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at all to him, he not knowing when it was done. It was performed by Moulins. Having cut the outward table, as they call it, they find the inner all corrupted, so as it came out without any force; and their fear is, that the whole inside of his head is corrupted like that, which do yet make them afraid of him ; but no ill accident appeared in the doing of the thing, but all with all imaginable success, as Sir Alexander Frazier did tell me himself, I asking him, who is very kind to me. To Sir G. Carteret's to dinner; and before dinner he tells me that he believes the Duke of York will go to sea with the fleete, which I am sorry for in respect to his person, but yet there is no person in condition to command the fleete, now the Captains are grown so great, but him. By and by to dinner, where very good company. Among other discourse, we talked much of Nostradamus 2 his prophecy of
I See 15th Jan. 1665.
2 Michael Nostradamus, a physician and astrologer, born in the diocese of Avignon, 1503. Amongst other predictions, one was interpreted as foreshowing the singular death of Hen. II. of France, by which his reputation was increased. In the 49th quatrain of his 9th century, the lines
“Gand et Bruxelles marcheront contre Anvers,
Sénat de Londres mettront à mort leur roi," may well be applied to the death of Charles I. Some coincidences in modern times are also curious. He speaks of the “ renovation de siècle," in 1792, in which year, in fact, the French revolutionary kalendar took its rise. The landing of Bonaparte from Elba, at Fréjus, was supposed to be predicted in cent. x. quatrain xxiii.
“Au peuple ingrat faites les remonstrances,
Par lors l'armée se saisera d'Antibe,
these times, and the burning of the City of London, some of whose verses are put into Booker's2 Almanack this year; and Sir G. Carteret did tell a story, how at his death he did make the town swear that he should never be dug up, or his tomb opened, after he was buried; but they did after sixty years do it, and upon his breast they found a plate of brasse, saying what a wicked and unfaithful people the people of that place were, who after so many vows should disturb and open him such a day and year and hour ; which, if true, is very strange. Then we fell to talking of the burning of the City; and my Lady Carteret herself did tell us how abundance of pieces of burnt papers were cast by the wind as far as Cranborne ;3 and among others she took up one, or had one brought her to see, which
Jodelle's clever distich on Nostradamus is worthy of a place, -
Et cum falsa damus, nil nisi nostra damus."
“Nostra damus, cum verba damus, quæ Nostradamus dat,
Nam quæcumque dedit, nil nisi vera dedit." He succeeded too in rendering assistance to the inhabitants of Aix, during the plague, by a powder of his own invention. He died at Salon, July, 1566.
" Roger L'Estrange, whose office it was to license the Almanacks, told Sir Edward Walker, " that most of them did foretel the fire of London last year, but hee caused itt to bee put out." - Ward's Diary, p. 94.
2 John Booker, an eminent astrologer and writing-master at Hadley. The words quoted by him from Nostradamus are (cent. i. quatrain li.) –
“Le sang du juste à Londres fera faute,
Bruslez par foudre de vingt trois les six,
De mesme secte plusieurs seront occis." 3 In Windsor Forest.
was a little bit of paper that had been printed, whereon there remained no more nor less than these words : “Time is, it is done.": Away home, and received some letters from Sir W. Coventry, touching the want of victuals to Kempthorne's ? fleete going to the Streights and now in the Downes : which did trouble me, he saying that this disappointment might prove fatal; and the more, because Sir W. Coventry do intend to come to the office upon business to-morrow morning, and I shall not know what answer to give him. This did mightily trouble my mind; however, I fell to read a little in Hakewill's Apology,3 and did satisfy myself mighty fair in the truth of the saying that the world do not grow old at all, but is in as good condition in all respects as ever it was as to nature.
4th. To the office, where Mr. Gauden comes, and he and I discourse the business well, and I think I shall get off well enough; but I do by Sir W. Coventry's silence conclude that he is not satisfied in my management of my place and the charge it puts the King to, which I confess I am not in present condition through my late laziness to give any good answer to. But here do D. Gauden give me a good cordiall
i Sir C. Wren, it is well known, took up a stone from the ruins of St. Paul's having the word "Resurgam" inscribed, which he adopted.
2 John Kempthorne, a distinguished naval officer, afterwards knighted, and made Commissioner at Portsmouth, which place he represented in Parliament. Ob. 1679. See some curious letters about his election, in the "Correspondence."
3 “An Apology or Declaration of the Power and Providence of God in the Government of the World." By George Hakewill, a learned divine. Oxford, 1627. The work was frequently reprinted.
this morning, by telling me that he do give me five of the eight hundred pounds on his account remaining in my hands to myself, for the service I do him in my victualling business, and 100l. for my particular share of the profits of my Tangier employment as Treasurer. This do begin to make my heart glad, and I did dissemble it the better, for when Sir W. Coventry did come, and the rest met, I did appear unconcerned, and did give him answer pretty satisfactory what he asked me; so that I did get off this meeting without any ground lost, but rather a great deal gained by interposing that which did belong to my duty to do, and neither Sir W. Coventry nor Sir W. Pendid oppose anything thereunto, which did make my heart very glad. Sir W. Coventry being gone, we at noon to dinner to Sir W. Pen, he inviting me and my wife, and there a pretty good dinner. So here I was mighty merry and all our differences seemingly blown over, though he knows, if he be not a fool, that I love him not, and I do the like that he hates me. dined, my wife and I out to the Duke's playhouse, and there saw Heraclius, an excellent play, to my extraordinary content; and the more from the house being very full, and great company; among others, Mrs. Stewart, very fine, with her locks done up with puffes, as my wife calls them : and several other great ladies had their hair so, though I do not like it; but my wife do mightily — but it is only because she sees
I See note to 8th March, 1664.
it is the fashion. Here I saw my Lord Rochester and his lady, Mrs. Mallet, who hath after all this ado married him : and, as I hear some say in the pit, it is a great act of charity, for he hath no estate. But it was pleasant to see how every body rose up when my Lord John Butler, the Duke of Ormond's son,' came into the pit towards the end of the play, who was a servant to Mrs. Mallet, and now smiled upon her, and she on him. I had sitting next to me a woman, the likest my Lady Castlemaine that ever I saw anybody like another; but she is acquainted with every fine fellow, and called them by their name, Jacke, and Tom, and before the end of the play frisked to another place. Home, and to my chamber, and there finished my Catalogue of my books with my own hand.
5th. Heard this morning that the Prince is much better, and hath good rest. All the talk is that my Lord Sandwich hath perfected the peace with Spayne, which is very good, if true. Sir H. Cholmly was with me this morning, and told me of my Lord Bellassis's base dealings with him by getting him to give him great gratuities to near 2,000l. for his friendship in the business of the Mole, and hath been lately underhand endeavouring to bring another man into his place as Governor, so as to receive his money of Sir H. Cholm
i Lord John Butler was born in 1643, and in January, 1676, married Anne, only daughter of Arthur Chichester, Earl of Donegal In April, 1676, he was created Earl of Gowran. Ob. s. p., 1677: see 25th November, ante.
2 See 25th November, ante.