Elizabeth: January 1588, 16-31

Pages 487-500

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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January 1588, 16-31

Jan. 22. Stafford to Burghley.
"I have written to Mr. Secretary the news that I have out of Spain, and sent him the extract of a letter that came from a very good place, as also the pitiful death of M. de Bouillon and M. Clervant.
"I have written to him in another letter what practising I find to draw the King of Navarre to the French King's will; and what will come of it I know not. For my part, I am afraid that there will be somewhat wrought with him without her Majesty, and I would fain have her have an oar in the boat; for I am afraid that you shall find the King of Navarre and that faction mad people—I dare not say ungrateful—if they once come to quiet or any prosperity without her Majesty; and that, upon that, they have not need of her. I write plainly to your lordship; I would I were deceived, for I have found it by proof, do what you can for them; and do not what you cannot do to and where they list, whatsoever you have done is forgotten. But this I pray you keep to your lordship.
"I writ also to Mr. Secretary how that the last day the French King was in a mind to have some secret conference with me. Biron sent me word of it, but it is not yet come. I know not whether it be upon the ambassador's [Chasteauneuf's] letters that came here about the same day, wherewithal they be a little moved and not contented here; for he writeth that certainly the conclusion between the King of Spain and her Majesty is upon the point and that her Majesty, if she may have peace with the King of Spain doth not care at all for the French King. I saw this with mine eyes, and therefore I can assure your lordship of it; but there must be no knowledge taken of it, nor any countenance made to the ambassador of it; for if it be, he that I saw it by must needs be discovered, who is a man of importance. But I hope to turn his bad attempt in that to a good effect. It may be I may be deceived, but I think not.
"Daily complaints every day of new wrongs and piracies maketh the evil affected have great vantage over them that have good intents here. It will, at the length, breed somewhat that will not be good."—Paris, 22 January, 1587.
Holograph. Add. Endd. by Burghley. 1 p. [France XVIII. 9.]
Jan. 22. Stafford to Walsingham.
"There is news come to-day that the Marshal Matignon's son is coming hither, and is looked for every hour; that he bringeth with him one Montigny, (fn. 1) a very wise gentleman of the King of Navarre, whom he hath given his word to present unto the King. I never heard of the man afore in my life. . . .
"I am advertised that that same St. Colombe (fn. 2) I writ to you of in my other letter was sent hither purposely from the King of Navarre, and hath had somewhat to treat with the King from him of secret. That he hath spoken with the King very secretly, that I can assure you of; what he hath treated, or whether indeed it were from the King of Navarre, that I think nobody can certainly tell, or at the least, I can by no means come to have knowledge of it. That the King seeketh all that he can to have the King of Navarre to yield him satisfaction in some point, both by the intermission of M. Memorancy, to whom he hath, as I writ in my last, expressly sent Halot de Memorency, that I dare assure you. That he hopeth the King of Navarre will be brought to satisfy him in many things, that I dare assure; but what the King of Navarre will do, that I promise you I know not. That the Cardinal of Lenoncourt hath dealt with the Pope to call in the excommunication against the King of Navarre and the Prince of Condé and that the Pope hath half promised to do it, that I can assure you.
That if the King of Navarre will come in to him the Pope will receive him most willingly, notwithstanding his bull, that I can assure you he hath passed his promise to the Cardinal; and that the League are advertised of [it] from Rome and are in great pain of it. That Memorancy hath as great credit at Rome as any, and specially with the Pope, that I do assure you, and that he hath written hither to the King marvellously in the favour of him. What to make of all this 'minglemangle' I am not wise enough to judge. I must leave it to your honour and wiser. I will do what I can to look into the depth and bottom of these things and to get certainties and then advertise your honour more particularly.
