The Life of the Moft Illuftrious Prince, William Duke of Newcaftle
THE FIRST BOOK
SINCE my chief intent in this present Work, is to describe the Life and Actions of My Noble Lord and Husband, William, Duke of New. castle, I shall do it with as much Brevity, Perspicuity and Truth, as is required of an Impartial Historian. The History of his Pedigree I shall refer to the Heralds, and partly give you an account thereof at the latter end of this work; onely thus much I shall now mention, as will be requisite for the better understanding of the following discourse.
His Grandfather by his Fathers side was Sir William Cavendish, Privy Counsellour and Treasurer of the Chamber to King Henry the Eighth, Edward the Sixth, and Queen Mary. His Grandfather by his Mother was Cuthbert Lord Ogle, an ancient Baron. His Father Sir Charles Cavendish was the youngest son to Sir William, and had no other Children but three Sons, whereof My Lord was the Second; but his elder Brother dying in his Infancy, left both his Title and Birth right to My Lord, so that My Lord had then but one onely Brother left, whose name was Charles after his Father, whereas My Lord had the name of his Grandfather.
These two Brothers were partly bred with
Gilbert Ear1 of .Shrewsbury their Uncle in Law, and their Aunt Mary, Countess of Shrewsbury, Gilbert’s Wife, and Sister to their Father, for there interceded an intire and constant Friendship between the said Gilbert, Earl of Shrewsbury, and My Lord’s Father, Sir Charles Cavendish, caused not onely by the marriage of My Lord’s Aunt, his Fathers Sister, to the aforesaid Gilbert, E of Shrewsbury, and by the marriage of ‘t Earl of Shrews bury, Gilbert’s Father, with My Lord’s Grandmother, by his Fathers side; but Sir Charles Cavendish, My Lord’s Father, and Gilbert, Earl of Shrewsbury, being brought up and bred together in one Family, and grown up as parts of one body, after they came to be beyond Children, and travelled together into foreign Countries, to b* the Fashions, Laws, and Customs of other Nations, contracted such an intire Friendship which lasted to their death: neither did they out-live each other long, for My Lord’s Father, Sir Charles Cavendish, lived but one year after Gilbert Earl of Shrewsbury.
But both My Lords Parents, and his Aunt and Uncle in Law, shewed always a great and fond love to My Lord, endeavouring, when He was but a Child, to please him with what he most delighted in. When He was grown to the Age of fifteen or sixteen, he was made Knight of the Bath, an ancient and honour- able Order, at the time when Henry, King James, of blessed Memory, His eldest Son was created Prince of Wales: and soon after he went to travel with Sir Henry Wotton, who
was sent as Ambassador Extraordinary to the then Duke of Savoy; which Duke made very much of My Lord, and when he would be free in Feasting, placed Him next to him self. Before My Lord did return with the Ambassador into England, the said Duke profer’d My Lord, that if he would stay with him, he would not onely confer upon him the best Titles of Honour he could, but also give him an honourable Command in War, all though My Lord was but young, for the Duke had then some designs of War. But the Ambassador, who had taken the care of My Lord, would not leave Him behind without his Parents consent.
At last, when My Lord took his leave of the Duke, the Duke being a very generous person, presented Him with a Spanish Horse, a Saddle very richly embroidered, and with a rich Jewel of Diamonds.
Some time after My Lord’s return into England, Gilbert Earl of Shrewsbury died, and left My Lord, though he was then but young, and about Twenty two years of age, his Executor; a year after, his Father Sir Charles Cavendish, died also. His Mother, being then a Widow, was desirous that My Lord should marry: in obedience to whose Commands, he chose a Wife both to his own good liking, and his Mothers approving; who was Daughter and Heir to William Basset of Blore Esq.; a very honourable and ancient Family in Staffordshire, by whom was added a great part to His Estate, as hereafter shall be mentioned. After My Lord was married, he lived, for the most
part, in the Country, and pleased Himself and his neighbours with Hospitality, and such delights as the Country afforded; onely now and then he would go up to London for some short time to wait on the King.
About this time King James, of blessed memory, having a purpose to confer some Honour upon My Lord, made him Viscount Mansfield, and Baron of Bolsover; and after the decease of King James, King Charles the First, of blessed Memory, constituted him Lord Warden of the Forrest of Sherewood, and Lieutenant of Nottingham-shire, and restored his Mother Catharine, the second Daughter of Cuthbert Lord Ogle, to her Fathers Dignity, after the death of her onely Sister Jane Countess of Shrewsbury, publickly declaring, that it was her Right; which Title after the death of his Mother, descended also upon My Lord, and his Heirs General, together with a large Inheritance of 3,000 1. a year, in Northumberland.
