Historical Collections of Private Passages of State: Volume 1, 1618-29. Originally published by D Browne, London, 1721.
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Historical Collections: 1622
That whereas he had formerly given order for the release of Recusants, by removing them from the several Gaols of this Kingdom, to be bailed before the Justices of the Bench: And finding that this course will be troublesome to the poorer sort of them, he doth now require, that Writs be directed to the Justices of the Affizes, enabling and requiring them, to enlarge such Recusants as they shall find in their several Gaols, upon such conditions and securities, as were required by the Judges of his Bench. Accordingly the Writs were issued forth under the Great Seal, and the Lord Keeper wrote to the Judges on this manner,
That the King having, upon deep Reason of State, and in expectation of the like correspondence from Forreign Princes to the Professors of our Religion, resolved to grant some grace to the imprisoned Papists, had commanded him to pass some Writs under the Broad Seal for that purpose: wherefore it is his Majesty's pleasure, that they make no niceness or difficulty to extend his Princely favour to all such, as they shall find Prisoners in the Goals of their Circuits, for any Church Recusancy, or refusing the Oath of Supremacy, or dispersing of Popish Books, or any other point of Recusancy that shall concern Religion only, and not matters of State.
But a general offence was taken at this indulgence to Papists, and the Lord Keeper's Letter to the Judges, which, how the Keeper endeavoured to renounce, may be seen in his Letter, written to a Person of Honour.
AS the Sun in the Firmament appears to us no bigger then a Platter, and the Stars but as so many Nails in the Pummel of a Saddle, because of the enlargement and disproportion between our Eye and the Object: So is there such an unmeasurable distance between the deep resolution of a Prince, and the shallow apprehensions of common and ordinary people; that as they will ever be judging and censuring, so they must needs be obnoxious to error and mistaking. The King is now a most zealous Intercessor for some ease and refreshment to all the Protestants in Europe, which were unreasonable, if he did now execute the rigour of his Laws against the Roman Catholicks.
Our Viperous Countreymen, the English Jesuits in France, had many months before the favour granted, invited the French King, by writing a malicious Book, to put all the Statutes in execution against the Protestants in those parts, which were enacted in England against the Papists, and (as they falsly informed) severaly executed. Besides, these Papists are no otherwise out of Prison, then with their shackles about their heels, sufficient Sureties, and good Recognizances, to present themselves at the next Assizes; and their own demeanour, and the success of his Majesty's Negotiations must determine, whether they shall continue in this grace.
But to conclude, from the favour done to the English Papists, that the King favours the Romish Religion, is a composition of Folly and Malice, little deserved by a gracious Prince, who by Word, Writing, Exercise of Religion, and Acts of Parliament, hath demonstrated himself so resolved a Protestant.
As for his own Letter to the Judges, he said, it recited only four kinds of Recusancy, capable of the King's clemency, not so much to include them, as to exclude many other Crimes, bearing the name of Recusancy, as, using the Function of a Romish Priest, seducing the King's Liege people from the established Religion, aspersing the King, Church, or State or the present Government.
All which Offences, being outward practices, and no secret motions of the Conscience, are adjudged, by the Law of England, to be merely Civil and Political, and are excluded by the Letter from the benefit of those Writs.
But because the peoples mouths were opened, and some Preachers were too busie, and the Puritan party increased, the King gave directions for the regulation of the Ministry, in his Letter to the Lord Archbishop of Canterbury.
Most Reverend Father in God, Right trusty and entirely beloved Counsellor, we greet you well. Forasmuch as the abuses and extravagancies of Preachers in the Pulpit, have been in all times suppressed in this Realm by some Act of Council, or State, with the advice and resolution of grave and learned Prelates; insomuch that the very licensing of Preachers had the beginning by an Order of Star-Chamber, the Eighth day of July, in the Nineteenth year of the Reign of King Henry the Eighth, our Noble Predecessor: And whereas at this present, divers young Students, by reading of late Writers, and ungrounded Divines, do broach many times unprofitable, unsound, seditious, and dangerous Doctrines, to the scandal of the Church, and disquiet of the State and present Government. We, upon humble representation unto us of these inconveniencies by your self, and sundry other grave and reverend Prelates of this Church, as also of our Princely care and zeal for the extirpation of Schism and Dissension growing from these seeds, and for the settling of a religious and peaceable Government, both in Church and Commonwealth, do by these our special Letters, straitly charge and command you, to use all possible care and diligence, that these Limitations and Cautions herewith sent unto you, concerning Preachers, be duly and strictly from henceforth put in practice, and observed by the several Bishops within your furisdication. And to this end our pleasure is, that you sent them forthwith Copies of these Directions, to be by them speedily sent and communicated unto every Parson, Vicar, Curate, Lecturer, and Minister, in every Cathedral or Parisb Church, within their several Diocesses; and that you earnestly require them, to employ their utmost endeavours in the performance of this so important a business; letting them know, that we have a special eye unto their proceedings, and expect a strict account thereof, both from you and every of them. And these our Letters shall be your sufficient Warrant and discharge in that behalf.
Directions concerning Preachers, sent with the Letter.
