Cecil Papers: March 1600, 1-15

Pages 46-71

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 10, 1600. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1904.

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March 1600, 1–15

Thomas, Lord Scrope to Sir John Stanhope.
1599/1600, March 1. I enclose the letter sent by the master of the Dutch ship, that lately came to our coast here, to the factor at London, whereby it may be seen if it be the Queen's friends. I think if the ship were searched, she would prove to be for Ireland and some money in her. The men shall not be enlarged till I know her pleasure.
Also I wish to hear whether my leave be gotten and what chance there is of it. Mr. Lowther comes here on Tuesday and I go to York Assizes, and thence to London, hoping to hear of my leave gotten on the way. I have made no means to procure the same but you.—Carlisle, 1 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. 1½ pp. (68. 61.)
Lord Cobham to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 1. Enclosing Sir Henry Cobham's instructions for his negotiations with the King of Spain, and asking for their return.—“From my house in the Blackfriars,” 1 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. ½ p. (68. 62.)
Robert Beale to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 1. The Masters of the Bequests will inform you what has been done with the merchants. I, being by a fall upon my back unable to attend, have presumed out of the Burgundian and Spanish treaties to draw up the enclosed project for a treaty.—London, 1 March, 1599.
Signed. ½ p. (68. 63.)
John Veuara to Lord Willoughby.
1599/1600, March 1. I have remained in your lord wardenry during the King of Scots' abode in Tyvidale, where things have happened diversely. At my first coming, I wrote to Sir Robert Kerr, that we might agree upon a day for justice, yet publicly to avoid all sinister conclusions, with this letter I sent one in that I thought was trusty; directing him to observe the purpose of this hunting, what English resorted to the King, and what the King thought of my coming to the Border. Sir Robert Kerr was glad of my letter and held himself satisfied by the party's report of my number, which was only 16 horse, it having been reported that I had all the garrison of Berwick with me. I heard that “Lacels,” whom Sir William Bowes commended to you, was with the King, and had much private talk with him in the field; that there was another which came privately to Sesforth and remained there till the King went thither yesterday. His name I cannot learn, but he is said to be very like Cuthbert Armorer, saving that his head and beard are not so white; he came in through West Teviotdale. Upon Tuesday I came to Carham and sent in another upon pretence to excuse my coming so near. The King was jealous, crediting those who said my number was three or four score. Next morning the King hunted within two miles of Carham. I showed myself on the Watch hill in Carham Field, having none with me but the 16 of Berwick and two of the country. Sir Robert Kerr sent Andrew Kerr of Roxborough, entreating me to show Sir George Elveston, one of the King's Secretaries, and Mr. Robert Seward (who wished to see England), what courtesy I could. I went to meet them and showed them Wark Castle, that part where the artillery lies. Sir George made a shot; I entertained them to their contentment, and at their farewell the gunners discharged two great pieces. Then I conveyed them to the debatable ground and sent Cuthbert Armorer and two gentlemen to see them safe to their countrymen. I continued in the field till four o'clock. And because I was loth our horses should take cold, I put the few I had in order, and stirred them up and down. This was ill taken, some urging that I braved the King, the rather because a man of mine fondly drew his sword and flourished it a little. The Earl of Orkney said, “Fie for two hours of day,” and some would have had a train laid by hunting in English ground, thereby to draw me further upon the Border; and then should 100 horse come over at Fierborne Mill to cut between me and home. That night, after my return to Carham, as I was riding by the river, Captain Preston with others had been drinking at Castrem (in Scotland) and caused a trumpet to be sounded. I supposing it had been Sir Alexander Hume, went towards him, but seeing my mistake withdrew to my lodging, having before sent my company to Wark. This he reported to the King, saying that it was a shame I should be suffered to come and continue in this manner, seeing I had wronged him so much before. That night also divers of Captain Preston's companions came to Carham to drink, and were so “whittled” (fn. ) before, that though they drank only once, the King's chamberlain (as they call Ramsey) fell off his horse, and they were scarce fit to carry him away. My men shooting off their pistols that had been four days charged, these Scots would needs have it that we shot at them. I pacified the matter, but these things altogether angered the King, who greatly blamed Sir Robert Kerr. Whereupon that night, one Pott of Sprouston, a special man of Sir Robert's, was sent to Carham with sixteen horsemen to see what I did. They found all so quiet that I think they dislike what they did. For I sent to Sir Robert, complaining of such courses, considering how careful I was that all should be quiet. And lest their excessive drinking should occasion some mischief, I withdrew past the March to Fourd that night. The next day the King went towards Edinburgh and I returned home. Sir Robert will speak with me so soon as he hath brought the King to Edinburgh. I have sent you the Association; I could not procure it but by Lesterick's means, who went to Edinburgh for it. Your Lordship may think that I have devoured Erasmus' “De copia verborum” by this unmeasurable letter.—Berwick, 1 March, '99.
Signed. Seal. 2½ pp. (68. 64.)
Thomas, Lord Burghley to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 1. My long silence hath been in expectation of your letters, whereby to have known the end of this great cause that hath so long hung in balance, which I hear by others is now calmed by an humble submission by letter made by the Earl and presented by you to her Majesty; which charitable deeds I doubt not will stop the tongues of the adversary, which thought with railing to have feared both Queen and Council. I hope this placable proceeding prognosticates like success in the treaty of Peace, which I think will be a very good thing for the Queen and the people.
But now I would move you for myself, to obtain leave from the Queen for me to come up this spring. I have left many things imperfected, and have a suit depending in Chancery of five thousand pounds of a bond I am sued in by old Mr. Reade. Moreover, my health requires me to take some physic this spring, which I dare not do here, because there is none that is acquainted with the state of my body, neither dare I trust any potycarye in this town, being none but that are recusant. This country is in good order. I doubt not that soon 18 out of every 20 recusants will come to the church. In the worst parts of this shire, I hear five hundred have come in this three weeks, so that a notable papist complained that the common people are declining from them.—York, 1st March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. 2½ pp. (68. 66.)
Lucy, Marchioness of Winchester to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 1. I am intreated to move you for your favour towards Mr. Browne of Frampton in Dorsetshire, who deserved well of the late Marquess and professes much respect to my Lord and me. My Lord Marquess heretofore, during his lieutenancy in that county, authorised him to be a colonel in the division of Bridport, with allowance from the Council, a place of some credit though of great charge, which duty he did well perform. But since the decease of the late Marquess, commissioners for the musters have been appointed, and the Council have retained Mr. Browne in his former place, whose suit by me is that he may be joined in the commission for musters, thereby to preserve his ancient authority, or that he may be dismissed with such ceremony for his credit, as may be fit.—Basing, 1st of March, 1599. Signed. “Lucie Winchester.”
Seal. 1 p. (68. 69.)
Thomas, Lord Scrope to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 2. I have received your letter, whereby I understand that you have moved with her Majesty for my leave to come up, and found no inclination in her to grant it till St. George's Day. You shall understand that I have appointed Mr. Richard Lowther deputy, and comes here on Tuesday next, against which time I go hence towards London, where I thought to be within ten days after, and have broken up my house. Therefore I mean to stay at Sanger till I hear from you again. As to the Dutch ship, I know no more, but the mariners shall stay the Queen's pleasure.—Carlisle, 2 March, '99.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (68. 68.)
