Cecil Papers
January 1597, 11-20


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'Cecil Papers: January 1597, 11-20', Calendar of the Cecil Papers in Hatfield House, Volume 7: 1597 (1899), pp. 16-31. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=111679 Date accessed: 22 November 2014.


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January 1597, 11–20

The King of France to the Queen.
1596-7, [before Jan. 11].Nous avons receu vos lettres de plainte et mescontentement pour celles de marque et de represaille par nous accordees en notre conseil en faveur d'Adan de Hargues, marchant de notre ville de St Jean de Luz, lesquelles nous avons leues avec regret, tant pour l'amitye et observance que nous vous portons, que pour estre naturellement ennemy de semblables expeditions. Car, encores que ce soient remedes permis par nos traictes pour la protection de nos subgets, ausquels justice est desiree, toutesfoys nous en avons fuy l'usage quant les occasions s'en sont presentees depuis notre regne tant qu'il nous a este possible. Mais la foule et multitude des plaintes et clameurs de nos subgets depredes en mer par les votres, ausquels toute justice a este en effect desniee, a este si grande qu'elle a enfin force notre naturel et notre desliberacion sur la poursuitte du dit de Hargues continues quatre ans durant justiffies par le tesmoignage de nos ambassadeurs et autres nos serviteurs qui ont reside aupres de vous pour nos affaires, de sorte que lesdites lettres ont este emanees. Mais nous avons trouve bon d'en faire surceoir l'execution jusques a la fin du mois de Febvrier prochain, a la premiere instance que nous en a faicte a votre ambassadeur, affin de vous faire paroistre que nous avons plustost cherche et attendu par l'octroy d'icelles un remede aus dites depredacions et injustices que la revanche d'une injure receue. Veritablement c'est chose honteuse et indigne de notre amitye, juree et confirmee de nouveau que l'usage desdites lettres, et qui ne peult estre que de tres mauvaise odeur entre nos subgets et tous ceulx qui en ont conoissance mais il en faut accuser les autheurs des dites prises et denis de justice lesquels abusent de la fiance que nous avons en eulx a notre desceu et au grand prejudice de nos subgets. A quoy nous vous prions trouver bon qu'il soit remedye de part et d'autre, comme il convient, car nous plaignans de vos officiers nous ne voulons excuser et descharger du tout les notres. Mais nous scavons bien que si tels abus ne sont corriges, il faut que nos subgets s'abstiennent du tout de traffiquer par mer et qu'ils demeurent prives du benefice de notre confederation et alliance, chose que nous nous assurons que vous n'entendes aucunement. Au moyen de quoy nous vous prions de deputer quelques uns de vos serviteurs et conscillers pour conferer avec les notres des dits plaintes, les verifier et reparer comme il appartient, et y apporter tel ordre et reiglement pour l'advenir que chacun jouisse de la liberte et seurete de nos traictes, lesquels je veux garder inviolablement comme merite l'affection que vous a vouee.
Endorsed :—“Jan. 1596. To her Majesty from the French King by Monsieur du Vergier.”
Signed. 2 pp. (133. 143.)
The Earl of Lincoln to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 11.“Sir, the lady is gone into the country and returneth within x days; and within vj or vij days after I will (God willing) be here again and do you that little service in that which I will be ready to do in all things whilst I live,” to deserve your friendship. “I have staid this bearer more than this v weeks to carry answer of my letters to the Lansgrave of Hessen. If I were sure that her Majesty would despatch him when I return, I would stay him one xxti days longer; otherwise I would write answer of my own letters (as you advised this day) and despatch him presently.” Begs speedy answer. Jan. 1596.
Endorsed :—11 Jan.
Holograph. 1 p. (37. 63.)
John Norburie to Sir Robert Cecil, of the Privy Council.
1596-7, Jan. 11.Has matters of state to impart and begs to be brought before him with speed; for he cannot write himself and fears prevention “because in prisons are men of many minds.”—From the King's Bench, 11 Jan. 1596.
Signed. 1 p. (37. 63/2.)
Sir R. Sydney to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 11.If Captain Bury need favour he deserves it; for there “he keeps a very good company and keeps himself ever with it, which I can get few of the rest to do,” and will be as ready as any man to serve your lordship.—Flushing, 11 Jan. 1596.
Holograph, 1 p. (37. 64.)
Mary, Lady Willoughby to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 11.In favour of the bearer's brother, who in most men's opinion deserves mercy. My lord procured him bail, “and so continued his very good lord in all respects until the time of sessions, at which instant he was moved to alteration by the suit of the party's father who sometime served the Duchess, my lord's mother.” The man, for his diligent service, was appointed by my lord as my usher, and in all things (save this mischance) has behaved honestly. Hopes that the Queen will extend her favour, “because the matter was extraordinarily enforced against him;” and I would not “have an honest servant perish for want of friends.”—11 Jan. 1596.
Signed. 1 p. (37. 65.)
Edward, Earl of Oxford to his brother-in-law, Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 11.Thanks him for his courtesy in acquainting his wife with a supplication exhibited to the Council against her. She is charged with a matter to which she was never acknowledging and which took place five years ago when she never knew the man, “and if I then were married unto her it was all.” (fn. 1) It is “merely false” that the writer made over to her his pension “with a condition to pay all former warrants granted by me.” Trusts the man who makes so impudent a complaint to personages of such quality as the Privy Council may have his deserts. Sends a schedule to explain the ground of his complaint, which, if made at all, should have been against the writer; “but his shifts and knaveries are so gross and palpable that, doubting to bring his parts and jugglings to light, he doth address his petition against her that is utterly ignorant of the cause.”—11 Jan. 1597.
