By-Catch

All this morning Col. Slingsby and I at the office getting a catch ready for the Prince de Ligne to carry his things away to-day, who is now going home again.
About noon comes my cozen H. Alcock, for whom I wrote a letter for my Lord to sign to my Lord Broghill for some preferment in Ireland, whither he is now a-going.
After him comes Mr. Creed, who brought me some books from Holland with him, well bound and good books, which I thought he did intend to give me, but I found that I must pay him.
He dined with me at my house, and from thence to Whitehall together, where I was to give my Lord an account of the stations and victualls of the fleet in order to the choosing of a fleet fit for him to take to sea, to bring over the Queen, but my Lord not coming in before 9 at night I staid no longer for him, but went back again home and so to bed.

All this by-catch to carry away.

Who is going to sign for it? Who?

Some land must pay.

I count the stations of the sea.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 6 October 1660.

Night Vision

Office day; dined at home, and all the afternoon at home to see my painters make an end of their work, which they did to-day to my content, and I am in great joy to see my house likely once again to be clean. At night to bed.

I dine
on paint
in great joy

to see
once again
at night.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 5 October 1660.

Force of Habit

This morning I was busy looking over papers at the office all alone, and being visited by Lieut. Lambert of the Charles (to whom I was formerly much beholden), I took him along with me to a little alehouse hard by our office, whither my cozen Thomas Pepys the turner had sent for me to show me two gentlemen that had a great desire to be known to me, one his name is Pepys, of our family, but one that I never heard of before, and the other a younger son of Sir Tho. Bendishes, and so we all called cozens.
After sitting awhile and drinking, my two new cozens, myself, and Lieut. Lambert went by water to Whitehall, and from thence I and Lieut. Lambert to Westminster Abbey, where we saw Dr. Frewen translated to the Archbishoprick of York.
Here I saw the Bishops of Winchester, Bangor, Rochester, Bath and Wells, and Salisbury, all in their habits, in King Henry Seventh’s chappell. But, Lord! at their going out, how people did most of them look upon them as strange creatures, and few with any kind of love or respect.
From thence we two to my Lord’s, where we took Mr. Sheply and Wm. Howe to the Raindeer, and had some oysters, which were very good, the first I have eat this year. So back to my Lord’s to dinner, and after dinner Lieut. Lambert and I did look upon my Lord’s model, and he told me many things in a ship that I desired to understand.
From thence by water I (leaving Lieut. Lambert at Blackfriars) went home, and there by promise met with Robert Shaw and Jack Spicer, who came to see me, and by the way I met upon Tower Hill with Mr. Pierce the surgeon and his wife, and took them home and did give them good wine, ale, and anchovies, and staid them till night, and so adieu.
Then to look upon my painters that are now at work in my house. At night to bed.

How to know all my habits?
Strange creatures
with a kind of love.
Oysters, which eat to understand:
water is a spice,
and the surgeon and his wife
work in my bed.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 4 October 1660.

Provisioning

With Sir W. Batten and Pen by water to White Hall, where a meeting of the Dukes of York and Albemarle, my Lord Sandwich and all the principal officers, about the Winter Guard, but we determined of nothing. To my Lord’s, who sent a great iron chest to White Hall; and I saw it carried, into the King’s closet, where I saw most incomparable pictures. Among the rest a book open upon a desk, which I durst have sworn was a reall book, and back again to my Lord, and dined all alone with him, who do treat me with a great deal of respect; and after dinner did discourse an hour with me, and advise about some way to get himself some money to make up for all his great expenses, saying that he believed that he might have any thing that he would ask of the King.
This day Mr. Sheply and all my Lord’s goods came from sea, some of them laid of the Wardrobe and some brought to my Lord’s house.
From thence to our office, where we met and did business, and so home and spent the evening looking upon the painters that are at work in my house.
This day I heard the Duke speak of a great design that he and my Lord of Pembroke have, and a great many others, of sending a venture to some parts of Africa to dig for gold ore there. They intend to admit as many as will venture their money, and so make themselves a company. 250l. is the lowest share for every man. But I do not find that my Lord do much like it.
At night Dr. Fairbrother (for so he is lately made of the Civil Law) brought home my wife by coach, it being rainy weather, she having been abroad today to buy more furniture for her house.