"My friend's successor, with the advertisement that I send you out of Spain that I had of him, did show me a private scroll in cipher, whereby his correspondent did advertise him that the Earl Morton was parted, and to come presently to this town, to have private access unto the two ambassadors of Scotland and Spain, and that there is some practice of importance in Scotland atreating by the Spanish faction. The said Earl is arrived here within these five days. I have a watch over him, who hath dogged him, the night before yesternight, to the Ambassador of Spain's. I will observe him all that I can. I know they look for the Bishop of Dumblin [Dunblane] shortly, who is gone by Flanders into Scotland, to treat somewhat with the King himself. I will do what I can to have an eye to those men, and do hope to discover part of their intents.
"There is news come hither for certain from Marseilles that the gallies of Algier have taken four of the King of Spain's galleys and 250000 crowns in them."
The French King was the last day upon the point to have had some secret conference with me. Biron sent me word of it, but that is not yet come. But I do think it be upon the ambassador in England's letters . . . . that no doubt we intended nothing but peace with Spain and that it was a thing concluded, and that her Majesty had no affection to the King of France if she could do anything with the King of Spain. This I know they have been moved and offended withal and Villeroy hath set it forth all he can; and whether that be occasion or no of the King's delay to speak with me, I know not; but when he cometh back from Bois de Vincennes, which I think will be tomorrow, I will know. [Requests him not to let his information about the ambassador's letters be known to any, as to Burghley, above.]—22 January, 1587.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [France XVIII. 10.]
Words in italics in cipher, undeciphered.
Jan. 22. Truchsess [late] Elector of Cologne, to Walsingham.
Among the afflictions which it has pleased God to send him during the last three months, he has granted him two consolations; one, the re-establishment of his health; the other, the recovery of the town of Bonne, (fn. 3) the loss of which has been the cause of the misery in which he has lived during the last four years. But he has great need of good friends to aid him to maintain and preserve it; in which case he should hope by God's grace to be able to repay to them the pleasure and help they have given him; and especially to have the means of acknowledging her Majesty's benefactions, and the good offices of his honour in regard to his affairs. He has talked freely with Mr. Rogers, her Majesty's ambassador, who will not conceal anything from his honour, therefore he need not write at more length.—Honslerdyck, 22 January, 1588, stylo veteri [but as regards the day of the month only.]
Signed. Add. Endd. "22 January, 1587." French. 1 p. [German States V. 68.]
Jan. 23. Stafford to Burghley.
Since writing my other letter I have received your lordship's two, in Mr. Secretary's packet. I will fulfil her Majesty's command as soon as the King comes. He has been shut up these four or five days at the Bois de Vincennes. "I cannot tell how the King will trust anything to be committed to writing, for mistrust and fear of discovery is the chiefest point I know he standeth upon, but her Majesty's will shall be obeyed.
"That which your lordship wished were communicated to the King was communicated to him by himself that I had it of, which was the ambassador of Venice that is gone now, who had it from their ambassador in Spain. And the King was marvellously moved withal, but he can keep in his passions; no man that I know like him.
"I am glad to hear that Drake goeth to visit this huge army. God send him good luck! If he can make this army unprofitable, the King of Spain is shrewdly touched in reputation and effect both.
"I am sorry the old ambassador of Venice is gone. (fn. 4) I never knew an honester, wiser gentleman in my life; nor one that is gone away with more reputation, love and honour of the King, and the bitterest enemy to the League that was in France. His successor assureth the like goodwill to me and truly hath already showed some effects of kindness; but I do not think he hath that in him that the other had. He hath the same commission from the State left with him as the other had, and expecteth when I shall receive order to treat with him about those matters.
"If her Majesty do follow that intent to have the commissioners to come over to her, I think it be the honourablest way for her, and will take away one thing that the Spanish ambassador serveth his turn badly of; giving [out] that her Majesty seeketh upon his master by all means, and confirmeth them in an opinion here that if we could have their friendship, we would little care for theirs here; which her sending to the Prince of Parma, being but the King of Spain's lieutenant, she being a great Queen, doth give him colour unto; with the help of them that are badly affected here, that are glad of any colour or show to persuade harm.
"To the other points of your lordship's letters, I will answer by the next."—Paris, 23 January, 1587.
