Elizabeth: July 1578, 26-31

Pages 89-114

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

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July 1578, 26-31

July 26. 111. POULET to BURGHLEY.
One John Bowcer of Gloucestershire, servant four or five years ago to the Earl of Pembroke, as he says, arrived lately from Italy, and has asked me to let you know that he has things to say to you which concern you nearly. He would resort to you for that purpose if he could do so 'with the surety of his life,' but he is in danger of the law for a purse taken by him in the company of Anthony Poynes, upon the discovery of which they were both forced to flee into Italy. He affirms that Poynes has returned to England and obtained his pardon. 'He beareth me in hand that there was no murder committed.' He says that he has served long in Naples, and might have continued there, but has returned in hope to be employed in the service of his country. He proposes to remain here till he has received assurance from you, which may be the more favourable if the fact be no more heinous than he reports, and Mr. Poynes be already pardoned for the same. Nothing new has happened here of late, save that ambassadors from the Pope, the State of Venice and the Duke of Savoy are gone to Mons to dissuade Monsieur from his enterprise ; the King and Queen Mother, who no doubt are enemies in heart to this journey, having also their ministers there. La Noue is gone to Monsieur, as I am advertised from himself, and it is likely that many of the religion will take the same course. Companies of horse and foot march daily to Monsieur, who wants nothing but money to do great things, and will be able to do much with a little money if his devotion to her Majesty and respect for her authority do not restrain him. Marshal Biron continues in his old seditious humour, and has done enough of late to renew civil troubles in this realm. Complaint is made by the King of Navarre, and reformation promised by the king here.—Paris, 26 July 1578. Add. Endd. 1 p. [France II. 61.]
July 26.
K. d. L. x. 643.
I received by Mr. Sommers your letter of the 18th, signifying her Majesty's pleasure that I should forbear to proceed any further in the use of my procurations for £100,000 until I should have other order given me. Wherein I will not fail, God willing, to accomplish her Majesty's command according to my duty ; though I cannot forget to tell you how much the refusal to confirm the contract made here with Spinola and Pallavicino, and the present restraint of the whole negotiation touches her credit, and how ill the matter falls out at this time, considering on what terms they stand with the French, who are not unlike to make their profit thereof. But as I think my lord will not forget the matter, I forbear to touch it further, and proceed to our news. The Duke of Alençon has already put himself in action since coming into Hainault. Bussy d'Amboise with 3,000 men has attempted and taken Mabeuge and is gone to the siege of Beaumont ; the sooner to draw his forces into that province. The towns of it and of Artois being solicited by him have sent to the States for their advice ; who have required them to remit themselves to the general resolution of the province. Alferan, his man, has been lately at Gravelines with la Motte ; to what intent is yet undiscovered. He has also sent one Beaufeu to Duke Casimir, of whom this enterprise is greatly suspected. Mondoucet in his return to Mons abode 3 or 4 days at Brussels, practising the burghers there to embrace his master's protection, and is departed not without some hope of 'recovering' that town if they could remove the garrison. Meanwhile the enemy has abandoned Soigny and is about to leave Diest and Aerschot, withdrawing his force into the town most important to keep. Baron Preyner, sent lately from the Emperor, chiefly to 'impeach the French traffic,' is returned with as little satisfaction as he brought. The other intends to repair to Don John to see if any means of peace remain, so as to prevent the mischief which threatens these countries if the war have its course. The States army removed last night to Rumenam, a place between the rivers of Demere and Boymer, which falls into the other near Mechlin. Campen is surrendered to the States of Gueldres, who hope for like success at Deventer. Ypres was on Sunday morning last surprised by the Gantois, by this stratagem : they had conveyed into the town the day or so before 30 or 40 soldiers, who were secretly lodged in a house not far from the gate. Five or six of these, disguised, hired a waggon to go out of the town, and as they issued out of the gate found means to pluck out the pin which fastened the axletree to the waggon ; by occasion whereof the horses drew away the forewheels, leaving the rest behind them. While they were occupied in bringing back the horses and 'redressing' the waggon, the soldiers within flocked about the gate, giving a sign to one M. 'd'Ask,' lying hard without the town in ambush with two companies of horse and three of foot, who approaching the gate held by the men he had within, entered the town by the help of certain burghers, became easily master of it, and having provided for the sure guard of it apprehended such as were specially suspect and carried them prisoners to Ghent ; which town has now the other three Members of Flanders at her devotion. 'Gabreell Cerbelone' is said to be arrived in Luxembourg with 4,000 Spanish and Italian foot and 500 horse. La Motte has written to the four Members of Flanders to send deputies to him, to whom he may communicate what Alferan has treated with him in the name of the Duke of Alençon's, but what that is I do not yet know. Draft. Endd. 16 July (but this date is clearly a misreading of the heading in Davison's own hand). 1½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 80.]
July 26.
K. d. L. x. 642.
Though I did not write to you by Walter Williams, whom I sent away post haste on a sudden, you must not think amiss of me ; because I had special charge to send him within an hour. I read your letter of the 18th to our Sovereign, who liked your advertisement well ; so you will do well to continue the same course and write often. Now that the Secretary is absent you have need to take the more care, to content our Sovereign's mind, who desires to hear often from thence. I doubt not of my Lord Cobham's diligence, to whom I pray you have me commended, but the more you write, I take it, the better. M. Bacqueville landed yesterday at Dover from Monsieur from whom we hope to have good news. The Scottish ambassador is here, and is to have his answer in a few days, I hope to his content. Commend me to Mr. Secretary, by whom you know the resolution here for the bonds.—Audley End, 26 July 1578. P.S.—On receipt of letters from Lord Cobham and Mr. Secretary, I will dispatch Gourley, my Lord's man, and then Lady Cobham will write. She attends diligently and is in health. Add. (with : At the Court, at 8 at night). Endd. 2/3 p. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 81.]
July 27.
K. d. L. x. 654.
114. 'The substance of the Conference that passed between the EMPEROR'S AMBASSADOR and us.'
