Elizabeth: October 1585, 21-25

Pages 102-120

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 20, September 1585-May 1586. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1921.

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October 1585, 21–25

Oct. 21. Jacques Rossel to Davison.
Since speaking with Captain Brulle at Flushing, I have learnt that the apostle who was with you yesterday, on his return from Holland treated very finely about the English negotiation with some simple burghers and private people, who thought it very fitting that the States and country had accepted the Queen for their princess and sovereign lady, she having always been favourable to them in their exile during the tyrannies of the Duke of Alva, and now continuing the same good inclinations and having the same love for religion, quite contrary to the French King, who would have brought them to ruin. This subject was discussed in the boat, in presence of the pensionary of this place, named Monk, who had been into Holland on the business of Admiral Treslong.
The said apostle, Villiers, not being able to restrain his passions when he heard the discourse of these burghers, put before them several passages of history, invented by himself, whereby he maintained that these countries belonged to the crown of France, not of England; making it appear by many fine reasons that notwithstanding religion, they ought to support France.
But the pensionary Monk, who had listened silently, then took up the discourse, when the burghers failed to do so, with so many good reasons that in the end the other professed that his discourse served only de manière de parler. I thought well to write this to you that you may not hope for anything but evil from him. He is at Flushing, to be ready to advise with you.—[Middelburg], 21 October, 1585. Style doubtful.
Add. Fr. 1 p. [Holland IV. 78.]
Oct. 21. Captain Edward Norreys to [Walsingham ?].
I should have written to your honour from Ostend, but that I thought it fitter for Captain Erington, who had command of the English garrison there to do so. Now my brother has sent for me to take charge of this garrison until your further order, I thought fit to tell you how I find things; the town full of inhabitants, I judge four thousand men, well-armed, mostly very well affected, yet not without a great many who would take any pretext to alter things, “and what they cannot do for the enemy or papistry, they will seek to bring about under colour of procuring their liberty and to be freed of all garrisons, and that practice was in hand before we entered, . . . but I think my lord ambassador's care and intelligence will always discover them in time.” Myself will have that care of the guards and the soldiers' behaviour that I hope no danger will arise, though the garrison is not yet such as I hope you will make it.
“We are here five companies, when we parted from my brother all strong, but with our lying ten days in open boats in continual rain and tempest, thrust together, sometimes without bread or drink, and eight days more in a church at Middelburg, hath so infected our companies and spoiled their garments that many are dead, a great many sick and the rest ragged, which in this cold air will go near to make them all sick. The captains do daily renforce their companies of able men, and still as any shall come out of England will entertain them and so change away the worst for better; for nothing will grow to inconvenience sooner than if the soldier become condemned of the burgher and mariner, which will necessarily follow, if he be weak and ragged; and every thing is here so dear that the soldier shall hardly be able to spare anything for shirts or apparel; he must pay ready money for everything, and shall not have any of those helps that other frontier garrisons have.”
May it please you therefore to give great charge for due paying of the garrison; and if you would pardon each company the 150 guilders rebated for furniture and let it be used on shirts and cloth, appointing some one to bring them over at reasonable prices, it would be a great strength to our garrison and honour to our nation.
“The best affected burghers do wish that the garrison were at least two or three hundred stronger, fearing lest when their ships shall return, and that the town shall be full of mariners, if they see our garrison weak, they may be encouraged to attempt somewhat,” which (although by God's grace, with these few I hope you need not fear the keeping of the town), could not but be a hindrance to her Majesty's affairs.
To draw three or more ancients might cause some trouble, but if you would give commission for these companies to be renforced to 200, her Majesty would be charged with less officers and the garrison strong.
“Here do also by the agreement belong certain three 'cordegardes' and watches to the townsmen, within the town [margin, they had their sentinels in the streets], where no soldiers have heretofore had anything to do, only upon the walls; so that no captain nor governor could anyways be privy to any assemblies which might be made in the town by night, whereof great inconvenience might grow. Now fearing what might fall out, and not knowing how better to remedy it . . . I requested the burgomasters that they would send some of their burghers to the captain of our watch, to teach our rounds the way, and besides, to be able to speak to such townsmen as they should meet; which they accepted so kindly that in like sort they have agreed that we shall mingle with their 'cordegardes' and have an English sentinel with them,” so that all inconvenience is prevented. Our watch is now 200 every night; the ward the same. If you renforce our companies, it will be 300, which will be enough and not too much.
“Some other things are to be considered of here, as coming in of ships in the night and such like. . . . We have to do with a people that are rude and strong, which have never known any law but their own, so that we must prevail more by love than by force, and yet strength will make them love us the better.”
I think my lord ambassador will commit the munition and artillery to Captain Erington, according to his office, but it will be well to send some English cannoneers to take the charge.
My brother appointed Captain Syms to be serjeant-major, who takes great pains and is very sufficient; if the governor will accept of him, he cannot be better provided.
My lord ambassador will send you the news; “to me belongs no more than my charge, which I doubt not, by God's grace, but to deliver well and quiet into the governor's hands.”
My old suit I must beseech you to get despatched, both for my own good and my parents'; “besides, I wrote unto Mr. Sydney to solicit your honour to think me worthy the leading a company of horse.”—Flushing, 21 October, 1585.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 6 pp. [Holland IV. 79.]
