Elizabeth: January 1583, 1-5

Pages 1-13

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 17, January-June 1583 and Addenda. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1913.

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January 1583, 1–5

A.D. 1583.
Jan. 1.
1. T. Doyley to Walsingham.
Your letter of December 24 I received on the 29th. I perceive you have not received my letters, first of the dangerous sickness, then of the death of Mr. Knollys.
Monsieur's Court was never so great and pestered with a crowd of gentlemen as it now is.
M. Bonivet, with divers French troops, our English cornets, and some of our infantry, surprised Eyndhoven in Brabant; but the Italians there in garrison took the castle and held it good. But a Dutch cornet, 'presently at the writing of these' coming from thence, told me that our men have now taken the castle. The French army lies still in 'Dermond Land' and about the Land of 'Waste,' and the news in the Court is hot that they are marching towards Eyndhoven, to avoid a 'reprise'; which happened lately to the same town when taken before by the 'Grave Van Holloc.' Every man's mouth sounds 'A la guerre,' supposing that the enemy is a-foot towards it, not minding to lose it so 'slightly,' being in the midst of the land Bolduc, Breda, Helmont by Liége-land [sic].
The enemy lies towards Tournay, removing thither to refresh their army, having left behind them about Brussels, with sickness and famine, 2,000 men. They are also in 'great hot terms' of mutiny; our burghers report that they spoil abbeys and churches for their pay, and the mutineers going toward Mons in Hainault, and not suffered to enter the town, kill all that come out. 'As may be true, so will I not bite too suddenly thereat,' lest it be rather a bait for their purses than for our ears; for now we begin to make up our muster-rolls, and look for present pay, and good news commonly draws money from them.
The French do not so well endure the hardness of these wars as do our men, dying almost as fast in Flanders as the Gascons did in Guelderland. Yet they do not want victuals as there they did.
There are three cornets of reiters now cast. We look for the like entertainment in some or all of our new companies. Presently it will be known.
The duke, the Prince with his brother-in-law, and the Prince 'van' Chimay are here, all well.—Antwerp, 1 Jan 1582.
Add. Endd.pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVIII. 1.]
Jan. 1. 2. Cobham to Walsingham.
When I was ready to send this bearer away with my other letters, M. Pinart came to me somewhat late yesternight, showing me how the King had conferred with the Queen Mother concerning the points I had delivered to them of the negotiation M. la Mothe had passed with her Majesty. And as they had 'with respect considered' to make choice of la Mothe, being one known to them to be a person proper to treat in such causes as he had commission, so likewise they found themselves beholden to her Majesty to have so well accepted of him as to let him pass toward Scotland; being sent thither by them for no other purpose than to entertain the ancient amity with the Song of Scots, which they trusted would give no evil satisfaction to her. He assured me how, whereas it had been advertised that a French nobleman was dispatched with the King's letters to embark for Scotland by the way of Zealand, that the king has written no letters but by la Mothe, and lastly by 'Marningvil,' by whom they wrote doubting lest la Mothe's health would not have served to continue the journey.
As for the second point, which concerned the defraying of the expenses of the wars, through which the matter of the marriage was held in 'dispense,' the king made the same answer he was accustomed to deliver, which is that he meant to do as much as her Majesty should perform for the defraying of the charges of his brother's wars.
For the third point, concerning the depredations, M. Pinart said they had received a writing, not signed, written as he thought by one of the clerks of her Majesty's Council, wherein is specified that the Lord Admiral of England was contented to give the same satisfaction for the 'answering' of the robberies which should be committed hereafter by her Majesty's subjects as Duke Joyeuse had caused to be promised in his name.
He certified me further how the king and his mother gave great thanks to her Majesty for the grant she had made them for the use of certain ships. They have at present, as they think, no occasion to employ them, but desire her to continue this good mind towards them as further need shall be offered; in recompense whereof they are ready to 'accomplish' with her in all things which lie in their power.
Lastly, he requested me to advertise thus much, saying that the king had commanded him to write in like manner to M. Mauvissière.—Paris, 1 January 1582.
Add. Endd.pp. [France IX. 1.]
Jan. 1. 3. Cobham to Walsingham.
