THE DECLARATI­ONS AS WELL OF THE FRENCH KING, AS OF THE KING OF NAVARRE. Concerning the Truce agreed vpon betwene their Maiesties: And touching the pas­sage of the Riuer of Loire.


AT LONDON Printed by Richard Field, dwelling in the black-Friers, neere Ludgate.


THE FRENCH KINGS DECLARATION VPON THE TRVCE BY HIS MAIESTIE, graunted to the king of Nauarre, conteyning the speciall causes and reasons there­to moouing him.

HEnrie by the grace of God, king of France and Poland. To our trustie and welbeloued, the Officers of our courts of Parlemēt, gouernors and lieutenants general of our Prouin­ces, Bailiffes, Seneschalles, Pro­uostes, or their Lieutenants, & to all other our officers & subiects, to whom it may appertaine, Greeting. If the trueth of things be iudged by that which appeareth vnto men, as it ought to be, sith they can haue no other certaine proofe, and that to God onely it appertaineth to search the inward parts and affections of mens hearts: the since­ritie of our zeale and deuotion to the holy faith, and Catho­lique, Apostolique and Romane religion doeth sufficientlie defend it selfe against all slaunders & deceits, by the proofes which we haue yeelded from our youth, and alwaies conti­nued, as well in our life and ordinarie profession, as in fur­thering by al meanes, yea euen by armes, without sparing our owne life, the aduauncement of Gods glorie, and esta­blishment of the said Catholique, Apostolique and Roman religion in all places of this Realme, where it hath bene changed & altred through the bringing in of a new opinion, [Page 4] to our great grief & displeasure. Wherin our principal hin­derance hath not proceeded so much of the industry and force of the followers and defenders of the said new opinion, as of others, who shrowding themselues vnder a false pretēce of zeale to the said Catholique Religion, haue a long time sought to seduce the most part of our Catholique Subiects by false perswasions, and practised a League and secret as­sociation among themselues: whereof they were the chiefe­taines, vnder colour of assuring after vs (if God should call vs out of this world without issue) the preseruation of the said Catholique religion, against such of the new opinion as might pretend to succéede vs in this Crowne.

But their end and purpose tending to the vsurpation and parting of the same among themselues, after they had made them a partie among our said Catholique subiects, and vn­derpropped them selues by intelligences with strangers, who might seeke the weakening of this Realme, to en­crease their authoritie and greatnesse. They haue dis­played against our person & authoritie, the secrets of their damnable driftes: First by backbiting and misreporting our actions, to bring them into hatred with our people, and to drawe their affections to themselues vnder a plausible hope which they ioyned with the pretence of religion, viz. to ease them of the charges, which the troubles of the time had brought vpon them: yet neuerthelesse their behauiours in places vnder their commaund, were no fauourable wit­nesses of their promises in that behalfe. Then beyng vn­pacient of farther stay, they tooke and leuied armes openly against vs, the fruite whereof should principally turne to their particular profit, in respect of such aduantages & con­ditions as they would haue wrested from vs. The effect of the same importing no other then the ruine and destruction of our subiects and all aduancement of the Catholike reli­gion, against the which the continuall enterprises of the a­foresaid against vs and our auctoritie, haue debarred vs from doing that endeuour that had bene requisit to represse [Page 5] their procéedings. And in case the first assayes of their said armies were pernitious to this state, the sequele is yet more hurtfull and daungerous, hauing by their subtil­ties newly replenished France with trouble and vniuer­sall ciuill warre, seditions, contempt of magistrates, bloud, pillage, ransomings, sacke of goods both sacred and profane, forcing of women and maidens, and infinite other kinds of inhumanities and disorders, such as the like was ne­uer séene or heard of, & all to the great preiudice not one­ly of our auctoritie and royall person (against whom they haue openly declared themselues, not being ashamed to publish that they sought after our very life) but also of this florishing Crowne in generall, which they purpose to share and dismember among themselues, with the associa­tion of strangers to the great dishonour and obloquie of the French name, but specially of the nobilitie in old time of such fame and estimation through out the whole world for their vertue, prowesse and singular loue & fidelitie to their Kings: yea and which is worse, to the great detriment of the Catholike, Apostolike: Romane religion. For besides that ciuil warre corrupteth good maners, & alienateth mēs harts no lesse from all piety and reuerence to the honour of God, then from all humaine charitie: this diuision is the very meanes for those of the contrarie opinion to enlarge and ncrease their conquests. The which neuerthelesse we pur­posing to preuent to our power, and endeuoring to reduce all things into a good order, whereto through Gods grace we had brought them, and where from wée were diuerted through these present troubles, wée haue yet since the be­ginning of ye same sought al meanes to vs possible by cour­tesie to reduce all our Catholike subiects to a good & firme re­union vnder our obedience, and by the meanes of the same to put in execution that which, at their instant request we promi-sed in the assembly of our Estates.

