Elizabeth: March 1586, 26-31

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 20, September 1585-May 1586. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1921.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.


, 'Elizabeth: March 1586, 26-31', in Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 20, September 1585-May 1586, (London, 1921) pp. 491-510. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol20/pp491-510 [accessed 30 May 2024].

. "Elizabeth: March 1586, 26-31", in Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 20, September 1585-May 1586, (London, 1921) 491-510. British History Online, accessed May 30, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol20/pp491-510.

. "Elizabeth: March 1586, 26-31", Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 20, September 1585-May 1586, (London, 1921). 491-510. British History Online. Web. 30 May 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol20/pp491-510.

This volume has gold page scans.
Access these scans with a gold subscription. Key icon

March 1586, 26–31

March 26. Stafford to Walsingham.
Yesternight, upon receipt of yours of the 20th, I went again to the Count of Soissons, talked at large with him and sounded him. “I find all things as they were, whereupon I declared to him the dispatch I had received from the Queen, and what sums she had accorded to. He most humbly thanked her Majesty, and assured that if he lived, she should find, in anything he could serve her in, that he would show the bond he hath to her, and that in all things she should have commandment over him. . . . He desired that the sums might be increased to nine thousand; that many things and places of importance else would quail for a small thing, which would trouble them here greatly. I told him six thousand I could assure, but not more. The Count held up his hands to me and desired me that I would be a mean for that sum; that the Queen should find it the best bestowed money both for the general cause now, and her particular service hereafter that ever came from her.” Truly, I believe it will be so, and beseech you to be a suitor to her Majesty. At the least I entreat at her hands that if the whole three thousand more may not be granted (which I would desire) the half of it may be added. A little, in such a thing, may do great good, and the want of it great harm. “For in many enterprises some may fail, and must 'needs' therefore the more means to enterprise the more good, and without her Majesty it is not possible for them in this time to do anything that way. Above all others, I stand upon Perone, because I think hereafter it may stand her in best stead; which he assureth to hold most assured, if moon and seven stars be not against him.”
He desires to have it here by the 15 of April, French account, and I beseech you this may be effected, as I have promised it “and they build upon it, and indeed be somewhat pressed, for Biron's departure with his army is greatly hastened now again, and therefore they must haste the more. . . . With the grace of God, never France and the League had more irons put in the fire against them than at this time. I pray you therefore, beseech the Queen not to stick at a small thing. I hope it will be the last for that cause.”
For the coming of the money, letters of credit is the readiest and safest way. De Gozzi's cousin in England will have respondents here, and so I think have some of “Pallavesine's” folks. “The more persons the letters of credit be sent unto, the less the sums will be, and breed the less suspicion here.”
But if you send it in gold, I think the best way is to have it put up with wool or something “in a fat,” and for the better colour and safety, to get the French ambassador's passport, naming somewhat that is sent to me in it. I have written to Tupper to go presently back again to wait upon you and know your pleasure. The man is honest and can well do it, but sure letters of credit are the surest and quickest way. I dispatch the bearer in such haste that I write of nothing else.—26 March, 1586.
Postscript.—I beseech you once again to intreat her Majesty for the increase. I hope she shall have no cause to be sorry for it, put her in remembrance to write to me as I asked. “It will serve to great purpose to continue things in good terms, and keep folks here in good breath.”
Add. Endd. 2 pp. [France XV. 70.]
March 26. Buzanval to Walsingham.
I thank you humbly for the letters you have sent me. They will give you fresh trouble, for I have received a packet from the King of Navarre, with letters for her Majesty. Also the gentleman who wrote to me before does better and better, and advertises me as you saw by his first. The one I have just received is worth showing to her Majesty. I pray you to tell me when I may have the honour of kissing her hands.—London, 26 March.
Add. Endd. Fr. ¾ p. [Ibid. XV. 71.]
March 27. Stafford to Walsingham.
Since “this packet” was put up for Mr. Ashby, Mr. Vice-Chamberlain's man, he has had “some occasion of stay.” Sends one to meet John Tupper by the way and make him return back with it to his honour.—Paris, 27 March, 1586.
Holograph. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. XV. 72.]
March 27. M. Mignot to Walsingham.
Makes bold, as M. Molzet is going to the court, to write on behalf of the fifteen or twenty families, mostly gentlemen, who have taken refuge in this town. The inhabitants are as kind as possible, but a word from his honour will help to keep up their goodwill, seeing the humanity he has always shown to strangers. For, as the poet says:—
“On se plaist d' imiter tousjours gens de renom,
Mais ceux qui sont devant les yeux d' Agamemnon
Pour leur sage conseil; voire et ceux qui les suivent
On s' efforce tousjours de vivre comme ils vivent.”
He also recommends to his honour's favour some honourable ladies of family and note, who, seeing that the end of their time of prolongation is at hand, have determined to come hither to dwell.—Winchilsea, 27 March.
Add. Endd. “To write a letter of thanks unto the town of Winchilsea for the good usage that they show to the afflicted strangers.” Fr. 1 p. [France XV. 73.]
March 27./April 6. Thomas Beckner to Walsingham.
His last letter of the 4th instant, sent by Le Roy, the post, was only to advertise his honour of a letter sent to Mr. John Boddele, with one enclosed from John Douce. Has now received another, which he has sent away by John Touper. Prays his honour to remember him in his great necessity.—Rouen, 6 April, 1586, French style.
Add. Endd. ½ p. [Ibid. XV. 74.]
March 27./April 6. French Advertisements from the Court.
