"A brief declaration [in schedule form] of the account of Sir
Thos. Sherley knight, treasurer, for all the checks detained to
her Majesty's use upon the remain of the captains' and servitors'
reckonings, 11 October, 1586." Marginal notes by Burghley.
Endd. 2 pp. [Ibid. XVI. f. 1.]
"A note [or schedule] of the particular remains left unpaid by
Mr. Huddilston upon the reckonings of officers and captains, 11
October 1586, as the same are exhibited unto us by the officers
and captains, with attestations under the hand of Mr. Huddilston
and his deputies, as hereafter may more particularly appear."
Endd. One long sheet. [Ibid. XVI. f. 3.]
"A brief report [in schedule from] of the account of Sir Thos.
Sherley, knight, her Majesty's treasurer at wars.
Endd. One long sheet. [Ibid. XVI. f. 4.]
CAPTAIN HARRY ASTELL to WALSINGHAM.
Acknowledges letter of June 21. His Excellency diligently
prepares to go to relieve Sluse, which the enemy does all he can
to gain, while our men neglect no means to annoy him, "so that
if we be strong enough in the field, as I hope we shall, if men do
their duties, God blessing us, your honour is to hope of a most
honourable victory"—Flushing, 2 July, 1587.
Postscript. My lord governor has just had a messenger out
of Sluse, where the town and our friends do well and we have
gained some prisoners, one of them a lieutenant.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. XVI. f. 5.]
JAMES DIGGES to his brother [THOMAS DIGGES].
Before leaving Gravenhage, according to your directions I gave
my lord of Buckhurst the supplication of the Scots, with your
apostiles, "demanding ... Sir John Norris's exceptions unto
Sir Walter Waller, and the rest of the witnesses of the abuse
reported to be offered me by Sir Henry Norris." He answered
that he had delivered the names to Sir John to be apostiled ; but
finding no likelihood of answer, I asked Sir Walter to go with me
to his honour, to justify what he had subscribed, and purge
himself of the crimes objected against him and his followers.
But my lord Buckhurst denied having heard of any such calumniators
or that the credit of any was brought in question save
Capt. Symmes and Lieut. Vinicome, the one for being condemned
in England, the other for revolting to the enemy. But
for suspicion of coinage in his house or any other matter, his
honour said it was devised to make Sir Walter Waller a party in
these questions against Sir John Norris."
On going to Utrecht on the last of June, I found the companies
much discontented for want of money and relief and exclaiming
greatly against you. I learned that Sir John Norris's troop of horse
had had a whole month's pay and three week's lendings before
the Treasurer's departure, and since one week's lending more,
whereas the cornet and others of the company affirm that they
have only had five gulden a man of their month's pay, and nothing
else. So that the band is likely to break for want, unless some
order be taken for their relief, their pay being unjustly detained
by Sir John or his officers, and the town having resolved that
none in her Majesty's pay shall have any thing but for ready
money. I have dealt with some of the best of the troop "to
persuade the rest to stand until the Lord Willoughby should
either send or come himself, which should be very shortly, who
should have the said troop as also the band of foot, whom they
should find very honourable towards them," and would see them
satisfied. Upon this hope they were stayed until Capt. Anthony
Sherley showed a letter from his father, signifying his hope
that Mr. Roper should retain the said charge, as his Excellency
had promised him it ; which makes me fear to go further with
Lord Willoughbie (according to Mr. Pooley's request) "because
my cousin Sherley averred so constantly that his lordship should
not have them." But whosoever shall have them, I will
do my best to keep them in obedience until further order be
taken. I find that the captain is much indebted to the company,
who fear to demand their due till he is gone. The clerk of the
band promised to make up their reckonings, but has departed,
leaving them marvellously discontentend and in great extremity.
Great cunning is used by the inferior officers to breed tumult,
"whereof I doubt Sir John Norris cannot plead ignorance. Some
of his troop have demanded but 10l. of their whole entertainment
since his Excellency's first coming over, but cannot get anything
at all. I have dealt with the Treasurer's deputy to give the
troop something, but he saith he hath no money, and instructions
to the contrary, fearing they will be broken and dispersed before
further direction may be sent.
