A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 1, 1638-1653. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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July (4 of 5)
An intercepted letter from Paris to the marquis de Barriere.
J'ay receu la vostre du 24 du present, & vous en remercie tres humblement. Je n'ay jamais creu ce que mon frere m'avoit mandé de Bruxelles, & moins asseuré, puis que vous m'en asseurez le contraire; car il adjoute autant de foy à ce que vous m'asseure, qu'à l'Evangile. Je voudrois que tous ceux, qui sont aupres de 97 sussent de la mesme resolution; & qu'ils eussent autant de zele & de sidelité pour ses interests que 54. 33. 65. Je m'asseure, que ce que 68 avoit dit à un de mes amis, n'est pas la verité; c'est à dire, qu'il estoit assuré d'avoir quand il voudroit 62. 56. 62. 37 ceux qui sont a u p r e s de 97 hormis d e u x. Je m'asseure que 71 est un de ceux la.
Hier vers le soir il arriva un courier extraordinaire de Bourdeaux. J'ay oüy dire mons. le chancelier, qu'il disoit à un de ses amis sortant du cabinet de la reyne, qu'ils avoient de tres bonnes nouvelles de Bourdeaux; que les bourgeois offrent du rendre au roy mons. Marsin & mons. Baltazar, pourveu que sa majesté leur donné l'amnistie, comme ils le desirent, & à mons. le prince de Conti aussi, lequel ils guardent dans l'hostel de ville pour la sureté, à ce qu'ils disent. Tout le monde y ne criet que vive le roy.
Le pourtraict de mons. le prince, qui estoit attasche à la porte de l'hostel de ville, sust mis en cendres. Ce courier dit, que les Espagnols se sont retirez, voyants que Bourdeaux n'ait pas voulu recevoir leur secours. Ils estoient fort resolus de les secourir, si ceux de Bourdeaux l'eussent voulu. Mons. le comte de Fiesque fit tout ce qu'un homme pouvoit faire pour les y persuader, & leur monstra les asseurances, qu'il avoit du roy d'Espagne, qu'il periroit plustost que souffrir qu'ils perissent, & asseure que la flotte estoit arrivée des Indes. Ils ne manqueroient point d'argent, & leur fit voire aussi combien estoit considerable ce secours, qu'il donne presentment; & harangua fort long temps parmis le peuple de ce sacon la. Quelques conseillers luy respondirent, que ce n'estoit pas le sentiment d'un vray Francois, & qu'ils ne vouloient d'autre roy que le leur; & qu'on luy doit rendre ce qui est à luy. Si tout cecy est vray, voila le ville perdue, & les Bourdelois se perdront aussi. Je vous represente les choses naivement, comme on les a representé à la cour. Je suis sasché de vous escrire de si mauvaises nouvelles; mais je vois, qu'il vous est necessaire de scavoir tout, & de prendre la dessus vos mesures. Jamais rien ne m'a tant l'assligé, que ces nouvelles. En Catalogne on y fait grand progres. Le roy sera ici demain, ayant laissé son armée bien fort & en bon ordre. Des gens de qualité me veuillent faire croire que t r a i t t e, & que c'est cela, qui retarda le retour du 66; que 97 est enragé contre les E s p a g n o l l e s qu'il n'a plus de pouvoir, qu'un officier en 53. 24. 62. 36. 43. 59. 31. 24. En sin mille choses comme cela. Vous scavez ce qu'il y en a. Les gens, que je vous ay mandé en ma derniere, sont partis d'icy. Vous ne mandez rien de nostre levée, dont je suis en peine. Je vous prie de m'avoir tousjours en vos bonnes graces. Messiez vous de tout le monde, qui est la, de l' 50. 47. 59. 31. 52. 61.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
There being a fair at Middleburgh, some of the townsmen addressed themselves to the burgo-master Verbeecke, desiring they would permit the prince's colours to be hung out upon the steeple. Thereupon he declared, he had nothing against it, but that he durst not take it upon himself alone to give any such order, but would cause the rest of the burgo-masters and aldermen to meet, as he did, who all agreed, that the prince of Orange's colours should be set up upon the tower; which the said townsmen presently did, and that night a company of foot of the town marched with the prince's colours, and coming upon the market place, gave three vollies, crying Vive le prince d'Orange, God bless the prince of Orange. The last of this month the magistrates are to be removed, at which time a great alteration is expected. The heer Tybaut is treated and much made of by the townsmen, and desired by them, that he would take upon him again the government of the town, which he hitherto hath cunningly seemed to refuse.
The rabble at Zierickzee doubting whether their burgo-masters were affected to the prince, did oblige the daughters of the magistrates to wear their knots and fancies upon their clothes of the prince's colour, instead of other colours.
At Dort the commonalty did likewise declare themselves more and more for the prince of Orange, and are very much incensed against the pensionary De Witt. The raedt pensionary De Witt, the next day after he was advanced to that charge, going for Dort to fetch his dismission thence of being any longer a magistrate, is sent unto by the states of Holland, to come and officiate in his charge; the pensionary Kinschott of Delst having occupied the place pro tempore.
The 23d of this month the states of Holland received a letter from the captains and officers of the train'd-bands of town of Enchuysen, wherein they desire, that the said states, for peace and quietness sake, would not send any soldiers to quarter in their towns. The states of Holland have writ to all their public ministers, as well those that are abroad, as those that are at home, with whom they correspond, that there is no good to be expected of the English treaty; being of advise, in case no engagement be made, our commissioners returning home, to leave one of their two at London. The raedt pensionary de Witt and those that are of his cabal and junto think, because he is advanced to the charge of raedt pensionary, that they are now uppermost; and they have and will have their revenge, that the prince of Orange shall not be chosen captain general in hast.
The 26th of this month the states of Holland did admonish the respective provinces, that they would put out of the register of their high and mighty lordships the resolution taken upon the 5th of June 1650, concerning the misunderstandings happened therein, according to the promise of the provinces made in the great hall; and in case this was not done, that they would not stand to the amnesty that was made at that time.