It is believed that the Protestants, Calvinists, Lutherans and Papists of Germany and Switzerland have come to an agreement. It is said that the reiters who formerly came into France for those of the Reformed Religion are demanding from the King of Navarre and his associates to be paid 350,000 crowns, which they say is due to them, before they will come to their aid, and that his Majesty [the French King] offers to pay them, in order to hinder their levy and coming hither.
His Majesty has given the potentates in Germany to understand that for his part he has no way approved of the civil war in France, and desires much to have his edicts observed, but cannot, by reason of the discords of the chief houses of his kingdom. He protests also that he is not of the League. Nevertheless, the report is held for certain that he is preparing four or five armies, one to be put in Languedoc beside that of the Duke du Mayne; another in Béarn (Byarn), another in Poitou and another for the frontiers, on the side of Switzerland and Germany.
Item. That the Prince of Savoy is going to besiege Geneva. That M. de Guise's people have massacred ten or twelve hundred persons, men, women and children, who had come out of Sedan and had withdrawn to a town near it.
It is believed to be true that a few days ago the King of Navarre was nearly taken by the Duke du Mayne, who surrounded him with twelve or fifteen hundred horse, so that if he had not been warned, he would have been in very great danger; but they say he is safe at Bergerac and has defeated two or three hundred of the said Duke's men.
There was a great bruit that the Queen of Navarre was dead, and that the King of Spain had offered the King of Navarre his daughter, in order to draw him to himself, but it is not true.
It is very certain that all the Leaguers have their eye on the Queen of England, to ruin her both in person and estate. The King of Spain is believed to have prepared a great sea fleet, and also that one is making ready in Brittany, so that England is in great danger.
It would be well for you to inquire underhand if twelve or fifteen days ago, there passed by you a man named Captain Chep, an Englishman, and if he spoke to the gentleman who is your near neighbour, how long he stayed and when he left. At his departure, he intended to go to see the said gentleman, and procure letters from him for an occasion which your said neighbour had possibly never discovered or heard of.
Some say that his Majesty has declared that he will employ all his means to ruin those of the Religion; others, that peace is made and assured and that this minister is working to draw money from the ecclesiastics and others.
It is thought here that M. de la Noue and M. Beauvoir le Nocle will shortly be at court with the deputies from Switzerland. No ambassadors are yet come from Germany.
M. de Guise is still at court.
Endd. Fr.pp. [Newsletters IX. 26.]
March 28. Stafford to Walsingham.
Though we cannot yet get any passports to dispatch anyone to you, I am hazarding the sending of this bearer, Jentill, another way, “having the means offered, and he a great desire to be gone,” and to be employed in any service that may please you. I have (according to the answer received from Mr. Wotton) given him my word in your name that he shall not be molested for his offence to Mr. Dennye before his departure out of England, “but be presently employed and receive entertainment according to his merits.”
Truly, Sir (though he committed that folly, which may be imputed to youth and want of judgment) since he has been here, I have found him a very honest, quiet man, wholly given to study and preferring the service of his prince and country before any other preferment. He has been often solicited to return to the service of the Prince of Parma, and Mr. Yorke, since his revolt, has written to persuade him to it, with offers of great entertainment, but he has refused all. For his sufficiency in his profession I hope you shall find it such that he deserves to be cherished. I would to God we had more such men.—Paris, 28 March, 1586.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1 p. [France XV. 75.]
March 28./April 7. William Lewckner to Edward Lewckner.
Since my last, those of Montelimar (Mountelemayr) have surprised a small village, where were sixty horse and as many foot of M. de la Vallette; the most part put to the sword, and sundry prisoners. M. de la Vallette has had rendered to him Beuchatell and Le Pousin, places of no force, and daily expects to recover Bays sur Bays [qy. Baix], “but being a place strong, it will not be gotten so easily; also victuals is so scant in his camp that many of his soldiers die for hunger,” so that he may have to withdraw his camp, which the merchants here wish for, or the speedy recovery of these holds, “to open the commerce.”
As to what I wrote of the advices of Venice, having good opportunity to obtain them, I thought good to do so until I see that you are furnished by other means.
Touching Geneva, I think nothing will be done there this year, and for the King of Spain's army, “given out to be to conduct his fleet for the Indies, and against Captain Drake . . . it is written out of Spain that his army is for England. God grant the contrary.”
I understand that the last news from Venice imported chiefly “of the overthrow of the Turk by the 'Sofye,' where he lost numbers of men and a hundred pieces of artillery, having stayed all the ships in his coasts for providing a new army, so that such merchants' ships which were laden for Marseilles and other parts were all unladen to serve his turn.
“Mr. Cecil is arrived at Geneva out of Italy, and purposeth to take his journey through Germany.”—Lyons, 7 April, 1586.
Add. Endd. 1 p. [France XV. 76.]
March 28
[date of event].
Account by Capt. Crips of the mutiny at Utrecht on March 28.
The Earl of Leicester going to Count Maurice to dinner, there came certain soldiers of Capt. Thomas Poole's company, and one A.T. in behalf of the rest, demanded their pay. His Excellency conferred with Sir John Norreys, who commanded me, Peter Crips, then marshal, to take and hang the said A.T., whom I carried to prison. Then all the soldiers in the town “grew into arms,” broke open the prison, carried away the said A.T. and offered to shoot at me and my men, staying me by force while the prisoner was carried away.
At that instant, two companies of “Welshmen” came into the town, by whose aid the prisoner was again committed to prison, with nine of the chief mutineers. Sir John then ordered every company to march severally to camp, and when they were ready, cane to his own company, and finding one using mutinous words, struck him and hurt him in the arm and sent him to the marshal; and another being not ready, cut him on the head, “who are both living without danger of death, except they be hanged . . . but the report was that they were both dead.”
