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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February (1 of 6)
Monsieur Augier to secretary Thurloe.
The count of Brienne had appointed me againe last mundaye to present me unto the king att his entrance into the councill; but the chancelor being still sick, the said councill mett ever since att mr. Dormeson's house councellour of state; and the said count himselfe being also fallen sick since last wednesdaye, I am still expecting his oportunitie for to passe by his intermission my compliment unto his majesty.
The cardinall sent me word againe yesterdaye, that he had given all necessary orders unto mr. de Servient, as well as unto the said count of Brienne, for assignments, upon which wee maye receive present payement of mr. de Cezi's debte. Monsieur de Bordeaux presseth as much as he can the said payement, as also his expeditions for England.
The little queene's and the princesse of Orenge's feares att their first meeting have soe much the lesse touched this court as that they have lasted butt little. There are talks now of the said princesse's marriage with the duke of Lunebourg, which will doubtlesse comme to noething, as well as the duke of Nemours to mademoiselle de Longeville, hindred by the princesse of Carignan, who indeavoureth to match the said ladye with prince Eugene her son, by reason the said duke has bin in sacris.
The newe edict for the coine here passeth by this reason, qu'a force d'y mal aller tout y va bien. They make every daye 10000 crownes in lis of this new faction, for to give it after this rate unto the soldiers and others of his majesty's creditors; neverthelesse I am informed it will only be made in Paris, by reason the provinces refuse to accept of the liards and other sorts of money newely created by his majestie.
There are certaine newes from Nismes, that above 30 families comme out of Avignon, by reason of the misunderstandings happened there about two yeares since about the consulate betweene the comon people and the gentry mantained by the pope, have professed the reformed religion in the said Nismes, where severall other popish families doe also convert as well as att Millau and other parts of Rouvergue and Languedoc. The popish clerge being not able to disgest so many great mutations both public and private which threaten their kittchinne, the artchebishop of Tholoze thinking to complaine some dayes since unto the queene against those of the religion in the said Languedoc, shee chid him exceedingly, that hee would in such a time as this kindle the fire in the state against those poore people, sayd shee, which are the king's best servants, and who have shewed it by their constant service during the last troubles, that they might have undone all the kingdome. The mareschall of Grammont, one of the best heads of the councill, mentained strongly the queene's reasons, and the king happening to come thereupon turned his back unto the said archbishop, who upon the denyall withdrewe himselfe shamefully out of her majesty's rome.
Great store of protestant officers are parted from Languedoc to goe and serve the protestant cantons, who have sent hither an expresse purposely to earnest some officers, and
especially for their horse. Wee have nothing else for this present worthie of your honour's entertainment. I remaine alwaies,
Paris, the 11/1 February, 1655/6.
Boreel, the Dutch embassador in France, to the states general.
High and mighty lords,
My lords, here are letters out of Switzerland and from Geneva, which advise, that the siege of Rappersweil, undertaken by those of Zurich alone, did still continue, the besieged defending themselves very couragiously; yet the besiegers had proceeded with their approaches so far, that they were got under the walls, and were resolved to give a general assault, the success whereof will be of great consequence. The army of the canton of Berne is also upon their march, consisting of 14000 men and 7 pieces of ordnance, and by carelesseness of the arrear guard, they sell into an ambuscade, whereby the whole army was put into some disorder, 160 soldiers killed upon the place, and the cannon taken by their enemies.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
The town of Lubeck having demanded permission to carry two ships loading full of Norway wood, to raise the house of the Osterlins; Holland and Zealand have taken it into consideration, that is, fairly excused it.
The commissioners of the other four members of Overyssell are also come. The drossard of Wollenhoven is the chiefest. After what manner they are summoned hither, the enclosed resolution will tell you; by the other is to be seen that those of Holland are yet also unprepared for the equipage.
The letter, which the lord Nieuport writes about the hire of his house, hath occasioned in the assembly some grumbling, in regard he doth draw a great deal of money as embassador extraordinary; that an ordinary or inferior minister would be able to do the same thing, so that nothing was done upon the letter, but taken into consideration by the provinces; but Holland doth favour him, and will make him to receive satisfaction. Likewise, when the harmony shall be once agreed on and established, I believe the lord Nieuport will be also recalled, or that he will be established in the quality of an ordinary embassador.
The embassy to Spain doth vanish; so that the baron of Gent (formerly also nominated for embassador to the emperor, since that to Spain) will pass for a great chimerical embassador at least in partibus insidelium.
The lord Heinsius resident in Sweden had this morning audience the first time since his return, having been sick ever since: he only made report of his journey from Stockholm, having demanded commissioners before he will say any thing more particular.
There hath been also a conference held to alter the instruction of the embassadors into Denmark. The lord Bemmel is the first of this conference, but the lord raet pensio nary saith to have particular advice from the lord Beuningen, that before the true intention of the protector was known, there would be nothing done. And at least they will expect the true articles of the agreement in Prussia.
