Elizabeth: May 1582, 11-20

Pages 20-38

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 16, May-December 1582. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1909.

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May 1582, 11–20

May 12. 22. The Merchants Adventurers to Walsingham.
Whereas of late we freighted a ship with commodities from this place for London, our appointers, according to the custom among us here, went about to see all orderly cleared; and enquiring very earnestly of the master what goods be had taken in of any not being of our fellowship, he confessed to have four small packets which he thought appertained to an 'unfree man.' Whereupon they somewhat opened one, and finding that they were books, drew one of them out and brought it to our deputy; who seeing it to be a vile and 'irronius' popish book, with the advice of the 'assistants' caused the packet to be brought to our house, opened it, and inventory of all 'thereinclosed' was taken.
And for that the intent of him that would have sent the books into England could not be other than vile and wicked, and most offensive to her Majesty's laws, we thought it our duty not only to let you understand the order by us taken, but also to send by this post—whom we gave great charge, and allowed him for his charges, to make all speed possible—one book of every sort, with a copy of the inventory, having likewise sent the like 'by long seas' per the master of the ship who had received them, with express charge incontinently after his arrival at London to deliver it to our governor, by him to be directed to you; and that the master suffer none of his men to go on land before he has delivered the governor's letter, and understood his pleasure, in order that the sender of such ungodly and forbidden books might be found, imprisoned, and dealt with according to his demerits. The disposing whereof we leave to you and to the Lords of the Council's judgement. His dwelling, as we understand, is in Botolph Lane, where he keeps a shop and sells pots and glasses. He is called John Hommerston. 'Ship letter' or direction, so far as we can learn, he gave none, but said to the purser he hoped to be in England before the ship, and would himself come fetch his packets. All the search and inquiry after him that 'possible could be' was made; but we heard he departed last Thursday towards Calais. If he can be met with here at any time hereafter, we will employ our uttermost endeavour to apprehend and ship him over. The residue of the books we keep here in safety till your pleasure is known, whether to send any more over, or commit them to the fire.—Antwerp, 12 May 1582. (Signed) Richard Bowdler, deputy.
The Inventory of books found in John Billing's ship.
Six books in 16, bound, intituled Officium Beatœ Mariœ Virginia nuper reformatum et Pii V. pont. max. jussu editum; gilt about.
Six others in a greater volume, bound, of like conteut, gilt about.
Five others in lesser volume, of like content, coloured with green.
Six books in small volume, bound, intituled Officium divinum ad usum Romœex decreta sacrosancti Concilii tridentini restitutum.
Three books in somewhat greater volume, bound, intituled Brevarium Romanum ex decreto sacrosancti Con. Trid. restitutum, Pit V. pont max. jussu editum.
Thirty two books of the smaller sort unbound, intituled Officium Beatœ Mariœ Virginia nuper reformatum, et Pii V. pont max.jussu reformatum [sic].
Eight books unbound in 40, with figures, intituled Officium B. M. V. etc.
Seven books unbound in 40, with figures, intituled Missale Romanum ex decreto sacrosancti Con. trid. restitutum etc.
Two books unbound in 40, intituled Enchridion [sic] sive manuale confessariorum et ponitentium etc, auctore Martino ab Azpilcueta doctore Navarre.
Six books unbound in 160 Officium divinum ad usum Rom. etc.
Six more unbound in somewhat greater volume intituled Horœ beatissimœ virginis Mariœ ad usum Romanum.
Two more intituled Precationum piarum Enchridion etc.
Three more intituled Breviarium Romanum ex decreto etc.
One more intituled Missale Romanum in folio.
Pio [sic] V, pontif. max. pontificiale Romanum.
Seventy books unbound, of the smallest volume, intit: Officium B. M. V. etc.
Six of the same sort and content, bound in black leather and coloured green.
Six of the same content, but somewhat greater, and gilt.
Six of the same volume and content.
Twelve more of the same volume and content.
Add. Endd. From Mr Gilpin. Popish books. 1½ and ¾ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 11.]
May 12. 23. Duplicate of the above.
Add. Endd.: The Dep. of the Merchants Adventurers at Antwerp. [Ibid. XVI. 11a.]
May 13. 24. Cobham to Walsingham.
I have sought to do you what service I could in the 'well putting away' of the diamond; having dealt with Escosse, merchant jeweller, according to your direction, to have his 'means' toward the king. By him I was answered that he knew his Majesty was certainly not in the humour to hearken after jewels; because his manner was to buy them only on occasion of marriages and such like causes. Then he took up jewels without giving ready money, but upon assignations and assurance. Wherefore I could not in any wise persuade l'Escosse to offer the diamond to the king. I thought it therefore not amiss to 'prove' what good hap I might have through M. Pinart's means, to whom I delivered the 'patron' of lead, together with the note of the weight, requesting him that his Majesty might see and understand of it. This he has performed, and finds the king esteems it but is not desirous to buy it. After this, understanding that M. de Gondi was one of 'the best-stored courtiers of money,' I 'motioned' him whether he would bestow 60,000 crowns on a rare diamond; but finding him at present to shrink at the matter, I proceeded no further. I then 'bethought with myself' of the lottery which M. Schomberg (of whom I wrote to you lately) has obtained of the king, for the 'utterance' of his unicorn's horn or other jewels. I moved a friend of mine to show the pattern of the diamond to Schomberg, and demand of him whether he could be content I might put into his lottery a diamond of the value of 60,000 crowns. The letter of my friend in answer I herewith enclose, knowing you may dispose of the party. Meantime I intend not to deal any more therein till I receive your further commands. Pray accept of my endeavours in the cause, according to the affection I have to be grateful, for the good I hope to receive by your mediation.
