||“The Causes that moved the Lord Willoughby … to engage himself in Ostend; with such other matters as his Lordship hath required James Digges to inform her Majesty's honourable Privy Council.”|
For his repair to Ostend, he prays her Majesty to see Sir John Conway's letter, now in his servant Colman's hands, averring that the town was not tenable four hours, or four days at most.
Immediately after which, he received intelligence from her Majesty's Commissioners of the enemy's intention for the place; the approach of the camp to within 2 miles of it, and their horse scouts “making their stand in the eye of the town.”
He therefore judged it not fit to leave the town until some good course was taken, and therefore gave order for bringing further forces thither.
But if the enemy should only set down part of his forces before it, having great numbers dispersed in Brabant etc., should attempt Berghen up Zome, or some other place, her Majesty's are too small to defend two places at once; whereof he prays that consideration may be had, and that there may be sent over victuals for Ostend, and also two or three hoys loading of bavins for the fortification; some supply of bands for assurance of the towns from which 700 men are drawn to Ostend, and 300 more for this town, to supply the sick and unserviceable of the bands already there.
Endd. with date. 1¼ pp. [Ibid. f. 62.]
||Sir William Russell to Burghley.|
Recommending Mr. Davieson, their preacher, a very honest and well-disposed man, who by reason of the long want of pay in the garrison hath had small maintenance, to receive such entertainment as is now due to him at the Treasurer's hands.—Vlissing, 6 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal of arms. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 64.]
||Letters of credence for D. Sistus a Dehema and Godtschalck Hiddema, deputies of Friesland, with full power to repair without delay to her Majesty, or to her commissioners, and, according to the instruction given to them, to treat with the Prince of Parma in the name of the King of Spain or with his commissioners, and to take such good resolution as they shall find befitting for a good Christian peace, with confirmation of true religion and maintenance of the ancient privileges, treaties, rights, and customs of their country.—Leeuvarde, 6 June, '88.|
Copy. French. Endd. 1¾ pp. [Holland XXIV. f. 66.]
||Henry Kyllygrew to [Burghley].|
Has dealt with M. d'Aldegonde, the Pensionary of this town, (of whom he had the traiterous libel enclosed in the packet to his lordship) and with Bruin, her Majesty's victualler, “who hath good acquaintance in Antwerp by reason of his' wife”—to learn where the said libel was printed, by whom it was dispersed abroad, and whether they can procure any more copies. Knows already from the Pensionary “that it is printed in Antwerp by order from the Duke, but secretly, and is to be spread abroad among the fugitive English and Irish”; and has desired him to write to the man at Antwerp who sent him the book, to see if he can describe the stature, countenance etc. of those who receive these books and give them abroad in England.
Signed. Endd. by Burghley's clerk. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 68.]
||Cobham to Walsingham.|
We have prayed for a resolute answer from the duke touching the cessation and also for a commission from the duke to the commissioners. He is going to Bruges and has promised to bring us answer, when we mean to enter into the principal points.
We are instructed to consider what conditions might be agreeable to the States, and that some wise and well affected persons from them should inform us. We hear of none such and do not know how we may proceed for them. It were necessary we were informed how far we may enter into a treaty, with respect to former accords, if the States will not. The inequality of the cessation is such as I do not see what good her Majesty or the realm may have by it. For the forbearing of any hostility to the four towns her Majesty must forbear to annoy all the places in the Low Countries, so that they may invade England either by themselves or with the Spanish fleet. Duncke, Neuport etc. may rob and spoil her subjects and she may not withstand it, as shown in a draft by Dr. Rogers, who hath in all these matters of treaties done very good offices.
There wanted no good acceptation of Sig. Chaympeny coming unto me, only the narrowness of my door and the straitness of my stairs was the stay thereof. Of Richardot never heard word. From Calais I am advised that the causes between the French king and the Duke of Guise is stayed until the 15 August. In the mean time there shall be an assembly of the States at Blois. By Sprytwell I send you the cipher; I hope that it is come to your hands.
I am informed that the lord chief baron is a suitor to her Majesty to have the circuit of Kent. I heartily pray you, for our country's sake that you will be a means to stay it. Except he carried a revenging mind he would never seek it.—Burborow, 6 June, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1⅓ pp. [Flanders IV. f. 25.]
||Cobham to Burghley.|
[On the dispute about the cessation.] Richardot has gone to Bruges and on his return they may enter upon the principal points. Have conferred together about their instructions, and desire to have it specified what conditions would be considered as agreeable to the States, and who the wise and well affected persons of the States they are to consult should be, when they are to come and how they are to be dealt with. Also for instructions as to their use of former accords. [On the inequality of the terms of cessation proposed.]
