Elizabeth: April 1587, 21-30

Pages 27-46

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 21, Part 3, April-December 1587. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1929.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. All rights reserved.

Please subscribe to access the page scans

This volume has gold page scans.
Access these scans with a gold subscription.Key icon

April 1587, 21-30

As Mr. Aty, the bearer, knows all that has passed before and since my lord Buckhurst's arrival, I need not write thereof. From yours of March 23 I was glad to understand the continuance of your favour ; not that I doubted it, though to many of my letters I have received no answer. I thank you for dealing with her Majesty on my behalf, and trust at length to prevail, my lord of Buckhurst having promised to second your honour ; encouraging me in the meantime to tarry, as it is most needful to have me here. Whereupon I am resolved to discharge my duty ; assuring you that in the time of most troubles I have stood Mr. Wilkes in good stead, "and yet not one penny recompense towards my excessive charges and continuing toil." I am in daily attendance on my lord, whose letters I dispatch to all parts, besides performing other services, and shall attend him to Utrecht. I hear that 8s. a day is allowed out of her Majesty's pay to a water-bailiff at the Brill ; who would sell the same, serving it now only by a substitute. The States say there never was such an officer in peace, nor is he needful, or at least he ought to know the country custom and language. I would I had the allowance, though to speak plainly I could wish for some office here in court, whereby I might more roundly deal for the service of her Majesty and my country.The Hague, 21 April, 1587. Signed. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holland XIV. f. 107.]
Acknowledges letter for his repair to the court ; has just lost his wife, asks him to satisfy the Queen, and will be ready at all hours to go, to answer anything that concerns him. Meanwhile will send for Grove to repair thither.22 April, 1587. Add. Endd. p. [Ibid. XIV. f. 109.]
April 22./May 2. Extract from resolutions of the States General for the delivery to the Council of State of 200,000 livres for the payment of the troops, taken on Saturday, 2 May 1587. (fn. 1) Fr. 1 p. [S.P. For. Arch. XC., p. 212.]
April 23./May 3. Attestation by Hotman that about February last, advertisement was given to Mr. Wilkes (ambassador for her Majesty in the Low Countries) by the burgomaster of Grave, that two young Italians in his Excellency's suite had been bribed by the Prince of Parma to kill his said Excellency, to whom Mr. Wilkes (being very ill) asked deponent to send the said advertisement just as it had come to him in writing ; which deponent did as desired.The Hague, 3 May, 1587. Signed. Endd. p. [Holland XIV. f. 111.]
From London I wrote to your lordship on the 15th by Mr. Francis Croft the substance of what was negotiated on my last journey, and of the Duke's letter to her Majesty, giving full satisfaction both as to his very sufficient authority and his entire disposition to conclude the peace, and willingly granting her the honour of nominating the time and place for the meeting of the deputies, with assurance that the king would confirm it ; wherewith her Majesty showed herself well satisfied. But when she came to M. de Champagny's letter, she was much disturbed on the point of religion, of which the said letter makes mention, for assurance of the truth of that which I had said to his Highness on the part of her Majesty ; viz : that she would be satisfied not to stand on other points as to Religion than to obtain from the king for Holland and Zeeland so much toleration as he could concede with safety, conscience and honour ; with which his Highness seemed to be well content, by reason of his confidence in the good meaning and sincere intention of her said Majesty, and that she would not urge the king further than he would wish to go. But M. de Champagney, wishing to be clear on this matter, rather characteristically saying precisely that Religion was not to be spoken of, gave some offence to her Majesty, who thought that what had been said on her part to the Duke ought to suffice, who, when he was expecting that in reply to his said letter she would mention place and time for the meeting of the deputies, seeing that the affair was put off with the statement that he must first treat with Holland and Zeeland as regards what was granted in the treaty made with them, as without their consent her Majesty could conclude nothing in which they were concerned ; I say that by this it appears to his Highness that she is not proceeding with the sincerity which has been shown on his part, and that after having granted all that was desired, he finds himself treated in this manner ; as if before coming to this her Majesty should not have known, as also your lordship and the lords Treasurer and Controller what was agreed on with the said provinces ; a thing which afflicts me not a little, as also does, on the other hand the departure of Drake afresh with a good fleet to do the worst that he is able, making me fear that both these proceedings might easily cause God knows only too much harm to the general repose, and therefore, if it were not that I desire much to have letters from your lordship, to understand what you hope to do as to these people, I should go to my house, as soon as I had his Highness' reply, and let matters take their own course, not however without my very great grief to leave here so much dissatisfaction, and principally with myself as the unworthy instrument, who have been most importunate in inducing the duke to agree to every thing for the public peace, as he graciously accepted my account of your lordship's conversation ; and now to have to feel that I have left them deceived, and shall not be believed any more, amounts to this quod oleum et operam perdo, nihil proficiendo. It would seem that for our greater punishment God in his secret counsel has so ordained it, since that now on this side is seen that security of their sincere intentions which was desired. Having asked permission of his Highness to write this he wishes me to salute you on his behalf, desiring to make your acquaintance upon so good an occasion as would be the conclusion of this holy peace, if God should permit it.Brussels, 23 April, 1587, stilo vecchio. In de Loo's handwriting and by him. Endd. as Copy of the letter written to M. de Buckhurst. Italian. 1 pp. [Flanders I. f. 269.]
April 24. Rough notes by Burghley of moneys expended for the troops ; endorsed by him "A note of the charges in the Low Countries." 2pp. [Holland XIV. f. 112.]
Order to proceed upon Friday next, the 28th inst, to take the present muster, requiring the captains to be ready on that day with their companies at the hour and place assigned ; it having been found expedient by Lord Buckhurst and Sir John Norrys to have a general muster taken of her Majesty's auxiliary forces and others of her nation, serving in the United Provinces. 24 April. Margin, names of eleven towns in which the musters are to be held. 1 p. [S.P. For. Arch. XCI., p. 92.]