Howbeit so farre was the hardnesse of their hartes from being mollified or bent to any compassion of so many mis­chiefes [Page 6] which they haue caused, as not cōtent with the disor­ders passed, no not with the raising of most of our townes against vs, the slaying, imprisoning or deposing of our offi­cers, the ransoming of the wealthiest of ourrealme of what degrée, state, qualitie, kind, condition or age soeuer, yea euen the Clergie, the breaking of our seales, defacing of our armes, renting and shamefull handling of our pictures, the establishing of Counsels and officers at their owne fan­tasies, the spoiling of our treasury, with all other actes of contempt, derision, hostility and cruelty: but also heaping iniury vpon iniury, they prepared to come and assaile our own person with artillery taken out of our storehouses, and armies composed as well of our said rebellious subiects as of strangers in part contrary to the Catholike, Apostolike, and Roman religion, whereof they neuerthelesse proclaime themselues the onely protectors, to the ende togither with our selues to oppresse all our good Catholike subiects and seruaunts, in stéed of addressing themselues against those of the contrary opinion whom they suffer in peace and li­berty to stretch as farre as they list, as indéed they haue not ouerslipped the occasion. For the king of Nauarre while we were preparing and furnishing our selues of forces for our warrantize against the bad intents of the said rebels, tooke and seazed vpon our townes of Niort, S. Maixant, Maillezais, Chastelleraut, Lodune, Lisle Bouchart, Mon­treuilbelay, Argenton, and Blanc in Berry, and ad­uanced his forces néere to this towne, whither we were come vpon the first day of his said exploits, to the ende to take what order we could for the stopping of him from pro­céeding any farther. Thus in the end knowing our selues vnable to performe with our weapons, at such time as we were vpon necessitie to employ them in the preseruation and defence of our owne person, together withour said good subiects and seruants against the rage and violence of the said rebels whom we found inflexible to any conditions of reconciliation, vpon such motions as we had caused to be [Page 7] made vnto them: and againe considering that albeit ourselues did know that he sought not, as they, to assault our life and authoritie, yet our said good subiects might neuer­thelesse be greatly molested by his weapōs, in case we tooke not from him all occasion to employ them according as the present estate of the affaires of this Realme did minister o­portunitie: and on the otherside being vrged & pressed by the cries and complaints of our prouinces, molested by his par­takers, to prouide some remedy, and that rather by some surcease of hostility then otherwise, without the which their force failing for to defend thēselues, togither with the meanes to entertaine men of warre, all hope of ability to sustaine their liues & families was taken from them, and some of them constrained through the violence of the euill, had of themselues compounded already. All these said rea­sons by vs brought into deliberation with the princes of our bloud, the officers of our Crowne and others of our Coun­saile about vs, among these extremities we could find no other meanes then to take and yéeld to our said subiects some release from warres on the behalfe of the sayd King of Nauarre. And therefore to the same effect wée haue graunted to him for himselfe and all his partakers a Truce and abstinence of warre and of all hostilitie, according to his request vnto vs made in acknowledgement of his duetie toward vs, and being moued with compassion for the miseries whereunto this realme is now brought, which moueth all such as yet retaine the feeling of good French­men to helpe to quench the fire of diuision that consumeth it and still threatneth the vtter ruine thereof, wherefro we neuerthelesse hope that God of his goodnesse will yet pre­serue vs to his glory against the driftes and endeuours of those who for their priuate ambition do desire and prose­cute the dissipation thereof: which Truce and abstinence from armes we meane shalbe generall throughout our Realme for the space of one whole yeare, beginning the third of this present moneth and ending at the like day [Page 8] including both the one & the other for all our good and faith­full subiects that acknowledge our authoritie, yelding vs their due obedience, as also for the state of Auignon and Countie of Venise appertaining to our holy Father the Pope, whom we will to be therein comprised, and that his said subiectes may enioy it as being vnder our protection: with this charge and condition besides promised by the said king of Nauarre, who hath vndertaken for all his parta­kers, that he shall not during the said Truce employ his power or armies in any place either within or without this Realme without our commaundemēt or consent: That he shall not enterprise or suffer to be enterprised or attempted any thing in such place & places of the coūtreys where our authoritie is acknowledged. And that wheresoeuer he shall passe or soiourne, except in those places which he held before the day aforesaid, he shall not change or permit any change or alteration in matter concerning the Catholicke Aposto­licke and Romane Religion, neither that any harme or molestation be offered to our Catholicke subiects, Clergie­men, or others that abide faithfull vnto vs or are good ser­uaunts, either in their persons, goods or otherwise howsoe­uer: that if during this warre he or his do take any townes, castles, or other places by force, surprise or intelligence, either do enter in what sorte soeuer, he shall immediatly leaue & permit them to be in our frée disposition, according as he hath promised vs. That in respect of the premisses the said king of Nauarre and his partakers shall haue the benefite of their goods, and the same to enioy so long as the said Truce shall continue: As also interchangeably they shall permit the Catholicks both Clergie men & others our good seruaunts to enioy their goods and reuenewes in those places that they do hold.