- I. "That no Preacher, under the Degree and Calling of a Bishop or Dean of a Cathedral, or Collegiate Church (and they upon the King's days, and set Festivals) do take occasion, by the expounding of any Text of Scripture whatsoever, to fall into any set discourse, or common place, otherwise then by opening the Coherence and Division of the Text; which shall not be comprehended and warranted in Essence, Substance, Effect, or Natural Inference, within some one of the Articles of Religion, set forth, One thousand five hundred fixty and two; or in some of the Homilies, set forth by authority of the Church of England: Not only for a help for the Nonpreaching, but withal for a pattern and boundary (as it were) for the Preaching Ministers. And for their further Instructions for the performance hereof, that they forthwith read over and peruse diligently the said Book of Articles,and the two Books of Homilies.
- II. "That no Parson, Vicar, Curate, or Lecturer, shall preach any Sermon or Collation hereafter, upon Sundays and Holidays in the afternoon, in any Cathedral or Parish Church throughout the Kingdom, but upon some part of the Catechism, or some Text taken out of the Creed, Ten Commandments, or the Lord's Prayer, (Funeral Sermons only excepted.) And that those Preachers be most encouraged, and approved of, who spend the Afternoon's Exercise in the Examination of Children in their Catechism, which is the most and ancient and laudable custom of Teaching in the Church of England.
- III. "That no Preacher of what Title soever, under the Degree of a Bishop, or Dean at the least, do from henceforth presume to preach in any popular Auditory the deep points of Predestination, Election, Reprobation, or of the Universality, Efficacy, Resistibility, or Irresistibility of God's Grace; but leave those Themes rather to be handled by the Learned Men, and that Moderately and Modestly by way of Use and Application, rather then by way of Positive Doctrines, being fitter for the Schools, then for simple Auditories.
- IV. "That no Preacher, of what Title or Denomination soever, from henceforth, shall presume in any Auditory within this Kingdom, to declare, limit, or bound out, by way of Positive Doctrine, in any Lecture or Sermon, the Power, Prerogative, and Jurisdiction, Authority or Duty of Sovereign Princes, of otherwise meddle with matters of State, and the differences between Princes and the People, then as they are instructed and presidented in the Homilies of Obedience, and the rest of the Homilies and Articles of Religion, set forth (as before is mentioned) by publick Authority; but rather confine themselves wholly to those two Heads of Faith and Good Life, which are all the subject of the Ancient Sermons and Homilies.
- V. "That no Preacher, of what Title or Denomination soever, shall presume causlesly, or (without invitation from the Text) to fall into bitter Invectives, and undecent railing Speeches against the persons of either Papists or Puritans, but modestly and gravely, when they are occasioned thereunto by the Text of Scripture, free both the Doctrine and the Discipline of the Church of England from the aspersions of either Adversary, especially where the Auditory is suspected to be tainted with the one or the other infection.
- VI. "Lastly, That the Archbishops and Bishops of the Kingdom (whom his Majesty hath good cause to blame for their former remisness) be more wary and choice in their Licencing of Preachers, and revoke all Grants made to any Chancellor, Official, or Commissary, to pass Licences in this kind: And that all the Lecturers throughout the Kingdom of England (a new body severed from the ancient Clergy, as being neither Parsons, Vicars, nor Curates) be Licenced henceforward in the Court of Faculties, by Recommendation of the party, from the Bishop of the Diocess, under his Hand and Seal, with a Fiat from the Lord Archbishop of Canterbury, a Confirmation under the Great Seal of England. And that such as do transgress any one of these Directions, be suspended by the Bishop of the Diocess, or in his default, by the Archbishop of the Province, Ab officio & beneficio, for a year and a day, until his Majesty, by the advice of the next Convocation, shall prescribe some further punishment.
The King lost no time in pursuing the Match with Spain; but the Dispensation from Rome, which was the Key of the business, had long lain in a kind of Dead Palfie, till the new King of Spain had, by a Letter, quickened the Pope: Whereupon there enfued a Congregation of Cardinals to determine the matter, and afterwards the Pope's assent: And then the Court of Spain declared such an entire Agreement for the Alliance with England, that King James was satisfied, and could expect no further difficulty.
But his intelligence from Bruxels, and all other parts of the World,did quickly cool, and almost quency his hopes. Sir Richard Weston was a man approved by Gondomar, who commended the King's wisdom in the Election of so fit a Minister for the Treaty at Bruxels; yet the man so well disposed, and suited to the King's designs, wrote desperate Letters of the Infanta's cold and unworthy manner of Treating in that important business of restoring the Palsgrave.
Whilst the King of England's proceedings were so just and clear, the Count Palatine was retired to Sedan, and there sojourned with his Uncle the Duke of Bouillon and his Partizans, Duke Christian of Brunswick, and Count Mansfeld, the pretended Obstacles of the Treaty; were removed, and had taken another course. Mansfeld went for Holland, where the States intended to use him for the raising of the Siege of Bergen,by cutting off the Convoys between Antwerp and the Spanish Leaguer: And King James had lately offered, that in case the Forces of Mansfeld and Brunswick would not rest, but still perturb the Treaty, he would joyn with the Emperor and the Arch-duchess to quiet them: And the English Companies in the Palatinate, being penned up in Garrisons, could not cause disturbance.
When the Ambassador, at Bruxels, complained of these proceedings, he received frivolous Answers, mixed with Recriminations. All that Weston obtained, was, only Letters of intreaty from the Infanta to the Emperor's Generals, to proceed no farther, though she had before acknowleged a full power from the Emperor to conclude the desired Cessation: But they pretended that they would restore all when all was taken.
