Venice
August 1620, 1-10

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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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342-360

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'Venice: August 1620, 1-10', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 16: 1619-1621 (1910), pp. 342-360. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88763 Date accessed: 30 September 2014.


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August 1620

Aug. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
472. To the Ambassador at Rome.
The disturbances in the Valtelline grow worse, as the rebels, assisted from Fort Fuentes and Milan have made themselves masters of the principal places. Thus there is no doubt about the Spaniards being interested, and they are trying to involve the pope, their aim being to occupy the Valtelline and close the pass. They are enlisting troops and trying to foment the disturbance.
The like to the ambassadors in Savoy and England and the Secretary Surian at the Hague, adding:
These particulars you will impart to his Highness (his Majesty or the States), accompanied by the most forcible representations, so that all may recognise the gravity of the question.
The first paragraph also to Spain, Germany and Florence.
Ayes, 109.Noes, 0.Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 6.
Senato,
Terra.
Venetian
Archives.
473. Whereas Colonel Peyton has in his possession 150 cuirasses more than he needs, as practically all his men are armed with muskets, that the Proveditori and Patrons of the Arsenal be instructed to take them for what they think they are worth, the amount to be set off against his debt.
Ayes, 144.Noes, 1.Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Aug. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Zara.
Venetian
Archives.
474. ALVISE ZORZI, Proveditore of Zara, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The money has not yet arrived to pay the troops of the garrison here, including the English of Colonel Peyton. I again tried to raise loans to satisfy them but could not obtain anything. The troops kept importuning me, as they do not know how to maintain themselves. I beseech your Excellencies not to allow the interests of your service to suffer by longer delay.
Zara, the 1st August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia
Venetian
Archives.
475. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The resident of England has spoken to me with great feeling about the unfortunate events in the Grisons, and I know that he has made proper representations to the duke in the interests of the general liberty. He says openly that the loss of those people means the fall of Italy, that nothing further can be hoped from the Helvetians, and those people who stand in the centre of Europe to serve the interests of all must of main force obey the enemies of liberty, from whom a universal dominion is preparing. It might be hoped that the accidents of Germany would take Italy from the Spaniards, but if the progress against the Grisons continues, both Germany and Italy will fall to the Spaniards. He remarked with genuine sorrow how all the Alpine nations were passing through fire and sword, and need either powerful succour or a diversion. If the Bergamesque gate is closed against your Serenity there only remains the way to Germany by Trent.
He told me that the Bernese and Zurichers will certainly move, and the Valesani are alive to the need of preserving their independence and supporting the Grisons. He added that he found the duke very well disposed in the public cause, and if he did not do what was right he would lose his friends and himself also; but to make sure of him it was necessary to advance proposals that he could not refuse or which would force him to declare his intentions, to put an end to all ambiguity about his negotiations with the Spaniards.
The resident's secretary has recently been sent post to Berne, I understand with some important considerations upon the public service. On his return I hope to discover all about it. He has also to impart many particulars if he falls in with the Ambassador Aerssens, especially to warn him of some plots discovered against his life.
The Bailif, supreme head of the Valesani and colonel of their regiment, is here. The English resident has asked the duke to send him so that he may put a stop to some practices of the Spaniards discovered among the Valesani, and he promised to do so without delay, but the colonel is waiting for some money, due to him, which the duke promises to pay at the earliest opportunity.
Turin, the 2nd August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
476. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The duke has had a long conference with the Resident of England upon current affairs. Subsequently the resident came to see me. He told me that the duke considered the affair of the Valtelline disastrous, and wondered what he could do to help. He considered that the Spaniards were occupied and disarmed in Italy, while the French, taken up with their civil commotions, could do little good here. Such an opportunity might not occur again, and if the most serene republic liked, he was ready for anything.
He told me that the duke imparted what I said, your Excellencies confined yourselves to general terms and could come to no satisfactory decision. He told me that the duke would spare no pains or expense and had made him promise to write all the particulars to the King of Great Britain.
He told me further that the duke is bound to act, as besides the damage in Italy he would feel the fire in Savoy, but that it is necessary to prove him.
They take some consolation here in believing that they are only reforming the government of the Grisons in order to establish its liberty, but the resident said he had persuaded the duke that it meant the loss of the Grisons and Valesani both, and he must accept the new state of affairs and look to his own interests.
The duke has asked the resident of England to write to Berne promising that he will not give help to the Catholic Cantons, and informing them of the requests made to him by the Catholics. He says he is getting the resident to write, as having more credit in the representations; nothing will be sent to Zurich as there is no alliance. The resident told me that any representation will come late, as now they must be fighting. It is just as well, as he hopes the forces of the Bernese will overcome the others. He added that the matter was not one for negotiation. Negotiations would simply establish the Spanairds in the Valtelline, and any attempt to reform the government, as the talk of doing, will lose everything. Force and decision were needed.
I replied that high speaking and resolute action on the part of his king would do great good. The ills of Italy are inseparable from the well being of the other princes who maintain liberty and the public welfare.
