Introduction

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Institute of Historical Research

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R. A. Roberts (editor)

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1899

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'Introduction', Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House, Volume 8: 1598 (1899), pp. III-XXX. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=111724 Date accessed: 25 July 2014.


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Contents

Introduction.

For the third time the material furnished by the Cecil papers for one year suffices to fill a volume. The period embraced in it, namely, January 1597/8 to December 1598, or the year 1598 according to modern acceptation, was a period differing somewhat in character from the preceding decade. It was in the main a year of the making of peace rather than the waging of war, and, in particular, during its course no hostile expedition left either the Spanish coasts directed against England or the English coasts directed against Spain. As regards English concerns abroad and at home, three events or series of events conspicuously mark the year, namely—taking them in their order of time,—the special mission of Sir Robert Cecil and others joined with him to the King of France consequent upon the negotiations for peace proceeding between France and Spain; the death of the Queen's aged, tried and trusted, great Minister of State, Sir William Cecil, first Lord Burghley; and the temporarily successful rebellion of the Earl of Tyrone in Ireland.

Ireland.
With regard to the last of these topics, the “broken state of Ireland, most desperate and full of rebellion” (p. 381), it will be sufficient and convenient to say at once that it is not until the latter part of the year, several weeks subsequent to the defeat of Sir Henry Bagenall at Armagh, that letters and papers bearing upon it appear in this collection, but that in the last three months they are fairly numerous. They will be read and used, of course, in conjunction with the more voluminous documents deposited in the Public Record Office, and fully dealt with in the published Calendar of State Papers, Ireland, for the year 1598, edited by Mr. E. G. Atkinson.

Sir Robert Cecil's Embassy to the French King.
In connexion with the embassy of Sir Robert Cecil, several lengthy despatches are given in the succeeding pages, but they are not now printed for the first time, as they are contained in Birch's “Historical View of the Negotiations between England, France and Brussels.” It has been thought, however, that their repetition here from authentic contemporary copies might not be unacceptable to students. In addition, there is a certain amount of minor correspondence connected with the mission. Associated with Cecil were Sir Thomas Wilkes, Clerk of the Council, who had been sent on many previous diplomatic errands, but whose last this was to prove, and Dr. John Herbert, Master of the Requests. The journey from Dover to Dieppe was made in tempestuous weather in February. On landing in France Cecil was delayed for a time by the illness of his colleague, Sir Thomas Wilkes, who got no farther than Rouen. From Rouen Cecil proceeded to Paris, and after some delay there, vainly awaiting directions from England, he and Dr. Herbert followed the King of France into Brittany, “not a little vexed” at the necessity (p. 90), “the youngest of us both being not humorous now of novelties.” As for poor Sir Thomas Wilkes, he, indeed, would fain have been spared the journey altogether. After his “great voyages and charges incurred therein,” he had hoped, he says (p. 6), to, have been employed for the future at home only. “Truly, Sir,” he writes to Cecil, “such an employment could not have been laid upon me in a more unseasonable time than this, for I protest unto you I am in effect unfurnished of all things needful for such a voyage, and no money in my purse to make provision, which, with the shortness of the time appointed for your departure hence, doth amaze me not a little.” But the satisfaction to be obtained from a period of quiet employment at home was denied him. Not many weeks after he had thus expressed himself his life's journey ended at Rouen.

To attempt a complete view of this embassy and the negotiations connected with it, based upon the papers in this volume, would be premature, such a task being proper rather to the introduction to the Calendar of State Papers, Foreign, preserved in the Public Record Office, when that Calendar shall reach this period. It will be sufficient now to point out that the Hatfield papers of this year furnish a portion of the material for the complete history of these matters.

The United Provinces.
A similar remark applies to the more voluminous papers which appear here arising out of the relations between England and the Estates of the Low Countries, “our only constant and able friends,” as Lord Essex describes them (p. 170). George Gilpin, the English Resident at the Hague, and Sir Francis Vere are the principal authors of this correspondence; but among writers of other letters and papers coming under this head are Sir Edward Norreys, Governor of Ostend, Captain William Constable, John Chamberlain, and Sir Henry Docwra. A few emanate also from the States General themselves, from the Deputies sent by them to England, and from Count Maurice of Nassau. Early in January of this year deputies were appointed by the States General to visit England and France simultaneously (p. 13), with the object of “labouring” to break off the negotiations that had been begun between the King of France and the Archduke Albert, who was still (notwithstanding his surrender of the Cardinal's hat) most frequently referred to as “the Cardinal.” Tempestuous weather and contrary winds were the alleged causes of the delay of the journeys of both parties of deputies until the month of March. The apprehensions raised in the minds of the Dutch by the prospect of the Queen of England making peace with Spain were such that, in order to prevent it (p. 54), they were prepared to “agree to any reason should be demanded of them.” Indeed, the mere fact that negotiations were on foot seemed to them (p. 61) full of danger. Nor did they alone hold this opinion. Gilpin writes (p. 62), “Assuredly, whosoever makes other reckoning (if either peace or truce be made) but that the Cardinal will establish his estate, and then break off at his pleasure when he shall see his time; and that of those presently united provinces, the greater part will remain on his side rather than to serve for frontiers and be subject again to such misery as they have endured afore, doth neither know the state of these countries nor the humours of the people.” The reasons urged upon the Queen by the Dutch Deputies in England against the step they deprecated are set forth in a paper to be found on p. 84. The fear entertained by the Dutch was not so much (p. 190) lest peace might be made between France and Spain, as that “the Queen should be induced to incline to it.” “All their minds ran on her Majesty's favour and aid” (p. 193). Yet the task of persuading the various provinces to agree to her demands was not altogether easy. Deputies (p. 193) were despatched by the States General to the different provinces, which, writes Gilpin, “never use to agree to anything in general without the knowing of more particulars, and then is there also difficulty enough, especially in money matters.” Another observer remarks (p. 197) that the letters of a favourable tone from England were as good as “any costly water to the comforting heart and stomach, these men being fully possest that her Majesty resolutely would make peace with their enemy, and they contrariwise resolved rather to see all consumed with fire and water than to trust to any promises the Spaniard had [made] or should make them, and thereby become at his discretion and kindness.” This person's own view, however, was that the Queen had great reason to accept the peace offered her, seeing how the Dutch, “whose the war originally is,” enriched themselves by traffic with their own enemy. Of all the provinces concerned, Holland was the most resolute in its purposes. Rumour said (p. 202) that this province would proceed with the war whatever course others might take.

