88. HODDESDON to WALSINGHAM.
Since I sent you the States' answer to my late commission, I
have received no advice how it is liked. Yet as I understand from
Mr Gilpin that the form of the bonds lately sent to him disagrees
in some points with that answer, I thought good not to proceed any
further without some directions from you ; for as it may appear by
my letter to the Lord Treasurer, yourself, and Sir Walter Mildmay,
I took the aforesaid resolution at the States' hands not as a thing
fully accepted, but only as a matter to be referred to you. So if
you will have the particular obligation demanded for the interest of
one year according to the meaning of the States' answer, they of
this town are ready to accomplish it ; which is as much as when
I was in Holland the rest of the States could induce them to. Nor
do they seem willing to bind themselves after any other sort, lest
the States should thereby become negligent in contenting her
Majesty, and so the whole debt be at last transferred only to them.
By means of the stay which is being made with Jacques le Roy
in receiving the rest of the bargain of powder, he has sold away a
great part of it to others, and now lately 10,000 weight to the
munition-masters of this town, finding 'the choice in England so
curious' that he is as ready to leave off the accomplishing of his
bargain for the provision of her Majesty, as I am to release him
According to yours of the 10th, which I received to-day, the
bringer of it shall be furnished with 100 marks, or as much as he
shall need, to make provision of the things he is to buy for your
use.—Antwerp, 18 March 1580.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XIV. 43.]
89. STOKES to WALSINGHAM.
My last to you was the 12th, since which time these 'speeches
have happened.' This week the Four Members of Flanders had an
enterprise upon 'Betewne,' to have taken it by surprise, by means
of some intelligence they had in the town. They gathered all their
forces to the number of 9 cornets of horse and 20 ensign of foot,
and one M. de Tiant was the commander of them for this journey.
In marching thither, in the enemy's country beside Belle, by
means of a river, they were forced to pass through a village
under the government of the Malcontents, called Merville, wherein
were 70 soldiers to keep it ; who with the peasants of that village
and thereabouts to the number of 400 would not suffer them to
pass, and so they rang their alarm bell and gave the first charge,
and slew 7 or 8 Scots at the first blow, and there was also slain the
lieutenant of M. de Tiant ; and then all the States' force charged
them and drove them into the church, and set fire to it, and burnt
them all. And besides this they burnt every house in the village,
which is within two leagues of Béthune ; so that this fire being in
the night made an alarm through all Artois, for which cause they
did not go forward, but retired back again to Poperingen, and thence
every man went to his garrison again.
M. Montigny, lying at 'Ghetringsberghe,' hearing of this,
incontinently marched towards them with 7 cornets of horse, and
came yesterday morning to Cortryk, and there stayed till 4 in the
afternoon, and then departed with his 7 cornets and 600 foot, whom
he took with him from thence, and 'by report that saw him' go out
of Cortryk, he had with him 30 or 40 trumpeters. So he came hard
to 'Dixmewe' where the States' men lay, and were gone before he
came ; and now he is returned to Armentieres, and it is thought he
will have a revenge on those parts ere long.
By letters from Artois it seems there is some trouble at Mons,
because the Prince of Parma seeks to bring some soldiers into the
town, which Count de Lalaing and the burghers will not suffer.
'It is' also greatly 'misliked of' divers principal towns in Artois
and 'Henogo,' because they have agreed to take the aid of the
Spaniards ; for which cause at Lille they have much ado to keep their
'commers' in quiet.
The Malcontents have paid their soldiers for one month ; the
money came out of the purses of the 'sprytealtie' of Artois and
The Prince of Epinoy has lately taken into his hands all the
riches of the spiritualty in Tournay, and it is much hoped he will
give the Protestants of that town a church to preach in ; for there
are in Tournay 4,000 houses of the Religion. So there go great
good speeches of that prince.
These parts long greatly for the coming of Monsieur's forces,
for it seems to them they tarry very long ; and still the speech
continues here that they march, but nothing follows.—Bruges,
19 March 1580.
Add. Endd. 1¾ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XIV. 44.]
90. The KING OF SPAIN to the PRINCE OF PARMA.
On behalf of the English contained in a memorial enclosed herein,
drawn up by Don Juan de Idiaques ; we have been told that each of
them had in those states the entertainment monthly stated in the
memorial ; and that last year, 1580, in virtue of the general rearrangement,
it was taken away from them, and they besought us to let it
return ; and we, considering their quality, and the causes for which
they have left their country as Catholic Christians, have deemed it
good. Wherefore we charge and command you that you give order
that from the date of the said rearrangement the same entertainments
may be continued and paid to them monthly as are declared
in the memorial, at the time and in the manner that the soldiers of
that army are paid, so long as they reside in those states.—Tomar,
20 March 1581.
Copy. Endd. Sp. On a half sheet. [Spain I. 66.]
91. The DUKE OF ANJOU to the QUEEN.
Requests that she will give a favourable hearing to the commissioners.
—Bordeaux, 20 March 1581. Autograph signature.
Add. Endd. by L. Tomson. Broadsheet. Fr. [France V. 34.]
92. COBHAM to —.
Although I supposed you are well advertised of Don Antonio's
affairs I will not omit to tell you what I have received concerning
them. There is come to Antonio Brito de Pimentel at Tours, a
servant of Don Diego di 'Botiglio.' He left Lisbon on Feb. 19,
being sent by Diego's wife ; and declares that there is great seeking
for Don Antonio in Portugal. Likewise the ships remain at Lisbon,
about which, and the castle, there are 2,000 Spaniards for the
defence of the Duke of Alva and the town. The opinion was that
the Duke and Don Juan de Silva, with part of these, would go to
Badajos, and Don 'Graviel' Ninio remain in the castle with the
King Philip intends to 'keep his three estates' at Tomar or
Abrantes, which ever shall be clearest of the plague. Nothing is
heard of any town that have taken arms or rebelled against him,
but they are ready if succour comes.
