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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March (2 of 5)
Courtin to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
It is said here, that the states of Holland have resolved to set forth 60 men of war, to free their merchant-men from being visited at sea by the French and English. They seem to show more anger against France, and, in the mean time they have no less against England; but they conceal their designs, till they be able to maintain them by force. The affairs of the Baltick-sea are very much taken to heart by them. They seem to be resolved to assist Dantzick, and not to suffer it to fall into the hands of the Swedes, as long as they can hinder it. The resident of Sweden hath delivered a memorandum to the lords states, to demand of them the ratification of the treaty of Elbing, and to recal their troops at Dantzick. They have not yet given him an answer to it; and it is probable they will hardly give him satisfaction upon it. Here is a report, that the states of Groningen are fallen out with prince William of Nassau.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Je n'y a eu rien de notable, si non qu'on a debattu sur l'envoy d'argent au sicur de Reede a Madrid; ou jusques à quelle somme environ par an: on à parle de six mille Francs; au moins par provision. Le Zeelande s'est opposée, non seulment contre la dite somme; mais contre tout son employ.
L'affaire de Omlandes a esté sur le tapis; mais sans conclusion: l'on a avis, que le sieur Clanch, pour sauver sa charge (de deputé aux estats generaux) quittera aussy le party des Doleanciers; et que le prince Guilliaume aussy se tient aussy du costé le plus fort. Bref; pour envoyer des deputes, point de resolution, & peu d'apparence.
Aujour d'huy le president a proposé l'advis du conseil d'etat touchant le commendement des troupes a Dantzik; le sieur Haersolte en estant retrenché; on a laissé sur l'avis le sieur lieut. colonel Ehrentrieter, & le sieur de Sterrenborgh. L'advis estant leu; le president dit, que le sieur Ehrentrieter se trouvoit occupé avec d'autres affaires; si qu'il requeroit l'assembleé de vouloir nommer le sieur de Sterrenborgh, comme plus propre. Sur cela la Hollande dit ouy: la Utrecht de meme; mais les autres provinces declararent, que des le commencement elles avoient contredit au logement de ces troupes dans Dantzik, comme chose contraire a la neutralité et amitié, qu'on vouloit professer entre les couronnes; que maintenant le traitté d'Elbing estant conclu et signé, il est moins a propos de laisser ces troupes a Dantzik, & qu'au contraire ces 4 provinces veulent les appeller. Ainsy toute l'affaire est tenüe en surseance; mais le sieur Malart s'en va; et ainsy il y a apparence qu' Overyssel se rangera du costé de la Hollande.
Aujourd'huy sont leües lettres du prince Guilliaume, comme aussy ont eu audience les sieurs Alberda, Conders, et le sieur Nykerke sur lettres de creance du party Doleanciers des Omlandes, contenant que la ville de Groningue est aussy en division; et qu'elle n'pas voulou soy joindre a party le plus fort: ains est differé tout jusques a 15 jours; pourfaire venir de deputes d'icy vers la: et cependant il n'y a nul regime n'y justice provinciale; tout reposant jusques a ce temps sur cela est resolu, que vers la iront les mesmes deputes, qui y furent l'an 1655, pour tacher a y remetter bon ordre. Et cependant sera fait un instruction.
La Hollande, ou le Raet pensionaire a derechef fort harangué de la necessité de parachever l'alliance defensive où ligue guarentie avec la France et l'Angleterre, admonestant les provinces non prestes, a se rendre prestes.
Le sieur Huygens a fait rapport touchant les retorsions au pais d'Outre-meusé et se trouve encore grande inclination pour extendre les retorsions aussy contre ceux le Limborch. L'on a arresté l'instruction pour ceux, qui iront a Groningue.
Ace matin on a achevé d'arrester l'instruction pour les deputes, qui iront vers Groningue; comme aussy de nommer les deputes; et le jour d'y comparoistre. Les deputes seront les sieur Schook, Lodesteyn, Raet pensionaire, Mareignault, Hoolck, Wyckel, Ripperda et Schuylenborgh, quoy qu'on doubte si ceux de Omlandes voudront admettre le sieur Schuylenborgh. Le jour est nommé le 13/5 d'Avril.
L'on a en sur le tapis le troupes qui sont en Dantzik, s'il seroit bon de les y laisser ou les rappeller, et donner du subside en leur place: sur quoy le sieur president parlera au deputé de Dantzik. Car donner subside, et y laisser les troupes, semblent deux benefices a la fois, contre lesquels ladite ville n'a pas encore effectue la ratification du traité du 10 Julet de l'année passe.
Au sieur Nyport sera escrit d'avancer tant qu'il peut le traité de marine avec l'Angleterre: et declarer touchant le prinses faites sur les Anglois aux costes de Guinée; que ce font de faits et cas, dont l'estat n'a nulle connoissance consequement point taxable.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Sans doute aurez ouy que le general Middleton se trouve a Dansig: ou par la seule faveur et direction des Polonnois, et principalement par l'instigation de ceux de Denmark fait grande leveé, non pas dans la ville, mais dehors: cela proprement n'est pas tant au dommagé de Swede comme bien a celuy de protecteur. Car Middleton fait tout cela pour en apres fortissier le roy d'Ecosse; et en effect la cabale entre Denmark, roy d'Ecosse, et roy d'Espagne, est telle, que protecteur n'en doit pas douter, comme le protecteur aussy a effectivement esprouvé le Denmark, ne respirant autre que de se joindre a tout ce qui est contraire a protecteur, comme se vit l'an 1652. Quant a Amsterdam et estats d'Holland, ils sont en effect honteux de voir, que tout le monde admire et s'estonne, avec quelle malice ils declinent de ratisier le traité d'Elbing. Et sur tout c'est une subsannation publique faite a protecteur, veu quils l'ont solennelement convie a l'inclusion; a l'inclusion d'un traité dont eux memes font une carte belle. Je suis
Ce 16 Mars 1657. [N. S.]
Marigny to Stouppe.
We expect with impatience the next post, to hear if your protector will be king. I can hardly believe, that he would have set this business on foot underhand, unless he were sure of the army, for that is the only thing which can uphold him; and on the other side, Lambert must think and know, que de demy-collegue, qu'il est a present, he must become a subject, if the government be changed into a monarchy; and if monarchy be necessary, I know not why there hath been such a quarter used to pull it down; and if they will redress the throne, why should not they re-establish those that are pulled down, in regard they are of the royal blood ? But of all that, and what the protector hath done and will do, it may be said, —Divum pater atque hominum rex viderit.
