41. The Bishop Of Aquila to the King.
On the 27th and 28th ultimo I wrote to your Majesty. About
three days since Thomas Randolph, brother of the Randolph one of
your Majesty's servants, arrived here from France and at once went
to see the Queen. He told her how the Dauphin had ordered the
arms of England to be emblazoned with his own in many places, and
it was said he would shortly proclaim himself king of England.
Randolph says that after the Queen had heard all about it, she told him
that she would take a husband who would give the king of France
some trouble, and do him more harm than he expected. She gave
him 200 ducats and ordered him to return to France immediately.
He was to leave last night.
I hear that the duke of Chatelherault is in England and very near
London. The day before yesterday Cecil after having been in and
out several times with advices for the Queen left Greenwich suddenly
with only two servants. I have been unable to find out whither he
has gone although I have tried to do so in several ways but the
accounts all differ. I am sure he has gone to speak with the Duke,
and we shall soon have news of this marriage, for it is not to
believed that they would have received the Duke at such a time
this and endanger their friendship with the French unless the thing
were settled, and he was to be something more than a guest.
The person who says the Duke is here is John Alee, a connection
of the Queen, who is leaving for Italy tomorrow, that he may not
see what is going on here. He is ordered by the Queen to visit tthe
duchess of Lorraine on his way and tell her that if she will come
to England the Queen will be glad to receive her and will be grateful
for the visit. I have not been able to discover whether the invitation
is sent out of friendship or for some private business, but I get my
information from John Alee himself.
They say that the Queen has news of religious disturbances in the
North Country where they refuse to receive the new church service.
I know for certain that in the diocese of Winchester they have not
received it and will not take the oath, and that all is in confusion.
They dare not press them. There is no news from Scotland, as they
say there is a prohibition against writing or travelling into England.
These people are hurrying on the collection of money and are
pressing for anticipated payments if only for a month before they
are due, a sure sign that they think they may want money before
The French ambassador is anxious. He has sent a gentleman
France as well as two or three couriers in the last few days, and he
sends people to me to learn what is going on here and to know
what your Majesty thinks of this Queen. He is surprisd that she
has not sent an ambassador to your Majesty's court, and he announces
the great severity of his King against the heretics. He even says
that his King wants to burn all Geneva to gain the goodwill of the
They have taken the bishop of Lincoln out of the Tower a
was very ill.—London, 1st July 1559.
42. Count De Feria to the Bishop Of Aquila.
His Majesty is about to leave, and promises before his departure
next Wednesday to decide your Lordship's affairs. I will also
endeavour to get him to resolve what is to be done with those
people (the English). It is only with great trouble that he can be
got to decide anything. I believe that a more wretched life is
before the Queen than she wots of. I am only sorry that it is not
we who are to give her the purge, but those scoundrels shall pay
for it.—Brussels, 7th July 1559.
43. The King to the Bishop Of Aquila.
All your letters to 28th ultimo and 1st instant received. I thank
you for informing me so minutely of all that occurs, and desire you
to continue to do so. I have not replied owing to my being greatly
occupied, and I now very briefly touch upon the various points in
your letters, particularly about the Bishops, as they must be kept in
mind since they are steadfast. Respecting the marriage of the
Queen with the Archduke there is nothing more to add, as you will
have heard from Martin de Anda that the Emperor wishes to send
a resident ambassador, even although nothing else may come of it.