Oct. 21. Davison to Capt. Henry Norrys.
Before leaving Middelburg, I took order with Mr. Lecester to send you a month's pay out of such money as I have been driven by the Treasurer's fault to take up here upon my poor credit, which I trust he will send you forthwith.
[Concerning the weakness of the companies at Flushing.]
“My lord of Axenforde [Oxford] is returned this night into England, upon what humour I know not. Your brother Edward hath had news this evening from the General of his good success at the sconce above Arnhem.” Count Hohenloe is gone to the fleet. Of the enemy we hear little. It was doubted that he had some enterprise upon Tergoes but I think it is diverted by the entrance of the garrison withdrawn from hence.—Flushing, 21 October, 1585.
Minute. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. IV. 80.]
Oct. 21. Note of George Lecester's letter of this date, concerning the payments to the English troops. Style doubtful.
Endd. ¾ p. [Ibid. IV. 81.]
Oct. 21/31. Arnolt De Grunevelt, Governor of Sluys, to Davison.
Congratulating him upon his conclusion of the treaty, the only means for preservation of the Religion and safety of good patriots. Since hearing the cannonades yesterday, he has felt a firm hope that things will go from good to better, not doubting but that God will enable his lordship to complete his good work, and see all put in order by her Majesty or her lieutenant-general, which will not only be sufficient (bastant) to maintain them, but to reconquer what they have so sadly lost.
The Prince of Parma has been for a fortnight at Beveren, making great preparations for an enterprise by sea and land, and has ordered the same to be done at Antwerp and Ghent. The chief part of his camp is at Stabroeck, where victuals continue to grow dearer, bread which used to be sold for two or three liarts now costing two patarts, and other things in proportion. Many Hollanders and Zeelanders come from those quarters, wherefore it is more than necessary not to permit licences, if the war is to be carried on as it should be done. It is the only way to weaken the enemy and to hope for a good and speedy issue.—Castle of l'Escluse, 31 October, 1585.
Signed. Add. Endd. 13/14 pp. [Holland IV. 82.]
Oct. 21/31. Captain Williams to the States General.
I hear from the English ambassador that you have been informed of divers offences committed in the Island of Tertolle by the English soldiers. We are scattered in so many places that it is impossible for General Norreys or myself to have an eye to all their disorders, but I swear to you on the faith of a soldier and a Christian that in regard to those at Tertolle, I have had no complaints at all, save of a serjeant being drunk with the bailiff, and he was well beaten. Upon the bailiff's letters, I wrote to his captain, as an example to the others, to disarm the serjeant and cashier him. The captain sends me word that he has done so. If he has not, I will deal with him. [Here follows an account of a disturbance in the market place at Bergen, due to Walloon and Flemish freebooters, of whom there are many in the town, under no ensign or cornet. The soldiers did no damage beyond wounding a blustering person who uttered threatening language against great personages.]
Her Majesty's will and express commandments are such that if there should fall any disgrace in her service she would lay the fault upon the chiefs, and for less faults than those of Tertolle have shown to your honours (if they were true) would hang the captains and highest officers to content the burghers. At midnight I trussed up three of the principals upon the gibbet, in addition to two who were strangled in the lodging.
If your honours will consider how many such complaints are poured into your ears, you will believe that they are made by the instruments of Messieurs St. Aldegonde and de “Preigneaulx” and others, espaignolises and illwishers to her Majesty's honourable intentions to this country.
The other day Assiliers (Achilieres) and others who are prisoners with the enemy warned me to keep good guard and that we were sold; saying, search the town and you will find more than two hundred free-booters bearing arms who are under no ensign or cornet; and that there was never a day that some of them did not go into the enemy's army.
Next day, after we had proclaimed on pain of death that all who were not of this garrison should leave the city; that all vivandiers not under any captain of the garrison were to come together that order might be taken, and that no burgher or any other was to lodge any stranger (not of the garrison) without giving their name to the burgomaster or the commander in the town; at midnight we made a search and found about eighty who had neither captain nor passport, not counting those who had left, for fear, the day before. The next evening the captain of the guard came to tell me where there were eighteen, with their arms and matches lighted. I went there with captains of all sorts of nations, and some of the guard, and having entered, the serjeant-major and other captains told me they were a broken company, who had neither held guard or done service for a long time.
Whereupon I took away their arms, telling them to send some persons to your lordships or Count Hollock to know your pleasure in their behalf; being always ready to restore their arms at your first command.
Since, Captain Utanricq of Tertole has been drunk in this town, before Captain Gourdon, the lieut.—colonel of Mr. Balfour (Barfourd) and many other honest men. He spake outrageous words against great personages and their action in your service. For my part, if you will do me the honour to call me before your lordships, if I do not reply to all complaints invented against our men, I shall be content to remain in disgrace with her Majesty, your lordships and all other good men in the world. If he is not a soldier, I will put him to shame with the pen; if he is, with arms, before all the world. If it cost me my life, I would rather be dead than in disgrace with her Majesty. That you may believe that I desire to do you service, I send you a copy of my letters to the Baron de Creange (Grehanche) and the Admiral de Nassau [see p. 74 above] whom I will always support so far as is in my power.—Bergues, 31 October, 1585.
