LEICESTER to THE QUEEN.
"My most dear and gracious lady, I have received by Atie
your favourable and most comfortable letter. All bounden
and humblest duty be rendered therefor, praying to God to make
my life and service always acceptable unto your Majesty, as my
heart and only care is bent to please you.
I do perceive by some part of your Majesty's letter, as also
by a message delivered by Atye, that you are informed that I
have greatly discouraged the papists, being good patriots, having
no less interest in the cause than the protestants have, that I
had lost much by this dealing, and by new impositions and
exactions upon the people ; and further, your Majesty doth
wish me not to meddle in matters of religion here among
"For the first, I protest unto your Majesty upon my duty to
you, that I never dealt either particularly or generally against
any those we account papists here, but being persuaded as your
Majesty is, in respect they made show to be patriots with others
in the common cause, I have used them with all indifferency,
even as the rest. Nevertheless, I must let your Majesty know
that the matter is quite otherwise . . . for as I must needs make
the comparison, so will I refer it to your great wisdom to judge
of it. Let me, I humbly beseech you, to consider of the minds
of your own papists at home, what you have indeed found at
their hands whensoever occasion might serve them to show
otherwise their devotion. Myself had some experience of them
at home attending upon your person. For the time, I must say
I have had the like here now ; and must testify to your Majesty
by my knowledge, that I do find these papists here nothing
different from those at home ; for both desire change, let your
gracious and good nature be persuaded as shall please God.
They both love the Pope above all, and no longer hides it than
severe laws keeps them under. There is none dare here openly
impugn the laws established. In England they do, at least
they did not long since. There is no mass allowed, nor religious
orders of monks or friars or such like, within the United Provinces ;
yet such as were religious persons live still in divers towns, being
stipendaries without profession at all. But this fruit is found
in all such towns that the Prince of Parma hath continual intelligence
with them ; and not so in other places where such
want or that the papists be banished, as divers good and wellaffected
towns, having tasted of the dangerous practices of the
papists did before my coming hither . . . . . . thrust them out
. . . albeit in other respects they seemed to pay all duties of
taxes and impositions as well as the rest. But so affected were
they to the King by cause of religion, as they never left dealing
with his ministers. These towns are, at this hour, the only assured
places of these provinces, that have thus wisely dealt in
dividing their dangerous enemies from among them. I do
assure your Highness, those towns that have rendered of
late, the 'platt' is known to be laid only by papists, and
no doubt will be the very revolt of the countries again.
I do now remain in a place, Utrecht, that without a thousand
soldiers in garrison were gone to the enemy, being
the only key of all these parts. There be three or four other
towns where I am now fain to have a thousand, seven hundred,
and [i.e. or] eight hundred at the least in them, and only
for fear of the papists, they are so strong. Which manner of
government hath cost and will cost dear, for that we are fain to
bestow at this instant 10000 (fn. 1) Englishmen into towns, besides all
your Majesty's garrisons, to keep them from yielding up to the
enemy. And if by God's providence and your gracious permission,
our late troops had not come over as they did, there
had been at least ten or twelve great towns delivered up to the
Prince. And we are very credibly informed now that he was
procured and called into those parts, being promised that bringing
his forces they would render ; otherwise they durst not adventure,
—every town having a good party as there is a bad,—without
some forces, to hazard themselves. They find also the States
almost at their wits' end in all places upon bruits and rumours,
for fear of your Majesty's continuance in favouring these countries,
wherein the enemy hath not least laboured to sow it into many
men's minds the great doubt of it, a matter that hath above all
other wrought much for the Prince and greatly altered this
estate. In such sort, Madame, as believe me I am in great doubt
at this present what counsel to give you, what course shall be
best for you to take ; but herein I will rather use a word or
two in another piece of paper than make this letter too long and
troublesome." But my conclusion must be that suffering such
numbers of papists in towns, hath been already, and will be hereafter,
the overthrow of the greatest and best towns here.
"Touching any new imposts or exactions, I never set any
upon these people. I have of late established, against the wills
of some here, a Chamber of Finances, by which I shall, as long as
shall please your Majesty, be sure to be privy to the levying
and bestowing of all their revenues ; a matter your Majesty hath
often sought to understand thereof, but with all the wit and means
I could use, could never certainly bring it to pass, nor never will
be but by this only way."
At least I shall be able to assure you of this State's ability,
and albeit I have never set any exactions upon these people,
I am in good hope that by means of this office I shall be able to
cut off and diminish divers hard impositions, to your great
honour and my poor credit with them.
"Touching dealing in matters of religion, your Majesty shall
see how wary I have been, although it was a matter principally
expected at my hands, upon the common hope all men had of
your Majesty ; being a chief article from you that you would
send a man of true religion to be in this place ; and the first thing
they made suit for to your Majesty was that the true religion,
as it was professed in England, also might be preserved here
among them. It was the substance of all their orations in praising
and thanking your Majesty for that blessing for them upon
my first arrival, and the matter a good while together after, that
they pressed me in ; yet did I not meddle, nor have done anything
but this, which I must of necessity yield unto, or else have
suffered such garboil as had not been meet to have seen. Your
Majesty will not believe the number of sects that were in most
towns and yet are in many ; specially Anabaptists, Families of
Love, Georgians and I know not what. The godly and good
ministers were impeached and molested in many places and ready
to give over ; some towns would have one manner and some
another ; yet the ministers always, I thank God, held to one
doctrine and one form, though these diversities grew among
magistrates in towns, being of some seditious sowers here yet in
authority. It grew so far as all the ministers desired a meeting
of two of every province, and to have of the gravest and wisest
learned councillors belonging to the State to be present at it,
to examine their religion, as also their manner and form used in
all churches ; for there is no other religion allowed public, but
only the protestant religion. They desired also to have had
two or three of your doctors and learned men in England to have
been here with them, which I did like very well of, for that I found
divers willing to follow the form of the church of England ; and
I wrote to have had Dr. Styll and Dr. James, (fn. 2) two very learned
and modest men, but they come not. These ministers have met,
without controversy or any trouble in the world, but as far as
I hear they all do concur in sound and true doctrine ; and a
great many of very learned and wise men is there placed in the
ministry, and religion increaseth exceedingly. When I came
to this town of Utrecht, here was a great division between two
protestant churches, not for any one piece of doctrine but only
for a bone of dissension cast between them by the atheists and
papists of the town. As I remember in England, I did know a
great papist defend a notorious puritan, thinking thereby to
set a variance between some churches and ministers there, to
discredit as he thought the doctrine ; but as he was discovered,
so were these men. They had named the one church Jacobyns,
and the other Consistorians, and so foul a breach was between
them as indeed they had almost discouraged all their auditors ;
and yet neither of both those churches differed any point in true
doctrine. Great complaints were made to me, and I could do
no less, neither for your Majesty's honour nor mine own conscience
but cause such a difference to be heard, since otherwise there
was like a great revolt of many well given to religion to be presently ;
whereupon, the matter being examined and heard, it
fell out flatly upon my duty to your Majesty that it was nothing
but a mere scandalous practice, and the ministers meeting
quietly together before those I appointed, both sides laid open
and accused the doers and authors thereof, being the very principal
officers of all this town, and men seeming to favour this religion,
to avoid suspicion and to get authority, for a known papist may
bear no chief office in any town. And here have I opened all
that is done or hath been done since I came into these countries,
yet have I been in the most of all the best towns in them ; and
since the discovery of this lewd practice in this town, the ministers
do the best agree in the world, and lament greatly their own
folly to suffer the controversy so long.
