Venice: November 1641, 1-15

Pages 231-242

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 25, 1640-1642. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1924.

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November 1641, 1-15

Nov. 1.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
273. Gio. Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
While I was hoping that I had escaped the perils of the plague by leaving the city, the gardener of this house at Barvel has fallen ill of the disease. For health's sake and to avoid difficulties that would arise if this were known by those in charge of the villa, who make no distinction of persons, I returned hastily to this city to remain until I have taken another country house and have received the orders of your Excellencies. The severe cold of the present week has reduced the mortality here and allows some hope that if it increases the plague may diminish.
I have arrived at a fortunate time for the public service and to avail myself of the remarkable and unexpected news which arrived only yesterday from Scotland. If things go on as they seem likely to do they threaten the utter destruction of his Majesty and all the royal house.
An express courier has brought word to the commissioners of parliament that his Majesty suspecting the loyalty of the marquis Hamilton and his brother, hitherto his confidential servants, the former heir presumptive of the crown of Scotland in default of the king's line, and at the same time keeping unappeased his anger against General Lesle, the earl of Arghil and baron Barimech for their part in the late movements, had resolved to free himself from an equivocal situation and to pay the debts of revenge by their death. The task of carrying this into effect was entrusted to the earl of Craford, baron d' Umon and baron di Care. They had everything ready to carry it into effect, but as their courage was not equal to the magnitude of the undertaking, as they did not consider that they alone were strong enough to meet the resistance which the persons attacked could make, they invited another friend of theirs to take part, a known enemy of Hamilton. They communicated their plans to this person and induced him to support them. He incautiously imparted the secret to a nephew, a Puritan by profession and far from friendly to the king's party. He made known without delay to Hamilton and the others the design of his uncle against them and so put a stop to the whole plan. (fn. 1) After this warning, Hamilton and Lesle had withdrawn to the country and sent information of the whole to parliament there. That body set to work to draw up the process and, contrary to his Majesty's wish, ordered the arrest of the earl of Craford and the other conspirators. They are also making enquiries to bring to light all the accomplices and afterwards to take such measures as may be found best fitted to secure the quiet and safeguard the liberty of that kingdom. The matter is discussed freely here and one may expect to hear soon of unheard of events. I need not hatefully predict with the pen what your Excellencies will, foresee. Those servants of His Majesty who are most concerned for his welfare are overcome by this event and are tortured by the greatest perplexity. I am informed that at Otlant the queen is anxious beyond measure.
Such is the account which has reached parliament. It may be coloured by prejudice, and everyone is waiting with impatience for further particulars of these most serious events.
The Court makes a different statement and tries to have it believed that the king has no share in these transactions. That they are false and contrived by Hamilton and the others for the purpose of discrediting his Majesty and for the perfecting of those ambitious ends on which they have fixed their aim.
On the other hand the commissioners of parliament, anxious to establish their credit with the people and to render the name of their prince more hateful to them, do not hesitate to take advantage of the opportunity, and announce that carried away by ambitious thoughts of securing for himself an absolute royalty, the king not only laid these snares against the life of those persons who had courageously resisted his designs, in their zeal for the welfare of the community, but that he is meditating fresh attempts in this kingdom also to the prejudice of liberty and of the most active parliamentarians.
With this object they have had the letters from Scotland printed, and under the empty pretext of securing this city against any move of the Catholics they have summoned to London by proclamation numerous squadrons of armed troops, with great noise, to keep guard day and night. Although this precaution was in no sense necessary and solely designed for the purpose indicated, yet it serves to keep a check on the licentiousness of the people and to maintain private quiet.
In accordance with the resolution when parliament separated they have reassembled to day ; but in these first debates they have not decided upon any matter of weight. The time has been spent in discussion and in waiting for a more detailed account of these recent events in Scotland, which will afford the most certain indication of the direction of future events.
