Cecil Papers: June 1592

Pages 205-216

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 4, 1590-1594. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1892.

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June 1592

Francis [Tennant ?] to Archibald Douglas.
1592, June 4. Having in commodity by some of my good friends, it was needful by my duty to make your lordship advertisement touching the matters that are set down. First, I sent a writing lo Berwick unto your lordship to be sent unto London touching my private affairs, which I have no doubt but your lordship will peruse the contents of the same. Also, I wrote unto your lordship on the 25th May by Patrick Thomson. I am sorry that my letter will be found so true as I have set down, but I had never any other opinion upon the principal. Your lordship has understood before of the horrible murder of that noble man the Earl of Murray to the great dishonnour of the whole nation and to the sorrowful hearts of the godly in this country. Your lordship shall know that his lordship is not buried as yet and little memory of him who should punish that traitor that was executor of his blood; but indeed, my Lord, the ministers in this country, and principally in Edinburgh, have honorably discharged their duties to the King and to the nobility with sorrowful hearts, but it fears me, my good lord, that there has been over many in this country that has been participant upon that cruel murder, not only the smallest but it is supposed the principal, not only of the murder, but they thought to have made a general massacre in this country among the godly, if any misfortune had come to that good King of France; for, my lord, they have begun with that idol the mass in the north by that proud traitor the Earl of Huntley and his factions, which mass was said in Strabogey. Also, my lord, the earl of Arran has had that idol the mass in like manner : as your lordship shall know the said earl of Arran appeared in Edinburgh the 1st of this month; all the General Assembly charged him to appear; his lordship disobeyed. Upon the morrow, which was the 2nd of this month, he was charged again to appear : his answer was that he would not obey them but he was to make answer to the King. And so he has put off the time because the Parliament was to be finished this 3rd of this month which was Monday. But, my lord, the kirk is minded to make excommunication of him and some others, but I may write unto your lordship the verity of all things and in order that your lordship may advertise the Queen's Majesty. If her Majesty and her council prevent not these inconveniences, your lordship will hear of the greatest confusions that ever came upon any nation. For, my lord, the Earl of Arran says that he has done nothing without a warrant : consider this false dealing of this so great matters which the Lord will open up. For your lordship shall know for most certain that the King and the Kirk have been in such great controversy as ever your lordship heard. And the King is wholly bent to break the Kirk, if he can. The matters are not hid but the godly in this country mourn for the same. And, my lord, what unnatural speeches the King has given to the ministers I am ashamed to write unto your good lordship, and also what the King has spoken of James, Earl of Murray, saying that he was a bastard traitor, and John Knox a “schosthurun,” and Mr. George Balquhane a profane man and false, with all others that have defended him in his minority are now called traitors. My good lord, what shall fall out on this if it be not prevented ! Also your lordship shall know of most truth that there is a false knave that was at London called “Diksone of art of memoyr,” and he is a councillor to the earl of Arran, and he has been this long time in court and very humbly with the King. Now, my lord, it is come to these questions that this Diksone appeared the 2nd of this present month before the General Assembly and has avowed himself to be a papistical papist. And to defend their authority upon these questions the ministers were in great anger, and so, my lord, he was hurled to the tolbooth of Edinburgh, but the King will have him delivered again out. So my poor counsel unto your lordship is that you advertise her Majesty in time with the first, and if your lordship could find means at her Majesty's hands to cause the earl Bothwell to be relieved, it were a good action both for England and Scotland, for the ministers is sorrowful for him. For, if he were at liberty in this country, his lordship, with the earl of Angus, would put out all the papists out of the country. For your lordship shall know that the earl of Angus is the only nobleman this day in Scotland, and the Kirk and the town of Edinburgh will defend him because his lordship has done more good works in this parliament than all the nobility : and his lordship has won all the hearts of Scotland that love God and true religion (the Lord continue it!) as my good lord knoweth. In this conclusion, I take God to witness what I have spoken of your lordship and have caused others to speak, as Cronoyar Stewart can testify, but your lordship is wise to consider all things. I will most humbly require your lordship to write unto me in any matter that your lordship would have done touching any secret matters, and your lordship shall be advertised with the first, as soon as the ambassador here. Mr. Bowes got presence of the King the 2nd of this month in the Tolbooth of Edinburgh. As touching the Chancellor of this country, if his lordship be not found a traitor towards the religion and also towards England, I shall never be had in credit at your hands, for he is the principal defender of all the papists in Scotland. I pray God that the Queen's Majesty find not many in her country, to have been participant upon all this conspiracy in this country, for the king has spokeu these words that he will make the two parts of England his own when he lists to do so. These matters mean no good.
