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ANNO DOMINI 1569
A Proclamation touching the goods detained. | A conspiracy against Cecyl. | The money demanded. | The English Staple at Hamburgh. | Doctor Story taken. | The rage of the Duke of Alva against the English. | The Spaniard seeketh to raise rebellions against the Queene. | Pirates strained. | The trade in Russia impeached. | The Englishmens freedome in Russia. | Their traffick in Russia. | And in Persia by the Caspian sea. | A Russian embassie into England. | The Russians displeasure against the English. | He is pacified. | Murray oppresseth the Queenes friends. | Rumours against Murray. | Queene Elizabeth refuseth them. | She pitieth the Queene of Scots. | She solliciteth her restitution. | Secret consultation of the Duke of Norfolks marriage with the Queene of Scots. | The first mention of the marriage. | Murrays proposition to the Duke of Norfolk. | Throkmortons counsell. | Articles of marriage propounded to the Queene of Scots. | She accepteth them. | A plot to deliver the Queene of Scots. | The Queene is told of the marriage. | Leicester revealeth the matter. | The Queene deterreth the Duke. | He retireth from the Court. | Cecyl bolteth out the matter. | The Duke retireth into Norfolke. | Hereupon they quake at Court. | The returneth to the Court. | Murray revealeth the marriage. | The Duke committed. | And others. | The guilty crave pardon. | Bookes against this marriage. | Chapine Vitelli, why he came into England. | The rebellion in the North. | The pretext of the Rebels. | They breake forth into rebellion. | Letters to the Papists. | Their rage against bookes. | Their banners. | Their number. | They retire. | They take Bernard-castell. | They fly. | Some are executed. | Others proscribed. | A new rebellion. | The Rebels defeated. | Queene Elizabeth relieveth the Protestants in France. | Rebellion in Ireland. | Pacified. | An infelicity in Ireland.
HE sixt day of January was set forth at London a Proclamation concerning the Englishmens goods detained by the Duke of Alva, wherein most of the things already spoken were expressed, and the blame layed upon De-Spesi. Who opposed another writing to the contrary, wherein he signified that the said writing was not set forth by the Queene, but in the Queenes name, by some that bare no good will to the Spaniard and favoured the Rebels of the Netherlands. The Queenes former kindnesse toward the Spaniards he commended, bewayled the alienation of her minde without cause, stomacked that there was no more credit given to him being an Ambassadour, and to the Duke of Alva’s letters, and marvelled that the said money was detained, whereas it more behooved the Queene (said he) to supply the Spaniard with money against his Rebels, then to take any from him. And finally he taxed her, as if she had offered the first wrong, and excused the Duke of Alva’s fact and himselfe. And not content herewith, hee spred abroad defamatory libels, wherein he scandalously galled the Queenes reputation, under the name of Amadis Oriana. For which he was reprehended, and Keepers appointed to looke to him for a day or two; and she at large complained of these things and the like to the Spaniard, but all in vaine.
2. From the detaining of this money certaine Lords of England, amongst whom were the Marquesse of Winchester, the Duke of Norfolke, the Earle of Arundell, Northumberland, Westmorland, Pembroke, Leicester, sought causes against Cecyl, as they had done once or twice before about the money sent to the Protestants in France; but indeed the true cause was for that they repined at his power with the Queene, suspected him to favour the house of Suffolke in the succession of the Crown, and feared lest he would stop the course of their designes. They conspired therefore secretly to cast him in the Towre, Throkmorton his emulating adversary suggesting unto them that, if he were but once imprisoned, meanes to undoe him would not be farre to seeke. But the Queene (by whose discovery I know not) came to knowledge hereof in fit time, and Cecyl through the magnanimous fortitude of his Princesse (who comming upon them in the very instant of time restrained them by a backe) easily defeated the plot that was layed against him. And withall she brake the necke of another more secret designe of theirs, openly to proclaime the Queene of Scots undoubted heire of England, if any thing should fall out other then well to Queene Elizabeth, contrary to a booke sent abroad in favour of the Title of Suffolke.
3. To redemand the money detained, there came now from the Duke of Alva D’Assonville, but whereas he had no Letters from the Spaniard, the Queene referred hiim to her Councell; to whom at first he refused <to> goe. Yet shortly after he went, had audience, and after a moneths stay returned without effecting that he came about.
4. And now the English marchants conveyed their marchandises to Hamburgh in Germany, as to a new Mart or Staple, the Duke of Alva prohibitied all commerce with the English, and appointed searchers, that nothing should be brought in or carryed forth of the Netherlands by them; amongst all which searchers, John Story an English fugitive, Doctor of the Lawes, was the most subtill and diligent; who had before consulted with Prestall a Magicall Impostour against the Queenes life, and had suggested counsels to the Duke of Alva for invading his Country. But he being allured by a wile into a ship which was reported to have brought over English marchandises and heriticall books, they presently set sayle and brought him into England, where he was afterwards executed, as we will shew in proper place.