Also they have resolved to write to the lord Nieuport to sound the protector, to pass an act or a treaty to oblige each other, that neither he nor this state shall not take any advantage the one over the other in the business of commerce.
The lord Isbrants hath writ, that he would expect the embassadors for Sweden on the 12th of Feb. at Deventer: which hath been laugh'd at here; for the embassy is not ready; they have writ him word what he must expect here.
This day before and after dinner have been very much together the lords prince William and raet pensionary, and among themselves they will agree well enough. The most difficulty will be, in case that the lord Haersolte do part with the office of Drossard of Twent, what satisfaction or reparation he is to have in his honour? for he hath been very much blasted; besides that it is feared, that those of Zealand may be against the agreement, if it happeneth to be against the interest of the prince.
Yesterday till midnight prince William and the raet pensionary were together, to agree the commissioners of Overyssell, whereof at last is resolved a proposition or project, which they have taken ad referendum; and will return back hither against that time, that prince William is to come from Friesland hither.
As to the election of the prince for stadtholder of Overyssell, that is to be delayed till such time that the business of the harmony is to be determined. The lord Haersolte is also to quit the charge of Drossard, and those of Twent however are to declare, that they do hold him an honest man, and by that means repair his honour.
They have again burnt the letter of the correspondent of Stetin, in regard the lord of Sweeryn had chiefly engaged the elector to the agreement with Sweden, and that he was very well rewarded for it; and that the earl of Waldeck was very angry at the agreement, and that the electress was very angry, that the elector had transgressed against the treaty made with the states, yea that that had caused her sickness: which are mere sables; and yet they may do a great deal of harm to the said correspondent, if they be divulged, and withall that Sweden did not yet do any hostility.
The commissioner of Dantzick hath had audience, making some narration of what is past, and in what condition the city is in; and saying that he hath heard, that this state would send some embassadors into Prussia, he required that those embassadors may be instructed to interpose likewise for the said city; and in case that by intercession and an amicable way the business is not to be obtained, that this state would be pleased to name and order some commissioners, with whom he may enter into a more particular conference, and as well hear as make overture of some means to prevent the inconveniencies and any thing else that may be prejudicial as well to the common interest as the said city. Upon which nothing is yet resolved, only that he be desired to deliver his proposition in writing; besides his there was nothing considerable.
Boreel, the Dutch embassador in France, to the states general.
High and Mighty Lords,
There are letters arrived here from Switzerland and from Geneva, which import, that the siege of Rappersweil, undertaken by those of Zurich by themselves, did still continue, when the said post came away; that the besieged behave well; however that the works of the approaches were carryed so far, even to the very walls of the place, so that they work with saps; and it is believed with much appearance of truth, that after the breach is made a general assault will be undertaken; and they are of opinion here, that the same is done already, the success whereof, either on the one or the other side, will be of great consequence. The army of the canton of Bern was at length likewise marching with 14000 men and seven guns; by the bad conduct of the rear-guard they fell into an ambush, whereby the said army was pretty much put in disorder; they had 160 soldiers slain, and their guns taken by the enemy, because some that were not used to the like warlike employment betook themselves to flight. So much is certain, that the besieged in Rappersweil did very much fire and triumph on that account. We hear likewise that the marquis of Caracena has given permission to the Switzer regiments in the territory of Milan, that are in Spanish pay, to go to the assistance of their countrymen, and that the duke of Savoy caused also a vast many troops to march to the frontiers, which gives a great suscipion to some cantons, situated in the neighbourhood, as likewise to the republick of Geneva. This court seems to take the troubles of Switzerland very much to heart; and in order to compose the same by way of accommodation, has appointed a solemn ambassy, wherein the lord Rochesoucault will be employed, who, without the pleurisy, whereof he is at present sick, would have set out already. Here are also tidings that the emperor is fell sick of a dangerous apoplexy. The count of Fuensaldagna goes from the Netherlands to Milan, to be governor there in the place of the marquis of Caracena, who comes to the Netherlands. The duke of Amville, who after the accommodation of my lord duke of Orleans, was sent with monsieur Mancini a nephew of the lord cardinal, to Blois to his royal highnes, are come back with great satisfaction of the court and of themselves: among other things the said Mancini is said to be pre sented by his royal highness with a ring of a considerable value. It seems that the new coin or species called lis, will go on, the deputation and remonstration of the parliament not having met with the desired success, whom the king has anew and seriously forbid, to call any assembly of the chambers, and has as yet refused the recalling of the five exiled members, which they desire with great earnestness: and as to the affair of the coin itself, it has been thought adviseable, that the council of state should issue an ordinance, which accordingly is published, whereby is forbid all opposition and contradiction against this new coin, with prohibition, that no body shall have liberty to raise or to pay away the old gold Louisdors and silver Louises above the usual price of respective ten or three livers under great penalty against the contraveners, as also against those that foment among the people any seditious discourses, as well touching the said coin as any other subjects, whereby the publick tranquillity might be disturbed. Nay that informations shall be taken against any merchants, that shall endeavour to raise the price of their goods, under the pretence of the introduction of the said coin &c. which ordinance causes here much dissatisfaction and troubles. Letters of Franckfort import, that the elector of Mentz was suddenly sent for without knowing the reason why.