"Thus far, my most gracious lady, have I troubled you for
those three points which I perceived you had some information
of, but the very truth I have told you, and if I have been negligent
in any duty of mine, I confess it to your Majesty, it is that I have
done so little to the furtherance of that religion which, God be
thanked, both your Majesty professeth and is your strength
now to maintain it."
The Prince of Parma is at Venlo, a town that gave up even as
Grave did without any battery more than one day, or any assault
or breach made. They supposed I could not succour them, and
therefore the townsmen wrote to me that if I could relieve them
within twenty days, they would hold it. "I did send them such
as I was able within three days, but they had given it up, against
the soldiers' wills, upon a sudden hearing my companies were
coming—for I had appointed 8000 men and 1000 horse to go to
them—. . . and opened a gate and let in 800 Spaniards and 300
horse ; and so entrapped the poor soldiers."
One of the burghers has since sent to Colonel Schenks and said
he knew not whom to serve, "hearing your Majesty would defend
them no longer, and the States they would not serve nor
obey, having had always a duke or a king to their lord." Truly,
divers towns hold out for their promise to me as your General
and not for the States, and will take no garrison but English,
and if they were lost they are the very keys to the heart of Holland
and Zeeland. And Utrecht, Gelderland and Overyssel will
hold no longer than your Majesty doth protect the countries.
"I am fallen into a matter reserved for another place, and
would fain, but that I have too long troubled your Majesty
already, enter here into another, but I will here now end, craving
humble pardon for my fault herein," and praying continually
to God long to keep and preserve your Majesty with all his best
blessings.—Utrecht, 26 June.
Holograph. 7 pp. [Holland VIII. 120.]
LORD NORTH to BURGHLEY.
The bearer has long loved my house, and well deserved my
love. He finds himself overmatched with too mighty an enemy
in the law, and is undone unless your good lordship will further
him with your favour. He is come out of England on purpose
for this letter, and I beseech you for my sake to do him all the
good you can.
I have nominated Justice Suite to exercise the office of the
Isle [qy. of Ely], and assure myself you will see my possession
continued in my absence. On my return I will be ordered by
your lordship, or any you shall appoint for determining the same.
The burghers of Venlo, in Skink's absence, sent to the Prince,
then lying before Grave, and offered, if he made any battery or
assault, to yield up the town. To keep promise, upon a small
battery they (being far stronger than the soldiers) suddenly
put themselves in arms, came to the soldiers' quarters, and
ordered them to throw away their weapons if they wished to
save their lives, saying "they had yielded the town to the Prince,
whose soldiers were already entered the gates. Their own
soldiers did as they were commanded, and were driven out by
the burghers without weapons. The Prince suffered them to pass,
and some few were slain which remained in the town." The
Prince commanded that Skink's wife should bring out what she
could carry, and gave her safe-conduct to Gueldres. Skinks says
he has lost 100000 crowns worth of plate and other goods. Venlo
and Grave were two of the strongest towns in all these lands.
All the towns have more papists than protestants, who labour
continually to bring in the Prince ; and the good men entreat
my lord to send them English soldiers, or all will be lost. It is
written that two of the burgomasters of Arnhem are gone to the
Prince to offer him the town. My lord is presently sending 800
men thither ; 400 to Amersford ; 400 to Waghenen ; 1000 to
Huesden, which is much suspected to favour the enemy. At
least 1500 must remain in this town, for it is very mutinous and
factious. He will keep few about him, but put all into garrison
until he hears where the Prince will next go, and then go into
the field. The Prince is twice as strong in the field both in horse
and foot as he is ; "I fear we shall not do much but defend,
and that with great danger. . . The whole country is full of
treason by these papists, and my lord keepeth nothing but with
strong hand. His lordship travaileth in body and mind as much
as a man can possibly do. If he were not of great providence and
of marvellous patience, it were impossible for him to bear their
unthankful dealing and most vile and miserable usage. He was
set back by her Majesty ; but if God grant him life and her
Majesty's favour, he will work all to some notable good end.". . .
Utrecht, 26 June, . Year date given in endorsement.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Holland VIII. 121.]
SIR THOS. CECIL to BURGHLEY.
I could not let a passenger [boat] go into England without declaring
my safe arrival, and my love and duty to your lordship.
