Cecil Papers: August 1599, 1-5

Pages 256-273

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 9, 1599. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1902.

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August 1599, 1–5

Sir Francis Godolphin to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 1. Minute of a letter for the despatch of 300 soldiers from Flushing to England for its defence against any hostile attempt of the Spaniards, the letter being signed by the L. Admiral, Mr. Comptroller, L. Chamberlain, Mr. Secretary, L. North, and Sir John Fortescue.—1 Aug., 1599.
1 p. (71. 110.)
[Printed at length in the Report of the Hist. MSS. Commissioners on the manuscripts of the lit. Hon. F. J. Sarile Foljambe, p. 75.]
Jo. Ferne to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 1. I received yesterday from York your letters of the 19 of July. If they had come to me before my journey I would have obeyed your directions, albeit the Council there did entreat me to attend here. I humbly thank you for my Lo. Sheffield, whom you have also commended to her Majesty to be one of the Council in the North, as you signify in your said letters. The calling of him into that Council may draw him again in publicum.
I am greatly bounden for your favour towards me for the precedency before Dr. Bennett in the new commission and instructions (as Mr. Beale and others do report unto me). I will be thankful in the best sort I can for your countenance and regard of me in that and other matters. Concerning the precedency before the Dr. in respect of seniority, the like precedents are in the instructions of Wales, that not only the Secretary, but also other counsellors extraordinary, not being knights, were placed before Dr. Awbrey and Dr. Price according to their seniority in the Council, and Mr. Awbrey was then a judge of the Audience here.—Fleet Street, 1 August, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (71. 111.)
Florence McCarthy to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 1. My experience of Ireland, and assurance that all the rebels there will endeavour to defend my country against me, made me stay here all this while, to see whether I might by any way find means to provide me some furniture wherewith I might do her Majesty service and recover me my country. Amongst others, I dealt with Mr. Dorell and Mr. Foulls, who being also dealt withal by Sir Walter Ralegh, they promised him to furnish me upon assurance to deliver some “beones” in Ireland, for the victualling of her Majesty's forces there, and being by them still put in hope to be furnished, Mr. Foulls doubteth now that there shall be no occasion to send any victuals for Ireland, supposing that the country there would yield enough, wherein I assure your Honour he is greatly deceived, for both the rebels and the soldiers have already almost wasted all the country : wherefore in regard that I rest here in extreme state for want of means to carry me away, and that I understand by Mr. Dorrell and Mr. Foulls that they will presently furnish me, if your Honour do think that there shall be any victuals sent hereafter into Ireland, I am constrained to crave your help that I may obtain your letter to Mr. Foulls signifying that I am one whom you conceive well of and will be glad that he do pleasure me, and that you do not doubt but that there shall be occasion shortly to send some victuals thither.—1st of August, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (72. 2.)
Vincent Skynner to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 1. The privy seal for the pay of the garrison at Plymouth under the charge of Sir Ferdinando Gorges, consisting of the captain, officers and 60 soldiers, doth not rely upon any direction from the Privy Council, but upon the certificate of the said Sir Ferdinando, under his hands, of the numbers and pay due to them, and is so payable from time to time. And he hath accustonrably received the same both in “my L. my father's time” [a correction in Cecil's hand] and since, upon his certificates always.
There is another privy seal for increase of the garrison to the number of fifty more, which remains with my Lord Treasurer, which has reference to the direction of six of the Privy Council, for which you can (sic). But what the cause is that his lordship stayeth the payment of the former privy seal I know not, being favourably inclined to Sir Ferdinando as I have observed, unless it be to stay as much money in the Eeceipt as may be, which to persons of his place and employment, both for his own use and the necessity of pay for the garrison, being at the common rate of 8d. the man, your Honour may judge how requisite and convenient it is. And what his wants are I know not, but he was very desirous before his departure to have received both pay for the time past for the old, and advancement upon the new privy seal for the numbers to be increased.—Westminster, 1 August, 1599.
Holograph, with corrections in Cecil's hand. 1 p. (72. 3.)
Jo. Ferne to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 1. I have attended my Lord Keeper's pleasure concerning the instructions, hoping to have had his answer this day, but he has taken further time till to-morrow, for conference with Mr. Attorney General upon them. So soon as I shall know his resolution I shall bring them to you. It is not well to diminish the jurisdiction of the Lord President, for his Lordship shall find need of a greater authority than the former instructions do comprehend, and, in my simple judgment, my Lord Keeper may do well to yield something to the report of Mr. Hesketh and the rest of the Council, in respect of their knowledge and experience in that government, for the necessary use of those things now added or explained. The commission for Lieutenancy is at the engrossing with the Clerk of the Crown. The commission for the Lord President and Council is likewise drawn by Mr. Attorney and agreed unto this morning by my Lord Keeper, being in all things material accordant to the former, but it cannot be engrossed till the names of the newly inserted Councillors be known. May it therefore please you to send those names, together with the old Councillors, if her Majesty have resolved upon them, ranged according to their places in the commission and instructions, wherein, I suppose, the Lord Willoughby must be placed before the Lord Scroope, and the Lord Sheffield next after the Lord Eure. My desire to hasten the instructions from my Lord Keeper stays me from attending you at this time. Those names being sent, the commission shall be put to the engrossing to be ready by Saturday for signature, by which time likewise the instructions may be engrossed if my Lord Keeper despatch me in any convenient time that I may attend you with them to-morrow night or Friday morning.—Fleet Street, 1 August, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (72. 4.)
