Elizabeth: August 1582, 26-31

Pages 275-292

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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August 1582, 26–31

Aug. 26 283. Thomas Doyley to Walsingham
Although at 'Leyre' in jest it be written in great letters upon the gate next this town Antwerp t'hueren teghen Barmis, notwithstanding, in earnest there are infinite bills for houses to be let and sold since the loss of 'Leyre'; many retiring for fear, and others compelled by 'billets' from the Estates as suspected persons. The burghers in high terms complain of 'Son Al.' for stuffing the frontier towns with French 'garnizon,' which makes them jealous of his proceedings, and notwithstanding all his urgent letters to the contrary they have sent to put down St. Bernard's Cloister by Antwerp.
One camp dislodging from Dunkirk lies between Oudenarde and Ghent, where the Duke was triumphantly received and created Earl of Flanders. The camp, after the receipt of their pay, which they are now fingering, marches into Brabant, to lie between Mechlin and Brussels towards Rimmenam, and the enemy is afoot to follow. Some say they are to do some piece of service against some town, because on Thursday last 9 pieces of artillery for the battery were mounted and embarked from Antwerp, and other from Ghent.
Provision is laid in for the Duke's coming to this town.
The report is that the Duke of Savoy is dead and has made the King of Spain his heir, not respecting the Duke of Nemours his great-uncle, nor his bastard brother, a lusty gentleman who, at my being at Geneva, was in terms to 'fiance' the heir of the Duchesse d'Entremont by the Admiral Chastillon; for which cause the French king is gone in post by coach to Lyons.
Bellièvre is gone 'for' France with Salcedo.
Mr Knollys continues his good offices towards the General, and his coming has wrought sundry good effects.—Antwerp, 26 August 1582.
Add. Endd. 1 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 126.]
Aug. 26 284. Stokes to Walsingham
My last was the 19th inst., since which the magistrates have received the following.
At Calais the French king has this week 'defended,' that no victuals nor munitions shall be sent from thence into the enemies' government of Artois and 'Henogo.' They also write from Calais that all the fugitives of these parts that lay there are suddenly departed thence for fear of being arrested.
There is some great fear here among those of the Religion that they will not be suffered to use their conscience here long, so that many of them are in doubt of their 'safe being' here.
The French seek to place in every town and castle all French soldiers, greatly to the misliking of all the commons of the country. But Ypres will take in none.
The speech is in this town that the Prince of Orange at Ghent has used very hard speeches of the English colonels and captains about their pay, and for other matters, for which cause they cannot have that credit to lie in garrison in any of their towns; at which the commons are something aggrieved, for they had rather have them than the French, who now must have all the credit of the country.
Monsieur's camp lies before the castle of 'Gavor,' which is a place that the enemy keeps, lying between Oudenarde and Ghent; whither they have sent from Ghent the cannon to beat it. The speech continues still that the camp will march towards Brabant, and that those of Ghent have prepared many double cannons to be sent from thence with the camp; of which many marvel that they will suffer so much of their best artillery to depart from them.
The enemy's camp lies 'scattering' at Poperinghe, 'Bell,' and all the villages thereabouts, and the speech is amongst them that they will besiege Cambray, to which place they are preparing to march with all their camp, and by good advices from those parts, at Valenciennes, Arras and other towns they are making the cannon ready, with spades, pickaxes, and other necessaries for pioneers to use.
Last week there was small hope here of any more aid to be had from France; and now this week great speeches are given out of 15,000 men, horse and foot, come into Boulonnais, and some beside Cambray. But most men think they are but speeches given out 'of purpose.'
The soldiers of the town and castle of Tournay, who are all Allmans, fell in a mutiny for want of their pay, and had the sacking of the town for three hours.
Last Monday, the 20th inst. Monsieur made his entry into Ghent, where the Gantois received him very honourably with great joy and gladness, with sundry 'treme' shows and pageants made in the streets; and upon Thursday the 23rd he was sworn Earl of Flanders, 'at the which doing,' in token of joy and gladness thereof, there was good store of gold and silver cast among the people in the streets; and upon Friday last the Earl of Flanders made himself new magistrates of Ghent for this year, according to their old accustomed orders. I send their names hereinclosed. The commons of the town took it very joyfully that it pleased him to be at the choosing of their magistrates; so that all things were done to the great good liking of the 'Gantners.' God continue it.
Also it is said that at the end of this week the Earl of Flanders departs from Ghent to Antwerp.—Bruges, 26 August 1582.
P.S.—Enclosed I send packet which Capt. Williams sent me from Ghent.
The Magistrates (Wet) of Ghent, renewed the 24th August 1582.
Echevins of the upper bench (kuere). Echevins of the lower bench (ghedeele).
Jo. Jacques van der Haeghe, lord of Gotthem. Jo. Joos Triest, lord of Bovendeghem.
Pe. Mattheus d'Honde.
Lienen Manners. Ghedraedt Heland.
Michiel van Hante. Joncheer Ghedraedt Maertens.
Jo. Joos de Gruntere, Fus Me Jans. Thomaes de Vos.
Anthonius van Hussle. Jan d'Hooghe.
Willem de Lumijdt. Jonckheer Joos Triest Fus Gilles.
Jo. Joos de Zijpen. Gilles Gebbrecht.
Me Lienen Goedhaes. Gilles Thomas Berghen.