In the Spanish Netherlands, at Brussels and Antwerp, after the proclamation of the peace concluded between the Kings of France and Spain, there were great feastings and solemnities in celebration of it. The particulars of two Spanish “jests of the country” are given. The first at Brussels, where

Dumb Show at Brussels.


was a dumb show representing the French King and the Cardinal, who after long wars fell to a treaty. While they are conferring, in cometh a lady, and conveys herself behind the French King, and pryeth what they say, expressing much perturbation at it, sometimes fawning and sometimes flattering and plucking the French King by the sleeve. In the meantime, one of the minions begins to chafe, enquiring what she is that presumes so near. Where it is gestured she is the Queen of England. So they whisper and laugh at the conceipt. With that there come in four or five fellows dressed like boors, and begin to press to the place and interrupt the treaty. Whereupon the Cardinal enquires what they are, and they are described to be boors of Holland. Whereat the King laughs at the rudeness of the poor men. But the Cardinal gestures he will hang them all up so soon as he hath done with his great business.

Upon which the indignant comment of the relator is, “So we are mocked by them while we treat of peace.”

The other Spanish “jest” on the same theme, as played at Antwerp, consisted of

At Antwerp.


a solemn meeting (as the report goeth) of a Pope and Spanish King, whom the French King came likewise to visit and make friendship with, and was admitted without much ceremony to receive him or no. Next after him cometh a gallant and princely woman's person, clothed, virgin-like, all in white, royally crowned, holding in her hand a posy, which she showed herself willing to give them a smell


and scent of might she likewise be admitted to their feast and company, and so at last was, with more difficulty than the first. Next unto her come two, both apparelled in blue, one better than the other, but with a cat upon his shoulder crying “maw,” “maw,” to show, who carried him. The other clown like, with a great cheese under his arm. Both these offered, with great care and desire too, what they had to be brought near the rest, but without any respect these were denied, and, being at last importunate, were with cords drawn out of the room, which the Hollanders censure as a sign of the King's meaning towards Count Maurice and themselves.

Testimony is given to the determined spirit of the Dutch people by more than one observer. Dr. Fletcher, who was at the Hague conducting negotiations with the States General on behalf of the Society of Merchant Adventurers, reports (p. 238) that the effect of the resolution arrived at by the States General was never to submit themselves to the King of Spain, though, if the whole authority and absolute government of their country were left to them in the form then established, they might be content to yield him a large pension such as might well beseem a king. With regard to the political state of the country, as the result of many particular observations, he had formed the opinion that, “being an oligarchy of a few persons and of a degree but equal to those over whom they rule, they are much subject to many schisms and emulations among themselves, and discontentment of their provinces and common people, who repine much at their great burdens, and are distracted with many sects and opinions in religion, specially four; the least whereof (touching number, both in their cities and smaller towns) is the profession of that religion which is authorised. And therefore, in case they have not some superior (though no commander, yet an admonisher and moderator) to rectify their affairs, and to keep their provinces and States General in good correspondence one with the other, it may be feared they cannot long continue their state, but it will decline to one superior, or to divers cantons and divisions, as before it was.”

The commercial prosperity of the country, shown by the strength of the Dutch shipping, greatly impressed this traveller. Another visitor to the “little country,” who has already been quoted, saw it, as he says (p. 198), “full of cities and towns, and those swarming with people that live by daily trade and water labour.”

In July the States General despatched deputies a second time to England to announce to the Queen the resolutions they had now agreed to, namely, to give her such satisfaction as it was possible for them to make. They were above everything anxious to obtain a continuance of the Queen's assistance, or even her mere countenance (p. 256), and for this they were prepared to offer “round sums” on condition that the money should be paid by yearly instalment. Vere brought back with him from the Hague a report that if the possession of the cautionary towns were restored to them upon such re-imbursement as their State was able to bear, and the Queen would favour them underhand, they would hope and endeavour to maintain themselves. But although there was a strong war party in the Dutch Assembly, there were some who were inclined to peace, and Vere was of opinion that this difference of humour, if the Queen did not by her protection of them “atone it,” would be the ruin of their estate. The people in general in the summer of this year were evidently in great perplexity. Sir Edward Norreys writes at this time from Ostend (p. 281), “We have here no certainty of anything, no preparation for war, and yet no assurance of peace.”

From the end of July there is an interval of silence of a couple of months as regards matters connected with the Low Countries. The Archduke returned to Spain to consummate his marriage with the Infanta, leaving the Spanish army under the command of his kinsman, Don Francisco de Mendoza, the Almirante of Arragon. Then towards the end of September, the curtain rises, shewing (p. 356) the Spanish army and the army of the Allies watching one another in the neighbourhood of the Rhine and the Meuse. “They are entrenched lest we should attempt anything of them, and we are lodged in an island lest they should offend us. . . . . . The enemy is strong, and we are but weak, yet one army fears the other.” Sporting proclivities appear then, as ever, among the Englishmen in the army there. “Our service yet is in exercising our men with the remembrance of old Roman exercises, after which is finished, we should lie idle were it not that we have a cast of hawks in the English regiment, which doth some time refresh our spirits.” Count Maurice lay like a watch dog, closely observing the opposing army, resolved not to force a fight on account of his weakness (p. 369), yet ready, if the enemy moved a step, to follow, in “good hope” of being able to relieve any town distressed, or to annoy the enemy's convoys.

So matters remained for a while “without more performed than usual incursions of the soldiery, notwithstanding some towns and forts assailed, surprised and yielded to the enemy's devotion almost within the report of cannon” (p. 399); but on the 19th of October, Count Maurice “honourably broke the ice and gave the enemy the first blow.” The “enemy,” however, at this time (p. 403) was meeting with success in his dealings with towns like Wesel, Xanten, &c., levying contributions from them, and obtaining assistance for his progress, “coming nearer and nearer (p. 404), leaving no strength behind him which may serve his turn,” Count Maurice, meanwhile, continuing at one place, and fortifying it daily. Sir Francis Vere, who was at this time still in England, was “very much wished for to assist his Excellency,” the people there “reposing a very great trust in” him (p. 404).

