Simancas: January 1565

Calendar of State Papers, Spain (Simancas), Volume 1, 1558-1567. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1892.

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, 'Simancas: January 1565', in Calendar of State Papers, Spain (Simancas), Volume 1, 1558-1567, (London, 1892) pp. 400-404. British History Online [accessed 26 May 2024].

. "Simancas: January 1565", in Calendar of State Papers, Spain (Simancas), Volume 1, 1558-1567, (London, 1892) 400-404. British History Online, accessed May 26, 2024,

. "Simancas: January 1565", Calendar of State Papers, Spain (Simancas), Volume 1, 1558-1567, (London, 1892). 400-404. British History Online. Web. 26 May 2024,

January 1565

1565. 2 Jan. 282. The Same to the Same.
On the 18th and 23rd ultimo I wrote to your Majesty that this Queen had suffered from fever and had been very ill but was now recovered. I was with her on the 24th, and she complained of pains in the stomach and all over the body, and she has since been indisposed with a very bad catarrh with some fever. She is now better again and has come out into the presence chamber, but Leicester tells me she is very thin. The changes of weather have been such that it suddenly turned from heat to a cold so intense that the river here is frozen over and people walk upon it as they do the streets. Natives say they have never seen such a thing before, and it is very trying for the weak. It has found out the Queen, whose constitution cannot be very strong.—London, 2nd January 1565.
283. The Same to the Same.
Although I have written that this Queen has been ill with catarrh she has also had an attack of the pains in the head to which she is subject. They inform me that the physicians who attend her consider her constitution a weak and unhealthy one. It is true young people can get over anything, but your Majesty should note that she is not considered likely to have a long life.
The earl of Leicester is still in favour. He shows the same goodwill towards your Majesty's interests. I believe he desires to please everybody as he seems well disposed and has no inclination to do harm. The French Ambassador cultivates his friendship both in obedience to instructions from the King and because Leicester's father was attached to the French, and he also has a liking for them, although if he tells the truth his affection for and desire to serve your Majesty are much stronger. He was considered here more Catholic than Protestant, but recently he has done two things that make some people think he is not so. First, the Queen having ordered the image to be placed in her chapel he had it removed, and next, when the men they call ministers and ecclesiastics here were ordered to wear a proper dress in accordance with the ancient custom of the country and to put on a surplice during the service, the ministers complained to him saying that they wished to make Papists of them, and by his help the order lias been dropped, as have some other measures of amendment. The Queen, as usual, has a cross upon the altar. If what some people say is to be believed she is not comfortable with her Protestants nor with the doctrines of the other side either, and, in the meanwhile, provides no amendment and gives ground for the assertion that she is an atheist and Leicester as well. I ought not to presume to judge thus freely.
The king of France has gained little credit and few friends by his offer of the order of St. Michael to these people but, on the contrary, has turned such friends as he had into enemies. It has done Leicester more harm than good, as the jealousy of him has increased, and I understand that he knows it. He told me the other day that he was quite satisfied with his St. George. When I first arrived here I had imagined Secretary Cecil, judging by the accounts given me, to be very different from what I have found him in your Majesty's affairs. He is well disposed towards them, truthful, lucid, modest and just, and, although he is zealous in serving his Queen, which is one of his best traits, yet he is amenable to reason. He knows the French and, like an Englishman, is their enemy. He assures me on his oath, as I have already said, that the French have always made great efforts to attract to their country the Flanders trade, offering heavy security for its safety. With regard to his religion I say nothing except that I wish he were a Catholic, but to his credit must be placed the fact that he is straightforward in affairs and shows himself well affected towards your Majesty, for which I thank him, and, with fair words that pledge me to nothing, I let him know that your Majesty looks to him to dispose matters favourably as necessity may occur, for he alone it is who makes or mars business here.
I wrote to your Majesty that the earl of Bedford and the queen of Scotland's secretary named Lethington were going to have an interview with that queen after their conference at Berwick. Letters have now been received here saying that they were not going into Scotland, but that Lethington was still coming hither. I am informed that the queen of Scotland is pressing this Queen very hard to declare herself in the mitter of the succession, and it is thought that if she does not do so some movement will be made and that the queen of Scotland will be aided by the French.