P.S.—My lord, they are to forfeit earl Bothwell and his sister, but it will make a great . . . . . . Earl Bothwell has cast down a letter the 1st of this month to the ministers declaring the treachery of the Chancellor. Would to God if her Majesty saw it, for that letter has sufficient probation against the Chancellor.—Edinburgh, 4th June, 1592.
Signed :—“Francis as you know.”
4 pp.
Sir Henry Lee to his brother Richard Lee.
[1592,] June 5. Since coming from London, I have received two letters from you : by the first an expectation of that which is n6w performed in the latter, that is the pheasants and your cock and hen of the great kind, which will be very much made of and purchase you many thanks both of me and others; withal I have received your oil, the goodness thereof you shall witness if, haply, you come into these parts. For any escape Count Morrys hath had I am very glad, but what the danger and mischief was and where, I have not heard. He hath need to Took well to himself, for surely he is a stumbling block in the King of Spain's way, which he will remove if he may. So there be as great motes in his eyes which the practice, or gifts, may wipe away, he will have his will, which God of his goodness ever forbid and prevent, as he hath done; but to avoid opportunities shall be necessary, and very great wisdom. What he (you write of) may do against Capt. Lee, either by himself or others, I take to be little; yet my lord Treasurer may do him hurt and my lord of Essex must do him good, which I assure myself he will. His troubles first spring of malice and by the same humour are nourished, both for and by the Butlers; besides some other respects, there is none will adventure his life more willingly to requite part of my lord's favour and goodness than he. My lord neither will nor can forget him, though he defers for a time, expecting more fit time or better opportunity. And yet, good brother, call sometimes upon my lord before his greater businesses make his favours to my cousin and his come too late. His enemies will adventure much to have their will, if my lord hath not already, or doth not, put in a supersedeas of force and good effect. My lord had a meaning to ride to Petworth, my lord of Northumberland's; whether it continues or no I would fain know, the rather for that he had a meaning at my coming from London to send me word, and to let me know the time and place to wait upon him. As for my own part I should wish, peace would best fit it, but when I consider the treachery of the Spaniard, with the security which will follow and every prince will easily fall into, and that the King, either in the one or the other, to bring about his treachery will leave nothing undone, there is nothing I wish more heartily than wars, so it might be with a full consent of such princes as have before time, and likewise now of late, tasted of his bitterness both in action and in practice; and since, by this means, he doth and will ferret us in our country far from him self, wherein he hath many advantages, I wish though somewhat too late, we might learn the same lesson from him, nowhit doubting but our advantages would be as many and greater : so he may go forward with his designs, and safely at home, he much careth not what he spends abroad; wherein in few years he will work wonders, especially if a peace be joined with all, and if God's will be to give him longer life, there will no prince live long or in safety if he once mislike him, and their greatest safety will be to trouble his determinations at home, and that we our selves alone, with the help of such as I know are willing, will not be able; but if France might make the “trenyte,” Spain would not be much feared long. But, good brother, some, and a great some, of our counsel will not have it so, and to their many and great reasons (in which her Majesty doth most incline) will force it so, but you shall find, if I be not deceived, the greatest treasons cloaked under this colour of peace that ever was, a peace much like the friendship that was commonly pretended and believed between the late King of France and the Admiral. And besides if Spain doth fear her Majesty and the force of England, as undoubtedly he doth, both in respect of Spain, Portugal and the Low Countries, then next her Majesty it behoveth my lord of Essex (whom I much honour and will do ever) to look to himself. Not for that I would have him afraid of shadows, but well to consider what shadows they be the King of Spain dealeth with with such as he misliketh; and how much that fear of his would be diminished with his lack, who seeth not, nay, who feareth not, that loveth his country, her sacred Majesty and him ? I have troubled you too far, but my excessive love to these three last named maketh me easily forget my self.—Wedoc farm, 5 June.
Holograph. Part of seal. 3 pp.
Sir Tuomas Morgan to Lord Burghley.
