A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 3, December 1654 - August 1655. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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August (2 of 4)
Thomas Bourne to secretary Thurloe.
Since my partie went away, I have certen information, that mr. William Cowley is gon to London, but to what plas they cannot tell. It may be the corporall, who cumes allong with sir Thomas Harries, may give you further of him. I am
Shrewsbury, August 11, 16555.
Col. Alured to secretary Thurloe.
Your greate sevillity to my wife, in presenting her petition to his highnesse, hath imbouldened me to make this my adrese to you, to let you know, I spoake with his highness one fryday was seavennight: he was then upon goeing to Hamton Courte, but commanded me to wayte upon him the munday following, which accordingly I did, and allmost every day the last weeke, but his more weighty affayres prevented me from getting audiance. Now my humble request to your honour is, (if I may not too much intrench upon your goodnesse) that you would acquaint his highnesse therwith, that if he please to speake with me, that he would appoynt me a time; not that I thinke much to attend still, but that I am not at my owne disposall, soe cannot doe it singly. Sir, I have had above tenn monthes tedious imprisonment, which, I hope, will now pleade my excuse of this truble. If you please to returne me his highnesse answer, it will be an obligation put upon,
Mewes, August 13, 1655.
Serjeant Dendy to secretary Thurloe.
About 5 monthes since you were pleased to promisse me your favour to move his highnesse to passe my conveyance of lands in Ireland under the broad seale, for want of which I am like to be throwen out of posession by some of the adventurers, though I have had posession above 12 monthes; and this though there be lands enough in the same barony to satisfy all those, who have their lotts there. Wherefore having received a letter since my wife attended upon your honour, which tells me, how the adventurers threaten me, though I have as good right to hold myne from the commissioners conveyance as any other; I therefore humbly beseech your honour to move his highnesse, that he will be pleased to graunt his royall assent for the passing of the said lands to me under his highnesse broad seale, which will for ever obleige
August 14, 1655.
A letter of intelligence.
The Swedes under the command of count Magnus de la Garde have taken in the city Mittau in Courland, and have demanded 300,000 rix dollers contribution of the country round about, besides quartering for their soldiers.
Extract out of a private letter of the 14/24 Aug. 1655.
Sweden will have in effect every thing from Brandenburgh, and will not suffer the alliance with the state. What now is to be chosen, is the main point in hand. If so be that Brandenburgh should fall out with Sweden, the assistance of the states is lookt upon as of no great consequence; and if he conclude with Sweden, then he must desert his friends and his own.
The lord of Schieverin is come back from the king of Sweden, bringing with him the conditions unconcluded; but the king sends Schlippenbach after to treat further. The duke of Brandenburgh will hardly go from the alliance made with the states: the issue time will demonstrate.
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburg, to secretary Thurloe.
I have received your letter of the 3 instant, and delivered the enclosed to mr. Rolt, whoe arrived here on thursday last; God haveinge beene very gracious in preserving them beyond what could be imagined, of which I presume hee will give you a particular accompt. The fregat having lost all her cables and anchors save one, the captaine desired me to supply him here, which I have done, and he is returned to the ship with 3 new cables and 2 anckers, haveinge good pilots with him to get her out to sea, where I hope she is by this tyme. By the next post I shall give you an accompt of the charge, and drawe my bills for it, as I should have done to furnish mr. Rolt the needfull, had you beene pleased soe to order it, with whom I shall hold correspondence whilst he is in theise parts, and in all things be serviceable to him, as he shall have occasion to use me, beinge very desirous of any opportunity to serve his highness in those that relate to him. I am glad the Swedish ambassador is like to prove soe good an instrument for the continueinge of the begun amitie and confidence twixt his highness and the kinge his master. The enclosed paper shewes you what can here be knowne of the further motions of the Swedish armie. I am sorie you have yet noe letters from the West India fleete, fearinge it may goe ill with them for want of supplies. I perceive the company had been to attend his highness with the letter from hence, but found him not at leasure. It seemes they are very forward in countenanceinge that partie. I hope your next will acquaint mee with the resolution of his highness and his counsell in that busines, that I may truble you noe further with it. Townley and his partie here (whoe call themselves the company) have been very forward at the company's charge in their respects to mr. Rolt, to engage him, if they could; but I presume he will not give them any recommendation. The well affected have not beene wanting in their more reall respects to him, whoe departs to morrow on his journey to find out the kinge of Sweden. Referinge you to the enclosed paper, I affectionatly remaine,
Hamb. August 14, 1655,
Major Rolt, envoy to Sweden, to secretary Thurloe.
I Received yours of the 3d on the 10th day of this instant August, and therein a particular of the occurrences, which have happened since my departure from you, for which I retourne most humble thankes, not forgetting the high obligations you are pleas'd to put uppon me by your hearty and affectionat well wishes towards mee in the safty and prosperity of my journey; wherein be pleased farther to know, that after our goeing on shippboard, which was on the first instant in the evening, wee sett saile out of the Downes, and in order to his highnesse commands one friday morning we sett my uncle collonel Cromwell on shoare at Schiveling neere the Hague, which gave us great hinderance in our journey, being forced, lest wee should have indangered our selves by comming on shoare on the coast of Holland in the night, to drive twelve howers without making any saile. On friday the Lord was pleased to give us faire weather, but a very strong gale of winde all the day, and soe it continued till eleven of the clock at night, at which time it began to be very tempestuous with great gustes of winde, and a driveing misty raine. All the night we drove without making one knott of saile, expecting every hower, that the north west wind (which we had all our voyage till we came to Hamburough with much violence) should have driven us on the coast of Friezeland or Emden, to which we knew not how neere we were, for the strenght of the storme had made the marriners loose themselves, there compasse and glasse being become alltogether uselesse. In this exigence the captain of the ship, whose care and abilitie I cannot sufficiently commend, lett fall an anchor, indeavouring to have rid out the storme; but the tackling being not proved in such weather, quickly failed his and our expectation, for the cable broke, the storme in the latter part of the night still increasing, wherupon the captain commanded another anchor to be put out, wherin lay our last hope that way, but that allsoe quickly deceived our intentions, for the stresse of wind was such, and the sea did runne so high, that the cable began to give way, and (to agravate our distressed condition almost to despaire) the ship through the extremity of weather we feared would have foundered under us, which had she not been very strong must certainly have come to passe. Therfore the captain to ease the ships riding at this second anchor (which was all we had but one small one, to which we durst not trust) caused the maine mast and the foretopp mast to be cut down, and foure gunns uppon the upper decke to be throwne over board, which last was performed with soe much danger and difficulty, as proved the strongest occasion of saving the rest, which otherwise undoubtedly must have run the same fortune. About a quarter of an hower after the losse of our masts, this second anchor began to come home, which was about six of the clock on saterday in the morning. All that day we drove, expecting every minute ether to be swallowed by the waves, or to be splitt uppon the sands, where we must have all necessarily perished in this deplorable and sad condition, expecting death uppon our knees, the Lord being not pleased, that any thing by our owne endeavours should contribute towards our safty, that he alone