A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 2, 1654. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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July (1 of 7)
The embassador for the republic of Venice here, having received information, three days ago, of a great victory, wherewith it hath pleased God to bless the said commonwealth, against the Turks, hath distributed a sum of money among the poor.
An abstract of the king of Sweden's letter to Bonnel his resident in England.
Our greeting and gracious will under God Almighty. Forasmuch as we doubt not but the city of Bremen do their best endeavours, as well towards the lord protector in England, as other ways, to lay all the blame of the late arisen difference upon us, and so clear and free themselves thereof; therefore it is our gracious will and command, that you seek to inform every one hereof; and especially, that the said city is not independent, but belongeth to the dukedom of Bremen, and was heretofore sworn to the archbishop, and paid contribution with the other towns in that territory. And although the emperor in the last diet hath been induced to grant the Bremers a place and seat among the other rixtowns; yet that imperial order was obtained sub- and ob-reptitiously, and was protested against by our embassadors, with reservation of our right, us, and the kingdom. And afterwards, when it came to action between us, the Bremers also gave occasion thereunto, in regard they went about to invest the Passeburg, which without dispute lieth in our ground and country; and we could not leave it in their hands, if we would serve the dukedom, and therewith also the whole Nether Saxon circle, as the same hath been at large declared and written in the deduction, which our governor and government in Bremen have caused to be at large signified to the emperor.
The king of Spain to the states general.
Most dear and great friends, as soon as I received your letter of the third of January, whereby you gave me to understand, that a certain quantity of merchandizes of John Charo of your subjects, coming embarked in the ship called the Charity, had been taken by another of Biscay; desiring withal, that I would restore such as were not contraband; I ordered, that the cause should be finished and concluded, having wholly regard to your intercession; but at the same time as I received your letter, the sentence was already given, and the said merchandizes condemned according to justice, except the third part, which was given to the takers. Being desirous notwithstanding to declare unto you the good affection, which I have to please you in any thing that lieth in my power, I was contented to restore that share, which did belong to the fiscal, having ordered the same to be restored to them, as it will be done out of hand. And in all things, wherein your recommendation doth interfere, you will see how much it will prevail with me, and the particular esteem I have of it. Wherewith we pray God to take you, most dear and great friends, into his holy protection.
A letter of intelligence from M. Augier's secretary.
We have, since my last, received the confirmation and following particularities of the siege of Arras, in date of the 8 present,/28. past, that all the archduke's army of about twoand-twenty thousand men, was arrived there, and had been joined by the prince of Condé and his troops, which made their forces to amount to thirty thousand men; that they had not hindered Mons. de Quesnoy, and four hundred horse under his command, from casting themselves into the place, favoured by other troops under Mons. de Baas, which had been sufficiently routed; but that the Spaniards had since framed their siege in such a manner, that it would be very hard to cast any other relief into it without a considerable fight, having caused seven royal forts to be constituted about it, which were already in defence, and divided their army in as many quarters, whereof the first was the archduke's, the second the prince of Condé's, the third the count of Fuensaldagna's, and the seventh the count of Ligneville's, all which commanders were there in person; that besides those forces, there were about eight or ten thousand boors to dig the ground; and that the marshal de Turenne was yet eight leagues from thence, expecting the marshal de la Ferte's junction; after which it is thought there will be some engagement, if it were true, that those marshals were willing and had order from the king, as it is said, to preserve the said Arras at what rate soever. Some other letters bear moreover, that a thousand pioneers coming to the said siege had been met, and wholly defeated, by the garison of la Bassée.
We have but little news of the siege of Stenay. A wise and noble man writes from Sedan, that there was still good hope of mastering it; but that the consequences thereof were feared, withour any further explanation. I hear the marquis of Persan still remains in those parts to cross it; and that in case the place be lost for Mons. le prince, the king of Spain will give him la Capelle and le Catelet for his indemnifying; and it is also said, the Spaniards design is to make him count of Artois.
The duke of Guise hath mortgaged his county of Eu unto his brother the duke of Joyeuse for eight hundred thousand crowns, whereof he has yet only received two hundred livres Tournois, to put himself in a condition to go in a short time to take his leave of their majesties for his voyage of Provence, whereof the design is yet unknown. It is thought now, that it will prove against Catalonia.
Notice is come, that those of the religion at Nismes and Montpellier assembled, to deliberate upon the complaints of the minister put out of Florensac. In the interim, their deputies will here have nevertheless demanded justice thereof of the chancellor, whom they have found more gracious than usually, having promised them, that their business should be moved in the council, which is to sit next thursday. He had also told them, that he was of opinion, that two commissioners should be sent upon the place to re-establish the preaching; but the papists do so oppose themselves thereunto, that it is thought the business will be very uneasy.