The Attorney-General (Coke) to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 2. You command me to advertise what time I think fit for others to come in; 2, into what band men shall enter; 3, to whose use; 4, to what value.
Your commandment is able to bring me out of my proper element (that never traded for these commodities) in novum orbem But for the first, I think that six months is, considering the circumstances, a convenient time. To the 2nd and 3rd, they be already expressed in the book. And for the last (which is not least), I think 500l. band were sufficient, for I take it, the subsidy and custom of any one man will nothing near amount to so much in an old man's life; besides, after the band forfeited, the wares themselves are forfeited, whereof the patentee is to have the moiety. As I desire the continuance of your favour, I have done my best endeavour, in drawing this book, to perform your commandment, and to do my Lord any service I conveniently could, and yet to avoid the odious name of a monopoly, at this time specially; wherein, howsoever it be taken, liberavi animam meant—From Holborn, 2o Marcii, '99. [PS.]—When you shall find opportunity, 1 humbly pray you remember your poor niece's security.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (178. 129.)
Lord Willoughby to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 2. My servant Waterhouse hath now found the means to have her Majesty moved in his behalf, who hath graciously left him and his suit to your favour; whereof he hath now great confidence since it resteth in your hands. I beseech you, as your weighty affairs may permit, think upon the poor gentleman.—London, the 2nd of March, 1599.
Signed. ⅓ p. (178. 137.)
Edmond Standen to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 3. I am grateful to you, since I hear from a friend that when my poor self was named about the moneys lately taxed for the Irish, you did say and make stay in my behalf, when others were pressing to pain me in that purpose, whom I have never had to do with otherwise than commending them to Almighty God in my prayers amongst other superior persons. Yet these hard and undeserved speeches do grieve me; but you with your own hand did put but 15l. on me, whereas the double of that was pressed. Yet was I written to for 20l and have paid it, notwithstanding I had contributed in Middlesex and Berkshire before. And this was higher than others within this ring did pay, which look, and so may, higher than I; who take much pains to serve the Queen in this court without fee. But doing my duty faithfully, I would be glad to receive good usage, and not to be daunted by the contrary.—3rd March, '99. At the Rolls.
Signed. 1 p. (68. 70.)
Sir George Carew to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600,. March 3. This gentleman, Mr. Burke, brother to the late Lord Burke slain in Munster, having business of suits in England, hath desired me to accompany him with my letters unto you, which because he is well reported of in this country, I could not deny. If his suits be reasonable, the favour you shall shew him I think will prove well bestowed, for it is said he is forward in doing of service.—Dublin, this third of March, 1599.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“In favour of the Lord Burke.” 1 p. (178. 130.)
Roger Beaple, Mayor of Barnstaple, to the Privy Council.
1599/1600, March 4. Upon the coming to this town of Captain Abrye York, appointed to be the conductor of the 200 soldiers from this port to Knockfergus in Ireland, I have joined with him in reviewing the men and their arms. The ships for the transportation of the soldiers are ready, so that, God continuing the wind fair, they will sail on Saturday, till when they await a morning tide.—Barnstaple, 4 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. On the back :—“Hartford Bridge at 9 in the morning the 9 of March. Staines at 2 in the afternoon.” 1 p. (68. 71.)
Stephen Le Sieur to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 4. Your favourable acceptance of my late letters encourageth me to trouble you with other letters since come out of Germany, whereof I have made the extract here inclosed. I also send herewith the copy of a certain proposition made by the Admiral d'Arragon to the Emperor in the year 1596, whereupon the imperial mandate against her Majesty's true subjects, and other pernicious practices tending to the subversion of true religion, kings and princes that profess the same, shortly after succeeded; the one and the other not unfit to be remembered at this time in which the King of Spain and his ministers, authors and solicitors of the said mandate, seek a reconciliation and peace with her Majesty.—This 4th of March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal broken. Injured. 1 p. (178. 131.)
Lord Willoughby to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 5. I even now received this letter, I know not how, mistakings may be of one side or other. I think the gentleman meant well; but being heretofore a principal party in Ashfield's apprehension, he was the more subject now to exception. I hope there is nothing in this that is not already ended; but if there were better or worse, I would conceal nothing from you whose I rest.—5 March (Feb. erased).
Holograph. Endorsed :—“5 Feb.” 1 p. (68. 20.)
Elizabeth, Dowager Lady Russell to Mr. Secretary [Cecil].
[1599/1600,] March 5. I thank you for your friendly letter, which I received here in the church when meaning to go to God's table, which made that I could not then stay your man for answer. I beseech you to see that my Lord Admiral desist indeed from Dunnington, or else to certify her Majesty thereof, for that all her tenants that have been under my government these 20 years are all come up with intent by supplication to sue to her Majesty that they may continue still her tenants under my government. All which swarm I have hitherto stayed, and therefore, tell my Lord Admiral merely though truly, that therein he is beholden to Elizabeth Russell the dowager, for acquittal of his favourite Elizabeth Russell her daughter. I find them led to this purpose for fear of Sir Thomas Parry and Thomas Fotzkew [Fortescue], which Fortzkew having bought already the priory land, no part of the manor, and Sir Thomas Parry, having purchased already three parsonages of her Majesty, wherein he hath gained two thousand pounds de claro without laying out any groat, would also buy this, to the hurt of the tenants if my Lord Admiral should have the fee simple of the whole manor, which certainly is above 100l. in her Majesty's books by 7l. de claro, besides the Castle and park. In that I am collector and sued so long to have the whole manor in lease, I know. Good Mr. Secretary, move her Majesty to grant my lease, promised to your father in his days, to me now for Bess Bussell's good. It cost me truly, twelve years since, a gown and petticoat of such tissue as should have been for the Queen of Scots' wedding garment; but I got them for my Queen, full dearly bought, I well wot. Beside, I gave her Majesty a canopy of tissue with curtains of crimson taffety, belited gold. I gave also two hats with two jewels, though I say it, fine hats; the one white beaver, the jewel of the one above a hundred pounds price, beside the pendent pearl, which cost me then 30l. more. And then it pleased her Majesty to acknowledge the jewel to be so fair as that she commanded it should be delivered to me again, but it was not; and after, by my Lady Cobham, your mother-in-law, when she presented my new year's gift of 30l. in fair gold, I received answer that her Majesty would grant my lease of Dunnington. Sir, I will be sworn that, in the space of 18 weeks, gifts to her Majesty cost me above 500l. in hope to have Dunnington lease; which if now you will get performed for Bess's almost six years' service, she, I am sure, will be most ready to acquit any service to yourself.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“1599, 5 March.” Two Seals. 1 p. (178. 132.)
Dennis Macharta to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 6. At my coming to Bristol with the rest of my fellows, in kindness drinking to your good health amongst all the rest, whereat some did so storm at me that I was in danger of my life, whereupon drawing my sword in defence, the party that drawed upon me was hurt, whose name was Owle, a man of small reputation, who caused me to be imprisoned in Newgate in Bristol the seventeenth of February, and there I still remain. He has entered an action of no less than 1,000l. against me in regard of some grudge towards your Honour of some of his consorts and my fellows, whom you shall understand when I have truly examined the cause. And besides, some speeches have been used to your disgrace by the common sort of soldier, as the writer hereof, Thomas Watkins, can certify, if he were not also in prison for taking her Majesty's part in some matters of weight, whose wife has been once at London against his adversary, and now she is come again to appeal to the Queen for justice. I would ask therefore for your warrant to the Mayor and sheriffs of Bristol commanding them and the said Owle to discharge me to go on my journey. Otherwise I shall lie here all my life, for Mr. Bices, my countryman, was before the justices showing how I was bound in the Queen's service and was under Sir George Carye, yet they would not release me.—Bristol, 6 March, 1599.