5. The Duke of Alva not content with all this, commanded that none but ships of warre should put to sea out of the Netherlands, and that they should lay hands on the English wheresoever they should finde them. Which also he procured to be done in Spaine, where the English marchants and Mariners were drawne into the Inquisition and condemned to the Gallyes, and their goods confiscate. And the King of Spaine commanded by his Letters sent to the Earle of Mont-Agund Governour of Andoluzia that no oyle, allum, sugar, spices, or other such like commodities should be transported into England, supposing that if the English were debarred of these things, they would soone breake forth into rebellion, and withall he dealt with the Duke of Norfolke and the Earle of Ormond by secret messengers, that the one should give the Queene somewhat to doe in Ireland, and the other in England, which they ingenuously reveiled, such was their fidelity to their Princesse. As soone as this was knowne to the Maritime people of England, incredible it is with how great alacrity they put to sea, and how largely they exercised piracy against the Spaniards, insomuch as Proclamations came forth to restraine them, wherein all men were prohibited to buy any marchandises of Sea-robbers.
6. In those dayes was the trafficke of the English marchants no less impeached in Russia then in the Netherlands, as well through the falsehood of Factours, and their untoward dissention amongst themselves, as also by the envy of the Germans and Russians against them, while the Russians complained of their cunning dealing and the raising of the prices of their marchandises, and the English which were not of the Muscovia Company, and Germans, complained of the Monopoly. To salve these sores, Thomas Randolph was sent the last yeere into Russia; who though he were not very welcome to the Emperour, forasmuch as he seriously sollicited the matter of trade and meddled not at all with the League which I have before mentioned in the yeere 1567. Neverthelesse at his intercession the Emperour in his singular good will to the Queene and the English Nation granted to the English Company in Russia freedome from all payment of custome, and liberty to carry and vent their marchandises wheresoever they would throwout all the Countries of his most spacious Empire, and to transport them into Persia and Media by the Caspian sea (whereas the marchants of other Nations might not goe a mile beyond the City of Moskow), and gave them houses to twist their Ropes and Cables in for shipping, and a little Country five miles in circuit, with woods to make yron, and tooke the English into an Opprisney, that is, into a choice seede of the people.
7. And now the English began more confidently to survey those Countries, carrying their marchandises up the River Dwina in boates made of one whole piece or tree, which they rowed and rowed up the streame with halsers [hawsers] as farre as Wologda, and from thence by land seven dayes journey to Yeraslaw; and then by the Wolga (which is about a mile over, and runneth thorow a clayish soyle, beset with Oakes and Birchen trees) thirty dayes and as many nights journey downe the River to Astracana. And from Astracana (where they built ships) did they by a very great and memorable adventure many times crosse the Caspian sea, which is very full of flats and shelfes, and pierced thorow the vast desarts of Hircania and Bactriana, to Teverin and Casbin, Cities of Persia, in hope at length to discover Cathay. But the warres which shortly after grewe hot betweene the Turkes and Persians, and the robberies of the Barbarians, interrupted this laudable enterprise of the Londoners. The Emperour sent backe Randolph with presents, and with him Andreas Gregoriwitz Saviena, with a goodly shewe after the manner of that Nation, who was gallantly intertained by the Londoners, and honorably received by the Queene.
8. This Andreas drewe forth a certaine League written in the Russian tongue, which he required to be ratified by secret Letters in the selfe-same words in his presence, and to be translated with all the Letters into the Russian tongue, and confirmed by the Queenes hand, seale, and oath; as also that the Queene would send an Ambassadour of her owne into Russia, who in like manner should receive secret Letters of the Emperours in the same words, confirmed with his seale, and the kissing of the Crosse in his presence. The Queene concluded the League with a clause of Reservation, so farre forth as she might lawfully doe by the Leagues formerly contracted with other Princes, to yeeld one another mutuall ayd against their common enemies, so as nothing should be done against law and right. And if he should by any misfortune abe constrained, either by domesticall or forraine enemies, to leave his Country, she promised most religiously in the word of a Christian Princesse, before his Ambassadour and her inwardest Councellours, and confirmed it with her seale, to receive and intertaine him, his wife, and children, with all the honour worthy of so great a Prince, to assigne unto him a convenient place for his peregrination, to permit unto him the free exercise of his Religion, and liberty to depart at his pleasure; for these were things which he had earnestly intreated in those secret Letters. But so farre was all this from satisfying that fierce natur’d man, to whom his owne minde and will was a law, that in a long Letter, having reckoned all his benefits to the English Nation, he disdainefully upbraided them therewith, stomacked that the Queene sent not an Ambassadour with his to receive his oath, and taxed her as if she neglected him, and were too attentive to the marchants businesse (which were matters unbeseeming a Prince), which marchants he contemptuously and disgracefully charged as a sordid kinde of people that gaped after wealth rather than sought their Princes honour, suspecting that they crossed his designes, and sharpely threatening to revoke their priviledges. Which notwithstanding he did not, being pacified by a kind Letter of the Queens sent by Jenkinson, but most diligently observed her as his sister as long as he lived, sollicited her many times for a more solid confirmation of the said League, and loved the English passing well above all other Nations.
9. Now Murray, who by putting the Queene of Scots, the Duke of Norfolke, and other in England, in hope of restoring the said Queene, had procured himselfe a safe returne into Scotland (for she had restrained the Scots that lay in wayt for his life, and commanded them they should not hinder his returne), was no sooner come to Edenborough, but he assembled the Noble-men that were addicted to the Queene, making it his colour to consult about her restitution. Whither when there came first Hamilton Duke of Chastel-herauld (constituted Vice-regent of the Realme by the Queene) and Heris, both of them perswaded by the credulous Queenes Letters; he, fearing some fraudulent dealing, circumvented them, and not staying the comming of the rest, shut them up in prison and forthwith heavily prosecuted the Queenes favoureres with all injuries of warre.
