A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 5, May 1656 - January 1657. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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July (3 of 6)
Mr. R. Laurence to secretary Thurloe.
Right worshipfull sir,
My last was of the 4th; since which I understand, that it hath pleased his highnes to owne sir Tho. Bendish as his ambassador, and hath likewise sent him a leter for the grand segnior; wherein, as I am advised, satisfaction is required for the shipp George, some tyme since taken by the pyrates of Tunis; which letter was delivered the 5th of this month. What your ambassador sayd at the deliverie of the letter is not yet knowne to any one but himselfe and his drugerman, no one else being permitted to here what was spoken; and indeed there went but few of the nation with him, for he calls none to his assistance, who at any tyme is knowne to come nere mee. But this I am confident of, that there is nothing in reason, that can bee demanded, but it will be granted at this tyme, if he doe his busines with resolution, and not buy all with mony, as hath bine usuall heretofore. And indeed there cannot bee less expected from the grand signor then to grant commands for satisfaction, hee haveing alwaies pretended, that what those persons have donn, hath bine noe other than thiest, of which in short tyme you will heare the evente; for never were there such a tyme to obtain ought from the Turks as now; for first the Venetian hath taken and burnt well nigh all theire sea forces, as I advised in my last; and since they have landed their men upon Tenedoes island, and beseidged the castle. If they take it, it will bee of verie greate use unto them. First, it will bee a place of safety for theire fleete: secondly, it will furnish them with water: and thirdly no vessels can goe in or out for this port but they may speake with them, if they please, it lying not above eight leagues from the castle, and just in the trade. The people here they are divided; some will not goe into the warrs, being rich, and have lived longe at ease; others hold the warr unlawfull. The greate men they envie one another. Some are for the raighning of the grand senior; others for the seting up of his brother; and for which purpose there hath bine an atempt made within this few dayes, which is now discovered, and the mustee and others are banished, and some others within the serraglia have lost their lives; soe that things are here in no certaintie, and in the end I conceave either the grand fignor will cut of his brother, who is now a prisoner, or other people will cut of him, and set up his brother, of which you will here more in a little tyme. The Turkes pretend, that they will sudainly send an army for Clissa and Jarra, unto which places they cannot march without goeing into the emperor's country. They intend to proffer him greate matters, that they may passe quietly; but if hee refuse to accept of theire proffer, they intend to force theire way; soe that if they doe goe, it is probable there may be a breach between the Turke and them; soe that, as I sayd before, those people are in such a condition, that they cannot denie any reasonable thing unto them, that desire it. Here hath bine an agent from the kinge of Polland, seeking a continuance of ametie betweene him and the grand signor, and likewise desires his consent, that the Tarters might assist him in his war against the kinge of Sweathland. His desires are granted, and the agent is to returne in a few dayes.
As yet I have not received any order or consent for my quitting of this place; I hope I shall ere longe, if the state intend itt: soe soone as their order shall come unto my hands, I shall give readie obedience, thereunto, and make all possible speed I may to give you an account how sir Tho. Bendish hath layd his designes. In the meane tyme committ you to God's protection, and shall alwaies remaine
Lockhart, ambassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your honor,
In my last I gave a generall account of the loss sustained before Valenciennes. The inclosed will give it more particular. I had no sooner made my dispatch to your honour, and given notice of that businesse to his highnesse's resident in Switzerland, and com. extraordinarie at Geneva, but by letter I signified to his eminence my regraits for that losse, and gave him as hansome a compliment as I could. That evening I had a verie civill return, wherein he assured me, that so soone as he was in condition to take anie new resolu tions, he would acquaint me, and advise with me about them. The bearer told me, he lest him in the coach with the king and queen, who were going to take the air, and pretended to be verie little concerned in their losse. The king hath protested publicklie, that he will reaseedge the place, and is resolved to carry it in spyte of all oppositions; but I beleive their is nothing lesse intended.
Having enqwyered all I can concerning mons. de Lion his jorney into Spain, I synd by some interessed in the court, that they beleev he goes for Portugall. He went by the way of Poictu to Rochelle, where its said he embarked. He had certainlie a nearer way to Spain; howsoever at first meeting I shall speake freelie to his eminence about it, and shall give an account of his answere.
I am glad to heare of the meeting of a parliament from the hops I have the Lord will give them a healing spiritt, and make them instrumentall in settling the nations. Such a seasonable mercie will (besides the advantages you will receive from it at home) exceedinglie highten the reputatione of your affairs abroad. Several of the protestant de put ies were with me last week, and also several of the mi n if trye They are all of them highly dis con t ent ed. They have hard usage since the mee t inge of the clergie of France. Their eies are much upon the protector He is privatlie pr ay ed for in all their church es. If the pe a ce with Spayne be, I beleive you may find the k. of France work att ho me; but there being no certainty of their intentions as to that, I took it to be my dutie (after I had given assurance of his high nesse his res pe ck ts to them to sweeten their f pi ri ts all I could, and did lay be for e them the dangerous consequences that may ar i se from any ra s h attempt. This being a verie tender business, I have troubled you with many cyphers in it, for which I beg pardon.
