Cecil Papers: January 1608, 1-15

Pages 1-20

Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House: Volume 20, 1608. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1968.

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January 1608, 1-15

Sir Henry Neville to [the Earl of Salisbury]
1607–8, Jan. 1. Being fallen into a great cold and not able to wait upon him, and the Quarter Sessions drawing on, which will be the fittest time to sound men's dispositions in the matter Salisbury communicated to him, he prays clear direction in some points concerning that business. First, shall he cause any to be dealt with now but only gentlemen, and if none but gentlemen, what is the lowest price to be set them for all charges to the King and otherwise? Next, if he shall treat with any of inferior quality, what their lowest rate shall be in like manner; and whether he may not taste them about the exemption from the churchwardenship likewise, and try what they will give for both? Lastly, whether all gentlemen that be desirous of it shall compound at the same rate, or what difference shall be made. Because he desires much the expediting of this service, he will once more offer to consideration that it will not be amiss to give the exemption gratis unto some principal man in every shire to whom Salisbury will commit the chief trust of the business, so to draw on the rest. If Salisbury will not do it generally, he beseeches it may be afforded him and he will make good use of it. For when he has professed to many that he meant to make such an exemption, other of his rank have told him that they would do so too.
Further, he understands out of the country that Mr Welden, one of those whom he named, will be contented to give 10l for the exemption so as he may be at no further charge. The rest stick at it, but have promised to send him their resolution shortly. This Mr Welden is a man that has never served in any jury, neither does he think him for his capacity for to serve. If Salisbury thinks well of his offer he may have his patent yet before the Sessions, which is the Tuesday after Twelfth day; and being published there it will hasten men's resolutions much, as he supposes.—From Dacre House, this first of January 1607.
Holograph. 1 p. [Printed in extenso in Lodge, Illustrations etc. Vol. III, pp. 338, 339.] (120 1.)
Captain J. Ouseley to the Earl of Salisbury
[? 1607–8, Jan. 1.] Pardon my boldness both for my lines and poor New Year's gift. Despise not your faithful soldier's mite, but let me have your noble favour and good opinion.—Undated.
Holograph. Endorsed: "1607." ½ p. (194. 72.)
Sir Henry Neville to the Earl of Salisbury
[? 1607–8, probably after Jan. 1.] Mr Welden and Mr Day desire to proceed for their exemption, and have left 10l apiece with him. If Salisbury thinks it not sufficient, he will add 40s for either of them rather than they should be put off. Has not dealt with more, but hears from those he has used in the country that many of the inferior sort hearken after it, and will be very ready to embrace it when it shall be offered them at reasonable rates, as 6l, 7l and 8l, and from men of that sort it is that the mass must rise. When the form of the patent is once agreed of and drawn by Mr Attorney, some officer might make all the rest by that form, as it was in the coronation pardons, and so to pass the Great Seal immediately. This term is not long and the assizes follow presently after.—Undated.
Holograph. 1 p. [Printed in extenso in Lodge, Illustrations etc., Vol. III, 340.] (124 100.)
Thomas Duff to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 2. I do hear that Matthew Tully is in London. If you will command any further knowledge herein, sending me direction to that effect, I will be ready to do you any service in my power.— From the loathsome hole of the Counter in Wood Street, 2 Jan. 1607.
Holograph. ⅓ p. (120 2.)
Newsletter from Madrid
1607–8, Jan. 2/12. Headed: "Copie a copie" The following communicated to us by one of the magistrates of this town of Middelburgh is an extract from a letter dated Madrid, 12 January last, and we are assured that it was written by a person very well esteemed in Middelburgh.
Madrid, 12 January, 1608. I heard the following facts on the 11th in conversation with persons of quality. They are secret, but I think you should be informed of them. Negotiations have taken place through Don Pedro de Zuniga, the King's Ambassador to England, for the purchase of an important deep water port in Holland or Zeeland. 50,000 crowns [sic] have been remitted to him for this purpose, which Heaven forbid! The place intended is Brill, so far as I can make out. I went immediately to the English Ambassador to ask if he had intelligence what these extraordinary posts from England brought. He said, "No". I told him what I had heard and named my authority. He said he had since had news that Don Pedro had received the 50,000 ducats [sic]. The matter is clearly of great importance.
Dutch. 2 pp. (120 3) [Subjoined: Certificate of collation with copy, 10 March, 1608. Bosschently. Dutch. ½ p.] (120 4.)
Sir John Ogle to [the Earl of Salisbury]
1607–8, Jan. 4/14. Upon the return of the trumpeters with letters from the Archdukes, importing the acceptance of their proposition for continuance of the truce, together with the nomination of such as are to come from thence to treat, who were listed—Mançedor, the Marquis Spinola, Richardot, John Noyen and Verreyken—there was some time spent in consultation about the admitting of Spinola, and the rather because they had, in their letters sent before, as much as excepted against him; but at length it was found good that he should be received with the rest, and for that purpose are there letters dispatched to the governors of Bergen op Zoom and Breda for the entertaining of him and his train.
Some will say that the Gryffier Aertsens has been somewhat to blame again in the carriage of this business, and that the enemy took their advantage of his manner of writing concerning the clause of excluding the Marquis. But those whom I give best credit unto say, that it was sufficiently enough insinuated to the Archdukes that they did not desire to have any one that had been qualified with the title of Chef de guerre for the King of Spain, to be employed hither in this business. Yet since it has seemed good to them to make use of his service in this respect the Estates would not press a further denial, for that, say they, would carry a show as if they had some strange apprehension of his working wonders, more than other men. Therefore, since they had given consent for 2 strangers (whereof there must be but one Spaniard), they are likewise content to admit of him. About the last of this month (after this style) they are expected here; in the meantime, their lodgings are appointed for them. The apprehension of the peace is much enlarged by his coming, for most men think he would not engage himself into an action of this nature if he did not think to receive much honour by it; and the greatest that he can have is to effect the design of him that sends him, and that, all men believe, is peace.
