A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 1, 1638-1653. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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May (1 of 2)
A letter of intelligence from Rome.
Yours I received this morning; by which I see your great preparations for the seas, your quietness at home, and what little you have to do in Ireland and Scotland, as also the inclinations of that state to a peace with the States General; and questionless they have no less, having great reasons for it. It is believed in this court the war between you and Holland will not be lasting (though I must consess wish'd so to be in this court) and the more endeavours shall be used for a peace with the catholic princes; for your peace and consederacy with the States General are formidable to the catholic princes, and you may be confident, you shall find it so, and that R. C. his quarrel in the end may be embraced upon that account, and none other. Here is no public agent or minister now from R. C. but from his mother, the old Scottishman remains always, but is little active at present; for as we understand here, R. C. is diverted from sending any ambassadors hither, lest thereby he might lose his protestant party; and till it shall be known what the dyet of Germany shall do, and whether yours you shall have a peace with the Dutch, no ministers in public are expected from R. C. at this court. This pope is near and covetous, though exteriorly he seems otherwise; and yet when he undertakes any thing, he is both liberal and resolute, but very slow. I confirm to you, notwithstanding all, that it is the resolution hitherto taken, no general peace till Portugal be reduced, and the dyet of Germany ended. If something shall intervene, that may beget new resolutions, time will let us see. It is true the pope and the commonwealth of Venice have by their frequent letters and public ministers mediated for a peace betwixt the two crowns some years past, as they do at this present, but in vain; and so it will be, till what is said shall be done. The difference betwixt this court and the king of France is not so violent, as the ignorant took it to be; neither is it the way of this court to proceed violently now a-days against princes; they are weary of it, and are sensible how much they have lost by it. Some men of the French gamesters and lewd fellows, and also many Italians were taken in the palace of cardinal Mazarin's father, as you heard, and were imprisoned as vagabonds. A greater noise is made of it, but nothing in substantia, for the French ambassador is in the same respects as always, and does his accustomed visits to the pope's palace, and the cardinals, as he has been and is by other visited. Cardinal Medicis (though of the Spanish faction) soon after his arrival visited him with great civility and greater pomp.
The princes of Italy will not obey the pope's commands in suppressing the small convents, as he commanded; and those two matters are somewhat shocking to the authority of this court; but endeavours will be used to reconcile all.
The Portuguese ambassador to Thurloe.
In declaratione a domino generali publicata ultimo Aprilis concilium status institutum est ad ea decernenda, quæ ad pacem & administrationem reipub. pertinent. Et quia nullum hactenus nuncium circa tractationem perfectionemque negotii mei habui, ac ego jampridem accepi a domino meo rege mandatum in regnum redeundi, uti dominationi vestræ perspectum est, peto ab eâ, ut velit ministros meo nomine rogare, quid hac in re mihi faciendum sit. Nihil enim agere volo, nisi ex voluntate domini generalis, ac ex præscripto concilii. Valeat dominationi vestræ. 4 Maii [1653.]
A letter of intelligence from Ratisbon.
I Arrived here about a fortnight since, and did give you one letter of my safe being here. After I was indisposed, and am yet, but better then I have been. You shall not fail weekly to receive from me the best relation I can of affairs here. It is said the queen of Sweden and the marquis of Brandenburg are agreed, that the queen finding the emperor and the electors well united beyond her expectation, converted her intended war into a tepid peace; so the affairs of Germany may do well. R. Carolus his ambassador Wilmot, and his agent Mr. Taylor are still here very busy, but want monies; yet I am informed, some secret collections are a making for them, and their master's business seriously taken into consideration, and consulted of by some deputies appointed for that matter; and you may be confident the princes are for R. C. and that they will endeavour three things after setling their own affairs: The first is to obstruct a peace betwixt you and Holland; the second is to mediate a peace betwixt Spain and France; and the third, to unite all against your commonwealth. This is designed; what effects it shall produce, God knows; but remember you have it seasonably to prevent the plots of your enemies.
The diet by plurality of votes in favour to the Austrian faction was defer'd for a time,
and by the same the 20th of May was assigned for the election of the king of Romans in
Augusta (fn. 1), the marques Castle-Rodriguez, ambassador to his catholick majesty, being very
active for the election without delay, or the French had retarded it at least. All the difficulties offered against the election are totally overcome; the French party pressing, that
first the affairs of the empire should be debated and ended, and after proceed to the election;
but they were overvoted by much; so the Spanish party carries all; and the electors of Saxony and Brandenburg have sent to the emperor, that they will send their ambassadors to
Augusta for the election. All the rest of the electors go in person, but Bavaria, who, and
the elector of Cologne, has appeared more French in this transaction then otherwise, which is
well observed. Yesterday the elector of Trevers is gone from hence to Augusta for the said
election. This day the elector of Mentz is gone, and to morrow go the elector of Cologne
and the Palatine; the day after the ambassadours of Saxony, Bavaria, and Brandenburg.
The 17th instant also the emperor goes, and the 20th is the day of the election; which is
all of news at this time from, sir,
A declaration of the council of state, upon a letter from the States General to general Cromwell.
