Calendar of State Papers Foreign, Elizabeth, Volume 21, Part 4, January-June 1588. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1931.
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February 1588, 6–10
Sir William Russell to Walsingham.
Upon intelligence of the enemy's pretence to come into the island, “I having the consents of these townsmen and the people near adjoining, by my lord Willoughby's patent, my company came hither, and before their landing here, the Estates marvelled at their coming and thought it was altogether needless … and for that I know how much a company of horse might let the first landing of the enemy, did procure the States' promise (if any company were to be placed here) that mine should be one; and perceiving they were unwilling to have them to stay longer at that time, did send them back again. The Estates, thinking to place certain companies of horse and 400 musketeers in Camphere and Armewe, those townsmen refusing them, do now determine to bestow them in this island, contrary to their former allegation of having no need of any such forces here.”
This double dealings makes me suspicious of their good meaning towards this town, and I caused a drum to warn all within the seigneury and liberty of Flushing not to receive any forces; and have signified to the Estates my surprise at their lodging these companies without my privity and consent, as this seigneury pertains to my government; and it is very dangerous to the security of this place to permit such forces to rest within less than half an English mile of the town.
And seeing that Camphere refuses the Estates dwelling there, depending wholly on her Majesty and this town, I pray your honour to persuade her Majesty to assure herself of them by taking the companies now here into her pay; for being possessed of that town the whole island will be safe and void of fear; the inhabitants greatly longing for some encouragement from her Majesty in this course.
I beseech you to further my former requests concerning this place.—Flushing, 6 February, 1587.
Sends news lately received.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland XXI. f. 47.]
Sir William Russell to Burghley.
To the same effect as the preceding.
I understand that those of Tervere stand firm to her Majesty, and are as suspicious as myself of the States' dealings.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. f. 49.]
H. Kyllygrew to Burghley.
Surely these men are very weak, both by the disunion of the provinces and the mutinies not yet appeased, nor money ready to appease them. It was generally given out that they were all quiet upon condition of three months' pay, but by letters from Count Hohenlo and the other deputies sent to compound with the soldiers, the Council is informed they demand four months' pay, which is not easily furnished, for their means decay daily, and the wisest among them think that “when the people shall see matters go so backward, they will be as backward to contribute…. If present order be not taken, the towns are in great danger to fall into the enemy's hand, for Getruidenbergh and Worcum refer themselves to such agreement as they of Huisden shall make, who, it is feared, have some secret intelligence with the enemy, and within six or seven days are likely to deliver the town unto him.” And when the present danger should make them by all means still these uproars, Count Maurice and others are gone towards North Holland, “to see what may be compassed against Colonel Sonoie, a man whom they have always found most faithful unto them; yet now, by reason of the diffidence they conceive against her Majesty and his Excellency, towards whom they know he is most affectionate, they seek all means to entrap him; first by stay of his soldiers' payment, thereby to raise them to mutiny, and now they are mutinied, by promise of four months' pay to deliver him unto them.” The more I look into their dealings, the more I fear those of Holland purpose to single out themselves from the other provinces, and so make a way to their own peace, wherefore they are the more earnest against Sonoie, as being master of a place they suppose may bridle them. I pray your lordship to consider these things and counsel her Majesty either to send over some man of quality to stay these mischiefs, “or else to use the matter of peace, as there shall be thought meet for the best advantage.”
In the meantime, regard is to be had of the Brille and Vlisshing. I have continually warned the governors how watching they ought to be, and that rather in respect of their friends than their enemies.
Sir Martin Schenk has raised a fort on the further side of the Rhine, over against Bon, and lately “made a road” into Westfalia and took a town belonging to the Bishop of Cologne with rich booty, forcing the Duke of Parma's soldiers, sent to block him in, to retire into a town not far off “which was wholly papistical, where after they were entered and friendly entertained, they spoiled and sacked the inhabitants, to their utter ruin.” The enemy has abandoned the fort of Zutphen, leaving it to be kept by only a few boors, so that it is thought it might be recovered with small help; “but these men are so busy, what in appeasing the mutinies and what in undermining of Sonoie, as they cannot attend any such enterprise.” The Haghe, 7 February, 1588.
