A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 2, 1654. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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September (3 of 5)
The Dutch embassadors in England to the states general.
In our last we did fully inform your H. and M. lordships of the solemnities and ceremonies, which were observed here at the meeting of the present parliament, and the substance of the speech his highness made in the painted chamber to the members, that appeared there; adding withall, that the first deliberations were to this purpose, That in the first place, they should articularly examine the government of the commonwealth, concluded the sixteenth of December last. Whereupon a council of many honourable members was appointed, who did confer and debate some days upon the same, and especially upon the first article, whereby the supreme legislative power was agreed upon to be and remain in one person and the people assembled in parliament: and report being made thereof back to the parliament, the opinion of the members was not conformable in many circumstances to the intention of his highness; nor yet so unanimous, that they could or would conclude upon it, it being, as we are informed, the intention of many, that his highness, in quality of protector, should be settled and continued during life, but with the form of a new election and delegation from the parliament, and not upon that foundation, which was laid the sixteenth of December last, nor by virtue of the instrument, which was then concluded and agreed; there being also, besides, several considerations moved upon the constitution of the present council of state; and likewise propounded, that the parliament ought to make therein some alteration, and to have the sole authority and nomination of the next alone, to be at the further disposal of the parliament. But these considerations being made known unto his highness, they were nowise pleasing unto him, tending to the unsettlement of the present government; and in a few days the deliberations sell into extremes; and in the mean time it is said, that another party, called the Anabaptists, under the direction of Harrison, was busy to get the hands to a petition to present to the parliament; so that his highness was moved thereby to secure Harrison at his house in the country, and to remedy what was acting in the parliament, and to send for the members into the painted chamber, as happened on tuesday morning, at nine o'clock, there being several regiments of soldiers dispersed up and down the city, and all places well secured. His highness told them after a long speech, that he must hinder their meeting, unless they would sign the recognition of the present government, as it is now established; and so went away from them, having left order, that upon a table before the parliament-door the form of the engagement should be laid for those to sign, who would sit in parliament: and as his highness went away, so likewise many of the members departed. Some 145 signed presently; and the next day some 50 more. There are others, without doubt, who after some consideration will do as the rest have done, sign, and sit in parliament, as they ought, and not stand without at the door, and be laugh'd at.
To cardinal Mazarin.
There is much uncertainty in affairs of state. Men speak here so doubtfully of the agreement with France, that I tremble. It is said, that we have taken twenty ships laden with salt, for the king's gabelle. Besides, there is a report, as if France were drawing, their forces towards the United Provinces, to assist the Orange party. I cannot believe it; for by that means France would declare point-blank against my lord protector, who in the parliament hath been declared to have sole power of our armies, both by sea and land, to the end his designs may be kept secret. They are still raising of men here for the fleet, whose design none knows but his highness; the parliament itself is not acquainted with it: a very strange thing! Our kings have submitted to the parliament; at present no such thing: his enterprises are only known to himself: he doth in this, as he did with his business in Scotland and Ireland: he did his work, and spoke afterwards. Notwithstanding these rumors of the treaty being broken off between us and France, yet I am told, that the same is putting into Latin. Certainly we are led into the clouds; we know no longer what to believe. There is no body hardly can judge aright of the intentions of our superiors, no more than a blind man can of colour: but that which is most admired at is, to see that France should neglect to compose their business with his highness. If you will do good to France, prevent the breach, that is between us; for if once it be broken out into an open war, your trade will be utterly ruined, besides the continual alarms your country will be still subject unto through our fleets at sea; and what alteration may happen thereby at home, is uncertain. Mons. Servien told me once, that it was easier to make a war than a peace: I am sure Holland found it so to their cost; I wish it may not fall out so with France.
Mr. William Prideaux to secretary Thurloe.
The other, that goeth herewith, is a dupplicate of what I sent your honor by a ship of Hambourough bound thether, and under cover to what sent the governor of the Russia company. Discoursinge at sea with the most able and experienced merchants, that have traded to this countrey, touchinge the fashion and manners of the emperor's court, of which I had from them information, and withall told me, they wondred the company would send me to his imperiall majestie with soe small a retinue, as they give me allowance for, (which is onlie for three persons besides myselfe) beinge that the major part of them, that have lived at Mosco, and know very well the reflection, that is made at that court on the porte; trayne; and equipage of a publick minister, not regarding so much the carracter hee beareth of a prince sent to this emperor. The like discourse was held unto mee at my first cominge ashore by the merchants of our nation, that for many yeares have lived in these parts; which I takeinge into consideration, did upon the demands, that was made mee (the daye after my arrival) from this vyvode, by the secretary, that comes to me, how many persons I had with me, to give their names and qualities; I tould him, I had six (whereof four did sit at my table) and gave the names of so many, which I have effectively; and with that number doe intend to goe to the emperor, for not to disparrige his highnesse and my employment: but for the expence that this will require, I must make use of my credit; and how to be reimbursed here, I know not of as yet.
Our merchants are now at a period of theire trafficke for the present mart; and although they have made bad bargaines, in putteinge of their goods at small rates, takeing the Russes at great prices; yet our men have good quantities of goods remayninge to sell, which they intend to leave here. And whereas at the first coming hether, the governor signified unto us, that the emperor's order was, that as soone as the mart was finished, our merchants must returne beyond sea, without beinge permitted to staye heere, nor to goe further into the countrye; notwithstanding the answere I have since obtained from the vyvode, chancellor, and others his majestie's officers, that our merchants, that will staye heere to looke to their goodes, shall have free permission to doe it, and to remayne with all securitye, and be curteously entertained, and for their depart may, when they please, goe to Colmogro, a citty distant sixty miles from this place, up the river; which permission, these officers give me to understand, they doe of their owne authority; but they will write such letters to the emperor, that it shall not onlie be well likt of, but they hope I shall have from his imperiall majestie greater favours for the nation.
