Elizabeth: June 1582, 11-15

Pages 76-90

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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June 1582, 11–15

June 11. 82. Mauvissière to Walsingham.
I am very sorry to importune you so often on so many occasions which arise in this office. However, since you are the person in the post to which I may have recourse, you will the more readily excuse me, when I ask you to be at the pains of reading the two memorials which I lately caused Courcelles to lay before you by the wish of the Queen, after having communicated the subject to her by the express desire of the king my master, who also desired me to speak about it to all of the Council. The larger memorial contains only the request of the poor people who are here to sue for their ship and the refusal that has been made to give it up to them in virtue of the order made both by the Council and the Judge of the Admiralty. If you again consider their poverty and the justice of their cause, you would pity them. They have eaten their very shirts in prosecuting the case of their ship, and without me they would die of hunger here.
The other memorial which I am sending you contains a statement of various ships detained in various ports of this kingdom, found by one of my men who accompanied these people here, as stated in the memorial; and I am further assured of it by persons who tell me that there are a great quantity of others of which I will give you the names. Some are equipped for war, some in freight as will be verified in any way you please. But I must tell you that I have also had a very particular recommendation from the king on behalf of the Hermine of Brest, of 120 tons, which was taken by Mr Henry Knollys, laden with cloths to the value of over £20,000 sterling, which have been sold within this realm. The vessel is still at Southampton, where the master went out of his mind with despair, and in that condition was taken to our Court by his wife and children, who are pitied by everybody. I have pressed this case before, but have had no success. I beg that the ship at Southampton (where it is suffering damage) may be restored; and I may say that if any English ships are known to be in French ports, let a note of them be sent to me, and they shall be at once restored, and such order shall be taken as will content you.
Once more, not to be troublesome, I beg that you will at least have the ships of Piriac and Brest restored.—London, 11 June 1582.
Add. Endd. Fr.pp. [France VII. 98.]
June 12. 83. Horatio Pallavicino to Walsingham.
I wrote to you briefly on the 4th and sent you such reports as I had. The more I consider them, the more I think that nothing certain can be gathered from them, save the malevolence of those capital and perpetual enemies of good men's repose and tranquillity. As to the vigorous execution of their designs, I pray God it may fall short. The full statement [? l'ordinario] of those troops is not yet to hand; if I hear anything more about it, I will advise you.
While I am staying here in complete idleness, awaiting the result of this man's journey to Rome, I have nothing more at heart than that all my actions should be of service or give satisfaction to her Majesty; wherefore I beg you to let me know wherein I may make my desire apparent, for I shall not fail to use all diligence.
Letters from Spain came on the 5th inst, but there was nothing new of any importance, and all preparations were going on there as slowly as usual. Of other parts I will give you no news, because the ambassador can do it with much more certainty. I will only say that Signor Masino del Bene gave me the annexed (alegate) for you.—Paris, 12 June 1582.
Add. Endd. Ital. ¾ p. [Ibid, VII. 99.]
June 13. 84. Piero Capponi to Walsingham.
You will be probably approached [? facilmente rieierco] by Signor Mannucci for some favour, on account of the fact that my Venetian partners have been left the creditors of certain sureties who have failed. These persons have in England some goods which I should wish Signor Mannucci to attach. I will at once have a power of attorney sent to him by my partners and the debt will be proved; but as everything depends upon being the first, I have not been able to send it herewith. I shall be much pleased if you will assist him and show him what favour you can, and I shall be under an eternal obligation to you, besides all the others.— Paris, 12 June 1582.
Add. Endd. Ital. 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 100.]
June 13. 85. Herle to Walsingham.
I have been in Holland by the space of 23 days, where I met with Mr Gilpin, secretary to the 'nation,' on Wednesday in Whitsun week, at the Hague. That night he took his journey in good diligence towards Emden by Haarlem, as the surest way into Germany, whither his business addressed him.
The same Wednesday came M. de 'Roka,' ambassador to the King of Navarre, to the Hague likewise; with whom I should have been acquainted, but that I refused the Earl of Hollock's supper, for fear of excess. The ambassador intended to travel to Utrecht, to see the place, and confer somewhat with the Land Raed that might tend to Monsieur's credit, and assure them of friends enough for the supporting of their cause and liberties; which done, he meant to go to her Majesty.