Yesterday their high and mighty lordships received a letter from admiral Tromp, wherein he adviseth, that he would be glad to have the six or seven East India ships, that are making ready, out to sea with him; whereupon they writ him word to day, he should not stay for them; but if the wind do any ways favour him, that he should go with his fleet to the Texell, to joyn with those ships that lie there, which he may do with a good wind; and if the English lie in his way, he may engage and fight them; and the ships of the vice admiral De Witt, that lye in the Texell, to come at and fight at the same time. Likewise the English fleet, strong sixty sail, besides a few small ships, doth range the coast, and is to be seen at Petten and Egmont. Yesterday the great ship of Genoa got over the sand called Pampus, made ready for the vice admiral De Witt.
The states of Holland perceiving, that the lord Jacob Vett, then presiding in the assembly of their high and mighty lordships, was the day before yesterday resolved (in all likelihood having advertised them before hand) that he would make some declaration of the good intentions and resolutions taken and made by his superiors the 21st of September last, concerning the appointing and chusing of a captain general, met as many as they could get together of their party; and when the said De Vett began to declare the commands of the lords his superiors, to speak concerning the said resolution, the said states desired, that he would supersede that question for two or three days, 'till their assemblies were full, and that all were present (that is to say, 'till that the wisdom of Holland be come back from Dort) but he declared, that he could not do that, because that was not only against his order, but besides he was commanded to advise the lords his superiors night and day, what should pass at the generality about that business. Whereupon the said states, and especially Stellingwers, broke out with such passionate words, after this manner: faith he, is this a time to debate such businesses as these? If you proceed therein any further, it will be a cause and means to confound, and overturn, and destroy the whole country; and this is the foundation, that Zealand doth lay, who will be the first that will feel it. The said De Vett having made opening thereof, and having demonstrated the necessity of a captain general, the commissioners of Frieslend and Groningen thanked the said lord Vett, declaring withal, that they were glad, that my lords the states of Zealand did foresee more than others the ruin of their dear native country; and that it would be a means to get out of the sad condition and disorder they were now in, and likewise they added the good intentions and resolutions of their lords superiors to join with those of Zealand; and when it was their turn to preside, they would then make the same declaration. In the mean time they accepted of the resolution of the states of Zealand, as that is set down; and furthermore desired, that the said lord Vett presiding would be pleased to put it to the question, which he did. The lord Henchelom being alone present in the assembly on the behalf of Guelderland, and looking to the eyes and gestures of the Hollanders, declared he had no orders from his superiors, desired a copy, and that men ought to accommodate those of Holland in putting off and retarding the business for two or three days, without making any conclusion. Vander Holck of Utrecht being likewise alone, the lord of Renswoode being gone out to go and dine with the princess dowager, who had invited him and the lord Brederode to dinner, declared to have no power, desiring a copy of the said resolution.
The drossard Ysselmuyden on the behalf of the province of Overyssel desired likewise a copy of the said resolution, and that they might very well accommodate those of Holland, in giving them respite for two or three days. Whereupon the said lord Vett concluding, dictated himself the conclusion to the gressier, the respective provinces agreeing copies of the said resolution by plurality of voices, and consenting to the states of Holland two of three days respite, to bring in against that time what they shall have to object against it, who did very earnestly insist, that they would keep secret that which is above said, and not enter it into the note book of their high and mighty lordships; but this would not be granted them, this resolution not being set down in the ordinary, but in the secret note book of their high and mighty lordships. Yesterday the said resolution being resumed, some of the said lords states of Holland came again into the assembly of their high and mighty lordships, pensionary Revil being speaker, who declared, that it was now the unfittest time in the world to proceed to debate such businesses, and that they were now busy to treat with the English, who, if they did come to hear and understand of it (meaning the English) would break off all manner of treaty, and would not suffer, that the son of a daughter of the Stuarts should be captain general over these countries; desiring therefore, that the said resolution might be kept secret, and that their high and mighty lordships would proceed with the greatest circumspection in the said business; and that there was no need of a captain general over the militia, by reason the lord Brederode had already full power to command the militia, as head and chief. This morning the raedt pensionary De Witt being come from Dort, where he is discharg'd of being their pensionary, was presently sworn raedt pensionary, and afterwards coming into the assembly of their high and mighty lordships, did declare and lay open to the lord De Vett, who presided, how dangerous a thing it was to proceed to the choice of a captain general at this time; and he desired the said lord Vett, that this resolution might be put out of the secret register of their high and mighty lordships. The said lord Vett told him, you do well, my lord, to advise me to that you dare not do yourself; that is now too late; we have sent word thereof already to our lords superiors, and there was an end of this business for that time. The lord Van Opdam, the raedt pensionary De Witt, and some others out of some of the towns are busy to form and draw up the objections, and advise against a captain and lieutenant general to represent the generality.
Yesterday the lord ambassador Le Brun presented a memorandum to their high and mighty lordships, wherein he desires, that some commissioners may be appointed to conser with him; and in the mean time to find out means to preserve and protect the lands of Overmaze, whilst the chamber mi-partie may be erected, to debate and decide the misunderstandings risen about the said lands, which was granted to the said ambassador. The duke of Newborgh hath desired the duke of Lorrain, that he would not lend all the forces to the king of Spain, but keep twelve regiments of them disengaged, to be employed by him, if occasion should serve.
The ambassador Boreel hath writ to their high and mighty lordships, dated the 25th of the last month, that the king did no wise make any scruple or difficulty at the project of the treaty, as it was delivered by him to the king's council, only his majesty would willingly have had in the twelfth article, that the inhabitants of this state should not trade to such towns and places, which were at any time in rebellion against his majesty; whereby his majesty faith, that they would be strengthened, and he weakened. That furthermore both parties contracting having drawn their swords against the English, or what enemies soever, neither party is to give out, or to make any treaty than by joint consent, and pari passu; and that they should name, with what strength and relief or assistance both parties shall be obliged to assist one another, upon which three points (wherewith we are now busy) the state having declared itself, a perfect and full agreement will be made with France.