Holograph. Add. Endd. by Burghley. 1 p. [France XVIII. 11.]
Jan. 23. Stafford to Walsingham.
"Even now is come confirmation from Geneva of the death of the Duke of Bouillon, and those letters that were written hither of the 13th, of hope of him, was but because they would have it spread of hope, that they might keep it secret awhile, till there might be leisure to send to Sedan, to give order for all things afore it were known. Monsieur Clervant is also dead, the poor gentleman; for the zeal to God's cause hath undone his posterity quite. He hath left himself in bond and debt ten thousand pounds more than he is worth. It is a pitiful case.
"It may be you may hear that La Noue is gone to Sedan; there was that determination. His presence may keep things in some good terms. I hear the young Duke hath made a will. What it is yet I know not, but I think by the next I shall be able to send you word.
"There will be marvellous broils, and great cunning to hear at those two places of Sedan and Jametz. Pinard, who hath married his son to Count Maulevrier's daughter, bestirreth himself for the Count Maulevrier; but yet the King hath stayed his going this day, and hath but sent thither. He hath sent to offer them the Carte blanche, and all his children in hostage for the performance of it; and the King seemeth to further him, but I do think he meaneth it not."—Paris, 23 January, 1587.
Postscript. "I received e'en now your packet by M. Fontayne's son, and am most sorry for your sickness, and pray to God with all my heart to send you health." I beg that the enclosed letter may be sent to the Lord Admiral (though he be at sea) for so he wished.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [France XVIII. 12.]
Jan. 23. Du Plessis-Mornay to Buzenval.
Nous fismes ung ample despesche de Nerac, venans en ce lieu de Montauban, des causes de la dissipation de l'armée estrangere. Nous en sommes encor mieulx esclarcys depuis, tant par lettres de M. de Guittrey que par l'arrivée de M. de Montloue, qui fut hier en peu de Metz. On avoit capitulé pour 9000 Reistres. Nous n'en avons eu jamais que 4000. M. le Due Cazimir avoit tousjours donné espoir de marcher en personne. Au partir il bailla la conduite de l'armée au Baron de Donne [Dohna], l'un de ses domestiques. Ils avoient commandement de passer la riviere de Loyre pour venir a nous; et pour cest effect, suivre le hault de ladit Riviere. Ils en sont sommez sur le bort [bord]; on leur monstre ung gay [qy. quai] ayse, large, et non desfendu. Ils refusent, et declarent par la bouche de La Heugrye vouloir faire de la en avant; prenent le bas sans espoir de 'gay' pour batteau ny passage pour venir a nous, ou nous a eux; et sans nous en advertir de la. Et partant confessent tous qu'il nous estoit impossible de les joindre. Et n'ont aujourdhui aultre remors en ce retirant que d'avoir suivi mauvais conseil, et avoir faict ce tort au Roy de Navarre et a ses affaires de ce perdre. Nottez que lors de la victoire de Coutras qui fut le 20 d'Octobre, ils estoient desja vers Montargis, et premier que nous eussions peu aller a eux, ils estoient ja en Beausse; ou se separerent les Suisses. Que l'armee du Roy a tousjours depuis qu'ils eurent refusé le 'gay', costoye le bort de deça Loyre, pour nous combattre, plus forte que nous ne pouvions estre, mais beaucoup plus foible qu' eux. Que deslors qu'ils commencerent, par l'affoiblissement a eux survenu par la retraicte des Suisses, a remonster la Riviere, le roy s'alla loger sur la riviere d'Allier, pour nos empescher de les joindre. Au reste, ils ont esté battuz et defaictez a Auneau faulte de garde, advertis d'en faire et mesmes d'en partir, et n'en tenant compte, les lansquenets et l'artillery prise faulte de laisser troupe derriere, et par moings de vingts chevaulx, ont composé lors que nonobstant tout cela ils estoient hors de tout danger, et que l'armée du Roy ne pouvoit plus subsister. Quand je considere tout cela, je dis que Dieu a voulu estre glorifie en nostre petit nombre, et non en ceste multitude qui eust rabatu et de nostre foy et de sa gloire. Je dis qu'il a converti nos fautes en sa gloire, et tous ceulx qui en reviennent louent Dieu de ce que le roi de Navarre ne si est point trouvé, comme d'aultre part nous plaignons fort M. Le Prince de Conty, que ait eu si mauvaise curée. Monsieur de Bouillon s'est retiré sans s'obliger; M. de Clervant, M. de Guittry et Monloue aussi, et plusieurs aultres tous prests a revolter les Reistres mesmes, et surtout Bouck d'avoir raison de la composition qui leur e esté si mal tenue. M. de Chastillon particulierement et M. de Mouy ont beaucoup d'honneur a leur faict, qui, sans estre participans de la composition, ont percé les montagnes de Vivarestz, ayant combatu deulx fois en chemin, et sont saincts et saufs arrivés en Languedoc.
