485. SPEECH of M. DES PRUNEAUX before the STATES-GENERAL.
The zeal for your safety which I have always seen in my master
makes me greatly deplore the disorder which I see coming upon your
state by reason of the number of artful enemies of your country and
its liberties. I should greatly fear that these by their craft and
subtilty will succeed in their pernicious designs were God not
willing to protect it in spite of all the opposition of the malicious.
Now my master being one of the principal instruments to maintain
that liberty, nay, greater I think than any other whom you could find
in all Europe, for this reason all the disturbers have set themselves
against him, having begun to accuse him, in order to make him
odious, from the time when you first summoned him to your aid ;
saying that he was coming here to instigate massacre. Afterwards
when he began to send his people here, he was accused of having
intelligence with the Spaniard ; and when they saw the warlike
exploits which he soon performed against the same Spaniard, they
accused him of wanting to suborn certain provinces, to separate
them from the rest ; which was far from the case, for they want
to put themselves under the obedience of the Spaniard, and he has
had intelligence with many lords of these countries to act contrary
to the agreement made by his Highness with the generality. This
may be clearly seen from the little assistance given him by the said
lords. Further that he had sent Frenchmen with the Walloons to
bring about a complete division in this state, and even to take their
part against the generality, in order to efface his good intentions ;
whereas he did not send them. Nevertheless knowing that you
wished him to take them away, he asked at once so that they are
there no longer. And now that he wishes to go away for reasons
important to him, waiting for you to resolve to employ him as he
desires, seeing that all these things have been cleared up to their
confusion, and that they have been compelled to confess his
integrity, they have, in order to give proof of their malevolence,
stirred up the people of Mons to say that his Highness wanted to
surprise that town and make himself master of it. Gentlemen, I
think it will not be difficult for me to make you believe the contrary,
since there are here many gentlemen who were there at a time
when his Highness had more than 6,000 French in the town,
among them more than 400 gentlemen who were quite enough to
guard a gate while 12,000 harquebusiers whom he had at hand
came and seized the town. Further, I think you will not suspect
that when he is on the point of coming to a great and honourable
conclusion with you doing everything to deserve your entire confidence,
he would wish to seize a town to make himself odious.
You will believe then, if you please, that all these discourses are
merely inventions to divert the, friendship and the aid which you
need. I am sure that those who are wise will reject such calumnies,
as things discriminated only to make you lose the good understanding
that you have with my master. Now they will be able to
say no more ; each will have to shut his mouth and confess the
friendship which is due from you to him.
I will entreat you to come to a conclusion upon my request when
the States-General meet, and to give me an answer. Also to take
steps in regard to what befel M. Bonivet, to the end that justice
may be done in the manner I have requested.—Antwerp, New
Year's Day 1579.
Copy. Endd. in Fr. and by L. Tomson. Fr. 2 pp. [Holl. and
Fl. XI. 1.]
486. Another copy. Endd.by D.Rogers in Fr. and by L. Tomson.
3⅓ pp. (Smaller paper.) [Ibid. XI. 2.]
487. MM. DE FROIDMONT and MARTINI to the STATES-GENERAL.
We informed you yesterday of our negotiation with the Duke of
Anjou pursuant to our instructions from you. His Highness having
asked for a copy we this morning presented to him the articles
enclosed ; in reply to which he gave us this afternoon the articles
noted in the margin. The negotiation of this business being of
great public importance we have thought it well to await your
resolution.—Condé, 1 Jan. 1579.
Copy. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XI. 3.]
488. DANIEL ROGERS to WALSINGHAM.
I doubted for a while whether to put down in writing my negotiation
with the Duke and the Prince, or reserve it till my return, as
it seemed dangerous to commend such matters to letters. Ultimately
I judged it well to write some of it, and that to my Lord Leicester,
who perhaps looked that I should advertise him. I have reserved
many things to my return, which will not be long ; and doubt not
but that he will impart all things to you.
They were not so reconciled before I came, but that many suspicions
were yet left in Duke Casimir's mind. He told me 'eftsoons'
that the Prince deeply dissembled with him, and did not communicate
his designs to him. Whereupon I took occasion to ask the Prince
to come oftener to him and take those scruples out of his mind,
as he does. He took the Earl of Leicester's sending of me in as
good part as the Duke did. Both la Noue and Argentlieu think
my lord has done both Christianly and honourably in dealing as
he has ; for they see these two princes conferring with more love
and sincerity than they did before. The Duke confesses that he
committed a great fault in neither writing to her Majesty nor to
the Earl of Leicester or yourself. Many hot and choleric speeches
have passed between Mr Davison and Beutrich, which make
affections to boil still in Beutrich ; with whom I have had great
discourse, but mean at my return from hence (which will be at the
latest on the 3rd) to talk more with him, that he may better
understand the cause of my coming, and that before Mr Languet.
La Noue returned the 26th of this present (sic) to Ghent, with
the Duke of Alençon's secretary, sent to the Prince, to tell him
that as on the 29th the Duke meant to leave Mons for France,
and desire him to send captains and garrisons for the towns
which he has and minds to restore. He added that if necessity
should require, and he and the Estates should wish him to
return he would not fail to show how ready he was to succour them.
M. la Noue could not fully persuade himself that he would depart
that day ; yet it is certain that on that day he departed towards
Condé. As the report is here, the citizens minding to do him honour
went out before him ; who being without the town, and seeing his
horsemen hidden in a wood, suspected that the French went about to
get betwixt the town and them. Wherefore they returned and took
away the keys from Lalaing. Others think that the Duke had
placed his cavalry in ambush in order that he might pass away
safely without encounter of the Spaniards, who eftsoons made
excursions to the said wood, and not long before had almost intercepted
Bussy. Time will declare the truth.
The Spaniards are besieging Carpen and Maestricht, but afar off.