The lord Beuningen writ in his last letters to their high and mighty lordships, that men are inclined in Sweden to set forth to sea a fleet; by which means they think to obtain of the states of the United Provinces, and likewise of England, free passage of their ships, without any molestation, loaden either with contraband goods or other merchandizes, that so they may enjoy the benefit of the freedom of navigation, and commerce of the kingdoms; that the queen of Sweden and the rest of the lords of the council were not yet come to Stockholm to set forward this resolution, but every day expected.
Letter of intelligence.
Yours I received by the last, by which I see you are always masters of the sea, as also at home of peace, notwithstanding all your charges, which is extremely wondered at, and his excellency lord Cromwell cryed up for the most gallant man in the world by the princes here at their feasting and drinking. His very enemies acknowledge it; yet you never heard so many relations as be of your armies and of Holland's, that you demand such conditions as being high, only to brag; and that you are not in the power to do it; and that now the Hollanders will have a more powerful army against you than ever before, which yours shall not be able to stand; and that the divisions of Holland at home do them more disadvantage, than all your strength or force; and that others betray them, and such like. We have also, that the Irish in the province of Munster in Ireland, and the Scots in the Highlands, are in war against yours, and do great matters; but you say nothing of it; so it has the less credit here.
Here is still one Mr. Harris, who gives out he belongs to Cromwell and your state; he lodgeth constantly in the Spanish ambassador's quarters, by which means he receives protection; otherwise he had been knocked on the head by some of the cavaliers here. The Spanish ambassador under hand does all that ever he can against R. C.'s legate, and yet cannot prevail for the king of Poland's ambassador; for since my last to you, they both received a denial, as from the general diet, who would not engage in either of their quarrels; at which R. C.'s ambassador and friends are sad, but comforted, that the emperor told them, every prince apart might give to R. C. what aids they pleased; and so he might make his applications, which the said ambassador of R. C. is intended to do; and if he cannot succeed so, he will go from hence within twelve days. He blames much the ambassador of Spain.
The coronation of the empress should have been upon Monday last, but the news from Vienna of the death of her last daughter coming over night caused that ceremony to be deferred till Monday next. The emperor's being much troubled with the gout concurred with the former.
There is none of the electors now here, but Mentz; but many princes, some whereof will depart after the coronation. The emperor, it is thought, will depart for Vienna the 24th of September next; others say he will not till October or November. There is no certainty yet of his journey.
Some letters bring, that the king of Poland's affairs go well against the Cossacks, and that Chimilniski is much distressed by the Transylvanian; and that the Tartars promise relief; and that the king of Poland is intended to hinder the relief; which is all I hear from them parts.
An intercepted letter.
I am now returned to this towne, after a long visitt made to my friends in the country; and truly I find many of the friends of Mr. Jackson very ready to contribut towards the putting him againe into trade; but I find alsoe some (who seeme to wish him well) somewhat backward, and they pretend the improbabilitie of his thriving in his merchandising way during theise troublesome times; and that they are soe advised by some in those parts, where you reside. And one or two letters I have seen from amongst you, that have much phlegme and melancholy in them; and thereby many are utterly discouraged from assisting him. I shall indeavour to excite all that I speake with to advance him what they can, assuringe them, that there may be a way for active and ingenious men to thrive, even in theise bad times. On Munday morning last there was some hopes, that the St. Mallows merchants would have agreed with theire adversaries about the late sea-prise, but that same day the difference did widen againe.
The last weeke John Lilbourne was five times at his triall at the sessions-house, where he most couragiously defended himselfe from Mr. Steele the recorder his violent assaults, with his old buckler, magna charta; soe that they have let him alone, although he be not yeat quitted. Cromwell thought this fellow soe considerable, that during the time of his triall he kept three regiments continually in armes about St. James. There were many tickets throwne about with these words;
Lilbourne encountred Prideaux with soe many opprobrious termes, that he caused him absolutely to quit the field. Titus was one of Lilbourne's accusers, and the duke of Buckingham's name is much used therein. Sir, I had almost forgot to acquaint you, that that arch-villaine Bampfield hath bin lately with Cromwell; but as for the particulars of his business I shall deferr untill another my next, not having time to enquire it out throughly, especially since I keepe my chamber, being in some seare of the vertigo. I believe you have senn the new declarion of the representative, otherwise you should have receaved it from,
An intercepted letter designed for Paris.
I Have not yet heard from you by this post, although it be now Thursday four in the afternoone; the things are not yet come to my hands, but they are past Calais, and I expecte them dayly here. To save the trouble and losse of the exchange, I desire my friend would get that money into his hand, which is to be payd to Mr. Huntington's factor, and out of that to discharge this and what is due to Mr. Jones, &c. and let the rest be returned to me, and I will make it up. Desire him to write speedily about it; for the delay of it will much retard his businesse here, the factor not being able to disburse much himselfe, he wonders, he hath received noe answer from him to his four former letters, and desired a new direction for seare least some neglect or mistake should miscarry the other. I pray send a particular answer to the businesse, and with speed; for I am engaged to see the factor satisfied.
Our newes is little, onely the Dutch treaty goes slowly on; and most be of opinion, it will come to nothing: on Friday they had a conference with our general and some other of the councell; but his excellency rattled them in a speech three quarters of an houre long.
