Samuel Pepys: The Unequalled Self
What can I say, Pepys is fascinating, and if you are interested in 17th century England, I think reading about him is must. I tried to read Pepys' diary along with this, but it wasn’t easy. Pepys had a way of writing everything he was ashamed of in Spanish or French, which had ...more
Pepys himself......... Certainly the diary reveals a character who is somewhat less attractive...... But then he sought to be completely honest in the diary. Perhaps in doing so he succeeded in leaving for all time a self portrait whose honesty few of us would want to emulate. Clearly ma ...more
just delightful. Gives hope that we can survive our own times. ...more
Tomalin gives a clearsighted account of the man's character, his career and political shenanigans and she does not shy away from his less ...more
Chapter One was absol ...more
She does the same for ...more
The book itself is hig ...more
Tomlinson does a brilliant job writing about Pepys and his time. She makes many smart insights about Pepys and life in general. And even though Pepys was quite a rogue at times, I still liked, loved the man. His perspective on life and his willingness to write so openl ...more
Pepys's diary is one of the strangest, most wonderful (in the literal sense, full of wonder), and most important historical artifacts ever left as the legacy of any writer--who wasn't even recognized as a writer in his lifetime. Tomalin must surely be the best literary biographer working today, as she joined this biography with her equally excellent capture of the real Charles Dickens a few years later.
One might first think it either dangerous or presumptuous to ...more
Pepys rose from being the son of a tailor and a housekeeper to become the key administrator of the English fleet, an advisor to ...more
A self-made man in the 1600's, Pepys exemplifies the new idea of the time of meritocracy; the placing of people ...more
There are these books that are referred to all the time in the web community; The Cluetrain Manifesto, The Tipping Point, The Wisdom of Crowds etc. I've read very few of them, but because they're name-checked so often in blog posts and presentations, I feel like I've sucked up their key points through a process of literary osmosis.
Samuel Pepys was like this too. Of course I knew who Pepys was. Only I didn't know he was such an important figure in the administration of the Navy. Or a not-very-dev...more
We get to know the diarist, his wife, his servants, his friends, his scientific and musical interests, his triumphs, his humiliations. And, of course, there's Pepys the sex pest.
We see Samuel Pepys as a witness of public events during a chaotic century for his country - the teenage Londoner and Cro ...more
Every child in England knows who Samuel Pepys was, particularly when we learn about the Great Fire of London. I didn't know much about Samuel Pepys himself. He lived during so much change. What amazing insight into this man and the diary he kept. Parts of this book were a hard slog. I particularly enjoyed t ...more
The chapter about his diary is of course the most interesting, but the research the author did to describe the life under the reign of Oliver Cromwell, then Charles II, James II and William&Mary is really amazing (the smell, the danger, the treason, the great fire of London, the Plague, the execution of Charles I and so on)
Samuel Pepys is a very lively character in this biography.
I've already read his diary, but I'm now eager to ...more
Claire Tomalin is an award-winning journalist, who has written extensively on English biography and history. She is the daughter of an English composer and a French academic and these ...more
She became literary editor of the 'New Statesman' and also the 'Sunday Times'. She has written several noted biographies and her work has been recognised with the award of the 1990 James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the 1991 Hawthornden Prize for 'The Invisible Woman The Story of Nelly Ternan and Charles Dickens'.