I talked to-day with one who has served them, and affirms they are
as good as 14,000 at least, and that six weeks ago they paid their
whole army for two months. The Count of Reux and Mondragon
are certainly alive ; but except it be Mondragon there is never a
'captain Spaniard' of name among them. But they have three
ensigns of Spaniards, among whom is none but has had charge ; out
of which they take captains or officers for the rest. The Prince of
Parma and Mondragon have their abode commonly at Limburg.
M. de Hierges, now Count of 'Barlemond,' is governor of Namur as
his father was. Don John's body remains still at Namur and will
be sent to Spain. He affirmed to me that the Prince of Parma was
not beloved of the Spaniards. All the doubt the enemy has is in
treason, which they look for on the side of the Estates.
The Prince stayed but a night at 'Derremonde' to speak with
the Marquis of Havrech, who had been with them of Artois ; and is
returned again to Ghent to make an end with the Walloons. I am
greatly afraid if the Walloons and the Artesians do not shortly agree
with the rest of the states some horrible disaster will happen by
reason of the disobedience that there is among the soldiers, and
because there is no justice and the country is so spoiled that I fear
the occasion will fail them by which they were wont to make
collections of money. Many of the nobility hate the Prince's
felicity, and do not like the publication of the 'Religion-freedt' (a
printed copy of which I send you), nor his other proceedings at
Ghent. Nor do things stand well in Groningen and the territory
appertaining to it. The townsmen and the gentlemen who dwell
without the town, who are of very ancient houses, cannot agree, by
reason of great privileges which the town arrogates ; for a gentleman
or peasant dwelling in the country cannot brew any beer, but must
buy it brewed in the town ; with many other quiddities, which the
'magistrate' goes about to maintain against the gentlemen and
inhabitants of their jurisdiction. There are besides many papists in
the town who are addicted to the Spaniards.
Two days ago the Prince showed me a letter from a gentleman
at 'St. Homer' by which it appears that la Motte has been
with them and that the town is for the Estates as far as they shall
observe the union. St. Omer is a town of Artois, and therefore will
'allwyse' follow such order as may be agreed with the rest of Artois.
La Motte is mad because of his 35 gentlemen slain, of which I wrote
to you on December 20 from Bruges, and has come out of Gravelines
to avenge their deaths. The Prince told me he cannot tell
how to deal with the Englishmen that served la Motte in Gravelines,
because he fears to displease her Majesty. He affirms they do ill
service to that country as la Motte does.
The Estates have promised Duke Casimir's reiters half a month's
pay ; item, a new quarter to be lodged in, where they shall receive
two months' pay, and half a month to be paid a few days after. At
present they owe them 1,800,000 florins. The Elector Palatine is
dying, wherefore he would more gladly return ; yet the Estates mean
to desire him to stay with 4,000 reiters. The Count of Neuenahr,
a noble, learned, and rich Count, is dead, and the young Count
who formerly offered his services to her Majesty by Mr. Collsell's
[qy. Coleshill] means is his heir. The Count of 'Frydersheitt' has
invaded a 'fair house' which he ought to have by inheritance,
I am compelled to leave off here by the sudden departure of the
merchant who is to carry these letters ; wherefore I beseech God
to grant you a lucky new year.—Antwerp, New Year's Day 1578
Add. : 'at his house nigh Allgat, by London Wall.' Endd.
5 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 4.]
489. FRANCIS MYLLES to DAVISON.
I desired my fellow Mr Tomson more than a week ago to testify
you of the signature of your bill, which he said he would not fail to
do. Ever since my master got it signed it has lain in his hands.
It were not good for you to let it lie so long, for till it is under the
Great Seal and enrolled it is worth nothing in law. Afterwards
what is to be thought of its validity you may see by the enclosed
note, which my master a good while ago caused to be set down in
writing upon enquiry he made for his own resolution of certain
doubts, so that if they were put by any one into her Majesty's mind
before she signed the book, he might be better able to answer her.
You were best therefore to cause 'some or other' to 'fet' the bill
from here and pass it under the Great Seal orderly as soon as may
be.—Richmond, 2 Jan. 1578.
Add. Endd : from Sir Fr. Wals. 1 p. [Ibid. XI. 5.]
490. WILSON to DAVISON.
Having of late some speech with her Majesty on Low Country
matters, I found she disliked the States greatly, 'that would
neither seek earnestly for a peace, nor take advantage of the
time for their best safety.' She feared much that their civil
dissension among themselves would be their utter ruin in the end.
'In the midst of this speech' she thought you were not careful
enough to give them warning upon occasion offered. My answer
was that the States wanted money to do themselves good. Being
somewhat divided among themselves for matters of religion, they
would soon agree against the common enemy if their ability were
thereafter. But want causes men to be desperate, and often entices
them to run a course against all reason. Of your faithfulness and
care to do good, I was well assured ; and though the success did not
follow to your mind, your earnest dealing with them should not
want the praise. In the matter of Ghent with Duke Casimir I said
you showed both courage and wisdom ; which her Majesty affirmed
to be true, and liked you very well for that service.
To be short, I do not see that any aid will be sent from hence, and
therefore they had need to trust to themselves, and take heed that
they give no advantage of time to their adversaries, who only by
temporizing will undo them all in the end.
Commend me to Mr Rogers and Mr Gilpin.—Richmond, 2 Jan.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 6.]
491. The DUKE OF ANJOU to the QUEEN.
I cannot enough thank you for the letter with which you have
honoured me by this little bearer. I regret to have been born under
so unfortunate a star that I have hitherto been unable to satisfy the
least part of my desire to do you humble service ; but I rest in hope
that time will not leave me so unhappy as not to render you signal
proof of what will henceforth be inseparable from my soul, and I
promise myself that on this occasion (ocquation) I will conclude
these negotiations set on foot so long ago, which will be the one
thing in the world to render me satisfied. By so doing you will
gain the six works of mercy, restoring a languishing life, which
exists and will exist only so far as I shall think it worthy to do what
may be acceptable to you. I hope you will do me the honour to
believe me and will take my affection as it is, faithful in my soul,
and not put it on a level with this poor confused discourse of passion
moved by so many fair qualities (baus subges), and likely to bring
the most copious pen into difficulties in the choice of so many base
virtues. Wherefore, to fall into no further error, I beseech you to
believe that in the sole contemplation of you as the most perfect
goddess of the heavens I will humbly kiss your hands.—Condé,
Holograph. Add. Endd. by L. Tomson : 4 Jan. 1578, from
Monsieur to her Majesty. Fr. 2 pp. [France III. 1.]
