Elizabeth: February 1579, 1-15

Pages 406-419

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

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February 1579, 1-15

In continuance of the acquaintance and friendship begun between us last year, I would not omit to let you know that the hope I had of some day finding an opportunity to kiss the hand of her Majesty the Queen of England, as the singular protectress among potentates who are called Christian, of our true, indubitable, Catholic (yet not Roman) religion, has been frustrated, by reason of the death of my wife's brother, whom may God pardon. Still, I hope that when you have opportunity you will not omit to do me the courtesy of coming to see me, and meanwhile will correspond with me on what happens in those parts. Whereinsoever I can do your pleasure, you will always find me ready. I much regret that affairs have not up till now taken such effect as many honest people hoped for, and especially that with such a powerful army, and such apparently good resources, so little, or rather nothing worth mentioning, should have been achieved. I know not if, with the common report, I am to attribute this to treason, bad faith, avarice, and carelessness ; or rather judge that God by such means declares that this common cause, as being His work, does not consist in human force or power. As for news, all roads being full of danger, please learn from the bearer of this what is daily happening here.— Moers, 1 Feb. 1579. Add. Fr. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 45.]
Though I have written to you twice this week and have little to trouble you with this time, I would not let this bearer go empty-handed. Last Thursday I delivered her Majesty's letter on behalf of Monsieur to the States, having first communicated the substance of it to his ambassador. Their answer was that they were sorry the Duke should have cause to complain of them to her Majesty. They had not wittingly given him any cause, having done their utmost for his satisfaction. If he had been unworthily used by any they would have done their best to punish it according to the quality of the offence. As for other matter concerning the treaty between them, they had, as they told me, appointed the Marquis of Havrech, the abbot of St Bernard, and Meetkerke, to repair to him at La Fère ; by whom they hope to give him some good satisfaction, but what, I have not yet particularly heard, their instructions being altered by the accident of this sudden departure. And whereas I had also noted some error in their respect towards her Majesty, because neither by me nor any other they had acquainted her with their new-attempted peace etc. They told me the multitude of business, and not any want of duty to her Majesty was the cause of their slackness. Howbeit, for the better discharge of their duties henceforth, they had determined to depute certain of their assembly to communicate to me from time to time such things as should pass of any moment ; not doubting that her Majesty would excuse them for what is past and retain them in her grace and favour. This in substance was their answer.—Antwerp, 1 Feb. 1579. P.S.—The association of those of Artois, Hainault, etc. has furthered the intended meeting between the deputies of the provinces of Holland, Zealand, Guelders, 'Phrize,' Utrecht, Groningen, etc. to conclude a league offensive and defensive, but without prejudice to the general union. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. XI. 46.]
The chief cause of my present dispatch is to gratify Mr Vice-Chamberlain, by whom I have been requested to bestow a packet upon this bearer, his servant, who goes over on private business of his own. The honourable usage and entertainment of Duke Casimir continues, both at her Majesty's hands and that of the nobility, to whom no other foreign prince could have been better welcome. Besides, the commons have received no small joy to see him, which is an argument of their sincere affection towards her Majesty, when they so much esteem those that love and honour her. He purposes to depart hence about the 7th or 8th inst. with intention as I understand to retire to Germany, and return no more into the Low Countries. I have not heard that either he or Beutrich has given out any speeches in mislike of your negotiations with him ; but all has passed in entertainment and compliments. I am sorry to understand by your letters and others that the state of things in that country grows to such desperate terms. For my own part, I never looked for better, weighing the violent counsels of some there ; who could not be content to have things reformed by little and little and by temperate means, but would needs proceed more rashly than advisedly. Her Majesty finds fault that you use no more diligence in writing, and that you sent not within a fortnight after your coming to Ghent ; wherefore you will do well to write every week by the merchants' post, if the matters be not of great importance. Her Majesty proposed once to 'revoke' you ; but she has now changed her mind, and I think you will be continued there.— Whitehall, 3 Feb. 1578. Add. Endd. 2/3 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 47.]
