Wednesday 20 January 1668/69
Up; and my wife, and I, and W. Hewer to White Hall, where she set us down; and there I spoke with my Lord Peterborough, to tell him of the day for his dining with me being altered by my Lord Sandwich from Friday to Saturday next. And thence heard at the Council-board the City, by their single counsel Symson, and the company of Strangers Merchants, a debate the business of water-baylage; a tax demanded upon all goods, by the City, imported and exported: which these Merchants oppose, and demanding leave to try the justice of the City’s demand by a Quo Warranto, which the City opposed, the Merchants did quite lay the City on their backs with great triumph, the City’s cause being apparently too weak: but here I observed Mr. Gold, the merchant, to speak very well, and very sharply, against the City. Thence to my wife at Unthanke’s, and with her and W. Hewer to Hercules Pillars, calling to do two or three things by the way, and there dined, and thence to the Duke of York’s house, and saw “Twelfth Night,” as it is now revived; but, I think, one of the weakest plays that ever I saw on the stage. This afternoon, before the play, I called with my wife at Dancre’s, the great landscape-painter, by Mr. Povy’s advice; and have bespoke him to come to take measure of my dining-room panels, and there I met with the pretty daughter of the coalseller’s, that lived in Cheapside, and now in Covent Garden, who hath her picture drawn here, but very poorly; but she is a pretty woman, and now, I perceive, married, a very pretty black woman. So, the play done, we home, my wife letting fall some words of her observing my eyes to be mightily employed in the playhouse, meaning upon women, which did vex me; but, however, when we come home, we were good friends; and so to read, and to supper, and so to bed.