A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 7, March 1658 - May 1660. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
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April (1 of 6)
Downing the English resident in Holland, to Lockhart, embassador in France.
I thank your lordship heartily for the kindness in the particular concerning Mr. de Thou, which will also turn to good account, in relation to his highness service. I pray, if it may not be too much, tender my most humble service to his eminency, with thanks for his remembrance of me; and that I shall always remain sensible of the civilities received, when I was at La fere. I have also, and shall again, at my next visit, present the respects to Mr. de Thou. The states of Holland are at last resolved, that they will have no cessation with Portugal, till an ambassador shall come. The preparations for the fleet go on apace. De Ruyter is now at Texell with 27 sail. We have no news out of Denmark; but for ought we hear, the election at Franckfort is like to be put off for some time; and I hope the minister, which is to go from his highness to Berlin, may do some good. I shall, by the first safe occasion, send a cypher to you by the way of England, which, when it is arrived with you, please to let me have notice thereof; and then I hope I may with a little more safety, communicate with you. My very hearty thanks to my lady. It is here said, that she is speedily for England, from whence I hope shortly to see my wife, and am
Mr. Swyft, Lockhart's secretary, to Lockhart.
I have delivered all the letters (which I received in one packet two days since) according to their several directions, except that to general Disbrowe, to whose present lodging his servants in the Spring-garden could not direct me. His lordship was married on monday last and hath ever since continued at his lady's house.
I was this day and yesterday at Mr. secretary's lodging, moving for my dispatches. His lordship hath promised to give a speedy answer to the papers I brought hither. As soon as I have my orders, I shall diligently and carefully return to my duty.
This day I met with Sir James Whitelock, who came but yesterday to town, and goes to morrow in the country. He hath promised me to make his own excuse unto your excellency by this post for all faults. I have not any thing more to importune your excellency with, but to beseech you to continue me in the esteem of
The examination of John Brocke, of Wenistone, in the county of Suffolk, Leith-rigurs taken before collonel Humphrey Brewster and major William Burton, justices of the peace, of the county of Suffolk, April 1st, 1658.
Who saith, that about fourteen days since he went to Mr. Robert Cooke, son of Henry Cooke of Thorenton Hall, in the said county, Esq; being sent for by the said Robert Cooke, who asked this informant whether he would go with him; he should have a good horse and furniture. He asked upon what design? and the said Cooke reply'd, he should know when he called him. But this informant came presently away with his brother to Beccles; but about eight days after, the said Robert Cooke came twice to this informant's house to speak with him, but he was not at home; and about three days after he came again, and then he was not at home; but the next day being friday the said Cooke came again, and found this informant at home; and being together, he asked him to go along with him; whereupon this informant told him, that he had no money; but he said he should not want to pay for what he called for. This informant then asked him, where they should have horses; he answered that there was a great many horse and foot coming over, and to land on those coasts with a French commander, but they would not come yet, because there was no grass; and that there was a great many gentlemen of the said county, which were to join with them when they came over; and he further saith, that there is one Robert Cooke of Braynfield, gentleman, in the said county, cousin to the said Robert Cooke of Thorenton, is very much accustomed to keep company together; and he saith it is likely, that he may be one of the same party, which he mentioned above; and further saith not.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Le sieur Lampsius ayant ci-devant en la guerre entre le feu roy et le parlement fourni au parlement des armes pour bien 180,000 Livr. requiert le payement et lettres intercessionales de cest estat au protecteur.
Il y a eu continuation du rapport du sieur Ommeren et autres ayant este a Bergen op Zoom, qui contiendroit beaucoup de licence de ceux de la religion Romaine et du clergé, et en quel nombre il sont dans la bourgeoisie et en la milice.
L'on est mal satifaict, que de Dennemarck l'on ne reçoit pas la copie du traité de paix en Dennemarck, car quoi que ce roi a mal fait de traiter sans cest estat, si ne devoit il pas refuser la communication du traité.
La Hollande a proposeé, qu'on devroit faire un interdiction generale es toutes les provinces, pour ne plus vendre des charges militaires; mais cela n'est prins, que pour notification: et le depute de Groningue reprocheoit a ceux de Hollande qu' a le sieur de Merode voulant vendre la campagnie de cheveux (il y a 3 ou 4 ans) la Hollande favorisoit, et se monstroit faschée, que la Groningue la lui osta sans satisfaction. La principale redresse de la milice n'est pas encore proposée, ni rapportée.
Ceux de Hollande ont produit leur advisprovincial, dans lequel le Hollande declare, qu'elle excuse la suspension d'armes pour 6 mois proposée par la France et l'Angleterre, & cependant ils permittent a Amsterdam la navigation publiquement et avec passeport vers Lisebon et Portugall. Le secret est, que leurs capers ne feront nulle molestation aux navires, soit Hollandoises, soit estrangeres, qui d'ici et avec passeport naviguent en Portugal, mais rencontrants en mer des neutraux, n'ayants points de passeports Hollandvois, ils les molesteront, voire les emporteront pour en incommoder la navigation et commerce des neutraux.
