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

. (page 38 of 46)
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 38 of 46)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

study below, and robbed me to the value of 60/. in plate,
money, and goods ; this being the third time I have been
thus plundered.

26th March. I sat at the Commission of Sewers, where

* " The Czar of Muscovy sent an Ambassador to compliment King Charles
II. on his Restoration. The King sent the Earl of Carlisle as his Ambas-
sador to Moscow, to desire the re-establishment of the ancient privileges of
the English merchants at Archangel, which had been taken away by the Czar,
who, abhorring the murder of the King's father, accused them as favourers
of it. But, by the means of the Czar's ministers, his Lordship was very ill
received, and met with what he deemed affronts, and had no success as to his
demands, so that at coming away he refused the presents sent him by the
Czar. The Czar sent an Ambassador to England to complain of Lord
Carlisle's conduct ; but his Lordship vindicated himself so well, that the King
told the Ambassador he saw no reason to condemn his Lordship's conduct."
Relation of this Embassy by G. M ., authenticated by Lord Carlisle, printed

f By Mr. Dryden. It did not succeed on the first representation, but was
considerably altered to the form in which it now appears.


was a great case pleaded by his Majesty's counsel; he,
having built a wall over a water-course, denied the juris-
diction of the Court. The verdict went for the Plaintiff
[i.e. against the King].

30th April. Came his Majesty to honour my poor villa
with his presence, viewing the gardens and< even every room
of the house, and was pleased to take a small refreshment.
There were with him the Duke of Richmond, Earl of St.
Alban's, Lord Lauderdale, and several persons of quality.

14th Mar. Dined with my Lord Mordaunt, and thence
went to Barnes, to visit my excellent and ingenious friend,
Abraham Cowley.

17th. I saluted the old Bishop of Durham, Dr. Cosin, to
whom I had been land, and assisted in his exile ; but which
he little remembered in his greatness.

29th. Dr. Creighton preached his extravagant sermon
at St. Margaret's, before the House of C6mmons.

30th. This morning was passed my lease of Sayes Court
from the Crown, for the finishing of Avhich I had been
obliged to make such frequent journeys to London. I
returned this evening, having seen the Russian Ambassador
take leave of their Majesties with great solemnity.

2nd July. I saw the great Masque at Court, and lay that
night at Arundel-house.

4th. I saw lu's Majesty's Guards, being of horse and foot
4000, led by the General, the Duke of Albemarle, in extra-
ordinary equipage and gallantry, consisting of gentlemen
of quality and veteran soldiers, excellently clad, mounted,
and ordered, drawn up in battalia before their Majesties
in Hyde Park, where the old Earl of Cleveland trailed a
pike, and led the right-hand file in a foot-company, com-
manded by the Lord Wentworth, his son; a worthy
spectacle and example, being both of them old and valiant
soldiers. This was to show the French Ambassador,
Monsieur Comminges; there being a great assembly of
coaches, &c., in the park.

7th. Dined at the Comptroller's; after dinner, we met
at the Commission about the streets, and to regulate hack-
ney-coaches, also to make up our accounts to pass the

16th. A most extraordinary wet and cold season.

Sir George Carteret, Treasurer of. the Navy, had now

1663.] JOHN EVELYN. 375

married his daughter, Caroline, to Sir Thomas Scott, of
Scott's-hall, in Kent.* This gentleman was thought to
be the son of Prince Rupert.

2nd August. This evening, I accompanied Mr. Treasurer
and Vice-Chamberlain Carteret to his lately married son-
in-law^, Sir Thomas Scott, to Scott's-hall. We took barge
as far as Gravesend, thence by post to Rochester, whence
in coach and six horses to ScottVhall ; a right noble seat,
uniformly built, with a handsome gallery. It stands in a
park well stored, the land fat and good. We were exceed-
ingly feasted by the young knight, and in his pretty chapel
heard an excellent sermon by his chaplain. In the after-
noon, preached the learned Sir Norton Knatchbull,f (who
has a noble seat hard by, and a plantation of stately fir-
trees) . In the church-yard of the parish church I measured
an over-grown yew-tree, that was eighteen of my paces in
compass, out of some branches of which, torn off by the
winds, were sawed divers goodly planks.