I shall think myself the more bounden to you if you will accept the carcanet I send by this bearer, knowing it is not so proper for you as I could wish; which I beseech you to excuse, and be assured I shall never become ungrateful for the good deeds you have means to do for me. I trust you will with the beginning of this year procure my release from hence, whereby I shall be completely bounden to you. It seems to me very long to have spent my years so fruitless without receiving any cause of joy. I leave tins to your consideration.
I have today been earnest with M. Pinart for the release of Gower, because he seeks to return to England, to remain a good subject. But the obstinate Papists and worst disposed receive such favour here as I suppose is certified you.—Paris, 1 January 1582.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [France, IX. 2.]
Jan. 2/12. 4. M. de Sweveghem to M. de Treslong.
You will be surprised at my forwardness in writing to you having no personal acquaintance with you; but if I say that the good report given you by all who are zealous for the true service of God and of the king our natural prince is the cause of it, I hope you will take it 'in payment,' and only be grateful to me. For it seems that what happened last Monday at Dixmude through the insolence and cruelty natural to the French, ought to open the eyes of all those who take their side, abandoning that of their lawful and hereditary Sovereign Lord and Count; and from fear that the like or worse happen to them, invite them to turn back halfway, rather than go wholly astray. You know the native goodness and clemency of the king our master, who after the example of the supreme goodness of God receives those who recognise their faults, and forgets indeed all the past illdoing of whosoever has recourse to him. He requires only the obedience due to all good princes, such as his predecessors had. Of this the reconciled provinces give ample testimony. He maintains them in their ancient rights and privileges, not burdening them with any garrisons other than they themselves ask for. If you will be the mediator (moyenneur) in so good a business, you will be the occasion of bringing the desolated country, especially the city of Bruges, to its ancient prosperity, when the reward worthy of the king's greatness, and so signal a service, will not be able to escape you. If you like to enter into communication with me by the way you may judge most secret and secure, you will find in me a response that will satisfy you.—12 January 1583.
Copy. Endd. by L. Cave; Copy of Swevingham's letter to M. Tyrlon, late Governor of Dunkirk; and Copy of M. de la Motte's letter. Fr.pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVIII. 2.]
Jan. 4. 5. Walsingham to Cobham.
By the careful travail and good endeavour of Mr. Bowes, her Majesty's minister in Scotland, the duke's [Lenox] departure out of that realm has in the end been brought to pass. He has taken his journey through this realm, with her Majesty's safe-conduct granted him for that purpose, and has already proceeded so far that I suppose he will be at Dover ready to take his passage, by the 7th inst. He is accompanied all the way from Berwick thither by two gentlemen specially appointed to see that he has no extraordinary conference with any stranger or other, from the time of his first entrance into the realm, until he be shipped to take his passage for France. For other particulars of the present state of things in Scotland, I refer you to the enclosed. We have received secret intelligence that the principal cause of la Mothe's repair thither is to conclude a marriage between the young king and the Duke of Lorraine's daughter, whereof you will do well to seek to discover the certainty there. Mr. Bowes had once brought things to so good a pass, and prepared the king's mind so well to depend upon her Majesty's advice, in all his causes of greatest weight and importance, that if it had pleased her to have been at some charges to continue him in that good devotion towards her, she might have had the disposing of his marriage; the saving of which charges now will breed both charge and peril hereafter.
Her Majesty upon the receipt of your last letters seeing that the French king will not assent to discharge her of the charges of the wars in the Low Countries, seems to be no longer disposed to entertain the matter of the marriage; being pleased that Marchaumont shall accordingly depart to the duke his master with such resolution as she shall take upon the answer now received.
The copy of the Muscovite ambassador's negotiation with the Pope, mentioned in your letter, you will do well to send with your next.—4 January 1582.
Add. Endd.: M. to Sir H. Cobham. ¾ p. [France IX. 3.]
Jan. 5/15. 6. Fremyn to Walsingham.
I wrote last week through Mr. Gilpin. Since then nothing has happened save that the castle of Eyndhoven into which the Italians had retired was surrendered on the third day by composition. They went out with their baggage, swords and daggers. There were 230 Italian soldiers in the castle and some 80 who were made prisoners at the taking of the place, and 40 or 50 slain. They were surprised and made no resistance or offer to fight. They were two companies; their ensigns were brought to his Highness. The place is to be supplied with everything necessary. It is strong and will hold in check Bolduc and Breda, which will do the enemy great harm, by reason of the contributions which they levied on the country districts, amounting to more than 12,000 or 15,000 florins a month. I do not know if our people will be as good managers in this way as the enemy. Arrangements are about being made for the garrison that is to stay there. The castle of Helmont, which holds for the enemy, is strong, and near Eyndhoven. It will not be easy to take and yet is important.
