Many excellent books have been written about Pepys so this page is kept short.
Pepys was born in London, the son of John Pepys, a tailor. He was educated at St Paul's School, London, and Magdalene College, Cambridge. In 1659, through family ties, he got a post in the Exchequer as a clerk, becoming Clerk of the Council the same year. In 1660 he became a Clerk of the Privy Seal and Clerk of the King's ships. He wrote a candid diary, which covered the years 1660 to 1669 and is one of the main records of daily life of the period. In addition to Pepys' own interests and intimate thoughts, it covered the Restoration, the Plague 1665 and the Fire of London 1666. Pepys abandoned writing his diary because he thought he was going blind but his sight lasted the rest of his life. Written partly in a form of shorthand, the diary was not deciphered until 1825. Pepys' diary records several visits to the Epsom & Ewell Area.
Pepys was made Secretary to the Admiralty in 1672 until he was imprisoned in the Tower of London in 1679 on suspicion of being a catholic sympathiser. He was reinstated in 1684, but lost his post in the "Glorious Revolution" of 1688 when the country was disillusioned with the King and once again faced civil war. As a very able administrator and as Navy Secretary, Pepys carried out far-reaching reforms and when he left office the country had 76 ships and about 12000 men with good stocks of essential equipment. Within 5 years, however, the numbers had dropped to 24 ships, depleted stores and 3000 men, many of whom were near mutiny due to not being paid. Pepys realised the risks and petitioned both Charles II and James II to instigate a major recovery of the navy. James II took notice and with Pepys' help, increased the number of ships to 92 and the moral and discipline of the men was restored. In an Admiralty minute of 1805 Pepys was described as "a man of extraordinary knowledge, of great talent and the most indefatigable in industry". In 1684 he was elected president of the Royal Society. He was forced to retire in 1689 following an accusation that he sold navy secrets to France. Pepys died on May 26, 1703, in London.
This article was researched and written by Peter Reed, 2006
Extracts From The Diary of Samuel Pepys
25th July 1663
Up and to my office setting papers in order for these two or three days, in which I have been hindered a little, and then having intended this day to go to Banstead Downs to see a famous race, I sent Will to get himself ready to go with me, and I also by and by home and put on my riding suit, and being ready came to the office to Sir J. Minnes and Sir W. Batten, and did a little of course at the office this morning, and so by boat to White Hall, where I hear that the race is put off, because the Lords do sit in Parliament to-day. However, having appointed Mr. Creed to come to me to Fox Hall, I went over thither, and after some debate, Creed and I resolved to go to Clapham, to Mr. Gauden's, who had sent his coach to their place for me because I was to have my horse of him to go to the race. So I went thither by coach and my Will by horse with me; Mr. Creed he went over back again to Westminster to fetch his horse. When I came to Mr. Gauden's one first thing was to show me his house, which is almost built, wherein he and his family live. I find it very regular and finely contrived, and the gardens and offices about it as convenient and as full of good variety as ever I saw in my life. It is true he hath been censured for laying out so much money; but he tells me that he built it for his brother, who is since dead (the Bishop), who when he should come to be Bishop of Winchester, which he was promised (to which bishoprick at present there is no house), he did intend to dwell here. Besides, with the good husbandry in making his bricks and other things I do not think it costs him so much money as people think and discourse. By and by to dinner, and in comes Mr. Creed. I saluted Mr. Gauden's lady, and the young ladies, he having many pretty children, and his sister, the Bishop's widow; who was, it seems, Sir W. Russel's daughter, the Treasurer of the Navy; who by her discourse at dinner I find to be very well-bred, and a woman of excellent discourse, even so much as to have my attention all dinner with much more pleasure than I did give to Mr. Creed, whose discourse was mighty merry in inveighing at Mr. Gauden's victuals that they had at sea the last voyage that he prosecuted, till methought the woman began to take it seriously.