492. [JACQUES DE SOMERE] to DAVISON.
Mr Rogers has doubtless informed you fully of all that has
happened here since his arrival, which is why I have discontinued
writing. Besides, I have been hourly expecting you here. Now
that there is no longer any hope of that, as I have heard
nothing of it for a long while, I thought I would resume my duty of
imparting to you what happens here. Since my last there has
been no change worth mentioning, except that the Catholics have
with the new year recommenced the exercise of their religion in
this town without let or hindrance. Every one has been amazed to
see such a multitude of people frequent their prêches et temples,
which were out of comparison fuller than ours. This alone, in the
absence of the Prince, might cause some emulation, and consequent
folly, if justice be not rigorously enforced against the first delinquent.
To this end eight notables have been chosen, four of either religion,
to procure the indifferent observance of the edict. I foresee that
the task will be thorny (scabreuse) and chiefly on our side.
You have heard of the Prince's negotiation at Dendremonde and I
will not repeat it. We still await the Walloons' reply. Many think
it will not be very good, because they do not cease hostilities and
part of them are on the road to West Flanders to join la Motte ; who
is said to be at present before Winoxberghe with 1,500 harquebusiers
and 500 horse with the intention of besieging it if they will not
surrender. It is hoped that he will lose his labour because there
are in it three companies of good soldiers and the place is strong.
The aldermen of both benches appeared again to-day before his
Excellency to be relieved of their duties. If their request is not
granted, I think some of them will retire with him rather than serve
The Châtellenies are crying murder against the reiters and
M. d' Argentlieu's companies for the outrages which they commit.
The Prince speaks of returning to Antwerp in three or four days ;
I hope to return with him. Meanwhile if there is anything I can
do for you here, I am at your service.—Ghent, 4 Jan. 1579. (Signed)
Celuy que cognoissez.
Add. Fr. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 7.]
493. ROSSEL to TOMSON.
Many thanks for the announcement of the safe arrival of mine of
[Nov.] 29, Dec. 7 and 13. I have sent all the important negotiations
of December except a few documents which I hope to send at the
first opportunity. As for the Ghent negotiations I hear that her
Majesty's agent has sent them by a special messenger. The decision
arrived at with the Walloons will indeed only come to hand to-day.
They have been given rendezvous at Herentals on leaving Flanders,
as I am writing to your master. As for my own services I know he
will bear them in mind.—Antwerp, 4 Jan. 1578.
Add. Endd. Fr. [Ibid. XI. 8.]
494. ROSSEL to WALSINGHAM.
In mine of Dec. 28 and 29 I told you of the stratagems of the
French and sent copies of the most important negotiations of the
month, although it is a capital offence to communicate or transmit
them. I obtained them by means which you can imagine. I send the
letters patent forwarded from Spain to M. de la Motte, of which he
has made such use as you have heard at St. Omer and other
towns of Artois, to divide them from the union, in pursuance of the
intelligence he had with Montigny, Lalaing and others whom it
would be tedious to specify, not omitting the Walloons, who were
backing the French and availed themselves of this question, as time
has shown and will show more.
By the first messenger I hear of I will send you the instructions
given to the commissioners who have been sent into the
provinces about the assessment of the contribution. You will
see that without the moyens généraux the budget came to
600,000 florins per month. I hope to have other important
documents if you will back me up ; though I perceive the discontent
and black looks of the agent, who as I know dispatched a special
messenger with the Ghent negotiations, which I should have done
some time ago but for my confidence in his diligence. The agreement
with the Walloons in which, but for some who were contrary,
I ought to have been employed was to come to-day. The delay
makes one suspicious. The Prince has given them rendezvous at
Herentals, whereby Messicurs de Brabant find themselves offended
inasmuch as they have to bear all the expenses of the war. I think
the Prince has done it to make head against the enemy, who in
spite of the talk of peace have built bridges above and below
Maestricht. This makes people fear that they will make an
attempt on that town or elsewhere during the frost ; as they very
nearly achieved something there at their last approach.
For the last four days there has been no talk in the Estates of
anything but how to get rid of the reiters and others of the army,
and keep so many people as the need of the time requires during
this peace-conference, which will be accompanied by a six weeks'
truce. This has been agreed. The conditions have not yet come,
but are hourly expected. I would let you have them at once if I
heard of any special messenger.
The conference will be held at Cologne where the electors deputed
for the purpose will meet, and immediately the truce has been
published, the deputies of the States will start. The Duke of Nova
Terra and the Bishop of 'Wisbourg' are there already. All hope
for a good issue, because the deputies have the reputation of honesty.
Others say that the Duke of Nova Terra is well-disposed to the
peace of this country. If he were not a Spaniard I would support
the general opinion.
On the meeting of some of the Estates, abbots and prelates, where
I was summoned with others about the negotiation for purifying
the Walloons, there was talk about the hope of peace, some said that
they thought her Majesty would be against it and hinder it, in
order to maintain her own repose. To this flippant suggestion I
answered that she had sought the repose of our country as she had
shown by sending ambassadors to that effect, having aided us with
men and money and testified her goodwill. On this answer the
Finally it was concluded that if the passion of a few that were
contrary did not interfere the peace would come to pass ; since it
was in the hands of the Emperor, who upon the hope of his marriage,
already settled, with a daughter of Spain, would give it his
backing. An additional point was the extremity to which the enemy
is reduced, who in all his actions shows that he is in straits both
without and within. This view was supported by the news from Italy,
Germany, France and elsewhere, where the peace has already
The meeting of the Estates had been proposed to those of Brussels,
to which end the nations were convened to advise if it could
conveniently be done according to the ancient customs. The first
Member, namely the magistrates, held that the meeting would not
be convenient at that time and season, but injurious to the town
owing to the dearness of victuals, the country all round being
ruined and destroyed. The second, who are the guilds, were of the
contrary opinion, saying that the assembly must needs be held at
Brussels since this had always been done. As for victuals, so far
from any likelihood of dearth, there was plenty of everything. In
this view they were backed by the people, who sent deputies begging
his Highness and the Estates to come, and that they would consent
to receive such a garrison as should seem good. They nearly came
to blows on the subject, saying that the opinion of the magistrates
sprang from the Prince's arrière-conseil. Finally those of Holland
and Zealand supported the magistrates, alleging the same difficulty
and inconvenience as to victuals. The result I will let you know.