Two days ago his Highness's army passed out of Flanders. This evening the Swiss have passed in order of battle, 11 ensigns, which might number some 2,500 or 3,000 foot, of whom there might be 400 corselets, the rest mere pikes (picques saiches), and about 200 harquebusiers. Of French there were 35 ensigns of foot besides the cavalry, who are some 500. All are quartered in the suburbs of Antwerp, where the army is being got ready to go and besiege some place, if the enemy who has some necessities [sic] does not hinder it. For this purpose they are preparing pioneers, artillery, munitions, which it will be possible to have ready in twelve days, to hold a muster; and a great retrenchment will take place both of foot and horse. There are 300,000 florins being reserved for the general muster. In short, if any nation gets paid, it will be the Swiss and the German reiters, and a favoured few. As for the rest they are trained to endure much necessity. God grant that there may be better order henceforward than in the past.
They are about reckoning with the English, to pay them in paper as they do with the others; also about cashiering (caserye) and retrenching.
The Duke of Montpensier is to depart on Monday for France, as also a lot of the nobility, who will not come back in a hurry, seeing the poor treatment that soldiers get here; they have become miserable slaves without heart or courage, so broken down are they. Nothing is heard on all sides but murmurs and complaints. It is a great displeasure to his Highness to hear these things and to see nothing effected that was promised him here for the maintenance of the war. He has spent of his own property since coming into these countries 700,000 crowns; and if things do not go better than in the past, and the King of France does not declare himself, the end of the war will not be so soon as they think. Besides, several Princes of Germany have promised the Emperor to assist him in this war, inasmuch as the King of Spain is giving the Emperor his daughter, with the Low Countries.
M. de Rambouillet's journey hither was no doubt to see the state of affairs in the country, and the reception and goodwill that his Highness got; but from what I can hear, before the King of France declares himself, he wants to be assured that in the event of his Highness 'failing,' they will submit this State to the King of France in like manner as they have received him, and to the heirs of his Crown. This has been practised for some time; and some choose to say that this has been the reason why things have been let to slide (alter à vau-l'eau), to bring the country into such necessity that they may be perforce compelled to grant the King of France what he desires before he declares himself, with other things to this effect. The Swiss would make a difficulty about coming into Brabant without receiving money; in such wise that his Highness not having money at hand borrowed 5,000 crowns from persons of his suite to give them, promising that he would have them paid when they had passed. It is the wisest nation and best advised, for soldiers, that can be found: for those who think to deceive and abuse them when they want to make use of them, deceive themselves. Also they preserve good discipline among themselves, which keeps them in valour and courage, where other nations not being paid 'bastardise' themselves, without valour nor virtue, doing nothing but act the brigand and thief in the open country; with the curse of God who punishes them with all manner of scourges, as the effect is seen sufficiently in practice hereabouts. God grant there be not more discontents than there are.
His Highness wishes M. de Chamois to come out of Dunkirk, and on account of what has happened there few or no Papists will be allowed to enter the place in garrison, unless under extreme necessity.—Antwerp, 15 January according to the new calendar.
P.S.—M. de Pibrac, his Highness's Chancellor, is daily expected. I am sending this by George Leistre [Lecester].
Add. Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XVIII. 3.]
Jan. 5. 7. Cobham to Walsingham.
I have heretofore written to you how John Grower has been imprisoned at the request of the Jesuits, made to the Bishop of Paris, because they understood he had repaired to me to be the means he might be sent into England to you, whereby through submission he was in hope to obtain the recovery of her Majesty's good grace; so that ever since the month of May, they have detained him in miserable imprisonment, 'without that I could' hitherto by any request made to their Majesties procure his liberty or release, notwithstanding that I have very often solicited the king and the queen in his behalf. After I had received the enclosed from Gower, I did in my last audience very earnestly 'remember' them how he had come from Italy with intention to return to England a good subject to her Majesty, with request to me to receive him into my protection and to send him into England with one of my servants; which I had intended to do, but that as he was going out of my house to fetch some little of his stuff, he was watched and apprehended, at the malicious request of the English Jesuits, and other her Majesty's rebels, by order of the Bishop of Paris. I have alleged the privileges the ambassadors have in like cases, and also this evil notorious precedent (where the Inquisition is not) given by this occasion; considering that Gower had been a rebel, and now was to return a good and penitent subject, and is for that respect only detained and imprisoned, without having offended in any sort his Majesty or the laws of this realm.