The Queen's pleasure is you should call upon the States for the payment of Spinola and Horatio, who solicit payment here ; the bonds being passed between her Majesty and them, and not between the States and them. I have not 'let' to acquaint her with the unreasonableness of this request (though it be agreeable to her promise), considering into what necessity they are now thrown ; their case requiring rather release than to be pressed for payment. I wrote to you long since to advise them to treat with those merchants for prolongation, which I doubt [not] but you have performed ; and therefore cannot but think them careless of their affairs. 'Gratuity' would that they should have been humble suitors to her Majesty to yield satisfaction to the merchants and dispense them for a time. But they cannot 'skill of thankfulness.' Please procure answer as soon as you may and do not forget to send over the bonds with speed ; for we both are charged with slackness in this behalf.—Westminster, 4 Feb. 1578. P.S.—The bond for the 30,000 will in no case be 'yielded unto.' Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. XI. 48.]
On receipt of your letter I went to Thomè de Salinar for the powder, and though I asked him for all in the world, it was only possible to get 20lbs. with the dust (polvorin) of it. There was much talk over the price, but it was useless to bargain for less than the 4 reals ; and indeed that is its price, and its quality is worth it. Please take heed to Juan de Santa Maria's business, for he does not cease to have recourse to me in his great need. Let me know if I can serve you in anything. I salute Donna Maria de Muxica.— Mondragon, 5 Feb. 1579. Add. Sp. 1 p. [Spain I. 19.]
Feb. 6. 548. POULET to WALSINGHAM.
On Jan 31. I received her Majesty's letter, to my singular comfort ; and as I know you are the only author and procurer of them, I trust you know that you heap these favours upon one who is and will be yours at command. All that I can do is of duty, as bound thereto by your many deserts towards me. I have thought it my duty to write some few lines of thanks to her Majesty, to such effect as you may see by the copy enclosed not doubting that you will excuse any faults after the old manner ; which assurance has been my chief comfort during my service here. Mr. Floudd tells me that you wished him to request me to provide a 'countenance' [i.e. a muff] (so they call it here) for her Majesty, which I have sent by this bearer, and is the best I can find at this time, thinking it better to send this as it is while there is some cold stirring, than to wait for a better till the cold be clean gone. I have caused this countenance to be furred as well as it can be done in this town, but have not perfumed it because I do not know what perfume will be most agreeable to her Majesty. The matter advertised to you, of the killing of one of the King's minions by the Duke of Guise, is more than half-a-year old, and was advertised by me immediately. The gentleman was called St Maigrin ; the quarrel, a matter of jealousy touching the Duke of Guise very nearly ; the fact done in the night by some suborned to that purpose, as St Maigrin passed from the Court towards his lodging. The Duke of Guise was in Champagne when this murder was committed. God deliver all good kings from such subjects as have so many murderers at command. This is the least quarrel of twenty between the King and the Duke of Guise. I remember I wrote the whole discourse of this to my lord of Warwick. Great numbers in this Court and city knew long before the death of St Maigrin that the Guise would cause him to be killed ; and he was not ignorant of it. This gentleman had no great credit with the King. It is not well, in my simple opinion, that no consideration is had of Plato's works, presented to her Majesty by Serranus [J. de Serres] ; in which behalf it were not meet that the giver were the loser. I am persuaded that this does not want your friendly care, and am not ignorant that in this troublesome time, such suits are shut out of the doors.—Paris, 6 Feb. 1578. Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [France III. 5.]
Feb. 7. 549. DAVISON to [? EDWARD] CHEEK.
