Elizabeth: November 1584, 21-30

Pages 162-174

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 19, August 1584-August 1585. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1916.

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November 1584, 21–30

Nov. 21. Davison to Walsingham.
Having variable weather at sea, it was Wednesday afternoon ere we arrived here, where I found Count Maurice and some few of the Council of State setting forward preparations for the relief of Antwerp and clearing of the river, newly closed up by the enemy with “platts” anchored some distance from each other and linked together with cables. But the succour from hence “training in length,” those of Antwerp determined mean-while to do what they could; and having charged four or five old vessels with pitch, faggots, etc., which they meant to fire and let fall with the ebb, “ran down” on Monday night with some galleys and other ships, to execute their purpose; and finding the enemy's platts fewer and weaker than they looked for, they boarded them, cut the cables, slew or forced overboard most of the resisters, and brought away three of the hoys, with forty or fifty prisoners, reserving their old ships for a greater necessity. Since then the river has been open and above 300 sail have passed up and down.
This morning Admiral Treslong departed for Flushing, with such ships as were ready here, to meet the rest of the fleet on the way from Barrow, Ziericksee and other places, to the number of forty or fifty sail, well appointed and manned, proposing to attempt somewhat upon the enemy's forts which most oppose the passage, or else to cut the ditches between Lillo and Stabroeck, where the Prince of Parma lies with his chief force, to try to open the passage through the land and cut the enemy from relieving their forts at Oerdam and other places betwixt Lillo and Osterweel; they of Antwerp being resolved to assail them at the same time, that by amusing him in divers places at once, they may effect one purpose or the other.
They have had a great loss at Antwerp last week in M. de Teligny, who coming thence in a very small vessel with four or five men was assailed by the enemy, shot through the body and carried prisoner to Ghent; being, for aught we hear, yet alive and in hope of recovery.
Of the departure of the commissioners from hence into France I hear no certainty, but shall learn more in Holland, whither I take my journey to-morrow.—Middelburg, 21 November, 1584.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XXIII. 59.]
Draft of the same, much corrected.
Endd. 1 p. [Ibid, XXIII. 59a.]
Nov. 21./Dec. 1. Nicolas De Ponte, Duke Of Venice to The Queen.
As we have always desired that the removal of the impositions might be brought to a good conclusion, both from affection to your Majesty and for the benefit of our subjects, so we are not unmindful of the courtesy shown to our three ships, and desire to show the same to the English merchants. The imposition was demanded in money by our governor of Zante, without fresh order from us, in place of the caution we had appointed, but we think the deferring of the execution of our good intent should be imputed chiefly to fate, for shortly after our decree in this matter, we learned that your Majesty had made a decree to exclude our merchants from that trade, which led us to suspect your meaning therein.
But now, by your last letters of 20 April being assured that our subjects shall not be burdened more than they were before your reign and that the decree for the concession granted to a few English merchants shall not hinder ours at all if the imposition be taken off by us and your Majesty satisfied as you desire, the doubt which we at first conceived is wholly taken away. And to prove our sincerity, we have ordered our governors —as soon as they are informed of the removal of that imposition in your kingdom—to discharge your subjects from all molestation in regard to it, and also to return to them what they had paid on such merchandise as they can prove they brought to Zante or bought there before they had notice of our decree.
Thus we hope that your kind treatment of our subjects will daily increase, as you may be assured ours will also towards yours, so that there may ever continue that mutual goodwill which to our great satisfaction we now see on both sides.—Our ducal palace.—1 December, 1584.
Countersigned, Celio, chief secretary.
Copy. Endd. Italian. 2⅓ pp. [Venice I. 14.]
English translation of the above.
2 pp. [Ibid. I. 15.]
Nov. 21./Dec. 1. Order Of The Council Of The Pregadi.
Directing the writing of letters to the Governors of Zante, Candia etc. for the removal of the imposition and repayments to the English merchants, under the conditions stated in the Duke's letter to the Queen, with further directions relating to the prevention of fraud on the part of Venetian subjects by avoiding payment of duty.—1 December.
Signed by Fabritius Vignaves, the Duke's notary.
Copy. Endd. Italian. 1½ pp. [Ibid. I. 16.]
Another copy of the same.
2 pp. [Ibid. I. 17.]
