Border Papers volume 1: December 1587

Pages 289-302

Calendar of Border Papers: Volume 1, 1560-95. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1894.

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569. Instructions to Huntingdon. [Dec. 3.]

Imperfect—the first 4 articles are awanting. On his going down to resist the apprehended invasion from Scotland, Sir Henry Lea, Sir Robert Constable, and Thomas Bamborough, are appointed to advise him on the preparation of the army. He will find 500 foot already placed on the Border, and is to levy 500 more if he finds it necessary. The Queen signifies, if cause shall require, that the army shall consist of 10,000 foot, and the several counties are specified, from which they are to be raised. Also 200 "launces" to be raised from nine counties. Lord Hunsdon is to be lieutenant under him—the Earl of Cumberland marshal of the field, Sir Henry Lea general of the horse, Sir Robert Constable general of the foot, Thomas Bamborough sergeant major, and Sir Symon Musgrave master of the ordnance. He is directed to make close inquiry in regard to foreign forces entering Scotland from Spain or Flanders, or greater musters of the Scots themselves, so as to have his own force ready to resist them.

9 pp. Draft, with large additions by Burghley. Indorsed by him: "27 Nov. 1587. Copia. Instructions for the Erle of Huntyngton datyd 3 Decembris 1587."

570. Carvylle to Walsingham. [Dec. 4.]

"Nowe in thextremytie of my sicknes I am bowlde to troble your honour with these fewe lynes, besechinge you of your accustomed goodnes and good inclynacion towardes me, to have me in remembraunce concernynge my sute, for that God hathe leide his hevie hand uppon me, even nowe when I showlde have done best serviee. For I have, I thancke God for it, a dowble crosse leid uppon me, to wit, bothe sicknes and povertie, so as I cannot, as I wolde, write suche occurrentes or advertismentes as I have done, for that I am not hable to travell to speak with my frendes to get them. Yet suche as I here, I do sertefie your honour, (that is to say),—the last of November, the Larde of Bucklewh, the yonge Lard of Sesforde, the Larde of Johnston, gathered their forces out of Annerdale, Ewesdale, Esdale, Lydesdale, Tividale, and the towne of Jedworth, to the number of two thowesand men, and rann into the countrie as farr as Eslington and the country aboute it; so as uppon the fraye and scrye, Sir Cuthbert Collingwoode and Capten Bellys salied out of the howse with xxvti of his soldears, and presently after, were intercepted by the Scottes and cut of from their strengthe, and a dowzen or more of his men slayne, hym self taken prisoner, and whether he be dead or alive it is not yet knowne. Sir Cuthbert escaped by helpe of his horse, but his eldest sonne was sore hurt and a nother sonne taken prisoner. Yet the next daye, one of the cheife gentlemen aboute thErle Bothewell, and his kynsmann, came in to my lord Governour, to make his acquittance, that therle and his followers were clere of the aforsaid roade, and that he was and woulde be a good neighboure to England—and so was very well intreated, and had long conferrance with my lordes honour. The gentlemans name was Mr Robert Heburne." Berwick. Signed: Robart Carvylle.

p. Addressed. Indorsed.

571. Hunsdon to Burghley. [Dec. 6.]

"Uppon a vayne jorney that Sir Cutbertt Collingwood made of late into Tyvidale, without my knowledg, with 8 or 900 men, where he gate nothing, but left 4 propre men behinde him which wer taken, for the Scottes havinge warning of his coming at the leaste 48 owrs before, carryed awaye all their goods, so as they founde nothing but the howses, with nothing in them, and the doares open; and so returned, with an ill jorney to Mr Bellowsis and his bande, who cam thither but uppon Satterdaie at night before: and this jorney was the Mondaie following, having had no tyme either to trayne them, or skant to settell them in their lodginges. Wheruppon Buckelwgh and yonge Cesford mad a gathering of all their frends they wer able to make of Liddisdale, Eusdale, Annerdale, Este and West Tyvidale, to the nombre of towe or 3000 men—wherof having certaine intelligens, gave present order to all this wardenrie to stande upon their garde, as also sent warning to the Middell Marehe that they would be within some part of England the Thursdaie night following, being the laste of Novembre, and accordinglie they were lookt for—but they of the Middell Marche heering nothing of them all night, seaverd them selves and went every man hoame to his beade. The ment to have enterid this wardenrie, which Buckclwgh woulde needs have don, but understanding that I did looke for them, and had provided for them, and uppon some mallis that younge Cesford bare Sir Cutbertt Collingwood, hee woulde needs goe thither, and so tooke their course one the backsyde of Cheavett to Eslington Sir Cutberttes howse, and sent 20 or 30 of their horsemen to spoyle the towne, and tooke 4 or 5 prisoners. Wheruppon Sir Cutbertt with his two sonnes and 4 or 5 of his servauntes, which was all hee had there, and road upp to a hill about 20 scoare above his howse, where hee was sett uppon and verie hardly able to recover the house againe. And so seemed to goe their wayes. And so Sir Cutbertt issued owt againe with those fewe horsemen, and tooke Mr Bellowsis with him with his smale companie of footemen, without sending anie one horseman to cleer the grownde or to see whither they wer all gon or noe. And so went upp to the same hill againe, where hee was presentlie sett uppon, and with muche adoe, gatt in at his orchard doare, his eldest sonne chaste to his gate which, being shutt, was unhorst by towe of the Scottes, and bothe he and his horse taken and carryed awaie, his youngest sonne in seking to gett the howse, had a soare blowe over thawrtt his face, but yet gatt in—the reste of his men taken.