The letter written by the States General of the United Provinces, and directed unto the parliament of the commonwealth of England, being by Mr. Thilman Aquilius, messenger of the said states, delivered to his excellency the lord general Cromwell, and by him communicated to the council of state now sitting at Whitehall, hath been by them taken into consideration; and finding it to purport an answer to the letter written by the late parliament of this commonwealth to the States General, in reference to the friendly and amicable composing of the differences between these two states, they have thought fit to declare, that notwithstanding the late change and alteration of affairs, which it hath pleased the wise and all disposing hand of God to bring to pass in this commonwealth, they have the same good intentions towards the United Provinces, with sincere desires to put an end to the present war, and to establish a firm and lasting peace between these nations. And the council having upon this occasion perused and considered the said letter, sent by the parliament to the States General, dated the first day of April last, and also to the states of Holland and Westfriesland of the same date; and observing, that the parliament have therein propounded to proceed upon the same grounds for making up the present breach as formerly they offered in answer to that part of the paper of the lord of Hemstede, desiring this state to propound, what might be just and reasonable for composing the present differences, and without other alteration than what is incident to that which hath since happened in this unwelcome war; the council doth hereby declare, that they are willing and ready to proceed with the States General upon the same grounds, as being in their judgment the most likely mean to effect the aforesaid ends. And for the treaty propounded by the said States General in a neutral place by ambassadors on both sides (if it be at all practicable in this present juncture of affairs) it cannot but at best occasion much delay, and create great difficulties, which ought to be avoided in a business so much importing the good of both states. And therefore the States General having not answered what hath been propounded by the parliament, the council have found it necessary on their part also to renew the same offer; and shall be ready forthwith to begin a conference thereupon with such plenipotentiaries, as the States General shall think fit to send on their behalf; declaring further and assuring, that they shall contribute on their part what can be reasonably expected in that negotiation to close up and heal the present wound, and to establish a good understanding between both commonwealths. Dated at Whitehall this sixth day of May 1653.
A letter from the French resident at the Hague.
Till the post may freely and safely pass, there being some disorder at present by reason of the change of government in the intercourse of the letters; till such time, I say, that there be a better and more sincere observation of the public faith, I will forbear at this time to give you any advice of the receipt of your letter of the 9th of this mònth, which you were pleased to write to me; and therefore I will not use any character or ceremony at present to send this to you, than simply recommend it to the master of the post at London, to do with it as he shall think fit. The present constitution of affairs in your parts, where the change happened with great tranquility, doth hold every body in suspence to know, what the event will be, whether good or bad, as well for those without, as those within your borders. It is a business, the effects whereof we must expect with the time and the prudence of those, who are employed in the new form of government. It was in a manner strange to see at this very instant of this change the English fleet to appear, half a league from hence, without making any other noise, than to excite the clamours and lamentations of some poor fishermen, whereof several are carried away. There remains now to see, what will become of their passage towards the north, admiral Tromp being gone thither with a fleet of one hundred good ships, being uncertain of the English designs. Several troops are sent to the ports. These gentlemen here do generally shew great courage, vigour, and conduct; but if there be no other disposition more than human, which doth suffer a continuance of the alterations between these two commonwealths, it were to be desired for the good of them both, that they would agree together, and with their ancient allies; that so the com mon enemy might not profit by their division. I shall not fear of having this opinion to be seen of all those, who have good intentions. Therefore I shall not need to write it in character; and shall always make open profession to be said, sir,
From the Hague the 16th of May 1653. [N. S.]
An intercepted letter of sir Walter Vane.
Att my arrival, by the last post, I writte to you the great change, that arrived heere. Since that, there is nothing of any note but you will find itt in Politicus. A declaration of the general is the considerablest, wherein hee declares hee will governe by a councell of state, till the 70 be assembled out of the countrys, which are to bee in lieu of a representative. This declaration is in his owne name, and signed by himselfe, Oli. Cromwell, which shewes what henceforward hee aymes att. Aquilius is to bee dispatched to daye or to morrowe. I have binne to see him; hee tells mee wee are in no danger of being cashiered; so that, I hope, in September to returne into Holand. I thanke you for your good opinion, and am very likely to make use of itt. I send you heare a letter to the Ringrave, which I would desire you to send him, and, since my sollicitour is in towne, the mony also. This great dispersement of all the ladys out of the Hague will make that towne very melancoly, and the burgers very poore. The newes is heare, that the two fleets are againe in vieu one of another. The successe of the fight will bee of very great consideration to the present conjuncture of England. Pray lett mee know what becomes of you this somer. I thinke in case my father should goe into the north, as he intends to doe, that I may goe along with him, and att my returne resolve for Holand. Every body heare is very fine, and Hide parck every night very full, though that being sold, every coach payes a shilling, that comes in. Your collonel is laid up, and has not seene his lady yett. Ther are four deputies coming from Bourdeaux to this republique in dessein to declare themselfes one also. This is all. I am to dine with Phil. Honniwood. We will drinke God b'w'y. Love ever.
An intercepted letter.
I Have communicated to the parties, who made profers of horses; their replies relished of jealous fears of being discovered. They desire none should be made as yet acquainted with any such concerns but myself. Our distractions here are great, and each one's wishes are for our master; but few so hardy as to embrace the occasion, each one carrying his heart in his heels, ready to run away at the sight of a red-coat. It breaks my heart to be out of action, and to live under a power which is so hateful to me. Dear sir, let me hear from you by the next.
An intercepted letter of lord Grandison.