1592, June 6. Can advertise no certain news of the Duke of Parma. Since the report that he came towards the Spa (signified in his last) there have been different reports. Some say he is very sick but know not where : some, dead : other some that he is come to Brussels. Has sent of purpose to Brussels to know some certainty and had information that, on the night of Saturday the 3rd of this instant, there came into the town certain horsemen of the troops that had been in France, and with them some others who would not be known. Cannot learn whether the duke of Parma were there or no, but it is thought he was.
Count Barlemount is expected with the companies of horse and foot that had been in the frontiers. The States have written that Mondragon is gathering forces to besiege Hulst or Stenbergen and have asked for another company for their help. Cannot do this; but, if he sees occasion will assist them all he may. Has sent to Antwerp to euquire but cannot learn of any preparations made there either of men or artillery If any are being made it is from Ghent.
Can advertise nothing of Stenwick as he hears of nothing that hath been done there. : when anything shall happen knows that Burghley will be sooner informed thereof than he.
Humbly requests that his suit for his passport may be remembered.—Bruges, 6 June, 1592.
Signed. Seal. 1 p.
Nicholas Broke to the Queen.
1592, June 9. Petition for a lease in reversion of the manor of Godescrofte, Norfolk, for his long service as an ordinary gentleman waiter.
Endorsed :—9 June 1592.
Note by J. Herbert that the Queen grants the petition.
1 p.
Robert Carvill to Archibald Douglas.
1592, June 10. I received these letters from Francis Tennant this day, who desired me to direct them away to you so soon as I could, and therefore for the more speed, I have sent them away with a packet to Mr. Thomas Mills. Send me word how I may direct your letters to you if any more come hereafter, for if I can stand you in any stead you shall find me the same man I was.—Berwick, 10 June 1592.
Addressed :—Mr. Archibald Douglas, “at his lodging in Lyme Streatt.”
Holograph. Seal. ½ p.
James VI., King of Scotland, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1592, June 13. Recommending the bearer, Edward Fitzgerald, who has already received great favour at the hands of the Queen and Lord Burghley, and who now goes thither again, to the renewal of the same.—Holyrood House, 13 June 1592.
½ p.
H. Anderson to the Earl of Huntingdon, Lord President of the North.
1592, June 16. Sends copy of a letter from divers of his good neighbours of Newcastle, desiring reformation of that which has been sought for in open guild. They have entreated this bearer, Mr. Saunderson, to solicit this suit to his lordship. Truly there is very great defect in government there, and he is constrained, though a magistrate, to effect the complainants' request, but leaves particulars of their faults to the relation of the bearer, and the course of reformation to his lordship's wisdom. Only thinks that, for divers causes, the book of orders, as also of the charge of the town chamber, were fit to be sequestered of a sudden, and if his lordship were to make Mr. Deane, of Durham, and his own Secretary, Mr. Cole, or any other, sequestrators, the books would shew the grossness of their faults. Does not wish the matters to be further inquired into than since the death of the last bishop, for many of the great abuses are crept in since that time by the simplicity of some chief magistrates, and the great heartedness and wilfulness of some of the aldermen, who, taking advantage of the new charter, have combined together by making some great friends, to the no little charge of the town, as will appear by their books.
If this matter be committed to his lordship by the lords of the Council it will take away all opportunity of appeal; and if it is effected to the full, the town will be a most flourishing one both in service to God and duty to her Majesty; and to his honor so servicable that for this reason he hopes his lordship wil be willing to obtain through the lord Treasurer the granting of their request. Commends this to his lordship, not presuming to signify so much to the lord Treasurer, although he has always found him his singular good lord and is most bound to him in respect of several benefits received. If it stood with both their lordships' pleasures to write a letter of thanks unto Sir John Foster for his late service in Northumberland, it would, in his opinion, greatly encourage the old man.
There is now no gaol in the county of Northumberland to keep safe felons committed, or any other person for execution or contempt of law; it would be well if the lord Treasurer would grant his letters of survey for the gaol in Newcastle, what it is and what it may be made with reasonable charge. The fines and forfeitures of some few in that county will easily do it, and if their lordships think it necessary he will undertake the same, though it will not be levied without great displeasure and trouble. If this opinion be liked of, a letter of survey from the lord Treasurer could be rent presently by this bearer.—Hals well Grange, 16th June 1592.
Copy. 1 p.
