Letter ID: 0284
Reference: TNA, SP 84/41/151 f.151r-152v
Citation: DCB/001/HTML/0284/008
Date: 09 February 1591
Copies: 0999 


May it please your good L. to be advertised, that where her Majestie vouchesafed, as your L. writte unto me the 27 of the last, to repute me a fitte instrument, to moderat in maters between Sir John Norreis and Sir Francis Vere, I have had no occasion to imploy my self in that respect. For I doe assure your L. Sir John Norreis hath caried himself with great discretion, and conversed very frindly, aswell with Sir Francis, as with Sir Thomas Baskeville, and all the other captains. The like good endevor hath bin also in Sir Francis, who resolved with himself before the arrival of the other, that in respect of her Highnes service, what- soever mater of his owne might have moved his pa- tience, he would treade it cleane under foote, and advise every other to take the like course. To say but a truth unto your L. I doe finde him so con- siderat and carefull, to doe her Majestie honor in all his actions in these contreis, and his suffici- encie is suche, for the accomplishing of that that belongeth to his charge, as her Majestie may expect very singular service at his handes.

For that I doe assure my self, whatsoever hath bin treated between the states and Sir John Norreis, he himself by his letters will certifie at large, I will not troble your L. with that which is past. The 5 of this moneth he departed from hens towardes Zeland, and the next day after sent Captain Crips with letters to the captaines in the Province of Guelders, enjoining to bring away their troupes, or if the contrey should refuse, to provide them of meanes, to marche quietly away, that then every captaine should casse his owne company, and appoint a Rendevous to the souldiers, ether at Flushing or at the Brille. It can not be gainsaied but that her Majesties intention for the use of her forces els where, doth apparantly tend aswell to the good fol.151v
of these contreis, as to the preservation of her owne, yet undoubtedly heere, unles we doe observe that course of proceeding, which the state of their affaires, and the peoples humors doe require, it may growe very dangerous to execut her purpose. In whiche respect Sir John Norreis and I doe somwhat differ in judgement. For he doth seeme to understand, that her Highnes commaundement, for the having of her subjectes from hens is peremptorie: and that without regard to the states opposition, or to other perils in apparance, it ought to be effected. But I doe gather an other mea- ning by her Majesties instructions, That if nether the states will assent to her Majesties demaunde, nor convenient meanes can be found, to drawe the companies from hens, that then Sir John Norreis should returne without atten- ding further order. First for the states, I did never see them so perplexed, as they are at this present: nor I never knewe the common people, to take any thing more to hart: not so muche in respect, that her Highnes doth require, to have the use of her subjectes, as because they are in doubt, that they shall not be returned, and because they ar thus called very soddainly away, without any warning to the contrey, in a greater nomber then they may spare, and by way of cassing the companies, which they are greatly afraid, will turne their estate to some notorious in- convenience. Many good reasons have bin used, to make them alter their conceats, and to persuade them effectually to a better liking of the mater. But first they signifie flatly, that they can not, if they would, without the privitie of the Provinces, dis- misse any forces. And then againe, sins this letter was begonne to be written to your L. the states have assembled, as they terme it, collegialiter, and com- ming in as we sate in the Councel of state, declared with great earnestnes, that for the good of the contrey, and for the acquital of their owne duties, they had given fol.152r
in charge to their officers in all quarters, where the En- glishe men were placed, that they should not be assisted with any vittailes, shippes, or needefull provision to passe out of their Garrisons: and that they had made a Protest against Sir John Norreis proceedinges, which they would presently send unto him, by a messenger of purpose. And withall they delivered there to me an autentical Insinuation of the said Protest, wherof I will inclose the transcript in this letter. They have also sent the like to Sir Francis Vere, Sir Thomas Morgan, and Sir Edward Norreis. I for my part made that answear there unto them, whiche I thought to be fittest for the appealing of their passions. I signified that I was in good hope, they would better consider of her Majesties request, sins it stretched no further then for 3 or 4 monethes, and would be greatly beneficial to the general cause. And in the meane season, they were to conceave, that her Majestie had no meaning, to have any thing in this action tumultuously attempted, or to endanger their state in any respect. And thus your L. may perceave, howe the states are affected to the Sir John Norreis proposition. Secondly for that which is left to his direction, for drawing away the companies, by cassing, or otherwise, howe impossible it is, without imminent danger to these Pro- vinces, the ruine of the companies, and present losse of those townes, in which the Englishe only are in Garrison, I leave to your L. to conjecture. For helpe they shall have none of the contrey people, and when the souldiers are discharged, and consequently dispersed, and left to their libertie, it is generally supposed, that not half of the nombers, will repaire to Sir John Norreis. Many, no dout, will put themselves in other compa- nies, some will home into England, and others to the Enemie or els where, and a very great part, of those in speciall, that are tied heere by mariage, fol.152v

Endorsed: 9 February 1591. Master Bodeley to my L./

Later Addition: 9 February 90/1

will remaine in these contreis. For as I am infor- med by divers captaines, there are of those that are wived heere, above 40 in /a/ bande.

Having certified your L. howe troblesome this mater is growen to the state, and howe hardly it can be com- passed, without muche inconvenience, I would most willingly understand, what her Highnes will be pleased to commaund me therein, and so I take my humble leave. From the Hage. February 9 1590. Your L. most humbly bounden Tho. Bodley

Postscript: The bearer herof Captain Spring had the charge of a Captain in the Portugal voiage, and hath served as Lieutenant in these contreis, for 5 yeres together. If there should be occasion to use him, in the services towardes in France, I am to witnes to your L. that he hath the report of an honest and an able souldier.