“The informer of my refusal to speak with Sig. Champeny mistook it. He sent me one morning a servant to give me the bon jour and said that he would come to visit me. I send him thanks and was sorry my door and stairs were so strait and low that he could not come in, by reason of his chair that he is carried in; myself am forced to stoop and go sidelong. Of the President Richardot I never heard word.” [Report about K. of France and D. of Guise and meeting of the Estates.]—Burborow, 6 June, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 12/3 pp. [Ibid. f. 27.]
||P. Ortell to Burghley.|
Has been twice at court to deliver the enclosed (fn. 1) and beseech his furtherance to her Majesty for speedy resolution; but “seeing that time did not serve,” he sends them to him, praying him “to have the same, at the first convenient leisure, in favourable remembrance.” Offers condolences on the loss of his daughter, the Countess of Oxford.”—London, 7 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. English. ½ p. [Holland XXIV. f. 69.]
||Lord Wyllughby to Burghley.|
“Finding my letters agreeable unto your lordship beyond their worth … though I wrote lately by my servant Coleman, I would not let pass this bearer. The politic state of this country consisted in the perfect establishing the Council of State, and ‘atoning’ of the places altered and mutinied.” The first you will best understand by the conditions offered by the States to the Council and our exceptions thereto; (sent with this packet). “As for the places mutined, there be two evils that make me despair of a good conclusion, especially for ‘Gertruinbergh.’ The first is the want of the country, which is greater than appeareth; the other is careless delaying, apparent enough in all their doing, and most especially in these money actions.
“Our martial affairs stands upon the enemy's attempts and our defence, very weak; the States' people being all discontented, and the few numbers we have so tied to garrisons as we can hardly shift them upon extremities from one place to another as we proved the last day when the enemy presented before Ostend; and are like to prove now he is risen to some other place; for he is strong enough to attempt two, and we unable to defend one; such a difficulty is made by governors to give supplies; and I find no forces to spare or borrow of but those that are not frontier to the enemy; and they being cautionary places, the commanders take no knowledge of me; and if they did, yet surely I would be loth to deal with them. This winter while no enemy assailed us, we did well enough, but now, if a general may not be able to draw, of the 5000 appointed by the contract some 2000 at least to a head, he shall hardly be able to take times at advantage for the succouring of places…. If Sluce had been relieved in time, neither had it been so hard as it was afterwards, nor the enemy possessed of it now. In these matters of war … there must be some confidence and trust above others conferred on him that should command others; for it is impossible that those that are absent can upon all instances and sudden accidents of war give those necessary directions that a simple or mean man that is present may do. A familiar example I may give you that fell out at Ostend. The enemy presenting there, Sir John Conway protesting that he could not defend the town with a thousand men not four hours against 3000; and that he would be one of 3000 should so win it rather than of the 1000 to defend it; the speech being public at a Council table, before all the captains and chief men of war, it was concluded by a general consent that if he would come to set amongst them, and use their endeavours and advice—a thing they said he seldom or never used (though it were and in truth is a custom used amongst the most honourable men of war … in most actions wherein their reputations and lives are indifferently engaged) that then they would so travail to fortify the town (which he had never gone about) that they would defend it with the numbers they had against the Duke of Parma's camp till more supplies might in any reasonable time be put in. Hereupon I concluded with the Council and my assistants to give order that Sir John Conway should call a Council of War, and by their advice do all things that might be the best for the service. This satisfied the captains … and gave no little assurance to the place….
“Whilst matters were left in this state letters were directed by Sir Edward Norreys, which let all loose again. Besides, her Majesty commands me to deal with the States to re-establish and re-authorize him Governor; a matter … so different from the States' humour as will never be compassed, by any likelihood I can see; they charge him with so many bad matters. Now to oppose both States and men of war that can say somewhat probable for themselves, I leave it to your lordship and those that are to direct me, what is to be done … yet the season to displease those two sorts without good grounds is not the course which my simple capacity can conceive for the best.”