Two dayes hence I intend to proceed on my way to the emperor. Heere I embarke on a greate boat provided me by the vyvode, very commodious, which will carry me to Vollada, a citty distant from hence 1200 verze, (every verze is a thousand fathom, of six foote every fathom; which I make to be an Italian myle) upp the river, saylinge when the wind is good, and the river broad; but when contrary and narrow, drawne by men; for which purpose we have thirty. From Vollada to the emperor's court of Mosco is other five hundred verze by land, which to travell in summer way, will be tedious, and aske many dayes; soe I supose shall have order to staye at Vollada till winter weather, when the earth is covered with snow, and that frozen, we make those five hundred verze in sleds, in five or six dayes, commodiously; and soe I make account it will be about the tenth of December, before I shall arrive at Mosco, if the emperor come thether; of which it is yet uncertaine, by reason of the contagious sicknesse there; nor can I tell yet, where I shall see his imperiall majestie, nor where to proceed towards him further then Vollada; for I suppose, that these will come time enough to your honor's hands to receave your further commands then those I have, before I see the emperour, or departe this country. In my returne, if your honour please to write backe upon the receipt hereof, as I thinke the company would doe to me. That, which hetherto I have observed (and learned of others) of this people, is, that the men are rather of a tall then middle stature; they are withall gross, and stronge; and those strangers, that deale with them, find them subtle and crafty, but are very pusilanimoues. They are of the Greeke faith; but in some rites and some other thinges in theire devotions and reli gious practices, diferent from the Greeks of Greece. They are very superstitious, and ignorant of learninge, and in parte are held soe by the prince, as a maxim of state, who will not have them study. The bibell they have in Sclavonian tongue. Theire carracters are parte of that language, others of the Greeke idiome, and others of their owne speech. 'Tis said, the men are much addicted and doe exercise the abominable sinne of sodomy with boyes, and use beasts; and in those vices not inferiour to Turkes and Italians.
The present patriarch of this empire is a man about fifty yeares of age, and of meane learning, who giveth the emperor to understand, that hee shall be master of the whole world, and that all nations shall come to be of his religion.
The emperor is esteemed to have more money in cash then all princes of Europe together. Hee hath also more commerce for his owne particular account, then all the merchants in his vast dominions; and his merchants doe his businesse for nothinge more then what they can steale. All qualities and conditions of his people are held as his slaves.
For the settinge forward and mentayninge the present warre he hath against the king of Poland, his people doe pay the tenth parte of their estates; those of the cittye of Mosco, accordinge to the vallue, that they themselves saye they are worth; but all the rest of the countreye, as they shall be esteemed to be, by commissioners appointed for that purpose.
The emperor coynes noe other money but such as I send your honor a peece here inclosed, which is called a Copeike; fifty of them make a dollar, and are made of dollars, and pieces of 8/8 ryalls, that are brought into this countrye, by way of commerce.
For matter of victualls, both flesh and fish are here in great abundance, and good cheape. Their drinke is beer, mead (made of honey) that's good and pleasant. Both men and women of quallity, that have meanes to spend, goe rich in their appariall, and weare many jewells, and in particuler pearle in abundance; especially of those that are fisht in the Scotish sea, and are called by the name of Scotish pearle.
We have noe newes from the emperor, nor of what he doth in his warres; neither
know I of any thing, that merits your honor's cognizance: wherefore doe humbly take
leave, and remayne in all observance,
Archangell, 16. Sept. 1654.
From hence very little of state affaires at present, the court being taken up in preparing of all kind of festival jovialties, and extraordinary fireworks, for the solemnizing of the royal nuptials, the bride being now shortly expected. Here is arrived one of the landgraves of Hesse-Darmstadt, by name landgrave Frederick of Homberg, who had audience ten days ago, and was at dinner with the king's majesty, who returned hither from the country on wednesday last, being the twelfth instant. The French ordinary embassador M. d'Avangour hath not yet had his audience, but is to have it on monday or tuesday next. He keeps a very close house, having hired his lodgings very near the castle, for the space of two years. We long to understand, where the extraordinary English sea-forces are going, there being many variable conjectures here, but no certainty of their intentions.
A letter of secretary Oste.
The king came back to this city on tuesday last, and hath given order for the reception of his bride, who is shortly expected here. The lord embassador d'Avangour doth expect further credentials from the king his master, there being some exceptions made to those he hath, the court there not knowing the alteration here: wherefore the French resident is necessitated to defer his journey back a while longer, upon the proposition of the envoy of Lunenburgh, concerning the mediation between this crown and Bremen. There hath passed nothing further about it, than what I advised in my last.
A letter of intelligence.
I Received yours of the twenty-first instant, by which I see you have great hopes of your present government to prevail in spite of all enemies; which I pray God may continue. We have from Toulon of the fifteenth instant, that Mons. de Guise, with a great many of his officers, were there as yet, and all their troops in the country near them. It is believed, they will not be shipped yet these fifteen days to come, till they receive new orders from court; and that, as some say, to know the designs of the English fleet gone to sea, which, as some say, is not to be trusted.