Endorsed :—“12 Jan. 1596.”
Holograph. 1 p. (37. 67.)
The schedule above referred to, headed,
“The ground whereon Thomas Gurley, plaintiff to the Council, maketh his petition.”
At Flushing there were certain poor gunners who being behind hand for want of their pay sold their interest to this Thomas Gurley, who thereupon offered “me” 300l. to get the lord Treasurer's letter to Sir Thomas Sherley, then under treasurer for the Low Countries. Pretended to the lord Treasurer that Gurley owed him 300l.; and, after examining both him and Gurley, the lord Treasurer wrote to Sherley to pay it, but he was still unfurnished with money. After that Gurley advanced him 200l. of his annuity in the exchequer. Details further complications at great length and complains of Gurley's “impudent” denial of promises, and of the payment of a warrant by Taylor and the officer then in the Exchequer.
2 pp. In the Earl of Oxford's hand. (37. 66.)
Sir Griffin Markham to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7.—Jan. 11.Begs that Cecil who has been pleased to consider his state will assist to get him released. “I know not well what to think of my so long imprisonment. I daily search myself to see if I can find any fault to merit, and I protest (except my own going) I cannot; for if I could I should rest the more satisfied because I had deserved.
“But since it is only the Queen's displeasure, and that, I think, moved by some that now rest ashamed and cannot justify it (for otherwise her Majesty, out of her sweet and merciful disposition, would not so afflict a poor subject whose only end was to enable him and desire nothing so much as by all means to show his zeal to serve her faithfully), I humbly beseech your honour bind me by persisting to make known the truth of my desire and assisting to attain speedy liberty.”—From the Fleet, Tuesday night. Signed :—Gri. Markhame.
Endorsed :—“12 Jan. 1596. Sir Gryph. Marckham to my master.”
Seal. 1 p. (37. 69.)
Frances, lady Stourton to her Sister, Lady Cecil.
1596-7, Jan. 12.The bearer, her brother, Charles Stourton, is summoned before the archbishop of Canterbury. Begs her to move Mr. Secretary to speak to the archbishop that he may be consigned to the place where he lived before; for he is too poor to maintain himself “if imprisoned or restrained from my lady his mother, where he hath his diet and by whom he is chiefly maintained, not having otherwise of his own above xxl. by the year, which my lord my husband gave unto him and the which he holdeth as tenant unto me during my life.” Salutations to herself and Mr. Secretary.—Odyame, 12 Jan. 1596. Signed.
Endorsed by Cecil's clerk :—“My lady Stourton to my Lady.”
1 p. (37. 70.)
M. Beauvoir la Nocle to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 12/22.Je croy que depuis que je suis au monde jay escrit mil et mil paires de lettres, mais je ne pense pas en avoir entreprins une qui menpesche plus que ceste cy, vous asseurant que si je nestois combatu de la juste crainte que jay, de descheoir du tout de votre bonne grace, qui mest aussi chere que ma vie, je mabstiendrois peult estre encores pour ce coup de vous troubler de la lecture de la presente, tant jay de honte en ma conscience de mon si long silence qui me peult sans doubte avoir acquis ung blasme par dela : ne desdaignes, sil vous plaist, Monsieur, mes justes excuses, et croyez que je nay point oublie l'Angleterre, ny les honneurs et grandes faveurs desquelles sa Mate Serme ma gratiffie oultre et pardessus mon meritte lors que jay heu lhonneur de resider pres delle, et ne penses pas que jay oublie ce brave Comte lequel seul jestime meritter ce tiltre sans le blasme de ceulx qui sen estiment dignes. Jauray en mon ame ung perpetuel resentiment de ses extrares courtoisies, et de celles de tas dhonnestes seigneures de par dela. De peur de vous estre trop importun je vous repnteray ceste seulle excuse de ma fault que lestat miserable de mes maisons & affaires domesticques mont du tout distraict de ceste Court on puisque Ion nous donne esperance de vous y veoir jattendray de vous repñter la reste, en et vous demanderay pardon avec solennelle protestations destre plus diligent a ladvenir comme jespere que jen auray plus de moyens demeurant pres du Roy mon maistre. Sur ceste asseurance honores moy de la continuation de votre bonne grace.—Rouen, 22 Jan. 1597.
Je vous supplie tres humblement de favoriser le bon homme Monsr Le Fort de la continuation de votre bonne grace.
Endorsed :—“22 Jan. 96, nouveau stile.”
Holograph. 1 p. (174. 112.)
George Gilpin to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 13.The letter which it pleased you to send me by Sir Francis Vere did so much confirm the assurance which possessed me sufficiently afore of your favour, that I rest even as amazed and overcome with shame and grief of mind until upon some worthy occasion I may in some sort manifest how deeply I am and ever must confess myself bound unto your Lordship. The nobleness of your most worthy mind appears in all your actions, which cannot but prosper being grounded on the most rare virtues of conscience and duty; which course God will undoubtedly bless to the good of the common cause and great joy of all that honour and love you.
