Elizabeth: December 1559, 1-5

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 2, 1559-1560. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1865.

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'Elizabeth: December 1559, 1-5', in Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 2, 1559-1560, ed. Joseph Stevenson( London, 1865), British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol2/pp154-164 [accessed 21 July 2024].

'Elizabeth: December 1559, 1-5', in Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 2, 1559-1560. Edited by Joseph Stevenson( London, 1865), British History Online, accessed July 21, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol2/pp154-164.

"Elizabeth: December 1559, 1-5". Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 2, 1559-1560. Ed. Joseph Stevenson(London, 1865), , British History Online. Web. 21 July 2024. https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol2/pp154-164.

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December 1559, 1-5

Dec. 1.
R. O.
354. Challoner to Cecil.
1. Late yesternight his servant Farneham arrived here with the Queen's packet to him, and Cecil's leter written at length, for the matter Challoner knows that Cecil committed it to none other to write, and sorry he is that Cecil has such cause to extend so long a letter of his own hand; nevertheless hopes in God all shall be forseen in time. Touching the Queen's former letter to him sent by the Bishop of Aquila's servant, the sickness of the Countess de Feria has hitherto been his stay for the one part; nevertheless on Sunday or Monday next he shall have very good opportunity to execute the Queen's pleasure, and further to feel the Bishop's disposition, having hitherto found him a frank man. For the other part he has fished for the knowledge, etc., but it will not handsomely be come by; wherefore upon these second letters, some time to-day or to-morrow he will board M. D'Arras for the whole, and thereupon return his [Challoner's] servant back with letters by post.
2. Advises him to send none to King Philip but those perfect in the language and who can as perfectly understand the King; "whose quick and soft speech is hard of a young beginner in Spanish to be well at the first comprehended." None worthier than Sir Henry Sydney, but knows not how his language serves him; "axe Sir William Pikering." Mr. Henry Knolles has as sufficient Italian as any English gentleman, but as yet Cecil has not given him reputation. King Philip in so great a matter will look for a great person. Though every man will make excuse, the Queen cannot so be served, for God knows what just cause some now drawing on the plough have to seek to be unyoked; but "vincit amor patriæ, mihi jussa capessere fas est." It is a question to be moved which way the Queen will send, whether by land or sea. Thinks by sea surer and shorter, unless he trusts the French will yet hold out. If by any good means the wars could be "protealed" for two or three years, that quiet at home may let our stone gather moss, nothing were more to our benefit. "Marriage and the fruit thereof as a sure pawn to bind all men's hearts; time gained to put our things in order and settle things begun but not achieved; with a thousand other accidents that the time itself would discover for occasion to take hold upon, do draw one down to that side."
3. On the other side the Scots are to be holpen out of hand before they clear give over. He cannot tell; but their retire to Stirling is the next door to a flight, and wots not whether "vir fugiens denuo pugnabit," unless their policy be better than hitherto they have showed. "Et prius dubii, victoris fortunam sequuntur." "If very necessity seem to offer the breach, for God's love retain the amity of these men. King Philip is now upon the height of all his expectation, yea, more than ever was his father, considering he hath not to do with a Francis or an Henry, but with a young King, now well nigh as loath to offend him as a pupil is his tutor."
Dec. 1. 4. Here is great expectation what we will do at home; one ways great congratulation, and another ways indignation. Assures him all the matter rests upon the resolution; and that also shortly looked for.
5. Wots not what the Bishop of Aquila means, for of late a servant in manner of his steward told one who told Challoner that he had order from his master to provide a house for him here or at Louvain if he depart out of England without substitution of a successor. "Nota bene, what shall I do here?" Consumes the Queen's money, yea, and himself to the bones, but yet always judged that some here or in Spain must keep the turn. In Spain it is too hot; and here he would with humblest thanks give over the helm to a meter man.
6. By this time the Queen Catholic is almost at the mounts Pyrenees; the Cardinal of Burgos, the Duke of Infantasgo, the Count de Benavente, and another great man (whose name he forgets) receive her at the frontiers. The King himself from Toledo by post will meet her at Gwadalagiar, a fair palace of the Duke of Infantasgo, there to consummate the marriage, and thence with her to Toledo, with great triumph during all these Christmas holidays even to Shrovetide.
7. By the Romish advices, which are enclosed, he shall perceive the state of the conclave. The last advice of the 8th of November a special secret friend delivered him; thereby may be guessed what estimation King Philip has among them. Here of late 400,000 florins have been paid to the garrisons. The States have not as yet agreed to the redemption of the King's debts, and make a sticking at it, being afraid of such a shrewd precedent.—Brussels, 1 Dec. 1559. Signed.