You will try to keep up the negotiations as you have been instructed,
and will let me know what else you learn about the
duke of Chatelherault. Respecting religion, which is the principle
thing of all I note what you say, and I greatly regret that the
danger becomes daily greater, and that the Queen's affairs are in
so bad a state that grave risk is caused both by the way justice
is administered and by the conduct of religious matters the
Catholics in the country being so numerous. Considering all this,
and seeing of how little avail have been our kindness and compliments
to the Queen, the favours she knows she has received
from us, the demonstrations of love and friendship we have made
to her, and the good offices of the Count de Feria in frequently
pointing out to her in our name the evil course she was pursuing,
which would lead her and her country to ruin, we have decided
to approach her in a more pressing fashion than hitherto. Don
Juan de Ayala is going over to fetch the Countess de Feria, (fn. 1) and
the pressure, we think, will have more effect from him coming,
as he does straight from here, than if it were brought to bear
through you alone who are resident there, and I therefore write
a very short letter to the Queen accrediting him, and have ordered
him to be instructed to go and see her with you and tell her
that she well knows the love and goodwill I have always borne
her and have proved whenever opportunity has offered, and, in
virtue of this, I cannot refrain from telling her clearly that her
affairs, from what can be heard on all hands, are in a very bad
and dangerous way, and the changes she has made are rendering
the maintenance of her royal power extremely doubtful. I therefore
beg her to consider the matter deeply, and, not only for her own
sake do I ask her to do this, but also because I must say that the
danger which will arise to me from her proceedings, if she do not
change her ways very shortly, will force me to take counsel as to
my action to avoid harm to my own dominions which will certainly
be damaged without any advantage to her. This, in substance, is
what I wish him to say to her, and he is to communicate it to
you before he does so. As I have said, you will go together and
I shall be glad for you to aid and forward him all you can in
order that the Queen may hear him at a fitting season and be
told with due calmness and courtesy, without any appearance of
roughness or threat, that if she wants to go to ruin herself and
refuses to change her ways and look to her kingdom and her
safety we must take our own course to avoid falling into the same
trouble. You will inform me of what she says and how she takes
it without waiting for Don Juan de Ayala's return, as I desire to
know at once. As I have to send you another letter replying to
the other matte's mentioned by you, and to tell you what decision
has been arrived at in your own affairs, I only now say in this
that I have ordered to be enclosed herewith an advice I have
recently received from France, by which you will see the demonstration
the Most Christian King is making against the heretics.
This for your information and to be made use of when you see
an opportunity.—9th July 1559.
Document endorsed : "England. To the bishop of Aquila from
Ghent, 9th July 1559, by Don Juan de Ayala"—from the King.
44. Count De Feria to the Bishop Of Aquila.
Gamboa (fn. 2) arrived here on the 6th and brought me your letter.
Whatever we may do or say we can get no further than the
instructions given to Don Juan de Ayala, which will have as little
effect as what has been done before. About your Lordship's affairs
we have had the King in labour for a month but have not managed
to deliver him yet. He promised us yesterday that he would
despatch the matter at once. I do not fail to put before him all
the urgency and necessity for decision, but I find no more movement
in other things than in this. I think surely, however, the decision
will go by the next opportunity or at least a grant in aid. The
king of France is in no danger and with hope that his eye may be
saved. I should not be glad of his death, as it would, I think, be
injurious to religious matters in every respect. (fn. 3) His Majesty is
certain to approve about Guido Cavalcanti, and I will be his friend
if he acts properly.
The bearer will tell you the news better than I can write them.—
Ghent, 9th July 1559.
45. The Bishop Of Aquila to the King.
On the 6th instant I received your Majesty's letter of 26th ultimo
ordering me to recover the collar of the Golden Fleece worn by King
Henry and send it to Ghent. The letters were delayed and these
people were some time making up their mind to give me the collar
which I have consequently not been able to send until now. They
have also given me a cloak which I send with it.
I have since received another letter from your Majesty, dated
9th instant instructing me what to do when Don Juan de Ayala
arrives, which instructions shall be carried out unless in view of the
death of the king of France (of which the Queen received news to-night)
Don Juan should think well to suspend action until receiving fresh
orders from your Majesty. The joy of the Queen was very great,
and she at once sent the news to the Emperor's ambassador.
