The Rise of the Dutch Republic — Volume 25: 1577, part II
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The Rise of the Dutch Republic — Volume 25: 1577, part II

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The Project Gutenberg EBook The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1577 #27 in our series by John Lothrop Motley
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Title: The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1577
Author: John Lothrop Motley
Release Date: January, 2004 [EBook #4827] [Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first
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The Project Gutenberg EBook The Rise of theDutch Republic, 1577 #27 in our series by JohnLothrop MotleysCuorpey triog chth leacwk st haer ec ocphyarniggihnt gl aawll so fvoerr  ytohue r wcooruldn.t rByebefore downloading or redistributing this or anyother Project Gutenberg eBook.vTiheiws inhge atdhiesr  Psrhoojeulcdt  bGeu ttehne bfierrsgt  tfihlien. gP lseeaesne  wdho ennotremove it. Do not change or edit the headerwithout written permission.Please read the "legal small print," and otherinformation about the eBook and ProjectGutenberg at the bottom of this file. Included isimportant information about your specific rights andrestrictions in how the file may be used. You canalso find out about how to make a donation toProject Gutenberg, and how to get involved.**Welcome To The World of Free Plain VanillaElectronic Texts****eBooks Readable By Both Humans and ByComputers, Since 1971*******These eBooks Were Prepared By Thousandsof Volunteers*****Title: The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1577
Author: John Lothrop MotleyRelease Date: January, 2004 [EBook #4827] [Yes,we are more than one year ahead of schedule][This file was first posted on March 26, 2002]Edition: 10Language: English*E*B* OSTOAK RTT HOE FD TUHTEC HP RROEJPEUCBTL IGC,U 1T5E7N7B *E**RGThis eBook was produced by David Widger<widger@cecomet.net>[NOTE: There is a short list of bookmarks, orpwiosinht teor ss, aamt tphlee  tehned  aouft thhoer' sfi lied efoars  tbheofsoer ew hmoa kminagyan entire meal of them. D.W.]PMrOojTeLctE YG'uSt eHnIbSeTrOg REYd itiOoFn , TVHoEl.  N27ETHERLANDS,THE RISE OF THE DUTCH REPUBLIC, 1577
By John Lothrop Motley55811577 [CHAPTER II.]Triumphal entrance of Don John intoBrussels—Reverse of the picture —Analysisof the secret correspondence of Don Johnand Escovedo with Antonio Perez—Plotsagainst the Governor's liberty—Hisdesponding language and gloomyanticipations—Recommendation of severemeasures—Position and principles of Orangeand his family— His private views on thequestion of peace and war—His toleration toCatholics and Anabaptists censured by hisfriends—Death of Viglius—New mission fromthe Governor to Orange—Details of theGertruydenberg conferences—Nature andresults of these negotiations—Papersexchanged between the envoys and Orange—Peter Panis executed for heresy—Threeparties in the Netherlands— Dissimulation ofDon John—His dread of capture.As already narrated, the soldiery had retireddefinitely from the country at the end of April, afterwhich Don John made his triumphal entrance intoBrussels on the 1st of May. It was long since sofestive a May-day had gladdened the hearts ofBrabant. So much holiday magnificence had not
been seen in the Netherlands for years. A solemnprocession of burghers, preceded by six thousandtroops, and garnished by the free companies ofarchers and musketeers, in their picturesquecostumes, escorted the young prince along thestreets of the capital. Don John was on horseback,wrapped in a long green cloak, riding between theBishop of Liege and the Papal nuncio. He passedbeneath countless triumphal arches. Bannerswaved before him, on which the battle of Lepanto,and other striking scenes in his life, wereemblazoned. Minstrels sang verses, poets recitedodes, rhetoric clubs enacted fantastic dramas inhis honor, as he rode along. Young virgins crownedhim with laurels. Fair women innumerable wereclustered at every window, roof, and balcony, theirbright robes floating like summer clouds abovehim. "Softly from those lovely clouds," says agallant chronicler, "descended the gentle rain offlowers." Garlands were strewed before his feet,laurelled victory sat upon his brow. The sameconventional enthusiasm and decoration which hadcharacterized the holiday marches of a thousandconventional heroes were successfully produced.The proceedings began with the church, and endedwith the banquet, the day was propitious, thepopulace pleased, and after a brilliant festival, DonJohn of Austria saw himself Governor-General ofthe provinces.Three days afterwards, the customary oaths, to bekept with the customary conscientiousness, wererendered at the Town House, and for a briefmoment all seemed smiling and serene.
