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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March (8 of 8)
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
There hath been a complaint made by some merchants trading upon the Meuse, of the great exactions, which those of the prince of Condé's party make. Whereupon is resolved, that the embassador of Spain shall be spoken to about it.
This day Holland, by the mouth of the lord Beverning, did cause to be refuted the arguments those of Zealand have inserted in their long answer, which they gave to the lords Vander Steen and other commissioners of the states general on the 23d of March.
And it was proposed to send away the men of war relating to the 48 ships, as they grow ready, to sail towards the Sound. Guelder, Holland, and Groningen were for their sending of them away: Zealand, Utrecht, and Overyssell amplius deliberandum censebant, so that Friesland being president, did decide the business, and concluded for their going out.
The council of state hath advised not to take three men out of those companies which have but fifty men: but to take as many out of such companies as are much stronger and more numerous as will serve to furnish the fleet of 48 ships. The fast–day is still deferred.
According to the letters of the 28 February/9 March from Warsaw, the king of Sweden was before Zomois besieging it, and the king of Poland was at Caminieck Podolsky, so that of the news of the great battle there is no certainty.
They agreed and concluded to day to keep the day of fast and prayer upon wednesday next come 3 weeks. I am told that every fast day doth cost sixteen thousand guilders, for the same is signified to all towns and villages, which doth require a great expence.
The assembly of Holland is to separate on thursday or friday next, to meet again presently after Easter; about that time, as they conceive, they shall hear news of the arrival of their embassadors at the court of Sweden.
Those of Amsterdam have proposed, that the council of the nobility ought to be triennial, as well as those of the cities. But the nobility demanded time to consider and deliberate upon it; saying likewise, that the nobility is in possession to perpetuate this charge.
This morning the Hague was filled with two great and very acceptable news to most here. First, that the Swedes were defeated on the 4th of March stilo novo, near to Zamoise or Sambor, the king, the earls of Wittenberg, of Douglas, the landgrave of Darmstadt, dead, &c. The other news, of the happy arrival of the silver fleet; but in regard the Spaniards themselves knew nothing certain of the second, so likewise I fear that the first is also very doubtful, for many circumstances, and the letter of Breslau of the 18/8 March doth speak quite otherwise: likewise they do differ much about the death of the king.
In regard that the lords of Merode and of Renswoude proposed a complaint to the embassador of Spain, concerning certain impositions, wherewith the Hollanders are charged in Spain; report was made yesterday, that his excellency made answer, that at Madrid they expected an embassador from this state; and when he was told, that this state had named a minister to reside constantly at Brussels, he said, that was nothing, that to do well they ought to send an embassador into Spain. There was a great deal of stir yesterday about the pay and money, which is due to the officers and soldiers that came from Brazil; yea some of them gave threatning words, and one drew his sword upon the president of the council of the state, the lord Schagen (de cujus side tamen dubitatur.) Whereupon those of Holland are desired to inform themselves about it, and to cause them to be punished. The council of state being desired to cause some money to be appointed for the payment of the said men, (for they are desperate) make answer, that they know not where to raise it, unless they resolve to farm the passage money, which would bring in 6000 guilders per ann. to which all the provinces are inclined, except the city of Dort and some adjacent places.
The elector of Brandenburg hath also writ from Koningsberg of the 24th of March stilo novo, that the news of the defeat of the Swedes is a meer report, and such a one as none will be the authors of it; only that his sister the dutchess of Courland had writ it to him from Mittau; saying that the same was brought thither from Riga.
If you will compute the time and place of the news, for it to come from Lemberg to Riga, from Riga to Mittau, Koningsberg, and Dantzick to these parts, it may be said, that at the same time the news might have come from Lemberg by the way of Vienna and Breslau hither, consequently nothing coming from Vienna and Breslau, the news is suspected to some. Yet it is to be wish'd, that the defeat may prove true; for upon the exchange of Amsterdam the merchants did declare there such an extraordinary joy for the same, that they were near to make bonfires at noon–day. And if the Swedes be not defeated, but remain masters of Prussia, it is to be feared, that they will resent it upon the merchants.
The commissioners of the elector of Cologne have yet had no conference. The credentials and memorandum of the commissioners of Bruges are referred to the council of state. Those of Zealand do but laugh at them.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
In case that the Swedes are defeated, the litigation and care for the tolls and customs in Prussia will cease of themselves, and the defeat may be such, that this state will savour more the Swedes than the Polanders; so that I do not see that the fleet and its expence will be necessary.