Turin, the 3rd August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
477. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The secretary of the English resident has returned without fulfilling the purpose for which he was sent, as the Ambassador of the States took another route, and he heard he was at Basel. I enclose the letter written by the Resident Wake to the ambassador, which the secretary has brought back with him. He was sent because the duke seemed offended that he had not come this way and anxious to negotiate for a union, and complaining that he had not executed his commissions. He said the dangers had been foreseen before he left the Hague, and should not have prevented him from obeying his masters, and he changed his mind at Venice. The resident modestly remarked to me that if the duke had said the advice was ours, it was not our business to affirm it, and I find there is some discord, but this minister has every confidence in the sincerity and goodness of your Excellencies.
The English secretary brings word that the Bernese will move on the 28th to help the Grisons, and the Zurichers also, though the latter showed some reluctance. He told me that the Catholic Cantons have fortified themselves in the passes, and hitherto that is the only way they are helping.
Turin, the 3rd August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
478. To M. AERSSENS, Ambassador Extraordinary to Venice from the States General of the United Provinces of the Low Countries.
I am sending you my secretary by special command of the Duke of Savoy to express his regret that you have changed your purpose of coming from Venice to Turin. The duke would have given you the best possible reception, and desired the opportunity of showing your masters his wish to return past favours. His ambassador at Venice has sent word of what you said about the desire of your masters for a league with this prince for the defence of the common liberty. His Highness wished to speak with you on the subject, being greatly desirous of such a thing, as he showed by his requests to my king.
His Highness desires me to ask you to thank your masters for the good will they have shown and for the help they have given him and say that he will always be ready to make a return when necessary.
In the second place you will be glad to know that the intentions of the prince are really those which he has notified to my sovereign, and he wishes to secure his dominions and his house by a close understanding with those powers which aim at the preservation of the general liberty and dignity. M. Carleton has been charged to speak with his Excellency and the States on this question, and I am daily expecting their reply to him in order to set the affair on foot with the Duke of Savoy. If you will favour me with your commands upon the matter I will rule myself by them.
My secretary, John Jacob, will tell you anything else. I ask you to give him your complete confidence. ISAAC WAKE.
Turin, the 11th July, 1620, new style.
[French.]
Aug. 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
479. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The 2,000 English arrived at Dort yesterday. They will proceed to Emmerich and Rees and await further instructions, observing Spinola's movements, so that they may travel the more safely. General Vere arrived at the Hague yesterday. He visited his Excellency yesterday and will leave on the arrival of the first advices.
They have decided to arm twenty-three ships against the pirates. The ships will not be able to sail before next October. This subject gave me the opportunity to speak to his Excellency about the proposed reception of pirates by your Serenity, in order to discover what he thought about it. Apparently he would not object, but I could get nothing definite from him except an expression of the fear of being deceived and that the pirates might break their word. I heard the same from others also, and further that the captains of the ships of war have instructions to offer the inducement of pardon to the pirates.
The Hague, the 4th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
480. To the Ambassador in England.
With regard to the Valtelline, its rebels continue to progress, assisted by Spain. The Grisons, to protect their country have assembled 24 bands of Chiavenna, seven of which have taken possession of la Trincere, driving out the rebels with loss. They have since taken Traona and approached Morbegno. Another band of the Grisons has entered the Valtelline without encountering any resistance and they have taken Sondrio, an important place. The operations of the Grisons are distasteful to the Spaniards, chiefly because they want the Valtelline themselves, and they are proposing to give the Grison bands a more open declaration of their intentions in the matter.
We send you these particulars to impart to his Majesty, drawing attention to the unjust aims of the Spaniards, whose chief object is no longer doubtful, so that all princes should join to prevent their pernicious designs, to maintain the common liberty. We are sure that his Majesty will take all this into consideration with his customary prudence and his desire for the quiet of Italy.
From your last letter we perceive your diligent application upon the affairs of the ordnance for the States and the difficulties in the way of asking his Majesty. We direct you to abstain from making the request if you know that it will not succeed, and in such case to send word to the Secretary Surian, so that he may satisfy the States with money, as we are instructing him to do.
The like to the Secretary Surian at the Hague, mutatis mutandis, with the following, instead of the last paragraph:
Our Ambassador Lando in England expresses his misgivings about encountering difficulties in the matter of the ordnance. We have instructed him not to make the request if he finds his Majesty disinclined, and in such case, according to the advices which you receive from him, you will satisfy the States with money, as the matter cannot be settled in any other way.
Our Ambassador Trivisano is ready and will leave early next week. Owing to the commotions in the Grisons, he has had to choose another route.
Ayes, 95.Noes, 2.Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Aug. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
481. To the Ambassador in England.
This week we have received with your letters of the 19th the letter you have obtained from his Majesty for the Turk about the trading galleys. We desire you to thank his Majesty warmly in our name, saying that his action has increased our obligation to the greatest extent and most disposed us to show our gratitude to the extent of our powers.
