Elizabeth: December 1577, 26-31

Pages 403-440

Calendar of State Papers Foreign, Elizabeth, Volume 12, 1577-78. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1901.

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Table of contents

December 1577, 26-31

The burgesses of the city of Brussels, in order to promote the arrival and reception of the Archduke Matthias, and to show that the delay is not due to them, but to the very persons, belonging to your assembly here, who do not do the duty required of them to give satisfaction to the burgesses, but rather to the contrary, by their evil intentions preventing any decision from being arrived at upon the burgesses' complaints, and also calumniating the good endeavours of the said burgesses, saying that they mix themselves up too much, and more than comports with their business, in public affairs, and suchlike improper and misleading expressions—wherein it is certain that the cause of the republic in the action of the people ; and in order that none of you may think that this proceeds from lightness or overweening on the part of the burgesses, you shall understand, gentlemen, that although those of Brussels, as a frontier town, are the most concerned, yet having the advantage of the presence of your assembly in this city, where the commonalties of the other provinces and cities are absent, and as this is a popular matter touching all good patriots— you will understand that those of Brussels speak for the generality of good patriots elsewhere ; whereof if any desire proof at his own expense, let them be sent for, and let us await the arrival of the burgesses of Louvain, Antwerp, Bois-le-Duc, Ghent and the other towns, and we shall see the effect which shall ensue. Those too who demand the signature, about which so many difficulties are made for us, note well how just is this cause, and of how great importance to the cause this matter is. Having presented their complaints in writing, the burgesses beg that it may please your lordships to give your decision in writing, for the greater security and satisfaction of both parties. Further, we, and all other good patriots of this assembly desire nothing save the speedy reception of the Archduke, to remedy the troubles of our poor fatherland, and by the help of one and the other to meet and overthrow our enemy. Thus leaving behind the ill-affected to the cause, with their sinister opinions, we beg your lordships promptly to deal with, as has been often requested, and hitherto not without danger delayed, the complaints above-mentioned, to the repose and contentment of all good patriots. Consider, too, that looking to the necessity in which our poor country stands, its good government requires that it should have a head wise in deliberation, prompt in resolve, valiant in combat, well-tried, not urged by ambition, fear, or need, but of a single zeal for the cause. If no one could be found perfect in all these parts we should take the one who approaches it most nearly ; wherein consider, gentlemen, if those have not failed who have called in so young a prince as the Archduke to be the Governor-General of these countries at a time of so great danger and difficulty—too great a charge, every understanding man will say, for a prince not yet of age. Wherefore, as we have gone so far with the Archduke to the point of receiving him as Governor, it is necessary to have a Lieutenant-General, a lord of authority, and qualified as above. For this the burgesses think there is no lord in all Europe better fitted than the Prince of Orange, as is also the opinion of all the wisest men. For which reason they have in their complaint requested that the said prince should be appointed lieutenant-general to the Archduke, in the event of his reception. To this they still adhere, notwithstanding that some preposterously pretend that there can be no lieutenant of a lieutenant ; for we see that the fiscal, who represents his lord, employs a lieutenant in Brabant ; and in an important case like this it ought to be allowed, to make up for the Archduke's youth. And the Prince of Orange has already been appointed by your lordships special governor of Brabant, for causes very pregnant and peremptory, which are still in force, and increase from day to day, making it necessary that he remain in that post ; and in pursuance of the election and decision of the nine nations of this city, and burgesses of Louvain, Antwerp, and Bois-le-Duc, who have never withdrawn, nor consented to the Prince's removal, but desire that he should remain governor, and without their consent no change can be made, nor can the Archduke even be admitted, since it is they who have got to be governed, and to receive their governor. In the event of their agreement, they should settle the household of the Archduke before admitting him ; composing it of natives of the country, Flemings (thiois) and others, from Brabant, Flanders, Artois, &c., and to take note of this, since it is we who have to be governed. As in the days of Queen Mary of Hungary, when Governess, though she brought several Germans with her, she retained only one in her household, her fourrier, the others being natives of the country. This was in time of peace ; much more then in time of war. Please also to come to a decision respecting suspected persons ; and herein remember the warning of the Queen of England, that the countries will never be well governed till the Estates, the Abbeys, the convents, the magistrates, are purged of bad patriots. Praying you above all to make good and brief expedition, that public affairs may be furthered and brought into better order with restoration of all ancient privileges, and abolition of all ordinances, placards and acts to the contrary. Copy. Fr. 3 pp. [Holl. and Fland. IV. 51.]
Dec. [probably 28.]
K. d. L. 183.
I have written four several letters since I heard from you. Your last, saying that I have now received by Whitechurch [i.e., No. 530], and another in favour of Southarke received five or six days since, was of Nov. 22 ; which, relating to former letters sent by Mr. Chester and miscarried, contained little that required particular answer. Now I understand that the Marquis is dispatched well satisfied ; the news of which is the more welcome here, that the contrary was, upon the negotiation of Gate [Gastel] both feared and reported. He is still on the way, and as I hear, expected to-day at Bruges and to-morrow at Ghent, whither the Prince is to-day set forth. The Marquis, now he is returned, can do much to advance matters, having the means to do good with his brother, and others that have been hitherto noted as hinderers, and I hope that as he has promised to employ himself honestly therein, he will honourably perform it. His good entreaty in England generally, and by your Lordship particularly has, I doubt, not done him much good. To-morrow I repair toward Brussels to await his coming, "that we may together with all our force push at the wheel." The Prince meanwhile has sent to beg the States to hasten this succour, wherein if they follow their accustomed slackness the people are determined to interpose themselves. Within few days after the Marquis coming to Brussels, we shall perceive what train it will take. Meanwhile the Prince has asked me to solicit the speedy preparation of them, whose number he could wish augmented, if the States approved. For our horsemen, he thinks the lances armed after the manner of Italy better and more serviceable than our light horse after the nature of the Borderers ; but on all these details you shall hear from him at length when the States have made up their minds. I see nothing to hinder the success of it unless it be the treaty of peace, which the Emperor is minded once again to propose through Count 'Swartberg' and the Commissioners employed here in the last negotiation, whom the Count awaits at Collen, to join with the Bishop of Liége and the deputies of Cleve ; "but I find very few of opinion that this is other than a stratagem to rock these men asleep while Don John waketh," that he may more easily surprise them. Yet we have many here that are glad of such an occasion to entertain the old practices, and compass the division of the provinces. The Prince takes in good part your counsel touching the Marquis, which he will put in practice if it may do any good, "not-withstanding that his constancy be much suspected, knowing the natural imperfection of that house." He has been lately named to be one of the new Council, but the people are opposed to him and others, of whom they are not very sure. Champagny being one of that number is detected to have done so evil offices that he has within these three or four days been forced to fly from Brussels, and what is become of him I cannot yet hear. Among other points to have solicited first the Duke of Aerschot, and failing with him, the Count Egmont, to declare himself head of the Catholics, and take arms against the professors of the contrary ; with whom likewise not prevailing he offered to take it on himself. These things being known to the people have bred some discontent about the naming of him and others to the Council, and the Archduke is therefore hitherto unsworn. In this confusion of things the French profit. Mondoucèt, who is employed for the Duke of Alençon, never followed his old practice with greater heat, sparing no fair offers to advance his party, and it is much suspected that Count Lalaing and others are assuredly won. We have news that 22 companies of French, said to be sent down by Monsieur under the charge of Bussy d'Amboise, are marching to the frontier of Hainault ; but the intent is diversely judged of. Of the state of Don John, this bearer, who lately came from Namur, and the particulars sent herewith, can much inform you. I send withal a note of the several regiments and forces of the States, that you may judge of both. The Prince has asked me to send you his letter herewith, by whom you may understand the cause of his silence hitherto. He has sent with them divers particular letters, because he would not have them delivered without your privity ; although they contain nothing but compliments. Within four or five days I think to write more at length.—In haste, Antwerp, the of Dec. 1577. P.S.—Within these four days arrived five or six companies of Scots, above the number brought by Balfour, which the States are very loth to entertain. Their captain is one Ogliby. Draft. Endd. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fland. IV. 52.]
Dec. 546. A number of NOTES and MEMORANDA as to the forces on either side in the Low COUNTRIES and their disposition.
(1.) Bandes d'ordonnance of the Duke of Aerschot, M. de Lalain, M. de Rumeghen, M. d'Arenberg, M. de Bossu, the Marquis of Havrech, the Count of Egmont, M. de Meerbeke, the Seneschal of Hainault, M. d'Evere, M. de Ville, the Viscount of Ghent, M. de Bailleul, M. d'Oignies :—(510 lances). Light horse : the companies of M. de Priescau, M. de Villers, M. de Fresnoy, M. de Voisin, Jehan Battista Norchini, Mornaulx, M. de Montigni, M. de Champagny, M. d'Egmont, M. de Goignies, M. de la Marche :—(1,100 horse). Reiters : the company of M. de Groningen :—(400 horse). Fr. 3 pp
(2.) Names of such as are with Don John. M. de Hierges, M. de Floyon, M. de Haultepenne, M. de Billy dit Robles, M. de Ruysbrouck, the Count of Reux, the Count of Faulquenberge, M. de Licques, M. de Rossignol, M. de Baulx, M. de Marle, M. de Somincourt, M. de Warlouzel, "le sieur de Herwic Anglois" [Qy. Harvie], Councillor d'Assonville, Councillor Fonck, d'Overloepe the usher, Secretaries Berty, Scharenberge, Vasseur, Lalloo, and Brool, Octavio Gonzaga, Mondragon. Endd. by L. Tomson. Fr. 1 p.
(3.) Number of the colonels and regiments of infantry belonging to the Estates. M. de Bossu (20 ensigns), M. de Mountegny (10), M. de Capres (10), Champagny (10), M. de la Garde (6), M, de Bours (6), Count of La Marce (10), M. de Hèze (8), Bersell (10), Egmont (10), La Motte (3), the Count of Holland (35). Contingents of eight and six will be raised to ten. In Holland, besides garrisons, are 25 ensigns. The Scots who have come are 12 ensigns, and we think they are going to be increased by 10 more. Though the Estates think they have this number of ensigns, it is reckoned that the companies are not full.