should have the glory of soe wonderfull a deliverance, which is justly due unto his name, in the midst of judgment remembring mercy, was pleased somwhat to abate the storme one the Lord's day in the morning, and the weather to cleare up. Therfore taking hold of that, though allmost hopelesse occasion, we resolved to make for land, whilst it was day (a course in all humane probability very neere as desperate as our danger) such sails as we had left we gott to the yards, and followed a ship of small burthen, which we discovered at a distance, supposing she had made land; and after two howers saile we found ourselves by sounding to be in the bay of the river of Elve, which much rejoyced our drooping spirits, hoping there to find some means wherby to save our persons, though not our shipp, if wee could gett in; but the Lord was pleased to doe for us, better then we were able to wish to ourselves; for had we gott in, being without sufficient tackle to ride with in soe shoale, rapide, and rough a river, we had without question been cast awaie; but by God's gratious direction and providence, though ignorantly in respect of ourselves, we were driven into a sandy harbor, where we cast our small anchor (and the only one we had) about 3 of the clock in the afternoone on the Lord's day, and there roade till tuesday towards the evening, when we quitted our weather beaten shipp; and for our better expedition in our journey, we hired a small Dutch hoy up to Hamburough, at which we arrived on the 9th instant about six of the clock in the morning; where at present we doe, and shall, for the better refreshing of our tired bodies, and wearied spirits, stay till to morrow morning, intending then to sett forwards towards Stetin. Only give me leave to tell your honor, that during my aboad heere, I have received many civilities and expressions of kindnesse from the resident and the English company of marchants, being by them speedily after my arrivall invited and brought by coach to the English house, where I have ever since beene courteously accommodated. Uppon saterday last mr. Peterson, late resident for this state to his highnesse, was sent by the burgomasters of the towne with very ample expression of their affection and service to his highnesse and the commonwealth of England. I was according to the custome there presented with a vessell of Renish wine, which I beseech your honour to accept from mee, as a poore but hearty acknowledgement of those strong obligations of service and respect, which the manyfould expressions of your love and favour towards me, have continually put upon me. The care of safe conveyance the resident heere hath beene pleased to take uppon himselfe, and therefore I doe not doubt you may certainly expect to receive it by the first English ship.
Presently after my comming to shoare, hearing of one mr. Muller, resident for the crowne
of Sweden in this place, I sent unto him my secritary, with my service, to lett him
know, that I was a person sent by his highnesse to the king of Sweden his master; and
withall did desire such information and direction from him, as might put mee in the best
and reddiest waie for the dispatch of my journey to him; in order whereunto he gave
me a vistite this morning, and withall tould me, that his master departed from Stetin
to Dam fourteen days since, but where he is at present he could give noe farther certaine
account; but believes he still marches onwards into Poland, and that we shall not be able to
overtake him till we find him before Warzow, which promises to surrender to him.
There is noe farther news heere, but the discours of Swedish successe, which puts these
parts to the gaze. The perticulars I am not able to write, being grounded uppon such
uncertaine and contrarious reports. By the next I hope I shall be more able to give you a
fuller and more perfect account. Thus having, I feare, tired out your patience by a tedious discours, I am bould to take my leave, humbly begging you to reade and beleeve,
what I really am,
Hamborough, August 14, 1655, S. V.
Fleetwood, lord deputy of Ireland, to secretary Thurloe.
I Should acquaint you with the persons ordered to be disbanded, but that my time is short, and I presume my brother Cromwell will give a more full account; only this at present, we disbanded 36 companyes of foot, by reducing coll. Hubbard, coll. Clarke, and coll. Axtell's regiments, with some loose companyes; only coll. Clarke is to have a standing regiment of the remaining army. Coll. Axtell will be continued in a more inferior commande. The horse to be disbanded are, 4 troopes of late lieutenant generall Ludlowe's regiment, sir Theo. Jones, and Ma. Meridith's being continued, 5 troopes of sir Charles Coote's regiment, and capt. Barington's troope of my brother Cromwell's regiment, one troop of Abbott's, and 5 troopes of dragoones of coll. Ingoldsbye's regiment, himselfe to have a regiment of foote. We shall, I hope, bring the establishment within 28,000 l. per mensem; which abates of what it is at present, about 17,000 l. per mensem. I must needs sollicit for the addition of 1000 l. more for to answer the charge of Ireland. Excuse this rude account. My haste is great, who am
August 14, 1655.
Fleetwood, lord deputy of Ireland, to secretary Thurloe.
Wee are put to a great straight, not knowing well what to doe, being not able to continue the present army, as now it is, and yet to reduce them is that, which (untill our forces come out of England) may prove very hazardous; yet the necessitie wee are in for want of money put us on a resolution to lessen our charge by a speedy disbanding, which will force our men to extraordinary dutie, not long to be continued. And therefore I shall desire you will move his highnes for the immediate sending away of our troopes and companies now in England; otherwise there may be greater inconveniencies follow this worke of reducing, then is at present understood. I hope it will appeare, that there hath bine a due regard had to continue such as may manifest there constant faithfullnes to his highnes. If there be a resolution to send any of the reduced men from hence to generall Venables, it had bine happy, if wee had received therein at there sitting downe, because otherwise I doubt it will prove more difficult. I should be glad to understand, whether there be any resolution taken up, for the disposall of the money, which is to be gathered heere for the Waldenses. I wish that delayes in that busines doth not occasion the cooling of men's affections towards them. If some way might be thought upon, to improve the collections, which have bine made for them, to bring them hither to plant, I thinck it might be well. Certainly that blood God will avenge. I shall not further trouble you, then wih subscribing, what I am,
August 14, 55.
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major general of the army in Ireland.
I Received your lordship's by the last; and to what concerns the sending back the sorces that are here, orders are already given to the horse to returne: four troops goe out of Scotland, and two from hence. It is also resolved, that the foot shall be sent back; but they will be kept, untill a regiment of foot can come out of Scotland. This is all I have to trouble your lordship with, this week having administred no news at all. I beseech your lordship to excuse me to my lord deputy, for not writing to him. I have nothing worth his trouble. I remaine
Aug. 14, 1655.
A Commission, whereby his highness doth constitute general Monck, Roger lord Broghill, Charles Howard, esq; and others, to be of his council in Scotland, for executing such instructions, as they shall receive from him and his council; and is to continue in force until the 24th of June 1658, and no longer. Subscribed by mr. attorney general, by warrant under his highness's sign manual.
A warrant to the exchequer to pay unto the present treasurer at war 4000 l. upon account, for the use of his army, for paying of the forces in England and Wales, that are to be reduced, by virtue of the establishment for the army lately passed by his highness and council. Subscribed upon signification of his highness's pleasure mr. by secretary.
Mr. William Prideaux to the protector.
Maye it please your highnesse,
It was your pleasure to approve of the election the Russia company of merchants made of mee, to carrye your highnesse letter to that emperor Allexea Michahlouich, which I delivered into his majestie's owne hands (the company had little hope of it, when I departed England) and from whome I have now returned to your heighnesse, with his answer received from himselfe. Now as it is my duty with the delevry of it to give your highnesse an account of my negociations and transactiones in that imployment, I doe here with all humillity remonstrate to your highnesse the sequell.
