Cecil Papers: December 1595, 16-25

Pages 499-509

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House, Volume 5, 1594-1595. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1894.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. All rights reserved.


December 1595, 16–25

William Williams to the Earl of Essex.
1595, Dec. 17. The loss of my best friend pushes me to beseech you that as your Lordship's refuge has been ever ready to all men distressed, to me it may not seem alone scant. Since the death of my kinsman, Sir Roger Williams, to whom can I more justly fly than to him who was his patron? Sir Roger purposed to have recommended my service to your Lordship, and by the assurance I had I altered my determination to go with Sir Francis Drake and came to the army here, and since the dissolving of it, came by Sir Roger's direction and recommendation to the Governor of Flushing, with whom I have ever since remained. Sir Thomas Morgan and Sir Mathew can inform your Lordship of me.—Flushing, 17 December, 1595.
Holograph. 1¾ pp. (20. 97.)
Minute to the Archbishop and Council of York.
1595, Dec. 18. Forasmuch as it hath pleased Almighty God to call to His mercy our late cousin of Huntingdon, President of our Council there, though for his good, yet to our great grief and loss, for the lack that both we and our realm shall have of his service; whose place there, though we cannot so readily supply as we desire and is meet, yet we think it most neccessary that in the mean time our subjects within the jurisdiction of that commission should not lack the relief of justice, but be heard and ordered as heretofore they have been by you that are of our Council there in the absence of the said President; therefore we do not only require you, but do also hereby authorise you, to continue your assemblies and sessions to hear and determine causes as heretofore you have done, until we shall authorise some other to be there as our President of that Council.
Endorsed :—“1595, 18 December.”
Draft by Burghley. 1 p. (36. 84.)
Sir Philip Butler to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 18. I have received your letters of December 16, with her Majesty's warrant enclosed for the payment of 2,000l. to Mr. William Killigrew, which remaineth unpaid out of the revenue of the Duchy of Lancaster, to the office of Treasury of her Majesty's Chamber; wherein, if I be not deceived, there is a mistaking, for that it is supposed to be for the remain of the 38th year of her Majesty's reign, whereas in truth it is for the 37th year, the last 1,000l. whereof, by the former course used in that office, is not payable before February next. Nevertheless, if her Majesty please to have it now, it is all one to me, for then I have fully satisfied all that shall be due to that office until Easter term. I have sent up my deputy to attend you, praying you the warrant may be amended in that point. And whereas you write that the money should be brought forthwith to the Court, I am an humble suitor that Mr. Killigrew may receive the same at my office in London, as heretofore, which course I would be glad to hold still, for that the matter is weighty and not without danger.—From my house, Woodhall, 18 December, 1595.
Signed. Seal. 2/3 p. (36. 85.)
Sir Edward Norreys to the Earl of Essex.
1595, Dec. 18. Would have written long ere this, but, being absent on business of his own, had nothing worth writing. Has now returned from the States, having “given them better satisfaction than they looked for.” Count Fuentes, on taking Cambray, promised the King of Spain Ostend, but now finds the enterprise more difficult, and after deferring it until the winter, now defers it until the spring. Thinks he will never attempt it; for the States are employing much money upon it and are determined to make it very strong. The Cardinal will not come until March. If “this bruit of a siege prove indeed nothing, then will I be a suitor unto your lordship to procure me her Majesty's leave, now at the latter end of all my cares, to repair into England to kiss her Majesty's hands and give some relief unto my spirits.”—Ostend, 18 Dec. 1595.
Holograph. Addressed :—Earl of [Essex] (name lost), Master of the Horse. 3 pp. (172. 113.)
The King of France, to M. d'Estrees, Lieutenant-General for the Government of Paris and the Isle of France.
1595, Dec. 18/28. Recommending the bearer, the Secretary of the Earl of Essex, for any assistance required in an affair that imports his service.—Folembrai, 28 December, 1595.
French. Signed. ½ p. (147. 117.)
The like to the Duc de Montpensier.—Folembray, 28 December, 1595.
Signed. French. ½ p. (147. 116.)