Monsieur de Thou is expected here. You have heard, that St. Gillain is block'd up. There are but few provisions in the place. The governor thereof beat his secretary, who thereupon went and told the earl of Bucquoy, in what condition the place is, and that there is not 14 days provision in it; and thereupon it was ordered to be invested. The marquis of Caracena joined his troops before it. If so be, that the mareschal of Turenne do attempt to relieve it, then don John and the prince of Conde will march against him; otherwise they will leave the business to Caracena.
An intercepted letter.
By what your cousin sends me word, I am fully confirmed of the good wishes you have, that mr. Kirton should thrive in his trade. The times are now exceeding good in these parts: there want only traders in your country, which may be your means and mr. Forrest's supplied; and rest assured, what commodities soever mr. Kirton hath in his own power or can procure, shall be at your and mr. Forrest's service, tho' the last merchandizes mr. Forrest traded in were false made, and not vendible by mr. Kirton; but mr. Kirton is satisfied, that mr. Forrest and mr. Lund were cheated by their own factors, or by other accidents; therefore commands me to assure both mr. Lund and mr. Forrest, that he freely forgets and forgives those mistakes, and will settle a free trade again upon such foundations, as shall not fail. Therefore I pray you encourage all such traders, as are of your acquaintance, and let them know, that mr. Kirton will give them full content and satisfaction for those merchandizes they furnish them withal.
Embassador Boreel to Ruysch.
Concerning the strangers tax in this kingdom, whereof I writ in my letters of the instant, it is held for certain at Bourdeaux and Rochel, that there is treated about it with this court, by one monsieur de la Perelle, one interested in the farm of Bourdeaux, and Tonnay Cherante. The list of the names of the Netherland merchants, who are to be taxed, is already sent from thence hither, to be approved of by the court here, according as it is set down. About a fortnight since there arrived at Bruage from Blois a certain gentleman sent by the duke of Orleans, who in his highness's name demanded satisfaction of 19½ stuyver upon each muide of salt, as it was imposed there in the year 1654, for the space of seven months. Although the said imposition or toll for some certain reasons was never raised, yet this gentleman doth now intend to trouble those that were the buyers of the salt (which were most Netherlanders) for payment of the said toll, whereby the navigation and commerce of the Netherland merchants will be troubled and prejudiced. I have taken special care to cause this business to be narrowly observed, that so their H. and M. L. may be fully informed of what passed concerning this important business.
Embassador Boreel to the states-general.
H. and M. lords,
My lords, the lord president de Thou being now quite ready to take his journey for the United Provinces, desired of me (in regard the passes from Brussels do delay coming) that I should desire of your H. and M. L. a good man of war for him, which might transport him and his train to Rotterdam. He said he hoped the said ship would appear before Diepe the week after Easter, if it be possible; and in regard the lord embassador can be thereby obliged, and thereby safely and conveniently transported, I crave leave to say, that a good ship, with a good large cabin to lodge his lordship in, will be very acceptable.
Embassador Nieuport to Ruysch.
In the beginning of this week, I thought fit to visit the lord secretary of state, and to recommend unto him the furthering of the marine treaty, as also to receive an answer upon my memorandum mentioned at large in my last. His lordship said, that I had undoubtedly understood with what important affairs the government had been busy since the last conference; and that he must acknowledge, that the delays were not only thereby occasioned, but that it was the only cause. That it was easily to be apprehended, how much the issue of such deliberations did concern this government, yet that he would report to his highness, what I had proposed to him; and yesterday his honour sent me word, that he hoped to get an opportunity to come to speak with me; but it is probable he will hardly be able as yet to spare so much time. Mr. Meadows, who was last in Portugal, signified to me to day, that he was to go for Denmark within two or three weeks from the lord protector, and that he was desirous to come to salute me; but understanding I had been let blood to day, he deferred his visit till next week.
Resolution of the states-general.
Was read in the assembly a certain memorandum of the lords commissioners of the city of Dantzick, whereby their H. and M. L. are desired, that if so be they intend to ratify the treaty concluded at Elbing on the 1/17 of September last, not to abandon the preservation of the said city; also that they will use all means to prevent the Weysel from being diverted by the king of Sweden; as also to take some favourable resolution concerning the militia of this state left in Dantzick, that the commonalty thereof may not be discouraged, nor jealousy given thereby to other potentates. Whereupon being debated, it is resolved, that the said memorandum shall be referr'd to the hands of the lords Huygens and others their H. and M. L. commissioners for the affairs of Poland and Sweden, to be by them visited and examined, and to report the same afterwards.
An intercepted letter.
I Received yours of the last, and of the two you name, which is the nearest unto Holland, is the best; but that too is not without its inconveniencies, which may be avoided by bringing our commodity a little nearer, and if possible as far as Williamstadt, or some such place out of the way. I leave that to your own choice, unto which I will conform myself upon a fortnight's warning. I am yours, &c.
To the Venetian agent.
The design here at present is to hinder the French from relieving of St. Gillain, which is block'd up by some of the Spanish forces under the command of the marquis of Caracena, and the prince of Conde is also upon the march with the Spanish horse.
The arrival of the Spanish fleet from the Indies at Cadiz with much silver is now contradicted; and it is said, that they are the five English ships, that came from Guinea and Barbadoes, which were taken by some Spanish men of war, and brought in there.
They have resolved in Spain to furnish king Charles with a very great sum of money, that so he may provide himself with necessaries for the attempting of something with those men he hath raised, upon England; but I do not know, how Spain is able to do it, unless the silver fleet get home safe.
Lockhart, embassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your honor,
Since weddensday last I have been so taken with the ceremonys of this cowrt, as I may say I have been very much busied with that, which is indeed no businesse at all. My audience from his eminence being deferr'd till to morrow morning, I have had no oportunity to moove him in the particulars mentioned in yours. By the next I shall endeavor to give your honor a full account concerning them: in the mean tyme I begg leave to hope, that by the favor of your honor's mediation, the businesse concerning Dunkirk will be carryed on by the readiest ways and means can be fallen upon; for if that affaire shall be delayed till yow have a full retorn of all yow have reason to expect from hence, so much of tyme will be lost as upon that account I shall apprehend the issue of the whole businesse.