Sir Francis hath imparted the particulars of other matters unto me and [I] leave it unto him to write how he found this State and the dispositions of those he hath sounded and dealt with; some of them having since taken occasion to confer thereto with me. Wherein I so answered as seconded and confirmed that by him moved and maintained, so as they begin to taste somewhat better thereof, and doubt not (although the Duke of Buillion bad possessed and carried them away before with his purposes, which in my opinion tendered more to serve his own terms than could upon good grounds be expected to the cause) but they will now bethink themselves well ere they do anything that shall not as well like Her Majesty, and be the readier to join in the action which must be followed to win time and take the advantage; and to further it if any aid or succour shall be required or expected. Since it shall be good to satisfy them thereof and of Her Majesty's purposes afore, to the end they may prepare and determine accordingly, for to rig and have ships in readiness must have a time; and if any men shall or must de drawn hence, so it be known the sooner it will less dislike them, and may the better provide their garrisons otherwise. Besides, the warning or opening of like purposes unto them ere the King of France move anything that might be of other nature would serve them for excuse to answer him. And howbeit the acquainting of it to some private men, being of the better sort, might be thought to assist, I will say (as it may be others have told you) it may be sufficient, but if they list to make exception or those men list to take another course, I durst say (under humble correction) all such private for warning would not suffice; which I leave to your honourable discretion and pleasure to consider of further. Whereunto I will yet add that, if might please Her Majesty to confirm by letter unto the States here her liking of the States' acceptance into the league, which at the Duke of Buillion's being here I dealt in, I dare assure your Honour (whatsoever the French do) it would wonderfully content and like this people, not only confirming their affections to Her Highness, but also to encourage and further their zeal and resolution to persevere in the course hitherto run against the common enemy.
It is here much feared that the French will agree to a peace or long truce, the more because the Duke of Buillon performed hitherto little of that he promised; insomuch as Monsieur Buzenval is gone home (as we say here) to urge matters forward, which most men think to be without his reach seeing the Duke hath given it over. If matters should so fall out that Her Majesty might have cause to use any foreign horse, I have been told that the Count Hohenlo would gladly be employed; who, although he be an Almayn and somewhat subject to their fashions, yet do I not think that any other would do better service, as well for the credit he hath amongst soldiers as his long experience, whereto may be joined his noble mind and great affection shewed to all those of our nation, far surpassing every way others in these countries, so as we are generally beholding to him for the favour and courtesies shewed at all times. He is departed towards Germany about his private business, but others say he is like to be entertained and employed in chief place against the Turks. The Count Solms, who yet is not contented, purposeth to follow ere long, and Count William, with his brethren, are gone to their father to Dillenborgh about business, and is thought will be within these few days again here.
The Count Lodowick of Nassau, whom the States' purpose was to commit to the command of the men they are to entertain and maintain in France, hath missed of his hope, the King having resolved to make three regiments of them, and hath appointed three Maitres du Camp over them, so as there is nothing left to the said Count but the bare name of chief, and how the others will respect him is doubtful, so as it is thought he will be scant well contented. And in my opinion he is well served, seeing that coming so lately out of England where he received such great entertainment, he had so soon forgotten it upon a little show of favour from the Duke of Buillon. His Excellency departed two days ago with all the chiefs towards Geertrudenbergh to meet all the troops of horse and some 5,000 foot, therewith to attempt and charge the enemy at Turnhout, who I doubt will never abide it but retire to Herentals and Diest, which is not above three hours' march from their camp. We begin to expect the news of his success.—Haeghe, this 13th of January 1596.
Holograph. Seal. 3 pp. (173. 9.)
William Stallenge to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596-7, Jan. 13.Since he certified Cecil on the 9th hereof of the arrival of Captain Croftes, they have unladen the ship and received from her the parcels of goods mentioned in the enclosed note. These are laid up in store houses, and order has been given for the safe keeping of the ship and furniture until Cecil's pleasure be further known. The doing of this has detained Captain Croftes longer than otherwise he would have stayed there. There were brought in the said ship nineteen Spaniards, of which Captain Croftes carrieth two with him. The rest are allowed 6d. each man per diem : the charges of these, as also of the rest that were brought from Captain Harper and Captain Legate, is to be borne upon the goods, and therefore they request commandment what shall be done with them. Leaves Captain Croftes' good services to Cecil's consideration. By his means the certain state of the country of Biskie is known, which by any of the rest they could not understand. Has paid him on account of his charges and employment 13l. 6s. 8d.— Plymouth, the xiiith of Januarie 1596.
Holograph. ½ p. (173. 11.)
Sir Horatio Palavicino to Sir Robert Cecil, Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 14.Last night I had letters from my friend who by my order sends from time to time into Flanders to see what the enemy are doing. He writes that the Spanish soldiers were leaving West Flanders and marching towards Brabant, and that the Cardinal is massing men at Tornaut to enter Holland if a frost come. In Dunkirk eight ships are arming to issue out and rob. There is great working upon the fortress of Calais, where an English bark recently arrived with materials. The Cardinal was expecting money from Biscay to come by sea to Calais, and there were ships ready at Laredo for it; but it seems strange that the King should risk sending it that way, unless the resolution he has taken not to treat constrains him to take that way rather than that of Italy which is too long. The Adelantado was still at Madrid and would soon go to Lisbon to prepare anew the armada of the Groyne and follow out his enterprise. I wish that, besides Teobast, you had one or two others in Galitia, because it is important to know the designs of that armada.—From my house, 14 Jan. 1596.
Italian. Holograph. 1 p. (173. 12.)
Sir Horatio Palavicino to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596-7, Jan. 15.Is glad the pain in his arm is better. Now he knows the Queen's pleasure, will write at once to his friend at Roan to attempt some settlement with that Court for the payment to the Queen of the pay of the 2,000 foot and the 20,000l. lent. If it succeeds will be glad to have served her Majesty, far from thinking to compensate himself—her Majesty forgets that when in Germany he had 30,000l. of hers of which he rendered true account. Asks for a note of the amount of the pay of the 2,000 foot and their officers. Spoke to-day with M. Caron who is ready to assist him; but a letter from the Queen is necessary, which he now asks Cecil to procure.—From my house, 15 Jan. 1596.