By my severall letters written to mr. secretary of state Thurloe from Archangell, the 25th August to the 16th September; from the citty Vollogda, the 16th December; from Mosco, the 24th February, 3d and 17th March, 1654. 28th ditto, 18th Aprill, primo Maye, and seacond July, and agayne from Archangell the 8th August, and fiveth September last, I did in them narrate what to that tyme had occurred; but some particulers not written of in those letters, I thinke, is not impertinent here to give your highnesse recognizance of them.
I was demanded by the chancellor of the embassy office at Mosco, Almaze Iuanuich, why your highnesse letter to the emperor was not sealed with our commonwealth's great seale; to which I answered, that it was not your highnesse custome, in your missives to princes, to seale your letters with any other then is yours to the emperor. That the commonwealth's great seale is only used in publike contracts with forreyne princes and republicks, or such like; and on letters patents, and such writings made within the commonwealth; whereunto the lord chancellor did set his firme.
The emperor is now in the 26th yeere of his age: he is of a just stature, somewhat grosse of bodye, browne haire, and of a good complection, rather inclining to alacrity then saturne; and sayed it is, that once hee was of a good naturall disposition, but corrupted by his education (Borris Iuanuich Morosone, that is now his brother-in-law (they have married two sisters) was his tutor) and now much given to avarice, cruelty, self-willfullnesse, and esteeming much more of himselfe then is in him.
The emperatrice is daughter to Ellia Danelleuich Milostansko, a man of a base and meane heart, and soe are his conditions; averse to strangers, and in particular to Englishe. His wyse is a crasty and understanding woman, whoe hath great power and credit with the emperor, and her voice in the present government of the empire, of which shee maketh good use for her owne ends and interest.
That majesty hath on only sonne, that was boren in December, 1653; two daughters, the youngest boren in January last. Hee hath three sisters, all unmarried; the eldest was promised to duke Wolmer of Denmarke, by the emperor Michaell Phedorovich, her father; and all things being concluded for that marridge, the prince went to that court for the effecting of it; at which tyme queen Christian of Sweden (and that crowne) not willing to have that match concluded, commanded her resident, then at the Rushe court, to hinder it, if possibly hee could; which hee did, by privately assuring some noblemen, Russes, that that prince was a spurious borren. Soe, to avoyd the effecting of that marriage, the noblesand clergy tooke pretext, that they would have Wolmer to turne to the Greeke faith (it was agreed and concluded, 'twixt the emperor and Denmarke, that duke Wolmer and his people might keepe theire owne religion, and the princesse her's) which hee would not doe. Wherefor the emperor, persisting to keepe his promise of what was agreed on, was cause (as it is sayed) that both hee and the emperatrice were by theire clergy and nobles made awaye with by poyson; and after theire deaths the Denmarke prince was for some tyme kept prisoner; but in the end sett at liberty, and permitted to departe for his owne country. It is now sayed, that that princesse shall marry a Tarter prince turned to the Ruffe religion, whoe at present is at the emperor's court, and entertayned by him.
The present patriarch of Russia is of yeeres about fivety five, a boores sonne, of little or no litterature (an enimye to strangers) notwithstanding hee hath past by all inferiour dignityes of that church, and had the patriarchshipp by lott; but before hee would accept of it, and bee consecrated, hee had the emperor to sweare not to contradict him in any thing; soe that that man maye truly saye, that as well out of his church, as in it, hee hath more authority then his majesty; as maye bee judged by on example of many, that could bee related; for whereas the emperor and his councell of state had given a sentence in a civile cause betwixt partys, the patriarch of himselfe did revert it, and gave another clean contrary (and sayed, against justice) which held.
The emperor is altogether governed by the sayed patriarch, Borris Iuanuich, Ellia Daneliuich, and his wyse, none have his majesty's eare but they, whoe give him to understand what they list, and hee knoweth nothing of importance but what comes from them, and what they please to let him know. These three men are generaly hated by the generalty of the people of all conditions; and by whome much evill is spoken of them. It is sayed, that the cheeffe favourite and councellor the patriarch hath is a fryer, Nervinancier; and many saye, his holynesse is to famillier with the emperatrice.
His majesty hath large and vast dominions, and but a few people to inhabitt them, in respect of theire wydnesse; and those of the northerne partes not industrious. If this country were peopled as England is, and they soe industrious as the Englishe are, where the emperor hath a doller revenue, he would have five.
Not soe few as a million of people dyed last yeere at Mosco and those partes that were then infected with plague. At Archangell and five hundred myle within land was noe infection at all. Mosco and those places infested last yeere have bine free this; but at Cazan, Astracan, and those quarters, as farre as the Caspian Sea, have this yeere as great a mortality, as Mosco and those partes of the country had the last.
The last yeere, at my arrivall to Mosco, I was vizited by collonells Buttler and Gibson (I supose both of them well knowen to your highnesse) whoe were very civile towards mee, as your highnesse servant. Lastly, a Scotchman, and the other two, are the three cheesse collonels, of strangers, that the emperor hath. The two last attend on his majesty's persone with theire regiments of fiveteen hundred men each of them; and Gibson is much in his esteeme and favour.
When I had translated into Englishe the emperor's answers made by his chancellor of the embassy office Almaze Juaniuich, to such writings as I had given him concerning the company of Russia merchants affayres, and fownd (with other omissions) no declaration, whether they might traffique any further into the country then Archangell, as other strangers doe. I sent to the chancellor, to know his majestey's intention in that particuler; and had for answer, that I could then no other then what was given mee; but hee would write to the emperor about it, and I should have his farther resolution before my departure to Archangell, which I have not had.
Before my departure to Archangell, I called John Hebden, Englishe merchant (hee was interpreter betwixt the emperor, his chancellor, and mee) to account for omitting the words highnesse, and lord, when I spoke and writt of your highnesse; and did it in that manner, as if I had bine certayne of his willfull omission of those words; but with oaths hee assevered to have used them both in his speech and writing; and that the leaving them out proceeds imediately from the emperor himselfe and the chancellor.
Herewith I present your highnesse a list of goods exported this last mart from Archangell, with some other particulars inserted in it, all calculated as exactly as I could then have it; only by better information after I was ascertained, that neere two millions of dollars effectif was brought by shipping to that place this yeere, and above two hundred thousand dollars more to Mosco, that was sent over land by Riga and the Narva, all by Dutch merchants.
Whilst I was at Archangell, wee ha dnoe information of the emperor's progresse in his warrs against the Pole, but what I had in a letter from mr. John de Rodes, the crowne of Sweden's commissary resident at Mosco, which I give your highnesse in a paper herewith. Before my departure from Mosco, I had sent mee by the chancellor Almaze, in the emperor's name, a present of two timbes of sable skines, which are at your highnesse disposall.
