Dave Bonta

This morning comes Captain Ferrers and the German, Emanuel Luffe, who goes as one of my Lord’s footmen, though he deserves a much better preferment, to take their leave of me, and here I got the German to play upon my theorbo, which he did both below and in my wife’s chamber, who was in bed. He plays bravely. I find by him that my lute is a most excellent lute. I did give them a mince pie and a collar of brawn and some wine for their breakfast, and were very merry, and sent for Mr. Adams our neighbour to drink Mr. Shepley’s health. At last we all parted, but within a quarter of an hour after they were gone, and my wife and I were talking about buying of a fine scallop which is brought her this morning by a woman to be sold, which is to cost her 45s., in comes the German back again, all in a goare of blood, which I wondered at, and tells me that he is afeard that the Captain is killed by the watermen at Towre Stayres; so I presently went thither, and found that upon some rude pressing of the watermen to ply the Captain, he struck one of them with his cane, which they would not take, but struck him again, and then the German drew his sword and ran at one of them, but they were both soundly beaten. The Captain is, however, got to the hoy that carries him and the pages to the Downs, and I went into the alehouse at the Stayres and got them to deliver the Captain’s feathers, which one from the Captain was come to demand, and went home again, and there found my wife dressing of the German’s head, and so did [give] him a cravett for his neck, and a crown in his purse, and sent him away again. Then came Mr. Moore, and he and I to Westminster and to Worcester House to see Mr. Montagu before he goes away (this night), but could not see him, nor do I think he has a mind to see us for fear of our demanding of money of him for anything. So back to Whitehall, and eat a bit of meat at Wilkinson’s, and then to the Privy Seal, and sealed there the first time this month; and, among other things that passed, there was a patent for Roger Palmer (Madam Palmer’s husband) to be Earl of Castlemaine and Baron of Limbricke in Ireland; but the honour is tied up to the males got of the body of this wife, the Lady Barbary: the reason whereof every body knows. That done, by water to the office, when I found Sir W. Pen had been alone all the night and was just rose, and so I to him, and with him I found Captain Holmes, who had wrote his case, and gives me a copy, as he hath many among his friends, and presented the same to the King and Council. Which I shall make use of in my attempt of writing something concerning the business of striking sail, which I am now about. But he do cry out against Sir John Minnes, as the veriest knave and rogue and coward in the world, which I was glad to hear, because he has given out bad words concerning my Lord, though I am sorry it is so. Here Captain Cox then came in, and he and I staid a good while and so good night. Home and wrote by the post to my father, and so to bed.

My foot is a fine scallop,
a cane beaten into feathers,
my head for a night.

I see it eat a bit of land,
tied to a body
of water.

Alone with a copy,
I make it cry out
against the world.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 7 December 1661.

This morning I went early to the Paynter’s and there sat for my picture the fourth time, but it do not yet please me, which do much trouble me. Thence to the Treasury Office, where I found Sir W. Batten come before me, and there we sat to pay off the St. George. By and by came Sir W. Pen, and he and I stayed while Sir W. Batten went home to dinner, and then he came again, and Sir W. Pen and I went and dined at my house, and had two mince pies sent thither by our order from the messenger Slater, that had dressed some victuals for us, and so we were very merry, and after dinner rode out in his coach, he to Whitehall, and my wife and I to the Opera, and saw “Hamlett” well performed. Thence to the Temple and Mrs. Turner’s (who continues still very ill), and so home and to bed.

I paint for pay
and stay to dinner,
my house a mess.
Dress me in white
and I turn very ill.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 5 December 1661.

To the Paynter’s and sat and had more of my picture done; but it do not please me, for I fear it will not be like me. At noon from thence to the Wardrobe, where dinner not being ready Mr. Moore and I to the Temple about my little business at Mr. Turner’s, and so back again, and dinner being half done I went in to my Lady, where my Lady Wright was at dinner with her, and all our talk about the great happiness that my Lady Wright says there is in being in the fashion and in variety of fashions, in scorn of others that are not so, as citizens’ wives and country gentlewomen, which though it did displease me enough, yet I said nothing to it. Thence by water to the office through bridge, being carried by him in oars that the other day rowed in a scull faster than my oars to the Towre, and I did give him 6d. At the office all the afternoon, and at night home to read in “Mare Clausum” till bedtime, and so to bed, but had a very bad night by dreams of my wife’s riding with me and her horse throwing her and breaking her leg, and then I dreamt that I had one of my testicles swelled, and I in such pain that I waked with it, and had a great deal of pain there a very great while till I fell asleep again, and such apprehension I had of it that when I rose and trussed up myself thinking that it had been no dream. Till in the daytime I found myself very well at ease, and remembered that I did dream so, and that Mr. Creed was with me, and that I did complain to him of it, and he said he had the same pain in his left that I had in my right testicle which pleased me much to remember.

