A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 2, 1654. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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June (2 of 6)
An extract of a letter from a counsellor of the elector of Brandenburg, residing at Berlin; dated 16/6 of June, 1654. to Mr. Hartlib.
I Never heard before, that the queen of Sweden caused her library to be transported into the Low Countries; only I am told, that she is grown weary of all kind of studies, and that she cares no more for any bookish matters.
The great pensions, which heretofore she hath promised to very many, are now like to cease; for by reason of her resignation she will be reduced and brought into a narrow compass from her large extravagancies, which no doubt will be a very strange and uncouth entertainment to her apprehensions.
A memorandum, concerning searching of the Dutch ships by the English.
Memorandum or declaration, to signify unto your noble great lordships, how that upon the 16th of June, 1654. coming from St. Malo, near the Downs, came up to us an English frigat, with 44 guns, whereof was captain Abraham Hanckers, of London, who sent his boat on board of me, to ask me from whence I came; and I told him, that I came from St. Malo. Then they rowed aboard of their frigat again, and went aboard of the merchant men, and took all the passengers on board him, that were in those ships. I, perceiving that, manned out my shallop; and as soon as he saw that, he put the passengers into his boat again, and brought them on board, without doing them any harm, only opening the hatches of the galliot ship, and look'd into her hold. This we under-written declare to be true; and I, as captain, am desired to know of your noble great lordships, whether I shall suffer the same to be done for the future. I shall expect your lordships advice and order hereupon, how that I shall govern myself for the time to come.
Here we expect an embassador from the state of Genoa, desiring licence to raise forces in these parts, to defend themselves against the Spaniards; and to that purpose they sent moneys hither by several ways: they shall not be refused, it being as well to our profit as theirs.
A letter of intelligence from Paris.
My last of the 13/3. of this month will have assured you of the finishing of the ceremonies of the sacre of the king. The duke of Anjou, upon this occasion, represented the duke of Burgundy; the duke of Vendosme, him of Normandy; the duke of Elbœuf, him of Aquitaine; the duke of Candale, the earl of Tholouse; the duke of Roan, him of Champagne; the duke of Bournonville, him of Flanders. These were the six lay-peers of France, to whom the church-men would not give the precedency; those were, the bishop of Soissons, (who officiated for the archbishop of Rheims, as the chiefest suffragan) and the bishops of Beauvais, of Noyon, and Chalons, with the archbishop of Bourges and of Roan, representing the bishops and duke of Laon. The lord chancellor officiated in his place; the cardinal Grimaldy, in that of great aumonier; the duke of Joyeuse, in his of lord high chamberlain; the mareschal of Villeroy, in his of chief master of the hostel of France; and the marquis of Vivonne, in that of gentleman of the chamber. One of the sons of prince Thomas carried the tail of the king's cloak; the earls of Charost and Noailles, captains of the guard, went on each side of the king; the mareschal de l'Hospital carried the crown; the mareshal of Plessis Praslin, the sceptre; the mareshal of Aumont, the hand of justice; and the lords of Sonuré, d'Orval, and St. Symon, carried the offering and the money, the bread of gold and silver, with the wine.
The king, being in his throne, received homage from all the dukes and peers aforesaid, the church-men crying three times, Vivat in æternum! and the lay-men cry'd, God grant the king to live for ever !
And to set out the ceremony with the more charges and splendor, there were several pieces of silver dispersed, with the king's picture upon them, as many as came to the value of 300 l. and several tables spread in the streets, adorn'd with meats and wine, for all goers and comers. But the magnificence of this ceremony would have been far greater, if they had observed the old custom.
The day before my last letter, the lord Pimentelli arrived here from Sweden, returning into Spain. He alighted at the cardinal's own house, where he was most nobly treated the next day; and the day after, he went to Fontainebleau, to pursue his journey.
General Fleetwood to secretary Thurloe.
I MUST needes tell you, I lye under a difficulty of many sorts more than formerly I have done; and yet finde how much I am misrepresented. But in that I am not sollicitous, knowing my own innocency and integrity will beare me a witness against all suggestions. I shall not at present trouble you, then to let you know, the comissioners are in a straite what to doe in setting out lands to captain Blackwell and colonel Hewson, for the one's assigned bill of adventurers, and the other, his arreares; in regard the places chosen by both are in places of so great advantage to themselves, being so neare this place; and the lands for others so very doubtfull, how farre they will satisfye both the souldiers and adventurers; and therfor have had consideratione, wether they shall proceade according to the rates for the adventurers, as the act setts down; or elce to goe according to the resolves of the generall counsell, at the highest rates. I wish, I knew how to steare 'twixt the difficulty, and what was intended in England by my lord protector in such cases. Ther can be nothing sayde but the merritts of the person, the difference from others, in point of satisfaction, being extreme great. It had bine much more desierable a good reward had bine given to both of them for their good services; but differences of this kinde makes many complayn. I love them both so well, that I can serve them in any thing, which may be of advantage to them, and not disservice to the publicke. I wish the party for Scotland may be looked after, and not left in distresse for want of provisions; which, if some be not authorized to look after to speed them, will be of great prejudice to that party. I have severall things sometimes to trouble my lord with of publick concernment; but that I feare my letters may be exposed to others view, which in this jealous time I am more curious in. I wish I knew what was intended about my coming for England, my deare wife's condicion being such, as will require a speedy resolution from my lord protector unto
June 7. 1654.
Anth. S. to secretary Thurloe.
Colonell William Hyllyard, whoe is latelye come from the Barbadoes, is indebted to colonel William Ashburneham the summe of 1900 l. which is to bee paid after the expiration of four yeares, which ended the fifth or sixth of June instant. If you finde, that the money is sequestrable, you may doe well to gett an order of the council to injoyn him to pay the money into some treasury; if not, yet in discharge of my conscience and judgment, I could doe no lesse then give you this notice, being a well-wisher to his highness, and one that have beene ever
7th June, 1654.
