A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 6, January 1657 - March 1658. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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A Collection of State Papers of John Thurloe, Esquire, &c.
Lockhart embassador in France to secretary Thurloe.
I Found the Cardinall much alarumed upon ane account, that I make bould to give your honour a hint of in this lyn apart: he hath intelligence their are inclinations in England for a peace with Spayn: the way he sayeth he knows it is thus:
Don Lewis d'Hara hath writt to don Alonzo in Flanders, that one Riccardo Whits or Fits (ane Irishman) sayeth, he hath received letters from a brother of his in England, named Ignase or Ignatio, which mention that 570 being in some discourse with this Ignatio should say, he did not know what to make of the warr with Spayn; it was both expensive and dissatisfactory to the generality of the English natione. Ignase answered, it was so, and beleaved the Spanyard took so little pleasure in it also, as any reasonable overture for accomodatione would be very acceptable to them, and then offered to employ some frends he had in Spayn for that end. 570 bidd him come to him within a day or two, and he should have ane answer, which he did, and was advysed by 570 to make some propositione that way; and if it took effect, he should be well recompens'd. Don Lewis did desyer don Alonzo to enqwyer into that businesse, and if he fownd it trew, to entertain the motion with all possible care. Don Alonzo's answer was, that Ch. Stuart's desygn was in so good posture, as it was fitt to expect the successe of it: if it answered their hops, a revenge of the injuries received from his High: would be more honorable; if that failed, then it would be tyme enoff to listen after such a businesse.
This is the substance of what I was told on this subject, as near as I can remember. I was not wanting in my dewty to vindicat 570, and shall take further notice of it according to the comands shall be received by
Inclos'd in the preceding, Intelligence received from my correspondent in Flanders.
It is not above 5 or 6 weeks since Sexby came last from England. At his arryval in Flanders the Spanyards wer jealus of him, but it was taken of by Ch. Stuart, who assured them Sexby's propositions were highly rationall, and he promised himself great advantages from his negotiatione.
At a cownsell, where their was only Ch. Stuart, Don Juan, Don Alonzo, with one Spanyard more, Hyd and Bristoll; Sexby declared, he had power from a party in Eng land to promise their conjunction with such forrein forces, as shall land their, whether Ch. Stuart shall be with them in person, or shall send them under the command of any other general, that is an Englishman.
Sexby pretends to have intelligence with the dissatisfied members, that were not approved by his highnes counsell, as well as with the cavellers; and offered to procure an insurrectione presently, which by Cha'. Stuart's advise is delayed till his forrein preparations be in readynesse to second it, which cannot be before the beginning of March, by reason Spayn hath not yett raised the mony they have promised for carying on that desygn; and Don Jhon hath refused to give the 4000 men he had order for, aleadging the campagne draweth now near, and he cannot weaken his forces, till he receive a new comand for it, or at least till their levyes from Germanie arryve, which are to consist of 14000 men, a great part of which levys are now in readinesse to march.
Ch. Stuart's particular forces doth not exceed the number of forteen or 15 hundreth. He hath arms and amunition for 10 thousand more, which are expected to come to him upon his landing in England. Nothing can be learned of the place he intends to land at.
Sexbie doth for certain return into England about the 25/15 of this month, and so it's probable he will be their before this come to your hands. If he could be taken, a discovery of Ch. Stuart's whole desygn might be extorted from him. The cardinal ad vi se th a de cla ra ti on, be emitted, wherin it may be supposed, that some of the party hath revealed the plott; and that out of mercy to those ingadged in it, a pardon may be offered to all, who within a limitted tyme shall of their own accord come and accept the benefitt of it; as also to declare it treason in any body to releive or shelter Sexby, or to know of his being releived or sheltered without revealing it; to propose a good reward to whosoever shall reveal or discover Sexby. This is offered, as that hath been practised several tyms to good advantage by him and his p re de cessor but how far this may aggree with your way, I leave to your consideratione, with that submission as becometh a servant.
From prince William of Nassau.
High Noble Born Lords,
Your lordships will have yet without doubt in fresh remembrance, how that after the christian decease of the well born lord Van Brederode, the charge of field marshal became vacant, and the same being had into debate, the intention of most of the provinces did appear, that for the preventing of all disorder in the militia the said charge ought to have been presently supplied according to the antient custom, and to have had the same conferr'd upon us as the next in order thereunto, in regard of the charge of the generall of the artillery, which would have been done so, if so be there had not been proposed by the lords of Holland a certain project of harmony of the 3d of Decem. 1655. for the preventing of divisions.
But since the said project is not received by any of the provinces, yea not by the noble great lords states of Holland, and yet the necessity continuing of supplying the said place of field marshal, now vacant for these two years, was to that end on the 16th current very orderly proposed and concluded in the assembly of their H. & M. L. to review the instruction of the said charge, and afterwards to proceed to the disposall thereof.
Wherein although with great tediousness and prolixity is proceeded, the resumption being delayed by the space of a fortnight against the usuall custom, yet the lords of Holland have been pleased to in insert their opinions against the same; and in regard by the said contradiction of Holland, it doth seem that they do seek to frustrate, as well the good intention of the state concerning the necessary order in the militia, as us of the just hope of an honourable and lawful advancement, to which it is free for the least soldier to aspire and pretend unto. Wherefore we could not omit humbly to desire your lordships herewith, that they will be pleased to consider of the said business according to it's weight and equity, and that according to the renowned example of the province of Zealand, you may second that, which is firmly agreed by the other provinces, Gyelderland, Zealand, Friezland, and Groningnen, that so the band of union and order may remain violable, and the common wealth in its flower and peace. And besides that chief interest of the public, we will also take it for our particular, as a continuation of honour and favour, which we have oftentimes received from your lordships, and for a thankfull acknowledgment whereof, we will contribute all that we are able as long as we live, praying to God Almighty, &c.