One principal difficulty which discourse has long thought would present itself in the treaty, opinion begins now to meet with and make plain; and that is the traffic into the East Indies which (by advice from Spain) they say will be easily passed with the rest of other articles. They ground their reason thus; the main point in peace must be had that the West Indies be not too nearly looked into. Now for the East Indies they concern not Spain so nearly, and for these men to quit what they have already there, that they do not dream they will do, in regard also of their octroi to the East India Company which must yet stand good to them for many years, by contract with the Estates. On the other side, they flatter themselves with the hope of diverting these men from those parts in time, and that by the free traffic into Spain, whither the return shall be much shorter and the gain not less which men shall make, considering all charge. Thus some think this point will not be much insisted on, but shall go accordingly as with Great Britain and France, and that they may repair thither on their hazard at least. The manner of proceeding in the business of first excluding and since accepting the Marquis Spinola makes divers men speak diversely. Some are not without suspicion there is juggling and packing under hand. I think the Commissioners for his Majesty are of this number, and that is the rather increased in them (I speak under correction of your better knowledge and with due regard of them) by an opinion they are thought to have, that there is more communication to the French than to them in the secrets of business; which jealousy arises not from any true ground given by the State, but of the confidence which they see the French have of these men and their proceedings. This confidence in the French they think comes of the knowledge of matters, and that the like is not communicated to them.
For mine own part (you will pardon my boldness that I should presume to set to my censure in matter of such weight, since if it can do no good it does no hurt), I am certainly persuaded, and I doubt not but your Lordship shall see it so in the end, that the dealings of these men are so full of integrity in this handling with the enemy, that let the issue be what God will have it, peace or war, they will make an honourable conclusion of the matter. I will not say but that their respects to some princes, their best patrons, might at the entry into this business (and perhaps since) have been better acknowledged; and it may be thought that this neglect of theirs may be cause to draw harder censure, and that not altogether unjustly, even upon their now justest actions. But this I surely believe (and hold it in a manner otherwise impossible, considering the quality of this government), that these men do no way entertain any indirect courses with the enemy, nor that the peace is desired nor will be effected otherwise than that it shall be seen to the world that it was (in all appearance) to the public good, and that it was not for men making profession of religion as they do to continue the war longer without the just imputation of men desirous to live in blood. And this censure they think they cannot shun if they may have such a peace as they expect and yet should refuse it. I hope my letters will come to you when you have few others to read, or at some good hour of leisure; otherwise I fear I have taken too much liberty in being so large.—Haghe, Jan. 14, 1608. stilo novo.
Holograph. Endorsed: "1607." 4 pp. (120 14.)
The Earl of Dunfermline to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 5. I write to give you particular occasion to take particular trial of this bearer, Mr Doubleday, of the nature and estate of our silver mine in this country, for he can do it far better nor I or any other I know. By his commission he has had as deep insight in these matters, and appears to us here to go in judgment as far and farther nor others [who] profess to know more nor he does.
As to myself I profess plain ignorance of all experience in these "subterraneall" works and minerals. The Council here has thought expedient to cause make some trial of the nature of this ore, in the best form our most experimented men can use such works. I think to be present at the trial myself, and shortly after shall, God willing, advertise you what our men find. Albeit I am in opinion that none of our trials in such matters can carry any great certainty; for it may very readily fall that neither shall our trial of one hundred pounds weight be "conforme" to the trial to be taken there of the ten tons of transported ore, nor any of them answerable in all with the rest of the mine. There is in such matters but probabilities, for all is not alike. The elements whereof their mixtures are "componed" are not in a like purity "all whair", and do not mix "all whair" alike. This I hear indeed, that this mine the deeper it goes, gives ever the better appearance in fineness, and so I read of all fine silver mines, that commonly they ever mend the farther they go down. I will hope with you this be a blessing reserved "all bigane aageo" to our most gracious Sovereign with many more, more singular and of greater importance both to his honor and commodity.—Edinburgh, 5 Jan. 1608.
P.S. I cannot omit to signify unto you that my brother-in-law, my Lord Earl of Perth has made me such report of your courtesies to him as he thinks himself not able to acquit, professing therefore to be your most affectionate and bound in all duty.
Holograph. Endorsed: "1607." 1½ pp. (120 6.)
[Sir Thomas Edmondes to the Earl of Salisbury]
1607–8, Jan. 6. Spinola appointed to go commissioner for the peace into Holland much envied by the Spaniards. The order came from Spain forbidding payments to pensioners, and extending the same to such only as are in actual service; breeds much discontentment. The payment of the pensioners amounts to 730,600 crowns and odd monthly. The Duke of Parma was allowed only 150,000 crowns by the month for the whole charges of the war. Tyrone hath sent Macguire before to Rome; this afterwards contraried.
Abstract. (227 p. 340.)
The Count of Emden to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 6. Salisbury's benefits to himself, his wife and province cannot be sufficiently compensated, since he was both counseller and author that the King of Great Britain should restore peace to his province and quiet the disturbances there; to accomplish which he had given Sir Ralph Winwood full authority. Will respond to those benefits by deeds, not words, as long as life shall last. Has not been negligent in sending the horses long since promised, but the disturbers had besieged all his ports and he had either to break through them, from which Winwood dissuaded him, or must have sought permission from the besiegers, which would have impaired his right and dignity. Has preferred to keep them quietly in port awhile rather than lose them with peril of the province and injury of his estate. Will send them as soon as he can safely.—Essen, 6 Jan. 1607.
Signed. Latin. 22/3 pp. (120 7.)
Noel de Caron to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 6. With good wishes for the New Year. Sends a present of preserved fruit. His last letters from the Hague are of the 30th ultimo. By them he understands that they are awaiting the Archdukes' commissioners, having prolonged the truce for a month or six weeks at the Archdukes' choice. They are resolved, they tell him, not to proceed to the other conditions of the treaty until they have the full avowal of their sovereignty. This he cannot well understand, to tell the truth, seeing they have already sent to Brussels for the commissioners to treat.—"Suydt Lambeth, 6 Janvier, 1607."
Holograph. French. 1 p. (193 61.)
Joseph Creswell to Sir Charles Cornwallis
1607–8, Jan. 7/17. I send this because I had no opportunity of giving you a satisfactory answer to your complaint in the presence of Don Francisco de Mena.