The King of France to the Earl of Essex.
[1595], Dec. 18/28. Je suis assuré que vous aves defandu ma cause contre ceus quy ont osé douter de ma foy anvers la Royne, ma tres chere seur, sur le dyre d'un charlatan mal congreu, car je juge de vous par moy mesme, et vous prouves que j'eusse tres volontyers fait la samblable pour vous au pareylle ocasyon. Quelle plus grande ynjure aussi peut on faire a un prynce quy prefere son honneur a sa vye, que de mettre sa foy au compromys sur un si foyble et debile sujet? Je m'en plains a la Royne, non que j'aye opynyon qu'elle s'an soyt emeue, mays d'avoyr andure que l'on an aye osé parler : je vous y apélle pour seconde toute-foys an qualyté de tesmoyn seulemant, car ma cause et mon espée sont trop bonnes pour avoyr besoyn de secours a fayre mouryr de honte aux quy out osé fayre comptes de telles ympostures a mes despans.—28 Decambre, a Foulambray.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“1595.” 1 p. (147. 118.)
Richard Staperr and Edward Holmden, Turkey merchants, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 19. We have been suitors unto you for her Majesty's double letters of gratulation unto the Great Turk, in respect that he hath been more than a year in his empire and hath not as yet been saluted by any her Majesty's letters, as other princes in amity with him have done, which her Majesty's ambassador at Constantinople hath earnestly written for, and we, by our experience of the fashion of those parts, do know it necessary, and more than time that her Majesty's letters were there for doubt of his displeasure, whereinto if he should enter he is not to be reclaimed, for he doth not govern by counsel as other princes do, but according to his own will : and for that we your suppliants, the merchants trading those parts, have in his dominions the greatest part of our estates, besides our servants and factors, which, if his displeasure should arise, were all lost and our people in captivity. The premises considered, we have appointed and made ready a ship to carry one of her Majesty's letters by sea, meaning to send the other letter by land; which ship shall depart at Christmas if she stay not for her Majesty's letters. In regard whereof, and that we cannot without great danger make our voyage into Turkey but in the winter, we most humbly beseech you to pardon our importunity for the despatch of the said letters, that we might send them away for doubt of the worst, and specially for that other Christians trading thither do much envy ours, and hath offered great sums heretofore to cut us off, but could never find good occasion to do it, and therefore we would be loth they should now find this occasion or upon this opportunity enforce another reason of the ease of the Turk's charges, for that the Turk hath no benefit by our trade whereby he should much regard it, in respect that he giveth above 500l. a year allowance out of his coffers to her Majesty's ambassador towards his maintenance there.—London, 19 December, 1596.
Signed. ½ p. (36. 86.)
Captain R. Morison to the Earl of Essex.
1595, Dec. 20. It is not unknown to you the manner of Sir Roger Williams his making over his company unto me. I was to pay him for having it 300l. he was indebted for arms, which was much in so poor a man's means as mine, besides my long and chargeable stayings in England for the making it over. Since, the merchants, finding Sir Roger 100l. indebted, received above his allowance, which they are to stand to the hazard of, delivering it upon excessive interest before the time, they charge it upon me as holding the same company. I must be suitor to you to be charged with no more than since the company was made over unto me is received, being a precedent never heard of, that the former captain his debts should be charged upon his successor. Besides, Sir Roger having been a captain so long could not but have her Majesty more in his debt upon old accounts. . . . . . . . Besides, Sir Roger was indebted unto me 120l. for money lent out of my purse, for which, unless by your favour, I know no means to be satisfied. I have sent the bills of his hand by my lieutenant, who can make known unto you the manner, besides testimony of his nearest friends that I made means by not two months before his death.
We understand Sir Ed. Norris will be a suitor unto you for some companies out of Flushing for the strengthening of his garrison, instead of two, upon some his discontents put out. I entreat you, unless it be to go to the wars, I may not change my garrison, being under so honourable a governor.—Flushing, this 20th of December.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (36. 87.)