I forbare to trouble you with what passed at Bologne, the place being so near you. The ill example of it may be of dangerous consequence. There are great differences between the merchants at Marseilles and Mr. Aldworth, who hath his highnesse's commissione to be confull their. The merchants have obtained an arrest from the magistrats of the place in prejudice of the consull his executing of his office. Both parties have writt to me in it, and severall other merchants, who owne the interest of the merchants at Marseilles. I have signified my dissatisfactione with their proceedings, who have owned a forrein power in a businesse was onlie decydable by his highnesse, and hath promised both to represent the businesse to your honour. The papers concerning it shall be sent by the next; and I have scarce so much tyme lest me, as to tell you with how much sincerity I am,
Capt. R. Claye to secretary Thurloe.
The 19th day of June I received order from the right honourable the general of the fleet att sea, they being at anchor off Castuies road nere Lisbon, for me to take captain Lloyd on board our frigott, and with the quantitie of 29 chests of money, and in company of the Phænix frigott, to make sayle for England; and when arived here to give account thereof unto your honour, that care might be taken att our arrival at Gravesend for the said money to be sent for. Herewith I have sent up a copie of my instructions, humbly craving leave to subscribe myselfe,
A letter of intelligence.
The King of Sweden with his forces continue yet at Nowodwor, at a river called Buck, and strives to pass the great river called the Weessel; but the water is arisen so high, and so strong, that it hath taken away our and the enemies bridge, so that none can come to the other; and this hath been a notorious hindrance to the king of Sweden, that he could not effect his intention; but as soon as the water shall sall, we shall be hard at it to repair the bridge. Concerning the Swedish garrison, that lay at Warsaw, when king Casimire took it, it is very certain, that they are kept very close in the castle of Warsaw from the Polander, and king Casimit's guard watched them; likewise the general Wittenburgh, Oxenstern, Weihir, Canterstern, and other officers more, contrary to their promise, and accord made betwixt them at the surrendering of the city. Some write from Thorn, that king Casimire sent the abovesaid commanders prisoners from Warsaw to Samvisch, a very strong place, for more security. King Casimire hath taken Petterkaw, a place of no great note; but the Swedish garrison within got no quarter. My lord Douglas is gone with 3000 horse to relieve a strong castle called Tichoczin in Podlachia, belonging to the duke of Radtziwill. Some part of the duke of Brandenburgh's forces are to follow him. The king of Sweden and all his is very much offended, that the Polander kept not the accord made at Warsaw. The Quartians and the nobility of Poland are in great diffension with their king Casimire; they demand payment and continual war with the Swede, and were ready to plunder the Swedish garrison at Warsaw; but king Casimire inclines to peace, and desires to save the Swede.
An intercepted letter.
My lord, my much honoured brother,
What great troubles seem to fall upon our country after great successes, you shall without fail know out of divers parts. I do send you here inclosed our letters out of Narven and Ingermanland, but instead to turn us to vain complaints, we must fall to almighty God, and hope by his grace the best chance, doing thereby our endeavours to take all possible and honest means at hand against it. My loved brother is in a place, where our interest must be well looked to, and from whence a great support is to be hoped. To your information will serve, that we stand in a treaty with the ambassadors of the Low Countries, and have hitherto no reason to complain of their persons, or judge that these are ill affectionated; but when we compare the reports out of the Sound and their countenance in that place, then they are quite different. I conclude out of that, that the opinions of the Low Countries are different, and those that do so, nearer his majesties intentions; and what his counsels do aim at, judge reasonable of them, and perceive what danger is hidden under these counsels, that separates from each other, and then leave us both to a prey. The others are governed by a Spanish spirit, and as I perceive do endeavour to separate us from England, and France, if it were possible. That my loving brother knows, without question, from other places, and endeavours to prevent it. When I speak considently with the ambassadors of the United Provinces, then I use those reasons, who our common enemies do very well perceive, that so long we are not totally separated, and that there is any hope of composition amongst us, then they cannot promote their intentions against the protestant interest in any one state in particular; for that reason they have first made their business to weaken the good correspondence with France and the United Provinces; do awake troubles twixt us and that state, and make a division between England and Holland; so that when the Low Countries are separated from all their friends, and they have themselves endeavoured to weaken their forces, then it will at last fall into their greatest enemies mouth, and come to their prima principia. My loving brother doth well after my judgment to make appear in England, before he goes, that it is very necessary for my lord protector to take the present counsels of the United Provinces in weighty consideration: first he is obliged by our alliance to take our part, and assist us, when we are troubled in our clear right and trade in the Baltic sea, which doth happen now with greatest injustice, when no amicable means that we offer are looked upon; besides that his interest doth oblige him to it, because if he lets us without one assistance, and that he returns not Holland from its wrong intentions, and we do fall out with one another, then he will be lest alone, and Spain with the house of Stuart, and the ill affected party in Holland, will endeavour to weaken his forces at sea, and awake troubles within the country, whereof I have great and secure intelligence. And it is very important for my lord protector to take this in consideration. It is a matter too of great facility to him, for to stop those the Hollanders undertakings, because they will scarcely engage themselves too much, before they are assured of him, that he will sit quiet. Besides that this means is ready, that because the Lovenstein lords are now ours and my lord protector's greatest enemies, that I am persuaded my lord protector sufficiently knows them, he can with a good mien draw Zealand and all the house of Orange to his party, and win by that way all the United Provinces on his side. I believe, that our earnest ambassy and remonstration of my lord protector to the said provinces shall be able to deturn very much the Spanish counsels in the Low Countries. Momenta temporum nunc sunt preciosissima; and what will be done, must be done betimes. And detrimentum ingens aut egregium bonum will fall out of these conjunctions for the protestant cause. To draw Sweden, England, France, and the Low Countries together in one interest, that is our design, and we all work to that, and so much as circumstances do permit; and what shall be done, must be done by time, and with earnest, &c.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
This day was produced the provincial advice of Groningen concerning the business of Dantzick, containing a confirmation for the advice of Holland, upon condition however, that care be taken, that the frontiers of the province of Groningen be provided with more garrisons.
