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 (1 of 5)
A letter of intelligence from Blank Marshall.
Just now I have well received yours, and had only time to look it over. As for what the royal party says, you will find truth in short time; but for the number, and where they ship, is not yet known. All the preparations of ships is at Ostend, which will be great and small about 24. But we expect both men and shipping from Holland; but the number of either not known to any but king and council; neither is there any appearance for Ch. Stewart, but his five poor regiments, which will not be 1200, but now have received all one month's pay; and as for Ch. Stewart's own regiment, they have received cloaths, shoes, stockings, and shirts. Ch. Stewart is now in Brussels. The duke of York and the duke of Glocester are gone with their sister to Breda. The duke of York will suddenly return. Ormond is not yet returned. The leading men with Ch. Stewart are Bristol, Hyde, and Marcine, who is made knight of the garter. He is a great soldier, and a rich man: he has two regiments of his own, and is to be lieutenant-general to the duke of York. Gerrard is daily expected. We have nothing from Middleton. Langdale is great with Ch. Stewart. You had need to be watchful, for our business is kept close; and I find great confidence in the great ones, of success. Ch. Stewart has from several places prophecies, that say, that this is the time.
Extract out of the resolutions of the court of Gelderland.
There being read in the council of the assembly of the lords commissioners out of their respective quarters and head cities, Nimeguen, Zutphen, and Arnhem, the letter, which the lords states of Holland and West-friezland were pleased to write to the lords states of this dukedom and earldom of the 23d of January last, about the vacant charge of the field-marshalship of these United Netherlands: after examination had, it is found and judged, that the said letter doth contain several positions to alienate from the union, grounds, and fundamentals of the common government; and likewise not conformable to the proper declaration of their noble great lordships made in the great assembly in the Hague. Wherefore the lords commissioners of this state in the assembly of their H. and M. L. are to induce the lords of Holland with all requisite and inducive reasons thereunto; and also, they are with earnestness to insist, that they will desist from their former and other provinces prejudicial maxims, and keep to the ancient form of government, and to the observation and practice thereof: but if so be beyond expectation the said states of Holland be not to be moved, nor to be diverted from them, the said lords commissioners are to take perfect notice of their behaviour at the generality, and make full report at the next assembly of this province, that then by their noble great lordships the motives of the province of Holland may be punctually answered with solid reasons.
An intercepted letter.
I Have given mr. Conyers an account of the business you acquainted me with. He bid me assure you, he would give you all the encouragement and assistance you would desire of him. If you please to see him in your journey to Paris, and propose to him what is necessary for the effecting of that business you design, you shall not fail to receive all the satisfaction you desire; or if seeing him will not be convenient for you, do but otherwise contrive, how to inform him perfectly of those particulars, in which you suppose his assistance will be required, and you will be satisfied to the full. I am yet uncertain, when I shall return. I fear my stay here will be longer than I imagined, when we parted: which is at present all I have to acquaint you with, but that your friends here are all very well, and at your service. Adieu, dear sir, in hast. I am,
Your most humble servant,
An intercepted letter.
Mr. Conyers is not so well satisfied with that account you sent by mr. Roberts, but that he thinks it absolutely necessary to come over as soon as possibly he can, and bring also with him the fine cloth he gave him order to buy. Mr. Conyers doth not think it fit, that his factor, mr. Martin, should stir: therefore expects, that mr. Plant (according to promise) should bring over the cloth, and then he will not fail to sign the account. The horse-courser, that lately came hither, will at his return acquaint you with what concerns the doctor, and the uncertainty of my journey. All your friends here are very well, and at your service; amongst the rest, old mr. Adams, who desires you would speak to mr. Plant to bring over the gem from J. St.
Resident Sasburgh to the states-general.
H. and M. lords,
They write from Madrid of the 20th of February, that not only those of the church, but also a good many of the great persons, had freely advanced a considerable sum of money into the king's finances, to continue the war against England; but those of the church here cannot yet be disposed in the least to present their charitable hand towards it.
Here is also advice out of England, that general Blake hath lost four of his best frigats by storm. I cannot omit yet again to advise your H. and M. L. how certainly it is reported here, that the protector will soon assume another title, within a month, as the words of the letter run. They write from Paris, that the hope of peace between the two crowns is quite extinguished, in regard it is resolved in France not to admit the prince of Condé into any treaty; and that the said prince thereupon hath made a new condition with the king of Spain, whereby the king of Spain promiseth to protect the said prince, till he be fully restored. A great person advised me yesterday, that the cardinal Mazarin is deceased.
Corn. Burough to the commissioners of the admiralty and navy.
