THE FIFTH CHAP. Treatinge of the election and office of a Captaine of a Companie of Infanterie.
THE electione of Captaines of Infanterie in Spainie is made be the Counsell of State, and warr, vvhen theyre is any leavie or raisinge of men, and vvhen theese pla∣ces are voide eyther in campe or garison, other Captai∣nes are elected in theyre place be the Captaine gene∣ralles or Visroyes in theyre govermentes. The electiones made by su∣che personadges shoulde by all lickhood seeme to be goode and sure; notwithstanding it faulethe oute offten times that boath Generales and Viseroyes, and alsoe counseleres have missed in the consideration therof, bestowenge those honorable chardges uppon theyr owne fol∣loweres, frendes▪ or uppon, greate courtieres, and favorites; vvherby often times many scandeles and domadges do resulte to the prince, and to the action. For by the meanes, of thies inconciderate electio∣nes, many valiante, brave, and skilfull Souldieres do remaine wi∣thoute chardge, litle concideringe uppon those of longe seruice, pru∣dente and brave cariadge, yea and who have shed theyre bloode with greate valeor, sheowinge them selves in many brave incounteres a gainste the enemy. O cruell unhappie, and sinister electiones of smale expectaciones, when the verteouse, prudente, and valerouse Souldier is not thoughte uppon▪ trough vvhose meanes many scandeles doe a rise, and many brave o cationes are loste, vvithe greate dishonor and discomoditie to the prince. And the prudente and brave Souldier re∣maineth almoste oute of all hope, and almoste os no desire to atemp∣pte a ny hanorable enterprice, seeinge that they are neyther honored nor rewarded, and seeinge that Bisones and men of litle skill are prefe∣red before them.
To prevente many sinister electiones vvhich often times happene∣the, and are more necessarie to be remedied. I woulde wish that in all electiones of those vvho shoulde pretende to be prefered by meanes of favor, or afection as many are, it vvere necessarie they shoulde be comanded to serve; as oftentimes i have seene be prudente and brave Page 21 Comaunderes, yea and theyre sones and neereste frendes for exam∣ple to otheres, and for the ob servation of true discipline. To preven∣te thies sinister electiones, vvherof resulteth greate shame and loshe both to the prince and contrie. The Kinge of Sprine •acketh a goo∣de cource vvhen o cation is presented to rayse a ny neowe levies, he sendes to his Viseroyes and Generalles of severall States and Provin∣ces, that they shoulde choyse and sende relation of the ancienteste Alferises and beste a proved Souldieres in the vvarres, both in vertue, valeor, and suficiencie, that suche persones be elected for Captaines, and that alsoe a relation shoulde by sente of the anciēteste reformed Sardgentes to be elected for Alferises, and of Corporalles, Sardgen∣tes, and of brave Souidieres Corporalles. The Visroyes and General∣les of righte shoulde looke vvell to see thies orderes yustly a complis∣hed, concideringe the emportance therof to his Majesties service, soe shall the brave Souldier of longe service prudente and resolute deter∣minationes be prefered, and advaunsed; and otheres imitate theyre a prooved vertue and goode a plicationes, that there by eache one may with diligence, care, practi•e, and learne this noble arte of vvarr; seeinge that eache one is prefered, by theyr vertue desertes and goode partes, but o ther vvise vvhen thies electiones are made by favor and affection to bisones of litle sufficiencie causeth greate dispe•ationes, and unwillinge myndes to attempte honorable enterprises, and bra∣ve incounteres, seeinge be experience that they are neyther honored nor prefered for the same. Whiche causeth Military discipline dayly to fall into greate decay; wherof resulteth many disgraces and the losh of many brave ocationes, ruine of the comon wealth, and of the hap∣pie success of Military discipline. He which of righte shoulde be cho∣sen for this office shoulde by a goode Cristian, prudente, and of vertu∣se cariadge, to live with greate temperance and measure in his affaires, and to by perfecte in Military discipline, that therby he may with the greater auctoritie comaunde, and be the more respected and feared. Hardelie can a ny coddy reduce unto perfectiō this honorable chard∣ge, exepte he be learned and perfecte in thesame.
