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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September (1 of 4)
Count Charost, governor of Calais, to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
You will be very much surprized, when you shall understand, that the court is marching in all haste to Metz; and the duke of Bavaria doth give out, that he doth pretend to the empire. Our armies lie still. We shall suddenly know what they will do. You will have heard of the defeat of the governour of Rocroy by monsieur de Grandpré. This is all the news we have at present.
The information of George Thompson.
Saith, he well knoweth Thomas Gardiner, now prisoner in the Gate-house upon suspicion of high-treason, for attempting to kill his highness; and that about 5 years since he was at Salisbury with him, this informant, and one mr. Dowthwayte, and one mr. Kenningman, chaplain to the lady Beauchamp, major Holmes, John St. Barbe, major Peircy, and several others, at the king's-arms-inn there, in their secret councils, to seize on several garrisons in the west of England for Charles Stuart; and that afterwards the said Gardiner was at several other meetings in London with this informant and others, as namely, colonel Phillips, and colonel Slingsby, and divers more of that party; and that he was very active and willing, and used very pressing words to the rest of them, to promote that design. That this informant hath always observed the said Gardiner to be a very dangerous person, and desperate in the course of his life, for carrying on any design for Charles Stuart: that the said Gardiner hath (to this informant's knowledge) lodged at the house of one Sedgwick, a barber in the Strand, by the space of 5 years last past, where this informant did once lodge with him; and that he also lodged with him in Ram-alley, by the Inner-Temple, whilst that design was on foot, and at the sign called the Eagle and Child in the Strand.
That about 2 or 3 years since the said Gardiner told this informant, that he was going to Flanders, to the Scots king, to speak with him; and that he went to him accordingly, as this informant heard and believes: that he is of familiar acquaintance with the most dangerous persons about London, and is taken for a Hector.
This informant believes in his conscience, that (he having diligently observed the conversation of the said Gardiner) no person would sooner attempt to murder his highness, or do any other thing to the states prejudice, than the said Gardiner.
That Sedgwick's wife told this informant, that she was appointed to contrive the escape of the lord Capell out of the Tower, whilst he was here in prison, by leaving her apparel there for him to put on, and she to put on his clothes.
That, whilst this informant was in the Tower, the said Sedgwick's wife came often to the Tower, to visit Dowthwayte, Phillips, and others: and that she and her husband are very dangerous persons; and she especially a fit instument to act any design, they both of them being for Charles Stuart and his interest, and have so appear'd to be several times.
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major-general of the army in Ireland.
I Received your lordship's of the 25th of August, from Kilkenye, and shall very faithfully obey your comaunds therein. As to the petitions I have received from some of the councell, and from the cittye of Dublyn, I judge the considerations your lordship hath concerninge them, are very prudent; but I thinke you need not be soe carefull about satisfieing his highnesse, that your lordship had noe hand in them: that he is well assured of. And with all the inconveniencies mentioned by your lordship to attend addresses of this kinde, this is yet to be observed, the singuler affection, which the people of the countrye beare to your lordship; which I thinke is to be lookt upon as the great goodnesse of God to you, and to be acknowledged upon all occasions. I am sorry the government of Ireland is not yet setled, because it will be matter of discourse abroad, and possiblie be of much prejudice to the publique affaires: the reasons of the delay thereof will be mistaken by most, and possiblie are not soe important, as they are imagined to be; which they, that knowe the manner of our proceedinges here, will easily be satisfied in. However, there is, as I thinke, a necessitie of dispatchinge that business; and I trust the next post may bringe your lordship some resolutions therein. The counsell of Ireland is in the same condition; noe commission is yet sent to sweare them, accordinge to the late petition and promise.
His highnes is yet at Hampton-court, and hath beene there ever since my last; soe that very little is done here by the councell. To morrow his highnes will be here to give audience to the Portugall ambassador, but will returne thither againe within 2 or 3 dayes, Blessed be God, my lord Richard continues in a very hopefull way of recovery: there's nothinge appearinge, but that his bones are well sett; and he is very free from any feavour or distemper that way. This hath been a very great affliction to his highnes and his family here. If a sparrow falls not to the ground without the providence of God, much lesse doe such thinges sall upon a person of his quality by chance. This rod hath a voyce, and the lord give us all hearts to heare and obey it.
The Dutch fleet is gone through the Chanel towards Portugall; and the ambassador of that kinge is now here: he is much startled at it, and I feare it will have very bad effects. The Spanyard could have never had soe great an advantage as this, but from the Dutch; and I am perswaded, that God will judge them for it at one tyme or other.