Our passage was safe but slow. We embarked at Gravesend at
5 oclock on Thursday morning [June 23] and did not reach the
Brill until 4 oclock of the next afternoon. "We had like to have
had some little fights by the way with our pinnace, by meeting
of a Scottish bark of eight score ton, with six score Scottish
soldiers within her, and one Montgomery, one as he saith himself,
near in credit and place to the King of Scotland ; one that hath
served in the Low Countries and captain of that ship. There is
great suspicion, as the Scottish man saith, that he was a taking
man, notwithstanding his excuse was that being without a pilot,
he durst not put in, neither into Flushing nor the Brill ; but
bearing into the wind of us, by the nimbleness of our pinnace we
won the wind of him, and so wafting him to come near and to
strike his bonnet, finding him unwilling to do it, we made so near
a shot at him as at the length we made him and the master of
the ship to come aboard of us with her skiff, and sent two of our
mariners aboard of her, where we found unlawful lading, both
sea coal and barrels of salt, without cocquet." We kept the
Captain and master aboard of us, and brought the ship into this
haven, where she is now. The captain is gone with letters of
credit to his Excellency, and I stay both men and ship until his
This day, Sunday the 26th. I go towards Utrecht, hoping to
find him [his Excellency] there, but there is a bruit that as
tomorrow he will be at the Hague. News here is none but the
assurance of the loss of Venlo, by the treason of the townsmen,
not the soldiers, for on the entry of the enemy, many of the
soldiers were put to the sword. They say that Skynke has won
a town within the territory of Cologne, called 'Kesarstowne,'
but that the castle as yet holds out.
"Craving pardon for my scribbling so fast," as the bearer stays
for my letter, I humbly take my leave.—The Brill, 26 June.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Holland VIII. 122.]
DE Loo to BURGHLEY.
I wrote from Antwerp to your lordship. On the 14th instant
old style, I arrived at the camp, and the following day, by favour
of President Richardot, his Highness gave me audience. I
made my reverence on behalf of your lordship and Mr. Controller
[Crofts], giving him briefly the substance of what three days
later I sent to him in writing, of which I send you a copy, together
with what I wrote to the President to communicate to the Prince,
which he did. He replying to me at first but little, demanded
what the Queen wished, and promised to endeavour to do it ;
to which I replied that I was not come to treat with his Highness
on such a subject, but only on the matter of the personage who
should be sent ; giving him an account of what was contained
in my Instructions, and saying further that I had by letters
signified divers times to Signor Lanfranchi the causes which had
moved the Queen to send troops into Holland and Zeeland, for
the securing of her own dominions, as also because of the treaties,
both particular and general, between her kingdom and those
countries, especially their nearest provinces, allied with her
from old times, and from the misfortunes of which there could
not but arise danger to herself, when she saw them oppressed by
foreign troops ; having likewise written to him concerning the
Queen's claim for the satisfaction of her subjects for the injuries
suffered by them from the arrest of their persons and goods in
Spain and Portugal, by reason of whose great complaints she
was constrained to grant them letters of reprisal, without knowing
at all what the said arrests might import ; but when informed of
the matter, she would give the King all sufficient satisfaction.
Upon which his Highness said to me, it might be all right, but
meanwhile, by the facts so far, they had reason to judge very
badly of it. And as these things had already been treated of
with others (although not with so much ground to work upon)
he wished for a day or two to think, before dispatching me.
Then following the taking of Venlo, which kept him occupied,
he had me sent for on the 23rd and excusing himself that for the
above causes he had not been able to dispatch me earlier, said
that he had considered of what he had heard from me, and seen
my written paper, which was very good, provided that what
followed should agree thereunto ; but that where I urged that
a personage should be sent, he found that this did not agree
with one "Graffignia," who had also said that he was sent to
him by the Lord Treasurer, Controller and others, and moreover
discoursed of matters on behalf of her Majesty, with whom he
said he had spoken ; he only desiring that some private person
should be sent to her ; so that there might be the more secrecy,
and not a considerable personage as I demanded. And having
seen by what M. de Champagney wrote, that he had learned from
me (being in Antwerp) that it was of consequence to your Lordship
and Mr. Controller for a person to be sent into England,
and Graffignia then wishing to return home, he had ordered
William Bodenham to go on his Highness' behalf to the Queen,
with a letter given to this Graffina, which being done in conformity
with his petition on the part of the Lord Treasurer and
Controller, he could do nothing more until he should have the
reply and see that on that side also (since he had already begun
to attacare il filo) some overture should be made, whereby he
might then much better furnish what should be wanted.
To which I replied that I believed Graffina had not been either
with your Lordship or with Mr. Controller ; because, if so, neither
of you would have suffered me to come hither with the Instructions
from Mr. Controller, the whole desire in which was that a
person of quality should be sent as soon as possible, so that, he
treating personally with her Majesty, all delays should be avoided
which might obstruct the success of the business. Good (then
said his Highness), from what I hear from you, I give credit both
to what you say and to the Instructions which you bring, (although
they are not signed by anyone) ; but seeing that what
he had told me had already happened, he must wait to see what
her Majesty would reply ; and if she shall be as well disposed to
the accord as I affirmed (although, he said, her actions hitherto
had shown the contrary), he will not be wanting, on his part,
to do all good offices with the King his Master ; from whom however,
he had not as yet absolute authority in relation to this
matter. Nevertheless, if the Queen is willing to proceed to a
reconciliation, he has no doubt that all will go well, he himself
desiring it more than any other, without wishing to speak of the
past ; showing himself, in truth, the most benign prince, I believe,
to be found in the whole world.
He said to me also that some days ago he had resolved to send
some one (but in consequence of important matters it did not
go forward) with another proposal, concerning which I will not
trouble your lordship, it being of no great consequence.
Upon this, humbly thanking his Highness both for his gracious
eudience and that he had been pleased to read the few writings
shown him by President Richardot, with the hope that he would
take them in good part, he said : I have seen the writings ; thank
you for the trouble taken, and will gratify you if I can. Praying
him, moreover, that—since at this time it did not appear that
he could do anything further—it would please him to give me
something to show that I had explained to him the contents of
my Instruction :—Good (he said), very willingly ; and salute for
me the Lord Treasurer, Mr. Controller and the rest of those
lords, as well as her Majesty, if you should speak with her.
This is the sum of what little I have negotiated, and as I am
sending Edward Morris, Mr. Controller's man with it, you will
learn from him the particulars of what he has seen and heard ;
and intending to remain in Antwerp for some days, if your
lordship shall wish me to do any other service, I shall always be
honoured by your commands, and with the support of the Signors
Champagney and Richardot will do my utmost endeavours
that all things may go on according to your desire, finding both
of them very well disposed towards the business. And having
divers times talked with the said Richardot at large, he has
always affirmed very seriously that if I am not mistaken in my
opinion of the real intention on that side for peace, he holds it
for very evident that a good agreement may be made, knowing
that his Highness has no other intention than to proceed with the
Queen in all sincerity, provided the same be done with him.