An express courier has arrived from the Ambassador Ro at Ratisbon, who went on to the king without stopping. He brings news of the release of Prince Rupert by the emperor. That Sir [Oliver] Flanin is on his way to these parts, sent by Ro himself, (fn. 2) with precise information about the state of his negotiations and with instructions to urge them here to vigorous action, without which that minister has little hope of success in the negotiations begun. But here while their talk is all for action, their deeds certainly will not correspond, for the reasons already reported.
The merchants interested with Obson in the suit against Bonicelli, backed by two members of parliament who have an interest in Obson's forfeited goods, (fn. 3) still persist in their audacious demand for letters of marque. I will keep on the watch and will vindicate when opportunity occurs, the uprightness of our magistrates and the care of your Excellencies for the interests of English merchants, until such time as your instructions reach me.
London, the 1st November, 1641.
[Italian ; the part in italics deciphered.]
Nov. 4.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Haya. Venetian Archives.
274. Zuanne Zon, Venetian Secretary at the Hague, to the Doge and Senate.
With the return of the Prince to the Hague the States have again taken in hand the question of sending an embassy extraordinary to England to arrange for the renewal of the old alliance with that crown, settle upon some arrangement favourable to the Palatine's interests and conclude the marriage of the young prince of Orange. The Dutch, mindful of the instability of that nation in keeping their former promises, are not likely to be induced to come to any definite decision on the subject at the present moment. The prince, who builds his hopes of a definite settlement for the marriage of his son from this affair, seems more eager than the others, and is trying every means to bring it about. He is trying hard to reconcile differences and have the ambassadors sent when the Assembly of Holland meets, as it will do very soon.
The Hague, the 4th November, 1641.
Nov. 8.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
275. Gio. Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The meeting of parliament has afforded an opportunity to the directors of the Levant Company to lay fresh petitions before the commissioners appointed to examine their paper touching the prohibition of currants in this kingdom, that they will despatch the affair without further interposition. Yesterday, at length, they made their report to the Lower Chamber, pointing out that it would be advisable to forbid them for some time, and also to give ear to the petitions of the merchants concerned. (fn. 4) The passing of the bill is fixed for next week to be sent then to the Upper House and thereafter to the king for his assent. As I had information about this transaction I did not fail to remind them of the ideas communicated by your Excellencies and of others employed in the past to your satisfaction. But while these have served to delay a decision they will not suffice to postpone it for long. New motives are now at work. There is now in this city a quantity of currants from last year, and as they are expecting a large supply from Zante this year, those interested are fearful lest they shall not be able to dispose of them quickly, and are pressing for prohibition with all their might, considering this the surest way to escape from their dilemma. The better to secure success for their insidious demands they have instilled into the minds of the members of parliament, that this prohibition will in no wise prejudice the state customs, which profit largely by the import of currants, nor damage trade in the dominions of your Excellencies, assuring them that when the news of this decision reaches Venice, your Serenity in your own interest, will lose no time in making some advantageous proposal to the merchants, to induce them to resume their ordinary trade at Zante and Cephalonia. They represent that without inconvenience to them here your Serenity will reduce the duties, and this nation will realise considerable profits in the purchase, which will enable them to sell currants here at a lower price.
Other merchants, however, who have no interest in this voyage, do not support these assurances. Indeed they are of opinion that if the English do not go to Zante to buy currants, the Dutch will take up this trade, carry the fruit to Holland and force the English to go there to buy it, with injury to them and the loss of the freight of their ships. No one will believe that the people here will suffer themselves to be deprived of a commodity which has become an inveterate habit in the course of so many years and which is familar to everyone.
It does not appear that they can obtain the fruit from other countries. On previous occasions a certain quantity was got from the dominions of the Turks, but the people did not like it and as the owners could not get rid of it they suffered great loss, as I have already reported. I beg your Excellencies to favour me with your instructions if you consider it desirable for me to make cautious representations to his Majesty when he returns, to prevent him from giving his assent to the bill if it should pass. In the meantime I will continue to make the usual considerations, whenever it seems opportune, and by such gentle methods I will endeavour, if possible, without committing myself in any way, to prevent the proposal being passed in the Upper House even if it should get through the Lower, although I do not think this likely for the reasons already given. If it should be known to the king that such a prohibition would damage his revenues, that alone might prove sufficient to oblige him to proceed with reserve before giving his assent to the bill.