That of frendshipp and kindness is soe soveraigne a law, that I must earnestly desire your forgivness for transgressing it; which I have exceeded, in that this long I have nott given any acknowledgment of those favours you obliged mee with, when I mett you beyonde sea; and next I aske your pardon for writing now, because my first address is bussness, and trouble, were it nott to you, whose goodness will think it none. Pray, sir, do mee the favour to preserve mee in the king's memory, as a pearson, though of litle ability, of great zeale to his service; and to that end I would willingly, that you would doe me the kindness to present my desires cordially to p. Rupert, that hee may fancye something for mee to doe, in which I may bee honoured with his commands. Though he be now att Paris, I beleeve he still has an eye to the sea; and if hee can fancy a small boate for mee to doe that service in, which is the onely aime and desire of my life; or any thing att land, that I may propound something or myselfe, before I gett my liberty, which may direct me to farther prosecution of a fortune, and a recoverye of this my condition, which is rather worse, because it is idle, then unfortunate. To this, sir, I presume, that you will be pleased to joyne your assistance; and I beleeve, if I know what use to make of it, my libartye might be noe great difficulty. If you find any proposall convenient, doe me the favour to lett me heare from you, and you will oblige him, whose truest desires subscribe him
Your most faithfull servant, Grandison.
An intercepted letter.
Since the accounts were sent, you have given noe account of your selfe; peradventure you are gone to your ordinary sporteing play, which is bopeepe, not knowing what will become of the body, seeing the head is cutt of. In the meane time you are to know, that Mr. Le Febeur will pay noe money upon bills subscribed by servants; therfor you must get Mr. Cromwell to send another bill subscribed by himselfe; and peradventure that will be payed. I say, peradventure, because whilst things go topsiturvy, little credit is to be given to letters. I pray you tell me, what you thinke now of widow Shipton's prophesys, whether the time be come to make bonefyers in London; and whether Mr. White and his friends can be able to performe such a worke, as Mr. Reiner hath done; and whether there be any difficulty in passing from you to us. It seems to me by Mr. Thomas Ander his letter to Mr. Christopher, that new occasions are looked after to prorogue the parlament till Aug. 1654. 'Tis all one to me, whether it be soone, late, or never. I will not be wanting to doe my best endeavour to promote the service of God, and observences of lawes, least the like mischance would befall others, that now hath befalne our kingdome; which is left without all government, law, or custome, those being taken away by the parlament, which is now dissolved, and hath left no heire apparent but Crumwell, who hath noe more authority to governe the realme, then I have. The people may say now truly, that there is none in the world, that have greater liberty than they, because every one may say, unlesse he be a servant to a master and a particular family, Quis noster dominus est? You know what scripture sayes, omne regnum in se divisum desolabitur. Will not the parlament meet under a bush, thinke you, where a puniard shall be of more service than a long sword? For if they, who now are dissolved sitt down, and the dissolver stand up, till he be acknowledged by the people to be their tyrant, there will be a very free state amongst you. By the last poast I writ you a letter for my lady Fairfax, if it be not sent already, I pray returne it backe for good reasons, which you shall know hereafter. Mr. Palmes was called to be made lieutenant att Lamp; and afterward to be graduated, which were pleasing bates. Now Mr. Latour must be constrained to returne or to be subject; which he is to Mr. Palmes, who was desired by Mr. P. not to take possession of his place, till Mr. Latour was departed, which was an hansome fairwell; unless he would take upon him the hardness to stay there to keep another from doing his office. These things please me exceedingly, because I see a great deale of candour and sincerity in the managing of these affairs. Mr. Gas sett out from his lordshippe upon the 18th of April stilo veteri, which was two dayes before the dissolution of our parlament. Are not these strange influances of the planets? You may see good, good cosen, that though I have no eyes, I have a sound and light heart, otherwise I would not write as I doe. How cometh yours with the tidings mentioned above, that is, of the manner how the parlament was dissolved; which to me seemeth very notable. It was a formall dissolution, beginning from the top to take downe the house. Here you may remember the child, which was borne without leggs and armes, and had no other meanes to helpe himselfe then by crying unto Almighty God to assist him; for seeing there is noe king, nor parlament, noe law superiority, noe justice, all England may be compared unto this child. My booke of babes hath an head spuing out a serpent, which head is not crowned, and this serpent must import a religion, which will take in the country, to the great harme of it. 'Tis good lucke, that Mr. A B C his accounts came, when they did, for the next week after Mr. Laburnes letters ware opened, and the accounts taken and stayed, which frights him much, and the rest of his letters, which were of no moment came open. A strange accident hath hapned at Bruxells. About a year agoe, ould James was cited by Mr. Wilfred his owne master to appeare att his towne personally within the space of six moneths, which the king of Spaine would not permitt, and as it was thought the business was ended, but now of late a formall excommunication of the party, with a declaration that he had incurred it, was fixed upon the gates of his palace, before any such thing was suspected; which you know is contrary to the lawes of this country, where all such writts are to be brought forth to the privy councell, and as soone as inquiry was made after this busines, the internunce got away to Leage, soe that now we are disputing whether the prince or prelate must be obeyed. Here is another jointure of . . . . influences, that you that are left without an head, for wee here must goe seeke out our head.
You tell me, that the second edition is cried up mightily by all the witts in the kingdome, which I easily beleive, because it seems by the effects they are much taken with new tunes or fancyes, as alsoe because 'tis cryed up soe high, that it is come to Mr. Wilfrid's ould master his ears, who, if I be not deceaved, will decry in such sort, that it will redound to our disparishment. Now lett me make an end, least I be two troublesome unto my good cozen, whom I will hartily as long as he serveth God, and his virgin-mother, carefully and diligently according to the fashion of our fore-fathers, whose sanctity is approved by God and his church. Vale 1653. S. B. R. B.
A letter concerning some affairs in Germany.
