Elizabeth: Miscellaneous, 1587

Pages 463-472

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 21, Part 1, 1586-1588. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1927.

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Miscellaneous, 1587

[1587? (fn. 1) ] Stafford to Walsingham.
Captain Mazin [del Bene] brought me this morning a packet which he said was delivered him, as he came to see me, by one that was booted and spurred that he knoweth not; desired him to deliver it me, that he would come and see me himself. Opening it afore him, I found a letter in it to me from M. Clervant, and in it this packet to Buzenval, which I pray your honour to send him, for though I desire not much to have to do with the man, because it is likely to touch his master's service I will let all things cease to do any service that way. And also that I think it cometh from M. Clervant, my very friend, for it is with the same hand that mine was written withal. But if it be of the same date, it hath lain long a seasoning by the way, or else here, which hath been a common thing of any thing that hath come to me directed, either to be long kept or never to be delivered at all. In my conscience Mazin knows not of it, for he is my very friend, but I think it was put into his hands indirectly by them that long kept it here, and now knowing the amye is here, thinking that I might come to the hearing of it, have sent it me now. God make them good men! For my part, whilst that stirring may do any harm, as I have promised you, I will never open my mouth. I would to God I might be but assured that their poor master might not be doubly dealt withal here and evil served; for in truth, as little cause as I have given me, I could be contented to lose as much blood as I am able to spare that their things might go with contentment and good fortune; for I cannot but love that name, besides the common interest and her Majesty's service.
"And truly, Sir, if her Majesty do now keep them up, they are in a fair way never to trouble her with charge again; and if for a small thing she let them sink now, surely I think she doth very evil and that which she will not recover again.
"Charles Arundel was he that gave me notice of the letter that came to this Abbot, and by that means I found means to have the letter delivered to a wrong place and so was carried to Queen Mother. And upon that he was taken, though Queen Mother slipt it till the King was advertised, who in post sent to have him taken. Certainly very great memorials and many were found of the treaty with the Prince of Parma, the King of Spain and the League; but I am afraid that the Queen Mother hath suffered them to be embezzled, for fear of discovering too many things. It was a second Salecedo (fn. 2) if he be well sifted. As soon as ever he was taken and his papers seized, he cried out presently Ah, je suis mort."
I pray you let nothing of this be known "neither of the discoverer I mean nor that I was any dealer in it, for I would not be named in any such thing. At this time it is dangerous and the other were undone." [Undated.]
Add. 1 p. [France XVII. 145.]
Words in italics, in cipher, undeciphered.
Dec. "Answers to the calumniations published against her Majesty by the King of Spain and his ministers.
Her Majesty's succours to the Low Countries "proceeded at the first by solicitation of the principal noblemen and coun- sellors of the same country, to aid them against the invasions of the Spaniards, until the King might (fn. 3) by their messengers, being noblemen, declare their griefs and have his favour to continue as his faithful subjects, with the use of their ancient liberties, to the which the King had sworn at his Joyous Entry."
The end for which her money was lent, to maintain them against the threatenings of the Spaniards, is to be seen by the obligations of the nobility and great towns of the provinces.
"Furthermore, she lent them money for their continuance in their obedience, because they should not in their desperation yield themselves and their countries to the crown of France, whereunto they were many times by ambassades sent from the French King earnestly solicited, and whereto some singular persons amongst them were very prone; but by her Majesty's aid and comfort, they were stayed.
"Whilst these things were in this state, some of the provinces, with a whole consent, offered to her Majesty to become her subjects; being, as they said, desperate of any mercy or favour from the King, by means that he would not hear their complaints, being so wrongfully incensed by the Duke of Alva and the Spaniards, who sought nothing more than to make conquest of the countries. But it is notorious to the world, how oftentimes her Majesty did refuse the same; wherein is to be noted of all the world with what mind she did only aid them, without seeking any profit thereby to herself; the like whereof she did in delivery of Scotland from a conquest intended by the French, without retaining to herself any village or portion of land in Scotland. And to make it apparent to the judgment of the worst minded man that can be, that her Majesty's actions tended always to have all those countries to continue in the possession of the King of Spain, as Duke of Burgundy, so as she and her realm and her successors and the people thereof might live in that mutual amity, friendship and intercourse as had always been betwixt their two fathers and ancestors . . . these her proceedings following shall make manifest."