About the same time, after the decease of William, late Earl of Devonshire, his Noble Cousin German, My Lord was by his said Majesty made Lord Lieutenant of Derby shire; which trust and honour, after he had enjoyed for several years, and managed it, like as all other offices put to his Trust, with all possible care, faithfulness and dexterity, during the time of the said Earls Son, William, the now Earl of Devonshire, his Minority, as soon as this same Earl was come to age, and by Law made capable of that trust, he willingly and freely resign’d it into his hands, he having hitherto kept it onely
for him, that he and no body else might succeed his Father in that dignity.
In these, and all other both publick and private imployments, My Lord hath ever been careful to keep up the Kings Rights to the uttermost of his power, to strengthen those mentioned Counties with Ammunition, and to administer Justice to every one; for he refused no man’s Petition, but sent all that came to him, either for relief or justice, away from him fully satisfied.
Not long after his being made Lieutenant of Nottingham-shire, there was found so great a defect of Armes and Ammunition in that County, that the Lords of the Council being advertised thereof, as the manner then was, His Majesty commanded a levy to be made upon the whole County for the supply thereof; whereupon the sum of 500 l. or thereabout, was accordingly levied for that purpose, and three Persons of Quality, then Deputy Lieutenants, were desired by My Lord to receive the money, and see it disposed; which being done accordingly, and a certain account rendered to My Lord, he voluntarily ordered the then Clerk of the Peace of that County, That the same account should be recorded amongst the Sessions Roles, and be published in open Sessions, to the end that the Country might take notice how their monies were disposed of, for which act of Justice My Lord was highly commended.
Within some few years after, King Charles the First, of blessed Memory, His Gracious Soveraign, in regard of His true arid faithful service to his King and Country, was pleased
to honour him with the Title of Earl of New castle, and Baron of Bothal and Heple; which Title he graced so much by His Noble Actions and Deportments, that some seven years after, which was in the Year 1638, His Majesty called him up to Court, and thought Him the fittest Person whom He might in- trust with the Government of His Son Charles, then Prince of Wales, now our most Gracious King, and made him withal a Member of the Lords of His Majesties most honourable Privy Council; which, as it was a great Honour and Trust, so He spared no care and industry to discharge His Duty accordingly; and to that end, left all the care of governing his own Family and Estate, with all Fidelity attending His Master not without considerable Charges, and vast Expences of his own.
In this present Employment He continued for the space of three Years, during which time there happened an Insurrection and Rebellion of His Majesties discontented Subjects in Scotland, which forced His Majesty to raise an Army, to reduce them to their Obedience, and His Treasury being at that time exhausted he was necessitated to desire some supply and assistance of the Noblest and Richest of his Loyal Subjects; amongst the rest, My Lord lent His Majesty 1000 l. and raised Himself a Voluntier Troop of Horse, which consisted of 120 Knights and Gentlemen of Quality, who marched to Berwick by His Majesties Command, where it pleased His Majesty to set this mark of Honour upon that Troop, that
it should be Independent, and not commanded by any General Officer, but onely by his Majesty Himself; The reason thereof was upon this following occasion.
His Majesties whole body of Horse, being commanded to march into Scotland against the Rebels, a place was appointed for their Rendezvous; Immediately upon their meeting, My Lord sent a Gentleman of Quality of his Troop to His Majesties then General of the Horse, to know where his Troop should march; who returned this answer, That it was to march next after the Troops of the General Officers of the Field. My Lord conceiving that his Troop ought to march in the Van, and not in the Rear, sent the same Messenger back again to the General, to inform him, That he had the honour to march with the Princes Colours, and there fore he thought it not fit to march under any of the Officers of the Field; yet nevertheless the General ordered that Troop as he had formerly directed. Whereupon, My Lord thinking it unfit at that time to dispute the business, immediately commanded his Cornet to take off the Princes Colours from his staff, and so marched in the place appointed, choosing rather to march without his Colours flying, then to lessen his Masters dignity by the command of any subject.
Immediately after the return from that expedition to his Majesties Leaguer, the General made a complaint thereof to his Majesty; who being truly informed of the business, commended my Lords discretion for it, and from that time ordered
that Troop to be commanded by none but himself. Thus they remain’d upon duty, without receiving any payment or allowance from His Majesty, until His Majesty had reduced his Rebellious Subjects, and then My Lord returned with honour to his Charge, viz. The Government of the Prince.