Le resident d'Angleterre a esté én conference àvec le sieur Huygens, van Hoorn, et Wyckel touchant ce qu'on a fait ou capitain Tyssen a Amsterdam, qu'on a banni. Item a ce van Diest a Rotterdam; mais il n a' prins nul contentement en cela.
Les deputes l'admiraulté ont remis jusque au 1 de juin l'affaire de la liquidation de l'equi page fait durant la guerre d'Angleterre, demandant le consentement du subside du millian et quelque fournissement.
L'assemblée des estats de Hollande s'est separée sur reces jusque au 30. Avril. Cependant n'est encore resolu rien de final touchant l'employ de la flotte, dont le dessien exterieur est encore de mettre l'estat en bonne posture, pour avoir l'oeil la ou il fera le plus besoin. Amsterdam est la plus active: le reste ne se haste pas.
La Hollande aura consenty en admission de la ville de Munster; mais felon la resolution ou 2 Mars; a condition que les villes de Lubeck, Breemen, et Hamburgh y consentent; ce qu'elles feront lentement.
Il y a eu grand debat; si on recevra le recevreur Tins en l'appell, estant condemné par le conseil d'estat en bien 1½ tonnes d'or, h. e. sily a appell du conseil d'estat: cela sera mis es mains de haut conseil pour avoir.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
Sans doute escrira le Resident de Cromwell meme du peu de satisfaction, qu'il recoit ici, et comment on s'en mocque; car n'est ce pas une raillerie de dire, que transporter des contrebandes par terre ou par des petites barques par les canaux du Sas et Escluse, ne soit pas contre le traité de paix; ains que la paix defend le transport par mer es havres, que Protector tient bloquees. Voila une subtilité, qui vaut bien toutes celles de Scaliger; eten effect, les Estatz de Hollande n'ont jamais eu la pensée de quiter ce commerce, meme des contrebandes; qui est un des plus riches, et d'autant plus, qu'en cette conjuncture Hollande plustost le donneroient en don a Eipagne que de le laisser en peril; car ils sont plus pour Espagne, l'empereur, Poland, que jamais, et font grande jactance; soi tenant bien ascertenés, que Cromwell ne fera rien pour Sweden quand bien les estatz de Hollande l'attacquent par Navires de Guerre mais Cromwell se peut bien asseurer, que les estats d'Holland, gaignant advantage sur Sweden, monstreront par apres leur insolence, tant plus contre Cromwell, car ils soit animes contre Cromwell plus que jamais; ce qui est une grande ingratitude, car l'on sçait bien, que le Seclusion vient de Hollande, et si Cromwell relachiroit le Seclusion cela embarrasseroit les Estats de Hollande merveilleusment. Il est bien croyable, que Estats de Hollande par les Navires de guerre ne feront pas guerre a Cromwell directement; mais la ou ils pourront opprimer les amis de Cromwell, ils ne tarderent pas un heure. Je puis bien asseurer, que Sweden donnera a Dantzick non seulement la Paix mais toute chose raisonnable, si Dantzick le veut; mais Estats de Hollande font tout ce qu'ils peuvent, a fin que Dantzick ne prenne pas la Paix or si Cromwell voudra en cela plus secunder les Estats d'Hollande que le Sweden je doute; car les Estats d'Holland par apres se mocqueroient de Cromwell, qui est fort abusé s'il ne croit fermement, que les Estats de Hollande feront secretment pour Holland et Espagne tout ce qui est imaginable. Je reste,
De Thou the French embassador in Holland, to Bordeaux the French embassador in England.
Messieurs de Grandmont and Lionne are still at Franckfort, where they have no few businesses to decide about the contest, title, place, precedency, now that the ambassadors of Spain are come there, supported by the presence of the king of Hungary, archduke Leopold, and all their adherents. There is great hopes of the peace of Poland, which securing the city of Dantzick will also quiet the minds of this nation here, and will free them from a great deal of jealousy, which they have in themselves, and what is suggested into them on the side of Spain for this cause against the king of Sweden.
The princess royal and her son arrived here a few days since; they have been absent this five months. There is no good to be expected from Hesdin: it is the greatest and most insolent treachery that ever was undertaken.
This state is making what haste they can in setting out their fleet, which will be divided into three squadrons, one for the Narrow, another for the Mediterranean, and the third for the coast of Portugal. They forbear to resolve any thing about a suspension of arms with Portugal.
Boreel the Dutch ambassador in France, to the States-General.
H. and M. Lords,
I have received the king's letter to the marshal of Grancey, governor of Thionville, to the end the lord of Wyckraet and the Neder Hemert may be freed henceforward in his royalties from all excursions of the French garrisons, and that his subjects formerly taken prisoners and detained at Thionville be presently released.
