May 1st. Up betimes and my father with me, and he and I all the morning and Will Stankes private, in my wife's closet above, settling our matters concerning our Brampton estate, &c., and I find that there will be, after all debts paid within L100, L50 per annum clear coming towards my father's maintenance, besides L25 per annum annuities to my Uncle Thomas and Aunt Perkins. Of which, though I was in my mind glad, yet thought it not fit to let my father know it thoroughly, but after he had gone out to visit my uncle Thomas and brought him to dinner with him, and after dinner I got my father, brother Tom, and myself together, I did make the business worse to them, and did promise L20 out of my own purse to make it L50 a year to my father, propounding that Stortlow may be sold to pay L200 for his satisfaction therein and the rest to go towards payment of debts and legacies. The truth is I am fearful lest my father should die before debts are paid, and then the land goes to Tom and the burden of paying all debts will fall upon the rest of the land. Not that I would do my brother any real hurt. I advised my father to good husbandry and to living within the compass of L50 a year, and all in such kind words, as not only made, them but myself to weep, and I hope it will have a good effect.
That being done, and all things agreed on, we went down, and after a glass of wine we all took horse, and I, upon a horse hired of Mr. Game, saw him out of London, at the end of Bishopsgate Street, and so I turned and rode, with some trouble, through the fields, and then Holborn, &c., towards Hide Park, whither all the world, I think, are going, and in my going, almost thither, met W. Howe coming galloping upon a little crop black nag; it seems one that was taken in some ground of my Lord's, by some mischance being left by his master, a thief; this horse being found with black cloth ears on, and a false mayne, having none of his own; and I back again with him to the Chequer, at Charing Cross, and there put up my own dull jade, and by his advice saddled a delicate stone-horse of Captain Ferrers's, and with that rid in state to the Park, where none better mounted than I almost, but being in a throng of horses, seeing the King's riders showing tricks with their managed horses, which were very strange, my stone-horse was very troublesome, and begun to, fight with other horses, to the dangering him and myself, and with much ado I got out, and kept myself out of harm's way.. Here I saw nothing good, neither the King, nor my Lady Castlemaine, nor any great ladies or beauties being there, there being more pleasure a great deal at an ordinary day; or else those few good faces that there were choked up with the many bad ones, there being people of all sorts in coaches there, to some thousands, I think. Going thither in the highway, just by the Park gate, I met a boy in a sculler boat, carried by a dozen people at least, rowing as hard as he could drive, it seems upon some wager.
By and by, about seven or eight o'clock, homeward; and changing my horse again, I rode home, coaches going in great crowds to the further end of the town almost. In my way, in Leadenhall Street, there was morris-dancing which I have not seen a great while. So set my horse up at Game's, paying 5s. for him. And so home to see Sir J. Minnes, who is well again, and after staying talking with him awhile, I took leave and went to hear Mrs. Turner's daughter, at whose house Sir J. Minnes lies, play on the harpsicon; but, Lord! it was enough to make any man sick to hear her; yet I was forced to commend her highly. So home to supper and to bed, Ashwell playing upon the tryangle very well before I went to bed. This day Captain Grove sent me a side of pork, which was the oddest present, sure, that was ever made any man; and the next, I remember I told my wife, I believe would be a pound of candles, or a shoulder of mutton; but the fellow do it in kindness, and is one I am beholden to. So to bed very weary, and a little galled for lack of riding, praying to God for a good journey to my father, of whom I am afeard, he being so lately ill of his pain.
2nd. Being weary last night, I slept till almost seven o'clock, a thing I have not done many a day. So up and to my office (being come to some angry words with my wife about neglecting the keeping of the house clean, I calling her beggar, and she me pricklouse, which vexed me) and there all the morning. So to the Exchange and then home to dinner, and very merry and well pleased with my wife, and so to the office again, where we met extraordinary upon drawing up the debts of the Navy to my Lord Treasurer. So rose and up to Sir W. Pen to drink a glass of bad syder in his new far low dining room, which is very noble, and so home, where Captain Ferrers and his lady are come to see my wife, he being to go the beginning of next week to France to sea and I think to fetch over my young Lord Hinchinbroke. They being gone I to my office to write letters by the post, and so home to supper and to bed.
3rd (Lord's day). Up before 5 o'clock and alone at setting my Brampton papers to rights according to my father's and my computation and resolution the other day to my good content, I finding that there will be clear saved to us L50 per annum, only a debt of it may be L100. So made myself ready and to church, where Sir W. Pen showed me the young lady which young Dawes, that sits in the new corner-pew in the church, hath stole away from Sir Andrew Rickard, her guardian, worth L1000 per annum present, good land, and some money, and a very well-bred and handsome lady: he, I doubt, but a simple fellow. However, he got this good luck to get her, which methinks I could envy him with all my heart. Home to dinner with my wife, who not being very well did not dress herself but staid at home all day, and so I to church in the afternoon and so home again, and up to teach Ashwell the grounds of time and other things on the tryangle, and made her take out a Psalm very well, she having a good ear and hand. And so a while to my office, and then home to supper and prayers, to bed, my wife and I having a little falling out because I would not leave my discourse below with her and Ashwell to go up and talk with her alone upon something she has to say. She reproached me but I had rather talk with any body than her, by which I find I think she is jealous of my freedom with Ashwell, which I must avoid giving occasion of.
4th. Up betimes and to setting my Brampton papers in order and looking over my wardrobe against summer, and laying things in order to send to my brother to alter. By and by took boat intending to have gone down to Woolwich, but seeing I could not get back time enough to dinner, I returned and home. Whither by and by the dancing-master' came, whom standing by, seeing him instructing my wife, when he had done with her, he would needs have me try the steps of a coranto, and what with his desire and my wife's importunity, I did begin, and then was obliged to give him entry-money 10s., and am become his scholler. The truth is, I think it a thing very useful for a gentleman, and sometimes I may have occasion of using it, and though it cost me what I am heartily sorry it should, besides that I must by my oath give half as much more to the poor, yet I am resolved to get it up some other way, and then it will not be above a month or two in a year. So though it be against my stomach yet I will try it a little while; if I see it comes to any great inconvenience or charge I will fling it off. After I had begun with the steps of half a coranto, which I think I shall learn well enough, he went away, and we to dinner, and by and by out by coach, and set my wife down at my Lord Crew's, going to see my Lady Jem. Montagu, who is lately come to town, and I to St. James's; where Mr. Coventry, Sir W. Pen and I staid a good while for the Duke's coming in, but not coming, we walked to White Hall; and meeting the King, we followed him into the Park, where Mr. Coventry and he talked of building a new yacht, which the King is resolved to have built out of his privy purse, he having some contrivance of his own.
The talk being done, we fell off to White Hall, leaving the King in the Park, and going back, met the Duke going towards St. James's to meet us. So he turned back again, and to his closett at White Hall; and there, my Lord Sandwich present, we did our weekly errand, and so broke up; and I down into the garden with my Lord Sandwich (after we had sat an hour at the Tangier Committee); and after talking largely of his own businesses, we begun to talk how matters are at Court: and though he did not flatly tell me any such thing, yet I do suspect that all is not kind between the King and the Duke, and that the King's fondness to the little Duke do occasion it; and it may be that there is some fear of his being made heir to the Crown. But this my Lord did not tell me, but is my guess only; and that my Lord Chancellor is without doubt falling past hopes. He being gone to Chelsey by coach I to his lodgings, where my wife staid for me, and she from thence to see Mrs. Pierce and called me at Whitehall stairs (where I went before by land to know whether there was any play at Court to-night) and there being none she and I to Mr. Creed to the Exchange, where she bought something, and from thence by water to White Fryars, and wife to see Mrs. Turner, and then came to me at my brother's, where I did give him order about my summer clothes, and so home by coach, and after supper to bed to my wife, with whom I have not lain since I used to lie with my father till to-night.