I conversed yesterday with some of the Frenchmen here, and
they confess that the Scotch affair is lost. They have news that the
Queen Regent is in a corner awaiting succour, that they have
attacked and taken the town of St. John (Perth) and that the whole
country is up. The question is not religion but rebellion, and, the
King being dead, the remedy is difficult, particularly as things here
religious and otherwise will get much worse if they are allowed,
to have their way. I cannot help telling your Majesty how greatly
many of the godly here and persons well versed in public affairs
are astonished to see that this Queen is allowed to proceed with her
designs to the manifest peril to the faith and the neighbouring
kingdoms. In six months she has revived heresy and encourages it
everywhere to such an extent that it is recovering furiously all
the credit it had lost for years past. I well know that this question
will be duly considered in your Majesty's council, and I only venture
to say what I do in order that your Majesty may know the opinion
of the people here. At one time they expected the remedy from your
Majesty's hand, but had recently turned towards the king of France
for it. Now that he fails them it seems that all must fall on your
Majesty's shoulders again, although at the same time, his death
greatly facilitates redress as no other parties exist now in the country
but Catholics and heretics, and no dependence will be placed on the
new king of France for the present, your Majesty being now the
only hope of the godly and dread of the wicked if the latter are not
allowed time to meet and weaken the Catholic party. I pray your
Majesty to pardon this digression, but as I have heard these views
so often and from so many people, I have presumed to set them forth,
for if I failed to do so I fear I should be wanting in my duty to
your Majesty. I have been unable to learn anything more of the
duke of Chatelherault, but the journeys Cecil sometimes makes,
wither no one knows, only that he does not go where he announces,
make me suspect, that the Duke cannot be far off, and I should not be
surprised if he were in Dover castle where the governor is a brother-in-law (fn. 4)
of that Randolph who I believe came with him hither. I
have not dared to enquire too closely so as to avoid arousing the
Queen's suspicion, which would not be perhaps convenient. There
is nothing new in the Emperor's business. His Majesty wrote a very
good letter to the Queen expressing his satisfaction at her resolve
about the marriage, and again offering his services, saying that for
other affairs he desired to have an ambassador here, and in the
meanwhile the present one should remain. She was pleased at this,
but gave her usual answer about the marriage.
They deprived the archbishop of York and the bishop of Ely last
Friday. He of Ely had words with Bacon and told him that if the
Queen continued as she had begun to be ruled by those about her,
both she and her kingdom would be ruined.
A battle has been fought between the earl of Desmond and the
earl of Clanrikarde (Clikharn) in Ireland with much slaughter,
and Clanrikarde taken prisoner.—London, 12th July 1559.
B. M. MS.,
46. The Bishop Of Aquila to the King.
I am assured that the Queen understood the king of France was
intriguing against the country, and intended to deprive her of it,
and I had an idea that the bishop of Ely was concerned in this from
certain indications. Nothing, however, is certain here, and Paget is
suspected ; he will get into trouble if it be true. The death of the
King they think puts them out of apprehension, and in order not to
cause a disturbance they have refrained from proceeding in the
matter till they know that your Majesty is in Spain. They are
always afraid that the Catholics here may obtain help. The idea is
that in September proceedings will be taken against many people.
I understand that the bishop of Llandaff, (fn. 5) who is a greedy old
man with but little learning, is wavering, and it is feared he may
take the oath, as he is wearing a bishop's garb again lately. I had
news of this and sent to visit him and console him as well as I could,
but he has given way notwithstanding. The rest of them are firm,
each in the place appointed for him, and they hope more than ever
in your Majesty.—London, 12th July 1559.
47. The Same to the Same.
Some days ago there arrived here in a lay habit a friar of
Mercy who calls himself Rodrigo Guerrero. He came to me and
wanted to make me believe that he came from Spain, and other
things which I saw were false, and as I thought him a suspicious
man I dismissed him and had him watched to see what he would do.