Now that I have not acted in my employment what maye have bine by your highnesse expected, I humbly beseech you it maye not bee imputed to mee of negligence or want of due devotion to serve your highnesse, but rather to my imbecile and weeke capacitye; and therefore all defects that may have occurred, I beg and hope for your highnesse benigne indulture.
|Of the above mentioned goods there maye bee for the emperor's proper account||150000|
|His customes at Archangell of strangers and Russes||30000|
|The custome within land to his majesty, for goods carryed from Archangell||20000|
His imperiall majesty of the Greater and Leffer Russia, after his staye neere five weeks under a little towne, called Sleix, gave order to on of his generalls, to advance with his armey towards Berisow, and to take his waye directly to Minsky; that his majestie, with the gros of his armey, would follow him. Sayed generall arriving before Berifow, fownd a little incounter of the enimye, that caused his retrait bake to Minsky. The generall being retorned to that place, fownd the enimye there 4000 strong, whoe received him in such manner, as constrained him to retire; but in his retrait, finding great succors coming to his ayed, hee retorned agen upon the enimye, and assaulted him on bothe sydes, that forced him to flye, and retire to a wood near hand, and by that means with facillity the generall obtayned Minsky. His imperial majesty being alsoe arrived to sayed towne, gave his orders to two generalls to advance towards Vilna, where the enimye was somewhat strong, and at the commenceing of a fight there, made good resistance; but his imperial majestie giving presently his commands for all the other bodeys of his armeys, that were thereabouts, to come to the ayed of the first there arrived, as they did, the battle was hot, soe that many of his syde remayned dead in the place. But a Cosacke coll. deceived the enimye, by throwghing himselfe with his people upon the Poles bagage, which laye betwixt the Russes and the cittye; by which means the Poles imagining the emperor to have gayned the victory (whoe had then the worst) they retired in confusion towards the cittye, where they and his imperial majestie's people entred pelmel togeather, massacred, and putt all the Poles, men, woamen, and children, to the sworde, that were there fownd; soe the emperor's party hath had a great victory. Duke Roginell with a few people is gone towards Versovia. Generall Daubeskey, whoe had besieged the citty Bychew, having there found more resistance then hee imagined, and the place impregnable, gave it over, and is gone towards Sleix. Generall Chimchlinzhi is sayed to bee gone towards Leopolis.
The Poles are still at theire diet at Versovia, and have sent a great embassye to Sweaden, where the embassador, monsieur Lestinky, great treasurer and generall of the Greater Poland, arrived the vi. of June, and had presently audience of the king, and was by his majesty well received; but being hee was resolved to embarke by sea the 3d of July towards Stetin, his majestye appointed a great shipp of warre to take in the sayed embassador and his retenue, with order to follow him to Stetin. Notwithstanding the reception of the embassador, the king of Sweden's armey assembled in Livonia, under the conduct of earle Lewenhaupt, hath sett on the citty Dunebourg, and having put to flight 6000 men, that came to succour it, tooke the citty by composition; and forthwith all marcht directly towards Lituania: the aforesayed citty was a little before besieged by the Ruffes, whoe found themselves to weake to take it, gave over their interprise.
H. Cromwell, major general of the army in Ireland, to secretary Thurloe.
Here hath little happened since my laste worthy of your knowledge, save our resolutiones in the business of reducement, uppon which after much consideration hade wee are come to a finalle conclusion, and are nowe takeinge care to putt it in execution, haveinge a regard to publique safety. I ame affraide wee cannot proceed soe effectually as weer desireable, untill our forces be returned frome Englande, without runninge some kinde of hazarde, which is to be avoided. The persons pitched upon are collonel Axtell's regiment, collonel Hubber's, collonel Clerke's regiment of foote; lieut. generall Ludlowe's, sir Charles Coote's regiment of horse, and Ingoldesbye's of dragoones; and their beinge some deserveinge persons in each of the disbanded regiments, whoe are thought fitt to be continued, we have made way for them by reduceinge the like number of those that we intende to continue out of the loose companyes, and such out of the standeing regiments as are thought less deserveinge. Collonel Clerke and collonel Ingoldesby will have each of them a regiment new moulded out of the remaineinge part of the loose companyes.
The satisfaction held forthe to those that nowe disbande is soe advantagious, that it
hathe made more men greedy of sittinge downe uppon the termes offered them to continue
their employments; foe that I doubt not, but the business will be done without difficulty or
danger. I ame sure the reducement hath been carried soe impartially, that none cane say
they are injured. All heer are deeply affected with the reproofe upon our forces in the
West Indies. What the will of the Lord is in it is alone knowne to himselfe; but
surely we may knowe, if the Lord sees it fitt to humble us, that we may be the fitter to
receive his good pleasure, which I ame not without hopes, but that it will be good in the
issue. I ame not willinge to take up more of your time. I ame,
Sir, your humble servant,
Mr. Thomas Harrison to secretary Thurloe.
Much honoured in the Lord,
Next to the presumption of the enclosed to his highnesse, is this of the cover to a person of so much and soe weighty businesse. Yet truly, sir, I dare not suffer a sinfull modesty any longer to suppresse and stiffle that testimony, which I owe unto in truth, and to the grace of our mercifull God towards us.
Sir, I am perswaded there was much good worke done by the way, as my lord came along, through my lord's prudent and pious deportment; besides, that people do not only love those who owne them and shew kindnesse to them, but those also (and it may be those most of all) whome they themselves are pleased once to owne and to expresse a respect unto, which was done abundantly towards his highnesse in my lord in every place where we rested. And since our landing (which the good hand of the lord performed very tenderly for us) I am assured, that my lord came over upon the wings of faith and prayer, to put honour upon the publique worship of God, and life into his people, and a checke upon some irregular spirits, whome I rather desire to serve in love and pitty, then to censure. The people flocke abundantly to the word, and will, I hope, flow in to the Lord, and to his goodnesse: hope, and joy, and satisfaction, may be read in most faces; they alone looke fowre, who had swallowed up this good land, not only in expectation, but actuall possession, and some of those cannot conceale their fretting at their feare or sence of a disappointment. The nation lyes like clay upon the wheele, ready to receive what forme authority shall please to give it. And truly, sir, that Christian spiritt of government, wherewith I thinke I see my lord evidently clothed, and that hopefull disposition which is soe universally visible in the people, encourage me to beleive, that the Lord is returning and repenting concerning his servants, and that he is resolved forthwith to make them glad according to the dayes wherein he hath afflicted them, and the years wherein they have seene evil.
Extraict d'une lettre de Zurich, du 16/26 Aoûst, 1655.
A Ussy tost que monsieur P. a eu ses lettres & la nouvelle instruction, qui fut le 10, j'ay tost insinué a monsieur le bourgem. Wafer, sur quoy on a convocqué le conseil secret; ou le sentiment de sieur ambassadeur le protecteur fut proposé; & comme la conference feroit necessaire aussy tost, que le commissaire extraordinaire sera arrivé, on envoya aussy tost a Turin pour l'insinuer, & a Berne pour se preparer a la conference.