In answer thereto I received from M. Pinart how their Majesties had well understood what I had said touching Gower, and having considered thereon they do not think good to release the prisoner until the Bishop of Paris returns, or to have him examined for the further trial of the truth, as I had requested. Nor will they grant to deliver him to me upon caution that he shall appear at the Bishop's return, to answer all matters alleged against him.
Whereon I showed M. Pinart how at this time, when her Majesty made demonstration of most especial friendship, it might seem strange this extraordinary dealing should be used to one of her subjects in this Court. He answered me again that there had been as much unkindness shown to this Crown at Count Montgomery's being in England; which moved me to say that I hoped that had been forgotten with time. Notwithstanding, I had understood, as I remember, how Count Montgomery fled into England as to a 'centuary,' for the safeguard of his life; neither was he afterwards detained or imprisoned by her Majesty when he was disposed to return again into France, a good subject.
So I perceive unless her Majesty find it good to have Gower'a cause further in recommendation, I am out of hope to have him released.—Paris, 5 January 1582.
Add. Endd.pp. [France IX. 5.]
Enclosed in above:
Jan. 4. 8. “Instructions touching the affairs of John Gower, and the means how to procure his expedition and deliverance.”
The Jesuits, albeit they dissemble and pretend the contrary, nevertheless are the formal and opposite adversaries, accusers, parties and authors of the captive's durance and calamity, which to shadow artificially by their practices, 'have' sinisterly incensed the Pope's nuncio, the Bishop of Paris, and other persons of estate and reputation for their support and patronage; yea, further, oppose themselves directly against the captive as judges for defence of the Church's interest.
Their accusation and information against the captive contains principally that he is justly to be imprisoned and punished, for that contrary to his profession and quality—being a priest—he has spoken certain words contained in the interrogatories, (to which he has already answered), and further, maintained in conference sundry propositions and articles all which are repugnant to the Catholic Religion. Against him there are sufficient witnesses, as they suppose, to be produced; which articles are more specially comprised in the interrogatories, which, as the captive is persuaded, his honour has seen and perused.
Presupposing the answer to the interrogatories, the captive adds for more ample instruction that what was in this accusation concluded is most unjustly urged, to his ruin and discredit perpetual, by the Jesuits, the authors of his tribulation, and other their accomplices and scholars, whom they use for witnesses to fortify themselves in their malicious process against the captive. Further no accusation of theirs in this case ought to be important, seeing he did not intrude himself into the Jesuits' College, but came invited by them, in hope to receive money to furnish his necessities; which being sent by his friend, and committed to the Jesuits simply for his use and to be delivered to him, they fraudulently and captiously offered matter of religion to treat upon, denying the payment of the money except he would condescend to their prejudicial conditions, which was utterly beside the intention of him that sent the money, and contrary to conscience and charity, so to abuse a person wholly destitute. Further, whatever then passed in conference, by them urged and exacted, that they now convert into matter of accusation, which they themselves provoked; and furnish their accusation with such testimony as proceeds from those who are their daily scholars, whose consciences also, for their authority which they have over them in confession, they may prescribe and extend to verify their principles and objections without the 'witnesses simple' being thereto warranted.