On November 3rd the expectant Dutch were able to welcome Vere on his return, and he and Gilpin immediately set about the prosecution of the business of negotiation with the States General on the Queen's behalf with which they had been entrusted (p. 423), namely, “the reforming of the late ratification and the giving better security for the 800,000l.” In the interval “the enemy” had taken Doetinchem, “upon composition with small resistance,” “our” army moving from one strong quarter to another, finally being lodged between Doesburg and the River Yssel, “where we hope they will both save themselves and that town, which otherwise were in great danger.” With regard to this game of move and countermove, Sir Henry Docwra, when the Dutch army, according to its habit, had fortified itself at Doesburg, expressed (p. 432) the general satisfaction at having thus secured the place to its own great advantage, and corresponding “admiration” of the error of the enemy in not being beforehand, “which, with excellent commodity, they might well have done, but they thought to have Dottechem first, and then to have come timely enough before this.” Thus foiled, the Spanish commander turned back again up into the country. “Many opportunities of doing service upon the enemy have been omitted,” continues Docwra, “as we could ever discover when we saw the manner of their lodging after they were gone, but the care of reserving us for the next year's service, by which the States promise themselves great hopes, hath hitherto hindered it.” A more detailed account of these movements of the two armies is given in a long letter from James Digges to Lord Essex (p. 434). This correspondent takes a gloomy view of the situation, “the enemy being likely to prevail (p. 436) very much in truth this next year unless it please Her Majesty to set in foot very royally in time to defend them, not able otherwise (unless miraculously) to defend themselves, notwithstanding their great riches, strength of towns and advantages of the waters and their shipping, unless also they be otherwise supplied with soldiers out of France, Scotland and Denmark, which is very unlikely.” It is not to be wondered at, therefore, that the recall of 2,000 English soldiers for service in Ireland produced a feeling of consternation, and led to protests (pp. 493, 502) from the States General and Count Maurice. Previous to this, however, it became apparent that the Commander of the Spanish forces was relaxing his efforts for the time, having accomplished less than “he made show of at the first” (p. 445), contenting himself with Berck (which on account of its distance and the fact that the plague was raging there could not be conveniently rescued or defended) and Doetinchem, a town weak and ill provided to withstand his forces. His plan of operations was reported to be, to place his forces in garrison in the nearer Cleveland and Munster towns in readiness for an advance when the frost should come; to which plan Count Maurice proposed to reply by filling the frontier towns with soldiers, fortifying the weaker places, and guarding the passages, he himself taking up his quarters at Arnhem (p. 467). “The States, the people, and we the soldiers,” adds Vere in another letter (p. 467), “are very sensible of the danger, so as we all pray there may be no hard frost this winter.”

In regard to the negotiations which Vere and Gilpin had in hand with the States General, after some difficulties which they set out in detail (p.443) and which were overcome by firm handling, on the last day of the year they report (p. 527) agreement on the part of the Dutch assembly to the Queen's demands, ratification of the treaty and delivery of the “bond.” With respect to the military situation, the various provinces had by this time combined to prosecute the war, the people had taken heart once more, greatly pleased that new levies were ordered and old companies reinforced. The Spanish commander was at Rees, on the Rhine, forcing the neutral towns to receive his garrisons. The dreaded frost having come, his eyes were turning towards the districts of the Betuwe and the Veluwe, lying between the Zuyder Zee and the Rhine, whereupon, to frustrate any move in that direction, Count Maurice intended to proceed towards Guelderland. It was in this quarter that most of the English forces lay. These, it was thought, his Excellency would unite with his own forces near some one place, besetting the passages as much as possible, the “Boors” being commanded to break the ice every day. And with matters in this position, the year 1598, as we now reckon it, came to a close.

France.
Although, as has been said, this is not the place to discuss in detail the French political history of the year, it will not be inappropriate to specify, briefly, the letters, &c., which relate to that stricken country and to refer to some of their contents. Early in the year, notwithstanding the expectations of peace and the secret negotiations for it which were proceeding, there were schemes of military operations afoot, the seat of the campaign lying in Brittany. Incidents of warfare there are related, such as the surprise of Dinan by the inhabitants of St. Malo (p. 46), who made a successful night attack upon it, and were reported to have cut to pieces its garrison of five hundred Spaniards. A curious but not very lucid account of this enterprise is contained in a letter from a certain Capt. Gode (p. 50) there in garrison. The letters of Captain Prynne also, “serving the Lord Marshal of Brysacke as his steward” (p. 81), describe the progress of the arms of the King of France in Brittany and the circumstances of the subjugation of the Duc de Mercœur. Neither Captain Gode nor Prynne had a very high opinion of the country of their residence or its inhabitants. The former writes, “For these French I do as little trust them as the Spaniard; if they do see their opportunity possible, they will pay us with the same payment which now they have done unto the King of Spain, for all the money and help they have had from him and us too . . . I write as I do think, and what I have said of them these thirty years, this nation never deceived me, for that I did never trust them; I know they do deal underhand to save themselves.” Prynne, notwithstanding his comfortable situation (p. 100), would rather have been in England “with brown bread” than in his lord's house with all that he enjoyed. There are other letters describing events in Brittany (p. 101). In this connexion must also be mentioned the letters of John Colville, who was at this time in France, the Earl of Essex's “only sentinel” there (p. 139) “for the Scottish practices with the enemy,” but whose letters nevertheless contain news of a more purely French character. Then there is a series of “French advertisements” or “advices,” which were received by the Earl of Essex and contain accounts of the political events, &c., in France. The letters of Thomas Edmondes, the English Resident in France, number in this volume two only, and those (pp. 488, 489) written in the last month of the year.

The Borders of Scotland.; Valentine Thomas.
A certain number of papers illustrative of affairs proceeding on the Borders of Scotland and of the condition of the north country—in “desperate state,” having “dangerous, malicious and active opposers, and weak, disagreeing and unactive defenders”—form a useful addition to the Border Papers existing and arranged in the Public Record Office, and calendared by Mr. Joseph Bain. The first of the papers coming under this head is a letter (p. 2) from Sir Robert Carr, of Cesford, the Scottish acting Warden of the Middle March, to Thomas Percy, constable of Alnwick, which under cover of the use of sporting terms refers no doubt to much more serious business. The only other letter from him here is one to Sir Robert Carey, English Warden of the Middle March (p. 87), stating his views as to the means likely to secure “the most assured band of quietness.” William Selby, the gentleman porter of Berwick, who had unwillingly received into his custody the laird of Buccleuch, addresses an urgent petition (p. 23) to Lord Burghley to be relieved of his troublesome charge, “for myself can never be from him, which is loss unto me concerning my businesses and very hurtful for my health.” Edward Gray, constable of Morpeth, “employing his diligence” in the carrying out of directions given him by Lord Eure, when the latter on his departure to the south made Gray his deputy Warden, was the means of arresting that Valentine Thomas whom Camden characterises as “the man most distained of foule facts” who tried to make mischief between Queen Elizabeth and the King of Scots. The reason of this man's arrest was not merely, as Camden seems to imply, a charge of theft, but that Gray had received information (p. 77) that he was “a great intelligencer and dealer with the King of Scots touching the matters of State,” and it was a Scottishman, Robert Crawforth, one of his companions, who was first caught by the constable and by whose means Valentine Thomas was afterwards betrayed into the constable's hands, who made the accusation of horse stealing, well or ill-founded as the case may be. Robert Crawforth's examination enclosed in this letter of Gray's is in the Border Papers (see Calendar, Vol. II., p. 520). One Thomas Madryn, who put forward by way of apology for his “false English” or “simple manner of speech” the fact that he was a Welshman, was subsequently a chance companion in imprisonment of this Valentine Thomas, by whom he was fed with information about the practices of Catholics in the North of England, which was duly retailed to the Earl of Essex (p. 152). And with it, Thomas's “vile speeches of my Lord Treasurer,” arguing, to Madryn's ideas, “the certainty of his bad mind.” Madryn also forwarded a copy of certain verses written by his companion with a coal upon the wall. They do not appear now to exist, but Madryn, with the confidence of a critic, expresses the opinion that if their author intended them for verse he was a “very poor poet.”

