A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 2, 1654. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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March (4 of 5)
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
There hath been an English frigat upon our coasts amongst the fishermen, (for there are not yet any other ships at sea) who were put to the flight, or at least into a fright; and consequently the lords of Holland, who have furnished the admiralty of Amsterdam with 150 thousand gilders; so that great diligence is used to set forth the fleet. Yet nevertheless it is peace, that is desired; and it would be a sad lamentable case, if the contrary should happen. The states of Holland do yet remain together for no other end or business, but for this expectation alone. The embassadors had order to lose no time; but to perfect the treaty immediately, and without merchandizing any long time about it, or to break off, and return; for the navigation and commerce cannot continue so, and remain at uncertainties. For the inclusion of Holstein and Anhalt in the peace, I do not see any great instance made; and there is as yet no resolution taken about it. Here are the commissioners from Embden making complaint, how that the earl hath obtained a penal mandate from the emperor against the city, commanding not to constrain the countries to pay certain 600 men of the garison of Embden. Those of Embden do desire, that they would send commissioners thither from thence; but the earl having once litem–contesti before the emperor, will not be taken off thence; so that is another case, which this state hath yet to decide with the emperor. A second is that of Malta, for which there are now commissioners appointed; but they will only sing the old song; for the word restituat is not in use amongst the commonwealth, no more than the word resolvat is amongst the principalities.
In the mean time that the commissioners of the admiralty of Amsterdam are solliciting here a subsidy for the equipping of ships of war, the English, at least four or five frigats, have been here upon the coasts, and have taken several merchant men; yea they have done more harm and damage, well three times the value of the subsidy.
On tuesday in the afternoon, there arrived a galliot from England from the embassadors; which, instead of the conclusion of the peace, doth bring nothing but delays; yea almost the contrary to peace, namely great preparations for the war, which hath alarmed the embassadors, that they sent this galliot expresly to give notice and advertisement thereof to the state, and exhort them to prepare and arm likewise. Whereupon there are very vigorous resolutions taken to finish that little, which remains of the equipment, and afterwards to furnish the ships almost ready with ammunition, provisions, and men; and to this effect, there are letters writ to the colleges of the admiralties, and also to the provinces, to furnish what they are remaining behind of the subsidy of the millions; also to the lord admiral Opdam. Item, there is advertisement given to the resident of Denmark, to write to his king. In short, this is a great alteration, which doth cause two things: first it doth irritate and exasperate the people against the English; for holding the peace as good as done, they do believe, that the English do fail in their word. Secondly, this doth stir up the people to speak ill of the states of Holland, how that they are lulled asleep with hopes of the peace, and the false pretence thereof, as it is ordinary to cast and lay the faults or misfortunes upon the magistrates.
In the mean time it is also true, that some are angry in good earnest, by reason the commissioners came from England the last time before they had signed. Now they are afraid, that the English fleet will come, and lie before the Texell, and so thereby hinder the conjunction of the ships, which are to come from Zealand, Goree, and the Maese; but that hindrance is very little practicable.
Those of Embden do still daily press for the sending of a commissioner from the states general to East Friesland, to oppose the mandate of the emperor; but since the peace with England doth go backward, Holland will be fearful to engage there.
The embassador Boreel hath writ in his private advice, that the protector had given advertisement and assurance to Don Lewis de Haro, that he had not made, not would not make, peace or treaty with this state. And on the other hand we are made to believe, that the protector hath made an agreement with France, with the exclusion of this state, which do seem to me as so many phantoms, which the sole fear of the war doth insuse into us; and yet notwithstanding suror arma ministrat.
A letter of intelligence.
The embassador of France, who resideth here, told to a special friend of his, that he had letters from Mons. Bordeaux, embassador in London, wherein he affirms, that the lord protector is not well inclined to France; and that without great reparation to be made by France, he despairs of the good success of his negotiation; and that notwithstanding all the endeavours of the said Mons. Bordeaux's friends, the protector cannot be drawn of his side, till more must be done by France to please him.
The embassador Boreel, our embassador in Paris, writes, that the protector himself has written to Don Lewis de Haro, that notwithstanding the protector dissembled a peace with the states general, that he had no intention to conclude but for form–sake, in order to some other design. The letter of Boreel is of the 11th of March instant, to the gressier of the states general.
Our embassadors there have written hither two letters to the gressier, the first of the 13th instant, setting forth only the manner of their reception, entrance, &c. and therefore needless to send any copy of it. The second being of the 20th instant, you have word by word herewith.
