A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 5, May 1656 - January 1657. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
June (3 of 7)
A letter of intelligence.
As yet we hear nothing here of the English ships coming before our towns upon the coasts of Flanders; and we cannot imagine, that England will desire, that France should get too great an advantage upon these countries; nor that France is willing, that England should get any footing in Flanders, for fear that presently the English would be marching towards Calais and Boulogne; and therefore we do believe, that the misunderstanding between us and the English will sooner end, than the good correspondency will last, which seems to be between France and the English.
In the mean time we are very unfortunate to suffer, because that the reason of state of Spain cannot permit, that the English should keep Jamaica. The king without that hath but too much country; but however, without the retaking of Jamaica, and the quietness of the Indies, he can in no wise hearken to an accommodation with England.
King Charles or his followers have made men believe, that he hath great intelligence and interest. Formerly we have been often abused by the duke of Orleans, who likewise did but increase our charge: however we do judge and consider, that he is irreconcileable with the protector Cromwell, and that we have nothing to fear on that side, as to his person; but his domesticks are not of the same condition, and I do presume enough, that there are some of them, that are gain'd by the French and by the English. The ambassador Gamarra hath his dispatch for Holland, but he hath leave to make a journey to Ghent for his own affairs. He hath power enough to treat in Holland, if he do find they will bite, and are disposed; and to preach jealousy amongst them upon the consequence, that would follow, in case the French and English do approach any nearer to the two trading provinces, and the nearest adjacent to Flanders and Brabant.
Advice of the states of Friesland.
The states of Friesland having examined with ripe deliberation the important points and reasons in the letter of the lord Knyff, bearing date the 14/14 June, 1656, concerning the means, whereby the commerce and navigation of these countries upon the East sea, and especially upon the river Weyssel and the city of Dantzick, may be vigorously and speedily protected and preserved against all inconveniences; they do not only find and approve in all things of the means proposed by their noble great lordships, the States of Holland, but do also consent to assist with all speed, if need be, the town of Dantzick with money, soldiers, and ships, as many as they shall stand in need of, till such time that the Weyssel as far as Thorn shall be opened, for the service and free use of the commerce of these countries, as hath been formerly used; to which end the fleet shall go to the Sound, not only to be employed upon the road of Dantzick, but also before the heads of other harbours, where the service of the state shall require it. And for the securing of the commerce of this state, the relieving of Dantzick, the protecting of Prussia, and for the effecting of the said designs, a considerable army of foot shall be employed under some experienced officers of the state, upon condition however, that their high and mighty lordships will use all endeavours, that on one side the state of these countries may be assured of some advantages to be granted by those of Dantzick, and the king of Poland; and likewise withall, that they be desired and prevailed with, that the free exercise of the reformed religion may be allowed of throughout all Poland. Thus done the 21st of June, 1656. [N. S.]
Henry Van Rhenswonde, the Dutch envoy at Madrid, to the States General.
My lords, since my last of the 14th current, I have received your high and mighty lordships letter of the 13th May last with due respect, wherewith your high and mighty lordships are pleased to send me the petition of Grotenhuyse living at Amsterdam, as also that of Frank Cornelis Van Deinck and company dwelling at Maesluys, all owners and freighters of the ship the young Tobias, as also the extract of your high and mighty lordships resolutions taken upon them; the contents whereof is, that I should use all good endeavours and offices, to the end the petitioners may receive reparation for the great damage they have suffered by the taking and bringing in of the said ship to Cadiz. I have hitherto advised the schipper and factor, who solicit this business here at court in the name of the petitioners, how to manage the business. I make no doubt, now I am seconded with your high and mighty lordships authority, but that they will soon find the effects thereof. I am heartily sorry, that I have been forced to put off my audience through indisposition, and have been forced to excuse myself to don Lewis de Haro.
The admiral Blake is now again before Cadiz, where he hath detained three ships of Amsterdam; and after a strict search he hath let go two, and kept one, which he faith to have counterband goods in her.
Lockhart, embassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
I ame verie unwilling to give needlesse alarums. What I said in that I tooke the boldnesse to offer to his highnesse by Mr. Swist, I was so pressed to it, that I durst not be sylent in it without bringing myself under the guilt of breach of trust. Their may be a malitious desyn in the informer. If their be anie truth in that I have some cause to be aphensive of, which is this.
a cordelier frier hath since my arryvall heare passed twyce be tw ixt cardinall and don Low is D'A ro Whatever is in it, is kept verie secrett. If in earnest, then all offer of port Flanders am use the prot but if the card designe to am us e Spayne then all is well. A protest de put y and a frend of monsieur Turenne hath given me a hint of this. I seemed not to beleeve it, and yett assured them, their further information about it should be gratefullie acknowledged.
I told yow in my last the pryces of the particulars formerlie mentioned is still expected: the qwantitie cannot be condescended to, till that be knowen, for as they are dear or cheap, resolutions will be taken to bring them from thence or elswhere.
I shall endeavor with all possible cawtiosnesse to penetrate into the particular above mentioned; and must beg leave to assure you, that (after his highnesse service) I shall desyr nothing with greater passione, then the honor of being continued in your esteem, as,
Your most humble and faithfull servant,
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
They are also summoned upon the complaint, which some masters of ships sailing to Norway made lately, how that the commissioners of the king in Norway did exact of the Holland ships against the treaty of the year 1647; of which complaint this resolution of the 31st May doth give all the particulars.