Antonio de Brito has assured Queen Mother that Don Antonio
never sought pardon of the King of Spain, for if he were taken,
there would be no remission for him ; wherefore he would never
condescend to it on any persuasion.
An Italian lately come from Bordeaux gives out that Don
Antonio is within 15 leagues of those parts where Monsieur is,
accompanied by Don Diego di Botiglio and the Count of Vimioso.
He has made some description of their persons, but his report is
not yet credited, but rather esteemed untrue.—Blois, 22 March 1580.
Add. and endt. gone. 1 p. [France V. 35.]
93. COBHAM to [? WILSON].
I thought it well to send this bearer to you with this packet, that
he might take occasion to enlarge to you 'the pretence he has
to persuade a voyage' to the Azores. 'II signor' Brito Pimentel
wrote to me by him, requesting I would recommend that action.
There is some appearance that the enterprise may be just and
profitable ; the more so, since the said Brito undertakes to procure
Don Antonio's letters to the governors and chief officers of the
Azores. Whence it appears their king is not far from hence, or else
they have certain hope of his coming into these parts.
MM. de Richelieu and la Fin have repaired to Signor Brito, and
used 'persuasions to wish him' to consent that some ships might
pass from hence towards those islands with the favour of Don
Antonio, which he agreed to. But the Queen Mother 'differs' and
'prolongs' those enterprises ; with What mind, is doubted, though
she shows to have great feeling of the Spanish artifices. Notwithstanding,
hitherto nothing goes forward but in a dissembling wary
manner, so that the wind may drive the shower to fall on any
I am told that M. Villeroy has brought some 'plausible resolution'
in Monsieur's affairs from the king, but as yet I am persuaded to
believe that opinion but slowly. They think his Highness will
repair hitherward after Easter.
The State of Venice cannot be induced to credit that the Christian
King has any enterprise in hand against the Catholic King ; concerning
which purpose I have passed many speeches with Queen Mother
upon occasion of her words in conference.
I understand that my cousin Elianor Bridges' affection, or some
manner of the 'passage' of the same, has offended her Majesty ;
wherein I beseech you to bestow your favourable speeches for the
recovery of her favour towards her and to lessen her fault.—Blois,
Add. and endt. gone. 1 p. [Ibid. V. 36.]
94. COBHAM to [the SECRETARIES].
Though there is at present no great matter to signify, I would
not fail to advertise that the king has not only recovered from his
sickness, having passed his time in some pleasant sports at Paris,
but also sat in the Court of Parliament, showing himself there, as
is this day signified by the courier who brought the intelligence to
the queens. He has further assured his mother that he will be
here on the Wednesday in Easter week ; whereon two 'furnitures
of lodging' have been sent from here, to be 'placed in the way for
The Queen Mother has well recovered her health. Yesterday
morning she gave me leave to have access to her while she was
walking in her garden ; using many speeches to me, which were
uttered very affectionately towards her Majesty, with desire of good
assurance of amity, both by marriage and otherwise. [Tomson
makes a note of this in the margin.] Whereon it seems they make
a stay of their proceedings till that foundation be made to their
desires ; which has moved them to hasten the commissioners'
She told me however that the Prince Dauphin has earnestly
requested that the other commissioners might not pass over to
England till he had overtaken them ; alleging that the others had
had a month's warning, and he required but half a month to put
himself in order to do their Majesties and Monsieur honour, and
appear before the Queen as one of the rank he holds. He went
from hence towards Paris on the 17th. I visited him and did
reverence to him, finding him 'most willing of' the journey. He
means to be accompanied by divers gentlemen of Touraine and of
I am informed that young Count Brissac is gone to Marshal
Cossé, and that divers gentlemen of great family are going in the
company of the commissioners, as the son and heir of Count Saint-Aignan,
and M. de 'Scipier.'
I moved the Queen on behalf of the English merchants 'trading
Rouen,' of certain 'extremities' done them by those of that city ;
and she has written very earnest letters to the Eschevins and officers
for their relief. I have sent you their notes and requests, that I
may have your further commands therein. I also moved her
Majesty, upon the information of the same merchants, that whereas
a French pirate named Mattart had taken an English ship called
the Mayflower at the mouth of the Seine, restitution might be made
of the ship and goods and such punishment done upon the malefactors
as in those cases is provided. She has written to M. de
It seems that the enterprise for the relief of Cambray goes forward
but 'staggeringly' ; which is imputed to the government of Fervaques
not being acceptable to the king, nor of such quality [sic] that
sundry gentlemen like to be commanded by him in that action. I
hear the king had in some sort signified as much to Monsieur, and
M. Bonivet has repaired to his Highness to 'make overture' of divers
gentlemen who are willing to serve him if they may be commanded
by a person of quality agreeable to them. M. de Rochepot is looked
for here within two or three days, being unwilling to serve under
In her conference with me, the Queen Mother enlarged upon the
grief she sustained that those matters succeeded no better ; showing
great mislike of the person and manner of Fervaques. She
concluded that she hoped Villeroy, whom she looked for to-day,
would bring the king's resolution on behalf of Monsieur's enterprises.