"Le roy ne pence pas moings triompher de ceulx de la Ligue que de nous, pretendant par cest exploit avoir ensevely leur gloire, et de faict les Ligueurs en sont plus abattus que nous, qui sommes de long temps faicts a soubstenir les efforts des hommes, et ne pensons pas quils nous puissent beaucoup nuire.
"Voila pour ce qui concerne l'inconvenient advenu a nostres en armes. Maintenant selon les nouvelles que nous avons d'Allemagne, la negotiation d'Angleterre faicte par M. Junius viendra fort a propos pour l'ayde de la seconde levee, d'aultant que M. de Segur nous mande que le roy de Dannemarck s'est eslargy jusques a la somme de cent mil daldres; et que les aultres princes augmenteront aussi leur contribution. Ceste negotiation doibt estre suivie et fomentee, car je crains que le desastre qui est eschcu en l'armee estrangere ne les refroydisse encor qu'il les deubt reschauffer, et pour ceste effect nous ferons passer tost apres ceste-ci quelque personnage de qualité en Angleterre qui aura charge de passer tost apres de la en Allemagne, oultre ce que nous avons desja despeche en Suisse et en Allemagne le Sieur de Reaulx, tant pour justifier nos actions, nous plaindre d'avoir este mal serviz (sans offenser toutesfois ceulx qui nous peuvent ayder) que pour renouer et acheminer par tous moyens une segonde levee, attendant laquelle j'espere que Dieu nous fera la grace de tenir la barcque droitte. Car ce prince ne fut jamais si resolu, ni nos esglises plus disposees a faire leur devoir; nos partisans plus preparez contre l'adversite. Mesmes nous aurons en peu de jours de bons moyens pour redresser les affaires mieux qu'elles n'ont este depuis le commencement de ceste guerre, comme vous dira plus particulierement celuy qui sera envoyé vers la Reyne dans quatre jours. Aussi M. de Montmorency se trouvera ycy, lequel est aussi constant qu'on peult desirer. Il y a eu quelques petites pratiques desquelles on nous a voulu faire umbrage, mais il ne fera rien, de quelque part que ce soit, sans le gre et adveu de Messieurs les Ligueurs, [qui?] desireroient bien de n'estre point si avant en querelle avec nous qu'ilz sont.". Montauban, ce 23 de Janvier.
Endd. by Walsingham's clerk 23 January 1587. Copy of Monsieur du Plessis' letter to Monsieur Buzenval." 1½ closely written pp. [France XVIII., 13.]
[As this is an interesting and important letter, it is printed verbatim.]
Jan. 23./Feb. 2. Occurrences out of Spain.
That there are preparing forty-five ships, but only meanly furnished, both with ordnance and soldiers. That they stand in great fear of Sir Fra. Drake upon the discovery of any ships upon that coast.
That for lack of slaves, they are not able to put four galleys to sea. Coin very dear. No soldiers levied.
The wines that come from the 'Sheres' [Xeres] are to pass by Cales [Cadiz].
They of Cales have conveyed their goods to 'Syvall' [Seville.]