Jan van Loo. Daneel de Crooch.
Willem de Smet. Gilles de Wulf.
Me Lantvereys (?) de Muelinaere. Lienen van de Straete.
Willem Thys. David van de Piedt.
Jan Bochaert.
Add. Endd.pp [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 127.]
Aug. 26 285. P. De Zubiaur to Walsingham
I wrote to you by William Bodenham begging you to do me the favour of sending me my passport, and that it might be dated the 26th, because it expired on the 25th. No one gives me any trouble except Sir 'Ullenhuinter' [William Winter] for £338 [?], as to which I promised him for Juan Bautista de Sanvitores that if he did not pay him them, I would. I showed him your letter and that of the Treasurer, and he did not give way at all, nor want to see them. I am glad, because between him and others they divided the plunder of the Panama voyage; and if it cannot be recovered [?] I shall be glad if my lords [mis señores: qy. the merchants] got it out of his hands and enjoyed it, and I am here under your protection.
The king owes me 50,000 ducats, and the Secretary Don Juan de Idiaques writes me that he will see they are paid me. To no other person in this city do I owe a real by obligation or written document; wherefore I treat plainly and truly. There are letters from Spain, but not from the King. They will not be long.— London, 26 August 1582.
Add. Endd. Span. 1 p. [Spain I. 102.]
Aug. 26 286. “A Letter Deciphered” [to Father Holt]
I received yours of the 8th June; for answer 'whereof' you shall understand first that I wrote to you once before since my being in this place, wherein I showed you the causes of lets here touching the dispatch of my particular business; as, first, the sickness of the King of Spain, and after that his war by sea, whereof I know you have heard, and of the victory which he gained, of which I send you the particulars. Now they promise me present dispatch, whereof I hope you will receive intelligence from me soon after the receipt of this. I have laboured so vehemently in my particular business you know of that I am almost worn out both body and mind. Infinite overthwarts of late have I had, and many times have I almost 'despaired the success.' And now again I am in hope, and that very shortly, to have good success.
I am sorry if Father Creighton promised more in the matter of money than he has performed or could perform, for the matter depended on other men's will to perform it or not, and that point I hope he protested. Otherwise surely he would have been much 'overseen' in making promise absolutely of himself. I have laboured most earnestly for the performance of that point by the King of Spain. I am put in hope that I shall finally obtain it, to your friends' contention, however the other matter be concluded or no. And so I pray you to signify to them from me.
There was an advice came hither by one, that your friends were thinking of abducting the king out of Scotland. It much misliked all men here, especially the king of Spain, who is 'flat of opinion' that if that fall out which way soever it be, or to what side soever it fall, singular inconvenience will ensue, to their great displeasure and hurt, and therefore in no way to be thought upon.
Touching your 'particular,' I will write more at large to you hereafter, and that shortly I hope, as soon as ever I see the end of my matter that I now stay upon. Commend me most humbly and heartily to your friend there. I do not write this time to good Mr 'Murveill' . . . . . and extreme multitude of business which I have, how exceedingly we are beholden to him: which I 'let' not to make our friends here understand. Commend me a thousand times to him and all his.— 26 Aug. 'You know from whence and from whom.'
I have thought good to send you herewith a copy of the late victory of the Spaniards in the 'ocean sea.' All these countries of Hainault are now full of them. Endd.: Copy of the letter deciphered, and found with William Holt. This was sent from William Gibbe [? name somewhat blotted] in Spain to William Brereton alias Watts, as Wm. Holt affirms.
Some sentences in Latin. 1 p. [Spain I. 103.]
(Note.—Holt, when arrested in Scotland in the spring of 1583, was passing under the name of Peter Brereton.)
Aug. 27 287. Cobham to Walsingham
I have written to you lately, so that there is almost no further occasion offered to trouble you with any lines, 'other than' I am desirous to let no convenient messenger pass, 'by whom I would not' certify you of the affairs in these parts. The Queen Regent keeps her Court at 'St. Moro, 'resorting daily hither to Paris. She makes it known to all the Duke of Brabant's wellwillers that she does and will help her son in Flanders so far forth as she may not 'show' to have a will to 'break wars' with the Catholic king. It seems, as I hear, she could be contented Marshal Biron should resort into Flanders for the service of Monsieur, howbeit as yet I have learned no certain resolution thereof; but the Prince Dauphin has been at the court, much 'cheered' and encouraged by the queen. He 'pretends' to take his 'voyage' about the beginnig of next month, and his companies are already passed forward.
The Duke of Montpensier is still here in Paris, declaring himself earnestly affected to Monsieur's cause, having opened his purse very largely to the Prince Dauphin, his son, as I am informed.
The return of MM. Bellièvre and Brulart is daily expected, for the desire they have to understand clearly what Salcedo has 'passed' and confessed.
The queens were yesterday at the christening of the Duke of Guise's son.
The Queen of Navarre has taken possession of Cardinal Birague's house, on the 26th inst., and paid some part of the money.
The King entered Lyons on the 17th, accompanied by scarcely 20 horses, and not staying there, went to meet his young queen at the Bath of 'Bourbonnensi, 'as they certify hither. He has given order to have 200,000 crowns made over to Lyons, and wrote a letter to the Queen of Navarre concerning his coming thither, desiring her to inform everyone who had heard tell by report that his repair to Lyons was with intention to displace M. Mandelot from his government, that he had no such meaning.