The duke of Parma hath written a letter unto the king, whereby he intreats his majesty to agree to the re-establishing of Mons. de Villere in his residency, without mentioning cardinal Mazarin in his said letter.
Major Robert Sedgwicke to the protector.
May it please your Highnes,
Your highnes's command, and my duty, makes me bould to present you with these few lynes. My last from Fiall, by the Blacke Raven, I hope came to hand, wherein was declared our troblesome and afflictive passage to that place. God was pleased the first of June to bringe us in saifty to New-England, where wee found the shipp Church and shipp Hope, both of our fleet, saifely arrived, one five weakes, the other fourtene days before us. As soone as wee arived, we imeditly sent your highnes letters to the severall governers of the New-English colloneys, and had a full concureinge from them all to assist against the Dutch, the Massachusetts only excepted, who so farr did concure as to give us libertye to your rasing of five hundred vollenters amongst them: the rest of the colloneys sent commissioners to joyne with us in consultation for the carring on the designe; so that in fourtene days wee had fitted and victualled our shipps, and soe farr in readines, as within six dayes after that, to have advanced with about nyne hundred foote, besides one troope of horse; but that very day we had almost ishewed off consultation, about our numbers and advanceinge, there arrived a shipp from London, bringing with her diverse printed proclemations of peace between the English and the Dutch, upon which the commissioners of the colloneis fell into another debatte; the result whereof was, to desist and leave of prosecuteing that warr, apprehending we could not, in an ordinary way of pro vidence, expect an ishewe of it within the tyme limitted in that proclemation, wee having not then above fourtene days to act in, and should have spent six of them before posible wee could sayle; upon which they deserted the designe. Yett though wee wear willing to proceed, we thought it not convenient to go forward, when they had all withdrawen from us, and so were forced to leave off acting any more therein. And the truth is, when I considered the vareious and strainge turnes in God's workings and dealeings with us in our voyage, and otherway, it makes me now beleive and apprehend, that hee stood in our way, and hedged us up, to a not suffering us to proseed, causeing our voyage to be longer then is usuall at that season of the yeare, and bringing in that shipp, that brought newes of peace, with a short and prosperous voyage. God is deep in wisdome, and righteous and holy in all his ways, though he frustrate and disappoint our purpose: through his grace wee were and are willing to give up ourselves to serve him and his people; if hee sees it meett not to imploy us, or improve out, we must submitt to his holly will . . . . . . . . . . ended, wee were in consultation what to do. . . . . . . . . . loading for the shippes not ready, by reason of the mistake of him that was to provide the masts, whome we feare is lost in a merchant shipp, that came out in companye with us, whom wee lost in a storme, and before that was very leakey, and no newes of her is as yett.
Our shippes being provided and fitted for the former designe, and our ladeing not readye, it was thought best, according to our commission, to spend a lyttle tyme in rangeing the coast against the French, who use tradinge and fishinge heareaboute. The shippes are to sayle next faire winde, if God permitt. Captaine Leverett stayeth ashore to attend providing the loadinge the shippes, and some other occasions for the commissioners of the navie. Wee yet are willing to hoppe, God may smile upon us, and owne our pore desires to do him and his people service. Wee hope the shipps may retorne to take in their layding about six or eight weakes hence.
Wee shall yett begg of God, that the desire of our harts may finde acceptance with
God and yourselfe, though hee should still frowne upon us; and shall still be earnest at the
throne of grace for you, and that hee may fit you with a spiritt of grace for you, and
hollines and wisdome, that you may yett bee a blessing to his people; and wee are confident God will oune and recompence that labour of love and affection, which you have
largely manefested to the pore servants of God in New-England; and remaine, Sir,
Your humble servant,
At a meeting held at Charles-Town, June the seventeenth, 1654. with major Robert Sedgwicke, and captain John Leverett, commissioned by his highness Oliver, protector of England, Scotland, and Ireland, as by his highness's letters, directed unto the general courts in the four colonies, may more fully appear, for the carrying on a design against the Dutch on Hudson's River, and at the Manhatoes.
Major John Masson, captain John Collett; appeared, and shewed their commission from the general court at Connecticut, dated the thirteenth of this instant June, 1654. where it appeared, that they two were chosen, sent, and authorized to treat, consult, and conclude with the said major Robert Sedgwicke, and captain John Leverett, according to such commission as they have received from the said highness, for managing that affair, and with all and others sent from other colonies, to treat and consult about the said business.
