Venice
April 1620, 3-15

Sponsor

Institute of Historical Research

Publication

Author

Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1910

Pages

219-238

Annotate

Comment on this article
Double click anywhere on the text to add an annotation in-line

Citation Show another format:

'Venice: April 1620, 3-15', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 16: 1619-1621 (1910), pp. 219-238. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88754 Date accessed: 19 April 2014. Add to my bookshelf


Highlight

(Min 3 characters)

April 1620

April 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
310. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Through the efforts of Bunynchausen matters have arrived at this state that the king has promised him assistance with men and with money and everything else for the Princes of the Union, as a good and cordial ally. He would do even more than they could ask for, declaring that he had protested to Spain, the archduke and the emperor that they must desist from attacking the states of his colleagues. He could do no less than defend them. But it is not known how or with what means he will carry out these acts. He has also given permission to the princes to raise as many men as they please from these kingdoms, and whispers have already begun that they will make a levy very soon.
With regard to the troops to be sent by the king to Germany, he was so certain to do it and his wishes were so apparent, that on the very day that the Spanish ambassador arrived in London, the same Bunynchausen went with Viscount Doncaster, by his Majesty's order, discussing the manner of obtaining the men, whether it should be voluntary or compulsory as provided by the laws of this kingdom, and upon the appointment of the colonels and commander, for which post they designated the Earl of Southampton. The king has said nothing about the numbers of the troops or the times of making the levy. He persists in maintaining that it is done as an act of courtesy rather than of duty and that it is for defence and urgent necessity. Thus he said to Bunynchausen: I do not wish my name to appear for several reasons. But do you and the Ambassador Dohna obtain help and money from the kingdom out of the city and the clergy, while I will quietly grant every facility, indicating clearly enough the greater reason which witholds him from saying anything now about the time the amount of money or the number of soldiers was seeing that the people of the kingdom too eagerly desire a parliament, which the king would be compelled to summon should he declare himself upon any of these points. (Onde disse ad esso Bunynchausen: Ancora io non voglio essere nominato per più rispetti, ma procurate pur voi con il Dona Ambasciatore aiuti, et denari del Regno dalla Città et dal Clero, ch'io gentilmente ve ne facilitaro l'effetto, accennando assai chiaro il maggiore rispetto, che lo trattenga a far hora dichiaratione o di tempo o di quantità di denaro o di solduti essere in vedere che questi del Regno hanno troppo brama d'un Parlamento alla riduttione del quale necessitarebbono la Maestà Sua quando ella si fosse dichiarata sopra alcuno de detti ponti.)
Bunynchausen finally accepted these promises readily, but he asked to have them in writing in precisely the same form of words not caring to put up with the vague form of words which he had obtained, as I intimated before; but the king repeated what he had said and gave his royal word. Bunynchausen could not prevail despite long effort and tireless zeal and application, involving long disputes with the Secretaries of State. He said that he had to satisfy not one prince but many, namely, all the Princes of the Union, and it was necessary to have things clear and distinct. They informed him that the king's promise ought to suffice. He replied that he trusted the promise completely but he misdoubted the memory. If his Majesty here needed help he ecriainly would not be satisfied with a simple promise. It seems that his Majesty grew somewhat angry at this way of proceeding, but some think that he only wishes to get the better of him and that he will declare himself immediately after his departure. He also promised to write his definite resolution to the new king.
The ambassador, nevertheless, is by no means satisfied, and is leaving in this state of mind for France, to return to his masters at the earliest opportunity. He says that the king here, in this fashion, will lose many friends, and his unwillingness to bind himself by writing creates the impression that he will not be bound by his promise either, the more so because, from many things which happened previously in this kingdom, he knows that they are accustomed to change the cards in their hand with great facility, even after giving a thing in writing, an opinion openly expressed by other ambassadors here who have had experience in the affairs of this country (dicendo che questo Re a questo modo perdirà molti amici; et chi il non voler esser obligato in iscritto e un dare a credere che non voglia neanche esser obligato in parola, e tanto più che per molte cose passate altre volte in questo Regno, sa che si sogliono mutare le carte in mano assai facilmente, anche doppò haversi dato in iscritto, concetto molto apertamente proferito pure da altri Ambasciatori che sono qui quali hanno qualche prattica delle cose di questo Paese).
Three times Bunynchausen refused a present of about 2,000 crowns of silver gilt plate sent to him by the king, saying he did not merit it, because he was not an ambassador; he was not here for such things but to obtain a decision from his Majesty for his Princes, and he did not want to show them that he had come out of greed for money, but simply to serve them. Finally, he accepted after many representations made to him by the Secretaries of State in the king's name. They told him that his Majesty would feel affronted if he did not accept and that all the world would believe that he left here in dudgeon. He made the condition, however, that it should be left in deposit with the agent of Bohemia, to whom he sent it, until the king should decide to satisfy the princes effectively. He remarked smilingly that so much money would make bad company for him, and it could be sent more safely to Germany by the troops that his Majesty would send there. With regard to the opinion of the world he let it be openly known that he was perfectly aware that everything he had said and the minutest details of the king's reply had shortly afterwards been communicated to the Spanish ambassador.
The same gentleman told me in great confidence that the Princes of the Union propose, if the king will first declare himself, to attempt considerable things and not confine themselves solely to the defence of the Palatinate, which they have professed hitherto, and to which they are obliged to confine themselves in view of the action of his Majesty, who has conceived very extensive ideas in this respect, a matter which has added considerably to his irresolution. Thus the point of the ambassador's representations has been addressed to persuade his Majesty that the forces of the princes are not intended to go to Bohemia, but merely to defend the Palatinate and their own states, against those who would force a passage through, saying that for this purpose the princes have already recalled a number of their cavalry which were going to Bohemia to accompany the king, who had sent them back voluntarily so that it might not appear that they were in Bohemia for offence.