10. Hereupon rumours were spred all over Scotland against Murray, to wit, that he had entred into agreement with Queene Elizabeth that the young King of Scots should be sent into England to be brought up, That the Castels of Edenborough and Sterlin should be manned with English Garrisons, That Dunbritton should be expugned for the behoofe of the English, That Murray should be proclaimed lawful successour of the Kingdome of Scotland, in case the King should dye without issue; and that he should hold the Kingdome as Queene Elizabeths Homager. These things were so commonly bruited abroad, and with a kind of probability did so trouble mens minds all over Britaine, that Queene Elizabeth thought it concerned both her and Murray in reputation to wipe away these aspersions. She set forth therefore a publicke writing, wherein she declared in the word of a Queene, that these things were most untrue, and forged by such as envyed the tranquillity of both Kingdomes; and that there had not to her knowledge been any Contract made in word or writing betweene her or her ministers and Murray, since he came last into England. But the Earle of Lenox the young Kings grand-father requested her that the King, if he could not be safe in Scotland from the practices and attempts of wicked men, might be sent into England. She affirmed moreover that she held it for false, whatsoever was reported of any Contract betweene Murray and the Earle of Hertford, to wit, that they should yeeld one another mutuall ayd and assistance, to seize upon the Crowne of both Kingdomes. In briefe, there had beene no let [obstruction] (said shee) in her, that the matter betwixt the Queene of Scots and her young sonne was not yet agreed, and she would labour an accord betweene them. And labour it she did for certaine, although she found some conflict in her selfe, on the one side out of feare growne from an inveterate emulation, which amongst Princesses never dyeth, and on the other side out of commiseration and compassion, arising from her often calling to minde of humane frailty.
11. This commiseration as the Queene of Scots more moved, so did she diminish her feare, and by many Letters most full of love, wherein she religiously promised both for her courtesie she had found and the most neere kinred betwixt them, that she would attempt nothing against her nor be beholden to any other Prince for her restitution. Insomuch as Queene Elizabeth earnestly importuned Murray and other Scots by Wood, which was Murrays Secretary, for restoring of her to her former Royall dignity; and if not so, yet that she might enjoy the Royall Title joyntly with her sonne; and if this would not be granted, yet at leastwise she might as a private person spend her dayes at home amongst her owne people, freely, securely, and honorably. But she could never move Murray, who now ruled all the roast.
12. At this time a bruit ran amongst men of better note that the Duke of Norfolk should marry the Queene of Scots, which according to mens affections to the parties was diversely desired, while the Papists hoped that thereby their Religion would be advanced, and others that it would make for the good of the Common-wealth. Certainely very many which saw the Queene averse from marriage, and that forraine Princes, enemies to England, cast their eyes and mindes upon the Queene of Scots as the most undoubted heire of England, thought it would make more for the settling of quiet, and the restraining of the Queene of Scots within her limits, if she were joyned in marriage to the Duke of Norfolke, the greatest and Noblest man of all the Nobility of England, a man in great favour with the people and bred up in the Protestants Religion, then if she were marryed to a forraine Prince, which might by her endanger both Kingdomes, and come to the inheritance of both, which they hartily wished might be conjoyned in a Prince of the English blood, in case any thing other then well should befall the Infant King of Scots. And him also they propounded to draw into England, that he being the true heire of England, brought up amongst the English, might be the more deare to the English, all scruple concerning the succession might be taken away, and Queene Elizabeth might be freed from feare of any thing to be attempted against her by the Duke or Queene of Scots, when she had him in her owne power. Morever (to the end that the Duke might not enterprise any thing against him, but should love him the better), they proposed that the Lady Margaret the Dukes young and onely daughter should be espoused unto him de futuro. Amongst these were the Earles of Arundell, Northumberland, Westmerland, Sussex, Pembroke, and South-hampton, with many Barons, yea, and Leicester also himselfe (whether dissemblingly and cunningly for the overthrowing of the Duke, is uncertaine). All which notwithstanding were of opinion that the matter was first to be imported to the Queene, and referred to her will and pleasure. And that she should prescribe Lawes whereby her owne person, Religion, and the Realme might be most fully secured. But take the matter summarily (if you please) from the very beginning, out of the written confession of the Duke himselfe, which I have seene, and out of the Commentaries and memorials of the Bishop of Rosse, who had a very great hand in this businesse.
13. When the Commissioners met the last yeere at Yorke, Lidington and the Bishop of Rosse dealt with the Duke as they were hawking, about a marriage to be contracted betwixt him and the Queene of Scots, as Murray also did himselfe afterwards at Hampton-Court. This Murray in private conference with the Duke, and also with some others, dissembled that he desired nothing more then that matters might be compounded in Scotland, and the Queene of Scots his dearest sister restored to her former authority, so as she would truely and heartily receive her subjects into former grace and favour, all grudges on both sides being buryed in oblivion. Neverthelesse he feared lest if she should take an husband at her owne choice out of France, Spaine, or Austria, she would revenge the wrongs she had received, alter the received Religion in Scotland, and worke great perill to England. To prevent all this, he promised his best helpe and assistance, that shee which had been marryed, first to a boy, and afterwards to a young man improvident and then frantike (for so were his words), might now at length be joyned in band of matrimony to the Duke, a man of ripe judgement; which would mainely tend to the tranquillity of both Kingdomes, the security of both Queenes, and the establishing of Religion, when he (such was his observance towards the Queene of England) would the more happily keepe Scotland in amity with the English, and the more easily drawe the Queene of Scots to the true Religion, which he had imbraced.
