Elizabeth: December 1583, 11-20

Pages 265-278

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 18, July 1583-July 1584. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1914.

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November 1583, 11–20

Dec. 12. 305. Stafford to Walsingham.
Report that the Queen of Navarre has declared herself of the Religion. The King's fear that she means to brouiller les cartes. Pinart sent to Monsieur, to offer him money to pay the garrison at Cambray and to intreat him to put in an honester man than Balagny. Account of the election of an Abbess by the nuns of Poissy.—Paris, 12 December, 1583.
Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Ibid. X. 102.]
Calendared in Report on the Cecil Papers, iii, 20 (from a copy sent to Burghley), and printed by Murdin, p. 383.
Dec. 14/24. 306. Pietro Bizarri to Walsingham.
We hear from Cologne that the new Elector's men have at last taken Godesberg (Gottesbergh) by mining, a castle held by the old Elector and judged, by its situation, as also by art and good garrison, to be exceedingly strong, indeed almost impregnable.
As it was taken by main force, all were put to the sword, and in the soldiers' fury they even murdered a bishop, a great favourite of the new Elector, who was going to visit him, and on his way to Cologne was taken by Truchsess's men and carried prisoner to Godesberg, although he offered more than a thousand crowns for his freedom, which, however, he had never been able to obtain.
They say that the only prisoner is the captain of the place, whose life they spared because he was a citizen of Cologne. A few others, but very few, are alive.
Six thousand foot and eight companies of horse are said to be coming from Italy, at the request of the Bavarian. In fine, if the Princes of the opposite party do not make provision in time against this great movement, things must go badly for them and for many others, which may it please God shall not be.
There was lately discovered in Brussels a fresh conspiracy, of which the chief authors are said to be the pensionary of the city and his brother, who a little while ago came to Antwerp, and the plot being discovered, great search has been made here for him. As he was seen a little time before in the house of M. de Meroda, one of the principal lords of the States, who now lives in the palace of Messieurs Foccher, and it was suspected that he might be hidden there, the said palace, under a warrant from the Colonels, was surrounded on every side by soldiers and a strict search made, but he not being to be found, a reward of 100 crowns of gold was offered to whoever should discover him, and next day the gates of the city kept closed up to mid-day. In the end he was discovered and taken to prison.
About 30 vessels have come hither from Spain, laden with divers merchandise, which has been no small benefit, in the misery and calamities of these poor countries.
I wish you and your family a happy new year, with a thousand to follow, all prosperous and happy, and pray you to offer the same to the Earl of Bedford on my behalf. Antwerp, 24 December, stilo novo.
Add. Endd. Italian. 2 pp. [Holl. and Fl. XX. 106.]
Dec. 15. 307. Stafford to Walsingham.
I despatch this bearer upon a re-iteration of the news which Lyllye sent me from the court of Mauvissiere going to Scotland. I gave no credit to it, but now it is brought me from divers places, and his own man here gives out that he stays but for despatch. It is said to be by the Queen's request that the King sends him. Whether it be so or no, there is somewhat you know not of, whereof his servant Harvey tarries for the despatch.
Yesterday one who means to be of Richelieu's embarkment was with me. They give out it is for Don Antonio, to fetch some treasure that is hidden. Two evenings ago Don Antonio very courteously came to see my wife and me, and if I had known this then, I would have asked him, but when these holydays [i.e. Christmas, new style] are past I will go and see him, and draw from him what I can.
One who has been prisoner at Gravelines tells me that La Motte divers times, in speaking of England, said that he knew how to burn the Queen's ships at the road, but would not enterprise it until he had answer from the King, to whom he had sent to know his pleasure.
The report of the Queen of Navarre receiving the communion is not confirmed, for the King of Navarre, writing to his agent here, says nothing of it, “and withal that he would not once hear Bellièvre speak of her to him, but said that they would make him do things a coups de baston, which he would not.” The King is much offended with him for taking Mont de Marsan, and told his agent here that he would not suffer him to be King in France; “if he would reign, it was for him to do it in Bearn, where he was sovereign.”
