State Papers, 1655: June (7 of 7)

Pages 587-599

A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 3, December 1654 - August 1655. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.

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In this section

June (7 of 7)

Col. Rob. Lilburne to secretary Thurloe.

Vol. xxvi. p. 681.

I Received yesterday his highnes commands concerning the giving a speedy account of the prisoners I have secured, which I intend to doe with all expedition I can; but as yet (by reason those tropes that were in Darbyshire and Cheshire came not soe soon as was expected) I have not an account of those two counties, but looke for them daily, and then (God willing) shall not faile. In the interim haveinge met with the lord John Bellasses at Yorke, I have secured him, untill I know his highness pleasure about him, for as I remember he was one prickt downe. I intreate your speedy answer herein, and shal be glad to know what you doe in generall with such kind of cattle, and to heare a little further of your good successe at Hispaniola, which my newes tell mee is possesst by generall Venables. If this might not be too great a trouble, it would be very acceptable, and much oblige

York, June 26, 1655.

Sir, your most humble servant,
Robert Lilburne.

The commissioners of the treasury to the protector.

To his highness the lord protector.

Vol. xxvii. p. 677.

May it please your highness,
Application being made unto us the commissioners of your highness's treasury by the water-bailiffs and conservators of the river of Severn, for the appointment of a steward in the place of the late steward deceased, we do humbly represent to your highness, that both that and sundry officers of inferior natures, as stewards of courts, bailiffs of mannors, woodwards, and the like, which are of small value, and not so soon looked after as places of greater advantage, have anciently been and are so necessary to be continued for the due and orderly management of your highness's revenue, that without them it will suffer damage; which offices, by reason of the limitation of our commission, we have not power to grant; and do therefore humbly offer it to your highness consideration, whether you will please to direct, that addresses shall be made to your highness for those and the like inferior places, or to give power to any other persons whom your highness shall think fit to dispose them by grants to be passed in your highness's name, as heretofore hath been accustomed.

Which we humbly submit to your highness's pleasure.

B. Whitelocke.
E. Mountagu.
W. Sydenham.

June 26. 1655.

To Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.

Paris, July 7, 1655. [N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 703.

My lord,
Your father is still at Genitoy, whither I have sent your letter of the first of this month. The surintendants went from hence the day before yesterday to the court at Soissons. It is thought, my lord your father may come hither for two or three days in the mean time, but he saith not.

Here is no news from the camp before Landrecy, only the taking care of monsieur de la Feuillade. Some say he is killed. It happened, as he was going to the camp with fifteen or twenty horse, that he was set upon by a party of the enemies, who were stronger than they, and so was forced to yield after some dispute.

The prince of Condé hath been since sent unto for his release; but he sent word back again, that he could not send him in the condition he was in, being dead of his wounds.

It is thought that the town cannot hold out longer than till the 15th or 20th of this month at the furthest.

A letter of intelligence.

Paris, July 7, 1655. [N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 685.

Yours of the first instant I received. They wonder much here at all the prisoners you make in England: so let them do.

Of his highness's messengers gone to Turin I hear nothing; some say they will be received honourably, others not at all; but the last I believe not, though many will press hard for it.

Of our treaty I hear nothing at all lately; there is some silence of it.

We fear not the Spaniards agreeement with you much. It was much feared here that St. Quintin would be besieged by the prince. I must tell you truth in secret, our army is in a sad condition before Landrecy for want of provision, which the enemy streightens of all sides. The end of that enterprize is not apparent yet.

Prince Condé sent notice to the king to be gone from la Fere, &c. Of a general peace nothing since my former, nor else now known of news, &c.

Sir, yours, &c.

The Spanish embassador in Holland to the states general.

Read the 7th of July, 1655. [N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 695.

The underwritten embassador of Spain having understood by common report, not without a very great admiration, that the lords states general at the request of some receivers or officers, which they have established in the country of Outremeuse, had in some sort resolved to use retorsion upon the dukedom and country of Limburg, which he can hardly give credit unto, nor presume such an unreasonable proceeding from the ordinary equity of their high and mighty lordships: however he doth think it his duty to signify unto them in the name and behalf of the king his master, that such an attempt upon a country, which doth purely belong to his majesty, without any controversy or dispute, could not be suffered, nor otherwise taken, than for an act of hostility; especially without having given any communication of the reason, which might have induced their high and mighty lordships to such a strange novelty, and much less requisite to justify a proceeding so evidently contrary to the peace, which is incompatible with such enterprizes and violences. Wherefore he doth desire their high and mighty lordships to recall, or at least suspend, this resolution (if any such hath been taken, which he hopes not) and all others, which may in the least alter the correspondence, which his majesty hath so devoutly preserved with this state; and in case their high and mighty lordships have any reason to complain, that they would be pleased to let him know it by their lords their commissioners, to the end he may procure them such satisfaction as shall be just. And your high and mighty lordships have the greater reason to proceed with moderation, in regard the difference of the said country of Outremeuse is ready to be divided by the Chambre mipartie, to whom is referred the decision; and that by such novelties and strange proceedings the course of justice would without doubt be interrupted and retarded.


The states general to de Vries, the Dutch resident in Denmark.

Vol. xxvii. p. 699.

