Vox militis: foreshewing what perils are procured where the people of this, or any other kingdome liue without regard of marshall disciplineLondon, By B[ernard] A[lsop] for Thomas Archer, 1625
FIRST EDITION. 4to. pp. [xiv], 18, 21-58 [i.e. 56]. A-I , complete except for final blanks I3+4. Roman letter, some Italic. Woodcut initials, typographic ornaments. Light age yellowing, title slightly dusty, some marginal spots. A good copy, clean, with good margins in C19th three quarter green morocco over combed marble paper boards, title gilt in long on spine.
A rare work, a call to arms against the Spanish and Holy Roman Empire in Europe, an adaption of a work by Barnabe Rich, first published in 1578, reworked to conform with contemporary events. Rich’s second book, ‘Allarme to England’ sought to rally support, moral and financial, for England’s soldiers. Here George Marcelline adapts the work particularly in relation to Count Ernst von Mansfeld attempts to raise money and men for the attempt to recover the Palatinate. The work is dedicated to Mansfield. In 1624 Mansfield paid three visits to London. James I, the father-in-law of Frederick V, Elector Palatine, was anxious to furnish his needs for the recovery of the Palatinate, but it was not until January 1625 that Mansfeld and his army of “raw and poor rascals” sailed from Dover to the Netherlands“The death of James I in March 1625 and the accession of Charles I did little to change the fortunes of war for the English. Charles inherited his fathers chief minister, George Villiers, second Duke of Buckingham, and both men were eager to lead the country in a war against Spain, particularly after the embarrassing collapse of the Spanish match and the return of Charles and Buckingham from Madrid in 1623. That return led to the ‘Blessed revolution’, the sea change in English foreign policy that saw a renewal of the old animosity between London and Madrid and the declaration of war against Spain in 1624. The decision to go to war with Spain was greeted with cheers by those who felt Jameses government would now put its full backing behind any military operations against the Spanish, thereby avoiding the debacles that marked the expeditions commanded by Vera and Mansfield. George Marcelline summed up the concerns of many in his Vox Militis (1625), a reprinting of Barnabe Rich’s Allarme to England (1578), that warned that the English lived ‘without regard of Militarie discipline’ and were being forced to stand and behold their friends in apparent danger ‘almost subverted by there enemies unjust persecution and yet with hold[ing] their helping hand and assistance’. Marceline, who dedicated his treatise to Mansfeld, wished to resurrect the reputation of the English soldier, which by this time had taken a beating. Yet his hopes, and those of the nation, were dashed once again when another foray to the continent in 1627, this time in support of the Danes, also faltered.” David R. Lawrence. The Complete Soldier: Military Books and Military Culture in Early Stuart England.A very good copy of this rare work.ESTC S1158 STC 20980. Cockle 105.