The King is also much offended with Montmorency, and thinks he has intelligence with the King of Spain; also “at the defeat of old Joyeuse's folks that went to besiege Montreal,” which he thinks is done by Montmorency, and upon these suspicions has ordered certain companies into Languedoc.
Greater show of preparation is made, but those who know the King's humour think it is rather to draw money from those who have promised to lend for this purpose, than from any desire for wars, his disposition is so much against it. Another cause alleged by the King is because Monsieur has given out divers commissions, though he says it is for putting victuals into Cambray and the help of the Low Countries.
Upon this bruit, the Spanish ambassador last Thursday “was very earnest and long both with the King and Queen about the stay of it, who, as I am informed, hath promised it, whereat Monsieur in show seemeth to storm a good [sic].”
Pinart, who had come to this town on his way back to Monsieur, has been sent for again to the court, and is not yet gone, whereat he is not very angry, “Monsieur having given him so hard words at his last being there that he hath no mind to return.” But it is thought he will presently be despatched, though not to the same effect as before.
Two “cardinal hats” are coming from Rome; one for the Bishop of Rouen, the Prince of Condé's brother; the other for the Bishop of Narbonne, Duke Joyeuse's brother.
The Pope, they say, has created nineteen cardinals, to get more friends by their alliance. He is much troubled with these troubles of Rome, “which kindle still more and more, and is thought that he will remove to Bologna; some think to remove the 'siege' there, as others afore him did to Avignon.”
I send you my news from Venice, a piece of which at the end touches Scotland, agreeing with advertisements which come hither from divers places, as “a thing either upon doing, or intended to be done.” I also send you Baxter's letter from Venice, of the contents of which I hear nothing here as yet; and a letter in Latin, which came to me from an Italian who has sent me “divers time good matter” (and promises better) out of the Nuncio's, Duke of Guise's and Bishop of Glasgow's houses. I have desired him to seek further into the particularities, and to encourage him, sent him what he desired.
The Duke of Guise is gone to Gaillon with the Cardinal of Bourbon, “who maketh so much of him that he, the old, poor man, is become as fond of him as though he were his child, and calleth him nothing but his master, whereat the Duke of Guise maketh good sport among his private companions.
“The deputy for Paris and he for Normandy made the last day a very bold speech to the King. He for Paris declared that the King had broken promise with them, in that instead of a relaxation he promised, he had increased their taxes 55,000 francs a year more than before, which his subjects were not able to bear, and that he could not warrant what extremity it would bring them to. He of Normandy added further that Kings were as well tied to keep promise to their subjects as their subjects to them, and that one being broken of his part his subjects should be driven (being no more able to bear the burden) either to seek somebody that might succour them, or else to go as men in a ship without a stern, that in a storm let all go in a venture, and either be without care, desperately, what rock they touch on first, or if they find by God's grace any place of succour, they worship it ever after as a God.”
One was to-day secretly carried to the “Bastillion” when everybody was at service, and people murmur that it is the deputy for Normandy; for “the King was in a marvellous choler with him and answered nothing but that he had a soul to save, which he was of age to look to, and in the meantime he would teach his subjects their duty and not to use their tongues in that sort as he did.
“These courses make men take a hard opinion of the King's well-doing, and judge the end will be some open rebellion, and so should I too if I had not seen greater matters compassed, and found the people of France the humblest people to their Kings and the easiest to be trodden on in the world.”—Paris, 15 December,1583.
Add. Endd. 3 pp. [France X. 103.]
Dec. 15. 308. Copy of the above, endd. by Stafford, “Copy of my letter to Mr. Secretary, 15 December, 1583, by John de Vigues.” 4 pp. [Ibid. X. 103a.]
Enclosed in Stafford's letter.