Copy. No signature or address. Endd. “Ultimo Octobris, stylo novo, from Captain Williams to the States.” Fr.pp. [Holland IV. 83.]
[Oct. 21.] “A note of such things as are to be propounded to the Commissioners.”
That the States General be moved to send their deputies to Middelburg by Nov. 10, with absolute authority to treat with the Earl of Leicester.
That payment be made of the moneys disbursed for the levying and arming of the 2,000 footmen, and the levy of the pioneers.
To take their advice what course shall be held with Count Maurice, chef de Conseil; Count Hollock; [Margin, Count Guillaume, governor of Frise]; the Count Neuenaar and Justin de Nassau, Admiral in Zeeland.
To learn the cause of the delay [Margin from 6 to 14 October] in the delivery of Flushing.
To recommend to them the towns of Sluys and Ostend. [Margin, M. de Warmont, admiral of Holland. Sieur de Gronevelt, governor of Sluys.]
To know what interest Count Maurice has in Flushing and what satisfaction is to be made to him for it.
To move them to write that order be taken to make the passage more sure.
To know whether they have commission to perfect the treaty.
To declare to them the misusage of certain Flushingers lately taken and brought to Dover.”—Undated.
Marginal notes and corrections by Burghley. 1 p. [Holland IV. 84.]
Oct. 21. Rough draft of the above, partly by Walsingham.
Endd. with date. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 85.]
Oct. 21. Duke Casimir to Walsingham.
When the Sieur de Segur arrived here, all things were so arranged, that if the hope of receiving the promised sum from England had been fulfilled, there is no doubt the King of Navarre would have been at once succoured, and he will still be so, if the means which by your letters you assure him of, shall arrive. Although you know well the importance thereof, I pray you most earnestly that you will lend a helping hand that the Sieur de Guitry, who is going to England with this sole object, may be despatched with the said aid as soon as possible, in order that the business may be immediately taken in hand in good earnest for so just a cause as that of the King of Navarre; who, if abandoned, will drag down with him to ruin and perdition all those who profess the reformed Religion. Heidelberg, 21 October, 1585.
Signed. Add. Endd. Fr. ¾ p. [Germany, States III. 81.]
Oct. 22./Nov. 1. Act of the States of Holland and Zeeland, appointing Count Maurice of Nassau (in the place of his father the late Prince of Orange) governor, captain-general and Admiral of Holland, Zeeland, West Friesland and the Brille, with all the powers appertaining to the office.—The Hague, 1 November, 1585.
Translation. Endd. “The election of the Count Maurice to the government of Holland and Zeeland.” Fr. 2 pp. [Holland IV. 86.] Printed in Bor, bk. xx. f. 85.
[Oct.22./Nov. 1?] “A copy of the Instructions given by the States General to the Count Maurice.”
Endd. Fr.pp. [Ibid. IV. 87.] Printed ut supra, f. 85a.
[These documents are probably those mentioned by Davison in his letter of Nov. 29 as being only a “project,” as the Instructions have not the final passage concerning the English governor which appears in them as printed by Bor.]
Oct. 22. Davison to Walsingham.
“It pleased her Majesty at my coming over, for the better inclining the affection of this people to accept of her garrison, to command me in her name to promise them some immunities and advantages above other strangers for their traffic in London and some other ports of England.” Whereof I have put them in hope both here and at the Brill, and find them the better encouraged to set forward this action. I therefore beseech you to move her Majesty to think of some way in that kind, wherein a small benefit may work a great deal of good.
It had not been amiss that Sir Philip Sydney had come armed with some commission in that behalf, which would “make himself the more grateful, as her Majesty the better assured of them.”—Flushing, 22 October, 1585.
Holograph. Add. Endd 1 p. [Holland IV. 88.]
Oct. 22. Davison to Walsingham.
This morning I received the enclosed [wanting] from Mr. Copcott, “a very honest and discreet merchant of our nation” at Middelburg. I have written to him to send the merchant to me, by whom we may discover further particulars. I will spare no cost, the matter being too weighty to be lightly overpassed, although I hope the Lord will still preserve her Majesty against all their villainous attempts.
“I hear that Ringoult, under a pretended commission to pursue such as traffic with the enemy, lurketh still in England, with some favour and countenance.” The man, whatsoever is thought of him there, is esteemed of all men of judgment here to be an agent underhand for the Spaniard. He followed the commissioners into France, as he did into England, and had often intelligence with Don Bernardino; and how likely it was he would stay there “on so slender a charge as he pretendeth” I leave to your judgment.—Flushing, 22 October, 1585.
Postscript.—I am credibly informed that the numbers in garrison here are not above 550, “which may be always driven forth at the discretion of the inhabitants if they were ill affected.” I pray you consider this in time.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 89.]
Oct. 22./Nov. 1. Gullaume De Maulde to Davison.
Congratulating him on the entrance of the English into Flushing, the happy result of his successful negotiations on behalf of the Queen his mistress, which he hopes by God's aid will be the beginning of the deliverance of their desolate country.