You may see the said embassadors write, that they have penetrated by the means of their friends, that the English have thought to occupy the Sound. As soon as these letters were here received, and communicated to the states general present, the most strict orders were in post–hast sent to all the admiralties, that in all possible expedition they should make ready to set sail all the ships of war respectively within their several districts. But I can tell you, and that solidly, in confirmation of what I have written in my two former letters, that the English may do what they will; for the want of money is such here, that in two months of this day, the fleet of these states shall not be ready to set forth to sea. This I dare say exclusively, and I repeat it, I mean their whole fleet. Notice was also sent in great haste to the king of Denmark of the contents in the said letter of the 20th instant.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
We live here a miserable life at present, being tormented between hope and fear, and between confidence and jealcusy; and this is the condition of the best; but the common people are very much disturbed, and begin to rail at those that are in power; and I am confident, if that a sudden peace do not follow, that that party, which now rules in Holland, will be in a sad condition. But for my part, I cannot believe, that the English will destroy their friends, to set up their enemies in their place. The time of the year draws on, and the people are impatient. The other party laughs in their sleeves, and hopes to see a change. The states have given orders to their admiralties to get their ships ready as soon as they can, not knowing what the English intend by setting out so great a fleet. At present things are here in great disorder.
A letter of intelligence from Holland.
Assure yourselfe, I use all diligence to give you perticular advise of the fleete of men of warr, and other affayres here. 'Tis my only imployement, and I make it my worck. There is non livinge more desiers to serve his countrye then myselfe. The last expres to the Hage, and perticular merchants letters, brought newes that you are more vigorous in equipping your fleet then formerly, and that you sent 6000 landsouldiers to put aboarde the fleet, and yet were dayly preparinge more ships. It hath strangeley dasht the spirits of these, fearing they shall have no peace, and observe it puts a jealousie into the states; for vise–admiral de Ruyter, and yong Tromp, are at Amsterdam, to hasten out all their shipps with what speed possible; yet they have none gone from Amsterdam, or gunns, or men, or victuals aboard; but those they take in below in the river. The captaynes expect their orders dayly to fall downe. All the ships at Amsterdam are ready to fall downe; and yet it will be three weekes or a month before they will be furnisht with men and necessaryes to goe to sea. The common report is, the war will contineu, which will keep the seamen in seare to take service. They have need of more men now then formerly, there shipps being greater, and they have yet entertained none; only the drum beats for men to a ship belonging to Zealand. Their ships in North Holland, where I have bin this weeke, are in a lik readiness. You may be assured, they will fitt them so soone as may be; for the merchant–men must have convoyes both to the eastward and westward. If the treatye be not concluded before they are ready, it is resolved to send all their merchantmen about Ierland. As for their fleet of men of warr, they are uppon uncertaintyes how to dispose of them, otherwise then to have men in readiness, and attend your motions. I will the next week take a journey for Zealand and Rotterdam, and those parts, and take view of their ships, in what readines they are, and what they intend to doc; whereof I will give you perticular notice. Many are jealous your designe is for the Sound, which will cause them to hasten their fleet so much the more. Trye the covor of this letter.
Notice hath bin given to the king of Denmacrk, whoe doutles makes himselfe strong against an assault. I heare, if you intend thither, these will prosecute you; but you may be assured they cannot goe to sea in les then three weekes. They let Appleton's ship lye without reparation, thinkinge her unserviciable. Tis the ordinary news, that you have a 130 sayle ready, and 50 more sitting, which gives them admiration. Their number you have; since no others in these parts are taken into service. The last thirty, which weare ordered to be built, are under hand, and worckt on dilligently. They may perchance be ready in July, but I doe not belive itt. Concerninge them, more hereafter. This week Culpepper was at Amsterdam, to end a difference betwixt Webster and the queene, which he did; and the French ambassador is to come and redeeme the jewells out of the Lombard, for seventeen thousand pound sterling. Tis supposed cardinall Mazaryn hath bought them. He hath a great pennyworth of them. So now she hath very few or noe jewells more. What Mr. Webster bought, he hath most of them still, and will sell cheap, if any of our friends have a desier of them.
Major Boswell hath bin at Amsterdam; 'tis he, whoe broke out of the Tower the last yeare. I am told, he intends to goe shortly for Ingland uppon a designe (what it is, I knowe not) for his master Ch. Stewart. He is active for mischief. This is all I have for the present. I am
A letter of intelligence from Rotterdam.
