Elizabeth: June 1578, 1-10

Pages 1-8

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 13, 1578-1579. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1903.

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June 1578, 1-10

June 4.
K. d. L. x. 508.
Mr. Davison cannot furnish the sum of 15,000 florins for which the Estates ask, out of the £20,000 which the Queen has sent him, for the reasons following :—
First, because he has her Majesty's express orders not to let any of it out of his hands until he has been advertised of the result of the negotiation between the Estates and the Duke of Alençon ; after which she will let him know her pleasure. If she does command him to deliver the sum in question, he has express orders to furnish the whole of it to Duke Casimir at the place of muster, as agreed with him. If he wished to be so liberal as to furnish some part of the said sum he could only do it after receipt of such obligations and securities as the Estates are bound to give. Lastly he cannot take anything from the sum without first knowing if Duke Casimir will be content to receive so much less ; which he cannot learn from any of his agents who have gone from here, and still less from the Viscount of Hargenlieu, who has no orders to apply to him.—Antwerp, 4 June 1578. Copy. Endd. : Pour Monsieur l'ambassadeur. Fr. 2/3 p. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 1.]
June 5. 2. DUKE CASIMIR to the QUEEN.
Your Majesty's courteous letters, and the good news which I receive from all who come from your country, that your affection increases day by day, make me so burn with the wish to serve you that I cannot refrain from going to the Low Countries. Yet on looking closely into affairs there, infinite difficulties appear ; the fickleness of the people whom I am to help, the diversity of humours, the party-divisions of all kinds, increasing every day, and the general want of order in their actions. Notwithstanding which, and though most of my relations dissuade me, and I leave my State as it were a prey, I have thought good to obey your wish. But I am assured that as I show myself obedient to your commands, knowing that there is little hope of getting anything out of the Estates, and to please you am entering this labyrinth, you will not abandon me ; as you have indeed promised by letters and through your ambassador, and by word of mouth assured those who have gone from me to you. I for my part promise on the faith of a prince that I will not lay down my arms nor make any treaty without your consent. And that you may know how roundly I walk, I beg you to send an envoy with me to inspect my actions and assist my deliberations. If your Majesty so pleases I wish it to be Mr Sidney. Touching the assembly at Smalcalden your Majesty's decision to send thither is a further proof of your piety. But I have taken such order, by the best means I could think of, that the assembly is broken off. It will never meet, or not for a long time, and your people need not be at the trouble of the journey. Yet I thank you for the affection you bear to the repose of the Holy Empire.— Lautern, 6 June 1578. Add. Endd. Fr. 2¼ pp. [Germ. States I. 68.]
June 5.
K. d. L. x. 510.
After perusing the dealings between M. d'Anjou and the Estates, and also by your letter conveying your negotiation with the Prince of Orange and the Estates, and other writings touching the province of Hainault, it seems that great danger may follow if some order be not taken. We would have you say from us, both to the Prince and to the Estates that considering how far they have proceeded with the Duke's ambassadors and how necessary they take it to accept his offers, we should be glad that they would stay any resolution until the coming of Lord Cobham and Sir Francis Walsingham, who are making ready to come thither. If they cannot be induced to this, you shall require them in our name to make no such resolution with Monsieur as may be prejudicial to themselves or us by suffering him to have any such interest in those countries, 'but that they may' always divert him from usurping any further estate than shall serve to their aid. Declaring to them further that we have given order to Lord Cobham and Sir Francis Walsingham to come to them with full and ample instructions to confer with them not only upon this matter, but also upon the whole affairs of that country ; who will fully give them to understand what way we think meetest for them to take in defence of their common cause. Endd. : A copy of her Majesty's letter to Mr. Davison, 5 June 1578. 2/3 p. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 2.]
June 5.
K. d. L. x. 311.
You will see by her Majesty's letter what she thinks fit to be done touching the States' proceedings with the French ; according to the direction therein contained you are to frame the course of your dealings, so I need not repeat the matter, being otherwise overladen with business. I am secretly advertised that there lies at Calais a Spanish commissary for victuals in company with one Captain la Rivière ; for that Don John means to erect a camp in those quarters under the conduct of the Prince of Parma, being encouraged to do so by his belief that Gravelines is at his devotion. I am further advertised that Dunkirk and Borborch are in such fear that if la Motte attempts the enterprise, even with a small number, they will incontinent yield themselves. Which being a matter of dangerous consequence for all those maritime parts if it take place, I thought good to acquaint you, that you may impart the same to those there. Touching your private suit, I will use my best endeavour to bring it to good terms, that I may bring you some comfortable news at my coming ; which I look shall be about the latter end of next week.—Greenwich, 5 June 1578. P.S.—Pray thank M. de Villiers for his two letters, and excuse my not writing to him. Add. Written by L. Tomson. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 3.]