Unnecessary to write of the affairs of the country, but must tell him that his speedy return is very necessary and will be of more use than ten thousand men. The Duke of Parma dreads nothing so much, knowing well that his future ruin depends on nothing but her Majesty's embracing of the government of the country and H.E.'s return. Meanwhile, he is about to put in execution some great enterprises in the islands of Tertolen, Tregouze and other places, which will assuredly be prevented by H.E.'s presence. Refers to letter sent by Capt. Vere. Has still three foot companies remaining of the regiment which H.E. was pleased to give him, and hopes on his return to receive better treatment than has had from the Estates.Bergen-op-Zoom, 25 April, 1587, old style. Signed. Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holland XIV. f. 114.]
April 25. GILPIN to WILKES.
Perceiving that you cannot come hither because of your indisposition, I will briefly tell you what has passed since our arrival. On Saturday, my lord was met, a mile from the town by horse and foot ; the Count of Meurs, the Baron of 'High Saxon,' Baxe and other gentlemen ; also by General Norris and all his captains. As he entered the gates the great ordnance was shot off ; the burgers were in arms up to his lodging where the magistrates, who had before saluted him at the gates, made another speech and feasted him with great cheer, "with many healths, but all modestly and in sober order ; having never seen nor heard the Count of Meurs so quiet." Sunday afternoon the States of Utrecht saluted his lordship, and were asked to come next morning to hear what he had to declare to them, but owing to a swelling in one of his legs, he kept his bed and they were deferred till to-morrow morning. Yesterday (being Monday) afternoon, the captains of the town came to welcome him, "their Secretary making a solemn speech, wishing her Majesty to accept the sovereignty etc., whereto was answered in courteous sort, concluding that although her Majesty found it not fit as yet to intermeddle with the sovereignty" yet she was resolved to aid them with a larger force than last year. My lord has several times met with Mr. Norris and Mr. Clark but I know not what is resolved. I find the burgomaster, Deventer, resolved to maintain the authority of his Excellency, and using all means to that end. Here are certain deputies from Guelderland and Overyssel, busy about the dispatch of their deputies to the general meeting with instruction to deal especially with the negotiation of my lord Buckhurst, and what must be done against his Excellency's arrival. I see small hope of the return of the banished men, especially the five principal ones, but after to-morrow's meeting I shall know further. I have had sundry conferences with Mr. Webbe, but defer particulars till our meeting. Sir Thos. Shirley is gone this morning into Zeeland, to try to levy some money among the merchants, the want whereof has hindered the proposed enterprise. I hear that the soldiers of Lochum have spoiled the townsmen. "These be the fruits of deferring so long to relieve their necessities." Signed. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holland XIV. f. 116.]
April 25./May 5. "Copy of the oath ministered anew by Count Maurice," resolved by the States on the 6th of March, 1587, sent with letters of May 5 to Capt. Villiers [and other captains] desiring them to take it themselves, and have it taken by their men. (fn. 2) Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XIV. f. 118.]
What effects my Lord Buckhurst's negotiation has wrought with the States General, he himself has certified to you, and by all appearances the differences here will also be easily compounded. For my own particular, "I had employed my father and mother to solicit my revocation at such time as my lord of Leicester should return, not willing to endure such violent usage as was offered me by my lord during his government. By my lord of Buckhurst's induction, who is persuaded that by tarrying here I may do her Majesty and the cause service, I have given my consent thereto ; not that I look that the affairs shall proceed otherwise than they have done, or myself better used ; but because I will refuse nothing that may be pretended to the advancement of her Highness' service." I have only moved that I may have my commission from her Majesty, and crave your favour in this, as a most reasonable request. A great disgrace is offered me by my lord of Leicester "in appointing the muster-master and the auditor to make warrants for the distribution of her Majesty's treasure, leaving me clean out of any knowledge thereof ; a very extraordinary example, that such one as should be thought fit to command her Majesty's forces might not be suffered to be acquainted with the laying out of the money." The fruits of this I have already felt, for though I engaged myself for certain sums to relieve the companies in their necessity, yet I am not appointed to reinburse one penny ; and as for the treasure brought out by Sir Thomas Shurley, I have received both for my horse and footmen not ten days' pay, and if the like authority be continued for the distributing of the next, I must break my companies, both of horse and foot ; "which hitherto I have maintained the fairest in this country, to my extreme charges." In their commission also there was no mention for paying of any entertainment to me and my officers, so that if my lord Buckhurst had not favoured me with an order,...I had been utterly unprovided.... I pray you stand my good lord that our entertainments may be established from her Majesty, "for I am too well acquainted with the States' paying to be referred over to them, and in truth, it would be a plain show to be disfavoured by her Majesty if I do not receive pay and commission from her Majesty ; which were as much worth as my life if I did fall into the enemy's hands." The extreme want of victuals has held back the enemy. "He is now on foot in every quarter, and maketh show sometimes to attempt Berghes up Zome ; sometimes Sluis or Ostend and sometimes to march toward Guelderland, and in my opinion, thither will be his chiefest force employed. On our side, the most of our companies, both of horse and foot are greatly decayed ; our towns unprovided of victuals and all provisions of war greatly behind-hand ; now plainly appeareth that if we had kept the field this winter but with a reasonable troop, we had made the enemy unable to make war this summer." I am going up the Rhine to revictual the towns in those parts ; my troops are but small and our pay very short ; wherefore I beseech you to further the despatch of supplies and money, that no disaster may happen to us.Utrecht, 26 April, 1587. Holograph. Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Holland XIV. f. 119.]