M. de Villequier has been here these ten days. The Queen Mother
has had 'often and private' conferences with him, as a person most
'confident' to the king.
A courier passed to-day from his Highness, to entreat their
Majesties to shew favour to M. 'St. Ligier,' who is still in prison
at Paris for the disorder he committed ; so it is the opinion that his
life will be saved. The same courier brings intelligence of Monsieur
and the Queen of Navarre coming to 'Boure' [Bourg-sur-Gironde]
to a house of M. de Lansac's, where they mean to hold their Easter.
The King of Navarre and his sister are gone to Bazas to celebrate
their Easter, with the intention of meeting his Highness after these
feasts at Montferrant, within two leagues of Bordeaux.
All things pass very well towards the confirmation of the peace,
saving that they of Dauphiné stand on certain points, to have the
keeping of a few towns for some months to come.
There are no present preparations of shipping for Portugal in
Strozzi brought Count Rochefoucault in the evening of the
12th inst. to Queen Mother, by whom he was graciously received
and entertained with good admonitions. He has now returned to
his own house a few leagues hence, where he remains. The Duke
of Bouillon and his brother, after passing some days in this Court,
where they were well received by Queen Mother and otherwise
honoured, have returned to their mother at Sedan. The duke
means to make his 'repair and abode' in this Court. The young
brother, I hear, has a disposition to pass into England, in the
company of the Prince Dauphin.
I have been informed by a merchant of Rochelle that M.
Châtillon having been there about 14 days sold his horses and
embarked ; but for what place he knows not. I have not been
otherwise advertised of this.
The same merchant told me that he had sued to the Council on
behalf of the township of Rochelle, that whereas a new subsidy
was put upon the 'carseys' and cloths, at the rate of two sous on
the cloth, they might be released from that imposition, since it was
against their privileges. The Council have considered, and granted
them a relaxation for a time, till their Majesties give orders for the
further execution or abolition of the imposition. However, I have
not been advertised of this by any English merchant 'trading
M. de Rohan still remains at Rochelle.
M. de Vendôme, of the House of Savoy, a prelate not of very
discreet 'government,' is by order of Malta, and the Consistory of
Rome, deprived of his priorate of Auvergne ; which is meant for
the son of Madame de Rohan, who formerly 'made claim to have
been esteemed' wife to the Duke of Nemours.
The plague not only continues, but begins to increase at
The Muscovite's ambassador in Rome is lodged in the Duke of
Sora's house, where he is highly entertained ; whereby it appears
that the practices of the Pope have been 'enlarged' into most part
of Christendom. It may prove dangerous to all Princes, if God put
not into their hearts the means to redress it in time while there is
An ambassador is looked for at Rome from the King of Sweden,
with commission to render the King's obedience to the Romish
It is advertised from Malta that on account of the Pope's illsatisfaction
with the Grand Master, the Nations had assembled a
council and resolved to send ambassadors to pacify him. Among
them was appointed for Italy the Prior of Naples, and for Castile 'il
Baglivo Duero.' It is hoped the matter will be accommodated.
The Pope's ratifying and confirming of the bull de alienandis
bonis ecclesiasticis' and his ordaining of four cardinals, Orsino,
Maffei, Albano, and Vecelli, for the execution of it, is not acceptable
to the Christian King and the principal personages of this realm.
Marcantonio, viceroy of 'Cecilia,' has used great charity to the
prisoners of that kingdom, having with his wife humbled himself
to dine with the Capuccini.
The Emperor is thought by his physicians to be reduced to
extremity, and by reason of his sickness to have become 'impotent
of succession.' There is no great expectation of a continuance of
Cardinal Riario is expected at Rome, and King Philip being now
established in Portugal, Cardinal Granvelle 'makes means' to
return thither also.
It is thought a peace will be concluded between the Muscovite
and the king of Polonia, on condition that part of Livonia shall be
given to Poland.
The King of Spain has lately obtained peace for three years with
the Grand Signior. I leave the information on the affairs of Portugal
to this bearer, who is very well instructed therein.
It is certified from Germany that 'Ernestus de Baviera' is gone
toward Liège to be installed bishop there ; and that certain landsknechts
have marched to Cambray for the service of King
It is understood that the Venetians have demanded of the king
140,000 or 160,000 crowns which he owes the state ; alleging that
they are to pay the debts which they incurred in the wars against
the Turk, 'having imposed' on the city of Venice only 2,000,000 to
be paid in 'terms of year.'
Companies are levying in the territory of Florence for the service
of Don Pietro, who is looked for out of Spain ; but which way they
will be employed, is not stated.
Villeroy is now arrived from the King ; and la Fin is looked for
to-day or to-morrow.
'L'abbate di Guadagna' has returned from the king, on his
dispatch to Rome.
It is given out in this Court (Queen Mother being advertised of
it) that the King of Scots is in the hands of certain papists who
have made themselves strong ; and that the Earl of Morton was
slain in prison.—Blois, 22 March 1580.
Add. and endt. gone. 4 pp. [France V. 37.]
95. COBHAM to —.
Having 'commodity' to write by this bearer, I would say that
whereas upon your former letter I had sent to Morlaix and the
parts of Britanny, to see such shipping as was along the coast, the
party whom I sent returned this morning, telling me that four
ships, commanded by captains of the Religion and 'named' to
belong to M. de Rohan, have gone out of the river of Nantes.
Two other ships have left Nantes, sent by order of M. Strozzi,
commanded by Captain Antoine Scarlin, who was captain in the
galleys, and Captain Laillet. Moreover three or four other ships
are preparing for the voyage to 'the new found lands.' The rest
of the barks are of small importance.
