Elizabeth: June 1585, 16-20

Pages 542-547

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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June 1585, 16–20

June 16/26. Jaques Rossel to Davison.
According to my promise I write to tell you of our occurrences, all of which are tragic. On the 23rd, the enemy entered the land of Utrecht, with a thousand or twelve hundred horse and as many foot. The Count of Meurs, Skink, and Villers, Marshal of the camp, took the field against them, with eight hundred horse and as many foot, and on the same day they met and fought furiously. The victory would have been ours but for the arrival of seven cornets from Brabant to reinforce the enemy, who in a furious charge routed our men, by the flight of two of our cornets. The said Villers reported to be dead upon the field (though some say otherwise). Skink wounded in the arm; the Count retired to Stienvik. The people of Antwerp begin to suffer want, and are distributing victuals and bread par police. Deputies have been sent to find out what hope of succour there is, and have gone to the fleet to hasten the execution of the design against the stockade.
The deputies who should have followed you from the Brill have been twice driven back by the wind and are at Ramekins, almost as if in hiding, because of the murmurs of the people, who accuse them of negligence.—Middelburg, 26 June, 1585.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holland II. 41]
June 17/27. M. de Serres to Walsingham.
M. de Champernon's coming has infinitely gladdened our churches, giving us the good news of her Majesty's health, and of her holy desire to maintain the glory of God, the repose of the Church, and the rights of the King of Navarre. The enemies of God had woven a great web not only to envelop us but you and all the churches of other nations. God has broken the threads, and by this happy beginning makes us hopeful that the issue of these confusions will be the confusion of their undertakers. We trust that he will put it into the hearts of those to whom he has given authority and power in his Church to oppose, by common consent, the enemies of God and of their States.
All Languedoc, thank God, talks good French, and is no ways infected by the contagion of these conspirators. Dauphiny and Provence do not lack honest men to bring to nothing the designs of those who wished to embroil them. But I should greatly wrong M. de Champernon's ability if I enlarged on these things, and will only pray you, in the name of our churches, to continue to love them and persuade her Majesty to do so more and more. May God preserve her long and happily for this good work and bless the honest men who stand around her person, amongst whom you, Monsieur, hold a chief place.—Nismes, 27 June, 1585.
Add. Endd. Fr.pp. [France XIV. 11.]
June 17. Ortell to Walsingham.
“Seing divers 'fleying' tales “ spread here by our enemies, to hinder our good proceedings, I thought good to let you know (as also I have done to the Earl of Leicester) that here is arrived from the Maas a ship of Rotterdam, who says that last Tuesday sennight ” he was half seas over with the Commissioners and ships of war, but were driven back again by contrary wind,” and the Commissioners went into Zeeland, to be ready for the first wind God shall send, but cannot possibly now come from thence, the wind at sea being “nort, nort by d'east.” The shipper being asked if he had heard of any treaty by Antwerp with the enemy, said that on the contrary great preparation was made to give a new onset, and that news came from Dunkirk that the enemy are in such despair that they openly confess that if her Majesty embrace the cause of the Low Countries “ there is no longer abiding for them, but shall to their utter undoing be driven to forsake all.” I doubt not but that some will do their uttermost not only to hinder but to overthrow all good resolutions, but I believe the Lord will ere long send us a good end, and so move her Majesty's heart that she will continue her favour to us.—London, 17 June, 1585.
Postscript.—It is likewise written from Flanders that the Prince of Parma has “ forbidden no manner of payments to be done ” to any of her Majesty's subjects.
Add. Endd. English. 2 pp. [Holland II. 42.]
June 18. Adrian Saravia to Davison.
After your departure from Holland, some of my brother ministers wrote to me that they thought it would be to the advantage of the churches of Holland and the neighbouring provinces that suppliant letters should be sent to her Majesty, praying her to undertake the defence and support of these provinces. They have entrusted the matter to me and I am to send to you, for presentation to her Majesty, letters written in the name of us all. They are not so elegant or so cleverly written as her dignity demands, but my brethren did not trouble to look for a more learned pleader, either because they did not sufficiently trust others, or because no others were at hand to be cast for the part. I could not get another scribe and pray to be excused on both these heads. There was some debate whether they should send any of their order to the Queen in England, but as certain were doubtful how our orders would interpret this, they trusted they could satisfactorily transact the business by letter.
