Cecil Papers: December 1596, 1-15

Pages 499-527

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 6, 1596. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1895.

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December 1596, 1–15

Charles, Lord Mountjoye to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 1. “Sir, the letter it pleased you to send me to deliver unto my l. of Essex, being assured of his stay, I do return you again.”—Portsmouth, 1 Dec.
Endorsed :—1596.
Holograph. 1 p. (46. 86.)
Sir Robert Sydney to [the Earl of Essex].
1596, Dec. 1. Wrote in his last of the shipwreck of the Spaniards upon Cape Finisterre. News from Seville of 20 Nov., new style, “which after our reckoning is the 10th,” is that 15 galleons were lost, of which neither cat nor dog did escape. The rest of the army is dispersed and not like to do hurt this year. The King has licensed all persons to trade into Spain as before, which is thought to be a device to bring shipping into his havens, of which he may serve his turn. “The protesting of the Cardinal's bills of exchange doth very much trouble all the Italian merchants, and all other, as well at Antwerp as at Amsterdam and Middelborough, which have any dealings with them. The colour, or at least one of them, which the King took to suffer the said protest, was that Ambrosio Spinola, a banker of Antwerp, who had made the party with the King of Spain for the 2500 thousand ducats, failed at his day of the payment at Lisbon of 400 thousand, the want whereof had kept the army from going forth a month longer than was determined. The Cardinal upon the news of it (I think to give some time for the passing over of choler) gave liberty that for 12 days nobody that had lent any part of the said sum should be demanded payment.” There are other news from Spain, that the States there are willing that the money they granted for the war of England should be so employed, or else used for defence of their own coasts, but refuse to contribute any longer to the war of Flanders.
“In these parts hath been discovered, which if it had taken place would have put the whole country in confusion. The lord of Luggy, the Scot of whom and his being in this island in my former letters I wrote unto your Lordship, lying at Camphire, fell into acquaintance with a captain of the regiment of Zealand named Roley and, thinking him fit for his purpose, practised with him to deliver the tower which commandeth the haven (for Roley's company lieth in the town) unto the enemy. Roley bare him in hand he would, and should have had 10,000 ducats in hand and 40,000 more when the matter had been performed, but, it seemed, he could not dissemble well (for so some of the States told me) so as he touched none of the money; but Luggye is taken, so as the States do determine to draw forth the truth either by fair or foul means, for he yet denies all notwithstanding that they have the writings of the agreement signed with his own hand, and they have sent to examine him straitly, and the hangman to bring him to the rack. I have desired of the States that he may be examined of all things that may concern her Majesty or her dominions, and consequently of this town of Flushing; which they have promised shall be done, and I will see it performed accordingly. If there be anything your Lordship will have particularly enquired of, if it please your Lordship to let me know it, I will enquire it of them. The further particularities of this matter I will certify your Lordship of as soon as I have them myself; for as yet the examinations have not been brought in, for it is but two days since he was made prisoner. It is thought here that the keeping of the ships of Dunkirk, which I heretofore wrote to your Lordship of, was to have seconded this enterprise; and I think they would have sought to have brought the whole Spanish fleet thither. I heard this day that the Cardinal should be looked for at Bridges, and at Sluce there should be great troops of men, from whence they were to make the enterprise. Calewart, the agent of the States, sent them word the other day that the Marquis of Warembone, who is prisoner in France, should say to one, in confidence, that he thought that the forces which were in Flanders were not intended for Ostend, but for an enterprise upon this town which had been long in hand. Other particularities he wrote not : and the States of Zealand (I mean the Council of Zealand which are continually resident at Middelborough) sent me presently an abstract of the said advertisement. Whereupon I took occasion to go to Middelborough unto them; where I dealt very earnestly with them, both for the restraining of the free passage which they grant through this town, as also for the fortifications of it, both which points they have desired me to deliver unto them in writing.” Will do so and send you a copy. The fortifications they will see to, but other provisions for resistance must come from England; though upon a necessity they would not leave us unprovided, and when they resolve to make defence no State in the world is less sparing than they. I have written also to Count Moris; but until spring I think nothing will be done. I will write shortly to the Queen the particular needs of the town and beg your favour therein.—Flushing, 1 Dec. 1596.
P.S.—“I understand from Middelborough that upon sight of the rack the Scot confesseth all, and hath taken upon him this night to set down in writing all what he knoweth. It seemeth he was set on unto it by one Do. Hamilton and certain other Jesuits.”
Copy. 2 pp. (46. 87.)
Sir Anthony Ashley to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 1. I beg you to be a mean for the delivery of my plate which Mr. Middleton, by your warrant, took out of my house. “All hath been mine these six or seven years at the least, and some of it more than ten years since. There is not amongst it above x l. or x x mks. worth of broken plate cast in unclean places at Cales.” Needs it both in his house and to raise money. Begs also to be reconciled to the Queen's good opinion.—From my poor house in Holborn, 1 Dec. 1596.
Signed. 1 p. (46. 88.)
Francesco Alvares to Captain Jeremy Juanes.
1596, Dec. 11. I wrote to you by two Irish ships which were here and took away fourteen of the Englishmen who were taken at Lisbon. I showed them every kindness, but it was ill requited, for, impoverished by the trouble and lawsuits I have had for you, I was at Calis when you and all that armada came, and my friend Captain William too. I made every enquiry for you, but could find no one to defend my house from pillage, or prevent Catalina, your daughter, and her sisters and mother being taken from me; whilst you were pillaging the land and making banquets and feasting harlots, forgetful of your daughter and of him who had reared her with so much pain. “Mas no al que maravillar que lo haga ansi quien tan malos pasos trae como V. M. Dios le alumbre su alma y entendimiento.” Has lost everything. If you write let the letter come “al Puerto en la calle Delpo suelo en frente de la iglezia de la Madre de Dios,” or to Calis whence it will be sent to me. Suggests some things (a mantle and the like) which he may send to his daughter, Catalina Borbon, and which should be sent by Irish ships or through Flanders or France. Among the captives carried from hence he might find means to negociate.
Among the captives carried from Calis are eight priests whose church is too poor to ransom them. Asks him to get them sent back.—Cadis, 11 Dec. 1596.
Spanish, Holograph, 3 pp., Addressed :—“A Geronimo Juañes capitan ingles de uno de los navios del armada de Ingalaterra, sobrino de Juano Flecher ingles vezino de Xeres en Bristol o en Londres; y en su ausençia se le de a Mastre Paulo Aleman en Bristol para que se la enbie.”
(47. 18.)
Arthur Warwicke to Mr. Percival.
1596, Dec. 1. Sends the “drawen work and verses” he promised. Thanks him for his kindness and offers services.—Winton, Dec. 1.
On the next page are Latin verses (46 lines).
Endorsed :—“1 Dec., 1596. Warwick with Mr. Hoskin's verses.”
2 pp. (204. 43.)
Alderman Henry Billingsley and Richard Saltonstall to Lord Burghley.
1596, Dec. 2. In answer to his letter of the 1st, it will be difficult to find the full value of what the five merchants undernamed trade for, but from the customs books it appears that they have shipped since May last above 1,300 cloths, and the two Freemans have since Michaelmas brought in over 1,300 qrs. of corn. It seems they are to supply certain wheat for the Queen's service, and demand an imprest of 5,000l. If the bargain were with merchants they could raise so much upon their joint bond.—London, 2 Dec., 1596.
ii. Names above referred to : John Jolles, Wm. Freeman, Raphe Freeman, Simon Furier, Wm. Doggett.
1 p. (46. 89.)
Sir Robert Sydney to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec 2. His delay in answering Essex's last letter concerning the Ramekins, and his lordship's words to Rol. Whyte about it, is due to a report that Essex had gone to view the south coast of England. Explains at great length his refusal to allow Sir Thos. Baskervyle to transfer the government of the Ramekyns to his brother Nicholas Baskervyle. The Ramekyns is not a separate government, but is under the government of Flushing, and the writer kept Sir Thomas' company in it as a suitable place in which to keep a company. Hears that Sir Thomas, upon his going to France, has sold his company to his brother for 500l., a very high price to pay for a company of 250 men. As to the 80l. which Sir Thomas paid to Mr. Ernigton for beds for the soldiers, he may either have the beds back or the money. Neither the writer nor the States know of any other expenditure made or needed at the Ramekyns.
Holograph. 5 pp. (46. 90.)
Sir Robert Sydney to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 2. The journey which I understand you have taken to view the south coasts makes me only send the copy of my letter to my lord Treasurer. “Your Lordship in it shall see a fair scape we made here at Camfire. If there be anything that you will particulary have Luggy examined of, if it please you to make me know it, I will cause it to be done.” News of the shipwreck of the Spanish fleet is confirmed, and it is thought that if those ships that be left should be met withal, all Spain would be open to the spoil. Begs leave to come over for two months, as there is now no danger out of Spain, and the discovery of this practice upon Camfire, which was to have been executed from the Zass of Gaunt, “will make the States lay ships of war before all the places where any quantity of boats can come forth, which with one labour will prevent any purpose upon this town also.” The sooner he comes over the better, as he should be back in spring to set forward the fortifications, for which he hopes to take order before going over. “But if I may not have leave, I beseech your Lordship to send me freely your opinion what I am to trust unto at the Court; for if nothing will go forwards there then must I seek to make the best of this place.” Asks credence for Rol. White. Has no news but what he wrote to the lord Treasurer. “Upon the resignation of Sir Art. Savage I have bestowed the company upon Captain Fleming. I beseech your Lordship that he may ever have your favour as long as he shall deserve it.”—Flushing, 2 Dec., '96.
Holograph. 2 pp. (46. 93.)