Colonel Morgan's company, being two hundred strong, have
no more in weekly lendings than Capt. Lambert and other of
Sir John's favourites of a hundred and fifty and far weaker,
in proportion. The officers have had to take up money upon
the Colonel's credit, but when they crave redress, the deputy
says he has express orders to pay them no more than the rest.
Sir Philip Butler's are also in great extremity, and desire relief
or to be cassed, having neither money or credit, and for the most
part, dismounted and unarmed.
Sir Roger Williams' company proclaim that they have received
nothing, I learn that the lieutenant has been thoroughly satisfied,
but absents himself.
Lord North's troop are offered lendings for far less than their
number, and refuse to take anything unless they may have
enough to satisfy their wants. Seventy or eighty of both [Sir
John's] two companies are departed (as I hear) under colour of
his passport, and their numbers daily decrease.
Mr. Deventer's absence breeds some disorders amongst the
burghers ; his speedy return is very requisite.
I have also heard certainly that all the forces in the field have
not one surgeon amongst them, which will be the loss of many
men's lives this summer if not provided for in time. "Notwithstanding,
you shall find in the muster books no such defect,
nor oaths wanting in the books of warrants to abuse her Majesty
of a surgeon's pay. The captains for the most part keep back a
third part of their companies' weekly lendings, for that the payments
are not made . . . in presence of officers appointed."
I have charged "both the cornets" with the slanderous reports
said by Sir John Norris to have been given out by them against
me, who swear that the matter is most false, for they never so
much as thought of such a device, much less reported it ; marvelling
that there should be found six so malicious persons as would
set their hands to such a manifest untruth. "Count Morris saith
that Sir John Norris urged him to justify these speeches which he
said he had spoken." This messenger will give you further
particulars. I hope this faction is now broken, the principal
member being removed.—Utrecht, 2 July, 1587.
Copy. Endd. 4 pp. close writing. [Holland XVI. f. 7.]
RICHARD LLOYD to WALSINGHAM.
I have more to tell you than I take delight in writing, or
your honour will in reading. On Thursday, June 29, we heard
that Gueldres had been yielded to the enemy by Paten a Scotsman,
appointed commander there under Sir Martin Schenk, on the
recommendation of Count Hohenlo and the States since my lord's
departure, who knew him so well by his former treasons that
he would never admit him to any place of charge.
"In this treachery he showed himself as master of his occupation,
such cunning he used to blind the burghers . . . and such
cruelty he used upon them and some few companies that Colonel
Schenck had in the town ; for being suspected and accused of this
practice by the burghers before it came to execution, did purge
himself upon his knees, and with many tears did shadow his
villany. And after he brought the enemy into the town, showed
himself most bloody, both towards the soldiers and burgers
that offered resistance. Whereof another town called Wachtersdonck
being advised, put themselves presently into arms, and
ran with great fury upon a company of Scots that were garrisoned
there, whereof they slew many and thrust the rest out of the town."
Gueldres was the only place of strength, and the best furnished
and defended in all that quarter, and so the sequel will be most
dangerous, whatever care is taken.
Friday the 30th, his Excellency, accompanied by Count
Maurice, the lord Admiral, lord Wentworth etc., went to Bergen
op Zom, to view the place, give order for the placing of the bands
newly come over into garrisons, and appoint the old trained
companies for the field. On Saturday he returned towards
Middelburghe, but the wind being contrary, lay all night upon
the water. Sunday, he dined at Middelburghe, and there went
on board again to view Bierflete, an island over against Cadsant,
where the enemy have some horse and foot. That night he lay
at anchor, and next day came back to Middelburghe, to hasten
"But I fear greatly, and so I am certainly informed of sundry
captains, English and Dutch, that his Excellency shall come far
short of the numbers he had thought to have found here to bring
into the field for the performance of this present exploit," for
I believe he cannot make above 600 horse, and far under 3000
footmen, while "it is certainly known that the Duke of Parma
doth draw all the forces he possible may out of all garrisons to
bring hither ; as the especial place he must maintain with honour
or abandon with shame."
