Venice
July 1620, 1-9

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

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1910

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296-311

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'Venice: July 1620, 1-9', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 16: 1619-1621 (1910), pp. 296-311. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88760 Date accessed: 29 August 2014.


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July 1620

July 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Dalmazia.
Venetian
Archives.
417. FRANCESCO MORESINI, Count and Captain of Spalato, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Yesterday Mr. Paul Pinder, ambassador of the King of Great Britain, arrived unexpectedly in this town on his return from Constantinople, very tired with his voyage of forty five days. I immediately provided him with quarters for the quarantine, and with everything necessary for himself and his suite. I called upon him, and as the Bailo particularly recommends him I will see that he is released as soon as possible and provided with every comfort he may require, knowing that anything I may do in his honour will give your Serenity satisfaction.
Spalato, the 1st July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
418. ANZOLO CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
There now seems a likelihood of disturbance in this kingdom. The Duke of Nemours left unexpectedly at midnight on Saturday, they say to go to the queen mother. He left because letters were intercepted to him from the Duke of Savoy, speaking of raising troops for the queen mother, so he feared that he might be put in the Bastille. On the following day the Count of Soissons and his mother also fled towards Angers, in great disgust at finding themselves trifled with about the marriage with the king's sister. There is a report now that a commission has been sent to Spain to treat for the marriage of Madame to the second son of the Catholic king, with the condition that Flanders shall be given to him after the death of the Archduke Albert. This idea came into the heads of the Lords of the Council after they had seen the conclusion of the marriage of England with the Spanish Princesses. There is now a majority in France in favour of anticipating every other power in having connections or alliances with Spain, and the sight of that alliance with the English moves them the more to promote the marriage of Madame to Charles, the Spanish king's second son. The discovery of these practices by the Count and Countess of Soissons excited their wrath and accelerated their departure.
Paris, the 2nd July, 1620.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
July 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra
.Venetian
Archives.
419. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
With regard to the embassy they have decided after much wavering and vacillation that Sir Edward Conway (Cornouals) and Sir Richard Weston shall go together to the archduke, to the princes electors, the ecclesiastics of Germany, the Duke of Saxony, and the town of N?urenberg; in addition to the mission of Wotton, who has not yet started, but is busily making his preparations and on the point of leaving. With him will go Nedersol, appointed some time ago, as I wrote, to act as secretary to the new queen and as resident with the United Princes.
On his journey to Venice Wotton will go to the emperor, the Archduke Leopold, the Duke of Bavaria, the United Princes, Ulm and Strasburg. They will direct matters towards an accommodation, advancing the opinions which I reported.
For the affairs of the company of merchants of Muscovy they are sending Sir John Merich as ambassador, who has been there before. He will also have instructions to try and recover 2 to 300,000 crowns which his Majesty lent to that emperor last year for the needs of the war against the Poles. It appears that recently the King of Poland has renewed his old request here, by means of a certain Captain Buch (fn. 1) to buy a few horses and to make levies in this kingdom of infantry for his own needs against the Turks. He is informed that it may be permitted if they can have an assurance that they will not go against the Bohemians and their allies, the Muscovites or any other friends of this crown, but only against the Turks, and that the soldiers shall have prompt payment. However, these things are far from being carried out and cannot so easily be arranged in the present state of affairs.
Mr. Paul Pindar has returned from Constantinople, where he has hitherto served as ambassador. The merchants complain to the Levant company and the king about the sending of Mr. Silvester Ector to succeed him in those parts, saying that neither from his quality nor his abilities is he fitted to be their chief. (fn. 2)
The States have recalled all their pensioners and half pay men from this kingdom to take up their charges and the command of their companies.
The levy of Vere proceeds and they are beating the drums. As simple captains they have chosen the Earl of Oxford, Lord Chamberlain of the kingdom, and the Earl of Essex, who wished to go to Bohemia as an adventurer with many others of equally high rank. Owing to the youth of these (fn. 3) they have nominated as their lieutenants and officers, captains experienced in war, at least forty years old. By the power of money and their personal following, in addition to the general propensity of the multitude, they will easily obtain a singularly fine levy, as they believe that at least a hundred gentlemen with incomes of from 2,000l. to 3,000l. will enter as simple soldiers. It is true that they will need many more commodities than ordinary soldiers and they will be apt to create a famine quickly wherever they go. However, the show will be great, and one must believe that they will fight better for honour than the others in every circumstance, and what is more important, will interest this kingdom more completely in the affairs of the new king, where its honour is so deeply engaged, and will facilitate the collection of money, which nevertheless proceeds apace.