The companies then marched towards the camp, and being out of the town, those in the Marshalsea accused one Roger Greene of being “one of the principal that brake up the prison.” Whereupon Sir John sent Captain Roper to fetch him. Being sent back, I carried him and the rest before his Excellency, who gave order that Doctor Clarke and I should examine them; who giving information to his Excellency, he gave me commission for the [hangin]g of three of them in the presence of the other seven, who were released the same day, March 29, 1586, and marched to the camp.
Endd. July, 1587 [sic]. “Declaration of Captain 'Crispe' and others touching the mutiny at Utrecht in March last.”
pp. [Holland VII. 52.]
March 29./April 8. M. de Bacqueville to Walsingham.
Although I wrote to you a few days ago upon the affairs of a friend of mine, I do not cease to try to maintain myself in your good graces, as one of your most affectionate friends.
I find from Mr. Chute that some of his enemies have been trying to spread some ill report of him. I can assure you that I know nothing of him but as very honest man. If I had perceived anything else, I should have been the first to have told you of it, in order that advice thereof might be given to her Majesty, as the princess whom I love and honour beyond any other in the world.—Baqueville, 8 April, 1586.
Add. Endd. “To M. Oyslingant,” &c. Fr. 1 p. [France XV. 77.]
March 29. Richard Cavendish to Burghley.
Touching the mutiny here yesterday, the bearer will declare the whole to you.
“Good my lord, be careful to repair her Majesty's good opinion of my lord's most orderly, wise and dutiful proceedings here, for undoubtedly if her highness proceed in hard conceit of his dealing, I fear to write what ill may grow thereby; . . . but having written thereof before, I cease to trouble you herein any more.”
There are daily complaints brought to him of the evil dealings of the treasurers here in the use of her Majesty's money, both to the abuse of her highness and of her people here. And though I wish well to the gentleman who has the chief place I cannot conceal it from you, for divers things concerning it are so constantly avouched.
I pray you send Sir William Pelham away with speed. How much this service needs him none can better inform you than good Sir William Stanley.—Utrecht, 29 March, 1586.
Add. Endd. ¾ p. [Holland VII. 53.]
March 29. Leicester to Burghley.
Since my last from Amsterdam, advertising you of my cousin Thomas Cecil's determination to go into England and my request to him to stay awhile, his extremity of sickness has been such— and himself ready to take ship—that there was no reason for him to stay. He has never had his health here, and was not a little troubled to receive no money for his soldiers, who are further behind than I thought they could be, or know they should be. You may see to what day the Treasurer asks allowance, and besides that, he has warrant from me to pay another month beforehand; but he has not paid that garrison “nor many other.” There is some very ill service, and for remedy you must send some wise, stout, skilful auditor to examine the accounts. He who was here is a very honest, sufficient man, but there must be another joined with him, “for I will assure you, here be that will taste [qy task] their cunning.” The Treasurer has lain at Middleburg these two months, and as he told me at his departing that he had no money in his hands, I wrote to the merchants to lend 4,000l., “to relieve some neediest sort, and to furnish this little camp . . . which they have done. I myself have prested above 3,000l. among out men here since I came, and yet what need they be in, even when there is most need of service, all the world here doth see. Here hath been as lewd and as dangerous mutinies, as I cannot but grieve to think on it. Sir Thomas Heneage is here present and can tell what hath been done in appeasing it, and so can this gentleman, Sir William Stanley, a man of great valour, and your lordship shall know the cause of his coming. But, my lord, if you send not money with all haste possible, I fear you will hear of such disorders as will mislike you. I protest to your lordship, next the grief of her Majesty's displeasure, there was never thing that did so touch me, as to see the sudden disobedience grown of some of our soldiers within these ten days. I was fain to apprehend some myself and by mine own means the rest, as this bearer will tell you, and caused a few to be executed, a matter in respect of the honour of her Majesty and our nation, I had rather have gone a thousand mile on foot; for I thank God there was not one man that deserved death since I came over, either for mutiny or disobedience till now within these two days.
“Somewhat began four days past at Bergen op Zoom, which was presently quieted, but a dangerous place and an ill time chosen, and the other this day here in this town, which was well ended, as this bearer can tell you. But there must needs be somewhat else beside want of money, for they have lacked money these three or four months, and relieved by nobody but myself. And now they had by the means of that I borrowed for them almost a month's pay paid them. But I hope there shall be no more of this dealing, and I beseech you, my lord, consider of it, whatsoever her Majesty's pleasure shall be with me, yet remember the cause, and the miserable state of the soldiers. And as these men were by this borrowed money now relieved, and of necessity for a time must keep the field, or hazard the loss of divers places, so was I fain to set out all our whole troops of horsemen (being near eight hundred) only of mine own purse out of the towns they were in, And being in the field are like to have no penny but of me, which I refer to your lordship to think of my case, and the whole case here, having not had one penny of her Majesty's treasure here since January, nor the Treasurer, nor any credit but mine own provision and little plate and 'vessel' which is now packing; for I have spent and laid out all that ever I brought with me. And for the Brill, since I did learn from my cousin Cecil that the Treasurer did not pay him so much as he told me he had, I have written again to the merchants to take up two thousand pounds more to pay that and Ostend, which is in worst case for payment of all others, and I fear it most, only for lack of money, but nothing else. I have troubled your lordship very long, and I will leave particular matters to this bearer, and for myself I know not what shall become of me; but her Majesty had been better to have given Sir William Pelham twice his debt, than have stayed him there. It hath cost her three times so much his lack.”—Utrecht, 29 March, 1586.
Signed. Add. Endd. 2 pp. [Holland VII. 54.]
March 29./April 8. Gonzales Fernandes de Cordua to the Cantons of Uri, Schweitz, and Unterwalden.