I have also received the king's order to the Duke of Ebeuf, governor of Montreve, to facilitate the restitution of the goods and lading of two Netherland ships, not long since stranded upon the coast of Picardy; partly plundred by the inhabitants, and partly seized upon by the said duke, and applied to his own use; which I have strongly opposed, as having no right to them. I have also received his majesty's letter to his lord ambassador, the lord de Cominges at Lisbon, wherein his lordship doth absolutely order the restitution of the Netherland ship, called the Elephant, formerly taken on the coast of Spain, by the treachery of one Justo de Bills, and brought to Lisbon. A well known person of quality here told me, that all preparations were making to begin the campain early this year; and that the armies of France and England joined together on this side of the sea will consist at least of 40000 men, whereof 10000 are to be English, which are to be transported out of England and Scotland. For the exemption of the foreigners taxes for the Netherlanders, who are here in this kingdom, your high and mighty Lordships subjects, I have been hitherto only able to obtain a provisional decree of the 14th of March last for the space of six months. They do still scruple to grant me a general decree for the time to come, after the expiration of the said time, whereof I thought good to give your high and mighty lordship's advice. It is reported here, as if the king and cardinal did intend to go over suddenly for Normandy, in regard of the affairs in that province are in no very good condition. The renewing of the treaty for the campaign concerning this kingdom and England is said to be perfected, and there are daily and continual communications held between them.
Your high and mighty lordships having ordered me in your last to inform myself about what was reported concerning the erecting of a whale-fish-campany in France, whose octroy should contain prohibition to all others whatever not to import any train-oil, or any thing that proceedeth from the whale into this company, which is directly contrary to all the treaties made between France and your high and mighty lordships, since the year 1596 till this time; I have done all that I could to inform myself particularly about it, and I do find in effect, that there is such a design on foot at court; that the same is drawn up into an edict; and that several great persons have a share in it: that the said edict is sent to the parliament at Rouen to be verified and registered there amongst many others; but that that parliament doth as yet refuse to do it. I have addressed myself to the count De Brienne about it, and signified to him in conformity to your high and mighty lordships order, that if the said edict of whale-fishing be not suspended, and the intended prohibition annulled, that I had order to demand audience of the king and his eminency.
Capt. H. Smith to the protector.
May it please you Highnes,
In pursueance of your highnes former instructions concerning sir Henry Slingsby's treasonable designe against your highnes person and government, by endeavouring to seduce and corrupt your highnes and to betray this garrison into the hands of Charles Stewart; there hath been nothing wanting tending to the effectuall thereof. Sir Henry since his being confined to the castle hath tried by many arguments to ingage capt. Overton in his wicked and malicious plott, by promising him preferment and a summe of money to revolt with the castle from your highnes to Charles Stewart, and did the same night promise capt. Overton hee would take course by some friends he had in the country to have provisions sent in for the victualing the castle, and that hee would helpe the capt. to some men for defence of the place, and told him, that Charles Stewart had a bank of money in England of five thousand pounds to gratifye such, as should doe him service; but would not confes where it was; and did promise the capt. that he would give him twenty pounds to raise forty men. This evening sir Henry delivered the inclosed commission to major Water-house in the presence of capt. Overton, whom the major caused immediately to read it. I doe humbly conceive there is now sufficient evidence against him concerning the whole busynes; and therefore I humbly desire to receive your highnes commands concerning him, which shall by God's assistance be faithfully observed by
Capt. H. Smith to secretary Thurloe.
This evening major Waterhouse hath received a commission from sir Henry Slingsby under the hand and seale of Charles Stewart, which I have sent inclosed in this letter to his highnes intreating you to deliver it to him. Sir Henry hath endeavoured to engage capt. Overton in his treasonable designe, promissing him, that if he would revolt with the castle from his highnes to his king, that hee should neither want preferment nor money, and more particularly told him, that he would give him for his present supply twenty pounds to raise forty men, and that he would take course to have provision brought in for the victualling of the castle from some freinds he had in the country. He did also informe major Waterhouse and capt. Overton this evening, that hee had severall freinds in the country, who had promised to raise men for his king, whom I will endeavour to apprehend as their names and places of abode are discovered to me. I suppose now there will bee full and convictive evidence against Slingsby, and therefore if his highnes shall think fitt, I will speedily send him up to London by a party of my troope with the major and capt. Overton; but at the present Overton is not able to goe out of his house being very lame and ill. Sir, according to your instructions major Waterhouse hath endeavoured to get what he could out of sir Henry, concerning the party mentioned in your letter: hee told the major, he did believe sir Marmaduke Langdale was not in England, and did seeme not to know of that busynes; I very believe, but that hee and the rest of that party, especially such as are actors in the designe, have bound themselves by an oath of secresy not to discover each other uppon any account whatsoever (which hee would have put uppon major Waterhouse.) Hee told the major, that the false names alwayes began with the first letter of their owne name, and that hee had a list of three hundred counterfeit names, which the major will endeavour to gett alight of. Sir, I have agents abroad att Newcastle, and elsewhere in pursueance of that busynes; but have not received any account from them, but expect it every houre, and as soone as I can understand any thing, it shall bee speedily sent to you by
To Nieuport the Dutch ambassador.