There is likewise come an extraordinary envoye from Sweden; he arrived here but 2 dayes since, but hath not yet had audience. That kinge's affaires goe very well in Denmarke, but very ill in Poland. The emperor's sonne is joyned with the Dane, and the Dutch with them both; soe that the Dutch are become the great supporters of the Austrian familye.
A letter of information from J. Strode.
In order to your honor's desire, I have written these followinge lines. Major Wilmore, formerly in the king's armie, who att the time when the armie went over for Flanders by his highnes's order, went privately for Bullen, and then under pretence of a volunteere, listed himselfe a foote-soldier under the comaund of lieutenant-colonell Fleetwood, on purpose to seduce and betray the armie: and in pursuance of this dissigne runn away, and brought 16 or 17 soldiers to the duke of Yorke, and after came to the king of Scotts to Brussells, and tendred his service to him; where he was received with greate respect for his service donne; and since that time was imployed to write to several friends in England, to animate them to come over uppon the same account; and that several persones in this citie of London have great sumes of money of his in theire hands, who doe uppon all occasions supply him with money uppon bills of exchange or otherwise. Cominge lately from Bridges, I cams in company with one Hartgill Barnes to Since, and soe to Flushinge, with others, who was intended, as I heard, to goe for England. I knowinge him to be a dangerous person, and formerly a comaunder in the late king's armie, made my addresse to capt. Rooth, comaunder of the Dartmouth friggott, and acquainted him of my cominge over, and that the said Barnes, with several other dangerous persons, were ready to imbarque themselves for England; and I desired him, if he pleased, to doe me the favour as to be a meanes to convey him over for England, that I might have bene landed before them, that his highnes mought have bene acquainted with it, that they might have bene apprehended att their present landinge. He promised me he would, and sent me aboard his shipp. When I came there, he told me, that he was to sett fayll for Dunkerk-road, att which place he would transport me for England immediately; and beinge come there, he put me aboard of the vice-admiral Goodson, to whome I imparted my busines and designe, who told me, that I should goe with himselfe, and that he would further me in it; but not being landed timely enough, my intention was lost.
Wheare the defect lyes, I leave to sensure: and at last, though too late, I was brought before the right honorable the secrettary of state, who examined me on particulars, my occasions of goinge into, and cominge from these parts: to all which I gave particular answer in truth; to which he replyed, he was not therewith well satisfyed, but desired me to withdrawe untill his farther order. In obedience to which comaunds I wayted two houres and more, but beinge desired to depart by some of his honor's officers, by reason that his honor was so extraordinary busie, that he could not be well spoken withall att that present; but the vice-admiral att his departure told me, that he would move the secretary once againe in the busines; which I perceive he hath neglected. I was farther desired by severall women, whose husbands are now prisoners in Flanders, lately taken at Ostend, to write to some freinds of mine there, that if possible to get their enlargement uppon parrole, or att least wise, that they shold be civily dealt withall duringe their imprisonment. All which I performed to the uttermost of theire demaunds, and withall profer'd my selfe, if they could prevaile with the vice-admiral to procure licence, I would have gone over, and donne my uttermost endeavours to procure their inlargement. They acquainted the vice-admiral with the same; upon which he desired to speake with me, and accordingly I wayted upon him; he thanked me for my kind profer, and withall, that there was a course already taken by the commissioners of the admiralty for theire present inlardgment; and then againe I acquainted him concerninge this Hartgill Barnes, what a dangerous person he was, and one that was a particular agent and conspiratour in the last plott, and withall, that I accidentally met him in the street, and of what consequence it might be to his highnes, in case apprehended: I also acquainted him concerning this Wilmore, and withall I told him my condition att present was, that I had not the confidence to appeare before any persone of honor, but earnestly desired the vice-admirall to do it in my behalfe, and to communicate the same once againe to the secrettary of state: but I findinge him cold in the business, and not giving any countenance or credit to my words, but valuing the busines by my outward garbe, which is the cause of this addresse; for I perceive a prophet is not knowne in his owne countrey, let his integrity be never so just and good; and I perceive, that there be some, that make so much use of the serpent's subtilty, that they forget the dove's innocency: but this is my maxim, and I shall hold it the best policie, Decus & decorum est pro patria mori, was the only reason that gave saint Augustine argument to affirm, Laudari a bonis timeo, & amari a malis detestor.