M. de Havré (100 horse), the Duke of Aerschot (100), M. de Goingny (100), the Viscount of Ghent (100), Count Lalaing (100), Mermau (150), Montigny (50), Champagny (50), M. de Bossu (50). (fn. 1)The bandes d'ordonnance, 1,200 lances, M. de 'Cruninge' 400, the Prince of Orange 400, (fn. 1)Schenck 1,000, (fn. 1)Havre 1,500, (fn. 1)Count of Zwartzenborch 2,000, (fn. 1)Cazemirus 3,000. Total, 10,300 horses. Those marked have not yet come into existence.
Governors for the Estates of the Low Countries.
Brabant—The Prince of Orange, provisionally. Flanders—Before the troubles was governed by the Count of Rœulx, who for having withdrawn with Don John was deprived, and it was given by the Estates to the Duke of Aerschot, who afterwards resigned it, so that now it is without a governor ; though he has not returned his patent.
Namur—M. de Barlemont.—At the disposal of Don John. Luxembourg—Count Mansfelt.—At the disposal of Don John.
Arthois—The Viscount of Ghent.
Haynault—Count Lallaing.
Holland—His Excellency.
Zealand—His Excellency.
Utrecht—His Excellency.
West Friesland—His Excellency.
Lille, Douay, Orchie—M. de Rassinghen, prisoner at Ghent.
Friesland—Baron de Ville, brother to M. de Hoochstraet.
Tournay and Tournesis—The Constable of Haynault.
Mechlin—At present no one.
Valenciennes—M. de Famar governs, without the title of governor.
Guelder—No one.
On the frontiers of Haynault :—
Vennes—M. de Boussy.
Philippeville—M. de Florenc.
Charlemont—Under Don John.
Landresy—M. de Cure.
The citadel of Cambray—M. de Jussy.
Chanry—M. de Gougny.
Frontiers of Artois :—
"Beaupaume"—M. de Steenkerk.
"Petune"—M. de la Tilloye. (fn. 1)
Herre—M. de Meurbeeck. (fn. 1)
St. Omer—M. de Runninghe. (fn. 1)
Gravelines—M. de la Motte.
Flanders :—
Carthuyse—M. d'Ogny. (fn. 1)
Brabant :—
Maestricht—No one, but M. de Bersele is superintendent.
Lierre—Captain Cetvelt is superintendent.
Endd. in French by Burghley's secretary : Dec. 1577, &c. Fr. 3 pp.
(4.) Don John's Colonels.
Ready. Peter Ernest, the old Count of Mansfield.
400 horse. Count Charles of Mansfelt. Count Barlamont.
The Count of Wessenberg. Count Hierge his sons.
Count of Rirgrave. Count Meghem
Count Barney. M. de Floyon
400 Baron Bassonpierre of Lorraine. M. de Haultepenne
The Count of Mandershet. M. de Billy.
Count Arenberg. Maria Corduina.
Count of Reux. M. de Licques.
Colonels of reiters :—
400 Otto Platte.
Caspar Schoneberg, formerly marshal of the Germans in France.
Dits de Schoneberg.
M. d'Elst, nephew of the Elector of Treves.
Christopher Schlaigre.
The French King's ambassador.
Duke Enric of Brunswick has 3 ambassadors at Namur, a doctor, his secretary, and one gentleman, who at Marche under colour of playing great wagers early and late at tennis, haunted Don John at 11 at night and 3 in the morning.
Colonel Elst was sent from him to Serin to solicit and practise for that which he hath effected.
M. de Billy has been employed in the country of La Marche to levy horsemen, and has given 5 crowns upon every horse.
Davison's writing. Fr. and Eng. Endd. in Fr. ½ p. The wholepp. [Holl. and Fland. IV. 53.]
Dec. 28.
K. d. L. x. 185.
Same information as in 545. "Of three several dispatches which I have of late sent, I do not hear that you have received one. The cause I impute to the wind, which has kept the post on this side 15 or 16 days." "By Whitechurch I understand the Marquis is returned well satisfied both for his negotiation and particular entreaty. . . . The Prince is glad to hear of the good reputation he has left behind him, and that he is in so good a way to become a Protestant, though he fears that humour be spent in passing of the sea." Add. Endd. by L. Tomson. 1½ pp. [Ibid. IV. 54.]
Dec. 28. 548. Draft of the last. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 5a.]
Dec. 29.
K. d. L. x. 189.
I mentioned yesterday the coming of Bussy d'Amboise and his companies towards the frontier. This is confirmed this morning, and it is given out that they are sent to assist the States, but the enterprise is suspected to aim at some other mark. The intelligence which the Duke has in Hainault and Artois makes the loyalty of that corner much doubted. In any case, this practice is judged to be accompanied with danger, for if he offer to assist the States and they refuse him, he may take part against them, and if they accept him they incur no less peril. This falls out at such a time as will not a little confound opinions here ; Don John being ready to assail them and they unprepared to make head against him. It is said that in Burgundy and Champagne "there hovereth" 6,000 or 7,000 men, destined for the service of Don John ; and though it is known to the States, they proceed with their accustomed confusion. Count 'Swartberg' is come from Collen, and appointed to be here to-night or to-morrow with the Archduke, and the rest of the commissioners are said to be likewise on the way. On my arrival at Brussels, whither I am even now setting out, you shall hear again.—Antwerp, 29 Dec. 1577, "scribbled in haste." Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 55.]
Dec. 29. 550. Draft of part of the above. "It is more than time they had the succour which they have been so long waiting on." Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 55a.]
I am much "beholding" to you for your friendly remembrance of me, with such news as that country yields, which are not to be neglected on our part, but carefully to provide for all events. I cannot requite you with anything from here, save to assure you of the good liking of your service where you are. Your friends here are in health, saving Mr. Killigrew, of a better mind than ability of body. I see it must fall to his lot or mine to make a journey into Scotland, where matters are not falling out as we wish. Mrs. Beale is brought to bed of a son, no small comfort to the mother, and great joy I am sure to the father, when he, to whom I pray you deliver this letter, [hears] as I hope of the good news. I hope, though I do not find it in your letter, that my good Gossip is in good health, with both your little sons, to whom I pray you make my hearty commendations.—London, 29 Dec. 1577. P.S.—If this bearer return, please to employ him. He is one whom you may trust. If Mr. Beale come not by you, pray keep the letter with you. Add. 2 pp. [Ibid. IV. 56.]
Dec. 30. 552. As to the ARREST of SHIPS.
. . . . Provided also that the two English ships which are empty, and now lying at Brouage, be released within two months. This being done and caution given, the merchants of Dieppe shall have their vessels released at once.—Hampton Court, 30 Dec. 1577. Names of the two English ships still detained by M. de Lansae, and their owners :—The Immanuel of Plymouth, owned by P. Sylvester ; the bark Shelton of Yarmouth, owned by Kate Tomson. In writing of L. Tomson. Fr. 13 ll. [For. E. B. Misc. II.]
Dec. 31. 553. EXTRACT from a LETTER written to the ESTATES of the Low COUNTRIES.
Letters from Venice of the 20th inst. say that our King has agreed with the Genevois [Qy. Genoese] for 5 millions in gold, to accommodate Don John in the present war, by exchange or otherwise ; and that his Majesty has almost compelled them to accept the contract. Also that he has taken all gold and silver from the merchants of Spain, having it all minted, to send into Flanders. The kingdom of Naples contributes a large sum, and 1,500 Spanish soldiers forthwith, who are ready to embark any day for Genoa, Lombardy, and so to Flanders. At Genoa are expected 4 Spanish galleys with 7,000 crowns, to be sent to his Highness at Luxembourg. The Prince of Parma is to start shortly for Flanders, and the Duchess his mother will follow him soon. On her arrival that lady is to offer to the Estates the olive-branch of peace, with full instructions as to his Majesty's pleasure, if they will accept her as Governess. If not, her son will be there to offer the sword. The Pope is said to have granted his Highness such a contribution as the powers of the Church allow. On the 20th of this month the palace of St. Mark's at Venice was half burnt down. The damage is estimated at more than a million of gold, and when our messenger started the fire was not wholly extinguished, nor was it known how it had been caused. We shall hear by our next messenger on Saturday. The last thing that they write from Venice is that Don John has written to the Emperor, earnestly requiring him to write to his brother Matthias not to accept the conditions of the Estates, nor the government either until word comes from his Majesty from Spain. That is all that we hear by the present and last posts from Italy. We know as a fact that the good Emperor is taking a great deal of trouble for the pacification of Flanders, and since we hear that his Majesty's brother has been received as governor we thank God therefore. We hope that our Princes of the Empire will bear a hand in this pacification ; for it must be understood that Germany will be no less ruined than your Low Countries if the King persists in continuing the war. As for the 2,000 horses for the artillery and the ammunition which I mentioned eight days ago, there has been much difficulty in getting them, but more in respect of the exeen gelt [?]. The millions about which they write from Italy are far to seek. And as this year ends to-day, and to-morrow we enter 1578, I beg your Lordships to excuse any failure in my duty during the past year. To conclude this my last of 1577, I will tell you of some good news, as it seems to me. This day I went to speak on other affairs with MM. Marco and Jehan Focquer [? Fugger]. They have received letters from Spain of Nov. 16 ; and with a smiling visage they told me that his Majesty is content that the Archduke should be governor, and that in this he is opposed to all those of his Council. But he would like his Excellency to take two or three councillors chosen by himself. If the Estates, after deliberation, can meet his Majesty in this matter, peace will be as good as made. These gentlemen say also that the Estates ought not to sleep over this matter, if peace is to come soon. Therefore I entreat your noble lordships to take it in hand. I hear of another good personage who had seen a letter written by the King's own hand to the Emperor, which had been sent to the Landvogt Ilsingh, primary councillor to the Emperor, resident in this town, to be forwarded to the Imperial Court.—From the accustomed place [? Augsburg], this last day of 1577. Copy. Fr. 4 pp. [Holl. and Fland. IV. 57.]
The Queen having occasion to dispatch me to the Elector your Highness's nephew, has also given me commission to greet you. She greatly desires to continue to the present Elector the friendship which she had towards his father your Highness's late brother, and begs that you will foster the same in the minds of your nephews ; doing what lies in you, by your advice and assistance, to prevent any separation between the German churches and the foreign, whereby it may come to pass that the peace of the Empire will be broken up and other states and churches be condemned undeserving and unheard, without lawful trial. Which is contrary to Christian charity and the legal methods of procedure hitherto in use in the Church and Empire. Copy. Endd. by Robert Beale. Latin. ¾ p.
After Sept. 14. 555. MEMORANDUM on the SUBSIDY to DUKE CASIMIR.
