Elizabeth: May 1588, 21-31

Pages 624-637

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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May 1588, 21-31

May 24. Stafford to Walsingham.
The only news from Spain confirms that on May 13, their account, the 'army' was not come out of Lisbon, but would do so in four or five days, though some think it will be "above a week in June" before it does so. Those here, affected that way, give out, by many advertisements ("which they make come as they list to feed the world withal") that it is already landed, some in Scotland some in England, and that we are all undone; and sent such certain word where the King was, that all wondered at it, but I assured them of the contrary. "I would to God I had as often news now from you, as might for their 'artificious' bruits here serve their turns . . . Without advertisement I help what I can, but I would be glad that I might help it with a truth, to continue an opinion that they have conceived of me, that I tell them no lies, and by that means they believe me, whereas whatsoever cometh from the Spanish ambassador is suspicious, and of no credit with them. . . .
"There hath been here more hope of accord than there is now . . . I am afraid they are near upon a point to break, yet still there is going up and down; the King's physician, Miron, having been here twice within these three days, up and down between the King and the Queen Mother. The King standeth upon three points which I think we do not here desire: the avoiding of the town of them that are in it that are the causers of the harm," that he may return to it, and, as he promised, forgive it all things, bringing with him only his accustomed guards; "the other, that the States be kept, which he propounded the last day by the procuror-general, when he revoked the edicts which I send you, where he promiseth to hold all that is agreed upon there, both for state and religion, and to name them a successor of his blood, Catholic. The third is that to have the States kept with that liberty as is required; every body of all sides [to] disarm themselves. Which of these three be the uneasiest to agree unto by them that are here now rulers, I promise you I cannot tell; but I think never a one of them all but is a bitter pill, and will hardly be swallowed but by force; therefore I do look rather for a great extremity than any hope of agreement; though here things be seen to change so often and so suddenly that sometimes things be done that be both unlooked for and unlikely, and upon a sudden."
The King has left Chartres and on Wednesday night arrived at Nantes. Even as he reached it, "they of the League having intelligence within Meulane, three leagues off, surprised it and have disarmed all the burgesses.
"They of St. Clou being spoken fair by the King as he passed, and requested to let nobody seize of their 'brigge,' have refused it to the Duke of Guise and them of this town that sent thither, and having sent from hence some companies thither to surprise it, they have barricaded themselves, being but a village as you know, and have killed sixteen or seventeen of them; and the Duke of Guise, being in a choler, with that went to the Queen Mother, and told her if she make it not be rendered unto them, he would send the cannon, and beat it all to powder. She grew in choler too, and bid him take heed what he did, and told him that if he enterprised any one thing more than he had done, that she would herself go to the court of parliament and make a declaration against him that should little like him. He finding her change her courage, and upon the physician's [Miron's] coming, who arrived not past two hours afore, was suddenly struck in a dump withal and went his ways, y[et] the world might see it in his face greatly troubled.
"There is nobody here can know what Miron hath brought to the Queen Mother, and if it be not by her means, it is not possible to know it by him. Some say that he hath brought her an ample commission to treat an accord, but they also say that it is limited with the three conditions above named.
"M. d'Epernon went from the court the day that the King parted from Chartres, with more grace of the King and favour of all men there than ever he had, greatly accompanied; and is gone to Loches, and so into Poitou and Angoulesme, where also he is governor; and made, as is sent me word, lieutenantgeneral in Poitou. I think if the King agree with this town, he shall keep himself away for a time, because he is very odious unto them; but if he do not, I think he is to gather all the forces in those parts together, and to come with a great strength to the King again. His dignities that he gave up into the King's hand the King keepeth still in his hands, and speaketh of giving of none of them away, but only of the government of Normandy to Monsieur 'Mompensier' and that is yet but in words, though Epernon himself desired the King to do it. He had a great mischance here the day before yesterday (they say betrayed by one of his own folks). The King had sent for stuff of his, both plate and other things and jewels, under the name of his stuff; and writ to the Queen Mother that her mules might bring them him, which she did. At the gate they were all stayed, and brought back to the town-house, where the chests were broken open, and all things taken out, I hear of certainty to the value of forty thousand crowns and more . . .