If the opportunity, that now offers, give these a safe conveyance to your honors, you may be thereby informed, that our stores here (as to provisions) are hastening to an end; and that your honors may be fully satisfied, I have made bold to trouble you at present. On the 6th of May arrived Convertine, Matthias, and Beare; and how farr we were by them enabled, gave account to your honors by the Great Charity, who departed in June following; since which we have had but small recruites, except by the Hopewell, Helpewell, Recovery, and Two Sisters, whereof not one answered their bill of lading. Their defects were made good by the Church, that came from New-England, and by two ketches, merchantmen, which came also from thence, whose provisions were here bought to make up what the merchantmen wanted. What the Church brought, not only by the captain from New-England, but by admiral Goodson, an account hath been given. What came by the four merchant-men, the receipts and certificates, given here to them, fully mentions, which I suppose will arrive in England long before these can come to your honors perusall. What the two ketches supplied us with, the inclosed gives an account of: so that if the time, toghether with the nombers of men, both of fleete and army, considering also, that the eight shipps that were lately sent from hence, were victualled with two months full allowance, there remaines no wonder that our stores are so nigh a period. In the accounts sent home by the Hope, mention was made of five weeks bread, and 14 weeks other provisions for the army. The want of bread caused the enlargment of other provisions, which hastned their expendition. We are in daily expectation of shipps; and our hopes are much strengthend by the hitherto continued care, that hath been taken of us at this distance: and if casualty should deny us what your honors care intends for us, there is no difficulty or inconvenience whatsoever but will be very chearfully encountred, without the least grudge or repining, every ingenious man considering how much the state hath donn, and how little hath been donn by us. Your honours will receive by first state shipp that comes from hence, my account full audited; which I doubt not but will give very full satisfaction. I humbly beg my former desires seconded by the generall may be answered, not only to my pay, but as to my stay here. I waite for your honors pleasure therein, and meane while shall endeavour to approve myselfe
Jamaica, Cagway March 2. 1656.
Mr Bradshaw, resident at Hamburg, to secretary Thurloe.
The inclosed papers present the state of affaires, as they seeme now to stand in theise parts. Most conclude the K. of D. hath allready made an end of his intended warre, and that he will proceede noe further therein. I am sorry that Sundercombe made not a more through discoverie of the plot, e're he made away himselfe; but I trust soe muche is knowne, as will be a meanes effectually to disapoint them. It seemes that Massie (whoe was soe courted and feasted here by the malignants in the comp. especially the present deputie Watson) is one of the cheese agents employed by Ch. St. to invade England with those Flanders forces the next month, if he can. The goodness of God is very remarkable in detecting and frustratinge the restlesse attempts of your enemies.
I hope by the next post your honour will please to satisfy my request in my letter of the
10th of the last month, which I heare was come on. I remayne,
Your honour's verie humble servant,
The Swedish resident sent to me this day, desiringe to knowe, if the envoy were come, which he faith he had notice from his correspondent in London, was to be sent from his highnesse to the king of Denmarke, and that your honor had writ to me of him; but I have heard of noe such matter yet.
To Nieuport, the Dutch embassador in England.
Since my last of the 6th current I am informed, that the king of Denmark's levies do go on amain both by sea and land; and the Swedish resident in that court doth all that he can to enter upon a treaty with his majesty, which he is still declining; and in Holland the Swedish resident is labouring to get the treaty of Elbing ratified. We have nothing considerable this week out of Poland or Prussia. The bishop of Ermeland is expected again at Dantzick. It is hoped, he will bring something, which may tend for an accommodation between the king of Poland and the duke of Brandenburgh. The Scotch soldiers in the Swedish service do run away daily, and are afterwards entertained and received by one general Middleton, who is employed by the king of Scotland to raise men in those parts.
A letter of intelligence to resident Bradshaw.
Right honourable sir,
Since my last of the 9th instant, there is no other newes to mention at present but the continuation of the former. The pulling downe of the wall at the river Weissel is done by the Swedes, but the effect of it is as yet of no great consideration, because the water is very low at present, and therefore it can doe no great harme to the Dantzickers, but in the spring, when the waters are rising, it will doe more harme then now. The Dantzickers sent by the king's trompeter to his majesty of S. a negative answer, that they will not accommodate them. The king of S. is returned from the Heufft to Marienburg, where he is to remaine yet a while. Of his going for to meete Ragotzy, all is silent. It seemes he is not so neare yet come into Poland, and he will hardly be stirring before the graffe be come out, for now nothing is to be found in Poland for horses. As for the Cossakes, there is some that doubt of their coming, or that they will offer to breake the liga with the Muscoviter. The Tartars have threatned, if the Cossakes doe joyne with the Swedes, to fall into Ukraine, and to ruine all their contryes. The Swedish army lyes in their quarters, and the Polish army is farr off from Prussia. Since the king of Poland, with Charnetzky, is gone from Dantzick, there is little or nothing to be heard of. If he keepes a parliament or not, all is silent. The summer may be will bring forth smart actions betwixt the Swedes and the Poles, the rivers being at present free from the ice. The Dantzickers will not be able to be so insolent to doe mischiefe to the contry people as before. Of the king of Denmarke his armeing, there is heere great apprehension; and no doubt but it will be to divert the king of Sweden. It is reported, that the Hollanders will joyne with the Danes against the Swedes, and that the Dane hath bought divers great shipps from the Hollanders. There must be some such like thing, because the Dutch embassadors are now in no great esteeme at the king of S. and ere long there will bee more heard of shortly. This being all at present, I subscribe,
Yours at command.