But to return to Border matters, from which this is somewhat of a digression, there is a long letter from Sir William Bowes (p. 314) describing an interview at Berwick with Sir Robert Carr and the subjects of their conversation, which took a wide range on this occasion; and a letter from Dr. Robinson, Bishop of Carlisle, on behalf of his poor tenants on the borders “greatly impoverished by the Scots”; and one or two others. In addition, there is a series of papers connected with the mission of John Udall to the North to investigate an offer “of some service to be done in Ireland” by a “nobleman or person of quality in Scotland,” made through the medium of Lancelot Carleton and Richard Grame, two individuals who make many appearances in the Calendar of Border Papers. They opened the matter to Udall, by whom it was brought to the knowledge of Sir Edward Dyer, who communicated the offer to Essex, by whom it was laid before the Queen (p. 78). Her Majesty was not averse from this person's employment in the manner proposed, but as he was at the first utterly unknown to her and to her ministers, Udall was despatched with full instructions to enquire into his qualifications (which were necessarily to be valour, wisdom, secrecy, and freedom from all suspicion of cleaving to the popish and Spanish party in Scotland) and into all the other bearings of the business. The unknown nobleman would appear to have been the Earl of Argyle and the agent actually to be employed by him in the enterprise, Sir James Maclean of the Isles (p. 88), who “depended altogether” upon his lordship (p. 150), and whose readiness to undertake the service was made known to Carleton and Grame by James Douglas, the Laird of Spott, “a wise, learned and religious man.”

There is little doubt that this is the proposal which Lancelot Carleton, four years afterwards, when making a proposal of somewhat similar character (see Cal. of Border Papers, Vol. II., p. 792), refers to as the offer on the part of Maclean, for a reasonable sum of money, to deliver the Earl of Tyrone in England, alive or dead, within half a year of the conclusion of the pact, his own son to be pledge for the performance of his promise, and the son's life to be the penalty for failure. “Nothing was done before Maclean was killed,” we read in that later letter of Carleton's, “and so there was an end of that,” but the history of the negotiations, so far as they went, is told by Udall in this volume in letters to the Earl of Essex, which also contain some information pertaining to Scottish proceedings and practices generally. The negotiations came to nothing; and Udall received instructions (p. 170) to come away when he would, the Queen having resolved to give no more credit to the “overture.”

This mission to the North Country, on which Udall was sent by the Earl of Essex “in hope to mould him for better purposes than to post with the packet,” furnished him with material for “A description of the state and government, together with the land as it lieth, in and upon the West Marches of England,” which he drew up and laid before the Queen (p. 562). It contains a detailed account of the people, “barbarous more of will than manners,” and their customs and character, and of the nature of the country, and suggestions for their better government and defence. On the subject of relations with the Scottish kingdom he urges (p. 564) that the Queen “should hold good correspondence with the King, at least for the form;” and that the Earl of Argyle should “be dealt withal for the general services with honourable compliments which will most draw him on.”

Lord Burghley.
For the biographies of individual Englishmen this volume contains perhaps a more than ordinary amount of information, and with regard to the last days of that great Englishman who in respect of real influence in the kingdom was second only to the Queen—Lord Burghley,—whose death, indeed, may be described as the chief event in the domestic history of the year, there are some not uninteresting particulars. At the end of March, when Sir Robert Cecil was absent in France, one of Lord Burghley's servants writes (p. 102), “My lord your father hath many sudden fits and qualms since his last extremity of sickness, and at this instant he is sore vexed with the gout, and taketh small rest. I could wish your speedy return for fear of the worst.” This ill-health had been continuous through the late Winter and early Spring months (p. 128), and on April 20 a warrant was issued (p. 138) licensing him to be absent on this account from the celebration of the feast of St. George by the Companions of the Order of the Garter. Removed in May from London (p. 162) to Theobalds, he was there able to be abroad most of the day despite the sharp weather. He continued to attend to business; a letter written by his own hand appears (p. 197) as late as June 7th, and doubtless this is not the last of a long series. Early in this month he was still wont to pass at least two hours every day in the open air (p. 205), and would have spent a longer time thus had it not been for the continuance of the “fresh” weather. He was not ill-pleased to be at Theobalds, “being very private, neither troubled with many visitations or many suitors.” About the middle of this month he was caught in a great shower of rain, the effects of which it was feared (p. 220) might interfere with his projected return to London. But early in July (p. 259) he was back again at his house in the Strand, not markedly indisposed, “if a man may judge by his colours in his face, which is very good, and his eye quick;” at this time dining “reasonable well,” and having “stomach reasonable good” at supper (p. 261). Towards the end of July, however, he was confined to his bed (p. 276), too weak to sit up. On July 26, after “a very evil night,” he complained much of swelling and soreness in his throat and mouth, and desired that one of the Queen's surgeons might be sent to him with as much speed as might be. He was now unable either to read letters or to sit up to do any business, and Dr. Gilbert and “Sergeant” Goodroose were in close attendance upon him. Two days later, it was reported (p. 280) that he had had a quiet night, without pain; his supper the night before had consisted of a little broth and “blamanger,” and it was hoped by his attendants that he would “fall to his meat” again, he having called for his ass's milk at 7 o'clock in the morning. But just a week afterwards he passed away from the scene of his earthly labours and influence, and on the same day letters of condolence begin to reach that son who was in a great measure to take his place in his public work for the State (p. 295). Among these is one of some interest from Dr. Goodman, Dean of Westminster (p. 301). Lord Burghley's death was sorrowfully felt by the members of his household (p. 296). His elderson and successor in the peerage, in a spirit of filial piety, opined (p. 307) that the preacher of the funeral sermon would have no need to be supplied with matter for it by the sons, having “a large field to gather flowers in.” The only allusion here to the manner in which the Queen took the loss of so trusted a servant, and this not very definite, is contained in a letter from Lord Shrewsbury, written (p. 437) some months after his death. A number of epitaphs on the deceased stateman were, as was to be expected, composed and communicated, not all, perhaps (p. 340), entirely dictated by disinterested motives. But there is no doubt that his death was regarded generally in all sincerity as “a public loss and great calamity.”