At Croisic there are about 15 vessels preparing for the 'new
found lands,' most of which are commanded by captains of the
Religion, but neither warlikely appointed nor strongly manned.
At Morlaix there are 5 or 6 ships, 'addressing themselves'
towards Spain ; but they 'stay to pass' as yet. Also other vessels
setting in order for the new found lands, not warlikely appointed.
At St. Malo there are 4 or 5 merchant ships rigging to go to
Spain, and sundry preparing for the new found lands, but in no
So in Britanny there is at present no appearance of any
embarking ; rather they of Nantes and other towns are in doubt
of those companies which lately passed, and the townsmen make
a privy watch without weapons. Howbeit, those in the towns walk
at the gates with watchful eyes, and have resolved among themselves
not to permit any forces to approach.
The party made offer of himself among the captains and
shipmasters as one willing to serve in any voyage to Scotland or
England, but could discover nothing meant.
M. de Chàtillon has been at Vitry since leaving Nantes, and
went to visit M. des Réaux [qu. Rieux], his cousin. Thence he went
to a town of his own in Britanny.
The Captain of Angers is at Montagu ; but Captain Gasgon (?)
is still in the castle with about 20 soldiers, having orders not to
depart thence till the town is dismantled. The soldiers who were
in the town have bestowed themselves among the companies, which
are said to belong to Marshal Biron, having lately passed about
Ronees not far from Angers.
The companies of M. de Lancosme have passed on the other
side of the river and lodged about Porte de la Pille. M. de
Lancosme is to-day come to Court from Paris with the Viscount de
la Garche, who is gone to Monsieur.
Monsieur has given audience to a 'principal person' who has
come to him from Portugal. His name is not known to me ; but
the party who saw him said he was of high stature, a comely
personage, with four waiting on him.
There is some doubt the King will not be here so soon as was
thought, because he is sometimes 'encumbered with a fainting.'
I am given to understand that Monsieur 'should' come to
Poitiers, accompanied by the Queen of Navarre ; of which this
bearer can better 'ascertain' you.
Viscount Turenne is employed to bring those of Dauphiné to
agree to the pacification. It is however advertised that they have
sent 40,000 crowns into Germany by M. Calignon, chancellor of
that province, for the cause of Religion ; whom the Duke of
Maine sought to have entrapped, but 'came short of his enterprising.'
Secretary Villeroy has, I am informed, imparted to the king
certain privy articles and agreements which have passed between
Monsieur, the King of Navarre, and them of the Religion.
Monsieur's servants have now conceived a new hope, that the
king will favour the enterprise for the relief of Cambray ; but the
issue is doubtful.
M. de Laval has been with Monsieur, and is now returned to
Laval, his house, having assured his Highness of his service.
The preachers in the Court have 'persuaded' that none can
receive the Sacrament worthily, who enjoy any of the Church
livings ; 'a doctrine not easily believed of the courtiers.'
This bearer seems well satisfied with the answers he received
from Monsieur on the affairs committed to him.—Blois, 23 March
P.S. (autograph ?)—The Count of Vimioso has been with Monsieur
at Bordeaux. By him there is more certain news of Don
Add. and endt. gone. 2 pp. [France V. 38.]
96. The DUKE OF MONTPENSIER to the QUEEN.
Thanks her for selecting him and his son as commissioners, but
regrets that his age and his health will not allow him to serve.—
Champigny, 23 March.
Apparently holograph. Signature cut ofF. Endd. by L. Tomson.
Fr. 1 p. [France V. 39.]
97. Cobham to —.
It seems that this succouring of Cambray breeds much trouble in
their minds and 'travaileth their Majesties' sprights.' For the
king, though he is inclined to favour his brother, and is persuaded
in some sort to be content that Monsieur should advance himself,
his inclination is to enjoy repose and pass his time in pleasures,
being not at all desirous of wars. The rather, because there are
some persons who have laid before his eyes the weak state of the
realm ; as the want of money, and that his companies of ordnance
are badly horsed and worse armed, nothing in order. So
that if he should be 'charged with enemies' upon his frontiers,
there is no means ready to withstand.
The Queen Mother has within these two days shed 'of her tears,'
being irresolute in this action ; for on the other side she fears the
Spanish king, and 'doubts the adventure of Monsieur's person,'
seeing the weakness of the King. She would gladly be 'resolved'
of the Queen's assurance in these actions ; fearing lest she should
not stand by them as they will need. I cannot enlarge any further
hereof, because M. de Nery hastes away.—Blois, Good Friday.
P.S—Only this much : that the Prince of Parma sent lately to
the king that if the prepared French forces approached Cambray,
he had means to find a way to encounter them within the realm of
France. The king is moved by this message, and has answered the
prince that if he passed six paces within his frontier he would make
him recoil . . . . . .
Add. and endt. gone. 1 p. [France V. 40.]
98. STOKES to WALSINGHAM.
My last was the 19th inst., since which time, by great disorder
and want of good government, the Malcontents have 'defeated' 5
cornets of the best horse the States had in Flanders, which was
done as follows.