The Danish resident to the states-general.
H. and M. lords,
In regard his royal majesty of Denmark and Norway, &c. hath commanded me to remonstrrate unto you several abuses, which have been a long while committed and practised by those skippers, who trade to Norway, being directly contrary to the treaty concluded between his majesty and your H. and M. L. on the 12th of February 1647, and I did declare and deduce the same to your H. and M. L. the 15th of May 1655, in a large memorandum; and at last, after that this business was duly examined by commissioners appointed for that purpose, it was found to be such, that the abuses remonstrated therein did consist in reason and equity; and according to exigence and equity on the 21st of December 1655, it was thought fit and concluded by a provisional advice, by their noble great lordships of Holland and West-Friezland, that the said faults and abuses practised by the Netherland skippers trading to Norway, should be corrected and mended, by remeasuring, new measure, letters, and marks, which was further approved of in your H. and M. L. assembly. That thereupon a placart was drawn up and published here in the Hague on the 7th of March 1656; whereby his majesty in the said year 1656, did cause several palpable saults to be corrected by his toll master Zuydenfield in Norway; and his majesty would gladly have seen, that your H. and M. L. had been pleased to have constituted somebody in the behalf of your H. and M. L. according to the contents of the treaty, as also the contents of the said treaty-placcart, to be present, whilst such remeasuring doth happen. But his said majesty being very sorry to understand, that no body was authorized and appointed in the behalf of your H. and M. L. for the observing of the same, he could not to his great damage permit any alteration nor suspense in that, which was directly contrary to the true meaning of the treaty, and the preservation of his interest, without being necessitated to take the work in hand, (which was come so far on both sides, that the remeasuring ought to be done) especially since that his said majesty was informed by those, who undertook the remeasuring in the last year, of the clear frauds found therein, he can do no less than stick to his right, and what is due unto him, and in all equity and justice (according to the express meaning in the treaty) is grounded, believing that your H. and M. L. will also consider how reasonably and civilly the said treaty is composed, and that the same is found to be made and concluded more for the advantage of the inhabitants of these United Provinces, than the profit of his majesty; and therefore all things ought to be truly examined and considered, that so his majesty may not be shortned of his due. And that your H. and M. L. should not think that his majesty doth seek or desire any thing else hereunder, than what doth agree with that right and equity, which doth belong unto him, he hath commanded and authorized me to negotiate about this business, and to conclude the same finally: and to prevent the complaints of any skipper of being injured in the measuring of his ship, the same shall be examined; and if it be found to be so, the same shall be presently altered and remedied at the charge of his majesty; but if so be he complaineth without a cause, then he is to pay all the charges, which the toll-master is at to remeasure his ship. And if so be your H. and M. L. do scruple at the measuring, which is used in Norway by order of his majesty, or to avoid further disputes, that they should think fit to make a new charter, whereby the ships built after the new fabrick from time to time could be duly measured, marked, and taxed, his said majesty hath authorized me to agree about it as soon as may be, in regard his majesty is of an opinion, that the same cannot be delayed nor denied, since there is nothing desired, but what in equity is required on both sides. Wherefore I doubt not, but the same will be ripely considered by your H. and M. L. and that you will maintain as such near allies to his majesty the treaty inviolably. Wherefore I expect a favourable resolution, and I wish unto your H. and M. L. a prosperous and happy government, remaining, &c.
General Monck to secretary Thurloe.
I Received your letter, for which I returne you many thankes; and truly I am consident your letter will give the officers heere a great deale of satisfaction; and I hope the temper of them is such, that they will bee of a quiett spirit, waiting uppon the providence of God, what shall become of the businesse. I shall desire you, when you heare any further newes of Charles Stuart, that is considerable, that you will bee pleased to acquaint mee with itt. For newes here att present, wee have none: all thinges are quiett and well; but truly the want of one councellor to make uppe a quorum breedes a huge distraction in our businesse, and the soldiers were never soe far behind in pay since I came to Scotland, as they are now; which is nott well, for wee want both the sesse of the country, and a good summe of monie, which is due from the excise; besides the excise businesse is in noe good condition for want of itt, and as yett I heare nott of one of them uppon the way, which I the more wonder att, that the businesse of a whole country should fall into such a disorder for want of the presence of one of them, which I know may doe more service heere then they can doe any where else; soe desiring the Almighty to blesse you in all your proceedinges, I take leave, and remayne
Dalkeith 3d March 1656–7.