Thus, having troubled your lordship with the politics and martial state of this country, I will end with a third; i.e. her Majesty's treasure, which you know best of all. Meredith, the Treasurer's man, tells me that the Privy seal was for 18,000l., but he brought over but 14,000l. I beseech you to think of what this will mean to us in the prime season of the war and to remember us while there is time, “that I may be discharged and the poor soldiers suffer not lack of their imprests.”—Middleburg, 7 June.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 3¾ pp. [Holland XXIV. f. 71.]
||Sir James Croft to Burghley.|
Is emboldened to resume his proceedings to further the great cause which has received some hindrance from suggestions made against him. In spite of the warlike preparations he conjectures that necessity forces even the greatest prince living to desire and seek peace; peace being most necessary to maintain the prosperity of the K. of Spain's dominions, and there is no so great impediment as to have England for enemy, whereby it will come to pass that the whole course of his trades will be impeached, though not without great loss and hindrance to the English.
The duke, being a man of grave judgment must know that the Queen had great reason to take this war in hand until it might appear what mind the king retained for peace, whose inclination now seems apparent in that the duke hath showed himself a mediator and hath sought it by many means. Another argument is their keeping this great and chargeable army idle so long. One of the commissioners had said to Lord Derby and himself that they had sufficient forces to have taken Ostend before this, but they abstained for grave and considerate respects.
At the last conference he attended the difference was about the cessation of arms in which he tried to draw them to a reasonable conformity. When Richardot returns from the duke hopes to enter into the body of the matter. The chief point will be the assurance to be given by them for the queen's security, for which refers him to the 12th note of the speeches between them and Croft at Bruges, to which, for the most part they assented and so it may be presumed they will not require to have the cautionary towns until the point of assurance is agreed and fully performed.
As this holding aloof of Holland and Zeeland may be a great impediment, some persons of discretion should be employed to win them thereto, and does not doubt of their good conformity therein as may appear by the enclosed copy of a letter from Lord Willoughbie, confirmed by relations made by others that the States have chosen ambassadors to be employed hither as soon as they find the queen's determination therein. Against their coming it were not amiss the commissioners repaired to some more convenient place for which Berghes St. Wynnoxe is meetest, unless they may go to Antwerp.
His hope of success in the treaty makes him wish some project were set down touching the expense and charge demandable on the Queen's behalf. For merchants' causes, common intercourse, reprisages etc. may probably be ended by commissioners of the other side going over to England.
Asks Burghley to signify his opinion to Dr. Dale touching the strange course he taketh with Croft, not making him privy to any letters either received or sent, concerning this cause.—Borboroughe, 7 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. 2½ pp. [Flanders IV. f. 29.]
Lord Willoughby to Mr. Controller.
The state of things uncertain, the people depending only upon the conclusions as shall come from the commissioners. The re-establishment of the Council of State, the confirmity of them of Zeeland to the queen's propositions and the tractability of the Count himself give hope that all things will succeed well. Asks for information of the course of proceedings.—Ostend, last of May, 1588.
Copy, with note that the report of the messenger who brought it was that Dordreigh, Utrick and Gyttingburg would also depend upon her Majesty.
1 p. [Ibid. f. 31.]
||The Commissioners to the Privy Council.|
Upon the 2nd inst. Lord Henry Seamer did ride the whole day before Graveling with 32 ships of H.M.'s navy, which brought a marvellous great terror to all this coast. In the afternoon the king's commissioners rode to see them and in the evening the Admiral gave them such a salvo that we suppose they have no cause to think we doubt their ships of war at Dunkirk or elsewhere in the Low Countries, but that they have now cause to desire the cessation more than we. The day following they sent us a writing touching the cessation, and the next day we sent an answer, both enclosed. Having received H.M.'s letter of the 2nd we appointed a meeting for the 5th. At which time we brought in Morris to affirm Richardot's statement that the cessation should be the first thing granted, and showed two letters of de Loo to that purpose, and a note of Mr. Comptroller on the same. We opened further upon the inequality of the cessation which they required … and said it was required that the cessation should be set down in writing whereby it would appear that it was equal verbatim, and showed her Majesty's letters of April last to her governors in the Country, which we kept in our hands, sealed, to be sent at such time as they should grant the cessation in the form last declared. Touching this point we ask you lps. to remember that we delivered this project merely to show the inequality of the first project delivered by them. We asked them to consider