We say it is a doubtful fault, when a man has done evil, to justify it ; I am therefore loath to excuse my long silence in your respect, lest you should blame my error so much the more. It shall suffice if you judge equally of my will ; which, restrained by my public duties, may perhaps incur a harder opinion with my private friends than it deserves. But I know you will not least friendly censure my fault in that behalf. Your congratulation for my late obtained suit is no new token of your friendship towards me, which seems to have a friendly participation of those accidents, be they of joy or sorrow, that befall me. Your loss therein is nothing, because in any degree of friendship, I would be loath to second or come behind you. As for the good opinion you say is conceived of my service here, I am not sorry that my friends should fall into that error, to judge favourably in my respect, though I would be more glad if it were accompanied with my desert. And if the wear of my purse, body, and mind may go for payment, and supply their wants, then I may perhaps challenge some debt to myself. But howsoever it be, I trust to be shortly eased of the burthen, every way too heavy for me, wherein I have received half a promise of her Majesty's favour, if the impairing state of things here do not cross me ; which, to acquaint you with it in one word, may be compared to a body so affected both inwardly and outwardly, that the wisest physicians are to seek with what drugs to cure it. I could give you more particulars, but my present leisure will scarce let me furnish them. My wife and I desire to be commended to my good aunt, my cousin your wife, and the rest of our good cousins and friends at Boydgate. For yourself, I pray you think that in wishing you well I come behind no friend you have.—Antwerp, 7 Feb. 1578. P.S.—Your counsel touching my health was not unnecessary, because I have not known myself in my life worse disposed than of late. The writing of this letter by my man's hand may be a token of it ; to spare my own eyes, of late much affected with an humour fallen into them. Draft (but autograph signature 'your loving cousin and friend'). Endd. 1½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 49.]
Feb. 7. 550. DAVISON to the SECRETARIES.
Draft of a letter which seems ultimately to have gone Feb. 12 in the form given below (No. 555). The Duke of Anjou continues at La Fère awaiting the end of this month, and the result of the new solicited peace with the greater devotion, in hope the States according to their promise will then hold a general assembly of all the eighteen and there, if the peace take not place, renounce their subjection to the King of Spain, and being in mind to change their master (a thing he imagines they must do of necessity) prefer him before any other. [In Margin : Being on his way towards La Fère received letters out of England by his Secretary ; upon whose coming he immediately changed his resolution of going to La Fère and is now going through to Alençon, where he continues ; some think to make provision for his voyage to England, others think to excuse himself, in case it be urged, the rather by his far distance.] But that deliberation has too many impediments to succeed as he would ; the rather since the States have effected what they chiefly brought under pretext of that promise, namely to divert him from 'partaking' with the mal-contents and withdraw such companies of his as were then joined with them. Yesterday, the 6th, the States of Artois, Haynault and Douay were to begin their assembly at Arras, to deliberate further of reconciliation. The Walloons are not yet dislodged out of Flanders, having first to receive two months' pay by virtue of the accord, which they look for every hour, the commissioners being sent to pass their muster. The peasants risen in arms in divers villages of Flanders have this last week cut in pieces two companies of French of the regiment of M. d'Hargenlieu, in revenge for outrages committed among them. The Colonels of the reiters, having as yet concluded nothing with the States for their pay, are upon their departure towards their companies, to keep them in better order. It is suspected that when these colonels have their bonds and what else they can get from the States towards their satisfaction, they will go near to play some sluttish part for their farewell, in revenge for the ill-dealing they 'presume' to have received at the hands of the States though the necessity occasioned by the alterations in the country much excuse them. But howsoever it be, their malcontentment is meantime very great. M. de la Mouillerie whom the Archduke sent to the Emperor while we were at Ghent, is returned with great speeches and promises of his Majesty's travail to reduce this country to quiet. Among other things he reports how the Emperor is given to understand that the Duke of Alençon has sent a gentleman of quality towards the Turk to persuade him to make war on the King of Spain. The intended marriage of the elder daughter of Spain to his Imperial Majesty and the provision for her transportation to Germany is confirmed by the last letters from 'Madrill,' together with the news of another young prince of Spain's death ; but whether it be the second, or the last whereof the Queen was newly delivered, is not specified. Endd. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 50.]