Venlo is surrendered on fair conditions. It is not known which
way his Highness will now take ; who has news that the king's
fleet has been at San Domingo, and was seeking for Drake, to
fight with him.—The Camp before Venlo, 25 June, 1586, old
Postscript. I send you the articles of the rendition of Venlo,
sent by his Highness to M. de Champagney, and pray you to
show them to Mr. Controller.
Further postscript. After writing the above, as I was about to
dispatch Edward Morris, his Highness having given me a good
escort of soldiers to accompany me to Antwerp, I am not sending
the said Morris away until tomorrow, with orders to cross as
quickly as possible.
I have talked again two or three times with the President and
by what I can gather from him, I see that the Prince is now
quite determined to send a personage, upon my writing which
the President showed to him, as also to Secretary Cosmo,
and this gives me hopes of taking with me either M. de Champagney
or the Sieur Richardot if, before then, the form of the
reply to his Highness do not disturb it. And having imparted to
M. de Champagney what I had negotiated with his Highness,
he said that the business had been begun very well ; and as he
would certainly favour the cause very much, and would desire
above all that by the Queen's means the afflicted Low Countries
might be freed from foreign soldiers, it would not be a bad
thing for her Majesty to reply to his Highness in the form which
I send her by my note (conceived from the discourse of the said
M. de Champagney) ; so that as soon as one or the other should
come thither, it should appear that such a matter has been
requested of the Queen ; and if she would be pleased to write also
to M. de Champagney briefly, (as to a person with whom she has
already begun to treat in the past, and remaining always in the
same disposition) there is no doubt but that it would greatly
assist, showing clearly that the said Champagney has the matter
at heart, tending to the former liberty of the country, with due
obedience to its natural prince ; and that consequently the Queen
would by this means have security to remain in peace and tranquillity.
In short, when I signified to the President that I was
going to send Morris over and that I should remain for a short
time in Antwerp, for some business of my own, he said that
would not be a bad plan, and that some time soon we may see
each other in England, which God grant.
I pray your lordship to pardon me if I presume too much,
being urged on by my great zeal for the public good, and that by
this holy treaty there may be brought about, with the general
pacification of all these Low Countries, universal consolation
and the greatest glory to her Majesty ; and M. de Champagney
having written the little letter (which goes with this to your
lordship), I pray you to send him a few lines in reply, in Latin,
Italian or French.—Antwerp, 27 June, 1586, stilo vecchio.
Postscript. Be pleased to notice this letter very carefully,
and in case of need (for it is somewhat ill written) to call my chief
man, Bartolomeo Schorer to clear up anything that you find
obscure, and to let me know your will. And herewith going
also the letter which the Prince wrote to you, you will henceforward
the way sufficiently open to set this business on foot
freely and with reputation.
Add. Endd. by Burghley. Italian, 3 pp. [Flanders I. 90.]
(1). Copy of the Remonstrance made by Andrea de Loo to
his Highness the Prince of Parma. June 27, 1586.
Endd. with date by Burghley. Italian. 1¾ pp. [Ibid. 90 a.]
(2). Copy of the writing given by de Loo to President
Richardot, which the latter showed to his Highness and left with
him. June 27.
Endd. as above. Italian. 1¼ pp. [Flanders I. 90 b.]
(3). Suggestions by Andrea de Loo for letters from her
Majesty to the Prince and to M. de Champagney.
That to the Prince to be very courteous and only in general
terms (as was his to her), in order to the setting up of a good
correspondence between them.
That to M. de Champagney to be confidential, thanking
him for his favours to the English, praying him to continue
in this good disposition, and assuring him of the same from her
Majesty towards himself ; who, as he knows well, showed no other
desire (when he was in England) than that the Low Countries
might be at peace, observing the duty and reverence which they
owed to the King of Spain, whom she did not wish to prejudice
in any way. But seeing these people made desperate by the
violent actions of strangers (by which England also received
injury) and that all the neighbouring princes were living in
mistrust, especially her Majesty, whom they have divers times
sought to disturb, and to stir up her kingdom :—rather than
see those countries in the hands of another prince (as it was seen
that they were seeking to put themselves) her only thought was
how to hinder this, endeavouring with the King of Spain
that he would mercifully moderate the harshness and new customs
in the government of the Low Countries ; and this failing, she
determined to treat with her neighbours, in order to maintain
the traffic, treaties and other leagues which from olden times
there have been between the realm of England and the Low
Countries and their natural princes respectively, having no hope,
if those countries should in desperation fall into any other hands
than her own, that those things might be maintained or restored.
And that this was her meaning has been made manifest to all,
not only by her actions, but by her own justification.
And her first duty being her own preservation, and next that
of her subjects, she would be glad that, on this condition, all
the Low Countries should return to the obedience of the King of
Spain, under the management of natives of those countries,
who are natural subjects of that King ; removing the mistrust
between them by withdrawing the strangers who are the cause
thereof, and leaving the governments, forts, administrations and
commands to the said natives, as is reasonable for the greater
tranquillity of all. This being so, the Queen, with the word of
his Majesty, on which she relies (imputing to the strangers, his
ministers all the aforesaid matters) will be willing to put all
things back to their old footing ; and having, as all know, incurred
her charges there entirely for the sake of the said tranquillity—
that the States shall give her sufficient security to satisfy her, in
conformity with the conditions which they agreed upon with her.
Endd. Italian. 1 p. [Ibid. 90 c.]
Each of these papers is noted as being "From Andrea de Loo,
27 June, 1586."
(4). Copy of the Articles agreed upon between the Prince of
Parma on the one hand, and Jehan van Vogelsanck, doctor of
medicine ; Maitre Pierre Mont, licentiate in law ; Guillaume van
Oyen ; Pierre Hooft ; Guillaume Dorss ; Sebastien van Loen and
Guillaume Cremer, deputies from the town on the other, for the
surrender of Venlo.