I send herewith Lord Hamilton's two letters, by which you will perceive his earnest entreaty to have his pension. He has sent me by the mouth of his servant new protestations of his faithful meaning towards her Majesty. He is for the present gone towards the baths at Lorraine very privately, intending to return about the middle of next month.—Paris, 13 May 1582.
Add. and Endt. gone. 2 pp. [France VII. 71.]
Enclosed in above:
April 27. 25. Lord John Hamilton to Cobham.
I have sent this bearer to you with some credit to deliver to you: whom please trust as myself. I am sorry to trouble you continuously with my 'adois,' but 1 promise you you shall in recompense have me ever ready to obey you. Because of his sufficiency I will not trouble you with a longer letter.—Moret, 27 April 1582.
P.S.—Pray let me understand [sic] such messages as I have sent to you sundry times, and that I may now have an answer to this, directed to my lord secretary, whereby I may perceive her Majesty's meaning towards me.
Add. Endd: Received the 7th of May, by Conyngham; and in England. Scottish. ¾ p. [Ibid. VII. 72.]
May 13. 26. Walsingham to Cobham.
Her Majesty understanding that du Vray, whom Monsieur had dispatched to the king his brother, to remove the impediments that stay the going forward of the marriage, was returned, and yet hearing nothing from Monsieur of the answer he had received on that behalf, began to take it in ill part that he should so long defer to acquaint her with the matter, and therefore by her letters charged him withal; letting him understand that this manner of dealing could not but proceed from some change of his good will and professed affection towards her, whereby the world would be drawn to conjecture that his coming over did not tend so much to seek her person as to crave her money.
Upon this Monsieur has dispatched M. de Bacqueville to her, to let her understand that in very deed the answer he had received by du Vray was not to his liking, which was the cause he had so long deferred to make her acquainted with it. He hoped that in time he might have been able to draw the king to relent in the matter. For his own part, as all his actions had always witnessed how much he desired the marriage, having left nothing undone which he thought might serve the obtaining of it, so he remained the same man still, as he would make known to her at all times and in all occasions that should be offered. He desired nothing more than that the marriage which he has so long and earnestly sought may be brought to pass; in furtherance of which Bacqueville requested to understand of her Majesty whether she could not be content you should in her name assure the king of the performance of the marriage in case the impediment that remains now undetermined were taken away; for so little effect had followed of the Commissioners' negotiations, and of the travails of divers other ministers heretofore employed in the matter, as also of the Duke's own coming over here in person, that he could not otherwise be persuaded the marriage would take place.
To this she made answer that she might not for her own sake take that course, in respect both of her quality and her sex, which would give occasion to those that are inclined to make the worst construction of things interpret that to be as it were a kind of wooing of Monsieur.
He then requested that she would yield so far in the matter as that if the king should send to you, you might 'resolve' him that the impediment being taken away, the marriage should go forward. Herein her pleasure is that you shall make answer, upon any such motion to be made to you by the king, as you have already done by directions from hence; that the impediment being taken away, her Majesty for her part does not at present know any other cause of delay in the matter of marriage.
Draft in hand of L. Tomson. Endd. with date. 2 pp. [France VII. 73.]
May 13. 27. Gilpin to L. Tomson.
Since the writing of my letter sent this morning by our post, one of the chief traders or 'doers' from this town into our country came to me with great affirmation and protestations that all their merchants had done their uttermost endeavour unto the magistrates to procure some speedy resolution for her Majesty's contentment; and for that Vander Werke, author of this new question about the repartition, is the chief opposer of what was heretofore intended, and grounds himself upon the agreement passed at the Hague, which as he says was only that the four provinces should by provision disburse half year's interest, and afterwards at the next meeting another order to be by them taken, the merchants would gladly see the copy of that agreement, promising that if they found it not conditional, they would use all means possible to obtain such answer from the magistrates as reason required, earnestly beseeching that 'the whilest' no extremity might be used against their persons or their goods, seeing there was no fault in them. To this effect I promised to write, adding also that if so were, they are not bound further than for half-a-year, and so might 'more cavil.' Assuredly in the bond for the principal the provinces were bound generally and particularly, so that her Majesty with good right might deal with any at her pleasure; which she would be forced to do to meet their dilatory exceptions, and cut off all trouble of further suits and delayed answers. Whereupon he required sight of the bonds, which I have not, and therefore trusting by insisting upon the traders to draw ere long some better and more 'resolute' answer, could wish I had copies of the bonds and agreements since the following of the cause passed from the States; which I had not since my last 'travail' into Germany, when I left them all with Mr Governor, and cannot call time to remembrance when they are bestowed. Therefore if the pains be not too great let them be sent to me or to Mr Longston, for they will, I trust, serve to good purpose.— Antwerp, 13 May 1582.
Add. Endd. by L. Tomson: This answered 20. Use it to benefit: beware deceit. Copies sent withal; and in another later hand: N.B.—The endorsement is Mr Thomson, Secy to Sir Fr. Walsingham. 1¼ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 12.]
May 13. 28. Herle to Walsingham.