I sollicited this week several lords of the council, and the lord secretary of state, about the releasing of the two Portugal prizes; but in regard the said lords have been very busy about their domestick affairs, the lord secretary of state told me this morning, that he would do what he could to get ready an answer to their high and mighty lordships upon that subject. Their high and mighty lordships letter to the lord protector, of the 30th of March last, concerning the three ships sent by Michael Diest, Merchant at Rotterdam, to Dunkirk, and taken by some English frigots upon the coast of Flanders, I received yesterday; and delivered the same to day to the lord secretary of state, who told me, that it did very much trouble him, that the said three ships were claimed by subjects of their high and mighty lordships, in regard they were certainly informed out of Holland and Flanders itself, that the same in effect belonged to Spaniards; that the other two ships, which run on shore, and were afterwards gott off by some Flandrians, were carried into Ostend; and that the captain of the said Flemmings was presented by Don John, with a golden chain for his pains. His lordship said, that he would deliver their high and mighty lordships letter to his Highness.
Mr. Fr. Cheynell to secretary Thurloe.
I desired Mr. Stapley to procure a list of the gentlemen engaged for Charles Stuart, not only in Sussex, but in other countyes also; and likewise to enquire, when and where the gentlemen did meet to consult; and whether they had not some private meetings in the night in small companyes, in order to a generall rendevouz; and he promised to give mee a faithfull accompt upon the 5th of April at the farthest. I desire punctuall orders concerning any commission or patent tendred to him, whether it be his highnesse pleasure, that he shall receive it in case he transmit it to the commander in chief in Sussex, to be immediately presented to his highnes. Sir, I presume to give you this trouble, that I may receive the more punctuall directions, and make the quicker dispatch for the service and satisfaction of his highnesse. Be pleased to signifye his highnesse pleasure therein to
The examination of Robert Cooke, son of Henry Cooke, of Thorenton, Esq; in Suff. taken before us coll. John Biscoe, lieut. coll. William Style, major William Burton, capt. Isaac Preston, April 2, 1658.
Who saith, that he knoweth not of any insurrection to be in England to be intended, neither did ever he hear of any foreign army under the command of a Frenchman to be landed on these coasts; and he denieth all his whole charge; and further saith not
A letter of information.
The caveliers seeme to be transported with joye, for they saye their last messenger is now come, assuring them, that their master was ready to putt on board 7000 foot and 600 of Marsine's horse; and that he hath provided for him five months provision to bring with him, because he will incampe as soone as he is landed, and will not remove any whether, but wheresoever he rests againe, he will strongly entrenshe; so that he will not be forced to fight, unlesse they assault him in his campe; and if he should be besieged in his campe, it must be with all the forces that can be made; and then his friends will have liberty to try their strength, when there will be noe army to oppose them: yet they saye they have orders to rise as soone as they can (before he lands) in the west, that forces may be drawne off from hence, that he may land with lesse resistance, and that the citizens may the more securely rise; and of that they boast much beyond my beliefe. They say they have made every of their agents for every ward to cast up, how many may be depended upon to appeare at the first rendevouz; and in the whole they amount to 10000: and yet they say they have not setled their buisinesse in the Tower-Hamletts, but they are at this instant working about it, tasting mens affections, and giving out onely good words, trying how many may be expected from thence, as soone as they can raise a hubbub. They boast that some of the most considerable men of estates in the city are engaged; (but I cannot beleeve it) yet they saye they have bene able within this month to send over 10000 l. to their master, that the Spaniard might see he had freinds here ready to assist him. I dare not inquire into the names of these great citizens, lest I should make them jealous; and I find that they are under much secrecy about the naming any body, especially to one, that does not enter into their confederacy; and I cannot imagine a pretence that's fayre of any good reason, of my being inquisitive after names.
And they saye, that there is a man in the west, who hath always been for the parliament, that will rayse them 5000 men; and they saye he hath 3000 armes in his house, which were left there at the ending of the first warres.
Secretary Thurloe to Mr. Downing, resident in Holland.
I received yours of the first instant by an expresse from Yarmouth upon tuesday last; yours by the post, of the fifth, yesterday; and that by lieutenant-colonel Bedles of the 4th, just now; as also another dispatch with some paper, and a letter to your lady; but I do not yet heare any thing of the admirall's cornett; when I doe, your desires shall be comply'd with: and I doe not observe, that there is much in any of those letters, which require new directions, my former haveing lett you know his highnesses sence upon most of the particulars you mention, unlesse there be any thing in cyphers in the letters brought by Bedles, which I shall not have tyme to open before the post goes; if there be, I must deferr the answere thereto till the next oppertunitye. The more I think of the business of Portugall, the better I am satisfied with what I writ you by the last upon that subject; for seeing the Dutch designe soe much to the eastward, wee have no reason to be over-jealous to accomodate their affairs for them at Portugall, which certainly a peace there will very much doe, or a cessation of arms, and you are to steere yourself accordingly in your negotiation about that buisnesse, as I writ more fully by my last.
It's resolved to send Mr. Meadowes to the treaty between the kings of Sweden and Poland, and accordingly he is directed to hasten to Hamborough, where instructions shall meet him. M.G. Jephson, at his most earnest request, is to returne home; but we cannot here resolve so soone, to send one to the elector of Brandenburgh; nor doe the Sweadish ministers here speak of it at all. I pray, mention not that Mr. Meadowes is the man to be sent to the treaty aforesaid. It is very considerable, that the lights in the Sound are in the power of the Swedes. I pray be informed what the Dutch intend to doe about it.