A letter of intelligence.
The parliament had in debate again on wednesday last the business of monsieur de Chenaillis, and at last they made an arrest, that he was duly and truly imprisoned, and that the witnesses should be brought face to face, and that afterwards doing right upon the petition of his wife, he should have councill allowed him to defend himself the better.
Sr Wm. Lockhart hath been here for those four or five days, being returned out of England to reside here as ordinary ambassador of that commonwealth in this court. His lady and all his family will be also here very suddenly.
Consul Maynard to secretary Thurloe.
Blessed be God, who had mercy on us, and preserved us from the tempestuous seas, and brought us in safety to this place the 9th day after our departure from Falmouth, a mercy, that others did not participate of; for the shipes that came from Ingland in our company arrived here 13 days after us, and paste such miserable weather, that I have not heard of the like. I hope that God, whoe hath so largely manifested his mercy to us, will give us hearts to expresse our thankfulnesse by our humble and sincere walkinge before him all our dayes.
The second day after I landed, I was vissited by the conde de Mira, and after him by moste of the nobillitye of this courte, all congratulatinge his highnesse prosperity, and especially his late successe againste the Spaniard. I understood by the conde de Mira, and some others of the nobillity, that the queen did expecte his highnesse would by me have condoled the death of the late kinge, and congratulated the new; but I gave them to understand, that his highnesse had noe certain intelligence of the king's decease at my departure from Ingland. Five dayes after I had been ashoare, the queen gave me audience, whoe did expresse a greate deale of zeale to his highnesse my lord protector's affaires, and the tender care shee would have of the Inglish nation. And shee would strictly command her ministers to doe us justice, and punctually observe the peace lately made with his highnesse. Shee did farther expresse her thankfullnesse to his highnesse for the favours her agente received in Ingland, which shee lately sent into France, whose name is Domingo de Rosairo. As soone as I came ashoare, I did presently prosecute the businesse your honour commanded me, and I finde it will be effected accordinge to your honour's desire. An antient acquaintance of myne, whoe was boren in 158, but hath lived many yeares in this citty, told me in 14 dayes I should have certinge intelligence, what preparations are makinge in 282; which answere came laste night; this is the reason I have detained the Roebucke 8 dayes longer then otherwise I should have done. My intelligence doth assure me, the Spanyard hath not any considerable fleete: all the shipes she cann possibly sett forth, will be aboute twenty five, of which nyne or tenn are gallions, the reste are merchant shipes, and very inconsiderable to fight. They are in great want of cordage and masts, which they hope will be supplyed by the Hollanders. They give out, and make greate braggs, they will fight gen. Blake, and to that end many gentillmen have listed themselves in the service, but they are not in a condition to doe it, but doe certainly intend, if they are able, to escape by gen. Blake's fleete for the West Indies. There are two shipes arrived lately at Cadiz from the Caraxes in the West-Indies, one aboute the end of Novembr, and the other aboute the 15th of December. There was lately an insurrection in Madrid aboute some taxes laide on the people, in the appeasing of which a marques and many others were slaine. The Spaniard is risinge of an army to fall on this kingdome, and given out the kinge of Spaine intends to be at Badajoz in person aboute March next, a frontier towne of Spaine, some five leagues from Portugall, which makes these people put themselves in a posture of defence. The Holland admirall De Rutier is arrived at St. Lucar about three weeks since, with a squadron of shipes bound for the Straits to seeke out Tripolis and Algier pyrates, allthough 'tis reported by the common people in Spaine, that he is come to joyne with the Spanish fleete to fight the Inglish. This is what my intelligencer could gett in soe short a tyme. The queen of Portugall had an expresse from Spaine three dayes since. The conde de Mira was pleased to imparte to me what intelligence he brought, and hath promised me, I shall know what newes they have from tyme to tyme. This intelligence agrees with myn in the greateste parte, but thires sayes, the Spainard is not able to sett out above twenty saile of shipes, which they will sende to sea within a moneth, but have noe intent to fight gen. Blake, but passe by him, and fall on his highnesse's forces in Jamaica; and thire intelligence says, a bishop of Castile is risinge five thousand men on his own charges to joyne with the king's army to fall on Portugall, but both doe conclude, the Spaniard is not in a condition to fight his highnesse's fleete under the command of gen. Blake; and your honour will find it to be true, that nothinge but constrainte will make them fight, but they will avoyde the Inglish fleete as much as they are able. The conde de Mira told me, that he had it from good hands, that the Holland fleete under the command of De Rutier wold join with the Spaniard to fight his highnesse fleete, and seemed to be troubled at it; but I told him he need not fear it, the Dutch durst not attempt any such thinge, and that the late warr was yett too fresh in their memories to give any occasion to break with his highnesse. I perceive thire jelousey arises from De Rutier's being now arrived at St. Lucar with (some say) nyne saile; my intelligence sayes seaven men of warr. The queen of Portugall hath sent for her generalls from the frontiers, and bestowed some titles of honour and other preferrments on deservinge persons, and shee causes the army to be punctually paide, which was formerly neglected, in so much the common people are much better satisfied with her government, then they were with the king; however here are many well-wishers to the Spaniard. The queen ordered aboute a month since parte of her army to march into Spaine, consisting of aboute 2000 horse, and five thousand foot, whoe returned all after fower dayes tyme without doeing any thinge, by reason of the great raines that fell, which hindered thire march with their carriages, that they were lyke to have lefte their artillery behinde them without seeinge 10 of the enemy in a body. They seeme desirous to fight the Spaniard in his owne contry rather then give him battle in Portugall.