Postcript in his own hand. I shall shortly write more, “for this day the States have appointed to send the Council instructions to govern, by [sic] which I think will not be received of divers of them, who are tired already, and discomforted with the States' proceedings.
Signed. Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Holland XXI. f. 51.]
Arthur Atye to Walsingham.
“This enclosed” contains such material notes as are advertised to his lord and master from the Low Countries. The points that require resolution he takes to be these:—
1. “What you will write to the Estates General touching the matter of Utrecht and of Naerden; their hard dealing with Col. Sonoye, and evil usage of all affected to her Majesty; their sending so many soldiers into Walcheren, and their refusal of English cornets there.
“With regard in your letters that the Earl of Leicester's actions, and all theirs that remain affected to her Majesty be maintained.
2. What encouragement you will write to the province and city of Utrecht; to Col. Sonoye and his men; to Naerden, Camphere and others well-affected, Count Meurs, Sir Martin Skencke etc.
3. What you will answer to Sir W. Russell's demands for victuals, pay for the garrison, shipping and the English merchants to reside at Vlisshing.
4. For the revocation of Mr. Killigrew and placing Mr. Gilpin in his room.
Will deliver the letters at his house after dinner, as his lordship may call for them before.—Leicester House, 7 February.
Endd. A collection of things to be propounded to the Lords … extracted out of letters written to the E. of Leicester. Add. 1 p. [Holland XXI. f. 53.]
Memorial from Meetekirke and Sonoy.
At the beginning of his Excellency's government, Col. Sonoy took the oath of fidelity to her Majesty and his Excellency, as did all other soldiers in the country. Since his Excellency's departure last year, the States of Holland and the Counts Maurice and Hohenlo have tried to make him change this oath, even to proceeding against him with violence (par voye de fait). That he has nevertheless until now remained entirely faithful, having promised his Excellency at his last going away to change nothing until he learned her Majesty's pleasure.
By his letters of Jan. 29, he has sent word that he was informed that the States had tried to bring him to the Hague, to which end they had granted him passport, and being master of his person, would have forced him to evacuate his garrisons of the North Quarter and town of Medemblicq.
That having five weeks ago begged for the payment of his garrisons in the North Quarter, they refused it, and gave the soldiers to understand that while they followed Sonoy and did not give him up into the hands of the said States they should not be paid; to which end persons were sent to Medenblicq to suborn the said soldiers.
While awaiting her Majesty's resolution, he is entertaining the garrison from his own means, in the hope that she will not abandon him.
The States reply to his entreaties that they make no account of his oath to her Majesty or his Excellency, and that he must obey the States and Count Maurice. That he is to dismiss the garrison from Medemblicq without any discussion, as otherwise they will denounce it publicly, without paying it anything at all, as they also inform the soldiers, to make them mutiny.
Wherefore the said Colonel, begs for advice how he should behave in future, in order to satisfy her Majesty; the state of his affairs allowing of no delay, it not being possible for him to continue the charges which he has hitherto been at for the payment of the soldiers.
That the Sieur Jan le Michiel may be safely escorted to Medenblicq, for the avoidance of all danger.
Unsigned. Endd. French. 1¾ pp. [Holland XXI. f. 55.]
Capt. Francis Littelton to Walsingham.
Our last cause for suspicion is not unknown to your lordship [sic], “when so many soldiers and mariners entered secretly into our garrison of Flushing, which, being friendly repulsed prevented the determined practice of others in like sort, since which time there was sent by Grave Morris and the Count Hollock certain companies of foot to lie in our island of Walcheren, which being landed at Middelburg, entered the island, robbed and spoiled the boors at their pleasures, who, upon such injuries received, appealed to my lord Governor of Flushing for defence; sithence which time the said Graves hath sent down certain companies of horse belonging to Count Morris and the Captain Villiers, which the island refusing, are billeted in Middelburg and Armewe, Camphire only refusing to entertain either horse or foot, or perform any decree from the States other than shall like her Majesty, to whom they are sworn to defend their garrison. There runneth also a flying report of a great number of musketeers to be drawn out of Holland, Friseland and Gelderland, to be billeted upon the boors in our island….—Flushing, 7 February, 1587.