I have presumed to write you sundry letters since my abode here, being very loath to become tedious to you, where my interest was and is to do you any service I can. I pray you therefore humbly to vouchsafe me three lines again, whereby I may understand whether my letters are come to your hands, and what you are inclined to do in so charitable an act as I have often commended to your good favour touching the cause that 'suspends' between Mr Wade and me. I am loath truly to trouble you, specially with importunity, whom I esteem to be my good patron and friend, as I never desired otherwise at your hands, whatever might have been conceived of me otherwise; which I commend to your own wise judgement, and to your trial of my actions, that shall be prompt to make proof of my duty and affection borne you. And this is all that I have to move your goodness in, seeing that I crave your good countenance here, which shall be so bestowed that your honour and service shall receive contentment thereby.
Here is a poor man, P. Bizarro, that writes a letter to you, and humbly desires, if your weighty affairs permit, that you will vouchsafe him an answer.
Yesterday the ordnance that has come from Tournay to Oudenarde was 'imbarked' and was to be placed today in the trenches, the Prince of Parma being there in person. They have but two places to batter by land, and 'it is' two gates, which have two strong bulwarks before them. If they mean to have a battery by water, where indeed the wall is low and weak, they may then within the town [sic] discharge so much water downwards that the river shall be made shallow, unable to bear their cannon; and if the meadow be 'discovered' therewith, yet can the ordnance not be planted on that side. Monsieur promises that his forces shall be there by the 25th of next month. The town is of good courage and provided with victuals and munitions for a long time.
Prosper Colonna is looked for as general for the King of Spain over all the forces that come from Italy. The Count of Arenberg has charge of other troops, and the Dukes of Brunswick and 'Lowenburgh' are expected for the king's service.
Monsieur's people, as the 'rutters' and Switzers, with some French shot to join with them, are expected to go by Metz and the country of Liége, to pass the 'Mose' at Stockhem, and to go by Weert.—Antwerp, 13 May 1582.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. XVI. 13.]
May 13. 29. Stokes to Walsingham.
My last to you was the 6th inst. Since then these speeches have past here.
This week those of Oudenarde passed muster of all their soldiers and burghers in the town. Of soldiers there are 536 and of burghers 2,000, of whom 1,200 have put themselves in arms to defend the town. The rest are old men, 'not able to do nothing.' Beside these, there are 600 peasants whom they have made pioneers in the town. So the governor, M. de 'Bourghe,' has written to the Four Members of Flanders at Ghent that he does not fear the enemy, and that they are well furnished with all things needful for three or four months.
Certain news is also come here of some of Monsieur's French forces of horse that have arrived on the frontiers beside Cambray and those parts, which has caused some fear in the enemy's camp before Oudenarde.
In the enemy's camp there is some discord among them; for which cause the Prince of Parma came thither in great haste, to quiet the matter. The speech goes there are many controversies among them about the government; but since the prince's coming they are something pacified.
The enemy has brought 11 cannons into their camp, but not yet planted, nor any preparation towards for any such matter; for the speech in their camp is of departing from thence towards the frontiers. But it is thought they will not so depart, though victuals and forage are very scant in their camp.
The Duke of Brabant's camp makes daily great skirmishes with the enemy, in such wise that they trouble the enemy's camp very much.
'Here goes' a speech that Monsieur has another enterprise in hand, but where is not known; so he grows daily in great good speeches among the commons for his careful dealing for the defence of the country.
By letters from Calais, the French king has commanded all the fugitives from this country that lie there, and at Boulogne and thereabouts, to declare why they lie there, or else to depart out of his countries; so most of them are gone to Saint-Omer and some to England.
This week divers ships have come into Zealand from Bordeaux and those parts, who bring news that Pierre [sic] de Strozzi who serves Don Antonio is come into Biscay with his ships, and has landed 2,000 men in the country, who burn and spoil all they come to. They also say that he has taken Alaredo in Biscay.—Bruges, 13 May 1582.
P.S.—I have received yours of the 5th inst. and humbly thank you for it.
Add Endd.pp. [Ibid. XVI. 14.]
May 13. 30. Thomas Doyley to Walsingham.
Since it has pleased our general Mr Norris to leave me in Antwerp, to deal in his affairs here in his absence, and with especial charge continually to advertise you of his sincere affection towards you, and also the news of these quarters, I am glad by this occasion to witness my duty to you. These therefore are to advertise you, that since MM. de Thiant, Temple, and la Garde surprised by a scalado the town of 'Aholst'—which so much imported that by certain report the Prince of Parma spat blood at the news of it—it was thought that the enemy would at once have dislodged from Oudenarde to beleaguer it before it was victualled. But hearing that the next day victuals and munition were sent in from Ghent and Antwerp, they have continued with their whole force before Oudenarde, without battery or any other attempt. Rochepot has lately given them two bravados, 'to give them alarms'; and whereas it was thought that the 15 cornets and regiment of infantry, which went from Oudenarde to Namur, were to intercept the passage of the reiters and the Swiss, the certainty is that they were only a convoy for the Prince of Parma's coming to Oudenarde. So we think he has 'set up his rest' to win it; but the town is reasonably well fortified, being drowned on two sides by their sluices, and it wants neither sufficient numbers of men, munition, nor victuals, for 400 lately came out of the town by swimming.
Verdugo gives out that he meant to attempt to deliver Schenk out of prison in Gelders, to amuse men's minds while he went about to surprise Venlo, but the enterprise failed.
Generally throughout Antwerp privy search has been made for one Mourfet [sic: qy. Moffett], an Englishman, who has long served the King of Spain, but he is not found.