We farther will & command you, that euery one of you so farre as it may concerne him, to obserue and procure the obseruing of the said Truce and abstinence of armes with all the contents aboue mentioned from point to point, ac­cording [Page 9] to the forme and tenour thereof without gainsay­ing or suffering any gainsaying of the same. Also to pro­cure these presentes to be read, published and enrolled, according as néed shall require, to the end no man pretend any cause of ignoraunce: By the which we protest that be­side so much as concerneth the defence of our person and estat against the violence of the said rebells, we haue bene also moued to make and agrée to the said Truce for the be­nefite that redoundeth to our Catholicke, Apostolicke & Ro­mane Religion, and the relief of our good subiects, as there­by hauing stopped the progresse which the king of Nauarre & his partakers without this present remedy might haue made to the great detriment of our Religiō, & the oppressiō of our said good subiects, whilest our forces, occupied about the effect aforesaid, could not haue bene opposed against him: We do moreouer protest against the said rebells for their infringing of the vnion of all Catholicke subiectes, sworne and confirmed to vs by the Deputies of our Ge­nerall Estates in their last assembly: as also we vrge them to reioyne themselues vnder our authoritie for the preser­uation and aduauncement of the Catholicke Apostolicke and Romane Religion, for that they onely are guiltie be­fore God of all the calamitie that may ensue of the said de­uision to the preiudice of his honour and his holy Church, whereof the warre that they make against vs is the onely cause. Remaining for our owne part fully resolued ne­uer to depart from any one poinct that may appertaine to the preseruation and exaltation of the said Catholicke A­postolick and Romane Religion, and to perseuere in this holy entent through Gods grace, which we continually implore to our helpe for this effect vnto the last gaspe of our life. And for asmuch as in many and diuerse pla­ces they may haue néede of these presentes, wée will that vpon the sight thereof being duely examined by one of our welbeloued and trustie Notaries or Secretaries, [Page 10] credit be giuen therto, as to this present original: For such is our pleasure.

Thus Signed.
And vnderneath, By the king.
And sealed vpon a single lable with the great seale in yealow waxe.

A DECLARATI­ON OF THE KING OF NAVARRE, VPON THE treatise of the Truce made betweene the French king, and the said L. king of Nauarre.