For this cause, Sir Richard Weston acquainted the Marquiss of Buckingham, that he could not discern how the weak hopes given him at Bruxels, could agree with the strong assurances given by the Lord Digby from the Court of Spain.
Mr. Gage returned from Rome, with no better fruit of his Agency; for the Dispensation cannot pass, till the King give satisfaction to a number of new Conditions, which before were never dreamed of, and had this mischief in them, to bring the King in jealousie with the greatest part of his Subjects. A piece of Juggling was observed in this Negotiation: For some points of larger Indulgence, whereunto King James had yielded, were concealed from the Pope by the Ministers of the King of Spain.
The Court then devised to put a good face upon an ill Game, and good Sauce to an unsavoury Dish: For all the world expecting that Gage should bring the Dispensation at his first arrival, they made him give out, That it was passed at Rome, and sent from thence to Spain.
But the King made a close pursuit, and resolved they should not escape him. The Pope's demands superadded to the Articles of Marriage were taken in hand, and Resolutions were given upon them in manner following.
That it was more than was assumed by himself, or his Son the Prince; That the Chapel allowed was not a private Oratory, but, in effect, a Church, where the World might take notice of the Religion which the Infanta professed in publick manner.
To another demand, That the Superior Minister having Ecclesiastical Authority, be in Ordine Episcopali; he answered, That he would leave it to the King of Spain to appoint as he shall judge expedient.
But whereas the Pope required, That the Ecclesiasticks be subject to no Laws, but of their own Ecclesiastical Superiors; his answer was, That exemption seemed strange, as not allowed in all States and Countries that were of the Roman Religion.
As for the Education of the Children under the Mother's government; Let the King of Spain judge indifferently (said the King) how unfit it were for us to declare to the world, that we engaged our self to permit our Grand-children to be brought up unto years of Marriage, in a Religion which we prosets not, and which is not publickly professed in our Kingdom. And further then we have already assented in general, to leave the Children under the Mother's tuition for a longer or shorter time, according to their constitution and health(which may possibly reach unto the time required by the Pope) we can by no means condescend, unless the King of Spain think it fit to limit the time to a certainty.
And whereas the Pope expected some larger offers, for the general good of the Roman Church; the King shewed, That the Articles of Religion agreed upon between himself and the late King of Spain, were accounted so satisfactory in the Judgment of the Learnedst, and Greatest Clergy of Spain, that they declared their opinion, That upon the offer of such Conditions, the Pope ought not to with-hold the Dispensation.
And he said further, That the Pope was satisfied, that he of his own Authority could not grant a general Liberty of exercising the Roman Religion; And what is it that they would have? For setting that aside, he had in a manner done already all that was desired, as all the Roman Catholicks have found, out of his gracious clemency towards them, and will no doubt acknowledge.
Right Trusty and Well-beloved,
Our pleasure is, that immediately you crave Audience of that King, and represent unto him the merit that we may justly challenge to our self, for our sincere proceedings with the Emperor and him: Notwithstanding the many Invitations and Temptations we have had to engage our self on our Son in Law's part. That we have both from the Emperor, and from him, hopes given as from time to time of extraordinary respect, (howsoever our Son in Law had deserved) which we have attened and expected, even to the last, with much patience, and in despight, as it were, of all opposition, which might shake our resolution in that behalf: If now, when all Impediments are removed, and the way is so prepared, as that the Emperor may give an end unto the War, and make some present Demonstrations of his respect towards us, in leaving us the honour of holding those poor Places, which yet remain quietly and peaceably, until the general Accommodation, the same shall nevertheless be violently taken from us; what can we look for, if the whole shall be in his hands and possession? Who amuzing us with a Treaty of Cessation, and protracting it industriously (as we have reason to believe) doth in the mean time seize himself of the whole Country. Which being done, our Ambassador shall return with scorn, and we remain in dishonour: And therefore, as we have heretofore sundry times promised, in testimony of the sincerity of our proceedings, and of our great desire to preserve the Amity inviolable between us and the whole House of Austria; that in case our Son in Law would not be governed by us, that then we would not only forsake him, but take part and joyn our Forces with the Emperor's against him. So you may fairly represent unto that King, That in like manner we have reason to expect the same measure from him: That upon the Emperor's averseness to a Cessation, and Accommodation, he will likewise actually assist us for the recovery of the Palatinate, and Electoral Dignity to our Son in Law, as it hath been oftentimes intimated from Spain. Ret our meaning is, to carry all things fair with that King, and not to give him any cause or distrust or jealousie, if you perceive that they intend to go really and roundly on with the Match: Wherein, nevertheless, we must tell you, That we have no great cause to be well pleased with the diligence used on that part, when we observe, that after so long an expectance of the Dispensation, upon which the whole business, as they will have it, depends, there is nothing yet returned but Queries and Objections.
We have thought fit to let you know, how far we are pleased to enlarge our self concerning those points demanded by the Pope: And further then that since we cannot go without much prejudice, inconvenience, and dishonour to our Self, and our Son; we hope and expect, that the King of Spain will bring it instantly to an issue, without further delay, which you are to press with all diligence, and earnestness: But if respite of time be earnestly demanded, and that you perceive it not possible for them to resolve, until an answer come from Rome, We then think it fit, that you give them two months time after you Audience, that we may understand that Kings final Resolutions before Christmas next at furthest.
