400. The DUKE OF ANJOU to COBHAM.
I am sending a courier to the Queen of England, whom I pray
you to furnish with a letter of commendation, and to beg her from
me that the deputies may set out without delay to her Majesty, to
treat of our marriage, which is the sole consideration that has
moved me to seek the acceleration of their journey. If you get
any news sooner than I do, I should be glad if you would impart it
to me.—Le Plessis, 17 Aug. 1580.
P.S.—I have also to send you the dispatch for the Queen, promising
myself that I shall have a speedy reply, and praying you to
use diligence thereto. I was greatly pleased with what M. la Fin
said to me from you.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1½ p. [France IV. 134.]
401. A REPORT ON PAPISTS.
The Earl of Westmorland, riding from Paris to Rheims, and
lodging at the Swan there, sent for Dr Webbe and Mr Bayllye to
sup with him. At supper, Dr Webbe demanded of the earl to what
end the King of Spain had prepared his great army. To whom the
earl answered—'and took bread and did eat it'—that the army
was prepared for England and Ireland ; for which cause he with
other Englishmen that had the King's pension were sent for into
Spain. Also he said that the King was staying only for 35,000
Italians from Italy ; but he wished that Portugal had been 'on a
fire' so that the King had not meddled with it, for had not that fallen
out so unluckily, he would have seen England in short time, and
Dr Saunders have lacked no help in Ireland.
Also he would often say 'and if' he had been as malicious as she
(meaning the Queen) he might have been in his own ere this
Also he said he would never come into England but to the end it
should be Catholic ; and on that condition he would willingly lose
his life in the last battle to seal up the peace withal.
Moreover he said they might all curse the Earl of Leicester, for
he being one of the chief of their conspiracy craved pardon and
disclosed all their 'pretence' ; so that their company durst not
come in to them, but left him and the Earl of Northumberland in
Besides he said that the Earl of Leicester sent one over to kill
him and Lord Copley, but he hoped to see the day to meet him in
the field, when he may be revenged on him and lend him a lance
in his breast for his labour.
The names of priests.
1. Wilson, about London or at Mr Gage's.
2. Blackwell, in London.
3. Short, otherwise Stalie, in Holborn.
4. Bennett, in London.
5. Nicolson, in London, or at Mr Bennett's in Essex.
6. Appleton, in Essex at my lady Pawlett's at Boxley.
7. Vivian, at Mr Martyn's of Long Melford in Suffolk.
8. Ford, otherwise Harwood, at the Yeats' of Lyford in Berkshire.
9. Stamp, about Sir George Pecham's or my lady Tregonion's in Hampshire,
or very near thereabout.
10. Scott, about Kent.
11. Corry, otherwise Pawle, in Hampshire with Mr Carrell.
12. Norris, with Mr Gylbarte, and Mr Garves Parpoint, and Mr Gifford.
13. Clifton, about Buckinghamshire.
14. Eake [?], about 'Lankyshire.'
15. Martyn Aray, about Hampshire.
16. Mr Fytton, dwelling about Windsor, has one who goes in a blue coat and
is named in the house nothing but Richard ; his other name I know not.
17. Johnson, lying at the 'Spittle' with Mr Hare ; and this Hare is he who
conveys over to Rheims and Douay at least £400 every year.
Endd. : 18 Aug. 1580. A report made by A. B. late servant to
the E. of West. [France IV. 135.]
402. DR. RUY LOPEZ to LEICESTER.
Being here in Walsingham's house, I thought it well to let you
know what the ambassador asks of her Majesty, beseeching to be
a means with her for her consent, seeing that it is a matter so
necessary for the defence of our realm of Portugal. As the King
Don Antonio says, it will ever be devoted with all its might to the
service of this realm against all others, and there will remain a
league which will never be broken. Wherefore I pray you herein
to show yourself a true Portuguese, and I promise to be not only,
as I am, your doctor and servant, but your slave. The work in
hand is to make that realm free and this secure. The ambassador
begs that you will arrange for the Queen to see him (if it were
secretly with me alone), that he may tell her what he thinks.—
Barn Elms, 19 Aug. 1580.
These are the things that the King of Portugal asks of the Queen
1. Twelve ships well equipped with artillery, men and munitions.
2. Two thousand harquebusiers with their officers, who will all
be paid in Portugal from the day of leaving England till their
3. As much bronze ordnance of all sorts as the Queen may be
willing to direct ; the realm being in great need of it.
4. A thousand quintals of gunpowder.
5. Two thousand quintals of iron balls of every sort.
Payment will be made in Portugal, in coin, jewels, or specie as
the Queen shall please.
I, the ambassador of Don Antonio, have written and signed this
with my own hand : John Rodriguez de Sousa.
Add. (Seal). Endd. Ital. 1 p. + ¾ p. [Portugal I. 38.]