We declared to the Ambassador that great hope was conceived by men of judgement and (sic) were desirous to have these countries restored to their ancient quietness, that his repair to Don John now that he sees what progress the French proceeding makes, cannot but be with good effect ; it being clear that this country will be alienated with the King's government unless he take some order out of hand in that behalf, by growing to a peace and withdrawing from the country. We prayed him at his access to Don John to let him understand our earnest travail with the States to persuade them to some composition, by laying before them the mischief that would ensue from a continuance of the civil wars. Yet we find by the comfort they take in the late coming of the French that unless Don John is content to withdraw they have put on a plain resolution to shake off the King's government and change their master. Nothing has done the King of Spain more harm than the jealousy he [in the notes : D. J.] has had of the Queen's mediation between him and his subjects. It has been the only impediment to his profiting by her counsel. We protested that her Majesty never affected any part of these countries for herself, nor desired their alienation from the King of Spain ; but has from time to time with all sincerity advanced the peace, which is the principal cause of sending us hither. The support she has given to the States in money or otherwise was never to any end but to keep them from the French and maintain their liberties under the King's obedience. Therefore it is a great wrong to her that either the King or Don John should conceive a jealous opinion of her. Her Majesty gave us express command that if we found Don John liked our mediation on such conditions as the States were inclinable to receive, we should repair to him and confer with him in that behalf, having letters of credit to that end from her Majesty and the King's Ambassador resident in England ; which in that case we shall not fail to do. As he is about to repair to Don John, we thought it good to let him know our opinion of the result to these countries unless Don John can be persuaded, and to declare that the more we looked into the state of things here, the more desperate we saw them becoming. To make it more apparent we wished him to consider the disposition of the people, the natural strength of the country, 'the invincibleness of their towns by fortification,' their wealth and ability to maintain a defensive war, and the late entry of the Duke of Anjou into the action. If these things were represented to Don John he might clearly see that unless he withdrew the country will be utterly lost to the King of Spain's government. First we said that if he looked into the disposition of the people, he would see that they had grown to so great a hatred of the Spanish government in respect of the extremity which they had sustained both in their persons and in their goods, that rather than return to it they will hazard any fortune and yield themselves to the protection of any other prince that will receive them. Touching the natural strength of the country, if the provinces of Holland, Zealand, and Flanders were looked into, he would see them to be so fortified by nature, what by the sea and fresh rivers, the access to them so hard, and by a few to be defended, that it would be a hard piece of work to invade them and a harder to conquer them. As for the towns, we said that not only in these provinces, but in divers of the rest, they were brought to that strength by late fortifications that the conquest of one of them would cost a year's labour with the hazard of many men's lives and the expense of infinite treasure ; of which both Don John's predecessors had made trial, especially at Harlem, as also himself, having with the expense of a million crowns at least taken but one town of importance, and that rather by intelligence than by force. Touching their wealth and ability, the people being of themselves industrious, the country fruitful, the traffic by sea open and free, and their cause itself plausible, there was no doubt that as they lacked no ability they would want no good will to sacrifice their lives for its maintenance. Touching the Duke of Anjou's entry, though perhaps the King of Spain might be 'borne in hand' either that all is done for his aid or at least that the Duke will not be able to go through without the King his brother's assistance, who is in such amity with the King of Spain that he will not only forbear to assist him but do what he can to hinder him ; yet if it be considered what great benefit the King will receive to have his brother divided from him, his competitor the King of Spain weakened by the loss of these provinces, the Crown of France made stronger by the 'adjoining' of them, the conveying of wars out of his own country and the ridding his kingdom of martial men, it will appear that whatever he has protested to the King of Spain, it is not likely that he will let go such an advantage, when he sees that by possessing these countries the King of Spain will have will rather than power to be revenged of him. We told him also that Don John was to consider that the Queen being interested in the defence of the liberties of these countries, as she has already given them assistance of money and drawn Duke Casimir hither, so she will not abandon them, but give them all the assistance she can, as she has protested to the King of Spain himself and to former governors of the Low Countries. If notwithstanding these plain demonstrations he finds Don John conceive that in case he should retire, it would be dishonourable to him to leave the enemy in the field without fighting, or that by withdrawing he would hazard the loss of the country, or that he has no commission to withdraw in that sort, or that if he should withdraw the French will possess the country ; these objections in our opinion might be thus answered. Touching the dishonour, if the victory were all but certain and the loss of the countries depending upon the loss of the battle, honour were then to be stood upon, but the same being joined with so great peril, Don John is to consider whether the smoke of honour is to be preferred before the conservation of the country, seeing that thereupon depends not only the loss of the countries, but also the hazard of putting in peril the rest of his dominions that lie dispersed in Italy, where there reigns no less discontent among the subjects, and (sic) therefore no doubt of it, are like to receive great encouragement by the train that things take here to attempt the innovation. Touching the doubt that by withdrawing he should hazard the loss of the countries, the danger may be easily avoided by the interposition of the Emperor and the Queen's promise that the Estate shall continue their obedience to the King of Spain. If they fail to do so, those princes shall employ their force to assist the King in reducing them to their promised obedience. It is apparent also that the people themselves, so they may enjoy their liberty, have no disposition to withdraw from their obedience. As for not having commission to withdraw, it is not likely that the King seeing these countries in the extremity they are in, has not given him ample authority to take such counsel as may be best for his service ; for it would be very perilous that he should be driven in every event to send into Spain to know the King's resolution. Therefore men of judgement cannot but think that his power is absolute to do what he may think fit for the King's service, by staying or withdrawing. Lastly, touching the danger of leaving the French in the country, it is evident that the States' forces being as great as they are, they will at any time be able to remove them, if not by persuasion, by force. So we say there is no reason why Don John should not withdraw, being the only way to preserve the country under the King's obedience ; the loss of which through his wilfulness or passion would hazard not only the rest of the King's dominions, but his own fortune.
'The Emperor's Ambassador's Answer to our Speech with him.'
As it appeared by our protestations that the Queen did never seek anything but the maintenance of the liberties of these countries under the King's obedience, having no intent to possess any part of them, the Emperor had dealt with her with like sincerity. Notwithstanding that many large offers have been made him such as might have induced any other prince to have given ear to them, such was the respect he bore to the King of Spain and his desire to do nothing but what might be agreeable to honour and justice that he refused them, persuading both the King, Don John, and the States to grow to some peaceable accord, considering that neither the King nor the States would take any profit by the continuance of the war. He confessed that the country was in great peril to be lost now that the French had made themselves a party to the action, and that there was no way to save it but for Don John to withdraw his forces according to the request of the States ; seeing a plain resolution, in the sundry conferences Baron Prayner and he had with them, not to come to any treaty, but rather to seek another party unless Don John retire. 'For,' says he 'if the wars continue, and it comes to a day of fight, whether he win or lose a battle, the country is like to be lost. For if he win, the people being doubtful what shall become of themselves will without peradventure throw themselves into the French protection.' On the other side, if the victory incline to the States, he saw them disposed to grow so insolent that instead of rendering obedience to the King they would erect some newshapen commonwealth, according as the diversity of their opinions and fancy should lead them. Seeing the countries so clearly in danger of alienation, he meant to deal roundly with Don John and let him understand that the Emperor sees so great peril likely to grow thereby, especially if they are annexed to the Crown of France, not only to himself as descended from the house of Austria, but also to the Empire, that he could in no case endure that Don John by his wilfulness should endanger their loss, but would employ his own forces and those of the Empire against him if he continued his obstinacy. He would advertise Don John of her Majesty's friendly care in seeking to preserve those Countries under the king's obedience, and to stay the States from going too far with the French ; and would advise him to lay all jealousy apart, and use thankfully her mediation. Whereto if he should find him to incline he would not fail to advertise us, as also of the whole course of his proceeding with Don John. He had advertised the Emperor of the honourable course held by her Majesty in this cause of the Low Countries by sending us over, and the benefit that Don John might reap thereby if he regards, as he pretends, what is most meet for the King's service. Copy. Endd. with four [Walsingham's mark] s. 7 pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 82.]
July 27. 115. Rough notes of the above interview. 3 pp. [Ibid. IX. 3γ.]
July 27.
K. d. L. x. 649.
I should have been glad if you had come in person to see us, as you promised both by letter and verbally through M. de Künigsloe, to talk over several matters which cannot well be written. But as I understand that your business has not allowed of this I would not omit to write to let you know that 6,200 florins are still wanting to complete the sum of £20,000. This is very important, because the Estates having kept back the 12,800 florins which they had advanced for M. d' Hargenlieu's levy, I am short of the same which I ought to furnish. I beg you therefore to take steps to have the sum of 6,200 florins paid over to M. d' Hargenlieu as soon as possible, according to the promise and obligation given by M. Jacques d'Affhüsen. I have given him charge of that part and handed the obligation to him. Further the Nachtgelt is short to the extent of 57,000 florins, and without it my reiters make difficulties about marching any further ; since it is an old-established custom that Nachtgelt should be paid even before the first month. I will however do all I can to make my reiters advance in hope that the Estates will see that I have the the sum as soon as possible, and that you will do your best to get it done.—Zutphen, 27 July 1578. Add. (seal) to M. d' Avidson. Fr. 1 p. [Ibid. XVII. 83.]