Aboute fourteen dayes since came into this harbour the Sucklinge, a private man of warr commanded by capt. Wells of Foy, whoe failes with his highnesse my lord protector's comission. The capt. of her reportes, that on the 25th Decembr last he met with nyne saile of shipes about thirty leagues west north west from the North Cape; fower of which he reportes to be gallions, fower flye boates, and one small frigott, which he supposses to be parte of the Nova Spania fleet. What induces me to believe so, is they were very fowle, and sailed directly to the Groyn; but beeinge the last intelligence from Spain gives no notice of their arrivall, gives greate cause to believe they were noe West India shipes. However 'tis the opinion of all here, that the Spanish fleete, which is expected, will not come for the bay of Cadiz, but for some part of Biskay or Galitia. From St. Lucar to the Algarivez come boates every week, by whome good intelligence may be had. I am now aboute to settle an able man in Pharo, and I hope in few weekes to have a person in 158 or 160, that shall give me certain intelligence of all that is needfull according to your honour's commands. I hope to expresse my gratitude to your honour by my diligent and faithfull service; and I truste in God your honour will have noe cause to say you have obliedged an unthankfull person, for never were greater obligations cast on a man then your honour hath on me, and I shall beg the continuance of your honour's favour noe longer then I shall use my utmost endeavours to deserve them. What intelligence I have I send gen. Blake by the shipes, which are here (viz.) the George, the Unicorn, the Phenix, and the 2 gallyes: the two great shipes put into Cascais road in a great storm, when they ridd three dayes at anchor, but were at last forced to come into the bay of Wyers, and leave each of them 2 cables and anchors behind them; they will all depart to gen. Blake's fleete with all expedition. Wee doe with abundance of trouble gett justice from these people, because the inferior ministers pretend ignorance of the articles of peace, beeing they are not yet published nor printed in Portuguez. I have written Mr. Noell and Mr. Clerke what I have done in thire businesse about the packet boates, being fearfull I have been too prolix with your honour.
Here follows the secretary of states's letter concerning the publication of the peace translated into English, of which I sent your honour a copy both in Portuguez and English by Roebuck packet boate.
Presently when his majesty (whom God preserve) had taken possession of the government of these kingdoms, he commanded Francisco Fareira Rebello, his publick minister in London, to signify to the lord protector, that he was ready to keep and confirm (if it were necessary) the peace, which his majesty deceased did celebrate with his most serene highness and the comon-wealth of England; but by reason of the change of government, which this kingdom suffered, there may be some doubt made whether the peace were published in London the third of this present month, as it was agreed, his majesty hath suspended the publication of that peace in this court untill there comes advice from London, whither it was published according to the first articles or the new confirmation of the king, that we might follow the same that the lord protector hath done, which his majestie commands me to signify to you, that you may understand this is the cause of suspending the publication; but in the peace, or the observing and execution of it, there is not the least doubt. God keep you many years from the pallace, the first of February, 1657.
I answered the secretary that, as I had no order from his highness to meddle with the publication of the peace, so I could give him noe other answer, but that I would signify to your honour what his lordship now writt me. A copy of my letter verbatim went by the Roebuck, and I am little straitned in time, and begg your honour's pardon for my hasty writing.
Earl of Calander to secretary Thurloe.
The great civilities and favoures I have alreadie recieved, incourage me to acquaint your honor with the success of my busines since my arrival heere, knowing that there is none more zealous then yourselfe in the accomplishing and putting in execution his highnes actes and orders, wherby they receive the indeleable stamps of the Meds and Persianes, which I shall regrate, if they schall happen to be broken or made of no effect, more then anie thing can befall my private fortune, they being the certaine rules and lawes of the present governement and our injoyments, and in conservation of which his highnes safetie and our obedience are equallie wrapp't up, where I intend to pay tribute as most safe and becomeing,
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburg, to secretary Thurloe.
The pacquet, which was wantinge the last weeke, came on this day with another in course. It seemes to me to have beene opened, but soe closed againe, as that I cannot affirme it. I neither find in that nor this week's pacquet any from your honour, nor have I at present any thinge to ad to the inclosed letters and papers of intelligence, save that heere Mr. Townley's faction are soe high and confident, as that some of the leadinge men give it out, that though his highness should absolutly command what the company at London have lately advised and required them to doe, yet they would not doe it; of which requisition and their deportment thereupon, I gave you an accompt per last and former week's post. I remayne
The last letters from the imperial court speak also of the new consederacy between his majesty of Sweden and the Transilvanian duke, and that there is a generall report there of the said duke's entrance of Poland with a very puissant army; and that having chased the Poles from before Cracow, and relieved that place, he hath already advanced himself a good way into the said kingdom, where it is sayd he attends his majesty's of Sweden's conjunction very shortly; which news however is not beleeved by the Imperialists, but very strongly (tho' with little reason) contradicted and opposed. The Danes make a great deal of noise in the world of a design they are said to have against the Swedes. Some are of opinion, their plot is intended against the stist of Breme, but others, who consider a little more unpassionately the difficulty (which in regard of the strong places and the Swedish extraordinary watchfulness in the said stist, they will certainly encounter in the effecting thereof) think rather, that if they have any thoughts of making use of this supposed opportunity for their revenge against the Swedes, they will content themselves to recover (if they can) these provinces, which the Swedes possess in their very dominions of Denmark, without going further. A little time will disclose their intentions to us, and make us more able to judge of them. Out of Poland and Prussia this post affords but little. His majesty of Sweden after the taking of Coniez upon discretion, hath quitted the blockade of Tanckell, leaving some regiments before it, and advanced further into Poland; but what course he hath taken, is not certainly known. 150 waggens laden with hops, and intending for Dantzick, were met with by the Swedes, 109 where brought up to Marienburgh. The 4000 men, which the Dantzickers upon the desire of Czarnetzky sent out to follow the Swedes, understanding of his majesty's departure from before Tanckell returned re infectâ towards Dantzick, where upon the way it's said they were overtaken by a Swedish party sent out for that purpose, and followed to the very gates of Dantzick, some few of them being slain and took prisoners; but the Dantzickers deny any loss at all they suffered, vaunting mightily of their good success in having burnt a certain Swedish garrison, and brought several prisoners and much spoil back with them. It is also said k. Casimir understanding from the queen the great loss of the chief part of her forces by col. Aschenbergh, and being advised by her to leave Dantzick, and come to her with those forces, which remain there, hath twice endeavoured an escape out of the said city; but being both times discovered, the Dantzickers are now said to be resolved not to dismiss him, until he hath made peace with the Swedes, whereunto some have great hopes, there being a treaty appointed at Marienburgh, which is to begin shortly. The Dantzick letters this day arrived bring news of the total defeat of two considerable Swedish parties sent out by his majesty upon recognition by Czarnetzky near Bramberg; and that 17 of their colours are taken; but they shew so litle ground for the truth of this report, as that the unpassionate party of this city (which indeed is but very small) do not only give no credit to it, but are able also with sufficient reasons to resute the same, as a notorious untruth invented and given out by themselves according to their custom.