The king two days before his departure hence sat in Council and discoursed in a long oration to his councillors the inconvenience and disorder he found to be in his State; showing the great zeal he had that it might be redressed by way of justice and reformation. Which speech he delivered with such apt terms that his councillors have given him great commendation. I hear further he has sent letters to the Courts of Parlement and other Courts of his High Justice, and governors of his realm, showing the grief and discontent he has of the great taxations and impositions wherewith his people are at present burdened.
The king has taken with him two or three boys, who write for him daily in his cabinet, after his direction, such causes as he every day passes, and the 'memorials' which he takes from them; locking those writings up in a desk, and keeping the key about his arm.
They have signified to me that the 'Swisses' wrote lately to the Duke of Savoy, requesting him to withdraw his forces altogether from the confines of Geneva; otherwise they would be constrained to remove them perforce. They desired him further to give order for the defraying of those charges they had already made through the levying and approaching of his forces.
I received your letter by Walter Cassie touching the complaints against d'Armeville, and have requested to have audience of the Queen Mother; through he has lately been with me, promising that all things should be redressed.
The Spanish ambassador is very inquisitive to hear what news comes from England touching the Spanish and French 'armies,' because what passed in that fight by sea is not yet declared with any certainty.
There is an Irish footman of my Lord of Leicester gone towards England, who returned in Count Brissac's ship, from whom you may understand such particulars as he saw during the Count's stay in the fight beside St. Michael's.
I send herewith the copy of a letter directed to the Duke of Guise; which letter I had in my hands, and would have sent, but I could not be suffered.
I have had no dispatch from you since that which Mr Burnham brought, which was dated July 22 and 23. I beg, if you please, that my Italian may be in some sort dispatched, and commanded not to pass by the ordinary post way of Boulogne or Calais, because there is 'wait laid' for all letters which shall pass to and fro. I dispatched Paynter the 'post' on the 21st inst. by way of Dieppe requesting him to make haste.— Paris, 27 August 1582.
P.S.—'Perrador' the consul, and Custodio Leytam are both come hither out of Flanders, 'assuring' there are ships ready for the service of Don Antonio. And M. Beauvois-'Langi,' who was sometime captain of the King's guards, is come to this Court. It is thought the Queen Mother will persuade him to go with the new supply of ships and men to aid Don Antonio.
Add. and Endt. gone. 4 pp. [France VIII. 28.]
Aug. 28 288. Cobham to Walsingham
I have this day had access to the Queen Mother, taking occasion to visit her, because I had not done my duty towards her since her coming hither from Fontainebleau. I assured her I had done it sooner, but that I heard she was in some grief through the uncertain reports of M. Strozzi's death, which I said I hoped would prove otherwise, to their better contentation. Whereon she told me that as yet she had received no certain news, but advertisements of hope, as well from Flanders as from her own coasts. And further, how this morning the Bishop of Angiers, who is newly come to Court, told her he had received a letter from one of the ports on the sea-side nighest to Spain, wherein it was written how a small bark was come from the Isles of Madeira, the master and merchant of which 'assured' that they had seen the fight between the French and Spanish navy besides the isle of St. Michael, and perceived the French to have the Spanish fleet in chase, and that they saw the French masters of the two Spanish gallions, with white 'auncients' set in them. She added, however it was, she would not lose her courage, but meant to proceed, knowing her right to be good. Howbeit, she said, they would do the better if it pleased her Majesty to help them as she had promised, now that it was no further to be doubted, since they had fought with the Spaniards.
I answered her that she might be well assured the Queen would 'accomplish' with them thoroughly in all points of friendship according to the amity which she had with them; and so I took occasion to leave that 'purpose' and turned my speech to Monsieur's actions in Flanders, declaring to her that it was reported he wanted their Majesties' favour and forces, and especially their French lances. To which she answered they did what they could, and the Prince Dauphin was repairing thither with many of the nobility. Howbeit, she declared she had signified to her son her advice to be that he should not overhastily fight with the enemy, but rather weary them, taking advantage of places and opportunities; because she understood the Prince of Parma was strong, and the Spaniards full of deceit.
After thus much had passed, I besought her to command that some order might be taken with d'Armeville, who had a bark or two on the sea, which had robbed her majesty's subjects, 'whereof one of them' was come to me with letters, in which I was commanded to beseech her he might be restored to his goods, and recompensed for his losses. I requested her withal that M. Pinart might be present, because he was already acquainted with the cause and the complaints thereof I had made at Fontainebleau to the king.
whereon she commanded M. Pinart to come to her, who declared the king's pleasure was that restitution should be made, and justice done according to the offence; for which purpose he had spoken to d'Armeville, who had promised that the barks which 'named themselves' to belong to him should be compelled by him to retire, and that he would give satisfaction for so much as had been taken from her Majesty's subjects, and come to his or any other hands. Notwithstanding, I requested her now again that d'Armeville might be sent for, to answer 'unto' the disorders committed against her Majesty's subjects by his barks and men. This the Queen Mother has commanded to be done, and M. Pinart has promised that full satisfaction shall be given to Walter Cassie; which I will pursue according to the recommendations received in your last letter brought me by Cassie this other day.
