Cecil Papers: August 1601, 11-20

Pages 332-352

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 11, 1601. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1906.

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August 1601, 11–20

Sir Thomas Egerton to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 11. Now you have delivered me from D. Cæsar's bonds, I have sealed and delivered Mr. Vyvyan's patent, and wish him good speed.
Sir Edward Beynham's pardon was sealed yesterday. Sir W. Ralegh's book is ready, but I will stay it, as you direct.
I thank you for your advertisement touching the Spaniards. I have observed your conjectures, and have found them true judgments, and for such I esteem them, and wish they may longest continue, to your great honour.—York House, 11 August 1601.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Lord Keeper.” 1 p. (87. 87.)
Sir Thomas Fane to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 11. Whereas I received your letters by post the 8 of this instant, of effect that Sir Richard Leveson should procure the Admiral of the Hollanders to send over some of his men of war to conduct the 300 soldiers from Sandwich to Ostend, bending myself to send your letters directed to Sir Francis Vere, and also to Sir Richard Leveson, I could not compass either of them until yesternight, when I delivered the letters directed to Sir Francis Vere unto Mr. Ashborneham who then embarked for Ostend. The other letters to Sir Richard Leveson, I delivered aboard her Majesty's good ship the Drednought.
Concerning the materials for fireworks, I have and will take the best order I may to have them ready in every port town. And forasmuch as I have ever used to advertise my Lord Cobham of the occurrences of this place, I have held it not undutiful in me to certify in semblable manner to you in his absence, viz., that it is certainly advertised me by some passengers that lately came from Spain that the chief of the forces prepared for that navy is appointed for Ireland : where it is further affirmed unto me that some of them be already landed : and for such part of the Spanish forces as is purposed for the Archduke's aid, the same fleet should pass by the North of England as in the year '88 the Spanish fleet returned; wherein as I dare affirm nothing for certainty, so I crave pardon for troubling you with these uncertain intelligences.—Dover Castle, 11 August 1601.
Signed. On the back :—“Dover the 11 of August at 10 in the forenoon. Hast hast post hast hast with dillegence. At Canterbury past 1 of the clock in the after non. Sittingborn the 11 day past 7 at night. Darford at 8 in the morninge. Rd. at London at past 12 at noone 12 of August.” 1 p. (87. 88.)
Jo. Budden to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 11. Details various proceedings as to the wardship of Richard Bingham, and asks Cecil's decision in the matter. Sir Raffe Horsey and Mr. Strod, father-in-law of the ward, concerned. Reports upon various matters connected with Cecil's properties in Cranborne, Dorset, St. Michael's Mount, Cornwall, and Martock, Somerset. As to the incumbency of the rectory prebendal of the parish church of Fountmell, Dorset, and the incumbent, William Jesopp.—Shaftesbury, 11 August 1601.
Holograph.pp. (87. 89.)
Captain R. Wigmore to [Sir Robert Cecil.]
1601 Aug. 11. If you knew how strangely I have been detained in the Road before Ostend you would pardon my not writing before. On Sunday the 26 of July, I came to Margate, and on Tuesday night following, I landed all the eight hundred soldiers committed to my charge. But there was not then time to land the arms, being packed in chests and dry-vats. The next day I purposed to have landed the arms, but to this hour I have been so swaddled with storms or extreme foul weather, as these sufferings have in a manner cancelled the memory of whatsoever else I have endured in the whole course of my life. All which with a far more equal mind I should have tolerated if I had been discharged of these arms. The perverse dealing of this proud insolent colt of an Admiral hath added no small weight to the burden of my afflictions, from whom I could draw no assistance for the landing of those arms but such as was extorted as if I had suited a matter of extraordinary benefit : besides his unrespective speeches and regard of her Majesty's proceedings in these affairs, which do so much import them. Justinus Nassawe, having quitted the Admiralty of Zealand, this youth, called Myne Here van Obdam, is by the Admiral of Holland thrust into a managing of these affairs, during the time of his own employment in the narrow seas and elsewhere, in hope to draw the succession of that place upon this stripling, who is his nephew. But the Committees for the States General resident here in Flushing have within these four days sent and set over him a coadjutor, one very sufficiently reputed for that place.
Upon Sunday the 2nd of August, I had obtained that the Admiral would appoint me an empty hoy which should that night carry my arms into Ostend; whereinto when I came to put the same, I found an old rotten vessel half full of hurdles and half full of water, not able to receive more than two hundred and fifty arms. By chance there did anchor hard by a hoy laden with Sir Horatio Vere his provision, into the which, by favour of the shipper, I did put hundred and fifty arms more. These arms came safely that night into Ostend, albeit that the mariners were strangely toiled to keep the same hoy from sinking even in that short passage.
Upon Wednesday following, certain hoys being to be sent into Ostend with powder and provision of boards, I put the remainder of my arms into two of them; but when the hoys should enter into the town, a storm riseth up at the South, and that with such a fury that the poor boats were put from their anchors and forced to seek their safety in the sea. I being in a good man o' war did ride it out, the storm continuing from Thursday morning till Friday at night; at which time, the weather being somewhat calmed, I sent to desire the Admiral to send me in one of his men of war into Flushing, in which place I was persuaded that the hoys had found their safety; whereunto he courteously answered that he could not spare me any, although he had eight in his company. Thus left to myself, I resolved to undergo this foolish, though necessary, hazard—which was to cast myself into the first boat which might afford my passage into Flushing, for in the Road nothing was left but men o' war. The next morning an empty hoy cometh out of Ostend, being bound for Flushing, into the which I did put myself without any convoy, and for my labour had questionless been taken by two sloops of Blakenboroughe, if the wind, which for two days before incessantly tormented me, had not then provided for my safety. In Flushing, I found my lost sheep, the which, by the favour and ready furtherance of the Committees, I presently transported into a man o' war, who was commanded to return the arms unto the place from whence they came, with a further direction for the sending of the same into Ostend.