But likewise it is true, that I cannot yet see any certainty thereof. And those that are affected to Poland say, that the Swedes (having occupied all the posts in Poland) do keep all the letters; but then whence cometh this news if the passages be stopt? and in effect, it is no news, for it hath been already writ these three or four posts by some or the other to the contrary. The chief thing which maketh me to doubt of it is, that by all the letters from Vienna and Breslau they have writ, that the king of Poland had no forces together, that do deserve mentioning, yea, that he had no body of an army: otherwise at Vienna and Breslau they are imperial enough, being subject to the emperor, and the emperor is akin and a friend of king Casimir. It is said, that Koniecpolsky with 4000 Quartianers serving the king of Sweden deserted him just when the battle begun, charging the Swedes in the rear, whilst that Ksarneky charged them in the front; but many days before the battle it was written, that such a thing would be, and since it is writ that such a thing was done. It is said, that Koniecpolsky with his Quartianers did demand their dismission in an amicable way, and with the good pleasure of the king: crgo, they were not in the rear at the time of the battle; likewise they do vary very much in the particulars.
But all this is but discourse and conjectures; as also that the Swedish troops do march out of Prussia towards Thorn, which is a sign, that the king is in a bad condition, and that they are sending relief to him; and in the mean time the Swedes assure the contrary, and that the said troops joined with some of the elector's, go towards Dantzick and Putske to assiege the one, or block the other.
It is very much to be wished, that the defeat of the Swedes be true, for if the contrary be true, the king, (as the cat in Æsop's fables seigning herself dead to see the countenance of the rats) and hearing the great rejoicing that was upon the exchange at Amsterdam by reason thereof, will one day remember it. In the mean time it is afsured, that the business is of very great importance to Amsterdam: there be whole streets that do live, flourish, and subsist by this Baltick commerce, and all those people would be sick of a hectick fever, in case that the king of Sweden had the will and power to deprive them of the said commerce. Now of his will they do not doubt at Amsterdam, and it is a very hard matter to beat them off of this opinion, and to take away this impression. I know not what to say to it, but if it be so much important unto them, I would hide and conceal it more; I would not make so much stir about it, for they do divulge too much that secret, Tacite pasci si posset corvus.
Monsieur Courtin to mons. de Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
I make no doubt but the report, which hath infected these provinces of a total defeat of the king of Sweden by the Cossacks, and likewise of his death, hath run as far as England; but it is probable they are not so credulous there as they are here, and that upon a report so doubtful. They will not have discovered themselves as some do here; as soon as the news came, it was presently concluded, that in the end the commerce of the Baltick sea would be free and secured to this state, without putting themselves to the charges of setting forth so great a fleet as was intended. But this news is not altogether certain, for there are some letters that say, that the king of Sweden hath the day, and that the former news came from Dantzick. It is held here of a certain, that the protector hath concluded with Sweden to the prejudice of this state; and that which doth confirm this news is, that the English do molest their trade.
A letter of Boreel, the Dutch embassador in France.
The archbishop of Sens made the speech: the whole discourse was against those of the religion in general, as well without as within the kingdom; the substance of his speech consisted in what followeth. That they did request in the highest name, that the king, as the first son of the church, with all his power and means would but maintain, and cause to be maintained, the Romish religion, and consequently renounce all amity, confederacies, and alliances with heretick princes and commonwealths; amongst which were named Germany, their high and mighty lordships the states, that of England, and the king of Sweden's nomination; and on the contrary, that his majesty would bend and use his power and authority for the prosperity of the church, and against all such as fight against the same.
3. That the king would be pleased not to give so much power and authority to those that are not of the Roman catholick religion, nor admit of them into any charge, especially military, to which several are advanced of sinister opinions, (who were named) who had the supreme command of the king's army, and were trusted with the chiefest government of the most important towns, not without great danger of the kingdom and the catholick Roman religion. In case that his majesty would be pleased to have regard to this, that then the clergy would resolve to assist him with any extraordinary sum yearly for the maintaining of a considerable and formidable army.
The king, I am told, replied not one word to it, but turned him about and went away; and that the cardinal should have made answer for him, that the king did not want any such remonstrance, but a considerable sum of the clergy's money, which were altogether requisite to maintain the honour of the king and kingdom, and the preservation and maintenance of the catholick religion.
The Dutch embassadors going for Sweden to the states general.
High and mighty lords,
We found our selves necessitated to continue here hitherto, in regard we could not meet with any opportunity neither by land nor water, for transporting of our baggage to the town of Dantzick, all the waggons being gone a while since with wines to Thorn and to other places with necessaries for the service of the king of Sweden and the skippers; they demand an excessive freight, by reason here are but two or three at present, and being also afraid lest their ships should be seized upon by the Swedes, who they say lie with some ships before the harbour of Dantzick; so that we are forced to agree with the waggoners who brought us hither from Lubeck at their own rates, and to morrow we intend to continue our journey, God willing.