The King at his late being in Lyons would not suffer himself to be received in any solemn manner, sending back the gentlemen and soldiers who came towards him to accompany him into the town. But after he had lodged the first night in M. Mandelot's the governor's house, and the next morning the chief officers and the burgesses came to visit him, offering their services, he gave them to understand that his coming thither was in private sort, to 'cheer' with them, and to spend his time merely a few days, while his queen was gone the next day to the Baths of 'Bourbonnensi.' Which they understanding prepared accordingly places of dancing; so that his Majesty was feasted the first night by the Genoese, and the next, more sumptuously, by the Florentines, and lastly by those of the town, where he liked the grace and manner of dancing of the gentlewoman most especially, and gave her some small present, granting pardon to her brother, he having committed a 'fact' worthy death. The next day he left Lyons, taking his way to 'Bourbonnensi,' 'where there' and at Moulins or thereabouts he will spend the most part of the month of September. In this Court they judge he will not so soon return into these parts because he has sent for his violons and other musicians.
There are letters come from Geneva, certifying how those of that town and the Duke of Savoy have referred their causes to be decided by the Swiss Cantons, who are to meet in France this next month. Meantime the king has commanded all the French who served the Duke of Savoy to retire. And M. de Châtillon, with both horse and foot, was advanced very near Geneva to pass to their aid; but they of the town were unresolved whether they should permit him to approach near their town, or dismiss him with his companies, because they did not yet see clearly what the Duke of Savoy intended, though he had retired and diminished some part of his forces.
The Duke of Savoy seems, by his ambassador lately sent to the King of Navarre, to renew again the wooing of the Princes of Navarre; wherein he employs the means and friendship of Marshal Montmorency, who is in great good favour with the King of Navarre.
The King of Navarre, the Prince of Condé, the Duke of Montmorency have appointed a meeting together, and the King of Navarre has required Marshal Joyeuse and the Bishop of Toulouse to come likewise and be present with them to redress some difficulties which impeach the public peace in those parts.
MM. Bellièvre and Brulart came to the Court this evening bringing with them Salcedo, who will be committed to prison at Bois de 'Vincent.' The Queen Mother intends to speak with him, as I am informed.
The Duke of Guise's son, of whom I wrote, had the Queen of Navarre for his godmother and the Duke of Montpensier for his godfather, after whose name he was christened Loys. And because the old Duke could not be present, the Prince Dauphin supplied his father's place at the ceremony.
It is understood in this Court that Monsieur's 4,000 Swiss are come to the frontier of Lorraine together with the companies of Dauphinois and the Provençals. The rest of the French horse and foot are appointed to join the Swiss about the beginning of September, so that the whole number of the army which will be conducted by the Prince Dauphin, M. la Val and Rochefoucaut will amount to 14,000 or 15,000 as they account in this Court.
My Lord of Leicester's footman is persuaded by the Consul 'Perrador' and Custodio Leytam to stay going into England, so now he is resolved to return to Rochelle, to pass in the company of Don Duarto de Meneses, thinking to repair with the first occasion to Don Antonio.—Paris, 28 August 1582.
Add. Endd.pp. [France VIII. 29.]
Aug. 28 289. P. De Zubiaur to Walsingham
I am so greatly obliged to you that I know not how I can serve you: since neither Mr Winter nor other will venture to go against your orders, under whose protection I remain in this realm.
I have tried all I could to get done with (hechar tierra a) a foul crime, which is that being at Falmouth, within the Queen's port, the people of the place at the inducement of certain persons, took Phelipe de Orio's ship from him; and having thrown his people into the sea, a very foul affair, agreed to give the poor master his ship back again in Biscay, and they struck a bargain on that. The master departed on June 7. and up to now they have detained her in Falmouth, offering him some trifle; and so he has returned here, and is in the ambassador's house, where they give him something to eat. I do not know what he has thought of them. I beg you to have the poor man's business dispatched. He does not want to go to Ireland, because he hears that his ship is ruined and rotted; and so let your orders be that they give it him at once since they have been guilty of the death of his people and the loss of his ship. One of the delinquents is a prisoner in the Marshalsea, who it would be well should be examined by some person having commandment from you.
—London, 28th August 1582.
Somewhat damaged by water. Add. Endd. Span. 1 p. [Spain I. 104.]
Aug.29 290. Danzay to Walsingham
I wish to thank you for having been enabled by your means to make the acquaintance of Lord Willoughby, who for his singular virtues deserves to be loved, honoured, and served by everyone, as I shall sincerely do, and shall strive by all good offices to preserve and increase this friendship. We have often been in familiar communication, for it has happened that certain wits were striving to traverse and hinder his designs. But they have been so overcome and vanquished by this prudence that his negotiation has reached the end we desired.
I will not importune you with the particulars of these parts, since Mr Waad, a gentlemen of good judgement, will declare them faithfully and fully to you.—Copenhagen, 29 August 1582.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Denmark I. 23.]