Mr. William Leet, and Mr. Thomas Jordan, likewise appeared, and shewed their commission from the general court at New-haven dated the ninth of June, 1654. whereby it appeared, they two were chosen, sent, and authorized from that colony to treat, consult, and conclude with the said major Robert Sedgwicke, and captain John Leverett, according to such commissions as they have received from the said highness, for managing that affair, and with all and many others sent from the other colonies, to treat and consult about the said business.
First, the commissions from his highness (bearing date the seventeenth of February 1652.) were read; and the said commissioners in behalf of their colonies did declare their thankful acceptance of his highness's tenderness and care, in setting forward that design, so nearly concerning them; and manifested their full and free compliance with their native country therein, both desiring and hoping for concurrence with the rest of the colonies in the same, and desiring to know the reason, why none of the other colonies made appearance to give like attendance upon the said business.
Major Robert Sedgwicke informed, that he had sent his highness's letters both to Plymouth and the Massachusets governors, and also had some treaty with, and shewed the commission to the Massachusets general court, sitting at Boston the last week, who had only granted liberty to raise voluntiers in that colony, with proviso, that for number they exceed not five hundred, and those to be persons not under any legal engagements, as by their order under their secretary's hand did appear. But for Plymouth they had sent two agents, who expressed the willingness of that colony to comply in the design; but not being impowered and furnished for a treaty, were returned home, more fully to understand the mind of the general court, concerning what and how many persons they would furnish for the design.
Which agents from Plymouth not being returned, and none appointed for the Massachusets to attend and consult, the other six, viz. major Robert Sedgwicke, and captain John Leverett, his highness's commissioners; major John Masson, and captain John Collett, for Connecticut; Mr. William Leete, and Thomas Jordan, for New-haven; considering the necessity of expedition in that undertaking, did agree to fit as a council, and proceeded to treaty; wherein upon inquiry they finding, that although the Massachusets had given liberty for 500 men, which liberty being begun to be improved by the beating up of drums in sundry chief towns in that colony, yet not above three hundred could be thence certainly relied upon for the service; and considering that as yet it was uncertain, how many Plymouth would supply; the commissioners for Connecticut and New-haven agreed with the rest, to undertake the work, with such force by sea and land, as were in view, if no more could be procured; hoping that (although the number should not rise to such full or competent fitness for such an expedition, as were to be desired, yet) we may rest upon the Lord for the blessing of success, when as he now calls to the work, and doth deny further means of help, which men are agreed to be raised, to wit, two hundred from Connecticut, and one hundred and thirty-three from New-haven colonies, three hundred from the Massachusets, and two hundred aboard of the ships, all to be fitted both with ammunition and provision by the two colonies, and the commissioners for his highness; and are to be on their march from the bay, being the twenty-seventh of this instant June; they from Connecticut and New-haven to be completely ready to march with them, by that time these may come to their respective colonies.
Tuesday, the twentieth of June instant, 1654. information being brought in, that there
appeared a competent number to the satisfaction of all the commissioners, being met at
Boston, in further consultation about the manner of managing the design with all vigour
and expedition; mean while, this day, there was brought to us a printed proclamation,
declaring peace was concluded betwixt England and the United Provinces, requiring the
cessation of arms between the two nations, and all their members, bearing date the of
April, to take effect, and as notice may be given to each or any place or territory,
belonging to their dominion, in the name of his highness Oliver lord protector; also ordering, that restitution should be made of what so should be taken by each from other, after the
time prefixed therein; which being seriously considered by the commissioners, who came
to treat and conclude about the affair against the Dutch, they did all agree and declare themselves, that as they began and have hitherto proceeded in that business in compliance with
their native country, in observance to his highness's letters and commendation, and so in
like observance and compliance with the same authority, as friends, they readily desist from
the same, believing what they have seen in the printed proclamation, attested by so much
current information from private friends, so persuading their consciences of the truth thereof, that they apprehended a satisfying account could not be given of any further acting in
this design against the Dutch, to be discreet or prudential in reference to these colonies, or
honourable and becoming the settled peace as respecting England; whereupon it was agreed
to dismiss the session, and subscribed,
John Leverett, subscribed with this caution, That for our parts, if the colonies had seen meet, notwithstanding what we heard to have carried on the design, we manifested readiness to assist them thereto.
An intercepted letter to Mr. Mervin Touchet.