Endorsed :—“McCartey.” ½ p. (68. 72.)
Sir H. Wallop to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 6. I am so busy with the settling of my books and warrants in order, before I despatch my father's late ministers, now attending his account here, into Ireland, that I have not been able to attend upon you; and therefore hereby remind you of the letter of credit you promised me to Sir Geoffrey Fenton; and also that Sir Francis Stafford may be a commissioner with the auditors now sent hence. He is a very honest gentleman, and has Irish experience.—From my house at Clerkenwell, 6 March, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (68. 73.)
Fellows of Clare Hall, Cambridge, to Sir Robert Cecil.
[1599/1600,] March 6. Thanking him for his favour bestowed in the election to the Mastership.—Clare Hall, 6 March.
Signed. Gulielmus Boys, Edwardus Manistie, Richard Thomson, Johannes Allerton, Jehochanan Mawde, Georgius Ruggle.
Latin 1 p. (136. 72.)
Lord Buckhurst to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, March 7. I send you my letter to Mr. Mayor, open for you to read and then to seal and send away with all speed, to the end you may know what course I directed; and if you think good to alter it in any point, then knowing your opinion therein, I will reform it. The Lords' letter from Sir H. Dockray, I return to you, to be answered by the Lords by you. And I send you also the Mayor's letter to me for your information.—7 March, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (68. 74.)
Lord Willoughby to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 7. My deputy will be glad, as well as I, of the favourable construction you afford his endeavours. I had sent you the writings he mentions of the Scottish Association but that I thought you had it. I am always anxious to serve you, and thank you for “seasoning her Majesty with my desire to proffer her service.” I am not hasty of time and can attend any.—March 7.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“1599.” Seal. 1 p. (68. 75.)
The Vice-Chancellor and Others of the University of Cambridge to the Archbishop of Canterbury and Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 7. On the subject of the controversy about the election of the Master of Clare Hall, touching the capacity of Mr. Boys for that place, his supposed appeal to the University and all other controversies appertaining. Upon due consideration of the exhibit on both sides, herewith sent, together with the statutes of that House, we do find—first, that none but a proposed divine is capable of that Mastership, for the Statutes of that House being to be understood according to the grammatical and common sense, we take these words (Capite de Magistri electione et qualitate) in theologia doctus gradaatus et sacrarum literarum studio deditus to be express to that purpose. Besides, the intention of the Founder, declared in these Statutes, is only for divinity, except one lawyer and one physician. Secondly, that there lieth no appeal in this case, being now devolved by their Statute to the Chancellor of the University, to whom the right of conferring the Mastership (upon one being commorant in the University and according to the said Statutes qualified) by their Statute now belongeth. Lastly, we think the elections of Mr. Boys have not been made agreeably to Statute, not only in regard to his incapacity, but also for that he had not in any election the greater part of the suffrages of the Fellows, necessarily required by the Statutes of that House. Besides, his first election was made before the time limited by Statute; as for the third (whereon he most standeth), besides the defect of the greater part, it was not done in præsentia majoris partis sociorum sine qua ad electionem nullatenus procedatur as the Statute saith.—Cambridge, 7 March, 1599. Robert Some, Vice-Chancellor, Roger Goade, Edmund Barwell, James Mountagu, Ric. Clayton, Laur. Chaderton.
1 p. (136. 73.)
Documents connected with the controversy, referred to above, Viz. :—
I.—1. Copy of the Statute de lectione Statutorum in the Statutes of Clare Hall, providing for the half-yearly reading of the Statutes and the reference to the Chancellor or his deputy of any doubts and obscurity which the Masters and Fellows cannot solve, &c. Latin
2. Certificate that the copy of the Statute is a true copy, and that the doubts which are grown upon the late election of the Master there, because they cannot be decided in the College, are to be decided by the Vice-Chancellor and two doctors. Signed.—Umphry Tyndall, Jo. Duport, John Overall, John Jegon, Thomas Legg, John Cowell.
3. Opinion of Edmund Barwell and James Montagu to the like effect.
4. “We, the heads of Colleges, whose names are underwritten, being present March 3, with Mr. Vice-Chancellor, at the examination of William Boys' election to the Mastership of Clare Hall and of his appeal from Mr. Vice-Chancellor, are not of the same opinion with them that, touching the said points, set their hands unto a letter to the Archbishop of Canterbury and Sir Robert Cecil. Umphry Tyndall, Jno. Duport, John Cowell.”
5.—“We, the Fellows of Clare Hall, whose names are underwritten, do most humbly crave the benefit of the aforesaid Statute de lectione statutorum which are grown upon the late election of the Master.—William Boys, Richard Thomson, Johannes Allerton, 'Jehochanan' Mawde, George Ruggle, Edward Manistie.”
Endorsed by Cecil :—“From Clare Hall.”
2 pp. (136. 71.)
II.—1. Statute de electione Magistri requiring that the Master shall be in sacra theologiæ doctum graduation cultui divino virtuti ac sacrarum literarum studio deditum and that the statute shall be interpreted by its grammatical sense.
2. Opinion of Dr. Roger Goade that the statute requires a divine to be chosen Master.
3. The like of Edmund Barwell.
4. The Heads of Colleges above named, not having by custom or statute any right to interpret our statutes, at the request of William Boys, competitor for the Mastership of Clare Hall, gave their interpretation under their hands before the 31st of December last past, which we, whose names are underwritten, will justify upon our oaths. Signed.—Richard Thomson, Edward Manistie, George Buggle, John Allerton.
In various hands 1 p. (136. 77.)
III.—It is required by the statutes that if any of the Fellows be absent, the rest shall stay from the election of the Master for the space of ten days; either all or most part of the Fellows must concur in the election; no election is to proceed except in the presence of the greater part of the Fellows, personally or by proctors. The statutes are to be construed according to their grammatical meaning. The number of Fellows is thirteen. The Master should be in theologia doctus etc.
Which grounds considered, it seems none of the persons pretending themselves to be chosen hath been duly elected according to the form prescribed, and therefore, the placing of the Head is devolved for this time to the Chancellor, according to the statute. For the first pretended election of Mr. Boys is merely void, as being done in the absence of five of the Fellows, and that long before the 10 days expired, which the statute appoints for the expectation of them that were absent; and the second election, wherein Mr. Boys and Mr. Bing were chosen by several voices, is likewise void, as well for that it was done before the time prescribed, as for that also neither of them both at that time had for himself the greater part either of all the Fellows or of them that were then present, especially seeing Mr. Boys could take no benefit of his own voice compromitted to another, he himself being present.
And for the third and last pretended election of Mr. Boys, being done the 31st December, and at the last moment, as it is intended, from the notice given, it can be of no more validity than the rest, considering the Statute says that ad electionem Magistri mdlatenus procedatur nisi in ipsa præsens fuerit major pars sociorum. And it is agreed that at that election there were but six of the thirteen, though there were eleven at home.