George Gilpin to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 2. Want of news and the understanding that Essex had weightier business have made him delay writing, and he only writes now because Mons. Regemorter has asked him to convey letters of importance. As Regemorter was believed to be entrusted with some great matter, divers courtiers about his Excellency, and others, have asked the writer's advice, who, having no instructions, has only left them in their opinion that Essex was minded “to attempt great matters against the enemy. The States' deputies have returned, and their entertainment and favour received there very well liked, though they could have wished an answer more to their contentment. Her Majesty's purpose to send over again (which they imagine will be to insist upon former demands) doth very much trouble them, knowing their present state such as will not suffer any great charge unless they should lessen it another way; and that would not be without danger of further inconveniences, which by all means must be sought to be avoided; and do not see any likelihood that they will alter former resolutions, yet if they would come to a certain sum and time of payment, without limitation of her Majesty's life or person, methinks it could not harm them greatly and might the sooner yield her Majesty's contentment, and move others with more reason to further it. The issue time must discover.” There was hot news of the King of Spain's death and his son's poisoning, but it wanes again and is thought to have arisen by the Cardinal's bills of exchange for a large sum “being returned out of Spain with protest, the cause whereof is not yet certainly known, but hath made a foul stir in Andwarpe amongst the merchants, and will crack his credit shrewdly and undo many negociants.” The loss of galleons about the North cape is still hoped in as there is nothing to the contrary. By way of France, it seems the navy was intended for Ireland “in hope to be there received and seconded.” It is thought that the best way to overthrow the King of Spain is to go towards him with a force, and as for the Cardinal, the King of France will find him work, nor do we hear that he makes any preparation for sea, except of small boats, for an attempt upon Camphyre, “where a certain Scot, called the lord Loggi, is taken prisoner, and discovered to have been employed and a practiser how to take that town, whereabouts he had been plotting these 2 or 3 months, and breaking at last with the captain that lay there in garrison, whom he sought and hoped to win with promises, all is come forth and he like to pay for it dearly. The horsemen of Breda, having been abroad so seek adventure, took sundry prisoners, and amongst them an Irishman who saith his name is George Barnal, lieutenant to one Captain Clermont (?), but others confess him to be a captain having charge of two companies. His Excellency hath promised me he shall be examined thoroughly, and not released without my knowledge.”—The Haeghe, 2 Dec. 1596.
Seal. Holograph. 3 pp. (46. 94.)
Officers of the Port of Ipswich to the Lord Treasurer.
1596, Dec. 2. Have received his letter of 27 Nov., directing that the moiety of the goods growing to the searcher is not to be sold or disposed of, but that growing to the Queen is to be delivered to Mr. Queries and Mr. Dorrell. Also another letter of 29 Nov. directing them to permit one of the merchants to look to the butter and cheese; but as this would be a possession to them they have refused. The searcher will presently repair to his Lordship with further evidence. “It will be in vain for any searcher to prosecute any concealment of entries from port to port, and we, the other officers, being both bound and sworn to do her Majestry true service, must be content to accept of such entries as the merchants shall prefer whatsoever, without contradiction, and our poor searcher, not able to wage law with them, if they be admitted to have possession of the goods.”—Ipswich, 2 Dec. 1596. Signed :—Edm. Jenney, collector, He. Groldingham, comptroller, A. Warlich, surveyor, and Benjamin Clere, searcher.
Seal. 1 p. (46. 96.)
The Dean and Chapter of Westminster to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 2. Enclosing a paper of reasons against granting a lease of Godmanchester rectory to Mrs. Hide, in whose favour the Queen lately wrote.—College of Westminster, 2 Dec. 1596. Signed :—Gabriel Goodman : Ric. Bancrofte : Thomas Ranis : Edwarde Bulkley : Richard Wood : Thomas Monfords : Percival Wikary : Ed. Grante : Rich. Webster.
1 p.
“General reasons, touching the state of the whole college, why the Dean and Chapter of Westminster may not well yield to the grant of a lease in reversion of the rectory impropriate of Godmanchester to Mrs. Hide.
“The great charge of redeeming a lease for the provision of corn toward the hospitality of the college, and the building of a school for her Majesty's scholars at Chesweeke in time of infection, costing us above 800l., have greatly impaired the state of the college.
“The ordinany allowances allotted in the beginning of her Majesty's reigh to the singing men in the choir, scholars and servants, being unsufficient to maintain them, we have been enforced to increase to the value of 250l. by the year, and yet there must be a new supply presently to the choir, or else we shall be destitute of fit and able singing men.
“The continual and necessary repairing of the fabric of the church and other of the college houses is very chargeable, so that some years there is spent upon them 200l. at the least.
“The maintenance of daily hospitality is grown to be so great as without further present provision we cannot be well able to continue it.”
To supply these charges, their best things being leased before the Queen's reign for 99 years, when smaller leases expire they turn them, not to their own benefit, as in other churches, but to the provision of the college. Also the lord Treasurer gives them, out of certain grounds let to them, 20l. yearly.
Particular reasons concerning this lease : The present farmer of the rectory, the only good thing like in our times to come to our hands, and yet there are 14 years of his lease to run, has long laboured to have his lease renewed for 21 years, offering “present provision.” Do not presume to allege that, by statute, churches and colleges are forbidden to let in reversion until the old lease be within the third year of expiration. Quote one of the statutes of the College to which they are all sworn, “penned by Mr. Dr. Byll in the year of the new erection of this her Majesty's collegiate church, anno 1560,” to the same effect.
2 pp. (46. 97.)
P. de Regemortes to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 2/12. Les occurrences a ceste heure ne me donnent argument d'escrire amplement. Car par les nouvelles de la perte d'une grande partie de la flotte, et des bruits de la mort du Roy, nous ostent la chaleur des alarmes par mer. Pleut a Dieu, si les affaires sont tels, qu'on pourroit user de la bonne occasion, et parformer ce que dernierement a este essaye, devant que l'ennemy auroit mis ordre en son faict. Si je puis entendre l'intention de V. Excell., je m'employeray avec toute debvoir possible afin qu'icelle soit secondee par deca. Touschant le point des vivres et amunitions, lequel V. Excell, m'avoit donne en charge, je trouve qu'il ny aura difficulte : moyennant quelles soyent achetees : et si on viendroit jusques la, ce point debvroit estre esclarcy, ains j'estime et j'espere que ce sera vostre tour de les aller visiter a melieures marques.—La Have, 12 Dec. 1596.
Endorsed :—“Sr P. Regemōtes.”
Holograph. 1 p. (174. 51.)
Nathan Butler.
1596, Dec. 2. Petition to Lord Burghley, for a lease of part of the ground called Patrick's garden, part of the possessions of the late Abbey of Graces, near the Tower of London, upon which he has built a tenement.—Undated.
Certificate by William Necton, deputy supervisor, as to the case, and recommending the grant upon a rent.—2 Decr. 1596.
2 pp. (634.)
Sir Ferdinando Gorges to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 4. “This last day arrived a Breton boat with some English merchants which left Morles the 2nd inst., where it was reported that, of the Spanish fleet, 38 sail were cast away in Arcaxon Bay, in Biscay, and 30 sail upon the Sems. Encloses the examination of one of the merchants, but none of them can tell how the news was brought to Morles. Captains Croftes and Harper have as yet no wind to depart. Upon Cecil's letter the Fleming is contented, and has unladen part of his wheat upon condition of being paid his freight for the amount delivered. This seems reasonable, as the Duke is only bound to pay for what he receives, and they desire Cecil's letter to James Bagge, or his servant Thomas Glanvile, who receives the corn, to pay the master his freight. Of late here arrived a bark of Hampton which about xxxtie days past met with xiij sail of Hamburgers going in to Lisborne laden with corn, of which she took one of about iijc. tons. The hulk that is here hath charter parties in Dutch, Italian and Spanish. That in Spanish we have seen; whereby the master is bound to go with his lading directly for Leghorne, and not to enter in to any other port, but keep the sea unless upon very extreme occasions; but with these conditions that if, at his coming to Leghorne, his corn by long lying at the sea, or other mishaps, be not such as is meet to be received, the Duke may leave the same, and not pay him any freight or other duties. Further, if the master, by force of weather, or other ways, should enter into any other port and there unlade his corn, that then he is to seek his freight of such as shall receive the same and the Duke to be freed thereof; without any further condition, to bind the master to make certificate or use any other diligence to prove by what means he was enforced to come in to any such port. So that the master (if he please) may as well go for Lisborne as the rest, and not thereby incur any danger at all against the Duke of Tuscan.”—Plymouth, 4 Dec., 1596.
Worded as if from more than one person.
Signed. Seal. 1 p. (46. 99.)
T. Lord Buckhurst to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 4. Hears that the deputies of the States have moved for the grant of certain demi culverins. Is loth to oppose them, but the Queen is in this kind of suit much abused, “and the patentees, whose whole interest is now in Mr. Nevel and my son, being to suffer great prejudice thereby, I do propose to move her Majesty therein for the stay of the grant thereof.” Ordnance formerly so granted for the use of the States and of Count Moris has been openly sold; and to prove this the patentees have bought some of it, who have beyond sea over 250 tons of ordnance, “and cannot sell it, for so long as they may buy great pieces they will not buy the smaller.” Asks him, if such a bill comes up to be signed, to stay it till the writer has spoken with the Queen.—4 Dec. 1596.
Endorsed :—“Concerning the artillery granted to the States.”
Holograph. 1 p. (46. 100.)
Dr. Thomas Preston, Master of Trinity Hall, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 4. As his former letters reach not to the contentation of her Majesty and a sufficienter answer is required to divert indignation from himself, he begs but for an adjournment of time, whereby he may feel the disposition of the other fellows in the matter of Clement Corbett, and arrive at a more advised resolution.—Trinity Hall, 4 December, 1596.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (136. 48.)