309. Thomas Baxter to Stafford.
Jesus. Venice, 5 December, anno 1583. Your friendly letter of Oct. 15 I received four days past, and your good opinion binds me to do the best poor service I can for you during my abode here.
I enclose the occurrents which you wrote to me for. The “Senoria” some days ago made a law that none shall write any news whatever on pain of a penalty, so that men are very fearful to deal herein, but by a good friend's means I have procured them, and will send them by every Lyons post; if these come safely by this my friend's conveyance, whom Mr. Parry knows, I do not “mind” to send them by the manner Mr. Parry sent me last. I pray you content my friend.
Certain Englishmen who have been here I desired to do my message to you by word of mouth, which I hope they will.
I am told that the difference betwixt this State and us as to the new imposts exacted upon us within this two years, is to be committed to be ended by you and the ambassador of the Signoria of Venice. They have dealt very strangely with us. I presented the Queen's letters to the prince and senate, and it was six or eight months before they would give me the answer. I was suitor here eighteen months, and in the end had no favour at all, but was forced to pay the new impost, for which, last year, they had above 9,000 ducats from us. They promised, by the decree made in their college, that when the Queen revoked her new imposts they would revoke theirs, and repay what we had paid since the publishing of their said impost; whereupon the Queen revoked “Asserboe's” [i.e. Acerbo Vellutelli's] licence for currants and oils, but still they would not revoke theirs.
I crave your favour, if the matter be committed to you, that unless they repay us what we have paid upon the new impost, they may not trade but according to the licence granted of late to the Company by her Majesty. Mr. Parry, my good friend, can inform you how we were dealt with.
If my simple service may stand you in any stead, I pray you to command me.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [France X. 104.]
Dec. 15. 310. Stafford to Walsingham.
I received yesterday by Mr. Constable your packet touching Paget and Arundel, with the Queen's commands, which must needs make me more diligent if possible, “not more careful, being not possible. . . . I had afore your letter taken the same show of careless course you writ me of, thinking it the best, and truly I find it so by experience, for by that means they take less heed of me. I have had one lodged by them, but I am fishing for one that is daily with them and now their servant. . . . They have yet dealt themselves with nobody nor seen any man of importance. What Charles Paget doeth for them I can hardly learn yet, for he is inseparable with Morgan, who is hand in hand with the Bishop of Glasgow. . . . Paget and his fellow both protest that neither they do or will do anything against the Queen, nor hang upon the French King, the Pope, the King of Spain, the Duke of Guise, nor any, as long as necessity for meat doth not drive them to it, and that the Queen will let them live to their conscience here . . . without undoing.”
Paget has received 4,000 crowns at Bartelmy Martin's hands here; the exchange came from Mosley, a merchant in Cheapside, to Rouen, and from thence hither.
I am sure they have not spoken with any stranger of importance, unless by Charles Paget's means to Morgan and so to the Bishop of Glasgow and others, for they have not seen Morgan since they came.
I pray you tell the Queen “that what alliance soever anybody had to my wife, there is neither alliance to her, nor to me, nor kindred to any of us both, not if it were mine own brother, if he do enterprise anything against her, should scape punishment in extremity as long as I have any hands, if there were none other to do it. And therefore much less, I hope, she will doubt in these, who neither have kindred, alliance nor any other matter of value in them to draw me a thought from my duty. . . . I can receive no more wrong in anything than to be in that point never so smally doubted of.
I send this bearer the sooner that you may know of the speeches here of Mauvissière's going into Scotland, for if you think it good there are ways enough, the man who carries the despatch being watched at Dover to see what he carries, before he come to London. His name is Harvey, Mauvissière's ordinary servant.
Thus assuring you that my cousin Constable, for being my cousin, for his own sake, and especially for your recommendation shall have all the favour I can show him &c.—Paris, 15 December, 1583.
Add. Endd. 2 pp.[France X. 105.]
