Michael Drayton.

Universal classics library (Volume 10) online

. (page 5 of 34)
Online LibraryMichael DraytonUniversal classics library (Volume 10) → online text (page 5 of 34)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


plate to taste of; but, in my opinion, it falls short of those
ravishing varieties of deliciousness described in Captain
Ligon's history, and others; but possibly it might, or cer-
tainly was, much impaired in coming so far; it has yet a
grateful acidity, but tastes more like the quince and melon
than of any other fruit he mentions.

28th August, 1668. Published my book on "The Per-
fection of Painting, ^* dedicated to Mr. Howi rd.

17th September, 1668. I entertained Signor Muccinigo,
the Venetian Ambassador, of one of the noblest families
of the State, this being the day of making his public
entry, setting forth from my house with several gentle-
men of Venice and others in a very glorious train. He
staid with me till the Earl of Anglesea and Sir Charles
Cotterell (master of the ceremonies) came with the King's
barge to carry him to the Tower, where the guns were
fired at his landing; he then entered his Majesty's coach,
followed by many others of the nobility. I accompanied
him to his house, where there was a most noble supper
to all the company, of course. After the extraordinary
compliments to me and my wife, for the civilities he
received at my house, I took leave and returned. He is



44 DIARY OF London

a very accomplished person. He is since Ambassador at
Rome.

29th September, 166S. I had much discourse with Sig-
nor Pietro Cisij, a Persian gentleman, about the affairs of
Turkey, to my great satisfaction. I went to see Sir Elias
Leighton's project of a cart with iron axletrees.

8th November, 1668. Being at dinner, my sister Evelyn
sent for mc to come up to London to my continuing
sick brother.

14th November, 1668. To London, invited to the con-
secration of that excellent person, the Dean of Ripon,
Dr. Wilkins, now made Bishop of Chester; it was at
Ely House, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Cosin,
Bishop of Durham, the Bishops of Ely, Salisbury, Roch-
ester, and others officiating. Dr. Tillotson preached.
Then, we went to a sumptuous dinner in the hall, where
were the Duke of Buckingham, Judges, Secretaries of
State, Lord-Keeper, Council, Noblemen, and innumera-
ble other company, who were honorers of this incom-
parable man, universally beloved by all who knew him.

This being the Queen's birthday, great was the gal-
lantry at Whitehall, and the night celebrated with very
fine fireworks.

My poor brother continuing ill, I went not from him
till the 17th, when, dining at the Groom Porters, I heard
Sir Edward Sutton play excellently on the Irish harp;
he performs genteelly, but not approaching my worthy
friend, Mr. Clark, a gentleman of Northumberland, who
makes it execute lute, viol, and all the harmony an in-
strument is capable of; pity it is that it is not more in
use; but, indeed, to play w^ell, takes up the whole man,
as Mr. Clark has assured me, who, though a gentleman
of quality and parts, was yet brought up to that instru-
ment from five years old, as I remember he told me.

25th November, 1668. I waited on Lord Sandwich,
who presented me with a Sembrador he brought out of
Spain, showing me his two books of observations made
during his embassy and stay at Madrid, in which were
several rare things he promised to impart to me.

27th November, 1668. I dined at my Lord Ashley's
(since Earl of Shaftesbury), when the match of my niece
was proposed for his only son, in which my assistance
was desired for my Lord.



1668-69 JOHN EVELYN 45

28th November, 1668. Dr. Patrick preached at Convent
Garden, on Acts xvii. 31, the certainty of Christ's com-
ing to judgment, it being Advent; a most suitable dis-
course.

19th December, 1668. I went to see the old play of
*^ Cataline ** acted, having been now forgotten almost
forty years

20th December, 1668. I dined with my Lord Corn-
bury, at Clarendon House, now bravely furnished, espe-
cially with the pictures of most of our ancient and
modern wits, poets, philosophers, famous and learned
Englishmen; which collection of the Chancellor's I much
commended, and gave his Lordship a catalogue of more
to be added.

31st December, 1668. I entertained my kind neigh-
bors, according to custom, giving Almighty God thanks
for his gracious mercies to me the past year.

ist January, 1669. Imploring his blessing for the year
entering, I went to church, where our Doctor preached
on Psalm Ixv. 12, apposite to the season, and beginning
a new year.

3d January, 1669. About this time one of Sir William
Penn's sons had published a blasphemous book against
the Deity of our Blessed Lord.

29th January, 1669. I went to see a tall gigantic woman
who measured 6 feet 10 inches high, at 21 years old, born
in the Low Countries.