As for our French they are reduced to such a predicament that
they are on all sides regarded with disdain and as enemies, although
in French fashion they want to disavow the action ; throwing the
blame on Bussy d'Amboise and excusing Monsieur as being
ignorant of what was done, whereas we know for certain the
The people of Mons continuing to guard their town after the
discovery of that enterprise, and learning more fully that the
captains and officers of Montigny's two companies which were in
garrison there had been practised by the French, especially the
lieutenant-colonel, named Strenchant, these were by the burghers
forcibly ejected from the town, with such violence and fury that it
was thought a cruel massacre must follow. This was remedied by
the grace of God and the obedience of the Walloons.
These having been driven out by the burghers, they surrounded
the house of Count Lalaing, whom they are holding a prisoner,
having advertised the States of their intentions ; which is solely to
preserve their town, lives and goods, and abide in the Union conformably
to their oath.
Count Lalaing having been put into the position he deserves, has
written to his Highness and the Estates requesting them to send the
Duke of Aerschot or M. de Frésin to 'remedy' the burghers.
But those gentlemen seem unwilling, each for reasons of his own,
to undertake that duty, and the Estates have no great wish to
'remedy' it, now that they are sure of the burghers' good intent.
Meantime Monsieur is still at Condé, whither M. de Fromont has
been sent with compliments on his departure in pursuance of his
letters and the statement of Dampmartin who called attention to
the disaffection in some of the provinces ; a thing entirely false if a
letter which I received to-day, written from Paris on the 22nd ult.,
may be credited. It says that the King is there and goes every day
to St. Germain-en-Laye to hunt ; the Queen mother is at Toulouse
to make some peace with the King of Navarre, who has seized a
town in Guienne, called Florence [qy. Fleurance], all in play or for
diversion ; M. de Guise may come to Court any day. This is very far
from what we were given to understand by those franctaulpins, who
under the name of defenders are manifest ravishers. We are
awaiting M. de Fromont's return to hear what M. d'Anjou intends.
He is very angry with the people of Mons, and so is thought to
be undecided what to settle about his return.—Antwerp, 4 Jan.
Add. Endd. Fr. 4½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 9.]
495. The PRINCE OF ORANGE to the STATES.
Though I make no doubt that M. de Froidmont and M. Martini
have sent you a copy of the Duke of Alençon's answer to the
articles proposed to him, I think it well to send you a copy of it
forwarded by them to me. You will have heard from the Marquis
my opinion upon the contents of the articles, so that I need not
repeat it. I will only inform you that all, thank God, both in this
town and in the rest of the country, is making good progress
towards peace, and that I hope you will shortly be able to order
matters as you shall find expedient for the good of the country.—
Ghent, 5 Jan. 1579.
Copy. Endd. by L. Thomson. Fr. 2/3 p. [Ibid. XI. 10.]
496. ROGERS to WALSINGHAM.
I am returned from Antwerp hither to finish my business. Duke
Casimir was offended with Mr Davison for divers reasons, but he
so well answered the objections which the Duke rehearsed to me
that I do not doubt but I shall easily make them friends. But
Beutrich's 'intemperancy' is great. Understanding from me that
the command which Mr Davison had from her Majesty to negotiate
with his master was general, he triumphs against him, as
Mr Davison told me he had heard before I left Antwerp. I am but
just arrived and therefore have not yet been with either the Duke
or Beutrich ; but I mind this forenoon to deal with them, and use
part of your instructions. This I think I may the better do, having
been at Antwerp, where I may say I received letters whereby I am
further admonished how to proceed. Mr Davison has appointed
to come to Ghent within three days ; if he does, he will perceive
that I have dealt sincerely for him.
Since I last wrote to you, des Pruneaulx has negotiated with
the States to refute the suspicions with which the Duke of Alençon
was aggrieved. Among other things he desires the States to
do justice upon those who attempted to murder Mr Bonnivet,
as you will see by the annexed copy of his negotiations. The
Prince has sent M. la Noue again to the Duke, who remains
at Condé. It is thought he was plainly minded to depart, and
did not mean to take Mons, which could not long profit him if he
had taken it, unless he had other towns of Hainault to help him.
M. de Tinterville was with him, and used many reasons to persuade
him to return to France ; which he was able with the more effect
to do, since the Duke suffered many indignities daily at the hands of
them of Hainault. Besides it will be honourable for him to appease
the troubles of his own country, for which purpose he is desired to
return by the king his brother. M. de Froidmont is still with him,
who was sent to desire him to stay till the Estates send further to
him. They of Mons have written to the Estates burdening Monsieur
with great suspicion, and make it believed of every man that he
would have 'surprendred' the town.
There is talk here of the Estates returning to Brussels, that they
may the better provide for matters of Hainault and especially of
Artois. The Marquis of Havrech did no great matter with the
Prince at Dendermond touching them of Artois, but only declared
what resolution they had taken for not receiving the use of the
reformed religion. He dealt with the Prince for the sending of the
reiters towards Maestricht if the Spaniards went on besieging that
The Prince would by now have agreed with the Walloons if M. de
Hèze were not worse than mad. But la Motte especially hinders
any agreement, seeing that he would be left alone if the Estates
were to agree with the Walloons and Artesians. But it is thought
that the rest of the Walloons will not stick to him. There is much
ado for the gathering of money. Flanders is required to make
400,000 florins, about which they are busy ; minding to reserve out
of this sum 150,000 for the payment of their own bands. In other
provinces they are not so ready.