About Dec. 15 ? 311. Stafford to Walsingham.
I am promised means to compass Mandat, “but it will be the dearest pension that ever was given to any private man by an ambassador. But if the market go forward, whatsoever it cost me, I will have him, for all that can chiefly hurt us, especially by Scotland, passeth Pinart's hands, which there is no so sure way to know as that.
Paquier I can find no way to compass, and find him to be the hardest man against Englishmen that may be, and the greatest spier of my men when they come to the court, or of any that he thinketh belongeth to me.”
I am hoping for good intelligence out of the servant of the Pope's house. I would the Queen would write, or cause a word to be written to Calvacanti [sic]. He has great acquaintance with his brother that was in England, as was hinted to me by some that haunt Calvacanti.
I send you another leaf. “Morgan” and “Owen” never stir from the press, to watch that nobody take any away. He that I have it of is one of the company by a third hand. I have it for good gain. I see that will corrupt all religious, how hot so ever they be in it. I have written plainly, after my accustomed manner to the Queen; and also of a strange seeking of Monsieur upon the King of Navarre and Condè, which he hath done the like also to the Duke of Guise, to seek to broil in France.”
No date or address. 1 p.[Ibid. X. 106.]
Dec. 15. 312. Stokes to Walsingham.
Letters from Tournay tell of a great discord happened between the Prince of Parma and M. la Motte of Gravelines about the government of Dunkirk and Nieuport, which towns, with the rest were taken “by the only means” of La Motte, for which cause the Prince promised him the government, but now the Spaniards have it, greatly to La Motte's discontentment, who keeps himself at Gravelines and refuses to come to the camp.
Very harsh speeches have passed at Ecloo between the Marquis of Risbourghe and M. de Mondragon, about some government in the camp, this being the second time they have fallen out within three weeks.
Two days ago the enemy sent many waggons from Ecloo laden with small boats and great piles of wood, as is said to stop up the river between Rupelmonde and Ghent and so keep Ghent as short as they can and drive the commons there to mutiny. Those of Ghent write that M. d'Hembysen governs all things there of himself without the counsel of any, so as it is feared he will mar all. They are wholly resolved not to receive Monsieur again, and have taken down his arms which stood in the Town house and sundry other places. Great discord is feared between town and town, “for some will have Monsieur and some will not, and some would make a peace with the Malcontents and some will not,” but most wish to make peace and keep out the French.
M. d'Hembysen has mustered all the horses in Ghent, which are between six and seven thousand, of which he has taken 2,500 of the most serviceable and put the rest out of the town to save forage. Those he keeps he will mount with lances, all Gentners.
Advice is sent to this town from the enemy's camp to look well to their towns, as there is some enterprise in hand, but where is not known.
The Prince of Orange and the States have given licence that Holland and Zeeland may send victuals to the enemy, which greatly discontents the commons in these parts, who say “why should not we make some agreement with the Malcontents as well as Holland and Zeeland should victual them.”
From Spain we hear that the King is preparing a great armado to send to Dunkirk and Nieuport in March next, which makes both the States and Malcontents afraid.
Those gentlemen of the Free appointed to be sent to Monsieur have refused the journey, and it is said there is none willing to go on this message.
The States side grows every day into more and more danger, for their covetous government is so evil that they cannot continue long, and this news of the coming of the armado “hath strocken their hearts dead,” so as there is no likelihood but that all will be lost.
The Prince of Chimay begins to mend.
Good store of English gold comes over every week “because they go here at high prices.” The Intercourse should not suffer their money to go so high.—Bruges, 15 December, 1583, stilo Anglie.
Postscript.—News is now come' that the English companies from Alost (Halst) are at Maldeghem (Malinghem), two leagues this side Ecloo, and are very well used. “But yet they see the Malcontents dares not trust them.”
Add. Endd.pp. [Holl. and Fl. XX. 107.]
Dec. 16. 313. [Walsingham] to Stafford.