He brought all theire miscarriages home to their owne doores, and insisted much on Trumpe's begining the war. We would seigne have that consessed, that upon that ground we might prosecute our revenge against him, for neither reparation for the past, nor safety for the future is so much desired by us, as the death or banishment of that man: his ruine and the declension of the house of Nassau will be the greatest motive to peace. However our owne necessities and disorders at home doe very much incline us to accommodation; and believe it, we shall not onlie decline our owne demands, but grant much of theires, if they can make it appear to us, that they meane honestly, and that it shall not lye in the power of the prince of Orange to breake the peace, when that party findes it for their advantage soe to doe. We hope the queene of Swede will open the Easterne Trade, and assist against the Dane; if not, we declare her the greatest dissembler in the world. We have intimation this weeke, that the Dane cooles in the Scottish king's and Dutch businesse, and that all other princes and states resent either of theire concernment, but indifferently, which possibly may heighten us agen in this treaty. On the other side we conceive, that a peace with the Dutch would make a civill war there among themselves, and consequently some provinces would revolt to other princes; and they or the prince of Orange might soe asslict Holland, as to necessitate them to fall into our armes for protection: but the Spanyard doth all he can in private to carry on the war, and certeinly he assists with money. At present we are preparing ten ships for the relief of Bourdeaux; they are lusty ships, but pretended to goe on the merchants accompt. They are to victuall with corne and other provision on the charge of the Bourdelois agent. They receive theire men in Ireland, and rendevous at Ply mouth; the Spanish ambassador secures the ships: this is private, and I believe will be suddaine, unlesse some new and greate alteration happen. John Lilbourne is put of till the next sessions. It is not to be imagined, how much esteeme he hath got onely for vindicating the ancient lawes and liberties of the people against the usurpations of this tyme. Our parliament have had a long debate about tythes, but could not come to a resolution; soe it is referred to the consideration of a committee. It may be they doe not thinke it seasonable to disgust so numerous an interest as the ministers and lawyers in this conjuncture; so that probably the ministers may enjoy one harvest more, and the lawyers one other terme; but as soone as a peace with Holland is concluded, and some other difficulties over, they may be sure to drinke of the cup, as well as the rest of their neighbours. On Sunday last the soldiers came into the church at Westminster with drums and trumpets, whilest they were at sermon; and there made such a noise, that the preacher could not be heard: the same day a woman preached in the pulpit at Somerset-house, but was carried away by the soldiers, or else the people would have stoned her. All things are out of frame, and soe is our new parliament like to be also in a short time; for already they breake palpably into factions; some of them refuse their lodgings in Whitehall, saying, they will not be at cost to remove, and furnish them, being consident they shall not fit long. Here is a party run counter to the interest of their army, although they are sensible, it may not onely be their ruine, but also of the whole assembly; so transitory are the things of this world. I wonder much, I heare nothing from you by this post concerninge the letter of attorney. I must entreate all your newes, but with circumspection, and carefully expressed. I pray saile me not, as you love
I am told, that the Swedes agent demands the guns we lately tooke as Dutch prises, pretending they belong to his mistresse. A thousand men run from our fleete, when they they were last on our coast, and above 1500 sicke and dead . . . . . . and instantly for sea againe.
Mynbeer Haubeis to Jongestall, one of the Dutch ambassadors at London.
I Could wish, that the negotiation had ended with more fruit, as it doth appear it is like to do by your last letter, and likewise by that to their high and mighty lordships. It seems it doth not please the great God as yet, that we should have a peace with the English. I did always fear it, and now the lords of Holland do perceive what will become of it, and may repent in time. We must commend to God our good business, and expect the issue. Our fleet is ready, either going out, or is already out. I could wish we had been sooner ready to have done some damage to our enemy. Out of France we have news, that the business of the alliance goes on to our hearts desire. Monsieur Bordeaux doth complain, that their high and mighty lordships commissioners in England do not deal plainly and roundly with him. In Friesland the states are assembled to find out measures to raise money; and it is resolved, that the three hundredth penny of all goods shall be paid. There are three of the members, that are agreed upon this; but Oostergou doth yet oppose it. The states of Holland are likewise assembled, and so are the states of Zealand, who by their ordinary commissioners have caused to be brought into the generality their provincial advice of the 3d of September 1652, last week, concerning a captain general, withe the declaration and consequence thereof; wherewith the lords of Holland do find fault, and will object against it. Utrecht looks upon Holland, and will act accordingly. I hope to speak with you shortly by word of mouth.
The Dutch ambassador at London to the states of Zealand.
High and mighty lords,
My lords, the lieutenant colonel Lilbourne mentioned often in our former letters, hath found so much inclination in the people here, and in divers countries round about, that divers petitions have been presented for his releasement, signed by a multitude of people; and being heard by his sworn judges, knew to make so many exceptions, that the final conclusion of his business is deferred for a month. The council of state by his excellency and the former council of thirteen being made up to the number of thirty, doth consist at present in these following thirty persons: general Cromwell, M. G. Lambert, Harrison, and Disbrowe, colonel Thomlinson, Bennet, Sydenham, &c. and now all papers and speeches are addressed to them, without adding of the word of excellency, only to the lords of the council of state. In the new parliament was first brought into deliberation the abolishing of tythes; and with great tugging and division of opinions on both sides debated, it was at last concluded, that all lands charged with tythes shall be excused from paying any more henceforward. And because many were of opinion, that some good course ought to be taken beforehand, to provide some other maintenance for the ministers, and to give some reasonable satisfaction to all particular persons interested, who have bought the spiritual tythes of the state for great sums of money, there was nothing concluded in the business, but referred to a committee to examine and make report. Concerning the prisoners at Chelsea we have made hitherto no further expedition, than that the old men and boys shall be released, and the rest better used than formerly; although others believe, that they under that pretence shall be sent to serve on shipboard. By reason of the good officers we have appointed to look to the sick, many of them are recovered and gotten well again. We are this day informed by one we sent expressly to Chelsea College, that those that are well in health are fetcht away day after day under colour of setting them to work in their timber wharss upon the river, and about the building of their ships; but it is to be feared, that it is really to send them to serve on shipboard.
We shall not omit to further, as much as shall lie in our power, your high and mighty lordships resolution of the 24th of July, which we have already done from time to time. Your high and mighty lordships resolution of the 18th of this month concerning the particular powers, we had agreed upon it amongst ourselves for each to take the same upon him. We shall henceforward regulate ourselves accordingly. And concerning that of the 24th of July, concerning the town of Embden, we shall endeavour to accomplish with all faithfullness. The post came in but at noon, so that for this time we had no time to inform ourselves; by the next we shall be able to inform your high and mighty lordships of that, and advise you likewise of some other affairs.
John de Witt to Nieuport and Beverning, two of the Dutch ambassadors at London.