At last when the whole Army was disbanded, then, and not before, my Lord thought it a fit Time to exact an account from the said General for the affront he pass’d upon him, and sent him a Challenge; the place and hour being appointed by both their Consents, where and when to meet, My Lord appear’d there with his Second, but found not his Opposite : After some while his Opposite’s Second came all alone, by whom my Lord perceiv’d that their De sign had been discover’d to the King by some of his Opposite’s Friends, who presently caused them both to be confined until he had made their Peace.
My Lord having hitherto attended the Prince, his Master, with all faithfulness and duty befitting so great an Employment, for the space of three years, in the beginning of that Rebellious and unhappy Parliament, which was the cause of all the ruines and misfortunes that afterwards befell this Kingdom, was privately advertised, that the Parliaments ,Design was to take the Government of the Prince from Him, which he apprehending as a disgrace to Himself, wisely prevented, and obtained the Consent of His late Majesty, with His Favour, to deliver up the Charge of being Governor
to the Prince, and retire into the Countrey; which he did in the beginning of the Year 1641, and setled himself, with his Lady, Children and Family, to his great satisfaction, with an intent to have continued there, and rested under his own Vine, and managed his own Estate; but he had not enjoyed himself long, but an Express came to him from His Majesty, who was then unjustly and unmannerly treated by the said Parliament, to repair with all possible speed and privacy to Kingston upon Hull, where the greatest part of His Majesties Ammunition and Arms then remained in that Magazine, it being the most considerable place for strength in the Northern parts of the Kingdom.
Immediately upon the receipt of these His Majesties Orders and Commands, my Lord prepared for their execution, and about Twelve of the Clock at night, hastned from his own house when his Famlie were all at their rest, save two or three Servants which he appointed to attend him. The next day early in the morning he arrived at Hull, in the quality of a private Gentleman, which place was distant from his house forty miles and none of his Family that were at home, knew what was become of him, till he sent an Express to his Lady to inform her where he was.
Thus being admitted into the Town, he fell upon his intended Design, and brought it to so hopeful an issue for His Majesties Service, that he wanted nothing but His Majesties further Commission and Pleasure to have secured both the Town and Magazine
for His Majesties use: and to that end by a speedy Express gave His Majesty, who was then at Windsor, an account of all his Transactions therein, together with his Opinion of them, hoping His Majesty would have been pleased either to come thither in Person, which He might have done with much security, or at least have sent him a Commission and Orders how he should do His Majesty further Service.
But instead thereof he received Orders from His Majesty to observe such Directions as he should receive from the Parliament then sitting: Whereupon he was summoned personally to appear at the House of Lords, and a Committee chosen to examine the Grounds and Reasons of his undertaking that Design; but my Lord shewed them his Commission, and that it was done in obedience to His Majesties Commands, and so was cleared of that Action.
Not long after, my Lord obtained the freedom from His Majesty to retire again to his Countrey Life, which he did with much alacrity: He had not remained many months there, but His Majesty was forced by the fury of the said Parliament, to repair in Person to York, and to send the Queen be yond the seas for her safety.
No sooner was His Majesty arrived at York but he sent his Commands to my Lord to come thither to him; which, according to his wonted custom and loyalty, he readily obeyed, and after a few days spent there in Consultation, His Majesty was pleased to Command him to Newcastle upon Tyne, to
take upon him the Government of that Town, and the four Counties next adjoining; that is to say, Northumberland, Cumberland, Westmerland, and the Bishoprick of Durham; which my Lord did accordingly, although he wanted Men, Money and Ammunition, for the performance of that design ; for when he came thither he neither found any Military provision considerable for the under taking that work, nor generally any great encouragement from the people in those parts, more then what his own interest created in them : Nevertheless, he thought it his duty rather to hazard all, then to neglect the Commands of His Soveraign; and resolved to shew his Fidelity, by nobly setting all at stake, as he did, though he well knew how to have secured himself, as too many others did, either by Neutrality or adhering to the Rebellious Party; but his Honour and Loyalty was too great to be stained with such foul adherencies.
