121. The LANDGRAVE OF HESSE to the QUEEN.
Whenever we think, which is often, of your and your father's
kindness to us and our father and our brothers, we cannot but consider
how we may show our regard for you. Hitherto we have not
been able, though we hope you have no doubt of our good will ;
and in this confidence we desire to commend to you Heinrich
Westphal, the present bearer. He has lived long in our Court and
has so approved himself by loyalty and good service that we have
entrusted to him some of the principal Court offices, in which he
has acquitted himself so that we hold him dear.
Now, however, he is retiring in the desire of visiting foreign parts,
and your realm first of all ; an intention we have thought it right
by all means to promote. We beg you therefore to grant him
secure passage and deem him not unworthy of the favour with
which you are wont to receive noblemen. And whereas we have
bidden him buy some English horses for us and our wife, we
beg that he have letters for the secure transport and export of those
horses.—Marburg, 12 April 1581. (Signed) Ludwig L. zu Hessen.
P.S.—We have further heard from our secretary Nicholas Becker
that he is sending his brother Jerome, who was for some years
employed as clerk in the law-court of our brother Landgrave William,
with Heinrich Westphal. As he also wishes to see foreign parts,
and especially to live for a time under your rule, our secretary has
asked us to commend him also to you ; which for the services he
and his father have done us and our father, we could not refuse.
Add. Endd. by L. Tomson. Latin. 1½ and ¾ pp. [Germany II.
122. COBHAM to [? WALSINGHAM].
Though I have small leisure, I would not 'leave' to certify you
that Juan Roderigo de Susa has been with me, accompanied by Mr
Wade and 'Bourham.' They departed hence on the 10th inst.,
together by water towards Tours. He desired to have seen the
Queen Mother to deliver the Queen's letter, but has been persuaded
to speak first with de Brito, his King's Ambassador lying at Tours,
and to receive advice and further intelligence from him. But it
seems he does not propose to stay with him, being no great friendship
between them, as he pretends. And I doubt he will not conveniently
meet with the 'Viscount Vymyos.'
It is thought that Monsieur will repair to 'Bourgys,' and so to
'Shattiou Tyrry,' towards Paris.
The King is returned hither, in good liking. I have had audience
of him to-day, only for 'matter of a compliment' on account of his
absence and sickness, and so to 'use a visitation' in her Majesty's
The King is gathering money by all means. As this bearer will
not stay, I cannot further 'enlarge' these affairs.—Blois, 13 April
Holograph. Add. and endt. gone. 1 p. [France V. 52.]
123. "A copy of a letter sent from Antwerp on the
15th day of this present month of April, anno 1581, concerning
a certain conspiracy of the wife of M. d'Aussy, brother to
Bossu ; which conspiracy should have been executed in Brussels
upon the magistrates and Captain Tempell, etc., on the first
day of May next coming, except God had prevented the same ;
in manner and form following."
The wife of d'Aussi having got a passport to go to Bergen, to
persuade the inhabitants to 'hold of our side,' has under that pretext
made a league with the Prince of Parma. And the better to bring
the pretence to pass, she made alliance with a certain miller,
who kept a paper mill thereabouts, who has conveyed letters from
one to the other on all sides, as appears by certain attestations, and
also that he was often absent and not seen for the space of two or
three weeks, in the affairs of the said wife of d'Aussy, who made him
many fair promises. And when the miller asked what would become
of him if ever he were taken, she promised him that he should not
be molested. "Yet nevertheless," said she, "if it fortuned you
were caught, take this little root and eat the same ; then shall you
not suffer any grief or pain at all, although they racked you."
Hereupon it chanced that the Scottish soldiers at Vilvorde 'did
mutinate' for lack of pay ; which being given to understand to the
Prince of Parma, he sent one of his drummers to the Scots with
letters. Which drummer not knowing his way to Vilvorde
was directed to the said miller to be guided by him. The
miller sent his brother with him to direct him to Vilvorde.