"Lavardin arrived in post to the King the day he went from Chartres. The King sent him presently back to hasten his troops that were not far off; which are seven thousand footmen and five hundred horse. The Prince 'Cowntie' [Conti] came to the King, who received him marvellously well, and is returned to his house to prepare himself."—Paris, 24 May, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 3 closely written pp. [France XVIII. 97.]
May 24. "A note of sundry persons that have been comprehended in treaties between the Kings of England and other Princes."
1510. In the treaty with the French King, concluded ex parte the King of England; the Duke of Gueldres and Juliers; the Community of Florence, and the Society of the Teutonic Hanses.
1513. Between the Same. Concluded on the part of the King of England by the lord de Medici; the Duke of Urbino; the Duke of Ferrara; Antonio, Dominus de Ligny. And on the part of the King of France by the Governor of Liege; the Marquises of Mantua, Montferrat and Saluces and the lord of Sedan, who was an ancestor of the Duchess of Bouillon.
1515. Between the same. On the part of the King of England by Antonio, lord of Ligny; and of the King of France by the Lord of Sedan.
1526. Treaty of Madrill [Madrid] between the Emperor and the French King. Special articles for private persons, as for Philibert, Prince of Orange; Philip [de Croy], Marquis of Arschott; the Princess of Chimay; [Henry] Count of Nassau; Seigneurs de Beure; de la Chaux; de Lussa; Marquis de Saluces.
1529. Treaty of Cambray. Amongst others, there be special articles for:
Robert de la Marche [Marck] and his sons;
The heirs and followers of Charles, Duke of 'Burbon'; the Count of Pontievre; the Prince of Orange; the Duchess [Dowager] of Vendosme; the Count of Gavres and Philippe de Croy, Marquis d'Aerschott.
1559. Treaty of Cambresis (fn. 1). Special articles for:—The Prince of Orange; Count of Egmont; Duke of Arscot; Maison de Vergy; Seigneurs de Blayon [i.e. Glaion] and de la Trolliere, Baron Bolviler [or Polviller]; Duchess of Valentinois [Diane de Poictiers]; General d'Elbene; Count Scipion di Fiesa; Ottavian Fregoso.
"There was at this time also a special treaty for the Duke of Bouillon to deliver up Bouillon to the Bishop of Liege, from [whom] it was in the wars taken; but to retain the title and dignity.
In this same treaty were comprehended:
On the part of the King of France:—
Divers princes of Germany; Countess of Friesland; Cardinal of Ferrara; Don Francesco 'd'Este; Seigneur Ludovico Gonzaga now Duke of Nevers; Count de la Mirandola; Count di Peteliano; Seigneur Jordan Ursin; Camillo and Paolo Ursini; Cardinal Strozzi; Philip and Robert Strossi; Cornelio Bentevoglio; Adreano Borghini.
On the part of the King of Spain:—
Duke of Parma; Cardinal 'Ferneze'; Cardinals of Santa Fiore, Carpi and Perugia; Marc Antonio Colonna; Paul Jordan Ursini; Signor di Piumbino.
"So for the house of Bouillon be three or four precedents wherein they be named.
"For the Princess of Chimay by name once.
"For as mean men as the Prince of Espinoy four or five.
"In the ancient treaties between England and France, and between France and Burgundy, there were many clauses and reservations pro adherentibus; who particularly had letters of abolition and remission etc., and likewise of restitution etc."
Endd. as in headline, and with date. 3 pp. [France XVIII. 98.]
May 25./June 4. M. de Laubespine-Chasteauneuf to Walsingham.
