The practice, proceedings, and lawes of armes described out of the doings of most valiant and expert captaines, and confirmed both by ancient, and moderne examples, and præcedents, by Matthevv Sutcliffe.
Sutcliffe, Matthew, 1550?-1629.

CHAP. XXI. Part. 7. Wherein an order is set downe concerning the officers of the army or na∣uy, or that haue charge to make any prouision for either.

1 WHatsoeuer commissary, or officer appointed for leuy, or muster of souldiers, or prouision of vi∣ctuals, munition, armes, weapons, cariages, ships, or other matter, doth deale therein fraudulently, Page  334or negligently, let him be imprisoned, & fined, and make satisfacti∣on; and if the crime deserue it, let him suffer death for it.

Annotations vpon this last law.

The ancient Captaines of the Romans as in skil and experience in warres: so in care also and labour farre excelled the men of our times. And therefore neither had they, nor needed they so many lieu∣tenants, and petit officers, as now are vsed, to beare together with them the seueral parts of their charge. Themselues saw their soul∣diers leuied, mostered, exercised, payd, lodged, prouided of armes, and victuals, and other necessaries, and had seldome any commissioners for leuies of men, and neuer any moster-masters, nor sergeant maior, nor special officers of iustice, nor quartermaster, nor trenchmaster, nor scoutmaster, nor commissaries for prouision of armes, nor victualles, nor such matters. For the pay of the souldiers, & sauing of the spoile they vsed aa treasurer. The tribunes or colonels did execute the office of the campmaster, and sergeant maior. The Generalles themselues with their counsell did ouersee the workes of the souldiers in their mines, bankes, trenches, and other military labours. Now the ge∣neral care of al matters belongeth to the Generall. But to assist him seuerall men are deputed to euery seuerall charge. Who if they be∣haue themselues fraudulently or negligently, his generall care auai∣leth him nothing. Great care therfore ought the to haue, that his offi∣cers be not onely loyall, but also carefull and sufficient to discharge that office, that is imposed vpon them. If they be not such; that hee see them not onely remoued, but also punished according to their de∣serts. For if souldiers be not leuied in time, or els if sufficient men be dismissed for money, & the summe of the people put in for souldiers, or if yong souldiers be not trained and fashioned by light skirmishes, or if yt souldiers be famished or not furnished, or haue not their armes or victuals in order, or that military orders be not obserued, or soul∣diers vnpaid or vnprouided for by fraud, or the country ransomed by Captaines, and quartermasters, or the honour of the Prince solde for mony, or other abuse cōmitted, & finally if those that deale in these of∣fices may do what they list without punishmēt, or controlmēt, what∣soeuer labour and paines is taken otherwise, yet is it to no purpose.

Amōg the Romans those that dealt in publike charges, were very sufficient men for the most part, and dealt therein loyally. But if at Page  335any time they did otherwise, they were most seuerely punished. L.aScipio and his Officers were condemned, & fined for ransack∣ing the friends and associates of the Romans in Asia. Aquilius hard∣ly escaped condemnation for his concussions & exactions in Spaine, and Sicile. Against the exactions, and fraudes of Officers, they fra∣med diuers lawes, whereby they not only punishedbthe offenders, but caused restitution, and reparation of damages to be made. Hee that by occasion ofcpassing his army by any city, or countrey ex∣torted any thing, was bound to restore double. The examples of those that tooke money for redemption of lodging, and passing of souldiers are rare. Tacitus dothdmention it in one Fabius Valens, as a notorious and singuler griedines, and filthy kind of gaine. That e∣quallity might be therin obserued, Arcadius &eHonorius, decreed that no souldier lodging in any mans house should haue more, then one third part therof, the rest to remaine to the owner, & his fami∣ly. No souldier by the orders of the Romans might exact so much as salt, light, or vineger, of those where he lodged. The lawes of France vpon paine of death forbid theirffurriers or quartermasters to take any money of any, either for lodging, or for sparing them for lodging.

By the law Iulia made against exactionsgof Officers, hee was banished, and condemned to make restitution, that either for choo∣sing or dismissing of souldiers receiued mony. Cassius caused a re∣uolt in Spaine by reason of the peoples discontentment. For that hehexacted mony of such, as would not go with him into Afrike, whi∣ther he pretended a voyage, that rich men being inrolled might re∣deeme them selues with great summes of mony. Of which abuse Caesar had no sooner vnderstanding, but he gaue order for to dis∣place him.

The Romanes condemned those Colonels, Captains,iand Offi∣cers, that brought in false moster rolles, or inter cepted the pay of souldiers to pay foure folde, and to loose their places. By the consti∣tutions of France such as deale inkmosters fraudulently, whether they be Officers or others, are condemned to dye: and yet all this is not sufficient to restreine the vnlawfull shiftes, and practices that are therein vsed.

The like seuerity did the Romanes vse against them that dealt fraudulently in any other military charge. M. Posthumius and otherPage  336amarchants for deceit vsed in prouision of victuals, and other neces∣saries for the army in Spaine, and for giuing in false accompts, and pretence of losse, where in deede they lost nothing, were banished the citie of Rome, and all their goods confiscate. But what should I neede to shew their iustice against fraude and deceit, when they v∣sed to punish and dismisse those, that were negligent in their charge? Caesar disarmed, and dismissedbAuienus, for that in a ship wherein he should haue transported souldiers into Afrike, hee put nothing but his owne priuate seruants, and goods. And for that diuers of his men, and ships were intercepted, and taken by the enemy, as they passed into Afrike, heecdismissed his Admirall, and others, and put them from their charge. For by their negligence hee receiued that great losse.

If then the Romanes when these offences were yet new, and rare, for repressing them vsed great diligence and seuerity: howe much more ought Princes to vse iustice, and seuerity herein, when scarce any punishment, vnles it be very peremptory, can restrein mens grie∣dy and vnsatiable desires? the principall cause of the neglect of mi∣litary discipline proceedeth from fraude, negligence, and insufficien∣cy of Officers. He therefore that desireth to bring things into order, must begin with reformation of Officers, who both first brought in, and since haue continued many disorders, in the proceeding and practice of armes.