A Discreet person, this day arrived here from the Hague, faith, that upon tuesday last there arrived an express from their embassadors at London, which alarmeth them all with apprehensions of a breach in the treaty, and of an invasion upon Denmark. The alarm, he faith, was so hot, that the states sat in consultation the greater part of the night, and have sent order post to rig up their disordered fleet; and likewise to the king of Denmark's court at Gluckstat by his resident, to give him his share of the alarm. The great strength of the English fleet was ready with many land–men designed to be put upon it, together with the delay in the six persons appointed to treat with the Dutch embassadors, with many other circumstances too long for this paper, are the grounds of this alarm. But we English of this town think the news too good to be true; and rather expect the sudden conclusion of the peace, which will put an end to our trade. All businesses in France, and the confines, go prosperously for that crown. The count of Harcourt hath surrendered Brisac, and all he held in Alsatia, and made his peace; which he did as soon as he heard of the commitment of the duke of Lorrain. The marshal of Hocquincourt, who posted suddenly from Paris some weeks since to his government of Peronne, is returned upon a kind letter of the king to him; and now other discontented persons appear in France. By the proceedings of the French army under the marquis of Faber in Liege, it is now evident, that they came thither, either upon concert with the said Lorrain, or at the least upon the hopes, that his commitment would cause a revolt in his army; which not succeeding, they have continued without action, keeping only a bridge of boats on the Maese.
My letters from Stockholm affirm considently, the queen of Sweden will in May resign her crown, reserving only a pension of 200,000 rixdollars for her support. Some say, she will go to travel to see the civil parts of the world; others that she will retire to a castle, and there spend her life in contemplation with divers learned men and women, (all Platonick lovers) in the nature of a civil recluse.
The king of Poland is hard put to it, there being actually entered into Lithuania 50,000 Muscovites, besides two other great armies of that nation, the one bending towards Smolensko, and the other marching between both, to join with either, as occasion shall be. The Cossacks and the Tartars are likewise in great numbers upon their march towards the other side of Poland. We here much apprehend the treaty betwixt England and France; and the more because the cardinal hath lately offered liberty to the Scotch king to stay there, who is now upon his remove hence.
Beuningen, the Dutch embassador in Sweden, to the states general.
My last to your H. and M. L. was the twentieth of this month. There is no doubt made, that the queen will persist in her resolution to resign up her crown. And to overcome the difficulty of the two hundred thousand rixdollars for her majesty's subsistence and maintenance, it is contrived, without any inconvenience to the revenues of the crown, that her majesty shall enjoy the revenues of Pomerania, as also of the island Oesel, and some means, which have been formerly given to count Magnus. It is said, that her majesty is to keep her residence at Wolgast, after she hath laid down her government. The embassadors of Muscovy having obtained leave to export some arms (fn. 1), are gone from hence. It is thought his requesting these arms was merely to found the intention of this crown, rather than any want of them. The embassador of England hath not effected here any thing of consequence. The said embassador speaks of going hence very suddenly.
Whitelocke, embassador in Sweden, to the protector.
May it please your Highnesse,
I have given a perticular account of the progresse of my negotiation this weeke in my letters to Mr. secretary Thurloe. All the judgement I cann yet make of it is this, that in case the peace be concluded with Hollande, and the Dane included, they will consent to a generall amity and commerce. In case the warre continue, or that the Dane be not included in the peace, they will then be ready enough for the other buisnes; about which I cann yet obteine no propositions from them. And I hold it unfitt as to the honnour of your highnesse and the commonwealth, to seeme to presse any thing of that nature, especially when I consider, that my beinge heere, and my buisnes in suspence, and carryed in secrett, doth the more amuse others, and is no prejudice to the other affayres of your highnesse. I confesse I see no ground to be instant for more than the generall amity and commerce, in case the peace be made, and the Dane included; and finding nothing in my instructions to the contrary, unlesse I receive other commaunds from your highnesse, I intend to conclude theruppon; and if any thinge be further desired, it will not be unseasonable, when the queene shall send her ambassadour (as shee tells me shee intendeth) to your highnesse. I shall pray to God for your happines, and ever remaine
Whitelocke, embassador in Sweden, to secretary Thurloe.