Tout a c'este heure la poste arrive de Turin. L'ambassadeur de France a faut la paix avec les nostres, comme il dit, que le feigneur protecteur l'avoit demandé au roy; mais une paix fort prejudiciable aux nostres, aux interessés, paix extorquée. Nos ambassadeurs ne l'ont pas signée; ce qui me plait, car on n'en euteu point d'honneur, &c. S. A. le seigneur protecteur n'a pas esté respecté en pas un des articles, non en la restitution, qui est partiale, non en la reparation, qui est nulle, non en la justice contre les meurtriers detenue en injustice, non en la garantié & asseurance pour l'avenir, ou ils feront tousjours exposés a la rage des loups.
L'ambassadeur de France dit aux nostres a Turin, qu'il desireroit leur tesmoigner au possible; mais puis que S. M. estoit requise de S. A. le protecteur, des estats de Hollande, &c. il les prioit a ne persister en cela en la signature, comme le peuple le vouloit.
A letter of mr. H. Daubne.
The letters that I have lately written to you from this place are so many, that I dare not goe about to number them, for feare least whilst I goe about to justify my own care, duty, and diligence to serve you, I may seem to accuse you of some neglect of your poore friend, in not returning me one word of answer to any. I ame sure, I have let pass no opportunity, that presented itself by sea, to send you letters, and duplicats, of the greatest importance, which I presume could not fayle coming to your hands, if the shipps did not founder in the sea. For those letters, that I have sent over-land, I cannot take uppon me the same confidence, that being a very long, and casuall passage, especially now that so much suspicion rests uppon all our nation, and not having secure correspondents at Madrid, St. Sebastian, and Bordeaux, which are necessary to send my letters forwards. In effect, I have in all my former letters acquainted you with the terrour, and flight, that all our countrymen have been putt to heer, by reason of the great broyle, that has been made uppon this coast, by generall Blake's coming hither with his fleet, and remayning so long heer; who is presumed by many arguments, and some discoverys that have been made by letters from the very fleet, as I have informed you formerly, to stay for the richest galeons, that have come from the Indys thees many yeers; a prize truly worth his catching; but wee hope that he will fall short of his ayme, for though the king and all his counselle have been all this while lull'd asleep, in a confidence and security of the English friendshipp, yet the people heerabouts have in good time been awakened, and have freely, at theyr own charge, with the duke of Medina Celi his great diligence and assistance (who stayd in this towne a fortnight on purpose about it) fett forth an armada, of eight and twenty men of warr, and six fiershipps, wherof some have undertaken with theyr lives to fasten uppon generall Blake's own shipp, and the rest, wee are confident, will so whipp the coats of our bolde countrymen, that they shall be soon taught, what it is, to watch for galeons: nor doe they mean to deale with our English, as the Hollanders did, disputing it onely with them at guerre galena, as they call it, but to come presently bord and bord, and decide the busyness with pistoll and sword. There are not less then eight thousand men abord of the Spanish fleet, and a very great part of them, men of extraordinary quality, as gentlemen of this country, and many reform'd officers from Madrid, with divers of the country trayn'd-bands, and, amongst them, no less then six companys of houskeepers of this towne. In fine, never better flesh went abord of any fleet out of Spayn: but it is confest, that theyr shipps are not alltogether so warlike as the English, for theyr fleet consists of theyr own loggerheaded galeons, to the number of fowrteen of them, which carry about forty brass gunnes each; the rest are some slight French and Dunkirke frigats, sitter to runn away, then make a fight, and some other Hamborough, Holland, and Genoa trading shipps, that they could pick up to serve them. The French and Holland captayns would by no means be perswaded to accept the service themselves, though are very well contented to take a good freight for theyr shipps. Our olde freind, capt. Peter Toms of Hamborough, for all he was so forward to offer himself at first, yet has uppon second thoughts, having a considerable estate to loose at home, deserted the service: but his shipp and men are gon, as allso the young captayn, his nephew (who it seems has no such hold of Hamborough, or that not of him) is with his shipp and men likewise, by his unkle's perswasions, ingaged in the service; and for all they are Lutheranes, wee have as much confidence in them, as any others, for wee knowe they are thorough enemys to our countrymen. This fleet has been gone out now at least tenn days, under the command of don Pablos de Contreras, whose pretenses onely are to guard theyr galleons home, and so carry very fayre orders, to vayle bonnet to the English, and give them the first salute; which if the English generall does not answer with equall courtesy, it will manisestly growe to a quarrell amongst them; which if it doe, I hope will be never the wors for us poore cavaleers heer; for they beginn allready to looke uppon us better, and to repent theyr so much former complyance with that party, which they see now goes about to ruin them; and some say, if it growe to a warr, wee shall have the court at Cullen remove theyr quarters shortly to Madrid. The Spanish fleet gceing out in the evening, and shaping theyr cours more southwards, with a strong levant overshott the English fleet, which at that time lay within fowre or five leagues to the northward of this port; and as yet they have not mett one with another. The Spanish armada lys out uppon the coast of Portugall about the capes, and the English heer uppon this coast betwixt this and that about Aymonte; which makes the Spanyards say, that generall Blake plays least in sight, for feare of theyr armada, and that they came hither to steale, rather then fight; but it is the opinion of others, and more probable, that his orders are as yet defective, and so waytes to have 'em compleated from England, being unwilling to meet 'em, till he knowes what to doe with 'em: for it is reported, he should say, he would not feare to fight 'em with half his fleet. Others there are of opinion, that there is no intention at all of a breach between the nations; but of this neyther you there, nor wee heer, can be long kept in ignorance. One of the Spanish fleet, that spent hir top-mast, came in heer the other day, and tells us, that coming hither, he was taken abord of generall Blake, who used them very kindely, askeing them some questions concerning theyr armada, and so dismist them; as likewise don Pablos had done before to a catch of the English generall's. This shipp being now repayr'd, is speedyly to goe out agayn, with fowre or five men of warr more, to recruit and reinforce theyr fleet: for it is generally beleev'd heer, that the English expect more forces to come to 'em, and till then, will not advance towards them. It is all mens wonder and astonishment heer, that wee have no news all this while from the Indys. By that it is concluded of all hands, that the English have made some fowle disturbance there; and so probably have hindered the galleons from coming forth, which is all our hopes heer; for otherwise 'tis to be feared, that they are fallen allready into the hands of the English fleet, that lys there. What is done in those parts, I believe you will have sooner notice in England, then wee shall have heer. What news does occur heerabouts, you shall be sure to have from me by all opportunitys; and I ame sure you are so good a freind to Spayn, especially in this particular, that you will be much pleased to heare of all our good successes heer, which I shall not fayle to give you, uppon all occasions; but I pray you, leave me not in so uncomfortable a condition in the mean time, as not to heare constantly from you, how you and all my poore freinds doe there. I have written so often to you, concerning all my wants and desiers, that I am asham'd to make any repetition. So for all that I refer my self to those former letters, and to your own goodness for my better accommodation in all particulars. This letter goes by a shipp of Holland, that toucheth in England, and putts some more of our flying merchants ashore there. By the same means, if our English trade be obstructed, you may please to conveigh all your letters and commands to,
Sir, your most obedient,
faythfull and affectionate servant,
Order of the states general.