The reply given by the Archduke Albert to the office of his Majesty's agent was very reserved, as I wrote on the 18th ult. not even mentioning the Palatinate, which was the sole object of the representation. His Highness simply states that he does not think his Majesty can take offence at his siding with the emperor, who is so near in blood and in every other way.
A reply has also come from Lorraine to the letter which I reported. The duke thanks the king and says he will lean neither to one side nor the other, but he will allow his subjects to please themselves, and that as many have gone to help the Bohemians as the Emperor. As his Majesty, to keep that prince out of the way, in some sort invited him, as the Duke of Savoy has also done, to remain neutral with himself, and ready to procure an accommodation, in the conclusion whereof he promises to mention him, he thanks him warmly and expresses his appreciation of the offer.
The season here is very dry and without rain, and for lack of moisture the hay is reduced to a wretched condition, while many animals are perishing in the country from hunger.
London, the 2nd July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghiltorra.
Venetian
Archives.
420. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Your Serenity's letters of the 5th ult. reached me this week. I will execute the commissions you give me with the king both in regard to Prince Joinville and in presenting the letter of thanks for his demonstration in the interests of your Serenity and the letter written to the Grand Seigneur. Before I read the latter I suspected, from the knowledge I begin to have of the character of this Court and of the skill of the ministers, especially in matters far off such as those of Constantinople, that they would not readily maintain that decorous tone habitually adopted by the most serene republic in her dealings with the Porte. Accordingly I aimed at obtaining a copy to send to your Excellencies. I perceive that my suspicions were not without foundation and I will try and devise some remedy. But I should not dare to ask for corrections in a thing offered to me so spontaneously and in a letter already consigned to me by the king and sealed. Accordingly I have remained up to now at a loss, seeing that it does not fit in with the requirements of the State. I hope that the trial may soon be over, please God, especially as I note some rays of light in the information you send me.
I will also pass the office committed to me with the Secretary Naunton. It is well deserved for the affection he has shown hitherto towards the republic.
As soon as possible I will try to execute the order for buying the guns, keeping well in touch with the Secretary Suriano and arranging for the best advantage of the republic, sending particulars to your Serenity of everything that I do. The Spanish ambassador, some weeks ago, had permission to take away a hundred pieces, but so far he has not bought a single one.
About the league between Spain, England and France I have nothing to add to what I have written already, and also nothing further about the Duke of Savoy.
With regard to the junction of English ships with Spanish against the pirates, it will apparently take place. They are preparing the ships, the merchants are laying out money and in the Tower they are collecting arms, powder and balls for the purpose. What actually will happen the leading ministers at this Court do not themselves know, no royal order having been issued as is customary in such cases, but only those of the Lord High Admiral and even so they are mostly verbal, as his Majesty has not yet spoken formally to the Council on the subject. Nevertheless the articles for the joint navigation are all settled already with the Spaniards, as I wrote on the 11th ult. I add the following few lines, as your Excellencies instructed me to send the most minute particulars, from which you will understand the root of the affair, and its course up to the present. This communication was made to me with the utmost secrecy and confidence by a great minister.
Three years ago the king had the idea of uniting his ships with those of the Dutch to send them against pirates, on hearing of the great damage they inflicted upon his shipping and subjects and others, with the special object and a well concerted plan to go and take Algiers. The merchants were to contribute a large sum of money for the armament, and in various ways they made great preparations for a powerful and imposing fleet. The Earl of Southampton was designated as the leader of the undertaking, and he and his relations were prepared to spend more than 100,000l. sterling for the glory of himself and his country. Two persons of proved experience and courage were sent to reconnoitre Algiers and to plan various things. Three of the wisest members of his Majesty's Council had charge of the affair. Everything was ready and almost certain to be carried out when it reached the ears of Lord Digby, the Achilles of the Spaniards at this Court and a man of great ability and sagacity. He began to tell the king that it was not reasonable that his Majesty, a friend of the Catholic king, should send his fleet to scour the coasts of the dominions of so great a monarch, and for an enterprise so near him, against an enemy who was also his own, without giving him some share in it and without joining with him instead of with the Dutch rebels, formerly his subjects, and now his open enemies; and thus by his means and by the efforts of Gondomar the ambassador, the arrangement with the Dutch fell through, the fabric of all the excellent work of the king was destroyed and the Earl of Southampton's hopes for advancement thwarted, his Majesty conceiving a suspicion of his loyalty and his aims, as it would not be safe to place such a large force so well armed in the hands of a subject with such a following and of such high rank and spirit. Accordingly nothing was done for all those years, time being lost over the new negotiations. Digby afterwards went to Spain. In the following year he represented the excellent disposition of the king there for this undertaking, writing that in Lisbon they already had twenty ships assembled for the purpose. So on this side they gave orders for the armament of a like number. But by various devices time was frittered away, it being stated in particular that Algiers had been newly fortified and consequently the undertaking would prove much more difficult and would need a greater force, and so the whole thing fell through. Thus they contrived that even here no great progress should be made with the armament, as the Spaniards feared that once made it might serve to the advantage of the republic in its differences at that time with the Duke of Ossuna. This year, however, the same idea was revived by Digby and by the Catholic Court, and they are here carrying it into effect, as I have reported before.