403. COBHAM to the SECRETARIES.
Though the peace has been so thoroughly 'travailed in' that
some of it might have been justly conceived, and lately the rather
that the King sent the King of Navarre's agent to Monsieur in
company with M. Strozzi, yet all this has brought forth no further
fruits but that adhuc est messis in herbis. However since the
King's last dispatch to Monsieur, and Chassincourt's departure, his
Highness sent Captain la Sale to the King of Navarre with the King's
intention ; wherein were good offers, which I partly signified in my
last. But it seems these evil chances hinder the furtherance of the
desired public repose, for Captain la Sale was murdered by the way
and the packet lost. Therefore the King now purposes to send
Chassincourt to the King of Navarre, which would further the
'effecting' of the peace, because he is accounted to be a faithful
dealer, and agreeable to all parties. If la Fère is not taken with
great facility it is thought peace will be the willinglier hearkened
Those in that town made a sally on the 12th inst. at 10 o'clock
at night, 'about the defence of their ravelins,' and slew sundry
The King continues the preparations of his sundry arms, on
which a great part of the money which is to be levied by means of
these eight new edicts will be speedily spent.
Marshal Biron has been compelled to retire and to separate his
forces ; they fall sick of the coqueluche so fast about Bordeaux.
The Marquis de 'Montecho,' eldest son to Don Alfonso d'Este,
uncle to the Duke of Ferrara, is contracted to Mile Anne de Vaudemont,
the Queen regnant's sister ; which is as yet kept secret. Their
alliance has been procured by the Cardinal of Este, since neither
the present Duke of Ferrara, having now had two or three wives,
nor any other of that House has children, and the young Marquis
is accounted heir to Ferrara.
The Duke of Savoy is married privately to the Marchesa di
Pianezza, the daughter of the late Duke's chancellor. She has had
three children by the Duke. The Bishop of Turin and M. de Signy,
general of the Duke's galleys and kinsman to the lady, were
present at the marriage.
The Duke of Nevers is gone towards Piedmont to confer with the
Duke about this marriage, for after the decease of the Prince of
Piedmont, the children of the Duke of Nevers are in expectation of
Though the Duke of Savoy offered to lend this King money, it is
not accepted ; but the Duke of Maine, what with 'laying jewels to
gage' and delivering of bonds, has obtained by earnest intreaty,
and partly by constraint, 80,000 crowns among the merchants in
Lyons, whence he is not yet gone.
Duke Montmorency has dispersed his companies for the great
infection in those parts, and is retired with his wife and children to
a small place beside Pézenas, within 6 leagues of Montpellier,
where they are dying much of the plague.
M. Châtillon remains for the most part at Sommier near Lodux
in Gévaudan, within 12 leagues of Montmorency.
Turenne is in Lauraguais with 200 horse and 600 harquebusiers,
within 12 leagues of Toulouse. Count Rochefoucault is at Saint-Jean
d'Angely with 200 good horse, gentlemen of the Religion from
Poitou, and 600 shot, purposing to make towards the King of
Navarre, though M. de Rufec has put himself in the field to hinder
his passage over the Garonne. No other towns are as yet besieged.
They suspect that the Prince of Condé is preparing some sudden
rescue for the frontiers and Sedan for the relief of la Fère, but
there is no sign of it.
The French Consul left Lisbon about the 10th ult., and has come
here with letters of credit from Don Antonio for their Majesties.
He has given out that their new king is well accompanied by the
nobility, and has been presented by the clergy with jewels and plate
from the monasteries and churches ; and that the Duke of Braganza
receiving a loving letter from Don Antonio by a friar has since
been disposed to repair to the Court. Whereon he has sent his
cousin, Don Diego de Lancastre, to assure the King's favour to him,
with determination presently to repair to him himself ; having been
afflicted with the loss of a son and two daughters, deceased of the
I send the names of the new King's Councillors. And as the
French Consul assures people here that an ambassador has lately
passed to her Majesty I do not enlarge on those affairs at present.
They have advertisement in this Court that 1,000 Scots are
preparing to pass into Portugal. But they certify from Spain that
the King's army having taken Setubal are approaching Lisbon,
assuring themselves that the conquest is in their hands.
A Spanish courier has passed into Italy with great diligence,
carrying letters from Badajos of July 22, with commissions to make
new levies in Italy ; and so goes from Milan to Florence and Naples.
After the Spanish companies lately departed from the Low
Countries had mutinied for three days in the Contado [qy. Comtat
Venaissin] they were appeased and satisfied with eight pays (sent
from Florence), whereas there were due to them thirteen. Whereon
they departed to Finale, to be embarked in the 25 galleys.
I inclose a letter from a friend of mine, who writes from Nantes,
showing the state of those parts. I also send the residue of the
Edicts published.—Paris, 20 Aug. 1580.
Add. Endd. : from Sir Henry Cobham to Mr Secretary Wilson
and myself. 3 pp. [France IV. 136.]
404. THOMAS COTTON to BURGHLEY.
I trust you remain in good opinion of me ; and whereas I am
'grown in good acquaintance' with one here who is thought to
understand very secretly the passages here, and is employed in
them, he is willing to 'certify' to you, that you may be secretly
'kept unto' them. And after proof of such service done and
allowed by you, that you will be a means for some recompense for
him as I have heard men of like service have had. Please let me know
your pleasure herein. I send herewith a discourse of his written
to me, with a copy of a letter sent by his 'Altezza' to the Estates.
The commissioners sent by the Estates to the Duke of Anjou
required to have full authority to conclude all things touching their
commission ; but as I am secretly told they must either return
before, or have larger commission.—23 Aug.
Add. Endd. : Mr Tho. Cotton from Antwerp. 1 p. [Holl.
and Fl. XIII. 47.]
