February 1st. Up (my maids rising early this morning to washing), and being ready I found Mr. Strutt the purser below with 12 bottles of sacke, and tells me (which from Sir W. Batten I had heard before) how young Jack Davis has railed against Sir W. Batten for his endeavouring to turn him out of his place, at which for the fellow’s sake, because it will likely prove his ruin, I am sorry, though I do believe he is a very arch rogue. I took Strutt by coach with me to White Hall, where I set him down, and I to my Lord’s, but found him gone out betimes to the Wardrobe, which I am glad to see that he so attends his business, though it troubles me that my counsel to my prejudice must be the cause of it. They tell me that he goes into the country next week, and that the young ladies come up this week before the old lady. Here I hear how two men last night, justling for the wall about the New Exchange, did kill one another, each thrusting the other through; one of them of the King’s Chappell, one Cave, and the other a retayner of my Lord Generall Middleton’s. Thence to White Hall; where, in the Duke’s chamber, the King came and stayed an hour or two laughing at Sir W. Petty, who was there about his boat; and at Gresham College in general; at which poor Petty was, I perceive, at some loss; but did argue discreetly, and bear the unreasonable follies of the King’s objections and other bystanders with great discretion; and offered to take oddes against the King’s best boates; but the King would not lay, but cried him down with words only. Gresham College he mightily laughed at, for spending time only in weighing of ayre, and doing nothing else since they sat. Thence to Westminster Hall, and there met with diverse people, it being terme time. Among others I spoke with Mrs. Lane, of whom I doubted to hear something of the effects of our last meeting about a fortnight or three weeks ago, but to my content did not. Here I met with Mr. Pierce, who tells me of several passages at Court, among others how the King, coming the other day to his Theatre to see “The Indian Queene” (which he commends for a very fine thing), my Lady Castlemaine was in the next box before he came; and leaning over other ladies awhile to whisper to the King, she rose out of the box and went into the King’s, and set herself on the King’s right hand, between the King and the Duke of York; which, he swears, put the King himself, as well as every body else, out of countenance; and believes that she did it only to show the world that she is not out of favour yet, as was believed. Thence with Alderman Maynell by his coach to the ‘Change, and there with several people busy, and so home to dinner, and took my wife out immediately to the King’s Theatre, it being a new month, and once a month I may go, and there saw “The Indian Queene” acted; which indeed is a most pleasant show, and beyond my expectation; the play good, but spoiled with the ryme, which breaks the sense. But above my expectation most, the eldest Marshall did do her part most excellently well as I ever heard woman in my life; but her voice not so sweet as Ianthe’s; but, however, we came home mightily contented. Here we met Mr. Pickering and his mistress, Mrs. Doll Wilde; he tells me that the business runs high between the Chancellor and my Lord Bristoll against the Parliament; and that my Lord Lauderdale and Cooper open high against the Chancellor; which I am sorry for. In my way home I ‘light and to the Coffee-house, where I heard Lt. Coll. Baron tell very good stories of his travels over the high hills in Asia above the clouds, how clear the heaven is above them, how thicke like a mist the way is through the cloud that wets like a sponge one’s clothes, the ground above the clouds all dry and parched, nothing in the world growing, it being only a dry earth, yet not so hot above as below the clouds. The stars at night most delicate bright and a fine clear blue sky, but cannot see the earth at any time through the clouds, but the clouds look like a world below you. Thence home and to supper, being hungry, and so to the office, did business, specially about Creed, for whom I am now pretty well fitted, and so home to bed. This day in Westminster Hall W. Bowyer told me that his father is dead lately, and died by being drowned in the river, coming over in the night; but he says he had not been drinking. He was taken with his stick in his hand and cloake over his shoulder, as ruddy as before he died. His horse was taken overnight in the water, hampered in the bridle, but they were so silly as not to look for his master till the next morning, that he was found drowned.
2nd. Up and to the office, where, though Candlemas day, Mr. Coventry and Sir W. Pen and I all the morning, the others being at a survey at Deptford. At noon by coach to the ‘Change with Mr. Coventry, thence to the Coffee-house with Captain Coeke, who discoursed well of the good effects in some kind of a Dutch warr and conquest (which I did not consider before, but the contrary) that is, that the trade of the world is too little for us two, therefore one must down: 2ndly, that though our merchants will not be the better husbands by all this, yet our wool will bear a better price by vaunting of our cloths, and by that our tenants will be better able to pay rents, and our lands will be more worth, and all our owne manufactures, which now the Dutch outvie us in; that he thinks the Dutch are not in so good a condition as heretofore because of want of men always, and now from the warrs against the Turke more than ever. Then to the ‘Change again, and thence off to the Sun Taverne with Sir W. Warren, and with him discoursed long, and had good advice, and hints from him, and among other things he did give me a payre of gloves for my wife wrapt up in paper, which I would not open, feeling it hard; but did tell him that my wife should thank him, and so went on in discourse. When I came home, Lord! in what pain I was to get my wife out of the room without bidding her go, that I might see what these gloves were; and, by and by, she being gone, it proves a payre of white gloves for her and forty pieces in good gold, which did so cheer my heart, that I could eat no victuals almost for dinner for joy to think how God do bless us every day more and more, and more yet I hope he will upon the increase of my duty and endeavours. I was at great losse what to do, whether tell my wife of it or no, which I could hardly forbear, but yet I did and will think of it first before I do, for fear of making her think me to be in a better condition, or in a better way of getting money, than yet I am. After dinner to the office, where doing infinite of business till past to at night to the comfort of my mind, and so home with joy to supper and to bed. This evening Mr. Hempson came and told me how Sir W, Batten his master will not hear of continuing him in his employment as Clerk of the Survey at Chatham, from whence of a sudden he has removed him without any new or extraordinary cause, and I believe (as he himself do in part write, and J. Norman do confess) for nothing but for that he was twice with me the other day and did not wait upon him. So much he fears me and all that have to do with me. Of this more in the Mem. Book of my office upon this day, there I shall find it.
3rd. Up, and after a long discourse with my cozen Thomas Pepys, the executor, I with my wife by coach to Holborn, where I ‘light, and she to her father’s, I to the Temple and several places, and so to the ‘Change, where much business, and then home to dinner alone; and so to the Mitre Taverne by appointment (and there met by chance with W. Howe come to buy wine for my Lord against his going down to Hinchingbroke, and I private with him a great while discoursing of my Lord’s strangeness to me; but he answers that I have no reason to think any such thing, but that my Lord is only in general a more reserved man than he was before) to meet Sir W. Rider and Mr. Clerke, and there after much ado made an end, giving Mr. Custos L202 against Mr. Bland, which I endeavoured to bring down but could not, and think it is well enough ended for Mr. Bland for all that. Thence by coach to fetch my wife from her brother’s, and found her gone home. Called at Sir Robert Bernard’s about surrendering my estate in reversion to the use of my life, which will be done, and at Roger Pepys, who was gone to bed in pain of a boyle that he could not sit or stand. So home, where my wife is full of sad stories of her good-natured father and roguish brother, who is going for Holland and his wife, to be a soldier. And so after a little at the office to bed. This night late coming in my coach, coming up Ludgate Hill, I saw two gallants and their footmen taking a pretty wench, which I have much eyed, lately set up shop upon the hill, a seller of riband and gloves. They seek to drag her by some force, but the wench went, and I believe had her turn served, but, God forgive me! what thoughts and wishes I had of being in their place. In Covent Garden to-night, going to fetch home my wife, I stopped at the great Coffee-house’ there, where I never was before; where Dryden the poet (I knew at Cambridge), and all the wits of the town, and Harris the player, and Mr. Hoole of our College. And had I had time then, or could at ether times, it will be good coming thither, for there, I perceive, is very witty and pleasant discourse. But I could not tarry, and as it was late, they were all ready to go away.