I will do all I can for Mr. Brune, but the necessity of this State is such that if they employ their money to pay debts and not to pay the soldier, all would be lost. I can but procure him some assurance of pay towards winter, when the enemy is gone into garrison ; yet the fear is that all the money will be wasted with this summer's war. I am sorry not to see by your letters that Browne was committed and severely punished, for he justly deserves it. When he obtained the 1500l. the debt owing him was known well enough and promised to be paid, but he was told that first care must be taken for the victualling as the soldiers were like to be perished ; "whereas, so soon as he had the money, he retains it to pay his former debt, and leaves the poor soldiers to famish ; which they had done, or a revolt of the town to the enemy, if we had not devised new means to help it." There are many other complaints against him, but with my lord of Leicester's countenance, he dares do anything. Mr. Brune, on the other side, is here much commended ; but let him take heed how he disburse his money here upon hope of pay, for God knows it is dangerous.... I hear he is a very honest man, and therefore I pity the more his case.27 April, 1587. Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 pp. [Holland XIV. f. 121.]
On the 9th instant, I wrote to you from Dunkirk that I had taken up 50l. sterling and sent the bills to your honour which I hope you have accepted. Next day I was to have taken my journey to Conde but it fell out that I came directly to Brussels in company with a Spanish captain of Dunkirk and Mr. Bodenham. Reaching Brussels on the 13th, by order of the Prince I was sent to the public prison of the Provost General, who ordered the keeper to lodge and use me well, and to let me speak with such as I desired. The next day, after dinner, the Prince sent for me. His speeches being to no great purpose, I desist to write thereof, hoping in person to declare them to you. I returned to the prison, and the day following three Spanish soldiers came to bring me to this castle. At the water-side, I met with Sir William Stanley, Mr. Yorck, Mr. Tressam and others, in whose company I came to this town ; they lamenting my poor estate and offering to assist me to their power. Arriving here the same night, I came with my soldiers to the Castle, where I was lodged in a tavern. The next day the soldiers left me. The 17th "Col. Mondragon came to my lodging, and having received me kindly, told me that it was the Prince's pleasure not to lodge me in a prison, but where I might be well used, yet well looked unto for escaping ; and that I should speak with nobody but by consent" ; giving me hope shortly to enjoy my liberty, but how, I could not know. The 20th he sent for me to the garden and told me he had a letter from Col. Morgan, now governor of Bergues, on my behalf, and had sent it to the Prince. "With this and great kindness in words, I returned to my solitary lodging... On the 22nd, one Mr. Middleton came with leave of Mondragon unto me, by whom I understood that at the request of Col. Morgan and M. Fremyn, long since made unto the said Middleton I was come from Dunkirk hither with good appearance of my short liberty. These friendly actions make me believe his words, for he has persuaded the Prince to let me have more liberty ; and being delivered into his hands, he brought me into a very good lodging in the town. He is bound for me, that I shall not depart without leave, but demands no other assurance than my faithwhich God willing I will keep unviolatedand I may walk up and down the streets at my pleasure. I beseech you to acknowledge these great favours to Col. Morgan, M. Fremin and Mr. Middleton, whom I find my very friends and by whose means I hope within few days to receive my liberty and return to England. I pray you let my lord of Leicester and Sir Robert Sidney have part in this letter.Antwerp, 27 April, 1587, stilo Anglo. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Flanders I. f. 271.]
"I perceive that more advertisement touching the supply of 2000 men to be sent out of England is understood as though so many of her Majesty's soldiers here were dead, and thereby so much less money to be transported hither," wherefore I have thought it expedient to explain the truth. The cautionary towns, by her Majesty's express order, have now in them 500 men above the ordinary garrison, which Sir John Norris thinks most necessary to continue ; there are at least 1000 men too weak, sick and impotent to serve ; 200 men are allowed to my lord of Leicester and 100 to Sir William Pelham, "whereof, as Sir John Norris assureth me, there hath not been since the end of October, nor is at this present, one man. Our English in the States' pay have been so ill paid and provided for "that of eleven companies there will scarce rise a thousand men, and those so weak and ill-furnished as is lamentable. Any checks that result from incomplete companies are allotted to necessary uses, as to the raising of decayed and broken bands. Thus you may guess how inconvenient it were to abate the sending of the treasure, assuring you that if it comes not very speedily, we know not how or what to do. Fearing that want of wind might delay it, Mr. Treasurer is even now gone to Middelburgh with my letter to the merchants, to see what both our credits can procure. I beseech you also to send the 2000 men as soon as may be, for it is most necessary, which must be done "by levies of her Majesty and not of private captains, for the year is now so far spent as that those kind of levies would come too late." Sir John Norris and I have conferred whether her Majesty's forces may be filled without charging the country by making a full pay to the 12 of May, and we both think it may be done ; and that thenceforth, if 20s. a man be allowed to every captain, out of the checks, the bands shall be very well completed. He says it was continued with very good success until it was overthrown by the muster-master (whose pay and profit arises wholly out of checks). I have had great care for furnishing Ostend and Sluis with men and victuals. For Sluys, it is affirmed by the States that on the captain's return from England, besides the 600l. from her Majesty, he had 1700l. from them, and was sufficiently victualled for a good while, if he have not wasted it ; and that for men he has too many, since fewer might well defend it. For Ostend, where are six companies of her Majesty's men, I could not persuade them to furnish a siege magazine ; they saying that divers times having done so, the English soldiers broke into them and consumed them, and that now, wanting pay, they would do the like again. Whereupon I got their consent that 500l. due by her Majesty's soldiers to those of Brill might be used for a magazine for a month's victuals there, promising to take order with Sir John Conway (as I have done) for it not to be touched save in time of siege or for ready money. The rest of the loan money due to Brill, I got them to disburse to certain English soldiers in their pay, being in most miserable want. I hear nothing yet of the King of Portugal's son. When he brings me her Majesty's letters, I will do my utmost to perform her will therein. I told you before how far I thought her Majesty's treasure would extend, but since then the remainder has fallen out to be greater and thereby the pay lesser ; for certainty whereof I refer you to the account sent by Mr. Treasurer. In his own hand. "And thus, lying lame in my bed and therefore forced to use my servants' writing, I commit you to God's protection. Utrecht, 28 April, 1587. P.S. I caught my hurt with the stroke of a horse, which of itself not great, but being forced by continual business to neglect due care thereof, and to go upon it, hath made it now very ill unto me. I hear by bruit the 200 men are arrived at Ostend." Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holland XIV. f. 123.]