My meaneinge was not, that you should presse too much upon Port-William, but only to cherish the correspondence, and that too with as little obstination as is possible; but a letter to him I cannot yet send you for divers very considerable reasons; however, doe not put them out of the hopes of one, but rather that they may expect it. I will be sure to keep this correspondence with you as a great secret. I much wonder, that the soldiers are still sent for Denmarke. I cannot immagine what the Dane should doe with them. I shall not need to desire you to be very vigilant about the designe of their fleete, and of the just time when they will be ready. I pray returne all kindnesse to the resident of Denmarke, and assure him, that his highnes desires not only a good correspondence with him, but a further intimacy; and that he may expect from him whatever he expected from the nearest ally. I writ to you twice or thrice about caryinge a considerable correspondence in Flanders, both with the Spaniards and Charles Stuart, thinking you might have an oppertunitye for it where you are. I shall not stand for any sume of mony, if it be sure and good. I earnestly intreat you to bestow some of your thought and pains about it. It seemes the great noise of the confusions and troubles are not yet over. I trust there is lesse ground for them every day then other. I sent you by the last a copye of the petition from the officers here to his highness, and all the army in Scotland here addresse by single regiments, in as affectionate terms as can be well thought of. Herewith comes a copye of an address from the army in Ireland. By all this sure it is evident, that the armyes are not disatisfyed with his highnesses conduct, or in any danger to desert him; and all this was most voluntary, ariseing ex mero motu; and this will confute the doctrine, which Nieuport distills so industriously, and somewhat lessen the credit of his correspondence. I knowe whom he conversed with there, and they are discontented people, and such as were for Charles Stuart, or Levellers, and he understood nothing from any good hands; and this you may assure them, with whom you have any confident communication; and that whatever they build upon his information, they will be deceived in. If you could get a considerable person of the cavaler party to engage in a corespondence, that now is or may come into Holland, the better to colour it, wee might demand him of the states, in pursuance of the treatyes.
Besides these particulars from the army, a great part of England, and all Ireland, desire to make the same addresses; so that if the caveler will returne, I suppose they will finde enough about his ears, and most of all, if Charles comes from Ostend, which I believe they have now little heart to doe, our shipps have kept them in so longe, that their seamen run away, and many of their foot; besides, their campane drawes soe near, and the 3000 men expected from Biscay not being come, that the Spaniard will scarce be in a condition to spare his infantry.
Our men at Mardike are in a very good condition, and long to be in action. The treaty is renewed betweene us and the French for the next campaigne. I pray enquire with all diligence, whether the Dutch will meddle in the business of Flanders, yea or not. I am informed that there has been a trety betweene the Dutch and Charles Stuart about transporting his men into England with their fleete; and that Charles Stuart hath offered them Jutland in some of the Scotch islands for that service. Whether the treaty was with any of the states generall, or Amsterdam, I know not; but it was, as I believe, with some of them. I pray enquire into it by such secret means as you can.
I perceive you give Hesdin for lost to the Spaniard; I think it in very great danger; but our last letters say, that there was some hopes of it still. The wise and children of the governor are made close prisoners in Paris, which is noe very good signe; but yet 'tis said, that soe much is obteyned from the governor, that Hocquincourt shall not be received into it upon his returne from Brussels. This designe was layd much further then this: some other townes and whole provinces should have revolted, and a generall insurection was designed, as in England by the influence of Swed and the Spaniard; but it is defeated, and the deserted party reconsiled. This I assure you is very true; so that if Flanders was to be saved this yeare by these designs, I suppose it may be in some danger. Mr. Crooke delivered me a letter from the states general to H. H. demanding the ships of Van d'est to be restored without delay, whereat I was somewhat surprised, considering what you have represented to them in that business. I shall remember to prepare something in answere thereto, by the next, to be sent to you.
Lockhart, embassador in France, to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your Lordshipp,
The confusione of that scribble sent by the last will beare witnesse for me, that at wrytting of it I was under very great indisposition and paine; and tho' I have cause to blesse God for my being restored to my health, yett I have reasone to be ashamed, that having undertaken in two or three of my last to cleare your lordshipp in some perticulars, I find myself as little able to performe my promise concerning them, as when first I ingadged myself. I hope your lordshipp will have the charity for me to believe, that I have used the best of my endeavors in it. If vexatione for my ill success and disappoyntments could excuse me, I should have much to lay for myself; but it being to little purpose to truble you with storys of that nature, I shall only tell your lordshipp, that I am promised ane audience this evening, and satisfaction to all my demands. By ane expresse, which I shall send to-morrow morning to Calais, your lordshipp shall know what shall passe at this evening's audience: if it come not to your lordshipp so soone as this, it will not be long behind it. The court is reddy to part from this so soone as they have done the devotions they are accustomed too in the ensuing holy weeke. Hesdin is lost, and all things else here are in the same posture they were formerly. I am,
Secretary Thurloe to Lockhart, embassador in France.