4th. Up and to the office, where after a while sitting, I left the board upon pretence of serious business, and by coach to Paul’s School, where I heard some good speeches of the boys that were to be elected this year. Thence by and by with Mr. Pullen and Barnes (a great Non-Conformist) with several others of my old acquaintance to the Nag’s Head Taverne, and there did give them a bottle of sacke, and away again and I to the School, and up to hear the upper form examined; and there was kept by very many of the Mercers, Clutterbucke, a Barker, Harrington, and others; and with great respect used by them all, and had a noble dinner. Here they tell me, that in Dr. Colett’s will he says that he would have a Master found for the School that hath good skill in Latin, and (if it could be) one that had some knowledge of the Greeke; so little was Greeke known here at that time. Dr. Wilkins and one Mr. Smallwood, Posers. After great pleasure there, and specially to Mr. Crumlum, so often to tell of my being a benefactor to the School, I to my bookseller’s and there spent an hour looking over Theatrum Urbium and Flandria illustrata, with excellent cuts, with great content. So homeward, and called at my little milliner’s, where I chatted with her, her husband out of the way, and a mad merry slut she is. So home to the office, and by and by comes my wife home from the burial of Captain Grove’s wife at Wapping (she telling me a story how her mayd Jane going into the boat did fall down and show her arse in the boat), and alone comes my uncle Wight and Mr. Maes with the state of their case, which he told me very discreetly, and I believe is a very hard one, and so after drinking a bottle of ale or two they gone, and I a little more to the office, and so home to prayers and to bed. This evening I made an end of my letter to Creed about his pieces of eight, and sent it away to him. I pray God give good end to it to bring me some money, and that duly as from him.
5th. Up, and down by water, a brave morning, to Woolwich, and there spent an houre or two to good purpose, and so walked to Greenwich and thence to Deptford, where I found (with Sir W. Batten upon a survey) Sir J. Minnes, Sir W. Pen, and my Lady Batten come down and going to dinner. I dined with them, and so after dinner by water home, all the way going and coming reading “Faber Fortunae,” which I can never read too often. At home a while with my wife, and so to my office, where till 8 o’clock, and then home to look over some Brampton papers, and my uncle’s accounts as Generall-Receiver of the County for 1647 of our monthly assessment, which, contrary to my expectation, I found in such good order and so, thoroughly that I did not expect, nor could have thought, and that being done, having seen discharges for every farthing of money he received, I went to bed late with great quiett.
6th. Up, and to the office, where we sat all the morning, and so at noon to the ‘Change, where I met Mr. Coventry, the first time I ever saw him there, and after a little talke with him and other merchants, I up and down about several businesses, and so home, whither came one Father Fogourdy, an Irish priest, of my wife’s and her mother’s acquaintance in France, a sober, discreet person, but one that I would not have converse with my wife for fear of meddling with her religion, but I like the man well. Thence with my wife abroad, and left her at Tom’s, while I abroad about several businesses and so back to her, myself being vexed to find at my first coming Tom abroad, and all his books, papers, and bills loose upon the open table in the parlour, and he abroad, which I ranted at him for when he came in. Then by coach home, calling at my cozen Scott’s, who (she) lies dying, they say, upon a miscarriage. My wife could not be admitted to see her, nor anybody. At home to the office late writing letters, and then home to supper and to bed. Father Fogourdy confirms to me the newes that for certain there is peace between the Pope and King of France.
7th (Lord’s day). Up and to church, and thence home, my wife being ill ... kept her bed all day, and I up and dined by her bedside, and then all the afternoon till late at night writing some letters of business to my father stating of matters to him in general of great import, and other letters to ease my mind in the week days that I have not time to think of, and so up to my wife, and with great mirth read Sir W. Davenant’s two speeches in dispraise of London and Paris, by way of reproach one to another, and so to prayers and to bed.
8th. Up, and by coach called upon Mr. Phillips, and after a little talk with him away to my Lord Sandwich’s, but he being gone abroad, I staid a little and talked with Mr. Howe, and so to Westminster in term time, and there met Mr. Pierce, who told me largely how the King still do doat upon his women, even beyond all shame; and that the good Queen will of herself stop before she goes sometimes into her dressing-room, till she knows whether the King be there, for fear he should be, as she hath sometimes taken him, with Mrs. Stewart; and that some of the best parts of the Queen’s joynture are, contrary to faith, and against the opinion of my Lord Treasurer and his Council, bestowed or rented, I know not how, to my Lord Fitz-Harding and Mrs. Stewart, and others of that crew that the King do doat infinitely upon the Duke of Monmouth, apparently as one that he intends to have succeed him. God knows what will be the end of it! After he was gone I went and talked with Mrs. Lane about persuading her to Hawly, and think she will come on, which I wish were done, and so to Mr. Howlett and his wife, and talked about the same, and they are mightily for it, and I bid them promote it, for I think it will be for both their goods and my content. But I was much pleased to look upon their pretty daughter, which is grown a pretty mayd, and will make a fine modest woman. Thence to the ‘Change by coach, and after some business done, home to dinner, and thence to Guildhall, thinking to have heard some pleading, but there were no Courts, and so to Cade’s, the stationer, and there did look upon some pictures which he promised to give me the buying of, but I found he would have played the Jacke with me, but at last he did proffer me what I expected, and I have laid aside L10 or L12 worth, and will think of it, but I am loth to lay out so much money upon them. So home a little vexed in my mind to think how to-day I was forced to compliment W. Howe and admit myself to an equality with Mr. Moore, which is come to challenge in his discourse with me, but I will admit it no more, but let me stand or fall, I will show myself as strange to them as my Lord do himself to me. After at the office till 9 o’clock, I home in fear of some pain by taking cold, and so to supper and to bed.