There was read in the assembly a certain memorandum from the lord embassador of Spain, containing complaints, that one William James, an English pirate, had taken upon the coast of Caraxas, in the West Indies, a certain ship called the St. Pieter, loaden with seven or eight thousand hides, belonging to the subjects of the king of Spain; and had brought the same into the island of Curacao, belonging under the jurisdiction of the West India company of these countries; which said pirate is said to be arrived lately at Amsterdam, in a ship, which he had freighted, and in which he had laden 1800 hides, having sent the rest to other places to be sold. Wherefore the said embassador doth desire, that such order may be taken, that the said pirate may be seized upon and secured with all such goods, by order of the admiralty of Amsterdam, that so the subjects of the said king may not lose all their goods. Whereupon being debated, it is resolved, that a copy of the said memorandum be sent to the admiralty of Amsterdam; and that they be desired to take such order, to the end the said William James may be seized upon, and his ship and goods secured, and withall proceeded against according to law. Besides, that a copy of the said memorandum be likewise sent to the governors and officers of the West India company, that they do not admit into their harbours such prizes and plundered goods taken from the subjects of the king of Spain and other allies of this state.
General Blake to the protector.
May it please your highnes,
Your commands of the 30th July I received by the Assurance frigot the 13th instant, with the intelligence of a great fleet prepared to come out of Cadiz and theire designe from your secretary, which in part wee have found to bee true, as I shall give your highnes an accompt.
The 6th instant I received a letter from captaine Smith, (which comes herewith) whereuppon wee stood away for the coast of Barbary, as far as Mamora, within 3 leagues; but
having noe newes of the fleet there, wee made towards the bay of Cadiz, sending two frigots before to gaine intelligence, who returned to us the 12th instant, with this, that the fleet
sayled from thence seaven dayes before, and were plying off Cape Vincent's, to which place
wee hastened; and the 15th in the morning espyed them to the windward of us, wee being then off the bay of Lagos, whither wee desired to goe for water; but they beareing upp
uppon us, with intent (as wee thought) to fight us, I called a councell of warre, which unanimousely resolved to ingage the first opportunity, being moved thereunto with an eagre
desire wee had to see some end of our tedious expectation, and to prevent that accession of
strength mentioned in the secretarye's intelligence (wherof wee likewise had notice from
other hands) and alsoe out of a despayre of being able to keepe the sea many dayes longer
for want of liquor. But the Spanish fleet furthwith tackt and stood the other way, and
wee after them all that night. In the morning wee were fayre by them; but there being
little wind (not enough to worke our shipps) and a great sea, soe that wee could not make
use of our lower tire, and alsoe a thicke fogg, wee did nothing that day (theyre fleet being
then thirty one in all.) The next day wee continued in the same resolution, and sent some
frigats a head to gaine the wind, and to ingage them; but the evening approaching, and
a great part of our fleete farre a-sterne, wee thought it best to desist for that tyme. These
checques of providence did put us uppon second thoughts, and a strict review of the instructions, which I had received; the which being all perused and compared together at a
councell of warre, wee could not find in them any authority given unto us to attacke
this party, but rather the contrary; and wee had reason also to conceive, it was not the
intention of your highnes, that wee should bee the first breakers of the peace, seeing
your highnes having notice of the coming fourth of the Spanish fleet, did not give us
any new direction at all tuching the same in your last order of the 30th of July. Uppon
these grounds wee receded from our first resolution; and tooke into consideration the state
of our fleet, which wee found in all things to bee extremely defective, but more particularly in want of liquor; some of the shipps having not beuverage for above fower dayes,
and the whole not able to make above eight, and that at short allowance; and noe small
part both of our beuverage and water stinking. Hereupon it was debated amongst us,
whether wee should returne to the bay of Lagos, or goe to Lisbona for supply, there being
noe other place but those two. To goe to Lagos, it was not held good, both because all
that country could not afford us one pipe of beuverage wine, and to gett water there
very difficult, and, uppon the least wind from the south or east, allmost impossible, and
the place a dangerous road for such a fleet to anchor in; which wee must have done for
getting a quantity of water; beside many other inconveniencyes. It was therefore resolved, that wee should goe to Lisbona. Nevertheles wee kept in fight of them two
dayes after, and on the 22d instant wee lay a great part of the day with our sayles hayled
upp, untill they were very neare us; but perceiving they had noe intention to engage
us, nor any commission to that purpose, as wee thought, and also understood by a small
frigat of theyres of twenty fower gunnes, the captaine whereof coming accidentally amongst
us, I comanded aboard, who told us the same; and withall that they knew nothing of
the expected fleet at all, but only that they were bound to attend the coming of the same.
Hereuppon our liquor growing lesse, wee stood away for Lisbona, where wee arrived on
the 24th instant, and anchored in the road of Castcayes; and to my very great griefe I
understood, that the Taunton frigat was gone two dayes before, which I had sent with
mr. Maynard, according to your highnes comands, supposeing to meet her there, or by
the way; to which end wee spread the seas what wee could, and alsoe sent two frigats before, to looke after her; and have likewise sent the Diamond frigat to ply betweene the
cape Vincent and the bay of Lagos, to wayt for him, and for advice out of England.
Here wee find, that mr. Maynard was dismist without any answeare but this, that the
king would send it by a minister of his owne. How these passages of providence will bee
lookt uppon, or what construction our carriage in this buisines may receive, I know not,
(although it hath bin with all integrity of heart) but this wee know, that our condition
is darke and sadd, and (without especiall mercy) like to bee very miserable; our shipps
extreme fowle, winter drawing on, our victualls expiring, all stores fayling, our men
falling sicke, thorough the badnes of drinke, and eating theyre victualls boyled in salt water
for two moneths space; the coming of a supply uncertaine (wee received not one word
from the commissioners of the admiralty and navy by the last) and though it come tymely,
yet if beere come not with it, wee shall bee undone that way. We have noe place or
friend, our recruits here slow, and our marriners (which I most apprehend) apt to fall
into discontents, thorough theyre long keeping abroad. Our only comfort is, that wee
have a God to leane uppon, although wee walke in darknes, and see noe light. I shall
not trouble your highnes with any complaints of my selfe, of the indisposition of my
body, or troubles of my mind; my many infirmityes will one day, I doubt not, sufficiently
plead for mee or against mee. soe that I may bee free of soe great a burthen, consolating
my selfe in the meane tyme in the Lord, and in the firme purpose of my heart with all
faythfullnes and sincerity to discharge the trust, while reposed in mee. As soone as the
Taunton comes (which I continually expect) I shall dispatch mr. Maynard immediatly;
and as soone as wee have gott a sufficient proportion of liquor (which I hope may bee in
five or six dayes) wee intend (God willing) to sayle to the fouthward cape, and to spend
some tyme thereabouts, soe long as wee can possibly lengthen out our victualls, foe that
wee may bee able to gett home, in case the victualling shipps doe not come in tyme;
which wee shall then bee forced to doe, or must perish in the sea. I have no more at
present to trouble your highnes with (this allready being I feare too much) but shall ever
Aboard the George, in Castcayes road,
Mr. Thomas Chamberlaine to secretary Thurloe.
