Voices From The World Of Samuel Pepys by Jonathan Bastable
Published by David and Charles. £14.99.
BRIGHTON’S Jonathan Bastable leads us back to Pepys’ world, drawing not only from Pepys’ diary but other contemporary sources.
Bastable includes eyewitness accounts from world-shaking events such as the execution of King Charles I.
Bastable quotes the famous but gives voice to the unknown.
A merchant, Samuel Sainthill (corr), witnesses the hanging of exhumed bodies of those who signed the king’s death warrant.
Sainthill says of trial judge John Bradshaw: “I know his face, when the hangman, after cutting it off, held it up; of his toes I had five or six in my hand, which the prentices had cut off.”
Excerpts such as this from ghosts of the past bring English history to life.