Italian. Holograph. 1 p. (37. 71.)
The Chest.
1596-7, Jan. 15.A list of names, with sums varying from 6l. to 286l. opposite them, endorsed, “The true state of the chest as the same was found by auditor Neale, auditor Sutten, and others, thereto appointed, the xvth day of January 1596,” viz. :—
Bills taken in April and May 1596.—Anth. Morler “per a reaste” 41l., (fn. 2) the same 24l., the same 167l., Hastings Belgrave 26l., John Pasfield 43l., Wm. Elkinton “per a reaste” 20l., Thos. Grymes 36l., Baldwin Dirhame 91l., Ant. Key 95l., Fernando Clutterbooke 176l., Parnell Towerson 39l.
Bills taken in August and September 1596.—Rog. Oldfielde 45l., Rob. Carr 43l., Thos. Ofleye 112l., Roland Odell 41l., Ric. Stapers 97l., Wm. Greenwell 37l., Ric. Corken 38l., Ant. Skinner 23l.
Bills taken in October 1596.—John Alsop 166l., Thos. Talbot 92l., John Heaton 39l., Thos. Lowe 179l., Thos. Smythe 49l., Ric Morcocke 156l., Wm. Higgs 286l., Wm. Walmesleye 231l., Thos. Hayes 227l., Hen. Rowe 88l., the same 70l., Robt. Taylor 143l., Giles Howland 87l., Hen. Billingsley 112l., Edw. Quarles 126l., John Leake 39l., Jas. Traves 52l., Wm. Rogers 73l., the same 75l., John Wilkes 85l., Geo. Huxley 136l., Thos. Bennett 35l., Edm. Wolverstone 13l., Robt. Towersone 14l., Wm. Stone 163l., Thos. Garrawaye 17l., Robt. Brooke 144l., Leonard Hallydaye 71l., Ric. Bowdler, two bills, 112l., Wm. Bowser 129l., Thos. Bennett 192l., Martin Billingsley 153l., Robt. Harryson 25l., Thos Wrighte 26l., Andrew Forsland 37l., Thos. Franclyn 240l., Wm. Massame 70l., Cuthb. Martyne 75l., Fras. Smaleman 73l., Ant. Key 68l., Ric. Ven 212l., Wm. Poynter 35l., Wm. Freeman, two bills, 167l., Fernando Clutterbooke 151l., John Barefoote, 56l., Barth. Barnes 164l., Nich. Wheler 7l., Giles Perslowe 38l., Ric. Shepharde 50l., Wm. Poynter 73l., Leonard Hallydaye 31l., Wm. Hallydaye 160l., Fernando Clutterbooke 131l., Ralph Ashley 10l., Andrew Banninge 32l., John Bonner 18l., Hugh Morrall 38l., John Quarles 274l., John Barefoote 22l., Hen. Andersone 17l., Ric. Wyche 52l., Timothy Glover 6l., Thos. Hayes 13l., Robt. Mydnall 25l., Thos. Dobson, unsubscribed, 17l.
Total of bills, 7,189l. 19s. 1d.
Money in chest, 431l. 2s. 5d.
1 p. (37. 72.)
Sir Griffin Markham to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 15.Has been here almost six weeks. Hoped not to have staid long after Mr. Gorge was gone; but he has been a fortnight at liberty and Markham has still no comfort but Cecil's promise not to forget him.—From the Fleet, 15 Jan.
Signed :—Gri. Markhame.
Endorsed :—1596. 1 p. (37. 73.)
Arthur Gregory to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 16.After long attending Mr. Attorney's opportunity for the perusing of his warrant for the Queen's grant, obtained by Cecil's means, Mr. Attorney said he was commanded “not to pass any concealments; among which he interpreted my suit to be in nature, though in deed it concerneth traitors and is in another kind.” Begs him to satisfy Mr. Attorney or else move the Queen for the proceeding of the matter, for “I have in myself to do her Majesty especial service in such sort as all our ingeners [engineers] never dreamed of the like.” Desires him to accept a present of a “portable counting house,” with presses for papers, and a coach like the one he intends for Cecil's father, which “shall pass all other, especially for ease”; and to see to this matter lest “after I have now with expense brought things to ripeness, both her Majesty and myself may lose the benefit, and traitors and felons only carry the profit and prosecute mischief with the means.”—My poor house, Sunday morning.
Signed. Endorsed :—16 Jan. 1596. 1 p. (37. 74.)
George Peckham to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 16.His lands and living have, as Cecil knows, been “extended” this 12 years past in respect of a bond he made to the Queen for 6,500l., parcel of the debt of 26,000l. owed to her Majesty by Thomas Gardener, sometime one of the Tellers of the Exchequer. Has in consequence lived upon the benevolence of friends, but, they growing weary of the burden, he has been in great extremity these last two years; and having been sick ever since Whitsuntide is compelled to sell the apparel off his own back and his wife's, and the bed he lies on, and has kept this Christmas more like Lent. Begs for help.—16 Jan., '96.
Signed. 1 p. (37. 75.)
Sir Griffin Markham to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 16.Has written to the other Councillors who committed him, but they say it only rests in Cecil. There is no one he would rather be bound to. Has been here six weeks “and the term groweth on,” and his affairs are left unsettled.—From the Fleet, 16 Jan.
Signed :—Gri. Markhame.
Endorsed :—1596. 1 p. (37. 76.)
Sir Ed. Norreys to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 16.The season of the year coming on breeds occasion of new matters and men begin to hearken after the wars again.
The troops are marched towards Braband and Hulst, so that every body that way is upon his guard, the whilst there is exceeding great provision of bread and all sorts of munition at St. Omers, some say for Ostend, others to victual a fleet which is looked for to arrive at Calleys.