The soldiers receiving the letters would not open them but in the
presence of their captain ; and the captain opening them in their
presence, found therein many fair words and promises, as we may
easily presume it. But the soldiers hearing it, called out loud that
they were not 'mutinated' for any other purpose but for money,
and that they would become no traitors, but remain loyal to the
Prince of Orange and the States till death ; and therefore took the
drummer and the miller's brother prisoners, and transported them
to Brussels ; and being arrived there, delivered them into the hands
of Captain Tempell and the lieutenants, who at once examined the
drummer, but could learn nothing of him, for he knew not what the
They therefore called the miller's brother, and asked him where
he dwelt, and who had sent him with the drummer.
He answered that his brother the miller, dwelling in the 'way of
Brussels' had commanded it to him ; and therefore it was at once
commanded that the miller should be set before the same captains ;
who being brought before them, very much desired the soldiers
that they would be so good as to restore his purse, which they had
taken from him on the way. This they were not willing to do.
Then he besought that they would at least restore the small root
which was in his purse, which likewise they refused ; saying that
if it were good for him, it would also not be bad for them. Thus
leaving the miller before the captains, they went to doctors and
potticaries to enquire what virtue the root might have ; who
answered that it was the 'vehements' poison that might be found.
So that if the miller had according to the persuasion of d'Aussy's
wife eaten it, he would also by experience have found her words true,
viz. that he should not have been grieved with any punishment,
pain, or racking.
The miller being racked in such sort that he hung for the space
of two hours in the pulley, would yet confess nothing. But being
let down, when they threatened to pull or hang him again, he said :
"If you rack and punish me to death, I will confess nothing. But
assure me my life, and I will not only 'declare you of Vilvorde'
which you now ask me, but other matters of no small importance
concerning your persons and the city of Brussels."
The magistrates considering that for all the torments they had
done to him he would declare nothing, concluded to 'warrant' him
The miller being so assured by them, asked for the Governor and
desired that all the other magistrates should 'part' a little aside,
which being done he declared all the treason saying : "What will
you ask of me? Rather enquire these matters of d'Aussy, who is
the chief of this ;" saying further that the said conspiracy and
murder was to have been brought to pass in manner as follows.
The said d'Aussy should on 'May evening' have bidden to a
banquet Captain Tempell and all the magistrates in Brussels. When
they should have been set at the board, a post should have come
before the gate of the city ; the keys should have been 'fett' of
Captain Tempell to let him in and 8 or 12 men should have gone
to open the gates, whereas the captain and magistrates had made
good cheer and were merry, and should have let into the city a
great company of soldiers, who should have slain the watch. No
less was 'attending for' the captain and magistrates, for they
should have been murdered by some who were to be prepared
thereto whilst they were making merry ; and then all the citizens
and others accounted to be Protestants.
The magistrates being informed of this, immediately Captain
Tempell went to d'Aussy's house, and found him with his wife in
bed. He caused both to rise, and carried them and all their family
D'Aussy has confessed all the 'premisses' and says his wife
persuaded him to it. She should have been 'by the justice'
executed three or four days ago, but being big with child is for a
Captain Tempell has sent for 12 soldiers out of every company
that lies in 'Mechell,' Vilvoorde and those quarters, to come to
Brussels, but to what intent he does so, we know not.
The common speech is that the priests or spiritualty have also
meddled in the 'premisses.'
About 30 persons have been taken prisoners, and I think that ere
long the number of them will be augmented.
Copy (perhaps translation). 6 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XIV. 51.]
124. HODDESDON to WALSINGHAM.
I have received yours of the 6th, and touching the delays used
by the States and town of Antwerp, cannot but marvel whence they
proceed ; especially considering this manner of dealing is contrary
both to the resolution taken in Holland and to the promise made
afterwards here, when about 6 weeks ago I urged the particular
bonds of this town 'to be delivered' out of hand. At that time
M. Junius told me the matter was fully agreed upon, and order
given to the Pensionary Van der Wercke for the dispatch thereof.
I had the like answer from Van der Wercke, who further promised
to bring me this town's particular obligations within 5 or 6 days.
Since then I have not dealt in the matter, for at the same instant a
certain form of bonds was brought to Mr Gilpin, with order that he
should wholly solicit the cause ; wherewith I am now, as then, very
well contented, and thank you for easing me of 'this pains,' which
being of itself troublesome, might through such continual delays be
made more tedious. I will not fail to hasten forward his departure
into Holland and furnish him with such directions as I am best
able, and as shall seem most needful.—Antwerp, 15 April 1581.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XIV. 52.]