"Here is a King, and a Prince, and a faithful Friend and Servant, Buckingham, besides a number of other Friends, to whom every day seems a year, till the Match be accomplished; all things are prepared on our parts, Priests and Recusants are at liberty, and the Prisons are filled with zealous Ministers: Orders are published for the Universities and Pulpits, that none shall hereafter be meddling, but that all preach Christ crucified.
"His Majesty never looked to the rising or falling hopes of his Son in Laws fortunes, but kept in the same course that seems most agreeable to Honour and Justice, and the peace of Christendom. And Gondomar did beseech the King, to suffer himself once to be deceived by Spain, and promised, when the Match was first moved, and the King perswaded to break with France, That he should be prest to nothing, but what might stand with Conscience and Honour, and the love of his people.
"And whereas the Pope would know what Bonum Publicum will be granted, we remit it to your Conscience, whether the favours daily granted to Catholicks, which the King resolves to continue, if not to increase, be not a real publick good, considering if the Match break off, his Majesty will be importunately urged by his people, to whose assistance he must needs have recourse, to give life and execution to all Penal Laws, now hanging over the heads of Catholicks.
"That for the accomplishing of the Match on their part, there should not one day be lost; for the dispatch thereof imported them no less then the King of Great Britain: And for the Palatinate, they will seek his satisfaction; and they refer it to his own just judgment, whether their Forces were called out of the Palatinate, with an evil intention, or merely for the defence of Flanders, which otherwise had been put in great hazard by Count Mansfeld: That the besieging of Heidelburgh was no way by their consent, or knowledge, but was generally disapproved by them. And if it should be taken, and the Emperor refused to restore it, or to condescend to such Accommodation as should be adjudged reasonable, the King of Great Britain shall be infallibly assisted with the Arms of Spain, for the restoring of the Palatinate.
And, as concerning the Match, Bristol seemed so confident, as to declare to the King his Master, "That he should not willingly give his Majesty hope upon uncertain grounds, so he would not conceal what the Spanish Court professed, which was, to give his Majesty both real and speedy satisfaction. And he affirmed, if they intended it not, they were falser then all the Devils in hell, for deeper Oaths and Protestations of Sincerity could not be made.
But in the mean while, the Town and Castle of Heidelburgh were taken, and the English Companies put to the Sword, and Sir Edward Herbert, the Governour, was slain, after he had broken four Pikes in charging the Enemy. The besieging of Manheim, and the blocking of Frankendale, followed the loss of Heidelburgh.
The King James provoked by the continual progress of these indignities, was impatient of staying for a Reply from Spain to his former Letters, but seconded those resolutions with a vehement new dispatch, the Third of October, in a peremptory style, as it well became him; commanding the Earl of Bristol to let that King understand, how sensible he was of the Emperor's proceedings towards him; and withal,not a little troubled to see, that the Infanta at Bruxels, having an absolute Commission from the Emperor, to conclude a Cessation and Suspension of Arms, should now at last, when all Objections were answered, and the former solely pretended Obstacles removed, not only delay the Conclusion of the Treaty, but refuse to lay her Commands upon the Emperor's Generals, for abstaining from the Garrisons during the Treaty, upon a pretext of want of Authority: So as for the avoiding of further dishonour, he hath been forced to recal both of his Ambassadors, as well the Chancellor of his Exchequer from Bruxels, as also the Lord Chichester, whom he intended to have sent unto the Emperor to the Dyet at Ratisbonne.
He further enjoyned his Ambassador, That having delivered his sense of things, he should demand of the King of Spain a promise under his Hand and Seal, that the Town and Castle of Heidelburgh shall be delivered to the Palatine within seventy days after the Audience, and the like for Manheim and Frankendale, if they be taken. That within the said term of Seventy days, a Suspension of Arms in the Palatinate be concluded upon the Conditions last propounded by Sir Richard Weston at Bruxels; and that a general Treaty shall be again set on foot upon such honourable terms, as were tendred to the Emperor in November last. But if these particulars be resufed or delayed by the Emperor, that the King of Spain shall joyn Forces with the King of Great Britain, for the recovery of his Children's Honours and Patrimony. And if he cannot give assistance, that he will at least allow him a free and friendly passage through his Territories, for the Forces to be employed in that service.
Of these points distinctly, if the Ambassador should not receive a direct assurance, he was to take his leave of that King, and to return into his Master's presence. But the King annexed this private instruction, That in case a Rupture happened, it might be managed to the best advantage. Wherefore he should not instantly come away, but send him secret intelligence, and in publick give out the contrary.
Immediately upon these demands, an Order was sent from Spain to Bruxels, for the relief of Manheim, but it came too late; for before the arrival thereof, the Town was yielded into the hands of Tilly: But had it come in season, the effect thereof might be guessed by Tilly's reasons, presented to the Archduchess, against raising the Siege of Manheim, and the restoring of Heidelburg, to this purpose;
That he could not do it without the Emperor's express consent, and that the winning of Manheim was to be hastned, to prevent the machinations of evil Neighbours, who were plotting new Commotions in favour of the Count Palatine, and especially to obviate the designs of CountMansfeld.
How little the Emperor attributed to the King's Humanity and upright dealing, which he applauded in shew, might be discerned by sure advertisements of his purpose, to propound in the Dyet at Ratisbonne, his promise of translating the Palatine Electorate to the Duke of Bavaria, as a thing irrevocable.
Moreover, the King of Spain, the Fifth of November, 1622. in the heighth of those professions made to the English Ambassador, touching the Marriage, wrote, on this manner, to his grand Favourite, the Conde Olivares.