what inconveniences were like to grow daily upon these seas if a reasonable cessation were not accorded. To this Richardot (who is their mouth saving that Champagny choppeth in at every word) denied plainly that ever he spake any such thing, and there was no regard to be had to the words or letters of de Loo, and if they had said so in the winter the case was altered now, being time of the year to be in action, the duke having so great forces. Neither thought they that this our cessation was indifferent because we should assure them but from four towns, and they from all the towns in the Low Countries. Then we said that although they denied any promise of such a cessation yet her Majesty had good cause to be so persuaded, and sent her commissioners, which she would not otherwise have done without assurance of three things: that the duke had commission; that the choice of place should be left to her and that the general cessation should be accorded at the first meeting; whereby her Majesty had great cause to urge the cessation; and we think if the duke were informed of such reasons he would not stand in the matter. We therefore asked them to thank the duke for his courteous proffer for our defraying, which her Majesty doth take in good part, and moved Richardot to certify the duke of our reasons, and upon return of his answer, which we thought would be reasonable, we would enter into the principal matter, provided always that the cessation should not stand upon revocation of less time after intimation than 20 days; and desired him also to get a commission from the duke, as promised. We made some mention of my L. Admiral's being in the west seas with a puissant navy and it might be much doubted what accidents might happen if the K's. navy should come forth towards England, and he would do well to move the duke to write to the K. to cut off the occasion. The. K's. commissioners began to be impatient therewith … and said the duke had written so twice or thrice already upon hope of peace, for which they were now sorry seeing the peace to go forward no faster. We answered, we spake it but by way of advice … and so we parted, they in hope that we will enter upon the principal and we in no great hope that the duke will much enlarge anything that hath been proposed by his commissioners.
[Ask for direction as to the form of cessation her Majesty would have, or whether they shall have that point as it stands and enter into the principal, which seems to be the meaning of her letter before the addition of the postscript, or otherwise what her pleasure is upon the cessation, that they may be ready when the report comes from the duke. They also desire information upon what conditions may be considered as agreeable to the States and about the wise and well affected persons for the States to consult thereupon, and how they shall proceed for them, as also concerning the places in former accords which they should follow and how far or whether they shall out of them all gather a treaty for that point or otherwise to enter into the treaty of peace without them.]—Bourborough, 7th June, 1588.
Signed by Derby, Cobham, Dale and Rogers. Add. Endd. 5 pp. [Flanders IV. f. 47.]
||Copy of the Above.|
Endd. by Burghley. 4 pp. [Ibid. f. 53.]
||Cessation of Arms in three manners, weighed by D. Rogers.|
Endd. thus by Burghley, with date. Sheet, in tabular form. French. [Flanders IV. f. 51.]
||The Quintiplicate of the King's Commissioners, 3 June, 1588.|
Repeat denial that cessation granted before the coming of the queen's commissioners, and the offer made near Ostend; subsequently a cessation asked by Dr. Dale at Bruges, was granted without limit of time, which is more than is expedient for his Majesty's affairs. However they are content that no mention shall be made of a cessation, especially as the queen's commissioners state that they did not ask for it. With regard to what President Richardot said, all the world knows that his Majesty has no inconsiderable forces ready both by sea and land, but for what purpose is unknown to them; if they did know it would be imprudent to tell it, and they wonder at the question, especially as no enquiry was made concerning the fleets and arms which Lord Cobham, in the conference near Ostend, said were ready. It will be time to treat of Holland and Zeland when they come to the principal business.
Endd. Latin, from the French. 1 p. [Treaty Papers V. f. 70.]
||Another copy of the same.|
Latin. 1 p. [Ibid. f. 72.]
||The Sextuplication of her Majesty's Commissioners touching the Cessation of Arms. June 4, 1588.|
The promise of the cessation was given before the commissioners crossed, wherefore the queen ordered them to insist upon this before all else. A like promise to Dr. Rogers is denied but was made. The cessation is necessary for the conclusion of the articles of the peace. It was understood or implied in the preliminaries and assumed that the duke had powers for this as for the rest. Lord Cobham declared at Ostend that the queen had her forces ready for attack and defence, if compelled, but was content to hold them back and had sent her deputies to make peace. The question of the four towns in the cessation is not idle, as the king might be free to invade England from Belgium, while the queen's forces looked on. The four towns should be defended from Belgium, and Belgium from the towns. A form of words suitable for both should be devised mutually. That is the right course for a real cessation of arms for the four towns.