9th. Up and to the office, where sat all the morning. At noon by coach with Mr. Coventry to the ‘Change, where busy with several people. Great talke of the Dutch proclaiming themselves in India, Lords of the Southern Seas, and deny traffick there to all ships but their owne, upon pain of confiscation; which makes our merchants mad. Great doubt of two ships of ours, the “Greyhound” and another, very rich, coming from the Streights, for fear of the Turkes. Matters are made up between the Pope and the King of France; so that now all the doubt is, what the French will do with their armies. Thence home, and there found Captain Grove in mourning for his wife, and Hawly, and they dined with me. After dinner, and Grove gone, Hawly and I talked of his mistress, Mrs. Lane, and I seriously advising him and inquiring his condition, and do believe that I shall bring them together. By and by comes Mr. Moore, with whom much good discourse of my Lord, and among other things told me that my Lord is mightily altered, that is, grown very high and stately, and do not admit of any to come into his chamber to him, as heretofore, and that I must not think much of his strangeness to me, for it was the same he do to every body, and that he would not have me be solicitous in the matter, but keep off and give him now and then a visit and no more, for he says he himself do not go to him now a days but when he sends for him, nor then do not stay for him if he be not there at the hour appointed, for, says he, I do find that I can stand upon my own legs and I will not by any over submission make myself cheap to any body and contemptible, which was the doctrine of the world that I lacked most, and shall follow it. I discoursed with him about my money that my Lord hath, and the L1000 that I stand bound with him in, to my cozen Thomas Pepys, in both which I will get myself at liberty as soon as I can; for I do not like his being angry and in debt both together to me; and besides, I do not perceive he looks after paying his debts, but runs farther and farther in. He being gone, my wife and I did walk an houre or two above in our chamber, seriously talking of businesses. I told her my Lord owed me L700, and shewed her the bond, and how I intended to carry myself to my Lord. She and I did cast about how to get Captain Grove for my sister, in which we are mighty earnest at present, and I think it would be a good match, and will endeavour it. So to my office a while, then home to supper and to bed.
10th. Up, and by coach to my Lord Sandwich, to his new house, a fine house, but deadly dear, in Lincoln’s Inne Fields, where I found and spoke a little to him. He is high and strange still, but did ask me how my wife did, and at parting remembered him to his cozen, which I thought was pretty well, being willing to flatter myself that in time he will be well again. Thence home straight and busy all the forenoon, and at noon with Mr. Bland to Mr. Povy’s, but he being at dinner and full of company we retreated and went into Fleet Street to a friend of his, and after a long stay, he telling me the long and most perplexed story of Coronell and Bushell’s business of sugars, wherein Parke and Green and Mr. Bland and 40 more have been so concerned about the King of Portugal’s duties, wherein every party has laboured to cheat another, a most pleasant and profitable story to hear, and in the close made me understand Mr. Maes’ business better than I did before. By and by dinner came, and after dinner and good discourse that and such as I was willing for improvement sake to hear, I went away too to White Hall to a Committee of Tangier, where I took occasion to demand of Creed whether he had received my letter, and he told me yes, and that he would answer it, which makes me much wonder what he means to do with me, but I will be even with him before I have done, let him make as light of it as he will. Thence to the Temple, where my cozen Roger Pepys did show me a letter my Father wrote to him last Terme to shew me, proposing such things about Sturtlow and a portion for Pall, and I know not what, that vexes me to see him plotting how to put me to trouble and charge, and not thinking to pay our debts and legacys, but I will write him a letter will persuade him to be wiser. So home, and finding my wife abroad (after her coming home from being with my aunt Wight to-day to buy Lent provisions) gone with Will to my brother’s, I followed them by coach, but found them not, for they were newly gone home from thence, which troubled me. I to Sir Robert Bernard’s chamber, and there did surrender my reversion in Brampton lands to the use of my will, which I was glad to have done, my will being now good in all parts. Thence homewards, calling a little at the Coffee-house, where a little merry discourse, and so home, where I found my wife, who says she went to her father’s to be satisfied about her brother, who I found at my house with her. He is going this next tide with his wife into Holland to seek his fortune. He had taken his leave of us this morning. I did give my wife 10s. to give him, and a coat that I had by me, a close-bodied light-coloured cloth coat, with a gold edgeing in each seam, that was the lace of my wife’s best pettycoat that she had when I married her. I staid not there, but to my office, where Stanes the glazier was with me till to at night making up his contract, and, poor man, I made him almost mad through a mistake of mine, but did afterwards reconcile all, for I would not have the man that labours to serve the King so cheap above others suffer too much. He gone I did a little business more, and so home to supper and to bed, being now pretty well again, the weather being warm. My pain do leave me without coming to any great excesse, but my cold that I had got I suppose was not very great, it being only the leaving of my wastecoat unbuttoned one morning.
11th. Up, after much pleasant discourse with my wife, and to the office, where we sat all the morning, and did much business, and some much to my content by prevailing against Sir W. Batten for the King’s profit. At noon home to dinner, my wife and I hand to fist to a very fine pig. This noon Mr. Falconer came and visited my wife, and brought her a present, a silver state-cup and cover, value about L3 or L4, for the courtesy I did him the other day. He did not stay dinner with me. I am almost sorry for this present, because I would have reserved him for a place to go in summer a-visiting at Woolwich with my wife.
12th. Up, and ready, did find below Mr. Creed’s boy with a letter from his master for me. So I fell to reading it, and it is by way of stating the case between S. Pepys and J. Creed most excellently writ, both showing his stoutness and yet willingness to peace, reproaching me yet flattering me again, and in a word in as good a manner as I think the world could have wrote, and indeed put me to a greater stand than ever I thought I could have been in this matter. All the morning thinking how to behave myself in the business, and at noon to the Coffee-house; thence by his appointment met him upon the ‘Change, and with him back to the Coffee-house, where with great seriousness and strangeness on both sides he said his part and I mine, he sometimes owning my favour and assistance, yet endeavouring to lessen it, as that the success of his business was not wholly or very much to be imputed to that assistance: I to alledge the contrary, and plainly to tell him that from the beginning I never had it in my mind to do him all that kindnesse for nothing, but he gaining 5 or L600, I did expect a share of it, at least a real and not a complimentary acknowledgment of it. In fine I said nothing all the while that I need fear he can do me more hurt with them than before I spoke them. The most I told him was after we were come to a peace, which he asked me whether he should answer the Board’s letter or no. I told him he might forbear it a while and no more. Then he asked how the letter could be signed by them without their much enquiry. I told him it was as I worded it and nothing at all else of any moment, whether my words be ever hereafter spoken of again or no. So that I have the same neither better nor worse force over him that I had before, if he should not do his part. And the peace between us was this: Says he after all, well, says he, I know you will expect, since there must be some condescension, that it do become me to begin it, and therefore, says he, I do propose (just like the interstice between the death of the old and the coming in of the present king, all the time is swallowed up as if it had never been) so our breach of friendship may be as if it had never been, that I should lay aside all misapprehensions of him or his first letter, and that he would reckon himself obliged to show the same ingenuous acknowledgment of my love and service to him as at the beginning he ought to have done, before by my first letter I did (as he well observed) put him out of a capacity of doing it, without seeming to do it servilely, and so it rests, and I shall expect how he will deal with me. After that I began to be free, and both of us to discourse of other things, and he went home with me and dined with me and my wife and very pleasant, having a good dinner and the opening of my lampry (cutting a notch on one side), which proved very good. After dinner he and I to Deptford, walking all the way, where we met Sir W. Petty and I took him back, and I got him to go with me to his vessel and discourse it over to me, which he did very well, and then walked back together to the waterside at Redriffe, with good discourse all the way. So Creed and I by boat to my house, and thence to coach with my wife and called at Alderman Backewell’s and there changed Mr. Falconer’s state-cup, that he did give us the other day, for a fair tankard. The cup weighed with the fashion L5 16s., and another little cup that Joyce Norton did give us 17s., both L6 13s.; for which we had the tankard, which came to L6 10s., at 5s. 7d. per oz., and 3s. in money, and with great content away thence to my brother’s, Creed going away there, and my brother bringing me the old silk standard that I lodged there long ago, and then back again home, and thence, hearing that my uncle Wight had been at my house, I went to him to the Miter, and there with him and Maes, Norbury, and Mr. Rawlinson till late eating some pot venison (where the Crowne earthen pot pleased me mightily), and then homewards and met Mr. Barrow, so back with him to the Miter and sat talking about his business of his discontent in the yard, wherein sometimes he was very foolish and pettish, till 12 at night, and so went away, and I home and up to my wife a-bed, with my mind ill at ease whether I should think that I had by this made myself a bad end by missing the certainty of L100 which I proposed to myself so much, or a good one by easing myself of the uncertain good effect but the certain trouble and reflection which must have fallen on me if we had proceeded to a public dispute, ended besides embarking myself against my Lord, who (which I had forgot) had given him his hand for the value of the pieces of eight at his rates which were all false, which by the way I shall take heed to the giving of my Lord notice of it hereafter whenever he goes out again.
