John Evelyn.

Diary and correspondence, To which is subjoined the private correspondence between King Charles I. and Sir Edward Nicholas, and between Sir Edward Hyde, afterwards earl of Clarendon, and Sir Richard Browne (Volume 1) online

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at Dover ; I mentioned a French merchant there, and so
took my leave.f

6th. I embarked early in the packet-boat, but put my
goods in a stouter vessel. It was calm, so that we got
not to Dover till eight at night. I took horse for Canter-
bury, and lay at Rochester ; next day, to Gravesend, took
a pair of oars, and landed at Saves Court, where I stayed
three days to refresh and look after my packet and goods,
sent by a stouter vessel. I went to visit my cousin, Richard
Fanshawe, and divers other friends.

6th March. Saw the magnificent funeral of that arch-
rebel, Ireton, carried in pomp from Somerset House to
Westminster,accompaniedwith divers regiments of soldiers,
horse and foot; then, marched the mourners, General
Cromwell (his father-in-law), his mock-parliament-men,
officers, and forty poor men in gowns, three led horses in
housings of black cloth, two led in black velvet, and his
charging-horse, all covered over with embroidery and gold,
on crimson velvet ; then the guidons, ensigns, four heralds,
carrying the arms of the State (as they called it), namely,
the red cross and Ireland, with the casque, wreath, sword,
spurs, &c. ; next, a chariot canopied of black velvet and
six horses, in which was the corpse ; the pall held up by
the mourners on foot ; the mace and sword, with other
marks of his charge in Ireland (where he died of the

* Mr. Evelyn did afterwards procure him a situation,
j- The picture was afterwards sent accordingly, see p. 277.
T 2


plague), carried before in black scarfs. Thus, in a grave
pace, drums covered with cloth, soldiers reversing their
arms, they proceeded through the streets in a very solemn
manner. This Ireton was a stout rebel, and had been
very bloody to the King's party, witness his severity at
Colchester, when in cold blood he put to death those
gallant gentlemen, Sir Charles Lucas and Sir George
Lisle. My cousin, E/. Fanshawe, came to visit me, and
inform me of many considerable affairs. Sir Henry Herbert
presented me with his brother, mv Lord Cherbury's book,
" De Veritate."

9th. I went to Deptford, where I made preparation for
my settlement, no more intending to go out of Englandj
but endeavour a settled life, either in this or some other
place, there being now so little appearance of any change
for the better, all being entirely in the rebels' hands, and
this particular habitation and the estate contiguous to it
(belonging to my father-in-law, actually in his Majesty's
service) very much suffering for want of some friend to
rescue it out of the power of the usurpers, so as to preserve
our interest, and take some care of my other concerns ;
by the advice and endeavour of my friends, I was advised
to reside in it, and compound with the soldiers. This I
was besides authorised by his Majesty to do, and encou-
raged with a promise that what was in lease from the
Crown, if ever it pleased God to restore him, he would
secure to us in fee-farm. I had also addresses and cyphers,
to correspond with his Majesty and Ministers abroad :
upon all which inducements, I was persuaded to settle
henceforth in England, having now run about the M r orld,
most part out of my own country, near ten years. I
therefore now likewise meditated sending over for my
wife, whom as yet I had left at Paris.

14th. I went to Lewisham, where I heard an honest
sermon on 1 Cor. ii. 5 7, being the first Sunday I had
been at church since my return, it being now a rare thing
to find a priest of the Church of England in a parish
pulpit, most of which were filled with Independents and

15th. I saw the Diamond and Ruby launched in the
Dock at Deptford, carrying forty-eight brass cannon each ;
Cromwell and his grandees present, with great acclama-

1C52.] JOHN EVELYN. 077

18th. That worthy divine, Mr. Owen, of Eltham, a
sequestered person, came to visit me.

19th. Invited by Lady Gerrard, I went to London, where
we had a great supper ; all the vessels, which were innu-
merable, were of porcelain, she having the most ample and
richest collection of that curiosity in England.

22nd. I went with my brother Evelyn to Wotton, to give
him what directions I was able about his garden, which he
was now desirous to put into some form ; but for which he
was to remove a mountain overgrown with huge trees and
thicket, with a moat within ten yards of the house. This
my brother immediately attempted, and that without great
cost, for more than a hundred yards south, by digging
down the mountain, and flinging it into a rapid stream : it
not only carried away the sand, &c. but filled up the moat,
and levelled that noble area, where now the garden and
fountain is.* The first occasion of my brother making
this alteration was my building the little retiring place
between the great wood eastward next the meadow, where,
some time after my father's death, I made a triangular
pond, or little stew, with an artificial rock, after my coming
out of Flanders.