Lord Buckhurst has come to Middelburghe, but I believe,
after his first greeting has not spoken with my lord. This is a
thing too high for me to deal in, and therefore I will pass with
silence what the people do boldly speak.
Of Sir John Norreis and Mr. Wilkes I can say nothing for where
they be and whither they go none know ; but all marvel at their
behaviour, and many make bold speeches, wondering how they
dare depart hence before they have spoken with her Majesty's
lieutenant. I conceal many things "in respect that littera
scripta manet" which I would tell you by word of mouth, but am
sure you will as much keep me from blame as I do discharge my
duty with truth and affection.
My lord Admiral has accompanied his Excellency everywhere,
"and all matters have been familiar to his eye and ear."
The brave men in the Scluse will defend it so long as men and
means will serve, and the enemy will use all policy and force
to carry it with expedition, before aid can be made ready. His
Excellency has written to them and had letters from Sir Roger
Williams and Mr. Grunevelt telling him of the state of the town
and their resolution.—Middelburgh, 2 July, 1587.
Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Holland XVI. f. 10.]
JAN WYCHGAERDE to WALSINGHAM.
This is in brief, as two days ago I apprised your honour at
large of all that was happening. I am sorry that I have not been
able to come sooner, but in making the passage, the ship was
taken by a man of war having the King of Navarre's commission,
and which robbed me and all the rest, because I was crossing in
a French ship. So we were all plundered and landed at Boulogne.
I found besides, that one cannot come from Dixmude to Bruges
save with a great convoy of soldiers. [Relates the attack on the
convoy by those of Ostend, as in his letter of June 30, above.]
I have yet no tidings from Bruges that all is ready [for the
assault on Sluys]. Four days ago the great guns were not all
in position, but here it is said that within two or four days they
will begin shooting, to storm it. News has come hither that the
Spaniards resolved three days ago to scale the great fort, but
that they only thrust their head in and were beaten off, a part,
moreover being left behind. God grant this last may be so, and
that every night there may be left many dead. More are killed
by night than by day, because the Spaniards then expose themselves
more, in order to make their approaches.
Furthermore, there arrived here yesterday tidings that
Montigny, i.e. the Marquis de Renty and Admiral of the Sea, is
wounded. Whether this is true cannot certainly be known.
The said Montigny governed in the place of Lamotte, who was
long ago shot and lies at Bruges to recover. These are the two
chief lords of the camp next to the Prince, and governed on the
dyke, where they dominated the town, for nowhere did they do
so more than on the dyke that comes from Bruges to Dam[me],
and at no place had they more ready access to it, so near as they
A messenger or post has come hither, bringing for sure
tidings that the troop of ordynansy ought to be speedily at the
camp ; he said it was not more than 400 strong, and the horses
hastily collected. Those here say five or six hundred, but it is
always the custom of the Spaniards to say they are more by half
than they are ; just as they also say of the camp that it is ten or
twelve thousand strong, and yet it is not more than five thousand.
I have not yet learned whether the three or four thousand men,
or three or four regiments who were to come into the camp,
have arrived, but when I do, will apprise you thereof. If you
wish me to go again to the camp, I will gladly do so. You might
let me know your wishes by a good secret friend.
I think it would be very important to get into the town of
Sluys. I expect I could do so very well at night by swimming
across the water, provided those in the town did not shoot ; but
the need should be great.