The next day after our arrival here, we thought it our duty to salute, by our secretary, the lord John Van Oxenstiern, who is here residing at present in the quality of legatus extraordinarius regis & coronæ Sueciæ per universam Germaniam, and to signify unto him, that we represent your high and mighty lordships as embassadors extraordinary to the king of Sweden, and that we would not omit to acquaint him, that we were resolved to pursue our journey to that place, where his majesty is residing, with as much speed as may be, and to offer to his lordship the presentation of the services and affections of our persons in particular. The said lord embassador did cause us to be re–saluted the same day by his steward, in very civil terms; and this day he came to compliment us in person at our own lodgings, and did use many honourable expressions of affection to your high and mighty lordships, protesting the good intention of the king his master to continue the ancient amity and alliance with your high and mighty lordships. In our visit to him, we made the same declaration to him on the behalf of your high and mighty lordships, and parted with mutual satisfaction of each other. The said legatus did assure us there had been no general battle between the two crowns, but that all the reports were false and groundless.
Nieuport, the Dutch embassador in England, to Ruysch.
Last saturday morning was sent unto me the enclosed resolution taken the day before by the council at White–hall, and on monday last I received a letter from the lord secretary of state, wherein his honour writ, that the paper containing the articles of the maritime treaty drawn up in the behalf of their high and mighty lordships was misplaced, and desired that I would let him have a copy thereof, causing enquiry to be made likewise of my health; whereupon I sent him that same night a letter with a copy of the articles. And in regard, God be thanked, I found myself well again, I desired a conference upon that subject. The next day he writ me word, that he, by reason of some casual affairs, was necessitated to desire me to defer the conference for that day, till the next, at which time I should not fail of a conference. Whereupon I answered, I would keep myself ready; and the day before yesterday the lords Wolseley, Strickland, and Jones, and the said secretary came to me: being sat, the said lord Wolseley said, that the lord protector and the council being inclined on their side sincerely to observe the peace and amity with their high and mighty lordships, and having taken into serious consideration the remonstrance made by me concerning some particular complaints about the bringing in and detaining of ships, and seriously considered about some expedients for the preventing thereof; and that they had ripely examined that, which their high and mighty lordships had proposed upon that subject, and that they were now desired and ordered to communicate to me certain articles for the regulating of the navigation and commerce in the behalf of the lord protector and the council; which being read, they delivered them to me, saying, that they did almost agree verbatim with those delivered by me. Whereupon having given thanks to the said lords for the trouble, I answered, that I had observed in the reading thereof, that of some essential points there was no mention made at all; and that in some articles there were such general expressions used, that the good intention of preventing complaints for the future could in no wise be drawn and secured thereby, but that I believed their lordships did propose the said articles in that manner, that we might confer them with those of their high and mighty lordships for to produce out of them according to reason and justice a common project, which might be produced with some effect to their high and mighty lordships; adding withal, that I did believe their lordships would give way to reason and justice, and that they would not do to such neighbours and allies, no otherwise, than as they would be done unto. I related in short upon what grounds the treaty was made with Spain, assuring them, that their high and mighty lordships did aim at nothing else but the preventing of discontents: the secretary of state replied, that it was reasonable, that I should take time to examine further that writing which they brought me, and that they would willingly hear my reasons and considerations concerning the same, and confer with me again upon that subject, when I thought fit; that they could assure me of the amity and good affection of the lord protector and the whole council, but that they could not imagine, that their high and mighty lordships should think fit at present to discourage them in a war, which hath such a considerable reflection upon the whole interest of the evangelical religion, and being that they should give place to that reason, and deny no reciprocacy. God willing, the next week I hope to continue the conference; in the mean time I durst not send over this raw and imperfect negotiation, which I hope to effect to their high and mighty lordships good intention.
Commissioner Pels to the states general.
High and mighty lords,
There are at last letters arrived from his majesty of Poland and the secretary of this town, dated the 16th of March from Lemburg; they make no mention of any great rencounter nor the loss of the Swede artillery, only that they have had several skirmishes, and amongst the rest the Polish general Czarnitski had ruined a thousand Swedes, being the regiment of the earl Woldemar, who was also killed. The king of Sweden could not take the fort of Samos, and both armies of the kings lie now between Lemburg, Polemist and Jarislau, near one another, so that we shall suddenly hear of a general battle. The king of Poland writes his army to be 28, or 30000 strong, besides the Cossacks and Tartars, who cannot appear till the grass be grown; the Polanders have but poor artillery, their men are good. The Swedes strengthen themselves all what they can, and draw as many men and artillery out of their garrisons, as they can possibly spare.
A paper of the states of Friesland, read the 8th of April 1656. [N. S.]
The states of Friesland with ripe deliberation having examined the letter of their high and mighty lordships of the 13th Jan. 1656, and considered the present constitution of affairs, which doth necessarily require the same, have consented and do consent, by these presents, in the equipage of the extraordinary fleet of war against the spring, and to equip and send the same to sea with as much speed as may be, and the same to be paid and maintained out of the proceeds of the last money and safe–conduct money; and if the equipage should exceed the proceed thereof, then we do hereby authorize their high and mighty lordships to raise that which is wanting upon all the respective provinces.
