Letter ID: 1099
Reference: BL, MS Cotton Galba D IX f.21r-22v
Citation: DCB/001/HTML/1099/008
Date: 10 January 1592
Note: This document is badly fire damaged.
Copy of: 0370


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 receaved 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 you knowe with what ende- vors I may give her Majestie best content, I am to pray you most humbly, to undertake in my behalf (and I hope to perfourme it to your full satisfaction) that I will never lette slippe, 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 offences may be taken, as (submittinge 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 matter appartening 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. For which 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 Tresurer and to me, and that to me to be presented to the Councel of state, it was never yet perfourmed by any fol.21v
towardes me. Yet though I had no order, nor letter [about it, I] woulde not have omitted to calle uppon them for it, [but that] the Councel of State hath alwaies made me an[swear, that] they cannot accept of any Musters, but suche as [are passed] aswell by their owne, as by her Majesties Commissa[ries, and] in one kinde of order withowt the allowance of the d[ead paies] and of sundrie other pointes, which are otherwise s[et down] in her Majesties orders, then they will be persuaded [to practise] or approve. Master Wilkes can report unto your [L. their] precise proceeding in that respect, which is also spec[ified by] the Apostilles of the states to his last Propos[itions] It may happely be, that your L. doth conceave, that being [here in] place, I might have knowen by relation, or by some o[ther ready] meanes, the strength of every company. But I doe [assure your] L. it is not posible for me, not having the opportun[ity to] see an Englishe company, but when they come to se[rvice, and] when the Councel is present, which is never but in [sommer] and then very seeldome: and yet of those that are im[ployed in] the feelde, there is hardly the third of her Majesties for[ces.] My best intelligence for the state of the companies [might come] from the Commissaries of the Musters, but their usual r[esidence] is so farre from the Hage, at the Brille sette a part I [can] hardly send to the neerest unto me, and be sure of his a[nswear] under eighte or nine daies. Moreover because I [greatly] doubted, lest the foresaide companies woulde be founde v[ery weak,] 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, befo[re they] came to embarking, if you please to calle it to minde [I did] signifie in my letter of the 20 of November that for the ren[forcement] of the troupes, some supplie woulde be needfull [to be sent] unto Diepe. There are at this present, as I [writte] your L. in my last, twenty Enseignes of these con[treys that] attend but a winde to be shipped for France, of w[hich there] are 5 at the lest of 200 in a bande, and the rest of [150 and] 130 so as being complete they might reche to the n[umber of] fol.22r
3000 at the lest, and yet by reason of the foresaide accidents this last sommer, it is generally supposed, that they will scantly amount to 2000 in all, which will scarcely prove so good a reckeninge as of the Englishe troupes: considering that the Dutche companies have no allowance of dead paies. I take litle pleasure, to putte your L. to this trouble, to hearken to the reasons of my privat defence: but I beseeche you 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 have good cause to be otherwise persuaded: as nowe I hope in this pointe of the companies defectes, 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 manner of charge in regard of the Musters wherby 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 matters belonging to they musters: for which cause, and for that I was never required, as likewise that the Gouver- nors 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. As touching those Musters, which my LL of the Councell are desirous, should be passed by the Officers of the states, I have written an answear in a letter a part, which your L. will be plea sed to deliver unto them. For an answear to the letter which was written from Monsieur de Bilandt one of the Emperors Am- bassadors 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 of whose fol.22v
recesse I have written in my former letters, are not yet [returned: but] the Councel of state, to whome the foresaide Ambassador [addressed] his letter aswell as to the states, have sent a Passeport [unto him] They have endevoured hitherto, by suche devises and ex[cuses, as] I have alwaies imparted by my letters to your L. to stop[pe the] comminge hither of the Ambassadors. Nowe not[withstanding] 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, at the admission 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 des[ire to] come to a Pacification. For seeing there is no [meeting] of the General states, to whome it properly belong[eth, to give] audience, and answear, in affaires of that nature, it is [considered] that this Councel may very well refuse it, as having [no authority] to answear an Ambassador, and yet by worde of mou[th and by] way of communication (for happely by writinge they [might be] more bounde and entangled, then they woulde be) th[ey may] both make an excuse in the behalf of the states, for [that the] Ambassadors were not hitherto admitted, by reason of [their] recesse, and notifie withall what manner of peace, they doe [mind] to embrace: wherin they thinke that the contreis turne [may be] served, both for answearinge the Emperor and for cleanly [casting] of the Ambassadors Proposition, and likewise for [drawing] somwhat in conference of the Ennemies drift in the [moving] of this Treaty: and all without prejudice to themselves, o[r 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 surpassing the autoritie of thei[r college] are not any way obligatorie to the states in generall [it is] conditioned in the foresaid Passeport that Monsieur de Bi[landt must] come forward without delay and not to bring with him [above 12] persons. There is also order taken at comming to [Lillo he] shall be receaved by an officer of the Admiraltie and [by him] conducted by water to the Hage. Hage [January] 10