English translation of the above.
pp. [Ibid. I. 18.]
Nov. 22. Stafford to Walsingham.
After waiting from day to day for the King's answer, he yesterday sent Pinard to tell me that he could not yet give it me, as he was daily expecting the deputies from the States, and that he had sent to his ambassador in England to make the same excuse to her Majesty; for he desires to see “what point he shall be at with them, and what end that treaty will have,” before he can resolve what to do.
I answered that I thought her Majesty would take this answer but badly at my hands, and would conceive it was some slackness in me (knowing the King so wise) rather than “his lack of consideration of the necessity of a thing of so great importance”; that if he could not resolve how to help them, he might satisfy her Majesty whether he meant to help them or no; for even if they were foolish and did not deserve it for their own sake, yet the necessity of his own state and the impeachment of the King of Spain's greatness should make him give it. I desired Pinard therefore to move him again, that I might not send away so “sleeveless” an answer, which might put her Majesty in doubt of the King's good meaning. He answered that she need not make any doubt of that, as he had written to his ambassador to assure her of it; that it was of no use to go to the King again, as he was fully resolved to hear the deputies first, after which he would either go forward with them to her Majesty's liking, or else, upon breach of that, take her advice in some other good way.
This is all the answer I could get from him, which I am ashamed to send you, but hope her Majesty “will not think it is any fault in me.
Men here generally hope that if the deputies will be reasonable in their offers, the King will accept them. If he had as much mettle in him as everybody (except the pensioners of Spain) openly desires, I could hope some good, for I never saw anything so general as the mislike of the King of Spain's greatness here; but I am still of my old opinion that unless he has full sovereignty the King will do nothing for the Low Countries, even if, in that case, he would, which I would not swear for.
Yet truly he has some great matter in his head, and stands in fear of Spain both abroad and at home in two ways. First by means of the house of Guise, whom in all appearance he hates extremely, and in truth I see it to be very likely and most part of both religions here “think it irreconcileable,” as it may be unless by his cold slackness they make themselves so strong, ere he is aware of it, that for fear, he must do what they would have him.
The other “side,” he suspects Montmorency to have intelligence with Spain through the Duke of Savoy, and “for fear of any further fire bursting out,” he makes much of the King of Navarre's folks here, and has sent Poigni of Rambouillet to him with commission to appease all things, and commandment to everybody to believe the King of Navarre as himself.
I think if last night's news had come before Poigni's despatch, the King of Navarre would not have had so large a commission, for it was greatly feared that Montmorency, having taken Lodève (which the Bishop, by old Joyeuse's instigation, had made revolt against him) would have executed all in it; but yesternight news came that the town was taken but nobody put to death, all being reserved by him to the King's pleasure, as Pinard told me; but from others I hear he has done great execution, which I should be sorry for, as it would bring the King into great suspicion.
The King uses Laval and Plessis very familiarly and they hope to obtain most of their demands. I hear for a certainty that the King of Navarre is greatly followed by them of both religions, and that his court is very great.
I send you two new edicts, by which you may see the King is in fear of great persons and seeks the goodwill of the people, “or else he would never have called those edicts and offices in.”
He makes very much of the Cardinal of Bourbon, new come to the Court, and most think it is to draw him out of the hands of the Guises, “of whom he was assotted, and that had made him a sot to serve their turns withal,” but some deeper seers fear it is for a worse intent and may turn to the prejudice of the King of Navarre.
Tassis, who has never been to me since Mendoza passed this way into Spain, came yesterday under colour of taking leave, but I saw his drift was to see if he could move me, that as at my coming hither he had paid me the usual compliments, so I should now do the same to Mendoza, that so there might be maintained that “accustomed frequentation” between ambassadors whose masters are good friends; desiring, as he said, “to have so necessary a friendship to continue between his master and my mistress, whom in all respects he would honour and serve in all places”; desiring me to assure her Majesty of it and to remind her of the need of friendship with Spain, which he thought by good means might be very well continued. I answered that I would not fail to make known his good will to the Queen, who I knew would be very sorry to hear that he had left this place to one whom she had no cause to like of; that she should also be acquainted with his desire to maintain amity between her and his master; and as the breach of it never came by her, I was sure that if she found cause to think that his master did not wish it broken, she would not give cause to do so, but that he knew his minister there had taken such things in hand as made her suspect some evil meaning in the master; that if the King had not countenanced the actor, she might have thought it done against the master's will, but his good usage in Spain, and the rejection there of him she had sent to declare the cause of his dismissal, had imprinted a worse opinion in her Majesty than I thought she could have been brought to by any other means.
