A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 1, 1638-1653. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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Remonstrance of the English embassadors in Holland to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
Whereas the islands of Scilly or Sorlinge are and have been anciently a part of the lands and territoryes belongeinge to the commonwealth of England, and were in possession of the parliament, and kept for them by a guarison paied by them, untill it was of late betrayed and put into their enemys hands; to reduce which they have imployed such forces, as they thinke necessary: And whereas your admiral Van Tromp is come to those islands with a considerable fleet of ships, manned with great numbers of mariners and souldiers, and doth remeine neere those islands and the westerne partes of England, without discoveringe his cleare intentions therein, pretindinge it is to compell satisfaction for injuries done by the guarrisons in that island and the ships belongeinge thereunto unto the ships of your subjects, but without limitation of the meanes, wheither by possessinge himselfe of those islands, or otherwife: And whereas it is usuall for all states, who are in friendship and amitie, comeinge neare or upon the territoryes of each other in such manner as aforesaid, for avoydeinge of jealousies, to assure those, who are concerned, of the causes and motives, which induced them thereunto, which your lordships have not done to the parliament of this comonwealth of England in this expedition, nor given them any intimation of what is intended by soe great a fleet approachinge soe neare and in such suspicious manner to their territories and dominions; the parliament of the comonwealth of England hath therefore by expresse order comanded us to declare to your lordships, that this your proceedinge is understood by the parliament (as they yet have the knowledge of it) to be disagreable to the amitie and friendship betweene the two states, and to the comon lawes and customes of nations; in regaurd whereof wee doe desire the intentions and meaneinge of your lordships in this expedition may be clearely and tymely manifested, and assurance given, that the said fleet, in attemptinge to right the subjects of your lordships of the said injuries, may act nothinge to the prejudice of the commonwealth of England in honour or interest, to avoyd all occasions of difference or disputes betweene the two states.
A letter of Oliver Cromwell to Archbald Johnston of Warriston, then lord register, concerning the records of Scotland.
Upon the perusall off the passes formerly given for the safe passing of the publick writts and registers of the kingdome of Scotland, I doe thinke they owght to be restored; and they shall be so, to such persons as yow shall appointt to ressave them, with passes for persons and vessells, to cary them to such plaice, as shall be appointed, so that it be done within ane moneth nixt following. I heirwith send yow a pass for your servant to go into Fyse, and to returne with the other clarks; and rests
The lord register's answer to the foregoing letter.
On Saturneday at night very laite I receaved your lordship's letter, with ane passe to my servant, whereanent I am ready to attend your lordship, whensoever ye sall command me, and your leasur may permitt. Your lordship knowes I am bot a servant to these, who imployes me, and so cannot without thair expresse warrand redelyver the passes, which I delyvered once to them anent the registars, and whereof the king, the parliament, and the commission of the church hath keeped the (fn. 1) principles, and hath intrusted me only with some of them to be shewen to your excellency for the recovery of the registers; bot if your lordship presse it again, I shall send it over, and receave their directions, which is all your lordship knows a servant intrusted by them can doe.
My lord, I hop your lordship will not restrict the former passes, and far lesse to a moneth
nixt following; seeing your lordship, or any whom ye shall appoint, shall see me use all
possible diligence (upon the comeing of the clerks to know and receive every man his oune
registers) to dispatch them to the places, whereunto they fall be appointed. If one week
could doe the bussines, I should be very glad; if contrary wynds and other necessary accidents (which will be seen to your lordship, or in your absence to the governor of Leith) shall
any wayes retard and imped, I am certainly perswaded your lordship in justice and equitie
wold not suffer any advantag to be taken therefra, in a mater concerning publict records,
which useth to be inviolable in all warres. The sooner that the ship be redelyvered, she
wold be the sooner ready; for I hear thear is a laik struck up in her, and is not weell knowen
whear it is. Your lordship be pleased to direct the governor of Leith to let on of the
clerks, who is in toun, goe see his owne, that he may in the mean tyme be makeing them
ready; and so the lyk to the rest, as they shall come. I desir your lordship's secretary may
mend the passe, by adding some other clerks names, which he had forgotten, and adding
the alternative of an servant for every one of the clerks, becaus themselves, it may be, cannot come all over, in regard of the parliament's sitting doun on Thursday nixt. So craveing pardon for troubling your excellency with so long a letter of so evill a hand, and being
most willing to attend your excellency, whensoever ye shall command me, to clear my simple meaning and plain way of dealling from all mistacks or objections, I remain
Edinburgh, 14 Apryl, 1651.
To their excellencies the lords ambassadors extraordinary of the commonwealth of England.
Whereas even a just and righteous cause doth stand in need of the assistance of friends, we take the liberty to apply to your excellencies, and be troublesome to you, humbly requesting, that your excellencies would be pleased, so and when your excellencies shall think fittest, to intercede in our behalf with the parliament and commonwealth of England, that we may get satisfaction concerning our demands on the parliament, which may be seen more fully by the deduction hereunto annexed; whereby your excellencies will observe, how illegally the ship called the Sampson, captain Remens Croeff, was seized by the English in the year 1646, then lying in the river of Limerick, contrary to the contract made before the fort of Bonratti; which said ship does still continue in the service of the said commonwealth as a ship or man of war, altho' there is still a law-suit depending on that account, as appears out of the deduction for that purpose hereunto annexed.
Further we have a pretension on the said parliament and commonwealth of England for 19641 l. 17 s. sterl. good money, advanced and furnished in the year 1644 for the buying of ammunition of war, for both the kingdoms of England and Scotland; to wit, 3641 l. 17 s. sterl. on an ordinance of the parliament of England for 50000 l. sterl. assigned on goldsmiths hall, whereof the greatest part of the remainder is paid, pursuant to the ordinance No A, made in behalf of Mr. Thomas Cunningham, which debt the said Cunningham has made over to us, as appears by the copy of the said transfer No B annexed hereunto in English, together with the Dutch translation.
Further, the parliament of Scotland has given us an assignment on the parliament of England in the year 1649 for a sum of 16000 l. sterl. pursuant to the deed No C, which we were obliged to accept, since we saw that the affairs between England and Scotland begun to take another turn; and the more, because the said debt was contracted with the knowledge of the commonwealth of England, as also because England did actually owe the same to Scotland; to which England now objects, alledging, that all the said debts were now cancelled, by the invasion of the Scots in England, attempted under the earl of Hamilton, which however is nothing to us, since we trusted to England and not to Scotland. Wherefore we the petitioners humbly request your excellencies, that you would be pleased to do whatever lays in your power, that we may obtain what is justly due to us, especially the restitution of the ship and the above mentioned 3641 l. 17 s. sterl. which is a liquidated demand, for which an ordinance was granted. And whereas a definitive sentence is every day expected touching the ship, it is our most humble request, that your excellencies would be pleased to bring it about, that we may get our just pretensions, satisfaction, and complement of justice, &c.