Henry, Lord Cobham to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 1. This afternoon I received a letter from the Lords to give directions unto Sir Thomas Wilford for his present repair to the Downs and likewise to Margate, to give directions for the better fortifying of these places, which I have done with as great expedition as possibly I could. For the footbands and horse companies, such directions as formerly I have received already is performed, and upon commandment shall be ready to march unto such places as I shall be directed. And likewise I have written letters unto the gentlemen, that besides the ordinary horse companies, they shall bring as many of their servants well horsed as they can possibly, which I hope shall be duly obeyed. For myself, I were to be at the Court to-morrow to see what commandments I shall receive from Her Majesty and the Lords; though I protest unto you it would much be for my health if I be spared some two, three or four days; but in this I will direct myself as you shall advise me.
The post of Antwerp came this morning, who reports that the enemy are “raysed” from Bommel, leaving only 3,000 men in the sconce they have made there, and that they are gone towards Collein [? Cologne] to meet with the Germanic army, and, as he says, to fight with them. For expectation of galleys coming to Dunkirk, he protesteth there is no such opinion there; and that there is preparation there for them, he offereth to be hanged if it be true. This in no sort I write as “autentiall,” but only thought good to acquaint you therewith, and that in all the letters which be this day come from Antwerp, there is not mention made of any fleet expected to come from Spain, which is both a wonder and to be marked. I wrote yesterday unto you touching Aleblast'er. I pray you move her Majesty that I may be delivered of him. Your loving brother-in-law.—First August, '99.
Holograph. 1 p. (72. 12.)
Stephen Soame, Lord Mayor of London, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 2. I have received direction from the Queen and Council for the appointing of Sir Thomas Gerard as superintendent, and some other captains to take charge of the 3,000 men lately levied within this city, which, forasmuch as it would be a great discouragement to such captains and other officers as are already appointed by myself and the committees, and breed great discontentment in the people of the City (being a thing unusual), I am bold to pray their Lordships that the said captains and officers appointed by the City may be continued till such time as the necessity of the service shall otherwise require that they be delivered to such other captains as you shall think meet.—London, 2 August, 1599.
Holograph. ½ p. (72. 5.)
W. (?) Grange to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 2. Sends the enclosed paper, found in the street by two bricklayers dwelling in the parish of St. Clement's Danes. They supposed it by the fold to be a “handkercher,” but finding it to be a writing, they went to John Harwood, a scrivener, to have it read, who finding it to be of the nature it is, willed them to carry it to John Morley the constable, to acquaint the writer therewith. Acquaints Cecil of the matter, not knowing whether, this being but a copy, the true letter itself be already known, or whether of purpose this and like copies be by evil-affected persons thrown abroad.—St. Giles in the Fields, 2 August, 1599.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Justice Grange. A letter of the pretended Earl of Desmond to the King of Spain found in the streets.” 1 .p. (72. 7.)
The Enclosure :
J. D. [Earl of Desmond] to [the King of Spain].
Most mighty monarch : I humbly salute your imperial Majesty, giving your Highness to understand of the great misery and violent order wherewith we are of long time oppressed by the English nation. Their government is such as Pharaoh never used the like. They content not themselves with temporal superiority, but by cruelty they desire our blood and perpetual destruction, and to blot out the whole remnant of our posterity and our Catholic religion, and swear the Queen of England supreme over the Church. I refer the consideration to your Majesty's high judgment, the rather for that Nero teas far inferior to the Queen's cruelty. Wherefore in respect thereof, light mighty potentate, I yield myself with my followers and retainers unto you, and being also requested by the bishops, prelates and religious men of my country, have drawn my sword and proclaimed wars against them : first for the recovery of Christ's Catholic religion, next for maintaining of my own right, which long time hath been detained from me and my father, who by right succession was lawful heir of the Earldom of Desmond. And for that my uncle Carrolde, the younger brother, took part with the wicked proceedings of the Queen of England, to further the unlawful claim of supremacy usurped the name of Earl, when the wicked English annoyed him, prosecuted wars that he with the most part that held on his side were slain and his country thereby planted with Englishmen. But now, by the just judgment and providence of God, I hate utterly rooted out the malipert “bowes” [? boughs] out of the orchard of my country and have so much prevailed in my proceedings that my dastardly enemies dare not show their faces in any part of my country, but have taken my towns and cities for their refuge and strength, whereas yet they remain our prisoners, who for want of means to assail them, as cannons and powder which my country cannot yield (sic). Weighing these wants, most mighty potentate, I have sent with all humility to your Majesty's Highness, craving the same of your courteous clemency and goodness to assist me in this godly enterprise with some help of such necessaries for the wars as your Majesty shall think meet. And after the quiet of my country, satisfaction shall be made for the same, and myself in person with all my forces shall be ready to serve, your Highness in any other country where your Majesty would command me. And if your Majesty would vouchsafe to send me a competent force of soldiers, I would place them in some of my towns and cities, to remain unto your Grace's disposition until such time as my ability shall make good what your Majesty shall lend in money and munition. I praise the Almighty God that I have done more by His goodness than all the rest of my predecessors, for I have reclaimed all the nobility of these parts oý Ireland under the dutiful obedience of Christ's Church and my own authority; accordingly I have taken pledges and corporal oaths of them never to swerve from the same. And I would have sent them over to your Majesty by this bearer, but that the ship was not of sufficiency nor strength to carry so noble personages : but I will send them whensoever your Highness will please. So that there resteth nothing to quiet this part of the world but your Majesty's assistance, which I do daily expect.—From my Camp, etc. Undated.
