Elizabeth: May 1581, 1-5

Pages 145-154

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 15, 1581-1582. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1907.

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May 1581, 1-5

May 1. 157. The DUKE OF CLEVES to the QUEEN.
We learn from your letters of March 22 that you desire the liberation of your ambassador, Daniel Rogers, to be obtained by means of a request from us to the Prince of Parma, having seen heretofore our desire to gratify you. Also that you deem a great injury has been done you because the ambassador was illegally captured, not without loss of our credit, in our territory, and taken elsewhere, and moreover by a vassal of our own, whose property lies in our jurisdiction, and who should be punished, if not in person at least in goods, if things were done in the faith of our old treaties and by right of our friendship with you. To which we reply that we are greatly annoyed at the violation in our territory of ambassadorial rights as well as of our prerogatives, and should like nothing so much as lawfully to avenge the crime on the delinquents, both because we know it pertains to us and because we are ready to oblige you as we have always done, in even graver matters. But this misfortune to your ambassador your wisdom will lead you to set down not to us or our lieutenants but rather to the wrongs of this present civil war in the Low Countries, nor will you hastily judge that we have swerved from our honour, or done anything alien to treaties and amity. The troops, both of the Catholic king and of the States come out of the forts which defend the frontier towns and camps, depredating and infesting our own and other neighbouring territories by nightly raids (though we do our best to protect them by troops hired specially for the purpose) and the public roads are rendered thereby at times less safe. Again, and more especially, Rogers after arriving in our absence at this town of Cleves, gave no notice whatever to our lieutenants and councillors of his arrival or of his projected journey, still less sought from them the benefit of public faith. Further those who carried him off are no vassals of ours, nor so far as we know do they possess a field or a cottage in our territory. Meanwhile they will not escape punishment if our people catch them. The castle of Bredefort where your ambassador is detained does not belong to us, but to the Catholic king, though it is mortgaged to the lord of Anholt. And although this is the position of affairs, and we have, upon your one letter (for hitherto we have received no more) neglected nothing which could conduce to Rogers's liberation, having written to Parma some days before your letter reached us, we will urge him afresh, and willingly strive to further promote the liberation in so far as these difficult times allow. We are confident that what you promise as to Norris's men not injuring our subjects in future, will have effect.—Cleves, 1 May 1581. (Signed) Willelmus Dux Juliæ. (Countersigned) L. Bramius. Add. Endd. by L. Tomson. Lat. 2 pp. [Germany. II. 18.]
May 2. 158. REPORT, addressed to BURGHLEY, "concerning the demands of my LORD AMBASSADOR OF SPAIN against the executors of BENEDICT SPINOLA."
The ambassador requires the heirs to give him 'in account' of £10,860 8s. 4d. for the value of 121,000 'ryalls of plate,' which came in the ship St. Nicholas of Bilbowe, master Lopis Delaserra, and 280,000 which came in the azabres named the St. Lucas, master John Corde, and the azabres named the Conception, master Santo de Galbano, which are for the account of Lopis del Campo ; 'which the said Spinola did pass them' and received payment from the Queen and the Chamber of London, 'as they had been appertaining' to merchants of 'Jeone' [Genoa] and never gave any account at all to Lopis del Campo ; at 6¼d. the ryall. Item, 44,000 ryalls which came in the ship of Lopis Delaserra, for the account of Fernando de 'Civilia' - £1,154 3s. 4d.
Item, for freight of 80 tons of 'Melesia' [qu. meleza, molasses] received out of a ship of Valencia named the Christopher at £4 the ton - £320 0s. 0d.
Item, Spinola received from the Commissioners of Leaden Hall for the freight of the 'Malasia' and for customs, cellar-room, and other charges (which he ought not to receive of the subjects of the King of Spain, but if he had been at such charges he should have imbursed himself of the 'Melasia' and not of the said subjects, therefore 'they' must make restitution) £617 12s. 5d.
Item, for freight of 75 tons of Romish alum received out of the hulk St. Jacob of 'Enchuson,' master William Fredrickson £150 0s. 0d.
Item, for freight of 18 barrels of 'Cochenelia' at 10s. the barrel, and 9 seron of 'sauce of Parilia' at 6s. 8d. the seron - £12 0s. 0d.
Item, for freight of 38 bags of pepper and 2 bags of cloves and a chest of 'mases' at 6s. 8d. apiece amounts to - £13 13s. 4d.