A memorial from the English embassadors to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
Your lordships haveing the 31st of March last, new style, appointed commissioners to confer with and receive from us such overtures, as we should make, and to make report thereof unto your lordships; we did at a conference with the said commissioners upon the 4th of this instant deliver in a paper, whereby we did tender the friendship of the commonwealth of England unto your lordships, and propounded, that the amity and good correspondence, which hath anciently been between the English nation and the United Provinces, be not only renewed and preserved inviolably, but that a more strict and intimate alliance and union be entred into by them, whereby there may be a more intrinsical and mutual interest of each in other, than hath hitherto been, for the good of both. Whereunto at a second conference with the said commissioners upon the 8th instant we received from your lordships by way of answer, that you did likewise offer the amity of this state to the commonwealth of England; and were willing not only to renew and observe inviolably the union and good correspondence, which in all times hath been between the nation of England and the United Provinces, but also to make with the republic of England a treaty on the common interest; which answer not being (as we conceive) satisfactory to the latter part of our paper, whereby a nearer union than formerly hath been between these two commonwealths was propounded, we declared our dissatisfaction therein to the said commissioners, and insisted that your lordships would fully declare yourselves in that particular, and that the same might be done with all speed. But having since that time received no further answer to our said paper, we cannot but express our sense of so great loss of time in a business so much importing the good of both states; and we do hereby let your lordships know, that the parliament doth expect a speedy issue of this treaty so sincerely intended for the good of both; and accordingly hath assigned us but a short time for our stay here, a great part whereof is already spent without having obtained from your lordships any clear or satisfactory answer to our first general proposition. And therefore as we did to your commissioners, so we do hereby again to your lordships insist, that your lordships will clearly and speedily declare yourselves concerning that part of our proposition, whereunto we have as yet received no satisfactory answer. And we further desire, that on your lordships part there may be such a proceeding upon this whole treaty, that no time may be lost therein.
A memorial of the English embassadors in Holland to the States General.
The lords the states may rest assured, that the commonwealth of England will afford proportionable advantages to this state for what the parliament shall insist upon in this treatye to be received from your lordships. And in order thereunto, wee desire to knowe, what perticulars they hold fitt to propound on their parts for the compleateing of the confederacy and alliance mentioned in the last paper.
A memorial of the English embassadors in Holland to the States General.
High and potent lords,
Upon the 4th of April last wee sent you a paper conteyneinge a complaint against Edward prince palatine, of a high dishonour and abuse by him done to the parlyament of the commonwealth of England in our persons; and since by two other papers have further demanded justice against him for the same. But not knowinge, that as yet he hath bene punished accordinge to his demerit, and being speedily to returne to England, wee desire to receive satisfaction from your lordships concerninge the same, to the end wee may be enabled to give an account of that bussinesse to the parlament, who doe expect reparation therein.
Mr. Fisher to the council of state.
SI empre jusque que hauian de serbir de poco las diligencias de V. M. sobre la restitucion del que el rey mi Sr mando se deisre a V. M. para disponer su tornada la buelta de Ingalaterra quando trattava della, par eciendome, que de buena rason no deuia in podia ser admittida la proposicion y a su ha succedido, pues hauiendo dada quenta a su magestade della sue servido de mandarme responder que por ningum caso se biniesre en lo de soluer & dinero (como V. M. lo ha deseado y propuesto) aun quando la cantitad fuera mayor. Auisilo a V. M. y que ha complido testamente V. M. con su commission. Dios garde de &c. A. 23 de A. Abril de 1651.
You may please to acquaint both the corrigidor and alcalde mayor, that the parliament intends not to make this a law business; and that after their right unto them being presented, if they shall not have justice, you are to give over troubling yourself any more. That if the parlament demande the artillery, cables, &c. of the said ships, 'tis because they conceave them to be theirs, not because they stand in need of them. They doe not aske them given, but restored; aiming therein at their honour, not at their profitt. I wonder his majestie should thinke of restoring them unto prince Rupert, who soe criminally comitted that act of hostility in his port of Velez Malaga; whereas coll. Blake, having the same opportunity the other had, would not make use of it, chusing rather not to revenge himselfe of his enemie, then thereby to offend his friend.
As in my last, soe I againe advise you, that . . . said men of warre must necessarily be . . . . of the eleven sayle that revolted from . . . . . . . . in the Downes or else prises . . . . . . by them since, be they one, or be they . . . . . the parliament in all equity they belong . . . . . . corrigidor desire proofe thereof you may . . . . . that the ships doe not countervaile the . . . . but that P. Rupert had noe ships or any command at sea before the abovesaid revolt, is manifest to all the world. However if a publique minister of the parliament may not be beleeved in a matter of soe small concernment, that you will advise their honors thereof, and expect their answer. If his majestie (doubting whether the parliament are able to establish and maintaine their present government or noe) resolve to expect the final successe of all, and accordingly dispose of the ships either to them or to Rupert, he would have . . . . . . thankes given him, although he shall . . . . afterwards have delivered them to the . . . But if he deliver them now, they . . . . ., parte, it would be but a . . . . . . parliament on their parte would . . . . . . it is a gift I am confident that . . . . . . be slacke herein; and if any thing hinder the parliament's satisfaction, it will be his minister's coveteousnes, which is the root of all injustice. Sirs, if you think it may be for the better effecting and understanding of the business, you may deliver unto them copys of what I write you in Spanish. Altho' I seeme to be plaine with them, I am confident the parliament will approve thereof, who desire, that justice should be demanded, not begged.
Yours 22 past received by this estasetta, and did signifie the contents thereof to the veedor of his majestie, who hath a comission to put in security the artilleirie that belonged to the men of warre wracked in this port, who telleth me, that he hath order to deliver them to the partie of the parliament of England, paying the charge of what hitherto he hath acted; which hath been only the weighing of two brasse gunns, and halse of one, that was splitt, and three anchors. I shall use all dilligence possible to weigh the remainder, and be diligent to comply with my obligation in service of the state of England, and give you notice of what succeedeth.
That he should procure to get the said artillery, ancors, &c. into his possession, as soone as possible, and with the least charge as may be; and afterward follow coll. Blake's order therewith, who will doubtless very suddainly be on those coasts, and take order for the payment of his disimbursments. I thanked him alsoe for his care in solliciting the busines, and promised him to acquaint your honours therof.
A L Sr don Luis de Haro di quenta como tenia orden de mi parliamento para partirme de este corte y medios para executarlo. Y quando besè a V. M. la mano sobre el dispacho ultimo que V. M. me remetio, suspendi & da quenta V. M. per averlo de haver por este su ex. me respondio participale la orden a V. M. y que por su quenta corresia la brevedao d'el dispacho. La dilacio que tendre en abede . . . . . Las ordenes de mi parlamento (que tengo . . . . . redas en la que V. M. ma hies favor . . . . . nanna) sera le que si dilat . . . . . de su magestade don Grey. Alta . . . . . sabido tambien compler la . . . . . tendido de su magestade para assist . . . . . hospedaje (que ha corrido por su . . . . . que si se le ordenara me acompan . . . . . el puerto, suera particular favor entre que reconosco haver recebido. Ide Dios V.M. como deseo. Madrid a 2 de Mayo de 1651.