Is obliged to trouble him once more for Signor Antonio da Vega, whose affairs cannot be dispatched unless his honour orders the Judge of the Admiralty to pass sentence, which he so greatly delays doing. The said Signor da Vega has put the matter into the hands of M. 'Bournan,' [Edward Burnham] who is, as he has heard, shortly to go over into Zeeland. Prays him to direct the dispatch of the business before Mr. Bournan's departure, as in his absence, it will be very difficult for Signor da Vega to obtain satisfaction.—London, 4 June, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. French, ½ p. [France XVIII. 99.]
May 29. Stafford to Burghley.
"The not returning of Lile [i.e. Lilly] maketh that 1 am fain to send Haklit, not being possible that Lile being absent I can let Grimston go at this time. If lack of experience maketh that he cannot deliver so wellmatter of so great weight, necessity hath no law. I have taken his oath upon a book for secrecy; for his honesty I will answer.
"In truth, my lord, I must needs make my moan to you both of the proof of it and of that which Mr. Bodley told Grimston, that her Majesty in great choler should tell him of Lilye's ar rival, and should say that he had a shrewd tongue and a shrewd head; that they two met together were dangerous; that he looked to be sent back presently, but that she would keep him fast enough. I would be loth Mr. Bodley should hear of this to have any anger, for first I love to hurt nobody, and he is my very friend, but surely, my lord, I must needs tell you plainly, as my honourable good friend, to whom only and to Mr. Secretary I have written of it, that in respect that I have served her Majesty both faithfully and painfully, (I will not add, dangerously and chargeably), I had not deserved such an affront as her Majesty's open, hard speeches of one that I had sent to her at this time; and as little the hindrance of my means to serve by retaining him that might stand me now in such stead; being a thing certain that a new-comer neither can serve nor men will deal with them and be in this time acquainted with new folks.
"Truly, my lord, if he had deserved evil (as I protest before God I do not believe it and further can testify that at this time he hath deserved most well) in the respect of the necessity of the cause of my sending on [i.e. of] him at this time, it might have been let alone till another time. Truly, my lord, I must think myself an unhappy man, to deserve no better, considering how my conscience giveth me [testimony] that I have deserved well; for truly my lord, I have [more] of a mind to be contented with good usage simply, than with a great deal of reward without it. An honest man's mind can never be drawn a jot from his duty, and I am of so certain and good opinion of myself that an honester and a faithfuler mind nobody neither hath nor shall carry; but the honestest man's heart in the world may be killed, and his wits appalled, and his senses daunted with unkindness. We are in a time where men's spirits had more need to be quickened than abated, and where servants, when they do well, had more need to be encouraged to do better than discouraged when they do well.
"I write this plainly to your lordship as to my honourable good friend, beseeching you to use it as you shall see cause, but especially that her Majesty may not in knowing it, be offended with Mr. Bodley, my very good, ancient friend.—Paris, 29 May, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. by Burghley. 2 pp. [France XVIII. 100.]
Probably enclosed in the above, the following passage in cipher:
"Pinart is the man that hath delivered unto me that matter of weight that Haklit shall deliver to you, though he know not who it is, but only a friend of one near the French King, that sent it me from the court; for fear lest he should suspect any thing, for he knoweth Pinart is here." Ibid. 100a.
[Deciphered, but not quite correctly, and the symbol for Pinart left untranslated, probably by design.]
May 29. Advertisements from Paris.
"That my lord [Stafford] had advertisement from a special friend of his, a man of quality, continually about the King since his departure from Paris that all the cunning in the world hath been used to bring the King to yield to three points:—
"To the abandoning of the league with the Queen of England; to forsake the protection of Geneva and that of Sedan:
"The strangers that chiefly urged the same were the Pope's nuncio, the Spanish ambassador fomenting the same as much as was possible. The nuncio, the rather to persuade the King to the three former points, assured him that they being granted, his Holiness would bring the Princes of the League to any reasonable conditions he would desire and that nothing could be more for his reputation, and to cut off all the cunning cavillations of the League against the King, whereby they charged him that he favoured the King of Navarre, and showed himself not so hot against heritics as he made show for.