The oversight of this last business I was enforced to commit unto the Sergeant and a corporal of my company here : my own body being so worn with these recent miseries, that I am enforced to yield under the burden thereof. In truth I cannot but complain of my hard fortune to have been consorted with such assistants as fell to my share in this service : who if they had not lost time in swaggering at Gravesend, while I was at Margate, all this business had fourteen days since been happily concluded. Not any one of them have yielded me their least assistance in looking to the ships wherein the arms were, for the guard whereof I have been enforced, at my great charges, to place in every ship, both English and Dutch, men which for my money I hired from some Zealand captains of my acquaintance; without the which those ships would undoubtedly have carried away the arms God knoweth whither. And, when for the defraying of this charge, I had sent some victuals remaining of the soldiers' provision into Ostend to be sold, Ryder and Maye roundly seized the same, made money thereof, which they did put into their purses, and so returned into England sans dire adieu. What they made thereof I know not, but there fell into their hands a remainder of six days' victuals for two hundred men, which cost her Majesty thirty pounds at the least, and would have yielded much more there if the same had been well used. That same Ryder, by reason his uncle is Mayor of London, hath been an ordinary conductor this year, and, as I hear, was clapt by the heels at Chester for chopping and changing of those men which were committed to his charge.
As regards the present state of Ostend, the town as at the first is invested, both on the East and on the West side thereof. The approaches which are only on the West, are carried three divers ways; from the South to the new works in and on the side of the Pouldern, by Don Augustin; from the South-West towards the ravelin called the Porckepy, by Don Frederick; and from the West to the haven by Catryce. These three do work al envie; and Catryce is advanced even to the very piles of the haven. The rest are nothing so near, although within half musket shot. But Catryce his approach, which only carryeth greatest appearance of danger to the town, hath hitherto brought small comfort to the enemy, for upon Friday last, being the 7 of this month, the sea storming as it did at the North-West, his Spaniards and Walloons were forced to swim out of their trenches, and the most part of his gabions, which are the strength thereof, were brought into the town. Hereof in part myself was a beholder, and to that hazard is this approach subjected, as also unto every spring tide, if the wind bloweth but a little. The enemy's artillery and muskets from the East and West both by day and night do pour continual storms into the town, and this their artillery they have placed with that advantage that there is not any one part of the town which is free from the fury thereof, for the soldiers which are lodged half under the ground and under cover of the rampiers are killed in their cabins sometimes two and three at a shot. But Ostend will never be so taken, for when the Cardinal hath spent at the least thirty six thousand cannon shot, as he hath done, and that with the same some seven or eight hundred are slain, more men are, and daily will be, put into the town by that entrance which, in my opinion, the enemy will never be able to take from them. As for the bulwarks, they stand firmly still, though branded with innumerable marks of the Cardinal's displeasure, and do ordinarily return unto him three and four hundred cannon shot within the compass of twenty-four hours. For the night serveth their turn as well as the day, which is done by the advantage of a “mortesse” piece, that sendeth forth a bullet as great as a reasonable man is in the waist. This bullet, which will not miss to fall in the enemy's trenches, will there burn, sending forth infinite small shot with continual flames the whole space of half an hour, by the light whereof the cannoneers within the town do level their pieces at those troops of the enemy whom they have seen, and do make a wonderful butchery of them.
Within the town Sir Francis Vere is not failing unto any duty, unless it be in regard of his own person. For upon Tuesday the 4 of this month, being upon the Sandhill bulwark, he caught a knock in the head with a shiver of a cannon there broken by a shot from the enemy. Albeit he fell to the ground in a short swoon, yet was the wound found to be nothing dangerous, for the skull was no whit perished, although the harm lighted in the hinder part of the head, which is held to be the weakest. He is very shortly like to be well again.
The works without the town are to this day bravely defended. Within the town new devices are daily put in execution, as the making of casemates, secret sallies, covert mines, planting of cal-throps and such like. Sir Francis Vere hath caused a reasonable part of the counterscarp towards the South East to be cut, whereby he will be able to receive into the town ditch at every high water hoys laden with men or provision, and there safely to lodge at one time a hundred of them at the least. He hath likewise placed four cannons in the counterscarp under Hill Mount, with which he doth annoy the enemy extremely. The cost of defending the town hath already been very great, but certain principal men in this place have been deputed by the General States with ample authority for the continual supply of all that Sir Francis Vere shall demand. They will engage themselves far beyond ordinary rather than yield to the loss of Ostend. It undoubtedly carryeth with it matter of greater consequence than any other that hath fallen out for a long time in these parts, for if the Archduke faileth in this project, he must, in all likelihood, seek himself elsewhere than in Flanders; but if Ostend be lost, it is more clear than the sun that all the towns in Zealand will be transformed into villages, if they be not utterly abandoned.
Here are at this instant two thousand of the choicest men that were in the Count Maurice his army, already embarked, and shall to-morrow go from hence unto Ostend. Their division is thus—out of the French regiment have been taken six companies; from the Scotch regiment four companies; from the new Guises four companies, and the rest from the Hollands regiments. All these are under the command of young Chattillion until they come to Sir Francis Vere. And the rest of those two thousand men lately levied in England are, as I certainly hear, this night to be put into Ostend. So that the Cardinal will soon have to expect more from this place than a simple defence : whereof in my conscience he hath dreamed before this time, for his trenches are now that extraordinary and unusual strength as if from the beginning he had feared to have been pulled out of them.—Flushing, this 11th of August.
Holograph. Endorsed :—1601. 4 pp. (182. 147.)
Captain Ridgewaye to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 11. You will have heard the news here from Sir Robert Drury and Captain 'Holcroft. I am still awaiting my promised company. Since my coming, there hath been sent out of England three thousand men : out of which Captain Wigmore, Sir Edward Reade, and Captain Crofts have companies of two hundred : but I only myself and a few that live here on my charge. I'll stay a little longer in suspense and see this town half drowned by ourselves, and then I am purposed to go into Zealand to Captain Cecil. Sir Francis Vere goes this night for Middleburgh, and that breeds discontentment here.—From Ostend, this 11th of August 1601.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (182. 148.)