It is much to be desired that her Majesty should have absolute authority as to the war, both by sea and land, as the provinces think rather of their own particular preservation than of what is most necessary for the country. One of the Council of Zeeland has lately complained to him of the little order there is at the fleet, and of the lack of guard against the traitorous “Lourendraies,” of which they saw the proof two days ago, when men coming from Ostend saw the enemy on the sea-side towards Blankenberg awaiting the ships of these “Lourendraies” which brought them victuals, one of which they saw discharging. Strict orders in this behalf will be the only way to bring their enemies to reason.
He yesterday received the very sad news that one of his sons, obedient and god-fearing, having left Ostend to go to the war with a good troop, received a shot above his eye from an arquebuss and is in great danger of his life. He is one of those upon whom he most depends to be the staff of his old age, but God's will be done.—Sluys, 1 November, 1585.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Fr. 1 ½ pp. [Holland IV. 90.]
Oct. 22./Nov. 1. The Council of Zeeland to Davison.
Being informed that the enemy means to make an attempt upon Ostend, they desire him to send letters to the English captains in garrison there, warning them to be on their guard and to take such order in the town that by their care it may be preserved from the violence or secret practices which the enemy will not fail to use to reach their end.—Middelburg, 1 November, 1585.
Signed, Chr. Roels. Add. Endd. Fr 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 91.]
Oct. 22. Segur Pardeilhan to Burghley.
As M. de Guitry will inform you of the true state both of France and Germany, I will only say that we should be ready to mount our horses to go into France with an army strong enough to pay back to the Leaguers the evils they have done to us, if the Queen had sent off the 100,000 crowns at the time when she promised them to me. M. de Guitry will tell you that as soon as ever this money is in Germany, Duke Casimir will take horse for our help. I think you would greatly regret to see that the refusal of so little (in comparison with the greatness of the evil oppressing us, the glory of God, and the great wealth of your Queen) should deprive us of the means of succouring the King of Navarre and a million of good men, who, after God, expect help from her Majesty rather than from all the rest of the world. I must tell you also that the protestant princes whom I have seen have been astonished te see that her Majesty, who might do more than any, and declared so much affection towards the King of Navarre and our churches, after keeping me three months should have sent me back to them with nothing but fine letters. This does infinite harm to our affairs, and I am reproached with it wherever I go. But if they understand that her Majesty will let us feel her bounty to good purpose, there is not one who will not aid us, for all begin to understand that the League hates them as heartily as it does ourselves, and that if it begins with us, it will continue and finish with them. It is time you let us feel some good results from your zeal to God and his church and the many great promises you have given me, praying me to assure the King of Navarre that on the very first occasion you would show him that he had no more true or faithful friend. In God's name, act so that the assurance I have given him at your request may not be a reproach to me. God gives you an excellent opportunity to bind to you an admirable prince and an infinite number of good men. I beg you, do not let it be lost.—Frankendal, 22 October, 1585.
Signed. Add. Endd. Fr. ½ p. [Germany, States III. 82.]
Has apparently been folded into a very small packet and stitched into a garment.
Oct. 22. Dr. John Schulte to Walsingham.
Three days ago I received a letter from the Senate and Messieurs of Hamburg to the Queen which they are anxious should be read and answered by her as soon as possible. I beseech you to tell me how to bring it safely to her hands.
I lately sent your honour a letter which I thought might further these negotiations to no small extent. I hope it was not unwelcome. I gather that you have come to some conclusion in regard to it; so at least I have learned from Robert Beale, clerk to the Privy Council, with whom, by command of those lords, I have had a conference on the whole matter.
I earnestly pray that the business may be brought to an end as quickly as possible, and that we may have our answer and return home; for the winter is coming on, the days are drawing in, and we have storms to fear at sea. Moreover we have now a ship at hand and should wish to sail about full moon, when the nights are light. . . .—London, 22 October, 1585.
Postscript.—When I wrote this, I thought you were about to come to London, and that I could have had an answer at once, but as I learn you may not be back so soon, to save time I have given the Hamburg letter to the bearer, John Roberts, my friend, and beseech you to present it to the Queen and get an answer from her in writing. And as the bearer has other things to communicate to you, which could not be put in writing, I pray you to admit him to a conference with you.
Latin. 2½ pp. [Hamburg and Hanse towns II. 23.]
Oct. 23. Rough notes of the entertainment of the governors of the Brill and Flushing.
Partly in Burghley's hand. Endd. with date. 1 p. [Holland IV. 92.]
Oct. 23. Deputies of the States General to Walsingham.
On behalf of one Anthony Carliel, who is engaged in a dispute with Dr. Nutius before the Chancellor “here,” in relation to certain wills, of which Carliel is the chief executor, and which concern the wife of Nutius. For three years he has not been able to obtain his quittance because of the cunning and tricks employed by Dr. Nutius in hopes of tiring the said Carliel, who is a very peaceful man, in no way made for the pursuit of such business.
They pray his honour to lend a helping hand to prevent Nutius from diminishing the force of the said wills, but that they may remain in their integrity and take the effect which right and justice demand; and that to this end he will recommend Carliel to her Majesty, that she may grant him favourable letters to the Chancellor, in which they believe she will make no difficulty, since she has been pleased to grant the same to Nutius at his request.—London, 23 October, 1585.
Signed by the 4 deputies. Add. Endd. Fr. 1 ½ pp. [Holland IV. 93.]