We have by occasion of several advices sent unto us from time to time by some of our ministers residing abroad in foreign parts, weighed, pondered, and considered what design upon the present extraordinary preparation of the Swedes might be expected; likewise whether this state might be thereby interested; and consequently taken notice, that out of all the said advices and other advertisements certainly can be gathered, that the design of the king of Sweden is intended to make himself master of the city and harbour of Dantzick; likewise of the places and ports under the command of the duke of Brandenburgh in Prussia, situated on the east sea; and having likewise particularly considered the dangerous consequences, which may accrew thereby to the prejudice of the state, and the good inhabitants thereof, as well in regard of the navigation and commerce upon the east seas, and particularly upon the said harbours as otherwise. Wherefore we have thought fit, for the service of the country, to signify unto you hereby, also to desire and require you most seriously, that you would endeavour to learn with as much dexterity and secrecy as is possible, whether the king of Denmark hath any or what knowledge and communication he may have of the said design, or otherwise of the Swedes, and in what manner the business is looked upon by him there, especially whether the king of Sweden, for the executing of his designs, doth expect any favour or assistance from the king of Denmark; and whether it would be in anywise taken ill by him, that we should contribute our assistance to put a stop to his designs; yea whether he would not be glad to second our intentions. Upon all which we expect your answer as soon as possible, and advice from time to time on all that passeth, for it doth very much concern us.

Hague, July 7, 1655. [N. S.]

A letter of intelligence to mr. Petit.

Paris, July 7, 1655. [N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 707.

All the curates in this city have decreed in an assembly by them held, not to admit into the communion such as shall approach thereunto with patcht faces and powdered hair, nor those also that come with naked breasts, be they never of so great quality.

One of the said curates, as you have heard, went to court according to the chancellor's orders, having been referred there by the king unto his eminency. The said curate has refused to see him, having declared, that his archbishop, namely cardinal de Retz, having sent him the pope's bull to publish it, had expressly charged him to speak thereof only unto his majesty.

On St. Peter's and St. Paul's holiday, the curate of this last church caused cardinal de Retz arms to be put up there, giving him the title of archbishop of Paris; whereof the governor of the Bastille having had notice, he sent for the said curate, under pretence of visiting a sick body, to detain him prisoner; but this curate mistrusting the business, would not go, but sent his first vicar.

It is the embassador of Savoy, who has published, that the grand seignior hath caused the English to be massacred, to be avenged of general Blake's enterprize, saying to have received letters thereof from Turin; but it is not believed, by reason the news thereof is written from no place.

The syndic and council of Geneva to the protector.

Vol. xxvii. p. 719.

Tres haut & serenissime seigneur,
Dans le vif ressentiment, que nous avons des horribles persecutions & massacres, qui ont esté excercés contre nos freres des eglises reformeés des Vallies de Piedmont, nous avons receu une singuliere consolation par la lettre, de laquelle il a pleu a vostre altesse serenissime nous honorer; en ce que nous voyons, que suivant sa pieté ordinaire, qu'elle fait esclatter entre ses autres vertus heroiques, & son grand zele a la conservation de la vraye religion, & de ceux, qu'en font profession, elle est non seulement touchée tres sensiblement de l'extreme calamité de ces eglises, mais aussi, qu'il luy plaist contribuer ses soins pour leur restablissement & leur faire sentir abondamment les effets de sa beneficence; ce que nous donne subject d'adorer les ressorts merveilleux de la providence de Dieu, & son infinie bonté envers les siens, qui les abbatant d'une main, & les relevant de l'autre, a suscité vostre altesse serenissime en ces temps calamiteux pour la deffense des pauvres fidelles persecutes par les ennemis de la verite. Ceste saincte & Christien generosité, que vostre Altesse fait paroistre a la protection des membres du seigneur Jesus, luy a non seulement merité & luy peut faire porter avec justice le titre glorieux de protecteur & defenseur de la vraye eglise, & luy acquerir la gloire immortelle; mais aussi attirera sur vostre altesse serenissime les plus precieuses benedictiones du ciel & de la terre par les prieres de tout ce corps mystic en general, & de tous ses membres en particulier. Comme par une singuliere grace de Dieu nous sommes de ce nombre, & de ceux qui ont ressentis les effects de l'honneur & de la bienveuillanee de vostre altesse serenissime, dont nous osons encore esperer la continuation de sa bonté pour l'advenir, nous ne cesserons nous jamais de presenter nos tres humbles & ardentes supplications a Dieu pour la prosperité & conservation de vostre altesse, & l'heureux succes de ses entreprises a la gloire de Dieu, & au repos de son eglise. Nous y sommes obligés par toutes sortes de considerations & de nouveau par l'honneur, qu'il a pleu a vostre altesse serenissime nous faire de prendre confiance en nous, & de nous commettre l'execution de son dessein pour la subvention de nous pauvres freres desoles, par l'envoy & distribution de deux mille livres d'Angleterre, qui'l luy a pleu ordonner pour fournir a les plus pressantes necessités: ce que nous ferons par les voyes les plus seures & promptes, qui ont desja esté employées pour l'envoy & distribution des collectes faites icy & en Suisse, & y apporterons tout le soin & diligence possibles pour tesmoigner a vostre altesse serenissime nos respects, & que nous sommes,

Tres haut & serenissime seigneur,
De vostre altesse serenissime tres humbles serviteurs,
Les syndics & conseil de Geneve,
Du. Four.