Item, for freight of 100 tons of oil received out of the ship named Henry Mellis, and that named the Andreas, master Claus Lucas, and the George, master—Ranavles, which was stayed at Plymouth - £400 0s. 0d.
Item, for freight of 123 chests of ryalls, of which 59 came in the ship of Lopes Delaserra, and 64 in the azabres, at 25 ducats (although Spinola had reimbursed himself from the owners at '3' dobble [sic]) which I account at 7s. the ducat £1076 5s. 0d.
Which thoroughly considered, the ambassador required for the more 'probability' of the defence of Mr Spinola, that Mr Acerbo and one Lewis de Pace might peruse Spinola's books and reckoning ; to which Hannibal Spinola yielded ; and after sundry conferences they reported as follows, by which the greater part of my Lord's demands are 'cleared' and only a little freight remains in question : The report of Mr Acerbo and Mr Lues Depase to the Ambassador.
Whereas your honour and Hannibal Spinola as procurator of the heirs of Benedict Spinola committed to us to 'oversee' the books and writings of the said Benedict, upon 'pretence' that you had against his heirs, as by a memorial given to us by John Swigo, and to report to you what was found ; we find in the end that in truth Spinola 'recovered' of the Queen 2,478,431 ryalls in 119 chests, of which 51 chests were stayed among 59 under the charge of Lopis Delaserra, and 50 among 64 chests under the charge of Andrew Pinione and Francis Diesse, and 18 chests among 32 under the charge of Peter 'Subiordo' belonging to divers merchants of Lucca and 'Geane,' by whom Benedict had charge to recover ; that is :—
176,333 ryalls by a procuration of 'Gwinisie' and 'Benardyne.'
110,290 " " 'Bonivisie.'
165,000 " " Stephen Spinola.
22,000 " " Baptist Spinola.
78,431 " for Catania and 'Dorry.'
361,973 " for Francis Spinola and his sons.
630,680 " for 'Grilly' and Spinola.
579,225 " for Baptist 'Lumelino.'
110,293 " for John Anthonio Negri.
104,118 " for Gentili.
140,000 " for 'Grannaldie.'
Which procurations being perused with the 'Cargazons' we find that the 630,680 ryalls of Grillie and Spinola should be not more than 187,441 and the 579,225 for Baptist Lumelino 'no more but' 75,490, so that the procuration of the former is in excess by 443,239, and the parcel for the latter by 503,755. Therefore our opinion is, if Hannibal delivers you a sufficient copy of those two procurations, and declare to have received the same sum by order of Grillie and Spinola, and Baptist Lumelino, the heirs should be discharged of what you claim that Benedict recovered appertaining to subjects of the King of Spain. Also it appears in Spinola's books that they have paid £55 to Bernardyne Derewella for freight of 'Melasia' and £74 4s. 7d. to William Fredrickson for freight of alum, and £42 0s. 5d. they say were paid to Fredrickson at Lisbon for the same. Our opinion is that if it so be Hannibal gives you a sufficient certificate of the payment, the heirs should be discharged. Likewise, for a parcel of £5 for freight of 15 barrels of cochineal, and £12 10s. Hannibal says they were paid to John Barnes and his company in 'Dartmore' [qu. Dartmouth], and £64 5s. 8d. to the commissioners for freight of 50 tons of oil, and £56 5s. to the same for freight of 'melasia.' If Hannibal shall give you a certificate from the commissioners that they have received the money, the heirs shall be quit. As to the freight of 119 chests of ryalls we find neither by the books or other writings of Spinola that they were paid ; though Hannibal says that out of the sum of £66,236, which 'amounted' all the ryalls, £780 9s. was deducted for expenses made by her Majesty, as by the agreement with Sir Thomas Gresham. Hannibal says that in the £780 9s. is conprised the freight of the ryalls, which we do not find. Our opinion rather is that if he does not give you a better satisfaction, the heirs ought to pay the freight. With this report the ambassador in writing confesses himself satisfied and content for so much discharged of his demands, and refers the rest to some better proof. Since which time, for proof of the payment left in suspense by their report, Hannibal has produced before us a testimonial under the oath of Thomas Cely, servant to Sir Thomas Gresham, at the time of the restraint, in which the copy of the account of all the Lucchese and Genoese moneys is set down verbatim as they are in Sir T. Gresham's books ; wherein it appears that the £780 9s. which Mr Acerbo and Mr de Pace did not allow to be deducted for freight was most certainly deducted, and that Mr Spinola did not receive the whole