I do not quite understand what your complaint is, since it was made in general words, but I understand you to say that letters had come in Don Pedro de Zuniga's dispatch (pliejo) containing expressions derogatory to the King of England and some of his ministers, that you could not suppose that I approved such a thing, and that an ambassador was bound to reciprocate the courtesy with which he was treated. I know nothing of all this, but if you will give me the necessary information, I will make inquiries, and you can take up the matter later on when you think proper, and have good ground of complaint.
But I know by experience that there are busybodies who spread reports, for instance, that you had said what it appears you did not say about Don Pedro de Zuniga. Again what they told you about the money sent to Don Pedro de Zuniga was equally false. I have made inquiries and find that nothing beyond his necessary expenses has been sent him for a long time, and the 10,000 ducats which the King gave him some days ago has not yet been sent.
I have heard that some of the Englishmen who apply to me for assistance in their law suits invent stories which they father on me on their return to England, whereas I never talk to them except about their own affairs or on religious matters: and even so I say nothing which I could not say before you or the King, or still more willingly in London itself. I would gladly close my doors to them, but that the King of Spain and his ministers wish justice to be done to all men. It is not always easy to find out the truth, and I should consequently be glad to have peace with Holland, which would put an end to all the searches for contraband out of which these difficulties arise. The sufferers may well charge what they suffer on those who foment the Dutch rebellion.
Moreover, I have seen many of Don Pedro de Zuniga's letters and never have seen one in which the Kings of England or their ministers were disrespectfully mentioned. As for me, I always speak of all men with respect and avoid all disputes about words. I have no need to speak ill of any, having received as I might say salutem ex inimicis. I write in Spanish in order that you may be able to send this very paper to Don Pedro de Zuniga. Will you be so good as to write your reply in the margin, so that full satisfaction may be given you in case you should not already have been undeceived.—The College, [? Valladolid] 7/17 Jan. 1608.
Holograph. Spanish. Half-margin. 3 pp. (126 100)
John Moore to Robert Savage, merchant in London
1607–8, Jan. 7/17. In Dansick, the 17th of January, 1608, stilo novo. I have not of long time written to you, first for that since August last I have not received any from you; secondly, for that since my last there has chanced here no alteration in state or trade worth the writing of; thirdly, for that I doubt not your servant Paule Tracie has advertised you at large from time to time of all matters.
The chief cause now of my writing is to excuse myself of the blame unjustly laid upon me. First, I understand that Paule Tracie reported that you are greatly offended with me about the masts bought by Mr Monnox; secondly, for that your affairs here were not managed according to your expectation in 1606 and 1607.
Concerning the buying of the masts, I had not to do with it, although by chance I was present at the bargain making and then counselling Mr Monnox to have them turned over. He willed me to be quiet for he should have them a good pennyworth. Of this I have long since written you at large. The parting was done by such men as daily deal with that commodity, who after they had parted them protested they knew no difference between them. As for the lots they were as uprightly cast as might be.
As for your affairs, if the profits prove less than you expected, I might allege the badness of the time which for sales and returns was as bad as may be. And so is this year like to prove. For 1606, so long as my counsel was followed, your commodities were not mortgaged but sold as dear for ready money as any man's; no bad debts made, your stock or money not kept in cash to look upon or to chop and change with, but employed in such commodities as you wrote for and returned according to your order with as much speed as might be, so that the stock which remained the winter over was very small. This I thought best both for you and your servant; for you, by employing it the winter over for some other place for your profit; for him, being without money, to be earnester in his study to attain the Dutch tongue. This last fell out according to my expectation and, also, whereas Paule Tracie before was very ignorant both in merchandise and keeping accounts, through my pains he was reasonably well instructed in both for the shortness of time.
As for 1607, so soon as Paule Tracie had received and read his letterby the Union he took me aside and willed me not to meddle with anys thing, for he thought himself sufficient to manage those affairs. Counselling him not to presume too much upon one year's experience, he took those words very evil, and went about his affairs keeping all his proceedings in buying and selling so secret from me as might be, as I knew not where he had housed any of the goods. Until by chance I came by his cellar, and seeing it a cellar very unfit for that commodity, being fruit, I counselled him to remove it into some other place. Which he did, but not speedily as I wished. After, he falling sick of an ague requested me to get the ship laden. Which I did and therein incurred Frances Goodwin's displeasure, partly for that I was against it that his wainscots should be carried so good cheap freight, but chiefly for that I would not have eighteen rings of your and Mr Willem's clapboards left out, and suffer him to fill up the ship with pipestaves at 51 per great hundred freight. Whereupon he threatened me to "do my arant" unto you. For lading and clearing away of that ship your servant allowed me for both the accounts 14 florins, whereof 6 he paid me and 8 he detained upon my debt unto you, whereof I would gladly know whether he has written you or no. Since the departure of that ship I have not been acquainted with any of his proceedings, more than what I hear of strangers; nay, every broker in the town is more acquainted with his dealings than I am, and no marvel, for it is now a general rule, he that is conversant with the master by writing is no broker for the servant or factor. By cause I shall be less acquainted with his dealings, he has taken his lodging in the town far enough from me. If it may prove for your profit and his good I shall be very glad, but vix credo. I offered him to have taken one florin per week for his diet and to have shortened the rest upon my debt, but he would not accept thereof.
Some merchants love to have their goods lie long in their packhouse and to have them blown upon by all men, which makes them so blind, they cannot see when they be well offered for them. Other some have such a delight in looking upon and telling over their money, that it makes them so forgetful that they never or seldom remember to make employment thereof in due time. With the last point I think neither Paule Tracie nor Frances Goodwin is acquainted, but the first point they have both learned very perfectly, as experience has proved this summer in divers parcels.
Now for other matters. For sales of English commodities, especially of cloth, the time is yet as bad as it was in the summer, and is like so to continue the next summer. Though the merchants have of late bought up great store, yet is it not therefore to be supposed that they will be the better sold in the spring, for the cheap cloth and the long time, 16, 18 and 20 months' day [?date] has made them buy so much as they have done. Torne market, which began the 6th and is to continue unto the 20th instant, was by reason of the fair way thought by all men to have proved an extraordinary good market; but contrary to expectation, for three days past, being the 14th, there was nothing to do or very little, especially for cloth. As for tin, it is now worth 26 florins per hundred and so like to continue, and so might your last have been sold if Paule Tracie could have seen when he was well offered. Grey and black coney with lambskins, fox cases and all skinners' wares are like once the next summer to bear a good price.