The enterprise which the Four Members had in hand having
failed, by their letters to M. de Tiant, a young gentleman of small
experience, who had command of their forces for that journey, he
was willed to depart and send every company to its garrison ;
whereupon most of the footmen departed and some of the horse,
and M. de Tiant, with 6 or 7 cornets of horse and 300 foot, stayed
still about 'Dixmewe,' lying 'scattering,' and spoiling the poor
peasants very disorderly. And because the country in those parts
lies so full of water, and the ways so foul, it made them not fear
the enemy ; so that M. de Montigny, who came from Armentieres
to Poperingen, hearing how disorderly those men lay, came on the
sudden at 3 o'clock in the morning on Maundy Thursday, with 6
cornets of horse and 400 foot, who had peasants for their guides,
to bring them to the houses where they lay, and so set upon them.
Yet very few were slain or taken, but most of their horses to the
number of 160, rather more than less, are taken standing in the
peasants' houses. The enemy followed the chase hard to
'Dixmewe,' where they met with 2 cornets of Scots horse and
3 ensigns of foot, who stayed them, and slew almost 100 of them, and
forced them to retire—I mean the enemy. The names of the 5
cornets that are 'defeated' are M. de 'Tillenie,' Captain La Brave,
and Captain le Pine (these three are French cornets), M. de 'Riova,'
and Captain York. None of these were there, for they were gone
to Ghent, and Capt. York had but 35 of his cornet there ; the rest
were at Ghent ; and of these there were 17 or 18 of them with
their horses burnt in a peasant's house by the enemy. M. de
Tiant and his brother, and Capt. le Pine are all very sore hurt,
so that now the enemy may go where they list, for here there is no
man in the field to withstand them. Such is the evil government
that the States have always here in these parts, which are their
chief stay and worst governed. God send it better, or their matters
here in Flanders cannot continue long.
M. de Montigny with all his forces lies at Poperingen. M. la
Motte is there with him, and they are fortifying that place
strongly, which will put the town of 'Iper' to some great distress ;
and it is feared when the ways are a little fairer they will lie
nearer to this town.
And because many speeches go here, which have continued long,
of Monsieur's coming, and nothing else follows, the Four Members
of Flanders being assembled at Ghent have sent a post express
with letters into France to M. de 'Fervacose,' who lies with some
forces in Normandy, to hasten them hitherwards ; for the enemy
grows daily very strong, and as it seems, lies very 'sharply' about
Cambray, by which they are lately 'straited' of many things.
There is also great misliking of Monsieur here, because his
forces tarry so long, he knowing the weakness of the States, chiefly
here in Flanders, and who, after God, trust only in him ; and also
how the enemy grows daily upon them. If these matters be not
speedily holpen in time, it will grow to great displeasure on the
States' side here, or it be long.—Bruges, 26 March 1581.
Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holl, and Fl. XIV. 45.]
99. COBHAM to WALSINGHAM.
I wished the bearer of this to repair to you, being a merchant
'trading Bordeaux,' by whom you might be clearly informed how
the English traders there have been dealt with ; as also that you
might be particularly informed of the letters patent and others that
have been sent from this Court.
I perceive that Monsieur has resolved to keep this Easter at
Libourne because the ways to Bourg were very foul.
It seems that this merchant, by name Thomas Brownebricke, saw
the Count of Vimioso and the entertainment given him by his
The Queen Mother is dispatching M. 'Strosso' to Monsieur, to
conduct the Count into these parts. He would afterwards prepare
for some sea voyage, if the Count does not encourage him to land in
Portugal. But after their old manner in these parts, they are
quickly stirred up to enter, and prepare themselves for enterprises ;
but either their wills or their means fail them before they can
approach the execution, unless such motions or enterprises import
some intestine revenge, wherein they slack not their wills, nor leave
it unaccomplished. So these companies commanded by Fervaques
are likely to vanish, and the succouring of Cambray will come to
small effect, if Monsieur does not approach those parts himself.
This is not desired by the king ; having shown his resolution to be
that first he wishes Monsieur thoroughly to establish and effectuate
the peace, and next, that he bring to good end the marriage with
the Queen. This being performed, the king is content to take
advice, and to join with her Majesty in the consideration of his
brother's enterprises, and assist him thoroughly therein ; and
further whereas he has been pressed to discover his liking to his
brother's enterprise of Flanders, he has flatly refused to speak
clearly, but reserves to deliver his opinion till he can confer with
Monsieur. This conference is now in hand, and an opinion is conceived
that their Majesties will towards May repair to Poitiers.
Till then they seek to 'entertain' Monsieur in those parts, and are
about to dispatch la Fin, to whom the king has spoken and shown
his desire that way. On the other side, I have heard that his
Highness is 'of opinion to' repair towards Flanders or the frontier ;
I cannot learn whether by land or sea.
Such means have heretofore been made, that the King of Navarre
cannot find anyone who dares venture to buy any of his lands, nor
does he get any merchants to buy his woods. So there remain
many difficulties and discontents.
The deputies of Languedoc on parting from the King of Navarre
promised him to publish the peace within 12 days after their return,
and surrender the towns at once ; which is esteemed to be performed.
Viscount Turenne is with his uncle Marshal Montmorency, treating
about the establishment of peace.
The deputies of Dauphiné have returned, and are referred to the
king, because they demanded such matters as Monsieur's commissioners
would not 'stretch unto.' And I am informed that his
Highness had requested the Duke of Montpensier to repair to those
parts, to deal in the establishment of peace, which it is thought will
be 'doomed' by the Duke.
Monsieur has sent for the Prince of Condé to come to him. I
am sorry to hear that the prince remains so ill-satisfied 'of his
being in England.'
M. 'Prunnyo' has been dispatched by his Highness to the
Prince of Orange. Please let the enclosed packet be sent to the
I perceive by M. de Rohan's letters addressed to M. Strozzi that
there is certainly some intelligence between them about a sea
The king has commanded the companies of Lavalette and
Sérillac to be placed in garrison in Saint-Quentin and la Fère.