Extract out of the resolutions of the lords states of Holland.
The raet pensionary rememorated the assembly, that upon the 4th of the last month, upon occasion of communication of a certain letter writ to him by the lord embassador Beuningen from Copenhagen on the 26th of March last, by their high and mighty lordships commission, was decreed upon the lords commissioners for the Danish affairs; wherein amongst the rest also something was taken into consideration, which ought to be resolved upon before the adjourning of this present assembly of their noble great lordships; causing likewise to be read several articles of the treaty of redemption of the tolls in the Sound, made the in year 1649 by this state with the king of Denmark; as also reflecting upon the act of recision made on the 29th of Sept. 1653. Whereupon being debated it is resolved, that there shall be furthered in the generality in the behalf of their noble great lordships, to the end by their high and mighty lordships in pursuance of what was formerly given by a resolution of the 15th July 1653 to the lord Kayser deceased, in the quality as extraordinary commissioner of this state to the king and crown of Denmark, the lords embassadors of this state at present in Denmark may be writ unto, that they upon occasion of those affairs, which they are there to negotiate in pursuance of the foregoing resolution of the 28th of the last month, about the corroborating of the foregoing treaty made by their high and mighty lordships in the year 1649 with the king of Denmark, which they are to endeavour to renew and confirm, or to agree and contract for all the articles of the said treaty of redemption of the tolls in the Sound, which with the said decision do not immediately happen to fall, and for all the contents of the 7th article thereof; for as much by the same on the side of Denmark is promised in effect, under certain precautions, that this shall not be hindered, the exercise of the natural right, the same belonging unto them amongst the rest, according to opportunity of their state affairs to pass with men of war through the Sound or Belt into the east sea; together for all such other points and articles, as they according to their usual experience shall judge useful and obtainable for the benefit and commodiousness of the commerce and navigation of the good inhabitants of these countries, and they may make use of, in regard of the renovation of the said 4th article: using also their utmost circumspection, that it may not appear that their high and mighty lordships do make any doubt of the strength and virtue of their said natural right.
Marigny to monsieur Stouppe.
If men did that which I wish for our friend, he would not languish so long as he doth, and they would do right to his merits. The prince is at Antwerp to receive some money. I prest him to remember him. We shall see how he will use him. There are bills come for four hundred thousand escus for don John.
Marigny to Barriere.
When I delivered your letter to his highness, I desired him to remember your business was as pressing as any. I desired monsieur de Viole to put his highness in mind of it, when he is at Antwerp. You will see now how his highness will use you. It is true that the king of England hath been here incognito, and he is still lodged in the park. The marquiss of Ormond is likewise with him, and the duke of Buckingham hath been for these three days at the countess of Nieuport's.
Here is news that the king of Poland hath won a great victory, 12000 Swedes killed upon the place, the generals Wittenburg and Douglas killed, and the king of Sweden had like to have been taken; he is also dangerously wounded. The archduke had this news sent him.
An intercepted letter to monsieur White.
From mr. Petit.
Thursday mr. Bignon (who was one of his majesty's general attornies in this parliament) died, as also mr. de Cumont counsellor in the same assembly; they are much bewailed of every body, but chiefly the first, who was taken to be one of the most discreet and wisest men of France. His majesty has been pleased to prefer the said attorney's son in his father's place.
Yesterday the parliament (being no longer able to temporize about the business of coining, which doth daily raise new pleas at court) assembled to bring some remedy thereunto, and resolved accordingly; first, that most humble remonstrances should be made unto the king by word of mouth and in writing upon this subject, and for the execution of what is specified thereof by the orders. Secondly, that the lieutenants civil, prevost of merchants, judges and consuls (who had passed several judgments, thereby to force particular persons to take the coin according unto the edict and decree of the council) should be sent for to answer for the same before the company; and thirdly, that the decrees given and already past upon this subject should notwithstanding be executed, so that, at present, there be none but the rentiers of the town–house that will accept of the louis and lis of gold at such rates as the king has given them. A great council was held hereupon at the Louvre yesterday by several mareschals of France and the financiers, but nothing was therein concluded. And the king returned this morning to Bois de Viencennes instead of preparing himself for Fontainebleau.
Mr. de Bordeaux, father–in–law to the embassador Bordeaux, having a great hand in the finances, and finding himself engaged for above one million of livres, is vanish'd away since the departure of the embassador for England, so that the common rumour is, that he has played a bankrupt.
Heads of a proclamation in Spain.
2. That all vessels of the built of said nations shall not enter into any ports of Spain, nor any manufactures, or provisions, or any thing that is made, caught or growth of said kingdoms under confiscation, ⅓ to the denouncer, 2/3 to the king.
5. That the introducer of said goods shall be proceeded against as a traytor, and the person, in whose custody they shall be found (besides the consiscation) shall, in default of producing the introducer, be punished with death and loss of estate.