There was a reverse to the picture. In truth, nolanguage can describe the hatred which Don Johnentertained for the Netherlands and all theinhabitants. He had come to the country only as astepping-stone to the English throne, and he neverspoke, in his private letters, of the provinces or thepeople but in terms of abhorrence. He was in a"Babylon of disgust," in a "Hell," surrounded by"drunkards," "wineskins," "scoundrels," and the like.From the moment of his arrival he had strainedevery nerve to retain the Spanish troops, and tosend them away by sea when it should be nolonger feasible to keep them. Escovedo shared inthe sentiments and entered fully into the schemesof his chief. The plot, the secret enterprise, wasthe great cause of the advent of Don John in theuncongenial clime of Flanders. It had been,therefore, highly important, in his estimation, toset, as soon as possible, about theaccomplishment of this important business. Heaccordingly entered into correspondence withAntonio Perez, the King's most confidentialSecretary of State at that period. That theGovernor was plotting no treason is sufficientlyobvious from the context of his letters: At the sametime, with the expansiveness of his character,when he was dealing with one whom he deemedhas close and trusty friend, he occasionally madeuse of expressions which might be made to seemequivocal. This was still more the case with poorEscovedo. Devoted to his master, and dependingmost implicitly upon the honor of Perez, heindulged in language which might be tortured into a
still more suspicious shape when the devilish artsof Perez and the universal distrust of Philip weretending steadily to that end. For Perez—on thewhole, the boldest, deepest, and mostunscrupulous villain in that pit of duplicity, theSpanish court—was engaged at that moment withPhilip, in a plot to draw from Don John andEscovedo, by means of this correspondence, theproofs of a treason which the King and ministerboth desired to find. The letters from Spain werewritten with this view—those from Flanders wereinterpreted to that end. Every confidential letterreceived by Perez was immediately laid by himbefore the King, every letter which the artful demonwrote was filled with hints as to the danger of theKing's learning the existence of thecorrespondence, and with promises of profoundsecrecy upon his own part, and was thenimmediately placed in Philip's hands, to receive hiscomments and criticisms, before being copied anddespatched to the Netherlands. The minister wasplaying a bold, murderous, and treacherous game,and played it in a masterly manner. Escovedo waslured to his destruction, Don John was made to frethis heart away, and Philip—more deceived than all—was betrayed in what he considered hisaffections, and made the mere tool of a man asfalse as himself and infinitely more accomplished.Almost immediately after the arrival of Don John inthe Netherlands; he had begun to express thegreatest impatience for Escovedo, who had notbeen able to accompany his master upon hisjourney, but without whose assistance the
Governor could accomplish none of hisundertakings. "Being a man, not an angel, I cannotdo all which I have to do," said he to Perez,"without a single person in whom I can confide." Heprotested that he could do no more than he wasthen doing. He went to bed at twelve and rose atseven, without having an hour in the day in whichto take his food regularly; in consequence of allwhich he had already had three fevers. He wasplunged into a world of distrust. Every mansuspected him, and he had himself no confidencein a single individual throughout that whole Babylonof disgusts. He observed to Perez that he was atliberty to show his letters to the King, or to readthem in the Council, as he meant always to speakthe truth in whatever he should write. He was surethat Perez would do all for the best; and there issomething touching in these expressions of anhonest purpose towards Philip, and of generousconfidence in Perez, while the two were thusartfully attempting to inveigle him into damagingrevelations. The Netherlanders certainly had smallcause to love or trust their new Governor, whovery sincerely detested and suspected them, butPhilip had little reason to complain of his brother."Tell me if my letters are read in Council, and whathis Majesty says about them," he wrote; "and,above all, send money. I am driven to desperationat finding myself sold to this people, utterlyunprovided as I am, and knowing the slow mannerin which all affairs are conducted in Spain."iHn et hinef oNremtheedr ltahne dKs,i nag ntdh tath atth ehree  wwaass  cbaullte od nteh eman