Aug. 29 291. Mauvissière to Walsingham
The bearer of this, named Sallefranque of Bordeaux, who with reason praises you as having found you honourable and full of justice and good affection towards himself and all Frenchmen, whereof he loudly proclaims the kindness and favour shown him, to balance this however complains of the greatest injustice in the world done to him by Mr 'Houton' who is a clerk in the Customs for wine; who is detaining his property and his credit to his entire ruin. Hereof he makes such great lamentations that the air, and everybody, are filled with his grievances. He says further that Mr 'Hoton' has so much favour and authority in this town that he, Sallefranque, cannot find a lawyer to plead his cause; the said 'Hoton' doing him the greatest possible injury, having received the goods for which Sallefranque is responsible, and for which he must pay to the last sou, or in default of that, die in prison. This will affect all the honest English merchants from the failure of credit which they will henceforth find at Bordeaux, when the example of Sallefranque is seen. He is now going back to you to implore his final remedy; and I shall be compelled, if he gets no other satisfaction, to grant him an attestation that he has not found justice nor favour in this realm save with you, which will do no good for the violent complaints that Sallefranque will make on all sides; and he will go and importune the king and all his Council, who I know will refer him back hither before providing any other remedy for him. This being well considered, I beg you to see what can be done for this poor man. who is to be pitied, and who, with the French people, will be bound to serve and honour you as I do for my part.—London, 29 August 1582.
p.S.—I send you a little packet for the Queen of Scotland and her officials. which I beg you to let her have. I send the letter which M.Nau wrote me in the last packet which you sent me, to thank you for the kind prompt dispatch which you gave to M. du Ruisseau, her agent, to go to the Queen of Scotland.
Add. Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [France VIII. 30.]
Aug. 30 292. Mauvissière to the Lords of the Council
I write to tell you that many poor French merchants have gone and are going every day to the king my master and the Governor of Normandy to beg them to intercede with the Queen and the Lords of her Council to have justice for the great and notable piracies and depredations constantly committed by a number of Englishmen, whose retreat is in the neighbourhood of Poole. The following are the names of such as can be found out: Captain Pons, Captain Clinton, Captain Thomas Posset, Captain Hains, Captain Hoit, and another Englishman, captain of a flyboat of 100 tons, whose name is not known, with five or six other English captains, having ships with warlike armament, as is attested by sundry prominent burghers of Poole. These pirates have in the last month taken nine French ships laden with goods of which I send you a note, together with their names, besides several other which we do not know; and have armed the best of them, and made the traders pay ransoms, and the vessels they do not fancy, they make the owners but back at what price they fix, selling and distributing the goods to various persons thereabout, who deal with them freely; and they say they will make themselves so strong that they will take care no one hangs them, and that since the land is no good to them, they must needs make their profit on the sea, and many other remarks they have made to the Frenchmen whom they have let go after payment of ransom, going so far as to say they are not afraid of the Queen's ships.
Now, my lords, I leave this to your good consideration, and beg you in the name of the king my master to have justice done to these poor subjects so recently plundered, and not to let these pirates increase and multiply till they do more harm and are more difficult to break up. And whereas among the ships plundered there is one named the Cantarainc of Honfleur, of 150 tons, which resisted, and 12 of the best men were killed by the pirates, and seven mortally wounded, they took this ship and armed her, and with her took several other ships and traders, whose names I do not know, and among others s German hulk of 400 tons, which after pillaging and taking a great quantity of money in her they sold back to the owner for £150 sterling, now they are looking out for all the French traders and sailors returning from the fishery. There is an old Frenchman, an honourable trader, named Chefdostel, who in order to redeem a small ship of 60 tons, for £100, has for three weeks paid the vice-admiral Francis Harley as interest on that sum, £30, as I can show by the receipt of the vice-admiral, who goes day and night to see these pirates and treat with them. The poor inhabitants dare not speak about this.
And as regards the Cantareine the king has written to me particularly, very earnestly, as have M. de Meilleraye and his brother, and M. de carrouges, begging her Majesty and you to have her restored to the owner, Jean Caserme, who is on his way to you to implore justice. And as regards the other ships and goods taken by the pirates from Frenchmen, I beg you in the king's name to use your prudence and equity; which doing, and taking these pirates, her Majesty and you will do a work worthy of her goodness and virtue.—London, 30 August 1582.
Add. Endd. Fr.pp. [Ibid. VIII. 31.]
Aug. 30 293. The King of Denmark to the Queen
Your letter written on April 14, concerning a ship called the Ascension, said to have been intercepted by the crews of the King of Sweden's fleet, was brought hither by this bearer, your servant, only yesterday, August 29.
That the ship stayed some days in our roads of Öresund was not due to any fault of ours or of our officers, as we have shown fully and precisely in our former letters. Therefore if any harm arose from the delay, it must be held to have been received from the cause there alleged, not from us or any our servants.
Also, though we should have no objection to write to the King of Sweden, as you suggested, we are hindered by the following reasons which lead us to think our letters would not have great weight. Our letters of passage, as they call them, which we gave to those sailing for Narva, were unable to deliver any others but our own subjects under our treaties from the persecution of the King of Sweden and his crews; the receipt of such letters by foreigners was originally to meet the case of their falling in with ships of our own. Then again, from the report of your servant here, we find that before coming here with your letter he had been in Sweden and had negotiated in the matter there, with the result that the ship was restored, but not the goods.
From all this you will doubtless judge, as we said before, that our letter would be of no weight in this position of affairs; and we accordingly promise ourselves that you will readily hold us for omitting to send them. Otherwise we should have failed to meet your request, which avails much with us, nor to render our services if any interposition was called for. We thought only that a present reply was due to your letter, and we pray you to take it in good part.—Frederiksborg, 30 August 1582.