The King of Portugal's agent was at the Hague, with commission for shipping from Monsieur, and had thereupon warrant from the States to make his choice, so he agreed with the owners, who with-out money will part with nothing. Yet he chose three ships, which are not likely to be ready in haste, 'nor that action from hence to have any great heat.' One Martin Dro of Zealand was to be admiral of the Holland and Zealand ships. I am still of that opinion, for reasons too prolix to trouble you with, that the preparations in France will prove vain for Don Antonio; yet as 'Pedro d'Oro' assured me yesterday, I understand that 170 sail with 7,000 soldiers have already left France and are at Belle Isle towards the voyage. But please observe the sequel, and be advertised that the King of Spain has settled his government very peaceably in Portugal, provided for defence and offence, and remains secure against all invasion that may be offered him.
Out of Holland will be sent one Griphens Buis, a civilian, to the sea-towns and to the King of Denmark about their traffic, and to be assured against the King of Denmark if he should persist in the new aggravations that he is imposing upon their ships and goods.
There is a secret contract passed between Monsieur and certain frontier lords who hold of the Bishops of Cologne and Liége, and of the Duke of Cleves; which lords (the Count of Meure, de Lamarck, etc.), when the time serves, will declare themselves with the States of these countries, and with Monsieur. Truly a wise providence, and serves to great purpose to be well neighboured, and to weaken thereby their overmighty neighbours that 'malice' this side. The Bishop of Liege has established the Inquisition in his country, which presages some great league made in that behalf, wherein he discovers himself first.
Mr Norris and his troops are at last 'set contented' of some part of their pay and embark at Schoorhoven to come into Flanders to the camp, not unlooked for, Monsieur having reposed his 'resting' (?) in them for the relief of Oudenarde, his other aids, that are looked for out of France, being slow. Mr Norris has 1,500 foot and 350 horse in the troops that he brings hitherwards, truly very gallant fellows and well appointed; and will have under him in all, when his regiment is full, 5,000 English foot at least and 700 horse. To whose government if he add exercise of religion, justice, and discipline (as I trust in his discretion he will regard that principally), he will do good service to these States, and quickly dissolve these petty divisions that are among, the captains, more to his credit than any private desire could bring him to.
At my return from Holland hither last Monday, I found two letters for me, one from the Earl of Leicester, the other from yourself, both so tenderly written, with such honourable respect to my poor causes, that I think myself bound to either of you while breath and memory remain. And truly as you shall find me towards you a creature that loves and honours you with his heart, so a thankful person to be commanded in whatsoever you shall impose; and if you vouchsafe to employ me in any cause you may like, I will render testimony of my obedience, with the truth and diligence that appertain. I thank you for your favour promised me towards the ending of my cause with Mr Wade, to whom I will endeavour myself, as his good friend, not only to satisfy him to my utmost power, but be thankful for the regard he shall use to my present poverty, in which the impediment has consisted that he was not answered before this. I assure you that I have settled myself here to attend some occasion that may be offered to do my country service, and therein to be at your devotion according to the place you hold. To the achieving whereof I have as small means as may be, having consigned my pension in England to the maintenance and bringing up of four little infants, children to a sister of mine deceased; besides which I have no other living nor aid; but I will constantly bear it out and by my painful endeavour make myself able to do somewhat. The 'rest' which her Majesty gave me for the 'answering' of my debts is in the disposition of the 'ffeffyes' [qy. feoffees], who can do nothing as yet, till she have signed my 'bill of note' to the use of the country (?) that has bought her grant of the feoffees; and hereof it depends that I could neither make satisfaction to Mr Wade, nor put him in assurance of that which in reason I should have done at the instant of our agreement. But my lord of Leicester by his last letter has shown me that the bill for her Majesty's signature is delivered him by Mr Osburne, and that he will not fail to dispatch it, with the first 'commodity' that is offered; which I commend to both your favours.