The Princess was buried on Wednesday with great solemnity; and as the corpse entered the church, there was a very hot alarm, only by the falling of a window in the streets.
Not two days ago, I sent letters from Son Alteze and Son Excellence to the General, by which they request him to advance his marching towards Flanders, and withal letters to the Landraet now at Arnhem for the satisfaction of the soldiers with pay; who otherwise will not dislodge from their garrison at Doesborg. So we think his Highness will muster his camp with speed.
There are an infinite number of new regiments granted, so that captainships go a-begging; and our new English captains mutiny before they have any soldiers, with quarrels and hot words. God grant it be not a French device to use them as instruments of their meanings, to work some disgrace to our nation and General, being jealous of his credit in these countries.
Other news we have not, of importance or credit, but only of the coming of the reiters and Swissers for the service of his Highness.— Antwerp, 13 May 1582.
Add. Endd: from Mr. Tho. Doylye, and below: The letters of Audley Dannett, remaining with Jo. Norreys in Antwerp. 1½ pp. [Ibid. XVI. 15.]
May 13. 31. Fremyn to Walsingham.
I received yours of the 28th ult. on the 8th inst. Yesterday our companies arrived off this town, where they are now at anchor, awaiting his Highness's orders as to the place whither we are to march. The regiment came from Bergen-op-Zoom, into which have entered 5 companies, 3 of Flemings, two of Scots. I presume that we shall be marched into Flanders, to join the small camp that is near Ghent, and wait for Norris's and Count William's regiments, then to try if it is possible to relieve Oudenarde, which the enemy began to batter in the outworks last Friday, and will today or tomorrow be able to batter regularly (en batterie). The place is tenable provided those within have courage to defend themselves well. The mischief is that there are few soldiers and many burghers. Nevertheless the long delay which the enemy has made in front of the town before opening his battery will have given them good assurance, and afforded time for the most necessary provisions. Meanwhile the preparation of the army which is being raised in France gets along slowly, as does also the succouring of Don Antonio, which alarms the people of Rochelle, who have miraculously escaped the danger prepared for them last month, as you will have heard at large. In sum, the Roman Catholics have some great plan in hand to ruin and exterminate those who are opposed to their designs if God do not shortly restrain them, inasmuch as He sends the ill disposed cow short horns. Those of the Religion, besides, are much too simple; which has pretty well overwhelmed them in France, through letting themselves be led like sheep, and especially our nobles, who were the leaders in it, and have suffered for it; which should serve for an example to those who are left.
His Excellency is fairly well. His Highness goes to see him at the castle, where the Council is held sometimes, since his Excellency does not yet go out. Matters are not yet well settled here.
A letter has been sent me from Scotland, from the king and the Duke of Lennox, to put safely into the hands of Mr Menteith, a Scotch gentleman who is governor to M. de Laval's brothers; he is an important (? suffiant) personage. I sent it this morning; and he will send me the answer, and at the same time tell me what they have written to him.
The Princess was buried on Wednesday, in Our Lady's church, with the ceremonies and very honourably.—Antwerp, 13 May 1582.
P.S.—The Duke of Lennox is in undisturbed power in Scotland, and he and the Earl of Arran are very well reconciled. Stewart is still under arrest in his house. Next Tuesday is to be decided what to do with him.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XVI. 16.]
May 14 32. Stokes to Walsingham.
This morning the lords of this town have received letters from Ghent of 250 prisoners of the enemy's camp brought to Ghent. They were taken in a skirmish by those of Monsieur's camp, and many beside them slain.
Further, they write that the enemy by the order of the Prince of Parma sent a trumpeter to Oudenarde to summon them, and as soon as they heard what his message was, they shot at him and slew him, which shows that they within the town have good courage, and fear not the enemy; which long may it hold.—Bruges, 14 May 1582.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 17.]
May 14. 33. Cobham to Walsingham.
After I had received in your last her Majesty's command to inform the king of her desire touching her 'indisposed' subjects and seminary men who have passed over into these parts in disorderly manner without her license, I sought means to have access to the king; which I had on the 4th inst. at Fontainebleau. I delivered to him the chief points of what was prescribed in your letter; and had enlarged more amply to him, but that I found him not well able to stand on his feet. I was given to understand that he had that day taken a preparative and begun the entrance into his diet. So he requested me to deliver him a note of the case, which he would consider, with his mother and his Council. Howbeit, for that point he answered me he had not heard tell of the disorderly proceedings of her Majesty's subjects within his realm, nor of their placing themselves in companies in seminaries, nor of their coming over without her license. Now being advertised of it, he will give such satisfaction as shall be to her contentment. And whereas she had advertised him to have an eye to those which should come nigh him under pretence of religion, either Jesuits or others, he thought himself much bound for the care had of him, meaning to open his eyes to think so much the better to his safeguard. With that he 'licensed' me, entering his cabinet at once, so soon as my back was turned.
Then I went to the Queen Mother, to whom I signified briefly as much as I had said to the king, touching the aforesaid matter. She answered that she was sure the king would not suffer her Majesty to be discontented, for any act that might be done within this realm; but rather that he meant to give her more satisfaction than to any other prince in consideration of the continuance of her favour to Monsieur. She promised to remind the king to have this cause touching her Majesty's subjects and Jesuits considered; with which promise, and many other gracious words, she licensed me.