As I writ in my former, his majesty and court parted hence last wednesday, being the twenty-third instant, and lodged at Nanteuil. The cardinal was carried in a chair by reason of his indisposition of gout, with which his eminency was troubled three or four days before they parted.
Thursday following, his majesty went from Nanteuil to Soissons, where he stayed that night; and next day went to la Fere, where they are now. Their design is not well known as yet. Some think, they will besiege la Capelle; others, they will not, but endeavour to quarter their army this winter upon the enemies. We shall soon know the truth. It is confirmed by many, that marquis de Mont-Olympe is treating with the cardinal for his government, he being a great friend of cardinal de Retz in time past; yet the cardinal Mazarin offers him the government of la Fere, with twenty-five thousand livres for the government of Mont-Olympe.
The troops, that we had in Guienne, to the number of five thousand men, are now in Vendosme, and marching towards the river Sein at Mantes, to join with Turenne's army, to winter also in Flanders this year.
We have, by letters from the frontiers of Picardy, that prince Condé defeated a small convoy of ours near Thum, and has passed this side of the river to endeavour to hinder our army from relief, ours being fortifying themselves in Binchi.
The doctors had some hope of the recovery of duke de Joyeuse, till now; but at present, they say, he cannot live three days; a gallant man. Mons. marshal d'Estré, being sick of the stone, was yesterday morning cut, and hopes of his recovery, though he be eighty years old. The cardinal, before he parted, bought the marquisate of Nesle, yearly worth 60,000 livres. We are informed, that the accommodation of Madame de Longueville is made with her husband the duke of the same name; and that she is come to him now from Moulins, where she retired herself in a monastery all the while past.
The letters from Valenciennes of the nineteenth instant bring, that the enemies were decamped that morning from Mantes, and having the river d'Aisne in them places, posted themselves side by side by ours within two leagues, theirs being very considerable and gallant, as they were before Arras, before they lost any thing, are now so well furnished in all things, both bag and baggage, and artillery, enough of provision and ammunition, and in number 25,000 effective men. They were like to take Mons. marquis de Castlenaux Mauvissieres, who lost some of his baggage, men, and horses, because the enemies passed this side of the river unexpected; which seeing, marshal Turenne caused his army to march towards Rocroy. The enemies do intend to make ours quit Quesnoy, before it be long.
His majesty was pleased to give the prince of Conti 100,000 livres by the year, out of
his brother's goods, payed out of l'Hostel de Condé: he has given him also the seignory
of St. Maure, near Paris, and that of Chasteau-Briant, in Bretagne, which belongeth to the
said prince Condé. I have nothing else at this present, but that I am, as you know, Sir,
Your real servant.
A letter of intelligence.
This day Willmot goeth to Cologne, from thence to the elector of Brandenburgh and Saxony, as also to all the other princes in the Upper and Lower Saxon circles. George Waites goeth with him as his counsellor and prime confident. His train is small, but as an envoy. I got so much favour as to read most part of the king's letters to the princes, tending to the payment of their consented supply of money, and that in all haste, in respect of his resolution taken for his going to the relief of his friends in Scotland. This is all I have from secretary Massonet, with whom I am dealing to quit his charge, and go for London. There have some letters past between the king and queen of Sweden, by means of the old lord Goring. I beseech you, send some understanding man to Berlin, who can acquaint himself with old general Sparr, and lie at his lodging; for he is an open-breasted man, and hath good intelligence what is done at that court. By him he may have intelligence what Willmot effectuates. Colonel Turner is come from Scotland, hath made his relation to the king; but pleaseth him not. Since his coming, he is very melancholy.
All is going wrong there, if the king go not suddenly home. He tarrieth here till the bening of this winter, and goeth not for Cologne; but on monday eight days, convoyeth his sister thither, and cometh back again. Sir, if George Waites come from Hamburgh, or thereabout, be assured he cometh to ship out arms from thence for Scotland; yet the greater sort believe, that all will be kept and provided, till the king's going for Scotland, as they will all go at one time together, when no ships are at sea; but the best to prevent that is, to have some ten or twelve ketches of six or eight guns to wait on them, with twenty or twenty-four musketeers on each of them, to keep the North-seas. If these shall be cast away, the loss is not great; and certainly they must be attended on. Colonel March talks here, their plot now is for the landing some men, but for the impatraining some part of the Low-land, and suddenly intends to fortify it. I suspect, that from the dukes of Lunenburg and Brunswick some assistance of arms and victuals may be shipped in on that side of the river of the Elve.
A letter of intelligence from colonel Bampfylde.