April 28./May 8. Summary state of the troops in the pay of the States according to the muster made on May 8, stilo novo.
Cavalry, 19 companies, besides that of Baron Willoughby, transferred to her Majesty's pay 2561 heads
Infantry of the States 23,215 "
" 11 English companies, comprising those absent 1385 "
Sum of the Infantry 24,600 "
Attested by De Vic. Noted as exhibited on 6 June. Endd. p. [Ibid. XIV. f. 125.]
I send you enclosed a letter lately received from Andrea "di Lo" and the copy of my answer, praying you as my especial dear friend that if, when you impart them to her Majesty, there should be anything offensive to her in my answer, "you will help it with her the best sort you can, knowing that whatsoever fault be found, it is committed in the abundance of all love and duty to her." Touching Hohenlo (fn. 3) I am infinitely bound to you for your good counsel. "Mr. Wilkes never meant it to such an end ; for he had but bare suspicions, nothing fit, God knoweth, to come to such a reckoning. He saith he meant it but for a premonition to you there, but I think it will from henceforth be a premonition to himself, to take heed to have good ground before he write of such particular. I could have done the same upon most of his own grounds, and so the like also touching others, but being but bare presumptions, and yet shrewd presumptions, I thought best rather to deliver it in a generality than in particular." Utrecht, 29 April, 1587. Postscript. "I write nothing to you but at your pleasure you may impart to Mr. Vice-Chamberlain, sed non sic de ceteris ; I mean for such things as by your discretion are not to be showed to all, whereof I think shortly to send you a long letter." Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland XIV. f. 126.]
My lord Buckhurst, after his late dispatch, sent by Mr. Atye, repaired to Utrecht, "where he received her Majesty's packet brought by Mr. Francis Croft, myself remaining sick at the Hague. Immediately upon the receipt whereof, his lordship wrote unto me to come with all expedition to Utrecht, and to bring with me my cipher, by the which he was to decipher a letter written unto him by her Majesty ; and because I was not then in case to travel without danger, I sent to his lordship the cipher, and excused myself in respect of my disease. "Notwithstanding, the next day, upon a second letter from his lordship, signifying the necessity of my repair unto him for her Majesty's important service, I ventured the journey and arrived here upon Wednesday last. As soon as I came, his lordship showed me a letter in cipher, signed with her Majesty's hand, by the which he was commanded, after advice first had with Sir John Norreys (fn. 4) and me to proceed to the seizing of the person of Count Hohenlo, whereat I was not a little amazed, considering that her Majesty's resolution in that case was founded upon a late advertisement written by me to your honour, which I hoped you would have reserved to your own knowledge, until upon further inquisition I might have been able to have attained to a more perfect understanding of the matter, by discovering of his instruments and the effect of his practice with the Duke of Parma. But to the purpose of her Majesty's letter :how difficile and dangerous a thing it will be to proceed to the apprehension of his person, as her Majesty commandeth, your honour in your wisdom and experience can best consider, although the means thereunto were as facile as her Majesty's conceipt to imagine the same ; the executing whereof is accompanied with so many dangers to this broken and weak estate, as in all appearance the attempting thereof will hazard the ruin and overthrow of the countries, for the reasons at large deduced in my lord's letter to her Majesty, which I forbear to mention herein because I know you shall be made partaker of that. "I have made it appear unto my lord from whom I received the intelligences and of what persons, amongst whom there are some that avouch to have seen and spoken with the ministers of Hohenlo at Tremulus [Deventer] coming thither with letters to Stanley and to the 60 [Governors] of Caesar [Zutphen] and Androglass [Groningen], then remaining at Deventer, which persons were now by chance in this town, to be spoken withal by his lordship. I have also nominated and offered to produce others for the verifying of like advertisements from other places, so as it is not to be doubted but Hohenloe hath been tampering with 25 [the enemy], but to what end, or what hath been concluded is yet unknown. "I trust my last letters by Page's man are come to your honour's hands, and that it hath pleased you to have consideration of my danger, which is manifoldly increased by the participating of my letters concerning Hohenlo with her Majesty who as your honour knoweth, can hold no secrets. If her Majesty do impart it to Themistocles [Leicester] I am sped, unless you help to hasten me home the faster, and in the mean time that her Majesty be seriously entreated to conceal it from Themistocles, or in case it be imparted unto him, then to lay upon him an extraordinary charge and commandment not to use it to my harm. "Here is, notwithstanding the late pacification on all sides made by my lord Buckhurst, secret working under-hand as well by Count Maurice, Hohenlo as 100 [the States] to make all things sure before the return of Themistocles. The two first are even now departed on a voyage upon the frontiers of P. [Holland] and into R. [Zeeland], to assure all the towns, and to establish in them such new companies as were appointed unto them at the beginning of our alterations here ; and in Zeeland they intend also to confirm him who was lately elected by Count Maurice as his lieutenant, as well over the whole province as over the regiment. "To deal plainly with your honour and under confidence of secrecy, I do see and palpably touch that the three above-named will never be soundly reconciled to Themistocles, whose return, in all appearance, will work dangerous effects here ; and yet I see the necessity of his coming such, for the preservation of these countries, that there is no remedy but that he must come and withal, if anything make Hohenlo play false, it will be the return of Themistocles, whom he hateth deadly, notwithstanding all his fair promises to my lord ambassador. I am sorry that the state of things here do give me cause to write in this sort unto your honour, which in discharge of my duty I may not omit to do. For mine own particular, howsoever the world go, or whosoever cometh or cometh not, I beseech your honour...that my revocation be speedily procured,"Utrecht, 29 April, 1587. Postscript. After writing this, your honour's of the 13th was delivered to me, wherein, to my great discomfort, you advise me not to labour for my revocation, because her Majesty from some opinion of my ability to serve her here, will hardly be drawn to yield thereunto. "I may answer justly that I am very insufficient for many considerations...yet when mine employment shall be accompanied with so many apparent hazards of my poor seemeth unto me, under correction, a hard reward for my faithful services to be left to the mercy of such as have will and means by revenge to bereave her Majesty of a true and obedient servant, and me of my life in an obscure sort to my perpetual infamy, to the pleasing of mine enemies and the discomforting of all honest men by my example from serving of her Majesty with that due sincerity that in her like services will be requisite, and therefore I trust your honour...will have good consideration of my case." Copy. 3 pp. [S.P. For. Archives XCI., p. 89.]