A letter of intelligence.
The king having given audience on monday last to the commissioners of the lords of the parliament in the presence of the queen and some great persons of the court, the next day report being made thereof to the parliament, they resolved to defer it wholly to the pleasure of the king, and to make new remonstrances for the return of the exiled counsellors.
The princess royal is very much caressed by the whole court here. Some speak of a marriage between that princess and the duke of Newburgh, who doth sollicit it; and thereupon some say it to be the cause of her coming hither to consult with their majesties, as also the queen her mother. She was desired to be at the dance on wednesday last, but she desired to be excused, saying, that her deceased husband died upon the like day; and in that respect she could take no recreation.
Barriere to the prince of Condé.
I Have so little news to write to your highness, that I hardly know what to write; yet I think it my duty to write to you by every post, though it be only to assure you of the continuation of my services. Monsieur de Marigni will have communicated unto your highness the state of affairs of this country. Since his departure there hath not happened any thing remarkable. They are still preparing here for war, and the fleet is said to be ready.
Monsieur de Bordeaux is not yet returned, and some do make a doubt, whether he will come. I believe, when he is come, that he will hasten my departure; whereof I shall not be angry, since I can be no further serviceable here; and I should be overjoyed to have the happiness to see your highness at Brussels.
From the Dutch embassador Nieupoort.
After the receival of that letter and resolution of their high mightinesses bearing date on the 2d of November last past, concerning the buying of the necessary guns for the use of the new built ships of the state, I have enquired with due cirumspection of sundry merchants what quantity or number, of what caliber and at what price one might gett here, to which a few days after I got the following information, that but few guns, that carried twelve pound and above, could be had; that they were delivered in London at 25 l. sterling per tun (that is to say two thousand pound weight per tun) but that a person, that was about erecting two furnaces upon the coast, had said, that provided one should order a good number of them to be cast, they would come somewhat cheaper.
Eight days ago the council sound good to release upon bail a certain ship of Amsterdam called the Isabella, which was carried into Plymouth before the treaty with France was concluded, coming from Brouage, and bound for St. Malo with a cargo of salt; but upon my farther representation, that there was no reason to detain the same, the council did this morning repeal the said order, and declared the said vessel to be entirely free.
The day before yesterday a certain skipper of Amsterdam was with me, who coming with wines from Nantes, was ask'd near Hoosden whither he was going ? whereupon he had own'd, that he was freighted for Dunkirk, and that he thereupon was carried into the port of Dover. I understood, that he was examined there, and therefore thought meet to ask the copy of his deposition in writing, having observed, that those men sometimes declare their cause otherwise to me, than they have owned before. As soon as I receive the said information, I will do my best to get him free.
This morning the secretary of state acquainted me, that the affair of the marine was so far prepared, that they would soon go into conferences with me on that subject. The indisposition of the lord protector and the absence of some lords of the council have caused a great hindrance in severall affairs.
Nieupoort to the states general.
High And Mighty Lords,
My lords, the ships of this state, which are sitted out at Chatham and other places on the Thames join from time to time those that are in the Downs, and it is thought, that from thence they will join the other ships that are sitted out at Portsmouth, making up in the whole, as I am informed, a number of between 40 or 50 ships, most of them capital ships and frigats.
This week we have at last received tidings here from Barbados and Jamaica: a certain friend has communicated to me a letter of an officer, who is a captain of one of the ships, that sailed thither under the command of major general Sedgwicke, dated in the port of Jamaica on the 8th of November last, importing, that they were arrived on the first of September on the coast of Barbados, without having lost one single man in their voyage thither; and having heard there the unfortunate success of the generals Pen and Venables, they sailed from thence on the 7th to St. Christophers, where having understood the confirmation of the said unpleasing news, they took water and some other refreshments on board, and pursued their course between the island St. Cruz and Virginia, and came on the 22d before St. Domingo, where on a place called cape Tibron on the south side of the island of Hispaniola they landed about 200 men to fetch water, but sound no resistance. On the 28th they saw two English ships, and arrived on the 30th at Jamaica, where they found the militia in a great want of provisions, and that thereby and by other hardships a great many officers and common soldiers had died; however the sailors on board of the ships were most of them in health and better provided. There they understood, that admiral Goodsonn with 8 ships was gone upon an enterprize to the town called Real de Hass, against which he had formed his design; but having missed his aim, was sailed to a small town in the island of Hispaniola called St. Martha, where they had landed under the protection of their canon 400 men sailors and soldiers, and forced the Spaniards to abandon their retrenchments; and coming into the town they sound, that the Spaniards were fled from thence with as much as they could carry, but pursuing the same for above 12 miles up into the country, they had got a good share of the booty, wherewith they were gone on board again, and having embark'd thirty pieces of canon together with the other booty they had fired the town, and went again to sea from that port. I have heard from others, that general Fortescue was also dead, with two lieutenant colonels and divers other officers and soldiers, so that there were not left above 4000 men both sound and sick. There are arrived here two ships from the East Indies, the one from Bantam laden for the account of the company with a good quantity of pepper, benjamin, and cottons, and the other with 175 lasts of pepper from Sumatra on account of some private merchants: the commander with about 30 men died suddenly whilst the same was lading, so that the same was not fully laden; and instead of being bound directly for Leghorn she arrived here, which, as I am informed, will be a great loss to the owners.