M. Noel de Caron to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 4. Encloses a petition from a number of traders and others of the towns of Holland, who are interested in the three ships which were met at Cape Finisterre. It is addressed to the Privy Council, but it seems to him that it concerns rather Essex and the High Admiral. Prays for their influence with the Council to settle the matter. The trouble which the States have by the continual complaints made by the above persons, causes them to write daily letters to him. Hopes Essex will take the matter to heart, as it is of great importance, and merits a settlement to Essex's honour. He has said the same to the High Admiral. “Car etant vos Excellences des plus grands seigneurs d'Angleterre, je m'assure qu'ils ne voudraient jamais endurer que leur nom (pour quelque argent) qui comme je suis aussi certain ne leur touche en particulier aucunement, mais aurait ete (comme j'entends) employe pour le service de sa Majeste, serait mise par tout le peuple de cet Etat en question.”—Londres, 4 Dec. 1596.
French. 2 pp. (174. 43.)
Henry Sadleir to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 5. Has received letters from the Privy Council blaming him that the forces sent out of this county to the Isle of Wight, were “unhable persons, ill armed and apparelled, and long a coming,” as Lord Hunsdon had reported. Upon 4 Nov., late in the evening, received, at the same time, a letter from the Queen, dated 2 Nov., and another from the Privy Council, dated 31 Oct., commanding him to send 450 men out of the trained bands of this county into the Isle of Wight. Sat up most of that night writing out copies of these letters, which on the morrow, with a letter of his own (copy enclosed), he sent to the four colonels of trained bands, viz. Sir Henry Knyvett, Sir James Mervyn, Sir Thomas Wroughton, and Mr. Edward Penruddock, requiring them to meet him the next Monday at Sarum. On that day came only Mr. Penruddock's men, and next day Mervyn's and on Wednesday Knyvett's,—and considering the extremity of the weather they could hardly come sooner. Of these bands sent off 340 men on the 10th. and 11th. Nov. (as appears by his indentures with the captains that led them), “to Southampton wards, for it was not then possible to pass to Christchurch for waters.” The rest, whom he expected to make up 450, Sir Thomas Wroughton being in London and having left no sufficient lieutenant, went confusedly the nearest way to Southampton. Did not see these, but the men that went out of Sarum were able bodied and well equipped. “By reason of the great abundance of rain that happened then the waters were so risen that no man could pass either on horse or foot, which caused them to stay long by the way before they could get to Hampton, and when they came thither there were no captains to receive them, which was another let.”—Hungerford Lodge, 5 Dec. 1596.
Holograph. 2 pp.
Enclosed in the above :
Copy of his letter to Sir Henry Knyvet forwarding copies of the Queen's and Council's letters, telling him that the best way to execute them seems to be to take 100 men out of each regiment and 50 out of the city of Sarum, and asking him to have 150 men at Sarum on Monday morning next.—5 Nov., 1596.
Copy in Sadleir's hand, 1 p. (46. 101.)
The Queen to Lord Burghley, High Treasurer.
1596, Dec. 5. Understands that the citizens of London and other corporate towns are willing to provide wheat and rye out of foreign parts, if they may do so free of custom or other duty; and, “considering the great comfort that may hereby come to our people in this time of want and dearth,” commands him to direct the officers of the ports to permit this, and to certify what corn shall by these means be brought into the realm monthly. This discharge of custom to date from 25 Oct. last, to continue during the Queen's pleasure.—5 Dec., 39 Eliz.
Sign Manual. Privy signet. 1 p. (46. 103.)
G. Lord Hunsdon to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 5. The Queen's letters commanding him to return the 900 soldiers that were here in garrison, with their armour, to the places whence they were levied, though dated 28 Nov., were not delivered by the pursuivant who brought them till 1 Dec. at night. Next day, called the colonel and captains and took order for the bands to be delivered over to Hampton, to be there received by indenture; and wrote, by the same pursuivant, to the lords lieutenants of Hampshire and Mr. Henry Sadler, late high sheriff of Wiltshire, to appoint such as had delivered the troops out of their several shires to meet the colonel and his captains at Hampton the Monday following, which seemed the shortest time that could be appointed, as it was then uncertain when the paymaster would be here to pay them and discharge their victuals. Omits to write “how great an appalment” it is to the island to be thus left destitute, considering the continued reports of Spanish preparations. Highly commends the conduct of the colonel, Sir Samuel Bagnall, and the captains while here, and hopes that it will win them preferment in the next employments.—Carisbrook Castle, 5 Dec. 1596.
Signed. 1 p. (46. 104.)
Sir Robert Sydney to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 5. Encloses Loggy's confession “which he voluntarily offered to make upon sight of the torture.” Knows not whether he would say more “if well put to it,” but hitherto this is all. Has spoken to the Council of Zealand that he be neither executed nor discharged until the Queen's further pleasure be known. Has written the like to his excellency. “They here would make quick work with him to take away all intercession for him.” The loss of the Spanish ships is generally believed, but some think it a report spread by the King of Spain to make them careless. “Yesterday came in hither a ship of war of this country who met at sea a fleet of Hollanders newly discharged out of Spain; whereupon some do ground judgement that the King of Spain doth not for the present intend anything, since he dismisseth part of his forces; others, contrariwise, think that these ships were not of those which were arrested for the fleet but others which went since with corn into Spain.” Sees no extraordinary provision in these countries for the war of next year. The companies, especially the horse, are very low, and no order taken for reinforcements. The King of France expects succours from here, as Calewart reports, under Count Ludwig of Nassau, with Monsieur de la Noue as his lieutenant, but he does not desire so much succour but that the States may be able to keep an army in the field, holding it best to make war on both sides. Has no news of Holland, for he often knows as little here as they do in England. Labours about the fortifications, but fears it will be in vain if the Queen do not “interpose her authority towards the States.”—Flushing, 5 Dec., 1596.
Holograph. Seal. 3 pp. (46. 105.)
Thomas Lord Buckhurst to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 6. “Sir, I am much desirrus to speak with you touching the matter you dealt me (sic) with me in from her Majesty. I do feel myself nothing near recovery, and therefore would be glad to deliver my mind at more length than as yet I have done unto you, for I know it is matter of importance and requireth some speedy resolution.”—6 Dec., 1596.
Holograph. 1 p. (46. 107.)
Dr. Julius Caesar and H. Thoresby to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 6. Yesterday, upon information of divers of this precinct of St. Catherine's, we called before us Thomas Addiquot, upon suspicion of certain demands he enquired of them, concerning the Tower of London and other parts of the realm, which by his examination here enclosed more at large appears. Albeit we find no great cause long to detain him, yet think it fit to commit him till such time as you be therewithal acquainted and your further pleasure known.—St. Catherine's, 6 Dec. 1596.
Signed. 1 p. (174. 46.)
The Enclosure :
1596, Dec. 5.—Examination of Thomas Addequot, of Halberton by Tiburton, taken before Dr. Caesar, Master of Requests, and Mr. Henry Thursby, Justice of the Peace, in Middlesex.
He says he comes now from Ireland, where he has served for 14 years under divers captains, and in these last wars he served in the islands of Arran under the constable of the castle therey against Mark Williams and the “Fleartickes” and divers other rebels of “Connogke.” He landed at Milford Haven 10 weeks since. Touching certain questions he asked concerning the Tower and the river of Thames, with the gates of the Tower, and the ports of the land, with such other like questions, in the presence of William Butler, John Snowe, Markes Signett and Robert Allen and Anne Chamberlayne, who are ready all to depose the same, he says he asked some such questions only for his further instructions of knowledge, being a stranger in these quarters, and not otherwise for any ill intent or meaning to this state.—5 Dec. 1596.
Signed by Addiquot. 1 p. (174. 45.)
Sir Edward Norreys to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 7. “The wind hath been so long contrary that I have not written as often as I would, for though I doubt not but your lordship, amongst these great bruits, is advertised from Spain itself of the certainty of things, yet will it not be unwelcome to hear what is given out in these parts; where of late it hath been very credibly written and sent from Brussels to all places that there were ten thousand Spaniards landed in Ireland, and that they had already taken Waterford and Dublin; and reported with such assurance that I was afraid of it lest it had been true, till I heard out of England that there was no such thing. Here is also great expectation of a fleet to come to Calais with 6000 Spaniards, whilst the Cardinal doth here make great levies of men. It is said he hath given commissions to xxiij regiments, what Almains and Walloons. I believe his first enterprise will be Ostend, which cannot be before the end of March. I think it will be a step to your greatest honour, for I hope the place will be made such by that time that, by the grace of God, you shall have the glory to ruin his army. I will provide your chamber, and all things fit for you, as well as I can and as this poor place will afford. I will not write so much of these things as is reported for I know there are enough that will give the alarm; and, besides, methinks this success of the Turk is like enough to alter their purposes.”—Ostend, 7 Dec. 1596.
Holograph. 3 pp. (46. 108.)
Sir Edward Stafford to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 8. I understand by my wife that upon Pilles' complaint to her Majesty of me, she commanded my Lord Admiral and you to deal with me about it, and that it was your pleasures, for my weakness, to come hither. I beseech you that I may not put you to that trouble, for though I was never so weak in my life after a sickness and can by no means get up, yet if I may wait upon you at Harises, I shall be able to creep thither either to-morrow or on Friday, because upon Saturday I would fain go to “Greenwige” to change air, hoping upon no strength till then. I hope you shall find that I have more cause to ask justice than he.
Holograph. 1 p. (47. 1.)
Thomas, Lord Buckhurst to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 9. I doubt not but that you have delivered to Her Majesty the humble and faithful desire of my heart to do Her Majesty any service that is within my power to perform, and that no travails, pains, nor expenses should or can withdraw me from undertaking the same; whereof, if my former services abroad, the one in France, the other in the Low Countries, and all my dutiful desires to do some acceptable services here at home, do not make sufficient testimony for me and clear all doubts thereof in her Majesty's royal heart, I have little hope that any other service future may attain it. For my present state of body I protest before the Almighty God it is so far from health, as being always subject to rheums and colds in the winter, and thereby forced to defend myself with all warmth and to fly the air in moist or cold weathers, I have not been fit for such a journey as this in this winter time, no, not in my best health, and much less now being possessed with an extreme cold, and the rheum and the cough so increasing upon me as I take not rest above two or three hours in the night at the most. Of these things I thought fit to advertise you, to the end her Majesty may know the same and not to expect that state of body or ability in me the which I feel and know is far from me.—This 9 of December, 1596.