There is imminent danger to these countries from the seasoned forces of Don John. It is well known that he feels sure of being able to obtain fresh men and fresh supplies from France ; for it is from that side rather than from Spain that war is being made. All the world knows that the greater number of Don John's troops are French, that his best depôt of provisions is Mézières, that letters of exchange to supply him with money are reaching Paris every day, that artillery for his support is ready at Metz and other places on the French frontier. There is the less doubt about it since it is certain that the King of France has made peace with his subjects to this very end, being unable simultaneously to fight with them and render help to Don John, necessary as he considers this. He can always, as he has hitherto done, fall upon his subjects afresh when he sees a good time to do so ; while if he had let the affairs of these countries continue to prosper (which would have been a very bad lesson for his subjects), and had done nothing to hinder help from England, of which he was extremely jealous, it is quite certain that afterwards he would have come too late. To set against all these advantages, we see in these countries nothing but irresolute people ; a populace liable to be waged by the first surprise of a battle lost or a town taken ; too many jealousies, distrusts, enmities ; too few captains, and no resources at all ; failure to make a right use of the goodwill of neighbouring princes, and especially of the counsels of the Prince of Orange, the good effect of which is hindered by many causes. But granting that the sick man has the fault of not liking to take the medicine necessary for his case, it behoves those who love him and have an interest in his health, to treat him as the good physician, who often makes his patient take the medicine which he has disdained, as though it were something yet unthought of. It is evident that the remedy for the evils under which these countries are suffering must be brought from without. For obvious reasons France is no good. Germany might help, but she is mercenary. England is in every way fit and necessary. The Queen knows the reasons which induced her to offer help ; she must not withdraw when she sees that the fruits of it may turn out as she desires. She alone can provide against the evil which she foresees, and put France and those countries on a grand footing, with such results as she wishes, especially their obligation to her. Her Majesty has every confidence in Duke Casimir, and may feel her resources safe in his hands, for the levying of a large force of Swiss reiters, and arquebusiers, with which, in addition to his own subjects, he would fall on the King of France. The Duke has sufficient credit with the Churches of France to make them take up arms when the time comes ; they have only too much cause every day. In this way the King of France would be compelled to recall his own forces, and avail himself of the help he is giving to Don John. He saw before the peace that he could not do both things at once ; and Don John would be left with a few Spaniards, Italians, and Burgundians. It would then be easy to defeat him and make him accept any terms. In this way her Majesty would do whatever is important for the maintenance of peace, would prevent the authority of the Spaniards from ever returning to these countries, and the King of France from availing himself of the peace to attempt something against her on the first opportunity. But this means will be useless if active steps be not taken to anticipate the efforts of Spain, and prevent these people from concluding a disadvantageous peace. Her Majesty has all the more reason to take this view that she can thus make two hits with one stone. She can make with the Duke, and by his interposition, with the Churches of France, such arrangements as are adapted to the purpose, and will achieve her ends better in these countries. For even were she to send them 6,000 harquebusiers of her own subjects, these would be soldiers of more courage than training in war ; and would be of little hindrance to Don John, with his fine troops and power of reinforcing them from France. Again, if she give them the 100,000l. which they ask for, they are so far in debt to their armies that the sum would only wipe out one or two months' arrears of pay, and they would be no forwarder. But if she will send them men paid by herself, she can hand the money to Duke Casimir, who will raise an army and draw off half of Don John's force, which would be as good as winning a big battle, and keep the King of France from helping him. Duke Casimir might make his principal effort on the coasts of France, with the help or connivance of her Majesty, if she likes to send some of her subjects to join him. He would roam about Normandy and Picardy, where he will pick up a good many men, not amusing himself by taking or surprising fortresses, though not neglecting this when occasion serves. He would stay at fortifiable spots along the coast ; with a good number of pioneers he could make them defensible. There are people, too, in Britanny who, if they saw such a force, have means of doing as they might have done better in the late war, if they had seen a chance of help. Beside this work on the coast, the Duke could send a force into Languedoc and Guyenne, and with the help of the Churches give the King plenty of trouble in those quarters. In this way the two kings will be best kept in check and prevented from any enterprise against her Majesty. And the Churches may be secretly treated with, through the Duke, to take arms when anyone wants to injure her, if means are given the Duke to succour them ; a condition which her Majesty cannot hope for from anyone but the Churches. Fr. 3 pp. (Probably connected with D. Rogers' negotiations.) [Holl. and Fland. IV. 58.]
K. d. L. x. 130.
Asking that he will give the bearer, who is going into England on business, letters of introduction to some lords there, to expedite his business. His Excellency has written to the lords of the Council on his behalf. Antwerp, the Dec. 1577. (Signed) Charles de Levin de Famars. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 59.]
Dec. [?] 557. Scheme for a tax of two patars a week, to be levied on every householder, showing how this would enable the Estates to maintain an army of 30,000 men. Copy. Fr. 6½ pp. [Ibid. IV. 60.]
Dec. [?] 558. MEMORANDUM upon the Privileges enjoyed by the PROVINCES of the LOW COUNTRIES, and the limitations to the power of the various DUKES, COUNTS, &c., by whom they have been governed ; with instances from history of the Depositions of some of them, the appointment of RUWARDS in BRABANT.
Apparently sent by Davison in connexion with the deposition of Don John. Endd. : (1) by Walsingham : . . [discour]se to shew that Counts of Holland have been deposed ; (2) by L. Tomson : The form and state etc. English. Govr. Holld. 6 pp. [Holl. and Fland. IV. 61.] (Calendared in 1575 ; No. 533.)
Dec. 559. MEMORANDUM as to rates of PAY in the LOW COUNTRIES.
"Pay given in Brabant in time past to officers in the force, as followeth, and first to the Lord Marshall." He has for himself 300 philips per month, and some 500 more for his staff ; halberdiers, chaplain (12), clerks, trumpeter (16), two carriages for the provost and one more for prisoners as occasion doth serve at 8 patars the horse a month, hangman (16), &c., &c. "The pay of a colonel of 2,000 Walloons, footmen, and his officers." Colonel 300 philips, lieutenant-colonel 100, sergeant-major 40, chaplain 19, interpret 12, surgeon 20, cook 6, his man 4, hangman 16, &c., &c. "The captain of a band, and his pay, and his officers." Captain 40, lieutenant 20, ensign 16, sergeant 16, guide 12, two "phiffes" 12, &c., &c. "The captain of 100 Spaniards and his officers." Captain 100 florins, lieutenant or ensign 50, a musketeer according to his valour, 9 or 10, a bastard musketeer 7, a simple harquebusier 6. "In a company of 100 Spaniards they use but 3 officers, making their lieutenant and ensign but one, and one sergeant." The States of Brabant now make colonels of 10 ensigns, an ensign being 200 men, including captain, lieutenant, and ensign. The colonel chooses his officers and distributes the pay as he has 'imprest' for his companies. Touching horsemen, the demands that have been made by burgomasters and others, I will further declare by word of mouth ; and the difference between this pay and that of the . . . . I will show by my contract in the Prince of Orange's hand. In Brabant a captain of horse has 100 florins, the lieutenant 70, the 'guidon' 45. Lances and 'argoletts' are equal in pay. The 'imprest' of 2,000 horse amounts to 792,000 florins. Endd. with Walsingham's mark, and again in later hand. 5½ pp. [Ibid. IV. 62.]
Date uncertain (on back, 1569, but probably later). 560. An ABRIDGMENT of the material matters contained in the PORTUGAL letters.
Advise to send over the second letters, before the letters taken be read ; and that Doctor Hector or Balthazar Peirs should haste to be on the other side before there be any more stir here. Written in a pair of tables directed to Dr. Hector.
1. The Doctor has advertised him of certain things which he will not yet reveal ; he, Thomas Gomez, minds to tarry till he have further advice.
3 [sic]. Advertisement committed to the bringer : 50 ducats to be paid at the arrival of a ship named St. Anthony ; the evil news of Portugal makes them fearful.
F. A. to Bernardo Lewce.
4. The arrest made in Portugal cometh evil to pass ; concerning the "Portingall's" affairs now in hand ; a device to buy wares, as it seems stayed in the ship by help of some trusty Englishman and by help of the ambassador, or in some French ship, to be sent to Rouen under a charter-party or feigned bargain made there, not trusting the mariner ; by which there may be gotten a great deal of money, and will be better trade than to send wares to Spain or Portugal. He desires speedy advertisement hereof by way of Calais, by conveyance by Bongiani Tadei. He has spoken with an English captain to buy 5,000 dry hides and certain elephant's teeth, which came out of Nova Hispania, but stays till further advice ; and are goods to be sent to Rouen, Hamborough, or Emden?
Dr. Hector to Bernardo Lewce.
7 [sic]. There is no dealing with Mr. Winter but by law ; and, therefore, a letter of attorney is necessary. Robert Ridolfi is to be spoken with concerning a procuration for Ireland : there is no good means to send to "Lisheborne" at this time : a bag of money of Jeronimo Linda lacking.
Dr. Hector to Bernardo Lewce.
8. Certain bags of money missing in Feck Peters, and the master of the ship suspected.
Fernando Alvaries to Francisco de Pina.
9. The two Barnes have been spoken with to intreat the Winter to come to some reasonable order, but he will do nothing by friendship, and, therefore, needful to seek it by the law.
Balthazar Peris to Roderigo Domega.
10. The arrest in Portugal of the Englishmen lamented as prejudicial to their trade.
Balthazar Peris to Edwardi [sic] Philippi.
12 [sic]. Bags and clothes meant to be sent over in a ship which will be ready within this fortnight.
Dego Peris to Roderigo Domega.
14 [sic]. Advice to the consul of the Spaniards in Brydges that he should beware what he writes ; for it is a miracle his letters were not opened, and if he should write anything prejudicial, he should not be well discharged. Written by Hector Nounes.
15. Hope of recovery of Portugal's goods which have bills of lading and good proof ; some of the bags of money are lacking.
Dr. Hector N. to Jeronimo Linda.
16. Licence of corn will not be easily granted now. — doubted that the Lords will deliver no wares without bills of lading on the ship's books. Here are syrups, sugars, cochineal and other wares to be sold if he had money, wherein there would be good pains to be sent in a French ship making a feigned charterparty.
Dr. Hector to Simon Soeiro.
17. Doubt that there will be great trouble in recovering their goods for lack of bills of lading ; some bags of money do lack.
Written by Hector Nunes to Manual Roderigues.
18. Doubt of recovery of the Portugal's goods, seeing the Englishmen and their goods are arrested in Portugal, because of Mr. Winter's letters of marque, which comes evil to pass.