125. DU PLESSIS-MORNAY to WALSINGHAM.
I should have answered your letter sooner, but I was awaiting
that of M. de la Fontaine, to which you referred me, and it reached
me only to-day. Moreover I believe it was only 'the second application'
(secondes de rencharge), for he mentions a packet which I
have not received.
Touching the repayment, I think he will have fully informed you
how everything has passed. The goods are still in being (en essence)
but they will not get from them a third of the cost which have
been necessary, and what has been spent in travelling cannot be
recovered. Meanwhile, as soon as the peace was announced, I sent
to the King of Navarre to have an assignment of that sum ; and I
expect an answer about the beginning of May. To hasten it, I
will send an express messenger, who will start to-morrow. In short
I will omit nothing in my power to satisfy you with all speed.
You know it is a question of public affairs, and our friends there
can bear witness that my private matters have had nothing to do in
it. Nay, I assure that if my own affairs were as easy as but for
our common miseries they might be, I would willingly undertake
it myself, subject to having recourse at leisure to the public.
Kindly therefore induce those who are affected by it to have patience
while I am labouring to content them.—Antwerp, 15 April 1581.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XIV. 53.]
126. The PRINCE OF PARMA to the QUEEN.
I received by the present bearer your letter of March 12, written
with a view to my liberation of Daniel Rogers, your envoy to the
Emperor and other German princes, who was captured on the way
by some of the king's troops.
I will reply that I have always desired to do you service in all
just matters within my power. But having told you in my last that
Rogers was taken by the soldiers when in pursuit of the enemy,
and found by his own papers, written in his own hand, to be
practising against the king, while on the other hand he greatly
excused himself, I could do no less than ascertain the truth more
plainly, and sent councillors to hear how it all happened.
And as it was discovered that there was matter touching not
only the king's Low Countries, but also other his states and
realms, I could not but impart it to his Majesty, advertising him
further how I had been requested on your part to send back the
prisoner, as your minister sent to the Emperor and other princes.
I am awaiting his answer, and hope to have it shortly, not doubting
that it will be that which the treaties demand, and that all reasonable
satisfaction will be given you, for the sake of the amity, alliance,
and ancient good neighbourhood which are between your Majesties.
Whereto I will willingly give my aid for the duty of my office.
As for the intention you expressed of applying the same treatment
to Don Bernardino de Mendoza if I do not set Rogers at liberty, or
send him back to England to be chastised if he deserves it, I cannot
persuade myself that so just a princess, who knows (as she writes)
the laws of war and what is becoming to the dignity of kings, should
avenge the detention that Rogers merits (until his affair is judged
and the king's will known), on such a person as Don Bernardino,
the king's ambassador to you, being under your protection
and safeguard, and who consequently cannot be touched without
violating the law of nations and the treaties above mentioned.
On the other hand, Rogers has not those qualifications. He was not
even sent to the king, or to me as his lieutenant ; but rather too
much (trop bien) into Germany, as has been said ; two very dissimilar
cases. Nor has Mendoza given any offence, or done anything to be
punished for the fault of another.
On all these grounds I doubt not that recognising the reasons why
I cannot release Rogers without the knowledge of his Majesty, you
will not take it amiss if I await his resolution, which cannot be long
delayed. Meanwhile I assure that no wrong shall be done' to your
minister. On the contrary, he has received the best of treatment
up to now, and will do so, solely in consideration of his being your
minister. And as soon as I hear the king's decision I will let him
know ; being assured that on the king's side nothing will be done
to violate in the smallest point the treaties of peace and alliance,
nor will he or I do anything that you can in the least resent.—
Valenciennes, 15 April 1581. (Signed) Alesso Farnese.
Add. Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [Ibid. XIV. 54.]
127. STOKES to WILSON.
My last to you was the 9th. For this week the speeches are as
The Malcontents have divided their camp into two. One half
lies between Douay and Cambray and the other between Cambray
and the frontier. Both are in great distress for want of victuals
and forage, for all is destroyed in those parts.
