Seasick

At the office all the morning, that done I walked in the garden with little Captain Murford, where he and I had some discourse concerning the Light-House again, and I think I shall appear in the business, he promising me that if I can bring it about, it will be worth 100l. per annum.
Then came into the garden to me young Mr. Powell and Mr. Hooke that I once knew at Cambridge, and I took them in and gave them a bottle of wine, and so parted. Then I called for a dish of fish, which we had for dinner, this being the first day of Lent; and I do intend to try whether I can keep it or no. My father dined with me and did show me a letter from my brother John, wherein he tells us that he is chosen Schollar of the house, which do please me much, because I do perceive now it must chiefly come from his merit and not the power of his Tutor, Dr. Widdrington, who is now quite out of interest there and hath put over his pupils to Mr. Pepper, a young Fellow of the College.
With my father to Mr. Rawlinson’s, where we met my uncle Wight, and after a pint or two away. I walked with my father (who gave me an account of the great falling out between my uncle Fenner and his son Will) as far as Paul’s Churchyard, and so left him, and I home.
This day the Commissioners of Parliament begin to pay off the Fleet, beginning with the Hampshire, and do it at Guildhall, for fear of going out of town into the power of the seamen, who are highly incensed against them.

Done with captain and lighthouse,
I am a hook.
I once knew a fish, a scholar
at the pint, who gave out “fen”
as a home for fear
of the power of the sea.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 27 February 1660/61.

Lexophile

(Shrove Tuesday). I left my wife in bed, being indisposed by reason of ceux-la, and I to Mrs. Turner’s, who I found busy with The. and Joyce making of things ready for fritters, so to Mr. Crew’s and there delivered Cotgrave’s Dictionary to my Lady Jemimah, and then with Mr. Moore to my coz Tom Pepys, but he being out of town I spoke with his lady, though not of the business I went about, which was to borrow 1000l. for my Lord.
Back to Mrs. Turner’s, where several friends, all strangers to me but Mr. Armiger, dined. Very merry and the best fritters that ever I eat in my life. After that looked out at window; saw the flinging at cocks.
Then Mrs. The. and I, and a gentleman that dined there and his daughter, a perfect handsome young and very tall lady that lately came out of the country, and Mr. Thatcher the Virginall Maister to Bishopsgate Street, and there saw the new Harpsicon made for Mrs. The. We offered 12l., they demanded 14l.. The Master not being at home, we could make no bargain, so parted for to-night. So all by coach to my house, where I found my Valentine with my wife, and here they drank, and then went away. Then I sat and talked with my Valentine and my wife a good while, and then saw her home, and went to Sir W. Batten to the Dolphin, where Mr. Newborne, &c., were, and there after a quart or two of wine, we home, and I went to bedwhere (God forgive me) I did please myself by strength of fancy with the young country Segnora that was at dinner with us today.

I left my wife for a dictionary.
It spoke as 1000 strangers to me,
and if I saw hand and hatch
I saw harpsicon—a bargain,
a batten, a bed where
I please my
self, strength, segnora


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 26 February 1660/61.

Stress relief

Sir Wm. Pen and I to my Lord Sandwich’s by coach in the morning to see him, but he takes physic to-day and so we could not see him. So he went away, and I with Luellin to Mr. Mount’s chamber at the Cockpit, where he did lie of old, and there we drank, and from thence to W. Symons where we found him abroad, but she, like a good lady, within, and there we did eat some nettle porrige, which was made on purpose to-day for some of their coming, and was very good. With her we sat a good while, merry in discourse, and so away, Luellin and I to my Lord’s, and there dined. He told me one of the prettiest stories, how Mr. Blurton, his friend that was with him at my house three or four days ago, did go with him the same day from my house to the Fleece tavern by Guildhall, and there (by some pretence) got the mistress of the house, a very pretty woman, into their company. And by and by, Luellin calling him Doctor, she thought that he really was so, and did privately discover her disease to him—which was only some ordinary infirmity belonging to women. And he proffering her physic—she desired him to come some day and bring it, which he did; and withal hath the sight of her thing below, and did handle it—and he swears the next time that he will do more.
After dinner by water to the office, and there Sir W. Pen and I met and did business all the afternoon, and then I got him to my house and eat a lobster together, and so to bed.

Day like a nettle.
Day for stress, that private, ordinary infirmity.
Day in which the sight of her ear will do me,
and all afternoon I eat lobster.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 25 February 1660/61.

Handy

(Sunday). Mr. Mills made as excellent a sermon in the morning against drunkenness as ever I heard in my life. I dined at home; another good one of his in the afternoon. My Valentine had her fine gloves on at church to-day that I did give her.
After sermon my wife and I unto Sir Wm. Batten and sat awhile. Then home, I to read, then to supper and to bed.

Drunk, I home in
on her fine gloves:
a church I give
a sermon to
while I sup.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Sunday 24 February 1660/61.