In the letter you wrote me, you willed that I should inform myself whence the bruit arose that we were in civil dissension in England, and to what effect it was so bruited, and from whom it proceeded. To which purpose I have set down in writing certain secret 'collections' of my observing from the last of April till the Kith of May, which I hope will satisfy you, and discover that of which your wisdom shall be better able to judge than I either to conceive or express in writing. As it concerns some mysteries indeed, I mean to send it by an assured messenger this next week, commending it to your secrecy. And if you vouchsafe, for increase of my credit here, which by my proper industry I have made somewhat, to write anything to the Prince, to du Plessis, to Sainte-Aldegonde (who now is absent) or to Villiers, it were my desire that I might have the delivering and the soliciting thereof in Mr Gilpin's absence. This were a favour that would give me countenance to do you some good service indeed. Referring it to your consideration, I leave it. In the rest, I have done her Majesty, and do daily, some good offices, that may express me her faithful servant; being in good terms with Monsieur, who uses me well, and has often conferred with me at good length of sundry causes. Yet I have been 'shot at' here out of England by some means, whereof Marchaumont was made an instrument; who is now as far out of grace with Monsieur as Simier, and is like upon his return here to have his passport for altogether, within this month. You must have an eye to Bacqueville, for I am advertised from a good place that he has both the will and the means to practise with us, and does in good earnest proceed to undermine us. 1 will inform you more of this by my next; for there is a plot laid to stir up divisions in England, and to win some interest in the Scottish Queen, that her Majesty may be constrained to favour some side the more, and to have need of them.
I desired Mr Doyley to advertise you of some part of these things following, which lest he have not done, I will set them down myself. First, the 'having' of Bouchain failed; for Noyelles' intent, by his own imperfections, was discovered and resisted before the matter was come to ripeness, and he constrained to forsake his charge by flying to Cambray, leaving the reputation of a drunken sot behind him.
Count Lalaing did not so much die of the hurt received from his horse, which was slight, as of apprehensions, being discovered to have treated with Monsieur here, whereby he should have delivered up the charge that he had in Hainault and have revolted upon the first opportunity. But being prevented by the Prince of Parma's foresight, and threatened by his letters, it broke his heart, and was the occasion of his death. Of this secret treaty, with him and others from hence, I have mentioned somewhat heretofore.
The Viscount of Ghent, exercising at present the state of lieutenant-general under the Prince of Parma, is said to be apprehended and sent prisoner to the Castle of Tournay; which would make a great stay of things on the one side, and much alter our course here, building upon some event unlooked for, which failing might ruin the rest. (Added in margin: This report of the Viscount of Ghent is found to be untrue.) And as far as I can perceive, Monsieur's refuge' for the relieving of Oudenarde upon the sudden depends upon the English forces that are with Mr Norris; for of the French troops that were said to be at Cambray there is as yet no certain assurance. 'Mary,' Biron is on the frontier with the bands of the men-at-arms of France, whose disposition is not to give furtherance to those causes. The 'Dutch Butters' appear not either, and so things 'run in length.' It would seem that the Prince of Parma is assured of somewhat, for in all security he has intrenched his army before Oudenarde on two sides; so that neither sally from the town can 'offend' him, nor without, 'endommayge' him without precipitation of our side [sic]. He has chosen the ravelin before the gate to which the castle serves as a flanker, there to make his battery; and has beaten it in in such sort that what with the ravelin that is fallen into the ditch, and a trench [sic] rolled into it 'from his campwards,' he made some 'mean' passage over, but not sufficient. Yet he assaulted the breach with great fury, and was no less furiously repulsed. But he 'persists' his battery; by which he will prevail, if 'brief' aid come not. The town is not so stored with munition as was 'voiced,' nor their ability so great to defend, but if the place be lost, Monsieur's reputation and the Prince's will be shrewdly diminished, and the whole country 'suffer wrack.' It was a hard 'province' that Monsieur undertook, to advance three months' pay beforehand of his own money, amounting to 900,000 guilders; whereof if he miss, the States will return their portions and affairs be reduced to great difficulty.
