A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 4, Sept 1655 - May 1656. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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September (2 of 4)
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
V. xxx. p. 207.
In answer to yours of the 31st of August I will tell you, that the enclosed cypher is an amplification. I have formerly sent them; but you will have forgot to have added it to the foregoing cypher.
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With truth, you say, that here or on this side the water is now the theatre of affairs. Holland having discovered a kind of petition of the head officers savouring very much of a mutiny, (according to the relation here enclosed,) have in some sort opened their eyes; namely that in the militia, at least in the foreign nations, there was no great trust to be put; being so little satisfied. This and the like actions do seem to give to understand, that Holland are resolved to maintain liberty, but in some other things (as I have often complained to you) they go a quite contrary way; as by the alliance with court of Brandenburg and if the K. of Denmark had no fear and apprehension of protector, they had already made an alliance with Denmark not considering the principles and inclinations of Denmark and Brandenburgh, for an imaginary hope of lucre, and profit, they would ally with I know not whom. I am and do still remain of opinion, that they ought to hold liberty pro summo bono. And as for commerce, to live and suffer to live; otherwise, whosoever doth embrace too much, seldom thrives. Now it is clear, how ill they were grounded in their jealousy against Sweden for in the end all their equipage hath been but a bugbear, and a little earthquake, or rather money ill spent, for Sweden doth not nor can effect such great businesses. And although he should have all Poland, that is nothing, for England and Holland are more than able to ruin Sweden by sea; and Sweden must also follow the rule, live and suffer others to live; and if England with Holland would only declare themselves, then presently Denmark se tertium adjungeret: Hæc sunt palpabilia; but Zeland blinded through the passion of profit do not see that; and would rather put themselves into the power of prince of Orange and royallists than lose one penny of profit. Now being well assured, that Prussia, will not be in danger this winter, I do perceive also that that doth less torment them. And it is to be hoped, that they will look to themselves at home, which will be soon seen, namely, whether they will agree with count William or not. Metuo ut substent: but a few days will tell us. I am
17th Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
Your most humble servant.
The states general to the grand prince of Moscovy.
Most serene, most powerfull grand signor, czaar and great prince Alexei Mighailewitz, autocrator of the whole great and small Russia, of Moscow, Kiow, Wolodimira, Novogorod, czaar of Casan, czaar of Astracan, czaar of Siberia, lord of Plescouw, and grand prince of Smolensko, Tweer, Ingoria, Permia, Veatka, Bolgaria, lord and grand prince of Novagrada, of the lower country at Sernigow, Resan, Polotsko, Rostof, Jaroslaef, Belooseria, Udoria, Obdoria, Condinia, Witepski, Mestislof, and sovereign of the whole northern side, lord of the lands of Iverech, czaar of Cartalinski and Garessinski, of the lands Carbandinski, prince of the Sarkasses and Gorskes and of many other, easterly, westerly, and northerly lordships and provinces, hereditary lord and governor.
Your czarish majesty's messenger Ivan Amirof has delivered us on the 9th of this instant month of September your letter, written in your great empire in the year after the creation of the world 7163, on the 17th day of the month of June Russian style, whereby your czarish majesty desires, that we would send you 20000 musquets, at the price as they should cost here in the country. Which being put under deliberation, and considering more and more, the ancient friendship and correspondence, which has been constantly and is still cultivated and subsisting between your majesty's high predecessors of immortal memory, and your czarish majesty yourself, on the one side, and the state of these united provinces on the other side, we have found good, to write again hereby to your czarish majesty most friendly, that we have most heartily consented to this said request, altho' with our inconveniency, and therefore given liberty to your czarish majesty's messenger, not only to buy up in this country the said twenty thousand muskets, at such a reasonable price as he can best agree with the dealers in that commodity, but also to export the same, to your czarish majesty's czarish dominions, kingdoms, and provinces, free from all dutys, be it convoy or licent money, or any other imposts, which we have granted him only out of respect towards your czarish majesty, since the same has never been granted by us to any potentate in the world whatsoever, seeing that thereby our finances would be considerably lessened and weakned. We do not question but the same will be highly acceptable to your czarish majesty, and that you will conclude therefrom, that we wish nothing more heartily, than to contribute all that is possible and feasable to us, for the satisfaction of your czarish majesty, and what may any ways tend to the continuation, cultivation, and augmentation of friendship and a faithful correspondence between your czarish majesty and this state. As to the messenger, which your czarish majesty has sent to us, the same has been very welcome, as likewise all those shall be, whom your czarish majesty shall be pleased to send us. Assuring your majesty, that after a good reception, defraying, and treatment we have dispatched him in the speediest manner, according to your czarish majesty's request, without his being any ways detained. Wherewith we conclude, and offering ourselves friendly towards your czarish majesty, we pray the almighty God, most serene, most powerfull great lord, czar and prince, that he would be pleased to preserve your czarish majesty in constant health, prosperous reign, and desireable welfare. Done at the Hague in Holland the place of our residence on the 17th of September, in the year after the nativity of our redeemer and saviour Jesus Christ, 1655.
From Nieupoort, the Dutch embassador in England.