405. COBHAM to the SECRETARIES.
I was appointed today to have audience of their Majesties, but
the King was gone to Saint-Germain-en-Laye, where he takes great
delight, and therefore I was directed to Queen Mother.
I declared how the Queen was certified of the continuance of these
civil troubles, and that those of the Religion were annoyed and
persecuted, to her grief and that of her best subjects, who were moved
therewith, and were loath to see the cause of the marriage so far
advanced as to be treated of towards a conclusion by commissioners
of that high quality while the war continued against the Protestants
of this realm ; which stirred up divers suspicions, reviving the remembrance
of some matters past and executed with great terrors not
long since in these parts.
At my first coming to her presence she excused the King's
departure, and said that he had requested her to hear my
Wherewith incontinently she broke off my speech, and in an
earnest manner said this showed that the Queen meant to defer this
treaty, and therefore desired she would speak as plainly as they did,
and let them know her mind, whereby they 'might enter to make'
some other assured amity, for this might breed great inconvenience,
more particularly to her ; pleading her age, and thus to see her son
remain in hope of marriage and never to marry, as also that thereby
the King of Spain was suffered to increase his greatness, which she
said 'imported' the Queen more than any other.
To this I answered that in respect of the principal cause which
had persuaded her to condescend to marriage, her Majesty desired
expedition, not only in respect of satisfying her husband with the
hope of issue, which by protracting the time would 'quail,' but also
to satisfy the expectation of her subjects, who coveted it with
extreme desire only to see and obey her husband, who would be a
second person, being so well contented with her quiet government.
She said the King had that morning sent Secretary Villeroy to
require Monsieur to 'bring the peace to an end,' as also to learn
from him the difficulties, in order that the King might make the
doubts become more clear and easy to be accorded. And that they
of the Religion had slain Captain de la Salle, who had been dispatched
by her son to the King of Navarre.
I besought her to 'be informed' of these accidents without
partiality, for it might rather prove to be those who would be
accounted Catholics that committed the murder, since the place
where it was done was not commanded by those of the Religion.
She affirmed assuredly, as before, and would have named a
captain belonging to the King of Navarre, but she had forgotten his
I also pointed out that by all means I understood that the King
of Navarre had shown great unwillingness to take arms, but was
compelled thereto by show of imminent peril to himself and those of
Seeing she had a mind thus earnestly bent towards peace, it
might do great good if she would send to the Queen of Navarre,
since she is one that has much power over her husband, known to
be a great lady in those parts and respected in those governments.
The Queen said she doubted not that she did her part in
procuring the peace. It seemed to me that she answered that
'motion' somewhat heavily and with a few staggering words.
I then gave her to understand that the King had honoured my
Queen greatly in naming the Prince of Condé's brother to be one of
the commissioners ; but as the affairs that were to be treated on
were such as required that all the commissioners should be of ripe
years and expert judgement, it seemed to the Queen that his age
was too tender to work on those causes. Wherefore she requested
that some other convenient personage might in the mean time be
thought of, to be named when the affair is reduced to such terms
that it shall seem good to have commissioners sent.
She said there was Marshal Cossé, a person of sufficient
experience, and M. Pibrac ; and I said those were thought to be
She could not tell, she said, how to find a prince of the Blood
otherwise proper for that purpose ; for the Duke of Montpensier
was aged and feeble, and the Prince Dauphin was loath to go so
far from his father. She lastly mentioned that Simier was
appointed to the commission.
I said the King had not, so far as I remembered, named him at
first, but I since heard his pleasure was to have him one ; and now
I understand there is a 'bruit delivered' of him.
She said he was parted from her son and was no more with him.
Howbeit Monsieur had written nothing of it to her, but that on
Villeroy's return she would be advertised of the peace and all other
things from thence ; and that the King purposed next week to go, on
the way to the 'Baynes' of Bourbon-Lancy, to 'Fontaine-bell'-eau'
with the young Queen, and thence to Orleans, and so to Blois, to hear
oftener from his brother, and to be in a more commodious place and
nearer for negotiating the pacification. At his return next Friday
the 26th she would let him know what I had conferred with her,
and wished I should resort to him. So I assured her 'to' follow
her advice and obey her commands ; parting thus in humble sort
Now I have been informed in this sort of the 'course' of M.
Simier's disgrace and loss of Monsieur's favour. First, since his
being last in Paris, Monsieur has shown somewhat less liking to him ;
which grew from the mislike of the 'good countenances, and certain
conferences which he passed with their Majesties' and other most
assured principal persons of this Court, when the quarrel first
began between Baligny and him ; at which time Queen Mother
specially 'tendered' Simier, commanding 'il Signor Strossi' to
accompany him, and by all means special order was given for his
safety. This being signified to Monsieur, diminished his entire
favour towards Simier ; and further impression had been made on
him of this jealousy through the intelligence sent from the Court
and other parties on this side.
Further, before this last taking of arms, the King and Queen of
Navarre wrote earnestly to Monsieur to send Simier with intreaty
to repair to them, that they might deliberate with him by word of
mouth of affairs which they would not speak to any but him for the
service of the Duke his master.