Signed. Add. Endd. ¾ p. [Ibid. f. 57.]
G. de Prounincq to Sir William Russell.
Recommending the bearer, a minister, a very worthy man, and excelling both in the French and Low German tongues.
The commissaries of the Council of State are here to learn how the misunderstandings between some of the nobles and the magistracy of this town may be settled. We have given them such satisfaction that they are making a very favourable report to the Council, the States General and the States of Holland; confessing with Count Nieuwenar that the right to change the magistracy belongs to his Excellency, whom the said Count acknowledged to have wronged by not believing it.
We have remitted the cause of the banished men to his Excellency and the said Count, with a declaration in regard to the nobles that for love of the above Council, the States General and the States of Holland we will do, on their demand what we would never have done for love of the said nobles.
Those of Heusden have reduced their demand for pay from eight months to six. They let none enter, however friendly who is bearing or may bear arms. Those of Worcum persist in the same course.
The garrison of Naerden and most of the burghers hold to their first resolution, but of Colonel Senoy we hear from the Hague that Count Maurice and the States have, by gifts and promises so stirred up his soldiers that they have made him prisoner, and that the day before yesterday the Count went thither to receive him into his hands and satisfy the soldiers. I have sent an express this morning to Amsterdam, to learn the truth of this.
[Margin. I have just heard from Naerden, dated this morning. All there yet persist in their resolution, but there is great fear that they may lose courage, as they receive no comfort from his Excellency and Colonel Sonoy has his hands full. From this it would seem that the rumour from the Hague is false, for the advice goes on to say that commissaries from Holland are expected at Medenblicq to induce Senoy to change his mind. Captain Ranchy has determined to go to parley with Buys between Wesop and Nerden, with thirty soldiers but I am sending a post to dissuade him from so dangerous a thing.
The company of Churley which went from hence towards Swol, was attacked by the enemy before the gates of that town, in sight of the burghers, who, however, would neither give them refuge nor succour. The cornet was killed, but the flag saved, with some twenty horses and about thirty dismounted men; the rest either killed or prisoners. I am much vexed about it, for if they had taken my advice, the company would not have gone, but it was not of our garrison; only placed here by request of the States to the College in which I have only my one vote, and no authority, as in the city.]—Utrecht, 7 February, 1588, stilo antiquo.
Postscript in his own hand. I hear that Mr. Killigrey has protested in her Majesty's name against the States of Holland, in case they attempt anything against Col. Senoy, but they will not cease to pursue their course; presumably they mean to make Count Maurice Count of Holland and Governor General of the United Provinces.
Signed. Add. Endd. “7 Feb. 1588 stilo novo [sic]. From Monsieur Deventer.” French. 2 pp. [Holland XXI. f. 59.]
Sir William Russell to Walsingham.
Has this afternoon received a letter from the Captains and Officers of Camphire, sent by consent of the burghers, showing that they of the town have sworn to rely wholly upon her Majesty. “They have no liking to the dealings of the Estates, suspecting they pretend mischief against them.”
Prays his honour to solicit her Majesty to receive the garrison of Camphire into her pay, as they desire, and to acquaint her “that she being throughly assured of that place, the whole island will perforce always rest in subjection unto her.” Also beseeches him to be a means that they of the town may receive some good encouragement to proceed in the course they have taken and that the captains and soldiers may have some money to content them “in the mean time.” Finds the people of this island very tractable to consent to any good course desired of them.— Flushing, 7 February, 1587.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. f. 61.]
The Captains of Camphire to Sir William Russell.
Stating that this day, at their request, the magistracy and Great Council of their town have assembled, with the Council of war of the burghers, in whose presence they have presented the Act given them by the Earl of Leicester, and stated that in accordance therewith, they were resolved to admit no other garrison, and to maintain and defend the oath made to her Majesty and the said Earl, against whom they wished to enterprise nothing, having no enemies save the Spaniards and their adherents. The said magistracy and Great Council having heard their proposition, made the like resolution on their part; declared that they also had no other enemies than as above, and that they would hold good correspondence with all the neighbouring towns.— Tervere, 17 February, 1588.