A letter of intelligence.
They write from Koningsberg of the 26th instant, that the Sameiters, Tartars, and Poles do commit very great cruelties in the countries of Overlandt, Ranguit, and Tilse, killing men, women, and children without any difference; and turning all to ashes round about. The Polish army under Charnitzky was met some 14 miles from the said places. It is not yet certain, whether the said general be join'd with Gonziensky.
They are here very much troubled, in regard of the great likelihood of war with the king of Denmark; and some say, that there be already 26000 men raised in that kingdom; and those places in Sweden, which are most threatned, do provide themselves against the worst, in case they should be assaulted by the forces of Denmark.
An intercepted Letter to the Lord Viscount Conway.
This very instant, and almost too late for the post, just as I was sending away the inclosed letter, I had the honour to receive your lordship's, which obligeth me with humble thanks to acknowledge the receipt, and to congratulate your happy return home to Kensington, from whence I shall have the ambition to hear from your lordship, and to receive the promised favour of giving me what news you have, which I will endeavour all I can to deserve, and to return the like, or at least as much as shall be acted on the place, which I can warrant for truth. As for the town at present, it affords none within the compass of my knowledge worthy your notice; but I do assure your lordship to make you double satisfaction, when I come where I am to settle, which I had prepared myself for the last week, but am by letter hindred for a fortnight, if not 3 weeks longer. I am troubled for Sr Robert's death, and for the lord's imprisonment, which I hope is rather occasioned by some light debauchery, than malicious acting any thing against the government. I have, I confess, so great an esteem for him, that I shall be in pain, and long to know. The grand ballet du roy is acted here twice a week, and will be so till lent; and now the fair of St Germains begins, at both which I heartily wish your lordship. As yet it is discoursed indifferently of what the late and shortly present embassador's business is. Some say he demands money due upon the articles; and others that a peace offensive and defensive is required, and money settled for the payment of certain ships; as also for to levy forces for the ensuing spring.
General Monck to secretary Thurloe.
I recd yours dated the 15th instant with the inclosed examination concerning that wicked plott of Sundercombe and some others. Itt was a great providence of God, that hee was pleased to discover soe wicked a designe. God give us hearts to bee truly thankfull unto him for the same. I have nothing at present to trouble you withall, all thinges heere being quiet. Soe I remayne
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major general of the army in Ireland.
I had the honour to receive two from you by this post, whereto I am not able by this to give any answer, in respect they arrived but the last night; and I have not had tyme since to open them, and therfore must begge your lordship's pardon untill the next post as to what may be in those letters. I am very glad to heare, that the ship bound for Jamaica is soe neare ready to set sayle. His highnes will be glad to heare, that shee were gone.
I sent unto your lordship by the last post a coppy of some examinations concerninge a designe to murder his highnes; the particulers of this designe have beene since communicated to the parlament, who have thereuppon appointed Friday three weekes for a day of thansgiveinge, through the three nations for this signall deliverance both to his highnes and the whole comonwealth; and have alsoe desired his highnes to appoint them a day, when the parlament may attend his highnes by their speaker, to congratulate this great goodnes to his highnes, and to expresse their sensiblenes thereof. And his highnes hath appointed Friday for both houses to attend hym for that purpose. They have in this action shewed much affection to his highnes.
The bill of decimation yet stickes. It had a longe debate this day. The debate is adjourned till to morrow; and what the issue will be, I knowe not. That which is pretended for the reason of the opposition to this bill is, the feare, that it will establish the major generals, which they seeme to disrellish very much.
The letter his highnes writt was not on the behalfe of Naylor; and those, who soe represent it, doe it not ingenuously. Its true it was upon that occasion, but it was soe farre from beinge in favour of hym, that his highnes in his very letter professed he detested both his oppinions and practises, but yet was unsatisfied with their proceedinges, as haveinge beene wholly without hym; and what the consequence of such proceedinges might be to all the people of these nations, on whose behalfe he was entrusted, he knew not; and therefore desired, that he might be acquainted with the grounds of their proceedinges. I am glad the parlament did expresse soe much affection to your lordship in that of Portumna. I assure your lordship it was done soe freely, that noe body in Whitehall knewe of it before it was done: for my part I did not.
I was wholly ignorant of the order of the counsell here, which your lordship mentions concerninge the stoppinge of proceedinges at lawe in case of pattents granted by the late kinge, till I had notice of it by your lordship's letter, and since I have not had tyme to informe myselfe fully thereof, which I hope to doe by the next, and to give your lordship an account thereof.
The kinge of Sweden is now in a very good condition, haveinge had very good successe
lately against 4000 horse of the Poles, which he routed, and destroyed most of them. Sir
William Lockart is arrived in France. Our enemye in Flanders is in necessities as well
as wee: he hath a great minde to be stirringe, but God crosseth hym in most of his designes
by some meanes or other. Wee have nothinge from the fleet. I rest
Your lordship's most humble,
and most faithful servant,
A letter of intelligence from Mr. Manley.