I have received both your letters, and am very sorry it was my hap to procure you so much travail but so little advantage to me, your poor friend ; but contrary to my expectation and I trust against any former purpose of your lordship, things have other wise fallen out than I looked for. Before I tell you my particular grief, I will call to your remembrance my manner of dealing with you, and your own resolution how you meant then to proceed, unless your lordship will have me think that all the informations you [sent?] here (which not only your ears but your eyes were witness of) were altogether frivolous and false. (fn. 5) "But leaving you to those thoughts of yours then, I will now go to the particular parts of your letters whereby I cannot but draw them to a flat contrary course from that you both seemed and faithfully promised to me you would take. "The first particular point which seemed strange to me was [that] in dealing with the States touching the lewd letters which [you?] did see, and I am sure then did mislike it, nevertheless that app[arently?], upon a simple answer without replication your lordship accepted the same for satisfaction, and specially they alleging unto you that the letters they wrote grew upon a piquant letter first written from one unto them, which answer was as false as it was, in my poor opinion, over easily rec[eived] and past over ; for I suppose for the meanest friend that you had had any estimation of, your lordship could not have done less, specially in advertising her Majesty but first have called for a sight of the letters, and if they had given you such cause to procure me in your opinion such a[n answer] from them, I must the less have blamed you to lay so m[uch] open ; but it seemed the answer was acceptable and used accord[ingly] readily for their excuse and my discredit ; but although you [did not] do so much for me as to cause call for such a letter before [...] it, yet I thank God I have procured the [......] and to my lords of the Council, by whom I trust I [am exonerated of] giving any such cause to the States either to word [their letter] as they did or at all to mislike my letter.... This being [the case I] think it must then be found there was little regard had for [my] credit, which I did wholly and altogether recommend unto your... friendly care. "The second particular matter that I have some cause to [think my] friendship in small account with you is this. It was [.....] to yourself, not only by mine own information to you but [by your] own letter to her Majesty, which your lordship brought to me and read it to me, albeit it pleased her Majesty before to show it me, and what resolution yourself made of Mr. Norrys to me I refer to your own memory ; but this I am sure : you thought him no fit man to be in service with me, neither at that time to remain there, but advised her Majesty yourself most earnestly to revoke him from thence ; and for my part, I did then resolutely and advisedly tell you that he and I would not serve there together and thereon did you advisedly and resolutely agree and conclude with me that he was no man to remain there, no, if it were your case as it was mine, all the world should not make you have him serve with you." There are enough here who are not ignorant of this. Yet you have not only changed that mind, but have written to her Majesty "that she may not remove Mr. Norrys and that there is no such man for that service...and withal moving her Majesty in a 'reciphreque' manner as it were to deal between Norrys and me as though he were my equal, and no offence had been made me, and that you had prepared his mind to be well content to receive my favour conditionally that the like promise be made on my part as of his ; wherein, how little soever your lordship esteemeth both of my place and calling, I would have had more regard of my lord of Buckhurst if the case had been between him and Norrys or his match... Your lordship hath deserved little thanks of me, if I must deal plainly, that doth equal me after this sort with him, whose best place is Colonel under me ; and once my servant and preferred by me to all the honourable places he had. And I must now, in your lordship's sight be made as it were a competitor with this companion, who never yet to this day hath done so much as take knowledge of my mislike of him," no not to say this much that he desired my suspension till he might either speak with me or be charged from me, and if should appear he had justly given me cause of offence, he would both acknowledge his fault and make me any honest satisfaction.... And ever so much I think your lordship doth me make so little difference between John Norrys, my man not long sithence and now but my man under me, as though we were but equals. And I cannot but more than marvel...when I remember your promises of friendship, first to me and then your opinion and judgment so resolutely set down of the man ; knowing my heart and full mind as you did, making you also acquainted with the thwart and unthankful dealings of Wilkes, and all other the usages there against me. [Further reproaches and protestations.] "As for the reconciliations and love days (?) you have made there, truly I have liked well of it, for your lordship did show me your disposition therein before, and I allowed of it ; and I had received letters both from Count Maurice and Hohenlo of their humility and kindness towards me ; yet now in your last letters you write that they have uttered at last the cause of their mislike towards me, which you forbear to write of, looking so speedily for my return. [But] therein, my lord, I think it is some wrong offered me, that [I should be] so handled as by those men, who one while speak [fair words of me] and another while they accuse and show discontentation [of me]... [If] it should be that the Count Hohenlo should now seem dis[contented, it] groweth upon a practice that I should hire one to kill him. This is a matter properly foisted in to drive me to choler [and] bring my name in question for so odious an act ; but your lordship sh[all] see, whether it please you to deal well or otherwise in it, I [shall not] suffer it to rest thus. I will challenge so much f[avour at] all the Provinces' hands as either I will be publicly [cleared of] this slander or the authors duly and severely punished. And albeit I see well enough the plot of this wicked devise, yet shall it not work that effect the devisers have done it for. No, my lord, he is a villain and a false lying knave, whatsoever he be and of what nation soever that hath forged this device ; for Count Hohenlo doth know I