The Earl of Northumberland to Sir Robert Cecil.
[1601], Aug. 11. I have adventured till my return to give you the custody of my notebook of our proceedings before Berke, daily collected as the works did advance, and drawn by a servant of mine own. The approaches fell out to be so little in this general draft, that I have caused them to be drawn apart. I have been bold to send her Majesty one drawn a little more curious for the painting, which, I beseech you, do me the favour to present from me, as also a letter of our proceedings.
For the state of our affairs here, since the taking in of the town we think of the fortifying it. We have been before Moeurs with the greatest part of the army and twelve cannon. The Duke of Cleve held the town from his Excellency as pretending the right. His Excellency claimed it by the gift of the late Countess of Moeurs, and therefore sent the day before to summon it with eight hundred horse; the burghers denied him the possession; his Excellency marched to it the next day, and when he had embattled his army, appointed out the quarters for to lodge about the town and brought the cannon before it, they yielded him the keys. Once before he had taken it and it cost him eight days ere he could carry it then, the enemy being in possession of it. It is worth 3,000l. yearly. He hath left three cannon in it, three companies of foot and one of horse : given order for the mending of the fortifications, which will be strong when they are done. After this, his Excellency marched another time with thirty-three companies of horse through the enemy's country to Wachtendonke, to view the state of the town, to leave four cannon in it, which he carried thither, to give order for the repairs and mending of the fortifications, to conduct four companies of foot to leave in it, and, besides, led along with him two hundred wagons laden with powder, bullet, match and such like munitions. At his return we made another journey to Crackoe with the three thousand horse much of the same nature as the other was. None of the enemy did attempt anything upon us in any of these passages, except some small parties which lay in woods, that took up stragglers. The enemy had gathered an army of ten thousand foot and two thousand horse, to have relieved Berke, if the Governor had held out four days longer. All the Italians which came out of Savoy, together with the mutineers of Weerd, which Count Herman and the Count of Buckois had persuaded, made up the former number. Now they are all dissolved again, the most part gone before Ostend, the mutineers returned to their garrisons. Now we are throwing down all our works raised against this town, and, as I take it, shall rise very shortly to cast ourselves upon some other place. His Excellency stayeth but the States' resolution, which yet they have not concluded. If it be to go before any town in these parts, Gueldres is the likeliest; if we sink down the river and do anything to divert the enemy from before Ostend, Hulst will be the mark we shall shoot at. This is the third letter I have written since my coming to the camp. I shall be glad you have received them all.—From the Camp before Berke, this 11 August.
Holograph. Endorsed : “1601.” 2 pp. (183. 1.)
The plan of the approaches before Berke, “drawn a little more curious for the painting,” referred to in the previous letter. (Maps I. 52.)
Peter Van Loor to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601 Aug. 11. By the bearer of this I send the jewel which I would not sell for less than four hundred lire. The three pearls are worth 150, and the other stones are all fine and from the East. But I leave the price to you, and will be content with what your Honour shall order me to receive.—London, 11 August 1601.
Italian. Signed. ½ p. (183. 2.)
Captain Holcroft to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 11. This night we see that the enemy is come the halfway upon the low ground which is between the sandhills and our half moon, and we find it avail little whatsoever we can do to hinder his working, for, by the nature of the ground and his exceeding strong working of his trenches with bavins and faggots, it is very hard for us to sally with any great troop, whereby to put in venture the beating of his main guards, and, with a few men, we can only scare away his workmen for a time, which we daily do though it give him little hindrance. Yesterday night we fell out thrice, and this day at noon once, with a few together, wherewith they were beaten out of their foremost loose trenches and some few were killed on their part. We lost only one, which was this day, and with that little sally, being but of fifteen men, their whole army seemed to draw into arms. This night our General determined to go towards Zealand, being very ill of his hurt, and not likely to recover if he stay here, because of the little rest our continual shooting will give him. For the defence of the town, it is thus resolved : that a bank which runs between our half-moon and our “porkupie” shall be cut in sunder, so that the sea may be let into our counterscarp ditch, which we say will in time make another gully (“gule”) on that side of the town, or else take away our counterscarp and endanger the town's drowning. But this it is thought will give him most hindrance and the States most respite to provide for our succours, which we do not conceive can be by any other means than by putting such an army into some parts as may withdraw the enemy : for, if he lie here long, the sea will prevail against us. The States have not been altogether so careful for us as our case requires, for munitions are sent us with such a niggard hand that we may by foul weather be very much distressed, and, at this instant, the town is ill furnished with powder and shot for our cannon, not having enough for two days.—Ostend, this Tuesday, 11 of August 1601. Sti : antiquo.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Received 16 Aug.” Seal. 1 p. (183. 3.)
H. Maynard to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 12. With a present of apricots.—Eston Lodge, 12 August 1601.
Holograph. ¼ p. (87. 91.)
Patrick Arthure to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 12. The 8th of this month, the captains and myself received the companies given us in charge, and according to our instructions have ended all matters here fit to be done, so as when it please God to send us a merry wind, we are ready to take the benefit of it. Captain Yorcke has his company full. Captain North wants of his 8 or 9: and of my 75 I want 6, who upon their first view were found insufficient and sent back, and a letter written for supply in their places. The rest of mine, together with the captains' companies, are very proper men, yet half a score of my company were brought out of gaol, and so sent hither, which the commissioners and others here do wonder at. I hope in God we shall have a quick passage.—Barnstaple, 12 August 1601.
Holograph. 1 p. (87. 92.)
Robert Soame to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 12. Cecil commended to them Mr. Trym for the proctorship. He and the seniors are very willing to prefer Trym, but the junior fellows are sharp set for another. Of the respective merits of the two. The only way to compass the office for Trym, is either by a peremptory command from Cecil in her Majesty's name, or a reference of the choice to himself and the seniors. Encloses extract of the University statute, which specially favours Trym.—Cambridge, 12 August 1601.
Signed. Endorsed :—“Dr. Some.” 1 p. (87. 94.)
The Enclosure :
A branch of the University Statute concerning the choice of Proctors and Taxors.