A frigat of this state has chased some Biscayers about Stysand, but they saved themselves between the rocks on the coast of Britain; however a small frigat with 8 guns and 60 men is taken and carried into Plymouth. Another English ship has taken another Biscay frigat with 62 men on the coast of France; she kept but 4 men of them on board, and landed the rest near Rochelle. Having heard no further sea news, nor any tidings from Scotland nor Ireland, I conclude, &c.
Lord Mohun's engagement to the protector.
Whereas it pleased his highnes the lord protector to referr my petition to the right
honourable general Disbrowe, and the commissioners for the militia for this county,
in order for exempting of mee from the new tax, and the penaltyes of his highnes late declaration, who proposed to mee, that I should make some declaration of my disclaymer of
Charles Stuart son to the late kinge; I do declare, that I do hold all former governments in theis three nations to be fully abrogated and abolished. And I do disclayme
and renownce Charles Stuart his claym, pretence, or designes; and that I shall with my
life and fortunes oppose him, and his interest, or any of his party, that shall by any
meanes private or publique go about to disturbe the peace of this commonwealth, and
the present governement; and that I shall faythfully obey, and to the utmost of my power
serve, uphold, and defend his highnes the lord protector, and the present governement,
against all pretences, claymes, and opposers whatsoever. And that this is the reall profession of my heart, I am desirous to publish it to the world, as that, which through the
helpe of the Lord I will performe. Wittnes my hand freely,
Earl of Suffex to the protector.
May it please your highnesse,
This day, to my great greefe and amazement, I receaved an order from your highnesse commissioners at Yorke, wholy contrary to those promises of favour and affection, which you were pleas'd to give me, when I had the happinesse to waite last upon your highnesse; and though I will not take upon me to affirm, yet I hope the meritt of my particular case may prompt me to expect such an indulgence (and the continuance of it) as you then afforded.
And it appears wondrous strange unto me, that, (being a person, whose former sufferings and affections have been so well known to your highnesse, and so adjudged by the parliament) I should now, (when I thought my selfe most secure) under your highnesse power, be exposed to more ruin and scorn then the most violent and worst of that party.
This (my Lord) is a thing I cannot believe your highnesse intends, but it is what I resent with much sadnesse: therefore, dear my lord, if it be possible, let this cup passe from me, which if drunke at this time, will inevitably bring with it a ruin on me and my family.
My last and most humble request therefore is unto your highnesse, that if there be no
other way but that I must necessarily passe this tryall, I may have the liberty to be heard
before your highnesse counsell there to make my defence; and that your highnesse will
be graciously pleased in the mean time to give fresh order for my suspension from this
tax; and I shall remain, my lord,
Covent-Garden, February 1, 1655–6.
An extract of a letter from capt. * * dated the 1st of Feb. 1655, from Plymouth.
I Must acquaint you one thing more, which I heare, that the pyrates of Brest have free recourse to that place. Pray speake with mr. secretary about it, that if it be soe, I humbly offer it to consideration, whether some of your owne frigotts, upon notice thereof, may not goe into your harbour, and destroy them, or into any other port in France. Swarte and two others have lately taken three vessels, one of this port, the others of Bristoll and Barnestaple.
Major general Worsley to secretary Thurloe.