5th. Up betimes and to my office, and there busy all the morning, among other things walked a good while up and down with Sir J. Minnes, he telling many old stories of the Navy, and of the state of the Navy at the beginning of the late troubles, and I am troubled at my heart to think, and shall hereafter cease to wonder, at the bad success of the King's cause, when such a knave as he (if it be true what he says) had the whole management of the fleet, and the design of putting out of my Lord Warwick, and carrying the fleet to the King, wherein he failed most fatally to the King's ruin. Dined at home, and after dinner up to try my dance, and so to the office again, where we sat all the afternoon. In the evening Deane of Woolwich went home with me and showed me the use of a little sliding ruler, less than that I bought the other day, which is the same with that, but more portable; however I did not seem to understand or even to have seen anything of it before, but I find him an ingenious fellow, and a good servant in his place to the King.
Thence to my office busy writing letters, and then came Sir W. Warren, staying for a letter in his business by the post, and while that was writing he and I talked about merchandise, trade, and getting of money. I made it my business to enquire what way there is for a man bred like me to come to understand anything of trade. He did most discretely answer me in all things, shewing me the danger for me to meddle either in ships or merchandise of any sort or common stocks, but what I have to keep at interest, which is a good, quiett, and easy profit, and once in a little while something offers that with ready money you may make use of money to good profit. Wherein I concur much with him, and parted late with great pleasure and content in his discourse, and so home to supper and to bed. It has been this afternoon very hot and this evening also, and about 11 at night going to bed it fell a-thundering and lightening, the greatest flashes enlightening the whole body of the yard, that ever I saw in my life.
6th. Up betimes and to my office a good while at my new rulers, then to business, and towards noon to the Exchange with Creed, where we met with Sir J. Minnes coming in his coach from Westminster, who tells us, in great heat, that, by God, the Parliament will make mad work; that they will render all men incapable of any military or civil employment that have borne arms in the late troubles against the King, excepting some persons; which, if it be so, as I hope it is not, will give great cause of discontent, and I doubt will have but bad effects. I left them at the Exchange and walked to Paul's Churchyard to look upon a book or two, and so back, and thence to the Trinity House, and there dined, where, among other discourse worth hearing among the old seamen, they tell us that they have catched often in Greenland in fishing whales with the iron grapnells that had formerly been struck into their bodies covered over with fat; that they have had eleven hogsheads of oyle out of the tongue of a whale. Thence after dinner home to my office, and there busy till the evening. Then home and to supper, and while at supper comes Mr. Pembleton, and after supper we up to our dancing room and there danced three or four country dances, and after that a practice of my coranto I began with him the other day, and I begin to think that I shall be able to do something at it in time. Late and merry at it, and so weary to bed.
7th. Up betimes and to my office awhile, and then by water with my wife, leaving her at the new Exchange, and I to see Dr. Williams, and spoke with him about my business with Tom Trice, and so to my brother's, who I find very careful now-a-days, more than ordinary in his business and like to do well. From thence to Westminster, and there up and down from the Hall to the Lobby, the Parliament sitting. Sir Thomas Crew this day tells me that the Queen, hearing that there was L40,000 per annum brought into her account among the other expences of the Crown to the Committee of Parliament, she took order to let them know that she hath yet for the payment of her whole family received but L4,000, which is a notable act of spirit, and I believe is true. So by coach to my Lord Crew's, and there dined with him. He tells me of the order the House of Commons have made for the drawing an Act for the rendering none capable of preferment or employment in the State, but who have been loyall and constant to the King and Church; which will be fatal to a great many, and makes me doubt lest I myself, with all my innocence during the late times, should be brought in, being employed in the Exchequer; but, I hope, God will provide for me. This day the new Theatre Royal begins to act with scenes the Humourous Lieutenant, but I have not time to see it, nor could stay to see my Lady Jemimah lately come to town, and who was here in the house, but dined above with her grandmother. But taking my wife at my brother's home by coach, and the officers being at Deptford at a Pay we had no office, but I took my wife by water and so spent the evening, and so home with great pleasure to supper, and then to bed.
8th. Up very early and to my office, there preparing letters to my father of great import in the settling of our affairs, and putting him upon a way [of] good husbandry, I promising to make out of my own purse him up to L50 per annum, till either by my uncle Thomas's death or the fall of the Wardrobe place he be otherwise provided. That done I by water to the Strand, and there viewed the Queen-Mother's works at Somersett House, and thence to the new playhouse, but could not get in to see it. So to visit my Lady Jemimah, who is grown much since I saw her; but lacks mightily to be brought into the fashion of the court to set her off: Thence to the Temple, and there sat till one o'clock reading at Playford's in Dr. Usher's 'Body of Divinity' his discourse of the Scripture, which is as much, I believe, as is anywhere said by any man, but yet there is room to cavill, if a man would use no faith to the tradition of the Church in which he is born, which I think to be as good an argument as most is brought for many things, and it may be for that among others. Thence to my brother's, and there took up my wife and Ashwell to the Theatre Royall, being the second day of its being opened. The house is made with extraordinary good contrivance, and yet hath some faults, as the narrowness of the passages in and out of the Pitt, and the distance from the stage to the boxes, which I am confident cannot hear; but for all other things it is well, only, above all, the musique being below, and most of it sounding under the very stage, there is no hearing of the bases at all, nor very well of the trebles, which sure must be mended. The play was "The Humerous Lieutenant," a play that hath little good in it, nor much in the very part which, by the King's command, Lacy now acts instead of Clun. In the dance, the tall devil's actions was very pretty.
The play being done, we home by water, having been a little shamed that my wife and woman were in such a pickle, all the ladies being finer and better dressed in the pitt than they used, I think, to be. To my office to set down this day's passage, and, though my oath against going to plays do not oblige me against this house, because it was not then in being, yet believing that at the time my meaning was against all publique houses, I am resolved to deny myself the liberty of two plays at Court, which are in arreare to me for the months of March and April, which will more than countervail this excess, so that this month of May is the first that I must claim a liberty of going to a Court play according to my oath. So home to supper, and at supper comes Pembleton, and afterwards we all up to dancing till late, and so broke up and to bed, and they say that I am like to make a dancer.
9th. Up betimes and to my office, whither sooner than ordinary comes Mr. Hater desiring to speak a word to me alone, which I was from the disorder of his countenance amused at, and so the poor man began telling me that by Providence being the last Lord's day at a meeting of some Friends upon doing of their duties, they were surprised, and he carried to the Counter, but afterwards released; however, hearing that Sir W. Batten do hear of [it,] he thought it good to give me an account of it, lest it might tend to any prejudice to me. I was extraordinary surprised with it, and troubled for him, knowing that now it is out it is impossible for me to conceal it, or keep him in employment under me without danger to myself. I cast about all I could, and did give him the best advice I could, desiring to know if I should promise that he would not for the time to come commit the same, he told me he desired that I would rather forbear to promise that, for he durst not do it, whatever God in His providence shall do with him, and that for my part he did bless God and thank me for all the love and kindness I have shewed him hitherto. I could not without tears in my eyes discourse with him further, but at last did pitch upon telling the truth of the whole to Mr. Coventry as soon as I could, and to that end did use means to prevent Sir W. Batten (who came to town last night) from going to that end to-day, lest he might doe it to Sir G. Carteret or Mr. Coventry before me; which I did prevail and kept him at the office all the morning. At noon dined at home with a heavy heart for the poor man, and after dinner went out to my brother's, and thence to Westminster, where at Mr. Jervas's, my old barber, I did try two or three borders and perriwiggs, meaning to wear one; and yet I have no stomach [for it,] but that the pains of keeping my hair clean is so great. He trimmed me, and at last I parted, but my mind was almost altered from my first purpose, from the trouble that I foresee will be in wearing them also. Thence by water home and to the office, where busy late, and so home to supper and bed, with my mind much troubled about T. Hater.