Contemporary copy.
Endorsed :—“Letter of the pretended Earl of Desmond to the K. of Spain.” 1 p. (72. 6.) [See Cal. of S.P. Ireland, Elizabeth, p. 11 (ccv. 22).]
T., Lord Buckhurst to Mr. Secretary Cecil.
1599, August 2. Mr. Fowk Grevel was with me this morning for money to discharge the wages of some of Her Majesty's ships newly come in, and, to my great comfort, hath assured me that the ships are presently ready, both for victual and all other preparations incident to the ships themselves, so as nothing now wanteth but mariners to man them. I doubt not but that therein my Lord Admiral will with all possible speed send forth commissions to press them in to all parts, and letters to all justices of peace to cause diligent search in every shire for such as during this press shall withdraw themselves out of one shire or part into another, as their common fashion is in times of press. And Mr. Grevel complaining unto me that divers, after they are impressed, do run away, and therefore prayed my warrant and assistance to punish them, I told them that I would wish there were a letter from all the Lords unto the officers of the Admiralty, giving them full power in such case to punish them by their discretion, which power, he saith, of themselves they have not, for much time is spent, and we also much troubled, while such offenders are brought to us, who in my opinion may more speedily and ought more properly to be punished by the officers of the Admiralty. It may please you therefore, if you think good, to cause such a letter to be made, signed and sent unto them. There is a servant of mine, one Clerk, who hath been in Bomel, and came from thence upon Saturday was se'nnight. He is a good soldier both by sea and land, and a very wise and discreet fellow, and talking with him and sounding what the proceedings of the armies on both sides this summer have been, he doth assure me that the Spanish army hath in manner lain still all this summer, and done nothing but kept themselves close, having been provoked by Count Moris divers times to fight, but never would : so as he doth constantly affirm that they have some other intention not yet discovered. It is given forth that the cause of their so lying still is to attend the coming of the Archduke, but he saith confidently that if they would have employed their forces they might have carried Bomel. They are, saith he, still in Bomel Island, and not departed, but lie still and do nothing. Their number is at the most 20,000, and the States' force about 15,000. He came from thence on Saturday was se'nnight, at which time Sir Francis Vere had no intelligence of coming hither, or drawing any forces with him. He saith that there came a messenger not long since from the Archduke, the bruit of which doth run that the Infant hath had some indisposition of health, for which cause the Archduke deferreth his coming a month longer, so as, as he affirmeth, it is certainly bruited and believed on the other side that the Archduke cannot possibly come till Michaelmas. If you desire to talk with this clerk, who, I do assure you, is a very wise and discreet fellow, and hath been in the camp all this summer, and so can truly tell you the discourse of their proceeding—by the course of which perhaps you may collect some judgment, joined with other things—I will send him to you.—2 August, 1599.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Lord Treasurer.” 3 pp. (72. 8.)
The Archbishop of Canterbury [Whitgift] to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 2. I heartily pray you to know if her Majesty will be pleased to have some special form of prayers to be used in this time of expected troubles. I do think that the same which were used in the year 1588 are also fit for this present occasion and cannot be bettered, a copy whereof I send unto you herewith.—Croiden, 2 August, 1599.
Holograph. ½ p. (72. 10.)
John Blytheman, Mayor, to the Privy Council.
1599, Aug. 2. By this bearer, Denies Durante, I have sent to your Lordships the Cecilian gent., according to your commandment, and have delivered to Durante 7l. towards his charges, praying the same may be there paid him again, with what else you think meet for his expenses in returning to this place.—Plymouth, 2 August, 1599.
Signed. Endorsed :—“Mayor of Plymouth.” 1 p. (72. 11.)
Edward Coke to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 2. I have perused the commissions of oyer and determiner, and conferred with the Lord Keeper on them. Some of the additions we struck out.—2 August, '99.
Holograph. ½ p. (179. 67.)
Sir William Constable to Edward Reynolds.