On Saturday last the 17th of this present, the emperor accompanyed by the electors of Mentz and Trevers departed hence towards Auxbourgh about eight in the morning, the rest of the electors present, and the plenipotentiarys of the absent, some going the day before, and others this day, and to-morrow. The Spanish embassadour is also gone thitherwards at six this morning. The election will questionlesse be confirmed, the five or six and twentith of this moneth, and the coronation likewise succeed within fowerteen dayes after their returne hither, which (it is sayd) will be adorned with that of the emperisse to double the splendour and glory of that solemnity, shee not being crowned yet. As for us, wee are likely to have but a small part in this great feast; our busines not being done, yea, and God knowes when it will, or almost whether ever it will or no, we being now frighted with a belief, that presently after the coronation the emperour and the electors will returne every one to his severall residence, leaving only their deputyes heer to goe on with the dyet if (peradventure the dyet go on at all) for now even that seems to admitt a quære; this great affayer of the king of the Romans (which was designed for the first and maine proposition) being concluded beforehand; and the most high and dangerous dissentions amongst the princes of the Imperiall state (at Brandenbourg, Sax, Bavaria, and Sweden) already composed.
If this happen, wee may stay long enough before wee gett our expected succour; for however it be true, that the emperour recommended the busines so warmly, as I formerly wrote, to the electors, and they seemed to embrace it as warmly, yet it is most certaine that they of themselves will doe little or nothing without the consent and conjunction of the rest of the princes and states of the empyre, which are most of them absent from this place, and when these heer shall be likewise scattered, what meanes shall wee finde to treat with them? Or what so great and powerful patron shall wee be able to procure, to carry this worke on with a strong and eaven hand amongst them? And such prolix delayes may prove as bad to us, as denyalls in this conjuncture, when the maine frabrique of our hopes stands upon so sickle grownds, as namely upon our party in Scotland, and the continuation of the warr with Holland; the former whereof wee feare may by this time (perhaps) be crushed, and the later, wee heare, are treating. Notwithstanding our ambassador is not quite dejected, and meanes at least to tyde it out, till the returne from Auxbourgh; and then endeavour to strike the last and maine stroake. In fine, you see wee have been too briske in our machinations hitherto; concluding that done, which was hardly well begunne. But a short space more will give us either an almes or an answere. Interim, sir John Henderson is gone to Nurimbergh, pretending busines there, though indeed wee be not sure of his returne, he having looked obliquely upon our affayers heer of late. But wee hope to see him here againe, for wee would not willingly loose so able and usefull an instrument; though yet in prudence wee cannot expect any extraordinary zeale from him; some of our courtiers at Paris having lately putt no obscure disvalue upon him; which if hee should resent to the quick (as hee hath witt and worth enough to doe) it is to be doubted, that we have utterly lost him.
This is my fowerteenth to you, since I receaved your last, and all sent by the way of Collein, which by frequent consideration and consultation too, I have judged both the safer and
the speedier. Therefore, as the knowledge of my owne caution and diligence on the one
side permitts mee not to doubt of their safe arrivall to your hands hitherto; so the sensible
proofs I have already had of your freindship and goodnes towards mee on the other, cause
me to acquiesce totally in your punctuallity, for the quickening my marchand towards a
new supply for your nephew Cæsar, who is absolutely exhausted, and who eagerly expects
your orders for the disposition of himself. Believe me, sir, it is impossible for you at so
great a distance to imagine, what strange difficulties of twenty kindes are daily to be encountred and vanquished heer by some in the world, who yet are resolved to perish rather
than prævaricate or varie. I am more than I can say,
Yours, Gylles Collins.
Your nephew Franc. sayes, that henceforwards he will write by the Thursdayes post, as finding by computation, that it is more speedy then that of Mundayes, as coming to Antwerp on Frydayes, so that it stayes but one day there, before it goe on to the sea side, whereas that of the Mundayes not reaching Antwerp the same weeke stayes a whole weeke there.
The relation of the lord Aertsbergen and other deputies has been read, and in conformity to their high mightinesses resolution of yesterday, the lord Rhingrave, governor of Maestricht, was admitted to make his proposals in the behalf of the regency of Liege, upon the forming of a defensive with this state, and to entertain men of war for the defence of the country subjects, and vassals, of both parties. Upon deliberation whereof it was ordered to be taken for notification.
(fn. 2) There was in the assembly read a letter from the lords burgomasters and council of the town of Bremen, dated 7th instant, complaining that some commissioners from the Swedes were erecting a fort upon the borders of the river of that town, which fort being finished will command the whole river ad bene placitum. And upon deliberation it was ordered, that the said letter should be put into the hands of the states lords deputies for the affairs of Sweden to view and examine the same, and make report thereof.
A letter was received from the college of the admiralty in the quarter of the north, written in Enchuysen the 19th of this month, containing in substance, that John Cornelius Boon, armourer against the English, had brought two prizes from them, the one being an English pinnace, and the other a Scottish vessel, and the said Cornelius desired to know how he should dispose of the men taken in the said prizes.
After deliberation it was resolved, That the said letter should be put into the hands of the lord Huygens, and other deputies of the States General for the maritime affairs, and after examination to make report thereof.
Extracts out of the resolutions of the States General.
Upon that which was represented in the assembly on the behalf of the merchants, with whom this state hath agreed to furnish their new ships of war with iron guns, it was ordered, That it should be written to the lord Beuningen, that in case the said guns, or part of them, were in Sweden embargoed to make use of them for the service of that kingdom, to labour by all efficacious offices and means, to the end the said guns should be restored to the said merchants for the benefit of this state. And to effect this, it was ordered, That a letter should be written to the queen of Sweden, to be delivered to her majesty in that behalf, if occasion should so require.
The proposals for having the respective alliances with the crown of France and the elector of Brandenburgh being newly represented to the assembly; after deliberation it was ordered, That the defective provinces should be required with all speed to declare themselves for the same.