He excused to Monsieur, and to the King and Queen of Navarre,
his staying from taking that journey upon him, pointing out that
the King would too much mislike his voyage that way the rather
because he was so lately returned from England, which might
breed too much diffidence towards him ; declared that he would
become less able to serve Monsieur after the King had so deeply
conceived evil of him. Whereon the King and Queen of Navarre
sent for Fervaques, by whose messages all those affairs have partly
Upon this refusal of Simier made to the Queen of Navarre, and
his strangeness, being given and recommended by her to Monsieur,
she has taken indignation against him ; and 'it is doubted that a
great part of this storm proceeds against him from that coast.'
And by experience, they say, it is found how her credit displaced
Count de Saint-Aignan, la Bordesiére, M. d'Arpenty and M. de Soury.
Further, it is conceived that he has been a hindrance to the better
intelligence which would otherwise have passed between Monsieur
and the King of Navarre, and has as they say charged those of the
Religion with taking arms without the knowledge of his Highness
to their prejudice, nothing 'favouring' their cause to Monsieur.
So that as I am given to understand Monsieur conceived such displeasure
against him that he desired to have him further from his
presence ; whereon Baligny, being in the palace on the 9th inst.
talking with . . . broker [?] received a letter in which his
Highness wrote that upon sight of it he should repair to him, which
he did a few days after.
At his coming, Monsieur welcomed him in his cabinet with good
acceptance and some conference, which was marked ; and next day
Baligny sent M. de Meure [qy. la Meure] to Simier, to tell him that
Baligny was waiting for him in an appointed place with rapier and
dagger to talk with him about some 'causes,' and if he would take
a friend, he [Meure] would second Baligny.
On this Simier sent for Fervaques, who promised to come at
once, but being in his Highness' cabinet when the message was
'done' to him, either by his means or otherwise the matter was discovered
to Monsieur and consequently the quarrel was for that time
stayed. And since 'by some shows' it appeared to Simier that this
was a 'platform' to affront him, he found means to get at night
out of his lodgings within the Court, accompanied by some of his
most assured friends, and so departed to the Abbey of Bourgueil
and thence to Angiers. But Monsieur sent for him from thence
and desired him to do no further in that government, with command
that since he had departed without seeing him or taking leave of
him, he 'licensed' him, and wished him not to repair thereafter to
The Queen Mother let me know that Baligny was at Court this
morning, and she asked him how it chanced that he had renewed
quarrel with Simier. He said that at his going to Monsieur he had
not thought of challenging him, but afterwards upon advertisement
from his friends, he found he had occasion to talk with him.
The same day a gentleman came and spoke openly to Baligny
in the Court, saying that Simier was an honourable gentleman, and
he would find him so, and assuredly he would fight him.
I hear that Baligny will within two days take his journey to his
Highness, who it is thought is at present with the Duke of Montpensier.
Baligny's wife came to the Court last week, and among other
conference declared to the King how this quarrel between her
husband and Simier had lately passed. The King, in the sight of
everybody, 'shewed to have' no great contentment in her speeches,
and gave her no great pleasant countenance nor gracious answer,
but after her parting said to some about him how little pleasure he
had received in the rehearsal of her husband's quarrels, and that
it seemed to him a very indecent and unwomanly part for a wife to
be a meddler and reporter of 'those kind of' causes. It is mistrusted
that some have discovered how Simier is assured to their
Majesties more than his Duke would have it.
The cause being so far beyond most people's opinion and expectation
that sundry conjectures and suspicions are arisen thereon, and
it is held that the King has expressly sent Villeroy to salve this
displeasure towards Simier, as also to complain that Saint-Luc has
been received by his Highness and entertained in his Court in some
The King of Navarre having been advertised that M. de Ruffec
and M. de Bourdeille are making head in Xaintonge against Count
Rochefoucault has advised him not to venture any battle as yet.
The Viscount of Camillac has lately 'reysed' some castles about
Aurillac in Auvergne, in the hope that Marshal Montmorency will
The King has discovered that Monsieur has very small means to
annoy him, although he has written to some of his friends that if
it might not be otherwise he would employ his own person to make
the peace, as also that there are divers which 'linger of' and show
themselves most unwilling to become of any party, such is the
misery of this state. And surely unless it please God to stir the
Queen to the consideration of the dangers which threaten those of
the Religion, without doubt there will be little appearance of
persons and people who will stick to God and His glory, but [sic]
thoroughly apply themselves to the world, seeing princes so entirely
bent by all means to force the minds of men to forget God and
follow their opinions.
It seems that they are willing to disorder this whole state, whereby
they may the easier reduce it to their designed order.
Meantime they are content to see Portugal and Flanders lost for
any honourable or royal care they perform, more than a shew of
aid. The King of Spain advances his affairs in Portugal, where
their own 'opinion of ability' and their disunion and lack of resolution
will be a great part of their ruin ; whereby the King of Spain's
small forces, together with his great corruptions, will prevail. Yet
those here have sent away Don Francisco Baretto, who was sent
hither from the Governors, and embarked him in two ships with 300
soldiers. They left Nantes about the 16th ; but it is thought this
help will be too late and too little.
How far these affairs, passing in this sort, import her Majesty,
'it is thought they are sufficiently considered on.'
Strozzi has shown himself forward in promoting these preparations,
and has written to a friend of his to wish me to solicit the
affairs of Portugal to her Majesty. Please inform her of the particulars
herein.—Paris, 24 Aug. 1580.
