620. PEDRO DE ZUBIAUR to WALSINGHAM.
The favour you have shown me is great, and you can ascertain,
in the fourteen years that I have been trading into this country,
I have never done wrong to any man, nor intended it ; but to
render to every one his own. My ruin and that of my friends has
been caused by a bad man who went from here and has taken at
Tercera a ship of mine coming from the Indies with more than
80,000 crowns (?) and another ship of 800 tons, which the king
took from me (?) at Magallanes. And so I say that if you find that
I have had the value of 50 pounds, you may have me chastised.
All these gentlemen have suffered loss, and cannot help being in
default. If you do not remedy it, trade will go on falling off, and
if this business of Drake comes to an end in my hands, before they
take away my powers, I will pay them all out of what comes to me.
Her Majesty commands it to be done with the consent of the
ambassador, who has a good expectation of finishing it, and I have
told him how much its owners want. Now it is wholly in your
hands to put us all right and to finish this business, wherewith all
will be animated to give satisfaction on one side and on the other.
Mr 'Vlifort' (qy. Wilford) will communicate with you more at large.
—London, 21 March 1582.
Add. Endd. Sp. 1 p. [Spain I. 87.]
621. HERLE to LEICESTER.
In the general letter I wrote to your lordship yesterday, I thought
good to omit what follows, as matter of more importance and
secresy, to be 'couched' apart.
It is thought by Gaspar the surgeon, who has charge among
others of the Prince's wound, that he cannot escape ; for the artery
is touched, and accidents increase that make the cure out of hope,
though better speech be blown abroad. I therefore send this
bearer, my servant John Morgan, on purpose to signify this to her
Majesty by your means ; and will not fail from instant to instant
(having the 'insinuations' that I have) to advertise what alteration
either his person, or the matters of State, suffer here.
If her Majesty, or any of her Council privately, write to 'condole
this action' with the Prince, it must be done at once ; and if I be
thought fit, I will discharge the office of delivering those letters,
and the further service that is commanded.
There is an advertisement given by a Councillor of importance
here, that there is somewhat practised against her Majesty's person
in England by Bernardino de Mendoza. If there are particulars, I
shall with the care and duty that becomes me advertise by special
messenger what is certain.
And seeing that the King of Spain has taken the course of
dealing by such foul means, there is sufficient probability that he
esteems neither his honour nor conscience, but is driven forward
to infamy, and to become the Pope's instrument and 'bowcher'
in whatsoever either ambition or revenge may stir him to ;
which requires an eye to be had everywhere for her Majesty,
and therein to the Pope's seminaries, and to the disguised
Jesuits, particularly in England, persons resolute to do
actual mischief, beside the course of their secret and ordinary
practices. For a taste of King Philip's disposition and inward
project you may read and judge of this paper enclosed, wherein
he alone practised so foully the murder of the Prince of Orange, by
promises that he never meant to perform ; whose scholar, the Prince
of Parma, is worthy of his ancestors ('own grandfather' erased).
Anastri, before he departed hence, obtained a large passport from
the Prince of Orange with favourable terms, to go about his
business whither he would ; whereby he had horses and guide from
Dunkirk to Gravelines, where it is said he is.
Monsieur and the States-General, before the Prince was hurt,
granted to Guelderland an exemption from the 'Religions frede,'
which imports much for a precedent.
On Sunday a sermon was made by the Prince of Épinoy's
preacher in St. Michael's church, exhorting them to abjure the
King of Spain, who had violated his oath and faith, and broken all
their privileges and freedoms, not worthy to govern, being in tyranny
and ambition the 'rejectedst' (?) prince of the world ; which he, a
papist, signified to them by the virtue and power of the word of
Verdugo grows strong in Guelderland. Aquisgrana is freed by
the interposition of the 'Princes protestants.' The Imperial Diet
begins at Augsburg on the 22nd of next month. The Emperor's
harbingers are come there to order 'things of' lodging and
provision. A marriage will be there between a daughter of
Brandenburg and a Duke of Brunswick. The Pope sends the
Bishop of 'Bressa' to the Diet as nuncio, and no legate as he had
Please have regard to Paul Buys' motion, expressed in my
former letter, and give me some answer therto. If the Prince die
of this hurt, Buys is a person to be the more cherished for many
Count John of Nassan, the Prince's brother, is sent for hither to
'assist' these affairs. And there is some bitter invective and
declaration of treasons inspired by Spain coming out in writing,
upon this attempt against the Prince by King Philip. It is judged
that it will be of more force and vehemence than the Apology was ;
and to do him great hurt and gall.
Toulon, a maritime town in Provence, was like to have been
surprised by the King of Spain's means of late.
The Prince of Orange affirmed that if the enemy were able, and
determined indeed to besiege any town, he feared rather Brussels
than either Dunkirk or Meenen.—Antwerp, 21 March 1581.
P.S.—M. de Guise is still a great party in the Spanish causes,
and has his instruments here.
Appended : The confession of Anthony, a Spaniard, cashier to
This examinate says that the practice to murder the Prince of
Orange began eight months ago between King Philip and a secretary
of his named Peter Assonzo, born in Biscay, who brought his
father, John Assonzo, by letters to Lisbon, to confer of it with the
king. This conference proceeded so far that John de Assonzo
undertook to provide an instrument to execute the king's will, upon
the conditions proposed : that the party should have 80,000 crowns
in ready money, a comenda, an office, and have titles of honour.