HEnrie by the grace of God, King of Nauarre, first Prince of the bloud, chiefe Péere, and protector of the re­formed churches of Fraunce, &c. To all Gouernors of Prouinces, Cap­tains of townes & cities, fortresses and castles, Chieftaines and leaders of men of warre, Maiors, Consuls, and sworne men of townes, Iusti­ces and officers, as well of our soueraigne Lord the king, as to all others to whom it may appertaine, & that are vnder our authoritie and protection, Gréeting. Whereas it is wel knowen to all men that we neuer tooke or retayned armes in this miserable warre, but so farre as necessitie enforced vs: Also, that we haue by our actions sufficiently testified our extreame sorow, séeing our selues entangled, and bound thereto through the malice of the enemies of this Realme. On the other side, the desire that we had to be able to serue his Maiestie against them for the reestablishing of his au­thoritie, and the rest and tranquilitie of his good Subiectes: yet such was the mischiefe, that our good meaning was by sundrie sleights disguised, & the bad mindes of the said ene­mies [Page 12] so farre cloaked vnder beautifull and fauourable pre­tences, that this Realme was brought to the point of ineui­table ruine, had not the wisdome of our said soueraign Lord the king, sundrie times contraried and crossed with infinite lets, bene sufficient to discerne our innocencie from among their slaunders, he had not also euen through their coulors and dissimulations espied their inueterate malice: And it is most euident that this warre begun vnder colour of religiō, is euen at once found to be méere warre of estate: That those of the League are not gone to séek or assaile those of the religion which we professe, but haue abused both the wea­pons and authoritie which were to that end deliuered vnto them, to get such townes of this realme as were farthest of and least suspected for religion: as litle also haue they em­ployed their preachers in the conuersion of those whom they did pretend to be hereticks, but contrariwise they haue vsed them in all townes to the subuersion of this realme, as fire­brandes to kindle the estate, to suborne the subiects against their prince, to make them reiect all obedience to their ma­gistrates, to frame them to seditions and alterations, with­out any respect to confound all things both diuine and hu­maine: whereby haue happened to the great griefe of all good men, an incredible reuolt throughout this nation a­gainst our soueraigne Lord the king, and consequently such a confusion in sundry townes and prouinces that the pre­tended shadow of piety and iustice hath quite extinguished the body, the feare of God, the reuerence of his true image, and the lawfull and soueraigne Magistrate by him insti­tuted in these extremities: wherevpon acknowledging our duetie vnto our said soueraigne Lord the King, and euen from the bottome of our hart bewayling the calamitie of this estate and people, we haue withdrawen our selues vn­to his Maiestie, and at his féete presented him our liues and goods to assist him against his enimies, for the reestablish­ment of his authoritie and his good subiects. Protesting, as before we had done, to intend to no other but his seruice: as [Page 13] also euery man may iudge that if we had otherwise meant, we had fit occasiō to helpe our selues by ye publike miseries: who did vs this honor to acknowledge vs & willingly to ac­cept of our good willes: also to ye end to giue vs better means to serue him, he resolued vpon a Truce or abstinence of warre with all hostilitie, whereof we hope through Gods helpe, of a good peace to ensue. Therefore that wée giue you to wit, and to all and euery of you which acknowledge our authoritie and protection, and that haue and doe follow that part which we vphold, euery one for himselfe, that we haue treated, decreed and concluded with our soueraigne Lord the King, vpon a truce or abstinence generall from armes throughout this land for one whole yeare, to begin the third day of Aprill, and to end vpon the like day, as well the one as the other therein concluded. Wherein also our meaning is to comprise the state and Countie of Venise with the subiects thereof as being vnder the protection of our said soueraigne Lord the King: & so consequently we doo forbid all persons of whatsoeuer estate or calling, not to attēpt or enterprise against those places where his Ma­iesties authoritie is acknowledged, neither against the said state or Countie of Venise, or in any other place or places where we shall enter, passe by, or soiourne, expresly cōman­ding that there be nothing enterprized against his good and loyal subiects, no not against ye Clergie, neither to innouate or interrupt any thing concerning the Catholike Romane religiō, as also in case by Gods grace we enter whether by surprize, force or otherwise into any hold or towne occupied by the enimies, our meaning is there shall be no alteration in the seruice or other matter belonging to the said Catho­like Romane religion, according as more at large haue by vs béene concluded with our soueraigne Lord the King. Also whereas in consequence of the premisses it hath plea­sed his Maiestie to graunt and yéeld a generall enioyment of their goods, & to all those of the religion which we do pro­fesse and others of this partie, to enioy the same during this [Page 14] present truce, our intent reciprocally is that al his good sub­iects as well of the Clergie, as other shall enioy their goods and reuenues during the same in those places that we doe hold, whereof besides these presents we will dispatch them all letters necessary.

Moreouer we commaund you & euery of you so farre as to him appertaineth, to cause these presents to be read, pu­blished, inrolled, kept and obserued in euery point accor­ding to their forme and tenure, ceasing and causing to cease al troubles and impeachments to the contrarie. In witnesse whereof we haue caused these Presents, signed with our owne hande, to be sealed with our Seale of armes. Gi­uen at Saulmur this 24. of April in the yere of grace. 1589.