sum due to the Lucchese and Genoese by that amount. He further presented a testimonial under the hand of Sir Edward Horsey, declaring that one Lopis Delaserra had received 26,866 ryalls for freight and charges, and other good and sufficient proofs, agreeing with the book of Mr Benedict Spinola, whereby it plainly appears to us that Spinola's executors are not chargeable for any restitution. This we have made known to the ambassador, who seems to be very well contented therewith, and is willing that we should signify some discharge to the heirs and executors as well for their safety here as elsewhere ; requiring nevertheless the copies of the procurations of Grilly and Spinola and of Baptist Lumelino, and of the testimonial of Thomas Cely, out of Sir T. Gresham's books, and also the copies of one made by Sir Edward Horsey and another by Edward Osborne, alderman, Thomas Egerton and others touching the three parcels of £5, £64 5s. 4d. and £56 5s. 0d., amounting to £125 10s. 4d., which we think reasonable, and so require Hannibal Spinola to deliver the same.—London, 2 May 1581. (Signed) Thomas Wilford, Wm. Towrson, Richard May, Wm. Hewytt. Endd. in Burghley's hand : The report of the money received by Benedict Spinola, that belonged to the 'Januwiss,' and how it was paid out. 3 pp. [Spain I. 67.]
May 2. 159. "The KING OF NAVARRE'S INSTRUCTIONS, sent by his Secretary to the MAYOR OF BORDEAUX."
M. de la Marsillière will communicate on behalf of the King of Navarre to the Court, Mayor, and Jurats of the city of Bordeaux the reason of Monsieur's departure, which is on account of the affairs of the Low Countries, and the regret which they have felt at separating before giving the necessary perfecting to the execution of the peace. Things have got so far that they need have no doubt of a speedy and happy issue, to which the King will use his efforts, and bring about a result conformable to his wish and inclination. He has been as far as Bergerac to meet the Prince, who is much disposed to employ himself in all good matters, having come to pay his respects to Monsieur, whom he has promised to busy himself in completing what remains for the effectuating of the peace. He begs them to be quite sure of both, and not to think that the absence of Marshal de Biron involves any danger to them. On the contrary, he will relieve him of all suspicion, and promises on his honour not to permit any enterprise to take place in any quarter whatsoever. He wishes to become their protector and guarantee against anything they may be afraid of ; and begs them to do good justice, and promptly advertise him or the queen his wife being at Nérac of whatever they deem to belong to their security, repose, and preservation. To complete what remains, M. Bellièvre has stayed and awaits M. Villeroy. Meanwhile the King of Navarre is going to the meeting at Montauban, of which he begs them to take no suspicion, inasmuch as it is held for the good and confirmation of the peace. The king having approved it, he will prevent anything being done there contrary to his service. The reason why it has been necessary to summon it is that neither the deputies of the Reformed churches from the Loire, nor those from Lower Languedoc, Dauphiné, and Provence were able to take part in the peace negotiations, and were discontented ; and they must be made to understand the cause of this that they may the more willingly receive it. Also it has to be confirmed by the unanimous resolution of all, and order has to be taken that no contravention of it be committed, but that all may unite against any that would break it, and that justice may be done. Also to settle those of Lower Languedoc and Dauphiné, who take their stand upon several difficulties ; who must be reconciled if the peace is to be universal. In short, he begs them to have complete confidence that he has no other intention from the day of his arrival than to effect and establish what has been begun, for the repose of this state, especially of this province, and to assure them particularly of his friendship. —Longua [sic, qu Langon], 2 May 1581. (Signed) Henry. Copy (sent by Cobham). Endd. by Walsingham. Fr. 1¼ pp. [France V. 65.]
May 5. 160. The FRENCH KING to the QUEEN.
Acknowledgement of a letter sent by the present bearer, John Rodriguez da Sousa, and commendation of him.—Blois, 5 May 1581. (Signed) Henry, (countersigned) Brulart. Broad sheet. Add. Endd. by L. Tomson. Fr. 8 ll. [France. V. 66.]
May 5.
Letters de C. de M. vii. 375.
Similar to the last. (Signed) Caterine. Broad sheet. Add. Endd. by L. Tomson. Fr. 8 ll. [Ibid. V. 67.]