Mr. Fisher to the council of state.
May it please your honours,
My last was of the 24th past, recommended unto Mr. Edward Prig of Bilboa, to send by the quickest and safest conveyance, and advising the needfull. And amongst other things I acquainted your honours, that I had writ to don Ger. de la Torre concerning my order to goe home, and leave to depart; coppy of which letters I sent your honors then; and now I send your honors coppy of his answer thereunto, which I have received since. By which it will appeare, how my security is slighted; and by my answer (which goeth herewith) how ill I have taken it. My answer is short, and modest, and, I hope, as it should be; and when his majestie shall deny me security, I doubt not (having money to that purpose) but to provide sufficiently for it.
I have heard his majestie and councell tearme the parliament proud and peremptory in their demaund of execution upon Mr. Ascham's murtherers. I am sure their honors doe well in it, being like therby to gaine their ends; for Spaine is in a miserable condition without our friendship; the want wherof might without a miracle (for more difficult things have come to passe) in very short time, produce a rebellion in the Indies, Scicily, Naples, and Milan, which rebellion (espetially if the king should die without a sonne) would easily induce these grandees to create in this monarchy as many kings as kingdomes.
As soone as I have seene M . . . . . body I shall forthwith put my instructions in execution. I doubt not but your honors believe that the king is a nuetralist, and that he will governe himselfe according to the successes, that the parliament have this yeare in Scotland; and will take them for his rule in the freeing or executing of Mr. Ascham's murderers, wherby will be manifested, that his pretence of having hitherto done what he could, hath been only compliment and deceipt, not reall.
Whereas I intended to returne 900 pieces of eight unto whom I received the 1500 pieces of eight, I have since resolved to bring it in specie, or take a bill of exchange for it of Mr. Boone of Seville, which of the two I shall find most convenient. For if I deliver it to the merchant abovesaid, I believe it will not come to your honors hands in four or five months. Noe news here. Soe I humbly kisse your honors hands.
The English embassadors to the States General.
Having at the time of our last conference with your lordships received a command from the parliament to return into England, which was then communicated to you; and the parliament since that time having been advertised of the answers given by the States General to the papers delivered to your lordships, and of the desire of the States General therein mentioned, and likewise of the states provincial of Holland, for our continuance here until the present treaty may be brought to further perfection; in expectation that justice will be done, and reparation given to the commonwealth of England for the affronts and indignities, that have been offered unto us their embassadors since our residence here, and to manifest with how great sincerity that treaty was begun on their part, have thought fit to continue us here for a short time, which on our part shall be improved to the uttermost for the compleating the treaty already so happily begun, hoping the same will be done by your lordships.
Proposals made by the English embassadors at the Hague to the States General.
By our paper of the 27th of April last, we propounded to your excellencies, that the two commonwealths may be consederated friends, joined and allied together for the defence and preservation of the liberties and freedom of the people of each, against all whomsoever that shall attempt the disturbance of either state by sea or land; or be declared enemies to the freedom and liberty of the people living under either of the said governments; whereunto your lordships have given no satisfactory answers. We therefore in the first place desire your lordships consent to that proposition, whereby it may be made one of the articles of the treaty.
We propound, that neither of the two commonwealths shall make, do, act, treat of, or attempt any thing against the other, or the people of either, in any place, either at land or sea, or in any of the havens, creeks, ports, or fresh waters of either, upon any occasion whatsoever; nor that either of them, or the people of either, give, yield, or afford any aid, counsel, favour, or assent, that any thing shall be done, treated of, or attempted by any others whomsoever, to the injury, prejudice, or loss of the other, or people of either, but shall expresly and with effect contradict, gainsay, oppose, and really hinder all whomsoever abiding or dwelling within either of the commonwealths respectively, or shall be under the power, that shall act, do, treat of, or attempt any thing against either of the commonwealths, or the people of either.
We propound, that neither of the commonwealths, or the people abiding, inhabiting, or dwelling within either of them respectively, or within their power, shall yield, give, or afford any aid, counsel, or favour to the enemies or rebels of either; and the said respective commonwealths shall expresly, really, and with effect hinder any inhabiting, dwelling, or abiding within either of them, or within their power, from giving any aid or assistance unto such enemies by men, money, shipping, arms, ammunition, victual, or other goods of contraband; by sea or land, and all ships, money, arms, ammunition, victual, or other goods of contraband of any person or persons whatsoever, that shall be provided, employed, or made use of, contrary to the intent of this article, shall be confiscate and forfeited to the respective commonwealth; and the person or persons, that shall wittingly and willingly do, attempt, counsel, or be employed therein, shall be declared enemies to both commonwealths, and shall suffer the pains and penalties of treason within the commonwealth, where the offence shall be committed.
We propound, that the two commonwealths shall truly and bona side assist each other, as need shall require, against the rebels or enemies of either, at sea and land, with men and ships, at the cost and expences of the party requiring the same, in such proportion, and in manner, and upon such terms and conditions, as the two states shall agree, and the present occasion require.
We propound, that neitheir of the commonwealths, or the people of either, may receive into either of their jurisdictions, countries, lands, ports, creeks, or precincts any person or persons, that are or shall be declared by either of the commonwealths to be enemies, rebels, or fugitives of the other commonwealth; nor shall yield or afford to any such declared enemy, rebel, or fugitive within the places aforesaid, or otherwhere, though out of their territories, countries, lands, ports, creeks, or precincts, any aid, counsel, lodging, entertainment, soldiers, ships, money, armies, ammunition, or victual; nor shall either of the states permit such enemies, rebels, or fugitives, to be received by any person or persons whatsoever into their jurisdictions, countries, lands, ports, creeks, or precincts; or shall suffer any aid, counsel, lodging, entertainment, soldiers, ships, money, arms, ammunition, or victuals to be given, yielded, or afforded unto such enemies, rebels, or fugitives, but shall expresly and effectually oppose, withstand, and really hinder the same.
We propound, that if either of the said commonwealths shall by their public and authentic letters give notice, signify, or declare to the other commonwealth any persons to be their enemies, rebels, or fugitives, and that they shall be or reside in the others jurisdictions, territories, dominions, ports, or precincts, or therein be hid or shelter themselves, then that commonwealth, which shall receive such letters, or unto which such notice shall be given, and declaration made concerning such rebels, enemies, or fugitives, shall within the space of twenty eight days, to be reckoned immediately from the day of the aforesaid notice given, charge and command such rebels, enemies, and fugitives to withdraw and depart out of their jurisdictions, territories, dominions, lands, and precincts, and every of them; and if such rebels, enemies, or fugitives shall not withdraw and depart as aforesaid, within the space of fifteen days after such charge and command given, then they shall be punished with death, and loss of lands and goods.