Oct. 23. [Davison] to——
The affair of M. Martini has been strongly recommended to me by some worthy friends of mine here, well-affected to their religion and native land. I have also myself known him long and well, and believe him to be far removed from the crime they would impute to him. If they find no greater ground against him, I pray you to aid in procuring his liberty, which would make not only himself but me and his other friends your very faithful servants.—Flushing, 23 October, stylo veteri.
Postscript.—You have doubtless been informed by those of the Council here, how quietly all things went off at the entry of her Majesty's garrison. Mr. Sydney will, I hope, be here within two or three days, followed shortly by his uncle, the Earl of Leicester.
Draft, without name or address. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 94.]
[Oct. 23?] [Davison] to——
The English company which I ordered from Bergen to put into Rammekins arrived there last evening. This morning Captain Huntly, who commands them, came to tell me that they will remain on their barques, ready at any hour to do what I shall command them. Count Hohenloe wrote to me yesterday from Tergoes, and sent a letter ordering M, Gistell to give place to our men whenever I desired it, but as your lordship's presence and authority would much help us, I beg you to come this afternoon to Rammekins, to make an end of the business.
Draft. Fr. 1 p. [on the same sheet as the preceding]. [Ibid. IV. 94a.]
Oct. 23. Walsingham to Davison.
I hope Sir Philip Sydney will be ready to embark on Friday next, with the two commissioners. They were directed by their colleagues to move her Majesty to accept the ratification in such from as was by them set down; but they “disallowing” of their manner of proceeding in urging her Majesty to enter into a present entertainment of 5,000 foot and 1,000 horse, mean not to move her therein. “And before her acceptation of the said ratification, she is not bound to the payment of them, and so may you answer in case you be urged herein. I will do my best to procure that P. Buys and Valcke shall receive underhand some reward.”—23 October, 1585.
Postscript.—“I hope the Prince of Condé is possessed of the castle of Angers [?]. Mr. Wotton is retired out of Scotland sans dire adieu. You shall hear of a change here shortly. I pray God it may be for the best.” Vessels pass daily from Flushing to Calais contrary to the inhibition.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland IV. 95.]
[Oct. 23.] Notes of “Points of Mr. Norreys' letters to be answered,” contained in his letters of Sept. 21, 22 and 28.
Endd. 1⅓ pp. [Ibid. IV. 96.]
Oct. 23. Walsingham to Colonel Norreys.
In answer to your inquiries whether the English garrisons in the towns shall so continue or be drawn into the field, her Majesty thinks meet to refer the matter to those to whom the States commit the principal charge of their martial causes, until the arrival of the Earl of Leicester.
Touching your desire for money to be always in readiness for payment of the companies, such care will be taken in time to come that you need not fear any such want as has been of late, which ensued “for that there was no defalcation of the imprests made here in England, as also for that the 2,000l. promised by the States . . . was not performed accordingly; which two sums would have sufficed to have made a full pay.”
And touching your advice for sending over the horsemen, we here think that only four hundred should be sent now and the rest be stayed till the spring; for in respect of the charges sustained this year by the realm in levying and mustering of men “they begin to find themselves grieved,” and it is not thought good to burden them further. Therefore only four hundred will come with the Earl of Leicester, and two bands for Sir P. Sydney and Sir Thomas Cecil, but you will do well not to let the States know of this.
For your own request for a company of horse, though all the captains were chosen and you appointed Colonel-General of the foot, yet I will do my best to procure you a band of horsemen and some allowance for the erecting of it; wherein I find my lord of Leicester very willing to concur. Yet I think you would do better to take a band in the pay of the States, for her Majesty is not minded to give so great allowance as, by the muster books, they seem to do, which is 3,000 guilders, but will only allow 2,400 by the month to a band.
As to what you write about the provision of horses and arms, it is here thought best to leave the care thereof to each captain of the bands. “Such provision as you have already made, I think Sir T. Cecil and Sir P. Sydney . . . will be glad to take at your hands.”
For the arms provided in England and lying on your hands, I have dealt with her Majesty, but she will not receive them, chiefly because they are rated by you at 28s. a corslet, whereas here they are both received and delivered at 23s. 9d.
You will do well to recommend Captain Bond to Sir Thomas Cecil, as the choice of officers is left to the governors of the towns.
Order is already given for the severe punishment of such as disbanded themselves and returned to England.
Draft, corrected by Walsingham. Endd. with date. 41/44 pp. [Holland IV. 97.]
[Oct. 23.] A memorial for the Treasurer.
To write to his deputy to make defalcation of the imprests, both of captains and soldiers. [Margin, “Mr. Hurleston to certify the days of his imprests.”]
To urge the States for the payment of the 2,000l. if not already paid. [Margin, “which should have been paid at the first muster of the first 2,000 voluntary soldiers.”]
The payment of the money disbursed for the pioneers. [Margin, “the whole cometh to 723l. 6s. 8d.”]
To know of his deputy the cause of the diversity of the entrance of the entertainments, and to explain the payment of the bands. Also whether the month's pay was for 28 or 30 days.—Undated.
Draft. Marginal notes by Burghley. ¾ p. [Ibid. IV. 98.]
Oct. 23. The Memorial sent to the Treasurer, having an additional paragraph, that the voluntaries in the garrisons of Flushing and the Brill are to receive pay from the time of their departure from the army.