P.S.—I inclose the ordinary advertisements from sundry parts,
received from Italy.
6 pp. [France IV. 137.]
406. STAFFORD to BURGHLEY.
I thank you for your honourable dealing on my account. I can
offer nothing more assured than my service to you and yours while
I live. I hope, though the matter go not forward as, if it be for
her Majesty's good, I pray it may, my faithful travail is never a
whit less to be accounted of in deed, though perchance not to her
Majesty's judgement and opinion.
The ambassador was at the Court on Monday. I saw him
yesterday, and he told me that he never in all his life found
the Queen in words more fervent nor constant. But he says
she does not deceive him, for he trusts nothing that she says till
he see it done ; but he says he is content to be deceived 'with
company,' and that it is you, my Lord Chamberlain, and myself
that deceive him, and he is content to be deceived by us, because
he desires a good success to the matter and therefore hopes for
it. He is advertised, he says, that la Fère is upon the point to
yield for want of money, a thing which I promise you I have
always 'doubted.' He 'assures' that if they yield they will find
the King, for the Queen's intercession, very favourable to them.
I hear the Prince of Condé is very ill content, not with the
Queen, but for many promises from home, which he saw when he
was here they were not able to perform. I wish I 'were lept'
thither for a day, and hither again for another. 'I do so much
presume of his love to me that he would utter his stomach to me,'
which if he did, her Majesty should for my duty's sake not be
ignorant of it ; though perchance her ill-hap would cause her to
make as little account of it as of other true things I have told her.
—Highgate, 24 Aug.
P.S.—Lord 'Shephylde' is in the country with Lord Arundel.
Neither my wife nor I can hear or spy anything like a slipping back
in him, and for his wife she is when she is here very 'reformable'
and comes dutifully and devoutly to service, and is besides of such
behaviour that we have great hope of her. My wife desires her
humble duty to you and my lady.
Add. Endd. by Burghley. 1 p. [Ibid. IV. 138.]
407. (1) Ban and proscription made by the King's Majesty in
respect of William of Nassau, Prince of Orange, as chief disturber
of the estate of Christendom, and specially of these Low
Countries, whereby all men are authorised to fall on him and put
him out of the world as a public pest ; with a reward to whoso shall
do it or aid in it.—Published in the town of Mons, 25 Aug. 1580.
Printed by his Majesty's express command, 1580. Douay : Jan
Bogaert, sworn printer.
MS. copy of the proscription of the Prince of Orange. 'Done in
our town of Maestricht, 15 March 1580. By order of his Majesty
(2) Copy of the Prince of Parma's letter to the Governors, etc. of the
provinces, directing the publication of the above.—Mons, 15 June 1580
(Signed) Alexander, (counter-signed) Verreyken.
Endd. in L. Tomson's hand : Proscription against the Prince of
Orange, 1580. Walsingham's mark. Fr. ½ p. and 11½ pp. [Holl.
and Fl. XIII. 48.]
408. COBHAM to [WALSINGHAM].
I have in my other letter told you of what has lately passed, and
only mention these further details in order that her Majesty may
be persuaded to give such further occasion to the Portuguese that
by her gracious dealing they may think themselves entirely bound,
and thereby conceive the better of Religion ; for more followed
Christ for the miracle he showed of the loaves, which filled their
eyes and belly, than for all the hopes and joys through the preaching
and assurance of everlasting life. Therefore the worldly
comfort often entices weak spirits to make account of gifts, and to
hearken after their voices who give them succour and benefit. And
surely here is small hope for them of Flanders, little comfortable
amity to be hoped for the English, and less good toward themselves,
but by afflictions to bring them to heaven, or end many of their
It is sure that the King will be strong in the field, though not
able to continue ; and they of themselves soon wax weary of any
enterprise ; so the less extremities are 'doubted.'
Captain Anselm having lain in ambush in hope to surprise the
castle of Dorn, and given an overthrow to la Valette the elder in
the Marquisate of Saluces, and for some other new troubles, the
ambassador of Savoy lamented to the King that his duke was sorry
those disorders could be no better appeased, having done his best
to frame all things to the King's will.
The King said he thanked the duke, but he liked to give order
himself in his own dominions ; however, this trouble and all the
rest should shortly be remedied ; which the ambassador noted and
it was marked by others.
'Mal Donato' was repairing to Monsieur to procure a passport
for a Spanish ambassador who was to be sent here ; but was persuaded
The said 'Donato' and Capello the banker in Paris are managing
a practice in Antwerp against the Prince of Orange by means of
Flemings who resort hither.
The King of Spain has sent ships, among whom I hear there is
gone one Clark, an Englishman, to take the Portugal fleet coming
from the Indies.
Some of the Religion hope that Viscount Turenne will succeed
to the place of favour about Monsieur. 'It were to good' if it might
so fall out. Some thought Saint-Luc would ; but I hear he is
returned to Bourges [Brouage].
The Lord of Arbrothe is out of town with the Bishop of Glasgow.