In reply to the representation made to him by the Deputies of the three estates of Normandy, the King declares his affection toward his subjects and desire for their relief to be such that he could wish nothing rather than to see his affairs in such a state as to allow him to reduce taxes and other imposts to what they were in the reign of King Lewis XII ; who was in a position to meet his domestic and other ordinary expenses out of his own domain, then of great value. But every one knows enough of the state of the realm and of the great expense thrown upon it by the internal troubles which his Majesty found in progress at his accession, to be aware that he cannot keep up his state without aid from his people to the same amount as was raised in previous years, and which he has decided to assess in the present : though he has kept down as much as possible his personal and military expenditure. Wherefore he desires that the petitioners will not show themselves less disposed to aid him than they were in the past, especially now when there is more reason than ever to display their goodwill, owing to the notable diminution in the revenue from which he used to be provided ; and will agree to raise the sum required in the commission. To assess this he has dispatched special commissioners, reserving to himself power to make special arrangements for remission in such districts (élections) as have suffered more than others. Acting thus, his Majesty though he had charged on the tax of a twentieth his most pressing expenses which could not without great inconvenience be postponed, is willing to release the country of Normandy from the payment of so much of the twentieth as is still to be levied, that the people may know how much he desires to relieve them. As regards the multiplicity of offices recently created, every one might be aware that his Majesty has been constrained thereto by the necessity of his affairs. He proposes to remedy it as soon as they are in a better state, and to suppress the offices as vacancies occur. Nevertheless if he found the Estates of opinion that any of these newly-erected offices were so great a burden on the people that it was not possible to wait for its suppression till it was vacant, but that this should be effected at once, he will readily agree thereto, provided they will reimburse the money actually paid out of the Treasury on account of such offices, without which he thinks it cannot be done at present, in justice to those who purchased them. And whereas it has been represented verbally by the deputies that there are several officers who have been guilty of malversations in their posts, his Majesty will commission one of the Chambers of the Court of Parliament at Rouen, or other judges of the same, to try the case of these malversations, setting apart any money that may be got by condemnations, toward the reimbursement of other 'suppressible' officers. As for the Estates' complaint that their privileges and the Norman Charter have suffered from the number of outside commissioners and the removals of causes (évocations) which often take place, his Majesty fully means to maintain these, but desires to have detailed information from the Parliament respecting them ; being ready to abstain from issuing any more writs of removal, except such as are in reason and in the cases provided for by the ordinances of his predecessors and himself, and recently in his reply to the reports (cayers) of the States-General. And as regards the alienation of the common rights, and of the moneys which have sometimes been levied in excess of the sums demanded by general commission of the States, it has been caused by the necessity of his Majesty's affairs already mentioned ; but in order to restore to the people and the villages the convenience which they used to receive from those rights, he grants that wherever they are willing to reimburse the purchasers what they paid for them, together with their legal costs, they can reenter into possession of them, without any power of refusal on the purchaser's part. To this effect the necessary powers shall be given them ; and his Majesty agrees that in future no moneys shall be levied in the country save by general commission of the Estates unless in a case of urgent necessity, when there is not time to convene them. In conclusion his Majesty desires his subjects in Normandy to be assured that loving them as he does, and as the loyalty they have always shown deserves, he promises himself that they will not depart from it. He regrets more than anyone, seeing that they have been committed to him by God to preserve, the oppression they have of late suffered from fighting men. He has tried to remedy this by all possible means ; but he hopes that by dint of the good order he is now putting into his affairs they will not again fall into such calamities, but have occasion eternally to bless the years of his reign. To begin, he is minded at once to dismiss the troops distributed through Normandy, and has ordered them to be disbanded, and the garrison confined to the towns of Havre, Caen, Dieppe, Cherbourg, Granville, with those who are in the palace at Rouen. Further he has revoked several commissions and edicts which bore heavily on the people, as will be seen by the answer to the reports of the States-General ; which will soon be brought to the Parliament of Rouen for publication.—Paris, 8 Feb. 1579. As to the request made verbally by the deputies for leave to assemble again, his Majesty permits it on Mar. 15 next, but wishes them in the meantime to take order without delay for the levy of the taxes in pursuance of the special commissions to that end dispatched. Copy. Endd. by L. Tomson. Fr. 3 pp. [France III. 6.]