Thus signed.
And vnderneath,
And sealed vpon a single lable with the said Lordes great seale in redde waxe.

THE KING OF NA­VARRES DECLARATION AT THE PASSAGE OF THE RIVER of Loire for the seruice of his Maiestie the 18. of Aprill. 1589.

HEnry by the grace of God king of Nauarre, &c. To all those to whom these presents shall come, gréeting. As it hath pleased God to cause vs to be borne first Prince of the bloud, and chief Péer of Fraunce: whom nature hath taught to defend his king, law and due­tie do bind to maintaine the Estate of this Realm: and that it may be apparant by the effects knowē to euery one, that the disturbers whatsoeuer pretence they take, shot at no o­ther thing but his Maiesties life and Crowne, neither pur­pose any other then the dissipation and vsurping of this Estate, whereof can ensue no other then the confusion of all things both deuine and humane, the extinguishing of all or­der pollicie and iustice, and the vtter ruine of each one in particular and of all the good subiects of this Realme in ge­nerall, euen such as euery one doth foresée and in hart be­waile, yea and the most part do in effect already féele it in their goods, liues, honours and liberties.

For this cause, wee being called of God, nature and lawe, to so necessary a worke, haue resolued with our sel­ues to employ our liues, goods and abilities vpon the resta­blishment of the king our soueraigne Lordes authoritie, the restauration of this Realme, the preseruation and deliue­rance [Page 16] (so farre as in vs may lye) of all the good subiects of the same against those who so openly haue attempted against the person of his Maiestie, and dared to enterprise the vsur­pation of his Realme, and brought almost to the point of in­euitable ruine so many poore people, which God of his grace hath vnited & preserued in so many ages vnder the sacred and inuiolable lawes of this Realme.

We declare that we haue not, neither will hold for ene­mies any other then those who by their effects haue proclai­med & openly declared themselues enemies to this Realme: who haue so much as in them lyeth, extinguished and blot­ted out the name of the king, of the soueraigne Magistrate giuen vs of God, heretofore sacred to our nation, disgraded his Parliaments and soueraigne Courts, so farre forth as to haue cruelly slaine the principall personages, against whose dignitie and life, whether for their Estate, or for their deserts, no théeues or barbarous people or vtter enemies to mankind would haue enterprised: to haue broken & defa­ced the seales of the Realme, the sacred instruments of so­ueraigne iustice, violating and profaning, so farre as they might, euen iustice it selfe: and to be brief, so cōfounding all things that wheresoeuer their power taketh place there re­steth nothing but sacke, bloud, furie and insolencie, desola­tion among the people, carcases in the townes, mourning and lamentation in all families, and combustion and vni­uersall horror among all sortes. Against these persons do we oppose our iust weapons: against these do wo denounce warre with all rigour, and against these do we inuite and adiure all good Frenchmen the kings faithfull seruaunts, louers of their countrey and defenders of the good lawes thereof to assist vs with their vowes, weapons and wealth: as being resolued and assured that GOD will blesse vs and giue vs grace vnder the kings authoritie to chastise them according to their desert, and that he will no longer suffer so many mischiefs vnpunished, mischiefs committed vnder a false semblant of goodnesse, sacriledges and impie­ties [Page 17] vnder the sacred names of pietie and iustice. Neuer­thelesse in as much as we are not ignorant, but that many may haue bene entangled in these enormities, some being transported by furie, others ouercome by a iust feare, and the most part rather suborned by subtletie, then lead by their owne mallice: as also we can not thinck that Fraunce is so degenerated as maliciously of set purpose to renounce her fidelitie and loyaltie to her naturall Prince, that is to say, to the inheritance and patrimonie of her fathers.

