Madness of crowds

Up, and by coach to Westminster, and there made a visit to Mr. Godolphin, at his chamber; and I do find him a very pretty and able person, a man of very fine parts, and of infinite zeal to my Lord Sandwich; and one that says he is, he believes, as wise and able a person as any prince in the world hath. He tells me that he meets with unmannerly usage by Sir Robert Southwell, in Portugall, who would sign with him in his negociations there, being a forward young man: but that my Lord mastered him in that point, it being ruled for my Lord here, at a hearing of a Committee of the Council. He says that if my Lord can compass a peace between Spain and Portugall, and hath the doing of it and the honour himself, it will be a thing of more honour than ever any man had, and of as much advantage. Thence to Westminster Hall, where the Hall mighty full: and, among other things, the House begins to sit to-day, and the King come. But, before the King’s coming, the House of Commons met; and upon information given them of a Bill intended to be brought in, as common report said, for Comprehension, they did mightily and generally inveigh against it, and did vote that the King should be desired by the House (and the message delivered by the Privy-counsellers of the House) that the laws against breakers of the Act of Uniformity should be put in execution: and it was moved in the House that, if any people had a mind to bring any new laws into the House, about religion, they might come, as a proposer of new laws did in Athens, with ropes about their necks. By and by the King comes to the Lords’ House, and there tells them of his league with Holland, and the necessity of a fleete, and his debts; and, therefore, want of money; and his desire that they would think of some way to bring in all his Protestant subjects to a right understanding and peace one with another; meaning the Bill of Comprehension. The Commons coming to their House, it was moved that the vote passed this morning might be suspended, because of the King’s speech, till the House was full and called over, two days hence: but it was denied, so furious they are against this Bill: and thereby a great blow either given to the King or Presbyters, or, which is the rather of the two, to the House itself, by denying a thing desired by the King, and so much desired by much the greater part of the nation. Whatever the consequence be, if the King be a man of any stomach and heat, all do believe that he will resent this vote.
Thence with Creed home to my house to dinner, where I met with Mr. Jackson, and find my wife angry with Deb., which vexes me. After dinner by coach away to Westminster; taking up a friend of Mr. Jackson’s, a young lawyer, and parting with Creed at White Hall. They and I to Westminster Hall, and there met Roger Pepys, and with him to his chamber, and there read over and agreed upon the Deed of Settlement to our minds: my sister to have 600l. presently, and she to be joyntured in 60l. per annum; wherein I am very well satisfied. Thence I to the Temple to Charles Porter’s lodgings, where Captain Cocke met me, and after long waiting, on Pemberton, an able lawyer, about the business of our prizes, and left the matter with him to think of against to-morrow, this being a matter that do much trouble my mind, though there be no fault in it that I need fear the owning that I know of. Thence with Cocke home to his house and there left him, and I home, and there got my wife to read a book I bought to-day, and come out to-day licensed by Joseph Williamson for Lord Arlington, shewing the state of England’s affairs relating to France at this time, and the whole body of the book very good and solid, after a very foolish introduction as ever I read, and do give a very good account of the advantage of our league with Holland at this time. So, vexed in my mind with the variety of cares I have upon me, and so to bed.

the man in a hat
believes in war for peace

and religion as a rope
about the neck

the necessity of protest
to any stomach

will we overcome
for the whole body

Erasure poems derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 10 February 1668.

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