On tuesday last in the afternoon, word was sent me by the doorkeeper, that sir Charles Wolsely with colonell Jones (the lord Strickland having set out the day before for Wales,) were ordered, to deliver to me the answer, to what I had proposed last thursday to their honours. The said gentlemen coming to me about 4 o'clock assured me, that they had made their faithfull and circumstantial report of all the reasons and arguments alledged in behalf of the Netherland vessels, seized at and about Barbadoes; that as to what I had told them, as if several of them were taken at sea, and others after having got a licence of the governor, it consisted in facts, and therefore ought to be proved in a clearer light: That many other things were proposed by me, whereof they were obliged to own that they had got no thorough information; and since admiral Penn himself was now arrived with part of the fleet, that the lord protector and the council had resolved, that they would order the said admiral to give them the reasons and accounts of the seizures of the said ships, as having happened by or under his command: That they could assure me, that the lord protector and the council had no intention, to wrong the inhabitants of the united provinces, but on contrary, that they were ready to shew them all friendship; however, that the said admiral ought to be heard, before any nearer resolution could be taken concerning the said ships. Whereupon I desired that the same might be done the sooner the better, and assured their honors, that I had related nothing but what could sufficiently be proved. They assured me further, that they had also made their report, touching some particular complaints, and more especially about the ship called the Hare in the Field and the Frog, both from Middleburg, and of the Thirsty Hart of Amsterdam; that it was resolved that the judges of the admiralty should with all speed make a report, what causes were brought before them; protesting to me, that, as it was their duty, so likewise they would procure that forthwith according to reason and equity the said matters should be decided. Thereupon I represented circumstantially, the great losses and detriment, which the owners sufferd by so long detention of their ships and goods, and exaggerated particularly the injustice of some persons among the commissioners of captures, and of the committees of the admiralty and fleets, who, in spite of all, will needs have the ship the Hare in the Field to be brought from Portsmouth into the river of London, and that I certainly did believe, that the said ship and the Frog, belonging with her cargoe to the inhabitants and citizens of the city of Middleburg, and bound from St. Malo for the said place, was taken by a private letter of marck ship, and was detained above 4 months already by sinister practices, so that I desired, that the same might not only be released, but also, being wrongfully taken, that the charges and losses might be made good; whereupon the said gentlemen told me, that as soon as they have seen the said report, they would give immediately their orders, as also touching sundry other particular complaints contained in my memorial. And as to the general affair of the marine, their honors assured me, that the lord protector and the council were very well inclined for it, and had duly examined the articles delivered in the name of their high mightinesses; but that the situation of their affairs had not permitted hitherto, to make any certain resolutions upon it. Mr. Jones being one of the committee of the admiralty and the fleet, begun to speak with great warmth concerning the wrongs and losses, which the inhabitants of this state had sustained by the French, and which, as he said, were yet daily done them, and therefore that it would be unreasonable, that we with our ships should protect their trade so far, that they on their side could not revenge themselves upon the same. I replyed, that their honours knew without doubt, that the treaty with the lord embassador of that crown was advanced so far, that it was their own fault, that the said inconveniencies did not cease: that heretofore there was some colour of reason for it, to grant to some private persons letters of reprisal, but that it was unheard of and very strange, to permitt ships being in the publick service of the state to act after that manner. That it was agreed by a special article, that the satisfaction on account of former losses and pretensions being now settled, and the treaty concluded, no new wrongs should be committed. The said gentleman answer'd, that the lord protector and the council had been inclined to finish the said treaty, but that the inhuman murther of the Vaudois happened in the mean while, and prevented the same. Hereupon I mentioned, that the said affair being now accommodated between the duke of Savoy and the said Vaudois, no new objections ought to be started, which their honours declared should not be done on their part. At the same time they told me, that after the conclusion of the said treaty there would be less difficulty in relation to the settling the affair of the marine. I represented to their honours, that even by this state here, in several treaties it was aimed at, and actually stipulated in some already, that a free ship should make free goods; that this was one of the best rules, not to demand from others more than what one was willing to be done to one's self; and that besides this it would be very unjust, that they would have it thus practised by others towards them, and they on the other hand would act otherwise against their nighest neighbours and friends. The said gentlemen promised, that what I had represented to them, should be faithfully reported, and they did again assure me, that the lord protector and the council were intirely inclined, not only to live in peace, but also in confident friendship with the united provinces, and that they would do their utmost, to shew the same by deeds.
Yesterday in the afternoon I inquired of the lord secretary of state, whether the health of the lord protector would permitt, that I, pursuant to their high mightinesses commands, whereof I had spoke to his excellency before, might be informed of his intention and approbation, with the same sincerity, as their high mightinesses had communicated to him their secret resolution concerning the designs of the King of Sweden. Whereupon his honour answered, that the lord protector found himself a little better than before, but that he daily still continued to take physick, and that the physicians had desired him, to abstain as yet as much as possible from consultations of state; that accordingly neither the council nor he had dared to trouble him in the least, but that he hoped and firmly believed, that in a very few days I should speak with him my self. I beg'd very earnestly, that it might be done, the sooner the better; that the season of the year was already gone so far, that their high mightinesses ought to take one resolution or other. He reply'd, that I might be assured, that no good inclination was wanting. Some gentlemen here have assured me, in confidence, that hitherto no negociation has been held with the Swedish ministers; that they complained very much that they would not consent here to their desired levies; and that the lord Fleetwood insisted with great earnestness, that he at least might be permitted, upon the king's commission, to raise a regiment for himself of one thousand English foot soldiers; that his honour and reputation did very much depend from it; that he, having the honour of being the brother of the lord deputy of Ireland, ought not to be so unfortunate, to be refused what heretofore was granted to so many persons: however that nothing positive was resolved upon it. The said lord assured me likewise, that he was sure of the inclination of the lord protector so far, that he neither with Sweden, nor with any body else, would treat any thing to the prejudice of the united Netherlands: he promised me likewise to do his utmost, that all the private affairs, which I had complained of, may be forthwith favorably dispatched.
Some ministers of state here have told me, that the lord mayor had inform'd the council, that many persons, out of the places in the Netherlands, which were infected with a contagious distemper, were fled hither; and that he was afraid, that thereby the same distemper may very easily communicate itself in this publick city. That the council was very loth to give any directions, which might tend to the prejudice of the inhabitants of their high mightinesses dominions; however that it was necessary, that care should be taken. The said gentlemen were of opinion, that their high mightinesses should give orders, that those who intend to come hither, should be obliged to take a certificate of health from the place where they came from, or in any other method, which their high mightinesses should think proper.
Westminster, September 17. 1655. [N. S.]
My lord, &c.
Nieupoort to the states general.
V. xxx. p. 187.
High and mighty lords,
My lords, last monday news arrived here, that general Penn, with about 20 ships, was arrived at Portsmouth from the West Indies, having set sail from Jamaica on the 25th of June O. S. where he has left a good squadron of the best conditioned ships under the command of vice admiral Goodson, an old and experienced seaman: they say also, that there are left still in the island 8000 soldiers. The chief command after the death of general Venables was conferred on collonel Fortescue: the said general Venables (with other officers) died by sickness, having before his death, caused to be drawn up in writing an exact and perfect account of the situation and conveniency of that island. They pretend here, to maintain the said island by all means. In their return several ships have been before the Havana and other places on the coast of Cuba, where one of the largest ships mounted with above 60 guns, and manned in proportion, called the Paragon, was burnt, which was caused, as it is believed, by a lighted tobacco pipe, left in the butler's cabin. Several of the other ships are pretty much damaged at sea by hard weather in their masts and topmasts. As soon as the news was brought of the arrival of the fleet, 50000 pounds sterling were immediately sent to Portsmouth, for the pay of the sailors. There are likewise remitted considerable sums to Scotland for the payment of the army there, those that are disbanded being payd before. In Ireland the same is mostly done out of the confiscated estates; and this affair being finished, the lord deputy is ready to come over to England. There is no news here of general Blake, but only that he still continues cruising in the mouth of the straits of Gibraltar. It is said that the lord protector and the council have sent letters and instructions, to the high officers in the respective provinces, duly to execute the laws and ordonances against the Jesuits, and other roman catholick priests, and ecclesiastical persons, as also against the roman catholicks in general, and that they should especially observe the proclamation now lately issued out.
