Sunday 17 January 1668/69

(Lord’s day). To church myself after seeing every thing fitted for dinner, and so, after church, home, and thither comes Mrs. Batelier and her two daughters to dinner to us; and W. Hewer and his mother, and Mr. Spong. We were very civilly merry, and Mrs. Batelier a very discreet woman, but mighty fond in the stories she tells of her son Will. After dinner, Mr. Spong and I to my closet, there to try my instrument Parallelogram, which do mighty well, to my full content; but only a little stiff, as being new. Thence, taking leave of my guests, he and I and W. Hewer to White Hall, and there parting with Spong, a man that I mightily love for his plainness and ingenuity, I into the Court, and there up and down and spoke with my Lords Bellassis and Peterborough about the business now in dispute, about my deputing a Treasurer to pay the garrison at Tangier, which I would avoid, and not be accountable, and they will serve me therein. Here I met Hugh May, and he brings me to the knowledge of Sir Henry Capell, a Member of Parliament, and brother of my Lord of Essex, who hath a great value, it seems, for me; and they appoint a day to come and dine with me, and see my books, and papers of the Office, which I shall be glad to shew them, and have opportunity to satisfy them therein. Here all the discourse is, that now the King is of opinion to have the Parliament called, notwithstanding his late resolutions for proroguing them; so unstable are his councils, and those about him. So staying late talking in the Queen’s side, I away, with W. Hewer home, and there to read and talk with my wife, and so to bed.

5 Annotations

martinb  •  Link

Word "ingenuity" presumably here means something like artlessness, or lack of guile?

Terry Foreman  •  Link


The L&M Select Glossary has "wit, intelligence; freedom." Methinks not the last.

pepfie  •  Link

"plainness and ingenuity"

OED plainness

The quality or condition of being plain, in various senses of the adj.
2 Openness, honesty, or straightforwardness of conduct; frankness or directness of language.
4 Absence of or freedom from ornament, ostentatious display, or luxury; simplicity.

OED ingenuity

The employment of the word as the abstract n. from ingenious (for ingeniosity or *ingeniety) appears to be confined to Eng. and is connected with the confusion of the two adjs. in the 17th c.: see ingenious II and ingenuous 6.]

I Senses connected with ingenuous.
†1.b The quality that befits a free-born person; high or liberal quality (of education); hence, Liberal education, intellectual culture (cf. II). Obs.
†2 Nobility of character or disposition; honourableness, highmindedness, generosity. Obs.
3 Freedom from dissimulation; honesty, straightforwardness, sincerity; honourable or fair dealing; freedom from reserve, openness, candour, frankness. (Now rare, the current word being ingenuousness.)

II Senses connected with ingenious.
†4 High or distinguished intellectual capacity; genius, talent, quickness of wit. Obs. in general sense: see 6.
†5 Intellectual capacity; intelligence, sense, good judgement; normal condition of the mental faculties; (one's) senses or wits. Obs.
6 Capacity for invention or construction; skill or cleverness in contriving or making something (material or immaterial). Also as attribute of the thing, action, etc.: Skilfulness of contrivance or design. (The current sense.)

I'll bet my penny with martinb on plainness 2 and ingenuity 3.

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