We propound, that no rebel or declared enemy of the commonwealth of England shall be received into or be suffered to abide in any of the castles, towns, ports, creeks, or other places privileged or not privileged, which the prince of Orange, princess Mary the relict of William late prince of Orange, or any other person, of what degree soever, have or hereafter shall have or possess by any title whatsoever within the dominions and jurisdictions of the United Provinces, nor suffered by the said prince, princess, or any other person to be received into or abide therein; neither shall the lords states of the United Provinces permit or suffer in any of the places aforesaid any assistance, counsel, or favour, in ships, men, money, victuals, or in any other manner to be given by the said prince or princess, or any other person, to any such rebel or declared enemy, but shall openly and expresly prohibit and hinder the same. And if the prince of Orange and princess Mary, or any other person or persons living or remaining in the jurisdiction of the United Provinces, or under their power, do to the contrary hereof, then as well the said prince and princess, and all and every such other person and persons so doing as aforesaid, shall for their respective lives forfeit and lose all such castles, towns, villages, lands, and other places, which they or any of them shall at such time have or pretend to have by any title whatsoever; and likewise that no rebels or declared enemy of the states of the United Provinces shall be received into, or be suffered in any the castles, towns, ports, or other places, privileged or not privileged, which any person or persons, of what degree or quality soever he be, have or shall hold or possess within the commonwealth of England or dominion thereof, by any title whatsoever, nor suffered by any such person or persons, or any other, to be received thereinto, or abide therein.
Neither shall the commonwealth of England permit or suffer in any of the places aforesaid any counsel, assistance, or favour, in ships, men, money, victuals, or in any other manner to be given by any such person or persons, of what degree or quality soever he be, to any such rebel or declared enemy, but shall openly and expressly prohibit and hinder the same. And if any of the people of the commonwealth of England, or under their power, shall do or attempt any thing to the contrary hereof, that every such person or persons shall for their respective lives forfeit and lose all such castles, towns, villages, lands, and other places, which they or any of them shall at such time have or pretend to have by any title whatsoever.
The English ambassadors to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
The commissioners appointed by your lordships to treat with us at a conference the 2d of this instant, new stile, did, in answer to a former paper of ours, deliver unto us a paper containing your lordships resolutions to renew all ancient treaties, and especially that fundamental and essential one made for a perpetual consederation between the two nations in the year 1495; and to correct and amplify the same according to the present time and affairs, in the best form and manner, whereby an agreement might be made for the mutual defence and conservation of the liberty and franchise of the two commonwealths, and of the commerce and navigation reciprocal, and of the common interests, against all that should endeavour the disturbance of either of them; and that you had to that end appointed your commissioners to make a beginning, who also had power, according to the desire of one of our papers, to make such propositions, as might serve for compleating the intended intimate and more strict alliance and union between the two states; desiring us for this purpose to stay here, while the same could be persected absolutely. We, to avoid length and other difficulties, did leave the ways and method intended by ourselves, and make choice of this, which your lordships chalked out to us; and accordingly at our last conference with your commissioners we made seven propositions, six whereof were contained in the treaty of 1495, corrected only to the present time and affairs; and did expect, that your lordships commissioners should have come qualified with powers to treat with us upon our propositions, and to make unto us propositions on your parts, whereby the matter of the present treaty being prepared by them, might have been sitted for the more speedy conclusion thereof. But finding, that at the said conference your commissioners did neither treat with us upon the propositions delivered to us, nor delivered unto us any propositions on the behalf of your lordships, and that we have not since that time, which is now eight days ago, had any answer to our propositions, which being grounded upon the old treaty propounded by yourselves, we conceive would not have required so long time of debate, nor all this while received any of your lordships part; we cannot but remind your lordships of the shortness of the time, which the parliament have limited for our stay here, which by a slow proceeding will be spent, before any thing considerable will be done; which when your lordships in your great wisdom shall consider, and that divine providence shall so order things in both commonwealths, that so fit an opportunity as this for the effecting of the said alliance and union between them hath not heretofore been administred, nor is likely hereafter to be, if this be neglected; with this also, that the parliament gave their consent for our continuance here upon your lordships desires exprest in that paper, as also at the instance of the states provincial of Holland, your lordships will think fit to put this treaty on your parts in such a way, as may speedily bring the same to a good and happy effect.
Queen of Bohemia to the States General.
High and mighty lords, our very dear and very good friends,
You are already very well informed, that the deceased king of great Britain, our most honoured father, did appoint us a certain sum of money by the year for our maintenance during our exile; which maintenance was confirmed and continued to us by the deceased king, our most dear brother, under the great seal of England, the payment of which hath not failed us before the troubles befallen in England, and by this means our creditors and furnishers here at the Hague have been duly satisfied from time to time. And altho' the said troubles had caused some interruption of the payment, nevertheless our creditors and furnishers aforesaid have for all that continued to supply us with their wares and provisions, partly upon consideration, that the parliament since the event of the said troubles hath confirmed our said maintenance, and reduced it to ten thousand pounds sterling yearly, partly upon the firm hope they have been always in, that the arrears should be paid to us by virtue of the grants and acts past thereupon. Therefore also we gave them the 21st March 1650 our assignation and consent in writing, that they might demand and receive their payment of the arrears. We intreated since Mr. Schaep by our letters of the 20th of October following, to afford his good offices in England to obtain their satisfaction; and the 30th of November we did desire the lords states of Holland to cause new instances to be made by the said Mr. Schaep for our creditors and furnishers; and you were pleased to give the seventh of February last to the lord Joachim, your ambassador, a very express order for the same business. And the 4th of this month we did subscribe the list, which the said creditors and furnishers presented to us of what every one of them pretendeth to be due to him, having from time to time supplied us upon credit (as is abovesaid) their wares and provisions upon the kingly grants and acts of parliament, whom by our declaration annexed under the said list we have desired to give order for the payment of the said arrears. Being then informed, that you are desired to enter into an alliance, and that you are resolved to enter into a treaty, we do intreat and pray you most affectionately and very instantly in this occasion of importance, to mediate by your authority, and by insertion of a special article in the treaty (or otherwise as you shall find it fit) the payment of our said arrears, that our creditors and furnishers, who are your subjects and fellow-citizens, may find their satisfaction therein. And if by your favourable interposing our said maintenance may be restored to its course, till we be able to enjoy the revenue of our jointure in the Palatinate, that will be to us a special help and comfort, which will free us from importuning you hereafter in our particular; being the thing which we intreat you, and which we also desire most affectionately, upon the most certain confidence that we have of your sincere intention towards us, which doth not suffer us to enlarge ourselves more upon this matter, but to assure you of our true acknowledgment, and of the desire we have to be able to requite so many obligations laid upon us by you by all your good offices; and expecting the occasion and opportunity to effect it, we remain perfectly,
Copy of the order of the king of France given for the free commerce of the Hollanders till a farther treaty be made. (fn. 2)
By the king
His majesty being willing, by the advice queen regent his mother, to give remedy, upon many complaints made to him (in the name of the lords States General of the United Provinces of the Low Countries, by the lord Boreel their embassador) that, since the treaty of the commerce made with them in April 1646, for four years only, is expired, many French captains, have armed to sea, and carried into the ports of the kingdom many of the states ships under several pretences, which hath occasioned them to be, according to the rigour of the laws of the land, adjudged lawful prize; and his majesty desiring to express on this occasion his favour and affection to the said lords states, and favour their commerce in such fort, that they may hereafter continue it with more security and liberty, till it be provided to it by another order, hath made and doth make most special inhibitions and defense to all captains and officers, commanding his men of war, not to take or bring into the ports of France, the Holland ships laden with merchandizes, though they should belong to the enemies; provided, that they do not carry men for their service, and that there shall not be found in the ships any merchandizes of counterband, as powder, and all manner of arms and munitions, horses or equipage serving to the war, in which case the said ships with all their loading shall be of lawful prize; and the same shall be done concerning those that shall have brought any succours and men, corn and victuals into any place besieged by the arms of his majesty, who doth give warning and order to the duke of Vendosme, great master, chief, and superintendant general of the navigation and commerce of France, to have published in all the ports of France the present prohibitions, that no man may pretend any cause of ignorance, and the same to cause to be punctually observed, and those to be sharply punished who shall offend against them.