June 5.
K. d. L. x. 510.
As the time draws near when I shall have to take the field, and all things not being yet settled, I have sent the present bearers, my councillor M. Schregel and M. Kunigsloe, with orders to keep in close correspondence with you. Kindly give them all confidence, and do what you can for the public cause, as heretofore, and I shall ever be grateful.—Lautern, 5 June 1578. Add. Fr. ½ p. [Ibid. VII. 4.]
June 5.
K. d. L. x. 512.
The Queen liked well your letter of May 30, which I afterwards communicated to the Council. Upon deliberation it was thought that her Majesty should make her pleasure known to you ; both to deal with the States for the expectation for aid upon necessity, and for the receiving of the French offer. You may assure everyone that she minds nothing more than the welfare of the Low Countries, and will deal for their safety as much as any prince in Christendom. Mr Secretary is very careful that all things may be done with honour and safety ; by whom it is hoped that either a good peace will be made, or a just war will follow. The Queen is inwardly moved to do good, and being satisfied in conscience how to deal, I daresay the Estates will be glad to see the aid of such a prince sent to them, 'who will do nothing but moved upon just grounds in the fear of God.' It will not be long 'but' Lord Cobham and Mr Walsingham will follow this messenger and therefore I need not write more at large to you.—From the Court, 5 June 1578. Add. Endd. ¾ p. [Ibid. VII. 5.]
Considerations on the state of Ireland.
Considering what is the vein and fountain whence comes all our unquietness, especially in Ireland, I marked three things causing our rude unquiet people there to rise against their godly quiet prince. The first and 'principalest' the long suffering of monks and friars, and especially of their fair mighty houses, whereby they are not only maintained themselves, but also those who with their counsel remain in perpetual rebellion. The remedy is no better than to pluck down such houses. When the fox has no hole he must run away, and the bird having no nest cannot breed. The second is the 'large' imprisonment of Richard Craigh, called the Primate of Ireland, now bearing the name of a prisoner in the Tower of London ; whose letters came almost daily to France, Italy, and Spain, alluring all evil-disposed persons against our good and merciful prince. This fellow ought to be rewarded according to his service. The third and not the least is doubtless James Fitzmorris having the name of the greatest rebel (Shan O'Neill only excepted) in all Ireland, running from one Papist prince to another with the Pope's commendations, and his proud letters to his foolish friends in Ireland, 'comforting' them to resist their prince ; and this Episcopus Maionen. preaching in Spain and 'craving in every other where for him.' God will I doubt not plague these two fellows, and if a man could reward them according to their deeds, he should do right good service to God. It were better that two did perish than all the people. I write what my conscience doth bid me, in witness whereof I subscribe my name, the 7th of June 1578. (Signed) Denis Molan. Copy in hand of Poulet's secretary ; signature apparently original. Later endorsement. 1 p. [France II. 48.]
June [8].
Lettres de C. de M. vi. (where it is under August or September).
I cannot express to you the pleasure with which I received the message that you sent me by Mr. Stafford, the present bearer, touching the thing in all the world which I most desire to see accomplished ; and if any one has told you the contrary I pray you not to believe them, but be assured they are persons who do not wish me to have before I die such happiness, which will be the greatest of my life, when I shall have the fortune to see it. This makes me beg you, if hitherto there have been occasions which have tended to delay matters, that for the future you will abridge and hasten them ; for on the side of your servant I am assured that he will hurry to do whatever depends on him and on the king his brother, whose wishes correspond with his, in order to have the honour of laying before you that which I for my part so much desire that henceforth all days will be hateful to me until I see the one which will make the Duke of Anjou happy ; nor him alone, but the king his brother and yours, and me, who will be associated in their happiness, and all the realm. Now, my good daughter—I pray you pardon me herein if in place of sister I say what I have so desired ; affection has made me blunder—since matters are so advanced please make no more delays and let me have the pleasure before I die of seeing a fair son from you, which I am sure God will allow, and I cannot hope for it otherwise. With all His past favours to me, He will grant this ; and I pray Him to have you always in His grace.