never gave him cause to fear me so much. I would not have used him as I did, if I had had so hard opinion of him. There was ways and means offered me, as well by himself as others to have quitted him of the country if I had so ill liked of him, but there was a former device as true as this which he always alleged to be the ground of his unkindness till now, and that was that I did procure Edward Norrys to send him his cartel, wherein I protest before the lord I was as ignorant as he that was in England, and his brother John can tell whether I did not send for him, to have committed him for it, but that in truth, upon the perusing of it, it was very reasonably written ; and did consider also the great wrong offered him by the said Count, did forbear it, and no other cause did he allege but this all this while till a new monstrous villany is found out, which I so hate and detest as I would look for the right judgment of God to fall upon myself if I had but once imagined it. I had more cause to fear those practices than he had, and I was so careful for his safety after the brawl between him and Norrys as I charged Sir John that if any harm came to the Count's person by any of his or under him that he should answer it. Therefore I take this to be bred in the bosom of some 'machelike' [qy. Machiavelic] atheist or villain whatsoever he were and I will complain me to the whole States and Provinces of it, and to make trial whence it came, as there is means enough. For Villiers is the first breaker of it to Dr. Clarke and Wilkes, and took witness of Wilkes that he hath heard of it before. All which makes good proof of his former good dealing with me, that hath heard of so vile and villanous a reproach of me and never gave me knowledge. But I trust your lordship shall receive her Majesty's order for this, as for a matter that toucheth herself in honour and me, her poor servant and minister as deeply as any matter can do." For what you show me in your letters of the earnest desire of the people for my return and the speed you wish me to make thither, I can hardly be persuaded, howsoever the general sort desire it, that the higher sort do wish it ; neither hath your lordship, in my judgment, taken the way to have it so.... As first for the matter of Sir John Norrys, with whom you knew I would not serve, you would not so hastily without me have given the advice you did to her Majesty ; for thereby it must appear either you thought me a very unconstant man or a very simple soul ...either to allow of Norrys, or else, if I [valued] myself no more than one of your men would do, I must refuse to come thither." [Refers again to the matter of Buckhurst having too easily accepted the States' answer, giving it as a proof that his lordship did not really desire his return.] "The third impediment that I gather that your lordship meant not my so hasty coming over is the villanous slander...which was a matter only to choke my disposition if any might serve ; as indeed this nor any the rest can if her Majesty deal in the cause so graciously as is wished. For as I know her Majesty will make more difference between Norrys and me than I find your lordship doth, so do I not think that would be any stop to me, no more should the rest, being most assured the trial of them shall turn to mine honour, both there and here, and I am not so simple, my lord, but I can see very easily all these drifts and the ground of them. And as one device failed Mr. Norrys when he offered to serve with the same forces her Majesty doth now only allow against all the King of Spain's forces, and saw no cause why her charges should be increased, so now it appears from your lordship and himself also that 50,000l. increase is little enough ; and yet you know I yielded to less than that sum ; but I mean not to strive with his worship, but to be 'habled' to maintain the cause with probability. I [am] no mercenary man ; let them make bargains as they can that must [live] by them. For my part, if her Majesty deal to enable to whole [...] by her protection and goodness, I will adventure mine own [life and] all I have withal, otherwise all Holland cannot hire me [to do it]....Croydon, last of April, 1587. (fn. 6) Copy, in Wilkes' hand. Endd. 5 pp. [Holland XIV. f. 129.]
"We stand here upon hope and expectation from England, wherein if we fail, we are very like to fall. I beseech God incline her Majesty's heart to send a full pay for her poor soldiers. They live in great want and many also die, and her Majesty saves never a penny ; for the checks, they say, must of force go to new raising of bands, as in truth I think they must, or else in a short time they will decrease to nothing. I have sent a project of a new form of government here if my lord of Lester come not, and I verily think it will bring great good and surety to this estate. (fn. 7) I did it, being advertised that my lord of Lester's coming was doubtful, in respect of the great demands from her Majesty. I am forced, being stark weary with writing, to refer your lordship to Mr. Secretary's letter.Utrecht, last of April, 1587. Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland XIV. f. 133.]
"Lest it may seem strange unto you for that in my project I appoint so great authority to Hohenlo, (fn. 8) upon whom lately so vehement suspicion hath been laid, I have thought good by these few [lines] to let you know that as the matters gathered against him are merely matters of presumption and not of proof, so hath both Sir John Noris, Mr. Wilkes and myself...thus finally resolved :namely that either it is a device plotted even between the States and him only to entertain the enemy with vain hope for awhile, whereby the rather to stay him from his preparations and attempts ; which kind of practice the Prince of Orange oftentimes did use : or else, if it should be meant indeed, that there it only groweth from the root of that mortal hatred which he bears unto 40 [the Earl of Leicester]. To the intent that if the said Earl of Leicester shall return, and by his authority and proceeding so bridle Hohenlo as might not be to his liking, that then he would always have this matter in store, as well to make his gain as to revenge himself upon the said Earl of Leicester. But if the said Earl shall not return and withal Hohenlo to have such honour and authority as by the said project is ascribed unto him, it is thought that without all doubt, howsoever the case stand, he will retire himself from all such intention and faithfully and truly serve the States. (fn. 7) Utrecht, last of April, 1587. Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. XIV. f. 137.]