Mr Bellowsis being likewise sett uppon, was forced to take the walls of an olde howse for his succour, which stands uppon the hill, where with his shoote, hee kept them of a good while, in which tyme, as yt is sayde, they kilde 2 or 3 principall men of the Scottes. Wheruppon a nombre of them alighted and rann furiously uppon them againe, who defended them selves verie manfully above an ower, and 14 or 15 of his soldiers moste crewelly slayne, and so mangled as they wer not to be knowne who they were, and so lefte stark naked; but by good hape the Lairde of Mangerton and one James Chessam servant to Bucklwghe, tooke Mr Bellowsis and carryed him awaye, who ells had bene slayne with the reste, being a littell hurt but in no daunger. And so the rest that wer with him wer carryed awaye. Yet afterward, the fraye arrysing uppon the coming in of some of the contrie, Sir Cutbertt went owt againe, and tooke the contrie with him as they cam in, and followed them, but could not overtake the horsemen, but overtooke part of their footemen, of which their was some 5 or 6 slayne, and some 150 or 160 taken prisoners—for theies contrymen will not willingly kill any of them. All the cattell wer reskewde, savynge 30 of Sir Cutberdes. So as by that tyme I have hangde 40 or 50 of the prysonars, whyche I wyll doo at the leste, I trust they shall have smale cawse too boste of that jorney. (fn. 1) Their are somany Scottes planted within Northumberland, especially uppon the verie borders, as no exploit or purpose can be so secretly resolved uppon, but uppon the gathering of any men togeather, the Scottes have straight warning. For in many Englishe townes there are more Scottes inhabitonrs than Englishe, and some have a 1000 sheepe going in England, and coarne worthe 2 or 300 li. in one towne, and untill this be amended, their wilbe littell good servis don uppon thes borders. And trewly the only waye to helpe this is to have a comission sent downe for the making of dennysons, which if yt may please her Majesty to lett me have, as my lorde Wharton had whan hee was warden of bothe theis marches, I will ryde the contrie of 2 or 3000 Scottes, and leave sufficient necessarie men as collionrs, fysshers, heardes, and sheappards and suche others, of whome their shalbe sufficient bands taken either of their masters or them selves, for their good behaviour—which comission the sonner yt is graunted, the better servis wilbe don—which I praye your lordeshypp to procuer, for yt is moste necessarie to be hade.

I have stayed towe daies the sending of this lettre, looking still to here from Sir Cutbertt Collingwood, who belike is asshamed to send me any worde of yt—but having written thus muche, Sir Cutbertt him selfe ys come to me, who tells me of a great many prisoners more, taken by some of this wardenry, and some of good accompt amonge them—whome I have presently sent for—and I muste deale plainly with your lordeshypp, if Raffe Graye had don, as hee was required and perswaded to doe, hee had overthrowne them every mothers sonne! For hee, Mr Carr of Fourde, and other gentilmen with them of this wardenry, wer 400 freshe horse, and 200 foote men; who yf they had gon but one myle forward, had had them all to a come into their lapps, but by no meanes hee could be perswaded unto it, and so loste them all to his great shame." Berwick. Signed: H. Hunsdon.

pp. Marginal notes by Burghley. Addressed. Indorsed.

572. Hunsdon to Burghley. [Dec. 6.]

"Havynge sealyd up my uther letter too be sent awaye at the openynge of the gates, I recevyd your lordshypps letter of the laste of November, by the whyche I perceve ther ys a resolucyon too putt an army yn a reddynes too be sent hythar, and amongste uther offycers I am appoyntyd too be leuetenant under my lorde of Huntyngdon. I have byn hyr Majesties lyvetenant my selfe, whan I showlde a gone to wyn Edenburro castell, and nowe to be leuetenante under one that never saw any servys, nor knowse yn any respecte what appertaynes too a capten, muche les too be a leutenant, I am offerd gretar wronge then I dyd thynke wolde a byn offerd me by that loorde; but I perceve yt ys a grete matter too be an Erle! But my lorde, knowynge how yll he and I shall agre for sundry uther respectes, and that what goode servys soevar shalbe dune, shall redownde too hys honor and glory, and yf any yll, ytt wylbe layde apon me, I pray your lordeshypp lett hyr Majesti understande that I wyll serve hyr Majesti heere or anywher els with 20 or 30 horse without pay, but too say I wyll take thys charge apon me, hyr Majesti muste parden me—for seurly I wyll ley yn. pryson rather. I was deputy leuetenant under my lorde of Sussex who was a worthy nobell man of servys, who was able to dyrecte—and now to serve under hym that muste be dyrectyd I know nott by whome, but I am well assuryd he wyll neyther be dyrectyd nor advysyd by me—I shall doo but smale servys too hyr Majesti, and les credytt or honor to myselfe. And my lorde I am sorry too be dreven too say ytt, ther ys never a nobell yn Ingland at thys day, that hathe seene somany servysys bothe by sea and lande as I have dune, and I assure your lordeshypp I wyll nott now yn my latter dayse, receve dyshonor and reproche, and yf anyman shall have any charge over me yn thys towne, I wyll leve the towne also. Thus my lorde, I have acquayntyd you with my full resolucyon yn thys matter, whyche I pray your lordeshypp too lett hyr Majesti understande, that sum uther may be appoyntyd too be leuetenant under hym, for seurly I wyll nott.… Towchynge the deputy of the Marshys (fn. 2) cummynge to me, he hathe byn with me sundry tymes, and at hys laste beynge with me, he semyd that havynge had sume talke with sume of hys frendes of the Cownsell, by whom he percevyd that yf I wolde send agayne too them too desyre metynges, he thowght ytt wolde be grantyd. I anserde hym, that I wolde never dyshoner the Quenes Majesti my soveren somuch nor dyscredytt myselfe so gretly, as too crave that at theyre handes, whych I had byn alreddy promeste by them and nott performyde; but yf the Kynge wolde appoynt any nobell man of hys cownsell too cume too the Bordars with suffycyent awtorryte too deale yn thes bordar cawsys, I wolde wyllyngely mete hym, and doo all the goode offycys I cowlde too apease thes border cawsys—but utherwyse ytt wolde nott be dune, but rather worse and worse one both sydes. Syns which tyme I have harde nothynge from hym.

For the Justyce Clarkes letters, they are nott gretly too be accountyd of, for neythar he nor the Chancelar ar yn any grete favor at thys present, and you wolde soone heare of yf the Kynge cowlde be gotten over the water, and they that ar aboute hym doo all they can to kepe hym att Dawkethe, thohe they dey faste at Edenburro of the plage, and one of hys huntes that was with the Kynge overnyght, deyde the next day of the plage, and one of hys equyrys, and yn Lethe few or none lefte yn ytt; but they wyll kepe hym from goynge over the water.