Hector Nunes to Jeronimo Lindo.
19. The Portugal's goods are not yet recovered, and small hope ; because of the tidings of the arrest of the Englishman and their goods in Portugal. And a great fault found in Feck Peters for concealing certain bags of money to the Commissioners. He is glad he did not exhibit the request for the elephant's teeth, because they may pass for Spaniards' goods, whereof there is better hope than of the Portugal's goods at this time. A note sent of the merchandize and money lacking in the two bulks which came out of Portugal.
Dr. Hector Nunes to Rodorico Alvaries.
20. He will not deal with Mr. Winter, being so well friended, as he is of one that is of authority in these affairs. Nothing can be recovered without good evidence. The arrest made in Portugal of Englishmen and their goods hinders the former suit ; not knowing what order any Lords of the Council will take in the matter, Mr. Winter is desirous to sell the wares, and has entered good sureties for the same ; and if he will that he or other shall buy them, if there be any means to land them, there he will find a means to send them under pretence of sending them elsewhere.
Dr. Hector Nunes to Fernando Trias.
21. He will send twelve bayes in another man's name, because there are tidings that Englishmen and their goods are arrested in Portugal.
George James to Andrew Dias.
22. Mr. Winter is not a man to be dealt with by friendship ; the arrest in Portugal [? of Portugals] and their goods is to the great hindrance and apparent trouble of the Portugals.
Dr. Hector Nunes to Alvare Mendez.
23. The arrest of Englishmen and their goods in Portugal declared : there are no pirates abroad : the Queen's ships are come, and commandment given that the sea should be free.
24. He would fain take the voyage on hand for France, doubting that the Portugals shall be arrested here in England as Englishmen are in Portugal.
Henrico Roderigo to Digo Peris.
Endd. by Burghley : Contents of the letters of Portugal. 2¼ pp.
Dec. 561. MINUTES of sundry her MAJESTY'S letters to the KING OF DENMARK.
He will diminish his customs in case other princes will do the same. A peculiar favour could not be shewed to his Majesty's subjects without manifest offence to other princes. That this matter may be put off to a more convenient time, when by common consent of all princes some due order may be generally taken therein.
No benefit by his country for venting our commodities that we bring in. The sales amongst whom being made it accrueth and returneth to the merchant what he paid before for his tolls. No commodity by his country for any commodities we buy here ; whereas other merchants trading [to] her Majesty's dominions buy commodities here whereby they live, and seeing that profit groweth to them thereby, good reason her Majesty should take custom of them in such as she doth.
The hundred penny and last geld only exacted upon the F. E. & S. Desire not any clean exemption from new tolls, but only that the new tolls may be brought to some certainty and be moderate ; and that the last new toll, termed by the name of Lastgeld, may be utterly cut off. Because it was by petition demanded, and that very earnest, and granted with condition it should be repaid at the end of the wars with Sweden. Because it is remitted to others, in Articulo 67, as to the merchants of the Low Countries ; and was never paid by any of the Hanse Towns. Act 82 begins to exact of the Low Countries Lastgelt, which, notwithstanding is more moderate by half than it is taken of the English ; for the Low Countries pay but half a 'daler' for a last, inwards and outwards, and the English pay a whole 'daller,' unless it be for 'tun' goods, as pitch, tar, ashes, and wood : and for every ship pound of 'weye' which is not the eighth part of a last in weight, they pay a 'doler' between the Isle of Wight and the Needles. between the Isles of Guernsey and Jersey. In writing of L. Tomson. Endd. as heading. 1 p. [Denmark I. 5.]
Dec. 562. TERMS of the LOAN to the STATES GENERAL.
"Articles containing [sic] a certain sum of money asked as a loan from the Queen of England by his Catholic Majesty's States General of Lower Germany."
On receipt of the bonds of the Queen and the city of London for a sum not exceeding £100,000, the States shall place similar obligations in the hands of her Majesty's agent or deputy, and shall within 40 days after any requisition on her part to that effect give the obligations of particular cities, to be named by the said agent or deputy, for full and absolute settlement of the loan. The States promise that they will either release the Queen from her creditors to the amount in question, or will pay cash to that amount in London at 12 months' date from the delivery of the instrument on behalf of the Queen to their deputies. If within 12 months terms of peace are made with the King the States shall pay in full before the ratification thereof, or shall send twelve hostages to England, six from either side, of whom half to be nobles, half other subjects of his Majesty. Any interest owing the States promise to pay with the principal. The commander-in-chief and generals of the troops, who will be sent, to be admitted to debate and vote in the council of the States. The troops to be 5,000 foot and 2,000 horse. The sums advanced by the Queen for the outfit of the troops to be repaid in London in English money, at three months. The troops to have as good pay as those of any other nation in the States' service. The States to pay the costs of the troops' conveyance. Pay to be reckoned from the embarkation of the troops. At the cessation of arms, costs of reconveyance, or one month's pay to be paid by the States. Victuals to be supplied to the troops at a fair price, and all arrangements for their welfare honestly attended to. Latin. 2 pp. Marginal headings by L. Tomson. [For. E.B. Misc. II.]
Dec. 563. "MEMORANDUM of the PRINCES who have offered me their services."
Duke Joachim Ernest of Anhalt .................. 3,000 horse.
Duke Francis of Lauenburg ........................ 2,000 horse.
A brother of his, called Maurice, offers his services simply, as also does a Duke of Pomerania named Casimir. I hope also to have one of the young Dukes of Deux Ponts. I have hopes also of the Count of Montbéliard. Count Adolphus of Neuenaar has offered 2,000 horse and 2,000 infantry, Walloons, men of Liége, and Flemings. Endd. by D. Rogers (probably an enclosure in one of his letters): Les nommes [sic] de princes qu'ont offert leurs services au Mons. le Duc Casimir. Fr. 9 lines. [Germ. States I. 53.]
E. B.
564. ARTICLES to a TREATY to be observed and mutual amity to be entertained between the QUEEN and the STATES of LOWER GERMANY.
The ancient treaties between the realm of England and the house of Burgundy shall remain in force and unaltered. No business of importance with regard to peace and war shall be transacted in the Low Countries during the present troubles without her Majesty's consent. If any prince or state shall practise against the peace of the Queen and her dominions, the States-General shall aid her with men to the same number and under the same conditions as those under which she is now to aid them. If any dissensions arise among them, they shall inform the Queen of the causes thereof, and seek her counsel to settle them. If the Queen shall fit out a fleet to keep the peace at sea, they shall contribute 40 ships, the least of 40 tons burden. The States shall not permit any English rebels or deserters and fugitives to dwell in the Low Countries after they have been denounced as such by the Queen and her ministers, but shall expel them. They shall make no secret treaties with any prince or power whatsoever without the Queen's consent, but shall comprehend her in any such treaty. Those who now hold the reins of state or shall hereafter be admitted to the administration in the Low Countries shall ratify and confirm the above articles. When peace is made, the States shall promise that the King of Spain shall establish and confirm all these articles, or so many of them as it shall seem to the Queen and her ministers expedient to make perpetual. Latin. 2 pp. Marginal headings in L. Tomson's hand. [For, E.B. Misc. II.]
[Aug. ?
565. (fn. 2)MEMORANDUM from the LORDS of the COUNCIL to SIR AMYAS POULET, Ambassador in France.
The French ambassador has informed the Queen of the request made to the King by the Estates-General now assembled that he will revoke the late Edict and reduce them to one only religion. To provoke him the rather to this they alleged in what blessed state her Majesty and her realm were, and all because she had within the same but the exercise of one only religion. The King advertised the King of Navarre and Prince of Condé of this ; and doubting lest they might take occasion to enter into some new act of hostility, and also send some one of their associates to give her other information of his meaning than was agreeable unto truth, and require assistance at her hands, the Ambassador desired her not to give hasty credit to their report, nor yield them any assistance. She answered that she was sorry there should be given such dangerous advice to the King ; and that he could have delivered no message more unwelcome to her, and spoke of the likelihood that the revocation of the Edict should throw them into a new war. It is most evident that a Prince guided by sound advice ought not to enter into wars otherwise than as men take medicine in extreme diseases. And if foreign wars are to be avoided, how much more civil and inward, especially the same being drawn by heat of contention and continuance to such an extreme issue that the strife will not be who shall overcome, but who shall live. It was a thing against nature that the head whose foresight should preserve the rest of the body should bend itself to the destruction of the same. As to the reasons drawn from the quiet estate of this realm, she showed him that in the true use of example men ought always to weigh the circumstances. If this rule had been observed in the present case, it would have been seen that the quiet of this realm served but to very little purpose, for in our realm never was there either granted or demanded, for the avoiding of civil dissension, the use of any other religion than one ; which if it had been by us granted, surely rather then she would by revocation of any such grant have drawn upon us a civil war. She wished that the Estates had better considered of the matter than to have been the authors of so violent counsell, and had hoped that as it was given out that the end of the assembly was to cure the sores of that diseased State, so their counsels would have tended to so necessary and godly a purpose ; which finding now to fall out quite contrary to the great expectation of the world, she feared (said she) the King shall have cause to term them rather particular than general estates in respect of the particular passions they seem to be carried away withal. The violations of the Edict have always been disadvantageous, the King having been always forced to yield very good conditions of peace. It was thought that the loss of the battles of Jarnac and Moncontour would have ended all, but the loss of a battle is not always a gage of a thorough conquest. How things have fallen out since the death of the Admiral and others of the nobility slain at Paris, methinks (said she) should not be easily forgotten. Whosoever were the author of that violent counsel, were he stranger or subject, pope or prince, could not but look to receive more profit of the advice than she feared the King should take. Though she knows it is given out abroad that she takes delight and makes profit of others' troubles, she protests on the faith of a prince that if her wish and advice had taken place, neither France nor Flanders had been in that perplexed state that they now are. If it be considered how little profit she has made of the occasions that have been offered her, it will be seen what wrong they have done her who have judged her to have been carried away with any ambitious desire for the increase of her dominions. Other princes' dominions she seeketh none, her people she maintaineth in peace and governeth by justice, and therefore doth nothing doubt but that he that is the author and maintainer of justice will protect her. As for his request made unto her in the 'clause and shutting' of his speech that she would keep an ear open for the King his master's defence, as also not to assist them, to the first her answer was that as she had been always inclined to justice she would not be forgetful thereof in the affairs of a prince of such friendship with her. And to the second, she assured him that she would do therein as should appertain to her in honour. This was the sum of the speeches which passed between her Majesty and the French ambassador, which her pleasure was I should impart to you that you might acquaint the King therewith. And this much she would have you communicate with Queen Mother, adding moreover that it is a thing greatly marvelled at that a peace and unity of the subjects of France which she had earnestly laboured and with such difficulty obtained took so little root and could have no longer continuance. Especially the parties being such as have been by the King himself cleared from all attempts against the King and his crown, and all their former doings vouched to be done for his service. And the world will not be persuaded forasmuch as it is generally considered that as she hath had the conduct of the whole state hitherto, so this would not have fallen out if she would have withstood it. The consequence whereof is like to be very hurtful to the realm, and loss and decay of that party which are the chief movers of these troubles and the increase of them whom they seek to destroy. If the event of former proceedings will not be marked, the line that so long draweth the boat against the stream, by oft moiling in the water will come to be 'rotte' ; and so to break, and the ship, be she never so strongly built that continueth long in the stormy tempest on the raging seas, will in fine, by extremity of tempest, be brought to 'lecage' and so in conclusion be sunk, though she carried never so proud and lofty sails ; whereby if things fall out otherwise than well, a matter greatly feared of men of best judgement, the brunt of the blame is like to light most heavily upon her. Copy. 6½ pp. [Copies of two letters follow ; the first being that written by the Queen to Sir A. Poulet' when he had the custody of the Scott : Queene,' beginning : 'Amyas my most faithful and careful servant.' It has been frequently printed, and is assigned to Aug., 1586. The other is 'A letter from her Majesty to Sir Amias Poulet, Ambassador in France, of comfort upon the death of his eldest son,' which took place in Jan., 1579. These documents, together with the 'Necessary Considerations' calendared later on, occupy fourteen pages, numbered 247-260, apparently from a commonplace-book or notebook. The entries appear to have been made at various times and by various hands.] [France I. 62.]