Her Majesty willed me to signify to you that whereas in your late letter you said that for her service sake you could get a lady in that realm “that by pretending another religion than presently she is of” might discover matters of importance; she would have you to forbear to proceed therein, “for that she doubteth that in the end it will prove but a scorn.” This I leave to your own deciphering, having as near as I could remember set down her own words, which I trust will sufficiently show you her meaning and keep me from blame of misconceiving.
“Yesterday the Earl of Northumberland was committed prisoner in his own house under the guard of Sir Thomas Leighton, being charged to have had conference with Charles Paget, sent over into this realm about September last to some ill purpose, which he confesseth,” but denies knowing any cause for his coming than to confer with his brother Lord Paget on his private affairs; which carries no probability, considering what her Majesty has learnt from the strait examination of such as wish well to the Earl. The Earl of Arundel, also charged with the matter, confidently denies it. “Charles Paget is a most dangerous instrument, and I wish for the Earl of Northumberland's sake, he had never been born.”—16 December, 1583.
I have acquainted her Majesty with your last letters, who very well allows your proceedings with Lord Paget and Charles Arundel and thinks you should still forbear to have any dealings with them or suffer them to have access to you, for by examination of those lately apprehended here, Lord Paget is found to have been a great practiser, therefore you are still to carry a watchful eye over them and seek to learn their doings by such good courses as heretofore.
I would willingly write oftener to you as you desire, but her Majesty “is many times so offended with the charges of often posting as I dare not make her privy of all the despatches I receive from you. For me self, being in your place, did not oftentimes hear from hence once in two or three months,” and therefore I advise you not to write but upon occasions of good importance.—16 December, 1583.
Her Majesty desires you to serve your turn” with the Jesuit whom you mention in your letters sent by Paynter, and who repairs to great persons in that realm.
Draft. Endd. To Sir Edw. Stafford. 2 pp. [France X. 107.]
Dec. 16/26. 314. J. Surys to Walsingham.
This is only to beg you to believe that the baits are about ready, and that the man who spoke at the chimney corner is to start for Bordeaux, and his brother as well. A rumour has been spread that one is going thither and the other to Toulouse, but these are fables. Turn your attention, I pray you, to the place where you were travelling, for there the course of affairs (procession) is to be seen. There are new baits, for which they have spread their nets in the place where you stand, wherefore I beseech you in God's name to have your eyes in all directions and in all parts of your body, for after her Majesty, they aim at your person. Do not disdain warnings. You must take heed of them.
As for the news of these parts, a month or so ago, the seneschal of Carcassonne and those of Toulouse had laid siege to Montreal, but those of Castres and other places assembled with M. Dandon, with 2,000 arquebusiers and 600 horse, and have sent to the camp to say that they do not intend to show any favour to those of Montreal provided they will cause Allet to be restored, and do exemplary justice on the Infructeurs of the country, swearing and promising to do the same to those of Montreal. This they did not wish to do, and would not quit the siege, seeing which, the assembly caused the troops to march, and one morning, at the diane, (fn. 1) fell upon the camp, where were left on the field some hundreds of men and some pieces of cannon, and they raised the siege and fled.
The King of Navarre has been in parley with his wife, and it is concluded that she is to arrive in twelve or fifteen days at Court to justify herself; and in the meantime after the reception of Mgr. Ferrier to the post of chancellor to the King of Navarre, with such a confession of faith as is an example to all those who fear God and yet dare not declare themselves before men, they have seized an important town in Gascony called Auch, whereat the King is much vexed.
I pray you to excuse my boldness if I venture to request a gift of you, which is to be my helper that her Majesty may bestow upon me so much charity as that I may lade fifty tons of wine of our parts to make good my losses and especially one that I made when I was with you lately, of 400 crowns, on a certain stay that I had caused to be made, which those in town, knowing I was not on the other side, have got made void.