"That his friend considering the King's weakness and the division of his counsellors about him, whereof part were weak and part Leaguish, he feared lest the weak being interested by the civil tumults in their goods and persons, might be drawn in the end to incline to the Leaguish [party] especially in a matter that concerned not the King's own state at home, not foreseeing, as the wiser sort did, that after they had consented to the depriving of the King of his chief friend and succourer, the Queen of England, the Leaguers would use him and them as they thought best.
"His friend thought the best way to strengthen the King was only to rely upon the ancient league and new alliance between the Queen and the French King; and according thereunto, to offer to furnish him with a certain number of men therein agreed upon; and if, by reason of their diversity of religion, it should not be thought good to receive such numbers of English succours, that then her Majesty would condescend to aid him with the like number of such as he should think best to serve himself of. And farther, if it should be thought that in respect of his present necessity he should not be able to wage them himself, that then the Queen should do well to wage them for five or six months if need required; which all, after 50000 crowns the month, would not come to past an hundred thousand pounds. He wished that in this offer, no invective should be used against the League, nor any mention made of the King of Navarre, but only to stand upon the performing of the conditions of the alliance between both the Princes for the restoring the King into his former estate again by this mean if by no other means it may be brought to pass.
"That by this offer, heart might be put into the King and into those of the weaker sort of his Council about him, when they should see their master backed by so mighty a prince.
"That hereby all colours would be taken away, and the false accusation of the Pope's Nuncio against the offer made unto the King on her Majesty's behalf by Mr. Bodley answered; which Nuncio said that she made this offer not for any love or good affection she bare unto him, but to maintain him and those of the League in pique together, and laugh them to scorn both in her sleeve, and that her chief drift was to set up the King of Navarre, whom she meant to extol. And that in seeming to offer to do him good, she did him more hurt in hazarding, by joining with her, the loss of those towns wherein the League had credit.
"That he was of opinion, if this course were thought good of, that it was needful to put it in execution with all speed. If the King refused or staggered at the accepting the offer, he thought it good my lord should make it known to divers of his Council one after another, whereby they of the weaker sort might be confirmed, and the Leaguers, by this proceeding, might have their mouths stopped. He wished also that in this negotiation, no mention at all should be made of or against Spain, and assured himself that if now we won the goal of them, all the storm in the end would light upon the Spaniard.
"That in his judgment, the King of Navarre took the best course for the present time in sending his strength unto the King, and standing himself strongly upon his guard in holds and looking on in safety.
"That Duke Espernon was sent into Guienne with an hundred commissions, and had commandment to refuse to receive none, of what religion soever they were, so they were not special men of mark.
"That the King himself refused none that came unto him of either of both the religions, nor spake any word unto them of their consciences, unless they ministered occasion themselves.
"My lord imagineth that though his foresaid friend protesteth he giveth this advice of good will, and as of himself, yet he may do it by commandment and order from the King underhand, and that if he had any such order to make this secret motion, my lord thinketh it were a good sign that the King is willing to accept her Majesty's aid in such sort as it may not be otherwise prejudicial unto him, and wisheth in any case that this good overture be not overslipped. On the other side, if this proceed of his friend's own motion, that it is a right good advice, and not to be neglected.
"If her Majesty's paying of the succours sent to the King cannot be accepted, then he thinketh it not amiss to lend the King, if he request it, some five or six months' pay after 50,000 crowns a month (which in all may amount to about an hundred thousand pound English) and to advance some two months' pay in hand, and that the King and his subjects may be bound to repay the same within reasonable limited time after her Majesty shall demand it."
Endd. by Burghley "29 May, 1588. Advertisement secretly brought from Sir Edward Stafford by Hackett."
In the hand of Stafford's secretary. 3¼ pp. [France XVIII. 101.]
[May 29?] Stafford to Walsingham.