May 5. 162. W. WAAD to WALSINGHAM.
The bearer hereof delivered me a letter from you at Paris, by reason the Portuguese left his 'conduct' and went straight from Rouen to Blois, where since their coming others from that country have arrived, to assure the king of the devotion of the commons, and specially of a place of importance which will be ready to receive such forces as he will send. The King of Spain labours hard to agree with Don Antonio, whereto he employs the means of an uncle to the Constable who is here ; offering him Calabria and Puglia, as 'Roderygos' himself told me, or if he had liefer, the 'Indians.' Adding that it 'stood her Majesty upon' to 'let' that agreement with effectual comfort ; for if King Antonio, despairing of aid, should fall to accord, all the forces of France, Spain, and Portugal would be bent against her. Divers marvellously mistrust this dealing to be but dallying, both calling to mind what is past and seeing the shameful issue of the 'voyage' of the Low Countries, so long borne in hand and broke off now when the poor city of Cambray by the trust it had in the French has brought them about to despair of any composition with the enemy, abandoned by those they hoped in. And the Portugal is so unskilful of the manner his nation uses in negotiating, so full of vanity and opinion, that his nature and complexion 'jumps fit' with the French humour. Strozzi is needy, and of no great capacity, Lansac dangerous, Saint-Luc long since in these parts for purpose [sic]. Besides the evil opinions the Portuguese are seasoned with here of her Majesty and those of the Religion give evil tokens, especially at a time when they treat with us so openly. Fervaques, when he came to pass the river, understanding that 1,800 horse were on the other side to receive him, set there the end of his journey, and himself with as great shame of the issue, as with 'miscontentment he gave of his conduct,' is retired into Normandy. M. Rohan was in this town on Mayday, where divers of the captains are. The soldiers are already on this side the river Seine, for they crossed between Passy and Melun. So the Fleming may use a proverb long since current in Italy : La disperazione de' Italianiè la speranza che pongono ne gli Francesi. But as this Low Country enterprise came to 'scuse' the first pretence to help Portugal, so that is again revived to quench the reproach wherewith every man's mouth is out of favour with this dishonourable end of so long a brag. Howbeit, it is said that the Marquis of Elbeuf will take upon him the enterprise. By letters of the 28th ult. it is advertised from the King of Navarre's Court that he has quite given over dealing in this 'voyage' of the Low Countries, and will not suffer his wife to come to Court. He is not pleased with her for importuning him to be reconciled to Marshal Biron. On the 29th he went to meet the Prince of Condé, who awaits him at Bergerac ; thence to retire to his government, and fortify himself there the best he can. His Highness is displeased with the Prince for refusing to come to him. The Duke of Guise is still in this town, and has been three times to 'Gallion' to the Cardinal of Bourbon, who is assembling all the clergy of Normandy. The like assembly of the 'Ecclesiastical' is made in Britanny, Anjou, and Touraine, which being extraordinary is suspected. In the same letters from the Court of Navarre it is written that they again fear a civil war. Within a few days the Cardinal of Guise sets out to go to Rome. It is written from Blois that Seve [see No. 148] has returned to favour with the king, restored to his office of Master of the Wardrobe ; that d'O instead of that is first gentleman of the Chamber, Villequier great superintendent of the Finances ; and that Chiverny has surrendered the seals to the Chancellor, in consideration that the elder Valette marries the Chancellor's daughter. Mouy tells me that there is a gentleman with d'Aubigny, who daily says mass in his house ; whose name, with a letter sent thence to affirm the same, and how he may be taken, he has sent by two Scots, very honest men, who departed hence when I went last to Blois. The Scottish ambassador has not 'stuck' to tell the Lord Hamilton in the hearing of others that the king is secretly Catholic. It is feared that Earl Morton was 'reserved to be executed' at such time as the commissioners should be in England. The Rochellers write hither that great preparations are made at Brouage of all sorts of munitions under colour of aiding the King of Portugal, which are greatly suspected by them. Others, knowing the strength of that place, suspect some attempt on England or Scotland ; which Marshal Cossé has instructions to prepare, as they suppose. It is greatly wished that the King of Portugal, if he be in France, (which Sapaio this day confirms to me) should retire betimes out of the realm. The Constable being 'referred' by the Queen Mother to deal with Villeroy refused utterly, affirming to her before his face that he was known to be at the devotion of the King of Spain. The Pope has sent back the Muscovite ambassador with great presents of Agnus Deis and relics, accompanied with Jesuits. He has granted the temporal governments again to the cardinals, from five years to three years, which before they had for life. The displeasure which he shows against the Venetians 'in' rebuking his ambassador might be so handled, if the Portuguese had some fit instrument, 'to do good upon.' And I can guess by Mr Sanders's letters to me that the Duke of Florence is jealous of Guise's proceeding to advance his House, which already spreads too large ; who perhaps might be so wrought that he could be content to afford the Portuguese comfort or annoy Spain, who 'understands with' the Guises. Also he stands in 'well' terms with France. I assure you there is very 'well' opinion here of these Portugal matters, the success of which lies greatly in the wisdom of those who follow the cause. I send you a book of the secret of the finances, discovering inward secrets of state.—Paris, 5 May 1581. Add. Endd. by L. Tomson : Assembly of Clergy at Gallion. 3 pp. [France V. 68.]