I thank you for the comfort you sent in your last letter, and I
pray God I may have the better means to do Him and her Majesty
more agreeable service. I have in most dutiful manner 'taken
acknowledgment of' her gracious speeches in my behalf.—Paris,
26 Aug. 1580.
P.S.—I thought it well to send back M. Simier's letters, for I
could not hear of any certain place where he is. Besides, I suppose
they contain matter touching Monsieur's causes ; so I return them
herewith to her Majesty, seeing mishap has befallen him, as I learn
both from his own friends and otherwise.
1½ pp. [France IV. 139.]
409. WALSINGHAM to BURGHLEY.
Yesterday we received letters from France, from her Majesty's
ambassador, which I had thought to have sent to you ; but doubting
that she might in some respect 'have use' of them, it made me stay
the sending of them. The effectual points were the following.
First, that Queen Mother did not like the stay of the Commissioners,
interpreting it to be but a delay ; and therefore prayed
her Majesty to deal clearly in the action, that in case she have no
liking to deal in the marriage they might proceed to treat for some
further degree of amity, being a thing most necessary for both
Crowns in respect of the greatness that the Crown of Spain is
That the treaty for peace being committed to the duke her son's
hands, there is likelihood that it will take effect ; and that it may be
performed with more expedition the King meant to go presently
towards Blaye, where, being nearer to his brother, the intelligence
between them might pass with the more speed.
That Simier seems to be altogether in disgrace with his master,
upon suspicion that he was 'too inward' with the King and Queen
Mother, and that the Queen of Navarre has been a principal
instrument in setting this matter forward.
That Baligny, the Bishop of Valence's son, and Simier are shortly
to come to the combat, Baligny being, it is thought, encouraged
thereto by the duke, as he had secret conference with him in his
That the King of Spain prevails greatly in Portugal, and that
the succours sent from France are only 400 soldiers and certain
These are the chief points in the ambassador's letters.
Her Majesty seeing by these letters that the King of Spain
prevails in Portugal, and seeing a disposition in the French king in
spite of Queen Mother's speech to prosecute the war against those
of the Religion, has put on a disposition to proceed in her marriage,
and has therefore caused me to qualify the former message sent to
Queen Mother, letting her know that the cause why she wished the
Commissioners to stay until a peace was concluded was because she
was advertised that this was likely to take effect out of hand ; which
if it had come to pass before the coming of the Commissioners would
have wrought great satisfaction in her subjects here. Her meaning
was not that in case no peace should be concluded the Commissioners
should not come at all. What Queen Mother will do upon this
qualification time will show. Her Majesty has written an 'effectual'
letter to the Duke in favour of Simier. She is greatly perplexed
that he should be by practice divided from so faithful a servant.
Last night her Majesty had secret conference with the gentleman
sent from Don Antonio ; but what passed between them, I know
By the inclosed you will see that the speech given out touching
the taking of la Fère is vain, and that the winning of that town will
be a matter of great difficulty. The town of Paris by the increase of
the plague is become almost desolate.—The Court, 30 Aug. 1580.
P.S.—I find now that her Majesty would like your return to Court.
Add. Endd. by Burghley. 3 pp. [France IV. 140.]
410. WALSINGHAM to COBHAM.
Her Majesty understands from your letter sent by my servant
Burnham that in your last audience you signified to Queen Mother
that her Highness thought it fit the Commissioners should not come
till peace were concluded ; and also that though she thought herself
greatly honoured by the choice that had been made of the Prince
of Condé's brother to be sent hither as one of them, being a prince
of the King's own blood ; yet in respect of his youth and the quality
of the matter to be treated of, she desired that some personage of
good calling, accompanied by more years, might be thought of.
Whereunto Queen Mother in some earnest manner answered, to the
first, that she thought your message delivered to her in that behalf
to be but a delay, and therefore desired to understand her Majesty's
mind more plainly in the matter, in order that some straighter kind
of amity might at least be treated of to avoid the inconvenience
which might follow if that cause were suffered to hang longer in
suspense ; and to the second, that she could not find any other
prince of the blood to send, for the Duke of Montpensier was aged
and feeble and the Prince Dauphin his son was loath to leave him,
being in that state ; alleging Marshal de Cossé and Pibrac to be
men of sufficient experience.
Her Majesty would therefore have you signify to her, touching the
stay of the Commissioners, that being informed by their ambassador
resident here that the King himself desired nothing more than peace,
and that Monsieur, to whom by assent of both parties the treaty was
committed, was in good hope of concluding it, she conceived so
great expectation of its conclusion that she most assuredly believed
it would have been done out of hand. Therefore knowing how great
satisfaction it would work in her subjects' hearts to have the peace
concluded before the Commissioners came, she thought it not amiss
to request their stay for a time ; not with any such resolution as
that if peace did not follow they should not come at all. Touching
the Prince of Condé's brother, you should let her understand (as, if
it had not been by me mistaken, would have been written to you in
my last) that she can be content that he should come if he be
accompanied by some well-qualified personage of more years and
good understanding. Such an one might be old Lansac, Carrouges,
or some such other of the King's Privy Council, of robe courte ;
for the world expects that a matter of such consequence should be
handled by persons of wisdom and gravity.