I heard that he went to the palace and often spoke to Cecil, and I
endeavoured to reassure him and get him to come and speak to me
again, which he did yesterday, and told me who he was, and how
being discontented with many things (which as I consider them
false and irrelevant I do not repeat) he had come here to join the
heretics, although he says that in his conscience he is not one, but
must become so for his livelihood, as they will give him a professorship
at Oxford where he can earn his living. I treated him
kindly and brought him here, and he says that if your Majesty will
order a warrant to be given to him so that neither the General
nor Provincial of his order, who are his enemies, shall punish him
or know of his doings, and you will grant him a perpetual pension
either in Barcelona, Granada, or Valladolid, he will go to Spain as
your Majesty has ordered. I have promised him to inform your
Majesty and would endeavour to induce your Majesty to listen to
his petition, and avoid his taking so bad a step as to become a
heretic. He was content with this and is somewhat reassured. I
do not know, but I take him to be a man of poor understanding.
In any case I do not wish him to remain here, as he would form a
school of Spaniards at Oxford, and would attract thither all the
good-for nothings of your Majesty's dominions to the great disservice
of God and your Majesty, and I therefore beg for instructions.—
London, 12th July 1559.
Note in the handwriting of Philip II. :—
Reply at once to the Bishop that he is to promise everything to this
friar Rodrigo Guerrero, and if he wants a warrant that he shall
have a very complete one. Ask him whether he would like to go
over in my fleet and a passage shall be given him, and if not he
shall have every favour he now requests as soon as he arrives in
Spain. In short, write in such a manner that he shall be induced
to go to Spain, and for the Bishop to be able to show him the letter
if be thinks fit.
48. The Bishop Of Aquila to the King.
Don Juan de Ayala arrived here yesterday, and hearing of the
death of the king of France he thinks well to await your Majesty's
orders before fulfilling his commission to the Queen, and he writes
to this effect to your Majesty. This courier is being despatched by
the Emperor's ambassador to advise his master that the Queen has
given him notice that the duke of Wittemburg was in league with
the French and had received money from the King in order to
obstruct the Emperor if he had commenced war to recover the
lands of the Empire which he claims. The Emperor is advised not
to trust the said Duke or send him as ambassador to France.
The Queen is sending Thomas Challoner as ambassador to your
Majesty. He leaves soon.—London, 13th July 1559.
49. The King to the Bishop Of Aquila.
I reply in a separate letter about Friar Rodrigo Guerrero written
purposely that you may show it to him if desirable, and by means
of it persuade him, in any case, to leave there and go to Spain and
so avoid the inconvenience you point out of his settling in England.
The less sense he displayed in his discourse the more necessary is it
that he should be got away, and you will use all and every means
in your power to persuade him to go ; and especially to take passage
in the fleet. If you cannot induce him to do this you must try at
all events to get him to Spain, and if he will not go without the
documents he asks for let me know and I will send them to you for
him. Do not let him stay on that account, and pray use the utmost
zeal and diligence, as your prudence and experience will show you
are necessary in this case.
It will be well also if you will draw up a statement of all that
has passed in conversation with him in the fullest detail, and
particularly what he may have said about the reasons why he went
to England and what his intention was. Send it to me separately
and let all letters on the subject be sent apart from other business,
as shall be mine in reply, the quality of this affair being such as to
make this needful.—Without date.
50. The King to the Bishop Of Aquila.
I note what you tell me about Friar Rodrigo Guerrero, of all of
which I approve, and I am very glad to hear that he has signified
his wish to go to Spain, as we have ordered, and will reside in
Barcelona, Valladolid or Granada on his being granted an income for
life and a license, so that neither the General nor Provincial of his
order may punish him or know of his actions. You have done well
in telling me of his need, and I shall be glad for him to go to Spain as
a sensible and religious man such as he ought to do, and I will do all he
asks of me, both as regards the General and Provincial, who shall not
proceed against him or know of his life, and also as to giving him an
honest and sufficient income in Castile or Andalucia in any part he
may choose, and you may promise and assure him in my name to
this effect, and urge him to come and embark in my fleet which is
now ready to accompany me to Spain, where a passage shall be given
him and all requisite for the voyage. If he wishes for a private
order of my own to free him from his enemies and provide him with
a livelihood and you advise me thereof, it shall be given to him as
soon as he arrives here, or it can be sent to you at once. My
departure being, please God, in August, get him to start at once.