The lord Vett presiding at present in the assembly of their high and mighty lordships, did last Monday in the name of the lords his superiors declare in the said assembly, that the province of Zealand did think fit to proceed to the choice of a captain general; and for that charge did nominate the lord prince of Orange, and for his lieutenant Grave William stadtholder; adding withal, that the lords states of Zealand were resolved to send very suddenly upon this subject to the states of Holland. This business will cause great prejudice to this state. Many will the divisions be amongst us, if not mitigated. I foresee this storm coming upon us.
If you continue in England, and that your treaty is like to go on, I will send you a character. Pray let none of the rest of your commissioners see this letter; and be sure not to leave it out upon your table, that any of them ever get to fee it.
Vande Perre to de Vogelaer at Amsterdam.
Here is every day strongly and heartily laboured for the setting forth to sea more ships; and I am certainly informed, they will have some more ready within a few days to set fail out of the river, besides twelve new ones upon the stocks, stronger and bigger frigates than any they have built yet. They labour here at their work without murmuring. Besides these there are at least twenty ships more expected from the west and other parts, amongst which is the Sovereign for one, which for want of men hath not been serviceable hitherto.
The desire of the commissioners of Bourdeaux hath been so far consented unto by the government here, that eight serviceable merchant ships shall be hired and manned with our prisoners. This we endeavour to prevent by all means possible; and we are seconded by monsieur de Neusville. This government would be glad to have that town relieved, if it be not done already, as some say it is. I peceive their speculations lye that way, although this government here is loth to give a direct order and conducement for the doing of it; and it may be principis gratia they cannot do it. The differences, divisions, and tumults, that have lately happened in our country, and are still threatning to break out again, may chance to cause, that the negotiation, which is diligently endeavoured by cur lords, may come to take no effect, especially if the said tumults do break out again.
All the world (that is outlandish publick ministers, who hang at present upon the government here) have their eyes upon their high and mighty lordships commissioners. The one hopeth, the other seareth. We are certain, that the government here hath not yet perfected any treaty with any one of them; neither do they intend to do it, till such time it be known what issue our business will take; which doth yet remain floating inter spem & metum. The government here seemeth to take our business to heart before the rest. Yesterday was the last conference, and then there was present general Cromwell himself. I believe there will not be another conference till Monday next.
Beverning to de Witt.
The conference of last Friday did not end as we wish'd it might and hoped for; but since, the earnestness and vigour on our parts used, and the weightiness of our reasons hath disposed the English lords commissioners to a full and serious report to the council of state, who did likewise so well relish it, that by a committe of some few commissioners, amongst the rest the lord general for one, was our business debated, together with our last answer we delivered in, from five till six of the clock, and was resolved to send by an answer in writing, whereby they declare, that the government here, &c. the answer being set down in such general terms, that we thought we ought to be informed with further and particular reasons of the inward intention of the government here; therefore in a conference yesterday, where his excellency was present and spoke himself as formerly, and did highly insist upon it; and we doubt not according to the reception we had made us, but that we shall receive a further clearing and opening of the words upon our memorandum, we delivered in to day, and shall be able to judge further of the whole business. And because we do think, that whilst in and about those particulars it may be some points of importance, and likewise not unserviceable, may fall out and be beyond our instructions; therefore that we separate ourselves, and that some of us come over with all speed to make a full report of all circumstances to your high and mighty lordships, and to understand your lordships nearer intentions therein; desiring that this and our foregoing may be kept very secret. Here is very great pressing of seamen to supply the places of those, that are said to die in great numbers of the plague aboard their ships. The Portugal ambassador would sain have a treaty with us concerning the king his master and the states, that they may be composed whilst we are here. We told him, we had no commission to treat about any such business. Their high and mighty lordships may take it into consideration.
A Letter of intelligence.
Quant au Sr Keyser, il est party vers Dennemarck. Le sujet de sa deputation sera principalement l'emprunt des gros navires, & puis la liquidation ou constitution d'un obligation sur la somme, que ce roy doit à cest estat: n'a autre instruction que trois resolutions. L'on doute fort, si le roy voudra prester ses navires, & il est apparent, que le Sr Keyser s'eloigné expressement d'icy pour n'estre pas dans le præsent temps tumultueux icy. Et l'estat fait ceste deputation pour monstrer, quod omnia tentant; car la populace croit fermement, que les magistrats ne font point de devoir, ny tout ce qu'ils peuvent contre les Anglois; ains que l'estat est capable de faire des efforts beaucoup plus grands, voire suffisants pour rompre la teste aux Anglois. Et quand on leur dit, que avons faute, 1. de bons navires; 2. de matelots; 3. d'argent; le peuple dit, 1. qu'on eust du faire bastir des bons navires en temps: 2. qu'on eut deu donner des grands gages aux matelots des le commencement: 3. que le peuple contribuera richement, si on assume le prince d'Orange pour le præsent. La flotte de Tromp ne pourra estre tant tout que de 106 navires sans les bruslots: tout cela sont ses vieils navires: seulement les deux navires bastis pour Gennes y sont adjoustes de nouveau. A Sardam se bastissent 20 bons navires nouveaux; & voudroit on bien, que les admirautes les achetassent; & je croy, que cela se sera (si l'argent fluoit un peu) comme de même ailleurs se batissent de navires nouveaux; & selon toute apparence, si les deputes reviennent re infecta, aveq l'assumtion du prince on sera un grand nouvel effort.