A letter of intelligence.
Yours I received by the two last posts, not being able to answer these last three ordinaries, by reason of my indisposition after my journey from Ratisbon. I am yet in my bed, and pray to be excused, till I shall recover this malady.
R. C. is expected at the Spa suddenly, and from thence into Germany, where he is to receive the auxiliary moneys, arms, and ammunition, promised by the empire, as you had formerly; which is all I have now to say of him, but great hopes divisions shall arise in the United Provinces for his advantage. And the news the cavaliers in Scotland write, makes a great noise among them; but when the substance of your letters shall be published, the case will be altered, at least by all indifferent persons.
A letter of intelligence.
The constant letters, that come from divers hands in London, touching the discovered plot against the protector, begets some belief now of the truth of it; for truly at first few or none would believe there was any thing of it real; but the conspirators, I hope, by the hand of justice, will let the world see there was a plot, and a murderous cruel one. Another difficulty is made by many here, that the protector will not call a parliament, though he promises it to amuse the world, which I believe will prove as false as the rest of their surmises, and the small shame left in those calumniators leave them to some other wickedness. The differences between the United Provinces increase, as letters and travellers daily bring hither, which the Dutch embassadors in England cannot be ignorant of, and consequently others. Our chief news here at present is, the confirmation of the siege of Stenay, and the prince of Condé with all preparations gone to relieve it; as also all our army now goes into the field, to which purpose four hundred waggons are gone from this city with all sorts of provision; and the archduke himself goes from hence to take the field upon thursday next, and not to return this season.
Orders came from the king of Spain some eight days since, to remove from the castle of Antwerp and the Low-countries duke Charles of Lorrain, and to convey him to Spain with due security and respect. In obedience whereunto, the said duke is sent to Dunkirk, where now he is, expecting the first fair wind for Spain. Five vessels of war are there, to receive and convoy him. When he comes to Spain, it shall appear to him, what he is committed for. His brother duke Francis desired to see him at his being in Antwerp, but it was not permitted by the guards, who had orders to the contrary.
Last week Don Hierosme d'Arragon, brother to duke de Terra-Nova, (now embassador for Spain at Rome) parted hence to take shipping at Dunkirk, to fail into Spain; as also count de Gand, brother to prince Heim, who brings a regiment newly raised in Flanders with him to Spain. All these accompany duke Charles, and Terra-Nova his brother goes upon some secret employment of importance from the archduke, as time will let you see.
An intercepted letter of Gilbert Mowat, to Mons. Le Clerke, at the Pearl in James-street.
Sir, and Dear Friend,
I wish you had not vented all your kindness in your first letter, but that you had kept some of those expressions for a second or third letter, that so we might have known, whether you were dead or living. I never received but one letter from you since your going from hence; and Mr. Durham too, although we have never passed a week without writing to you. Mr. Durham desired me to shew you he wondered much at it. Ye may guess what I think also; but one letter I resolve to add yet, worse than Pollard and Montgomery's flying, if you do not shortly remember us. We have good news here from Scotland by some Scots ship lately come from thence; wherein were passengers, who affirm, that they were in Edinburgh, when Monk came in twice wounded in the body, and struck through the buttocks with a tuck; for as they report, he had taken the field twice with 3000 horse and dragoons, having sent Argyle away, to gather what forces he could. The marquis of Montrosse, the earls of Atholl and Buchane, and viscount of Dicop, charged him at Methuen, routed him wholly, and chased him to Sterling-bridge, from whence they returned to hunt Argyle; whose fortune if it were to fall into Montrosse's hands, were it not strange? The uproar was so great in Edinburgh, that eighty royalists broke prison, and escaped all, except two; and one of the merchants, that is now here, that was there of intention to carry away some skins, which he had bought before-hand, was forced to leave all, and make haste over the water. Because it seemeth that you are become an independent proselyte, and would keep good news from us, I have resolved to beat this in your ears. Since we have honest men eye-witnesses, I know not what to believe, if this be false. From hence the states of Holland have sent over the conclusion taken by them against the prince of Orange, to be presented to Cromwel. The general states have, on the contrary, commanded the embassadors not to present it to him. The princess of Tarante hath acknowledged her fault to the princess Louisa, and now is every day with the queen.
A letter from secretary Oste, in Sweden.
The queen hath at last so far executed her intention, that the crown was upon tuesday last transferred upon his royal highness, the states being called upon saturday and monday last by sound of trumpet to this action, who met in the hall at the time appointed. The queen, in the morning at nine o'clock, with the nobility and her counsellors, having her crown upon her head, and the sceptre in the right hand, and the rixapple in the left, did cause to be read a paper, containing the resignation of her crown, and the renouncing of all pretences to the same; which being delivered by the lord Rosenlaer, who read the same to his royal highness, there was afterwards read by the said lord another in the same form, wherein his said highness doth oblige himself not only to protect the queen, but also to let her enjoy the possession of Noortcoping, Geland, Gotland, Oesel, Pomeren, and two offices in Mecklenburg, during life. This obligation being delivered to the queen by his highness himself, the queen delivered up her crown and sceptre: which being done, the states thanked her for her faithfulness and affection during her government. She gave them thanks for their consent; and pointing at her successor, she recommended him to them. And after her majesty had recommended herself to his royal highness, they took their leaves of her, and conducted her to her chamber.
Afterwards, in the afternoon, his royal highness rid to church, attended by most of the lords, the citizens being all in arms; where he heard the bishop of Stregnitz make a sermon; which being ended, his royal highness took an oath upon his knees, which was read unto him by the lord chancellor; and that being done, he was anointed by the archbishop of Upsal, who delivered up unto him the crown, sceptre, the rix-apple, sword, and key.
A letter of intelligence from Monsieur Riviere.
