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Full text of "The Diary Of John Evelyn Vol-2"

1681                                JOHN EVELYN                                  I$9

I should not serve Sir Stephen by proposing it, like a
friend; this being now his only daughter, well-bred, and
likely to receive a large share of her father's opulence.
Lord Sunderland was much sunk in his estate by gaming
and other prodigalities, and was now no longer Secretary
of State, having fallen into displeasure of the King for sid-
ing with the Commons about the succession; but which
I am assured, he did not do out of his own inclination
or for the preservation of the Protestant religion, but by-
mistaking the ability of the party to carry it. However
so earnest and importunate was the Countess, that I did
mention it to Sir Stephen, who said it was too great an
honor, that his daughter was very young, as well as my
Lord, and he was resolved never to marry her without
the parties' mutual liking; with other objections which I
neither would or could contradict. He desired me to ex-
press to the Countess the great sense he had of the honor
done him, that his daughter and her son were too young,
that he would do nothing without her liking, which he
did not think her capable of expressing judiciously, till
she was sixteen or seventeen years of age, of which she
now wanted four years, and that I would put it off as
civilly as I could.

2oth May, 1681. Our new curate preached, a pretty
hopeful young man, yet somewhat raw, newly come from
college, full of Latin sentences, which in time will wear
off. He read prayers very well.

25th May, 1681. There came to visit me Sir William
Walter and Sir John Elowes: and the next day, the Earl
of Kildare, a young gentleman related to my wife, and
other company. There had scarce fallen any rain since
Christmas.

2d June, 1681. I went to Hampton Court, when the
Surrey gentlemen presented their addresses to his Majesty,
whose hand I kissed, introduced by the Duke of Albe-
marle. Being at the Privy Council, I took another occa-
sion of discoursing with Sir Stephen Fox about his
daughter and to revive that business, and at least brought
it to this: That in case the young people liked one the
other, after four years, he first desiring to see a particular
of my Lord's present estate if I could transmit it to him
privately, he would make her portion ^"14,000, though to
all appearance he might likely make it ^5 0,000 as easily, of the Tower to bring forthy, I was commodiouslyh expectation