The winter is, and for a time has been, excellent good. Hard frosts with snow enough, so as for carriage we have not had the like in seven years before. The ways be so good as possible may be, which to all men's judgments will be an occasion for bringing down of an extraordinary quantity of wood commodities as ashes, pitch, tar, clapboards, wainscots, masts, pipestaves and timber in the summer. For having good way they will slip no time to get them to the waterside, and no doubt but in the spring they shall have water enough, want whereof has been a greater let unto their bringing down those commodities any time these three years. So that those commodities are very like to fall somewhat of price in June or July, for before that time the great quantity can hardly get down, they are so high up in the country. But if the Hollanders make peace with Spain, then will they spoil all again. For they will lay on load, for they bring for the most part ready money by which they have after 30 or more per cent profit. For their ducat which there is coined to the value of a Spanish ducat, which since my time went here but for 54 ge (fn. 1), is now current for 68, and like before April to come to 70 ge the piece. And that is the coin which chiefly they bring hither. What will follow the time will try.
As for the state of the country, the vulgar report is that it is now as bad and stands as dangerous as it has been at any time yet. For this is certain, that the King remains resolute and will not yield to anything, and the Rocasanors remain as resolute by their propositions. Also divers of the nobility, which held with the King, as divers which hitherto held themselves neuters, are also fallen now to the Roccas, and a day of meeting is appointed amongst them which is the 28th inst near Lubline. What there will be concluded the time will manifest. If the merchants may keep their market there in quiet, it will be a good help to the sale of their commodities, for at that time is the chiefest of the markets at Lubline. Also here is a flying news that they should have nominated three in election, the first Sigismundus III. This King, so as he will be again sworn and crowned, then he shall have it. Which if he refuses, the Pan Krokofskye or in English the Duke of Krakow. If he refuses, then they will take young Stephanus Battori. This is in divers men's mouths, but I do not believe it but rather think it a mere fable.
Holograph. 3½ pp. (194 109.)
The Earl of Dorset, Lord Treasurer, to the Earl of Salisbury
[? 1607–8, Jan. 8.] I will not fail to be with you in your chamber at 3 of the clock after dinner, as most ready to attend the course that may keep to these miserable wants.—8 January.
Holograph. ½ p. (130 128.)
Noel de Caron to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 8. Allow me this liberty I take of good fellowship (l'hardy compagnon) in sending your Lordship half of the present I have received from Bruges, my native town, of a couple of capons sent me by my nephew de Boodt, whom they have now made first Burgomaster of Bruges. I see he sends another couple to Monsieur d'Hoboocq, about which Monsieur Sailly makes me laugh for he says Hoboocq's have run a risk (ont couru fortune) because he has been doubtful whether he ought to declare them as ransom(?) (fn. 2) Thus the world changes, that at one stroke and from one place presents are sent to public persons so diverse! The letter of the Seigneur de Sailly I have inserted with that of my nephew in this, so that you may see what Sailly writes and also how the Burgomaster now addresses me, calling me Ambassador of the Free Provinces as I understand they now call our Estates throughout the whole of Flanders.—Suydt Lambet, 8 Janvier, 1607.
Holograph. French. 1 p. (193 62.)
Jewels for the Queen
1607–8, Jan. 8. Privy seal for payment of 3200l, upon certificate of the Lord Chamberlain and the Earl of Salisbury, for certain jewels and pearls provided for the Queen, the Lady Elizabeth and the Duke of York, at New Year's Tide last, by Humfrey Fludd, Abraham de Kendar, Peter James and — Harris, 8 Jan. 1607.
Contemporary draft or copy. 1 p. (193 63.)
Sir George St Paul to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 9. I am ashamed that my slackness in sending the hind, which is half horned, should occasion you to remember me thereof again. My intention was better than my action, for I meant to have sent her accompanied with a calf, because the King desired, as I heard, to have a calf of her, and I purposed you should have both to dispose at your pleasure. But now I think it better to send her as she is than to stay in expectance of her uncertain issue. I will send her forwards next week.—Mellwood, 9 Jan. 1607.
Holograph. 1 p. (120 9.)