The lord embassador de Bordeaux gave yesterday a very grand and magnificent entertainment in his new house to the lord embassador of Sweden and to me, as also to the resident of Denmark: at table no other discourses were held but of civility and mirth.
The lord protector finds himself pretty well, but has as yet taken almost every day some physick or other, to strengthen his constitution (having been very much out of order with a violent and dangerous colick) and to remove the cause of his said distemper. There is news here among the merchants, that the Spanish fleet, between 20 and 30 ships strong, is sail'd, with this order and special charge, not to engage with the fleet under admiral Blake, unless they are attacked by them, or cannot conveniently avoid it.
Westminster, September 17th.1655. [N. S.]
high and mighty lords, &c.
Extract of several letters from Spain.
St. Sebastians, the 18th of Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
By an advizo arrived at Madrid the second instant from Hispaniola, in which came the governor's son of that place, his majesty is given to understand, that the English army, that landed there, is totally defeated, and that they carried no more men away than they had in their ships; and that the English navy is returned home with dishonour. Whereupon his majesty hath conferred the title of marquis upon the said governor, and allowed him a pension of 5000 ducats per annum, and upon his son, that brought the news, 1500 ducats per annum. Moreover the same letter advises, that there is another advizo arrived from the admiral of the plate–fleet in the West Indies, informing there his fleet to be at Carthagena in the said Indies in safety, and there shall abide till his majesty sends another fleet to conduct them home.
Bilbao, the 16th of September, same style.
The imbargo on our ships and estates continues here, and is executed with rigor; and the persons of divers of our nation continue in prison. There was a small London vessel came in over the barre, and understanding how it was with us, by the help of a good angel, got out again the same tide. God preserve our Newfoundland ships (from falling into the clutches) which are daily expected here, as likewise the London vessels.
St. Sebastians, 18th. ditto.
I Writ you formerly, that by the king's command there was an imbargo here, which continues and is general all the kingdom over upon all Englishmens estates and ships. Here are 5 vessels in this harbour seized, two whereof were loaden and ready to come away; a merchant of this town, that had bought a good parcel of wool of a Spaniard, and shipped aboard one of them, having not only the wool seized, but his money, wherewith he should have paid for them. His creditors, that sold them to him, coming for his money find it seized by the justice, yet so unreasonable are they, that they put him in prison for not paying for the said wools.
Resolution of the states general.
Sabbathi, Septemb. 18. 1655. [N. S.]
A Ppeared in the assembly Mr. Backer and Mr. P. Van Dam advocate of the East–India company of these united provinces, and presented to their high mightinesses - - - - - - - - - - - - who lately arrived here from the East–Indies, as commander of the nine homeward bound ships. And the said commander did relate by word of mouth, and in general, the situation of the affairs there, as he had left the same on his departure. Whereupon the lord president gave his thanks to the said director and advocate, as also to the said commander, for the trouble they had taken, commanding the said commodore to draw up his said report, and deliver the same to their high mightinesses in writing, that it may serve and avail as time and opportunity shall require. Further, the said advocate did deliver to their high mightinesses the report, which formerly was made by word of mouth, by Huybrecht de Laresse late commander of the four homeward bound ships, which arrived in June last from the Indies; as likewise the said advocate deliver'd his report made formerly by him by word of mouth to their high mightinesses, concerning his advocate business in England touching his commission, which he was charged with from the said East–India company: which being come under deliberation, it has been agreed and resolved, that both the said pieces shall be read on monday next.
A letter of intelligence.
Paris, 18th of September 1655. [N. S.]
Here is a report, that the Spanish fleet of war, which set sail not long since from Cadiz, hath met with the silver fleet, and conducted them all safe home, notwithstanding general Blake's fleet, which was in sight of them, and durst not fight them. Their majesties depart hence on monday next for Fontainbleau, where the king will take the mineral waters for the preservation of his health. It was said, that the cardinal would return for la Fere, to give order about the sending a great convoy for Condé and St. Gillain, to provide those places with provisions, ammunition, and other necessaries; but it is assured, that their majesties wanting the presence of his eminence, monsieur le Tellier hath received order to take care of that business.
Pavia is not yet taken, but defends itself very stoutly.
From Viole president of Brussels.
Brussels, 18 Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
I Believe his highness hath sent you word of the treachery of Marcouse, which is very troublesom, in regard it doth make people to speak against us without a cause. The enemies are still in their old quarters, fortifying and victualling the same. It is a thing incredible how they have been able to subsist all this while in a ruined country. As soon as they are withdrawn, our army is resolved to undertake something; and it is an absolute necessity, otherwise the country is undone.
The queen of Sweden was to depart to–day, but she doth not go now till tuesday next. It is said here (but privately) that the queen is a catholic.
The examination of Joseph Longbothom of Mountpellon near Hallifax in the county of York, taken the 8th day of September 1655.
This examinant saith, that about one month before the rendevouz on Marchdenmoor 1654, one mr. Toby Baraclough of Hallifax in the county aforesaid came to this examinant several times, and asked this examinant, whether he would ride on a horse in the new army, that was raising for the king; and did very much inveigh against the present power and government, and said, he would have as many of his tenants, as he had horses to ride in the same army for the king; and that they did not doubt, but to destroy all those round–head rogues. And further saith, that the said Toby Baraclough came to this examinant four or five several times about the same thing; but one of the times this examinant denying him so to do, and said he had lost two brothers in the parliament's service, and had been himself too, he would never be false to them now. Thereupon the said Baraclough did draw his sword, and cut this examinant in the hand; and saith, that at that time he had (as he verily believes) near twenty very able and lusty horses. And further saith, that he this examinant holds a piece of land of the said Baraclough, and that at the time aforesaid he this examinant owed him one year's rent with nineteen nobles; and that at the said time the said Baraclough offered this examinant, that if he would ride one of his horses, he would give him that year's rent, that was behind, and a lease of that land for his own and his wife's life. And further saith, that about the time aforesaid the said Baraclough rid constantly with sword and pistols; and further saith, that one mr. Edward Hanson, formerly a captain for the king, is his only companion, and, as this examinant verily believes, was guilty of the same design; but of him this examinant can say nothing positively; and saith, that there are divers others, that he hath some cause to suspect thereabouts; and this he is willing to attest.