10th (Lord's day). Up betimes, and put on a black cloth suit, with white lynings under all, as the fashion is to wear, to appear under the breeches. So being ready walked to St. James's, where I sat talking with Mr. Coventry, while he made himself ready, about several businesses of the Navy, and afterwards, the Duke being gone out, he and I walked to White Hall together over the Park, I telling him what had happened to Tom Hater, at which he seems very sorry, but tells me that if it is not made very publique, it will not be necessary to put him away at present, but give him good caution for the time to come. However, he will speak to the Duke about it and know his pleasure. Parted with him there, and I walked back to St. James's, and was there at mass, and was forced in the crowd to kneel down; and mass being done, to the King's Head ordinary, whither I sent for Mr. Creed and there we dined, where many Parliament- men; and most of their talk was about the news from Scotland, that the Bishop of Galloway was besieged in his house by some woman, and had like to have been outraged, but I know not how he was secured; which is bad news, and looks just as it did in the beginning of the late troubles. From thence they talked of rebellion; and I perceive they make it their great maxime to be sure to master the City of London, whatever comes of it or from it. After that to some other discourse, and, among other things, talking of the way of ordinaries, that it is very convenient, because a man knows what he hath to pay: one did wish that, among many bad, we could learn two good things of France, which were that we would not think it below the gentleman, or person of honour at a tavern, to bargain for his meat before he eats it; and next, to take no servant without certificate from some friend or gentleman of his good behaviour and abilities. Hence with Creed into St. James's Park, and there walked all the afternoon, and thence on foot home, and after a little while at my office walked in the garden with my wife, and so home to supper, and after prayers to bed. My brother Tom supped with me, and should have brought my aunt Ellen with him; she was not free to go abroad.
11th. Up betimes, and by water to Woolwich on board the Royall James, to see in what dispatch she is to be carried about to Chatham. So to the yard a little, and thence on foot to Greenwich, where going I was set upon by a great dogg, who got hold of my garters, and might have done me hurt; but, Lord, to see in what a maze I was, that, having a sword about me, I never thought of it, or had the heart to make use of it, but might, for want of that courage, have been worried. Took water there and home, and both coming and going did con my lesson on my Ruler to measure timber, which I think I can well undertake now to do. At home there being Pembleton I danced, and I think shall come on to do something in a little time, and after dinner by coach with Sir W. Pen (setting down his daughter at Clerkenwell), to St. James's, where we attended the Duke of York: and, among other things, Sir G. Carteret and I had a great dispute about the different value of the pieces of eight rated by Mr. Creed at 4s. and 5d., and by Pitts at 4s. and 9d., which was the greatest husbandry to the King? he persisting that the greatest sum was; which is as ridiculous a piece of ignorance as could be imagined. However, it is to be argued at the Board, and reported to the Duke next week; which I shall do with advantage, I hope. Thence to the Tangier Committee, where we should have concluded in sending Captain Cuttance and the rest to Tangier to deliberate upon the design of the Mole before they begin to work upon it, but there being not a committee (my Lord intending to be there but was taken up at my Lady Castlemayne's) I parted and went homeward, after a little discourse with Mr. Pierce the surgeon, who tells me that my Lady Castlemaine hath now got lodgings near the King's chamber at Court; and that the other day Dr. Clerke and he did dissect two bodies, a man and a woman; before the King, with which the King was highly pleased.
By water and called upon Tom Trice by appointment with Dr. Williams, but the Dr. did not come, it seems by T. Trice's desire, not thinking he should be at leisure. However, in general we talked of our business, and I do not find that he will come to any lower terms than L150, which I think I shall not give him but by law, and so we parted, and I called upon Mr. Crumlum, and did give him the 10s. remaining, not laid out of the L5 I promised him for the school, with which he will buy strings, and golden letters upon the books I did give them. I sat with him and his wife a great while talking, and she is [a] pretty woman, never yet with child, and methinks looks as if her mouth watered now and then upon some of her boys. Then upon Tom Pepys, the Turner, desiring his father and his letter to Piggott signifying his consent to the selling of his land for the paying of us his money, and so home, and finding Pembleton there we did dance till it was late, and so to supper and to bed.
12th. Up between four and five, and after dressing myself then to my office to prepare business against the afternoon, where all the morning, and dined at noon at home, where a little angry with my wife for minding nothing now but the dancing-master, having him come twice a day, which is a folly. Again, to my office. We sat till late, our chief business being the reconciling the business of the pieces of eight mentioned yesterday before the Duke of York, wherein I have got the day, and they are all brought over to what I said, of which I am proud. Late writing letters, and so home to supper and to bed. Here I found Creed staying for me, and so after supper I staid him all night and lay with me, our great discourse being the folly of our two doting knights, of which I am ashamed.
13th. Lay till 6 o'clock and then up, and after a little talk and mirth, he went away, and I to my office, where busy all the morning, and at noon home to dinner, and after dinner Pembleton came and I practised. But, Lord! to see how my wife will not be thought to need telling by me or Ashwell, and yet will plead that she has learnt but a month, which causes many short fallings out between us. So to my office, whither one-eyed Cooper came to see me, and I made him to show me the use of platts, and to understand the lines, and how to find how lands bear, &c., to my great content. Then came Mr. Barrow, storekeeper of Chatham, who tells me many things, how basely Sir W. Batten has carried himself to him, and in all things else like a passionate dotard, to the King's great wrong. God mend all, for I am sure we are but in an ill condition in the Navy, however the King is served in other places. Home to supper, to cards, and to bed.
14th. Up betimes and put up some things to send to Brampton. Then abroad to the Temple, and up and down about business, and met Mr. Moore; and with him to an alehouse in Holborn; where in discourse he told me that he fears the King will be tempted to endeavour the setting the Crown upon the little Duke, which may cause troubles; which God forbid, unless it be his due! He told me my Lord do begin to settle to business again, which I am glad of, for he must not sit out, now he has done his own business by getting his estate settled, and that the King did send for him the other day to my Lady Castlemaine's, to play at cards, where he lost L50; for which I am sorry, though he says my Lord was pleased at it, and said he would be glad at any time to lose L50 for the King to send for him to play, which I do not so well like. Thence home, and after dinner to the office, where we sat till night, and then made up my papers and letters by the post, and so home to dance with Pembleton. This day we received a baskett from my sister Pall, made by her of paper, which hath a great deal of labour in it for country innocent work. After supper to bed, and going to bed received a letter from Mr. Coventry desiring my coming to him to-morrow morning, which troubled me to think what the business should be, fearing it must be some bad news in Tom Hater's business.