I humbly thank your honor for the news you were pleas'd to communicat to me by your
last. That the Lord may direct your councels in affairs of so greatt importance, as theise
now under your consideratione, are, and shall be the prayer of,
Paris 7/17 March 1656/7.
Next morning after my receipt of yours, I sent to enquire after my lord Faulkenbridge, who was gone to Itally. The great news heare is, the king has appoynted his trowps to draw together by the 15th of Apryl, and is resolved in person to releive St. Gillan.
A letter of intelligence.
I have received yours, and you may believe, that what you had from Barret came from me; and that I said touching that unwelcome change is all I can yet say. Here we believe the lord protector is voted king, and suddenly to be crowned. His embassador made his entry from St. Dennis into this town on wednesday last, being brought in by mareschall D'Estampes in one of the king's coaches, followed by one of the queen's, another of the cardinal's, and eight or nine coaches more with each six horses, that belonged to mareschal Turenne, and divers embassadors; and there being a dispute for precedency between the embassadors of Savoy and Holland, the first of them had at least 100 men well mounted and armed for the carrying of the precedency, and they had all white papers in their hats, to know each other by, in case they should come to blows; so that the Dutch embassador's coach was fain to leave the company.
Resolution of the states of Friezland.
The states of Friezland having examined the letter of their H. and M. L. annexed to the petition of the council of state of the United Netherlands, delivered to them on the 22d of February 1657, tending thereunto, that we should give our consent, and make speedy payment of our share of six hundred thousand guilders towards the equipping and maintaining of an extraordinary fleet of war this year for this state, to be set forth by the respective colleges; having had regard to the present state of affairs in Europe, and the preparations for sea, not only by the Turkish pirates, but also by several neighbouring princes and states, to be far greater than formerly, they have consented, and do consent by these presents, in case the other provinces do also consent, and not otherwise, to pay their share of the said six hundred thousand guilders, provided it be only employed by the admiralty at Harlingen, who are to make the equipage; and that the said fleet be no otherwise employed, than for the securing of the commerce and navigation, without that any part of the same shall be separated and sent for the east, as the last year, or otherwise for Brazil, for the service of the West-India company. Without performing of these conditions, we hold our consent for null; and thereupon will not furnish any monies at all. All thus resolved in the assembly of the said states, on the 18th of March 1657. [N. S.]
A letter of intelligence.
In regard our enemies and ill-wishers seek all opportunities to hinder our designs, to effectuate which, the popish party strive to breed impressions at the Turkish court, as if when we should make peace with the Muscovite, then the Ottomanish Port had reason to be afraid, that we, the Muscoviter, and Ragotzi should prove their enemies; upon which grounds they strive to persuade the great Turk to recall and hinder Ragotzi in this his intended expedition. Therefore you would dispose the lord protector, that he (through his ministers at the Turkish court) will take away such jealousies, by demonstrating our intention to peace, and that the Ottoman house have no reason to suspect us, but rather to expect from us all friendship and amity, and to use all possible means to hinder that Ragotzi be not disturbed by the Turkish emperor in this his intended expedition.
Mr. Bradshaw, resident at Hamburg, to secretary Thurloe.
By what I understand from your letter this weeke, you have greater matters in hand than to be trubled with a diversion from me. I shall therefore onely at present referr your honor to the inclosed intelligence, hopeing God hath directed the house in the issuinge of that weightie affaire, of which the next letters may give us notice heere. I shall remayne
Hamb. 10th March 1656–7.
A letter of intelligence to resident Bradshaw.
Right honorable sir,
Since my last of the 16th instant there is nothing past worthy to mention, but that an embassador of Ragotzy sent to the king of Sweden is arrived at Thorn, where he waits for the king's comming thither, for his majesty was not yet then arrived at Thorn, when the post departed from thence: he stayed two days at Grandenz; but on the last sabbath day he was expected without faile to comme to Thorn. I hope within a short time I shall heare the certainty of Ragotzy his comming into Poland, because his embassador hath brought without doubt with him the particulars of this conjunction of armes with the Swedes. The embassador of Ragotzy hath commission from his master, after he hath done his affairs with the king of Sweden, to goe to the duke of Brandenburg, and to the duke of Radtzivill, both now at Coningsberg, for to communicate to them his master's intention.
The king of Sweden intends to goe no further then Warsaw for to meete Ragotzy, of
whom divers letters from Thorn with the last post speake, that he hath taken by force a
little town in Poland, called Sambur; and because they of that towne resisted, he commanded to kill all the Poles within; which if it be so, it will breede at the Polish nation a
bitter anger against Ragotzy; but there will be more heard of shortly. The Dutch embassadors are not gone yet from Marienburg, they intend to follow the king to Thorn.
The king of Poland is at present at Chenstochowa; there he keepes a parlament. As
soone as I shall heare the conclusion of it, I will not faile to impart the same to your honor.
As concerning the Muscoviter, there is so much newes of him, but so contrary one to
another, that I dare not write them. Some say, that the Swedish general count Magnus
de la Garde hath beaten some trupps of the Muscoviter neere Riga, and brought back from
the ennemy a riche preye; some say the contrary, therefore I will forbeare to mention the
particulars of it at present till the next post; for I expect to morrow to heare the certainty
of it with the post from Coningsberg. I believe if the victory had been of the Swedish
side, it would have been published and printed allreadie. The Muscoviters embassador is
yet at Coningsberg, and cannot get his dispatch from the duke of Brandenburg. This
being all at present, I remaine
From Elbing the 20th of March 1657. [N. S.]
General Monck to secretary Thurloe.
I have received two letters from you, the one of the third, and the other of the fifth instant, and am very glad to heare, that you proceede so unanimouslie in this great businesse that you are uppon, and that the officers are better satisfied then they were: for the officers heere, by soe much as I can perceive as yett by their tempers, they will bee very well satisfied with what his highnesse and the parliament shall thinke fitt for the settlement and peace of the three nations, and the good people in them. I intreate you to put his highnesse in minde of sending down a councellor heere, or else the army will bee uppon free quarter. I remayne
Dalkeith 10° March 1659.