Those of Zealand have not yet produced any thing, but are to have first of all a conference with those of Holland. And it is assured, that those of Zealand will represent, amongst the rest, that during the English war they run themselves into debt. That likewise they spent much more than the other provinces, according to their share. That they do not find themselves so much interested in this business of Prussia; that likewise they ought not to precipitate themselves into a war; and likewise they will endeavour to moderate the business.
Those of Utrecht have not yet produced any advice, but will also endeavour to moderate the business; that it be declared to preserve Dantzick, and withall to remain in amity with Sweden. In the mean time the ambassadors at Marienburgh have already declared by a writing signed by them, that they will observe the treaty of Stockholm, yea amplify it. Now the 7th article of the said treaty faith, that it is prohibited for one ally to navigate to a place besieged by an ally. Yet notwithstanding these ambassadors having already received the provisional resolution, that this state would really assist Dantzick, the ambassadors found themselves perplexed therewith; but the taking or not taking of Warsaw will regulate that.
Those of Holland having a mind to draw unto controversy to day and yesterday the commission of four nominated for the chamber of accounts, and the president therefore delaying to conclude, a chief one of the assembly said, How do men make difficulty now to conclude with six provinces the commission of master of accounts; and they made no difficulty to conclude a war a few days since with 2½ provinces!
The great Baltic business and that of Dantzick was yesterday in debate, but is still in conference between those of Holland and Zealand. These last give to understand, that they are a very little interested in it; and that which they do in it, that it will be for the interest of Holland; and that therefore they will do something; but besides the considerations formerly mentioned, that they will not do it but salva pace; whereupon Holland hath represented to them, that the relief by the fleet, and the subsidy of money are purely auxiliary, and no rupture.
A second point, for which those of Zealand are come, is the verdict of reestablishment, which the court of Holland hath decreed for the lord of Stavenisse, who hath been deprived of his charge of one of the councel of Ter Toolen.
There hath been notification given, that the admiralty of Amsterdam doth equip seven good ships for the Mediterranean sea, to which the city of Amsterdam had added two of their own. Men do not apprehend here, why they cannot receive the resident Sasburgh at Brussels, till they receive advice from his majesty at Madrid, as hath been reported in the assembly.
Already are come letters from Koningsburgh of the 17 July, containing, that the Swedes had won some pass upon the Buck; but that Warsaw was surrendered. On the 8th were no ships yet come before Dantzick. The admiralty of Zealand hath signified, that they have furnished ten ships for the fleet in the Sound; and as to the other four that remain yet unequipt, they desire that money may be provided for it, if they desire to have them equipt; whereupon they have writ to the provinces.
And the ambassador of Spain, if I am told the truth, hath buzzed this state in the ear by a memorandum, that the protector had certainly made a strict league with Sweden. Item, he hath demanded leave to export 44 pieces of ordnance from Amsterdam. The states of Overyssel at Deventer, who are the members at Deventer and Twent, have writ, that they do conform themselves with Holland for the affairs of the Baltic sea and of Dantzick; but the other four members, Sallent, Vollenhove, Campen, Swoll, do continue to declare, that they are incapable as long as they are divided amongst themselves.
Those of Twent and Deventer have only writ a single letter to the lord Beeke, containing, that they conform themselves with Holland concerning the Baltic affair, without having writ any thing of it to the States General; with this provision and stipulation as those of Groningen did, that care be taken of their frontiers, not to suffer any invasions and inrodes.
The lord ambassador Nieupert hath writ, that the lord ambassador Whitlocke having been in Sweden, had not done any thing effectually there, but a maritime treaty, and one of free entrance; in which treaty was nothing wanting, but the form of a sea-pass or certificate. Now the Swedish ambassador Bond in England had done nothing but finished that form of a sea-pass, without the protector had engaged himself in any other treaty with Sweden; so that nothing is believed of the notification, as if the protector and Sweden had concluded a great and near conjunction. That which I said of 44 pieces of ordnance, are guns, which this state hath caused to be bought in Spain; and whereof the lord ambassador hath declared, that his majesty hath agreed to the exportation.
Here is come an answer from the duke of Brunswick to the letter, which this state had writ in favour of prince William, for the payment, which he pretends of the said duke; which answer is conformable to the foregoing iteratives, that those dukes are not obliged to pay the debts, which their ancestors made upon their estates, which are fiess; they having no power to engage them.