A proposal was also made in this connection to forbid the importation of grapes as well, which come from Spain. But as no one was interested in this prohibition, they went no further in the matter. The ambassador of the Catholic made no scruple of intimating that if they prohibited grapes from Spain, his master would retaliate upon the baize (bogiette) which the English send to those realms.
London, the 8th November, 1641.
276. Gio. Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The letters arrived from Scotland this week confirm the news reported and the continuation of disturbances there. At the same time they represent the course of events there in a manner less disadvantageous to his Majesty than the first accounts led one to expect, and than what the commissioners of parliament tried to insinuate for their own ends. The letters report that the Marquis Hamilton has left the Court and withdrawn to the country on the pretext that the king had laid snares against his life and the lives of the other persons named. His Majesty went to parliament followed by a numerous company of nobles and others. There he complained with feeling that Hamilton was trying by false inventions to sully the uprightness of his proceedings. He asked that he might be severely punished, and with promises of the utmost satisfaction, a thorough enquiry should be made whether the suspicions of Hamilton were true or false, and then take the course which best fits in with justice and the service of the state. The tenor of the depositions of the Earl of Craford is not yet known or of the other prisoners accused by Hamilton of being instruments for the execution of his Majesty's revenge.
Meanwhile the Marquis maintains his suspicious attitude, refuses for this reason to go to Edinburgh, and backed by the Earl of Arghil a man of great influence ill affected to the king, he is assembling troops ostensibly for defence, but not without indications that he is contemplating more weighty designs. The doubt about this makes wise men apprehensive of a civil war in that kingdom, with the issues uncertain, as although his Majesty's cause has for it the force of duty and the loyalty of his people, the Marquis is surrounded by his connections among the great lords, owners of many castles, with numerous vassals and a fortune of 300,000l. sterling, so that he will not lack means to harass the king considerably and put himself in such a position that he can wait for time to give him some favourable opening for the realisation of these machinations, ivhich it is believed he has been secretly nursing in his heart for a long while. Unprejudiced persons now lay the blame on him, for having artfully and designedly led the king to offend and then to take arms against the Scots, all for the purpose of rendering more easy the success of his present ambitious notions.
Since these last letters the bitter feelings which the queen experienced at first are assuaged and she professes more confidence in the issue. She continues to assert the innocence of her husband with great courage, as well as the disloyalty and ambition of Hamilton. On Sunday she was visited at Otland with remarkable demonstrations of regard, by many of the gentlemen here, and on Monday, by order of the parliament, a gentleman was sent to the king with the most liberal offers in this fresh emergency and begging him to return to this kingdom as soon as possible. But those who judge these offers in the light of past actions do not consider this compliment entirely sincere, and call it a trick designed for purposes not yet made apparent. I content myself with merely recording these opinions. The only safe way with events in this country is to leave the issue to time.
Although the majority of the members have not yet arrived in this city, parliament has resumed with great ardour the important proposal to remove the bishops from the Church here. To facilitate this the Lower House has passed new laws providing that they shall be excluded from parliament for the time being and from all other temporal employment.
The bill has been sent to the Upper House for approval and will very soon be examined by the nobility. It will certainly lead to very fierce disputes owing to the consequences involved. Meantime letters have reached the Secretary of the Council from the king, with orders to publish them to parliament, in which he states that it has come to his ears that he is thinking of altering the religion. He commands him to assure his subjects that such ideas are remote from his thoughts as he is resolved to preserve inviolate the religion established by Queen Elizabeth in which he was born, and which was professed by the king, his father. To prove the constancy of his determination he has sent the nomination of bishops to five churches which were vacant. (fn. 5) This at once strikes a blow at the Puritans whose sole intent is to uproot this hierarchy, and affords the greatest consolation to the Protestants. These cling persistently to their own sect and roundly refuse to embrace Puritanism, from which party they show an increasing alienation.
