Cecil Papers: December 1601, 21-25

Pages 527-531

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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December 1601, 21–25

Wm. Stallenge to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Dec. 21. The 3rd inst. I certified you of the Jesuit received from Sir John Gilbert, and therewith sent his letters for the redeeming of the gentleman that is prisoner in the Low Countries. And whereas Sir John Gilbert was then determined to have sent away 5 of his company, to have redeemed for themselves and one other which remaineth with the prisoner that I have, he is now other ways determined, and will not that any of them depart from hence until the Englishmen here undernamed be set at liberty, viz.: Captain Sparow, Thomas Kindslie, Henry Curry, Captain Crofts, Captain Scott and Captain Fortescue; and to that end hath caused the Jesuits to write by two Portingal merchants that he has discharged from hence to be embarked at Barnstaple for Lishborne. These Englishmen, as I understand, are prisoners, some at Madrill, some in Lishborne, and the rest in Galicia, so that unless Sir John send also some of these Jesuits as he first pretended, I doubt they may remain there, and the Jesuits here, a long time before either of them be at liberty. These two that are in my house, so far as I can understand, are the chiefest of their company. The one named Fernando Cardin (which I have by your order) has travelled much, and by report of such as be of judgment is the better “devine.” The other, which I received at the request of Sir John Gilbert, has been a schoolmaster, but thought here by men of understanding to be a very good “Latines.” I do not find them obstinate, as many others of their profession are, but that they will be contented in kind sort to discourse of religion, and yield their reasons without offence, not meddling, but rather condemning such of their opinion as presume to deal in princes' causes or matters of estate. These two men are desirous to remain, for all the rest of their company and themselves, until such persons be set at liberty as are required for them, which in my poor opinion were fittest for divers respects. Sir John Gilbert himself is so uncertain in his proceedings as for my own part I know not where to find him, and therefore have thought meet to certify you thus much.
At my going from hence to London, there were certain parcels of goods brought home in his prize that, as he said, were claimed by the Flemings, which he promised should remain unseen until the rest were all divided. But in my absence he caused the said goods to be removed into another cellar, where, as he saith, there hath been stolen out more than 200l. worth of silks and other things; but the general opinion is, himself, and others by his direction, have done it, and for my own part, I think no less, considering there was no cause to remove them from the cellars wherein they were first placed by themselves. It may be you shall understand thereof by other means, and therefore I have thought it my duty to write my opinion therein.
The 6 weeks' victuals I am appointed to provide for her Majesty's ships and the rest of their company in Ireland, will be all ready to be laden here as soon as the ships come for it; but before the same can be despatched from hence, I shall need some more money, wherein I beseech your favour with my Lord Treasurer as occasion may be offered. The whole estimate for the service is 2,471l. 14s., whereof I have received 1,000l, having left my man in London to receive the rest and remit it hither by exchange, or by the carrier of Exon, as he best so may.—Plymouth, 21 Dec. 1601.
Holograph. 1 p. (90. 14.)
Sir John Gilbert to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Dec. 21. These are to thank you in behalf of Captain Tolkerne, not doubting but his sufficiency and good behaviour in the affairs committed to his charge shall prove no less than I have promised in his behalf. I received a letter from Sir Walter Ralegh wherein he used your name, that you had a purpose to set forth my ship and pinnace for the coast of Spain, which accordingly shall be performed with the greatest expedition that may be, and I hope they shall be ready for a wind within these ten days But I thought good to advertise you my opinion in the shipping of the company, that it will be a good course to imprest them for the service, in respect that the greatest part of 100 marks' charge may be thereby saved for the performance whereof I desire your warrant. But if you be not pleased to stand wholly to the hazard of their pay during the voyage, then the captain may at sea make them offer of half pay, and half thirds, or put them to their choice whether they will take, wherein according to your farther directions (for which I will attend) I desire to stand to the one half, as of the ship and her victuals The conclusion whereof I refer to my coming up, and will meantime use all diligence for their despatch—Fort by Plymouth, 21 Dec. 1601.