It is a very small thing to her but much to a poor man like me. I know that there is one to whom her Majesty has granted a farm of the said wines, but if you will represent the matter to her, you will easily be able to obtain this charity for me, and he who holds the farm will not object, if her Majesty and you are willing. This is the first gift I have claimed from you. I am not ungrateful and shall acknowledge it all my life, and mine after me.
I have means of sending the most excellent wines that grow in the district of Gaillac and Rabastens and of Graves, and also Muscat and Frontignac, and some other commodity, which all have not. Sans sonner mot, l'effet en rend l'œuvre certaine.
If anything fresh happens, I am assured I shall be advertised of it. Meanwhile, I intend to start to-day week for Poitou, and to advertise the gentlemen of Rochelle of the doings of certain traitors that I have discovered, who are ordinarily at the assemblies, and return here, please God, at the end of January, to inform the ambassador of anything that may happen.
Assuring myself that by your favour I shall get this “alms” of her Majesty, I shall all my life pray God to grant you prosperity. I have not leisure to thank you for the passport you were good enough to send me, with the 56 angelots, for which I give you infinite thanks and pray the Saviour that I may do you some acceptable service.—Paris, Monday, 26 December, 1583.
Add. Endd. Fr.pp. [France X. 108.]
Dec. 18. 315. Danzay to Walsingham.
It will be a great comfort to me to learn that you have returned from Scotland into England in good health. I find the principal lords here very well disposed to preserve the friendship between the Queen of England and the King of Denmark, which is certainly very useful and necessary to them and to many others, who are protected by this conjunction. Christendom is divided into two principal parties, Catholics and Protestants. The Catholics are all united, of one mind, and agree well together. The Protestants, who boast so much of their religion, yet by their divisions and mortal enmities, against all Christian charity, give very just opportunity to the Catholics to ruin and to destroy them. And although certain turbulent and corrupt theologians are partly the cause of this evil, the Protestant kings and princes are still more to blame, for their great negligence and blindness, being quite indifferent to their duty, and very few of them giving a thought to their differences or understanding the true causes of them. For it is certain that in a free synod, with statesmen to preside over it. they could be ended in two days, according to the word of God. But I fear God will punish severely their contempt for his holy name, and that they will feel his heavy judgment sooner than they imagine.
But I must acknowledge my fault in writing these things to you, who have long known how the affairs of princes are carried on, and the state of all Christendom.
Postscript.—I am informed that they are going to send from France to the Princes of Germany, but I have written and assured them that if the Queen of England does not support them, this negotiation, which is of so great importance, will bring [The last line torn and illegible].—Colledin [qy. Kolding], Dec. 18, 1583.
Add. Endd. From Monsieur Danzay, agent for the French King in Denmark. Fr. 1 p. [Denmark I. 40.]
Dec. 19. 316. Stafford to the Queen.
On the reported plot to murder Monsieur. Some think it was prompted by the King, some by the Queen of Navarre or the King of Spain. Not the fewest believe it a “fetch” of Monsieur's own.—Paris, 19 December, 1583.
Add. Endd. 3 pp. [France X. 109.]
Calendared in Report on the Cecil Papers, iii, 20 (from copy sent to Burghley). Printed by Murdin, pp. 385–387.
Dec. 19. 317. Stafford to Burghley.
I send you the copy of my letter to the Queen, whereby you may see the stirs that are now here. For my part, I rather believe one of the two last opinions than anything else, “but I will not judge, for fear of being judged myself. And for the matter, exitus acta probant [sic]. It cannot be but ere it be long, we shall see which way the hare goeth.”—Paris, 19 December, 1583.
Add. Endd. with date by Burghley. ½ p. [Ibid. X. 110.]
Dec. 19. 318. Stafford to Walsingham.
You will excuse me though I be not long in writing to you, being in haste to send her Majesty this new “horlyborly” of a reported plot against Monsieur.