You will add, as a sign of our confidence in his Majesty in all occurrences, that this affair has taken a fresh turn at Constantinople, and it may easily happen that there will be no necessity to present the letter, which we will keep by us in the meantime, until the entire completion of the matter; that the consent of our Bailo to give some satisfaction to the Bosnians through our merchants seems to have removed any reason for further trouble or a breach with the Turks. As circumstances have occurred in this connection very damaging to our service and to the dignity what the republic habitually shows in its diplomatic relations, we are compelled to seek every means for providing a remedy, so that we may be satisfactorily delivered from such troubles.
Ayes, 95.Noes, 2.Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
Aug. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
482. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
When the Spanish ambassador perceived that it did not suffice to say that the fleet of his king to unite with the one being prepared here, could not be ready so soon, and that to bring about the abandonment of this armament, as had happened in past years, it was not enough to say that they could not unite this year, and that not only did he not reach his object in putting a stop to the intention of sending them forth, but was even accelerating this purpose and causing the fleet to be made stronger, he altered his language and began to say that very soon the Spaniards would have not only twenty but thirty ships ready for the purpose. He frequently speaks on the subject, holding frequent discussions and consultations with the General Mansfilt, cultivating his friendship to the best of his powers. He has instructions from Spain that if he sees this fleet will be prepared, and that the king here, no matter how, is supplying men and money to the Palatine and Bohemia and has excited the Low Countries to succour the Palatine he must stand on his guard and observe very closely every proceeding. It clearly appears therefore from what we hear from that Court that they are very anxious, both for Flanders and for Spain itself, as under this king so many royal ships have never started for such a long voyage, and so considerable an armament has never been seen, as the ships will take 3,600 men, all of whom will discharge the double duty of sailors and soldiers, and the ships are well armed and well provided with everything. (Comprendendosi et intendendosi da quello Corte che si sia grandemente ingelosita, e per la Fiandra e per la Spagna istessa; mentre mai piu Navi reggie sotto questo Re saranno sortite per andare tant' oltre, ne si sara piu veduto un armamento considerabile tanto 3,600 huomini dovendo contenere le Navi, che tutti faranno l'ufficio di Marinari e di soldati insieme, ben armate e ben provedute di tutte le cose.)
The other day they gave Mansfilt his instructions, with the intention, so far as one can discover up to the present, of attacking Algiers and Tunis, to devastate those coasts as much as possible, and to hang about those positions and districts, whereby they hope to destroy the pirates, depriving them of their retreats and of the means of revictualling. They think that as events may turn out, the General will be followed by other instructions and that he may not leave without the addition of some further orders. The king himself proposes to review the entire fleet at the Isle of Wight towards the end of the present month, and the Lord High Admiral, the favourite, is working hard so that it may afford a fine display. (fn. 1) Three other royal ships are now being sheathed. They will serve to succour and administer necessities to the others and to strengthen the force if it appears that they propose to keep the sea for any length of time. It seems that the States are considering the advisability of publicly joining their forces with this fleet against the pirates, in addition to other objects which they may have. Whether openly or covertly they will act in concert with his Majesty, according to what a leading minister told me. He added laughing: The king my master will act as mediator to bring together the Spaniards and the Dutch for such a laudable purpose.
The Dutch propose to make a fresh request here for permission to take away 300 pieces of ordnance, 100 being already made and purchased on their behalf. They have approached several of the ministers here, but have been advised not to present their request to his Majesty yet; they will await a better opportunity. I am sure that whatever may be the time they will encounter difficulties for the reasons I have already given, especially just now owing to the envy excited by the news of the arrival at Amsterdam of three ships from the East Indies with a cargo worth three millions of gold. Possibly however they may obtain it with the course of time and by importunity. That would be the moment to give effect to the desires of your Excellencies.
Vere's soldiers will leave very soon. They think that they may be at Dort at this moment. They form the finest regiment that has left this kingdom for many a year, but it cost a great deal both for the levy and the transport. The two companies of the earls of Oxford and Essex were recruited and brought to the place of embarcation at their own expense.
Burlamacchi remitted 400,000 florins last week to Nurenberg for the King of Bohemia. This will constitute the assistance from this kingdom, where the collection of money has turned out better than was expected, notwithstanding stumbling blocks and obstacles studiously and insidiously fabricated and disseminated.
The agreement of the Princes of Germany omong themselves has been confirmed and gives great satisfaction here, as they hope that the Palatine will now be safe. Accordingly it seems that for the cause and because they understand that the United Princes are in a satisfactory position, they no longer think so much of levying the 2,000 other soldiers here, written about before. However they have not entirely given up the idea, and they give Vere hopes for his honour's sake. But really they propose to send money rather than men unless the necessity becomes different from present appearances.
The Ambassadors Cornuals and Vueston have arrived at Brussels, but we do not hear whether they have yet had audience, his Highness being absent from the city. (fn. 2) There is no news of Sir [Henry] Wotton. The Spanish ambassador in referring, with his usual terms of familiarity with his Majesty, to the French embassy in Germany, said, the emperor will never make peace without the king my master, who will never agree to one without your Majesty.