13th February, 1669. I presented his Majesty with my
" History of the Four Impostors ; '* * he told me of other
like cheats. I gave my book to Lord Arlington, to whom
I dedicated it. It was now that he began to tempt me
about writing *

15th February, 1669. Saw Mrs. Phillips' >



46 DIARY OF LONDON

1 6th March, 1669. To London, to place Mr. Chris-
topher Wase about my Lord Arlington.

iSth ^larch, 1669. I went with Lord Howard of Nor-
folk, to visit Sir William Ducie at Charlton, where we
dined; the servants made our coachmen so drunk, that
they both fell off their boxes on the heath, where we
were fain to leave them, and were driven to London
by two servants of my Lord's. This barbarous custom
of making the masters welcome by intoxicating the
servants, had now the second time happened to my
coachmen.

My son finally came from Oxford.

2d April, 1669. Dined at Mr. Treasurer's, where was
(with many noblemen) Colonel Titus of the bedchamber,
author of the famous piece against Cromwell, " Killing
no Murder.'^

I now placed Mr. Wase with Mr. Williamson, Secretary
to the Secretary of State, and Clerk of the Papers.

14th April, 1669. I dined with the Archbishop of Can-
terbury, at Lambeth, and saw the library, which was not
very considerable.

19th May, 1669. At a Council of the Royal Society
our grant was finished, in which his Majesty gives us
Chelsea College, and some land about it. It was ordered
that five should be a quorum for a Council. The Vice-
President was then sworn for the first time, and it was
proposed how we should receive the Prince of Tuscany,
who desired to visit the Society.

20th May, 1669. This evening, at 10 o'clock, was born
my third daughter, who was baptized on the 25th by the
name of Susannah.

3d June, 1669. Went to take leave of Lord Howard,
going Ambassador to Morocco. Dined at Lord Arling-
ton's, where were the Earl of Berkshire, Lord Saint John,
Sir Robert Howard, and Sir R. Holmes.

loth June, 1669. Came my Lord Combury, Sir William
Pulteney, and others to visit me. I went this evening to
London, to carry Mr. Pepys to my brother Richard, now
exceedingly afflicted with the stone, who had been suc-
cessfully cut, and carried the stone as big as a tennis
ball to show him, and encourage his resolution to go
through the operation.
i/^oth June, 1669. My wife went a journey of pleasure



i669 JOHN EVELYN 47

down the river as far as the sea, with Mrs. Howard and
her daughter, the Maid of Honor, and others, among
whom that excellent creature, Mrs. Blagg.*

7th July, 1669. I went toward Oxford; lay at Little
Wycomb.

8th July, 1669. Oxford.

9th July, 1669. In the morning was celebrated the
Encaenia of the New Theater, so magnificently built by
the munificence of Dr. Gilbert Sheldon, Archbishop of
Canterbury, in which was spent ;^25,ooo, as Sir Christo-
pher Wren, the architect (as I remember), told me; and
yet it was never seen by the benefactor, my Lord Arch-
bishop having told me that he never did or ever would
see it. It is, in truth, a fabric comparable to any of this
kind of former ages, and doubtless exceeding any of the
present, as this University does for colleges, libraries,
schools, students, and order, all the universities in the
world. To the theater is added the famous Sheldonian
printing house. This being at the Act and the first time
of opening the Theater (Acts being formerly kept in St.
Mary's Church, which might be thought indecent, that
being a place set apart for the immediate worship of
God, and was the inducement for building this noble
pile), it was now resolved to keep the present Act in it,
and celebrate its dedication with the greatest splendor and
formality that might be; and, therefore, drew a world of
strangers, and other company, to the University, from all
parts of the nation.

The Vice-Chancellor, Heads of Houses, and Doctors,
being seated in magisterial seats, the Vice-Chancellor's
chair and desk. Proctors, etc., covered with brocatelle (a
kind of brocade) and cloth of gold; the University Reg-
istrar read the founder's grant and gift of it to the Uni-
versity for their scholastic exercises upon these solemn
occasions. Then followed Dr. South, the University's
orator, in an eloquent speech, which was very long, and
not without some malicious and indecent reflections on
the Royal Society, as underminers of the University,
which was very foolish and untrue, as well as unseason-

* Afterward Mrs. Godolphin, whose life, written by Evelyn, has
been published under the auspices of the Bishop of Oxford. The
aflEecting circumstances of her death will be found recorded on pp.
126-27 of the present volume.