14. The very same things Murray secretly imparted to the Queene of Scots also by Robert Melvin, and officiously offered his service for the accomplishing thereof. But the Duke answered that he could resolve nothing touching the said marriage before such time as she had purged her selfe of the crimes objected against her. Yet the Bishop of Rosse ceassed not to draw him on all he could possibly in a manner against his will.
15. Some few dayes after, Sir Nicholas Throkmorton met the Duke at White-hall, to whom professing singular affection in all kinde of duty, he signified that he understood that the Earl of Leicester would treate with the Duke about the marriage betweene him and the Queene of Scots, which Throkmorton said was strange to him, considering that not long before Leicester had sought to compasse the same marriage for himselfe. But he friendly advised the Duke that if all fell out so, he would offer the honour of such a marriage to Leicester, who had sought it before; but if he should instantly urge it upon him that he would refuse it, in regard the Scots accused her of many crimes. Yet I (said Throkmorton) doe wish with all my heart she were joyned unto you in marriage, both that the true Religion may be preserved, and also that the Queene of Scots may wholly depend upon our Queene and none else. Neverthelesse of this I forewarne you, if you doe any thing in this matter, take Leicesters counsell afore-hand, for you will hardly of your selfe get the Queenes assent.
16. Within a day or two after, Leicester propounded the matter to the Duke, who answered according as Throkmorton had forewarned him; and when they were come to the crimes, Leicester extenuated them, and that upon the credit of Richard Candish, whose service (though suspected) he commended to the Duke. Then Leicester communicateth the matter to Pembroke, and the Duke with Arundell. They together with Throkmorton commend the Duke by Letters, to the Queene of Scots for an husband, as Murray had done before. The Duke also sent her a Letter, testifying his singular love, and most affectionately offering her all kindnesse. And ever after this time, what Letters soever he wrote unto her and received from her, he imported unto them, and often conferences they had with the Bishop of Rosse about the means of making the marriage. And in the moneth of May 1568, they propounded to the Queene of Scots by Richard Candish these Articles written by Leicesters hand.
That she should attempt nothing which might be prejudiciall to the Queene of England, or to the children borne of her, in the succession of the Kingdom of England,
That she should enter into a League of offense and defense betwixt the two Kingdomes.
That she should establish the Protestants Religion in Scotland.
That she should receive the Scots which were then adversaries, into favour.
That she should revoke her assignement of the Kingdom of England, made to the Duke of Anjou.
That she should take some man of the Nobility of England to her husband, and namely the Duke of Norfolke, the Noblest of all the Lords of England.
To these Articles if she would assent, they promised to effect that the Queene of England should also give consent thereto, and that she should ere long be restored to her Kingdome, and confirmed in the succession of England. These things she readily accepted, save that touching the League, she could answer nothing without consulting the French King. She protested there was no assignement made to the Duke of Anjou; neverthelesse if they should require it, she would procure him to renounce. She wished them first and foremost to get the Queenes assent, lest the matter might turne to her hurt, and the Duke’s, whereof she had had experience before in her marriage with the Lord Darly contracted without her assent. Yet they thought good first to feele the mindes of mo of the Nobility, of whom most gave their assent in this sort, so as the Queene were not against it. Neither indeed did the French King and the Spaniard dislike it; onely they doubted Murray, lest he, which had beene the first that propounded the matter, and promised his best assistance, would be forwardest to crosse it. But notwithstanding they all jumped in this, that Lidington, who was then looked for, should first feele the Queenes minde. In the meane while the Duke acquainteth the Lord Lumley with whatsoever was done in the matter, and with much adoe obtained of Leicester that he might consult thereof with some other friends of his; yet within a while after he discovered the matter to Cecyl, also with the assent of Pembroke.
17. At which time Leonard Dacres intertained a thought to convay the captive Queene out of custody, wherein she was kept at Whinfeld in the Country of Darby, under the Earle of Shrewsbury. Northumberland being a partner in the plot, signified the same to the Duke; but the Duke forbad it to be put in execution, fearing lest they would deliver her to the Spaniard to wife, and hoping ere long to procure Queene Elizabeths assent.
18. Soone after, the rumour of this matter came more cleerely to Queene Elizabeths eares by means of the women of the Court, who doe quickly smell out love matters. Which when the Duke understood, he earnestly importuned Leicester, both for himselfe, and also by Pembroke and Throkmorton, that matter might be forthwith broken to the Queene. Leicester made delayes, and put it off from day to day, as it were to wait for a fit opportunity. But Cecil seeing the Duke to be now perplexed in minde, advised to open the matter to the Queene himselfe, to the end that all scruple might be the sooner removed out of his own head and the Queenes. Leicester counselleth him the contrary, promising to breake the matter to the Queene in her Progresse. But while he with faire words deferred the matter from day to day, the Queene took the Duke to her bourd at Franham, and pleasantly gave him warning to beware upon what pillow he leaned his head. At length Leicester fell sicke at Tichfield, or at least-wise counterfeited himselfe to be. The Queene comming to visit him, and with comfortable words to cheere him, found his breath and blood to be retired inward through feare; to whom he opened the whole matter from the first beginning, with sighs and teares, craving pardon.
