Careless lovers

Up and to White Hall to a Committee for Tangier, where his Royal Highness was. Our great design was to state to them the true condition of this Committee for want of money, the want whereof was so great as to need some sudden help, and it was with some content resolved to see it supplied and means proposed towards the doing of it.
At this Committee, unknown to me, comes my Lord of Sandwich, who, it seems, come to towne last night. After the Committee was up, my Lord Sandwich did take me aside, and we walked an hour alone together in the robe-chamber, the door shut, telling me how much the Duke and Mr. Coventry did, both in the fleete and here, make of him, and that in some opposition to the Prince; and as a more private message, he told me that he hath been with them both when they have made sport of the Prince and laughed at him: yet that all the discourse of the towne, and the printed relation, should not give him one word of honour my Lord thinks mighty strange; he assuring me, that though by accident the Prince was in the van the beginning of the fight for the first pass, yet all the rest of the day my Lord was in the van, and continued so. That notwithstanding all this noise of the Prince, he had hardly a shot in his side nor a man killed, whereas he hath above 30 in her hull, and not one mast whole nor yard; but the most battered ship of the fleet, and lost most men, saving Captain Smith of “The Mary.” That the most the Duke did was almost out of gun-shot; but that, indeed, the Duke did come up to my Lord’s rescue after he had a great while fought with four of them. How poorly Sir John Lawson performed, notwithstanding all that was said of him; and how his ship turned out of the way, while Sir J. Lawson himself was upon the deck, to the endangering of the whole fleete. It therefore troubles my Lord that Mr. Coventry should not mention a word of him in his relation. I did, in answer, offer that I was sure the relation was not compiled by Mr. Coventry, but by L’Estrange, out of several letters, as I could witness; and that Mr. Coventry’s letter that he did give the Duke of Albemarle did give him as much right as the Prince, for I myself read it first and then copied it out, which I promised to show my Lord, with which he was somewhat satisfied.
From that discourse my Lord did begin to tell me how much he was concerned to dispose of his children, and would have my advice and help; and propounded to match my Lady Jemimah to Sir G. Carteret’s eldest son, which I approved of, and did undertake the speaking with him about it as from myself, which my Lord liked. So parted, with my head full of care about this business.
Thence home to the ‘Change, and so to dinner, and thence by coach to Mr. Povy’s. Thence by appointment with him and Creed to one Mr. Finch; one of the Commissioners for the Excise, to be informed about some things of the Excise, in order to our settling matters therein better for us for our Tangier business. I find him a very discreet, grave person. Thence well satisfied I and Creed to Mr. Fox at White Hall to speak with him about the same matter, and having some pretty satisfaction from him also, he and I took boat and to Fox Hall, where we spent two or three hours talking of several matters very soberly and contentfully to me, which, with the ayre and pleasure of the garden, was a great refreshment to me, and, ‘methinks, that which we ought to joy ourselves in. Thence back to White Hall, where we parted, and I to find my Lord to receive his farther direction about his proposal this morning. Wherein I did that I should first by another hand break my intentions to Sir G. Carteret. I pitched upon Dr. Clerke, which my Lord liked, and so I endeavoured but in vain to find him out to-night. So home by hackney-coach, which is become a very dangerous passage now-a-days, the sickness increasing mightily, and to bed.

our want was so sudden
we laughed at it
how poorly formed it was
a ship turned out of relation
to what satisfied
like an appointment
at the grave of a clerk


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 23 June 1665.

Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

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