Stating that Colonel Berlinger has spoken to him on their behalf concerning the payment of what remains owing for the passage of the German soldiers, and assuring them of his desire to give them satisfaction therein. Hopes that very shortly his Majesty will give orders for provision of the money.
The Colonel also spoke to him of the anxiety it has caused them to see so near their states the troops of the Emperor. According to all that he has learnt of his Imperial Majesty's intentions, he believes he may certainly assure them that in no case shall those movements tend to anything which may cause them dissatisfaction. Knowing the close relationship and unity of plans between the Emperor and the King his master, they may hold it for certain that maintaining themselves—as they do—in the King's good graces, they will have all consideration from the Emperor.—Camp above Casale, 8 April.
Copy. Endd. as received “from Oliver Fleming.” Italian. 1 p. [Switzerland I. 16.]
March 30./April 9. Extract of a letter from a gentleman of the late M. de la Val to the Countess de la Val.
Since it pleased God to call Monsieur into this province, he has so well served his party that even the enemy is constrained to avow his virtues, acknowledging, as well as do ours, that the happy return which he made into this country on leaving the river of Loire, in spite of the forces brought against him, as entirely saved the towns and places of this country; having put his own person there without fear of the plague which was raging, in order to give courage to his men to go thither with him to meet the armies of M. du Mayne and M. de Matignon, who were then very near to these towns; and acknowledging the good order that my lord had taken there, both as to the number of soldiers as for the necessary munitions, have not dared to attack any place in this province. And having retired towards Gascony, my lord there did many fine exploits, receiving no reverses except that it pleased God to take from this world by sickness the late M. de Tanlay; and since by the grace of God, my lord's good fortune has so continued that he has taken a great number of places and strong castles, to the great convenience of the towns there.
Although there has been nothing which has not infinitely increased his reputation, proving his great valour and prudence, yet it having pleased God to visit him with great affliction, I should not have dared to write to you but for the commandment which it pleased him to give me, as being himself continually employed with the affairs which hourly present themselves. On Sunday last, the 6th of this month, my lord mounted his horse with the Prince, intending to attack and break the foot regiment under the charge of Tiercelan, master of the camp, and some cavalry partly of the nobles of the country, partly of Albanois which they thought were coming from Brouage to Xaintes. Receiving advertisement that these would not come that day, they were about to retire, when they discovered some forty horse issuing out of Xaintes in good order, desiring, as we judged, to draw us to their harquebusiers, whom they had also caused to draw out. My lord and his company marched straight upon them so furiously and rapidly that in spite of their harquebusiers and some ditches upon the road, he joined and came to blows with them, putting them into the faubourgs. They lost four gentlemen of quality, and ten who retired badly wounded, and most of whom died next day. On my lord's side the only loss was one horse killed and another wounded. He won by this charge great reputation, having also been marvellously well supported by his company. The next afternoon, the Prince was informed that Tiercelan's regiment, with his cavalry, was passing. He mounted his horse and went so quickly that he reached the enemy near Zaintes and there was a skirmish, when M. de la Tremouille had a horse killed under him; but my lord, being with his company lodged at a distance, came a league and a half at the gallop, and passing in front of the Prince, made sign that he should charge; which he did without any halt and hurled himself upon the footmen, their cavalry flying before him, and being arrived at the Colonel's ensign, he fought hand to hand with him who carried it, flung him to earth and took the ensign. Afterwards, my lord, fighting always with great hazard— the place and country being very advantageous for infantry—received a great blow from a pike on his horse's head. But, alas, Madame, it grieves me infinitely to tell you that M. de Rieux, after doing inconceivably well, and his horse being sorely wounded, was at last struck by a great blow from a pike in his stomach, and M. de Tanlay (fn. 1) by a harquebusier in the head. They were both carried to the same place, where M. de Tanlay, who had lost his speech, died at eight o'clock next morning, and M. de Rieux. after continually praying to God and calling upon him, cried out that he saw the heavens open, and the Son of God sitting on the right hand of the Father, and incontinently gave up his soul to God, about five o'clock in the evening. I doubt not, Madame, but that you will bear with fortitude the visitation which it has pleased God to send upon this house, knowing well that it is those whom the Lord loves to whom he gives the honour of bearing the cross of his Son our Lord. Truly, we have suffered a great loss, but those who die in God's quarrel gain a celestial crown, and enjoy eternal life. I pray God to give you grace to support it as my Lord has done, showing thereby his confidence in the promises of the Eternal. M. de Quergrois has been wounded by a harquebus in the knee, M. de Rochegiffard's brother in the leg, and M. de la Landeronde in the thing. These are all of outs who are wounded. Some horses have been killed and wounded. Of the other companies there are three or four gentlemen wounded and one killed, which is all the loss on our side. The enemy was in the end completely routed, leaving about a hundred and fifty dead on the place, and large number of prisoners.—Taillebourg, 9 April, 1586.
Endd. Fr. 2 pp. [France XV. 78.]
March 30. The Queen to Leicester.
“Whereas of late, upon understanding that contrary to our express commandment you had accepted the absolute government of the United Provinces, we sent unto you our servant Sir Thomas Heneage to let you know how just cause we had to dislike of your undutiful manner of proceeding, as well in respect of the acceptation thereof contrary to our mind to you declared afore your departure from us, as that it was done and so continued without certifying us thereof, either before or a good while after you had taken it upon you; we cannot but let you know that although we see no cause, for anything that hath been yet delivered us in your defence to allow of your said proceeding, yet in respect of the care we have to avoid the inconvenience that might fall out by the present execution of our commandment touching the renunciation of the said government, we are content you shall continue the same for a time, until we shall consider what further order were meet to be taken in that behalf. And for the satisfying of the Council of State therein, who may perhaps be drawn to conceive otherwise of us than we mean upon the view of the late letters sent unto them, we have as you may perceive by the copy of the said letters let them understand how we are pleased to continue your government there for a time, in that sort as you accepted the same.