¼ p. (87. 93.)
Fellows of Peterhouse, Cambridge, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 12. It pleased him to write unto their Society in the behalf of Richard Trym, Fellow of the College, for favour at the election of the Proctorship. The greatest part had promised their voices, before the receipt of his letters, to Leonard Mawe, Master of Arts of seven years' standing, one of the senior Fellows, a man every way fit and sufficient to discharge the place, and against whom no exception is taken for life or learning, but only juniority, a thing which cannot be avoided when two stand for the same office. Their request therefore is that he would so far tender the keeping of their promises made to their friend, as to grant the liberty of their voices that they may use that order of election as by the Statute is appointed.—Peterhouse, Cambridge, Aug. 12 1601. Signed :—John Blithe, Roger Derhame, Walter Curll, Andrew Perne, Timothy Revett, Hughe Poole, Thomas Turner.
Seal. 1 p. (136. 91.)
Charles, Lord Willoughby of Parham to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 12. I send a nag which I think will like you well to carry you in the streets.—From Tupholme, the 12th of August 1601.
Holograph. Seal. ½ p. (183. 4.)
The Earl of Pembroke to Sir Robert Cecil.
[1601, August 13.] I have not yet been a day in the country, and I am as weary of it as if I had been prisoner there seven year. I see I shall never turn good justice of peace. Therefore I pray, if the Queen determine to continue my banishment, and prefer sweet Sir Edward [Fitton] before me, that you will assist me with your best means to get leave to go into some other land, that the change of the climate may purge me of melancholy : for else I shall never be fit for any civil society. I have written, sorrowfully complaining, to my Lord Admiral that he will be pleased to move my suit again, since there is no appearance of grace. The patent of the forest of Dean could not so speedily be gotten before my going out of town, but very shortly Arthur Massinger shall attend you with it, though there be so much past under general terms that I fear me it will seem somewhat slight. Let me still have the happiness to be beloved by you.
Holograph. Undated. Endorsed :—“13 August 1601.” 1 p. (87. 95.)
Fra. Neale to [Thomas Bellot].
[1601, Aug. 13.] As to a sale of certain of the Queen's lands. The Lord Treasurer requires the purchasers to make up their books of purchase, and pay the balance of money due : otherwise her Majesty is resolved to make leases in reversion of the lands, whereby to make present money thereof.—13 August 1601.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Mr. Auditor Neale to Mr. Bellot.” ½ p. (87. 96.)
Tho. Wattson to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 13. Herenclosed I send you a letter from Anthonie Reynaldes, from Loughfoile, who succeeded Captain Covert as Controller of the Musters there, as to the estate of her Majesty's forces there. If you please to afford him your countenance, you will find him of sufficiency and honesty to do her Majesty good service.
I am making up a true certificate of the estate of the exchanges with Mr. Lake, and will present it you at your next coming hither, or sooner if you appoint.—Mugwell St., 13 August 1601.
Holograph. ½ p. (87. 97.)
Sir Edward Coke to Sir Robert Cecil.
[1601, Aug. 13.] In the presence of this bearer, Sir Walter Rawlie's councillor and I agreed upon a course which may be despatched within two hours. I expected that should be performed which if Mr. Doderighe will draw, I will perfect in one hour. Your Honour knows how I did my best endeavour to the passing of this book, and I have Sir Walter's honourable promise that what his councillor yielded to, shall be performed. The performance whereof I only desire, and till that be done, my trust is your Honour will stay all further proceedings. Also, there must be a bond entered into for the answering of the value of the goods and leases if they shall, upon proof, fall out to be her Majesty's.
Holograph. Undated. Endorsed :—“13 August 1601.” Seal. 1 p. (183. 5.)
Richard Percival to Sir Robert Cecil.
[1601, Aug. 14.] Acknowledges Cecil's letter by Francis Neale. Details the proceedings he has taken as to a certain manor assigned from old Mr. William Neale, and describes the defects of title. He sends certain points under the hand of Mr. Gascoigne, whom he has consulted, and recommends that the matter be deferred till Michaelmas term, that the doubts may be cleared : or else Cecil to give direction what he will have done, and order for money, if he adventures to proceed. Mr. Auditor of the Rates wrote the enclosed to Mr. Bellot, and he has advised the latter to answer that he proceeds with all expedition.
Holograph. Undated. Endorsed :—“August 14 1601.” 1 p. (87. 99.)
Richard Percival to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 14. The enclosed was left out of his letter sent this morning by Puttrel : but he wrote Cecil the effect, and if Cecil sends answer accordingly, it will be sufficient.—The Savoy, 14 August 1601.
Holograph. ½ p. (87. 98.)
Jno. Hopkenes, Mayor, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 14. Acknowledges Cecil's letters for the President of Munster, which shall be sent as soon as wind will permit. Touching the soldiers to be transported from hence, there yet want of them 25 men which should come from Cardiganshire, and 40 from Pembrokeshire. For the speedy despatch of the companies here, he (with the only help of Samuel Norton, in the absence of Edward Gorges, who is sick, and Mr. Stallenge, being not in the country, and Mr. Smith, being employed at the musters in Somersetshire) has used all diligence for viewing them, and distributing the armour and apparel, and will send them away with the first wind that shall serve.—Bristol, 14 August 1601.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Mayor of Bristol.” 1 p. (87. 100.)