Signed: Pieter de Coster, Ambroise le Ducq, R. Vanden Ende, Carsillis Pallant.
Endd. French. 1 p. [Holland XXI. f. 62.]
“A mean to reduce the provinces, now divided, to union.”
Since the Estates are not willing that the Lieutenant of her Majesty should meddle with matters of policy or justice, it would be best for the general government of the provinces, by authority and intervention of her Majesty, to be commited to a principal lord in the said provinces, acceptable to them.
And as the memory of the late Prince of Orange is in great esteem amongst them, it seems that none would be more suitable for this charge than his son, Count Maurice, upon the like footing as was the commission to the Earl of Leicester. Provided always, that he would show all due respect to her Majesty, and that he would in no wise show any resentment against actions of those employed, during the Earl's government, in the service of her Majesty, his Excellency and the country [Margin with revocation of the ignominious sentence pronounced by those of Leyden] but that they should be employed in offices of war, counsel, policy and justice as heretofore, putting out of mind all that had been done or attempted on either side.
And that Colonel Sonoy should be continued in the charge given him by the late Prince of Orange.
Letting the Estates understand that they need have no suspicion of her Majesty by reason of her sending commissioners to treat with the Prince of Parma, as they may be well assured that she will not treat or conclude anything prejudicial to the provinces as regards religion, well knowing that this would tend to the ruin of her own kingdom. But if, after the proposition of articles by the King of Spain, it is found that these would not conduce to the welfare of these provinces and the conservation of religion with due assurances, her Majesty will always be able to draw back and to break off the negotiation.
After which, the Estates, understanding the aim and intention of the King of Spain, will have cause to take up arms again more vigorously and make war either offensive or defensive.
Endd. with date. French. 1¼ pp. [Ibid. f. 64.]
Andrea de Loo to Burghley.
His last was of the 4th inst., in reply to his lordship's of the 19th of last month. This goes only to accompany the enclosed for the Lord Chancellor and the Commissioners, sent him from Antwerp, whence they write that the Sieur de Champagny is still there awaiting the coming of the Commissioners. His Highness also is weary of the delay, seeing the time passing and that he cannot much longer delay to go about the execution of his enterprises, in default of the peace, which, while he desires it above anything, yet he is ill pleased that the Commissioners have not come before this, especially in respect of the King, to whom he wishes to write that they had met to arrange matters. The opportunity seems very favourable for the peace if this delay does not change the Duke's favourable disposition.—Ghent, 7 February, 1587 old style.
Postscript. Sends a copy of what the Sieur de Champagny wrote on Jan. 30 new style, concerning the reason why Don Giovanni de Medici went to lodge in the English House at Antwerp, to prevent it being taken in another way.
Sees that the Master of the Posts there has detained the letters sent to himself there; which the present bearer has only brought him this morning.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Seal. Italian. 1 p. [Flanders II. f. 58.]
Sir William Russell to Burghley.
“… The captains and burgers of Trevere have utterly refused to obey Count Morice and Count Hollock, they greatly suspecting, as well as myself, that there is no good meant by them toward her Majesty and the country, saying they will keep it for her use [as] a place of great importance, and the only town that may assure the island; being, as it should seem, very well affected to our government and our nation, rather desiring to repose trust in us than in their own nation; wherefore, if it might stand with her Majesty's good liking, it were very necessary for her to assure herself of that place, and then is all the island at her devotion.
“We have now certain advertisement that the Duke of Parma will employ for Ostend and not for this island, and yet, notwithstanding, the Count Hollock will bring in 1500 musketeers, which doth greatly amaze the better sort, not knowing what course to take, myself greatly doubting the sequel thereof, being a thing utterly misliked of by the common burgers of the towns.”
Mr. Killigrew writes that he greatly doubts these men are employed here for no good purpose. I greatly wish her Majesty were assured of the island.—Flushing, 8 February.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1¼ pp. [Holland XXI. f. 66.]