Many gentlemen and even leading ladies of this kingdom show the greatest affection and devotion towards the Queen of Bohemia, not only professing generous thoughts, but urging the young cavaliers here not to waste their time in enervating and effeminate ease, but to consult together to make gifts and raise loans for that queen and the new king. Various individuals offer to make themselves responsible for payments of 2,000l. or 3,000l. sterling and more. But Dohna and Bunynchausen remain undecided about accepting, as it looks too much like begging and so far there is no necessity. They would like a loan or a general gift from the kingdom, the city and the clergy. Negotiations and discussions continue, and the king, as I wrote, gives every encouragement, but the people and the clergy show themselves more determined than ever in their desire for a parliament, and to force his Majesty to summon one. But this is too hard a morsel for him to bite off and to chew. They would like it to meet every two years according to the ancient custom, and already it is openly said that if it meets they do not wish a penny of the money to be controlled by the king or his ministers of what is granted for the current affairs of the Bohemians, but there are ideas of electing deputies who will be charged to collect and distribute all the money (ma più che mai si dimostrano costanti li populi et quelli del Clero in desiderare et procurare di constringere la Maestà Sua al Parlamento; ma è morso troppo duro la biassare et da masticare. Desiderarebbono loro che questo fosse ragunato anco ogni due anni giusta l'antico instituto; et di già si lasciano apertamente intendere che, se si ridurra, non vogliono, che resti maneggiato dal Re o da suoi ministri pur' un denaro di quanto si esborsasse per li correnti affari di Bohemia, caminando concetti di eleggere Deputati, che habbino la cura di riscuotere e distribuire il denaro tutto). Thus they postpone a decision in every way possible and it is not easy to decide whether they or the king will have the final victory in obstinacy For the most part it is believed that the people, who are most eager not to abandon the Bohemians, will finally yield on some point, but the result will be very much less noteworthy than if a parliament were summoned, and that cannot be postponed indefinitely if the king really plunges thoroughly into these affairs.
London, the 3rd April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
311. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Gondomar, the Spanish ambassador, has had three secret audiences. He is trying to mollify the king as much as possible and is playing the game which he delights in, for he knows his Majesty's nature thoroughly, and is very subtle. Thus, notwithstanding the king's intention to raise many counts and make numerous complaints to him, the ambassador has beguiled him so well that he is honoured more than ever and seems most welcome (procura d'indolcire il Re quanto può, et giuoca del giuoco che a questo gusta, ben prattico della natura della Maestà Sua, et ben accorto. Onde nonostante l'animo che haveva ella di fare molti conti et molte condoglienze seco, questo sa cose ben' invaghirla, che resta hora più che mai honorato et par che sia molto ben accetto).
At the same time many of his Majesty's operations seem to contradict each other, so that the leading ministers of his Council themselves say openly and swear that they cannot understand them, and many say and believe that some great conception of his own is reposing in the depths of his mind, though as yet undiscovered, and time alone will suffice to disclose it (contrarie tuttavia tra se stesse in un medesimo tempo si dimostrano molte operationi di Sua Maestà, onde gli stessi maggiori Ministi del suo Consiglio apertamente dicono et giurano non saperle capire, e molti discorrono et credono che habbia nell' animo suo profondamente riposto qualche proprio grande concetto, impenetrato per'anco, et che il solo tempo sia sufficiente per scuoprirlo).
The Spaniard lets it be understood that he has power to make the marriage, but only upon condition that the king decides and promises not to meddle in the affairs of Bohemia and Germany. He has told the king that the Catholic confides truly in nothing but the prudence and justice of his Majesty; he would submit the whole affair to him and make him arbiter; he would do anything to retain his friendship, because if his Majesty gives help in Bohemia and Germany, and to the States, the truce being so nearly run out, and sends his fleet to the Indies, what can the house of Austria do when attacked on so many sides and especially by this great crown; very unusual and unexampled opinions in the mouth of a Spaniard, but so much the more appreciated at this Court and by the king, fine flattery being queen or tyrant of souls in these parts more than elsewhere. He tackles if not the king, at least the ministers about the agreement made with the Dutch about the Indies and about the voyages of the English to both the East and West Indies. He objects to the arming of the twenty ships, which is going forward.
With regard to the marriage, he acts with great reserve so far as one can see at present, knowing as he does the king's eagerness for it, which has increased as the feelings of the Spaniards seemed averse from it; but everything takes place with the most profound secrecy. He said he did not know whether his Majesty still entertained the same ideas as at his departure. In private he intimates that he is aware of the detestation with which the whole kingdom regards it, and that it would never do for the Crown of Spain to send his daughter here to be so sourly looked upon, but in such case it would be necessary that a parliament should approve of her coming. In this way he hopes to curry favour with the people, by promoting an object they so greatly desire (accenne privatamente di scoprire l'abhorrimento che ne ha tutto questo regno et che non convenirebbe alla Corona di Spagna mandare cosi mal veduta una sua figliuola; che però in tal caso sarebbe necessario che anche il parlamento approvasse, che vi venisse. Con che stima di far pur qualche colpo nella gratia dei populi, promovendo quello che a loro tanto è desiderato).
But the most clear sighted men believe that all this is simply intended to waste time, and to gain a month or two for the emperor. Accordingly many ministers are constantly about his Majesty in order to warn him against trusting this ambassador, assuring him that he is doing everything with a malicious end in view, and without an atom of sincerity. Indeed, it may be said that those who dress and those who undress the king, those who hand him the cup to drink, those who bring him to his horse to put on his spurs, unite with one accord to recommend the interests of the new king, except some few, although leading men, who are well known and undisguised supporters of Spain.