A letter of intelligence from Spain.
San Lucar the 19th of Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
V. xxx. p. 239.
Mr. Edward Watts,
On the 11th current here was a general imbargo made in these parts upon what effects were found of the English, which is what we have long feared, and therefore but little found, &c. The governor of this town, in regard he cannot find effects in the English power, hath imbargoed several parcels in the hands of Spaniards and Flemings, which are really sold, and the money paid for long since. The Conde was pleased to honour me with his first visit, being about five a–clock in the morning, and wondred to find so great a house, and so little goods in it; but I told him, we feared this long since, and that the birds were flown.
San Lucar, the 26th of Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
The above lines are a copy of my last over land; since which hath not offered any thing worth your notice. Not yet any order from Madrid for the sale of what little effects hath been imbargoed of the English, nor hope there will not come any, for if it once come to that, it will be a public war.
The Spanish fleet is still abroad; but it's thought now will speedily retire into port, by reason the winter begins to come on.
General Venables to the protector.
May it please your highnesse,
I Doubt not but generall Pen hath informed your highnesse of the weake condition hee left mee in, out of which all that sawe me judged it was impossible for mee to recover. Even the phisitians dispaired, except change of ayre did helpe mee, though it was alsoe doubted I could not live to bee put on board; yet death being certaine, if I stayed, it was resolved to adventure mee, in regard I could but dye. The extreame wants of your highnesse forces in the Indies was alsoe recommended to me by your officers there, to represent to your highnesse; but being my weaknesse disables mee to travell by land, I am at present incapacitated to discharge that trust, untill the Lord shall give more strength, or bring mee about by sea. In the interim, that your highnesse may bee blessed with prosperous successe in all your pious and honourable designes, and bee temporally and eternally happy, is and shall bee the constant prayer of,
Aboard the Marstonmoore in
Sept. the 9th 1655.
Your highnesse moste
humble and faithfull servant
General Venables to secretary Thurloe.
I Doe perswade myselfe, that you have had a report by gennerall Pen's fleet of my death, which was moste probable, my recovery beeing dispaired of by all even the physitians, and change of ayre as the last of remedyes, (all other faylinge) though it was thought by most, I should never see the sea; yet being I could not but dye, it was resolved to adventure me, though I was a meer skelliton, and had by tymes been in a raveing condition about 3 weeks, and continued soe above a weeke after I came on ship–board, and yet continue but skin and bones, and soe weake, that I cannot ride or scarse sitt, except very easy; and therefore not able to travell by land to London, but must come about by Thames, though my heart long to informe his highness of the state of his affaires in the west; and indeed hast is extreemly necessary. If the Lord bring me alive to London, I shall fully inform you of all, which I dare not committ to paper, being constreyned to make use of another hand, for which your pardon is earnestly desired by,
Aboard the Marstonmoore near
St. Ellins point, this 9th of
Your very humble servant,
If the Lord grant me the mercy to see your face, I shall acquaint you with all the extreem wants and difficultyes I have strugled with, as alsoe such mutinous and discontented spiritts as have acted to the great prejdice of his highness, and, if not redressed, will (hazard at least) ruine the whole army and designe.
Bordeaux, the French embassador in England, to his father.
Vol. xxix. p. 620.
The letter, which Minard sent me by the post, arrived here to–day. It doth give me cause to give you most humble thanks for the pains you have taken upon the reports, which were spread of the sending of monsieur Aligre and mr. Boucherat. This news was brought into England a fortnight ago; but it seemed to me to be so ill–grounded, that I made no reflection upon it. I perceive by the answer, which his eminence made you, and by that which monsieur Sanguien received from the earl of Brienne, that the alarm was given without any foundation. And I confess it must needs be, that the court doth stand in very great need of the peace of England, if it be reduced to have any thought of making now such a low condescension, which besides hath no likelihood of success; and where there is no necessity after that a treaty is concluded, and that there remains only the signing of it. If the protector be resolved to agree, I will not write any thing concerning it with certainty; and you know without doubt, what the present disposition is of our court, to whom I do not write to–night, having nothing considerable to write unto them. And since that you have taken yourself to a country life, although it may be, that an active one would be more proper to your genius, and likewise more beneficial unto you; but I shall leave all to your own discretion. In the mean time I must still importune you to supply me with your credit for the payment of my bills, and to supply me with some assistance, else I must suddenly fall into an utter confusion, and an impossibility of subsisting any longer.
I might have taken an occasion a while since to have prevented this, by having withdrawn myself upon the orders, which were sent me for that purpose; but you were of another opinion with monsieur Servien, which I followed; but now I am not in a condition to disengage myself: wherefore I humbly crave your assistance for some time. I hope you will not deny this favour to one, who hath the honour to be, &c.
P. S. Just now is come new advise, that general Venables, who was said to be dead in America, is safe arrived at Plymouth, giving that design over for lost.
[London, 10/20 Sept. 1655.]
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburg, to secretary Thurloe.
I Have not received any from you this weeke, nor any for you from mr. Rolt, from whom I have not heard since he left Stetin the 28th of last month with a good guard for Posna, as I writ you in my last. The most certaine newes we have here from Poland, &c. I present you within the inclosed paper, to which I have nothinge considerable to ad. A ship lately come from Lisbon reported here, that generall Blake had fought the Spanish fleete, and was worsted by them; which newes beinge well entertained here, I questioned the shipper aboute it, whoe then denied to have reported any such thinge, only that he heard the king of Spaine had sent 30 men of warre to observe generall Blake's motions, and to fight him, if he attempted the plate fleete, which allsoe the letters from south Spaine mention; which yet I thinke is as true as the other report, it beinge noe easie matter for the Spaniard, as the case stands with him, to equip and man soe many shipps. If there be any thinge of it, I suppose you have notice ere this. The king of Sweden's ships of warr lye before Dantzick, and have certainly laid a very great tole upon all ships tradeinge thither; whereupon the lords of Dantzik have shut up the pound–chamber, prohibitinge trade, and forbidinge any to pay tole to the Swede upon paine never to trade more with this cittie; soe resolved they are to oppose the Swede: if others concerned in the trade of the Baltique doe the like, it may keepe the trade free; otherwise the kinge of Sweden will carry on his designe to be absolute there. I remaine
Hamburg, 11 Sept. 1655.