Endorsed :—“Lord Buckhurst to my master. To be excused from going his journey.”
Holograph. 1 p. (47. 2.)
Roger, Lord North to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 9. On Saturday next, God willing, I purpose to perform some duty at the Court to her Majesty, assuring you, good Mr. Secretary, in the word of an honest man, that my heart hath been more grieved with this my absence from the presence of her Majesty than my limbs have been pained with the gout; for the true joy of my heart consisteth more in her Majesty's eyes than in all worldly things else. I have not been idle nor unmindful of her service in that place which I hold, wherein I will serve her faithfully, though I do and shall receive slander and discontent many. I have in this my vacation laboured minutely to understand and make up the account of her Majesty's household charges for the 38th year of her reign, now past, as by a note here enclosed you shall well perceive what hath been spent and spared this year past in every office, which haply you will not suddenly conceive. There is a comparison between the expenses of the 37th year of her reign and this last 38th year. Shortly you shall know her Majesty hath abated her charges and saved 1,217l. odd money. Beside the charges she sustained about the Duke of Bouillon, which amounted to 1,600l. or better, she hath spent 4l. a day more by keeping her four houses than she doth by one house. The Lord knoweth I have care to do her service, yet dare I not entreat for my lodging at Court nor diet; notwithstanding, if of her Majesty's great goodness she would for my health grant both, I durst say that I would save my diet and do her honourable service. I pray you keep these two papers safely for me till I come; the foot of each paper will certify you of all the contents.—At Charterhouse, 9 December, 1596.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (47. 3.)
Dr. Edm. Lilly to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 9. I cannot sufficiently render thanks for your great favour of late in my suit commenced to you at my last being at Court, wherein I doubt not but before this time you have good intelligence of her Majesty's inclination and disposition touching the same. I am and shall be ready to perform all due thankfulness to you if God shall give success. I rest the better in hope for that I am advertised by some that her Majesty hath not been moved as yet in behalf of the adverse part since the death of the party late deceased. If it please you to have any conference with the Lord Buckhurst, our Chancellor, concerning this matter, I think you shall find him very ready to employ his best strength and furtherance in this course.—From Balliol College in Oxon, 9 December, 1596.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (47. 4.)
Francis Cherry and the Merchant Adventurers trading to Muscovia.
1596, Dec. 9. Petition to the Queen. About three months past, upon the arrival of the ships from Russia, the officers of your Admiralty did make choice out of their lading of several quantities of cordage made in cables, cabletts, and cable yarn, to serve your Majesty's navy, and have sithence received the same into your storehouses at Deptford; the price of which doth amount unto 9,254l. 8s. As the same sum for the most part belongeth to young men and others of the company, not able to forbear the use of their stock which chiefly lieth in this commodity, who have been enforced to strain themselves to the uttermost of their credits to pay freight, men's wages, and other ordinary charges, and yet yield your Majesty the cordage at so easy rates as they hardly save their principal, although it exceed in goodness all other by 6s. 8d. in the 100, brought hither at their proper adventure, to the great strengthening of your Majesty's navy and the disappointing of foreign princes of so needful a provision, beg for letters of privy seal for payment of the said sum, and of 658l. 11s. 8d. behind and unpaid for cordage delivered of the last year; making together 9,912l. 19s. 8d. Otherwise your poor subjects shall not be able to provide the cordage bespoken the next year, nor continue their traffic into those countries, which were their utter undoing and discredit for ever.
Endorsed :—“To be paid the money due to them for cordage delivered unto her Majesty's store.”
1 p. (47. 5.)
Thos. Phelippes to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 9. It is now above five years ago that, finding an old decayed intelligence between Sterell and the fugitive traitors on the other side, I did, for the Queen's service, accept an offer made me of restoring the same; knowing much good might be wrought thereon. But as for want of such supplies as mine estate could not afford whilst it was in mine own hand, so through divers errors committed by those your lordship used for the managing of it after I put it over from myself, it was in effect lost and quite overthrown : no good coming of his travails, and the party himself suspected without cause, which should never have troubled me, but that it was told me the Queen, being distasted with the man and the matter, seemed to impute it to weakness of judgment in me, that anything should be expected of the party's endeavours. Whereupon, notwithstanding that my afflictions and griefs (to see all my former services forgotten and those courses held with me which both friends and foes do wonder at) did mightily distract and hinder me, I resolved to make it apparent where the fault was, and that if the intelligence miscarried, it was but for want of good handling. And so in the midst of my troubles, with my carriage and care, together with the party's patience and travail, after many a point doubled, like one that sailed against the wind for a long season, I have recovered a port where I hope your lordship will find this traffic may be both safely and profitably exercised. Which if it be so, I beseech you to recommend my poor industry and devotion to her service unto her most excellent Majesty, in disproof of such most slanderous and false suggestions and reproaches touching my dutiful mind. My good lord, let my fault of falling into her Majesty's debt be what they can make it (although I could, if I were at a point for it, say that for myself which I must now smother) I have been reasonably plagued with one whole year's imprisonment almost, the utter overthrow of my estate and loss of my whole best time. That remains will be short to repent my errant folly in not judging aright of the courses of the world. It is now the question whether her Highness would have her own or no. Her wisest councillor cannot but say the offer I have made is for her best service. I know not how it is crossed, but I can never believe that some say should ever proceed or be bred in her Highness's conceit, that nothing will content her but my ruin, though it be with her own loss. I hope rather to find her most excellent Majesty of Assuerus' mind, and beseech you to vouchsafe your good word for one abandoned of all men almost besides. But to return to the matter whence I have been thus bold to digress, I will pawn my poor refuse credit that is left and my life too, that if it may be carried with that secrecy and caution which is requisite, there shall be as much service drawn out of this intelligence as any of the like nature did ever yield, wherein, since I have brought it thus far, I will by your direction and leave bestow my poor travail, fully knowing the humours and veins of all the parties. You may see how Mr. Wade was overtaken in discovering the promise of taking Garnet. It set Garnet and his crew against our man, so as it cost six months writing to and fro to salve that suspicion though they never charged him with it, or wrote of it, but that by some letters from hence, shewed me by Mr. Wade, I found they accused our man as a dealer with the state, which in some sort at his first going over he did not deny; whereupon your lordship may see the letter from Petit is grounded. But I have conceived it the better way for him now to disclaim you all, and to answer that he hath found means to possess one amongst you of this matter by device; wherein I pray your pardon that I asked not advice, for that he was necessarily to go with his lord out of town towards Wales, whence he will return very shortly, his lord's business being despatched, in the mean season having taken such order as I by an appointed person can continue the intelligence as well as if he were here. Only I must press your lordship to forbear acquainting Mr. Wade with this employment, or that any mention was made of him; for though he be my good friend and an honest faithful gentleman, I know he lies too open to these crafty fences and was kindly overtaken in this action, as when time serves I will more particularly inform you.—This 9th of December, 1596.
[P.S.].—Touching the truth of this negotiation your lordship is best able to judge by your other intelligences. But Owen's meaning is apparent to make debate and mistrust by publishing thereof in this manner. Yet I thought good to send you herewith a few shreds of the same matter out of certain letters sent me to decipher the last year by my Lord Treasurer, written by Dr. Gifford to Thos. Throgmorton, both of the Scots faction.
[Extracts]:—“Here is a proper lord of Scotland come over, called Ogilby, who saith to Paget in secret and assureth him the King of Scots is well inclined, and if he may see men in the field he will venture all to be free. He will be shortly at Rome to talk with the Pope.”
“Uxor Regis Scotorum pro certissimo est reconciliata, sed id est valde secretum, tamen 113 dixit pro compertissimo Pagetto.”
“I have made an abstract of Parsons' book and given it to the Nuncio, who is mad at Parsons, and bid me write to the Bishop of Cassano and assure him that Parsons had ruined himself, and that the Pope would detest his behaviour, and that he could never have done anything more disgustable to the Pope.”
Touching this Pury Ogilby Mr. Archibald Douglas can inform your lordship, who won him to be a spy for Sir Fr. Walsingham, and Mr. Lake who deciphered the letters that came from time to time. I remember he got good store of coin from Mr. Secretary.
Holograph. Seal. 3 pp. (47. 6.)
Spanish News.
1596, Dec. 9. From St. Malo, the 9th of December, 1596.—Fifteen days past came an honest man from Bilbao, who did see letters which came from the general of the Spanish army, wherein was declared that of the fleet were lost 40 ships men of war and 10 or 12 victuallers of St. Lucar; so that of 98 ships they have lost 52, with more than 4,000 soldiers, besides mariners, which certainly were going for Ireland. There was in them in all 7,000 or 8,000 soldiers, 150 horse, 50 long carts, 200 oxen. There were also a number of artificers for building of holds. The loss was at Cape Finisterre. The general was saved and the rest of the ships dispersed. This is of a certain truth. Directed to Mons. le Fort.
½ p. (47. 8.)
Thos. Phelippes to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 9. Here is one original more which come with the last (for all your Lordship hath of that kind with the relation from Petit came by one post), which I marvelled the party should have carried away leaving the rest, but it was stuffed under other papers. But that you desired them for the Queen, I could wish they should, so soon as you be satisfied, be suppressed, for fear of discoveries which may overthrow all your courses. They have promised him fair; if they perform your turn may be served without charge, and then it were a good bargain. If it please her Highness to vouchsafe me an end, I will deserve it by my industry, not only herein but otherwise for the same purpose. I hope I shall not be quite forgotten and thrust out of service and favour without some consideration. I must, if all fail, get some of our clergy to preach her Highness a sermon upon the sixth of Esther. But my good lord, in the meanwhile I beseech you to afford your honourable word, which, God willing, may prevail after so many repulses and delays of others.—This 9th of December, 1596.
Holograph. 1 p. (47. 17.)
Examination of John Wemys, Laird of Logie.