Endd. with date &c. by Huddilston. ¾ p. [Ibid. IV. 99.]
Oct. 23. Walsingham to Davison.
Her Majesty allows very well of your proceeding, and takes no exception to your accepting of the ratification as it was delivered by the States, “considering the practices held by such as affect a Spanish peace,” but she mislikes the States urging her thereby to the present entertainment of 5,000 foot and 1,000 horse, besides her garrisons, as also the deferring of payment of the sum disbursed for the provisional succour until the end of the wars, seeing that in the act as set down here, the first was not to take place for three months, and the money disbursed was to be paid within a year; “a manner of proceeding not to be allowed of, and may very well be termed mechanical, considering that her Majesty seeketh no interest in that country, as Monsieur and the French King did, but only their good and benefit, without regard had of the expences of both her treasure and the hazard of the lives of her subjects, besides the throwing herself into a present war for their sakes with the greatest prince and potentate in Europe. But seeing the government of those countries resteth in the hands of merchants and advocates, the one regarding profit, the other standing upon vantage of quircks. . . there is no better fruits to be looked for from them.”
You did well therefore to advise them, upon their urging of the present payment of the 2,000 men, not to stand upon terms with her Majesty in that behalf.
Although her Majesty does not blame you for accepting the ratification, she finds fault with us, her commissioners here, for yielding that in addition to the 5,000 foot and 1,000 horse, she should be burdened with the present entertainment of the garrisons of the cautionary towns, but I hope she will see it accomplished, both for her own honour and our credit.
Touching the sending over the governors and the treasure, the necessary order is taken. The cause of the present lack of money is, first that the under-treasurer made no defalcation of the imprests made here both by captains and soldiers, as directed by the treasurer; secondly, “that the 2,000l. promised by the States to have been paid to Colonel Norreys upon the muster of the 2,000 voluntaries, was not answered according to promise; wherewith her Majesty is not a little offended, seeing how little care they have to yield her satisfaction;. . . which she imputeth rather to proceed of contempt than of any want or necessity, which, if it should fall out to be such as by them is pretended, then doth she conceive her bargain to be very ill-made, to join her fortune with so weak and broken an estate. And surely Sir it is a thing greatly feared indeed, that the contributions they bear us in hand they will yield, will fall out more true in paper than in payment, which, if it should so happen, would turn some to blame, whereof you (amongst others) are to bear your part.”
The money taken up by you on credit is satisfied. To prevent inconvenience for lack of pay, especially in the cautionary towns, order shall be taken with the Merchants Adventurers to see the two governors furnished with money. And although there is no reason for her Majesty to yield to the present allowance for 2,000 men before the expiration of the three months, as urged by the ratification, yet we hope to procure her to do it for the 1,200 men in the cautionary towns, for which orders shall be given to the treasurer.
According to your advice, letters are written to Count Hollock thanking him for his readiness in putting Flushing into her Majesty's hands, and if he is still disposed to repair hither I will do my best that he be received with due honour, “though of late years, we do not carry that regard to the well usage of strangers that heretofore we have done.”
Letters of thanks are also written to the young Count Maurice, for his furtherance of the delivery of Flushing.—The Court at Richmond, 23 October, 1585.
Signed. Add. Endd. 3 ½ pp. [Holland IV. 100.]
[Portions of this letter are quoted (not quite verbatim) by Motley (United Netherlands i, p. 319 et seq.). On p. 320, 7 lines from the bottom, “out” is mis-printed as “not,” which alters the sense.]
Oct. 23./Nov. 2. Villiers to Walsingham
I am sorry for the taking of M. Etienne Le Sieur, and the more so as I hoped to hear from him good news of you and Mr. Sidnei. Mr. Davison will have told you how things have gone here, and I will only add that my advice being asked by the magistrates of the town and by the Count of Nassau, I hope I have done nothing but what was for the service of God, her Majesty, the house of Nassau and the States, although I have followed another way than some deputies wished to see, and I confess I have tried rather to maintain the honour and dignity of the house of Nassau than of any other.
God be thanked, all has passed here without disturbance or delay; I pray God to give it His blessing. I seek no profit or advancement whatever, but hope for the king favour of her Majesty and her lieutenants, being assured in my conscience to have merited no other. The chief good which I desire is that they will leave me with my books, though I will not refuse to do what is in me when commanded by those who have the legitimate power.
I have read what you wrote to me concerning St. Aldegonde and have since seen his apology. I am very glad you find him more excusable, for I think every honourable man should know how to distinguish right from wrong, and to observe what is to be accused and what excused. And as to what excused. And as to what you say that he heretofore maintained what was directly contrary to the Word of God, forgive me if I reply that there is a great difference between a bare question, and one clothed by circumstances. Moreover the question has changed several times, and it is too hard to say that it is directly contrary to God's word; which I do not say in order to enter into debate with any, for by nature I love not contention unless for defence of the church, and not least with your honour whom I have always honoured; but to prevent, to the utmost of my power, the putting of blame wrongfully on any.
As to his apology, if you desire my judgment, I will tell you how it appears to me.
Firstly, I will not deny that I have loved and admired the virtues of St. Aldegonde, and still love the; yet if I wished to complain, I have had occasion, chiefly for the discourses held between him and the Prince of Parma; but for many reasons I will forbear; although it is a great pleasure to me to offend the Prince, and I hope to have many more means of dong so. acting still for the church of God, of which I hold him to be the chief enemy.