Your most humble servant,
You will please to give mr. Needham a fight of the Latin paper, which I have not time to transcribe.
My corespondent in London writes me, that now the servants in the post–office require postage for my pacquets, which have for some tyme past been free from Antwerpe, though I have allwaies paid theither. You will please to order whether I must pay or passe as formerly, and to let me knowe it in the next, and order the servants in the posthouse accordingly.
H. Cromwell, major general of the forces in Ireland, to secretary Thurloe.
I Received your of the 4th instant, and give you many thankes for your relation of Jamica; and though wee have mett with some more then ordinary crosse providences in this undertakinge, yet I doubt not but the lord will smille uppon it in the issue.
I have endeavoured to make what improvement I could in the short time allotted me toucheinge the furnisheinge you with a recruite of men, and a supply of younge Irish girles. In order to it, I have advised with the chif officers neer me, not haveinge oppurtunitie to make it more publique; neither doe I thinke it convenient, untill I knowe your resolutiones more particularly, but shall nevertheless make the use of it (in the meane time you desire) viz. to feel their dispositiones to that worke.
It's the opinion of those, to whome I have given some hint of this bussiness, that if provision bee made for their pay and accommodation, which we are not any waies able to doe, haveinge much exhausted our treasure by our late disbandeinge and the keepinge the souldiers uppon our pay for some time longer, that their will be noe dificulty to engage 1000 or 1500 men, or perhapes more, if necessity requires. It will bee requisite, that wee heare speedily and more particularly from you, what number of men will be expected, and howe they are to be formed, and what encouragements may be held forthe to them; and the rather because of the advantage we have to answeer your desires by the present continueinge together the soulders of the late disbanded; which if let slippe, and they dispersed, the bussiness will be much more dificult and hazardous to be effected. Concerninge the younge women, although we must use force in takeinge them up, yet it beinge so much for their owne goode, and likely to be of soe great advantage to the publique, it is not in the least doubted, that you may have such number of them as you shall thinke fitt to make use uppon this account. It will be necessarye, that care be taken for the clotheinge of them, which, if you allow money for, may be best and cheapest done heer; all which is submitted to consideration.
I desire to express as much zeal in this designe, as you would wish, and shall be as deligent in the prosequution of any directiones, which I shall receive, tendeinge towards it, judgeinge it to be a bussiness of as publique concernment as any you have nowe uppon your handes; and the sendinge away these men and women will much answeer your affaires heer and their.
Care must be taken for shipps and provisions for their transportation. It's thought at present, that Gallway or Kinsale are the fittest places to send your shipps to receive them, butt we shall informe our selves more fully, and give you a particular account by the next. My brother Fleetwood left us one thursday laste, and I may say it, noe mane was more troubled to parte with him then my selfe; though blessed be God, I doe not finde many discouragements in my worke, and hope shall not doe it soe longe as the lord is pleased to keep my harte upright before hime. Wee feared we might have had some trouble with the disbanded party; they weer a little disorderly at first, but now are quiett, and I may give the same account of the rest, for all is quiett, and like to be soe. I ame nowe goeinge to Kilkenny, wheer I intend to be to settle the bussiness of the army and the disbanded party. I ame prevented in time, and therfore cannot be soe large as otherwaies I would, but shall acquaint you more fully of some thinges by the next poste. I ame
Sept. 11th. 1655.
Your truly affectionate
freind and humble servant,
You may please to remember, that by our instructions, in the absence of the deputye, the power devolves uppon the councell or any five. Wee are nowe butt that number, soe that we cane doe noethinge, unless the whole number be present; therefore unless you reduce it to a less quantum, or else send us speedily our additionall supply, wee shall be putt to very great dificultyes and streights. Your speedy care herein will be very requisite
You are pleased to putt great weight uppon getting a fitt person to comande in the West–Indies. I am of your oppinion, it is a matter of great importance. What doe you think of sir John Reynoldes? I doe not knowe, but that he might accept of it, if handsomely treated. He and I have had some droleinge discourses aboute it. Whatever is done in it, must be carryed with privacy and prudence. If coll. Stubbers could be perswaded to goe in a less capacitie, he would be usefull, haveinge bin much in those partes formerly; he is nowe reduced. I hint my thoughts to you, butt submitt them. I ame
A letter to the English merchants, traders for Malaga or other parts of Spain, in London.
Malaga, the 21st September, 1655. [N. S.]
Although we almost despair, that this letter should come to your hands, by reason of this great search used for surprizal of all letters, that are directed either to, or from any of our nation; yet we cannot but adventure these lines, to represent unto you our distressed condition in this city, where all our estates are sequestred, our books and papers extorted from us, our persons imprisoned in the common goal, where we suffer not only the calamities of prisoners, but also are maliciously accused of concealing yours and our own estates; and under that pretence all variety of rigors are exercised; and the extremities, which the height of malice can invent, are for future expected, whereof we have already very infallible symptoms, for that they will oblige us (if find us debtors to any man in England) to pay it here to the confiscators: and as our own necessities here do impossibilitate the performance hereof, we must submit ourselves to a prolonged imprisonment, and what other severities may be imagined most conduceable to our judges their purposes. Their rigid proceedings we have represented to the king's majesty and his council of state, manifesting how contrary they are to the articles of peace, and his majesty's royal word, having assured us by the twenty–third article (in case of a breach betwixt the nations) the space of six months for the retirement of our persons and estates, without any arrest or molestation in either; and besides, we have alledged what more might promote our redress, and we shall earnestly entreat you would please to contribute your assis tance, using what means there may be most advantageous for the speedy consecution of our liberty and estates, wherein we from hence cannot propose a course to you, but must refer it to your more mature judgments. Only we shall again most earnestly request you, that you would sympathize and compassionate our sufferings, and manifest your tender sense thereof by a solicitous prosecution of all means, which you shall conceive most requisite for effecting our speedy redress; wherein we humbly implore the divine providence to conduct you, and prosper us all, who are,
Your most humble servants,
To the worshipful the English merchants,
traders for Malaga, or other parts of Spain, these, in London.