Maningville, who I told you was thought to be gone to Scotland because he was missed here for a time, is now at the Court again. The Queen Mother is gone to Monsieur upon these broils, and Pinart, who should have gone before, is stayed and gone with her.—Paris, 19 December, 1583.
Postscript.—I send you another letter from one who knows somewhat, though but generalities. I hope to have some particular matter worth the sending from the same man.
Add. Endd. ¾ p. [France X. 111.]
Dec. 19/29. 319. St. Aldegonde to Walsingham.
I have been very glad to talk with Mr. Burnham, the gentleman sent from you to his Excellency, and have discussed the points which he has proposed both by word of mouth and by writing. I am grieved that our affairs are in such a condition that we are not free to do what we should like best, but that necessity imposes an iron law upon us. Whenever you are pleased to give me privately your opinion, I have so great an esteem for your judgment that I shall joyfully take it as a rule for my actions and deliberations.
I pray you, look upon me as your friend and servant, who would feel himself happy to do anything that might please you. The state of our affairs is so well known to Mr. Burnham that I should wrong him if I added anything further. Signed Ph. de Marnix.—Antwerp, 29 December, 1583.
Add. Endd. Fr. 1 p. [Holl. and Fl. XX. 108.]
Dec. 19. 320. Paul Buys to Walsingham.
Expressing his pleasure for the good opinion which her Majesty and his honour are kind enough to conceive of him, and wishing that he could merit it by being of service to them. The Hague, 19 December, stilo antiquo.
Add. Endd. Fr. ½ p. [Ibid. XX. 109.]
Dec. 19. 321. Capt. Tommaso Sassetti to Walsingham.
I have learnt who the gentlemen are about whom you enquired.
One is Count Cesare de Poppoli of Boulogne, and the other Signor Ridolfo Baglioni Perugino, son of a Signor Ridolfo who was killed in the war of Siena, in that business (fazione) about the negotiation they held at Chiusi, when Signor Ascanio della Cornea was left a prisoner.
This Signor Ridolfo is in the service of the Grand Duke of Tuscany, and Signor Poppoli has command of a company of
Venetian horse, and it would seem that they went into Flanders rather to see that country and its method of warfare than to stay. I understand they had no charge to the Prince of Parma, and they have taken leave in order to return into Italy.
By what I gather they wished to see England, but of all that one Lorenzo Fondino Corriro, who, as I understand, is always with them, will tell you better than I can. I am not yet able to go about, but if possible shall leave my room on Sunday.
I sent you by Signor Landi a letter written to me by Captain Battista Servigi, who was serjeant-major at the Terceiras; he is a worthy man, not one to say what is not true [see p. 242 above.]
I beseech you by your authority and prudent judgment to take steps as to some affronts given by M. Giovanni de Ribiera and his household to M. Alexandro Tibante, my friend and compatriot, that is of the Grand Duke's State, who has been calumniated and insulted by persons commissioned to beat and kill him, and has borne it patiently, not to make a scandal; but, he being daily provoked, I fear greater scandal may ensue, and being a merchant and man of worth and of means, he desires to be allowed to live without injuries or danger.
Your authority will be able to put all right; I shall receive it as a great favour and Signor Tibante will be under infinite obligations to you. From my house, 19 December, 1583.
Add. Endd. (with date 18 Dec.). Italian. 1 p. [Tuscany I. 5.]
Dec. 20. 322. Julius, Duke of Brunswick, to the King [of Navarre].