I recevyd a letter from Richarde Duglas, who wryghtes too me as your lordeshypp wryghtes, that no persuasyon that cane be eusyd can alter the Kynge from hys love and good wyll towardes the Quenes Majesti, but I see no fruites therof, nor any leklyhode, for yf the Kynge be so well gyven towardes hyr Majesti, what showlde lett hym too shew ytt? For ther ys non uther aboute hym but Bothwell only. So as yf all they werr of that mynde, thes incursyons wolde nott howlde one as they doo; butt yf any mayntenance or uther kynes may make hym seure too hyr Majesti, I howlde the same mynde that ever I have dune, which ys, too wyne hym thohe she pay deare for ytt—for yf thys army go forwarde, yt wyll coste hyr Majesti more yn one monthe then wyll content hym for two yere; besydes hyr Majestis dysquyetnes, the troble of all hyr realme, besydes the lose perhapes of many of hyr subyectes lyves—and besydes, yf she be ones seure of hym, she nedes too make the lese accownte of France or Spayne—for they can doo hyr Majesti no grete harme any utherway. And therfor yf ther be any hope of recoverynge of hym, lett hyr Majesti lose no tyme nor spare for no chargys.

Towchynge my letter too Sesforde, I doo send your lordeshypp herwythe, the coppy of Sesfordes letter, with my anser too hym, too judge apon; and for the Kynge beynge offendyd with Bothewell, I dare assure your lordeshypp that ther ys no suche matter, for my lorde Bothwell utterly denyse that he eyther cawsyd any roade too be made yntoo Inglande, or was consentyng too any.

I have nott harde from my lorde Admyrall syns hyr Majestis beynge with hym, butt the day byfor he dyd, wheryn he wrott that he hade senlt 5 shippes too my lorde Stewarde, and Sir Wyllyam Wynter too go presently after with 3 more, and hymselfe to go shortly after with the whole navy.

Now my lorde, the 3 of thys monthe I recevyd a letter from thErle Bothwell by a specyall servant of hys owne, hys master of howshowlde, and one that he ys specyally and almoste only dyrectyd by, hys name ys Robartt Heborne, a very wyse and dyscrete man, whose credytt was more than the letter—for the letterr towchythe the takynge up of Caverton, beynge Sesfordes towne, and harde under hys howse—whyche I had anserd byfor too thErle of Angus who wrott too me therof byfor by the Kynges commandment; but thys mans credytt was more then the letter comprehendes.

Fyrste.—ThErle excusyth hymselfe for beynge or knolege of the roade that Bukklewhe made yntoo Inglande, althohe hys trumpett and the master of his horse werr there, whome he hade lefte behynde hym for busynes of theyrowen, and that hys beynge at Bukklewhes byfor, was neyther by the Kynges commandment, nor too deale with any of Lyddysdale for any pledgys, but about sum controvarsy that was betwene sum frendes of hys about a tythe; and confessythe ynded that as he gave no commandment too anyman too ryde, so dyd he nott forbyd anymane to ryde, for yt was nott for hym too meddell yn anothermans charge—for my lorde of Angushe ys leuetenant, and yt was for hym too redres those matters, and too stay those rydynges—so as I fynde dyrectly that the groodge he hathe of my lorde of Angushe beynge leutenant, hathe byn a grete cawse of thes incursyons. Yt wer too longe too wryght all the dyscoursys, butt the cheef effecte was, that as yf the Kynge wolde a broken with hyr Majesti, he wolde have byn as forward as any man too a dune us sum yll, so fyndynge the Kynge too be utherwyse myndyd and by no meanes wylbe inducyd too breke with hyr Majesti, ther shall noman yn Skottlande shew hym selfe more forwarde too the contynewance of the amyty betwene theyr Majestis then he wyll be, and for proofe therof, yf I wyll mete with hym yn sum convenyent place, only myselfe and Cutberde Armerar, he wyll gett leave of the Kynge too speke with me only hymselfe and Robartt Heburne; at what tyme I showlde fully know the Kynges mynde, and that he dowtyd nott but yf matters may be eusyd with secresy betwene hym and me, but hyr Majesti and the Kynge shalbe as goode frendes as ever they werr, but he wyll deale with none but with me. To whome I anserde that whansoever I myght heare from his lordeshypp I wolde mete hym yn any convenyent and fytt place for us bothe, I wolde mete hym with as few as he wolde.

Heborns credytt from the Kynge was, that thohe he hade grete persuasyons and meanes made untoo hym for too breke with hyr Majesti, yett wolde he nott be inducyd too ytt, yf hyr Majesti wolde deale kyndly and well with hym. To whome I anserde that as hyr Majesti hade hythertoo sundry wayse made grete shewse and proofes of hyr love towardes hym, as yf any resonable matter that she may doo with hyr honor, she wyll nott wyllyngly lose hym yf she may kepe hym. This farr we have procedyd, and I looke too heare from thErle agayne very shortly. And therfor I pray your lordeshypp lett me know yf he make any mocyon of the renewynge of the amyte with hyr Majesti, what I shall anser or what I shall doo? And so, fearynge I have overweryd your lordeshypp with thys longe dyscowrse, havyng so many uther matters too tyar you withall." Berwick. Signed: H. Hunsdon.

2 pp. Holograph, closely written; with marginal notes and underlinings by Burghley. Addressed. Indorsed.

573. Bowes to Burghley. [Dec. 8.]

Understanding that her Majesty has been informed that I am behind with the pay at Berwick for a year and a half, that she is greatly displeased with me, and intends to appoint another treasurer to the army "(yf any shalbe)" and paymaster to the Border garrisons, I have thought it my duty to declare to you how I stand therein, and pray your help as I deserve.

At Christmas last, the Berwick garrisons were fully paid up, and having lately made up the reckonings for their full pay as next Christmas, the balance due to them is no more than 3,944l. 18d. of which I have paid a good part, and also cleared with Mr Vernon for same term, with some surplusages to be returned to myself. So instead of being a year and half behind, I have rather paid beforehand one half of the last half year's pay at Christmas next, and am come to York for the treasure appointed for the garrison, to make the full pay. So I humbly pray your lordship to acquaint her Majesty therewith, and to be mean to restore me to her good opinion and favour "(withoutt which I wysh my self inclosed in my grave)" and that I may be treated as others have been, serving the same office before me. "Att Yorke, the viijth of December 1587". Signed: Robert Bowes.