As for the Marshal and Pibrac, she takes the Marshal to be chosen
for Monsieur, and not for the King, and desires therefore that
another may be chosen for the King, to accompany the Prince's
brother. She prays her to interpret her message in such honourable
sort as princes, knit in that amity they are, ought to do one of
Thus much you are to say to Queen Mother ; and since her
Majesty has written nothing to Monsieur touching the Commissioners'
coming or at least touching the hard interpretation made
of the message delivered by you, you shall by letter acquaint him
with this qualification of the former message, and further let him
understand that immediately after she hears from him, which she
hopes to do shortly, he shall know more of her intention touching
Her Majesty was at first offended with the returning of the
packet ordered to be sent to Simier ; but after I had debated the
matter with her at some length, she rested satisfied. Now she
would have you inclose the greater packet sent you herewith, in a
letter of your own and direct it to Monsieur, and that the gentleman
who carries it should deliver it into his own hands. The
triangle is her letter to yourself ; which her pleasure is, after you
have perused it, you should seal up and return to her by the next.
She would have you advertise her by the same whether the Commissioners
appointed to repair hither made any preparation for the
voyage, as was given out here, and whether they had received any
sums of money by the King's order towards their preparation as
the ambassador reports. There is some doubt of this, as you do
not advertise any thing in that behalf.
Draft. Endd. by L. Tomson : M. to Sir H. Cobham, August 30,
1580. 4¼ pp. [France IV. 141.]
411. COBHAM to the SECRETARIES.
After the King's return from St. Germain's I was admitted to his
presence the 29th of the last month [sic]. I declared to him the
Queen's zealous desire to see France returned to their accustomed
quietness, that she might hear tell that his Majesty joyfully
governed without civil troubles. She wished this the rather,
because the troubles seemed to be an impeachment of other design
more advantageous to him ; as also that the Queen's best subjects
'did much muse' to hear tell how those of the Religion were
besieged and 'encumbered' in other parts of the realm, which raised
many doubts in their minds, conceived because the Queen showed a
liking for the person, birth, and virtue of his Highness more than
she had ever seemed to do to any other prince. Notwithstanding
her whole realm well understood that to satisfy their desire for
succession she was thereon only moved to condescend to marriage,
which was wished for with the enjoyment of the Religion ; but these
wars brought some peril to remembrance. Wherefore the Queen
greatly desired he would command the peace to be made, because
hitherto it has been discoursed on and negotiated ; the wars being
still advanced throughout the realm of France, to the great danger
and extreme threatening of the Protestants.
The King said, for himself he had determined to have the pacification
renewed and established, so that his subjects would do their
parts. He had sent Secretary Villeroy to his brother to clear the
difficulties and understand the stay, since in the meantime he was
losing his best subjects, which he was driven to do for the maintenance
of his honour.
I further informed him that the Queen for the respects aforesaid
and for the happy performance of that alliance which seemed to be
devised as a means to the establishment of a perfect amity between
the Crowns of France and England, now requested that the Commissioners
might not hasten their coming until the negotiations for
peace were advanced, according to the endeavours of Monsieur,
authorised by his Majesty.
The King said the peace might be dealt in while the Commissioners
were also bringing this other good work to pass ; and
although they were ready, having the money assigned for the purpose,
yet as the Queen thought their stay convenient, they should
await her further pleasure.
I further signified her opinion as to the age of the Prince of
Condé's brother, which the King said he would seek to alter ; though
he did not find it easy to send another of his blood, for his elder
brother being to be preferred to benefices it was feared the Pope
would not like the journey, which would be a hindrance to his being
employed 'toward' England. I pointed out how the Queen thought
herself much honoured by the appointment of a prince of the blood,
and so left it to his further pleasure.
He said he thought she would be sorry to hear that Portugal
stood in such evil terms. I said it concerned both their states, and
she had offered to concur with him in these causes 'in all manner
of sorts.' He said it was necessary to consider thereon, and his
mother would deal that way.—Paris, last of August, 1580.
1½ pp. [France IV. 142.]
? End of
412. "Representations to the King and Queen Mother on
the State of Portugal."
Your Majesties ought not to abandon your intention of aiding
the King of Portugal for the news of the capture of Lisbon ; rather
you should use more diligence, that the realm be not lost.
Nor need you give it up from fear lest Portugal be lost already.
For Lisbon is not all the kingdom, nor the key of it ; only a town
very difficult to hold, and in itself of no defensive strength. If the
King of Spain wishes to keep it, his whole army must remain there
inactive. It has no walls or fort where he could leave a garrison to
keep it in subjection, nor is it possible to erect one owing to the
inconvenience of the situation. It will take 20,000 men to guard it,
and he has not more than 15,000 all told.
If the King of Portugal has had some of his people routed as
they say, it is not all the kingdom ; only those whom he could
hastily get together in the city, not having time to do more.
While the King of Spain's army is occupied in guarding Lisbon,
the King of Portugal will be at the other towns which remain to
him, which are many and strong. Here he will collect his forces
from all his provinces, and with the succours which you will send
him, will easily retake Lisbon and drive the Spaniards from his
If the King of Portugal had been slain, there would have been
some reason for not sending the promised succours, as things
would be desperate (déplorécs) ; but as he is in one of his strongest
towns, and has plenty of people who take his part yet upright, and
has all the towns and ports at his devotion, except Lisbon, there is
good appearance of resources, if the succours are hastened, and he
gives the King of Spain no leisure to establish himself ; whose
violent proceeding is in truth formidable to many, and disagreeable
to all. If they can see any appearance of succour, they will take
Guyenne, Normandy and other provinces, even Paris, have ere
now been occupied by the English, and the King of France called
in mockery the King of Bourges. Yet in course of time the French
re-established their true King and drove out the English, who
nevertheless seemed to have a firm footing.