As for the point of visiting Mendoza, “a man plunged by all appearances in an intent to do nothing that may be acceptable to her Majesty, and who had departed from her with so great a cause of mislike, I durst not do it without commandment from her, nor durst be so bold as to ask her pleasure,” though if any other had been in the place I would have used all compliments at his coming and all courtesies during his abode.
He replied, first excusing his master's seeking any cause of mislike, and would have laid the faults upon us, and have excused Mendoza “with assurance of his protestations” that he had never attempted such things as were laid against him; but I believe that just as much as I believe any good meaning in the actions both of the master and the man.
Yet for my duty's sake I must write what they say, though I believe it not, and also to know her Majesty's pleasure whether she like my dealing with Mendoza or would wish me to visit him.—Paris, 22 November, late, 1584.
Postscript, in his own hand.—I beseech you, as soon as the bearer has despatched his business, to send him to me again, “for, as I cannot well away with familiarity of near friends,” still worse can I a change of secretary, of whom I have now (being three quarters lame of one arm) more need than before.
Add. Endd.pp. [France XII. 118.]
Nov. 23./Dec. 3. Instructions for the Deputies of the States-General of the United Provinces for what they have to treat with the Most Christian King, in the the name of, and by virtue of the commissions and authorisations given them respectively by the said States-General, and the several provinces.
Endd. Fr. 11 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XXIII. 60.]
Another copy of the same.
Endd. Fr. 11¼ pp. [Ibid. XXIII. 61.]
Nov. 23./Dec. 3. Articles of the Treaty with the French King.
Endd. by Burghley, “December, 1584. By the deputies of the States of the Low Countries, sent into France.” Fr. 6 pp. [Ibid. XXIII. 62.]
The Articles, as presented to the King on Feb. 5–15, are printed in Bor, bk. XIX, f. 55 (2). These are numbered differently and have very many variations.
Nov. 24./Dec. 4. Mauvissière to Walsingham.
There often arise occasions when I must trouble you, but in all things I have followed my master's orders, to maintain peace and friendship with the Queen your mistress. I know that the Queen of Scots and her affairs have brought me into great suspicion here, but I have tried rather to mend what others have marred than to imitate them. I pray you to tell her Majesty that M. Nau has brought me a letter from his mistress, urgently requiring me to assist him in the commission with which she has charged him to the Queen, and to mediate in all things, in the name of my master, in order to be the third in the perfect amity which the Queen of Scots desires between the Queen your mistress and herself and the King her son, for the good, honour, satisfaction and peace of all.
But seeing that the Queen of Scots and her actions or misfortunes have been so suspected by her Majesty that she has become utterly distrustful both of her and of me, I have refrained as much as possible from importuning her, and in regard to what M. Nau wishes, I beg you to sound her whether it will be agreeable to her for me to speak to her on these matters, for I am determined not to vex her, or ever to give her occasion to complain of me. And the Queen of Scots declares that she wishes to follow the same course, which I have always recommended to her as the safest and surest.—London, 4 December, 1584.
Add. Endd. Fr.pp. [France XII. 119.]
Nov. 24. Gilpin to Walsingham.
This bearer is sent over by William Chapman to show you his invention and experiment, who “writeth himself so much as I need the less to be troublesome,” and Capt. Martin, who also comes over, “hath had so large conference thereof” that I need only refer you to the one and the other.
Count Maurice is still here, but the States remain at Delft, whither Mr. Davison is departed.
“The enterprise upon the enemy's sconces is hastened forward and by the next I think somewhat will be exploited,” whereof I will not fail to advertise you.—Middelburg, 24 November, 1584.
Add. Endd. ½ p. [Holl. and Fl. XXIII. 63.]
Nov. 24. Harborne to Walsingham.
I hope I have accomplished the “effect” of your last, received by this bearer, my friend Mr. Nicholas Saunders, to your satisfaction and his content, to whose report I refer myself.
