The lost Letters of Samuel Pepys, June 1667

Sir,                                                                                                                                                  16 June 1667
The Navy Board has taken evidence from the Commander of Sheerness fort. He asserts that the shooting of his battery went awry when the gunners saw that the girl pilots of the Dutch vanguard were pretty of countenance, contrary to the women of Chatham who they normally consort with, who are sour faced and fearsome of countenance.
As a consequence, the fort was lost, the harbour chain was breached, our ships burnt at anchor and His Majesty’s flagship was towed away as a prize.
The Commander also claims that these girls exclaimed that they had not been paid their due for two years since. If this is true, that the Britanni have not been paid for their services, we urge you to advise His Royal Highness to pay all that is owed.
If this is not done, the peace negotiations with the Dutch will be badly concluded for us, we will lose the next war and our colonies in New York, New Amsterdam and the West Indies will be lost.
Yours, SP

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