Maurice Kyffin to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 20. An ode of 14 lines, requesting Cecil's assistance in his cause. Concluding
“Wisdom's dear choice, extract of noble race, Weigh and redress your suppliant's grievous case.”
Endorsed :—“20 December, 1595.”
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (36. 88.)
Captain Edmond Waynman to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 20. Prays him to remember his long and bitter imprisonment, the cause of which he will not debate, and to speak to her Highness for his liberty and maintenance till it please her to employ him.—“Your honour's poor prisoner in the Queen's Tower.”
Endorsed :—“20 December, 1595.”
Holograph. ½ p. (36. 89.)
J. Guicciardini to Essex.
1595, Dec 20/30. I received this day your Lordship's letter of the 7th of November, and thereby understood the proceeding and success of Zimenes his cause, wherein I rest nothing at all deceived, having from the beginning conceived the same opinion of it. And so much did I let the Duke understand when the matter was first propounded, and particularly all such objections as I knew would be there made against it. Nevertheless it pleased him to follow his first determination, and therein to proceed as your Lordship hath seen, and withal to command me to solicit the cause with your Lordship by my letters. Many times since, the matter has been expostulated at my hands, and my being not able to make, at any time, any direct answer unto it, hath haply caused, if not my inclination, at least my diligence to be suspected. Your Lordship's letter hath cleared all doubts, and likewise satisfied the Duke, who (howbeit the effect answer not fully his desire) doth very gratefully accept of your Lordship's travail and kind offers, which he expressly willed me to signify unto your lordship. The plush I sent unto your lordship in a chest of silks of Mr. Baptist Hicks, the mercer, to be consigned in London to Mr. Wrightington, who had orders from me to deliver it to your Lordship. As I was ready to end my letter, the party's secretary [In cipher, deciphered] by the commandment of his master delivered me a little note, whereof I send a copy enclosed. [Wanting.] I had no time to have any conference with him about it, and therefore not able to penetrate the meaning.—Florence, 30 December, 1595.
Signed. 12/3 pp. (20. 104.)
The Earl of Cumberland to the Lord Admiral and Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 21. Having now understood that the ships of Hamburgh are gone about Ireland, all saving three, and that they were laden plentifully with all manner of warlike provisions; though it grieve me I cannot do her Majesty the service I would, yet doth it the less trouble me that nobody pays for it but myself, and that it shall neither be accounted unluckiness in myself that I speed not, nor blameful, seeing her Majesty is not charged. I have needfully observed the winds since I came, and both by mine reason and by the report of a ship newly come into Dartmouth, I do conjecture that these ships cannot yet get about Scotland; so as having no other use of all my victual I have provided, and knowing that I must by going further southward of necessity meet either with those or some other ships which carry provisions for the composition of this great navy, and be able daily to send intelligence of his preparations, I have thought it my part to acquaint your lordship with my purpose, and to remember you, Sir Ro. Cecil, for a letter from the Queen authorising my doings; for though I shall be as careful of her Majesty's subjects as of my own well doing, yet if I shall lose but a man, having nothing to shew for my warrant, my danger is more than willingly I would adventure. Therefore, if her Majesty will not trouble herself with a commission, if I may but receive two lines under her hand to continue my former last commission at my going out this summer, it shall be sufficient. I will not fail to send you advertisement both often, and the truth of what can be learned from those come out of Spain. No man can look for much to be performed now (the grounds of my projects being altered), so I am sure her Majesty will think that whatsoever I am able I will do.—Portsmouth, 21 December, 1595.
Holograph. Seal. 1½ pp. (36. 90.)
John Ferne to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 21. Thanks for his letter of the 16th inst. The Earl of Huntingdon is dead since his last advertisement. “This Allyn, accused of suspicion to coin money in his house, as appeareth by the letters written thereof, by us here attendant, to you, is a very rich man (as I am informed), and therefore you may command the more heedful inquisition to be had of his estate, which else happily upon his apprehension (especially if he be faulty) will be by cunning practice concealed.”—From York, 21 December, 1595.
Signed. ½ p. (36. 91.)
Sir Richard Berkeley to Lord Burghley.