The French ambassador having had an express courier has gone after the king in progress to inform him about the affairs of that kingdom, which become ever more fervid and ardent. His Majesty says quite freely that the king there ought not to be so hard in his thoughts for a favourite (che quel Re non doverebb esser cosi duro nei suoi pensieri per un favorite). It is thought that he will propose to send an embassy for the accomodation. But the disturbance in that kingdom does not really distress them here in the least.
They speak a great deal of the Duke of Savoy, saying that he is at one with the queen mother, and the Ambassador Gaballeoni here in conversation with his Majesty the other day said that his master had married Prince Vittorio to a daughter of the Queen of France and a sister of the king, not of Luynes.
The letter referring to a plot against the prince's life which I reported last week, was brought to Court by a lady who professed to have found it in the street. When asked if there were witnesses by when she found it, she named one whom she believed to be no longer in the kingdom and so could not bear testimony. However, he had not yet started. When called and examined he said he knew nothing about it, though he admitted he had been with the lady that night, who is a person of no birth, at the time she said, and in that street. He added that he had her on his arm, that being the custom here, and they were walking together. Accordingly if she had stooped to pick up anything he was bound to have noticed it. This did not happen. Suspicion being aroused by this they asked the lady if she could write. At first she said no, but on being pressed she wrote her name, in practically identical characters with those of the letter. The fraud being thus discovered, she was sent to prison to discover the root of the matter. But it is perfectly clear that it was simply a device to cast suspicion upon the King and Queen of Bohemia, to make them hateful in the kingdom, to his Majesty and the Prince, because the letter names as the person making the plot a servant of Madam Harinton, recently deceased, who was governess of the Queen of Bohemia and mother of Madam Betfort, a very leading and proud spirit. (fn. 3) These particulars are for the most part kept very secret.
Your Serenity's letters of the 9th July reached me this week. I will execute the commissions with his Majesty at the first opportunity. With regard to the particulars about the pirates I have begun to collect them, and next week I hope to send your Excellencies the information which you desire.
The diver has been to me, who spoke to the Secretary Surian at the Hague about the artillery wrecked in the ship Santa Giustina. I shall be guided in my conduct by the proposals he makes, and the advantages which may accrue.
I have already informed some of the ministers here of the orders sent by your Excellencies to Spalato to honour and entertain the Ambassador Pindar. This has given great satisfaction, and such demonstrations always produce good results.
I must not forget to inform your Serenity that some days ago Viscount Porbeck, brother of the Lord High Admiral Buckingham, his Majesty's favourite, left here to go to the baths of Spa in Flanders, with his wife and some other ladies. The Countess of Arundel has also left for the same place. I hear that the viscount wishes to go on to Italy and to Venice out of curiosity, and the countess to go to Padua to see her sons. It would be advantageous to show appropriate honour to the former, not so much for himself but for the sake of his brother upon whom fair fortune continues to shine so benignantly. The latter is well known to your Excellencies. I will content myself with notifying this much because I have not been able to discover with absolute certainty what were their intentions, and possibly their own minds were not completely made up before their departure.
London, the 6th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
483. To the Ambassador in Savoy.
You will commend the duke's resolution in favour of the common liberty, and tell him of the success of the bands of the Grisons, and that we shall assist them. We are sure that his Highness will remonstrate with the Spaniards and persuade the Catholic Swiss, his allies, not to help them.
You will speak to the Resident of England, praising his opinions in the matter and inciting him to write to his king efficaciously, communicating what we are doing, so that he may recognise how much we have these affairs at heart.
Ayes, 112.Noes, 1.Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
484. ALMORO NANI, Venetian Ambassador in Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I have already executed the commands of your Serenity in thanking the ambassadors of England and Flanders. They seemed pleased and expressed their readiness to serve your Serenity always. I will also thank France when I have an opportunity.
Gallo, the Imperial ambassador, made his entry on the 2nd inst. with very few people. The French ambassador sent to meet him, but not England or Flanders, the latter owing to his quarrel with the preceding ambassador. England pretended that it was not the custom of his king to use this ceremony, as it was not used towards them, since the English ambassadors always arrived by sea. This pretext, however, is false, as his predecessors adopted a different style, and he himself came by land, not by sea. But the truth is he did not want to go to meet him owing to the dispute about precedence with France. However he sent his secretary to the ambassador's house to mollify any ill feeling that might have been caused.
In this connection I may observe that the Ambassadors of England and Flanders have been together to the Pasha to incite him to favour the interests of the King of Bohemia and those of Hungary. When they came out of his apartments they met the Imperial ambassador, who was waiting outside for audience. The English ambassador saluted him, but Flanders pretended not to see him.
Three days ago the English ambassador called upon me and begged me to tell him when the Ambassador Giustinian would arrive here, as he wished to send his secretary immediately, with his compliments. He made apologies for not sending to meet him, as he did not wish to act differently from the course he had pursued with the Imperial ambassador. I replied that his excellent disposition towards your Serenity and this house counted for more than any outward demonstration.
The old Imperial ambassador has not yet left. The letters from the Sultan to his master did not satisfy him, as they had removed the title of King of Bohemia. He tried to have this rectified, but I do not think he will succeed, as the English ambassador told me that the Vizier does not mean to alter them, because after the Palatine was elected he wrote letters to the Sultan, who replied giving him the title of King of Bohemia, so they do not think it would be proper to give it afterwards to the emperor.