[1599,] Aug. 2. My friendly tutor, let these lines testify my desire to serve you as your kindness engages me. The last of the last month my Lord returned from the journey into Afalia, which though it was but ten days absence from hence, yet it was so harmful to the rebels, that what with the blows they received, the burning their corn and taking a thousand milch kine, besides passing their greatest strengths whereby they bragged the Queen's army durst not attempt to enter, they are now all come into one humour to resist no further. God grant our Northern journey may be so successful as this other have been, for it is much too soon expected to be begun, for that my Lord must go strong that way and so diminish his strengths which are now to defend these strong rebels, which are in all places much stronger than England imagines them to be. For my part I will hazard myself in his service as much as any.
Honest Henry Mastertonn is killed by accident, coming from Wexford, where he had been merry to his garrison. At Enniscorthy he met in the night with the sheriff of Wexford; so one taking the other for the enemy, Captain Mastertonn charged, and with a staff was hit through the face, of which hurt he is dead. No more hurt, and all the party friends.—Dublin, 2 August.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“99.” Seal. 1 p. (179. 68.)
[The Council of Ireland to the Privy Council.]
1599, Aug. 3. The Lord Lieutenant having made a road into Offalie and the borders of Westmeath, where he has put to the sword sundry of the Occonnors, Omolleys, and other Irish rebels in those parts, burnt their corn and houses, and took a thousand of their cows at the least, as we are informed, returned hither the last of the last month of purpose to put in readiness his preparations for a journey into Ulster, and having the second day following assembled the Council, and propounding his intention to draw to a head such part of her Majesty's army as might be thought convenient for the expedition of ulster, and how Leinster and the other provinces might be left furnished, we of the Council whose hands are subscribed to this letter, took occasion upon that proposition to draw into consideration the general estate of the realm, and how it standeth at this present open in every part to the danger of the rebels, and what might be the hazard of the whole if so great a portion of her Majesty's forces should be converted to Ulster, at a time when necessity, policy and reason require his Lordship to look to the recovering of Leinster, as a service more present and important than the other, inasmuch as it being restored would bring to her Majesty both profit and obedience, where the other was altogether fruitless being reckoned and measured at the best. His Lordship, we must confess, urged much his project for Ulster, as an action honourable for her Majesty, to strike at the root of this great rebellion, begun first there, and since hath multiplied his branches over all parts of the kingdom; alleging withal that he had received a late letter from her Majesty of the 19th of the last, signifying her pleasure for hastening of that service, which his Lordship imparted to us; by some part of the contents whereof, albeit we humbly acknowledge that her Majesty in her rare wisdom hath rightly apprehended this barbarous ungrateful rebel Tiron, and the course which in the rules of honour her Highness thinketh meet should be held with him for his suppression, yet we of the Council, foreseeing on the one side what perilous sequels may grow out of such a resolution to invade Ulster, to the apparent hazard of the whole realm at this time, and comparing, on the other side, the many desperate impediments in the action, and the fruitless ends which in likelihood may fall out as the state now standeth if it should be now attempted, we were bold, his Lordship demanding our opinions, to expostulate somewhat with his Lordship, and, in a matter of so great moment, to use our uttermost reasons and cautions to advise him rather to forbear his purpose for Ulster awhile, than in such a malignity of the time to attempt it, when by the attempt the whole kingdom cannot but be exposed to a most dangerous hazard of confusion. And again, albeit we considered how dangerous it might be for us, being her Majesty's ministers, to give advice in this case, yet having care to avoid as much as in us lay so many dangerous inconveniences as we conceive it could not but occur in the attempt of Ulster if it went forward, we held it our duty to discharge our consciences faithfully, and rather to err on her Majesty's side for the safety of the kingdom, and so to submit ourselves to her Majesty's wonted honourable censure, than not to give our advice to prevent that which in reason we may judge would fall out, to the high offence of her Majesty, and absolute endangering to her estate here. The principal argument we used to his Lordship for the present respiting of the journey of Ulster and putting on foot a prosecution in Leinster, we reduced to these heads. First, all the deputies and other chief commanders at wars having charge here since the beginning of the rebellion in the North, were of mind that there was no better way to break the knot of the rebellions, and strike down thoroughly this proud house of the Oneyls, than to fortify upon the river of Loughfoile, and lie there a strong garrison, which project, and the reasons of it, both they and we have oftentimes transmitted to your Lordships, and, as we have heard, at the despatch of the Lord Lieutenant from thence, it was then again reviewed and allowed for good; and for our parts we see no cause to alter our first minds therein, but are rather confident that without the execution of that plot it will be hard to cut through so great a work but with a great length of time and an excessive consumption of her Majesty's treasure and men. To plant a garrison at Loughfoile at this time, which is to consist upon 3,000 foot and 150 horse at the least, we see the Lord Lieutenant is not able, having regard to answer other requisite services, and his Lordship himself doth affirm no less, having exactly compared the list of all his forces with the use that he is to make of them by necessity in the several provinces, besides other impediments and wants of victuals, which is not possible at this time to be supplied to a proportion requisite for such a garrison : so as that plot failing, which is the mean ground of the whole work, your Lordships may be pleased to consider how far off it will be to bring on the rest, or to