Probably June or July, 1576. 566. The DECLARATION of the KING upon the LIMITATION of the EDICT for general exercise of RELIGION.
In reply to a request of the deputies for a further interpretation of the clause in the Edict of Pacification enacting that the permission for the exercise of the religion in all places shall be subject to the proviso that the places belong to them, or that it be with the consent of those to whom they belong. Signed, Henry ; Countersigned, Fizes. Endd. Fr. ¾ p. [Ibid I. 63.]
567. Terms of the peace of 1576, preceded by some observations of the Huguenot deputies, expressing a want of confidence in the sincere desire of the other party to make a permanent peace. [Endorsement imperfect . . . lesquelles le Roy a accordez aux deputez, apostilles.] Fr. 2½ pp. [Ibid. I. 64.]
[?] 568. Paper by Thomas Wilks, giving a sketch of the transactions in France "from the very time of the massacre at Paris, being in the year 1572," of the imprisonment of the Duke of Alençon and the King of Navarre ; of the efforts made by Sir D. Dale, Sir T. Leighton, and the writer himself, to render them some assistance ; of the risks incurred by himself, the accusation laid against him by the Queen Mother, and his own failure to obtain any investigation into them. "And therefore the author of that slanderous libel doth most falsely tax her Majesty in saying that she should be a stirrer and mover of that contention between the King and his brother ; for first she entered not into the cause between them, but at the earnest suit and entreaty of Monsieur and the King of Navarre, and then proceeding between them was most godly and charitable in persuading of peace and quietness between them." Endorsed by Walsingham : A discourse of her Majesty's proceedings between Monsieur and the 2 Kings of France his brethren, Charles and Henry. And below in Burghley's hand : Mr. Wilks. Below, the mark [Walsingham's mark] and date 1572, which is clearly wrong, as Randolph's mission in 1576 is referred to. From a side-note in another hand, it would appear to have been written in Walsingham's life-time. The writing is that of Wilks himself. 10 pp. [Ibid. I. 65.]
[?] 569. A RELATION concerning PRECEDENCY between FRANCE and SPAIN.
Extract from Bodinus De la République [first published in 1577], Book i., Ch. 9. Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [Ibid. I. 66.]
[? May,
570. The names of those noblemen as are assured for the religion and for the maintenance of the same. [Names follow.] The names of such as be counsellors of the King of Navarra and to the Prince of Condé. [Names follow.] The names of such noblemen and gentlemen as are about the prince. [Names follow.] Touching Monsr. Danville. As for Monsr. Danville his revolt cannot greatly hurt the cause. The greatest holds remain in the Protestants' hands. His revolt will prove no less dishonourable to him than the Duke de Uzes' did to him, and the Baron des Adrets', and Langoran's and Monsieur's were to them, who in their revolt drew away a very few after them, and so will this man. The names of the towns which they hold. [Names follow.] Endd. 3 pp. [Ibid. I. 67.]
1577 [?]. 571. DESIGNS against ENGLAND.
There has been proposed to the Most Christian King on the part of certain Italians favouring the Church of Rome, a conspiracy with a view to exterminate all the reformed Churches of Christendom, and utterly destroy all princes and others who profess the Gospel as well according to the French as the Augustan confession, by means of intelligence between the Kings of Spain and France and the Pope, with other princes whom they call Catholic. First, they point out that the reformed Churches were first founded in Germany, having been courageously protected by some of the princes of that country, among others the Electors Palatine and of Saxony, who still uphold them, and that the sovereigns of England and notably the present Queen, with the view of securing their own realms, foster, to the injury especially of the Kings of France and Spain, the heresies which are always troubling their realms, and now promise a general revolt throughout the Low Countries, and consequently in the rest of their dominions. In order therefore to cut away these troubles at the root, to stop the favour shown to the heretics, and cut off their resources, and to bring all Christendom back under the Pope's authority, it is necessary to fall upon their chief supporters, and especially on the Queen of England. Don John has been designated to the chief command in the execution of this enterprise, as the most suitable person they could find ; having all the qualities required for a great captain to bring the matter to a happy issue, being young, prudent, valiant and experienced. His past good fortune, the disposition of affairs in the Low Countries, the motion that he might marry the Queen of Scots through the practice of the house of Guise, the assurance that he would be accompanied by many persons in his confidence, who living on the fruits of war try all means of continuing it, stimulate him to the undertaking. Don John's resources depend on the King of Spain, who will in any case use his wonted dissimulations, on the Pope, or the Genoese and other Italian powers ; also on the King of Sweden and his adherents. These will furnish men and money, ships and artillery, and all necessaries. The Pope, the King of Spain, the Genoese, and other Italian powers promise 30 galleys, 12 great ships, the least of 600 or 700 tons, and the King of Sweden, with others, another 12, manned with 8,000 or 10,000 soldiers, besides the shipmen, all victualled and equipped for six months. The manner of execution will be to take these forces to Ireland, and there break into [entamer] the English State. They claim to have intelligence with a good number of English, Scottish, and other Catholics who have fled thither ; and these after the first battle, in the event of victory being on the side of Don John, promise to declare themselves, to get a footing on the main land, to raise their party, and favour the landing of 8,000 or 10,000 men, who will be sent. To render their enterprise more secure, they allege the great number of partisans whom they have in England and Scotland, apart from those who uphold the Queen of Scots ; and that in addition to the inexperience of these two nations in war, the Queen of England's forces could not long hold out, having at present no captains of experience. That the defence of this country consists only in the maintenance of a certain number of vessels badly armed, whose crews through being long unpractised in the art of war cannot be of such sort as is required. So that at the first furious attack of the galleys and galleasses, like that which he employed in his battle with the Turks, besides transports full of trained men, they promise themselves a certain victory. By this means they make sure of an easy conquest of the realm, both by means of their intelligences with the Queen of Scots and because they have to do with an inexperienced person, a lady disliked by her subjects, especially the Catholics. The intelligence which these undertakers have with partisans in England and Scotland is nevertheless subject to the condition that they will not declare themselves till they see a battle won, so that in the event of defeat they may not be recognised or brought to justice. As regards Germany, the Guises favour Don John's cause all they can, and have large forces posted in the direction of Luxembourg, both to keep the Low Countries in alarm and to carry out a design they have formed upon the territories of Duke Casimir, against whom they have a great grudge. To this end Don John and his ministers are practising with the Bishops who border on Duke Casimir, in order that they may collect a great force and fall upon him. They protest that once this enterprise is on foot they will not abandon it till they have executed it on all princes who support the Church of God, and Casimir in particular. Then to prevent all hindrances, and weaken all who favour the cause of the Low Countries, they have induced the Muscovite to make a great levy of reiters for an enterprise on Poland, or further if possible ; the moment being convenient this year, since the Turk is preparing his army for Asia Minor, where the Sophy is said to be about to make a great effort ; so that his forces being diverted they can profit by the opportunity. Upon all which things it is expedient to take counsel maturely and diligently provide for them. Herein each must take thought for his own preservation according to the faculties that God has given him. Each must have a good understanding with the rest and keep his eyes open. Copy. Fr. 3 pp. In the same hand as many of the documents from the Low Countries. [Holl. and Fland. IV. 63.]
[Dec.] 572. Petition by Adolf de Meetkerke for leave to buy and export to the Low Countries ordnance to the weight of 60 tons.
Endd. Fr. ½ p. [Ibid. V. 64.]


[? 1577]. 1s. Copy of a clause in the treaty of reciprocal privileges granted to the Hanse Towns by Henry IV. Latin. Below is : I find this above written entered in the Company's register, but have not seen the original. Your honour's humbly at command, John Mershe. Endd. by Burghley's secretary : A condition inserted in the privileges of the Hanse tempore E. [sic] 4. 1 p. [Hanse Towns, I. 1.]
July 19. 2s. Copy of first and last clauses of the commercial treaty of July 19, 1567, with the denunciation of the same by the government of Hamburg, dated July 19, 1577, and a legal opinion by Robert Forth and Henry Jones to the effect that the conditions in the original treaty providing for denunciation have not arisen. Endd. : The Doctors' opinion upon the privileges granted by Hamburg to the merchants adventurers. Latin. 3½ pp. [Ibid. I. 2.]
Another copy. [Ibid. I. 2a.] [Two later copies (Sir J. Williamson) not numbered.]
Aug. 20. 3s. Copy of the warrant to Mr. Hoddesdon (See no. 125). In his own hand. Endd. by L. Tomson. ½ p. [Ibid. I. 3.]