Lockhart, embassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your lordship,
My last from Peronne gave an account of my intentions to return to Paris so soone as the court should beginn their journey towards Metts. The reasons inducing me to doe so were partly from necessity, having neither a stock of mony by me, nor any equipage fitt for so long a journey; for of 7 coach-horses that I caryed to Sedan, I have brought home but 4, and besyds the losse of two saddle-horses, the rest were so beatten owt, that they could not have served the turn, tho' I should have lest my coach behind: but if this had been all, I should have made some shift or other to have gott over that difficulty. The principall reason therefore, that inclyned me not to follow the court to Metts was, because I foresee, that the thoghts of prosecuting the treaty this year were totally laid asyd, whatever was pretended to the contrair; and (however things may be carried in other courts) its most true in this, that those ministers who follow it (when the interest of their masters hath not a more than common relatione to theise affairs the court then principally intends) meet with those disadvantages and slowes, that the russeness of our northern spirits is not well able to beare. I blesse God for it, I have as yet never experienced this uponmy account, but have it observed in their caryage towards others, whose patience I have no lesse admired then their indiscretion: for my part, since my being here I have all along studied so to tyme my addresses, as their interest in seeing me seemed not to be much inferior to myn of waiting upon them, and have hitherto had no cause to repent me of that way of proceeding with them. Having said this to justifie my leaving of the court at La Ferre, I shall trouble your lordshipp with ane narration of what passed since the wryting of my first from Peronne; for my last from thence contain'd only what I knew concerning the condition of the protestants, and something of the state of our English forces, with some other particulars I shall not now repeat.
The day before the court parted, I was visited by a considerable officer of the king's house, who before that tyme had payed me many civilitys, and at all opportunitys had expressed a personal kyndnesse for me, and a particular respect for the interests of my master. After some general discourse, and many insinuations of his affections to me, he took notice, that he did not find me in so good humor as I used to be in: and when I had excused my self in that, he told me, though I would not use freedom with him, yet (that I might repose the greater confidence in him) he was resolved (by what he should then impart to me) to let me see, that he durst trust me both with his life and fortune. I receiv'd his offer with due respect; and so he began his discourse, with many protestations of sidelity and affectione to his master, and then enveyhed against the cardinal's person and government with all the bitterness that could be, and said, he had not only crossed him in all his designs, but all the rest of the king's servants, who had the honesty to be unwilling to sacrifice their faithfulness to their master to his base lusts and ends; and then he told me, that the court was generally possessed with an opinion, that his eminence and I were in very bad terms, and that at my last audience, I had parted from him without having received any satisfaction at all in the business I came for; and that the friendship with England was not like to be of that continuance as was at first expected; and gave me particular hints of the heads of our treaty with them, and of their non-observance of it; and took notice of the hardshipps the English forces had suffered by their so long want of pay, which might easily have been prevented, if the cardinal had really intended it. After all these invectives, he cryed up the prince of Conde as much as he had the other down, and told how much his return would satisfie the nobility, and all other persons of interest and honor in France; and that nothing could more contribute to the greatnesse and happynesse of his majestie, nor to the advantage of his allyes; for if he had the trust of affairs, all treaties would be kept, and the performance of promises would be both actively and honorably endeavoured; and, in conclusion, begged a protection in England, if by the cardinal's jealousies of him he should be forced to retire himself from this court; and in the mean time promised me a faithfull account of all that he could learn at court, for which he demanded many precautions of my secresy. By several circumstances in his discourse and carriage I observed that, which made me jealous his designs and pretensions did not agree, and had tyme from the lenth of it to consider it would not be safe to swallow the first baite; and so replied, as he or others could get no advantage of me, if he were sent to pump me, which I am apt to believe he was, by the sequel of the cardinal's caryage to me. However, I assured him his secret should be safely lodged in my breast, and should never meet him to his disadvantage; but I could not jump with his oppinion of the cardinal, whose caryage (in reference to any businesse I had to do with him) had been more honorable than he had represented it. I had narrowly enoss observed him in these particulars, but had not made it my businesse to enquyer after things, and therefore it might be possible, that what he had said concerning himself and others might be true; offer'd him my service in any thing relaited to himself, and advised him not to imbarque himself in any of the prince's interests, who was a malhurose person; and to enter in his bottom, would be but to sink with him. I accepted of his offer of communicatting to me what he should learn at court, and assured him not only of my endeavors for his protection (if upon that single account he should bring himself in any trouble) but of a reward befitting my master's bounty, and the services he should