Nos deputes en Angleterre n'envoyant encore nulle response du parlement ou du conseil: aussy escrivent de n'en avoir nulle finalle; ains que dans les deux conferences ils n'ont que verbatiser touchant la satisfaction & securité sur quoy veritablement les deputes ne sont pas instruits; ains seulement pour faire l'alliance, qu'ils croyent estre asses de securité, & pour la satisfaction, que cest estat a souffert bien plus de dommage. Et ces deputes ne recevront point d'autre ordre; ne soit que la Hollande envoyast quelque ordre secret & particulier; ce qu'elle n'oseront, car le peuple enrageroit. Le reste de leurs nouvelles ne sont que nouvelles communes, bruits, &c. remarquants entre autres, qu'on n'a point du liste de ceux, qui sont le nouveau parlement, en signe qu'ils sont gens fort neufs, & cy devant inconnus & obscurs. Tel Goch du conseil de Brasil en est revenu icy, a eu audience dans les Estats Generaux, & harangué fort pathetiquement du lamentable estat des Hollandois en Brasil; des richesses innombrables, qu'on pourroit tirer de la, si on y redressoit la compaignie; qu'on y possede un rivage de 300 lieues, mais que les Portugais sont maistres de la campaigne; & si on n'y envoye point de secours, qu'au moins on y veuille envoyer des navires pour transporter de la icy, & sauver le pauvre reste des Hollandois, qui sans cela mourront de faim; & on escoute bien cela; mais quel effect tant qu'il la guerre dure avec l'Angleterre? Le roy de Spagne a offert de traiter icy contre les Portuguais; mais on a nul goust de plus clever l'Espagne; ains on doit s'allier avec la France. Cy joint va la suite de ce concept. Par l'absence du roy n'estoit plus guere avancé en cela. Ce que les deputes escrivent en secret est au greffier Ruysch; c'est que mecredy le 13/24 ils avoient eu conference bien deux heures de suite, ou son excellence le lord general avoit esté present; que on n'y avoit que contesté & verbalisé touchant le prælim. de la satisfaction & securité. Et n'ayant seeu rien effectuer en cela le 13/23, que vendredy le 15/25 on avoit eu une nouvelle conference, qu'en icelle ils avoient esperé d'obtenir plus; mais que l'issue d'icelle avoit esté aussy malheureuse & instructueuse qu'auparavant; qu'ils avoient laissé ou données au mains de ces commissaires un memoire, dans lequel ils persistoient sur ce que des le commencement ils avoient declaré suivant leur instruction, pour couper à ceux du conseil tout imagination & esperance de la prætendue satisfaction; & ayant la dessus une categorique response de ce conseil, ils esperoient de rendre conte de tout bientost aux Estats Generaux; voulant dire, qu'ils retourneroient bientost icy en Hollande. Ces deputes n'ont pas demandé autre ordre ny instruction plus expresse; & aussy on ne leur envoye point d'autre.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
The princess royal having given to understand the day before yesterday by her counceller Cromom and the rehenmaster Foreest to the states of Holland the inclination, that the king her brother had to come into these countres, the said states told and desired the said princess, that she would diswade the king her brother from coming hither, and resolved that on the behalf of Holland shall be propounded to the generality, that hereafter no king, no potentate be admitted to come into the territories of this state, without having made it first known to the lords states; and that then their high and mighty lordships should debate whether they thought it fit or no.
This day their high and mighty lordships received letters from Leghorn, wherein they are advertised, that captain Tromp meeting with some English ships in the Mediterranean sea, who had taken a Straits ship from us worth 20,000l. sterl. that he had retaken the same again, and one of the English ships.
Vande Perre to De Bruyne, pensionary of Middleburgh in Zealand.
We have had never a conference since my last, but one, which was yesterday in the afternoon; in the which was delivered to us first an answer in writing upon a certain memorandum of ours left in the hands of the English commissioners at the last conference. Therein were used not only words and periods quite differing from the former, none neither (though in general terms) is given the introduction to the treaty chiefly, which is seconded by his excellency, who is commonly present, declaring by word of mouth, with several expressions of inclination once to get out of this present luctuous war; to which we had undertaken this day to give our answer to the council of state, which was done this morning at seven of the clock, desiring in the same memorandum to have speedy conference again therein, to renew in writing, or by word of mouth, the particulars of the said introduction, which I believe will be granted us to morrow; in which there will be opening made of divers particulars, and of the greatest importance (as we are informed by the by) which will also require, that some of the lords commissioners here should go over to make report of all by word of mouth; and I do intend as much as lyeth in me, to bring the business to that pass, that three lords, of each province one, do take upon them that charge; hereby declaring, notwithstanding, that those, who remain here in the absence of their confratres, shall not undertake to meddle with any thing, that concerneth the negotiation; and to this end there must be a special act made and signed by all; adding likewise, that in case the journey of the said lords be taken by way of Zealand, and that I myself (in case the lords states of that province think fit) be permitted here to remain, till that the two other lords shall have made report to their high and mighty lordships, and likewise to their lords superiors; and that being come back again, I do accompany them back again hither presently after the particular report, unless their high and mighty lordships should think it fit for them to come alone; whereby (under favour) they will be best serv'd. In the mean time it is perceived, that the treaty must be carried on very speedily, and will be prest for here in all likelihood. Likewise it is not to be feared, that after the said report rugged speech can be made in any fashion, and without remarkable prejudice. What secrecy there ought to be used about it, I shall leave to your wisdom and prudent judgment. The substance of the said introduction consists in these words: This state doth not propound to themselves or aim at the obtaining of greater sums of money for satisfaction from the United Provinces, very much preferring peace upon just and honest grounds, before any consideration of that nature; and that this state is willing to expect security by uniting both states together in such manner, as they may become one people and commonwealth for the good of both. This being writ thus far, I am informed by private letters out of Zealand of the resolution of the lords states of Zealand concerning the captain generalship lately taken, and likewise of the divers commotions in several towns amongst the people; which being known to the government and the commonalty here, will not a little hinder the treaty.
I will also add one word more; that one of our commissioners walking in St. James's park, met there the Portugal ambassador; who coming towards him, made our commissioner to address himself to him. Amongst the rest of the discourse the ambassador pitched upon the difference about Brasil, and shewed great inclination to have entered into treaty about it, but our commissioner assured, he had no order to do it from their high and mighty lordships.
Vande Perre to Van Vryberge.
The treaty between this commonwealth and our states begins to look with a more pleasing countenance than what I told you in my last of the 25th of July; for it hath taken altogether another course; and as I look upon the business at present, it doth seem to me, that it will be soon ended for the benefit of both states. But I do very much fear, that the hanging out of the prince of Orange's colours will put some stop to it.