1596. Dec. 9. Joannes Wemys, Scotus ætatis annorum viginti et septem, filius nato major Baronis de Logye apud Scotorum regem consiliarii regii, examinatus coram prudentissimis et magnificis dominis et consulibus urbis Veriensis, præssentibus clarissimis dominis consiliariis ordinum Zelandiæ dominis Jacobo de Maldere et Caspare Vosbergio, declarat jam annis ab hinc duobus se excessisse patriam eo animo ut uxorem in Holsutia degentem inviseret. Qua non inventa dicit se ulterius profectum, ex mandato regio peregrinari coactum propter familiaritatem initam cum Comite Botielio, cujus tamen partes nunquam fuisset secutus, publice asserens sibi injunctum a Rege ne rediret in patriam rege ipso inscio et sine ejusdem speciali permissu et licentia. Adeo ut modo jam dicto relegatus pertransierit ipsam Septentrionalem Germaniam, deflexerit in inferiorem Brabantiam, ibique appulsus Bruxellis dicit se incidisse in suspicionem apud hostem ex causa literarum quas dicit se conscripsisse ad Comitem Essexium ejus tenoris, ut eo graviter commoti (dum fraude cujusdam Angli in eorum manus incidissent) ipsum conjecerint in carcerem, donec post menses novem isthince liberatus intercessione Episcopi Rossensis tandem evaserit. Ita tamen ut dum jam sub egressu conveniret Præsidem Richardotum pro impetrando salvo conductu, graviter ab eo sit increpatus quod nimirum Reginæ Angliæ ea per prædictas litteras declarasset quæ Regi Scotiæ in maximum præjudicium et detrimentum cedere possent. Tandem tamen dimissum cum literis clausis et consignatis pro suo salvo conductu servientibus ad præfectum in Ordam, dicit se ab hinc mensibus duobus, si recte meminerit, in has partes appulisse, et ab eo tempore se ut plurimum in hac urbe diversatum, quo cum appulisset dicit se scripsisse ad regem pro impetrando in reditum commeatu et licentia, cujus se dicit literas aut nuncium expectare : negans sibi in istis partibus aliam prorsus rem intercessisse nec publice nec privatim. In cujus, &c., nono Decembris 1596. J. Vvemys.
Endorsed :—“Loggy's examinations and confessions.”
1 p. (47. 14.)
Confession of John Wemys, Laird of Logie.
1596, Dec. 10. Joannes Wemys, virtute sententiæ in ipsum latæ ab amplissimis dominis Senatoribus urbis Veriensis qua, adjudicatus tor-turæ, negotii et proditionis a se conceptæ esset expetenda plena veritas; jam deductus in ipsum torturæ locum et vestibus nudatus (extra tamen omnem torturam) de supradictis propius rogatus, declaravit se jam solutum de juramento quo se obstrictum tenebat, de non revelanda animi sui conceptione nisi ad similem extremitatem reductum, et proinde se paratum rei totius puram veritatem prædictis dominis Senatoribus indicare, modo et terminis subsequentibus : Nimirum Episcopum Rossensem Scotum ante vitæ obitum intercessisse apud Cardinalem Albertum pro reo tunc temporis captivo Bruxellis ex causa in confessione sua præ-cedenti contenta, atque eo mortuo reum institisse apud Ferdinandum Carillium rerum criminalium apud hostem Præsidem Hispanum, quo ejusdem Rossensis intercessione interposita dimitteretur, qui non de dimissione sed de vita retinenda ipsum agere debere respondit. Quo motus exhibuit ipse reus libellum supplicem prædicto Alberto Cardinali pro impetranda sua dimissione. Tandem dicit summo quodam mane ante horam septimam ad se in carcerem venisse Doct. Hamiltonium Jesuitam Scotum aliis duobus ejusdem ordinis Hispanis comitatum, qui proposuerunt captivo reo unicum superesse remedium quo et vitam conservet et carcerem diurniorem fugiat, si juramento interposito se substringat se profecturum in Zelandiam vel Hollandiam ibique inda-gaturum in quavis urbe maritima, aut Veriensi, aut Flissingana, aut Briliensi, aut Bergensi, virum aliquem fidum, aut suæ nationis Scotum aut Anglum aut cujusvis alterius ad hoc aptum et commodum, qui possit aliquam istarum urbium in ipsorum potestatem reducere. Hac interposita stipulatione, ac super ea sua interposita fide ac juramento dicit se dimissum, ac in hanc urbem appulisse eo animo ut quod supra ad amussim exequeretur. In quem finem se dicit compellasse præfectum militarum Zegerium Rolleum cum quo inito contractu de prodenda in manus ac potestatem hostium urbe Veriensi se fatetur transegisse. Et duplicatam a parte prædicti Rollei in hanc rem obligationem se obtinuisse quidem et sinu circumgestasse, atqui se eam ipsa nocte captivitatis suæ subsequente dilacerasse, ac ejusdem frusta devorasse ac comedisse integra. Cujus actionis remunerationem prædicti Hamiltonius et cæteri ratam et firmam se facturos affirmaverant, etiamsi ad centum ducatorum millia ipsius remunerationis promissio sese extenderet. *Rogatus qua ex causa Bruxellis fuerit detentus captivus, dicit se concepisse literas in diversa capita distinctas quibus inter cætera nitebatur persuadere Comiti Essexio ex usu esse rerum Anglicarum fovere Scotos, nec ulterius serenda inter ipsos dissidia, aut procuranda magnatum exilia, sed potius eosdem Reginæ intercessione apud regem esse sublevandos et patriæ restituendos, quo sibi eos in posterum obstrictos habeat : nam se videre ea nobilium virorum nominis Scotici exiliis, et relegatione, regni vires maximopere debilitari, nec Reginæ quicquam accedere quam eorundem odium extremum, utpote qui suæ calamitatis causam in eandem conjiciant. Addidisse insuper ea quæ privatim e patribus quibusdam ordinis Jesuitici intellexerat de obsidione tum instanti, et proxime subsequuta urbis Caletensis. Se præterea hoc subjunxisse, obiter tamen, quosdam nationis Scoticæ esse dimissos a patribus ejusdem ordinis, qui ad hoc mandatum receperant a pontifice, qui regem ad pacem religioni pontificiæ in suo regno concedendam exhortarentur, atqui non explanasse ulterius ea quæ hac de re latius jam declarabit : adnotasse tamen in margine ipsarum literarum nomina eorum qui ad regem Scotiæ forent ablegandi, nimirum dominum Zachar Crichtonium et alium quendam Elpiston, cujus primi se dicit post appulsum in Scotiam vidisse literas, quibus iisdem patribus significabat se ea quæ apud regem procuranda susceperat exequi adhuc non potuisse, reservanda in tempus et occasionem magis commodam; finem vero hujus legationis ad Scotorum regem fuisse quo, ut supra, pace religioni pontificiæ concessa, singulis mensibus aureorum millia decem a pontifice sibi erogarentur, ac in belli subsidium, quod ad juris sui prosequutionem sibi ad Angliæ regnum competentis necessario suscipiendum foret validissima præsidia militaria retenta, ac in regis usum transmittenda, quibus et ea subsidia inter eosdem patres ferebatur promptissime debere accedere, quæ ab Anglis ipsis Catholicis offerrentur, ad decem ut minimum millia militum, et centena millia coronatorum, quo sic tandem ipse rex a captivitate qua ipsum detineri causantur emancipatus liberius Regem agat. Rogatus quam urbem istarum partium sibi dedi præ cæteris exoptaret hostis, dicit aut Flissinganam aut Brielensem sed se nihil de istis egisse.* Ut vero hosti de eo quod in hac parte executus fuisset potuisset significare quam occultissime, dicit se in hoc convenisse cum prædicto Hamiltonio et cæteris, ut postquam huc appulisset quidam ipsis fidus huc transmitteretur cum hoc nuncio sibi pro tessera serviendo : se nimirum venire missum ab Hamiltonio pro negotio sibi noto ac idem fuisse commonstrandum ac in ejus præsentiam deducendum eum ipsum, cum quo de deditione alicujus prædictarum urbium egisset. Hunc vero istorum emissarium nendum comparuisse; fieri tum posse ex nunc appulisse, at vero per ejus captivitatem adventum et mandatum celare. In cujus fidem et testimonium istis subscripsit præsentibus amplissimis dominis Senatoribus prædictæ urbis Veriensis, et amplissimis dominis ordinum Zelandiæ consiliariis ad hoc specialim deputatis decimo Decembris, anno millesimo quingentesimo nonagesimo sexto. J. Vvemys.
[For a copy of the portion of the above between the asterisks, see S.P. Dom. Eliz., Vol. 261, No. 4, in the Public Record Office.]
1 ½ pp. (47. 13.)
Sir Anthony Cope to the Privy Council.
1596, Dec. 10. For the restraint of the recusants in the Castle of Banbury, I have taken order that the house, with provision necessary, is ready whensoever you send them into it. I have drawn myself also with my family to a house I have near unto Banbury, to attend your further pleasures. For their diet I have enquired the rates. The gentlemen paid weekly 12s., and for their men 5s., which at that time was thought very small. They had officers to attend upon them, one of good credit in our absence to see their letters and to hear their conference with such as resorted to them. They had likewise a porter at the gate. These officers, being very necessary, had no allowance from them either for their pains or diet, insomuch as myself was enforced to consider the porter out of mine own purse. Some consideration might be made by the gentlemen weekly for their chambers, which in my opinion might be converted to the maintenance of these officers, or such others as by you shall be thought fit for their better safe-keeping.—From Hanwell, this 10th of December, 1596.
Endorsed :—“For increase of allowance for the Recusants.”
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (47. 11.)
William Stallenge to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 10. Since my last of the 4th there are arrived certain ships from Rochelle and Bordeaux, whose companies report that in those parts they heard say that divers ships of the Spanish fleet were cast away within the Bay of Aragon, but where or how many they cannot certainly declare; so that it appears by means of extreme foul weather the fleet is dispersed, particularly in what sort I cannot certify you.