1595, Dec. 21. Has this day received his letter of the 18th inst. signifying her Majesty's pleasure for his repair to Court. Will repair thither with speed, and will wait on her Majesty within few days.—At Stoke, 21 December.
Signed. ½ p. (36. 92.)
John Danyell to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 21. I was very loth to trouble you yesterday with many words; your speeches in wishing me to follow others made me so sad since as I know not what to do. I was enlarged upon bail till Wednesday next; if I be committed again, my patent being in pawn, myself not able to defray my charges, I shall be utterly undone, for I shall be cast among the common sort of beggars, where I cannot live long. I am glad I have done her Majesty good service, but it is a hard hap, through my long continuance here a suitor, to end my life in misery; and a very bad ensample for others to do her Highness service. At the arraignment of all such as came hither about wicked practices, her Majesty's Attorney reported John Daniel to have been the first discoverer of those practices. My pension of 5s. a day, besides the loss of 800 crowns, I have forsaken. Good Sir, I beseech you upon my knees, for the love of God and in the way of charity, to have compassion of my hard estate, having a wife and 9 children, and not to forsake me in this extremity, and to be a mean to her Majesty for granting either of these my requests her Highness shall think meet.—From my chamber, this 21 December, 1595.
[P.S.]—In case her Majesty will grant the lease in reversion I will deliver you 150l., besides that you or your friends shall have the buying of it before any other. Want of apparel causeth me to stay from the Court.
Holograph. 1 p. (36. 95.)
Examination of John Gough, of Dublin, merchant.
1595, Dec. 21. Saith that he arrived in Bilbao in Biscay the 15 May last, and there sold his commodities, and thence went for Seville, and by the way went to Madrid, and there saw three Irishmen in prison. One is Captain Butler, a Munster man, the other two are Thomas Tirrell and Nicholas Luttrell, of Dublin, and are there detained, being thought by the Spaniard to be spies. There is given them by the King during their imprisonment 9d. a day apiece. At Madrid also he met with an Irish bishop that hath dwelt under the Archbishop of Burgos, the said Irish bishop being at the court of Madrid suing there, but what his suit was he knoweth not.
As for all other Irishmen that were there before his coming, he saith they all were gone thence on Easter Monday before he came, whereof one Richard Stanist, a physician, departed from Madrid upon that Easter Monday to be counsel to the Duchess of Feria in High Almaine.
He saw no Englishmen in the time he was there.
He departed from Madrid to Seville the 7 June, and there arrived within eight days, where he recovered the money that was due unto him from Bilbao. There he saw also an Irish bishop serving under the Cardinal of Seville, who hath been there these three years; but is not able to say another thing concerning him, neither can he tell his name.
In Seville he lay at the house of one Hugh Leighton, an Englishman, who hath dwelt there 20 years and married the daughter of one John Fletcher of Sheris (Xeres).
In Seville also dwells the Father Parsons the Jesuit, who buildeth a college there, and hath with him many English students. He remained but 8 days in Seville and departed for St. Lucars, and passing down the river saw 12 great ships of the King's in trimming for this army, but whither the army is bound he cannot tell.
From St. Lucars he came to Sheris, and there remained at Mr. John Fletcher's, a broker for wines, the space of three months with the Scottishmen, and at the vintage they freighted a Fleming for London; their ship being laden came to Calais, and there they understood how Sir Francis Drake was in the Canaries by their host, one Laurence Semayne, a Dutchman.
Signed. 1⅓ pp. (36. 96.)
Matthew Hutton, Archbishop of York, to Lord Burghley.
1595, Dec. 21. Give me leave to trouble you sometimes with my private letters, albeit I know you are fraught with the affairs of this kingdom; audax benevolentia non solet reprehendi.