Ce June 27, 1655.

Major general Berry to the protector.

Vol. xxvii. p. 723.

May it please your highnes,
I have, according to your command, sent an account of what I have done in these countyes. If it fall short of what you expect, I have onely this to say, the countyes are large, and my helpers very few; but I hope I have lest nothing undone, but what may be done when you please. The hearts of the enemy are fallen, and a word commands them; and all would be well here, had we a few honest men to beare rule, and lead the people. Our ministers are bad, our magistrates idle, and the people all asleepe; only these present actings have a little awakened. But I shall not presume to trouble you any further; but humbly professe, that I am

Your highnes most obedient servant to my power,
Ja Berry.

Lincoln, June
27, 1655.

Captain Thompson goes on to gett up his troope, but the other is not yet disposed of. We waite your pleasure concerning mr. Fines; if not he, I thinke Yarbarrough would be fitt.

Extract out of the register of the resolutions of the lords states general.

Jovis, July 8, 1655. [N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 727.

The lord pensionary de Witt have having communicated a letter to the assembly from the lord embassador Boreel, writ to him from Paris, dated the second of this month, containing amongst the rest the pretences of the three millions, anno 1625, disburst for this state, which France will now impute in part against some liquidated sums, which some particular subjects of their high and mighty lords must have of the king himself; whereupon being debated, it is resolved, that there shall be writ to the said lord embassador, that in case he hear any thing further concerning the said pretences, that he should debate the business with those arguments and reasons, wherewith he was formerly supplied from hence, and such others as he shall think fit to make use of.

At a court held at the house of mr. William Whitaker on June 28, 1655.


Edward Digges, esq; governor.


Colonel George Ludlow, Esq;
Colonel Thomas Petus,
Lieutenant colonel Bridges Freeman,
Colonel William Taylor,
Colonel William Bernard,
Colonel Edward Hill,
Lieutenant colonel Samuel Matthews,
Captain Henry Percey,
Major William Gooche,


This day a letter directed to Richard Bennet, esq; governor of Virginia, from his highness the lord protector, bearing date the 12th of January 1654, being read, it is the opinion of the court, that the honourrble Edward Digges, esq; governor, do draw up an answer of the said letter to his highness the lord protector, and intimate unto his highness, that this country did never intermeddle nor own the business, which hath happened between those men of Severn and my lord Baltimore his officers; but what hath been acted therein was by the commissioners Richard Bennet, esq; and colonel William Claiborne, esq; authorised by the parliament, and without the consent of the council or assembly of Virginia. And further, that since one of the said commissioners, Richard Bennet, esq; is now in England employed as agent for Virginia, and is there present to answer to this particular business, acted by him as by commission aforesaid, and that the countenancing of either party may bee the occasion of further blood-shed:

This court doth think fit not to intermeddle in this business any further, until his highness the lord protector shall be more fully informed in the proceedings, (which in all likelihood will be made appear to him by the aforesaid Richard Bennet, esq; this instant year,) and shall signify what his pleasure shall be therein to his country, unto which we shall (as in duty bound) with all obedience submit.

Vera copia exaratur,
per me Edward Digges.

This is a true copy, as it come to me from mr. Digges, Richard Bennet.

To the worshipfull Henry Scobell, esq; clerk of the council of the state.

Middelsex, Martin's in the Fields.

Vol. xxvii. p. 745.

These are to certify you, that there hath been collected in the parish of Martin's in the Fields in the county of Middlesex, for relief of the persecuted protestants within the dominions of the duke of Savoy, the sum of three hundred and twenty five pounds four shillings and four pence, which said sum was paid in by us the minister and church-wardens of the same parish to the lord mayor of the city of London, that now is, and to alderman Viner, the appointed receivers of the same, the 25th of this instant. Witness our hands the 28th day of June 1655.

Gabriel Sangar, minister.
Thomas Barker, Church-wardens.
John Tongue, Church-wardens.

A letter of intelligence from mr. Manning.

Cologne, [July 8, 1655. N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 749.

This day being the 8th of July 1655, are come letters from the king of Sweden, the marquis of Brandenburgh, and general Wrangel to Charles Stuart. None knows the contents but Charles Stuart. He is very jocund on the receipt of them. These, as I said, are affectionately his friends: what they mean you shall in due time know.

Also came letters from prince Rupert, that give advice, that Bardy, the duke of Modena's agent, was come to him, and had removed all doubts, which he made of not going that journey, so that now in honour he must go. He offered the lord Gerard to be his lieutenant general, Craven to be general of his ordnance, and Massey to be his lieutenant general of them. This is very private here. Much hopes Charles Stuart hath from the king of Swedes, as to have foreign forces. Major James Halsey, who came with Wilmot, he is about 35 years of age, round face, in short hair, or a perriwig, and a round man, with one of Ascam's murtherers, who went in Spain by the name of Arnet a Scot, but an Englishman, and was the younger Halsey's servant, about 33 years of age, lame of the one hand, his hair hanging strait, with the messenger I mentioned in my last, went tuesday evening last for England. I could wish I had a cypher with the governor of Dover, for these things. I can assure you, that murdering of the protector is still endeavoured for all your severe proceedings; and the actors have considerable sums of money in hand to manage it.