19. At which time the Queene called the Duke unto her in a gallery, and most sharpely rebuked him that he had sought the Queene of Scots in marriage without acquainting her therewith; and commanded him upon his alleageance to give over his enterprise. The Duke promised so to doe, and that willingly and gladly, and (as if he quite neglected her) stucke not to affirme that his revenewes in England were not much lesse then those of the Kingdome of Scotland, which was now miserably exhausted with warres, and that when he was in his Tennis-court at Norwich, he thought himselfe in a manner equall with some Kings. But from thenceforth, he began to be more cooled in courage; and when he perceived the Queene by her counteanance and voyce to be every day more displeased against him, Leicester in a manner alienated from him, and many of the better sort of the Nobility to withdraw themselves by little and little from his familiarity, scarcely saluting him, and soone breaking off speech with him, he purposed to goe to London without taking his leave, and lodged with the Earle of Pembroke, who bade him be of good hope, and yeelded him some comfort. And the very same day, Queene Elizabeth angrily rejected the Scottish Ambassadour, who sollicited for the delivery of the captive Queene, and bade she should beare her selfe quietly, lest she saw ere long those on whom he most leaned hop headlesse.
20. When now the rumour of the marriage waxed more and more rife, and the French Ambassadour (rather by perswasion of some Englishmen then by commandement of the French King, as shortly after came to be knowne) earnestly urged the delivery of the Queene of Scots, new suspitions were gathered from all parts, and Cecyl, who alwayes attended most carefully for the safety of the Common-wealth and Religion, bent his minde most diligently to sift out the matter. By his Letters therefore he dealt with Sussex Lord President of the North, who was most inward with the Duke, and most neerely tyed unto him in friendship, that if he understood any thing of the Dukes marriage, he should advise the Queene thereof. What answer he made I know not. But whereas it had beene observed that the Duke had had now and then secret conference at Hampton-Court with Murray Regent of Scotland, Sir George Cary the Lord Hunsdons sonne was privily sent to Murray, to draw from him whether the Duke had imparted any thing to him touching the marriage. The Duke in the meane time being terrified with a false rumour which was spred that there was a rebellion raised in the North, and being certified by Leicester that he was to be committed to the Towre, withdrewe himselfe to Norfolke, while in the meane time his friends at the Court might divert the storme that hung over him (who undertooke so to doe), and he himselfe might by submissive Letters pacifie the Queenes displeased minde. But some there were set to observe his motions and attempts, yea his very becks and gestures. When he found no comfort among his friends, and Heydon, Cornwallis, and others of the prime men of those parts perswaded him, if in ought he found himselfe guilty, to fly unto the Queenes mercy, he wavered in minde being distracted into doubtfull cares. In the meane time all the whole Court hung in suspense and feare, lest he should breake forth into rebellion; and it was determined (as the report went) if he did so, forthwith to put the Queene of Scots to death.
21. But the Duke out of his innated goodnesse, and inward conscience of his good minde, knowing that he had not offended against any law of high treason (for that Act of Henry the eighth, for not marrying with the children of the Kings sisters, or brethren, our Aunts, without the Kings privity upon paine of high treason, King Edward the sixth had repealed), and also out of feare, lest the Queene of Scots should upon suspicion be more hardly dealt withall, wrote Letters to his friends at the Court, wherein he gave them to understand that he had withdrawne himselfe home for feare of imprisonment, that he might in Time and Absence procure a remedy against malignant rumours, which are alwayes readily entertained in Court; and so most humbly craving pardon, he forthwith buckled himselfe to his journey towards the Court.
22. At Saint Alban in his returne, Owen the Earle of Arundels man, being privily sent from Throkmorton and the Lord Lumley (who was now in custody) wished him to take the fault wholly upon himselfe, and not to lay it upon Leicester or others, lest of friends he might make them his foes. There Edward Fitz-Girald the Earle of Kildares brother (Lieutenant of the Band of Gentlemen Pensioners) meeting him, received him, and led him away to Burnham three miles from Windsor (where they Queene then lay). The fourth day after, the Abbot of Dunfermelin delivered letters to the Queene from Murray Regent of Scotland, wherein he signified that the Duke had secretly dealt with him at Hampton-Court to favour his marriage with the Queen of Scots, and threatned him sore, unlesse he would favour it; that he had promised to favour it, to the end he might prevent a plot laid for his life by one Norton, as he was to returne, and so the Duke promised him that he should returne in safety, without danger of the said Norton and others; and that shortly after, the Duke did by Letters written in privy ciphers intreate him to yield his assent to the marriage. Moreover, that the Duke gave him to understand by Boyd that he would never forsake the Queene of Scots, and further, that the said Queenes ministers had in a manner perswaded him the said Regent that Queene Elizabeth had consented to the marriage, and had also given her some hope of the Kingdome of England. Queene Elizabeth found also that she had intimated to some Noblemen of England, to the end to draw them to her party, that she was in hand with that which would be for the security of the Queene and the most assured safety of both Kingdomes.
