Thursday 26 November 1668

Up, and at the Office all the morning, where I was to have delivered the Duke of York’s letter of advice to the Board, in answer to our several answers to his great letter; but Lord Brouncker not being there, and doubtful to deliver it before the new Treasurers, I forbore it to next sitting. So home at noon to dinner, where I find Mr. Pierce and his wife but I was forced to shew very little pleasure in her being there because of my vow to my wife; and therefore was glad of a very bad occasion for my being really troubled, which is, at W. Hewer’s losing of a tally of 1000l., which I sent him this day to receive of the Commissioners of Excise. So that though I hope at the worst I shall be able to get another, yet I made use of this to get away as soon as I had dined, and therefore out with him to the Excise Office to make a stop of its payment, and so away to the coachmaker’s and several other places, and so away home, and there to my business at the office, and thence home, and there my wife to read to me, and W. Hewer to set some matters of accounts right at my chamber, to bed.


9 Annotations

Terry Foreman  •  Link

The Royal Society today at Arundel House — from the Hooke Folio Online

Nou. 26. Mr. [John] Lock[e] [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Locke ] admitted.

The Expt. Deuised & made this Day by the Curator, was the impelling of wooden balls both against springy & not Springy bodys, wherby he did intend to evince that the Reflectio of Bodys Depends vpon the springnesse of bodys. soe that where there is noe spring there can be noe Reflection. But the expt. mode being not Satisfactory to the Company for the purpose Declared, the Curator proposd another to be made at the next meeting vizt. with a mettaline String made more or Lesse tense to see what the Return or Reflex of it will be, according to its seuerall degrees of tension. Dr Croon suggested tht it might be considerd whether the businesse of motion might not be made out without taking in the notion of springynesse of Bodys.

Mr. Old: produced a paper of Dr. Wallis written by him Nou. 15. 1668. in Oxford concerning the Generall Laws of motion. it was orderd to be registred with thanks to the author -- [ http://www.archive.org/details/philtrans01712567 ]

about Examining testicles. - -

it was also agreed vpon that on Saturday next at mr Hookes Lodging in Gresham colledge the Persons of the Comtee for anatomicall Expts. would meet to make a Cut in the kidney of a Dog to see if it would heal vp again.

Colpresse Letter about Red & Opall glasse. -

http://webapps.qmul.ac.uk/cell/Hooke/hooke_folio.…

Terry Foreman  •  Link

"the Curator [ Mr. Hooke ] proposd another to be made at the next meeting vizt. with a mettaline String made more or Lesse tense to see what the Return or Reflex of it will be, according to its seuerall degrees of tension. Dr Croon suggested tht it might be considerd whether the businesse of motion might not be made out without taking in the notion of springynesse of Bodys. "

There seems to be a backlash against Hooke's concern with "springynesse."

Chris Squire  •  Link

‘tally, n.1 Etym: . . Latin tālea , cutting, rod, stick . .
. . 1.b. Such a cloven rod, as the official receipt formerly given by the Exchequer for a tax, tallage, etc. paid, or in acknowledgement of a loan to the sovereign.
. . 1697 J. Pollexfen Disc. Trade & Coyn 70 When any Tax or Imposition is granted by Parliament, Tallies, Exchequer Notes or Bills, issued out upon the same, for the supplying of the Government with Ready Money till the Duties be paid.’ [OED]

It was in modern terms a post-dated cheque on the Government, made out to Cash, so anyone who found it in the street could take it to the Exchequer and turn it into gold.

GrahamT  •  Link

Re: There seems to be a backlash against Hooke’s concern with “springynesse.”

Luckily the 'springyness' deniers were defeated and we have Hooke's law and not Croon's.

languagehat  •  Link

"a very bad occasion for my being really troubled, which is, at W. Hewer’s losing of a tally of 1000l., which I sent him this day to receive of the Commissioners of Excise."

Man, that could have been a very serious problem indeed. It's an impressive tribute to their friendship that it survived this potentially disastrous blunder.

RSGII  •  Link

Re tally of 1000l, see tally sticks in the encyclopedia under Money and Business, Financial Transactions. It was an ancient method of government money using matched half’s of notched sticks. The notches indicated the amount, the matching to the half held by the Treasury proved it was genuine.

Sam Ursu  •  Link

Those tally sticks were probably the craziest monetary system ever devised. Literally every other form of money, including coins, cuneiform tablets, jade, beads, and cowry shells, were made out of durable materials while the tally sticks were made from willow wood and about as long as an adult's finger. Furthermore, the tally sticks were notched and notated before being split in half.

As such, they were subject to being destroyed or rendered useless by fire, dampness (rot), or simply rough handling. Charles Dickens himself wrote a rather hilarious piece about the tally sticks.

Whether bad luck or just karma, the last act of the tally sticks (after being in use for CENTURIES) was burning down the medieval palace of Winchester (which became the Parliament, and still is, today) when one of the Lords decided to burn the "two cartloads" of superfluous sticks in-house "instead of distributing them as firewood" to MPs. Since the fireplaces in Parliament were designed for burning coal, not wood, the flues caught on fire and bye-bye, Winchester.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burning_of_Parliame…

Bryan  •  Link

Tally Sticks
Describing tally sticks as an inefficient form of money is not quite correct.
Tally sticks in England had two main uses.
The type involved in the destruction of the Palace of Westminster were a form of receipt. For example, proof that a tax payment had been made.
The Navy Office was using tallies in a different way, as a type of promissory note or IOU. As SP often notes the government was short of cash but still had to provision the navy. The tally stick was a debt instrument.
The Exchequer issued a tally for 1000 pounds. It was a promise to pay the bearer that amount some time in the future, say in one year. The navy could then purchase goods, probably for less than the face value, say 950 pounds. The difference being interest on the debt. This form of tally was a negotiable instrument, it could be traded before redemption.

Inefficient? Tally sticks were used for over 600 years so people at the time found them useful.
The fact that they were made of wood was one reason that they were efficient.
A standard method of notching the sticks meant that exact amounts, down to the penny, could be recorded easily. Once the amount was recorded, the the stick was split along the grain. Each part of the tally then had an irregular edge that fitted its mate perfectly. The two sides had to match before payment was made. This meant that wooden tallies were both tamper-proof and counterfeit-proof.

This last feature is the reason that SP was not overly worried about Hewer's lost tally. He could go to the Exchequer and have it cancelled, like cancelling a cheque. If someone later came in with the lost half, the Exchequer clerk could give a cynical chuckle and say the Restoration equivalent of "On yer bike, old son. That's just a piece o' wood".

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