Haieving by one of your frendes learned your adrese, I give you notis of th is what folowes, which is a certaine treuth: there caime into Paris from London one Thomas Henshaw and John Wiseman, about the begining of Martch laste; and after haiveing informed the courte, and betrayed the secretes, which one Monsieur Roqueby, an English gentelman, who is prisoner of warre in the Bastile of Paris, and who had employed the said Henshaw for the prince of Condey's service; and the said Monsieur Roqueby is now since shute up close prisoner, though accused of nothing, but that he is to good an Englishman, and to good a servant unto the prince of Condey's. But this designe of Henshawe's was only to put him into credit as well at the Franch as English court; for he the said Thomas Henshaw, John Wiseman, and one Wilkenet a Duchman, did propose to the king of Scotes to murder the protector Crumwel; and did asure the saide king, that there was several men of quality in England, that they weare imployed by, and who would act their partes of this tragedy. Those who assisted them heare for to maike their propositions, was one Walsingham, Monsieur Digby, secretaire, one Shokew, prince Robert's, surgeon, and Monsieur Montigu's chapline, a popish priest. Thomas Henshaw, and John Wiseman, when they had their answers, retourned into England to waite their time to maike this assassinate uppon the person of protector Cromwel. Wilkenet, the Dutchman, who bostes to have helped to kill colonel Vainsberg at Doncaster, stayes heare with the others, in hopes to heare newes of the murder, and who promises themselves greate recompenses, if the assassinatures succede. I give notice divers wayes of this businesse; and though I be noe Englishman, the hopes, which I haive to retourne into England, maikes me to be concerned in Englande's good. Thomas Henshaw was liftenant to Monsieur Roqueby's troope of horse in the prince of Condye's service, and sent away the troopers to the contrary party, and runne away himself after into England with his brother-in-law John Wiseman, who dweles at maister Wisemane's house in the litel Sanctuary, over-against the abbey in Westminster. Maister Wiseman did mary Henshawe's mother, and is father to John Wiseman. I desire you to excuse me, that I give you this troble, being not knowne unto you. I am
Your most humble and affectionet servant,
The Swedish resident to secretary Thurloe.
Upon the delivery of the congratulatory letter, her majesty of Sweden, my sovereign queen and mistress, hath sent a while since to his highness my lord protector, some difficulties having been made, and some exceptions taken, that withal the copy of the said letter was not delivered, I could do no less in duty than to acquaint her majesty with the same; who thereupon did very lately write a letter to me, the substance whereof is, that though it be not the custom of Swedeland to send copies of the congratulatory letters, when the originals are in possession; yet her majesty, being willing to give all content, was pleased to send me a copy of the said letter, the which is here inclosed; her majesty saying farther, that in case any exception be taken at the titles in the superscription of the said letter, she assureth, that before the sending of the said letter, her majesty desired by one of her secretaries she then sent to his excellency my lord embassador Whitelocke, to know what titles she should use upon her said letter, who returned her the same that were upon the letter, in writing; which premises I thought fit to impart to your honour, because no just exception might be taken either by the former want of the said copy, or by any thing in the title, which hath not been done on any purpose; and so I remain,
most humble servant,
A letter to secretary Thurloe, from the person who translated his letters of intelligence.
You shoulde have had notice from me of marquisse de Cognac his lodginges as desired, but that I understood he was with his highnes upon tuesday: his brother (who is now of the kinge's partye, revolted from Condé) is the man, that is his author, you may be assured, and Mons. de Bax his, as you had formerlie.
For the other matter you gave in chardg, your servant is very busie about it; but
fyndes much difficultie in it, as he tells me, and will shortlie to yourselfe give account, &c. Sir,
Your humble servant,
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
The lord Stockar is in the end departed. He faith, he was desired by the one and the other, to suffer himself to be employed, to the end to dispose and induce the lord protector to release and deliver up the act of seclusion, and by this means to re-establish the prince of Orange and his posterity in the same quality as his predecessors; but he saith, that he excused it, as having no order for it; and in case he should not have effected it, that would have been a shame to his principals. It may be, that he was desired by the one or the other particular; but not by the states general, nor by those of Holland. Likewise the common opinion is, that those of Holland do not desire, that the protector should release or deliver it up; at least not the fifteen members, who do set themselves more and more against the pr. of Orange party; for men see from time to time, that Orange party do grow wilful; yea, that they do band more and more for pr. of Orange, and that must without doubt make Hollanders likewise wilful and stubborn. In Zealand the town of Tolen is now likewise for Holland; so that Zealand is divided three against three; and besides that, Flushing and Veer do stand in awe of England, and fear the war. Those of Holland have writ to the other provinces, but of several contents; to those of Friesland, a little seriously, as being a little more sharp; to those of Utrecht, a little more gently, as not being far remoted from the opinion of Holland; to the rest, moderately; the whole tending to excuse that which Holland hath done for the seclusion, and to justify their actions, and to exhort the said provinces to peace, tranquillity, and moderation. And seeing that some provinces do very much endeavour the recalling of the embassadors, they have declared their reasons, why it is not necessary nor convenient, that the embassadors should be recalled; and in the mean time the people (the most part those that live by the sea, fishing, navigation, and commerce) is pleased with the sweetness of gain and profit. In Guelderland, there is domestic division enough about other differences, and the most part of the cities are Hollanders. At Groningen there is likewise division; and that party, which side with count William, is the weakest. One Heinsius, formerly syndic, degraded and banished by them that side with the earl, is come back again to Groningen. It is time that count William went thither to moderate the differences; but he hath not been able to do any thing; and he held himself impartial, and let them alone, returning back hither. Their difference is domestic, and doth not concern the seclusion; but having business amongst themselves, they care the less for the seclusion. In Overyssel likewise there are domestic differences; and Deventer, the first city, is altogether for Holland. Now they begin to believe the loss of the Recif. Those of Zealand will set out as many more private men of war for the coasts of Brazil; for men do judge, that the Portuguese will not always be able to go with fleets. There were at least twenty or thirty commissions granted to private men of war, the same day that the sad news came of the loss of the Recif; so that they make account here to do all the mischief they can to the Portuguese with their free-booters. But if the king of Portugal durst, he would soon cause this free-booting to cease; for I think there are