It emporteth much for the prudente govermente, brave condu∣ction and executions of his Majesties service, as alsoe for ministringe justice, and redressinge many disorderes, that he knowe and take a spe∣ciall care in the electinge of his Officeres: that therebe his prudence and valeor may by the better understoode; electinge them as neere equall to him selfe as may be possible, rather then sellinge the same Page 20〈1 page duplicate〉Page 21〈1 page duplicate〉Page 22 after choysinge his Officeres as a foresaied, before he marches vvithe the same, he is firste to cause, the culores, to be bleste, and afterwar∣des deliver the same to the Alferis, giving him to understande the ho∣nor recomended to his chardge, and that he is allwayes to take a spe∣ciall care of the same, and to die in defence therof as before decla∣red. Then he is to devide them into squadrones, electinge and namin∣ge one squadron for him selfe of those of beste qualities and conditio∣nes, for beinge soe necessary and of emportance. For of them moste comonly he is to choise his Officeres, and consulte with them. In o ca∣tiones of fighte and enconteres with the enemy moste comonlie they are nexte his owne person, respectinge and honoringe them as his owne person, and sometimes they are employed for cavose or Co∣maunderes of some brave exploytes. It emporteth alsoe that in the o ther squadrones ther by some particular Souildieres and a ventaja∣dos. He is to procure that all by goode Cristianes, and of a goode and verteuse life, to heere mass and often confes for beinge the true fun∣dasion of happiness; he is to a comodate all disorderes, quarelles, and disputes, that shall happen amongste them, and reprehende those of bad exāples, and dishoneste behavior, and if by faire meanes they doe not a minde to drive them a vvay. For factioneres and infamouse fel∣lowes are not to be permitted to a Company the Kinges culores, nor to equal them selves vvith the observeres of the noble arte of vvarr. In o cationes of marchinge with his Company let him procure not to be troubled with much bagadge, and specially to use suche moderation in not permitenge that his Souldieres be overloaden with lugadge, or traishes (as some times happened) butt rather to goe as lighte as may by possible, vvith onelie theyre armor and o ther litle inescusall necessaries, that therby they may vvith the lesser empedimente ma∣nadge theyre armes, and fighte with the more resolution in offering o cation.
In each Company of Infantery it were necessarie theyr shoulde be a feowe horses permited to some Officeres and particular perso∣nes, but not many. Thies horses doe serve for many purposes, and spe∣cially to recnoledge passadges, and places vvhere the enemy may be suspected to be in ambuscado; which for suche o cationes are verie re∣quisit, as alsoe to sende vvarninge of sodaine o cationes of importan∣ce. He is not to a tempte o cationes of litle a peerāee, faringe it shoul∣de fall oute unhappilie, excepte he be constrayned therunto of ne∣cessitie, for such as do not prevente and forecaste theyre successes in Page 23 time, are wonte when the o cation offereth to by muche troubled, yea and some times oute of theyre vvittes, he is to by carefull in a com∣plishinge and observinge the orderes givē him by the Officers mayo∣res, vvhen manifeste o cation, doth not offer that the a complishin∣ge of suche orderes shoulde be hurtefull.
It is verie necessarie he knoweth eache souldier of his Company by his name, and in o cationes of marchinge that he procure and see that they still observe theyre order and rankes, and not to permit them to stragle hire and there for beinge verie necessarie for many o cationes, because that greate scādeles doe arise trough the over much liberty of stragleres in spoyling gardines, orchardes, and the houses of the inhabitāce or contrye where they march; wherof resulte grea∣te discorde and discontentmente to the inhabitantes for the loshes they receive of some unrulie campaniones. In the redresinge vvherof the Captaine is to be verie carefull, and not to permit them to by ri∣gerouse with theyre hoste for theyre meales, butt rather contente them vvhith vvhate he can give; and see those that do not observe thies orderes severelie punished. For beinge the obligation of a goo∣de Cristian, and vertuese Souldier.
If o ther wise he doe, hardly can he escape scandales and bad repu∣tasion, and besides if it come to the Generall is eares. He and his Of∣ficeres are in danger of reprehension, yea and often times see theyre Souldiers hanged before theyre faces, for theyre spoyles don uppon the poore innocente people. Wherfore theyre have beene many pu∣nishmentes executed for such and semblable disorderes.