July 27.
K. d. L. x. 650.
117. Acknowledgement by Thierry Vander Beken, treasurer for war to the Estates of the Low Countries, that he has received from Mr. Davidson 30,000 pounds at 40 groats, Flanders currency, in cash, to pay the English regiments of infantry in the service of the States, under the commands of Colonels 'Norytz' and Cavendish. —July 27 1578. Fr. 15ll. [Ibid. VII. 84.]
July 28.
K. d. L. x. 647.
118. MR. SOMMERS'S Report of the DUKE OF ALENÇON'S Answer.
He was very glad to understand her Majesty's honorable dealing for the weal of these countries. Meaning the like he had sent a gentleman of his, La Vray, to her Majesty, to say that he would send his deputies to confer with her ambassadors. But as he saw cause to come hither sooner than he had thought, he deferred sending till he himself came to Mons ; and not being fully agreed with the States, he stayed a little longer from sending, till he could send some persons of credit, both to conclude with the States and to negotiate with her ambassadors. For that purpose he had now sent MM. Bussy d' Amboise, Neufville, and Mondoucet, and therefore begged her Majesty and the ambassadors not to mislike if he had delayed somewhat longer than they had looked for. As to his promise to do nothing without her Majesty's knowledge, he said that he was at that time in good accord with the States ; which being somewhat put back, he could not advertise her of anything of his doing, nor indeed had he done anything, nor means to do anything till he is fully agreed with the States. Here, he making some pause, I told him that her Majesty understood—from others and not from him—of his coming to Mons and helping to besiege certain places held by the Spaniards ; that he had brought in some of his forces, and the rest were at hand ; and of his acceptance of the States' offers ; of all which she had expected him to advertise. He answered that hearing that the Spaniards had taken several places near Mons, which troubled the country : 'the season of the year to pass apace, harvest-time now in hand, and the corn ready to be carried away or spoiled by the enemy unless it were speedily foreseen, he thought meet to hasten the summer hither ;' and so by taking certain places to open the passages to this town and give the people means to live better. Wherein some of his soldiers were employed, but not by his authority ; so he really has done nothing yet. Touching any jealousy of his coming hither to impatronise himself of the country and of her Majesty's protestations to the King his brother and him, in that case to oppose, he trusts that she has a better opinion of him than to suspect any such thing ; for if he meant so, he would not have dealt with the States as he has done. He would not wound his reputation so far, nor deserve her Majesty's disgrace. He trusts that she has had so long a good opinion of his sincerity towards her that she will not now change her mind. Besides he acknowledges how much he is bound to her for her favour towards him in his necessity, and therefore would be sorry to offend her, and prays her to continue her favour. As to sending any of his people to Don John before proceeding to acts of hostility, he said that it might have given Don John and others that are jealous reason to suspect him of intelligence between them. I told him that it might well be seen that the States desired nothing more than peace, as appeared by their answer to her Majesty's ambassadors, but would gladly have such as might be safe for them. They feared this would hardly be done, seeing how often he has deceived them and now bears greater hate towards them than before. He said Dampmartin had told him something of it, he forgot what. I told him the substance of the answer, and he said he could not blame them if they mistrusted the Spaniards, and wished them to retire. He had heard much in France of the Spaniard's doings, and since his coming here, more than he could have believed. He prayed the Ambassadors to stay a while if they saw cause to so do after conference between his Ministers and the States and them. He had commanded his deputies to tell them all his intentions. He besought her Majesty to continue her good will towards him. I told him that her Ambassadors had entreated the Emperor's Ambassador to go to Don John and lay before them the States' answer to them and to him, and their own opinion how important it was for Don John to come to a peace ; and that he was on his way. He commended her Majesty's care for the country, and the ambassadors' diligence. Copy. Endd. 2½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 85.]
July 29.
K. d. L. x. 663.
By the copy of the letter directed to my Lords, and the Duke of Anjou's answer to Mr Sommers you may see the course of our proceedings. By her Majesty's order I am to repair to Mons to Monsieur, where I shall receive some flourishes of great goodwill towards her, to make her the less suspect his intentions. After my return from him, seeing no hope of doing good here, and that we begin to grow in contempt (though the people here still hope in her Majesty) we mean to repair homeward, where we are given to understand we shall receive a very hard welcome. Though it be a grief to us to receive so hard measure, yet for her Majesty's sake we are chiefly sorry to see her deal so unkindly with those that serve her faithfully. So beseeching you to accept these few lines in good part, being written by an indisposed body, but a more indisposed mind, I take my leave.—Antwerp, 29 July 1578. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 87.]
[July 29.]
K. d. L. x. 651.
Seeing great delay used by the Duke of Alençon in sending his ministers hither, we thought it meet for the hastening of the matter and to learn whether they had dealt sincerely with us in recommending peace to him according to our request, and also to discover how he was himself affected thereto, to send Mr Sommers to him. That you may know how we proceeded, we send you a copy of Mr Sommers' instructions and of such answer as he has brought. And being given to understand before his dispatch from us that M. 'Champigny,' a man very dangerous to their state, and so discovered as well for practice here in the country as abroad with foreign princes by means of his discourses, who remains at Brussels, was very desirous to speak with us, we thought good that Mr. Sommers passing through Brussels should speak with him ; and wrote a letter of credit to him, praying him to communicate with Mr Sommers what he had to say to us. As we think the speech that passed from Champigny is fit to be known to you, we thought good to send you a copy of Mr Sommers' letter containing it, by which you may perceive the great fear that Champigny has of the alienation of the countries from the King of Spain by reason of the French dealing ; which is not only his opinion but that of the wisest men here and best affected to the Spanish government. They see no way to preserve it but either by Don John's withdrawal, or else her Majesty to receive them into her protection and restore them afterwards to the King of Spain upon such conditions as she shall see more expedient for their continuance in their ancient form of government and enjoyment of their privileges. The state of their affairs being such we are daily pressed to know her Majesty's resolution ; by some upon a good meaning, being greatly devoted to her. Others, who are affected to the French, are desirous to feel our mind in that behalf, in order that if they may draw from us that her Majesty means to have no further dealings in these causes they may so give it out to the people (who are greatly affected to her, and depend on her favour, and can in no wise digest the coming of the French), thinking that by laying before them the necessity of some foreign protection, and her indisposition to embrace their defence, they may draw them to like M. d' Alençon's coming. To prevent their intentions and work a countermine against them, we put them in mind of her Majesty's former goodness in granting them money and bringing Duke Casimir into the country. We 'put them also in comfort' that as she has not hitherto abandoned them, so she does not mean to withdraw her favour from them, and that we hope shortly to receive such answer as shall content them ; perceiving plainly that according as it appears from her Majesty's answer that she is inclined to continue or withdraw her favour, they will resolve to accept or refuse the French party, or at least not to use their assistance otherwise than to receive good thereby without giving them a footing in the country other than a few 'towns of retreat.' These things considered we hope that her Majesty and your lordships, seeing the mischief of allowing the French to possess these countries, will take such order as may be to her honour and safety. The credit of the French by reason of the recovery of certain towns from Don John, of which you will hear from her Majesty's agent, increases very much, and draws the liking of the people towards them. Monsieur is still at Mons, where sundry ambassadors from Italy resort to him, as from the Pope, the Venetians, the Duke of Savoy, the Duke of Florence, the Duke of Ferrara, to dissuade him from assisting the States. M. Bellièvre has also been sent by the king, his brother, for the same purpose in outward show ; but underhand to discover how the people are inclined to him, and what success his designs are like to have, that the king may resolve what course to hold. Monsieur seeks by all means to recover Duke Casimir's good opinion, and remove the jealousy he may perhaps conceive of his proceeding. To that purpose he lately sent a gentleman of the Religion, one Beaujeu, with a letter to him, of which we send a copy. By a letter written from the French frontier by La Noue, who is daily looked for here, it appears that Monsieur's forces, when all assembled, will be very great. The Emperor's ambassador, having waited long for Don John's safe-conduct, has to-day gone to him, being now at Louvain. Before his departure, we thought good to acquaint him with such arguments as we thought might best serve to persuade Don John to give ear to a peace and withdraw from the country ; and copy of which, and of his answer, we send your Lordships. Copy. Encld. in No. 119. Endd. by L. Tomson : for my L. Treasurer. 2¼ pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 88.]