a hundred great ships laden here, that are bound for Lisbon: by making seizure of them, he would soon repair the loss of this free-booting design; but he hath enemies enough, and by that means he would have his river of Lisbon blocked up. Here is news come of prince Maurice, who was thought and believed to be drowned and perished, that he is a slave at Algier; for being constrained (at that time that he parted from prince Rupert) to run as far as Hispaniola in the West-Indies, he was coming back from thence towards Spain in a bark laden with a great quantity of silver, and was taken by a pirate of Algiers. The queen his mother hath spoken to the embassador of France, to the end he may write in his behalf to the great Turk; for it is presupposed, that this state dare not speak for him, for fear of offending the protector. Count William is from day to day expected here; he hath done all that he was able to appease the differences between the factions, that are amongst the members of the Ommelanders; but it is very much doubted, whether he hath been able to effect it; for those who do believe themselves the strongest will not hear of any submission; and if a mediator hath no strength, he can do nothing; and those of Holland do likewise foment the one or other party. At Nimeguen, the assembly of the states doth also continue full of domestic differences; and although the Orange party do endeavour, and cause to be endeavoured, all that they can, that the provincial advice of Guelderland be conformable to the advice of Friesland, and of Groningen (to revoke and disown the embassadors, and to send another and new embassy into England); nevertheless the members of the province of Guelder are so divided, that they cannot draw up a provincial advice, as it ought. In Overyssel there were will be two assemblies of the states, one at Deventer, (for it is their turn to assemble in that city) and one at Zwol; so that it will be very difficult for them there to draw up a provincial advice. The commissioner of Groningen and Ommeland to the states general, having considered the proposition of those of Holland, that embassadors might be embassadors of the generality, and yet do also a business of and for a province in particular, hath contradicted that by a writing of the sixteenth of June. At Groningen, or in the Ommelands, the domestic differences were yet undecided the 3/13. instant. The one party, the weakest, would very willingly refer the difference to count William; but the others say, that in a business so notoriously just and clear, all submission would be useless; that they will trust the right and equity. The messengers sent from hence the sixth of this month to the embassadors in England, are come back hither; the states general had writ by one of them to the embassadors, to send them a copy of the act of seclusion; those of Holland had writ by the other, to interchange the act with the protector, in case he would not be diverted from it: the one and the other is done; for they have sent the copy desired, and they have made an interchange of the original act with the lord protector. All this is done pro captu lectoris. Orange party continue, and will continue, to oppose it, chiefly those of Friesland; and it seemeth, that ante omnia they will endeavour for the revoking of the embassadors for another embassy into England, (to the end they may not offend likewise the lord protector) and afterwards to make choice or denomination of pr. Orange for the charge of captain general, although question is, if Orange party can gain the plurality of the provinces; for having once the plurality, they will do the one as well as the other; and there is great likelihood, that they will have the said plurality; for Friesland and Groningen do that, which grave William do desire, at least in this point. Zealand will be afraid of protector; otherwise the people are there almost masters. In the other provinces also, as well as in Friesland, there is also a party for states of Holland; but the plurality is for Orange party; and in states of Holland alone, the general college have the plurality. The best for states of Holland is, that among Orange party there are a great many, that are fearful, and some are very hot, and others moderate and mild. My opinion is, that it would be good for Holland, if peace were between Spain and France; for Spain would have a little more authority, and Orange party would be afraid as well of protector as Spain, and would cause Hollanders to subsist the better. In the mean time I see, that Hollanders in Friesland have courage enough. At Haerlem is dead the lord Renyl, pensionary of that city, who although one of the six Lovestein lords, yet since he hath always shewn himself very much devoted to the house of Orange, and was one of the great opposers of this act of seclusion, we shall see now, whether Haerlem will be a little more. Count William is come back. I do not hear of any general agreement. The strongest party doth maintain themselves. In the mean time, at the new assembly, every one will endeavour to be master. On the behalf of the nobi lity of Holland, the place in the states general is become vacant, since that the lord of Wimmenum is chosen into the council in the place of the lord Mathenes: now in the place of the lord of Wimmenum is named the lord of Merode, brother-in-law of the lord Opdam, consequently a great Hollander, at least a man that may be trusted. In short, Holland do fortify themselves as much as they can on all sides, and so they had need; for since the arrival of the copy of the act of seclusion Orange party will not be at rest, but continually stirring. The city of Middleburgh doth begin to be unruly a little, and the people are there master. I am
Your humble servant.
A letter of intelligence.
Since my last to you, by the immediate ordinary before this, the difference betwixt the provinces groweth for the recalling of those embassadors of those provinces, who are in London; and the provinces of Friesland and Groningen do press without intermission for the same; and notwithstanding the province of Holland upon friday last exhibited a paper, being the twelfth instant, relating and containing many reasons of importance for the continuation and present being of the said embassadors now in England, the peace not fully completed, &c. to this paper of the province of Holland answer hath been given by the other provinces the day following, being the seventeenth instant, in a paper, declaring that those embassadors in England be recalled, and other confiding persons be sent in their places, to perfect what is to be done further for the accomplishment of the peace with England. And now I understand the tempest is higher, because the embassadors in England, in obedience to the generality, have with their letters sent all that which they treated apart with England, the copies whereof I could now send to you, but that I know you have them already there. The embassadors last letters are of the twelfth of June, with the copies of all the secret actings apart with England.
The embassador Jongestal writ to the states general his excuse, that he knew nothing of
the actings all apart; but that he saw sometimes Beverning and Nieuport go alone to the
protector or commissioners, and kept all secret from him. The party of the prince of
Orange is now better satisfied than before; and those of Zealand have declared, that they
will not only disapprove of the said secret act of the province of Holland, but all that
which the said embassadors have treated upon; but this is furious: however, in testimony
of their dislike, they have recalled the vote, which they gave on the behalf of Beverning
for the office of treasurer-general, which he was chosen for, as I gave you long since.
