Elizabeth: December 1588, 21-31

Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 22, July-December 1588. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1936.

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


, 'Elizabeth: December 1588, 21-31', in Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 22, July-December 1588, (London, 1936) pp. 386-404. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol22/pp386-404 [accessed 30 May 2024].

. "Elizabeth: December 1588, 21-31", in Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 22, July-December 1588, (London, 1936) 386-404. British History Online, accessed May 30, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol22/pp386-404.

. "Elizabeth: December 1588, 21-31", Calendar of State Papers Foreign: Elizabeth, Volume 22, July-December 1588, (London, 1936). 386-404. British History Online. Web. 30 May 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-state-papers/foreign/vol22/pp386-404.

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

December 1588, 21-31

Dec. 21. Sir John Conway to Walsingham.
Informed the Lord General, the States, and Sir John Norres at his leaving here, of the state of this place, but though he has received letters from them they afford no hope of relief in sufficient time to make the place tenable. They made no mention of supplying his wants of victuals, munition, and men, or of means to repair the sea defences, but instead wrote to withdraw six companies. Their four new companies hardly added the equivalent of 150 good men to their strength, nor would their withdrawal weaken them more than that: but to withdraw two or three of the old companies now that the enemy is near and the place lies open to the sea, would be to invite attack. Seven companies could not now defend the place. Desires his honour to be a means that none of the old companies be withdrawn until the place is better fortified or the enemy has withdrawn from these coasts. There are 16,000 of the enemy within six hours march of this town.
The King and the Duke of Parma intend to be careful to defend this town from the sea, because if it is drowned practically the whole country as far as Gawnt will be lost. This, together with the hindrance which this garrison is to him, makes him the more eager to recover the town. The Prince knows the state of the town as well as Conway does, for, as two sides of it lie open, it is impossible to prevent the ill disposed from running to the enemy. He is ready to risk losing 20,000 men to win the town: threequarters of an hour would see him in possession or thoroughly overthrown. The full 13 companies, if all were complete, would be few enough to resist the attack, but seven could avail nothing. Means to let none of the old companies go until the place is better fortified, or the enemy weaker and farther off. Anyone who feels capable of defending the place with less than nine companies, is welcome to the task, and Conway will readily serve as a private captain under him.
Need of present supply of victuals, match, working tools, wheelbarrows, etc. His expenses in sending to Holland and Zeeland for supply. Not enough match to resist an attempt by the enemy, and none can be obtained; nor victuals for four days. Only one captain present for the nine old companies: some of the lieutenants also absent. In a fight " a chief commander cannot be in all places at once, and common soldiers will require chief officers to direct them and encourage them."
The King's great preparations to come against England again. The Duke is to have 40,000 ready here. There will be 500 sail ready. They expect him to come on in four months' time.
This place much decayed owing to the water, since he last wrote. "The earth is such that, wanting wood, all works in the day falls in the night."—Ostend, 21 December, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Seal. 3 pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 103.]
Dec. 21. G. Gilpin to Walsingham.
Little prospect of settlement with Schenck and the others. He is at Sgravenweert, waiting for Count Moeurs to bring forces and provisions for Berck and the frontiers of Gelderland. The enemy took Wachtendoncq 'by surrendry.' The inconveniences and delays of " the diffused course in government " in these countries. Insufficient forces in Gelderland, and ill provided: the Council, to supply their wants, has to waste time in asking the States General and the States of Holland for authority to do so.
Sir John Norrys will report his own proceedings. Most people think men should be sent hither rather than drawn hence. "Besides, if the payments be not provided for her Majesty's men but by the weekly lendings, it will not be possible to employ any of them abroad in any service, for the want would be the hindrance. And to look for any relief or help of the States, or in any towns, is vain: they will not disburse one penny for man or horse."
Discontentment of the Amptman of Tiel, since the fort where his son commanded was taken. There is said to be free recourse and passage between Nimmeghen and Tiel, the burghers of both sides "trading like friends together." The Amptman offers rewards for any of Delfte, etc., who are brought to him. He may be a bad neighbour to Holland, especially if this frost lasts. Berck is not provisioned for a month, the soldiers having used up the provisions for want of pay. If it were lost, Arnham would soon follow. Some think that the enemy, knowing the state of those places, will leave them behind him and approach nearer Vytrecht and into Holland, "for this weather will serve him everywhere instead of bridges." The towns, thus isolated, would soon yield. Moreover, the soldiers on the frontiers "are either upon no repartition of any province or else upon theirs that are scant able to pay them": the enemy's advance would hinder the contributions of the country on which the troops are maintained. No fresh news of Freeselande, but it is feared it will not be free from danger. Bergues and Tertole also in danger. Two of the Council appointed to assist Count Moeurs have departed with him: they will probably take money for Schenck's men at Sgravenweerdt.
"Nothing appeareth yet of the General States (who assemble daily) their doings. The Count Maurice beginneth to recover. The Admiral Duyvenvoert is returned out of Eastland from the Count Hohenlo, who he left at Rostock ready to depart towards Denmark the 21st of November last, stilo antiquo; having, as is given forth, done many good offices for this country with divers princes of Germany, where he wanted no words—Almayne entertainment—but deeds will fall out cold. The States have appointed to make a general muster of all the English companies, meaning that there should remain here 3000 footmen complete and 400 horse, and Sir John Norris to have the rest, which they think will be few. They long for Mr. Bodlieth's coming in hope that out [of] Flussinghe and the Briele shall be drawn the companies that are above the limited number, and that they shall have restitution of their money prested to the garrison of the Briele, and the said prests to cease."—The Haghe, 21 December, 1588, stil. an.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal of arms. 12/3 pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 105.]
