Letter ID: 1193
Reference: BL, MS Cotton Galba D IX f.337r-340v
Citation: DCB/001/HTML/1193/008
Date: 10 October 1592
Copy of: 0422



Later Addition: Belgia 1592 October 10

May it please your good L. I was lately requested, to come to the assemblie of the General states, where one of them declared, in the name of the rest, That they had given Master Caron his dispatche unto her Majestie and had proposed by their letters two special pointes to be considered. One concerned the withdrawing of the companies from hens: that the Contract thereby was apparantly infringed: because they have not that assistance, that was promised unto them. They re- quested in the other, that some order might be taken, whereby their trafficke might be freed from the Englishe adventurers, by whome the marchants of these contreis were notoriously wronged: and that restitution might be made of all the gooddes that [In margin: Spoiles of the Zelanders by Englishmen]
they detened: namely belonging to the shippe of Ter vere, and to two other shippes, that have bin taken very lately: of which one is of Middelbourgh, and the other of Amsterdam. In which three, as they say, they have lost above the valewe of threescore thou sand poundes sterlng: the parties being in En- gland by whome they have bin spoiled: char- ging those shippes, which were at the taking of the late Indian price: whome they accuse in like meaner of unmercifull tormenting and killing of their mariners: concluding in the end, and protesting the same very solemnly unto me, that unles some order might be taken, and that very spe- dily, for redresse of those enormities, they were sure it would occasion some great inconvenience. fol.337v
For all their marchants in a maner, not onely in the townes that I mentioned before, but in sundrie other places, did exclame very bitterly, and signifie plainely to them, that their abilitie would not suffer, nor they could not have the patience, to endure those in- juries any longer. Wherupon they thought it re- quisit, not onely to acquaint me, with the effect of their letters, but to intreat me to testifie the discontentment of the contrey, and to concurre in procuring some re- medy for it. I promised in my answer, both to signifie as muche, as they had required, and to doe my best endevor, to advance their desires. But yet first for the point of breaking the Treaty, I desi- red to understand, to what effect they would have me to write unto her Majestie. If it were to solicit the stay of the companies, it was to be supposed, that they were ether gone already, or would be gone very shortly: and in all probabilitie, before it could be pos sible to heare out of England. If their purpose were rather, to have some certaine time appointed, for returne of the companies, upon intelligence there, I would second it as muche, as they could looke f[or] at my handes. But if they had no other mea[ning] but to have me signifie in general, that they int[erpret] this imploiment of the companies in France, to [be a] breache of the Treaty, it had bin done very of[ten] and it was the argument of their answear of [the] 14 of September which I had sent unto her Majestie. Moreover it would revive an ancient content[ion] fol.338r
about the keeping of the Contract, that me thoug[ht] they should desire, to have it put /in/ oblivion. For if it came in any question between her Highnes and them, it would be many waies declared, and prov[ed] effectually, that they had swarved so directly from the meaning of the Treatie in a multitude of cause[s] as it could not be answeared with any colourable reason. Astouching those abuses that were offered to their marchants, I lette them understand that I had newly receaved a copie of the Articles which Master Caron their Agent had exhibited in England and had bin lately apostilled by the judge of the Admiraltie, which having delivered to him in this pla[ce] I did not doubt but by him were imparted unto them. And for ought that I could see, their mar- chants might be satisfied, with those courses of justice that had bin used in their affaires. Nevertheles if they desired some other forme of proceeding, in the hearing of their causes, then had bin practised hi- therto, and was usual in England, upon know ledge in particular, to what order of dealing they would willingly be subject, I would not faile, as I might to recommend it to her Majestie. Having made my answear in this sort, I might easely perceave, that they had stoode at a kinde of stay, wherof I knewe not then the cause. For they repli- ed but briefly to me, That they had written to her Majestie and wold leave it so as they had written, to her Majesties consideration. I had con- ference after with Master Caron, to whome I signified fol.338v
what I had saied in that meeting of the states, and howe nakedly they spake to that which I demaunded: that I knewe not what to thinke, of their humors in the maters, that were moved unto me. Wherto he answeared againe, but under benedicite, That in his speeches unto them, when they gave him his dispatche, he did cast in a maner the self same doutes, and desired to be informed of their full resolution, aswell for requiring the companies againe, as for some order of proceeding in the affaires of the mar- chants. Withall he shewed them the forme of a certaine Commission, which was graunted by her Majestie the 25 of her raigne, to certaine of my LL. of the privy Coun- cell together with some others, to examine and deter- mine all causes of that qualitie, that should touche any subject of the King of Scotland. And if they would be contended to accept of the like, he persuaded them to thinke, that it would not be denied. To this they told him againe, that first for the mater of the En- glishe companies, he should be no meanes be instant, to have them sent againe hither: but onely in gene ral termes make remonstrance of their grief, in that the Treatie was neglected. And for the causes of the marchants, they did not seeme to dislike of t[hat] proceeding by way of commission: but yet they would not of themselves become suitors to have [it.] Because they thought by that meanes thei might be [over] muche bounde, and admitte an ill president, [in] referring the decision of their causes into Englan[d.] fol.339r