That the King of Spain should be sick Doubt in Spain of revolt. A general desire of peace with England. In Walsingham's hand. Endd. as in headline. 1 p. [News-letters XC., 38.]
Jan. 24. Frederick, King of Denmark to the Queen.
The substance of this letter is given below.
Dated at Iladersleben. Signed. Endd: "a ship laden with fish belonging to the Captain of Iceland and other his subjects spoiled at seas by one Wikes and Wood. Latin, 2½ pp. [Denmark I. 104.] Below the endorsement is written.
Order to the Judge of the Admiralty to certify what has been done for the satisfaction of the proprietors.
"The substance of the King of Denmark's letter to her Majesty, 24 January, 1588."
That a ship belonging to certain citizens of Breame, laden with Iceland fish, whereof some part belonged to his subjects and the governor of Iceland, was, in their return, "spoiled by Captains Wickes and Wodde, English men of war; who being not content with the ship and lading, took away also from the mariners their victuals and apparel, and so most uncourteously set them naked ashore, upon the coast of Ireland."
That when they showed the King's passport and safe conduct, the Englishmen rent it in pieces, saying that if the goods belonged to the King himself, "they would make no account thereof, but would do as they listed."
That the King at the suit of the Senate of Breame, has acquainted her Majesty with this outrage, "and recommended to her favour the bearer, John Hyndman, partner and factor for the merchants that are spoiled.
"That he understandeth that the most part of the goods were sold by the said pirates at Westchester, and that the ship is at the Isle of Man."
That daily complaints are made to him of the insolency and cruelty of the English pirates.
That her Majesty hath both by her letters and ambassadors given him hope that an end may be made of these spoils; and the sea left safe and free for his subjects; yet he sees no fruit thereof, and the number of spoils daily increase; whose impudency is grown so great "that they make but a scoff and a sport of him and his name, and are not afraid to use threatenings to his own ships and goods," which kind of dealing deeply touches his honour and reputation.
He prays that satisfaction may be made to these men of Breame, and that her Majesty will take order for restraining and punishment of the offenders; otherwise these dealings will "shake away from him" the favour he has hitherto shown to her subjects, and necessity may force him to use his own means for revenge of these outrages.
In Rogers' hand. Endd. 1½ pp. [Denmark I. 105.]
Jan. 25./Feb. 4. The King of Navarre to the Queen.
Madame, vous ayant cydevant escript en faveur de quelques marchands qui avoyent convenu avec Messieurs les maire & eschevins de la Rochelle pour du canon, des pouldres, & aultres choses necessaires a la conservation des villes et places qui servent de retraicte aux pauvres exilez pour la Religion: il s'est encores presenté auxdits de la Rochelle, ainsy qu'ilz m'ont escript, un honeste personage de vos subgectz nommé Jehan Quintingal de Tortenez [Totnes] avec lequel ils ont faict priz pour certaine quantité de pouldres, salpetres, beurres & aultres vivres & munitions de Guerre, qu'il a promis d' amener en ladict ville dans peu de temps s'il plaist a vostre Majesté le luy permectre. Je la supplie donq tres humblement, Madame, d'aultant que pour disposer & fournir en divers lieux nous n'avons ville plus commode a faire provision & magazin de toutes choses que la Rochelle, voulloir permectre audict Quintingal de tirer hors de voz Royaulme, terres & seigneuries, & embarquer en vos portes & havres ladicte quantité de pouldres, salpetres, beurres & aultres choses susdictes, avec bon & ample passeport, pour d'aultant plus obliger les habitans d'icelle ville, ceulx de nos eglises refugiez, and moy particulierement, a vous rendre a jamais le service que vous doibt, Madame, Celluy qui baise en toute humilité voz mains & qui est,
[In the King's own hand] Vre treshumble & tresobeyssant frere & servyteur, Henry.
Montauban, ce iiiic. de Febvrier, 1588.
Add. Endd. with note: "Desireth that the town of Rochelle may be supplied of certain things whereof they stand in need, viz.:—Ordnance, powder, saltpeter, wheat, rye, pease, oats & beer." 1 p. [France XVIII. 14.]