Sir William Russell to Leicester.
Since writing last, has received the letter which he now sends from the Captains of Camphere, by consent of the burghers who are willing to take any course her Majesty and his lordship shall appoint. Those of Armewe are of the same mind and desire much to receive his resolution. Beseeches him to solicit her Majesty to receive the garrisons into her pay; also to send over some money to content them in the mean time. The boors and people of the island are also marvellously well affected to her Majesty. Recommends Mr. Ashyleres to his lordship.—Flushing, 8 February, 1587.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland XXI. f. 68.]
H. Kyllygrew to Leicester.
I wrote three days since of the dealings with Sonoy; since which time Barnevelt and others of Holland are gone after Count Maurice, “who is, they say, at Horne, and hath not yet Sonoy at his devotion, but it is greatly feared that his soldiers will be corrupted, and he deceived of those he trusted; so as his state is lamentable, for if he come in [to their] hands, there will be small favour showed him. Therefore it were good the States' deputies there were dealt withal, that they may dispatch with speed to the States on his behalf, with whom there is no dealing. In Council we do nothing, but send all suits to the States, and they to them of Holland or to Barnevelt and Count Maurice before answer can be had; so as I know not what I do here, where things be not handled according to the contract, for the Council have no power to dispatch any suits.
“It is said the States will this day send us instructions after what sort we shall govern; and they of the Council do doubt it will not be such as they may accept, for ‘them’ be all weary of the place, seeing all things going to ruin.
“They of Huisden are not pacified, but offered ten months' pay by the enemy. The rest depend upon such end as shall be taken with them of Huisden.” I believe they have some hidden purpose not yet fully discovered.
In the mean time I am ‘willed’ by men of good judgment to see the Briell and Flushing provided with all necessaries, which your lordship must have care of, for we here can do nothing for them, nor for Bergen nor Ostend.
“Sir Martin Shenk this while doth triumph about Bon, on both sides the river … It is said he hath of late driven back the enemy that came to besiege him and taken a town in Westphalia, where he had a great booty. The Baron of Creange is with him, who was warned by his brother not to come into Luxembourg for that he was laid for. It is said the Baron of Haupaix hath secret commission to levy some regiments of Swisses for the States, but I believe it not, nor think they will be able to maintain those they have, nor able to satisfy the soldiers mutinied without great shifting, so as they be ready to sink daily, as I take it; myself very unthankful to them, and therefore any other should do her Majesty here better service than myself…. I beseech you let me hear by your next what shall become of me.”—The Haghe, 8 February.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Ibid. f. 70.]
Arthur Champernowne to Henry ‘Kellegrey.’
I delivered such speeches as you willed me to Mr. Deventer, who took it very kindly. As for the mutinies at Huesden, he says they have sent to them, knowing what a place of annoyance it would be if it fell into the hands of the enemy, to exhort them not to let particular grudges or quarrels cause them to do what might be most hurtful to the whole country; “and that if it were not possible to reconcile them from whence they were fallen, that rather than to bend towards the enemy, they would cast themselves into the arms of her Majesty, whom they should find most gracious and ready to do them all pleasure….
“Mr. Treasurer's company of horse, coming into Swolle, were refused, so as lying … before the gates, attending the return of their lieutenant, who went away to seek more direction of the Grave van Meures, were charged in the night by 400 foot and a company of horse of the enemy Verdugo, Yorke being present. They slew and took prisoners sixty horse and men; the cornet was slain; a boy brought away the cornet; some twenty horse of the company are returned.”
“I did the message unto Lieut. Mathew Wraye.”—Utrike, 8 February, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland XXI. f. 74.]
H. Kyllygrew to Burghley.
I wrote yesterday to your honour [sic], and advertised you that the same day we were promised to have our instructions from the States General, “touching the form of their new manner of government, but it came not, nor [do] I think we shall have it before they hear out of England; but it seems to me in this mean time that it will not be for us to accept; for that those of Gueldres are departed, not yielding unto it, no more than they of Overyssel and those of Utrecht.