do; and said, I had received his last proposition with the greater freedome, because he had often protected to me his zeale for the good correspondence betwixt England and France; and I protested to him, upon my honor, I should make no other use of what he should impart to me, then to make it subserve to those just ends of keeping up and encreasing the frendshipp betwixt the nations. At parting he thank'd me for my counsell, and begg'd my secresy, and said, he could see me no more, nor durst he write to me from Metts; but at his return he should give mean account of all things that passed. That evening I sent for mr. Du Bose, and desyer'd him to tell the cardinal, that the court being to remove to Le Ferre to-morrow, I desyred the honor to kiss his hand that night, or in the morning, and promised I should not trouble him in any businesse further then to receive his commands for Paris, whither he had given me leave to go. He brouht me back word, that his eminence must needs speak with me in some things at lenth; and because he had no time to do it then, he earnestly desired my going back to Le Ferre; which I promised to do, and waited upon his eminence next morning. After my arryval there, he shew'd me more then usuall respect at my reception; and when I was sett, I told him, as in jeast, that by the extraordinary honor he had done me at my reception, he had had the goodnesse to give a check to those reports (some of my master's enemies, and I believed none of his friends had spread abroad) of my being in his disgrace. He replyed, that he had heard a little of these foolish rumours; but as the story went, he was rather threattned with being in mine than I in his; and said, the reports of fools were not to be taken notice of by wise men, and so rose up and embraced me, and gave me many compliments upon his highnes's account, and some upon my own; and after that, begg'd that I would represent the state of affairs in relation to Dunkirk as favourably as I could; and that I would use my interest with your lordship for your mediation for him, and the conservation of his esteem with his highnes; renewed all his old excuses for what had passed, and his promises for making amends for all in the next spring, and conjured me to beleeve his sincerity in these things; and then told me the reasons, that moved their going to Metts. They were earnestly pressed in it by all the protestant electors, and some of the ecclesiastick: a considerable part of the army is to march up after them. And when I asked him, what hopes, he had of success in that business? he replyed, his fears were greater than his hopes, if the business shall come to a present election; and to be free with me, his thoghts were busied with nothing at present save how to divert and delay the election: and theirefore he resolves to listen to any propositions, that shall be made for a general peace; and upon that account to amuse and gain tyme: and if he can carry the deferring of the election, till the articles for a general peace may be debated, and so get the diet adjourned for some tyme, he will look upon the businesse as half gain'd. He will not hearken to any overtures for a general peace, except upon the forementioned condition; which if granted, the first thing he will urge shall be ane invitation to all the princes and states of Europe to send their ambassadors to such common place as shall be aggreed upon. His majesty also will send no ambassador to any such meeting, except his highness's ambassador be received with that honor as was given, to those of the former kings of England. In conclusion, he forbidd me to be allarumed with any reports I should heare touching that affaire, since he had so freely precautioned me in it, and had not reserved from me any of his resolutions in that businesse.
Mr. De Servient, the Venetian ambassador, and the nuntio begun their journey yesterday for Metts; the businesse of the two last is to mediate for the general peace, for which its believed the first has favorable inclinations. By the next post I shall say something further touching their intentions, and his eminencie's interests in that businesse.
My lord, I received yesterday the sad news of my lord Richard's dangerous fall, with resentments sutable to what I owe both to his highness and his lordshipp. It shall be our earnest and dayly prayer here, both in privatt and publick, that the Lord may enable their highnesses to beare so great and sensible an affliction with that patience and submission to his will, which they have been accustomed to in their other straitts; and that he will preserve my lord Richard's life; and in restoring of him, give a new token of his love both to their highnesses and the nations.
The businesse of the merchants, and that of the provisions, I shall lykwyse remit to the next; and must begg your lordship's beliefe, that I am sensible of your goodnesse to me and mine in a higher measure then can be expressed by,
Bordeaux, the French embassador in England, to secretary Thurloe.
Je vous prie, de vouloir me faire obtenir de son altesse serenissime un passeport pour ma provision de vin: que je fais venir: ce sera une grace, qui augmentera le nombre de celles, que j'ay desja reçeues vostre civilité.
Je vous supplie aussy de vouloir appuyer d'une recommendation aupres du conseil d'Irlande la pretension d'un gentilhomme du mesme pais, dont le fils est auprès du moy. Le memoire, qu'il m'a fait voir, me la represente si juste, que je n'ay pas fait scrupule de vous demander cette faveur, dont je vous seray très-redevable. Je remets à mon secretaire à vous parler de quelques autres demandes, quine recoivent pas plus de difficulté; & espere, que vous ne les aures pas desagreables. Je l'ay charge de vous communiquer une lettre, qui m'est escritte de Calais, où vous pourrez voire l'etat de nostre armée. Si son altesse desiroit envoyer quelque ordre par moy, il vous plaira, monsieur, de me la faire sçavoir, & aussy d'estre persuadé, que je suis,
Sir John Reynolds to general Montagu.