23. The Duke, which secretly and warily had intercourse of Letters (which were sent privily in Ale-bottles) with the Bishop of Rosse, Leicester, and Throkmorton, was about this time examined of his marriage with the Queene of Scots and his secret conferences with the Bishop of Rosse, and confessed most matters, and was sent to the Towre of London under the custody of Henry Nevill Knight, being sharpely reprehended for that he had departed from the Court without leave, and accused as if he sought to trouble the peace of the Land. Two dayes after, the Bishop of Rosse was in like manner examined, and Robert Ridolph that Gentleman of Florence, with whom Rosse and the others had great familiarity, was committed to Sir Francis Walsinghams custody. The Earle of Pembroke was commanded to keepe his house, and subjected to a private examination. Neverthelesse in regard of his Nobility and age, he had favour that his confession was not set downe in writing, for so he requested, in respect he could not write himselfe. Certaine Noblemen were removed from the Court as accessary to the matter, who craved pardon, confessing that they had consented with the Duke to the marriage, which Murray had first propounded; yet so, as the Duke, the Queene of Scots, and they themseves throught best that the matter should be referred to the Queene before the marriage were contracted. In like manner the Earles of Northumberland and Westmerland, who had their hands in the plot, submitted themselves to the Earle of Sussex, Lord President of the North, and besought him to make intercession for them to the Queene. Divers bookes came forth against this marriage, against the Queene of Scots, and against her Title whereby she claimed England as next heire, with such a boldnesse of spirit, that the Queene determined to prohibite them by a strict Proclamation, and suffered by way of connivence the Bishop of Rosse to answer them. Who presently set a booke against them, under the name of Morgan Philips, to maintaine the honour of the Queene his Mistresse, her Title to the succession, and the government of women (for this also was impugned). But his arguments for the Title of succession he afterwards freely confessed in his Commentaries that he had secretly drawn from Anthony Brown Lord chiefe Justice in the Common-pleas, and Carell, two most learned and judicious Lawyers.
24. In those dayes came from the Dule of Alva, Chapine Vitelli Marquesse of Celona, with out-worne Letters of the Spaniard, under colour to compound the controversies about commerce, but indeed his errand was to observe the succession of a rebellion now ready to break forth, to have the command of certaine forces which the Duke of Alva had secretly promised out of the Netherlands; who also had sent La Motte Governour of Dunkirke before (as he himselfe confessed), in the habit of a Sayler, to sound the Ports. But when it was found that this Marquesse was substituted by the Duke of Alva onely, who was also himselfe substituted with the power of a Viceregent, it was doubted whether he should be treated with as an Ambassadour. Yet the Queene signified that she would acknowledge him as the Spaniards Ambassadour. But when he shewed no other Comission but to demand the money obtained, she, being much desirous of peace, advised him to procure a more ample authority for compounding of matters. Which whilest he expected, the rumour grew rife of a Rebellion ready to breake forth in the North parts of the Land.
25. Touching the Rebellion (to fetch the matter a little higher), there arose a very slight rumour in the beginning of Autumne, which was at first neglected, for that it was without a head; but shortly after, it was increased through the frequent meetings of the Earles of Northumberland, Westmerland, and others, insomuch as Sussex the Lord President sent for them, and questioned them concerning the said rumour. Who confessed that they had heard thereof, but that they were guilty thereof they flatly denyed, and with many and deepe obtestations vowed to spend their lives for the Queene against all Rebels whatsoever. Hereupon they were sent home againe, and that with power to inquire after the authors of such a rumour. Neverthelesse the rumour increased againe in such sort that the Queene, though she thought nothing was to be rashly credited against such great men, yet she commanded them by Sussex, to come up forthwith to London, to remove all suspicion. Sussex notwithstanding (with what intent I know not) commanded them to come unto him, as it were to consult with them about the businesses of that Province. They at first made delayes, and soone after flatly denyed to come. Hereupon the Queene in haste by peremptory Letters commanded them, all excuse set apart, to appaeare presently before her, to the end she might either quite scarre them from rebellion, or else they might forthwith break into rebellion before they could gather their forces together, and the matter were growne ripe. For (as was knowne afterward) certaine auxiliary companies both from the Scottish Confederates, and also from the Duke of Alva, were privily appointed to be set on land at Hertipoole in the Bishopricke of Durresme [Durham].
26. As soone as Northumberland had read the Letters, being a man of a milde nature, and conscious of his owne gultinesse, greatly addicted to the Romish Religion, and much exasperated with a wrong done with him (as he tooke it) about a rich veyne or mine of Coper in his soyle judged from him by vertue of the Quewenes right or prerogative in Royall mines; and yet conforted [strengthened] with great hope of the Queenes clemency, he wavered in carefull doubt whether he should goe unto the Queen, or save himselfe by flight, or else breake forth into rebellion. His friends and servants being now prepared for rebellion, seeing him thus wavering and fearefull, called upon him at unawares in the dead of the night, crying that Oswold Ulstrop and Vaughan his enemies were at hand with an armed power to carry him away prisoner. They beseech him not to faile himselfe, his friends, nor the Religion of his fathers. The Catholikes (say they) are now ready prepared all over England to maintaine the Romish Religion, the bells are tumultuously rung backwards thorowout all Townes to stirre up the multitude. The Earle trembing rose out of his bed, and withdrew himselfe to a lodge in his Parke neere Topcliff, and the next night to Branspeth, an house of the Earle of Westmerlands, where many not ignorant of the matter were assembled already.