I send enclosed a copy of my former letters under cipher, praying you to pardon rough-hewed discourses, as near to truth as we may credit blind papists, ceremonious Greeks, stiff-necked Jews, perfect Atheists and false-hearted Turks; for others there be not here. And as without “conformity of company” life is miserable, I crave licence (my time expiring next year) to return to England, happy in receiving Christ's gospel, maintained by her Majesty, the chief member of His church on earth.
The continuance of the intercourse with these would evidently tend to the advancement of our commonwealth, if those her subjects to whom is granted a like privilege in Venice contented themselves in their limits, and did not seek “to circumvent ours here by fraud of forsworn crafty Greeks, colouring their commodities which they daily bring in and sell at much under prices, for so much as that Signoria consumeth very little or no part thereof, whereupon they fall here in vile estimation, the said Company reaping only a benefit of that carried into their native country”; so that unless they be restrained, or united with these, confusion will grow and greater harm to both with the pirates of Barbary, who often do not yield obedience to the Grand Signor's safe-conducts, as they do in all other places of his dominions, but “make fish all that cometh in their net”; nor is half of it recovered or the transgressors punished, for that the chief in office there reap underhand their part of that prey. Thus, unless the discommodities from our unlawful competitors are remedied, and the safety of her Majesty's subjects and goods secured in their passage, it were better to “give end” to the trade in the Levant Seas, as our contraries, the French and Venetians desire, than to run so great a hazard for small or no profit. And though some may require my continuance here, I must again earnestly crave that I may return next year; neither would this hinder anything here if the title of agent be given to the secretary until the coming of another ambassador (as the French do); for he having the language and being accompanied by some one of more years, is and shall be so well instructed how to govern himself that no detriment will grow, another present will be saved and our charges here much diminished, “according to that inferior degree.”—Rapamet, 24 November, 1584.
Add. Endd.pp. [Turkey I. 26.]
Nov. 25. Christopher Hoddesdon to Walsingham.
Being newly come into these parts, I know nothing worthy the writing, but from my duty to you, am emboldened as follows.
1. The general voice and affection of the common people wherever I come, with hope that my coming will benefit the State, through the gracious countenance of her Majesty, whose subjects they desire to be, before any prince in the world.
2. The mutability of the governors or magistrates, who draw themselves into factions of the French, so much to the dislike of some of the wisest here, that they have withdrawn from their councils of their own accord and not by compulsion, or any way deserving the same, as has been advertised.
For though the letters of credit brought by Mr. “Pruneus “from the French King were more compendious than of sufficient ground to build upon, yet through the capacity of the bringers, they have taken such effect that the commissioners are appointed, who, being more than needful and divers of them fallen sick, the rest make more haste “than the determination of their commissions will permit.”
God's enemies have gathered themselves together in Germany at “Raques” [i.e. Prague] and mean to make the Duke of Bavaria (brother of the new Bishop of Cologne) their general. “God send unto him the success of Holofernes.”
I left Mr. Davison at Middelburg, who finding “Grave Morrice and Mr. Brewnings” [Brunynck] there, hoped the rest of the States would assemble there, but coming hither and finding them settled here, I have informed him of it. Mr. Swartz has been to inquire for him, as it seems the late Bishop of Cologne (resident within three miles of this place) much desires his coming.
Don Diego de Botelho has visited me and means shortly to come into England, “to confer for his master's most safety,” as I suppose. I am here far from the wars, and hear of no exploits on either side, saving the late small success at Antwerp. Touching my own affairs, I have had audience and hope to end them, if not altogether as I would, yet somewhat to my contentment, by the goodwill of friends.
Mr. Fernando “Poynes,” coming to these parts, was cast away on the Tessell, with all who were in the ship, one only excepted.—The Hague, 25 November, 1584, “stila Anglica.”
Add. Endd.pp. [Holl. and Fl. XXIII. 64.]
Nov. 28. Stafford to Walsingham.