The opinion of most men is, that no less shall be done in the rest of the provinces, and
opposition found. Count William of Nassau, the head of this party, is expected here,
to revive and give strength with his presence and authority to this business; and many
believe, that those who do favour and affect the house of Orange, will attempt something
of violence to the purpose against those of Holland. You shall have what farther shall
be of it duly from week to week, as well as I can. Some talk, as if a great assembly of
all the states should be called upon, to end this difference: it may well be so, before it
be ended. From Stockholm, Mons. Beuningen, deputy to these states in that kingdom;
writes to the states general in a letter of his of the thirtieth of May last, that which
causes great admiration here, which is thus: That the queen of Sweden sent from Upsal to
Stockholm her master of ceremonies with a paper sealed and signed by her own hand,
commanding him to open the same in the presence of the minister of Portugal. And the
substance thereof was, that her said majesty doth not acknowledge any other king of Portugal, but his majesty king Philip of Spain; and that she did not repute his master but
as duke of Braganza, an unjust usurper of that crown; and that the prince her successor
was of the same resolution and mind; and therefore he should retire and recede from her
dominions; and that to that purpose she would give orders for a pass to be drawn for
him, till he had passed her dominions. Some mystery is conceived to be in this matter;
as also in that resignation of the crown. Many speak diversly of it; but no certainty, that
I can yet learn; but it may be, I may come into it, before it be long, because I search for it
always, &c. Sir,
Mr. John Edwards to secretary Thurloe.
In pursuance of his highnes commission and instructions, wee hastened what we could to this place, where arriving, wee found that the king with the most of his chiefe ministers were absent; soe that wee applyed ourselves to such as had order from the reicks-hoff-master or lord high steward, about our business, to whom wee delivered our demand. For a perticuler account of what hath followed thereupon, I humbly refer your honor to our joynt letters; though I must needes add, that wee finde both ships and that small quantity of goods remaineing, much deteriorated by lieing, of which we shall send your honour perticular certificates, soe soon as they can be finished. These are chiefely to acquainte the receipt of your honor's favourable lines of the 24th ult. which come to hand five dayes after our arival, giveing your honor most humble thanks for the sudden dispatch of the messenger. Wee shall omitte noe care and dilligence in the quicke dispatch of our busines, which I hope will not deteine us long; and wee shall hasten the rather, because the sicknes is much in this place. In the meane time, I shall use my utmost endeavours of rendering myselfe any way serviceable to your honor; though for what your honour was pleased to mention concerning the Eagle, I cannot learne, that any thing is in agitation here tending that way. 'Tis thought that party will embroyle himself againe in warres with the Sweds by takeing the Bremers parte against them; and for these people, they thinke themselves very secure; soe that they have desisted theire naval preparations, and discharged the mariners, partely by reason of sicknes, but chiefely upon some ground of confidence received from Stockholm, that the Swedes would not infest them this yeare. I shall use my utmost endeavours to answer your honor's expectation in all perticulers; and when occasion requires, make use of the Spanish commoditie, being ambitious of your honor's approbation, which will authenticate all my actions. In the meane time, humbly crave leave to subscribe myselfe,
Most humble servant,
Bordeaux, the French embassador in England, to his father.
I expect the return of Mons. de Baas from the lord protector, who hath sent for him the third time, after that he had made him wait twice without speaking with him, to write my letters to the court; and by reason it is late already, I shall have no time to write in character, nor at large upon what I shall hear from Mons. de Baas, when he comes. In the mean time I will answer your letter. You were pleased to write me the opinion of Mons. Servien: you reduce the discourse you had with him to three points; the first consists in discontents, whereof I was to make use, to let the protector know, that his proceedings do not agree with that of France. The second doth regard the conclusion of a sincere, equal, and just treaty, which I was to press and urge. And the last was the particular difference, which may arise upon the depredations, whereof the English complain. If you do remember what I have formerly writ during my abode in England, you may have taken notice, that the same reasons, which Mons. Servien hath suggested unto you, have been often made use of here by me, and the same reproaches made, as well to the protector as his ministers, as often as I had an occasion offered to speak to them. You know likewise, that in the relation which, I sent of the last conference with the ministers of this council, I rejected and refused all unjust, unequal, and unreasonable propositions, which were offered unto me by them; and that also we were agreed about a treaty of alliance and commerce, conformable to the antient ones; and now at present there is no farther question to be decided between us, there remains nothing more to be done, but to sign, or break. The opinion, which men have of the designs of the lord protector, is grounded upon a false principle, it not being true, that the naval preparations are now more considerable, than in time past; nor likewise that the conspiracy against the protector is supposed to be as my foregoing letters will have related unto you. And as for the shutting of the ports, it is in pursuance of the design or plot; and if any particular men do write any news contrary to ours, it is only conjectural; and all our letters do not give any such great assurance of an accommodation for men to blame us for giving and putting too much confidence in their words here. It is very true, that considering the state of affairs of this country, the disposition of the people, and the prejudice this government would receive by a breach with France, we have always hoped, that in the end he would embrace the most advantageous party, and would prefer the amity of France before that of Spain; but it happeneth so oftentimes, that God doth blind the understanding of those, whom he will precipitate into misfortunes through the fault of their own conduct, and as if he would shorten or abridge the reign of the protector, and that God doth cause him to take such courses or measures as are quite contrary to those, which are necessary for his preservation. This Christian reflection hath made me to lose the third point, upon which I cannot now inlarge myself, there being three commissioners of the council come to speak with me at ten of the clock at night, on the behalf of his highness. I will send an express to carry their proposition, and the discourse of his highness with Mons. de Baas. You will be somewhat surprised, when you hear it.
A paper of the states of Zealand.