Endd. “Minute of a letter from her Majesty to the Earl of Leicester”; and in another hand “March 30, 1586. Not sent. 1½ pp. [Holland VII. 55.]
March 30. The Queen to the Council of State.
As, upon the advertisement given us of our cousin, the Earl of Leicester's acceptance of the absolute government of the United Provinces, although he knew that it was not our will and intention (in which our honour was greatly concerned, so that we could not but resent it) we at once dispatched our well beloved Sieur Heneage, to cause him to lay down the said authority, for the reasons contained in the letter which we sent by him:—Having since reflected that this might not be easily effected without danger of some change and disturbance in the state, which we would by no means have happen, having always been as we always shall be, very careful for the welfare and preservation thereof: We have now determined (for a greater testimony of the affect on we bear you and in order that it may be evident to you that we would not wish to forget anything which may tend to the good and advancement of your affairs) to continue and establish our said cousin for a time in the authority and government which he at present exercises, until affairs may be reduced into the state most convenient and proper for our contentment and for the welfare of the whole country.
Endd “Minute to the States, March 30, 1586. Not sent.” [Holland VII. 56.]
March 30. The Queen to the Council of State.
Finds by their letters that they are grieved at her mislike of their offer to her cousin Leicester of the absolute government of the United Provinces, without her privity and contrary to her express commandment to the said Earl. Explains her reasons for her “mislike”; reminds them that although there was nothing in his acceptance of the said government incompatible with he treaty with them, she had always set her face against such a step; assures them of her love to them (for whose sake she is opposing one of the mightiest potentates in Europe) and to the Earl, whom she esteems to be as greatly devoted towards her “as ever subject was to prince,” and begs them neither to diminish their goodwill nor their respect to him, who for their sake “is content to expose both his life and fortune unto any peril.” which is not the least cause why she esteems so highly of him. And as they have signified that the commission and authority granted to him cannot be revoked without great peril to the State, she has given authority to him and to Sir Thomas Heneage to confer with them upon some course to be taken by which her honour may be saved and the peril avoided.
Copy. Endd. “Copy of her Majesty' letter to the States.” 2½ pp. [Ibid. VII. 57.]
[This is not set out at greater length as it is printed almost verbatim by Motley, i, 437, 438. (fn. 2) ]
Draft of the same in French.
Endd. “Her Majesty to the Council of State.” 5¼ pp. [Ibid. VII. 58.]
Draft headed “A minute of a letter to the State”; corrected by Walsingham. As corrected it would be a later form, the draft coinciding with the two preceding.
Endd. “Minute of a letter from her Majesty to the States of the Low Countries.” 5¼ pp. [Holland VII. 59.]
March 30. Leicester to Admiral Howard and Walsingham.
Yesterday came to me Tompson, an English merchant and with him an officer of the Admiralty of Zeeland, to inform against him for two ships of his bound for Dunkirk, laden with victuals and taken by the Flushingers at sea. Tompson tells me of the intent of the voyage, and I heartily thank your lordship for the care you have taken, and regret the mischance which has disturbed so good a purpose. I have imparted the case to the governor of Flushing, Henry Killigrew and Valcke, the councillor of Zeeland, and we are all of opinion “that considering the most strait order taken here for the restraint of this people in such cases,” and the public knowledge of the matter at Flushing, these victuals may not be carried away from thence. But to do all I may for the man, I have written for them to be sold at the best price, and for sequestration of the money till I hear from England, hoping that by that time some means may be found to satisfy all parties. If Tompson might be set out again in England, and do some service, I make little doubt of getting him full restitution.—Utrecht, 30 March, 1586.
Postscript.—Your lordship's passport for Dunkirk and Mr. Secretary's letter to the governor were brought me opened. “It is marvelled that the merchant should carry 300l. worth of salt, as he saith.”
Holograph. Add. Endd. as sent “by Richard Tomson.” 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 60.]
March 30. The Privy Council to Leicester.
We understand that the Merchants Adventurers having already made provision of cloths (and meaning to make a greater) whereof part were to be transported to Embden, your lordship hath advised them to forbear their wonted trade to that place until they heard further from you, as you had advertisement “that Count Edzard had a secret purpose to run the Spanish course,” whereupon it falls out that the clothiers, “wanting utterance” for their cloth, cannot set the poor people on work; which in this dear year happens so unseasonably (and the rather as the merchant is stopped from his wonted vent in Spain and other places by reason of the unkindness between Spain and us) that unless the poor people he otherwise provided for dangerous inconvenience may fall out here by reason of the new restraint.
We have therefore encouraged the merchants to go forward with their voyage to Embden. and have good hope that their quiet enjoyment of their trade there may be continued, as we hear that her Majesty's letters to the Count (on behalf of the merchants) were come to him and that the merchants have received a very favourable answer at his hands. Besides, we hope that the travail of William Herle (whom we directed you to send to the Count) may work good effect. We have acquainted the merchants with your request for the drawing of their trade into Holland, whose answer you may see by the enclosed [wanting]. The greatest impediment to it is that the merchants cannot have free and quiet passage up and down the Rhine, and we think those of Nimweghen should be sounded underhand whether they would not stand as neuters in respect of the benefit they would gain by tolls and by the trade in those parts.
Draft, corrected by Walsingham. Endd. with date. 3¼ pp. [Holland VII. 61.]
[Possibly the letter ordered to be sent on April 2, but not transcribed in the Book of Acts. See Acts of the Privy Council, under that date.]