Endd. with date. Latin. 12/3 pp. [Flanders IV. f. 21.]
||Another copy of the same.|
Endd. Latin. 2½ pp. [Treaty Papers V. f. 74.]
||Dr. Dale to Burghley.|
There is a postscript in her Majesty's letters of the 2nd June that we must not yield to a cessation with clause of reservation under 20 days after revocation … which breedeth a marvellous perplexity in us. If we should grant a cessation leaving them at liberty to invade England without hindrance from her Majesty's forces, with the provision of the revocation to be enlarged to 20 days, it were too great an absurdity to be either granted or endured. But if her Majesty's meaning be as it was before the postscript was added that we should enter into the principal matter if we cannot get them to consent to have the cessation to restrain them from invasion, and let the cessation stand as it doth, we understand what to do. So that it may be more particularly specified how we shall deal touching them of Holland and Zeeland if none do come unto us to inform us of their estate, which we do not know further than by the actions of the former treaties, but how to maintain those actions with reasons such as they of the Low Countries can make, we know not. I hope your lp. doth see that upon a reasonable subject they may be dealt withal reasonably enough, both for matter and for language.—Bourbourgh, 7 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Flanders IV. f. 32.]
||Dr. Dale to Walsingham.|
To the same effect as the above.—Bourborgh, 7 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. f. 45.]
||Earl of Derby to Walsingham.|
Understands from Count d'Arenberghe that one special cause for Richardot's journey to Bruges was to visit his brother, who is in some extremity of sickness. Thanks for friendship continued to himself and his son Strange.—Bourborough, 7 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 34.]
||Sir James Croft to the Queen.|
His indebtedness to her for graces and favours received. Understands from the letters of the Treasurer and Secretary that she has pardoned his zealous errors, intended to advance her service, but finding them otherwise conceived they brought no small martyrdom to his old years in respect of the sharp reprehensions contained in her letters. Desires her all prosperous triumph and increase of dignity, as the thing wherein consisteth the particular safety, blessing and happiness of all England and Englishmen. Beseeches her to retain him in her protection, not doubting but that his service will testify to his clear intention.—Burborough, 7 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. 2/3 p. [Ibid. f. 36.]
||Copy of the same.|
[Ibid. f. 38.]
||Sir James Croft to Walsingham.|
Cannot forget the favours received from the Treasurer and Secretary. Their lordships will receive letters from the commissioners, written yesterday but not sent. Does not know if authorised to deal in these causes, but sat at the last conference, finding his name among the rest in the queen's last letters, and his presence being necessary to aver the things which had passed to his knowledge, wherewith he was made acquainted by the lords before their sitting. Asks him to clear the matter if there be any scruple therein. Meantime he will follow his former dutiful zeal in the queen's service.—Burborough, 9th June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Flanders IV. f. 39.]
||The Same to Burghley.|
Explaining his resumption of his duties.—Borborough, 7 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. f. 41.]
||Sir William Russell to Burghley.|
Asking, at the request of the Company of Merchants in this town, that they may be satisfied “for such victuals as were upon some needful occasion, provided for the Rammekins Castle"; the money to be deducted from Captain Errington's company.—Vlisshing, 8 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal of arms. ½ p. [Holland XXIV. f. 75.]
||The Commissioners to Walsingham.|
Send enclosure received from Lord Henry Seamor (fn. 2) to be considered by my lords of the Council.—Bourborough, 8 June, 1588.
Signed by all five. Add. Endd. ½ p. [Flanders IV. f. 55.]
||Sir Edward Norreys to Walsingham.|
Has delivered her Majesty's letters to Lord Willoby and the governor of Flushing; “who think it unsafe for them and the places in their custody to spare any companies, only, out of Flushing, 130 men drawn out of divers companies; albeit that, before my Lord Willoby, the opinion of the Governor and some others was that the town was not tenable three hours, and not to be defended against the enemy three days, though he brought but 3000 men before it; and with so many (did the governor say) that himself, if he were before it, would take it in that time. Stronger than we were then we are not, and the enemy as near, and re-inforced by Sir William Stanley's regiment; in all I think 7000 men. I pray God we may remove that opinion. I will do my best.” This day we begin to work. I pray the money to pay for it may be speedily sent; lest we leave off too soon.