The deputies of Friesland, Overyssel, and those who dwell between
Ruremonde and Venlo in Guelderland, earnestly solicit the Estates
in the Prince's absence that order be taken to remove the religion
out of their quarters. Those of Guelderland above-mentioned also
dislike the government of Count John of Nassau.
Meanwhile Count Schwarzenberg is looked for daily. He is said
to agree with the Prince of Parma for 6 weeks' truce ; which will
not serve 'particular men' to go to and fro, but will for the while
take away general hostilities and permit the Estates to send
reciprocally to the Spaniards and the Spaniards to them for a
general peace such as the commonalty desires, but cannot yet
be made generally, since the king will never grant any 'religion-freedt.'
Yet the wisest sort in a manner desire peace ; for in
purchasing their peace they suffer as much as if they were in
They write from Italy that the king is providing for great sums
of money, to renew the war here sharply. He seems to be revived
by the dissension of the States, and by reason of the news from
Mesopotamia touching the overthrow of the Turk, given by the
Sophy, near Euphrates. They write there were slain as good as
50,000, and affirm that Mustaffa with all the rest of his army are
shut up in such straits that they cannot well escape ; that he had
attempted to break out, but could not. Some write from Italy that
there is a secret report of the Turk having been slain by his own
The Estates camp is about Bois-le-duc and Breda for the most
part ; others are in good number as yet in Flanders. As for the
Spaniards the most part are about Limburg and Maestricht,
amongst whom are as good as 4,500 reiters. Within these two
months came 2,500 new reiters under one of the Dukes of Lauenburg,
at whose arrival Duke Eric of Brunswick was discharged with
his 3,000 reiters. Item : Colonel Bremdell, brother to the Elector of
Mentz, and governor of 'Friburche' [qy. Fridberg] in Wetterau
near Frankfort, has 1,000 reiters, and Antony van Eltz, brother to
the Elector of 'Tryre,' has 1,000 reiters among the Spaniards. The
bruit is great that the Duke of Terra Nova is come near to 'Colleyn,'
who will be the general conductor of the King's army ; in which
the discipline and order is better than in the States' army, where for
the present there is none.
Having got thus far, I hear from M. de Meetkerke, who returned
yesterday from Artois, that there is greater hope than men thought
of reconciling them of Artois to the States. If they agree in a short
time, I hope well of things ; but if it be deferred a month, it is like
to cause an extreme perturbation among the States.—Ghent,
6 Jan. 1578.
P.S.—As I was ready to shut up my letter, Meetkerke came to
me and told me that the dispute with the Walloons consists in these
terms, whether or not la Motte should be comprehended in the
agreement. Some of the Estates fear if they agree with Montigny
and Hèze only, that their soldiers will retire to la Motte, who since
my coming into the country has agreed upon certain conditions
with them of St. Omer, so that he is able to stir up more tumults
than the Walloons have done. St. Omer and the rest of Artois
require the pacification of Ghent to be observed.
Add. Endd. 5 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 11.]
497. MM. DE FROIDMONT and MARTINI to the ESTATES.
We informed you in ours of the 13th ult. and 1st inst. of our
representations on your behalf to the Duke of Anjou. Awaiting
your decision we have in the meantime repaired to the town of
Mons to serve the common cause in respect of the alterations
which have taken place there. Arriving on the 3rd we heard
that his Highness had by letter charged M. de Froidmont, with
Count Lalaing, to take order for the appeasement of those alterations.
In pursuance of which, in presence of the said count and the prelate
of Maroilles, and in full assembly of the magistrates and many of
the notables we represented the great displeasure which had been
caused to his Highness and your lordships by the said alterations,
and that they should be on their guard lest by such commotions an
opening should be given to the secret practices of the enemy, and
total ruin result to the common cause. They answered agreeably
to their letter to his Highness, and we hope that by the
vigilance of the Count and the magistrates aided by the notables
and the best of the citizens the town will henceforth be in greater
On the 5th we returned to this town of Condé, hoping that you
would have sent us word of your decision. Having up to
now no news of it we are in a difficulty what to do, seeing that if
we return to you without satisfying the Duke of Anjou we are
assured that he would at once return ill-content to France ; which
would, it seems to us, be very prejudicial to the common cause.—
Condé, 8 Jan. 1579.
Copy. Endd. by L. Tomson. Fr. 1½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 12.]
498. ROGERS to WALSINGHAM.
This morning I received the Queen's packet, which, as appears by
the date, has been long on the way. I thought good to advertise
you now of its receipt, having to send to Bruges ; whence Mr
Stokes is to forward any letter on to you.
Since I last wrote, la Motte went about to besiege Winoxberg,
situated 3 or 4 miles from Dunkirk ; intending to revenge the death
of 35 gentlemen, of whom I wrote in my first letter, who were slain
by the 'bowres' about the said town. The frost and time of year
served him conveniently to take it ; but this morning news are
come that he has retired towards Gravelines, without taking the
town, having only spoiled three or four villages about it. This la
Motte has greatly hindered the accord which the Prince labours to
make with the Walloons ; wherefore seeing the state of this
country specially requires a speedy agreement with both them and
the Artesians, and as they only make delays, the Prince sent a
gentleman two days ago to M. de 'Burse' and the rest of the four
Members of Flanders who are treating with them, to 'make short,'
and know of them whether they will agree or have war. To-day he
is to return, and I will not fail to write what answer he brings, if
I do not come myself. It is evident the Walloons have secret
favourers both in Flanders and in other provinces. As for them
of Artois they sent word yesterday to the Prince that they 'are not
meant' to separate from the rest of the States ; but beseech
them to prepare to treat with the Spaniards for a general pacification,
of which they understand by Count Schwarzenberg there is
good hope. That Count has written to the Archduke Matthias that
there are but two points in which he and the Spaniards stick, and
that he trusts to compass his desire in these also. Howbeit the
wiser sort do not see how so general pacification may be made ; for
they are persuaded that neither will the King of Spain ever permit
the 'Religion freedt,' nor will those who have obtained this liberty
of religion now abandon it. God grant that the Estates may in
time agree with the Walloons and Artesians ; which being brought
to pass I foresee how they may deal with the Spaniards and secure
their liberty ; whereas if they stay long treating with them, I see
their ruin to be at hand.