The King my Father declared at his death, that his intent never was to marry my Sister, the Infanta Donna Maria with the Prince of Wales, which your Uncle Don Balthazar understood, and so treated this Match ever with intention to delay it; notwithstanding, it is now so far advanced, that considering all the aversness unto it of the Infanta, it is time to seek some means to divert the Treaty, which I would have you find out, and I will make it good whatsoever it be. But in all other things, procure the satisfaction of the King of Great Britain, (who hath deserved much) and it shall content me, so that it be not in the Match.
SIR, Considering in what estate we find the Treaty of Marriage between Spain and England, and knowing certainly how the Ministers did understand this business, that treated it in the time of Philip the Third, that is in Heaven, that their meaning was never to effect it, but by enlarging the Treaties and Points of the said Marriage, to make use of the Friendship of the King of Great Britain, as well in matters of Germany, as those of Flanders: And imagining likewise, that your Majesty is of the same opinion (though the Demonstrations do not shew so) joyning to these Suppositions; that it is certain the Infanta Donna Maria is resolved to put her self into a Monastery the same day that your Majesty shall press her to this Marriage: I have thought fit to represent unto your Majesty, that which my good zeal bath offered me in this occasion, thinking it a good time to acquaint your Majesty withal, to the end you may resolve of that which you shall find most convenient, with the advice of those Ministers you shall think fit to make choice of.
The King of Great Britain doth find himself at this time equally engaged in two business; the one is this Marriage, to which he is moved by the conveniencies he finds in your Majesty's friendship, by making an Agreement with those Catholicks, that he thinks are secretly in his Kingdom; and, by this, to assure himself of them, as likewise to marry his Son to one of the House of Austria; knowing, that the Infanta Donna Maria is the best born Lady in the World. The other business is, the restitution of the Palatinate, in which he is more engaged; for beside that his Reputation is at flake, there is added the love and interest of his Grand-children, Sons of his only Daughter: So that both by the Law of Nature, and Reason of State, he ought to put that forward, whatever inconveniencies might follow by dissembling what they suffer.
I do not dispute, whether the King of Great Britain be governed, in this business of the Palatinate, by Act or Friendship; I think a man might say, he used both; but as a thing not precisely necessary to this discourse, I omit it. I hold it for a Maxim, that these two Engagements in which he finds himself, are inseparable; for although the Marriage be made, we must fail of that which in my way of understanding is most necessary, the restitution of the Palatinate.
This being supposed, having made this Marriage in that form as it is treated, your Majesty shall find your self, together with the King of Great Britain, engaged in a War against the Emperor and the Catholick League: A thing which to hear, will offend your godly ears, or declaring your self for the
Emperor, and the Catholick League, as certainly your Majesty will do, then you will find your self engaged in a War against the King of England, and your Sister married with his Son; with the which, all whatsoever reasons of conveniency that were thought upon in this Marriage, do cease. If your Majesty shall shew your self Neutral, as it may be some will propound; That, first, will cause very great scandal, and with just reason, since in matters of less opposition, then of Catholicks against Hereticks, the Arms of this Crown have taken the godly part, against the contrary party; and at this time the French-men, fomenting the Hollanders against your Majesty, your piety hath been such, that you have sent your Arms against the Rebels of that Crown, leaving all the great considerations of State, only because these men are Enemies to the Faith, and the Church.
It will oblige your Majesty, and give occasion to those of the League to make use of the King of France, and of other Catholick Princes, ill-affected to this Crown; for it will be a thing necessary for them to do so: And those even against their own Religion, will foment and assist the Hereticks for hatred to us. Without doubt they will follow the other party, only to leave you Majesty with that blemish, which never hath befallen any King of these Dominions. The King of England will remain offended and enraged, seeing that neither interest, nor helps do follow the Alliance with this Crown, as likewise with pretext of particular resentment; for having suffered his Daughter and Grand-children to be ruined for respect of the said Alliance.
The Emperor, though he be well-affected, and obliged to us in making the Translation at this time, as businesses now stands, (the Duke of Bavaria being possessed of all the Dominions) although he would dispose all according to our Conveniencies, it will not be in his power to do it, as your Majesty, and every body may judge: And the Memorial that the Emperor's Ambassador gave your Majesty yesterday, makes it certain, since in the Lift of the Soldiers, that every one of our League is to pay, he sheweth your Majesty, that Bavaria for himself alone, will pay more, then all the rest joyned together; the which doth shew his power and intention, which is not to accommodate matters, but to keep, to himself, the Superiority of all in this broken time, the Emperor is now in the Dyet, and the Translation is to be made in it.
The Proposition in this estate, is, by considering the means for a Conference, which your Majesty's Ministers will do with their Capacities, Zeal, and Wisdom; and it is certain, they will herein have enough to do. For the difficulty consists to find a way to make the present estate of affairs straight again, which with lingring, as it is said, both the power and time will be lost. I suppose the Emperor, as your Majesty knoweth by his Ambassador, desires to marry his Daughter with the King of England's Son. I do not doubt but he likewise glad to marry his second Daughter with the Palatine's Son: Then I propound, that these two Marriages be made, and that they be set on foot presently, giving the King of England full satisfaction in all his propositions, for the more strict Union and Correspondency, that he may agree to it. I hold for certain, that all the Conveniencies that would have followed the Alliance with us, will be as full in this: And the Conveniencies in the great Engagement are more by this; for it doth accommodate the matter of the Palatinate, and Succession of his Grand-children with honour, and without drawing a Sword, and wasting Treasure. With this Interest, the Emperor, with the Conveniencies of the King of England and the Palatinate, the only means in my way of understanding, to hinder those great dangers that do threaten, may accommodate the bussiness, and of sever himself from the Conveniencies and Engagements of Bavaria; and after I would reduce the Prince Elector, that was an Enemy, to the obedience of the Church, by breeding his Sons in the Emperor's Court with Catholick Doctrine.