The Vigne of Pera, the 9th August, 1620.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Aug. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Zara.
Venetian
Archives.
485. ALVISE ZORZI, Proveditore of Zara, to the DOGE and SENATE.
During the whole time that the English troops of Colonel Peyton have remained here, Captain Thomas Lathum, who remained in charge in the colonel's absence has shown such assiduity and diligence and maintained such good discipline among his men, that I should wrong him if I did not bear witness to my great satisfaction with his services now he is leaving by command of your Serenity. Owing to the diligence of the captains these troops are in an excellent state of discipline and ready for service. I have been particularly pleased with the musters, which have taken place without any attempt at fraud or ill feeling, when so often the pretext of sickness or so forth is advanced to gain some advantage.
Zara, the 9th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Zara.
Venetian
Archives.
486. ALVISE ZORZI, Proveditore of Zara, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Your Serenity's instructions of the 28th reached me on the 5th inst. after the trading galleys had already left for Venice, so I could not send the men of Colonel Peyton's regiment by them. As you required haste, I put them at once on two of the frigates here, and sent them towards the Lido, escorted by four armed barques. They number 176, the remainder being in the east on the fleet, in accordance with the public commands. Both they and the others here have been paid until the 3rd inst. In addition to their pay the captains asked me for some money for their voyage to pay the troops and discharge their debts in this town. With great difficulty I raised a loan and paid them 1,240 ducats. I beg you to send that sum here together with the rest as early as possible. I selected four armed barques of the Albanian nation to accompany the captains to Venice.
Zara, the 9th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
487. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The mart here is greatly disturbed with the news that arrived the other day, that the Dutch in the East Indies have engaged two other English ships, the largest there, sinking one and burning the other in the heat of the fight, and that five other English ships have been burned by their own captains for lack of force to defend themselves, so that they might not fall a prey to the Dutch. (fn. 4) They assert that the loss will amount to three millions of gold, in addition to the death of a large number of men, including the admiral and the chief factor of the company of merchants. This blow has embittered the feelings of all and it is bound to produce a very great effect upon the king also. Accordingly they believe that the attempts of the States in these parts will be entirely thrown out of joint, and for the moment cold water will be thrown upon all thoughts they might have cherished here of joining with them, with so much profit and advantage in opposition to all the plans of the Spaniards. Nevertheless they say freely here that their ships to the number of thirty ought to enter the Mediterranean, and one of the ministers suggested to me that then the designs would be disclosed which are not as yet matured.
Some letters of the Ambassador Carleton from the Hague, sent expressly to his Majesty, were lost in the wreck of a ship on the coasts of Flanders. They have been fished up and sent to Brussels. They relate the preparations of the States both by sea and land, their desire to unite with the forces of these parts, the accommodation arranged by the interposition of his Majesty with the King of Denmark, the excellent disposition of the latter in current affairs, and the readiness of the States, greater than they have shown before, to make a league with the Duke of Savoy. (fn. 5) With regard to this proposal his Majesty has passed fresh offices quite recently, and the duke seems more disposed towards it than ever. He made excuses and lamented bitterly to the English agent Wake that his ambassador at Venice had not called upon Aerssens, saying that he had sent him orders to do so, and that he had reproved him severely. Accordingly they think here that the States will not neglect to make a suitable response, either by sending Aerssens again, who owing to instructions already received is returning by another route than that of Piedmont, after he has got back to the Hague, or in some other way. A person of importance told me that the duke has conceived some suspicion that your Excellencies would not be pleased to see him allied with the States, and that some ill office was performed with Aerssens at Venice.
The Ambassador Carleton has sent a letter here with news from Constantinople, saying that the Ambassador of the States at the Porte writes to his masters representing the fury and the barbarous threats of the Grand Vizier, and the affairs of your Serenity in the most lugubrious terms. Advices subsequently reached the Court that everything had been settled by means of the merchants. They have questioned me somewhat on the subject, but I could only reply with the information supplied to me by your Excellencies.
As your Serenity will have learned from the Hague they have intercepted letters of the emperor and of ministers, from which they have discovered the design that Spinola is to attack the Palatinate and Germany. They are to a large extent in cipher. The States, not having any one of much skill in deciphering, proposed to hand them over to the Ambassador Carleton, to send them here to be deciphered. He however modestly declined, and accordingly their High Mightinesses have sent them to M. Caron, their ambassador.
At Brussels the ambassadors of his Majesty have had audience of his Highness. They received a most general reply, to much the same effect as the one given to the Agent Trumbull, which I reported, namely that they must not think it strange that one so closely allied in blood to the emperor should assist his interests, and without making the slightest reference to the Palatinate, The ambassadors have repeatedly insisted upon this point, again and again mentioning the Palatinate by name, and asserting that his Majesty cannot abandon it or allow it to fall.
Their negotiations have been referred to some of the ministers, but they delay their reply. If the ambassadors do not receive an answer in two days, they think of leaving without waiting any longer.