Sir Robert Cecil.
While the name of the younger and more famous of the deceased statesman's sons pervades, of course, this, as it did former volumes, the majority of the letters being addressed to him, a certain number of the papers have also a purely personal bearing. Those relating to his embassy to France have already been mentioned. Before Sir Robert started on this journey Archbishop Whitgift felt it to be incumbent upon himself (p. 39), failing opportunity to see Cecil, to “visit” him “with these my letters, only to testify my true affection and unfeigned love towards you for your just deserts and continued kindness towards me.” The Earl of Essex, too, Cecil's rival, sends a special messenger with a letter, who was also charged (p. 42) to see Cecil's safe passage, and to bring him news of it. “I am thus curious,” he writes, “of all whom either. I value in judgment or love with affection, and therefore I must be double careful of yourself,” sentiments that were politely expressed even if, as is not unlikely, they lacked depth of sincerity. The following day Essex tells Cecil in another letter (p. 44), “I find her Majesty wonderful kind to you, and she is pleased that I take notice of it. You may believe I both am glad to know it, and will, with my best endeavours, continue her in that humour.” Sir Edward Wotton, in the expression of his sentiments, is laconic but emphatic (p. 128) :—“My Lord Ambassador, only three words : I love, I honour you unfeignedly.” The step-brothers were on kindly terms the one with the other. The elder, the second Lord Burghley, when sending a present of a falcon to his younger brother, adds at the close of his letter (p. 468), “I wish you will command anything of delight of mine that shall give you contentment.”

If falconry was one of Sir Robert's delights, it would appear that he was also not indifferent to music. “One Henry Phillipps,” on his return from the Low Countries (p. 498), made an effort to enter the service of Sir Percival Hart, who, pleased with the applicant's skill and moved by his own “desire unto music,” was about to accept him, when discovering that Phillipps “lately appertained to” Cecil, he deemed proper to communicate with the latter before receiving the musician into his own service. Then it came to light that Master Phillipps had been in Sir Robert's household and had departed without leave or licence, and Sir Robert thereupon “signified his pleasure to have him sent up.” Sir Percival was on the point of complying, but finding the young man not only weak with sickness but unwilling for his “lewdness” to face his former master, suggested the despatch of one of Cecil's servants to use persuasion in lieu of any violent means, promising in the meanwhile to exercise such watchfulness as “one of his fleeting condition” required. The truant musician was not singular in fearing Sir Robert's anger. The temper of the Queen's Chief Secretary was not such as to allow a fault to pass unnoticed (p. 344), as Sir Ferdinando Gorges, Stallenge and others at Plymouth (pp. 348, 349, 353) discovered. Nor would he brook any disrespect to the dignity of his position. The Fellows of Trinity Hall, Cambridge, making answer by word of mouth only, instead of by a formal written communication, to a letter signifying her Majesty's pleasure with regard to the election of the Master of the College brought by an ordinary messenger of the Chamber, were sharply called to account (p. 221) for the indiscretion, and at once made haste to offer the necessary apologies (pp. 224, 231).

Cecil family.
In Herefordshire, at a place properly called Allt-yr-ynys but appearing under many curious forms of spelling, dwelt a connexion of the statesman, one William Cecil. He died in the spring of 1598, leaving a numerous family of daughters and a still larger number of descendants in the next degree (p. 175). On his death, “wishing to continue the name of Cecil in that house,” he conveyed his property to Sir Robert Cecil and his heirs “in disinherison of his own issue.” One Paul Delahay, who describes himself as the “servant” of Sir Robert Cecil, married a daughter of this William Cecil, and, apparently by arrangement with his “master” (p. 272), assumed control of the property left by his father-in-law. His account of the manner in which the “funerals” were “celebrated” is interesting and will bear quotation :—

A funeral.


First, 6 poor men of that parish in gowns went before the coffin; next to them, the preacher James Ballard, a prebend [ary] of the church of Hereford, and a Cecil by descent, in his mourning gown, accompanied with my uncle Perry, of Morehampton, followed. Next to them the coffin, covered with black cloth, whereupon 12 scutcheons of Cecils', Perrys', and Harbetts' arms were fastened, three of which I commend to you, and carried by 6 of my father-in-law's men in black unto the church yard, and then by 6 of his sons-in-law into the church. After the coffin followed his 8 sons-in-law in mourning cloaks and answerable apparel, and three of his nephews. After followed Matthew's wife, the 8 daughters, and my father-in-law's sister Alice, in mourning attire. His wife refused to be present, albeit requested and a gown's cloth sent her. The church was hanged with black cloth and the assembly was such that the church could not contain them. After dinner there was a dole of 2d. bread and 2d. in money given to every poor person, being then in number 440. The next day a dole of 1d. bread and 1d. in money was given to every poor person, being then in number 140; and so in worshipful manner was the funerals celebrated to your lordship's commendations, for that to the credit of the house of Alterinis I gave out the charge to be yours, which amounteth to 100l. and mo.

The “funerals” over in the “decent” manner prescribed by the fashion of the country and the times, and the will having been perused, acute family dissensions immediately followed. On one side were ranged, it would seem, two of the sons-in-law, Delahay and one Hugh Monyngton; on the opposite side, other sons-in-law and probably the rest of the family (p. 175). Delahay brings charges of misconduct against both the female and male members of the family into which he had married (pp. 165, 272), and, on the other hand, is himself complained against (p.175) by the opposing section. No doubt the circumstances were such as were certain to excite a pretty family quarrel, and both sides carried their complaints to Sir Robert Cecil.

Cecil pedigrees.
The first Lord Burghley was greatly interested in the family genealogy. This volume contains references to many pedigrees, etc. (pp. 287–288, 553) compiled by his own hand.

Earl of Essex.
There is no information of peculiar interest with regard to the Earl of Essex. The year 1598, in contrast with the two years which preceded it, did not witness his departure at the head of an imposing force on some foreign expedition which was to cause the fame of his achievements to resound throughout the world. Instead, it was a year passed at home in disappointment and ill-temper, in the course of which he made himself, for a month or two, an exile from the Queen's presence, having been first “chased” from it by her Majesty (p. 318) in an unpleasantly emphatic manner. Thereupon, he was plunged into “deadest melancholy,” out of which “duty” alone sufficed to rouse him “when the unhappy news came from yonder cursed country of Ireland.” Then, indeed, he posted up to Court and made offer first of his attendance and afterwards of his “poor” advice in writing—to discover that both were rejected because he had previously refused to give counsel when requested so to do. He ingeniously defends himself for this refusal (p. 318), and avows himself as still waiting to attend the Queen's commandment. Before the year closed he had succeeded in procuring for himself a new-opportunity of distinction, the chief direction of the attempt about to be made to subdue the flame of rebellion kindled in Ireland by “the son of smith,” who had already beaten the Queen's armies there, and was on the way to conquer a kingdom for himself. No sooner was his designation to this enterprise known than numerous candidates for service under him presented themselves. His military reputation was great. To a bishop, who sought a type in Old Testament history, he seemed (p. 521) “a Joshua with us in fighting our battles”; to a layman looking for a model among classical heroes, he was (p. 561) “the Scipio and sword of England.” What his reputation in Europe was is again emphasized by the status of his correspondents. Catherine de Bourbon, “Madame” of France, addresses him as “a cousin and dear friend” (p. 73); the King her brother takes every possible opportunity of testifying his “affection” (p. 222) or assuring the Earl of his good will (pp. 355, 388). The Duc de Biron expresses his desire (p. 321) to retain Essex's good favour and to give evidence of the honour and respect which he entertained towards him. His reputation among his own countrymen is thus summed up in a congratulatory letter on his appointment as Chancellor of the University of Cambridge (p. 370) : “Let the chronicles of our land be perused, and I think it will hardly be found that there hath been any subject, especially of those years that your Honour has yet come into, clothed with so much honour, and girded with so much authority as you are.” But this great honour and authority notwithstanding, it was clearly not enough to satisfy his own ambition. He writes to the Queen (p. 416), “I must in this paper put your Majesty in mind that you have denied me an office which one of my fellows so lately and so long enjoyed, besides many things else. . . . If therefore your Majesty give it not at all, the world may judge, and I must believe, that you overthrow the office because I should not be the officer. If you give it to any other, of what quality soever, I must say—O! infelix virtus, quam tu levis umbra et nudum tantum nomen es : nam cum ego te semper coluerim, tu fortune servieras.”