After dinner by Mr. Gauden's motion we got Mrs. Gauden and her sister to sing to a viall, on which Mr. Gauden's eldest son (a pretty man, but a simple one methinks) played but very poorly, and the musique bad, but yet I commended it. Only I do find that the ladies have been taught to sing and do sing well now, but that the viall puts them out. I took the viall and played some things from one of their books, Lyra lessons, which they seemed to like well. Thus we pass an hour or two after dinner and towards the evening we bade them Adieu! and took horse; being resolved that, instead of the race which fails us, we would go to Epsum. So we set out, and being gone a little way I sent home Will to look to the house, and Creed and I rode forward; the road being full of citizens going and coming toward Epsum, where, when we came, we could hear of no lodging, the town so full; but which was better, I went towards Ashted, my old place of pleasure; and there by direction of one goodman Arthur, whom we met on the way, we went to Farmer Page's, at which direction he and I made good sport, and there we got a lodging in a little hole we could not stand upright in, but rather than go further to look we staid there, and while supper was getting ready I took him to walk up and down behind my cozen Pepys's house that was, which I find comes little short of what I took it to be when I was a little boy, as things use commonly to appear greater than then when one comes to be a man and knows more, and so up and down in the closes, which I know so well methinks, and account it good fortune that I lie here that I may have opportunity to renew my old walks. It seems there is one Mr. Rouse, they call him the Queen's Tailor, that lives there now. So to our lodging to supper, and among other meats had a brave dish of cream, the best I ever eat in my life, and with which we pleased ourselves much, and by and by to bed, where, with much ado yet good sport, we made shift to lie, but with little ease, and a little spaniel by us, which has followed us all the way, a pretty dogg, and we believe that follows my horse, and do belong to Mrs. Gauden, which we, therefore, are very careful of.
26th July 1663 (Lord's-day)
Up and to the Wells, where great store of citizens, which was the greatest part of the company, though there were some others of better quality. I met many that I knew, and we drank each of us two pots and so walked away, it being very pleasant to see how everybody turns up his tail, here one and there another, in a bush, and the women in their quarters the like. Thence I walked with Creed to Mr. Minnes's house, which has now a very good way made to it, and thence to Durdans and walked round it and within the Court Yard and to the Bowling-green, where I have seen so much mirth in my time; but now no family in it (my Lord Barkeley, whose it is, being with his family at London), and so up and down by Minnes's wood, with great pleasure viewing my old walks, and where Mrs. Hely and I did use to walk and talk, with whom I had the first sentiments of love and pleasure in woman's company, discourse, and taking her by the hand, she being a pretty woman.
So I led him to Ashted Church (by the place where Peter, my cozen's man, went blindfold and found a certain place we chose for him upon a wager), where we had a dull Doctor, one Downe, worse than I think even parson King was, of whom we made so much scorn, and after sermon home, and staid while our dinner, a couple of large chickens, were dressed, and a good mess of cream, which anon we had with good content, and after dinner (we taking no notice of other lodgers in the house, though there was one that I knew, and knew and spoke to me, one Mr. Rider, a merchant), he and I to walk, and I led him to the pretty little wood behind my cozens house, into which we got at last by clambering, and our little dog with us, but when we were among the hazel trees and bushes, Lord! what a course did we run for an hour together, losing ourselves, and indeed I despaired I should ever come to any path, but still from thicket to thicket, a thing I could hardly have believed a man could have been lost so long in so small a room. At last I found out a delicate walk in the middle that goes quite through the wood, and then went out of the wood, and holloed Mr. Creed, and made him hunt me from place to place, and at last went in and called him into my fine walk, the little dog still hunting with us through the wood. In this walk being all bewildered and weary and sweating, Creed he lay down upon the ground, which I did a little, but I durst not long, but walked from him in the fine green walk, which is half a mile long, there reading my vows as I used to on Sundays. And after that was done, and going and lying by Creed an hour, he and I rose and went to our lodging and paid our reckoning, and so mounted, whether to go toward London home or to find a new lodging, and so rode through Epsum, the whole town over, seeing the various companys that were there walking; which was very pleasant to see how they are there without knowing almost what to do, but only in the morning to drink waters. But, Lord! to see how many I met there of citizens, that I could not have thought to have seen there, or that they had ever had it in their heads or purses to go down thither.