Though I think you are already advertised by M. de la Fontaine of what is contained in the enclosed letter, sent to a friend of mine here to be shown to me, yet, for fear M. de la Fontaine's letters have not come to his hands I send it you. The same friend showed me others written out of Languedoc, where there seems to be greater jealousy of Montmorency than ever. They affirm that he means to put most of the places he now has into the King of Spain's hands, or at least into the Duke of Savoy's, and say for a certainty that the marriage is concluded between Guise's son and Montmorency's daughter and that the only stay is that old Madame “Conestable” will have Montmorency's son also to marry Guise's daughter. The same man has letters out of Picardy that Marshal Retz greatly favours, underhand, the actions of the Duke of Guise, whatsoever show he makes to the contrary, and that it is by a secret command from the Queen Mother.
These news came from ministers and are written to ministers, who, as you know, continually advertise one another, but I do not find any who much believe them, and it is certain that M. de Joyeuse held quite contrary language to Madame Bacqueville and others of the Religion when he was at Rouen. Also Plessis and Chassincourt, though they have no great trust in Montmorency's steadfastness, can hardly believe these things, because of the King's mislike of the Duke of Guise, and the Queen Mother's also, which, in appearance, everybody sees. But as ministers have been often bitten, they are more mistrustful than others, and by careful looking into things, are better advertised and judge better of them than others do. Therefore I send you both their advertisements and others' judgments on them, that you may know both.
Lord Seton went from Rouen ten days ago towards Calais, and some think, from thence into Flanders, and so to steal into Scotland. He was so bare, and two poor English priests that were there, that they tried to borrow a hundred crowns for him, but it could not be got, and he was fain, I think, to steal away.—Paris, 28 November, 1584.
Add. Endd. 2 pp. [France XII. 120.]
Enclosing :
M. Da La Tour to —.
I hear that when M. de Joyeuse was at a banquet at (chez) the Pellicars, where was Madame de [blank], he drew her apart and told her that the King found it very strange that the King of Navarre should make leagues in this realm, and, in short, declared to her all M. de Guitry's negotiation, which shows that the last declaration is rather against us than against the Duke of Guise. M. du Plessis and Chassincourt should know this, for it is plain they wish to make trouble for us, and also that M. de Joyeuse means to establish himself in this province. It shows to what end the parlement made the interdiction, and what further we have to expect. It will be well to warn M. de Guitry to be on his guard.
Some letters of the Bishop of Ross have been intercepted, in which he tells a friend that there is an excellent Jesuit at l'lslebourg [qy. Edinburgh], who will shortly be followed by a dozen comrades. You had better ask the English ambassador for a word, and tell him that the same letter says there is some delay in Scotland of the army of the pope, proceeding from the side of England. You see how Satan presses on his design, but I do not despair. We must watch and pray.—29 November, 1584.
Endd. by Stafford, “Copy of a letter from M. de la Tour of Rouen, sent to the minister here to be showed me.” Fr. 1 p. [France XII. 120a.]
Nov. 28. Stafford to Burghley.
A copy of his letter to Walsingham, above, with a few words added at the end.—Paris, 28 November, 1584.
Add. Endd. by Burghley. 2 pp. [Ibid. XII. 121.]
Nov. 29./Dec. 9. Madame De La Noue to Geoffrey Le Brumen.
You will have heard before I did of the wounding and imprisonment of my son, de Teligny. We know nothing but the fact and with so much uncertainty that some doubt of his life. You may imagine what increase of affliction this is to our house. Immediately I had the news, I sent a despatch to the States in general, and privately to certain of them, and as it is difficult to get these to them safely, I send you a duplicate, which you will address as is best, either to M. de Hautain, governor of Flushing, or to Antwerp to M. Massiz, minister, dwelling near the Cordeliers, to give it to Semelier.
See M. “Vudsinguam,” and greet him humbly on my behalf. I am sure he will feel this our affliction as he did the first. I desire entirely to govern myself by his advice. Tell me what he says to you about it.
Mendoza, who is here, has letters from the Prince of Parma that they will send the son with the father. That will be some convenience. If my wishes could come true, you would be with my son to take care of him, but alas that cannot be, and I fear he may be badly treated by the surgeons.—Paris, 9 December, 1584. Signed Marie de Lure.
Postscript.—You will open the packet and address my letters as you see best. Our commission for Normandy will, I hope, soon be put into effect. Tell me about M. de Segur, and if he is still in England, greet him from me.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [France XII. 122.]
[Sent by Stafford with his letter of Dec. 8.]
Nov. 30. Gilpin to Walsingham.