The state of this Council consisteth especially of a Lord President and four learned lawyers, with the secretary. The lawyers have divided themselves, by the consent of the Lord President, to wait at York every one his quarter, with the secretary, who doth always attend. At the four sittings they are all at York, which sittings continue commonly three weeks a sitting. Mr. Edward Stanhope doth attend this quarter from Christmas until the Annunciation, and now dwelleth, himself, his wife and family, and keepeth house in the Minster garth at York; the secretary lying near unto him. These two, with help of them that be near York, can dispatch all ordinary matters of the Council (as hath been accustomed) until the next sitting, which beginneth the first Monday in Lent; before which time her Majesty may resolve, &c., for without a President or Vice-president no decree passeth. My Lord Darcy, a very honest and honourable gentleman, hath very uprightly supplied the place of late years in the absence of the Lord President. This country, albeit most willing to obey whomsoever her Majesty shall appoint, yet wisheth that one may be sent hither ex antiqua nobilitate. For such one, in my opinion, will be most able to serve her Majesty and content the people, especially at this time when it is most requisite that the Lord President should be also Lieutenant.—From Bishopthorpe, 21 December, 1595.
Signed. Seal. 1 p. (36. 97.)
King's Lynn.
1595, Dec. 21. Brief of the charges laid out by the Mayor and Burgesses of Kings Lynn for the setting forth of the “Expedition” for the Queen's service, by order from the Council of 12 Dec. 1595.
1 p. (141. 168.)
The Council at York to Lord Burghley.
1595, Dec. 22. According to your letters dated the 17th inst., we have made known to the Earl of Huntingdon his secretaries your pleasure to understand by them what matters his lordship had collected together to be certified up of the state of the Middle Marches in his last painful journey thither; and both his secretaries do answer that none of those affairs did come to their hands, neither were they acquainted with anything done by his lordship in that journey touching the state of those marches. Wherefore we think they were committed by himself to his private casket, which we locked in his closet, and whereof the lord Archbishop hath the keys. Concerning the knowledge of Mr. Ferne, who attended his lordship in that journey, he doth now write privately to you of those matters, as you gave him on charge. As to what parts of our commission are suspended by the said Earl's death, and what might be needful to be ordered by her Majesty before she shall appoint a President, the general commission (whereby principally the state of this Council is established, for matters of government and judicial acts of the Court) is directed to any four, whereof two must be of the Quorum, of the which Quorum there are now only living the two Justices of Assize, Humphrey Purefly, Edward Stanhope, William Cardinal, John Gibson and Robert Beale. By which commission we do find that we, so authorised, may deal in causes for the quiet government of the country, and send forth process for the expediting of causes towards the hearing; but for the holding of any sittings, whatsoever the commission doth warrant, yet upon due consideration of the instructions in Articles 22 and 30, we do think that neither the Court can be full nor we adjourn or appoint any sittings without a President, Vice-President, or special commission from her Majesty. The next sitting is adjourned by his lordship to the first day of March being the first Monday of Lent; and we find that after the death of three several Presidents, Sir Thomas Sargrave, one of the learned council attendant, was the chief man that held these sittings during those vacancies, with the rest of the council attendant; but by what special warrant we do not find by record or testimony, being now about 28 years since the Earl of Sussex entered.—At York, this 22nd December, 1595.
Signed. Seal. 1⅓ pp. (36. 98.)
Religion in Normandy.
1595, Dec. 23./1596, Jan. 2. Mardy. A l'assemble generalle des estats de la province de Normandy tenus à Rouen fut propose, tant par celuy qui fesoit la responce aux demandes du Roy que par la conclusion du cayer des dicts estats, qu'il ni auroit en la dicte province de Normandy qu'une seulle religion Catholicque Apostolicque et Romaine, et que l'heresie et oppignon, autrement dicte la Religion pretendue Reformee des Calvinistes, soit abollie et chassée hors de la dicte province. Et suplye au Duc de Monpensier, representant la personne du Roy, comme gouverneur en la dicte province, que le dicte article et demande fut acordee en la dicte province; et suplye le dict Duc qu'il en ladvertir le Roy et faire tant envers luy que la dicte demande et article fut per luy acordee aux estats de la dicte province, tellement qu'ilz ne font que atendre la responce du Roy pour cest effet.
Note at foot.—“The propounder of this in Parliament was one Pennet, a canon of Notre Dame in Roan.”