Feb. 9. 552. POULET to WALSINGHAM.
Upon occasion of some bruits given out here, I asked a friend of mine two days ago to endeavour to learn the certainty of them. I have just received from him a little note containing the following. You may believe that the man is of experience, wise, and trusty. 'As regards the embarkation of which there is talk, I cannot as yet discover with certainty if M. de Strozzi is in command ; but I will make diligent enquiries. I hear however that M. de Lansac is in it, and has promised to find and equip six vessels ; la Roche of Brittany as many or more, Landreau, a revolted Poitevin, certain captains of Bordeaux, and some also, it is said, from Normandy ; have joined them ; their idea being to collect among them 40 or 50 ships of war. If that is so, there must of course be some head and leader of this enterprise. It is not said of what nature it is, nor under what pretext it is being got up. Enquiries must be made, and in time one will learn all about it. The preparations are not as yet very far advanced. 'I think that the departure and alleged journey of the gentleman in question should be closely watched ; also the time when they begin to talk of his preparations for his passage. We should also remember and take advantage of the secret nightly visit paid by Lansac to Simier [Poulet notes in the margin : I gave advertisement hereof not long before the departure hence of Symyer] and of what he said to him, that he had the means of doing a notable good service to the gentleman in question. Also M. de Bacqueville's commissions and orders sent to several people to arm at sea, in virtue of his general commission from him. 'In these times we must suspect everything, however fair it may appear. 'As for what took place between Monsieur and M. de Guise, I can discover only that during Monsieur's stay at Mons, M. de Guise only wrote to him once ; though it is true that they negotiated through M. de Rosne. It is not beyond suspicion that there is some secret intelligence between them, seeing that M. de Guise and M. de Bussy are on very good terms.'—Paris, 9 Feb. 1578. Add. Endd. with abstract of contents by L. Tomson. Fr. (copy) all but first par. 1½ pp. [France III. 7.]
Feb. 12. 553. POULET to WALSINGHAM.
Please receive enclosed a true note of the request exhibited to the King among others by the deputies of Britanny touching la Roche. It is likely that his voyage will be broken off by this occasion, and indeed, as touching Landreau and the rest also, it stands only in words hitherto, not being entered into any preparations. This morning du Vray came to me, and told me that after many conferences and many difficulties 'proponed' touching Monsieur's intended voyage to England, the King is persuaded to approve it, has given his assent to it, and will further it to the best of his power ; desiring greatly to see his brother before his departure, which du Vray thinks will be effected at the town where Monsieur embarks or some place near. He tells me that the Prince of Condé and Prince Dauphin certainly come with Monsieur, and he thinks he will be ready to sail by the end of April. I asked him what other great personages intended to follow Monsieur. He tells me he knows none but Marshal de Biron, and that Montmorency does not go. Bussy's father has been earnestly entreated by the King to further this interview between him and his brother, and la Chapelle-aux-Ursins is dispatched to-day towards Monsieur to that purpose. Nothing is omitted that may induce the Duke of Guise to come to Court, and some think that Chiverny, d'O, and Villequier are earnest solicitors herein, being persuaded that his presence will defend them greatly against the rage of the people, who no doubt are marvellously incensed against them. Mr Candyshe has repaired hither lately, and when I consider that after his long abode in Germany he now pitches in this place, where the Bishop of Ross is lately arrived, beside other occasions of suspicion which I have conceived of his doings and sayings here since his coming, I must confess that I have no good opinion of this man. He has entered into great discourses with me, and 'overthrows himself in his own tale' in many ways. Please let me know what you think of him ; meantime I will observe his actions as well as I can. He has already taken a very slight occasion to speak with the Bishop of Ross.—Paris, 12 Feb. 1578. Enclosure. And whereas the said Estates find it very strange that M. de la Roche, a native of the country, instead of embracing the relief of the poor people, under colour of a feigned and imaginary embarkation wherewith he is still threatening the inhabitants of sundry ports and towns, has under your authority drawn from them large sums and tries to continue it under pretext of some special commission which he says he has received from you, inasmuch as the execution of it would entail a charge useless to you and burdensome to the people ; may it please your Majesty to revoke all such commissions and to order that what has been taken from the people by la Roche and others shall be restored by them and to this end issue letters patent to your Court of Parliament. Add. Endd. Eng. 1½ pp., and Fr. (copy) ½ p. [France III. 8.]