48 DIARY OF oxford

able. But, to let that pass from an ill-natured man, the
rest was in praise of the Archbishop and the ingenious
architect. This ended, after loud music from the corri-
dor above, where an organ was placed, there followed
divers panegj-ric speeches, both in prose and verse, inter-
changeably pronounced by the young students placed in
the rostrums, in Pindarics, Eclogues, Heroics, etc.,
mingled with excellent music, vocal and instrumental, to
entertain the ladies and the rest of the company. A
speech was then made in praise of academical learning.
This lasted from eleven in the morning till seven at
night, which was concluded with ringing of bells, and
universal joy and feasting.

loth July, 1669. The next day began the more solemn
lectures in all the faculties, which were performed in the
several schools, where all the Inceptor-Doctors did their
exercises, the Professors having first ended their read-
ing. The assembly now returned to the Theater, where
the TerrcB films ( the University Buffoon ) entertained the
auditory with a tedious, abusive, sarcastical rhapsody,
most unbecoming the gravity of the University, and that
so grossly, that unless it be suppressed, it will be of ill
consequence, as I afterward plainly expressed my sense
of it both to the Vice-Chancellor and several Heads of
Houses, who were perfectly ashamed of it, and resolved
to take care of it in future. The old facetious way of
rallying upon the questions was left off, falling wholly
upon persons, so that it was rather licentious lying and
railing than genuine and noble wit. In my life, I was
never witness of so shameful an entertainment.

After this ribaldry, the Proctors made their speeches.
Then began the music art, vocal and instrumental, above
in the balustrade corridor opposite to the Vice-Chancellor's
seat. Then Dr. Wallis, the mathematical Professor,
made his oration, and created one Doctor of music ac-
cording to the usual ceremonies of gown (which was of
white damask), cap, ring, kiss, etc. Next followed the
disputations of the Inceptor-Doctors in Medicine, the
speech of their Professor, Dr. Hyde, and so in course
their respective creations. Then disputed the Inceptors of
Law, the speech of their Professor, and creation. Lastly,
Inceptors of Theology: Dr. Compton (brother of the Earl
of Northampton) being junior, began with great modesty



i669 JOHN EVELYN 49

and applause; so the rest. After which, Dr. Tillotson,
Dr. Sprat, etc., and then Dr. Allestree's speech, the
King's Professor, and their respective creations. Last of
all, the Vice-Chancellor, shutting up the whole in a pane-
gyrical oration, celebrating their benefactor and the rest,
apposite to the occasion.

Thus was the Theater dedicated by the scholastic exer-
cises in all the Faculties with great solemnity; and the
night, as the former, entertaining the new Doctor's
friends in feasting and music. I was invited by Dr.
Barlow, the worthy and learned Professor of Queen's
College.

nth July, 1669. The Act sermon was this forenoon
preached by Dr. Hall, in St. Mary's, in an honest, prac-
tical discourse against atheism. In the afternoon, the
church was so crowded, that, not coming early, I could
not approach to hear.

12th July, 1669. Monday. Was held the Divinity Act
in the Theater again, when proceeded seventeen Doc-
tors, in all Faculties some.

13th July, 1669. I dined at the Vice-Chancellor's, and
spent the afternoon in seeing the rarities of the public li-
braries, and visiting the noble marbles and inscriptions, now
inserted in the walls that compass the area of the
Theater, which were 150 of the most ancient and worthy
treasures of that kind in the learned world. Now, ob-
serving that people approach them too near, some idle
persons began to scratch and injure them, I advised that
a hedge of holly should be planted at the foot of the
wall, to be kept breast-high only to protect them;
which the Vice-Chancellor promised to do the next sea-
son.

14th July, 1669. Dr. Fell, Dean of Christ Church and
Vice-Chancellor, with Dr. Allestree, Professor, with bea-
dles and maces before them, came to visit me at my lodg-
ing. I went to visit Lord Howard's sons at Magdalen
College.

15th July, 1669. Having two days before had notice
that the University intended me the honor of Doctor-
ship, I was this morning attended by the beadles be-
longing to the Law, who conducted me to the Theater,
where I found the Duke of Ormond ( now Chancellor of
the University) with the Earl of Chesterfield and Mr,
4