8. P. S.—Most at present finds want of wary and expert captains. "Reckon how many be left of the old store. And how many of these that remain can so well skill to conduct an army as they can skill of a skirmish? That want specially here they note. As for our soldiers, count they good for a week's work; but the next, instead of a sallade, to wrap their heads in a kercher. Lord! what I have heard spoken by such our truands!"
Orig., with armorial seal. Hol. Add. Pp. 6.
Dec. 1.
R. O.
355. Draft of the above.
Challoner's hol. Endd.: M. to Mr. Secretary, 1 Dec. 1559. Sent by R. Farnham to Antwerp, and from thence by the ordinary. Pp. 7.
Dec. 1.
B. M. Add. 5754. 58.
356. Money for the Lords of the Congregation.
1. Receipt by James Earl of Arran and Lord James of Saint Andrews, by the hands of Alex. Whitlaw, of 6,000l. sterling from Sadler and Croftes, in name of the Council and Lords of the Congregation of Scotland.—S. Andrews, 1 Dec. 1559. Signed: James Hamilton, James Stuart.
2. Memorandum, that the same was received at several times from Sadler and Croftes by Balnaves and Alex. Whitlawe, towards the charges and defence of the common cause of Scotland.
Copy. P. 1.
Dec. 1.
B. M. Add. 5754. 60.
357. Original of the preceding Receipt, wanting the signatures and memorandum as given in the last article.
P. 1.
Dec. 1.
MS. Burton-Constable. Sadler, 1. 622. No. CLXIII.
358. Sadler and Croftes to the Privy Council.
According to the wish of the Council, the writers send enclosed a book containing a full account of all powder, shot, and ammunition now contained in the town of Berwick, and such wants as they think meet to be supplied, as well for the town as for 4,000 or 5,000 men to the field when required.—1 Dec. 1559.
[Dec. 1.]
R. O.
359. The Army for the North.
1. "Names of noblemen and others appointed officers in the north, if the army shall be levied."
2. The following are to be appointed; the Earls of Northumberland, Derby, and Cumberland; Lords Talbot and Chandos; Sir Ralph Sadler, Sir Arthur Darcy, Sir Henry Percy, and Sir James Croftes, and Mr. Gower.
Pp. 2.
Dec. 1.
R. O.
360. Surrender of Calais.
Trial and acquittal of Edward Grimston, late Controller of Calais, accused of the treasonable surrender of Calais and the Marches to the Duke of Guise and the French, 7 Jan. 4 and 5 Philip and Mary. Being brought to the bar by the Lieutenant of the Tower, pleaded Not guilty, and put himself upon the country. Verdict, Not guilty.
Orig. A file of 12 membranes.
[Dec. 1.]
R. O.
361. Bullinger to Francis II.
Advice as to the rule and management of his kingdom, court, family, and person, supported by examples chiefly derived from the Old Testament histories.
Endd. by Cecil: 1559, Bullingerus ad regem Franciscum Galliæ regem. Lat. Pp. 8.
Dec. 2.
R. O.
362. Guido Giannetti to Cecil.
The Earl of Bedford had written to mention Cecil's goodwill towards him, to whom he was on the eve of expressing his thanks when he was informed that it was intended that he should be deprived of his canonry in the cathedral of Salisbury, the revenues of which he had enjoyed for twenty years. The distance of Venice from England and his own poverty prevent him from entering into a lawsuit, especially as the proceeds are so trifling. The benefice was given him by Henry VIII. in 1532, unsolicited, as a reward for services rendered to the King. If the Queen is determined to give it to an Englishman, he will resign in his favour rather than be ejected, provided a pension is assigned to him. Has laboured for thirty-two years in the service of England, and would be happy to continue to serve the Queen. Knowing Cecil's innumerable occupations he does not write to him at the same length as he has done to the Earl of Bedford. Asks the assistance of both.—Venice, 2 Dec. 1559. Signed.
Orig. Hol. (?) With armorial seal. Add. Endd. Lat. Pp. 2.
Dec. 2.
R. O.
363. Guido Giannetti to Francis, Earl of Bedford.
1. Has, contrary to his expectation, been informed that the revenues of his prebend of Highworth in Salisbury, are to be taken from him, on the ground that he is an absentee, a layman, and a merchant. Hopes, on the receipt of this letter, by the Queen's goodness, and that of Cecil, that these may be restored, and requests his Lordship will have the patience to peruse this, and assist him as much as lies in his power.