Mr. Davison being departed for Holland, and the news from Antwerp coming here the sooner, I presume to write what I have heard.
Count Maurice is still here; the Council of State not yet come but sent for. The General States at Delft busy about the despatch of the commissioners to France, but cannot agree concerning the instructions, every one standing upon their privileges, especially the Holland towns and Guelderland.
Those of this island have written very absolutely, requiring that without longer delay something may be resolved, and matters touching the defence of the country more hotly forwarded; else would ensue the loss of one place after another, bringing disunion and total ruin.
The enterprise is deferred until the “floote” of Antwerp is ready, which it is feared, will be hard to govern in the river, “being so great, and the more subject to the sands and flats. A credible man told me, those that have the handling of the money contributed by the provinces (to wit, the States and they by them appointed) dare not adventure to do any exploit, fearing if it succeeded not well, and the men to be overthrown, then would each province cry out for spending the money and loss of them they used in garrisons.” He believed matters would not be well directed without some absolute authority, or that each province and chief town should take upon them the collection and disbursement of their own money, maintaining their own soldiers, and in time of any service or enterprise, to do it upon warning from the chief authority. By this means, murmurings would cease, and the people be satisfied and yield more willingly to such contributions as need might require; which course the towns of Holland and Zeeland used in their former wars, and it is believed, will do again, if the French agreement fails.
Rumour runs that the Prince of Parma is coming with his chief strength to 'Hoebucke' [Hoboken], a village two English miles from Antwerp, bringing ordnance and all other things, as if he intended a forcible siege to some place. This will cut off the passage between Antwerp, Brussels and Mechlin, but those places are said to be well guarded and provided with all necessaries.
The passage of the river remains very dangerous, “not sparing powder nor shot though never so small a boat pass,” so that trade is greatly decayed, and few travellers except those forced by their business to “adventure.”—Middelburg, 30 November, 1584.
Add. Endd.pp. [Holl. and Fl. XXIII. 65.]
Nov. A Project of Captain Pigott.
Ostend might, from its situation, be made very strong, the haven enlarged, and the enemy greatly annoyed both by sea and land. As her Majesty has entered into the affairs of Holland, it is very important to hold the town, for landing men or for annoying either the King of Spain's army or the French.
It “annoys” the passage between England and Zeeland so much that, if the enemy had it, it would be very prejudicial to her Majesty, and they would so fortify it that it would be a greater annoyance to us than Dunkirk or any other haven town held by the King. It would assist his shipping so much that it would soon put her Majesty to far greater charge by sea than the holding of it costs, whereas the holding must force the enemy to excessive charges for the defence of those parts, nor can they do any exploit, for England or elsewhere, without being discovered.
If the sconce called Neuen Damme, now held by the enemy, could be taken, it would “take away the river,” so that nothing could pass for (sic) Dunkirk, Nieuport or other towns thereabouts, to Bruges, Sluys and those parts and they must bring all by land at great charge. It would so annoy the country that all the towns within eight or ten leagues must give contribution, thus assisting the garrison and reducing the cost of it, and also so annoy Bruges and other towns that they must either compound with her Majesty, or the burghers must abandon them.
“The sconce is to be made so available, that there must be great forces brought before it, and yet the commander of the place should make his composition at his pleasure; so as it should go very hard but that once in three months we should be able to recover it again or else to ensconce some other place which should annoy the enemy as much.”
Endd. “November, 1584. A project of Captain Pigott's, touching the taking in of a sconce of the enemy's called Neuen Damme.” Also, “A writing of Captain Pigott, and delivered by Michael Boyle.” 2 pp. [Ibid. XXIII. 66.]
[Nov. ?] Notes About Strasburg.
The bishopric of Strasburg, besides the bishop, has twenty-four canons, all recruited from the families of princes, counts and barons, and all compelled to prove their descent through thirty-two generations. Those of them who can show that they are more than twenty years of age and have taken the orders of sub-deacon are named capitulars, and as all the churches in the city are reformed, they have no duties save that of meeting in the college senate every Saturday, and after doing this thirteen times in the year, they are held to have fulfilled their task. It generally happens that those who are canons of Cologne are canons here also, as the proof of descent required is nearly the same in both places.