Jan. 26. Frederick, King of Denmark, to the Queen.
Writes at the request of his sister, Dorothea, Duchess of Brunswick & Luneburg, on behalf of Johan de Horn, one of her subjects, who is owed 200l. sterling by Henry Allington, a merchant of London, which was to be paid to him at Embden within two months, but which he has not yet received. Prays that the money may be paid with interest and expences.— Hadersleben, 26 January, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. Latin, 2 pp. [Denmark I. 106.]
Jan. 27./Feb. 6. Du Plessis to Walsingham.
Recommending M. du Fay, one of the King of Navarre's privy counsellors, whom his Majesty is sending to the Queen for reasons which may be better learned from himself. He is a loyal and worthy personage, to whom his honour can speak in confidence.
The King was never more resolute, and if God has confirmed his vocation in defence of his church by so notable a victory, he has not the less testified thereto by the constancy which he has given him in the disgrace which he has received by the faults of others. And so it is that he who desired to be glorified in our weakness has chosen to confound our strength, that neither our faith nor his own glory may be abated.
We are greatly indebted to you for what you have done hitherto. Act so that we may owe all to you. And do not impute to us (who suffer most deeply therefrom) the ill management of others. For what could we do more to join with the strangers than hazard all our affairs in a single hour? And who could arrive in time when at that very time the Swiss were determining to separate from us? Private counsels ruined the army, where ours would certainly have saved it. And the misfortune is, that an army which came hither for us, should follow its own counsels and not ours, who know better than they what can be done. Our patience will bring about new succour, if it please God; at least I see no one here, who has not armed himself afresh with virtue and courage against all efforts. You also will have abated nothing, but rather, I believe, increased your affection, which in all generous hearts must be doubled in adversity.—Montauban, 6 February, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. French. 1 p. Seal of arms. [France XVIII 15.]
Jan. 27. Sir Horatio Palavicino (fn. 5) to Burghley.
At this conclusion of the business with Duke Casimir, I have desired more than ever to have letters from your Excellency, Mr. Secretary and Mr. Stafford; but I conceive that your grave affairs have hindered you, and the Secretary also, who has not written since the 16th of November, except once, and then without anything definite; and my last from Mr. Stafford was of the 12th of December. Thus I have found myself very bare of advertisements from outside, and have had to follow the thread of the negotiation as well as its extreme difficulty would allow me; as you will have seen by mine of December 30, and the 8th and 15th of this present. And finally I have concluded it, and executed it in the manner of which I am particularly informing the Secretary and her Majesty. In which action, I pray God that as I have desired to be most diligent, so I may have pleased and served her Majesty as I intended, and that the result may be so useful to her that its memory will be pleasing for a long time to come. The matter is left satisfactorily enough with Casimir, who, if he will honourably fulfil his obligations cannot draw back without satisfying her Majesty. Nor can the King of Navarre legitimately, for his part, make peace, or do anything else which might hinder the effect of it: or Segur and Guitry use any collusion with Casimir without its appearing, to their continual reproach; so that my mind is pretty well at rest, albeit that the tristitia (fn. 6) of Casimir's people has often made me doubtful of every thing.
Now I have finished, and am very wishful to return home, wherefore I am sending a servant express, and beg Mr. Secretary to write to me as soon as possible if her Majesty will have me return or still remain here, and I will govern myself accordingly; but I do not see that my own presence is necessary or that another, less well known, may not as well or better come here and, in my place, follow the army if desired. I pray your Excellency that if this can be done without prejudice to her Majesty's service, I may have the satisfaction of returning, but if not, I will remain here and do all that I may be commanded, praying, in this and in any other case, to be favoured with your orders.
Signed. Add. Endd. Italian. 1¼ p. [German States V. 69.] [Under the address is written "Copy" but this means duplicate.]
Jan. 28. Stafford to Walsingham.