Fresh bills have been posted up in public places against the Puritans and their leaders. These, on their side, have published in their wrath a manifesto in which they make known to the people that they have discovered a fresh conspiracy against the liberty of the state contrived by the Catholics assisted by Protestants also. To give more credit to this announcement they have appointed commissioners to draw up a process to discover the authors. Also they cause ceaseless watch to be kept over this city by armed guards, and over parliament itself, all this being done with the aim of keeping the people apprehensive and to increase the excitement against the Catholics and Protestants. There is a danger that ivhat is begun with the tongue and the pen, may end at length with the sword and give rise some day to a sanguinary issue throughout the kingdom.
They are expecting at Court in a few days in the capacity of ambassador of the United Provinces the Sieur d' Enflit, who conducted and brought to a successful conclusion last year the marriage of the princess here to the young Prince of Orange. I gather that besides a request that the bride may be taken to Holland without further delay, he brings instructions to start negotiations to marry the prince here to the daughter of the Prince of Orange, (fn. 6) or, if this cannot be arranged, at least with the Duke of York. If the offers of money are in proportion to the present need, this minister may possibly achieve the desires of those who send him. Time and circumstances are admirably suited to the success of this excellent proposal.
I am still in this city as I have not been able to obtain another house in the country yet, though I am trying to do so. I think it necessary for the service of your Serenity not to leave before this affair of the currants is settled.
London, the 8th November, 1641.
[Italian ; the part in italics deciphered.]
Nov. 9.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Germania. Venetian Archives.
277. Thadio Vico, Venetian Resident in Germany, to the Doge And Senate.
On Monday the English ambassador with Prince Rupert arrived here from Ratisbon. The emperor has assigned them both a house, but no other treatment. Doctor Spina, the ambassador of the Palatine, is with them. Prince Rupert is treated familiarly as they play at racquets with him and take him hunting. I paid my respects to the English ambassador, who responded. He said he had come here about the affairs of the Palatine family, but feared it would prove a long business, after the manner of the House of Austria, so he said. He told me that Prince Rupert had received his liberty upon making a promise never to take arms against the emperor, and he would soon be taking leave to go to England. The ambassador might have gone with him had he not discovered in three or four meetings that the affairs of the Prince Elector were not going well. Bavaria was holding back, to whom, according to him, the emperor is more attached by constraint than by his own wish. The ambassador spoke highly of the emperor and said it would be more to his advantage to restore the Palatine than to support Bavaria, and he should remember the wars in the time of Louis of Bavaria. He then spoke to the following effect : I perceive that some of the ministers here expect us to be satisfied with little. But we have not come here to beg, but to have that which belongs to the Palatine House in integrum, because that is only a matter of mere justice and moreover it is required by the constitutions of the empire, namely that all its members shall have equality in their several ranks, and especially the electoral rank, which is the director of the others of the empire. He continued with a torrent of words, allowing no reply : But I am inclined, nevertheless to hope that his imperial Majesty, both to facilitate the peace and also in his own interest, will incline to satisfy these princes and lay them under an obligation as well as two great crowns. Because if those monarchs perceived that they were after all proceeding differently they would be constrained to employ their forces to vindicate the justice of this cause. If the negotiations did not take a favourable turn, it would be necessary to unite them with those for a general peace. I made no reply except to thank him for the confidence he had shown.
Vienna, the 9th November, 1641.