The Abate del Bene is not yet departed.
Please let me understand her Majesty's mind concerning the
affair of Strozzi, which I wrote of in my former letter ; and further
my request that some of my servants may be returned, for it is a
month since I received any letters.—Blois, 27 March.
P.S.—The king is not looked for till the end of this week at
Add. Endd. 3 pp. [France V. 41.]
100. [? PINART] to [? WALSINGHAM].
I have just received yours of the 25th, which I have imparted to
Marshal Cossé, MM. de Lansac, de Carouges, de la Motte-Fènelon,
President Brisson, and Monsieur's secretary, M. de Vray. We all
feel ourselves greatly bound by the honour that the Queen has
done us, and the arrangements she has ordered for our reception in
her kingdom. As soon as the Prince Dauphin comes, which will
be Wednesday evening, I will let him know the Queen's demonstration
of goodwill in respect of our arrival and mission to her ;
which we hope will be to the glory of God, the advancement of
their Majesties and Monsieur, and the good of Christendom.
Meanwhile the ambassadors who are here thank you much for
your honourable offers, which they promise to requite when the
occasion presents itself. For myself, I am much obliged, and will
acquit it whenever you please to employ me.—Pallais, 27 March
P.S.—I think we shall be ready to embark next Monday at
latest, and sail, if the wind suits, about 6 or 7 a.m. But we must
first know the intentions of the Prince Dauphin ; who we hope
will be here on Wednesday, leaving Paris in post to-day, as he
Signature cut off. Endd. with date only by L. Tomson. Fr. 1 p.
[Ibid. V. 42.]
101. HODDESDON to WALSINGHAM.
Understanding that you meant to buy certain armour for your
own provision, I endeavoured to do you what service I could in
that behalf. But hearing that a friend of mine had lately sent
over 6 corselets of proof, I thought good to advertise you of it, that
if you liked them on sight you might deal further with the party
concerning the price. As I understand he has very good means to
provide the best sort of corselets that are made at Wesel, through
the help of his brother-in-law, being a magistrate of that town,
and one who can do much with all the armourers there. If you
like to see the corselets, John Price will have them brought to you ;
and 'the party that oweth them' will be ready in like case to give
his attendance, for so I have given order to them both.—Antwerp,
28 March 1581.
P.S.—This day I have paid to Adrian Mulan £26 sterling. I
perceive he minds to take no more, because he finds all things
dearer here than he expected ; otherwise I would have furnished
him with 100 marks according to your commission.
Add. Endd. ½ p. [Holl. and Fl. XIV. 46.]
102. [? MADAME PREVOST] to DU BEX.
Before I received your letter I had imparted to my son what it
seemed to me he ought to do touching the affair of which you wrote
to me, and thought he had told you in his letter. It was that I was
minded to offer 7,000 crowns for the procuration, which seemed to me
reasonable, considering the terms on which it was to be had [? ven
selon que l'on en cusze], and would be going back to the rate of that
which was bought last year. However, he told me that they wanted
7,500, which would be secured by some good composition for the
'fourth penny.' It might be so good that I should not be disposed
to stick at the 500 crowns, as it is an opportunity of getting oneself
better liked thereby ; and when one sees an opportunity it
does not do to lose it, however small it be ; since it is bald, and does
not present itself at all times, especially in so chilly (morfondu) a
time as it is at present in this country. I am sure that he will
write you what happens. If I had seen him since I heard of the
opportunity of sending this word, I would have referred him to you.
However, hearing that M. de Néry starts early to-morrow has been
the reason why I have taken pen in hand before my said son's
return ; besides that the less diligent women, to whose number I
belong, fearing lest the said gentleman should start without taking
this [sic] both to tell you that I have received yours after hearing
news of you from him who had it, and to thank you for the gloves
which you were good enough to send me. I think you foresaw the
cold there is here. We have not to reduce our fires because it is
after Easter, rather we need to increase them, for the heavy rains,
hail, and winds which there have been all this month, principally on
Easter Day, when there was such a violent wind in the morning that
when all the people were at church the windows fell down in
St. Mary's and other churches, whereby there was much damage.
At St. Stephen's stones fell from the building by which some
persons were killed and wounded. At St. Gervais' some plaster fell
while everybody was in church and killed a girl on the spot.
Another had her arm broken, another her leg wounded, and the
chaplain of my chapel was knocked down and his whole body
bruised. Everything was done for him that could be done at the
moment, and since then he has been in bed with a fever. This has
not been without great torment and fear.
I am sending you only unpleasant [? ancuyeuse] news, but I will
not forget to tell you the good ; which is that last Friday, while the
preaching was going on, God delivered my niece Damonos (?) who
had been very ill for three weeks and kept her bed. I was much
afraid that childbirth would shorten her life : however God never
leaves those who hope in Him, and when He knows that human
means have all failed, he puts forth His power. He has given her
a son who is doing well, and the mother better than she has done.—
From 'your' house at Paris, 28 March 1581.
I praise the Creator for the constancy which He gives His people,
at the time when they have most need of it, and also for the
inspiration which He gives to those of whom He is pleased to
make use to minister to His people that which they need. Please
distribute to them six crowns, which I hope to repay to you on your
return, or to any one you may direct on your account. You will
excuse [? euxsequerez] me, please, if I treat you too familiarly. Your
humble neighbour and friend.
Add : 'Monsieur Monsieur du Bextz.' Some Latin words scribbled
on the back in a hand like that of L. Cave. Fr. 1¾ pp. [France V. 43.]