First, at her entry to her crown she sent an ambassade of honourable persons into Spain, the Viscount Montagu and others, to offer and require confirmation of the treaties made between their two fathers, but though this was long pressed by her ambassadors, they were in the end dismissed without any answer to satisfy her Majesty. After this, her subjects trading into Spain were there cruelly used; many famished in prison or otherwise put to death; many bereaved of all their goods; yet her Majesty, notwithstanding the solicitations of her subjects never caused any of his subjects to suffer death, imprisonment or confiscation of their goods; but divers times she sent ambassadors to complain thereof and seek remedy. "But for the most part, the answers were that his ministers should answer thereto, and many times, that the house of Inquisition had their authority above him, and so the wrongs were ever referred to that judgment seat, when otherwise, the confiscations of her subjects' goods came to the benefit of the King himself, and the colour of the Inquisition served to maintain such open injustice."
It followed that when by like cruelty used by his governors, being Spaniards, in the Low Countries, her Majesty, perceiving the dangers that likely might grow by the desolation of those countries, with whom she had an interest of amity by ancient treaties, did send yearly ambassadors to procure a pacification of those troubles, "whereof a particular note of the persons and times do follow."
1574. In the Duke of Alva's time, by her ordinary ambassador, Sir Tho. Challoner, she informed the King of the dangers to his State.
1575. In the time of the Commendador, Luis de Requesens, she sent Mr. Robert Corbett to him and Sir Henry Cobham to Spain, to move the King to receive his subjects to favour.
Also John Hastings to the Prince of Orange, to advise him to leave dealing with the French. Sir Henry Cobham in his time used all good persuasions to the King to accord with his subjects, who said he would send answer to her Majesty by one of his own, which was M. de Champygny.
1575[-6]. M. Champigny came from the Commendador to dissuade her Majesty from giving help to the Prince of Orange, or accepting his offer to take Holland and Zeeland into her possession.
1576. At the death of the Commendador, Mr. Davison sent to the governors then appointed, to solicit a peace.
Sir John Smith sent again to the King of Spain to solicit a peace in the Low Countries.
November. When Don John of Austria came to the government, Sir Edw. Horsey sent for the same purpose.
December. Dr. Wilson sent to Don John, to mediate a reconciliation.
1577. Mr. Davison sent with like message.
December. Sir Thos. Leighton sent to Don John to move a cessation of arms until Mr. Wylkes came out of Spain.
1577. Mr. Wylkes sent to Spain to declare her Majesty's actions in favour of the King and to warn him against French practices in the Low Countries.
1578, April. Mr. Wylkes after his return from Spain sent to Don John, "to renew a surcease of arms."
May. Lord Cobham and Sir Francis Walsingham sent to the Low Countries "to treat for a peace and to stay the proceeding with the French, wherein they could do no good."
After this, Mr. Edw. Wotton sent to Portugal and to the King of Spain, "to show the Queen's intention to have a pacification in the Low Countries and to live in peace with the King; but none of all these solicitations and remonstrances could prevail either with the King or his ministers."
1578[-9] February. William Wade sent to the King "to declare the causes of the dismissal of Bernard[ino] Mendoza, the particularities of whose practices are in a paper apart.
"To conclude, no man can show that ever her Majesty sent any person to nourish the disunion, or to move any of the King's subjects to forbear to be restored to the King; and that she referreth to be tried by any of the noblemen that now remain in the Low Country and are reconciled to the King; who can best testify that all her Majesty's actions were only to bring the countries into peace and to avoid the Spanish army [and] other strange forces out of the Low Countries."
Entirely in Burghley's hand, and endorsed by him "Dec. 1587." "Three memorials for the Commissioners." 5¼ pp. [Spain II. 87.]
[As the above two sheets are marked C. and D. there are probably two previous ones, missing.]
A 17th century copy of the latter part of the preceding paper, endorsed by Sir Joseph Williamson:—
"Extract of a paper in old Sir W. Burghley's hand, now in the Paper Office. 1671. J.W."
Endd "1578" [i.e. date of last embassy mentioned]. [Spain II. 88.]
Notes, in the handwriting of one of Sir Joseph Williamson's clerks, headed "France, 1583-87. The principal points negotiated by Sir Edw. Stafford."
While ambassador resident at the French court, he had commandment from the Queen to negotiate these particularities.