The Spaniards are likely to mutiny in Calleys. It was once begun but the hanging of three appeased it. Now again the governor hath sent to the Court that unless order be taken for their present pay there will be no remedy. He keeps his house and stirs not abroad until he have answer from the Court. The mutiny of Calleys will be far more dangerous than of other places, for in other places they do commonly make the towns and the country about them to pay them, but at Calleys there is nothing neither within nor without.
At Ipre also the Spaniards are likely to mutiny; all soldiers are generally unpaid and yet the Cardinal maketh great new levies of men. He saith he will never cut his beard nor his head until he have Ostend, but I hope by the Grace of God to see him ruin his army before it and your Lordship to have the honour.
I wrote to the States to send back the three companies of English but they write they will send three Dutch in their places. I refer unto your wisdom to advise what shall be fittest for Her Majesty's service.—Ostend, this xvi Jan. 1596.
P.S.—Here great joy for the likelihood of a truce with France for twelve years.
Holograph. 3 pp. (173. 13.)
Filippo Corsini to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596-7, Jan. 16/26.Understands Cecil has sent for him. Has just begun to go abroad, after a long sickness, and fears to go by water “for taking of cold” and is too weak to go by land. Engelbert says Cecil would speak about John Baptista Justinianye's matter. “I delivered unto him by exchange for Venice, certain months past, xijc ducats, who promised me that I should lose nothing by him so that I would favour and help him to come to an agreement with the rest of his creditors, which I did, as he well knoweth, in Sir Horatio Pallavicino his house.” Afterwards we differed about the rate of exchange and agreed to commit the matter, which was delayed by his going to Middelborow, to the arbitration of two Italian merchants, with Alderman Low as “hompire.” After the writings and bonds for the compromise were made he refused it, so I sent him word by Francis Rizzo that he wronged me and that I would proceed against him by law.—London, 26 Jan. 1597.
Signed. 1 p. (48. 117.)
Sir Francis Vere to the Earl of Essex
1596-7, Jan. 17.“Most honourable, in my last I gave your Lordship to understand that his Excellency was minded to assail th'enemy lying in Tournhowlt, and now I will show unto your Honour the success he had in th'execution thereof. The 12th of this present, Gertruden-bergh being the rendezvous, there arrived from all parts to the number of 5,000 foot and 800 horse. The 13, by break of day, we began to march, drawing with us two demi-cannon and two field pieces, and the same night arrived at Rauell, short of Tournhowlt one league. There by our espial it was told us that th'enemy knew not of our being so near. Most of the night was spent in consultation; in th'end it was resolved to show ourselves on the passage to Herentaulx, being the way of their retreat, with purpose if they left their quarter to be in the head of them, if they abode it to plant the cannon and dislodge them. At the dawn we marched and our vanguard hastened to get the passage of a narrow bridge half way betwixt the quarters; which gotten, and the troop put in order, some horse were sent to go [i]nto the enemy's quarter to learn what they did. Who presently returned word that th'enemy was marched the way to Herrentaulx and that his rearguard was in sight. Hereupon all the horse advanced and our foot followed with the most speed they could. A musket shot from their quarter we found their rearguard standing to countenance some few of their men who were appointed to break a bridge by which they had passed, and by which only we could follow them. I had the leading of the vanguard with 1,600 of my countrymen and 500 Dutch. With some few shot that could soonest arrive th'enemy was beaten from the bridge and the same taken, of which there remained no more than to carry a man abreast. When one hundred musketeers were past we began to follow th'enemy and presently fell in skirmish with them that made the retreat; which we did the more boldly for that the ground being inclosures covered our weakness and assured us from any sudden attempt of theirs. My lord governor of Vlyshyng, with 30 or 40 gentlemen and officers a horseback, countenanced those few foot in so good sort that th'enemy proffered not so much as one charge. Thus we followed th'enemy very near three hours with a very small number, the speed of th'enemy and badness of the passage makingi it impossible for our troops of foot to overtake us. During this time by many messagers we advertised his Excellency that if he would send forward his horse he might have a fair victory, if not th'enemy would be soon in safety. At length he gave a good part of the horse to the Count Hollocke to go before, and with the rest he followed. And now th'enemy having gotten into a heath, both the troops of our horse appeared. Th'enemy kept near the edge of the heath with their horse on the outside and marched in their battalions, not ranged in one front but in length, the first of Almaynes, that in the middle Walloons, and the last was that of the Neapolitans, which made the retreat. Our foot followed them in the skirt of the heath. The Count Hollocke won the flank of them, making towards their horse, and his Excellency followed directly with his troop. Sir Robert Sydney and myself, by reason that we still entertained th'enemy, being nearer than the rest, might perceive that they made great haste to get the entry of a strait at the end of the heath, which gotten they were safe, being now not far from Herentaulx; which was the cause that Sir Robert Sydney hastened to the Count Hollocke to acquaint him therewith and to desire him to charge. Meanwhiles I went also to his Excellency to the same effect; who appointed Edmondes the Scotchman to follow me with three cornet of horse. By that time I was drawn near unto th'enemy Sir Robert Sydney returned and I perceived the Count Hollocke to make towards th'enemy's horse, which fled. He pursued not them far but turned towards the flank of the Almaynes, at which time Sir Robert Sydney and myself charging the Neapolitans, at one instant their vanguard and rearward were assailed and put in rout, and the [mid-ba]ttle kept them company. The Neapolitans keeping together were in a manner all slain on the place. Of the rest there escaped very few, for of 4,000 foot which by their own confession they acknowledge 2,400 were left dead in the field and 600 taken prisoners, amongst which are 16 captains. Their commander, the Count of Warras, killed in the charge, all their ensigns taken to the number of 39. In the following of the chase their horsemen made head and put ours to retreat, but in the end being charged they were put clean out of the field with the loss of a cornet. Their troops were these, the regiments of the Marquis of Trenigo, that of the Count Sulst, of La Barlotte, and Assencourtt, accounted the best on that side except the Spaniards. Their horse were the companies of Don Juan de Cordowa, Don Alonzo de Mondragon de Guzman, Grobendencke and another. The same night we returned to Tournhowlt and the next day, after some few cannon shot, the castle was yielded by composition. From thence the army returned to Gertrudenberghe, whence every troop was sent to his gariison. His Excellency in this action, both for his care in assembling the forces and directing from time to time as also for the great testimony he hath given of his valour, hath much increased his reputation even amongst us that believed exceeding well of him before, and we are all in a good hope that this favourable encounter will be seconded with some attempt of moment whilst the Cardinal strengtheneth himself again. And as for the enterprise of Callis there was never a fitter time.”—Breda, 17 Jan. 1596.