I delivered the Lords' of the Council letters to the captains before the governor, who protested “that he had never written anything of any of us to that end that the letter carried. Lord Willoghby and Mr. Killigrew forbid me to deliver it until I knew your further pleasure; but I thought it fit to obey your orders, especially as the letter was directed to them all as well as to me. “He gave me also a commission to the captains to be directed in matters of the defence of the town by the governor and me, and that nothing should be done without my consent”; but I shall not show it them until there is more need than I see yet; beseeching your honour to consider “in what miserable estate we stand if there be need of this manner of proceeding; and how necessary it is that these differences be removed; the enemy being within two hours' march with an army….”—Ostend, 9 June, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Seal of arms. 2 pp. [Holland XXIV. f. 77.]
||Captain William Brown to Walsingham.|
Will be forced, within the month, to crave leave to return into England, unless the service actually requires his stay in those parts, in which case he would “rather run into extremity of private inconveniences than be absent when her Majesty's employments demand presence.” Has long expected their full pay, wherewith he designed to have contented his father's creditors in England, and so to lay some foundation of his own estate, but now growing desperate of that succour, he is “like to fall into the lash” unless his honour will be so much his friend as that, of his whole entertainment for two years he may obtain 150l. to prevent him from sinking.—Flushing, 9 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal with Griffin's head erased (no collar). ¾ p. [Ibid. f. 79.]
||M. Fremin to Walsingham.|
Some months ago I wrote to pray you to be a means for me to the Earl of Leicester for a cong´ and pass for me to withdraw, because of the earl's resignation and also the illtreatment which for two years I have received in these countries from the Estates, merely for having followed the English party; having in 15 months been paid only one month's wages and some victuals for my men; a thing hard to bear, as for six months I have been a solicitor in court to have either fitting entertainment or honourable dismissal, but can get neither one nor the other.
If however there should be some new war for her Majesty's service, and that your honour would make use of me, I could bring six companies of the oldest soldiers of these parts. As I know that your honour is fully informed of the state of these countries, I will leave the rest to Mr. Gadde.—19 June, 1588. Bergues.
Postscript. The Chevalier Drury, Governor of this town carries himself very honourably and cleverly in his charge.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Shield of arms, surmounted by crest. French. 1 p. [Ibid. f. 81.]
||Sir William Russell to Burghley.|
Before the last supply of powder from England, being driven to take up 30 barrels of corn powder at the hands of Thos. Brune, the victualler, weighing 3435 pounds, at 12s. sterling the pound, which was employed for her Majesty's service in this town; and seeing that he has been often and earnestly urged for payment; he prays his lordship to cause Sir Thos. Shirley to pay the said Brune now at his being in England; or that he would favour this poor garrison so much as to hasten over the pay, that Brune might be satisfied here, and the money “deducted from the companies who stand charged with the same.”—Vlisshinge, 10 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. ¾ p. [Holland XXIV. f. 83.]
||A collection of the principal points of the Conference held the 10th June at the Lord Treasurer's.|
It was resolved:
(1) As the K's. commissioners will not grant the cessation to extend any further than the 4 towns, not to accept thereof, but that the commissioners be directed to proceed in the treaty without further urging it.
(2) That letters be sent to Ld. Willoughby to solicit the States earnestly that all the wants of Ostend and Berghen op Zome be supplied.
(3) To move the States to yield more readily thereto that Ld. Willoughby shall let them understand that her Majesty will in no sort consent to a cessation for the four towns offered by the K's. commissioners, being given to understand that if the offer had been accepted the duke had resolved to employ all his forces against some of their towns.
Although the States have not joined with her Majesty in the treaty it was resolved that the commissioners should urge those of the K. to agree to some points accorded by the K. of Spain in previous treaties with his subjects, to be offered to the States, whereby there might ensue a general pacification for those countries.
To be urged for these reasons (1) that if the pacification be not general her Majesty cannot think the peace sound. (2) If the foreign forces remain she will be drawn to insist upon some points for her own surety, as retaining the cautionary towns, which the K. will not like of. (3) She has the more cause to desire the removal of the foreign forces as she is not ignorant of the plots laid between the pope and the K. of Spain to annoy her and deprive her of her crown.
The points to be propounded to the K.'s commissioners on behalf of the States are to be reduced to two heads. (1) Free exercise of religion for ten years, and then further provision to be referred to the States General. (2) The removing of strangers and government according to their ancient privileges, with other particulars to be referred to the Pacification of Ghent.
To induce them to yield a larger toleration than was granted in the said Pacification, the commissioners must let them understand that time has wrought such an increase of the religion in the Provinces, whereof the most part were never instructed in the Romish religion, that most of the people would be forced to abandon the country, without such toleration, and leave it desolate or else to fall to atheism.