29th. I heard that excellent prelate, the Primate of Ire-
land (Jacobus Usher) preach in Lincoln's Inn, on Heb. iv.
16, encouraging of penitent sinners.

5th April. My brother George brought to Sayes Court
Cromwell's Act of Oblivion to all that would submit to the

13th. News was brought me that Lady Cotton, my bro-
ther George's wife, was delivered of a son.

I was moved by a letter out of France to publish the
letter which some time since I sent to Dean Cosin's prose-
lyted son ; but I did not conceive it convenient, for fear of
displeasing her Majesty, the Queen.

15th. I wrote to the Dean, touching my buying his
library, which was one of the choicest collections of any
private person in England.

The Count de Strade most generously and handsomely
sent me the picture of my wife from Dunkirk (see pp. 249,
275) in a large tin case, without any charge. It is of

* The fountain still remains.


Mr. Bourdon, and is that which has the dog in it, and is to
the knees, but it has been something spoiled by washing
it ignorautly with soap-suds.

25th. I went to visit Alderman Kendrick, a fanatic Lord
Mayor, who had married a relation of ours, where I met
with a Captain who had been thirteen times to the East

29th. Was that celebrated eclipse of the sun, so much
threatened by the astrologers, and which had so exceedingly
alarmed the whole nation that hardly any one would work,
nor stir out of their houses. So ridiculously were they
abused by knavish and ignorant star-gazers !

We went this afternoon to see the Queen's house at
Greenwich, now given by the rebels to Bulstrode White-
lock, one of their unhappy counsellors, and keeper of pre-
tended liberties.

10th May. Passing by Smithfield, I saw a miserable
creature burning, who had murdered her husband. I went
to see some 'workmanship of that admirable artist, Reeves,
famous for perspective, and turning curiosities in ivory.

29th. I went to give order about a coach to be made
against my wife's coming, being my first coach, the pattern
whereof I brought out of Paris.

30th. I went to obtain of my Lord Devonshire that my
nephew, George, might be brought up with my young Lord,
his son, to whom I was recommending Mr. Wase. I also
inspected the manner of camletting silk and grogramsatone
Monsieur La Dorees in Moor-fields, and thence to Colonel
Morley, one of their Council of State, as then called, wha
had been my schoolfellow, to request a pass for my wife's
safe landing, and the goods she was to bring with her out
of France ; which he courteously granted, and did me
many other kindnesses, that was a great matter in those

In the afternoon, at Charlton church, where I heard a
Rabinical sermon. Here is a fair monument in black
marble of Sir Adam Newton, who built that fair house
near it for Prince Henry, and where my noble friend, Sir
Henry Newton, succeeded him.

3rd June. I received a letter from Colonel Morley to the
Magistrates and Searchers at Rye, to assist my wife at her
landing, and show her all civility.

1652.] JOHN EVELYN. 279

4th. I set out to meet her now on her journey from
Paris, after she had obtained leave to come out of that city,
which had now been besieged some time by the Prince of
Conde's army in the time of the rebellion, and after she
had been now near twelve years from her own country,
that is, since five years of age, at which time she went over.
I went to Rye to meet her, where was an embargo on
occasion of the late conflict with the Holland fleet, the two
nations being now in war, and which made sailing very

On Whit Sunday, I went to the church (which is a very
fair one), and heard one of the canters, who dismissed the
assembly rudely, and without any blessing. Here, I stayed
till the 10th with no small impatience, when I walked over
to survey the ruins of Winchelsea, that ancient cinq-port,
which by the remains and ruins of ancient streets and
public structures, discovers it to have been formerly a con-
siderable and large city. There are to be seen vast caves
and vaults, walls and towers, ruins of monasteries and of a
sumptuous church, in which are some handsome monu-
ments, especially of the Templars, buried just in the
manner of those in the Temple at London. This place
being now all in rubbish, and a few despicable hovels and
cottages only standing, hath yet a Mayor. The sea, which
formerly rendered it a rich and commodious port, has now
forsaken it.

1 1th. About four in the afternoon, being at bowls on the
green, we discovered a vessel, which proved to be that in
which my wife was, and which got into the harbour about
eight that evening, to my no small joy. They had been
three days at sea, and escaped the Dutch fleet, through
which they passed, taken for fishers, which was great good
fortune, there being seventeen bales of furniture and other
rich plunder, which I bless God came all safe to land,
together with my wife, and my Lady Browne, her mother,
who accompanied her. My wife being discomposed by
having been so long at sea, we set not forth towards home
till the 14th, when hearing the small-pox was very rife in
and about London, and Lady Browne having a desire to
drink Tunbridge waters, I carried them thither, and stayed
in a very sweet place, private and refreshing, and took the
waters myself till the 23rd, when I went to prepare for


their reception, leaving them for the present in their little
cottage by the Wells.