For the rest, I have always thought it wrong to condemn such a personage without hearing him. Now, since his apology is made public, we should judge by that, although I would rather he had defended himself by word of mouth than by writing.
I have noticed three things in it.
The beginning, in which he treats of the departure of the late Prince from Antwerp; which serves him as a basis for the second point, viz. the confusion in the city, from which he deduces the difficulty of the government. The last is the conclusion, containing his praise of the Prince of Parma and his desire for peace.
As to the first, I find three faults:—1. That his Excellency never held such opinion as he says, for long before, he tried to come into Holland, having for more than two years been pursued with extreme persecutions and protests; but seeing the disorder in Flanders, he thought by coming into that city to remedy them, and even to raise the siege of Dunkirk and secure Basse Flanders; having brought over twenty-two ensigns of the country to throw into the garrison; but Somer and his adherents at Ghent so acted that they were not able to cross the river of the Lis.
The second fault is that if it was true, St. Aldegonde knew nothing of it, for as himself has said, he had withdrawn from his Excellency, and I know well that the latter did not communicate with him by writing, save that he sent him the memoires for making a little book which he has since written in Latin, the title, as I remember, being Adhortatio cujusdam Germani nobilis ad ordines Germanioe, which doubtless you have seen. It was translated into French and Italian by Genebaldi, now in England.
The third fault is, that if it was true and he knew it, that he ought not to have said it; for the office of a faithful counsellor is not to reveal his master's secrets, either in his life or after his death.
As to the second part, which contains a long discourse of the state of the town, I know well that many of the things are true, for I saw them there to my very great regret, and these were urged on and undertaken by many who should not have done it. Other things which happened in the time of his magistracy are questions of fact, for which I cannot answer, but if they are true, I think that he had strong reasons, and should find him in many ways excusable. I leave the judgment of this to those who were present, and especially to those who had communication with the Council.
As to the third, if the Prince of Parma has such virtues as he says, I do not think it well to publish them to the people., but only to wise and discreet men, as he might discourse of the virtues of the Duke of Alva or the late M. de Guise; but better after their death than in their lifetime, if they are enemies.
But here I find two faults. Firstly, he is mistaken, seeing that the Prince of Parma has no such virtues, but following the example of the Prince of Macchiavel, puts on the appearance of them to serve his turn. One must consider what sort of people he has near him, and so will find out what is his nature, which he covers artificially, and not be astonished if he deceives many others when he deceives such a personage as this.
The other fault is that by this enumeration of his virtues, and instances of the towns which, he says, have been so well treated-which is however false-many other towns may be tempted to seek an agreement, seeing that M. de St. Aldegonde, who has so often warned them to beware of the enticements of the Spaniard, begins to sing so highly the praise of the Prince and of his good treatment of the towns. And as to the conclusion of the peace; as in the States we do not (as in the schools) dispute of general questions but of particular ones, it is not to the purpose, and indeed is harmful to discuss such a question without clothing it in its circumstances and debating whether at this time, the country being in the state it is; the King of Spain, - with his house, his alliances, and his power over the people (should they make an accord)-being likewise in the state he is; whether it is even possible to make an accord of any sort with him without the inevitable and entire ruin of the Religion. For may part I believe it is not, and yet I love war no more than any other.
This, Monsieur is my poor opinion, which it may please you to keep to yourself, for I still love and esteem St. Aldegonde greatly.
I hope to go to-day into Holland, to be present at the meeting to consult how to keep the house of the late Prince in peace and friendship. I go in the name of the Princess and her little son, but I shall not fail to be solicitous in like manner for the affairs of the other children; and am assured that all will remain peaceful, for I see what great friendship they bear one to another.
I should do myself wrong to undertake to commend to you the affairs of M. de Nassau, for he has written to you of them, but if the proposal contained in the memoires which M. Davidson has sent pleases you, and you think I might be of use in keeping up the friendship between the said Count and M. de Sidney, of which I made the first overture, I will gladly employ myself in that and in all else that you may command me.—Flushing, 2 November, 1585.
Postscript.—If M. de Nassau were sure of the time and place of the Earl of Leicester's arrival, he intended to go to meet him. Mr. Davison has promised to advertise me of it, but I shall not be long in Holland.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Fr. 5 pp. [Holland IV. 101.]
Oct. 24. The Deputies of the States to Walsingham.
Our affairs here being now (thank God) so far advanced that our stay would be of no further use, while our presence in the Low Countries might be of service, we wish to pray her Majesty to grant us our dismissal, and therefore ask you to tell us when it will please her to grant us audience to that end, and that it may be as soon as possible, it being understood however that two of us will wait to accompany the Earl of Leicester. If Mr. Sidney could be ready within four or five days, the who are first to depart would wait to accompany him. The presence of these gentlemen is very necessary there at this conjuncture (especially in regard of Flushing),as is also a supply of money for her Majesty's troops.—London, 24 October, 1585.
Signed by the four deputies. Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holland IV. 102.]
Oct., after 24. Extracts of letters from Sir Edward Stafford, touching Scotland. (fn. 1)
Sept. 24.—That there was a purpose of sending an ambassador into Scotland, but it was hindered because Pinart wished his son to be employed, and the Bishop of Glasgow, “ a knight of the order and one of quality.”
