Letter ID: 0376
Reference: TNA, SP 84/44/96 f.100r-102bv
Citation: DCB/001/HTML/0376/008
Date: 04 February 1592
Copies: 1098 



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

Endorsed: 4 February 1591. Master Bodeleie to my L. The cawse of disimbarquinge of the 20 Compagnies that showld have gon into France. His opinion for 5000 or 6000 soldiers to be imployed thence this sommer for France./


May it please your good L. because I would not that the talke, which I have had with Monsieur Bilandt, should be long unknowen to your L. if my former letter, of the 2 of this present should happen to miscarie, I thought best to prevent it, by sending an other copie.

The 20 Enseignes of footmen, which were ap- pointed from hens to the siege of Rouen, are growen so feeble and full of infirmitie, by meanes of their long continuance in the shippes, whereto they have bin forced for want of a winde, that nowe they are admitted to re- freshe themselves with in the townes: but in places neere adjoining, to the end they may be rea- dy, when the winde draweth Esterly.

The time of their returne is limited to the 15 day of Marche, after their account: but if neede require, I thinke they shall be spared for one moneth longer. The states of Holland have resolved to levie, for their owne extraordinarie quote, for the next som- mers service, 6 enseignes of footmen, and 3 cornets of horsmen: but what is meant to be done by the rest of the Provinces, we are not yet advertised. They doe make full account to bring into the field, at the lest 10000 foote, and 2500 horse, with 40 peeces of batterie, which no doubt will suffice to annoy the Enemie many waies, bothe by getting of places of speciall importance, and by deriving some strength from his army in France. But howsoever it be fol.101v
to crave your L. pardon, if I speake without judgement in these martiall affaires, there might an other course be taken, to the Enemies greater detriment, if ether of themselves, or by her Majesties persuasion, they can be wonne to yelde unto it. For seing in mans discourse, they can enjoye but a while the benefit of their former or future victories, if God shall not prosper the actions of France: and for as muche as the Kinge is without any power to serve a foote, being like by that meanes to be greatly distressed, I can not possiblely understand howe the want of the King can be better sup- plied, and the good of these Provinces more effectually procured, then if they wold de- termine, to make a defensive warre for the next sommers season, and to send some five or six thousand of their souldiers into France. Of which there might conveniently be raised to- wardes 2000 Englishe, including the 7 com- panies, which are already there in service, and the rest be taken of their owne intertenment. For undoubtedly these Provinces are so ap- parantly well assured, as considering the extraordinary bandes which they purpose to erect, unles that Parma should returne, with all his strength out of France, they may easely forbeare the forsaid nomber, and hold their owne heere at home, with the rest of their forces.

Besides a publike benefit wherof they above others shall be greatest partakers they fol.102r
shall also be eased of those excessive charges of a campe, that consist in provision of victuals, powder, shotte, cariages, and shipping, with the intertenment of many officers, and other perti- nent expenses, that amount in the field to very great summes. If her Majestie be willing that the Kinge be thus assisted, there is a great opportunitie to persuade the states unto it, when their forces nowe embarked, shall be safely there arrived. For if as then it will please her Highnes and the Kinge to be earnest in requesting, that those that are gone for France already, may be there continued, and that as many more may be added, as may serve to the accomplishing of the forsaid number: with a further declaration, that for as many as may be spared of the Englishe com- panies, her Majestie is resolved, that they shall be there imploied, as long as this necessitie of the King doth require it, I should hardly conceave, that they would use therupon any great contradiction. Of all that I doe doubt, will be opposit unto it, Count Maurice is the chiefest: for that I knowe he is desirous, to doe somwhat heere himself, for the increase of his credit. And then the states of Friseland will dislike it utterly, for that they thinke assuredly, to recover this sommer the towne of steenwicke. Howbeit for that it will profit them but litle, to gette ether that or any other towne, if the Kinge be overthrowen fol.102v
I doe hope assuredly, that her Majesties urgent lettres and a good remonstrance of the King, may /will/ cause them to relent. For though it may be presupposed, that in the absence of the D. of Parma they shall have meanes to perfourme some sin- gular service, yet I see no reason to make any president of the last yeres actions, and to hope in this to come, to obtene the like successe.

For what impressions so ever have bin made in mens conceats, astouching those exploites, it was no other but Gods good pleasure, that the Enemie should be abused, and should want at that time the common use of his senses, for pre- venting their attemptes. For otherwise heere they did nothing for certaine, for whiche they might have hoped, to have had those events. And that was evident to as many, as were alwaies heere in place, and had meanes to observe the formes of their proceedinges. And if this be so considered, as I assure my self it is, among the most that are heere, I thinke they should not be unwilling, to this forrene imploiment, for one sommers service.

Your L. will vouchesafe to exa- mine my motion, and if yow finde it so muche worth, to impart it to her Majestie whose pleasure being signified, I will conforme my best endevors, to bring it to effect. But untill I shall have notice, of howe her Highnes doth embrace it, I purpose wholy to be silent: both because I am sure, it is no fol.102br
mater to purchase the favor of these contreis, and perhaps /likewise/ if it should be nowe in question, before their souldiers were departed, it might occasion, I feare, their stay for all to- gether. Leaving it thus to your L. wisedome I take my humble leave. From the Hage February 4 1591. Your L. most humbly bounden Tho. Bodley

4 February 91/2