P.S.—“In this service we lost no man of reckoning, nor above 20 of all sorts, which being rare I would not keep from your Honour.”
Holograph, 4 pp. (37. 77.)
The Same to the Same.
1596-7, Jan. 17.To the same effect. Additional details given, such as that 1,600 English of the Queen's garrison and the writer's regiment were engaged, and that there arrived not 500 of the enemy at Herrentaulx towards which they were marching and from which they were not half a league distant when they broke. Returned to Tournowlt and summoned the castle the same night and were denied, but next morning, when his Excellency brought up the demi cannon and field pieces, they surrendered on composition.—Breda, 17 Jan. 1596.
Holograph. 4 pp. (37. 78.)
John Daniel to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596-7, Jan. 17/27.Yesterday brought to Cecil's house Mr. Bridges and John Muchie the post, but he being busy in the forenoon and afternoon they could not come to him. They are to be there again this afternoon; and as Mr. Bridges is to impart to Cecil the present state of Calais and of a ship that is presently bound thence into Spain, and the post is to deliver a matter concerning her Majesty's service, prays they may see him.—27 January, 1597.
Holograph. ½ p. (38. 4.)
George Gilpin to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 17Details of Count Maurice's victory on the 13th (see above).
God be praised for all (Whose mercies are infinite) and make us thankful! Count Hohenlo, who was on his way as far as Nimueghen, understanding of the horsemen's sending for so as he could not have them for his convoy to Wesel, changed former purpose, and coming with the troops of horse to Gertrudenbergh was at the service, and so used himself, as did all the other chiefs, that they have deserved honour and praise. This blow will touch the Cardinal shrewdly, five regiments being thus beaten : and these men are the safer, though it should chance to freeze, he being disappointed of those forces he kept of purpose in Brabant to have made incursions, and now must make levies, for from the frontiers of France to defend Arthoys and Henewer there can be none spared : and, if the spring come in, there will no doubt be some other service against a chief town attempted like enough to speed if the King of France keep the Walloon quarters waking. To-morrow Count Maurice is looked for, when, if other matter fall out worth Essex's knowledge, it shall be advertised.—From the Haeghe, this 17th of January 1596, in baste.
P.S.—There was of late a ship of Rotterdam, called the Facon, whereof is master one William Williams, and come out of Spain with wines and fruits, taken near the Isle of Wight and brought to London. She was suffered by the States to go thither to discover the particulars and certainty of the King of Spain's army which is there preparing. The States now write in the man's favour, and Gilpin adding his letters hopes that the ship may be released without charge, knowing the merchant to be usually employed by them for all intelligencies, wherein he hath done good service.
Signed. Seal. 2 pp. (173. 15.)
William Downhal to Edward Reynolds.
[1596-7 ?] Jan. 18.Describes a journey in the Eastern counties to buy horses for my lord (the Earl of Essex). At Norwich he was at the meeting of the justices but gained little from them. Sir Chr. Hedon was, however, very kind, and honest Wat Gibbone's father and his son showed him much kindness. Sir Edwin Riche, Mr. Pinchebacke and Mr. Kempt also were anxious to serve my Lord; but horses were too dear. Went thence to Berie on Monday last, to a meeting of all the justices; who merely asked him to dine with them and paid 8d. for his dinner. Sir Clement Higham showed him 5 or 6 geldings, but to buy them at the prices asked would have been the part of a fool or a knave. Was in despair till he came to Cambridge, where Dr. Tindale's brother took great trouble to seek horses for him, and also lent him 50l. Descauts upon his kindness and asks that he may be repaid his 50l. when he comes to London about Wednesday next. Commendations to Sir Gillie Mericke and all other friends.—Cambridge, 18 Jan.
Addressed :—“Cousin.”
Endorsed :—“Downhall to Mr. Reynolds.”
Holograph. 3 pp. (48. 9.)