July 28. 120 (bis). Another copy of Sommers' report, No. 118. Similarly endd. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 89.]
July 29.
K. d. L. x. 664.
My wife, your niece, tells me that I am greatly beholding to you for your friendly dealing towards me in my absence, and has given me express charge to be thankful for it. What credit she has with me, you and Captain 'Cokborne' know ; and therefore I dare do no other but thank you, howsoever you have deserved it. It is given out both there and here that we shall be hanged at our return, so ill have we behaved ourselves here. The worst is, I hope, we shall enjoy our ordinary trial ; my Lord to be tried by his peers and myself by a jury of Middlesex. The most heinous matter they can charge us with is that we have had more regard to her Majesty's honour and safety than to her treasure. For Scottish causes, though I wish them as good success as may be wished, yet seeing our Flanders travail be no better taken, I suppose I shall be found to deal more temperately both in those and all other causes then heretofore I have done. And if I may conveniently, I mean with the leave of God to convey myself off the stage and become a looker-on.—Antwerp, 29 July 1578. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Ibid. 90.]
I did not speak to Mr. Vice-Chamberlain since he received your letter of thanks ; at least if he saw me after he received it, he said nothing to me. Yet he was the last councillor I spoke with at Court ; and at taking leave I was bold to ask him both how her Majesty was now satisfied with your service and also of her disposition to deal with the Ambassador of Scotland. He answered that of your doings she remained now well contented, saving that she would never consent to allow the money. For the Scots, she said it was against her heart to entertain them as ambassadors, and spared not to make the fault light and a common fault, for which they had deprived her. I replied that if she made a scruple in that case, it were good to hold another course with her, and to persuade her to send home the Queen and set her crown on her head, and so to assure her herself of friendship, and not in this sort to lose the one and not embrace the other. He said he had told her so much in effect ; but what she would do, he could not tell. We have by your letters and others great cause of consultation ; but I see none to reduce our matters to such an order that we can tell the points whereon to consult, at least what advice to give her Majesty ; and so I fear your answer will not be as speedy as your case desires. Yet since I came from the Court, I solicited Mr Secretary by letter to procure a speedy dispatch to you, as a matter important to the State and yourself. I am come hither by her Majesty's precise command, as specially trusted, to view all the books of the Ordnance Office, to take them into my custody and then to lock and seal them up till a further view ; to take notes of remains, to be informed what has been issued, what money has been received, &c. as upon suspicion or rather complaint, that her Majesty has been much deceived in that office. How pleasant such an office is to me you may guess. But as I deal as with my brother, so will I answer the trust reposed in me, and by me shall they receive no harm if they have deserved none ; and what they have done must now appear before they have their books again. Thus in much haste, being at your house while this messenger gives short warning of his departure. I take my leave, praying you ever to keep my letters to yourself.—From your house in London, 29 July 1578. Add. Endd. 1¼ p. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 91.]
July 29.
K. d. L. x. 659.
Since your last writing the Queen has been moved to assent to the delivery of her bonds to Spinola and Horatio, but no argument can yet prevail. She alleges on the one side that it was otherwise agreed that the first money taken up by virtue of the great bond for £100,000 should be answerable to her for the £20,000 sent to Hamburgh, the last £20,000 sent to Antwerp for Casimir, and likewise for £5,000 delivered to the Marquis of Havrech ; which she still professes that you, Mr Walsingham, best knew. We answer that you so reminded the Prince, and were answered then that this money now taken up was so dearly borrowed for our necessity and to set the army in the field, that there was no reason to require this money of them, considering it stood in 25 per cent ; which was as we say an extreme dealing with the States, to make them lose so much to serve her Majesty's purpose at this time. We also laid before her what I have told her cannot be answered, that if she will at this time, yea, at this instant in their most need, deal so hardly with them, they will and must give themselves over to the French, and that she will repent of it more than the loss of £100,000 ; yea, she will not only lose all her money already lent, but all her good will will be buried, and unkindness raised up in its place. She is also told that by the delay, Don John receives 'comfort,' the charges of the States continue, fruitless and 'burdenous' without profit. All this and more alleged with all earnestness and importunity to her 'displeasant,' no answer will be had till we hear what is done by you, Mr Walsingham, with Monsieur. Two gentlemen from Monsieur are come to London and will be here to-morrow, Sieurs Bacqueville and de Cuiss [Quissy or Quincy] ; the latter zealous in religion, the other not malicious. I hear their errand is to break again into the matter of marriage, of which as I hear the French ambassador here has been the cause, upon some conference lately with her Majesty, to me unknown. It is said also that Monsieur says he has warrant from her Majesty, though to me unknown, to come thus hastily into the Low Countries. We shall understand more to-morrow, but to me this course is strange ; what other Councillors know of it, I am not inquisitive, but I think you, Mr Secretary, 'hath' by this time heard the like from Monsieur, if any such thing has passed. We have much ado here to bring her Majesty to accept such offers from the Scottish King and his nobles to commit themselves to her protection as all other Kings of his realm have sought but been unable to attain. It is a strange thing to see God's goodness, so abundantly offered for her Majesty's safety, so 'daintily hearkened unto' ; yet I trust she will not reject such a singular favour. I am sorry to write thus uncomfortably to you, but the abundance of grief will not suffer my hand to stay. I am sure Mr Secretary Wilson gives you as much information as he can. I find him very willing to further the expedition of your affairs ; but he finds dry answers, as we do. Thus being bold, to spare writing twice of one matter no more pleasant, to direct this letter to you both, I take my leave ; meaning contrary to my disposition, to attend here somewhat longer to beat still upon the stithy, till I may see some better issue of the work in hand, wishing you to comfort yourselves as we here do with a contenting of our consciences, and hoping quod dabit deus iis meliora. —Audley End, 29 July 1578. Holograph. Add. Endd. 3 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XII. 92.]
July 29.