Prince of Orange. To him everything wascommunicated, with him everything wasnegotiated, opinions expressed by him wereimplicitly followed. The Governor vividly describedthe misgivings with which he had placed himself inthe power of the states by going to Louvain, andthe reluctance with which he had consented tosend away the troops. After this concession, hecomplained that the insolence of the states hadincreased. "They think that they can do and undowhat they like, now that I am at their mercy," hewrote to Philip. "Nevertheless, I do what youcommand without regarding that I am sold, andthat I am in great danger of losing, my liberty, aloss which I dread more than anything in the world,for I wish to remain justified before God and men."He expressed, however, no hopes as to the result.Disrespect and rudeness could be pushed nofurther than it had already gone, while the Prince ofOrange, the actual governor of the country,considered his own preservation dependent uponmaintaining things as they then were. Don John,therefore, advised the King steadily to makepreparations for "a rude and terrible war," whichwas not to be avoided, save by a miracle, andwhich ought not—to find him in this unpreparedstate. He protested that it was impossible toexaggerate the boldness which the people felt atseeing him thus defenseless. "They say publicly,"he continued, "that your Majesty is not to befeared, not being capable of carrying on a war, andhaving consumed and exhausted every resource.One of the greatest injuries ever inflicted upon uswas by Marquis Havre, who, after his return from
Spain, went about publishing everywhere thepoverty of the royal exchequer. This hasemboldened them to rise, for they believe that,whatever the disposition, there is no strength tochastise them. They see a proof of the correctnessof their reasoning in the absence of new levies,and in the heavy arrearages due to the old troops."He protested that he desired, at least, to be equalto the enemy, without asking, as others had usuallydone, for double the amount of the hostile force.He gave a glance at the foreign complications ofthe Netherlands, telling Philip that the estates wereintriguing both with France and England. TheEnglish envoy had expressed much uneasiness atthe possible departure of the Spanish troops fromthe Netherlands by sea, coupling it with a probableattempt to liberate the Queen of Scots. Don John,who had come to the provinces for no otherpurpose, and whose soul had been full of thatromantic scheme, of course stoutly denied andridiculed the idea. "Such notions," he had said tothe envoy, "were subjects for laughter. If the troopswere removed from the country, it was tostrengthen his Majesty's force in the Levant." Mr.Rogers, much comforted, had expressed the warmfriendship which Elizabeth entertained both for hisMajesty and his Majesty's representative;protestations which could hardly seem verysincere, after the series of attempts at the Queen'slife, undertaken so recently by his Majesty and hisMajesty's former representative. Nevertheless,Don John had responded with great cordiality, hadbegged for Elizabeth's portrait, and had expressed
the intention, if affairs went as he hoped, to goprivately to England for the purpose of kissing herroyal hand. Don John further informed the King,upon the envoy's authority, that Elizabeth hadrefused assistance to the estates, saying, if shestirred it would be to render aid to Philip, especiallyif France should meddle in the matter. As toFrance, the Governor advised Philip to hold outhopes to Alencon of espousing the Infanta, but byno means ever to fulfil such a promise, as theDuke, "besides being the shield of heretics, wasunscrupulously addicted to infamous vices."A month later, Escovedo described the downfall ofDon John's hopes and his own in dismal language.—"You are aware," he wrote to Perez, "that athrone—a chair with a canopy—is our intention andour appetite, and all the rest is good for nothing.Having failed in our scheme, we are desperate andlike madmen. All is now weariness and death."Having expressed himself in such despondingaccents, he continued, a few days afterwards, inthe same lugubrious vein, "I am ready to hangmyself," said he, "and I would have done it already,if it were not for keeping myself as executioner forthose who have done us so much harm. Ah, SenorAntonio Perez!" he added, "what terrible pertinacityhave those devils shown in making us give up ourplot. It seems as though Hell were opened and hadsent forth heaps of demons to oppose ourschemes." After these vigorous ejaculations heproceeded to inform his friend that the Englishenvoy and the estates, governed by the Prince ofOrange, in whose power were the much-coveted