Confessional pitfall

(Lord’s day). Up, and to church with my wife. A dull sermon of Mr. Mills, and then home, without strangers to dinner, and then my wife to read, and I to the office, enter my journall to this day, and so home with great content that it is done, but with sorrow to my eyes. Then home, and got my wife to read to me out of Fuller’s Church History, when by and by comes Captain Cocke, who sat with me all the evening, talking, and I find by him, as by all others, that we are like to expect great confusions, and most of our discourse was the same, and did agree with that the last night, particularly that about the difference between the King and the Duke of York which is like to be. He tells me that he hears that Sir W. Coventry was, a little before the Duke of York fell sick, with the Duke of York in his closet, and fell on his knees, and begged his pardon for what he hath done to my Lord Chancellor; but this I dare not soon believe. But he tells me another thing, which he says he had from the person himself who spoke with the Duke of Buckingham, who, he says, is a very sober and worthy man, that he did lately speak with the Duke of Buckingham about his greatness now with the King, and told him- “But, sir, these things that the King do now, in suffering the Parliament to do all this, you know are not fit for the King to suffer, and you know how often you have said to me that the King was a weak man, and unable to govern, but to be governed, and that you could command him as you listed; why do you suffer him to go on in these things?” — “Why,” says the Duke of Buckingham, “I do suffer him to do this, that I may hereafter the better command him.” This he swears to me the person himself to whom the Duke of Buckingham said this did tell it him, and is a man of worth, understanding, and credit. He told me one odd passage by the Duke of Albemarle, speaking how hasty a man he is, and how for certain he would have killed Sir W. Coventry, had he met him in a little time after his shewing his letter in the House. He told me that a certain lady, whom he knows, did tell him that, she being certainly informed that some of the Duke of Albemarle’s family did say that the Earl of Torrington was a bastard, [she] did think herself concerned to tell the Duke of Albemarle of it, and did first tell the Duchesse, and was going to tell the old man, when the Duchesse pulled her back by the sleeve, and hindered her, swearing to her that if he should hear it, he would certainly kill the servant that should be found to have said it, and therefore prayed her to hold her peace. One thing more he told me, which is, that Garraway is come to town, and is thinking how to bring the House to mind the public state of the nation and to put off these particular piques against man and man, and that he propounding this to Sir W. Coventry, Sir W. Coventry did give no encouragement to it: which he says is that by their running after other men he may escape. But I do believe this is not true neither. But however I am glad that Garraway is here, and that he do begin to think of the public condition in reference to our neighbours that we are in, and in reference to ourselves, whereof I am mightily afeard of trouble. So to supper, and he gone and we to bed.

I enter my journal
on my knees

it says you are not
fit to suffer

you know how often
you have killed time

by running after other
true selves

Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 17 November 1667.

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