15th. Up betimes and walked to St. James's, where Mr. Coventry being in bed I walked in the Park, discoursing with the keeper of the Pell Mell, who was sweeping of it; who told me of what the earth is mixed that do floor the Mall, and that over all there is cockle-shells powdered, and spread to keep it fast; which, however, in dry weather, turns to dust and deads the ball. Thence to Mr. Coventry; and sitting by his bedside, he did tell me that he sent for me to discourse upon my Lord Sandwich's allowances for his several pays, and what his thoughts are concerning his demands; which he could not take the freedom to do face to face, it being not so proper as by me: and did give me a most friendly and ingenuous account of all; telling me how unsafe, at this juncture, while every man's, and his actions particularly, are descanted upon, it is either for him to put the Duke upon doing, or my Lord himself to desire anything extraordinary, 'specially the King having been so bountifull already; which the world takes notice of even to some repinings. All which he did desire me to discourse with my Lord of; which I have undertook to do. We talked also of our office in general, with which he told me that he was now-a-days nothing so satisfied as he was wont to be. I confess I told him things are ordered in that way that we must of necessity break in a little time a pieces. After done with him about these things, he told me that for Mr. Hater the Duke's word was in short that he found he had a good servant, an Anabaptist, and unless he did carry himself more to the scandal of the office, he would bear with his opinion till he heard further, which do please me very much.
Thence walked to Westminster, and there up and down
in the Hall and the Parliament House all the morning; at noon by coach
to my Lord Crew's, hearing that Lord Sandwich did dine there; where I
told him what had passed between Mr. Coventry and myself; with which he
was contented, though I could perceive not very well pleased. And I do
believe that my Lord do find some other things go against his mind in
the House; for in the motion made the other day in the House by my Lord
Bruce, that none be capable of employment but such as have been loyal
and constant to the King and Church, the General [Monk] and my Lord were
mentioned to be excepted; and my Lord Bruce did come since to my Lord,
to clear himself that he meant nothing to his prejudice, nor could it
have any such effect if he did mean it. After discourse with my Lord;
to dinner with him; there dining there my Lord Montagu of Boughton, Mr.
William Montagu his brother, the Queen's Sollicitor, &c., and a fine
dinner. Their talk about a ridiculous falling-out two days ago at my Lord
of Oxford's house, at an entertainment of his, there being there my Lord
of Albemarle, Lynsey, two of the Porters, my Lord Bellasses, and others,
where there were high words and some blows, and pulling off of perriwiggs;
till my Lord Monk took away some of their swords, and sent for some soldiers
to guard the house till the fray was ended. To such a degree of madness
the nobility of this age is come! After dinner I went up to Sir Thomas
Crew, who lies there not very well in his head, being troubled with vapours
and fits of dizziness: and there I sat talking with. him all the afternoon
from one discourse to another, the most was upon the unhappy posture of
things at this time; that the King do mind nothing but pleasures, and
hates the very sight or thoughts of business; that my Lady Castlemaine
rules him, who, he says, hath all the tricks of Aretin that are to be
practised to give pleasure. In which he is too able . . . , but what is
the unhappiness in that, as the Italian proverb says, "lazzo dritto
non vuolt consiglio." If any of the sober counsellors give him good
advice, and move him in anything that is to his good and honour, the other
part, which are his counsellers of pleasure, take him when he is with
my Lady Castlemaine, and in a humour of delight, and then persuade him
that he ought not to hear nor listen to the advice of those old dotards
or counsellors that were heretofore his enemies: when, God knows! it is
they that now-a-days do most study his honour. It seems the present favourites
now are my Lord Bristol, Duke of Buckingham, Sir H. Bennet, my Lord Ashley,
and Sir Charles Barkeley; who, among them, have cast my Lord Chancellor
upon his back, past ever getting up again; there being now little for
him to do, and he waits at Court attending to speak to the King as others
do: which I pray God may prove of good effects, for it is feared it will
be the same with my Lord Treasurer shortly. But strange to hear how my
Lord Ashley, by my Lord Bristol's means (he being brought over to the
Catholique party against the Bishopps, whom he hates to the death, and
publicly rails against them; not that he is become a Catholique, but merely
opposes the Bishopps; and yet, for aught I hear, the Bishopp of London
keeps as great with the King as ever) is got into favour, so much that,
being a man of great business and yet of pleasure, and drolling too, he,
it is thought, will be made Lord Treasurer upon the death or removal of
the good old man. My Lord Albemarle, I hear, do bear through and bustle
among them, and will not be removed from the King's good opinion and favour,
though none of the Cabinett; but yet he is envied enough. It is made very
doubtful whether the King do not intend the making of the Duke of Monmouth
legitimate;[Thomas Ross, Monmouth's tutor, put the
idea into his head that Charles II. had married his mother. The report
was sedulously spread abroad, and obtained some kind of credence, until,
in June, 1678, the king set the matter at rest by publishing a declaration,
which was entered in the Council book and registered in Chancery. The
words of the declaration are: "That to avoid any dispute which might
happen in time to come concerning the succession of the Crown, he (Charles)
did declare, in the presence of Almighty God, that he never gave, nor
made any contract of marriage, nor was married to Mrs. Barlow, alias Waters,
the Duke of Monmouth's mother, nor to any other woman whatsoever, but
to his present wife, Queen Catherine, then living."] but surely
the Commons of England will never do it, nor the Duke of York suffer it,
whose lady, I am told, is very troublesome to him by her jealousy. But
it is wonderful that Sir Charles Barkeley should be so great still, not
[only] with the King, but Duke also; who did so stiffly swear that he
had lain with her. [The conspiracy of Sir Charles
Berkeley, Lord Arran, Jermyn, Talbot, and Killigrew to traduce Anne Hyde
was peculiarly disgraceful, and the conduct of all the actors in the affair
of the marriage, from Lord Clarendon downwards, was far from creditable
(see Lister's "Life of Clarendon," ii. 68-79)]
16th. Up with my mind disturbed and with my last night's doubts upon me, for which I deserve to be beaten if not really served as I am fearful of being, especially since God knows that I do not find honesty enough in my own mind but that upon a small temptation I could be false to her, and therefore ought not to expect more justice from her, but God pardon both my sin and my folly herein. To my office and there sitting all the morning, and at noon dined at home. After dinner comes Pembleton, and I being out of humour would not see him, pretending business, but, Lord! with what jealousy did I walk up and down my chamber listening to hear whether they danced or no, which they did, notwithstanding I afterwards knew and did then believe that Ashwell was with them. So to my office awhile, and, my jealousy still reigning, I went in and, not out of any pleasure but from that only reason, did go up to them to practise, and did make an end of "La Duchesse," which I think I should, with a little pains, do very well. So broke up and saw him gone. Then Captain Cocke coming to me to speak about my seeming discourtesy to him in the business of his hemp, I went to the office with him, and there discoursed it largely and I think to his satisfaction. Then to my business, writing letters and other things till late at night, and so home to supper and bed. My mind in some better ease resolving to prevent matters for the time to come as much as I can, it being to no purpose to trouble myself for what is past, being occasioned too by my own folly.
17th (Lord's day). Up and in my chamber all the morning, preparing my great letters to my father, stating to him the perfect condition of our estate. My wife and Ashwell to church, and after dinner they to church again, and I all the afternoon making an end of my morning's work, which I did about the evening, and then to talk with my wife till after supper, and so to bed having another small falling out and myself vexed with my old fit of jealousy about her dancing-master. But I am a fool for doing it. So to bed by daylight, I having a very great cold, so as I doubt whether I shall be able to speak to-morrow at our attending the Duke, being now so hoarse.