One captain Philip Curtis is come this day from England hither. Let Lambert have a care of himself, for it is whispered here, that he goes often to Wimbleton slenderly guarded. I am entirely yours.

I do not hear that you have questioned or imprisoned the lords of Hertford, Seymour, Mohun, Maynard, Peters, Row, Carbury, Strafford, colonel John Russell, and many others, whom I have named to you, and were deeply engaged. Musgrave was at first one of the council in London. Neither one colonel John Covet, Samuel Sandys, Sherington Talbot, the lord Coventry, his sons and brother William Coventry, and the lord of Shrewsbury. Middleton is designed to be sent into Sweden.

Werden, Stephens, doctor Lloyd, one of Charles Stuart's chaplains, and Lovel the duke of Gloucester's tutor now in England, all employed hence. I sent you word last week where Wilmot's lady resides. The messenger may be found.

An intercepted letter.

Thursday, January 28, [1655.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 757.

My dearely loved and honored freind,
When I have the happinesse to heare next from you, I hope I shall heare you have received the bill for 10 l. which was to be payd you upon sight by mr. Wildgose. As yet your freind mr. Savage and his brother are in statu quo; but every sunday waite their change. It is very much feared here, the businesse of Savoy is nothing as it has been first represented; and if it had not been for doctor Duncan's letter and larger relation, and the deane's smart censure in briefe, which were far and neere communicated, the massacre would have gained little beleefe from those of our principles; and however it beginns now much to coole, by reason of some printed relations among us (that tast indeed of a Romish penn) which hugely heighten the occasion, and lessen the fact.

If you will pardon the bulke of sending, I will give you here a preface, which an acquaintance of mine made to a publique sermon of his the sunday after the humiliation, as it was taken in short hand from him, which they say has done the exercise of the liturgy some good at Whitehall.

But I have a courtesey to begg from you, which if you can do shall be requited with a very choyce booke from hence: it is a few choyce cutts of the old and new testament to be bound in a large folio bible of the Roman letter. Wee have newly come abroad the history of the late king, written by mr. L'Estrange; and to morrow comes out a new piece of doctor Taylor, both which shall be sent you with the soonest to requite your cutts.

I have not of late weekes nor monthes seen any of your freinds. The search and taking up of lords, gentry, and even meaner persons, continues every night and day, which makes us all stand amazed; and some are not afrayd to whisper it the second part of Piedmont.

I stirr little abroade, and it was brought me an hower since, that the protector had feasted this day all the high sherisses of England and the lord mayor of London; but another is come to me just now, and assures me, it was not this day, but wil be for certaine to morrow. Then we shall know our doome.

The times are so ticklish, that I take little delight in writing letters, even where they are much due. If therefore a postscript may not passe for an incivility, present I pray my humble service with this following to mr. Dr Cos. (fn. 1)

Reverend Sir,
I give you an exercise for your goodnesse, and a subject for your pardon, while I thus crowd up my respects to you in so narrow a margin; but I cannot hold presenting you with my humblest thankes for the kind remembrance of love you were pleased to send me by your sweete daughter. Sir, I wish I knew what bookes might be acceptable unto you from hence, and I should gladly sometimes find you a recreation in them. I suppose you may have received the Monasticon Auglicanum. There is a little new piece of doctor Jer. Taylor's, which covets to kisse your hands, and 'tis of the printer's presenting, one in Ivy-lane, who ventures at all things, and who, it seemes, has bought the coppy of your most usefull devotions, which he is now reprinting in a large duodecimo; and which he would gladly should waite at least a moneth, in hopes that when you heare of this good worke (indeed it is so) you will promote it soe farr, as to send him some additionall prayers, or whatsoever other supplement.

I beg your pardon for this boldnesse, and am,
reverend sir, your devoted servant that honours you, G. W.

June 28, styl. vet.

The superscription,
A monsieur monsieur George à Leon. II faut le laisser
chez monsieur la Fontaine aux trois burses Rue
St. Honore à Paris.

Nieuport, the Dutch embassador in England, to the states general.

Vol. xxvii. p. 735.