“I am told the States will remain as chief, and have the distribution of the treasure; and to allot to the Count Maurice and the Count William the government of Holland and Zeeland and of Friseland, leaving the other three provinces in effect to shift for themselves …” They are in good hope to pacify the mutinies of their soldiers, “for the chief in Huesden are the Count Maurice's bands of horsemen and footmen, as likewise those at Gertruydenberg be of Count Hohenlo's, and they of Worcum appertain to Count Philip of Nassau; which be the men the States rely most upon for the defence of their countries, with Count William in Friseland …”
They wonder that the enemy has done no enterprise against them since Sluys, not even during these mutinies, and some suspect that the mutineers have intelligence with them; “and of late a man of good account amongst them willed one that care might be taken for the sure guard of the Brill and Flushing, whereof I have given them warning again. I wax daily more jealous than other, seeing they be far behind hand; their soldiers unpaid, their garrisons unfurnished for the most, and yet seem to care so little for us. Now if they have intelligence with the enemy … then after they have appeased all their mutinies, and that of Medenblicq too (which I hear this morning they have done); and shall hear out of England that her Majesty will go on with peace, it is to be feared what they may attempt against our cautionary towns, which are not best provided of things necessary to abide a long siege; they being masters both by sea and land, to keep that no succour shall come to them.” They complain that our musters are not made according to contract, nor the payment of our soldiers, and I think they are persuaded they may recover their cautionary towns for half the money her Majesty lent them.
These of Holland use all means, “by hook and by crook” to get Utrecht assured to them. Lord Willoughby has gone thither this morning to see how things stand in that province. The treasurer of Zeeland has charged upon the captains of the English bands who came for the succour of Sluys certain quantities of victuals whereof I have desired them to set down the particulars, that our treasurer may deflect so much of their payment; which they have promised to do, but I fear it will come too late. When the treasurer was to discharge those companies, we asked what they had to charge them withal, when they said their accounts were not ready, and prayed him to keep some money in hand for that purpose, whereupon he kept some five pounds for each company; “but here the captains were to blame to receive victuals and their lendings too, as they were faulty in many other things not yet come to light.” The treasurer should be warned of this.—The Haghe, 9 February, 88.
Holograph. Add. Endd. by Burghley. 4 pp. [Holland XXI. f. 78.]
H. Kyllygrew to Sir Thomas Morgan.
Is very glad to hear that he is to be made governor of Bergen, and trusts he will be mindful of his friends and brothers in arms, particularly Mr. Lovell. He will find at his return very great wants, and will do well to make his provision in England. Has written to his brother to deliver money to him, which he knows will be brought over safely.
There is hope that the mutinies at Medenblick and other towns will shortly be appeased. Shinck is still at Bun where he daily does good service. The forces of the enemy increase rather than diminish.—Haghe, 9 February, stilo veteri.
Signed. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 81.]
Thomas Lovell to Walsingham.
In bounden duty I advertise you of the fickle estate of these countries, and the great likelihood of utter destruction to follow. I see disagreement and great likelihood of separation between the provinces. The General States of Overyssel departed without any satisfaction for the maintenance of their quarters against the enemy; as also the States of Gelderland and Utrecht; whereof some have informed me that the States of Holland sought their consent to make Grave Maurice absolute governor or Grave of Holland and Zeeland, which said States of Overyssel etc. willed those of Holland “to set down under writing in what manner and [by] what articles the government shall be ordered; which those of Holland denied, and departed without contentment or conclusion.”
The Grave of Hohenlo's government consists in these towns and fortresses (which are not without danger of falling into the hands of the enemy) viz: “Willemstad, Sevenbergen, Geertruydenberg, Bommel, Huesden, Worcum, and the houses of Lowestein, Hemert and Heel. Huesden is in great danger to be given over to the enemy, as the States will not give the soldiers four months' pay while the enemy will give them sixteen. Grave Hohenlo is in those quarters; whether he will pacify these mutinies is doubtful, but “daily he encroaches into as many towns as he can … Some of the wiser sort judges that his meaning is to make a peace for himself … and so to depart into Germany, from whence he is, for here he hath no land or sand. And there is of his counsel hath said that they need not her Majesty's help to make a peace for them, for they can make a peace themselves; may they have need of her help to make wars.”