I receaved yours of the 2d Jan. and am glad to heare of yours and our frends welfare, but principally that my endeavours are pleasing to our frends, which might prove yet more, if I had more abilitie. Here is but little newes at present; the armyes being so far from us, that we can get but little certaintie from them, and both retired to their winter quarters; only Charnisky keeps the field with a flying army of 3 or 4000 horse, wherwith he doth much incommodate the Swedes. The Dantsickers have retaken Grebin, and put the garrison all to the sword, consisting of 50 Finns, most of them charmed, or hard, so that no sword could perce them. This hath bin told mee with oths by sober men, and that they were forced to knock them in the heads with clubs and polaxes. The house is burnt. The Hollands ambassadeurs at Elbing did not goe to Holland to the conference of the king of Sweden and elector, by reason that the king let them know he would stay there but one night. As soone as they have spoke with his majestie once more, they will returne to Dantzick, for he refused them an answer, till he had first spoke with the duke. Both kings make a deale of difficultie in what they ought reasonably to desire most, peace; but it is with them as with modest mayds, who love to be seemingly constrayned to a surrender. The Swedes can never conquer Poland, beeing they cannot engage the enemie, whose maxime it is to hazard no more. And the Poles can make no peace, unlesse the Swede quit Prussia; which he may happily doe for other considerations, being he cannot get Dantzick, and the Hollanders will not let it be lost. He is at present upon a strange designe, and worth his greatnes of mind, that is, to turne away the river from this towne, and make it run by Marienburg, where a branch of it doth goe, and the rest that that channel cannot bear, by there fort the Hoff, where it likewise branches towards the Hoff. Gustavus Adolphus attempted it likewise 27 yeares agoe, when he was in these countreys; but the feare of inundating the island of Marienburg, and the uncertaintie of the issue, deterred him as then. Some great posts are struck through the ice, in order to it alreadie; but it is thought, that the ice will breake any obstacle, such is the violence of the current: however the Dantzickers feare it. When you write, send some newes to change, and direct your letters to Jacob Kledt marchant for mee. Farewell and love
The Dutch embassadors in Denmark to Ruysch.
By our last of the 28th instant their H. and M. L. will have seen, that his majesty and the lords of this kingdom are wholly inclined to interest themselves in the affairs of the east sea, and to make some further propositions about them with their H. & M. L. and that his majesty will help the same to be determined in the best manner (with God's assistance) upon the grounds in our instruction. And upon the following resolution of their H. & M. L. about the evacuation of Prussia, he is resolved to use as much vigour as can be required, and much more than did seem on our side to be required, when we first begin to treat in this court. The lords, who speak with us daily about it with great earnestness, do add, that in the redressing of the affairs of Prussia (that in their judgments it is a high and necessary point, and without which no treaty can take effect) his majesty will take care to help their H. & M. L. to all manner of advantagious conditions about the navigation and commerce; and withal will help secure the peace in the best manner under a firm act of guaranty.
Now in regard they make no doubt, but the business in all likelihood will succeed to the content of both parties, if so be there happeneth no prejudice to the means and ways for the effecting of the same; wherefore they ask on this side, as their H. & M. L. will have seen, a speedy resolution from their H. & M. L. and they do begin to insist in the first place, that all further negotiations upon the treaty of Elbing may be deferred, that so their H. & M. L. that continuing, may not have their hands bound; and that, as we writ formerly, this business, which requireth speed, may not be spoil'd through delays; or that their H. & M. L. (under wiser judgments) upon the elucidation of the treaty at Elbing, causing the same to be negotiated apart, no occasion be given to Sweden, to dispose this crown to a separate treaty, and to cause that of their H. & M. L. to remain unfinished.
His majesty hath caused several times to be signified unto us, that in his opinion it is not good for him to do with separate counsels; but that if so be their H. & M. L. the business standing in such terms as we have writ over, were pleased to negotiate further, that the treaty may be finished apart with Sweden, his majesty perceiving, that upon the great conditions, which the Swedish resident here faith he hath to present, must also treat apart, and, it may be, find many ways (though against his majesty's mind and desire) to sinish his first. Wherefore we humbly desire of their H. & M. L. that we may have the liberty to say, that we perceive, that many, who look upon this business with an understanding eye; do judge (under correction) that Sweden will have the advantage in this business, if so be their H. & M. L. do intend to make a separate treaty. And we must confess, in our poor judgments, as far as doth appear to us (under correction of their H. & M. L.) that we do perceive the more likelihood for the same, in regard that to advance the treaty here with Sweden, the ambassador of Brandenburgh doth use for a powerful argument to perswade Denmark to that, if so be this crown will not treat with Sweden; and that their H. & M. L. do proceed with the Elbing treaty, there will be granted to their H. & M. L. all that they can desire of Sweden.
In regard we desired to know of his majesty, whether we should follow him to Gedense, where the assembly of the states of the kingdom is to be, his majesty thereupon signified to us expresly, that it would be very acceptable unto him, and we do intend, or some of us, with the good liking of their H. & M. L. to take a journey thither.
One of the lords of the council, that came lately from Schoonen, faith, that the zeal of the great and small nobility and commonalty is no less in that province, than in this, vigorously to advance the intended levies and sea preparations; and the same is advised from other parts of his majesty's dominions. Also there hath been offered to his majesty ten thousand men, to be maintained upon a private account, besides what the lords Rycksshoff master, and others of the chief lords of the council do intend to do, who, it is thought, will also do something considerable.
Ambassador Dorp to the States General.
H. and M. Lords,
My Lords, the Swedes proceed in their design to divert the Wessel stream at the Hoosst, and to turn the same towards the Haff; to which end five vessels fill'd with sand and other heavy things are sunk there, and afterwards were beset with piles, that so the force of the water should not drive them away.