And for the inferences of law which Mr. Boys and Mr. Bing pretend for their several rights, Mr. Boys alleging that the third election being done in ultimo momento the Fellows absent were to be esteemed by interpretation of law, contumaciter absentes and so totum jus eligendi rested in them that were present, and Mr. Bing inferring that by reason in their choice they did elect scienter indignum and so consequently his election was good, though done by the lesser part—neither of these inferences have sufficient grounds to make good their elections, for that they both lie upon the constructions of law, beyond the grammatical and common sense, whereas the Statute prescribes only a grammatical and common sense in its interpretation. Lastly, as touching the quality of the Master by Statute required in theologia doctus etc., it seems that no man is eligible but a professed divine and of some degree in divinity; and besides, this absurdity would otherwise follow, that a bachelor of music or arts were eligible to be Master of that house.
2 pp. (136. 80.)
The [Earl of Essex] to the Countess of Northumberland.
1599/1600, March 7. Dear Sister, It is my nature and shall ever be my course to deal truly and plainly with the world, and my love to you and care of your well-doing confirming me in this resolution, you must look for plainness at my hands. The draught of a letter to your husband which you sent me, enclosed, is too short by two of the three material points which I tendered to you; and too long by that uncertain charge in the end of the letter, which shows no ground and can have no end. I do, therefore, wish you should write to some likely effect, or else be silent till you can persuade yourself otherwise; and when you write, that you should give no occasion to new questions, or mention anything that may kindle new jealousies. And in the meantime I shall have my heart full of a double grief; one that you are fallen into this misfortune, another that you were the beginner and are the continuer of it yourself. You say in your letter to me he did you wrong, but his wrong should not make you take revenge upon yourself. No words he could use should make you come away in passion, till you had satisfied both your friends and the world that you were forced to leave his house, and could not by other means have had a quiet life. But I see it is in vain to dispute : I will pray to God that hath the guiding of all hearts, to direct you to like that which shall best please Him, and give you honour and true comfort. And till you have answered the reasons which I have seconded my counsel withal, I shall complain of the power and tyranny of passion which doth thus govern many times excellent hearts against their judgments, their friends' advice and their own good. And so I rest your faithful and most affectionate brother.
Endorsed :—“My Lord to my lady of Northumberland, 7 March, '99. Concerning her passionate departure from her husband.”
Draft ½ p. (178. 184.)
The Earl of Lincoln to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 8. I have sent to you before this time by Mr. Gorges in the matter whereof he had some speeches with you; but both I and he have been very sick ever since we were at Court; yet now I mean to go down (though I go in a litter) to dispatch some private business of my own and the safe sending up of your money. Yet, if you send Percival or some other that you trust to me before my going, I will make you an offer that shall deserve thanks, because you shall not be afraid of my death, nor my friends refuse to be my executors in respect of my debts. I have sent by this bearer to the Lords of the Council my answer, to Robert Rider's complaint, and should be glad to know your pleasure by this bearer before going into the country.—Channon Row, 8 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. ½ p. (68. 76.)
Sir Thomas Maria Wingfelde to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 8. I have found since my coming into England that her Majesty is displeased with my conduct. I had hoped to shew that with a dutiful care of the state of Ireland as it then stood, I did gather together a broken army, by making one stand with my own regiment at a ford going forward, for the coming up of two others commanded by Cume and Billinges, which else had been merely cut in pieces, as themselves will acknowledge, and by making one other stand in my retreat, I brought off 500 men, when Cosbie was taken, who had else been put to the sword. I brought them not running but marching in rank, and maintained skirmish to Armagh, and thence with discretion and soldierlike to Newry; 400 hurt men carried upon garrans, about 700 unarmed, and almost 1,300 armed, but so heartless, their general slain, many of them having lost their captains, colours, and officers, many untrained newly come out of England (whereof we had at our setting forth 1,800, and the whole army was not 3,500 foot) not fit to be adventured sixteen miles from a traitor, then in pride, in number rather above 8,000 than under. I saved Newry from burning without breach of my word, as I have been slandered, which Tyrone meant to do, as appears by his message to me on our march, that he meant me to go through the “Phwes” and not by the Newry, where at our parley there was no speech of the way; and this purpose of his was afterwards generally known. Thence, within four days, I brought them to Dundalk in despite of the enemy, who lay to fight me with 5,000 men; having sent me word that if I went by Newry, the pledges should be from thence exchanged (which was so performed), and he would fight me at the Moira. But I had so good espial in his camp that hearing he had sent most of his force after midnight to fetch victuals, I passed to Dundalk before their return, whence I sent them to their garrisons; whereby the subject was in some sort defended, the staggerer comforted, the traitor fronted, and the kingdom secured from the danger that had been if the whole army at the Blackwater had perished. For my conduct, I was thanked there, and thought not to be otherwise treated here, being not conscious of any dishonour or cowardice in me, from which imputations my 28 years' service might have freed me. But a mighty one at the first distasting that service, I have been long put out of the Queen's pay, and my reputation brought in question in every alehouse. I have been thought fit by my generals to carry good commands, which have driven me to expense, so that for want of pay due to me I have had to entreat my brothers to engage their estates for me, who, like myself, hoped that after all my service I should have received my pay. Yet now, by the miscensuring of my conduct, I am forced to apply to them once more; for of 1,200l. due to me, I can get but 66l. 19s. 2d., while, since my coming over, my brothers have entered into statute bonds for 140l. on my behalf, which should have been discharged before my return.—March 8, 1599.
Signed. Seal. 2 pp. (68. 77.)
Mons. Noel de Caron to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 8. Sends him the letter of Mons. Bruninck, chief councillor of Count Maurice, who knows all about their affairs, having also been for twenty years chief Secretary to the late Prince of Orange; by which he will see the disposition of affairs there, as also by Mons Barnevelt's letter, which he sends, although it is in Flemish, as Cecil has a servant who knows the language. As to what Barnevelt says of Van Eycken, it is because the latter had made curious enquiry after Caron, with whom he evidently wishes to speak, and he had wished to know how to behave to him. Is hastening towards Holland to-day; will be glad to hear anything from Cecil to-day or to-morrow, when he will have occasion to send to Cecil.—Clapham, 8 March, 1599.
Holograph. French. 1 p. (178. 136.)
Mary, Lady Denny to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 9. My late loss and my children's need enforce me to fall at her Majesty's feet, assured she cannot be void of compassion for the children of her dead servants, now ready to starve or be relieved by alms. To you also I must appeal, who commanded Mr. Denny to set out upon this unfortunate service, for which he sold his stock and mortgaged his house, which cost him, with the journey she sent him after Lord Thomas Howard, almost 1,400l., since which time, being nine years, she never gave him anything but Olneye Park, which he sold for 400l. Now in sickness, she promised him his office should be disposed to the payment of his debts, and for the relief of his children. He owes the Queen and others nearly 1,900l., the office being little more worth. Yet would Mr. Darcye have a share, who has little need to suck this small portion of her Majesty's favour from the hungry mouths of my children; having at least 1,800l. a year; who lately told the Queen that I had 700l. or 800l. a year, which untruth causes me to send you a view of my estate. My father spent, to furnish and maintain me in the Queen's service, at least 1,300l., and now I must seek relief from others, if after she has promised to relieve my children with this office, she give it to another to pay her own debts. Yet this I trust she will not do; for this office, Mr. Denny sold to Mr. Dobson upon the Queen's grant absolutely, whereby Mr. Dobson became so far engaged for Mr. Denny's debts, that without it he will be undone, and the world would think the Queen deals hardly with a servant who served 17 years in her chamber, spent all that he had, and ended his life by the sickness he took in her service. My mind being overcharged with grief, I must yet let your Honour know, except her Majesty bestow this office on us, Mr. Denny must go to his grave in so obscure manner as never any of his place did, being not able to buy myself a mourning gown.—London, 9 March.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (68. 78.)