Many people think that this affair will follow the same course as the marriage, and that they are nothing but a show for the display of mutual confidence, whereby the king, on the one side, expects to advance this marriage, and the Spaniards, on the other side, imagine they will keep his Majesty more firmly fixed and his mind diverted from the passing events of the world while shutting him out from any glory that he might obtain against the pirates and by encouraging vain hopes in him, especially as they would never at any time be at a loss with their customary artful obstructions and pretexts, for the purpose of undoing or delaying all arrangements. (Viene dai più giudicato che questo sia un negotio che camini con l'istesso passo che ja quello del matrimonio, et che siino tutti apparenze per mostrare reciproca confidenza, con le quali da una parte questo Re stimi di avantaggiare esso maritaggio, e Spagnoli dall' altra pensino di tenere maggiormente inchiodata Sua Maestà e divertita dalli correnti affari del Mondo, con impedirle ogni gloria che potesse ottenere contra essi Corsari, e con tratenerla in spese vane mentre massime in alcun tempo non sono per mancare alla loro accortezza partiti d'impedimenti e di pretesti per disciogliere o prolongare ogni concerto.)
These same naval preparations do not displease even the supporters of Bohemia entirely, because if his Majesty, being thoroughly aware of the Spanish objects and their artifices about the marriage, should give up the idea of it, and should advance in the direction of a more open declaration in favour of his son-in-law, he would have twenty armed ships ready, which would make the Spaniards alarmed for their coasts and elsewhere, and he would join with the Dutch under the pretext of hunting pirates or something else, and this could not fail to produce momentous results, although they would rather see more rigorous medicines applied to the evil and arms and money devoted where they are more needed, and upon land rather than naval forces. The Duke of Guise has made some offer to arm ships and join these, but his offers are not expected to lead to any results as France is otherwise engaged.
London, the 2nd July, 1620.
[Italian; the words in italics deciphered.]
July 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania,
Venetian
Archives.
421. VALERIO ANTELMI, Venetian Secretary in Germany, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I hear from Augsburg, on the 26th ult., that the king of Sweden has sent ten large pieces of artillery with 500 cannon balls and a considerable sum of money to the king Palatine. From England also they expect at Prague assistance to the number of at least 8,000 foot, in conformity with the first instances and advices.
Vienna, the 4th July, 1620. Copy.
[Italian.]
July 6.
Senato,
Secreta,
Dispacci,
Savoia,
Vonetian
Archives.
422. ZUANE, PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The duke seems anxious to see the Ambassador Aerssens of the States General. He told me that on his arrival the Agent of England was to treat with his Highness, with the ambassador and also with me, but hitherto the resident has not disclosed the particulars, reserving them for the time of Aerssens's arrival. The duke said that we should answer his propositions jointly.
The resident told me in confidence that the duke seemed anxious for an alliance with the States, with the United Princes and consequently with his master, who is chief of the Union. Upon this his Majesty has instructed the Ambassador Carleton at the Hague to make the proper representations to their High Mightinesses and also to the United Princes. The resident has instructions to treat here on the arrival of the Ambassador Aerssens, and with the last despatch he received commissions from their High Mightinesses. He said it would be easy to arrange the matter if the duke had made up his mind. He told me that on that side they recommended circumspection if Aerssens brings nothing in writing, because they thoroughly understand that the Duke of Savoy wishes either to ally his daughter to Caesar or himself to the Union, or to profit by the one to obtain the other.
He spoke to me of the marriage of the Prince of Wales to the Spanish princess as a thing concluded, the dower being agreed upon; but the remaining articles contain such provisions that the Spaniards may easily fail in their promises and the king also has a door open to retreat through, but in any case months and years must pass before they could see the result or the marriage could take place.