Holograph. Add. Fr. 1¼ pp. [France II. 49.]
June 8. 9. POULET to the QUEEN.
Enclosed is the abstract of a letter sent lately from this Court to Monsieur, by de Rosne, lieutenant of his company of men at arms, containing some details in my opinion not unworthy of consideration. In some things it betrays the humours of such as belong to Monsieur. It may seem by this letter that the brothers are not yet reconciled, and as I conjecture from what I see and hear in these parts there is no likelihood of better agreement between them. It is given out, both in the Court and in the city, that Monsieur meets the king at 'Gallion' or in those parts, and the reporters of this pretend to speak of it as a matter of secrecy ; but nothing less is intended, if I am not deceived. The author of this abstract has always dealt honestly with me, and may be of service hereafter, and therefore it may please you to commend such as shall be acquainted with this to keep it secret. I think you have heard that Montmorency has been lately called to Court, where he has been entertained with all the favour that can be devised, the king seeming to depend on his counsel in all weighty matters. It is received for matter of truth that the young men in credit about the king are the authors of this and that they desire nothing more than his daily presence about the king. They are said to consider that he has no stuff in him to impair their credit, while his countenance may serve to defend them against the malice of the house of Guise ; and that now the French liberty of speech will cry out no longer upon every occasion against the king's minions (for so they call them) when they see nothing done without Montmorency, whose gray hairs shall bear the slander of their young devices. Some well acquainted with the French proceedings in these later days remembering the manner of the late departure of the house of Guise from the Court, conclude that Queen Mother is blowing at this coal, and that this sudden blast of flattery is the beginning of some mighty tempest, and that Montmorency may chance to be one of the first that shall make shipwreck ; all affirming with one voice that nothing is less intended by these flatteries than to increase the greatness of the house of Montmorency, which has long been hated by the greatest of the realm, and now some think he will incur the displeasure of Monsieur. I am not ignorant how ill it becomes me to trouble your Majesty with these French imaginations, and I know that I hazard my own credit, nothing being more certain than that the French doings are utterly uncertain and commonly fall out directly contrary to reason and good judgement. But pardon my boldness, and where I cannot be so happy as to assure the event of things to come, commonly unknown even to their principal authors, give me leave to inform you of such opinions as I can gather by conference with such as seem to be 'indewed' with some judgement. James Fitzmorris arrived in this town on the 4th, and being informed by a friar of the shape and fashion of one of his servants and of his apparel I caused him to be followed so long that I have now found his master's lodging, and hope to be able to render you some account of his behaviour here. This bearer, Mr Edward Stafford, will not fail to advertise your Highness of all that he or I have learnt of the state of things here.—Paris, 8 June 1578.
Add. Endd. by L. Tomson. 2½ pp. [Ibid. II. 50.]
Enclosure in the Above.
Extract made June 2, from two letters written five or six days ago to Monsieur, by M. de Rosne his deputy at Court.
It appears from the letters in question that Monsieur wishes the king to avow and favour his journey to Flanders, seeing that his intention is only by a war abroad to keep this state from war. To this his Majesty replies that he cannot favour this journey in any way. The Queen has said that she will hinder it with all her power, since her affairs are in such a state that she can in no wise advise or allow her son to embark on it. And the minions say that it were better for his Majesty to make war on Monsieur, all the more that the Huguenots would be joined with him, than on the king of Spain. Rosne writes that they would have done it already but for lack of means ; and intended both by threats and by other methods to prevent Monsieur from levying forces. Upon this Monsieur asked that the king would allow him to pledge part of his domain, to obtain means to meet the expenses of the war. The king said he could not grant it ; the queen has guaranteed to prevent it altogether. To Monsieur's request that his company with 12 others might muster in arms the king and queen said they saw plainly it was intended to mount the said companies ; and they would not allow Monsieur to muster any companies but his own, meanwhile to prevent this company from doing anything, nine companies have been mustered in Champagne for the king besides twelve which he has placed about his person. On Wednesday evening, May 28, M. de Saint Luc assured their Majesties that Monsieur's people had been dismissed by the Estates with thanks. The Queen of Navarre also has had a letter from the Countess of Lalaing, informing her that Monsieur's troops are marching toward