His Highness agrees to pardon all past faults and to receive
those of the town or who, notwithstanding that he has very
just cause of resentment against them for not accepting his
courtesies and benign offers made by Ores on his arrival in this
place, yet to take some course that he has always done to have
compassion on his subjects and vassals rather than to ruin them,
have taken refuge therein into the King's mercy, giving them
full enjoyment of their goods and promising to treat them as
loyal subjects of his Majesty, and to prove to them that his
intention has never been to abolish or diminish the privileges
and customs of the country, but rather to preserve and increase
He will do all good offices to the neighbour princes, and especially
to the Duke of Cleves, that they may not call the citizens
of Venlo to account for wrongs done to themselves and their
subjects, when they see the said citizens returned into the King's
To the burghers having divers goods, rents and credits in
Holland and Zeeland and other rebel places, he promises that
when he comes to treat with these rebels, he will do what he can
that the said burghers may not be injured.
All who wish to depart may do so freely within six months,
during which time they may remain in the town, living peaceably,
and if at the end of that time they wish to remain, may do so.
And may enjoy all their property if they do not go over to the
Those having goods in rebel countries may go thither to take
order in their affairs, and return freely within three months.
And to comfort the burghers, all tailles, gabels and other
means imposed during the troubles shall be abolished, not to be
revived without the advice and consent of those of old consulted
in the matter.
As for the soldiers who wished to hold the place, and know
what they deserve, having endured the cannon after being
courteously summoned, they may freely depart, without horses,
arms or other booty save what they can carry ; and shall have
good escort to some safe place.
And for Col. Schenk's consort, as his Highness is not accustomed
to make war on women, she may freely depart with the men of
the garrison, and her sister, serving-men and waiting women.—
Camp before Venlo, 28 June. Signed Alexandre, and below
Copy. Endd. by de Loo, and dated by Burghley "27 Junii,
1586," Fr. 2¾ pp. [Flanders I. 90 d.]
LEICESTER to THE QUEEN.
"Before I begin, my most Gracious lady, I am more than
afraid for too long troubling you, but being desirous in this
matter to deal chiefly with your own self maketh me to presume
the further in this boldness.
"I humbly beseech you to give me leave to look a little backward
for some part of my matter, that my meaning may the
easlier appear unto your Majesty. My desire first is that all
the good reasons which moved you to take this cause in hand
may procure your Majesty to a more full deliberation thereof,
and that some such new resolution may in time follow as either
may give you great cause to proceed in that you have undertaken,
or else to take some just occasion to make stay of your further
adventure. As far as my poor capacity will stretch unto, whatsoever
former reasons have been to draw you into this business,
I do not find it so followed that either your Majesty doth fancy
the proceeding in it, or so persuaded of the necessity of it as you
may think your treasure or charge so well bestowed as it may
countervail other objections conceived upon the ground of the
matter to your self. For mine own opinion and counsel I set
aside as the least and simplest of all, for I do find now my affection
and duty carried me further on, or rather further off from the
safer course than a wiser and waryer mind would have done.
There was three ways I remember preponed touching this
enterprise to your Majesty, either to be sovereign, protector, or
an aiding friend. The first two your Majesty had no liking of ;
the last you have taken thus far hitherto in hand ; I leave therefore
to utter my conceit of the two former as a matter resolved
by your Majesty not to meddle withal. Touching the last, as
an helper to this poor afflicted people I do think I may safely
say to your Majesty that if your aid had been in such apparent
sort to these countries that they might assure themselves of any
certain time of continuance of the same, and that you had taken
their cause in deed to heart, I am verily persuaded that they
would have given very good testimonies by their very large contributions,
to maintain their wars for such certain number of
years to be set down as your Majesty should appoint and like
of ; and no prince nor practice of any person living able to draw
them from you.
But I need not tell your Majesty what conceits have been
taken of late in the higher and wiser sort of your cold favour
toward them, and how weary it seems to them you be of them,
and how willing you could be that any other had them so you were
rid of them. Many tokens of this they think they have, and
divers there be that have been ready to do all ill offices rather to
confirm this opinion in them than to comfort them, which state
of this matter is that which causeth me thus boldly to write to
your Majesty, and to assure you that I find it very far gone among
those that I know were most fast to your Majesty, and yet I do
think had rather live with bread and drink [water?] under your
protection than to enjoy all their possesssions under the King of
Spain. It hath almost broken their hearts to think your Majesty
should not care more for them. For my part I have done and
daily doth my whole uttermost to make them think the contrary,
and deface all I can all such lewd wretches as feeds these humours,
but my duty is to inform your Majesty of the truth. I am
verily persuaded and I have great cause so to persuade your
Majesty to believe that if it shall appear that your Majesty's
assistance will be but for a short time, as five or six months or
for a year, it will be to no purpose but to draw you on the deeper
with the King of Spain, and to spend the rest of your charges to
greater loss. I see so far now into these men's minds and the
conceit so fast increaseth as it is my part to let you know it
first to yourself, that you may resolutely consider with yourself
what is meetest to do.... Let it now be deeply considered and
all good expedition used, for if you shall resolve and find it good
to proceed with these men but for a small time, and they to know
it, be you most assured, they will be gone before your Majesty
shall almost hear of it."
But though it should be substantially debated, "few or none
but yourself may be privy to your full mind, especially if you
shall not mean to go through with these people ; and yet to set
the best countenance you can of it, with all good encouragements
and well using them ; for if they shall stand fast unto you, your
Majesty shall be always able to make the best end for them."
"I will likewise, without further binding you, both encourage
them in your Majesty's name, and God willing now we have some
men, will not fail to occupy the enemy in as many places as I
can devise, and I trust you shall hear well of us, "or else it shall
cost your ö ö (fn. 3) both their lids."
Besides this, I hope to get into my hands three or four principal
places in North Holland, which will be such a strength to you
that you may rule these men, make war or peace as you list ;
always provided that whatsoever is said, you do not for anything
"depart" with the Brill ... and having those places in
your hands, whatsoever shall chance to these countries, your
Majesty, I will warrant sure enow to make what peace you will
.... But I beseech you "show all favour and goodness to the
States and these countries, and I doubt not but you will perform
whatsoever you have promised them, that must needs be your
Majesty's course, whether you proceed longer with them or no.