It is said here on all hands that my lord of Leicester, with my
lord Admiral and yet another lord, have gone over by Zeeland
to relieve Sluys. This must be done in very good order, for the
Spaniards (so it is said) are preparing themselves to meet the
emergency. There are two or three places at which they might
arrive, for the camp is not very strong, especially if one relief
should come by water or from the sea into the havens or river ;
so they must have a great many small skiffs and boats, to hold
twenty, thirty or forty men, and which, with the setting in of the
tide, might row furiously against the two war boats and five
galleys or smacks that lie in the channel, from where the counterscarp
is to where the water becomes shallow. These boats and
galleys lie in the deep water, where there is no counterscarp,
and so, with a furious attack, the ships might be mastered and
ropes of the anchors cut, and so with the influx or rising of the
tide, they might drift close to the town. On each of the two
boats they have four pieces [of ordnance], and on each of the five
galleys two pieces, to defend themselves, so that it is better to
operate with many small boats than with great ships, for there
would confront the ships on land, along the haven, eight or ten
great and powerful pieces ; and these would not be so well able
to shoot on small skiffs or rowing boats. For they should come
scattered, and in such wise the ships might be mastered and
driven towards the town. But the men would need to be very
stout and well disciplined, for though there are not more than
forty or fifty men on board, as soon as the Spaniards saw aught
coming, they would send many more soldiers aboard them, and
might also land parties at the same time at three or four places,
for they are not so strong as formerly.
Their greatest and chiefest strength is that they keep such good
order, and all the Prince's best people are there, and on whom he
most relies ; wherefore, if relief is to come, they must needs be
very stout men.
As for the thirty bridges that are being made or are made,
some say that they are for storming, others, in order to lay a
bridge over the haven or river, upon ships or flat-bottomed boats,
thereby to close the haven. In my opinion, they are for making
a bridge, for they are being made, on both sides, shot-proof to
the height of a man. As I understand, the Spaniards are in
great dread lest relief should come ; for they know all that happens
in England, Holland, Zeeland and everywhere, from those whom
the Prince has in all parts. From Ostend people come daily that
say such [relief] is to come, whatever happens, and even some
Englishmen give full warning, so that it is said here that the Prince
knows every secret before it is put in practice. That is a great
mistake. [Re-iterates the advantage of the relief boats coming
The Spaniards themselves praise those in the town as good
soldiers, because they bear themselves so stoutly. Some of them
also say that they believe those in Sluys are making a new fort
or trench. This is probably because from without they have seen
some high houses or chimneys thrown down. The Spaniards think
they are making a countervest and so steps are being taken for placing
the great artillery in order to fire upon the town. It is put beside
the dyke which comes from Bruges, and they will fire between
the great fort and the gate, on a place where the wall is low.
Three days have passed and the firing has not yet begun, but they
say here that it will begin in two or four days. In my opinion,
the delay will be longer, for I do not think they will storm or make
an assault until they have more men in camp. At present, I
have no better news to write than that there is great dearth and
poverty in the camp. The man whom you appointed to remain
here is now about to return, leaving his servant, in case there
should be anything of urgency. [Apology for writing in Flemish,
lamentations over the loss of his money and goods in the flyboat
taken by Captain "Daerck's" ship, and humble prayers for his
honour's aid in the matter.]
For such matters as your honour shall command me, I shall
adventure my life, and as I am a German born, though of a
Hanse town, I hope you will be the more ready to help me to
recover my losses. I have forgotten to tell you that the Spaniards
have moved the beacons or signs in the river or haven of Sluys,
and have caused them to be set up on the sandbanks, in order
that ships coming in for the relief of Sluys may run on the sandbanks,
and there be stranded. So that only such ships should
come as have good and skilful pilots aboard, otherwise they would
be misled and cause the ruin of all the ships. [On the advantage
of using small boats, the need for very good order, and the
Spaniard's strict discipline, as in previous letter.]
If the relief is ready, the sooner it comes the better, for the
Spaniards lie so close to the town with their forts that one could
from them throw a stone into it, and day and night they work
very diligently to prepare to assault the town. But as amongst
those within there is no treachery or discord, and they mean to
hold together, they should not be taken for a month yet, or more.
On divers occasions lately they have kindled a fire outside the
castle. What this may mean I know not. [Supposed lack of
powder, as before.] Even firing only firelocks and muskets, they
despatch many men, so that hitherto they have defended themselves
very stoutly, as the Spaniards themselves declare.