They are making great preparations for next Sunday, the king having announced his intention of going in state to hear the preaching at St. Paul's, a thing he has never done' before, and which Queen Elizabeth only did once. It is anticipated with the utmost expectation by all the people and the leading men, and has given rise to much comment, but of such diverse character that I refrain from sending word to your Serenity until after the event. (fn. 1)
Sir Robert Anstruther (Ansbruster), who is going to Denmark, where he has previously served as ambassador, has received his despatch. He is really sent to ask for money to help the new king. I know this from a sure authority under the utmost secrecy. He has not left yet, because he is awaiting the arrival of some one coming from those parts, sent to his Majesty here, to learn what he is bringing. It is already understood that the Kings of Denmark and of Sweden have both deelared themselves unreservedly, and the former has promised to help the Princes of the Union with 1,000 horse.
News comes from Savoy that the duke there has said that if the king here will declare himself he will willingly do his share, and will know what to do. But perhaps these notions are remote from the truth since other things are published of an entirely different character. Possibly, he said this in order to assist his idea and purpose of a marriage, for which he cherishes no small hopes if the negotiations with Spain fall through, and the king decides unreservedly for his son-in-law, when the doughty sword of the duke would prove most estimable, besides other considerations.
A rumour is about, and the ambassador of the Most Christian himself gives it countenance not without some mystery, that the princess of France is still of tender age and the marriage with Soissons will not be celebrated for some time, although the promise for it has been given and the dispensation has arrived from Rome.
It is announced here that the Grand Turk wishes to go in person to the war against the Pole and the Emperor. The king has written to Constantinople to induce them to encourage the idea of favouring the interests of the Hungarians and Bohemians, warning the ministers there to beware of falling into the traps laid by bad men, referring to the Jesuits, as it is said that they have bribed the Grand Vizier with money, but also reminding them that it will be better to abstain from such a movement, in order to prevent some great league being made by the princes of Christendom.
London, the 3rd April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
312. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The king has been very busy these last days with the Ambassadors of Spain, Bohemia and the Princes. A very extraordinary circumstance, because he detests that kind of work and always has done so. He has sent word to the other ambassadors, who express a wish to see him, asking that they will be good enough to accept a delay of some days unless they have affairs of great importance. He sent this intimation to me also, sending the Secretary Naunton to my house to offer excuses and say that he would like to see me at the earliest opportunity and requesting me to communicate to him what I had so say, as he had some idea what it might be and wished to know it, not in order to introduce this method, which would be very unbecoming, but to show me his eagerness to hear without delay what your Serenity wishes to represent. Seeing that the instructions of your Serenity were simply to communicate the favourable issue of the affair of Medole, I thought I might tell the Secretary all the points notified to me, though I decided to tell his Majesty himself the first time I see him.
I have received two packets from your Serenity of the 29th February. I note particularly what passed at Rome between the Ambassador Soranzo and the Catholic ambassador, and the instructions sent to the former. I clearly understand that you wish us to deal with the Spanish ambassadors in precisely the same manner as the French, so I hope I shall be approved in what I have done with the Count of Gondomar. The case is very different. The orders sent to Rome about the meeting of coaches cannot happen here as at this Court it is not customary to stop them or to pass compliments in the street, except a simple salute on meeting. Whenever it is possible I will avoid speaking with that ambassador until replies to my letter reach me from the Senate; they should refer not only to the question of visits, but any other accidents which might occur, supposing, for instance, that I encountered him without being in a coach; and in any event it would be reasonable for me to be the first to speak.
To-day the prince will perform his first state tilting, to which all the ambassadors are invited. Great disputes have arisen between France and Spain, which appear to me irreconcilable. In the end I fancy the victory will rest with Spain, and possibly considerable ill feeling may arise between the Spanish and French crowns as a consequence. Some feeling has also been shown by the Ambassador of Savoy with respect to the ambassador of the King of Bohemia. I will endeavour without fuss to save the honour of your Serenity, as I hope I may be allowed to do, being confirmed by the clear light given me by your Excellencies of your intentions. You shall be informed of the circumstances next week.
London, the 3rd April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
313. To the Ambassador in France.
The departure of the Flemish galleon from Naples is confirmed. The departure of Cardinal Borgia seems near at hand. It is thought that Ossuna proposes to go to France to defend his conduct from a place of safety. The six galleys from Baia are expected at Naples. Other galleys are made ready there and they propose to put the remainder of the squadron in trim. Nothing is said about providing troops for Flanders or Germany, they are only troubling about providing money, for which they have arranged with the Genoese. Ossuna is trying to do harm in every way. He has released three Turks taken by the galleons in order to please the Porte.
This is for information to use where necessary.
The like to the following:
Spain, Savoy, England, Constantinople, Germany, Milan, Florence, the Hague, Piazza.
Ayes, 102.Noes, 0.Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
April 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
314. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
They are deputing a special person for England, and gave the ambassador formal notice of it yesterday. They shewed him the decision taken by their High Mightinesses. No one has yet been named for the post. The decision states that the ambassador will be sent upon the fishery question, but he will probably have other commissions, notably to arrange for the renewal of the alliance between his Majesty and these States. They will be the same with France, as the period of twelve years will soon expire with both States.
Sig. Alfonso Antonini has left for England, and he will proceed thence to Bohemia, so he told me.
The Hague, the 7th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 8
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci.
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
315. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I know that the agent of England has recently asked his Highness in the name of the Princes of the Union whether it is true that he offered help to Caesar, a thing repeated from many quarters. If it were true, what confidence could they have, and he asked for some declaration, adopting a high tone.
The duke replied with smooth phrases, partly confessing and partly denying. Everything depended upon the marriage which the Spaniards promised him. He followed the example of the King of England, who also desired a marriage alliance with the house of Austria. He hoped the emperor himself would ask for the infanta, as that fitted best with the lady's honour.
The resident seemed by no means satisfied as on the one hand the duke professes confidance, uses ciphers and discovers secrets, while on the other he has confidential relations with enemies. (fn. 2) This does not seem proper. The minister told me that the Palatinate will remain at peace; the Most Christian and the king his master had come to an understanding and promised to guarantee it. They seem to expect a truce while even the Palatine thinks that he will remain undisturbed in Bohemia in the assurance that his hereditary estates will not suffer.
Turin, the 8th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
316. To the Ambassador in England.
We rejoice to learn from your letters of the 13th ult. of the satisfaction with which his Majesty has received the expression of our thanks, and also your prudent replies and representations. This will all serve to cherish our confidential relations with that crown. We direct you, in a fresh audience with his Majesty, by way of confidential communication, to inform him that the Grand Vizier at Constantinople continues in his evil disposition towards our affairs. We know that his Majesty will have grieved over recent events and blamed the action taken, and by the good will he has shown towards us in the affairs of Constantinople on other occasions and by that justice which is his great glory we recognise his disposition to favour our interests everywhere. You will thank him for this. We are the more ready to inform his Majesty of all that takes place because we recognise how he aims at the universal good. We hope he will graciously receive this sign of our esteem and be pleased to give such orders to his ambassador at the Porte as his great prudence will recognise to be best fitted to divert any ill affects which might arise from the temper of the Grand Vizier to the prejudice of our peace and that of Christendom, which is disturbed by others, possibly with different intentions.
For your information solely we send you a copy of what his Majesty previously declared on another occasion of trouble at Constantinople. We wish you to impart to the prince the various affairs, in such a way as to please the king.
Ayes, 134.Noes, 0.Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
April 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
317. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The annual celebration of the anniversary of the king's accession took place last Friday. He has ruled England for eighteen years. It was marked by a solemn state tournament in which the prince and fifteen leading gentlemen displayed in his Majesty's presence their marvellous grace, bravery, splendour and pomp. The display far surpassed anything ordinary. It was an unusual circumstance for the father to grant the prince a guard of some 500 citizens, admirably armed, who appeared to accompany and serve his Highness attracted by the special esteem which they have for his worth. The cost certainly amounted to some 50,000 crowns, and there were some who said that it would have been better to have spent the money upon arms, horses and cavalry and infantry in some generous resolution in favour of the queen and the new King of Bohemia as demanded by the close blood relationship and the true interests of state.
It was not possible on that occasion to reconcile the Ambassadors of France and Spain, for whom two places were assigned by the royal command at an equal distance, some way off his Majesty, but considered absolutely equal after balancing all the conditions. France let it be clearly understood that he would not accept equality, but wished for superiority, and showed letters sent expressly by the Most Christian king ordering him on no account to yield this point. He adduced as an example a circumstance that took place some years ago, when the ambassadors attended a similar function but in positions situated differently, which could not be assigned now for various reasons. The Count of Triliero says that on that occasion the French ambassador did what he is doing, and claimed an advantage, and he thinks he obtained it. In the present instance he could only do what his Majesty thought proper. He agreed to accept the choice of one of the two places, as by that alone he thought he obtained superiority, but the Count of Gondomar would not agree and the king would not do anything else. Thus the Spaniard attended the function, and the Frenchman kept away, in considerable agitation of mind. He immediately sent off to France, and although he expressed himself with the utmost mildness, they whisper that he will be recalled and the quarrel between his Majesty and the Most Christian will be renewed.
A separate and honourable position, opposite the king was assigned to the Ambassador of Bohemia and one near him to me and subsequently places were assigned for Savoy and the States. The ambassador of the last did not come, in order not to yield to Savoy. And Savoy wished to dissuade me from going before-hand, raising difficulties, not about giving a seat to the ambassador of the King of Bohemia, but to the place assigned, which was not in a fitting situation. I thought it sufficed for the reputation of your Serenity to stand at the side of a crowned head, as they would not put anyone near Spain and France, in order not to make distinction between them in that way. I also thought the situation not much inferior to that of Spain, and it might be considered equal, and the king had this particular object in view, in the interests of his son-in-law, so I thought it better not to raise any difficulties and displease the Court by making any trouble about the title of King of Bohemia. The Ambassador of Savoy, in spite of all, arranged with me on the very morning of the ceremony, and assured me that he would come, but he did not. However his courage failed him to pretend that the position assigned to him was not fitting, and he excused himself by saying that he started to come, and had tried to get there through several streets, but owing to the crowds of people and the throng of coaches and the troops, he had not been able. This excuse is easily interpreted as meaning that he did not wish to come, in order not to recognise the Ambassador of Bohemia as the ambassador of a crowned head. At this many persons about his Majesty are offended. I have thought it right to transmit these particulars to your Excellencies, omitting several particulars which I do not consider essential. I avoided the rock of meeting the Spanish ambassador on this occasion, or speaking with him, which might have led to a difficult and dangerous situation.