I Had soe little to say by the laste poste more then what I wrote your sonn worde of, concerninge the state of the French and Spanish armyes, that I doe not remember, that I gave you the trouble of my letter, as knowing you had not that tyme businesse of to great importance to be dispenced withall, for the reading of any unnecessary papers. Nor doe I nowe beleive your occasions less, or my informations soe much the more materiall this weeke, then they were the laste; that I should not conclude it needfull to tell you, that this is principally to let you see, that I cannot omitt any opportunity of letting you knowe, howe truly I am your servant, when I have any thinge besides the bare assurance of that, which may recompence the trouble of my letters. I have written to a person you knowe of, to meet me, whoe, I beleeve, will very shortly; if I can take him of from the course he is in, it will be, in my opinion, conducible to the end you drive at, as it may be beneficiall to himselfe. The French armye is retyred beyond the frontiers, without prosecuting their victory, accordinge to the great advantages, which the weaknesse and distractions of theyr enemyes gave them; which yields occasion to manie to beleive, that they are upon some very secret treaty. If it shoulde produce a peace, what the consequence woulde be in relation to theyr neighbours, is not very hard to conjecture. They had taken (or rather possessed) some places of small strength, and less importance, neer Bruxells, which they began to fortify, and intended to have made theyr winter-quarters in the Spanish territoryes, both to have eased theyr owne countrey, and to have prevented their enemyes businesse against the spring; which they had certaynly done, and not that alone, but have caused theyr present force to have mouldred away, if they had confined them to such narrow quarters, as only a small part of Brabant, and less of Flanders; but they are withdrawne, and have quitted the places and advantages upon passes, which they had, and have given the Spaniard much more roome, whoe have really an army of 160,000 men. The French beseidge a towne of their owne, which the prince of Condé caused to revolte, soe as they will not lye idle during the treaty, if there be one. If it succeede not, they gayne a towne in the interim: if it takes effect, they recover only that, which they shall need to part with upon any capitulation, it not belonginge to the Spaniarde.
The king is, I beleeve, removed by this tyme to Collen, where he intends to reside for
some tyme, at least till he can have some good occasion to remove more to his advantage
then his laste motion has been; which is with great confidence expected ere long. I shall
trouble you noe further in this way at present. I am, Sir,
Your moste humble and faithfull servant.
Another letter of the same.
I hope you had my laste, and should have a longer nowe, but that in earnest I am very ill of an extreme colde; besides, I am sure you will be noe stranger to what I have wrote to your father; soe as it will be but troublesome to us bothe to write one and the same thing to you, that I have to him. But by the next I will be larger, although I were destitute of all hopes, that you woulde write mee all the newes, that's fit to be imparted from your parts. The man wee met betwixt Dover and Canterbury, riding poste, did knowe mee. He is gone over into England, and may finde means to pumpe you, unless you be a little carefull. I have noe more now, but that I am, Sir,
Your moste affectionate servant.
A letter of colonel Bampfylde's.
I have this poste but little to trouble you withall, having not yet mett with the person, whoe, I tolde you, I intended to speake with; but am in dayly expectation of him here, and shall then be able to say much more then I can nowe to all thinges where he is, as well as what concernes himselfe; and if my perswasions can bring him to that, which I should beleeve his owne reason and interest showlde lead him to, I knowe it will be of full as much advantage to your affayres, as of benefit to his particular. The French have not prosecuted theyr victory with that activity and vigour, which they obteyned it by, or that their enemyes fears and distractions gave them opportunity for; which gives many sober men grounds to beleeve, there is some very secret treaty betwixt both states for an accommodation. What influence that may have upon his majesty's affayres, and upon the English nation, you are soe much better able then I to foresee, that it were but affectation in mee to be larger in that particular. They had taken some little places of noe great importance neer Bruxells, but have quitted them agayne, and are retyred towards the frontiers, wher they beseidge one of those garrisons, which the prince of Condé caused to declare agaynest the king of France. What the name of it is, I have forgotten. This and what you will finde another way, is all I have for the present to say, more then that I am, Sir,
Your moste humble and faithfull servant.
Intelligence from several parts.
Of news from hence you cannot expect more, than here is expected from your new parliament; but seems by yours, there is not much to be done in England, but to settle and establish their government, of which many here are sorry, they hoping for some greater change in England and Holland.
I have seen a letter from a good hand in Madrid of the thirtieth of August last, that his Catholic majesty, and all his court, mourned for the death of the king of the Romans; and that duke Charles of Lorrain is arrived at Toledo, accompanied only with his own people, with his consessor, one page, and his secretary; the rest being disposed of by orders from his majesty, and provided for in such manner, as they may handsomely live.
In the said letter it is said, that the difference between his majesty and the Gencese is adjusted; and that the king sent orders to his galleres and naval forces, not to offend hereafter any that belonged to Genoa.
The news from this place since my last but this to you, are not much. The prince of Condé, hearing marshal Turenne was possessed of Binch, a village fortified, and within three leagues of Mons, sent presently a thousand men into Nivelle, and afterwards towards Mons, to get his whole army into a body; and now our army is drawn to a body, which being seen by the enemy, they joined all together, and retired from Binch, and marched towards Maubeuche, and from thence to Beauvois; and yesterday they were encamped betwixt Chateau-Cambresis and Quesnoy, and they suffer much for want of victuals in their army. It is reported, they intend to besiege le Capelle Chastelet. The next may let you know. Our army is betwixt the townes of Condé and Valenciennes, and St. Ghilliain, whereby they endeavour to shelter the country from being preyed, as now is pretty well done; for our army is about 20,000 strong, and daily increasing, new troops coming from Germany; and we have moneys for them. The fourteenth instant or fifteenth, a party of 500 French horse arrived at Maria-Monck, within a league to Binghret, entered into the royal park to hunt the deer, which being known to ours, Mons. baron de Lubeck was appointed to wait with a considerable party their return, as he did, and met them, fought, and destroyed, not above four of them escaping, but were slain or taken prisoners. The inhabitants in all these parts of the country fly with their goods and cattle near and into the cities, for fear of their enemy; but not so much now as last week.