Enclosure :
An Abstract of abuses committed in Newcastle.
1. By taking money out of the town chamber without convenient warrant. By excessive drinkings of Chamberlains, Auditors and such like. By charging the town with suits about coal and other expenses which the coal owners or co-partners ought to sustain, and by such other means the town stock and revenues be wastefully consumed, so that in Henry Anderson, W. Riddell and H. Chapman their mayoralties 10,400l. was received in ready money and yet the town left in debt 1,950l.
2. The town disbursed at least 5,500l. for the ground lease, besides great sums in procuring a new charter to make the town capable thereof and received again of the co-partners but 2,000l. Yet the coalmines be let with such unreasonable conditions (contrary to an Act of Guild), and the whole ground lease so husbanded, that the town doth rather lose than gain thereby. Whereas the co-partners might gain 1,800l. a year and that de claro, if they would work orderly but 8 pits, which they do not for private respects. Besides all which, the co-partners have many more years in the coalmines than they should have, the town wanting 59 years in the whole ground lease.
3 That the defendants may still dispose the town's treasure and lease as they will, elections be so complotted by gifts and promises, by bringing popish persons out of the country to give their voices and the like, that none but ground lessees (so called) have of late been brought into the mayoralty, and they have preferred sundry not well affected to the state (some contrary to the late Lord President's advice), called to the common council base fellows, and rejected and displaced sundry of those most faithful to the state.
4. Bad coals are covered with good and all sold for good. Corn is forestalled, ingrossed, reg rated and the price thereof indirectly and grievously enhanced. Our river is decayed with wrecks and by other means, and the walls of the town are suffered to decay. A great dunghill heretofore used to be taken away) is now grown so high (though it be near the river) that a horse may be lead over the same into the town, it lying without the town and upon the wall. And about 1,500l. worth of gun powder provided by the late Lord President for defence of the town is almost, if not altogether, made away; and there is no provision of corn for the burgesses as in times past hath been.
By which and like abuses, the burgesses are grown so poor that many of them borrowed 5, 4, 3 and some 2s. upon pazvns to lend towards the setting forth of a ship of war for Calais in William Riddell's mayoralty; towards which there was, or should have been, in readiness, besides the said store of gunpowder, twenty cast pieces of ordnance, with other munition provided by Edward Lewen in his mayoralty for three ships and a. pinnace against the Spaniard in anno 1588.—Signed :—“H. Sanderson.”
1 p.
Thomas Lysson, Mayor of Portsmouth, and others to Lord Burghley.
1592, June 16. By his order, they were proceeding to discharge certain goods brought in a Bysquin ship, but William Wynter denyeth to have them landed at the open quay, and would have the same landed at her Majesty's storehouses called the Docks, otherwise he would lose the cellarage of the said goods. The officers of the Custom house have by Burghley's special order lately taken a corporal oath to suffer no goods or merchandizes to be landed at any place but the open quay, without orders from him to the contrary. They have denied to have the goods landed at the dock and refuse to execute their offices in that place, considering their oath, and that the open quay is the fittest and most convenient place for landing the goods, and that there are good and convenient storehouses in the town for the good and safe keeping of the same. They desire his mind and direction herein.—Portsmouth, 16 June 1592.
Signed. 1 p.
Richard Yoong, Justice of the Peace, to the Lord Admiral [Lord Howard of Effingham] and Sir Robert Cecil.
1592, June 19. This present morning, I did apprehend the body of Charles Chester, according to your honours' directions, and have made search in his chamber and study, and do find there very few letters; such as they be I send them to your honours by this bearer, my servant. There are some score of vain and papistical books, especially in the Spanish language, all which I have locked up in his chamber with his apparel, armour and other things safely, until your honours shall give further directions, and I have committed him close prisoner to the Galehouse at Westminster, upon your honours' commandment. I find also in his chamber pictures, beads, mass-book, pax, shirt of hair, whips and other trumpery, but not above 16s. in money. All which are safe and forthcoming.—London, 19th June, 1592.
Holograph. ½ p.
John Heath to Robebt White.