Incontinently afterwards, M. de la Motte-Fènelon and d'Escars accompanied me to the Queen of Navarre's chamber; to whom I signified how in respect her coming to Court had been uncertain because it was understood the king would have first gone to Blois before she had approached so near these parts, I had not certified the Queen of her present coming, so that 1 had not brought with me her letters or such message as otherwise I should have done. Howbeit since the Queen had commanded me in her former letters to carry myself in all serviceable manner towards her husband and herself, I thought it my duty to come and do reverence to her now that she was in this Court, and let her know the Queen's good disposition to her and her husband. I besought her also to perform all good offices for the maintenance of the ancient amity between the king and her Majesty. She answered she was glad the Queen had remembrance of her husband and her, 'pretending' she would do all good offices and conform herself to her brother's mind in embracing her Majesty's amity; the more in respect she hoped she would become nigher akin to them.
After I had left these princes, being still accompanied by la Motte-Fènelon, 'in his speeches he wished' the matter begun to be treated of in England when the commissioners were last there might be finished. I told him that so far as I understood the Queen was willing all matters should proceed to some good effect. Howbeit, there were many devices practised to trouble the amity; as lately it seemed the Pope and King Philip had contrived to send all the English Jesuits and practitioners to reside in colleges in France, to the intent they might be 'at nigher hand' to convey their seditious practices into the realm, and to give some cause of mislike to the Queen's good subjects. These English Jesuits served as spies here for the Pope and King Philip; who also thought thereby to ease their own charge, and drive them to live on the contributions of his Majesty's subjects. I besought him to continue his sincere intention for the maintenance of the 'amiable' proceeding which has been begun. He said he was sure the king was well 'affectionnated' her Majesty should be satisfied in all things, that no dealings might pass in his realm to her discontentment.
I have 'left one of mine' to solicit M. Pinart for the procuring of the answer to the negotiation I passed last with his Majesty.
M. la Roque, chamberlain to the King of Navarre, has been to me, of whom I certified in my late letter to you. He has given their Majesties to understand that the King of Navarre has commanded him first to repair into Flanders to Monsieur, and then to pass into England to her Majesty, wherewith their Majesties hold themselves content; so that M. Roque is 'licensed' from them and began his journey yesterday. I beseech you, since he means to repair neither to Mauvissière nor to Marchaumont, that he may be 'in some place intreated' by further order from yourself. He is a gentleman well accounted of by the King of Navarre. He was agent at my first coming here, for those of the Religion, and is well known to Sir Amyas Poulet, I send you herewith two Italian books, which were sent from Italy to Dr Allen, as by the letters sent herewith will appear, and two 'written books' of one Samuel Pettingall, who has delivered them to me together with a recantation and reconciliation made at Rome by him. He departs hence tomorrow, having promised me faithfully to repair to you; which if he does, I beseech you to have compassion on him, so that through your gentle dealing others may be encouraged to repeat and return.
The king has been written to by the Duke of Anjou beseeching him to 'like well' that he has thought good to request the Duke of Bouillon to repair to the Imperial Diet in Germany about his affairs. The king finds the choice very good, and likes the Duke of Bouillon to do what Monsieur requests. He is sending M. Cochere, brother-in-law to Secretary Brulart to the Diet, to be advertised of what passes.
I am told the Duke of Guise has promised to build a college of Jesuits beside his Seigniory of Eu in Normandy, by the seaside, and the Duke of Maine has undertaken to do as much at Maine.
I am advertised that most of the ships prepared for Don Antonio's intended voyage are gone down the river of Bordeaux towards Brouage. Letters are also come to Court 'how' Count Brissac has left the coast with ships and men.
The Abate del Bene is shortly to go from hence into Flanders, and in his company Captain Tommaso del Bene. The Abate has given the nuncio to understand that the Duke of Anjou means to send him to the Pope, to make declaration of his proceedings in Flanders. He has further signified to the nuncio that the Queen is not well pleased with Monsieur's manner of dealing and settling himself in the Low Countries.
The Prince of Condé's brother 'this other day' took the Order of deacon from the nuncio at St. Germain's Abbey.
The nuncio has dealt very earnestly with the king not to give the bishoprics, abbeys, and benefices to unfit persons, not being clergy. The king on this excused what is past 'to have' been done through the disorder within the realm, promising not to do the like hereafter, of which he desires him to assure the Pope.
It is written from Lyons that the Duke of Savoy and the Pope with other Catholic princes have certainly agreed to besiege Geneva.
I have desired Jackson to inform you of Mr Colson and Mr Foster's [sic] present return hither from Rome. I have also requested Mr Colson to repair to you to declare the particulars of his 'journey.'—Paris, 14 May 1582.
P.S.—The Duke of Lorraine, as I am just now informed, has put out of his state a great number of those of the Religion, a thing he has refrained hitherto.
They further tell me that the soldiers in the State of Milan are beginning to march towards the parts of Geneva, saying openly they are going to besiege it. On this it seems to be a matter contrived among the princes of Italy.
Add. Endd. 7 pp. [France VII. 74.]
May 14. 34. Cobham to Walsingham.
Whereas in your letter of 10 April last you wrote to me on behalf of Mr Marbury, whose unfortunate hap was such as to be spoiled at sea by French pirates, I have as you wished advertised the king of it, and he has now been pleased to grant Mr Marbury his favourable letters, directed to the governors where the pirates make their abode, for restitution to be made; which I hope may come to such good effect as will content him. It likewise pleased the king 'at that instant,' upon particulars which I presented concerning piracies done to the merchants of Chester, recommended to me also by you, to address letters to M. Matignon, M. de Meilleraye, and M. de Fontaines, governors of towns whence the pirates were, to see restitution made to the merchants of Chester. These letters I offered to deliver to Mr Marbury, who as yet has no express charge or means to prosecute it. So the letters remain with me till some other express order is addressed hither by them, when I shall not fail to further their suit by all the means I can devise.—Paris, 14 May 1582.
Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. VII. 75.]
May 14. 35. Cobham to Walsingham.
There is come to this Court an Almaine gentleman, to deal in certain affairs of the Duke of Bavaria. He has addressed himself to me, and delivered me these enclosed articles, which 'pretend' a profitable manner of 'foundring' and making artillery, and means to increase salt in the boiling with less charge of fuel than is yet ordinarily known. These two proffers seem at first sight plausible.
I beseech you to let me know what answer I shall return, and how I must proceed with this Almaine, the propounder of these devices; the rather because he offers, if it be thought good, that any one of these inventions will upon notice repair into England, so that reasonable consideration be had for the travail and charges. One of the masters of those devices dwells about Linz, the other at 'Reynzbourge' on the river of 'Danuby' in Austria. I await your further directions therein.—Paris, 14 May.
Add, Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 76.]
May 14. 36. Cobham to [?] Walsingham.
I cannot well tell how to give you sufficient thanks for your earnest joint dealing with my Lord Treasurer about my suit to her Majesty. I find I have need of all my best friends' favours and persuasions to induce her to 'yield' to give me relief, I am deeply sorry she has hearkened to the whispering and backbiting of those who have very unjustly delivered reports, as it seems, to the prejudicing of her better opinion towards me. Herein I have received as much money as you have answered truly in my behalf.
I am now again constrained, with an unwilling mind, to importune her Highness with this enclosed letter, beseeching her to make an end of that good work in bestowing that benefit she can resolve to grant me. Otherwise I must presently sell such other portion of my 'living' for 500l., which hereafter may be worth the double value to me, and great to my discommodity and discomfort besides.
I beseech you to advance my suit, and to help me out of these cases, which unfeignedly do grieve one, that I cannot have my mind so free in her Majesty's service as were convenient.
Doubting I have tired you and all my best friends with this answer of my continual importunity, being well wearied myself to be pressed with the necessity thereof, which makes me find the place and all other things 'extreme unpleasant' to me.—Paris, 14 May 1582.
P.S.—I have written as earnestly as there is, methinks, cause offered me 'on that her Majesty has been informed,' having abstained for [sic] troubling her. I beseech you to supply all things with your honourable dealing in my behalf.
Add. and Endt. gone. 2 pp. [Ibid. VII. 77.]
May 14. 37. Masino Del Bene to Walsingham
What I wrote you about Geneva and the Swiss is going quite otherwise than I said. So far from the Swiss having retaken the bailiwicks, the Duke of Savoy has garrisoned them, and also at the passage of Cluses, all which things give reason to think that he wants to attempt by force what he could not obtain by craft. It is much to be feared from these modes of acting that many others have an understanding with him; and for my part I have always held that the patience of the Bernese might do them a good deal of harm. Nevertheless, if the other cantons, those they call Catholic, are not in this conspiracy (intelligentia), their affairs can only pass well; but there is great reason to fear it, since they are directed by a Lucernese called Pfyffer, our colonel, who at the cost of his country's liberty, has a great wish to make himself head of a party. As for us, I know not how we shall understand it, but I know well that the matter touches us very nearly.
In the Court it appears that they have resolved to send M. de Bellièvre to his Highness; I do not yet know what he is to treat of, but I say to myself that it is as we say the song of the birds, or as they say here, that of the rebound (du ricochet, i.e. the old story). He will be here within two or three days. If I can learn anything more, I will let you know, as I will also do if on the arrival of the Queen Mother, who it is said will be here again at the end of the week, I can hear anything generally about all matters, If the Queen Mother keeps her promise to me, and sends me to his Highness, I shall like it very much, both for my reputation and also in order to make the journey at the king's expense. If not, I am determined to make it anyhow, being very ambitious of being buried among those who in opposing the greatness of the King of Spain are exposing their lives to the peril of death; which thing, if moderate account is made of me, I will do with a more resolute and constant mind than ever. If not, I will return to my poor house, to pray God for them. And as I said in my last, I hope to pass over to you yet once more before retiring to pay my respects to her Majesty, in the hope that my actions for ten years past have been and ever will be such as to blunt the edge of evil tongues, and above all, and principally, to see yourself.—Paris, 14 May 1582.
P.S.—Do me the favour to kiss the Queen's hand in my name, assuring her that no foreigner will ever be better affectioned to her than I.
Those of Solothurn and of Friburg, Catholics both, are joined with the Bernese in this and in everything else; but be it how it will, if that accursed fruit (?) of discord enters in among them, they will go amiss.
Add. Endd. Ital 2 pp. [France VII. 77 bis.]
May 18. 38. Mendoza to the Queen.
I wrote a letter to the Great Chamberlain begging that your Majesty would be pleased to grant me audience. In his absence, Secretary Walsingham had it, who said he would communicate it to you. He has sent me in reply, in your Majesty's name, a message by a third person, the substance of which was that I must endure it, because the Queen could not, consistently with her honour, give me audience. And since this point is of so great importance, and peace or war between the two Crowns may be the result of it, I beg your Majesty to be pleased to let me understand, for my quittance, if it is a case of admitting me and hearing, in order that I may communicate to you the matters which concern the service of the king my master; because if not, I shall take it for a clear indication that you wish to break with him, and shall instantly advise him of it therewith, and when you give me a passport, I shall at once leave England without waiting till the harquebuss-shots find me out.—London, 18 May 1582.