The weather being hot, and having sent my man on
before, I rode negligently under favour of the shade, till,
within three miles of Bromley, at a place called the Pro-
cession Oak, two cut-throats started out, and striking with
long staves at the horse and taking hold of the reins, threw
me down, took my sword, and hauled me into a deep
thicket, some quarter of a mile from the highway, where
they might securely rob me, as they soon did. What they
got of money, was not considerable, but they took two
rings, the one an emerald with diamonds, the other an
onyx, and a pair of buckles set with rubies and diamonds,
which were of value, and after all bound my hands behind
me, and my feet, having before pulled off my boots ; they
then set me up against an oak, with most bloody threats
to cut my throat if I offered to cry out, or make any noise ;
for they should be within hearing, I not being the person
they looked for. I told them if they had not basely sur-
prised me they should not have had so easy a prize, and
that it would teach me never to ride near a hedge, since,
had I been in the mid-way, they durst not have adventured
on me ; at which, they cocked their pistols, and told me
they had long guns, too, and were fourteen companions. I
begged for my onyx, and told them it being engraved with
my arms would betray them ; but nothing prevailed. My
horse's bridle they slipped, and searched the saddle, which
they pulled off, but let the horse graze, and then turning
again bridled him and tied him to a tree, yet so as he
might graze, and thus left me bound. My horse was per-
haps not taken, because he was marked and cropped on
both ears, and well known on that road. Left in this
manner, grievously was I tormented with flies, ants, and
the sun, nor was my anxiety little how I should get loose
in that solitary place, where I could neither hear nor see
any creature but my poor horse and a few sheep straggling
in the copse.

After near two hours attempting, I got my hands to
turn palm to palm, having been tied back to back, and
then it was long before I could slip the cord over my wrists
to my thumb, which at last I did, and then soon unbound
my feet, and saddling my horse and roaming a while about,

1652.] JOHN EVELYN. 281

I at last perceived dust to rise, and soon after heard the
rattling of a cart, towards which I made, and, by the help
of two countrymen I got back into the highway. I rode
to Colonel Blount's, a great justiciary of the times, who
sent out hue and cry immediately. The next morning,
sore as my wrists and arms were, I went to London, and
got 500 tickets printed and dispersed by an officer of Gold-
smiths' Hall, and within two days had tidings of all I had
lost, except my sword, which had a silver hilt, and some
trifles. The rogues had pawned one of my rings for a
trifle to a goldsmith's servant, before the tickets came to
the shop, by which means they escaped ; the other ring
was bought by a victualler, who brought it to a goldsmith,
but he having seen the ticket, seized the man. I after-
wards discharged him on his protestation of innocence.
Thus, did God deliver me from these villains, and not only
so, but restored what they took, as twice before he had
graciously done, both at sea and land ; I mean when I had
been robbed by pirates, and was in danger of a consi-
derable loss at Amsterdam ; for which, and many, many
signal preservations, I am extremely obliged to give thanks
to God my Saviour.

25th. After a drought of near four months, there fell so
violent a tempest of hail, rain, wind, thunder, and light-
ning, as no man had seen the like in his age ; the hail
being in some places four or five inches about, brake all
glass about London, especially at Deptford, and more at

29th. I returned to Tunbridge, and again drank the
water, till 10th July.

We went to see the house of my Lord Clanrickarde at
Summer-hill, near Tunbridge (now given to that villain,
Bradshawe, who condemned the King). 'Tis situated on
an eminent hill, with a park ; but has nothing else extra-

4th July. I heard a sermon at Mr. Packer's* chapel at
Groomsbridge,t a pretty melancholy seat, well wooded and
watered. In this house was one of the French Kings J

* Clerk of the Privy Seal to King Charles I.

( In the parish of Speldhurst, in Kent, four miles from Tunbridge.
J The Duke of Orleans, taken at the battle of Agincourt, 4 Hen. V. by
Richard Waller, then owner of this place. Hasted's Kent, vol. I., p. 431.


kept prisoner. The chapel was built by Mr. Packer's
father, in remembrance of King Charles the First's safe
return out of Spain.*

9th. We went to see Penshurst, the Earl of Leicester's,
famous once for its gardens and excellent fruit, and for the
noble conversation which was wont to meet there, cele-
brt/^d by that illustrious person,' ; Sir Philip Sidney, who
there composed divers of his pieces. It stands in a park,
is finely watered, and was now full of company, on the
marriage of my old fellow collegiate, Mr. Robert Smith,
who married my Lady Dorothy Sidney, f widow of the
Earl of Sunderland.