Since this packet was made up, news is come that Marshal 'Memorancy' and they of the Religion have taken Pont St. Esprit; that Gap must needs soon render, and that Memorancy has blocked Narbonne very straightly.
Looks for Lilly this day or on the morrow; but if he has not departed, prays that he may be dispatched at once, having great need of him. [Undated.]
Holograph. Add. Endd. ½ p. [France XVIII. 102.]
May 29. "Advertisements from Paris."
"The Pope's nuncio hath been with the King to divert him from any correspondency with the Queen's Majesty or his protestant subjects, to strengthen himself against those of the League; but rather to advise him to unite himself with them against the heretics, as they term them.
"The King hath answered that he doubted their League tended not to the advancement of religion, but was grounded upon ambition and matter of State. And that he could be content to concur with them for the extirpation of heresy, so as they behaved themselves towards him as became subjects.
"The King hath thereupon sent Villeroy to his mother to Paris, to see how they will frame themselves, according to the offer of the Nuncio.
"The town of Paris is grown very desolate since the King's going away, and traffic ceaseth very much, so as the people begin to feel the smart of it, and to bethink themselves of their fault.
"They have made a proclamation without the Duke of Guise's privity, that all vagabond persons and soldiers shall avoid the town within twenty-four hours, upon pain of present execution.
The 'Prevost' of Paris, [de Perreuse], released from the Bastille by intercession of his friends, is again committed, upon an uproar of some of the people, set awork by the Duke of Guise, who took him forcibly from the house where he was ...
"This and many other things are thought to be done by practice of those of the League, to the end to make this town and the King irreconcilable.
Overleaf. Notes of Stafford's letter of June 2. [See under that date.] Endd. 2 pp. The first in Beale's handwriting; the second in that of Walsingham's clerk. [France XVIII. 103.]
May 29. Another copy of the above.
Endd. 1 p. [Newsletters IX. 42.]
May. M. Du Pin to Walsingham.
A gentleman has just arrived, bringing to our Master excuses from the Chevalier Williams, who would have been made very welcome by the King and all the good people here. For my part, after your account of him, I would have done him all the service possible. A word from you can do much, in this company. This Prince is admirably steadfast and magnanimous. In a few days he will go into the field, and I hope you will, ere long, see good results. The general Assembly of the churches is to be held very shortly, when they will do all that is in their power; but we need aid and favour, which being given, we doubt not but that you will see great progress in our affairs. The Prince's death has happened very unfortunately, and the horrible manner of it has greatly grieved this Prince and all his company. Justice is loudly demanded. We cannot find the page Belcastel, who was the chief instrument therein. We have fallen upon miserable times. God takes from us our chiefs and leaders, and chastens us severely; but he will shortly turn again his face towards us. Undated.
Holograph. 1 p. Add. Endd. "May 1588" by Walsingham's clerk. [France XVIII., 104.]
May. Memorial from the French Ambassador to Burghley.
Praying him, according to what was arranged at their meeting, to give order to Charles Harvard to appear before the Council on complaint of Jacques Partenay, a merchant of Brittany, of his having sent for sixty bales of cloth, taken from the said complainant at sea, going into Spain—to answer to the said complaint, and give satisfaction to Partenay, who has been ruined by the theft, seeing that the commission from the Judge of the Admiralty for this attendance of the said Harvard has never been executed.
Praying also for a reply upon the packet sent by M. de Stafford, pursuant to a complaint made to the Council of the French King by Guillaume Videcocq, captain of the Anne of the Havre de Grace, taken at sea by Captain Remond [Raymond], by which the complainant had received much damage, and had also lost an arm.
Also, upon the like complaint made by Thomas Nicole of Havre de Grace of the loss of a hoy, taken at sea by Captain Flaming [sic], of which the restitution had been promised.
Also, for satisfaction to Alexandre Very, factor of Jehan Belin, merchant of Rouen for a ship taken at sea by Captain la Roche, and carried, with its merchandise to Plymouth and Portsmouth (Perthemuth).
