LE SIEUR to SIR PHILIP SIDNEY.
Having miraculously recovered my health somewhat, I presume
to let your honour know the little appearance I, your poor and
faithful servant see as yet of my liberty, though often I receive
most comfortable letters, "yea already 50l. sterling," from Sir
It is about nine weeks since Mr. Bodenham came from the
Prince of Parma, and told me that the governor of Dordrecht's
son, prisoner in Luxembourg under the old Count of Mansfelt, (fn. 1)
was by no means to be exchanged with me for Pedro Cibiur,
desiring me to write the same to Sir Francis and beseech him that
Cibiur might be presently sent to Calais, for my relaxation and
some other Englishmen here prisoner ; saying he himself would
I accordingly wrote and gave the letters to him to be sent,
which was done, though before they came to Mr. Secretary's
hands, Cibiur was already sent to my lord of Leicester, as I have
learnt by a letter of October 10 from his honour to me, "advertising
me besides that he had written to Bodenham to procure that
I might be set at a reasonable ransom. After my often sending
unto Bodenham to come to me he came, but I found him no way
desirous or willing that I should enjoy my liberty till Cibiur
enjoy his. I find by Mr. Secretary's letters that he is persuaded
I receive great favours and friendship of this 'renegat' and double
Bodenham ; but I do daily, to my great pain and grief, taste and
see the contrary, and shall yet more, I fear. To induce him to
some good and short end, as well for Cibiur his friend as for me,
I told him that if he would obtain me leave of this governor, that
I might repair to your honour, I would here take my oath, either to
set Cibiur free at liberty or to yield myself here a prisoner again."
He agreed, but demanded sureties for 10,000 French crowns, in
case either 'willingly' or by any accident I should not return.
A friend here, Thomas Beale, a merchant, offered to pledge body
and goods for me, but his goods did not amount to so much and
he was refused. I have prayed him to trouble no more about it ;
"his friendship hath been such towards me in this my misery,
as I shall be beholding to him so long [as] I live."
Perceiving Bodenham's double dealings, I desired to hear the
Governor speak, "who at my request came unto me, and told me
in few words that I deceived myself to hope for my liberty in
exchange of Cibiur. True it was (said he) that at the first, if
promise had been kept in England, I had been long since at liberty,
but now....Cibiur was in the Governor of Dordrecht's house,
kept only to release his son." Moreover, he had order from the
Prince to keep me till he had further direction. I begged him to
solicit for this, and he promised to do it, seeming to pity my
miserable case. Bodenham maintains the contrary of all this
and whom to believe I know not, and must leave the whole to
If your honour would hasten my liberty, "it is but to send a
trumpeter to the Prince of Parma to demand of his Highness what
he will resolve of me ; for these men may not of themselves
exchange or ransom me," and if I should be ransomed they hope
to have thousands of me. I am of nothing more sorry than that
I cannot as I would yield you faithful service, but hope my daily
prayers for you will be heard.—Prison at Dunkirk, 1 November,
1586, stilo antiquo.
Postscript. By Dr. Josephus Michely, who departed in July
last I wrote to you of a matter touching Capt. Brakenbury and
one Thomas Trent, the bearer of these. He is released, friends
here being sureties that within half a year he will send the money
for his charges. I doubt not you have had conference with him,
but how you or his Excellency like of it, I know not. He is poor,
but I believe right honest, and able to do good service.
Here has been long prisoner one William Shaping, ship's master
of Margate, who, when his ransom came not, had great irons
fastened to his legs. If serving in a man of war, he might by
his skill and perfect knowledge of this coast annoy these towns ;
and hearing that the captain of a man of war of this town, with
many soldiers and sailors are prisoners at Ostend or Flushing, I
pray you to deliver to this bearer either the captain or one or two
others, sufficient to release him. Trent may safely come hither
again, by whom I may know your pleasure.
Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Flanders I. 100.]
HUDDILSTON to BURGHLEY.
[Concerning an estimate which is not complete, but of which
his lordship shall shortly receive a more correct copy. Money
paid or imprested to certain companies of horse and foot.]