Sir Robert Sidney to the Earl of Essex
1596-7, Jan. 10 (fn. 3) .Mons. de Buzemnel is come to Midleborrow and will take the next passage into France. He says the King his master had written to the Queen to send Essex into France and that he would meet him at Dieppe to confer of the course of the war for next season. Also that the King had written to Count Morris to come too, who “had excused it, alledging that there was no man of commandment in the country, if any occasion should rise, the Count of Hollock and the Count William being both in Germany and the Count of Solms discharged, and that though the journey into France were perhaps easy, yet in respect of the wind, the coming back might be uncertain.” With this excuse Buzemnel professes himself glad to go for private affairs and see the Court; but a good report from the Hague says the real reason of his going is “that the King had not ratified what had been concluded between the D. of Bouillon and the States, which did trouble the States and the French ministers very much at the Hague; and that the King was grown into jealousies with the D. of Bouillon of his too much credit in these countries, and therefore had desired the Count's coming into France, that in the ratifying of the league he might do somewhat himself, and not all seem to have been effected by the said Duke alone.” Buzemnel said the Duke “was not well with the King”, but gave no particulars. For news of Holland refers to Sir Fr. Vere and Mr. Gilpin. The enemy's troops at Turnhaut are there still. This day “I am to agree with a certain fellow who shall continually advertise me how things stand at Brussels. The man hath wit enough and means to come into good places; all is if he will be honest. If your L. will have him serve you he shall; otherwise I will entertain him till I see what milk he will give. For myself I am going to-morrow towards his Excellency. He hath sent for me very earnestly to come with 300 men to St. Gertrudenberg to him; but what his purpose is I cannot tell till I have been with him.” His Excellency writes that the matter will not hold them above four days.—Flushing, 10 January 1596.
Endorsed :—20 (sic) January.
Holograph. Seal. 3 pp. (37. 81.)
Count Maurice of Nassau to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 19/29.Monsieur.—Hitherto there has little presented itself in these Provinces to advertise you of, except that some days since the enemy caused the regiment of Neapolitans and those of the Count de Sulz, Baron d'Assincourt and de la Berlotte to lodge at Turnhout, which is a town in the open country of Brabant, with intent, as they gave out, to invade these countries, either by the places which he expected to be master of this winter, or else to attack some town on our frontiers and carry it by assault. Whereupon, considering the prejudice and danger which might accrue therefrom, I determined as far as possible to prevent it. To this end I caused 5,000 infantry and 800 cavalry to assemble with all diligence, with which I departed for Gertrudenberg the 23 of this month, carrying with me 4 pieces of artillery (because I understood that the enemy were intrenched) and came to lodge a small league from the said town. The enemy, being advertised by their spies of my coming and that I had artillery with me, abandoned the place by night and entered a heath, taking their route towards Herenthals; when seeing them the next morning at such a distance that I could not overtake them with the infantry, I pursued them with the cavalry, with which I attacked and beat them in such a manner that more than 2,000 remained on the field, and [we have] 500 prisoners. Those which were retired upon the tower which is adjoining to the said town of Turnhout, understanding this defeat, surrendered on a summons. Messrs. Sidney and Vere did the office of brave captains in the charge. I have gotten 38 colours and one standard. I return thanks to God for this good success and the rather as I think her Majesty will receive singular contentment from it, and that it will prove of service to her affairs. This, Monsieur, is what I have to present you with for the new year.—From the Hague, 29 January 1597.
Signed. French. 3 pp. (38. 8.)
Annexed, Modern translation of the above. 1¼ pp. (38. 9.)
Another translation, with many alterations, and several words introduced in brackets to complete the sense; the place of writing being given as Sluys.
1 p. (49. 4.)
Edward Stanhope to Sir Robert Cecil, Principal Secretary.
1596-7, Jan. 20.Begs favour for the bearer, Mr. Levett, now mayor of Doncaster, who comes up to the term on behalf of the corporation, who are sued for lands by Mr. Worall, whose ancestors rose by means of trade in Doncaster and have been mayors of the town. “The soil of the waste and liberties in Wheatley now sued for by Mr. Worall at the common law have been parcel of the soke of Doncaster time out of mind of man; yet he, being matched in kindred and alliances with many of the best men in the shire, and somewhat given to contention, presumeth to challenge it to be his inheritance, which his ancestors never did before him.” As the country are, in trials, greatly given to favour their landlords, the corporation desire that the lord Treasurer will enjoin Worrall not to prosecute the matter by the common law at the assizes until it be heard in the Exchequer Chamber, where the Queen being interested in it as affecting the fee farm of the town, it ought to be heard. They are emboldened to ask this by the favour they found when Sir James Croftes' followers would have found most of their lands (belonging to their fee farm) concealed.” Writes this as he is Recorder of the town.—York, 20 Jan. 1596.
Holograph. Seal. 1 p. (37. 80.)