The ministers of Brandenburg have this morning again required free passage, and leave to imbark their troops raised in the country of Cleve; but the same is referred to the council of state to consider of; hoc est, to delay it.
The commissioners, who have been at Rhynberck, have not yet made report. Holland doth manage the business so, to the end it may be delay'd a little, till there hath been another conference with the commissioners of the elector of Cologne.
This morning the assembly was ended by eleven of the clock, having only read some letters, it being considerable, that the correspondent at Koningsberg (being a kinsman of the Griffier Ruysch) doth write, how that one called Berlicom (having been a quarter-master and engineer here) a quarter-master-general of the elector of Brandenburg, had given several blows with a staff to the said correspondent, so that he keeps his chamber; and the cause of the quarrel he writes to be, by reason that he spoke ill of the king of Sweden and the elector; whereof the last at least he denieth, confessing to have spoken ill of the king. The particulars he writ in a foregoing letter, which came not to hand, and must be intercepted.
The assembly here hath taken it ill, by reason, that the said correspondent hath a private commission from this state; and they threaten to deprive the said Berlicom of his office of engineer, which he hath here upon the state of war. Other vindicta justa per unjustum vindicem: for here they did no justice of a publick robbery and affront done to a publick minister.
The lord of Beverweert by order of the lords of Holland doth carefully and particularly inform himself of the fortifications, situation of Dantzick, Munde, Hoost, of the river, its largeness, deepness, &c. So that something effective is expected from this assembly, as soon as the members are returned, which will be this night.
The secretary of the embassy of Spain having demanded in his memorandum a release of some priests, who are prisoners at Sas, against the children of a merchant of Amsterdam; that being done, there will be no more difficulty.
The states of Holland have not yet brought any thing into the assembly. It is believed, they will do it to-morrow. I am assured, that the most part of Holland are very resolute; but of Rotterdam much doubt is made, as usually Rotterdam doth still shew itself contrary to the maxims of Amsterdam. Likewise there are some amongst those of Holland, who would by might and main engage the duke of Brandenburg against Sweden. Also it is said, that the resolution of Holland will be with many limitations and restrictions.
In the end the reduction of interests of the generality from five to four being agreed and resolved on (according to the enclosed copy) it hath been represented, that possibly it may happen, that the particular receivers of towns of the generality cannot so easily find the capital, in case, &c. Upon that is resolved, that in such a case the receiver general is to take it upon himself.
The commissioners of Dantsick hath represented by the lord president, that the ambassador of Muscovy passing upon the road, had signified by word of mouth, that he had order to declare to Dantzick, that, his master had made peace with the king of Poland, and that they had made him to believe at Koningsberg, that Dantzick was closely besieged, that he could not get into it; and in the end he recommended his expedition.
Holland hath not yet done any thing, but they promise to do it to-morrow, and it is feared, that there will be limitation in their resolution. It is wished, that the ministers of Brandenburg would stir up this state or speak to those of Holland, to animate them against Sweden, but the ministers show, that they have no such order, and they perceive that the duke of Brandenburg doth stick close to the Swedes.
The lord Nieuport in his particular letter doth discourse about the maritime treaty; that the English in no wise will let fall the two points in question during this war they have with Spain. However that he was to have another conference with the commissioners of the lord protector about the said treaty.
The lord Witsen burgomaster and the secretary de Wilt are come hither from the admiralty of Amsterdam, to give reasons why and how they did give lately convoy to the English ships, who with convoy and all were taken by the Dunkirkers.
Men expect to day the overture of Holland upon the great business of the Baltick sea; and if the commerce doth fear any disturbance in the said Eastern parts, it is likewise to be feared in the West. Upon the reiterative complaint, that in France they begin to dispute the right of Aubene, and that in the ports of Spain they will visit the Holland ships against the maritime treaty, there are come some commissioners, not only from the admiralty of Amsterdam, but from others likewise, to advise against the depredations in the Mediterranean sea, in the channel and narrow; to prevent which some propose not to make any more convoys, but to cause all the ships to ply to and again; chiefly since there will be a want of men of war, so great a number being designed for the Baltick sea, although as yet there are but twenty five in the Sound, and the great ship of Opdam being come back into the Vlie.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
The ambassador of the St. Gen. with Cromwell continues still his complaint, that those of Cromwell will not yield to him concerning those two articles, which are in question; yea that those of Cromwell do wholly excuse themselves upon the present constitution of the enmity which they have with Spain. That two or three English (amongst others the lord you) had been to see him, to tell him so much, being ready to sign all the other articles of the treaty. Here doth run at present a very great discourse amongst the States Gen. and the states of Hol. how that Cromwell is in a bad condition, traversed by his army, unprovided of monies: and they are chiefly the well affected of Holland that talk so, and who do tickle themselves with such discourse, for those well affected of Holland have a strong opinion, that there is a great amity (if not alliance) between Cromwell and Sweden; consequently that Cromwell will assist the Swede if Cromwell is not traversed by Spain, by his army, for want of money, and by the like difficulties. Here hath been likewise the same firm belief and impression, that ambassadors, and especially the lord you was to come hither; and it doth seem, that raedt pensionary and Beverning had some particular advice of it from the ambassador; and that they likewise impute to the necessity of Cromwell. The stat of Hol. have advice, that the lord secretary of Cromwell had seen the resident of Denmark, telling him and persuading him, that the Dane ought to hold himself neutral without joining with the States General. Yea that the Dane as well as Cromwell ought to interpose between the States Generall and the Swede, &c. to which the said resident made answer, that that which he hath told him was considerable, but that he desired to know, whether he told him that, as his own proper advice and motion; or if he told it him on the behalf of Cromwell. To which he made answer, that he would reply, and make answer that another time.