The Enclosure :
A true note of my poor estate.
Pirton a manor now leased for 19 years at 30l., which will be worth when the lease expires 100l. more.
Starford parsonage now worth above the rent 90l a year the rent being 66l a year to Dr Duport the parson there.
Berchanger a college farm worth above the rent at most 90l a year is but a lease for 19 years and held for the payment of 900l. debts.
Starford manor leased for 21 years after which time it will be worth 190l. a year now yields nothing Mr Denny owes the Queen 1,100l., and to others 790l.
He spent in the journey to Ireland wherein he fell sick 700l.
In his sea-journey after Lord Thomas Howard he spent 660l.
And hath had no recompence but Olneye Park
1 p.
George Nicolson to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 9. I hear that a month ago two Englishmen (besides the gentleman that came to the West) came here dressed as Scotsmen, one of them a priest, and spoke with the King, and shewed him an answer to Doleman's book that is to be printed. I hear the priest was in your hands, either in examination, prison, or otherwise, but I cannot discover his name. The King is so wary that he will speak with none, unless he knows they come unknown; others he deals with by messengers.
The Kirk fear that liberty of conscience should be sought for at this convention. I see no cause to doubt it at this time, but it is meant to be done when it may be without danger; but the barons and boroughs will never suffer it; for some think that if the King should give liberty of conscience, it would win him the Papists of England, and 26 sometimes, I hear, thinks so.
The King is now dealing to have an army taken up and paid by the Earls, Lords, Barons, &c., and some of his counsel and captains are now set to this work; he hopes to get 15,000 men maintained at the country's charge, that is, on the voluntary charge of the ablest men in the land, without prejudice to his other rights to military service in time of war. [Margin : This matter is in plotting and to be concluded at the convention, one way or other, as also the captains here are advising what numbers and what suits of arms Burley should bring.] This army is meant, partly to subdue the isles, whither the King goes this summer, and to be in readiness against he have a do with England, which is hoped to be soon. But God, I hope, shall still preserve her Majesty and put them by their hopes. In any case our country could easily raise five times the number of troops to serve the Queen. There is great looking for Beltresse's coming, to hear what news he brings of the peace between us and Spain, which is still doubted to be done in the King's hurt, and also for other secrets he may bring. [Margin : Some say, as we get Spain, so will they Prance and the Low Countries to band with them.]
On the 1st hereof the King returned from the Friars' at Kelso, accompting when he came in sight of the town, “that he was come from heaven and going to hell,” so well had Sir Robert Kerr entertained him. It is thought to send Sir Robert Kerr into England, but this is secret and unlikely. Mr. Guevaro, my Lord Willoughby's deputy, attending on the Borders the time of the King's being there to see good rule kept and hinder the creeping in of practising creepers, was and is greatly grudged at here, not for any offence now made, but because having offended the King by taking away of Ashfield, he came in the King's sight with some of the garrison. [Margin : The King found no fault himself, but said, “Good reason! Why might he not be there?”] So well do they remember with displeasure all actors anent Ashfield.
As to the great matter at the Convention, where it was intended to help the King's estate by a tax on every ox, cow, sheep and horse, and on every boll of corn when and wherever they should be sold, some writings have come abroad that the same should be extended to all things, even to children when born; which the King is angry at, saying that it is done to make him odious to his subjects, charging the Lord of Brade, for that he had one of these writings, to give up an author, and so minds to return it to the discovery of the author. Sir George Hume and Sir Patrick Murray were sent to Huntley to advance this plot for the four-footed beasts and corn. But Huntley and Erroll say that they cannot move the barons thereunto, and will not vote to charge the country and their posterity with such a preparative. The King said he had done more for them and is not well pleased. The King directed my Lord Secretary to deal with Angus to stay him from the Convention, to avoid a quarrel between him and Huntley about precedency, Angus being minded to keep his place above Huntley as first Earl, notwithstanding Huntley's marquesship. Angus refused the Secretary, but has not been requested by the King to remain away. It is understood that there will be great opposition to this overture of the Comptroller's and the “Chamber,” yet they hope to effect their plot.
My Lord of Mar and some of the honestest counsellors have plotted a better way to help the King, and have told it to the King on his promise to keep it secret, and what it is I know not, neither can any man say what this Convention will produce. But if the Comptroller's course take effect, then the plot to draw the young prince out of Mar's hands under colour to bring him up with the King, is like to go forward. But if their plot will not serve the King, but my Lord of Mar's must and doth, some of the other party are in danger to be discounted.
On Monday the King, unless he stay for Beltres, goes to Linlithgow and so to Stirling and to the General Assembly at Montrose. Where if he cannot get the Lords to return the Bishops' livings, that he may make bishops as that will not be, he will have them to consent that the Kirk may have votes as of old they had in parliament, which well cannot be denied. For no minister will take the name of bishop to be scorned without living. Yet the King would gladly have that for uniformity's sake with us, and hath been long about it, yet I judge must get the Kirk to have votes without that name to help him against his nobility.
Of late, speeches have been that Bothwell was at Dieppe and to come hither.
On Tuesday last the Prior of Blantyre's suit against Cassells was lost in law, and the Earl absolved from the same. Some note the Stewarts have little favour now.
Some think Huntley will be in danger if he come to St. Johnston's as he will; but he and Erroll will be very strong there.
Johnston is quietly here, and “Harris” and Drumlanrig openly by the King's command, who has got them to subscribe submission for all matters, the King to be umpire, save the L. Maxwell's death; but as one agrees, another disagrees, for this week the master of Ogilvy and my Lord of Spinay met and fought, and are far entered into blood, two of a side being slain, the Lord of Spinay and the master of Ogilvy both hurt, and herewith the country of Angus disquieted. The King has sent his officer-at-arms to charge the parties to keep their own houses till he may take order in the matter; but it will not agree without more blood among them.
Since writing this I hear that Bothwell and George Seaton (young Perbrouthe) are come to this country about Fastcastle. It will breed troubles if it is so.
Beltres is come even very now and is with the king this afternoon at four hours.
The gentleman that came in at the West is Henry Lee. The King has had him warned that I have written to the Council of his being here, and that Mr. Daeres should tell me on him, and is angry at Mr. Daeres for the same as if he had told me. If Mr. Daeres could obtain any pension of the Queen, he plainly told me he would leave off depending on the King; and that he would write to his sister the Lady Montague to deal for him. He asked me to send these letters, which so far I have avoided. Yet I find that only very want makes him think on his and his son's matchings here, of which I see no great appearance. But they are wholly bent to seek your favour and the Queen's.—Edinburgh, 9 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. 3 pp. (68. 79, 2.)