Concerning my negotiation with the Duke, he is well content with
Mr Davison, as Mr Davison will find when he comes. He caused
one of the Duke's men to tell M. Beutrich that he had painted him
forth by his letters to the Lords of the Council, which message was
'done' to Beutrich the day I arrived at Ghent. Since he wrote to
you he has given Mr Davison to understand that he has been even
with him, and that now they are friends. Being charged by me
before M. Languet with saying that he would have caused Mr Davison
to be stayed in the town of Ghent had he then known as much as
he has since learned by my negotiation (as Mr Davison told me at my
departure from Antwerp) he openly protested it was a detestable
lie and that he never thought it ; because, as he affirmed, he could
not make up his mind whether my negotiation more accused the
Duke or excused Mr Davison, and that the Earl of Leicester seemed to
have taken a middle way.—Ghent, 9 Jan. 1578.
Add. Endd. 2½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 13.]
499. MM. DE FROIDMONT and MARTINI to the ESTATES.
In our letters of the 31st ult. and the 1st and 8th inst. we
informed you how the Duke of Anjou is ready shortly to return to
France, not well content, unless you give him satisfaction at least
in the shape of some town more convenient than this for his abode.
Having up to now no answer nor instruction, and having a hint
from his Highness that he means to start for France next Monday,
we would not refrain from asking you kindly to advise me with all
speed of your decision as to what representation we should make
on his departure. Among his reasons for withdrawing we believe
that the inconvenience and discomfort of these quarters is not the
least ; inasmuch as for his personal accommodation he has to be
content with two small rooms which admit of neither fire nor
ventilation, and for his meals, with a small saloon and incommodious
The report is current here, though we can hardly believe it,
that in the assembly of the Estates of Artois the deputies from
Hainault, Lille, Douay and Orchies, have jointly among themselves
and without including the generality and the common cause,
decided to enter into correspondence on the subject of peace with
the Prince of Parma, and to this end have sent their deputies to
him ; whereof we have thought good to inform you that you may
take order accordingly.—Condé, 9 January 1579.
Copy. Endd. by L. Tomson. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XI. 14.]
500. The ESTATES OF ARTOIS and deputies of other Provinces
to the ESTATES-GENERAL.
As we promised in our last, we have drawn up and now send you
the articles which on mature deliberation we have found necessary,
on the basis of the pacification of Ghent and the subsequent union
which we would on no account abandon, with a view to an assured
peace. We have taken trouble to make them reasonable, that
neither his Majesty nor another may have occasion to reject them.
In this way it is to be hoped that if you will seriously aim at it, you
will attain to a sure and general peace. We earnestly beg you to
let us know our intentions at once, inasmuch as the evil that we
feel in our entrails permits no longer delay. If within a month we
do not see the effectual accomplishment of what we have written to
you, we shall for the discharge of our duty be forced to consider of
a remedy.—The Abbey of St. Vaast, Arras, 9 Jan. 1579. By order
of the Estates. (Signed) P. Marchant.
Copy (sent by Davison). Fr. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 15.]
501. Another copy. Endd.: Lettre des Etats d'Artois. 1 p.
[Ibid. XI. 15a.]
502. FREMYN to DAVISON.
Since your departure they have been trying (on est après) to find
means of relieving Carpen, which is besieged by the Spaniards.
Count 'Holo.' and M. de Ville have to-day been speaking to the
French and Scottish colonels on the subject. Their reply was that
if they would let them have some money to satisfy their people,
they were ready to go anywhere. There is little likelihood of
relieving Carpen without money.
The Emperor's ambassador arrived last evening. To-day he has
been to the States. His proposal will be known to-morrow.
It is said that the States offer Monsieur Mechlin, Vilvorde, and
Nivelles, pending the decision of the States-General, to satisfy him
in full. They are trying to fix the place for the meeting of the
States-General. None has been settled upon ; but it is thought it
will be here.—Antwerp, 9 Jan. 1579.
Add. Signed in full. Fr. 2/3 p. [Ibid. XI. 16.]
503. THOMAS EGERTON to BURGHLEY.
On receipt of your lordship's I conferred with the company and
resolved to satisfy you by these few lines which follow.
The company thank you for your care of their causes, especially
in forbearing to allow the Alderman of the 'stilliard' any 'remain'
of cloths until you were further informed by the company of such
matters as might 'move stay' of the same. And whereas the said
Alderman has informed you that our company resident at Hamburgh
voluntarily yielded the house to the chief governors there the day
before St. Katherine's day, please understand that by force of the
intimation given to our company long before at Hamburgh whereby
we were 'denounced to be used as strangers' after St. Katherine's
day, as by copy of the decree herewith sent you may plainly perceive,
and a bill set up upon the house, offering the same 'to be
sold from us,' our company, being restrained from our privileges, had
no cause to use the house ; and understanding that her Majesty's
letter had come to the 'steedes,' against whose decrees they of
Hamburgh protest they can do nothing for our jurisdiction
and residence (notwithstanding the alderman's untrue assertion to
the contrary), on Nov. 21 last they presented to the Senate the keys
of the house. This was done only to feel their dispositions, and see
whether they would relent or not, being done in such order of
courtesy as has been shown them here.
On this presentation, two of the Senate appointed to take the
keys uttered these words : that it was very well done of the
company so to do by their surrender, for if any mischance had
happened to the house after the time limited, the company would
have been answerable.
In the custom house there they are already making enquiry and
keeping note whether any cloth is sold by our company to strangers.