[Dec. 22.] The Queen to Lord Willoughby. (fn. 1)
The States General having agreed that 600 horsemen and 2000 footmen, from the forces in her pay in the Low Countries according to the Contract, may go on this voyage with Sir John Norrys and Sir Francis Drake, if her Majesty consents; and having also offered to supply their places with new levies at their own charges, if any necessity arise; forasmuch as the speedy setting forth of that voyage is necessary to prevent the enemy's enterprises, her Majesty assents to these forces accompanying Norrys and Drake, the rather as she hears that the horse-bands are so decayed that reinforcements would have been needed for them. Moreover, the 2000 foot can be made up without greatly disfurnishing any place, seeing that Ostend (which the States will not repair) is to be abandoned, where there are nine companies which, with four more joined to them, will serve the turn.
Willoughby, upon notice given by Sir Edward Norrys of the time and place of embarkation, shall give present order for the troops to repair thither. The Privy Council will name to him the bands to be employed in this service. He shall do all in his power to further the voyage.
["Clause added to the letter."] Thanks him for his care and diligence to advance this service. Excuses the disorderliness of this letter, " as setting the cart before the horse." He shall give the States to understand that her Majesty, tendering their conservation, would never have withdrawn any of her forces agreed upon in the Contract unless they had accorded it and assured her that they would supply the numbers at their own charges in case of necessity.
Copy. Endd. with date and note of contents. 1½ pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 113.]
Minute, slightly corrected, of the above letter, the clause added being on a separate sheet.
Endd. with date. 3½ pp. [Holland XXIX. ff. 109, 111.]
Another minute of the above, with one erasure, and without the added clause.
Endd. with date and note of contents and note of the added clause. 2¼ pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 115.]
Dec. 22. Sir Thomas Morgan to Walsingham.
Kept here one company (Sir William Russell's) of those which the Lord General called for from this garrison. Some told the Lord General that Morgan would send no companies, whereupon he went to the States in great choler to have Morgan disarmed. However, Morgan sent away all the companies (except that one) with more expedition than was looked for, together with certain prisoners by whom he might have worked some good practice against Callingtolt. Continual practices to set the Lord General and Morgan at variance.
Sir Edmund Udall's false reports that Morgan said that he (Udall) is in disgrace with Walsingham. Morgan actually complained that he and others took small notice of his honour's letters. Thereupon Sir William Drurie, Udall, and others, came to the Haghe, thinking there in the General's house to disgrace him, but "they were somewhat too young" to perform their purpose. Udall should be grateful for Morgan's favour during his imprisonment. Morgan's patience under these many injuries.
The enemy means to renew the attack on England as soon as possible.
Desires favour for the bearer, William Morgan, "a very sufficient soldier," who has a bill to the Treasurer for some money.
Has sent his honour a goshawk, sometime Count Mannsfelde's.— Berges, 22 December, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal. 1¾ pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 107.]
Dec. 23./Jan. 2. Philip Brym to Caron.
Fears his former letters have been intercepted. Parma's agents buy naval stores here, some of it sent from Amsterdam. Simon Suwers, a rich Portuguese merchant, arms flyboats. Corn ships and warships in the river. Her Majesty should write urging the magistrates of this town to prevent such traffic with Spain and Dunkirk, as they promised Caron to do when he was here on his way back from Denmark. Little news.—Hamburg, 2 January, 1589.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Seal. Dutch, with incomplete French translation in margin. 1½ pp. [Hamburg and Hanse Towns III. 18.]
Dec. 23. The Privy Council to Lord Willoughby. (fn. 2)
That the 6 companies of horse and 13 of foot, named in the enclosed schedule, be put in readiness to be embarked at the time and place which Sir Edward Norreys shall specify. As Sir Thomas Knowles' company is wholly broken and others are rather weak, the other five captains shall bring but 50 lances apiece. As Captain Prosser is sorely wounded, some other of the old companies shall come in his stead. Letters have been sent to the governors of the cautionary towns for the 4 bands which are to be drawn thence, 3 from Flushing, 1 from Bryll.
Minute. Endd. with date. 2 pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 119.]
Schedule of horse and footbands to be delivered to Sir Edward Norrys to serve under Sir John Norrys.
Horsebands: Sir Robert Sydney, Sir John Borrough, Captains Blonte, Matthew Morgan, Shurley, Thomas Knollys.
Footbands: Bergen: Sir Edmund Udall, Sir Thomas Baskervile, Sir John Scott, Captains Powell and Barker. Ostende: Sir John Conway, Sir Charles Blonte, Sir Edward Norrys, Captains Anthony Winkefeild, Sotherman (vice Prosser). Bryll: Captain Brytt. Vlishinge: Captains Richard Winkefeild, Hinder, Fulford. Willoughby may substitute others for any who object to serving under Sir J. Norrys.
Endd. with note of contents, and 23 December, 1588. 1 p. [Holland XXIX. f. 121.]
Dec. 23./Jan. 2. Jacobus Basilius, the elder, minister of the gospel, to Adrian Vasseur, Sir William Russell's secretary.
Has received his letter and cannot help him "to blind and deceive by lies and a false letter her Majesty of England and our valiant governor Sir Thomas Morgan." His profession does not fit him to meddle with the appointment of governors but to teach the truth and deceive no man. Advises Vasseur to renounce such baseness and practices and think on concord and obedience. —Berghen-op-Zoom, 2 January, '89.
Translation. The original signed and add. Endd. ¾ p. [Holland XXIX. f. 123.]
[Dec. 24.] The Privy Council to Sir William Russell: and to Lord Burgh. (fn. 3)
Commanding him, upon notice given by Sir Edward Norrys of the place and time, to send the footbands of Capts. Richard Wingfild, Hynder, and Fullford, to serve with Sir John Norrys and Sir Francis Drake.
The like letter to Lord Burgh, for Capt. Brett's company.
Copy. Endd. with date. ½ p. [Holland XXIX. f. 127.]