I have had none from your excellency this day, which is the usual time for the French mail to arrive here; nor had I time to give you the trouble of mine by the two last posts, which went from hence. And indeed I did defer all I had to say (which was not much) until Mr. Swist's return, who is yet here, and stays only for the ratification of the treaty. All that we have to do by the treaty is in hand, viz. the recruit of our fleet, and the provision of hay, wherein we hope to answer our agreement very exactly; and so we hope will those on your side, especially now that Hesdin is over, the news whereof M. G. Morgan sends us this day. It is necessary, that we know the precise day for our fleet to be upon the coast. The being early in the field will very much facilitate the next year's work, whereof I know your excellency will make them sensible. I hear the enemy is yet in their quarter, except it be 2 or 3000 men, who (as Morgan writes) are busying themselves in slighting Link, and building a fort upon the Colm between Bery and Dunkirk, which is but a mere trisle to prevent a siege. I perceive they think the prices of corn high: I do assure you it will not be had lower here, corn being much risen of late. I do not hear, that any body is come yet to receive the hay at Mardike. It is necessary, that I know his name, that so the hay may be consigned to him. Some of it is on board, and will be there very shortly. I remain
Secretary Thurloe to Lockhart, embassador in France.
Your excellency is sufficiently informed concerning the business to which this inclosed relates, which is only his highness's sense therein, concerning what money is or shall be paid into your excellency's hands upon that account, which you are desired to pay unto doctor Coladon, or to Jaques Bordier his substitute. I shall not need therefore to detain your excellency further, than while I assure you, that I am
I was by very great instances constrained to write this letter; but though I do not understand the business so well as to know perfectly whether I do well in it; and therefore, if it cross my rule of justice, or his highness's interests, I hope your excellency will use your wonted prudence in it notwithstanding this.
Lockhart to secretary Thurloe.
May it please your Lordshipp,
At my audience yesternight, I had opportunity to speake fully to all particulars. This day the whole rest of the levy-money will be payd in, and by the wedensday's post bills shall be sent for it. I returned one half of that rest of levy-money last weeke; but did not turne it over, expecting to heare either from your lordshipp or Mr. Noell, that you had come to some agreement about it. One of Mr. Noell's to me, at least a fortnight agoe, gave me hopes, that he would make some such bargaine with your lordshipp; but having heard nothing farther touching it, I dare delay the turning over of the mony no longer. I could not perswade his eminence to disburse any more mony for hay; so that your lordshipp must send just as much hay, as the mony turned over upon that account will amount to. The cardinal promised me to send an expresse to England to-morrow, who shall see the hay shipp'd, and will bring a list of such other provisions, as they will need, and bills of exchange upon London to pay for them: but that must not be trusted too; for the court being ready to depart, he is so press'd with multiplicity of businesse, as seldom he remembers any thing, save just in the moment he is spoake too; so that if this expresse do not come, I must beseech your lordshipp to take care, that the hay be at Mardick by the 1st of May, new styl; and I must beg the same thing for the recrutts. Mr. Tallon, who is at Calais, will be sent to Mardick for the relieving of both. Discontents here are exceeding high, and universall: they are founded upon theise two particulars; first, because the overture for peace meets with soe cold a reception. 2dly, Because the cardinal suffers the enemies to post themselves at Hesdin, from whence they have a free passage into France; and instead of employing his majestie's forces for the recovery of so important a place, he intendeth, as they give out, to imploy them against Dunkirke and Graveling, and is to deliver these places, purchased by the blood and treasure of France, into the hands of the English, their old and most dangerous enemies, which, they say, is not only against the interest of France in particular, but against the whole catholick interest in generall. To allay the heat of theise seditious and factious spirits, the cardinal is forced to give it out, that he intends to reduce Hesdin before all other actione; and that his designe against Dunkirke, or any other place, shall be defer'd until the latter end of this campaigne, or the beginning of the next; and that the drawing together of the English body at Mardick is but to amuse the enemies, to the end he may recover Hesdin upon easier terms; and least the enemie should beseege Mardick, when the king's army is before Hesdin, he provydeth it with a quantity of hay and oatts, sufficient to maintayn 800 horse, which he intends to leave at the foresaid place all this summer, for its better defence. He desyres your lordshipp may cawse some such story fly abroad in England; and that you will take notice of it to 467, and expresse some disatisfactione, becawse the French seem to be as uncertain in their resolutions this year, as they were the last; and except treatties be punctually kept, it's to noe purpose to make them. I have this day writ to major generall Morgan, that I have some fears the resolutions touching Gravelinns and Dunkirke will not be executed so soone as once I expected; and that the reduction of Hesdin is ane actione, that so much imports France, as probably it will be preferred to all other interests.