One of the men who robbed me was taken; I was
accordingly summoned to appear against him, and, on the
12th, was in Westminster Hall, but not being bound over,
nor willing to hang the fellow, I did not appear, coming
only to save a friend's bail; but the bill being found, he
was turned over to the Old Bailey. In the mean time, I
received a petition from the prisoner, whose father I under-
stood was an honest old farmer in Kent. He was charged
with other crimes, and condemned, but reprieved. I heard
afterwards that, had it not been for his companion, a
younger man, he would probably have killed me. He was
afterwards charged with some other crime, but, refusing to
plead, was pressed to death.

23rd. Came my old friend, Mr. Spencer, to visit me.

30th. I took advice about purchasing Sir Richard's
[Browne] interest of those who had bought Sayes Court.

1st August. Came old Jerome Lennier, of Greenwich, a
man skilled in painting and music, and another rare
musician, called Mell. I went to see his collection of pic-
tures, especially those of Julio Romano, which surely had
been the King's, and an Egyptian figure, &c. There were
also excellent things of Polydore, Gruido, Raphael, and
Tintoretto. Lennier had been a domestic of Queen Eliza-
beth, and showed me her head, an intaglio in a rare
sardonyx, cut by a famous Italian, which he assured me
was exceeding like her.

* With this inscription over the door, "D. 0. M. 1625. ob. felicissimum
Caroli Principle ex Hispaiiia reditum Sacellum hoc D. D. I. P. ; " over it_the
device of the Prince of Wales. Hasted's Kent, vol. I., p. 432.

f Mr. Waller's Sacharissa, daughter of Philip, Earl of Leicester.

1652.] JOHN EVELYN. 283

24th. My first child, a son, was born precisely at one

2nd September. Mr. Owen, the sequestered divine of
Eltham, christened my son by the name of Richard.

22nd. I went to Woodcott, where Lady Browne was
taken with a scarlet fever, and died. She was carried to
Deptford, and interred in the church near Sir Richard's
relations with all decent ceremonies, and according to the
church-office, for which I obtained permission, after it had
not been used in that church for seven years. Thus ended
an excellent and virtuous lady, universally lamented, having
been so obliging on all occasions to those who continually
frequented her house in Paris, which was not only an hos-
pital, but an asylum to all our persecuted and afflicted
countrymen, during eleven years' residence there in that
honourable situation.

25th. I went to see Dr. Mason's house, so famous for the
prospect (for the house is a wretched one) and description
of Barclay's Icon Animarum.*

5th November. To London, to visit some friends, but the
insolences were so great in the streets that I could not
return till the next day.

Dr. Scarborough was instant with me to give the Tables
of Veins and Arteries to the College of Physicians, pre-
tending he would not only read upon them, but celebrate
my curiosity as being the first who caused them to be com-
pleted in that manner, and with that cost ; but I was not
so willing yet to part with them, as to lend them to the
College during their anatomical lectures; which I did,

22nd. I went to London, where was proposed to me
the promoting that great \vork, (since accomplished by
Dr. Walton, Bishop of Chester) Biblia Polyglotta, by
Mr. Pierson, that most learned divine.

25th December. Christmas-day, no sermon any where,

The book here referred to is in the British Museum, entitled, Joannis
Barclaii Icon Animarum," printed at London, 1614, small 12mo. It is written
in Latin, and is dedicated to Lewis XIII. of France, for what reason does
not appear, the author speaking of himself as a subject of this country. It
mentions the necessity of forming the minds of youth, as a skilful gardener
forms his trees ; the different dispositions of men, in different nations ; English,
Scotch, and Irish, &c. Cap. 2, contains a florid description of the beautiful
scenery about Greenwich ; but does not mention Dr. Mason, or his house.


no church being permitted to be open, so observed it at
home. The next day, we went to Lewisham, where an
honest divine preached.

31st. I adjusted all accompts, and rendered thanks to
Almighty God for his mercies to me the year past.

1st January, 1652-3. I set apart in preparation for the
Blessed Sacrament, which the next day Mr. Owen admi-
nistered to me and all my family in Sayes Court, preach-
ing on John, vi. 32, 33, showing the exceeding benefits
of our Blessed Saviour taking our nature upon him; He
had christened my son and churched my wife in our own
house, as before noticed.