10th. We returned by Sir Norton's, whose house is
likewise in a park. This gentleman is a worthy person,
and learned critic, especially in Greek and Hebrew. Passing
by Chatham, we saw his Majesty's Royal Navy, and dined
at Commissioner Pett's, J master-builder there, who showed
me his study and models, with other curiosities belonging
to his art. He is esteemed for the most skilful ship-
builder in the world. He hath a pretty garden and
banqueting-house, pots, statues, cypresses, resembling some
villas about Rome. After a great feast, we rode post to
Gravesend, and, sending the coach to London, came by
barge home that night.

18th. To London, to see my Lord Chancellor, where I
had discourse with my Lord Archbishop of Canterbury and
the Bishop of Winchester, who enjoined me to write to

* See Hasted's Kent," Vol. III., p. 293.

f Hasted's " Kent," Vol. II., p. 444.

J There is a monument for him in Deptford church, with a most pompous
inscription : " Q,ui fuit patriao decus, patrise sure magnum munimentum ;" he
not only restored our naval affairs, but he invented that excellent and new
ornament of the Navy which we call Frigate, formidable to our enemies, to us
most useful and safe : he was the Noah of his age, by this invention, like the
Ark, having almost snatched our dominion of the seas and our rights from


Dr. Pierce, President of Magdalen College, Oxford, about
a letter sent him by Dr. Goff, a Romish Oratorian, con-
cerning an answer to Dean Cressy's late book.*

20th. I dined at the Comptroller's [of the Household]
with the Earl of Oxford and Mr. Ashburnham ; it was said
it should be the last of the public diets, or tables, at Court,
it being determined to put down the old hospitality, at
which was great murmuring, considering his Majesty's
vast revenue and the plenty of the nation. Hence, I went
to sit in a Committee, to consider about the regulation of
the Mint at the Tower; in which some small progress
was made.

27th. Dined at Sir Philip Warwick's, Secretary to my
Lord Treasurer, who showed me the accounts and other
private matters relating to the revenue. Thence, to the
Commissioners of the Mint, particularly about coinage,
and bringing his Majesty's rate from fifteen to ten shillings
for every pound weight of gold.

31st. I was invited to the translation of Dr. Sheldon,
Bishop of London, from that see to Canterbury, the cere-
mony performed at Lambeth. First, went his Grace's
mace-bearer, steward, treasurer, comptroller, all in their
gowns, and with white staves ; next, the Bishops in their
habits, eight in number; Dr. Sweate, Dean of the Arches,
Dr. Exton, Judge of the Admiralty, Sir William Merick,
Judge of the Prerogative Court, with divers advocates in
scarlet. After divine service in the chapel, performed
with music extraordinary, Dr. French and Dr. Stradling
(his Grace's chaplains) said prayers. The Archbishop in
a private room looking into the chapel, the Bishops who
were Commissioners went up to a table placed before the
altar, and sat round it in chairs. Then, Dr. Chaworth
presented the commission under the broad seal to the
Bishop of Winchester, and it was read by Dr. Sweate.

* Of Dr. Pierce, who was also Dean of Salisbury, Wood gives a very unfa-
vourable account in his " Fasti." He appears to have been engaged in dis-
putes both in his College and at Salisbury. Dean Cressy was bred hi the
Church of England, and was appointed Canon of Windsor and Dean of
Leighlin, in Ireland, in the time of King Charles I., but from the troubles of
that time, had no benefit from either ; he afterwards became a Papist. The
book here referred to is " Exomologetis," or the motives of his conversion.
Wood's Fasti.