Petition of Guillaume Bouillon to the King of France and his Council
1607–8, Jan. 9/19. Guillaume Bouillon, merchant of Coustances in Normandy, shows that on returning from a voyage he made to Lisbon in Portugal, being in a vessel of the Isle of Jersey named Le Francois, of the burden of 50 tons or thereabouts, passing near the coast of England, he was attacked and seized by an English pirate named Thomas Pin and others of his company, who took all the merchandise petitioner was carrying in his ship, amounting at least to the value of 8280l. Upon information which he had that the pirates were armed and victualled a little before in the port of Plymouth in England by leave of Richard Haquin (Hawkins), Vice-Admiral at that place, petitioner went there and caused to be apprehended one of the pirates, and besides demanded of Haquin the restitution of part of the merchandise as he had it in his possession; who restored him some part, which could not amount to 200l at most, and the surplus he retained. This constrained petitioner to have recourse to the Lords of the Council in London, who by their Commission of October 24, 1604, permitted him to apprehend the pirates and those who had bought and concealed the said merchandise. By virtue whereof he forthwith went to Plymouth, and again caused one of the pirates to be apprehended and their victualler, found at the dwelling of the said Vice-Admiral. In anger at this the Vice-Admiral, not content with having caused one of the pirates to escape, by a manifest contravention of the ordinances of the Admiralty, permitted their captain to victual his ship which was at the entrance to Plymouth, to unload the merchandise stolen by him from petitioner and transport them where he liked, flatly denying him justice, so that Bouillon from the Vice-Admiral's refusal could do nothing else than complain to the Mayor of Plymouth; before whom the boatmen, having appeared, declared they had boarded the vessel of the said Pin, captain of the pirates, and had brought away with them some sugar, peppers and other merchandise packed in barrels, part of which the officers of the Mayor had seized in the hands of the said boatmen, the other part remained with the said Vice-Admiral in payment of the provisions by him sent to Captain Pin, as the boatmen deposed. They also deposed they had carried in their boat one William Frais, a servant of the Vice-Admiral's, carrying the said provisions; which are pure thefts and piracies too odious to justice, specially in the person of him who is the judge thereof, who instead of bringing to it moderation and temperance according to the ordinances, makes himself an accomplice of these evil designs which he has caused to succeed to the disadvantage and ruin of petitioner. For after having kept him three years and more prosecuting the restitution of his merchandise thus stolen, after having made him consume all the rest of his property and employ the credit of his friends to support the cost of the suits, petitioner had recovered the captain of the pirates; and having left him in the keeping of an usher at London, the Judge of the Admiralty there by the correspondence there is between him and the Vice-Admiral of Plymouth being advertised of the taking of the said pirates, fearing to be discovered in their schemes, he caused him to be made prisoner, nevertheless afterwards acknowledging the theft made by him he agreed with petitioner for the sum of 3800l for part of the merchandise taken by him; the said agreement [being] made in the presence of the secretary of de Beaumont, then Ambassador for your Majesty, and others who were present besides him. And inasmuch as by means of the said agreement one could have certain knowledge as well of those who had taken the merchandise as of the place where it then was; which not desiring, the said Judge excused himself to petitioner from helping him, inasmuch, said he, as the will of the King of England was that the said pirate should be executed. So that after having verbally promised petitioner to pay him of his own what the said agreement should amount to, and for the surplus beyond the agreement, that he should have the confiscation of the said pirate's goods; under these fine offers he caused him to be bound in 1000l to prosecute the said pirate according to the law of the country—which was Bouillon's intention, who demanded nothing else but what had been stolen from him. And notwithstanding that he did not wish to become a party to prosecuting the pirate criminally because the Sieur de Beaumont had prayed the said Judge not to condemn him to death, nevertheless with extraordinary precipitation on the morrow the said pirate was executed, the victualler of the ship discharged and the said Judge and Officers of the Admiralty seised as well of the goods of the executed as of petitioner's merchandise, which had been placed in the hands of the Mayor of Plymouth; which they have converted to their own use, even (which is much the most extraordinary thing) having compounded with those who had bought and concealed the said merchandise. And not content with having reduced this poor merchant to extremity and almost to despair, upon the complaints he made to the said Judge of the Admiralty of this execution, and instead of restoring his merchandise or the price thereof as he had promised, he rifled (dillapidoit) with his officers all the goods of the executed pirate, parted and wasted all that petitioner had been able to recover of his merchandise. The said Judge instead of pity and compassion, had so turned his face from justice, that upon petitioner's saying he should complain to his Majesty he caused him to be made prisoner, where he would have remained a long time but for the succour of the Sieur de Beaumont who caused him to come out of the said prison afterwards. And some time after petitioner had caused to be apprehended a man named Squilton [Skelton], lieutenant of him who was executed, whatever proof he made against him, whatever petition, whatever Sieur de la Boderie, now Ambassador in that country, could do, it has not been possible for petitioner to obtain any right, so that not even with great pains had he been able to find a proctor or advocate who was willing to help him with his counsel, for the fear they have of doing anything which could displease the Lord Admiral. For this cause, Sire, and because by the annexed list will appear to you the depredations and extraordinary piracies which are committed upon the said coast of England, in regard to the merchants of your realm, who being no longer able to support such risks and so frequent encounters, will in the end be constrained to quit their traffic to the great prejudice of the public and of your estate. Moreover, because it is not reasonable that the said Judges of the Admiralty should profit by the thefts of the pirates from the merchants of your realm, it being certain that although there may be confiscation of body and goods against the pirates, the Admiral and his officers can have no claim thereto (n'y peuvent rien pretendre), in addition that on the other hand the merchants interested are not satisfied for what has been taken and stolen from them with all their expenses, damages and interest; may it please your Majesty to direct (ordonner) that the said Admiral of England and his officers be compelled to restore the merchandise so stolen to petitioner, for having had them in their possession and disposed of them as they pleased, seeing moreover that they have had the confiscation of him who had plundered them; otherwise to pay petitioner the said sum of 8000l to which the merchandise was found to amount, with all expenses, damages and interest; or at least to grant him right of reprisal upon the first English merchant he shall find in your realm, which is the only means he can hope from your Majesty to have reparation for the wrong and injury done him; and, moreover, that the present request be communicated to the Ambassador of England on his behalf, and upon the contents thereof that provision be made for assurance of the commerce and traffic of your subjects as is reasonable.
Underwritten. It is ordered that the present request be communicated to the Ambassador of the King of Great Britain in order that, when the answer is received, order may be taken upon the contents of this present as shall appertain according to right. Done at the King's Council of State held at Paris, 19 January 1608.
Copy. French. 3 pp. (125 11.)
Annexed (1) Certificate of de Beaumont, French Ambassador in England. Guillaume Bouillon, French merchant, after having spent a year and a half in this kingdom and with much expense prosecuted and caused to be apprehended the English pirates who had plundered him at sea, seeing that of the goods of the said pirates, who were executed, he could obtain nothing to compensate his losses, has required of us at our departure from this realm this certificate, which we have granted him to be of what service and value to him is right.—London, 3 November, 1605.
Copy. French. ⅓ p. (125 12)
(2) Certificate of de la Boderie, French Ambassador in England. That on his arrival to the King of Great Britain, he found a French merchant named Bouillon prosecuting certain piracies committed upon him at sea by English pirates; who after having sojourned sixteen months [sic] was constrained for the little profit he gained by his suits to return to France.—London, 5 September, 1607.
Copy. French. ⅓ p. (125 12.)
(3) Statement of French vessels which have been taken and carried off by pirates in the ports and harbours of England, since the coming of Mons. de le Boderie, Ambassador of his [French] Majesty.
The ship of Estienne Berault, of St Gilles in Poitou, laden with wheat and taken to Plymouth by pirates, and seized by the Vice-Admiral of that place without having arrested the pirates.
Jacques Billoteau, of St Gilles in Poitou, returning from Spain laden with salt and 1500 crowns in silver, taken by the pirates and carried to Portsmouth, where the officers of the Admiral sold the salt and received the silver without the merchants having had any compensation.
