Wanderlust

Waked this morning by 4 o’clock by my wife to call the mayds to their wash, and what through my sleeping so long last night and vexation for the lazy sluts lying so long again and their great wash, neither my wife nor I could sleep one winke after that time till day, and then I rose and by coach (taking Captain Grove with me and three bottles of Tent, which I sent to Mrs. Lane by my promise on Saturday night last) to White Hall, and there with the rest of our company to the Duke and did our business, and thence to the Tennis Court till noon, and there saw several great matches played, and so by invitation to St. James’s; where, at Mr. Coventry’s chamber, I dined with my Lord Barkeley, Sir G. Carteret, Sir Edward Turner, Sir Ellis Layton, and one Mr. Seymour, a fine gentleman; were admirable good discourse of all sorts, pleasant and serious.
Thence after dinner to White Hall, where the Duke being busy at the Guinny business, the Duke of Albemarle, Sir W. Rider, Povy, Sir J. Lawson and I to the Duke of Albemarle’s lodgings, and there did some business, and so to the Court again, and I to the Duke of York’s lodgings, where the Guinny company are choosing their assistants for the next year by ballotting. Thence by coach with Sir J. Robinson, Lieutenant of the Tower, he set me down at Cornhill, but, Lord! the simple discourse that all the way we had, he magnifying his great undertakings and cares that have been upon him for these last two years, and how he commanded the city to the content of all parties, when the loggerhead knows nothing almost that is sense.
Thence to the Coffee-house, whither comes Sir W. Petty and Captain Grant, and we fell in talke (besides a young gentleman, I suppose a merchant, his name Mr. Hill, that has travelled and I perceive is a master in most sorts of musique and other things) of musique; the universal character; art of memory; Granger’s counterfeiting of hands and other most excellent discourses to my great content, having not been in so good company a great while, and had I time I should covet the acquaintance of that Mr. Hill.
This morning I stood by the King arguing with a pretty Quaker woman, that delivered to him a desire of hers in writing. The King showed her Sir J. Minnes, as a man the fittest for her quaking religion, saying that his beard was the stiffest thing about him, and again merrily said, looking upon the length of her paper, that if all she desired was of that length she might lose her desires; she modestly saying nothing till he begun seriously to discourse with her, arguing the truth of his spirit against hers; she replying still with these words, “O King!” and thou’d him all along.
The general talke of the towne still is of Collonell Turner, about the robbery; who, it is thought, will be hanged.
I heard the Duke of York tell to-night, how letters are come that fifteen are condemned for the late plot by the judges at York; and, among others, Captain Oates, against whom it was proved that he drew his sword at his going out, and flinging away the scabbard, said that he would either return victor or be hanged.
So home, where I found the house full of the washing and my wife mighty angry about Will’s being here to-day talking with her mayds, which she overheard, idling of their time, and he telling what a good mayd my old Jane was, and that she would never have her like again. At which I was angry, and after directing her to beat at least the little girl, I went to the office and there reproved Will, who told me that he went thither by my wife’s order, she having commanded him to come thither on Monday morning. Now God forgive me! how apt I am to be jealous of her as to this fellow, and that she must needs take this time, when she knows I must be gone out to the Duke, though methinks had she that mind she would never think it discretion to tell me this story of him, to let me know that he was there, much less to make me offended with him, to forbid him coming again. But this cursed humour I cannot cool in myself by all the reason I have, which God forgive me for, and convince me of the folly of it, and the disquiet it brings me.
So home, where, God be thanked, when I came to speak to my wife my trouble of mind soon vanished, and to bed. The house foul with the washing and quite out of order against to-morrow’s dinner.

the tower knows nothing of the hill

travel is a sort of music
counterfeiting hands and discourses

not fit for paper that still word away

like a man gone out
of his quiet mind


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 11 January 1663/64.

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