I was yesterday to have wayted on your honour by order of my lord mayor, to acquaint you, there would be twenty thousand crownes payed this faire at Lion, but as yet have not the name of the person, whome your honour will intrust to receive it, which is a great hinderance to the worke. I hadd likewise given order, to draw upon me as much more; but in regard of a declaration made by the French king, my freinds, being protestants, durst not undertake it, but advised me to give order to the freinds of Amsterdam to give the commission; but the payements being the next moneth, it will be very short tyme, and inconvenient; but the next payements, which will be 3 moneths after it, may be done with ease and more advantage; and if there be occasion of mony sooner, they may draw upon the next faire of Lion from Basell, or Geneva, which will be the surest, and take off all suspicion; and not having the conveniency to speake with your honour, I went to the honourable colonel Sidnam, and acquinted him with the same, and delivered him an abstract of the newes from Geneva, and a copy of the king's letter; and wherein further I may be serviceable, you shall find me to be
most humble servant,
Mr. Peter Pett to secretary Thurloe.
I have been much importuned by some honest men, that I employ'd (according to his highnes order) in making search in all vessells in the river of Medway and Thames, for the lord Wilmott and others, to give an allowance to them for the same; which because it cannot be done, unles you please to signifie his highnes pleasure therein, I humbly desire therefore to be your remembrancer, resting
Your honour's humble servant,
Mr. Longland, agent at Leghorn, to secretary Thurloe.
This town is ful of newes of the beating of our fleet in the West Indyes, but by yours of the 19th July, I se ther was no newes then in Ingland of it. The advys is, that, our fleet having possest themselves of St. Domingo (having very good intelligence ther that by order from Spayn the Spanish fleet had landed al theyr plate, layd up theyr ships for next year) they went directly thence for Cartagena, wher making several assaults, they wer beaten off with the los of 3000 men, and wer again retyred to St. Domingo. This advys coms from Cales, wher is arryvd a smale ship from Havanna. In regard 'tis this week so generally advysd from Holland, that our fleet has received a repulse, I am very fearful that this relation is true; which maks me giv you the particulers of what I hear. I hope God wil giv our men harts and courage to turn again, and posses themselves of the place.
The Spanish fleet lyes stil at Porto Spetie, without landing theyr men, or doing any thing. 'Tis sayd, they expect a larger suply from Naples of 1500 horse, and 4000 foote, which by letters thence myht depart in 6 dayes. The most knowing men here believ thes Napollitan forces will affourd Millan no more help, but meerly theyr countenance and reputation of theyr presence so nere them, but that they ar al desynd for Cattalonia, to stop the torrent of the French in thos parts, lest Barsalona fal again into theyr hands. In conclusion the Spaniard has need of thes forces in so many places, that I think they ar at a stand wher to land them.
The reports of the siege of Pavia is various. Two dayes since here was advys it could not hold out 14 dayes. This day 'tis reported, the Spanish general is redy to tak the field with 14000 foot, and 4000 horse, to fal upon the French quarters. Such an army, if they wer good soldiers, myht do much. This week is arryved an Inglish ship from Allicant, whence 'tis advysd, that general Blak's fleet was latly sien nere Cales to bi at lest 70 sail, which maks som imagin hi may hav taken the plate-fliet. A Dutchman wryts, hi has cald the Turks of Argier to his succour. Thes Duch ar our good frends still.
'Tis advysd from Rom, that ther ar great differences betwixt the pope and Mazarin for the favours conferd by the pope upon cardinal Rez and the prince of Condé's agent. 'Tis most certain, that the pope labours with al his power to bring about a treaty of peace this winter betwixt France and Spayn, that both (and al other princes concerned with them) may send plenypotentiarys to Rom; the rather becaus here is in Itally a terrible fear, that the Sweads army maks but a pretence upon Polland, theyr mayn desyn being for Germany. I writ you in my last, that doctor Bayly is urgent with me for more mony. Pray affourd me your positiv order, how far I shal credit him. Althoh I am demanded of him, and writ to by several, yet I own him not, but hav denyed him even to your brother Lydcot; yet I must tel you plainly, the papists from al quarters know he is employd by you, and accordingly report of him.
Here is in town, passing towards Rom, an Irish collonel, with the duk of York's pas, which reports him the son of an earl, who was one of the generals in Ireland to the late king. 'Tis a kynd of a begging pas, and such use he maks of it, having sent a priest amongst our nation, to gather theyr benevollence, which to theyr sham som of them ar too forward to affourd. Here is com from Spayn lykwys one collonel Welden, a Kentish gentleman, going towards Millan. The imprisonment of the royal party maks a great nois here in Itally.
When generall Blak cam into thes seas to tak French, I thoht by that means to salv my
losses sustained by them, which made me by your hands to petition his hyhnes for my
reparation out of thos pryzes general Blak should tak from them; but I se that way is not
fesible for example sak, left others should expect the lyk. I assure you, I should not hav
cryed rost meat; however, I humbly giv you thanks for your redines to help me in any
other way, but to fynd out such another conveniency for reparation of my losses, is not
in my capacity, but I shall willingly embrace such a way, as you shal direct me unto. I
hope his hyhnes horses ar wel arryved before this. It would be my great content, to
hear they wer to his good lyking; which pray impart unto,
Leghorn, August 27, 1655. [N. S.]
Just now is com a letter hether out of the French army befor Pavia, dated the 21 instant, with advys, that the French had that day stormd al the works, and taken them with the los of 3 or 400 men, and wer now under the town wals. The Spanyards fortyfy another town betwixt that and Millan, to keep the French off that citty as long as they can.
A letter of intelligence.