Since our coming hither, some few horse have slipped into the town; but three hundred foot of the regiment of Picardy have been taken, and are now prisoners with us. Our line is in a manner finished. All parts of it have been attempted by the enemy, except that committed to my care. I pray God may still bless with the like good success. We have also finished some redoubts towards the town; and I believe there will be another line drawn between them to hinder the sallies, which are like to be strong, considering the strength of the garison. They this morning sallied out with three or four hundred horse, and kept the ground for half an hour. The marshal de Turenne is near us with his army. We have at least 30,000 men; a brave army. God alone knoweth what will become of us.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
In Zealand is arrived a gentleman from the protector of England, &c. with a letter to the states, saying, that he had heard, that the states of the said province were angry, because the lords of Holland had concluded with his highness a secret article concerning the seclusion of the young prince of Orange and his posterity; that the states of Zealand did insinuate, as if those of Holland had concluded that article willingly and without any necessity, for the particular respect of those that govern in Holland; but that his highness, in his said letter to the states of Zealand, did signify unto them, that the intention of his highness was not, nor ever would have been, to have made a peace, if it had not been by the means of such an article, and that it was necessary for the peace and the observation thereof to keep firm the said article; recommending it to those of Zealand, as much as the peace itself will be dear unto them. It is said, that the same gentleman goeth with the like letter unto Friesland, &c.
They do likewise discover, that the confidence between England and Spain is greater than that between England and France; yea that the alliance between the two first is concluded, there remaining nothing more to be done than signing. And if it be true, as the report saith, that the English by virtue of the seventeenth article will have their ships to go as far as Antwerp, Zealand will be so much the more troubled at it.
The inventor of that most wonderful ship at Rotterdam, who had given notice upon the sixth day of July to make his trial, (there being deputed the lords Vander Meyden, Veth, Wolfsen, and Isbrants) hath given notice again, that he shall not be ready yet for some days, seeking the device of some certain iron, which he standeth in need of; but men do believe and fear, that he will find the said device.
The princess royal hath begun her journey to the Spa, which is undoubtedly more for her pleasure and divertisement, than want of health; for she is only too well for a woman of her age, deserving more to be married than a widow. But the princess dowager hath had some sickness, and yet not mortal, being an ague of abundance of humours; to which happened also at the same time the trouble and vexation about the seclusion; which however the one as well as the other bear very discreetly; the princess royal by dissembling and holding of her tongue, the other by general scorn and slighting of it.
Those of Zealand make no mention of it in the assembly of the states general; and as well by their long deduction, as by all their proceedings, they do give to understand, that they are good disciples, proficientes non solum in literis, sed & in moribus; for formerly they were of opinion, and so they likewise told the deceased prince William, that those of Flushing alone were enough to conquer the English, and to establish the king on his throne; but now they are better taught, and more unmannerly. The party of the friends of Orange is altogether timorous and fearful, and the well-affected in Holland rident in sinu, and all the said deduction doth hold forth a great deal of untruth, little of truth.
The foolish ship of Rotterdam is only an emblem of those, who were of opinion, that this state would find their account in the war; a thing impossible. Men do laugh at this foolish ship; men do laugh at the Orange party; and of the seclusion, men do hardly speak any thing more about it.
Zealand itself dareth not form their advice, nor recal their embassadors. The protest, which they have made, is mere fallacious; for the embassadors did not make it, as they stood in the quality of embassadors of the generality; they disown that themselves; but it is not forbid to an embassador to do a good turn for a third person, and in particular in Friesland, notwithstanding they have found some advice; but it is not yet seen. However it will contain the same, that their commissioners have done in the generality, item the disowning of the seclusion; and on the contrary reiteration of their voice, to name the prince captain-general; but Friesland being interested in the navigation and commerce, and seeing Zealand so timorous, will be also fearful; at least many in that province do seem themselves already afraid; so likewise there are some, that are well affected in Holland, and at Groningen the party itself of the friends of Orange, is low.
The commissioners of Muscovy are departed, two returning to Archangel with the Holland ships, and the third to France. The two had each a chain given them of three or four hundred gilders; the third a medal of a hundred and fifty gilders; and withal no other expedition but compliments.
The embassadors of this state, having made inquiry (and by order) concerning the alliance offensive and defensive between Spain and France, have written back, that they have found nothing, and that there is no such thing.
The Dutch embassadors in England to the states general.
Since our letters by the post we have been sufficiently informed, that some merchants and skippers are resolved to drive some kind of commerce from hence to Antwerp; and to that end and design have already a ship ready laden in the Downs with sugars, expecting a pass from his highness. Here is also another ship making ready, which hath received likewise part of her cargo on board for that design, which they do seem here to ground upon the seventeenth article. This may cause some dispute here, because it is not the interest of your lordships, nor of the provinces of Holland and Zealand, to yield to the design set on foot here by the merchants. Wherefore we thought fit to address ourselves to the secretary of state, whom we entertained at large about this matter; and first shewed him the consequence of that passage and commerce, which their lordships were necessitated to make and to agree, expressed in their treaty with Spain, that the Schelde, Sas, and Swyn, should continue shut up on their side. Therefore to remove all jealousies and inconveniencies, which might arise thereby, we thought fit to give him a full information how business stood, that so his highness would be pleased not to give any passes to skippers, since there was no likelihood, that they would suffer them to pass our country directly to the Schelde and Antwerp, the same not being permitted to our own inhabitants. Whereupon Mr. Thurloe very civilly undertook to acquaint his highness with it. In the mean time we shall likewise expect your lordships further resolutions and intentions in a business of this consequence.