As soon as my Lord came to Newcastle, in the first place he sent for all his Tenants and Friends in those parts, and presently raised a Troop of Horse consisting of 120, and a Regiment of Foot, and put them under Command, and upon duty and exercise in the Town of Newcastle; and with this small beginning took the Government of that place upon him ; where with the assistance of the Towns-men, particularly the Mayor, (whom by the power of his Forces, he continued Mayor for the year following, he being a person of much trust and fidelity, as he approved himself) and the rest of his
Brethren, within few days he fortified the Town, and raised men daily, and put a Garrison of Soldiers into Tinmouth-Castle standing upon the River Tyne, betwixt New castle and the Sea, to secure that Port, and armed the Soldiers as well as he could: And thus he stood upon his Guard, and continued them upon Duty; playing his weak Game with much Prudence, and giving the Town and Country very great satisfaction by his noble and honourable Deportment.
In the mean time, there happened a great mutiny of the Trainband Souldiers of the Bishoprick at Durham, so that my Lord was forced to remove thither in Person, attended with some forces to appease them; where at his arrival (I mention it by the way, and as a merry passage) a jovial Fellow used this expression, That he liked my Lord very well, but not his Company (meaning his Soldiers).
After my Lord had reduced them to their obedience and duty, he took great care of the Church Government in the said Bishoprick (as he did no less in all other places committed to his Care and Protection, well knowing that Schism and Faction in Religion is the Mother of all or most Rebellions, Wars and Disturbances in a State or Government) and constituted that Learned and Eminent Divine the then Dean of Peterborough, now Lord-Bishop of Durham, to view all Sermons that were to be Preached, and suffer nothing in them that in the least reflected against His Majesties Person and Government, but to put forth and add whatsoever he thought convenient, and punish those that should
trespass against it. In which that worthy Person used so much care and industry, that never the Church could be more happily govern’d then it was at that present.
Some short time after, my Lord received from Her Majesty the Queen, out of Holland a small supply of Money, viz, a little barrel of Ducatoons, which amounted to about 500 l. Sterling; which my Lord distributed amongst the Officers of his new raised Army, to encourage them the better in their service; as also some Armes, the most part whereof were consigned to his late Majesty; and those that were ordered to be conveyed to his Majesty, were sent accordingly, con ducted by that onely Troop of Horse, which my Lord had newly raised, with orders to return again to him ; but it seems His Majesty liked the Troop so well, that he was pleased to command their stay to recruit his own Army.
About the same time the King of Denmark was likewise pleased to send His Majesty a Ship, which arrived at Newcastle, laden with some Ammunition, Armes, Regiment Pieces, and Danish Clubs; which my Lord kept for the furnishing of some Forces which he in tended to raise for Hi Majesties service for he perceiving the fIames increase more and more in both the Houses of Parliament then sitting at Westminster, against his Majesties Person and Government; upon Consultation with his Friends and Allies, and the interest he had in those Northern parts, took a resolution to raise an Army for His Majesties service, and by an express ac
quainted His Majesty with his design; who was so well pleased with it, that he sent him Commissions for that purpose, to constitute him General of all the Forces raised and to be raised in all the parts of the Kingdom, Trent-North, and moreover in the several Counties of Lincoln, Nottingham, Derby, Lancashire, Cheshire, Leicester, Rutland, Cambridg, Huntington, Norfolk, Suffolk, and Essex, and Commander in Chief for the same; as also to impower and authorize him to confer the honour of Knighthood upon such Persons as he should conceive deserved it, and to coin Money and Print whensoever he saw occasion for it. Which as it was not onely a great Honour, but a great Trust and Power; so he used it with much discretion and wisdom, onely in such occurrencies, where he found it tending to the advancement of His Majesties Service, and conferr’d the honour of Knighthood sparingly, and but on such persons whose Valiant and Loyal Actions did justly deserve it, so that he Knighted in all to the number of Twelve.
Within a short time, my Lord formed an Army of 8000 Foot, Horse and Dragoons, and put them into a condition to march in the beginning of November, 1642. No sooner was this effected, but the Insurrection grew high in York-shire, in so much, that most of His Majesties good subjects of that County, as well the Nobility as Gentry, were forced for the preservation of their persons, to retire to the City of York, a walled Town, but of no great strength; and hearing that my Lord
had not onely kept those Counties in the Northen parts generally faithful to his Majesty, but raised an Army for His Majesties Interest, and the protection of his good subjects; thought it convenient to employ and authorise some persons of Quality to attend upon my Lord, and treat with him on their behalf, that he would be pleased to give them the assistance of his Army, which my Lord granted them upon such Terms as did highly advance His Majesties Service, which was my Lords chief and onely aim.