Gaspar Aniastri was dealt with herein by Assonzo the father, and
brought to accept the execution in his own person ; but finding his
courage, when he had better examined the matter, weak, signified
that he was unable, but would find a person to supply his place, so
that the former conditions were observed ; which the king ratified,
willing that he should compound with his party at what price he
might best, for, so the act were done, he would bestow upon Aniastri
the mediator of it, the whole of his promise, to dispose of at his
Aniastri 'brake' herein with this examinate, Antonio his cashier,
to take upon him the enterprise ; who, very willing, but unable,
advised that John or Juan Jaureguy, Aniastri's book-keeper and
a Biscayan born, should be persuaded in the cause, and he doubted
not of his courage and resolution to perform what was required.
This motion was found good and succeeded as is now apparent.
John was promised great sums of money by Aniastri, and favours
at the king's hands, and induced further to believe that they would
not execute him 'upon' the fact, though he were apprehended,
but reserve him prisoner for a time to learn more. Therefore
Aniastri would depart in port four or five days before the enterprising
of it, to acquaint the Prince of Parma in the king's name
with the matter, that he might be ready with his army to approach
the city of Antwerp, and in his company de la Noue ; whom he
should offer by a trumpeter to deliver in lieu of Juan, for so was
the king's pleasure. If they refused this, both la Noue should die
and likewise the Prince of Orange's son who is in Spain, with all
other prisoners that the Prince of Parma has in his custody. In
confidence whereof Juan proceeded as resolutely as he did, and
had such issue and reward as was seen last Sunday.
The King of Spain is offended irreconcilably with two things
concerning the Prince : the Apology, and the calling in of
Copy. ? Enclosure in No. 623. Endd. by Herle. 3 pp. [Holl.
and Fl. XV. 73.]
622. Another copy of the above confession with one or two
corrections in Herle's writing. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. XV. 73 a.]
623. HERLE to BURGHLEY.
I have written sundry letters to you since my arrival on this
side, and will continue the same effectually, praying the assistance
of your favour, and that I may hear my letters have come safely to
your hands. At present I send this bearer my servant to my Lord
of Leicester, with advertisements of importance. I enclose herein
a copy of everything I am writing to my Lord of Leicester,
verbatim, admitting no one syllable, assuring myself that my
duty and care borne to her Majesty's service will 'like' you, and
that accordingly you will be pleased to advance my poor credit
and employment therein, for I am your creature, and so you shall
ever perceive me. And my poor estate desires some regard to
be had of me, when I strive by my own proper means to be doing
somewhat that may exempt me from idleness and express my
loyalty to my sovereign and the Lords. All which I commend to
your wisdom, and to the natural affection that you bear to your
house of 'Tylleglace' of which I am a poor branch. Please give
your countenance in dispatching this bearer, my man, as soon as
it is possible, for it is necessary to entertain now a continual
intelligence from hence, which I would specially desire to be
employed in, if I had her Majesty's countenance with an allowance
thereunto, though it were never so small, for I have no help but
Please further to remember what I wrote to you of the Scottish
matters, and to signify your mind therein ; for it is a thing only
imparted 'with' your self, and as yet the Scottish colonel
is here. Then touching Paul Buys, both for the cause that
concerns Denmark, and for the provinces of Holland, Zealand, and
other sea ports.
Lastly, I would beseech you that if my man, this bearer, attend
on you for my business, you will give him favourable access to you,
and vouchsafe further to incline 'Mr S.' Walsingham's fast friendship
to me, who is angry rather with my necessity than with my
person, in that Wade is not satisfied at my hands. But I strive to
do it, and will procure to my power his satisfaction.—Antwerp,
21 March 1581.
Add. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XV. 74.]
624. The PRINCE OF PARMA to the PEOPLE of BRUSSELS.
Wishing you to know as well as do those of these parts the zeal
and affection with which I have ever proceeded and taken care for
the good and tranquillity of these countries generally, of which I
desire no fuller testimony than the pains which I have taken, the
offices I have rendered, and the perils and risks to which I have
exposed myself in trying to restore the whole to the ancient splendour
and happiness in which these provinces once flourished, in pursuance
whereof God, having been pleased to open the way to you by the
death of the Prince of Orange, the sole and only instrument and
author of all the miseries and calamities that you have suffered,
will, I hope, have in like manner have removed from your eyes the
bandage which hindered you from discerning the tricks and inventions
whereby he fostered mistrust in you and perpetuated your
miseries for the sake of his own covetousness and private ambition,
to the point of desiring for his own ends to bring you under the
yoke of those from whom you have in past ages received so much
hurt and hostility : I have thought good to write this word in order
to assure you that in the event of your wishing to avail yourselves
of the opportunity which God offers, you will find no one in the
world to aid you with more sincerity and promptitude than I shall
do. To this end I offer you all that I am able in virtue of the
special powers which I hold from his Majesty, from whom I am
certain that you will receive no less favour and no worse treatment
than those who, relying on the natural kindness with which he is
endowed, have voluntarily thrown themselves into the arms of his
Whereupon I await your answer, which I pray God may be such
as I desire for the sake of your welfare and repose, and soon enough
to give his Majesty cause to desist from the preparations he is
making to arrive at this end by other ways perhaps more violent
and less agreeable (duysables) to yourselves.—Tournay, 21 March
1582. (Signed) Alexander (and below) Garnier.
Copy. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XV. 75.]
625. JOHN NORRIS to WALSINGHAM.
The bearer of this, a doctor in the Civil Laws, having composed
a small treatise in his profession, which he dedicates to her Majesty,
has prayed me to write to you, that by your means he may be
permitted to present his work. And although I have no knowledge
of the man, other than by the report of others, to be learned in his
faculty [sic], and am besides altogether unable to judge of the matter
of his book, yet for the earnest request he has made me, I would
do no less than write these few lines on his behalf.—Antwerp,
22nd March 1582.