17th. I began to set out the oval garden at Sayes Court,
which was before a rude orchard, and all the rest one entire
field of 100 acres, without any hedge, except the hither
holly-hedge joining to the bank of the mount walk. This
was the beginning of all the succeeding gardens, walks,
groves, enclosures, and plantations there.

21st. I went to London, and sealed some of the writings
of my purchase of Sayes Court.

30th. At our own parish-church, a stranger preached.
There was now and then an honest orthodox man got into
the pulpit, and, though the present incumbent was some-
what of the Independent, yet he ordinarily preached sound
doctrine, and was a peaceable man ; which was an extra-
ordinary felicity in this age.

1st February. Old Alexander Rosse (author of " Virgil-
ius Evangelizans," and many other little books) presented
me with his book against Mr. Hobbes's " Leviathan."

19th. I planted the orchard at Sayes Court; new moon,
wind west.

22nd. Was perfected the sealing, livery and seisin of
my purchase of Sayes Court. My brother, George Glan-
ville, Mr. Scudamore, Mr. Offley, Co. William Glanville
(son to Serjeant Glanville, sometime Speaker of the
House of Commons), Co. Stephens, and several of my
friends, dining with me. I had bargained for 3200/., but
I paid 3500/.

25th March. Came to see me that rare graver in taille-
douce, Monsieur llichett ; he was sent by Cardinal Maza-
rine to make a collection of pictures.

llth April. I went to take the air in Hyde Park, where

1653.] JOHN EVELYN. 2S5

every coach was made to pay a shilling, and horse sixpence,
by the sordid fellow who had purchased it of the State, as
they were called.

17th May. My servant, Hoare, who wrote those exqui-
site several hands, fell of a fit of an apoplexy, caused, as I
suppose, by tampering with ? (mercury) about an experi-
ment in gold.

29th. I went to London, to take my last leave of my
honest friend, Mr. Barton, now dying : it was a great loss
to me and to my affairs. On the sixth of June, I attended
his funeral.

8th June. Came my brother George, Captain Evelyn,
the great traveller, Mr. Muschamp, my cousin, Thomas
Keightly, and a virtuoso, fantastical Simons,* who had the
talent of embossing so to the life.

9th. I went to visit my worthy neighbour, Sir Henry
Newton [at Charlton] , and consider the prospect, which is
doubtless for city, river, ships, meadows, hill, woods, and
all other amenities, one of the most noble in the world ;
so as, had the house running water, it were a princely seat.
Mr. Henshaw and his brother-in-law, came to visit me, and
he presented me with a seleniscope.

19th. This day, I paid all my debts to a farthing; oh,
blessed day !

21st. My Lady Gerrard and one Esquire Knight, a very
rich gentleman, living in Northamptonshire, visited me.

23rd. Mr. Lombart, a famous graver, came to see my

27th. Monsieur Koupel sent me a small phial of his
aurum pOtabile, with a letter showing the way of adminis-
tering it, and the stupendous cures it had done at Paris ;
but, ere it came to me, by what accident I know not, it
was all run out.

17th August. I went to visit Mr. Hyldiard, at his house
at Horsley (formerly the great Sir Walter Raleigh's f),
where met me Mr. Oughtred, the famous mathematician ;
he showed me a box, or golden case, of divers rich and
aromatic balsams, which a chymist, a scholar of his, had
sent him out of Germany.

* Thomas Simons, a strange character, but most excellent modeller after
life, and engraver of medals.

f This is a mistake ; Mr. Hyldiard was of East Horsley, Sir Walter of


2lst. I heard that good old man, Mr. Higham, the
parson of the parish of Wottoii where I was born, and
who had baptized me, preach after his very plain way on
Luke, comparing this troublesome world to the sea, the
ministers to the fishermen, and the saints to the fish.

22nd. We all went to Guildford, to rejoice at the
famous inn, the Red Lion, and to see the Hospital, and
the monument of Archbishop Abbot, the founder, who
lies buried in the chapel of his endowment.

28th September. At Greenwich, preached that holy
martyr, Dr. Hewer, on Psalm xc. 11, magnifying the
grace of God to penitents, and threatening the extinction

Online LibraryJohn EvelynDiary and correspondence, To which is subjoined the private correspondence between King Charles I. and Sir Edward Nicholas, and between Sir Edward Hyde, afterwards earl of Clarendon, and Sir Richard Browne (Volume 1) → online text (page 29 of 46)