Signed. Add. in Spanish. Flemish. [Flanders I. f. 293.]
LEICESTER to WALSINGHAM.
"Let me crave pardon for not writing at large at this time.
What my leisure is, this good lord [the lord Admiral] can tell
you, whose company, I could not for ten thousand pounds have
spared. I would God it might have been spared but ten days
longer, by when I trust he should have brought you good tidings ;
and yet all must rest upon her Majesty's forces. I am not like
to have above 2000 of these States' companies. Our soldiers
are . . . the fairest and handsomest companies that ever I saw
in my life, and the willingest men. Our old bands be meetly
well. The treasure that came with Sir Tho. Sherley, he tells me,
is almost all gone, not above 4000l. left, and yet great debts
owing. Sir John Norris and Mr. Wilkes have served me well, but
rather her Majesty. They are gone away without once speaking
or sending to me. If you think meet to bear with such indignities,
specially to her Majesty, considering my place both here [and]
at home, I pray God the like be offered to those that shall favour
it. I think the like hath not been offered to any man of such as
have charge and ought, for her Majesty's service, at least to
deliver themselves otherwise than so contemptuously. I have
written to her Majesty and to my lords of it, and I trust there
will be some consideration had of me herein.
"Even as I had written this much there is word brought me of
a strange part played by some of the States at Delph yesterday.
They heard that I had sent Junyus, my secretary to Snoy into
North Holland, which was true, and I had written a letter to
him to impart to some of my friends. This letter they have taken
perforce from him, and committed first my man to prison, which
I think was never durst to be attempted before, and puts me past
my patience. For either I must suffer this, to my shame, or
revenge it to their utter danger, for I know I can with a word
make them all smart for it.
"Gueldres was lost the day before my arrival, given up by
Patent the Scottish man, commended thither by the Count
Hollock, and hath been wholly at his direction . . . yet see the
good nature of Norryce and Wilkes ; as soon as they heard of
this, reported to the States that this Patent was a colonel of my
preference, to make the people to hate me, knowing they imputed
the matter before to the Count Hollock, for in truth he was his
follower and appointed by him to that place ; indeed I remember
at coming away, Mr. Wilkes himself brought me Patent's name
set down by the Council of State to be a colonel of the Scots'
companies . . . and told me also that he would be a good bridle
to Bawford [Balfour] (fn. 1) ; since which I never heard any thing
that good was of Patent, but that he attended wholly upon others
and no way upon me, and therefore lewdly and knavishly done
of Wilkes to report this to the States, finding the matter justly
laid to Hollock . . . for I protest before God, I knew no more of
his placing there than you did. And how can I serve her Majesty
here if those injuries be offered me . . . So, being utterly weary,
and recommending my unquiet state to your care, I will end."—
Postscript.—"Now shall I find the want of my lord Admiral's
Holograph. Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Holland XVI., f. 12.]
THE COUNCIL OF STATE to HER MAJESTY.
Thanking her for having sent thither Doctor Clerck, they had
hoped he would have continued longer, yet as it has pleased her
now to recall him, they must humbly acquiesce therein.—Middebourg,
14 July, 1587. Signed by Leoninus, president, and Chris.
Add. Endd. Fr. ¾ p. [Ibid. XVI. f. 14.]
VALENTINE DE PARDIEU, SIEUR DE LA MOTTE, to MAISTRE
PAUL . . . . at Gravelines.
Desiring him to come with all speed, for a reason to be
declared on his arrival, calling at Ekelsbergh to see if there are
any letters for him, and if so to bring them.—Bruges, 14 July,
Holograph. Add. [but the surname torn away]. French. ¼ p.
[Flanders I. f. 299]
THOMAS, LORD BURGH to BURGHLEY.
There has lately been great disorder "under my government"
in Capt. Sherley's company, which had guard of the forts.