Of this I thought very fitte to advertise your L. yet because it will turne Master Caron to displeasure, if the states should understand it, and he would not greatly like that I should write it to your L. I would willingly commit it as a secret to your self. I had very litle hope, that the states would have used his service any longer. For it is not for love that is boaren unto him by the principall heere, nor for any good liking that they have of his dealing: because they judge him to be partiall, and too muche ad- dicted to her Majesties designes. But they can hardly finde an other, that is both sufficient for the place, and a man of that cariage, as is meete for them to send to negotiat with her Majestie. What in- tention thei may have, in forbidding him expressely to make any suite unto her Majestie to returne her assistance, I can not yet conjecture. For the people of this contrey are diversly affected. Some would persuade to have her Majestie moved, to assist them for heereafter in some other kinde of sort: as by an annual summe of mony: whereby their turn might be served, if the summe were competent, to bette[r] purpose then before. Others doe desire the conti- nuance of the succors, but yet because they doe see the French Kinges necessitie, which they knowe must be re- lieved by her Majestie or by them, they are not muche unwilling to their imploiment in Brittaine: sup posing that her Majestie being once embarked in that warre, will maintene it so roundly, as this con- trey will be eased in their imprests to the King. fol.339v
Some others thinke that the contrey is so assured in every Province, as there is no necesitie of her Highnes support. And to the end they might enjoye their gouvernment alone, and be quite of that auto- ritie which is due unto her by the Contract, they would gladly be ridde of all the Englishe nation. Whether of these conceats is in the Deputies heere of the General states, I can not say with any certaintie. But once I am assured, that howsoever their estate, and the qualitie of their persons doth minister cause to make men thinke, that their dealinges are as plaine and inwardly the same, as they are caried in out- ward shewe, yet to say as I finde by their daily proceeding, they are many of them wilie, and voide of sinceritie, ill affected in their hartes, and un- thankfull towardes her Majestie. And whether it be not needefull in that respect, and for their present doubtfull dealing, that some extraordinarie care should be taken of the Cautionarie townes, I knowe your L. will consider. So muche the more, for that the contrey at this present is greatly disquieted, with these tidinges of the torture and slaughter of their sea men, and continuance of their losses, which are amplified alwaies by the marchants report, an[d] the people made beleve, that ether in England they [can] not be heard, or that thei can not have justice. [which] I knowe doth proceede of very passion and mali[ce] through the losse of their gooddes, but yet undou[tedly] heere it is both a common speeche, and a cons[tant] persuasion, aswell of the chiefe, as of the vulga[r] sort of people: that unles they may receave fol.340r
some speedy satisfaction, it can not choose but en- gender some dangerous disorder. and howe soone it may be wrought, by the meanes of badde instru- ments, of which these contreis have enough, I neede not signifie to your L. It is written from Brussels, that the King of Spaine doth determine, to send thither his sonne, to the end the people of those Provinces may publikly accept him as lawfull heir unto his father, and take an othe of obedience. They signifie withall, that there is a model sent thither for enlarging the palace: which is also begonne, and in hand already. This is thought to be a pra- ctise, not onely to contene his owne in devotion, but by some offers to compasse the disuniting of thes[e] contreis. Where it hath bin heere con- cluded, that there army yet in field, should passe the Rhine about Embricke, to stoppe the pasage of the Enemie: it was presently after understoode, that 600 horse of the Enemies strength were over already and that the Duke in like maner was gone from the spa: Wherupon Count Maurice with his campe, attendeth about Embricke, to see what verdugo wil[l] further attempt, with the remainder of his forces: who we heare at this present, doth not sturre out of Oldenzeel in the Twente, having lost in a mutini[e] for want of pay, 7 enseignes of footemen, which are wholy debanded, and 5 cornets of horse, that are passed the Rhine. It is said thereupon that Count Maurice is gone to doe some exploit: but whether it be to fight with verdugo, while his souldiers do mutinie, fol.340v
or to attempt somwhat els, it is not certified unto us. But unles it be to surprise some palce of the Enemie, or to doe some soddaine service by way of incursion, the yere is so muche spent, and heere hath fallen so muche raine, for two monethes together, that it is not possible for the souldiers, to keepe the field any longer, in a contrey full of marishes. And thus for this present I take my humble leave. From the Hage. October 10 1592. Your L. most humbly bounden Tho. Bodley