18th. Up and after taking leave of Sir W. Batten, who is gone this day towards Portsmouth (to little purpose, God knows) upon his survey, I home and spent the morning at dancing; at noon Creed dined with us and Mr. Deane Woolwich, and so after dinner came Mr. Howe, who however had enough for his dinner, and so, having done, by coach to Westminster, she to Mrs. Clerke and I to St. James's, where the Duke being gone down by water to-day with the King I went thence to my Lord Sandwich's lodgings, where Mr. Howe and I walked a while, and going towards Whitehall through the garden Dr. Clerk and Creed called me across the bowling green, and so I went thither and after a stay went up to Mrs. Clerke who was dressing herself to go abroad with my wife. But, Lord! in what a poor condition her best chamber is, and things about her, for all the outside and show that she makes, but I found her just such a one as Mrs. Pierce, contrary to my expectation, so much that I am sick and sorry to see it. Thence for an hour Creed and I walked to White Hall, and into the Park, seeing the Queen and Maids of Honour passing through the house going to the Park. But above all, Mrs. Stuart is a fine woman, and they say now a common mistress to the King, as my Lady Castlemaine is; which is a great pity. Thence taking a coach to Mrs. Clerke's, took her, and my wife, and Ashwell, and a Frenchman, a kinsman of hers, to the Park, where we saw many fine faces, and one exceeding handsome, in a white dress over her head, with many others very beautiful. Staying there till past eight at night, I carried Mrs. Clerke and her Frenchman, who sings well, home, and thence home ourselves, talking much of what we had observed to-day of the poor household stuff of Mrs. Clerke and mere show and flutter that she makes in the world; and pleasing myself in my own house and manner of living more than ever I did by seeing how much better and more substantially I live than others do. So to supper and bed.
19th. Up pretty betimes, but yet I observe how my dancing and lying a morning or two longer than ordinary for my cold do make me hard to rise as I used to do, or look after my business as I am wont. To my chamber to make an end of my papers to my father to be sent by the post to-night, and taking copies of them, which was a great work, but I did it this morning, and so to my office, and thence with Sir John Minnes to the Tower; and by Mr. Slingsby, and Mr. Howard, Controller of the Mint, we were shown the method of making this new money, from the beginning to the end, which is so pretty that I did take a note of every part of it and set them down by themselves for my remembrance hereafter. That being done it was dinner time, and so the Controller would have us dine with him and his company, the King giving them a dinner every day. And very merry and good discourse about the business we have been upon, and after dinner went to the Assay Office and there saw the manner of assaying of gold and silver, and how silver melted down with gold do part, just being put into aqua-fortis, the silver turning into water, and the gold lying whole in the very form it was put in, mixed of gold and silver, which is a miracle; and to see no silver at all but turned into water, which they can bring again into itself out of the water.--[Not water--a solution of Silver Oxide. D.W.]--And here I was made thoroughly to understand the business of the fineness and coarseness of metals, and have put down my lessons with my other observations therein. At table among other discourse they told us of two cheats, the best I ever heard. One, of a labourer discovered to convey away the bits of silver cut out pence by swallowing them down into his belly, and so they could not find him out, though, of course, they searched all the labourers; but, having reason to doubt him, they did, by threats and promises, get him to confess, and did find L7 of it in his house at one time. The other of one that got a way of coyning money as good and passable and large as the true money is, and yet saved fifty per cent. to himself, which was by getting moulds made to stamp groats like old groats, which is done so well, and I did beg two of them which I keep for rarities, that there is not better in the world, and is as good, nay, better than those that commonly go, which was the only thing that they could find out to doubt them by, besides the number that the party do go to put off, and then coming to the Comptroller of the Mint, he could not, I say, find out any other thing to raise any doubt upon, but only their being so truly round or near it, though I should never have doubted the thing neither. He was neither hanged nor burned,--[No! They probably copied his technique. D.W.]-- the cheat was thought so ingenious, and being the first time they could ever trap him in it, and so little hurt to any man in it, the money being as good as commonly goes. Thence to the office till the evening, we sat, and then by water (taking Pembleton with us), over the water to the Halfway House, where we played at nine-pins, and there my damned jealousy took fire, he and my wife being of a side and I seeing of him take her by the hand in play, though I now believe he did [it] only in passing and sport. Thence home and being 10 o'clock was forced to land beyond the Custom House, and so walked home and to my office, and having dispatched my great letters by the post to my father, of which I keep copies to show by me and for my future understanding, I went home to supper and bed, being late. The most observables in the making of money which I observed to-day, is the steps of their doing it.
At dinner they did discourse very finely to us of the probability that there is a vast deal of money hid in the land, from this:--that in King Charles's time there was near ten millions of money coyned, besides what was then in being of King James's and Queene Elizabeth's, of which there is a good deal at this day in being. Next, that there was but L750,000 coyned of the Harp and Crosse money, [The Commonwealth coins (stamped with the cross and harp, and the inscription, "The Commonwealth of England") were called in by proclamation, September, 1660....] and of this there was L500,000 brought in upon its being called in. And from very good arguments they find that there cannot be less of it in Ireland and Scotland than L100,000; so that there is but L150,000 missing; and of that, suppose that there should be not above 650,000 still remaining, either melted down, hid, or lost, or hoarded up in England, there will then be but L100,000 left to be thought to have been transported. Now, if L750,000 in twelve years' time lost but a L100,000 in danger of being transported, then within thirty-five years' time will have lost but L3,888,880 and odd pounds; and as there is L650,000 remaining after twelve years' time in England, so after thirty-five years' time, which was within this two years, there ought in proportion to have been resting L6,111,120 or thereabouts, beside King James's and Queen Elizabeth's money. Now that most of this must be hid is evident, as they reckon, because of the dearth of money immediately upon the calling-in of the State's money, which was L500,000 that came in; and yet there was not any money to be had in this City, which they say to their own observation and knowledge was so. And therefore, though I can say nothing in it myself, I do not dispute it.
20th. Up and to my office, and anon home and to see my wife dancing with Pembleton about noon, and I to the Trinity House to dinner and after dinner home, and there met Pembleton, who I perceive has dined with my wife, which she takes no notice of, but whether that proceeds out of design, or fear to displease me I know not, but it put me into a great disorder again, that I could mind nothing but vexing, but however I continued my resolution of going down by water to Woolwich, took my wife and Ashwell; and going out met Mr. Howe come to see me, whose horse we caused to be set up, and took him with us. The tide against us, so I went ashore at Greenwich before, and did my business at the yard about putting things in order as to their proceeding to build the new yacht ordered to be built by Christopher Pett, and so to Woolwich town, where at an alehouse I found them ready to attend my coming, and so took boat again, it being cold, and I sweating, with my walk, which was very pleasant along the green come and pease, and most of the way sang, he and I, and eat some cold meat we had, and with great pleasure home, and so he took horse again, and Pembleton coming, we danced a country dance or two and so broke up and to bed, my mind restless and like to be so while she learns to dance. God forgive my folly.