Being come to Middelbourg "yesternight," he is employing
himself to the receipt of her Majesty's treasure, and the money
due from the merchants. Has this day received a letter from the
Lord General for the disbursement of money to victual the ships
and pinnaces here attending his lordship. As he is to see it done
by tomorrow or next day, he guesses his lordship's coming will
be speedy.—Middelburg, 3 November, 1586.
Add. Endd. 1¼ pp. Holland XI. 1.]
ORTELL to WALSINGHAM.
I cannot express my sorrow at the lamentable accident to
M. de Sidney, or venture to come to you, fearing to renew your
grief, and knowing well what your State and your honour and
your family on the one hand, and we ourselves on the other have
lost in a person so well-beloved and from whom so much was to be
expected. But I am assured that your wisdom and patience will
bow to God's will, and the rather that he has died in that cause.
If I can in any way do you or Madame your daughter service
with the States General or individuals, I beg you to command me.
I send you letters just received from the Admiralty of Zeeland,
in reply to those to them from your honour and others of her
Majesty's Council ; praying you to peruse them at your convenience
and to lend a helping hand in the affairs of M. Treslong,
assisting the poor gentleman with your usual kindness, that he
may at last emerge from his calamities and miseries.
Touching the coming of the deputies, Messieurs Valk and
Menyn, as also of other occurrences in Holland, I have as yet
no particulars. So far no vessels have arrived from thence,
but they are hourly expected, when I will not fail to advertise
you of all worthy your knowledge.—London, 3 November, 1586.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1½ pp. [Holland XI. 2.]
BURGOMASTERS AND ESCHEVINS OF FLUSHING to WALSINGHAM.
[A long letter of sympathy on the death of Sir Philip Sydney.]
His great humanity and gentleness, both to themselves and to
all the inhabitants of their town ; treating them so affably,
guarding them from the oppressions and outrages which war so
often brings, cause them to be infinitely indebted to his honour,
to Madame their governess, his daughter, and all his house.
Know not how to offer consolation having so much need of it
themselves ; for they are left as sheep without a shepherd, turning
hither and thither, and not being able to persuade themselves
that they will ever again have such a lord for their governor, or
knowing how they can subsist without him. Hope that, having
received such incomparable benefits from his honour without
asking for them, he will not now forsake them but will embrace
their cause the more straightly, that their cruel enemy may not
have reason to believe that he has gained his end.
Wherefore they pray him to lend his helping hand, that her
Majesty may please to provide them with a gentleman of quality
and fitting for the place. They learn that when their Governor
was leaving them to go to the war, being asked on behalf of her
Majesty, the United Provinces and this town, what should be
done in case of any disaster happening to him, he gave for answer
that in such case, he knew no lord or gentleman better qualified
or more proper to succeed him than Mr. Thomas Russell, son of
the Earl of Bedford ; making a long recital of his good qualities
and gifts. Have also heard that he had a very high opinion of
Mr. Edward Dyer. They do not wish to press his honour, but
pray him favourably to remember their town, that it may be
provided with such a governor as the interest of her Majesty
and its own welfare requires.—Flushing, 13 [qy. 14] November,
1586. Signed, A. Oillarts.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1¼ p. [Ibid. XI. 3.]
THE BURGOMASTERS &C. OF FLUSHING to DAVISON.
The favours it has pleased your honour to show to the United
Provinces in general and this town in particular encourage us
to turn to you at this time when we find ourselves in as great
perplexity as has ever happened, confident that you will help us.