103. DIOGO BOTELHO to WALSINGHAM.
I have written by Custodio Leitao to the king my master how
you promised that when you came to London you would give orders
for the six culverins for the Isles which I begged of the Queen ;
and relying on your word I have chartered a ship to take them,
with other things needed for the defence of the Island wherein
stands the recovery of Portugal, of which you are the protector.
I would entreat you to order the delivery of the six culverins, each of
600 quintas, with their ammunition, I giving sufficient security for
the return of a like number of the same weight to her Majesty's
arsenal within six months, or payment of their value. I assure
you that if I could have bought them elsewhere I would not have
troubled you ; and that I should esteem more highly that her
Majesty should do me this favour, than a jewel worth many
Add. Endd. with date. Portuguese 1 p. [Portugal I. 46.]
104. [COBHAM] to [the SECRETARIES].
"The points sent to be resolved by me, which I received from
1. Who are at present the king's principal councillors and
attend at Court?
None of the nobility were at the Court, for upon occasion of the
king's sickness they had all retired. Also the house and place is
very little. So that I understood no councillors to be present at
my last repair to their Majesties but M. de Lansac, and Secretaries
Pinart and Brulart.
2. Whose advice he uses in the intended association ?
It seems that all the councillors and marshals of France are
made privy to the king's dislike of the Spanish invasion and
usurping of Portugal. For all causes and affairs of state he uses
the advice of the Queen, his mother. In this action she seems to
be earnest. His councillors for the most part have thought it
convenient for him to procure the entire friendship of the Queen,
whereby he may the easilier proceed to the effecting of his pacification
within this realm, and the more assuredly undertake any
3. How the same parties are noted to be affected to the same?
The councillors and marshals profess to like it well, both in their
private speeches and otherwise, and that at this instant they desire
a breach with Spain.
4. How it is thought the king's minions will like it ; who will
and who will not?
They apply themselves to the king's will, though it is understood
that more particularly d'O and Villequier are inclined to it. With
them the king confers most privately above others in his cabinet
in the affairs of importance which are most to his liking ; Villequier
serving for his secret councillor, being his old favourite and of
most experience, while d'O is used as a secretary in the affairs
which are first advised on in the cabinet ; so that the chief causes
pass his knowledge before they are made ripe for the secretaries
of state : and then for the dispatch he uses most willingly Secretary
Villeroy. As for the rest of the minions, they like such of the
king's enterprises as may bring honour and profit.
5. How they are affected to Monsieur?
I do not perceive there is any of them in such sort particularly
affected to him, as 'asspecting' any favour from thence. But they
look, with the change of their king, to lose their place and fortune.
6. Which of the king's Council are at Monsieur's devotion?
None of them, so far as I can learn, have declared themselves in
any point partisans to him, or to favour his dealings otherwise than
as the king or queen commands. Those depending chiefly on the
queen respect him more.
7. How matters stand between him and the Duke of Guise ;
where the Duke now is, and whether he has as much credit as before
with the king and Queen Mother?
There is no appearance of any friendship between Monsieur and
the duke. In times past there have fallen out occasions of unkindness.
The duke has of late been little at the Court since the king's
being at Dolinville ; having continued at Dampierre, his house 5
leagues from Dolinville. It seems in outward appearance that his
credit is not so great as before, for he commands nothing extraordinarily,
nor is he admitted to any private access to their
Majesties. The king has not for a long time bestowed any benefit
for the payment of his debts. But he remains well esteemed by
the captains and courtiers.
8. Who are 'inward' with Queen Mother?
For her most special courses of state, the Count of Retz, Cardinal
Birago, and for secretary of state, M. Pinart. To serve her in any
matter of treaty, M. Bellièvre, la Mothe-Fènelon, St. Sulpice and
M. de Rossi are councillors and persuaders of others, for the furtherance
of her designs.
9. Whether the Abate Guadagni and Fregoso attend on her?
The Abate remains much about her, being often sent by her on
messages which she would have dissembled ; supposed to be her
confident minister. Galeazzo Fregoso was sent to the 'Bastyllion'
about the 10th inst. The occasion of it is spoken of diversely.
Some are informed that at his last being with Monsieur he persuaded
him not to suffer the King of Navarre to disarm nor to leave the
towns demanded by the king, for that it might prove his own overthrow ;
using some further speeches, which inferred he had cause
to distrust the king. The queen at Fregoso's return conferred long
with him, but afterwards on the same day he was apprehended.
They say this was discovered by the Abate to the Queen Mother.
I have been otherwise informed that Fregoso entered into conference
with his Highness, seeking to discover his intentions, offering
him a means to deliver M. de la Noue. But his manner of dealing
was such as his Highness misliked. He referred him to one of his
confident ministers ; but warned the latter not to 'enlarge his mind'
and to hear Fregoso fully. In the meantime he was sent to prison.
They give me to understand he is discovered to be a pensioner of
King Philip, by certain letters and papers intercepted.
10. Whether Queen Mother carries the sway she did?
It appears that the most important affairs are altogether communicated
to her, and often first 'opened to her by means.'
Because she otherwise strives to have her will. The dispatches of
M. d'O, which are made in the king's cabinet in her absence, are
imparted to her, so much as concern the state and foreign causes.
She shows herself 'apassionated' in favour of Don Antonio. There
is no one employed therein, but is favoured and well liked of her.