21st. Up, but cannot get up so early as I was wont, nor my mind to business as it should be and used to be before this dancing. However, to my office, where most of the morning talking of Captain Cox of Chatham about his and the whole yard's difference against Mr. Barrow the storekeeper, wherein I told him my mind clearly, that he would be upheld against the design of any to ruin him, he being we all believed, but Sir W. Batten his mortal enemy, as good a servant as any the King has in the yard. After much good advice and other talk I home and danced with Pembleton, and then the barber trimmed me, and so to dinner, my wife and I having high words about her dancing to that degree that I did enter and make a vow to myself not to oppose her or say anything to dispraise or correct her therein as long as her month lasts, in pain of 2s. 6d. for every time, which, if God pleases, I will observe, for this roguish business has brought us more disquiett than anything [that] has happened a great while. After dinner to my office, where late, and then home; and Pembleton being there again, we fell to dance a country dance or two, and so to supper and bed. But being at supper my wife did say something that caused me to oppose her in, she used the word devil, which vexed me, and among other things I said I would not have her to use that word, upon which she took me up most scornfully, which, before Ashwell and the rest of the world, I know not now-a-days how to check, as I would heretofore, for less than that would have made me strike her. So that I fear without great discretion I shall go near to lose too my command over her, and nothing do it more than giving her this occasion of dancing and other pleasures, whereby her mind is taken up from her business and finds other sweets besides pleasing of me, and so makes her that she begins not at all to take pleasure in me or study to please me as heretofore. But if this month of her dancing were but out (as my first was this night, and I paid off Pembleton for myself) I shall hope with a little pains to bring her to her old wont. This day Susan that lived with me lately being out of service, and I doubt a simple wench, my wife do take her for a little time to try her at least till she goes into the country, which I am yet doubtful whether it will be best for me to send her or no, for fear of her running off in her liberty before I have brought her to her right temper again.
22nd. Up pretty betimes,
and shall, I hope, come to myself and business again, after a small playing
the truant, for I find that my interest and profit do grow daily, for
which God be praised and keep me to my duty. To my office, and anon one
tells me that Rundall, the house-carpenter of Deptford, hath sent me a
fine blackbird, which I went to see. He tells me he was offered 20s. for
him as he came along, he do so whistle. So to my office, and busy all
the morning, among other things, learning to understand the course of
the tides, and I think I do now do it. At noon Mr. Creed comes to me,
and he and I to the Exchange, where I had much discourse with several
merchants, and so home with him to dinner, and then by water to Greenwich,
and calling at the little alehouse at the end of the town to wrap a rag
about my little left toe, being new sore with walking, we walked pleasantly
to Woolwich, in our way hearing the nightingales sing. So to Woolwich
yard, and after doing many things there, among others preparing myself
for a dispute against Sir W. Pen in the business of Bowyer's, wherein
he is guilty of some corruption to the King's wrong, we walked back again
without drinking, which I never do because I would not make my coming
troublesome to any, nor would become obliged too much to any. In our going
back we were overtook by Mr. Steventon, a purser, and uncle to my clerk
Will, who told me how he was abused in the passing of his accounts by
Sir J. Minnes to the degree that I am ashamed to hear it, and resolve
to retrieve the matter if I can though the poor man has given it over.
And however am pleased enough to see that others do see his folly and
dotage as well as myself, though I believe in my mind the man in general
23rd. Waked this morning between four and five by my blackbird, which whistles as well as ever I heard any; only it is the beginning of many tunes very well, but there leaves them, and goes no further. So up and to my office, where we sat, and among other things I had a fray with Sir J. Minnes in defence of my Will in a business where the old coxcomb would have put a foot upon him, which was only in Jack Davis and in him a downright piece of knavery in procuring a double ticket and getting the wrong one paid as well as the second was to the true party. But it appeared clear enough to the board that Will was true in it. Home to dinner, and after dinner by water to the Temple, and there took my Lyra Viall book bound up with blank paper for new lessons. Thence to Greatorex's, and there seeing Sir J. Minnes and Sir W. Pen go by coach I went in to them and to White Hall; where, in the Matted Gallery, Mr. Coventry was, who told us how the Parliament have required of Sir G. Carteret and him an account what money shall be necessary to be settled upon the Navy for the ordinary charge, which they intend to report L200,000 per annum. And how to allott this we met this afternoon, and took their papers for our perusal, and so we parted. Only there was walking in the gallery some of the Barbary company, and there we saw a draught of the arms of the company, which the King is of, and so is called the Royall Company, which is, in a field argent an elephant proper, with a canton on which England and France is quartered, supported by two Moors. The crest an anchor winged, I think it is, and the motto too tedious: "Regio floret, patrocinio commercium, commercioque Regnum." Thence back by water to Greatorex's, and there he showed me his varnish which he had invented, which appears every whit as good, upon a stick which he hath done, as the Indian, though it did not do very well upon my paper ruled with musique lines, for it sunk and did not shine. Thence home by water, and after a dance with Pembleton to my office and wrote by the post to Sir W. Batten at Portsmouth to send for him up against next Wednesday, being our triall day against Field at Guildhall, in which God give us good end. So home: to supper and to bed.
24th (Lord's day). Having taken one of Mr. Holliard's pills last night it brought a stool or two this morning, and so forebore going to church this morning, but staid at home looking over my papers about Tom Trice's business, and so at noon dined, and my wife telling me that there was a pretty lady come to church with Peg Pen to-day, I against my intention had a mind to go to church to see her, and did so, and she is pretty handsome. But over against our gallery I espied Pembleton, and saw him leer upon my wife all the sermon, I taking no notice of him, and my wife upon him, and I observed she made a curtsey to him at coming out without taking notice to me at all of it, which with the consideration of her being desirous these two last Lord's days to go to church both forenoon and afternoon do really make me suspect something more than ordinary, though I am loth to think the worst, but yet it put and do still keep me at a great loss in my mind, and makes me curse the time that I consented to her dancing, and more my continuing it a second month, which was more than she desired, even after I had seen too much of her carriage with him. But I must have patience and get her into the country, or at least to make an end of her learning to dance as soon as I can. After sermon to Sir W. Pen's, with Sir J. Minnes to do a little business to answer Mr. Coventry to-night. And so home and with my wife and Ashwell into the garden walking a great while, discoursing what this pretty wench should be by her garb and deportment; with respect to Mrs. Pen she may be her woman, but only that she sat in the pew with her, which I believe he would not let her do. So home, and read to my wife a fable or two in Ogleby's AEsop, and so to supper, and then to prayers and to bed. My wife this evening discoursing of making clothes for the country, which I seem against, pleading lack of money, but I am glad of it in some respects because of getting her out of the way from this fellow, and my own liberty to look after my business more than of late I have done. So to prayers and to bed. This morning it seems Susan, who I think is distracted, or however is since she went from me taught to drink, and so gets out of doors 2 or 3 times a day without leave to the alehouse, did go before 5 o'clock to-day, making Griffin rise in his shirt to let her out to the alehouse, she said to warm herself, but her mistress, falling out with her about it, turned her out of doors this morning, and so she is gone like an idle slut. I took a pill also this night.
25th. Up, and my pill working a little I staid within most of the morning, and by and by the barber came and Sarah Kite my cozen, poor woman, came to see me and borrow 40s. of me, telling me she will pay it at Michaelmas again to me. I was glad it was no more, being indifferent whether she pays it me or no, but it will be a good excuse to lend her nor give her any more. So I did freely at first word do it, and give her a crown more freely to buy her child something, she being a good-natured and painful wretch, and one that I would do good for as far as I can that I might not be burdened. My wife was not ready, and she coming early did not see her, and I was glad of it. She gone, I up and then hear that my wife and her maid Ashwell had between them spilled the pot . . . . upon the floor and stool and God knows what, and were mighty merry making of it clean. I took no great notice, but merrily. Ashwell did by and by come to me with an errand from her mistress to desire money to buy a country suit for her against she goes as we talked last night, and so I did give her L4, and believe it will cost me the best part of 4 more to fit her out, but with peace and honour I am willing to spare anything so as to be able to keep all ends together, and my power over her undisturbed. So to my office and by and by home, where my wife and her master were dancing, and so I staid in my chamber till they had done, and sat down myself to try a little upon the Lyra viall, my hand being almost out, but easily brought to again.