1663.] JOHN EVELYN. 377

After which, the Vicar- General went to the vestry, and
brought his Grace into the chapel, his other officers march-
ing before. He being presented to the Commissioners,
was seated in a great arm-chair at one end of the table,
when the definitive sentence was read by the Bishop of
"Winchester, and subscribed by all the Bishops, and pro-
clamation was three times made at the chapel door, which
was then set open for any to enter, and give their excep-
tions ; if any they had. This done, we all went to dinner
in the great hall to a mighty feast. There were present
all the nobility in town, the Lord Mayor of London,
Sheriffs, Duke of Albemarle, &c. My Lord Archbishop
did in particular most civilly welcome me. So going to
visit my Lady Needham, who lived at Lambeth, I went
over to London.

10th September. I dined with Mr. Treasurer of the
Navy, where, sitting by Mr. Secretary Morice, we had
much discourse about books and authors, he being a
learned man, and had a good collection.

2ith October. Mr. Edward Phillips came to be my son's
preceptor: this gentleman was nephew to Milton, who
wrote against Salmasius's " Defensio ; " but was not at all
infected with his principles, though brought up by him.*

5th November. Dr. South, my Lord Chancellor's chap-
lain, preached at Westminster Abbey an excellent discourse
concerning obedience to magistrates, against the pontifi-
cians and sectaries. I afterwards dined at Sir Philip
Warwick's, where was much company.

6th. To Court, to get Sir John Evelyn of Godstone off
from being Sheriff of Surrey, f

30th. Was the first anniversary of our Society for the
choice of new officers, according to the tenour of our patent
and institution. It being St. Andrew's day, who was our
patron, each fellow wore a St. Andrew's cross of ribbon
on the crown of his hat. After the election, we dined
together, his Majesty sending us venison.

16th December. To our Society, where Mr. P. Balle,
our Treasurer at the late election, presented the Society

* The lives of Edward and John Phillips, nephews and pupils of the poet,
were published in 1815, by William Godwin, 4to.
f In which he succeeded.


with an iron chest, having three locks, and in it 100Z.
as a gift.

18th. Dined with the gentlemen of his Majesty V bed-
chamber at Whitehall.

1663-4. 2nd January. To Barne Elms, to see Abraham
Cowley after his sickness ; and returned that evening to
London. ;<

4th February. Dined at Sir Philip Warwick's ; thence,
to Court, where I had discourse with the King about an
invention of glass-grenades, and several other subjects.-

5th. I saw " The Indian Queen " acted, a tragedy well
written,* so beautiful with rich scenes as the like had
never been seen here, or haply (except rarely) elsewhere
on a mercenary theatre.

16th. I presented my "Sylva" to the Society; and
next day to his Majesty, to whom it was dedicated ; also
to the Lord Treasurer and the Lord Chancellor.

24th. My Lord George Berkeley, of Durdans, and Sir
Samuel Tuke, came to visit me. We went on board Sir
William Pettv^s double-bottomed vessel, and so to London.

26th. Dined with my Lord Chancellor ; and thence to
Court, where I had great thanks for my " Sylva," and
long discourse with the King of divers particulars.

2nd March. Went to London, to distribute some of my
books amongst friends.

4th. Came to dine with me the Earl of Lauderdale, his
Majesty's great favourite, and Secretary of Scotland ; the
Earl of Teviot ; my Lord Viscount Brouncker, President
of the Royal Society ; Dr. Wilkins, Dean of Ripon ; Sir
Robert Murray, and Mr. Hooke, Curator to the Society.

This spring, I planted the Home-field and West-field
about Sayes Court with elms, being the same year that the
elms were planted by his Majesty in Greenwich Park.

9th. I went to the Tower, to sit in commission about
regulating the Mint ; and now it was that the fine
new-milled coin, both of white money and guineas, was

26th. It pleased God to take away my son, Richard,
now a month old, yet without any sickness of danger
perceivably, being to all appearance a most likely child ;

* By Sir Robert Howard and Mr. Dryden.