There is no need to narrate the valour and noble virtues of the
Baron de Sidney our governor ; his high courage in the face of
the enemy, causing him oftentimes to regret that he was not
always there ; how by day and night he studied means to enterprise
something against the said enemy ; his humility in accommodating
himself to all, both small and great ; with what kindness
and gentleness he received all complaints made to him, and
defended the inhabitants of the town from oppressions and
outrages. We know how you esteemed him ; we know, and alas,
feel what we have lost, and have no hope of remedy, if our remedy
is to have one like unto himself. And we should greatly fear
the result, were it not that our said Lord, when leaving us for the
last time, recommended as his successor, in case anything happened
to him, M. Thomas Russel, being assured that among all
the gentlemen who followed his Excellency, none was better
qualified for this place, if it please her Majesty to commit it to
him. The name of his father, the late Earl of Bedford is pleasing
to all who make profession of religion, and the report of his
humanity and gentleness flies through all these provinces. Or
otherwise, Mr. Edward Dyer is a man of such quality and experience
as your honour well knows. Leaving the whole to your
wise discretion, and humbly praying you to use your accustomed
favour to this town, and to lend a helping hand that the place of
our late governor of noble memory may be so filled, that the
service of her Majesty and the welfare of these poor provinces and
this town may be provided for.—Flushing, 14 November, 1586.
Signed, A. Oillart.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1¼ pp. [Holland XI. 4.]
LEICESTER to the PRIVY COUNCIL.
This bearer, Dr. Bartholomew Clerck, one of her Majesty's
Council here, having important business of his own in England,
I licenced him to go over a month ago ; but the States entreating
that he and their commissioners might go over together, he has
waited till now. As however his affairs require his speedy departure,
and myself, upon important causes to be imparted to
her Majesty, meaning to repair presently into England, and the
deputies with me, I send him to give you knowledge of our "present
following."—The Hague, 4 November, 1586.
Signed. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. XI. 5.]
"Breve Remonstance du droict par la Chevallerie, Nobles et
villes d'Hollande et Westfrize de toute ancienneté usité audict
pays, pour le maintenement des franchises, preeminences, privileges
et louables usances d' icelluy pays."
"Imprimee en Flaming au temps du Gouvernement du Conte
de Leicestre et traduit en François par ung Conseilier d' Estat
du pays avec des Annotations sur quelquez articlez de la dicte
Remonstrance quotisés a la merge qui sont dignes de consideration.
Et en la derniere page se trouvera ung aultre petit discours
contenant l' origine des Estats du pays bas et leur authorité
par ung aultre Autheur."
[The first part is dated from Haerlem, Oct. 16, 1586, "By
ordinance of the States of Holland," and signed by C. de Rechtere.
The second part is dated November 15, 1586.]
MS. copy of the printed pamphlet.
Endd. by Burghley. "16 October, 1586. This is also printed
15 November, 1586" ; and by the secretary "The Remonstrance of
those of Holland and Westfriseland touching their liberties and
privileges." 14 pp. [Holland XI. 6.]
Ordinance of the Earl of Leicester for publishing and putting
into effect the articles concerning the union of the Churches.
His Excellency—being assured that all or the most part of the
States of the United Provinces, according to the zeal they have
always borne to the honour of God and the true Christian Religion,
will approve of the acts and articles drawn up by the last synod
at the Hague, and that these are already put in effect in many
places—has, upon ripe deliberation by those of the Council
thought fit, by these presents to ordain and decree that the said
acts and articles shall be put into effect throughout all the said
Provinces and inviolably observed ; And commands his said
Council of State to have this done as soon as possible. Without
prejudice however in the future to the right of each province in
particular if any should claim it upon the institution or representation
of the ministers, schoolmasters or otherwise, that each
shall remain as they were before, without being anywise prejudiced
by the same.—The Hague, 16 November, 1586. Signed by Leicester
and countersigned by Gilpin. Extract certified as correct
Endd. Fr. 1½ pp. [Ibid. XI. 7.]
Another copy of the above, in Leicester's Letter Book [S.P.F.
Archives XC. p. 29.]
PIETRO BIZARI to WALSINGHAM.
From the singular reverence which I have for long felt for the
Earl of Leicester, and for the great worth of your noble son-in-law,
Sir Philip Sydney, I have had printed an epigram and epitaph
in praise of both, and although their arguments are different, they
are contained in the same page. I send them to your honour in
testimony of my good will towards them ; and at the same time
pray you not to forget me as to the confirmation of my patent,
by the favour of her Majesty ; and when obtained, to send it to
Sir Emanuel Demitrio.—The Hague, 17 November, stilo novo.