Having received commands from his highness of Turenne to give notice to the general of his highness's fleet riding in the Downs, of his intended approach to the sea-side, I desire you will be pleased to make so great a diversion as is possible, by approaching with the fleet upon the coast, which my lord protector hath promised to the king and cardinal on your behalf. Likewise that you bring so good stores either at the same time, or immemediately to follow, as may (if occasion require) afford a fortnight's bread to 15000 foot; also a supply of ammunition will be expected from you, some cannon of the greatest size, and mortar-pieces. If these things be not in readiness, I beseech your lordship to give speedy intimation to his highness, or to the secretary of state, that order may be given for these supplies, viz. bread (if necessity require) great cannon, ammunition, mortar-pieces, and some pioneers tools. Although the success of this attempt may be doubtful, yet it is certainly better to provide for the army in this manner than to lose a design through want thereof, of so great advantage to both nations. I humbly take leave to recommend once more your speedy approach to the sea-side, where within three days I intend to kiss your hands, and remain
Mareschal Turenne is of opinion, that you cannot correspond with him by a signal of cannon, because the enemy from Dunkirk, Mardyke, and Winoxbergh, will certainly shoot very much upon our approach, at which we hope you will be sending some men on shore.
Sir John Reynolds to the protector.
May it please your highnes,
Being at length marching to the sea-side with the army of France under the command of marshall Turenne, I presume to present unto your highnes an account of our intended march thither; and if the Lord please to give successe to our attempt, to force our passage over the river Culme, which is guarded by the enemye's greatest strength, I doe not then question the progresse of that designe, which your highnes principally intended in sending your forces hither. I have given notice to the generall of your highnes's fleete, and do hope he will make some divertisement by his approch with all your highnes's ships upon the coast of Flanders. I have also given an account of the expectation of marshall Turenne to receive a supply of ammunition, and great artillery, with your highnes's greatest mortar-pieces, if he can besiege any place on the sea-coast. Likewise, that the French army will unwillingly hazard the losse of correspondency with France during the siege, if there be not some supply of bisket for their use on board the fleet of your highnes, which will not be made use of, unless necessity requireth. Wel knowing your highnes to be best able to judge of your affaires, I shall not presume to offer any reasons for your highnes's speedy orders in these particulars, or mention with how great difficulty this designe is advanced thus farre, and how prejudiciall it will prove to your highnes's interest, if encouragement be not given thereunto by your highnes; but humbly begging your highnes's pardon for my too little serviceablenes unto your highnes, unto whose bounty I ow whatsoever I am, I humbly pray for your highnes long life and happy reigne, and remaine
The Danish resident to the states-general.
H. and M. lords,
The resident of his majesty of Denmark, &c. having seen, that upon the endeavours, which he hath used by his iterative memorials, which he hath delivered to their H. and M. L. there hath not any further dispositions appear'd for the payment of the remaining subsidy of the year 1654, he doth find himself necessitated by an order sent unto him by the last post, to remember once more your H. and M. L. of the said subsidy, and friendly to entreat you, that without any further delay you will be pleased to give order for the payment of the said subsidy due so long since, in regard the same is not only seriously recommended to the said resident, but also by their excellencies the lords rycksraden to your H. and M. L. embassadors extraordinary in Denmark, the same being undertaken by them to be signified unto your H. and M. L. Wherefore the said resident doth earnestly insist, that your H. and M. L. be pleased to consider of their stipulations and promises made; and that the said monies at this conjuncture of time will be very welcome; and therefore their H. and M. L. are once more earnestly entreated to take care for the payment of the said monies out of hand, which the said resident is expecting from their H. and M. L. usual punctual proceeding.
From Boreell the Dutch embassador at Paris.
Formerly I did often advise, that the lord duke of Vendosme, as admiral of France, had an intention to make all foreign vessels lading in any French harbour, and failing to another French port, to pay two French crowns upon every tun of the vessel; and now he seeming to be in earnest, and resolved to put it in practice, I thought good to advise you once more of it; for the Netherland skippers out of Holland and Zealand, which frequent the French navigation, do gain most money by such navigations from one port to another.
By this last seizure in France in April last, many Netherland factors and merchants have left the sea-towns of this kingdom, and the commerce and navigation is no ways so much as formerly. There is every where in this nation abundance of brandy and old wines, which find no buyers; so that this nation is very sensible of the said hard proceedings.
Mr. S. Disbrowe, one of the council of Scotland, to secretary Thurloe.
Honorable and much honored,
Att my coming hither I hoped to have found the comission sent downe for administring the oath to the councill here; which being still delayed, occasioned these lines, to put you in mind, that the councill cannot warrantably nor safely doe any thing, though of never so great necessity and concernment.