The ambassador Nieuport doth also write, that he doth all what he can to advance the maritime treaty; but that at present the council of the protector is so busied in the affairs for the calling of the parliament, that he cannot advance any thing. He writes also, that the ambassador hath had audience; having said nothing but spoken magnificently of the conjunction of the arms of Brandenburgh with those of Sweden.
There hath been a complaint made by the ambassador of Spain, how that there had been a project made, and proposed by those of Holland, to make a new league with France and England; yea with exclusion, or without mention of Spain.
The Danish resident to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
The resident of Denmark having seen several complaints, which were made by skippers trading to Norway, as also the resolution of the states of Holland of the 23d of June, 1656; wherefore the said resident doth conceive, that before the said resolution be confirmed by their high and mighty lordships, being contrary to the treaty, that he may be admitted to a conference with some of your high and mighty lordships commissioners, to examine that business on both sides, and to adjust the same; that the treaty may be maintained in its vigour, and that the tolls and duties belonging to his majesty may be justly paid, and the inhabitants of their high and mighty lordships freed from all discontents; and in regard this request is but just and reasonable, he the said resident doubts not but your high and mighty lordships will grant the same.
Courtin to Bordeaux, the French ambassador in England.
In my last I gave you advice of the assembly of the states of Holland to repass attentively upon all the deliberations, which they have taken upon the affairs of the commerce of the Baltic sea. In this assembly some commissioners of Zealand, by the considerations which they made there upon the good and upon the bad, which these provinces will receive by sending their fleet into the Baltic sea, did stir up some doubts in the minds of the lords of Holland, who did appear unresolved since the news of the taking of Warsaw, which seemeth to draw the fortune on the side of the Poles; which hath caused the assembly to separate without concluding any thing, and each commissioner is gone to confer with his principals. It is probable at their return, that Holland will stick to its first resolution, to relieve Dantzick; and the rather, because the syndic hath presented a memorandum of late to the states, wherein those of Dantzick promise to use the Hollanders as their own natives.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Upon the calling of a parliament in England the States General and states of Holland discourse after their manner. The ambassador doth mince almost all considerable correspondence with states of Holl. but raedt. pens. hath all. All have had a very great apprehension, for fear that the ships of war of protector might come before Ostend, Dunkirk, item towards east sea. The states of Holland do admire at it. One giveth this reason, the other giveth another reason; the most probable doth seem unto them to be the impuissance of protector, having employed his ships of war all elsewhere.
They do not consider, that the protector hath not offered a near alliance but to the States General alone, namely in the year 1651; but since States General would not, he would not make a near alliance with any other, but only some simple alliance. It is seen and known, if protector had had a mind to have drawn advantage from east sea, he might have had of Sweden all his desire; but protector is not so covetous for himself, nor so envious against states of Holl. as states of Holl do seem to be against all others; at least they shew the satisfaction, which they have, that those of protector in Dantzick are used with some rigour; insomuch that it must be, that the ambassador must have very much assured the raedt pensionary, that the protector would not meddle henceforward with east sea states of as Holland did fear; and thereupon the states of Holland have pressed the ships of war towards Dantzick, which without that they would not have done. In the mean time I am still in the opinion, that these ships of war are a needless expence, and will not do the business, if Sweden can maintain himself where he is, and can repulse the k. of Poland; but if he cannot do that, royal and ducal Prussia and all will redress itself.
Formerly also you know, that states of Holland have caused to be proposed a project of alliance as well with protector as with Brandenburg; but since the disgraces, which are happened to Brandenburg and Sweden, there is no more mention made of that.
As to the treaties between Brandenburg and Sweden, that doth also seem to me to be ridiculous, for
States Gen. will do nothing, if Sweden doth not quit the royal Prussia. I remain
[22 July, 1656. N. S.]
To the Danish agent.
The inclosed is a list of the prisoners taken at Valenciennes. The marshal de Turenne made his retreat in good order with 12,000 men. Near to Quesnoy he met 6000 more, where he still remains; and our army, which followed him into those parts, is still there to hinder more forces from coming to him, and to facilitate the sieges, which were designed to be made. Here is a report, that Conde is besieged, but thereof is no certainty. The earl of Grand-Pre, who was wounded, when he was taken, is since dead of his wound. The loss on our side is not above 200 slain. Now we are a little in heart again, and the French fall short of their designs; and we hope through the great valour of our don John to be able to make some further conquest upon the French.
A letter of intelligence.
L'Espagne estoit dans la plus epouvantable misere & dans le plus malheureux etat du monde, si Valenciennes si sut pris, etant epuisée d'argent, & n'ayant pas grandes trouppes, on auroit vu des grands changemens en Flandrie. Mons. le prince a la plus grande part dans cette victorie, comme les Espagnols même l'avouent. Il y a un traitté fait entre l'Espagne & le roy d'Ecosse, dont la confirmation est desia venue d'Espagne depuis peu de jours. Mais il n'y a pas grande liaison dans ce traitté, ni engagement du coté de l'Espagne de donner de secours au roy d'Ecosse. Car l'Espagne n'a pas volu se declarer ouvertement pour luy, asin d'estre toujours en etat de pouvoir faire la paix plus aisement avec l'Angleterre, & qu'ils ne pourroient pas si bien, s'il y avoit quelque grand engagement avec la roy d'Ecosse. Il est vrai, que peutetre cette victoire de Valenciennes pourra leur faire changer de resolution de leur donner plus de courage; de quoy j'aura connoissance, & vous donneray advis. Cependant l'Angleterre n'a pas de rien apprehender du cotè de Flanders, ou l'on est dans une si grande misere, qu'on n'est pas en etat de donner beaucoup de secours au roy d'Ecosse, & memes je ne scay, si on pourra seulement lui donner de l'argent pour avoir du pain. Je veilleray a tout, & vous advertiray.