The court moves from this this day sennight, and goeth directly to Amiens, and from thence to Abbeville, so as the seege of Duakirk is form'd, and the lynes closed, it will advance further. The forces begin to draw together from all quarters. Their generall rendevows is appointed to be upon the first of May, N. S. betwixt Amiens and Perron. Mr. la Ferte's armie drawes out of its quarters at the same tyme, and gives jealousie to Theonville and Luxenburgh. Mr. Turenne was with me last night; and when I discours'd with him the strength of the army, I find the estimatt he makes of it will be at least 3000 men short of that number the cardinal gives it. If the Alsatiane forces, that are under the duke of Wirtemberge and Mr. Balthasar's command, were come up, there is no doubt but they will be strong enuff; but I feare they cannot come up to the beginning of the seege. Mr. Turenne told me, he had spoake with the cardinal in the morning, and had proposed severall difficulties in the busines, which, he sayd, he had done for no other end, but that they might be so forseen and provyded against, as the enterprize might not miscarry in his hand. He insists still upon the loan of two his highness's old regiments of foot for three weeks tyme. He told me plainly, that without such a second, he durst not answer for the successe of the businesse (I found, by what past at my audience yesternight, he had sayd as much to the cardinal). But I durst give him no hopes, that his desires would be granted. He spoke to me also about the marquisse of Mompillian's businesse. I find he resents much the delays it meets with, which maks me importune your lordshipp with my humble desyre for its being brought to some issue.
When his eminence spoake to me concerning the borrowing of two old regiments for the tyme aforesaid, he urged the granting of his desyre upon no other account, then that of the great need wowld be of them. I took the freedome to tell him, that his argument from necessity was framed by himselfe; for if the French army were in the condition it ought to be in, there wowld then be noe such need of them. He answered, that his levyes in Alsatia had been retarded by some accidents; and whereas he had expected them by 1. of May, it would be towards the end of it before they cowld come up; besydes, they protested, that if the French officers had made their recruitts according to the money allowed them, there wowld have been noe need of his borrowing any of his highness's forces; and tho' he made it his very humble and earnest sute to his highness, that he wowld spare two regiments for three weeks tyme, yett he assured me, that a refussal of it showld not hynder the going on of the desygne, tho' it wowld render the successe of it very doubtfull; for Mr. Turenne had informed him, that they must come before the place in three bodys, which, by reason of the channells, wowld be so seperated from on another, as they cowld not, till the bridges were made up, relieve any of the three bodys, in case the enemie should be strong enuss to attempt any one of them; and that their beatting any one of them wowld not only be the looseing of the place, but of the army, and whole campagne. He prayed his highness to take into his consideration, what the consequences might prove both to England and France, if any such misfortune showld fall owt. I towld his eminence, that I feared the present posture of affairs in England wowld not give way to such a condescension; and to the end he might not rely upon any such thing, I rendered all hopes of it as desperate as I cowld; but tho' I am abundantly sensible, that they, by their ill measures, have involved both themselves and us into very great difficulties, yett since the danger seems to threatten us as much as them, I know not whether the leaving of that businesse to its hazard, or the endeavoring to secure it by the meane of the desyred aide, be more advysable. The pinch will lye heare, if the lynes of circumvallation were once closed, the camps fortifyed, and the communication secured by the bridges, I think then there wowld be noe great need of any old regiments; but, till that be, I feare there may be too much. Your lordshipp will not need to write an answer to this, because, if it please God, I intend to begin my journey towards Calais on Monday next. I must beg the favour of a frigott to transport my wife to Dover, and must desyre the frigott to be in Calais road on the 16/26th instant. If your lordshipp have any commands for me, lett your letters be directed to the post-master of Calais, with order to him to keep them till I call for them. I have much to say concerning affaires at Frankford; but dare not venture upon giving your lordshipp an account of them till I come to Calais. Your lordshipp may assure his highness, that the election of the emperor will be deferred for a considerable tyme, and that it is probable those of the electors, that are of the French syde, will be hard enuss for those of the house of Austria, and the pope, out of whose hands they are lyke to take the mediation for the generall peace, and are lyke to have better successe in their endeavors for it then they cowld have had. I find in some mens resolutions here towching peace greatter alterations then perhaps your lordshipp will believe. They seem neverthelesse, and, I believe, are really constant to their resolutions of fullfilling their treatty with England in the first place, and look upon it as a means to oblydge the other party to take what conditions they will give. By the next I shall send the cardinal's answer to his highness's letter concerning Mr. de Bourdeaux businesse; and I doe not make haste to send it, because I knowe the reading what I have to say, will be as little satisfactory to your lordshipp, as the writeing of it will be to,
General Monck to secretary Thurloe.
There is a little thinge in Ireland, wherein I may bee accidentallie heerafter much concern'd, which I must desire his highnesse favour in; and in order therunto, I have entreated my brother Clarges to acquaint you with the particulars of the businesse, and to request your kindnesse and assistance in itt; which will adde much to the many obligations you have conserr'd uppon
Mr. Bradshaw to secretary Thurloe.