The states of the land and earldom of Zealand have cast a diligent and curious eye upon the several writings, which have been exchanged and exhibited at the assembly of the lords states general, and signed according to form or protest in the behalf of the provinces, as well of Holland on the one part, as that of Friesland on the other part, do declare, not only with very much sorrow and grief to hear the bitter dissentions, altercations, and divisions occasioned between the aforesaid provinces, altogether unlawful, being so near allied and united, and most highly pernicious to the commonwealth, especially in these perplexed and dangerous junctures of time; but also do apprehend the occasion thereof, as a business full of trouble and hazard. For although their noble great lordships do not understand or presume to intrude themselves illegally into the government of any of their allies, much less to write any thing against them in matters directly concerning their provincial disposals; yet nevertheless it is their meaning, to take the liberty to declare their sense and opinion upon the affairs, which might be undertaken and resolved by any of the confederates, concerning the common preservation, or more especially being referred by the union, or particular consent of the provinces, to the generality, to which the states of Zealand do judge the seclusion decreed by the states of Holland and West-Friesland to belong, in regard of the prince of Orange and his line concerned therein, for many considerations, for First, it is to be presupposed as undeniable, and not denied by the lords states of Holland themselves, that the said resolution should be taken by them at the request of the lord protector of the government of England; and especially, that thereby they might be able to enjoy the effect of peace, and that such undoubtedly, without any foregoing negotiation or agreement, could not pass on both sides; so likewise, it cannot be denied, but that the same is clearly contrary to the text of the everlasting confederacy and union, which in the year 1579. was made at Utrecht, forbidding not only any provinces, which are included in the aforesaid union, to make any particular union with one another, or to renew the old, for the better maintenance of their public authority and rights and privileges; as also, according to the practice as well of these, as of other neighbouring nations (as without all controversy); but in express terms, that none of the provinces, cities, or members thereof, should make any confederacies or unions with any neighbouring princes or countries, without the consent of the rest of the confederates, upon this ground, that it cannot be imagined, that the same can be done, but with prejudice and wrong, or at least with just fear and suspicion of the other members, who are thereby slighted and passed over; and consequently the same can tend to no other end, than to the weakening and disturbing of the union. So likewise the said resolution could not be lawfully taken for the advancement and accomplishment (as is pretended) of the treaty of peace, without previous knowledge and consent of all the provinces had and taken in, the matter by the ninth article of the union being altogether without any reserve or exception, at the disposal of the generality; and consequently for that cause, and upon that account, cannot be undertaken or attempted by any one, no, nor by more members of the union, without the joint counsel and consent of all, as being all of them therein particularly interested or concerned; besides that, their noble lordships do think upon good ground, to be able to maintain, that in case no prohibitive article be extant in the treaty making mention of the said subject, yet however it would not be fit, nor becoming any of the confederates, to dispose of any thing of this nature, for the reasons aforesaid, without the knowledge of the rest, by reason that not only the provinces by their union stand obliged so strictly and inseparably to each other, as if they were in effect but one province only, but also, according to reasons of state, commonly in a business of that high consequence, nothing can be agreed and concluded by them, or any other members of the union, particularly with foreign nations and potentates, which being done by one, doth trespass upon and diminish the freedom and rights of the other; as also it is not to be found, that ever any one province in a business of this nature and tendency hath done any thing to the contrary, but on the other hand, that the same having consulted and deliberated upon it, never did begin or finish the same without foregoing advertisement of the other provinces confederated, either by being present, or having their advice, which, if need were, might be illustrated by several examples. Besides, the states of Zealand, recollecting their memorandums concerning what past in the year 1651. between the common confederates, being then extraordinarily assembled in the great hall in the court of Holland, can apprehend no otherwise, but that the alledged seclusion resolved by the lords of Holland and West-Friesland, without the consent of the rest, doth differ very much, in many particulars, from the verbal and written declarations of the said confederates made thereupon, the said subject presupposing at large a general affection and inclination to the promotion of the prince in the eminent functions possessed by his predecessors, although the same were suspended for many pregnant reasons, which were judged by the plurality of the provinces to be for the tranquillity of the state; yet with this proviso, that as soon as the season should be ripe and proper for it, to resume the remembrance and affairs thereof, as all those who did frequent that assembly can testify; and how far such is differing from the deliberation held in the assembly of their H. and M. lordships, upon the proposition made concerning the same by the lord protector and government of England, together with the peremptory negative resolution, that was made thereupon, is to be seen in the notes, which are inserted about it, and especially in the text of the proviso set down instead thereof in the thirty-second article of the treaty, must remain with every one, who were present at those deliberations, fresh in memory, with what an alteration and perplexity of mind the said proposition was generally heard, with what an aversion rejected, and how earnestly the same was debated by the provinces, not only for the irreparable injury and disrespect, which was thereby shewn, as well to the whole state as the said prince, as also by reason of the subjection and pusillanimity, which would be thereby shewn by this side; for that all confederacies and obligations, which are grounded upon unequal condition, do draw after them some disrespect and subjection; therefore the same ought to be declined by all those, who are lovers and zealots of liberty; which is a thing so well known to all civilians and politicians, there being no want of examples upon record in history, for proving of remarkable prejudices, which the inferior party hath often suffered thereby; and how can this be more excused of unreasonableness, that a young prince, born in the lap and in the arms of the state, and living under their protection, the first and best qualified person of the United Netherlands, as also of such a high extraction and alliances, being altogether innocent, without any necessity, simply at the instance of an outlandish power, with whom we then stood in open hostility, or do now stand in a new amity, exclude the same and his princely posterity, out of all dignities, advantages, and pre-eminencies, to which he, in respect of his illustrious birth, and according to the successive example of his predecessors, by the most right and certain access, might lay claim unto? And now to dispossess him without any cause, is very harsh and unjust. Besides, in conformity to the union, (which prince William his great grandfather did advance, and sign himself in particular) the common confederates are thereby obliged to maintain the same and his posterity; the more, because it is