Letter ID: 0370
Reference: TNA, SP 84/44/9 f.12r -15v
Citation: DCB/001/HTML/0370/008
Date: 10 January 1592
Copies: 1099 



Addressed: To the right honorable my very singular good Lord the L. Burghley Lord highe Treasurer of England.


Endorsed: 10 January 1591. Master Bodeleie to my L./.


May it please your good L. With her Highnes letter unto me of the 19 of December and one from the LL. of the Councel of the same date, I have re- ceaved your L. of the 21 which came all unto my handes the 7 of this present.

If I knewe any way more dutifull then other, to give her Majestie assurance of my gratitude of minde, and of my speciall inclination to deserve so good a token of her Princely favor, I would willingly declare it both by wordes and effectes. But because this grace doth come unto me, by your L. good report, and yow knowe with what endevors I may give her Majestie best content, I am to pray yow most humbly, to undertake in my behalf (and I hope to perfourme it to your full satisfaction) that I will never lette slippe, in whatsoever I am able, any part of any service, that may be gratefull to her Highnes.

It was a grievous corrosive unto me, that was written from your L. about the weakenesse of the companies, that were sent from this place for the siege of Rouen. Whiche also moveth me the more, for that I feare at other times, and in other like causes, some suche offenses may be taken, as (submitting it further to your L. consideration) I am not any way to answear. For I had never yet any charge, sins my first comming hither, nether from the LL. of the Councel, nor yet from your L. by letter or otherwise, to deale in any mater appertening to the Musters. I had never no copie sent unto me, as there was to other officers, of any orders or instructions, that were at any time sent /hither,/ as there were at sundrie times, for divers speciall reformations. fol.13v
For whiche I could not but presume, that it was not any way intended, that I should meddle with those affaires. And wheras by the last newe Establishement, for the distribution of her Majesties paies (wherof in like sort I have had no copie sent unto me) it is ordened that 3 bookes should be kept by the Commissaries, to be sent at the ende of every 6 monethes, to Master Wilkes, to the Treasurer and to me, and that to me to be presented to the Councel of state, it was never yet perfourmed by any towardes me. Yet though I had no or- der, nor letter about it, I would not have omit- ted to calle upon them for it, but that the Councel of state hath alwaies made me answear, that they can not accept of any Musters, but suche as are passed aswell by their owne, as by her Majesties Commissaries, and in one kinde of order without the allowance of the dead paies, and of sun- drie other pointes, which are otherwise sette downe in her Majesties orders, then they will be persua ded to practise or approve. Master Wilkes can report unto your L. their precise proceeding in that respect, which is also specified by the Apo- stilles of the states to his last Propositions.

It may happely be, that your L. doth conceave, that being heere in place, I might have knowen by relation, or by some other ready meanes, the strength of every company. But I doe assure your L. it is not possible for me, not having the oppor- tunitie to see an Englishe company, but when they come to service, and when the Councel is pre sent, which is never but in sommer, and then very seeldome: and yet of those that are imploied in the feelde, there is hardly the third of her Majesties forces. My best intelligence for the state of the companies fol.14r
might come from the Commissaries of the Musters, but their usual residence is so farre from the Hage, that the Brille sette a part, I can hardly send to the neerest unto me, and be sure of his answear, under eight or nine daies.

Moreover because I greatly douted, lest the forsaid companies would be founde very weake, for that I knewe they had bin spent, partly by service this sommer, partly by sicknes, and no supplies sent over, besides the nombers, that would flie from their Captaines, before they came to em- barking, if yow please to calle it to minde, I did signifie in my letter of the 20 of November that for the renforcement of the troupes, some supplie would be needefull to be sent unto Diepe.