Postscript. I learn from Germany that the protestant Princes
in the Diet lately held in Luneburg resolved to meet again towards
the spring at Spire, to renew the Schmalcaldic League and to
restore the banished of Augsburg ; to make the king of Denmark
King of the Romans, and the Elector of Saxony General of the
Endd. Italian. 1 p. [Holland XI. 8.]
Regulation by his Excellency concerning the troops, before
his departure towards England.—The Hague, 18 November, 1586.
Fr. 1 p. [S.P. Foreign Archives XC. p. 79.]
State of War, as well for the ordinary garrisons of the United
Provinces, as also in order (if need be) to be able to draw some
competent number into the field, or for other exploits of the war.
Arrete by his Excellency before his departure for England.
Total, 55,300 in garrison ; 18,500 can take the field ; 3,100
horse. The Hague, 18 November, 1586. [The original said
to be signed by the Earl.]
Fr. 12½ pp. [S.P. Foreign Archives XC., p. 80.]
Orders taken by the Earl of Leicester and the Council of State
for avoiding abuses in the musters by the captains &c. in regard
to the following points :—
1. The neglect in passing musters when ordered.
2. Allowing their men to mix with those not in the service.
3. Giving passport without good reason or insufficiently signed.
4. Taking disbanded soldiers into their companies without
5. Men quitting their companies without passport and
captains receiving the said men.
6. Receiving burghers of the garrison towns or men of foreign
nations into their companies.
7. Receiving money for the pay of their soldiers and retaining
part of it for themselves.
8. Disorders in levying contributions and "safe-guards"
from the country subject to the enemy ; hindrances of passage of
boats, merchandise &c. ; oppressions of those in the countries
under their obedience &c.
9. Further orders concerning undue hindering of boats,
10. And oppression of or exactions upon the inhabitants
living in obedience.
11. The giving of patents by chiefs or governors for the change
of garrisons unless in urgent necessity.
The Hague, 20 November, 1586. Signed by Leicester and by
Gilpin on behalf of the Council of State.
Copy. Endd. Fr. 4¼ pp. [Holland XI. 9.]
Paper endorsed by Burghley's clerk "November, 1586. Things
necessary to be considered in the office of the Muster-Master."
1. The checks being duly taken by the Muster Masters, there
will be money enough to pay the field officers and to spare ;
and it will enforce the captains to keep their companies full and
and well furnished.
2. The entertainment of the Officers of the field not perfected
and set down. The Muster-masters should have them enrolled
in their books.
3. The lists or rates of her Majesty and for the voluntary
companies to be made one.
4. The lists of her Majesty and the States to be all one, not
only for daily pay of the soldiers, but the pay of captains and
officers to be rateably set down.
5. Always provided that the Muster Masters of the English
join with the Commissioners of musters for the country, to
muster the Dutch and Scots together, to avoid deceits and for
saving of the treasure.
6. To set down the daily pay of cannoneers and their rates,
captains and officers. [Margin. Already done.]
7, 8. The same for the myoneers and pioneers.
9. "To cause only general coin to go by act or proclamation
at the same rates as they shall be received, and at one rate
throughout these Low Countries. [Margin done already.] [With
reasons given for some of the proposals.]
1½ pp. [Holland XI. 10.]
"Entertainment of the head Officers of the Army" in the
United Provinces, being a list of Officers and officials, but without
any figures attached to them.
Dated by Burghley's clerk, "November 1586." 1 p. [Ibid.
Remonstrance to his Excellency by the States General, upon
certain abuses during his government. 15 articles, with his
apostiles thereupon. Dated 20 November, 1586.
Copy. Fr. 15 pp. [Ibid. XI. 12.]
[The substance of this is printed by Bor (bk. 22 f 264 b.) with
a few variations.]
Another copy, in Leicester's Letter Book. [S.P.F. Archives
XC., p. 31.]