notorious to all known politicians, that the Netherlands in general, or in particular, are never to be preserved in quietness and peace, without employing in the conduct of the common affairs heads and lords of quality; so likewise, on the other side, the same was formerly declared for an undoubted proof by all the provinces united, and particularly by the province of Holland and West-Friesland, and that no such lords of note were to be found, or to be thought upon to be employed, as the posterity of the lord prince William the first, and those of his blood and family, in regard of his laudable resolutions, heroic expeditions, exploits, and actions, which have been performed by him and his children, without sparing bodies or estates, against the Spanish tyranny, and for the advancement of the liberties and prosperity of the Netherlands; to which end and purpose they did not repent or refuse to undergo any dangers or difficulties, but did willingly and chearfully still support and overcome the same with all magnanimous faithfulness and courage, upon which the foundations of this state are originally built, and have now remained irremovable for the space of eighty years, through God's mercy, against all foreign concussions and attempts; in respect or regard whereof, the states of Zealand do judge, that the said privation or seclusion can be no-wise free of ingratitude and disrespect against the said heroic house; and the said states are thereby not a little troubled and perplexed, that there should be further resolved by the said lords states of Holland and WestFriesland, that they would hinder with their vote, or not suffer, that the said prince, or any of his line, should be chosen to the captain or admiralship of the generality; considering as well the importance of the business itself, as the weight and consequence thereof. Besides, their noble great lordships cannot apprehend, with what right or order the said states of Holland could resolve to do the same, in regard the constitution and nature of the union doth expresly dictate, that the confederates are bound to advise with one another about all affairs, which do concern the confederacy, as they shall think fit, to the best of their knowledge, and as they shall conceive in their consciences, to make most for the glory of God, and the good of the commonwealth; and consequently they are to act without any preoccupation or forejudging, by reason that the freedom of opinions is thereby forestalled or disturbed; and much less are they able to discern, how the same could legally happen against the intention and the custom of the union, in favour, and at the request, (as aforesaid) of an outlandish power, without the knowledge of the other allies and confederates; and therefore the states of Zealand can in no-wise permit, that the lords Beverning and Nieuport could be hereunto lawfully desired by the said lords states of Holland and West-Frielland, or that they could lawfully suffer themselves to be employed without the express consent and good liking of the common state; considering notwithstanding, that the said lords are inhabitants and subjects of Holland, and are there alone in the service of some particular towns, and so consequently, and in that respect, are bound and responsible to the states of Holland; but they, as long as they remain invested with the title and characters as embassadors of state, and that they act abroad in their service and function with their commission, upon the credit and reputation of the state, and that they represent the same, they cannot do or act according to right, than in the name and by order of the generality; and they are not to hearken or give ear to the requests and desires of any other superiori whatsoever, besides that of the generality, as doth clearly import not only the nature of all embassies, and such remarkable commissions in general, but also particularly the instruction of the said lords embassadors, being carefully drawn up for the preventing of all contrary misinterpretations, and by them solemnly sworn unto. Wherefore they could not suffer themselves to be employed at the request of one province alone, especially in a business of such a tender speculation, so contrary to the intention of their H. and M. lordships, and the consequences so earnestly therein demonstrated; whereof they, without all controversy, are bound to give account to the confederates, and are also subject to their censure and correction, as the same, according to the opinion of the states of Zealand, by the most members of the union, is sufficiently constituted, and consequently resuted upon abuse by the lords states of Holland and West-Friesland, although the said states of Zealand could never conceive or imagine the motives and reasons, that should induce those of Holland to make any such resolution, nor that they were in any wise constrained through necessity for the doing of it, either thereby to have preserved the prosperity and welfare of the state, or the fundamental laws thereof; and as the said lords states of Zealand are credibly informed, the said resolution was taken after the concluding and signing of the treaty of peace; so that the said states of Holland were not forced to make use of that resolution for the obtaining of peace, when the same was concluded before-hand, and the treaty ratified and exchanged; therefore it must follow of consequence, that the same was agreed upon before the conclusion of the treaty between the lord protector and the states of Holland; for if it had been out of pure necessity, those of Holland ought to have communicated the same to the rest of the provinces, as to whose disposal that business did solely and most properly belong; and because that through want of such advertisement, whether now the generality without their advice and consent, were not necessitated to remain in such a painful and chargeable war, or whether the same be not prejudiced in their freedoms and rights; which last position the states of Zealand must lay hold of and embrace as the most just; for die said lords embassadors (as their lordships are informed) by their letter of the fifteenth of April last past, did write to the lords states of Holland and West-Friesland, that the seclusion was as a condition, sine qua non, and the ground-work of the whole work; all which doth the more trouble the minds of the said states of Zealand, especially when they consider, that at the request of the lord protector such a remarkable seclusion could be agreed unto; and withal, when they call to mind the dishonour the said subjection and ingratitude will occasion to the goverment, as well abroad as at home, and then what offence and distaste the same will give to all foreign princes and potentates, especially those that are allied to that family by blood, marriage, or affinity; whereas by the seventeenth article of the union, the provinces were bound to take special care, lest thereby they should administer the least occasion of offence. Furthermore, what dissentions, breaches, and divisions the same will occasion, as well amongst the governors of the land one against the other, as also among the common subjects against the government, may be easily imagined, especially when they shall think, how that with the project, and under pretence of the said proviso, the other members of the union have been so disingenuously dealt withal, and covertly abused, as if in effect the said conclusion had been consented to by the lord prince and his heirs, being but desired by the lord protector, whereas the same was held to be here impracticable, and therefore ought to have been declined; the more, because it was pretended, that the said proviso was inserted to facilitate the close of the treaty; which proviso is said to be first projected by the English government; whereof now, since the contrary hath appeared, which can do no other but cause all kind of sinister impressions and dangerous altercations in the minds of many of the governors, upon whom dependeth very much the management of the public, is best known to those, who have long had experience thereof, and who are best able to judge how different