Mr. J. Aldworth, consul at Marseilles, to secretary Thurloe.
My last unto you was of the 14th currant, giving you notice, that the foure private ships of warr, that are arming att Thollon to goe a theving, might part in 18 dayes, and that doubtlesse they would take many of our English ships, that are at present trading in those seas, as also that 10 of general Blake's ships was att Argier, furnishing themselves with provisions; which confirme. I have now received advice from Barcelona, of the 16th currant, giving notice, that the admirall Vandoisme, with his fleete, was battering against a small place called Palamos (sea–port, neare Barcelona) which is alsoe besieged by land by the prince of Conti, who hath aboute 15000 horse and foote, and in all probabillity the place wil bee taken either by composition, or by force, in 10 dayes, notwithstanding a Spanish galey in the night crept under the shore, and relieved it with provisions and aboute 200 soldiers; and afterwards forced through the French fleete. The Spanish armey in Cattalonia is quite destroyed, neither have they any sea–port considerable after Palamos be taken but Barcelona itselfe. The Naples fleete is dayly expected from PorteSpetia to succor said place, which if arrive in time, will in all appearance bee too strong for the duke Vandoisme. The vice–king of Cattalonia for want of mony is hardly able to keepe any soulders aboute him, and that which dishartens them the more, is the feare they have, that general Blake hath taken there plate–fleete. This being the needfull for present, so humbly take leave, and remayne,
the 21st Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
Your honor's servant,
Extract out of the register of the lords states general.
Veneris, 21 Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
There being once more produced in the assembly the letter of the lord Nieuport, their high and mighty lords embassador extraordinary in England, written at Westminster the 14th instant, wherein he desireth leave to return home; after deliberation had, it is thought fit and understood, that an answer shall be writ to the said lord Nieuport, that he may make a journey over, and continue here for the space of two months, or thereabouts, to discharge himself by report with the lords Beverning and Jongestall his collegues of their extraordinary embassy; but before his departure from thence, that he do use all efficacious endeavours, to the end the marine treaty may be finished and perfected. The lords commissioners of Zealand do insist for the turning of the said extraordinary embassy into an ordinary one.
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburg, to secretary Thurloe.
I Have received your letter by this poste, beinge sory for your indisposition of health, which I doubt the over–pressinge of affaires occasioneth. I shall observe your order touchinge mr. Rolt, from whom I have not heard, since he left Stetin. Not knowinge in what condition theise may finde you, I shall not be further trublesome at present, referinge you to the inclosed paper, and remayneinge,
Hamb. 12th Sept. 1655.
Your moste humble servant,
Major–general Massie is here still.
Sir, here's a report spread this day by letters from Amsterdam, as if his highness should have beene lately in danger of his lyfe, but in what manner I cannot yet learne; but many such reports have come from thence, of late hither, and finde good entertainment amonge the Dutch, especially the Netherlanders.
To Monsieur Petkum.
From Paris, the 22d Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
The French forces are still fortifying of St. Gillain and Condé. There hath past nothing considerable since the taking thereof. The enemies troops are full in their old quarters. The earl of Fuensaldagna is at Hall, the prince of Condé near Tourney, and the Lorrainers at Aest. The progress of the Swedes doth cause many high Dutchmen to go away without leave, to make a more advantageous war. Here is a report, that the king of Portugal and the king of Spain do treat together underhand about an accommodation, the latter offering to acknowledge the first for king during the truce, which they shall make together. The siege of Pavia doth still continue; and notwithstanding the furious assaults those within make continually upon our men, yet we hope to be masters thereof at the end of this month.
On saturday in the evening the embassador of Holland had audience of the king, wherein he did nothing but felicitate his majesty upon his victories; but he of Portugal, who had also audience the same day, after he had made the same felicitations, took his leave of his majesty to go to Rome. These two embassadors had demanded audience of the cardinal, but his eminence had no time to give them any, by reason he was preparing for his journey to La Fere; and indeed he departed the next day after, being sunday, with monsieur Tellier. His majesty and the duke of Anjou went for Fontainbleau half an hour before, where he arrived that night.
There hath been sent from hence great store of clothes, hats, and shoes to those of the garrisons of St. Gillain and Condé.
A letter of intelligence.
Paris, 22d September 1655. [N. S.]
We have little news here. The French army in Catalonia is grown weak, and that in Italy weaker. The siege of Pavia by the French doth not prosper. The town hath 4000 good men, and well provided. They make bold fallies and successful. An acquaintance of mine, a colonel on the French side, hath lost two captains there, and half his regiment of common soldiers. In Flanders (we say) they are levying a very great army at their own (the people's) charge; which they have now at length obtained leave for from the king of Spain, which heretofore they would never permit. They mean to try if they can regain what they lost this summer, or else to strengthen the French quarters, who thought to keep 15000 soldiers in the king of Spain's country all this winter. We had much talk of great differences at Cologne, but they are all now at great peace and friendship. Some of the stirring party are gone away, and some quieted. I can tell you Peter shews himself a notable fellow; he is not to be made a fool of.
To mr. Petit.
Paris, the 22d Sept. 1655. [N. S.]
We have nothing considerable by this ordinary. Their majesties parted for Fontainbleau on sunday, and at the same time cardinal Mazarin went for La Fere, to give orders, and to cause the convoy to part. It doth much import the enemies to do their utmost endeavours to hinder it, which (as it's thought) they cannot do. The voyage of the queen of Sweden to Rome has been put off, as it is written from Brussels, where some small sum of money has been remitted from Spain, but in so small quantity, that that succour will not bring them any ease. The duke of Mantua parted yesterday to go and meet the king at Fontainbleau, from whence he is to return for Italy: one cannot discover, what he is come to do in France. We still wait for the event of the siege of Pavia, which keeps every body in surprize.
Count Brienne to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
Paris, 22d September, 1655. [N.S.]
This is only to let you know before my departure for Fontainbleau, that I have received your letter of the xvi of this month, and that I will write to his eminence concerning what you mentioned in your letter.