9. That any goods suspected to be of English growth, although come from other countries, with testimony, shall be adjudged by the admiralty and four other persons, whether they be the English growth or not; if these cannot agree, then a fifth person and his judgment must stand, for that is our royal pleasure.
Col. Cooper to secretary Thurloe.
Though affaires heer administer nothinge new to acquaint you of, yet I adventure to bee thus far troublsome to you, in retourning you hearty thancks for your highnes shewed to my brother Saltonstall, since his comeinge into England. At my takeinge leave of his highness, it was his desire you woold put him in mynde of him. Did you know him soe well as his highness doth, I shoold say nothinge of him, and what I doe say, did I not know to whoe I speake, it might bee judged I speake because of relation; but I can say it's not any inducement to mee; and wear hee not related to mee, I shoold say as much as I doe of him. And I cannot but say, hee is one of the exactest Christians I know at this day. For his faithfullnes to man, let the experience made of him speake, which is the best witness. Sir, if a cup a could water given in the name of a disciple shoold not loose its reward, the kyndnes shewed to him by yourselfe the Lord will owne at your hand; for I veary beleeve you have done it upon that accompt; and my brother, because a strainger to you, I perceave is much affected with it, for which it becomes mee to acknowledg at your hand with all thanckfullnes. The Lord direct you (and them with you ingaged) in those waighty affaires, that are before you, that every thinge done may tend to further your accompt in the great day of the Lord, in whome I am, Sir,
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburgh, to the protector.
May it please your highnes,
By this worthy gentleman, mr. Rolt, I humbly crave leave, as with all due thankfullnes to acknowledge your highnes great grace in honouring me with your commands, soe allsoe most submisly to beseech your highnes to take into your gracious consideration that longe dependinge busines (if I may soe call it) betwixt some factious malignants in the English company, and my selfe with the well affected merchants heere; that if your highnes find me not deserveinge the scandalous charge they have given in against me, and the affronts they have put upon mee, I may then be suitably repaired for the due vindication of your highnes honour in mee your servant, which (if I may take the boldness to speake it) suffereth very much amoungst strangers, besides the great discouragement it layes upon your servant and the honnest party heere to languish thus under the insolences of our enimies, who are really such (whatever they may otherwise pretend) for noe other cause than the doeinge of my duty in the removeinge of a pernicious and traiterous persone from amongst them, as by the papers lyinge before your highnes doth appeare.
If I have merited your highnes displeasure (which I cannot but suspect, beinge my adversaries insult soe longe) though I am not conscious of the least unfaithfullnes towards your highnes and the commonwealth, nor ill deservinge from the English company, I shall humbly throwe myselfe at your feete for pardon; but if I have beene traduced by them, as I dare with boldness affirme that I have, I then most humbly your highnes woonted justice for the repaireinge of my reputation, that soe whilst yow shall thincke meete to command my service heere, I may continue in a capacity to manyfest my selfe accourdinge to my desire and the duty of my place and trust,
Divers of those malignant remonstrators (notwithstandinge their solem appealinge to God for the truth of their good affections to your highnes and the commonwealth, and that they were not influenced by your highnes enemies) are since gone hence with M. G. Massie to serve Charles Steward, whilst their abettors both heere and at London walke with slanderers to obstruct my vindication.
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburgh, to secretary Thurloe.
I Thought it sutable by this worthy gentleman to make one more addresse to his highnes, for some end to be put to that long dependinge busines of the company, a copie of which I heere inclose, requestinge, that if you approve of it, you will please to second it, otherwise to suppresse it, haveinge desired mr. Rolt to deliver or hold it up as you shall judge meete.
I must further intreate yow on the behaulfe of mr. Acton of Danzick, whoe himselfe acquainted mr. Rolt of the money due to him from mr. Benson: the truth is, I stand engaged for the money, which engagement I past to mr. Acton upon mr. Scot's recommendation of mr. Benson to mee; besides, I lent him 100 rix dollars to carry him for England, after he had lived 3 or 4 months in my house. Hee pretends the state owes him above 100 l. which would pay what hee owes to mr. Acton and my selfe; but if that should not bee soe, yet I presume the councel (to whome I hope you will please to represent the busines) will judge it but meete, that such a debte, aryseinge only for meate, drinke and lodginge, and soe undertaken for by me as predict, should be allowed of and satisfied.
I heere inclose an account of the money paid and recharged for the use of mr. Rolt, to which I have nothinge to ad but my wishes for his safe arrivall: hee hath beene very much complemented heere by mr. Townley and his party, because of his neere relation to his highnes, in which, if they attayne not their ends, hee may expect to find them to reflect as unhandsomly, as Townly did upon my Lord Whitlock, of which mr. Swyst can give you an accompt, whoe was present at a publique invitation, where the words were spoke by him. With tender of my due respects, I remaine
Mr. Bradshaw to the lords of the committee of council.