Oct. 2.—“That at Madame Montpensier's house (where is the Council Chamber of the Leaguers), it was resolved by the Spanish agent, the Bishop of Glasgow and the rest that to trouble her Majesty by way of Scotland was their best hope and surest remedy, wherein they meant to spare nothing.”
Oct. 20.—“That Haggerston, a Scot, was sent into Scotland for two purposes; either to procure that the King should steal away into France or Spain, or else that he should make some stir there, contrary to his promise made to her Majesty, to the end that through fear thereof, she might be diverted from sending forces into the Low Countries.” For which purposes Haggerston received money from the Spanish ambassador.
That upon advertisement from the French ambassador “here” that her Majesty had despatched the Scottish lords to the border, and sent 5,000 men into Scotland, those of the League would have persuaded the King that for his honour he must look into it, in respect of the ancient league with Scotland.
Oct. 24.—That the French ambassador “here” has again written of the sending away the Scottish lords, and procuring Lord Maxwell to join with them in the attempt upon Scotland; and that it is to get the King of Scots into her Majesty's hands.
Endd. 1 p. [France XIV. 101.]
Oct. 25. Leicester to Davison.
“Cousin Davison, I received your packet but right now and this bearer ready to depart, the wind serving him very well. I thank you for them and the good offices you have done for me there. I trust to be with you before the 10th of the next month at Middelburg or Flushing. I pray you assure the Princess and the Count Morys that they shall find me to the uttermost of my power their faithful servant, and to perform in all good care for them the love I bare to the noble man that is gone. I may not look for you here before I go, for I must not lack you when I come thither; you must first make me both know and known more than is yet. So leaving the rest to this bearer I bid you farewell.”—25 October, 1585.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland IV. 103.]
Oct. 25./Nov. 4. Count of Hohenloe to Davison.
What I formerly communicated to you touching Nimeguen has been discovered by him who led the enterprise, for being drunk, by threats and otherwise he so stirred up some of the magistrates of the town, that being made prisoner, he was compelled by torture to reveal the whole secret.
My cousin, the Count of Solms, having shown me his zeal and desire, more than any other potentate, to do humble service to her Majesty, I beg you to aid him to obtain a company in the three thousand horse [sic] which she is sending hither; being assured that he will acquit himself to her satisfaction.—Woerden, 4 November, 1585.
Signed. Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holland IV. 104.]
Oct. 25. Peregrin, Lord Wyllughby, to Walsingham.
My entertainment with this King has been the most royal that might be, with many sweet and affectionate words of her Majesty, and enquiries about English occurrents, in which he could better satisfy himself and me too than I could, having never had a letter since my departure. He concluded his speech in loving terms, wishing her Majesty “triumphantly and quietly to reign . . . but if she needed, he would rather declare in action than publish in words his readiness to do for her. Upon this King's good disposition, your wisdoms may work much.”
The general cause of religion stands in cold terms with all the princes of Germany. “If these matters be not laboured but only 'proponed,' they be drowned in the bottom of a cup and frozen with the least north-east wind.” If some sufficient man were sent with authority, things might be drawn to a reasonable issue.
“It is thought here the King of France feareth Germany's forces, and if any rumour thereof were 'sparsed,'he would grow to a more favourable composition with Navarre. If therefore there were a semblance made by Casimir and the Landgrave of Hesse to levy forces, and some small portion of laufgelt given, only to have men in readiness at a day, though the camp never marched, it may be thought it would make a fair day in France.” And if the King of Denmark would join with them to solicit the King of France, not in his particular causes but for their general care in religion, to “hold his former promise and royal word given unto the King of Navarre of his gracious inclination rather to him than the Guises,” and that this might be ratified by her Majesty's lieger there, a better state of things might yet be made without blood or cost. Her Majesty might also choose “such as might learnedly answer viva voce those wrongs which they of Formula concordiœ urge us with, and satisfy the princes of Germany,” whereby the cause might be cleared and opinion conciliated.
News is come that the Duchess of Saxony is departed, and the King mourns for her death in ceremony only, for he conceived it unkind that his own sister should exact as great interest for the treasure he borrowed of her husband in his wars of Sweden, as the greatest usurer might do of a stranger. It is thought the Duke will not long live after, and it were happy that so great an enemy to all religion should now take his leave.
“This King has abolished all images in his churches, and not only he but divers of his nobles are grown to be good Calvinists, in which religion and all other good letters he carefully bringeth up his young princes.”
If I have written too much, excuse it, as proceeding from care to do you service, and not of overweening conceit. I beg that I may be protected from such as would make any claim to my inheritance in my absence, otherwise than for debt.— The Court of Denmark, 25 October.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Denmark I. 64.]
Oct. 25. Lord Willoughby to Leicester.
To the same effect and almost in the same words as the preceding. In conclusion, assures Leicester that if the rumours he hears of his Lordship going into “Flanders” prove true, he will be found ready to wait upon him “in such mean equipage” as his fortune in a foreign country permits.—The Court of Denmark, 25 October.
Holograph. Add. Endd.pp. [Ibid. I. 65.]


  • 1. These letters are not amongst the State Papers.