So by and by to dinner, and then carried my wife and Ashwell to St. James's, and there they sat in the coach while I went in, and finding nobody there likely to meet with the Duke, but only Sir J. Minnes with my Lord Barkely (who speaks very kindly, and invites me with great compliments to come now and then and eat with him, which I am glad to hear, though I value not the thing, but it implies that my esteem do increase rather than fall), and so I staid not, but into the coach again, and taking up my wife's taylor, it raining hard, they set me down, and who should our coachman be but Carleton the Vintner, that should have had Mrs. Sarah, at Westminster, my Lord Chancellor's, and then to Paternoster Row. I staid there to speak with my Lord Sandwich, and in my staying, meeting Mr. Lewis Phillips of Brampton, he and afterwards others tell me that news came last night to Court, that the King of France is sick of the spotted fever, and that they are struck in again; and this afternoon my Lord Mandeville is gone from the King to make him a visit; which will be great news, and of great import through Europe. By and by, out comes my Lord Sandwich, and he and I talked a great while about his business, of his accounts for his pay, and among other things he told me that this day a vote hath passed that the King's grants of land to my Lord Monk and him should be made good; which pleases him very well. He also tells me that things don't go right in the House with Mr. Coventry; I suppose he means in the business of selling of places; but I am sorry for it.
Thence by coach home, where I found Pembleton, and so I up to dance with them till the evening, when there came Mr. Alsopp, the King's brewer, and Lanyon of Plymouth to see me. Mr. Alsopp tells me of a horse of his that lately, after four days' pain, voided at his fundament four stones, bigger than that I was cut of, very heavy, and in the middle of each of them either a piece of iron or wood. The King has two of them in his closett, and a third the College of Physicians to keep for rarity, and by the King's command he causes the turd of the horse to be every day searched to find more. At night to see Sir W. Batten come home this day from Portsmouth. I met with some that say that the King of France is poisoned, but how true that is is not known. So home to supper and to bed pleasant.
26th. Lay long in bed talking and pleasing myself with my wife.--[We have had several examples such as this, in the past few days diary, of Mr. Wheatley tiring of his self-imposed work of censorship. D.W.]--So up and to my office a while and then home, where I found Pembleton, and by many circumstances I am led to conclude that there is something more than ordinary between my wife and him, which do so trouble me that I know not at this very minute that I now write this almost what either I write or am doing, nor how to carry myself to my wife in it, being unwilling to speak of it to her for making of any breach and other inconveniences, nor let it pass for fear of her continuing to offend me and the matter grow worse thereby. So that I am grieved at the very heart, but I am very unwise in being so. There dined with me Mr. Creed and Captain Grove, and before dinner I had much discourse in my chamber with Mr. Deane, the builder of Woolwich, about building of ships. But nothing could get the business out of my head, I fearing that this afternoon by my wife's sending every [one] abroad and knowing that I must be at the office she has appointed him to come. This is my devilish jealousy, which I pray God may be false, but it makes a very hell in my mind, which the God of heaven remove, or I shall be very unhappy.
So to the office, where we sat awhile. By and by my mind being in great trouble I went home to see how things were, and there I found as I doubted Mr. Pembleton with my wife, and nobody else in the house, which made me almost mad, and going up to my chamber after a turn or two I went out again and called somebody on pretence of business and left him in my little room at the door (it was the Dutchman, commander of the King's pleasure boats, who having been beat by one of his men sadly, was come to the office to-day to complain) telling him I would come again to him to speak with him about his business. So in great trouble and doubt to the office, and Mr. Coventry nor Sir G. Carteret being there I made a quick end of our business and desired leave to be gone, pretending to go to the Temple, but it was home, and so up to my chamber, and as I think if they had any intention of hurt I did prevent doing anything at that time, but I continued in my chamber vexed and angry till he went away, pretending aloud, that I might hear, that he could not stay, and Mrs. Ashwell not being within they could not dance. And, Lord! to see how my jealousy wrought so far that I went softly up to see whether any of the beds were out of order or no, which I found not, but that did not content me, but I staid all the evening walking, and though anon my wife came up to me and would have spoke of business to me, yet I construed it to be but impudence, and though my heart full yet I did say nothing, being in a great doubt what to do. So at night, suffered them to go all to bed, and late put myself to bed in great discontent, and so to sleep.
27th. So I waked by 3 o'clock, my mind being troubled, and so took occasion by making water to wake my wife, and after having lain till past 4 o'clock seemed going to rise, though I did it only to see what she would do, and so going out of the bed she took hold of me and would know what ailed me, and after many kind and some cross words I began to tax her discretion in yesterday's business, but she quickly told me my own, knowing well enough that it was my old disease of jealousy, which I denied, but to no purpose. After an hour's discourse, sometimes high and sometimes kind, I found very good reason to think that her freedom with him is very great and more than was convenient, but with no evil intent, and so after awhile I caressed her and parted seeming friends, but she crying in a great discontent. So I up and by water to the Temple, and thence with Commissioner Pett to St. James's, where an hour with Mr. Coventry talking of Mr. Pett's proceedings lately in the forest of Sherwood, and thence with Pett to my Lord Ashley, Chancellor of the Exchequer; where we met the auditors about settling the business of the accounts of persons to whom money is due before the King's time in the Navy, and the clearing of their imprests for what little of their debts they have received. I find my Lord, as he is reported, a very ready, quick, and diligent person.
Thence I to Westminster Hall, where Term and Parliament make the Hall full of people; no further news yet of the King of France, whether he be dead or not. Here I met with my cozen Roger Pepys, and walked a good while with him, and among other discourse as a secret he hath committed to nobody but myself, and he tells me that his sister Claxton now resolving to give over the keeping of his house at Impington, he thinks it fit to marry again, and would have me, by the help of my uncle Wight or others, to look him out a widow between thirty and forty years old, without children, and with a fortune, which he will answer in any degree with a joynture fit for her fortune. A woman sober, and no high-flyer, as he calls it. I demanded his estate. He tells me, which he says also he hath not done to any, that his estate is not full L800 per annum, but it is L780 per annum, of which L200 is by the death of his last wife, which he will allot for a joynture for a wife, but the rest, which lies in Cambridgeshire, he is resolved to leave entire for his eldest son. I undertook to do what I can in it, and so I shall. He tells me that the King hath sent to them to hasten to make an end by midsummer, because of his going into the country; so they have set upon four bills to dispatch: the first of which is, he says, too devilish a severe act against conventicles; so beyond all moderation, that he is afeard it will ruin all: telling me that it is matter of the greatest grief to him in the world, that he should be put upon this trust of being a Parliament-man, because he says nothing is done, that he can see, out of any truth and sincerity, but mere envy and design.