[1592,] June 19/29. I have received your letter; assuring you I shall not fail to perform the first part of it, wherein lay all the care upon me; and whereas you will seek to trace it out by circumstances, have you patience and I will find it out directly; but assure yourself the point touches in that book, the 55 page and last line, “whereby England” hath bred this invective and is like to breed more. In my last letters dated the 12th of May, I made offer to Mr. White to help him to all these books that are left, besides some other things of great worth, but I hear no answer of them; but truly I have taken pains in many things and effected them, and have received nothing but bare words; as in discovering the author of the first answer to the proclamation, as your father requested me; the matter of Russell alias Molenuxe, which did much concern him; a book suppressed before it was printed, which was to my great charge; and, although the subjects on whom they wrote died before the matter wa3 ended, yet did I look for thanks (and something more) from your father whose honour was much touched in it; and whereas you desire to have two or three of them, I cannot help you to them for that they were never finished but were taken, being little more than half printed, and so burned; but truly I have now set up my rest, which is, to return home and lose the hopes I had and the labour which I have spent, or else to stand assured of sufficient to maintain me whilst I am here, and a pension fit for me if I be discovered and so driven to come home. Wherein if it please you to let me know Mr. White's pleasure therein, I shall think myself much bound unto you, and be ready to do you all the service that lieth in me to perform. For news, the Duke of Parma is at the Spa, where he will spend one month and then return into France. Great store of treasure is come hither for the payment of the soldiers here and in France, which is now a giving. Great matters are expected this year : many Spaniards are landed of late in Brittany and more are to come, but see you look well to Scotland, for I am assured they serve but their present turns with you, and that which they have long smothered will break out in flame shortly. Great joy here of the overthrow given in Brittany. I have sent you a book by the way of Flushing which I hope to come to your hands shortly. The last post before this gat three of those books to pleasure his friends; you might do well to know to whom he gave them. And thus being sick and not able to write much I desire you to hold me in your good favour.—Antwerp, 29th June [1592,] stila nova.
Holograph. Part of seal. 1 p.
Timber for Dieppe.
1592, June 22. Warrant authorising Mons. de Fauet, serjeant-major of the garrison of Dieppe, to transport from the port of Southampton fifty tons of timber meet for building.—Greenwich, 22nd June, 1592.
Privy signet. Sign manual. 1 p.
Siege of Steenwick.
1592, June 22. Chanson jetté hors de Steenwick par Pennemi aulx trenches faictes aus fcssees d'icelle ville.
De la folle entreprise
Des Contes de Nassau
A Steenwick la jolie
Ils donneront l'assault.
C'est tout a eulx follie,
Ils ne entreront pas;
Les bons soldats de Steenwick
Ne le souffriront pas.
Roan, ville fidele
Au catholicque foy,
Laquelle est delivre
Des forces du Biernoys
Par le bon duc de Parma,
Gouverneur general,
Qui a acquis gran gloire,
Et tous ses bons soldats.
Ils pensent a la foulle
Entrer en ce lieu,
Et nous donner la crainte
Ne pouvoir register
Vous coups de cannonades,
Dont vous vous fies tant,
Mais Dieu par as puissance
Fera, bien tourner le vent.
Retires, vous Angloises,
Et frees segment!
Vous aussi, Hollandaises,
Frisons un regiment,
Alles laicter vous vaches,
Et engrasses vous buefs,
Icy n'aves que faire,
Vous y seres battues !
Retires vous en France
Au secours du Barnoys,
Lequel est en suffrance
Par la puissance du Roy
D'Espaigne, notre bon prince;
Auquel demeurerons
Fidel en son service
Tant que nous viverons.
Vous huguenots rebelles,
A Dieu et votre roy
Serves ung Isabelle,
La royne des Angloys;
Laquelle sera sans faulte
Un jour et en un coup
A failly de grands forces
Pour faire le hasop !
Response pour le captaine Philippe de Luspine sur la mal basie et encores pis frogée chanson, jettée hors de Steenwick aulx trenches faict au fosse d'icelle.—Anon 1592 le 22 de Juin.
Soldats de la villette
De Steenwick, rendes vous !
Ne croyes a la teste
Qui vous abuse tous !
Dieu partout est propice
A ce que se entreprendt
Par le conte Maurice,
Goerrier tres excellent.
La reyne d'Angleterre,
Les Estats generaulx,
Et par mar et par terre
Donneront tant d'assaulx
A votre roy Phillipe
Qui se met en pourpoint,
Et ces tresors dissipe,
Pour ce qu'il n'aura point.
Jadis le duc Maurice,
Son ayeulx, devant soy
Chassa Charles d'Austrice,
Pere de votre roy.