We, vpon a desire to separate, so farre as lieth in vs, the innocent from the guiltie, and with all discretion to vse the iust sword that God hath put into our hand for the seruice of our soueraigne Lord the king, & the preseruation of his subiects, doe signifie to all Prouinces, townes, commu­nalties, clergie men, nobilitie, and men of law, captains of men of warre, citizens, burgesses, and all other persons of whatsoeuer condition, estate, or calling, that with all spéede they retire from all communication and felowship with the said enemies, disturbers of this estate, and reunite them­selues vnder his Maiesties obedience, geuing him assurance of their fidelitie and seruice. In so doing, as also being by them duely certified, we will carefully preserue them ac­cording to such order as we haue from him, and doo desire to employ vnder his commandements: otherwise, in case they shew themselues either obstinate or carelesse, we denounce against them all the mischiefe that may incurre by the ri­gor of armes, as worthie to participate in the iust punish­ments of those, to whose iniustice and violence they shal mi­nister either consent or countenance. We doe consequently entend to preserue and maintaine all the good subiects and seruants of our soueraigne Lord the king: also, those that shall (as is aforesaid, reunite themselues vnto him) in their goods, liues, honors, liberties, religion & consciences, without exception or acception whatsoeuer: especially those of the Clergie, of whom we wil the rather take care, because they are more commonly opposed to the extremitie of warre. [Page 18] Prouided also, that for their partes they remember to loue peace, and modestly to conteyne themselues within their boundes, whereas some of them, to the great reproch of their vocation, are become the instruments of these disorders.

We doe expresly forbid all our men of warre, and other our adherents in this our pursuite, not to attempt or enter­prise any thing against the kings said good subiects and ser­uants, and others to him reconciled as aforesaid of whatsoe­uer state or condition: namely against the said clergimen, or the places appointed to the vse of their ecclesiasticall ser­uice, wherein we will not that they be any whit molested, vnder paine to the infringers of these Presents, of punish­ment and correction according to the exigence of the case and the rigor of our martiall lawes. As also, we do most straightly commaund our lieutenants generall, gouernors, officers of our armie, heads and captains, and all other per­sons of commaund, diligētly to set to their hands euery one in his calling: vnder paine to the said heads and captaines, through whose negligēce or winking at causes any mishap may fall, to answere therfore in their own names & persōs. Neuerthelesse, admonishing the said good subiects and ser­uants of the king our soueraigne Lord, of all degrées & cal­lings, & all that are to him recōciled as is aforesaid, to helpe to distinguish the good from the bad, & to preuent the incon­ueniēces which may more easilie be stopped then amended, also in time to retire to vs, and to our said lieutenants, go­uernors and officers, to the end to be furnished of pasports, warrants, and necessarie dispatches: intending neuerthe­lesse, that our soueraigne Lord the Kings warrants, made since the date of these presents, shalbe inuiolably kept & ob­serued, vnder paine of rigorous punishment to the brea­kers of the same.

We do here beséech all states & degrées of this Realme to set before their eyes the dommage that hath and con­sequently will more and more ensue in euery of them by their confusions. The Clergie to consider how pietie is sti­fled [Page 19] among weapons, Gods name blasphemed, & Religion contemned, euery one practising to play with the sacred name of faith, when they sée the greatest take it for a pre­tence to shadow the most execrable infidelitie that may be. The Nobilitie to note what a fall their order hath lately had, when armes, either the badges of hereditary Nobilitie or the rewards of vertue, are as it were trailed through the mire, committed to a communalties hands, who from liber­tie will passe to licence, & from licence will giue themselues ouer to all insolencie, without further respect (as hath bene sene already) of desert or calling. The Magistrates, what théeuery is crept in at the gate of common weale, when in the chamber of the Péers of this Realme, where the greatest vpō reuerence to iustice, do leaue of their swords, an Attur­ney shall enter in armes accompanied with twentie rascals & cary his sword to the throat of the Parliament of France, and in triumph lead it away in red robes to the Bastille: when a chief Presidēt shalbe murthered, trailed about, and hanged at Tholouze (one that was a zelous follower of his Religion, if euer there were any, and the most formall ene­my of the contrary) by the conspiracie of a Bishop: and with what shew of heresie? Oh monsters of furie, crueltie and barbarousnesse, who neuerthelesse can not liue long, vnlesse peraduenture by some shamefull memory to this world & to the nation that hath borne and doth support them, dete­stable wheresoeuer it commeth to the posteritie. The third Estate, who at the least were to take profite of these do­mages, let them looke whether they be eased of their taxes & subsidies, whether they be discharged of the men of warre, whether their shoppes in the townes, or their farmes in the countrey be in better case, whether the treasury be better husbanded then aforetime: nay contrariwise whether de­uourings be not doubted, whether the grasse groweth not before their gates, whether for one hand that was wont to grope in ye treasury there be not thrée: whether it that they call husbāding be not the sacking of good houses giuen to por­ters, [Page 20] and the ransoming of good men that grone vnder these disorders: A matter that can not continue many dayes, which expired, the communaltie being fleshed in the spoyle of those whom they terme Politicks, as wolues vpon carrion, and their booties failing them, wil cruelly & without respect fall vpon all that be of any countenance. Let those townes that haue taken their parte remember in what state they were before, and in what they be now: The traffick (who so list to séeke it) in the midst of a forrest? Iustice, in ye dungeōs of the Bastill? Learning, where barbarousnesse possesseth all? yet be these the meanes that haue brought them to so great glorie and wealth: yea euen the meanes that onely could therein enterteine them: At this day it is heresie to be a Politick: but the pollicie that had brought them to their flower is runne to contempt: Shortly it will be an vnpar­donable trespasse to be ritch. Moreouer if they haue any gar­rison their libertie perisheth, and the lickerousnesse of this word hath made them lose it: If they haue no garrison, then are they a pray, oppressed with gardes and badly kept, at euery moment in daunger of surprise: and thus behold an imaginary libertie in stead of a prison. Neither shall the fields haue any better bargaine, if this mischief continue. A king cannot abide to be disgraded by his subiectes: Rigour must be set against rigour, and force against force: The li­centiousnesse, excesse and disorders of these perturbers will draw on others: Against the vsurpation of a straunger his Maiesty must be succoured by straungers: against the Spa­niardes drifts with Suitzers and Germaines: our fieldes shall become forrests, & our warres yong springs, a disease common to the laborer and the burgesse, to the Gentleman and the Clergie: a disease that will multiply robberies in the fieldes and rages in the townes: then woe to the auctors and fauorers of these miseries: the people will conuert this fury against them, and with their bloud will redéeme their abolition, their owne peace and life, and to their costes they shall sée what it is to wrest the scepter from the soueraigne, [Page 21] and the sword from the Magistrate therewith to arme and authorise the licentiousnesse of the people.