After the Elector of Cologne had been excommunicated by the Pope and the sentence had been handed to the college there by the Bishop of Vercelli, with a recommendation that they should elect another Archbishop, the said Bishop summoned all the canons of these parts, except the Bishop of Bremen and the Count of Waldeck, to purge themselves of heresy; and when these said he was not competent to try them, he solemnly excommunicated them and deprived them of all dignities and benefices depending on him. But only those of the reformed [i.e. Calvinist] religion were thus outraged; those of the Confession of Augsburg were passed over, but were so terrified that they would join neither side and so were excluded, together with the reformers, from the fictitious election, which was subsequently made by the papal canons. The papal party now thought they had triumphed at Cologne, and as the time was approaching when the canons of Strasburg generally assemble and come into residence (from 9 kal. May to 8 kal. August) they hastened to use their superior numbers to shut out the evangelicals from the college and its rents, and to intrude a new Dean (a dignity held by the Elector of Cologne for more than ten years) in the person of the Duke of Saxe Lauenburg, younger brother of the Archbishop of Bremen. The evangelical canons vainly held out for more than twenty weeks. Then, seeing that they could get nothing, even by the intercession of the neighbouring Palatine princes, to wit John Casimir, Richard and John Zweibrücken, the sons of Charles Margrave of Baden, and the Senate of Strasburg, and that the room in which they were accustomed to hold the Senate was shut against them, they summoned the papal party to meet them; and as they did not come, and no Tormentor (as they call him who is wont to convoke the collegiate body) appeared, on August 15, in the presence of notaries and witnesses, they broke open the door of the room and fitted fresh locks thereto. The papal party, hearing of it took away the new padlocks and fitted others; the evangelicals, in turn, broke these and substituted their own. Then the papists gave way and the evangelicals thus obtained the college court-room, a large house in the middle of the city, protected by many rights and privileges. On the following 18 August they entered the court house, and after summoning both the treasurers (quæstores), decided not to withdraw until the controversy should be settled. The papal party, with a crowd of clergy, councillors and notaries, demanded entrance, but, being denied, withdrew. The evangelicals, in the presence of notaries and both treasurers, got a smith to unlock the iron room in the fore-part of the chief temple, but failed to find there a unicorn's horn (so long that a man of medium height could hardly touch the top of it) and some other things regarded as treasures. On the 19th the papal party complained to the city Council, accusing the evangelicals of having made away with the treasure, although they afterwards confessed, by words and writing, that they had done so themselves.
The evangelicals held the court-house until the following Monday, when the city Council, with many protestations against the diminishing of its privileges, demanded that according to ancient custom, it should be thrown open to all and that twenty guards should be admitted to protect it, at the expense of the college. The evangelicals protested, but the Council unlocked the house and left a guard in it, whereupon the papal party returned them their thanks. The evangelicals declared that the wages of the guard ought to be paid not by them but by their adversaries, as being the cause of its presence there. Afterwards, on the solicitation of the papal party, the Council demanded that the evangelicals should leave the court-house, but they adduced reasons for not doing so, and have so far remained there.
Meanwhile the Bishop, and at his instigation the Emperor, have written to the Council, demanding that the evangelicals, as disturbers of the public peace, be ejected therefrom, but the Council has declined to be the executor of a papal excommunication, and will find no difficulty in holding to this position.
On October 16, the Bishop, on the ground of reports that the evangelicals were uttering threats, asked the Council whether it would not be wise to demand assurances for their good behaviour, and if they refused, to punish them severely. But the evangelicals hearing of it, he suffered a repulse, and on writing a sharp answer to the Council on Nov. 12, got a no less sharp reply. Lastly, when the Council learned that the Bishop and papal canons had enticed away certain persons from their friendship and alliance, it sent to the Swiss to enter into a more strict treaty with them.
There are four persons to whose charge this whole matter must be laid :—George von Sein, Count of Wittgenstein, provost of Cologne, nearly 60 years of age; Hermann Adolf, Count of Solms; John, Baron of Winnenberg and Ernest, Count of Mans-feld. The Bishop, who is of the family of the Counts of Manderscheidt, from his youth up embraced pure doctrine openly, but now, led by ambition, has passed over to the Babylonian camp. So much for the state of the canons of Strasburg.
Endd. Latin. 2½ pp. [Germany, States, III. 56.]