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburgh, to the protector.
May it please your Highnesse,
Were I not ingaged by your highnesse command, as well as my owne affection, to be more specially assistinge to the honnest partie among the English merchants here resideing, I could not be provoaked by any of all the indignities the malignants (who have now got the whole power of the court into their hands) can heape upon me, in revenge of my faithfulnesse in the service of your highnesse and the commonwealth, (for other quarrel they have none against me) to be further troublesome in any of my owne or the companie's concernements, havinge beene so unhappie in my former late humble addresses, as never to receive the least intimation from Mr. secretary Thurloe, that any of them came to your highnesse's hands. The subscribers of this inclosed paper, which should have gone by the last post, are (as I take the boldnesse to assure your highnesse) the onely well-affected, and for their quality the most considerable by much in the whole company here resideing. Their adversaries, though somewhat more in number, are yet farre inferiour to them in esteeme, and are indeed the onely men, who from the first of my cominge hither, have notably upon all occasions manifested their dissafection and malignity, not one among them, exceptinge Townley their new deputy, (who for the obtayneing of the place, revoulted to them, to his own shame, and the scandall of the honest partie) that ever since my cominge hither past under, or deserved any other caracter.
It is not long since I made bold to signifie unto your highnesse, what manner of man this Townley was, and how he carryed it upon my publishinge your highnesse letter to the company; as also that then this designe of outeinge me was laid by him and his malignant partie in revenge. This senate and cittie (as well they may, considering your highness tender care and regard of theise mens due protection) admire at their boldenesse in this change, wherein they have notably declared to them and the world, how little they value the import of your highnesse late gratious letter to the company, or any present or future favour the fellowship in general may stand in need of from your highnesse, whilst they so wantonly dare (as I humbly conceive, and is the opinion of all men here) to reflect upon your highnesse in me your servant, to which I beleive they have beene encouraged, not onely by seeing me neglected, but allsoe by some, whose place and trust should have with-held them from such courses, of which I shall give your highnesse a more particular account at my returne. What answer soever it shall please your highnesse to command to be given theise faithfull and humble supplicants, they humbly pray it may be remitted to me by the person delivering these, least otherwise it never come to hand. I shall not owne this ill-got power of the malignants, not permit them to seize the persons or estates of the well-affected, who dissent from them, before I know your highnesse pleasure in that particular; nether doe I beleeve, that the company at London will approve such undue and dishonnest proceedings, but be ready both to discountenance and oppose it, especially if they shall be so commanded by your highnesse. Begginge pardon, for this long diverhumbly subscribe
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburgh, to secretary Thurloe.
I Have received your letter by last post. This day I have beene waitinge on the queene of Sweden, who came hither yesterday post through Denmarke, so as have not tyme, had I matter to enlarge. I wonder my letter sent by the mast-ship was not delivered you; the master is accomptable for it. As soone as the ship comes here, I shall cause her to reloade with the rest of the masts, and seeke to save what charge I can. In my last I inclosed a letter from the queene of Sweden (for shee's called so still) to his highnesse, with another from myselfe, which I presume you received and read. I then gave you notice of my layinge downe the place of deputie to the English company, and the reason of it, which I hope pleaseth all sides. I wish the honnest party may not now be forgot and left in the hands of malignants, which would be but an ill reward for their faithfulnesse. Excuse this hast; I am, Sir,
Hamburgh, July 4. 1654.
Intelligence from Hamburgh.
