Six-Line Psalm

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Up very early, and by water to Whitehall to my Lord’s, and there up to my Lord’s lodging (Wm. Howe being now ill of the gout at Mr. Pierce’s), and there talked with him about the affairs of the Navy, and how I was now to wait today at the Privy Seal. Commissioner Pett went with me, whom I desired to make my excuse at the office for my absence this day.
Hence to the Privy Seal Office, where I got (by Mr. Mathews’ means) possession of the books and table, but with some expectation of Baron’s bringing of a warrant from the King to have this month.
Nothing done this morning, Baron having spoke to Mr. Woodson and Groome (clerks to Mr. Trumbull of the Signet) to keep all work in their hands till the afternoon, at which time he expected to have his warrant from the King for this month.
I took at noon Mr. Harper to the Leg in King Street, and did give him his dinner, who did still advise me much to act wholly myself at the Privy Seal, but I told him that I could not, because I had other business to take up my time.
In the afternoon at, the office again, where we had many things to sign; and I went to the Council Chamber, and there got my Lord to sign the first bill, and the rest all myself; but received no money today. After I had signed all, I went with Dick Scobell and Luellin to drink at a bottle beer house in the Strand, and after staying there a while (had sent W. Hewer home before), I took boat and homewards went, and in Fish Street bought a Lobster, and as I had bought it I met with Winter and Mr. Delabarr, and there with a piece of sturgeon of theirs we went to the Sun Tavern in the street and ate them. Late home and to bed.

My Lord is with me;
I desire a book of hands.
Give me to act
wholly myself.
Bottle me a lobster
and a winter sun.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 1 August 1660.

Sad Money

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To White Hall, where my Lord and the principal officers met, and had a great discourse about raising of money for the Navy, which is in very sad condition, and money must be raised for it. Mr. Blackburne, Dr. Clerke, and I to the Quaker’s and dined there. I back to the Admiralty, and there was doing things in order to the calculating of the debts of the Navy and other business, all the afternoon. At night I went to the Privy Seal, where I found Mr. Crofts and Mathews making up all their things to leave the office tomorrow, to those that come to wait the next month. I took them to the Sun Tavern and there made them drink, and discoursed concerning the office, and what I was to expect tomorrow about Baron, who pretends to the next month.
Late home by coach so far as Ludgate with Mr. Mathews, and thence home on foot with W. Hewer with me, and so to bed.

I had sad money
and a din of debts all night,
things that come to wait:
the sun on ice,
a pretend home on foot.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 31 July 1660.

Imperial Official

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Sat at our office to-day, and my father came this day the first time to see us at my new office. And Mrs. Crisp by chance came in and sat with us, looked over our house and advised about the furnishing of it. This afternoon I got my 50l., due to me for my first quarter’s salary as Secretary to my Lord, paid to Tho. Hater for me, which he received and brought home to me, of which I am full glad.
To Westminster and among other things met with Mr. Moore, and took him and his friend, a bookseller of Paul’s Churchyard, to the Rhenish Winehouse, and drinking there the sword-bearer of London (Mr. Man) came to ask for us, with whom we sat late, discoursing about the worth of my office of Clerk of the Acts, which he hath a mind to buy, and I asked four years’ purchase. We are to speak more of it to-morrow. Home on foot; and seeing him at home in Butlersbury, he lent me a torch, which Will carried; and so home.

At my new office, paid
to hate, I am full
of sword and torch.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 30 July 1660.

Homeless

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Lord’s day. I and my boy Will to Whitehall, and I with my Lord to White Hall Chappell, where I heard a cold sermon of the Bishop of Salisbury’s, and the ceremonies did not please me, they do so overdo them.
My Lord went to dinner at Kensington with my Lord Camden. So I dined and took Mr. Birfett, my Lord’s chaplain, and his friend along with me, with Mr. Sheply at my Lord’s.
In the afternoon with Dick Vines and his brother Payton, we walked to Lisson Green and Marybone and back again, and finding my Lord at home I got him to look over my accounts, which he did approve of and signed them, and so we are even to this day. Of this I was glad, and do think myself worth clear money about 120l. Home late, calling in at my father’s without stay. To bed.

I bury a friend at the green
bone of the day.
I think myself one without a bed.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 29 July 1660.

By Any Other Name

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Early in the morning rose, and a boy brought me a letter from Poet Fisher, who tells me that he is upon a panegyrique of the King, and desired to borrow a piece of me; and I sent him half a piece.
To Westminster, and there dined with Mr. Sheply and W. Howe, afterwards meeting with Mr. Henson, who had formerly had the brave clock that went with bullets (which is now taken away from him by the King, it being his goods). I went with him to the Sun Tavern and sent for Mr. Butler, who was now all full of his high discourse in praise of Ireland, whither he and his whole family are going by Coll. Dillon’s persuasion, but so many lies I never heard in praise of anything as he told of Ireland. So home late at night and to bed.

Early morning rose—
a poet desired it,
but so many lies I never heard
in praise of anything.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 28 July 1660.