Holograph. 1 p. (90. 17.)
The Earl of Rutland to [the Council].
1601, Dec 21. The necessity of my estate enforces me to trouble you with this my humble suit. Being here still confined to this place by her Majesty's pleasure, and your order, I find myself diversely distressed. The want of provisions to sustain me and my small family in this hard winter, the season of the year past to make supply but with great difficulty and at excessive charge, the trouble laid on my poor tenants, that daily bring my fuel and other necessaries 17 or 18 miles through a foul country, do much straiten me and weary them. I have no means to satisfy my own debts, being great, nor the portions of my sisters yet unpaid, but by sale of lands : and I see that none will buy of me while I continue thus. Again, I am prosecuted with divers suits of law, in sundry courts of justice, by my unkind aunt of Rutland, upon false and indirect grounds : she taking advantage of my misfortune, and not sparing to add her help to depress me lower. Out of that mind she aims at the inheritance of sundry my lands of good value, plainly conveyed to me by the deceased Earl my uncle, and at the titles of my dignities due to me (as I have ever taken it) by my birthright, and depending on my Earldom. These are great matters, and do nearly touch me : they require more care, advice and defence than my unfortunate estate can yield, being weakened by loss of her Majesty's princely favour (whereat my heart sorroweth hourly) and, by this restraint, not in case to follow them with advice of such counsel as the weight thereof requires. Wherefore, I beseech you vouchsafe to be my mediators to her Majesty, that as her Highness, by her divine mercy, has left me safe in life and that little living I have, so she will now also please to grant me absolute freedom, that I may follow these weighty affairs thus prosecuted against me. I beseech you to implore some further grace for me and to assure her Highness of my loyalty hereafter, which I will perform even to the loss of this life she has given me.—Uffington, 21 Dec. 1601.
Cont. copy. Endorsed :—“Copy of my Lord's letter to the Council.” 1½ pp. (90. 20.)
William Parker, Mayor of Plymouth, and his Brethren, to the Council.
1601, Dec. 22. There are here 40 Spaniards or thereabouts sent by the Lord Deputy of Ireland, of which we have already advertised you, but there being no answer sent, we crave your order what shall be done with them, and to appoint Mr. Harris, Vice-Admiral here, or some other, to see the disposing of them. I the Mayor, by your order, have disbursed for the setting forth of a ship and pinnace in her Majesty's service, and for the billeting and payment of the mariners and sailors impressed and delivered to me to serve in her Majesty's ships, and for other her Highness' service, in all 600l. or thereabouts; and having often advertised some of you hereof, I being at great charge in seeking the same, cannot as yet be paid, which is too heavy for me to bear, and shall hardly be able to discharge the place I am called unto if you give not speedy order for payment of the same.—Plymouth, 22 Dec. 1601.
PS.—Her Majesty's ship the Nanperilla is at this present at Falmouth, and was there put in by reason of foul weather.
Signed as above. On the back :—“hast hast hast hast. From Plymmouth the 22 day of December at 4 of the Clocke in the afternoone. Aishburton half a nowre after—in the nyght 22 of December. Exon after 9 in the morng the 23 daye of December. Hunyton almost 3 at afternown 23 day of Desember. Crewkern after 7 night December 23. At Shafton at 6 in the mornyng being Thursday the 24th. Rd. at Andever at 6 at night being Thursday. Harfart Burg past 2 in the moring.” 1 p. (90. 21.)
Thomas Smythe to Sir Robert Cecil.
1601, Dec. 23. Hopes that the innocence of his cause will now, after 10 months' imprisonment, move her Majesty's heart. Prays Cecil to intercede for his liberation.
Signed. Undated. Endorsed :—“23 Dec. 1601. Mr. Smyth, prisoner in the Tower.” 1 p. (82. 81.)
Christopher Bulmer to Sir R. Cecil.