Turin, the 6th July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
423. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The duke spoke to me about the troubles of the most serene republic at Constantinople. He said two of his sons would serve your Excellencies, Princes Filiberto and Tomaso. He hinted that Prince Tomaso, who was in Venice, might say something about a command. The agent of England also spoke to me on this subject, as if the duke desired your Serenity to employ the prince, but did not care to suggest the subject himself, waiting rather to be asked. I replied in oppropriate general terms.
Turin, the 6th July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
424. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
By letters of the 19th I have your Serenity's opinion about the negotiations with the pirates, together with the letters patent which they desired. As Pasini has gone to London to the Ambassador Lando, I could not send the patents by him. I have spoken in a friendly way, without saying that I had the patents, to the Viscount de Lormes, who is still staying here, wishing to learn what he would do if the patents arrived. He said that none of them could go to Venice to negotiate without first obtaining a security, and he did not see how the matter could be carried out except in the manner he had originally suggested. If he went to the ships without taking a guarantee with him he feared he would lose credit, as he had first approached France, then Florence, and now he had been negotiating for three months with Venice. He said, if your Serenity wished to give the matter further consideration he would rather wait two weeks longer and then have everything in his hand and go with your Serenity's deputy, who, as I have suggested, should not give the patents for absolution and safe conduct unless he finds everything as represented.
With regard to the men, there are about 3,000, mostly English and French, both sailors and soldiers, with some Dutch pilots and from five to six hundred negroes and Ethiopians, who are comprised in the total and act as servants and slaves of the captains. In religion they are partly Catholic and partly of the reformed faith.
The ships are all traders, some Portuguese and French, but mostly Dutch and English. All belong to individuals and not to princes. In conversation also I have learned that the General Estinch, the Englishman, belongs to one of the leading families and the reason for his absence from England was the suspicion of his complicity in the gunpowder plot. Their piracies were committed in the ocean except Captain Sanson who did some buccaneering in the Mediterranean. They committed their depredations upon Christian subjects of divers powers, including those of the republic, and as they usually had a retreat in the dominion of the Turks, the Viscount says that they abstained from molesting them. The wealth which they admit will amount to four or five millions and possibly even more, as they have not precisely estimated the whole. For this they claim they need give no account. The 800,000 crowns which they offer to your Serenity, with the ships, guns, weapons, etc. are not comprised in this sum, the value of which consists in the merchandise I have previously described.
The Viscount asks for a decision as soon as possible, as delay will greatly injure this affair, as on the coming of winter the greater part of the ships will withdraw to Africa and the Guinea coast and various other places, and it would be very difficult and dangerous to go and find them all. I hope your Serenity will decide soon, as your last letters bring me no decision.
The Hague, the 7th July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
425. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Ambassador Aerssens has written to the English ambassador a glowing description of his reception, and asks him to induce their High Mightinesses to show equal honour to Sig. Trivisano.
Prince Maurice has nothing good to say about the tardiness and irresolution of England. As regards the levy of Colonel Vere, he said to me with much emphasis, What is the good of 1,000 foot ? having heard that only that number would be sent as a start, and the others would follow afterwards. He told me afterwards in confidence, what your Serenity will have heard from the Ambassador Lando, that his Majesty wished to impose an oath upon Colonel Vere and his captains and officers that they would not move except to protect the Electorate. He added, We shall see if we were well informed and what we may expect. All or the greater part of the ministers there are corrupt and the king himself lulled to sleep by the offices of the Spaniards. He made the last remark with peculiar emphasis. He told me that with the English ambassador he pretended to know nothing about this.
As the company of the guards is to leave with his Excellency, and as Colonel Vere has also left, they have sent for two other companies to stay here for the security of the States.
The Hague, the 7th July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
426. To the Ambassador in England.
The office performed by you with the Secretary Naunton about Donato's transgressions of the royal commands and what you did with his Majesty himself, was very proper and opportune and meets with our entire satisfaction. We are very glad that his Majesty added that Donato must go still further away from the Court. We direct you to renew our thanks to his Majesty at a suitable opportunity, expressing our appreciation of his kindness.
Your letters call for no other answer from us except to commend your diligence in keeping us supplied with news from those parts. We may say that Mr. Pindar, his Majesty's ambassador, returning from Constantinople, arrived at Spalato, where the count immediately gave him a dwelling to pass the quarantine, and everything necessary for his person and suite, showing him every kindness. We sent instructions to give the ambassador a galley to bring him to this city. We send this for information and that you may impart it to the ministers, showing the esteem that we and our representatives feel for his Majesty, and our desire to express our friendship.
