Simancas
August 1595

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Institute of Historical Research

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Martin A. S. Hume (editor)

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1899

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617

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'Simancas: August 1595', Calendar of State Papers, Spain (Simancas), Volume 4: 1587-1603 (1899), pp. 617. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=87240 Date accessed: 01 September 2014.


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August 1595

August.
Estado, 839.
633. Document headed, Paper given by the third Scotsman.
On the 5th July, Matthew Semple, gentleman, left Paris for Spain on behalf of the earls of Huntly and Bothwell, and Lord Semple, all of whom had left Scotland in consequence of the confusion in the news coming from Flanders, by which the Catholics were made to believe that his Majesty would do nothing for Scotland, except with the co-operation of the King. The king of Scotland was also kept informed of what was in progress, and he deceitfully contiuued on good terms with the lords. They, however, knew his intention, and paid no attention to his doings, but still hoped that his Majesty (Philip) would not permit so much injustice to be done. But as an answer was so long delayed, contrary to their expectations, they began to suspect that the corrupt management of the Scottish king had upset the plan, as he not only continued this trick in Flanders, but industriously sought to gain the nobles, either by force or chicanery. At last, as no answer came, they made sure that his manœuvres had succeeded, though the king of Scotland wrote to them frequently that he was of the same intention as they were, and was himself secretly planning the means, pending the arrival of aid from Spain. He also said it was necessary that he should maintain a secret correspondence with them. He must, however, he said, still appear severe publicly, and assured them that he only wanted a show of obedience to him by two or three of them leaving Scotland for any other country, except the king of Spain's dominions, for as long or short a period as they liked. This was written secretly, and with many expressions of affection ; but there was a public arrangement that many should ostensibly be banished, although only the three named really went. This was agreed amongst the Catholics, in order to test the truth of the news from Flanders, spread by idle people there, who for years have had no communication with Scotland. They left their lands well guarded by the rest of the Catholics, such as Angus, Errol, and Herys, who hold the authority of these others in their absence. Huntly is at Cologne, and Bothwell and Semple in Paris. Semple first passed through Flanders to test the truth of the reports, but could find no impartial person to inform him, and went on to Paris, where advices were received from Huntly which caused them to dispatch the said Matthew Semple to Spain, with letters of credence, to learn the true state of affairs, and to convey the intention of the three lords to his Majesty. We beg that the resolution arrived at may be prompted by the knowledge that the love and determination of the Catholics will not waver, if his Majesty will treat them in accordance with their deserts, and they urge his Majesty to act with more promptitude, either in deeds or resolution in writing, and if promises are punctually fulfilled he may always count upon the fidelity of the Catholic lords.


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