A brief, by Lord Burghley, of the above Remonstrance of the
States to the Earl of Leicester, with his answers.
1. "That the numbers of 1000 horse and 8000 footmen
promised by her Majesty may be filled up. That the States may
be privy to their musters and payments.
Answer. "The Earl hath had always a desire to satisfy these
points, and requireth that some persons qualified on the part of
the States may have regard thereto.
2. (fn. 2) "That according to the 23rd article, there be no forces of
strangers levied by the Earl as governor but with the consent of
the States ; for they fear that otherwise the numbers may be
more than the ordinary and extraordinary will suffice to pay
them. They require that the numbers may be reduced to such
order as the contributions may answer or else there will follow
Answer. "The Earl will reduce the numbers as required so
as there may be money provided to pay ; for which purpose he
requireth the States to enlarge their contributions.
3. That no governors of towns be named by the Governor,
but upon the presentation of three names from the States, and
that such as have been otherwise appointed be revoked.
Answer. "He will revoke such as hath been so named by
error and as touching [Colonels] Senoy and Cleerhaeghen (fn. 3) the
Earl did but continue them, as they were appointed by the
Prince of Orange.
4. "That discipline be set upon those soldiers who do now
spoil the country and villages. That no soldiers do pass up and
down but by conduct of some commissary, and that the offenders
Answer. "The governor is sorry for that is past, and desireth
that the Council of the State may give order to reform this, and
to appoint a provost of the field or a "Rowede" [i.e. Ruward].
5. (fn. 4) "That the payment of the garrisons of the frontier towns
having been smally paid these nine months may be better satisfied ;
considering that a fourth part of the contributions of Holland
and a half of Zeeland may suffice for the garrisons of those
Answer. "The States may well consider why the garrisons
have not been better paid ; and for maintenance of such an
army with its dependencies, and comparing the means that have
been given it shall appear by the accounts that the money has
been well employed. And hereafter order shall be given as far
forth as the money will bear them.
6. "That no impositions be put upon any [of] the countries
without the consent of the States ; contrary whereunto there has
been an unequal repartition made upon the towns for the levy
of chariots and pioneers, to the great surcharge of the same.
And therefore they do require reimbursement for those expences
according to the accord made for the 300,000 florins.
Answer. "The Governor never meant to charge the country
against their privileges, though he found cause of grief for lack
of chariots and pioneers. And yet he hath done nothing without
advice of the Estates, neither thinketh it reasonable to reimburse
the money paid for the chariots, having not accepted their
contributions but in case of need to be better succoured.
7. "For that it is contrary to their privileges and to the
Pacification of Ghent that none of the inhabitants should be
inquieted in justice but before their ordinary judges in the country,
against which divers have been called before the Council and
sent to others, and some also have been put to the inquisition
and disposition of unknown persons, they require the same commissions
may be revoked.
Answer. "The Governor had never meaning to impeach the
privileges and customs of the countries, but if he shall be duly
informed, will give order for the remedy thereof, and that they
shall be observed hereafter.
8. "That the public amity of the provinces may be maintained,
and not diminished as of late it hath been at Utrecht within these
four months. Therefore they require that the magistrates of
all towns may be maintained in their amity.
Answer. "This of Utrecht concerneth a matter in fact, the
decision whereof may be ended by amiable conference betwixt
the States and them of Utrecht.
9. "Where for these forty years the countries of Holland and
Utrecht have been united, and that the government of Utrecht
hath of late, before the government of the Earl, been separated
from that of Holland : they require that the Count Maurice
may be preferred to that of Utrecht, being governor of Holland.
Answer. "This likewise would be remitted to the decision
of the States General, and if there cannot be accorded, to be
remitted to the Queen's Majesty.
10. "That the inhabitants of the country may be permitted
to traffic freely to the countries allied and neutrals.
Answer. "His Excellency will remit the consideration thereof
to the Council of Estates to provide good order, so as regard may
be had rather to public than particular."
Endd. by Burghley. "Remonstrance to the Earl of Leicester
before his return, by the States." 3 pp. [Holland XI. 13.]