I remember also att my taking leave, you were pleased to show me a draught of a lease, which mr. Gelaspy desired to have passed by way of coroboration of his former graunt. What need there was thereof, I could not readily conceave; but since upon examination of the matter, I find that the commissioners of exchequer here did make some scruple of passing the aforesaid gift, untill they had acquainted his highness with what he had thereby given away (viz.) one of the greatest superiorityes in Scotland: and though the rent of those lands and kirks had not been considerable, yet the giving away the superiority, and thereby the dependance of many considerable gentlemen and others, that are owners of those lands, that these instead of acknowledging his highnes as their lord and superior, shall now acknowledge the colledge of Glasgow, which kind of interest hath bin, and yet is much accounted of in Scotland, and in my poor opinion should not easily be parted with, especially by a cheyse magistrate. But the commissioners of the exchequer aforesaid was informed, that the lands in that gift disposed would shortly be worth near 2000 l. sterling per ann. Upon the considerations aforesaid, the commissioners inserted a clause in that graunt, that the colledge should not renew leases, or make any contract for or concerning those lands, but should first acquaint two or more of the commissioners of his highnes's exchequer therewith, and have theyr consent. For the avoiding the force of which clause, I conceave this lease for coroboration may bee. I thought it my part to inform of these thinges, that so for time to come, if not in this case, such inconveniences may be avoyded, namely, that under the pretence of having 200 l. none may get in theyr power 20000; but especially one, which is most considerable, that his highnes should not lose that litle interest, by having those lands that hold of him as imediate superior, be given to any person or body of people whatsoever: and I should think it sufficient for any men of what condition or quality soever, that they have such rents as his highnes thinkes meet to give them: but for vassalls (as they are called here, tenants in England) that they should hold theyr lands only from his highnes, and acknowledge theyr antient lord as formerly. I shall only take the boldness to add, that in gifts of like nature, if you think meet to refer the examination of them for time to come to the councill here, you may then have the condition and state of them laid open before you, and his highnes will knowe what he graunts. I hope you will pardon my length and playness; it is because I would not have his highnes nor yourself abused. I should have told you also, that the sugestions against that comission I left with you at my coming away, ariseth cheyfly from the feares of having some of those lands or rents reduced to the right place, with some freynd, kin or ally injoyeth: for which I could and would have added some reasons, that induce me so to think, but that I am too tedious allready, and therefore shall only say, sir, I am
Commissioner Pells to the states-general.
It is supposed, that prince Radzevil is to officiate as vicarius in the government in Prussia, whilst the duke shall be absent, who is going towards the Marke-Brandenburg, and further up into Germany, to be at the election.
De Thou, the French embassador in Holland, to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.
I am glad to see, that my lord Nieuport doth execute the orders, which were sent him from hence, to entertain a correspondency with your lordship, which is necessary between two states, that are friends. I desire you will let me know from time to time how he proceeds, and who the express is, that is to come from the lord protector hither, and how I am to behave with him. My lord Nieuport in his last writ to his superiors, that on the side of Spain some propositions of peace had been made to the protector; but that the affairs were at distance enough through the pretences of one of the parties. He writes also, that general Montagu was to depart very speedily, to observe the motion of the lord admiral Opdam; but it is from you, that we expect the confirmation of this news. From Frankfort I have nothing; only at Brussels they seem to be troubled at the reception, which was given to our lord plenipotentiaries, from whom I have received as yet but one letter.
Rosewinge to Petkum.
I did not write to you by the last post. Yesterday I made overture to the lords of this state of my commission, in a large memorial concerning two points; that this state will be pleased to assist his majesty our king and master with a considerable sum of money at interest upon good security; and the other is, that they will be pleased to suspend yet a while the ratification of the treaty of Elbing.
Our king is returned to Funen, after he had given order for all things necessary for the defence of fort Frederickodd. Our men behave themselves couragiously against the enemy in Schonen, killing many of them in the skirmishes. The Swedes fly whensoever they meet with our men. Our fleet hath taken a great Swedish ship laden with copper. Cracow is for certain delivered up to the Polanders.
The Swedish resident to the states-general.