The remittance of 400,000 florins to Nurenberg made by Burlamacchi, as I wrote last week, is not free, but must be paid according to the way in which they manage to levy it here.
A gentleman has arrived from France with letters sent by the Duke of Guise to offer to his Majesty here for the prince as a wife the sister of the Most Christian. (fn. 6) They have answered him in general terms, simply expressing the esteem which they have for that Crown, and referring to what his Majesty said by word of mouth to this gentleman, though everything was general and most superficial, as here they do not wish to treat with a person of such low condition as this person whom they have sent. They have given him a gold chain, but will not enter upon any formal negotiations before they have broken off with Spain. That affair continues to progress slowly, but this only seems to render the conclusion of the match more desirable to the king, who is more infatuated over it than ever. The Spanish ambassador suggests that the king his master and the pope both desire to see first what course the present war takes, and this makes his Majesty desire peace more than ever, and takes him still further from any idea of nourishing and fomenting the war in the interests of his allies.
Basso the courier reached me in the middle of last night with your Serenity's despatch upon the most important events in the Valtelline. He says that he was detained at Milan for seventeen hours, the governor wishing first to send one of his own to Spain, fearing that he might go in that direction. Without losing time I sent at once to ask for audience of the king, who is a hundred miles away, (fn. 7) and this morning, after writing this despatch, I decided to go to see him in order to carry out the commissions of your Excellencies. But I fear that I shall not meet with an opportunity of making a great impression while his Majesty is so complacent, together with the most confidential persons at his side, in giving ear to the Spanish ambassador, and far away from those ministers who have a right understanding of such affairs (ma dubbito di non incontrare congiontura propria per fare afetto grande, mentre tanto è indolcita Sua Maestà nel dare orecchie con li più confidenti che le sono a canto a questo Ambasciator di Spagna e lontana da quei Ministri che ben intendono simili affari).
London, the 10th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
488. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Pasini, together with the viscount de Lormes sent by the Secretary Surian to take information whether the pirates, for whom the proposal has been made, are off the coasts of this kingdom, and to proceed to find them according to the advices they receive, has communicated to me the commissions which he holds and all the particulars of this affair. I will not fail either of them, in supplying every assistance and favour. In virtue of what the Secretary Surian wrote I have paid 22l. sterling to Pasini to make this journey. I have gathered in substance from them that the viscount fears, because too much time has been lost, that they will not find them any longer in these parts, but he hopes they have left some person or some instructions behind. If they are not here they will have gone to Barbary, a long voyage which can only be made at a heavy expense. This will be the greater, not on Pasini's account alone, who is very zealous, and certain to make himself respected and serve your Serenity well, so far as I have perceived hitherto, and who is anxious to economise as much as possible in travelling expenses and other occasions, for he has served a great deal both the republic and her representatives, but of the viscount also, without whom he cannot go, and who claims to travel at the public cost, and who expects to be very well treated everywhere. As it does not concern me to speak of all this or to decide anything, I have written to the Secretary Surian so that he may answer what he thinks fit.
The viscount complains bitterly of the delay that has ensued, although he told me that the pirates would be of the same mind next year as this, and for three years more, if they can maintain themselves for so long. He would like a general patent for all. He says that mandates for two or three only would not produce any effect except in a most superficial way as showing some inclination on the part of your Serenity, since it is not possible that two or three alone should decide to come to Venice, and even if they consented they could only come at extreme peril, since at sea they would have the fear of the fleet of his Majesty here and other Christian princes, and by land they would pass through constant dangers.
I well understand the object of your Excellencies to have the information desired, and the commission to me to gain time, to receive the proposals favourably and all the things which surround this important proposal, and I have endeavoured to give the viscount a good impression of the inclinations of the most serene republic, and the reasons which she has as a prudent power and a punctilious observer of her promises, to walk very circumspectly in an affair of such moment, with the object of keeping the negotiations alive as well as to keep him true, although to me he seemed very tired at the length of the negotiations.
He has left with Pasini for Ireland. On his return I shall hear and report what has happened. In a suitably circumspect manner in the course of conversation, I have sounded some of the ministers here, as your Serenity directed, to discover what his Majesty would think and feel upon the subject. From two in particular, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Secretary Naunton, who are the leading men in the Council, I have gathered the following particulars. The first instance of rehabilitating pirates was that of Henry IV of France, when he gave assurances to Danser the Fleming. Afterwards the Duke of Savoy imitated him, by receiving the pirate Eston into his dominions and even conferring upon him various titles, although he was a man of low birth; but this was a blameworthy proceeding to obtain money. Subsequently his Majesty here, although with the best intentions to clear the sea of piracy and to deliver his subjects from harm, at the request of many of the leading nobles of this kingdom consented to grant a pardon to Sir [Henry] Mainwaring, his subject, a man of very good birth, but upon condition that he should arrange with the interested parties for the damage inflicted. At the same time they issued a general pardon to all those who went buccaneering with him, if they would quietly return to the realm, upon the same condition. For a long while after his return Mainwaring was harassed by the Spanish ambassador with claims for redress to the subjects of the Catholic King, but finally, fearing that he would return to piracy, and seeing that he had nothing to pay, and thinking that by desisting he would gain a great deal by giving satisfaction to him and to his numerous relations, while he would acquire thereby the benevolence of some of the magnates, he gave over. The captains and people who came in at that time have remained, one may say, in a wretched condition.