K. d. L. x. 661.
I cannot so well satisfy you with advertisements as the absence of this bearer will be to your hindrance ; therefore I dispatch him the more speedily, without great matter. The Lords have read Lord Cobham's letter and yours sent by this bearer, and which they liked well, and the Queen seemed to be somewhat quickened upon the good warning you gave her touching Monsieur, for though I did not read the letter myself, it pleased her to acquaint me with that part which touched suspicion and gave cause of mistrust. Now she and the Lords are in great expectation of your dealings with Monsieur, and as you make report, credit will be given ; for though M. Bacqueville comes to-morrow with the French ambassador to have audience, and perhaps will tell a fair tale, her Majesty will be well advised by you before any resolution be determined. If Monsieur should play 'double hand Irish' and direct his doings contrary to his protestations, I fear we should be much to seek, because of our continual security and careless dealing hitherto. The more favour offered by the States, by Monsieur, by Casimir, by the King of Navarre and Prince of Condé, the greater is our negligence and the less mind have we to take the benefit of occasion presented. Unless God have ordained by His eternal will a necessity and fatal destiny not to be avoided, things could not go as they do. If you knew what care is used to get the bonds, which are not as yet to be had, you would say that fatum regit mundum, or rather that will bears sway instead of reason. I offered to deal with the merchants for their own bond, without assurance made to them, and hoped to get it, because their goods abroad would else be in danger of spoiling and their trade overthrown ; but I was not suffered to deal at all. There is some hope that the Scottish matters will go better than was thought, that the King's government will be acknowledged, and an 'overture' given for a league, to be confirmed by parliament in both realms ; and that the demand for succession to the Earl of Lenox's lands will be referred to the judges, the revenues being meanwhile sequestered. This morning the Lords are to consider these matters and to know her Majesty's further pleasure on them, for the speedy dispatch of 'Commendator Dunfarmlinge' who is in haste to return, because of the parliament and the troubles there ; which in my opinion might easily be appeased if Argyle were fully won. The King has lately written very courteously to him, and follows the same course to Earl Morton. God aid our most gracious Sovereign in this dangerous world.—Audley End, 29 July, 1578. Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 93.]
July 30.
K. d. L. x. 669.
The opportunity arising, I would not fail to communicate with you. Since we left Antwerp we have not advanced much towards a junction with Duke Casimir, being still two long days distant from him. It seems that they are not getting much good of his French troops by reason of the thwartings they have had since they came into the country ; which displeases their leaders greatly. It would have been wiser to send them back betimes than pay them with such indignities. The troupe are now a league from Tiel, at a village on the river called Lyt, belonging to the Bishop of Liège. It is ordered that the troops are to halt there—3 leagues from Bois-le-duc—this day [or to-day]. M. de Mouy has reached Tiel with the cavalry and baggage, to cross the river and join M. d'Argenlieu, who is much vexed at the disorder in the management of affairs. We have marched about plenty, and made no progress. The people and parishes about Tiel wanted to rise against us, and intended to fall upon us, if it had not been foreseen and prevented. It is estimated that the batteries will open upon Deventer to-day, with twelve battering-pieces. Duke Casimir has sent for M. d'Argenlieu to come to him—I mean without his troops—to speak to him. He will go to-morrow morning if not delayed. There is much discontent among the French for the bad pay they have received. I do not doubt that report will be spread of disorders committed by them ; but it is not said that abundant occasion was given them for so acting, though bad is bad and I am not going ever to excuse it. Besides, M. d'Argenlieu had not absolute command over them, as you know. Still he did all he could. As to other matters, you are on the touch-stone, and I need not make a longer discourse.—Tiel, 30 July, 1578. P.S. Kindly salute the ambassadors for me, not forgetting Mr. Killigrew. I think M. de Blioul will take this, who will tell you the rest. Add. Fr. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 94.]
July 31.
K.d.L.x. 673.
We are still in suspense what to think of the French traffic, from which few expect any good. In Hainault they have already recovered Maubeuge, Soigny, Rœulx, and Havrech, the latter of which they battered with cannon, assaulted with some loss of men, and won by composition. Now they are said to be before Beaumont, a town belonging to the Duke of Aerschot. Their forces there, being two regiments, under Rochepot and Combell, are estimated at 3,000 men ; the remainder of 10,000 foot and 2,000 horse they reckon to get within 25 days, besides the troops destined, as they give out, to be employed in Burgundy. Bussy d'Amboise, Montdoucet, Neufville, and Dampmartin came here last Tuesday night to treat and conclude with the Estates, with whom they have not yet entered into any particular conference. His other friends and ministers are meantime employed where they have any hope of doing good. Alferan has been with La Motte, who offers to communicate his negotiation to those of Flanders, and has requested them to send a deputy to him to that end. The Bishop of Nazareth, the Pope's legate, with the ambassador of Venice and Savoy, and one Bellièvre from the French King, have arrived at Mons ; sent, as they say, to divert the Duke from his enterprise, which, I doubt not, is the best part of their legations. The Emperor's ambassador is this day gone towards Don John to make some overtures of peace, whereof he is half desperate before he makes the trial, the proposals on either side being like to be such as will hardly be accorded. Don John still lies at an Abbey between Louvain and Diest, his forces being lodged in towns round about ready for any sudden attempt. All who come thence report that he is resolved to hazard a little, having 15,000 foot and 5,000 horse besides Gabriel Serbelloni newly come from Italy with 4,000 foot and 500 horse. The States are intrenching themselves at Rumenan upon the river above Mechlin. Casimir has passed his musters but it is thought he will attempt Deventer before going further. The public authorising of religion hangs still in the balance. Meantime they preach openly at Ghent, in this town, at Courtray and elsewhere. The surprise of Ypres caused some 'alteration' at Lille, which is since appeased. Yesterday some disorder happened at Lierre between our countrymen and the burghers, the manner of which you may perceive by the report made to one by such as came thence.—Antwerp, 31 July 1578. Enclosure (in French) : The tumult at Lierre was because an English captain carried off a villager's horse : who following the said captain to the market of Lierre began with great urgency to demand his horse. Seeing this the captain dismounted and killed the horse with his harquebuss. The burghers seeing this, the act being unjust, began to rush upon the Captain ; whose soldiers, seeing him in difficulties, ran to his aid, in such wise that some soldiers and some burghers got killed and wounded. The guard on the walls seeing this and thinking that the English had entered Lierre for some treasonable purpose began to fire upon three companies of English who were passing outside the town. These, seeing themselves killed, made off, thinking that Lierre was hostile. Subsequently the people of the place chanced to meet some horse who had gone out to plunder, and taking them for enemies flung themselves upon them and killed some. However, by the means of M. — the affair was made up and the English left the place. Add. Endd. 1½ pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 95.]
July 31.