We rode out of the town through Yowell beyond Nonesuch House a mile, and there our little dogg, as he used to do, fell a-running after a flock of sheep feeding on the common, till he was out of sight, and then endeavoured to come back again, and went to the last gate that he parted with us at, and there the poor thing mistakes our scent, instead of coming forward he hunts us backward, and runs as hard as he could drive back towards Nonesuch, Creed and I after him, and being by many told of his going that way and the haste he made, we rode still and passed him through Yowell, and there we lost any further information of him. However, we went as far as Epsum almost, hearing nothing of him, we went back to Yowell, and there was told that he did pass through the town. We rode back to Nonesuch to see whether he might be gone back again, but hearing nothing we with great trouble and discontent for the loss of our dogg came back once more to Yowell, and there set up our horses and selves for all night, employing people to look for the dogg in the town, but can hear nothing of him. However, we gave order for supper, and while that was dressing walked out through Nonesuch Park to the house, and there viewed as much as we could of the outside, and looked through the great gates, and found a noble court; and altogether believe it to have been a very noble house, and a delicate park about it, where just now there was a doe killed, for the King to carry up to Court. So walked back again, and by and by our supper being ready, a good leg of mutton boiled, we supped and to bed, upon two beds in the same room, wherein we slept most excellently all night.
27th July 1663
Up in the morning about 7 o'clock, and after a little study, resolved of riding to the Wells to look for our dogg, which we did, but could hear nothing; but it being much a warmer day than yesterday there was great store of gallant company, more than then, to my greater pleasure. There was at a distance, under one of the trees on the common, a company got together that sung. I, at the distance, and so all the rest being a quarter of a mile off, took them for the Waytes, so I rode up to them, and found them only voices, some citizens met by chance, that sung four or five parts excellently. I have not been more pleased with a snapp of musique, considering the circumstances of the time and place,, in all my life anything so pleasant. We drank each of us, three cupps, and so, after riding up to the horsemen upon the hill, where they were making of matches to run, we went away and to Yowell, where we found our breakfast, the remains of our supper last night hashed, and by and by, after the smith had set on two new shoes to Creed's horse, we mounted, and with little discourse, I being intent upon getting home in time, we rode hard home, observing Mr. Gauden's house, but not calling there (it being too late for me to stay, and wanting their dog too). The house stands very finely, and has a graceful view to the highway. Set up our horses at Fox Hall, and I by water (observing the King's barge attending his going to the House this day) home, it being about one o'clock.
So got myself ready and shifting myself, and so by water to Westminster, and there came most luckily to the Lords' House as the House of Commons were going into the Lord's House, and there I crowded in along with the Speaker, and got to stand close behind him, where he made his speech to the King (who sat with his crown on and robes, and so all the Lords in their robes, a fine sight); wherein he told his Majesty what they have done this Parliament, and now offered for his royall consent. The greatest matters were a bill for the Lord's day (which it seems the Lords have lost, and so cannot be passed, at which the Commons are displeased); the bills against Conventicles and Papists (but it seems the Lords have not passed them), and giving his Majesty four entire subsidys; which last, with about twenty smaller Acts, were passed with this form: The Clerk of the House reads the title of the bill, and then looks at the end and there finds (writ by the King I suppose) "Le Roy le veult," and that he reads. And to others he reads, "Soit fait comme vous desirez." And to the Subsidys, as well that for the Commons, I mean the layety, as for the Clergy, the King writes, "Le Roy remerciant les Seigneurs, etc., Prelats, etc., accepte leur benevolences." The Speaker's speech was far from any oratory, but was as plain (though good matter) as any thing could be, and void of elocution.
