This much-celebrated biography of one of history's foremost memoirists is a triumph of accessible scholarship. In his daily diary, Samuel Pepys described life in Restoration England, documenting catastrophic events like the Great Plague (1665) and the Great Fire (1666) in mesmerizing detail and commenting on England's stormy political scene. Tomalin introduces readers to the man behind the memoir, examining his early career in the government, his years as a navy official and his connections to notables such as Isaac Newton, Christopher Wren and King Charles II. Pepys' personal life, which included one tumultuous marriage and numerous illicit amours, is also scrutinized here. Tomalin tells Pepys' story with energy and authority, creating a lively profile of this unique man of letters a writer with a shrewd eye, unmatchable wit and incomparable intellect.