The Prince of Parma lying at Valenciennes has received a letter,
from the French king in which it seems there is some news to the
liking of the Malcontents ; for upon the receipt of it they made
a great show of gladness in shooting off their great artillery
and ringing their bells in Valenciennes. It is said that the
French king has written that Monsieur's coming to these parts is
not with his consent.
M. de 'Verfack' lies with his forces between Noyon and Cambray,
well intrenched. The Malcontents set upon them, and had the
repulse, for they found them in better order than they made
account of, so they were forced to retire with some loss of soldiers
and captains hurt.
The speech continues that Cambray is in great want of many
things, and that the Malcontents 'lie sharply' about it, and in hope
to have it, for the cannon marches to it, so it is much feared that
town will be lost.
Though agreement is made with the mutinied soldiers at Cortryk,
M. de 'Swevingam' and M. de Bours are both kept prisoners in
the castle by command of the Prince of Parma ; for it seems they
have received a great deal of tribute money from many villages
thereabouts to pay the soldiers, and have kept it to themselves, and
not paid one soldier. So they must make account of this money
before they are released. They say it is 100,000 gilders that they
have received.—Bruges, 16 April 1581.
Add. Endd. 1¼ pp. [Hol. and Fl. XIV. 55.]
128. Proclamation by the King of Spain of amnesty for
those who took part in Don Antonio's rebellion ; with certain
exceptions, including Don Antonio, the Count of Vimioso, Dom
Manuel de Portugal, Dom Pedro, and Dom Fernando, Dom Jorge
and Dom Antonio de Meneses, Diogo Botelho, Antonio Moniz de
Barreto, Joam Rodriguez de Sousa, Duarte de Crasto, Antonio de
Brito Pimentel, Manuel da Fonseca Nobriga, Dom Joam de Portugal,
Bishop of Guarda, Frey Manuel Dacosta, Frey Estevam Leitão, etc.
—Thomar, 15 April 1581. (Countersigned), Symão Gonçalvez
Endd. by L. Tomson. Portuguese. Printed by Marcos Borges,
Lisbon. 5 pp. folio. [Portugal I. 49.]
129. MS. copy of above, in a later hand. Endd. 7½ pp.
[Ibid. I. 49a.]
130. COBHAM to the SECRETARIES.
After the king was come hither, I sought to have access to
'accomplish' with him in her Majesty's name upon the recovery from
his sickness. I have 'at this present' certified to her the speeches
he used to me, which were in effect words tending to the show of
Since then, he has daily communicated with his Council more
than he had ordinarily done heretofore ; but none is so private with
him as M. Villequier, whom the Queen Mother likewise entertains,
as a man doing good offices between their Majesties.
The minions returned with the king, continuing in their accustomed
favour, followed by divers gentlemen. Lavalette has the
M. Strozzi has returned from Monsieur's Court, accompanying
the Count of Vimioso to Tours, where he left him, repairing himself
to their Majesties, to whom he has related what the Count
delivered to him, and also of Monsieur's desire for the enterprise of
Portugal. Whereon the king has given order for the receiving of
the Count when he comes to this town, and to give him public
audience. He has commanded his officers to prepare lodgings and
'diet' for him, which the king purposes to defray, contrary to the
Juan Battista Taxis, the Spanish king's agent here, has had
audience twice, at which he has complained of Monsieur's troops
for the succour of Cambray ; affirming it was a kind of hostility and
breach of amity between his master and the king, and beseeching
him to take order therein.
To this I am informed the king answered that he had dissuaded
his brother from that enterprise, but finding him so obstinately bent
on it, he thought it good rather to suffer him to enter into some
foreign action than to make war with him ; being tired of civil dissensions.
As for himself, he was desirous to live in peace with the
princes his neighbours, and to maintain the amity between himself
and the Spanish king. If the contrary happened, he doubted
not but he would find power sufficient in France to withstand his
invasion, and to welcome him when he thought good.
Taxis further moved his Majesty that the preparations he understood
were 'addressed' for the affairs of Portugal might be stayed,
since his master was received for absolute king, by consent of the
people. To which the king said it was a right of the queen his
mother, whom he could not abandon in so just a cause.