Add. Endd.: To her Majesty from the King of Denmark, about the ship stayed in the Sound. Latinpp. [Denmark I. 24.]
Aug. 30 294. Stokes to Walsingham
Having intelligence in what disorder Monsieur's camp lay 'scattering' in sundry villages between Ghent and Grave, 'made' the Prince of Parma come yesterday morning with his whole camp of horse and foot to set upon them. But by great fortune, about two hours before the enemy came, a poor peasant gave warning of their coming, and incontinently they gathered together as fast as they could. And being together, the enemy came and 'gave the charge' upon them first with the new-come Spaniards and the 3 ensigns of the resolved Englishmen; which was done with such a fury that the Frenchmen all ran away towards Ghent as fast as they could go, and left all the Englishmen and Scots to try the matter with the enemy; 'who' by the little and little were forced to retire under the walls of Ghent, where they set themselves in good order of battle, and then made a noble stout skirmish with the enemy. In this skirmish General Norris very valiantly with the English lances twice gave the charge upon the enemy, and made them retreat; and the cannon played continually from the town walls, which troubled the enemy very sore. This skirmish continued from before 8 o'clock in the morning till 11 at noon, and then the enemy retired a little way and rested themselves until 1 o'clock in the afternoon, and then they came again, and made a new skirmish upon General Norris, which continued until 4 o'clock. But they were so valiantly received and 'defended' by the Englishmen that the loss fell greater on the enemy side. And Monsieur and the Prince of Orange were upon the walls and saw all the pastime from the beginning in the morning until the ending in the afternoon; at which Monsieur was greatly aggrieved to see his Frenchmen run away forenoon and afternoon, and in the hearing of a great number his Highness said he would put his honour in the hands of Englishmen for their valiant service.
The Scots were 5 ensigns at this skirmish, but they were scant 300 in all. The enemy is now retired to Oudenarde. They marched 14 leagues that night to do this enterprise, and carried away the greater loss; for by report there are not slain on this side above 100 men, but many are hurt. Of English captains there are hurt and slain the following: Captain Sutton, sore hurt and not like to live; Captain Cromwell hurt in the leg, and Captain Edwards' lieutenant slain. These are all that are yet written of.
This is the second time this month that the English have saved the whole camp and yet their valiant good service is smally considered; so that all men wish there were no soldiers in the country but Englishmen, who have now a noble speech among the magistrates and commons. God continue it long and ever.
All men cry out of the great disorder that continues still in Monsieur's camp; which if it be not amended, the good estate thereof cannot continue long. So it is grievous to hear the magistrates and commons the lamenting they make for want of better government.
Monsieur's camp lies still beside Ghent, and it is said that he will depart from Ghent to Antwerp at the end of this week; and all things are well again in the camp and at Ghent and Monsieur is very nobly used of the Gentners.—Bruges, 30 August 1582.
Add. Endd.pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 128.]
Aug. 31 295. Sir Richard Shelley to Walsingham
I acknowledge myself to be much bound to you for the good reports you have made of my faithfulness to the Queen; which office you of your modesty do not so enlarge in your own letter to me, as the Lord Treasurer, 'my great good lord,' has with all efficacy declared it to me. In consideration whereof it may seem I deserve some blame, that have been so slow in acknowledging the benefit that you did so 'lively,' and in answering your letter to me of so great comfort. But the cause has not been either my not conceiving your favour shewn to me so ample and effectual as it is, or my unreadiness to acknowledge it: for God forbid I should be guilty of such ingratitude.
The truth is, Sir Francis, seeing her Majesty accepted so graciously my good will and endeavour only to have her will fulfilled in her merchants' suit, I deferred writing from post to post, in hope to see and send her the accomplishment of her desire. Nevertheless both the lingering has been so long as I could never have imagined, and the effect fallen not otherwise than I looked for.
But since the answer to her letter, and the decree that I send, were passed by the Council that they call of Pregadi—for here I tell you things pass through many heads and hands—I have so debated the matter with General Foscarini and the Procurer Michaeli, senators here of the highest degree, and that profess to be her Majesty's particular servants (and my good lords'), that I dare say upon the confidence that I have in their honours, so soon as the last-increased customs have 'there' been taken away, as they gather to be her Majesty's intent, that a new order will then be taken, both for recompense of all that the merchants have already paid, and for the currants that they had bargained for before the publishing of the first decree in the Isle of Zante; and that they will receive such benefit by her commendation, as will well declare the authority she has in this famous Senate and Commonwealth.
Setting now aside the merchants' suit, which is a small matter in respect of the old amity that is now meant to be renewed, I dare avow to you that this state is so desirous of it as they shall thereby receive greater commodities in their traffic, and as it 'stands them more upon' for their own safety that there should be forthcoming a realm of England, and as we say, a Roland for an Oliver, to encounter these mighty nations of France and Spain; as King Henry VII, the Solomon of his time, foresaw, when all other princes had, as it were, conspired in Cambray against this Senate, that it was meet for the 'indemnity' of his Crown to maintain a State of Venice. And so he did not only advertise them of that league, but also, 'holpe' them both with counsel and with money. And touching these Venetian matters, both of our merchants and of the state, this for this time I think sufficient.