We have received your Majesty's letter, transmitted by your ambassador, James Segur Pardelian, whom we have authorized to confer with our privy council, we ourself being prevented by ill-health and other hindrances from giving him audience. I have learned with great pleasure from your Majesty's instructions to the Electors, Princes of the Empire and Estates, how earnestly you have the cause of our reformed religion at heart, and render thanks to God, deeming that your Majesty's efforts are the sole human means by which the Reformed Churches may avert the ruin with which they are menaced by the Pope. And so, although ourself almost the last of the Electors and Princes to join the reformed religion, we vehemently desire to promote the work, and have long been labouring to gather together a general synod; the result of which seven years' endeavour is that a special or national synod, representing the allied Electors, Princes and States of the Reformed Religion is to assemble at Magdeburg on the Elbe, at which it is to be hoped that arrangements will be made for the convening of a universal assembly of all who profess the true religion; and in which the few articles which remain in controversy amongst the Reformed Churches may be determined on the solid foundation of God's word, and thereby an end be put to our most pernicious and scandalous dissensions. Well, indeed, we know the obstacles by which to this day—despite letters written to absent people, petitions laid before those that were present, conferences held, and other methods, all of which proved vain—we have been prevented from accomplishing aught in this matter, and great is our grief that they are not only themselves averse to a just, Christianlike and godly peace, but also rejoice to have been able to divert others, and those extremely pious and meritorious princes, zealous for religious peace, from so laudable an object.
To this end, according to your pious exhortation, we are firmly resolved not only to persevere in the faith we have hitherto professed, but also, so far as we may, to contribute to the success of your pious, useful and most necessary enterprise. But since all does not rest with us, we have no intention of doing aught in advance of the other Electors, Princes and Estates of the Empire, united with us in religion, or of arrogating their functions to ourself. Moreover, there is nothing or next to nothing that we have been able to do for the advancement of this matter, save to give your ambassador letters of recommendation to certain (and these the chief) Electors and Princes who have embraced our religion. This we did at his own request, as will appear by the copies. We have also promised manfully to promote this cause in all matters proposed by your Majesty wherever occasion serves, by all methods and ways that we can in any wise devise and find to be suitable. This we are ready to perform, and we earnestly beg you in no respect to question it. We have also authorized your Majesty's ambassador to answer for us in your presence, and it is agreed between us that when he has performed his commission from you, he shall return to us, to explain the result and to await our fuller and perfect answer.
And though we are by no means doubtful, yet most lovingly we beg you steadily to press forward this pious and laudable project, and to labour to put it in operation, and not to suffer yourself to be diverted therefrom. And likewise you may rely upon us that there is nothing we shall have more at heart in the future than that this business may have a happy issue, and that in time to come, we may be more closely united in our counsels and friendship. And if we should learn that we have (of the produce of our dominions) metals, arms, horses or aught else, that may be of use to you, and thereby serve to establish our friendly and confidential intercourse, we shall gladly bestow them upon you in abundance, expecting, on your part, the like gift of things peculiar to your land.—” Henricopoli” [i.e. Wolfenbüttel], 20 December, 1583.
Headed “Reply of Julius, Duke of Brunswick.” Copy. Latin. 4 pp. [Germany, States, II. 81.]
[This is the first of a series of answers given by the Protestant Princes to the King of Navarre's agent. It is here calendared at considerable length as being representative of (and somewhat more interesting than most of) the rest; which will be found gathered together, apparently as they were sent to England, in a collection of papers noted as “Segur's negotiations,” under date May, 1584, below.]
[Dec ] 323. Segur-pardeilhan to Walsingham.
I wrote to you at my departure from Bremen [see p. 263 above], but, fearing you may not have received my letter, I send this to tell you that having made safe what I carried with me, I have come hither, and have been honourably received by the Duke of Brunswick, who much commends the object of my journey and testifies his desire to promote God's glory. He has given me a very satisfactory reply, and is writing to all the Princes whom I have named to him, asking them to countenance the business; from which good beginning I hope for a good ending. I find him supported by very honest and well-affected men.
I am now about to go to see the Landgrave [of Hesse] and will not fail to inform you of the progress of my negotiation.—Wolfenbüttel. Undated.
Add. Endd.“March, 1584,” but must have been written between 20 and 30 December, 1583. Fr. ½ p. [ Germany, States, II. 82.]


  • 1. Beating of the drum at break of day.