May 5. 163. PRIM to WALSINGHAM.
My last being in England has caused me to be out of favour with Count Vimioso, by John Rodrigues de Sousa's means ; for he has 'put the count in the head' that I and Dr Lopez 'depended' more to the English than to the Portugal, and therefore he wished the count not to deal with me in anything touching matters in England and the intended voyage to the Islands. They have 'garne' through here [sic] with six ships that go out of Rochelle and are to depart within 15 days. They went through with these six ships since Burnham departed 'here hence.' This 'sopraveyso' [qu. sopravviso or sopruso] I thought good to let you understand. John Rodrigues 'the' Sousa was the 'henthrer' [qu. hinderer] of our voyage intended by you, and to make his matter good, reported of me and Dr Lopez our friend for deceivers, in saying that we 'depended' to the English more than to them accounts us 'vryt' [?with] them traitors 'cknowen.' He has belied us, as your honour 'cknows,' and when time shall serve, I trust you will not 'let' to take it in hand for our discharge. John Rodrigues was the cause of our 'voyage' hindrance. At present I 'deseyare' [qu. desire] you to keep my counsel, and to say 'noding' to no man. Dr Lopez 'shall not cknow noding' as yet. John Rodrigues goes now 'for' England. I think I shall go after him. If I do not, I will write you of all that passes. I cannot now hear anything of truth to write ; I cannot see any money neither. I think the king is here, as they report.—Blois, 5 May 1581. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Portugal I. 54.]
May 5. 164. PRIM to WALSINGHAM.
This morning I wrote a letter for you, which I delivered to my lord ambassador to be sent to you. I since thought good to let you know that the count being very willing to speak with the ambassador and to confer with him on matters of Portugal, not only sent me to him by word, but likewise by writing. Having leave to come my lord was 'dreaded' [qu. driven] off from time to time. Ten days never could he have leave to come to speech with the count ; and all this caused by John Rodrigues 'the' Sousa. He found great friendship in England, and in reward of it broke up the voyage intended to the Islands, and not contented with that, caused the count not to speak with the Queen's ambassador, according to his promise, both by word of mouth by me, and also by writing to my lord. I leave the discourse of that for my lord's letters. I will not 'leave to show' you the discourse John Rodrigues had with a 'gentleman Portingall,' who being 'affectioned' to England made enquiry of John Rodrigues the cause why the count went not to the ambassador to confer with him. John Rodrigues answered him by this word, that the count had nothing to do with the ambassador, for he was to go to England and these matters were to be 'moved' by him to her Grace, and for the count to deal with my lord, it was not necessary. The pride of this man is such that he respects nothing the state of Portugal, but only his humour, But if I were 'ordye' [?] by my advice, he should not be had before the count had dealt with my lord here, and declared his matter to him, 'for why' this is not Portugal. That ambassador is dispatched by his king ; it is to be understood that whereas the count dealt personally with the king here, so should he 'a dealt' and broken his matter to him that 'presents' the Queen's person in this court. So I would not take it, for I would make John Rodrigues know the state of an ambassador, especially ambassador of so noble a court as that of England, is not to be flouted and so dealt with, as to make him believe that they would speak with him, and 'at length no such matter.' John Rodrigues is going to England, but he should not have audience before the count and the ambassador of England have dealt and talked together.—Blois, 5 May 1581. Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Ibid. I. 55.]