On Sunday the king rode in state to the church of St. Paul's to hear the sermon, a thing he has not done since his accession. The whole city gathered there, there being great expectation and an inexplicable curiosity even among the greatest. But the results did not nearly correspond to their expectations, as his Majesty appeared with little pomp, and the preacher never alluded to his presence except to say he was there to return thanks for his recovery last year, to visit the church and to show himself to the people, and finally to beg them, though it was a case where he might command, to contribute to the repair and restoration of that most beautiful and ancient edifice.
London, the 10th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
318. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
On the 4th inst. Bunynchausen left for France with all speed, and it is thought he must have reached Paris by now. A few hours before his departure he had audience of the king, who tried to render him more satisfied, with more ample promises and a written statement, although substantially it contains no change worth mentioning. His Majesty begged him to take with him the present of plate, so that finally he agreed to do so, leaving a report behind, though somewhat artificial and little believed, that he left well satisfied.
The Ambassador Dohna perceiving at length his Majesty's great disinclination to summon a parliament, is endeavouring to raise money in other ways. He is trying to obtain a loan or a gift from individuals, abandoning the notion that doing so would resemble too much begging for the king, his master. He has already received some sums, but of little consideration so far. Some of the clergy have paid him a little; and as the king will not command, but only exhorts the assistance and will not summon parliament to grant it, the clergy cannot raise money in any other way than by virtue of the exhortations of individual prelates and priests. The Archbishop of Canterbury, stimulated by his Majesty, is engaged in this, with great zeal, assisted by two bishops. (fn. 3)
With regard to the city, when the king went to St. Paul's on Sunday, accompanied by the Lord Mayor and Aldermen, he made, on leaving them, a friendly request to this effect, for their private ears. But they are eager for a parliament, and detest the idea of introducing any new methods to the detriment of the ancient institutions of the kingdom, and establish a precedent which might in the future be adopted for different circumstances. They show themselves quite ready to demonstrate their affection for the new queen and king in every possible way, but they cannot make up their minds what to do. The Ambassador Dohna is urging the matter strongly and hopes for good results (Quanto alla Città, il Re dominica con la sua andata a San Paulo havendo seco Milord Maer con gli Aldermani, in disparte gli fece all' orrecchie un affettuosa instanza per l'istesso efetto; ma questi pure bramosi del Parlamento, abhorrendo d' introdurre alcun nuovo stile con disavantaggio degl' antichi instituti del Regno, et con fare foro in un esempio di molto momento, con dubbio che per l'avvenire si pretenda poi l'istesso anco in altri casi diversi; ben pronti dimostrano con la volonta in manifestare il loro affetto, con ogni grande dimostratione verso la nova Regina et il novo Re, ma non sanno risolrersene. L'Ambasciatore Dona tuttavia preme e spera in fine bene).
For the rest of the kingdom some leading Cavaliers are actively making a good collection, especially the Earl of Southampton, who hopes to have the command of the first considerable levy which is being made in this country, whether in the name of the Princes of the Union or simply of the King of Bohemia, as they expect to pay the levy with the said money they are collecting. They expect a considerable amount and Dohna would like to remit a large sum to Germany by the fair of Frankfort which takes place every Easter. But as it depends upon the free will of each individual and upon incessant application, it is bound to involve a great deal of labour. They might raise a large amount for one time, but hardly for long, although they say that in this kingdom things are done more voluntarily than from necessity, but people do not naturally care to continue to pay their money unless they are obliged, so God alone knows what time will bring forth. The new king can never hope for any solid foundation in this way, nor can he elaborate great designs upon a thing so difficult, uncertain, hazy and fragile.
Dohna had audience of the king last Monday, and obtained most friendly words and fine phrases, but the conclusion arrived at was that the time had not yet come for his Majesty to declare himself openly, either for himself or for the interests of this country, or in the interests of his son in law or daughter. He told him that he had once more stirred up the mayor and alderman, that he had confirmed the zeal of the prelates, and in fact he was acting in a way that Dohna himself would recognise, and he would do everything in the interests of his children, and never a day, hour, or moment passed, he added, but he thought of their interests with all his heart.
It appears that the ambassador has given both his Majesty and his Ministers to understand that it would be proper and required by the present situation for his Majesty to make strong representations to the Grisons, the Swiss and the Duke of Savoy to block the way against troops going from Italy to help the emperor. His Majesty told him that he would willingly write to the Cantons of Zurich and Berne, with whom he had good relations, but he had nothing to do with the Grisons and no understanding whatsoever. With regard to the Duke of Savoy he pointed out that by agreements with the house of Austria he was bound to grant a way through. On the last occasion of agreements with his Highness his Majesty had interposed for the settlement. Accordingly, if any attempt was made now, by virtue of his offices, to prevent a passage, it could not be done without the duke fighting and thus involving himself in war, and that would involve his Majesty also, who would be obliged to help him by virtue of the treaty and because the duke had acted at his instigation. In short, he showed his firm decision not to engage in war at present in order not to place himself under the yoke of his parliament and because he fears to make the war of his son-in-law one of religion, rendering it wider and universal, and because he is naturally strongly devoted to peace. Moreover the attacks of the Spanish ambassador here and his artifices, so gently insinuated, strike him to the heart, with these proposals now for a marriage, now to make him the arbiter and give him the glory of the peace, which keep him occupied with several designs.' Thus the season will pass, the chief object of the Spaniards. Perhaps this will o' the wisp of the marriage, the more it is desired on this side, will disappear the more easily and remain in the dark like everything else, ending finally in smoke. This is the opinion of the wisest and most prudent, although the body of Catholics hopes and the body of Protestants greatly fears the conclusion of this alliance.