Croyes que de un coraige
Aultant noble et vaillant,
Ce prince pieux et sage
Luy en fera aultant
Ce Roy, sans pair, de France,
Qu'appelles Bearnoys,
Fera par sa prudence
Que tout vray bon Francoys
Luy fera compaigne,
D'une unanime vol,
Pour chasser d'Italie
Le pape et l'espagnol.
Voires jusque en Espaigne,
Il ira l'assaillir;
De ia basse Allemaigne
Il aura sans faillir
Seigneurs et gentilshommes
Qui l'accompaigneront,
A quoy les grosses sommes
D'argent ne manqueront.
Quandt a ce que de Parme,
Avec son grand arroy,
A donne quelq'a l'arme
A l'ost de ce gran roy,
Il s'est en fin de compte
Retire bien blesse,
Avecq sa courte honte
Confus et harasse.
Mais avant que entreprendre
Cest exploit genereulx,
Par force il fera rendre
Ou par moyens cauteleux;
Ce de quoy par famine
En Flandres et Brabant,
Et par sa doulce mine,
Il se est faict conquerant.
Soldats ! on vous abuse,
Vous n'aures nul secours,
Par ferre ni par ruse,
En six fois trente jours;
Cependant on s'a preste
Pour d'un sault furieux,
Mander votre villette
Jusqu'au planchier des cieulx.
Thomas Burges.
1592, June 27. Warrant by Lord Burghley to the Auditors of the Exchequer, that the Queen has granted to Thomas Burges, yeoman of the Scullery, a lease in reversion of certain lands.—The Court, June 27, 1592. Note thereon by J. Herbert to the same effect.
1 p.
Enclosure :—Copy of Herbert's note above.
Lady Dor[othy] Perrott to the Dowager Lady Russell.
[1592, June.] I am sorry to put your lady or myself in mind how things have fallen out, whereof I know your ladyship is not unacquainted, I will therefore leave it to His heavenly knowledge that can best judge of all. But by these means the ruin and overthrow of us is likewise accomplished, unless by your honorable favour with my lord Treasurer from whom we have received all good hereunto that might be devised. I assure your ladyship I have no such hope or confidence in any body's power and care to do us good as in his lordship's, seeing all the causes of my father-in-law his livings pass through his lordship's hands, and in these causes her Majesty will only be advised by him. Besides, many things his lordship may do of himself by virtue of his office, and I persuade myself that your honorable soliciting for us, if so it may please you to favour us, will move and stir his honorable and forward mind already most inclinable. Mr Perrott's fortune is more hard than ever was any gentleman's, overcharged with all manner of disgraces and at the least 3,000l. in debt, besides what his father oweth, which he meaneth to pay if ever he be able, if her Majesty do it not, in whose hands all that ever we had, or hoped for, is fallen; and .new commissions going down into the country without any hope or comfort received by us from the court, where no doubt there will be suitors enough whose importunancy and presence will cause our absence to be forgotten, unless by the honorable means of the lord Treasurer we may be cared for. My father bequeathed me at his death to his lordship's love and trust, among others, which ever since his lordship hath performed .towards me with all honorable favours; and I have already received more benefit from his lordship than of any man living. . . Thus doth your many favours make me bold to trouble you, but I hope you will pardon one so unhappy as myself who honoureth you in the highest degree.
Endorsed by Burghley :—“June, 1592. La. Dor. Perrott.”
Holograph. Part of Seal. Undated. 1 p.
Spain and Scotland.
[1592, about June.] This enterprise in head is one of the greatest that ever was, since it is to conquer England, partly by a foreign force and partly by some among themselves. But since all great enterprises ought to be suddenly and resolutely prosecuted, therefore this ought to be executed at farthest in harvest next.
The reasons why.
1. All things are in such readiness, both money and men, specially men, that it will be both sumptuous and hard to entertain so great an army all this winter to come.
2. Delay of time will certainly make the Queen of England get intelligence thereof in respect that great enterprises taken in hand by divers princes remaining far sunder, and their army being one part of them in field, and the rest in readiness, will be cause of the breaking forth of the bruit thereof if time be delayed.
3. It will make the enterprise cold if delay of time be used.
4. Delaying this harvest it will not be possible to execute that purpose until the next, that corn may be on ground; whereas so long delay will constrain the army, else listed, to “skall,” if it were but only for lack of a colour for their holding together.