The letters from Italy coming hitherward were intercepted last week about Buremonde; yet it is constantly affirmed by other advertisements that 1,200 horsemen of the kingdom of Naples and 1,600 out of Lombardy, with 10,000 footmen, are marching down-wards towards this service, and that the King of Spain will set up his rest here this year. The leaders are Prospero Colonna, Baptista de Monte, and others.
M. Bellievre has departed, leaving behind him a 'heap full' of promises and fair words, grounded altogether upon 'connivency,' but otherwise upon small substance. He made difficulty for the passage of the reiters through Picardy, the same being stayed by the king's commandment. He promised that the king would contribute 50,000 crowns monthly towards the wars, and that the passages of Calais and Mèzieres should be no more open to the enemy; which is thought to hold no great sincerity for all his assurances. He urged extremely the 'religious vrede,' and to have as many churches for the exercise of the Catholic religion as the Protestants had, whereby you may guess what the French 'pretend' in the end. You will see, of my word, a horrible confusion, when the French army is assembled here, and some mischief break out that may not be written of. The Prince of Orange and Bellièvre had most secret and long negotiations together, which is not a whit liked here. They harp still on the marriage with her Majesty, and aid out of England; it being very freshly given out that Monsieur will urge the Queen to a resolution touching the marriage and press her with her promise; Bellièvre having left instructions behind him, so it is calculated, how to proceed therein.
The Duke of Guise, beside the late provisions of powder and munition that he sent into Scotland, is sending more out of Normandy, and providing arms of all sorts for the same country. It is to be provided for in time; for be you assured that d'Aubigny will leave nothing undone that may warrant his own estate against England, or give credit to the Duke of Guise's designs in Scotland. He has great designs in hand, of which I wrote to you and the Earl of Leicester before.
There has been some bruit here that Geneva was besieged, and that the French king concurred in that action; whereat one of the principal magistrates of this town (in margin: viz. Sanfort) said openly: “What the devil do we then with his brother here, to betray our cause. We will rather dismiss him with a passport' to-morrow next,' and be rid of him without dread of inward danger.”
The Prince of Orange is subject to catarrhs and melancholy of late; also to passions otherwise than his wit was wont to be inclined to. The former vigour appears not to be in him, being directed wholly by those that are near him. I speak plainly and truly.
Sainte-Aldegonde is gone into Zealand to recruit himself, though a very ill air for a 'Tysick,' which has prevailed much upon him and is thought to threaten his life.
I have taken a house here, which costs me after the rate of 200 guilders a year, so that I shall from henceforth be resident in this town, if you please to direct any commands to me.
Col. Morgan finds the Prince of Orange very favourable to him, having by his means a 'prest' of 6,000 guilders granted him, and a quarter for the assembling of his new ensigns. Besides the Prince is in hand to dissolve the new bands, and mislikes the division that is among our men, and 'namely' those that have opposed themselves to the former regiments. But when Mr Norris comes, I will do some good office, though part of them be unworthy of it.—Antwerp, 13 June 1582.
P.S.—Herewith is a 'retraytt' of Oudenarde, but I will send you one more 'absolute'; beseeching you to take this and the other papers enclosed in good part in the meantime, though haply you be furnished of them before. Also please pardon this my rugged hand, and the paper that in haste I was fain to scribble upon.
Add. Endd. 6 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVI. 34.]
June 13. 86. Cobham to Walsingham.
I thought to have delivered to the king what was contained in your last dispatch by Davis, and sought means to have had access to him, he being lodged hard by at Madame Carnavalet's house; but so privately that he permits no resort to him, so that I could find no 'commodity' to be admitted to his presence.
The Queen Mother and her daughter of Navarre repair at times to Paris, but sojourn for the most part at 'St. Moro,' to which house it is thought the king will shortly resort, and leave Fontaine-bleau. He was the other day at Saint-Maur to visit them, and persuaded by both queens to send for his wife and the rest of the Court.
The young queen, they say, is become lean and much altered with her diet, being very unwilling to go to the baths at Bourbon-nais, though persuaded thereto by the king.