Capt. Claypoole to H. Cromwell, major-general of the forces in Ireland.
The favours, that I have received from your lordship, are too greate to be valued, being not in my powar the least to desearve; but if your lordship should be pleased as to give mee powar or opportunety corespondent with my will, my parformancies should be as greate as my abylytie. I doe not expect to be in a condition of acting any thing worthy your lordship's acceptance, but shall indevor, that I may be a fitt object for the reseiving some of your lordship's overflowing favor, which I hope will not so be spilt. I must now humbly begg your lordship's pardon for my being heare without your lordship's leive. I dare not be so bould, or presume so far as to say, that I can write any thing to your lordship, that shall be newes; but I shall desire leive to obsearve one thing, which the Lord is very much seane in, that amongst all this change and greate transactions, theare should be so litle publick murmerings or discontintents; and that theay should goe so cleare and unanimusly, as one may say (in comparison) in theare voates. I hope this pecable way of proceding will very much disapoint the common ennemy beyond the seas and at home, who did undoubtedly waite for a quite contrary effect: theare is nothing will please all; but this haith pleased a greate many. I humbly begg your lordship's pardon for this, and my subscribeing my selfe,
London March the 10th 56.
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major-general of the army in Ireland.
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What issue the Lord will bringe thinges unto here, I am not able to say: the parliament is engaged in very longe debates about the remonstrance, which my former mentioned, haveing desired his highnes to name his successor. They proceeded to the consideration of settinge up another house of parlament, and voted that his highnes doth call parlaments consistinge of two houses; now they are debateinge the qualifications of the comons house; and then wee shall come to the manner of choosinge the other house. The debates will be very longe, I feare. The sb 743/322 ch 11 7/5 4 th sl 7 7/6 5 sb 6 11/4 5 eurst 1 37/7 4 d 8 10 10/6 7 5 what it will come unto, I knowe not. It behoves every body in trust to be carefull. The officers have beene with his highnes this weeke, and exprest all manner of confidence and satisfaction in his highnes; and I verily beleeve they speake the truth, even those, who seemed to be most dissatisfied a little before. Theaforesayd g1145/724 st 556/343 hath in a manner sq 93/44 t sth 86/64 o sh 8 9 12 14/4 4 7 12 wh 4/2 and th 14 12/12 6 h 394/242 but 23/22 ab 7/3 de oppinion 10 6 8/6 3 6 f 8/5 ss another.
I finde by a letter I received from generall Monck the last night, that thinges there are in a good condition, and the army in a very good temper there. There beinge an occasion to raise more forces for carryeinge on the Spanish warre, the parlament was moved therein, and they forthwith resolved, that his highnes, with the advise of his councell, might raise such further forces as shall be sound necessary, whereby they shewed their entire considence in his highnes.
The kinge of Sweden by reason of the great army that the prince of Transilvania hath
brought into Poland, is in a good condition. That prince is come as sar as Cracovia with
an army of 60000 men. The great difficulties, which that kinge is like to meet with,
wil be from the Dutch and Dane, as alsoe from the Muscovite. His highnes is sendinge
two agents, one to the Dane, and the other to the Muscovite, to incline them towards
Sweden. I rest
Whitehall 10th March 1656.
Lockhart, embassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
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May it please your honor,
After the ceremoniall part of the audience I had from his eminence upon the 9/19th instant was over, &c. I pressed the affaire, that I had received your honor's commands in, concerning the ge ne ral offi ce you desyred showld be allowed besydes the command er in ch ef, but did receive no satisfactione for it. I shall not troble you with the reasons were offered against it, and shall beseech you to believe I urg'd it with all the earnestnesse I could. Card. Mararin assures, that by consent betwixt k. of Sp. and Ca. Stewart the in va sion of England from Flanders de se d' unto September next. I was showen very great probabilityes for the certainty of this intelligence: it's advysed your having any knowledge of it may be as much concealed as is possible. D. of York resolves to passe this campagne in the 7 provinces Hamburg; he desyres a pensione from France for his subsistence there. My opinion being asked about it, I did not much oppose it, believing his being withdrawen from that party will not only occasion jealosies amongst themselves, but also betwixt them and Spain; and my fears I may (in so doing) have misapprehended your interest, make me beg your commands touching my further carriadge in it, for their is yett tyme left to lay obstructions in its way, I having kept myself clear from giving my consent to it. I am also informed, that Ch. Stewart hath some designe upon Bristol: this is not so positively asserted as the abovementioned was; howsoever there were some circumstances, that make it so much probable as merits your taking notice of it. I have sent your honor one of Ch. Stewart's orders, if you had none of them before: this will convince any man, that doubts his approving the warr his catholicke brother hath with England, and that without any distinction he accounts all Englishmen rebells, and is willing to offer them as his sacrifice to the Spanish cruelty.
The Cardinal did againe desyer, that the protector would lend b ra s s g un s. The hint of your thoghts concerning this I had receiv'd formerly, made me tell him plainly nothing of that nature could be done, and offered in lieu of them what your former seemed to give me some authority for. I was told such could not serve your turn, and was very earnestly solicited to begg that favor from you, the kindnesse would be esteemed greater then ten times the real valew of the thing was worth; de shall be sent ab oa rd your ships within 3 weeks after their landing for by that tyme they may conveniently make use of their own. After what I have heard of your intentions, I dare say no more for their desyers in this, save that I really forsee, that their c. r. ing their own. may very much obstruct the celign. M. Turenne is also of that opinion.
It's lykewayes earnestly begged, their may be some provision made in England of ha y and oa ts. I knew this would be very troblesome to you, and theirfore endeavoured to putt it upon M. Bordeaux, but was answered it could not be done by him without makeing too much noyse, and giving upon that account too great a jealousie of the design. I believe you may meet with some particolar person, who will undertake it, and manage it both with honesty and secrecy.
I have been spoak too by the cardinall to procure him some able engineers from England for the service of this campagne, and have undertaken to use my best endeavours for it, and am authorized to assure their having all reasonable satisfaction for their pains. If your honor know any such who may be spared, I shall answer for whatsoever you shall think fitt to allow them, either for their transport or subsistence. I give you this troble frelier, because they are to be employed for the benefit of your frends, and the disadvantage of your enemys.
