CP 152, 73
CP Volume 152 Folio 73-76
HMC Volume 1 Page 197 Number 646
Haynes Page 261 Number 251
Transcribed by Samuel Haynes in “A Collection of State Papers . . . 1542 to 1570” London, 1740
24 March 1559 A Proclamation declarying the Queen's Majesty's Purpoose to kepe Peace with France and Scotland; and to provide for the Suerty of hir Kingdomes
From a Minute of Secretary Cecill and Sir W. Petre.
ALTHOUGH it is evidently seen and judged upon, not only by the naturall borne Subjects of the Crowne of England, but also by many Strangers in all Partes of Christendome, how many and grete Occasions haue byn given now of late Tyme, and so continewed by the French, aswell to doubt and feare theire invasion of this Realme, chiefly by the Way of Scotland; as also to apply, with all spede, convenient Power to withstand the same, especially towards Scotland: Yet the Quene's most excellent Majestie considering, that ther may be Divesitie of Opinions conceaved of her Procedings in this behalfe, hath thought mete breefly and playnly to notifie hir Majeste's certayne Purpose and Intent, with the just Occasion given therof. First, hir Majestie; of her good and gracious Nature, is content to thinke that the injurious Pretences made by the Quene of Scotland to this Realme, so many Manner of Wayes, hath byne bred and issued only out of the Hartes of the Principalls of the House of Guise, to whom the chief Governance of the Croune of France now of late hath happened; and that neither the French King, being by reason of his yong Yeres not so capable of suche an Enterprise, nor the Quene of Scotts his Wief also being also in her Minoritie, nor yet the Princes of the Blud Royal, and other Estates of France (to whom hertofore in auncient Tyme the Governance of the Affaires of that Realme in the King's Minoritie hath belonged) haue imagined and intended of themselfs suche an unjust, unprobable, and so dangerous an Enterprise and Attempte as this is, and appereth to be to all indifferent Men. And considering the said House of Guise, for their own private Advancement, having no other Meane to Practise the same, but exalting of their Nece the Quene of Scotts, in whose Respecte they intermedle with the Governance of France at this present, haue thus injuriously and insolently set furth, and, in Tyme of Peace, continewed in publike Places the Armes and Clayme of these Kingdomes of England and Ireland in the Name of their Nece the Quene, beside other notable Reproches; and that (as it is by diverse and so very likely reported) without the Advise of the Princes of the King's Blud and other grete Personages, or of the sage and long experienced Counsellors of that Kingdome: And for the Prosecution of this their unjust and ambitious Purpose have also used the Auctoritie of the King and Quene their Nece (being unnaturall for her) to enterprise of the Eviction of the Crowne of Scotland out of the Power of the naturall People of the Land; and therby to procede with suche Force, as under that Collour they haue alredy partly, and partely herafter meane to send thither to invade this Kingdome of England; which although they haue caused to be unjustly and dishonorably claymed so many ways by their Nece, yet, they well know that otherwise than by the Way of Scotland, they can never effectually according to their Desires offend with any evident Daunger. Therfore hir Majestie, hauing had the Taste in many Calamities, of Godd's singuler Goodness; and knowing the Justice of hir Cause, and the naturall Obeysance and Love of hir trew Subjects; and taking these insolent Attempts to be but the Abuse of the said House of Guise, during the minoritie of the King and Quene, without any Consent of the greter Stats of France; and being most desirous of hir own Nature and Judgement to kepe Peace with all the Princes and (even in this harde Tyme of Dealing) also with the Kingdome of France and Scotland, and with all the Subjects therof, doth give to understand to all Manner of People, that although hir Majestie hath byn forced to put in Order, to her great Charge, certayn Forces both by Sea and Land, for the Save Garde of hir Kingdome, being thus impeched and challenged by Woords, and so approched with Force and manassed with moch greter from Day to Day; yet her Majestie meaneth not, nor intendeth any Manner of Crueltie, Hostilitie or Warre; but only seeketh and wisheth, and so hath diverse Tymes playnly and frendly required of the Cardinall of Lorrayn, and his Brother, and by means of them, of the French King also, that these insolent Titles and Claymes might cease and be revoked; and that ther might be such a quiet and naturall Governance graunted to the People of Scotland, that they might lyve in their due Obedience to their Sovereign Lady (which they offer) without furdder Oppression and Feare of Conquest; and consequently that the Men of Warre of France in Scotland might be revoked, being, by reason of the former Procedings of France in their Claymes agaianst this Kingdome, over Daungerous to be suffered so nigh England: And for the more spede therin, it hath bynn offered, that they should also haue safe Conducte by Water or by Land, or by bothe, with all Favour and Suertie, that might be shewed or devised for there Departure; and according to their cessing from Armes, hir Majestie's Power by Sea and Land shuld also at one Instant accordingly cease and be ceassed; and therby all unkindnes to be buried and forgotten and a stable Peace made: To whiche godly, reasonable and honorable, sundry Requests, hir Majestie can by no Meanes get any sufficient Aunswer, although moche Tyme hath bynn herin spent, to hir Majestie's excessive Charge, and to the manifest Delay of Concord. And finally hir Majestie declareth, that she doth and will kepe and contynew good Peace with the Kingdome of France, and the Kingdome of Scotland, as long as no playn Invasion shall be made by any of them upon hir Countrees Dominions, or People; and will procure by all good and fare Meanes, that Concord may be had in Scotland, and the French Men of Warre, that will withstand the same, may departe thens without Harme and in Suertie; and if they will not, then hir Majestie most of necessitie, after all these other good Means used, and after all these Delayes made by France, attempt to compell them to departe thence; and otherwise to shew no Extremitie nor Violence to any Manner of Person of France or Scotland. And therfore hir Majestie straytely chargeth all Manner hir Subjects of, what Estate foeuer they be, that they shall use with Favour and Frendship all the French King's Subjects, and shall permitt them to traffique all Trades of Merchandize within this Realme, in such forte as in Tymes of best Peace hath bynn and ought to be used, except they shall be provoked by any Hostilitie of any of the Parte of France to defend themselfs or their Countrey. And likewise that all hir Majestie's Subjects shall use good and honorable Speache of the Kingdom and Nation of France; and, altough these late intollerable Injuries hath byn committed in France against this Crown of England, yet to judge therof no otherwise, than hir Majestie of hir good Nature is pleased to thinke and judge. And finally they shall make no other Preparations to Warre, but only suche as may serve for the Defense of suche Wrongs or Attempts, as perchance shall be made, contary to hir Majesty's Expectation, upon this Realme by the French, upon the furdder Instigation of the said House of Gutse, having in their Hands the principall Governance of the King and Quene, untill it shall further appere, whither the said Kingdom and Nation of France shall meane any further playn Invasion of this Realme, and so hir Majestie's present Opinion be misconceyved. Wherof although hir Majestie woold be very sory for the hinderance of common Peace in Christendome, which she most favoreth; yet it is not to be doubted but Almighty God shall assist the Power of this Kingdome to escape all suche Daungers, and honorably, as case shall require, to avenge itself. And for better Intelligence herof to all Manner of Persons, hir Majestie hath willed this to be proclaimed in English and French, that, although the same haue ben specially declared to the French King and to the said Principalls of Guise in France, and also to the Dowager Quene in Scotland, and to all the Ambassadours of France here resident, (whereunto no sufficient Aunswer can be obteyned) yet, it shuld not be hid from others, that percase might be induced otherwise to thinke or judge than the very Truthe is. Given at Westminster the 24th of March 1559. God save the Quene.