A very great and chief friend of the princess of Orange told me laughing and admiring, that he found those, who formerly did all that they could to please Cromwell, now do show themselves the most averse to Cromwell. As in truth, the elector of Brandenburg and theirs, yea princess dowager, himself are pretty moderate against Cromwell; and it is by reason, that the elector of Brandenburg is very much interested to keep himself joined with the Swede and the states of Holland on the contrary are interessed not to suffer that to separate them from being together. I have made a trial of corresponding at Brussells, in the mean time that I can go thither once. Although that I do not judge it greatly practicable, yet I will do his endeavour.
Yesterday and to day very late as well the States General as the states of Holland were continually together, and
only upon the business of the East sea it being very certain, that as well in the states of Holland as in the States General there is
a great deal of difference; and whatsoever business they shall resolve on, there will be still
some difference and division between the council, and the forces, and arms, and several
limitations, whereof as yet nothing determinately is to be advised. I am
Your most humble servant.
For the right honourable the lord Whitelocke at Chelsey.
For all your lordship's favoures and civilytyes I have but my duty and thankes to returne you, which I hope I shall never be wanting in. I found your daughter at my arrivall (blessed be God) in good health, though, as I now understand, shee had beene very ill while I was away, and never writt to mee a syllable of it, while I continued in London. I presume, my lord, to give you some passages, that occurred here last Saturday and Lord's-day. There mett here within two miles of my house at least four hundred persons out of seven or eight severall countyes of Wales, commanded in chiefe (I may say) by Mr. Vavasor Powell. Understandinge of this unusuall concourse, I sent my deputy sheriffe (conceiving it my duty) to know uppon what score they convened. They returned mee this answer by him, that they mett to breake breade, and intended a meetinge of part of severall congregation churches of Wales at our parish church this last Lord's-day. What their intentions were or may bee, I cannot conjecture; but sure I am, they were countenanced by magistrates, dissenters of the present governement. When I was informed of what they intended, I went in noe way to disturbe them in the duty of the day; but I doe humbly desire your lordship to move his highnesse (if you see fitt) in what hath passed, and to know his pleasure, whether such tumultuous assemblyes bee allowed or not; for here they doe intend another farre greater meetinge within a month. I professe, my lord, what I did was in relation to the oath I had taken, and preservation of the publick peace, and not any way to disturbe them. If their meetinges be allowed of, I beseech your lordship to give mee your sence, how I must in the future behave myselfe uppon the like occasion; for sure I am wee shall have many, and such, I feare, as in conclusion (if not prevented) may prove dangerous. This I made bold to acquaint your lordship with, and to beg your sence, when you think convenient. I hope, my lord, you have ere this proceeded farre in the way of an end in my businesse; and that the treaty set on foot as to sister Mary goes hopefully on. Your daughter and myselfe joyne in request for our brother Will's sudden visittinge our poore habitation, accordinge to your lordshipp's promise, which wee hope will bee ere long. Wee both joyne in our duty to your lordship and my lady, and respects to our brother and sisters.
Mr. Ph. Meadowe, the English envoy at Lisbon, to the generals Blake and Mountagu.
The Colchester friggott sett sayle this morning with fourty four chests aboard, containing 60131 m. 450 reis, which makes about twenty nine thousand pounds sterling. The bills of Alfandega are now paid off, together with the bonds of merchants, which I formerly mentioned, all but 24000 crownes, which wil be counted this afternoone; and so the whole remainder of the debt will, I hope, be upon the Saphire to-morrow morning. There is still one thing in difference: my lord chamberlaine, their ambassadour when in England, gave bills upon their treasury heer in Lisbone for the payment of 20,000 l. sterling at the allowance of 32 per cent. which exchange was then accepted, and the moneys assigned to be paid to Mr. Bird. But then the bills bear date the 28th of December 1652, and the moneys were to be paid the first of March next immediately following. They therefore not haveing performed in point of tyme according to the agreement, I demand a new exchange higher then 32, according as it goes at this present. They insist upon the former exchange according to the agreement in England, albeit they have forfeited the benefitt of it by laps of time; and alsoe make the agreement for the exchange of the 20,000 l. be a rule and proportion for the 30,000 l. sterling, according to the article. This they are angry at, and tell me, I deale with them discourteously, which I shall finde, when I have occasion to request any thing of favour at their hands. But I am resolved not to foregoe my demand, and as chuseing rather to displease them then my superiors. I have onely these two wayes to helpe myselfe; the one by recourse and remonstrance to your honours; the other by denying to give his majestie an acquittance, till I shall receive the whole. The newes of your takeing the Flushing, as also the sending in of the frigotts to clean, have now made us good freinds againe. And as to point of courtesie and civilitie, I clamour now at them, that whereas a friggott of ours comeing in saluted them with nine guns, they returned but one. I am now prepareing my dispatch for England. It wil be requisite, that the captains of the friggots, that carry the moneys for England, give me and Mr. Bird their receipts. I have no more at present, but that I am
Your honours to be commanded,
Mr. W. Mettam to secretary Thurloe.