The archduke took a view of the burghers here, and has chosen of them 10,000, to whom he gave orders to be in readiness for a call, in case of the enemies approach; which they promised to do with great acclamation. In the mean time we daily repair the fortifications of this city, and keep strong guards. Also we search narrowly after persons suspected for fear of treachery, or some that might endeavour to raise the people to a mutiny; so that no way is left for security unattempted.
The loss before Arras is now solely attributed to count Fuenseldagna; for in case the
French did not assault ours in their trenches, the army could not longer submit; for they
wanted powder, balls, and many other necessaries. It is behind, Fuenseldagna shall be
by orders from Spain removed from hence, and count Garcias with Don Ferdinando Solis
in disgrace. What further of it, time will let you see or hear of; which is all now, but
that I do not hear of marques de Leda's going embassador into England: the distractions
here may be the cause of it, &c. Adieu, Sir,
A letter of intelligence.
Die 21. hujus mensis movit exercitus Gallicus Binckio versus Malbodium, inde Bunaco Quercetum, inter quod modo & Scaldim subsistit. Hispanicus est ab altera parte fluminis. Princeps Condeus, dux Witenbergicus, & comes Marsin, cum quatuor millibus equitum conati sunt capere extremum agmen recedentium Gallicarum copiarum; sed illæ tam bene semper processerunt instructa & ordinata acie, ut nullam jacturam sint passæ. Munitur strenue Quercetum, quod non perinde recuperabitur, ut occupatum est ultronea Hispanorum deditione. Hispanicus exercitus hodie est lustratus, repertus omnino major expectatione. Timendum ne multi se insinuârint conductitii ad obtinendum stipendium, qui, cum pugnandum erit, forte non comparebunt.
Prince William Frederic of Nassau, to the states general.
Your H. and M. L. are sufficiently informed, how that his imperial majesty hath been pleased to promote to the princedom the three Nassau lines of Eillenburg, Siegen, and Hardamar, whereupon the churfust Brandenburgh's embassador, Blomendel, on the behalf of my house Nassau, was publicly admitted into the public society; and there he took his place, and had his vote granted unto him, with other princely prerogatives, as is to be seen more at large in this diploma of the emperor, which was sent unto me a few days since by the churfust of Mentz; which I out of a near respect to your H. and M. L. have sent unto you to read; and to assure your H. and L. withal, that no alteration or promotion, either in honour or dignity, shall make me averse from doing and performing the duty I owe to your H. and M. lordships, and the welfare of the state; but that I will always remain in sincerity of heart, and faithfulness, for the good of the commonwealth in the service of your H. and M. L. the rest of my life.
Extract out of the secret resolutions of the states general.
Upon the representations made in the assembly by the lords the deputies of Holland, concerning the repeated memorials, presented here before their high mightinesses by the deputies of the city of Bremen, containing a request of assistance for their city in her present circumstances; after previous deliberation, it has been agreed to and resolved, that some deputies, in behalf of this state, shall be sent to Bremen forthwith, furnished with credentials and letters of address to the senate of the said city, as also to general Koningsmark, the present commander of the Swedish armies in the duchy of Bremen and thereabouts; as also, that by virtue of the directorium conferred on their high mightinesses in the fourth article of the alliance between this state and the Hans-towns Lubeck, Bremen, and Hamburg, made respectively in the years 1635. and 1646. some deputies shall be summoned from the said cities Lubeck and Hamburg, to appear at Bremen aforesaid. Further, that the said deputies shall have directions, together and with the deputies of the said cities, by mutual good correspondence and advice, to do all possible endeavours, to the end, that the differences fallen out between the crown of Sweden and the said city of Bremen by their mediation may be adjusted in an amicable way, or at least to bring it about, that in the interim all hostilities may cease on both sides, and be abstained from. And in case this, against expectation, should not be obtained, that their noblenesses shall make their report to their high mightinesses, to the end, that the same being heard and considered, such further resolutions may be chiefly deliberated upon, and taken upon the said subject, as according to the exigency of the matter shall be thought necessary. Further it has been resolved, that in the mean while, by a civil letter, notice shall be given to the king of Sweden of the sincere intentions of their high mightinesses, with a friendly request, that he would be pleased to give to the said general Koningsmark, and other his majesty's ministers there, such orders and directions, that the said endeavours may be brought to an happy issue. As to what was further proposed concerning the appointing of a resident in Sweden, the same is put off.
Bordeaux, the French embassador in England, to his father.
I see in your letter of the twenty-fourth, the opinion of Mons. de Brienne upon my negotiation; but it would be very necessary, that his letters were conformable to his words. He sent me word not long since, that I should not press too much, till I had received resolution of the court upon the article of the royal family. However, I would not have failed to have concluded, if the matter had been disposed thereunto before the sitting of the parliament; and I do daily expect commissioners, with whom I parted in my last conference, as if all had been agreed between us, and nothing left undecided. If the protector hath not altered his mind since, or that my commissioners intended sincerely, my affairs are like to end very suddenly.
You have understood by my foregoing the little change happened here. There hath followed no alteration upon it; yea many of the commissioners have signed that act, which the protector did desire for the securing of his government; and now they are busy in the parliament about an act to be published to justify the late proceedings of the lord protector. This is the only news, that this country doth afford at present. I have no new subject to write to the court at this time. You are in a condition to inform them, and to justify me from the reproach, which Mons. de Brienne hath cast upon me, there being no hindrance or delay at all happened to the treaty through my fault.
A letter of intelligence.