Yours bearinge date January 29 I received, and am glad to heare off your approbation off our actings; and for doeinge it effectually by the helpe of the Lord, wee resolved not to be wanting in that, but to make it our study night and day, how to effect it to the purpose. Since our comeinge to this towne wee have added something to the extraordinary tax, and have sent out our orders for some more, that wee have found out. Wee have sent out these orders up and downe the county with some adition, and have noe less resolution here then elswhere to carry it on to the purpose, if the Lord be with us and bless us. Wee have received some articles against George Midleton esq; sometime sir George Midleton, and about 14 or 16 more. Wee have alredy examined some to the articles, and have sent out orders to apprehend the bodies of Midleton, and most of the rest in this county. Those in other countyes I shall give notis of, and of our proceedings to the major generall there. Wee are verilie perswaded, wee shall find most of them guilty within the first perticular. Wee have sent to secure their estates both reall and personall till a farther tryall. Wee have sent for all witnesses to be in the next meetinge, at which time wee shall proceed to trye the businese. I have had many sad complaints against the attorneyes in this county, and had against this meetinge sent summons out to all attorneyes that were delinquents or papis; and they apereinge yesterday, I have first taken the bonds ordered by the counsell; another bond, that they should never act any more as an attorney or solicitor in this commonwealth, without spetiall lycense from his highnese and his counsell, or either of them; and the most of them have done this, onely one, that did not apeare, which we have sent to apprehend. I shal be glad to receive those examinations of Licester and the rest. Tuesday next wee meet for the cittie of Chester to receive an account of our orders. I hope to give a very good account of that The monday following wee meet att Midlewich for the county; on wednesday after at Knutsford to take securitie of the county, and on fryday att Boulton, where I intend to muster the troopes, and make a purge, for it needs it: then within 3 or 4 dayes towards Stafford. I shall from time to time give you an account of our proceeds. Wee very much want commissioners to be aded to the ordinary for scandalouse ministers. Wee were glad to disapoint many men this day upon that account, because wee could not get a quorum. I have sent your honour a list for all the thre countyes. I would not be too tedious, because I know your burthen; and therefore I'le only subscribe myself, as indeed I am,
Preston, Feb. 1, 1655.
Major general Whalley to secretary Thurloe.
I shall not trouble you at this present more, then to returne you my thankes for your newes, and have sent you this enclosed from one of our captains of the militia in Lyncolnshire. I prayse God I can say it, not out of vayne glory to myselfe, but that you may take notice, God hath in a very great measure blest our indeavours, and truly not onely in that county, but in all the rest. The hearts of many good men formerly through misunderstanding disafected to his highnes, are gayned to him. I thinke I shal be enforct to come to London, both concerning some buysnes I have there, as also to bring down my famyly, if his highnes entend to continue us in this employment, it requiring our constant attendance, if we effectually carry on our buysnes.
I have sent you here a copye of the examination of col. Gilbye, a dangerous enemie, and one that can informe you of the whole designe and rising at Rufford. Wee have committed him to the goale at Nottingham, where major Scot for the same buysnes is likewise committed, one as bad as hee. I thinke it would be very necessary for you to send for them. Wee have likewise sent Scicile Cooper to the goale for the same. Wee have 3 or 4 idle, loose, and desperate rogues in the goale at Lyncolne. Wee are now attending the gathering such up. I pray you cleare our prysons.
I send you an addition of some gentlemen to be put in commission for Lyncolnshire.
Though they be most of them already in, yet that you would add them for the devisions
mentioned, but not put them out of those, where before they were. Your leters at present will fynde me at Nottingham, being going thither. I am
Yours most affectionately,
|Kesternen||Mr. Tho. Randes,|
|Mr. Samuel Cust.|
|Holland||—More, doctor of physick,|
Commissioner Pels to the states general.
High and mighty lords,
Since my last of the ninth of February, it is confirmed from several places out of Poland, that the king of Poland hath already an army together of 40,000 men, of all manner of people. These troops are near Lantschut, Vielun, and between Cracow and Lemborgh. His majesty sends forth patents, that all the nobility should come in to him, and betake themselves to their arms. The Swedish armies and troops are also join'd, and the Swedish forces, that were in Prussia since the agreement made between him and the king of Sweden, are joined with the Brandenburg forces, and march'd towards Poland; and his majesty of Sweden is gone for Thorn, to endeavour to compose in the beginning this distemper as much as is possible.
Commissioner Pells to the states general.
High and mighty lords,
This post affords no great matters to write upon. The electress of Brandenburg is recovering. Hitherto we hear no certainty of the treaty, which is said to be concluded. The Swedish troops, for the greatest part, are marching out of the ducal part, one part of them towards Poland and Warsaw, (whom his majesty is said to accompany) and the rest hither into the Royal Prussia. The electoral garrison has not yet lest Marienburg; we expect daily to hear, how it will go there. These districts here are oppressed with heavy contributions and extortions by the Swedish troops, and threatned in default of payment with fire and destruction. The Swedish chancellor is said to be again arrived at Elbing. And the English embassador has taken leave of the king to go home.
Bordeaux to his secretary de la Bastide.
I Have only time to give you notice of the reception of yours of 7th current, and to tell you, that I will shew to the cardinal the letter of coll. Cooke. It is in effect, that he is resolved to serve us. The treaty must be agreed on before my departure, whereof you are to give him notice.
Major general Disbrowe and other commissioners to the protector.
May it please your highness,
Having received the inclosed from the lord Mohun, and in the judgment of charity cannot but deem, that it proceeds heartily and freely from him; in consideration whereof we humbly crave the liberty to present it to your highness's view, and if it may stand with your approbation that his additional tax may be remitted, upon your highness's signification, it shall be observed by
Wotton in Cornwall,
Feb. 2, 1655.
