Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation, by Richard Hakluyt

The letters of Conradas de Iungingen, Master generall of Prussia, written vnto Richard the second, king of England, in the yeere 1398, for the renouncing of a league and composition concluded betweene England and Prussia, in regard of manifold iniuries, offered vnto the Prussians.

Our humble commendations, with our earnest prayers vnto God for your Maiestie, premised. Most renowned prince and mighty lord, it is not (we hope) out of your Maiesties remembrance, how our famous predecessour going immediately before vs sent certaine letters of his vnto your highnesse, effectually contayning sundry complaints of grieuances, iniuries and losses, wherewith the marchants of his lande and Order, being woont in times past to visite your kingdome with their goods and marchandises, haue bene contrary to their liberties and priuiledges annoyed with manifold iniuries and wrongs. Especially sithens they haue beene molested in your realme, being contrary to the friendly composition made and celebrated by the hono: personages, master Nicholas Stocket, Thomas Graa and Walter Sibil, in the yeare 1388, with the assistance of their coarbiters on our part and contrary to God and all iustice, oppressed with manifold damages, losses, and grieuances: as in certaine articles exhibited vnto our predecessors aforesayd it doeth more manifestly appeare. In consideration whereof being vehemently moued by the damnified parties, he humbly besought your highnesse by his messengers and letters, for complement and execution of iustice. About the which affayres your Maiestie returned your letters of answere vnto our sayd predecessor, signifying that the sayd businesse of articles concerned al the communalty of your realme, and that your highnesse purposed, after consultation had in your parliament, to send a more deliberate, answere concerning the premisses, vnto our predecessour aforesayd. Howbeit he being by death translated out of this present world, and our selues by the prouidence of God succeeding in his roome, and also long time expecting an effectuall answere from your highnesse, are not yet informed as we looked for: albeit the complaints of iniuries and losses offered vnto our subiects doe continually increase. But from hencefoorth, to prouide a remedie and a caueat for the time to come, the sayd complaynt doeth vpon great reasons mooue and inuite me. Sithens therefore in regard of the sayd composition, neither you nor your subiects may be iudged in the empire: and sithens plaine reason requireth that the one be not inriched by the others losse: as vndoubtedly our subiects should sustaine great damage by the composition aforesayd, by vertue whereof your subiects doe enioy all commodities in our lande, and contrariwise our subiects in your realme haue suffered, and as yet sundrie wayes do suffer manifold discommodities, losses and iniuries. Wherefore (most soueraigne prince and mighty lord) being reasonably mooued vpon the causes aforesayd, we doe, by the aduise of our counsellors, reuoke and repeale the sayd composition concluded as is aboue written, together with the effect thereof, purely and simply renouncing the same by these presents: refusing hereafter to haue either our selues or our subiects in any respect to stand bound by the vertue of the sayd composition: but from henceforth, and for the times heretofore also, bee it altogether voide and of none effect.

Prouided notwithstanding, that from the time of the notice of this denunciation giuen vnto the hono: Maior of your citie of London, for the space of a yeare next ensuing, it shall be lawfull for all marchants of your kingdome whatsoeuer, with their goods and marchandises to returne home, according to the forme in the foresayd composition expressed: conditionaly that our subiects may euen so in all respects be permitted to depart, with the safety of their goods and liues out of your dominions: this present renuntiation, reuocation, and retractation of the order and composition aforesayd, notwithstanding. Howbeit in any other affayres whatsoeuer, deuoutly to submit our selues vnto your highnesse pleasure and command, both our selues, and our whole order are right willing and desirous: and also to benefite and promote your subiects we wil indeuour to the vtmost of our ability, Giuen in our castle of Marienburgh in the yeare of our Lord 1398, and vpon the 22. day of February.

Frater Conradus de Iungingen, master generall of the Order of the Dutch knights of S. Maries hospital at Ierusalem.

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Last updated Monday, March 10, 2014 at 22:44