13th. Up, and after I had told my wife in the morning in bed the passages yesterday with Creed my head and heart was mightily lighter than they were before, and so up and to the office, and thence, after sitting, at 11 o’clock with Mr. Coventry to the African House, and there with Sir W. Ryder by agreement we looked over part of my Lord Peterborough’s accounts, these being by Creed and Vernaty. Anon down to dinner to a table which Mr. Coventry keeps here, out of his L300 per annum as one of the Assistants to the Royall Company, a very pretty dinner, and good company, and excellent discourse, and so up again to our work for an hour till the Company came to having a meeting of their own, and so we broke up and Creed and I took coach and to Reeves, the perspective glass maker, and there did indeed see very excellent microscopes, which did discover a louse or mite or sand most perfectly and largely. Being sated with that we went away (yet with a good will were it not for my obligation to have bought one) and walked to the New Exchange, and after a turn or two and talked I took coach and home, and so to my office, after I had been with my wife and saw her day’s work in ripping the silke standard, which we brought home last night, and it will serve to line a bed, or for twenty uses, to our great content. And there wrote fair my angry letter to my father upon that that he wrote to my cozen Roger Pepys, which I hope will make him the more carefull to trust to my advice for the time to come without so many needless complaints and jealousys, which are troublesome to me because without reason.
14th (Lord’s day). Up and to church alone, where a lazy sermon of Mr. Mills, upon a text to introduce catechizing in his parish, which I perceive he intends to begin. So home and very pleasant with my wife at dinner. All the afternoon at my office alone doing business, and then in the evening after a walk with my wife in the garden, she and I to my uncle Wight’s to supper, where Mr. Norbury, but my uncle out of tune, and after supper he seemed displeased mightily at my aunt’s desiring [to] put off a copper kettle, which it seems with great study he had provided to boil meat in, and now she is put in the head that it is not wholesome, which vexed him, but we were very merry about it, and by and by home, and after prayers to bed.
15th. Up, and carrying my wife to my Lord’s lodgings left her, and I to White Hall, to the Duke; where he first put on a periwigg to-day; but methought his hair cut short in order thereto did look very prettily of itself, before he put on his periwigg.
[Charles II. followed his brother in the use of the periwig in the following April.]
Thence to his closet and there did our business, and thence Mr. Coventry and I down to his chamber and spent a little time, and so parted, and I took my wife homeward, I stopping at the Coffee-house, and thence a while to the ‘Change, where great newes of the arrivall of two rich ships, the Greyhound and another, which they were mightily afeard of, and great insurance given, and so home to dinner, and after an houre with my wife at her globes, I to the office, where very busy till 11 at night, and so home to supper and to bed. This afternoon Sir Thomas Chamberlin came to the office to me, and showed me several letters from the East Indys, showing the height that the Dutch are come to there, showing scorn to all the English, even in our only Factory there of Surat, beating several men, and hanging the English Standard St. George under the Dutch flagg in scorn; saying, that whatever their masters do or say at home, they will do what they list, and will be masters of all the world there; and have so proclaimed themselves Soveraigne of all the South Seas; which certainly our King cannot endure, if the Parliament will give him money. But I doubt and yet do hope they will not yet, till we are more ready for it. 16th. Up and to the office, where very busy all the morning, and most with Mr. Wood, I vexing him about his masts. At noon to the ‘Change a little and thence brought Mr. Barrow to dinner with me, where I had a haunch of venison roasted, given me yesterday, and so had a pretty dinner, full of discourse of his business, wherein the poor man is mightily troubled, and I pity him in it, but hope to get him some ease. He being gone I to the office, where very busy till night, that my uncle Wight and Mr. Maes came to me, and after discourse about Maes’ business to supper very merry, but my mind upon my business, and so they being gone I to my Vyall a little, which I have not done some months, I think, before, and then a little to my office, at 11 at night, and so home and to bed.
17th. Up, and with my wife, setting her down by her father’s in Long Acre, in so ill looked a place, among all the whore houses, that I was troubled at it, to see her go thither. Thence I to White Hall and there walked up and down talking with Mr. Pierce, who tells me of the King’s giving of my Lord Fitz-Harding two leases which belong indeed to the Queene, worth L20,000 to him; and how people do talk of it, and other things of that nature which I am sorry to hear. He and I walked round the Park with great pleasure, and back again, and finding no time to speak with my Lord of Albemarle, I walked to the ‘Change and there met my wife at our pretty Doll’s, and so took her home, and Creed also whom I met there, and sent her hose, while Creed and I staid on the ‘Change, and by and by home and dined, where I found an excellent mastiffe, his name Towser, sent me by a chyrurgeon. After dinner I took my wife again by coach (leaving Creed by the way going to Gresham College, of which he is now become one of the virtuosos) and to White Hall, where I delivered a paper about Tangier to my Lord Duke of Albemarle in the council chamber, and so to Mrs. Hunt’s to call my wife, and so by coach straight home, and at my office till 3 o’clock in the morning, having spent much time this evening in discourse with Mr. Cutler, who tells me how the Dutch deal with us abroad and do not value us any where, and how he and Sir W. Rider have found reason to lay aside Captain Cocke in their company, he having played some indiscreet and unfair tricks with them, and has lost himself every where by his imposing upon all the world with the conceit he has of his own wit, and so has, he tells me, Sir R. Ford also, both of whom are very witty men. He being gone Sir W. Rider came and staid with me till about 12 at night, having found ourselves work till that time, about understanding the measuring of Mr. Wood’s masts, which though I did so well before as to be thought to deal very hardly against Wood, yet I am ashamed I understand it no better, and do hope yet, whatever be thought of me, to save the King some more money, and out of an impatience to breake up with my head full of confused confounded notions, but nothing brought to a clear comprehension, I was resolved to sit up and did till now it is ready to strike 4 o’clock, all alone, cold, and my candle not enough left to light me to my owne house, and so, with my business however brought to some good understanding, and set it down pretty clear, I went home to bed with my mind at good quiet, and the girl sitting up for me (the rest all a-bed). I eat and drank a little, and to bed, weary, sleepy, cold, and my head akeing.