They hold here very much of general Charnetzki, who is lookt upon as a person able to do good service to his king and country. It is said, that he knoweth how to keep the army in good discipline, and they stand very much in awe of him.
Grebbin is burnt down to the ground, and the Swedish garrison found therein totally destroyed, in regard they desired no quarter: amongst them were six Fins and a German, who were hardened in such manner, so as a Netherland cornet being in the Poles service told me, and that he had seen a trial of it, and had made trial himself of it, that the said people being stark naked, yet they could not pierce them with their swords, but did bear off all manner of the thrusts and cuts, as if they had struck upon iron; at last they destroyed them by knocking them on the head with sharp hammers.
Ambassador Dorp to Ruysch.
They say here, that a treaty is concluded at Weenen with the Polish ambassadors, and approved of by the king and commonwealth of Poland; and that the lord Isola, the emperor's resident in the court of Sweden, who arrived here lately, doth press for the ratification of the same. By that treaty the emperor engageth himself to assist the Poles in this their war, and the arch-duke Leopold in lieu thereof is to be designed king of Poland after the decease of this present king. The said resident Isola hath been to visit me; he said his imperial majesty was inclined to observe all good amity with their H. and M. L. that there were some small obstacles, which his imperial majesty would be glad to see removed, which he was charged to communicate unto us.
I perceive, that on this side there is secretly treated with the duke of Brandenburgh; and that they are well inclined to give reasonable content to the said duke; but it is supposed, the duke makes his requests too high. The presentation of their H. and M. L. guaranty did perswade much in this; and they would be glad to see, that the king of Denmark did as much.
A letter of intelligence.
Mr. Alex. Kemp,
As for news, there is no likelihood of peace as yet. Our people sell out on friday last, which was the 26th instant, and took Grabien from the Swedes by storm, and kill'd all that was in the Hoff, and burnt it to the ground; and since our people have been out, and have taken a good booty from the Swedes. They took a rit-master, corporal, and other soldiers. This ritmaster was taken by rit-master Gordon's company. It marvels rit-master Gordon, that you write not to him. Every time he sees me, since you went from hence, he asks me if you have not writ to him.
A letter of the count de Holac.
Monseigneur, mon tres honore patron,
Ce n'estoit pas negligence, ou faute de tres humble affection, que je n'ay pas rendu plustost mes tres humbles devoirs a V. E. par des lettres; mais c'estoit le continuel voyage, que je faisois jusques icy. J'espere neantmoins, que V. E. aura receu cellecy, que envoyois d' Hollande, par laquelle je supplois tresh. V. E. a me conserver l'honneur & l' advantage de ses bonnes graces, comme je fais aussy par la presente. Je communiquois aussy par icelle aV. E. toutes les particularites, que je pouvois apprendre en Hollande, pour a cette heure je n'ay rien a dire a V. E. de nouveau qui soit de consequence, sinon que plusieurs princes protestants m'ont tesmoigne une grandissime inclination pour S. A. serenissime my lord protector, ainsi qu'un conseilleur du prince de Hessen Darmstat (qui est neantmoins Lutherien) m'en parloit en ces termes, nous vous croyons, et remarquons bien, que my lord protector a des intentions sinceres pour le bien commun des protestants; pas moins des bons sentiments scay je d'autre bonne part que le prince de Hessen Cassel a pour S. A. Serimc. On m' asseura le mesme du due de Wittemberg; lequel prince j'iray voir la septmaine qui vient, s'il plaist a dieu; et apres je pourrois peut etre donner plus de particularites a V. E. puis que c'est en un lieu, ou plusieurs princes protestants s'iront rencontrer. Les papistes sont si effrontes, de dire publiquement, que ces assemblees ne leurs aggreent pas, quasi si eux estoient nos taiteurs, quoy qu'eux s'assemblent quasi tous les 8 jours, et ont des consultations directement contre nous; c'est ce qui esveille fort nos princes en Allemagne; et je crois si jamais une ambassade de S. A. Serme. my lord prot. auroit peu effectuer quelque chose pour une alliance offensive et defensive de tous les bons protestants, ce seroit a cette heure, puis que les papistes se renforcent par tout par leurs alliances et nouvelles levees; aussy s' est en resolu a secourir la France, en cas que l'empereur ne cesse d'exercer des hostilites envers elle. C'est ce qu'il fait a present en envoyant des trouppes en Alsace, et en promettant d' envoyer la campagne prochaine derechef des trouppes en Italie et en Flanders. Pour mon particulier je supplie tres humblement V. E. d' asseurer de ma part S. A. Serme. que je metiens tellement obligé a S. A. pour la grande & geneureuse charité, qu'elle a voulue exercer envers moy, que je suis de touts mes efforts addonné aux interests de S. A. que je ne manqueray pas en toutes les occasions que j' auray en ce pais icy de prescher sa louange, et de jetter de fondements d' une correspondance firme entre S. A. et les princes protestants de ces pais icy. Au reste je supplie aussy tres humblement V. E. de me conserver l' honneur de ses bonnes graces, dont je fais gloire de les avoir acquis une fois, et tascheray tous jours de meriter la desirable continuation d' icelle par l'immutabilité de ma tres obeissante affection pour V. E. et ce que je ne pourrois faire par mes services faute ou d' occasion, ou de capacité, je le faira par des prieres envers dieu pour la prosperité de V. E. et de toute sa tres noble famille, esperant de voir mesme les effects de ces prieres l' esté prochain chez. V.E. Cependant je me promest, que la grande bonté, que V. E. a pour ceux qui ont beaucoup soussert pour la religion, et taschent de s' employer encores pour le bien commun, donnera lieu a mes supplications, que j'ay faict dernierement a V. E. de me faire cette grande faveur, de cooperer aupres de S. A. Serme. que selon les gracieuses promesses je puisse jouir de cette honneur glorieuse, d'estre commendé de S. A. un des plus grands princes de l'Europe, et un des meilleurs capitains du monde. En attendant sur cela de V. E. une consolable response j' asseure V. E. qu'elle ne pourra jamais s' acquirir un serviteur, qui est plus passionnement,
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major general of the army in Ireland.