On the twenty-sixth of the last month, the brother of the new-crowned king of Sweden came to this town, who is travelling for France; and some days after him, the late queen of Sweden came hither likewise, but very privately, insomuch that no body knew of her coming, until two or three hours after her entrance of the city. She hath not above twelve persons in all with her, amongst whom some Swedish earls, and comes per post from Elsenore. It is said, she will expect her baggage here, which is coming after, and then prosecute her intended journey, which is given out to be for the Spa. She lodges here in a rich Jew's house, which (as is thought) was recommended unto her majesty by Don Pimentel, late Spanish embassador in Sweden.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Count William is come back from Friesland, where the general assembly is ended; namely, after that the states of the said province had seen the act of seclusion, which those of Holland had negotiated with the protector of England, they declare it null and of no value, as contrary to the union: consequently they do declare the said prince from this time forward captain-general and admiral, (in pursuance of the other provinces) or capable to administer the said functions, as soon as he shall be of age. And as for the lord Beverning, they do tax him of ingratitude, for having negotiated that without the knowledge of Friesland, who conferred their vote upon him for the charge of treasurer, as well as these; and therefore, ex capite ingratitudinis, they do recall their vote, or suspend it, till he shall have justified himself. Notwithstanding it is remarkable, that those of Friesland do not call home the embassadors, which would have been much more prejudicial; and since that Zealand itself doth not conclude, nor dareth not conclude any thing of moment against the embassadors, I do see and believe, that all will be forgotten.
The prince (formerly earl) of East Friesland hath signified by his agent to the states general, that the emperor had honoured him with the dignity and title of a prince: whereupon the president answered him with a congratulation.
The colleges of the admiralty have had here a very long time their commissioners to draw up a state of the naval war; but because the college of Amsterdam (being the richest of all) did suppose they would have charged them more than they did desire, the commissioners of Amsterdam have absented themselves; the chiefest question being to cleare the debts made during this war of England, whereof those of Amsterdam will soon be discharged, by reason of their great trade; but the rest will be very slow about it, desiring that they would help one another.
In Zealand there is at present an assembly of the states, to see and examine the letter of the lord protector. Orange party are of opinion, that those of Zealand ought to carry this letter to the states general, to make the more noise and disturbance: although that the most part in Zealand are Orange party, yet hitherto they have made no mention of any thing in the states general, neither by word of mouth, nor in writing; and I believe, that those of Zealand will be wiser; for those of Flushing themselves (who were formerly so fierce) are now more moderate and peaceably minded, and do abhor the war more than any body else; and (if those of Friesland did not drive the matter of the seclusion) there would not be any body that would speak of it.
The provincial question of Overyssel, concerning the charge of drossart of Twent, is also brought hither, at least, that the four members, as having the plurality against two, might make use of the military force of the said province against the other two, to introduce the lord Harselt into the charge of drossart of Twent; the other two members (or the lord Ripperda on their behalf) have required an order here of the generality for the military forces of the said province not to be suffered to stir in this business, and not meddle at all in it; wherein the provinces here cannot agree. The resolution provincial of Friesland concerning the seclusion of the prince, hath been read; those of Holland and others have only taken copies of it.
The lord of Merode, brother-in-law to the lord of Opdam, hath been at last introduced to appear in the states general, on the behalf of the nobility of Holland, in the place of the lord Wimmenum. His command of Ravestain hath been given to the lord Heeswyck, father-in-law to the lord Raesvelt. The company of horse, which the lord Merode had, is taken from him by those of Groningen, or by Orange party, who are there; so that he hath or will pretend to have great cause not to favour Orange party, although that formerly he had all his fortune and charges from prince of Orange.
Those of Holland do meet again at present; it is said, that they are about to examine the great deduction projected by their order, and put down in writing by the raedt pensionary upon the subject of the seclusion. The chief design of Holland is to refute the reproach, which Orange party do lay to their charge, of ingratitude; for in this deduction those of Holland will demonstrate, that they have conferred great benefits upon the house of Orange, paid the debts of prince Maurice, given great pensions to him, to his brother, to the dowagers, to the princesses his sisters; yea, to have preferred to offices and governments, all chosen of the said house.
The embassadors in England have writ and given assurance again, that there is nothing of alliance between Spain and England; and yet notwithstanding we are made to believe here daily, that a treaty for ten years is concluded between the said states; and that they had resolved to open the Escault, and that two English ships were already in a readiness to go directly from London to Antwerp.
The present king of Sweden hath writ and signified to this state his advancement to the crown, assuring them of the continuation of good amity and correspondence, and of the continuation of the alliance.
I do wonder there is so much esteem made of the earl of Oldenburgh or his bastard, and of those eight horses; for all this cajoling and caressing, which this earl doth make, doth altogether proceed from a bad conscience; for at the same time, that he sent horses to protector he sent counsel and money to those of Scotland. council of state of Holland hath bitterer enemies than Denmark, and as well the said earl as Denmark will yet deceive him, if they can.
A letter of intelligence from Brussels.