1664.] JOHN EVELYN. 379

we suspected much the nurse had over-lain him to our
extreme sorrow, being now again reduced to one : but
God's will be done !

29th. After evening prayers, was my child buried near
the rest of his brothers my very dear children.

27th April. Saw a facetious comedy, called " Love in a
Tub ; " and supped at Mr. Secretary Bennett's.

3rd May. Came the Earl of Kent, my kinsman, and his
lady, to visit us.

5th. Went with some company a journey of pleasure
on the water, in a barge, with music, and at Mortlake had
a great banquet, returning late. The occasion was, Sir
Robert Carr now courting Mrs. Bennett, sister to the
Secretary of State.

6th. Went to see Mr. Wright the painter's collection of
rare shells, &c.

8th June. To our Society, to which his Majesty had
sent that wonderful horn of the fish which struck a dan-
gerous hole in the keel of a ship in the India sea, which,
being broken off with the violence of the fish, and left in
the timber, preserved it from foundering.

9th. Sir Samuel Tuke * being this morning married to
a lady, kinswoman to my Lord Arundel of Wardour, by
the Queen's Lord Almoner, L. Aubigny, in St. James's
chapel, solemnized his wedding-night at my house with
much company.

22nd. One Tomson, a Jesuit, showed me such a collection
of rarities, sent from the Jesuits of Japan and China to
their Order at Paris, as a present to be reserved in their
repository, but brought to London by the East India ships
for them, as in my life I had not seen. The chief things
were, rhinoceros's horns ; glorious vests, wrought and em-
broidered on cloth of gold, but with such lively colours,
that for splendour and vividness we have nothing in Europe
that approaches it ; a girdle studded with agates and rubies
of great value and size ; knives, of so keen an edge as one
could not touch them, nor was the metal of our colour,
but more pale and livid ; fans, like those our ladies use,
but much larger, and with long handles curiously carved
and filled with Chinese characters : a sort of paper very

* A Roman Catholic.


broad, thin, and fine like abortive parchment, and exqui-
sitely polished, of an amber yellow, exceeding glorious
and pretty to look on, and seeming to be like that which
my Lord Verulam describes in his "Nova Atlantis;"
several other sorts of paper, some written, others printed ;
prints of landscapes, their idols, saints, pagods, of most
ugly serpentine monstrous and hideous shapes, to which
they paid devotion ; pictures of men and countries, rarely
painted on a sort of gummed calico, transparent as glass ;
flowers, trees, beasts, birds, &c., excellently wrought in a
kind of sleeve silk, very natural; divers drugs that our
druggists and physicians could make nothing of, especially
one which the Jesuit called Lac Tigridis : it looked like a
fungus, but was weighty like metal, yet was a concretion,
or coagulation, of some other matter ; several book MSS.;
a grammar of the language written in Spanish ; with innu-
merable other rarities.

1st July. Went to see Mr. Povey's * elegant house in
Lincoln's-Inn-Fields, where the perspective in his court,
painted by Streeter, is indeed excellent, with the vases in
imitation of porphyry, and fountains ; the inlaying of his
closet; above all, his pretty cellar and ranging of his

7th. To Court, where I subscribed to Sir Arthur
Slingsby's lottery, a desperate debt owing me long since
in Paris.

14th. I went to take leave of the two Mr. Howards,
now going for Paris, and brought them as far as Bromley;
thence, to Eltham, to see Sir John Shaw's new house, now
building; the place is pleasant, if not too wet, but the
house not well contrived, especially the roof and rooms too
low pitched, and the kitchen where the cellars should be ;
the orangery and aviary handsome, and a very large plan-
tation about it.