High and mighty lords,
My lords, since the sending of my last, I am informed, that the town of St. Domingo, in the island of Hispaniola, was taken by the English not on the 28th of May, but on the 28th of April, the gentleman who communicated that news to me having named one month for the other. I have heard further, that near 500 Frenchmen of the island of St. Christopher did join the English with some ships, in the said expedition, and that one of those small vessels had brought the said news to the island of St. Christopher. It is also believed for truth, that the fleet under the admiral Blake is arrived from the Mediterranean in the road of Cadiz, having made a treaty with those of Tripoli and Algiers; and not only redeemed in the last place the protestant slaves, but also above 40 Netherlanders. I am told by a person, who has pretty good knowledge of the affairs that happen here, that a large quantity of provisions, ammunition, and other necessaries, are sent to the said fleet, so that they conclude therefrom, that the said fleet is not to come home, but shall actually keep and serve abroad, whilst the other fleets carry on the designs against the Spanish West Indies. Yesterday I was informed, that the 18 ships, which are laden with men and all sorts of necessaries to assist the fleet under admiral Pen, are failed the beginning of this week under the command of major general Sedgewicke. Some days ago arrived here two ships out of the East Indies, one called the Christopher, belonging to the East India company, and the other a frigat, called the Allum, fitted out by some private persons; the latter is a small vessel, but as I hear much richer loaden than the other, having on board a vast many silks and other stuffs; a third ship, called the Jonathan, fitted out likewise by private persons, and not by the company, is sailed directly for Leghorn, to fell there her cargo, which, as they tell me, is not very well liked here, notwithstanding the owners offer to pay the duties and customs for the same. The money, which is gathered here for the persecuted Waldenses in Piedmont, is daily sent up hither out of the respective provinces, and they say, that a considerable sum will be brought together, since this nation in general is very much concerned for those poor wretches. The day before yesterday the judges were nominated to hold the assizes in the circuits of the several provinces. In and about this city they have secured this week my lord Coventry, my lord John, the son of the marquis of Winchester, my lords Maynard, Petre, and Lucas, who are all imprisoned in separate places; a great many other gentlemen that were of the king's party, but of a lesser quality, are likewise confined in the respective provinces, in their houses or other places. The gentleman, who has the commission to carry the ratification to Sweden, is not yet set out. And the Swedish minister here looks out for a house for the extraordinary embassador of that crown, but will take it no longer than for three months. Mr. Thurloe, since his return from Hampton Court, finds himself indisposed, and has let blood again to day; so that I have not been able to speak with him these two days.

Wherewith, &c.
High and mighty lords, &c.
W. Nieuport.

Westminster, July 2,
1655. [N.S.]

Just now is delivered to me by mr. Meadowes the instrument of ratification of the lord protector of the last agreement touching the regulation of the remaining undecided pretensions; but whereas the same is folded in too large a form to be sent conveniently by the post, and some officers being here, in the service of your high mightinesses, that are ready to go over next week, I intend to send the same by one of them.

A letter of intelligence from the Hague.

July 3, 1655. [N. S.]

V. xxvii. p. 619.

This morning had audience the general of the ships that came this time from the East Indies. He did speak of a great advantage, which the Hollanders have had upon the Portuguese, having destroyed them three-score ships, whereof 40 were cast away upon the shore, and the rest burnt, &c. saith that China, the most part of it, is still under the Tartars; and withall that there is a king, who is turned a Christian, and had sent to the pope; and that that king doth still maintain himself. Likewise mr. Van Dam, advocate of the East India company, having been in England, is returned, and hath exhibited unto the assembly of the states general the ratification of the protector upon the agreement made concerning the differences of the East India companies. In regard that those of Embden are not yet come to exhibit towards the 1st of July in their accounts, according to the resolution of the 28th of April, they have resolved to write unto them again, summoning them to appear here; otherwise they will fall upon the business in their absence, with those of the states their adversaries. There hath been a great new complaint against those of Overyssel, for not sending somebody to the Chambre mipartie; but the mischief is, that Deventer doth pretend, that the turn (since the lord of Sallick hath been on the behalf of the nobility) doth belong unto Deventer; and on the contrary those of the other quarters do pretend, that the turn is still in them, in regard that the lord of Sallick was never in the employment. The lord Veth did propose, that provisionally they ought to appoint mr. Vriersen (although one of Friezland, but yet an old civilian) to officiate in the place of him of Overyssel; but it had no success. The lords Haersolte, Vriesen, and Breda, commissioners of Overyssel, having been in Zealand, are come back, having obtained a resolution almost as they demanded it by their proposition; which is printed and publickly sold.

These of Goes have proposed to the assembly of Zealand by express orders of their principals, that for pregnant reasons Zealand ought to choose the prince of Orange at present for stadtholder, and prince William, during his minority, to exercise the charge. They did refer it to the next meeting, the other members not being instructed about it; and in all likelihood (if the respect of the protector doth not withhold them) they will make that election; for at Middleburgh itself the common sort of people doth begin to be very hot for that election; and the magistrates dare not oppose them.

The regulation of the Omlanders hath been again debated, but not resolved on; and there are new commissioners come from the Omlanders, namely, the lords Tamminga, Ripperda, and Wychel. They will have audience on Monday. They are of the strongest party, with whom prince William doth hold.

July 5, 1655.

The lord Wyman, plenipotentiary of the elector of Brandenburgh, hath had audience. Having run through the instrumentum sæderis between this state and the said elector, and upon every thing or article contrary or suspected by him, he said what must be, or what he had to say, and especially concerning the treaty of Xanten, he did very much contradict. In all likelihood the provinces will see it, and provisionally it will be put into the hands of commissioners appointed for the affairs of Brandenburgh; and those of Holland will delay him, till their assembly be together. This afternoon here arrived out of England the lord de Bye, resident for Poland, who in all likelihood will also interpose in this business. Those of Zealand have proposed, that they are of opinion, that a day of prayer ought to be observed for the Vaudois, and do consent for a collection to be made for them.

