689. DAVISON to LEICESTER.
I was not less glad of your letter, which I had long looked
for, than sorry to find the subject other than I had hoped, as
well for the honour I bear you as for the
I was in good hope that the long suspended and doubtful
resolutions at our Court would have been recompensed with some
agreeable news of the proceedings of your journey hither to the
relief of these countries, the honour of her Majesty, and your own
credit ; but by your letter I see that our long doubtfulness and
irresolution has at length brought forth an unworthy conclusion,
unwished I am sure by a number that foreseeing the good which
might have followed would gladly have gone forward. I am not
acquainted with the causes of the change of our resolution in
that behalf ; but thus much I dare affirm upon the judgement
of the wisest here, that if her Majesty had proceeded roundly in
this action she would not only in a few months have settled
a good and honourable peace, but also have thereby gained double
honour and security, both in respect of the obligation of these
countries, who must be bound for ever to her for so great a
benefit and in removing an enemy further off from her, who in
time with his affairs prospering (as God forbid) might be a
dangerous neighbour ; and honour in being the cause of so great
a benefit not to these countries only, but to the whole commonwealth
of Christendom, which is like to participate in the fire
already kindled here. Therefore I cannot but be sorry that she
has drawn back from the enterprise, the rather in respect of your
Fragment of draft. Endd. : 11 Martii, to my L. of Leicester
(but it appears to be embodied in his letter of the 16th, No. 702).
Much damaged. 2/3 p. [Ibid. V. 74.]
690. DAVISON to [ ?].
One Pooley, a soldier of yours, has by letter informed me of
some hard dealing used by you towards him without just occasion,
as he affirms, effered by him ; and has besought me to hear and
examine the matter between you and him. Wherein although
I have no great wish to deal, presuming the cause to be such
that what you have done was grounded upon reason and justice,
yet I thought good to request you to let me know the occasion
of it, that understanding the matter I may the better take such
order between you as justice shall require.—Antwerp, 11 March
Draft on the back of the last. 12 lines. [Ibid. V. 74r.]
691. POULET to the SECRETARIES.
I doubt not but you will look to hear often from me in
this 'tickle' and unquiet time, and indeed it is to be thought
that so many factions in so factious a country would breed some
new matter worthy of advertisement ; especially when a number
of the Malcontents being of the better sort do not contend only
who shall rule, but who shall live. The state of this country
at present is not to be considered in the King and his brother,
but rather in their followers, who have gone so far on either side
that they must go further, unless they will go no more. Our
princes may be intreated, who are of so good nature that they
can digest all sorts of offences, and in respect of their quality
think they may compound safely in any quarrel ; but their
ministers think themselves in surety no longer than while they
are out of the danger of their enemy. Yet these things are
covered with tolerable terms of unkindness and pass away calmly
as you see, so that no dangerous effect has yet ensued. Anyone
who compares these great quarrels with the cold dealing between
these two princes will conclude as before on like occasions that
they are nothing but sleight counterfeited to blear the eyes of
those of the religion and to prepare by treachery the way for
their ruin, which open force could not effectuate. This opinion
is perhaps already arrived in your parts, and the event may confirm
it. But the sequel is one thing and the first intent is another,
especially here, where we like and mislike all in an hour, and
therefore our first meaning may not be judged by the effects
ensuing. There is no doubt that Monsieur had great reasons
for discontent, and it is no less certain that he departed highly
offended, and the King is much grieved and displeased at his
departure. These three points are easily proved, and are open
to the eyes of all save those who like to talk of what may be
rather than to consider what is. You may reasonably conclude
that the taste and boiling humours of this French nation will
break out shortly into some dangerous action, which surely would
come to pass if the third faction—I mean those of the religion—
did not give the down weight between these two brothers. This
is provided for with great diligence. The King seeks all means
to content the Protestants, having lately granted the King of
Navarre much both for himself and for the cause in general,
which I have seen signed by the King. Monsieur has also sent
to the princes and all others of credit and calling to assure them
of his favour. Thus the Protestants are intreated on every side
who were wont to be threatened ; and as they count this accident
as providential for their safety, and they have resolved to profit
by it, seeking at the King's hands to establish the Edict and entertaining
Monsieur with words and proffers worthy of his quality
The reasons moving me to think that they of the religion will
deal in this sort are these : First, the ill-opinion conceived by
Duke Casimir of the young princes, which he has not spared
to signify by his letters, to their great miscontent. Wanting
anything rather than courage they will now maintain peace, if
for no other reason, to keep themselves out of his danger and
have no need of his succour. No doubt Duke Casimir had good
cause to dislike their proceeding in many things, and therefore
as he had done well to reform them, so it is dangerous to 'leese'
them, especially at this bad time, when reason and policy bid
us not only keep our old friends, but seek new ones. Secondly,
the disposition of these princes, who desiring nothing more than
liberty and quietness, will avoid all occasion of war. I say nothing
of their necessity, a bitter enemy to all honourable attempts, and
I should be glad not to know of the partialities between those
of the better sort. Lastly, the Protestants generally are weary
of the war and will accept peace with any reasonable conditions.