I thought by this tyme to have been in condition to have sent the authentick copies, according to your desyer in your last; but really I have met with several little delays in the signing of the originalls, which do not proceed from the cardinall, who hath given me many testimonies of his forwardnesse in that affaire; but their is that unhappy way tolleratted heare, that the persons, who are employed to act in any affaires, may by their negligence or otherwise retard businesse, that I am sparing to make any noyse about some delayes and disapoyntments I have mett with upon very frivilos excuses, because those concerned might doe some ill offices at other tymes. I have mett with the same difficultys about the money. I beleive by this time it is pay ed, the person I apoynt to receive it, having order from them to attend this morning for that end: it cannot be sent to London sooner than by the next poast.
Sir, till you chyde me for my rudnesse and boldnesse, I shall still continue to begg, that the slownesse of their motion heare may rather quicken than retard yours. At your sir st appearing upon the coast of Flanders, to fleet will not need to be so considerable in ship s i man and wd ma nnea bo at.
If my news from Flanders, and yours from states-general proove trew, I hope you shall have a peaceable summer in England, and will have not only opportunity to settle the government, but will also be able vigorosly to prosecute your designes before Cadiz and Jamica; and if upon any of theise accounts any levys be made in this spring, I shall beg leave to recommend mr. Pircville for a captaine, if your honor have thoght of nothing fitter for him. There is also one John Tea, who serves in major Alison's company, for whom I begg a lieutenant's place: he hath carried arms all along for the parliament; and, before his regiment was reduced, served as lieutenant. The cardinal did much presse me to acquaint your honor with his fears for the king of Swedden. The emperor endeavours to have the Transilvanian recalled by the Turk; which, if obtained, will utterly ruin the Swedds. He desyers his highness may assist the king of Sweden with some mony, sayeth, himself hath done great things that way, and was then about to give orders for 200000 crowns more. I assured him my master had no lesse care, and, I believed, put himself to no lesse charge for maintaining of the Swedish interest.
He did lykwyse entertaine me concerning the news from England, of which I made
him a trew account, according to that information I had received from your honor.
His eminence expressed a great deale of satisfactione, and begged his highness would beleeve, that none shall exceed him in zeall for every thing that can contribute to his highness
honor and happinesse. I am,
Paris March 11/21 [1656/7.]
Lockhart to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your honor,
Mr. Walker, my lord Lambert's servant, hath order to return into England, and I beleeve I must send the coppies mentioned by him. He shall not know what he caryeth, no more doeth any about me as yet imagine their is any such businesse in hand; but he being to part next week, I could not hansomely send another. I should give you the troble to tell you, that I have half ruined my self with my equipage and furniture of my house, which in some way I was oblidged to, by the honors given me at my receptione; but I have no tyme to offer my grievances of this nature, only I must begg that by your honor's favour the mony allowed me by his counsell may be payed so by advance as I may have some little stock in hand.
Colonel Brayne to the protector.
May it please your highnes,
About the later end of last moneth it hath pleased God to take colonel Stoakes and his wise out of this life, who have leste three sonnes behinde them, the ealdest of them not above fifteene yeares old, his estate much wasted by his removeal hither, many else of his family dead, and about two thirds of the planters that came along with him; the rest in a very sickly condition, and in danger of starveing (though the earth produceth in abundance of what they planted); but they are so weake, that they are neither able to gather the old, nor to plant againe. The children of colonel Stoakes are an object of your highnes pitty and charitie, their estate being but small, and they yong. Neere a third part of the souldiery that came along with me are dead, and many of the rest sick. I have delivered out the last moneth's provision that I had for souldiery and fleete, soe that if some supply come not before that be ended, we shal be in great hassarde of starveing. Our onely hopes is, that (through God's providence and your highnes care) something will arrive before this be all spent. The old souldiery here are generally in good health, and have planted much within these two moneths; but I seare necessitie will compell them to take that up againe before it be neere its full growth, and soe waste that in few dayes, which in a competent time would have bin sufficient to have maintained them. I have done my utmost to prevent it, by sending out those that have shoes and competent cloathing to kill cattle, to supply the sicke, and them that attend the plantations. Those of the new souldiery that are in health, I have ordered to help the Nevis planters, to gett meate by theire labour. I have ordered the fleete to the several quarters of the iland, to kill cattle, and soe to lengthen out theire provisions. I have sett people at worke, to make fault; and I hope there wil be sufficient to lade back the New-England vessels, when they shall come hither with provisions. I have also imployed a German, to catch and tame cattle (he having done the same formerly in Brazelle); he is to have every fiste beast for himselfe, the other sower parts I shall divide among them that are in greatest want. I have likewise sent to New-England for provisions, soe that I am not conscious to my selfe of neglecting of any thing that might tend to the conservation of our lives, if the Lord please to blesse these weake endeavours. I have sent the Martin-galley with letters to Bermudas, to perswade the inhabitants to remove hither; she is to touch at Barbadoes, Nevis, and Christophers; but the interest of the governours being to keepe the inhabitants there (they receaving benefitt by them) I feare I shall have little successe therein; yet I thought it my duty to attempt. I have bought a Spanish friggott (being the prize of a private man of warre) for 400 pound: she is of sixty tunnes, not a yeare old, and a very good sayler. I intend within few dayes to send her out to seek for prise and intelligence, and have manned her with fifty men and 8 gunnes. The shipping here is a greate charge to your highnes; but at present they are able to doe little service here, in regard of the want of victuals and all other sort of stores, neither can their own carpenters keepe them in order, for every time that they ply to windward they grow defective, and theire sailes and rigging spoyled, being old and rotten; but I hope admiral Goodson is with your highnes before this time, who can give a more full accompt of these things. Since colonel Stoak's death I have been forced to act alone in all those things, wherein your highness commissioners and my selfe were equally impowered; otherwise it would have retarded, if not utterly overthrown, all endeavours for the planting of this place; but if your highnes approve not thereof, I humbly beg your highnes will speedily impower some one for the doeing thereof. I have made a small fortification at Port-Morant, and mounted thereon 10 whole calverins, which doth secure that harbour. I have also prepared some materialls for the fortifying of this place, but feare I shall not be able to finish any considerable part thereof, for want of money. Our greatest wants and desires I have desired admiral Goodson to make knowne to your highnes, and sollicite for a supply. Therefore I shall not at present trouble your highnes therewith, but shall ever remayne
Colonel Brayne to secretary Thurloe.