Major general Goffe to secretary Thurloe.
I Have received yours of the 31st of January, with 3 letters inclosed signed by his highnes, which I suppose should have beene directed to my selfe, and therefore I have made bould to cause a superscription to be added for the satisfaction of others, to whom it may be necessary for mee to shew them. I shall, to the utmost of my power, observe the commands his highnes hath laied upon mee therein. I have allready advised with some of the justices, that live in this towne, about that of the seamen; and wee are of opinion, that the best way to promote the service, will bee to summon the justices from there several devisions to meete together, and then I may communicate his highnes pleasure with more effect, and with better respect to the gentlemen, then if I should barely issue out my warrant; and then every one may undertake his appoynted bounds, as it shall be mutually agreed on; and then alsoe I may have opportunity to speake to them about some other things, which I am required by my instructions, and his highnes other letter, to looke after: wendseday next is our day appoynted for that meeting. On fryday I have appoynted business with the commissioners, and the weeke after I intend, if the Lord please, to spend with the justices in Sussex; which I hope will not be too late for the service of the fleete, att least for those, that will be last ready. What is to be done in the cinque ports, I hope major general Kelsey will have some influence upon, though in Sussex. I tell you the way of my intended proceedings, that if you like them not, I may be helped by your counsell, for I am heere much alone, and have not beene formerly acquainted with this kind of worke, but I shall doe my uttmost, and leave the successe to God.
As for paying of the militia troopes in the way as it is now putt, it will be for his highnes service; for whereas I am appoynted to pay 6 monthes pay, or as farr as it will goe, the truth is, the money raysed in this assosiation will not (after the necessary charges incident to the service shall be deducted) amount to above 3 months pay; for though I am not prepared to send an exact account, yett I doe clearly find, that Sussex will not amount to above 1500 l. per ann. Hampshire 1000 l. per ann. and Berks will, I hope, rise to 1000 l. per ann. which for the two first counties is but just half as much as will pay the troopes. Indeed in the other, if the money be brought in, it may come neare the money appoynted to pay that troope; but then there will be nothing left to discharge the officers belonging to the commissioners of the 3 counties, (which as his highnes letter seemeth to imply, wee are alsoe to satisfie out of this money, though we are not directed by what rule we shall proceed in paying them) soe that I shall not have above three monthes pay for the 5 troopes in Hampshire and Sussex; and I feare the troopes in Berkes will be very unwilling to parte with the money raysed there, to be paide into another country; or if they should, what they cann afford will be inconsiderable among the 5 troopes. But, sir, that which will bee the greate inconveniency in my humble opinion is this, that if the same letters be sent to the other assosiations, some of them will pay 6 monthes, some 5 monthes, some 4, and some 3, and it may be some not soe much, which will be a very great dissatisfaction to those souldiers who are under-paid, and a great prejudice to that major gen. and captaines, to whom they belong. I shall therefore take the humble bouldnes to offer, that all the money raysed upon this account may be brought to the common treasury; and that wee may all be paide alike out of the saide treasury; or ellse I feare those assosiations, that rayse least money, will have such a pittyfull militia, that the major gen. will have little honour or comfort in commanding them, and which is worse, the publicke safety litle advantaged by them. You see how freely I deliver my thoughts to you, which I doe in the discharge of my duty; and having soe donn, I leave the issue to God, and (if you please) his highnes and the counsell's further consideration, humbly desireing, that it may be considered, how necessary it will be to lett the whole militia of the nation, as well as of the several assosiations, be paide in an equality of proportion.
I am sorry to heare of the death of major generall Fortescue and others. God can yett
raise that designe out of the dust, and make it turne to his prayse, and the comfort of
those, that love the Lord Jesus Christ, and wayght for the ruine of Antichrist. But I feare
I shall make my letter soe long, you will be afraide to read it, and therefore shall here
commend you to the care of our Lord Jesus Christ, and remaine,
Winchester, February 2, 1655.
Major general Berry to secretary Thurloe.
I Have received yours, and perceive you looke upon me as a decliner of my duety. I pray you tell my lord, he needs not spurre a free horse. I have as much trouble in my selfe for my absence from Wales, as he hath anger; and had it beene in my charge before my journey was appointed, I should have found difficulty in deserting it (as you terme it.) But truly, sir, not looking for such an addition to my former taske, which was suddenly undertaken, I was neither provided at home nor abroad for such a worke; and therefore at that time wanting instructions, (which I have since received) and some other conveniences, (to make the mare to goe) I thought I might make a litle digression without offence; But pray his highnes to sett his heart at rest, and rather send his thoughts to heaven for me, to helpe me in answering his expectation, which I shall without any delay at all goe about. I intend to be on my way thither on monday, and to lose noe time, 'till South Wales be as forward in their busines as others. I beseech you order some way to supply us with money; otherwise I must needes make use of our owne treasury, which I am loath to doe without orders. If my lord thinke to keepe me alwayse in Wales, he must allowe me a house; I am scarce rich enough to buy or build. If he will repayre Ludlow castle, I will be his tenant. I pray you present my humble respects to him, and tell him, I am his faithfull servant, and your cordiall freind,
Saturday, Feb. 2, 1655.