March 31./April 10. T. Fitzherbert Swynnerton to Walsingham.
Understanding by my lord Ambassador of your favourable dealing in my behalf with her Majesty, and that she “was not only contented with my present course in the service of Queen Mother, but also otherwise inclined to favour me . . . I thought myself fortunate in my poor estate,” but now Mr. Aldred tells me that upon some sinister information, your honour has diverted your favour from me and my sureties, “for whom, in respect of the wrong they have had, I am more careful than for myself.” I beseech you to suspend your judgment until you hear my answer, and “in the meantime, to consider the corruption of base companions, that serve for informers in all states, . . . who, to gain favour, will make matter rather than want, and upon every little foundation will build towers of untruths.” I pray that I may be examined by my lord Ambassador here, before whom I will truly answer to all matter objected against me; being confident of my own innocency, and appealing in the meantime to your wisdom and charitable construction of my actions.—Paris, 10 April.
Add. Endd. Seal of arms. ¾ p. [France XV. 79.]
March 31. Sir Thomas Cecil's Account.
Paper, endorsed by Burghley “Ulto. Martii. Thomas Cecil's account for his entertainment at the Brill from his arrival. From 8 November, 1585, to the last of March, 1586. A debt to him of 863l.”
1 p. [Holland VII. 62.]
March 31. de Loo to Burghley.
By my last of the 23rd instant, I told your lordship the substance of what Signor Lanfranchi wrote to me on the 19th; who now advises me that my letters were sent to Brussels and very well received by his Highness, who—considering the zeal and affection of Signor Carlo there and of my unworthy self here, —was applying himself to bring back this crown into union with that of Spain, and showed himself very well satisfied, especially by the certainty given him of the gracious and constant inclination of her Majesty of peace, and that she values the Kindness and friendship of the Catholic King, as also his Highness knows very well that the King is of the same mind towards her. Having written to him whether he thought it would be well that I should go over, he said that if I went as a neutral person, we might conclude what would be needful, and he would bring me to speak with the Prince, of whom (he assured me) I shall find things to report to her Majesty that cannot but please her greatly, if she will proceed with that unfeigned sincerity which they promise to do, the desired end of the renewal of their friendship may, without doubt, very soon be reached.
And her Majesty will gain her purpose with such glory and fortune that of all memorable things done by her this will be narrated for the chiefest; to whom it will be a high and perpetual consolation to be able, by a good peace, quietly to enjoy the sweet fruits of the happy tranquillity of her royal crown, whereas on the contrary, at the end of so many years that she has prosperously reigned, if the fire which is lighted should not be put out, and if they came to violent blows, it could not but cause great disquiet; and likewise to the Catholic King, who, it may well be judged, by the age he has reached, would much rather be quiet than be forced (and he will not do it unless he be greatly forced) to make war against the Queen his sister. Praying that with your lordship's pardon this my small discourse may be kindly accepted as proceeding from a loyal and sincere heart; and if God will be pleased to grant that my zeal and desire may be satisfied by seeing two such noble crowns, dispersing the dark clouds, again unite and kiss each other fraternally in clear and open light with the kiss of holy peace, I shall hold myself to be more happy and blessed that if I had been granted all the gold in the world.
And as to M. de Champagny, by the letter he has written me, he shows just he opposite of what has been unjustly spread abroad of him, desiring to prove it by deeds and not by words, and that her Majesty will always find him very well affectioned, as he fells bound to be by the kindnesses he has received from her, and promising to give me any help to facilitate the guiding of the ship the more quickly into a good haven, it being sufficient for him to know that he is assured of her Majesty's good intentions, according to what I have written to him, so that the negotiation may go on in that way more expeditiously than is expected to give her Majesty full satisfaction. I pray you to communicate what I have said to the Queen at the first opportunity, in order that we may think at this holy time of putting the design into happy execution.—London, 31 March, 1586.
As the post leaves to-morrow or next day, I should like to be able to reply as your lordship may think most fitting, assuring you that in this treaty I will act in perfect good faith; as also Signor Carlo promises me to do on that side.
Add. Endd. by Burghley. Italian. 2 pp. [Flanders I. 69.]
March 31. Frederick, King of Denmark to Elizabeth.
David Jansen, Albert Alberti and their partners, inhabitants of his kingdom, having complained to him of grave injuries done to them by pirates, under the leadership of Captain Digory Piper, an Englishman, as her Majesty may see by the petition hereto annexed; he cannot but be much amazed that such things should be done by her subjects, although no interdict of navigation has been made, nor any admonition given beforehand; and especially, he can hardly be induced to believe that the pirates who did these things are seen going about openly in London without constraint; which things being unjust in themselves and contrary to all law, he cannot but take very amiss, and craves that she will severely punish those wicked men who have violated the rights of his people and made attack upon their lives and goods. For otherwise, they will not cease to complain to him touching their wrongs, and to demand that English ships shall be stayed in his realm, in which he could not be wanting to his subjects, although otherwise ready to show all fraternal affection to her Majesty. And since they have sent one Thomas Fennker to plead their cause, he prays her in friendly and brotherly manner, that they may in justice and equity receive what is fair and right, according to treaties and to humanity.—Cronburg, 31 March, 1586.
Signed. Add. Endd. Latin. 1½ pp. [Denmark I. 80.]
Copy of petition above mentioned, signed by David Jansen, Albert Alberti, Jacob Moller, Jacob Fochtel, Goris Boldino and Jorg Bornhoten (?); giving account of their injuries and losses from the proceedings of the said pirates.
Latin. 3 pp. [Ibid. I. 80a.]
March. The Duke of Bouillon to Walsingham.