Vande Perre to Van Vryberge.
Here is a great deal of talk of our fleet, that they have been out at sea three days, 140 ships strong; and some dare to ask, whether we have not any more ships to make a bridge for an army to march over into our country. Yesterday the lords had a conference with the English lords, whereof one was my lord general Cromwell again; which is looked upon by many as a good omen, that the business of both nations is taken to heart.
Beverning to Ommeren.
I Am glad, that my lord De Witt is chosen to the pensionaryship of Holland, and I do very well know, that you have contributed your direction and favour highly for it. I must acknowledge myself bound to you for the obligation, in regard of the service our native country will receive by his care and diligence; so that we daily see some remarkable signs of God's blessing upon our state; amongst which is none of the least your lordship's vigorous and generous resolution to help to maintain the dear-bought liberty of our country. We are every day busy in particular, and likewise in public conferences, to propound both sides interest of our negotiation with significant words; and will refer you to the hope I have thereof to that of myn heer De Witt.
Extract out of the resolutions of the lords states of Holland and West Friesland, taken in their lordships assembly the 1 of August 1653. [N. S.]
After deliberation had, it is thought sit and understood, that a letter be writ forthwith to all the respective colleges of the admiralties to keep prisoners, and stop all Englishmen, that are or shall be taken hereafter by any of the ships belonging to this state; and that the like notice be given by land to the commander in chief in the Mediterranean sea to do the like.
Letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Yours I received by the last ordinary, requiring my diligence what directions are given to the galliots and other vessels, which are sent out by the several admiralties to receive and give intelligence; and also to let you know the real posture of our fleet here. In answer to all which, if you please to make a recollection of what extracts and letters you had from me, you shall find most of what you desire, that is past; as also by my extracts at present so far as intelligence comes to the States General from their ministers. But what galliots are sent from the admiralties or by the particular admiralties or directors, and not accounted for to the states, I cannot give you, being resident here; from whence I am confident no one man can give you more than you have; neither do I know I shall be long able to continue it, for some reasons incident to me.
Our deputies there hope not much by their negotiation; and I do not wonder at it, for they are not so qualified, as these states use to send their ministers to other princes or states by the individual orders of every particular province.
You may see by the extracts, how near we are to make choice of a general of the family of Nassau, whose faction daily increaseth, and six of the provinces for them. The seventh of Holland is divided, and most of the people, yea within Amsterdam, for the Orange faction; so that in my opinion there must be suddenly a captain general and admiral of that family, being so pressed for.
In the last troubles you heard at Bergen op zoom, when all were in a disorderly tumultuous manner, and when the governor to appease the people came to them, being called, the lord Beverweert, natural son to count Maurice of Nassau, all the people cryed out for the Orange family, and all concluded thereby. You may believe, as I have written to you in my former, that our league with France is at end. You have herewith Mazarin's letter as to that matter sent expresly; and the full account of the treaty from Boreel, as you have had in some extracts, above a month since, the particulars of the league defensive. The true state of our fleet at present is, that Van Tromp with eighty stout ships of war is now ready by Zealand, and begins to be seen. I believe he is at sea by this time. We have thirty other tall ships in the river of Texell, tall vessels for war, to join to Van Tromp, and to be led by vice-admiral De Witt. I do not number fire ships, victuallers, galliots, or other small vessels among the eighty and thirty. What addition we expect from the Dane, is not yet determined, as you may see by our sending the lord Keyser to that king.
I must not forget to tell you, that France pressed, that these states should contribute to their war against Spain; but that is near over, for these will not do it, but to the contrary endeavour to get Spain into league with them against England, as Spain desires a league with them against Portugal. But these are secrets in summo gradu, and are not yet come to any perfection.
The extracts you have as follow, which I desire may not be exposed to public view of many, if you expect to have a continuance of them; for our deputies have good intelligence there, however they get it.
You ought not to doubt, that I contribute all that depends on me for the accomplishment of a design, wherein so many advantages do meet together, as well for this state as that republic. You know, that all the time past I have not spared my care nor addresses to hinder any slackness in the union, that has been and ought to be betwixt us and you; which ought to persuade you, that I always carry the same spirit and the same zeal to renew so strongly and so strictly the confederation in treaty, that it shall not stand of France its part; but it shall be so done as never to be soluble. I esteem, that you have the same sentiment, and that after you have approved, that there is nothing so secure and profitable as the ancient amity, you shall consider ours as that, which shall not be wanting to you, and that concealeth no danger under any specious hope. It ought to be desired, that so good a thought should not be longer retarded. I will say no more to you, and will end after having protested, that your interests are part of ours, and are as dear to me; and that in a most sincere and true affection of him, who is
Upon the proposition made by the lord Keyser (named their highnesses deputy to the king of Denmark) it was resolved, that the resolution of the 12th instant, wherein he is ordered to adjust the conjunction of the ships of that king with those of their mighty highnesses, shall serve him for instructions, as to propose to the king or his commissioners for so many of his greatest ships in the Sound to be exchanged for some less ships of ours, that shall guard the said Sound.
It is also ordered, that it shall be written to the lords of the admiralty of Amsterdam and quarter of the north, to the end that every one of them shall dispatch a swist galliot to be at the disposition of the said lord Keyser, that he may send in them express couriers, as well to their high and mighty lordships, as to admiral Tromp. Upon occasion also the said lord Keyser is by these authorized to present to the said king of Denmark, that in case of conjunction of his ships with those of their highnesses, as his said majesty may make use of the mariners of these countries, who by these presents are dispensed withal from the precedent placart of their mighty highnesses. Also the said deputy Keyser is to present, that the copies of their highnesses resolution concerning the affairs of Sweden, Denmark, England, and of the sea affairs, shall be weekly sent to his said majesty.