I trust your Majesty will have deep and thorough consideration
if you shall not think good to hold them thus to yourself whether
you will conclude them by peace with the King of Spain so to
restore his authority here again ; or else consent they take some
other prince, or to see whether any faction may be found out
here to hold the K[ing] occupied still ; for assuredly I can never
think but if he do settle himself here, your Majesty shall never
be quiet after, in England your own vile papists will doubtless
deal for him ; God Almighty preserve you from it, and from their
power. For mine own part I will not leave these matters till
they be better settled one way or other, though it hath pleased
your Majesty of your great goodness to grant me leave to come,
as I shall find things settled here ; and your Majesty using
these States and the countries with your present countenance
at this time, God knows what great good it may do even this
summer, the better to assist your consultation against hereafter.
And for the certainty of their abilities to maintain their
wars. I hope within twenty days to give your Majesty some near
reckoning of all their revenues every way.
Your Majesty doth suppose I deal weakly with these men,
but I would you did know in deed how I have dealt with them of
late, as well to bring this office of finances to pass, as for the money
delivered to them by your treasurer. I had a good will to have
dealt so long since roundly with them, I confess, but my case
was too well known to them, but as soon as my heartening came
from mine old supporter, I was found a more shrew than your
Majesty will believe, for mine old patience hath been too much
tried since I came from my quiet home to this wayward generation.
"I have flitted perhaps from one thing to another, and so
may fall from my chief purpose, for my intention is, to let your
Majesty understand how necessary it is for you to resolve what
proceeding shall be meetest for you with these countries, and that
you may assuredly know not only how far onward many here be
toward a revolt, but without some hope of assurance of your
Majesty's further continual defence and assistance they will
run headlong the course some hath begun, that hereupon your
Majesty may in your wisdom resolve so as you may take some
safe way for yourself, and in the mean time graciously to use
them, and freely perform to them that which they may justly
claim from you.
In which time if by your gracious dealing there may only
be a stay of men's minds here, be one found from despair of your
goodness, you will have gained much,....for time will bring
further directions and your strength and advantage be increased
"And whatsoever may be alleged...let me lose all with your
Majesty—and that is with me all the world—if the only conceit
that your Majesty will leave them, and the assured reports given
out as well from England itself as from merchants in Antwerp as
the Prince himself that a peace was in treaty between your
Majesty and him be not at this hour and hath been the cause
these two months past of all the revolts and alteration of this
State now like to be.
"I deal, as my duty is, simply and plainly with your Majesty,
God is witness, for you shall find it so, and I do not doubt, upon
the gracious dealing of your Majesty yet with them, shall make
it appear so. And therefore is my opinion, howsoever you shall
determine for your full resolution, the good usage of these men
to recover them into good heart and hope of your Majesty can
do no hurt, for you may at all times deal better for them and
thereby for yourself also, than upon this sudden conceit or
desperate mislike they shall be able to do for themselves ; for
no other end can be looked for in this sort but utter confusion
of the whole, wherein I shall be most cheifly sorry it should come
to pass for your Majesty's sake, for the King of Spain coming in on
that manner will breed no small danger to your estate. It were
better any way than this way."
I have so far troubled your Majesty with my poor opinion...that
the evil may be prevented, offering my life for your service and
my care and diligence to keep all here in the best temper I can
devise. For the revenue, I hope to be able to make you know
not only what it is but, if promise be kept by the wisest here for
these matters, to find them able to maintain their own wars
themselves, although hitherto it has been, for lack of order and
government, consumed to little purpose ; craving letters from
you to the Council of State, to say how well you like of their
care to bring their revenues into order ; and to myself "to be
careful with your great charge thereof." And if it please you
to write to the States General, "somewhat earnestly to recommend
their care of me in generalty unto them, that they may
perceive you are my good lady and not set me here as a man
altogether in oblivion," it will further my service for you and
increase my credit with them.
Lastly I would trouble you for your poor soldiers here. I
think it is not there believed, though I have often written it,
that the treasure has not been disposed as your Majesty is informed
or the bills under the captains' hands give testimony.
"There was never such fleecing of poor men, and...I beseech
you to have compassion of them," and if the treasurer says he
cannot finish his account without he make up this pay, let him
be present, but let another be disposer of the money upon the
reckonings the treasurer brings in. "And where my imprests
seem great...I pray God you take no more loss in other disbursements
than in that.... As for the allowance for myself,
I trust your Majesty will not have me to be a general of your
army and to have no allowance, or not as much as every man
heretofore of my calling hath had. It appears there was small
care had how I for my faithful heart to your Majesty should
consume myself in this service, for I perceive some do think it
much I should have allowance in your pay, and yet never took
order for me with the States. I pray God I may live to see you
employ some of them...to see whether they will spend 20,000l.
of their own for you in seven months. I know what your Majesty
will say, but all is in mine own heart too little, though the greatest
portion of all my land pay for it, so your Majesty do well accept
of it." I have never up to this day had from these States but
a thousand pounds, yet I am sure one letter from my lords of
your Council to the States General would have caused them to
deal well with me. Perhaps they looked to be pressed from
thence, or it may be "that after they heard of your Majesty's
displeasure, they thought to save so much by me.... But this
matter will now easily be holpen, I know, upon your best signification....
I am sorry I have joined your General and your
poor soldiers together, but God doth know I take as much care
for them as for myself."
I have been so ill handled for them by the treasurer (though
I think others as much in fault as he), that I have vowed, without
your express command never to deal with him, or sign him any
more warrants. The causes are too great to trouble you with,
but I trust you think me an honest and true man, and will match
me with such as will deal faithfully to your service and uprightly
towards your poor soldiers. "Your Majesty doth see I pour
all out to yourself, and so I mean to do still, till you shall show
I weary you."
I thought to have entered somewhat into the cause of Denmark,
but I have declared that whole matter to Cox, Mr. Vice-Chamberlain's
secretary. I am informed—but cannot say for certain—
that that King has now an agent with the Prince of Parma.
Of this and other things as they fall out your Majesty shall hear ;
and I trust to understand from yourself your mind touching
this letter.—Utrecht, 27 June.
Holograph. 5½ pp. [Holland VIII. 123.]
THE QUEEN to [The CAUTIONARY TOWNS?]
Assuring them of the pleasure with which she has heard from
the Earl of Leicester of their good carriage in regard to what he
has proposed to them for the advancement of affairs there. If
they continue in their conformity and good-will in perfecting
what he finds good for the present cause (which indeed is their
own, and in which she has interested herself from love of their
state) they will find her constant to procure them every good, as
she has already shown them, and of which they may be assured
notwithstanding all the bruits spread abroad to the contrary.