They do still remain resolved to send a publick minister to reside in Switzerland, who shall go in his passage to speak with the Duke of Savoy; and they have appointed one out of each province to draw up his instructions. The son of the lord Zuylichem is likely to have this employment. From Zealand are likewise come commissioners on the behalf of the directors for safe conduct-money erected during the war with England. And in regard that trade was lower than in any other part; so likewise Zealand was more indebted than any other province, and knows not how to get out of their debts than by the continuation of the said safe conduct-money; which Holland is very much against, saying, that that is capable to destroy all trade. In short Holland and Zealand will have many a dispute about it.

In the business and difference of the Omlandes nothing is yet concluded. It seems it is delayed till the assembly of the states of Holland. The lord de Bye is returned without any answer, and without having taken his personal leave of the protector, having only a single pass.

July 6.

This morning was most of it spent in the business of the Omlandes. The one party doth begin to decline almost altogether the decision, yea of the states generall, being willing to maintain a kind of league, which hath been observed there hitherto, speaking likewise of delaying the business.

The lord de Bye faith, he could not prevail to obtain an answer upon his proposition tending to incite the protector against the Muscovites; that seeing himself delayed, he thought it best to signify to mr. Thurloe, that he did intend to make a voyage into Holland, and that he would return again afterwards. So that he came away with a pass signed on the top, Oliver P. without any subscription, either by the protector or secretary, or sealed. The lord Nieuport (with whom he communicated all his business) advised him (to render himself agreeable) to invite the protector to the mediation; but he told him, that he had express order not to invite him, yea to decline him. He faith, that the said Nieuport is one of the intimates of the protector; that the treaty with France is not yet signed; but that France did shew themselves more inclined than England; and that it was not true, that France had recalled their embassador; that on the contrary, France did expect with a great desire the assault, which Pen and Venables would make upon the islands of the West Indies belonging to the king of Spain; and that there was a rumor, that Hispaniola should be taken already.

The lord Wyman hath exhibited his observations upon the alliance with Brandenburgh.

July 7.

This morning there was a great deal of stir about the lord Henry de la Capell, being first in the commission of the treaty of alliance with the elector of Brandenburgh.

Those of Holland have produced a resolution of the year 1624, by which it is said, whosoever is in the service or oath of a foreigner, is not capable to appear here in the states general. Now it is so, that the said lord de la Capell, having some estate in the country of Cleve, did appear in the assembly of the states of Cleve. Ergo, that he ought to absent himself out of the assembly of the states general; and chiefly or at least that he ought not to have accepted of the commission to treat upon the alliance with Brandenburgh. Whereupon there hath been a great dispute. The lord de Capell did confess, that he was one of the states of Cleve; but said, that he never gave his oath to the elector; and the most part of the provinces were for allowing of him, but Holland said, that they could not enter then upon any such business with him; and by this means this will serve to retard and delay the treaty with Brandenburgh.

The business of the Omlandes hath been debated, and they did seriously endeavour to accommodate the same, or at least to resolve upon it; so that I believe there will be some final resolution taken in it.

July 8.

Yesterday all the afternoon till midnight there was a particular meeting about the differences of the Omlandes, where the lord pensionary de Wit did behave himself most gallantly to dispose the parties to a submission; and that submission being passed, they did labour so well, that they did conclude and pronounce a regulation, according to the project formerly made; and not to lose any time, they would not give up till all was writ fair, and signed by all the commissioners and interested; which being done, the said lord pensionary was so generous (although it be very well known, that neither he nor any other of the commissioners would not receive the least treat of wine in recompence) as to invite all the company, as well of the commissioners, as of the states general and the Omlandes, being at least 20 or 30 persons, to dinner; so that in lieu of getting any thing, he will spend 30 or 40 pound upon them, refuting several who did discourse, that the Hollanders did only foment the division in the provinces. They have also caused the commissioners to sign an act of oblivion.

The commissioners of the states of East Friesland have this morning proposed a serious complaint, how that those of Embden did still forbear coming hither; in the mean time they are now come, and will fall to work.

They were resolved to write to the lord Frise resident in the Sound, to the end to represent to the king of Denmark the present state and condition of the preparations of the Swedes; and to found him, whether he would not give his helping hand to put all things in a condition to prevent any alteration in the Baltick Sea; but for fear of giving offence, they thought fit to forbear yet a while, to stay and see where the Swedish design will fall.

July 9, 1655.

Those of Zealand have proposed, how in their last assembly of the states of Middleburgh, the lords Haersolte, Vriesen, and Breda, commissioners of the states of Overyssell, did address themselves, making complaint how that those of Deventer and Twent did separate and keep themselves so from the body of the states of Overyssel, declaring the reasons, and requiring the aid and interposition of the other provinces, and especially that of Zealand, that thereupon the states of Zealand did declare themselves inclined and ready to endeavour for the said consolidation, desiring that the states general would declare them selves likewise. Thereupon those of Holland said, that the next week there should be a meeting of their principals, and that in the mean time they desired, that the same might be suspended.

The lord Capell doth still scruple to be turned out of his commission for the treaty with Brandenburgh, believing that it is against his reputation. But they have propounded an expedient under hand, that instead of managing that treaty by one of every province, it shall be only put into the hand of three or four commissioners, and by this means the lord de la Capell may be easily discharged without any disreputation.

