The essays in this collection consider the diaries and journals of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Diaries and journals took many forms -depending on the occupation, gender, social status, and religious commitment of the writer. They ranged in their forms from brief notes related to family business, and national events in preprinted almanacs or the pages of a family Bible, to examinations of spiritual and material States in books dedicated to that purpose. Both Domestic and foreign travel afforded women and men reasons for keeping a diary, and these varied from highly scientific accounts to more personal considerations of the pleasures and discomforts of travel generically, the diary is situated uneasily, yet fascinatingly between literature and history. Once considered as a pure form of unstructured personal truth telling, the diary is now recognized as a form of writing created by historic conditions, governed by cultural imperatives, and based on literary models, and therefore reflects powerfully on its historical moments and the relationship between life as lived and life as represented in texts.