The seldom and uncertain passages either stop or make staile all our news hence, especially in these times of jealous embargoes. Notwithstanding animated by your last to evidence the more my fidelity and zeale for your interest, and besides invited by the integrity of your agent's confidence with me, I secretly and without shewe, what I could not immediately remitt to you, imparted to him, the better to give light in order to this peace; the which if most advantageous to your interest, Mr. Medowe hath compleated, overcoming many difficulties with this shallow and distracted court, to his commendation here, and, as I hope, your satisfaction there. Among this people, who love and feare more then they obey reason and equitie, assure yourselfe the vicinitie of your threatening fleet made them allow your peace, alter their lingring counsells, and pay the money, which otherwise had not beene so soone out of these tenaceous hands, unles they had first secured their Brasill adventures, and the two yeares expectation now coming in two East Indian ships. I have discoursed many of their wisest politians, and find this state's axiome to be verefied here, that whatever nation desire to have and use this a friend, must not depend of it, but be its debter, never complie totally with it, unless such compliance do equally profitt both. If you have any other request, 'tis now time to demaund it, before they reap the Brasill treasure; afterwards if they dare, they will be more difficult, and onely apparently true to your interest, because they dread, but love you not. Nay some great ones have spoake it in confidence to some, of whom I heard it, as the Conde de Cantaneiro, marques of Nizza, your old friend, the extraordinarie embassadour, that the devill helped the English to take them thus upon advantage, which they hoped would not always last; and that if it were not for a particular fansie to peace in their king, and for their rich sugars, they would have lulled and fooled the English, as they did the French and Duch, and at worst deferred this agreement; which ill affected discourse is seconded by their capricious sea-generall, by name the conde de Villa Pauca, now going forth with seven ships to usher in their expected fleet, esteemed to be at present about the islands. He braggs with one to fight ten English, and promiseth, if his king will permit and concurre, in few years with litle cost to make Portugallia the paragon and mistress of those seas. Their ships are good, their soldiers ill payed, their seamen few, and unskillfull. This king hath made a shew of great reallitie in this treatie, especially seeing his Spanish and Roman hopes not so successfull as yet. He seemes an honest man 'midst a disagreeing, proude, if not false, and not too much knowing counsell. The objections to obstruct this peace, you had them in part in my last, made at this counsel table by all except the conde de Mirrha, and Petro Fernandez Montero, secretarie of state. And yet these and the rest are got into great jealousies and doubts, that after this peace seigned, and moneys paid, your fleet intends hostilitie, if it can upon any pretence, for all that your augent and generalls assures the contrarie, if they performe but the articles with all expedition. The like frights possessed them in all this treatie, caused, as I told you, by an Irish dominican in France, some of the English clergiemen here, and by severall informations from som in their augent's house with you, who hate and invent all ill they can to disparage, if not disadvantage your present government. They are much persuaded into this mistrust by the memory of generall Blake's word once, they pretend, broake with them, and by a scruple they feele in conscience, least you heareing of the affront done you in your agent treacherously wounded, should demand hereafter new satisfaction, which hath been the cause of these demurres, before you hear the success of your affaires here since your last orders to your agent, at which time you had heard nothing of this injurie. It was a base action, nor (though the conde to G. Lambert say, that his king's resentment counterpoises the harme don) can it be excused by falsely laying it on the Spaniard; for though I cannot assert its authors, yet for divers odd discourses I suspect it a revenge for the late Pantaleon beheaded on Tower-hill: First because the conde in his apologie to G. Lambert suggests a suspition in excuse: Secondly because he and his brother-inlaw, the conde de Torre, a man noted for bloodshed and murthers, have been marked more then usually together, both glad for the accident, and onely sorrie, as they said in private, then Mr. Meddow receaved a slighter wound then their brother in London. More of this hereafter, if I can learne it, and you require it. The above conde is much afflicted, though he dare not shew it, at the peace; first, because it is concluded; and secondly, because it was not acted by himselfe, saieng in confidence to some, Woe be to conde de Mirrha, Fernandez Montero, and the king's confessor, the three chiefe and sole advancers of this peace, if the perfidious English observe not all quiet love and friendship. More of this you have from your agent. Their agent with you boasts much of the power and efficacie he hath with your counsellers, and of the esteeme he gets among all English, especially Roman Catholickques; for which reason the king hath encreased his stipend two hundred pounds per annum more then it was. Of two hundred and fifty thousand crownes one hundred and thirty thousand is embarked in the Colchester frigat; the rest, I believe, will be imbarked, although the most jealous and disaffected, if not Spanish partie, in this councell would have no more money to be payed, till the Brasill fleet come in, unles eight of your frigats were left in paune. This obstacle will be taken away by the dreadfull presence of your fleet, if I be not mistaken; although indeed some English clergiemen here, as one by name Mr. Russell, and the old consul Robinson, to render you odious, make use of all ridiculous fictions and stories of the sectaries in England, some of which they pretend to meet in Lisbonstreets as straggling men belonging to the fleet, alledgeing them to be scandalous, though onely drunke; but as yet this inquisition will not injure you or yours, although heareafter by such malitious medlesomnes of such like disaffected persons inconveniencies may happen in that behalfe. Nevertheles the Portughes find many English marchants, either disaffected or deseigning each one to keep some conde or other his freind, to further his interest; who tell all and more then they know by way of intelligence, insomuch that when your agent with all the English merchants went to visit your generalls, as they came to this barr, the next day all the passages were told at the Portughese counsel table by the intelligence of one Mr. Becque, Mr. Pigleston, and Mr Warren, merchants: 1. That a kinsman of general Montague should have said, that your fleet had let pass into Cales two Hollanders and two Hamburghers, the two latter loaden with Englishmens goods by night. 