Add. Endd. : '28 March.' ¼ p. [Ibid. XV. 76.]
626. [WALSINGHAM] to GILPIN.
By yours of the 11th and 17th inst. it appears that certain
particular provinces have offered their contingents for the interests
past, which you forbore to receive by reason of former direction.
Whereon, as I cannot but like of your dealing, I have now thought
good to let you understand that as the payment made by one part
will more easily draw on the rest to perform their duties, it is
thought good that you should get into your hands as much as you
may ; and for the rest, be instant with the States, that for the
remnant that shall be 'unanswered' order may speedily be taken.
And to the end the Queen may not hereafter be driven to these
extremities of delay, and tedious 'poursuites,' that order may also
be taken at this assembly for assurance to be made to the city of
Antwerp for the satisfaction of those at whose hands she will look
to receive yearly such interest as shall fall due during the 'prolongation'
of the principal ; which she can be pleased not to call for
very hastily, 'tendering' their present necessity, if she be duly
and timely 'answered' the interest. As for the receipt of the
money to be taken or made by yourself, your desire should have
been satisfied, if the Company had not resolved upon sending you
to the Diet of the Empire, for which journey you may put yourself
in readiness. For the letters you are to have from her Majesty,
one upon the point to be dispatched will be with you, if not as soon
as this, immediately after. Meanwhile remember to leave order
with Copcott for the following of her Majesty's business according
to present directions delivered you.—The Court at Greenwich
24 March 1581.
Draft in hand of L. Tomson, with add. 1¼ pp. [Holl. and
Fl. XV. 77.]
627. HERLE to LEICESTER.
On Thursday last I dispatched a man of mine to you with letters
of the 20th and 21st of this month, in which I advertised at large
the state of things here. Since then the Prince's wound shows
good appearance of amendment ; but till the seventh day is past,
which determines about 1 o'clock this Sunday, and the ninth day
also, no full assurance can be made, though his friends are of
opinion that the danger is past. The Prince is of that courage
that it makes the cure easier in him which would be impossible in
a weaker person. The state of his wound is this, that the blow of
the pistol has 'astonied' or contused the principal parts near it,
which before they are brought to their feeling, cannot be without
danger of accidents. At the blow, the Prince thought that the
whole house had fallen upon him, not aware that he was hurt till
the blood came trickling down. The paper that rammed in the
bullet was driven far into the wound, accompanied with great force
and quantity of powder, which spread itself the more, 'by how
much' the piece was overcharged. The powder burnt his ruffs
and tainted the tip of his ear, being discharged so near ; for there
never was seen such assurance as of the wretch that did the deed.
The powder has caused swelling and inflammation, which 'axeth
his dissolving' ; and even now the 'eskar' or scurf is separated,
and they begin to come to the depth of the wound, which is as big
as a dollar, at the place of the first entry. The danger will be
when they come to the searching of the 'eskar,' lest it be so deep
as to cover some of the veins that may be hurt by the blow, and then
the issue of the blood may be such as they are not able to stop. The
Prince continues still silent, but writes what is to be done. He signed
yesterday sixteen letters and some commissions. But the Council
of the States-General will proceed in nothing till they see his full
and perfect convalescence. They have prepared shows at Ghent
and Brussels for the receiving of Monsieur, which must also stay
'his' time. Monsieur visits the Prince, and on Friday sent 'Roche
de Brun' into France, with 'instructions' to the king of the state
of things here, and what the persons detained in prison for the
murder 'pretensed' have confessed. Their confessions you shall
have as soon as they may be 'recovered.' Monsieur takes this act
of the King of Spain to be done directly against his person, and
that it may serve for a good caveat to all other princes ; affirming
that they shall proceed here by criminal process against the King
of Spain, and then divulge the act to the Imperial Diet and to the
kings and princes of Christendom.
To cut off the practices as much as they may, and 'entertainments'
by letters, they have dismissed Taxis the postmaster and
transferred the office to d'Ohain who is [qy. was] principal in title
before, to whom the letters will be brought coming and going, that
he may 'visit' them according to his discretion.
It is intended that the King of Spain's arms shall be beaten
down, not only here but throughout the other provinces, and
Monsieur's erected in place of them ; with a further charge, that
none of the inhabitants shall retain within their houses any private
'monument' of the king's arms. The mass is but weekly [qy.
weakly] 'haunted' here, and the papists that refuse to abjure
King Philip make show that they will forsake the town ; but when
they 'peyse' whither to retire for safety or traffic, the matter is
By letters intercepted, that came from Gaspar 'Laniastri' at
Gravelines, it appears that he intends to be at Calais shortly ; 'to
meet wherewith' Monsieur has sent his provost with letters to
Gourdan, for his stay till he know the French king's pleasure
therein, at whose hands he looks to have him delivered to be brought
hither. It is looked for here that the cashier and the priest (who
is a Jacobin friar, confessor to John Jaureguy), will be executed
this week, or next at the furthest. And it is deciphered that the
Duke of Alva had a great part in this foul action, procuring John
Destassonza [sic] his creature to be the manager of it. Bernardino
de Mendoza is another creature of his also.