The ship of Jacques Geffroy and Isaac Thebault, of St Gilles, taken by pirates, being of the value of 36,000l, and after the seizure some of the pirates came to England, where they took eight who might have been found possessed of 8000l or 9000l, although by their examinations they only confessed to 5000l, which gold and silver the officers of the Admiral have had, except and saving 900l, which they delivered to the merchants; which 900l they have spent as well in taking the pirates to London as in prosecuting them according to law.
Pierre Bottins, of St Gilles, taken and plundered by pirates of 5 barrels of cochineal and some quantity of ginger; and after the seizure the pirates came to an anchor at the entrance to Plymouth, where the Vice-Admiral and the secretary of the Admiral took part of the cochineal and caused it to be sold.
The ship of Jehan Basset, of Aulonne (Oleron), taken by pirates returning from the Strait, in which was 15,000l in money; and after the seizure the pirates came to anchor with their vessel at the entrance of Plymouth, where the secretary of the Admiral went on board. And afterwards the pirate came to a place called Sailcum (Salcombe), where he was victualled, and then returned to sea with the French ship.
The ship of Michel Blauchet, of Aulonne, taken by pirates, laden with wheat, taken away and found at Zeeland, without having arrested the pirates.
The ship of Estienne Tuichet, of Aulonne, seized by pirates, laden with wheat, taken off and found in England, without having taken the pirates.
The ship of M. Michau and M. le Breton, of Aulonne, seized by the pirates, carried off and found in England in the port of Helfort, by one named Captain Jemminer, who was condemned to be hanged and since released by the Admiral.
The ship of Estienne Bisson, of Havre de Grace, seized by English pirates in Barbary, in the roads of Safy, of the value of 50,000l, and after having sold the merchandise they came into England, to the port and harbour of Liffrecou [sic] with the vessel and money; where the Vice-Admiral of the place, named Millord Boer, took 17 of the pirates; and after taking what money they had, let 15 of them escape, of whom the said Captain Jemminer was one.
A ship of La Rochelle seized by pirates, laden with sugar, ginger and carried off into Ireland.
Two barks of St Jehan de Lux taken by the pirates, laden with wool and carried off to the entrance of Plymouth, where the said wool was unloaded.
A bark of Marennes taken by pirates, laden with Spanish wine and some money, in the harbour of Plymouth and under the protection both of the town and the castle, and thereafter found in the river of Hampton (Southampton) all dismantled.
Another bark of Marennes taken in the harbour of "Foilouur" by pirates, and thereafter found at Harwich.
Two barks breached by the sea (á la brecque á l'eau), taken and pillaged by English pirates, whereby present petitioner was damaged in 900l.
A bark of Granville taken and boarded at the entrance to Plymouth, where the pirates were anchored, and killed the principal merchant and threw him into the sea, after having taken what there was in the said ship; and after the seizure the pirates returned to anchor at the place from which they started and sold the merchandise.
Copy. French. 1½ pp. (125 13) The above documents are all in the same handwriting
(4) The answer of this Ambassador of his Majesty of Great Britain concerning the petition of Guillaume Bouillon delivered unto him by Mons. d'Interville, one of the Clerks of the Council of France.
This complaint has heretofore been exhibited by the French Ambassador now residing in England, and has received answer thereunto, which was also delivered to the said Ambassador in writing to the effect following.
As for the cause of Guillaume Bouillon. The requisition that the Judge of the Admiralty made to him, that he should proceed criminally against the pirate Pin, was conformable unto justice and for the good and profit of the plaintiff. For it is not convenient to remit unto the power of the party damaged by composition or any other accord to hinder the course of justice, for the consequence which depends thereof if such robberies and depredations should remain unpunished. And seeing that Bouillon knew that the said pirate was already made prisoner, if he had not pursued him further he should have lost a great part of the goods which were found in esse, which could not be restored to him but by ordinary form of suit upon the conviction of the pirate. And it is also questionable, if the said pirate having received goods and merchandise from a pirate, or having made accord with him to surcease from the pursuit in justice, if he had not been in danger of adherent or accessory to the piracy.
This matter having been again by the said Ambassador further urged, and pressed by his Majesty, the same was pleased to appoint certain commissioners, namely the Lord of Kinloss, Mr Secretary Herbert, Sir Daniel Dunne and the Judge of the Admiralty, to re-examine this cause among others, and to hear what the French could further allege in them and therof to make report to his Majesty, that thereupon such course might be taken as should be honourable and convenient to equity and justice; which has been accordingly performed. So as it appears that in this cause there has been as much done as justice could afford or might be extended by clemency or favour without wronging any other. But where[as] the complainant seems to aim principally to have a fundamental point of the law of the land, concerning his Majesty's rights to pirates' and felons' goods, changed, it may please the Most Christian King and the Lords of his Council to consider whether it be reasonable that an ancient law of many hundred years' continuance, and a general law over all the kingdom of England, according to which not only those of the French nation but all other strangers, yea, and all his Majesty's own subjects are in this behalf governed and ruled, should now be changed at this particular man's instance, after so many years' alliance between the two crowns of England and France: this point having been also often debated heretofore and determined to the contrary.
Concerning the list of other pretended piracies, because they neither concern this complainant nor are avowed by the subscription or proof of any party interested, the said Ambassador holds not convenient to make any particular answer thereunto at this present; but assures their Lordships that both in this matter of Bouillon and in all other, he will not fail to use all the endeavour he may to procure that to be done which appertains to justice and the mutual maintenance of amity and commerce, as he hopes to find the like measure at their Lordships' hands in those causes of his master's subjects that complain for the like occasion here.
Endorsed: "Bouillon's complaint." 1¼ pp. (125 14.)
Robert Trelawny, Mayor of Plymouth, to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 10. Received the enclosed this 10 Jan. by 11 of the clock from Sir Francis Godolphin, to be posted to him by the coming post, which accordingly he has done.—From Plymouth, 10 Jan. half an hour before 12 of the clock at noon, 1607.
Signed. Two seals. ½ p. (120 10.)