After deliberation it is resolved, that it shall be written to the lords deputies of their mighty highnesses, who are in Zealand and Texell, that in the presence of lord admiral Van Tromp and vice admiral De Witt respectively, they shall with all efficacious language and admonition at the going out of the fleet of these states encourage the officers and mariners for the service of the country, as to invest and attack the ships of the enemies, and enter into them; declaring that the ships, which shall be by them taken, with all their dependencies, shall be freely as reward their own, without any detraction or deduction. And the said deputies besides (in the said form above) shall promise to the mariners, that first shall enter into the ships of the enemy, viz. to the first, second, third, and so forth by order, shall recompence as their lordships shall think fit; which recompence or reward shall be approved of by their mighty highnesses, and duly paid to the deservers.
It is also resolved, that it shall be written to the said lord admiral Van Tromp, that he publish in the name of their mighty highnesses, and command to be declared to all the fleet, that no captain or other officers of the said fleet shall part from it, without his special consent and license, upon pain of death for so doing, without any pardon.
Upon the proposition of the lord Keyser, deputy of their mighty highnesses, who is to depart to morrow for Denmark, it is ordered, that the said Keyser by these presents is authorized to treat as to the number of the ships of war of the king of Denmark, to be joined to the fleet of these states, and likewise upon the manner of their conjunction with the king or his commissioners, and to conclude that, which his lordship shall esteem most convenient for the service of the country.
As to the second point, which concerns satisfaction for any of the said ships at Denmark, which in fight with the enemy might be lost; the said lord Keyser is altogether to decline as not agreable, in case it should be insisted upon on the part of the said king.
After deliberation it is resolved, that it shall be declared to the directors of the company of the East Indies, that the intention of their mighty highnesses is, that for the service of the country against the English they shall provide and make ready all their ships, and that they shall remain a month or two under the command of Van Tromp, and not to be recalled from thence without express order or permission from the said lord admiral Van Tromp. And they shall take care, that the said ships shall be compleatly ready (as many as are fit for service) against the time, that the fleet of these states, which is now in the Wielingen, shall be ready to set to sea. And their mighty highnesses shall punctually perform, what they have promised to them at the due time and place. And their highnesses shall take care, that the said company shall be satisfied for the damages, that they shall receive by reason of their said order, either in their ships, ammunition, or artillery. And vice admiral De Witt is ordered to visit the said ships, and to see which of them are fit for service, and to make them ready and well fitted.
The present lord deputies for the province of Zealand, by special order from their principal lords, have exhibited and caused to be read in the assembly their provincial advise, as it was formed the 22d of September of the last year 1652; as in order to establish a head of consideration and quality for the conduct of the affairs of war, as well by sea as by land, under the title of captain general and admiral general, with their due dependencies; desiring for reasons represented by word of mouth, as also comprehended in the advise of their province, that the rest of the provinces would be pleased to conform themselves thereunto, and to bring in order thereto with all speed the advices of their several provinces; and that this their advice may be registered here de verba ad verbum.
Whereupon the present lord deputies of the province of Guelderland have demanded a copy in writing of the said advice, to communicate thereof to their principal lords; declaring withal, that the proposition should be deferred for two or three days, according to the request of the lords of the province of Holland and the lords of Utrecht.
The present lord deputies of Friesland and Groningen have severally given thanks to the lords of Zealand for the overtures made; and have besides conformed themselves to the abovesaid provincial advice, accepting to make also their propositions when it comes to their turns.
The present lords deputies of Overyssel have declared, that they were satisfied with the propositions and deliberations for two or three days time as ordered; and withal demanded a copy of the said advice, to communicate the same to their principal lords.
Mr. Cha. Longland to secretary Thurloe.
I Hav kept a constant course in wryting to you according to your commands; but hetherto I hav not heard, that any of my letters hav bin received by you. However according to my duety I shal continue in giving you account of what passes here in refference to the enemy. The seven sail of Duch that brauht the Harry Bona and her pryz, hav continued in this port till this morning, when four of them, such as ar the proper ships of that state, departed towards Cales, where they are to receiv or meet orders to go hom. They have carryed the Harry with them, but left her pryz here to sel. Here remain likwys four other men of war, that hav bin so made in thes seas from marchant men. Tis likwys here reported for truth, that al such ships as hav bin taken up from marchant men into that servis, shal lykwys remain in thes seas as a guard; whereof ther wil be about a dozen; and our states quondam ship the Lepard is to be admiral of them. I kno not, how it wil pleas the state at hom to order things in relation to thes parts; but certainly if they could spare a squadron of twenty saile to remayn here, I am very confident they should maintain themselves by what purchase they myht get; for since we hav bin outed, al the trade of the Levant is in the hands of the Duch; and now every day is expected a ship of theyrs, that is worth fifty thousand pounds; and this is a place, wher any comodity whatsoever wil yeld mony. I am confident, if the dispach of such a fleet were suden aud closly carryed, most of the Duch here in thes seas would sal irreparably into theyr hands. Althoh the late great victory, and the happy prossecution of it, be suffitiently known here, yet, sir, by your favour the many petty affronts, and disgraces, and losses we hav had here by that nation, ouht to hav a particuler vindication in thes parts; stil submitting my self to thos better judgments, that hav the ordering of thos great affaires. I hav given you such intelligence from Rom, as I can procure by the hands of our Inglish ther. If you pleas to impart unto me more of your mynd therin, you shal redily be serv'd therein by,
Letter of intelligence.
Yours I received, and sent away to Ratisbon more solito. Here are no news but our army and the French army are lying within two leagues one of the other; and some expect they will fight suddenly, at least if Condé can, who gives all provocation he can to Turenne for a battle; but Turenne yet declines it.
The archduke is much better in health, and by the last post received letters from Stockholm, assuring his highness, that the Spanish ambassador, that was there, Pimentel, is gone from Sweden in the best ship the queen has for Spain, which ship is ordered to attend the said ambassadors return, and coming or going not to strike into any port or harbour, but that wherein the ambassador shall give him orders. The ambassador going in this manner, and his return speedily expected, doth amaze many; and the more, that the ambassador left his wife and children in Sweden, with all his family, and carried only two or three with him. Here is nothing more at this time from,