Letter ID: 1145
Reference: BL, MS Cotton Galba D IX f.210r-214v
Citation: DCB/001/HTML/1145/008
Date: 01 June 1592
Copies: 1367 0393 



Later Addition: [[Bel]]gia [[15]]92 Jun 10

May it please your good L. The 24 day of /May/ within a daies jorney of Steenwicke I receaved her Majesties lettres to the general States and to my selfe, with one from your L. which were dated the 8 and the 9 of the same. Advertised thereby of the pleasure of her Highnes that I should deale with the Councel and Count Maurice, as well as with the States, for sending further succors to the service of the Kinge, I parted presently upon it, and came the same day where the Count was encamped. Having signified there unto him her Majesties desire, and used requisit persuasion, to move him to advance it, he made me this answear, that he was very well assured of the States reso- lution, not to send for this present any more into France: for that the Contrey had assented to a large contribution for the atcheiving heere of those attemptes, which are determine[d] this sommer: which also tende to the assuring of the Province of Frise, and that their honor was engaged in the enter prise of Steenwicke. Whereupon for himselfe, as it was not a matter, that belonged unto him, but to the states of the Countrey, so he thought it very hard to be pressed thereunto, not willing /to/ intermeddle ether one way or other And as touching the troupes, which her Majestie required of her owne intertenment, he was fully persuaded, that assoone as they were gone, the States would revoke their forces out of France: and that besides it would occasion a great discontentment among the people of theese Provinces, and cause that nothing would be done ether heere or in France: which would prejudice exceedingly both her Majestie and them. This was the substance of his answear unto me. Whereunto I replied, that howsoever the States had already resolved to imploye their forces heere at home, both her fol.210v
Majestie and they had but onely one designe, which was to ruine the Enemie by all the meanes they coulde devise. And seing in all apparance, he was already reduced to suche termes of extremitie, as an opportunitie nowe served, to precipitat all his power, and that very shortly by assisting the Kinge with suche strength as they were able, they could not answear in reason to their friendes and allies, for their wilfull neglect of a notable advantage. And to that which he objected that they had levied a subsidie in regard of their owne estate, and were nowe in suche an action, as they could not well give over, with the credit of the contrey, or the peoples satisfaction, it importing the deliverance of a principall Province, from subjection of the Enemie, her Majestie in her lettre had made sufficient answear, That if the Enemie in France prevaile of his dessigne, his losses heere at home of a fewe litle townes will be soone recovered. And for contenting of the people, which can not happely conceave, howe the expending of their mony, to support a forraine Prince, can redounde unto the contr[ey] much more beneficiall, then it may doe heere among them[selves] in these intended exploites, which are done before their en[.] and are understoode of them all, and carie a kinde of ce[r] taintie of that successe that they desire, That I signifi[ed] was a point, in which his owne good endevor, with the rest of [the] Gouvernors, and those that have the maneging of the affa[ires] of their state, was specially required. For if they w[ill] resolve to concurre in some good forme of a publicke Re[mon] strance, and travel in suche sorte, as they were able, [with] the people, it would undoubtedly prove easie, to compa[sse] their good liking. But howsoever they were inclined fol.211r
for withholding of their owne forces, her Majestie did expect, that they would not refuse her, for the enseignes demanded of the Englishe assistance. For they might drawe out of Holland for a present supplie, as good as 15 companies of their owne pay, which were reserved heere behinde, for defense against the Enemie, while the armie is at Steenwicke. They have also lately intertened, as I writte unto your L. the 17 of the last, 2000 men of Juliers, to be imploied in their service upon certaine weekes warning: so as nothing can impeache but that to intention of her Majestie for the use of those that she requireth, should be willingly accorded. There was nothing saide to this that was greatly material, nor to divers other pointes, that I proposed to like effect. But he concluded all his answear, that for his owne particular he would nether make nor marre the mater, but leave it to the States. To the selfe same purpose, as I had dealt with the Count, I dealt the next day after with the Councel of estate: who thought the motion out of season, their campe being settled in the siedge of Steenwicke: the taking whereof would free the land of Frise of a great contri bution, amounting yerly at the lest to 24000l sterling, which is payed to the Enemie by the frontier inhabitants: for which they thought it impossible to gette the states to yeld unto it. They urged therewithall that the affaires of the King, did alter very muche, and were now in an other state, then at the time of the date of her Majesties lettre. For they had letters from sondrie places, that Parma was returned, and in all probabilitie, would give some onsette at his comming. And where her Highnes did require 2000 of her owne subjects, to be shipped out of hand, they stoode upon fol.211v
