Mary: September 1558

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Mary 1553-1558. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1861.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.


'Mary: September 1558', Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Mary 1553-1558, (London, 1861), pp. 393-396. British History Online [accessed 12 June 2024].

. "Mary: September 1558", in Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Mary 1553-1558, (London, 1861) 393-396. British History Online, accessed June 12, 2024,

. "Mary: September 1558", Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Mary 1553-1558, (London, 1861). 393-396. British History Online. Web. 12 June 2024,

This volume has gold page scans.
Access these scans with a gold subscription. Key icon

September 1558

Sept. 1.
823. Gilles de Sens to Queen Mary. Thanks her Majesty for having at the request of Lord Clinton, her Admiral, taken his son into her service as page. Hopes that he will do his utmost to perform his duty, and requests he may have leave for two or three months that he may come to look after his affairs. [French. One page.]
Sept. 26.
824. Dr. Wotton to same. On the 22d inst. arrived at Lisle, where the Commissioners for this peace are. These on the one side are the Prince of Orange, the Bishop of Arras, and Ruy Gomez, and on the other, the Constable and the Marshal St. André. His object being both to salute King Philip's Commissioners and to see if he could learn anything of their proceedings, and of the Ambassadors of the Hanse, he thought that one day's tarrying there could not be ill bestowed. He accordingly spent the 22d there, and visited the Commissioners, from whom he learnt that they of the Hanse were at Arras, and had already spoken with the Count of Feria and the President Viglius, both then at that city. Heard from the Commissioners of certain difficulties attending their negotiations. The matter whereof they have had most controversy is the restitution of Calais, whereunto the French by no means will agree, alleging that it is of the old domain of France, so that no King of England (although some had pretended right to other countries of France) could ever claim any right thereto, but by usurpation and force, by which the French have recovered it again. Learned also from them that her Majesty had been written to, to send Ambassadors to be heard in the making of this treaty, and that hitherto nothing is agreed upon. On the 24th came hither, where he received a letter from King Philip with the copy of another which his Majesty had sent by a carrier, whom Wotton missed, probably because the posts ride another way than that which he took. Sends copies of these to her Majesty (missing), whereby she will perceive that the Ambassadors of the Hanse, having no commission to the King for their matters, were anon dismissed and returned homeward before Wotton's arrival, "such good speed they had in their suit." Hears that De L'Aubespine, the French King's Secretary, arrived here about the same time as himself, and left yesterday for Lisle, so it will appear he is to join the other French Commissioners. Heard at Lisle, and it is also reported here, that their Holy Father the Pope is departed, on whose soul God have mercy! Does not know the certainty of this; but the Florentine Ambassador at Brussels told a servant or secretary of Ruy Gomez three or four days ago, that he had received letters from the Duke, his master, certifying him of the Pope's death. [Two pages.]
Sept. 26.
825. Dr. Wotton to Sir John Boxall. Had seen the Commissioners at Lisle on the 22d. There has been much ado betwixt them for Calais, and the French stand very stiff in that point. Speculates as to the policy pursued by them thereon. Suggests that the Ambassadors sent by her Majesty should not only be such grave and wise personages as are meet for a matter of so great importance, but quod est omnium primum, such as are grateful and acceptable to King Philip, and who, as he takes it, must also make some speed if they will come in time; for seeing that De L'Aubespine has arrived, they will probably not be long about the matter now, but will resolve, off or on, ere it be long. Unless this business of Calais be earnestly followed, he much fears the worst of it. Muses not a little on the sudden sending away of the Ambassadors of the Hanse. Since they are to return hither sufficiently authorized, thinks diligent search should be made everywhere for all privileges, treaties, diets (of which they say seven or eight were kept in the times of Kings Henry VII. and VIII.) Acts of Parliament, processes, and all other like things concerning their pretended privileges; otherwise those who shall be appointed to debate with them, shall be as far to seek therein as Wotton himself, who has seen in a manner no more of the premises than they of the Hanse have shown him. Some of the best civilians should also be consulted how sufficiently to answer their reasons and objections by the law. Speaking with the Count de Lalaing of this treaty of the peace, among other words he said "Il nous faut ravoir ce Calais," which seemed to sound in his ears as though the Count had got some trust of the restitution of Calais. Cannot well tell whether he meant so indeed, or whether Wotton was the readier to understand it that way, because that facile credimus quœ cupide credimus. [Two pages.]
Sept. 26.