Endd. "27 June, 1586. Minute of her Majesty's letters in
French, to be endorsed by my Lord of Leicester to such towns
as he shall think good."
Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. VIII. 124.]
Rough draft, much corrected, of the above.
Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. VIII. 124a.]
June 27./July 7.
News from BOMMELWARD.
The enemy is retired towards Rossum, from difficulty of getting
victuals, which, coming along the Maas, he has to land and carry
some miles by waggons, as the Schanz of Vueren hinders the
passage of ships. And His Excellency has made a half-moon
on the Brabant side, over against Vueren, where he may lodge
four or five thousand men, to hinder the passing of the victuals
by land. News comes to day of the overthrow of five or six
hundred of the enemy, "most of them armed for musket proof" ;
on our side about ninety slain, but particulars not yet known.
Endd. "From Bommelward." ½ p. [Ibid. VIII. 125.]
AUDLEY DANETT to WALSINGHAM.
Many reasons have moved me to seek to remain in your favour
and to do you what service I can, which heretofore I have endeavoured
by my "often letters" touching affairs in these parts,
but now that the personages employed in the action are so near
to your honour that you cannot be unadvertised of the smallest
accident, it might seem arrogancy in me to trouble you with
superfluous letters. Thus much I prayed some friends in England
to allege to you, for my better excuse, but not having heard
how you were pleased to like thereof, I presume to trouble you
"with these my idle letters," which I trust you will take in
good part, as from one ever ready to do you service.—Utrecht,
27 June, 1586.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland VIII. 126.]
June 27./July 7.
Extract from the resolution of the States-General of the
provinces of the United Netherlands wherein his Excellency
consented to the 4000 gulden for the establishment of a field
camp.—7 July, 1586.
Signed C. Aerssens. Copy. Dutch. 2 pp. [Ibid. VIII.
R. HUDDILSTON to BURGHLEY.
Before perusing the articles delivered him in his lordship's
presence by Mr. Secretary, he hoped "by coating [? quoting]
them in the margin" to answer everything in full. But seeing
they are many, and urged against him very vehemently, he finds
he cannot explain the truth "without some needful circumstance"
and therefore beseeches his lordship to give him respite
one day longer, and on Monday he will not fail to attend with
answer to every article particularly ; wherein, as near as he can,
he will be "armed with truth and a good conscience." Let the
rest fall out as pleases God.—27 June, 1586.
Holograph. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. VIII. 128.]
June 27./July 7.
CHAMPAGNEY to BURGHLEY.
Signor Andrea de Loo has been the more welcome to me in
that he brought me news of your lordship's health, and testimony
of your favourable remembrance of me. I have heard what he
has communicated to me from thence, and he has learned from me
what I thought would serve to give good success to his journey ;
referring it to him to bear witness of the memory I preserve of
the many favours received in that kingdom, and especially from
your lordship, whom I cannot neglect this opportunity of saluting,
praying God to preserve you in happiness and prosperity.—
Antwerp, 7 July, 1586.
Signed. Add. Endd. by Burghley. [Flanders I. 91.]
Paper endorsed "Articles exhibited against the Treasurer at
Wars in the Low Countries by Mr. Hunt the auditor and Mr.
Barker." Headed "Some causes for which my Lord of Leicester
disliketh with Mr. Huddilston, her Majesty's Treasurer at wars for
the Low Countries."
1. p. [Holland VIII. 129.]
"The answer of Richard Huddilston, Esq., Treasurer at the
Wars, to the articles exhibited against him."
4 pp. [Ibid. VIII. 130.]
SIR PHILIP SIDNEY to WALSINGHAM.
Asking for countenance and favour for his cousin, Sir Richard
Dyer, a very valiant and diligent gentleman, who has gone home
with leave to bring over 500 men.
Is himself going towards Flushing, whence he hears that his
honour's daughter "is very well and merry."—Utrecht, 28 June,
Holograph. Add. Endd. ¾ pp. [Ibid. VIII. 131.]
Paper in Burghley's handwriting, endorsed "29 June, 1586.
Memorial for matters of the Low Countries," being notes concerning
the payment of moneys by the Merchants Adventurers,
"out of the Receipt," &c.
1 p. [Ibid. VIII. 132.]
LEICESTER to SIR THOS. HENEAGE.
I am now going towards Bergen-op-Zoom, to see the place
and fortifications, and to understand of other matters there, as
it is a special mark for the enemy and I hear divers reports,
"whereof I cannot be so well resolved as by seeing it myself."
After which I mean to see some other places of importance.
Being now at Dort, I am "put in mind of the 'Scout's' son, (fn. 4)
who I would very gladly were delivered ; for he endureth very
grievous and lothsome imprisonment, beside the daily fear he
standeth in of his life." Wherefore I pray you to hasten the
sending over of 'Sobiour,' in order to redeem him, and haply
some others of our men at Dunkirk. Delays will take away
our opportunities, therefore let him [Zubiaur] be sent as soon as
possible to Dort, where he shall be safely kept.—Dort, 30 June.
Postscript. I mean very shortly to dispatch a messenger
to her Majesty touching matters of this State.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. VIII. 133.]
June 30./July 10.
"Postiles made to certain of the Treasurer's articles of answer
the 28 June," On the whole, favourable to Huddilston, but
many points referred to the Lord General.
Endd. "10 July, 1586." 2 pp. [Holland VIII. 134.]
[Stephen] LE SIEUR to WALSINGHAM.
I would long since have advertised your honour of the late
barbarous proceedings towards me, were it not that there was
then here in the prison one Brudges, a merchant of London, who
presently departed with intention to declare to you what he
knew of my miseries. What has since happened to me, or what
favour I am to expect at mine enemies' hands, I leave to the
relation of this my good friend Dr. Josephus Micheli, who by
consent of the governor of this town and in presence of the
sergeant-major has visited me, and has heard what they mean
to do with me ; only humbly beseeching you to be assured that
neither long imprisonment, cruel looks and threatenings nor fair
promises have or shall cause me to forget 'neither' my duty
towards God 'nor' the service I owe your honour and my honourable
master ; but with a constant mind to abide all these miseries
and with patience expect God's time for my liberty.