Feb. 12. 554. DAVISON to SUSSEX.
I must address myself to your favour for pardon of my silence because I can hardly bring any reason to my excuse that will not rather accuse me. I hope, though my fault is the greater inasmuch I have the longer deferred to reform it, contrary to my duty and promise, that you will, notwithstanding, favourably dispense withal. For the doings here, you may perceive by the enclosed in what confused state they are, and how little hope we have of their betterment. Time rather augments than decreases the number of their miseries ; and that remedy wherein their health most consists, I mean a peace, being in common judgement as desperate as necessary (sic). But as all the actions of our life depend on the providence of God, I remit the event to His wisdom.—12 Feb. Draft. Endd. : to my L. of Sussex, 22 (sic) Feb. 1578. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 51.]
Feb. 12. 555. DAVISON to the SECRETARIES.
In my last I signified to you the departure of the Duke of Anjou. Since then we have news of his arrival at Alençon, having been refused entry into la Fère by the governor of that place ; where he made his account to abide for a time, to see what would become of our new solicited peace, or, that failing, what the States would resolve in their assembly, appointed for next month, touching the renouncing of their subjection to the King of Spain, and preferring him, in case they determine to change their master ; according to what they have sundry times given him to understand, especially during the treaty with the Walloons, rather I think as a stratagem to divert him from taking any part in that desperate action than from any intent to satisfy him in that behalf. Howbeit his ambassador here solicits this assembly very diligently, and not I think without hope of good success, if the peace with the Spaniard take not place all the sooner. The Duke's departure so far off has altered the journey of the Marquis and his colleagues, appointed to follow him to La Fère. They are going to send some others after him, but who it will be, or with what charge, is yet undecided. Touching the peace, judgement yet remains in suspense. Of Count 'Zwartzberge's' success since his return we hear nothing. What the Emperor his master has written by M. de la Mouillerie, a gentleman of the Archduke's, you may see by the pieces herewith sent ; being in substance only a repetition of his old pretended care and goodwill to pacify these troubles ; the effect as yet not appearing otherwise than in compliments and delays. Now he has named Collen as the place where to treat of peace, and promises to send them word in his next of the time and persons appointed ; request them meanwhile to 'advise of' such deputies on their part as shall be most fit to handle an action of such importance. Whereupon the Council of State have named the persons written below, and sent their advice to the States-General, where the matter is yet in consultation. Among other things la Mouillerie reports that he found the Emperor greatly moved with the embassy of one de Bourges, sent from the Duke of Alençon to the Turk, to persuade him to make war this year with the King of Spain, thereby to divert his forces out of these parts. The success of his voyage you may understand by the accompanying advice from Venice. In Hainault it seems the Marquis and his associates find the humour somewhat more temperate than they looked for. They have gone through into Artois, to see what they can effect with the States there assembled on the 6th inst. Their success 'remains in expectation.' The doubtful state of those frontier provinces, and the approach of the enemy towards Guelderland, has hastened the conclusion of the long-solicited league offensive and defensive treated at Utrecht between the provinces of Guelder, 'Phryze,' Zutphen, Groningen, Overyssel, Holland, Zealand, Utrecht, Ghent, etc., including