A certain Welsh lady tells a long and woeful story of the misdeeds of the Earl's representatives in a remote corner of Wales (p. 422) and appeals to him for redress. She alleged that use was made of his name by his steward and other officers to cover general oppression. “Most of those that wears your Honour's cloth in this country is to have your Honour's countenance, and to be sheriffs, lieutenants, stewards, subsidy-men, searchers, sergeants on the sea, mustermen—everything is fish that comes to their net.” But this correspondent, having a particular grievance of her own, and her statements being unsupported by any other evidence so far as appears in this volume, it is difficult to estimate the amount of credence to be given to her statements.

Earl of Southampton.
Another noble courtier who this year fell under the Queen's grievous displeasure, one in whom the Earl of Essex took an affectionate interest, was Henry Wriothesley, the second Earl of Southampton, known to fame as the patron of Shakespeare. He had been a volunteer in Essex's expedition to Cadiz in 1596, and vice-admiral in Essex's abortive voyage of the following year. In 1598 he had reached the age of 25, and as was not then uncommon among young noblemen, his circumstances had become embarrassed and his creditors were troublesome. There were also other debts owing which he distinguishes (p. 357) as having been contracted “by following the Queen's Court.” To escape from his pecuniary difficulties, he had adopted the plan of letting to farm “that poor estate” which remained to him after four years' full control of it, with a view of paying his debts, and reserving only such portion as would “maintain himself and a very small train” during his travels, had betaken himself abroad. And, for the first stage of his journey, which was intended ultimately to extend to Italy, to Paris, where he is discovered by these papers in August, 1598 (p. 313). Residing in Paris he had found two “pleasing companions,” old friends, Sir Charles and Sir Henry Davers, who were passing there their time of exile on account of the part they had taken in the death of Henry Long, and who doubtless recalled the cheerless wintry days of January, 1595, when he had done something to assist their escape (see part V. of this Calendar, pp. 84–90). He had intended to make the younger of the two brothers the companion of his journey to Italy, a country of which he himself was entirely ignorant, but just at this juncture the efforts of the Davers's friends to secure their pardon and permission for them to return to England reached a successful issue. So while they availed themselves of this welcome opportunity, Southampton was kept waiting in Paris in the hope that the friend whose companionship he so much desired, the loss of which would be, as he expresses it, an “exceeding maim” to him, would be able in due time to rejoin him, and that they might then proceed together. Another person of some historic note was also at this moment in Paris, namely Henry Cuff, and him Southampton had detained there until his own departure for that quarter of Europe from which Cuff was now on his way home to England (see part VII. of this Calendar, p. 524). During the period of his enforced stay in Paris, notwithstanding that he had chosen voluntary exile mainly in order to retrench, Lord Southampton allowed himself some costly amusement. An observer (p. 358) remarks that if he did not depart from France “in a few days” he would ruin himself. He was gaming for high stakes, at “paulone.” The Duc de Biron won 3,000 crowns from him in a short time. He was the object of general ridicule, and therefore this friendly onlooker anxiously begs that Essex might be prompted to do Southampton the good turn of getting him away at an early moment, to save him from the loss of all his money and reputation “in France as well as in England;” for which result, adds the informant (p. 356), “I should be very sorry, knowing that the Earl of Essex loves him.”

The call home came, however, not because it was necessary to withdraw him from the seductions of ruinous high play in Paris, but because, before he had left England, he had yielded to seductions of another kind, the personal attractions of one of the Queen's maids of honour, Lord Essex's cousin, Mistress Elizabeth Vernon, and had married her without the Queen's previous knowledge and permission. The newly-made husband himself at first inclined to think lightly of any offence which he might have given by his secret marriage. “I trust,” he writes (p. 353), “that as my offence is but small, so her anger will not be much, and so consequently that it will not be very difficult to get my pardon.” He communicated the fact of his marriage to the Queen by means of a letter from Paris to Sir Robert Cecil, but she already knew of it before she could have received this letter (see S.P. Dom. Eliz., cclviii. 47). The secret out, Southampton's friend, Lord Cobham, at once urged him to return, giving as his reasons (p. 355) that “the exception that is now taken is only your contempt to marry one of her maids and to acquaint her withal; but for any dishonour committed by your lordship, that conceit is clean taken away, so that your lordship hath no manner of cause to doubt any disgrace but, for some time, absence from Court, which, I hope, will not be long before it be restored to you. If you should forbear to come, I assure you it would aggravate the Queen, and put conceits into her which at this present she is free of.” Like all Queen Elizabeth's courtiers, Lord Southampton professed that her displeasure was that which he deprecated above everything else (p. 353), and “the fear of it more grievous than any torment he could think of.” Some time during the month of September he appears to have paid a secret visit to London (p. 373), chiefly to see Lord Essex. This may be the “coming over very lately and the returning again very contemptuously” referred to by Cecil in the letter in which he communicates to the offender the Queen's pleasure that he should at once make his way back (see S. P. Dom. Eliz. Vol. cclviii. 47). When he had received this intimation of the Queen's mind with regard to his conduct, “news unexpected and nothing welcome” (p. 357), he was humble enough. But he begged Lord Essex's advice whether he should obey at once, this “so sudden return being a kind of punishment” which (in view of the condition of his purse, as he intimates, though this was the very moment when he was playing for high stakes and losing heavily) he imagined it was not her Majesty's will to lay upon him. The advice given was doubtless the same as that given by Lord Cobham, the more so as Lord Essex himself appears to have been blamed by the Queen in connexion with the affair, for on Oct. 16th, the now sorrowful young husband writes from Rouen that since the Queen was unwilling to defer whatever punishment was in store for him, he was resolved, as soon as wind and weather should permit, to present himself to endure whatsoever she should be pleased to inflict, “hoping that when I have once abid penance sufficient for the offence committed, I shall be restored to her former good opinion, and have liberty to take what course shall be fittest for me, which is the only suit I intend to make, and that granted, I shall account myself enough favoured.” The letter from Lord Essex on p. 557, dated 25 Sept. and attributed to this year, probably belongs to the year 1600, for on September 19, 1598, Cuff, who is mentioned in the letter, was certainly in Paris (p. 353), and Lord Southampton was not in England between the 22nd of September (p. 357) and the 16th of October (p. 392).

