Pepy's Diaries

Published: 2022-03-25
Pepy's Diaries
Type of paper:  Literature review
Categories:  History Psychology Economics
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 855 words
8 min read

Pepys diaries were a personal daily record of contemporary events, the author Samuel Pepys kept the diary for nine years. The diaries first record was in January 1660 ending May 1669; the diaries provided a detailed account of events of Britain's history including King Charles II coronation, the Great Fire of London and the Great Plague. In the diaries, Pepys was a commentator who was observant, and this made his diary an historical document. Pepy's Diaries was initially written in shorthand, and currently stored at Magdalene College, Cambridge in Britain. Pepys' diary entry for 22 February 1664 shows a typical combination of a detailed account of events at the domestic level with the affairs of state at that time. It begins with a recorded account of Pepys shaving and going on with his daily routine, but he goes further to raise the issue of political concern. In the diary, he states that the acute financial shortages that were attributed to the reign of Charles II's reign were becoming an immense political concern. The revenue given to the monarch by Parliament was inadequate for the country to be run effectively. Also, the Anglo-Dutch wars of 1664-7 and 1672-4 - combined with an extravagant lifestyle of King Charles was affecting the income of the common citizens. The extravagance of the Royal class was opposed by many, and the introduction of a Hearth Tax as a way of collecting additional revenue resulted in dissatisfaction. It is evident that Pepys begins his diary at an important point in the history of Britain. Oliver Cromwell died in September 1658, passing the Kingship title to his son Richard. Edward Mountagu who was Pepys employer had close ties with Cromwells' reign and the 1656-7 attempt to make Oliver king led to Mountagu finding himself at odds with the authorities.

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The Samuel Pepys Diary opens with an entrance on January 1, 1660. The author at the age of twenty-seven years old was already well on his way to a rewarding career in the English crown service. It begins with "Blessed be God," . . . I was in very good health." Pepys carry on with a short-lived description of his family-himself, his wife, Elizabeth, and a servant named Jane. He then goes on to say "the condition of the State." These opening sentences are important in that they have many of the distinguishing subjects deliberated in the Diary. Research shows Pepys was evidently a religious and man-in a very overall and logical way; his journal entries usually start with a supplication to God, and he records a substantial expanse of soul-searching together with resolutions to have a better life. Another researcher notes that most health was as important to Pepys as his religion, which is discussed, revealed, and analyzed at consistent intervals. The early distress with his bladder made him have an obsessive awareness of the workings of his body, and his anxiety with numerous ailments is a prominent feature of the Diary.

Nicholas (1982) in his book, Memoirs and Literary Remains of Lady Jane Grey notes that There is much in Pepys' Diary that throws a separate and bright light over England's picture and its government through the period subsequent the Restoration. He further claims that if quitting the comprehensive path of history, and look for miniature information regarding antique manners and societies, the development of arts as well as sciences, and the numerous branches of ancient times, there has been no mine as rich as the volumes.

Criticizers of the world rarely unite; the new Pepys text produced a chorus: ''One of the glories of contemporary English publishing,'' it was hailed by the Times of London. The Guardian also claimed that it is the "Living details from the greatest sketchbook of any English century,''.

Deepak (2017) claims that Pepys wrote with candor and so his writings attracted readers from the first entries of his Journals. He talks of how Stevenson deduces a very apt image on Pepys' morality and writes that "But what of the gentleman, I do not say who purchased a rogueish tome, but who was embarrassed by doing so, nevertheless did it, and documented both the shame and the doing in his daily journal's daily pages?" This extraordinary quality is expounded in another personal matter when Mrs. Pepys wrote distinctly about grievances against her spouse. Pepys was scared that the world could read it; he destroyed the document and then extremely, writes the tale "with harsh truth."

Thomas Barnes, a professor of law and history at the University of California who was an Oxford-educated claimed that 'Pepys's diary is vivid reportage, the kind of journalism that can win a Pulitzer currently. He further says that Pepys was the A.J. Liebling and Ernie Pyle of the 17th century. He had the challenging pensiveness of Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr., and a capability to comprehend the human situation. In a calamity state, there was no better person. Unconditionally finely drawn acts of the 1665 Plague and the London Great Fire are all in Pepys.

Works Cited

Pepys, S. "The Diary." The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Vol. 1: 1660, 1971, doi:10.1093/oseo/instance.00174762.

---. "December." The Diary of Samuel Pepys, Vol. 7: 1666, 1971, pp. 393-427, doi:10.1093/oseo/instance.00174861.

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Pepy's Diaries. (2022, Mar 25). Retrieved from

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