An intercepted letter.

Vol. xxvii. p. 463.

Dear sir,
I have not failed to write to you, however letters may have miscarried, nor shall not so long as I am able. Tell me, whether I shall send to you, which I hope you will be careful of; but I perceive the fear of our breaking with Spain makes you have many troublesom journeys to get in your debts, which you do very wisely; for I am confident that you know well enough, that your credit here will not be charged with a small sum, and the longer it is of doing the worse, for interest runneth high; besides those of your creditors, that are content to have patience, confiding in your honesty, may in time with much tampering be brought to think, it will be their best course to join with those inconscionable people, that persecute you, least they lose all. But I need not give you counsel or caution. I shall only tell you the news we have here, general Venables hath taken Hispaniola and St. Domingo.

Mr. Adland is now in town, and would gladly know, what you would have done with your goods, which are in his hands, if my master knew how you would have them dis Bromley posed; but you have not given any directions since your journey. Mr. Holland is a very honest man, but timorous as to the trade you are upon.

June 29, 1655.

To mr. Henry Hunford.

Leo. Willyams.

The governor of Virginia to the protector.

Vol. xxvii. p. 783.

May it please your highness,
Haveing received your letter, a coppie whereof this bearer is to present unto your highness, I thought it my duty imediately to call the council, to advise what ought to bee concluded in reference to your commands; and accordingly I the present governor, with the rest of the council, doe humbly signifie to your highness, that this countrey of Virginia did never intermeddle, or owne the buisness, which hath lately happened betweene those men of Severne, and my lord Baltimore his officers in Maryland; but what hath beene acted therein was by Richard Bennett and collonel William Claiborn, esqrs; commissioners authorised by the parliament, and without the consent of the council, or assembly of Virginia; and that the said mr. Bennett one of the commissioners is now in England, imployed as agent for Virginia, and ready to answer this particular buisiness acted by him, as by commission aforesaid; and wee further humbly concive, that the countenancing of either party might occasion more blood shed, to prevent which we thought it not fit to interest ourselves in the businesse, untill your highness should be more fully informed in all the proceedings, which we doubt not will effectually be performed by the said mr. Bennett this instant year. Wee therefore hope to have your highness's pleasure herein further signified to this countrey, unto which we shall (as in duty bound) with all obedience submit,

Virginia, June
29, 1655.

Your highness most humble and obedient servant,
E. Digges.

A letter of intelligence.

Vol. xxvii. p. 805.

Worthy sir,
TAndem fit sirculus arbor. I have donn your buisnes in manner and forme, as I undertooke it, and your master desired. There wants nothing but security to be given for the payment of the monye; wherefore I desire you to take such order with mr. Longland, as he may assure and receive satisfaction, and I will bring him, if he thinks fitt, unto the party himselfe. I agreed for neither a pennie more or lesse then what I nominated to you in your owne chamber; but had I not happily carryed the buisnes as I did, both your buisnes and myselfe had miscarryed in a manner that had bin irreparable; for there was notice given of my coming to this towne in a very scurvy manner, as to the old gentleman; others judged better of it, some the best that could be imagined. Wherefore fearing the worst, I kept my selfe a month in towne privatly, before any living soule knew of my being heer, and so I did my buisnes with the party, by whose meanes I got the length of the old gentleman's foot, before such time as any of his younger children knew I was in towne, and then all was well construed in the better sence. The precious powder, which you bestowed upon me for such a rarity, doth neither well dry, nor benefitt my hayr, but inclines it to a scurvie colour. I pray send me that, which will doe me some service. You can expect no further newes at this present till security be given; and then I beleeve you will heere that, which will exceed your expectation, and give you full contentment and satisfaction. There is heer lately come to towne one Dr. Bayly, and mr. Mettam, who hath translated his booke for him into Italian; and there is great talke of his presenting the sayd booke unto the pope; and indeed there is great commendations given heer in Rome of the sayd booke. I have nothing more to add, but to desire you to take order for my supply of maintenance, and if in case your minde should alter from that which I have effected, that you would send me a sufficient supply of mony for me to returne for England. This is all for the present, that can be sayd by your humble servant to command,

Rome, July 10, 1655. [N. S.]

Thomas Bagnall.

Servien to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.

Turin, July 10, 1655. [N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 807.

My lord,
The post coming yesterday from Rome, brought me a letter from M. de Lionne, who writt me word, that you desired to be informed by me of the business of the Vallies of Piedmont; in pursuance whereof I must tell you, my lord, that I have endeavoured to satisfy you beforehand by a letter, which I directed a fortnight since to monsieur de Brienne for you; and to the end that you may be the more fully instructed, I here inclosed send you a copy of the declaration, which the duke of Savoy hath set forth. I do likewise send you a copy of the letter, which I wrote to the E. of Brienne, which possibly may stand you in stead to answer to that, which may be said in England upon the relation, which mr. Morland, who is still here, may send over, or make at his return. If I can get a copy of the justifications, which will be given him by the ministers of Savoy, I will send you likewise a copy; as there is no ill, which doth not produce some good, this trouble affording me occasion of this correspondence, doth likewise give me that to assure you of the high esteem for your person, with whom I have the honour to be yours, &c.

