Possessed

Up pretty betimes, and awhile to my vyall, and then abroad to several places, to buy things for the furnishing my house and my wife’s closet, and then met my uncle Thomas, by appointment, and he and I to the Prerogative Office in Paternoster Row, and there searched and found my uncle Day’s will, end read it over and advised upon it, and his wife’s after him, and though my aunt Perkins testimony is very good, yet I fear the estate being great, and the rest that are able to inform us in the matter are all possessed of more or less of the estate, it will be hard for us ever to do anything, nor will I adventure anything till I see what part will be given to us by my uncle Thomas of all that is gained. But I had another end of putting my uncle into some doubt, that so I might keep him: yet from going into the country that he may be there against the Court at his own charge, and so I left him and his son at a loss what to do till I see them again. And so I to my Lord Crew’s, thinking to have dined there, but it was too late, and so back and called at my brother’s and Mr. Holden’s about several businesses, and went all alone to the Black Spread Eagle in Bride Lane, and there had a chopp of veale and some bread, cheese, and beer, cost me a shilling to my dinner, and so through Fleet Ally, God forgive me, out of an itch to look upon the sluts there, against which when I saw them my stomach turned, and so to Bartholomew Fayre, where I met with Mr. Pickering, and he and I to see the monkeys at the Dutch house, which is far beyond the other that my wife and I saw the other day; and thence to see the dancing on the ropes, which was very poor and tedious.
But he and I fell in discourse about my Lord Sandwich. He tells me how he is sorry for my Lord at his being at Chelsey, and that his but seeming so to my Lord without speaking one word, had put him clear out of my Lord’s favour, so as that he was fain to leave him before he went into the country, for that he was put to eat with his servants; but I could not fish from him, though I knew it, what was the matter; but am very sorry to see that my Lord hath thus much forgot his honour, but am resolved not to meddle with it.
The play being done, I stole from him and hied home, buying several things at the ironmonger’s — dogs, tongs, and shovels — for my wife’s closett and the rest of my house, and so home, and thence to my office awhile, and so home to supper and to bed. By my letters from Tangier today I hear that it grows very strong by land, and the Mole goes on. They have lately killed two hundred of the Moores, and lost about forty or fifty. I am mightily afeard of laying out too much money in goods upon my house, but it is not money flung away, though I reckon nothing money but when it is in the bank, till I have a good sum beforehand in the world.

possessed by an eagle
far beyond the sand

the fish goes on
lost in too much nothing


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 7 September 1663.

Leave a Reply