2. M. Bartolomeo Compagni can show, if required, that the privileges of a denizen were conferred upon the writer in 1532; wherein it is expressly stated that although absent he is to enjoy the benefice, without any mention of residence. Besides the prebend had been given to him not as a layman, but as a clerk, he having received the first tonsure according as was then the practice in England. It is true that he has never taken orders, neither to sing Mass, Gospel, or Epistle, which at present ought rather to find him favour with the other prebendaries of Salisbury, and not to injure him, and rob him of what is his so long, as the Queen wills him to have it. It has never been intimated to him, or came in any way to his notice, that he was obliged to take ministerial orders in the Church, according to the new Acts of Parliament. He has never had the ability or the means to exercise commerce, and no one can with truth say that he has ever in the whole course of his life acted as a merchant for a single day. Will it be permitted that by such calumnies and lies he shall be deprived of the benefice, the fruits of which he has uninterruptedly enjoyed for twenty-six years, and that while he is said to possess the favour of the Earl of Bedford and of Secretary Cecil? He cannot believe it to be true, since his Lordship had written to him that his services were valued by Her Majesty, and that Cecil held him in good estimation. Besides the Earl assured him in the same letter that he had nothing to dread as to this prebend, and indeed, had such not been written, he would have had no fear at present. He beseeches his Lordship and the Secretary that, such being the facts, he may not be subjected to the law, but by the favour of Her Majesty may have preserved him what King Henry, her father, had spontaneously and unsolicited given him for his faithful services. Being a poor man, he has not the means of taking a journey of a thousand miles to England for the purpose of vindicating his claims. At present he can scarcely find daily subsistence in Venice, where this year bread, wine, and all the fruits of the earth are more than usually dear.
Dec. 2. 3. Repeats the offer which he had made in the reign of King Henry of surrendering the prebend of Highworth to an Englishman, if such is deemed fitting for the service of the Church, and accepting such compensation as the Queen may think him deserving of for his services. But if it shall still appear that he as a foreigner, and not qualified for the ministry of the Church of England, ought to resign the prebend, he will do so willingly; although this will be most grievous to him. He has nothing whereon to live except the revenues of this prebend, and after having served the realm of England, he remains deprived of his country and property, is old, in disgrace, and persecuted; yet for all that, he ought to thank God for having found a refuge in England, when elsewhere he had no safety. The prebend scarcely provides him his poor food and clothing; when it was given to him, and for some time after, (when the pound sterling was equal to four large ducats,) he paid no tithes or taxes, was promised that another source of living should be given to him in England, and was honourably entertained in Rome in the residence of the Casali, those Roman gentlemen who, when alive, were distinguished subjects and representatives of the English crown in Rome and in Venice. Since then he has lost all entertainments and worldly good, while food and clothing are twice the price they were. His prebend alone remains. If (what he cannot believe) this is to be taken from him, he requests this small favour at his Lordship's hands, which he shall account a great one, that from the present revenue due sufficient may be retained to pay to M. Bartolemeo Compagni a debt which he contracted of one hundred scudi, advanced by Compagni for his living here. Thanks him for having the patience to read his long letter.—Venice, 2 Dec. 1559. Signed.
Orig. Hol. (?) Add. Endd. Ital. Pp. 3.
Dec. 2.
R. O.
364. Sir Francis Leek to Cecil.
1. The Queen having commanded him to serve her at Berwick with 300 footmen, to be hired within the county of Derby, he doubts not Lord Talbot has already advertised him and the Lords of the Council of the wants of their furniture for that service. His Lordship has taken order for money to be paid to his own hands on the 11th inst., for the buying of these wants; but if the Lords of the Council so please it, he is ready to set forwards with the soldiers unarmed, so that their armour can be brought to Berwick. Requests that he may have a commission, for the ready expedition thereof, for two carts, at price accustomed, from London to Berwick.— "At my poor house, Sutton, 2 Dec." Signed.
2. P. S.—Encloses a particular of the furniture required. As he hears Mr. John Byrren rather desires that any other had the 100 footmen he is appointed to have than himself, the writer is disposed to have them himself, as he has not served with so small a charge as 300 footmen these fifteen years past.
Orig. Hol., with seal. Add. Endd.: 2 Dec. 1559. Pp. 3.
[Dec. 2.]