Captain Wigmore to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 13–14. Upon the 12 of this month Sir Francis Vere arrived at Myddelborough. His coming hath diversely affected men here : but the reports of the State of Ostend delivered in so hard terms by some principal men which did accompany him, hath very much perplexed these people, who, out of their proper dispositions, are but too apprehensive of every mean accident. But I have been with Sir Francis Vere, whose wound I have seen twice dressed, and do find, by the relation both of his surgeon and physician, that there is an assured hope of his recovery, wherein himself is no less confident than in this, that the town of Ostend is not like to run any great hazard for six or four weeks; which opinion was at his departure confirmed in Council by the governor and others of the town. He further saith that he hath required the States to send forthwith unto Middleborough some deputies to confer with him. Within these ten or fourteen days he hopeth to return to his late charge, the which is rather in the compass of my wishes than of my belief; for wounds in the head are not so soon recovered. The state whereof must have been desperate had he stayed two days longer in Ostend, for when he was dressed, at the only noise of the cannon fresh blood issued abundantly, not only from his wound but also out of both his ears. So a council being called of the principal commanders of the town, he was importuned to retire himself into Zealand, being eight days before altogether unable to discharge any duty of command. Thus much I have learned from Sir Francis Vere himself. The resolution in council for holding Ostend must have been fortified by the supply of two thousand very choice men carried thither but yesterday by young Chatillion, for I am not of the opinion that there are already too many men in the town; seeing the same may be so abundantly victualled as daily it is, whereof the deputies here are infinitely careful, and that in conclusion the controversy must be decided by the virtue and valour of men's hands.—Flushing, this 13th of August 1601.
PS.—Since the writing hereof, those troops which, under young Chatillion, had gained the road before Ostend, are this day returned to these parts, enforced thereto by the extremity of this stormy weather, herein, as I hear, agreeing with the Governor's opinion, who concluded that they had already men enough within the town. The Governor hath lately caused a ditch to be cut for the letting in of the sea, which course falling out aright, not only all the most dangerous approaches will be drowned, but the enemy enforced to raise the siege. I hope shortly to advertise you the effect of this resolution and the further determinations of the States' deputies, who within these five or six days are expected to be with Sir Francis Vere.—Aug. 14.
Holograph. Seal. 2 pp. (183. 6.)
Sy[mon] Bassyll to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 14. Commanded by your Honour to proceed with the front of your house, I have made Mr. Coape therewith acquainted, who likes very well of it, if so be that the new addition in the court were correspondent; the which, if your Honour's pleasure were to have performed, is impossible, the season of the summer being so far spent; but that side next the court may be coloured like unto bricks, and being done at such time as the plaster is green, it will retain his colour very well. Touching the front, I have conferred with the masons and bricklayers what more speedy course may be had. I likewise have caused our purveyor to provide at Oxford thirty tons of stone for tables, crest and piers; other some we will borrow here that is the Queen's. And for that we are to make the front with two fair returns of square windows, the one proportionable to the breadth of your gallery and the other answerable next my Lord Herbert's house, I am to entreat you not to assure yourself of the finishing thereof by the beginning of October.—From Cecil House, this 14th of August 1601.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (183. 7.)
Mar. Darell to the Earl of Nottingham, Lord Admiral.
1601, Aug. 15. I received very lately direction from you for the speedy providing of three months' victuals for 1,490 men to serve in the Wastspite and the rest of that fleet. The proportion for one of those ships was sent away this morning. For the rest, I hope it shall be all shipped away from hence without fail by the 27th of this month, if we may find here upon the river sufficient store of hoys or other vessels for the carrying of the same down.—From her Majesty's Storehouse at Tower Hill, 15th August 1601.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Mr. Dorrell.” 1 p. (87. 101.)
Richard Staperr to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 15. According to the commandment of my Lord Admiral and you given us at Greenwich, upon the notice of the sight of some ships from Plymouth supposed to be Spaniards, we, the owners of a ship called the Darling, did put our victuals aboard, and made our ship ready to have served her Majesty if occasion had so required : but when we understood those ships were friends, we put the rest of our lading aboard to proceed upon our pretended voyage into the Straights, so that now we are ready, but our mariners being pressed away for her Majesty's ships, we are suitors to the Lord Admiral to spare us 30 or 40 men, to perform our voyage withal. And because we know my Lord Admiral is severe and strict in those matters, I desire your commendation of this motion to him, wherein this bearer is to solicit him, the rather because we going not in due time cannot return again before the summer, which may put us in peril to be surprised. Her Majesty by this last patent granted us, allows us 500 mariners yearly to perform our said voyage, except her Highness doth set out her whole navy. In regard whereof, and for that we have no way to raise our farm of 4,000l. per annum but only by our trade, I beseech your favour herein.—London, 15 August 1601.
Holograph. 1 p. (87. 102.)
[Sir Robert Cecil] to Lord Scrope.
1601, August 15. I have received your letter of the 1st of August, by which I perceive how great difference there is in the estimate of the English and Scottish bills : wherein her Majesty doth well like of your consideration, and would have you cause George Nicholson to show the King thereby that it is not Scotland which has most cause to complain. But where you do say you dare not assent that these late offences be first redressed, to the satisfaction of some part of the poor ones : or that bill for bill be answered in such an extreme cause, neither can resolve what were fit for you to do : her Majesty has commanded me to write you thus much for your better direction how to carry things in their right sense. That as her Majesty desires above all things the true and just conservation of the peace between the two Crowns, being that which is both acceptable to God, agreeable to her own heart, and profitable for her people (whose quiet and contentment she holds so dearly, as all men know). If the laws of the Border established by the treaties were mutually observed, there could be no question of the continuation of the amity (to which both Princes are so affected) because common experience teaches us that the effects of these her Majesty's Christian cares depend principally upon the good disposition and discreet government of those that have the charge reciprocal of the opposite wardenry; and that if any particular “pyke” [pique] or quarrel be so grown as that they shall not both be content, in respect of the common good, sometime to lay aside those passions to which most men are subject, surely there will always be found interruptions to cross the quietness intended, especially by such as are cunning to fish in troubled waters [who] will ever be blowing the coal between them : besides the vulgar themselves (whereof alway the worst disposed are the greatest number) will take the boldness more and more to practise and commit offences, because they will hope that the private differences of the officers will always hinder the general satisfaction : of which matter, my good Lord, I am commanded to speak at this time, the rather because very lately the Lord of Newby was sent up from the Lord Johnston only to profess and protest his vehement desire to do all good offices, and his constant resolution to his uttermost power to hold all correspondence with your Lordship, so as he might be persuaded that you intended the like towards him. Herein he had his answer as was fit by Mr. Vice-chamberlain and myself, who plainly made him see that her Majesty had chosen you as a nobleman of extraordinary quality, able to govern and willing to do all things that might advance the quiet of the Borders; and that she had commanded you to leave no good means unused that might reform these great enormities. Now therefore, seeing there is so great a profession made, [and] that her Majesty has many other occasions of troubles and expense, surely it shall be a very good piece of service for your Lordship so to proceed in these causes of the Borders as that it may appear that if the opposite do his best endeavour to satisfy in things required at his hands, that some things shall be borne with till the time afford better commodity, and that those things which are not in their power to be performed shall not be objected to amid those things which may be accomplished : and yet you may make it known unto them, that it is only out of her Majesty's great affection to the amity, and not that they should expect at her hands as a due anything which the just rules of the treaty bind not her unto. This course, my Lord, shall take away all opinion of any contrary disposition either in her Majesty or her ministers. This beginning shall make the people on both sides conform themselves when they discern what is intended. Her Majesty means not you should put up any dishonour or wilful injury either to yourself or to her people, but only to observe this rule, that if he do his best indeed (of which your judgment can best inform you) that you will rather seek to reduce things to good order than to carry yourself to all strictness out of any particular mislike to him, and so much the rather because he shows so good intention.