make good the enterprise of Ulster, not having a force at Loughfoile. Besides, the Governor of Connaught, who is to play a part in this action, and to that end must make head for Ballasshanon, the hithermost part of Odonell's country, holdeth himself not strong enough with the forces he has to make good that place : and the Lord Lieutenant and we are of mind that unless he be otherwise re-enforced than at this present can be well spared out of the army, he will hardly escape a disaster if he attempt it, so strong doth Odonell, Orworke and Mack Quyre, with the supposed McWilliam and all the fugitives of Connaught, lie upon him : and have dangerously fortified the Curliewes and other straits by the which he must pass. Likewise, the Lord Lieutenant not having means to raise any quantity of beeves to carry on foot with him, nor a sufficient number of carriage horses for portage of his dry victual over land, there cannot but follow a great weakening of the army for want of those helps, and specially lacking food to sustain the soldiers; besides what may fall by mortality and sickness through the malignity of the climate, which giveth no succour for men, but such as they bring with them; an advantage which no doubt the rebels will make use of, and knowing the army to be thin and weak, they may dangerously engage it by the odds of their numbers both of horse and foot, humbly assuring your Lordships of our own knowledge that the Lord Lieutenant shall see far greater numbers of the traitors than he shall bring with him when he is in his best strength : all which do not a little move us : besides the unlikelihood of any fruit by the journey, his Lordship being not able to perform any other matter than to plant garrisons at Armagh and Blackwater, and they to be but as hospitals to keep sick soldiers, and otherwise to little purpose to curb the rebels, not having a force at Loughfoile; but a great distressing of the army by relieving them with frequent convoys. Lastly, by withdrawing so great a part of the army into Ulster, many other places of consequence in the realm, and especially the province of Leinster, shall be left destitute only to a bare defence, not having means to prevent the enemies of their corn, or to preserve the harvest of the subject, which being not taken in the opportunity of the year, will be lost for ever, the want whereof will fall heavily both upon the soldiers and the subjects : besides, those few good subjects that have so long depended upon her Majesty's defence must be driven to run to the rebels, or at least to make their composition with them, where if his Lordship might be stayed from Ulster till Lemster be reduced, he shall not only have a free passage thither, with less difficulties and without danger of diversion, but also he shall have better means to minister to all the other parts of the kingdom than otherwise he can have, if he draw away so great a part of the army. Upon these grounds, with many others, which to avoid the tediousness of a long letter we pretermit, we have presumed to have delivered our opinions to the Lord Lieutenant for deferring his purpose to invade Ulster till with less inconveniences it may be done. And in the meanwhile, concurring all in one consent, we are bold to signify the same to your Lordships, beseeching you to interpret favourably of our doings, and by your honourable motion to favour our defence to her Majesty, towards whom the duty and conscience we have of her Majesty's services, and the preservation of this unfortunate kingdom, hath drawn us in this sort to yield our opinions to his Lordship for staying his journey into Ulster until our reasons, and the considerations of the perils that may ensue to the whole realm, be made known to her Majesty, and her pleasure returned hither for the freeing of his Lordship of her late pleasure to pass into Ulster, if it shall please her Majesty to allow of our reasons given to him therein. Yet in the meanwhile, till her Majesty's answer be signified, we have advised his Lordship, and do find him willing thereunto, not only to put in order his preparations for Ulster according to his weak means, but also to proceed in the prosecution of Leinster, and to give some help to the Governor of Connaught to march to Sligo for the rescuing of Occonnor Sligo, who is now besieged in a castle of his own by the traitor Odonnell, and in danger to fall into his hands, whose example, if he be not relieved, would discourage all the rest of the Irish that depend upon her Majesty's succour. So as if these our opinions be not allowed by her Majesty, yet they cannot hinder the service, for that her Majesty's pleasure may be again returned afore the full preparations may be made for Ulster, which made us the bolder in discharge of our duties to acquaint your Lordships with these our reasons to be imparted with all humility to her Majesty, humbly beseeching you eftsones to haste away with all possible speed her Majesty's resolution; as well for that the Lord Lieutenant, being careful to perform her Majesty's pleasure, is loth to let slip any commodity of time for the purpose of Ulster, as also for that the opportunity of Leinster may be taken; the recovering of which province we humbly assure you is a service of far greater consequence, by many degrees, than the getting of Ulster, though it should be got with little loss and small charge, the one being the heart of the kingdom, and is to bring profit and obedience to her Majesty, and the other a remote “lyme,” a wilderness and desert, where her Majesty hath never had but a small footing, and that got with force, and always kept with charge. And so, having sent herewith a list of all the companies in the army, how and where they are bestowed, to the end you may see what requireth towards this great expedition for Ulster, we humbly take leave.—3 August, 1599.
Headed :—“Copy of tetter from the Council here to the Lords of the Council in England.”
Endorsed by Cuffe, Essex's secretary :—“From the Council of Ireland to the Lords of the Council against the journey into the North.” 3 pp. (72. 13.)
[See the reply to this, Cal. of. S.P. Ireland, Eliz. 1599, pp. 114, 115 (ccv. 131), and the endorsement on a second copy, p. 117.]
Filippo Corsini to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 3/13. The Antwerp Courier arrived to-night and I have letters from Rogers. Niccolao, my man, has been there. I enclose copy of his news touching Spain. The letter you sent me on Saturday I forwarded by way of Middelburg because the Antwerp Courier had left.—London, 13 Aug., 1599.