It follows that these French factions will stand upon their guard
on every side, and so pass this year or the better part thereof
without any great trouble ; and one good thing will follow of
these partialities, that if the French do no good they will do no
And now her Majesty may answer the Spaniard and his English
traitorous servants the more boldly. He comes from far, with many
dangers, difficulties, and uncertainties, and with great charges ;
so that the mere certainty that her ships are abroad and ready
to receive them will keep them at home. I write this plainly
of the Spaniard because I have conceived an ill-opinion of his
arming by sea and am more than half persuaded that he has
intelligence with Stukeley. If her Majesty will send her ships
to sea she may perhaps save more by spending than she can do
by saving, and her subjects may be assured to traffic safely.
I do not deliver my opinion to you as a matter of truth, being
partly acquainted with the rashness and inconstancy of this
nation ; but have thought it agreeable with my duty to tell you
what I see or think that may import her Majesty's service. And
therefore I may not forget to tell you that many captains have
been dispatched from hence of late, with their rendezvous at
'Reines,' Mézières, and other places on the borders of Germany ;
and some of good judgement here believe that the exploit is
intended against Duke Casimir. No doubt the King hates him
deadly, and the Duke of Guise is no better affected to him, and
the Spaniard may further it to divert him from succouring the
Estates. I have been of the opinion that those of the religion
would be stirred with this foreign quarrel ; but good and grave
men have assured me of the contrary, for the causes above
Monsieur sent two letters at once to the King by Rochepot,
the first containing nothing but protestations of goodwill, fidelity,
etc., and this was shown to all men. The other full of complaints,
declaring among other things the great discontent of all
the nobility of the realm to see the King ruled by a 'sort' of
young men, not only to his discredit, but to the spoil of his
St. Aignan and some others which have been shaken up
of late are retired to Bourges, and Drou is in the dungeon there ;
and now Monsieur has asked leave to choose the governors of all
the towns and castles that are in his appanage and remove them
at his pleasure, and to levy certain companies of men for the
security of his person to be paid from the tailles and other
impositions rising within his appanage. The King has written
to St. Aignan and the rest to be obedient to Monsieur's commands.
Queen Mother was two days at Angiers before she spoke with
Monsieur, who was lodged in the castle, and his brother in the
town. First he was sick, and then she was sick ; and these
little things serve to confirm the opinion of the Pope's Nuncio,
who is said to have written to the Pope that the division between
the two brothers proceeds of Queen Mother, who finding them
wholly possessed by their young counsellors has devised this
means to bring them both 'in her danger.'
It is said that Monsieur goes to 'Château Bryan' in Britanny
and that the King intends to make a journey into Normandy.
Hopkins David (fn. 1) returning out of Italy arrived here the 8th inst.
He has delivered me this Welsh letter inclosed, addressed as he says
to Sir Edward Stradling [?] (fn. 1) from the master of the English house
at Rome, praying me to discharge him of the said letter, which
he feared might do him harm in England, not knowing that he
would repair there with my messenger. I desired him to translate
it into English, which I also send. Other things have been
referred to his report, which he has given me in writing. I
reserve it for my discharge, and inclose a copy. This ēdast
[? written over an erased word, which may be Papist] promises
to go to you with all diligence ; but considering the importance
of this message, the dangerous papists that are in this
town, that he was known to be with me, and might be
seduced by ill counsel or conveyed out of the way by sinister
practice, I have thought it most agreeable with my duty to send
him with this messenger, having bidden him tell all men that
because he comes from Rome I conceived that he might be
able to say somewhat, but he knows nothing. This fellow has
been a scholar in Oxford these five or six years, and is not so
simple as he seems to be.
The advertisement sent by Mr. Wythipole touching Naples
has been written hither, and from hence to great personages ;
but it is now thought not to be true in all points, being confirmed
that the outlaws there have erected a new King and
committed great insolence.
It is certain that great sums of money have been sent hence
in the last two days to Don John. Part has been sent hither from
Nantes and the rest paid by exchange. I hear also from Geneva
that 8 'mulets' laden with money passed through Savoy to Don
John about the 12th ult.