For nothing do we pray more than that we may live under the rule of her Majesty. So I earnestly beg you, on behalf of my brethren to deliver these letters to the Queen, with the strongest testimony of our love and respect. If ever she demands any good offices from us, she shall not find us ungrateful or forgetful.
I have heard no news since your departure save that we begin to have our doubts about Antwerp, whether help can reach it in time to prevent its surrender. A people accustomed to luxury will not bear the famine which this city once endured.
All things are in God's hand. I pray him to give the Queen will and courage to serve herself, her realm and us.—Leyden, 18 June, 1585.
Add. Endd. Latin. 1 p. [Holland II. 43.]
June 18. M. Danzay to Walsingham.
I have freely communicated with Mr. Bodley on what I think may be for the advancement of his charge. You know that very important affairs are not easily accomplished, even in Germany. We have powerful enemies, who begin to execute their pernicious designs, therefore it will be very needful for her Majesty to have someone always in Germany to carry out quickly what she desires, otherwise she will see no fruit, as you will learn more at large from Mr. Bodley.—18 June, 1585.
Signed, “ Votre bien humble serviteur et vray amy que vous cougnoissez.”
Add. Endd. “From M. D'Anzy.” Fr. 1 p. [Denmark I. 53.]
June 19/29. Newsletter sent from Rome.
June 22.—On Sunday, the feast of the Blessed Trinity, there was chapel in Santa Maria Maggiore, at which there assisted the Pope and all the cardinals. Cardinal Castagna sang the mass and a scholar of the Seminary preached the sermon. After chapel his Holiness went to his Vigna to breakfast, returning late in the evening to Monte Cavallo accompanied by many cardinals; it being said that after St. Peter's day, he will go to stay in Campidoglio.
On Monday was commenced the building of the new church of the Santo Spirito, and after mass was sung, the Cardinal d' Aragona laid the first stone; the Bishop of Sulmona conducted the ceremony and the Pope granted plenary indulgence; there being present many prelates and an immense number of people.
That morning, the head of another famous bandit of the house of Catalani d'Anagni appeared on the bridge, killed by his enemies, who had 500 crowns reward. (fn. 1)
On Tuesday, his Holiness went to St. Peter's, and the Duke de Nevers left Rome, having obtained from the Pope all that he desired.
Wednesday at vespers, chapel was in the Palace; and the following morning, being Corpus Domini, our Lord celebrated mass in the Sistine Chapel, in presence of all the cardinals, going in procession on foot, in imitation of Pio Quinto, with the Cardinals Medici and Rusticucci supporting him and the French ambassador carrying his train. About fifty prelates and twenty cardinals assisted, but Cardinal Vastavillani was not present, by order, as is said, of his Holiness, who had also said that he was not to appear before, nor yet in chapel; perhaps he will sell the office of Chamberlain, and might easily go to the Castle, for the old Treasurer has confessed many wrong things; and Cardinal Cesis, wishing to mediate for Vastavillani with his Holiness gave much dissatisfaction. The Bargelli of Rome are dismissed, the new ones being the Captains Pietro Paolo da Mont'Alto and Ottavio della Marca.
Advices from Milan say that the governor has ordered the cavalry to go towards Piedmont, with a great mass of money taken from the castle, it being said that they are going to the Duke of Guise, by order of the Catholic King.
On Thursday two shots were fired at the Sicilian Baroness, wife of Lelio de Massimi, by his two sons who have come secretly from Flanders. She is not yet dead, but her life cannot be saved. That evening, the whole of one front of the wall of the Imperial ambassador's palace in the Borgo fell, killing five persons.
Naples now finds itself once again in peace and plenty, but the people of the country are continually being punished, as lately happened to many, as to certain merchants, who, their shops being locked up, were taken and hanged.
Yesterday there was solemn procession to the Minerva, the Blessed Sacrament being carried by Cardinal Mondovi, (fn. 2) who this morning has taken possession of his title of Sta. Maria in Via, the fathers of which, having obtained the favour from the Pope of making their church titular, those of S. Marcello remonstrated with his Holiness, who answered only quod scripsi, scripsi.
The Pope has given orders for a tax of 300,000 crowns, to pay divers monks and convents, the portions of all officials, and it is said, certain debts of Pope Gregory.