"There hath been here a great 'horlybourly' upon Friday at dinner. Gondi had bidden M. d'Epernon to dinner and the Pope's nuncio. The Queen Mother, as her custom is every Friday to come to the Sainte Chapelle, sent her officers to Gondi's house to make ready her dinner there, which they did, and Gondi told them who dined there; which one of her gentlemen went presently back to the Sainte Chapelle to tell her that. She sent him back again to Gondi to bid him from her to see he made his guests fare well, for she would be one of the company. M. d'Epernon, hearing of this, sent to Gondi to desire him to excuse him, even as the dinner was ready, and told one of his familiars that if he knew what an advertisement he had, that he would bless him, and said no more. The Queen Mother, hearing this refusal to come, she being there, stomached it marvellously. M. d'Epernon in the afternoon meant to go to the fair, and desired a good number of gentlemen to accompany him, and under their cassocks to wear a cuirass every man; and as he was going up to horseback, he had an advertisement brought him that made him stay and shut his gates, and come not out till yesterday in the morning, that the King came betimes hither to the town, as soon as ever he heard of it. Since, all his friends go continually about the town booted, spurred and well horsed.
"It was reported that M. d'Aumale was secretly in this town, and that it was discovered that in a house in the Faubourg St. Germain there were that day twenty Spanish horses saddled all the day, and that nobody knew whose they were.
"For my part, I think they be all but tales, and that it [is] a cunning bruit and an advertisement made to be given him, expressly to make him stand in a fear of himself; and so either not to go into Normandy for fear of some treachery, or else, if he went, to make him to carry those troups for his guard, that both the towns and the country may stand in a jealousy of him, thinking that that would breed some stir there.
"His journey thither, which should have begun tomorrow is deferred for some three or four days, and I think it will be deferred longer. In the meantime, here is great stir of his part, and great vows both to defend and offend if he be moved. The King hath made an open protestation that if any harm come to him, he will never forgive them that are the doers or the causers of it. He carrieth himself too stately to get the goodwills of the French humours to be beloved but only in respect of his favour with the King, which I am sorry for.
"There was a determination but no resolution here to have had M. de Bellievre have gone to the Duke of Guise, to have persuaded him and his brother both to have come hither, to have counselled both about the war making this summer against the King of Navarre, as also that they are here in some jealousy that the Prince of Parma meaneth to set upon Cambray, because presently he hath commanded six hundred horses of artillery to be in a readiness, which they say here cannot be to attempt anything against England, and therefore presupposeth it is for that; and that he is sure that if that be, they will put all their helping hands to the defence of it for the affection they do bear to this realm. But since, that resolution for M. Bellievre's going is changed into M. de Rieux, and that may change too, afore he go. But that they will both come, nobody believeth it, nor many that any one of them will come. It is given out that the King will make M. d'Epernon and them friends, but they that do look well into it do think it neither meant nor feasible.
"It is here thought certainly that M. de la Noue is in Sedan already, which a great many stomach, and the King doth show not to be contented with it. The King is determined to send young Arson (fn. 7) thither, son to him that commandeth in the town by M. de Bouillon's appointment when he went away. The young man carried the cornet general in this army under the Duke of Bouillon, and with the rest signed the composition, and I think hath looked of a mass [sic]. The King determineth to give him three hundred men, such as he will levy, which I think the young man meaneth shall be most of them that are in the town already or else affected that way, and the King will pay them.
"There will be somewhat to do about this [Duke's] will, whereof M. dela Noue, as I hear, is made an administrator, for the Count Maulevrier pretendeth as heir male to the two places which are sovereignties; and Pinard, whose son hath married his eldest daughter by his first wife doth stand hotly for him, which I am afraid will breed harm, for Pinard, where he hath particular interest, is somewhat slack in looking to the danger of a public harm; but it is hoped his friends may persuade him not to deal too much in it, both in respect of the public cause, but chiefly in respect of himself; for they mean to lay before him that he will hazard to purchase himself great enemies for a thing which he neither can bring to pass, nor if he could, he could get no commodity by the other's having it; for if the Count Maulevrier had it as heir male, his daughter (whom his son hath married) could have no interest at all in it; for if daughters might pretend it, it were more reason that Duke Bouillon's daughter should have it than Count Maulevrier's; which reason, as I think, will be of greatest weight with him; for as I hear, the young Duke hath confirmed his father's will; save only that where his father gave the two places of Sedan and Jametz unto the Duke Montpensier, if both his sons died, this man hath first given it [his] sister, and then Duke Montpensier, if she die without children; and in the mean time, the tutell of heer to Duke Montpensier; who, is thought, will embrace the matter earnestly and marry her to his son.