Further it is to be alleged, that although the conferences had in cases of religion were proved sufficiently by confident witnesses against the captive, yet the king permitting all and singular persons within his dominion to enjoy their liberty of conscience without impeachment, will much less tolerate the molestation of any of her Majesty's subjects so rigorously to be exacted for a scholastical conference, or like words pronounced in discontentation, and that with persons ecclesiastical and scholars, whose ordinary exercise is to treat and dispute; the captive not intending himself to importune any person within his realm, either by preaching, writing, or public exhortation, nor privately disputing with any intention to persuade in any the affairs of the Christian religion, all which, if they were committed, might be interpreted as tending to the transgression of laws, as disturbances of public tranquillity; but rather will dismiss the captive as injured and tormented upon an action containing no matter repugnant to his laws and estate, but only founded on private quarrels of the Jesuits his adversaries, masking under the odious accusation of corrupt religion. And if any objection, to prejudice his Majesty in the case, be made by the adversaries, that the captive has recognised the jurisdiction of the Church, the judges whereof, before the cause debated are sinisterly informed and 'exanimated' by the Jesuits against the captive, and submits himself thereto, together with resignation in writing to the nuntio (the copy of which his lordship has seen), containing his dependance upon the Church, whereby his honour or any other patron is excluded from demanding Liberty for him otherwise than at the hands of ecclesiastical superiors, it is answered:
That such of his countrymen as have ordinary conference with the Jesuits persuaded this surrender after long solicitation, assuring undoubted and present enlargement, upon those acts done which they suggested, and now by the captive are discovered to have no further force than to serve as plausible motions to induce him to renounce his honour's assistance, and consequently employ him to perpetuate his own miseries without hope of release, being destitute of all other aid; etc.
Endd.pp. [France IX. 4.]
Jan. 5. 9. Cobham to Walsingham.
The king departed hence yesterday, to remain at St. Germain's and other places thereabouts; intending so to pass his time till the return of his young Queen from her pilgrimage now made to Notre Dame de Liesse.
They inform me that the Bishop of Lisle, who has been three tunes ambassador at Constantinople, is to be very shortly sent by the king to the great Turk, with greater charges and expenses than has been accustomed. And as they have given me to understand, there is 100,000 crowns assigned to be bestowed in cloths of gold and other matters of value, which are to be presented in the Grand Signior's Court.
There are come extraordinary letters from the Cardinal of Este, written on their Christmas Eve, advising that the great Turk has caused to be declared to the minister of King Philip that he no longer means to continue peace with him; preparing to set forth a great army by sea.
The Pope's nuncio seems to be much startled at the king's sending the Bishop of Lisle. The Queen Mother excuses it under the pretence that M. de Germigny is to be 'revoked' because the king intends to reward him for his services.
The king has, as they say, concluded the marriage between the fourth brother of Duke Joyeuse and the daughter and heir of de Mouy in Picardy, and marries the eldest son of M. de Piennes to Lavalette's youngest sister.
The coming of the Duke of Lorraine is still looked for. He is to be lodged in the Louvre, and a further bruit is delivered in Court that he will take to wife the Duke of Montpensier's widow, sister to the Duke of Guise.
The Pope has caused Cardinal Madruzzi to send his secretaries and confident messengers with letters and practices to all the princes Catholic of Germany, to stir them up to mislike of the intention of the Archbishop of Cologne; of whom the Pope is informed his meaning is to take a wife, and yet to continue in his estate of Bishop and his Electorship, and to introduce Religion within his bishopric and estates, as it has before been notified.
One Alfonso Cicharelli, a singular old, well-learned man, is imprisoned in Rome because he has let it be known that he had in his hands the original Bulla granted by the Emperors 'Aroadio' and 'Honorio' in confirmation of the gift of lands which Constantine had given to the Church; by which Bulla there appear many things to the prejudice of the Pope's prerogative 'in that sort as now he pretends.'
The Ambassador of Spain continues his solicitations to the Pope, to have the Bishop of Seville, who is one of the House of Toledo, and the son of the Duke of Terranova, made Cardinals. And M. de Foix persists in his request, in this king's name, to have the Prince of Condé's brother and the Archbishop of Narbonne, with M. de 'Linencourt,' 'consecrated' cardinals; which is deferred till Ash-Wednesday.