I had thought to have writt to your lordship at large by this post, but am at the present soe troubled with a cold, that I can scarce hold up my head to aske your lordship's pardon and excuse for my brevitie and abrupt signinge myselfe
Extract out of the register of the resolutions of the high and mighty lords the states general of the United Netherlands.
The provinces being summoned, whether they were ready to declare upon the disposal of the charge of field-marshal, after deliberation had, it is resolved herewith to desire those provinces, that are yet unprepared, that they will forthwith fit themselves. The lords commissioners of the province of Holland and West-Friezland desired the provinces, that they will first declare themselves upon their advice concerning the said subject delivered to the assembly.
The Dutch ambassadors at Marienburgh to Ruysch.
We are informed by a very good hand, that at Holland good resolutions were taken for the advancing of the treaty of peace; that his majesty of Sweden seemed to yield to what is reasonable. And we are thereby made to hope, that all the remaining preliminary difficulties will be overcome; and we have received good and sure advice, that there happened many considerations about the naming and finding out of a place, which might be fit for to treat in, and which might be agreeable to all parties. And in regard they would be unwilling to meet in any place belonging to either of the warring potentates, or where their plenipotentiaries should not be fully secured, that therefore on the side of Sweden and the duke of Brandenburgh was proposed the city of Brunsberch, situated in the bishoprick of Ermelant, and equally commodious to both parties; but in regard it was foreseen, that his majesty of Poland would take offence at that place, in regard the said city was taken by that duke before this war, and is kept by his garrison at present; wherefore the duke, to remove that difficulty, and to cause all parties to have content given them, is willing to remove his garrison out of the said city, and to put 400 of their H. & M. L. soldiers quartered at Dantzick at present into it; and that they should be sworn to keep the said city for the safety and security of both sides plenipotentiaries; but to deliver up again the same to the said duke, if so be the treaties should not take effect, or in case of success, to be disposed of as shall be agreed upon.
And although this was not expresly and formally communicated unto us, in the behalf of the king of Sweden and the duke of Brandenburgh, yet we thought not fit to conceal such a business of such importance, but make the same presently known to their H. & M. L. to the end they may be pleased to send us such necessary orders and authorities, that so through want thereof the treaties may not be delayed, but the time duly managed, which is the more precious, in regard the spring approacheth, which will assord opportunities to both parties to make some advantage or other against each other.
The Dutch ambassadors at Marienburgh to Ruysch.
Yesterday, the next day after our arrival in this city, we had audience by his majesty of Sweden, and desired to understand his further intention and resolution for the advancing and furthering of peace in these parts, that so such a necessary and christian a work may not be delayed any longer, or held in suspence, and which might be made more difficult through all manner of accidents which may happen. His majesty was pleased to make answer, that he, together with the duke of Brandenburgh, had taken a joint resolution upon that business, and staid only for the coming of the lord Bent Oxensterne, to draw up the same in it's due form, with the lords ambassadors of the duke of Brandenburgh; and that then communication should be given to us, as well as to the lords ambassadors of France. His majesty falling into further discourse with us upon this subject, that it would be wisely and prudently done by his majesty and kingdom of Poland, well to manage the time and opportunity for the making of a peace, before that more parties and nations engaged themselves in this war; and so by their several and different interests would render it the more difficult to determine, &c.
That now of a certain the duke of Sevenbergen was broken loose with an army of 40000 men against Poland; and that the effect thereof would soon convince the incredulity of some; and that he could shew to the Poles themselves the hand and seal of the said duke; and he related to us several passages out of the said duke's letter, wherein he expresseth much sincerity to his majesty.
In regard we understood out of the letter of the lord ambassador of Maesdam, that the design of the king of Sweden (to divert the Weyssel stream as we writ at large) begun to cause some after thoughts in those of the government of Dantzick, we thought fit, by occasion of audience with all reasons and motives which we could think on, to desire his majesty most earnestly once more about it, that he would not suffer the said design to proceed any further. After that his majesty had heard all our reasons with great attention, he said, that he wondered, that those of Dantzick now first begun to apprehend his intentions about the said design; and asked us, that if so be he should stand still on his side, what those of Dantzick then would do on their side ? and whether they would cause all their acts of hostility to cease ? And thereupon being we must answer, that we could not tell, so said his majesty, I leave all the world to judge, whether it be reasonable, that I should stand still, as if my hands were tied behind me, and suffer those of Dantzick to practise all manner of violence and contempt against me, and continue in the same from time to time. And he told us further, that near the Hoosst were sunk already ten boats full of heavy things, and was resolved to prosecute that design with all diligence; and he signified to us, that he would effect the same, not doubting of the success, as many others, who have knowledge and experience of the same, and whom we have heard discourse thereof, are of the same opinion. We shall not dare to pass and give our weak judgments upon this design, but thought it our duty to acquaint their H. & M. L. with it, as soon as it came to our knowledge.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Les estats de Hollande se sont separés: ils auront entre eux resolú d'elire un capitaine general sur la milice de leur repartition (en cas quelque provinces voudront avancera l' election d' un mareschal de camp contre leur gre) a quel effect desia un concept instruction sera preste; et l'on croit que ce sera le sieur de Beverweert. Le prince Guliaumes'est maintenant decouvret, stant venu incognito. Ou verra s'il se lairra induire a un accomodement sur le pied de la harmonie; ou bien s'il lairra venir l' affaire a quelque accommodement.
Ou a trouvé bon que demain le prince Guliaume et le conseil d'estat viendront en l' assemblée avec la petition anniversaire. Notification de la naissance du jeune prince n' est pas saite aux estats generaux; et pourtant aussy les estats generaux ne font point de congratulation audit prince; quoy que le conseil d' estat la luy aye fait comme a leur collegue.