Even if all Portugal had been seized by Spain, and the King
slain, neither of which events is likely to happen for some time,
your Majesties ought, for the benefit of this Crown, and to prevent
the King of Spain from becoming so great, to give M. Strozzi the
means to go at least to the Azores and the Portuguese Indies in
order to take possession of them and defend them against the King
of Spain while he is occupied in this new conquest, as a counterpoise
to so great a power ; otherwise, if leisure is left him to seize
them, he will care little for France, and may do it much harm.
If the King of Portugal, being left without the support that you
have promised him, finds himself unable to maintain his position,
he will in desperation go off to Barbary and hand over his strongholds
there to the Moors, whence they will easily be able to pass
into Spain, to the shame of France and ruin of Christendom.
Another consideration which should induce you more boldly to
support the King of Portugal is that M. Strozzi is the person
employed in the matter. Being a foreigner, and known to be a
courageous and enterprising man, you will be able at your ease to
disavow him if the fear of an enterprise against the King of Spain
chills your ardour ; though his powers are not so great as we make
them out. Or you might let it be undertaken in his own name by
Monseigneur, as an interested party, having been offered by you to
the Estates of Portugal to be their King ; to which the most part,
nay the whole, of the realm was well inclined, but for their affection
and duty towards their native prince, Don Antonio.
And provided you assure M. Strozzi secretly that you approve his
undertaking it, and secretly provide him with the means (for better
concealment fitting him out once for all) he will also be content
that you should thenceforward make such outward show of disapproval
as you please. In this way you will discharge your promise,
will succour a neighbour and friend, binding him and his realm for
ever to you and your posterity, without any need to fear vengeance
on the part of the King of Spain, both because he will ostensibly
have no just cause, and because this course of action will give him
enough to do to attend to his own affairs.
Moreover, if anyone thinks that the King of Spain is not aware
of Don Francisco Baretti's visit to the Court, and of the hopes held
out to him, he is much mistaken. He has too many friends in
France, even at Court, to be ignorant of it ; and notably of the fact
that Strozzi accompanied him to Nantes, had him well entertained
by the way at Chenonceau, by order of the Queen, got him a ship,
supplied him with all the men he could, kept back a good number of
vessels in virtue of the King's commission, and lastly obtained
money from André Ruys, who is a Spaniard and must have told
the King his master. So that it is a double mistake to believe that
if nothing further is done, the King of Spain will abate aught of
any illwill he may have conceived against you ; for he will on the
contrary grow more insolent, when he sees that fear is the only
cause of holding back. And inasmuch as he will recognise that it
has seized us at the report of a single piece of good fortune which
he has had in Portugal, what will it be when he has got everything
and the Indies, and reduced the Low Countries to his obedience,
which will be easy for him if he is let do it ; aye, and to take
In short, your Majesties may take it as certain that he will not
lack pretexts for making war on you as soon as he sees it convenient
The more you temporise with him, the more you further it ; and
you need not respect him so much, since for his part he has not
respected the agreement of '59, when the King of Portugal was
called by the late King Henry a brother in arms and allied
with France, nor had regard to your Majesty's rights and claims
when you had been admitted to assert them. Of which he was not
ignorant ; but as a disturber of the peace of all Christendom he
entered by force of arms into Portugal, to which you have much
more claim (action) than he. Your Majesties ought not to omit to
send succour there, nor fear that it may be unable to enter Portugal,
even though Lisbon be taken ; inasmuch as on this side Lisbon the
King still has several good ports, as Tosquia, Porto, la Perdriguera,
Mandego, Viana, Huero, Camigna, and others, where a landing may
If M. Strozzi thinks it better not to enter the kingdom in arms,
he might keep with his force 50 miles off the coast of Portugal, and
send a small vessel under cover of selling corn, with some experienced
men in her to see the state of affairs ; by whose report his proceeding
should be guided. If he should find from them that it would be
better he should not land, he can go to the Azores where he will be
well received, and strengthen himself there. He will stop the King
of Spain's traffic with the Indies, and secure Brazil, Guinea, Cape
Verde, San Tome, Camigna, and all the Indies, the islands lying on
the route to those places.
I beg your Majesties not to think I am speaking for any harm
the Spaniards have ever done me, nor for any good I have had or
hope to have from the Portuguese ; but solely from my affection to
your service, and the loyalty which I owe you.
To this is appended :
A list of the towns and seaports devoted to Don Antonio as yet
untaken by the Spaniards, together with provinces, territories, and
foreign possessions :—("the Viceroy of India is a great friend of
the King, and an enemy to the Spaniards, has a larger army there
than the Kings of Spain and Portugal together could make, and
many kings in those parts are his friends and allies, and will be
much annoyed if the Spaniards take possession of the Portuguese,
and will resist them with all their power")—with reflexions similar
to those in the memorial. "If the King of Spain has almost lost
the Low Countries, where he has rights, how will he conquer
Copy, probably made in the English Embassy at Paris. Endd.
Fr. 5½ + 5 pp. [Portugal I. 39.]