But concerning myself, and the desire I have to be at home, So I might there live Catholicly, truth it is (albeit I mean to be myself the first to write to you thereof) that I write nothing more. But since the tragedies caused, as the war in Ireland was, by a generation that I never 'leeked' I thought not the time yet seasonable to make that motion. In which opinion I was the more confirmed, because in all this while I had not from you any resolution thereof as your meaning was, at the writing of your letter, to have sent me by the next post. And so much the more, because my Lord Treasurer wrote to me the Queen's pleasure was that he should prove if I might be 'recovered' to conform myself to the religion there established; which clause was to me so strange, and so appalled me, that straight I thought 'my Cake was dough' (doohe). I hoped her Majesty had known me better than to think that to be possible, or a way meet for me to take for her service, which is the thing, God I call to witness, that I 'pretend'; for otherwise, being now a man of threescore years and eight. I little care in what country I be carried to my grave.
Then, utterly to reject this sorrowful 'propos,' and to relieve this heavy thought with a more pleasant imagination, I say that I am so desirous once 'ever' I die to see the Queen my sovereign, whom naturally, besides my duty, I have always been given to love and tender, and to discharge the duty of so faithful a subject as she has 'tried' me to be with three-and-twenty years' adversity, I mean, in discovering to her for her own safety and that of her realm such matter as to letters is not to be committed—for these causes I so long to kiss her hands, that if it may please her to grant me a passport, with my folks to come and go freely without any such examination as, upon occasions ministered of just jealousy, has of late been taken of suspected persons, and without any manner of communication to be had with me, saving only of matters of state for the Queen's safety and that of my country; seeing by the profession that I have made so many years in Spain and in 'Rome self' that I will live and die her true subject and servant, I have to 'indifferent understanders,' and to them that be not captious, sufficiently answered those interrogatories; then upon hope of this privilege to be granted me upon these considerations, I will further 'put myself in voyage,' though it be in a litter, to come and creep to her princely presence. Beseeching you that I may have speedy resolution, for this time I make an end,—Venice, last of August 1582.
P.S.—The above-named Procurer Michaeli, who is here a Senator of the highest degree, and was ambassador in France at the time of the Massacre in Paris, 'has him most heartily recommended' to you, as one that has in good remembrance the familiar friendship and conversation that was between you in those troublous times, and is here now in rebus secundis and come to the quietness of meminisse jurat. I assure you he speaks very honourably of your good nature and dexterity in affairs. (Signed) Richard Shelley of St. John's.
Aug. 14 Copy. 1582, the 14th August, in the Pregadi.—Secondly [? L'andera parte], that to gratify the Queen of England, the vexatious impost passed January 26, 1580, be by authority of this Council taken off, and that written orders be at once sent to our Governors at Zante and wherever necessary, when they are advised (as they shall be by us) that the Queen has on her side removed the increased duties laid upon our people's goods on those coasts, putting things back on the former terms, to execute and cause to be executed by all whom it concerns, the present decree, which otherwise may be taken to be revoked and null, the first part, of 1580, in that case holding good. It may be taken at the same time that when the above advice arrives, Paul Banning, Edward Housdon, Richard Glascoe, and other English merchants who owe for the new impost under that part, 1580, may be released from payment of that debt, having to give a fitting caution in this city, with a deposit (? partita morta) in the Bank, that in the event of the duties not being taken off by their Queen, the Signiory may be put back in possession of that account, and if they are taken off they may go free.
Add. with seal. Endd.pp. and Ital. ¾ p. [Venice I. 6.]
Aug. 31 296. John Norris to Walsingham
My cousin Stafford being ready to return to England, I thought good by him to advertise you how our skirmish passed yesterday, and the cause of it.
On Tuesday, our army lodging at Scellebelle, intending the next day to bring the cannon to Gavre, His Highness was advertised that the Prince of Parma had dislodged his camp from about 'Mening' in great diligence, and that his 'avantgard' was already arrived at Oudenarde. Hereupon command was given that all colonels and captains should repair to the camp, and bring it under the walls of Ghent. The marshals of the camp caused the baggage to dislodge about midnight, and yet careless to hasten the rest lingered so long that the enemy was in our lodging before we departed. I was commanded to make the retreat, and 'St Sevall,' a French colonel, to second me with some French shot. The enemy charged us very often upon the way, and [was] still repulsed with some loss. Our horsemen, by reason the way was strait, were put before us, to the end that when we should come to the plain they might have succoured us; which when we came to prove, we found the contrary, for they left us in the plain field, and thereby had caused our overthrow, if God had not blessed us. The French infantry who had the 'arriergard' bestirred themselves so well that they got before our English ensigns and could hardly after be procured to fight. In the end they brought us home to the walls and there charged us on every side, and had thought to have made us drown ourselves in the ditches, but that God so defended us that they have not any cause to brag of their enterprise. The other particulars I leave to the report of the bearer.—Ghent, this last of August 1582.
Add. Endd. by Walsingham: from my cousin Norris; and in a later hand: Lres from Mr. J. Norris and other captains. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 129.]