I Have written to his highnes at lardge what straites we are in, and I have desired admirall Goodson to sollicite for a supply of our wants, both which will come to your knowledge; therefore I neede not repeate them. At present our condition is very sad, by reason of the small allowance we are forced to, both in fleete and land-forces (and of that we have but one moneth's allowance lest unspent) and we are like to be much worse, in case a supply come not before this be wholly out. However (God willing) my utmost endeavours shall never be wanting to preserve our selves and the place, though the hearts of our souldiery, by reason of sicknes and wants, is brought very lowe, most being barefoote, and some scarcely cloathed to cover their nakednes, and some dead by famine, they having eaten in one weeke as much as was allowed them for a moneth. I found nothing considerable here, and brought little with me (two of our ships miscarrying by the way) and I may truly say, that all that we had hath bin husbanded to the utmost advantage. The fower ships that were sent to the West of Cartargene are returned, having seene noe faile, except three within the harbour at Cartargene, which were two gallions and one merchant-man; they landed at Santa Martha, but found nothing considerable, the inhabitants being removed from the sea-side further up into the countrey, as they have done all along the coast, in such places as they are not able to defend. Some Spanish prisoners tould them, that they expected the Spanish fleete daily at Cartargene; and that there came lately advise to those in harbour, not to sett faile till they had further orders. My lord St. John's sone doth behave himselfe very civilly, and studies something in the mathematicks, but is not willing (as he tells me) as yet to undertake any imployment untill he hath more experience: he stands in neede of money for necessaries; he had some of me, and 1 cannot finde he doth mispend anye. But all things are very deere in this place. I humbly beseech your favour, that I be not continued here above one yeare. I beleeve there are many much more able then my selfe, who will willingly imbrace the imployment; and a retired private country life wil be much fitter for me. Though I sent these letters by a merchants ship, yet have soe provided, that they (being in a boxe of leade) may be dropt over board, in case of danger of takeing. I shall trouble you noe further at present, but rest
Cagway in Jamaica 12° Martii 1656.
Nieuport, the Dutch embassador in England, to Ruysch.
Upon Friday night last, at eleven of the clock in the night, as my pacquet was carrying to the post-house, one of the messengers of the council brought me the enclosed letter of the lord secretary of state, with the enclosed depositions of some of the schippers and other persons (who served aboard of the four English ships taken, as they pretend, by two Netherland ships) upon the coast of Guinea. The night before I received a letter from the lords commissioned council of the lords states of Zealand, and therein enclosed a pertinent certificate, and some copies of letters, concerning the equipage of the said pretended Netherland ships, by which the said English were taken; and in the beginning of this week I looked for a opportunity to speak with the lord secretary of state about it, who came to me yesterday in the afternoon, as soon as the parliament was up. I told his honor, that I received this letter and papers so late, that I could not send them away by the last post; and that in the mean time I had received a particular and full certificate from the lords of Zealand, concerning the condition of the said two ships, by which the four English ships were taken upon the coast of Guinea. And in regard the said lords of Zealand had desired, that the names of the deponents, and of the other persons expressed in the depositions, might be concealed as long as it was possible, I read unto his honour the said certificate (passing by the said mentioned names) and told him by word of mouth, that the chiefest persons were to be looked upon no otherwise than Netherland runnagades; for John Schraell, who is said to command upon the biggest ship, being distasted with the West-India company, hath long time since (to shew his resentment) betaken himself to the Swedes service upon the coast of Guinea; and that he had (as I am credibly informed) done very much prejudice to the said company: as I had also understood, that Claes Prins of Huysduynen had also quitted the service of the said company in distaste, and had kept himself for the most part out of his native country; so that I did admire to see the said business (being of such a nature) that the judges of the admiralty had proceeded with so much violence, only upon the complaints of the one party. His honour desired, that I would let him have the said certificate, and was of an opinion, that the names ought not to be omitted; that I might be assured, it was not their intention to proceed upon it in any hasty or disorderly way. That my written memorandum concerning the said proceedings of the judges of the admiralty having been read in the council, it was thought thereupon to hear the judges upon it; and that they had fully declared, that by their fixing of the summons upon the exchange, and their letter to me, they had no other intent therewith than to be the better able to hear the witnesses according to law, which were produced by the interested; and that they did in no wise intend to determinate any thing in the said business. I answered, that I was informed by a very good hand, that there was another intention, but that they would have been ashamed of it, in regard it would have been so point blank contrary to the articles of the last treaty, and the practice of all civilized people; and I hoped that the government here would take care to order the affairs otherwise than the civilians would have them, who commonly get the most profits by the differences. His honour desired me with a loving and smiling countenance, that I would let him have the said certificate and papers translated, and that I would send to their H. and M. L. the attestations sent to me on the 12th instant, which he said were taken by the governor of the Barbadoes, and not before the judges of the admiralty here, trusting, that their H. and M. L. according to their usual wisdom, will take sufficient order about it. His honour said further, that I undoubtedly had understood, what important affairs were at present in debate in parliament; that thereby the commissioners of the marinetreaty had been prevented for coming to me; but that he would do all that he could to dispose them to it very suddenly, the business being so far proceeded in the parliament, that he hoped it would be made an end of it in few days. I communicated to his honor upon this occasion that, which their H. and M. L. were pleased to command in their letter and resolutions of the 24th Jan. and the 2d of February last, concerning the revoking of the acts of parliament of the 9th of Octob. and the first of Decemb. 1651. His honour having heard my reasons and arguments with attention, said, that it was a business, to which in his particular he could give no answer; but if I would be pleased to propose any thing thereof to the lord protector, he would procure me an audience. I desired that I might have one, that so I might deliver to his highness some papers concerning some insolencies committed, not only by fishermen of this state, but also by the convoyers thereof, against the herring-ships belonging to the United Netherlands; whereof his honour said he had not heard before, and that he would procure me audience.
Marigny to Stouppe.