Add. Endd. Span. 2 pp. [Spain I. 95.]
May 18. 39. Commission from the Duke of Anjou to 'messire Johan, Baron de Nortz' [North] to raise 1,200 men in England, in 8 companies of 150 each, to wit, 13 officers, 3 gentlemen targeteers (rondaschiers), 47 pikemen, 12 musketeers, and 75 harquebusiers, the most seasoned troops that he can find. They are not to be assembled at any place in Brabant or Flanders without the express permission of the Estates or Members of those provinces, but when a small number have arrived they are to be marched straight to the duke's camp wherever it may be. Nothing is to be demanded towards the cost of their transport from England, but the duke promises to keep the companies in his service for at least 3 months from the date of their first muster. North is to admit none but Englishmen into his companies, nor any who have already served the States, except with a 'passport' from their last captains. This is without prejudice to the commission already given to Mr Norris as colonel-general of all the English in the duke's service, and North is to recognise him as such; etc.—Antwerp, 18 May 1582.
Copy, by P. Vamcœlput, notary. Endd. Fr. 3 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 18.]
May 18. 40. The Debt to the Queen.
The burgomasters and aldermen of Antwerp are grieved to hear from Mr George Gilpin that in spite of the equitable defence made on the part of the town, her Majesty intends to levy on them and their townsmen trafficking into England the interest of the sum of £28,757 and also security for the payment of the principal for which she is bound, on behalf of the States-General, to Pallavicino and Spinola. In all humility they say that according to the written promise given by them to Mr Gilpin they made every possible endeavour at the last meeting of the States-General to induce them to find the means of satisfying her Majesty. And whereas owing to the great necessity of the war the States were unable to come to a decision, they have bound themselves to do so at their next meeting, to be held about the end of July.
But as to what concerns the Estates of Brabant and this town, the magistrates notwithstanding the calamitous state of the country have busied themselves so diligently that they have ready their own share of a whole year's interest, according to the proportions fixed for the war and the defence of the country. The payment of this has been agreed to by the Council of this town as an extraordinary measure to show their good will and inclination to do something corresponding to the great desire they have to give her Majesty all the satisfaction possible on their part. And though they would not deny the endeavours made by her ministers, and by divers assemblies, and get payment of the interest and security for the principal, and willingly acknowledge the benefits rendered by her Majesty to all the Low Countries, the Duchy of Brabant, and this town, yet being assured that when the substance of the answers already written touching this matter has been reported to her, and when she has pondered the reasons with her wonted prudence and good nature (debonnaireté), she will be moved to find them good and sufficient, being based not only on the customs and privileges of the principal towns of the Low Countries, and particularly of Brabant, but also on written law, as well as reason and equity.
They humbly beg her Majesty to accept the aforesaid quota for Brabant, in hope that at their next meeting the States-General will find means to pay all the rest of the interest, and give security for this capital, if so be that she is not sufficiently secured. Meanwhile they cannot but declare humbly that Antwerp, not being authorised to answer for the Estates of Brabant and still less for the States-General, they are not qualified to accept in their name any declaration, insinuation, or protestation touching the affairs of those States; still less now that the Duke of Anjou has been received as Duke of Brabant; to whom the burgomasters and aldermen will make a faithful report of the Queen's will and intention, to the end that by his authority order may the sooner be taken for her entire satisfaction.
For the rest, they confide in her Majesty's kindness that the town may be excused in her eyes by the calamitous and necessitous condition of the provinces and the fact of Antwerp bearing in effect the sole charge of all the garrisons of Brabant, from a further burden of calamity and ruin and from being gradually deprived of the means not only of aiding the neighbouring towns in their extremity, but also of procuring satisfaction for her Majesty.— 18 May, 1582, 'in the presence of me, secretary of Antwerp.' (Signed) Ch. de Moy.
Copy. Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 19.]
May 18. 41. “An Extract out of the Register of the Court of Parlement of the Judgement, decreed against John Poisle, late Counsellor in the Laws, in the Massacre time a great persecutor of them of the Religion.”
The Court declares Mr John Poisle attainted and convicted of extortions and briberies and other matters mentioned in the criminal process; and for satisfaction thereof condemns him to make honourable amends on both his knees, his head bare and his hands joined, all the chambers of judges being assembled in the great Chamber of Parlement, and in presence of all to declare that rashly, injuriously and maliciously he has committed those extortions and briberies, and that he asks God mercy and the king pardon. And we banish him out of the Prevost [sic] and Viscounty of Paris during the space of five years and declare him unable to hold any estate under the king, condemning him in the sum of 500 crowns forfeited to the king to be bestowed on the reparation of the Palais, and 200 crowns more to the poor, and declare his office of counsellor 'confisked' to the king, and condemn him to pay the costs of the process.—18 May 1582.
Translation. Endd. in hand of Lisle Cave. ½ p. [France VII. 78.]
May 19. 42. Walsingham to Gilpin.