Dowager Lady Southampton.
The incident of marriage among members of the Southampton family was in this year not confined to the young Lord alone. His mother, the dowager Lady Southampton, with some amount of mystery took to herself a third husband in the person of Sir William Hervey. Lord Essex set Lord Harry Howard to enquire (p. 37) “whether she were married, as many thought, or at the very point of marriage, as some gave out.” In reply to this enquiry the lady gave assurance that then “the knot was yet to tie,” though she declared she would be stinted at no certain time, but ever reserve her own liberty to dispose of herself when and where it pleased her; and she particularly objected to give her son who “had made her so great a stranger to his own” marriage, any account of like proceedings on her part. In the face of all remonstrances she took her stand upon the quality of her chosen partner, “her son's strange dealing with herself and her own liberty.”

Thomas Arundell.
The fortunes of Thomas Arundell, Count of the Holy Roman Empire, who fell into dire disgrace with the Queen for attempting to wear the foreign title, but who, in the reign of her successor, was made the first Baron Arundell of Wardour, have been the subject of remark in introductions to previous portions of this Calendar. This instalment carries the account of his personal history down to the death of his father, Sir Matthew Arundell. In a letter endorsed Jan., 1597, he lays before Sir Robert Cecil certain reasons to support the request which he desires Cecil to make on his behalf to the Queen, for licence to go to sea (pp. 31, 32), which once obtained, if his intentions were realised, would enable him to prove to all the world how highly he prized the “grace and sight of his Sovereign.” The scheme by which he proposed to achieve this end was, “at his own charges and with the adventure of his life,” to bring into England “either a carrack or the worth of a carrack,” a potent argument in Elizabethan times for establishing the reality of a man's patriotism. Arundell had been suspected of Roman Catholic sympathies, his house had been haunted, so it was said, by massing priests, but he, “being more than weary of long disgraces,” was now craving Cecil's furtherance of his humble prayer to the Queen for restoration to favour. “But,” he adds, “if neither submissive prayer nor conformableness to all her commands be means sufficient to restore me to the favour which my very soul desires, then do I intreat that I may act this last scene of my life against her greatest enemies, that either dying, I may end my griefs, or living, bathe me in Spanish blood, the best witness of my innocency.” His petition, however, if ever it reached the Queen, was not granted, and he passed the year, “tormented (pp. 418, 419) with continual doubts of the Queen's displeasure, exiled from the presence of those life-giving eyes, and under the too near neighbourhood—it may be remembered that he was placed in a house not “two-flight shots” away—of a father “who is content, with me, his son, not to follow, but to exceed her Majesty's directions” in regard to keeping a vigilant watch and ward over him. Lord Henry Howard had been interesting himself on his unfortunate kinsman's behalf, and there appears to have been a certain probability that the latter might receive some “honour” through Howard's mediation. In acknowledging this kindly effort, Arundell writes—“Though myself (like the astrologer who looking to the stars fell into the ditch) have just cause to curse all honours, yet . . . I cannot but rest thankful to you for so great a friendship; and because there is a certain disavowing expected of me as causa sine qua non to this proceeding, and Mr. Secretary judgeth that this suit will be frustrate unless he may say that 'if her Majesty will assure this new quest all distasted claims shall be recanted,' I myself, as the echo of his voice, am ready to say and do the same.” What this honour was or whether it was granted, does not appear. However, it would seem that as the year drew to a close the Queen was made cognisant of Arundell's “innocency,” and before it ended he was relieved from the burden of his aged father's oversight by the old man's death.

Death of Sir Matthew Arundell.
Notwithstanding old Sir Matthew's “strait proceedings,” the son who had been the subject of them, and who had had “little cause to magnify his worth or to lament his loss” (p. 518), yet shewed exemplary conduct in the discharge of filial duty at the last. Making himself “the reporter of such a heart-breaking charity, of such an impious piety,” he writes, “my most worthy, my most dear father is dead, whose deep and hearty repentance of the errors of his youth, whose continual prayers, whose last breath ending in the name of Jesus, may sufficiently proclaim the mercy that our Saviour shewed him, and the eternal state of bliss wherein He hath now placed him. His love and care towards his friends and country, his many legacies and his excessive largesse bequeathed to the poor, do manifestly declare. As for his zeal and loyal duty to our Sovereign, besides the many proofs which the faith of his long service produceth, even his death-bed wanted not sufficient demonstration. For even there, where flattery had been bootless and dissimulation odious, he earnestly enquired of her Majesty's welfare, daily prayed for her prosperity and victory over her enemies”; and he also bequeathed to her two presents, namely, “a little table carpet wrought in China, a thing well esteemed of himself, yet unworthy of so high a Majesty,” and—“my most unworthy self.” To the son, the father had not been generous in his last dispositions—leaving him merely a “state of life” only in any of his land, and not so much as this in the most of it, and even then tying it to the payment of so many legacies that his heir would “not be able to live in the reputation of a mean gentleman”—bestowing upon him “no one jot of his goods” either, “no, not so much as the use of them” unless the son would “put in sufficient security for the restoring.” “Yet,” writes this son, in a spirit of exemplary piety, “yet, can not I think but that my father in his heart loved me, who now, at last, would not willingly be helped or touch or receive meat of any but myself.” “Wherefore,” he adds resignedly, “I can only complain of their malice by whose cunning my father was drawn to lay so heavy a cross upon me, and of my misfortune which brought me so late to my father's presence as, though he wanted not love to me nor will to alter his former courses, yet was he at my coming so wholly given up to God as that he loathed to be recalled to any worldly thoughts.”

Lord Sheffield.
Among miscellaneous cases, that of Lord Sheffield may be mentioned. In April of this year he was appointed Governor of the cautionary town of the Brill in Holland, on the death of Lord Borough. But a few months afterwards, under the influence of religious melancholy, he resigned his patent for the place, resolved, according to his own saying (p. 277), “to give over the world and all the vanities thereof and betake himself wholly to God's service.” It was thought that Sir Edward Stafford might have some influence over him and he was therefore charged to visit him at Normanby, “full sore against my will, because I hope no great effect,” so Stafford says (p. 278). The latter discharged his mission with evident tact and discretion, but for the time with little result, though he succeeded in persuading Lord Sheffield to eat and drink “abroad” and to take part in the amusement of the chase. “Make him take pleasure in somewhat; let God and himself work the rest,” is Stafford's advice as to the treatment suitable on the occasion. Of Sir Edward's visit to him, Lord Sheffield himself writes (p. 324)—“He may say with Cæsar, veni, vidi—not vici, for I continue by the grace of God irremovable.” In subsequent years Lord Sheffield would appear to have resumed his place in the world.

