Cecil Papers: December 1598

Pages 82-85

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 14, Addenda. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1923.

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December 1598

Fardinando Gorges to the Earl of Essex.
1598, Dec. 4. I am sorry to see that, for want of good counsel and provident care, the chief pillar of our state is brought to that exigency that there is a necessity to engage the whole for the preservation thereof. Although I know you understand of what consequence it is that you are to undertake, yet I cannot but put you in remembrance of some things. For you are now to have in your power the disposing of the hope and expectation of your nation, the life and welfare of your dread Sovereign, and to engage the fortune of yourself and your friends; and all in a most dangerous time, in a ruined state, and miserable country, upon a strong enemy by nature and long practice valiant, and expert, no stranger to us nor destitute of daily intelligence of our purposes, himself of a ripe knowledge of what he has undertaken, and of a proud spirit, his people's hearts in general full of contempt and malice to our nation, of late encouraged and made insolent by many victories. Thereby they have gotten experience and the use of their arms, have furnished themselves with all things necessary for prosecuting such a war: the hopes and assurance he has of supplies and relief from foreign parts, if he shall need them. Their bodies are also inured to all hardness, their number far exceeding what I have hitherto heard spoken of to be opposed against him; and generally they join in one to disburden themselves of a foreign government, as they hold it. All this your Lordship is in some sort to oppose by the contrary; for your old soldiers that you shall find there are discouraged and made cowards by overthrows received, and for the most part discomforted for want of necessary means and due respect in case of their extremity. The stores are disfurnished, the country wholly possessed by the enemy, the state divided, your new levies unpractised in the use of their arms, unacquainted with the wars, and unable long to continue their health in respect of the change of the country and their diet; your captains not experienced in the nature of those services. Further, your enemies here opposing themselves to detract both means and reputation from you; so that if you prevent not all that may ensue of the inconveniences, you shall but lose yourself, your friends, and your country. These I have not spoken as dissuading that you should undertake the recovering again by your virtue what others have lost through their follies, but only in discharge of my love and duty, to the end that you may foresee and prevent the inconveniences that are apparent to the world, both for the good of your country and preservation of your own honour. How I am affected to make one of this enterprise may easily be imagined, considering first it is my profession by which means I live, next the reason considered I have to loathe the manner of my living here, where, through cause of discontent and opinion of wrongs received, I hold myself unsatisfied; again, those I esteem my dearest friends are chiefly interested in it; lastly my love to my country and dutiful service to her Majesty command me thereto. Therefore without its and ands I am resolved to be one, and such a one as you shall think me worthy, unto whom since I have given power to dispose of my life, I wholly refer my reputation. From the Fort by Pl[ymouth], 4 Dec. 1598.
(P.S., in Gorges' hand). He begs Essex to lay apart all misconceit of his dear friend Sir Conyers Clifford. No one lives whom Essex may more freely dispose of. He will engage his reputation for the performance by Clifford of as much as he now protests for him.
3 pp. (199. 57.)
[Edward Nevill (fn. 1) ] to [the Earl of Essex ?]
[1598.] [Dec. 10.] Writes to clear himself from the foul stain of partiality wherewith some have taxed him, touching the title of Abergavenny. Quotes in support the cases of the Baronies of Beaudesert, Bothall, Berkeley, Latimer, Gillesland, Laware, and Holgatt.
2 pp. (141. 355.)
The Duc de Bouillon to the Earl of Essex.