It is likely the commissioners will yield the other point, as it has not been greatly stood on. But it is very doubtful if the K. will be induced to yield these points or if the States will accept them, and it was considered whether a peace might not be concluded without them. In the discussion the matter grew to two heads without any full resolution (1) whether there might be any peace made with surety without a concurrence with the States (2) whether in respect of the danger of wars and the necessity of a peace her Majesty might not grow to an agreement with the K. of Spain by withdrawing her forces from the Low Countries and delivering the cautionary towns into the States' hands, for it was held both dangerous and dishonourable to deliver them into the K.'s hands.
Endd. as above. 9 pp. [Flanders IV. f. 57.]
||Another copy of the same.|
2 pp. [Ibid. f. 67.]
||The best conditions for a peace.|
(1) To revive the ancient treaties of peace.
(2) Restoration of ancient liberties to people of Low Countries.
(3) That they may live in peace without garrisons otherwise than was before the troubles.
(4) Freedom of conscience.
(5) That Flushing and Briell be delivered to the States and governed as before the troubles.
(6) Repayment to the queen of the money for which those towns are a guarantee.
(7) Evacuation of all stranger forces from the Low Countries.
If the king will not grant the above points, then can her Majesty have no assurance of peace. If the king will grant them and the States will not accept the same, then is her Majesty discharged in honour if she make peace. In which these things are to be considered: that she may have her money before she deliver the two towns, or that she may deliver the towns to the States if they will pay the money, and that the States of the country now obeying the king may be bound by their oaths to join with her Majesty to withstand all attempts of force to be used out of the Low Countries until there may be a universal peace in all the Low Countries and that the forces of strangers be wholly removed.
If the king will not yield to these conditions then were it more convenient that her Majesty should continue in a joint defence with the provinces with whom she hath contracted for their aid.
In Burghleifs hand. Endd. with date. 2 pp. [Treaty Papers V. f. 76.]
||Answers or objections to the 7 Articles.|
(1) It is likely this will be granted, with an abolition of all demands for arrests or reprisals.
(2) This were meetest to be articled by the States, but as they have not as yet assented to join in the treaty, the overture will be made by H.M. upon the conditions granted by the pacification of Gaunt.
(3) Except the States will submit to the king, it is unlikely he will remove his garrisons, and if the stranger forces are not removed H.M. can have no assurance of peace. Margin. Very difficult to be resolved.
(4) Without freedom to exercise their religion publicly it will be impossible for them that never knew the Roman religion to forsake their own otherwise than to the damnation of their souls. The like may be said of others that by long teaching think they should be damned if they should change their religion. Margin. This very difficult.
(5) If the K. of Spain will not make peace unless Flushing and Brill are restored he may be answered that H.M. had them not of him nor by force, but from the States upon covenant to restore them if they might obtain a peace, so the best way was for the K. to grant peace and then the queen may restore the towns to the States, to be governed as before the troubles. Margin. Government civil thereof to the ordinary magistrates of the towns.
(6) What to be done about the cautionary towns in various contingencies.
(7) If there is no peace and the forces are not withdrawn, H.M. can have no surety to live in peace, as the bringing into those countries of such great forces of strangers first gave H.M. just cause to ask the people there, according to the ancient mutual confederation whereby it hath been always accorded that one should help the other; and also to impeach the threat to this realm by these stranger forces, as soon as they could subdue the people there. Yea the danger hath been many times threatened that it should be good for the K. of Spain first to begin to invade England, and the K. having his will thereof, then the Low Countries were most easy to yield to his will to be as a conquest to be governed by Spaniards, as Naples and Milan are. And the dangers are greater now than in the beginning, for then the attempts against England were only in outward appearance either to stir up rebellions and give succour to maintain them, or set up the Q. of Scots. Since then H.M. hath seen those dangers more imminent, first by the invasion of Ireland, with plain demonstration of seeking it by conquest … In this latter time H.M. certainly understandeth not only by common report but by a knowledge of the very contracts between the pope and the K. of Spain that the K. shall attempt to conquer the realm for himself and some of his children, and that the pope hath already given him the interest thereof, and the pope and the K. have to this end made the greatest provisions for money that they could. Wherefore H.M. hath more cause now than ever to have the great forces in the Low Countries removed, otherwise no promises nor conditions can yield her surety for her estate. Though it may be objected that until the States yield to peace the king must needs have forces there, it may be answered that the forces of the naturals of the country will suffice to compel them to yield if H.M.'s forces be removed, and it is probably they will yield to any reasonable conditions if the stranger forces, specially if the Spaniards be rid out of the Low Countries, whom they have most cause to fear, that whilst they remain they can never hope of any surety of peace to be kept with them, as they say by the breach of the pacification of Gaunt, as the K.'s best subjects, being naturals of these Countries, were forced to make head against the Spaniards for the help wherein the nobility then obeying the king sent to her Maj. to lend the money to maintain their forces, even on the K's. behalf against the Spaniards, for which money her Majesty hath the bonds of the States and towns of the country that now obey the king, whereof she looketh to be also repaid.