The king's minions have through his favour procured themselves
rich marriage. Lavalette will be married to the daughter and
heir of the Marquis de Muy of Picardy. The king during his
'diet' sent for him and his wife and daughter to Dolinville, where
the match was concluded. D'O takes to wife the daughter and heir
of Villequier, which the king has framed ; whereon there is
'intrisicall' friendship between them. D'Arques is born to a rich
patrimony, nevertheless the king has procured for him the daughter
of M. le Grand, Count of Cherny. So they are well placed in
good 'parentage' and alliance, besides the gifts the king bestows
If these points seem not to be sufficiently answered as may be
agreeable to her Majesty and your honour's, upon the knowledge of
the want, I shall seek to discharge it to her and your better
Endd. : The answer concerning certain points sent to be resolved
by me. 6 pp. [France V. 55.]
105. ADVERTISEMENTS from (?) FLANDERS.
We hear that the king prepares 200 ships to make a new journey,
and for this cause all the ships are stayed here and in Holland ; notwithstanding
it is said abroad that they are stayed that the country
may not be destitute of ships till those that are in Spain and
Portugal are come home. The prince lies still at Delft and from
thence gives order for all these things, and also the coming of
Monsieur into the States ; and it is thought to be very shortly, notwithstanding
the arrival of the Duchess of Parma in Paris in order
to stay this enterprise, the acceptation and protection of the States.
Some say it is to treat for a marriage with one of the King of Spain's
and to 'offer him to his marriage this same States' ; which
seems to be a very new thing. Perhaps you will know something
of these matters there.
By letters from Rome of Jan. 28 we understand that Don Antonio
was not to be found, and that 20,000 ducates were offered to 'whom'
would deliver him either dead or alive. Also that the Duke and
Duchess of Braganza went to the King of Spain's Court, and his
lands were restored to him, and divers towns belonging to gentlemen
of Portugal ; and he had also got in his estate the jurisdiction
of civil and criminal causes for himself and his successors ; and for
the pretence of the duchess to the succession of the realm he agreed
with the king 'granting him' his dukedom for his second child, and
in recompense of his damages in Villa Viciosa and other towns of
his the king gave him a good piece of money. It is also written
that after these restitutions the king has got their hearts in such
wise that they repented that they did not at first call him to be
The parliament was to have begun the last of February, and it
was thought it would be kept at Lisbon, because the plague was
somewhat busy at Elvas. His Majesty 'increased' his title : "King
of Portugal and Algarves and of the Indies oriental and occidental."
The Portugals much honoured Cardinal Alberto of Austria and
desired to have him as their viceroy.
The Duke of Alva asked leave to return home, which was
granted him ; but we hear there was a fleet almost ready to go to
Don Peter de Medicis gathered new soldiers beside those he had
before ; there is no certainty whether for the enterprise of this
country or some other, because the horse and foot have retired from
By a ship arrived in Venice from 'Sorya' we hear that in 'Alepey'
there was plague, and a great earthquake which pulled down many
fair edifices ; and all the people were greatly amazed. This is
written in a letter of Feb. 3. We hear also of the prosperous success
of the Persian and how he overcame the great Turk in a battle.
This news one of the Governors brought to Venice, fearing some
novelties come to the Lords of Venice, for the 'redressing' of
certain forts which they had in that country ; but 'for a good
respect' they would alter nothing.
By letters from Lisbon of 23 Feb.—There were five ships in
readiness to go to 'Calico.' The King of Spain had determined to
send for viceroy the Grand Prior, son to the Duke of 'Alvey' ;
but the noblemen of Portugal would not give their consent to it,
and so another gentleman was appointed to go.
All the ordnance was taken away from the forts, and with the
news that Don Antonio was in France it was all set up again, and
the forts newly provided with victuals and men.
In the same hand as Nos. 499, 503 in last volume. Endd. : Portugal
Advertisements. 2¼ pp. [Portugal I. 47.]
106. Summary of NEGOTIATIONS with FRANCE.
19 Nov. To her Majesty
from Sir H. Cobham.
Certain Ambassadors for the purpose
forborne to be sent, for better secrecy of the
The matter to be dealt in at the beginning covertly
Promise of assistance to be sent from hence to the
French king, in case it be made probable that any good be likely to
Instructions d, e.
The assistance to be given in money, 30,000
crowns at the beginning.
Overtures of further attempts to be referred to
answer from hence.
Means to impeach the greatness of Spain to be
delivered from them and to be considered here.
What princes may be drawn into this association.
Scotland and the Low Countries to be comprehended in it.
9 November. To her
Majesty from Sir
H. C. i.
The matter of consultation by way of
commissioners deferred until the king
returned to Blois from Moulins.
These commissioners were like to be
appointed, Pinart and Belliēvre.
12 Dec. From Sir
H. C. k.
Commissioners appointed, Chiverny, Villequier,
and Pinart, and met in the King's
garden 12 Dec.
These commissioners took occasion by the late invasion
in Ireland to have Sir H. C. to move the question of a war
offensive and defensive, and they would answer. And this proposition
so to be made should contain a deliberation of this point,
whether succours to be sent to Ireland, or forces to some other part
of the Spanish kingdoms, to divert the begun invasion.
Resolved by them that the assistance of Portugal were not
in vaine, but other attempt best to be taken in hand, either 'by'
Italy or the Low Countries.
Strozzi moves a proposition to Sir H. C. touching some
enterprise to be done upon Portugal, so that her Majesty would
license him to be favoured or received upon need in any of her
ports or out-islands.
In hand of L. Tomson, and endd. by him : Extract of the negotiations
of France. 1 p. [France V. 132.]