After the bills passed, the King, sitting on his throne, with his speech writ in a paper which he held in his lap, and scarce looked off of it, I thought, all the time he made his speech to them, giving them thanks for their subsidys, of which, had he not need, he would not have asked or received them; and that need, not from any extravagancys of his, he was sure, in any thing, but the disorders of the times compelling him to be at greater charge than he hoped for the future, by their care in their country, he should be: and that for his family expenses and others, he would labour however to retrench in many things convenient, and would have all others to do so too. He desired that nothing of old faults should be remembered, or severity for the same used to any in the country, it being his desire to have all forgot as well as forgiven. But, however, to use all care in suppressing any tumults, etc.; assuring them that the restless spirits of his and their adversaries have great expectations of something to be done this summer. And promised that though the Acts about Conventicles and Papists were not ripe for passing this Session, yet he would take care himself that neither of them should in this intervall be encouraged to the endangering of the peace; and that at their next meeting he would himself prepare two bills for them concerning them. So he concluded, that for the better proceeding of justice he did think fit to make this a Session, and to prorogue them to the 16th of March next. His speech was very plain, nothing at all of spirit in it, nor spoke with any; but rather on the contrary imperfectly, repeating many times his words though he read all which I was sorry to see, it having not been hard for him to have got all the speech without book. So they all went away, the King out of the House at the upper end, he being by and by to go to Tunbridge to the Queen; and I in the Painted Chamber spoke with my Lord Sandwich while he was putting off his robes, who tells me he will now hasten down into the country, as soon as he can get some money settled on the Wardrobe. Here meeting Creed, he and I down to the Hall, and I having at Michell's shop wrote a little letter to Mr. Gauden, to go with his horse, and excusing my not taking leave or so much as asking after the old lady the widow when we came away the other day from them, he and I over the water to Fox Hall, and there sent away the horse with my letter, and then to the new Spring Garden, walking up and down, but things being dear and little attendance to be had we went away, leaving much brave company there, and so to a less house hard by, where we liked very well their Codlin tarts, having not time, as we intended, to stay the getting ready of a dish of pease. And there came to us an idle boy to show us some tumbling tricks, which he did very well, and the greatest bending of his body that ever I observed in my life.
Thence by water to White Hall, and walked over the Park to St. James's; but missed Mr. Coventry, he not being within; and so out again, and there the Duke was coming along the Pell-Mell. It being a little darkish, I staid not to take notice of him, but we went directly back again. And in our walk over the Park, one of the Duke's footmen came running behind us, and came looking just in our faces to see who we were, and went back again. What his meaning is I know not, but was fearful that I might not go far enough with my hat off, though methinks that should not be it, besides, there were others covered nearer than myself was, but only it was my fear. So to White Hall and by water to the Bridge, and so home to bed, weary and well pleased with my journey in all respects. Only it cost me about 20s., but it was for my health, and I hope will prove so, only I do find by my riding a little swelling to rise just by my anus. I had the same the last time I rode, and then it fell again, and now it is up again about the bigness of the bag of a silkworm, makes me fearful of a rupture. But I will speak to Mr. Hollyard about it, and I am glad to find it now, that I may prevent it before it goes too far.
21st September 1665
Up between five and six o'clock; and by the time I was ready, my Lord's coach comes for me; and taking Will Hewer with me, who is all in mourning for his father, who is lately dead of the plague, as my boy Tom's is also, I set out, and took about £100 with me to pay the fees there, and so rode in some fear of robbing. When I come thither, I find only Mr. Ward, who led me to Burgess's bedside, and Spicer's, who, watching of the house, as it is their turns every night, did lie long in bed to-day, and I find nothing at all done in my business, which vexed me. But not seeing how to helpe it I did walk up and down with Mr. Ward to see the house; and by and by Spicer and Mr. Falconbrige come to me and he and I to a towne near by, Yowell, there drink and set up my horses and also bespoke a dinner, and while that is dressing went with Spicer and walked up and down the house and park; and a fine place it hath heretofore been, and a fine prospect about the house. A great walk of an elme and a walnutt set one after another in order. And all the house on the outside filled with figures of stories, and good painting of Rubens' or Holben's doing. And one great thing is, that most of the house is covered, I mean the posts, and quarters in the walls; covered with lead, and gilded. I walked into the ruined garden, and there found a plain little girle, kinswoman of Mr. Falconbridge, to sing very finely by the eare only, but a fine way of singing, and if I come ever to lacke a girle again I shall think of getting her. Thence to the towne, and there Spicer, Woodruffe, and W. Bowyer and I dined together and a friend of Spicer's; and a good dinner I had for them. Falconbrige dined somewhere else, by appointment. Strange to see how young W. Bowyer looks at 41 years; one would not take him for 24 or more, and is one of the greatest wonders I ever did see. After dinner, about 4 of the clock we broke up, and I took coach and home (in fear for the money I had with me, but that this friend of Spicer's, one of the Duke's guard did ride along the best part of the way with us). I got to my Lord Bruncker's before night, and there I sat and supped with him and his mistresse, and Cocke whose boy is yet ill. Thence, after losing a crowne betting at Tables, we walked home, Cocke seeing me at my new lodging, where I went to bed. All my worke this day in the coach going and coming was to refresh myself in my musique scale, which I would fain have perfecter than ever I had yet.