19th. To London, to see the event of the lottery which
his Majestyhad permitted Sir Arthur Slingsby to set up
for one day in the Banqueting-House, at Whitehall; I
gaining only a trifle, as well as did the King, Queen-

* A Mr. Povey, lived at Bellsize House, in Harapstead, in 171 8, who was a
coal-merchant, though not trained to the business ; he wrote many books,
some discovering indirect practices in the coal-trade, in government-offices,
&c. (See under 1676, Feb.) Park's Hist, of Hampstead, p. 156.

1664.] JOHN EVELYN. 381

Consort, and Queen-Mother, for near thirty lots ; which
was thought to be contrived very unhandsomely by the
master of it, who was, in truth, a mere shark.

21st. I dined with my Lord Treasurer at Southampton-
House, where his Lordship used me with singular huma-
nity. I went in the afternoon to Chelsea, to wait on the
Duke of Ormond, and returned to London.

28th. Came to see me Monsieur Zuylichem, Secretary
to the Prince of Orange, an excellent Latin poet, a rare
lutinist, with Monsieur Oudart.

3rd August. To London ; a concert of excellent musi-
cians, especially one Mr. Berkenshaw, that rare artist, who
invented a mathematical way of composure very extraor-
dinary, true as to the exact rules of art, but without much

8th. Came the sad and unexpected news of the death of
Lady Cotton, wife to my brother, George, a most excellent

9th. Went with my Brother Richard to Wotton, to visit
and comfort my disconsolate brother; and, on the 13th,
saw my friend, Mr. Charles Howard, at Dipden, near

16th. I went to see Sir William Ducie's house at Charl-
ton, which he purchased of my excellent friend, Sir Henry
Newton, now nobly furnished.

22nd. I went from London to Wotton, to assist at the
funeral of my sister-in-law, the Lady Cotton, buried in
our dormitory there, she being put up in lead. Dr. Owen
made a profitable and pathetic discourse, concluding with
an eulogy of that virtuous, pious, and deserving lady. It
was a very solemn funeral, with about fifty mourners. I
came back next day with my wife to London.

2nd September. Came Constantine Huygens, Signor de
Zuylichem, Sir Robert Morris, Mr. Oudart, Mr. Carew,
and other friends, to spend the day with us.

5th October. To our Society. There was brought a
new-invented instrument of music, being a harpsichord
with gut-strings, sounding like a concert of viols with an
organ, made vocal by a wheel, and a zone of parchment
that rubbed horizontally against the strings.

6th. I heard the anniversary oration in praise of Dr.


Harvey, in the Anatomy Theatre in the College of Physi-
cians ; after which, I was invited by Dr. Alston, the Pre-
sident, to a magnificent feast.

7th. I dined at Sir Nicholas Strood's, one of the Masters
of Chancery, in Great St. Bartholomew's; passing the
evening at Whitehall with the Queen, &c.

8th. Sir William Curtius, his Majesty's Resident in
Germany, came to visit me; he was a wise and learned
gentleman, and, as he told me, scholar to Henry Alstedius,
the Encyclopedist.

15th. Dined at the Lord Chancellor's, where was the
Duke of Ormond, Earl of Cork, and Bishop of Winchester.
After dinner, my Lord Chancellor and his lady carried me
in their coach to see their palace* (for he now lived at
Worcester-House, in the Strand), building at the upper
end of St. James's-street, and to project the garden. In
the evening, I presented him with my book on Architec-
ture,! as before I had done to his Majesty and the Queen-
Mother. His lordship caused me to stay with him in his
bed-chamber, discoursing of several matters very late, even
till he was going into his bed.

17th. I went with my Lord Viscount Cornbury to Corn-
bury, in Oxfordshire, to assist him in the planting of the
park, and bear him company, with Mr. Belin and Mr. May,
in a coach with six horses; dined at Uxbridge, lay at

18th. At Oxford. Went through Woodstock, where we
beheld the destruction of that royal seat and park by the
late rebels, and arrived that evening at Cornbury, a house
lately built by the Earl of Denbigh, in the middle of a
sweet park, walled with a dry wall.J The house is of
excellent freestone, abounding in that part, (a stone that
is fine, but never sweats, or casts any damp) ; it is of ample

* There is a large view of it engraved. The Chancellor, in the Continuation
of his Life, laments the having built it, on account of the great cost, and the
unpopularity which its magnificence created. He had little enjoyment of it,
as will be seen hereafter.

f " Parallel between Ancient and Modern Architecture, originally written
in French, by Roland Freart, Sieur de Chambray," and translated by Evelyn.
See his " Miscellaneous Writings," 4to, 1825, pp. 337348.

