Woke

Up betimes, about 4 o’clock, waked by a damned noise between a sow gelder and a cow and a dog, nobody after we were up being able to tell us what it was. After being ready we took coach, and, being very sleepy, droused most part of the way to Gravesend, and there ’light, and down to the new batterys, which are like to be very fine, and there did hear a plain fellow cry out upon the folly of the King’s officers above, to spend so much money in works at Woolwich and Deptford, and sinking of good ships loaden with goods, when, if half the charge had been laid out here, it would have secured all that, and this place too, before now. And I think it is not only true in this, but that the best of the actions of us all are so silly, that the meanest people begin to see through them, and contemn them. Besides, says he, they spoil the river by it. Then informed ourselves where we might have some creame, and they guided us to one Goody Best’s, a little out of the towne towards London road, and thither we went with the coach, and find it a mighty clean, plain house, and had a dish of very good creame to our liking, and so away presently very merry, and fell to reading of the several Advices to a Painter, which made us good sport, and indeed are very witty, and Creed did also repeat to me some of the substance of letters of old Burleigh in Queen Elizabeth’s time, which he hath of late read in the printed Cabbala, which is a very fine style at this day and fit to be imitated. With this, and talking and laughing at the folly of our masters in the management of things at this day, we got home by noon, where all well, and then to dinner, and after dinner both of us laid down upon the couch and chairs and to sleep, which I did for an hour or two, and then to the office, where I am sorry to hear that Sir J. Minnes is likely to die this night, or to-morrow, I forgot to set down that we met this morning upon the road with Mrs. Williams going down to my Lord Bruncker; we bowed without speaking one to another, but I am ashamed at the folly of the man to have her down at this serious busy time, when the town and country is full of people and full of censure, and against him particularly. At Sir W. Batten’s my Lady tells me that she hears for certain that my Lord’s maid of his lodging here do give out that Mrs. Williams hath been fain of late to sell her best clothes and jewels to get a little money upon, which is a sad condition. Thence to the office, and did write to my Lord Bruncker to give me a little satisfaction about the certainty of the chain’s being broke, which I begin to doubt, and the more from Sir W. Pen’s discourse. It is worth while to read my letter to him entered in my letter book. Home in the evening to supper, and so pretty betimes, about 10 o’clock, to bed, and slept well. This day letters are come that my sister is very ill.

waked by a noise of the light

like when half the people
begin to see through
the folly of our masters

and we bow without speaking
one to another


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 1 July 1667.

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