R. O.
365. Troops for the North.
"Unto the Lord Talbot," the "Demands of Sir Francis Leek, Knt., for the particular furniture of 300 footmen appointed to be levied and furnished within the county of Derby, and delivered unto the same Francis Leek, whereof, archers seventy-five, harquebutiers seventy-five, pikers seventy-five, halbarders seventy-five, summa, 300;" with a note of the "particular furniture" required for each division.
Copy. P. 1.
Dec. 2.
R. O.
366. La Roche to . . . . . . .
Is glad to have the opportunity of writing in order to express his sense of the kindnesses conferred upon him by the writer when the latter was in France. His afflictions were to a certain extent partaken of by his correspondent, who he hopes will pray to God for him. The bearer will give further particulars of the condition of the writer, who professes his desire to serve the person to whom this letter is addressed. Signed, La Roche, au nom de tous.
Orig. Hol. (?) Add.: Monseigneur. Endd. by Cecil: 1559, 2 Dec., La Roche. Fr. Pp. 2.
Dec. 3.
MS. Burton-Constable. Sadler, 1. 622. No. CLXIV.
367. The Queen to Sadler, Croftes, and others.
The fortifications now making in the town of Berwick requiring that certain houses near the water side be taken away, she gives them power to agree with the owners for a reasonable price for the same, which shall be paid by the treasurer, Sir W. Ingleby.—Westminster, 3 Dec. 1559.
Add. to Sadler, Croftes, and Ingleby, Knts., and Rowland Johnson, surveyor of the works at Berwick.
Dec. 4.
R. O. Labanoff, vii. 282.
368. Commission to the Marquis D'Elbeuf.
1. Letters patent of Francis II. and Mary, King and Queen of France, Scotland, England, and Ireland, reciting that the Queen Regent of Scotland, being so ill that she was about to leave Scotland for the more genial climate of France, and the affairs of that country becoming gradually more and more disturbed, they had resolved to send thither René of Lorraine, Marquis D'Elbeuf, their uncle, as their LieutenantGeneral, invested with the following powers, viz.
2. To promote the public peace, to summon the Three Estates of the realm, to preside in the law courts [juridicis conventibus] at his pleasure, to summon the other magistrates and judges, to hear complaints, to examine the public accounts, to settle what taxes shall be remitted, preserved, or increased, and what expenses shall be incurred, and to audit the accounts of receipts and expenses; to appoint magistrates, ordinary and extraordinary, to bestow vacant benefices, excepting abbeys and bishopricks, presentation to which shall remain with themselves; to receive the embassies of kings, princes, etc., whence soever sent, and to answer the same; to cut off all grounds for sedition, to punish all rebels and other criminals, to remit punishments and fines; to grant charters and bills in all the matters named above, and to affix the seal to them, to summon troops and officers out of their garrisons, over whom he shall have chief authority, to enter, with or without troops, and inspect all cities and castles, to cashier the negligent and to appoint others in their places, to fortify and victual the said cities, etc., to muster and inspect the troops and to settle their pay, to punish soldiers for theft or other crimes, and to give orders as occasion shall require, to issue warrants for the payment of the troops, which shall be accepted as valid, and generally to exercise the same power as they themselves would do were they present. The Three Estates, the clergy and the laity of Scotland are commanded to obey those powers and to assist in their execution.—Blois, 2 Nones Dec. 1559, in the first year of their reign of France, and the 2 and 17 of Scotland. (fn. 1)
Lat. Pp. 5.
[Dec. 4.]
B. M. Faust. C. 11. 42 b.
369. Another copy of the above.
Orig. draft, with corrections. Lat. Pp. 6.
[Dec. 4.]
B. M. Calig. B. x. 55.
370. Another copy of the above.—Blois, (blank) Nov.
Lat. Pp. 2.
Dec. [4.]
R. O.
371. Another copy of the above. The date not filled in. Injured by damp.
Lat. Pp. 4.
[Dec. 4.]
B. M. Calig. B. ix. 46.
372. Another copy of the above.
Cotton's transcript. Lat. Pp. 3.
R. O. 373. Another copy of the above.
Dec. 5.
R. O.
374. [Challoner] to the Queen.
Has received from her two packets of the 10th and 24th ult. Has enlarged upon the particularities thereof in a letter sent herewith to Sir W. Cecil. On his knees beseeches her to interpret what he has written touching her royal affairs as being, according to the bare and very truth of matters, as represented unto him by those with whom he has had to treat. Wishes to God a wiser man had heard the tales told the writer, or had been at his back to make lively report thereof unto her. On account of his own disordered things at home he has great need to return for a season to put some order in them, and asks to be allowed to do so for a fortnight, that at the same time he may kiss her hands.—Brussels, 5 Dec. 1559. Signed.