M. Bellièvre is returned, and has had access to his Majesty, but the occasion of his going to Flanders is kept secret.
The Prince Dauphin, M. Laval, 'the' Rochefoucault, continue their levies and preparations to transport themselves into the service of Monsieur.
Letters came yesterday from Guise in Picardy, certifying that Monsieur's reiters are thereabouts, ready to pass into Cambrésis, waiting for some French horse and foot to join them.
The papists in the town of Foix in Languedoc have used violence towards the Protestants; whereon those of the Religion took the castle, and so became masters of the town, in which broil were slain about 200. Otherwise all those countries are in appearance in very good repose.
Advertisements are now come to the Court that the King of Navarre returns to Saint-Jean-d'Angely about the end of this month.
They say in Court that the king will appoint Marshal Matignon to take away the government of Blaye from young Lansac.
The Duke of Mercœur had letters this week from Lorraine that 12 companies of foot and 300 horse had been levied in Burgundy, and were beginning to march for the service of King Philip.
The secretary of the Spanish ambassador had the other day a passport signed by the king to license certain Spanish merchants of Rouen to transport 100,000 crowns by sea to Gravelines. I have certified M. de Réau, the Duke of Brabant's agent, of this; but I doubt he has not means to do as he would therein.
The affairs of Geneva remain in a manner in the same state they were in, without any act of hostility having passed on any side
The Swiss cantons resolved in their diet to send to the Duke of Savoy, protesting that if he do not depart from the enterprise, they will lay to their hands, and use their forces in favour of those of Geneva. Those of Bern have increased their garrisons on the frontiers with great diligence.
Letters have come from Lisbon that the Spanish king was gone to Almeria with the Empress; and further that the ships prepared for the voyage to Terceira had come together in the mouth of the harbour of Lisbon. The king had placed the Spanish infantry in and about Lisbon, having in readiness upon all occasions 6,000 bisogni and 1,500 old soldiers, besides the 1,500 Almaines. and had reinforced the garrisons in Setubal, Cascaes, and other places.
The Marquis of Santa Cruz is commanded to keep the coast of Galicia and the port of Lisbon with 40 galleys. The Catholic king appoints 400 voluntary Castilian horsemen to come to the frontiers of Portugal and 6 galleys to remain always in the mouth of the Lisbon river, where he is likewise building three forts, fitting them with much artillery.
Advertisements are come from the Indies that the person whom the king sent there last year was not received by the viceroy, but repulsed with much discontent.
Letters are come from Terceira showing how those of that isle with the aid of the French and English have taken the isle of St. Michael.
Taxis the Spanish agent had letters this week from Milan advertising him that at Savona beside Genoa 3,000 soldiers had arrived from Spain.
There is little advertised from Italy other than the confirmation of the practice intended by the Conte D'Alandi Scoti, and the Marquis Dalvisini, and Danguissole, against the Duke of Parma, which was discovered.
The French king has been given to understand by letters from Spain that the Catholic king has commanded the Marquis of Santa Cruz in any wise to fight with Strozzi before he has landed anywhere.—Paris, 13 June 1582.
Add. and Endt. gone. 4 pp. [France VII. 101.]
June 13. 87. Cobham to Walsingham.
I have been visited by the governor of my young lord of Both well, and understand from him that the young earl is zealously bent in religion, and well affected to her Majesty. He intends to return to Scotland about the end of July. So methinks if he might pass through England, and thereby become thoroughly confirmed in her favour and made assured to remain a friend in Scotland, it were well. I think I need not remind you of his estate and ability, nor of the 'match of his marriage'; but I wish everyone of value won to my sovereign. Those in these parts who tender her welfare doubt some practice is being 'trained' in Scotland, upon the send-ing of the powder, and on the repair to the Guises of sundry who deal here in the Scottish causes.
This our Christian king is not thoroughly well in health, having during his diet lost some of his teeth, and 'feels a disposition of' a fistula in an evil place. He shows notwithstanding much cheerful-ness, passing his time at St. Germans in causing new saints to be made and painted. He waxes much subject to melancholy humours. The old queen with her daughter of Navarre intends to repair to Monceaux before they settle at Saint-Maur.