Extracted out of the register of the resolutions of the high and mighty lords the States General of the United Provinces.
There was received a letter from the queen of Bohemia written here in the Hague the 29th of this month, desiring, for the reasons therein expressed, that their lordships, either by inserting an article in the treaty, which is about to be made with England, or or otherwise, would please to be a means, that her majesty may get payment of what hath been heretofore granted her for her maintenance by king James, and since confirmed by king Charles the first under the great seal of England, which maintenance was also confirmed by the parliament during the troubles, and reduced to 10,000 l. sterling, that her majesty's creditors and deliverers of wares may be paid out of it.
Whereupon being deliberated, it is found good, and resolved, that the said letter shall be put into the hands of the lords Ommeren and others, their lordships deputies for treating with their excellencies the ambassadors of the republic of England, for to mediate and operate the said business according and in conformity to the said desire.
Boreel, the Dutch ambassador at Paris, to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
For to get remedy against the inconveniencies happened about Rochel, in the taking of the ship the St. John, and which were feared from the ships now out of the marshal of Meilleraye's, whereof I advised you by the former; and because that business was of highest importance and of great consequence, therefore I thought needful to desire audience of her majesty ever since the 26th of the last month; in the mean time I have made addresses to every one, and complained of it every where. And for as much as I have hitherto been sa'n to spend all my time in desiring the restitution of the many ships and goods, which are daily taken by the French, and I could never bring them to restitution, but there are daily more taken, so that this, besides the great prejudice and damage, would be an endless work; therefore I have used my best endeavours to get at least some cessation therein, which I fortuned to get presently, so as the king the 30th of May granted an act for freedom of the Low Country commerce and navigation; so that the provisional treaty for the time of four years expiring the 18th day of April 1650, shall be followed and observed, till a further permanent treaty be made upon it. Consequently that henceforward the Low Country ships of your lordships subjects may freely sail and lade all manner of Wares, yea such as belong to the enemies of France, without being taken or brought up; provided that the said Low Country ships may not take in, or carry men, who are in service to the king of Spain, nor any contraband goods or wares, which are expressly named; to wit, powder, muskets, or other forts of arms and ammunition, no horses, nor furniture for war, and may not bring in any men, corn, or victuals into towns besieged; even as the particulars are mentioned in the said act, which they delivered to me, and which I send herewith to your lordships, and which the duke of Vendosme is ordered to see published, as admiral of France, in all the havens thereof; as also the mareschal of Meilleraye is ordered to do in the province of Bretagne. Your lordships in your high wisdom may please to consider, whether it will be needful, that this act of the king be made common every where by printing it; and I will urge the publishing of it here in France. The king hath also written to the earl of Angnon about the ship the St. John, master John Elkens, which was taken by the ships of the duke of Vendosme, that such inconveniencies may cease for the future; a copy whereof goes herewith. We must wait to fee, whether it will have such an operation on the earl as is desired.
The other day I had audience of the queen, and there made my proposition, which I delivered to her majesty in the hands of the earle of Brienne, with the annexed note of the particulars. And because his majesty's former inclination, which I have mentioned above, made me think it needful for the service of the country to make some further clearing thereof, therefore I spake to her majesty about it, and did in substance desire, what I had before put in writing upon every particular in the enclosed note, whereof your lordships shall herewith receive a copy, &c.
Mr. Thurloe to Mr. Walter Frost secretary in the council of state.
Our bussinesse here will afford me nothinge to trouble you with by this post, haveinge not heard one word from the assembly since my last to you. If wee had not by a good providence of God got ane opportunitie to put this people to a triall by our beinge continued here, they might by their last paper, wherein they offered the treaty of 1495, and their large professions, past with the credulous people of England for some kinde of honest men and good neighbours; but upon this occasion I am confident they appeare to be perfectly of the Scots mould, by converse with whom and the French they have learnt the art of makeing huge professions, and in such a manner, that men are almost necessitated to beleeve them; and at the fame tyme intend to performe noe more of them then apparently stands with their owne advantage; which yet I am confident they will not arrive at upon this occasion; and I hope God will give wisdome to my lords fo to manadge their farewell in that manner, that the commonwealth of England shall not loose either in honor or interest upon this occasion. The deputies here in the assembly seeme to agree as to their owne militia, and their other affaires; and thereupon grow confident of their owne estates; but I doe not see that the people are satisfyed with their superiours, nor with the manadgement of affairs here, as appeares by a storye from Middleburgh, which you will have at large to the councell, and therefore shall not repeate it unto you. I thinke what remaynes for us to begge of you for the future as to this affaire, is, that our shipps may be hastened, and the 2d bill of exchange in, Mr. alderman Aleyne's hand sent unto us. Some other particulers there are in the publique letter, which I shall not mention here, because you will see them there. I am obliged to be, sir,
English embassadors at the Hague to the council of state.