Here was a letter read of the 13th of this month, which did speak doubtfully of the recovery of the protector, in regard of the disease wherewith he was assaulted; but there being no mention made thereof in your last letter, it is likely he is well again in health.
Just now I receive advice, that by the command of the king of Spain the effects belonging to the English, which have been found in his kingdoms, are seized upon. This is a declaration of a war between his crown and the commonwealth of England. I must likewise not forget to tell you, that a French vessel being taken by an English man of war, the company of the said vessel made themselves masters afterwards of the said man of war, and brought her to Rochel. I have written thither to proceed against her, and to keep the men in custody. I have also writ to Boulogne, that they should keep in safe custody those of an English ship, who having assaulted a frigate of the marshal d'Aumont's, were beaten and taken: the mariners and officers being asked, by what right they assaulted the English, they made answer, that they knew nobody at sea, and that they had right to lord it there. This I advise you of, to the end you may not fall short in your reply, if your commissioners or the secretary of state do speak to you in their behalf.
Resolution of the states general.
Mercurii, Sept. 22. 1655. [N. S.]
The lord prince Maurice of Nassau, lieutenant general of horse of these united Netherlands and governor of the city of Wesel, standing within the bar, has desired their high mightinesses, with such reasons as served for the purpose, that they would be pleased to honour him with the place of field marshall of the said united Netherlands, being become vacant, by the death of the late lord van Brederode, delivering for that purpose also to their high mightinesses a certain memorial in writing, whereby it might appear that the said prince had served this state from the year 1618, from a common soldier, up to the highest charge, during a time now of above thirty five years. Which being deliberated upon, they left of, and the provinces having desired a copy of the said memorial, the same is granted them hereby.
General Venables to secretary Thurloe.
I Received your kind lines with much satisfaction, and did beleeve my comeing would bee as unexpected, as my recovery was strange to all, none imagining it was probable. If I had beene able to have rid in a coach, I should not desire to goe by sea (though the begining of my recovery was thence) but his highnesse pleasure and comands shal bee observed by mee soe farre as ability and life will permitt, but I cannot assure my selfe of health to travell, in regard yesterday (to my former weakenesse) a violent distemper was added, which hath extreamly disabled mee; but this morning (I blesse the lord) I am som what better: however the first opportunity (God willing) shall either bringe to London or leave by the way,
Portsmouth bay, near Spithead,
Sept. the 12th 1655.
Your most obliged servant,
General Penn's account to the councill of his voyage to the West Indies. Given this 12 Sept. 1655.
In the handwriting of secretary Thurloe.
Sailed from Portsmouth, 26 December. By the way met with a small vessel: that all he saw.
Six days after, general Ven. mr. Winslow, and I gave orders to the victuallers to make what hast after one gone before that sailed better.
29 Jan. arrived at the Barbados. There were secured 14 or 15 sayle of Dutch ships.
The fleet dispatched the 20th of December from Portsmouth under rear admiral arrived but the day before: the other victuallers the 30th of January.
We tooke up one into New England, who for that time gave an account the 17th of March by capt. Collins.
The Marston–man and Selby were sent to the Leward islands, to seize all ships, and to raise some men, 4 March sent away.
Shipped the army the 30th of March at Barbados and sailed the next day.
Some ships being leakie they went to the island at Luzea; stayed a day and night.
The 6th of March arrived at St. Christophers in the French road, and were saluted by them both from sea and forts.
The 7th dispatched a frigott to Porte Rio to see their strength: returned the 11th, and told us but 2 inconsiderable ships.
The 12th they saw the island of Hispaniola: the day before resolved where to land.
The 13th came before St. Domingo: they agreed that Buller and Holdip should stay with Pen before St. Domingo and to land those men to the windward of the towne, but they could not, and so sent them to the river Hinde: the other part went with the vice admiral and rere admiral.
Vice admiral landed the sea regiment.
At parting resolved his fleet to look into H. bay, and land there, if they could; if not to go to the leeward.
The wind blew on the shore, that they could not land, and so went to the leeward.
The 14th Buller being sent, &c. sayd noe landing at H. bay, but after they did land. Buller and Holdip's Regiment being landed marched over the river, and had order to goe to a passe above near the towne. 16th they landed.
18th Ships plyed before St. Domingo and God very merciful, that the ship not lost, the weather being bad.—The towne shott through some of our ships, and we shott in the town.
The 19th general Venables came on board, and sayd the army was weary and wanted water, and were retreated.
The 25th army marcht up towards the town: the ships were ready to assist them, and some ships to run in upon the town, and also some to run into the harbour.
This 25th the enemy fell on them, the M. G. was slain, and they retreated.
The 29th general Venables retreated, and we went to him to Hinde bay, where discoursed with commissioners and officers, where they resolved not to attempt further, and desired to be transported to some other place. Reasons gave because soldiers betrayed them.
After resolved for Hispaniola, sent out Martin galley to get intelligence for the mayne, but he gott little.
The 3d of May army shipped.
The 4th of May the fleet met.
The 7th mr. Winslow died.
The 9th saw Jamaica.
The 10th came on shore.
Being there we fell to clean our ships.
The 15th day the army was in treaty with some of the people, and articles were made, but the people would not make good the articles.
That 8 ships transport them to some part of America, they bringing their own victuals with one suit of clothes; but they refused, being 500 men in arms. I sent 3 ships for provisions to Caimanas: I heard alsoe that there were some French men there fishinge for turtles, which would have been a great refreshment.
Then we sitted a ship with the Cardiffe to see Carthagena for intelligence; she brought word back that 5 ships there, one very great ship of 1000 tun's flagg in the main top, the rest lesser ship.
May 19 arrived 2 of the ships of provision for England, William and Recovery.
Collonel Buller 22 went aboard to follow the enemy, and we met him at sea with some boats, but mist the enemy, and brought home some cattle.
Then a view of our provisions, appeared to be three months provision the 20th of May.
24 May called our commanders together, having before spoken with G. V. and other officers, to know what was further to be done. They said the army was fitt to attempt nothing.
And finding that they were in no condition to proceed, the men being sickly and the provision but little, we agreed that the station ships goe home, and the frigotts stay, whereby the frigotts would be enabled with provision to stay, otherwise all must go home together.
Besides it would be a great charge, and they were uselesse too in those seas, because the stream and wind being one way, &c.