By your letter of the 16th, you did very much rejoice me, in assuring me, that you are resolved to come hither. I promise you, I will stay for you; and when you are here, we can then entertain one another with more liberty than letters. Send me word, when I shall have that happiness; and be assured, you shall find the best friend you have in the world. If you come hither, we may give unto your own hand that, which we would have printed privately. You may assure that person, that gave you that letter, that it was delivered to his own hand. You will have heard, that St. Gillain is vigorously assaulted. The besiegers had taken all the outworks; but the governor made a fally out, and retook them before they had secured them. Monsr. the prince coming in just at that time, caused them to be assaulted again, and retook them. There were several killed on both sides. The prince was shot through his hat, and the marquis of Persan slightly wounded. It is believed the place will be suddenly taken.
Courtin to Bourdeaux, the French embassador in England.
The states of the provinces of Holland have at last resolved, to set forth 48 sail of ships. The admiral Opdam is gone to cruise with 36 of them in the mediterranean, and upon the coast of Portugal, and 12 are designed for the Baltick, to protect their commerce; but these last will not be ready so soon, for they apprehend, lest it should give a bad example, and cause the protector to send some of his thither likewise, which might give some jealousy to this state, and it may be a prejudice to their commerce; and besides, they do not seem inclined to fall out with England.
The resident of Denmark doth solicit very much the states-general, to make a league offensive and defensive with the king his master, against the Swedes; but he hath not yet prevailed, though the embassador of Spain doth labour all that he can, to dispose the minds of those that govern, to embrace this offer. But it is not likely, that this state will break with Sweden, since that they have their commerce and navigation made sure to them upon the Baltick sea, by the last treaty of Elbing.
The commissioners of the admiralty in Holland, to the states-general.
H. and M. lords,
The present commissioners of the colleges of the admiralty having received communication by your H. and M. L. of the resolution of the noble great mighty lords, the states of Holland and West-Friezland, of the 19th instant, relating to two other resolutions of their noble great lordships, of the 25th of January last, and the 17th instant, to the end to accommodate your H. and M. L. with their considerations; for the accomplishing of which desire they have been willing to serve your H. and M. L. that they, adhering to their former advice, do believe, that the number of 36 men of war to be only employed in the West, will be enough to act against the dangers and prejudices, wherewith the commerce and navigation of this state is threatned in those parts; so that there shall need no greater number, according as hath been already advised, if so be that your H. and M. L. shall think it needless, that any ships, as in the last fore year, be extraordinarily employed upon the East-sea. That moreover they, the commissioners, observing how by the said noble great lordships resolution no mention was made of the subsidy of 600000 guilders proposed formerly by their noble great lordships, and in regard it is taken by them, as if it were the intention of the said noble great lordships, that the said equipage is to be only managed upon the last and safe conduct-money, that they do find themselves troubled about it, and are forced to communicate the same to their collegues, and to understand of them how far they are pleased with the said resolution; wherefore they the commissioners will depart with your H. and M. L. leave, to be here again, at the furthest, against Thursday next, and then to declare unto your H. and M. L. how the same is approved of their principals, and what can be performed to them, to effect this important affair.
From the secretary of state of the Landgrave of Hessen, M. Faust.
The ecclesiastical electors Mentz, Triers, and Cologne, together with the bishop of Munster, and the duke of Newburg, have (as no doubt you know already) made an union of defence together contra quoscunq; Now this united party are going about how to draw in some of the evangelical party also into their own union; to which effect there hath been some dealing with the general states of the United Provinces, and they have lately invited solemnly thereunto the princely houses of Brunswick and Hesse Cassel; but when these found not good suddenly to assent to the motion, but first proposed unto those, that gave the invitation, this question, whether they would receive into that connection the king of Sweden and the elector of Brandenburg, for so far as their territories were in the Roman empires ? which being answered of late affirmatively, upon certain conditions; now we are about to understand, what the aforesaid king and elector will say to the business. What the issue of the business will be, time will shew, and I shall not forget with your permission to acquaint you therewith hereaster, &c.
Barriere to Stouppe.
We expect our court to return hither triumphing to morrow or next day after, for the taking of St. Gillain, which is a victory very important for this country. It was very vigorously taken, and had like to have cost us dear, for his highness the prince of Conde received a musket-shot upon his hatband. I believe he never did any action of more valour than this; for our men being beaten off, he put himself at the head of them, and brought them on again, standing up to the neck in water, and took that fort from which they were beaten, which caused them within to yield. The occasion of this siege happened through the intelligence of the Irish of that garrison, which were some 300 with the king of England, which the earl of Bristol so managed, that it gave heart to the Spanish forces to lay siege to it; otherwise they had not besieged it. This then is a great service, which the king of England hath done for Spain. He hopeth the king of Spain will do him a better. We expect to hear by every post the crowning of the protector.
Count Brienne to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
I Was yesterday at Vincences, where his eminence communicated unto me a letter, which you writ to him, and where it was resolved what is to be done about the business, which you writ to him of, and which will be sent you by an express.
When the troops are landed, we will then advise with those that command them what is best to be done, whereby the Spaniards may be necessitated to hearken to a peace, or that the prosecution and continuance of the war may give us an opportunity to recover what we have lost, or at least a good part. You will have understood by my lord, your father, how that St. Gillain is besieged by the Spaniards, that some of the Irish that are in the garrison held some intelligence with them, and the assurance, which was given them of helping them to that place, made them to take the boldness to frame that siege. In all likelihood it will cost them dear, for mons. De Schomberg is a brave person, and very skilful, and will resist to the utmost. If the advice, which my lord Protector hath from the court of Sweden, doth answer to ours, you will hope, as we do, that there will be a way found out to accommodate the kings of Sweden and Poland. The pope's nuncio in Spain having sounded the king of Spain about making peace with France, hath sent word by an express to his holiness, that the king of Spain hath no mind to make a peace with France. Your letter of the 16th instant was delivered to me on the 21st, which did represent unto us the affairs of England in that state, which we did always imagine they would return to again at last.
The Dutch embassadors in Denmark to Ruysch.