In order to continue the confidence which we profess, we desire you, when you see his Majesty to tell him that although we have heard nothing further from Constantinople about the intentions of the Grand Vizier about giving satisfaction to the Bosnians and the terms he has imposed on our Bailo, yet he continues in his ill feeling towards the republic. A Turk here, a familiar of the Pasha of Buda, writes us a letter raising difficulties about frontiers and touching upon the claims of the Bosnians, saying that he does so by express commission of the Vizier, which shows that the latter is endeavouring to trouble us in every possible way. We shall try to divert his intentions and prove our sincerity as well as the groundlessness of the claims of the Bosnians.
For your information only we may tell you that some days back the Duke of Ossuna arrived at Leghorn with six galleys and about 300 persons, comprising his household, naval and military officers and others, and a great quantity of gold. Since his departure from Naples he has gone very slowly, and he has put in at that port to give time to a courier sent on to Spain, to find him at Genoa on his return. He will stay there and wait for him, in order to learn the state of affairs at Court. He thought of going to Florence, with the purpose of remaining some days, but hearing that the serious illness of the Grand Duke would not permit him to receive him becomingly, he gave up the idea and is going to Genoa. He hopes by gold and presents to win not only the good will of the king but to obtain some important post and obtain satisfaction for the affront put upon him by Cardinal Borgia, against whom he professes open enmity and swears he will be revenged.
We have also to inform you that information has reached us of some pirate ships in the ocean, numbering twenty-two, who have grown tired of buccaneering for the space of some sixteen years and would like to enter the State of some prince, who would give them guarantees, with the intention of giving up piracy altogether and living in peace upon the sum which each one of them has been able to put aside. We hear that the proposal may be made to divers princes to make sure of being received by one of them, which they rely upon doing, and they seem more inclined to our republic than to any other power and because they desire security for their persons more than anything else. Now as we understand that many of these captains are English, we desire you, with your customary prudence and circumspection, to discover in the course of conversation, as if for yourself, and in talking to the ministers, whether his Majesty would take it in good part if some prince decided to give these men the guarantee they require and receive them into his own State, as it is almost certain they will be received by somebody, and if it will serve that kingdom, which in this way would escape the damage the men might inflict if they continued buccaneering, and if in such case they would rather they came to the most serene republic than to any one else. Although we are most averse from receiving stolen goods, yet it would be a boon to the men to enter a State and would take away any reason for further piracy, to the damage of friendly powers and common interests. We shall await paticulars from you and we particularly wish you to discover whether they are hated and detested there and anything else which you can find out upon the subject, so that if the proposal be made to us we may know how to act with due respect to the interests of that great kingdom. We send this solely for information.
The Secretary Surian at the Hague writes that upon a proposal being made to recover the lost ordnance and the ship-wrecked vessel, he referred the matter to you. We can only say that you must be guided by the nature of the proposals made and the advantages which you anticipate, and we leave it to your prudence.
Ayes, 146.Noes, 4.Neutral, 5.
[Italian.]
July 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archvies.
427. To the Count of Spalato.
The reception by you of the English ambassador who put in at your city on his return from Constantinople and your treatment of the question of quarantine was entirely in conformity with our wishes. We direct you to seize a favourable opportunity to assure the ambassador of our satisfaction at hearing of his arrival in our state in good health and our wishes for his prosperity, as we know of his efforts in our favour at Constantinople, and because of our respect for the King of Great Britain his master, with whom our republic enjoys such friendly relations, so that we always welcome any opportunity of rendering him a service.
To show our esteem, we desire you, on the expiration of the quarantine, to afford the ambassador one of our galleys to bring him to this city, and you will continue to show him every courtesy, as we will defray all the expenses which you incur. If any of our sea captains are in the neighbourhood at the time of the arrival of these presents, you will communicate this order to them in our name that we desire the ambassador to be provided with a galley to bring him to this city, entertaining him with the whole of his household. In the absence of any of the sea captains we give you power to give the same instructions to anyone who may serve in this particular, sending word to the captain at sea in command of such a galley.
That the expenses incurred by the Count of Spalato by reason of the arrival in that town of the English ambassador from Constantinople, in performance of the aforesaid orders, be defrayed by the Senate.
Ayes, 146.Noes, 4.Neutral, 6.
[Italian.]
July 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
428. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The armament of the twenty ships appears to be proceeding more slowly of late, since news has arrived from Spain that they have not really the intentions which they profess. Although the damage inflicted by pirates upon the subjects of the Catholic King are more considerable than ever, yet the designs of the Spaniards, by the selection of the ships they are preparing shows that they aim principally at taking troops to Flanders, from Spain itself, although so denuded, from Naples and from Sicily. Nevertheless this armament was not so advanced last year as it is now, and they have even begun to spend the money exacted two years ago for a tax entitled anti Pirates. It has been intimated that all the ships must be ready by the 5th August; but even with the utmost dispatch they are bound to be much later.