Haveinge understood, that his highnes hath beene pleased to referre unto your honours the consideration of a remonstrance from some disaffected freemen and apprentises in the English company, against my selfe and the well affected merchants here resideinge, togeather with our respective answers thereunto, and severall papers of myne settinge fourth the true cause of theirsoe malicious proceedinge, whatever they may otherwise pretend, with narratives of the particuler misdemeanours and pernicious practises of some of the leadinge men of that faction: I thought it my duty humbly to beseech your lordships to expedite the report of that busines, wherein the honour of his highnes as well as the reputation of his minister abroad is soe much concerned. And the rather for that divers of those malignant remonstrators, notwithstandinge their solemne appealeinge to God for the reality of their affections to his highnes, and the present government, and that they were not influenced by the enemies of the state (the usuall way of such mens cloakinge their dangerous practises) are since gone hence with Massie to serve Charles Steward.
My lords, beinge not conscious in the least of any unfaithfullnes towards his highnes and the common wealth, nor yet of any ill deserveinge from your lordships or the company of merchants adventurers, I doe with boldness beg your woonted justice for the vindicatinge of my reputation from the bespaterings of disaffected and malicious men, that soe whilst it shall please his highnes to command my service heere, I may continue in a capacity to manyfest my selfe accordinge to my desire, and the duty of my place and trust,
The examination of Thomas Moody of Grimston in the parish of Gilling in the county of York, taken before William Boteler, esq; major general of the counties of Northampton, Bedford, Huntington, &c. the29th day of March, 1656.
Who saith, that above fourteen years since he took up arms for the late king at York, and continued in his service about 6 years, and after the articles in Cornwall he desisted the said service, and sojourned with one mr. Barker of Hurst in the county of Berks, about the space of four years, and then travelled into Venice, where he served as a soldier in the regiment of sir Richard Greenvile about 2 or 3 years, and from thence he came into France (where he staied for half a year last) to seek some imployment. Being asked what acquaintance he met withall there, saith, he saw sir Thomas Windebancke, and spoke with the earl of Newcastle, being recommended to his service; and that the said sir Thomas Windebancke telling him of his father's death in Yorkshire, he thereupon resolved to come to England, and upon monday last was sevennight he came over in a litter from Calais to Chatham, and from thence he went to Gravesend, where he staid one night, from thence to Horne on the Hill, and so to Chelmsford, and from thence to Dunmow, and from thence to Walden, and so to Cambridge, and from thence to Cunington in the county of Cambridge upon thursday last, where (his money being spent) he was forced to ask for victuals; whereupon the constable of the said place examining him, and having suspicion of him, had him before mr. Dudley Pope, a justice of the peace in the said county, who also suspecting him to be a dangerous person, caused him to be sent hither. And further saith, that he never saw nor spoke with Charles Stuart or his brother all the time that he was in France. And further saith not.
Information of Robert Rogers.
Robert Rogers, dwelling at the Golden ball in the Strand, a little beyond the New Exchange, saith, that he being at the George in Martin's–lane upon the 27th of March, met there accidentally at seven of the clock at night one Hugh Fisher, heretofore servant of the chamber to Duke Hamilton, afterwards trumpeter to Charles Steward at Worcester, and at present trumpeter in major Babington's troop.
This Fisher took him aside, and ask'd him, if he would accept of an horse and pistols: If so, he would help him to them. Rogers after some demur told him, that if he might have commission for a cornet, or something of that nature, he would not stick to adventure.
Information of R. Rogers.
Upon monday night the 29th of this month the said Rogers mett againe with the said Hugh Fisher, who said, that he could not informe him any thinge further, than having miss'd the gentleman at his lodging, to whom he should have brought Rogers to have conditioned with him.
He appointed Rogers yesterday to meet him at the George in St. Martin's lane betwixt two and three in the afternoon on the 30th, but mett not. They at his lodging (one Craigs in New street in Covent Garden) said this morning, the 31st, that he had laid last night in London.
Copy of two letters the king of Spain wrote the vice–king of Valencia.
Illustrious duke of Montalto, cousin, my vice–king, lieutenant and captain general of the kingdom of Valencia, the colonel don John Patricios hath proffered me, by means of the baron of Vatenilla, to serve me in pay with twenty Irish frigats of war, and in the interim till I accept of them in this service, to grant them liberty to enter freely in all my ports for to careen and reinforce themselves, take provisions, sell, and dispose of their prizes, without any disturbance, molestation, or vexation, as also to give licence; whereas that several Irish merchans, which are catholicks, desire to come out of the republick of England with their estates, and come to live in Spain, may bring their houses and families, and in case peace or treguas should be adjusted with England, the said frigats and Irish people interested in them may remain and live in my kingdom; or at least to give them 6 months time after the publication of peace or treguas for to dispose of their estates, and go where they deem most convenient, and having taken it into consideration have resolved, having no necessity at present of the frigats to serve me, to grant they arm in war against English ships of the dominions of the protector Cromwell, and against those which belong unto French and Portugal, careening in my ports, take provisions, and sell their prizes in the manner they have desired, and the same grant to the ships belonging to prince Rupert and other English men of war, which are not of Cromwell's party, with proviso, that this be made appear by lawful patents and pass–ports, given by the king of Great Britain, and said prince Rupert.