1. To assure the French King that whatever reports had been made to him that her Majesty "went about to interrupt the ancient amity between Scotland and France," she never did or meant to do any such thing, so long as he did not use the amity of that realm to the disquiet of her estate.
2. To declare the sincerity of her dealings "against the untrue meanings of naughty disposed persons" who might put it into his head that she wished to maintain practices against him by the King of Navarre and others of his subjects, "which Stafford dilated throughly," according to her direction.
3. To request the French King to forbid Mauvissiere to meddle with the Scottish Queen's matters, which was but a colour for him to do bad offices.
4. To thank the King for punishing those naughty persons who by pictures and otherways sought to wrong her Majesty.
5. To answer the King's two requests, viz.: (1) to forbear to assist the King of Navarre; and (2) to advise the said King to conform himself to the Catholic religion.
6. To urge the King (upon the declining state of the Low Countries) to concur with her in some course for abating of the Spanish King's greatness.
7. To solicit the release of all English ships detained "by virtue of an arrest royal."
8. To demand that Morgan, Paget and other fugitives be delivered or banished from France.
Endd. 3 pp. [France XVII. 146.]
[All the above points relate to matters negotiated in 1583–5 or quite early in 1586.]
Summary of ships of Fecamp, taken and spoiled by the English from the 1st of January last, 1587; according to the reports made in the jurisdiction of the Admiralty at the said town of Fécamp.
Andrew Duprez, master of the Dauphin [i.e. Dolphin] returning from St. Vast in Portugal, laden with salt, taken and carried into Poole Road in England, where it struck a rock and was lost; according to report made in the above Admiralty on 23 March last.
Nicolas Asskew [?], master and purser (fn. 4) of the Mary, returning from the mackerel fishing, boarded on St. Barnaby's day by an English ship and carried to 'Porchemue' [Portsmouth], pillaged and stripped; according to report [as above] on 26 June last.
Jehan Leysel, master of the Martin, returning from the said fishing, taken off the Isle de Baz [Batz] by two English robber ships, who seized all their pecaille and fish, which they sold at Roscou, according to report [etc.] on 26 June last.
Robert Yeomel, master of the Neptune, returning from Cape Verde, whither they had gone by licence of the Admiral with sugar, sweetmeats, Madeira wine and money, taken and boarded off the Isle de Baz on the eve of St. Barnaby by three pataches and one great English ship, which took it into Plemue [Plymouth], where they divided the said merchandise and detained the ship. The captain of the great English ship is named Captain Lamont; his lieutenant, John Sery [?] and the purser, Peter Lymon, dwelling at Saltache, near the said Plemue. [As reported etc.] on 1 July.
Jehan Jacques, master of the Marguerite, returning from the Canaries, laden with wines etc., taken by the English in May last, and carried into Plemue, where they discharged part of the said wines; sending back the said Jacques and his crew staff in hand; after which they sent the ship towards La Rochelle with what remained of its merchandise; but while crossing it was met by the guards, who recovered it from the English; and it was taken to Havre de Grace by Captain Morant, captain of the bark of the said guards, and the English made prisoners at the said Havre de Grace, where they still are.
Guillaume Serguenoez (?), master of the Mary, being at 'Callix' laden with wine and salt for 'Callaes', boarded by the ships of Captain 'Drac' in Callix Road, where it was totally lost upon a rock, but with only two men in it, who were guarding it while the master and crew were collecting what they wanted.
Collated with the register of reports made in the jurisdiction of the Admiralty at Fecamp by the masters of the said ships, from the 1st of January last to this 1st of August, 1587, to be delivered to M. de la Mailleraye, Vice-Admiral of France.
Signed by two of the officers. Endd. as Extract sent by the officers there. French. 3 pp. [France XVII., 147.]
1587? Memorandam that Edmond Ansell, William Growse and James Stapers, Lucas Bawdit, laders of the Henry of Newhaven with English goods, to go from thence to Bayonne in Galicia were met at sea "two days sailing" from Newhaven by one Capt. Bertyne of the Isle of "Ray," and by him the said ship and goods carried into Rochelle and there sold as prize under colour that the goods belonged to certain merchants of Normandy and not to Englishmen.
Without date or endorsement. ⅓ p. [France XVII., 148.]
[1587?] Certificate by Sir Edw. Stafford concerning maritime causes.
