Life In the Time of Plague: Samuel Pepys in London, 1663-66

(in multiple parts)

Part I of A Global Plague, Political Epidemiology, and National Histories

(Sixth in a series of articles on the implications of the coronavirus for our times, for human history, and for the fate of the earth.)

COVID-19 has made diarists of many of us, but the Englishman Samuel Pepys (1633-1703) was, to use a contemporary expression, far ahead of the curve.  Pepys, who lived through the Great Plague that struck London in 1665-66, as well as the Great Fire of London that over the course of five days in September 1666 gutted the old City of London, was a prodigious keeper of a diary that remains unrivalled in its depiction of the daily life of a well-heeled and influential man living in times of turmoil and pestilence.  Pepys might well have been Continue reading