Advertisements from Cologne
1607–8, Jan. 12/22. "De Couloigne, le 22me de Janvier, 1608." Last advices from Vienna report the arrival there of General Collonitz out of High Hungary with divers letters to his Highness. Amongst them is a letter from Bosniach Thomas, governor of Villech, in which he protests that unless the succours of men, munitions and provisions he has several times demanded are sent to him, he cannot accept the responsibility if he should be surprised by the enemy. He writes also that the Haydugges and other Hungarians appear every day more discontented than ever with the re-establishment by the Emperor of the Inquisition and persecution at Possonia, contrary to the last agreement made with them. He fears too that in consequence of this and because the Diet is not held, as so often promised, in the said town, that the whole of Hungary will revolt.
The Sieur Thuxso writes that so far from the Haydugges being partly defeated, as we have announced in our preceding letters, Batori himself has been twice beaten by them. Then the Haydugges are preparing with the assistance of the Turks to ravage the territories of his Imperial Majesty. However, the peasants and others mustered against them have not yet dared to make any attempt against the said rebels, a troop of whom have taken and carried off some waggons laden with wine and other provisions, amongst which was a good quantity of money belonging to the Bishop of Breslau.
Letters from Ratisbon say that the Diet will be held there as soon as the Ambassadors of the Princes and States of the Empire shall have arrived there. The deputies of the Elector Palatine have already set out thitherward, to wit the Count of Witgenstain, governor of Simmeren, and others.
The Duke of Bavaria, after having given good order at Donaweert, has had all the arms and arquebuses and some pieces of cannon belonging to the burgesses taken away from there, and is preparing the parish church for the use of Romish services and ceremonies. His Highness has, moreover, directed the captains and other military officers, who served him before Donaweert and had received their pay and discharges, to be at hand with their soldiers in order to be ready at the first summons.
The Craitzdach of Suuevie was held at Ulms on the 22nd ult. No resolution was taken there, except as to the writing of letters of complaint in the matter of Donaweert to the Emperor, the Duke of Bavaria and other Protestant Princes of the Empire.
Paris letters report only that the Duke of Buillon returned to Sedan with the King's leave to re-enter into his first possessions and dignities.
We hear also in particular from Italy that the Venetians have refused to grant a passage through their country to certain Jesuits, notwithstanding that the Archduke of Gratz had given them a passport.
Last week some 30 mounted soldiers hereabouts carried off from the peasants about 70 horses causing fresh grumbling amongst the common people, so much the more because some will maintain that the said horsemen (reitres) were of the States.
Some rogues here have been caught and imprisoned for having passed several nights in opening houses and shops, and stealing from them various sorts of merchandise and other things. It is thought that they will soon receive condign punishment from the court (bureau).
A certain man, a native of Laanstain, whence he retired to take up his residence in this town, has also been carried off to the Tower here (emmenee sur le Tour) on the ground that he was a magician and would have done much mischief.
We hear also that on account of the great snows and unbearable cold over the low country, several men and beasts have been torn and eaten by wolves, and people are dying of the cold.
A certain good lord writes me from Germany of the 17th inst. as follows: the Duke of Bavaria has now introduced the Jesuits at Donaweert. They have at once seized possession of the great church (temple). But I am informed on very trustworthy authority that these apostles will not be satisfied with that alone, any more than they have been anywhere else. It is certain that the persecutions in Styria and Carinthia are greater than they have ever been, even to the disinterment of the dead, to burn their bones and scatter their ashes to the wind, and to the rasing of the churches of those of the religion to the ground. In Hungary, everything is in as great confusion as ever, the Inquisition of Rome having absolute power there (y commandans á bagguette), which causes the Hungarians to withdraw entirely from their obedience to the House of Austria. The latter has thereupon published that the Hungarians are disaffected not only to their House but to the whole Empire. The Pope's quarrel with the Venetians is revived, the latter having a little time ago expelled the Theatins, and also pulled down a monastery which was too near their arsenal.
Since writing the above the letters from Italy have arrived just as the messenger of the Low Countries is ready to go. It is impossible for us to translate these advices and add them to this, so that at present there is again need for patience.
French. 3¼ pp. (194 113.)
W. Brouncker to Mr Ker, his "friend and kinsman"
1607–8, Jan. 13. Thinks ingratitude unworthy of all honest men so would have seen him often ere this, but that ever since coming to town with the King before Christide, he has been so ill of a cold that he never went abroad except once or twice to Court, but stayed not. Sends him a letter he has "wrought" to his Lordship about some business which much concerns the writer and will not be troublesome to his Lordship; if he will deliver it and let him know what his Lordship says, he will not forget to requite it.—Canon Row, 13 Jan., 1607. Addressed: "To his worthie frind and kinsman Mr Ker at the Courte."
Holograph. Seal, broken. 1 p. (120 11.)
The Earl of Derby to his uncle, The Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 13. It has pleased you to be a mean to his Majesty for conferring upon me divers honours, and among others the Chamberlainship of Chester; wherein I hope my carriage has been such as may deserve the continuance of his Highness's favours, and your defences to confront all oppugners. But being last term taxed in the opening of a cause, as I am informed, in the Chancery, by me (upon full and deliberate hearing) formerly decreed, between Sir John Egerton and Kelly, and understanding that the said cause is referred to a further judicial hearing there the next term, I thought good to acquaint you therewith, praying (that where causes formerly decreed in the Exchequer of Chester are called into other Courts is [sic] merely repugnant to the liberties of the County Palatine), you would speak with my Lord Chancellor thereabout, especially being a cause of equity best known to myself. And further, whereas his Majesty has pleased to confer the place of lieutenancy upon me, his Highness shall find me as faithful a servant as his royal progenitors have always found my ancestors.—Knowsley, 13 Jan. 1607.
Holograph. 1 p. (120 12.)
Sir Charles Cornwallis to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 13. I received your Lordship's of November 18 this 12th of January, by the parts whereof I perceive that few or none of the many I have written since the entry of October had then come into your hands. For want of appointment of some conveniency of conveyance, his Majesty's service receives prejudice, and my letters pass in very much peril. Considering that the merchants there, beside their ordinary commerce in these kingdoms, have amongst them all depending here in suit to the value of 40,000l, and that by an ordinary to be erected amongst them, who might come and go every six weeks, they might by their letters negotiate with more expedition and certainly in all parts of these countries, it seems unto me that they might be moved to contribute the greatest part of the charge, if not the whole.