Monsieur le prince du Condé a eu des grands conferences en secret avec le mareshall la Ferté, qui doit commencer par le moyen de ses amis quelque traité avec le cardinal. Je croy, que le succes de Valenciennes pourra faciliter l'accommodement de monsieur le prince de Condé, ou memes avancer la paix generale entre les deux couronnes, pour laquelles vous scaves qu'il y a un traite qui se fait.
An intercepted letter of lord Dillon to sir Luke Fitzgerald.
The late accident that happened at Valenciennes hath changed the face of affairs here, which were most desperate and sad before, and I believe will alter most of the affairs of Christendom. I pray God it prove for the best, as I hope it will. This inclosed will save the labour of relating that day's work at Valenciennes. I have no notice of what Irish are killed. Intelligence is now come, that marshal Turenne is now 16000 in a body near Quesnoy, and the Spaniards 25,000 near him. It is believed, they will force him to fight.
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major general of the army in Ireland.
This bearer, one of the messengers of the councell, is sent to your lordship and the rest of the councell in Ireland, with the writts of sumon for the next parlament. The care of sendinge them was referred to my lord deputye, who, I suppose, will write to the councell to send the writte to the severall sheriffs, that the elections may be made in tyme.
Since my last upon tuesday night wee have received letters from the generalls at sea, who are still upon the coast of Spayne, wayteinge the opportunitie of service, which they yet have not had, the Spaniard keepeinge his post. By their beinge in those seas, they have made and concluded the peace with Portugall, which otherwise had never beene; and the 50,000 l. due upon that treatye is alsoe payd, and sent home by two of the ships. Mr. Meadowe the agent was shott through the hand by assassinates. It was ten thousand to one, that he had not been slayne. It was done in revenge of don Panteleon. The persons are not taken. This is all the newes, that wee have from the fleet.
The last letters from Flanders bringe us newes, that the Spanyard beat the French in their
trenches, and have routed the whole army, taken all their ordnance, bagge, and baggage,
and most of their foot. This is a very great bissines for the Spanyard, if it prove true.
The next letters on monday will let us see the full truth. Haveinge nothinge else to trouble
your lordship with, I rest
12 July, 1656.
Commissioner Pels to the States General.
High and mighty lords,
Since my last of the 19th of July is not any thing more to be mentioned at present, than that they advise from Koningsberg, that the Swedish army was at Sakrotsin, six miles from Warsaw; and the duke of Brandenburgh with his within a mile of him. The king of Poland being also not far from thence, it is to be supposed, that there will be some battle between them very suddenly; but the said duke doth endeavour, what he can, to make peace between the said kings; and the French resident, mons. de Lombres, doth use great endeavours for the same end.
An intercepted letter of Mr. Rob. Sibbs to Mr. David Frizell.
An intercepted letter of H. Bennet to my lady Bennet.
The uncertainty of my removes from Germany unto Flanders, and from thence since unto these parts, hath hindered me from writing this long while to your ladyship. I have heard nothing yet from my brother, but conclude him very well, because I am assured he was not in this action, wherein this side have lately sustained so great a loss. His regiment lies in Conde, which it is here feared the Spaniards will besiege.
A letter of intelligence.
My last is of the 7 and 11 currant. Let Tribe / Mr. secretary Thurloe be consident what I axd advised hem conserning Creame, / card. Mazarin, that hee father / treats of palme / peace with Liver. / don Louis de Haro. Wheather Creame / card. Mazarin intends really I cannot tel; for hee uses such proseedings to put men in hoaps, and to divert them. As for Starmer / Scots king I seind out, that there is not a real understanding betweene hem and Sparter, / Spain, for they have an opinion of hem, that hee is a man of noe great understanding. Secondly, they will hardly eaver trust Starmer croude. / Scots king counsel. They say they have to good an understanding with protector. Heere are men of importance, that none can tel whome they are; only Sparter / Span. king and three more. Many reports are of them; and the strongest, that it is Starmer; / Scots king; but it is noe such matter. It is, as I advised in my last, at least they that are heere about the palme, / peace, are heere privatly. The presedent of Pantba / Portugal that is heere made a mosion to Sparter / Spain to see if hee would make palme / peace with Pantba / Portugal. It is these five dayes in agitasion in the croude, / council of state, and noathing effected as yet. Within two posts you shall have the certain time of it, and what they will resolve. Heere is noe certaintie as yet, that protrax / protector has maed palme / peace with Pantba, / Portugal, but Liver's Starke / Louis de Haro's secretary tould me, they had the certaintie, that it is don; but you know best. Liver / Louis de Haro is making severall agreements for Stakes / ships to be bult in this kingdom. He will set out noe fish / fleet, while yours are uppon the cost, that they are resolved and max / money is much wanting. If I had max / money, I could a gon to Clyrr, / Cadiz, and ax / advise all the fish / ships there, and could doe much more. If I had but som presents there hense to give to Liver's Starke, / Louis de Haro's secretary, for noathing can be don without max; / money; and if I could recover any of my owne, I would not desire any now; nor doe I not desire it, but knowing that it would availe you much, for I intend really to service your. I would advies more at large, if I weare sur you receave myne. I rest
Lockhart, embassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
It seems the court heare will speend so much tyme in resolving what to doe next, that they will loose all opportunitie of doeing any thinge, and I am even wearied out with their delayes and excuses; and tho' they give it out heare, that his highnesse is sending over 15000 men for their assistance, and speak it with that considence, that a captaine of the guards enqwyered at one I sent to court upon saturday last, when they might expect my retorn, beleiving I was gonn to bring them over, yet I know, that it is much debated, whether they shall make use of anie forces from England in this conjuncture of their affaires. The reasons against it are the heightning of the disatisfactions of the clergie and the bigott parties, who impute the cause of this losse to the king's employing a protestant generall, and his allyance with you, whom they call hereticks. Another is their expectatione to heare what successe the overturs for a peace may have. Since my last I had some discourse with prince Francis of Lorrain, to whom I allwayes pretend, that I have great inclinations for a general peace. He tells me, that Mr. de Lion is in Spain, and that he hath good hopes his negotiatione for a peace will be prosperus. He is not much upon their secretts heare, and yett I think may be believed as to that of Mr. de Lion his being their for that end.