Your affaires here have not beene at all promoted since our last, wee not haveing as yet received any answer to our propositions, nor have they as yet delivered theirs unto us, nor doe wee knowe from the assemblie, commissioners, or any others, what resolutions they intend to fall upon. All that wee can privatelye learne is, that the concept or draught, which by the last wee sent unto you, is like to comprehend what they intend to doe in this treatie as well on your part as their owne; which if they shall not very much inlarge in what concernes England, and lay downe many thinges, which they expect from you on their part, wee conceive your lordships will receive little satisfaction in what is like to be done here, nor thinke that they have performed what they held out unto you at the time, when you enlarged our continuance here; their paper then sent unto you declaringe their intentions to resume the matter of the treatye of 1495, whereby the same might be fitted for the present times, and in order to a nearer union, and likewise the point of tyme that they had given power to their commissioners in order thereunto to deliver propositions unto us, which is now above six weeks since. The post of this weeke is not yet come, by reason whereof your lordships directions concerning some of the articles of the treaty 1495, which by the last you told us were in debate of, are not come to our hands. In case the commissioners shall come to treate with us, wee shall accordinge to the best of our understanding, through God's blessing, doe what we shall conceive will tend most to your service. My lords, there are now but 14 dayes remeyne of the time you last limitted us unto, and hope your lordships have thought of ships to be with us before the end of that tyme for our transport hence; and desire that those you send may come together, that wee may not be forced to transgresse in point of tyme; which wee the rather write, in respect that having appointed 3 ships to come to us the last time you cal'd us hence, there came but two, and one of them a fortnight after the other. Concerninge the businesse of the lord Craven, whereof wee sent you the papers by the last, there have beene some orders since made in the generall assemblie thereupon, and a letter resolved to be sent unto the parliament for suspension of that judgement; and likewise that their commissioners shall speake with us about it. But concerninge that and the queene of Bohemia's buissinesse, wee have not yet any publicque notice from the assemblie, which when wee shall have, wee shall, wee hope, doe what shall be sitting a buissinesse of that nature.
Wee have herewith sent your lordships what last weeke fell out at Middleburg in Zealand, and shall noe further coment thereupon, but that the minister Appollonius hath thereby sufficiently consuted Lantsbergen. This Appollonius out of his publique zeal to the Scotts presbitery came on purpose to the assemblie at Westminster to assist and congratulate that partie.
At Utrecht there hath beene an election of magistrates this Whitsontyde, where the burges have chosen and sworne their new magistrates, who heretofore were sworne by the deputie of the prince of Orange, who haveing three presented to him by the burgers, did use to choose one; and herein they follow the example of Holland.
Appledore, the minister of Sweden, hath written two effectuall letters into Sweden concerneinge the matter, which heretofore wee gave your lordships knowledge of. But in respect the letters from Sweden come but once in six weekes, he hath had noe answer yet. Wee heare for certeine, that one Speeringe, formerly embassador here from Sweden, is sent hither againe, and is on his way; and are informed, that the principall matter of his embassie is to expostulate with this state concerninge their treatie about the Sound. The said Appledore upon Speeringe's comeing is like to be revoked, which hymselfe much desires, as he fayth, to promote the buissinesse before mentioned.
Diverse merchants ships have lately arrived in this countrye from the Caribbee Islands and Virginia, and foure are provideinge for the Caribbee islands from Amsterdam, Horne, Memlicke, and Edam in these parts. Wee shall hereafter give you the names of these ships. Very lately your ships tooke two Dutch ships, the Blew Unicorne, and the Mary, which were bound for the Barbadoes. The Unicorne drowned her letters and bills of ladeinge upon the takeinge of her. The States of Holland here are petitioned to write to Scaep to endeavour with you the restitution of these two ships, upon pretence that they were not bound for the Barbadoes, as in truth they were. Now of late noe Dutch skippers will carry any letters but of such who have goods laden in the ships they goe in; for by this meanes they are sure, that false bills of ladeinge will not be discovered. Wee remeine
A memorial from the English ambassadors at the Hague, to the States General.
Most High And Mighty Lords,
Upon the 17th of April last, old style, we propounded unto your lordships, that the two commonwealths might be consederated friends, joined and allied together for the defence and preservation of the liberties and freedom of the people of each, against all whomsoever that shall attempt the disturbance of either state, by sea or land, or be declared enemies to the freedom and liberty of the people living under either of the said governments; and likewise did then assure your lordships, that the commonwealth of England would afford proportionable advantages to this state for what the parliament should insist upon in this treaty to be received from your lordships; and in order thereunto, we desired to know what particulars you hold fit to propound on your parts for compleating of the intended confederacy and alliance. In answer whereunto your commissioners at a conference of the 2d of May did deliver unto us a paper, containing your lordships resolution to renew all ancient treaties, and especially that fundamental and essential one made for a perpetual consederation between the two nations in the year 1495, and to correct and amplify the same according to the present time and affairs, in the best form and manner, whereby an agreement might be made for the mutual defence and conservation of the liberty and franchises of the two commonwealths, and of the commerce and navigation reciprocal, and of the common interest, against all that should endeavour the disturbance of either of them: and in compliance with your desires therein, we did at a conference with your commissioners the 10/20 of May last make seven propositions, six whereof were grounded on the said treaty, and comprehended no new matter, and the other was but the repeating of that proposition, which we had made in our said paper of the 17 of April, to the end it might be made one of the articles of the treaty; and we made the said propositions only for a beginning, and in order to a further proceeding upon the said ancient treaty; our intention being, as we had before declared, so to manage this treaty, that this state might receive proportionable advantages for what the parliament should receive from your lordships. And we conceived we should have had a speedy answer to our propositions, there being in them nothing new; and likewise that your commissioners would have proceeded with us to treat further upon the rest of the articles of the said ancient treaty of 1495, and upon such other things as either side had to propound; which we waited for and were always ready to do. But notwithstanding that we had by two several papers, one of the 9th of May, and another of the 10th, given notice to your lordships, that our time here was but short and limited, and that your lordships by your said papers of the 2d of May, acquainted us, that your commissioners had power, according to the desire of one of our papers, to make such propositions, as might serve for compleating of the said intended alliance; yet we have not since the said 10th day of May, when we delivered in the said propositions, heard from your lordships, nor from your commissioners, until Saturday last, the 14th of this instant June, old style, when our time was almost expired, and our ships came for our transportation into England; and then we had treaty and conference with your commissioners, at which time we received from them a draught of certain articles of a treaty, which they delivered unto us, containing (as they alledged) an answer to our propositions, and also what your lordships will insist upon in this treaty on your part; and upon reading the said articles during the time of the conference, we found, that they contained in them no answer at all to the 9th, 10th, and 11th of our propositions, nor no satisfactory answer to the 5th, 6th, and 7th. And we did at that time declare to your commissioners our dissatisfaction therein, and by several reasons did demonstrate unto them, by comparing our propositions and your lordships answer thereunto together, that your answer could not satisfy us, and were such as did neither agree with our propositions, nor with the old treaty of 1495, whereupon ours are grounded, and which for substance are the same with that; and therefore we insisted to have a full and clear answer to our said propositions, and that with speed, because our ships were come for carrying us into England, whither we were by command from the parliament to return in a few days; and this we desired them to report to your lordships, and that we could not depart from the substance of the said propositions, they containing in them no new matter, but what in that treaty had heretofore been concluded and agreed upon, and which in pursuance thereof hath been put in execution. And we do not doubt, but that their lordships have accordingly made report thereof unto you; and we having since the said conference seriously read and considered the said answers to our propositions, do find no reason to depart from what we desired your commissioners to report to you as aforesaid; and do therefore insist, that your lordships for the reasons aforesaid will give us a full and speedy answer to our said propositions, that as far as the shortness of the time allotted us for our stay here will give us leave, we may proceed to the other parts of the treaty; our insisting upon an answer to our propositions in the first place being but from the order of the treaty, which doth require, that ours, that were first delivered, should first receive an answer; wherein your lordships will be at no prejudice, because it is agreed and declared, that no article, that shall be concluded and agreed upon by both sides, shall be obligatory unto either, unless the treaty be concluded and brought to effect; and that we have assured your lordships, that this state shall receive proportionable advantages for what the parliament shall receive from you. And in case your lordships had consented to these propositions, the parliament gave us power to propound and bring to effect on their part matters of greater and higher concernment to the good of both commonwealths, which we conceive might have been done within the time limited for our continuance here, had not so much thereof been spent, before we received any answer from your lordships.