Col. Rob. Lilburne to secretary Thurloe.
The commissioners here have sent a letter to the lords commissioners of the great seale, whereof this inclosed is a copie; and least other great affairs should prevent them from giveing their order, I make bold to entreate your help therein.
I much doubt, you will not get much out of major Waters, by reason we have proceeded against his wife here; I doubt also George Lisson is as you speake him. We have here
summon'd him, but he does not appear; and I wish you would please to advise me, what
is fit to do against him; for I think he is not worthy of your favour above. I thought
you had got something considerable from him, because you gave him liberty; and also
that sir Phillip Mountaine (as he is called) had made some further discoveryes concerning
the late plott, that might have given the commissioners here some further light as to their
proceedings. They have now adjourned for 10 days, and in that interim I go to Durham,
to proceed against the plotters there, where (I am doubtfull) the mistery of that darkness
will not so clearly appear. When I saw the newes book you were pleased to send inclosed
in your last, I began to wonder, how your great occasions would give you leave to remember me with such a token; but upon the perusall finding much more than ordinary,
it rejoiceth me exceedingly; and I must intreat you to give me leave to return you the
acknowledgements of your civilities unto,
York, Feb. 2, 1655.
He that I would have recommended to the examiner's place in Durham is now called up (as I hear) to an office in the custom-house above; but if you will give me that leave, as you seem to allow me, to name an honest ingenious young man, one that is acquainted with proceedings in chancery, whose father was a captain in the lord of Essex's time in the parliament service, I shall intreat you to put the son of mr. John Billiard in the patent for the examiners's place.
De Vries, the Dutch resident in Denmark, to the states general.
High and Mighty Lords,
Yesterday was here the secretary of the embassadors of your high and mighty lordships to this crown, and brought to the lord chancellor and to me notice in a letter of their arrival at Roschild; whereupon the lord chancellor returned an answer, which the secretary could not stay to take with him, in regard he hasten'd to return back to Roschild that night; so that I by occasion desired the lord chancellor to acquaint me after what manner the said lords embassadors would be received, and that I my self would deliver his answer to the said lords embassadors, being ready to depart immediately for Roschild; so that having his letter, I sent it away, signifying unto their lordships, how they will be met out of this city by one of the lords of the council, and then received into the king's coach, and brought to a house near the fort ready accommodated, where they are to be defrayed three days, before they are to have audience of his majesty.
The envoy from Dantzick to the states general.
High And Mighty Gracious Lords,
Your high and mighty lordships may be pleased to consider, how that the two kingdoms of Poland and Sweden being fallen into a dangerous and far-seeing war, whereby the crown of Poland with its incorporated countries and towns is imbroil'd, not only to the great prejudice of their proprietors, but also to the considerable prejudice of others highly interessed. And though it was hoped, that all misunderstandings would have been decided by a good agreement, yet it hath happen'd so, that not only all hope hath failed, but also the hostility hath been such between them, that the crown of Poland and the annexed countries have suffered very great destruction and prejudice, especially the city of Dantzick hindered in its commerce and privileges both by sea and land; yea block'd up in such a manner, as if they would wholly subdue them, and force them to the last extremity. Wherefore to represent unto your high and mighty lordships their condition, the magistrates of the city of Dantzick thought fit humbly to offer to your high and mighty lordships, that in regard of the common commerce, wherein your high and mighty lordships are highly concerned, that your high and mighty lordships would be pleased to favour the said city with your usual affection, which you have always shewn towards them. And in regard your high and mighty lordships are already resolved to endeavour to make an accommodation between the said kings, by sending an extraordinary embassy to Poland; wherefore the magistrates of Dantzick do humbly desire, that the lords embassadors, at their happy arrival in Prussia, would be pleased to enter into Dantzick, and with their acceptable presence make the city to rejoice, and faithfully to communicate what is necessary for the furthering and advancing of the common correspondence; and especially in case of a mediation, that they would take in and preserve the interests and sworn privileges of that city; but if so be in the mean time that hostilities do continue, your high and mighty lordships may be pleased to consider, how the said city may be preserved, and defended in its commerce and privileges. Now in regard this will require the consideration of several particulars, your high and mighty lordships are desired to appoint some commissioners to communicate with him about the same. In the mean time your high and mighty lordships may remain assured, that the magistrates and city of Dantzick have concluded to be faithful to the king and crown of Poland according to their oaths; that so they may be able to answer it before God, before the world, and before the high interessed governments. I hope your high and mighty lordships will take such just resolutions as will tend to their honour, to the advantage of the common interest, and such as will be acceptable to all good confiding persons.