The 25 the ships being in careen, the Discovery blown up by the negligence of a man who was drawing brandy; there was on board her the lower tire of the Swissars and some other persons.
The guns wee got all again,
The commissioners agreed to send 3 ships to N. England for provisions, giving them creditt of 10000 l. ordering them to return with all speed.
They set sail with us out of that port.
These ships were sitting about the 20th, from that time to our coming, altering the provisions out of one ship into another.
The 18th of June the Augustin ship came in, a provision ship, and with her a loaden ship that had other provisions.
The 21th I gave vice admiral Goodson instructions to comand one ship, and, for his assistants capt. Blake and capt. Blagg, since come home with G. Venables.
The 25th came out of Jamaica.
The 29th met with the 3 ships sent for turtles. They had some with them, but the French men were gone.
The 6th of July, to the westward of St. Antonio, in Cuba: they made a fire, supposing it had been their fleet from Cartagena.
The 13th Paragon blown up, the fire took in the steward room; examined how it began; but could not. Then we were in 11 or 12 leagues of the Havana; 100 men perished in her.
The 13th we fetch in with the Havana at 6 a clock: here three of our ships parted from us.
I stayed not here for want of provisions.
The 16th, being at the bay of Malanser, met with a Dutch man, a small pickaroone, having a copy only of comission from French governor of St. Christophers.
He had a 11 of his men on the island getting provision.
He had been before the Havanna 12 dayes: in that time 12 ships came in, 5 of them came in the 13th, 2 were flaggs ad. and vice admiral, and said they were the New Spain fleet.
Sayd came by St. Antin. I said I did; he asked me if they made a fire: I said they did; on which he said, it was a sign the plate fleet was not come by, that was their signe, and they stayed there to bring the letters from the admirall, and would then depart.
Noe ships of any flagg came in before those aforesaid.
Severall of these ships Dutch built that came into the Havana.
The ships bound for New England went from us here.
This intelligence I dispatched away by a brigantine to vice admiral Goodson.
13 Aug. met with a ship bound for Barbadoes, who told us that the Great Charity was arived there.
29 Aug. met with a French prize . . . . taken.
31 Aug. arrived at Portsmouth.
Gen. Pen was asked what number of ships are left behind: he answered 12 ships of warr, besides the Augustin that came with provisions. We took out their sick men, and filled them with landmen, and victualled for 5 months all but bread, and for that 10 weekes, which was supplyed afterwards. 3 for New England only victuallers.
Besides we left the Dutch prizes, some of which were sold.
He was asked what instructions were left with Goodson.
He delivered them in writing to my lord president with his commission, besides what are in . . . . It was resolved between them, that he was resolved to go before Cartagena, and to do what he could upon that fleet.
He was asked, what he could say as to the countrey Jamaica, and what design they are upon there.
As to the island, we never saw a 4th part of it: I was informed that it is very good, as good as any land in America, and the inhabitants there say much better. Referrs himself to the description sent by G. Venables.
As for design, they none but to plant. There was an instrument sent to me, whereby land is allotted to the severall regiments to plant, which I signed.
Other design they have none, save the building of a fort for serveing the harbour, as also that they will endeavour to clear the country of the enemy.
There were not above 12 or 14 hundred men, women, and children upon the island: about 500 were men in armes.
The island is for scituation to annoy the Spaniard as low as the Honduras the best in America:
Stands for the destroying of Cartagena: it was much provided with provisions from hence; kill 80000 hogs every year for their grease, called hogs butter vended at Cartagena: Ships can saile both from and to Cartagena to and from this island in 5 dayes. There is an excellent river runs by the town, fresh water. The harbour he saith is good as ever he rid in.
Mr. R. Wild's proposal to secretary Thurloe.
That besides the share of the pearle fishing formerly promised to mr. secretarie Thurloe, Richard Wylde will be contented to allowe and pay him 500 l. after the first yeare of his arrivall in Suratt in the East–Indies, and be possest of the consullship of that portt of Surratt and factorie, subordinat therunto; and soe every yeare after 500 l. for soe long time, as the said Richard Wylde shall soe continue consull in those parts.
Provided he doe soe prevaile with his highnes the lord protector, to confer and settle the said consullship upon him for three yeares or more, as he shall please, with allowance of two per cent. as usually allowed unto other consulls in Turkey, &c. or 2½ per cent. in regard of the long and tedious voyage thither, and the custom of those cuntries, to give great presents to the governers and chief men every yeare, besides all other occasions, which happen extrodinary; all which muste be defreyed out of the consull's allowance.
That his highnes be pleased to grant him a full and ample commission, with power not only to order and governe all the nation, there residing, in point of trade, &c. as that ther be noe undervalluing of our Europe commodities carried thither, nor noe over–valuinge of the Indian commodities to be brought home, or for other parts, but allso to collect and leavy the said consulledge upon all goods and treasure, whatsoever shall be laden or unladen upon any ships, barkes, or other vessells belonging to the commonwealth, or be laden or unladen by any English or other subjects of this commonwealth, upon any other ships, pincks, or other vessalls, of the natives or other strangers, whomesoever, with such penaltys to be imposed upon such as shall refuse to pay the said consulledg, or privatly convay them away, to prevent the payment therof.
That besides what before mentioned, the said Richard Wylde will present unto mr. secatarie's ladie on fair jewell, sett with eighteen fassett dimonds, and three pendant diamonds, at such time, as he shall be embarked on his said voyage to the East–Indies, with the said commission, or he be assured, that he shall enjoye itt in a full and ample manner, without any molestation or hindrance whatsoever, or wheresoever. This in case the said trade be continued open and free, as now itt is; and will require a regulation therin by consulls, as in other parts neerer home. That in case his highnes shall renew the Easte–India companie's patent, and settle itt againe, by way of joint–stockes, that then he will soe prevaile with his highnes, as to recommende the said Richard Wylde unto the said company for their president in Suratt, with such allowance as formerly given to other presidents, usually 500 l. a yeare; and provide him one shipe and pinace for the prosecution of the said pearle fishing. In this case the afforesaid 500 l. a yeare to be allowed out of the said cunsulledg, to be laid aside and void. The jewell only shal be presented as before, with such other rarities out of India, as shall manifest the said Richard Wylde's thankfullnes for mr. secretarie's favor and assistance herin.
September the 13th 1655.