The Archduke and the Infant are expected at Brussels by the end of August or soon after.
Italian. Holograph. 1 p. (54. 42.)
Charles Frankes to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 3. A post is as yesterday arrived with letters out of Burgundy, how that the Archduke is there with his lady, and that without fail his Altesse will be here the beginning of the next month. Mr. Roger Mannors did desire me I would write unto him the state of the Earl of Westmoreland, unto whom I have written how that the Earl is at this present at the Camp. His marriage with the President's daughter is very doubtful by means of his “malevuillans,” which are here in great credit. The Earl of Bothwell is now here, who, as it is told me, doth mean very shortly to go into Spain and there to sue for a pension.—Anwarp, 3 Aug., 1599.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“Charles Franck.” 1 p. (72. 15.)
The Earl of Essex in Ireland.
1599, Aug. 3. A brief abstract of the Earl of Essex's services in Ireland from the 9 of May, 1599, until the 3 of August following, collected as well out of the journal as other advertisements sent from thence. His Lordship at his coming into Ireland found the Irishy universally combined, her Majesty's army altogether out of heart, the rebels proud with success, and her Highness's forces in amanner besieged. Since his coming thither, in his first journey to Leinster and Munster, he hath beaten the rebels in all places where he hath been : he hath taken in the castles of Athy, Woodstock, and the Grange which were kept against her Majesty to stop the passage into Leix : also Balliragget, the bulwark for the county of Kilkenny : Darinlair, that commanded the river of Shower; beggared Waterford, and all the towns upon it; Cahir, the only famous castle of Ireland, which was thought impregnable, and is the bulwark for Munster and a safe retreat for all the agents of Spain and Rome : in all which places he put in garrisons for her Majesty : he victualled Askeiton, her Majesty's chief house in Munster, which was much distressed by the rebels; forced the pretended Earl of Desmond and the White Knight, archtraitors, to break and burn their own castles upon his approach with her Majesty's army; forced his passage in all places where he came; in all skirmishes commanded the ground he fought upon, and the dead bodies; cleared the way from Limerick to Dublin that four horses may go safely now where an army durst not go it before; he lost not a carriage horse or “garron” by any attempt of the rebel in all this journey, which no army in Ireland could ever say before, yet never any in one journey passed so many paces. The Viscount Mountgarret, lieutenant general to Tirone, Teig Obrian, brother to the Earl of Tomond, the Lord of Cahir, the Lord Roche, Patrick London, James FitzPierce, Thomas Bourk, and many other gentlemen simply submitted themselves to her Majesty.
In his journey to Ophalye he beat the rebels in all places, with loss unto them of their forwardest men, and great advantage to her Majesty's service; burnt their towns and all their corn that was ripe; possessed her Majesty of Balliboy, Tirrel's chief castle; burnt Calloughe, McArti's chief house in his great fastness, which he thought a sure den, and so dispersed and scattered those rogues as they will not easily agree again where to dwell, and how to unite their forces. He took out of their strongest fastness which were held inaccessible by our forces, 1,000 cows, and engaged McCoghalin, a man of good reckoning amongst them, in this action, and made the rebels draw blood one of another. This is the sum of that which his Lordship did in his several journeys, confirmed and averred as well by the journal as by several letters and advertisements from Ireland. And this he performed with as much industry, pains, and care of the advancement of her Majesty's service as was possible for any man, and with continual hazard of his person, giving himself scarce any time of rest.
In the handwriting of Reynolds, Essex's secretary, 1½ pp. (72. 17.)
Draft of same, also in Reynolds' handwriting. 1 p. (72. 16.)
John Blytheman, Mayor, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 3. I sent the Council a note of things required of me by Sir Ferdinando Gorges' lieutenant; whereupon the Council commanded me to furnish him with what should be needful for the fort and island, at the Queen's charges. But as, since his coming down, there are far greater matters demanded, I acquaint you therewith, lest hereafter the same should be thought overmuch. What hereafter will be demanded more I know not. I will accomplish the same so far as I may, hoping there shall be order given to pay for the same, so as no part thereof be laid upon this poor town, considering how far we are charged otherwise by making divers necessary defences for the harbours and other places.—Plymouth, 3 August, 1599.
Signed. 1 p. (72. 18.)
The Enclosure :
A note of such provisions as are delivered by the Mayor of Plymouth unto Sir Ferdinando Gorges towards the furnishing of the Fort and Island; divided into (a) Spars, deals, &c., for the building of lodgings and for other necessary uses; (b) Ordnance, shot and other necessaries thereunto belonging; (c) Victuals and necessaries for the Island.
Also, note of such provisions as are further required by Sir Ferdinando Gorges.—Plymouth, 3 August, 1599. 1 p. (72. 19.)
John Blytheman, Mayor, to the Earl of Nottingham, Lord High Admiral.