Julius Caesar passinge from Cicilia to Africa againste Cipio and Kinge Juda de Numidia havinge lefte in that Ilande the minthe and tenth le∣gion, and afterwardes when he sente for them, beinge informed of the Captaines and o ther Officeres in permitinge theyre Souldieres to spoyle the contry vvithoute ministringe any goode discipline, co∣manded that they shoulde by broughte in presence of the vvhole ar∣my reprehended theyre bad goverment, presently comaunded them to by banished oute of the army, and yvithoute any delay to embarck oute of all Africa. The licke punishmentes did Ducke de Alva in the vvarres of Portugal, reforminge soe many Captaines for theyres and theyre Souldiers disorderes: They vvere banished for example to the reste of the Captaines, and Officers of the army; and soe many Soul∣dieres vvere executed to death for robberies and stelth that in theyre reconinge vvas founde, that more Souldiers vvere executed to death Page 24 by justice for theyr disorderes then killed or dead o ther vvise in that vvarr.
Disorderlie shall he governe in vvarr vviche never was practised in the arte; Wherfore it vvere verie necessary that men chosen for this office shoulde wourdily passe trough all the degries before spoken of, or at leaste parte of them, to the ende he may the better knowe howe to governe and comaunde, and particularlie that he be alwais mind∣full to feare God, and to be verteouse and experimented in martiall affaires, in many can thies goode partes be had, and many more, and in suche as they cannot be wholie founde, let theyre choyse be made of those of vvhome the moste are to by founde, because that itt im∣porteth muche the Kinges service, for all observation of military dis∣cipline.
If he be comaunded vvith his Company and o ther troupes ioy∣ned to them as often times do happen to the garde or defence, of a ny place. Let him vvith greate care, vigilance, and valeor animate his Souldieres, and consulthe vvith his Officeres, and beste experimented Souldieres, and beinge resolved let him with all care and speede for∣tifie and intrince him selfe, as many brave and valiante Captaines have don, sheowinge them selves vvith prudence, valeor, and brave conduction, presentinge them selves in all actiones of the firste, with a brave and resolute determination, but let him by verie varie that he a tempte nothinge inconsiderate, and raish as often times happened to ingnorant men of litle experience to theyre owne and Companies confusion. To a voide such enconveniences and hasardes let him be verie carefull to a complish and observe the orderes and instructio∣nes given by the higher Comaunderes. If o cation do nott offer wher∣of greater domadge may insue, or a goode o cation to by loste, in whi∣che Captaines are some times of force to prudently prevente the be∣ste. Let him never deney a ny honorable interprice beinge comaun∣ded thereunto be the Generall or Governor, though he finde it a jor∣ney of greate danger. But he is to presente his reasones if he finde o cation necessarie, and soe fall on vvith a valerouse determination.
He shall vvith a generouse mynde and goode vvourkes procure to vvin the good vvill of his Souldieres, a continge them as his sones, and children and that by suche faire meanes, in not sheowing him sel∣fe over coveteouse, and greedy, but rather liberall; still secoringe his Souldieres to his abilitie in theyre necessities and vvantes, and not to basely wronge them in robbinge or deceivinge them of theyre payes, Page 25 as some Captaines are wonte to doe; with litle honestie or feare of God; makinge a comon practice therof, trough whiche they win bad fame, and toughte and reputed by theyre higher Comaunderes un∣wourdie of the name of a Captaine, and often times are severely pu∣nished for the same, and deprived of theyre Companies vvith a juste sentence.
He is to be verie carefull to visite the centeries and corpes de Gar∣de under his chardge, sheowinge greate diligence, care, and punctua∣litie in his owne persone, that the Officeres and Souldieres doe imita∣te him, and precisely a complish vvith theyre obligationes, a cordin∣ge the orderes given by the highe Superiores, and be him.
Let him be carefull that his Souldieres be not given to vice and to much libertie trough there owne negligence, and bad a plicationes, all fin fallinge into bad customes, for in permittenge thies unruly fa∣ctes vvithoute necessarie redress, he offendeth God and his Kinge, for they beinge under his chardge as his familie, he is to cause everie one of them to confess at leaste once in ayeare, and specially in all times and o cationes of danger of death as befiteth a goode Cristian to doe.