Dec. 25./Jan. 4. The Duke of Parma to the King of Spain.
Sends this by a French gentleman, who brought him a letter, dated December 24, from the Duke of Aumalle and news of the Duke of Guise's death and the imprisonment of the Cardinals of Bourbon and Guise and other gentlemen, at Blois on the 23rd. His regret at this alteration, which will ruin the League, free the King of France from trouble, and encourage him to profit by the King of Spain's war with England and these countries. Received next day another letter from the Duke of Aumalle and two from Don Bernardino of the 23rd and 25th, with news of the Cardinal of Guise's death.
He that is come from the Duke of Aumalle, desired to have horsemen and footmen posted upon the frontiers or beyond, to encourage those towns of Picardy, and Paris in particular: and other 22. However, he considered that there would be more service done in making haste to dispatch the three regiments of lansknechts, and those of Lorraine, now re-forming and eager for the service. For this Parma offered him all the 22 (fn. 4) that were in his hands. And because the rest of the 50,000 crowns which was due to Mucio for the 3rd of September last past had not been delivered, he has used diligence therein and he has advertised the said gentleman of it, to the end they may help themselves with it although it be but little. Animated and counselled him all that he could. Sends the gentleman to learn his Majesty's resolution with regard to their affairs. Will do all he can to gather some good sum of money, of the which the Dukes of Mayenne and Aumalle may reap some profit. This will make them feel that aid is coming and perhaps even a commission from his Majesty to go forward herein as is needful.
At the same time sent Gabriel de Allegria, Juan Baptista de Tassis' secretary, who knows the secret of this design, to Lyons to discover the Duke of Mayenne's resolution and inform him of that of Aumalle. The Catholic party and the union of the towns likely to need assistance.
La Planche has come hither, being sent to Count Charles of Mansfelt by Bazonpierre and Menevilla, who were the two veriest friends that Guise had, and who were amongst those that escaped from Blois to Paris. He brings news of the alteration of the city of Paris, how they have declared Mayenne to be their governor, and in his absence the Duke of Aumalle; going about to apprehend the heretics and to make provision for war, to resist the King. These are the first furies, from which there is no certain conclusion to be drawn. Dares hardly believe this gentleman's promise that, if they aid the Catholic party, they would have the use of many important towns: many towns have refused to admit garrisons of either the King or the League, so they will hardly admit strangers. Mansfelt, as of himself, replied to la Planche that Parma would have to consult his master, and that in any case forces sent to aid the Union might well find their retreat cut off if they left those provinces unoccupied behind them. The gentleman finally was told that he must refer this question of assurances back to Bazompierre and Menevilla, and they must then send the Duke some definite offer. The Duke thinks his Majesty's service will best be advanced—or at least nothing will be lost—by sounding the opinions, humours, and means, that they have suggested.
The Duke of Lorraine sent his secretary Chastenay hither to see how they take this alteration and what help may be had for his defence, especially asking for the money due to him for levying reiters, and for what he has given in money to the men he maintained, namely, six thousand foot and 800 horse, mostly Italians and Albanians, who may if unsatisfied desert at this critical time to the King of France and leave him defenceless. As it is convenient to provide for the Duke in order to keep the passage open, has assured Chastenay he will send at once all the money he can, if they show the debt due by the King of Spain.
News in Mendoça's letter of 27th. He seems certain that the League will be overthrown, and also the union of the towns broken, and that the King of France will achieve his intent shortly. Notwithstanding, he says Mayenne and la Chastre are thought to be living and the 'gal' [cipher], although it was said that commandment was given to kill them.
Seeks to gather some good sum of money upon his credit to provide against this necessity. Hopes to find 60,000 crowns, which is but a little, as his Majesty may consider, for the importance of such a service, which will suffer seriously if he finds himself without funds not merely to meet extraordinary expenses but even for the daily upkeep of his army. Mariners will desert if not paid. Waste of time may cause a great overthrow.
Copy. Endd. "4 January, 1589, el Duca de Parma al Rey de Spana." Spanish. 3 pp., small writing. [Spain III. f. 34.]
Translation, often obscure, of the above.
Endd. with date. 4⅓ pp. [Flanders IV. f. 322.]
Dec. 25. Sir William Drury to Burghley.
Thanks him for his favour towards him, of which he has heard by Mr. Grinson. Refers all to this bearer, Sir Thomas Wilforthe. —Dordricke, 25 December, 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. 2/3 p. [Holland XXIX. f. 129.]
Dec. 26./Jan. 5. J. Wrothe to Walsingham.
Fears his letters from Constantinople have been intercepted, as has received none by the last three frigates. "These Signors" have news of the overthrow of Pherhad Bassa by the Persians, himself sorely wounded or slain, 3 basshas, 12 sandjacks, and 30,000 soldiers slain: the rest of the army shut up in a narrow place whence they can hardly escape. The Tartarians' assistance gave the Persians this victory. Sinane Bassha, formerly general in those parts and also head Vizier of the Porte, sent with reinforcements.
The spirits of the Italian Princes revived by the killing of the Duke of Guise. The greatness of the Spanish faction in France made them despair of resisting the Spaniards, but now they hope that the French King will destroy that faction and assist them to free Italy from the Spanish yoke.
