Up, and did digest into a method all I could say in our defence, in case there should be occasion, for I hear he will have counsel to plead for him in the Court, and so about nine o’clock to the court at the Lordshipp where the jury was called; and there being vacancies, they would have had my father, in respect to him, [to] have been one of the Homage, but he thought fit to refuse it, he not knowing enough the customs of the town. They being sworn and the charge given them, they fell to our business, finding the heir-at-law to be my uncle Thomas; but Sir Robert [Bernard] did tell them that he had seen how the estate was devised to my father by my uncle’s will, according to the custom of the manour, which they would have denied, first, that it was not according to the custom of the manour, proposing some difficulty about the half-acre of land which is given the heir-at-law according to custom, which did put me into great fear lest it might not be in my uncle’s possession at his death, but mortgaged with other to T. Trice (who was there, and was with my good will admitted to Taylor’s house mortgaged to him if not being worth the money for which it was mortgaged, which I perceive he now, although he lately bragged the contrary, yet is now sensible of, and would have us to redeem it with money, and he would now resurrender it to us rather than the heir-at-law) or else that it was part of Goody Gorum’s in which she has a life, and so might not be capable of being according to the custom given to the heir-at-law, but Will Stanks tells me we are sure enough against all that.
Then they fell to talk of Piggott’s land mortgaged to my uncle, but he never admitted to it, which they now as heir would have admitted to. But the steward, as he promised me, did find pretensions very kindly and readily to put off their admittance, by which I find they are much defeated, and if ever, I hope, will now listen to a treaty and agreement with us, at our meeting at London. So they took their leaves of the steward and Court, and went away, and by and by, after other business many brought in, they broke up to dinner. So my father and I home with great content to dinner; my mind now as full against the afternoon business, which we sat upon after dinner at the Court, and did sue out a recovery, and cut off the intayle; and my brothers there, to join therein. And my father and I admitted to all the lands; he for life, and I for myself and my heirs in reversion, and then did surrender according to bargain to Prior, Greene, and Shepheard the three cottages with their appurtenances that they have bought of us, and that being done and taken leave of the steward, I did with most compleat joy of mind go from the Court with my father home, and in a quarter of an hour did get on horseback, with my brother Tom, Cooke, and Will, all mounted, and without eating or drinking, take leave of father, mother, Pall, to whom I did give 10s., but have shown no kindness since I come, for I find her so very ill-natured that I cannot love her, and she so cruel a hypocrite that she can cry when she pleases, and John and I away, calling in at Hinchingbroke, and taking leave in three words of my Lady, and the young ladies; and so by moonlight most bravely all the way to Cambridge, with great pleasure, whither we come at about nine o’clock, and took up at the Bear, but the house being full of guests we had very ill lodging, which troubled me, but had a supper, and my mind at good ease, and so to bed. Will in another bed in my chamber.
enough land to admit
a quarter moon
Erasure haiku derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 14 October 1662.