The Business is great, the Difficulties greater perchance than have been in any other case. I have found my self obliged to present this unto your Majesty, and shall shew, if you command me, what I think fit for the disposing of the things, and of the great Minister which your Majesty hath. I hope with the particular Notes of these things, and all being helped with the good zeal of the Conde Gondemar, it may be, God will open a way to it, a thing so much for his, and your Majesty's Service.
Such Consultations had the Catholick King in his Cabinet-Council, whilst he pretended so much zeal to a Closure with England: Insomuch that King James professed to have taken great contentment in the Dispatches of the Earl of Bristol, as full and satisfactory. And though the Order sent to the Archduchess for the Relief of Anheim arrived too late, yet he acknowledged it to be an argument of that King's sincere intentions.
But the King's hopes were still deferred, and these Delays were palliated by the stop of the Dispensation, till the Pope were further satisfied in the time of the Childrens education under the Mother's Government, and the exemption of Ecclesiastical persons from all secular Jurisdiction. And the Spaniards did not spare to stretch the King's ductile Spirit: For he was willing to stand obliged by a private Letter, that the Children should be kept under the Mother's wing till at age of Nine years; be he desired for honour's sake, that no more than Seven might be express'd in the publique Articles.
But this Enlargement would not satisfie; he must come up to the allowance of Ten years, which was the lowest of all to be expected; and so he was brought at length to wave his Honour, and to insure this Concession by a publick Ratification, and for the Exemption of Ecclesiasticks from the Secular Power, thus far he yielded, That the Ecclesiastical Superior do take notice of the offence that shall be committed, and according to the merit thereof, either by Degradation deliver him to secular Justice, or banish him the Kingdom.
Bristol's importunate Negotiation procured this Answer from the King of Spain. First, touching the Marriage, being desirous to overcome all difficulties that might hinder this Union, he had endeavoured to conform himself with the Resolution given by the King of Great Britain to the Pope's Proposition, and had dispatched a Post to Rome; that his Holiness judging what hath been here concluded, and held sufficient, might grant the Dispensation, which he engageth to procure within three or four Months at the farthest: And in the interim, that no time be lost, the remaining Temporal Articles shall be Treated and concluded.
As touching the Palatinate, by his late Dispatches into Flanders, due course is taken to settle all things as may be desired: but until it be known what effects the same hath wrought, and what the Emperor will reply, no answer can be given in writing to the Particulars contained in the Ambassador's Memorial.
Moreover the Pope's Demands, to which King James took exceptions, being now accommodated by the King of Spain, were sent into England, and presently signed by the King and Prince, without the change of a word.
King James having strong assurance that the Dispensation must needs be granted speedily, appointed his Agent Gage, who was now again at Rome, to present to the Pope and certain Cardinals those Letters which lay in his hand to be delivered at a fit season. The King's Letter to the Pope, gave him the style of Most Holy Father. Likewise he directed the Earl of Bristol to proceed to the Temporal Articles, and to consummate the whole business.
But while the King had so much zeal and confidence in his Applications to Spain and Rome, the Palatinate is left at random, upon the Spaniards loose and general promises: For Colonel Papenheim had block'd up Frankendale, the only Hold whereby the Palsgrave kept a footing in his ruined Country. The Imperialists laughed to think that the English Garrison should expect relief by the Orders sent from Spain to Bruxels: And when the King had made an offer to sequester the Town of Frankendale into the Infanta's hands, upon the same assurance from her which herself had offered before the loss of Manheim, which was to restore the place, whether a peace with the Emperor, or a rupture followeth, she was fallen away from that proposition, and would accept the sequestration only upon a simple trust to render it again at the expiration of eighteen Months.
In this state of affairs, the King wrote thus to his Ambassador in the Spanish Court. Concerning the unfortunate knotty affair of the Palatinate to say the truth, as things now stand, we cannot tell what you could have done more then you have already done. Moreover he shewed, that the reason of his late peremptory Instructions concerning a direct promise of Restitution, was the gross delay at Bruxels while Heidelbourgh was taken, and Manheim beleagured; as also Gage's coming from Rome, and in stead of the Dispensation, presenting him with new demands to engage him in a Dispute of Treaty with the Pope, which he said he never intended. Wherefore at the instance and perswasion of his Council he was moved to urge the matter so, as to bring it to a suddain period: Not but that the precisest of them were always of opinion. That if the Match were once concluded, the other business would be accommodated to his satisfaction. Then was the Ambassador required to stir up that King to use all effectual means for diverting the Translation of the Electorate in the present Diet: Likewise to make him an offer of Frankeldale by way of sequestration, upon condition of restoring it in the case as now it stands, whether the Peace succeed or not.