Report that the French King, after Guise's death, summoned the Duke of Savoy to surrender the marquisate of Saluzzo to M. de Poignie within 24 hours of the King's messenger's arrival. The Duke delayed his answer and retained the messenger upon the pretext that he had discovered a plot to kill him upon his return journey. The gates of Turine were shut for two days, and meanwhile Count Martinengo was sent to Milan to consult with the King's Council there. The Duke sent his forces to Burge in Bressa, hearing that the French already were moving thither. "If that the King of Spain cannot find means to set again on foot in France the remnant of the Guises' faction, then, by all men's judgment, his affairs will be in a very evil estate, for if his son-in-law do not restore the marquisate, then he is sure to draw on his back the forces of France, the which, without the might of England, were always dreadful unto Spain." Nor can the Duke be assured by restoring it of healing the wound he has inflicted upon France. "No doubt Pope, Cardinals, blessings and cursings, and all other possible means shall be used for the reconciling of them, and it is probable that the King of France will now at the first show himself to be contented with reasonable conditions until such time as he hath set his kingdom in quietness." Sees not how the Duke can restore it, having seen how the French King "can rather dissemble than forget an injury." England may now attack Spain with less fear, and all will greatly blame her Majesty if, "having the balance in her hands, she do not reap great profit thereby."
"The King of Spain's son is reported to be evil disposed."— Venice, 5 January, 1589.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal. 1¼ pp. [Venice I. f. 62.]
Dec. 27. Buzanval to Burghley.
Is glad that the good state of affairs in France brings a truce to their usual importunities. Did not mention those of the governor of Boulogne for money, as saw small means to satisfy them: now he can address himself elsewhere. The change should also relieve Sedan and Jametz. Sends M. de Clermont's letter thereon. Amyens in Picardy likely to revolt owing to the imprisonment of their president who was at the Estates. La Chatte, governor of Dieppe, has broadcast throughout Normandy the King's declaration about the Duke of Guyse's death.—London, 27 December, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. French. 2/3 p. [France XVIII. 177.]
Dec. 27. James Digges to Burghley.
The "inextricable labyrinth" of the accounts for the year ending 11 Oct., 1588, due to the doubts and differences therein between her Majesty and the States. Need of a conference to settle these points: or else the Lord General should be instructed to give order as seems best for her Majesty's service, regardless of the Contract, so often broken by both parties. Had Mr. Bodiley "all perfections, and longer experience than Mr. Killegrewe," he could achieve little against "so many subtle, cunning, heads bent all to one purpose" of defrauding her Majesty of her disbursed treasure by continual delays and subtle shifts. They should be roundly dealt with by commissioners authorised to settle orders for future government. Gave Mr. Bodiley certain articles hereupon before he (Digges) came from England: sends his lordship in brief such points as are presently in dispute. He and his brother continually urged the States to appoint their commissaries to attend the general musters.
Will shortly wait upon him again concerning these matters and the 'cessing' of the checks.—Dort, 27 December, 1588, stylo veteri.
Signed. Add. Endd. 1¼ pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 131.]
Dec. 28. Lord Wyllughby to Burghley.
That Adrian Cornelius Roerom, captain of a company of burghers and agent of the magistrates of this town, may have licence to transport hither 200 lasts of grain. The island, and another near it, lost their crops owing to floods, and Skinke, by his sconce on the Ryne, stops the passage of all provision from those countries.—Dordrecht, 28 December, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. with note of contents. ¾ p. [Holland XXIX. f. 133.]
[Dec. 28.]/Jan. 7. A Letter from Madrid.
Has little news for his honour, for there is no further talk of setting out a new fleet this year, and the Court is quiet.
Don Diego Flores de Valdes (who advised the Duke of Medina Sidonia to leave Don Pedro Valdes to his fate in the Channel) has been imprisoned, and he and others will be put on trial. The Duke's leave to come to Court and kiss the King's hands deferred.
Fifty ships preparing to defend the coast against Drake. An island at the entrance to Corugna fortified, and ships concentrated behind it. It is said that the King and Court will go into Galicia in the spring.
The affair of Saluzzo. The Cardinal at Lisbon. The governor of Ceuta, in Africa on the Straits of Gibraltar, treats with the Sheriff about handing it over to the Queen of England and Don Antonio, a matter of evil consequence.—Madrid, 7 January, 1588.
Not signed or add. Endd. Italian. 1¼p. [Spain III. f. 36.]
Dec. 28./Jan. 7. Villiers to Walsingham.
Thanks him for his letters. There are no preparations in Spain which threaten any danger for next year.
As he lost two brothers in the St. Bartholomew massacre, he rejoices to see God's vengeance. The Prince of Parma received the news from France at about the same time as it reached England. Hears that the Cardinal of Guise, the Archbishop of Lyons, the Bishop of Amiens, the President de Neulli, and the prévot des marchands, have also been strangled. His first advertisement of the Queen Mother's death was by Walsingham's letters. Hears that the King is assured of Lyons and Orléans, and that the League loses ground in Picardy. If so, Paris can not hold out for very long. But for the quarrel with the Duke of Savoy, who has entered Dauphiné, he fears that the King might now issue a declaration against the religion. The King told the governor of the citadel of Mers to seize Montessin, which had intelligence with the League. The English ambassador and his men should be warned to show neither joy nor sorrow for the Queen Mother's death, and should be careful how they appear to take the Duke of Guise's death, for the French court is apt to suspect that the English rejoice at the confusion of France rather than at the punishment of an evil-doer. It would be better not to offer the King assistance, but to wait for him to ask for it. The Italian powers, who dislike the Duke of Savoy's pretensions, will probably urge the King to adopt a vigorous course. The defeat of the Spanish navy probably encouraged him, though it is possible he may seek an arrangement with Spain, which the Pope will further.—Middelburg, 7 January, 1589, stilo novo.
Holograph. Add. Endd. French. 2 pp. small writing. [Holland XXIX. f. 135.]
Dec. 29./Jan. 8. Richard Tomson to Walsingham.