½ p. (37. 34.)
Guicciardini to the Earl of Essex.
1595, Dec. 23./1596, Jan. 2. Ever since my last letter written to your lordship about a fortnight ago, I have, in respect of the causes therein contained, kept myself, by the Duke's commandment, out of sight in a retired place; which accident hath kept me from the speech of his Highness. Howbeit his secretary hath been with me, to whom I delivered my letters, and performed such general compliments as I thought convenient, reserving the rest until I may have opportunity to do them to himself. I have received at this instant from thence these advertisements.
The Turks' galleys' return to Constantinople hath greatly rejoiced the ministers of Spain, and especially the prince Doria, who against a hundred and ten galleys of the Turks had seventy in all, whereof he could scarcely choose forty good. It is thought that if they had attempted anything in Sicilia, they might, besides the spoil, have gotten some port; which they may at any time yet safely do, whensoever they shall attempt it, the country is so unfurnished both of men and weapons, their militia consisting only of 9000 foot and 1600 horse, all unexpert soldiers. The Pope sendeth into Hungary his nephew with 10,000 foot, whereof 4000 Italians, the rest Wallons, besides 1000 horse of Wallons paid by him; so that this war of Hungary giveth of all other least disturbance to Spain, who maketh rather his benefit thereof, the Turk being so engaged there as he cannot attend him, which otherwise he would do if he had peace with Hungary.
The King of Spain, though he have lost by this last preparation by tempest thirty-six ships, 3000 foot and 300,000 crowns, yet doth he still threaten, and makes new provision for another invasion.—2 January, 1596.
Endorsed :—“Guicciardini's letters to the Earl of Essex deciphered by his Lordship.”
Cipher. Seal. 1¼ pp. (37. 35.)
Rendering of the foregoing letter in Essex's handwriting. (37. 36.)
[John Whitgift,] Archbishop of Canterbury, to the Lord Keeper and Lord Buckhurst.
1595, Dec. 24. Sends, according to their request, such examinations in the Earl of Hertford's cause as are in his custody, viz., of the Earl himself, of Hugh George, John Theaker, Edward Stanhop, esquire, Edward Stanhop, Dr. of the Law, Thomas and Richard Wheeler, Roland Towers, Peter Tethrington, Henry Ironmonger, Silvester Hulett, John Drake, and Thomas Redman.—From Lambeth, 24 December, 1595.
Signed. Seal. ⅓ p. (36. 99.)
Sir Robert Cecil to the Lord Keeper and Lord Buckhurst.
1595, Dec. 24. Her Majesty hearing that Sir Thomas Wilks was not well, commanded me to signify unto you that if you have not already sent Mr. Wade or some other to the Earl, you may forbear till the holidays be passed.—From the Court this 24th December, 1595.
Holograph. Seal. ⅓ p. (36. 100.)
Sir Robert Sydney to the Earl of Essex.
1595, Dec. 25. Praying that by his favour Captain Morton, one of the captains of the garrison, may recover a debt due unto him by Sir Roger Williams.—Flushing, 25 of Dec. 1595.
Holograph. 2/3 p. (20. 101.)