It now appears that the supporters of Bohemia desire the fleet to start more than the partisans of Spain. A prudent minister told me that it certainly would leave, and if it really was intended to go against the pirates it would have as an indirect object the purpose of alarming the Spaniards for their coasts and disturbing their plans of transporting troops, by means of an agreement or understanding which could easily be arranged with the Dutch, who are now keeping many ships at sea against the pirates, and also to put a restraint upon some of the Italian powers, the pope in particular, in the Mediterranean, during the present events might possibly prove advantageous, and should not, he remarked, be distasteful to the republic which last year made strong representations in favour of this affair, and though there does not now seem the same prospect of trouble in the Gulf as there did then yet we should never lose sight of the importance of the passage which the Spaniards might attempt by surprise.
The six royal ships in preparation will each carry forty five to fifty pieces of cannon. (fn. 4) They are of 600 tons each, with two towers for a single man in each. The ships of the merchants will be similar in every respect, as his Majesty wishes them to correspond in strength and cost since the principal object aimed at is obviously the interest of the merchants.
They hope that the levy for the Palatinate will be ready to leave within a fortnight. The number of gentlemen offering to serve without pay constantly increases and they expect to pass the number of 2,000, and it will consist of the flower of the people. The regiment of Gray, which has already gone, included a larger number of Scots than English and of better quality, owing to the efforts of that colonel to show more honour to those of his own nation. This incites the gentlemen here to apply themselves to this matter with greater ardour, especially as they believe, from advice sent by the Ambassador Dohna to the King of Bohemia that orders have been sent to Gray also to turn towards the Palatinate and join them. They will have an escort of cavalry from the States, who are offering all their power to secure their journey; although we hear that the States fear that in this passage they will lose a certain number of old soldiers, who wish to follow Vere. That officer wished to have a review of all the troops in London, but the king did not allow it in order to avoid such a display and not to offend the Spanish ambassador, as beyond a doubt half the kingdom would rush to it, not only the people of the immediate neighbourhood.
However the ambassador aforesaid has to swallow even greater causes of offence, as recently they have renewed the rigours against the Catholics which had been relaxed at his request, as I reported. Accordingly he recognises that he is being played with to some extent and that they are aiming here at playing his own game.
The above mentioned troops will soon be followed by 2,000 more, and if there is enough money, by as many as the King of Bohemia desires. If he does not send the orders to Gray to go to the Palatinate, he will hardly be able to do less, even if there is no great need, than levy another regiment, to do honour to Vere, so that he may not remain with so small a command. Accordingly they reckon that about 8,000 men of these realms will soon be ready for the defence of the Palatinate, a very considerable number if only it arrives in time for the need. It will be paid in the long run, however it is managed, from these parts. For this money the nobles and all the people of the provinces continue to subscribe to give so much a year even if the war should last fifty years. This is an important point because it appears that the total will amount to a considerable sum. But time, trouble and patience are needed to bring it to a successful conclusion. Thus in substance one can see what the king will do finally although deliberately and solely in a masked way.
The day before yesterday a gentleman arrived post from the Hague, from Prince Maurice. I am told that he brings letters to the king begging his Majesty to defend the Palatinate, since Spinola is now ready to take the field, and because the forces of the States, for reasons of good governance, cannot go far from their own confines in the present state of affairs. He promises, nevertheless, that they will do everything in their power and harass the enemy from the rear as much as they can (e di travagliare l'inimico alla Coda quanto potranno). I cannot yet venture to state the complete and real reasons for the mission.
On the same day arrived the Courier Riva, sent by the Spanish ambassador to the Catholic Court. Nothing further is known but it seems that the Spaniards are no longer thinking of a marriage in this quarter. In spite of this they keep up the appearance of a belief here that Lord Digby will go to Spain in September for this purpose, while the king has paid out 7,000l. sterling to him, equivalent to 28,000 crowns, and yet there is no superabundance of money here.
London, the 9th July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 9.