Secretary Thurloe to H. Cromwell, major-general of the army in Ireland.
I suppose your lordship will have an account from other hands of the proceedings of the parlament, soe that I need not be large in giveinge you that trouble. The remonstrance, which my last mentioned, hath taken up all our tyme since this day senight. The considerations of kingship are postponed till all the rest be agreed upon. This day our debate was, wheither his highnes should not name the person, who should succeed hym in the governement of these nations; and it was carryed in the affirmative with very great clearnes. To morrow wee are to debate, wheither another house shal be erected, as a third state, which for ought I see will prove a very hard and doubtfull question Lam sb er t an d th i s a r i e opposeth very much, but without any effect in the house. Some of the army are unquiet. There is a committee of officers, which often meet here in Whitehall; and the other day they came to his highnes, and represented to hym their trouble, that somethinge was doeinge in parlament to the destruction of the present governement. His highnes spake to them in very plaine yet loveinge and kinde expressions, and as I heare very much to their satisfaction; but yet I am not able to say, what the issue of affaires wil be. I doe not like the complexion and constitution of thinges. Settlement I feare is not in some men's mindes, nor ever will be. I trust those, who would be glad to see it, will be taught to submitt themselves to the all-wise disposeinge hand of God. The cavaliers are bussie, and demeane themselves, as if a suddeine rupture were approachinge. The best care is takeinge, that can be, for preventinge thereof. I doe not heare any thinge particularly of Ireland; as I doe, your lordship shall be sure to heare it from
Whitehall 3 March 1656.
H. Cromwell, major-general of the army in Ireland, to secretary Thurloc.
The newes of sir Christopher Packe's address to the house fills the mouthes and mindes of all men here, but makes noe new discovery of their inclinationes; those whoe formerly appeared disaffected to the present government, seeminge to have (as they term them) sad apprehensions of what was then proposed, whilest others are of opinion, that setlement cannot be effected without something of that nature. For my own parte, I cannot say but that I blesse the Lord to see his highnesse hath such an interest in the affections of soe farr the major parte of the parliament, as that they should expresse soe much satisfaction in his exercise of the present power, as to thinke itt the concernment and good of the nation to entrust him with more; allthough for other thinges I desire (and I hope all others of his highnesse relations doe soe too) to be prepared with a spirit of self-deniall and submission to every future dispensation of providence herein.
As for the matter and meritt of the proposealls themselves, I say in generall, that I doe not like them the worse, because some of the great ones could noe better digest them; for since they cannot allowe of what a parliament of their owne modelling hath done, I looke upon them as persons verry unapt to be quiett, nor able to endure (as I may call it) any settlement whatsoever: and therefore I thinke, that the depraved appetites of such sick mindes ought the lesse to be valewed; besides, I looke upon some of them as vainly arrogatinge to themselves too great a share in the right of his highnesse's government, and to have too high an opinion of their owne meritt in subverting the old. I have bin credibly informed, that they have been talkeing of an heptarchy, and of cantonizing the countrey, with such other conceits, as are not consisting with setlement; and therefore I ame soe farr from a tender sense of their dissatisfaction, that I rather esteem it a providential opportunitie to pull out those thorns, which are like to be troblesom in the sides of his highnesse, that soe thinges in the army and elsewhere may be brought to such a temperament, as that godly and well-disposed men may have securitie in itt.