Like noon in a temple,
our happiness is
a fashion, in scorn of others
that are not us.
I dream of a wing breaking,
dream of a rose
trussed up in
my left testicle.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 3 December 1661.

To Savill the painter’s, but he not being well I could do nothing there, and so I returned home, and in my way met Mr. Moore and took him with me home; where we staid and talked all the morning, and he dined with me, and after dinner went away to the Privy Seal, this being our first day this month. By and by called on by Mr. Sanchy and his mistress, and with them by coach to the Opera, to seeThe Mad Lover,” but not much pleased with the play. That done home all to my house, where they staid and supped and were merry, and at last late bid good night and so we to bed.

To paint the sea is to see
the mad lover,
not the house where we
at last bid good night.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 2 December 1661.

(Lord’s day). In the morning at church and heard Mr. Mills. At home dined and with me by appointment Mr. Sanchy, who should have brought his mistress, Mrs. Mary Archer, of Cambridge, but she could not come, but we had a good dinner for him. And so in the afternoon my wife went to church, and he and I stayed at home and drank and talked, and he stayed with me till night and supped with me, when I expected to have seen Jack Cole and Lem. Wagstaffe, but they did not come.
We this day cut a brave collar of brawn from Winchcombe which proves very good, and also opened the glass of girkins which Captain Cocke did give my wife the other day, which are rare things.
So at night to bed.
There hath lately been great clapping up of some old statesmen, such as Ireton, Moyer, and others, and they say, upon a great plot, but I believe no such thing; but it is but justice that they should be served as they served the poor Cavaliers; and I believe it will oftentimes be so as long as I live, whether there be cause or no.
This evening my brother Tom was with me, and I did talk again to him about Mr. Townsend’s daughter, and I do intend to put the business in hand. I pray God give a good end to it.

In the morning mill,
who but the brawn and glass

captain clapping?
They serve the poor

a long, no-brother talk
about business and God.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 1 December 1661.

In the morning to the Temple, Mr. Philips and Dr. Williams about my several law matters, and so to the Wardrobe to dinner, and after dinner stole away, my Lady not dining out of her chamber, and so home and then to the office all the afternoon, and that being done Sir W. Batten and I and Captain Cock got a bottle of sack into the office, and there we sat late and drank and talked, and so home and to bed.
I am this day in very good health, only got a little cold. The Parliament has sat a pretty while. The old condemned judges of the late King have been brought before the Parliament, and like to be hanged. I am deep in Chancery against Tom Trice, God give a good issue; and myself under great trouble for my late great expending of money vainly, which God stop for the future. This is the last day for the old State’s coyne to pass in common payments, but they say it is to pass in publique payments to the King three months still.

The law stole my home—
that batten of here and pretty
condemned
like a chance god
or the last state’s coin.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 30 November 1661.

I lay long in bed, till Sir Williams both sent me word that we were to wait upon the Duke of York to-day; and that they would have me to meet them at Westminster Hall, at noon: so I rose and went thither; and there I understand that they are gone to Mr. Coventry’s lodgings, in the Old Palace Yard, to dinner (the first time I knew he had any); and there I met them two and Sir G. Carteret, and had a very fine dinner, and good welcome, and discourse; and so, by water, after dinner to White Hall to the Duke, who met us in his closet; and there he did discourse to us the business of Holmes, and did desire of us to know what hath been the common practice about making of forrayne ships to strike sail to us, which they did all do as much as they could; but I could say nothing to it, which I was sorry for. So indeed I was forced to study a lie, and so after we were gone from the Duke, I told Mr. Coventry that I had heard Mr. Selden often say, that he could prove that in Henry the 7th’s time, he did give commission to his captains to make the King of Denmark’s ships to strike to him in the Baltique.
From thence Sir W. Pen and I to the Theatre, but it was so full that we could hardly get any room, so he went up to one of the boxes, and I into the 18d. places, and there saw “Love at first sight,” a play of Mr. Killigrew’s, and the first time that it hath been acted since before the troubles, and great expectation there was, but I found the play to be a poor thing, and so I perceive every body else do. So home, calling at Paul’s Churchyard for a “Mare Clausum,” having it in my mind to write a little matter, what I can gather, about the business of striking sayle, and present it to the Duke, which I now think will be a good way to make myself known. So home and to bed.

A long word: wait.
I understand water
but not ships

or the poor body,
having it in mind to sail
my own bed.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 29 November 1661.