aftermath

Monday 23 May 1664

Up and to the office, where Sir J. Minnes, Sir W. Batten, and myself met and did business, we being in a mighty hurry. The King is gone down with the Duke and a great crew this morning by break of day to Chatham. Towards noon I and my wife by water to Woolwich, leaving my wife at Mr. Falconer’s, and Mr. Hater and I with some officers of the yard on board to see several ships how ready they are. Then to Mr. Falconer’s to a good dinner, having myself carried them a vessel of sturgeon and a Lamprey pie, and then to the Yarde again, and among other things did at Mr. Ackworth’s obtain a demonstration of his being a knave; but I did not discover it, till it be a little more seasonable. So back to the Ropeyard and took my wife and Mr. Hater back, it raining mighty hard of a sudden, but we with the tilt kept ourselves dry. So to Deptford, did some business there; but, Lord! to see how in both places the King’s business, if ever it should come to a warr, is likely to be done, there not being a man that looks or speaks like a man that will take pains, or use any forecast to serve the King, at which I am heartily troubled. So home, it raining terribly, but we still dry, and at the office late discoursing with Sir J. Minnes and Sir W. Batten, who like a couple of sots receive all I say but to little purpose. So late home to supper and to bed.

it seems that the term ‘lunch’ had not been invented then because ‘dinner’ refers to any formal meal taken at whatever time of day. In the UK anyway we would not have two dinners per day unless we were exceptionally greedy but this terminology appears to be normal for someone in Pepys time.

‘Aftermath’ is used to describe the effects of an unpleasant event. You would not talk about the aftermath of a party unless there were fighting or disagreement. the term originates in the 16th century  after + math = a mowing, Old English mǣth. rather obscure but that’s the way it is.

By the way, a ‘sot’ is another way of saying a stupid person, a fool, someone who spends too much time inbibing. you can also be ‘besotted’ by somebody which implies a departure from your rational mind.

The same cannot be said of the people of Manchester who are demonstrating their spirit of togetherness and support by offering free food, accommodation, and transport.  I went out this morning and bought copies of the Daily Mirror and the Daily Mail which between them will give a pretty good down to earth account of Monday nights events. their photographers always get the most striking pictures. I felt very sorry for the woman who made an appeal for her daughter to return only to be told a few hours later that the daughter had passed away.

I think religious fanaticism takes on a new meaning here. I’m not quite sure what is religious about the action of blowing yourself up, apparently getting to heaven quicker, and killing a lot of other people with nuts and bolts. I just don’t get it.

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