K. d. L. x. 671.
Finding our doings called in question, I repair to your Lordship as to my 'Azilum' for help and succour. By sundry information sent over, we hear that we are as it were thrown into her Majesty's displeasure. These reports are general, therefore generally I may say I know not the just cause of them. If it be that we have not pressed a peace, nor dissuaded the States from insisting on so hard terms, we 'have injury,' for truly we have omitted no opportunity to deal openly and privately with all persons that are affected that way, for the attaining of a good peace ; and I assure you that those who are best affected to peace and to the King of Spain will not allow of any peace 'without' Don John retire. Credit me, my Lord, this is true. At the last we have so urged the matter that the Emperor's ambassador goes to Don John to sound him as to his inclination. That it may appear to my Lords what passed between us, we have sent it to them, and his answer. [See No. 114.] If it be for encouraging the merchants to disburse a sum of money to the States in advance, what good subject would suffer his (sic) Majesty's credit and honour to be called in question and not help it to his power? seeing it was done to so good a purpose, to daunt the enemy and to withstand the French practices, which daily increase [erased 'and shall carry all away'] if her Majesty do not 'forsee.' Bussy d'Amboise, chief gentleman of Monsieur's chamber, M. de Neufville and M. Montdoucet, his councillors, are come to confer with the States touching his demands ; which being known, her Majesty shall have knowledge. They have been with us and done their ordinary compliments, &c. There are no other news of moment. We sent Mr Sommers to Mons to let Monsieur know that we had waited a long time for his deputies, and that we had command from her Highness to return if they did not come in a few days. He told Mr Sommers they were gone and made the best excuse he could for the delay. We have sent his answer to the Lords.—Antwerp, 31 July 1578. P.S.—The 'Gantoyes' are very disordered people. They have taken 'Ipper' and spoiled 'Odenard' ; a matter generally misliked. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Ibid. VII. 96.]
July 31.
K. d. L. x. 670.
The Emperor's ambassador having told us that he was starting to visit your Highness we have thought good to send this letter by him to inform you that the Queen our Mistress continuing firm in the desire she has ever had of seeing these troubles appeased and the people restored to the obedience of the King their lawful sovereign, the principal cause which has moved her to send us hither has been that we might induce the States to come to terms with the King. Wherein her Majesty walks so sincerely, and we have so diligently employed ourselves, as we feel sure, when your Highness has heard of it from the ambassador, to whom we have imparted the whole course of our negotiation, you will no less judge of it. And forasmuch as her Majesty has also bidden us to repair to your Highness for this matter, we beseech you to let us know if our intervention for the furtherance of the peace, upon the terms proposed by the Estates (for we can bring them to no other conditions) will come to any good effect or not. If you find it good, we are ready to set out, to employ ourselves in this good work, which will, we hope, turn to the profit of the King, as her Majesty desires. To this end she has given us letters of credence ; as has also the King's ambassador resident with her. Awaiting your Highness's answer, we humbly kiss your hands. Copy in writing of L. Tomson. Endd : Copy of our letter to Don John, dated the last of July 1578. Fr. 2/3 p. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 97.]
July [?]. 129. A MEMORANDUM 'touching the LOAN OF MONEY, &c. to the STATES.'
The proceeding with the Marquis. The first article between her Majesty and the Marquis of Havrech for her bonds for £100,000 carries that payment of so much as should be taken up by virtue Credit for 100,000. of those bonds should be paid within 12 months after their delivery to the States. But if peace were concluded within that time, then the payment of so much as had been taken up should be repaid to her Majesty before the ratification of such peace, or 12 hostages sent to England for security.
Aid promised under the conduct of a nobleman. 5,000 foot, 1,000 horse. It was concluded in the same treaty that a certain power of men should have gone over from hence to the aid of the States, with one of the Nobility for a general.
The promise of aid revoked, and in lieu thereof was promised for the levy of £40,000 besides the obligation. 6000 Swiss. 5000 Reiters This fact was altered, and for the supply of English forces was appointed an aid of 6,000 Swiss and 5,000 reiters under Duke Casimir. In consideration of the acceptance of which, promise was made by her Majesty to lend them £40,000, besides the obligations for £100,000 upon their bond, to be repaid within a 10Mar. 77[8]. year, as appears in Daniel Rogers' instructions.
Upon this condition the States were content to receive the aid 21 Mar. of Germans and Swiss as aforesaid, which otherwise they would not have done, the number being greater than they had need of, or were able to maintain without such assistance ; seeing it far surmounted the aid accorded by her Majesty of her own subjects. Duke Casimir accepted the charge, upon the receipt of £20,000 from her Majesty, at the end of May. The £20,000 was sent over on May 15, by Saltonston, with special instructions to Mr Davison subscribed with four of the Council's hands, for delivery to the States. In which instructions was inserted the condition that the sum should be repaid out of the first sum taken up by virtue of her Majesty's bonds. The procurations were sent to Mr Davison the 16th March. The last £20,000 was sent by Saltonston the 16th May. In hand of L. Tomson. Endd. with mark. 1¼ pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 98.]
July [?]. 129 (bis). ABSTRACT OF PROCEEDINGS touching the LOAN, etc.
13 Dec., 1577. By treaty with the Marquis of Havrech an aid of forces was agreed on, to be sent from England.
Dan. Rogers instructions. 10 Mar. It was found meet to exchange this for a loan of money towards levies to be made by Duke Casimir.
eodem. For these levies £20,000 was assigned and sent over by Hoddesdon ; another £20,000 was delivered to them at their first arrival in the Low Countries, and further promise of her Majesty's bonds for £100,000 according to the 'tenure' of the former treaty.
Dispatched the 8th and 12th of March. Accordingly two procurations were made and sent over to Mr Davison and George Gilpin for the provision of these sums to be borrowed upon her Majesty's bonds, either in the Low Countries, or in High Germany, or both, as they could find credits.
Dispatched 18 March. 19 March. The City of London gave their bond for security. Mr Davison received directions as to his negotiation.
14 April, 1578. Her Majesty's former treaty being received again by the Marquis of Havrech is again confirmed.
To Mr Rogers, 27 April. Of the last £20,000 to be delivered to Duke Casimir upon his rendezvous in the Low Countries, some stay was made, as it was supposed the Estates would be supplied by virtue of the bonds.
12 March, 1578 (sic). Upon new deliberation, the latter £20,000 was sent over by Mr Saltonston, to deliver to Mr Davison, with directions how he should deliver it to the States to be sent to Cologne to Duke Casimir.
27 March to Mr Davidson. The cause of hastening away this sum was to induce the States to break off their treaties with the Duke of Alençon ; which, notwithstanding, was afterwards countermanded, but immediately enlarged.
22 May. From his Majesty to Mr Davidson. Upon advertisement from Mr Davison of the States' proceeding with the Duke of Alençon, he promised to send them such aid as they shall desire, and to send over Lord Cobham and Sir F. Walsingham to confer with them. Mr. Davison is further ordered to write to Duke Casimir to cause him to delay coming to the rendezvous till he hear of the States' proceeding with the Duke of Alençon ; which, being discovered, the £20,000 shall be sent him.
20 May. Articles presented by Mr. Davison to the States. Apostilled. Upon return of the States' answer—that they could not but be careful for their lives, and therefore would not proceed with Monsieur if her Majesty would resolve upon matter sufficient for their defence, which they stood in hope to receive comfort by her ambassadors promised [qy. conformably to her amb.'s promise] ; otherwise they must be forced to conclude with him — Lord Cobham and 12 June [sic] Sir F. Walsingham were sent over.
Their charge was to treat for peace, to inform themselves of the state of the countries, to have regard to the treaty of the States with the Duke of Alençon.
14 and 18 July. During this suspense and doubt how the States and Monsieur might proceed, her Majesty stays the execution of her procurations. Lord Cobham and Sir F. Walsingham earnestly solicit their execution.
28 July. From the Lords to Lord Cobham and Sir F. Walsingham. Direction is given that Mr. Davison should be charged to retain the bond for £100,000, and not to yield to the use of it unless he received a warrant to that effect.
Memo. in [?] Dacison's hand. Endd. 2¼ pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 99.]