Nov. 15.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
278. Gio. Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Nothing fresh has occurred this week about the currants, and I have had an opportunity of speaking with several members of parliament in my confidence, and of endeavouring to undermine their belief in the false assertions of the interested parties. I have assured them that it is the fixed determination of your Excellencies that English subjects shall be well treated in every part of your dominions, and that they are welcomed and received like your own people. As regards the duties, all princes impose those which they consider proper in their own states, without aliens having any possible ground for complaint. The laws are general for the advantage of the prince who makes them and cannot be altered without injuring him. The duties of which they complain have been imposed for very many years and have always been readily paid by the English themselves, who have wanted to keep the trade in currants for themselves alone and prevent Venetian ships from taking them to England, although in infringement of laws of the late King James. When the trade first began the currants were taken from the islands of the Levant to the city of Venice, where English ships used to lade them to take elsewhere. To accommodate the English merchants, who submitted to the charges of their own free will, your Excellencies gave them permission to lade direct at the islands. Ostensibly out of zeal for this country, I have indicated the mischief that would result if this unjust petition of the merchants is granted, as they are only seeking their private profit without caring for the public. That the customs will lose 25,000l. sterling a year. The shipowners will lose their freights, which are considerable. The sale of cloth to those islands will cease, with serious loss to the wool trade. Finally that as they cannot do without currants here, the Dutch will take to that trade with loss and shame to the English. The only motive of the merchants is to raise the price of currants by this means, with profit to themselves, but at the expense of the poor people, who consume a great quantity of the fruit.
Many have agreed with these arguments and have even thanked me for enlightening them on the subject. They assured me that they will lay them before parliament when the matter is brought up again. The Earl of Arundel in particular, confirmed what he said before on the subject. I hear he openly discountenanced the petition of the merchants and opposed the disposition of parliament to take it up. He assured me that the people here would bear the lack of bread more patiently than shortage of currants, and if the import is prohibited, it will amount to an invitation to the Dutch to take up this trade, with the certainty that the English will have to go to Holland to buy them.
Lord Fildinch also, ostensibly as a sign of his devotion to the interests of your Excellencies, came to this house and informed me of this new move of the merchants. He called their demands unjust and injurious to this kingdom and for the sole advantage of two merchants, who between them have bought up the major portion of the currants. He told me that owing to the bad impression created by these interested persons in the Lower House, they were inclined to forbid currants for a certain time, in the hope of obtaining better conditions by means of fresh negotiations. He said that the grievances of which the merchants complain most are these : that the officials and ministers at Zante and Cephalonia force them to great expenses and presents etc. contrary to right and to the decrees of your Excellencies. That the obligation to make appeal to Venice in causes is an unbearable inconvenience. He said that moved by his desire to show his respect for your Serenity and for improved relations with this crown, he would take steps with all sincerity to prevent a harmful decision. He would tell the truth about those who are not animated by the best intentions towards the English, about whom he was fully acquainted, and there could be no doubt about the incorruptibility of Venetian justice. He urged me to speak to some of the members of parliament in order to disabuse their minds of the opposite opinions which the merchants have instilled for their own purposes, and I shall do so with due circumspection and without committing myself.
I thanked him and assured him of the desire of your Excellencies that English ships should receive the best treatment, and orders about this had been sent to your ministers. I judged it expedient to communicate to him in confidence the letters recently sent to the Rectors of Zante and Cephalonia on the subject, of which he seemed to think a great deal. He told me that this would serve to dissipate the false ideas spread by the merchants, and without losing time he has, I understand, made it known to some persons of standing.
Besides all this I have thought of another expedient and that is to induce the customs officers to oppose the petition of the merchants publicly in parliament by representing the injury done ; and I have acted with such caution that I have not allowed those officials themselves to realise that this step was suggested by me, as I made use of a third person devoted to your Excellencies and a familiar of the officials. I thought it wise not to betray excessive alarm about these unjustifiable efforts of the merchants. I am assured that these officials will make additional representations if the urgency becomes more pressing, and possibly these will prove the most effectual. In the meantime I shall await your instructions.
London, the 15th November, 1641.
279. Gio. Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The rigorous laws passed by this parliament against the Catholics have not only terrified those of England, but driven the Irish to the last pitch of desperation and have impelled them to seek the free use of their religion by the most hazardous means, as your Excellencies shall hear.