The sooner the better.—Ghent, 17th July 1559.
51. The Count De Feria to the Bishop Of Aquila.
Yours of 12th instant received. Although I know his Majesty
has ordered the carrying out of what was agreed upon, I have not
seen the despatch, and I am now going to the palace to see it and
to find out whether any good is being done in your Lordship's
private affairs. Do not be astonished or angry at anything you
may see until we have tired the King out as he expects to be
tired out before he does anything, great or small. It is no good
saying any more about the voyage to Spain, for if the world
itself were to crumble there would be no change in that. I wish
my wife to come as soon as possible without seeing the Queen. I
cannot speak of other English affairs and do not want even to
think of them seeing the way his Majesty is treating them.—Ghent,
18th July 1559.
52. The King to the Bishop Of Aquila.
Yours of 12th and 13th instant received. You have done well in
advising me of events in England. You will learn by a letter
enclosed of the death of the king of France, which news will arrive
late, as you will have heard of it already, but I send it that you
may be kept well posted in all that happens.
I thank you for the points you set forth on English affairs, and
am carefully considering them in order to adopt the best course
under all circumstances. I am not without anxiety about them.
Respecting the question asked by you and Don Juan de Ayala as
to whether he should carry out the commission we gave him to the
Queen now that the king of France is dead, we have deeply considered
and have decided that it is now more necessary than ever, and that
the death of the King, far from being an obstacle, is an excellent
opportunity for fulfilling the instructions we gave to Don Juan, as is
also the accession of the new King, (fn. 6) who, as you know, has claims
to the English throne through his wife. This should make the
Queen and her friends more suspicious if they look at it as they
ought, and I have consequently ordered the present courier to be
sent back to you at once, with instructions to you to go with
Don Juan, as soon as you receive this, and perform the duty set
forth in our letter, you giving him such assistance as may be
necessary. I send with this the same orders to him, which please
hand to him, and let them be carried out at once, giving me full
particulars of how the Queen takes it, which it is necessary I should
The news about the duke of Wittemburg which the Emperor's
ambassador writes to his master does not seem to have much
foundation yet, but you do well to inform me of everything. You
will do the same about Scotch affairs, and will try to obtain
I have not been able to decide about your affairs, but will do so
soon. In the meanwhile I have ordered 1,000 crowns to be sent
you. Perhaps they will go by this opportunity, and if not then by
the next, so as not to detain this man, as it is most important that
the commission of Don Juan should be carried out at once.—Ghent,
18th July 1559.
B. M. M. S.,
53. The Bishop Of Aquila to the King.
I have lost all hope in the affairs of this woman. She is convinced
of the soundness of her unstable power, and will only see her error
when she is irretrievably lost. In religious matters she has been
saturated ever since she was born in a bitter hatred to our faith,
and her one object is to destroy it. If your Majesty were to give
her life and all in it, as you did once before, she would never be
more friendly than she is now, and she would, if she had the
power, sow heresy broadcast in all your Majesty's dominions
to-day, and set them ablaze without compunction. Besides this,
her language (learnt from Italian heretic friars who brought her up)
is so shifty that it is the most difficult thing in the world to
negotiate with her. With her all is falsehood and vanity.
54. The Same to the Same.
The last letters I wrote to your Majesty are dated 27th ultimo,
and since then Don Juan de Ayala will have arrived and informed
your Majesty of the state of affairs here. They are now carrying
out the law of Parliament respecting religion with great rigour,
and have appointed six visitors who examine all persons to whom
the law decrees that the oath has to be administered, and they
proceed against those who disobey. They have just taken away
the crosses, images, and altars, from St. Paul's and all the other
London churches, but encounter resistance as usual in the matter of
the oath. In all else they do as they please, but it is thought that
outside London they will not have it all their own way. They have
deprived the bishops of St. David's and Exeter this week, and the
bishop of Durham, a very aged and learned man, came up from his
diocese solely to tell the Queen what he thought about these affairs.