By your second bills of exchange for 160 rix-tallers, besides what I had before, in all amounting to 100 poundes English; to secure the last part, I came hither from Aken, where I received faithfully the said monies, and to-morrow I return to Aken, from whence you shall at large hear from me per nexte, of which you may be assured, if I live.
I pray remember, that in July next the 24th, I begin my journey, as you desyred; and since have beene in your service at such expence, as the nature of my busines requires. When 'tis due time, I hope you will consider it.
The sad representation of the affayres of R. C. in Scotland is nowe confirmed by others; soe that for all his dancing, I beleeve he has a heavy heart; but he has some hopes of divisions in England and the United Provinces; and if all that sayles, he will attempt some other wayes, as tyme will demonstrate to you; which is all I can say of it at present.
Here is a common report, of which your letters say noethinge, that the protector went into the parliament-house, and there had his peroration for an houre; and that after, the parliament with unanimous consent called his highness emperor; and his title they have written thus: Oliver, the first emperor of Greate Britaine, and the isles thereunto belonging, allways Cæsar, &c. Your nexte will cleare this.
The lord Willmot is not yet gone; but will this weeke for certaine, without some other accident shall happen, yet unknowne. I doe heare, that there is for him 5000 rix-tallers at Francfort, of the monies promised to him by the imperor. Some he received before, and more yet due.
The princess royal will part from Aken the nexte weeke for Breda, as they give out; and R. C. will tarry a while after at Aken to receave answere by his emissaries, as also monies, armes, and other assistances promised.
The lord Taaf is sent by him to Antwerpe, to salute the queene of Swedland, and about
some other busines of noethinge. You are to add to my last lift of his retinue of English,
coll. Price, coll. Tuike, and Mr. Allin, one of the grooms of his bed-chamber. I cannot add more at present. The next from Aken itselfe shall give what you shall occur,
In the meane tyme accept of this from, Sir,
News sent from Paris to Mr. Stouppe of the 29th of Sept. 1654. [N. S.]
The king hath sent an express to the duke of Orleans, to know if it would please him, if the queen of Sweden should lodge in his palace in the Fauxburgh St. Germain, believing, that she is to come to Paris; but others do doubt of it, because she shews now, that she hath too great an aversion for France, and affection for Spain.
There are news from Picardy, that the marshal de Turenne was invironed by the army of the prince of Condé, which is along the river Scheld, about Montanenot, and that this marshal was betwixt the said town and that of Brussels, and could not go out from thence without fighting, and is in great want of victuals for his army.
The letters from Low-Bretagne and Low-Normandy do note, how the English had seized many French vessels, which did return from the New-land, and others which did come from Spain laden with merchandize, and had taken fifty or sixty of them; that being, the commerce of France upon the sea must needs be broken.
The twenty-eighth of the last was made a decree against the cardinal de Retz, bearing, that one shall inform against him; and that according and conformedly to the commission they had received of it from the king.
There is news, that the king is still at Soissons, and that his majesty hath sent most strict orders to the troops of the duke de Guise, to join with the army of the prince of Conti. One relates also from the court, that an express was come to the king from the said prince, who prays his majesty in all humility to give him leave to return into France, he being unable to subsist any longer in that country, because of his indisposition; and that it was unknown, whether he should obtain his leave or not.
News there is of the army of the marshal de Turenne, that he had raised the camp from Beins, where he was, and had passed within Manbeuge; and that he was gone towards Landrecis to attain Guise; and that passing by Manbeuge, it should happen, that the marquis of Saveuse had staid there to hear mass, there being four squadrons of horse, that did wait for him, which a party of the prince of Condé knowing, had entered in that place by another door, where being, had fought in such a manner, that ours were totally routed, and that the marquis had a shoulder all broken and bruised with the shot of a musqueton.
One writes from Bayonne, that the dukes of Retz and Brisac are still at Belle-isle, resolved to not surrender it. The marshal de la Meilleraye did dispose himself to go and besiege it; but it may fall out, that the Spaniards, who are betwixt Bayonne and Belle-isle, will hinder this design.
News from Switzerland, written to Mr. Stouppe the eighth of September.
Mons. Dury hath been above three weeks at Berne, where he hath conferred of all with the lords of the council, and of the church: touching his project, he finds all things disposed to his will, as also at Zurich: he is now at Basil. We shall shortly see the event of his treaty. One shall write to the lord protector. The embassador of France doth still urge the league with our cantons, the which being effected, he offers to give satisfaction; but one will be paid before to hear any proposals.
The pope is sick of a dysentery. Some cardinals come nigh to Rome. Donna Olympia does all with the cardinal Barbarin. Genoa continues its arming. The French in Italy are stronger than the Spaniards. They have spied Casal and Crescentin. Venice doth her last endeavour against the Turks; but one must at last forsake all, if they are not powerfully assisted.
News of Holland the 24th of September, 1653. [N. S.]
He, that nameth himself king of England, is still at Aix, uncertain if he shall stay there, or remove to Cologne, or pass into Scotland: his council, as ordinary, is much divided. The count William of Nassau and his wife have done a great journey to go and see him, and have been received with many balls.
The lords states of Holland, which are assembled since last week, have done nothing considerable; and it is also believed, that they will depart without speaking of any other thing, than of the means to find money. The lords states general, on their side, seem to be very much pacified.