And for what toucheth the coming of Irish families with their estates to live in Spain, that they have free entrance therein, and being Catholicks coming disposed to live in our holy faith, that they reside where may be most for their conveniency, and so live free from the oppression, which they suffer in the English dominions. It is my will, that the Catholicks of that nation find in my kingdoms help and succour. And if in case there should be peace or treguas, ergo a cessation with England, and thereby the Irish of the frigats therein in my ports, or English vessels, which are obedient to the king of Great Britain, and those which have wars against the dominions of Cromwell (ought not to remain) they shall be granted the time which they shall demand for to dispose of their estates, and to go where they think most convenient. I thought to advise you of all, because in what part or occasion shall touch you for the accomplishment of my resolution, that you will put it in execution as I command you. Dated in Madrid the 10th of April, 1656.
Illustrious duke of Montalto, cousin, my vice king, lieutenant and captain general of the kingdom of Valencia, some of my governors and ministers having made doubt whether or no the men of war armada of the Ocean sea and galleys of Spain are to surprize English ships, and use them with hostility; I have in general resolved, that to those English ships, which follow the party of Cromwell, they use all the hostility they can, in whatsoever part they meet, using them as the rest of the enemies of my crown; so thou art to understand and execute it in the occasions that may offer. Touching the Irish frigats and English ships opposers to Cromwell, in another dispatch of this date, I will order what you are to observe. Madrid, April 10, 1656.
Major general Whalley to the protector.
May it please your highnes,
I humbly take the boldnes to renew my former and humble petition in the behalfe of my brother Middleton, to wave the desire of your highnes justice, which I knowe you cannot but extend to all. I humbly beg your pardon, if I a litle plead his merrits, which I hope will procure your favour. Before and at the begining of these warrs hee was the late king's servant, and had severall benificiall places under him; hee left all to serve the parliament, which hee did as capt. of a troope of horse for many yeares; hee hath lost two sonnes in your highnes service in Ireland, deprived of the comfort of the third (if hee bee living) in being at Jamaica; hee proclaimed the late king traitor, and I knowe, however hee speed, hee is and will remayne faithfull to your highnes. My wife is resolved to bee a daylie orator to your highnes, on her brother's behalfe, and unwilling to leave London till a period be put to his buysines; with whome I am an humble suitor to your highnes, that you will give order for it.
Concerneing the inclosure in Leicestersheire, which the grand jury at this assizes presented as a great grievance, I hope I have composed thinges soe as to give satisfaction to all parties, with provision for the publique good.
After the assizes at Warwicke be over, which is the last of judge Hale's circuite, I shall acquaint your highnes by mr. secretary what wee have done, and what is desired in refferrence to publique good; and indeed, my lord, I cannot but informe you, that judge Hale hath soe demeaned himselfe in the counties under my charge, both in reference to your highnes interrest, as alsoe for his justice to all, and in a speciall manner takeing care of poore men in their causes, without which some had suffered; as that I desire, when hee shall waite upon your highnes, you would be pleased to take notice of it, and if it seeme good to you to give him more then ordinary thankes. I humbly take leave, and remayne
Copy of a letter from the city of Dantzick to the protector.