Yesterday I had the honor to receave one from you in Mr. Morrell's behalf. It was dated the 3d of July; and least my endeavors for the merchants may be misrepresented, I have made bold to send you an account of what hath been done for them since my coming heare; and may assure your honor, that I have not been addressed unto in our businesse concerning them, whereof I have not obtained for them all that can be demanded at court, and have taken out all the letters at my own expense, so that the good or bad successe of their business must depend upon their active prosecuting of it before the respective courts. I have also writt to all the ministers of state in their behalf, and have sent you a coppie of Mr. d'Allegre's returne, who is president of the counsell marine, and after the chancellor the second person in all his majestie's counsells. Sir, having nothing further, save what is contained in the inclosed, I beg leave to kisse your hands in that humilitie, which becomes,
Inclosed in the preceding.
I Have ventured 200 l. one way, and 50 another, in order to the set l ing a in tell i ge n ce. The I gave one who I believe tell s me all he knows but know s not much that is considerable; howsever I took it to be my dewtie to encourage his good will he is much employed between the cardinal and queen, and is made use of in all the cardinal his me sa ge s of civilitie to mee.
The o th er is a pe r son that can be notablie usefull if he can be made will inge. His na me is On de dy. He is one of the cardinal his se c re ta ry s and a It a li an, and soe not naturalie engaged for France. Hee is verry ny ce, and did take it under no notion but that of my gratitude for the dis pa t ch of the me r ch and s business. Hee is so great a con si de nt that its believed card. Maz intends hee shall succed him in the mi ny s try of s ta te He is as much a gentleman as anie I have mett with here, but lovs mo ny. Till I be in a place, where the court is, and can have the occasion of often conversing with him, I dare not venture to propose the businesse plainlie, tho' I thinke he understands me well enoff. I humblie beseech you pardon the troble you receive in this from,
A letter of intelligence.
In my last I writ you word, how we found mons. Turenne encamped in such an advantageous place, that we did not judge it fit to assault him, which caused our generals to return towards Conde, near which we have encamped for these two days, during which we have been busy to take some forts and castles, which the French have hereabouts. The common opinion is, that afterwards we shall besiege Conde. There is not yet any thing resolved, but all things appear, as if that were the design. We do not hear, that the enemy is gone from Quesnoy. Our army is very strong and gallant: I can assure you it is strong 18000 foot, and 12000 horse.
Nieupoort, the Dutch ambassador, to secretary Thurloe.
Cornelius Everts junior, captain of a ship of war in the immediate service of the States General of the United Provinces, hath certified unto me, how and in what manner he being a convoy hath been disturbed in his passage at sea with three merchant ships belonging to citizens and inhabitants of Meddleborow and Flushing in Zealand, bound also to the same cities, with their lading of woolls and iron from Bilboa in Biscay, and forced by some frigats in the immediate service of this state into the Downs; which action I conceive to be of such a consequence, that I find myself obliged to intreat your honour, that as soon as his most serene highness's occasions will permit it, I may be admitted to a private audience; assuring your honour, that I remain,
Major general Whalley to secretary Thurloe.