2 pp. Holograph. Addressed, Indorsed: "6 December 1587, Mr Robert Bowes to my lorde."

574. Hunsdon to Burghley. [Dec. 8.]

"Yesternyght Mr Hebborne came too me frome the Kynge too lett me understande how greatly he ys offendyd with thys laste roade too Sir Cutberd Collyngwoodes, ynsomuche as wheras young Sesfor showlde a byn marryd the Sunday followynge at Dawkethe too Lyddyngtons dawter, nece too the chanselar, the Kynge wolde nott suffer hym to cume ynto hys syght; so as they werr marryd two dayse after att Newbottell hys uncles howse, and the next day the Kynge sentt for hym and commyttyd hym too Edenburro castell, and commandyd my lorde Bothewell too sende for Bukklewhe, who ys commyttyd eythyr too Blaknes or sum uther prison. And the Kynge sent too me too appoynte the day and the place, and he wold sende an erle too mete me, who showld be fully awtorrysyd too doo justyce too the uttermoste bothe for Lyddysdale and Este and West Tyvydall. I thynk yt shalbe my lorde Bothwell, for my lorde of Angushe ys very sykly, and hys credytt ys nothynge so goode as my lorde Bothweles apon the Bordars. Towchinge the place, I thowghte Fowlden the moste convenyent place, beynge the accustomyd place for suche metynges—and for the day, I referd yt too the Kynges appoyntment, requyeryng yt myght be withyn 7 or 8 dayse, and that presently hys Majesti wolde gyve strayte order for goode rewle too be kept apon the borders, and apon knowlege therof I wolde doo the like,—whyche he hathe takyn apon hym shalbe dune.

Now they have made theyr accownte, they joy nothynge yn that roade, for fyrste, all the kattell wer reskewde, savynge 20 of Sir Cutberdes drawght oxen; and yn stede of 13 or 14 of our men that werr slayne, I am credably advertysyd that ther was neare hand 20 of them, butt themselves say more, wherof a sunne of Bedrooles was one, and a cosyn germen of hys, one of grete accownt amonge them; and yn stede of Mr Bellowse and Sir Cutberdes sune, we have taken 7 or 8 skore—themselves say they myse 200—so as by that tyme I have hanged 20 or 30 of these, I dowght nott but they wyll repent theyr brave roade. And seurly, Mr Bellowse was gretly too blame, for after Sir Cutberd was chaste from hym, they sent twyse too hym too yelde, but he wolde nott, beynge but 20 men, and they 2000 yn syght; so as they werr onse gone theyr wayse, tyll one Watty Trumbell whose brother was one of them that was slayne, towlde them what a shame yt wolde be too them all, too suffer them to tarry there unsett apon—and therapon a hunderd of them lyghtyd and so sett apon them.

My lorde, yt semes by thys gentylman that the Kyng ys nott so farr gone, butt that yf hyr Majesti wyll deale kyndly with hym, he may be browght bake agayne—but the matter muste be very secretly handelde, fo the Kynge sent me worde playnly that he wyll deale with noman yn Inglande but myselfe, nor with noman yn Skotlande but thErle Bothewell and Mr Heburne, who muste be the messenger betwene the Kynge and me, yf hyr Majesti wyll have me too deale yn ytt. Heburne dyd assure me that the Kynge doorst not talke with hym above a quarter of an owar with hym at a tyme, so as he hade 4 or 5 severall tymes talkynge with hym. Now my lorde I have bysowght hyr Majesti too consyder and way of what ymportance the amyty of thys prince ys of, especyally yn thys dangerus tyme, and yf yt be of any consequence, lelt hyr nott dally withall, butt too take yit whylst he ys yn a goode moode, and now or never. I have wrytten many partycularytys herof too hyr Majesti, which I thynk she wyll acquaynte your lordeshypp withall, and therfor I pray your lordeshypp be nott acknowne too hyr Majesti that I have wrytten anythynge too your lordeshypp herof, but only of the Kynges grete myslekynge of thys roade, which I perce[ve] he ys very desyerus that hyr Majesti showld know of ytt. I have wrytten too hyr Majesti towchynge Mr Heron, whome her Majesti commandyd showlde remayne kepar of Tyndale,—he ys nott fytt for the place, for besydes hys neglygense yn that servys at the burnynge of Hawden bryges, whyche hathe byn vowde too hys face by one that hathe marryd hys syster, he ys gretly suspectyd too be acquayntyd with that jorney; for his sunne by whome he ys wholly governde, and a man of hys who ys one of hys baylys in Tyndale, and younge Rydley, who hathe marryd hys dawter, and sundry uther of the Ryddeles, whome I have heare yn warde, ar dyrectly chargyd with the bryngynge yn of the Skotes too Hawden bryges. Rydleys brother ys fledd, and 2 or thre more of the Rydleyse, and yf I hade nott gotten sum of thes by a grete chanse, they hade byn gone too. Whan yt shall cum too theyr tryall, seurly I thynk yt wyll fale owte most apparantly—so as for thys and sundry uther cawsys, he ys no fytt man for that place; and therfor as I have wrytten too hyr Majesti too gyve me leve too appoynt sum fytter man yn the place, so I pray your lordeshyp too further ytt, and that I may have anser of ytt by your nexte. And so hopynge too heare shortly from hyr Majesti towchynge the grete matter, praynge your lordeshyp too delyver hyr Majesti thys uther letter, I commytt your lordeshyp too thAlmyghty." Berwick. Signed: H. Hunsdon.

"Wheras I have wrytten heryn that I have acquayntyd hyr Majesti with the matter of Mr Herron, my letter too hyr Majesti beynge farr longar then I ment yt showlde a byn, I am forcyd too omytt ytt—and therfor I beseche your lordeshyp acquaynt hyr Majesti withall, and procure hyr Majestis anser, for many thynges dependes apon ytt."

pp. Holograph. Addressed. Indorsed by Burghley: "8 Decembris 1587. L. Hunsdon l. chamberlen, Heyborn, Er. Bothwell."