Is still at Ordam fort and has little chance to write. Has been here since October 27, n.s. Had passport of the governor, Capt. la Burlote, for his access and return. Wrote to the Duke of Parma, who was then before Berghen, but had no answer until November 11, when the Duke sent Anthony Bassetes, Secretary Granier's clerk, from Andwerpe to confer with him. Bassetes returned to Brussels with the Council's propositions, which Tomson gave him. Answer came from him on November 27: copy thereof enclosed, dated 17th. The governor persuaded him to wait three or four days for further answer from the Duke "and so have I been ever since prolonged from day to day, and cannot get leave to depart, neither yet to write or send my servant into Zeeland." Is given fair words, but no deeds follow. "The cause I cannot conjecture, unless the Duke attend his resolution out of Spain from the King," as Bassett's answer and Granier's letter to M. Mondragon of December 2, seem to indicate. Encloses copy of Granier's letter, delivered to him 15 days ago to appease his importunity. Needs money, being already indebted 10l. sterling, or more. Hears no news but what the governor speaks of, "who, being of Lorraine, relieth much upon the D[uke] of Guise. He telleth of a great army departing from England, whereof one Don Anto. is general and that he hath correspondence with the Portingalles."—Ordam, 29 December, 1588, new date.
Postscript. "Referred until the 8th January, new style." On January 2, Don Alonso Martinez de Lerma came with commission from the Duke to treat and to go to England about the prisoners both there and in Ireland, if he may have passport. They agreed on all points except that against transporting the prisoners to these countries. Has no power to yield therein. Promised to write for passport if he might send his servant for it. They still delay to answer hereon. Desires to return with Lerma (if the passport be granted), so as to keep as close a watch upon him as these people keep over himself.
Holograph. Add. Endd. Sealpp. [Flanders IV. f. 321.]
Dec. 29. Sir Thomas Morgan to Walsingham.
The regiments of which he has previously written certainly go to Spain, and there is a secret speech that the Prince himself will go. The forces which were besieging Wachington have been drawn down into Brabant and the land of Lake.
Desires that his nephew, Captain Matthew Morgan, may stay here with him, either with his troop of horse or 200 foot.—Berges, 29 December, 1588.
Signed. Add. Endd. Seal. ½p. [Holland XXIX. f. 137.]
Dec. 30. The Queen to Lord Willoughby.
Du Vocht lately urged her Majesty, on behalf of the States General, to instruct Willoughby to cause the town of Gertruidenbergh to be delivered into Count Moryce's hands, as was promised in the secret articles passed between Willoughby and the States: or else that some of the bands in her Majesty's pay be placed in the town, for its better assurance. Willoughby shall do his utmost to procure that some of the said bands may be admitted and those who are doubtful and disordered put out.
The States also complain that the contribution payable by Langstrade in Brabant, as well as the ordinary taxes and excises paid in the said town, have been appropriated, contrary to the general order laid down, by Sir John Wingfield, governor of Geertruidenbergh, in a far larger proportion than belongs to him. He claims the same entertainment as Count Hollock received, but the States say that the Count's entertainment was given to him as lieutenant-governor of Holland and Zeeland, not as governor of that town. Willoughby to take present order to satisfy the States herein.
The States further complain of outrages committed upon certain of their boats passing with licence up the Mase, the garrison pretending that they carry victuals to the enemy: yet those who seized the vessels sold the victuals to the enemy, with their governor's consent. If this be true, Wingfield deserves to be removed and severely punished. Willoughby, "all partiality of alliance laid aside," is to examine the matter and certify her Majesty of its truth, so that she may take order therein.
As the States suspect that Willoughby and, more particularly, Wingfield underhand encourage the garrison's obstinate refusal to obey them or Count Moryce, her Majesty would have Willoughby deal so effectually in this cause as to reveal the baselessness of the suspicion.
As they seem to like well that some English companies should be placed in the town, Willoughby shall seek to effect the same. This bearer ("a gentleman of whom we have great good liking both for valour and skill") will relate to him her Majesty's views on the course most likely to achieve this result.
Copy. Endd. with date. 2 pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 143.]
Minute of the above; corrected by Walsingham, in whose hand is the last paragraph but one; as also an addition, underlined as if for deletion, to the preceding paragraph, to the effect that if Wingfield is found innocent, the States General or the Council of State should join their certifications to Willoughby's, for her Majesty's better satisfaction.
Endd. with date. 52/3 pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 139.]
Dec. 30. Lord Wyllughby to Walsingham. (fn. 5)
Has not heard whether his honour has received the letters intercepted by those of Gertruinbergh, including one of Count Charles Mansfelt's in cipher, which he sent to him. Having no special occasion, has not troubled him with letters since Berghes. Refers all to this bearer, whose going over and "the news I received of your favour and honour done to my children, hath made me bold to break silence with rendering you many thanks . . ."—Myddleburgh, 30 December.
Postscript. Will willingly pleasure him in the matter of Mendoza and Ortell, prisoners, though he has not yet heard thereof from Sir William Russell, to whom Walsingham wrote. Understands the respect is very honourable "for Captain Anthony Sherley: in whose behalf how I have proceeded, this bearer, Sir Thomas Wilford his cousin, can inform you."
Holograph. Add. Endd. 1 p. [Holland XXIX. f. 147.]
Dec. 30. Resolution of the council of Utrecht that Colonel Clarehage, after paying his expenses and swearing not to molest the town on account of his imprisonment, may withdraw to the ambassador Norits or her Majesty of England: also a letter shall be written to Norits that, though Claerhage has been accused of divers matters, nevertheless, to satisfy her Majesty, they are sending him to his lordship.
Copy also granted to the Colonel.—30 December, 1588.
Copy. Endd. French. ½p. [Holland XXIX. f. 149.]
Dec. 30./Jan. 9. News from Calais.
Sir William Standlaye at Andwarp, Jan. 1 and 2, n.s.: went to Brussels but has returned to be paid on Jan. 14, n.s., and is still there. Was promised two months' pay through the Spanish and Portingalls merchants there, three parts in cloth at an extreme price, and one part in money. Dispute hereon. The Prince bargained with the merchants when no others would deal. They are to be repaid in Spain, for there is no money here. Standlaye's regiment about Dismewt and Owdenert, and towards Brudges and Custrick, spoiling the country. The peasants often kill some of them. They are allowed in no walled town. At Andwarp and generally Spanish reals are only accepted in payment when they are of full weight, of which few are to be found. Merchants and poor people greatly aggrieved, but the richer sort send "the same for England, France and Zeeland, where their money be passable after 33s. 4d. the pound exchange."
