Astrology

Called up, as I had appointed, by H. Russell, between two and three o’clock, and I and my boy Tom by water with a gally down to the Hope, it being a fine starry night. Got thither by eight o’clock, and there, as expected, found the Charles, her mainmast setting. Commissioner Pett aboard. I up and down to see the ship I was so well acquainted with, and a great worke it is, the setting so great a mast. Thence the Commissioner and I on board Sir G. Ascue, in the Henery, who lacks men mightily, which makes me think that there is more believed to be in a man that hath heretofore been employed than truly there is; for one would never have thought, a month ago, that he would have wanted 1000 men at his heels. Nor do I think he hath much of a seaman in him: for he told me, says he, “Heretofore, we used to find our ships clear and ready, everything to our hands in the Downes. Now I come, and must look to see things done like a slave, things that I never minded, nor cannot look after.” And by his discourse I find that he hath not minded anything in her at all.
Thence not staying, the wind blowing hard, I made use of the Jemmy yacht and returned to the Tower in her, my boy being a very droll boy and good company. Home and eat something, and then shifted myself, and to White Hall, and there the King being in his Cabinet Council (I desiring to speak with Sir G. Carteret), I was called in, and demanded by the King himself many questions, to which I did give him full answers. There were at this Council my Lord Chancellor, Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Treasurer, the two Secretarys, and Sir G. Carteret.
Not a little contented at this chance of being made known to these persons, and called often by my name by the King, I to Mr. Pierces to take leave of him, but he not within, but saw her and made very little stay, but straight home to my office, where I did business, and then to supper and to bed.
The Duke of York is this day gone away to Portsmouth.

a star is more believed in than the sea
like a slave that cannot answer

we bury it in a known name
made of ice in the mouth


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 9 November 1664.

Leave a Reply