Captain Croftes and Captain Harper remain still in this harbour for that they have not had any wind to depart from hence. I have here delivered unto Captain Harper 3l. upon account of his entertainment, but mean not to deliver him any more without further order.—Plymouth, 10 December, 1596.
Endorsed :—“Your honour's servant Mr. Stallenge.”
Holograph. ⅓ p. (47. 12.)
Thos. Phelippes to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 10. I have sent you these originals, which by good hap the party left with me, deciphering them in my chamber here, which I was never wont to seek at his hands, being mixed oftentimes with frivolous matter and private; in truth because I would not seem to distrust anything but deal confidently with a man whom I had not mean, either by authority or benefit, to hold more than himself should like, and I found that men made no difficulty to betray them whom they saw did not trust them, according to the saying, fides obligat fidem. Yet [I] handled the matter so from time to time as I took the things I thought necessary to abstract beforehand. The manner and the reason I will, when time serves, impart to your lordship. In the mean season, if you think there will be use of him, he prayed his lord might be written unto to let him come up the sooner. And I beseech you to make my peace, if it be possible, the difficulties whereof my wife, that had followed the suit this twelve months, can inform you. But one especially is that one man hath vowed to be my ruin. If I were at an end I would say more, but if I had never done that I did about the Queen of Scots, I had not had some enemies I have.—This 10th of December, 1596.
[P.S.].—That concerning the King of Scots I hope your lordship conceives not but it is the same was sent, and the meaning of the writer was that if he had given over intelligence with your lordship he should put in another hand the effect of the letter to Robinson.
Endorsed in a modern hand :—“The man who deciphered the intercepted letters to and from the Queen of Scots, acknowledged, or at least referred to, by himself in this letter. Vide Echard's History of England, p. 853.”
Holograph. 1 p. (47. 15.)
Sir Ferdinando Gorges to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 10. The 8th of this present here was a man of Rotterdam whose name is Peter Fecke, master of a ship called the Black Eagle of the same town, that was taken sounding of the harbour from the one side unto the other. What his meaning was therein I know not, but the time being such as it is it cannot be but suspicious, wherefore in discharge of my duty I thought it meet to advertise you of it. I have examined divers that have known him a long time, both Englishmen and his own countrymen, of the manner of his life and conversation heretofore, and they all do seem to protest much for his honesty and simple intent as having a desire only to acquaint himself with the harbour, taking it to be a thing belonging unto him as he was a mariner, not thinking he had committed any offence. I have taken order for his forthcoming and do mean that he shall rest here until I know farther your pleasure. The shipping that cometh from Rochelle and Bordeaux and those parts do all of them confirm our last to you concerning the casting away of the Spaniards, and all of them after one manner.—From the fort at Plymouth, this 10th day of December, 1596.
Holograph. Seal, broken. 1 p. (47. 16.)
Jacomo Marenco to the Earl of [Essex].
1596, Dec. 10/20. Has written all he has learnt since coming to this Court. Has since learnt from a friend two important things, one that Mons. Amalteo, who was secretary of the legation in Poland, returned to Rome at the time two couriers arrived from Spain with orders for a peace with this Crown; and the Pope thereupon sent him (Amalteo) to France, as secretary of this legation, secretly to commence a treaty of peace. He has arrived in Paris and commenced the practice with Calvezza; and thereupon the Legate came hither eight days ago and yesterday presented a brief to the King's sister. They are now meeting to discuss the particulars of the peace.
The other thing of importance is that a friend in blaming Spain for sending out such a strong armada and leaving Portugal defenceless says there is not a single arquebuse left there, so that a very small armada could there meet with no resistance, and the men who have escaped of this armada are too terrified to be feared.—Roans, 20 Dec. 1596.
Address mutilated. Italian. 2 pp. (174. 56.)
J. Guicciardini to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 11/21. Almost entirely in cipher.—21 December, 1596.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (47. 40.)
(i) Decipher of the above. With more haste than good speed I find my going into England, how secret soever I thought to have kept it, was by some Englishmen that met me on the way openly published in Florence, and by that means notice thereof given into the Inquisition, from whence I had long since received a precept not to return into England without leave; and now, as I hear, they have in my absence framed a process against me and already laid wait for me. I had at Venice advertisement given me not to come into Florence by any means, but not knowing from whence they came, I imagined it to be but a practise of my adversaries to keep me from thence; but at my arrival in Florence, I found the intelligence I received in Venice was sent me by the Duke of Florence's order, by whose direction likewise I did retire myself presently into a place of more safety, where I do yet remain, doubtful what will become of this matter, for that in causes of this nature the authority of these princes doth very little avail, and therefore [they] do not willingly interpose themselves to make trial thereof. I have not as yet spoken with the Duke, so as I cannot advertise your lordship of matters as I would.
[P.S.].—I beseech your lordship let this matter be kept secret, and if you send any letters unto me, that they may be delivered to Hicks the mercer, and the superscription made, “To Lewis Caddi.”
In the hand of Essex's secretary.
Endorsed :—“Mr. Guicciardini's letter deciphered.”
1 p. (47. 39.)
Felicia Vasques to Captain Jeremy Yuañes.
1596, Dec. 11/21. Sends him news of herself and of the little Catalina, his daughter, and of their poverty and difficulties since the sack of Cadiz.—Cadiz, 21 Dec. 1596.
Begins :—“Brother.” Addressed :—“Jeronimo Yvañes, yngles, natural de Bristol, capitan de la armada yngles, en Londres.”
Spanish. Holograph. 3 pp. (47. 41.)
M. de Reau to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 11/21. Cest honneste homme present porteur ma mis un peu en peine a mon arrivee en ce lieu, parce qu'il ma dit que vous m'aviex fait une depesche qui estoit arrivee a Douvres mecredy dernier, deux heures apres mon embarquement. Lequel a este si disgratie que des le jour suivant, je fus contraint de relascher a Margat sans avoir este seulement possible de gaigner Boulougne, quelque effort que le Captaine Bradghaett y ayt sceu faire : qui ma assiste, comme il fait encores, de tout son pouvoir : et m'en retourne presentement a Douvres, attendre une meilleure fortune, s'il plaist a Dieu me lenvoyer. De quoy je n'ay voulu faillir de vous donner advis, afin que si ladite depesche estoit esgaree, ou quelle vous ayt este reportee, et que ce soit chose que jugies necessairc ou importante, vous y puissiez remedier a votre commodite. D'aultant que les maistres en l'art ne me donne pas esperance de me pouvoir rembarquer que la lune ne soit plus forte. A l'aventure sera il survenu quelque nouveaute, sur laquelle la Royne sera bien aise de me rafraichir la memoire de ses voluntez et m'honorer derechef de ses commandemens. Comme je vous suplie aussy me donner les votres et mesclaircir sil vous plaist par mesme moyen d'un bruit qui court de ca de quelque trouble arrive a Paris contre les Tresoriers, ou le Roy sest achemine en toute diligence, qui est a mon advis la raison qui ma retarde davoir depuys ce temps la de ses nouvelles.—Sandwich, 21 Dec. 1596.
Signed. 1 p. (174. 58.)
Sir Robert Sydney to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 12. Captain Berry's lieutenant brought me word from you that you would move my leave. I thank you for it and send over this bearer of purpose to bring me an answer from you. I beseech you that you will despatch him whether it be obtained or not. I do make a small start into Holland about some things that concern the general, for I would fain put the fortifications of this town in some good way against the spring. Some other occasions have I also for myself, but as soon as I hear from you I will presently come away.—At Flushing, the 12 of December, 1596.
Holograph. 1 p. (47. 20.)
Pedro del Castillo to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 12/22. Reminds him of his word given in Cadiz, that when the prisoner whom Don Guillermo had at Dunkirk should have his liberty, the writer would have his. That prisoner is now free and here in London.
“And since the letter of the Duke of Medina for the Cardinal does not come in time for me to avail myself of it, I am ready to seek means to satisfy and pay the amount which the said prisoner might have (huviere) paid for his ransom.” Was the first after the fall of Cadiz to put himself under English protection, and it was in his house that Essex lodged. Great men like him are wont to reward their hosts : asks him therefore, as he could not do it in Cadiz, to do it in England by not permitting Don Guillermo to delay his liberty.—Plamica [Plymouth?], 22 Dec. (?) 1596.
Addressed :—Captain of the Royal Armada, at London.
Spanish. Holograph. 1 p. (47. 46.)