In Burghley's hand. Endd. with date. 42/3 pp. [Treaty Papers V. f. 78.]
||Cobham to Walsingham.|
This morning upon a sudden a bruit was raised that the Armado of Spain was come upon the coast of Bulleyn and that the D. had sent word that they should stay there until they heard from him; but making further inquisition we find it not so, but that they are come out of Lisbon. I have thought fit to tell you; though they be not so far advanced, yet if wind and weather permit they may be shortly heard of. What is or will be the sequel of our negotiations may easily be judged, therefore I hope there will be now some certain resolution there.—Burborow, 13 June.
I pray you have this bearer satisfied, for I would have him make haste.
Holograph. Add. Endd. ⅓ p. [Flanders IV. f. 71.]
||Dr. Dale to Burghley.|
The bearer, Mr. Deane of Rochester can give him full particulars. He is wise, learned and very discreet and as a looker on can report with judgement. He accompanied Dale to Bruges and can tell of the extortionate charges for convoys and otherwise. For that to Gant Mr. Cecil knows it full well, which is too heavy to bear.—Bourborough, 10 June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. f. 79.]
||Earl of Derby to Walsingham.|
Asks his favour for the bearer Mr. Deane of Rochester. Encloses copies of other letters, his own and of one of Sir Wm. Stanley, as they will probably arrive before the others. Two days since the Count of Arenberghe said to a gentleman sent to him by the earl: “I put cast we should upon a sudden land 30 or 40,000 men in England and that they might rest 24 hours quiet, would they not so surely esconse themselves as they could hardly be harmed.” This very day there was a report that the of Spam's navy lay at Bullen and had taken three men of war of England, yet given forth that they must rest quiet there till further of the king's pleasure was signified them.—Bourboroughe, 10 June, 1588.
Postscript on sending particulars lately delivered to him.
Signed. Cover with the enclosures. See below. 1 p. [Flanders IV. f. 73.]
||The Earl of Derby to Walsingham. (fn. 3) |
The bearer, John Shirte, returning to compound with Mr. Boothe of Dunham, one of the earl's attendants, for a tenement in Cheshire, sent a boy to one Bostock, a kinsman of his, serving Sir Wm. Stanley, to try and withdraw him from Sir Wm., who seeing the boy speak with Bostock, demanded who he was, and offered the boy entertainment. Finding the boy fully bent to accept it Shirte consented thereto, in hope to have the means about Sir Wm. to have intelligence of his stated condition. The man revealed this much to the earl and showed him the enclosed letter from Sir Wm. who promises to send to him that lewd priest and unnatural subject Worthington whose seditious letter intercepted by the governor of Ostend the earl sent on his arrival there. It was a grief to the earl to hear of Worthington being in the town as he could not take and send him over, as he would, had it been in his power. Has thought right to leave it to the bearer to report what passed between Worthington and himself or any others. Wishes it were in his power to send Worthington, Stanley or any such disloyal members, whose presence he must bear without offence towards them.—Bourborough, [blank] June, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1¼ pp. [Ibid. f. 193.]
Sib Wm. Stanley to John Shirte.
Thanks him for letter “I am sorry I may not stay your coming. I have left with Mr. Dr. Worthington to deliver my mind to you no way doubting of your fidelity for the which you shall be sure I will requite when you please to make proof of me … from Dunkirk this Sunday.”
Copy. ¼ p. [Ibid. f. 194.]
||Copy of the Earl's letter.|
Endd. in Walsingham's hand: “June 1588, a copy of the Earl of Derby's letter written to me touching Shirte.” 1 p. [Ibid. f. 196.]