I thanke God, I doe not see any extreordinary inclination to oposition here, for I
thinke there hath alreadie bin bitterness enough in the spiritts of some to be troblesom,
had not the Lord putt a hooke in their nostrills; but beleiving that they have done their
uttmost alreadie, I hope they can nowe do noe more. Nevertheless I have (by the advice
of such as I thought fitt) written to some of the well-affected officers of the army, to observe every motion of incendiaries, and to give checque to the first appearances of disturbance, whether the same be attempted by outward tumults, or by that more sly and specious
way of petition and meetings to that purpose. And in particular haveing bin well satisfied
of Hewson's alarumeinge his sons Lawrence and Jones (whoe have at present their residence
in Dublin castle, and have allwayes hade and influence uppon the company that guards itt)
with strange and blacke clouds, which he sayes hange over the heades of the godly, I
shall forthwith drawe out that company, and committ that place (where our treasury and
ammunition lyes) to one, in whome I can more truely acquiesce as to this cause and matter. As to the perticulers of the adress, although I ame unwilling to descant much upon
them, yet I shall venture to give you my thoughts upon some few of them; videlicet, I
beleive, that as much provision is made in those offers for tender consciences and for electinge future parliaments, as in the instrument of the present government; and that much
greater securitie is taken against the reviveing of Charles Stewart's interest then was heretofore. And truly, I doe not dislike the way of approveinge members for future parliament,
as whereby the distaste of rejecting such whome the countery hath chosen, will less reflect
upon his highnesse. As for that reservation, as to the choice of the chief officers of the
militia, I looke upon it as an high respect to his highnesse, inasmuch as they would intrust
him dureing his owne life with that power, which I myself allsoe doe not thinke fitt to
be intrusted unto any of his successors. Butt to conclude, I wish his highnesse would consider howe casueall the motions of a parliament are, and howe many of them are called,
before one be found to answere the ends thereof; and that it is the naturall genious of such
great assemblys to be various, inconsistent, and for the moste parte frowarde with their
superiors; and therefore, that hee would not wholly reject soe much of what they offer,
as is necessarie to the publick welfare. And the Lord give him to see howe much safer it
is to rely upon persons of estate, interest, integritie, and wisedome, than upon such as
have soe amply discovered their envy and ambition, and whose facultie it is by continueinge
of confusion to support themselves. As for my selfe, I onely hope, that things will be
soe ordered, as that there shall be no necessitie one his highnesse's successors to crush and
undoe his freinds and relations causelessly, and even for this allsoe, as for all other things I
will more and more endeavour to resigne my owne will unto his providence, unto whome
I committ you, and remane
March 4th 1656.
Commissioner Pels to the states-general.
H. and M. lords,
Since my last of the tenth of March I am to advise your lordships, that the French embassador monsieur De Lombres came hither yesterday from Marienburgh, intending within two or three days to set forward to find out his majesty of Poland. It is hoped, he hath brought some reasonable propositions from the king of Sweden for the king of Poland to accept of, who arrived at Calisch on the 23d of February last (as we are informed here) where there is to be an assembly of the Swedish senators about several businesses, and especially to consult about the treaty with the Muscovite, and the coming in of the prince of Transilvania Ragotzky, of whom we only hear, that he is upon the Polish frontiers. The dam of Weysel, which was digged through by the Swedes, hath not yet done much damage, the water being very low in the Weysel, so that the water, which by this breach floweth into the Werder, is most consumed in the ditches and morass places, as otherwise.
A letter of intelligence from Dantzick.
Dantzick doth begin already to feel the damage by having the dam of the Dantziker-Werder bored through by the Swedes. There are some villages in that Werder already set under water. Those of Dantzick endeavoured to stop the holes, but they were prevented by the garrison in the fort upon the Hooft.
The stenden of the dukedom of Prussia again assembled in Koningsberg have delivered another petition to the duke, in my mind containing several considerable points. I thought fit to send it to your lordship.
The king of Poland is said to be arrived at Briest in Podlachia, situated upon the river Bucht, there to keep a rycksday, and especially to debate about the treaties with the Muscovites, which it is believed will end to their content.
The Dutch embassadors in Denmark to Ruysch.
Our last to your lordship was of the 7th instant. The lord embassador of the duke of Brandenburg went from hence secret for Odenzee eight days since, to signify to the king certain orders, which he hath received from his master; upon which he is to desire an answer. We cannot yet learn of a certain, what the contents are of his orders; only we are advised by letters from Odenzee, that he signified to his majesty the coming in of the duke of Sevenbergen into Poland, and made it is business to extend the great advantages, which would accrue thereby to the Swedes; upon which (as we are informed) no reflection was made.
The assembly of the states lasted but a week, and the same was finished (as the lord ryckshofmaster writ to us) to the good content of his majesty, all the members of the said assembly declaring mutually to contribute their lives and fortunes for the service of his majesty and the kingdom; and they gave their free consents for the raising of money, as it was proposed; and the nobility agreed amongst the rest to give half of the comings in of their revenues, and the churchmen likewise half of theirs, besides other taxes, which were consented unto. By the next post we shall be able to inform their H. and M. L. of all passages, more particularly, in regard the lords chief ministers are expected hourly here. His majesty, it is thought, will make a journey to Holstein, before he returneth back hither.
A letter of intelligence from George Pawly.