27. For to the end to gather together the silly multitude, they commanded some to arme and joyne together for the defence of the Queene, to others they signified that all the Lords of England had conspired with them for restoring the Romish Religion; to others, that they were driven of necessity to take armes, lest the ancient Nobility of England should be trodden under foot by new upstarts, and their Country delivered for a prey to strangers. Hereupon they rush into open rebellion, and are the first that disturbe the publicke peace of the Land, which now had continued unshaken the space of eleven yeeres under Queene Elizabeth, Nicholas Morton Priest thrusting them foward, who was sent from the Bishop of Rome to denounce the Queene Elizabeth to be an heretike, and thereby to have forfeited all Dominion and power. And immediately they set forth a writing, wherein they declared That they had not taken Armes with any other intent then that the Religion of their forefathers might be restored, corrupt Councellours removed from the Queene, the Duke and other faithfull Lords that were put from their ranke and degree, restored to liberty and grace. And that they attempted nothing against the Queene, to whom they vowed themselves now and ever to be most dutifull and obedient subjects. They sent Letters also to the Papists round about thorowout the whole Kingdome, exhorting them to joyne their forces with theirs. But so farre were they from associating themselves with them, that most of them sent the Letters which they received, together with the bearers, to the Queene, and every one strived who should be forwardest from all parts of the Land to offer his service and wealth against them; and so did even Norfolke himselfe, insomuch as she assuredly understood the great and singular fidelity her subjects bare her; and in that regard acknowledged with most thankefull heart the goodnesse of God toward her.
28. The Rebels went first to Durham an Episcopall See hard by, where they rent and trampled under feete the English Bibles and bookes of Common prayer, which they found in the Churches. From thence they went small journeies, celebrating Masse in all places as they came trouping together under their Colours (wherein were painted in some the five wounds of Christ, in others the Chalice), Richard Norton an old Gentlemean with a reverend gray head bearing a Crosse with a Streamer before them, as farr as Cliffordmore, not farre from Wetherbey, where the twelfth day of their rebellion they mustered their Army, and found no more but sixe hundred horse-men, and foure thousand foot. There when they certainely understood that the Queene of Scots (for whose deliverance they had taken Armes) was carryed from Tutbury to Coverntry a strong City, under the custody of the Earles of Shrewsbury and Huntingdon, that Sussex on the side of them had leavyed a strong Army against them; that Sir George Bowes had a choice power at their backes, and had fortified Bernard-Castell; and that the Lord Scoope and the Earle of Cumberland had strengthened Carleol and were leavying a power of men, they retired, and going backe almost the same way they went, came to Raby, the chiefe house of the Earle of Westmerland. From thence they turned aside, and straightly besieged Bernard-castell, which for want of victuals they soone tooke by composition, Sir George Bowes with his brother Robert, and the Garrison Souldiers, being sent away by agreement with their Armes.
29. Upon which very day, when they were now proclaimed Traitors to their Country, Sussex marched against them with seven thousand men, accompanied with Edward Earle of Rutland, the Lord Hunsdon, the Lord Evers, and the Lord Willoughby of Parham. When Sussex was come to Akland, the Rebels in fearfull manner fled to Hexham, and shortly after came dispersedly, wandring thorow by-wayes to Naworth Castell; where hearing that the Earle of Warwick and Clinton Lord Admiral pursued them in haste with twelve thousand men from the South parts of England, the two Earles with a small company, unwitting to the rest, presently withdrew themselves into the neighbour Country of Scotland. Northumberland lurked privily at Harclaw in poore cottages among the Grahams, famous theeves, by whom he was afterwards delivered into Murrays hands. Westmerland found a lurking place with Carr of Fernhurst, and Buchlui, and at length escaped with some Englishmen into the Netherlands, where he drew forth a most poore life, even to his old age, living upon a very slender pension from the Spaniard. The rest being dispersed, saved themselves, some by flight, and some by lurking in close corners. Threescore and six petty Constables and others were hanged for a terror at Durham, amongst whom the man of most note was one Plomtree a Priest. At Yorke were executed Simon Digbey, John Fulthrop, Thomas Bishop, Robert Peneman, and at London some few moneths after, Christopher and Thomas Norton, and some others else-where.
30. Afterwards, such of the Rebels as were of best note were convict of high treason and proscribed, namely Charles Earle of Westmerland, Thomas Earle of Northumberland, Anne Countesse of Northumberland, daughter to Henry Earle of Worcester, Edward Dacres of Morton, John Nevill of Leversege, John Swinborne, Thomas Markenfeld, Egremont Ratcliffe, the Earle of Sussex his brother, Christopher Nevill, Richard Norton of Norton Coniers, Christopher, Marmaduke, and Thomas of the family of the Nortons, Robert and Michael Tempest, George Stafford, and about forty more of Noble birth. These mens conviction and proscription was confirmed in the next Parliament following. The rest which had no livings, nor had fled the Land, were pardoned. Thus was the flame of this Rebellion soone extinct, while Chapine Vitelli (who as I said was privy thereunto) openly before the Queene and the Lords admired, but inwardly fretted that it was so suddenly and easily extinguished, and that his comming to England by this meanes was frustrate.