the pacification of religion ; a matter, though without prejudice to the common union, suspected and hardly digested by the Catholics. In Flanders things are fallen into a new confusion. [Instead of the last clause one draft has : The Walloons, not yet satisfied for their first two months' pay, in the meantime continue in Meenen and Cassel, whither commissioners are sent to pass their musters.] The peasants have assembled in arms, to the number of 9,000 or 10,000 between Alost and Dendermond, where they have disarmed two companies of French 'under the regiment' of M. de Boncourt [in draft No. 556 Bomont, and in No. 557 Hargenlieu], of whom they have taken 30 or 40 prisoners, have defeated three companies of Scots serving under one Captain Cammell, and slain the said Cammell, his wife, and divers gentlemen of good note with the greatest cruelty and 'barbarism' that might be devised, and have since assaulted divers other companies scattered here and there in the country, but with their own loss. The soldiers have upon this drawn their forces together, and stand upon their guard, not without minds greedy of revenge ; so I doubt the mischief will not rest where it is. This grows from the insolence of the soldiers in exacting, spoiling, and abusing of the peasants beyond all measure, which the others take as lawful excuse for their desperate course. They of Alost have 'in the same respect' thrown out a company of the Count of 'Holloque's' regiment. In Brabant the enemy last week defeated a cornet of Duke Casimir's reiters near Guick on the Maes, of whom 40 or 50 who retired into the abbey of St Agatha were horse and man consumed with fire ; the rest either slain or put to flight. [In one draft : The Guidon, being abroad, was with such as he could gather together on the sudden, slain in his resistance.] Since then, divers of the Duke's colonels hearing that the enemy, abandoning the enterprise of Guelder, which seems to have been but a 'countenance,' has crossed the Maes, having cast a bridge over it, against Kessel, between Venlo and Ruremonde, have left their business and retired to their companies, to set some order among them, suspecting the enemy's purpose to 'attempt' them as they lie straggling and dispersed in the villages. The rest of the colonels of that nation are here soliciting hard for their pay, but hitherto without any fruit ; the like difference in Flanders and consequent disjunction of their next neighbours having so diverted the course of the moyens généraux that they cannot yet obtain enough to give them half a month's pay. What miseries they must fall into if these confusions should be long continued, you may guess by this. By the last post out of Spain we have news of the death of another son of the King's. The certainty of it you will better hear from Mendoza.—Antwerp, 12 Feb. 1578. P.S.—The names of those named as deputies to treat of the peace at Collen : The Duke of Aerschot, the abbot of St Gertrude, the abbot of Maroilles, Meetkerke, Grobbendonck, Sainte-Aldegonde, M. de Gost, M. de Rumen Waroux, M. de Beaurepart, Vander Mylen. Draft. Endd. 2½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 52.]
556. Another draft of the above. Endd. 2 pp. [Ibid. XI. 52a.]
557. Another draft, apparently the first, with some slight differences, agreeing more with No. 555. In this and the preceding one the list of deputies' name is wanting. Endd. 2¾ pp. [Ibid. XI. 52b.]
558. Another copy, probably that sent to Burghley, complete, with P.S. (dated Feb. 14) which see below, No. 560. 4 pp. [Ibid. XI. 52c.]
Feb. 12. 559. DAVISON to BURGHLEY.
It is 14 or 15 days since I wrote to you. What has happened since you can see by the enclosed.—Antwerp, 12 Feb. 1578. P.S.—Pardon me that I write so little with my own hand ; the cause proceeding from a pain in my eyes that has almost blinded me. Add. Endd. 2/3 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 53.]