It is verie necessarie to haue a goode furiell a ble in Aritmeticke, as also in readinge and vvritinge, and to be one of truste and vvell ac∣quainted, for the lifte and reconinges of the Company moste comon∣ly is refered to his chardge, as vvell to pass muster of his Company, as in distributing munitiones, armes, and a parell vvhich are given be the Kinge to the Souldieres; of vvhich he is to yealde a compte when it is sought for by the Prince is ministeres, to vvhose chardge the same a pertayneth, to thies furielles or clearkes dothe a pertaine to receive the orderes for the makinge of quarteres, in townes Viladges and campana from the furiell mayor as shall be ordained and a pointed by him, and moste comonly the distributinge and devidinge of the quarteres are refered to the chardge of the Sardgente. It hapēeth so∣me times that the furiell doth marche with his Company a lone, from one place to a nother, may be of reasonable distance, carienge vvith him his patente or order for the same, goinge for the moste parte be∣fore the Companie to cause the quarter to be made att theyre a riven∣ge. In suche o cationes the Captaine is to be verie carefull, that thies persones do not comit greate faultes, as some times happen trough the covetousenes of such persones, resultinge often times troubles to his Captaine, for robbinge and stealinge not onelie in the vvay butt Page 26 alsoe in the Villadge vvhere they doe lodge, spoylinge the same and givinge o cation to the inbitanes to run avvay. Whiche disorderes soe comitted doe often times come to the highe Comaunderes eares, and chardinge all uppon the Captaine is honeor and reputasion, and the factioneres run avvay for feare of punishmente, and sometimes thies furielles or Clearckes in meetinge a goode fellowe doe fall a drinckinge and makinge goode cheere, and his chardge not finised, nor findinge him, nor knowen vvhere to be founde, yea and often times for a pee∣ce of money leaves the Company, trustinge to smale comoditie, and it may by in o cationes of moste necessitie; beinge vveary and vvett to the skin, thinckinge to stopp theyre mouthes vvith envented fables and lyes, for which disorders the Captaine as a father of his Souldie∣res is to see him severely punished, beinge thereunto bounde for the dischardge of his conicience and reputation.
It is verie necessary for the Captaine and Company to have a goo∣de Chapleyn reasonable learned, and specially verteouse, and of goo∣de life and examples; But not a frier excepte it be vvith licence of his Superiores. Aboue all o ther prpfessiones the arte of vvarr is of moste danger, soe the Souldier is to be verie earneste to be devote, and of cleere conscience, for he is more neerer dangeres of death then any o ther sorte of men; and it is necessarie that he allwayes haue a prieste not far of, for the soules health: To whome he may cōfess at all times and o cationes, a cordinge as time and necessitie shall require. In the choisinge and keepinge of thies priestes the Captaines in conscience are bounde to procure that they be verteouse and of goode life, if o therwise, itt were far better not to have any at all.
He is of necessitie to have a barber in his Company, and if it be pos∣sible of goode skill in this arte, for beinge a verie necessarie instrumē∣te in warr; for when a Souldier is hurte the greateste comforte he can have is a goode barber, that shall cure him vvell, and with speede, for if he depende to be cured by another which at all times is not to be had, excepte he sende for him may by a far of; hardlie can he be well cured; and besides he is in danger of deathe. If the wounde or hurte be dangerouse, he is both in danger and trouble: This beinge such a necessarie instrumente in warr and because that Souldieres are men of libertie they fall often times into many disgraces, excepte theyre Officeres have a speciall care to prevente the necessarie remedies. For whiche and for many more dangeres they incurr, it is uerie necessarie they have a goode barber as before spoken. And if his pay be not able Page 27 to intertaine him with instrumentes and o ther necessaries, the Offi∣ceres and Souldieres are to further and asiste him, that he may the better, and with a more willinge minde serve them, and a complish with the more punctualitie his obligationes.
In o cationes of marchinge with his Company, the Captaine, and other Officeres are to by verie earneste that theyre Souldieres doe not dismaunde oute of theyr order, and rankes, (as many unruly fa∣ctioneres doe) litle regardinge theyre Captaines honeor nor theyre owne reputation, as before declared; and at his departinge oute of a∣ny towne or viladge where he shall lodge (though it were but for one nighte.) He is to see all disorderes comitted redressed, not opresinge nor a beedinge injuries don to the poore innocente inhabitantes, but rather stay after the Companie till they be cleere oute of the towne or Villadge, givinge order to the Alferis to march to the a pointed place or distance where he is a pointed to mak alto or stande, and alsoe gi∣vinge order to the Sardgente to chardge the bagadge with speede; ha∣vinge soe don he him selfe is to visite over the quarter and see if there bee any complaintes, and to see them remedied before the Company doe departe. Havinge finised well with his obligation, and desire he∣rein.