the Contract, that they could not in equitie be otherwise disposed then the contrey shall appoint: for that her M[ajestie] hath cautions for the answearing of her charges. In con clusion they tooke it for a matter appertening to the states and so remitted me to them. As I had formerly replied to the Countes allegations, I delivered the same to the Counc[el] againe, to witte in suche pointes as their speeches agreed: and declared besides to their further objections, that they knewe well enough they were able for a time, to spare a good power to the assisting of the King and yet retaine sufficient strength, for defense of all their places. And as for that which they had pleaded upon the mater of rembour- sement, it was not greatly pertinent. For in a manifest case, of suche advantage to the cause, they should deale very strictly with her Majestie, if having suffered those of Holland to send certaine Regiments into France, without asking the advise of the rest of the Provinces, they would ticke at her demand, which is so orderly imparted and desired at their handes. Againe, albeit they were unwilling to take any order in this mater, but put me over to the states, they were not ignorant notwithstanding, that th[e] states intermedling in a cause of this qualitie, was a flatte usurpation, and that all the actions of these wa[rres] by graunt of the Contract were belonging onely to h[er] Majestie and to the Colledge of the Councell, wherby her Hig[nes] had authoritie, as much as all the councel, to appoint [the] imploiment of their forces for the service of the Con[trey] I wished them at last, that although they would not [send] any more of their owne, they should not stand with her [Majestie] for the 14 Englishe bandes, which if they would not per[mitte] fol.212r
to be presently sent, being most of them there and engaged in the siedge, yet because it was hoped, that in 10 dayes after the service would be ended, and because they had besides them suf- ficient forces of the contrey, to performe the rest that they intended for the attemptes of this sommer, they should not make any further question, when Stenwicke was reduced. To which effect I did desire, that they would fall in consul- tation, and give the States their best advise. But to that they would not answear. I had this conference with the Councel the 25 of May, in the Campe before Steenwicke. But because they left me to the States, to whome her Majesties lettre was addressed expressely, and were residing at the Hage, I came hither thereupon with all possible speede: where I found their assembly dissolved for a time, and divers of the Deputies departed home into their Provinces, so as those that were remaining, made some doubt of breaking open her Majesties lettre, for want of their being in competent number. But when I had declared to some in particular, that this recesse of the States, at suche a time as the Contrey had greatest neede of their service, would seeme a practise for the nones, to defeate her Highnes of her purpose, and that I thought shee would goe forward without attending their meeting, they assembled then as many as were abiding heere in place, and used divers communications and commings toe and froe, to debate the mater with me: which was all to one effect, with the speeches of the Count, and Councell of estate. But this they added more, that for their Levies in Juliers, they were for that provision, which they made for Britaine , and not to be imploied in any other part: for which also their shippes, which they promised for their portion are all in a readines fol.212v
so as nowe they doe attend what her Highnes will resolve. Moreover for the companies in Holland, which I alleaged the[y] might use in lieu of the Englishe, they had freshe intellige[nce] out of Brabant, that Mondragon was in feeld with 1500 footemen, and towardes 400 horse, and had taken Sgravenwes[el] which was a place of good strength, appertening to these contrei[s] From thence, ass it seemeth, he marcheth towardes Tournhoult and Westelo, which are also castels in our possessio[n] and as his forces shall augment, as by report they doe daily they feare some greater mater. For prevention whereof they might not suffer those troupes to be sent out of Holland. Lastely they told me, that they had newly given leave to their Coronels in France, who they though[t] at this