Peter Bonel sent by the present council of state of England has been in the assembly, and delivered to their highnesses a letter of the said council bearing date the 6th day of this month O. S. importing an answer to that of their highnesses of the 30th of April last, written to the parliament of the commonwealth of England; and after consideration being had thereupon, it was ordered, That a copy thereof should be granted to the several provinces as they desired, recommending to them to manage the same with due secrecy.
Stockholm, 14 May 1653. O. S. (fn. 3)
The Polonian vice chancellor Radziejouski is departed hence from France, her majesty having ordered 10,000 rix dollars to be given him upon his voyage; but the business about which he came, hath taken no effect, he having obtained nothing of those things he desired.
We long to hear some relation of the now settled government in England, having received news from London to Gottenburgh, of a great alteration, and whole dissolution of the former parliament by the lord general Cromwell; but the certainty and particulars thereof, being not yet known, are expected by the next; as also to hear of the long desired English lord embassador's motion hither, it being uncertain yet whether his lordship comes over for Gottenburgh or Hamburgh. In the mean while the appointed ship for receiving his lordship at Wisman stayeth until intelligence be had of his departure from London, and where he will be pleased to land.
Some days ago, about nine of the clock at night, there appeared here in the firmament a strange planet, in form of a bow, with a fiery arrow upon it, and a great fiery rod on one side. The signification whereof God knows.
A letter of intelligence.
Yours by the last I received, with your relation of the numbers of your fleet at sea, and your farther preparations in that river, Portsmouth, and Badiley's safe arrival. Your power at sea is confessed by all this court to be more terrible than ever they apprehended; and in discourse they say, that the Hollanders, who made account to be universal masters of the sea, now must yield to England, and that the more wonder, because of your late change, which in most men's opinions would produce more than appears of troubles in that commonwealth; but now they begin to alter their opinions, and to admire England. And certainly if your fleet gives a blow to the Dutch fleet at this season, they shall be constrained to call for peace, though you did not; but their hopes are, that by Van Tromp's conjunction with the king of Denmark's fleet they shall be able to encounter yours, especially upon their own coasts, as near the Sound.
From this place you cannot expect much since my former to you. The prince of Condé and count Fuenseldagna are both returned from Antwerp, and by all their greatness and endeavours they receive not from the merchants but 500,000 crowns, part whereof is given to the prince, and the other the count disposeth of for to bring his army into the field. It is intended, that both armies (the numbers of which you had by my former) shall be in the field the tenth of this next month. You have had from me long since, how that the remaining provinces of Belgium with the king of Spain have severally levied a regiment of foot each of them; they are to maintain at their own expence all the company. Besides of late they have freely granted a million of florins towards the sustenance of the rest of the army this season.
Some letters from Paris bring hither some consultations there had towards a peace with Spain, by the means of the pope's nuncio and the Venitian ambassador, upon the return of some messenger sent by them to Madrid: but of that there is no progress yet as to be intimated to the court here.
Here is a report, that orders are come from Spain, that count de Swartsenburgh, camener major to the archduke, shall go back for Germany; and that his highnes's confessor, a German jesuit, be not admitted to come to the palace.
The archduke and prince of Conde three nights ago supped together at one table, and one side at the middle of the table; but Conde had the right hand, being the guest. Conde is now preparing to be gone into the field.
Coll. Duir is gone from hence to transport hither for the earl of Castlehaven 3000 men from Ireland, which Mr. Owens, a merchant of London, undertakes for by a private contract: You have herewith the letters of your friends at Vienna and Ratisbon, which is all now from,
(fn. 4) It is a great unhappiness to me, that in this juncture of time I cannot receive a line from you, with your thoughts upon the papers I sent you, which are of no small concernment, but there are ten times greater, which I have to impart, which must not be committed to paper. 'Tis pity to lose so glorious an opportunity to serve the church of God, and free millions from slavery. 'Tis your interest as men, as well as your work as Christians; the turn of all Europe lyes in the hands of your servant, in as much as the support of the monarchs therein are your poor friends servants. These generalls may be a wonder; yet so it is, the persons that are sent to you from hence slight not; and though you cannot at present help their desires, yet do not discourage them, but give them hopes till I come; believing you will see cause, that I come. All things are here well, and the sight of the faces of the English the only thing desired. The generall meeting here is upon Wednesday to ingage all to you. An account of the issue you may expect by the next. I have three posts since written to your honour about money, for 'tis no little charge I am at to maintain myself and those three with mee. And withall I humbly desire to know your thoughts, whether it be judged usefull or not, the business I have brought to this period; if otherwise, I shall with very much content sit down when I have given you an account of what I have done, and how affairs stand. The Lord keep you in peace amongst yourselves, that you may still be a terror to your enemies abroad, and to your friends comfort and support.
Extracts out of the resolutions of the States General.
A Letter was read from the agent de Glarges, written in Calais the 12th of this month, importing that a pass should be procured from the king of Spain for two couriers to pass hinc & inde, from thence to Zeland and vice versa, as it has been practised formerly; as also that order should be given to have in Calais a galliot with oars to search after news at sea. And after deliberation it was ordered, that the said letter should be put into the hands of the lord Huygens and other deputies of their highnesses for the maritime affairs, and after examination, to make report thereof.
A letter was read from the college of the admiralty of Amsterdam, bearing date the 23d of this month, concerning the pressing of two ships of war and a small frigat, to be sent towards the coast of Brazil; and after deliberation, it was ordered, that it should be written to their lordships, to form with all speed the said press, with assurance to them, that the necessary monies shall be provided in due time.