29th September 1665
To sleep till 5 o'clock, when it is now very dark, and then rose, being called up by order by Mr. Marlow, and so up and dressed myself, and by and by comes Mr. Lashmore on horseback, and I had my horse I borrowed of Mr. Gillthropp, Sir W. Batten's clerke, brought to me, and so we set out and rode hard and was at Nonsuch by about eight o'clock, a very fine journey and a fine day. There I come just about chappell time and so I went to chappell with them and thence to the several offices about my tallys, which I find done, but strung for sums not to my purpose, and so was forced to get them to promise me to have them cut into other sums. But, Lord! what ado I had to persuade the dull fellows to it, especially Mr. Warder, Master of the Pells, and yet without any manner of reason for their scruple. But at last I did, and so left my tallies there against another day, and so walked to Yowell, and there did spend a peece upon them, having a whole house full, and much mirth by a sister of the mistresse of the house, an old mayde lately married to a lieutenant of a company that quarters there, and much pleasant discourse we had and, dinner being done, we to horse again and come to Greenwich before night, and so to my lodging, and there being a little weary sat down and fell to order some of my pocket papers, and then comes Captain Cocke, and after a great deal of discourse with him seriously upon the disorders of our state through lack of men to mind the public business and to understand it, we broke up, sitting up talking very late. We spoke a little of my late business propounded of taking profit for my money laid out for these goods, but he finds I rise in my demand, he offering me still L500 certain. So we did give it over, and I to bed. I hear for certain this night upon the road that Sir Martin Noell is this day dead of the plague in London, where he hath lain sick of it these eight days.
20th November 1665
Up before day, and wrote some letters to go to my Lord, among others that about W. Howe, which I believe will turn him out, and so took horse for Nonesuch, with two men with me, and the ways very bad, and the weather worse, for wind and rayne. But we got in good time thither, and I did get my tallys got ready, and thence, with as many as could go, to Yowell, and there dined very well, and I saw my Besse, a very well- favoured country lass there, and after being very merry and having spent a piece I took horse, and by another way met with a very good road, but it rained hard and blew, but got home very well. Here I find Mr. Deering come to trouble me about business, which I soon dispatched and parted, he telling me that Luellin hath been dead this fortnight, of the plague, in St. Martin's Lane, which much surprised me.