Christopher Hoddbsdon and J. Wheler to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 9/19. There is one Hans Wowtenel, a stranger dwelling in Paul's Churchyard, who, we are informed, hath of late received a great number of Popish books printed at Antwerp in the year '99, under the title of The Primer or Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Latin and English. Within a day or two we purpose to send you one of the said books, for here are some store in town in a burgher's hands, which we mean to acquaint the Council of State withal here, and to procure them to be stayed. These, and the other sent into England, came hither by the way of Breda, and the provider and sender thereof we understand is presently in England. His name we will write when we know the same.—Middeburgh, the 19th of March, 1600.
Signed. by both. Endorsed :—“Hans Woltneel.” 1 p. (77. 67.)
Mons. Noel de Caron to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 9. In favour of the merchants interested in the ship Maria of Middelburgh.—Clapham, 9 March, 1599.
French Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (178. 135.)
The Mayor and Aldermen of Kingston-upon-Hull to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 10. With reference to the loss sustained by the merchants, owners and mariners of this town at the hands of the King of Denmark, we have been requested by them to write to you for your furtherance of their suit. They have authorised William Tailour and Thomas Hartcastle to act for all their body, and have sent with them certificates of their losses under the common seal of this town. For one ship not therein mentioned, the Charity William Tailour, master and part owner, will depose himself. And if it be thought fit that these two men go to Emden with the Queen' commissioners to meet the commissioners of the King of Denmark, they will be ready to go.—Kingston-upon-Hull, 10 March, 1599. Signed, Anthony Burnsell, Mayor. John Lyster, Luke Thurscros, William Richardson, John Chapman, Marmaduke Hadylfie, Edward Cook.
Seal. 1 p. (68. 80.)
Captain Edward Cecil to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 10. I find daily my obligation to increase towards your Honour, and especially among those that do honour and love you truly. But for those that are base, ignorant and wicked, it is as hard to follow you with any faithfulness as to alter their own nature; of which condition I have met with one (whose name is Mr. Gilpine) in my business about the company of Sir Nicholas Parker. I was never in friendship with him; but I have had good knowledge with his disposition to do for all those that have carried false hearts to your Honour. The which I myself am witness to; when our captains hence went into Ireland; and by the correspondence he holds with others in England. He brags much of his friends in Court, when he never names you. He is most covetous and minds bribes more than the Queen's service, which makes him to be so fearful to withstand anything that the States like not of. As for the injuries he hath done me, they are the greater that I never deserved ill at his hands (unless by denying him a bribe he begged of me). He has laboured to cross me and to do his best for the lieutenant of the company, who is known to be a coward and a traitor, who came to the company from the enemy, not from England. To hinder me the more, Mr. Gilpin has dealt with the Commissaries to take advantage of my officers in their musters, who have taken my clerk out of his bed and put him in prison; only to hinder me with the States from the company of horse. All which I tell your Honour, that you may favour me as shall seem good to you.—The Hague, 10 March, 1599.
Holograph. Addressed :—“To the Eight Honorable and my singular good uncle, Sir Robert Cecil &c.” Endorsed :—“Invective against Mr. Gilpin. Received at Richmond the 16th.”
2 pp. (68. 81.)
[William Bourchier,] Earl of Bath, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 10. Not long since the bearer hereof naming himself Richard Gifforde, sometime of Chichester in the county of Sussex, arrived at the port of Ilfarcombe in a certain French barque from St. Lucar in Spain, fraught with wines and bound for Bristol. I have examined him, according to their Lordships' instruction, concerning the restraint of passengers. He hath, for the better manifestation of his loyalty, taken the oath appertaining to the duty of a true subject, and therefore I have granted him my pass for his repair unto you, to whom he saith he will make further discourse of his captivity in Spain. This man is the first passenger I have dealt with since the receipt of their Lordships' letters.—From Towstock, the 10th March, 1599.
Signed. Endorsed :—“10 April, 1600.” 1 p. (78. 53.)
Henry, Lord Cobham to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 11. The friends of poor Thomas Jefferies desire a letter by your means from the Board to the Lord Mayor, that the collection made in the city before Easter for releasing captives taken by the Turks or Barbarians might be bestowed on him for his ransom. I know no other means for his relief. The Audiencier has been moved to be a mean for him and has promised what shall lie in his power.—From my house at Black-friars, 11 March, 1599.
Signed. 1 p. (68. 82.)
John Carey to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 11. Having the opportunity to address this letter from Mr. Nicholson out of Scotland, I will add that last Saturday, the 8th, there passed through this town Mr. Semple, the Lord of Beltreis, who delivered to me your letter of the 26th of February, permitting him to take into Scotland three ambling horses or geldings. All here is quiet. The King is gone to Montrose to the General Assembly, whence he means to return to St. Johnstones to a great Convention.—Berwick, 11 March, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (68. 83.)
Richard Lowther to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 11. After my Lord Warden's departure for Court, I came here, where I found the office left by him in good order, which so continueth. I sent a trusty man over into Scotland to offer to confer with Sir John Carmighell, warden opposite, when and where he might wish. But he was gone to Edinburgh upon the King's command, to attend the council, where the Lords Herries, Johnston, Drumlanrig and others will be to subscribe their submissions to stand to the judgement of four Lords, which the King desires in order to have a general pacification among his subjects. I fear the Warden's absence will give the insolent borderers of Scotland a chance to follow their accustomed use of riding and committing harm in England. But I shall endeavour to prevent them.—Carlisle, 11 March, 1599.
Signed. Seal. 1 p. (68. 84.)
Sir Edward Denny to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 12. Letter of introduction for a gentleman “who desires to be joined patentee with an uncle of his in an office, or to have the reversion of it, which office hath continued in their name six or seven score years.”—12 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. ½ p. (68. 85.)
Thomas, Lord Scrope to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 12. I am much bound to you for your labours in procuring my leave. I am now come so far on my way to London as York, having left Mr. Richard Lowther as my deputy, and the country as quiet as it was of a long time. I have much business in London, and as the time wherein the Queen allows my coming up is now within a few days, I pray you hasten it the rather. I shall come on slowly, or stay a while at Langer, till I hear you have leave for me; for I cannot return to Cumberland, my house being broken up.
As to Henry Leighe, before my leaving Carlisle, he gave out that he was going to Ireland, and was gone to London to get a suit of her Majesty. But I have written to Mr. Lowther to search out the said Leighe, and to send him up to you with two of my servants.—York, 12 March, '99.
Holograph. 1½ pp. (68. 86.)
Henry, Lord Cobham to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 12. I wrote to you the other day enclosing a letter from my lieutenant concerning two Irishmen stayed at Dover. I cannot answer him until I know whether they are to be discharged or brought up to you.—My house in Blackfriars, 12 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. ½ p. (68. 88.)
John Boldero to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 13. Laus Deo in London, 13 March, 1599.—Your father before he went to that bliss God hath appointed for His elect, did more good than I can write in relieving the wronged and oppressed. Presuming on your wisdom and imitation of him, I appeal to you. Being a merchant, and at Medleboro in Seeland, I left a bill for 280l. money of that country, for goods sold to Claus Clauson, a merchant of that country, with Percival Style, a merchant of London, who returns me neither bill nor money. Complaining in the Court of Requests before Master Doctor Cecer, I found no relief, and therefore come to you for help.
Holograph. 1 p. (68. 89.)
Antony Wingfield to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 13. A letter of compliment.—London, 13 March, 1599.
Latin Holograph. 2½ pp. (68. 90.)
— to Richard Louther.