Man with a Bag

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The last night Sir W. Batten and Sir W. Pen came to their houses at the office. Met this morning and did business till noon. Dined at home and from thence to my Lord’s where Will, my clerk, and I were all the afternoon making up my accounts, which we had done by night, and I find myself worth about 100l. after all my expenses.
At night, I sent to W. Bowyer to bring me a 100l bag that he hath in his hands of my Lord’s in keeping, out of which I paid Mr. Sheply all that remains due to my Lord upon my balance, and took the rest home with me late at night. We got a coach, but the horses were tired and could not carry us farther than St. Dunstan’s. So we ‘light and took a link and so home weary to bed.

Night came at noon
in a bag that I took
home with me—
late night, but the horses
could not carry us
farther than a light ink.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 27 July 1660.

Sacrificial

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Early to White Hall, thinking to have a meeting of my Lord and the principal officers, but my Lord could not, it being the day that he was to go and be admitted in the House of Lords, his patent being done, which he presented upon his knees to the Speaker; and so it was read in the House, and he took his place.
I at the Privy Seal Office with Mr. Hooker, who brought me acquainted with Mr. Crofts of the Signet, and I invited them to a dish of meat at the Leg in King Street, and so we dined there and I paid for all and had very good light given me as to my employment there. Afterwards to Mr. Pierces, where I should have dined but I could not, but found Mr. Sheply and W. Howe there. After we had drunk hard we parted, and I went away and met Dr. Castle, who is one of the Clerks of the Privy Seal, and told him how things were with my Lord and me, which he received very gladly. I was this day told how Baron against all expectation and law has got the place of Bickerstaffe, and so I question whether he will not lay claim to wait the next month, but my Lord tells me that he will stand for it.
In the evening I met with T. Doling, who carried me to St. James’s Fair, and there meeting with W. Symons and his wife, and Luellin, and D. Scobell’s wife and cousin, we went to Wood’s at the Pell Mell (our old house for clubbing), and there we spent till 10 at night, at which time I sent to my Lord’s for my clerk Will to come to me, and so by link home to bed. Where I found Commissioner Willoughby had sent for all his things away out of my bedchamber, which is a little disappointment, but it is better than pay too dear for them.

Thinking of
the Lord, I took
a dish of meat
for a light.
I should have dined,
but could not
part with
my question.
We come home
to disappointment,
pay too dear.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 26 July 1660.

Defogging

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In the morning at the office, and after that down to Whitehall, where I met with Mr. Creed, and with him and a Welsh schoolmaster, a good scholar but a very pedagogue, to the ordinary at the Leg in King Street. I got my certificate of my Lord’s and my being sworn. This morning my Lord took leave of the House of Commons, and had the thanks of the House for his great services to his country.
In the afternoon (but this is a mistake, for it was yesterday in the afternoon) Monsieur L’Impertinent and I met and I took him to the Sun and drank with him, and in the evening going away we met his mother and sisters and father coming from the Gatehouse; where they lodge, where I did the first time salute them all, and very pretty Madame Frances is indeed. After that very late home and called in Tower Street, and there at a barber’s was trimmed the first time. Home and to bed.

Agog at the morning mist,
I met the sun at the gate
where a barber trimmed me.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 25 July 1660.

Pinnipedestrian

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To White Hall, where I did acquaint Mr. Watkins with my being sworn into the Privy Seal, at which he was much troubled, but put it up and did offer me a kinsman of his to be my clerk, which I did give him some hope of, though I never intend it. In the afternoon I spent much time in walking in White Hall Court with Mr. Bickerstaffe, who was very glad of my Lord’s being sworn, because of his business with his brother Baron, which is referred to my Lord Chancellor, and to be ended to-morrow. Baron hath got a grant beyond sea to come in before the Reversioners of the Privy Seal. This afternoon Mr. Mathews came to me, to get a certificate of my Lord’s and my being sworn, which I put in some forwardness, and so home and to bed.

Kin to the seal,
I walk beyond the version
of the sea I am.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 24 July 1660.

Tribute

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This morning Mr. Barlow comes to me, and he and I went forth to a scrivener in Fenchurch Street, whom we found sick of the gout in bed, and signed and sealed our agreement before him.
He urged to have these words (in consideration whereof) to be interlined, which I granted, though against my will.
Met this morning at the office, and afterwards Mr. Barlow by appointment came and dined with me, and both of us very pleasant and pleased. After dinner to my Lord, who took me to Secretary Nicholas, and there before him and Secretary Morris, my Lord and I upon our knees together took our oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy; and the Oath of the Privy Seal, of which I was much glad, though I am not likely to get anything by it at present; but I do desire it, for fear of a turn- out of our office. That done and my Lord gone from me, I went with Mr. Cooling and his brother, and Sam Hartlibb, little Jennings and some others to the King’s Head Tavern at Charing Cross, where after drinking I took boat and so home, where we supped merrily among ourselves (our little boy proving a droll) and so after prayers to bed.
This day my Lord had heard that Mr. Barnwell was dead, but it is not so yet, though he be very ill.
I was troubled all this day with Mr. Cooke, being willing to do him good, but my mind is so taken up with my own business that I cannot.

We dine on our knees
and drink to my dead cook,
my mind taken up
with my own sin.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 23 July 1660.