Thus my Lord being with his Army invited into York-shire, He prepared for it with all the speed that the nature of that business could possibly permit; and after he had fortified the Town of Newcastle, Tynmouth castle, Hartlepool (a Haven Town) and some other necessary Garisons in those parts, and Mann’d, Victuall’d and order’d their constant supply, He thought it fit in the first place, before he did march, to manifest to the World by a Declaration in Print, the reasons and grounds of his undertaking that design; which were in General, for the preservation of His Majesties Person and Govern ment, and the defence of the Orthodox Church of England; where He also satisfied those that murmur’d for my Lords receiving into his Army such as were of the Catholick Religion, and then he presently marched with his Army into York-shire to their assist ance, and within the time agreed upon, came to York, notwithstanding the Enemies Forces gave him all the interruption they possibly could, at several passes ; whereof
the chief was at Fierce-bridg, at the entering into York-shire, where 1500 of the Enemies Forces, Commanded in chief by Col. Hotham, were ready to interrupt my Lord’s Forces, sent thither to secure that passe, consisting of a Regiment of Dragoons, commanded by Colonel Thomas Howard, and a Regiment of Foot, Commanded by Sir William Lambton, which they performed with so much Courage, that they routed the Enemy, and put them to flight, although the said Col. Howard in that Charge lost his life by an unfortunate shot.
The Enemy thus missing of their design, fled until they met with a conjunction of their whole Forces at Tadcaster, some eight miles distant from York, and my Lord went on without any other considerable Interruption. Being come to York, he drew up his whole Army before the Town, both Horse and Foot, where the Commander in Chief, the then Earl of Cumberland, together with the Gentry of the Country, came to wait on my Lord, and the then Governor of York, Sir Thomas Glemham, presented him with the Keys of the City.
Thus my Lord marched into the Town with great joy, and to the general satisfaction both of the Nobility and Gentry, and most of the Citizens; and immediately without any delay, in the later end of December 1642, fell upon Consultations how he might best proceed to serve his King and Country; and particularly, how his Army should be maintained and paid, (as he did also afterwards in every Country wheresoever he marched)
well knowing, that no Army can be governed without being constantly and regularly sup ported by provision and pay. Whereupon it was agreed, That the Nobility and Gentry of the several Counties, should select a certain number of themselves to raise money by a regular Tax, for the making provisions for the support and maintenance of the Army, rather than to leave them to free-quarter, and to carve for themselves; and if any of the Soldiers were exorbitant and disorderly, and that it did appear so to those that were autlhorised to examine their deportment, that presently order should be given to repair those injuries out of the moneys levied for the Soldiery; by which means the Country was preserved from many inconveniences, which otherwise would doubtless have followed.
And though the season of the year might well have invited my Lord to take up his Winter-quarters it being about Christmas; yet after he had put a good Garison into the City of York, and fortified it, upon intelligence that the Enemy was still at Tadcaster, and had fortified that place, he resolved to march thither. The greatest part of the Town stands on the West side of a River not fordable in any place near thereabout, nor allowing any passage into the Town from York, but over a Stone-bridge, which the Enemy had made impassable by breaking down part of the Bridg, and planting their Ordnance upon it, and by raising a very large
and strong Fort upon the top of a Hill, leading Eastward from that Bridg towards York,
upon design of commanding the Bridg and all other places fit to draw up an Army in, or to plant Cannon against them.
But notwithstanding all these Discouragements, my Lord after he had refresh’d his Army at York, and recruited his provisions, ordered a march before the said Town in this manner: That the greatest part of his Horse and Dragoons should in the night march to a Pass at Weatherby, five miles distant from Tadcasler, towards North-west, from thence under the Command of his then Lieutenant General of the Army, to appear on the West side of Tadcaster early the next morning, by which time my Lord with the rest of his Army resolved to appear at the East-side of the said Town; which intention was well design’d, but ill executed; for though my Lord with that part of the Army which he commanded in person, that is to say, his Foot and Cannon, attended by some Troops of Horse, did march that night, and early in the morning appear’d before the Town on the East side thereof, and there drew up his Army, planted his Cannon, and closely and orderly besieged that side of the Town, and from ten in the morning till four a Clock in the afternoon, battered the Enemies Forts and Works, as being in continual expectation of the appearance of the Troops on the other side, according to his order; yet (whether it was out of Neglect or Treachery that my Lords Orders were not obeyed) that days Work was rendered ineffectual as to the whole Design.