2. How the English were much frustrated and deceaved in their war with Spain, making rods for themselves, when they preferred the French peace. 3. That some frigats were sent scouting as far as the islands, which encreaseth the Portughese jealousies, &c. 4. That the lord Montague did not approve this peace, because it was not agreed within the time prescribed by his highnes. That thereupon general Blake should replie, that it was good payment, when a bill charged at five should be payed in ten dayes; and therefore approved the peace. 6. That the fleet did but slenderly receave and entertaine the said marchants, especially with good cheare and gunns, &c. These are but poore things, yet among these jealous and credulous statesmen begot severall thoughts, and shew that you must be cautious, how you commit any thing to the knowledge of marchants, some of whom be ill affected, others slaves to wine, and most servants to interests, &c. And nevertheless this place (as fit to carry on a deseigne in) so it wil be prone to concurre privately, and hatch any harme these people can against you; although they confess and bewaile the entertainement of prince Rupert, which hath cost this state first and last 800,000 l. sterling. My resolution for Italie I cannot as yet put in execution, being no ship, since I came, hath gone hence that way. Yet ere long, I hope for an opportunity though to pass by Alicant in Spain, where peradventure I may learne something. I hope I may find some character from you with your freind in Ligorne, which sometimes will be necessarie. Being invited to serve my owne countrie by your agent, I offered secretly my promptnes in that behalfe, and withall desired him to second me to yourselfe and his highnes; but told him nothing of the contents of your last to me, which I desire may be ever secret, till you please to employ me publicquely. I rest,
Your most humble, faithfull, and obedient servant,
Mr. Longland, agent at Leghorn, to secretary Thurloe.
This week wi hav som newes of the coming of the French towards Itally, the duk of Mercure with the conte St. Andrea, and a great army of abov twenty thousand men, besyds what the duk of Modena can rais in his countrey, which may bi about seven in eight thousand men. On the other syd the Spanyard is not asleep, and what hi is not able, his neigbour the pope and other princes wil help, besyds the imperial forces, which wil be large now (at lest eiht or ten thousand men) seing, that the Pole has stopt the Swed's torrent, and appeares in the field with thirty thousand men, which indeed has much elevated the spirits of the Austrian party. The sicknes has now extended itself into the pope's state, insomuch that our prince has banisht al commerce therewith, we being yet clear; God so continue it. By reson of this sicknes Millan wil be debarr'd of the succour it had last year from Naples, wher the discontents of the piple threaten a greater deluge then the pest. The lest assistance from abroad wold mak them resolv to shak off the Spanish yok, and set up a prince of theyr own. I writ you in my last, how fit an object the prince of Avelino was for that busnes, being the greatest and most popular prince in that kingdom, and one that would willingly harken to any motion from the Inglish. It is confirmed by way of Genoa, that the articles of peace ar fully agreed on, and subscryb'd by his hynes and the king of Portugal; which does not a little discontent the Spanyards. By the first ship that coms from Lisbon, I expect to hear at lest (if not se) that gentleman Mr. Mettam, when I shal giv you a more large account of that affair; til when I humbly subscryb myself what I really am,
Your most faithful servant,
The Dutch ambassadors in Prussia to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
My lords, it is certain, that the king of Poland is at present with his army near or before Warsaw, strong effectively above 40,000 men, and amongst them some foot, consisting of those of Hungary and Wallachen, provided with artillery and twenty pieces of ordnance; and that they have summoned the city; but that general Wittenberch, who commands there, did return couragiously an answer, that he was resolved to defend the same to the last. Some assaults have been made by the Poles upon it, but they were repulss'd with the loss of many upon the place, some prisoners, and two pieces of ordnance.
The Swedish army under duke Adolph and general Wrangell lieth near the river Buck four miles from Warsaw, and doth increase daily, and two days there marched from this city to join with them two regiments of foot and one thousand horse.
The project of the commissioners of the dukedom of Gueldre, and earldom of Zutphen, made in the assembly of their high and mighty lordships on the 23d of June, 1656. [N. S.]
Generals Blake and Mountagu to Mr. P. Meadowe, the English envoy at Lisbon.
We have received your letter of the 12th instant, wherein there are some things, that doe not concerne us to intermedle in; our businesse here not being only to speed away some friggotts with the money for England, wherein we feare there hath been too much delay; and had we thought it would have been so long, we should have dispatched away an advise for England before this tyme; and our stay heer, besides the deteininge us from other service, hath also been (as you have signifyed unto us) an occasion of encreaseing jealousyes in this country, which we would willingly avoide; and therefore desire all possible diligence may be used in dispatching what remaines of the money on board the Saphire, and she therewith be returned to us by Munday morning next at furthest, according to the orders we have sent the captain, for we cannot approve of any longer delay in this matter. Notwithstanding if any part of the money should be unprovided at that time, there will be other friggotts there, who may take it in afterwards. We are
Your loving freinds,
Mr. P. Meadowe to generals Blake and Mountagu.