There is a great mutiny at Medenblicq, where Mr. Dederick Snoye is governor, who is in great danger both of his person and of losing the town from the government of his Excellency, “for upon Wednesday and Thursday was a sevennight, the soldiers was in a great mutiny, and was like to murder the said Governor in the town.” On Saturday one of the burgomasters came here to Count Maurice, who on Monday departed himself towards Medenblicq, and on Tuesday Barnevelt and Dr. Francis went also, having with them, as I was told by a good friend, 50,000 gilders to give the said soldiers, to deliver up the governor and the town; but what they have brought to pass as yet we know not.
In fine, the Graves Maurice, Hohenlo and William of Friesland “seeketh nothing but to cut off the frontier towns etc., and to join in one, and in the end, I fear, to no great ‘furdelle’ and less profit of our commonwealth, which the Lord defend and preserve….”—Ssgraven Hage, 9 February, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holland XXI. f. 83.]
The States' Deputies to Walsingham.
Thanking him for his promise by Mr. Bornam to give them an interview at the earliest opportunity.
The Earl of Leicester informs them that their audience of her Majesty is to be tomorrow, after dinner. Meanwhile they send his honour the enclosed, although (if his convenience had served) they would have preferred to deliver them in person.
At the request of several merchants dwelling in Holland and Zeeland, they yesterday gave an account to his Excellency concerning two of their ships and merchandises taken in coming from Brazil and the Spanish islands by two merchant ships called the Merchant Royal and the Centurion, although they had passports from the High Admiral of England as well as from the Provinces. The said merchants being ready to give good and sufficient caution for the said goods to those who pretend a right to them, although they say they can make good their own claim, the deputies pray his honour to lend a helping hand that they may have good and speedy expedition in their request.—London, 10 February, 1588.
Signed by all three. Add. Endd. French. 1¾ pp. [Holland XXI. f. 85.]
“The wants of Ostend” on this date; viz. guns, shot, wheelbarrows, lead, powder; three more companies, and to have their weekly lendings with certainty, or a supply of victuals to hold the garrison contented.
“There remaineth in the town 33 last of corn, no other proportion of butter, cheese or other store,” and they need 200 muskets.
[Noted in the margin by Burghley with the amounts (apparently) which were to be sent; being much less than those asked for.]
Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 91.]
Cornille Coels to The Queen.
Although the Sieur de Combes some days ago presented to her certain Synonyms of some importance, which he doubts not but she has received, he has now charged the said Sieur with this present of “Ecclesiastes,” to be offered to her, and hopes to hear that it has been graciously accepted.—The Hague, 20 February, 1588 stilo novo.
Add. Endd. French. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 92.]
Extract of Act of the States of Utrecht and their protestation of this date, (fn. 1) sent to the States General. [Translation follows.]
Endd. French. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 96.]
“Copy of the States' of Utrecht Act touching their departure. Englished.”
“It is agreed that letters shall be written unto Mr. John Rengers requiring him that forasmuch as they begin to dissolve, and that the deputies of Overyssel are already departed, as also those of Gueldres, (the two principal frontier provinces), he shall likewise return home; declaring nevertheless and protesting that if the other three provinces that remain behind shall seek to hold still the assembly, and use the name of the States General, or conclude anything to the prejudice of the absent, being the one half of the whole number of the provinces, the same shall be void and of none effect; especially in any point that may concern those of Utrecht; who nevertheless are content to return the said Rengers or some other their deputy to the said assembly in case the two other provinces shall send thither again.
Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 97.]
“A view of the present state” of Brill.
“The town is in circuit, along the rampier, near 2500 paces; the ditch is large and deep, the rampire good and cannon free in every case where the cannon may be laid before it, and in those places, sufficiently well flanked. The earth is good and room enough to work against any open attempt” (as is shown by a plat of its present state). The country round may in two tides be laid under water, save at A and B. About the walls seven cannon in all are planted, “very evil mounted.” In the market place, three more well mounted. 4000 lb. of powder in the town and some match and lead.