That which amuseth mens minds here, is to hear of the English fleet's going to sea. Every man conjectures, but none know the design. As for the business of Scotland, the disaffected party will not give credit to what is writ or printed. The news out of Poland is very little, only it is credibly reported, that the king is broken from Warsaw to the place of his residence, the twenty-fourth present, and is gone for Littaw, to raise the country against the Muscovite, which is feared will be too late, unseasonable weather being at hand, and the year so far spent.
Boreel, the Dutch embassador in France, to the states general.
By this post I have received your H. and M. L. resolutions of the sixteenth and twentyfirst of September last, concerning Henry van Dentecom. The disorders against the Netherland merchants and their goods at Marseilles are now together remedied by the good order, that hath been given there for the quieting of the same, and the preventing the like for the future.
Some ships have been here consiscated, that did belong to the subjects of your H. and M. L. some others have been restored by the king and his council. Your H. and M. L. will be pleased not to take it ill of me, if I here by permission do declare, that there will be never any end of the piracies here, but by making or renewing of the alliance with this kingdom; that the treaty of navigation and commerce cannot be obtained alone, unless as a part, and as an ingredient, of the said alliance, by reason of the absence of the court; and that no more lords are authorized to treat apart with me about a treaty of navigation and commerce; so that I cannot do any thing more in order to your H. and M. L. resolution of the twenty-fifth of September.
A letter to Monsieur de Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
I have received your packet, and sent away your letters to my lord your father, who is at la Fere with the court, where they will stay a fortnight, being as much time as will serve to satisfy Quesnoy, which the army is obliged to secure, before they can undertake any other siege. The marshal of Estrée hath been cut for the stone this week, and is pretty well after it, for the time he hath been cut, as a man can be in his condition.
Chanut, the French embassador in Holland, to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
To dispatch that, which doth press me most, I do acknowledge the obligation, which I am owing to you for the favours shewn to the abbé of Issoire, far beyond what I deserve. I did very well prognosticate, that he would be troubled with a consumption. He writes me word, that he hath found the cure in your purse. I give you many thanks for the favour; pray write me word, to whom I shall repay it.
I perceive by your last letter, that the matter of your negotiation doth advance a little. I must consess, that the point, which causeth a stop on your side, is very ticklish; and I should no less scruple at it myself, but we have dispatched as difficult things as that; and if there be only that scruple, I make no doubt, but you will overcome it. Your last letter did also advise us of the danger of the protector with a fall out of his coach-box: certainly it was very great.
Mons. Jongestall is not yet arrived, that I know of. The wind is not favourable. If Mons. Nieuport do also return home, you will have none but the lord Beverning, which will be more easy unto you; for in matters of business one doth dispatch sooner with one than many. It is impossible but you should always have one thing or other to do with the ministers of the states general; and you cannot have to do with a fairer conditioned person than the lord Beverning, as I do hear by those here, that do know him. The province of Overyssel have taken, as you have heard, the prince of Orange for their stadtholder, and during his minority count William to administer for him. I just now have received a letter from a French captain, that is in one of the garisons there, who writes word, that the count William of Nassau hath made his entrance to Zwoll, in quality of governor. Deventer doth oppose him, with great number of the nobility. But I do comfort myself herein, that they write me word, that this difference will not cause them to take up arms. God preserve the provinces from such distractions! Some did imagine, that Holland would have sided with Deventer, and sent them a relief of men; but I do hear, that they do not intend to take any such resolution; and I do think they do very well; for nothing can pacify the civil divisions: when they have once taken up arms, and that both parties have well drawn blood, it is a hard matter to reconcile them.
The states of Overyssel to their deputies.
We understand out of the report of the lord Quadacher, out of sundry letters, and from the lords our commissioners to the conferences at Winsem, that the lord drossart van Zallandt, with some of the lords commissioners in ordinary, have been pleased to appoint again an extraordinary assembly against the third of October, at Zwoll, in order to confer there the day following concerning certain matters. Therefore we cannot but represent to your noblenesses anew, that we still observe with an inward grief, that our good and cordial intentions for the welfare and union of our province are answered with so little sincerity and uprightness; that after so many reiterated protestations of an inclination to help to accommodate the differences, that are risen among us, and to restore a good harmony and sincere love between the members of this province, that we say, at the same time, when you give us repeated assurances, to renew an amicable conference, the words do so greatly differ from the actions, that instead of helping to remove the causes of the present differences by summoning an illegal and separate meeting, as likewise by projecting new points of convocation, among which there are even some of the greatest weight and consequence, matter and cause is given for new controversies. Your noblenesses cannot be ignorant, from the preceding protestations and manifold reasons alleged for that purpose on our side, as also from your noblenesses own knowledge of what has happened, that it is a notorious and unquestionable law, that the ordinary assembly of this state, for this present year, being legally and in due form met together, according to the order and antient custom of government, and not yet broken up, no body can have any right, under what pretence soever it might be, during the said session, to issue out any new summons, or points of convocation, without being for that purpose expresly authorized by the same. Nay, if the said session were broke up, yet it is our opinion, that the same ought not to be held in any other place than here, at least not within the towns of Campen or Zwoll, without an evident infringement of the old hitherto observed custom; especially it being questioned besides, if not in the summons