There are at this present, as I writte to your L. in my last, twenty Enseignes of these contreis, that attend but a winde to be shipped for France, of which there are 5 at the least of 200 in a bande, and the rest of 150 and 130 so as being complete they might reche to the nomber of 3000 at the lest, and yet by reason of the forsaid accidents this last sommer, it is generally supposed, that they will scantly amount to 2000 in all, which will scarcely prove so good a recke- ning as of the Englishe troupes: considering that the Dutche companies have no allowance of dead paies. I take litle pleasure to putt your L. to this trouble, to hearcken to the reasons of my privat defense: but I beseeche yow to impute it to mine earnest desire, not to seeme any other then I will be alwaies, and I trust I have bin hitherto, which is as carefull to acquite, what my duty shall require, as can be expected at my handes. Your L. I am sure shall never fol.14v
have good cause to be otherwise persuaded: as nowe I hope, in this point of the companies de- fectes, yow are better informed of my dealing, and will vouchesafe in that respect, to remove every sparkle of her Majesties displeasure. But if I shall at any time receave any maner of charge in regard of the Musters, whereby it may not be conceaved, that I meddle by intrusion in the offices of others ether heere or at home, there shall nothing be wanting to the diligent perfourmance of that her Highnes shall commaund. For hitherto in truth I have alwaies understoode, that Master Wilkes had a special Commission, to examine the proceedinges of the Englishe Commissaries, and to looke into all maters beloning to the Musters: for which cause, and for that I was never required, as likewise that the Governors of garrisons and others (who ought to have the care to keepe their companies complete, and may easely doe it, having them alwaies in their sight) might not thinke me over busie in the affaires of their charge, I alwaies thought I might be excused, if I should not deale any further, then I was specially autorised.

Astouching those Musters, whiche my LL. of the Councel are desirous, should be passed by the officers of the states, I have writ- ten an answear in a letter a part, whiche your L. will be pleased to deliver unto them.

For an answear to the letter which was written from Monsieur de Bilandt one of the Emperors Ambassadors at Brussels, wherof I made mention in my last to your L. it is nowe resolved, that he shall have licence to come hither. The deputies of the General states fol.15r
of whose recesse I have written in my former letters, are not yet returned: but the Councel of state, to whome the forsaid Ambassador ad- dressed his letter aswel as to the states, have sent a Passeport unto him. They have ende- voured hitherto, by suche devises and excuses, as I have alwaies imparted by my letters to your L. to stoppe the comming hither of any of those Ambassadors. Nowe notwithstanding that accesse is required but for one of their nomber, which is also reputed an honest favourer of their cause, it is thought by this Councel, that the ad- mission of him, will serve them for a colour, to shake of the rest, and yet to satisfie the Emperor and the Princes of Germany, as- touching their desire to come to a Pacification. For seing there is no meeting of the General states, to whome it properly belongeth, to give audience and answear, in affaires of that nature, it is considered that this Councel may very well refuse it, as having no autoritie to answear an Ambassador, and yet by worde of mouth, and by way of communication (for happely by writing they might be more bounde and entangled then they would be) they may bothe make an excuse in the behalf of the states, for that the Ambassadors were not hitherto ad- mitted, by reason of their recesse, and notifie withall what maner of peace they doe minde to embrace: wherein they thinke that bothe the con- treis turne may be served both for answearing the Emperor, and for cleanly casting of the Ambassadors Proposition, and likewise for drawing somwhat in conference of the Enemies drfit in the moving of this Treaty: and all fol.15v

Later Addition: 10 January 91/2

without prejudice to themselves, or to the contrey. For besides that they are purposed to answear to all thinges with a speciall reserve, it is considered that the Actions of the Councel in causes surpas- sing the autoritie of their college, are not any way obligatorie to the states in generall.

It is conditioned in the forsaid Passeport, that Monsieur de Bilandt, must come forward without delay, and not to bring with him above 12 persons. There is also order taken, that comming to Lillo, he shall be receaved by an officer of the Admiraltie, and by him conducted by water to the Hage. And thus for this present I take my humble leave. From the Hage January 10 1591. Your L. most humbly bounden Tho. Bodley