The rix admirall beinge with me, and discoursing of my busines, told me, that the queene had not as yet acquainted the councell therewith; and afterwards I beinge with prince Adolph, he spake to me of my busines, as others had done, friendly, and I likewise told him of my longe stayinge heere without any answere. Hee sayd that might bee by reason of the queene's designe of introducinge a change in the place. I told him, that I beelieved the friendship of Englande was worth the lookinge after, and that it would be all one, whether the treaty were by the queene, or successor, in regard it concerned the people of both the nations: that if the queene did consent to it, his royall highnes would not bee against it. He thereupon told me, that it would be very pleasing to his brother, whoe did beare a greate respect to the English nation, and soe did generally the Sweades. He further told me, that himselfe did not intermeddle in publique busines, and that he had never been present at the councell; yet doubted not in the least, but I should receive all satisfaction. I told him, I did beleive it, inasmuch as my lord the protector had sent me hither to testifie his respects to the queene and kingdome of Sweden, and to make them offers of the friendship of the commonwealth of England. He alsoe spake of the late kinge, and the proceedings betweene the parliament and him, wherein I was capable to informe him. He asked wherefore they did not rather poyson the king, or otherwise make him secretly away, than take his life so publiquely. I told him it was adjudged more agreable with justice, honour, and christianity, to bringe soe great an offender to a publique and legal tryall, rather then privately to make him away; and that every nation has their rights and particular lawes, accordinge to which they were governed. Wee had much other discourse on the same subject, and to the same effect. He shewed me much respect, and brought me to my coach, which I am informed he hath not done to any others. On the last Lord's day, Monsieur Blome (formerly a servant to the late duke of Buckingham, and now one of the chancellour's creatures, and by his meanes hath bin imployed as a publique minister abroade) came and dyned with me, and discoursed much of the change, which in probability would happen in this nation upon the queene's resignation, in which I said little, in regard of some persons that were then present, whoe understood us. But after dynner I perticulerly asked him, if he had heard the chancellor speake of deferringe my busines till the prince was crowned; he consessed, that he had heard the chancellor say, that hee beleived it would bee better to have my busines concluded after the prince's coronation, and that the league would be the more firme. I told him, that I imagined, that all acts of that nature, and concluded by the queene before her resignation, would be held authentique by her successor. Hee told me hee did beleive as much; but beinge soe neare a change, he thought it would be better to remitt the busines to the new king. I told him, that would take up much tyme, and that I knew not how soone my lord the protector would bee pleased to command me home. Hee said, that the busines would be soone dispatcht after the meeting of the rix–daght, which were never accustomed to sit longe; notwithstanding I hope to procure a dispatch of busines before that tyme, not knowinge any reason, wherefore the treaty at the present should not be as firme, as if it were left to the new kinge.
On munday count Erick Oxensterne came to me about nine o' clocke in the morning, and told me, the queene had commanded him to come to me, and to have some conference with me about my propositions; wherein shee was pleased to make use of his service, because at this tyme his father was very ill of an ague, and was not able himselfe to meete with me; and that his former indisposition of health, and extraordinary affaires, had bin some occasion of hinderance of the dispatch of my busines; as alsoe the incertainty of the issue of the treaty between England and Holland, and the great busines of the queene's intention. I told him, that I had longe expected some answere to be given to my busines, the greatest whereof had not dependance upon the treaty with Holland; that the queene's proposition was lately made; and that I had bin three moneths in this place without any answer to my busines, though I presumed, that the amity of England was gratefull to this nation, and merritted the acceptance. Hee said, that soe was the friendship of Sweden. I said, my lord protector had testified that by sendinge me hither. He replyed, that the queene had likewise sent Fewshall publique minister to England; and Monsieur Lagerfeildt was a long tyme there without affecting any thing. I said, that hee had often answeres to his propositions in the tyme of his being there; and that it was on his parte that a conclusion was not had thereupon. But I told him, that if hee pleased to proceed to a conference upon my propositions, I was ready to treat with him as I had alwaies ben to treate with my lord chancellor's father, for whose ill health I was hartilie sorrey. Hee told me hee was readie in the same way of secrecie as it had ben carried with his father, as hee said did appeare by Monsicur Bevengen's letters to his superiours, wherein he sayes, that the English ambassador did treate with none but the queene alone, and sometymes alone with the chancellor, whereby he could not possibly give them any account of my transactions; for he thought that not one person in Sweden, except the queene and the chancellor, knew what they were. I said, the gentleman had done me honour in that expression, and soe was fell to the busines. The first article, hee said, was equall, and needed no explanation. To the second hee made the same objection, as the queene had done before, and I gave the same answeres, whereof you had an account in my last letters. Hee alsoe said, that the article depended upon the treaty with the Dutch. To the third article, he desired an explanation of the words, omnibus in locis, quibus bactenus commercium exercebatur, whether that were not intended to include the plantations in America belonginge to our commonwealth. I told him, noe, and that I would not consent soe to explaine it, because traffique thither, without speciall lycence, was prohibited by our commonwealth. He said, that it would be unequall of the English to have the full traffique in the queene's dominions, and her subjects not to have the like in our commonwealth. I answered, that wee desired none in any of the queene's dominions out of Europe, and therefore it was equall not to consent to their traffique in America; and that the opinion of the councell of state in this point had ben made knowne to Monsieur Lagerfeildt, when he was in England; and shewed him the paper of the councell on that subject. Grave Ericke urged many other arguments, which should be too tedious to repeate to you; but I kept me to the paper of the councell. Hee told me, those transactions of my lord Lagerfeildt's were remitted to a conclusion