For feare you should grumble, although it bee in the begining of the weeke, I would not fail to write to you, especially being afraid, that I showld not be soone enough at Maestricht to find the post then. I have sent you no gazetts, because they are not yet come out. Some supplyes are got into Arras: yet the Spaniards have bin hitherto prosperous enough, having repelled severall parties, that endeavoured an entrie. Their ligne is by this time finished. Turenne wil be eighteen or twenty thousand, to endeavour the relief of the place, being upon his march there. If he cannot unnest the enemy, he will endeavour to starve them by cutting of theire convoyes; but 'tis said they are reasonably provided for a long time.
The Scots king is upon his way to Spa, where his sister is allreadie gone. I purposed to have taken the waters to; but his being their will hinder mee, being afrayd thereby to render myselfe obnoxious in England: if you will give me the content of seeing you, you must procure me a passeport from his highnesse; however that, I have acted nothing directly nor indirectly since my coming out of Denbigh-castle. If I get home before the post part, I will write agen.
Mr. John Leverett to the protector.
May it please your Highnes,
By my last from Fiall of the first of May, 1654; I presented you with a perticular accompt of the Lord's providentiall dispensations to us in our passadge through the deepes to that tyme, the which, I hope, (through his good hand of giveing leistentant Thurston saife arival in the Blacke Raven) hath come to your highnes hands; since which tyme, after the expence of six weekes tyme from Fiall, he was pleased to give unto us a saife arrival at Boston, the fifth of June following. Upon our arival, accordinge to your highnesse instructions, we delivered and sent your highnes letters to the governers of the several colloneyes, upon their receipt whereof the governor of the Massachusetts cald the generall court, which was so ordered by a former session of that court upon the intelligence receyved by captain Martin, in the Hope, of our comeing, who arived five weakes, and captain Harrison in the Church, about fourtene dayes before us. The court assembled the nineth of June, who retourned in answer unto your highnes's letter to us, an order of libertye for raiseing five hundred volunteers. Upon the same day wee had two messengers from Plymouth colloney, with a letter expressinge their readines to attend your highnes's pleasure for the extirpateing the Dutch. Upon the twelfth of the same month, wee received letters from the governer of New-haven, and deputy-governer of Connecticutte, whoe advised of the assured concurence of their colloneys to the work; as a rattification thereof, New-haven colloney sent their commissioners from Connecticott the day after, with full power for to joyne with us, to carrye to an end your service. The seventeenth day of the mounth wee meet with them; and upon our meetinge wee proceeded to put forward the designe according to our severall preparations, wee for volunteires, the other colloneys haveing ordered the raisinge of men by press; so that we are in a verry hopefull and probiable way for affecting the worke, and proseeded, as accordinge to the enclosed may more fully appear, which is a true copye of the consultations of the colloneys with us, which was ishewed the twentyeth day of June, haveing received intelligence of the conclusion of peace between the two nations, and perused the proclamation of the twenty-second of April, 1654. by order from the counsell; also the other of the twenty-sixth of April, by order from your highnes, by which the commissioners of the colloneys brought all matters of consultation and preparation to an end by declininge the prosecution of the designe, whereupon wee see the Lord ishewing the work committed to us by your highnes, in reference to the Dutch, haveing prepared and fitted the shipp, and entertayned men; so that there was a fittednes for some material service; and the layding for the shippes not being in readines, it was conseived, that to spend a little tyme upon your coast in lookeing after the French might turne to some accompt, and be of some use to the English in these parts. The major Sedgwicke haveing received commission and instructions from the honorable generalls of the fleet and the comissioners of the admiralty, for the seizeing upon the shipps of any of the subjects of the French king; by vertue of which, and the other considerations afore-mentioned, major Robert Sedgwicke is this day set sail with a fair wind to the French coast, haveing the Augustine, Church, Hope, and a small catch, whom the Lord in mercye direct and prosper to the glory of his owne name, and good of his people! Myselfe, not knoweinge wherein I might be of like service to goe upon the designe, as by settling the busyness for laydeing of the shipps, when God shall give them to retorne, doe remaine at Boston, haveing to that busyness another committed to mee with captain Francis Norton, about the release of a Dutch prize, which major Sedgwicke seized, comeing of the cost of England; conserninge which one Mr. Smith is imployed by some gentlemen of London, who pretend right theirto, and to the loadinge, being French wynes and rossen, some feathers, and some kid-skins; but not haveinge an order from your highnes, nor the honorable the commissioners of admiraltye, and the depositions they brought thwarting the wrightings taken in her, major Sedgwicke hath ordered the dispose of her; which accordingly will be attended, though much loss by leakadge, through a long and tempestious passage they had to New-England. Sir, I have been too tedious, yet could not ebreviate to touch perticulars according to my dutys; the workeings of the Lord towards us in our passage, our proceedings since arrivall, bringing us so neere to the action, and then at once to knocke us of, are to the most considerate wonderfull. The labor of your highnes's love in this action, is eyed and acknowledged with much thankfullnes generally, and the Lord hath given you much roome in the harts and prayers of his poor people in this wilderness, yea in the greatest and most unexspected tornes of providence about your highness; and great are the expectations, what the Lord will please to do by you in this adge of so many and greate overtornings. The most High keepe you low in your owne eyes in your hyest exaltations, that he may still delight to exalt his own name in and by you; which is the daily request of him, who is desyerous to serve your highnes in the Lord,
An intercepted letter to Sir Gervase Clifton.