In the town, the Governor's company, 200; Sir Henry Norris, and Capts. Vavasor, Hill and Brett, 150 each, which, with dead pays deducted, are 720 men.
In the two sconces outside the town, Sir John Burgh's company of 150. “The greater of these hath the ditch but five feet deep, towards the sea; the ground a firm sand; and may be battered within 40 yards from the sands by any power that may command the river. In these sconces are nine pieces of great artillery, but without platforms to serve to any purpose.” These sconces are of great importance to command the river and guard the haven, but they have no place for powder, munition or victual, but get it daily from the town.
The greatest want of town and garrison is money, “for the garrisons having been fourteen months without pay, the States complain that they are hindered in their most necessary services by forbearing the money they disburse in lendings.” The soldiers repine and are ready to mutiny, being without all things save victuals, and these now “grown so scarce and dear by transporting them to the enemy as their lendings will not serve them to that end only.
“The Captains have neither ability nor credit to help them. The burgers have to credit them further. The magistrates depend on the States and therefore care not how weary the commons grow of them.
“There is no provision or store of victual, weapons or other munitions, saving the small quantity of powder, lead and match as is before set down.
“In all which my lord Governor doth humbly entreat your Honour's order.”
Endd. 1½ pp. [Holland XXI. f. 98.]
“A Memorial for the Deputies of the States.”
Her Majesty having lately been informed of some rigorous proceedings used as well to the town and province of Utrecht, as also to the persons of Col. Snoy, Groenvelt and others devoted to her service (or rather the service of those countries); “having in respect of the assistance given unto them embarked herself into a most dangerous and chargeable war,” finds it very strange that such a hard course should be taken against those who ought to be used with all favour; to show the world their thankful acceptation and requital of her princely favours to them.
Finding her honour greatly touched by such proceedings, she looks to receive present reparation thereof, by stay of the severe proceedings against the parties aggrieved, and also that they may be used with all favour as good patriots, and devoted unto a Prince that for their defence is content to employ most bountifully such means as it hath pleased God to give her.
First, for the town of Utrecht, she looks that according to the 27th article of her contract with the States, “the deciding of those differences should be referred unto her or her Governor General, with the assistance of the Council of State there; and therefore doth wish that either they would grow unto some union amongst themselves, by the mediation of her governor there and the Council of State, or else that some persons on both sides, indifferently named, may be sent fully instructed in the variances now resting between them, that thereupon her Majesty may take full knowledge thereof, and set down such order therein as shall be agreeable to equity and justice, and profitable unto the universal state of those countries.
“And for the accident lately happened at Leyden, where divers were charged with a conspiracy to have practised the delivery of that town into the hands of the Earl of Leicester, Lieutenant-General at that time, who protesteth that there was never any such thing intended; whereof there is no probability …: forasmuch as there cannot any sufficient reparation be made for the lives of those three which have been already executed,—held in the general opinion of all good persons as innocent—yet her Highness looketh that the most hard and rigorous sentence pronounced against the rest of banishment and confiscation of their goods should by some public act be revoked and made void.
“For the second, that they shall not only forbear to proceed in their hard dealings against Col. Snoy, Groenvelt and the rest known to be well affected unto her Majesty, but shall take present order that the said Snoy, Groenvelt and the rest shall be well entreated by them, and continued in their former charges; and shall also see them well and duly paid, as any other garrisons serving under them in the said countries; for that it is to be looked for … that such kind of violent courses may force them to take desperate resolutions, and thereby lay open to the enemy the disunion that reigneth amongst themselves, which cannot but speedily work their utter ruin and overthrow.
“And therefore her Majesty, in case they shall not yield her satisfaction in this behalf, … shall be forced to withdraw that support and assistance which she presently yieldeth them, and leave them to their own defence.
Her Majesty has given special direction in these things to Lord Willoughby and Mr. Killigrew, to be by them imparted to the States General in her name; and also looks that the Deputies shall send them a copy or duplicate of this Memorial. (fn. 2)
Draft, corrected by Walsingham. 4½ pp. [Holland XXI. f. 102.]