Also, upon complaint of Guillaume Adam, merchant of Dieppe, touching a cargo of herring, taken from him at sea by English and Scots men of war. One Benjamin Brouhet of Claye having confessed to selling a part thereof, the ambassador prays that he may be ordered to pay the money or be sent to prison.
Also, praying his lordship to write to the Bailiff of Germue [Yarmouth] to make restitution of a small ship called the Daniel la Barge, belonging to Roger Adam, taken while at the fishing, in August last, and sold to an inhabitant of the said Germue; seeing that the Bailly and "juges" [i.e. jurats] there have taken no notice of the commission obtained by the said Adam.
And to write to the Mayor of Plymouth, ordering him to restore a fishing boat belonging to Jehan Poilly of Tréport, taken in June last, returning from the fishing.
Endd. by Walsingham's clerk, "May, 1588." French, 3 pp. [France XVIII. 105.]
May. "A draft of Instructions for Sir Thomas Leighton."
Is to render her Majesty's hearty thanks for the King's "good acceptation" of her late sending to him, confirmed by his own letters, by the report of her servant lately sent, (fn. 2) (fn. 3) and by his Ambassador resident with her.
Is further to let him understand that, seeing the great indignities he has lately sustained, being forced to retire from Paris; the "Bastillion," his arsenal, being seized by the Duke of Guise; his treasure intercepted at the gates of his said town, and two principal places of strength in Normandy, 'Muland' [Melun] and 'Pounte l'Arche' surprised by the said Duke and his confederates, being both near to his place of abode; "she cannot but marvel that a prince of his greatness and quality should take so weak and strange a course as by a late declaration† set forth in his name appeareth; having by the same given the said Duke his wonted title of cousin, from whom he hath received all these indignities; whereas the world did look that he would . . . have declared him a traitor; with denunciation also to all the rest of his party and associates that in case—after these wrongs and indignities offered unto him, their prince and sovereign, they should persist in any sort to countenance or assist the said Duke, he would prosecute them also as traitors and rebels; with offer unto them, notwithstanding, that in case they should relinquish the late league and association, whereunto they were drawn by the said Duke's cunning dealing and abuse, under the colour of the maintenance of the Catholic religion, to make themselves parties and advancers of his ambitious designs:—he would then not only remit all things that were past, but also receive them into his grace and favour; ... which resolute and princely course would have dissolved their association and league, increased greatly his own party, caused the town of Paris (consisting of a weak-minded people), for recovery of his favour, either to have seized on the Duke's person or to have thrust him out of the town, and the two towns lately surprized would not have hazarded to receive the said Dukes' and confederates' forces. . . ." He should also have stayed those of his nobility who were with him and assembled his forces with all expedition.
Further; is to let him know "that as there is nothing more dangerous to a prince than to show himself dejected or weakminded in a broken fortune, so a great army could not so much comfort his party and abate the pride of his enemies as to make all outward show and demonstration rather to run any hazard or peril than in any dishonourable sort to give place to a subject that hath as much wounded his honour and reputation as the said Duke hath done."
And as she understands that his lack of resolution has proceeded chiefly on two advices given him:—The one to agree with the Duke for fear of the Duke of Parma's forces, and the other, in no sort to use the assistance of those of the Religion:—
For the first, those who look into the present state of the King of Spain see no reason to think that he can spare his forces out of the Low Countries to be employed against him [the French King]," especially if the King should declare the Duke a traitor, for neither the King of Spain or the Duke of Parma would commit so unprincely an action as to assist a rebel.
For the second, no Catholic that is not a member of the League will mislike the King using the assistance of those of the Religion, when forced thereto by the abuse of the other party; or if they did, he would be strong enough to take revenge both on the Duke and all his confederates; "for it cannot be but that a prince strengthened with both forces and authority (considering the reverence that by the goodness of Almighty God is bred in the hearts of subjects towards their prince for the preservation of States and kingdoms) shall easily suppress such disloyal subjects, whose ambitious minds cannot be contained within the lists of obedience, so as there be no way given unto them; and therefore . . . whosoever they be that shall advise him (the disease being now laid open) to put up his late indignity and to continue his temporizing course, will be the authors of his ruin, whatsoever show they make of fidelity, or how near soever they be tied in nature or affinity."