It is understood here that the earl of Arundel's business is all ended in merrymakings although no decision has yet been actually adopted about him. I have been waiting some days for a Catholic who is very diligent in affairs here to give me a statement about the succession in case of the Queen's death. As he still delays I have read authorities on the subject and consulted learned persons and now enclose the statement of the matter as I understand it which I believe to be correct. I could send the whole descent but do not do so in order to avoid confusion.—London, 2nd January 1565.
Note in margin.—Statement not sent.
8 Jan. 284. The Same to the Same.
I wrote to your Majesty by way of Flanders that this queen had been unwell but had recovered, and that affairs here were as usual, except that great satisfaction existed at an arrangement having been made about trade with Flanders. I hear that the same pleasure exists there by a letter from the town of Antwerp which I have received. I have not yet received advice from the Duchess of Parma, but I have no doubt she will be equally pleased, as the settlement arrived at was exactly as she sent it, signed by herself without the change of a single word.
I have taken and am taking every possible step for the greater security of the sea, which is quite necessary, as there are still thieves about. As I have advised, some of the Queen's ships have sailed to capture them, and they have been proclaimed traitors. At the ports measures have been ordered to capture them, and ships are not allowed to leave without giving sureties, but withal, necessity and recklessuess make it hard to put an end to them, although some of them are in jail.
About 10 days since one of these pirates, called Cucon (Cook ?), robbed a Flemish ship bound to Portugal He came to Southampton to discharge what he had taken, and carried it secretly by night to a house he has in the country near there. The officers of the law were advised and took steps at once. The merchandise was captured, and some of the thieves, although the principal one escaped. Notice of the capture was given and the men who had been robbed arrived here three days ago, and will have their property restored. The thieves will be punished.
These fresh depredations gave me an opportunity for again pressing the matter here, whereupon they replied that they knew not what else they could do, but if I could suggest any other remedy besides those adopted, they would employ it. I believe they are in earnest.
They had arranged a joust of 12 a side for Twelfth Day, but it rained so heavily that the affair could not come off until the next day (yesterday), when the morning turned out bright and fine. When I was with the Queen a few days before she had asked me to come to the palace to see her feast, but I did not intend to go, the earl of Leicester having neglected to send me word of it again as he undertook to do. The day of the feast, however, the Queen sent word that I was to go, which I did, feeling sure that the French Ambassador would not be there, as I had sent word to him that the Queen desired my presence, as he usually does when he goes to the palace to avoid our being there together. I went early as they requested me, and Secretary Cecil and the Chamberlain put me in the gallery from which the Queen generally sees the feasts. There were three or four compartments divided by cloths, and they took me into one adjoining that of the Queen, and adorned in the same way as hers. Soon afterwards the Queen came and entered the compartment where I was, calling me to her. I was with her at the window until the entry and a good number of the jousters had run when she said she would be glad if I would go again into the compartment I was in before she came, as she wished to entertain the French Ambassador for a short time, he having come, and she did not wish us to be both there together, but would call me again. I went as desired, and after the Frenchman had been there a little while he went away and the Queen called me to her again. I was with her until the end of the joust when she went indoors to warm herself, taking me with her, and told ine that the French Ambassador had wished to come, but that she being a woman and not adroit enough to settle points of precedence, had not thought well to have us both in her presence at the same time. She then asked me to stay and sup with the earl of Leicester, so that I might see the whole of the entertainment, as she wished to rest for a short time. I therefore went with Leicester to his lodgings where the principal people of the court sat down to supper, and afterwards was taken to the presence chamber, and from there to the privy chamber, where I was with the Queen for a short time. About 8 o'clock she descended to the first hall, which had been prepared, and there after dancing for a while they had a tourney on foot, which lasted till about 11. The Queen then sent for the challengers and their opponents, and thanked them for what they had done, whereupon I left her in her apartments.
After I returned home I learnt that they had kept the French Ambassador waiting a good while in a corridor where those who came with me were assembled until the lists were opened, and he was admitted as I have related. He went away ill-pleased and showed it when he left. Those who saw him told me that he might have saved himself the pains of coming, as he had received advice from me, and there is little need to bring on these questions of precedence here.—London, 8th January 1565.
Postcript : Secretary Cecil tells me that the Ambassador the Queen has in Madrid has begged leave to return, which has been given him on the ground of ill-health. The secretary will remain to receive letters until another person goes to replace him.