You may perhaps be surprised, prima facie, that occupied as you are with the defence of your country against those who wish to overthrow it, I should have been so bold as to write to you ; nor do I doubt that it will seem to you a proof of rash presumption considering my lack of experience as well in the handling of political affairs as in the fashion of writing well. But if you will have the patience to read to the end, you will as I hope have some satisfaction. Three principal reasons have induced or rather constrained me to take this step ; the first, my singular affection towards the observance of the Catholic religion, which I have all my life professed and,if you please, shall profess, for I know that its safety depends on the quiet both of this country and of yours ; the second the piety, stimulated by goodwill and reverence, which I have always borne towards the good estate of your country under the pretext of whose preservation I see everybody employed in such sort that I hope it will soon become more tranquil ; if it does not by ill luck fall into greater calamities than ever. The third is the desire for reciprocal friendship and good neighbourhood which binds me to you, hoping hereby to draw you away from the blunder and odium of such a war as you are now waging against your natural lord and prince ; considering too that the king my master in his anxiety for the tranquillity of Christendom, and yours in particular, with his accustomed kindness and the singular affection he bears you, has intervened both by word of mouth and by letter to bring about that tranquillity, as is known to all of you. It has therefore seemed good to me to let you understand, and to represent to you that you should not refuse the intercession of a prince of such quality, still less the offers of your own prince, nor the opportunity presented, before things become more embittered ; and for the reasons which I will tell you. Before going further however, I would beseech you to lay down and cast behind you all passion and perturbation of mind, and judge of this discourse not superficially but according to truth and with minds well made up. And if an urgent necessity concerning the service which every man owes to his prince and country did not constrain me to utter what were better concealed in my heart, I pray you to believe that I should not have been so bold as to come forward to do it as it ought to be done. It seemed to me however of importance to your honour and to the preservation of your country. If there is even anything unacceptable to you, I pray you to pardon me, and think that my good wishes for you and the respect which I bear compel me to act thus ; hoping that, recognizing the truth by experience, you will be grateful for the warning which with all deference I offer. There is none of you who does not know what the very atheists admit, that there is no foundation on which commonwealths may be more firmly established, even as on a rock, than religion ; the chief basis of the power of monarchs and the execution of the laws, the obedience of the subjects, the worshipfulness of magistrates, the terror of evil-doers, and mutual friendship among men. This holds together as a great edifice the body of the commonwealth, so that if this be corrupted the commonwealth must fall. For which reason we see that the legislation of old discreetly ordained that one only inviolable religion ought to be tolerated ; and hence it is that no sedition is more dangerous either for the state or for religion or for laws and customs than when the subjects are divided between two opinions, as experience has taught us, unhappy that we are. Which being so, seeing that the idolaters of old, uncertain what they ought to believe, and having no knowledge of God save what nature let them see amid the darkness of reason, without one spark of divine grace, were careful to maintain in every commonwealth one absurd and ridiculous religion, by how much stronger reason ought we Christians who have a certainty of our belief by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and by the word of the Son of God and His presence, by the continual succession of the Church and infinite testimonies else, to be well-affected to the maintenance of our Catholic religion. This is why the Catholic King, remembering his oath to maintain it, nay more, to tolerate no other in the countries subject to him, has resolved to bring his vassals back to it with all speed, and to that end to employ all the means which God has pleased to lend him ; the more so, that God's law forbids him who knows the truth to follow the opinions of those who have gone astray. You know that the divine law bids you obey not sovereigns only but magistrates, except when they give unrighteous commands. The subject's obedience united to the King's command is a bond which maintains in greatness the commonwealth, which quickly falls when it is dissolved ; for there is nothing more dangerous than disobedience and disrespect of the subject towards the prince. It is much better to bow before the sovereign in all obedience than to offer an example of rebellion. Obedience to the edicts of those to whom God has given power over us is a law both divine and natural, so long as they are not contrary to the law of God, which is above all princes ; every man to the lowest vassal owes an oath of fidelity to his lord against all men, save his sovereign prince, so the subject owes obedience to his prince against all save the Majesty of God, who is absolute lord of all the princes in the world. Again, as by law divine it is forbidden to speak evil of your prince, and not only that, but to attempt anything against his honour, the Scripture says that it is wicked, however just an occasion one may allege, to rebel against a just, element and equitable prince. I cannot use a better example than that of son and father ; the law of God says that he who curses his father or mother shall die. If the father is a murderer, a thief, a traitor to his country, incestuous, a parricide, a blasphemer, an atheist, I admit that all the punishments that can be devised were insufficient for him, but I say that it is not the part of the son to inflict them. Then the subject is not entitled to take any steps against his prince, cruel and tyrannical as he may be ; though it is lawful for him to run away, to hide himself, to parry the blows, but to suffer rather than to rebel. If this is due to a tyrant how much more should you obey a king who all his life has held nothing in more special commendation than the honour of God, the consideration of the Catholic religion, the repose of his subjects. That is the cause, as I am assured, why you must now be summoned to return to his obedience. I make [no] doubt that he will treat you like a good prince, as you were before these troubles his good and faithful subjects. And to remove all occasion of distrust, I know of a truth that in the provinces which return to him amicably, he does not intend to have a Spanish or other foreign garrison unless by your consent or if necessity requires ; and of this such assurances are offered as you may think good, such I mean as you shall desire, with such diminution of taxation as in your discretion shall be thought fitting for the relief of the people. I know that many persons rely on the protection of a foreign prince. Now I will say nothing as to the unlawfulness of foreign princes maintaining a rebellion among the subjects of others, and I will pass over the door which those who thus act open to rebellion among their own subjects, and for the sake of others put their own state in danger, to their perpetual blame and dishonour ; I will only warn you that it is not lawful for the vassal to exempt himself from subjection to his prince, and become subject to a foreigner, and the protector often leaves his adherents in their danger. And since the balance has lain between honour and profit, the protection of the prince has been shifted in such wise that when protection is changed to sovereignty, he may count himself secure who places the sheep under the guard of the wolf. Wherefore if you consider what you are doing, you will find that by putting yourselves under the protection of another prince than him to whom you are bound by God and the laws, besides the injury to your sovereign, that the change will be as pernicious to you as the loss of his countries will be intolerable to the king. And whereas it is not permissible to propose anything prejudicial to one's king or country, I would point out to you that the origin of those wars between King Francis and the Emperor was for the protection of Robert de la Marche ; King Lewis XII reduced the Genevese to his obedience under colour of protection ; and King Henry II seized Metz, Toul, and Verdun under pretext of protection. That you may then not fall into the hot fit of fever and to obviate an imminent war, have some regard at least for your posterity, lest through wicked and mad obstinacy it be brought under the yoke of intolerable and lasting servitude. Consider I pray the insolence of the foreigners whom you are calling to your aid ; their murders, rapes, arsons, robberies, in their own country ; their small respect for justice ; their contempt of religion ; and you will hesitate to put yourselves in the power of those who have already divided your property, and boast how they turn you out of your houses, and seize your wives, your daughters, your goods. Remember how you will fall from your ancient honour, how much reputation you will lose, how you will be wanting to