3 December 2003
HOWARD of EFFINGHAM, Charles, 2nd Baron, Lord High Admiral, 1st Earl of Nottingham (1536-1624). Autograph letter signed to Sir Martin Frobisher, Whitehall 'late in the night', 4 February 1588, 2/3 page, folio, integral address leaf endorsed by Sir Francis Walsingham ('Post of dover see this letter is carryed w[i]th all speed. Fra. Walsingham') and others, and inscribed 'haste' 7 times in Howard's hand, blind-stamped privy council seal, (address leaf soiled, small scorch marks in blank area), and another item.
An extremely urgent and confidential letter to Frobisher as 'Admyrall of her Ma[jesty]s Fleet on the Narrowe Seas'. He is ordered to prevent by devious means the departure of the French ambassador across the English Channel. 'I wold have you to use the beste pollicies you cann for to staie his passage by the want of victualles or under cullor of leake until you heare further from me'.
The ambassador (Claude de l'Aubespine) agreed on 6 February to wait for several days at Dover for 'Mr [Edward] Wotton' who was to travel with him and convey condolences to France on the death of Catherine de Medici. Wotton was also given letters from Elizabeth to take to Henry III at Blois, urging him to resist the ambitions of the Duke of Guise.
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