William Lilly to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 13. I have been at Rouen this last week past, from whence the King was parted that morning we arrived, but found the same place governed and the whole assembly by the Constable and Villeroy, or rather by Villeroy who in truth swayeth all : the assembly there being the cause that the King parted thence, he having demanded of them some days before his parture 6 millions to be delivered to himself for the charge of his wars in ready money, and 3 millions towards the payment of his debts, and all to be levied this year, the same assembly grew so insolent upon him in other demands to him as he [was] weary of them, and of a nature good and not able to endure much consultation and less importunacy, determined to fly all and absent himself for certain days, whereto he took occasion upon a certain stay of money which was made at Paris. This parture was thought strange to every man, and the Constable dissuading him from it, he answered that he had rather die in the field than be tormented amongst them as he was, and be brought to that which he could not endure. They are in this assembly infinitely confounded amongst themselves. The King and his party, I mean the most honestest, desire the wars against Spain and the continuation of our league and the States; but the greatest part that now seek ease, and to enrich themselves seek peace with the King of Spain as the most immediatest way thereto, respect no future to enjoy that presently. Those of the religion they content for the present, but certainly all this cannot be but greatly to their prejudice, albeit it is thought that the best of them concur in this desire; some with the wearisomeness of war, and others drawn by other means. It is thought now at the King's return that they will 'unimamentlie' demand this peace, and for this cause have made the legate come to Rouen, who from his master hath charge to offer peace and rendition of all towns and places in France saving Calais. What reason the Pope hath to solicit this your lordship may judge, and to obtain it at men's hands thus disposed, I think it not hard. There is nothing that may hinder this but the King's own good nature (which the contrary faction term trop bon) and some of his, as the Marshall Biron who is all his and stands upon most honest terms for all, and especially for the league with us and for the respect the King ought to have for Her Majesty. My lord, I am not able to assemble all the reasons that have been given to me to prove the necessity they will bring the King to this peace by constraint, but this one, that they will break up this assembly without effecting anything, and that if that he call them again, they will not come. But now to prove unto you how much this is contrary unto the King's nature and will to grant unto, this you shall see, at this time he treateth with oyzctc (Ursini) about matters of the kingdom of Naples. This man hath great credit in all Italy, and hath intelligence with all the princes there; he is infinitely ill handled of the Pope, and by all means seeketh revenge of him. At this time the King is in hand to send to the great Seriphe [Shereef] which is the King of Morockes [Morocco] to treat a conclusion of a war against Spain, for that the King of Spain hath assisted his brother against him. I know the present he will send him is ready, and his ambassador named, and the instructions written. Besides this, Lesdiguières is now ready to receive money, viz. 300,000 crowns, to return into Provence and to make the war upon the Duke of Savoy by Shombery and those parts : and it was determined that Marshal Biron should take the other side, Bresia and those parts, and so charge him every way. These are sufficient proofs of the King's will and intent. Diguières is furnished of this money because he is a man of counsel and they would have his absence, withal he shall be made Marshal of France to content him farther. They use this end to draw Biron from the army here, and have placed lieutenant St. Luc, a man infinitely inclined to this peace and a protested enemy to our league, Ferraques and he having in public assembly protested the same, and Ferraques at our arrival demanded what this maudite nation did here now; and the other spake so much as the King rebuked him therefor; the taking of an English merchant which was somewhat rich, being the greatest subject (it is thought) that he is thus angry with us. The King being now at Paris he received the money that could not have been received without his presence, and thereupon hath promised them to return to them before Twelfthtide and bring both the Councils with him and stay with them. If you had heard the rumours that were cast out at Rouen of his parture and the several opinions thereof you would have wondered. Now if he fulfil his promise, of this assembly we shall see the fruits very shortly. The legate arrived thither, as it is said, by water entreated by these men to assist them in their intents. Howbeit that he is esteemed bonne personne and a Florentine, yet is he and his master desirous to have a peace amongst his Christians. This man is old and no statesman, but the nuncio, who is of the same nation, is. The legate hath spoken to Madame and delivered her the Pope's letter. They had great discourse together, but yet we hear not what the letter was, because upon the present she read it not, and after was so troubled with learning new dances against these holy times as we could not before our parture hear nothing of it. Now she is despatched of Montpensier her heart is eased, and albeit Montpensier is well matched with Joyeuse's daughter, yet I think it grieveth him that he should be drawn to the first and now by the King himself appointed to this. This match doth infinitely strengthen the Constable's house and Epernon's amongst the rest. This young prince is much aliened from the King, and begins to make a faction, and it is thought he affecteth Spain. Soissons keepeth at home at his house discontented, and the more his mistress loves him the more the King hateth him; yet is he infinitely beholden to the people for love. The Constable doth follow business as Constable and not of his own affection, in which and his desires he is licentious and altogether given to his pleasures, for which the King raileth at him infinitely and he at the King. He is esteemed a weak man, his only endeavour now is to make his house strong by marriages, and his love is devoted to Madme. de Symyers. De Mayne is at the court obedient to the King's pleasure altogether, and when question was made that the Protestants should dismantle their towns and quit their garrisons, he offered to do the same and put himself in his cape with rapier as the King should command. I hold him well instructed by Villeroy his old friend. Epernon is at Rouen also and as familiar with this King as ever he was with the other, and holdeth his estate excellent well and best of any man here. He gropeth into the finances, and if the establishments of the King's receipts be once made, he will obtain a chief command there as the place of most gain; he is esteemed the best œconomique of all France at this day. He playeth much and keepeth greatest cheer; in th'other King's time he laid up sufficient for this hard time. Villeroy and Lesdiguières both now court him every day, and both have sought to make him away. The negotiation of peace with Mercury is come only to a truce of three months, and that is only to attend the King's pleasure whether he will enter into treaty also with the King of Spain, without whom he will do nothing, albeit Shomberg and Plessis have threatened and persuaded all that they can. The Duke of Florence hath lent the King men and gallies to keep the coast of Provence and those parts near the Mediterranean Sea, and Alfonza di Scorsa his brother is sent to Marseilles to correspond with the Duke for the safety of the same place and the rest of his business in Italy. The Duke of Savoy is thought will presently in arms, and it is sure that of the levy of 12,000 Suisses the King of Spain hath made now he shall have 4,000, and the rest shall go the Cardinal for the Low Countries. It is assured from Genoa that the Cardinal hath sent to Prince Doria 300,000 crowns to provide timber, forsats, and shipwrights there, to send them into the Low Countries, which is without doubt to make gallies and use them in the Narrow Seas. It is also assured from thence that this army from Spain was certainly for Ireland, for that, say they, all the Irish priests of Italy and Spain and some out of France and the Low Countries were sought up and placed therein. Of the wrack thereof they speak diversely here; out of Italy they say he lost 14 ships, and here 60. It is assured that he never made so great levies in Italy or Spain as he doth at this present, and that Spain is full of soldiers. The said King going about to make a partie for 6 millions with the Genoese, 3 for Lisborn, and 3 for the Low Countries, for that they granted to furnish th'one and refused th'other he hath seized all the merchants' treasure of the Indian fleet, which was 9 millions and 4 of his own, which is 13, which he hath in his hands now to use. He payeth the Genoese nothing upon this discontent and referreth the rest of the particulars to the spring for payment. Upon this all Italy crieth out upon the bankrouts, and at Lyons all those who meddled with Spain are undone. Upon the assurance of this messenger I have sent you two discourses; the one I am sure you already know, the other should have been sent you by another means, but the secretary of the said Italian, my old friend and acquaintance, hath desired me to do it and to understand your will therein, which I beseech your lordship to do with some speed, that he that hath long believed in me may see I have some credit with your lordship. Besides, my lord, this man will always advertise me all th'occurrents of this Court and those of Italy and Spain, being an Italian jealous of Spain and long practised here. If I shall entertain his endeavours you must give order for some little present to be made to him. I have another who doth acquaint me generally with all the King's finances and those practices which depend of distributions of money, besides can and will inform me all the secret actions of the iotznghel (Constable), and his name is Zgykctc (Sardini). Your lordship may enquire of Sir Edward Stafford whether he be not one of the wisest men in France. This man much honoureth you and so do many more here at this Court, amongst whom Fouquerolles much preacheth your praises. But this other man beseecheth you not to measure the French after your own bounty, but after their own worth, and that is nothing; but if it please you to know them and so to use them as the greatest infidels you shall give them their right, for he hath known them impairing these 45 years, and now so bad as they cannot be worse, and of their actions attendeth nothing but confusion. He esteemeth the iotznghel (Constable) a buso and worth nothing in counsel. These men in general desire our nation hence, for that the King and those of the religion rely upon our valours and have a strange opinion of that may be effected by us, which is contrary to their desires that treat this Spanish peace. I am assured that if these men do not fail of their purposes we shall come into no towns for garrison, for that they think us too strong. At our parture [from] Rouen the King's mistress went to Pont de larche to meet him (she being after her travail increased in beauty), accompanied with all the gallants of the court. This woman doth him infinite wrong in his reputation, for that she effects great things at his hands, and by them Sancy and Villeroy both deceive him, her, and the people. My lord, I have understood by Wlylz (Peres) that nbgfhgzgky (th'ambassador) is neither your servant nor friend, that in discourse he should say that you zunbnuhlwnwocly (sought to be popular) and had the men-at-war at your command, with a hard conclusion. And another told me that nbldcta (the King) should find that he was not to you as the rest had been. Iufhly (Combes) speaking in your lordship's praise, he willed him to leave speaking of particulars and follow the general. That man is secret and honest and frequents many good places, the loves and duties he bears you will command him to do anything; I leave the rest to your lordship. St. Aldegonde is here and is going, as they say, to Orange for the Count Maurice, whereat I marvel, he being not heir thereunto. Between him and Calvart, the States' agent, there is no good intelligence but as it were some piques, which makes me think he acteth somewhat wherewith th'other is discontented.—Omall, this 13 of December 1596.
[The words in italics in brackets are written over their ciphers.]
Holograph. 4 ½ pp. (47. 21.)
The Archbishop of Canterbury to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 13. Encloses the form of a letter, according to his desire, which he is to alter as he shall think good.—From Lambeth, 13 December, 1596.
Holograph. ¼ p. (47. 23.)
English Troops in France.
1596, Dec. 13. “A certificate of the present, absent, and deficient of the 13 foot bands serving in the aid of the French King in Picardy, thereby to make payment of a week's imprest, beginning this Monday the 13th of December 1596.”
The total officers, soldiers, and dead pays to be allowed for are as follows :—Sir Thos. Baskerville's regiment, the Colonel general's company, 208; the companies of Sir John Aldrich, Captain Arthur Chichester, Henry Power, Rafe Bosevile, John Berkeley, and Edward Gorges, 158 each. Sir Arthur Savage's regiment, the Colonel's company and the companies of Sir Jarret Harvey, Sir Francis Ruske, Captains Edward Wylton, John Pooley, and John Brooke, 158 each. Examined and certified by Sir Thos. Baskerville and William Lilley, and presented to Sir Thos. Sherley, her Majesty's Treasurer at wars for France and the Low Countries, or to his deputy for Picardy.
Copy. 2 pp. (47. 24.)
The Vice-Chancellor and Senate of Cambridge University to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 13. Letter of compliment—Senate House, Cambridge, Id. Decem., 1596.
Latin. 1 p. (136. 49.)