11 September, 1577.—I have now to impart my proceedings in those matters committed to me, so that it may always appear where and how her Majesty bears the adventures of those things committed to my charge—that I may be the better discharged if any mischance happen. First, for what I received at the hands of Mr. Marten, warden of her Majesty's mint, these parcels following :—
In silver bullion, according to the new standard £12,907 13s. 6¾d.
In gold ingots . . . . . . . . . . . £2,134 7s. 3d.
In ingots, with the allowance which I made to him for the exchange, at 3d. in the £ . . £4,057 19s. 2¼d.
And in silver coin, to make up £20,000 . . . £900 0s. 0d.
If I had received these sums according to the old standards without allowance for exchange of gold, the total would have been less by £157 11s. 3d. But I hope that more than I receive will not be demanded at my hands, and, therefore, I am satisfied though I have given a discharge to the Exchequer for the full value of £20,000. The sum aforesaid will be disposed in two ships as follows :—
Already laden in the Mayflower of Lee, Mr. Richard Powlter, packed with pewter, bullion to the value of . £7,300 3s. 2d. The rest of the bullion is already shipped in the Black Lion of London, Mr. Thomas Wright, and packed in 14 barrels with pewter . . . . . . . . . . . . . £5,607 10s. 4¾d. All the gold I mean to convey with myself aboard the Black Lion, where 'I mean shall be the greatest adventure,' by means of myself, who will be always ready to look to it £6,192 6s. 5¼d. By exchange, viz., to Thomas Randall, mercer, £100 ; to Thomas Gambell, ironmonger, £200 ; to John Boylson, clothworker, £100 ; to Richard Tockmead, £200 ; to Randolph Gymmer, £100 ; to John Bonner, £50 ; in all amounting to £750 0s. 0d. The rest, which is employed in pewter and charges £150 0s. 0d. In the pewter, though there will be no great gain, there can be no great loss ; but it has been such a 'colour' to the conveyance of the mass shipped, that hitherto no searcher has been privy thereto. I would have come myself with this note, but two causes moved me to 'slack' my duty ; one, that now at my departure my coming to Court might be notified to some 'busy heads,' and so the cause of my going opened ; the other that I am very loath to be far from my charge. So hoping you will take all in good part, I will rest with my daily prayer for your preservation, and for my own good success in discharging my duty. Thus tarrying only for a wind, I take my leave, with humble suit to you to remain in the stead of a father to my son Francis if God take me away before my return ; for I have left him wholly to you, with that small portion which I have to leave for him. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. I. 4]
Touching the disposition of my charge, if her Majesty's pleasure 'alter to be preserved' and kept in readiness beyond the seas for such purposes as she may from time to time have occasion to employ it for, I think if it be offered to the merchant adventurers they will willingly embrace it, 'yea, and to answer after 6 per centum for finance thereof,' though they be bound to repay it at any time with 2 months' notice. If this is done, there will grow to her Majesty £1,200 profit yearly, that is more than would have increased thereby in her exchequer ; besides that it will be ready to serve all turns, and encounter the 'disgracements' sustained by the proceedings last year at Cologne. But if her Majesty do not like this, I think the safest way will be to leave it in some principal town in Germany, taking their bonds for its repayment. I chiefly make choice of Lubeck, 'Looneberghe,' Konigsberg, and Hamburg, being all famous cities, and situated not more than one day's journey from one another, by which means the 'intreaty' with them will be with the less 'travell,' both for disbursing and collecting again. Thus if 20,000 dollars be delivered to the custody of each of these, the rest will not be more than I can safely return by exchange or in gold. If her Majesty take this course, it will be great credit to her beyond the seas and a terror to her enemies that she has such 'chambers,' and treasure in places where men of war are always 'prest' to serve her turn ; for I reckon that the bruit of it will be ten times more than it is, and when it is known to be in four cities, it will be thought to be in like case in twenty more. So to my thinking any of these doings will serve to better purpose than to have it lying in the exchequer ; always provided that if she be of their last opinion you will send me a form of bond in Latin, ready drawn, to be required of the magistrates of the town. Immediately on my landing at my 'pretended' port, I mean to let you know the safe arrival of all things ; and I think that for the cause aforesaid I shall be of the same opinion as now.— Written on board the Black Lion under sail over against Lee in Essex, 18 September, 1577. P.S.—This matter has passed so silently that I have had no occasion to show my warrant to any of the searchers. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. I. 5.]
God be thanked, I have arrived with all things in good order in this river of 'Hamborowe,' caled the 'Ellve.' I have no time to write more, meeting this ship under sail, I cast this letter into him in haste.—Aboard the Black Lion in the Elbe, 23 Sept., 1577. Add. Endd. 7 ll. [Ibid. I. 6.]
Sept. 24. 7s. Hamburg, 24 Sept., 1577.—As on the 18th I wrote of my being at Lee, so I am now to give God thanks for my safe arrival at this town. My voyage was as follows. On the 19th I departed from Lee about 9 a.m., and the same day about 9 at night recovered Orfordness, whence we set our course to sea 'next unto' the northeast, having the wind at S.S.W. We got sight of the Flye-land about 4 p.m. on the 20th, where the night following we 'wanted no foul weather,' thunder, rain, and lightning ; but the wind so large that towards night on the 21st we could discern the Helye land [Holy Island], by means whereof we lay all that night 'a hulling' [without any 'scryppe' of sail], and about six a.m. on the 22nd set sail, and that day 'recovered as high into the Elbe' as a small town called 'Browne's bottle,' which may be about 30 English miles from hence, where I met with a ship of Lee, the master's name Gray, by whom I sent you three or four words. Thence, as yesterday, the 23rd, we set sail and came hither the same night. I write in the plural number, because both the Black Lion and the Mayflower, notwithstanding the foul weather which we had thwart off Flye-land, never lost company, but are now both moored here at an anchor in safety [the Black Lion moored hard by the town, and the Mayflower about 16 miles hence riding at an anchor, for as the weather was misty yesterday, she would come no higher.] To Mr. Doctor Rogers I have delivered your letter. I am ignorant of his dealing, and therefore omit those matters to himself to enlarge upon. As touching the leaving of my charge in safe custody, if occasion serve, I am of the same opinion as at Lee, whence I wrote largely, I have written a copy of it upon the other side, that it may not be troublesome to you to read except occasion require. If you send your letter to Rynolde Coppcotte, resident at Antwerp, he will safely send them to me. [Overleaf is a repetition in slightly different terms, of the advice given as to the disposal of the money in his letter of the 18th.] Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Ibid. I. 7.]
[Sept. 24.] 8s. HODDESDON to BURGHLEY.
Copy of first paragraph of above, with slight variations, indicated by brackets. Add. Endd. 2/3 p. [Ibid. I. 8.]
Oct. 5. 9s. Hamburg, 5 October, 1577.—I wrote of my safe arrival, with a short account of my journey, by post viâ Antwerp, on the 24th ult., so now I have no matters of weight to treat of, and trouble you with this letter chiefly 'for good usance.'
Since my moving I have heard nothing further touching my charge than was explained to me in London ; whereof if it be her Majesty's pleasure to alter her first purpose, and it is to be dispersed among the merchant adventurers, I beseech you that some of my friends may be remembered who moved me therein last year when I went to Cologne ; I mean Mr. Alderman Blanke and Mr. Alderman Starkey and others, who will give as good security for it as in reason may be required ; so that if you will permit me to have the distribution of 3,000l. or 4,000l. of it, it will be done as I hope to your good liking. There is no news worth telling. The 'Swethenas' have made a 'rode' to 'the Narve' with ten sail, and have set fire to the blockhouse which lies upon the sea about seven English miles from the town. They have consumed it, and taken the ordnance that was therein, without doing any other damage to the country ; but as the report goes, had it not been for three French ships which lay at the mouth of the river, they had put the whole town of the Narve in danger of burning. Dantzic as yet 'keep their own' and defend their town very manfully against the puissance of the King of Poland, who has withdrawn to the city of 'Maringborough,' where he has appointed conference with divers ambassadors sent to him both from the Emperor and other princes and signiories of Germany on behalf of Dantzic. So there is hope of a reasonable composition for its safety. News is also come that the 'Danskars' have set fire to all the warehouses at Mellving [Qu. Elbing], and thereby destroyed great quantities of corn and other wares, to the 'dolance' of divers, and small profit to themselves in my opinion ; for they have thereby moved the King's ire more earnestly against them. There is some talk that 'Hartyghe Eryghe of Brownswek' is levying horsemen ; but as yet no 'perfect ground' thereof. If he do, it may be thought it is to aid Don John, for he was wont to serve the King of Spain. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. I. 9.]
Duplicate of the last. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. I. 10.]
'Laus Deo, in Hamborowe,' 7 October, 1577.—This is a copy of my last, dated the 5th inst. If that be come to your hands you will not need to read this. I sent it by John Bonner, pilate [sic] of the Black Lion. [The rest as above.] Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. I. 11.]
Oct. 17. 12s. HODDESDON to BURGHLEY.