"But there will be garboils about it, for as I hear (but I do not know yet the will perfectly), he hath left a chief trust in his will to the King of Navarre and Duke 'Cazymyr'. . . ."— Paris, 28 January, 1587.
Postscript. "They give out here for a certainty that the Count Mongomery is also dead. I pray God to hold his hard hand from over us. I am afraid he is offended for some secret cause."
Holograph. Add. Endd. 2¾ pp. [France XVIII. 16.]
Jan. Stafford to Walsingham.
"Since the putting up of the packet, I had an advertisement sent me whereof I send you an extract, as also two lines under it of an answer of one that I sent to a very friend of mine to know what was the truth of it. I do not know what the meaning should be to send to the Prince of Parma, and I would not stay this bearer any longer . . . and therefore I leave it till my next. I cannot devise wherefore it should be, if it be not that they have some advertisement or suspicion that this levying of so many horses of artillery by the Prince of Parma . . . is to attempt somewhat against that place of Sedan or Jametz; but for my part, I do rather think it is for Bonn than for any place else; for, as I hear, that sticketh much in his stomach and the Bishop [of] 'Leege' presseth him marvellously to it.
"They cried a book yesterday here of the defeat of a great many of our ships of the 22nd January last (fn. 8) by the Prince of Parma's forces, and that Hawkins did command them as Admiral; and that Sir Francis Drake was driven back again upon the coast of England, being gone out towards Spain, with the loss of a good number of ships. Everybody here knoweth it to be false and laugh at it; but yet it maketh a noise in the street, even as another they made here a fortnight agone of the war declared between her Majesty and the King of Scots, and the surprising of 'Barwyk' by the Scots and the keeping of it; which I sent to Pinard, to complain of. He told the King of it, who com- manded presently it should be seized, but for the punishment, showed him things printed wherein himself was touched, which he could not publish none; so I look for the same answer now. I sent even now to Pinard the book himself [sic], and withal [said] I knew not upon what great amity should serve for the proclamation of the King of Spain's trophies, being not true, as he knew this was false. And if they were true, that I did not know that France had any great cause to rejoice at it, but might be they that might first smart for it; and desired him to tell the King so; and that there had been so often complaints made by me of those things without punishment as I was weary of complaining, and therefore I left it to their discretion; but one thing I could assure him: that her Majesty would suffer in her realm no triumphs in jest against the King by lying; nor rejoice in earnest if any mishap came to him; and that whosoever did either of both, at the least they should stand on the pillory, and the whip walk about their shoulders. I do not think anything will be done to them, for of their own country they do every day cry new lies that were never thought of nor done." Undated.
Add. Endd. "January 1587," by one of Walsingham's clerks. 1 p. [France XVIII. 17.]


  • 1. i.e. Montaigne. See letter of Feb. 10, below.
  • 2. François de Montesquieu, Seigneur de Ste. Colombe, Baron de Faget, councillor and captain of the K. of Navarre.
  • 3. Surprised by Martin Schenk in Dec. 1587.
  • 4. In this month, Giovanni Dolfin was succeeded by Giovanni Mocenigo.
  • 5. Knighted by the Queen on Nov. 11, 1587.
  • 6. Tristizia, roguery.
  • 7. Mentioned, but without any particulars, by de Thou (t. 4, p 272). Not in Lettres Missives or by d'Aubigny or La Huguerye.
  • 8. If this was English style, the letter must have been written rather later; but in any case the reports were quite unfounded.