Aug. 31 297. Étienne Lesieur to Walsingham
On the 15th inst. I wrote you from Dunkirk what the Prince of Parma had replied to her Majesty's letters, and asked you to let me know what her pleasure would be in regard to the defraying of Mr Rogers's expenses. After that I continued my journey to these parts of Cleves, where I arrived on the 25th, and hearing that M. d Anholt was with Verdugo at the siege of Lochem, I sent a messenger to him to let him know that I had letters to him from the Prince of Parma, and to ask for a safe-conduct to go to him, which otherwise I cannot do owing to the soldiers of one side and the other who go to and fro between this place and that, and who threaten me on account of the capture of Mr Rogers's captor, who is still in the castle of Cleves and accuses me of being the cause of his apprehension. This long delay (respit) has been due to the discussion of his case, according to the laws of these countries. Next Tuesday is the last day for his reply, which will not be of much service to him, as the Chancellor tells me; but execution will be done upon him. I have today received M. d'Anholt's answer, and my opinion is that he will consent to the liberation of Mr Rogers, provided that expenses are paid. Wherefore I again humbly beg you to let me know how I am in future to conduct myself herein; which when I have heard, I will use all diligence. The sum is about 10,000 Brabant florins, or more.
Today news in come that Lochem has been revictualled and relieved by Count Hohenlohe and a French regiment, but not without great loss on both sides. This is said to have occurred yesterday, so no details are yet known.
M. d'Anholt is staying at Siburg near Cologne. When I know M. d'Anholt's reply I will take my journey to him, with her Majesty's letter.—Cleves, the last of August 1582.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Germany II. 36.]
Aug. 31 298. Walsingham to Cobham
You may find it strange that this bearer, your servant, has been stayed here thus long, but the cause of it proceeds 'for that' her Majesty finds fault with the great charge she is at in the conveying of so many dispatches out of France and thither. Wherefore, unless there fall out matter of importance that requires to be necessarily advertised, you will do well to forbear to send so often. And yet she found fault that you did not with more speed advertise of the 'success' that Don Antonio's fleet has had against the King of Spain's; for before the receipt of your letters the French ambassador had received advertisements of it by two several couriers, who brought news that the French had had the better, but because it is not confirmed by you, we here give no credit to it.
The cause of my present dispatch is only to acquaint you with what has lately happened in Scotland, of which you will understand the particulars by the enclosed. Archibald Douglas, who you know is a man of good judgement, tell me that the duke is not likely to find any great party in this action; for both he and Arran are generally so hated in Scotland that few will venture to take their part, so that we have now, I hope, little cause to fear any danger or inconvenience to grow from thence. The discovery of some meaning that there 'should be' to seize certain of the nobility there, whereof you have been advertised by a nobleman, I judge was the cause of the hastening of the execution of this enterprise. Her Majesty has hereupon despatched Sir George Carey and Mr. Bowes into Scotland to make offer to the king of anything that she may so for the safety of his person and the quieting of the state of his realm, as also to 'comfort' the noblemen with the promise of her best help and assistance to reduce things there to some good terms. If either Pinart or some other shall 'move any speech' to you of this matter, as it is not unlikely, 'but' that Mauvissière has already written thither of it, you may let them understand that there is nothing done therein without the king's consent, who now apparently found that by running the course he was by these ill-affected instruments round him led into, he was likely to lose the love and goodwill of all his people, to the manifest danger of the overthrow of his state and person, and that her Majesty has sent thither to 'stay that' no violent course 'shall be' held in the matter, but that all things may proceed orderly, without any alteration, and these men receive their trial by the ordinary course of law.
Her Majesty, when she heard that your packet had been intercepted, greatly misliked that you had not written in cypher that which concerned the King of Navarre; for now, the dispatch being come into the hands of the enemy, the whole substance of that negotiation is discovered to them; wherefore you will do well in like case hereafter to use your cypher.—Oatlands, this last of August 1582.
Draft. Endd. by L. Tomson. 1½ pp. On back: These are to require you to pay or cause to be paid to the bearer hereof, Paulo Citolino, for carriage of letters in post for her Majesty's affairs to Sir Henry Cobham, knight, his Highness' ambassador resident in France, being at Paris, this day, the sum of. Dated at Ot. [France VIII. 32.]
End of August 299. The Council of State in the Low Countries to the Queen
Whereas the merchants trading by sea have complained to us that certain ships of war, fitted out in your Majesty's realm under pretext of entering the service of Don Antonio, are boarding, holding to ransom, and enforcing the vessels coming here, directed to merchants resident in this country, the which is contrary to the ancient freedom of traffic, and very prejudicial thereto; and they will do more if steps be not taken in time, the boldness of evildoing being wont to increase by impunity; therefore the merchants have requested us humbly to beg your Majesty, that for the conservation of traffic and the treaties to that end made between you and the princes of this country, you will take order that no hindrance or annoyance be caused by those armed ships, whether on the high seas or in port, to ships coming from Portugal or Spain or other quarters, towards these countries. This we have not, for the sake of the obligations upon us to assist the merchants of these parts in a matter so just and reasonable and so much concerning the public weal of these countries, been able to decline; and therefore pray that having regard to the above, and seeing that it is as important to the security of merchants your subjects to be safe from all robberies which in a precarious time might be committed under any pretext by pirates or others you will charge your admirals and all ships of war as well as the captains of your ports to see that no such robberies are committed by any ships under pretence of being in Don Antonio's service, and arrest any they find acting contrary and proceed against them as pirates, by seizure of their persons and ships.—Ghent. (Signed), The Prince of Orange and others of the Council of State.
Copy. Endd. by L. Care. Fr. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVII. 100.]