826. Same to the Council. Has received their letter of the 21st inst. with the two notarial instruments concerning the ill handling of her Majesty's factors in Dantzic. But because the meeting of the Hanse matter is deferred, when other Ambassadors shall be sent to treat of such things, he shall have no convenient occasion to make any further declaration of these matters at all, seeing he has touched briefly upon this last ill handling in a letter to King Philip. Seeing his errand is come to this point, if every body else would be as well contented with it as he himself, he would wish to be at Christchurch again. The two camps are within five leagues of each other, and though the French are said to be the greater number, they have trenched and fortified their camp so that none can approach without great danger. Had they not done so, is informed by Count Lalaing and others, that the King is of such a courage that he would not fail to set upon them. In the meanwhile, lying thus, nothing or little is done between them, and each appears rather to try to weary out the other, and see who shall first be constrained to break up. Thinks peace probable, and the long forbearing of these camps to be not without cause; besides the Duke of Arschot and the Prince of Orange would not be at Lisle, or the Count of Lalaing here, but all should be in the camp if any danger were feared. [One page.]
Sept. 26.
827. William Lord Paget [Lord Privy Seal] to the Council. Received their letter about eight o'clock last night. Thinks her Majesty has made good choice of Commissioners for the peace, and devised well for sending the commission over to Wotton, who is a wise man, and will have the help of the Commissioners already there, should the matter require such haste as it may not tarry for those who are to be sent. Their Lordships have reason to require the restitution of Calais, of Guisnes, and the Marches, with the furniture of the artillery and munitions left therein, and that for avoiding contention hereafter the limits may be made certain. Thinks that the arrearages of their debts and pensions should be asked, and earnestly stuck to, to the intent that if Calais, which they never looked for, be had again, they may forego the recompence (if a better bargain cannot be made) that they never hoped for. These arrearages amount to 15,000 or 16,000 crowns, besides greater sums covenanted by King Francis than were paid by the present King for the restitution of Boulogne. Doubts not but the French will look for some recompence either at the King's or Queen's hand if Calais be restored; for institution, he believes, is made on both sides with reciprocal recompence. At present thinks no other demands should be made than those which are commonly inserted in all treaties. Thinks overtures for the peace being extended to the Scots should proceed from the French, when they can move their articles for the Irish islanders, and the razing of Roxburgh and Eyemouth. "Written on the morning about seven of the clock." [One page.]
Sept. 28. 828. Queen Mary to Dr. Wotton. The King, her dearest lord and husband, has signified to her Majesty the communication of peace presently on hand between him and the French King, and has required that the Lord Chancellor, the Lord Treasurer, the Lord Admiral, and Mr. Boxall, her Principal Secretary, should be sent over with authority to treat and conclude of this matter. As the Lord Chancellor cannot be spared from home at this time, and the other three are all so sick and weak that they be in no wise able to travel out of their chambers, her Majesty has appointed in their stead the Earl of Arundel and the Bishop of Ely to act with Wotton as her Commissioners therein. [Draft.]
Sept. 30.
829. Dr. Wotton to Sir John Boxall. The Pope is not dead but recovers, although he was thought to be past recovery. On Saturday the 24th De L'Aubespine came hither, and next day went to Lisle, where he remained Monday and Tuesday, and on Wednesday returned here on his way homewards. This makes the common people here fear that there is little hope of agreement betwixt the Commissioners; and this is the more suspected as the Prince of Orange, M. D'Arras, and Ruy Gomez have also left Lisle. Gomez has gone to the camp, and the other two to a marriage at Douai; but they may he at Lisle again when they will and perhaps De L'Aubespine. Is informed by the Venetian Ambassador that the Seigniory have laboured earnestly on both sides for peace, but yet they do not appear to be aware of the present assembly of Commissioners for that purpose. Both this Ambassador and the Italians here seem to reckon assuredly upon a peace; and the former says that like as he finds this side well inclined, so does his brother Ambassador in France find the same there. It is said that the King's camp will in a day or two remove a league near to Dourlons [Dorlens], that is nigher home, and that the King will in a few days be here. On Michaelmas Day [Thursday] 800 of the pioneers sent back from the camp, left this for Gravelines under their captains Vaughan, Blunt, Nogay, and another. Three or four of them were slain on their way from the camp by the swartrritters, and some were robbed and spoiled. The great fortifications begun at Gravelines troubles his weak brain, for why should it be needed if there is any hope of the restitution of Calais, which would be a bulwark sufficient for all that side of Flanders. Faxit Deus ut vanus augur sit! Thinking on this matter of Calais is sometimes to him what the trophœa Miltiadis were to Themistocles, so strange the sequel seeming like to be if Calais returns not home again. If there be any hope of this now is the time or never. [Two pages.]
Sept. 30. 830. The Bishop of Ely to Sir John Boxall. Tarries at home to-day for the better hasting forthward of his folks, but fears the proverb "more haste, worse speed." His hasty calling upon them makes them whilst they go about one thing to forget another. Prays him heartily to cause the clerks to put in readiness their dispatches, viz., the copies of their instructions and of such leagues as may be considered necessary to be taken with them. Has a common place to trust such things in, and finding that place empty, remembered to write for them in time. Last night wrote to Lord Arundel the Queen's pleasure for their speedy setting forth, and looks this day for answer. When Lord Arundel shall be ready, he will not tarry behind, though he should go on foot, as, according to the words of Scripture, "in me mora non erit ulla." Prays God to send them well forth to her Majesty's good contentation.
P.S.—If Boxall forgets their passports and such other things as shall warrant them in their journey, they shall make the worse speed. [One page.]