I perceive by the letter you wrote to the Governor that the States hold on their accustomed course of delays, so that small or no hope is to be looked for of any good from the friendly travail taken with them. Therefore as a matter now desperate, you will not need to use any great instance towards them, more than for fashion's sake to keep it in breath, and that they may in some part understand from time to time how unkindly their dealings are taken at her Majesty's hands. For further demonstration of this, you may in private, to some of the better sort among them, let fall these or suchlike speeches; that her Highness has a meaning, occasioned by these unthankful proceedings with her, to insist no more upon the demand of these 3,000 for the interest, but to seek her satisfaction for the 40,000 for which she has their particular bonds. Seeing the case stands so, it has fallen out well that you did not receive the part that was offered by the city of Antwerp, for by that means they would have thought themselves discharged and could not have been so well pressed to that which she means, which is, to have no further recourse than to them, 'as at whose only hands' she looks for satisfaction; since they can with more expedition and ease provide for their indemnity from the rest of the States than she can, as by effects appears. As in some of my former letters, so I again pray you to have a care to inform yourself when any rich ship comes from thence for these parts, and thereof give me speedy and secret notice, that order may so be taken for her Majesty's satisfaction.—Greenwich, 19 May 1582.
Draft in hand of L. Tomson. ¾ p. On back an address (crossed out) of a letter to the King of Denmark. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 20.]
May 20. 43. Stokes to Walsingham.
My last to you were the 13th and 14th. This week all things have been still in these parts. So that there are few speeches to write save these.
It is given out here that Bouchain, by some secret accord with those of Cambray, has yielded the town to them for Monsieur's use.
Also there is speech of some hope that Valenciennes will not be long out of Monsieur's hands; and withal they say that Mons in 'Henogo' has this week refused to take certain horse and foot into the town, which the Prince of Parma sent thither upon some misliking that he has of those there.
Sundry speeches go here of the enemy's camp, which all come from Ghent; whence some write that the enemy's camp has planted 17 cannon against Oudenarde and looks for 10 pieces more. Some write that none is yet planted, and that all their great pieces still lie in boats on the water; so that the magistrates of this town have as yet no certain advice of their dealings there. But ere long they will be known and seen, for by report victuals and forage are so scant in their camp that they must make their matters there short, or else must depart. But the wisest sort here think and fear they have some other matter in hand than to besiege Oudenarde, for their lying there is strange to all men, 'and to do nothing.'
This week one came from Oudenarde with letters to Ghent, wherein they write they are of good courage and fear not the enemy for these 3 or 4 months, and that they have made great fortifications in the town for their defence, so that it seems it is in very good care; God continue it.
The Duke of Brabant's camp still lies under Ghent, where the enemy two days ago gave them the ban jour, and they made skirmish long together, to the greater loss of the enemy's side, who were forced to retire as fast as they could, and were followed and driven home into their camp.
'The speech is left' in this town, by some Frenchmen that came this week from France, and are gone to Ghent to the camp, of four ensigns of foot by four sundry French captains, that they had gathered in Picardy by orders from Monsieur when he was in England; and when these four ensigns were full and ready to march, M. de Crèvecœur, Governor of Picardy, with the peasants of the country, fell upon them and slew them all.
These Frenchmen reported further that the army that is prepared in France with the navy of ships that is noised to be for the aid of Don Antonio, it is thought will go to Scotland; and that these men will be embarked about 'hable neff' [qy. Havre Neuf] or thereabouts, and M. de Brissac is their general.—Bruges, 20 May 1582.
Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 21.]
May 20. 44. Gilpin to Walsingham.
I have delayed these two or three posts to answer your letter, upon hope of some better satisfaction from this town to her Majesty than I had, or as yet can receive. Which having hitherto failed, rather than incur any 'construction' or doubt of my usefulness to obey, and endeavour all my duty in her service, I thought it best to advertise of my proceeding and 'success.' In my letters to Mr Tomson, dated the 6th, 7th, and two of the 13th inst. I wrote how I dealt, and what then passed and hoped [sic], to which I 'refer me.' Since then, on Friday morning last, taking with me Reynold Copcott as witness, I had audience in the 'college,' and there, after demand of payment for the whole year's interest, showed what I had sundry times propounded and required, and their answers both in writing and by word; yet nothing to have followed; so that it could not but move very great and just discontentment. If they now brought a new device, to question about the proportion that each province was to pay, it would little prevail to indifferent judgements for their excuse, but force her Majesty to leave the suit for the interest, and begin with the principal, which none of the provinces could exempt or free itself of, being bound generally and particularly. I therefore wished them to leave off those objections or disputes, and simply to deal for the best maintaining and keeping of their friends and credit.
Hereupon they deferred answer till the afternoon about four o'clock, when I appearing was by their pensionary Vander Werke, after the customary protestations, assured that they of this town had done, did, and would do what in them lay: and for so much as imported their quota or part, it was ready whenever I or any thereto 'committed' would receive it. And because they had used all endeavours this last meeting of the States-General, and could not finally procure the answer they hoped, but the determination was deferred to their next assembly in July, they trusted her Majesty would hold them excused, and considering the troubles their country is in, not interpret all to the worst, and deal by extremity, which answer, or to the like effect, they promised should be, and so I think will be, delivered or sent me in writing. If I receive it, you shall be sure to have it hereinclosed.
Touching the receipt of the money offered, I conferred with Mr Longston and Reynold Copcolt and resolved next week to receive it upon reckoning, how much or little soever it be; with reservation of her Majesty's rights and no prejudice to them any way. I trust and beseech you to accept of my travail, letting me or Mr Longston know 'per' the first your pleasure.—Antwerp, 20 May 1582.
Add. Endd.pp. [Ibid. XVI. 22.]