Marke their imaginations, after they haue plucked the king out of his throne, they haue left the place empty: aske then whom in conscience they will place therein: the Duke of Mayenne? What prince is there in Christendome that will not withstand it? that knoweth not himselfe to be hurt in this example? Of our nobilitie, how many families be there that will not obey the house of Lorraine? much lesse the varlet of varlets? ye houses honored with the alliance of our kings and princes about vs, who also haue this arti­cle aboue the rest. That they are borne French and haue perseuered in their birth, what a hart breaking will it be for such to stoupe vnder so weake a yooke? to sée their liues and honours at the discretion of these vpstarts? whom na­ture hath made their equals, whose sworde the law of the Realme hath measured with the same foot, whom God hath no way preferred before them saue onely in that he hath geuen them ouer to their owne presumption. How ma­ny princes of the house of Bourbon must they pierce before they come there? Princes I say armed with right, with cou­rage and with credite against this imaginatiue Chimere of vsurpation, for whose bloud the nobilitie wil hazard theirs: the Nobilitie which in like alterations findeth it selfe still buried with the Monarchie: Nobility, whose honour and degrée is tied to that of our kings: Nobility which to be briefe can not hope to kéepe that degrée ouer the commons which God hath giuen it, when it shall sée their soueraigne, him of whō it holdeth the sword cast headlong from his. Let euery man hold his peace: let vs suffer them at leasure to do what they list. If they will ground their vsurpation vpō Charlemains pretēses, how will they agrée with the Duke of Lorraine and his children? how? albeit they will agrée with the braunch of Vaudemont? Againe if they thinke the crowne due to the deserts, to the labours & to the vertues, that is to say, to the late Duke of Guises Monopoles, how [Page 22] can they frustrate his heyre? but who doubteth that all the varlets of the house pretend not a share, that is, that they are not resolued to rent asunder the state and to share out the péeces?

O Frenchmen, imagine what your estate shall then be. These chaunges out of one extremity into an other are ne­uer made without a most violent ouerthrow: the house wherein we are now lodged cānot be ouerthrowen but we shall be oppressed therein. Our bodies turne not to wormes and serpents before death catcheth hold: these serpents can not be borne, neither procéede out of the body of this estate before it be dissolued, perished and rotten, and that wée all which do not liue, other then in it, must runne to ruine. It is very easie to desire a crowne: it is very easie for a people moued and passionate against their Prince, to thinke vpon the alteration of the Estate. Betwéene an ambitious desire and the accomplishment thereof, betwéene your hasty chol­lers, and your reuenges so far of, how many daies workes and battels? what plenty of bloud, sacke and misery? the ages of the world will not suffise to decide this quarrell: the sonne will take the fathers place, and the brother the bro­thers: you shall make a perpetuall confusion to the poste­ritie which shall curse the memory of your madnesse.