There is a new little quarrel happened between the Pope and the Signiors of Venice, upon this occasion. A gentleman of Bergamo, being a knight of Malta, had lately slain, for a particular quarrel, another gentleman of the same city. So this knight of Malta caused his servants and friends to surprise one of the gates of the city, to the intent he might pass from thence without being apprehended by the Signiory's soldiers, who ordinarily guarded the gates; by which means the knight escaped through that gate out of the town. The Signiors found themselves much displeased with that 'fact,' and because the knight of Malta had in that sort possessed the gate, through which means the town might in like manner have been surprised, and have thereon banished him out of that city and their territories. Upon notice of this, Cardinal Borromeo's suffragan, being resident at Milan, sent to the governors of Bergamo, advertising them that they ought not to impose any such punishment 'unto' a knight of Malta, because he was a person belonging to the Church, and therefore was by the superintendents of the Church to be corrected. Which message being signified to the Signiors, they, finding this 'fact' of the knight of Malta to be offensive to their State, have upon further deliberation confiscated all his lands and goods, and published by proclamation that whosoever shall bereave him of his life is to have 2,000 crowns reward. The suffragan 'understanding of' this decree of the Signiors has sent an excommunication against the governors of Bergamo; and the Pope being made privy to it, is entered into great discontent with the Signiors. But since greater matters are passed over, it is likely this will be pacified without further inconvenience.—Paris, 5 January 1582.
Add. Endd.p. [France IX. 6.]
Jan. 5. 10. Cobham to Walsingham.
I have been requested by Lord Hamilton to 'address' his servant Mr. Coningham to you, wherefore I have committed him to be conducted by your servant Mr. Doyle, this present bearer, as to a 'confident' gentleman, 'affecting,' as I understand, her Majesty's service.
It seems, by the words Lord Hamilton sends me, that he is constantly bent to obey her Majesty, and 'affected' to direct the course of his fortune according to her directions, offering by all manner of means to give assurance thereof, as I perceive his servant has in charge to deliver on his behalf. And for that he supposes his friends in Scotland deal more slackly towards the king in his causes than he 'mistrusted,' as also because those here who are of the contrary faction 'deliver forth' how Captain 'Stuard' (called the Earl of Arran) has been set at liberty, he found it convenient to send this confident servant that he might go to 'solicit' his affairs in Scotland, directing his sundry letters to the lords. But yet he is commanded to proceed forward, according to what he shall find from you that the Queen may like. They tell me that Lord Hamilton doubts lest Lord Claud's strange dealings with the Earl of Angus have given offence both in England, and to his friends in Scotland, and wherefore he has taken same unkindness with Lord Claud; which particular, with all other 'causes' concerning Lord Hamilton, I am sure Mr. Coningham will enlarge to you.
It is advertised me that Creighton the Scottish Jesuit, resident at Lyons, was some months ago sent into Scotland, when he spoke with the king in the presence of the Duke of Lenox. The young king promised him to return to the Pope's devotion and obedience; whereon the practice was agreed on that the chief of the lords of the Religion should be first apprehended, and four or five of the best learned ministers, and so consequently there should be sent over from these parts three Scottish, three Italian, three French, and three English Jesuits, who should offer disputation, and their bodies to be imprisoned and burnt upon occasion [sic] and then suppress religion by courting the Pope's idolatry. For the conducting of this enterprise 25,000 crowns were sent to a banker of Paris, the dispensing of which money was committed to Mr. Archibald Hamilton the Jesuit.
Lady 'Fanhurst' has brought to the Scottish king sundry letters from d'Aubigny, delivering them cunningly; as at one time the king standing in his chamber by the fireside, in toying with her, drew privily a letter which she held in her left hand, having on her gloves, the lords present not perceiving the manner thereof. And as the king was going down from his lodgings to Lord Huntley's chamber, she gave him a letter from d'Aubigny.
The Duke of Guise understanding the Queen had licensed la Mothe-Fénelon to pass into Scotland, 'showed' to rejoice greatly thereat. He gives out that it 'should be' said that the Earls of Gowrie, Huntley, 'Crayford,' and 'Clyncarne' are seeking to set Captain James Stewart at liberty, and that they in Scotland had 'concluded' in Court that d'Aubigny might [qy not] repair within six miles of the king's Court with all his friends. The Bishop of Ross adds that Angus was forbidden to approach nearer than fifteen miles of the Court; and that d'Aubigny was licensed to stay for 5 years in the enjoyment of his livings, but not to repair within 10 miles.
'Mon Brunyos' says he had letters from Scotland importing that d'Aubigny is returning to France to deal in the Scottish king's affairs, and to get the old company of men of arms which the Earl of Arran 'sometimes' had in this Court.