'Laus Deo,' Hamburg, 17 October, 1577.-The last I sent was by Mr. John Spencer, bearing date the 7th inst., being a copy of another sent by sea by John Bonner, written on the 4th [sic]. Since then I have thoroughly informed myself of the reckonings of this mint, which I find very unprofitable, for if I should here coin the silver which I have, I should scarce make of the pound sterling 23s. 6d. Flemish ; for the mint is here only 'Rykes dolers,' very rich [?], wherefore I do not mean to coin any part of it without special commission. Thus you may perceive the loss that grows by sudden provision ; for if it had been made hither in convenient time by exchange, her Majesty would find great profit thereby, for she would have been saved above 100l. Flemish. So I note that if she would always have 10,000l. Flemish upon the exchange, it would rise to great profit, and yet be always in readiness to serve all turns, both this side the sea, and also in England. I have also to remind you that the greatest mass of my charge remains with me in bullion, that order may be taken for the delivery of it, whereof as yet I hear nothing. If her Majesty wants saltpetre or gunpowder I think I could make reasonable provision for it to be delivered in England about May 5 next. The company of merchant adventurers here have chosen me deputy and treasurer, offices more troublesome than profitable ; and therefore I would gladly have been discharged of them without letting them know that my being here was 'in the Prince's affairs, which I thought not good to do. But I trust to be discharged when my business is done, or else 'it would come me very evil to pass.' I am the more moved to dislike the office because we cannot here congregate ourselves to the service of God, nor, if any of our nation die, can we be permitted to give them Christian burial. This has come to pass only by the obstinacy of two or three wilful priests, who practise here to make their power papal. But some of the chief of the town seem to be indifferent ; so I think if her Majesty send letters to the magistrates for remedy herein, we shall find it to our great comfort. There are here of our nation as I take it about 150 persons, of whom the greater part are young men and spend their time idly upon the 'saboth' day. If the matter aforesaid were reformed so good order would be taken that the time would be spent to the glory of God and profit to themselves ; 'for there is nothing more dangerous for man than through want of prayer to unacquaint himself with God.' I am the bolder to write thus to you that I know you take pleasure to maintain and set forth God's glory ; wherefore I beseech you in my own behalf and that of her Majesty's other subjects here resident that you would be a means to obtain letters from her to the magistrates of this town touching the 'premises.' I have written the like to Mr. Secretary Walsingham. The rumour lately of 'Hartye Earyghe's' preparation did not arise without cause, for he pressed divers horsemen ; but now he has discharged them again, which prognosticates quietness in the Low Countries, unless conspiracies are made with the French, for which God grant a careful foresight. Duke Magnus, brother of the King of Denmark, has long had great entertainment of the Emperor of Russia ; who about ten years ago gave him his niece in marriage, besides great possessions on the borders of Leffeland, in order that he might remain his obedient subject. Now the bruit is that he has fallen into his Majesty's high displeasure, for taking divers towns in Leffeland under his government without the Emperor's consent. It is also reported that the Emperor of Russia has of late entered Leffeland with a great army, and in effect conquered the whole country except Revel and 'Rye,' which two towns he has much straitened ; for the Revelers dare not go out of their town walls, and from 'Rye' he has taken divers towns and holds that lay between them and Lettowe upon the river Dwina, so as to cut all trade away from the town. It is thought indeed that had not the King of Sweden fallen into the country of 'Carele,' whereby he was forced to move his camp to its aid, he would have come to the siege of 'Rye' so suddenly that he would have taken it half unprovided, as he did the rest of the country, which he has spoiled. The Danskers are in great hope of quietness, and that by aid of the 'intreaties' made by the ambassadors of the Emperor and other princes of Germany a reasonable agreement will be made in their behalf with the Kings of Poland ; who in my opinion might have employed his time much better in the 'defence' of the Russians than in the siege of Dantzic, for he is accounted the defender of 'Rye' in Leffeland. Add. Endd. 1¾ pp. [Ibid. I. 12.]
Copy of the above. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Ibid. I. 13.]
Oct. 17. 14s. HODDESDON to BURGHLEY.
Another copy. Add. Endd. 1⅓ pp. [Ibid. I. 14.]
Hamburg, 5 November, 1577.—I sent my last by Walter Cade, dated the 19th of this month. It was in effect only a copy of that of the 17th sent by the Mayflower. Although there are here great rumours of threats towards the Low Countries, I cannot hear of any levy of soldiers in Germany to serve either on one side or on the other. The princes in these parts are altogether quiet. Two great marriages have lately been concluded among them ; the Elector of Brandenburg with the daughter of the Duke of Anhalt, and 'Hartyghe' Barninus [sic] of Pomerland with the daughter of Duke Julius of Brunswick. About the beginning of last summer the King of Portugal wrote to the contractors of pepper, to deal with some prince in Germany to assist him, for money, with 10,000 soldiers and to pass them from hence to Portugal by sea. They dealt in his behalf with the Duke of 'Holste,' who was content to pleasure him so far as such composition might be agreed to as the Duke required. Amongst his articles was one that the soldiers should remain by their own religion, and that preachers should be sent with them from hence publicly to instruct them. Another was that six months' wages should be paid before they started, and that for full performance of these and other covenants, three sufficient towns in Germany should be bound. Which articles being sent to the King of Portugal, he never made answer to any of them ; wherefore it is thought that notwithstanding the great provision he had from hence of gunpowder, munitions, meal, bacon, etc., for want of men he will give up his voyage for Africa. I was last night 'in a great maze,' by means of a fire which consumed three dwelling-houses ; wherefore I would be glad to be disburdened of my charge, if it might 'stand' with her Majesty's good pleasure. It would in my opinion be secure with the merchant adventurers. News is come from 'Newringborough' that the Turk makes great preparation for war ; and it is feared that he will not continue his league with the Emperor, but that next summer he will invade the rest of Hungary. This seems so no less by the order of his 'coorsaryes,' who have already done divers outrages upon the Hungarians, and lie now, to the number of 6,000 Turks, at the siege of a proper town and castle adjoining, called St. Gertrude's, in Hungary. The Danskers have not yet made their agreement with the King of Poland, but are in great hope of a good end. Such news as is written to a friend of mine I have translated word for word out of the 'Dutch' tongue, and have caused it to be written on the other side ; for I suppose it will be very late before this comes to your hands. Yet I have sent it, that you may see how it agrees with others before received. By Christopher Staplehill, falconer, I have sent you a goshawk, 'the acception whereof is my desire.'
Overleaf is : From Rome, the 14th of September.
By writing from 'Genewaye' is signified that 45 galleys are set forward towards Vado, where the Spaniards should embark for Naples ; whence a post is come hither, sent in great haste from the Duke of 'Cessa,' with orders to signify that the said Spaniards are embarked and should be at unity with the 'Terzo' of Naples, who only awaits orders from Spain, whither they shall be sent. The said Duke of 'Cessa,' together with the Marquis Sta Croce and the Terzo, shall by command of the King, at the beginning of next month, ship the soldiers at [Qy. of] Figheroa for Spain ; so that it is supposed his Majesty will go 'against Impressa' in Africa, and withal have consideration to keep the Low Countries quiet. To-day is come hither in great haste the Bishop of Cambray, who imediately repaired to the Pope and Cardinal Granvelle ; but it is not yet known whether he be sent from the States or Don John. The said Don John has written to Osmaro, a 'Jesewyte,' and others of the same order to come to him, to be used in 'handling' with the States touching a peace, so far as concerns religion ; who accordingly prepared for the journey. The King of Sweden's ambassador has come here again from Naples, from the Viceroy, and has obtained that the King his master shall be 'answered' and paid 100,000 crowns, which the King of Spain 'did set him over for' to the Dukedom of 'Bary.' The same King of Sweden has required of the Pope certain Jesuits, to the end that in his kingdom he may erect a college of the same religion ; to which is appointed Posanio, with two others, who shall take to them eight more in Dutchland, and so go for Sweden.
From Venice, the 27th of September.
As we hear from Naples, the King of Spain has ordered an ambassador to be sent to Constantinople, who shall hold up 'the Mehemet Bassa' so long with the hope of peace between the King and the Turks, till the final end of the resolution 'hereafter followeth.' The Admiral of Castile will be sent to the Emperor's Court, and as men have written from Milan, to fetch the Empress and carry her to Spain ; after which it is thought that the King in person will go to the Low Countries, because he 'doth take the uproars there very grievous,' and will get more information of those matters than he has had before. Upon report of such as came hither out of a galley of Corfu it is said that 'the Ochialim' lost 17 Turks when he last spoiled the 'Raguseer' ship, and he himself wounded. But all the persons that were in the ship he chained in his galley to the oars. The aforesaid ambassador to Constantinople is safely arrived, and yesterday letters came from 'Leavande' ; but what they impart is not yet known.
Laus Deo, 1577, the 12 of October, at Prague.
On the 3rd inst. at midnight departed from Vienna the Archduke Mathew [sic] in the following manner :—
After the ambassadors on behalf of the States had by word of mouth made intercession to the Emperor that among other things it would please him to 'consent unto them' the Archduke for a Governor over the Netherlands, which though he did wholly deny, notwithstanding this one of the ambassadors named Walter van Malestede by all manner of ways practised with the Archduke, and after having obtained leave of the Emperor to take his journey, departed from 'Vyan.' But four days after, Malstede came to the city again, and on the 3rd, in the evening, had caused to be provided two 'couchwagons.' After which, at nine o'clock, he sent to the Archduke, and gave him to understand it was time to prepare himself for the 'pretended' matter. Whereupon the prince at once sent the lord of 'Donne' to the 'Burrowe-mr' and required that the gate might be kept open, for the Emperor would be sending certain of his servants about needful affairs, which was not so. The prince himself, after this, taking leave of the Emperor and his brother the Archduke Maximilian and bidding them goodnight, went to bed. Incontinent came the Lord of Done into his chamber, and told him the cause of his coming, who forthwith got ready, and passing by his brother Maximilian's chamber greeted him with request he would signify so much to the Emperor. And being apparelled in the clothes of a horsekeeper so departed thence, with two couchwagons and five horses, and travelled eight miles in six hours. So within four miles of Prague took their way to the Elbe and so forward toward the Netherlands. What further will follow, and how he and his company will be received by the States and Commons in that country will in time appear. Meantime, the Emperor and Empress show themselves very sorrowful, as having no knowledge thereof, and his Majesty caused posts to be forthwith dispatched by his chief lords in all quarters ; but they missed of their purpose. Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Ibid. 1. 15.]
Duplicate of the above. Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Ibid. I. 16.] (Another copy is in Cal. Cecil Papers, Vol. II.)
Nov. 17. 17s. HODDESDON to BURGHLEY.
My last was of the 5th inst., and being now the 17th, without any advice since my arrival, causes me to think that her Majesty's purpose is altered ; wherefore I thought good to remind you that if it be her pleasure to have any provision made either of gunpowder or saltpetre, I could now do it at a reasonable rate and better than in the summer, when there are many buyers, transport by sea being then open. I also remember what hard dealing her Majesty's officers used last summer towards the poor subjects in gathering together a sufficient quantity of wax to serve her provision, and that thereby merchants were moved to bring little or none into the realm ; whereby her Majesty's customs were impaired, and the increase of that commodity within the realm diminished. For whatever commodity the poor countryman cannot 'vent' to his most profit, that will he have least care to 'nourish' ; for which reason I have thought good to certify you that that commodity is now 'upon the falling hand' here, and if it please her Majesty to cause a provision of it to be made, I am 'preste' and ready to do it. There can be no loss, but gain, and even though I provide a great quantity more than she needs ; but without commission I dare do nothing, though I see it now so commodious and profitable. It is reported by letters from Nuremburg that Spaniards and Italians are marching towards Don John through Switzerland, by 50 or 100 in a company ; paying very bountifully for all that they take. But in this part of Germany I hear of no provision made for any service. The diet continues between the King of Poland and the town of Dantzic. The difference is chiefly upon two points ; the King demands half the customs of the town, and also that they should maintain their soldiers for three years against the Muscovite. At these two points 'is hard striking and much ado.' Add. Endd. by Burghley. 1 p. [Ibid. I. 17.]