To conclude, it would be a great commendation to you if you could govern that Wardenry without fetching every day direction from hence : and surely for that, Sir Robert Cary takes a very good course, for he goes on with that which is best for the service, advertises when it is done, and in his proceeding with the opposite, whensoever he sees he does his best, he takes it de bene esse, and so keeps all good correspondency : a liberty which the Queen does willingly leave to you, being one of whom she is so well persuaded, and the fewer questions you ask (so it be not for very extraordinary matters) the better she is pleased.—Court at Wind[sor], 15 August 1601.
Draft, principally in Cecil's hand. 5 pp. (87. 102, 2 to 4.)
Richard Carmarden to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 16. Desires to know what effect his letter to the Queen by Mr. Darcey has taken. If neither her Majesty nor the Lord Treasurer grant his desire, he must sell or pawn such things as he has to satisfy his debts; or else yield his body. Encloses a paper showing what her Majesty has gotten by his services.—London, 16 August 1601.
Holograph. 1 p. (87. 104.)
The Enclosure :
Statement of services done by Richard Carmarden to her Majesty within the space of 18 years : whereof her Majesty has received the benefit into her coffers.
Includes : gain in 1583 by the overlengths of clothes “which Sir Walter Ralegh had in farm for 7 years to break the ice”: by the advancement made of Smythe's farm of customs and subsidies in 1585: in 1585, by advancing the ports demised to Sir Francis Walsingham for 7 years, and the gain since the surveyors had the same in charge : by continuing the advancement of Smythe's farm from 1588 to 1600, during which time Sir Henry Billingsley was collector : total gain to her Majesty, 383,956l. : in addition to future benefits by the customs and subsidies and the impost of currants, 32,000l. Also the procuring of the increase of the revenue of French wines, by the first lease granted to Mr. Swynnerton.
1 p. (87. 103.)
Jh. Trevor to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 16. Thanks Cecil for his late favourable speeches of him delivered to her Majesty.—Chatham, 16 August 1601.
1 p. (87. 105.)
Captain Holcroft to Sir Robert Cecil.
[1601,] Aug. 16. The winds have been so contrary that we have not had any news of our General since his going from hence. In his absence, we have received letters from the States condoling his hurt. They entreat him to husband the powder, affirming that, if we continue to spend as we have begun, all the provisions of the provinces will not serve our turn. The same day that these letters arrived, which was on Thursday last, Mons. Chastillon, the Colonel of the French, with twenty two companies of several regiments (as six of his own, four Scots, four of the Walloon Regiments, which sold us the Fort of St. Andrew, and some other Dutch companies) came into the Road. Mons. Chastillon came himself into the town the next night, with some of his captains, but the most of his troops are by foul weather driven back into Zealand, excepting only some few who were shipped in men-o'-war. Since we cut our dyke, it is grown much wider by force of the water which is let out of the town ditch through it, and now the spring tides come in, we doubt it will be too much enlarged. The enemy have been very still these three days, seldom shooting with artillery but when by us they are provoked unto it—as when we send out some few men to discover their nearest trenches, they presently taking the alarm stand up to defend them, and then our cannon doth them very much hurt. On Friday in the afternoon, we sent out two hundred English and one hundred Dutch to force their trenches which are upon the plain sand between the dunes and our half-moon, but we found them so well manned and so high that we could not force them. In this business Captain Maddisson, who led the English, was shot through the right arm, and one lieutenant killed and five men. There were hurt about fourteen. The enemy could not receive much disadvantage by this sally, but only by our cannon which without doubt did them much hurt. Their nearest trenches are within thirty foot of our pallisadoes before our half-moon, and so have been ever since Friday morning, which makes us believe, and we are so informed by letters from Calais, that they are about a mine towards our half-moon, but the half-moon is so much fallen away since the cutting of the dyke that it will not lodge any men, and unless it be blown up by their mine, it will be washed away by these spring tides. The States' army is dispersed and unable to divert the enemy. The Count Ernest is at Berke with three or four thousand men for the fortifying of the place. Mons. Chastillon is sent here with two thousand, the rest are disposed into the frontiers. Daily we lose men which run to the enemy, and have taken one on Thursday night who gives great suspicion of his intent to do the like, but will confess nothing. I think he shall be put to the rack, for he was placed as sentinel on one of our trenches, and was taken by those who were placed at “perdures,” a good way without the trench, having left his armour and pike in the place where he stood. Our munition is sent in small parcels and sometimes cannot be landed in a long time. The supply of men who came last over was very well liked, having very few unable men amongst them. Of those, two are standing companies, whereof Sir Edward Read hath one and Captain Crofts the other. On Wednesday last, Captain Foster was shot through the head with a musket, being in guard in the “porkapy.” His company is not yet disposed of, for aught we know, for Captain Ridgewell is not yet returned from our General.—Ostend, this Sunday the 16th of August, Sti : antiquo.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“1601.” Seal. 2 pp. (183. 10.)