The King of Poland reported dead. The [late] King of Denmark's daughter said to be gone for Scotland and married to the King.
A doubtful report that those of Peronne have offered to admit a garrison from the Duke of Parma. Truce proclaimed in Antwerp between the King of Spain and Queen Mother, who is said to have died on the 1st, n.s., at Bloyse, which makes people think that the truce is really with the King, for whom Cambray now is held.
Report that Colonel Noris asked the States for 100 warships for Portingall, but got only 30, which go shortly. Also that the States refused his demand for the payment of the Bergen and Ostend garrisons and removal of the camp, so that the soldiers now revolt for want.
The Duke of Parma said to be recalled to command a new fleet to be sent against England this year. A Cardinal of Portingall to come in his place. This thought unlikely.
The spy taken to Dunkirk proved to be a warship of Inquisen. Only five warships able to put to sea at Dunkirk. "They have taken many this year past, of which many lay ready to put out when the fleet was here appointed in warlike sort . . . And others gone for Spain, sold to those of Andwerp, and 'coloured' by English and Calais men. Yet is there more there to be sold or put to sea if they had mariners, by [Qy. but ?] the adventurers took them. But for any other service, there is no speaking; only John Meas and Boddenham, with three more by those, put them to sea." Boddenham urges the Duke to tax Andwarpe, etc., to furnish the captured ships to resist the Queen's ships and convoy those going with corn to Spain. The Duke collects mariners to carry the galleon at Newhaven to Spain.—D. Vassure.
Calais, 9 Jan., 1589. Rouen, Paris, Amiens, and Abvill, hold for the Roman church, but not as yet for any person. Divers gentlemen on the French frontiers retired to St. Omers and elsewhere in Artois, uncertain what to do.
Encloses copy of a letter, sent by Kirkhame, from M. Colomby to their college, to show his honour what they write from Mountril. Kirkhame also writes that the bands of ordonnance of Artois (now very poor) are going to France to aid the League. Also that Epernon has gone to raise large forces for the King in Germany.—W. Kirkham.
Calais, 9 Jan., 1588. Reports "by French mariners hurt and set on shore out of Cornelis Peterson, a ship coloured by this town and [with] passport both of the Lord Admiral and the States, come from Lisbon . . . and taken by those of Flushing for that she shot at them first."
Corn very dear in Spain. Lisbon keeps all laden for itself. Corn very scarce in the isles Tersearous: the captain [of the port ?] killed by the people for allowing a ship to leave for Lisbon. No corn ships stayed and no 'armado' preparing. Only heard of [MS. torn] of the last 'armado' being returned, and neither men or ships will be serviceable for a long time. They confirm the disgrace of the Duke de Midina and the returned captains. The Duke of Parma openly blamed as a traitor.
"The man-of-war wherein the friar is, with three French, be gone hence. Yet remains three of Dunkirk, one Scot, one of this town, and one flyboat coloured by Martin Cowster," all laden with wheat and Dansq rye for Spain. Has sent [word] thereof to the Admiral.
Endd. 3 pp. [Newsletters IX. f. 91.]
Dec. 31. Instructions for Jacques de Boustreten, governor of Morgap, sent by the town of Berne to the French King.
To inform his Majesty that, despite the treaty of 1564 and the perpetual peace of 1582, the Duke of Savoy, having seized the marquisate of Saluzzo, again threatens to invade that part of Savoy conquered by the Bernese in 1536. A plot among the garrisons discovered. A general assembly of the Cantons meets to discuss the matter at Baden on January 18: they desire his Majesty's aid and counsel before that date. De Boustreten to memorise these instructions, lest he should be intercepted with such a paper about him. To take note of the position of affairs in France.—Last of December, o.s.
Copy. Endd. French. 3 pp. [France XVIII. 178.]
Dec. 31. Thomas Bodley to Walsingham.
Received yesternight his letters of 19th and 21st, together with one from her Majesty to the Count de Meurs, who has gone towards Arnham with 1000 footmen and 600 horse. Sent a copy on to the Count and delivered the letter to the Countess, his wife. Has written to the Count, reminding him of his promise of [the prisoners'] release if innocent. Wrote also to the chief magistrate and burgomasters. Has also written to Deventer himself, to Clarhaghe, to those of Leiden, to Aisma and to Schincke, asking how he may best assist them. There is an uncredited report that Schincke has yielded his fort to the Duke of Cleve and become his Marshal, for 40,000 dallers and three months' pay for his men.
Mr. Killigrew thinks that the States will dislike her Majesty's request that Mr. Gilpin should assist Bodley in the Council as interpreter. They will feel that it is an innovation and they do not greatly affect Gilpin. After conference together, Killigrew and Gilpin advised him to stay his (Bodley's) presentation to the Council till to-day. Must omit many things, for upon this his first arrival he is encumbered "with heaps of information and business." Thanks him for the "comfortable news out of France." Finds, contrary to expectation, this town very barren of foreign news: "and yet the chiefest persons very inquisitive," so that it would advance the service if Walsingham would get someone to write to Bodley of any occurrences of consequence. News from Andwerp of the King of Poland's death by poison, and that the Duke of Parma prepares to march towards Paris to succour the Leaguers.—The Haghe, 31 Dec., 1588.
Holograph. Add. Endd. with note of contents. 1½ pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 152.]
[Early in Dec.] [Henry Ogilvie], Laird of Powrie, to Walsingham.