But in the Dyet held at Ratisbone, the Emperor declared the Palatine, to be the cause and groundwork of all those Wars and Miseries; and that the Electorate of this proscribed Enemy being devolved into his hands, he had conferred it upon the Duke of Bavaria, who in this cause and service had spent his Treasure, and hazarded his blood against his own Nephew the Palsgrave.
The Protestant Princes desired the Emperor to consider, That in so high a Cause as the disposing of an Electorate, and so principal a Person in the College of Electors, who uncited, unheard, and without all knowledge of the Cause hath been condemned, and against all Equity oppressed by the Publication of the Ban; His Imperial Majesty should not have proceeded so rigorously without the Advice and Consent of the other Electors, as was agreed upon in the Capitulation Royal, and Fundamental Law of the Empire. And since the Dyet was called for restoring the Peace of the Empire, it were necessary,' in the first place, to remove the Obstacles, those extream Executions in Bohemia, which may make that people desperate, and which the Lutheran States, following the Augustane Confession, have their eyes upon. And though it be given out, that the feverity there exercised, is merely for private Justice, yet it is so linked with the publick Cause, that unless it be speedily ended, and the two Churches in Prague again opened, and the free exercise of Religion permitted, they can fee no sure peace, but desolation and rain like to follow. And for the Prince Palatine, seeing he is already sufficiently punished, it were commendable in his Imperial Majesty to restore him, upon submission, to his Lands and Dignities; otherwise there is no likelihood of restoring peace. And in transferring the Electorate, if it must be so, this main thing were to be considered, whether the exclusion of the Palsgrave's person doth exclude his Children, who, by the providence of their Ancestors, before this act of their Father, had an hereditary right thereunto: Or, Whether that Prince's Brother, or other of the Kindred, who have no way offended, should be in this case neglected? This will be ill resented by the other Electors and Princes, allied to the Palatine, who have been quiet hitherto, upon confidence of the Emperor's clemency; but perceiving all hopes of recovering the Electoral Dignity to their Family taken away, must needs have recourse to Arms. They further added, That the Palatine was young, and abused by evil Counsels, and no way the Author of the stirs in Bohemia. Wherefore they give their advice, That his restoring will quiet the otherwise endless troubles of the Empire, and for ever engage him, and all his Allies, and the whole Electoral College, to his Imperial Majesty.
The Catholick Princes answered, That the Palatinate being devolved upon the Emperor, he may bestow it according to his own pleasure; And that he cannot safely hold any terms of Amity with the Palatine: That the impunity of so great an Offender, will encourage others to offend: And as for by-past sufferings, there hath been little difference between his and the Emperor's, though the Cause were far different: And that Mansfeld his General is yet in the Field, and prosecutes his Cause by force of Arms.
The other Party replied, That the security of the Imperial Dignity, and the safety of the Empire, consisted in the Concord between the Emperor and the Princes Elector; And if his Imperial Majesty shall use this rigor, the Princes of Lower Saxony are of opinion, that there can be no peace established: But this desired Reconciliation will give the Emperor a quiet possession of the Provinces recovered by the aid of the Electors and Princes; otherwise there is a fair pretension left for the renewing of the War, for that the Palatine's Sons and Brother are passed by in the translation of the Elector; and the King of Great Britain cannot but take it ill, to fee his endeavours produce no better effect, but that his only Daughter and her Children are left in Exile.
The Emperor takes up the debate, and sheweth, That before the Ban was published, he desired nothing more, then that a Diet might be convoked; which being impeded by the prosecution of the War, he could not do less then publish this Proscription to repress the Palatine; which some, that now dispute it, did then declare to be legal and necessary: And this proscribed Enemy he will not restore to the Electoral Dignity, nor yet defer to compleat the number of Electors.
Thus have we good words from Spain, and miserable usage from all the rest of the House of Austria. Sir Dudly Carlton, Ambassador Resident at the Hague, assured the Marquis of Buckingham, that through the Spanish Ambassador D'Ognat in publick opposed the Emperor, in transferring the Electorate, yet the judgment generally made upon it, was this, That it was a mere Patelinage, with a secret understanding, to abuse King James his goodness. Likewise the Emperor, not content to have chased the Palsgrave out of Germany, in the Propositions of the former Diet, made this an Article, to make War upon the United Provinces, because (among other quarrels) they gave refuge to the expulsed Palatine. Nevertheless, King James resolved to wait upon the March with Spain, as the only means to consolidate these publick fractures in Christendom.
And now, behold a strange Adventure and Enterprise! The Prince and the Marquis of Buckingham, accompanied with Cottington and Endymion Porter, post in disguise to Spain, to accelerate the Marriage. The 17 of February they went privately from Court, and the next day came to Dover, where they imbarqued for Boloign, and from thence rode post to Paris, where they made some stop. The Prince, shadowed under a bushy Peruque, beheld the splendor of that Court, and had a full view of the Princess Henrietta Maria, who was afterwards his Royal Consort. For besides the great privacy of the Journey, they had so laid the English Ports, that none should follow, or give the least advertisement, until they had gotten the start of the Intelligencers, and passed the bounds of France. Howbeit, they escaped narrowly, and a swift intelligence sent to the King of Spain from Don Carlos Colonna was even at their heels, before they arrived at Madrid.
