His Majesty having lain here at Oppenheim some three days, till the rest of the army were come over at Oppenheim, and at Stockstadt, the army being come over, the Spaniards were afraid to stay in any place, that was not wondrous strong; and their fear being so great, they quit Stagne setting it on fire; as also the Lotterings garrison did quit Worms, having first abused the town with plundering, and other intolerable damage and hurt, they retired all unto Frankenthal, being strong by fortification, they made it strong of men, having retired above eight thousand Spaniards within it, who being blocked up, had never the resolution or courage once to have fallen forth on the Swedens forces, but kept themselves close within walls.
His Majesty taking his march towards Mainz, which before was blocked up, on the other side of the Rhine next to Frankfurt, with ships, and with the Landgrave of Hesse's forces, his Majesty about the midst of December, in cruel tempestuous weather for frost and snow, coming before it on a Sunday in the afternoon, and having himself rode about the town, on the Pfalz side, and recognosced both works and walls, the army standing in battle, his Majesty having first commanded the horsemen, some to quarters, and some on duty: The foot brigades were commanded towards their several posts, where Colonel Hepburne's brigade (according to use) was directed to the most dangerous post, next the enemy; and the rest to theirs. The night coming on, we begun our approaches, and prepared for making ready of our battles, where, according to custom, men were ordained to make cannon baskets, some to provide materials, some to watch, some to work, some to guard the artillery, and some to guard the work-men, and some to guard the colours before the brigade: the day approaching, having made ready the batteries in the night; as also having wrought in the approaching by day: the service on both sides beginneth with cannon and musket, so that our cannon off the water, and from the other side, did shoot blanck within the town, which made great terror amongst the inhabitants, the bishop being removed towards Koblenz, he did leave two thousand Spaniards within the town, who were in doubt of the burghers' fidelity, neither yet did they expect any relief, and the town being wide of circumference, more than they were able to beset, they begun betimes to think on accord; yet, they resolved, to make it the more honourable, their best was to prolong time.
Colonel Axallilly, a Swede, being come to visit his Majesty, having had no employment in the beleaguering, being at supper with Colonel Hepburne and me, on our post, by our guard-fire, being merrily discoursing, that if a misfortune should happen unto him there, what should be thought of it, having had no charge, he having foretold a mishap unto himself, the next day after dinner hard by me, the leg was shot from him with a cannon bullet, who after that was carried by my folks unto his lodging, and being cured, served after with a treen or wooden leg.
At this siege our brigade did sustain more hurt than the rest of the army, being most employed on all commands, both in respect of their valour, and of the good conduct and fortune followed them, and their leaders.
The third day, the skonce without the town being hard pressed, and we having on our quarter approached to the walls, and the town, from the water, and from the Landgrave side, having sustained great loss by their cannon. The enemy finding there was no hope of relief, he entered in a Treaty, and gave up the town on accord; being suffered to march out without arms, they were conveyed to Koblenz: they being gone, quarters were made for the whole foot within the town, where three days before Christmass we were quartered, and remained there, being lodged in the extremity of the cold with the Hofstadt, to the fifth of March 1632.
The twenty-fourth Observation.
His Majesty of Sweden having crossed the Rhine, the prisoners that were long banished, being ten years out of the Pfalz, were then encouraged by their liberty attained unto, through the valour and wisdom of his Majesty of Sweden, who did bring the keys of the prison, and of their houses, and the pass once opened, they begun to return home, and the strangers removed, they rejoiced at their home coming, in the entertaining of their friends, that fought, for them, and they did perceive the terror and fear of their enemies, that drew all unto Frankenthal, as unto the strongest corner of their feeble hearts, where it was evident to see, their removing from all was drawing near. Frankenthal being blocked up, and victuals debarred from them, it was impossible for them to subsist long.
I did observe here, at the in-taking of Mainz, that toil, travail, danger and resolution were our best means, in getting this town in three days time; our cannon having from the Hessen side so spoiled the burghers on the streets, and within their houses, finding their own hurt, being stronger than the garrison, forced the garrison to accord, by that means preventing their own ruin, and the loss of their goods, if the town had been taken by storm of hand. And therefore, for sparing of their city, they promised his Majesty, for keeping good order, threescore thousand dollars.
Likewise I did observe, by Axallilly's loss of his leg, that many times hurt comes to men in that kind, as a presage of worldly luck, in getting, as they say, something to the sore foot; for he, before this, being but mean in estate and employment, was afterwards made rich by governments. Divers others I could instance under our army, were advanced to riches, after receiving of mean hurts, and on mean occasions of service, as this was, being but a looker on. But for me, let me have health, and glad poverty with credit, for riches I desire not, if that I may have more of credit than others; and that shall be my prayer, to keep my mind in an invincible place, that external things move me not: neither would I suffer fortune to be able with her threatenings to pierce me, having tried sharper that could not dare. Let us then be content with our lot, and though the means we should live on, be detained from us, yet let us wrong nobody by oppression, in conquering by unlawful means, and doubtless the Lord will conserve our healths, and sustain our bodies with sufficiency, and so being honest, we need never be ashamed to be thought poor in men's esteem, being rich in Christ.
Here also I did observe, that oftentimes those, that durst not lift up their heads in time of danger, do often better speed and thrive in worldly things, than those that merit the best: as was seen on those brigades entered first into Mainz, that did get both prisoners and spoil with the best quarters, when others, that deserved better, were worse quartered in empty houses, while as other colonels and soldiers, of far less deserving, were making up of estates for their posterity, in better quarters, within the Pfalz and Franconia.
But on the contrary; valourous men their labours and travails ought to be rewarded, with honour and profit, by those they did truly serve. For if great undertakings in this kind, before towns, in extremity of danger, were nobly recompensed with great rewards; that would encourage men again to refuse nothing to be undertaken, that was honourable: and on the contrary; nothing discontents worthy men more, than to be rewarded like cowards; and those that stood out the danger, like those that durst not lift head when the storm blew; and when the hope of reward is the comfort of men's labours, than all toil seemes to be easy: and it is a hard thing, when the diligent and industrious is disappointed of his hire, and when he is rewarded with injury, who did merit well; this of all evills, is most unsufferable, when he must suffer loss that expected help: for on the contrary, it were more just, that notable virtues should be notably rewarded, with badges of honour, to make all others tread in the glorious path of virtue, and well-doing.