A paper of the Portuguese ambassador.
Paucis diebus ante mutationem hujus reipub. dederam ultimum responsum pacis articulis, in horam expectans decretum recipiendi ipsos: etenim ratione multarum collationum & minutissimorum examinum, non solum mutati sunt articuli antiqui fæderis, sed etiam aucti, & meliores redditi, valde contra id quod rex dominus meus expectabat, ac in suis mihi datis præscriptis supponebat. Itaque tum propter hanc causam, tum quia integer prope agitur annus ex quo ab ejus obsequio absum, in quo operam illi continuam præsto, & insuper quod intellexit ex conditione negotii nullas subesse rationes, cur tandiu produceretur, imperat mihi præcisè & instanter, ut quàm brevissimè proficiscar. Quoniam verò id ego facere nollem, nisi perducto ad finem eo, cujus causa veni, negotio, spero fore ut assentiente ex. concilio iis, quæ præposueram, nec fallente me obedientiæ quam debeo sidem, ultimum ei & felicem citra moram terminum imponamus. Londini, 17 Maii 1653.
A letter written by the Dutch consul from Aleppo of the 28th of May 1653. [N. S.]
At this instant I received a letter from Balsora, dated the 15th of April, giving advice as followeth: that in Gomron in Persia there were two English ships returning from the East Indies, which met with two other Dutch ships, Hollanders, who after a bloody sight of two days continuance were taken and brought to Gomron, where the company has a custom-house. They do besides advise, that the bar of the river of Goa was blocked up by sixteen ships of war of the company, whereby they had hindered the Portugal to get out with his army to join with the English. The English are likewise so besieged by ours, and so straitly before the Muscat, that it is not possible a boat can pass. Besides our ships have taken two English more, which were going to the East Indies with two other Portugueses, all richly laden; and in the island of Ceylon our ships have intirely destroyed the Portugueses; which are good news for the company and our states, &c.
An intercepted letter out of Germany.
Since the arrivall of the emperour and the electours of Auxbourgh, advertizement is come, that the election was to be made this day, or to morrow without sayle, and presently after the returne hither, and consequently the coronation heer; which being celebrated it is generally conceaved that the electours will dissipate every one to his severall principate, as likewise the emperour and king, leaving the rest to be agitated by deputyes as I wrote in my last; they all being uncertaine of the queen of Sweden's designes, shee maintaining her leavyes still, without any manifesto, and having patched up a kinde of superficiall accord with Brandenbourgh, to the end (as some, who pretend to understand her maximes, presume to say) to surprize him the more unprovided in Pomerania, in the confines whereof her troopes have been hovering a good while.
In the meane time God knowes what will become of our busines heer, wee having obtained nothing yet, but sayre words at randome, so that when wee talke to ourselves (which wee are very apt to doe) wee admitt not of lesse than twenty or fifteen thowsand men at the least, and a lusty traine of artillery too. But the boggling state of assayres heer startles us much, as giving inevitable delayes to any such expedition, as wee pretend, besides the uncertainty of the continuance of the war with Holland, and which, if it cease, our designe is dash't. Againe, wee have no great confidence in one of the prime abbettours of our machinations, namely the electour of Mentz (how speciously zealous soever he seeme) in regard of the difference of principles, notwithstanding wee cast many a false dice, to winne the game, and assure that our king will be a catholique, when hee shall be in power, &c. Soone after the returne from Auxbourgh, our embassador will depart from hence, and goe to visit some of the princes, as well who have as who have not been present heer, as first, to the d. of Sax, then Bavaria, then Brunswick, then Newbourgh (who is very sick after the late death of his father) then Hassia, Brandenbourgh, &c. casting a hooke in every poole, and hoping to catch a little fish at least in all.
Wee have lately smoothed up sir John Henderson againe by large promises and courtships, and he made a very handsome present to our ambassador, a day or two before his departure for Hambourgh, to the value of 300 rix dollars, so that wee expect him shortly back againe, hee being gone this journey for the recovery of some moneys due to him there. And wee have the lord Gunne (who is married to a lady in these parts, and hath a little castle, and some small proportion of land to it) so servently affectionate to our interests, as that hee sayes, that if our busines have a good result heer, hee will sell all and a long with us. In fine, wee shall now suddainly see the measure of our hopes heer, and accordingly you shall be served with notice thereof.
Henceforward you may be pleased to direct your letters to mee thus: For Mr. Diego de
Villa, gentleman to his excellence the marq. of Castelrodrigo, his cath. majesty's extraordinary
embassador &c. at Ratisbone. This done, putt it in a cover directed thus: A monsieur monsieur Jehan Jaques Yxel, maistre de la grande poste pour sa majesté imperiale, à Ratisbone.
Heerwith I must humbly kisse your hands. Sir,
Your invariable servant till death, Samuel Stone.
A letter to sir Kenelme Digby.
I Fear we may see such variety of changes, as will scarcely afford us a more seasonable time as to your business. His excellency was forced to this action, and will be necessitated to restore this government to Charles Stuart, or a new parliament; the first least, though the last most probable, yet, in the opinion of some, not altogether unlikely.
Extract out of the resolutions of the States General.
The lord deputy of the province of Groningen hath declared to the assembly, by express order from his principal lords, that he was conforming himself with the province of Geldre in all that concerns the alliance to be made with the crown of France and with the elector of Brandenburgh.
The princes electors have been assembled this day from nine of the clock till twelve at noon, and concluded, that upon Wednesday next the election of a Roman king should go forward; to which end a bridge is prepared from the lords Fugger's house unto the dome, clothed with 6000 ells of scarlet.
