Elizabeth: May 1585, 11-15

Pages 473-476

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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May 1585, 11–15

May 11/21. The Elector Truchsess to Davison.
He thought to have been this day at Honslerdyck, but has been prevented. Hopes to go to-morrow and will expect him the day after, if that is convenient. If not, will go to him at the Hague, to talk with him at leisure.—Utrecht, 21 May, 1585.
Signed. Add. Fr. ½ p. [Ibid. II. 8.]
May 12. Theodore de Besze to Walsingham.
Praying him in this time of their greatest need—being threatened both on the side of France and by the Prince [of Savoy] their neighbour—to be a means of obtaining for them the residue of the great and liberal subsidy which was granted and promised to them by consent of the Queen and the benevolence of the lords and others and of which they have already felt the good effect.—Geneva, 12 of the old month of May, 1585.
Postscript.—Apologises for his trembling hand, which obliges him to employ that of another.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal (with key). Fr. 1 p. [Switzerland I. 15.]
May 13/23. News from Divers Parts.
Prague, 21 May.—The Archdukes Ferdinand and Charles are expected here for the Ascension, with their wives, who accompany their husbands according to German usage. The courtiers who were absent have all returned, and Duke Charles Ernest of Brunswick is coming, with many other lords and gentlemen.
At last the Emperor has granted possession of the administratorship of the Electorate to Duke Casimir on behalf of his nephew, in token of which, his Majesty has given him the renewal of the investiture.
The King of Poland has requested the Emperor to give up into his hands the rebel Sboroski, or if he will not do so, at least not to permit him to remain in his dominions.
An extraordinary from Rome brings particulars of the creation of his Holiness, and a courier has arrived from Constantinople but his cipher has not yet been translated. The Diet of Hungary is proclaimed for the middle of August. It is two years since his Majesty was in that kingdom.
Cologne, 23 May.—Letters of the 14th from Antwerp say that the gates had then been closed for four days and this because the Catholics there wished to treat with the Prince of Parma, to which the Calvinists were opposed, and there was no little dissension between them.
At Bois-le-Duc much firing was heard on the 14th and 15th, from which is was presumed that the Holland fleet had made some other attempt against the dyke of Cauenstein.
We hear that the Prince of Parma wishing to transfer the Chancery of Brabant to Brussels, those of Mechlin issued out and killed both Chancellor and escort.
Colonel Schenk is said to have occupied an entrenchment below Gueldres, at the siege of which city is M. Haultpenne, and because the Count of Meurs had spread it abroad that Schenk was the cause of the taking of Neus, the enmity between them has greatly increased, though it was merely a canon of Utrecht named Schenk, who is in the Count of Meurs' service.
From England news comes that the Queen, no longer trusting any one, has appointed 4,000 men to guard London and has imprisoned the Earl of Arundel, who was on the point of going to France.
At Neuss, besides their plate and jewels being taken, the burghers have paid a sum of money for their ransom, and the Count of Meurs has appointed new magistrates and governor in Truchsess' name, afterwards going with most of his soldiers towards Wesel, to reinforce his army and then join Truchsess, who is on his way to Neuss, with a good number of men.
The States of the archbishopric will meet on the 25th. Although the Chapter of the bishopric of Münster are willing to accept the newly elected of Cologne for their bishop, yet the nobility and other chief men will not consent thereto, nor do those of the city, where the churches have been closed and artillery planted on the walls and in the principal square; so that this election will be the cause of much disturbance.
It is said that the son of Duke Julius of Brunswick has been elected administrator of the bishoprics of Plinen [sic], Paderborn and Osnabrück. He has taken for wife a daughter of the Elector Augustus of Saxony.
Yesterday there passed near here M. de Gasbech, with four companies and some troops of broken lancers, going towards Neuss to attempt to regain the town.
Letters from Tournay say that those of Antwerp who went with their ships to drive the Malcontents from the dykes, with the aid of the Holland fleet and the Count of Hollock, were soundly beaten, with great damage, and the loss of many chief men, including Hollock.
Add. “Al molto magco, signor mio,” William Gent, English gentleman at Lyons. Italian. 2 pp. [Newsletters XCV. 15.]
May 14. Gilpin to Walsingham.
It is thought that the commissioners will embark with this fair wind at the Brill, and Mr. Davison also.
The commissioners of this province have returned from Holland and the States are summoned for Sunday. The next day they are to meet and determine on certain points treated at the general meeting, that their deputies may come thoroughly instructed to deal on behalf of these islands.
Last Monday night both this side and they of Antwerp were in readiness to make the attempt on the Cowesteensten dyke, but the rain and storm of wind from the south-east compelled this side to return, and they of Antwerp “stayed doubting how to retire,” not being seconded by the other. A fire-ship came driving from those of Antwerp to the “flott” and burned there above two hours, the enemy being afraid to come near to quench it, or to stay on the bridge or thereabouts; but we do not yet know what it effected. Two young lads with a small boat got away from Callo, came to this navy, and told Count Hollock many details of the bridge and flottes, and how the last storm did much harm, so that it is not thought to be so strong as before imagined.
The enemy is making a palisado on both sides of the said dyke, driving in great posts, to hinder the landing there or cutting through of the same.
The chief or only “stay” to the exploit is want of men, without which it is feared nothing can be done, though no endeavour or cost is spared. The great hulk and two others, wherewith to break the bridge are almost ready, and will go down to be there against the next spring [tide].
Count Maurice and most of his Council depart to-day to the fleet, and mean to pass a general muster of their men, to pay them, and then to give charge for the intended enterprise, “trusting thereby and by the power of the said Count, the more to encourage those must do the execution.”
I talked to-day to Mr. Villiers, who still thinks it best for her Majesty to accept the sovereignty, avoiding the difficulties which might fall out by protection, and the ill-will of the King of Spain being to be “procured” as much by one as the other. He will not seem to intrude himself, but being thereto required, would impart his opinion further.
He willed me to tell you that he received letters out of France from a man of note who has been informed by the sister of d'Antragues, governor of Orleans that there would be troubles ere long in England, so as these countries should find small succour thence. He desired you to remember the deciphered letter found after the overthrow of the French at Antwerp in the pocket or cabinet of Count Ainnan [St. Aignan], there slain, the contents whereof agreed with this his advice, and therefore how necessary it is to look to any in England who have intelligence with the said d'Antragues.
The gentleman who wrote to Villiers hoped ere long to meet with the sister of d'Antragues and to understand further, which he will not fail to impart to me.
Even now I receive your letter without date and will deliver that to M. Villiers, who is in town. If Mr. Davison be not here ere Monday next, I intend to go to the fleet and see how matters pass. The letter from the gentlewoman aforesaid was written about the time of the apprehension of the Earl of Arundel.— Middelburg, 14 May, 1585.
Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holland II. 9.]
Words in italics in cipher, undeciphered.
May 15/25. [The States of Utrecht to Count Maurice ?].
We send your Excellency an extract of a letter which we have received from Count Neuenaar and the deputies of the Council at Arnhem, of the 14th inst., old style. Colonel Martin Schenk has ranged himself on our side, having given the house of Blienbech into the hands of our people, which leads us to hope for still better things.—Utrecht, 25 May, 1585, stilo novo. Signed, Manninga.
We have this morning received positive news that the people of the Baron of Hohensaxe are at the house of Blienbech and that Schenk is about Calcar with a good force of horse and foot.
Fr. ½ p. [Ibid. II. 10.]