Luxembourg, and making no mention of any disagreement between her husband and the Estates or Prince of Orange. The Duke of Uzes, through his agent la Rue, has offered Monsieur 8,000 harquebusiers and 400 horse. M. Theval, lately governor of Metz, asks Monsieur to commission his son to levy 5 companies of foot, being assured that from the garrisons in Picardy and Champagne, and especially from Metz, all the best soldiers may be drawn. M. de Berrieu assures Monsieur of passage by a strong town in Picardy, on the Somme. Every day many captains apply to Monsieur's agent asking commission for their men at arms ; and to this end he asks to have blanks sent him to distribute to the most suitable. Marshal de Cossé though offended that the door of the Cabinet was closed to him one day lately, has nevertheless been dispatched to Monsieur to divert him from his journey. Monsieur has many enemies at Court ; especially those of the Cabinet, who govern more than ever. MM. de Guise left the Court much discontented with his Majesty ; and many other lords are so who are still at Court. The king has accordingly sent for Marshal de Montmorency, who now governs all, and it is averred that he wishes to make him Constable of France. Still however little the king may make of MM. de Guise and the other malcontents, he is sure to be reconciled with them. It is held here that the Duke of Guise has been poisoned and that he took antidotes in such quantity that his face had swelled and his wound opened ; and he had sent for Ambrose, the king's surgeon, who had gone to him ; and if he had been poisoned it was certain enough whence the coup had come. Bouchemont is expecting a commission to levy men in Brie, whom he says he is taking to the Low Countries under favour of Monsieur's company. The Queen of England does not approve of Monsieur's journey, and has sent a special ambassador to the Court and to him, to protest. Monsieur is advised to send to the said queen, to excuse himself and to pacify her. Having asked audience of the king, Rosne was told that he had had a tooth out ; and he writes that if he did that every day, he would be forced to take nothing but broth. Gravelines is at the King of Spain's devotion, for the sum of 30,000 crowns given by his Catholic Majesty, half to La Mothe, the governor, and half to Gourdon, governor of Calais. The Marquis of La Roche, lately governor of Artois, is at Compiègne brewing some enterprise upon the towns of that country, and advises him by all means to pursue his enterprise, saying that when the Estates see him in arms they will not refuse him. He will do well to send to Count Lalaing to know if he will place Hainault in his hands. Monsieur has again asked the King to let him send 6,000 harquebusiers and 12 companies of men at arms into the Low Countries unavowed ; which the King refused. Monsieur's agent only communicates with their Majesties at the Council, and never but when the King and Queen are together, consequently under great difficulty.
Endd. : The copy of a French letter. Fr. 3 pp. [Ibid. II. 51.]
[June 8.] 10. Another copy or draft of Poulet's letter to the Queen (No. 9). Endd. 2¾ pp. [Ibid. II. 52.]
June 8. 11. STURMIUS to DAVISON.
I did what I could for George Gilpin ; not what I would. The excuse of our Senate is true, though I am sorry that opinions were counted and not weighed. But that is the old and everlasting inconvenience of free states. If the war is not going to last long, that will be a slight hindrance ; if it is carried into another year we must try another course with our Estates. A stout tree is not felled with one blow. Winter is the time for counsels ; we must now take thought for the present. I shall not cease to wish and to pray, to help and to work out so far as I can what I think will best serve you and ourselves. I pray God that what you have prudently set on foot and stoutly undertaken may turn out fortunately for the Queen our mistress and her realms, and prosper to the increase of God's glory the preservation of the public safety and the common tranquillity of all men.—Strasburg, 8 June 1578. (Signed) Joannes Sturmius, Rector.
Add. Holograph. Lat. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 6.]
June 8. 12. W. LEWIN to DAVISON.
The bearer having been born in those parts and having occasion to resort thither from 'My Lord of Oxenford,' whom he serves in very good place and credit, being 'well furnished with the languages and other good qualities,' has requested my letters of commendation to you. Please yield him, as occasion shall serve, such favour and countenance as the goodness of your nature easily yields to gentlemen so qualified, and your office makes available to such as receive the same. He has the rather required this of me because he understands your special friendship towards me, and I do so the rather because he has special good 'guyftes' and wishes. Thus much of him. Of yourself, I am very glad to learn, as I do 'to weete,' summam laudem gestœ legationis tuœ ; wherein the greater commendation you purchase, the more favours I doubt you shall purchase of her Majesty, and consequently the better reward.—London, June 8 1578.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 7.]