Of this the parties buying are forced to deliver them a bill, of
whom they buy their cloths, whether of the burgesses or of
Englishmen, agreeably with their former inhibition ; which proves
they mean to take all the advantage they can, and maintain their
It is to be understood that strangers may sell to none within the
town of Hamburgh but only to the burgesses, 'upon a great pain,'
into which predicament it is to be feared they mean to bring us,
directly against the ancient treaties.
All this and their manifest evil intent to us being considered, it is
besought that as in six months' time there has appeared no
disposition in them to show favour for the use of our liberty, and
forasmuch as the information given by the company against the
said Alderman and those of the House for their usage of us is true
and will be sufficiently justified by lawful testimony, if it please
you so to appoint, the company humbly beg that you will forbear to
consent them any 'remain' of licence to ship at all, till other
order be taken for their and our reciprocal traffic.—London,
10 Jan. 1578. (Signed) Tho. Egerton, deputy.
Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 17.]
504. ROSSEL to WALSINGHAM.
Some of the statements I have sent you will have been regarded
as trivial, and especially where I treated of the Prince's intelligence
with the Duke of Anjou ; which will be found accurate as time goes
on. That you may know the next step, one of the Duke's favourite
negotiators, being guaranteed by some of their party, has in my
presence confessed that some had advised the Duke—half-specifying
the Prince—that he ought to seize the town of Mons in lieu of
Landrecies and Quesnoy. After the failure that occurred, he sought
to retain him, offering him the town of Ath in Hainault where the
Prince of Orange has a garrison, or else to come to Mechlin, the
Duke having required from the Prince some security—what, I could
not learn—subject to which he might delay his departure ; although
he had promised his brother to return to France. Some of his
people advise him to go forward as far as La Fère, where staying,
he will keep the Estates in suspense, to bring them to his wishes
and finally get what he wants. Monsieur and all his partisans are
in such straits, he at Condé, where they of Valenciennes have sent a
garrison, that they know not what they should resolve. The
Estates are sincerely desirous to send away all the French.
To make a beginning his Highness sent for me to the Council of
State, and they asked me to undertake the business of getting out
of the country by the shortest road into France all Casimir's men,
with whom they have agreed for a month's pay down ; the rest to
be payable in three instalments at Frankfort Fair.
Disagreeable as this job is I have of necessity undertaken it while
wishing to hear from you, hoping to cut down my commission to
12 or 15 days, and get rid of others, if you think good.
The Emperor's ambassador Schwarzenberg arrived at Antwerp
on the 8th. On the 10th he reported as to the peace conference,
which he has successfully set on foot, two points being reserved on
which it seems possible to treat ; one, the Reformed Religion, the
exercise of which it will be possible to allow where it exists at
present. This conference and proposal will have to be settled by
the Electors deputed thereto ; his journey serving one end only,
Unt (sic) moneat potentiam. This conference will keep the provinces
Meanwhile the question of the States-General meeting at Brussels
is continued. Deputies from that town have been at Antwerp five
days, begging to conduct his Highness and the States thither. They
are sticking over the dispute as to having the Walloons to guard
the States, of which the Brussels people are suspicious. When they
asked my advice, I told them they ought to admit 6 ensigns of
Walloons, 3 of English and 3 of Germans. The English being
friends to their country, and not suspected, backed by the Germans,
could with the citizens bring the Walloons to order if they broke
out or continued after their custom. His Highness has undertaken
to lay the proposal before the Estates on the part of the Brussels
people ; but Count Schwarzenberg's return has delayed it.
During all these conferences the enemy would gladly take advantage
of the frost to surprise some towns and for other practices,
were they not of such poor stuff (de si bas alloy et poix), being as it
were starved in all the places where they command. For the sake
of food they have been compelled to march their army to Carpen
near Cologne, which place they have besieged in reliance on the
frost ; but if a thaw comes, it is safe. They had brought up 26
ensigns to Louvain with the idea of thinking about Vilvorde ; into
which some Germans were straightway put, and the place supplied,
and the soldiers there paid. The like at Maestricht, Herentals, and
Similarly money has been sent to Cambray, where the soldiers in
the citadel had mutinied at the instigation of the Bishop ; who ten
days ago arrived at Câteau Cambresis, whence he practised the
soldiers and others in the town, backed by some gentlemen of
All this week they have been discussing the matter of sending
away the reiters, which it was impossible to do on the conditions
demanded by them. In spite of all their threats, I think they will
be compelled to accept the original condition, which was that all
the troopers should retire with a month's pay, and the rittmeisters,
captains, and gentlemen should be entertained at 1,500 florins a
day, until they have been finally satisfied, which with time it will
be possible to do.
The Walloons and malcontents have come to terms. It remains
to make the payment promised.
The Prince of Orange is still at Ghent. The princess has started,
there to have her new A. (so they say)—I leave you to guess the
rest. Others say it is to bid good-bye to gossip Casimir, who is
about to depart ; leaving his household, however.
There is announced the death of Don Frederick, son of the Duke
of Alva. They say he has been beheaded, which I cannot believe.
But I must report all occurrents.
I send the letter of Messieurs d' Artois with the instruction
mentioned in my former letters, with the request of those of
Guelders. This is all you will hear till my return.—Antwerp,
10 Jan. 1579.
Add. Endd. Marg. notes by Walsingham and Tomson. Fr.
3¼ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 18.]
505. ROSSEL to WALSINGHAM.
I have been so hurried about setting out to escort the French
companies out of the country, that I almost omitted to tell you the
most notable particulars. They are sending you Bouschot, one of
the Privy Council, on a mission. I have not leisure to report the
terms of his commission, which is not to break off the proposed
marriage between M. d' Alençon and her Majesty ; though beside
other necessities he may discourse of the hope of peace, which is
deplored by the opinion of the majority, inasmuch as it is referred
to the observance of the pacification of Ghent, the principal point
on which the malcontents profess to insist. It seems to me that
there sits the hare, and I perceive that in principem cudetur hœc
faba. You can see it by any former advices, comparing them with
those of the ordinary agents and ambassadors (légateurs) of her
I must not omit to tell you that the Duchess of Parma who was
said to be dead has come to life again and has started in quest of
the Princess of Spain, to marry her to the Emperor.—In haste and
on the point of starting, 10 Jan. 1578.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XI. 19.]