Naunton further gave me a detailed account of the negotiations recently carried on in France by these same pirates, and that they fell through because Luynes intended to make a huge jest of them. He told me that he had seen the patents of that king, because a certain Viscount Francesco, undoubtedly this very de Lormes, although I avoided the danger of exciting suspicion by asking anything about the name, negotiated with these parts from Brussels six months ago, offering that the pirates in large numbers should have recourse to the protection of his Majesty, receiving a pardon, to live quietly, bringing a large sum of money to make a gift to his Majesty and ministers, and arms and ships, in fact the very same proposals as those made to your Serenity. The king would on no account agree to this, as he naturally detests such people exceedingly, and at that time he hoped that he would extirpate them with the fleet which he was preparing. He also feared that if he received them he would encourage as many more to go buccaneering. He said that this accursed plague introduced by Queen Elizabeth by permitting piracy to her subjects, is even now too deeply rooted among this people, and almost all his subjects who went to serve other princes, and especially the Grand Duke, have become pirates. His concession to Sir [Henry] Mainwaring was upon the condition aforesaid, and also because he had committed no great wrong, but he recognised afterwards that even this had produced a bad effect through the bad example, so that it had not only induced many others to take to buccaneering, but divers of those who returned with him had gone back to that infamous profession. (A che il Re non ha voluto in alcun modo assentire, odiando simili genti per natura in estremo, sperando specialmente in questo tempo con l'armata che prepara di estirparle, dubbitando anche ricevendole d'invitarne altretanti ad andare in corso, dicendo che la maledetta peste introdotta dalla Regina Elisabetta con permettere la piratia alli suoi sudditi, resta troppo radicata anchora in questi populi, che quasi tutti li suoi sudditi andeti al servitio di altri Principi et principalmente del Gran Duca, sono divenuti Pirati; che quello ch'egli concesse al Cavalier Magnaringh fu con la conditione sudetta, e per che non haveva commesso neanche gran male, ma che ha conosciuto poi che anche quello ha prodotto cattivo efetto per il mal esempio, onde non solo siino restati invitat molti altri a mettersi al corso, ma delli ritornati con lui diversi pure siino ritornati a quella infame professione.)
General Mansfeld of the fleet has received express instructions to hang without mercy all the English pirates who fall into his hands, though he has no orders to treat those of other nations in this manner, as besides other reasons it appears that English pirates for some time past have been in the habit of putting to death or drowning in the sea all the English whom they took.
He further told me that these pirates have also negotiated with the King of Poland to be received. That king wrote to his Majesty to learn what he thought about it. His Majesty replied that he would like to have more exact particulars, and what they proposed to do with them, if he proposed to employ them against another prince or in any other way, but showing that it would not please him whatever was done. Poland had not made any further reply whatsoever. In conclusion he told me clearly that his Majesty would not hear that they had been received by any prince with anything but dissatisfaction.
From what I learned from the Archbishop this affair would appear good and praiseworthy to him personally, always provided that the persons injured received some satisfaction, and that the pirates really retired from buccaneering without any intention of returning to it, and should disarm, and that the prince who receives them should not display a greed for money, but a desire to secure the general welfare. He did not venture however to tell me what the feelings of the king might really be. Naunton on the other hand expressed this to me openly. From what he disclosed in the course of his conversation, in only one case might the bitter be sweetened for his Majesty, namely in case some prince, in urgent need and in the interests of Christendom should think of using against the Turk, if not the pirates, their ships and arms, having recourse to the same terms suggested by the archbishop, and that they spoke or wrote to his Majesty about the matter with perfect frankness.
With regard to the particular conditions of these pirates, few English of any birth are numbered among those now scouring the seas. The younger sons here, as opposed to the first born, being deprived of property by the laws of the realm, have taken to the profession from necessity and an evil disposition, and but few of the nobles, who are quite as luxurious here as in any other part of the world soever, are at present accustomed to take up the profession of the sea, or have experience of it, (questi cadetti, che come non primi geniti, privi per le leggi del Regno di robba, per bisogni et per mala natura si sono dafi alla professione, pochi delli nobili, ben morbidi in queste parti di qualsisia altra del Mondo, solendosi applicare hora alla professione del mare et havendo esperienza).
The rest, to which category belong all those by whom this proposal has been made to your Serenity, are of the lowest condition by birth, sailors, the seed for the most part left over from the sowing of Queen Elizabeth aforesaid, all rogues together, with very little distinction though very courageous. They have done harm to all they could reach, one may say to all the world and all the nations. It is thought that some of them are actually very rich, and being tired of a long course of buccaneering and at this time more than any other fearful of being undone or severely harassed by the Christian fleets, they really desire to enjoy their gains in peace and security.