thereof several members of the nobility are left out, as we for certain are informed, that this has been done before; it being very well known to us, that others, contrary to form, have been summoned; which only thing, though an assembly be otherwise unquestionable and legal, and beyond any contradiction, will make the same lawless and illegal, not only for the known reasons, that to make a legal body of convocation, all the members must legally be summoned thereto, but also because of the old and antient practice, which has been constantly observed in this province, that in case those of the country have not summoned, either designedly, or for some particular reasons, all and every one of the nobility by himself, duly, and in manner aforesaid, such an assembly was obliged to break up fruitless, and the said members were to be summoned over again and anew, whereof sundry instances might easily be alleged. And certainly we cannot wonder enough, that it is pretended under the name of your noblenesses, and of the worshipful magistrate of the city of Zwoll, that you thought necessary for some, for that purpose alleged, and other reasons, that an extraordinary and separate convocation ought to be summoned touching the affair of the election of a stadtholder; understanding also, that your noblenesses, in your assembly, have come already to a definitive resolution in relation thereunto, and have sent, besides this, a deputation to those members of the nobility, that have formerly favoured the drossart van Lingen with their votes in his pretended claim to the droffart's place of Twent, to bring them over to your sentiments by the weight of the consenting vote of two towns, without any previous conference or communication with the other members, which are unheard of proceedings in an affair of so great consequence and tender concern, as is the election of a stadtholder, and comprehends such a considerable share of the administration of sovereignty, which, as a special pre-eminence and prerogative, is devolved on all the members in general, and being again for several years consolidated and exercised in the sovereign and general assembly, can consequently not be taken from the same without common consent and good will of all the members, met together in a lawful assembly, and ought not to be proposed without being previously considàred in particular conferences, and after having heard the opinions of the several members; and in case this should be done, we flatter ourselves, that we are able to shew and to prove, what really is, and tends most evidently to the good of the country, so plainly and evidently, that no body of a sound and unpre judiced understanding shall question the same. Therefore we cannot believe, that the said proceedings spring from a free and mature deliberation of your noblenesses, but rather that they come from those, that for some time, we know not how, but without doubt by sinister and artificial ways, have so often endeavoured to make a wrong use of the name of your noblenesses for the encompassing of their projected designs, and now likewise make use of the same, to draw into their particular broils some eminent and illustrious persons by such and the like proceedings; and thus and under that name to skreen their odious transactions, your noblenesses themselves, according to your own wisdom, may easily conclude and be persuaded, that in case, against expectation, they should proceed in such an assembly, which we declare by virtue hereof, together with all whatsoever they shall happen to conclude therein, to be illegal, null, and invalid; to an article of such great moment and considerations, we cannot consider the same otherwise than a real encroachment into the rights and privileges of each member in particular, and usurpation of the sovereignty of this province. These and more other arguments if your noblenesses will be pleased to take into your consideration with due attention and examination, we do not question in the least (which we also friendly and earnestly desire) but your noblenesses will assist in making and giving such directions, that the like proceedings may not be entered upon, especially among other arguments, for this particular reason, that what we in this case, for the maintenance of the sovereignty, liberty, and rights of this province, (more dear to us than all considerations, nay dearer than our lives) should be forced to do and to resolve upon, may not be to the prejudice and detriment of such gentlemen, who because of the merits of their ancestors, as also for their good qualifications, are greatly esteemed by us: and further, that the said assembly, which must needs give cause to further differences and disturbances, may be intirely laid aside, and instead thereof, those just and equitable proposals for the composition of the present differences, which we have made by our commissaries at Winsem, may be at last agreed to and accepted to-morrow; whereupon we expect your answer, and commend your noblenesses to the protection of the almighty God.
Count Oldenburg to the protector.
Serenissime ac celsissime domine Protector,
Retult mihi redux ex Anglia illustrissimus perdilectus meus filius, & oblatis cum munere magnisico serenissimæ celsitudinis vestræ literis benignissimi favoris & affectus plenissimis, maximopere deprædicavit gratiam ac benevolentiam, qua serenissima vestra celsitudo ipsum officia humillime ac paratissime cum meo, tum suo nomine offerentem complexa & persecuta est. Rediere itidem, quos ad serenissimam vestram celsitudinem ablegaveram, deputati mei, spem & fiduciam de vestra in me benevolentia pluribus comprobantes, & testati quam gratiosa & prompta facilitate meis serenissima vestra celsitudo petitis annuere, ac non solum me meosque comitatus ac baronatus, verum etiam meum ex forore nepotem, celsissimum principem Anhaltinum, in tractatum pacis inter serenissimam vestram celsitudinem & dominos ordines Fœderati Belgii initum assumere, insuper & amplissimo diplomate jura neutralitatis & exemptionis a parliamento reipublicæ Angliæ ante triennium impetrata confirmare voluerit.
Tot tantisque beneficiis a ferenissima vestra celsitudine obrutus, nescio unde gratiarum
agendarum initium vel sinem facere, aut quibus modis & mediis ea ex voto & debito promereri possim. Memoria certe eorundem non nisi mecum expiratura est; & in id incumbam
maxime, ut si plura non licet, saltem gratum esse voluisse ostendam, atque benevolentissimum tanti principis & herois affectum sartum tectum mihi conservare queam: nihil enim
mihi accidere poterit gratius, quam ut serenissima vestra celsitudo per mandata sua promptissimæ, meæ voluntatis experimentum facere, simulac media & occasiones suppeditare
dignetur, quibus, gratitudinem debitam comprobare & demonstrare possim, quod ad extremum usque vitæ spiritum sim & permaneam
Serenissimæ vestræ Celsitudinis humillimus & paratissimus servus,
Antonius Guntherus, comes in Oldenburg.