By our last to your lordship we humbly advised their H. and M. L. that as long as they have hopes here, that their H. and M. L. will agree with his majesty about what we writ over a while since, and which project was made known to the provinces, his majesty will not conclude any thing with the resident of Sweden as to prejudice the said project; but in regard we perceive here, that they have advice here, that the same is not to be expected from their H. and M. L. we cannot tell, what alteration of counsels that persuasion may occasion. In the mean time they seem to treat very earnestly with the resident of Sweden, and many projects have past between them, and there is desired on the side of Denmark satisfaction for the contraventions of the treaty of Brosembroo, and that the city of Dantzick may be thoroughly secured. What the contraventions are, we do not yet hear, the same being not yet opened; but monday next is appointed to make overture thereof, in regard the resident of the king of Sweden pretends, that Sweden hath made no contravention against the said treaty; the said overture is to be made to the said embassador of Brandenburg, as mediator. And as we are informed, the same is of no small consequence relating to some places taken from the Danes by the Swedes, and the securing of Dantzick, about which such difficulties, I believe, will arise, as will not beeasily answered; but whether they will be facilitated by this side in the said points, we cannot yet foresee, but it is to be supposed, that thereupon the progress of the said treaty with the resident of Sweden will chiefly consist. In the project of the resident of Sweden is again inserted, in the article of excluding all foreign ships out of the east sea, and in that of the commissioners of his majesty, that the obligation for a defensive alliance inserted therein shall have no effect during this present war with the king of Sweden; but these are both such points, upon which the treaties, as near as we can judge, will not conclude.
Lockhart, embassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your honor,
Yours of March 9/19 I have received, and am gladd to heare your levies are in so good a way: the place and their precise time of landing is not yett agreed uppon, but in all probability Calais or near it must be the places, and the 12th of Apryl or thereabout the tyme. Next weeke I shall make it my businesse to have both ascertained. As to the mony for the armes, your honor will perceive by the traject de campagne (a coppy wherof shall accompany this) that the 3000 men to be levyed by his highnesse are to be armed by him; the other 3000 are to receive arms at their landing; and least several things in the articles sent may meete with a hard constructione, I must begg leave to acquaint your honor with the reasons, that moved my condescendance to them.
In the first place, I did foresee there was a necessity of bringing things to a conclusion, so as you might have tyme to make the preparations necessary on your part; and I mett with so many changes and alterations of their thoghts about the particolars treated on, as I had a world of difficulty to gett them fixed in what is now aggreed upon:
In the second place, I had hints given me, that the propositions made by the nontio, in the behalfe of a peace with Spayn, were not so much disrellished at court, as their own professions and publick same speake them to be. Thirdly, I apprehended, if the Spanyard were not vigorosly attacked in Flanders, (which I did not see the French in a condition to doe without your assistance) that they might have spared a considerable body of men for the carrying on Ch. Stewart's designs against England. And fourthly, I consithered that the advantages would arise to England from his highnesse haveing a interest in the continent, might over-ballance the disadvantage of condescending to some little particulars, that they had so tenaciously stuck upon. And tho' I am fully persuaded a person more experienced in an affaire of this nature might have better'd your conditions in it much, yett I hope when your honor consithers my instructions, you will not find that I have exceeded their limitts in any thing, and that in some particulars I have not gone all their lenths; for tho' by the third article of the treaty its aggreed, that his highnesse shall arme the 3000 men he is to levy, by the eighth its provyded, that his highnesse may employ them in his own service for garrisoning the place shall be delivered to him, without any obligatione to furnish the French with a levy of the lyk number, so that indeed his highnesse saveth both his men and armes.
I did not aggree to the seventh article, untill I had the cardinall's solemn promise, that all possible means shall be used for the assigning Dunquirk and Mardyk in the first place. I stuck much upon the eleventh article, gott severall alterations made in it; and yett as it stands, I feare it may appear harsh enoff, and would be really soe, if the salvo of nihil adversus regimen cui submissi suerint molientes did not leave a latitude to his highnesse.
The twelsth obligeth his highnesse to nothing but what must have been howsoever, for it will be impossible to raise contributione from any towne, where either the French or Spanyards keep garrison. I did not much debate the narrative of the treatty, finding them much concerned in these expressions, in order to the satisfactione of the clergy and others, and conceiving his highnesse not to be so. And as to the precedency his christian majesty and France hath all along in the articles signed by them, his highnesse and England hath the same in those signed by me. I did also urge the addition of dominions theirunto belonging to his highnesse's title, but finding they were jealos I might by that intend to include France, I did not insist in it, and the rather because in the treatty concluded with the French embassador in England, I found noe such words mentioned. I found so small inclinations heere for condescending to any thing contained in the secrett article, as I was gladd to take it in the terms it runns; only in that I signed the word Romano is added to summo pontifice.
Sir, I am so much convinced these articles have so little in them for your service, as I shall live in all the disquiett and torment imaginable, until I heare his highnesse and the counsell are satisfied with them; and if I have any hopes at all, that my escapes and weaknesses will be pardoned, they proceed from what I promise myself of protectione from your honor, which in all humility I implore.
Its expected that next week we shall have the ill newes of St. Gillan's being rendred to the ennemy. The place was in condition to have held out this three months, but all the outworks were betrayed unto the ennemy by a regiment of Irish, which the governor had received their by the cardinall's consent. This disaster troubles the court so much the more, because it was not expected, and yet the king continues his resolutions for drawing his forces into the field by the middle of Apryl. Mareschal Turenne, who did me the honor to see me this morning, tells me he hath apoynted rendezvouse for all the troops against that tyme, and that himself hath orders to be ready to leave Paris by the 10th of Apryil. He was earnest with me to sollicit your preparing a good many small vessels or well mann'd shalloupps, without which he faith it will not be possible to keep any besieged places from being received.
The hast I am in to dispatch mr. Walker with this post hath made me forgot to say any thing concerning the pay of the officers and soldiers. The coppy of their establishment herewith also sent will be your best informer; only I dare assure you, it is in all things equal to the cardinall's own regiment of Italians, and is almost the double of what is given to any other regiments in this service; the bread given to the soldiers and all the other officers under an ensign being a considerable help to their subsistence. The commander in chiefs owne pay, and that as collonel and captaine amounts to 16 crowns per diem besides his pensione; I cannot learn that any mareschals or lieutenant-generals in this army comes to so much. I am promised a small addition to the corporalls and sergeants pay; the ministers have a crown per diem, and their own chapplans have but 15 sols.
I am at present soe poore, as I have not given mr. Walker any thing for the expence of
his journey, which will amount to 20 l. and must begg your pardon for the consusione of
this account of businesse, which you receive from,
Paris March 15/21, 1656.