Captain John Chamberlain to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 20.On Wednesday, according to our English account the 12th of January, we found our army at Gyttryngberg which was appointed our rendezvous. We esteemed it to consist of 5,000 foot and 800 horse. On Thursday we marched onwards towards Turneholt, every soldier carrying 3 days' victual with him. We had with us 2 culverins and 2 demi-culverins. That night we marched 20 English miles, which was very much, the way being extreme wet and foul, and our men laden with their arms and victuals. We lodged in the field within 3 English miles of Turneholt where the enemy lay. That night the Count of Warras, Colonel-General of those troops and master of the ordnance of the King's army here, was informed of our approach, and, until he heard by his espions that we brought artillery, he intended to have made good the place, as we have since understood by some prisoners. He made countenance to his troops not to remove but secretly commanded all the wagons [that] might be got to be provided. At 12 o'clock that night he commanded all the baggage to be laden. At 2 the baggage went away. Between 6 and 7 the next morning he dislodged with his whole troops, his infantry consisting of four Regiments; the Marquis of Frenye, then at Brussels, Colonel of the Italians; Mons. Labberlott, Colonel of one regiment of Walloons; Pedro de Askott [Aeschott], Colonel of the Almains; Mons. le Cokill, of another regiment of Walloons; Nicholas de Bastion, commander of the Cavalry. We finding them gone at Turneholt and understanding by the inhabitants the time they rose, our horse advanced forwards. Our English, having that day the vanguard, was commanded to make a halt by Synisco Serjaint, Major of our army, which was the cause we came not so timely up to have made an end of their whole troops. The horse found the enemy within half an English mile, busy in breaking a bridge to hinder our following them, but, some of our musketeers coming up, they were beaten thence, having before, much to their advantage, broken the bridge in such sort that our foot men could pass but 2 and 2. Their army retired in very good order in maintaining continual “eskarmouches” with ours, until they attained to a large heath, where Sir Francis Vere, our colonel, with Sir Robert Sydney and some other on horseback, together with Captain Edmonds, a Scottish man, commander of a troop of horse, much against the allowance of his Excellency and the Count Hollock, charged one of their wings of musketeers in flank, with that resolution that they scattered. His Excellency, seeing them engaged, appointed Count Hollock to second them, which he did in charging the other wing of the battle. By this the enemy's horse made shew to charge the Dutch troops of horse, which made them, not without some fear, retire. When even then our English troops had attained the heath in two battalions, the one consisting of the companies from Flushing, Ostend and the Brill, the other of eight of our regiment, which view so amazed the enemy, thinking all the army had been at hand that even then they lost their spirit, when, being hotly charged again by Sir Robert Sydney and my Colonel, even upon the colours of the “battaile” of pikes, they disordered presently, and every man sought his own safety except the Count of Warras or Laverall, who died resolutely in the head of the pikes; the whole regiment of the Italians was overthrown and upon them the greatest fury was spent, for most of them perished having that day the rear-guard. Their whole loss consists of these particulars as I can understand : 2,000 slain, prisoners 450, whereof 10 captains and 20 lieutenants and ancients, and the young Count Mansfield who carried the colours of Pedro de Askott. The sergeant-major of the Italians was taken, but hath made an escape, 500 hurt that fled, as the Prince of Orange's trumpet reported; 38 ancients and one cornet taken. Of ours 20 men slain and not so many hurt; and undoubtedly, but that night grew on, we had taken all their baggage, which was much, and put to the sword the greatest part of all those troops. At our return to Turneholt the next morning we took in the castle, after the cannon had played it shot, upon condition the governor should depart with bag and baggage. We left for the guard thereof one company of Walloons.—From Delphe, after our English account, the 20th of January '96.
Signed. Seal. 2½ pp. (59. 7.)
Captain Edward Wylton to the Earl of Essex.
1596-7, Jan. 20.Not long since, the King sent order to our Colonel to remove from Aumall to St. Valeries and Cratoy. Monsieur Civill is appointed our commissary and mustereth us according to the instructions. Sir Thomas lieth in St. Valeries, my Colonel in Cratoy. Cratoy is a little fisher town over the Somme, right against St. Valerics, walled with a little bad wall easy to be blown down with every petart, and I think had been ere now surprised but that the enemy's garrison is so far off. Hedom is the next town the enemy holdeth : it lieth six leagues from Cratoy. They are not very strong within the town and yet they have braved them of Cratoy very often before our coming, and have once or twice driven away the most part of their cows. I think they mean not to trouble us much by reason of our strength and their long retreat. But yet are not we free from enemies. We fight daily against cold, hunger and the infections of the country; everything is exceeding dear with us; we have no wood but that we fetch three leagues off. The plague is grown so familiar to us that to get 6d. the soldier feareth not to ransack both the house and the party infected, and we have not yet to my knowledge passed any town or village uninfected. But that which is most strange of all, I have not heard of any soldier amongst us that hath died of the plague, although very few can say that they have not been in the places of contagion.
The King hath lately been jealous of Monsieur de Villars but concealed it until a means was found to fit both their humours : for Monsieur de Villars the better to give colour to his designs contrived a marriage with Madam Elizabeth, a sister of the King's mistress, and the King, under colour of going to solemnise the marriage at Hance, hath both assured that town and the rest of his governments and removed from him the tutors of his evil counsels. What hath been the conclusion in this last assembly at Roan, I doubt you understand from others that are able more fully to declare it than myself; only it is publicly known that this great bruit of the peace with Spain is consumed into fume, and that the King himself and next him the Marshall de Biron and Buillon were the only causes thereof; and that there are great sums of money granted to the King for the maintenance of his wars, wherein he now means to proceed with some more royalty than heretofore he hath been able to do.
Monsieur St.. Luke hath this day passed the Somme with his troops of horse and foot and is marching to Bulloyn and Muntrell, for those are the garrisons assigned him by the King.—Cratoy, xx Januarii, '96
Holograph. Seal. 2 pp. (173. 16.)
Adam [Loftus], Lord Chancellor of Ireland, to Sir Robert Cecil.
1596-7, Jan. 20.Has received his letter concerning the couches, that by polishing them here they might be made more portable than otherwise they would be, and, if any ships should go hence to Chester, they might be sent thither, but rather to London if any were bound that way from hence.
They might have been transported to Chester at every passage, but what a trouble it would be to convey them thence, especially by land. And now that the Lord Deputy and Council have written to Lord Burghley that ships might be laden from London with grain for Her Majesty's army in Ireland (who otherwise will perish for want of food), and have despatched this bearer to attend that charge, he could wish (unless Cecil have some present use for them) he might send them at the return of these London ships back again, otherwise he can at all times send them to Chester. And because they must be only for ballast in the vessel, he has forborne the polishing of them.—Dublin, the 20 January 1596.
Signed, Ad. Dublin Cane. 1 p. (173. 17.)


1 Said to have been married “about 1591.”—Doyle.
2 Shillings and pence are here, for brevity, omitted.
3 Misplaced chronologically.