The agent being in this sort departed from the king, not much
contented, repaired to Queen Mother, with whom he dealt in like
manner, being answered in effect with such words as he had
received from the king, saving that when he required that Count
Vimioso might not be admitted and entertained by their Majesties,
being a subject and rebel to his master, she, somewhat moved,
answered him that it was not yet proved that his said master was
justly King of Portugal yet, for there were others who had cause to
seek to make good their rights as well as he. Therefore since the
count was come into her son's realm, which is a free country, he
should be received as appertained to a person of his quality.
This much I thought good to advertise you, as it has been
imparted to me, desiring you to inform her Majesty thereof.
The Bishop of Glasgow had audience the same first day when
the Spanish agent was admitted. He lamented to his Majesty not
only the Scottish queen's detainment in prison, but also that the
Queen took the Scottish king's rebels into her protection, as the
Earl Morton and such others ; and offered the king very hard
conditions, threatening him with a 'power,' which was sent to the
borders of Scotland, and conducted by the Earl of Huntingdon.
He besought the king that since she dealt in that sort, he would,
according to the ancient alliance between his ancestors and the
Crown of Scotland, assist the Scottish king, and receive him into
To this the king answered, as I am informed, that there was so
good intelligence between him and her Majesty, that he could not
understand and deal in anything that might impeach their entire
amity. Besides, he would in no way meddle in any matter which
should prejudice the treaty of marriage.
It seems by this that the Bishop of Glasgow meddles in the
Scottish king's affairs, 'showing' to be his ambassador ; whereof it
is supposed if her Majesty would 'take acknowledgment,' the
Scottish king would not avow him.
The Pope's nuncio, the Spanish king's agent, and this bishop,
join in their audience and affairs. The ambassador of Venice seems
not 'to run so thoroughly that course.'
M. Strozzi has returned to Tours ; it is thought, to accompany Count
Vimioso to this Court. The count has spoken with young Lansac,
Saint-Luc, and Count Rochefoucault, by whom he has been feasted,
and has received their oaths and promises for the enterprise
of Portugal with men and ships. Strozzi has 'protested to'
adventure his life, honour, and ability in the action of Portugal.
He has sent me a 'note' for the ordering of the enterprise, a copy
of which you shall receive herewith. I have been further requested
by him to add to or alter it, which I have deferred to do till I have
been directed by you. Let me have an answer of this, as also of the
proffer M. Strozzi made for the service of her Majesty, which I
signified in my former letter.
Their Majesties have been somewhat in doubt what might be the
cause of the assembly of all the deputies of the reformed religion,
appointed to be held on the 25th inst. at Montauban, where the
King of Navarre means to be also.
The Prince of Condé has made 50,000 crowns of the king's salts,
having deferred the publication of the Edict of peace till they were
sold and the money paid to him. The necessity of his state, after
so many demonstrations to their Majesties, compelled him to take
this means to help himself.
Fervaques, it is certified, is lodged by Peronne, in a house of Mme
de Humières', purposing to fight with the Malcontents : being presuaded
that it is better to hazard his life than to return without proof
made of his valour. Notwithstanding, it is bruited in the Court
that he has retired.
There are come hither the principal of the chief presidents and
procureurs of the Court of Parlement of Paris, the Courts of Aids, of
Accounts and of the Requests. Their names, and the cause of their
extraordinary coming to the king at present, you will find in the note
I hear from Lyons that on the 11th inst. a great wild wolf passed
through the city with fearful howling, wherewith the people were
astonied ; but it was pursued and slain by the boatmen. Whereon
they prognosticate some ill chance to happen to the city.
Poyrier, one of the chief captains of the murderers on St.
Bartholomew's Day, having been prisoner two years in the Castle
of Amboise, at the request of his friends is now released, to live
privately in a monastery.
It is advertised from Spain that the king has given a pension of
6,000 crowns, out of the bishopric of Seville, to Cardinal Riario,
and a commandery of St. Jaques to the cardinal's brother. There
has been an earthquake in Seville, where they die of the plague.
A rumour has been spread in Spain that 25 English ships were
arrived at the straits of Magellan, having made there a fort, and
procured the people of that country to rebel. Also that Count
Olivares, the governor of Milan, and the 'Visidores' of Naples and
Sicily had embarked in the company of Cardinal Riario in the
galleys that were to depart from Seville. Likewise that the Duke
of Terranova had arrived at Palamos, where he stayed for the
king's letters patent to authorise him to be Viceroy of Catalonia.