[1599/1600, c March 13.] For news, ye shall wit his Majesty was in Edinburgh this last week upon Thursday the sixth of March, where the Lords Herries, Drumlanrig and Johnstone came in presence of his Majesty and Secret Council, and subscribed a submission amongst them, and so many Lords nominate for all debates, blood and quarrels among them, and his Majesty to [be] “vuerisman.” And the Lords and his Majesty to present the decree in these matters betwixt [now] and Whitsun next coming. The Warden of Scotland was present at the subscribing of this submission, and I think these matters will be at quietness.
His Majesty was to take journey this Thursday, the 13th of this instant, to ' Munttrosse,' to the Assembly of Ministers there.
The Lords Herries and Drumlanrig are both come home last Monday. I do not know if Johnstone has come home or not.
The Warden is to be in Lochmaben betwixt [now] and Sunday next, if he be not else come there. He has a Court appointed to be held there next Tuesday for redress of all complaints since the receipt of his office. And shortly I think the Warden will meet the Lord Deputy of England for taking order for Border affairs.
As to the bruit of the Lord Essex coming to Scotland, I can hear [no] certainty thereof [of] any creditable persons, but common bruits of the common people.
The Lords of Lochinvar, elder and younger, was charged to compeir afore the Council last week. The son, Sir Robert, was warded in the castle of Edinburgh, and the elder charged to remain in Edinburgh during the King's pleasure. The occasion was an Admiralty Court the son held in Tarrick before last Christmas, of which the Laird of Burganne (?) complained, alleging that the jurisdiction belonged to him.
Unsigned. 1 p. (68. 93.)
Richard Lowther to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 14. I received a letter from the Lord Warden directing me to send up Henry Leigh to the Court. It is so that Henry Leigh is altogether yet in Scotland, as I “writte” to Sir John Stanhope, and as you may see by this enclosure, sent to me out of Scotland to-day. I think he will not come in these parts; for he is so bound to that King that he will never be a good subject to the Queen. But if he do come in these parts, I will do my best to apprehend him.—Carlisle, 14 March, '99.
Signed. 1 p. (68. 95.)
The Enclosure :
[Leigh] to Richard Lowther
This to advertise you I spake with a man come out of Edinburgh yestreen He shows me that the Lords is all convenit before the King He will have them agreed before they sunder There is there Herries Drumlanrig and Johnstone The King has caused them subscribe a submission and will have them agreed before they come home The rest of the Maxwells that come not will be put to the Horn Harry Ley is there but keeps very quiet What is his business I cannot tell We look for our warden before Sunday Other news I hear none as yet From “ye waist quha.”
Scotch. ½ p. (68. 92.)
James Fitz Thomas, [Earl of Desmond,] to the King of Spain.
1599/1600, March 14. Your Majesty shall understand that the bearer hereof, Captain Andrew Boche, hath been always in the service of the Queen of England, and hath performed her manifold services at sea, whereby he had great preferment and credit, and being of late time conversant with Catholics and teachers of divine instructions, that were sorry for his lewd life, they made known to him the danger wherein his soul was, so that by their godly persuasions he was at that time reclaimed and converted to be a good Catholic and to spend the residue of his life in the defence and service of the Church.
Since which time of reconcilement, he was to repair to your Majesty with his ship and goods as is well known to your council, who “confixed” that ship to your use, himself being that time stricken with extreme sickness that he was not able to proceed in the voyage, and when his company returned to Ireland, they reported that the “Lantado” wished rather his person than the ship, which made him fearful ever since to repair thither, till he could deserve his freedom by some worthy service.
The heir apparent to the crown of England had been carried by him to your Highness but that he was bewrayed by some of his own men, whereby he was himself taken, and remained long in prison, till by the help of good friends he was conveyed into Ireland to me in a small boat. And having these occasions to your Majesty, I have committed this charge into his hands, the rather that 1 understand your Royal fleet is directed for England this year, to the end that he may be a conductor to them on the coast of England and Ireland, being a very expert navigator.—From my camp, 14 March, 1599.
Signed. “Ja. Desmond.” Addressed :—“To the most mighty Monarch of the World, the Great King of Spain.” Endorsed :—“From James Fitz Thomas to the King of Spain.”
Seal. 1 p. (68. 96.)
James FitzThomas, [Earl of Desmond,] to the King of Spain.
1599/1600, March 14. I humbly salute your Emperial Majesty, giving your Highness to understand of our great misery and violent order, wherewith we are of time oppressed by the English nation. Where government is such that Faro himself never used the like, for they content not themselves with all temporal superiority, but by all cruelty desires our blood and perpetual destruction, to blot out the whole remembrance of our posterity, as also our old Catholic religion, and to swear that the Queen of England is supreme of the Church.
I refer the consideration hereof to your Majesty's high judgement, the rather for that Nero in his time was far inferior to this Queen in cruelty. Wherefore, and for the respects thereof, right Mighty Potentate, myself with my followers and retainers, and being also thereunto requested by the bishops, prelates and religious men of my country, have drawn my sword and proclaimed wars against them, for the recovery, first, of Christ's Catholic religion and next, for the maintenance of my own right, which of long time has been wrongfully detained from me and my father, who by right succession was lawful heir of the earldom of Desmond; for he was eldest son to James my grandfather, also Earl of Desmond. And for that my uncle Garrod, being the younger brother, took part with the wicked proceeding of the Queen of England to favour her unlawful claim of supremacy, usurped to the name of Earl of Desmond in my father's true title, yet, notwithstanding he had not long enjoyed his name of Earl when the wicked English annoyed him and prosecuted wars that he, with the most part of those that held of his side, was slain and his country thereby planted with Englishmen; and now, by the just judgement and providence of God, I utterly “rutted” those malapert boughs out of the orchard of my country, and have profited so much in my proceedings, that my dastardly enemies dare not show their face in any part of my country, but have taken my towns and cities for their refuge and strength, where they remain (as it were prisoners) for want of means to assail them, as cannons and powder, which my country cannot yield. Having these wants, most noble Potentate, I have presumed with all humility to address these my letters to your High Majesty, craving the same of your gracious clemency and goodness to assist me in this goodly enterprise with some help of such necessaries for the wars as your Majesty shall think requisite. And after the quiet of my country, satisfaction shall truly be made for the same, and myself in person, with all my forces, shall be ready to serve your Highness in any country where you shall command me.
And if your Majesty will vouchsafe to send me a competent number of soldiers, I will place them in some of my towns and cities, to remain in your gracious disposition till such time as my ability shall make good what your Majesty shall lend me in money and munition; and also your Majesty's commission under the broad seal for leading and conducting of these soldiers, according to the prescript order and articles of martial discipline, as your Majesty shall appoint me, or as the service of this realm shall require. I praise the Almighty God I have done by His goodness more than all the rest of my predecessors. For I reclaimed all the nobility of this part of Ireland under the dutiful obedience of Christ's Church and my own authority, and accordingly have taken pledged and corporate oaths never to swerve from the same, and would have sent them to your Majesty by the bearer but that the ship was not of sufficiency to carry such noble personages. So there rests nothing to quiet this part of the world but your Majesty's assistance, which I daily expect.—From my camp, 14 March, 1599.
Signed. Endorsed :—“James Fitz Thomas to the King of Spain.” 1 p. (68. 98.)