J This mansion was some years since the residence of Francis Almeric,
created Baron Churchill, brother of George, late Duke of Marlborough. a _

1664.J JOHN EVELYN. . 383

dimensions, has goodly cellars, the paving of the hall
admirable for its close laying. We designed a handsome
chapel that was yet wanting : as Mr. May had the stables,
which indeed are very fair, having set out the walks in the
park and gardens. The lodge is a pretty solitude, and the
ponds very convenient ; the park well stored.

20th. Hence, to see the famous wells, natural and artificial
grots and fountains, called Bushell' s Wells, at Enstone.*
This Bushell had been secretary to my Lord Verulam. It
is an extraordinary solitude. There he had two mummies ;
a grot where he lay in a hammock, like an Indian. Hence,
we went to Dichley, an ancient seat of the Lees, now Sir
Henry Lee's; it is a low ancient timber-house, with a
pretty bowling-green. My Lady gave us an extraordinary
dinner. This gentleman's mother was Countess of Roches-
ter, who was also there, and Sir Walter St. John. There
were some pictures of their ancestors, not ill painted ; the
great-grand father had been Knight of the Garter : there
was the picture of a Pope, and our Saviour's head. So we
returned to Cornbury.

24th. We dined at Sir Timothy TyrilTs, at Shotover.
This gentleman married the daughter and heir of Dr. James
Usher, Archbishop of Armagh, that learned prelate. There
is here in the grove a fountain of the coldest water I ever
felt, and very clear. His plantation of oaks and other
timber is very commendable. We went in the evening to
Oxford, lay at Dr. Hyde's, Principal of Magdalen- Hall,
(related to the Lord Chancellor), brother to the Lord
Chief-Justice and that Sir Henry Hyde, who lost his head
for his loyalty. We were handsomely entertained two
days. The Vice-Chancellor, who with Dr. Fell, Dean of
Christ Church, the learned Dr. Barlow, Warden of Queen's,
and several Heads of houses, came to visit Lord Gorubury
(his father being now Chancellor of the University), and
next day invited us all to dinner. I went to visit Mr. Boyle
(now here), whom I found with Dr. Wallis and Dr. Chris-
topher Wren, in the tower of the schools, with an inverted
tube, or telescope, observing the discus of the sun for the

Bushell published a pamphlet respecting his contrivances here ; and, in
Plott's Oxfordshire, is an engraving of the rock, the fountains, &c., belonging
to it. See an account of him in the History of Surrey, Vol. III., p. 523, and
Appendix cxlix.


passing of Mercury that day before it ; but the latitude
was so great that nothing appeared ; so we went to see the
rarities in the Library, where the keepers showed me my
name among the benefactors. They have a cabinet of
some medals, and pictures of the muscular parts of man's
body. Thence, to the new Theatre, now building at an
exceeding and royal expense by the Lord Archbishop of
Canterbury [Sheldon], to keep the Acts in for the future,
till now being in St. Mary's church. The foundation had
been newly laid, and the whole designed by that incom-
parable genius my worthy friend, Dr. Christopher Wren,
who showed me the model, not disdaining my advice in
some particulars. Thence, to see the picture on iSie wall
over the altar at All Souls, being the largest piece of fresco-
painting (or rather in imitation of it, for it is in oil of
turpentine) in England, not ill designed by the hand of
one Fuller ; yet I fear it will not hold long. It seems too
full of nakeds for a chapel.

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 38 of 46)