Henry Appleton to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 16. I received your letters on the last of July for the provision to be made for three hundred soldiers, which were embarked at Leigh on the same day, and departed on August 6th. During that time they were victualled by the country for five days. The first day I allowed them ten pounds in money, eight pence a man, for being without money or victuals they began to grow mutinous. I send by this bearer the brief of the whole charge.—From South Benfleet in Essex, this 16 of August 1601.
Signed. ½ p. (183. 11.)
Francis Cherry and John Mericke to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 17. Since our last being with your Honour, there is received a letter from one Oliver Lysset, Englishman, from Poland, who was sent from hence with letters from the Russ Ambassador, as also from the Company, in the month of December last into Russia. In Poland, near to the borders of Russland, he was stayed at Orsse and kept prisoner by the Captain thirteen days. After he was examined who he was, in which time there returned out of Russia the Lord Chancellor of Letto who was ambassador of the King of Poland. He having understanding of the said Lysset, caused he should be brought after him and kept in irons in a chief place of his own. But of late he is set at liberty upon sureties until the King's further pleasure be known.
Of sundry letters which he had with him, we understand only of the Russ Ambassador's letter unto the Emperor, which was opened and perused. He hath been very hardly used by the Pole.
And now, by reason of the wars in Leyvfland between the Poles and the Swethens, there is no hope of passage that way by land into Russia, but from Lubeck by shipping. Therefore the messenger that is to be sent into Russia should be despatched by the end of this month. Those seas will shortly be frozen and then there will be no passage.
Some nineteen years past there was sent unto her Majesty an ambassador from the Emperor of Russia, Evan Vassillewich, whose name was Phedor Pyssimskey, as we do suppose, about some such affairs as is now written of.
Our liberty for the merchants hath of late years continued in very good terms, as appeareth by the last privilege sent unto her Majesty, and all other strangers were restrained to trade up into the country from the seaport till this last year.
Concerning the merchants there was nothing to be effected, only the Persia voyage, which grant hangeth upon conditions, as your Honour knoweth.—London, the 17th of August 1601.
Holograph by Mericke. 1 p. (183. 12.)
Vin. Skynner to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 18. Prays Cecil to remember him to the Lord Treasurer for 14 days' absence in Lincolnshire.—Westminster, 18 August 1601.
Holograph. ½ p. (87. 108.)
Captain R. Wigmore to Sir Robert Cecil.
[1601], Aug. 18. This day is returned from Ostend a gentleman of this garrison called Captain Bridges, who reports that the late cut ditch already begins to work excellent effects; for the stream which enters thereat carries itself from the counterscarp of the town, and falling upon the plain grounds towards Isabella, has drowned the near approaches of the enemy, and will within few days more make all the rest of his most dangerous works altogether unprofitable. The greatest part of those gabions which the enemy had placed below the sandhills were yesterday carried away with the sea; at which time they were likewise mightily puzzled in recovering the “ryce” and boards from their drowned trenches. The enemy was likewise seen to remove 17 pieces of great artillery from one battery which he has in the sandhills, whether to place the same in another place of more advantage is not known, but some have thereby taken occasion to guess that the Archduke means to raise his siege. Others, now coming from Ostend in Captain Bridges' company, affirm that a Spaniard running from the enemy, and yesterday yielding himself to the Governor, has assured upon his life that within 8 days the Archduke will raise his siege. What he will do is uncertain : but most certain it is that within the town are 6,000 gallant men, plenty of whatsoever can be wished for (except straw and “ryce” or bavens): the passage so open to supply all defects, as that yesterday at high noon 2 companies, with their colours displayed, entered the town in despite of the enemy. And this day those late supplies which under the conduct of Chattillion were going to Ostend, and by the winds forced to put “roomer” with this place, are hasting thither again; so as if the Cardinal will needs “opiniater” this siege, it cannot well be discerned how (besides an infinite scorn) he can escape his apparent ruin. So as I nothing doubt, but am rather assuredly persuaded that you shall receive much comfort, and her Majesty exceeding glory, by this princely assistance which lately it has pleased her Highness to vouchsafe unto this distressed people.
The Count Maurice is coming into these parts, and will be at Middleborough upon Thursday next. The noble Sir Fr. Veare recovers, albeit that within these 3 nights his wound has bled in so strange a manner that one of his physicians began to despair of him. When I told him the Archduke began to remove his artillery, his answer was that he was sorry therefor, because his hopes had promised him that he should have been master of them.—Vlushinge, 18 August.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“1601.” 1 p. (87. 110.)
Sir John Peyton to the Council.
1601, Aug. 18. My Lord of Southampton (by reason of his close imprisonment and want of all manner of exercise) being grown weak and very sickly, has desired me to send unto you his letters of petition here enclosed; upon which occasion I have prepared for him another lodging. But without some exercise and more air than is convenient for me to allow without knowledge from your Honours of her Majesty's pleasure, I do much doubt of his recovery.—Tower, 18 August 1601.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Lieutenant of the Tower.” ½ p. (87. 111.)
Sy[mon] Basyll to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 18. Detailed report of works upon a certain building [probably Cecil House in the Strand].—From the Office of the Works “at Scotland,” 18 August 1601.
Signed. Endorsed :—“Mr. Controller of the Works.” 1½ pp. (87. 112.)
Manor of Boskenwine.
1601, Aug. 18. Inquisition taken at Launceston Castle, before Francis Buller, in which John Killigrew and the manor of Boskenwine are concerned.
Latin. Certified copy.pp. (141. 225–8.)