18th. Called up to the office and much against my will I rose, my head aching mightily, and to the office, where I did argue to good purpose for the King, which I have been fitting myself for the last night against Mr. Wood about his masts, but brought it to no issue. Very full of business till noon, and then with Mr. Coventry to the African House, and there fell to my Lord Peterborough’s accounts, and by and by to dinner, where excellent discourse, Sir G. Carteret and others of the African Company with us, and then up to the accounts again, which were by and by done, and then I straight home, my head in great pain, and drowsy, so after doing a little business at the office I wrote to my father about sending him the mastiff was given me yesterday. I home and by daylight to bed about 6 o’clock and fell to sleep, wakened about 12 when my wife came to bed, and then to sleep again and so till morning, and then: 19th. Up in good order in my head again and shaved myself, and then to the office, whither Mr. Cutler came, and walked and talked with me a great while; and then to the ‘Change together; and it being early, did tell me several excellent examples of men raised upon the ‘Change by their great diligence and saving; as also his owne fortune, and how credit grew upon him; that when he was not really worth L1100, he had credit for L100,000 of Sir W. Rider how he rose; and others. By and by joyned with us Sir John Bankes; who told us several passages of the East India Company; and how in his very case, when there was due to him and Alderman Mico L64,000 from the Dutch for injury done to them in the East Indys, Oliver presently after the peace, they delaying to pay them the money, sent them word, that if they did not pay them by such a day, he would grant letters of mark to those merchants against them; by which they were so fearful of him, they did presently pay the money every farthing. By and by, the ‘Change filling, I did many businesses, and about 2 o’clock went off with my uncle Wight to his house, thence by appointment we took our wives (they by coach with Mr. Mawes) and we on foot to Mr. Jaggard, a salter, in Thames Street, for whom I did a courtesy among the poor victuallers, his wife, whom long ago I had seen, being daughter to old Day, my uncle Wight’s master, is a very plain woman, but pretty children they have. They live methought at first in but a plain way, but afterward I saw their dinner, all fish, brought in very neatly, but the company being but bad I had no great pleasure in it. After dinner I to the office, where we should have met upon business extraordinary, but business not coming we broke up, and I thither again and took my wife; and taking a coach, went to visit my Ladys Jemimah and Paulina Montagu, and Mrs. Elizabeth Dickering, whom we find at their father’s new house
[The Earl of Sandwich had just moved to a house in Lincoln’s Inn Fields. Elizabeth Dickering, who afterwards married John Creed, was niece to Lord Sandwich.]
in Lincolne’s Inn Fields; but the house all in dirt. They received us well enough; but I did not endeavour to carry myself over familiarly with them; and so after a little stay, there coming in presently after us my Lady Aberguenny and other ladies, we back again by coach, and visited, my wife did, my she cozen Scott, who is very ill still, and thence to Jaggard’s again, where a very good supper and great store of plate; and above all after supper Mrs. Jaggard did at my entreaty play on the Vyall, but so well as I did not think any woman in England could and but few Maisters, I must confess it did mightily surprise me, though I knew heretofore that she could play, but little thought so well. After her I set Maes to singing, but he did it so like a coxcomb that I was sick of him. About 11 at night I carried my aunt home by coach, and then home myself, having set my wife down at home by the way. My aunt tells me they are counted very rich people, worth at least 10 or L12,000, and their country house all the yeare long and all things liveable, which mightily surprises me to think for how poore a man I took him when I did him the courtesy at our office. So after prayers to bed, pleased at nothing all the day but Mrs. Jaggard playing on the Vyall, and that was enough to make me bear with all the rest that did not content me.
20th. Up and to the office, where we sat all the morning, and at noon to the ‘Change with Mr. Coventry and thence home to dinner, after dinner by a gaily down to Woolwich, where with Mr. Falconer, and then at the other yard doing some business to my content, and so walked to Greenwich, it being a very fine evening and brought right home with me by water, and so to my office, where late doing business, and then home to supper and to bed.
21st. (Lord’s day). Up, and having many businesses at the office to-day I spent all the morning there drawing up a letter to Mr. Coventry about preserving of masts, being collections of my own, and at noon home to dinner, whither my brother Tom comes, and after dinner I took him up and read my letter lately of discontent to my father, and he is seemingly pleased at it, and cries out of my sister’s ill nature and lazy life there. He being gone I to my office again, and there made an end of my morning’s work, and then, after reading my vows of course, home and back again with Mr. Maes and walked with him talking of his business in the garden, and he being gone my wife and I walked a turn or two also, and then my uncle Wight fetching of us, she and I to his house to supper, and by the way calling on Sir G. Carteret to desire his consent to my bringing Maes to him, which he agreed to. So I to my uncle’s, but staid a great while vexed both of us for Maes not coming in, and soon he came, and I with him from supper to Sir G. Carteret, and there did largely discourse of the business, and I believe he may expect as much favour as he can do him, though I fear that will not be much. So back, and after sitting there a good while, we home, and going my wife told me how my uncle when he had her alone did tell her that he did love her as well as ever he did, though he did not find it convenient to show it publicly for reasons on both sides, seeming to mean as well to prevent my jealousy as his wife’s, but I am apt to think that he do mean us well, and to give us something if he should die without children. So home to prayers and to bed. My wife called up the people to washing by four o’clock in the morning; and our little girl Susan is a most admirable Slut and pleases us mightily, doing more service than both the others and deserves wages better.