It is written from Italy in these last letters that 10,000 soldiers are levying in the country of Naples and other places of Italy. They certify from Rome that Signor Horatio Pallavicini's brother is released from prison, but left maimed in his arms from the tortures he has received.
I thank you for the good hope you give me of my private cause and beg you to continue your goodness in my behalf, and that you will be pleased to show gracious manner to this bearer, my nephew Kerton, who married one of my brother Tho. Cobham's daughters, and is returned from Italy. I hear the Bishop of Ross has departed by the post towards Avignon; it is like into Spain.—Paris, 13 June 1582.
Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Ibid. VII. 102.]
June 13. 88. Horatio Pallavicino to Walsingham.
I hear this morning that an Italian friend here has received letters from Rome of the 28th ult. in which are the following words: 'Signor Pallavicino has been released from prison, but with his arms in bad case, and the Englishmen who were the cause of this trouble are so closely imprisoned that no one knows any-thing of them.' You see that the cruelty of my adversaries could not be sated with the imprisonment and other ill-usage, without adding torture, by which my good brother, naturally very delicate, must have been left in a condition not difficult to imagine. I never believed that the tyranny of that government could have gone to such excesses against an innocent person, and one against whom it was impossible to have any lawful evidence. But their malignity and perfidious disposition has easily broken all the bounds of law and justice. I pray God to do vengeance for it, or permit honest men to do it on earth with their hands; and I hope to see it, if I die of no ill other than old age.
These letters from Italy mention that 6,000 Italians and 3,000 Spaniards were being collected for Spain and Portugal. In Lombardy 4,000 Italians and 2,000 horses were being collected for Flanders, to start at the end of this month. But those who are going to Portugal, if fortune, or the industry of men do not give them cause to find their occupation therein, I think it may be much feared will be employed to the injury of her Majesty, either in Ireland, or 'there,' having no doubt that the Spaniards' inclination is stimulated with every persuasion by those of Rome. You can consider it better than I can suggest it.—Paris, 13 June 1582.
Add. Endd. Ital. 1 p. [France VII. 103.]
June 14. 89. Mauvissière to Burghley and Walsingham.
I have several times spoken to you on behalf of an Englishman named Nicolson, whom I have found so trustworthy and honest that I would trust him with my life, and I esteem him the more because I am sure he would die for the Queen's service and for the honour of your country. And having a son who is English by his birth I was asked by my wife to give him Nicolson for his tutor, and as such we have kept him two years in our service as one who has many languages and much knowledge, even German, which among others I desire my son to learn. He has for the second time been imprisoned and maltreated by his relations, who would have his property. I know him to be the sort of man who if he has a crown gives it to the poor, and with all his knowledge, I never knew a man of a gentler nature. I have sent word to him that if he has committed the very least fault against his sovereign or in regard to the regulations of her state [en la pollitie de son estat] I should be the first to try to get him punished for it; to which he replies that if he has been in fault, has written or said anything in the least degree deserving of blame, he is willing to die, and that they may look into the bottom of his stomach and his heart without finding anything but the duty and service which he owes to the Queen and her Council and to his state. Besides he was not brought up nor educated in England, nor indeed should he expect ever to have the means of living there, since a brother of his, a doctor of divinity, brought him up and taught him in his youth at Paris and has since maintained him at the universities, especially at 'Loveins' in Flanders. If all that he says is true, and you find him innocent and an honest man, because I have chosen him to live with my son, I beg you to have him set free; if not, and he has committed a fault against your laws and your state, I wash my hands of him.—London, 14 June 1582.
P.S.—I will here add, if you please, my recommendation on behalf of the poor Frenchmen who are trying to get two ships of theirs and their relatives, namely the François of Piriac and the Hermine of Brest, taken by Mr Henry Knollys with 80,000 crowns' worth of cloth which have been sold within this realm in the presence of the owner of the ship. He went out of his mind, and had a chain for two years round “his body until he died of despair at the loss of all his property. His wife and children are every day on their knees before the king, with much importunity. I will send you further a note of 32 French ships which one of my people has seen in the harbours of this realm, as the bearers will tell you, if you will hear them, and 30 more in places which they have heard of by writing, of which I should like to speak in general to all the members of the Council. And I will say that if there be any stayed in the ordinary way (en nature) in any port of France and it can be found, orders shall be given for its release as soon as asked. Many disorders have been committed during the troubles by robbers and pirates which cannot be redressed, but for the ordinary cases there is a remedy. I am trying to get completion of payment to Mr Warcop, to whom the king has been pleased to make a gratuity out of his finances, seeing nothing in the ordinary way to which he could go for it.