A paper from the Portuguese ambassador.
Agens regius mihi renuntiavit causas, ob quas concilium optabat, ut naves Hamburgenses hic exonerarentur, attenta necessitate, quam inpræsentiarum habet classis earum, quibus onusta erat, rerum. Et quoniam cognita mihi est, ac perspecta voluntas, qua rex dominus meus juberet ex suis armamentariis quicquid ad suos usus concilio opus esset donare; non possum non annuere, ut pro libitu, in usus suos vindicet, quicquid in supradictis navigiis portatur. Idque velim & rogem meo nomine concilio dominatio vestra exponat.
Extract out of the notes of the lords states of Zealand.
The business concerning the English negotiation being put to the vote, after deliberation it was thought fit and understood, that the treaty upon the foregoing order and instruction of the 5th of June last past, wherewith the lords commissioners went for England, shall be resumed; and that to that end, the lords Nieuport and Jongstall, shall be sent thither with all speed, upon condition, that a certain short and peremptory time shall be agreed on by all the confederates jointly, which shall be made known to the government of England.
We cannot hear any other reason for the preparation of our fleet, but that it is done for the defence of our land in omnem rerum eventum. Twenty two ships are now ready, and for the setting out of so many more, as also of ten fresh ships, order is given by his majesty.
Sunday last, the Ryx Steward had invited the Spanish ambassador, Conde Ribaledo, to go and see the chief ships of the said fleet, and having attended him with his coach, brought him to the water-side, where one of the king's schouts lay ready, wherewith they went first aboard the ship called the Prince, in which ship a banquet was prepared; from whence they went aboard of the Triunitas, an extraordinary great and strong ship; from thence aboard of Frederick; and lastly upon Sophia, the admiral, where a stately supper being prepared, they continued the night. Two or three days ago, the same respect was shewed unto the Holland's resident, who daily expects the ratification of the treaty between the crown and the commonwealth, having advice that the express, who is sent by the States General to bring it hither, is departed thence. The monies, according to the said treaty promised unto his majesty, are with the first occasion expected out of Holland.
Letter of intelligence.
Augusta (fn. 5), 1 June 1653. [N. S.]
Since my last to you from this place, our great news are, that the emperor's son, the king of Bohemia and Hungary, is elected yesterday king of the Romans, unanimi voce omnium electorum, without the least opposition. To morrow, being the second of this instant, is appointed for his coronation, which will be certainly done with great solemnity and applause, and then he shall be entitled the young king Ferdinand IV, and he is the twelfth successively of the house of Austria that shall be Cæsar, which is much.
(fn. 6) The French faction is much displeased inwardly at this new creation, but cannot help it. Many endeavours were to hinder this election, the father being alive, and so concluded at the peace of Munster, but in vain. For to all objections that were made, the electors answered, that the election appertained to them only, and not to the empire, France, Sweden, or any else; so in the end all is carried as you see.
For the election fifty five points are subscribed to by the emperor and the electors and some other princes concerning the empire, which are not yet known to any but to themselves, upon oath of secrecy.
(fn. 7) The difference betwixt Sweden and Brandenburgh for certain is decided, and Sweden will not attempt to meddle with the empire united, nor any else.
(fn. 8) The legate of R. Carolus is in Ratisbon, and I think he will not stay long there for want of monies. Besides, he has done as much business here, as he can yet a while. Some secret councils are with the emperors and the princes concerning R. C. and be sure, if peace be in Germany, as it is like to be, he shall be welcome, and some collections already to be made for him. Count Lesly, from whom Wilmot expected some monies, played the Scot, but gave no monies; at which Wilmot is disappointed, and complains much of Lesley, who might give monies if he pleased, for he is rich, being one of the emperor's velt mareschals general upon the confines of Hungary; which is all the news you now have from,
An intercepted letter.
Yours by the last I receaved; his one I delivered to Mr. Dery, and his one to 160 I sent away. All that yow wrott me in the behalfe of 169, I communicated to himself: the resons of your advise he wonders yow have not sent, butt now yow must thinke on some other way, for his buissiness heer be lost and goen. He receaved the last day his finall answere from secretarie Navarre, who had orders from the archduke and Fuensaldania, to give the said answer to 169 by woord of mouth, and not in writtinge. The answere breffly is thus: Sir, said he, the archduke and Fuensaldania are right sorry, they cannot accommodate you; for the first, you pretended concerning the leavies, that is conferred uppon persons, that will doe it more advantagious for his majestie then you could doe, and soe that is goen, and leavies from Erlond weeill have no more, for we have noe monies; as for the chardge of beinge serjeant major de battalia, the Spaniards and the Irish are both one and one allwayes aggregated together, and allready there is two Spaniards of that name, soe that at present wee need no more; and thats the end of all the business. Now 169 is soe sad and melancholicus, ut nesciat quo se vertat, aut quomodo sese hic sustentet. He desires yow, and what friends he has there, to consider what is best for him to doe; he swers me he rather 10 be where he was, then to be here as he is. Coll. Leon and Mr. Dery parted this cittie yesterday; the latter will delay some days at Bruges, but the former goes directly towards yow. 169 referred to the relation of both all the passages heere from first to last, they being an eey-witness of all. 169 wrott by them to 92 of the disrespects he receiveed, &c. Coll. Duir returned hither back last day, and soe did Owens yesterday. I know not yett the reson. Castlehaven is coll. of the 3000 Irish, coll. Napper sent hither before him. Cusack had licence from Loren to have a priest to hear his confession: one Plunket is gone to him, but not yet returned. 169 at this present time has noe more moneys in the world but 26 pounds ster. I doe not remember all the moneys I have dispersed for letters since the time of my arrivall heere sometimes, but the ordinary shall be 13 or 14 .... per weeke.