22nd. Up and shaved myself, and then my wife and I by coach out, and I set her down by her father’s, being vexed in my mind and angry with her for the ill-favoured place, among or near the whore houses, that she is forced to come to him. So left her there, and I to Sir Th. Warwick’s but did not speak with him. Thence to take a turn in St. James’s Park, and meeting with Anth. Joyce walked with him a turn in the Pell Mell and so parted, he St. James’s ward and I out to Whitehall ward, and so to a picture-sellers by the Half Moone in the street over against the Exchange, and there looked over the maps of several cities and did buy two books of cities stitched together cost me 9s. 6d., and when I came home thought of my vowe, and paid 5s. into my poor box for it, hoping in God that I shall forfeit no more in that kind. Thence, meeting Mr. Moore, and to the Exchange and there found my wife at pretty Doll’s, and thence by coach set her at my uncle Wight’s, to go with my aunt to market once more against Lent, and I to the Coffee-house, and thence to the ‘Change, my chief business being to enquire about the manner of other countries keeping of their masts wet or dry, and got good advice about it, and so home, and alone ate a bad, cold dinner, my people being at their washing all day, and so to the office and all the afternoon upon my letter to Mr. Coventry about keeping of masts, and ended it very well at night and wrote it fair over. This evening came Mr. Alsopp the King’s brewer, with whom I spent an houre talking and bewailing the posture of things at present; the King led away by half-a-dozen men, that none of his serious servants and friends can come at him. These are Lauderdale, Buckingham, Hamilton, Fitz-Harding (to whom he hath, it seems, given L2,000 per annum in the best part of the King’s estate); and that that the old Duke of Buckingham could never get of the King. Progers is another, and Sir H. Bennett. He loves not the Queen at all, but is rather sullen to her; and she, by all reports, incapable of children. He is so fond of the Duke of Monmouth, that every body admires it; and he says the Duke hath said, that he would be the death of any man that says the King was not married to his mother: though Alsopp says, it is well known that she was a common whore before the King lay with her. But it seems, he says, that the King is mighty kind to these his bastard children; and at this day will go at midnight to my Lady Castlemaine’s nurses, and take the child and dance it in his arms: that he is not likely to have his tables up again in his house,—[The tables at which the king dined in public.-B.]—for the crew that are about him will not have him come to common view again, but keep him obscurely among themselves. He hath this night, it seems, ordered that the Hall (which there is a ball to be in to-night before the King) be guarded, as the Queen-Mother’s is, by his Horse Guards; whereas heretofore they were by the Lord Chamberlain or Steward, and their people. But it is feared they will reduce all to the soldiery, and all other places taken away; and what is worst of all, that he will alter the present militia, and bring all to a flying army. That my Lord Lauderdale, being Middleton’s enemy, and one that scorns the Chancellor even to open affronts before the King, hath got the whole power of Scotland into his hand; whereas the other day he was in a fair way to have had his whole estate, and honour, and life, voted away from him. That the King hath done himself all imaginable wrong in the business of my Lord Antrim, in Ireland; who, though he was the head of rebels, yet he by his letter owns to have acted by his father’s and mother’s, and his commissions; but it seems the truth is, he hath obliged himself, upon the clearing of his estate, to settle it upon a daughter of the Queene-Mother’s (by my Lord Germin, I suppose,) in marriage, be it to whom the Queene pleases; which is a sad story. It seems a daughter of the Duke of Lenox’s was, by force, going to be married the other day at Somerset House, to Harry Germin; but she got away and run to the King, and he says he will protect her. She is, it seems, very near akin to the King: Such mad doings there are every day among them! The rape upon a woman at Turnstile the other day, her husband being bound in his shirt, they both being in bed together, it being night, by two Frenchmen, who did not only lye with her but abused her with a linke, is hushed up for L300, being the Queen Mother’s servants. There was a French book in verse, the other day, translated and presented to the Duke of Monmouth in such a high stile, that the Duke of York, he tells me, was mightily offended at it. The Duke of Monmouth’s mother’s brother hath a place at Court; and being a Welchman (I think he told me) will talk very broad of the King’s being married to his sister. The King did the other day, at the Council, commit my Lord Digby’s’ chaplin, and steward, and another servant, who went upon the process begun there against their lord, to swear that they saw him at church, end receive the Sacrament as a Protestant, (which, the judges said, was sufficient to prove him such in the eye of the law); the King, I say, did commit them all to the Gate-house, notwithstanding their pleading their dependance upon him, and the faith they owed him as their lord, whose bread they eat. And that the King should say, that he would soon see whether he was King, or Digby. That the Queene-Mother hath outrun herself in her expences, and is now come to pay very ill, or run in debt; the money being spent that she received for leases. He believes there is not any money laid up in bank, as I told him some did hope; but he says, from the best informers he can assure me there is no such thing, nor any body that should look after such a thing; and that there is not now above L80,000 of the Dunkirke money left in stock. That Oliver in the year when he spent L1,400,000 in the Navy, did spend in the whole expence of the kingdom L2,600,000. That all the Court are mad for a Dutch war; but both he and I did concur, that it was a thing rather to be dreaded than hoped for; unless by the French King’s falling upon Flanders, they and the Dutch should be divided. That our Embassador had, it is true, an audience; but in the most dishonourable way that could be; for the Princes of the Blood (though invited by our Embassador, which was the greatest absurdity that ever Embassador committed these 400 years) were not there; and so were not said to give place to our King’s Embassador. And that our King did openly say, the other day in the Privy Chamber, that he would not be hectored out of his right and preeminencys by the King of France, as great as he was. That the Pope is glad to yield to a peace with the French (as the newes-book says), upon the basest terms that ever was. That the talke which these people about our King, that I named before, have, is to tell him how neither privilege of Parliament nor City is any thing; but his will is all, and ought to be so: and their discourse, it seems, when they are alone, is so base and sordid, that it makes the eares of the very gentlemen of the back-stairs (I think he called them) to tingle to hear it spoke in the King’s hearing; and that must be very bad indeed. That my Lord Digby did send to Lisbon a couple of priests, to search out what they could against the Chancellor concerning the match, as to the point of his knowing before-hand that the Queene was not capable of bearing children; and that something was given her to make her so. But as private as they were, when they came thither they were clapped up prisoners. That my Lord Digby endeavours what he can to bring the business into the House of Commons, hoping there to master the Chancellor, there being many enemies of his there; but I hope the contrary. That whereas the late King did mortgage ‘Clarendon’ to somebody for L20,000, and this to have given it to the Duke of Albemarle, and he sold it to my Lord Chancellor, whose title of Earldome is fetched from thence; the King hath this day sent his order to the Privy Seale for the payment of this L20,000 to my Lord Chancellor, to clear the mortgage! Ireland in a very distracted condition about the hard usage which the Protestants meet with, and the too good which the Catholiques. And from altogether, God knows my heart, I expect nothing but ruine can follow, unless things are better ordered in a little time. He being gone my wife came and told me how kind my uncle Wight had been to her to-day, and that though she says that all his kindness comes from respect to her she discovers nothing but great civility from him, yet but what she says he otherwise will tell me, but to-day he told her plainly that had she a child it should be his heir, and that should I or she want he would be a good friend to us, and did give my wife instructions to consent to all his wife says at any time, she being a pettish woman, which argues a design I think he has of keeping us in with his wife in order to our good sure, and he declaring her jealous of him that so he dares not come to see my wife as otherwise he would do and will endeavour to do. It looks strange putting all together, but yet I am in hopes he means well. My aunt also is mighty open to my wife and tells her mighty plain how her husband did intend to double her portion to her at his death as a jointure. That he will give presently L100 to her niece Mary and a good legacy at his death, and it seems did as much to the other sister, which vexed [me] to think that he should bestow so much upon his wife’s friends daily as he do, but it cannot be helped for the time past, and I will endeavour to remedy it for the time to come. After all this discourse with my wife at my office alone, she home to see how the wash goes on and I to make an end of my work, and so home to supper and to bed.