It much discourages me, and will no less whomsoever shall succeed me, to live in so continual a doubt of the miscarrying of our letters, and to find that those that go right yet dwell so long upon the way as when they arrive they may fitly be compared to a shower after harvest. I have sent you enclosed a list of my dispatches since the beginning of October, beseeching by your next to understand how many of them have come to your hands and which have failed.
A principal Jesuit here told a friend of mine that the King was now resolved to continue the wars in the Low Countries; that he understood there was a general good disposition in England to the catholic religion; that the King there would not be found failing to those of that profession in that kingdom; and lastly would continue his amity with the King our sovereign as that which, for the present, much imported his estate and the general quiet of Christendom, and hoped there would be no more treasons committed in England by those of that devotion, confessing the last to have been very scandalous and to have drawn much prejudice to the common cause. And so for this time I take my leave.
It seems that upon my last expostulation with them concerning the entertainment given to the Irish fugitive Earls by the Archduke, present order was sent from hence that they should be avoided. So did the Secretary Prada this day advertise me, as also that there should be care taken in all things to content my sovereign. If the correspondency that their Ambassador there holds with our Jesuits were left, I would hope that all things would in time do well. I have here enclosed unto you the "faynt" letter that the Ambassador there sent unto the Seignorie, as it seems at your entreaty, which I found means to get into my hands. The prisoners in Lisbon had order for their enlargement before the coming of his letters. Those of Seville are yet detained, as I suppose expecting what shall be the event of the ship stayed in Bordeaux.—Madrid, 13 Jan. 1607, stilo antiquo.
P.S.—Your Lordship may perceive by the manner of this letter what haste was used in it; I beseech you pardon it. Although it be written with two hands (fn. 3) and not well regarded, yet proceeds it from one and an entire heart, both to the business and to your Lordship. All the gold that could be had upon any exchange in this town is gone yesterday by Ryvers, the Ambassador's messenger. It may be that it is for his own provision; I am desirous to judge the best, yet hold it my duty to advertise what I hear.
Signed and postscript by Cornwallis. Endorsed: "Sir Ch. Cornwaleis to my Lord. Rec[eived]220." 1½ pp. (120 13.)
[Sir Thomas Edmondes] to the [Earl of Salisbury]
1607–8, Jan. 13. Commissioners appointed for the treaty with States; the Marquis Spinola, Manciscidor, secretary for the affairs of Spain, the President Richardot, the Cordellier, the Audiencier. The next day a courier dispatched into Spain. The Marquis hath 34 liveries. In their absence Ambassadors referred to the Archduke himself. A letter to the Duke of Lorraine from Sir Thomas Edmondes to hinder Tyrone's passage that way, where he gave out he should be well entertained.
Abstract. (227 p.341.)
The Lord Treasurer to Sir Thomas Edmondes
1607–8, Jan. 14. From my Lord Treasurer, in answer of the letter wherein the Archduke desired the King to further the peace. The Lords of the Council speak with the Archduke's Ambassador, relate what hath been done; desire to know what is further required; withal allege how ill the Archduke hath deserved this kindness by two actions 1. by protecting such as were principals in the powder treason as Owen and Baldwin, and other accessories as Stanley and Blount: 2. by receiving Tyrone with such favour and ceremony, as if he had been a grand[ee] of Spain, or an ambassador. Touching the peace, the Ambassador said the despair of the success of the business made them thus long to defer to require his Majesty's furtherance. For Tyrone, he denied that there was any such favour showed him. Spinola's feast objected. First answered that Spinola did likewise feast the captain that came out of Ostend; then that my Lord Treasurer had feasted traitors to the Archduke. My Lord answered, if he meant Monsr. Caron, he would eat with him as the States' agent as well as with the Archduke's Ambassador; concluded that he had done ill offices in the amity. The Ambassador comes afterwards to my Lord to excuse himself. He judges him to be both weak and indiscreet, and adviseth Sir Thomas Edmondes to speak of the matter but by way of answer if he hear complaints made of it. Direction to have the Irishman's letters sent by Florence. A postscript qualifying the former conference to provide the better excuses for it.
Abstract. (227 p.341.)
Sir George St Paul to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 14. At length I have sent you the hind which bore the horn I left last year with your Lordship, and by view of the like which she now wears you will believe the better that I then told you of her. I had thought to have kept her till about May in hope to have had her then accompanied with a calf of her own store, but since your desire is to have her presently I must now entreat you to take her, but with that hope which yet is uncertain. Yet 'tis certain she was accompanied with a stag, only I doubt the rut time was far spent before they came together. If I had a greater rarity or more worthy jewel to present you withal, I should be right glad to tender it.—Mellwood, 14 Jan. 1607.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (84 67.)
Lord Eure to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 15. According to his letters in behalf of old Mr Tannett to be muster master in Montgomery, has placed him there and written to the Sheriff, Lieutenants and Justices there for the continuance of his pension; which he doubts not will be continued to his liking.—Ludlow, 15 Jan. 1607.
Holograph. Seal. 2/3 p. (120 16.)
Sibilla, Lady Grey to the Earl of Salisbury
1607–8, Jan. 15. Not long since the bailiff of Whaddon delivered your letters unto me, together with a petition by which he did suggest that I had taken his wonted fees from him. For answer whereof you may understand that long before he brought your letters unto me, I had advised with my learned counsel what kind of perquisites appertained to me in right of the manor, and what fees were due and proper to the bailiff. I was assured by my counsel that heriots and strays belong only to myself, which the bailiff claims. All other fees in right due to his place he holds, and if it please you that he shall have those also I will be willing to leave them, as one deeply bound unto you for your manifold benefits to myself and mine.—Bidlesden, 15 Jan. 1607.
Holograph. 2/3 p. (120 17.)


  • 1. The symbol used here is apparently for gros or groschen.
  • 2. de bonne guerre: "fair play" or "taking and ransoming of prisoners in war" (Cotgrave).
  • 3. The second hand commences at "It seems that upon . . ."