Senato,
Secreta,
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
429. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Sir [Henry] Wotton came to bid me farewell before leaving for his embassy, and he started yesterday He protested warmly his continued esteem and affection and the burning zeal with which he returns to your Serenity. He told me he had special instructions from the king that in the tour which he is to make through Germany he is to have a good understanding with the representatives of the most serene republic, to whom, he said, he would always impart the progress of his negotiations. From this and from other indications I have noticed one can easily perceive their intention here to keep your Serenity well disposed, and nourish your good disposition still further by the honour of confidences upon current affairs. I know that his Majesty has conversed with Wotton several times, and with other ministers remarking upon the value to the King of Bohemia of the benefits which your Serenity confers upon him by preventing the passage through the Gulf of the troops from Naples. Thus he estimated with great satisfaction that not a single soldier from that kingdom will pass by land to help the emperor, who by the expense of transport and the length of the voyage will pay for at least three soldiers, without counting the loss and suffering that they must necessarily experience by the way. Thus he recognises that few powers are doing so much for that king as your Serenity. For this Wotton will commend you and possibly offer some thanks, according to the progress of events in the world, in the name of his Majesty, as I discovered that he has express commissions to do so, as well as to assure you of the excellent disposition of the king and his spotless friendship without a trace of any ill feeling, from the first day of his reign until the present, which renders it certainly changeless for the future, and so forth.
Sir Henry told me that he has no written but only verbal instructions from the king, but possibly before he reaches Venice he may receive written ones. He is also to assure your Serenity that in every occasion, especially a rupture with the Turks or fear of it, he will declare himself and assist the republic with all his power, according to the desires and needs of your Excellencies, as his Majesty told me recently and as he has previously declared. Wotton told me, as if from himself, that in acting against the Turks, who are naturally detested by this king, there will be no need to consider the balance of power or the likelihood of offending any great princes, or disputes among the councillors with their various plans for a marriage, as is the case in the current affairs of the King of Bohemia; thus there will be no need for so many consultations, or for justifying one's cause, as a war against the Turks has always been considered most just and would be eagerly embraced by his Majesty.
But all these commissions to Wotton, which, for the rest, are no more than general and ordinary, may depend upon the events which take place before his arrival at Venice. He himself reckons that he cannot get there within three months, and then his instructions may be greatly altered according to events and the progress of current affairs.
This ambassador will not again go formally to the King of Bohemia, as the negotiations with the emperor would not give him occasion, but the two other Ambassadors, Conway and Weston will go, although their commissions have been changed, under the pretext of not getting in Wotton's way by making him go on out of the way journeys, but really, I understand, through the efforts of his opponents, who previously did not want him to go, and afterwards, when they saw that they could not prevent it, they tried to cut down and restrain his powers as much as possible.
The instructions to him and to the other ambassadors will all be directed, as I wrote, towards procuring an accommodation, to see if the affair is capable of negotiation, to stop the invasion of the Palatinate with the object of making the world recognise, by so many repeated offices, that the king has done his utmost in displaying his inclinations towards peace, and may subsequently with a good conscience, do what is expected of him for so many reasons.
By these embassies all Germany will be worked. They will be divided into two, but with the same concatenation and correspondence of negotiation, for which they are taking couriers with them to communicate with each other, and possibly they will even meet, either at Vienna or elsewhere, according as the trend of the negotiations and other accidents may decide. They cannot be called great ambassadors for their rank, but rather for their affairs. Conway and Weston have been chosen by the king not so much for their birth or efficiency, but because his Majesty feels confident that they will act punctiliously after his own fashion. The king believes that the levies of Vere's troops will give great spirit to the embassy because it will show that combined with his mildness and desire for peace there is also rigour and resolution. They will also aim in the case of other princes, such as the Dukes of Lorraine, Saxony and Bavaria, to keep them neutral, offering them the honour of a share in the accommodation. They will have in hand the wishes of the King of Bohemia, just as the French embassy is believed to have those of the emperor, but there is no hope that either the one or the other will produce the good fruit which the necessity requires, as these two crowns are now rivals, and will rather act against each other without that true zeal which is desirable in cooperation for peace. As the King of Bohemia has let it be freely understood that he will not treat with the French ambassadors or with others unless they give him the title of king, the ambassadors of his Majesty have obtained some liberty of action in this matter, I understand, and they propose as a compromise to call him the King elect of Bohemia, the word elect saving all respects.
His Majesty, however, in writing to his son-in-law, gives him no title but "my son," in French, although in beating the drums for Vere's levy he has given leave and orders to call him the most powerful and renowned King of Bohemia. The ambassadors also have instructions to encourage to the United Princes, to soothe them and render them content, assuring them that his Majesty will not fail in his duty, although he admits no obligation by the alliance, but rather by relationship, interests and affection. Wotton in particular will endeavour to tranquillise the mind of the Duke of Wirtemberg, who, they understand, is more perturbed than the others, possibly by the representations and reports of Bunynchausen, his particular minister, through whom he will conduct the greater part of the negotiations, as he is the head of the Union in Germany in the absence of the King of Bohemia.