La Hollande a bien resolu de faire un captaine general; mais ils retiendront le nom in pectore; ains simplement seront une commission, le nom in blanco; retenant cependant comme souverains le pouvoir de leur milice en leurs mains; et quoy que ceux de Zeelande ayent si vigoreusement avisé sur le fait du mareschal, neantmoins l' on tient qu' ils n' en proposeront rien cette semaine: ains attendront si leur principaux voudront respondre quelque chose a la lettre de Hollande.
Aujourd'huy le conseil d' estat avec le prince Guliaume ont esté presenter dans les estats generaux la petition. Sur la proposition faite par lesieur Veth president est resolu, que le fils du sieur de Renswoude resident a la cour de Spaigne, et tels consuls qui n'ont pas fait serment, le seront par procureur.
Messieurs de Hollande a ce matin ont derechef proposé et rememoré la ligue garantie ou defensive avec la France et l' Angleterre selon le concept cy devant communiqué; ce qui est encore pour amadouer et appaiser la colere de la France, et prevenir celle d' Angleterre: item ils ont proposé de preparer derechef la flotte, qui a esté envoyee vers la mer Baltique, pour s'en pouvoir servir en un besoin, et specialement pour en envoyer une partié vers la mer mediterranée.
Aujourd'huy la Zeelande proposa la revocation des troupes qui sont a Dansigk: avec quoy se conformerent les provinces de Frise, de Overyssel, et Groningue: ce non obstant le president Veth ne voulut pas conclurre.
La petition de 600 mille francs pour une suppletion a supporter les fraiz d' une flotte (en cas et puisque le last et veylgelt ne suffit pas, aussy en cas que les merchandises ne peussent pas supporter ce fardeau de last et veylgelt,) est arrestée et envoyée aux provinces.
Il va encore aucunement tumultueux touchant la charge de mareschall de camp: par la resolution du 23 Jan. aurez veu la serveur de les estats d'Hollande, et comment ils se cabrent en cela. Certes je loue et approuve leur zele pour la liberté; mais qu'il ne leur aille selon le proverbe, Dum vitant vitia in contraria currunt. Car l'on voit des signes si manifestes dans les principaux loyales d'Hollande, qu' ils vont pour retourner soubs le prince d' Orange, qu' a peine en puis je douter. Je scay que n'a guere le sir Beverning a dit en compagnie, je vous bois a la santé de prince d' Orange: l'autre luy dit, prenez garde: vous offensez le protecteur. sur quoy Beverning dit. F du Cromwel; si le prince d'Orange estoit en age, je desireroy estre un de ses premiers ministres. Et je scay aussy de bonne part, que des principaux loyales d'Hollande sur cette derniere assemblée (quand ils' agissoit de contrecarrer le grave Guillaume office en la de mareschal de camp) ont a divers membres serieusement persuadé, qu'il faille nommer le prince d'Orange pour capitaine general et quand on leur dit, que ce seroit contre la alliance avec Cromwel, ils repliquerent, que les estats generaux, par pluralité de voix (quasi) nous forcent et vainquent en cela: tant y a que les plus confidents et les plus fideles creatures de prince d'Orange travaillent de toutes leur forces contre grave Guillaume, et se joignent intrinsiquement avec les loyales d'Hollande. Comme aussy les loyales d'Hollande se joignent intrinsiquement avec ceux de prince d'Orange Cecy semblera un peu paradoxe a vous; et neantmoins c'est une pure et nette verité: et vous le verra effectivement. Je puis encore aussy asseurer, que serieusement les estats d'Hollande songent a l'alliance avec Espagne. et Denmark ne va pas ains court a l'alliance avec les estats generaux, et Poland ne desire autre chose que cela. Le bon que je voy en grave Guillaume est, qu'il est amis de Brandenburg et de France. et que Cromwel jamais ne s'est declaré contre grave Guillaume comme contre le prince d'Orange; et l'on voit que la jelousie et division en viendra entre le prince d'Orange, et grave Guillaume, vous jugera, comment s' interesse en cela le protecteur.
Je recoy votre du 26. Jan. l' achapt ou louage des navires fait a Amsterdam par le ambassadeur de Espagne n'esclatte encor nullement; aussy l'onm' asseure, que c'est plus tost pour procurer l'envoy de navires vers le temps qu' arrivera la flotte d'argent pour le transporter de la icy mais vous peut bien s'asseurer, que serieusement les estats d'Hollande a present enclinent asses vers Espagne. et si les estats d'Hollande ne craignoient la lange du peuple et des ministres, ils feroient quelque chose pour Espagne, quoy qu' exterieurement les estats d'Hollande demonstrent mine devouloir la ligue guarantie avec Cromwel, et France, comme scavez. C'est une chose estrainge, comment le monde change R. e n s w o u d e cy devant si grand ennemy tant de Espagne, les que de estats de Holland est maintenant le meilleur amis de l'un et de l'autre. les estats d'Holland l' ont gaigné par deux notables benefices. Dont le principal est, qu' ils ont fait son fils resident en Espagne, et le feront republicain. Depuis peu memes il a magnifiquement traicté le ambassadeur de Espagne. Bref il est tout a fait a Espagne et a les estats d'Hollande: estant bien croyable, que par ce fils se brasse un et autre avec Espagne. mais le mal est que Espagne est necessiteux. Du cas arrivé a Rotterdam je n'ay rien ouy, mais je m'en informeray: je reste,
Extract out of the register of the lords states general of the United Provinces.
Upon the proposition made to the assembly by the lord president, to the end a day might be named to recal the militia of this state left at Dantzick; after foregoing deliberation had, it is resolved to desire herewith, that those provinces, that are yet unprepared, that they will make themselves ready to declare upon the same as soon as may be.