My last of the 30th March gave your honour notice of my arrival here, and inclosed translatts of two Russe letters from Nashokin, invitinge me to returne; as allso a copie of my answer to him, which I sent to prince Adolphus, under a flying seale, to send it forward, or returne it me, as he should judge it convenient, in reference to the present affaires of his majestie of Sweden. In the interim I here waite the further pleasure of his highness and the councell, that, if it be thought fitt, I returne upon those letters from Nashokin, without further security or assurance from the great duke of his accepting the mediation, who neither by his chancelor, nor any other, vouchsafes answer to my addresse in September last, except he would have his order for my comeing to Musco to be understood an approbation of the mediation, that then suteable supplyes of money may be appointed me by letters of creditt from Mr. Upton as formerly, or upon some sponsable merchant here, where it will be most suteable for me, there being losse by drawing money from Elbing heether; and I shall be ready to observe command. Your honour sees by the letters of Nashokin, under what character the great duke hath ordered to receive me, he understanding my credentialls (as I ever thought he would); and accordingly if I proceed, I must appear before him, which will require, that I be suteably accompanied with a minister, a phisition, and a competent number of servants. Since my last I have received letters also from count Magnus de la Grand, signifying his being upon his way to the treaty with the Pole. He is of the same opinion with prince Adolphus, that his majestie of Swede, notwithstanding his successe in Denmarke, and league with that kinge, desyres a peace with the Muscovite; but if his highnes judge it not honourable to send againe to him, as I presume he will, having been so long slighted, I shall not then doubt, but that it will please his highnesse to permitt my returne for England in a few months, to looke after and settle my owne concernments there, wherein truely I have suffered much, by reason of my long absence. I am glad to understand by your honour's letter received by the last post, that the officers of the army, as well as the citie, have prosessed their fidelity to his highness. I hope God will appeare as formerly against your enemies, and direct your councell for the setlinge of the nation. If it should be resolved, that I proceed for Musco, pray let Mr. Waynewright know it, that he may send me by the company's ships such persons and things, as I have writt to him for. Refering your honour to the inclosed paper, which is all the present offerres, I cease your further trouble, and remayne,
P. S. Sir, My secretary Straus is goinge for England, with a commission of agencie from the duke of Courland, which because it gives occasion to the Swedish ministers (if not to the kinge himself) to suspect, that the duke, whom they thinke hath beene a backfreind to the mediation his highnes propounded by me, notwithstanding his noble entertayneinge of me, hath secured his ends by him; and that my secretary, to ingratiate himselfe with the duke, he hath not been so faithfull to me as he ought; I thought good therefore to give your honour the inclosed true relation of the businesse, submittinge it to your judgment, desiringe that Straus may enjoy his employment, if it be not found, that he hath used indirect means to obtayne it.
Not long after my comeing into Courland, it was observed, that the duke sent after for my secretary Straus, and had long and private discourse with him thereupon. Questioning my secretary about it, he told me, that indeed the duke had sayd to him, that, if I proceeded not to Musco, he would give him employment for England in the roome of one that was lately there; which I wondering at, that the duke should offer my secretary employment, without first acquainting me with it, I charged Straus, that he should by no means engage himself to the duke whilst I was upon the negotiation; but if I proceeded not for Musco then, at my returne to Hamburgh, he should be at liberty to entertayne what preserment the duke would give him; which he promised to observe. A little before my departure out of Courland, the Swedish agent there came to me, accompanied with the gentleman, that had beene lately the duke's agent in England, informing me, that he had understood, that my secretary had offered his service to the duke; and that he doubted, that to engratiate himselfe with the duke, he might do evil offices, requesting me not to permitt him to serve the duke, whom he had reason to believe was no friend to the mediation my master propounded by me. Upon which I agayne questioned my secretary about it, who then protested, that the duke first offered to employ him, before ever he tendred his service to the duke, assureing me, that he had not, nor would not, engage himself to the duke, until I either returned from Musco, or was returned to Hamburgh, if the negotiation took not effect. At my comeing to Memmel, Straus desired leave to goe to the duke, to see what conditions he would give him, being (as he sayd) I was not like to proceed for Musco; and then requested my letter of recomendation to the duke on his behalf: to which I gave him this answer, that being the negotiation was not ended, but that, for aught I knew, I might yet proceed, it was not answerable in me to recomend my secretary, acquainted with all passages, to a foreign prince, suspected by the K. of S. especially being the duke had not acquainted me with his desire to employ him, wishing him, and requireinge him, that at no hand he should engage himself before my returne to Hamburgh; for that if the state of England came to understand of it, they would not receive him; and then I gave way only for him to go to the duke, to see what conditions he might have of him, after my returne to Hamburgh, notwithstanding at that time he absolutely engaged himself to the duke by oath, which after I understood, I employed him no further, but tooke on another secretary. This is the truth of what hath passed in that businesse; and truely I doe not believe, that my secretary was false to me in either revelinge to the duke of Courland my transactions with the great duke, or in suppressinge the great duke's answere, as was suggested by the Swedish ministers; but only being desirous to secure the employment to himself, he was more forward therein then did become him, which hath indeed (together with some passionate expressions of his, when I refused to give him a letter of recomendation to the duke, saying, that if I hindred this preferment of his, he would seek revenge) tyed up my hand from recommendinge him to his highness and your honour, as otherwise I might have done, it beinge my desire, that such as have lived with me, should advance in the world.