Evasions

Up, and to the office, and at noon home to dinner, and then with my wife and Barker by coach, and left them at Charing Cross, and I to St. James’s, and there found Sir W. Coventry alone in his chamber, and sat and talked with him more than I have done a great while of several things of the Navy, how our debts and wants do unfit us for doing any thing. He tells me he hears stories of Commissioner Pett, of selling timber to the Navy under other names, which I told him I believe is true, and did give him an instance. He told me also how his clerk Floyd he hath put away for his common idlenesse and ill company, and particularly that yesterday he was found not able to come and attend him, by being run into the arme in a squabble, though he pretends it was done in the streets by strangers, at nine at night, by the Maypole in the Strand. Sir W. Coventry did write to me this morning to recommend him another, which I could find in my heart to do W. Hewer for his good; but do believe he will not part with me, nor have I any mind to let him go. I would my brother were fit for it, I would adventure him there. He insists upon an unmarried man, that can write well, and hath French enough to transcribe it only from a copy, and may write shorthand, if it may be. Thence with him to my Lord Chancellor at Clarendon House, to a Committee for Tangier, where several things spoke of and proceeded on, and particularly sending Commissioners thither before the new Governor goes, which I think will signify as much good as any thing else that hath been done about the place, which is none at all. I did again tell them the badness of their credit by the time their tallies took before they become payable, and their spending more than their fund. They seem well satisfied with what I said, and I am glad that I may be remembered that I do tell them the case plain; but it troubled me that I see them hot upon it, that the Governor shall not be paymaster, which will force me either to the providing one there to do it (which I will never undertake), or leave the employment, which I had rather do.
Mightily pleased with the noblenesse of this house, and the brave furniture and pictures, which indeed is very noble, and, being broke up, I with Sir G. Carteret in his coach into Hide Park, to discourse of things, and spent an hour in this manner with great pleasure, telling me all his concernments, and how he is gone through with the purchase for my Lady Jemimah and her husband; how the Treasury is like to come into the hands of a Committee; but that not that, nor anything else, will do our business, unless the King himself will mind his business, and how his servants do execute their parts; he do fear an utter ruin in the state, and that in a little time, if the King do not mind his business soon; that the King is very kind to him, and to my Lord Sandwich, and that he doubts not but at his coming home, which he expects about Michaelmas, he will be very well received. But it is pretty strange how he began again the business of the intention of a marriage of my Lord Hinchingbroke to a daughter of my Lord Burlington’s to my Lord Chancellor, which he now tells me as a great secret, when he told it me the last Sunday but one; but it may be the poor man hath forgot, and I do believe he do make it a secret, he telling me that he has not told it to any but myself, end this day to his daughter my Lady Jemimah, who looks to lie down about two months hence. After all this discourse we turned back and to White Hall, where we parted, and I took up my wife at Unthanke’s, and so home, and in our street, at the Three Tuns’ Tavern door, I find a great hubbub; and what was it but two brothers have fallen out, and one killed the other. And who should they be but the two Fieldings; one whereof, Bazill, was page to my Lady Sandwich; and he hath killed the other, himself being very drunk, and so is sent to Newgate. I to the office and did as much business as my eyes would let me, and so home to supper and to bed.

I have wants
under other names

I believe in idleness
I attend to strangers

I write to become satisfied
with what I said

I take pictures to hide
the hubbub in my eyes


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 9 May 1667.

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