Please accept what I have added as necessary to the maintenance of the amity between these realms, for which I have always laboured and do labour.
Add. Endd. by Burghley's secretary. Fr. 3 pp. [France VII. 104.]
June 14. 90. Geoffroy le Brumen to Walsingham.
Though owing to my long absence I have nothing worth writing to you, I will send this line both to recall myself to your kind memory and to request that if the gentleman comes to whom you wrote in my favour for the ship of Havre, as I understand he is to come, you will favour those to whom I left a power of attorney in my absence, in order that by your authority and means they may come to a mutual agreement. I . . . . sir, that if Master Joachim is paid before my return, I may not be forgotten. I lent him some £7 or £8 in money, not counting various tools necessary for him to make his experiments, all in the desire that he might do what should be agreeable and profitable to you all.
When I left London, I thought to come and see you in the matter of Joachim and certain overtures that he had made; but I was in such a hurry to start on account of Sir Edward Unton, that I was compelled to abandon all my other business. And indeed it was high time to get there. Two days later there would have been a great risk of his life, for he had a great part of his leg gangrened and mortified, which had to be taken away with great difficulty since it was over the sinews of the foot. He had besides œdematous and phlegmonic tumours, all requiring different remedies, with great inflammation. However, thank God, who was pleased to bless our labours, he is in a good way to get well, and I have a sure hope of it. Nevertheless I think I shall not be able to go and see you as soon as I desire, for I believe he will not let me go till he is quite cured; and for my part I have plenty of business and should not like to leave it, both on account of the need that I see in him, and for his own honesty, besides the love that he and his son Mr Henry bear towards you, as I see whenever you come into their conversation whether in public or in private. I had great fear at first for his life, because the offensive vapours from the gangrened flesh injured the noble parts. He even fell into syncope and coma with other bad symptoms. For this reason he made his will, and gave Christian admonitions to his children. I perceive that he wishes to do a good deal for his younger son Mr Henry, especially in ready money, because he cannot make him his heir to the prejudice of his elder brother, and indeed Mr Henry deserves it, being of as good parts as any gentleman of his age that I know. I understand that he wishes to buy some place, wherein you show yourself much his friend. He holds himself greatly bound to you for it, and I testify to them all that I am sure you will willingly do them pleasure, both because Mr Henry's wife is a relation of Lady Walsingham, and especially because they strive to extend the kingdom of Christ, whereat you rejoice, as I have heard from you; and indeed they keep good order in their house and establish good ministers here.
I think that M. de la Roque is with you, who will tell you of the state of France. However there are still fears as to the naval armament.
I forgot to mention that among Sir Edward's instructions (remonstrances) to his son one was that he should govern himself by your advice and that of those of the Religion; which he promised and I hope will perform.—Ouddle [Wadley], 14 June 1582.
Add, Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [France VII.105.]
June 14. 91. John Dowes to Walsingham.
After my departure from Dieppe I went over to Havre de Grace, where hearing that companies of soldiers were being levied in Lower Normandy, I would not fail to go thither to know the truth about their designs. It appeared that M. de Fervaques who is colonel of these companies, amounting to 50 or thereabouts, had charge from the king to levy them, and they are by no means assembled, and are being assembled with difficulty, at Lisieux, at Brions, Pont-1'Eveque, and Pontaudemer, and are distributed among the villages round about those places. They have been levied without beat of drum and without much noise; which causes a rumour to be spread that when they are assembled they will retire to the coast of Britanny, and it is said they reckon only that M. de Brissac, commander of the army which is still in the neighbourhood of Britanny, will employ them in his enterprise. It is true that some ships of that army sailed to the southward, but after three days they returned and rejoined them with their troopships, which are still there today.