23rd. Up, it being Shrove Tuesday, and at the office sat all the morning, at noon to the ‘Change and there met with Sir W. Rider, and of a sudden knowing what I had at home, brought him and Mr. Cutler and Mr. Cooke, clerk to Mr. Secretary Morrice, a sober and pleasant man, and one that I knew heretofore, when he was my Lord ‘s secretary at Dunkirke. I made much of them and had a pretty dinner for a sudden. We talked very pleasantly, and they many good discourses of their travels abroad. After dinner they gone, I to my office, where doing many businesses very late, but to my good content to see how I grow in estimation every day more and more, and have things given more oftener than I used to have formerly, as to have a case of very pretty knives with agate shafts by Mrs. Russell. So home and to bed. This day, by the blessing of God, I have lived thirty-one years in the world; and, by the grace of God, I find myself not only in good health in every thing, and particularly as to the stone, but only pain upon taking cold, and also in a fair way of coming to a better esteem and estate in the world, than ever I expected. But I pray God give me a heart to fear a fall, and to prepare for it!
24th (Ash-Wednesday). Up and by water, it being a very fine morning, to White Hall, and there to speak with Sir Ph. Warwicke, but he was gone out to chappell, so I spent much of the morning walking in the Park, and going to the Queene’s chappell, where I staid and saw their masse, till a man came and bid me go out or kneel down: so I did go out. And thence to Somerset House; and there into the chappell, where Monsieur d’Espagne used to preach. But now it is made very fine, and was ten times more crouded than the Queene’s chappell at St. James’s; which I wonder at. Thence down to the garden of Somerset House, and up and down the new building, which in every respect will be mighty magnificent and costly. I staid a great while talking with a man in the garden that was sawing of a piece of marble, and did give him 6d. to drink. He told me much of the nature and labour of the worke, how he could not saw above 4 inches of the stone in a day, and of a greater not above one or two, and after it is sawed, then it is rubbed with coarse and then with finer and finer sand till they come to putty, and so polish it as smooth as glass. Their saws have no teeth, but it is the sand only which the saw rubs up and down that do the thing. Thence by water to the Coffee-house, and there sat with Alderman Barker talking of hempe and the trade, and thence to the ‘Change a little, and so home and dined with my wife, and then to the office till the evening, and then walked a while merrily with my wife in the garden, and so she gone, I to work again till late, and so home to supper and to bed.
25th. Up and to the office, where we sat, and thence with Mr. Coventry by coach to the glasshouse and there dined, and both before and after did my Lord Peterborough’s accounts. Thence home to the office, and there did business till called by Creed, and with him by coach (setting my wife at my brother’s) to my Lord’s, and saw the young ladies, and talked a little with them, and thence to White Hall, a while talking but doing no business, but resolved of going to meet my Lord tomorrow, having got a horse of Mr. Coventry to-day. So home, taking up my wife, and after doing something at my office home, God forgive me, disturbed in my mind out of my jealousy of my wife tomorrow when I am out of town, which is a hell to my mind, and yet without all reason. God forgive me for it, and mend me. So home, and getting my things ready for me, weary to bed.
26th. Up, and after dressing myself handsomely for riding, I out, and by water to Westminster, to Mr. Creed’s chamber, and after drinking some chocolate, and playing on the vyall, Mr. Mallard being there, upon Creed’s new vyall, which proves, methinks, much worse than mine, and, looking upon his new contrivance of a desk and shelves for books, we set out from an inne hard by, whither Mr. Coventry’s horse was carried, and round about the bush through bad ways to Highgate. Good discourse in the way had between us, and it being all day a most admirable pleasant day, we, upon consultation, had stopped at the Cocke, a mile on this side Barnett, being unwilling to put ourselves to the charge or doubtful acceptance of any provision against my Lord’s coming by, and there got something and dined, setting a boy to look towards Barnett Hill, against their coming; and after two or three false alarms, they come, and we met the coach very gracefully, and I had a kind receipt from both Lord and Lady as I could wish, and some kind discourse, and then rode by the coach a good way, and so fell to discoursing with several of the people, there being a dozen attending the coach, and another for the mayds and parson. Among others talking with W. Howe, he told me how my Lord in his hearing the other day did largely tell my Lord Peterborough and Povy (who went with them down to Hinchinbrooke) how and when he discarded Creed, and took me to him, and that since the Duke of York has several times thanked him for me, which did not a little please me, and anon I desiring Mr. Howe to tell me upon [what] occasion this discourse happened, he desired me to say nothing of it now, for he would not have my Lord to take notice of our being together, but he would tell me another time, which put me into some trouble to think what he meant by it. But when we came to my Lord’s house, I went in; and whether it was my Lord’s neglect, or general indifference, I know not, but he made me no kind of compliment there; and, methinks, the young ladies look somewhat highly upon me. So I went away without bidding adieu to anybody, being desirous not to be thought too servile. But I do hope and believe that my Lord do yet value me as high as ever, though he dare not admit me to the freedom he once did, and that my Lady is still the same woman. So rode home and there found my uncle Wight. ‘Tis an odd thing as my wife tells me his caressing her and coming on purpose to give her visits, but I do not trouble myself for him at all, but hope the best and very good effects of it. He being gone I eat something and my wife. I told all this day’s passages, and she to give me very good and rational advice how to behave myself to my Lord and his family, by slighting every body but my Lord and Lady, and not to seem to have the least society or fellowship with them, which I am resolved to do, knowing that it is my high carriage that must do me good there, and to appear in good clothes and garbe. To the office, and being weary, early home to bed.
27th. Up, but weary, and to the office, where we sat all the morning. Before I went to the office there came Bagwell’s wife to me to speak for her husband. I liked the woman very well and stroked her under the chin, but could not find in my heart to offer anything uncivil to her, she being, I believe, a very modest woman. At noon with Mr. Coventry to the African house, and to my Lord Peterborough’s business again, and then to dinner, where, before dinner, we had the best oysters I have seen this year, and I think as good in all respects as ever I eat in my life. I eat a great many. Great, good company at dinner, among others Sir Martin Noell, who told us the dispute between him, as farmer of the Additional Duty, and the East India Company, whether callicos be linnen or no; which he says it is, having been ever esteemed so: they say it is made of cotton woole, and grows upon trees, not like flax or hempe. But it was carried against the Company, though they stand out against the verdict. Thence home and to the office, where late, and so home to supper and to bed, and had a very pleasing and condescending answer from my poor father to-day in answer to my angry discontentful letter to him the other day, which pleases me mightily.