That having long urged the Commissioners to have some conference touching the complaints of our merchants, they first excused it by the absence of the Admiral Joyeuse, and after his return other frivolous delays were used, "by procuration of the evil affected to this State, who are willing to have any scorn or contempt done to her Majesty's ministers.
"That it was generally triumphed at that the King did condemn her Majesty, and never vouchsafed for any cause to send anybody to him [Stafford] since the accident of the Queen of Scots.
"That he delivered the Commissioners a brief note of the complaints, which they showed to the King and his mother to have resolution.
"That our commissioners have done all and theirs nothing.
"That the King's letters are not obeyed at Nantes, and in no place where the Duke of 'Mercurie' hath to do.
"That they shook their heads at Duke Mercurie. That the King hath no great rule over him in any cause.
"That notwithstanding the general release, the Duke Mercurie will still detain one ship at Nantes.
"That the King only can grant letters of mark and revoke them . . .
"That they will not revoke their letters of mark, but will have them only suspended for a time, and that they crave answer of this resolution within six weeks.
"That without letters of mark to be here granted by her Majesty, he can hardly give our Englishmen any hope to recover anything.
"That certain letters of mark are already granted to La Gorse, but suspended until answer from their lordships.
"That the commissioners . . . manifestly bewray that there is no hope of justice.
"That he is or ought to be wise enough to know what is to be done to have remedy in such cases.
"That he seeth not how the commissioners bring any profit or remedy, not so much as abridging of time, having only authority to hear and report, but not to decide or execute anything, nor can the King give it.
"That the [French?] ambassador had commended our readiness in justice, but that no execution followed."
Copy. Endd. "From the Ambassador concerning maritime causes." 1½ pp. [France XVII. 149.]
[1587?] Paper headed "Touching succession."
It is not a certainty that the whole house of Bourbon is against the Prince of 'Condy,' and if the succession be wrested from him, it will not be to give it to them, for he is in all equity before any of them. "And besides that no exception can be taken against him for religion . . . he is proclaimed heir apparent, which is the surest band in France. For Espernon, for some private liking to Montpensier, he may be distracted, because of his match with Joyeuse, but he is also matched with the Constable's house, who favours that prince, and therefore he is too wise, without great likelihood of success to declare himself. But in all your proceedings, it shall be good to be rather an observer than to declare yourself in these things, and as you see the course of things . . . follow this rule always where there is not palpable exception: Oppose not to known right, for that God will prosper. . . .
"To the Spaniards' party, . . . never add any countenance or strength, but still move with all diffidence between them . . . for the good of France itself."
"Touching the heads of the Protestants there."
"The principal of the party is the Duke of Bouillon, wise, ambitious, wary and frugal. With him you may hold as strait correspondence as you can, for you may be sure he will not hold more strait with you than such as may be good for that party; only this you may ever assure them; that the Queen will not see them oppressed, if it be at any time to purpose that she declare herself; but to be at underhand charges to maintain brawls and not to see a ground how they can subsist in any action, is but to betray the cause and to weaken them.
"Tremouille . . . no way so acceptable to him, nor hath the means to insinuate into the K." Undated. 1½ pp. [France XVII., 150.]
[The Duke of Bouillon was taken ill in Dec. 1587, and died on Jan. [1]-11, 1588. The title then lapsed until 1591, when it was bestoued on the Vicomte de Turenne on his marriage with the late Duke's sister and heiress. Conde died in March, 1588.]
A fragment, endorsed "Lylly, decifred."
"He desired that the French King should accept [blank] that against time serving it his servants might prepare themselves. Before his arrival, every man cried that the Queen's Majesty should treat wars in the Low Countries; now thereof there is no word." 4 lines. [Ibid., 151.]
Notes of the governors of towns etc., in Poitou, Angoulmois and Guyenne. Undated. 1½ pp. [Ibid., 152.]
[1587?] List of "Numbers of the bands of men in readiness to be embarked in Spain, and of their shipping."
Troops now at Lisbon; viz. "Terzo" of Naples and of Sicily; "besogni" [i.e. recruits] from Andalusia etc.; 19 companies from Flanders; 9 from Biscay and 29 from the garrisons of Portugal.
Total 12058.
Mariners, 6000 and more.
Other 5000 soldiers expected from Sicily with the 30 ships.