1599, Aug. 3. By virtue of a commandment from the Earl of Bath, I have impressed, within the town of Plymouth, for her Majesty's ships at Chatham, certain mariners and sailors, who departed hence the first of this instant, whose names, together with their press and conduct money which they have received of me (21l. 17s.) shall appear in a paper enclosed; praying you to take order with the Treasurer of the Navy whereby I may be repaid.—Plymouth, 3 August, 1599.
Signed. 1 p. (72. 20.)
Sir Anthony Poulett to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 3. It pleased the Queen at my departure from the Court, when I signified my desire to repair to my charge, to command in regard of my health yet to stay some time in these parts for the full recovery thereof. So being now at my poor house in Somerset, and being advertised from the deputy lieutenants of this county that they have received letters from the Council to put all the forces of this county in readiness, in regard of the great preparations of a fleet of Spaniards expected at Brest and likely to fall out upon some parts of this realm, I account it the part of every honest and dutiful subject to be forward in this just defence. Albeit, if any occasion of service should be here, I should reckon it a great honour to adventure my life, yet, in regard of my charge of the Isle of Jersey, I think myself in duty specially tied to that place, and if the Queen and Council think my presence there requisite, I will neglect my health and all other things and repair thither. I have despatched a messenger to my lieutenant to advertise him of these things, and I know he will not be slack in his duty to put the poor islanders in the best order he can. But their strength cannot preserve them without assistance from hence if they should be attempted, and if the isles have no succour till they shall need, it will be too late for them to send hither for it. What the estate and wants of the forts are, I did lately advertise the Council, which still continuing, my suit is you will have a favourable conceit of those poor isles, and of myself in the offer of my service where I may be thought best able to do most. My presence cannot secure the isle without more help.—3 August, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (72. 21.)
Humfrey Flynt to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 4. All your hawks be flying, but not come to any flying worth the commending; but afore Mr. Amise be ready to come up I shall see what is in them, which will be a fortnight before he shall despatch his business.—Stamford, 4 August, 1599.
Holograph. Endorsed : “Your Honour's servant.” 1 p. (72. 22.)
H. Cuffe to Edward Reynolds.
1599, Aug. 4. This despatch of his Lordship's [Essex] is very sudden, and I was forced after the principal copies were made to use Mr. Temple's assistance in making some transcripts. By his Lordship's commandment I used a little cunning in getting from the Secretary a copy of the Council's letter to the Lords of the Council in England. I fear me there are in it many errors, but such as you will easily amend. Since our last to you we have received from you two despatches, one from Fr. Greene, the other by Mr. Mynne's man. I am sometimes threatened by his Lordship to be sent into England, there to argue and apologise for his virtue and true worth against those who so maliciously and sycophant-like detract from his honourable and noble endeavours. The times are so bad and the humours surly with you there, that I fear rather than wish the journey. Notwithstanding jacta est alea. I would rather lose with him than gain with his opposites.—Dublin, 4 August.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“1599.” 1 p. (72. 23.)
W. Cholmley to Edward [Reynolds], Secretary to the Earl of [Essex].
1599, Aug. 4. I know you have better advertisements of our proceedings in Ireland than is there known unto me, neither indeed do I observe the particularities of anything, but I can say we have gone thorough paces, we have victualled forts, we have taken castles, we have set houses on fire, we have placed garrisons and have made many knights, and yet you in England say we have done nothing but gone a progress, and that you would have done as much with 200 men. But if they that are of that opinion were here with 5,000 and gone the ways that we went, the enemies would fight with them, and if they did not behave themselves well, they might lose their heads. In England there is no rebels spoken of but Terron, but he is like a tree that to one body hath many branches which is spread over all Ireland, for there are some that march among us that, where they find opportunity, will as soon cut our throats as the rebels that fight against us. We have gone two journeys. The first journey we provided victuals for a fortnight, and stayed forth two months. The last journey my Lord was out but 10 days, and the officers did leave me at home because they do reserve me for a worse journey, which I think will be very shortly for the North, notwithstanding divers are of opinion that it is not best for my Lord to go to the North this year, because he must go thither either with too small forces, or leave all the rest of the country to the spoil of the enemy. I do wish we had stayed in England, for howsoever it go with us in Ireland, it doth go well with you in England. And if in Ireland our actions succeed well, they keep us poor, lest we grow great; and if it succeed ill, then are we overthrown, horse and foot. I must needs say, in the last supplies you sent many good soldiers out of England, and amongst the rest your old acquaintance Wm. Braban was one, beside many more of like fashion. As touching the state of our house, we are at least 400 persons, beside 40 or 50 persons that sit at my Lord's table. Our expenses betwixt £35 and £40 per diem in meat and drink, beside the charges of the stable, servants' wages and liveries, and money that flies daily out of my Lord's purse, which I do esteem to be as much as the charge of meat and drink. Considering the prices of provisions that have been heretofore in Ireland, they are now at a very dear rate, a cow 60s., a mutton 10s., a veal 20s., a hen 12d., a chicken 6d., a lb. butter 6d., a pig 2s. 6d., a bushel of wheat 4s., a field pigeon 4d.; so that I pray God we may return conquerors, for sure I am we shall return beggars. And because I will not trouble you too long with an idle letter I will come unto the matter.