28th (Lord’s day). Up and walked to Paul’s; and by chance it was an extraordinary day for the Readers of the Inns of Court and all the Students to come to church, it being an old ceremony not used these twenty-five years, upon the first Sunday in Lent. Abundance there was of Students, more than there was room to seat but upon forms, and the Church mighty full. One Hawkins preached, an Oxford man. A good sermon upon these words: “But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable.” Both before and after sermon I was most impatiently troubled at the Quire, the worst that ever I heard. But what was extraordinary, the Bishop of London, who sat there in a pew, made a purpose for him by the pulpitt, do give the last blessing to the congregation; which was, he being a comely old man, a very decent thing, methought. The Lieutenant of the Tower, Sir J. Robinson, would needs have me by coach home with him, and sending word home to my house I did go and dine with him, his ordinary table being very good, and his lady a very high-carriaged but comely big woman; I was mightily pleased with her. His officers of his regiment dined with him. No discourse at table to any purpose, only after dinner my Lady would needs see a boy which was represented to her to be an innocent country boy brought up to towne a day or two ago, and left here to the wide world, and he losing his way fell into the Tower, which my Lady believes, and takes pity on him, and will keep him; but though a little boy and but young, yet he tells his tale so readily and answers all questions so wittily, that for certain he is an arch rogue, and bred in this towne; but my Lady will not believe it, but ordered victuals to be given him, and I think will keep him as a footboy for their eldest son. After dinner to chappell in the Tower with the Lieutenant, with the keyes carried before us, and the Warders and Gentleman-porter going before us. And I sat with the Lieutenant in his pew, in great state, but slept all the sermon. None, it seems, of the prisoners in the Tower that are there now, though they may, will come to prayers there. Church being done, I back to Sir John’s house and there left him and home, and by and by to Sir W. Pen, and staid a while talking with him about Sir J. Minnes his folly in his office, of which I am sicke and weary to speak of it, and how the King is abused in it, though Pen, I know, offers the discourse only like a rogue to get it out of me, but I am very free to tell my mind to him, in that case being not unwilling he should tell him again if he will or any body else. Thence home, and walked in the garden by brave moonshine with my wife above two hours, till past 8 o’clock, then to supper, and after prayers to bed.
29th. Up and by coach with Sir W. Pen to Charing Cross, and there I ‘light, and to Sir Phillip Warwick to visit him and discourse with him about navy business, which I did at large and he most largely with me, not only about the navy but about the general Revenue of England, above two hours, I think, many staying all the while without, but he seemed to take pains to let me either understand the affairs of the Revenue or else to be a witness of his pains and care in stating it. He showed me indeed many excellent collections of the State of the Revenue in former Kings and the late times, and the present. He showed me how the very Assessments between 1643 and 1659, which were taxes (besides Excise, Customes, Sequestrations, Decimations, King and Queene’s and Church Lands, or any thing else but just the Assessments), come to above fifteen millions. He showed me a discourse of his concerning the Revenues of this and foreign States. How that of Spayne was great, but divided with his kingdoms, and so came to little. How that of France did, and do much exceed ours before for quantity; and that it is at the will of the Prince to tax what he will upon his people; which is not here. That the Hollanders have the best manner of tax, which is only upon the expence of provisions, by an excise; and do conclude that no other tax is proper for England but a pound-rate, or excise upon the expence of provisions. He showed me every particular sort of payment away of money, since the King’s coming in, to this day; and told me, from one to one, how little he hath received of profit from most of them; and I believe him truly. That the L1,200,000 which the Parliament with so much ado did first vote to give the King, and since hath been reexamined by several committees of the present Parliament, is yet above L300,000 short of making up really to the King the L1,200,000, as by particulars he showed me.
[A committee was appointed in September, 1660, to consider the subject of the King’s revenue, and they “reported to the Commons that the average revenue of Charles I., from 1637 to 1641 inclusive, had been L895,819, and the average expenditure about L1,110,000. At that time prices were lower and the country less burthened with navy and garrisons, among which latter Dunkirk alone now cost more than L100,000 a year. It appeared, therefore, that the least sum to which the King could be expected to ‘conform his expense’ was L1,200,000.” Burnet writes, “It was believed that if two millions had been asked he could have carried it. But he (Clarendon) had no mind to put the King out of the necessity of having recourse to his Parliament.”—Lister’s Life of Clarendon, vol. ii., pp. 22, 23.]
And in my Lord Treasurer’s excellent letter to the King upon this subject, he tells the King how it was the spending more than the revenue that did give the first occasion of his father’s ruine, and did since to the rebels; who, he says, just like Henry the Eighth, had great and sudden increase of wealth, but yet, by overspending, both died poor; and further tells the King how much of this L1,200,000 depends upon the life of the Prince, and so must be renewed by Parliament again to his successor; which is seldom done without parting with some of the prerogatives of the Crowne; or if denied and he persists to take it of the people, it gives occasion to a civill war, which may, as it did in the late business of tonnage and poundage, prove fatal to the Crowne. He showed me how many ways the Lord Treasurer did take before he moved the King to farme the Customes in the manner he do, and the reasons that moved him to do it. He showed the a very excellent argument to prove, that our importing lesse than we export, do not impoverish the kingdom, according to the received opinion: which, though it be a paradox, and that I do not remember the argument, yet methought there was a great deale in what he said. And upon the whole I find him a most exact and methodicall man, and of great industry: and very glad that he thought fit to show me all this; though I cannot easily guess the reason why he should do it to me, unless from the plainness that he sees I use to him in telling him how much the King may suffer for our want of understanding the case of our Treasury. Thence to White Hall (where my Lord Sandwich was, and gave me a good countenance, I thought), and before the Duke did our usual business, and so I about several businesses in the house, and then out to the Mewes with Sir W. Pen. But in my way first did meet with W. Howe, who did of himself advise me to appear more free with my Lord and to come to him, for my own strangeness he tells me he thinks do make my Lord the worse. At the Mewes Sir W. Pen and Mr. Baxter did shew me several good horses, but Pen, which Sir W. Pen did give the Duke of York, was given away by the Duke the other day to a Frenchman, which Baxter is cruelly vexed at, saying that he was the best horse that he expects a great while to have to do with. Thence I to the ‘Change, and thence to a Coffee-house with Sir W. Warren, and did talk much about his and Wood’s business, and thence homewards, and in my way did stay to look upon a fire in an Inneyard in Lumbard Streete. But, Lord! how the mercers and merchants who had warehouses there did carry away their cloths and silks. But at last it was quenched, and I home to dinner, and after dinner carried my wife and set her and her two mayds in Fleete Streete to buy things, and I to White Hall to little purpose, and so to Westminster Hall, and there talked with Mrs. Lane and Howlett, but the match with Hawly I perceive will not take, and so I am resolved wholly to avoid occasion of further ill with her. Thence by water to Salsbury Court, and found my wife, by agreement, at Mrs. Turner’s, and after a little stay and chat set her and young Armiger down in Cheapside, and so my wife and I home. Got home before our mayds, who by and by came with a great cry and fright that they had like to have been killed by a coach; but, Lord! to see how Jane did tell the story like a foole and a dissembling fanatique, like her grandmother, but so like a changeling, would make a man laugh to death almost, and yet be vexed to hear her. By and by to the office to make up my monthly accounts, which I make up to-night, and to my great content find myself worth eight hundred and ninety and odd pounds, the greatest sum I ever yet knew, and so with a heart at great case to bed.