575. Angus to Hunsdon. [Dec. 9.]

"Havyng consyderitt your last letter written unto me, namelie, anent the setting at libertie of the two unleafull prisoners, Captayne Bellosis, and young Collingwood, yt being a desyre agreable to reason and justice, his Majestie hath immediatlie sent commandment to put them at libertie. As likewise I would requyre your lordschip that the Kinges Majestie my sovereignes subjectes semblablie unlawfullie taken and deteyned prisoners, or under bande, may be freelie dischargit—speciallie the Laird of Mayerton (?) and the sonnes of Walter Car of Litledayne, and others in ther company, taken in the following of their lawfull trade of the Laird of Mellistons goodes. … How farre this laite thing done in England hes offendit his Majestie, he hath given demonstracion to the world, and not ceissit till the principalles of the grownde are committed to wairde, where they presentlie remayne. Ernestlie wishing therfore that the like good will for the taking awaye of inconvenientes may appeir into your lordschip, and that the meeting of the noble men mentionat of before, may be haisted, for the more spedie redres of the mony late outrages and enormeties that hes bene attempted on baith sydes and at all the Marches—whilk, as your lordschip trulie touched in your last letter, will not be taken awaye otherwise nor by noble men. For albeit the Kinges Majestie my sovereigne greatlie dislikes of this grit disorder at the Mydle Marche, yet hes his Majestie na les cause to aggravat the great outrages whilk his warden of the West Marches hes receved of late be the subjectes of England, assisting his Majesties rebells be playne hostilitie on day light with a gritt power, where the warden had somme of his frendes slain, sondrie taken prisoners, and him selfe chassit and narrowlie escapitt with his life, xij or xiij myles within Scotland," I will therfore desire you to fix the said meeting speedily, and to assure me of no warlike inroad till it is over.

As to that which your lordship has written about the Chancellor, "I am certanlie informit that he was never in Hallidan or Cesford in his life, nar in na other howse belonging to the Laird of Cesford or ewest the Border, safing onlie in September last at the place called the Freirs besydes Celso, when and whare all men may thinck ther could be na imaginacion of this purpose, whilk is growne to this inconvenient upon mutuall incursions and injuries on eaither syde." Thomptalloun. Angus.

pp. Copy by Hunsdon's clerk. Addressed. Indorsed by Burghley: "9 Decembris 1587. The Erle of Anguse to the L. Hunsdon."

576. Pay &c. of forces on the Borders. [Dec. 10.]

"A brief note of such sommes of monie as have been awnswered for the paiment of the 200 men first levied, and afterwardes of the other 300, to make the same 500 men for defence of the Borders."

The amount received (less expense of coats and conduct of 500 men) is 1205l. 13s. 4d.
Sums required for pay 1270. 0s. 0d.
"There wanteth" 64l. 6s. 8d.
Estimate by the receiver of Durham of his probable receipts by 16 January next 2000l. 0s. 0d.

1 p. Indorsed.

2. Another copy in same writing.

577. Hunsdon to Angus. [Dec. 11.]

I have your letter of 9th by Mr Alexander Hume deputy warden, and so soon as I hear of the home coming of Mr Bellowis and young Collingwood, and your proclamation for liberating all other unlawful prisoners, I shall do the same. But I pray your lordship for some order as to many English prisoners held by Liddesdale, who should likewise be freed. Touching a meeting, I know of none, but when I hear whom the King will send, and the day, I will be ready to meet him. Your lordship being lieutenant, will likely be appointed—and I think Fowlden is the fittest place—therefore give me a day's certain notice, and I will be ready. I have heard nothing of any attempt on the warden of your West March, though I had a letter from Lord Scrope last night—but will write to him to keep the peace. The information about the Chancellor was sent from Teviotdale, but I did not believe it. Berwick. Signed: H. Hunsdon.

P.S.—After signing this letter I had word of a house or two broken up last night between this and Alnwick, when 26 kyne and oxen were driven. One of the house says by the Laird of Corbett.

2 pp. Copy by Hunsdon's clerk. Addressed. Indorsed by Burghley.

578. Hunsdon to Burghley. [Dec. 14. 1587.]

Your lordship will see how since the small revenge that I made by some of this wardenry and of the Middle March, and the fear of revenge for their late attempt at Sir Cuthbert Collingwood's, where they had as many slain as we had, and almost 200 taken prisoners—that they are very ready to do justice now! As appears by my lord of Angus's letter received on Tuesday, the copy whereof and my answer, I enclose, hoping soon to settle the borders that the soldiers may be withdrawn and myself recalled.

"Yesterday Mr Hebborne returnyd too me agayne frome the Kynge with answer of sum spechys that had paste betwene hym and me byfor, towchynge hys nott answerynge of hyr Majestis letter, and hys dealynge with forren princys for ayde. Towchynge the fyrste, the Kynge anserde that yt was so soone apon hys knolege of hys mothers dethe, as he thowght he cowlde nott yn honor anser ytt—and besydes, he knew nott what anser too make too ytt—but I perceve that yf yt wolde please hyr Majesti now too wryght untoo hym, he wolde bothe accepte of ytt and anser ytt. But ytt muste be sent too me, and I muste sende ytt yn, for he ys lothe too have ytt yet knowne of any dealynge betwene hyr Majesti and hym. And towchynge hys dealynge with forren princys, he hathe commandyd Hebborne too assure me apon hys honor, that althohe he hathe byn gretly sollycytyd bothe by France and Spayne with many grete offers and dayly sollycytors about hym, too persuade hym theruntoo, yett hathe he never yeldyd too none of them too thys owar, butt ys as free from any of them as ever he was yn hys lyfe, and wyllyd hym also too assure me that yf any showlde be browght yn by uther mens practysys (whyche he dowghtes nott) he wolde too the uttemoste of hys powar turne them owte agayne and execute the law apon the bryngars of them yn. He also towlde me that sum that ar yll affectyd too hyr Majesti, hathe latly cume too the Kynge and bydd hym looke well too hymselfe, for the Quene of Inglande ys preparynge a grete army too sende too the Bordars under cullor too redrese thes border cawsys, and so wolde sett apon hym and hys realme, beynge unprovydyd. The Kynge anserde that he wolde nott beleve that hyr Majesti wolde make any suche army agenste hym, and wyllyd Heborne too tell me thysmuche (beleke to hcare what I wolde say untoo ytt.) To whome I anserde that the Quenes Majesti leke a wyse and pollytyke princes, understandyng of grete preparacyons made agaynste hyr, bothe by sea and for landynge, doothe lekewyse prepare bothe by sea and lande yn such sorte as whersoever they shall lande within any parte of hyr Majestis realme, they shall fynde that they ar preparyd for—and fyndynge the Kynge so dowghtfull a frende as she hathe latly fownde hym, too prevent the worste, hathe also appoynted an army too be reddy att a dayse warnynge too repayre hether, yf ther be cawse, but utherwyse I durste assure hym that hyr Majesti hathe no yll intentyon towardes the Kynge, unles he force hyr too ytt. He semyd too be gretly satysfyde with my anser, and sayde yt wolde stope theyre mowthes that wolde make that a cloke too brynge theyr uther devysys too passe.