My last to you was of the last ultimo and 4th instant; wherein I have advised the little hopes of having any fleet in three or four months from that time. This is to let you know, that the last week they have ordered all the regiments, that were hitherto appointed for the fleet, to march to Badajofa (which is the principal town) against Portugal; and the next week they appoint all the army to march against Portugal, which will be 30000 men; so that they intend with expedition to take the business in hand, that you need not to trouble yourself as yet about their fleet. Yesterday I was with don John, and he askt of me, if I had as yet any resolution from my friend from Paris about the peace. I told him, I had none as yet; but I believed I should soon have it. You may be confident of the peace, if you please now to make use of this occasion, and engage my credit with you, that don John intends really. I wonder I have no advice of the pension to be delivered; I have not deserved this from you; for I defie, that you can have surer intelligence then that which I send you. I hope it is performed ere this. As for news wee have none, only that wee hear of 3 or 4 plots, which was against Cromwell; and the parliament going to the banquetting-house, where Cromwell was, to give him joy of escaping, the staires fell down, and many hurt, espetially Harry Cromwell.
The council of Ireland to secretary Thurloe.
By occasion of many complaints from time to time, touching the inconveniencies arising to the people here by foreign coins, the same being either generally of bad metal, and not near answering in intrinsick value to what they pass for, we have lately taken the same into our serious considerations, and the benefits, which in our judgments would redound to this land by a due and timely depressing thereof, which we apprehend would be the producing more plenty, ballancing and quickening trade, necessitating and encouraging the transportation both of English inhabitants and commodities, and forwarding the plantation here. The expedients and steps for this work are many, and will require time throughly to consider, and (being considered) to put in execution, being gradually to be done. Yet because the opportunities now in our hands call for some speedy beginning therein, and yet not conceiving our selves by any of our instructions impowered for it, we do therefore in the first place (as our duty requires) submit the consideration of the whole to his highness's wisdom and pleasure, whether we may at all make any progress in it; which (if approved of) that then his highness and the council would please to impower us here in order thereunto, for the using such ways and means to effect the same, as we shall judge meet. And we crave leave to let you know, that the speedy signification of his highness and council's pleasure herein (as shall stand with their great concernments) will be requisite to the present carrying on of this affair, which is desired by
Council-Chamber the 4th of March 1656.
Extract out of the register of the resolutions of the states-general of the United Netherlands.
After deliberation had, it is resolved herewith, to desire and appoint the lords Schookeracdt, Lodenstein, pensionary deWitt, Mauregnault, Vander-Hoolck, Wyckell, Ripperda, and Schulenborgh, to make to be precisely upon the 13th of April next in the province of Groningen, for the deciding of the difference and breaches in the member of the Ommenlanden, between the Eems and the Lauwers; and to that end they shall have necessary credentials and instructions made ready for them. And in the mean time, that letters be writ to the members of the said province, to desire them to defer their assembly 'till the said 13th of April next, in regard the commissioners of their said H. and M. L. for some important affairs of state, and other hindrances, cannot be there no sooner.
The Dutch embassadors in Prussia to Ruysch.
We have been hitherto every day in conference, about the negotiation given us in charge, with the lords commissioners of Sweden; and at any time when we met with any difficulty, we had audience of the king himself, and at last we have prevailed so far with his majesty about the points of illucidation, that the inequality stipulated in the Elbing treaty shall be observed in all the tolls, which were imposed since the year 1640, or that shall be imposed hereafter; and that their H. and M. L. subjects and other allies comprehended in the said treaty shall remain only subject in proportione arithmetica, the inequality, which in the said year was in practice between the proper inhabitants and foreigners, according to the general toll-list agreed upon the 4th of March of the said year 164 . . at Nieucopingh in Sweden, to which his majesty is content, and to agree the same as a certain rule for the preventing of all disputes: but as we advised their H. and M. L. on the 6th instant, his majesty is not yet to be disposed, that the articles of the ordinance going immediately before the said toll-list in the treaty, which is to be made, should be inserted either by themselves, or separate from the same tanquam pars tractatus, to be signed on both sides, in regard the said articles do most concern the order and direction about the receiving and getting in of the tolls, for the preventing of frauds and other disorders; likewise, that some of the said articles in observance and by a further ordinance of the year 1640 are for the most part abolished, as the first articles containing, that the burghers or citizens only in sea-towns are to ship and export goods, and that they are to pay the tolls thereof, and answer for the same; so that the foreigners in buying of the said goods, in respect of the toll that is paid, were forced to buy the same so much the dearer of the burghers or citizens; but in regard the occasion, why this was made, was taken away with the treaty of Broomsbroo made in the year 1645, therefore that order was wholly annulled, and the foreigners were permitted to ship out their bought goods, and to pay the tolls themselves. For as much as concerneth the second article, that is only applicable to our negotiation, in regard the same expresseth the inequality, which in the year 1640 was ordered between the proper subjects of Sweden and