Changeling

This my birthday, 28 years.
This morning Sir W. Batten, Pen, and I did some business, and then I by water to Whitehall, having met Mr. Hartlibb by the way at Alderman Backwell’s. So he did give me a glass of Rhenish wine at the Steeleyard, and so to Whitehall by water. He continues of the same bold impertinent humour that he was always of and will ever be. He told me how my Lord Chancellor had lately got the Duke of York and Duchess, and her woman, my Lord Ossory’s and a Doctor, to make oath before most of the judges of the kingdom, concerning all the circumstances of their marriage. And in fine, it is confessed that they were not fully married till about a month or two before she was brought to bed; but that they were contracted long before, and time enough for the child to be legitimate. But I do not hear that it was put to the judges to determine whether it was so or no.
To my Lord and there spoke to him about his opinion of the Light, the sea-mark that Captain Murford is about, and do offer me an eighth part to concern myself with it, and my Lord do give me some encouragement in it, and I shall go on. I dined herewith Mr. Shepley and Howe. After dinner to Whitehall Chappell with Mr. Child, and there did hear Captain Cooke and his boy make a trial of an Anthem against tomorrow, which was brave musique.
Then by water to Whitefriars to the Play-house, and there saw “The Changeling,” the first time it hath been acted these twenty years, and it takes exceedingly. Besides, I see the gallants do begin to be tyred with the vanity and pride of the theatre actors who are indeed grown very proud and rich.
Then by link home, and there to my book awhile and to bed.
I met to-day with Mr. Townsend, who tells me that the old man is yet alive in whose place in the Wardrobe he hopes to get my father, which I do resolve to put for.
I also met with the Comptroller, who told me how it was easy for us all, the principal officers, and proper for us, to labour to get into the next Parliament; and would have me to ask the Duke’s letter, but I shall not endeavour it because it will spend much money, though I am sure I could well obtain it. This is now 28 years that I am born. And blessed be God, in a state of full content, and great hopes to be a happy man in all respects, both to myself and friends.

My birthday is water in wine,
an impertinent chance.
I do not concern myself with it.
Give me rage
and I shall go on:
I was a changeling.
The man in whose place I troll
was born happy.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Saturday 23 February 1660/61.

Double take

All the morning at the office. At noon with my wife and Pall to my father’s to dinner, where Dr. Thos. Pepys and my coz Snow and Joyce Norton. After dinner came The. Turner, and so I home with her to her mother, good woman, whom I had not seen through my great neglect this half year, but she would not be angry with me. Here I staid all the afternoon talking of the King’s being married, which is now the town talk, but I believe false.
In the evening Mrs. The. and Joyce took us all into the coach home, calling in Bishopsgate Street, thinking to have seen a new Harpsicon that she had a making there, but it was not done, and so we did not see it. Then to my home, where I made very much of her, and then she went home. Then my wife to Sir W. Batten’s, and there sat a while; he having yesterday sent my wife half-a-dozen pairs of gloves, and a pair of silk stockings and garters, for her Valentine’s gift.
Then home and to bed.

O my fat snow,
turn my great neglect to joy.
I have seen that I did not see
the home I made and the home I sat in,
a pair of gloves and a pair of stockings,
an art, her gift…


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Friday 22 February 1660/61.

Public works

To Westminster by coach with Sir W. Pen, and in our way saw the city begin to build scaffolds against the Coronacion. To my Lord, and there found him out of doors. So to the Hall and called for some caps that I have a making there, and here met with Mr. Hawley, and with him to Will’s and drank, and then by coach with Mr. Langley our old friend into the city. I set him down by the way, and I home and there staid all day within, having found Mr. Moore, who staid with me till late at night talking and reading some good books. Then he went away, and I to bed.

We saw the city
build scaffolds
for all who read books.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Thursday 21 February 1660/61.

Courtly love

All the morning at the office, dined at home and my brother Tom with me, who brought me a pair of fine slippers which he gave me. By and by comes little Luellin and friend to see me, and then my coz Stradwick, who was never here before. With them I drank a bottle of wine or two, and to the office again, and there staid about business late, and then all of us to Sir W. Pen’s, where we had, and my Lady Batten, Mrs. Martha, and my wife, and other company, a good supper, and sat playing at cards and talking till 12 at night, and so all to our lodgings.

A fine lip the bottle had—
my lady
and her good night.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Wednesday 20 February 1660/61.

Purchase

By coach to Whitehall with Colonel Slingsby (carrying Mrs. Turner with us) and there he and I up into the house, where we met with Sir G. Carteret: who afterwards, with the Duke of York, my Lord Sandwich, and others, went into a private room to consult: and we were a little troubled that we were not called in with the rest. But I do believe it was upon something very private. We staid walking in the gallery; where we met with Mr. Slingsby, that was formerly a great friend of Mons. Blondeau, who showed me the stamps of the King’s new coyne; which is strange to see, how good they are in the stamp and bad in the money, for lack of skill to make them. But he says Blondeau will shortly come over, and then we shall have it better, and the best in the world.
The Comptroller and I to the Commissioners of Parliament, and after some talk away again and to drink a cup of ale. He tells me, he is sure that the King is not yet married, as it is said; nor that it is known who he will have. To my Lord’s and found him dined, and so I lost my dinner, but I staid and played with him and Mr. Child, &c., some things of four parts, and so it raining hard and bitter cold (the first winter day we have yet had this winter), I took coach home and spent the evening in reading of a Latin play, the “Naufragium Joculare.” And so to bed.

I carry a private trouble on a walk:
a new coin, good in the stamp
and bad in the money.
I have my dinner with it—
hard and cold.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Tuesday 19 February 1660/61.

Apothegmatic

At the office all the morning, dined at home with a very good dinner, only my wife and I, which is not yet very usual. In the afternoon my wife and I and Mrs. Martha Batten, my Valentine, to the Exchange, and there upon a payre of embroydered and six payre of plain white gloves I laid out 40s. upon her. Then we went to a mercer’s at the end of Lombard Street, and there she bought a suit of Lutestring for herself, and so home. And at night I got the whole company and Sir Wm. Pen home to my house, and there I did give them Rhenish wine and sugar, and continued together till it was late, and so to bed.
It is much talked that the King is already married to the niece of the Prince de Ligne, and that he hath two sons already by her: which I am sorry to hear; but yet am gladder that it should be s o, than that the Duke of York and his family should come to the crown, he being a professed friend to the Catholiques.

Only love a bard
for the company and the wine,
as a king
is a ladder to the crown.


Erasure poem derived from The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Monday 18 February 1660/61.