"Sir John Norris, in passing to my lord Willoughby the companies
of infantry which he commanded as Colonel-general
delivered Capt. Sherley's amongst the rest. And for that the forces
to be employed to service were to be assembled at 'Berghenzone'
I thought to convert the other, and to remove this company,
that they might obey the direction of my lord Willoughby . . . and
to receive another, being not passed in his list ; the rather . . . for
that I have ever found them most mutinous, though not in so
dangerous degree as at this time ; for being by me commanded
to rise, and directed by Sir John Norris to 'Berghenzone,' they
put themselves in arms, drew up their bridge, and would not obey
farther than that they might be paid nine month's pay. Presently
thereupon I went myself and demanded what had moved them
to this insolency ; persuaded them to remember that they
attempted a thing in the nature of a rebellion, and that the
success would be the loss of their lives ; and that if they would
conform themselves, I would rather impute it to error than
condemn it as a wilful outrage. They answered they would have
their due." I told them they should be satisfied when the
treasure was come over, and they must be contented to have
it when others had. Lastly I said I was sure there were some
honest among them, and urged them to quit the rest and submit
to authority ; but they were all resolved to live or die in their
cause. Hereupon I beset them with guards so that they should
get no victuals, and when they wished to compound, in order to
come forth, told them I would admit no compositions ; "for it
was not a matter to be won from enemies, who leave such places
on terms, but to be continued in discipline, as over such as ought
to be her Majesty's subjects, who being now become rebellious,
I would execute according to their offence. So by compulsion
they submitted, and by due examination the chief instruments
were discovered, and to the number of four made examples to
You will hear further from Sir John Norris and Mr. Wilkes,
who were eye witnesses, and by whose advice the matter was
better proceeded in.
"I hope her Majesty's commission to me be not abridged by
any authority here, which, if it were, might be dangerous to the
place . . . and hazardous to me."—Briell, 5 July.
Add. Endd. Seal of arms. 1½ pp. [Holland XVI. f. 16.]
LEICESTER to the QUEEN.
"My most dear lady, as you have commanded me, so am I
bold to trouble yourself with all things that may concern your
affairs or 'my none' poor self ; to whom it has pleased your
Majesty to make promise to deal graciously and favourably in
my absence, and because I have none to trust upon but your own
mere goodness, and for your service ; otherwise utterly against
my heart to leave your presence for a most perilous and most
crooked voyage. I do presume the more . . . as occasion shall
be offered, to fly always to the throne of your grace."
In my last letters by the Lord Admiral I advertised you of all
things so far as I then knew them. I cannot yet inform you of
the state of these countries, but I find daily to my great grief
in what division and altered sort all things are here, and
"especially that all almost hath grown by the indiscreet or rather
malicious manner of proceedings of your own instruments, who
have left behind them as well matters of shame and reproof to
themselves as no small hindrance to all the good service in hand."
I would rather leave particularities to more indifferent persons,
but trust that it already plainly appears "that I have had the
greatest wrong done me . . . by such as your Majesty committed
the dealing of [things] unto . . . My lord of Buckhurst utterly
refused to treat with me in any matter before he came to your
presence . . . . and charged me to be the cause of a sharp letter
you wrote unto him, and that all the matter contained therin was
such as I had also written unto him of," to which I answered
"that he knew well enough that the matter of your Majesty's
letter could not proceed from any information of mine ; for the
matter of mine own grew out of his own, both to myself and my
lords of the Council ; but ambassador like, or rather Emperor
like . . . I never found my lord's courage before like his choler
now, after all which, in the end he was contented for some matters
of your service I should ask him some questions, which I did in
as quiet sort as might be. They were but few, and the answers
were not such as I think will give your Majesty satisfaction,
neither in troth can I learn that those matters were so laboured
to bring to your desired effect as other of less moment . . . I will
assure you, that my lord hath not used or followed the advice
of any of those honest, wise and faithful men whom I know were
and are most affectionate to your Majesty and the true service
of these countries, but with such as are most 'impugnant' to
your service and your whole nation, and who be wholly and
altogether at the devotion of Count Hollock and Morryce and the