Upon my departure from London, I told your honour, that I should have an occasion to goe to Francfort in Germany; and soe upon my journey passing through Ceulen upon a saturday by the way intered into a bookseller's shopp to looke for some boocks, where I met some English fellowes talking soe licenciously and basly of his highnes the lord protector, and saying many false things of the state of Englandes affaire, that I took the opportunity to speake something against there discourse, soe much as in the presence of some Germains persons of honor they were convinced of falsewood; but at last they simulated to be my friends, and desired me to goe along with them the next day, being on a sunday, for to see some curiositys, and in the hower apointed wee met in a church, and afterwards they carryed mee into a house, where they said there were fine pictures, where being came an ancient man, who began to talke of k. C. and of England, and very simply and maliciously of my lord protector; whereupon I gave no answer, but against his expectation spake more moderately, knoing not wat end these sayings had to. He asked me, wether I was not a right Frenchman, though I was living under soe many kinds of tyrands in England, and wether, if it was in my power, I would not doe any service to the right king. I answered him, that he knew, that being a foreigner, and of no estate in England, I was not able to doe him any good, but that I would endeavour to serve him, and imploye myselfe as a good Christian for another true Christian; but hee pressing mee, continued saying, that the good king had many friends and servants in England, but that it was imposible for him to intrust them with special orders concerning his businesses, because the same orders had been many times intercepted by the way. Then asked hee mee, wether I would for the king's service carry some commisions to England. I told him, that I would not meddle myselfe with any businesses, nee pro nec contra, because I knew my inhability in doing him any good; but that if he would intrust me with the said commissions, I would deliver them: and upon his request having told him my name, he said thou art then the same physician, who dedicating a boock to thine protector, have calomniously written agains the king; and thou art alsoe the same, whose departure is signified unto me from some parts; and immediately shewed me a letter, saying, that on such a time such a one was to goe from England beyond sea, having a passe dated on such a day from the councill; and it was very like, that the same was going for a spye, because he had great interest with Thurloe the secretary, to whom he had discovered some Irishmen dessein, who had great things in hand for the king's service; and continuing, said, that as for him, he would not doe any thing against mee, but that there were many officious persons to the king ready to hurt mee, if I should not withdraw very shortly; and soe went away, hearing no answer from mee. Then enquiring who was that auncient man, it was told me, that he was one mr. Nicholas, secretary to k. C. I thinking that there was not security for mee, I departed the next day from thence for Aken, where the baths are. I humbly thought fit to give your honor notice of the premices. I directed my letter to Brusselles for mr. Bostock of London, and from Aken I went to Spa; then did I write again to your honor, which letter I hope your honor hath received; but since the sending of the same mr. Manly being at Spa, hath told the rhingrave, governor of Maestrich, that we departed together from Dover for Flanders, and that I hade been at Ceulen; whereupon the said rhinegrave did send for mee, and questioned mee very much, wether I was not my lord protector's spie, giving him notice of things that I had seen and heard by the way; and having given him satisfaction upon his questions, I told him that I marveilled much, who had given him such an impression. Then ceased he, asking pardon, and saying, that it was onely by curiosity, he having no more to say, in as much as my lord protector and he were in peace, and soe departed civilly from me; and taking leave from him, I went from Spa to Brusselle for my returning to England, and enquired wether my said former letter concerning the premices was received there in its time, and sent to England; but was told me, that they had not received such a letter. Then I conceive, that the said letter hath been intercepted by the way, having not been directed to its addresse.
From the city of Louvain to Antwerpe round about Brussell, I have found upon the way more then thirty thousand countrymen all armed, who having received command from the archiduc to meet at Brussell under the comte Bruny. Many others doe come at all howrs, in as much that within 15 days, they being in a huge number shall joingn the archiduc, being now about the city of Monts, much pressed by the French king two miles of.
It is much talk, that the king of Spain will sell the duché of Limbourg to the state generall of the Loe Countrey, which thing shall put Maestrick and many other places in security for the said state. Some beleeve, that they shall make a permutation in this manner, that the state shall give to the said king these places which they hold, and have in hand of the duche of Gueldria for the duché of Limbourg.
Those that I have seen at Spa were mr. D'Opdam amiral of Holland, baron Brederode, the rhinegrave, comte Machau, governor of Rees, all for the states generall. Marquis St. Estienne, lieutenant of prince Condé, the duc Darschot, comte Grobendour, governor of Limbourg, with their ladyes, and my lord Duns, with many other of lower condition and sexe.
A paper concerning major Robert Walters.
I Doe beleeve, that aboute June . . . 54, major Robert Walters was very acctive in contryving and prosecuteinge the late insurrection (espicially) in Yorkshire, from whence the said Walters came up to London severall tymes in company of one Nicholas Armorer, who is cup-bearer to the princess off Orange.
And in the tyme of their being at London, every three or fower days removed lodgings (except at a chamber in the Temple, whear the said Armorer was bedfellow with colonell Grey) whear I have seen severall gentlemen, as sir Thomas Armstronge, the lord Byron, one Read, and divers others I knew nott; and att that tyme of his lodginge there, mr. Nicho. Bethell, (who I thinke lives at or near Pluckley in Kent) brought me 100 l. in gold from the said Walters, to deliver to the said Armorer, which I did.
Some tyme affter Walters borrowed ten pound of mee, to be repaid mee by sir Ri. Mauleverer of Allerston, in Yorkshire; butt faylinge aboute 5 weeks affter goeing to Edminton, the said Walters overtooke mee accidentally, and at the next inn repaid mee. I perceav'd hee had greate store of money and gold by him, and was armed with a har quebusse and pistolls, and earnestly intreated me, I would not take any notice, that I see him, for that noe body knew hee was at London, and how that hee came up in his showes.
After the rysinge, understanding that the said Walters was fled, I tooke some payns, and found him; and hee being at Gravesend to make his escape for Rotterdam in July last, hee tould mee severall passages of the laite rysing, viz.
2. I then asked him, if they should nott have risen sooner: hee sayd, hee had three severall tymes been countermanded by the councell after hee had absolutely apointed the days, and that the deputys, as hee called them, of the bishopric of Durham, Northumberland, and the north of Yorkshire, had been with him, and had given him an accompt of theyre readinesse, and that hee believed soe many countermands discouradg'd them soe far, that itt hindered soe generall a rysinge as would have been at first.
3. And that hee had a list of above 1500 gentlemen and others that engaidg'd in the counties above (of which the tenth apeared nott) which list hee tore in a wood near Barkway, when hee maid his escape from Lockyer.
4. And that when hee borrowed the 10 l. of mee hee went for Collen, and stayed theyre 4 dayes, and that the kinge gave him 30 peeces to bear his charges and commissions with which he ingaged the Yorkshire gentlemen,
Mr. S. Avery to secretary Thurloe.
I SHOUD take it for a great favour, if I might by a few lines from you by this bearer understand something of his highnes pleasure concerning the buisnes at Hambroh, and in Holland relating to the merchants adventurers, which I made bould particularly to mention in my last unto you, which was left by the bearer the laste weeke with mr. Fayrebanke.
Yesterday I receaved from our commissioners the resolution of the stats of Holland delivered them at the breaking up of theyr last assembly, whereof I thought it my duety to send you a coppy, togeather with a translation thereof in English, which you will find a poore empty thing, all our former ancient priviledges granted, and several times confirmed by the stats generall, being holden in suspence; wherof if his highnes please to shew his resentment unto the ambassadors, and to insist uppon it in the negotiation now on foot with the Dutch ambassadors, I beleeve they will be brought to a better understanding.
However, if his highnes please to make good what he hath graciously written to the
townes of Rotterdam and Dort, for their encouragement, which is to reduce all the trade
in the woollen manufactures of England to one of those townes, which we shall agree
with, that towne will mayntaine us in all our ancient grants and priviledges; and if it
shall be thought fitt to reduce the trade of Scotland also to our mart towne, which is now
in Zealand (who love us not, being wedded to the Orange partie) it would bee a great
obligation uppon that towne. All which I doe humbly submitt to your consideration;
London, August 17, 1655.