Thence by water to Chelsey, all the way reading a little
book I bought of "Improvement of Trade," a pretty book and many
things useful in it. So walked to Little Chelsey, where I found my Lord
Sandwich with Mr. Becke, the master of the house, and Mr. Creed at dinner,
and I sat down with them, and very merry. After dinner (Mr. Gibbons being
come in also before dinner done) to musique, they played a good Fancy,
to which my Lord is fallen again, and says he cannot endure a merry tune,
which is a strange turn of his humour, after he has for two or three years
flung off the practice of Fancies and played only fidlers' tunes. Then
into the Great Garden up to the Banqueting House; and there by his glass
we drew in the species very pretty. Afterwards to ninepins, where I won
a shilling, Creed and I playing against my Lord and Cooke. This day there
was great thronging to Banstead Downs, upon a great horse-race and foot-race.
I am sorry I could not go thither. So home back as I came, to London Bridge,
and so home, where I find my wife in a musty humour, and tells me before
Ashwell that Pembleton had been there, and she would not have him come
in unless I was there, which I was ashamed of; but however, I had rather
it should be so than the other way. So to my office, to put things in
order there, and by and by comes Pembleton, and word is brought me from
my wife thereof that I might come home. So I sent word that I would have
her go dance, and I would come presently. So being at a great loss whether
I should appear to Pembleton or no, and what would most proclaim my jealousy
to him, I at last resolved to go home, and took Tom Hater with me, and
staid a good while in my chamber, and there took occasion to tell him
how I hear that Parliament is putting an act out against all sorts of
conventicles, ["An Act to prevent and suppresse
seditious Conventicles." It was enacted that anyone of the age of
sixteen or upwards present at an unlawful assembly or conventicle was
to incur fine or imprisonment. A conventicle was defined as an assembly
of more than five persons besides the members of a family met together
for holding worship not according to the rites of the Church of England.]
28th. Up this morning, and my wife, I know not for what cause, being against going to Chelsey to-day, it being a holy day (Ascension Day) and I at leisure, it being the first holy day almost that we have observed ever since we came to the office, we did give Ashwell leave to go by herself, and I out to several places about business. Among others to Dr. Williams, to reckon with him for physique that my wife has had for a year or two, coming to almost L4. Then to the Exchange, where I hear that the King had letters yesterday from France that the King there is in a [way] of living again, which I am glad to hear. At the coffee-house in Exchange Alley I bought a little book, "Counsell to Builders," by Sir Balth. Gerbier. It is dedicated almost to all the men of any great condition in England, so that the Epistles are more than the book itself, and both it and them not worth a turd, that I am ashamed that I bought it. Home and there found Creed, who dined with us, and after dinner by water to the Royall Theatre; but that was so full they told us we could have no room. And so to the Duke's House; and there saw "Hamlett" done, giving us fresh reason never to think enough of Betterton. Who should we see come upon the stage but Gosnell, my wife's maid? but neither spoke, danced, nor sung; which I was sorry for. But she becomes the stage very well. Thence by water home, after we had walked to and fro, backwards and forwards, six or seven times in the Temple walks, disputing whether to go by land or water. By land home, and thence by water to Halfway House, and there eat some supper we carried with us, and so walked home again, it being late we were forced to land at the dock, my wife and they, but I in a humour not willing to daub my shoes went round by the Custom House. So home, and by and by to bed, Creed lying with me in the red chamber all night.
29th. This day is kept
strictly as a holy-day, being the King's Coronation. We lay long in bed,
and it rained very hard, rain and hail, almost all the morning. By and
by Creed and I abroad, and called at several churches; and it is a wonder
to see, and by that to guess the ill temper of the City at this time,
either to religion in general, or to the King, that in some churches there
was hardly ten people in the whole church, and those poor people. So to
a coffee-house, and there in discourse hear the King of France is likely
to be well again. So home to dinner, and out by water to the Royall Theatre,
but they not acting to-day, then to the Duke's house, and there saw "The
Slighted Mayde," wherein Gosnell acted Pyramena, a great part, and
did it very well, and I believe will do it better and better, and prove
a good actor. The play is not very excellent, but is well acted, and in
general the actors, in all particulars, are better than at the other house.
Thence to the Cocke alehouse, and there having drunk, sent them with Creed
to see the German Princess,
30th. Up betimes, and Creed and I by water to Fleet Street, and my brother not being ready, he and I walked to the New Exchange, and there drank our morning draught of whay, the first I have done this year; but I perceive the lawyers come all in as they go to the Hall, and I believe it is very good. So to my brother's, and there I found my aunt James, a poor, religious, well-meaning, good soul, talking of nothing but God Almighty, and that with so much innocence that mightily pleased me. Here was a fellow that said grace so long like a prayer; I believe the fellow is a cunning fellow, and yet I by my brother's desire did give him a crown, he being in great want, and, it seems, a parson among the fanatiques, and a cozen of my poor aunt's, whose prayers she told me did do me good among the many good souls that did by my father's desires pray for me when I was cut of the stone, and which God did hear, which I also in complaisance did own; but, God forgive me, my mind was otherwise. I had a couple of lobsters and some wine for her, and so, she going out of town to-day, and being not willing to come home with me to dinner, I parted and home, where we sat at the office all the morning, and after dinner all the afternoon till night, there at my office getting up the time that I have of late lost by not following my business, but I hope now to settle my mind again very well to my business. So home, and after supper did wash my feet, and so to bed.
31st (Lord's day). Lay long in bed talking with my wife, and do plainly see that her distaste (which is beginning now in her again) against Ashwell arises from her jealousy of me and her, and my neglect of herself, which indeed is true, and I to blame; but for the time to come I will take care to remedy all. So up and to church, where I think I did see Pembleton, whatever the reason is I did not perceive him to look up towards my wife, nor she much towards him; however, I could hardly keep myself from being troubled that he was there, which is a madness not to be excused now that his coming to my house is past, and I hope all likelyhood of her having occasion to converse with him again. Home to dinner, and after dinner up and read part of the new play of "The Five Houres' Adventures," which though I have seen it twice; yet I never did admire or understand it enough, it being a play of the greatest plot that ever I expect to see, and of great vigour quite through the whole play, from beginning to the end. To church again after dinner (my wife finding herself ill . . . . did not go), and there the Scot preaching I slept most of the sermon.
This day Sir W. Batten's son's child is christened in the country, whither Sir J. Minnes, and Sir W, Batten, and Sir W. Pen are all gone. I wonder, and take it highly ill that I am not invited by the father, though I know his father and mother, with whom I am never likely to have much kindness, but rather I study the contrary, are the cause of it, and in that respect I am glad of it. Being come from church, I to make up my month's accounts, and find myself clear worth L726, for which God be praised, but yet I might have been better by L20 almost had I forborne some layings out in dancing and other things upon my wife, and going to plays and other things merely to ease my mind as to the business of the dancing-master, which I bless God is now over and I falling to my quiet of mind and business again, which I have for a fortnight neglected too much. This month the greatest news is, the height and heat that the Parliament is in, in enquiring into the revenue, which displeases the Court, and their backwardness to give the King any money. Their enquiring into the selling of places do trouble a great many among the chief, my Lord Chancellor (against whom particularly it is carried), and Mr. Coventry; for which I am sorry. The King of France was given out to be poisoned and dead; but it proves to be the measles: and he is well, or likely to be soon well again. I find myself growing in the esteem and credit that I have in the office, and I hope falling to my business again will confirm me in it, and the saving of money which God grant! So to supper, prayers, and bed. My whole family lying longer this morning than was fit, and besides Will having neglected to brush my clothes, as he ought to do, till I was ready to go to church, and not then till I bade him, I was very angry, and seeing him make little matter of it, but seeming to make it a matter indifferent whether he did it or no, I did give him a box on the ear, and had it been another day should have done more. This is the second time I ever struck him.