Of which are dead about 3000; fled 1000; wounded 1000.
Ships of Portugal, the Levant, Andalusia, Biscay; Nave Mandozza, and galleon of the Grand Duke.
Great ships 83.
Ships expected from Sicily, of those returned from India and New Spain, etc.
Total of the ships 154.
Italian. 1 p. [Newsletters XC., 36.]
1587. Note of goods which came this year from the "West Indeas" for the King of Spain; viz. from the Mainland and New Spain, gold, silver, plate, pearls, emeralds, cochincal, hides, anneyle; and from St. Domingo, hides, sugar, ginger, ebony, sarsaparilia, and 'linuum vite.' Total value, 12,900000 ducats.
Endd. ¾ p. [Newsletters XC., 37.]
[Undated.] List of "Ministers employed towards the King of Spain and his governors in the Low Countries."
1. Mr. Rogers. Added in another hand. "Four several times to the Prince of Orange and States and D. Casimir."
2. Mr. Corbett.
3. Mr. Hastinges.
4. Mr. Wilson.
5. Mr. Horsey.
6. Mr. Laughton.
7. Mr. Wilkes. Added ut supra "to Don John, April, 1578."
8. Lord Cobham and Mr. Secretary.
9. Sir Henry Cobham for Spain.
10. Sir John Smythe for Spain.
11. Mr. Wilkes for Spain. Added ut supra "anno 1577."
12. Mr. Wotton for Spain.
13. Mr. Wade for Spain.
14. Mr. W. Davison.
In Walsingham's hand. Endd. by his clerk as in headline. ½ p. [Spain II., 89.]
[It will be seen that this does not appear to have been taken from Burghley's list.]
1587. Schedule of accounts, endorsed by Burghley, "1587. Account of Palavicino's agents for loss by exchange of money paid in Germany."
Headed by a note that "against the same money the value of 666l. 13. 4. which was sustained for interest upon the 10000 crowns which at my first arrival here I took up for Lyons Easter fair, of Lewes Perez and Co. at 98 kruzers, whereas the crown is worth 102.
The persons named to whom payments were made are Justinian and Rizzo, for their provision and charges "in brokeage" etc.: William Shute, for salary, portage of letters, salary of messengers etc.; Lewes Perez and Co. of Frankfort, Steven Wouters, and Rene Mahew for interest of money.
Also to sundry merchants of Antwerp, Lyons, Venice and Frankfort for provisions (with the rates of exchange).
And for money which "the Perez of Noremberch "cause him to pay, "for to change 82000 florins in such kind of money as did like to him that received it; which was an extraordinary charge and unexpected."
The whole total comes to 1002l. 17s. 1d.
"There lack only 96l. 15s. 9d. sterling for the accomplishment of this sum . . .
"With note that there remaineth account to be given of the balance of 3298. 18. 5. which there is difference between the sum paid and what Justiniani and Rizzo "declare by their account to have set over."
1 sheet. [German States V. 63.]
[End of '87
or early in '88.]
Advertisements from Paris.
It is certain, howsoever men conceive in England, that the non performance of some things offered to the King of Scotland and, as he thinketh, deserved by his good carriage in these late troubles, has made more impression on him than he makes open show of, whereof those that deal for the King of Spain are not ignorant, and have resolved to take hold of it. And of late, A.B is gone thither with some money, and another with offers from the Duke of Parma to entertain those who are offended with the proceedings of England. "But this winter-time, while the preparations are making in Spain, there shall be one sent directly from thence. And it is now generally conceived that though the concurring with Spain may in the end turn to the King's prejudice, yet it may very aptly serve his present turns. The preparation in Spain is very great and the resolution constant to pursue the enterprise, and if all things cannot be ready this summer, yet with some part to molest the Queen of England's dominions."
Endd. ¾ p. [Newsletters IX. 34.]
[At this time, James was believed to be negotiating with the Prince of Parma by Colonel Stewart.]


  • 1. Not later, as Charles Arundel died on Dec. 15, 1587.
  • 2. A Spanish captain, arrested at Bruges in 1582 on the charge of intending to murder the Duke of Anjou and Prince of Orange, at the instigation of either the King of Spain or Duke of Parma.
  • 3. Sic. Qy. "Until [to] the King [they] might etc.
  • 4. bourgeoys, meaning boursier.