The resident of Sweden understanding, that the Danish minister, by several srivolous reasons, doth go about to divert their H. and M. L. from the old and wellgrounded confidence and alliance lately made between his royal majesty his gracious lord, and their H. and M. L. he doth therefore find himself obliged to declare upon the same: As first it is said, that the interests between their H. and M. L. and the crown of Denmark are inseparable, and that his majesty of Sweden doth use great endeavours to separate their H. and M. L. from Denmark: the contrary of this I make no doubt is best known to their H. and M. L. who since the treaty of the year 1644, have been constantly, and without intermission, necessitated to complain to and of Denmark, about the usurped, and without all manner of right, the exactions and vexations used in the Sound in their tolls, raising the same at pleasure. This doth appear by the several embassies of their H. and M. L. besides the constant endeavours used by the ordinary ministers in Sweden; yea, there hath been proceeded so far, since that no respect would be given to the remonstrances, and also to the promises, which followed thereupon, their H. and M. L. were necessitated, by a considerable embassy in the year 1640, to engage the crown of Sweden by all imaginable reasons in a treaty directed against Denmark. And in the year 1645, Denmark was brought to reason by force of arms; and their H. and M. L. for a firmer bond of the treaty, and to the Denmark to observe the same, remained guarranty of the said treaty, made by a solemn treaty at Suderocra in the year 1645, between the crown of Sweden and their H. and M. L. Such hath always been the Danish inclination to their H. and M. L. which hath always appeared by the violence and insupportable proceedings of the Danes against this state, from that time, that this state had war with Spain; yea, from the time of the Ers-treaty, which the Danes say to have made with Spain, and therein to acknowlege no state. That which Denmark hath begun now is known to their H. and M. L. and the whole world; the same is not done in respect of the freedom of the Holland commerce (for Denmark hath always said not to have to do with the commerce, as having few merchant ships, and only doth trouble themselves to get in their toll in the Sound without reflection from whom they took it) but Denmark supposing now to have the way open for the recovering of what they agreed for the securing of the treaty as abovementioned, by this state's mediation in the year 1645: for the observation and preservation of which said treaty, their H. and M. L. did then oblige themselves at Suderocra; and the same now lately confirmed on the 1/11th of September 1656, by a special treaty, whereby not only provision is made for the city of Dantzick, but for all what their H. and M. L. embassadors extraordinary had in their instructions given them; yea such, that their H. and M. L. and especially also the lord Slingelandt at his return hither, as having accomplished all their instructions in omnibus & per omnia, were pleased to give them solemn thanks; and consequently they were writ unto to get his majesty's act of ratification with all speed, to be sent over to his majesty's agents here, to be exchanged against that of this state, as ought to have been done, according to the express text of the treaty, within the four first months.
It is strange, that Denmark will say, that their H. and M. L. have been his instigators against Sweden: the more reason hath his majesty of Sweden firmly to believe, that of the Danes, as is now publickly desired by them, having hindred the exchange of the said ratification, to which this state is precisely obliged, and already produced by several of the princes; his majesty of Sweden hath now great cause to presume, that Denmark having now shot away all his arrows out of his quiver, the ratification will be perfected.
Denmark doth judge, that it will be very heavy and chargeable for them to obtain what they aim at (namely, to recover what was granted by them in the year 1645, for the securing of the then made treaty) unless they be supplied with speedy and efficacious assistance of their H. and M. L. which will properly signify, that unless their H. and M. L. will break their own words, promise, hands, seal, and treaties, by which it is agreed to assist his majesty of Sweden, if assaulted, as hath now clearly happened, and as yet there is one of the chiefest forts in the dukedom of Bremen held by the Danes. It is seriously a very sine Danish policy, not only to be covenant-breakers themselves, but to induce others likewise to the same injustice.
It is very observable likewise, that they should make their danger to be very considerable, and yet underhand they speak of great things and power; concealing or not looking into the chief danger, namely, that they by these their designs do go about to put the Roman kingdom, and all Germany, into such a predicament, as it was in the time of Christianus IV. of Denmark, who begun a war very unfortunately in the year 1629, and waging of it with worse success in the year 1629, he was wholly subdued; so that king Gustavus of Sweden, of happy memory, and his successor queen Christina, being forced to undertake the business, with more prosperity, did very happily manage the same as well for the good of Denmark, of their H. and M. L. as of the whole protestant cause.
The Danish generosity in the late English war did cost their H. and M. L. dear enough. It is best known to their H. and M. L. whether the proceed of the 22 English hemp-ships hath been made good unto them by Denmark, and whether the Danes did before ever desire to join one of their men of war with the fleet of their H. and M. L. although equipp'd at the charge of this state.
Queen Christina, by the underwritten resident in his audience of the 17th of April 1653, offering unto their H. and M. L. her well-intended mediation, and viam concordiœ in the English war, which, according to the treaty, was to proceed, and their H. and M. L. giving a dilatory answer to the same upon the 28th of the same month, and remitting her majesty to the parliament of England, she in the mean time did so manage the business there, that their H. and M. L. had peace with England.