Then he wyshte that the Quenes Majesti wolde make sum honorable offer too the Kynge, wherby he myght fynde hyr Majestis good wyll and favor towardes hym, and too shew that she ys wyllynge too have hys amyty and frendshyppe, saynge that the Kynge hade made serten demandes by Mr Archbalde Duglas, wherof he never hade anser. I towlde hym that I was no way too deale yn thatt matter, but I was nott ygnorant of hyr Majestis lyberall and honorable pencyon that she doothe bystow apon hym, whyche he doothe but slenderly deserve, and yf she myght fynde hym too deale Kyndly with hyr, and too make more accownte of hyr amyty then he doothe, he showlde fynde hyr Majesti reddy too doo hym any honor that yn reason she may. Herwyth he restyd very well satysfyde, yett remembryde agayne that the Kynge hade recevyd no anser of those demandes sent by Mr A. Duglas.

Thus my lorde yt semes too me that the Kynge ys desyerus too enter agayne yntoo amyty with hyr Majesti, but wolde fayne have ytt cume of hyr, and so yt apeares playnly untoo me by all the scope of hys spechys; so as now hyr Majesti ys too consyder what ys fytt for hyr too doo bothe yn honor and pollycy, and yf she wyll doo anythynge heryn, too lose no tyme. I perceve the Kynge wolde be wyllynge to heare from hyr Majesti, whether yt be that he ys preste by France or Spayne, or bothe, too make a dyrecte answer or no, or what uther respecte, I cannott yet gather.

He also tels me that for moste serten the Kynge hathe utterly refeusyd too suffer the Busshope of Dunblayne too cume too hys presens, or too receve hys letters, but hathe comandyd hym apon payne of dethe too departe the realme withyn 20 dayse, wherof 10 ar paste. Thys busshope came latly too my lorde Huntleyse as they say with letters from the Pope and uther princys to the Kynge—and yt semes that the Kynge ys very glade whan he heares of the well dooynge of the Kynge of Navare. It appeares by Hebborne that the Kynge ys desyerus that hyr Majesti showlde understande thysmuche, which I have thowght goode too advertys your lordeshyp, and therfor yt may please your lordeshyp too make hyr Majesti acquayntyd herwith." (fn. 3) Berwick. Signed: H. Hunsdon.

2 pp. Holograph. Addressed. Indorsed by Burghley. Inclosing Nos. 575, 577.

579. Hunsdon to Burghley. [Dec. 28.]

"I recevyd your lordeshypes letter of the 20, the 25 of the same, and am ryght glade of hyr Majestis goode and well acceptacyons of my answers and dealynges yn these matters, and I hope by thys tyme hyr Majesti ys as well satysfyde with my ansers towchynge hyr Majestis innocency for the deth of the Skotshe Quene, wherof I have advertysyd hyr Majesti yn my letter of the 22.

Towchyng hyr Majestis expectaccyon for answerr of hyr Majestis answer too A. Duglas—presently after the receyte of your lordeshypes letter towchynge the same, withyn two dayse after I recevyd a pakkett from A. Duglas too hys nevew Rychard Duglas, who ys all hys dealar heere, which I sent away presently, and withyn 5 or 6 dayse after, I recevyd a pakkett from hys sayde nevew, as I thynke yn anser of them—for he wrott too me that they requyarde haste—which lykwyse I sent away presently, so as beleke you know the anser by thys tyme. But byfor hys nevewse answer was returnyd, Carmychell cummynge too me, apon sum occasyon of talke of those matters, I towlde hym that I thowght that theyr imbassytor hade recevyd answer of those demandes, and towlde hym partly what they werr, and prayde hym too understande whatt he had advertysyd hys master of those answers, bycawse yf he dyd eyther add or dymynyshe, I was able too informe the Kynge of the trothe—who assuryd me that att hys returne owt of Tyvydall and Lyddysdale (as I wrott to your lordeshyp yn my laste), he wolde nott fayle too lett me know what anser hys imbassytor hathe made too the Kynge therof. From whome I doo nott looke too heare tyll after Newyers daye.

The factyons ar suche amonge the nobell men, as yt ys almoste an inpossybyllyte too wryght any sertenty of them—but thys for certen hyr Majeste shall fynde (yf apon any apparante cawse or credyble advertysment men may beleve anythynge), that the Kynge of hymselfe ys addyctyd too peace and amyte, and wolde moste wyllyngly enter agayne too renew and make parfecte the league bygoone with hyr Majesti, but the northerne lordes who ar all Papystes, beynge many, ar gretly agenste ytt, and those aboute hym that ar of the relygyon, doo nott agre amonge themselves—for the Lorde Hambelton who was accowntyd of the relygyon, ys now gretly suspectyd that by the meanes of hys brother Clawde Hambelton, he ys woone too be of the conspyracy of the kyllynge of the Chancelar, the Master of Glames, the Justyce Clarke, and uthers. So as they have hym yn grete jollysy, and ther ys yett no agrement betwene thErle Bothewell and the Chancelar nor betwene thErle Bothewell and the Hewmes—so as these partyculars makes that no man can tell what wyll becume of thys state. The Kynge makes open professyon that he wyll never alter hys relygyon, but wyll ever mayntayne the same—yett he deales so indyfferently betwene them, as whatsoever thErle Huntley and hys confederates dothe allow of, that the Kynge those abowte hym knolege of, and whatsoever these doo, he impartes ytt too the uthers, whyche ys thowght he doothe for feare of hys owne lyfe; but owt of all dowghte the Chancelar fyndes that ther ys no standyng for hym butt by hyr Majesti, and therforr yf he wer a lyttell hartenyd and myght be sewre of hyr Majestis favor, yt ys thowghte verryly that he wolde wholly rune that course, whyche yf he be onse browght too doo, all ys well, and ther wylbe no dowght or feare of the Kynge. I shall know more herof att Carmycheles returne too the cowrte, which wyll nott be tyll Newyeres even. I know the chanselar doothe nott truste A. Duglas, and the Kynge lekes nothynge of hym, and hys feare of A. Duglas beynge so ynwarde with Mr Secretary (as he ys informyde), makes hym too stagarr, for he knowse A. Duglas too be bothe wyse and suttyll,—but the Chanselar ys the only man too be woone, for byfor thys laste conspyracy, whyche was chefly by Bothwell, he had as grete interrest yn the northerne lordes as yn the uther.