Monsieur gives hopes that the Switzers, the French lances and
shot 'a foot,' and the reiters, shall be ready in the field within ten
weeks to serve here ; and also that the French king his brother
shall declare himself against the King of Spain ; either of which
is shrewdly doubted of and has small appearance. Yet tonight the
Prince Dauphin certainly departed into France ; which has been
hastened, for the castle of 'Dulowe' [Dilloo] is taken by the enemy,
'and prepares' us tomorrow to have his camp before Ypres to
besiege it. There are neither able soldiers nor governor in it, nor
are they able from hence to give succour to it. It is a place of
The negotiation from hence with Montigny and the Malcontents
has but slow progress. They now have more insight by this late
precedent into the Spanish king's vindictive mind, and therefore
for their own security should be the better inclined to Monsieur, if
their envy of the Prince of Orange's estate and their own ambition
do not hinder.
As yet neither du Vray nor Neufville is arrived here.
There is an oration dispersed among the Malcontents to entertain
them the more in courage and duty to the King of Spain ; set forth
in French in the name of the Lord Chancellor of England, as a
speech of his, debated in Council, whether it were necessary for her
Majesty to give aid to this side or no ; a thing penned by M. 'Doway,'
projected by d'Assonleville, and authorised by the Prince of Parma,
printed and sold in Tournay, though 'named' to come from
Cologne. In this the king's forces, friends, and money, are so
magnified and the Queen of England so abased that it touches her
in honour, in my humble opinion, to 'take knowledge' of it as well
for the invention as for the gross and lying terms that it contains.
I am persuaded that Mr Secretary Walsingham has the book, otherwise
I would send you one only copy that I have.
Villiers is now brought in favour with Monsieur by the Prince's
means, and du Plessis' mediation.
This morning my good and familiar friend Guicciardin, the
writer of the description of this country, came to me. He had
immediately before been detained by the space of two days in the
Town House, and examined whether he held any communication
with one Bandino, a Florentine in Paris, a man of good account,
but ill-affected to this state by sundry offices that he had done
against it. Whereto Guicciardin answered that as one Florentine
to another, letters had passed between them, but in matters of
state, never anything. To this they made a second demand,
whether he had written to Bandino that by the practice of the Queen
of England, agreeing with the Prince of Orange and the States, all
three in one, Monsieur was brought over hither to mock and scorn
the French king, and plainly withal to break even his own neck,
and to ruin him. Whereto Guicciardin protested that he was
innocent of it, both in writing and in thought, commending her
Majesty to be the worthiest and admirablest princess in virtue and
integrity that ever was. And for the Prince of Orange and the
States, he had given sufficient testimony of his well-deserving
towards them. [This par. marked in the margin.]
Next day they repaired to him again, praying him by the mouth
of two burgomasters and four 'skepers' that he would not interpret
ill that he was thus interrogated and stayed ; it was to do their
country service, for some such 'purpose' and speeches as they
questioned him of had passed between some men, and had been
written also abroad. They prayed him to do the best offices he
could to the States-General, to the Prince, and to Monsieur (whom
they named last), they holding the same good opinion of her
Majesty that he did. This advertisement Guicciardin delivered to
me as a secret of importance, that concerned the Queen to consider
of ; for it seems that they joined the other two with the Queen, in
the article of his examination, to cover the jealousy that they have
conceived of her in this action, and also to clear the Prince of
Orange, who 'is judged that he wrought' by Sainte-Aldegonde in
England to bring over the duke, whatever countermine he should
be driven to use for it. Monsieur also takes it very hardly
that the entertainment of England waxes so cold towards him ;
for though he have received letters from her Majesty by 'Bruneas,'
and twice by the post since, he looked to have had special messages,
and tokens to have passed between her Majesty and him in some
other sort ; which now perplexes him that he is so 'small' accounted
of. Insomuch that one of the Prince's Council said to one of good
reputation, that albeit the Queen of England would shake off
Monsieur, and abandon her distressed friends when they looked
most for comfort and accomplishment, yet that it was no policy to
do it suddenly and all at once to him that she had entertained
so notably, and to the country that depended on her, and in whose
good success her assurance stood. This breeds daily more anguish
and offence in them, for their estate stands upon extreme terms,
how to be able to provide money to erect an army ; and drives
them to many hard constructions and devices.
Thereunto this advertisement may serve for some application :
that a negotiation is intended shortly to be had from hence with a
foreign prince. A person was named to be employed therein ; but
he was thought unfit, in that he was over-favourable to the Queen
of England and her causes. This party was advertised thereof,
and desired me to have one in readiness to send specially over to
her Majesty, when he will give me knowledge further of his negotiation.
Since that time it is appointed that Govyll (Colville) shall
go over with letters and credence secretly into Scotland, in the
company of Colonel Stewart, who '(of my life)' is wholly French,
as I can be able to prove when occasion serves. For Govyll, he is
grown to a sudden fashion of silence and sadness ; and in malice he
hates our nation as much as may be. Col. Stewart on this occasion
will have 'a pay' of a round sum of his old debts, and promises
therewith to bring over some supplies to fill up the old bands
here. Next week he travels into Holland to see his lady of Battenburg,
and thence comes to 'Camshire,' whence he and Govill will
take ship for Scotland. He told me that he looked for letters from
Mr Secretary by the next post ; and further that he heard the
Earl of Arran was come to the king at Edinburgh, well accompanied
and followed, d'Aubigny being then at Dalkeith, if whose quarrel
with Arran the king had undertaken the decision and reconcilement.
He asked me further whether any ambassador was lately sent into
Scotland, which I could not resolve him in.—Antwerp, 25 March
Copy. Endd. by Herle : The copy of my letter to the Earl of
Leicester, written on Sunday at Antwerp, the 25 of March 1582.
No. 2. 5 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XV. 78.]