The considerable sum, which Denmark doth desire of their H. and M. L. would be best found in their own treasury, as having drawn since the Ers-treaty a thousand and more millions from the good inhabitants of these provinces by their usurped exactions in the Sound, which have been always looked upon by this state as a disturbance in the commerce, and a non-observing of the agreements; whereof their H. and M. L. have yet a lively proof, in the re-measuring of the ships to Norway, as also the pretended debarring of all navigation to the Swedish harbours; and they will ground their present war and arms upon what his majesty did only endeavour to do before Dantzick, and about which a year since satisfaction hath been given, as well to their H. and M. L. as to the said city. Finally, the Danes endeavour'd to destroy the Elbing-treaty, or that which is as much, endeavouring to keep the same from being ratified; wherein they do again seek to be bespatter others with the same crime, which they are guilty of, in not observing the treaties. Their H. and M. L. have sufficiently often perceived to their own prejudice, how common this is with Denmark; but now justice doth blush, and doth force them to acknowledge, that some of the provinces having already given their votes for the exchange of the ratification, and therein consented, the rest being also inclined to do the same, the effect of consequence of which votes and inclinations the said resident is expecting with the first; and in the mean time doth refer himself to his former memorandums, all tending thereunto, to desire of them in a friendly way the accomplishment and observation of all what they are obliged unto by virtue of the former treaties, and for a continuation of a good and neighbourly amity.
Consul Maynard to secretary Thurloe.
Since my laste to your honour, I received two letters from Cadix; in both I am write, notwithstandinge the Spaniard makes all heaste possible to sett out the fleete from thence, it will be towards the end of December before they can be reaydy to saile: they muste of necessity sende a supply to the West-India, else all that country will be in an insurrection. The rysinge of seaven thousand clergy-men against the vice-kinge of Perru is confirmed. The common people in Spaine all cry out, and heartylly pray for a peace with Ingland. There is noe allteration in the fleete since my laste; they all ryde in the bay of Cadix, unlesse 2 shipes, which came lately to Taviera in the Algarvez to water. Businesse is better carried here then formerly against the Spaniard. Johany Mendez, the Por tugal generall, is in the field with thirteen thousand horse and foote; but 'tis supposed, more to shew the Spaniard they are in a condition to fight him, if he approach this kingdome, then to attempt any thinge on the enymy till the Spring, tho' it be given out, that he will besiedge Olyvenza. The Spanish army in the north of Portugall lye still in theire trenches, on this side the river Minho; but the new generall hath ordered his businesse so, that none stirr out of thire hold, but presently they are either killed or taken prisoners. Things goe on yett fairely with the French ambasador, that aryved lately at this courte; he hath promised the continuance of a warr with the Spaniard, in Catalonia and other places, to dyvert them from this kingdome, which pleases these people: and the kinge of Portugall hath promised to contribute a large sume, to defray the charges of that warr, which contents the ambasador. So all things will doe well before the money come to be paide, when I fear the French will finde the Portuguez to be more ready to promise than to complye with his word. All the talke here among the greate ons is a league betwixt the Inglish, Swede, French, and Portuguez. The Lord ever blesse and prosper your honour, are the hearty prayers of
General Mountagu to secretary Thurloe.
Your's of the 31th of August I received the 1st instant, and have forbore writinge againe, supposeing to have received more letters from London; but since none have come to this houre, I shall send you what I have, which is scarce worth writinge. On wedensday last mr. Meaddowes was with mee, and I had a shipp readye for him, which attended the receivinge him on board at Dover, whence I thinke he sett saile on friday last. I have received notice, that the shipp I formerly mentioned to have come into St. Maloes with silver, doth unlade there, and returne it into Flanders by bills of exchange; they had 12 in the hundred of the Spaniard for transportinge it. The shipp, they say, was worth 170 thousand pound sterlinge in plate, and as much more (neare) in other commodityes. The 6 Dutch shipps, expected from the Indies, are arrived att Amsterdam with 3 millions of plate (Spanish). I heare the Dutch have bargained for 15 in the hundred, to fetch away the plate from the Canaries. There is a very rich shipp expected thence into Diepe; she is an Hamburger. Here is the Lyon come from Jamaica, whose intelligence I suppose you have before this comes to you. Captain Compton was sett on shoare att Diepe, as you desired, from whence I heare, that mr. Morland is married: I will send for him over this week. Your letter sayes, you wish I were in capacitye to follow Opdam: I confesse, the cause of your circumspection that way is very just; and I wish too, that there were a supply of ships on theire way for that service, and that some of the other were resolved, who are every way in greate necessitye thereof: but (if it were convenient to speake of my person here) I thinke, if I should goe soe longe or hott a voyage, I should not live to returne: and truely, I have very hardly kept up in health here about the last weeke; for 3 or 10 dayes I was not well; though I thanke God now I am much better. I heartily congratulate with you the hopefull recoverye of my lord Richard; and thus I remaine
General Mountagu to secretary Thurloe.
Just now I have received the enclosed, which beinge of extraordinarye hast, I send it by itselfe, though I have written a pacquett, for which I am unwillinge it should stay. I have another from sir John Reynolds, which desires mee imediately to saile to the coast of Flanders. I have called the commanders on board; and the result of our meetinge I will forthwith send you: in the meane tyme the commissioners of the admiraltye can advise you of our condition, and you may accordingly direct