They say that the Duke of Savoy is in great difficulties, with the marriage negotiations with the emperor, which raises no small suspicion here for the interests of the King of Bohemia, where his ideas are becoming better known as well as his skill in making capital out of the Bohemian affair.
A courier has arrived from Vienna for the Spanish ambassador here. They say verbally that the emperor's affairs are prospering exceedingly. I hear that he brings some proposals for an accommodation, but Gondomar does not move, and proceeds with great reputation, seeing no need at present to unsheathe all the weapons he holds. Everything will come out in time. But his proceedings pass with great secrecy, for the most part alone with the king, as he once intimated that he hated even the presence of the Secretaries of State, so they are politely requested to leave the room. Many of the leading Lords of the Council doubt whether his Majesty communicates to them all the things he treats of with the said ambassador and if he does not keep back some in the depths of his mind.
The levy of Andrew Gray, the Scot, proceeds very slowly, but for no other reason except that the soldiers after the deplorable custom of modern times, think of nothing but their own advantage.
I have received four packets of letters from your Serenity this week, three of the 7th and one of the 13th ult. I will use the news they contain as instructed. May God quench the wrath of this minister at Constantinople and grant long peace to our country and relief from all peril.
London, the 10th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 11.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
319. To the Ambassador in France.
We note the confidential communication made to you by the English ambassador about the Palatine. We have given him the title of king in our negotiations, and have received an ambassador sent by him. You will thank the English ambassador for his show of confidence, assuring him that you value it greatly and that it increases our obligations to the King of Great Britain. To continue to maintain a good understanding with that minister cannot fail to greatly advance our interests and more firmly establish his Majesty's friendly feelings towards the republic.
Ayes, 143.Noes, 3.Neutral, 7.
[Italian.]
April 11.
Senato,
Mar.
Venetian
Archives.
320. Whereas Colonel Henry Peyton has asked that the orders for his wages may be levied for the time he has served:
That the Ragionati Ducali be directed to levy the orders for payment to Colonel Peyton until the 10th May next in the manner prescribed by this Council on the 4th February last, and that his payments be levied from time to time in this city, as he requests, without other warrants, for which notice must be given to the Commissioner Venier.
Ayes, 126.Noes, 4.Neutral, 9.
[Italian.]
April 11.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
321. VALERIO ANTELMI, Venetian Secretary in Germany, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Ambassador Extraordinary of Savoy had a second audience when he condoled with the emperor on the death of his son and sister. (fn. 4) He told his Majesty of the duke's offer to send his son with 10,000 foot and 2,000 horse to serve in the present war, and asked for the title of king for the duke and that the emperor would take one of his daughters to wife. He received a most courteous and friendly reply, but in general terms and non-commital.
The Ambassador of Florence who also has instructions to approach the emperor about a title and a marriage, has drawn his Majesty's attention to the close friendship of Savoy with England, the States of Holland and the United Princes of Germany, and his alliance with your Serenity, and his intrigues with Anhalt and Mansfeldt for the crown of Bohemia and even for the empire, and to accept his force would be very dangerous.
Vienna, the 11th April, 1620. Copy.
[Italian.]
April 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
322. PIERO CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Five ships have already left Lisbon with the troops for Flanders, although there was some doubt whether they would go, as his Majesty sent them sealed orders, which led some to believe that they would be sent towards the Philippines, as fears of attempts by the English and Dutch are constantly growing here. News has reached here by land that the ships which left last year have arrived at last, although they escaped with difficulty after a stiff fight with the Dutch.
The Ambassador Arthon has entered Court to reside in the name of the King of England. He has seen the king, but has not yet introduced any business, as his Majesty left recently to pass these holy days at the Escurial and for the state ceremonies of transferring the bodies of his father and grandfather to the new monument in the church of S. Lorenzo.
I understand that when the Secretary Cerizza went to call upon this ambassador he asked him earnestly whether the republic had recently made an alliance with the Dutch. He answered, Yes. When asked for the terms, he replied that it was a league for mutual defence and told him the articles. I hear that the secretary was greatly astonished. The ambassador never said a word about this to me, when I went to pay my formal visit on his arrival.
Madrid, the 12th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 13.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
323. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
With regard to the negotiation of Boil and the suspicions of Vives, in addition to the couriers sent to France and Spain, the duke has complained to the nuncio and the agent of England, giving them copies of all the papers to send to their masters. Every one remains in suspense, it being impossible to deny the negotiations. It is said that the duke has promised a safeconduct to Boil, and the French have also sent to him to come, otherwise his Majesty will not interest himself in the affair.
With regard to the manifesto sent by the emperor against the Bohemians, the duke has explained to the agent of England his duty, as a member of the empire to carry out the orders and publish them. He asked him to examine them and advise him what to do. The agent seemed to deprecate publication and said his Highness might excuse himself, but suggested that if they did publish Caesar's manifesto they should also publish that of the King Palatine. Thus both remain in suspense.
This minister professes that a gentleman now at the Most Christian Court on behalf of the Princes of the Union, is gaining much ground in their interests. He has disabused the French of the idea that the King Palatine desires the destruction of the religion and of the house of Austria, but he has decided to permit liberty, he did not wish to attack the house of Austria, but to defend himself, and to hold that kingdom which he had been compelled by main force to take after having several times refused.
He told me that in order to establish peace the King Palatine was even ready to submit to some loss, and to contribute 30,000 thalers yearly to Caesar, but the States would not allow it. He assured me that Gabor was very closely united with the Bohemians.