Orig. Hol. Add., with armorial seal. Pp. 3.
Dec. 5.
R. O.
375. Another copy of the above, by Challoner's clerk.
Endd. by Challoner: M. to the Queen, 6 Dec., sent by Ro. Farneham, 1559. Pp. 2.
Dec. 5.
R. O. Forbes, 1. 272.
Killigrew and Jones to the Queen.
376. 1. They despatched letters to her on the 29th ult., and also on the 5th inst., containing the matter of the first with some more additions, and although they have no more matter, yet upon knowledge of the departure of the bearer, the French Ambassador's servant, they send the very copy of their last letter. (fn. 2)
2. The King arrived here the 2nd inst., returned from Châtellerault. Their last report of the French proceedings in Scotland, and their determination to be revenged upon the chief of the Congregation, seems confirmed; with secret discourse of evil meaning towards her when opportunity offers. They have learnt from the Spanish Ambassador that St. Quentin's was not rendered the 15th ult. to M. de Senarpont, nor is any time appointed for the rendition thereof.
3. On the 3rd inst. the Spanish Ambassador was sent for to the Court by the Cardinal of Lorraine and the Duke of Guise, and remained two hours in the former's chamber. Some discourse thereupon that they, having brought to an end their matter in Scotland, will practise to move the King of Spain to aid them in their causes against her, or else not to hinder them in their purpose, whereof there is no certainty; but it seems to them as a sparkle at the bottom of a great fire. The care which the King of Spain's Ambassador seems to have of her affairs and his good entertainment towards the writers show that he is not so meet a minister as they would have if they mean not well.
4. The King of Spain has answered that he will not meddle with the election to the Popedom; but so as they elect a good and meet man he would rest upon their judgments. Whereupon the Cardinals fell to the election of the Bishop of Feltro, (brother to Cardinal Campeggio, who was heretofore in England,) who had twenty-eight voices; since then nothing has been done further.
5. On the 3rd inst. the Duke of Guise was served as Great Master of France, which office the Constable had before; in recompence whereof Montmorenci was made one of the four Marshals of France, instead of Pierre Strozzi.—Blois, 6 Dec. 1559. Signed.
Orig. Portions in cipher, deciphered. Pp. 10.
Dec. 5.
B. M. Sloane, 4135. 54.
377. Another copy of the above.
Forbes' transcript.
Dec. 5.
B. M. Calig. E. v. 79 u.
378. Another copy of the above.
Damaged by fire. Pp. 7.
Dec. 5.
R. O.
379. Draft of the preceding, omitting the extracts from their letter of Nov. 29.
Endd.: "M. to the Queen, 5 Dec. 1559. A letter was also written to Mr. Secretary, wherein mention was made of Wotton's matter. From Killigrew and Jones in mine absence." Pp. 4.
Dec. 5.
R. O.
380. Another copy of the preceding.
Draft. Portions in cipher, deciphered. Pp. 3.
Dec. 5.
R. O.
381. Killigrew and Jones to Cecil.
1. Sent him a packet and certain catalogues of books on the 29th ult. Refer him to their letters to the Queen. They have before advertised him respecting Wotton, the merchant, who is here a suitor for the restitution of his ship and goods taken at the road at Jersey on 3 April, the day after the conclusion of the peace, to whom the Cardinal of Lorraine gave good hope of justice. His cause was debated in the Council and thought reasonable, and he was willed that it should pass the Great Seal for expedition. When he came to have his letters passed at the Chancery a delay was found, and his bill was remitted to be considered, whereby he was driven from post to pillar without any remedy, so that he was forced to make a supplication to the King to be delivered to the Cardinal. Addressing himself to the Court upon the 4th inst., he attended at the Cardinal's chamber door, presented his supplication, and declared that he was "le pouvre Anglois," who was before a suitor for restitution of a ship, taken by one at S. Malo. At the word "Anglois,"—"Donne moy," quoth the Cardinal, and so, snapping the paper out of his hands, as though he had been in a great chafe, he entered into the Council. Wotton's counsellor told him that he was very sorry for him, and that his letters would not pass, and also that he must go seek his remedy at Nantes, and stand to their judgment, for here he could do no good.
2. Have as yet heard nothing from the merchants of Hull or London which were in prison at S. Malo, having been robbed of two ships laden with merchandise.—Blois, 5 Dec. 1559. Signed.
Orig. Add. Endd. by Cecil. Pp. 3.