1598, Dec. 19/29. II y a long temps que je n'ay eu de vos noles ny vous des miennes. Nous sommes au pes et vous vous an alles aus armees. Ces sauvages peuvent ils tant meriter que ce conte les aille ruyner a ceste grande roine le jugemant du danger des ennemis on du merite du serviteur. Mandes moy vos ressolussions et atandes les miennes par la tasche que la condission publique me donne: vous nous anvoyes ung ambassadeur que je sasche quel il vous est et quelles sont les humeurs. A Paris ce 29e dessembre.
Endorsed:—"D. of Bouillon, 29 Dec., '98."
Holograph. 1 p. (135. 221), (2.)
Arthur Champernowne to Mr. Reynolds, Secretary to the Earl of Essex.
[1598.], Dec. 19. On some occasions which may prove my lord's business I have written him this enclosed, (fn. 2) the which I will pray you to deliver unto his honour. And if it shall please him to return me any answer, it may be directed unto me at Chyldhay, Mr. Croukyearn's house, in Broadwyndsor near Croukhorne (Crewkerne) in Somersetshire, and the ordinary post may convey the same.—Chyldhay, 19 Dec.
Holograph. 1 p. Seal broken.
Addressed:—at the Court. (48. 1.)
Sir Christopher Blount to the Earl Marshal of England (Essex.)
[1598], Dec. 20. Your good allowance of my last shall not encourage me to double my former tediousness, only in this I render thanks for your gracious acceptance of my good meaning; and pray only that in your own undertakings you will be to yourself in private advice as you are to others, careful in your counsels; and then I will not fear but that honour to yourself, good to your country, and satisfaction to all that wish you well will ensue thereof. For the rest I doubt not but in short time pestilence, famine or my sword (which is ever at your command) shall help to confound them: in which charitable mind I recommend you to the protection of the Almighty. Dec. 20.
(P.S.) I beseech you to favour your mother and me in our request for her servant and my soldier.
Endorsed:—Sir Ch. Blunt.
Holograph. 1 p. (82. 75.)
The Duc de Bouillon to the Earl of Essex.
1598, Dec. Je sceu l'honneur que vous aves fet a ung gentilhomme quy est avec Monsr l'ambassadeur de l'avoir chery pour l'amour de moy et que vous aves agreable qu'il vous serve an Irlande, que je l'estime heureus d'estre pres de vous. N'aure je james une ocasion quy unisse nos corps comme nos afections le sont. Favorises le de vostre amitie et ne l'espargnes pas. II a commanse a porter les armes soubs ung sien oncle quy est fort gentil capitene quoy qu'il aye continue et commanse se mestier avec moy.
Endorsed:—"D. of Bouillon, commending a French gentilman to my L. Dec., '98."
Holograph. 1 p. (135. 221 (1).)
Walter Mathewe, Plymouth, to Sir R. Cecil.
[1598?], Dec. Prays for the repayment of the late disbursements made by the Mayor of Plymouth for the Queen's service there, by order of the Council. Explains certain items in the account, for the Cales (Cadiz) action, &c.—Undated.
Endorsed. 1 p. (135.)
Mission of Nicholas Cragius.
[1598.] ]Dec.] Ad Serenissimam et Invictissimam Heroinam Dominam Elizabetham, Anglie, Francie, et Hibernie Reginam Inclitam.
Prœfatio. Signed Nic. Cragius.
[Verses] De insigni eruditione serenissimæ et invictissimæ Reginæ Angliæ, qua omnes mundi reginas facile antecessit.
commencing:—Infælix pœnis urbem quæ etruxit Elisa,
Nam Roma instabiles æmula vertit opes.
followed by Oratio which after introductory paragraphs reads —Jussus sum agere serenissima Regina causam miserorum et afflictorum hominum, Mercatorum Danicorum, qui se ab excubitoribus, præfectis navium, et piratis Anglicis quibusdam inclementes tractatos, male multatos, violatos, spoliatosque queruntur. Qua de re multoties apud Majestatem tuam tum literis tum per legatos actum: sed extremum juris auxilium nondum adhibitum, ut acquiescere læsi potuerint . . . . . Quare quum vel hisce, vel quibuscunque, tandem de causis, afflictorum Danorum pauci ad sua recuperanda aliquid profecerint, plures autem adhuc in damno sint, supplices serenissimo Regi facti, obtinuerunt ut hæc legatio ad tuam Majestatem denuo decerneretur.
followed by a request for redress and the reasons why it should be made.
[P.S.] Superest præterea, serinissima Regina, alterum negotium mihi mandatum, quod sine denuo præstita audientia sive scripto a me cognoscere lubet, parebitur serenissima Majestatis tuæ voluntati summa cum voluntate.
Latin. In all 21 pp. (277. 7.)


  • 1. See the letter from Nevill to Essex in the Calendar of S. P. Domestic, under the above date.
  • 2. This is apparently the letter printed in C.P. VIII., 509.