On behalf of the Sieur de Clacton, who has been brought up in his household, and has an important cause before her Majesty's Council, of which the settlement is delayed by the friends of the “party.” Begs that he may be aided in the preservation of his rights.—Sedan, —March, 1586.
Signed. Add. Endd. Fr. ½ p. [France XV. 80.]
[March ?] “Allowances to be given to Mr. Treasurer for money issued in Holland and taken up by exchange at lower rates than ten guilders the pound.” Total, 710l. 4s. 4d.
Endd. “Loss of money taken up by exchange.” And in pencil, “March, 1586.” I p. [Holland VII. 63.]
[March ?] Brief declaration of the principal persons of credit in the Duchy of Gueldres.
Burgomasters of Arnhem. The Sieur Gelder and Maitre Olbertus vanden Burch.
Burgomasters of Harderwyck. The Sieurs Rutger van Harsolte and Jehan van Adenhem.
The Sieur Geerard Voet, councillor of the Chancery.
N. Sluyskens, first secretary of the same.
The Sieur T[hi]erry de Westrem in Languendonck, councillor of the same.
Burgomaster of Venloo. N. Ingebetue.
Euert van Delen [?] van Laer.
The Sieur Jehan de Gand, Sieur d'Oyen.
N. Vande Cappelle of Arnhem.
The Sieur Joachim of Lier.
The Sieur Lennep and Dr. Verequen.
Endd. 1586 (later hand). 1 p. [Holland VII. 64.]
[Noted in pencil as found with the papers of March, 1586.]
[March ?] List of towns in the United Provinces, both those in the hands of the States with their garrisons and those occupied by the enemy. N.B.—The enemy holds no place in Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht or Frise.
Endd. Fr.pp. [Ibid. VII. 65.]
[Noted in pencil, ut supra.]
[March ?] Merchants of Delef to Leicester.
“Remonstrance” made to his Excellency by the merchants of Delft, sent for the consideration of her Majesty's Council. For the enforcement by the Queen of the prohibition of the sending of victuals to the enemy or into France, whence it is carried into the enemy's countries.
Copy. Endd. French. 1¼ pp. [Ibid. VII. 66.]
English translation of the above.
pp. [Ibid. VII. 67.]
[March ?] M. Ortell to the Queen.
Praying her to give her assent to the placcard forbidding traffic with Spain, and offering certain propositions by which the merchants might still carry thither such commodities as shall be thought least harmful.
Endd.pp. [Ibid. VII. 68.]
[March ?] “Certain postiles (by Walsingham) conceived upon view of M. Ortell's propositions.”
A. The trade of Calais with merchandise cannot be inhibited, but the carrying of victuals, ammunition &c. to places on this place or within the Seine is to be so.
B. If the trade to Spain could be stayed, “without great hindrance to the general contribution,” it were meet to be done, as it is greatly to be doubted that the King of Spain will this year arrest both ships and goods, if he means to attempt anything in these parts by sea.
C. For the ships brought into Dover, at a conference between the Lord Admiral, Lord Warden and “myself” it was ordered that the Lord Warden, assisted by the Judge of the Admiralty, should determine the matter. He is to be asked what he has done therein.
D. The request to have the transgressors of the placcard judged by themselves is very reasonable, “so as” the punishment of her Majesty's subjects be referred over hither; they having received very hard measure in the Admiralty court of Zeeland. Neither is it convenient that such as serve under the States' licence should bring their prizes into this realm.
E. Letters are already written to the Count of Embden, but not yet signed by her Majesty.
Draft, corrected by Walsingham. Endd.pp. [Holland VII. 69.]
[These points are none of them touched upon in the short “Proposition” calendared above.]
[March ?] Paper endorsed “A discourse what commodities or discommodities may grow to the United Provinces by suffering of victuals to pass to the enemy and continuing to traffic with them.”
Fr. 12 pp. [Ibid. VII. 70.]
[March. (fn. 3) ] Warrant from [Colonel Norreys ?] for the bearer ” A. B.” appointed extraordinary victualler to her Majesty's forces in the Low Countries, to be allowed to pass and repass freely with his waggons and victuals &c., and for all men to be aiding and assisting to him. Utrecht, —April, 1586.
Rough draft in English. ½ p. [Ibid. VII. 71.]
On the same sheet.
Commission from John Norreys, Lord President of Munster, and Colonel-general of the English footmen in the Low Countries, to Peter Crispe, gentleman, to be Provost Marshal over the said footmen, both in the field and in garrison.
Draft. 2 pp. [Ibid. VII. 71a.]
Another draft of the same.
3 pp. [Ibid. VII. 72.]
[March.] A memorial for Mr. Doctor Hector [Nuñez].
1. “Her Majesty hath no meaning, as she hath notified by her Declaration, to make herself a proprietary of the United Provinces.
2. “She can like to treat with the King of Spain for the restoring of these countries into his possession, so as there may be good security given by towns and hostages that they shall enjoy the benefit of some like Pacification as was agreed on at the treaty at 'Gaunte,'” and that she shall be repaid the money she has employed for defence and relief of those countries.
3. Unless the King will in some sort yield to a toleration in religion, “here is no hope that any treaty will take place.”
4. She daily discovers that Don Bernardino, lying in France, gives assurance to her ill-affected subjects that his master and the rest of the Catholic princes mean to deprive her Majesty of this crown and to set up the Scottish Queen.
5. Her subjects find themselves so strong by the possession of Holland and Zeeland that they greatly desire her to “make herself a proprietary” of them, for the maintenance whereof they offer large contributions.
6. If God called her out of this life, “no successor of hers would ever assent to the rendering up of those countries.”
7. “Mr. Anthonio de Castillio may be employed here about this treaty, under the colour of dealing for Portingale causes.”
