Samuel Pepys

Samuel Pepys

In 1660 Samuel Pepys became Clerk of the Acts to the Navy Board and moved, with his wife Elisabeth, to live in a house alongside the Navy Office located in Seething Lane. It was here he made his name as an accomplished naval administrator and it was during the years he lived here that he wrote his diary.

Best known today for his diary, Samuel Pepys left us his first‐hand account of life in London in the 1660s; years which saw the restoration of the monarchy in 1660, the Great Plague of 1665 and the Great Fire of London in 1666.

Pepys became a man of influence and importance. He accompanied Charles II back from the Netherlands in May 1660 and he was the first person to inform the King of the Great Fire.

His breadth of interest and achievement is hugely impressive. In 1662 he was sworn in as a Younger Brother of Trinity House and was later to become an Elder Brother. He was twice elected Master of Trinity House and in 1677 he was appointed Master of the Worshipful Company of Clothworkers. He became Secretary to the Admiralty and an MP, and in the 1680s President of the Royal Society.

A fire at the Navy Office in 1673 led to Pepys moving from Seething Lane and from 1679 to 1688 he lived at number 12 Buckingham Street which lay south of the Strand.

On his death in Clapham in 1703 his body was brought for burial at the church of St Olave Hart Street which Pepys referred to as our own church. Both Samuel and Elisabeth are buried at St Olave’s where there are memorials to Elisabeth and Samuel.

A sculpture of Samuel Pepys is situated in Seething Lane gardens at the rear of 10 Trinity Square.