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Diary references to Lambeth and/or the Archbishop of Canterbury

Alec Samuels

4 JUNE 1663. I had stayed in Westminster hall a good while, where I heard that this day the Archbishop of Canterbury, Juxon, a man well spoken of by all for a good man, is dead and the Bishop of London is to have his seat.

19 JUNE 1663. Lay till 6 a_clock; then up and to my office, where all the morning, and at noon to the Exchange; and coming home, I met Mr.Creed and took him back and he dined with me; and by and by came Mr.Moore, whom I supplied with 30l And then abroad with them by water to Lambeth, expecting to have seen the Archbishop lie in state; but it seems he is not laid out yet.

2 MARCH 1664. This morning Mr.Burgby, one of the writing clerks belonging to the Council, was with me about business, a knowing man. He complains how most of the Lords of the Council do look after themselfs and their own ends and none the public, unless Sir Edward Nicholas. Sir G Carteret is diligent, but all for his own ends and profit. My Lord Privy Seale, a destroyer of everybody’s business and doth no good at all to the public. The Archbishop of Canterbury speaks very little nor doth much, being now come to the highest pitch that he can expect.

29 JULY 1667. Among other discourse, my Cousin Roger told us as a thing certain, that the Archbishop of Canterbury that now is doth keep a wench, and that he is as very a wencher as can be. And tells us it as a thing publicly known, that Sir Ch. Sedley hath had got away one of the Archbishop’s wenches from him, and the Archbishop sent to him to let him know that she was his kinswoman, and did wonder that he would offer any dishonour to one related to him. To which Sir Ch. Sedley is said to answer, “A pox take his Grace! Pray tell his Grace that I believe he finds himself too old, and is afeared that I should outdo him among his girls and spoil his trade.” But he makes no more of doubt to say that the Archbishop is a wencher, and known to be so, which is one of the most astonishing things that I have heard of.

10 MAY 1669. Mr.Wren took boat, thinking to dine with my Lord of Canterbury; but when we came to Lambeth, the gate was shut, which is strictly done at 12 a_clock and nobody comes in afterward, so we lost our labour;

14 MAY 1669. Up, and to St. James’s to the Duke of York and thence to Whitehall, where we met about office business; and then at noon to dinner with Mr.Wren to Lambeth, with the Archbishop of Canterbury; the first time I was ever there, and I have long longed for it, where a noble house, and well furnished with good pictures and furniture, and noble attendance in good order, and great deal of company, though an ordinary day, and exceeding great cheer, nowhere better, or so much that ever I think I saw for an ordinary table. And the Bishop mighty kind to me, particularly desiring my company another time, when less company there.

All of these references I found very rapidly using the splendid CD Rom produced by Club member Peter Skuse. It is a great help to research.