Bookworm

Up and to the office, where after a while sitting, I left the board upon pretence of serious business, and by coach to Paul’s School, where I heard some good speeches of the boys that were to be elected this year. Thence by and by with Mr. Pullen and Barnes (a great Non-Conformist) with several others of my old acquaintance to the Nag’s Head Taverne, and there did give them a bottle of sacke, and away again and I to the School, and up to hear the upper form examined; and there was kept by very many of the Mercers, Clutterbucke, a Barker, Harrington, and others; and with great respect used by them all, and had a noble dinner. Here they tell me, that in Dr. Colett’s will he says that he would have a Master found for the School that hath good skill in Latin, and (if it could be) one that had some knowledge of the Greeke; so little was Greeke known here at that time. Dr. Wilkins and one Mr. Smallwood, Posers. After great pleasure there, and specially to Mr. Crumlum, so often to tell of my being a benefactor to the School, I to my bookseller’s and there spent an hour looking over Theatrum Urbium and Flandria illustrata, with excellent cuts, with great content. So homeward, and called at my little milliner’s, where I chatted with her, her husband out of the way, and a mad merry slut she is. So home to the office, and by and by comes my wife home from the burial of Captain Grove’s wife at Wapping (she telling me a story how her mayd Jane going into the boat did fall down and show her arse in the boat), and alone comes my uncle Wight and Mr. Maes with the state of their case, which he told me very discreetly, and I believe is a very hard one, and so after drinking a bottle of ale or two they gone, and I a little more to the office, and so home to prayers and to bed.
This evening I made an end of my letter to Creed about his pieces of eight, and sent it away to him. I pray God give good end to it to bring me some money, and that duly as from him.

my old clutter of books
strata from the burial of a grove

telling me how to fall
and in which hard bed


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 4 February 1663/64.

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