chief workers . . . to bring the authority to them and the only
searchers and devisers of the lewd manner of proceeding against me
. . . and of all others most perverse to the peace. For all the rest,
whom I know to be most assured to your Majesty, and whom I did
so recommend to my lord, they have protested unto me that my
lord made no reckoning of them ; that they had faithfully advised
him according to their knowledge in all things, but they could
never perceive that he either regarded them or their advice ;
only such as Dr. Clerk commended to him, such he would confer
and allow, specially any that would show to mislike of me. As
Paul Buyes was in all things—whatsoever they will say to your
Majesty—a principal counsellor, one Roda and one Floristyne,
a banished man of Utrecht, and divers others . . . the worst and
most pernicious men in all this state. Your faithful man Snoy
never accounted of, but contrarywise greatly discouraged, and
if I had not come when I did, he had been gone by a very lewd
practice. Old Meddykyrk, as wise and grave a counsellor as
any here, and that offered my lord all his service and travail,
would no way use him ; him of Utryckt also, called Deventer,
whose letter your Majesty liked so well, and is governor there,
and as faithful a servant to your Majesty as any in all these
provinces, my lord would not use him but for a little show at
first, but hath called him bankrupt and such like words behind
his back, and others 'moe' I omit here to name ; . . . and all to
run with the other sway of those of the States who have been
and are most backward towards your Majesty. And so good a
pacification did my lord make, as where the Count Hollock, before
his arrival, did write very kind letters unto me, since his coming
he is now so altered as albeit I wrote unto him and sent him a
courteous message, he flatly answered the messenger . . . that he
would not serve under me, which if he continue, will of itself
make a marvellous business here ; his chiefest matter now being
that I should be privy and consenting to Sir Edward Norryce'
cartel . . . which my lord of Buckhurst might easily have satisfied ;
and Sir John Norryce doth know I threatened to lay his brother
in prison for it, but neither in this nor in anything else that
concerned me, though there were plain acts in Council left in
writing to answer for me and to discharge me, they would not
so much as call for them. My lord saith he knew not of them,
a simple answer, knowing that he did in England and here also,
and so commanded as he was by your Majesty ; and herein also
is Mr. Wilkes' fault inexcusable.
"But I trouble your Majesty too long, and I am sorry that I
am not able to satisfy you presently no other wise in the greatest
matters of this state. I fear it will be found weak every way.
You have two honest men here as I think ; and him that you
feared to be dull, your Majesty will hear that these men will find
him quick enough and more sufficient than any that came yet
and well spoken, as he is well-languaged. I trust your Majesty
doth not forget the strange usage of Mr. Wilkes ; a thing I think
never used before by any minister in his place. He will say that
my lord of Buckhurst did send him with his packet, but I hope
that will be taken for no reasonable answer, when neither of
them had that authority, either the one to send or the other
to go, being here your councillor, and having the chief place in
dealing in all the affairs in this long time of my absence, placed
by me, and to be discharged . . . [only] upon your Majesty's
revocation . . . Between him and my lord I remain utterly
without any knowledge of all matters passed here, and there
will be many things . . . wherein we shall have need to
have had his knowledge . . . My hope is you will not forget
the manner wherein the credit of your poor minister is so touched.
I think the least [sic] would be to send him again to attend the
declaration of his negotiation here for I know how greatly this
dealing hath purged me. But why should I say so much to so
gracious a mistress, but even to refer all to her own princely
consideration.—Middelburg, 7 July.
Postscript.—"I had almost forgotten to let your Majesty
understand how Sir Jo. Norryce hath used many persuasions to
have drawn away divers captains, but could get none but two of
his own men ; and hath taken as many officers of bands as he
could. He hath also taken forty of his best horses away, and left
his band wholly unfurnished, for which forty, he hath received
in ready money 800l. of your Majesty ; and seeing he hath the
horses, reason you have the money again ; for he received for
his band 2000l. of yours, and the captains be in your mercy for
their going away, being in your pay. They will allege his passport
and my lord Buckhurst, but neither had never that authority,
for so had then all the captains, if that had served, or they would
"As soon as I have dealt with the States, I will send one of
purpose to your Majesty. . . . Pardon my blotted letter, for in
truth my hand will not bear long writing."