An intercepted letter.
Our council of state is in very hard labour; and what they will produce, is in vain for me to conjecture. Would it lay in my power to help them .... I know what I had to doe. It would be easy enough to stifle the child in the birth. Much time hath been spent about questioning of sir John Lenthall (fn. 9). One of our new council hath a mind to his place. We talk merrily of a petition coming out of Surrey for making their general king. The foolish, senseless, stupid citizens were so sottish, as to petition their lord general to have at least some, who were thought good men of the parliament to sit again; but he gave them an answer no ways to their desire. He intends to be king in effect, though loth to take upon the title. The apparition of the city's petition was seen a fortnight ago in several places of this town; but it soon vanished in the thoughts of wise men. The council often are at a nonplus, for they know not what to do; they have added three more to their number. The general's picture was set up at the exchange with verses under it, tending much to his honour: it was brought to him by the lord mayor, who, it is thought, was the contriver of the setting of it up. (fn. 10) Whitlock declareth, that the parliament is not dissolved; and there is gathering of hands to that purpose. On the other side there is gathering of hands for a king. This is both in town and country. Essex and Buckinghamshire are sending to petition for a king. Thus things stand in a great confusion: as things stand now, we know not what to think or say. The time was, when that the challenging of five members was cried out upon for an unheard of breach of privilege of parliament; but afterwards the impeaching of eleven members was a greater, and made a mighty noise amongst the presbyterians. What think you now of turning them out of doors? Alderman Allin did not stick to say, that it was the greatest breach of privilege, that could be imagined. But of this you may hear enough by others; all that I can tell you at present is to let you understand, that I am really
Monsieur de Barriere, the prince of Condé's agent, to the general and council of state.
Les desputés des Bourdeaux (fn. 11) ont representé à vos honneurs le pitoyable estat, auquel leur ville est reduite; mais ils ne l'ont pas encore representé si desplorable, qu'il est; car la seule esperance, qui leur restoit par le secours, qu'ils attendoyent de l'armée navalle d'Espagne, leur est ostée, la dite armée n'estant pas en estat par sa foiblesse de tenter le secours, & Bourdeaux ne peut attendre, qu'elle soit en estat par le defaut de vires, qui est la seule chose, dont il est pressé, ne manquant au reste ni de forces ni de resolution pour soussrir jusques à la derniere extremité. Mais vous scavez, messieurs, qu'il n'y a point d'armes contre la faim, & que quelque constance & fermeté, qu'ay ce peuple, si on ne luy fait avoir du pain, il faut qu'à la sin il subisse le joug de fes ennemis, qui sera certainement tres rude. Or, messieurs, toute leur esperance est maintenant fondée fur l'assistance, qu'ils attendent de vos honneurs, la quelle ils vous demandent avec toute humilité par la bouche de leurs desputés, & moy, je joins les tres humbles prieres de monseigneur le prince, suivant l'ordre que j'en ay de luy, vous suppliant tres humblement de considerer, qu'il y à quinze mois, que je suis icy de sa part pour vous demander ceste grace, & que je n'ay rien peu obtenir: que fi le commerce, qui m'avoit esté accordé l'annéé passé par le parlement, eust eu son effet, Bourdeaux ne seroit pas presentement en l'estat, où il est; & j'oseray dire, que ceux, qui ont empeché l'execution, n'estoyent affectionnés à ceste republique, puis que c'est une chose qui ne l'engagoist à rien, & dont il luy pourroit revenir une grande utilité: mais ce font choses passées, de quoy il ne faut plus parler.
J'ay à suplier seulement vos honneurs, de considerer, si leur interest est, que Bourdeaux perisse; & que par consequent le parti de monseigneur le prince soit ruiné, comme il le feroit, si Bourdeaux se pert. Je ne me mesle pas de juger des affaires de telle consequence; mais je vois bien, que vos ennemis travaillent tous les jours, comme ils ont tousjours fait, à ruiner ledit parti, comme nous en avons des marques toutes recentes; & nous sommes si malheureux, que nous avons toujours receu du mal par eux, & n'avons pas encores ressenti nulles de vos graces; mais j'espere, que vous regarderes Bourdeaux en pitie, & travailleres à fa deliverance, ce que vous est tres facile, s'il vous plaist de l'entreprendre.
Et comme autres fois le conseil d'estat, qui estoit lors, m'a demandé plusieurs fois ce que monseigneur le prince seroit pour eux, si ils saisoyent quelque chose pour luy, je diray à vos honneurs, comme en ayant plein pouvoir, que toutes les choses, que vous desireres pour vos seuretes, qui seront au pouvoir de mon dit seigneur, je vous les accorderay; & les deputes de Bourdeaux ont aussy pouvoir d'accorder toutes les seuretes, que vous desires. Mais comme Bourdeaux est extraordinairement pressé, je supplie tres humblement vos honneurs de vouloir nous faire favoir, quelles font leur volontés; car nous fommes à la crise de nostre mal; mais attendant, qu'il vous plaise nous donner une resolution, je vous suplie tres humblement, qu'il vous plaise nous donner une permission de faire transporter de bleds de ce pays icy à Bourdeaux, asin de pouvoir subvenir à ce pauvre peuple, qui criera bien tost à la faim, si promtement il n'en est secouru; que fi il ne vous plaist pas d'ordonner une permission publique, qu'il vous plaise la donner tacitement. J'espere cela de vos bontés & charités, que je vous en suplie tres humblement.