the government of this state is in that particular from other countries, in the constitutions thereof. And the states of Zealand do wish with all their hearts, there never had been by this means any occasion given of discontent amongst the confederates; and particularly that no just cause of discontent to the said states of Zealand had been given by that peremptory resolution of the states of Holland and West-Friesland, that they would never receive or make the said prince, or any of his line, stadtholder, or governor of their province, it being notorious, that it maketh for the special honour of both provinces in regard of their vicinity, navigation, and commerce, together with many other interests, wherein the prosperity of both have been wrapped up together for above an hundred years, that it was hard to observe any difference between them to fall out in their public affairs; but they have so managed it from time to time, that they have lived in a joint and brotherly confederacy together; and that consequently the same, since they were made earldoms, they have not only stood successively and without interruption, under the government of the said earls, but also they were to be divided from their alliance upon no terms by the said earls; whereby it doth farther appear, that for many ages, the two said earldoms have always joined together under one and the same provincial court, and have been governed by one and the same stadtholder, as well in time of their earls, as also since their abjuration of the king of Spain, as when the princely authority was consolidated with the power of the states, from which it took its original; so that by virtue as well of the aforesaid right, as possession and custom of many hundred years, it would be unhandsome, nor consist with the power of each other, to chuse a stadtholder effectually, and to set him up over their particular province, without the knowledge and advice of the other; so likewise it cannot well agree with equity, much less with the discretion of so near confederates, as that the states of Holland and West-Friesland have pleased definitively to make the said seclusion, without so much as once hearing the states of Zealand, or to enter into communication with them, as the merits of their cause might have required; seeing they are so contrary unto the union erected between both provinces in the years 1575 and 1576. whereby it is mutually agreed as in the express terms of the text, that the contractors and confederates shall maintain a good correspondence, amity, and neighbourhood amongst themselves, in matters relating to the public; and they are so to form and make their resolutions, as if the aforesaid lands and cities were comprehended under the commonwealth of one city, and reputed as one body. And it would be needless here to dilate and represent what glorious and wholsome effects would follow thereupon, both for the weal of the general state, as to the honour and might of both provinces, as the same is manifest to the whole world, and especially not unknown to the states of Holland, who may be more particularly pleased to think what mutual form of government and correspondence by the deputies on both sides was resolved in the beginning of the war, and what desirable and profitable communications and resolutions upon all occasions of state and consequence have followed thereupon, to the mutual contentment of each other.
Upon all which merits and considerations, since the states of Zealand do most certainly hold forth, that according to the express text, as the manifest intention of the union, none of the provinces are qualified to contract, without foregoing advice and communication of the other provinces, with any foreign powers and potentates, especially in affairs directly belonging to the union; and consequently the said seclusion, concerning the employment of the lord prince of Orange, and his posterity, as relating thereunto, can in no wise subsist according to right; that the same doth likewise differ from the negative resolution taken upon the proviso, and doth moreover imply, not only an unworthy subjection and inferiority in respect of the state, but also a manifest ingratitude to the person and illustrious family of the said prince; and likewise, if rightly considered, by the said seclusion, not only the order and freedom of deliberation and advice is wholly subverted, which hereafter might be formed upon the collation of captain and admiralship of the union, but also the laws and maxims usual in all societies; likewise that the lords Beverning and Nieuport have, according to the judgment of their noble and great lordships, exceeded the limits of their instructions and commission, in that they have suffered themselves to be employed in such an essential point, directly contrary to their order and commands prescribed to them, upon a particular request of the lords states of Holland, without the knowledge, much less the consent, of the generality; but also did exhibit the act concerning the same, sent to them by the states of Holland to the lord protector, as they have confessed themselves in their letter, after that they were advertised of opposition and protests, which were here made against it; and it may be, the same was done after the express command to the contrary of their H. and M. lordships; because they do not precisely express the time when they exhibited the same, as they ought to have done; neither can their particular employment bear them out in what they have done, as being distinct on the behalf of the province of Hol land and West Friesland, as they have alledged, that being quite contrary to the union; which, if it were admitted, would prove of dangerous consequence to the state. And since the said states of Zealand, after most serious examination of the said act, having a copy of the same, that was sent over, they do find the same to be grounded upon such pure and unavoidable necessity, as that thereupon would depend irresistibly the continuation of war with England, and the peace rendered desperate; and having likewise considered, that the said seclusion is opposite and contrary to the antient confederacies particularly erected between the provinces of Holland and Zealand, the said states of Zealand do therefore declare with very much sorrow, to see themselves obliged to disallow and disapprove (for the maintaining of general and particular union, as whereon the peace and security of the state do depend) of all separate and underhand negotiation; as also they do protest against all inconveniencies, breaches, and divisions, that may happen thereby, as well abroad as at home. They do also earnestly desire, that the states of Holland would speedily and really forsake their said design to prevent the same; that so all farther dissention might be thereby avoided, and that a perfect and intire amity and correspondence might be restored between the provinces, and the government reduced to its first lustre, and their reputation preserved; and that especially the union might be maintained, as being the only prop, upon which the building of this state is laid, and after a war of eighty years is brought to that height of prosperity, wherein the same is at present: whereunto doth particularly belong that costly lesson, which the emperor Charles, so wise a prince, and so great a lover of these Netherlands, did leave with them, when he left them in the year 1555. concerning their most necessary inseparable conjunctions, unity, and concord. And as long as they have steered that course, the blessing of God hath still been with them, and hath preserved them in their paternal liberties against the designs of mighty potentates; and when at any time they have gone astray, and turned from that course, they have been still brought into danger of ruin and destruction to fall upon them: for prevention whereof, the states of Zealand do crave God's blessing upon all the consederates in general, and each in particular; and that he would open their eyes of the understanding, to see the truth aright in all affairs, and to do to every one according to their qualities, which right and reason do require.