Archibald Douglas to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 14. James Beton, laird of Westhaugh, James Hamilton, gentleman, now returned from France with George Heriot, goldsmith, that hath remained some short space in this city, are now all of mind to return to Scotland. The said James Beton hath brought with him from France a grey stoned horse to be transported to Scotland, for the doing whereof he prayed your passport. So far as I can learn, they are honest men and no dealers in matters of state, and therefore the more bold I am to request unto them your accustomed favour heretofore extended to all that country men.—This 14 of March.
Holograph. Endorsed :—March, '99. 1 p. (178. 138.)
[Henry Leigh] to Richard Lowther.
[1599/1600,] March 14. Ye shall ken I spake with a man that come new of Edinburgh. For news, he had not many, but these was they that I gat. The King's M. rade of Edinburgh on Monday to St. Johnston, to a convention that holds there. He will have all the Lords before him there and agree them for all feuds, and all the rest of the nobility of Scotland he thinks to have them agreed, or else they shall leave Scotland that refuses to do it. My Lord Hemes, Drumlangreg and Johnstone are all come home, and has referred all their matters in the King's hands and four Lords with him. We look for our Warden or Sunday. Our ministers likes not of this doing that the King is in hand with beyond Forth. There was eleven score of them assembled in Glasgow on Friday that last was, and thinks a part of them to be at St. Johnston at their convention. Other news I hear not at this time : “fre I heir any uther ye sal be fersein.” I will desire you to make my servant Hunter sure to come to Carlisle with a nag and his “lede,” for he is “weill kennit” in Carlisle. If I get any news he shall come with them to you, and if any man troubles him, I will send him to you, and use him as ye please.—From the Benesham, this xiiii of March. Yours when ye shall charge me, “ye vait quha.”
¾ p.
The Earl of Lincoln to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 14. Some neighbours of mine, of the town of Methryngham, obtained letters patent for a general collection for the repair of that town and church, which was lately burnt down. Being all tenants to one Enderby and his brother-in-law, simple poor men, they are drawn by this Enderby, a crafty attorney much in debt, to pass a deputation of this business to him without proper security. He offers already to sell a few “shyres” to others for 400l. and so rateably will make a great profit to himself of the money collected, and will cheat the town. This is brought to pass by Sir Edward Dymoke, who by colour of being one of the commissioners for musters, and matcht with gentlemen of quieter spirit, deals so that there is no levy for money or soldiers or aught else but that the country is taxed too high, which over-plus by means is drawn to his hands and never answered; the armour which is sent back slenderly restored for the most part. Soldiers never set forth without dismissing many of the fittest men for bribes given to his men; wherein he useth ordinarily one Bawtery and Reade, two needy justices he hath gotten in commission, who are ready, at a token from Sir Edward Dymoke, to discharge any man and put some poor man that cannot pay in their place. These things have been endured too long. And I therefore lay the matter before you, asking to let me hear your opinion by the bearer John Beresford, who will attend you and give sufficient security to account for the money collected, at a far lower rate that is demanded by the shifty attorney called Enderby.—14 March, 1599.
Signed. 1 p. (68. 99.)
William Stallenge to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 14. I enclose a letter received by me this morning. Divers ships have arrived here of late, and from those from Spain, I hear that the general speech there is of peace.—Plymouth, 14 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. ½ p. (68. 100.)
Sir Thomas Egerton, Lord Keeper, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 14. Sir, the house is avoided and cleansed, and I have written somewhat familiarly to Mr. M. Stanhope. I find some indisposition in myself, and fear to fall into the physician's hands, which I account as a curse. Yet I mean, if I be able, to be at the Court to-morrow.—14 March, '99.
Holograph. Seal. ½ p. (68. 104.)
Mark Over to the Privy Council.
1599/1600, March 15. It pleased you to cause me clapped up close prisoner in the Fleet on the 5th of March, for endeavouring to have a letter conveyed to my master Sir Walter [Leveson], and have ever sithence so remained, not able to provide myself of fire, candles, or other necessaries, owing to my poverty and Sir Walter's present wants. I would ask therefore that the intent of my letter be considered, which was to prevent Sir Walter's injuring your Honours or discrediting himself by averring a falsehood. I pray that my simple good meaning may mitigate part of the amisse, and that I may have liberty of the house till it be further determined. And whilst I live this shall be a caveat to me.—The Fleet, 15 March, 1599.
Signed. Endorsed :—“Mark Over, servant to Sir Walter Leveson.” ½ p. (68. 101.)
Sir Thomas Maria Wingfelde to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 15. Being disappointed of my hope, and my brother's credit being stretched to the uttermost, I have now to crave that, as there is now a proportion of treasure going to Ireland, you will write to Mr. Watson, who is in charge, to give me forty or fifty pounds imprest, to be repaid out of the first entertainment as signed me; and with this I will make shift to go to Ireland.—15 March, 1599.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (68. 102.)
Sir Walter Ralegh to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 15. I have perused this translated story of the conquest of Portugal and the wars of Africa, and have corrected some things therein. For the rest, I see nothing in the book but what may well pass, if your Honour should please to give allowance thereof, which I humbly desire in favour of the translator.—Dirrham House, 15 March, 1599.
Signed. Seal ½ p. (68. 103.)
Francis Dacre to his sister, the Viscountess Montagu, at Saint Mary Overy.
1599/1600, March 15. I am informed that notwithstanding my suit to be admitted to her Majesty's favour, with a competent pension for me and my son, which hitherto hath been frustrate, I am yet withal condemned of my honourable friends and yourself, most of all in many matters seeming great, but especially in five points :—(1) My refusal of the pension offered me in France; (2) my coming into Scotland; (3) my not seeking to Sir Robert Cecil to crave his favour in renewing my suit; (4) my going about to match myself and my son here in Scotland; (5) my seeking to get my daughter Bess from you to match her here. O sister, it is easy to find a staff to beat a dog; but I say, (1) I knew neither what to receive nor whether any certainty was of it until I came thence, and being here, I never refused the pension offered me, as by my letters to the Earl of Essex may appear, but only craved her Majesty's favour to receive it in Scotland rather than elsewhere. And withal, I was not only put to such extreme misery by long lingering delays, as if I had 1,000 lives I will spend them ere I suffer the like, but besides had special warning given me that no good was meant unto me at Sir Robert Cecil's coming thither. (2) I made choice of Scotland, partly as nearer to my prince and country than any other land, partly for the amity and friendship I knew was betwixt her Majesty and the Scots' king, partly also for my comfort in that, wanting language and few of my countrymen being in France, I should there have led but a wearisome life. But most especially for that, things being here better cheap than beyond the seas, no place so meet for me to live in, the small pension I ever yet could hear of well considered. (3) I am most willing to write to Sir Robert Cecil if I knew it could be accepted of. (4) It is only want that hath made me to listen to offers made for marriages to me and my son. (5) It is but a jest cast out in merriment, for I never had any meaning to bestow any of my daughters here.—Edinburgh, this xv. of March, 1599.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“10 Mar., 1600. Dacres.” 2 pp. (77. 49.)
Mons. Noel de Caron to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599/1600, March 15. Asking for an audience from the Queen to lay before her certain communications he has received from the States General, which they wish him to present to her.—“Clappam, Sepmedi, 15 Mars. 1599.”
Holograph. French. 1 p. (175. 5.)


  • . Intoxicated—Halliwell.