Whereas we have of late used your service about an intended treaty of peace between the King of Spain and us, dealt in by the Duke of Parma, to the end you may now perceive how far forth the matter hath since proceeded we send you herewith the copies of such letters as have lately been written, both to ourself by the said Duke, and by Champigny to the Controller of our house in that behalf ; by the contents whereof, finding that the gravest difficulty like to be by them stood upon will be the point of religion, we think it necessary for the better removing of the same, to dispatch one to the said Duke with a copy of such letters as we have lately received from the States ; by the which it may appear how peremptorily they do specially stand upon the said point of religion, to the end that upon knowledge of such their resolution, he may the easilier be persuaded to employ himself to dispose the King's mind to relent therein, in some convenient sort. And for that purpose, we have taken order that the said Duke, by the party whom we mean to send unto him shall be put in mind of the treaty held at Gaunt in anno 76, called the Pacification of Gaunt, which being afterward confirmed by the King himself was published at Brussels in anno 77. And that in a later treaty, held at Cologne in anno 79, it was, among other articles also agreed that the said treaty...should in all points be duly observed and executed ; which giveth just cause to hope that if the said King be willing to embrace peace, and the said Duke to further the same, as he pretendeth he may be induced to such a toleration as in the said pacification is contained. "Now it resteth that you should seek to frame the minds of the people of these content themselves with the said toleration, for which purpose you shall of yourself, as one that wisheth well to the Countries, deal with some well chosen persons there...good patriots, void of ambition and covetousness and not desirous of the continuance of the war, in respect that thereby they draw private gain...laying before them how impossible it is for them, by means of the continue the war and to make head any long time against so mighty and puissant a prince as the King of Spain ; and how unable ourselves shall be to supply them still with such relief as the necessity of their state doth require...the consideration whereof, you may tell them, moveth advise them to dispose both their own minds and the minds of that people to a sound peace, which, in your opinion, they cannot at any time treat of with greater advantage than at this present ; the King of Spain being, as he is, at so low an ebb both at home and in these countries, for want as well of victuals as of other necessary things to continue the wars ; which occasion being not now taken hold of, they shall not perhaps hereafter happen upon the like again ; with such other pertinent reasons and persuasions as yourself may devise and find necessary to prepare their minds to hearken to a peace. "Nevertheless, if you shall find that the using of these reasons and persuasions in our name may further the cause by moving them the rather to hearken unto peace, we leave it to yourself to use in such case, your own advice and discretion therein. And for that some ill-affected persons there, upon speeches that may be given out touching our dealing with the said Duke (whereof, as we understand, they have some inkling) may be some ground to breed some unnecessary jealousies in the peoples' heads of the countries, we think it meet that you should assure them,... that whatsoever shall pass between us and the said Duke, we will not fail to have the care of them that appertaineth, considering how greatly their surety standeth with our well-doing (?). Endd. "April, 1587. M[inute] from her Majesty to the Lord of Buckhurst, touching the proceeding in peace." 3 pp. [Holland XIV. f. 228.]
April. Paper endorsed "Abuses [i.e. slanders] offered to her Majesty, his Excellency and her nation, by the States and others in these countries. That her Majesty, by demanding a thousand lasts of corn for the famine in London, meant to exhaust these countries of victuals and means of carrying on the war.
Margin. The minister at Delft, M. Moreau came to ask me the truth of this, saying the town was much excited by the news. A merchant of La Rochelle, desiring a passport for corn, told me he had heard the same. That she was giving ear to ambassadors of foreign kings and princes, to treat of peace with Spain, against her promise and the treaty.
Margin. This has been in the mouth of many, whereupon the letter was written by M. de Villiers to her Majesty. Parasis says that Sylla has written it from England, and M. Menin says he knows of it for certain. That she would not accept the sovereignty except entirely and without reservation, and wished to put these countries under the law of "Pressed," i.e. forcing men to go to the war.
Margin. This rumour was spread at Leyden, shortly after the taking of Deventer. Rogemorter came express from Leyden to ask me about it. And Mr. Deventer writes that there has been the same report at Gorcum. That Stanley being a person of such quality in England, it is not likely he would have committed such a treason without the knowledge and consent of her Majesty.
Margin. Sir Roger Williams has heard this and other like discourse at the table of the Count of Hoh[enlo]. That on his departure his Excellency had the coffers of the Treasury opened and carried away what he chose into England.
Margin. Mr. Wood and other English heard Cooper say this. And M. the Elector [Truchsess] says that Bardesius used the like language. That his Excellency managed the contributions granted to him so badly, that the garrisons received no pay during the nine months of his government.
Margin. Captain Le Farge said this one day at the table of M. de Buy in the presence of several captains. That he received from these countries and from England great sums which are not accounted for.
Margin. This report has been in everyone's mouth. That the English gentlemen who came over made their personal profit with H.E.'s knowledge. That he had thrust himself into the government and they must thank God his year was expired.
Margin. Brassart and others of the States said to be the authors of this. That he put Stanley and Yorck into their posts expressly in order to betray them.
Margin. Penredoc heard this at Leyden from a Walloon captain. That by means of the Restriction of the Council of State he had carried the authority into England, where he and the Privy Council might dispose of all things at their pleasure.
Margin. Said by Barnevelt and others both in open Council and privately. That the English nation has been ill-treated both by words and deeds, and at one time the talk was of chasing them away and cutting them in pieces, as enemies of the State.
Margin. Said to have been threatened in the Council of State. That the country had never been so much deceived by the French as by the English ; and that their government was intolerable.