upon my embassie. I aunswered, that whatsoever my instructions were, it would not become me to doe any thinge contrary to that wherein the councell of state had declared their judgment. The same answere I gave him concerning the fishing for herrings, which hee did much insist upon. And as to the point of pre–emption of the commodities of Sweden, mentioned in the councell's paper, upon that subject, which I likewise shewed him, hee said, that could not be, because these commodities were of a very great value, and did belonge to several private persons; and asked me, if I thought that England would be contented to give a pre–emption of all their cloth. I told him, that the cloth of England was likewise of very greate value; that there would hardly bee found one stock to buy it all; and that there were several staples in other countries for the vent of it. Wee had very much other discourse upon the same subject, wherein I kept me to the lords of the councell's papers, and told him, that I conceaved the best way would be first to agree upon general amity and comerce betweene the two nations; and afterwards, if Sweden thought fitt, when they sent an ambassador to England, or otherwise, to propound any thinge concerninge the fishing for herrings, or the traffique in America, or concerninge a staple at Narva, Revel, and Gottenburge, (which he likewise discoursed of at large) that my lord protector would give a faire and instant aunswere thereunto. Hee said, he would acquaint the queene with my aunswere; and soe wee proceeded to the fourth article, whereunto he made the same objections, that the queene did before; and the like discourse we had upon the fifth article. The sixth article, hee said, was the same in effect with the fourth, and might be adjoyned to it. I shewed him the difference, especially in the beginning of this article; and so we passed to the seventh, upon which we had many arguments concerninge contraband goods, wherein I held myselfe to the judgment, which the councell had given thereupon in the paper to my lord Lagerfeildt, and grave Erick past it over as dependinge upon the succes of the treaty with Holland, especially in these words, bona à suis cujusque inimicis direpta. To the eighth article, he thought there would need an explanation of the words, in quolibet suorum marium, which, I told him, was intended Europe only. To the ninth article, he said, the words armatis vel inermibus, were not necessary, because by the law of Sweden any might carry their armes with them. I told him that was not permitted in England for so many without lycence. To the tenth, eleventh, and twelsth articles, he made noe objections. To the thirteenth, hee said the proviso needed an explanation as to the point of breakinge bulke, as the queene had objected before to me, and I gave him the same answere which I gave to her majesty. The like objections and answeres were alsoe had to the fourteenth article, wherein I consented to the like amendment. He was pleased to dyne with me and much other good company, and we had some further discourse on the same subject after dynner. Hee promised to give me in writing his objections, and to lett me know the queene's pleasure upon our conference; but I intend to know it myselfe before our next meetinge. He was pleased, last of all, to tell me, that he gave it out, as the occasion of his cominge to me, to provide for satisfaction to be given to the queene's subjects for the great losses they had sustained by the seizing and deteyninge of their ships by the English. I told him, that I was neither in power, nor had ability, to cast up those accounts, or take examinations upon them; and that there is a court of justice in England, which I presumed had done, and would doe right, to any, who had cause to complaine; and that I knewe my lord protector would command, that justice should be done to all the queene's subjects; and that if any of them had received any injurie, they were to receive a just satisfaction from the parties, that doe them wronge; and that if he pleased, I would write my letters to England, and when I come thither myselfe, I would personally endeavour, that the same might be fully effected. We had much other discourse concerninge the coullering of enimies goods and like; but I seare I have bin too tedious already.
Afterwards, the Spanish resident came to visit me, whom I informed of some passages in my conference with grave Ericke in the morninge, imagininge he would tell the queene of it. In the afternoon, I visited marshall general Wrangle; he discoursed of the English fleete, in which hee knew many ships by their names, and also spake of other maritime busines, himself at present being vice–admiral of Sweden, and of great esteem in this countrey, and hath commanded at sea against the Danes, and tooke several shipps of the king of Denmarke in the last warr.
Hee told me, that Middleton was landed in Scotland with 200 officers and 6000 armes, which he carried with him from Holland; but he remembers not the name of the place in Scotland, where he landed. Monsieur Woolfeilt told me, he had received letters from one of his servants in the Low Countries, whereby he had intelligence, that the states generall sold about twenty of their ships of warr, which thinge de Witt himselfe had reported. He also told me, that he havinge spoke with many of the officers of the army here, perceived that they rather desired a continuation of the warr betweene the two commonwealths than otherwise, hopinge that would be a meanes to conjoyn them with England, which they apprehend will give them many advantages; but that the chauncellor and his sonns, and all of their partie, desire very much a peace betweene the two republiques, because, said he, they are rich, and drive a greate .... in merchandizinge; that they care not to have the souldiers imployed, because they themselves are not souldiers; that the queene hath always desired peace with her neighbours, and notwithstanding she hath much courage, yet she doth not love warr. Wensday, I waited upon her majesty, and told her what had passed betweene grave Ericke and myselfe. She said grave Ericke had informed her to the same effect. I told her, I used to speake true. As to the point of damages, shee seemed to be satisfied, although she said, shee was informed, at first cominge, that those thinges had beene left to me; to which I made her the same answere as I had done to grave Ericke, wherewith she seemed content, and resolved to sende an ambassador into England, with whome the busines of fishing for herringes, as alsoe the erection of a staple, and the commerce in America, might be treated on. She alsoe said, that she had given order to sett downe in writinge such thinges as she thought fitt to add to my articles. She asked me which way I intended to goe home. I told her I was in suspence as to my journey by land, and that I thought to goe from Stockholme to Lubeck would be most convenient; She told me, she believed it would be the best way, and that she had given order for one of her ships to be made ready to transport me; for which I gave her thanks.