28th November 1665
Up before day, and Cocke and I took a hackney coach appointed with four horses to take us up, and so carried us over London Bridge. But there, thinking of some business, I did 'light at the foot of the bridge, and by helpe of a candle at a stall, where some payers were at work, I wrote a letter to Mr. Hater, and never knew so great an instance of the usefulness of carrying pen and ink and wax about one: so we, the way being very bad, to Nonesuch, and thence to Sir Robert Longs house; a fine place, and dinner time ere we got thither; but we had breakfasted a little at Mr. Gawden's, he being out of towne though, and there borrowed Dr. Taylor's sermons, and is a most excellent booke and worth my buying, where had a very good dinner, and curiously dressed, and here a couple of ladies, kinswomen of his, not handsome though, but rich, that knew me by report of The. Turner, and mighty merry we were. After dinner to talk of our business, the Act of Parliament, where in short I see Sir R. Long mighty fierce in the great good qualities of it. But in that and many other things he was stiff in, I think without much judgement, or the judgement I expected from him, and already they have evaded the necessity of bringing people into the Exchequer with their bills to be paid there. Sir G. Carteret is titched at this, yet resolves with me to make the best use we can of this Act for the King, but all our care, we think, will not render it as it should be. He did again here alone discourse with me about my Lord, and is himself strongly for my Lord's not going to sea, which I am glad to hear and did confirm him in it. He tells me too that he talked last night with the Duke of Albemarle about my Lord Sandwich, by the by making him sensible that it is his interest to preserve his old friends, which he confessed he had reason to do, for he knows that ill offices were doing of him, and that he honoured my Lord Sandwich with all his heart. After this discourse we parted, and all of us broke up and we parted. Captain Cocke and I through Wandsworth. Drank at Sir Allen Broderick's, a great friend and comrade of Cocke's, whom he values above the world for a witty companion, and I believe he is so. So to Fox-Hall and there took boat, and down to the Old Swan, and thence to Lumbard Streete, it being darke night, and thence to the Tower. Took boat and down to Greenwich, Cocke and I, he home and I to the office, where did a little business, and then to my lodgings, where my wife is come, and I am well pleased with it, only much trouble in those lodgings we have, the mistresse of the house being so deadly dear in everything we have; so that we do resolve to remove home soon as we know how the plague goes this weeke, which we hope will be a good decrease. So to bed.
14th July 1667 (Lord's day)
Up, and my wife, a little before four, and to make us ready; and by and by Mrs. Turner come to us, by agreement, and she and I staid talking below, while my wife dressed herself, which vexed me that she was so long about it keeping us till past five o'clock before she was ready. She ready; and, taking some bottles of wine, and beer, and some cold fowle with us into the coach, we took coach and four horses, which I had provided last night, and so away. A very fine day, and so towards Epsum, talking all the way pleasantly, and particularly of the pride and ignorance of Mrs. Lowther, in having of her train carried up? The country very fine, only the way very dusty. We got to Epsum by eight o'clock, to the well; where much company, and there we 'light, and I drank the water: they did not, but do go about and walk a little among the women, but I did drink four pints, and had some very good stools by it. Here I met with divers of our town, among others with several of the tradesmen of our office, but did talk but little with them, it growing hot in the sun, and so we took coach again and to the towne, to the King's Head, where our coachman carried us, and there had an ill room for us to go into, but the best in the house that was not taken up. Here we called for drink, and bespoke dinner; and hear that my Lord Buckhurst and Nelly are lodged at the next house, and Sir Charles Sidly with them and keep a merry house. Poor girl! I pity her; but more the loss of her at the King's house. Here I saw Gilsthrop, Sir W. Batten's clerk that hath been long sick, he looks like a dying man, with a consumption got, as is believed, by the pox, but God knows that the man is in a sad condition, though he finds himself much better since his coming thither, he says. W. Hewer rode with us, and I left him and the women, and myself walked to church, where few people, contrary to what I expected, and none I knew, but all the Houblons, brothers, and them after sermon I did salute, and walk with towards my inne, which was in their way to their lodgings. They come last night to see their elder brother, who stays here at the waters, and away to-morrow. James did tell me that I was the only happy man of the Navy, of whom, he says, during all this freedom the people have taken of speaking treason, he hath not heard one bad word of me, which is a great joy to me; for I hear the same of others, but do know that I have deserved as well as most. We parted to meet anon, and I to my women into a better room, which the people of the house borrowed for us, and there to dinner, a good dinner, and were merry, and Pendleton come to us, who happened to be in the house, and there talked and were merry.