Margin. Said by Barnevelt in the Council of State. That the country had fallen de tyrannide in tyrannidem and if they had not suffered the tyranny of the Spaniards and French, still less will they bear it from the English.
Margin. Carlo Roorda has held this and the like discourse at the table of M. the Elector. That the English are cowards and unfit for war, so that they cannot bear its hardships.
Margin. The Count of M[urs] has said this several times. And that there should no longer be any English troops or governor but only money from her Majesty to carry on the war.
Margin. Mr. Roger Williams says that a burgomaster of Delft uttered this at Count Hollock's table. And say moreover openly that this country and especially the province of Holland can defend itself without foreign aid ; and that it was very harmful to impress the contrary opinion on the minds of the people.
Margin. Barnevelt said it in the Assembly of the States of Holland, and Paul Buis, in talk with me, has maintained the same.
Endd. "Aprilis, 1587." Fr. 3 pp. The marginal notes in a different hand. [Holland XIV. f. 93.]
Lamenting that the hopes of help given him by his honour have not yet been fulfilled. If his Excellency returns to the Low Countries, would wish to be recommended to him, to make manifest by results what it would be boastful for him to say of himself. Fears that factious persons or ill-wishers may have traduced him, or that his honour's multiplicity of affairs has prevented him from learning the truth. Would rather be at once dispatched by a mortal blow, considering the extremity to which he is reduced, not by evil living but by failure in that to which he had vowed himself ; which will not make him fear a more sad and thorny path, to save the soul of honour. Add. Endd. "April 1587." Fr. 1 p. of very close writing. [Ibid. XIV. f. 150.]
April. Names of towns or garrisons, with, in some cases, number of cannon. No covering sheet. 1 pp. [Ibid. XIV. f. 152.]
April. Note of places where the nine commissaries of musters are to be placed. With names both of those of her Majesty and of the States. 1 p. Endd. with date. [Holland XIV. f. 153.]
April. "Means to strengthen the bands both of horse and foot." For the cavalry ; to give the captains three or four months' pay according to their old rolls. Or else, send six soldiers and six merchants into the East countries, where they can buy as many good horses as they list for six and eight pounds apiece, as the reiters have. For the footmen ; to give the captains two months' pay after their old rolls, or else 40s. a head. By these means, within three months after receipt of their money they will have their companies complete and fair, according to the numbers by their commissions. Endd. "April, 1587." p. [Ibid. XIV. f. 159.]
April. "The expence of her Majesty's treasure for the Low Countries." Payments for the troops, garrisons of cautionary towns, principal officers, extraordinaries etc., amounting to 192,154l. 12s. 7d. 2 pp. [Ibid. XIV. f. 160.]
Copy of portion of the above ; with memoranda by Burghley. 2 pp. [Ibid. XIV. f. 162.]
Another copy of part of the above. 1 pp. [Ibid. XIV. f. 164.]
April. Notes of the said charges by Burghley, apparently part of a draft for the above. 2 pp. [Ibid. XIV. f. 166.]
April. Document endorsed "List of the horsemen and footmen pretended to be in the States' pay, and as they mean to have the companies filled. Delivered to my L. Buckhurst. A cunning attempted by the States in pretending to have so many in their pay, to the end they might have no more of the English brought over." Names of captains and number in their companies. A grand total of 35,151 heads. 7 pp. [Ibid. XIV. f. 155.]
April. A "project of the ordinary [and extraordinary] charges to be sustained by the States of the United Provinces, April, 1587." viz :
"A project of the ordinary yearly charges, as well of the 20,000 footmen in garrison as also of sending other things thereto pertaining [details given] Sum, 248,800l.
"The ordinary yearly charge of 2000 horsemen lances ordinary to be dispersed in garrison or to be adjourned to the army. Sum, 48,000l. Sum total, 296,800l.
"A project of the extraordinary charges for 1000 pioneers ; 7000 footmen and 2000 ritters ; parcel of the army. And of divers other things belonging to the said army [details given] Sum of all the said charges, 94,600l.
And so the whole charges for the war for this year...amounts to, over and besides the ordinary forces of her Majesty 391,400l. Toward which is paid by the ordinary contribution of 20,000l. a month 240,000l.
And so remains to be paid by extraordinary levies 151,400l. of which the General States promise to levy 101,400l., so as it may please your Majesty of your grace to disburse the other 50,000l.
Endd. 2 sheets. [Holland XIV. f. 135.]
April. Notes, with contents endorsed as follows :
(By Burghley's clerk) "April, 1587. Entertainment of principal officers of the field. Per diem, 10l. 10s. Per mensem, 294l." (By Burghley). "The entertainment of the Earl of Leicester by the States at 27l. per diem. Whereof received, a 22 May, 1586, ad 28 Jan., 1587 [N.S.], 6205l." 1 p. [Ibid. XIV. f. 168.]


  • 1. The full text, in Dutch, in Japikse : Resolutien der Staten Generaal Vol. V., pp. 694-5.
  • 2. The Dutch text of the oath is given by Bor : Ned, Oorloge Bk. xxii., fol. 30b.
  • 3. The symbol in the cipher used by Buckhurst with the Queen.
  • 4. The words in italics are in the cipher used between Wilkes and Walsingham, the key to which is to be found at the beginning of a volume of transcripts in the British Museum, Add. MSS., 5935.
  • 5. The letter is in parts injured by damp, and has become illegible in places ; the words in brackets are supplied tentatively.
  • 6. Considerable portions of this letter are printed by Motley, United Netherlands ii., pp. 231-4.
  • 7. Not with these papers, but printed in Cabala pt. II., pp. 22, 23.
  • 8. The symbols for Hohenlo and the States are identified by Buckhurst's letter to the Queen printed in Cabala pt. II., pp. 23-4.