Doctrine of signatures

Up and to my office, where we met and sat all the morning, only Mr. Coventry, which I think is the first or second time he has missed since he came to the office, was forced to be absent. So home to dinner, my wife and I upon a couple of ducks, and then by coach to the Temple, where my uncle Thomas, and his sons both, and I, did meet at my cozen Roger’s and there sign and seal to an agreement. Wherein I was displeased at nothing but my cozen Roger’s insisting upon my being obliged to settle upon them as the will do all my uncle’s estate that he has left, without power of selling any for the payment of debts, but I would not yield to it without leave of selling, my Lord Sandwich himself and my cozen Thos. Pepys being judges of the necessity thereof, which was done. One thing more that troubles me was my being forced to promise to give half of what personal estate could be found more than 372l., which I reported to them, which though I do not know it to be less than what we really have found, yet he would have been glad to have been at liberty for that, but at last I did agree to it under my own handwriting on the backside of the report I did make and did give them of the estate, and have taken a copy of it upon the backside of one that I have. All being done I took the father and his son Thos. home by coach, and did pay them 30l., the arrears of the father’s annuity, and with great seeming love parted, and I presently to bed, my head akeing mightily with the hot dispute I did hold with my cozen Roger and them in the business.

ink is the first
forced temple

I sign and seal an agreement
nothing is as personal as handwriting

I make the state a copy
with great seeming art


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 14 February 1662/63.

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