On arriving at Rouen on the 12th inst. I heard that some companies had left the town and the neighbourhood à la file, and taken the road to Picardy under the command of M. de Crevecĉur, and were keeping out of sight in small companies in the towns and villages of Picardy awaiting orders to depart; and the rumour goes that it is to join Monsieur in the Low Countries. Those of the Religion hold that they are acting under the orders of M. de Guise, and that it is he who finds their pay, and they are well paid, and live on their own money. They say too that M. de Guise is soon going to visit the Cardinal of Bourbon at Gaillon, and thence will go to give order along the coast.
M. de Ligle bids me not fail to let you know that M. Capponi goes about very much with some Spaniards at Rouen who are great enemies of the Religion, and even goes to mass with them at their chapel which they have founded at the Cordeliers in Rouen; for he and others have seen him going there and have doubted that when he returns to England he will do some turn for them.
As to what I wrote you about Geneva, it is held for certain that the enemy has retired defeated by their people, and that the Bernese have seized the four bailiwicks which they surrendered by composition. It is said too that the King of Navarre has sent two good captains into Geneva. Also that some troops of these armies which are being levied having been sent into Gascony have thought to surprise the town of Foix, belonging to him; but a good many of their people were left there, and they withdrew 'with a short shame,' and the King of Navarre has sent to the king, who professes to know nothing about it, and that it was none of his doing. In conclusion those of the Religion hold for certain that it is the culmination of their holy League which they wish to accomplish; and under the name of the King of Portugal is understood by those of the Religion the king of the League, appointed by the Pope to accomplish it if he can, whatever pretext is put forward. I hear too that the other day M. de Guise sent those of his household into England. They went by Montreuil, and the governor conducted them as far as Boulogne. They crossed into England on the way to Scotland, to negotiate about Guise's enterprise. When I have heard more fully, I will come to you with all diligence.— Rouen, 14 June 1582.
Add. Endd. Fr. Not same hand as No. 75, but same signature.pp. [France VII. 106.]
June 15. 92. Fremyn to Walsingham.
I have told you already how the town of Oudenarde had been battered with 23 pieces, on the 4th inst. at a ravelin, where the enemy gave an ineffectual assault. Since then they have gone on firing at the defences and some towers, without regular battery, firing sometimes 10 rounds, sometimes 7, and that at intervals, to astonish the besieged; even up to 1,800 rounds, without making any or very little progress, except upon the defences, seeing that they would gain little by battery. At present they are after trying to fill up the ditch with fascines and earth, having won the foot of the ravelin, to avail themselves of the earth when they are on the scarp, in order then to get to the foot of the rampart to effect their design. They have summoned the besieged to surrender, and it seems that they were content to come to terms if the composition were similar to that of Tournay; which was refused by the enemy. Thus the matter remained incomplete on either side, and the besieged were stimulated (enaigris) to do their best for their preservation, with plenty of entrenchments, determined to hold out to the end. If they will only do it, all will go well. His Highness has sent them a letter into the town, to be of good courage, and that he will succour them shortly without fail. God grant that it may not be the doctor when the patient is dead; for if the place fails before his Highness's forces are in the field, there will be a good deal of murmuring, as there is. Meanwhile his Highness is making all possible speed, and people here are very slow in doing what is required, and in furnishing money, which causes their trouble.
Our camp is small. There are some 1,000 horse and 2,500 foot, who daily beat up the enemy's quarters. We have frightened him; he has withdrawn the cavalry from our side, and placed it on the side of Tournay in the meadows to encamp. Three companies of Burgundian men-at-arms are come to them and some infantry as a reinforcement. Mr Norris is not yet arrived in our camp. He is being devoutly awaited there. We are in a camp without money, victuals, or munitions; money, diligence, and good order are lacking to us.—Camp by Ghent, 15th June 1582
P.S.—You will have heard what has happened at Bruges. Matters are not going as they ought.
Add. Endd. Fr.pp. [Holl and Fl. XVI. 35.]