Dec. 5.
R. O.
382. Mundt to Cecil.
1. Wrote last from this place on 21 Nov. Within two days afterwards he ascertained that the leaders of the Saxon cavalry who were in the pay of the French during the late war, (having been summoned by one Petrus Clarus, who was the interpreter of the said captains, and who had of late been sent back into Germany,) had assembled at Coburg upon 5 Nov. and had again taken an oath to serve the French King and the Duke of Guise, under the same conditions and at the same pay as they had served King Henry. The person who summoned them is now going to certain Princes, to the Counts William von Grombach and Ceduitsz, the chiefs of the cavalry, whom having visited, he returns into France. The place at which they met belongs to the children of John Frederick, and is situated in Franconia. John William, Duke of Saxony, who has of late returned from France, was not present at this meeting, but doubtless some of his people were there. It is probable that the King means to employ these troops against the Scots; but what route they will take, what their number, when they will march, etc., are matters as yet unknown to the writer.
2. Thinks it would be well were the Queen to intimate to the two Electors, the Palatine and him of Saxony, (who direct the other estates of the Confession of Augsburg,) that each of the Princes and cities should forbid their subjects from affording assistance to this impious King in slaughtering godly men and professors of Christ; or that the Scots themselves should send Orators as well to the Princes and States of the Augsburg Confession as also to the Landgrave himself, who generally is made aware of such like preparations. His son, who has been for some years in France, passed through this place yesterday on his road homewards.
3. The report is generally current here (it comes from the Court at Brussels, and is circulated everywhere by the Emperor's party,) that the Queen is about to marry Charles Archduke of Austria. All good people pray that he may be like his brother Maximilian rather than his father.
4. The French exiles for religion have obtained from our magistracy that twenty families should be admitted as citizens of this city; they are endeavouring also to obtain a home among the other Protestant cities. Wolfgang, the Elector Palatine, the Duke "Neoburgensis," the Landgrave of Hess, the Duke of Wurtemberg, the Marquis of Baden, and this city have sent their doctors to Treves to plead the cause of the persons imprisoned by the Bishop, who accuses them as seditious and breakers of the peace, just as in Æsop the wolf accuses the lamb of defiling the water.—Strasburg, 5 Dec. 1559. Signed.
Orig. Hol. Add. Lat. Pp. 3.
Dec. 5.
R. O. Sadler, 1. 623. No. CLXV.
383. Sadler and Croftes to Cecil.
1. Yesterday arrived here Alex. Whitlaw by sea from S. Andrews, with letters from the Earl of Arran and Lord James to Cecil, Lethington, and the writers; some being in a cipher unknown to them, they have sent them on. They wrote for 2,000l. They mean to assemble more power at Stirling for the relief of the castle of Edinburgh, for Lord Erskine, who has the custody thereof, has been attempted both by promises of rewards and by threats, by the Dowager and the French; but he says, having had the castle delivered to him by consent of the whole realm in Parliament, so he will keep it until discharged by Parliament. Therefore the French have made some countenance to besiege it, and one of them has been killed and two or three hurt. Erskine has required the Lords to draw nearer Edinburgh, to keep their assemblies at Stirling, and to aid him if need be, and has written for some relief in money for victualling the castle, wherefore they have required the said 2,000l., which the writers have thought good to send by Alex. Whitlaw, who has a boat to convey it by sea.
2. They think it very important that the French should not get Edinburgh Castle, for then, being masters of Leith, they would rule all on this side of the Firth, and therefore they have advised the said Lords to promise to perform all they shall in reason offer. Erskine and they are in good hope he will keep the castle honourably.
3. The Queen Dowager languishes in great sickness, her physicians think she cannot long continue.—Berwick, 5 Dec. 1559. Signed.
4. P. S.—Are told the Earl of Northumberland has let home the Earl Marshall's son on band; if so, it were good the band were sent to the writers that they might call him to his entry if they see cause, and also for the Lord Gray. Hearing that the French must be victualled from France, they therefore beg him to see that their supplies be stopped from time to time, which will greatly aid the cause.
Orig., in Raylton's hol. Add. Endd. by Cecil. Pp. 3.
Dec. 5.
MS. Burton-Constable.
384. Another copy of the above, with the P. S. in Croftes' hand.


  • 1. At the back is written by a contemporary hand: "The same took no place, by the Marquis' stay in France, for want of means to pass by the Queen's navy."
  • 2. The writers here repeat the contents of their letter of 29 Nov. (No. 337), and then proceed as above.