Ad cæteras calamitates, quibus, ita disponente supremo rerum arbitro Deo, hoc tempore affligimur, novus nec ille exiguus dolor nuper accessit, quando ex serenitatis vestræ literis die primo Februarii scriptis intelliximus, Anglos mercatores, qui domicilium in hac urbe habent, conquestos fuisse excubiarum & pensitationum se novis nec legitimis oneribus a nobis gravari. Cum enim & alias semper, & imprimis hoc necessario tempore, ad salutem istius communitatis pertineat, eorum, apud quos summa rerum imperia Deus esse voluit, gratiam ac benevolentiam colligere, collectamque religiosè sancteque conservare, atque inter tales serenitatem vestram omni observantia cultu veneremur, vix quicquam nobis accidere potest acerbius, magisque contra votum atque expectationem, quam si animus benignissimus serenitatis vestræ, quem propensum propitium que hactenus experti sumus, si non exulceratur, saltem velut objectâ sinistræ opinionis aliquà nubeculâ immutatur adversus nos, & quodammodo obscurior redditur. Verum ad illum eundem animum si tam placidè perveniat, quod omninò confidimus, intentionis nostræ sinceritas atque æquitas, quàm ea a nobis candide & innoxie declarabitur, spes maxima superest, nihil istiusmodi nobis inposterum esse metuendum. Et principio quidem arbitramur constare nulla nostra culpa id bellum, quod nunc geritur, esse conslatum, & quæ illius causæ publice præferuntur (quas Deo orbique Christiano, & incorruptæ posteritati dijudicandum relinquimus) ad hanc saltem civitatem nulla ratione pertinere. Deinde cum id agamus unicè, ut side erga supremum à Deo constitutum nobis magistratum intemerata, statum ac libertatem communitatis istius, uti a majoribus ea accepimus integra, si Deo ita visum suerit, servemus ac tueamur, non vindicantes aliena, sed nostra asserentes, quæ ob tam justam causam arma expediuntur legitima esse, nec vituperari posse considimus: quamvis necessitatem istam multis incommodis malisque permixtam, omnibusque modis acerbissimam rebus nostris accidisse pro siteamur. Sed cum ista sit inevitabilis fati necessitas, benignius est arbitrari ea, quæ pro publica defensione a civibus & incolis hujus urbis ex lege nunc sieri & conferri necesse est, eò potius pertinere, ut omnes simus salvi & incolumes, quam quò aut nos ipsos aut quenquam bello alieno implicemus. Nihil autem tam naturale est, & justitiæ atque æquitati tum verò omnium gentium moribus atque institutis magis consentaneum, quam ut ii, quos hujusmodi casus in aliquo loco deprehendit, imprimis si domicilium ibi contraxerint, familias ordinaverint, & cum cæteris civibus certâ ratione usuque commerciorum ac mutuâ consuetudine coaluerint, idemque lucra quamplurima fructusque uberrimos rebus quondam pacatis perceperint, non se subducant rebus afflictis, neque aspernentur legem pro publico usu sancitam (cum alioquin propter incolatum ordinariam loci jurisdictionem agnoscant) sed potius justum aliquod redhostimentum benignæ altrici in aliquam calamitatem non sponte sua prolapsæ, æquis ac lubentibus animis impertiantur. Quod onus cum hactenus non detrectaverint quotquot ex aliis regnis ex rebuspub. advenæ apud nos commorantur, neque Angli incolæ ulla nobiscum transacta lege aut pacto peculiari immunitates aliquas obtentas demonstrare possint, quin potius ex redituum libris publicis perspicuum sit, Angliæ gentis mercatores ante annos circiter 30, cum æque bello Suecico conslictaremur, commune centesimarum onus subiisse, eam de æquanimitate & clementiâ serenitatis vestræ non spem modo sed omnino siduciam concipimus, nolle eam intercedere rebus tam justis usuque receptis, aut permittere, ut commotis novo exemplo aliis advenis & officium deserentibus tempore parum opportuno civitas ista subsidiis necessariis denudetur.
Id autem provisum lege suit, ne latius subventionis onus jurisdictione nostra pateret. Atque ideo nihil exigitur ex iis bonis & mercibus, quas institorio aut factorio nomine advenæ administrant dominorum alibi degentium proprias; saltem dependitur de eo, quod in dominio est incolarum, idque vix negabitur aut totum aut maximam partem in hac urbe, commoditate loci & portus fuisse quæsitum. Appellamus porro conscientiam Anglorum apud nos degentium, annon prolixè & perpetuo experti sint savorem & benevolentiam nostram, aliquando etiam tutamen ac præsidium tempore ipsorum necessario. Hærebit haud dubio memoriæ serenitatis vestræ, quæ rectè saclorum est tenacissima, quid ante aliquot annos evenerit, æquumque judicabit, ne sint immemores accepti beneficii illi, propter quos molem non levem invidiæ & gravissimarum offensionum in nos ultra suscepimus, & ut ipsis amplius effet, unde aliquando necesiltatibus suis ac nostris subvenirent, clementia regis nostri implorata causaque Anglorum constanter desensa essecimus. Denique cum orbi universo constet, non tantum heroicse fortitudinis, sed incomparabilis quoque æquanimitatis atque humanitatis, tum vero absolutse persectæque prudentiæ laudibus serenitatem vestram excellere, non possumus dubitare, quin non tantum nolit quicquam decerpi ex eo, quod gentium jure desendimus; sed præterea eximiè quoque intelligat conservationem statûs nostri portûsque istius omnibus modis ad curas suas gravissimas & Angliæ reipub radones pertinere, quod latius exequi verecundiæ nostrse non est, & serenitas vestra monitore non eget, in eo ut cognoscat, quantopere intersit Balthicof hujusmodi portus & emporia libertate suâ persrui expertia immodicx dominationis & incommodorum, qus inde in alias gentes, quæ navigant & commercantur, derivan plerumque solent. Postrema obsequia studiaque nostra submisse deserentes, Deum precamur, ut, &c.