628. GILPIN to WALSINGHAM.
This week, by Mr Borrowes or Mr Rawley I sent you a packet
with a 'collection' of what passed here about the mischance happened
to the Prince ; who, God be thanked, mends daily, 'the
wound being very fair, his speech good and able to receive his
sustenance' without harm or pain, so that within eight or ten days
at furthest it is to be hoped he will be able to stir abroad and
travail in business as heretofore.
The course the bullet took was so strange that all the doctors
and surgeons wonder at it, as a thing almost impossible, to make
such a hole and passage through that part of the face, without
hurting any chief part or member.
The cashier of 'Jan Astro' has confessed all, . . . was a-working
since August last, having been propounded to him ; but his heart
would not serve to commit the 'fact,' and yet concealed it.
One Juan de Zuncha was chief worker of it on the king's behalf
with 'Jan Astro,' who was promised, as I heard for certain, 80,000
crowns, with a comanderia of San Diego, and advancement to some
Since his departure, this 'Jan Astro' wrote two letters to his
servant that care should be had to execute the 'fact,' and pistol
double charged, and with two bullets ; to remember that the
Prince wore a gown, and therefore the pistol was surer than the
dagger, by which it might be done so effectually that it might
The black monk that confessed and absolved the murderer could
by no torments be brought to confess anything, till his own handwriting
was found and laid before him, containing a note of what
he had received for his labour. Then he said he had counselled
him to the contrary, and had not revealed because he had not
thought it had been so soon done ; but since, I hear again, he has
'opened' what he knew.
The duke has not failed to be every day at the Prince's dressing
in the afternoon, showing thereby the care he had of him, and
desire and gladness of his recovery.
Wednesday last was appointed and kept a day of fasting and
prayer to the end it would please God to restore the Prince's health
and send good success in 'these' troublesome time and business.
The duke is very forward and diligent in furthering all needful
causes, and insists hard for present resolution to 'draw' an
uniformity among the provinces in all nations and occasions offered
and falling out for their defence and resistance against the enemy.
The Prince's hurt has somewhat delayed matters, but 'trusted'
ere long will be otherwise.
Nothing is heard of the enemy's proceeding or doings since the
mischance happened ; only that 'where' he had laid siege to a
castle lying between Ypres and Lille, on the river, he has left it,
and now 'makes show' again to Meenen. Their forces increase
daily, and make great preparations, victuals and munition to
attempt some enterprise.
Those of Ghent have thrust out many that refused to renounce
the King of Spain and take oath to Monsieur. The like will I
think very shortly be put into execution here, for notwithstanding
the grant of popery, few repair to mass ; the cause of which is taken
to be the fear of the oath.—Antwerp, 25 March 1582.
Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Ibid. XV. 79.]
629. The PRINCE OF PARMA to the MAGISTRATES OF BRUGES.
Similar to that addressed to Brussels, No. 624.
Copy. Endd. Fr. 1½ pp. [Ibid. XV. 80.]
630. ROSSEL to WALSINGHAM.
In four packets I have set forth to you the state of things here,
the occasions and causes of the delay in affairs touching his Highness's
establishment by the due oath to the other provinces, which
up till now remains in suspense because the deputies from some of
those provinces were insufficiently authorised. This they now are,
and the oath-taking ought to be completed in three days, save for
the provinces of Utrecht and Overyssel, which have not appeared.
You and her Majesty have been duly advertised of a desperate
man, who with a resolution fearless of death was determined to
wish to kill his Excellency in his chamber. The result has been
more fully particularised to you by other agents, and I will say no
more of it, leaving you to think into what a predicament it has
brought us ; what delay in our affairs, what hopes to the enemy for
the advancement of his. God has saved us and all men from the
most cruel massacre ever heard of. These incidents are highly pernicious
to the good of this State, inasmuch as his Excellency's advice
is lacking to the Council of State, where many posts are given to
people of little experience, to the public detriment ; not by his
Highness's fault, but that of those who advance them unknown to
him. He has already perceived this ; whereon I have been asked
to give advice. For my own part, I do all possible service to
advance, first, the glory of God, secondly, the repose of the State,
to the point of exposing my own estate ; beside my ordinary
labours and troubles.
I am waiting to know if you have received all mine since the
return of the Earl of Leicester, to whom I have always imparted all
the occurrents ; begging you to pass on to him the contents of
this.—Antwerp, Mar. 25, 1582.
P.S.—The Malcontents have retaken by composition a castle
named 'Doux Lieu' [qy. Doulemont] on the Lys, three leagues
from Ypres. It is feared they will attack that town or another, if
fine weather favours them.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XV. 81.]
631. FREMYN to WALSINGHAM.
I wrote to you last week, whereby you will have seen the danger
in which his Excellency has been, and the hazard incurred by
foreigners. God be praised that the matter has passed as it has ;
it may well serve for the future as a warning to great and small and
for a great reproach to the King of Spain and to the great chief of
the Papacy. As for the Prince, he is, thank God, doing well of his
wound, with nothing broken or bruised in his mouth, only the
flesh pierced ; and the side where the bullet came out is beginning
to close up. By the end of this month he will be walking about
his room. If a soldier had been hit in the same way, he would be
walking about the town. You see how miraculously his Excellency
has escaped, by the grace of God, who has further work for him to
do. On the day of his wound, his Highness wept, and thrice smote
his head against the wall ; they had much ado to appease him.
This week will be executed the cashier and the Jacobin who were in
the conspiracy. As for the principal, merchant Gaspar 'Anyase,'
he has not been taken. He departed three days before the coup,
for Calais, and they say he is at Gravelines. He has taken money
from several merchants here, to be repaid at Lyons, up to 60,000
livres gross. He had large credit, and a passport from his
Excellency. The prisoners' depositions will be printed. The
priest has told everything ; confessed that he gave absolution to
the assassin, etc.