your first loyalty ; call to mind how inhuman is civil war, against men of the same nation, province, city, father against son, brother against brother ; yet more to tear oneself from the obedience of one's natural prince and give oneself over to another ; recall your solemn oath, not only to maintain the Catholic religion in word but to further it in act ; think how your ancestors carefully observed it ; and that the memory of their name be not buried at a stroke. Suffer it not to be transported from your provinces, together with the relics, bells, and other sacred things given for the service of God. Think of the promise you made to his Majesty in your letter of the 8th of last September, to maintain the Catholic religion with the obedience due to him, as in the time of the Emperor, Charles V ; for if ever any oath bound a people to keep its faith towards its prince, this constrains you. You know well that in thus promising you stipulated in accordance with your duty ; and if you fail now to be faithful to it, think you not that God will be wroth with you ? Know you not that all the evils which we suffer have their origin in His just anger? Have no regard to the sophistical solution, which is insufficient to release you from a solemn promise, of saying that you would limit it to merely tendering his Majesty such obedience as was rendered to the Emperor, and not to maintaining the same Catholic religion ; because the obedience to the Emperor was rendered within one only religion, so that being obliged to one you are of necessity bound to the other, the two points being indivisible. Receive then the amnesty which the King offers, whereby the memory of all past calamities will remain entirely blotted out ; no more enquiry being made than if they had never happened. And if piety, loyalty, religion, if the obedience due to your prince, if laws divine and human, if the pollution of sacred things, the profanation of sanctuaries, the overthrow of your country, the tears of widows, the oppression of orphans, the plague and famine which tread on the heels of this war, cannot move you, at least, if you are bereaved of all higher feeling [sentiment de divinitè], remember that your fields formerly fertile will lie fallow, your rich houses will remain desolate, your towns once renowned and opulent will be forlorn for the loss of their most ancient ornaments, the edifices both public and private, and what is worse, the provinces be as it were partitioned [qy. leantionnees] by this pernicious discord. I doubt not that on thus putting things before your eyes and awaking the memory of your predecessors, following their footsteps and continuing your old fidelity, you will keep your promise. And whereas many people try to make us believe here that the Prince of Orange is satisfied to have amplified his conquest of Holland and Zealand with the cities of Antwerp, Ghent, Mechlin, Brussels, and Utrecht, and wish to persuade us that under the pretence of piety towards his country he will exhaust your treasure and finances, and intends with most cunning people to withdraw from the press, having set you by the ears that he might fish in troubled waters, I hope that following his wonted discretion and prudence he will set you the first example of not failing in duty. Otherwise [if] you refuse to accept the reason offered you, abusing the good nature of your prince, be sure that he will be forced to oppose you with such means as seem to him best to remove from your eyes the veil that deceives you, and such as the law of nations permits to be used by every man who does not recognise a superior. If you will take heed to safety, you shall hear now by what way you may take the yoke of oppression from off you. It behoves you to provide for everything according as the occasion presents itself ; if you let it slip, it will not return to your hand at any time when you may wish for it. Whereof I humbly beseech you in God's name, and on my own part for the conservation of Christendom, with all my heart. Copy. Endd. by Burghley : Admonition to the States, with date, Fr. 21 pp. [Holl. and Fl. VII. 100.]
July. 131. MEMORANDUM as to the TRADE with the HANSE TOWNS. 'What liberties the Queen's merchants ought to have in the Hanse Towns and their jurisdiction before the lately granted privileges in Hamburgh.'
By ancient grants and compositions ; to have free traffic in the land of Prussia, wherein is the city of 'Danske' and in all places of the Hanse, and freely to buy and sell with all persons both of that nation and others, and to return at our pleasure with our goods reciprocally and as amply as they had (sic) with us, paying the customs and duties ; by charter of the great Master of Prussia in 1409, by composition between the commissioners of King Henry VI on one side and the orators of the Master of Prussia and of the Hanse towns on the other side in 1436 and 1437, and by the treaty of Maestricht (sic) 19 Sept. 1473, By the late convention in 1560 ; to have the like liberties of traffic in all things in the Hanse towns as is granted to them to have in England.
'What we have enjoyed before the late grants of privileges in the town of Hamburgh.'
We have not 'of long time' enjoyed our due privileges aforesaid ; for long before they were granted in Hamburgh, the Hanse towns, without all justice, humanity or good reason took from us the use of all the ancient privileges. They advanced our custom from 2s. to 15s. on a pack of cloth. They most barbarously and unnaturally restrained us not only from traffic, but also from buying victuals, and from all liberties ; not only such as were due to us by privilege, but also such as were permitted to all strangers. All which matters appear by special 'doleances' exhibited, we not having done anything against the former agreement to forfeit our privileges or to deserve so unkind dealing ; which matters gave occasion to 'examine their doings by justice' in the time of King Edward VI, of Queen Mary, and of her Majesty. Hereby we were forced to seek privileges at Hamburgh, which otherwise we needed not to seek, but might have enjoyed them by the ancient free traffic between us and all the Hanse towns. But elsewhere the Hanse towns, both by 'colouring' strangers' goods and deceiving our prince of duties, and by not permitting mutual traffic to English subjects, and for other good causes in law, had forfeited all such privileges as they had. And since the time of the late restraint between England and the subjects of Burgundy, some 'pretended' Hanse towns did, according to the vigorous placards of the Duke of Alva, seize Englishmen's goods, as arrived in the dominions of the King of Spain, and not within the privileges.
'What liberties we now lack and pray to have.'
First, for the town of Hamburgh, we pray that the special agreement between them and us may be revived, being, we trust, honourable and profitable to both parties. And we require to have mutual and free traffic with all the towns of the Hanse and in their jurisdictions, as is permitted to them in England by order upon the treaty anno 1560, to which they were parties. They have enjoyed the effect of this by her Majesty's goodness, and it was agreed they should send it confirmed under their common seal ; but they have not done so. Else we pray that their privileges may remain forfeited, and they be used here as we there. Meantime, in order that her Majesty's subjects be not overreached by indirect policy, that the 'Hansers' may not be suffered by any licence to transport such excessive number of cloths more than they usually carry, as may suffice to furnish themselves for a long time without us, and restrain our traffic thither. Date, Julii 1578, in Burghley's writing. Endd. 2 pp. [Hanse towns I. 45.]
July [?]. 132. 'The effect of the privileges granted by the town of Hamburgh to the English merchants more than other strangers have.'
A statement of the alleged privileges (authority to choose a governor, and keep courts ; jurisdiction to decide other than criminal causes among themselves ; right to 'dye their cloths to be sent to Germany' ; to pay no greater toll than citizens of Hamburgh ; 'for victuals, to have the like liberty as townsmen' ; to have 'the liberty of the beam' as townsmen, etc.) with replies showing that all of them are either reciprocally enjoyed by Hamburgh merchants here, or are common to all traders there, or else matters of ordinary justice. Copy, in the same hand as the last. Dated in Burghley's hand, 1568 [obviously wrong]. Endd. by his secretary with date 1578. 2 pp. [Calendared in error under 1568 (No 2714).]
July. 133. Petition of the Merchants Adventurers to the Privy Council respecting restraint of trade with Hamburgh.
'In all humbleness shewen to your honours' the Merchants Adventurers, that whereas they have by their Delegates from January to June last treated with the Senate of Hamburgh for the amplifying of the privileges given of late years to your 'orators,' order has by the said senate been taken, upon decree, as it is alleged, of the confederates of the Hanses at Lubeck that no privileges should be granted afresh to them nor the present enjoyed after the feast of Katherine next coming ; with further ingratitudes as appears more at large from the copy of their answer herewith. It has been thought meet to advertise you of this with request to you so to proceed for continuance of traffic, relief of your suppliants, and 'supportation' of the honourable state of this realm as to you is known most meet. Date in Burghley's hand. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. I. 46.]