I am sorry for the Kynge of Navare that he prospers no better; hyr Majesti ys the rather too seke too be sewre of thys kynge, or els he wylbe an yll neybor. Your lordeshyp seese what chargys hyr Majesti ys att by reason of these small trobles, too deffend hyr subjectes—butt yf he showlde becume eyther Frenche or Spanyshe, yt wolde coste hyr Majesti and hyr realme more yn one yere then wyll sarve too wyne hym and too pay hym 10 yere after. Yt standes now apon makynge and marrynge, yf hyr Majesti doo nott stryke whylste the iorne ys whott, I feare we shall make butt a crookyd pece of woorke of ytt!

Towchynge the roade yn the West Bordars wherof ys made so grete adoo, for my lorde of Angus wrote too me about yt, and Carmychell towlde me of ytt as of a very grete matter—wherapon havynge sowght too be informyde of the trothe, yt fales owte too nothynge, neyther too her Majesti nor too my Lorde Scroope, for your lordeshyp muste understande that ther ys a deadly foode betwene the Lorde Harrys and a surname opon that bordars whyche ar callyd Grytneyse, (fn. 4) who withyn thys 2 yere or the laste yere, kylde the Lorde Harrys brother, the Kynge beynge a[tt] Dumfryse,—who hearynge that the Lorde Harrys was cume too a towne aboute sum busynes, gatherde theyr frendes togyther, amonge the which werr sum of hyr Majestis subyectes (butt owtlawse) and bysett the towne where he was, and drave hym so strayte as he was forcyd too take a towar by good hape, nott without sum strokes, and so savyd hymselfe, whome yf they hade taken, they wolde a cutt all too pecys,—so they too hys horsys and kylde sum of hys cumpany, and took as many of the reste as they wolde, and so went theyr way. Thys towchythe my lorde Scroope nothynge, nor none of hyr Majestis subyectes but suche as hathe receyte yn Skotlande and my lorde Scroope cannott cume by them.

I have sowght too understande the cawse why the postes be so neglygent. I am very credably informyde, that whansoever Mr Randoll doothe putt yn a poste, he kepes hys fyrst yeres wagys too hymselfe, so as the poore man serves a whole yere for nothynge! And besydes he hathe a yerly pensyon of every one of them—of sum, xl s., 3li., 5 li., and of sum more, and I know that whan he went yntoo Muscovya, he hade of every poste 20 li.,—so as I marvell how they ar able too have and kepe theyr horsys! But thys he doothe extorte apon them." Berwick. Signed: H. Hunsdon.

2 pp. Holograph. Addressed. Indorsed.

580. Pay of 100 Men for a Month.

The captain at 4s., 112s.; the lieutenant at 2s., 56s.; ensign, sergeant and drum, 12d. each, 4l. 4s.; 100 footmen at 8d. a piece, 93l. 6s. 8d. Total 105l. 18s. 8d.

The month reckoned at 28 days.

1 p. Written by Hunsdon's clerk.

581. Proposal to fortify the English Border. [1587.]

[The anonymous writer humbly submits to the Queen a plan for defence of the Border against the Scots, which he calls an "Inskonce," thus described]:—

"An Inskons is a speciall kinde of an arteficiall fortyficacion, consystinge for the most parte onlye of mayne earthe, raysed with trenche and rampyour, and flauncked with bulwarkes, inclosed onlye upon the frontes and sydes supposed subjecte to the enemyes attemtes, and ever lefte open on that syde which lyethe next to the frende. …

There be two sortes of them—the one verie usuall, and ordynarilye applyed at this daye to the restraynte of stronge townes, fortes or sytadalls beseged—the seconde (which is out of moderne use, yet that which by this treatyse is whollye mente to be onlye propounded) is to be used for defence of whole cuntryes and teritories. The firste is restrayned within a small proportyon of grounde, and carriethe forme accordinge to the places that ar to be restrayned, but ever on the one syde open as is afforsaide. The seconde is drawen out by a right or oblique lyne, not restrayned as the firste within small boundes, but dystended even to the whole length of the Border that is to be inskonsede and defended. The firste kinde havinge loste a bulwarke, yt may be as hurtfull, beinge loste, as beinge kepte, yt was helpfull, to him that made it. Whearas the seconde hathe this peculiour propertye annexed unto yt, dyfferinge not onlye from the other above named, but also from all other kindes of forteficacions whatsoever—which is this, that as yt is of all others most serviceable, with less coste made, and with most commodytie kepte, soe althoughe by treason, negligence, or any other dysastor, yt shoulde fortune to loose a bulwarke or two, and the same shoulde come unto an enemye or rebells handes, yf theyre be not an armey reddye, and that even at instaunte, to seaze upon the same, the enemye by no possybyllytye canne holde them, nor the founder in anye sorte be indamaged by them—which shalbe made playne by reasons hearafter enswinge in place fytt for the same." [Here the disadvantages of regular fortresses are described.]

"Suche a worke, with bulwarkes flancked but close, for that they ar to be dwelte in, is humbly hearin propounded to your Majestie, the same to be drawen alonge the whole Scottyshe Border, by a contynewall trenche dystended from the easterne to the westerne sea, and strechinge to 80 myles in lengthe or thereaboutes. The forme whearof dyfferinge from the common sorte, must carrye in yt certayne specyall poyntes for offence and defence, proper to the arte of forteficacion, more curions in forme, then eyther costlie in matter or dyficultye in workinge, yet of singuler effectes as is above sayde."