I received your honours of the 13th instant. The Saphire sayles this day, and hopes to be with the fleet, if not to night, yett early to-morrow morning, haveing aboard her the remainder of the 50,000 l. Yesterday haveing conference with the commissioners, after a warme debate, I obteyned satisfaction for the exchange I formerly mentioned, but they looke upon it no better then a peece of tyrany. The Saphire hath aboard her 30,000 crownes in gold, which in England will be at least thirty five pounds loss per cent. and therefore must of necessity be changed into silver. If your lordshipps will please to take any of the gold, and put peices of eight instead thereof, it wil be no loss to you in any thing you shall have occasion for in Portugall. However I hope by Munday night to send you silver instead thereof, and to have the gold returned me againe; for to send it into England, as it is, would be intollerable damage. Yesternight the conde de Meira delivered me a paper in Portuguese, the translate whereof is the enclosed. If your honours will please to send me a prescript form of ceremonies to be interchanged betweene the armada's, they will readilly comply therewith. I clamour'd with them by way of retort for their discourtesyes, a frigatt of ours saluting them with nine guns, and they returning but one. The king this morning sent to me to excuse it. The Dutch consul was with me this afternoone, and delivered me the inclosed. I am almost ready with my dispatches for England, with which I send Mr. Maynard. I have some thoughts Munday or Tuesday to come downe privately, and waite upon your honours; and shall alwayes be ready to approve myselfe
Your honours in all service,
Commissioner Pels to the States General.
The news and great alteration, which hath happened in the Swedish and the Brandenburghers court, by reason of a new alliance between them, your high and mighty lordships will understand out of the letters of your lords ambassadors. They have now joined their forces together, and have some grand design in hand.
A letter of intelligence.
The prince of Ligne being parted one or two days before, Don John followed him yesterday on horseback. He was to lie at Grammont, where without doubt he met the prince of Condé, to go together to Tournay with all the troops. They go upon some design, and with great hopes of being able to relieve Valenciennes; and so much the more, as the business doth seem to be seasible, in regard of the extent of the line of circumvallation, whereof you may judge, since it comprehends Beurage, which is three quarters of a mile from the city. But they give a great deal of time to the French to intrench and fortify themselves; and besides it is very certain, that the French army is very numerous, being engrost with most part of the garrisons, which they have drained upon the frontier places.
The besieged have not above thirteen or fourteen thousand soldiers of horse and foot, but they have good store of great guns, and they have raised one hundred and fifty thousand guelders to maintain four thousand men.
This is a business of great importance, and an enterprise, whereof the issue, let it be what it will, will have great consequences. In the mean time it doth seem, that we are not without some hope of peace, if it were credible, that it was for that subject, and in good earnest, that some certain persons, confidents of the cardinal, are gone towards Bayonne; but I believe it is only a fiction.
Likewise you know, that Cromwell hath recalled Montagu to satisfy Blake, who doth only fire some guns against the town of Cadiz, which sent out twenty gallies in a calm to fight the English ships, which made them to retreat.
A list of the ships to be set forth by the admiralties of Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Zealand, and North Holland, for the clearing and freeing of the Mediterranean and narrow seas of pirates and others that disturb and molest the commerce, delivered to their high and mighty lordships on the 24th of June, 1656. [N. S.]
Barriere to one Souchon.
I have already writ you word, that the French army threatened Valenciennes, which they have now besieged; and their line hath been begun ever since the 16th current, and which I believe is far advanced. They have not yet opened their trench. This is a great design of theirs, and of great consequence, and which will not take, if the inhabitants prove true to us; but if they juggle, it will go near to be lost. But we have news, that they are well-affected, and have raised four thousand men in the town. I believe the place will hardly be taken. The generals are gone from hence with a resolution to relieve it at any price whatsoever. If they have good success, it will be a great business; but if the place be lost, it will be a bad business for Spain.
Extractum literarum domini Comenii ad dominum Rulicium, ministrum Amsterodomensem.