After dinner, he gone, we all lay down after dinner (the day being wonderful hot) to sleep, and each of us took a good nap, and then rose; and Tom Wilson come to see me, and sat and talked an hour; and I perceive he hath been much acquainted with Dr. Fuller (Tom) and Dr. Pierson, and several of the great cavalier parsons during the late troubles; and I was glad to hear him talk of them, which he did very ingeniously, and very much of Dr. Fuller's art of memory, which he did tell me several instances of. By and by he parted, and we took coach and to take the ayre, there being a fine breeze abroad; and I went and carried them to the well, and there filled some bottles of water to carry home with me; and there talked with the two women that farm the well, at £12 per annum, of the lord of the manor, Mr. Evelyn (who with his lady, and also my Lord George Barkeley's lady, and their fine daughter, that the King of France liked so well, and did dance so rich in jewells before the King at the Ball I was at, at our Court, last winter, and also their son, a Knight of the Bath, were at church this morning). Here W. Hewer's horse broke loose, and we had the sport to see him taken again. Then I carried them to see my cozen Pepys's house, and 'light, and walked round about it, and they like it, as indeed it deserves, very well, and is a pretty place; and then I walked them to the wood hard by, and there got them in the thickets till they had lost themselves, and I could not find the way into any of the walks in the wood, which indeed are very pleasant, if I could have found them. At last got out of the wood again; and I, by leaping down the little bank, coming out of the wood, did sprain my right foot, which brought me great present pain, but presently, with walking, it went away for the present, and so the women and W. Hewer and I walked upon the Downes, where a flock of sheep was; and the most pleasant and innocent sight that ever I saw in my life--we find a shepherd and his little boy reading, far from any houses or sight of people, the Bible to him; so I made the boy read to me, which he did, with the forced tone that children do usually read, that was mighty pretty, and then I did give him something, and went to the father, and talked with him; and I find he had been a servant in my cozen Pepys's house, and told me what was become of their old servants. He did content himself mightily in my liking his boy's reading, and did bless God for him, the most like one of the old patriarchs that ever I saw in my life, and it brought those thoughts of the old age of the world in my mind for two or three days after. We took notice of his woolen knit stockings of two colours mixed, and of his shoes shod with iron shoes, both at the toe and heels, and with great nails in the soles of his feet, which was mighty pretty: and, taking notice of them, "Why," says the poor man, "the downes, you see, are full of stones, and we are faine to shoe ourselves thus; and these," says he, "will make the stones fly till they sing before me." I did give the poor man something, for which he was mighty thankful, and I tried to cast stones with his horne crooke. He values his dog mightily, that would turn a sheep any way which he would have him, when he goes to fold them: told me there was about eighteen scoare sheep in his flock, and that he hath four shillings a week the year round for keeping of them: so we posted thence with mighty pleasure in the discourse we had with this poor man, and Mrs. Turner, in the common fields here, did gather one of the prettiest nosegays that ever I saw in my life. So to our coach, and through Mr. Minnes's wood, and looked upon Mr. Evelyn's house; and so over the common, and through Epsum towne to our inne, in the way stopping a poor woman with her milk-pail, and in one of my gilt tumblers did drink our bellyfulls of milk, better than any creame; and so to our inne, and there had a dish of creame, but it was sour, and so had no pleasure in it; and so paid our reckoning, and took coach, it being about seven at night, and passed and saw the people walking with their wives and children to take the ayre, and we set out for home, the sun by and by going down, and we in the cool of the evening all the way with much pleasure home, talking and pleasing ourselves with the pleasure of this day's work, Mrs. Turner mightily pleased with my resolution, which, I tell her, is never to keep a country-house, but to keep a coach, and with my wife on the Saturday to go sometimes for a day to this place, and then quit to another place; and there is more variety and as little charge, and no trouble, as there is in a country-house. Anon it grew dark, and as it grew dark we had the pleasure to see several glow-wormes, which was mighty pretty, but my foot begins more and more to pain me, which Mrs. Turner, by keeping her warm hand upon it, did much ease; but so that when we come home, which was just at eleven at night, I was not able to walk from the lane's end to my house without being helped, which did trouble me, and therefore to bed presently, but, thanks be to God, found that I had not been missed, nor any business happened in my absence. So to bed, and there had a cerecloth laid to my foot and leg alone, but in great pain all night long.