Capt. Brackenbury and a gentleman of my lord of Leicester
named Charles Hast are here still. They have written divers
letters to my lord, declaring that a Spaniard, prisoner in Sluyse
is demanded for them both, and beseeching him to help them ;
as also to many of their friends, but receive no answer. "It
were good, for sundry respects ... that the said Captain were
at liberty and in Holland."
Last week four townsmen of Dover were brought hither
prisoners, among whom is one Edward Bates, not unknown (as
I judge) to your honour.
[Concerning his money difficulties.]
"What exclamations there are here upon such Englishmen
as have been here prisoners and now gone, specially my lord of
Oxford's gentlemen," this bearer can tell you, and all other
things of these parts, for he hath thoroughly tasted both of the
sweet and sour.—Dunkirk, being close prisoner, this last of
June, 1586, stilo antiquo.
Postscript. Capt. Brackenbury and Mr. Hast have received
a letter from one they sent to my lord, saying that the Spaniard
in Sluys was released before his coming, but that my lord "doth
take care" to exchange [them for some (fn. 5) ] other prisoner.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Flanders I. 92.]
"Exceptions taken by the French King and his Council to
the placard set forth by my lord of Leicester."
By this placard, he forbids all merchants and others of any
nation, to negociate, by money or merchandise with the subjects
of the King of Spain, or to take into neutral countries which are
part of the realm of France any corn or other merchandise without
his passport or safe-conduct. And also decrees that those who
pass by the seas and coasts of the United Provinces shall pay
droit de convoy or be declared good prize ; that those who sail for
France or other places towards the West must keep the high
sea, and if found within the banks of Flanders shall be confiscated ;
and that all ships of Calais, Boulogne, Dieppe and other towns
between Calais and Nantes, in which are found any subjects of
the Spanish King shall be forfeited and declared good prize.
In answer, his Majesty says :—
1. That the said placard is contrary to the treaty between
their Majesties, by which commerce has remained free to their
subjects in all provinces.
2. And although there is a dispute between the said Queen and
the King of Spain, yet his Majesty [of France] being at peace with
both, traffic cannot be forbidden to his subjects either into
Spain, England or the Low Countries.
3. Also, it has always been the custom that the subjects of a
King not at war may go into the kingdoms which are at war.
4. And this was done by the English during the last war
between France and Spain.
5. Therefore, for the said Earl to prevent the French traffic
to Spain would be to break the alliance between France and
6. Moreover, to declare the French ships taken by the Hollanders
and Zeelanders good prize, is contrary to all right, human
and divine, and his Majesty cannot suffer it.
7. And for this reason, requires the Queen to have prompt
satisfaction given to the French who have been pillaged, and—
8. To forbid the said Earl and all others to hinder the traffic
of the French into any place whatsoever.
9. And that the said Earl shall be made to give up the goods
pillaged by the Hollanders, and deliver them to the said French
in recompense of their losses, which her Majesty cannot refuse,
seeing that the Earl is her subject, and that the said goods are
under her obedience.
10. His Majesty long ago wrote to the said Queen to do
justice to Jehan Chevrier, merchant of Auvergne, for certain
merchandise laden at Calais in a Breton ship, taken by Jehan
Pedes, a Zeeland captain, carried into Zeeland and declared
good prize by the Admiralty there on Sept. 5, 1585, on the ground
that the said Chevrier had carried goods from Spain ; traded to
St. Omer, and bought in the Low Countries part of the merchandise.
His Majesty also wrote to the States, but they referred
the decision to the Earl, who has done no justice, but on the
contrary—in a letter written to the English ambassador and by
him exhibited to the King's Council—defends the said sentence ;
and nevertheless, it cannot be allowed if the Queen wishes to
maintain the alliance between the two realms, and the rather.—
11. Inasmuch as by their treaties it is no way forbidden to the
French to traffic with the subjects of the King of Spain, and that
such prohibitions by the Earl of Leicester can only take effect
upon those under his domination.
12. Moreover, even if they had been agreed to by his Majesty,
such merchandises as those of Chevrier have never been forbidden,
even in kingdoms at war ; and could only be confiscated
with great injustice.
13. And as the said Queen has seen very well the injustice
done to the said Chevrier, his Majesty prays her to give him
speedy satisfaction, as otherwise the faith of the two kingdoms
will be broken.
14. His Majesty also prays her to make the like satisfaction
to an infinite number of Frenchmen who have been taken by the
said Zeeland ships even since the time when she was to have
granted them stay of proceedings for six months.
15. And to give orders to let pass freely all French ships,
going and coming into France, without using any confiscation
or forfeiture in relation to them ; not detaining the said ships and
merchandises, as was done three months ago with several ships
laden with corn in other provinces to take into France.
16. Otherwise his Majesty cannot deny to his subjects the
means which it is customary to employ in regard to those who
deny them justice.—Made in the Council of the King held in
Paris and also at St. Maur des Fossés, June 1586. Signed Pinart.
Endd. Fr. 3 pp. [Holland VIII. 135.]
[Probably sent from England to the Earl of Leicester.]
THOS. DIGGES to his servant, WILLIAM HARFLEETE, clerk
of the musters at Flushing.
I would have you, against my coming to Flushing to cast up
your muster rolls and see what is due for every band, and what
checks there are for her Majesty's benefit. Tell Mr. Huntley
"that he is set down in the new roll to be in her Majesty's pay,
but Capt. Symms' and Capt. Wingfield's bands are in the States'
pay." Give notice of this to Mr. Wingfield and to Mr. Randall,
who has Symms' band, "that they may make means to have their
bands employed in some other service, for if they be found there
the next muster, the States perhaps will refuse to pay them.
They were put out of the Queen's roll to receive Sir Philip Sydney's
band and Capt. Huntley's ; as Capt. Rolles' band was sent away
to make place for Mr. Robert Sydney's."
Signed. Add. Endd. "June 1586." ½ p. [Ibid. VIII. 136.]
List of ships of war in the service of Holland, with their
captains, numbers, where they serve, and what their monthly
charges amount to. Headed Anno 1585, but probably for use
in 1586. On the last sheet, "List of men of war entertained by
those of Zeeland, Anno 1586.
6 pp. [Ibid. VIII., 137 ; last entry.]