[Three objections, (1) the impossibility (2) the cost, even if possible, and (3) that the garrison will be "unsupportable"—follow, and the first is thus dealt with.]

"Cesar made a rampyour with a wall of 24 myles in length with a dyche of 120 foote brode and 33 foote heye, with the laboure of one onlye legione which was called 'the Pretoryan,' and that onlye in 30 dayes. This rampyour had upon yt 48 square towers called castells of massyve stone, and eche tower of greate spacyousnes. This wall he made to defende Fraunce which then was appoynted for his province, from the inundaciones of the Swysers who used at tymes to invade the saide province with 300,000 persons in one armey at once. The monumentes hearof remaynethe yet to be seene by Geneva.

A farr greater worke and of later tyme, was made by the princes of Grecia against the firste growinge greatnes of the Turkes, and streched in lengthe above 360 myles; which worke had wrought the desired effecte, and had for ever excluded the Turke out of Grece, had not the mallyce of one Despotes, partlye thoroughe ambytion, but cheeflye thoroughe envye, layenge open the rampyour which passed thorowghe his terrytorie, geven passadge to the whole armey of the Turke, and soe made all the other worke frustrate. A therde presidente there is, which is heare at home, within your Majesties domynions and even within the boundes of the same contrye wheare the like is nowe propounded, but in another forme because of the alteracions that tyme hathe made in all martiall actions eyther offensyve or defensvye.—The same is 'Pightes wall' in Northomberlande, which was made by the Romaynes, beinge of massyve wall at the leaste 16 foote in thicknes, with many square towers upon yt, and passinge thoroughe parte of Newcastell, dyd streche from the one sea unto the other, aboute 80 myles.

The Romaynes were at the travayle to make this wall and that at that tyme to be defended from the dayly and daungerous incurtyous of the valyannte barberous Scottyshe nation; but the cuntry them selves was at the cherdge of the makinge of yt, which they were contented to doe as well for their owne more safftie, as by compulsione of the Romaynes, who were their maysters. Soe hearbye is reffelled the firste objection touchinge the impossybyllytye." [The constitution of a Roman legion, is explained—6000 foot, and six hundred horse, the latter exempt from handling "the mattock and the spade"—and the foot working by a thousand men daily, finished the wall in France in 30 days. The Pightes wall, according to the same ratio, would cost when made, about 19,000l. sterling. The same work at this day cannot cost the Queen more than 30,000l. sterling.

In the third chapter referring to "the simple grounde platt heare unto anexed," it is shown that the "skonses" are to be planted on the wall at least a mile distant from each other, and closed in the inside next England, being intended for habitation—fortified towards Scotland to resist artillery, but next England merely with a "thynne wall," to resist assaults without cannon. Each "skonse" will thus require a separate siege by an invading army, and the loss of fewer "than a half of a dozen of them" at once, can do little harm to England.

In the fourth chapter it is pointed out—that the Scottish forays will be thus prevented, while an English regular force or "incurtion" may at any time invade Scotland. The Queen is advised to assign 1000 acres of land adjoining each "inskonse," at one penny an acre, as "a prefermente and a good bargaine," to the gentlemen appointed to defend it—the only paid men in each, being 10 soldiers "greate gonners."]

"A therde commodytye farre excedinge all the reste, is this, that a border, once beinge so fortefyede as above is sayde, yt wyll soe dyscover the unhabyllytye of the Skottes, any waye in theyr accostomed manner, eyther to make incurtyons or invacyons, or any other enterye in any foote of Inglyshe grownde, that neyther the Frenche Kinge wyll have greate lyste to cherdge his crowne any longer with the mayntaynaunce of that kingdome to be a brydell for this estate, neyther wyll the Kinge of Spayne be any thinge hastye to enter into newe leage that waye. The commodytye whearof of yt self is suffycyente to covntervayle the resedue of the chardge that your Majesty is to be at hearin."

[The objection that the Scottish navy might land an army of 20,000 men, and turn the flank of the fortification, is met by showing, that such a Scottish force was never hitherto seen or heard of, that "yt is oddes the sayde fleete wyll never touche the pretended forte"—that even if it landed safely, or with "meane resystaunce," one half of the force would "never come to serve anye torne for him" (fn. 5) —and as there could be no horsemen with them, the invaders after using the "victualls in their pockettes," must either starve or surrender.

Any idea of traitorous succour to such invaders, is dismissed, but should there be, "there is noe remedye but onlye betyme to fynde out, and to cutt of the traytors before theye come to theyr entended execution." Concluding thus]— "But this maye verye well be thought, that yf before hande suche a border (as ys before saide) be erected and establyshed, yt woulde bothe kyll the hartes of traytors heare at home, and also abate the courradge of a farre more pusaunte prince then the Skottyshe Kinge ys, or anye of his complyces, to adventure subjectes frendes and forces upon soe fycle and uncertayne poyntes of suche a trayterous partie as shalbe sufficiente to geve them landinge and enterye, with everie other supplye, that your Majestie shall have store of, upon the faylinge whearof in the whole or in parte, eyther on theyr owne partes or on the parte of theyr faction heare, the maye yelde them selves before hande unavoydably rewyned and utterlye overthrowen and spoyled, which the Almightye defende your Majestie from, and sende to befall to those your enemyes whearsoever they are and who soever they bee, which doe in theyr endevors procure, or in theyr hartes desire, the same to your Majestie, whom he in his mercye blesse with all heavenlye and temperall blessinges." Unsigned and without date.

20 pp. In two hands. One apparently Hunsdon's clerk.

Annexed to the foregoing, is:—

A ground plan and bird's eye view of the proposed fortification, coloured, with table of references to the different parts. Damaged.

Title:—"A bye platte expressing the uprighte of halfe the sconce."


  • 1. These two sentences interlined by Hunsdon.
  • 2. Burghley notes here, "Al. Hume."
  • 3. These five words substituted for a line and a half carefully cancelled by Hunsdon.
  • 4. Probably the Irvings of Gretnay.
  • 5. The Scottish King.