Simancas: November 1602

Calendar of State Papers, Spain (Simancas), Volume 4, 1587-1603. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1899.

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

'Simancas: November 1602', in Calendar of State Papers, Spain (Simancas), Volume 4, 1587-1603, (London, 1899) pp. 716-717. British History Online [accessed 23 April 2024]

November 1602

2 Nov.
Estado, 840.
730. Report of the Council of State to Philip III. on England and Ireland.
Your Majesty has ordered us through the duke of Lerma to discuss what had better be done in Ireland in the present state of affairs, since the death of Earl O'Donnell. We have duly considered the matter, and record that in answer to our report upon it of 22nd instant your Majesty was pleased to reply that the correspondence should be continued with the Earl of Tyrone, as it is he that has kept the spark glowing ; and that for the present the Catholics should be encouraged by money, arms, and munitions, and the 30,000 ducats your Majesty ordered should be sent to them, 10,000 ducats per month being sent also from the beginning of next year. Tyrone was to be written to to this effect, that he might understand the solicitude your Majesty feels for the Catholics.
The Commendador of Leon was of opinion that as men could not at present be sent, the money, munitions, etc., ordered should be dispatched at once, accompanied by some trustworthy person to see to the distribution, and to take to the Catholics word of your Majesty's bounty of 10,000 a month from the beginning of the year, so that they might keep their forces in the field until the main succour could be sent, which would be as soon as possible. The person sent should be instructed to learn as minutely as possible the present state of the country, both of friends and enemies, for your Majesty's information. With the first 10,000 ducats, a person of rank should be sent to reside there, and see that the money is applied to the maintenance of troops, either Irish or Scotch, and he hopes with this assistance they will be able to keep afoot, as they have done for many years past.
Fray Gaspar de Cordova remarked that he heard from the Irish in this court (Madrid) that Earl O'Neil can hold out until the spring, if he be assured that the main succour will reach him then, but otherwise they are in doubt about him, as he is reduced to great straits, particularly now that Earl O'Donnell has died, which will greatly discourage them. He is nevertheless of opinion that the money, arms, etc. should be sent as previously ordered. They should be taken by Don Martin de la Cerda, who has been there before, and is known to them, and will be able to learn the true state of affairs for your Majesty's information.
The Constable greatly doubted, seeing the present state of affairs, whether it was possible to deal with this matter effectually, or that the Catholics could hold out with the aid it was now proposed to send them, and that promised for the future. But he nevertheless agrees that Don Martin de la Cerda should be sent with the money, arms etc., and bring back an account of matters.
The Marquis of Poza acknowledges the obligation and need for helping these Catholics, and if the main succour could be sent in the spring, he would be glad. In the meanwhile, the 10,000 crowns should go as proposed, as otherwise the main expedition will be of no use. But in case the succour cannot be sent, he is of opinion that it will be better to undeceive these people in time, so that they may make what arrangements they can.
Count de Olivares was of opinion that the matter should not be abandoned, but that the person mentioned or some other, be sent with the arms, money, etc. with orders to encourage the Catholics, without deceiving them, by telling them that the main succour will be sent in the spring ; and to assure them that your Majesty sympathises with them and strives for their welfare. That your Majesty will do your best to send them the assistance desired. He should return promptly with a detailed report of affairs. He thinks that the best ship that Count de Caracena has should be sent on this service, in order to obtain prompt intelligence.