The consideration thereof has moved her, in respect of her good will to him and desire "that he should, in the present broken state of his affairs, carry himself with that princely magnanimity that appertaineth to one of his place and quality," to send him her best advice, and to protest that if he reject it, it is the last she means to give him; "whose former advice, if he had followed, he had not been reduced to that perplexed state that he is now fallen into." Leighton shall also show to the King, that as nothing can be more full of peril than in violent diseases to have weak-minded and fearful physicians, so it is also in diseases of states to have weak-minded counsellors, whereof she has cause to doubt "he hath had over dear experience; for if instead of drawing the Swisses into Paris, whereof the Duke made his profit in stirring the townsmen and burgers against them, as though the bringing in of the said Swissers had been with an intent to have committed the town to sack and spoil—he had seized on the said Duke's person, the indignities he hath since sustained had been avoided, and his realm restored to his former tranquillity and quietness," which being omitted gives the world cause to think that there was "disguising" between the Duke and him; which moveth divers of his subjects to hold out who would otherwise have declared against the Duke, which suspicion can only be removed by denouncing both him and his confederates if they persist to assist his traitors and rebels.
Lastly he is to be given to understand that she has given her envoy direction to stir up some of his counsellors to have a dutiful care of him, and to apply such remedies to his diseased state as the present danger requires, "and not to apply lenatives when corrosives are more apt for the cure of the disease"; but he must be shown that she would have nothing done save what he should allow and like of.
Having the King's approval, he [Leighton] is to address himself to the Duke of Montpensier, Marshal Biron, Villeroy, Pinard and Bellievre, to each of whom, besides the reasons above mentioned for her dislike of the unprincely course lately taken, shall be delivered "somewhat as followeth."
First: Montpensier is to be put in mind "that besides the danger of the King . . . his own particular ought to move him (for that if the house of Guise shall prevail, none of his race must look to stand) to stir up the King to take a more princely resolution, letting him know that the world doth look that he (being a prince of courage and of the blood . . .) should use a language fit for the present time both towards the King and his Council, for that it is no time now to wink or temporize."
Marshal Biron shall be told from her "that as the world hath always noted him to be a most faithful servant and a man of courage, so they do look . . . that he should advise his master to take a resolute course . . ."
To Villeroy, he shall say, that men of judgment, knowing him to be wise and faithfully devoted to the King his master, "did wonder to see the late declaration (which they conceive to have been set down by him, or at least by his advice) so weakly penned and so void of all magnanimity; for that—howsoever things have been carried before—it is no time now (after so many indignities received) to temporize, which doth no less encourage the enemy than appal the King's own party; and for that the world doth note that the King is directed chiefly by his advice, it will behove him for his own credit's sake, to frame his advice and counsel now according to the present diseased state of that realm, which . . . will not be cured but with a princely and resolute course.
Pinard is to be let understand from her that she is well assured "that if his advice and counsel were followed; the King would take a more princely course than he hath done," and to be prayed in her name to advise him [Leighton] "what speeches were best to be used both towards the King and the counsellors above-named, to draw both him and them to a more princely proceeding." It would be well to first send to him to procure audience and to desire to speak with him before repairing to the King, as she has directed her envoy to depend upon his advice, as one whom she knows to be a most faithful servant to his master, and one who greatly affects the maintenance of good amity between him and herself.