And how much more conuenient for you were it to a­bridge so many calamities with a peace? a peace which out of the darke Chaos wherein you haue plunged your selues, might reduce you into the light, which might restore you to your selues, to your nature & to your sences, which might deliuer you out of these disquietnesses wherein you are, frō this labyrinth wherinto you are entered, which you do wel déeme you can not get out of, & whereof in the meane while you sée not the end: a peace which might replant euery one in that he loueth: might restore to ye husbandmā his plough, to the artificer his shop, to the marchant his traffick, to the countrie assurance, to the townes gouernment, & to all men indifferently vpright iustice: a peace that might returne you [Page 23] the kings fatherly loue, to him the obedience & fidelitie that you owe him: to be briefe, a peace that might render to this estate both soule and body: the body which through these ambitious is haled in a thousand péeces: the soule, I meane the good order that hath preserued it, which from the highest degrée to the lowest runneth all to confusion.

These things considered, euery one sounding the very bottome, whether it be the euil that he doth himselfe, or that he is to suffer: in these confusions we assure our selues that they who hitherto haue persisted in their dueties to his Ma­iestie, will double their affections and courage to serue him from good to better against his enimies: that they who vn­der simplicity haue let themselues run into their practises, would not be instruments of their owne destruction, by vn­dermining the foundation of this estate to pull it vpō their owne heads, but will rather abandon so bad a faction, & haue recourse to his Maiesties clemency, who still kéepeth the gate open to all that séeke it.

As for such as obstinately shall persist enemies to the king, to this Realme & to their owne good, as they shall most iustly purchace Gods wrath & the hatred of man, so are they to expect no other but a fearefull iudgement from aboue worthy their merites, which God for his mercy hasten vpon the obstinate, to the abridging of so many mischiefs and mi­series, & to the weale, peace, & quiet of so many poore people.

In respect of our selfe, we protest that ambition armeth vs not: sufficiētly haue we shewed that we do despise it, & it is honour enough to vs to be that we are, neither can ye ho­nour of this Estate perish but we must decay. And so litle, (God is our witnesse) are we lead by reuēge that none hath receaued more wrongs & iniuries thē we, neither hath any hitherto made lesse pursuite: neither shal any be more libe­rall to forgiue the enemies, if they amend, in any case that may cōcerne the tranquilite & peace of France. That which afflicteth vs, which we can neither sée nor foresée without teares, is that this Estate shalbe brought to that point that [Page 24] its harme is so growen and stubburne, that it can not be holpen without great mischief.

From these mischiefes doo we protest against the wound and those that made it: he that made the wound is guiltie of the fire, the corosiue, the incisions, and the griefes that ne­cessarilie they make. It sufficeth, and euery one may sée it, that in that little which we may, we bring the care of the good surgeon that loueth the patient. The enemies in deede that loue the disease, will, besides the iron, bring both hatred & fraud, as they that cā haue no contentatiō but in their am­bition ouer this estate, neither can they content thmselues but in her sinall death, a death which we will redéeme with the price of our life and all our goods. But rather (as we trust in God the preseruer of kings and kingdoms) we shal shortly as the fruite of our labours, sée the king in his due authority, whereto he is borne, and the Realme in like force and dignitie as heretofore, to the contentment of all good Frenchmen, the comfort of such numbers of poore people, & the hart breaking of such as doe couet the ruine thereof.

We doe therefore beséech the Lordes of the Courtes of Parlement, all gouernors, lieutenants generall of the prouinces, chambers of accompts, courts of aides, trea­sourers generall of Fraunce, prouostes, bailiffes, sene­schalles, iudges, maiors, sheriffes, iurats, consuls, headbo­roughs, bodies and communalties of townes, and all other iustices and officers my Lord the Kings subiectes, to assist, fauour, & leane vnto vs, for the benefite of his affaires and seruice: For such is our desire.

Thus signed HENRIE.
By the king of Nauarre, first Prince of the bloud, and chiefe Peere of Fraunce.

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