He showed her documents in the handwriting of king Henry against
the heresies now received, and especially as regards the sacraments,
and begged her, at least, to respect the will of her father if she did
not conform to the decrees of the church ; but it was all of no avail,
and they only laugh at him as he might with better reason laugh at
them. They tell me that this Bishop will remain steadfast, and his
opinion has much influence and weight in his diocese.
The new Bishops complain because they do not give them the
enjoyment and revenues of their sees, and are constantly running
after Cecil and altering their charges.
This Scotsman (fn. 7) is still in hiding. They say publicly that he is
here and that he has lately been in the Queen's house. This cannot
be ascertained, but it is generally believed, and that he will marry
the Queen. I am told that the matter has been discussed in the
Council, and that they all agree that she should marry the Scotsman
rather than the Archduke in the hope of the former becoming king
of Scotland. Some of them are in favour of waiting until he is
really King, and his country is tranquil, whilst others say that as
the malady of the Queen of Scotland is mortal, there is no necessity
to wait, but that the marriage should take place at once, and he be
helped to take possession of the kingdom. It seems the latter
opinion is held by the Queen, who they say has secretly sent money
to Scotland, and has her ships kept ready to prevent the French
from sending troops to that country, although she says herself that
she is sure the king of France cannot send an army to Scotland at
present, and so say certain Scotsmen recently arrived from France.
I believe that if she could raise a revolt about religion in France like
that in Scotland, neither fear nor conscience would prevent her
from attempting it, and the same thing may be said of Flanders, for
I am quite astounded to see the flocks of heretics who come hither
to the city and are well received and their constant sermons and
The Queen Regent of Scotland is trying to pacify the heretics
there, and the latter say they have arranged in accordance with the
statement sent for your Majesty's information ; but the document
comes from Cecil's house, and I do not believe it. On the contrary,
I hear by other means that the terms are not so hard on the French
as is said here, and that the heretics have given hostages to the
Queen so that she may go to Edinburgh and rule the kingdom,
leaving them in their heresy. Here, however, they publish it in the
other way, as these people lose no opportunity of terrifying the
Catholic party. I hear on very good authority that the Queen is
quite sure that your Majesty will not fail to persist in your
friendship and defence of her kingdom for the sake of your own
interest, and this opinion of hers is shared by all of them, and is the
main foundation of all their deliberations and decisions.
Some Florentines who reside in Lyons, France, have recently
arrived here, it is said, with a sum of money, but I have not been
able to confirm this, although it may well be true, as I know the
French ambassador is promising pensions to some Catholics and
The Queen is beginning to collect the grants that have been
voted. They say the amount will not reach 400,000 ducats in all.
What they have had hitherto have been the church revenues and
some of their properties which they are selling.
These Irishmen have been speaking to me again and they say, in
substance, that in order that your Majesty may be the better
informed about their proposal, they beg you to send a person
expressly to treat with those from whom they come, and they
undertake that one of their number shall accompany him disguised
as a merchant. They say he can go direct from Ireland to Spain
afterwards, and give an account of affairs to your Majesty, and you
can then resolve. They assure me that perfect union and harmony
will exist about it in Ireland, and they believe that the earl of
Ormond himself will fall in with it as he is very indignant and
dissatisfied with this Queen. I am convinced that these men are
not trying to deceive me, but nevertheless I have always answered
them evasively until I know your Majesty's pleasure.
A servant of the Marquis de Nesle, who is one of the French
hostages here, killed an Englishman the other day, and he and the
other Frenchmen have been in great straits as the townspeople took
up arms against them and are pressing them closely.
The king of Sweden's ambassadors who have arrived are being
treated by the Queen in a manner that does away with any doubt
about her marrying their master, for they are being made fun of in
masques in their own presence.—London, 13th July (August?)