The Prince and Buckingham being in the Territories of Spain, to make but little noise, rode post before their Company. The 7 of March they arrived at Madrid, the Royal Residence, and were conveyed with much secrecy into the Earl of Bristol's House. The next morning the Earl acquainted Gondomar with the arrival of the Marquis of Buckingham: Olivares sends immediately to desire leave to visit the Marquis, which was by no means permitted; but in the evening the Marquis went privately, accompanied with the Earl of Bristol, Sir Walter Aston, and Conde Gondomar, and met this great Conde in a place near the Palace, and after some converse, was led by a back way into the King's Quarters, and had private audience of the King; who received him with extraordinary courtesies, and expressions of so great joy, that might signifie he was not ignorant of the Prince's arrival also: Insomuch that the Conde Olivares having procured the King's leave, went back with the Marquis of Buckingham, and kissed the Prince's hands.
After this, the King and State devise how to give his Highness the most honourable reception. Instantly they decree, That upon all occasions of meeting, he shall have the precedency of the King; That he shall make his entrance into the Royal Palace in that form of State, which is used by the Kings of Spain on the day of their Coronation, and that one of the chief Quarters in the King's house shall be prepared for his Lodgings; That an hundred of the Guard attend him, and all the Council obey him as the King's own person.
The common sort did magnifie this brave adventure, and express his welcome by shouts and acclamations of joy; and presently they marry him to the Infanta, as it were, by publick voice. And the King, to please him with a sight of his Miltress, went abroad to visit a Monastery, with the Queen, the Infanta, and his Brothers, Don Carlos, and the Infant-Cardinal: So that his Highness had the happiness of a full view in several places.
The King in person gave him several visits, and forced him to take the hand and place of him. Divers Grandees, and prime Officers of State, came to present their service, and as yet none did visit him but by the King's special order. A General Pardon was published; the Prisons were opened, and hundreds of Offenders were set at liberty; and a late Proclamation against Excess in Apparel was revoked. Neither may we forget the King's strain of Complement in the Advancement of Gondomar, to whom he ascribed his great contentment and honour received by his Highness's presence; That he had made the Conde (whom he was pleased to term an English-man) one of his Council of State, to the end that his Highness might be confident of their proceedings, and privy to all their passages.
The Prince, on the day of publick Entrance, was attended in the morning by the Conde Gondomar, and divers Counsellor's of State, to S. Jerom's Monastery, the place whence the Kings of Spain are wont to make their solemn entrance into Madrid on the day of their Coronation: there the Prince was seasted, and served by divers great Officers of State, waiting bare-headed. After dinner, the King came to conduct his Highness through the Town to the Royal Palace, having prepared all things for the Solemnity in the greatest magnificence and splendor.
The King setting the Prince on his right hand, they rode in great glory, under a Canopy of State, supported by the Regidors of the Town, who were arrayed in Cloth of Tissue: The Nobility and Grandees of Spain attended by their several Liveries, all very rich and costly, went before; and after came the Marquis of Buckingham, and the Conde Olivares, executing their places of Masters of the Horse: after them followed the Earl of Bristol and Sir Walter Aston, accompanied with divers Counsellors of State, and Gentlemen of the King's Chamber.
And being alighted at the Palace-gate, the King led the Prince to the Queen's Quarters, where having entred her Chamber, he was met and received by her with great respect, in manner becoming the state of great Princes; three Royal Seats were placed, the Queen sat in the middle, the Prince on her right hand, and the King on the left. His Highness was thence conducted by the King, to the Lodgings prepared for him; where, after they had conversed a while, the King left him.
After a little pause, the Queen, by her Major-domo, gave him a further and very noble welcome, with sundry rich Presents, as Perfumes, and costly Wearing Linen. The King sent him two Golden Keys; which would open all his Privy-lodgings, and his Bed-chamber, giving him to understand, that he had free access to him at all hours.
The Counsellors of State presented themselves, to let him know, That by the King's express command they were to obey his Highness as exactly, as the King himself. He was constantly attended and served with Grandees and Tituladoes, and was entertained with many Shews and Triumphs, and several daily Pastimes. And one day running at the Ring, in company of divers of the Nobility, his Highness was the only person that bore the Ring away, and that in presence of the Infanta his Mistress, which was interpreted a good Omen at the beginning of his Atchievement, In fine, there wanted nothing which the wit of man could devise for the height of outward glory: The Governours of the Town presented the Marquis of Buckingham with the rich Cloth of State, which was born over the King and Prince in the great Solemnity, as a Fee belonging to the Place which he then executed.
From the Court of England, many Lords and Gentlemen went after the Prince, that by a splendid Train and Retinue of his own People, he might appear as the Prince of England. And the Marquis of Buckingham was then made a Duke, by a Patent from England.
This magnificent Entertainment, and the universal joy in Spain, was grounded on the hope of the Prince's turning Catholick: For the voice of the people went, That he was come to be a Christian. And the Conde Olivares, when he gave him the first visit, did congratulate his arrival with these expressions, "That the Match would be made presently, and that the King of Spain and England should divide the World between them; for that he did not question, but he came thither to be of their Religion. Whereunto the Prince answered, That he came not thither for Religion, but for a Wife.
But there wanted no endeavours to reconcile the Prince, and, by him, the British Dominions to the See of Rome. Gregory the Fifteenth, then Pope, (fn. 1) exhorted the Bishop of Conchen, Inquisitor-General of Spain, to improve the opportunity: And he fought to charm the Prince, by writing a very smooth Letter to him: Yea, he condescended to write to Buckingham, his Guide and Familiar, to incline him to the Romish Religion. And the Pope also wrote a Letter to the Prince, the tenour where of followeth.