Having assembled together in secret understanding under the leadership of the Catholics most in repute, for this object, they suddenly took arms on the 1st of this month, by concerted action, in many parts of that kingdom, surprised some castles, slew the Protestants who offered resistance, burnt their dwellings and subsequently took possession of several strong positions in the country. They tried to capture the city and fortress of Dublin, but without success, as the design was discovered prematurely by the hereties, who also took prisoner two of the prime movers in the enterprise. (fn. 7)
After all this the Catholics formed a body of 10,000 men and rendered themselves masters of the country. They are devoting their attention now to securing possession of the places occupied, and there is a suspicion that they will again turn their arms against Dublin. They announce that they will maintain the faith inviolable and their obedience to his Majesty, their action having no other aim than to shake off the yoke which this parliament pretends to impose upon them and to secure liberty of religion.
The accounts of this most serious event have aroused strong feeling everywhere here and among the members of parliament in particular, because of the harmful consequences which this example may entail, and because it has happened at a time unsuitable for the transport of troops to those parts. This renders it more difficult to remedy the disorder and to stop its spreading further.
Many conferences have been held on this emergency and they have decided to send to Ireland the Earl of Lester, selected for the viceroyalty there, with Baron Conove, Marshal of that kingdom, and to send with them 8000 infantry and 2000 cavalry of this nation. The captains have been appointed for these levies without delay and the patents distributed with orders to complete them in a short period. But it will require time and that may give a great advantage to the rebels.
They have asked the city here for a loan of 50,000l. which has been promptly paid. This will all be devoted to the present occasion. They do not neglect to enquire in what ways they may cautiously prevent neighbouring princes from affording succour to the Catholics, as many fear they may, the Spaniards in particular, although the present state of that monarchy might relieve them of anxiety.
They have richly rewarded the individual who made known the conspiracy for capturing Dublin. (fn. 8) All the letters come from Ireland have been taken to parliament and read there. What is more worthy of remark, they have opened some despatches directed to the ambassador of the Catholic here, who is highly incensed at this barefaced insult and threatens all manner of things.
The parliamentarians have conceived some suspicion that the queen may have given some encouragement to these movements in in Ireland, in secret ways. Accordingly they are trying to discover the truth, and are eagerly awaiting advices from that quarter.
The event redoubles the odium against the English Catholics as well as their danger, and a proclamation has been published commanding all of them, under severe penalties, to bring their names to parliament. The intention is supposed to be to force them to leave the kingdom or at least to involve the loss of their property.
Since his Majesty's departure for Scotland and the withdrawal of the queen to Otland, as a solace in her affliction, she has sent for the princes, her children, who usually live in another village near this city. (fn. 9) Suspecting from this that her Majesty was meditating some mischievous design and that she contemplated flight and taking the prince with her, parliament resolved on Saturday, with the consent of both Chambers, that the princes should return to their original quarters. They sent the Earl of Lande to inform the queen of this decision, justifying this action by the pretext that if the princes remained with her Majesty they could not attend to their studies. As there are many priests there by no means friendly to parliament, many have conceived the fear that the princes may be imbued with noxious ideas, instructed in Catholicism and turned away from the Protestant faith ; in short that with the machinations of the Catholics coming to light daily it is not thought that the princes would be quite safe in that place. The queen dissimulates her just resentment at this action and without an answer immediately had her sons sent back to their usual residence. Parliament has sent instructions there to the Marquis of Erfort, governor of the Prince, not to permit them to go to their mother in future, and not to leave the presence of his Highness at any time under pain of forfeiting his head for any mischance that may ensue from such neglect. Only yesterday the queen's confessor was summoned to parliament, where they handed him the Bible to swear that he would answer truthfully to all that should be asked. He refused to recognise it as the true one, and without further interrogation he was sent prisoner to the Tower. The true reasons which led them to examine this priest have not transpired and this action causes well grounded anxiety to prudent people, since by the marriage treaty he enjoys full liberty as the queen's secretary.