My Lord has bestowed on me the office in the Tower which Henry Jacob lately held. Details various proceedings which he asks Reynolds to take in this matter on his behalf. Sends his commendations to Mr. Pitchford and Mr. Wm. Thomas, and commends “Clariquothatos” to “Coleri quothatos.”—Dublin, 4 August.
Holograph. Endorsed :—“1599.” 2 pp. (72. 24.)
Che. Harris to the Privy Council.
1599, Aug. 4. Upon the receipt of your letters to the Earl of Bath for imprest of mariners, wherein you required my service, Lord Bath took order for the imprest of all such mariners as were on the North coast of Devon, and myself likewise for all the South coast, which mariners are now so onwards in their way as I verily think they will be at Chatham within this six days, and some of them before, for they were presently hasted away in every place as they were pressed. Some part of the monies disbursed for their prest and conduit of this South part, has been defrayed by the Mayors of Plymouth and Dartmouth for those places, and the rest by myself, whereof you shall have a perfect note, and of the names and numbers of mariners sent I have likewise, with the rest of the lieutenants and Vice-Admiral of Cornwall, hastened away such mariners, which I think will likewise be at Chatham within this 7 or 8 days.—Plymouth, 4 August, 1599.
[P.S.]—Such news as was here brought in, by a Scots merchant and an English passenger, of the enemies, Sir Fardinando Gorges has already advertised you. We have not since heard of any other.
Holograph. 1 p. (72. 25.)
Sir H. Wallop to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 5. Has of late received the Queen's warrant for bringing over his father's officers and books into England, for which he acknowledges himself bound to Cecil, as having procured the Queen's signature thereof. Proceedings taken as to Mr. Antoin's debt. This country yields no pleasing argument whereof to write.—Dublin, 5 August, 1599.
Holograph. 1 p. (72. 27.)
Captain Francis Stafford to Sir Robert Cecil.
1599, Aug. 5. Trustworthiness of the bearer, Mr. Wattson.
The plot of my Lord Lieutenant's journey fell out to be very honourable, for his Honour burned and spoiled all Phercawle, a country possessed by the Omoloyes, and took a prey of cows. My Lord was fought withal, but received little hurt. In this journey there was a principal man of the Oconnor's killed by my Lord's forces. Captain Thomas Lea devised and set down a profect either that he would bring to submit themselves Rorye Omoore, Phelem McPhewghe (and) Dannell Spannyoghe; either, else, that he would make a great spoil of their cows; and for the honour of this service and the better effecting of this matter the marshal was drawn to Reban, Captain Lea's house, with the command of 1,000 foot and horse. The marshal in a skirmish received a shot in his thigh, and there were few cows taken. The traitors stand upon these terms, that they must all follow Tyrone's counsel, for that they were all tied by their oaths unto him. The last of July my Lord Lieutenant returned unto Dublin. What farther his Honour intendeth is as yet unknown, but by the general voice of the captains and his followers, there is both expected and purposed a journey into the North; but, under correction, my opinion is, the time of the year being so far spent, and other causes and impediments of greater importance duly to be considered, his Honour's designs were better foreborne than now to be put in execution.—Dublin, 5 August, 1599.
Holograph. 2 pp. (72. 28.)
Vicente de Colmo to Luiz Vasquez.
1599, Aug. 5/15. I have been hoping to write to you, but found no messenger between Santa Maria and Lisbon. The fleet is keeping away from the plague. At Lisbon there has been a great pestilence; more than forty thousand persons dead; so that the city is almost deserted. I went there by order of the Adelantado. There was nothing like it but Cadiz after the sack. The Council and the Count of Portalegre left the city for the fleet. The other principal people were in various parts of the kingdom. In the castle were a few soldiers; many of them had died; there were plenty of provisions, but no one to eat them. The enemy have landed at the Canary islands. The Adelantado has gone into Corunna where the royal fleet is, with four galleys, leaving us behind in the Islands of Bayona. To day we were unable to reach the port of Mugia and put into Nuestra Señora della Barca, and on her day the armada collected there. The Adelantado has now left us with Don Juan de Padilla his son; twelve galleons and a ship of Biscay have arrived at Corunna.
Spanish. Holograph. 2 pp. (72. 78.)
Don Pedro Velasco to —.
1599, Aug. 5/15. Complaining of his stay in a galley not far from Corunna. It is supposed that on arriving there, they will start, no one knows whither.—Mugia, 15 August, 1599.
Spanish. Holograph. 2 pp. (72. 80.)
Sebastian de Pastrona to Juan de Pastrona, his father.
1599, Aug. 5/15. We are now come to this port of Murgia, after sailing past Lisbon and all the ports of Gallicia. Here we wait to go to Ferrol. The Adelantado reached that port a week ago with four well equipped galleys. I can tell you nothing sure of the war or of our destination, although it is said we are to go for Ireland. If we make no voyage this year I will write to you all that happens. I commend myself to you and my friends.— Murgia, 15 August, 1599. Spanish. Holograph.
Endorsed by Cecil :—“This shewes their purpose to go for Ireland.” 1 p. (72. 83.)