There are letters now come very lately from Paris, which I have seene, and there the fourth day of July, stilo novo, hinting that the Scots king was most insallibly to depart from thence upon wednesday last, and that he was to goe towards the Spaw in Germany, who at or before the date of the sayde letter had sent away all his carriages with his bag and baggages towards Brussells. Hee takes along with him onely the marquis of Ormond, and Sir Edward Hyde, who as yet manage all his councils and affairs, as they have done now for a long tyme, and so are like to continue to doe, untill they come to the Spaw; at which place the lord Willmot meetes with the sayde king, there to wayt upon him, who for a long tyme has beene his agent, not onely in Scotland, but at the imperial dyett with the emperour, and among all the Germane princes, purposely to raise men and moneys for the king his master's relief; and it is beleived, he will come thither plentifully stored in that kind, at which meeting he is designed to be equall with the marques of Ormond, and Sir Edward Hyde, in the councill and managerie of all the sayde king's affaires for the future, who steeres his course for the Spaw, though some say, he will visit Turin or Chambery, the duke of Savoy's court, first, and then repair afterwards to the Spaw; from whence, if he thinks to view England, it must be with a large and very long perspective-glasse. I heare the only chaplayne hee takes along to waite upon him in these his travells, is Dr. Earle. The queene with the duke of Gloucester, and the rest of the children, stay still at or about Paris, and soe does for awhile all the rest of the English noblemen and others, whom of late that king has found by woefull experience, to have beene most damnably false and treacherous unto him; but it is thought, that soe soone as hee is gone, they will not be long out of England afterwards. The new-crowned king of France, with his mother and cardinal Mazarino, are now at Sedan, the duke of Bouillon's towne. The reason of their being much there, is, his armye's beseidgeing of Stenay; a strength of great importance, and scituated upon the river. I heare prince Rupert (after his mad wild-goose chase) is now come to Heydelberge; and his brother prince Maurice, who was given up for a lost man long agoe, is now knowne to bee prisoner among the Turkes in Algeir. The pope lyes now a-dyeing; and there's an expectation of a great bustle and commotion to happen at the election of another new pope, because of the high divisions at present between the interests, or rather factions of the French and Spanyard. The high court of justice began to sit in judicature at the high court of chancery in Westminster-hall upon fryday last, and there and then adjourned untill the tuesday following. They then convented three before them, viz. Fox, Vowell, and one of the Gerrards. I had thought to have related so much of the storye thereof unto you, as has come to my knowledge. I thought good to be silent, and rather crave your pardon for spareing my paines therein. On saterday last the lord Whitlocke from Swedland arryved here in London, and went away imediately to the lord protector, who was then at his country house at Hampton-court. The high court of justice sat this day, and adjourned without doeing any thing. To-morrow morning the Portugal embassador's brother is to receave his tryall at the upper-bench barre in Westminster-hall; theise being appointed his judges, viz. the lord chief justice Rolle, (who preesides) together with halfe a dozen councellors at the lawe, and as many advocates or doctors of the civill law, all whom take in, so to be their assistant, and a judge with them too, Sir Henry Blunt, the great travellor. It is already generally beleived, that he shall escape.
General Monck's certificate concerning-major general Monroe.
These are to certify all whome these may concerne, that major general Monroe, during my tyme of command in Ireland, did refuse to obey any orders from the parliament of England; and likewise did assist duke Hamilton with forces out of most of his regiaments there, against the parliament of England. Given under my hand and seale att the campe at Dunneene, the fifth day of July, 1654.
A letter to Monsieur de Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
The court is still at Sedan. They make now-and-then some little journeys to the siege of Stenay, which doth still continue. The success is not yet certain. The besieged do defend themselves stoutly. There are 1400 men in the place. In a sally out, which they made lately, they killed Mons. de Naveray, captain of the guards, and wounded others. On the other hand, the enemy hath besieged Arras. There are ten thousand peasants employed to work in the trenches. We shall venture the relieving of the place or fight, by reason that the king's army, commanded by the marshal of Turenne, and de la Ferté, being almost 20,000 men, are in sight of that of the enemies, which is 25,000 strong.