Up, all the morning at the office, and then home to dinner, where dined Mr. Clerke, solicitor, with me, to discourse about my Tangier accounts, which I would fain make up, but I have not time. After dinner, by coach as far as the Temple, and there saw a new book, in folio, of all that suffered for the King in the late times, which I will buy, it seems well writ, and then back to the Old Exchange, and there at my goldsmith’s bought a basin for my wife to give the Parson’s child, to which the other day she was godmother. It cost me; 10l. 14s. besides graving, which I do with the cypher of the name, Daniel Mills, and so home to the office, and then home to supper and hear my wife read, and then to bed.
This afternoon, after dinner, come to me Mr. Warren, and there did tell me that he come to pay his debt to me for the kindness I did him in getting his last ship out, which I must also remember was a service to the King, though I did not tell him so, as appeared by my advising with the board, and there writing to Sir W. Coventry to get the pass for the ship to go for it to Genoa. Now that which he had promised me for the courtesy was I take it 100 pieces or more, I think more, and also for the former courtesy I had done for the getting of his first ship out for this hemp he did promise me a consideration upon the return of the goods, but I never did to this day demand any thing of him, only about a month ago he told me that now his ship was come, and he would come out of my debt, but told me that whereas he did expect to have had some profit by the voyage, it had proved of loss to him, by the loss of some ships, or some accidents, I know not what, and so that he was not able to do what he intended, but told me that he would present me with sixty pieces in gold. I told him I would demand nothing of his promises, though they were much greater, nor would have thus much, but if he could afford to give me but fifty pieces, it should suffice me. So now he brought something in a paper, which since proves to be fifty pieces. But before I would take them I told him that I did not insist on anything, and therefore prayed him to consult his ability before he did part with them: and so I refused them once or twice till he did the third time offer them, and then I took them, he saying that he would present me with as many more if I would undertake to get him 500l. paid on his bills. I told him I would by no means have any promise of the kind, nor would have any kindness from him for any such service, but that I should do my utmost for nothing to do him that justice, and would endeavour to do what I could for him, and so we parted, he owning himself mightily engaged to me for my kind usage of him in accepting of so small a matter in satisfaction of all that he owed me; which I enter at large for my justification if anything of this should be hereafter enquired after.
This evening also comes to me to my closet at the Office Sir John Chichly, of his own accord, to tell me what he shall answer to the Committee, when, as he expects, he shall be examined about my Lord Sandwich; which is so little as will not hurt my Lord at all, I know. He do profess great generousness towards my Lord, and that this jealousy of my Lord’s of him is without ground, but do mightily inveigh against Sir Roger Cuttance, and would never have my Lord to carry him to sea again, as being a man that hath done my Lord more hurt than ever he can repair by his ill advice, and disobliging every body. He will by no means seem to crouch to my Lord, but says that he hath as good blood in his veins as any man, though not so good a title, but that he will do nothing to wrong or prejudice my Lord, and I hope he will not, nor I believe can; but he tells me that Sir E. Spragg and Utber are the men that have done my Lord the most wrong, and did bespatter him the most at Oxford, and that my Lord was misled to believe that all that was there said was his, which indeed it was not, and says that he did at that time complain to his father of this his misfortune. This I confess is strange to me touching these two men, but yet it may well enough as the world goes, though I wonder I confess at the latter of the two, who always professes great love to my Lord.
Sir Roger Cuttance was with me in the morning, and there gives me an account so clear about Bergen and the other business against my Lord, as I do not see what can be laid to my Lord in either, and tells me that Pen, however he now dissembles it, did on the quarter deck of my Lord’s ship, after he come on board, when my Lord did fire a gun for the ships to leave pursuing the enemy, Pen did say, before a great many, several times, that his heart did leap in his belly for joy when he heard the gun, and that it was the best thing that could be done for securing the fleet. He tells me also that Pen was the first that did move and persuade my Lord to the breaking bulke, as a thing that was now the time to do right to the commanders of the great ships, who had no opportunity of getting anything by prizes, now his Lordship might distribute to everyone something, and he himself did write down before my Lord the proportions for each man. This I am glad of, though it may be this dissembling fellow may, twenty to one, deny it.
I would make a new book for my old wife
with the cipher of our loss
I would give it paper
and pray for time
I would undertake to own
a small fact
I would never title it
that it may be anything one might write down
Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 26 November 1667.