Holograph. 3 pp. of very small, neat writing. There are no
blots but one sentence is erased.
Endd. In a hand of probably the later part of Chas. II.'s reign.
"The contents of this letter are set forth more at large in the
Cabala. Vide the charge of answers of the Earl of Leicester and
Lord Buckhurst etc." (fn. 2)
[Holland XVI. f. 18.]
LORD ADMIRAL HOWARD to WALSINGHAM.
Forgot when with him to say that my lord [of Leicester] requires
to have sent him with all speed the following :—great ordnance
for Bergen Ap Some ; 2000 pikes, 1000 bills and 100 dozen spades
and shovels. Prays that they may be sent at once.—"The
Court, this Friday."
Holograph. Add. Endd. 8 July. 1 p. [Ibid. XVI. f. 20.]
JAMES DIGGES to HIS BROTHER [THOMAS DIGGES].
I received yours of the 7th of July the same day that the old
companies here in garrison marched out of the town. You willed
me to muster Sir John Norris' late companies of horse and foot,
but his foot marched forth with the rest of the old crew before
receipt of your letters, who were only 96 strong, besides 16 or 18
stragglers, who were sent after them ; and six or eight hurt and
sick who remained behind ; so that those serviceable are not
above 110 "of the refuse and worst sort of his band, disfurnished
. . . greatly discontented and hardly kept from mutiny, through
former hard usage and want of present money." I sent to the
officers of the horse company to assemble the troop for muster,
to which they gave all the impediments that might be, and
demanded my authority, which showed, the cornet, in name of
the rest utterly refused to be mustered. Being anxious to dispatch
what were serviceable I called a review, when they brought only
fourteen serviceable horses, avowing that there were but few,
and what there were would not be suffered to come out of the
stables without present payment ; it being very strange that 130
men and horse at the least should be so suddenly dispersed without
passport or order from his Excellency ; "and the rather that Sir
John received his revocation after his Excellency's arrival, so
his own passport was not available.
The officers of the company seek utterly to deface the troop ;
the company exclaim for their reckonings, which the clerk has
delayed ever since my coming here ; the troop is disfurnished
by secret and cunning devices ; for notwithstanding proclamation
made that none should depart until they had orders from his
Excellency, there are 30 horse and men of the best departed by
Sir John's former passport ; ten gone to the leaguer, twelve or
fourteen into other companies, and the thirty or forty remaining
must have some reasonable satisfaction, or it will be as small
charge to levy a new company as to draw them all together.
At my first coming, they rejoiced they were assigned to Lord
Willoughbie, but since, they have been inveigled to the contrary.
This afternoon they are to come together to find out how many
remain and where the rest are gone, whereof I will write later.
This disobedience and disorder is intolerable and should be
punished for example. Four or five of the new supplies, thoroughly
armed, shall be sent away in a few days, as soon as the rest are
I have had little time for the books, but will finish them as
soon as possible. Sir Philip Butler's company are very weak,
few of them having horses. Unless they be supplied, it were
better to cass them or join them to another troop.—Utrecht, 8
Copy. Endd. 2 pp. closely written. [Holland XVI. f. 22.]
[BERTRAND] COMBES to WALSINGHAM.
Is very sorry that he has not been able to execute Lord
Buchol's commandment to go himself with the dispatch which
he now sends. The day that he reached Flushing, the lord of
Leicester desired him to remain, in order to send him, to-morrow,
to the Landgrave of Hesse and to Prince Casimir. Being there,
he will not fail to write of what passes in Germany, and will
employ himself as ever in his honour's service, notwithstanding
the small recompense he has had for past services.
This noble bearer will tell him of the coming of his Excellency.
If the siege of the Escluse is raised, it will be a greater victory
than can be imagined, and will draw to her Majesty the hearts
of all the honest people here.—Middelburg, 8 July, 1587.
Signed. Add. Endd. with same date. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid.
XVI. f. 24.]