foreigners; and according to which that the toll of all imported merchandizes is to be regulated, in regard in the list no other than what was specified in that of goods exported, except wines, beer, and the like bruvage, so that the said article together with the said specified list of the exported goods, according to their H. and M. L. resolutions, is to be a certain rule, according to which the inequality is to be observed, unless their H. and M. L. had been pleased to make reflection upon the list of the year 1646, where we are told, all imported goods stand fully specified; as also, that the fourfold tolls upon the ships of the year 1640 are altered, to the great commodiousness of the commerce, and much less impost for the foreigners, into a twofold impost or toll; whereof the order is thus observed, namely, that the goods laden in a foreign ship pay six, and in a Swedish ship five; and for as much as concerneth the goods laden in a privileged, and a ship of war, pay four. The 3d article being a rule and order for the Swedish ships, to prevent all abuses, is yet most observed, and in respect of the new built men of war in the year 1646 encreased; giving therefore little reflection to the state of their H. and M. L. The fourth article maketh mention of some, who are exempted from paying toll in Sweden, which in that time had reflection to the inhabitants of Denmark and Norway, in regard they had obtained such a right, as well by treaties as ancient customs, and the inhabitants of Sweden enjoying the same prerogatives in Denmark and Norway; but in regard hereby high disputes did arise between the said crowns, the said exemption of toll was wholly annulled in the said treaty of Breemsbroo, as doth appear by the 18th article of the same, it being for the subjects of their H. and M. L. trading in Sweden no other than advantagious, that no nation in Sweden should be exempted from paying of toll above them. Moreover, it is the mind of his majesty, that the said toll-list of the year 1640 shall be agreed and established, according to their H. and M. L. intention; but that the same shall be signed apart and separately on both sides, from the treaty which is to be made, and in regard the same is full of imperfection, that commissioners be appointed to supply the faults, and to remove that which gave occasion for the committing of frauds, as also to specify and express the sorts of merchandizes omitted in that list: but that therein no other nor further inequality, according to the arithmetick proportion, be observed than what the said list of the year 1640 can bear, and which is expressed in the second article of the ordinance in regard of goods imported, but that in the mean time, and whilst men are busy about the said corrections, the subjects of their H. and M. L. and others included allies, shall be only used with that inequality of tolls, and no more than is expressed in the list of the year 1640, and was then practised; in all which, as also in the omitting of the articles standing before the list of the year 1640, we find no difficulty nor consideration, but do conceive, that the intention of their H. and M. L. is chiefly obtained and effected; wherein we are the more confirmed, when we consider of the resolution which we received from their H. and M. L. upon the 28th of October last, upon that subject, wherein only regard is had to the tax of the list of the year 1640, yet remitting all things however to the high considerations and good liking of their H. and M. L. We have also obtained, that the said stipulated equality in all other countries and places belonging to the crown of Sweden, or that they may be possessed by them hereafter, shall be likewise practised in all taxes which shall be remaining since the year 1640, or that may be raised hereafter; and that to this end the respective toll-lists in the said countries and places, practised in the said year by publick authority, shall also serve for a certain rule. Upon the second point of the illucidation, we have effected the intention and order of their H. and M. L. namely, that the said stipulated equality in the tolls before the year 1640, shall also be in force, and practised in regard of the ships belonging to the subjects of the United Provinces, whether they be built there or elsewhere, except only the freedom and exemption, which hath been granted to some Swedish ships since the year 1640, in regard of their guns, bigness, and other chargeable conditions, which must be borne and performed by the owners thereof; but if so be their H. and M. L. subjects and other consederates will submit and make themselves subject to all the said conditions, that then they shall enjoy in regard of their ships the same prerogative and exemption with the subjects of Sweden, and they shall be equally with them also in regard of the tolls imposed since the year 1640, or yet to be imposed. The effecting of the third part of illucidation, concerning the privileged societies and persons, hath given us very much trouble, in regard the lords commissioners of Sweden did still raise and produce new difficulties about it; but at last we obtained satisfaction from his majesty about it the day before we went away; so that we have likewise accomplished and answered the desire and intention of their H. and M. L. in that particular; and now no other inequality is to be observed between both sides, subjects and inhabitants, whether they consist in privileged companies or otherwise, in regard of the tolls and imposts imposed since the year 1640, or that shall be imposed hereafter, than that which their H. and M. L. were willing to appoint in regard of the men of war. But for as much as concerneth the annulling of the pitch and tar-company, there was never the least likelihood of it, for reasons mentioned at large in our letter of the 20th of last month. But for as much as concerneth the annulling concerning the fourth and last point of illucidation, whereas their H. and M. L. desire a certain interpretation in regard of the city of Dantzick, upon the meaning and words of the firm and sincere amity and good correspondence, which standeth agreed in the form of the inclusion, his majesty is pleased to agree to nothing further about that point than that what is here inserted, as followeth.