Mr. Fisher to the council of state.
May it please your honours,
My last was on the 21st current. By this I hoped to advise your honours of my being on my way homewards, but I shall not now be gone soe soon as I expected, if I goe at all; for his majestie having taken suddaine resolution to review the busines of Mr. Ascham's murderers, hath already condemned, and will speedily execute them. In my next I shall advise your honours the successe.
This king, by a private messenger he sent to the French king, demaunded of him the restitution of what was taken from the duke of Loraine, and a rejection of yeelding protection to Catalonia and Portugal, with promise afterwards to treate of peace; but came backe without the least graunt of any thing.
A declaration of the States General with regard to some of the articles of the treaty.
The States General of the United Netherlands having heard the report of their commissioners, who have been in conference with the lords ambassadors of the republic of England, do declare, that for to give the greater satisfaction to the lords ambassadors on their 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, and 11th propositions, they have wholly condescended, as they do by these presents condescend, to the 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th, and 5th articles of the old treaty of the year 1495, and that ex abundanti in the second article of the said treaty after the words quibusque, shall be added, cujuscunque qualitatis & conditionis esse possunt: expecting now likewise as clear and full an answer from the said lords ambassadors, upon the other articles delivered by their said commissioners into their hands on the 21st of this present month.
The English ambassadors at the Hague to the States General.
High and Mighty Lords,
The letter written unto your lordships by the queen of Bohemia, and your order made thereupon, were delivered unto us by two of the deputies of your assembly, upon the 10/20th day of this instant June; and having read the same, we find, that the scope of the said letter is to engage your lordships to mediate the payment of the arrears of the pension, which the pretends was granted to her by king James her father, and confirmed to her by king Charles her brother, and since continued to her by the parliament, and reduced to 10000l. per annum; and that the same may be continued to be paid to her, for her maintenance, until she be able to enjoy the revenue of her jointure in the Palatinate; and also that your lordships, upon reading the said letter, have thought fit, by an order (wherein you stile Charles, late king of England, Charles the first) to appoint your commissioners, to endeavour and mediate the said business with us, according and in conformity to her request. And having considered the said letter, we do observe, that she doth not express therein, from whom she expects the said payment of the said arrears, and the 10000l. per annum for the future; insomuch that unless your lordships had by your mediation and recommendation in that behalf applied and expounded the meaning of that letter, we could not from any thing therein have thought the commonwealth of England to be intended thereby, or ourselves obliged to take any notice thereof. And altho' it now comes unto us, accompanied with your lordships desires, to whom the parliament of the commonwealth of England, as your good friends and allies, hath been always ready to express all offices of love and friendship; yet considering this case, and the carriage of it by the person, whom it doth concern, we cannot but think it enough for us to say, that when the queen of Bohemia thinks fit to make any address to the parliament of the commonwealth of England for any thing she hath in demand from them, it will be then time enough for her to expect an answer thereunto. But because she labours to possess your lordships, and the good people of this country, her creditors, upon whom, it seems, she hath lived for some years last past, that she hath a great debt owing unto her from the parliament of England, and also a constant maintenance due unto her for the future, for want whereof she cannot satisfy her creditors, nor pay her just debts; endeavouring thereby to draw the clamour thereof upon the parliament, and to draw the people into further engagement for her future subsistence; we thought it convenient further to declare, that although we know not, that either king James her father, or Charles, late king of England, her brother, did make any such grants unto her, as are mentioned in her letter; yet if they did, we are sure, that as they were never ratified or confirmed by act of parliament, so neither do they in law or equity bind the parliament of the commonwealth of England to the payment of what was granted therein, even upon the cafe, which the queen herself in the said letter hath set forth; for Charles the last king of England, under whom she claims, being attainted of high treason, whereby all his lands and other estate whatsoever is forfeited and come to the commonwealth of England, discharged of the said grant, and of all the arrearage pretended to be due upon the same. And if upon her own case there be nothing due to her of right, she hath no reason to expect any thing from the parliament of grace and favour; not only because the relation, that moved the said two kings (she being daughter to one and sister to the other) to allow her that maintenance, is ceased, but also because the queen, by herself and all her relations, hath opposed to her power the commonwealth of England, and upon all occasions expressed the greatest enmity thereunto. And therefore your lordships will be satisfied, that we cannot send the said letter of the queen of Bohemia to the parliament, nor your recommendation thereof; and that not only upon the reasons aforesaid, but also because in your order before mentioned, Charles, the late king of England, is stiled Charles the first, which implies that there is a second Charles king of England; against which expression in the name of the commonwealth of England we do protest, no person whatsoever having any right or title to be king of England.
A remonstrance of the English ambassadors at the Hague to the States General.
High and Mighty Lords,
At a conference the last night with your commissioners, we received a paper from them of the 28th of this instant, new stile, purporting your lordships further answer to our 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, and 11th propositions; and whilst we were in conference, did observe, that your lordships by that paper do take no notice of our 5th proposition, notwithstanding we did demonstrate, as well to your commissioners at our conference the 14/24th instant, as to your lordships by our paper of the 16/26 instant, that you had given no satisfactory answer thereunto in your thirty six articles, or at any time before; nor have your lordships thereby given any answer to our 11th proposition, which is the substance of the 6th article in the old treaty. And as for our 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th propositions, you rather wave, and wholly set them aside, than give any answer to them; and instead thereof have pitched upon the 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th, and 5th articles of the old treaty of 1495, the first whereof was never offered on our part, keeping precisely to the very words of that treaty, without allowing us to use our own words in our own propositions, there being in them no other or new matter, than is contained in the old treaty; nor hath the contrary thereof during this six weeks space, when they were delivered unto you, been objected by yourselves or your commissioners. And notwithstanding your lordships have taken the liberty in what you propound out of the old treaty, to vary not only in words, but in matter and substance; neither is your answer but upon condition, that we should agree to your thirty six propositions, your paper being, that you have condescended to the 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th, and 5th articles of the old treaty of 1495; expecting now likewise as clear an answer from us upon the other articles delivered by the said commissioners unto us the 24th of this present month of June; although the thirty six articles do comprehend, as is aforesaid, divers new things of great advantage to your state; and likewise that your propositions, which your commissioners declared to be grounded on the old treaty, do likewise comprehend new matter of like advantage to you; and therefore we held ourselves obliged not to accept of that answer, but did declare to your commissioners our dissatisfaction thereunto, and that your lordships having spent all the time allotted us for our stay here only in giving us this answer to our propositions, grounded upon the old treaty, which you by your paper of the 2d of May promised to renew, and which we received not till after we had desired audience for taking leave of your lordships this day; it would not now be possible for us to make any proceedings with effect upon things, that were merely new, either on the part of the parliament or your lordships. But yet that we might further manifest our sincere intentions for the promoting of whatever might tend to beget and conserve a good correspondence between the two commonwealths, and improve the small time, that was left us, for those ends; we were willing, and did offer to go over and examine the old treaty of 1495 with your commissioners, and to make and conclude a treaty thereupon, which might from the conclusion and confirmation thereof take effect and be of sorce, and be previous, and in order to a further treaty, wherein all new matters on either side, either for perfecting of the old alliance, settling former differences in trade, or concerning a more intrinsical union, might be treated upon and perfected at sit time and place at present to be agreed upon, and other circumstances concerning that matter, which we were willing on the part of the commonwealth of England to conclude; which not being then accepted of, there remains nothing in our power to do further upon this occasion.