White winter: a mine of nothing,
a great iron book.

I dine alone with the lord of paint
and send to Africa for gold ore.

I do not find my fair
late wife.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 3 October 1660.

Water way

With Sir Wm. Pen by water to Whitehall, being this morning visited before I went out by my brother Tom, who told me that for his lying out of doors a day and a night my father had forbade him to come any more into his house, at which I was troubled, and did soundly chide him for doing so, and upon confessing his fault I told him I would speak to my father.
At Whitehall I met with Captain Clerk, and took him to the Leg in King Street, and did give him a dish or two of meat, and his purser that was with him, for his old kindness to me on board. After dinner I to Whitehall, where I met with Mrs. Hunt, and was forced to wait upon Mr. Scawen at a committee to speak for her husband, which I did. After that met with Luellin, Mr. Fage, and took them both to the Dog, and did give them a glass of wine. After that at Will’s I met with Mr. Spicer, and with him to the Abbey to see them at vespers. There I found but a thin congregation already. So I see that religion, be it what it will, is but a humour, and so the esteem of it passeth as other things do. From thence with him to see Robin Shaw, who has been a long time ill, and I have not seen him since I came from sea. He is much changed, but in hopes to be well again. From thence by coach to my father’s, and discoursed with him about Tom, and did give my advice to take him home again, which I think he will do in prudence rather than put him upon learning the way of being worse.
So home, and from home to Major Hart, who is just going out of town to-morrow, and made much of me, and did give me the oaths of supremacy and allegiance, that I may be capable of my arrears.
So home again, where my wife tells me what she has bought to-day, namely, a bed and furniture for her chamber, with which very well pleased I went to bed.

Water is a door
to a thin religion:
see a sea change
and learn the way
of being worse.
Art is in arrears.
Tell me, what furniture
am I to be?


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 2 October 1660.

Civilian

Early to my Lord to Whitehall, and there he did give me some work to do for him, and so with all haste to the office.
Dined at home, and my father by chance with me.
After dinner he and I advised about hangings for my rooms, which are now almost fit to be hung, the painters beginning to do their work to-day. After dinner he and I to the Miter, where with my uncle Wight (whom my father fetched thither), while I drank a glass of wine privately with Mr. Mansell, a poor Reformado of the Charles, who came to see me.
Here we staid and drank three or four pints of wine and so parted.
I home to look after my workmen, and at night to bed.
The Commissioners are very busy disbanding of the army, which they say do cause great robbing. My layings out upon my house in furniture are so great that I fear I shall not be able to go through them without breaking one of my bags of 100l., I having but 200l. yet in the world.

To the office. I advise
about hanging the poor.

I miss the army—
robbing, laying out fear,
breaking the world.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 1 October 1660.

Universalist

(Lord’s day). To our Parish church both forenoon and afternoon all alone.
At night went to bed without prayers, my house being every where foul above stairs.

Lord’s day is
for no one. I
went without
prayers, my
house being
everywhere.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 30 September 1660.

Chef

All day at home to make an end of our dirty work of the plasterers, and indeed my kitchen is now so handsome that I did not repent of all the trouble that I have been put to, to have it done.
This day or yesterday, I hear, Prince Rupert is come to Court; but welcome to nobody.

To make our work last
in my kitchen is
so handsome a trouble.
I have been
a prince come to court,
welcome to nobody.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 29 September 1660.

Beat Poet

(Office day). This morning Sir W. Batten and Col. Slingsby went with Col. Birch and Sir Wm. Doyly to Chatham to pay off a ship there. So only Sir W. Pen and I left here in town.
All the afternoon among my workmen till 10 or 11 at night, and did give them drink and very merry with them, it being my luck to meet with a sort of drolling workmen on all occasions. To bed.

This pen and I work
till 11 at night.
I drink and err with luck—
a droll occasion.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 28 September 1660.

Catadromous

To my Lord at Mr. Crew’s, and there took order about some business of his, and from thence home to my workmen all the afternoon. In the evening to my Lord’s, and there did read over with him and Dr. Walker my lord’s new commission for sea, and advised thereupon how to have it drawn. So home and to bed.

I work all afternoon.
In the evening to the sea—
a raw bed.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 27 September 1660.