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The Duke of Albemarle writes to 'the honoured S Pepys'

[PEPYS, Samuel (1633-1703). Diarist.]
Letter Signed from George Monck ['Your very assured freind & Servt. Albemarle') to Samuel Pepys , 1 page folio with address-leaf, Cockpitt [Whitehall], 8 June 1664. Addressed 'For the honoured / S Pepys Esqr. these / att the Navy Office . in Seething Lane.'
With Pepys's autograph endorsement: 'June. 8. 1664. / Duke of Albemarle to mee / abt. the souldrs. to bee / dispached in Sr. W. Rider's ship / to Tanger. / SP.'
'I recd yo[u]rs with an Account where the Eagle lies, butt noe Acct. where the other shippe lies that is to goe for Tangier, w[hi]ch I desire you will send mee notice of by the Bearer, and when the shippes will take in their provisions, and bee ready to take in the sould[i]ers and att what place they shall goe on board them that accordingly I may give order to the sould[i]ers to bee in a readiness: if Sr. William Ryder's shippe could carry one hundred men itt would doe well for there being one hundred men to goe out of the Tower this might goe together which would bee better for his Ma[jes]ties service & all our charges. I desire you to lett mee know if itt may bee done, and I shall order the men accordingly: I desire you will pardon my giving you this Trouble ...'
Tangier had been acquired from Portugal in 1661 as part of Charles II's marriage treaty with Catherine of Braganza. it was hoped, vainly as it turned out, that it would serve as an effective base against the depredations of Barbary corsairs. The maintenance and supply of the Tangier garrison proved extremely expensive, and England finally evacuated it in 1684. Albemarle and Pepys were members of the Privy Council Committee for Tangier, as was Sir William Rider, mentioned in the letter. On 9 June 1664 Pepys notes in his diary that he went to see Albemarle in person about the business of this letter: 'at night by coach to attend the Duke of Albemarle about the Tangier ship.' Pepys's opinion of Albemarle appears somewhat ambivalent: in 1665 he described him as 'a quiet, heavy man, that will help business when he can and hinder nothing.'
The Baltic merchant Sir William Rider had very much pleased Pepys earlier in 1664 by confiding that he had been keeping 'a journall of his life for almost these 40 years, even to this day.' It was to Rider's imposing Elizabethan country house at Bethnal Green that Pepys was to send his own diary and other valuables during the Great Fire two years later. The Eagle, the other ship to which Albemarle refers, had been hired by Pepys, managing, as he noted in his diary on 26 June 1664, to make '26£ profit today of my bargain for this ship - which comforts me mightily.'
[No: 23176]

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