I should take it for a great favour from you, if when you find an oppertunity, you would be pleased to speake a good word to his highnes for my sonne James his good. You will be able to make your owne judgment uppon this tedious narrative; for which I intreat your pardon, and returne my most hearty thankes for the favour and kindnes of your most wellcome letters, and your friendly care of me, whereof I entreat the continuance. Prince Adolph was even now with me, and is very civill to me, and speakes much of his brother's beinge acquainted with me. I hope shortly to receive my lorde's order, to give me leave to returne; and though but with agreement of the general amity and commerce, in case the peace be made, and the Dane included, in my poore judgement, it will be enough; and although the warre continue, I know no great advantage from hence, though no more should be agreed. I have sent you a Lattin copy of all those articles, which I have yett delivered in to the queene, that the conferences upon them may be the better understood. I never spake such a worde to the queene, as the kinge of Denmarke hearde; and Mons. Bevengen is sufficiently mistaken. His letters, which you send me, are the same, which the queene and Don Piemontel have weekly; but they know not of mine.
Mr. Alexander Griffith to the protector.
May it please your Highnesse,
I Made bould, being obliged both in duty and conscience, upon the hearing of many seditious expressions delivered by Mr. Vavasor Powell, Mr. Feake, and others, at Christ–church, and Blackfriers, against your highnes protection and goverment, to take noates thereof, which were presented to your highnes: and have not been wanting, after Mr. Powel's return into Wales, to deliver to my lord Henry your son, what informations I received concerninge his, and others his frinds actions, in those parts. But his lordship being now absent, and having received theis inclosed letters (sent to me and my frinds here) concerninge a remonstrance, and other passages, which he and his complices do still vent and transact in Wales; I accounted it the continuance of my duty to present the originals to your highnes consideration, least they should import any thing worthy to be considered as matters of concernement, and leave them to your highnes judgment, whom I beseech God to instruct and direct as his angel, that my lord may discern good and bad. I find by the inclosed letters of Mr. V. Powel, and M. Jenk. Jones, under their owne hands, that they have listed troopes, which they keep on foote to the terror of the inhabitants, though (as I am informed) they are not of the established army, raysed by commaund from your highnes. With my hartie prayers to God for your highnes happie peace, protection, and goverment, I humblie commend you to the throan of his grace, and rest, Sir,
Paper of the commissioners of the admiralty.
The commissioners for the admiralty and navy do humbly certify, that in the year 1652 the Antelope frigat, being appointed to convey home such English ships as were then laden in the king of Denmark's ports, she was by reason of the detention, which the said king made of the said shipping, constrained to attend on that coast many months, until the approach of winter; and upon her return was shipwrecked, to the damage of this commonwealth, the sum of seven thousand pounds.
A letter of intelligence from Paris.
The English post of this day is not yet arrived, that I know of, neither have we much newes; only what I writ to you in my former to be true. Cardinal de Retz is in still, and we are without an archbishop. His majesty offers daily an archbishop, but we rather have him than any other; though the king and cardinal be much against it.
The sacrament was exposed yesterday, and so will be in the most part of our churches, where there shall be continually prayers for the liberty of the said cardinal; which if it does not serve, it is thought the sacrament shall be carried in procession by all the churchmen in Paris through the streets, and afterwards to the king in the Louvre; where they intend to desire his majesty, in honour of his Saviour, to consider the liberty of their archbishop and prelate; and if that does not serve, it is believed all the churches in town may be locked up, till they shall obtain the liberty of their chief head the archbishop. It is to be feared, it may be a troublesome matter before it be ended. Last tuesday was the day ordered yearly for a general procession in this city, for giving thanks to God for the reduction of Paris by Henry the fourth, king that was then of France; which day all the parliament went in a body to Notre–dame, accompanied with the governor of Paris, provost de marchands, with many others of the town–house, where, when they entered, he spoke to those of the chapter, and told them it was time to go, and begin the procession. He of them that had orders to answer, said, they were to be excused; for they could do nothing without their chief head and prelate, cardinal de Retz; and for another reason, that it was raining. For the first reason, the governor said, they could not excuse themselves, because the cardinal was not yet at liberty. As for the second, that it was nothing; yet they said they would do nothing without the archbishop, or orders written under his own hands; and then they would obey. Yet they made only their procession within the church, the said governor, provost de marchands, and many others of the town–house, being with them. After they ended, the procession came to the convent of the Augustines, where a high mass was said by the superior of the convent. So according to custom, those of Notre–dame ought to sing the high mass, and in our lady's church; but they would not, because they had not their archbishop.