Turin, the 13th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
324. ANZOLO CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The agent of the United Princes, M. de Benincausa, who has been in Holland and England, arrived here the day before yesterday, and went post to the king. He has two duties to perform, to acquaint his Majesty with his negotiations in the said countries, and to thank him for the embassy sent to Germany, begging him to give such instructions to his ambassadors that the Princes of the Union may be able to negotiate with them with confidence.
Paris, the 14th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
325. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
After I had sent off my last despatch of the 10th inst., three of your Serenity's letters reached me, two of the 14th ult. with news, which I will use as instructed, and the other of the 20th ult. with orders to thank his Majesty and urge him to send express commands for the continuation of the offices performed by his ambassador at Constantinople in aid of the interests of the most serene republic.
His Majesty returned from Theobalds on Saturday. I immediately asked for an audience, which was readily granted. I told him of the termination of the Medole affair, at which he seemed considerably pleased. He displayed equal astonishment at the sinister proceedings of the new Grand Vizier, showing that he could not understand the great and tyrannical authority exercised by the Turkish ministers. He told me that he understood the preceding Vizier, recently deceased, had been, on the contrary, very prudent and able. He spoke of the death inflicted on Borisi as a savage barbarity. He asked me if anything except his inveterate hate for the capture of the galeot, (fn. 5) had helped to bring him to such a decision. He also asked me if it were true that all the Venetian ships had been arrested at Constantinople, as was reported, it being a matter of public conversation that they had threatened war against the Kingdom of Candia. At the end he showed the utmost readiness to give express and efficacious orders for the continuance of the said offices. He expressed his satisfaction at what his ambassador had already done. He at once ordered the Secretary Naunton to draw up the letters to my entire satisfaction, and that official, without delay, being urged on by me gave me two sealed letters and a copy, which I forward with a translation. Naunton asked me to take charge, directing them to Constantinople, telling me that it is not usual to send them thither except by the ships as occasion arises, which took much longer and was less certain. I have taken information as to the safest and quickest way of sending them to the Porte, those from this city being habitually sent by the merchants, and I thought it best to send them at once by special messenger to Brussels, where I expect they will catch the ordinary, who left last week for Venice, and thus I shall save eight days, so that your Excellencies' commands may reach me as soon as possible.
I have to add the little remaining news of the week, which I shall spend for the rest in the yearly tribute to God, it being Holy Week. So far as I can discover the Spanish ambassador has not as yet conducted any formal negotiations except about the marriage. As regards the Bohemian affairs, he has always spoken in the broadest and most general terms. He offers 600,000l. sterling as dower, a fourth to be paid down at once, in order to whet the king's appetite in his present scarcity of money, which is truly very great. In the matter of religion he asks for less than the king was previously willing to grant to the French, and as regards the children he apparently claims no more than that they shall be under their mother's charge until the age of seven, and afterwards under their father. According to the ambassador and those who side with him it will certainly be arranged. But as I have written before the most prudent do not believe it, although some say that perhaps this and some other marriage with the Palatine house may be necessary in order to extinguish the flames of the present war.
The courier who recently arrived from Vienna, and who belongs to the Count of Gondomar, and generally accompanies him, is now leaving for Spain, taking news of the ambassador's negotiations, who asserts that he will either go to Rome himself for the dispensation, or send Father Maestro there. It is thought that he has special orders to secure the prolongation of the truce with the Low Countries, but he has said nothing about it yet. In private conversation he comments a great deal upon the trade with the Indies and the designs of the Dutch, saying that the East may be the mistress of the Catholic king, but the West is his bride and wife.
Six ships of merchants here recently left for the West, but a seventh, which should have gone, was miserably wrecked in the Thames through the want of skill in the sailors. Sir [Roger] Nort, who wished to make the voyage to the shores of the Amazon, is still detained, as I reported.
The mayor and aldermen of this city have decided not to give a definite sum to the new king, but to make a voluntary collection in each ward, each alderman having charge of his own. They propose that each person shall sign a paper promising the sum of money which he proposes to pay, and they say that some are willing not only to pay down a good sum, but to bind themselves for so much a year. This would certainly be very important, but it is not certain whether it can easily be done.
The country gentlemen, earls and titled nobility are waiting for some sign from the king, and keep procrastinating under the pretext that they wish to receive the same honour and that they do not wish to do anything which might displease his Majesty. The Spaniards declare that however great the sum of money obtained from this kingdom may be the new king will not be able to do more than pay his troops for one year, as he owes them a great deal and they are on the verge of mutiny. In this way he will keep his army together for this year, by satisfaction with the past and hope for the future. The king has heard with great wrath that the Spaniards have declared elsewhere that he cannot move owing to his poverty and because he has his hands full with Ireland, which has recently risen against him, an absolute lie.
Sir [Robert] Anstruther has left for Denmark. We hear from the Hague of the selection of numerous ambassadors extraordinary, especially for this Court and Venice. Here the pretext is the fishing question, but really it is in order to renew the league with this crown and to give warmth to the affairs of Bohemia. In France and here they will possibly take the opportunity to negotiate more precisely for the prolongation of the truce. They have said something here about sending an ambassador to the new king, but it has been dropped, and nothing is being done now, except some negotiations for an accomodation.