The Bishop of Glasgow has sent Martin the groom of his chambers in post towards the sea-side, to 'Mannyngvyld,' who lately was not yet embarked, as they 'inform.' The bishop 'pretends' to send his nephew Fentrey to the Duke of Brabant under the pretence of treating with his Highness about some things belonging to the Scottish Queen's dowry; but I hear his chief negotiations will be to dispose him to intreat with her Majesty for d'Aubigny, and to sound Monsieur what disposition and inclination he is now of concerning the Scottish queen and the king her son. This Fentrey is known to the most part of all the late English 'travailers.' He is privy to all the Spanish practices, and her Majesty's fugitives' dispositions. I refer it to you to think how much it might prevail if he were well confessed and shroven under 'benedicite' in Flanders or elsewhere. This much concerning Scottish causes.
I have not received any of your letters since Thomas Walsingham's dispatch.—Paris, 5 January 1582.
Holograph. Endd. 4 pp. [France IX. 7.]
Jan. 5. 11. J. Lobetius to Walsingham.
I pray God to give you a good and happy New Year, granting you the accomplishment of your holy desires; so be it.
I wrote to you last on Nov. 19 by Mr. Zolcher. The present will be chiefly to beg you to consider by what means it might be possible to invite the King of Navarre, the Prince of Condé, and the Churches of France to satisfy poor Mr. Sturmius; whether to have M. du Plessis spoken to, or that your Queen or some great lords at your Court should kindly write, with good effect, to the king and the prince. The good old man is obliged to you for much, as indeed he confesses 'loud and clear'; but the obligation would be much increased if you could help him herein. I assure you that his wretchedness is great, and increases daily to a woeful point. His creditors press him marvellously, and heavy interest assails him. He has pledged almost everything to them, even to his shirt; and it is to be feared that the worthy man cannot long avoid total ruin of his goods and perhaps imprisonment of his body if steps are not very soon taken. The ingratitude and carelessness of his debtors are the cause of it. They have let him run, solicit, cry, for twenty whole years without paying him one single penny. The King of Navarre does not see to it, the Prince of Condé says nothing, the reformed Churches of France seem not to care about it. In short, this venerable old man is deserted by all at the time when he most needs comfort and aid, notwithstanding that his demand is just and clear [? liquide] and that the money he asks for has been several times adjudged [? décrété], and that what he has lent has been employed for the affairs of the Religion; nay, employed in such sort that without it those affairs would often have been delayed or put back. And now, for all liberality, and honest recompence, after making him languish for 20 years, nourishing him on a hope that had starved him, they let him fall into calamity and ruin. I should much like to know what his debtors, that is the King of Navarre and the Prince of Condé, are thinking, and with what conscience they desert such a personage, who has deserved so much, and who will be regretted by every one.
I am compelled to discourse this to you, being urged by a just grief, and foreseeing the evil which may very soon come upon this good man if no remedy be found. I beg you to think of it, and see how one can act therein to move those dobtors more efficaciously than hitherto to do their duty in this matter as soon as possible; nam periculum est in mora.
You will have heard that the Archbishop of Cologne wants to marry a Countess of Mansfeldt, and has withdrawn from his obedience to the Pope, having preachings in the places under his jurisdiction. He perseveres in his designs; those of Cologne are opposed to them. However, there is a division among them, as also in the Great Chapter. I do not know what the issue of it will be, but a war may very well follow; for they say some great people will meddle in it. They send word from Italy that the Pope has sent to the Emperor and some other princes of these countries to oppose the archbishop's design. If bishops take up the habit of marrying, the Pope will get no great good thereby.
We have no further news of the Turk's agreement with the Sophy.
The Poles have held a Diet at Warsaw. Their king was trying to undertake a war against the King of Swedes on account of some post in Livonia; but the Poles would not listen to it—they advised rather to settle the difference by mutual agreement (à l'amiable). Nor have they promised to elect a successor to the king, wishing to keep the right of election in their own hands.
On the 15th inst. they will begin to treat in Switzerland of an agreement between the Duke of Savoy, the Bernese, and the Genevese. Time will enlighten us as to the result; the negotiation will not pass without difficulties, and some are of opinion that nothing will be done, and that it will come to taking arms again. Others have better hopes.
Duke Casimir still stays in his house, but some movement may very likely be made; opportunities do wonders.—Strasburg, 5 January 1583.
P.S. If Zolcher is still there, he may be told that his wife is well.
Add. Endd. Fr.pp. [Germany II. 54.]