In the letters of the 11th ult. I have received news of the encounter between the ships of your Serenity and those of Naples. I will use it as instructed. The same news has reached here in the letters of the Secretary Gregorio, and has consequently become public property. The most illustrious Nani receives great commendation and it has increased the public prestige. (fn. 5)
London, the 9th July, 1620.
[Italian.]
July 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
430. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
As Donato's verbal requests and the letters written by him that he may not be obliged to move five miles further out or leave Putney, where he now is, until September, have availed nothing, he has written the enclosed in French to the Secretary Naunton, which I have had translated into Italian. He asks for a royal passport to leave the kingdom and to see his Majesty and the Marquis of Buckingham before leaving. To the request for a passport the king replied that he will not give him royal passports; if he wishes to go, he may; and he can leave without them. He instructed Naunton, if he asks for them, to give them to him in the usual form granted to foreigners. He has received these, and I enclose a copy in English, with a translation. To the request to see his Majesty and the Lord High Admiral the Secretary replied that he did not dare to make any more requests.
Donato has not left yet. I have an inkling that he intends to go to the country of the Duke of Bouillon, to take a turn through France, and by the interposition of some prince of that kingdom to approach the Duke of Savoy and clearly prove his innocence. When he leaves, the intentions of your Excellencies will be completely fulfilled as expressed to me on the 9th November. I will not fail to observe his departure and the direction of his journey, to send word. I hope that will be the last of this business.
London, the 9th July, 1620.
[Italian.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
431. Letter of ANTONIO DONATO to the SECRETARY NAUNTON.
I dragged myself hither from the extreme confines of Europe in the confidence that I could place myself in the hands of the justice and clemency of this monarchy. Having lost my country and fortune I decided to go where God and Nature would render me safe, in the strongest part of the world, the true refuge of the afflicted. It pleased his Majesty and the Council to honour me with the royal authority. But a few months after I was forbidden to stay in the city. Accordingly I withdrew, but because I was seen in a carriage in the open country in the company of a fellow countryman, a fresh penalty has been imposed upon me. I find myself deprived of the peace and security promised me in this kingdom. Being a stranger, ignorant of the language and unfortunate, and unwilling as I am, to preserve all devotion and respect towards the most serene republic and her ministers, I have decided to remove the occasion for any further offence. Wherever I go, I shall publish abroad the virtues of this most glorious monarchy. Troubles and misfortunes will one day be rectified by God. If upon my leaving this kingdom you think it necessary for me to have a passport from his Majesty, I beg you to procure one for me, which I will await here, or I beg you to procure me some respite for the present, so that no further complaint may be levelled against me and that I may not incur fresh penalties. I should have wished to ask to receive this honour and kiss the hands of his Majesty and to visit the Lord High Admiral, who has always been very courteous towards me and to whom I am under the greatest obligations. But as I know the power of my planet I content myself by asking for this and I hope that fortune will be sated with my torments.
Putney, the 14th June, 1620.
[French.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
432. To all mayors, bailiffs, sheriffs, justices of the peace, vice-admirals, captains at sea, controllers, customers, searchers, and all other officials and subjects of his Majesty.
Whereas Signor Antonio Donato proposes to cross the sea with his Majesty's leave, we direct you to allow him with three attendants of his household to pass quietly, without let or hindrance, taking with them four trunks and other necessary baggage not forbidden by the laws of the realm, and to embark from any of his Majesty's havens as shall be most convenient for his speediest passage. You shall not fail in this, or you shall answer; and this shall be your warrant and discharge.
Dated at Whitehall, the 21st June, 1620.
[English.]

Footnotes

1 "Captain Buck, an old Scotishman that came in my company from London and in the Ambassador's out of Poland" Sir John Finett quoted in Nichols: Progresses of James I., iv. page 658.
2 Lando is very much at sea with his facts here. Pindar had only just reached Spalato on his way home (page 296 above), and after a leisurely journey he did not arrive in England till the autumn. His successor was not Silvester Ector but Sir John Eyre, appointed 1 July, 1619.
3 Oxford was twenty-seven and Essex twenty-nine.
4 The six royal ships were the Lion, Vanguard, Rainbow and Constant Reformation of 40 guns each, the Convertine with 36, and the Antelope with 34. Corbett: Eng. in the Mediterranean, i., page 114.
5 See No. 387 at page 273 above.