It was thought in Spain that the Italian companies would be sent
back, and that a terzo of Spaniards would be sent to Milan. The
Duke of Osuna is 'named' to be Viceroy of Naples.
Signor Ruberto Altemps, with his wife, 'have' been sent by the
said Viceroy into Calabria, to be present at the 'birth' of the
Princess of Bisignano, and to see that the matter be not counterfeit ;
because the Duke of Bisignano has not had any child for a
long time, and after his decease and failure of issue, the dukedom
returns to King Philip.
It is understood that the Duke of Sora is placed among the
nobility of Naples by virtue of the King of Spain's letters, having
larger privileges granted him by King Philip than any other prince
has in like case enjoyed.
The ambassador of Portugal has publicly with the ancient
accustomed solemnity done homage to the Pope on behalf of King
Philip for the kingdom of Portugal ; which being performed, he is
appointed by the king to repair into Spain, as may be thought with
The Pope 'pretends' to take from the Spanish king the ordinary
payments levied on the clergy in Spain toward the maintenance of
the galleys for the war against the Infidels, from which the king
receives yearly 1,200,000 crowns, and from another manner of payment
there comes yearly into his coffers 800,000 crowns : likewise
of the Cruzada he made 200,000 crowns yearly. These receipts
from the clergy had been heretofore confirmed to him by the Pope's
grants from three years to three years. Upon their withdrawal by
the Pope sundry discourses and judgements are made.
The Pope sends to the Emperor of Muscovy by the Muscovite
ambassador, who is upon his return, a hallowed rose, twelve 'pair'
of beads, valued at 100 crowns apiece, the image of our Lady
esteemed at 700 crowns, and many Agnos Dei. Father Possavino,
with three other Jesuits, 'are' sent to meet the ambassador in the
confines of Poland, purposing to obtain a passport for him from the
King of Poland, and so to accompany him to the Emperor of
Muscovy, having commission from the Pope to deal with the
Muscovite in matter of religion.
The French ligier ambassador before his departure from Rome
dined with the Pope at his little table, being accompanied from
Rome by the Cardinal of Sens.
Monsr Bolognetto, who was lately nuncio at Venice, has arrived
at Rome suddenly ; whereon many comments are made, but
nothing is certainly known.
The Pope has lately sent to the Signiory of Venice to have
certain of his ministers visit the schools and other places, for
enquiry and reformation in matters of religion. The Signiory
have granted that the same may extend to monasteries and no
otherwise ; whereon it is suspected there will grow some little
unkindness that way. The Bishop of Verona is constituted
by the Signiory visitor of those monasteries, being a Venetian
They have discovered in Genoa that sundry noblemen's houses
are infected with the plague.
The opinion is conceived in Italy that Don Antonio is dead.
The Turk has sent 30 galleys towards 'Mar Maggiore,' having
appointed 30 more to pass into 'Tripolis in Syria,' for the Arabs
of those parts were in rebellion. The Aga of the 'Janissari' and
the 'Beljarbi' of Greece with many Turkish troops were 'assigned'
to go to Persia.
* The Pope has appointed Monsr Bolognetto, who has left Venice,
to go as nuncio to Poland. The Bishop of Rimini is looked for
about the beginning of next month as nuncio here in Monsr
Dandino's stead. The Bishop of Lodi is appointed nuncio to
Spain. The matter between the Venetians and the Pope, about the
Inquisition, is appeased, and the Pope sends Monsr Campejo to
reside as nuncio at Venice. Monsr Sta. Croce is on his way to the
Emperor's Court to be nuncio there.
Hamilton who murdered the Regent of Scotland has returned
from the Prince of Parma, having passed through Fervaques' troops.
He was sent from hence by the Spanish agent.—Blois, 20 April
The paragraphs after * appear to belong to a different letter from
the earlier part, though written on the same day. They are add. and
endd. with date. There is on another leaf an endt. in the hand of
L. Tomson : 20 Apr. 1581, from Sir H. Cobham, C. Vimioso ; which
seems to belong to the earlier part. The pars. referring to Vimioso
and Taxis have marginal headings by Walsingham. 4½ pp.
[France V. 56.]