[1601, Dec. 23.] Petition for the wardship of the heirs and concealed lands of John Barker and John Payne, of Cheshire and Yorks respectively.
Note by Cecil, he is to have a commission, and if the suggestion prove true, will consider him in the composition.
Endorsed :—“23 Dec. 1601.” (P. 236.)
Robert Layng to Sebastian Harvey, in Lime Street.
1601, Dec. 24. I was never at any Christmas at such estate; I have not one penny to buy my dinner upon Christmas day. I dare not be so bold as to borrow any of you to relieve me withal, but if your favour might be so good to me as to relieve me with something, how so little that ever it be, it would come in good time to me. My necessity is so great, it causeth me to be shameless.—At the Counter, Poultry, 24 December 1601.
Holograph. ⅓ p. (89. 3.)
T., Lord Buckhurst to Mr. Secretary Cecil.
1601, Dec. 25. According to the ancient custom of housekeepers, this day I eat my Christmas pie in my own house, and after this day I will wait on her Majesty all this Christmas. I send you here-enclosed now a perfect conclusion with merchants of good ability for the pepper, and in my opinion (the crafty proceeding and combination of the merchants to keep down the price considered) a good bargain for her Majesty. Alderman Holliday and Alderman Spenser did do all their uttermost to have brought the price to 2s. 6d., but specially Holliday, not only himself refusing, but persuaded others. But now, I thank God, it is ended, and by this 10,000l. of ready money some help we shall have for the present. The estimate of this new shipping comes to above 25,000l.; God send us means to effect it. I pray you presently to impart to her Majesty this bargain enclosed, that it may have her approbation, for the which Alderman Moore and the rest do only attend, and then they will begin to deliver so much pepper as shall come to 10,000l., upon delivery of which we shall have 10,000l., and not before. I pray you return me also this enclosed, with signification of her Majesty's allowance to this bargain, this night if it be possible, and then tomorrow they will begin to deliver the said pepper. Alderman Moore, with his notable care and industry, and assuring them that if they refused it he and his friends would have it, has been the only cause it has had so good success, for there has been a notable combination against it.—25 Dec. 1601.
Holograph Endorsed :—“Lord Treasurer.” 1 p. (90. 22.)
Don Lluis de Carillo to —.
1601 Dec. 25./1602 Jan. 4. His Majesty has sent me a letter in which he tells me that I am to advise you that he has received the letters which you have sent him, and in it he tells me to say also that at the return of the Armada of Flanders, which is ready to start, they shall do all they can for the despatch to those parts, and if there is much delay they will send the men whom they can by the ships which we have here, though they are few. You need not be anxious about this, for I will have the greatest diligence possible to content you, and you may be sure before the month of May you will have aid of men and money.—En la Coruna, a quatro de Henero, 1601.
Endorsed :—“Wm. (sic) de Carillo, 1601.” 1 p. (84. 39.)
James Feilde to Mr. Preadis.
[1601, c. Dec. 25]. It is his unlucky hap to be Preadis' prisoner, and accused of matters of which his conscience is altogether clear. Details at length his early history. In London, by enticement of a perjured dyer, he misappropriated money, and then travelled in Flanders and France He was afterwards placed with the Earl of Essex's apothecary in the Strand, whence he stole a casket containing 26l. He then rode to Westchester, where he became acquainted with Mr. Physumans, the Jesuit, who made him acquainted with “the guide of these youths.” Went with the guide to Tredach (Ireland) where they took shipping for Crosic. Details his subsequent adventures in France, and the history of certain money now found upon him. He is persuaded the apothecary has been satisfied by his friends : if not, he will willingly be ruled by the law. As for the English book and the beads, he bought them by the Jesuit's means in Dublin : and the French book was given him by the master of the ship of Crosic. Prays Preadis to give him money for his journey and use in London : also for the return of his things.
Undated (“Christmastime”). Endorsed :—“1601.” 4 pp. (90. 84–5.)