The enemy has taken the castle of Doulieu, and his forces are at
'Balieu' [qy. Bailleul] and Poperinghe. It is said they are going
to Meenen ; others say to Dunkirk, into which the French have
entered ; but Brussels is to be feared. If they go there, some
French will be sent to Vilvoorde and a good number to Haudant (?),
pending the preparation of his Highness's army, which goes
forward pretty slowly.
The States have not yet replied to the proposals of his Highness,
which he reiterated to them last Wednesday. They promised him
to do their diligence therein.
His Excellency's wound as well as this delay in answering has
hindered the departure of the Prince Dauphin as well as of other
gentlemen to set their affairs in order ; and it seems to me that it
will be June before we see his Highness's army in the field, if other
diligence is not shown. These delays will be very mischievous. It
was proposed at one time that the Prince of Condé should be his
Highness's lieutenant-general in that army ; but this has been
broken off, because he is not much beloved, and if he collected
forces in France it would cause suspicion among those of Guise
and other Catholics, which might be the occasion of the revival of
troubles in France. The most expedient course for the furtherance
of his Highness's affairs here was to give the post to the Prince
Dauphin, on many accounts. His Highness has sent to the Prince
of Condé to satisfy him.
The Marquis of Elbeuf has sent to his Highness offering his
services and his means. He declines with thanks ; and it seems
that he is content to have once made trial of him, without going
that way again. His Highness has been making presents : to M.
de la Ferté, an abbey near Meaux worth 10,000 livres a year ; to
M. de Fervacques, 16,000 florins ; to M. 'Maydavit' a priory of
12,000 livres ; and several other small gifts to his courtiers to put
heart into them to do their work at this juncture. He and the
States sent yesterday to those of Overyssel, to know what they
have decided to do ; inasmuch as they have neither come nor sent
word since his arrival.
His Highness's household establishment is not yet settled.
Things go slowly.
Guicciardin the Italian is imprisoned in the Town House for
having received and written certain letters in the enemy's direction,
which were intercepted.—Antwerp, 25 Mar. 1582.
Add. Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XV. 82.]
632. The MAGISTRATES OF YPRES to the PRINCE OF PARMA.
We have just received the letter which your Highness has been
pleased to send us, which has been read and well understood by
those to whom it was written. They are surprised, considering the
importance of the matter, that it was not escorted by some more
distinguished personage than a simple trumpeter. If we had
thought [sic] that your Highness was fully informed of the enterprise
on the part of the French upon the town of Lens, and its
result, we would not have omitted to impart it to you.
Wherewith we pray God to grant your Highness an elevation
(lever) appropriate to your deserts.—Ypres, 26 March 1582.
Copy in Rossel's hand, encl. in his of Mar. 31, No. 638. Endd.
Fr. ½ p. [Holl. and Fl. XV. 83.]
633. COMBELLE to WALSINGHAM.
Inasmuch as I learn from my brother, on his return from
England, that her Majesty was ill-content with me, for some report
that had been made to her that I had not seen and saluted 'le
Syr' Henry Seymour when he came to meet Monsieur on his return
from Cambrésis, I thought it my duty to write to her. I do so by
this dispatch, and humbly beg her to believe that there was on this
point no diminution of my good will to her service. Herein I shall
never fail, under the obligation of all the honour and favour I have
received from her. If there was any default on my side, it was
rather owing to the hindrances, inconveniences and confusions
which are found in an army, and because I was not a good enough
courtier, than to any other cause. And because I know the position
you hold about her Majesty, and that you willingly undertake the
protection of honest folk, well-disposed to her service, I thought
good to beg you to present my letter to her, and make her approve
what I have written by way of quite truthful excuses. Assure her,
if you please, that she has hardly more power over her own men
and natural subjects than her rare virtues have gained for her over
me, of which she may have proof if she ever so honours me.
My brother also says that he received so much help from you in
the recovery of a chain and jewels which were taken from him over
there, that he, and I with him, have great cause to thank you.—
Paris, 27 March 1582.
P.S.—Please let the Lord Treasurer and the Earl of Sussex know
that I recommend myself humbly to their favour.
Add. Endd. : From President Combelle. Fr. 1 p. [France VII.
634. COBHAM to WALSINGHAM.
Advertisements came yesterday to this Court that the Prince
of Orange had been shot at with a pistol, and hurt in his face,
not altogether without peril of his life, and the present loss of
some of his teeth. It is said this was done in his chamber, and the
malefactor 'presently in the place' slain by the prince's bastard
and others. About him was found a bill of credit for 3,000 crowns,
and also he had in sundry places on his body Jesuitical 'characters'
written in Spanish, with a prayer in his bosom. It is conceived
this desperate person is known to be a cashier to a Spanish merchant,
and a Biscayan born ; and moved through the corruption of the
Spanish king and Pope, at the instigation of the Jesuits, has sought
to commit that wilful murder on a prince of the Religion, which is
a most horrible 'fact' and unworthy of any man professing Christ.
Howbeit, in these bad days malice oppresses religion. This unhappy
warning may serve to all other princes to be more provident for
their preservation. The papists are much cheered with this news,
hoping that it is true ; expecting the prince's death, and the sequel
of other like detestable 'facts.'
I am informed that Dr Allen, with divers others of our wandering
Englishmen, 'are' repaired hither from Rheims, following the
publishing of the Pope's bull, to obtain benevolence and the
liberality of all men towards the maintenance of their seminary.