Captain Holcroft to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 18. We have abandoned the half-moon, which was placed before our porkupie, it being so eaten with the water as that it was not guardable. The same night the enemy joined his approaches to the palisadoes. This day we hear by a spy, whom the Governor had employed into the enemy's camp, that in our sally, whereof I wrote to you by Captain Brett, the enemy lost about eighty men with our muskets and cannon. He tells us also that they despair of all means, but only by mine, to get the town, and that henceforward they mean not to shoot with their artillery but for ordinary defence, and that we have dismounted and spoiled about fifteen of their cannons. The same spy saith that he hath been in the two mines, wherewith they mean to blow up our porkupie; but when we see how great a stream of water they are to undermine, we do not believe they will be able to prevail. On the South side, they have brought their approaches to the river, which runs to Grotendurst, and on the further side of the fort which we razed and that we have suspected they would make a royal battery, but they are so long about it, and do heighten it so much, and extend it along the river from us, that we imagine now they will make it a redoubt. The most of Mons. Chastillion's troops were this last night disembarked, and his Excellency hath sent him four companies more to make up his command twenty six companies. The enemy hath this day shot more with cannon than in three days before, and especially upon a sluice we have in our counterscarp, which when they have broken can but take the use of drawing it up from us, for we can provide to stop it so as we may always have our ditch full of water. At this instant we see the enemy's quarter, on the West side towards Albertus, on fire, which we imagine to have been some munition.—Ostend, this Tuesday night the 18th of August 1601, sti : antiquo.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (183. 13.)
Richard [Bancroft,] Bishop of London, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 18. At the receipt of your letter Mr. Watson was with me. I find him very tractable to whet his pen against the Jesuits, and to omit that other great matter. I hope you will read the treatise which I left with you, and send it back to me with your opinion of it : I have another of the same party's, which I think will please you. I will do my uttermost in this service.—At Fulham, this 18 of Aug. 1601.
Holograph. ½ p. (183. 14.)
Pe. Proby to Sir John Stanhope.
1601, Aug. 19. The 8th inst., Mr. Secretary Cecil sent his footman for me, and let me know he was to use me in some service by her Majesty's appointment, willing me to attend him to the Lord Treasurer's, and after to the Lord Keeper's. That evening he told me the same was not ready, appointing to send to me to the Tower or my house when he was ready therein, wishing me to be certainly there, which accordingly I have been, and yet heard nothing of him. Hearing that Mr. Lambard was sick at Greenwich, and desirous to have seen him but for this appointment of the Secretary's, not knowing the importance of that service his Honour would use me in, I durst not go hence. And this afternoon I am told that Mr. Lambard is dead, which I held my bounden duty to acquaint her Majesty with by your means. Notwithstanding he was not here since the 10th of July that he had the money and reckoning : but the service performed by myself, my clerk and my son, whom I purpose to use therein for her Majesty's good hereafter if I continue. From the 21 January that we entered the office, I have had the keys, and not he, I have done the service with his privity, and coming hither once weekly in two terms only. If her Highness' purpose be to hold the place comptable, it shall be faithfully done by me and those I will use; yet if her Majesty will be pleased to bestow it on me, it is no charge to her Highness, and I will surrender my 40l. pension for it, and give the widow 100l. for her calendars, and perform all her Majesty's service gratis, where heretofore and in other like places she pays. And this I would do because I am already entered, and would train myself and my sons to do her Majesty service. But for my protection in doing the service honestly and faithfully for the Queen, I would pray that you might be in the patent as my Mr. was, though I supply it.—19 August, At the Treasury of Records in the Tower, 1601.
PS.—I beseech you keep Mr. Secretary's calling of me secret except to the Queen.
Holograph. 1 p. (87. 115.)
Ja. Hudson to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 19. These gentlemen, who came from Scotland with him, are bound for France to the Duke of Lennox, the King's Ambassador : i.e. Mr. Oglebye, of a good house and pretty living, and Mr. John Wardlaw, a young man, a scholar—gentlemen of fair and honest condition. Mr. Hew Crawford, who came out of friendship thus far, and to see the countries and this city, is to return to Scotland : and is an honest and religious man. They pray for Cecil's passport.—London, 19 August 1601.
Holograph. 1 p. (87. 117.)
Robert Jermyn to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 19. The townsmen of Bury, being mechanical and trades men, thirst for a corporation; not only to draw unto themselves their popular government, and to wring authority out of the hands of Sir H. North, Sir N. Bacon, Mr. Mawe and Mr. Smith, both counsellors of the law, Mr. Barber, Mr. Dandy, and “ourselves,” commissioners for the peace in that town; but also to exempt themselves from the common charges of the country, which now being rich and able, they are made subject unto. Also, to set upon their market, which is now very free and frequent as any dry town of England, such impositions and colours of forfeitures as cannot but either impoverish the country neighbours, or bring ruin on the whole town. The above named do not seek the continuance of that authority they hold : but only desire that this sudden humour of the townsmen may be either clearly purged by Cecil's wisdom, or so tempered as that they and their neighbours may find equal good. Many other consequences of weight, such as the maintenance of the ministry of the Gospel (the crown and glory of the town) which their corporation will not be able to bear out, and the division which the new state will breed, they could produce.—Bury, 19 August 1601.
Holograph. 1 p. (87. 118.)
Richard Staperr to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, August 20. Received Cecil's letter by Mr. Honnyman, and because he had none sufficient near Florence for such a matter, they resolved it was best to send the same to John Barker, dwelling at Pisa, a man of good discretion and of 8 years' continuance there, factor to Richard Aldsworth, merchant of this city, who has written Barker for the better accomplishment of Cecil's command. Has sent Cecil's letter to Barker, enclosed in one of his own, to Geffry Luther, his factor at Venice, by the post of Antwerp, and from Venice it goes by another post to Pisa. Thanks Cecil for sending him the Lord Admiral's pass.—London, 20 August 1601.
Holograph. ½ p. (87. 119.)
Sir Thomas Egerton to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Aug. 20. In the midst of your business, give me leave to remember you that if the purpose hold for a Parliament, time slips fast away, and will spend, in the framing the warrant, and making the writs (which are many, and of sundry kinds) and the delivering of them. Howsoever the progress proceed, this occasion must not be overpassed, which I commend to your good consideration. Myself am here out of the sunshine, ready to all I am commanded, as my weak health will serve, and desire to rest in your good favour.—York House, 20 August 1601.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Lord Keeper.” ½ p. (87. 121.)