The same day, two letters de cachet were sent to M. Chevallier the chanoine, that has the procuration to succeed cardinal de Retz, in his absence, and to four or five more, in the king's behalf, to retire out of Paris; but they have not yet obeyed. Next monday, the archbishop, that was of Paris, shall be buried. In the mean time, there is daily prayers for him in all the churches in this city, and continual masses saying for him in his own house, in his chapel richly accommodated. All the doctors of Sorbonne, with those of Notre–dame, assembled in the officialty last wednesday; which the queen hearing of, sent to them, desiring them to write to the king; and that she would speak herself for the liberty of their archbishop the cardinal de Retz; yet in case his majesty had consented to it, she knew well what prejudice should follow to his majesty and state. Yet all is but words; for she did never think to speak in his behalf.
The second day after, count de Noailles, and the first president, were with the cardinal de Retz, at Bois de Vincennes, in the king's behalf, desiring him to give his demission of the archbishoprick of Paris; which he refused, as he did several times before.
The king says, the process of the said cardinal for his place is not in form; but he is deceived, as he was well answered by the chapter, and had more, if he had given audience to their dean that spoke. The duke of Orleans has formed an opposition against the confiscation of prince Condé's goods, by reason of a contract of marriage between duke d'Enguien, and his daughter mademoiselle de Valois, saying, that the said prince has promised half of all his goods to his son, the aforesaid duke; and the contract being signed and sealed by his majesty's own hands, that the goods ought to be preserved for the said duke and princess. I know not yet what may be the end of it.
A gentleman sent by madame the duchess of Lorrain to her husband, to comfort him in his prison, went no further than Cambray; the governor of that place having stayed him there, because he had no pass from the archduke. The governor took away all his letters from him, and returned him homewards. Last thursday, the first president went to Notre–dame, and told the chapter, that his majesty was disposing of cardinal de Retz's liberty, and that they ought not to trouble themselves any more; but they do not believe. Yesterday morning at eight of the clock, the king went to the palace to end the process of prince Condé and after the informations of the said process were read in full parliament with many witnesses; the king's men first gave their conclusions, according to which an arrest was pronounced, by which prince Condé is condemned to death, where–ever they can find or catch him; as also all his adherents; but to what kind of death, is not yet specified. All their goods are to be confiscated.
Whilst the members of parliament were giving their opinion, M. marshal de Grandmont, in his turn, craved his majesty to pardon him, to give his own opinion in the matter, saying, he had the honour to be cousin to the prince, which his majesty granted by his own mouth. M. de l'Hospital seconded, desiring the like; so did duke de Candale, who all fell to the first opinion and conclusion; notwithstanding the chancellor said it was not necessary for dukes or marshals of France to be troubled with the like, being enough for the king to see the acts and witnesses thereof in that nature, in his own presence. This morning they are all in parliament, the king, his counsellors, and members of parliament, all in red coats, to pronounce the above–mentioned arrest, &c.
A letter of intelligence.
Besides what you have in the letter of occurrents, you have that of secrecy. Some undertake very privately to make some proposals for the prince of Condé and more may be in it, than many think; for cardinal Mazarin would be reconciled willingly. Of this, time will let you know more. The said cardinal is troubled with the gout now lately, which makes him sometime inaccessible. He expects to hear the reception of M. Bordeaux for all delays, and M. de Baas promiseth much, and boasteth of his frequent conferences with your lord protector. You know best; but his letters are high here of what he can do. The marriage desired by Portugal's daughter with this king, is not in fieri; but that with the infanta of Spain, though it involves many difficulties, will be attempted, and if it be possible, wrought out. Of this you had much from me before. The duke of York is indisposed, and his going into Scotland in tottering con dition, like many more of their designs. R. Carolus expects only moneys from this court, and had he received it, he would be from hence at least three months past. But cardinal Mazarin will not give him moneys, till he knows the success of the peace of England with Holland, of France with England, and Swedeland with England, and will interea gain as much time as he can, and amuse all; and likewise be prepared for a peace with Spain. I gave you enough of this before, and I speak not without book. Count Harcourt is in a sad condition; for he lost in Alsace the ensuing garisons; viz. Ensiskeim, Berkem, Guemer, Alkris, and St. Creux. The king of Franc's army is now about Tanes, and took the town. The castle hath nine days time, and if not relieved before by the count of Harcourt, it must yield. Some of these garisons were not considerable. The marquis Castlenouveau is shot at the taking of Tanes, and came in a litter to Nancy in Lorrain. He commanded that army.