I also understand by letters from Florence of the 12th ult.
that the ships arrested at Naples are not likely to be restored ;
that two others are arrested in Sicily ; that the Pope makes great
provision of money and has set a new subsidy upon his clergy ;
and that the Kings of Spain and Portugal are making great
levies of men in every corner.
I received the enclosed bill from M. Pinart, who prayed me
to recommend the causes mentioned in it to you.
I pray God the Spanish Ambassador does not abuse her Majesty
with fair words, their doing tending so apparently to our ruin
that I do not see how words can excuse them. Their religion
allows them to swear and unswear and to spare their conscience
in nothing that may annoy us. If these Spanish colonies come once
to be our neighbours, I fear they will aspire to be our masters.
The best occasions are perhaps lost, but it is never too late to
take all occasions to avoid mischief. God forbid that the irresolutions
of these headless heads of the States should be the ruin
of themselves and their neighbours.—Paris, 11 March 1577.
Add. Endd. 5 pp. [France II. 23.]
691 bis. HODDESDON to BURGHLEY.
As in my last, of Feb. 23, for want of matter and for good
usance I troubled you with such occurrents as at that time I had
heard of, so now I send you, on the other side of the paper,
such matter as has since come into my hands. The credit of it
I leave to the judgement of time, for as I am not the author of
this or others that I write, I advertise nothing but what is
written by others from sundry places, which I deliver for your
consideration as they are brought to me.
I am also to beseech you that if now or hereafter there be
any service to be done for her Majesty on this side the seas
for affairs merchantable, I may have the doing of it ; and I assure
you it shall be done so effectually that I doubt not it shall be
Occurrents.—From Wittenberg, 6 and 12 Feb.
The Turk threatens the Venetians with war unless they yield
About Wittenberg, Tantenberg makes 1,000 horse ready for the
States, and N., cousin to the Bishop of Misnia [Meissen], as many.
It is said likewise that the Count Palatine, Casimir, will aid them
The Marquis George Frederick with 300 horse is gone to
Warsaw to the King of Poland, from whom the ambassadors
sent by the princes of Germany to treat the peace of Dantzic
procured him beforehand the government of 'Borissa' ; the prince
of that country being by sickness become unable to govern. The
said Marquis pays for it 200,000 florins. He has now joined with
him, as committed to the Diet of Warsaw on behalf of the Elector
of Saxony, the noble, worthy, learned Abraham Bocke and Dr.
Andreas Pauli, who were both employed on the peace. He will
reduce to order the contentious divines of that province, who have
so troubled those churches that at Königsberg there has in many
weeks been neither preaching nor ministration of the Sacraments.
In a meeting on Jan. 28, appointed by the Governor of Halle,
the divines of Magdeburg, after an alteration of four chapters,
have subscribed to the book made at 'Torge.'
—From Misnia, 12 Feb.
Last night six men arrived from Transilvania, 250 leagues
from here, affirming that a certain Pole, long since banished
by the Muscovite's persuasion, has surprised Moldavia and driven
out the former governor. The Turks 'joining' thereupon have
twice been put to flight by him. The Voivode of Transilvania
has sent the Moldaves 4,000 to help them against him.
A meeting is appointed at Frankfort for Aug. 25 next 'upon
the mene' of the chiefest and most learned divines in Poland,
Hungary, Transilvania, England, France, and the Low Countries.
It is thought that the Palatine Casimir will also send divines
—From the same place, 23 Feb.
Although the divines of Heidelberg were three months since
appointed to depart within 14 days, they are still there, and in
more assurance by the agreement between the two brothers. Yet
the Elector shows more favour to those who profess the contrary
doctrine concerning the Lord's Supper. The worthy Christopher
Oemus [Ehemius], late Lord Chancellor, having been 14 months
in private custody, is set at liberty, but not restored to his former
state ; yet he has promised his service to both the brothers.
In 'Cleveland,' upon forbidding of preaching of the Word,
three towns, Marck, Bergen, and Cleve, refuse to pay their
accustomed tribute and tolls.
It is thought the Emperor will intermeddle with the affairs
of the Low Countries and command each side to 'refrain arms.'
To that end a diet is appointed at Worms for April 6th, where
the four Electors on the Rhine will meet and confer with the
Emperor. A like meeting is fixed at Prague, with the Electors
of Saxony and Brandenburg.
In Switzerland are great 'garboils' between those who hold
with the Pope and the contrary side, because the Pope's partisans
will help the Spaniards ; so much that on the consul of Bern
reproving them very earnestly, the chief of the Pope's side struck
him with his fist.
Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Hanse Towns I. 33.]
692. Passport from Gravesend for Don Bernardino Mendoza.
—Greenwich, 11 March 1578.
Signed by the Lords of the Council. Endd. ½ p. [Spain
K. d. L. x.
693. The QUEEN to WILLIAM DAVISON and GEORGE GILPIN.
Conveying two procurations each for 50,000l. and constituting
the addressees jointly and severally her agents to receive the sum
and hand it to the Estates.—Greenwich, 12 March 1577.
Add. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. V. 75.]
694. Copy of the above. 1 p. [For. E.B. Misc. II.]
K. d. L. x.
695. ROGERS to WALSINGHAM.
I sent you a letter from 'Gravisend' touching my finding
Mendoza there and Lantschat sent from the Duke of Deux-Ponts.
As I went on to Canterbury and Dover, I heard that Mendoza was
asked when the Spanish Ambassador would come. He answered
that he was come from him and had left him at Amiens ; he had
been sent on to ask her Majesty for the loan of one of her ships
to bring him over to England, which being done the ambassador
would arrive shortly. He met with Pappart, the Flemish merchants'
post, who reviled him and called him marano. This I
thought good to write to you that I might make a letter, having
Being come thus far, my host tells me that Don John besieging
Nivelle, a town in Brabant, has received an overthrow and lost
his artillery. The Marquis will bring the truth of this. I wrote
this beforehand that I might deliver it to some of his company,
as he is on the way from Bruges, three leagues from here. They
say here that Don John thought after taking Nivelle to march
towards Alost and make his way to Flanders, where he knows
he will find victuals. The Almighty bless your honour and my
lady with all yours.—In haste from 'Aldenburch,' as I was posting
towards Bruges 13 March 1577.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. V. 76.]
696. THE KING OF PORTUGAL to the STATES-GENERAL.
Though I can always rely upon you to do what is
right in my affairs, I have been much rejoiced to learn
from the letters of Sebastian de Costa, a gentleman of my
household, and Nunnalunez Pereira your goodwill towards
the business for which I sent to you. You know well
that I have determined upon an enterprise to Africa, and how
to that end I desire to have the Germans and the munitions
for which I have sent. I entreat you to inform the Queen of
England, to whom also I am writing my resolution touching this
enterprise, of what you have clearly understood in respect of it,
and to assure her that my designs have reference solely to Africa,
and to the prevention of the harm which the Turks of that country
may do me, so that she may convince herself of a thing so
certain and dismiss all information of a different kind (if so be
that she have any), in which no man need believe. As I know
you will do me good offices, I shall say no more.—Lisbon, 15
Copy, translated from Portuguese. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Portugal
697. THE KING OF SPAIN to M. DE SELLES.
We have received your letter dated 'Hevere lez Louvain,' of
February 20 last, with the enclosures. We consider that you
have acquitted yourself very well of your charge, and thank you
for the trouble you have taken.
Coming to the principal point contained in your letter that we
would confirm the Archduke Matthias in the government, as
desired in the Estates' letter of December 31, and still pressed
by them, as you write ; or name some other in the place of Don
John. Besides what you may have heard from us by word of
mouth and what we wrote in our letter of February 22 we will
say again, for you to announce it to the Estates, that it is not
our will that the Archduke should remain as governor, although
if the Catholic religion and the obedience due to us be really
observed as in the time of the Emperor our father, we shall be
content for the sake of peace and quiet to let them have at
an early date another governor of the blood with whom they
cannot reasonably be dissatisfied. But this can only be if they
will return to their obedience and make peace, otherwise we cannot
recall our brother nor the forces we have sent him.
Accordingly there is nothing to be said about the pacification
of Ghent since matters have to return to the condition abovementioned,
in which case we will not only forget the past, but
will restore and extend their franchises and privileges, treating
them like good and loyal vassals and subjects.
Lastly, we have heard with pleasure the plan suggested with
regard to the Prince of Parma and the Prince of Orange for the
more secure observance of the promises on either side. And by
the said Orange refusing to adopt it his evil intentions are
sufficiently declared, and our sincerity is sufficiently established
by our brother's offer to place himself in the hands of the
Estates.—Madrid, 15 March 1578. (Signed) Philip. (Countersigned)
Dennetieres. Below : Collated with the original at
Mechlin on April 23 by Jan de Noircarmes.
Copy. Endd. by L. Tomson. Fr. 1½ pp. [Holl. and Fl.
698. Another copy of the above. 1½ pp. [Ibid. V. 78.]
699. Another copy. 1¾ pp. [For. E.B. Misc. II.]