John Ferne to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 25. Whereas you have vouchsafed to give me understanding of a most false accusation by some of my Lord President his servants, namely, being requested five or six days before my letters of the 12th of this month, addressed to you of that matter, to send up advertisement by post of his lordship's sickness, and being eftesones demanded, four days after, if I had done so, that I should answer I had forgotten, whereunto you require my answer; I do with a good conscience and even upon my soul deny, that any such request was made so long before my letters to you, or any such so careless and gross an answer given by me. For until the 11th of the same month, being Thursday, though his Lordship had been sickly and kept his chamber, no danger or extremity in the sickness [was] suspected, either by Mr. Cardinal, one of this Council, then attendant here, or by myself; but rather, such as his Lordship had in October last, being then sickly ten days together. And this both we and others did judge because it was given out by his lordship and his servants, the Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday before, that he would take his journey towards London the Thursday following, and had indeed prepared all things for that purpose. I had been admitted to his lordship's presence but once before that Thursday, and Mr. Cardinal as seldom, but on the same Thursday, the 11th inst., we were admitted again into his chamber. Finding him unfit for such a journey, as we thought, we dissuaded him from that attempt, and that night at 9 of the clock one Mr. Nevell, his servant, told me it were good I did write and send up by post, that his sickness might be imparted to the Countess of Huntingdon. Next day, understanding his lordship to decline greatly, I resolved to adventure the sending of a packet by post to you, without his lordship's warrant, and yet his lordship had expressly commanded none to write, lest my lady being then sickly (as he was advertised) should hear thereof; for it is an offence to the Lord President here, being present, if the Secretary or any of his Council do send any post without his warrant or hand to the packet, and such an attempt never put in practice here by any my predecessors : because the President reserveth the pre-eminence of advertisements to himself. So no danger or necessity being manifest to me till December 12, I durst not send any post without his privity and warrant, for by that presumption I might have incurred his displeasure. I most humbly pray I may be cleared of this most false imputation, shifted from themselves and most maliciously laid upon me by those that, in respect of their better knowledge of his lordship's estate, might have taken a fitter course in those affairs.—At York, 25 December, 1595.
Signed. Seal. 1⅓ pp. (36. 104.)
John Ferne to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 25. I am so greatly abused by this false information (in not advertising my lord [of Huntingdon] his sickness in convenient time) that my sorrow is now doubled; first, by loss of so good a Lord President; secondly, that I should be reputed the only man careless of his good or the duty of my service here. My answer to this false accusation I have sent enclosed to be shewed her Majesty if you think so convenable; for proof whereof I refer myself to the reports of Mr. Stanhope and Mr. Cardinal, if this answer worketh not satisfaction.
I told Mr. Stanhope how I was abused; he hath written to Mr. John Stanhope that I am greatly wronged. First, by reason my lord his sickness was not thought perilous or worthy advertisement till two days before his death, and that his preparation was to go presently to London; and secondly, that no packet may be sent by post without the President his warrant, and therefore till necessity urged I could not without offence to his place presume to send a packet by my own warrant. His lordship's servants knew best his estate, and it became them to have ridden post to my lady if they knew any such cause; which was concealed from us of the Council [of York] till Thursday evening. Mr. Cardinal and I found such careless regard in his attendants in the end, that we having written a letter to a physician, it lay unsent two days after. Their excuse was that my lord's pleasure was to neglect it; and indeed his lordship sought (as it now seemeth) to conceal and extenuate his grief, labouring merely of melancholy and thought by conceit taken of the weakness of the Middle Marches. Further, my Lord Keeper wrote to me that the Countess's servants did excuse themselves in that I would not help them to passage for their letters by post, which is utterly false; and if they had requested it, yet so long as his lordship was not suspected to be in danger, I might not sign any warrant for the post, and so I intend to advertise his lordship. I cannot conjecture how this false information should be raised against me unless by the practice of one Nevell, (one of the examiners in this court, and servant to my late Lord President, that brought up the advertisement of his death), peradventure incited by malice; for he practiseth to obtain his place under the great seal by a great lord's favour in the Court (as it is said). And because that were to the hurt of justice, and a wrong to Mr. Beale and me, I have written to Mr. Beale to stop his proceedings; and if by interception he understandeth my endeavours against him, perhaps malice worketh this. I beseech your favour for the satisfying of her Majesty to whom I am most unjustly accused, as in the end upon proof will plainly appear.—At York, this 25th of December, 1595.
Endorsed :—“Mr. Ferne's private letter to my master.”
Signed. 2 pp. (36. 101.)
Sir Horatio Palavicino to Sir Robert Cecil.
1595, Dec. 25. Has not had leisure to write sooner, but has despatched “l'amico” according to Cecil's directions, and sends his writings. He himself is departed and perhaps near the other coast. From Zealand they write that they have letters from Lisbon and Seville, but no news of any extraordinary provision of armada. The letters are of 19 Nov.—From my house, 25 Dec. 1595.
Italian. Holograph. ½ p. (172. 116.)