ENEC 313: Restoration and Eighteenth-Century British Literature
Exercise #1

Due at the start of class on Wednesday, January 30. Three to five pages, double-spaced.

Samuel Pepys clearly thought of his Diary, not just as a record of his daily activities, but as a work of art. Every entry is carefully shaped: composed like a miniature novel or play. Each entry both picks up themes from the running story of Pepys's life as told in the Diary as a whole and seems designed to stand on its own.

For this essay, choose any one entry from the selections from the Diary in the anthology and analyze how Pepys has gone about constructing that entry, shaping the entry to function as an independent unit, a small piece of literature. How does Pepys shape the entry to give order to the seeming randomness of a human life? How does he fold in memories of the past and anticipate an uncertain future?