506. DAVISON to LEICESTER.
I was ready to take pen in hand to write to you when this bearer
delivered to me your letter of Dec. 31, finding me in this town. On
the receipt of it I went to kiss the hands of the Prince and Princess
(who are both here), in your behalf. They took your remembrance
so thankfully that they knew not with what service they might
deserve the honour vouchsafed them ; but they told me you might
be assured that in devotion and goodwill so far as their ability went
you would find them inferior to no friends you had. How welcome
your present was, how much it was prized, and how greatly the
Prince thinks his obligations to you increased thereby, this bearer
and Mr Rogers can inform you. I find the like thankfulness in
Duke Casimir both for the rapier with the furniture and for the
horse which you sent him [al. being indeed such jewels as he has
good reason to esteem] ; things so welcome that there scarce comes
any friend to him to whom he does not preach the obligation he has
to you in that and other respects. In sum, you could not have
bestowed these courtesies on men more worthy or more thankful.
The Duke has assured me that he will thank you in England very
shortly. I have done my best to push that journey forward, but of
the time he was not precisely resolved, though I think it will be
within 14 or 15 days at the furthest. Between the Prince and him
I find all things on good terms, only the dislike of Beutrich, who
continues in credit with his master, has somewhat hindered the
frank communication which I know the Prince would otherwise have
used with the Duke.
As for the mal entendu between his Excellency and me in respect
of my negotiation, it is now thoroughly 'appointed,' and our peace
made and confirmed with a treble karouss to the health of her
Majesty and as much to yours, which I assure went very near to
make some of the company sick [al. which went very near to impair
the health of some of the company]. Beutrich and I only remain
yet in some heartburning, but time will easily wear that away [al.
But the jar between Beutrich and me, yet uncompounded, will not
so easily be brought in frame].
For your provision of wines at my coming to Antwerp I will treat
with such of my friends as can give me best counsel in that behalf.
Meantime I think myself greatly honoured that you are pleased to
dispose in any sort of my poor services.
I have not yet spoken with Champagny since the receipt of your
letter. To-morrow I think to visit him and the rest of the prisoners
of your acquaintance, from whom I will not conceal the favour you
have done them. By the accord now passed with the Walloons they
are to be committed into the hands of the Duke of Cleves till their
process be decided ; of which agreement I would have sent you the
details by this bearer, if I could have obtained it before his departure.
But in general I can assure you that it is as agreeable to the
Prince as a good beginning to a reparation of the inward confusions
of this country.
The Emperor's ambassador has returned to Antwerp since my
coming thence. The substance of what he has since laid before the
States is that he has won the Prince of Parma to submit absolutely
to the 'sentence' of the Emperor. If the States also will agree to
this, he doubts not but all will go well. It is disputed whether they
should depend upon the sentence of the Emperor only, or of the
Emperor and her Majesty jointly ; the latter being more generally
affected. But what they will resolve, or what this will grow to, I
Before I left Antwerp they were meaning to send over the
Marquis once again, partly to renew their old course, partly to
entreat her Majesty to employ her credit in mediating this peace ;
but [since he vowed himself to St. Denis, erased] this late lightness
in changing his Patron makes me presume he will find a colder
welcome in England, and not without cause to speak as I think.
I understood from my man now in England that her Majesty has
at length dispatched my poor suit, through your special favour ; for
which as I know not with what words to thank you sufficiently, so
you may be sure that it is bestowed on a man who will never
Draft. Endd. 3 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 20.]
507. Another draft of the first part of the above ; on the reverse
draft of part of the letter of Jan. 27 to the Secretaries, post, No. 540.
2 pp. [Ibid. XI. 20a.]
508. DAVISON to WALSINGHAM.
Draft of the letter of Jan. 13, post, No. 542. Dated : Ghent,
10 Jan. 1578. Endd. 2¼ p. [Ibid. XI. 21.]
509. WALSINGHAM to DAVISON.
Whereas Horatio Pallavicino has of late had his brother arrested
in 'Roome,' and is like to have the same measure measured to him
in Spain upon his factors that traffic for him there, and that only
for a jealousy and surmise conceived of him that he has assisted the
States with some loans of money or merchandize for their necessities
in this war as they interpret, against the king ; forasmuch as some
testimony under your hand, witnessing that he has contracted with
her Majesty and not for the States, and thinks himself bound in
respect of the courtesy he has received in this country to 'enlarge
himself' in her service, may greatly pleasure him towards them
who seek by suggestion of the Spanish Ambassador and others here
to do him all the harm they can ; these are to desire you to give him
a quittance for so much alum as he has delivered, as received by
you for her Majesty's service, that by testimony thereof when shewn,
his adversaries may have less reason to molest him.—London,
10 Jan. 1578.
Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. XI. 22.]
510. WALSINGHAM to DAVISON.
Finding both by your letters and others that Egremond Ratcliffe
was lately executed at Namur, and before his death, as it is said,
confessed that he had been sent over by some one of the Council to
kill Don John ; forasmuch as I understand the said Councillor to be
myself, being loath to have so villainous a slander given out against
me, I have written the enclosed to the Emperor's ambassador
praying him to procure me a copy of Egremond's confession ; which
I desire may be conveyed with all speed. Also I pray you to use
what means you can yourself to obtain the confession, and to learn
what speeches he uttered at the time of his death ; for though by
torture he might be drawn to utter an untruth, I cannot think him
so devilish but that at the time of his death he would revoke what
before he had untruly uttered. Pray use some care and diligence in
this cause, for I would be loath that my poor credit, which I hold
more dear than my life, should be long subject to so villainous a
slander.—London, 10 Jan. 1578.
P.S. (in Walsingham's hand).—The merchants' post desired me
to pray you that hereafter he may not be stayed by you as he has
been ; which has been greatly prejudicial to him.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 23.]