present had scarce in all a 1000 men, to raise their numbers to 2400: which they were in good hope would satisfie the Kinge, considering their estate: as they doubted not also, but her Majestie would be moved, not to presse them any more, upon notice of as much, as they had declared, which they praied me to certifie. For as yet they were uncertaine, whether in a matter of that consequence being fewer then they should be, and therefore not aut[ho] rised to assembled as a colledge, they might answear h[er] Majestie by way of a letter: which yet they meant to put againe [in] further deliberation. I am borne in hand by Master Buz[enval] that he hath dealt very earnestly, to helpe this matt[er] forward, being so commanded by the Kinge: but hath no other answear, then that which I have signified. To [give] your L. some notice of my privat persuasion, If her M[ajestie] at first, as she requested them to yeeld some great[er] aide unto the King, had required thereithwall in absolu[te] fol.213r
manner, that the 14 Englishe bandes should be presently embarked, I thinke they had not made any great opposition, and I am sure it had impeached the composing of their Campe, whereby there had bin hope, that in the end they would have spared some enseignes of their owne. Moreover I hold it my duty to certifie your L. that where her Majestie doeth account that the 24 foote companies should make 2000 men they will not reache to that number in common conjecture by seven or eight hundred at the lest. For there ar almost 300 comprehended in the allowance of the deade paies, and of suche persons in every company as never come to service. It is also supposed that their other defectes, for want of renforcement out of England, and by divers other accidents, and their losses in this siedge, together with the numbers that will runne from their captaines, before they come to be embarked, will stretche in all likelihood, to twice as many more. For there were slaine and hurt, before I parted from the campe, not so fewe as a 100 Englishe: of which there were 60 in one day sent to Campen, Horne, Enchusen, and Amsterdame. And no doubt they have decreased conti- nually since, and will doe more and more, as they come to harder service in assalting or otherwise. Upon this weaknes of the Companies both the states and the Councell did earnestly insist that being drawen away from hence they should be forced out of hand to dissolve their armie, the King should receave but a small relief of men, and at last by that meanes nothing would be done of the one side or the other. Because I doe presume, that Sir Francis Vere, /and/ Sir Robert Sidney will advertise your L. of all that hath passed, since their first sitting downe; I should but overtrouble you with fol.213v
my particular relation. There is very good hope, that we shall carie away the place: and wee looke to understand it within foure or five dayes. At my being there the towne was blocked one every side, aproches made unto the counter scarffe and the most of their gabions placed already. And by ths time I suppose, they have planted their artillery: of which there were 47 great peeces, and 11 for the feelde: wherewith they purpose to batter in 4 several places, for the making of two breaches. They have also made a cavallier, upon which they appoint to place some peeces of ordinance, for skouring the ramparts. Besides they have sette certaine pioners a worke to sappe the walles, and divers ingenors, to devise artificiall fiers, and are determined to put all in execut[ion] in one day, for the more astonishment of the Enemy. The towne is very little, and what garrison is in it, we can not conjecture. For they have carried themselves very souldiourlike, and having made many sallies, never left us a prisoner by whome we might learne the state of th[e] towne. Sir Francis Vere hath bin shotte with a harquebuze in t[he] small of his left legge, and his brother Horace Vere in o[ne] of his armes: but I hope they will both recover it quick[ly.] The hinderance of that which was intended at Enchusen [.] proceeded of the Enemy, who not fully contented with persone alone of the principal party, that was contr[iver] of the practise, required him to bring some other ple[edges] besides, and more then could be well perfourmed, bu[t with] losse of longer time then could conveniently be spare[d] before the siedge of Steenewicke. But the party [doth] yet continue in the handes of the Enemy, and his polle[cie] undiscovered. In the marchantsbusines, which her Majestie fol.214r
recommendeth, I have travelled as much as is possible for me: and I thinke they doe rest indifferently well pleased. The decision of certain points was differred by the states with the companies good liking, to the end of certaine monethes, which when they be resumed I will helpe to end to their content. And so beseeching your L. to acquaint her Majestie with my dealinges, I take my humble leave. Hage. June 1 1592.