The Book, Cat, & Cat Book Lovers Almanac

of historical trivia regarding books, cats, and other animals. Actually this blog has evolved so that it is described better as a blog about cats in history and culture. And we take as a theme the advice of Aldous Huxley: If you want to be a writer, get some cats. Don't forget to see the archived articles linked at the bottom of the page.

May 26, 2016

May 26, 1703

Samuel Pepys, (February 23, 1633 to May 26, 1703) authored a diary, the entries of which yield unprecedented glimpses into Restoration London. Pepys was related to the Earl of Sandwich and employed at the Admiralty.

Pepys describes his amorous adventures, in the diary and regretting them. He also felt bad for spending so much money on books: his collection at his death numbered about three thousand and are now at Cambridge, the university from which he graduated in the 1650s.

Fire was a serious concern for Londoners. According to an Oxford University Press blog post:

Fire was common enough to make it worthwhile investing in precautions. Writing about his library in the 1690s, Pepys explained that his bookcases were designed “To bee taken in Peeces, in case of Fire” and for “Easiness of Transportation."

Elsewhere in this blog I have mentioned Pepys' cats. Also worth recounting is that Pepys had a lion:

In 1674, Samuel Martin, a consul in Algiers, sent Pepys “a Tame Lion”. Pepys wrote back to report that the beast was now living with him at the Admiralty Office in Westminster. The lion proved a good houseguest, being “as tame as you sent him, and as good company”.

Good company and good press.

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