A letter of intelligence.
I am informed, that here are six hundred thousand livres tournois ready to pay M. de Cezi's Debt, according to a pretended treaty Laurence Green made a while before his death. But what shew soever they make of that sum, I am surely informed, they intend to perform nothing, until their embassador M. de Neusville hath made the publick treaty; the which (against all order) they intend to conclude, before they regulate the late grievances; which is a proceeding of their ordinary crastiness.
I am also informed, that one named d'Estivall (who hath a flash in his cheek, and wears a plaister upon it) with three others, have given themselves rendezvous at Ostend, to go and buy ships in England for Charles Stuart, or his friends.
A letter of intelligence.
Wee hope by this, being our ambassadors have bin so well received with you, that all is done to the great securitie and settling of both nations. The treatie at Luycky is ended in a peace, all armies being thereby obliged to forbear any further hostilitie or quartering in that countrey. The French auxiliaries under Fabert, governor of Sedan, might probabely have bin circumvented in their returne, had the Spanish troopes pursued their designe of disturbing their retreat. They were advanced as far as the Maese double the number of the enemie, and had passed most of their horse under the colour and name of Condé's; but were countermanded by Fuenseldagne, who more tender of his master's honour then profitt, chose rather a pursuance of the treatie, then his present advantage. If it were not this candidnesse that moderated him, it was doubtles the feare of calling the whole strenghth of France into thise neighbouring royall provinces, which must necessarily have followed, if Fabert's men had not found the gap open.
All the princes of the house of Lorraine take it high, that the cheife of their house, being a soveraine prince, should be subject to a Spanish arrest; though indeed it was time to secure him, if it be true, that he had agreed with France, as I formerly told you. Hee is likewise accused of being of the count of Bassinie's conspiracie, and that he was to seise upon, and deliver up the prince of Condé's person into the French hands.
The Spanish armie is passed at Namur; but the French are out of reach by this time, as far as Theonville, and consequently out of danger. What the Spanish designe is, the next may tell you. This is all at present, save my being
A letter of intelligence.
Here is no motion of a general peace at present, but granted you will conclude a peace with Holland, because those provinces cannot longer resist the great power of England, as now is confessed by most here.
You had before, that the prince of Condé departed from hence with all his French train, towards the country of Liege, to take away from thence all his troops, according to the treaty made between our ministers lately (as you have heard) and the elector of Cologne; in which treaty and agreement, our secretary of state Navarro promised to give better quarters to the said prince's troops in Lorrain. In the same agreement also the elector of Cologne was obliged at the same time to retire, and actually send out of all his countries all the French troops, as is expressed in the articles of the said treaty, brought hither by the said secretary, and count de Staremberg, who was employed in that treaty by orders from the emperor, accompanied by count de Furstenberg, major domo to the said elector, which deputies were hastened by count Fuenseldagna to the country of Liege, to see the French march from thence.
The duke of Arescot and many other chief officers of this army are gone the same way too. The French are already out of the country of Liege, and gone into that of Meuse, where they rob, pillage, and exercise all manner of spoils in all places they come to. But Don Francisco Pardo, governor of Luxemburgh, having gathered all his troops, went to attempt them on the one side, and prince Condé on the other, towards the castle of Navaigne, upon the Meuse. Some say the French were beaten, others equally on both sides.
The abbot Sohoc, brother to viscount de Liene, being suspected of count de Bassignie's plot, was sent for to this court, where now he is commanded not to depart this town without the permission of the archduke, who privately searcheth after all his actions. He is in a manner as if he were in prison. Prince Condé is returned hither from the country of Liege, and his forces there now quartered by the archduke. The conflict between the French and ours was not considerable; the French were gone before ours were all met. No more, &c. from, Sir,
Last harvest, divers arms were sent from hence for Lubeck, by a gentleman of Prussia, and, some say, for the service of Charles Stuart, but cannot affirm the certainty. In my last, I wrote you of the conjunction the Muscovites had made with the Cossacks, which, some say, is not yet completed. Indeed all reports out of Poland are so various, that little can be credited. The difference between this king and crown about the balances of Poland and Littau, is not yet ended. It is reported, that the king will repose himself after Easter here in Prussia.