I Shall now onely mynde you of some thinges, which in my hast in my last made me forgett. Horse stealers, robbers, and other condemned rogues lye in the gaols. To continue them there is a charge to the countrey; to give them liberty here, is to make more; and your this long forbearing them without sending them beyond the seas, I feare, hath encreased the number, to the dissatisfaction of the country. When you expect great thinges from them, you shall doe well to gratisie them with as many smal things as you can. The clearing the gaoles and countreyes of rogues would be very pleasing to them. Your last instructions wil be very difficult for us to put in execution, these countryes, all but Lyncolnshire, being the mediterannean of this nation, and few or no merchants in any part of Lyncolnshire; wee shall make the best enquiry we can; for the sending away, though but a few, would have a great influence upon the rest. There are many other thinges, that would be verry acceptable to the country, which by the grand juryes in these countrys were desired. You have them in our propositions, and you may quickly doe them; and I wish they were dispatched before the sizes, for in vayne it is for either the countrey or us to propose good thinges, if after they come to you, they shal be buryed. That amongst other of waytes and measures, the inequalitie of them was presented as a grievance by all the grand juries of these counties; and truly it would bee thought very strange at these assizes, that after com playnt of such a grievance, nothing should be donne in it. I confesse I should be ashamed to appeare in the face of the country; however I should have nothing to say, why it is not done. All that is desired, as you may see in our propositions, is, that the councill would be pleased to issue out a proclamation throughout England to reduce waightes and measures to one standard, to begin at a certayne day prefixed; and commend the care of it to the major generalls. I would see it donne in these counties by a law alreadye establishd; but should it be onely here put in execution, I should be injurious to them. Sir, I have in the face of all my counties, on the behalfe of his highnes and the councell [declared] that they cannot be so forward to desire and propound any thinge for the good of the countrie, but his highness and the councell will be as forward to promote it; and I doubt not but it wil be made good; and that they may doe abundantly more, is the prayer of,
Nott. 14 July, 1656.
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburg, to secretary Thurloe.
I Did verilie beleive, that by this post I should have heard of the councell's resolution in Mr. Townley's business; but instead thereof I heare of a letter of great encouragement from him to his partie heere, wherein he desires them to take noe further care for him, for that now the worst was past, he beinge assured from a good freind, that the business should goe well on his syde. Indeed delay doth doe the worke as effectually for that faction, as a sentence in their favour. I shall not trouble his highness or the councell with any further addresses. If what I have said and done, prevaile not for a just vindication, I may well conclude more will not doe it. My adversaries are at such a height, as that I carry my life in my hand, which is but an uncomfortable kind of liveinge. I have heard of the danger your agent was in at Lisbone. Myne is not less every day, it beinge noe small encouragement to vilanes to see me soe longe lest under such intollerable indighities.
The inclosed is an extract of the last letter from my new correspondent, dated from Elbinge, but comes out of the Swedish armie. I doubt the king of Sweden will be hard put to it to withstand the forces of the Pole, and his consederats, the emperor and Muscoviter. There are some Scotch companies arrived at Rostocke and other ports in the Baltique.
Sir, it beinge now two years the 25th of March last since I charged my bills on the state
for my allowance, I beinge in present want, have this day made bold to drawe my bill upon
the councell for 400 l. for this haulse yeare to Michaelmas next, requestinge your honour
to procure an order for payment thereof to my servant Hudson, on whom I charged the
money longe since, which will come due for him to pay at the tyme, when he is to receive this
400 l. For the two former years I shall charge it to the state's account, hopeinge to raise
money from the powder for it, though it will be hardly sufficient, when it comes 6 or 8
months hence. I remayne
Hamburgh, 15 July, 1656.
A letter of intelligence.
The news doth still continue, that his majesty of Poland and his council fearing the revolt of the Polish nobility, durst not make good the articles granted to the Swedish garrison of Warsaw, whereof the chiefest are sent prisoners to Samoscie, being pitifully misused by them upon the way.
They write from Marienburgh of the 20 current, that his majesty of Sweden was advanced with his army as far as Zacrotzin, and was resolved to fight his enemy; but in regard the king of Poland is 80000 strong, and expecting of him near Warsaw, the king of Sweden, it is thought, will delay a while his resolution of sighting with him; for if the number of both parties be considered, the Swedes would run no small hazard of being beaten; and in case he should be beaten, it is easily apprehended, in what condition his affairs would be. It is still hoped here, that a peace will be made between the two parties; but most fear, that the Pole is too far engaged with the Muscovite, and so hath no absolute power. The duke of Brandenburgh is also said to be very much inclined to peace, and is very busy to induce both kings to it. Cracow, though no certain news be come of it, yet it is believed to have sollowed the example of Warsaw; and that the major general Wurts, the governor thereof, had received no less ill usage than him of Warsaw. These two capital cities being taken from the Swedes, that, which is still remaining in their hands, may be counted of no great consideration.
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major general of the army in Ireland.