"It will pleiss zowir h[onour] to onderstand yt being arrywitt heir ye 11 of yis moneth of December, stilo novo, whair I did speik with my lord ambassador, I howpitt till haif fownde sume wreits befoir me frome his Maiestie, but yaer is nevver ane schiepe cwme owt of Scotlande this twa moneth by past, swayt I luik daelye for letters, qlk being resawitt your honoer sal wnderstande of sik things ass sall be reqwisite. I haif lernit of my lord yt, be ane letter cwm from Spaene to maister James Tyrie that was detit the tente of December, that of ye King of Spaenyie his aermie the twa pairts wass arrywit at sindrie paerts in Spaen and of the wyer thride pairte sum waer in Yrlande, sum at the yls Ayores, and swm wpone the north coiste of Scotlande. And yt alwayse in place of yeis he haes awgmentit his aermie alraedie with fiftie twa sael yt hawine cwme from Florence and Geins [Genoa] war in reddenes immediatlie efter ye paerting of the aermie. And yt ye towns of Spaene haes taen all the soeldiowrs of his hande in garnisone, to defraey thaem in maet and cloith this winter and to furnis the hoil naewie of wiwers ['vivres']; besyds yt the claergie of Italie and Espaene haes fwrnisitt him of sax millione of gowlde. Thaer is nothing trwbills yem so mwiche ass the deith of thaer maen retwrnit with the dewik, qlk haes bein graett and continewis ass zeitt. Thaer expeditione is to be in Jwly or Awgwst at the farrest. The speciall occatione of ye iwill swcces of yis his aermie is impwit to the Prince of Parme, notwtstandine yt the King of Spaen is constraenit to misknaw the samming. The trewith is, sua far ass I can lerne of ane wyer qwha haes swffisient intelligence, is yt ye hoill nwmber of the scheipis yeit arrywit in Spaen is thrie scoir fowr sael. Thaer is sume to be sent to deill wt the King of Scotlande in yis maen tym, and sume silwer to be sente in alswa, bot ze sall be adwertisitt of yt in dew tyme and all wyer sik maeters as maey preiwge yowr aesteit and qwoyetnes."
"The Dewik of Sawoy haes taen ane towne of laeitt in Prowance callitt [blank in MS.], and is presentlie assiegen ane wyer. The K[ing] of Spaen haess sendt him downe fowr thowsanst horsmaen and 12 thowsand fwitmaen. The K[ing] of France and his aesteitts haes bein in werrie harde terms, bot for ye present the aesteitts haes prewaelitt, for his hoill financiss is retranschitt to mak ye waer wt, only except fywe hwnderitt thowsande crowns resserwitt to his owine dispositione for his 'menew plaesirs.' I am to be acqwentit and recommenditt to Dome Bernardino de Mandossa ane of yis fowr or fywe days, at qwhaitt tyme ze sall be sufficientlie aeqenttit of al thaer desins and attenps. I persaif yt the Maister of Gray, suppois yt he pleins of his onhonest handling be Inglande, zeitt, not being lykit of heir, he is bent ass I parsaif to doe yowr contrie pleswr, and yt moir for his particwlar with the Erle of Hwntlei and for the parrel the King his maister (fn. 6) stands in to his wraeik (being socht direclie and my lord Clowde to be maed King, thaer tribwtaer, in his plaece), moir yan for aemy goodwill he beir, aemy of zow. His hoill delinge is wt the ambassador of Spaen, bot ass I sall be maist caerfwll to mak yow foirsein of qwhaitswmewer he or ony wther knaws of heir, so will I expectat yt the samme sall be acknawlegit be hir Maiestie be yowr moyen, and yt only ass I sall desrwer. Sua lewing to trwbill zowr h[onour] wt ony farder for ye present," etc.—Paris, — December, 1588 stilo novo.
Signed 876H. Add. Endd. From the L. of Pory. Seal. The passages in italics in cipher. 1¼ pp. [France XVIII. 179.]
A very full abstract of the above, in Wilkes' hand, without the date or signature, and headed 'Advertisements from Paris.'
pp. [Newsletters IX. f. 87.]
[Dec. ?] Extract of a remonstrance from the States General's agents to Her Majesty.
As regards Col. Scheink's complaints, the States have shown him all honour and assisted him so far as their means would allow. The States of Holland, soon after his return from England, gave him, besides other satisfaction, 14,000 florins for the relief of Bon and necessary services in Gelderland, and this in addition to what the Council of State gave him on behalf of the States General.
Not dated or endd. French. ½ p. [Holland XXIX. f. 33.]
[Dec.] "The contents of the States' resolution touching this journey into Spain."
"They agree that 600 horse of her Majesty's pay shall be employed therein, and their pay for five months."
That 2000 of her Majesty's foot, with their pay and lendings for the same time, shall be so employed.
They will send ten companies at their own charges, giving them money to strengthen and equip themselves.
They will send five warships at their own charges, with men and victuals for that time.
"They are contented we shall have five ships of 550 tons apiece, named furlangers, and authority to press men; and to have victuals and munition to furnish them according to that rate that I have set down unto them, paying neither impost nor excise."
He may press men, ships, victuals, munition, free from all excise or other charges.
Endd. December, 1588. and with note of contents. ½ p. [Holland XXIX. f. 69.]
[Dec.] Notes to the memorial of the Council of State to Sir John Norrys.
1. Think it reasonable that her Majesty's succours be kept complete, and that captains should not be absent without good cause and the Lieutenant-General's consent. Nevertheless the States have never produced any proof of the defect in the numbers of which they complain.
2. As was before answered, better payment of the troops is hardly possible, considering her Majesty's other excessive charges.