Feb. 14. 560. DAVISON to the SECRETARIES, &c.
(Postscript to letter of the 12th.)
Since the closing of my letters we hear that the enemy has attempted some other cornets of Duke Casimir's reiters in a village near Eyndhoven, where one Bernsdorf, lieutenant to Count Buch, the Count of 'Sleyh,' and divers other gentlemen are slain. Their purpose was to have assailed them in three several villages at once, but the reiters having intelligence of it drew together and made head against them awhile, till overborne by numbers they were driven to fly, and are now come to Turnhout ; where Mr Norris with his regiment, being all the footmen at present in Brabant, has met them, to make head if the enemy invade any further. A number of soldiers of all nations are daily cut off by the peasants, as they are taken scattering here and there. Deputies are sent from the Four Members to stay their fury, but are like to effect little with that brutish and inconsiderate multitude. The commissioners come from the Walloons bring word that they refuse to pass muster till they have their contentment. Letter came yesterday from Spain with news of the imprisonment of the Duke of Alva, Don Frederico, his son (sic) accused of slaying Escovedo, Albornoz, and one Stephano d'Hivery ; but I hear no detail of the circumstances.—Antwerp, 14 Feb. 1578. Endd. : Postscript. 1 p. [Ibid. &c., 54.]
Feb. 15. 561. ROGERS to WALSINGHAM.
The Duke coming this evening to Canterbury, met the Flemish post who arrived to-day at Dover ; from whom he received divers letters written by Junius, 'Kuningslowe,' Schregelius, his factors in the Low Countries. By them he is advertised among other things that on the 4th inst. certain packets of letters were delivered to Mr Davison to be sent to him. In the packets were ten to himself, five to Beutrich, and four to his clerks. He thinks you either received them before the coming of this post, or rather are likely to receive them by this present bearer, who is the Flemish post. He therefore desires you 'most entirely' to send him his packets by express messenger in case they have come into your hands. As for occurrences, he is told that his reiters, being of late pressed by the Spaniards have 'had them in the chase,' and pursued them to Ruremonde. Also that the Walloons were spoiling Flanders as much as ever. The Spaniards had 4,500 reiters, and 55 ensigns of 'lansknights.' Junius writes that he has spoken with the wisest of the Council of State, who have affirmed to him that they despair of the success of the general affairs. As for the rest, he is minded by the first wind to depart from Dover towards Flushing, where Junius and Kuningslowe are appointed to find him.—Canterbury, 15 Feb. 1578. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XI. 55.]
Feb. 15. 562. Declaration by Pedro de Arandia, notary public of the town of Portogalete, to the effect that on 15 Feb. 1579 appeared before him at the monastery of the holy ladies (las beatas) of the order of St Augustine, extra muros of the town of Bilbao [?], Don Juan Alonso de Muxica ; and testified that he had bought of Ochoa del Casal, in presence of Juan de Maricheaga, notary of Portogalete, the said Ochoa's ship named San Francisco with all its equipment, stores, artillery, and ammunition, which he was under obligation to deliver to Ochoa Gomez of la Torre de Plasencia, the said Gomez fully assenting thereto ; and delivered it in absolute possession to James Geraldine, captain-general of his Holiness, there present, on payment by 'the said count' to Ochoa del Casal or Preseval de Butron [?] of 515 ducats still owing to Casal on the price of the ship and equipment, less the value of whatever Casal may fail to hand over ; and therewith Don Juan Alonso delivered the ship to the Count, who agreed with him to pay in his name the required sum to Ochoa or Preseval and acknowledged delivery of the ship. And Preseval went with James Geraldine to Portogalete to receive the money. Witnesses : San Juan de Ysasi, Pedro de Busturia, Rodrigo Abad de Jaoregui and others. Endd. Sp. 1¼ pp. [Spain I. 20.]