So all their preaching friars this Lent exhort the principal personages
and the people to bestow alms on the English Romanists.
They have made a book intituled De Persecutione Anglicana
Epistola etc. which I send you herewith. It is set forth, as you may
perceive, with the privilege of this king, and thought to have been
written by Dr Allen.
I am informed that Thomas Morris, a minister beside Hastings
in Kent, is a receiver and conveyer of papists and their books. He
has at his devotion two searchers thereabouts, who are both
indebted to him. It may be this Morris can inform you of the
printer's name of the books they have lately printed in London
and distributed to divers gentlemen, of Campion's death, in verses ;
or at least how they were 'delivered forth.'
Our papists whisper that they expect some innovation to happen
in Wales before the end of May. However, I have found by
experience that they often give out frivolous hopes.
They tell me that Sir Thomas Jarret has a son in the Jesuits'
college here. His father's man brought him some 'relief' the
There are now come over these following : James Findlason,
John Fitzsymons, Tichborne, Pooley, one Smith of London, and
one Digby, a priest, sometime of Justice [sic] College in Oxford,
who departed hence at Shrovetide.
Mr Paget begins to show himself abroad again among our
I beg you again to let me know how 'these kind' of advertisements
which I have sent from time to time concerning the papists
fall out, by proof in any sort, to be veritable or in any way profitable
for her Majesty's service ; because otherwise I should be loth
to trouble you with such frivolous matter. Also to remember
M. Torsey's suit, which I sent you six or seven months ago.
I think it necessary to let you know that upon occasion of visiting
the Duke of Savoy's ambassador lately, he entered into speech of
his duke sending Count Montreal to her Majesty with the Order of
the Garter, and such other compliments as princes use to do on
first coming to their estates. He rehearsed likewise that his prince
did the like offices to all other potentates, in requital of which they
also sent their ministers, to 'congratulate' his beginning of
government. This purpose he protested to have uttered to me of
himself without any commission from his master. I leave the
'informing' of this to her Majesty as you shall think convenient ;
but if it pleased her to cause the duke to be visited, and the King
of Navarre being in the way approached nearer to these parts, it
might prepare those two princes' minds to be better inclined
towards her, and may cause her subjects to be better 'seen' and
used in some parts, now that they are so ill intreated in Italy. This
visit may be 'used' without giving any cause of jealousy to the
French king. And so Duke Montmorency may be saluted from
her Majesty, or from the Earl of Leicester, as may be thought
Whereas in my letter of the 12th inst. I told you of the Pope's
nuncio's dealing with the Franciscan friars, he has since bestowed
whipping discipline on three or four of the chief, done in his
presence, with some help of his own hands, for standing against his
will on the privileges of the Gallican Church, opposing themselves
to his injurious intruding authority. The Court of Parliament,
being advertised of the nuncio's punishing those friars, have assigned
certain persons to take information of the matter, in order that a
process may be framed thereon. But Cardinal Birague and the
Duke of Guise seek by all means to persuade the king to have this
'fact' passed away in silence, and have advised the nuncio to write
some humble letters to the king ; which he waits to perform till he
hears from Rome.
I am informed that 'Bishop Glasgow' has signified to the nuncio
that the captain of the Scottish king's guard has put himself 'on'
the party of Morton's friends, at her Majesty's instigation.
This king has granted to the Bishop of Paris that the bull in
favour of the English papists, which I lately sent you, shall be
published, and that there may be given them 500 crowns. To
which the Cardinals of Birague and Guise are great contributors,
to the value, as I hear, of 200 crowns.
The Pope intends to make at Bologna in Lombardy [sic] a college
for the English papists ; having assigned to them an abbey of
2,000 crowns a year, lately fallen void.
The nuncio is advertised from Rome that the Queen has
'accorded' to renew the ancient association and league with the
King of Spain, remitting on both parts the injuries past ; which
negotiation 'should be' carried by the Spanish ambassador in
The Abbot del Bene has visited the nuncio on behalf of Monsieur,
and given him to understand that his Highness had obtained the
church of St. James at Antwerp for the exercise of the Catholic
ceremonies, which would be done daily as soon as priests might be
had for the purpose.
Yesterday came a courier from the Prince of Parma, who departed
'expressedly' towards Spain to carry the news of the Prince of
The companies which have 'been said to be' gathered in Italy
are not yet amassed, for want of money ; howbeit, it is understood
the Spanish king has made provision for a million and a half by
means of the 'Fouquers.'
The Duke of Mantua has entered into great 'jealousy,' fearing lest
the Duke of Savoy has some secret intelligence with the county of
Montferrat, and has imprisoned divers in that country on suspicion.
He has been advertised that the Duke of Savoy has given great
provision to Captain Anselme, to 'entertain' sundry captains and
divers companies of soldiers.
In this Court they are offended that the Pope has sent
Chiappino Vitelli's bastard son to be governor in Avignon, because
he is known to be a pensioner to the Catholic King. This king has
earnestly requested the Pope to remove him.
A French gentleman of my acquaintance, dwelling near Étampes,
sent me word today that an English gentleman had passed by with
five or six horses towards the upper parts of France ; which I cannot
tell how to believe, because I am not otherwise advertised of it.
—Paris, 28 Mar. 1582.
Add. and endt. gone. 4 pp. [France VII. 43.]
635. COBHAM to WALSINGHAM.
I cannot tell whether her Majesty 'can be pleased this king may
be in any sort dealt with' about the manner of her subjects'
proceeding in seeking to publish their bulls and false books ;
delivering out pamphlets of cruel executions with much like
'comtemptius' speeches, wherewith truly I am within myself much
vexed, and ready to obey what I am commanded therein. Meantime,
if by way of 'conference' I show some of these books with
the king's privilege to Pinart, I hope it will not be evil taken.