5. If it be delayed, the King of Spain will be able in the mean time to dip with her for his own particular, which (if it so fell out) it would dissappoint the whole enterprise.
6. The Queen of England getting by delay intelligence thereof, she would be moved to stir up in the mean time sedition in the realms whom she feared; as she has oft done for the quieting of her estate; besides the perilling of me so far as in her lay. Whereas if she were hulden occupied that way, she would rather be diligent, in keeping her own estate than in the perilling of others.
The reasons to be objected to the contrary. Antithesis.
The greatness of the enterprise ought to be a reason that it should be slowly, advisedly, and surely deliberated upon, nam sat cito si sat bene. Wherefore it cannot be goodly put in execution this harvest next. The reasons whereof are the following :
1. All things are not in readiness, in respect that this country, which it the chiefest back that the strangers must have, has been in sic disorder this time past by so often rebellions, as it will be scarce possible to get it conquered and settled betwixt this and spring next. Far less then can it be any help to conquer another in the mean time. And since I can scarce keep myself from some of their invasions, how much less can I make them invadeother countries. As also I suppose, notwithstanding that this country had invaded and conquered the other, when I can scarce with my presence contain as yet this country from rebellion, how mickel more shall they rebel in my absence, and then, instead of one, I shall have two countries to conquer, both at once.
2. Delay of time will rather keep it secret nor make open. Because so many strange princes, living so far asunder, having had this matter so long in head, it cannot be but the Queen of England hath gotten some intelligence of it, as I am surely informed she hath. Wherefore the best way were to make it secret again, to let the fruit of it (spread abroad already) once die down; and when so it is, it may be thereafter attempted of new, with fewer strange princes on the secret of it and with as mickel or more provision of money.
3. As for making the enterprisers cold in it, surely I would they were, in respect there are over many on the council of it. Wherefore I would think it easier and more honorable to do it only by myself, with some small help of men and money only from foreign parts.
In margin.—This reason answers both the 3rd and 4th.
4. As for the king of Spain's dipping in the meantime, I have answered him else by not thinking him meet to mell any farther in the enterprise, except it were by assisting with money. But, albeit he dipped with her in the meantime for his particular, it could do no harm, but rather good two ways; as well for putting her out of suspicion of any other farther meddling, because of his dipping alone, as also by holding her occupied so as she could stir up no sedition in the meantime in other countries.
5. This answers also the 5th and last objection. For if either the bruit of it were died down, or if the king of Spain held her occupied in his own particular, she could by no means harm the countries.
I submit then that, as well in respect of these reasons preceding as also in case it were enterprised and failed, what discouragement and dishonour would it be to all the enterprisers. What cumber to me and my country being next her, for the proverb is certain, the higher and suddener a man climb, the greater and sorer shall his fall be, if his purpose fail; as surely it is likely this shall do, if it be executed so suddenly as is devised; since both the Queen of England is in expectation of it, as also since the help that is looked for of the most part of the countrymen will be but scarce while their mistress lives; considering also the nature of the Englishmen, which is ready to mislike of their prince, and consequently easily moved to rebel and freetakers-in-hand, but slow to follow forth and execule, and ready to leave off from [the] time they hear their prince's proclamation, as experience has oft times given proof.
Upon all this then that I have submitted, I conclude that this enter prise cannot be well executed this summer for my unreadiness, for the Queen of England's suspecting of it and for over many strange princes dealing into it. Wherefore my opinion is that it die down, as I said before. In the mean time, I will deal with the Queen of England fair and pleasantly for my title to the crown of England after her decease, which thing if she grant to (as it is not impossible howbeit unlikely) we have then attained our design without stroke of sword. If by the contrary, then delay makes me to settle my country in the mean time; and when I like hereafter I may in a month or two (forewarning of the King of Spain) attain to our purpose, she not suspecting such thing, as now she does. Which if it were so done, it would be a far greater honour to him and me both.
Headed :—“Certain reasons which may be used to prove it meet, or unmeet, the executing of this enterprise this summer or not. 1592.”
Endorsed :—“Copy of the Scotch King's instructions to Spain which should have been sent by Powry Oge, but thereafter were concredit to Mr. George Ker, and withdrawn at his taking for safety of his Majesty's honour. 1592.”
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