3. Order shall be given to redress the disorders of the horsemen.
4. They ask that payments to her Majesty's troops be made with the knowledge of the Council of Estate and in the presence of the States' deputies, which they pretend has not been done hitherto. "We are of opinion that the musters ought to be made by the commissaries of her Majesty and of the States jointly and that the payments ought to be made with the knowledge of the commissaries of the Estates, as is contained in the second article of the first treaty." But there is a great controversy between the States and Mr. Digges, the general muster-master, on these two points: (1) they would have every band number 150 heads besides officers, whereas Mr. Digges' roll contains but 144 with officers; (2) Mr. Digges maintained that the monthly payment (30 days) for a company of 150 came to 173l. 5s. sterling, or 1732 florins 10 sous, Flemish, whereas the Treaty seemed to allow but 170l. sterling. On (1), Mr. Digges alleged rates of payment laid down by the Privy Council and allowed of by an act of Council of 14 May, 1586, at Utrecht. It was also alleged that her Majesty paid her horsebands at a lower rate than the States paid theirs, so that they saved more thereby than they lost by the increased payment of the footbands. If the States were not content, then there was no reason why they should be served with lances: the Treaty speaks only of horse. The Earl of Leicester, finding the States' horsemen relied chiefly upon shot, converted all her Majesty's 1000 horse to lances and increased the footbands' monthly pay some 3l. 10s. sterling, reducing the lances' monthly pay to some 4 or 500 florins below the States' rate, "which we think he might do by the act of the declaration of the government which they gave unto him."
"Touching the rolls and accounts, we found them willing to allow of all the accounts, from the beginning until 12 Oct., 1585. From the said day of October until September, 1586, it was desired that there might be a conference for the liquidation of the musters and accounts; which was committed unto Mr. Digges, and to one van der Dous, appointed by the States General. From September forward there was an order taken in Council for the taking of the musters by nine several deputies of Mr. Digges, muster-master-general, and nine several commissaries of the States, according to the places of their several garrisons. The same were printed both in English, French, and 'Dutch.' Much time was spent thereabout, and until these orders were taken we could not learn of any forwardness in the States to have any musters taken at all," despite sundry requests by Mr. Digges, "both before our coming, as the Lord Buckhurst and Mr. Wilkes can (as he said) testify, and we know to be true."
Endd. by Burghley with date. 3 pp. [Holland XXIX. f. 154.]
[Dec. ?] Occurrents.
Ordnance sent from Ghent to Dunkirk for Spain.
Sir W. Stanley's regiment and others are also going to Dunkirk, where ships are preparing to carry them to Spain or Ireland, or to Ostende where the sea has made large breaches.
The Duke of Parma prepares again for Zeeland: refreshes his forces by putting them in garrison in his best towns.
Antwerpe burghers disarmed for reluctance to admit garrison.
The nobles who came from Spain and Italy against England are going back.
The Duke has orders to send 10 regiments to Spain: promised they should be there by May 1.
Sir John Norris expected: has dispatched his business with the States, who grant him 10 great ships, 2000 musketeers, and 10,000l.
In Walsingham's hand. Endd. ¾ p. [Newsletters I. f. 151.]
Dec. "An extract of Mr. Harborne's journey from Constantinople."
Left on August 3, with suite of 30 persons. Passed through Thrace, Rumania, and Wallachia. Reached Moldavia on September 4; Prince Peter, a Greek in profession, entertained him very courteously by the Grand Signor's order. Negotiated an agreement that her Majesty's subjects trafficking there should pay only 3%, whereas others, and his own subjects, pay 12%. Thence he went to Poland. Audience on 27th with the High Chancellor who told him secretly all their intelligences, and wrote to her Majesty. Was welcomed at Melvyn [Qy. Elbing?] on October 12 by the Senate who seem devoted to her Majesty, to whom they sent letters. Was courteously received at Danswicke on the 27th by a 'buroughmaster,' two senators, and their secretary. Thence through Pomerland to Statyn. The Duke absent. Thence through Rostacke to Wistmore. Arrived at Lubicke late at night and left early, so was not visited. Received by a 'buroughmaster' and the secretary at Hambrough, November 19, and at Stoade, December 9. Was well entertained everywhere and presented with lengthy congratulations to her Majesty upon her victory over the Spaniards, and with offers to serve her. The Danswikers, however, exacted custom upon the goods of merchants in his company, "which no other, either infidels or Christians, on the way ever demanded." English residents tell him that the Hanse towns, especially Danswicke, Lubicke, and Hambrough, have sent to Spain large quantities of corn, cables, ropes, and munitions of war. So their courtesy was probably due rather to fear than to goodwill, except in the cases of Melvyn and Stoad.
Endd. as above, and December, 1588. 1 p. [Turkey I. 57.]
[1588.] Genealogical table of the King and Queen of Denmark, with their children.
Frederic II: born at Hadersleben, 30 June, 1534: crowned, 1559: died, 4 April, 1588.
Sophie, daughter of Ulrich, Duke of Mecklenburg: born, 1557: married, 20 July, 1572: crowned queen, July 21.
Their children:
Elizabeth: born at Colding, Jutland, 25 August, 1573.
Anna: born at Sunderburg, 12 Oct., 1574.
Christian Frederic: born at Fridrichburg, 12 April, 1577.
Ulric: born, 30 Dec., 1578.
Augusta: born, 8 April, 1580.
Hedwig: born, 5 August, 1581.
Joannes: born, 26 July, 1583.
Endd. Latin. ½ p. [Denmark I. f. 275.]


  • 1. Extract in Bertie, Five Generations of a Loyal House, pp. 235–6.
  • 2. Printed in Dasent: Acts of the Privy Council, xvi. 409–10.
  • 3. Printed in Dasent, Acts of the Privy Council, xvi. 410–1, where the letter to Lord Burgh is given in full, and that to Russell abbreviated.
  • 4. Added in the translation:—"meaning double pistolets."
  • 5. Extract in Bertie, Five Generations of a Loyal House, p. 236.
  • 6. The cipher (in which m=t and t=m) reads 'taister.'