31. Out of the smothered fire of this rebellion, there breake forth as it were out of the embers a new flame at Naworth in Cumberland, neere the wall of Severus, called Picts-wall, kindled by Leonard Dacres, second sonne to William Lord Dacres of Gillesland. This Leonard Dacres (when the Lord Dacres, his nephew by his elder brother dyed, as I said, young) stomaked very much that so goodly an Inheritance was bome by Lawe to his neeces, whom the Duke of Norfolke their father in law had betrothed to his sonnes, and had commenced suite against his neeces; which when it proceeded not to his desire, he fell to plotting and practising with the Rebels, and attempted (but in vaine) to deliver the Queene of Scots out of custody. But when they had taken up the banners of rebellion sooner then he thought, and were proclaimed enemies to their Country while he was at court, he being admitted to salute the Queene, tendered her his best service against the Rebels, and in that respect was sent home againe. By the way (as was found afterwards) he imparted counsels with them by messengers that went betweene him and them, and encouraged them, promising great matters from the Ambassadours of forraine Princes, and amongst other things, that he (having leavyed men in the Queenes name) would make away the Lord Scroope Warden of the West March, and the Bishop of Carleol. Which when he could not effect, he sent Letters of commendation aftere the Earles that were flying to the Scots, seized upon the Castell of Greistoke and other houses belonging to the Dacres, fortified the Castell of Naworth as his owne Inheritance, and under colour of defending his owne and resisting the Rebels, gathered together three thousand of the Ranke-riders of the borders, and some others which were most devoted to the name of the Dacres, which in that tract was a name of great reputation.
32. Against these marched the Lord Hunsdon with the old Garrison Souldiers of Barwicke. The Rebels, not trusting to their strong holds, march forth to incounter him, and with a three-corned battell flanked on every side with horse men, receive him at the little river Gelt. The fight was maintained on both sides very sharpeley, and Leonard (though he were crooke-backed) omitted nothing that could be required in a most valiant Leader. But after very many of his men were slaine, he left the victory (though with small joy) to the Lord Hunsdon, and withdrew himselfe to Scotland hard by. From whence shortly after, he crossed the seas into the Low Countries, and dyed a poore man at Louvain. So as it seemeth his father was not much deceived, who upon his death bed prayed God to send him much sorrow for his disobedience. The Lord Hunsdon having taken in the Castels, committed them to the custody of the Duke of Norfolk’s servants, and the Queene by publicke Proclamation pardoned the multitude, whom he had excited to rebellion.
33. The Queene though she were imbroyled with this rebellion at home, yet failed she not to relieve the Protestants of France, which were now in a distressed and almost desperate estate. For she exhorted the Princes of the same Profession to take upon them the defence of the Common cause; she supplied the Queene of Navarr with money, taking Jewels in pawne for the same, and permitted Henry Champernoun (whose cousin-german Gawin had marryed the Earle of Montgomery’s daughter) to lead into France a Troupe of a hundred voluntary Gentlemen on horse-back, who had in his colours written Finem det mihi virtus, that is, Let vertue give me an end. Amongst these voluntary Gentlemen were Philip Burshide, Francis Barkley, and Walter Raleigh a very young man, who now began first to be of any eminent note. These things were not hid to the French King, who either to exhaust the wealth of England, which redounded to the reliefe of the Protestants, or at the least-wise to draw it to some other course, determined to raise a new combustion of warre in Scotland against England, by relieving the Scots which held the Castell of Dunbritton for the Queen of Scots. And to this purpose he appointed to be sent thither Sebastian Martiques, a man flourishing in Martiall glory; but he being shot at the siege of Saint John d’ Angely, this designe quite vanished away.
34. Neither was Ireland at this time free from rebellions. For Edmund and Peter Boteler, the Earle of Ormonds brethren, who had injuriously used their neighbours in Munster, refused to obey the Lawes, prosecuting the good subjects with fire and sword, and entred into a confederacy with James Fitz-Moris of the house of Desmond, Mac-Arti-More, Fitz-Edmund Senescall of Imokelly, and others, who with the Bishop of Rome and the Spaniard laboured all they could for maintenance of their Religions, and to thrust Queene Elizabeth out of her Kingdome of Ireland. Whereupon they were proclaimed Traytors, and Sir Peter Carew the elder skirmished with them sundry times with variable fortune. Neverthelesse, having gathered together certaine Companies of lewde people, they besieged Kilkenny, and commanded the Citizens to deliver Warham Saint Legers wife into their hands. But being repulsed by the Garrison Souldiers, which sallyed upon them, they pittifully spoyled the Country round about. To kindle the flame of this rebellion there, came privily from the Spaniard Juan Mendoza; and out of England to quench it, came the Earle of Ormond, who perswaded his brethren, so as they submitted themselves. Yet were they cast in prison. But the Earles continuall intercession for them to the Queene obtained that they were not brought to their tryall as their offence required; for the Earle took it very heavily that such a blot was by their meanes layd upon that most Noble family. And a meanes also to procure this favour was the neerenesse of blood between them and the Queene, who now and then joyed to draw the untained Nobility of this family to her owne glory. But the Lord Deputy sharpely pursued the remainders of this rebellion by the service of Sir Humphrey Gilbert, and soone dispersed them.
35. In Ulster also they were up in rebellion Turlogh Leinigh, after his owne lightnesse and lust of his ministers, thrusting himselfe sometimes into warre, and sometimes into peace. But he was kept within his duty, not so much by the English Garrisons, as by the Hebridians, who now and then out of those Islands into his fat Country. Against whose incursions in that part, great store of money was sent ever and anon out of England to fortifie the sea coast; but all in vaine, by meanes of a certaine infelicity, common as well to England as Ireland, where for the most part, to such publicke workes, such men doe thrust themselves forward, and are admitted, as doe sordidly preferre their owne private before the publicke good.
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