With the arrival in the country of the news of the decision of the Lower House against the bishops, several counties have had outspoken memorials presented in parliament, signed by quite 100,000 persons, that they will not suffer this hierarchy to be taken away from the Church of England. Warned by this and fearful of more energetic action, the parliamentarians have referred a decision on this proposal to another time. Meanwhile the sittings of parliament are poorly attended. The majority of the members consider it wise not to mix themselves up in such confused and troubled affairs, and stay at home. Thus all control at present rests in the hands of those who, as authors of the late strident decisions, are called upon, for their own safety's sake, to continue boldly in the course which they have begun. Truth to tell they have transformed this country and brought England to the verge of most dangerous contingencies.
By the special despatch of a gentleman his Majesty has informed the Council of State of the events in Scotland reported, and has sent the depositions of the prisoners accused by the Marquis Hamilton and the others of conspiracy against their persons. From these it appears clearly that his Majesty had no part in these matters. This gentleman reports that Hamilton and the Earl of Arghil, being summoned by the king and parliament, have at length gone back to Edinburgh. They have seen his Majesty and abandoned their activity in collecting troops, so the first fear of civil war in that kingdom is disappearing. He states, nevertheless, that the city of Edinburgh continues to be guarded by 2000 men under General Lesle, ostensibly to prevent disturbances, but really owing to the secret determination of parliament that the king shall not leave suddenly. Many fear that he will not be allowed to return very soon, although the most influential councillors and ministers assert that he will be in this city within a fortnight. The event will show.
London, the 15th November, 1641.
Postscript : I learn that a courier from Scotland has reached the queen with the news that his Majesty will leave Edinburgh on Monday to travel back to this city. If this happens it will relieve those who love their Majesties of the apprehensions that trouble their minds.
[Italian ; the part in italics deciphered.]


  • 1. Colonel Alexander Stewart was asked to co-operate. He told Captain William Stewart, his cousin, not his nephew. Capt. Stewart told Colonel Hurry who in turn told Leslie, who warned the noblemen concerned. The depositions are in Hist. MSS., Comm 4th Report, pages 163 seqq.
  • 2. According to Vane the king wonders much both at his going to Ratisbon and coming over without order. Cal. S.P. Dotn., 1641-3, page 153.
  • 3. Probably Samuel Vassal and Alderman Thomas Soames, members for the city of London.
  • 4. The record in the Journals of the House of Commons (Vol. ii, page 297) states that the petition of the Levant Company was read on the 30th October, old style, and referred to the Committee for Trade.
  • 5. The vacant sees wero York, Oxford, Salisbury, Norwich and Worcester. The king sent instructions for the drawing up of five conges d' elire in favour of Richard Brownrigg, Henry King, Richard Holdsworth, John Prideaux and Thomas Winniff. Nalson . Hist. Collections, Vol. ii., page 499. Conges d' élire were sent for Prideaux to Worcester, on the 3rd November, for Robert Skinner to Oxford on the 11th November, Bryan Duppa to Salisbury on the 26th November and Winnif to Lincoln on the 17th December. Rymer : Foedera, Vol. ix., page 87. Brownrigg was subsequently appointed to Norwich and King to Chichester, vacant by tho transfer of Duppa. Williams had been transferred from Lincoln to York. Holdsworth never received his bishopric.
  • 6. Louise Henriette, born in 1627, who later married Frederick William of Brandenburg, the "Great Elector."
  • 7. Lord Maguire and Hugh MacMahon.
  • 8. Owen O'Connelly, servant to Sir John Clotworthy. He was voted 500l. down a pension of 200l. a year until provided with an inheritance of greater value, and a recommendation to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland for some preferment there. Journal of the House of Lords, Vol. iv., page 417.
  • 9. Richmond in Surrey. Journal of the House of Lords, Vol. iv., page 412.