50 DIARY OF oxford

Spencer (brother to the late Earl of Sunderland). Thence,
we marched to the Convocation House, a convocation
having been called on purpose ; here, being all of us
robed in the porch, in scarlet with caps and hoods, we
were led in by the Professor of Laws, and presented re-
spectively by name, with a short eulogy, to the Vice-
Chancellor, who sat in the chair, with all the Doctors
and Heads of Houses and masters about the room, which
was exceedingly full. Then, began the Public Orator his
speech, directed chiefly to the Duke of Ormond, the
Chancellor; but in which I had my compliment, in course.
This ended, we were called up, and created Doctors ac-
cording to the form, and seated by the Vice-Chancellor
among the Doctors, on his right hand; then, the Vice-
Chancellor made a short speech, and so, saluting our
brother Doctors, the pageantry concluded, and the con-
vocation was dissolved. So formal a creation of honor-
ary Doctors had seldom been seen, that a convocation
should be called on purpose, and speeches made by the
Orator; but they could do no less, their Chancellor be-
ing to receive, or rather do them, this honor. I should
have been made Doctor with the rest at the public Act,
but their expectation of their Chancellor made them de-
fer it. I was then led with my brother Doctors to an
extraordinary entertainment at Doctor Mewes's, head
of St. John's College, and, after abundance of feasting
and compliments, having visited the Vice-Chancellor and
other Doctors, and given them thanks for the honor
done me, I went toward home the i6th, and got as far
as Windsor, and so to my house the next day.

4th August, 1669. I was invited by Sir Henry Peck-
ham to his reading feast in the Middle Temple, a pom-
pous entertainment, where were the Archbishop of
Canterbury, all the great Earls and Lords, etc. I had
much discourse with my Lord Winchelsea, a prodigious
talker; and the Venetian Ambassador.

17th August, 1669. To London, spending almost the
entire day in surveying what progress was made in re-
building the ruinous city, which now began a little to
revive after its sad calamity.

20th August, 1669. I saw the splendid audience of
the Danish Ambassador in the Banqueting House at
Whitehall.



1669-70 JOHN EVELYN 51

23d August, 1669. I went to visit my most excellent
and worthy neighbor, the Lord Bishop of Rochester, at
Bromley, which he was now repairing, after the delapi-
dations of the late Rebellion.

2d September, 1669, I was this day very ill of a pain
in my limbs, which continued most of this week, and
was increased by a visit I made to my old acquaintance,
the Earl of Norwich, at his house in Epping Forest,
where are many good pictures put into the wainscot of
the rooms, which Mr. Baker, his Lordship's predecessor
there, brought out of Spain; especially the History of
Joseph, a picture of the pious and learned Picus Mirandula,
and an incomparable one of old Breugel, The gardens
were well understood, I mean the potager. I returned
late in the evening, ferrying over the water at Green-
wich.

26th September. 1669. To church, to give God thanks
for my recovery.

3d October, 1669. I received the Blessed Eucharist,
to my unspeakable joy.

2 1 St October, 1669. To the Royal Society, meeting for
the first time after a long recess, during vacation, accord-
ing to custom; where was read a description of the pro-
digious eruption of Mount Etna ; and our English itinerant
presented an account of his autumnal peregrination about
England, for which we hired him, bringing dried fowls,
fish, plants, animals, etc.

26th October, 1669. My dear brother continued ex-
tremely full of pain, the Lord be gracious to him!

3d November, 1669. This being the day of meeting
for the poor, we dined neighborly together.

26th November, 1669. I heard an excellent discourse
by Dr. Patrick, on the Resurrection, and afterward,
visited the Countess of Kent, my kinswoman.

8th December, 1669. To London, upon the second
edition of my "Sylva,*' which I presented to the Royal
Society.

6th February, 1669-70. Dr. John Breton, Master of
Emmanuel College, in Cambridge (uncle to our vicar),
preached on John i. 27; "whose shoe-latchet I am not
worthy to unloose,'* etc., describing the various fashions
of shoes, or sandals, worn by the Jews, and other nations:
of the ornaments of the feet: how great persons had



53 DIARY OF LONDON

servants that took them off when they came to their
houses, and bore them after them : by which pointing the
dignity of our Savior, when such a person as St. John
Baptist acknowledged his unworthiness even of that mean
office. The lawfulness, decentness, and necessity, of
subordinate degrees and ranks of men and servants, as
well in the Church as State: against the late levelers,
and others of that dangerous rabble, who would have all
alike.

3d March, 1670. Finding my brother [Richard] in
such exceeding torture, and that he now began to fall
into con\nilsion-fits, I solemnly set the next day apart to
beg of God to mitigate his sufferings, and prosper the
only means which yet remained for his recovery, he being
not only much wasted, but exceedingly and all along
averse from being cut (for the stone); but, when he at
last consented, and it came to the operation, and all
things prepared, his spirit and resolution failed.