Sir Jo. Aldrycho to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 13. I cannot advertise you of any matters of service in the wars, for as yet we have been called to none. We have had opportunity in this idle time to make our men perfect in martial exercises, which we have not failed to do, and have bred so good an opinion in them of themselves, that they desire to put in execution and make proof what they have learned, which we all wish might be where our earnest desires might be seen to do your honour the Queen and country that service which we think this ungrateful nation not worthy of. This is both a dangerous and wavering kingdom, as I fear by some presumptions ere long will be seen.—Beaumalle, 13 Dec. 1596.
Endorsed :—“Sir J. Aldrege.”
1 p. (174. 52.)
Captain Ed. Wylton to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 13. I met with Sir Charles Davers at Court and found him much discontent with your Lordship for not accepting his service this last journey to Cales. He extenuateth your actions there as much as may be, but I think rather suggested by others than of himself. He is now wholly for the Treasurer, who finding his sufficiency maketh no small account of his service, and hath sent him (as I suppose) to the frontier of Savoy to attend and advertise him of the designs of that Prince and of the King of Spain. I have been with Senor Perez and offered him my service : he is now as well known in France as he was before in England. Mons. Sancy hath entertained him since his last coming over for the discovery of your Lordship's secret courses only (as it is thought), and now he hath gained what he can at his hands, hath quit him again.
The K. in this Assembly purposeth to cut off the superfluous number of the financiers and other officers, meaning to tax the Crown with as small a charge as may be, the better to furnish himself with money for his wars.
But it is said they have urged him to such an inconvenience touching the Spanish affairs that he was glad to apprehend a feigned occasion to go to Paris and Fontein Bleau, from whence he is not yet returned, and that except he condescend unto them in that business, they mean to conclude nothing in his behalf. The Marshal de Biron is returned from the border of Artoys, leaving the army between Amiens and Corbye full of plagues and miseries. It consisteth of 7,000 French and 1,500 “Swish,” as they say. Mr. Constable goeth shortly into Italy and meaneth to lie at Rome; your Lordship may have his service at your devotion if you please. I have not seen the Marshal de Buillon since my coming, but desired Mr. Lyly to offer him my service as you willed me. He told me he answered that he was going to Sedan and that the occasions now were not great. We begin to have some sickness among us but hope our men will shortly be past the worst.—Aumale, 13 Dec. 1596.
Partly in cipher, with contemporary decipher.
Endorsed :—Captain Wilton.
[See Birch's Memoirs. Vol. 2. p. 229.]
Holograph. 2 pp. (174. 53.)
Emanuel Martinez to —.
1596, Dec.13/23. The great desire I know you have to serve God and the lord our King doth embolden me to write, being matters none may know than God and you and these two men. I go to give the King some letters, upon the point that some Hollanders have promised me to deliver 300 mariners, upon condition that they will accommodate his Majesty; whereupon I pray you to do me the same, which unto you shall be well rewarded, and also unto those which shall do it. That they should know it in the Canal of Spain I will advertise the same, and they will do the best and all that shall be possible. You shall endeavour to get some ships or people if it possible for it be matters [in] which are bound unto our King. I am of the house of his Majesty and am named Emanuel Martinez.—Out of Calis, the 23 December, 1596.
Headed :—“Translated out of Dutch.”
¾ p. (47. 49.)
Count Maurice of Nassau to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 13/23. Asking him to obtain from the Queen her licence for the bearer to export some geldings from England.—The Hague, 23 Dec. 1596.
Signed. Seal. French. ½ p. (147. 126.)
Captain Arthur Chichester to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec. 14. Pardon my bold adventuring to entertain your leisure with my unworthy scribblings; it may chance in time I shall become a better secretary for striving to write something worthy your view. I beseech you to excuse my not doing my duty unto your lordship before my coming over, for though I bought it with as many weary steps as are betwixt Nonsuch and London, yet I failed of my desire, as I did in following you in your late most honourable action, when, God knows, I was desirous to quit all actions once to have adventured my life for your service. We are here like wandering pilgrims, every place thought too good for us till necessity make them know we are their best aids. For my part, I could wish you had occasion to command my services to the Indies, where we should be still in action upon hopes of something. The wars have brought all things here to so extreme a rate that though we have honourable entertainment, we shall return poor men. Our best hopes are that the King will shortly draw us to some of his intended services, and after have mind of Boulogne and Moustreuil.—De Aurnale, this 14th of December, 1596.
Holograph. 1 p. (47. 25.)
The Lieutenant Governor of Bayonne to the Earl of Essex.
1596, Dec.14/24. Concerning the capture of a ship of 50 tons belonging to certain merchants of Bayonne and Capbreton when the English “naval army” was last at Cadiz, the ship with its merchandize being carried to London by Captain Treve, brother of the Secretary of my lord Admiral. Points out how different has been the treatment of the merchants and subjects of the Queen of England on their side. Commanding in the town and country adjacent in the absence of Monseigneur de Gramont, could do no less than represent the matter and begs Essex's aid to obtain redress.—Bayonne, 24 December, 1596.
Signed. French. 1 p. (47. 37.)
Sir Edward Stafford to the Lord Admiral and Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 15. I beseech you to move her Majesty of one thing which I had forgotten yesterday-night when you came hither; that it would please her Majesty, as I have willingly satisfied that bad fellow (for in my soul so he is) upon her sending only, either to command you to tell Pilles somewhat roundly, or else if it pleased her Majesty to favour me so much, as seeing she received of him the complaint against me, she would deliver him her pleasure herself, that as he hath received more than justice, considering the equities of the cause (though I was bound), that she will see me have justice, and if I cannot be satisfied otherwise, that she will write to the King to desire him to give me justice. This is but justice and equity that I ask of her, and without you I know this bad fellow will make his profit to my discredit of the favour he hath received.
Holograph. 1 p. (47. 26.)
Dr. Julius Cesar to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 15. I have, as this shortness of time would suffer me, set down so much as I can find fit to be observed, touching the injustice offered by the French against Thomas Bramley and Henry Farington, of London, merchants, and likewise concerning this last unjust arrest and stay of Englishmen's goods in Rouen; and also a brief note of such spoils as the French have made on the goods of the English since May, 1586, whereof, notwithstanding long and chargeable pursuits, no restitution or satisfaction can be procured. All which conjoined may give sufficient cause to the French King to stay this late arrest granted without any just ground of his own law, and contrary both to the civil law and to the league between these two kingdoms.—From St. Katherine's, this 15th of December, 1596.
Signed. ½ p. (47. 27.)
Sir Griffin Markham to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 15. I have been now a week imprisoned, for the most part close, or at least at the discretion of the keepers; I would not endeavour to sue for any lightening of my punishment for fear it should prove a delaying to my entire delivery. My offence you know, and I protest I have concealed nothing, my reputation in the world, as I hear, much impaired, for being before my arrival slanderously reported, this imprisonment hath coloured a confirmation. If I were faulty I protest I would not sue, but my offence proceeding rather from an intention to do good than any young curious conceit or searching humour further than to enable myself to her Majesty's service, I rely of her gracious clemency, and your favour.—From the Fleet, this 15th of December.
Signed. 1 p. (47. 28.)
Dorothy, Lady Willoughby to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 15. I have emboldened myself, in regard of your protection of me and mine in my late troublesome suit in the Court of Wards, in case of a very undue attempt and ungodly practice put in use by Percival Willoughby and the other late feoffees of Sir Francis Willoughby, my late husband, not only to disinherit the child I go withal, but also to prejudice her Majesty of the wardship thereof, contrary to the true intention of Sir Francis. For whereas he in his life time about the year 34 Eliz., having then no issue male of his body, did by indenture convey to feoffees and their heirs his chief mansion house and lands, to the value of 2,000l. by year, to the use of himself for life and after to the use of his first son to be begotten and the heirs males of the body of such first son; and so successively to ten sons; and for default of such sons then to the use of Percival Willoughby and Bridget his wife, one of the daughters of the said Sir Francis, and the heirs males of their bodies, then to the use of Edward Willoughby and Winifred his wife, another daughter of Sir Francis, and the heirs males of their bodies, and afterwards to his own right heirs. Sithence which conveyance Sir Francis died leaving me then and yet great with child. Howbeit Percival Willoughby, in whose possession the lands remain until the birth of the said child, and the said feoffees by his persuasion, go about now, before the birth of the child, to make feoffments and levy fines of the lands with intention to destroy the estate limited to the son, which by extremity of law they may do (as my counsel learned inform me) for that the estate in the lands is limited to the son by a contingent use; which evil practice, if it take effect, will be a remediless disherison to the son and heir of Sir Francis and my child; which will also defraud her Majesty of the wardship appertaining to her by the birth of the son. For prevention of which great extremity I am advised by my counsel to seek relief by petition to the lords of the Privy Council, no other means of relief being left to me. And having none amongst them upon whom I may be bold to depend, but only you, my humble suit is, for your futherance in commendation of this my suit to their lordships, that it may please them to call Gilbert Littleton, one of the surviving feoffees, now in London, before them, and to grant their letters to Percival Willoughby and to George Littleton and Samuel Marrowe, two other feoffees, to enjoin every of them not to do or attempt any act whereby to frustrate the state and use limited by Sir Francis in the fore-mentioned conveyance until the child shall be born, when it may be known whether it be a son or not.—15 December, 1596.
Signed. Seal. 1 p. (47. 29.)
Sir Horatio Palavicino to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596, Dec. 15. Thanks for a favourable report made of him to the Queen. Sends the letter for Massentio Verdiani at the Red Lion in London. Fears that if he delays there he will spend all his travelling money. Is, with Francesco Rizzo, likely to lose by Mr. Bichier, an English merchant, who is bankrupt owing Rizzo 600l., most of which is money of Cecil's father. Begs him to write to Mr. Thomas Scerley to retain for Rizzo any money he may have of Bichier's, with whom he had many dealings for the soldiers' clothing and otherwise.—From my house, 15 Dec. 1596.
Holograph. 1 p. (174. 55.)