A letter of intelligence.
I Am desired by mr. John Borrows in Bayonne to advise you, that as yet the St. Paul doth not appeare there, and that the Brest frigats are lately come to St. Sebastian, and have taken a ship of London of 16 guns laden with 300 pipes of Canary wines, and carried her into the Groyne in Gallicia, and is to bring them to St. Sebastian to sell them there. God comfort the interessed. There are several Biscayners abroad about these coasts, which doe much prejudice our trade. It were good my lord protector would take it into consideration, and send some frigates to cleanse our coasts: beinge the needfull at present, I kindly salute you, and rest
Sir, your servant at command,
Lord Broghill to secretary Thurloe.
This gentelman lieutenant colonel Brayne, governor of Loghabber, is a person of parts, honnesty, affectionate to the government, and one I have found verry serviceable heere. This oblidges me to recommend him to your favor. He has an arreares of about 1000 pound, which the gentleman has writ unto his highness alone, beseechinge him to order the payment therof upon the forfited funds in this nation; the which I humbly joyne and beg your furtherance, if you esteeme it reasonable. Whatever may be the event, a speedy dispatch will be an obligation to him, and usefull to the publike, for his charge and trust is greate, and I feare in his absence, that place, which keepes all the highlands in awe, will not be soe ordered by any of the officers, as it would be by himselfe. I mooved the councill concerning the changeinge of the shires in the highlands, who upon the reasons, which accompanyed the motion, fully closed with it, and have appoynted me to write a letter in their name to his highness and the councill, which I have done; and the rather I have chosen this oportunity, because lieutenant colonel Brayne will be reddy to answer thos objections, we doubt not but my lord Argile's interest will invite him to make. Colonel Brayne will fully, I question not, cleere the thinge unto you; and then your assistance therin is also beg'd, as that, which will much contribute to the peace and quiet of thos wilde places, at left in the opinion of, sir,
Edenb. Feb. 4, 155.
J. Roche to secretary Thurloe.
When my lord of Broghill and you, some weekes since, assured me, that his highnes was pleased to grante licence unto the lord of Muskery, in pursuance of his articles, to transporte 5000 Irish for the king of Poland's service, I did imediatly not onely certifie the same unto his lordshipp, but withall desired him to loose noe tyme in makeing his capitulation, being consident the licence from his highnes would bee in a readines to bee sent his lordship very soone; whereuppon he fourthwith percloased an agreement with the king of Poland's ambassador at Paris, and hee sent an express to give the king and courte notice thereof, from whom a returne is dailly expected; but if in the interim my lord of Muskery hath not his licence to produce, you may imaggen how great a prejudice it may draw uppon his interest and creadit; to prevent which I humbly begg, that your honor will bee pleased to dispatch the licence, to the ende I may hasten it unto him, and you shall herein everlastingly oblige my lord, and sir,
February 4, 1655.
C. Davison to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your honor,
Had I been sent for in all that time, after I was committed hither, or had my leter come to your honor's hands, I had given your honor such account of affaires, as would easily have removed those jealousies were conceived against me, and prevented that mischeife, which happned since. I know now the law must passe upon me, and shall therefore say the lesse, left it should seeme to proceed from feare of death, or to be extorted from me through necessitie or constraint. If upon a faire and legall tryall (which I humbly begge) it shall please God to acquit me, I shall then use that freedome and ingenuitie, which I intended at first, provided what I say be not put into any other hands than his highnes's and your honor's. I shall not give your honor further trouble at present than this intimation, that the sooner I am cleared, the sooner I shall be in a capacitie of doeing such service as may be expected from
From the dungeon in St. James's, Feb. 4, 1655.
Major general Disbrowe to secretary Thurloe.
I had yours with authority from his highness to muster the militia forces, and to pay them, which I shall accordingly doe, and then give his highness an account thereof. I have likewise received command relateing to the sherrifs, justices, and juries, and shall do my utmost in it; though when I have don all, I fear it will be to litle purpose. I shall respit my reasons untill I come in person; however nothing shall be wanting in me to obtain a reformation therein. I am now intending for Exon, where I shall spend 3 or 4 days in order to the compleating of the work there, and then away for Chard, and so to Dorchester, where I should be glad to hear from, and if it be possible to receive his highness order for my return; for in my understanding I have done as much as in me lyes to effectuate the commands of his highness, which is and shall be the resolution of him, who is Plymouth, Feb. 4, 1655.
Major general Haynes to mr. Malyn.
Mr. Anthony Browne haveing given bond, with two sufficient securyties, according to the order of his highness in that behalfe; and understanding that the said mr. Browne did formerly seale a bond of the same import, which remaines in your hands, I desire you would deliver the said bond to mr. Vaughan, servant to mr. Dickenson, which is all from,
Somerset-house, Feb. 4, 1655.