S. P. D.
Reverende domine, spero meos amanuenses (Podivinum et Woytium) quos mox ab excisâ (eheu) Lesnâ nostrâ per vos ad dilectum nostrum dominum S. Hartlibium misi, sub conductu manûs Dei, rectè ad vos penetrâsse, et sic de calamitoso statu nostro et meo informatos vos esse. Equidem est, unde cum aliis gratias agam Deo, qui mihi spolii loco vitam dedit, addiditque, ut manuscriptorum partem reciperem: doleo tamen potiorem partem esse amissam; ea scilicet omnia, quæ de Pansophicis ad mundum erant descripta, et prelo parata, eheu! Maculaturas retinui, nec eas omnes. Ut tamen hæc etiam flammis erepta, et quoquo dabitur modo reparata, vestro judicio tandem aliquando luci exponi possent. Excessi unà cùm istis reliquiis in locum, ubi tutior ab insidiis esse possem, Francosurtum ad Oderam, ibique uxore cùm liberis relictâ, huc Stetinum me transtuli, animo ad vos festinandi, ibique communi consilio (quorum interest) domino Elzevirio hæc tradendi, forsan et ad dominum Hartlibium, si consultum videbitur, transfretandi. Habeo enim à Constantino Schaumio (à quo et hero suo rectè tibi esse tradita per illos meos, quæ missa fuere, sperabo) singularia illic renuntianda. Ita, inquam, animus fuit ad vos celeriter volandi; sed amicorum hujus loci sententia est deflectendum esse in Borussiam ad serenissimum Suecorum regem. Nondum consilium est stabilitum (pendet et pendebit certas ob causas hodie et cras) ego tamen judicium mei facere volui, ut me non esse perditum (id est mea illa omnia, sine quibus non viverem) intellecto, gratias agatis Deo, qui suos et sua non derelinquit, oretisque pro me misero, ut porrò non derelinquat. A genero meo Dantisci obsesso nihil habui integro jam mense; utinam illius quoque urbis fata mitescant, sed terrent adhuc multa. Ultimis ille ad me suis docuit dominum Hartlibium optare, ut inter nos literarium reviviscat commercium. Eo igitur lubentiùs non tantùm commercium redintegrare, sed et me ipsum sistere animum induxi. Nunc tamen illi peculiariter non scribo, sed tuæ dilectioni, distractus hic variis et compendii causa. Tu ipse, oro, de his eum certiorem facias, aut etiam hanc ipsam chartam ad eum mittas. Reliqua coram, si vota prosperaverit Altissimus, mutuo utrinque solatio, firmiter spero. Tantum enim adhuc ex atris illis nubibus lucis reliquum nobis fecit Dominus, ut non defuturum sit, undè exultemus in bonitate ejus. Plus non vacat hâc vice. De publico nihil scribo, qui aconstant aliundè. Privata mecum feram, et læta (dabit Deus) adferam. Interim valete, observandi amici, fautores, patroni, quibus omnia læta
Animitùs vovet omnium vestrûm servus in Christo,
The king of Portugal to the protector.
Serenissime protector reip. Angliæ, Scotiæ, Hiberniæ, &c. Nos D. Joannes, Dei gratia rex Portugalliæ, et Algarbiorum citra et ultra mare in Africa, dominus Guineæ, atque adquisitionis, navigationis, et commercii Æthiopiæ, Arabiæ, Persiæ, ac Indiæ, &c. serenissimæ celsitudini vestræ salutem plurimam dicimus pro nostra erga vos æstimatione. Quia in articulis 6to et 14to ejus pacis, quam comes de Penaguia, noster apud serenissimam vestram celsitudinem legatus, sancivit, continebantur clausulæ aliquot in materia de religione, quas idcirco, cum res supra regiam nostram auctoritatem sit, sas non erat a nobis ratificari; neque vero si fieret, exinde pax constans et firma, quam optabamus, ullatenus esse posset, videlicet regno non acquiescente paci ex studio religionis: hæc propter cum Philippo Meadowe, qui pro componendis iis dubiis a celsitudine vestra ad nos ablegatus est, aliter, et qua maxime fieri ratione potuit, de re conventum erat; sic ut prædicti articuli sub commodioribus clausulis jam parati propediem ad celsitudinem vestram mitterentur, datis literis nostris, ut ratificare vestra celsitudo vellet; pactâ interim et præstitâ publicâ fide pro securitate omnium, et cujusvis mari terraque hostilitatis. Nisi quod tempore importunistimo ab adventu Thomæ Maynard, idem Philippus insperatò perfert ad nos, omnino oportere, ut pacis tractatum, quem ipse attulisset, confirmare vellemus; sic enim sibi a cel situdine vestra imperari. At quanquam dubium non sit, tunc cum darentur ea mandata, longe aliter existimasse celsitudinem vestram de rerum statu, qui profecto is habebatur, a quo descendere non esset; tamen Philippo acerrimè enitente, nos utique amatores optimæ pacis, ut celsitudini vestræ serenissimæ hac etiam in parte (quod Philippus negotio quidem commodum, sibi vero necessarium ducebat) complaceamus, tandem tractatui subscripsimus, certe non dubia spe nostra ita futurum, ut haud minus res, prout commodius composita erat, concludatur. Igitur celsitudinem vestram serenissimam, quod jam alias, rursus, ac repetitis votis, sincere atque prout bonum amicum et fœderatum decet, confidentur rogamus, probatas ratasque celsitudo vestra habere velit breves illas et leves de religione clausulas, quæ Anglicanæ reip. in nullis noceant, nobis vero tam necessaries, ut quam utrique genti perpetuam exposcimus, non aliter speremus placidam et stabilem pacem usquam fore. Quin vero ubi celsitudo vestra (de quo nobis dubitare non est) in re annuat, insuper eâdem contentione rogamus speramusque, ut tractatus ille comitis legati nostri jam inutilis, pacique non modo non congruus, sed contrarius, sub quo maximo secreto esse possit ad nos referatur comburendus; sic enim solicitis et prope inquietis subditorum animis in contrarium suspicandi, pacis vero et coronæ nostræ hostibus omnis apud summum pontificem nocendi occasio occludetur. Celsitudinem vestram serenissimam Deus max. opt. incolumem semperque felicem servet. Dabantur Alcantaræ 24 Jun. ann. 1656. [N. S.]
Count O de Mira to the protector.