Yours of the 28th ult. and 2nd inst. I received in one packet, with divers from the company of merchant adventurers, on the 23rd. There was also a letter from Mr. Doctor Rogers, dated at 'Bridgis' the 2nd of November, which made relation only touching the dispatch of her Majesty's letters to the King of Denmark ; which I have done by a trusty messenger named Edward Goodman, well known to the company of Muscovy. I have reminded him to solicit the King for an answer, and to return with it speedily to you, at whose hands he shall 'aspect' his charges unless before he return I have orders to defray them. I have received a letter from my factor at Antwerp, of the 10th. He writes that he was afraid that all manner of coins will be 'called' much higher. If it be so it is to be thought that this place and other parts of Germany must hereafter be driven to do the like, or else the Low Countries and France will carry away all their treasure. Therefore in my opinion it will be very needful for the company to covenant to make their payments according to the value of the coins now current, whereby they must receive the same ; 'of which' I have thought good to send you enclosed a pamphlet in print of the several coins 'of the gold,' with the value of them in 'Lubish' money ; wishing that nine of these coins might be utterly exempted both from payment and receipt. That you may better know which they are, I have put a cipher in the upper part or corner of them. The gold guilder has two ciphers in its proper stamp ; this is none of them, but rather to be noted as very good. The pistolet is current at this instant for only 44s. Lubish, and the crown of the sun for 45s., but the angel may go for 1s. higher than 'he is set in the pamphlet' of silver coins. I wish none to be accepted, and according to the rate that they are worth now, viz. : The prince or Philip's dollar at 35½s. Lubish, the 'rykes' dollar and cross dollar at 32s., the 'march styche' at 21½s., the Spanish 'ryall' at 3½s. Now it is to be noted that a mark Lubish is 16s. of that coin, and makes 2s. 8d. Flemish ; the shilling Lubish being 2d. Flemish. Also I am to remind you that the exchange goes now from hence at 25s. the pound, which is very high ; so that it would make a very bad reckoning if you promised to deliver the same as sterling money. It is requisite therefore that the money be delivered to the company according to the pound Flemish, for that is indifferent to all parties ; otherwise her Majesty might be a loser. It is also to be thought that the exchange being thus high, all men will return into England from here both gold and silver, rather than deliver their money by exchange ; by which means I think I shall make a better and profitabler reckoning for her Majesty if I deliver them the bullion uncoined than if I coin it. I wait to know your pleasure therein. If I am driven to coin it here, it would be a long and unprofitable piece of work. I think myself much bound to you for your readiness in pleasuring both me and my friends with 'parcell' of this money. I dare not 'adventure' upon much of it, for their minds may vary since their request made to me touching it ; wherefore if I may be discharged by warrant of 20,000l. Flemish, to be delivered to the merchants' adventurers, for the rest I will satisfy to her Majesty's contentment. I write this much, for as it seems by letters from the company, the merchants' adventurers should have but 15,000l. Flemish, and then I should have a great charge still upon my hands. The following news written to a friend of mine is translated word for word out of Dutch.
Occurrents.—From Rome, 12 October, 1577.
By letters from Genoa of the 5th, it is written that all the galleys which for two months have robbed and spoiled in the seas, departed on the 27th ult. from 'Spetie' ; and although two of them came to Genoa, they stayed only one day, and took their way to Naples.
It is also said that the 28 'fendells' [i.e., ensigns] are 4,600 strong, and are gone towards 'Mayland,' and thence are to go towards the Low Countries ; yet it is thought they will be otherwise appointed at 'Mayland,' where by reason of death things are not well. The French ambassador, lately mentioned, has complained to the Pope that the chief cause why the King was compelled to make peace was because he got no money either from the Catholic princes or from his subjects to maintain the war. On the 9th a post passed in the night from Naples towards Florence, who said that all the particular galleys, with many more, 70 in number, which lay there in the haven, put forth on the 7th, to transport Figueroa's soldiers towards Spezia, to go with the other soldiers for the Low Countries, and it was then consented that they should pass in companies through Savoy. If it so chance, it is to be feared that the gathering of the Spaniards is not for the Netherlands, because the Duke of Parma is 'procuring' to take upon him the title of general over such soldiers, the Duke of Savoy having excused himself on the ground that his son is not able to rule in his place. At Catania and Syracuse in Sicily there are alarms every day between the natives and the disorderly Spaniards ; and though the Sicilians meant to have rebelled '(by reason the Spaniards heretofore went about to have made a new Sicilian evensong),' and to make them a King among themselves, yet it was pacified by the Viceroy's industry.
From Venice, 18 October.
The Spaniards here give out with great cries that their King will no longer take the Low Countries to mercy, but will plague and punish them with all severity, that no other countries shall presume to do the like. In Candia the Governor has given leave to half the garrison to depart. There is no other news here at present. I mean to inform such as shall hereafter know of the bullion that I have received it from the 'minds' of Germany. I will convert it, as conveniently as I may, into coin of value, meet for payment on a sudden. If I do so, I must do it within eight days, for then a good ship is going for England ; and I think, considering the exchange, our nation will be glad to bargain with me for part of it, to take into England. This I mean to consign to Mr. Martin, with orders in writing that on receipt of it he shall pay them the true sum in sterling money ; and by this means the bullion may be brought again into the exchequer, to her Majesty's profit. Therefore I beg you give him orders to follow my directions, for I hope when you understand my meaning you will like it well, for it will be profitable and commodious without peril ; whereas otherwise there will be great loss in minting it here, and yet it is necessary that I should have orders for the coining of it. As it is, it will 'answer' no payments, and after this ship is gone, I doubt there will be no conveyance for bullion into England before March, nor shall I be able to dispatch any quantity of it in this ship. [Last sentence only in the duplicate.] Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Ibid. I. 18.]
Duplicate of the last. Headed : This is a copy of a letter sent by way of Antwerp, the 26th November, 1577 ; written the 28th. Add. Endd. 2⅓ pp. [Ibid. I. 19.]
Hamburg, 3 December, 1577.—As a rumour runs among the merchants here that they are by her Majesty's appointment to receive at reasonable 'finance' the sum of 20,000l. Flemish, I have thought good to remind you that the greatest part of the treasure remaining by me is still in bullion, which is 'out of order' to furnish any payment with ; for if the sum aforesaid or any other be promised to the merchants it may be that the bullion will not stand them in such stead to discharge their payments here, as they by the grant of the said sum make account of, and so they shall be disappointed. Wherefore, unless it be meant that it shall be returned to England in the same nature that it now is, it will be most needful for it to be coined ; which can do no harm so long as the parties who receive it are bound to 'answer' it again to her Majesty in the same coin that they receive it and by the same rate. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. I. 20.]
I wrote in my last that I would be bound to serve her Majesty with good corn powder for 10d. the lb. I am the more moved thereto now, since I am persuaded that Mr. Dale makes the offer he does of service, chiefly to cross me, as it appears by the dealing of his servants in these parts ; who cast out speeches both to the gunpowder-makers and others that he must provide for her Majesty 10,000 centners at least, every centner being 120 lbs. of our weight. This were no policy in him if he meant himself to make the provision, for by means of his report the price 'impaireth' little, though otherwise, as I am well assured, this dead time of the winter and the need of money which the makers have would have caused the price to fall above a dollar in the centner ; so this kind of dealing seems to me very strange. It is also some disgrace to me that another man's servant makes her Majesty's provision in the place where I myself am resident on her affairs. Wherefore, rather than in respect of any great profit thereby, I offer my bonds as aforesaid, and that it may plainly appear to you that it is so, if her Majesty do not like to grant the price aforesaid, but will have it provided at her own adventure, either to profit or loss, then I hereby promise (saving my commission) to make the provision as beneficial for her Majesty as Dale's servant shall do for his master, without the advantage for myself of one penny. Brief occurrents on the other side.
From Rome, 9 November, 1577.
The Spaniards give out here that their King has appointed 100,000 crowns to be sent to Paris to the behoof of the Duke of Guise and his adherents, that they may be the more willing to help him against the Netherlanders. At Naples 1,000 Spaniards have embarked in nine galleys towards Lombardy, and so for the Low Countries. Also there have embarked at Vado 2,400 of the Viceroy's soldiers, of whom 700 were in great danger through the haughtiness of one captain called Biskoglina [al. Biscoglea] in a port of Ferrara [qu. Porto Ferraio], where if Don Casto de Avolas had not "gotten a land and with the Governor of those parts assuaged the matter," they had been all slain ; whereas the matter was pacified with the loss of only 39 Spaniards. The Genoese navy are safely arrived at Genoa, very richly laden with silks.
From Venice, 15 November, 1577.
Certain ships are come hither out of 'Leavent,' among which is the navy of Ruxina [al. Luxina ; qu. Lesina] from Syria, with news that four galleys with the old King of Algiers are come to 'Cante' [qu. Zante], and so to return by ship to Constantinople. Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Ibid. I. 21.]
Dec. 22. 22s. HODDESDON to BURGHLEY.
Occurrents as in the last. These for good usance and want of other matter. I am still bold to trouble you with such stale matters, not knowing myself the truth of them ; but I am bound in duty during my stay here to impart any hearsay for your consideration ; and also my return to be shortened [sic] if it may stand with your good liking.—Hamburg, 22 December, 1577. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. I. 22.]
Dec. [?]. 23s. MEMORANDUM as to the disposal of the bullion, etc.
I have conferred with the alderman of the Steelyard, but find no likelihood from him how the money may be safely employed in Germany. He says he knows no city except Dantzic that will take any money, to be at any charge for it. Whereas Lubeck, by reason of the war with Sweden, took up certain money of noblemen and others, and paid in their need ten per cent., they having in manner paid their debt, he says they may have the same again for five per cent., and they refuse it. Which considered, and that to persuade the keeping of it beyond the seas might breed displeasure if anything should happen otherwise than well, in my opinion it will be well that the bullion may be sent home again in some good ships, and the rest, being 5,000l., may by some forbearance with Mr. Hoddesdon and his friends, answer his charges and perform the service to her Majesty. Unsigned. Endd. by L. Tomson : Advice for the bestowing of the money under the charge of Mr. Hoddesdon. ¾ p. [Ibid. I. 23.]


  • 1. Mark of suspected patriots.
  • 2. The substance of this will also be found in the Report of the Venetian Ambassador of Aug. 10, 1577. See Venice Calendar 1558-1580, no, 682.