6th March, 1670. Dr. Patrick preached in Covent Gar-
den Church. I participated of the Blessed Sacrament,
recommending to God the deplorable condition of my
dear brother, who was almost in the last agonies of death.
I watched late with him this night. It pleased God to
deliver him out of this miserable life, toward five o'clock
this Monday morning, to my unspeakable grief. He was
a brother whom I most dearly loved, for his many vir-
tues; but two years younger than myself, a sober, pru-
dent, worthy gentleman. He had married a great fortune,
and left one only daughter, and a noble seat at Woodcot,
near Epsom. His body was opened, and a stone taken
out of his bladder, not much bigger than a nutmeg. I
returned home on the 8th, full of sadness, and to bemoan
my loss.

20th March, 1670. A stranger preached at the Savoy
French church; the Liturgy of the Church of England
being now used altogether, as translated into French by
Dr. Durell.

2ist March, 1670. We all accompanied the corpse of
my dear brother to Epsom Church, where he was de-
cently interred in the chapel belonging to Woodcot House.
A great number of friends and gentlemen of the country
attended, about twenty coaches and six horses, and in-
numerable people.



i67o JOHN EVELYN 53

2 2(1 March, 1670, I went to Westminster, where in the
House of Lords I saw his Majesty sit on his throne, but
without his robes, all the peers sitting with their hats
on; the business of the day being the divorce of my
Lord Ross. Such an occasion and sight had not been
seen in England since the time of Henry VHL*

5th May, 1670. To London, concerning the office of
Latin Secretary to his Majesty, a place of more honor
and dignity than profit, the reversion of which he had
promised me.

2ist May, 1670. Came to visit me Mr. Henry Saville,
and Sir Charles Scarborough.

26th May, 1670. Receiving a letter from Mr. Philip
Howard, Lord Almoner to the Queen, that Monsieur
Evelin, first physician to Madame (who was now come to
Dover to visit the King her brother), was come to town,
greatly desirous to see me ; but his stay so short, that he
could not come to me, I went with my brother to meet
him at the Tower, where he was seeing the magazines
and other curiosities, having never before been in Eng-
land : we renewed our alliance and friendship, with much
regret on both sides that, he being to return toward
Dover that evening, we could not enjoy one another
any longer. How this French family, Ivelin, of Evelin,
Normandy, a very ancient and noble house is grafted
into our pedigree, see in the collection brought from
Paris, 1650.

i6th June, 1670. I went with some friends to the Bear
Garden, where was cock-fighting, dog-fighting, bear and
bull-baiting, it being a famous day for all these butch-
erly sports, or rather barbarous cruelties. The bulls did

* Evelyn subjoins in a note: «When there was a project, 1669, ^or
getting a divorce for the King, to facilitate it there was bronght into
the House of Lords a bill for dissolving the marriage of Lord Ross, on
account of adultery, and to give him leave to marry again. This Bill,
after great debates, passed by the plurality of only two votes, and that
by the great industry of the Lord's friends, as well as the Duke's
enemies, who carried it on chiefly in hopes it might be a precedent and
inducement for the King to enter the more easily into their late propo-
sals; nor were they a little encouraged therein, when they saw the King
countenance and drive on the Bill in Lord Ross's favor. Of eighteen
bishops that were in the House, only two voted for the bill, of which
one voted through age, and one was reputed Socinian.» The two
bishops favorable to the bill were Dr. Cosin, Bishop of Durham, and
Dr. Wilkins, Bishop of Chester.



54 DIARY OF London

exceedingly well, but the Irish wolf dog exceeded, which
was a tall greyhound, a stately creature indeed, who
beat a cruel mastiff. One of the bulls tossed a dog full
into a lady's lap as she sat in one of the boxes at a con-
siderable height from the arena. Two poor dogs were
killed, and so all ended with the ape on horseback, and
I most heartily weary of the rude and dirty pastime,
which I had not seen, I think, in twenty years before.

1 8th June, 1670. Dined at Goring House, whither my
Lord Arlington carried me from Whitehall with the Mar-
quis of Worcester; there, we found Lord Sandwich, Vis-
count Stafford,* the Lieutenant of the Tower, and others.
After dinner, my Lord communicated to me his Maj-
esty's desire that I would engage to write the history of
our late war with the Hollanders, which I had hitherto
declined; this I found was ill taken, and that I should
disoblige his Majesty, who had made choice of me to do
him this service, and, if I would undertake it, I should
have all the assistance the Secretary's office and others
could give me, with other encouragements, which I could



Online LibraryMichael DraytonUniversal classics library (Volume 10) → online text (page 5 of 34)