Ad præcavendas omnes sinistras consequentias, quæ respectu urbis Gedanensis eliciuntur ac imposterum elici possent ex prævia interpretatione articuli de vera ac firma amicitia & bona correspondentia, mutuo & reciproce cum omnibus sæpe memorata conventione Albingensi comprehensis colenda, declaramus mente contrahentium in concipiendo isto articulo non suisse, ut à S. R. Majtæ Dantiscani pro fæderatis haberentur, sed duntaxat inter eam dictamque civitatem omnis cessaret hostilitas, ac è contra conversationis commerciorum liber rediret usus, salva tamen side, quam Polonia regi debet, in quantum ejusdem exercitio S. R. majestati Suecicæ durante hocce bello directe vel indirecte damnum vel noxa non creatur.
By all the above-mentioned their H. and M. L. will be able to see how far we are proceeded in our negotiation, and in what terms it standeth; and their said lordships will thereby be also able to judge what further orders and resolutions are necessary for us, for the effecting of their intentions.
A letter of intelligence to resident Bradshaw.
Right honorable sir,
Since my last of the 13th instant, the king of Sweden is broken up from Marienburg yesterday, and is gone for Thorn: his army is marched that way before him. The French embassador, and one of the Dutch embassadors, are gone with his majesty for Thorn, and from thence the king intends to goe so farr as Lowitz, beyond Warschau, for to meet Ragotzky with his forces. But before the king's departure from Marienburg, all the embassadors have held a conference together concerning peace; and one of them called monsr. de Lombre is gone for to speake with the king of Poland againe, and from thence he is to returne with an answer to the king of Sweden. There is now hopes made of a treaty, and that perhaps at Thorn; God in his mercie grant it. The duke of Brandenburgh's embassadors have given their project of peace to the king of Sweden, and they returned againe to Coningsberg to their master the duke, who hath commanded 3000 of horses for to joyne with the Swedes. The Moscoviter is come with a strong army towards Riga, for to beleger that citty againe; and some say, that the king of Denmarke goes with his fleete for to beleguer Riga at sea, because the Moscoviter hath made a ligue with him; and some are of opinion, that it is yet uncertain, whether the duke Ragotzky will take the Swedish or the Polish party. The Swedish general Steinbock keepes the Muscovites back from doing more mischiese to the duke's subjects, and revenges the injury done unto them with burning, plundering, and murdering them just so as they did to ours; but the rivers being free from the ice makes Stainbock come back. This being all at present, I remaine at all times,
From Elbing the 16th of March 1657. [N. S.]
A letter of intelligence.
Now for your several interrogatories, I will give to some an ignoramus, to others a short answer. First, for his holiness, with whom I had the honour to discourse once, and often to hear discourses upon him, I should believe him to be of a very peaceable spirit, not apt to attempt any thing extraordinary, but rather to leave the church just as he found it; only he is a high favourer of the jesuits, who by the pope's countenance and assistance have lately gained what all men judged morally impossible; that is, their return into the Venetian state, where it is true they could never get any power, if the present senators could live always; but the present senators are mortal, and the jesuits orders die not. So when they shall educate the Venetian children, the next generation shall see all the power in the jesuits hands; and they are as gracious at Venice as now at Vienna, where (that I may speak to another of the interrogatories) the emperor hath for his consessor a jesuit, for his pulpit a jesuit, for his altar a jesuit; honoureth their church and college with his presence oft, always their comedies, and sometimes their table. In short, his imperial majesty looks on the jesuits, and they on him, as having the self-same interest. His only favourite is the duke of Ausbergh, a man born to as small a fortune as our duke of Buckingham, tho' perhaps better bred, and more able in state affairs. In precedence as well as power he is above all the rest of the court. Next to him is the prince Gonzaga of Mantua, of the same family with the present empress, and some other Italians, favoured enough; but no Spaniard at present, except the Spanish embassador, nor is there need, so long as the jesuits have any favour. The king of Hungary is said to have a far better brain, though a much more ill-favoured head and face than his brother, that was king of the Romans. Touching the kingdom of Poland it is believed, that the emperor will not meddle without the electors and princes consent, which will never be gained. The protestant princes have good correspondence amongst themselves, and with the king of France. For our protector, he is a little too far off, and his condition looked upon as unsettled; besides, some say, in his seeming care of the French protestants in the late treaty with France, he only gained, and not they. Concerning the general peace, we rather apprehend a general war; Spain, the emperor, Pole, Denmark, and Holland, against France, England, Sweden, and Portugal. As for the marriage of the infanta of Spain, after several enquiries at Vienna, I must answer ignoramus. That the emperor should meddle with Alsatia, I hardly believe; but it is very probable he will continue this spring his succours in Italy. To your 54th interrogatory, this examinant says, that the prince elector Palatine hath no particular favourite, but favoureth all of worth or birth, himself governing his states, revenues, and court, judiciously, frugally, splendidly; and further this examinant saith not.