Monday 25 January 1668/69

Up, and to the Committee of Tangier, where little done, and thence I home by my own coach, and busy after dinner at my office all the afternoon till late at night, that my eyes were tired. So home, and my wife shewed me many excellent prints of Nanteuil’s and others, which W. Batelier hath, at my desire, brought me out of France, of the King, and Colbert, and others, most excellent, to my great content. But he hath also brought a great many gloves perfumed, of several sorts; but all too big by half for her, and yet she will have two or three dozen of them, which vexed me, and made me angry. So she, at last, to please me, did come to take what alone I thought fit, which pleased me. So, after a little supper, to bed, my eyes being very bad.

13 Annotations

First Reading

Australian Susan  •  Link

Nanteuil's prints are exceptional. Thank you for finding these for us, TF. What an addition to Sam's collections.

Jesse  •  Link

Re: Pepys had these

Had which? The Louis XIV is dated a year later and the Colbert doesn't look like an engraving. The Louis XIV is impressive. Why would Pepys, an employee of the DoY no less, be interested in portraits of not the most friendly foreign potentates?

Dorothy  •  Link

Collecting prints was a popular hobby. One might have a collection of rulers of countries or famous military men or famous court beauties or whatever struck the fancy. Its modern equivalent, I suppose, would be collecting photos of movie stars or athletes.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Here's an earlier Louis XIV.…

L&M note Pepys lost these prints in the Navy Office fire of 1673, but replaced Louis and Colbert and others with the help of John Brisbane, secretary to the French embassy. His final collection included 47 by Nanteuil, the premier portrait engraver.

Jesse, Elizabeth is showing Samuel the prints. They've talked of a trip to her native France. Charles II and retinue had been in exile there before the Restoration. The English were cultural followers of many things French. Two mundane examples: Pepys's recent dining triumph à la mode; how many plays they see are adaptations from French ones.

Dorothy  •  Link

Gloves must not have lasted long. Elizabeth wants two or three dozen? Of course people gave them as small gifts, so I suppose having some around ready to give would make sense, but then there would be no reason to have an argument about whether they fit her. That's another question. In these accounts people are always giving gloves. (Valentine's Day, birthdays, funerals) How did they manage to get gloves that fit? If anyone knows where to find the answers to these trivia questions, please let me know!

john  •  Link

Gloves also seemed to be off-the-rack and not bespoke.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

The glove industry had a vital stake in promoting their use for all occasions.

The Worshipful Company of Glovers is one of the Livery Companies of the City of London. Glovers were originally classified as Cordwainers… , but eventually separated to form their own organization in 1349. They received a Royal Charter of incorporation in 1639. The Company is now, as are most other Livery Companies, a charitable body, instead of a body that retains links to its original trade. A ceremonial link, though, is still maintained; the Company formally presents the Sovereign with gloves upon his or her coronation.

The Company ranks sixty-second in the order of precedence of Livery Companies. The Company's motto is True Hearts and Warm Hands.…

English Man's Gauntlett - England, c. 1625-1650

AnnieC  •  Link

@Dorothy: One can imagine a pair of gloves being passed as a small gift from person to person until they eventually came into the hands (ha-ha) of someone who could actually wear them.

Stan Oram  •  Link

My great grandfather was a Cordwainer and according to my father used to get very irate if anyone called him a cobbler. Apparently, cobblers only mended shoes and boots but a cordwainer made them (from scratch).

Second Reading

Nicolas  •  Link

John Shakespeare (c. 1531 – 7 September 1601), an English businessman in Stratford-upon-Avon, and the father of William Shakespeare, was a glover.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

Yes, they had many pairs of gloves.

The place was filthy. There was nowhere to wash your hands when out in public. Gloves protected your hands from dirt and who knows what. But once they were dirty, or got wet, they were ruined. No way to clean kid gloves.

So a pair might last a couple of days if you were very careful.

San Diego Sarah  •  Link

"... and thence I home by my own coach ..."

John Gadbury’s London Diary -- Winds and rain

The window must have been fixed. He's been using other people's coaches for a few days.

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