Endd. “1586. Mr. Secretary's memorial, delivered to Dr. Hector.”½ p. [Spain II. 63.]
March. News from Germany.
The 2nd October, 1585, the Duchess of Saxony died; on the 3rd of Jan., 1586, the Duke married Agnes, daughter of the Prince of Anhalt. Feb. 11, as the Duke was hunting he felt a pain in his head, and died that night.
Dr. Boucherus, whom the said Duke long kept in close prison, had been delivered to the Prince of Anhalt, on condition that he should not leave that Prince's dominions nor write against the Duke, his adversaries or their doctrine. For this the Prince was surety, but within eight days after, “for changing of air,” the doctor died.
Last Christmas the French King sent his marshal of the camp, Casper of Schonburg, into Germany to “agree” with Duke John Casimir and his company for the debt he owes them. After long conference at “Deuxpoings,” the marshal offered to pay 100,000 crowns ready money, and every Frankfort market 50,000 more till the whole was paid. But they say, my lord and his company “should promise and obligate themselves” not to go into France to aid the King of Navarre and his consorts in religion against the said King and Duke of Guise, or provoke any other to do it. “Whereupon my lord's ambassadors and the generals did answer 'What, not the King of Navarre and the oppressed church? That we cannot find in our conscience to do: but to help and comfort them; and if the French King will not pay us, then he shall know that our meaning is to go with all force that we are able to make, and aid them and fetch our debts, and will destroy [him] and his kingdom.'” On Jan. 26, the marshal departed for France.
On the Deputation day at Worms, the Emperor, by his ambassadors, demanded a great sum to help certain towns. “as Nues, Bercke” [i.e. Neuss and Rheinberg], oppressed of the adversaries, but nothing granted.
The Bishop of “Lucke” [Liége] alias Cologne, the same day by his ambassadors demanded aid with money or men, or else he would be forced “to call strange nations, which is forbidden by the Emperor's laws.”
The Emperor also demanded that they should declare the Queen of England an enemy to the Empire, which is not granted; and, upon the Pope's request—that the bishops and popish princes should join in a league against her with the King of Spain.
The King of Denmark sent ambassadors to the King of France, and the protestant princes have agreed to do the same, to remind him of his promise to the King of Navarre and the protestants “to keep peace and suffer the gospel to be preached in appointed places,” and if he refuse it, will with great force help the said King of Navarre and the oppressed church against his Majesty and his helpers.
[Measures taken by the Duke of Lorraine to procure money and men.] Part of the men to be in garrisons, the rest on the coasts of Germany to keep the Germans from going to help the King of Navarre and the gospel. “But it is to be thought, when he gets such force, that he with the Duke of Guise will do another mischief in Germany.”
A little before Christmas he caused all his subjects to be examined, and all who would not be papist to sell their goods and avoid his land, on pain of death; whereupon many left, and many more “did turn, with great heaviness of their conscience.”
They say that the Prince of Parma is returning home, and the Duke of Savoy to be governor in the Low Countries, who is gathering 10,000 Italians and Spaniards to bring with him.
M. La Noye [La Noue] is made governor of Geneva.
In Senna [qy. Siena] were taken certain Dutchmen [i.e. Germans], students, whom the Pope caused to be brought to Rome, amongst them being the Chancellor of Saxony's son. The Duke of Bavaria has prayed for him to be saved; the rest must die.
The Lutherans of the Low Country dwelling at Frankfort have requested the magistrates there to give them a church that they may preach and minister in French; but the magistrates refused it, “because there is already a French church, and hath been above thirty years, so that they fear it might follow like at Antwerp and in Flanders betwixt the 'Lutterien' and Huguenots.”
The Dukes of Saxony, Brandenburg and Hesse have forbidden their subjects to serve any [foreign] princes. In Germany there is no taking of soldiers for France, Navarre or Spain, “but they live all in good hope.”
Endd. “Occurrents out of Germany. March, 1586. By Zulcher.” 3 pp. [Newsletters XXVII. 21.]
[March or April ?] Paper endorsed “A discourse touching the 'defence' of the traffic with the Spaniard. 1586.”
Begins by stating that it is notorious that it is permitted to all realms and provinces in time of war to forbid other nations to traffic with their enemies, on pain of confiscation, as has been seen in the war of the Venetians against the Turk, when the former pillaged all those who traded to Alexandria. Considers that to forbid everything is not advisable, seeing that certain traffic is needed to maintain workpeople, manufacturers and navigation. Shows objections to a prohibition unless it is made general for all countries. As to France, if the Queen do not like to do anything, freebooters in plenty may be found, who in the name of the King of Navarre, will hinder the traffic.
French. 2½ pp. [Holland VII. 73.]
[March or April ?] Paper in Palavicino's handwriting, endorsed by Burghley: “1586. The account how the money hath been taken up. Horatio Palavicino and his servants”; i.e. for his negotiations with Duke Casimir &c.
Italian. 1 p. [Ibid. VII. 74.]
[Stated to have been found with the papers of March, 1586.]


  • 1. This must be either a slip or the copyist's mistake, as the writer has already mentioned M. de Tanlay's death. No doubt M. de Sailli is meant. De Thoustates that he died from a wound in the head, received in the battle, and also mentions that de Tanlay had died of disease shortly before.
  • 2. Motley quotes this letter as written to the States General: but as he himself states (i, 423n) the States General were not in session at this date. This letter and that to Leicester above are alluded to by Burghley in his to Leicester of March 31. See Leycester Correspondence, p. 198.
  • 3. In documents intended to be seen by Holland and Zeeland officials, the English commanders usually used the style of the country. Crispe was already Provost Marshal on March 28. See p. 495 above.