throne: The Life and Times of Sir Edward Coke, in which Buckingham's father, the first Duke, also named George Villiers, plays an equally prominent and destructive role. A cursed family!

jeannine  •  Link

I adore theses posts-the alliances are always shuffling about, the back stabbing ongoing, etc. I actually think that although Sam's peers think that Charles is a fool, that maybe this is how he likes to run his kingdom---keeping everyone ill at ease, suspicious of each other and toiling around as on and off friends and foes. If parties are played against each other then Charles stands a better chance of not letting any real alliances form against him. I can't help but wonder if he doesn't drop litte comments, etc. to charge up the insecurities of the troops!

Glyn  •  Link

Someone once told me that in terms of expense, Pepys buying a coach wasn't the same as buying a used automobile, but more like buying a used helicopter.

And of course, he'll need to hire at least one person to drive it.

Mary  •  Link

The expense of a coach.

He's also going to need a coach-house (rent and/or upkeep to be found) and either a horse and stabling (with someone to look after both) or a reliable source of horses kept at livery for hire. Farrier's bills, horse-doctor's bills, bills for fodder. Add the cost of coach-maintenance and occasional bills from the harness-maker and it could all add up nicely.

Kevin Peter  •  Link

I'm assuming that the coachmaker hasn't yet started on Sam's coach at this point, and that Sam is showing Povy a coach just like the one he ordered. Changing the design in the middle of construction can get very costly.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"Mr. Povy comes to even accounts with me, which we did, and then fell to other talk"

L&M note Thomas Povey knew the Duke of York's household well, having been the Duke's comptroller until 1666.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

'Entry Book: October 1668', in Calendar of Treasury Books, Volume 2, 1667-1668, ed. William A Shaw (London, 1905), pp. 623-630. British History Online…

Oct. 30 1668
Same for 41,560/. 4s. 5d.
to Sir Robert Vyner, King's goldsmith,
for jewels and plate, &c., detailed.
Treasury Miscellanea Warrants Early XXXIV. pp. 238–9.

Oct. 30 1668
Treasury warrant to the Customs Farmers
for 30 tuns of wine, duty free,
to the French Ambassador.
Treasury Outletters Miscellaneous I. p. 135.

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