Lastly, he shall let Bellievre know "that all men that look into his wisdom and experience, being noted to be a chief and principal counsellor of that realm, and one that hath always showed himself most devoted to the King his master's service, and knowing so well as he doth do ambition and to what end it tendeth, cannot think that he should like (after so many indignities offered by the said Duke unto the King) that so base and dejected a course (as by a declaration lately set forth appeareth) should now be held; and therefore it is looked for that either by his grave counsel and earnest persuasions he shall draw the King to take a more princely course (considering that being a man hateful to the Duke and his faction, his proper standing dependeth thereon) or else to relinquish his service, thereby to avoid the ignominy that otherwise will befall unto him as a man culpable amongst the rest of his master's ruin, for lack of good advice and counsel."
Draft in the handwriting of Walsingham's clerk and much corrected by Walsingham himself. 17½ pp. [France XVIII. 106.]
On a separate sheet and in different handwriting:
"And whereas by the King's declaration lately set forth it appeareth that his intention is to prosecute with all vigour the matter of Religion; laying aside, as it seemeth the consideration that he ought to have, and the mind he should take upon him as a sovereign and prince of courage to punish with all severity such as have brought him to these indignities, who therefore are to be accounted no other than rebels; ye shall say unto him that in our opinion it were more for his honour and safety to take in hand, and that with speed, the punishment of such said offenders; and afterwards if needs he would continue that mind for the cause of Religion, then to proceed therein; for if now the supplanting of the Religion reformed should be brought to pass, the honour thereof would not be given to the King, but to those who have now thus behaved themselves rather as rebels than subjects; and so he should fail both for the glory of the matter of Religion, whereunto he so much pretendeth, and neglect also his own safety and honour by forbearing the punishment of such said offences and indignities.
1 p. The whole endorsed "Draft of Instructions for Sir Thos. Leighton knt. sent to the French King May 1588." [France XVIII. 106a.]
[1588, May.] The French King to the Queen of England.
Assuring her of his gratitude for the testimony of his goodwill, shown by her gracious letter, and by the personage she has been pleased to send to him, and declaring his desire to serve her whenever occasion shall offer. Undated.
Endd. "Copy of the French King's letter to her Majesty by Mr. Bodley." Fr. ½ p. [France XVIII. 107.]
[Bodley's first mission to France was in May 1588, a private mission at the time that Henry III. fled from Paris, from the Duke of Guise. For the Queen's letter, see p. 611, above.]
Document headed and endorsed "Instructions données a Monsieur de Guise quand il revienst en Cour apres les barricades de Paris, par l'Archevesque de Lyon." Also endorsed in English "Instructions given by B.L. to the Duke of Guise what course he should hold at his repair to Court."
French. 4½ pp. Two copies. [France XVIII. 108, 109.]
May. "Substance of the French King's answer to Mr. Bodley's message, May, 1588."
". . . That he found more kindness in his good sister the Queen of England than in all the Princes, his friends and allies besides, in that it pleased her to send so carefully and circumspectly to him in his troublesome state; which was no news unto him, for that her proceedings heretofore had always been such. And for his own part, he would endeavour to deserve it, with all manner of princely and brotherly correspondence. . . . He could never thank her sufficiently in that it pleased her to take part of his grief upon that accident of Paris, which was so great sometimes as it made the tears in his eyes. Howbeit, he was not the first King that had been so entreated in France, or elsewhere, and, for his own part, made no doubt but God would so assist him in his just cause as the shame of all in the end should fall upon themselves. And as for those particular offers of succour and help, which his good sister made unto him, he were to be accounted the most ungrateful man that liveth if he should not esteem them as singular courtesies. Nevertheless, a great number of his own good subjects, as well nobles as others had been with him, and offered their service with such ready good will and devotion as he made no doubt but with his own forces and power to be able sufficiently to chastise his enemies, and in the end, the world should perceive that he would not put up unrevenged so manifest indignities.
Endorsed, as in headline, by Walsingham's clerk. 1 p. [France XVIII. 110.]


  • 1. i.e. Le Cateau-Cambresis.
  • 2. Sir Thomas Bodley.
  • 3. Dated May [19-]29, at Chartres.