The news of a great defeat inflicted upon Bucquoi, which recently reached here, caused great rejoicing in the city (fn. 6) ; but such news of success seems rather to stay the king from helping his son-in-law than otherwise. They hope here that the reluctance of the Duke of Ossuna to leave Naples will greatly assist the Palatine, as they think it is the duke's own caprice, not to obey the orders from Spain, and that consequently he will not deprive himself of troops and money by sending them to the emperor.
A leading minister told me that the gentleman of the King of Bohemia who went to Venice took letters from that king to your Serenity with a wrong title, but on the advice of good friends he would not present them. He told me with every sign of distress that that king was served everywhere by very unskilful ministers unfit for the charges they sustain, and he intimated it would be a good thing for some one to go from here to help them. I have noticed the same opinion in many, and possibly more than one person has designs in that direction.
London, the 14th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
Enclosed
in the
preceding
despatch.
326. To SIR JOHN AYRES at Constantinople.
Upon news we have received that the Premier Vizier here hath put him that was Dragoman of the Signory of Venice to death (being taken here to be a man of good discretion and merit) his Majesty has commanded me, upon notice hereof taken by the Venetian ambassador here residing, to direct you to do all the fairest offices upon can in the honour, right and favour of that famous republic and of their interests and to interpose his Majesty's name and credit with the Grand Seigneur and his principal officers of estate (as you shall find by conference with the Venetian Bailo there that it may most conduce to the service of that Signorie), and to make the clearest demonstration of the great esteem and respect wherewith his Majesty doth sincerely honour his professed alliance and perfect correspondence with that State so that they may receive all satisfaction without any aspersion of disgrace or disreputation in this extraordinary accident or in any other that many ensue in consequence to their prejudice in anything wherein they may find themselves interested. To which effect though we here make account that all the ambassadors of Christendom residing here will concur and express themselves as in an example so nearly touching them all and which may be drawn into practice upon any or all of them upon any resentment that may be taken up, yet it is his Majesty's pleasure that you should make appear his own signal and peculiar interest herein, and how ready he would be to sympathise and take to heart any manner of indignity that should be offered to that noble state to which he stands so extraordinarily and so entirely well affected.
His Majesty will expect your particular account of all this passage and all the circumstances of that which has passed, and the very causes thereof as of your own performances and the acceptation which you shall find afforded to his Majesty's earnest mediation herein.
We hear of great preparation of biscuit and victuals and new bridges made by the Basha of Buda as if they had a design to make their advantage upon Christendom in this conjuncture, as they are wont of old stare al' erta and their predecessors have done heretofore, upon all like overtures.
We look to hear often and often from you of all occurrences there, with more frequence and diligence than you have used heretofore; the times growing so full of motion, as you will perceive by my former of the 16th of last month.
Your very loving friend assured,
Robert Naunton.
Whitehall, the 3rd April, 1620.
[English.]
April 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
327. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I recently called upon the French ambassador. He told me that the English ambassador had communicated to him the suggestion of the Most Christian that the two sovereigns should act jointly in order to secure an accomodation in Germany, and the French king had decided to send an embassy to Germany. This decision has not been published here. If I have not discovered everything that Carleton communicated to the French ambassador I have at least got a confirmation about the sending of the embassy.
Carleton told me, what your Serenity will have learned from the Ambassador Lando, that three leading nobles, the clergy and some towns will contribute money to help the new King of Bohemia. The king knows about this and gives secret encouragement, although such reserve creates no satisfaction here.
One of the leading men here told me that the King of England is sending to Denmark to ask the king there to grant a loan of a considerable sum to his son-in-law, as he himself wishes to avoid the disagreeable necessity of summoning a parliament. Some here add that he is sending to persuade the King of Denmark not to attack the Hanse towns, as this would prevent them, with the present disturbances caused by the Duke of Lune-burgh, (fn. 7) from their purpose of helping the Princes of the Union with three or four thousand foot.
The Hague, the 14th April, 1620.
[Italian.]
April 15.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Lettere.
Venetian
Archives.
328. To the Ambassador in England.
Your letters of the 27th ult. reached us this morning, in which we have specially noted what you write about the Spanish ambassador there. As there is no meeting of the Senate this week before the despatch of the ordinary courier, we have decided to send you the duplicates of what we wrote on the 29th February last, although we hope it has already reached you. From that you will see the orders we gave to the Ambassador Soranzo at Rome on a similar occasion, and it will serve for your information.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 See the letters of Chamberlain and Nethersole to Carleton, Cal. S.P. Dom. 1619–23, pages 131, 132, Gardiner: Hist, of Eng. iii, pages 341, 342.
2 Wake's opinion of the duke's behaviour at this time is given at the close of a despatch to Naunton dated 31 March, new style: "That which your lordship hath heard of the great offers made by the Duke of Savoy to assist the emperor you may be pleased to understand as a compliment and you shall not err in making that judgment thereof, until you see effects to the contrary. He cannot justly be blamed for holding fair correspondence with them, because all other princes do the like and if he could advantage himself any way by their friendship I think he would willingly do it, especially in the marrying one of his daughters either to the emperor or the King of Spain. But there is small likelihood of their gratifying him in anything but in words and I suppose he doth pay them with money of the same alloy." State Papers. Foreign, Savoy.
3 Durham and Winchester.
4 Ferdinand's eldest son, John Charles, died on the 16th December, 1619, aged fourteen; his sister Eleonora died in a convent on the 28th January, 1620, aged thirty-eight.
5 According to Nani Ali hated Venice because of two pirate galeots of his taken by the Venetian barques. Storia di Venezia, i. page 231.
6 He was defeated by Prince Christian of Anhalt in what Khevenhüller calls a sharp skirmish at Eggenburg on the 10th and 11th March, losing 2,000 men, the Bohemian losses being 800. Khevenhüller: Annales Ferdinandi, ix. p. 1033.
7 He was engaged in a dispute with Hamburg.