I Doe judge, that your lordship as well as some others have had your tryalls upon occasion of the anger and peevishnes of some mens spirits, who are well acquainted with the wayes of provokeinge of those in authoritie, and love to be sound in them, hopeinge thereby either to wearye out those they like not with their continuall droppinges, or to put them upon some harsh and unpleasinge actions against them, that soe they may have some colour at least to cry persecution. This latter they have not beene able to provoake your lordship to; neither I hope will they to the former, which I beleeve is most their desire; and their saileinge in it will be their greatest disappointment, and a true argument of the constancy, stability, and patience of your spirit, which haveinge its owne, and the wittnes of God too, as to your love and tendernes towards them, who yet requite you evill for good, will be able to keepe on in the worke and bussines, which God hath placed you in, with joy and cheerfullnes. And although your lordship may have jealousie from somethinge, which hath either been done here, or writt from hence, that the misinformations of troublesome men have made great and ill impressions upon his highnes concerninge your lordship; I have before, and doe still assure you, there is noe such matter. His highnes had reason from what he sawe in the frame and temper of some men's spirits, to use the best meanes he could to have satisfaction in his owne spirit concerneinge the true state of the asfaires of Ireland, and your lordship's manadgment thereof; and to that purpose, as he hath fully informed hymselfe of some here, soe he was willing to speak with major Morgan, who is thought to knowe much; for which cause he is sent for over. And I doe assure your lordship, that his enquirie into these matters hitherto, hath not proved to your prejudice, but hath beene a ground of comfort to his highnes, and of confidence to speake the more freely concerninge you, where it may be necessary. And as for doctor Harrison and sir John Reynolds, I can give your lordship noe account of the former, haveinge had very little or noe converse with hym, since his comeinge; nor can I truly say, what is the reason of his not goeinge hence; but sure I am, it's not for his faithfullnes and affection to your lordship, nor (as I beleeve) for any the reasons your lordship imagines; for the clearinge whereof I must either referre myselfe to a little tyme, or till I may have the honor to see your lordship. And for sir John Reynolds, noe body keepes hym here but hymselfe, it beinge the great desire both of his highnes and others, that he would make hast to you; and I suppose he will begin his journey to you sometyme this weeke, by whom your lordship may expect to have an account of thinges more particulerly. A messenger went from hence upon saterday morneinge last, with writts for sumoninge members to serve in parliament for Ireland, who, I suppose, will be arrived before this. I am of oppinion with your lordship, that care is to be taken for chooseinge men of honestie and integritie. The peace and welfare of the nation will be much concerned in the temper of this parliament. Wee hope for good from it; and that wee shall have none of those, who dureinge the last parlament were continueinge very bloody designes against the protector and peace of the nation, and used all endeavours to seduce the armye from their integritie and obedience. This we are sure of, and I think it extremely necessary to be knowne, what the temper of the army in Ireland is, which I suppose your lordship is well able to knowe; I meane, not only of the cheise officers, but of those who are more inferiour; that some measure may be taken, what may be expected from them, in case of extremitie. I am sure all imaginable methods will be used to debauch and seduce them; engins are already at worke to that purpose here, although I hope without any great fruit. Upon friday last wee had letters from the fleet and from Lisbon; the fleet hath beene upon noe action, since that their beinge upon that coast hath brought the kinge of Portugall to agree the peace, which certeinely he had otherwise never done; and did deserre the doeinge thereof untill the fleet came before his port of Lisbon, in a condition to seise upon his Braziel fleet, which they expected every moment. Mr. Meadowe his highnes agent there is shott through the lest hand by 2 assasinates, who intended to murder hym; and it was God's great goodnes to hym, that he escaped, 4 bulletts beinge shott at hym out of 2 carbines into the horse litter, where he satt; one whereof was discharged so neare, that it singed his haire; and his head was leaninge upon the hand, which was shott thorough.
By our letters yesterday from France it is confirmed, that the seidge of Valencienne is raysed by the Spanyard, who upon the Lord's day was senight in the morneinge assaulted the trenches of the French. The quarter they assaulted was la Ferte's, a mareshall of France, where after 2 repulses they brake in, and destroyed, and tooke his whole partie, which consisted of about 8000 men, with his whole traine, bag and baggage, and made hymselfe prisoner. In the meane tyme mareshall Turenne the generall with his army stood and looked on, not beinge able to come in to the releise of la Ferte, the bridge of communication over the river haveinge beene broke downe by the Spanyard before the assault; only he made a shift to get over, 3 regiments of foot, who were all cutt of. Turenne marched away with his body consistinge of 12000 horse and foot, with all his ordinance and baggage, to a place some 5 miles of; and there met a convoy of 6000 men, who were goinge to their camp with provisions. The prince of Conde first entered. Yet this successe will give great advantage to don John upon his comeinge to his new government. I remayne
My lord cheise baron Steele hath accepted to be chancelor of Ireland, and Mr. William Berry of Lincolnshire to come to you as one of the councell, and to have a care and the manadgment of the treasury. I beleeve them very sitt men, and such as your lordship may freely advise with. They will come about the middle of September.
Commissioners for Gloucestershire to the protector.
May it please your highness,
In obedience to your highness, and the councels order of the the first of July instant, whereby we are commanded to certify unto the councel the grounds of our proceedings against Edmond Bray of Barrington in the country of Gloucester esq; together with the value of his estate; we thereupon humbly certify, that we find amongst the records of the late committee for Gloucester, a warrant under the hands of the said Mr. Bray and others, a copy whereof we have here inclosed by. We doe not find he was ever questioned by them for the same; nor ever sequestrated by them thereupon. But upon information that he had corresponded for his estate as a delinquent at Godsmiths Hall, we thereupon convented him before us, and proceeded to the decimation of his estate according to your highnesse's and the councel's orders and instructions to us in that behalf; whereupon the said Edmond Bray submitted, and for the value of his estate we know nothing thereof further than what is mentioned in the particular thereof delivered by himself unto us (a copy whereof we have likewise inclosed) unto which we desire to refer ourselves. This being the state of the case as it lies before us, we humbly leave to your highness consideration, and remain
Gloucester, 15 July, 1656.