Hujus epistolæ confidentiam, ut affectui in gentem Anglicam meo imputare velit, celsitudinem vestram rogo, quorum remp. meritissimo protegis; qui quidem affectus in serenissimo rege nostro eximie cernitur. Ideo mihi aliisque administris ejusdem animi ac fidei gravissimum hoc pacis et amicitiæ negotium delegavit, ut cum Philippo Meadowe a celsitudine vestra misso conficeretur. Re ex voto peracta, ut ab exemplis actorum ab eodem transmissis celsitudini vestræ constabit (est enim vir in observatione mandatorum vestrorum pari solertia ac diligentia præditus) cum e domo mea noctu in suam pergeret, omnis infortunii securus, facinus illud contigit, cujus narratione supersedeo, ne dolorem meum exulcerem, cui sane ingemuit nobilitas pariter ac plebs; sed super omnes perdolitum est regi nostro, cujus imperio de nefario conatu acerrima quæstio instituta est, provocato quoque sceleris indicio ac delatione, impenso precio, et honorum pollicitatione. Ille vero ope divina servatus convaluit, domumque nostram singulari benignitate frequentat. Interim adventu consulis, cujus discessus in Angliam me latuit per id temporis lectulo decumbentem, et vi morbi deploratum, quod erat pactum, conventumque ex utriusque partis sententiâ aliquantulùm turbatur; ob id præcipue, quod status rei celsitudini vestræ nondum innotuerat, cujus optatis ampliori modo quam cupiebat satisfactum ivimus, verborum parci, de rerum substantiâ soliciti, eo tandem religionis moderamine, quo utriusque nationis concordia indies augescere, ac perennare posset; nec ultra progredi nobis licuit. Si quid vero celsitudinem vestram demeruit affectus noster, ab ejusdem benevolentia abunde expectamus, ut celsitudini vestræ, quæ gessimus, probentur et placeant, sicuti nobis promissum et utrisque perutile est. Ego verò cæterique, quorum opera et cura de pace transactum, prompti paratique sumus obsequiis mandatisque vestris obeundis, prout ex officio nostro et celsitudini vestræ reverentia tenemur, quam servet et dirigat in publicum bonum.
A letter of intelligence.
Since Charles came from Brussells, he hath been very merry, and in three weeks hopes to have all his demands from Spain; but to this minute they have not done any thing for him; yet he is so confident, that he will not let Gerard take the command he might have had.
The duke of York hath writ to him, that unless he might be assured, what the Spaniard will do for him, he will go into the field, being much prest to it by the French, which hath much enraged Charles against his brother, and he hath sent Bennet, who is secretary to his brother, into France, to persuade him and command him not to go. If you can foment this by the means of the cardinal, it will much advantage you.
I hear it from Spain, that the states ambassador presseth Charles's business very much. To send you what business's they bring him out of England, is impossible for me to do; they come privately to him, but he I sent you word of, there is one gone over with him, who is to return, by whom I hope to have all. In this packet-boat comes over Mr. Thomas Waters; his brother is in prison with you: he comes from some in the North. It is impossible for me to give you the particulars, nor need I, knowing he useth to come to you: here come very many over to him. I hear he will not have them begin any thing till he hath an army to help them. When I am sent over, I shall be able to serve you with particulars. Middleton is with him, and will be sent away either for Scotland, but I believe for England.
Lockhart, ambassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
My last (save one) of the date 19th instant, mentioned, that his eminence promised me before the end of the last week, his positive and finall answer to the particular relating to the le e v y ing of the foo t and that he shunned speaking to the businesse concerning mo ney. I expected his command to wait upon him till Fryday last; and having heard nothing from him, I then put him in mynd of his promise by Mr. le Abbot Palliott (one of his favorits, to whom I am much oblydged) who told me from his eminence, that he had not been verie well all the last week, and had been much pressed with businesse; and therfore hoped I would excuse him, and that I should not faile to have accesse to him this day or to-morrow. I have sent this morning to Mr. le Abbé to know his eminencie's pleasure concerning my waiting upon him, but dare not promise myself, that honor, till he heare of the safe aryvall of a great convoy of all sorts of provisions, that went yesternight from la Ferre to the camp. It goeth by the way of Guise to Landrechy, where 6000 horse from the camp doe meet it, and joyn with its escorte from this consisting of 2000 foot and as manie horse. Their successe before Valenciennes will depend much upon that of this convoye if the enemie doe not attempt their lyne, or force the convoy before it reach the armie, then all heare doe assure themselves, that they will carrie Valenciennes verie speedilie. But don John hath either of these two hazards for its releese; he lyeth encamped within a league and a half of the French, and is as neare Landrechy as they, if not nearer; and is 20,000 men strong, wherof above one half horse, a strenth greater than anie they did imagine he would be able to make this campagne; and therfore all heare doe waite for the issue of this convoy with some feare.
I intend at first meeting to venture againe upon the propositione concerning mo ney and shall studdie the cardinall's inclinations for it, and take all my other measures as cautioslie as I can. He is a man, that wanteth not his good and bad howers; so that I must adjust my pressing that affaire (home and to the full) to that tyme, that I shall be able to judge the most seasonable for it.
Sir, having no more to say in businesse, I beg leave to discharge my conscience, by letting you know, that I am verie much convinced, that his highnesse affairs heare doe infinetly suffer by my mismanadgment. They doe requyer the addresse of a hand much more
happie then myne; and therfore shall humblie beg, that you may be pleased to lett his highnesse know, how much it concernes his interest heare, that some other person be employed,
whose parts and experience may be more sutable to this trust then myn are. Your favor in
this will not be reckon'd amongst the least of those you have alreadie vouchsased unto,
Your most humble and obedient servant,