John Colville.
A number of letters of the outlawed Scottish Presbyterian Divine, John Colville, Camden's “impious ungrateful Scot,” appear here, addressed for the most part to the Earl of Essex, with whom he was in communication during nearly the whole of the year 1598. He writes from various places in France—Boulogne, Amiens, Vervins, &c. His first item of information relates to George Carr (p. 45), imprisoned in 1593 as an emissary from the Catholic lords in Scotland to King Philip of Spain, who had subsequently escaped to Flanders and was now about to make a secret return to his native country. The packet of letters from him and a companion to correspondents in Brussels, consisting probably of those to be found on pp. 39, 40 and 41, gave Colville the opportunity he desired for opening communications with the Earl of Essex (p. 48). “Nothing shall fall in my way,” he writes, “which may pleasure them, but I shall be as careful and faithful therein as any born Englishman.” The evidence is clear that Essex accepted his aid as a foreign “espion,” a cipher being arranged between them and money paid (p. 366). Colville describes himself (p. 139) as “your only sentinel for the Scottish practices with the enemy,” and he excuses himself beforehand (p. 141) “for keeping intelligence with some about Philip,” that is, the King of Scots, “for two lawful respects; to receive out of his hands the money that he owes me, and that, if matters go to the worst betwixt them, which undoubtedly may come to pass, I may do a notable service to her Majesty, which I cannot compass if I have no dealing at all about Philip.” The terms he asked from the Queen, if his services were accepted, were (p. 144) passage at any port without being searched, a recommendation to princes her allies (to be shown only upon “such necessity as chanced at Boulogne”), letters of denization, an address to send intelligence to, and in case he were to perish, some “gracious consideration” to his wife and children. In France, the Mayor of Boulogne among others stood to aid his friendly offices to the Queen of England (p. 176); and with regard to matters in Scotland, Quondam—a name which the decipherer interprets to indicate “his friend Primrose”—would, Colville promises, acquit himself as becomes a perfect honest man. For a time, too, Colville entertained relations abroad with his fellow exile Earl Bothwell, but finding him (p. 331) “still light as a feather and more fraudful nor a fox” and “without rhyme or reason,” he was forced to alter his opinion of him. He had other ground for the alteration, for Bothwell played the part of his betrayer (p. 365).

The exiled Bishop of Glasgow was made cognisant of the nature of Colville's employment, causing the latter to make a speedy retreat from the town of Cambray, whither he had gone for the purpose of obtaining information. “But that shall not avail them, for what I cannot do personally, I shall do by attorney. I fear nothing but that one whom I use among them be put to a strait. If he escape, I care for no more.” One of the chief subjects of the last half-dozen of Colville's letters was a plot that he brings forward for the betrayal into English hands of some unnamed fortified place, “the key to open all that country and a rod to beat Calais when and as you list” (p. 459). The plot was to be carried into execution through the intervention of a Cordelier, born Flemish, named Geford, who had a brother within the castle of the place with sufficient credit to put it into the hands of whomsoever he chose. This project was brought to Colville's notice by means of a certain Thomas Nicolson, Scottishman, “one both religious and zealous for her Majesty's service.” Colville urgently pressed the undertaking upon Essex, and excused his importunity by the avowal (p. 462) that, as he would be partaker of the “heavenly royaume” so would he, on his salvation, wish all “earthly royaumes” to be English, a height of loyal sentiment which indeed no “born Englishman” could hope to excel. His last word in this volume (p. 529) is an affirmation of his readiness to “seal with my best blood that I am in heart no subject where I am born, but where I am in conscience and courtesies bound.”

Others who may be mentioned as contributing to the contents of this volume are :—Henry Cuff, writing from Florence; Gabriel Harvey, college companion of Spenser and friend of Sydney, and author of voluminous works, “some in verse but much more in prose”; John Peyton, son of the lieutenant of the Tower, who recounts his travels from Prague to Poland and the events happening in that quarter of Europe; John Borrell, who passed years in prison in Spain and who relates his adventures and contributes information regarding the enemy's country; Thomas Chaloner, who parted with Sir Anthony Sherley at Venice, the latter passing on to Constantinople, while Chaloner writes from Lyons “after a tedious journey by reason of snowy mountains and uneasy ways; John Killigrew, cast into prison” in reward for 30 years' service in the Court (p. 155), and his comfortless wife, who, with her children “had been happy if, when the Spaniards had been at his house, they had had the spoil of it, for then had the miserable days of wife and children been ended”; the Bailiff and Aldermen of Colchester, on the subject of the alleged grievances of the Dutch congregation settled in the town; the Davers's, already mentioned in connexion with the Earl of Southampton; the Countess of Errol, sending to England to replace the “holle pleneching and housild stufe” lost in the time of the late troubles when the King came to the north; Sir Melgar Levens and Sir Charles Blunt, each giving his own version of the incidents of the quarrel between them in Paris; Lady Cobham on the arrangements connected with the marriage of her eldest daughter, Lady Cobham herself having some uncomfortable suspicion of the effect of a mother-in-law upon the bridegroom (p. 231); the Earl of Pembroke, who took offence at a report of scornful interference on the part of the Earl of Essex at the Council table in regard to his nominations of his deputy lieutenants in Radnorshire, but was placated by Sir Robert Cecil who came to Essex's defence; Sir John Hollis, on the subject of his offending cottages in Clement's Inn Fields, “singled out by Mr. Attorney” while “Cumming Gardens” and Drury Gardens and all the suburbs of London and Westminster were fruitful of similar error (p. 234); the Dowager Lady Russell, speaking a good word for her neighbour Ascanius the bookseller (p. 257), or ever ready to devote herself to Cecil's interests (p. 566); Dr. John Lloyd, of the Arches, on the subject of the liability of a stranger and denizen to fill the office of Churchwarden; Lord Grey, making his election between the friendship of Cecil and Essex (p. 269); Thomas Morley, on the printing of music; Sir William Stafford, who, prisoner in both places, exchanged the Gatehouse for a bishop's palace, living in the latter “most like a fat beast ready for the slaughter;” Andrew Hunter, Minister of the Evangel to Colonel Murray's Scots Regiment in the Low Countries; Richard Hawkins, on the subjects of his imprisonment in Spain and Spain itself; Sir John Davis, on the perfection of Artillery; Lady Ann Howard, wanting a sum of 200l. in order to the furtherance of a marriage between herself and “the son and heir of a knight in Kent;” and, lastly, Sir Thomas Sherley, the younger, relating the events of his sea voyage.



In the preparation of this volume the Commissioners have had the assistance of Mr. R. A. Roberts, Mr. E. Salisbury, Mr. R. H. Brodie, Mr. A. Hughes and Mr. C. G. Crump, all of the Public Record Office, and Mr. R. T. Gunton, Private Secretary to the Marquis of Salisbury, the first named being responsible for editing it and passing it through the press, and for the index and introduction.