The bandits have gone into the parts of Fermo, and have taken four of the principal men of that city, putting them to a ransom of 12,000 crowns, to be paid within five days, or they will be hanged.
It is said that at Tagarvola are 100 bandits at the requisition of Prospero Colonna, by whose zeal they will all be pardoned by the Pope, and Cardinal Colonna has brought about fifty more, with which he maintains without loss his whole legation.
Yesterday Cardinal Vastavillani was ordered to resign his office of chamberlain, the money for it to be restored to him.
Count Strasoldi, sent here last month by the Emperor in relation to the sentence given against the Duke of Parma, in the case of Count Landi, has been recalled by his Master and starts two days hence, leaving the business unfinished.
M. de Nazaret, appointed nuncio to France, left last Monday, it being understood that he has orders to make every effort to bring about an accord between the French King and the lords of the League; after which he is to remain as resident nuncio at that court.
Venice, 29 June, 1585.—Letters from Milan advertise the return thither of the Duke of Terranuova. That his Excellency had sent and was still sending arms and armour to the Duke of Guise, and that Count Antonio Ponsonio, a Cremonese, and the Marquis Malvicini were going with horsemen into his service. That when the Duke of Savoy arrives in his dominions, war will be openly proclaimed in the name of the Catholic King against the crown of France. By letters from Constantinople we hear that the new Bailo arrived there on the 30th of last month and that the old one was presently to depart for Venice. The war with Persia continued without hope of peace, and there was no further speech of the departure of Occhiali.
On Monday Paolo Giordano and his wife arrived here by gondola and are lodged in Lodovico Orsini's house, being visited by many nobles. He intends a week hence to go to Padua, it being said that he aspires to the charge formerly written of, and if that does not succeed, in September to return to Rome.
The same evening Cardinal Joyeuse (Gioiosa) departed very well satisfied, accompanied by the French ambassador as far as Lizzo Fusina.
On Wednesday there arrived from Ferrara the Japanese princes, being met at Santo Spirito by certain of the senators and taken in barges along past the view of the Piazza and the Ducal Palace by the Grand Canal and conducted to the Jesuits, their lodging, to which fathers the Signoria have sent 400 crowns for their charges. This morning, they have been into the College, and to see the Hall of the Council of Ten and other noteworthy things in the city.
They write from Nice that the Spanish galleys have been sighted, with the Duke of Savoy and his wife, 2,000 recruits, above a thousand veterans, money for that Duke and the Treasury at Milan and 300,000 crowns for the Duke of Guise.
Italian. 3½ pp. [Newsletters LXXII. 18.]
June 20/30. Mauvissière to Walsingham.
I pray you to kiss her Majesty's hands on my behalf, and beg her to remember her promise to me, and to recommend to Lord Howard, whom I see from this time is to be High Admiral of England, to see justice done to the poor French prisoners in the Marshalsea. I send you their piteous request to me, which you may show to the Queen and communicate to the Admiral. Also to take order in regard to the depredations daily committed upon the French, who never cease to complain thereof. To purge the sea of so many pirates is most expedient, and the true way to maintain these two kingdoms in peace and union.
I send her Majesty the first volume of four books of pamphlets on our troubles in France which she commanded me to show her, though there is nothing in them worthy to be seen by such a mind as her own. But I hope to write them again better, and give such place to her, her virtue and her happy reign that she will be satisfied, both for now and for posterity. I commend to you these poor people of St. Malo.—London, last of June, 1585.
Signed. Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [France XIV. 12.]
June 20/30. Bartholomew Buys Gryphius to Davison, in London.
The bearer is agent and cousin of a friend of mine, who having used his property for his country, was given by the late Prince of Orange the superintendence of the banks of Holland, and what profit he could derive from the letting of the same. He desires to have confirmation of this grant from her Majesty, believing that she is about to receive that country into her sovereignty or absolute protection, and I pray you to favour him therein.
I know that he is moving in it too soon, but it may be done on some good occasion, when more important affairs are accomplished, unless he is thwarted by some other.—The Hague, 30 June, 1585.
Add. Fr. 1 p. [Holland II. 44.]


  • 1. “taglia” :—in the sense of money given to one who kills a highwayman or rebel.
  • 2. i.e., Vincenzo Lauri, Bishop of Mondovi, elected Cardinal May 10–20, 1585.