The English ambassadors at the Hague to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
The cause of our present coming hither is to let you know, that the time, which the parliament hath allotted us for our continuance with your lordships, is now determined; and that therefore we have no more to do here, than to take our leaves of your lordships, and to give you thanks for those things, wherein you have expressed any civilities towards us during our residence in your country.
My lords, the parliament hath taken all occasions to express the sincere intentions, which they have always had to the welfare of this state, and as otherwise, so by their former agents and ministers sent unto you, and by this present embassy, the matter and ends whereof have been made known unto you by our first paper of the 20th of March, and would further and more particularly have appeared, in case opportunity had been offered of propounding those other matters, tending to a nearer union, which the parliament had thereupon commanded us to do.
And although their past and present endeavours have not hitherto produced that happy issue, which they desired and expected; yet we hope they will not in the end prove altogether fruitless, but such as through the blessing of God may hereafter be made use of to the effecting of those ends, for which they were intended, the safety and preservation of the true reformed religion, and of the due rights and liberty of the people. And as for ourselves, we desire your lordships to rest assured of our utmost endeavours to promote whatsoever shall tend thereunto, so far as we shall be able.
Declaration of the States General to the English ambassadors at the Hague.
The States General of the United Provinces having heard the report of their commissioners, and afterwards having received and read the writing now delivered to them by the lords ambassadors of England, do declare, that they cannot otherwise conceive, but that they have fully satisfied the said ambassadors on their propositions to the 11th inclufive by the answer yesterday given them; and besides and especially that by the second of our thirty-six delivered articles, they have also satisfied their 5th proposition, yea with the very words of the same; only adding thereunto, as shall be hereafter declared and agreed, as is used to be put in the beginning of all treaties. Also that by granting the second article of the old treaty, and by the 4th of our thirty six articles, we consent to all, that is put by their excellencies in their 6th proposition; as likewise by continuing the third article of the old treaty; and our 5th article doth satisfy their excellencies 7th and 8th propositions, only omitting what their excellencies bring therein besides or deviating from the meaning and text thereof, and which follows in the 3d article and in our 31st; further, that by our not leaving of the text of the 4th article, we do wholly satisfy their tenth proposition, yea in the matter of victuals; and holding to the text of the 5th article, we do wholly grant their 10th proposition; and so holding to the articles of the said old treaty, we go with due distinction, without confounding the qualities of who shall attempt any thing, enemies, rebels, and fugitives; and speaking of contraband wares, where it is fit. For what concerns the 6th article of the old treaty, it is come to cease by the death of the duchess Margaret, and ceasing of her doings; and it is ex abundanti in substance satisfied by the addition of the words in the second article of the old treaty after the word quibusque, viz. cujuscunque qualitatis & conditionis esse possunt. And our commissioners were ready and desired to demonstrate all the same to their excellencies by reading of their said propositions and the said articles of the old treaty, and conserring them; and they are sorry, that their excellencies did themselves decline it. And further it is to be considered, that from the 2d of May laft past their excellencies undertook or agreed to follow the said old treaty, to examine, correct, and amplify it according to the present constitution of times and affairs; and that their excellencies themselves, even on Saturday last, did earnestly desire, that we should first answer them on their propositions, and then go on forward upon the articles of the old creaty, to follow them in order, and then on new articles to be by us added for amplication, and to be by them propounded. That their excellencies themselves did also before desire of our commissioners, that if we had any articles besides the said treaty, they would be pleased to propound them with them, to the end, that if they had not power or command about them, they might get commands about them. That moreover their excellencies did also say, that their propositions unto the 11th inclusive were the most difficult; and that if they had due satisfaction on them, the rest were easier, and which might be more sufferable. That also our commissioners so departed from their excellencies on Saturday last, that if satisfaction were given them on their said propositions, they would also then be pleased to be ready, according to the said trodden path and order, to answer on our thirty six articles. That further their excellencies did in the last conference themselves acknowledge, that it was a good beginning, that there was much done; and their excellencies conceiving, that our answer for the further (and as we conceive full) satisfaction to their propositions was bound to a condition fine qua non, to wit, they were to answer presently to all our articles, as well new as others; they were quite taken off of that mistake by our commissioners, who plainly declared, that it was but a request, and gave them so much time thereunto, as themselves should see good. So that it is strange and unexpected to us, when satisfaction is given to the difficultest propositions, and their excellencies have not in the least answered any articles of ours, that now instead of going on ad faciliora, they are pleased to discontinue the treaty, because that the time is come for departing; and that they must do it to morrow precisely by order of the parliament, alledging that we had heretofore time enough (if we had pleased) to conclude all or go through all; whereas we in five weeks time have effected such instructions in all the provinces for our commissioners, that there was never heard of the like promptitude and expedition in our state; and also it was unusual amongst us and other nations, that any one, that pleases to treat, should of himself set a precise time; and more that great treaties should be bound to time; and yet stranger, that such treaties should be bound to a day, or a few days; it being a thing by us unlooked for, that their excellencies the day before their taking leave would first propose against the said path or order, and to speak of a preliminary treaty. Nevertheless it was all brought so far, that we can declare, that the difficultest point of the old treaty being now over, we conceive it also very easy to proceed principally through the whole old treaty, to accommodate it according to the present occasion, as provisionally; and so also to go on to the new points. Desiring therefore still, as we have done, and so earnestly by our commissioners, that their excellencies would yet please to stay their journey or voyage, and remain here to perfect the said treaty fully in all its said parts, and not to give any occasion, that by the interrupting of it so good a work be hindered, and that what is here so well begun, may as fast as possible be finished here; we on our parts being ready to contribute thereunto, and to cause to be contributed thereunto by our commissioners whatsoever can any ways in reason be required of such a state; and as the United Netherlands, and from such good friends and allies undertaking (or being ready) so to inform the parliament, that we conceive they will take in good part their excellencies stay for the ends aforesaid, and even as before was done.