Disorderly conduct

Up betimes, and my wife up and about the house, Susan beginning to have her drunken tricks, and put us in mind of her old faults and folly and distractednesse, which we had forgot, so that I became mightily troubled with her. This morning came my joyners to new lay the floors, and begun with the dining room.
I out and see my viall again, and it is very well, and to Mr. Hollyard, and took some pills of him and a note under his hand to drink wine with my beere, without which I was obliged, by my private vowe, to drink none a good while, and have strictly observed it, and by my drinking of small beere and not eating, I am so mightily troubled with wind, that I know not what to do almost.
Thence to White Hall, and there met Mr. Moore, and fell a-talking about my Lord’s folly at Chelsey, and it was our discourse by water to London and to the great coffee house against the Exchange, where we sat a good while talking; and I find that my lord is wholly given up to this wench, who it seems has been reputed a common strumpett. I have little encouragement from Mr. Moore to meddle with it to tell my Lord, for fear it may do him no good, but me hurt.
Thence homewards, taking leave of him, and met Tom Marsh, my old acquaintance at Westminster, who talks mightily of the honour of his place, being Clerke Assistant to the Clerke of the House of Commons, and I take him to be a coxcombe, and so did give him half a pint of wine, but drink none myself, and so got shut of him. So home, and there found my wife almost mad with Susan’s tricks, so as she is forced to let her go and leave the house all in dirt and the clothes all wet, and gets Goody Taylour to do the business for her till another comes. Here came Will Howe, and he and I alone in my chamber talking of my Lord, who drives me out of love to my Lord to tell my Lord of the matter we discoursed of, which tend so much to the ruin of his state, and so I resolved to take a good heart and do whatever comes of it. He gone, we sat down and eat a bit of dinner fetched from the cooke’s, and so up again and to my joyners, who will make my floors very handsome. By and by comes in Pembleton, which begun to make me sweat, but I did give him so little countenance, and declared at one word against dancing any more, and bid him a short (God be with you) myself, and so he took as short a leave of my wife and so went away, and I think without any time of receiving any great satisfaction from my wife or invitation to come again.
To my office till it was dark doing business, and so home by candle light to make up my accounts for my Lord and Mr. Moore. By and by comes Mr. Moore to me, and staid a good while with me making up his accounts and mine, and we did not come to any end therein for want of his papers, and so put it off to another time.
He supped with me in all my dirt and disorder, and so went away and we to bed.
I discoursed with him a great while about my speaking to my Lord of his business, and I apprehend from him that it is likely to prove perhaps of bad effect to me and no good to him, and therefore I shall even let it alone and let God do his will, at least till my Lord is in the country, and then we shall see whether he resolves to come to Chelsey again or no, and so order the stopping of him therein if we can.

drunk and distracted
I forgot my gun
and took some pills
out of love of ruin
dancing by candle light
in all my dirt and disorder
like a bad god


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 19 August 1663.

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