Up, and to my office awhile, and then down the river a little way to see vessels ready for the carrying down of 400 land soldiers to the fleete. Then back to the office for my papers, and so to St. James’s, where we did our usual attendance on the Duke. Having done with him, we all of us down to Sir W. Coventry’s chamber (where I saw his father my Lord Coventry’s picture hung up, done by Stone, who then brought it home. It is a good picture, drawn in his judge’s robes, and the great seale by him. And while it was hanging up, “This,” says Sir W. Coventry, merrily, “is the use we make of our fathers,”) to discourse about the proposition of serving us with hempe, delivered in by my Lord Brouncker as from an unknown person, though I know it to be Captain Cocke’s. My Lord and Sir William Coventry had some earnest words about it, the one promoting it for his private ends, being, as Cocke tells me himself, to have 500l. if the bargain goes on, and I am to have as much, and the other opposing it for the unseasonableness of it, not knowing at all whose the proposition is, which seems the more ingenious of the two. I sat by and said nothing, being no great friend to the proposition, though Cocke intends me a convenience by it. But what I observed most from the discourse was this of Sir W. Coventry, that he do look upon ourselves in a desperate condition. The issue of all standing upon this one point, that by the next fight, if we beat, the Dutch will certainly be content to take eggs for their money (that was his expression); or if we be beaten, we must be contented to make peace, and glad if we can have it without paying too dear for it. And withall we do rely wholly upon the Parliament’s giving us more money the next sitting, or else we are undone.
Being gone hence, I took coach to the Old Exchange, but did not go into it, but to Mr. Cade’s, the stationer, stood till the shower was over, it being a great and welcome one after so much dry weather. Here I understand that Ogleby is putting out some new fables of his owne, which will be very fine and very satyricall. Thence home to dinner, and after dinner carried my wife to her sister’s and I to Mr. Hales’s, to pay for my father’s picture, which cost me 10l. the head and 25s. the frame. Thence to Lovett’s, who has now done something towards the varnishing of single paper for the making of books, which will do, I think, very well. He did also carry me to a Knight’s chamber in Graye’s Inne, where there is a frame of his making, of counterfeite tortoise shell, which indeed is most excellently done. Then I took him with me to a picture shop to choose a print for him to vernish, but did not agree for one then.
Thence to my wife to take her up and so carried her home, and I at the office till late, and so to supper with my wife and to bed.
I did this afternoon visit my Lord Bellasses, who professes all imaginable satisfaction in me. He spoke dissatisfiedly with Creed, which I was pleased well enough with. My Lord is going down to his garrison to Hull, by the King’s command, to put it in order for fear of an invasion which course I perceive is taken upon the sea-coasts round; for we have a real apprehension of the King of France’s invading us.
live on as eggs
we must be content
to sit on change
till it fables
varnishing paper for books
Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 27 June 1666.