Avaugour, the French embassador in Sweden, to Bordeaux, the French embassador in England.

Stockholm, July 10, 1655. [N. S.]

Vol. xxvii. p. 811.

My lord,
Now at last is the negotiation begun between Sweden and Poland; and if the end do answer the beginning, there is some cause to hope, that it will not be unhappy; at least if the honours and civilities, which are shewn to the embassadors of Poland at their arrival, if the sweetness and moderation of the first conference on both sides, and if the choice of commissioners may be any good omen. They made their entry on monday the 5th of this month, after they had been brought from the place, where they had left their ship, in a galliot of the king's, accompanied with a great many of the nobility here, and by two senators. At their entrance the citizens in arms, and all the troops that were here, were in battle array, in a place where their lodging was prepared for them, most richly furnished; where they likewise found the cloth laid, and good cheer. This embassy however doth not alter the resolution of the king to depart; yea it doth rather seem to advance it. He doth expect to go aboard the fleet to morrow, and there expect a wind. There is such hastning away, my time to day is altogether taken up in taking leave of those that go away to morrow, that I have hardly time to do the duty of corresponding. Yet I must not leave you, my lord, before I have told you, that after their publick audience, wherein they did very much satisfy all the court, they have had a conference with the commissioners, which the king sent them the same day, to hear their propositions; where every one being called upon to speak the first, and the one not daring to demand, and the other not daring to offer, it is yet in dispute, who shall break the ice. And in regard the said embassadors have a great desire to begin the work, and to make a speedy conclusion, they have proposed to the Swedish commissioners, that it would be requisite to have, if not a mediator, since the court doth declare not to admit of one, at least some third body, as an interpositor, to cause the parties to explain themselves, and to moderate that, which might be too rough in treating face to face. And I have been proposed by them, as having the honour of being the minister of a great king. This the Swedish commissioners have taken ad referendum; upon which their answer is expected to proceed in the treaty, and to bring it to a conclusion. Thus far, my lord, they are come; from whence it is not very easy to foresee what will succeed: all that I can tell you is, that in case this peace be made, it will turn this great army both by sea and land another way; it being certain, that Sweden will not rest with these considerable forces on foot. The states of this kingdom have desired, that the king would take a new oath, not to suffer any Calvinists in his dominions, and not to admit of any henceforward into offices, but those that are of the Lutheran religion. We think my lord protector should likewise inform himself of this rigor against those of his confession, as of that, which happened in Savoy against the Vaudois.

I prepare to follow the court. It were to be wisht, they would defer their departure for some days, or that the embassadors would resolve to pass with the king to treat in the first convenient place, if he cannot be stayd any longer here at present; which I do very much endeavour to bring about.

Attorney general Prideaux to secretary Thurloe.

Vol. xxvii. p. 815.

I make bold to acquaint you with whatt happened at the Rolles this afternoone, where were 14 causes appointed to be heard, and the clyents and councell attended, and the master of the Rolles to be there, untill past fower of the clock, waitinge if the master of the court would come, that soe he might proceede in the hearinge of them; but none came, and soe was necessitated to rise without giveinge proceedings unto them; which I beleeve hath been the first time that he did it. He doth, for any thinge I perceive in the way of the justice of the court, observe the ordinances, and gives dispatche to all matters, that come before him, which by the regulation are directed to be done by him; which is a very greate case to the people. If some course might be taken by some intimation, that they might attend according to the duty of theire places, that suitors might not be disappointed in their expectation of justice, it would be worthy of your care in it; for as matters nowe stand, the whole course of justice, as to what concernes the masters, and in what they are to intermeddle, is totally obstructed. I begge your pardon for this trouble. Wishinge you all health, I signe my selfe,

Sir, your most humble servant,
Edm. Prideaux.

June 30, 1655.

General Venables to the protector.

Vol. xxvi. p. 459.

May it please your highnesse,
Generall Pen, the army haveing moved him in that perticuler, hath lest a squadron of the best sayling frigatts to ply to and againe upon these coasts, to seek for prize, or doe any other service against the enimy, as providence shall direct; and the better to enable them to stay, hath drawne out of the slower saylers a proportion of victualls to put into them; and he being to returne for England with the latter, wee could doe noe less than take this opportunitie of humbly praying your highnes, to give him a hearing in our behalfe concerning our great wants of bread, brandy, smyths and carpenters tooles, with a new squadron of shipps, and other necessaryes; whereof a speedy supply will preserve the lives of many, and enable the rest to carry on your highnes service more vigourously; which is all desired by, my lord, your highnes most humble unworthy servant,

R. Venables.

May it please your highnesse,
This letter being written and signed at towne by generall Venables, in the absence of my selfe, who was dispatching your other affaires here, I held it my duty, to let your highnesse understand, that it was the resolution of your commissioners, before any such motion came from the army (the army intending no further attempt at present) to send home the fleet, that now comes, being for the most part heavey saylers; that the frigats, which remaine behind, by taking out of their stores may bee in a capacity to stay; otherwise they would speedily, through want of victualls have been necessitated to returne altogether: which would have been very prejudiciall to your service.

Gregory Butler.


  • 1. Cosins.