There is much privy seeking to win all sorts of gentlemen
repairing into these parts.
I cannot tell what to think of Lord Hamilton's absence. Lady
'Fanhurst' [Fernhurst] is upon her return ; but it is said that
d'Aubigny's wife is not 'of opinion' to pass into Scotland.
I beseech you to 'do for me to her Majesty's liking' and to
command me.—Paris, 28 March 1582.
P.S.—The heirs to Marshal de Cossé will needs have me depart
out of their house ; yet I have offered them 1,200 francs a year
'by' rent of it ; so her Majesty's courtesies to the French will not
move them to do the like. I will now therefore get among my
friends of the 'faulxbourgs of St. Germayne's' if I can.
Add. and endt. gone. 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 44.]
636. 'Extract from a letter written to the Clerk of the
Finances, Espallart of Dinant, the 28th of March.'
The river Meuse has for eight days past been blocked both below
Mézières and above as far as Mousson, so that nothing can come
down towards Namur or cross towards Luxembourg, for the soldiers,
who are in large number along the river. News came yesterday
from a good quarter that before three days there will be on the river
by order of the king 2,000 horses for his Highness's service ; and this
very day a merchant has certified me that there are 30 ensigns of
infantry about Chalons coming from Lyons, who will soon be on
the frontier of [sic] Mézières. On the occasion whereof it is
rumoured (l'on bruyt) that one company of horse and one of foot
are shortly to come to Philippeville to reinforce the garrison. M.
de Barlaymont and the deputies of Namur are at Tournay, to present
to the Prince of Parma 3,000 florins a month which the
Estates of Namur have granted for the pay of their garrison. They
say the foreigners are marching, and are already pretty near to
Burgundy ; wherefore requisition [? ammonition] has been made of
victuals everywhere, inventories having been made of all the grain
in the towns and open country of Luxembourg, and his provision
appointed to every householder for next August, with orders to
keep it well.
The Duke of Aerschot is marrying Mme de Beauvoix. The
Prince of Chimay having refused to do the duty, d'Assouville is
shortly to go on embassy to the King of France to know if he will
avow or disavow M. d'Anjou's doings. M. de Gommicourt's return
from Spain is expected shortly.
Copy. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XV. 84.]
637. FRANÇOIS DE CIVILLE to WALSINGHAM.
I hoped to be over there by the beginning of this month, which
has been the reason that I put off replying to your last, as I wished,
and as duty bade me ; but I have been delayed by the Duke of
Bouillon for reasons to me unknown. From what he tells me in
his letter of the 18th, I hope to be in London about Easter or soon
after. When I arrive, I shall not fail to call on you at once. I
pray God that I may also find my much-honoured lord and master
the Earl of Huntingdon, to whom I am sending a reply to a very
kind letter that he was good enough to write me ; which I have
ventured of enclosing in the packet for you, since I was very
anxious it should reach him safely. Please pardon the liberty I
have taken, and in return I will serve you all my life.
As to the particulars which you wished to know, you will here
and now have only the following, time being short : all the entrepreneurs
and the chasseurs are enemies of the lion and leopard,
promising themselves to line their garments with its skin, etc.
Coram pluribus utar ; hoping to show you by effects in all things
where there may be an opportunity for your service that the aforesaid
earl has bound me endlessly to his Excellency.—From 'your'
house at Rouen, 29 March 1582.
Add. in English. Endd. Fr. ¾ p. [France VII. 44.]
638. ROSSEL to WALSINGHAM.
Although I am awaiting (je suis attendant) some instructions on
my letters, continued regularly since the return of the Earl of
Leicester, I would not cease to continue my advices. His
Excellency after supping this evening in presence of his Highness
fell into an extreme weakness through the opening or rupture of a
vein, which had chosen (a voulu) to become ulcerated. The only
remedy has been to hold the blood back by many blisters, applied
on all parts of the body. This second event makes his friends
uneasy. It is in the hands of God rather than of men. You have
heard that two accomplices of the doer of the desperate deed have
paid in public the penalty of a 'courteous' death, at his
Excellency's desire ; and humanity worthy of his generous nature,
yet mischievous to the futherance of our affairs. Were it not
that those who are carrying on the war on the side of Flanders
had succeeded in surprising Lens in Artois, they would have
attacked some town in Flanders, which is now safeguarded by the
capture of Lens. This has made the enemy quit Flanders to
hasten in that direction, after burning the castle of 'Douxlieu'
which they had previously taken with some loss of their men.
His Highness took the oath to the States-General publicly and
solemnly on the 17th inst. subject to all the points contained in the
treaty, after which all those of the United Provinces did him
homage. Since then he has set on foot the ordering of his estate,
filling up the offices and posts at his pleasure. The system
established makes us hope for good. As for the war, the plan (le
dispositif) is great, if he is well followed, and granted the facilities
You will have heard how the Prince of Parma has written to the
towns of Ghent, Bruges, Ypres, Brussels and others, to submit
themselves to the king's obedience and mercy, now that their chief
the Prince of Orange was dead. This 'incongruity' and false
information have so assured the town and the people that they have
written and sent mocking letters, as you may please to see in that
of Messieurs of Ypres in answer to that which the Prince of Parma
had written them. I send you also that which went to those of
Brussels. All other details I think your agents will have furnished
you.—Antwerp, last of March 1582.
P.S.—I have not had time to write to the Earl of Leicester ; who,
if you please, will share this report.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XV. 85.]