It is necessarie he carie withe him in writinge from the Comaunde∣res of that towne or Villadge that they are satisfied with the goode govermente ministred bee the Captaine in not permitinge injuries nor disorderes withoute redress and satisfaction: Havinge acomplis∣hed with thies he is to repaire to his Company, callinge the Corpo∣ralles that he may knowe, and be well a sured if any boddy wantes or no, and then he gives order that the bagadge doe marche in theyre due place, as time and o cation shall require, and the same still acom∣panied with a garde.
If the countrie be peaceable and of no feare of the enemy, he may vvell comaunde the bagadge to marche in the vangarde, and if o ther¦wise let them march in the rergarde or battel, acordinge as he shall suspecte of feare both in the vangarde and reregarde, commandinge the Alferis to leade the Companie, and the Captaine to stay in the re∣regarde, and the Sardgent to and froe all a longste the flanke of the Company, soe shall they orderlie marche, keepinge theyre ranckes and doinge litle spoyle and disorderes.
Let him cause that they marche still in goode order, givinge ware∣ninge to the Sardgente to be verie varie, and vigilante in 〈…〉Page 28 the same, soe shall he instructe and perswade his Souldieres to be ap∣te, and readie to goode actiones, and dissaude from unrulie and bad factiones, reprehende faultes and disorderes, and commend valor, vertue, and obedience, that therbey they may be readie and apte to all incounteres and o cationes, which shall or may happen, and indu∣re them by faire meanes. To indure patiently all toyles, discomodi∣ties, and wantes, soe that they arise not into mutenies trough there impatience bad inclination and govermente which some times hap∣pen for vvante of goode govermente, and litle care of some Captai∣nes, in givinge goode instructiones and examples.
Let him be carefull that no Souldier of his Company play nor pa∣ne his armes nor aparell, for he which is givē to such vice seemed to be of litle shame and of less honor. Wherfore suche unrulie fellowes oughte to be severely punished for there villeny and bad examples. Some times it hapened a Captaine with his Companie to be employed in secrett services of importance, or may by with parte of his Cōpany; And some Souildieres that are given to learne hire and theyre of neo∣wes, doe burste with desire to knowe where he shoulde goe. In suche o cationes the Captaine oughte to by severe, and not to permit any Souldier to treate or demaunde where he is bounde. For it is a dange∣rouse wourde resultinge of litel prudence, and besides he offendeth muche, for in thies and semblable exploictes there are greate miste∣ries; wherefore the Captaine is to sheow him self rigorouse to vvhoso¦ever shall presume to intermiddell in any such fulish and dangerouse demaundes, and pardon none that shall intermiddell in the same, for example to the reste: Happie are those that are considerate scilente and obediente, and do nott intermiddell in thinges oute of sence, and not apertaining to them; for comonlie of such Souldieres are greate expectationes in time of neede, hopinge all goode corespondance of theyr goode life examples and cariadge. Wherefore suche are still fir∣ste prefered, and of moste estimation, vvhiche by all reason oughte soe to by: If a Captaine be carefull that his Officeres doe well acomplis- theyre dutie and obligationes, he is to procure that they be persones that can reade and vvrite for beinge moste necessarie, for o ther wise they beinge unable, he can hardely truste to write to them, and special∣ly any thinge of emportance, touchinge his Majesties service, for of force such o cationes muste pass trough the handes and understan∣dinge of o theres, vvhere hardlie he can truste unto, noe sorte of men or professiones are more boūde or more in neede in knowinge to rea∣de Page 29 and vvrite then the Officeres and Comaunderes of the Souldieres; for often times matteres of greate qualitie secrett and importance to theyre Kinge are recomended to ther care and chardge, vvho requi∣reth more secrecie, then advertissementes or affaires ot marchantes, or any other tradesmen vvhatesoeuer; soe that this Officer may be re∣puteth unable to fully acomplish his obligationes, and he may vvell say that he oweth butt litle to his father for not instructinge or lear∣ninge him, beinge soe greate a faulte, and specially in this profession.