General Estinh the leader, is the son of a ship master named Rivens of the time of Queen Elizabeth, this is the one who after a fight with the Spaniards which he lost, rather than fall into their hands, fired the powder magazine and perished with all his men. Captain Lambert of Lubeck, a Fleming, is the son of a great captain of Rotterdam, who is a fierce persecutor of the pirates, named Peter Lambert. It is not known whether Elis is the man who was put to death here in this kingdom six weeks ago, there being two pirates of the same name. Blach, I understand, was also hanged here a month ago. They frequently venture into the nets, landing in the kingdom and going to see their wives or other relations, believing that they will not be recognised. Some think that Captain John Pin was slain not long ago in a fight with an English ship; others say he was only wounded. I am also told that Mandoch and Sanson have become Turks. This is all that I have been able to discover so far, as I did not think that an open and unreserved enquiry would be advisable. It would be a very important consideration if some of them had been involved in the Gunpowder Plot against his Majesty, as the Viscount de Lormes told me, such as the General, Captain Elis and some others. But the information which I have been able to procure does not confirm this; in fact I have been told it is certainly not the case. Accordingly I believe that he probably said so in order to make me believe their condition to be superior and of greater estimation, not perceiving the difficulties.
With regard to the mass of the populace, which has acquired such wealth by privateering, and among the common people in particular, they are not in ill repute. On various occasions and in Ireland especially they have been accustomed to have a place of refuge for some weeks and even months from those who ruled the kingdom, and the Lords High Admiral and the favourites have occasionally received presents to obtain shelter and safety for them. In the time of the favourite Somerset in particular, something of this sort took place, possibly not without the knowledge and consent of his Majesty himself. If the fleet now about to start does not produce the results they expect, I do not think that they have any intention here of receiving them, through presents promised by these pirates to the ministers, or to embrace their proposals after some lapse of time and with a better opportunity, and that therefore some would not like to see them taken under the protection of other princes. (Quanto all universale del Regno, che tanto si ha arrichito per le corse, e del popolo in particolare, non sono in mal concetto. Sono stati soliti alcune volte in Irlanda specialmente di havere ricapito per qualche settimana et per qualche mese anchora da quelli che hanno governato il Regno e li Gran Armiragli e li favoriti tal volta hanno ricevuto de donativi per farli ricovrare et assicurare. Al tempo del favorito Somerset specialmente alcuna cosa in questo proposito essendo successa, non senza notitia et assenso fors' anche di Sua Maestà Non credo che qui si havesse mira per li donativi che essi Corsari hanno promesso alli ministri; quando l'armata, che hora è per uscire, non haveva l'efetto, che si pretende; di ricettarli e di abbracciare la proposta, fra qualche tempo, et con migliore opportunità, et che però ad alcuno dispiacesse, che da altro Principe fossero ricovrati.) Your Serenity may weigh all these matters and thereupon form your own decision.
London, the 10th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
489. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I enclose the translation of a letter written by the Resident of England to Berne. The opinions he expresses deserve consideration. He is acting at the duke's request.
Colonel Amarino has been summoned home to command the forces of his country. He favours the interests of the Catholics but declares that he will act in favour of peace. The duke, with his usual slackness, has not settled his affairs, but has promised the men for his regiment. The English agent seems disgusted at this action as sending good disciplined troops means too great an interest in the pretexts of the Catholic religion. The duke explains that he is bound by agreement with the Colonel, and in any case he could always get others.
Turin, the 10th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Enclosed
in the
preceding
despatch.
490. ISAAC WAKE, English Resident in Savoy, to the Lords of Berne.
The news of tumult among the Grisons has led the Duke of Savoy to ask me to beg you to interest yourselves in the preservation of the general liberty, and see that the conflagration does not spread. The Grisons cannot be lost without their neighbours suffering notable harm, and all the powers interested in liberty should endeavour to prevent so great a disaster. A peaceful settlement would be desirable, but words are vain things in the face of angry armed forces confronting each other. His Highness would like to see matters as they were before this disturbance, and in such case he would do his utmost to bring about a good peace, sending an ambassador for the purpose. The lords of the five Cantons have secretly informed his Highness that they expect some help from him due to them by the alliance in case they are forced to take arms for the defence of their states. But his Highness begs them not to fly to extremities, but rather to think of keeping together the Helvetian body in a friendly union. His Highness has directed me to tell you all this and to assure you of his good will towards your interests, and that he will always be ready to use his influence in favour of a good peace, if you think his offices might prove useful under the present circumstances.
At this point my secretary brings me your letters, and tells me how I am indebted to you for the kindly hearing you have afforded to him.
[Italian.]
Aug. 10.
Consiglio
di X.
Lettere
Secrete.
Venetian
Archives.
491. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the COUNCIL OF TEN.
A great favourite of the duke has been to see me and told me the following circumstances. He said he had letters from the marshal Lesdiguières who declared he could not see the duke unless he was sure of his good feeling towards the King of France, as the duke's present conduct displeased him greatly. He told me that the marshal was a good friend of the duke, but also a faithful servant of his king. He said that it was necessary to arm for the king's service, and the most serene republic should help the duke, who was too poor by himself. The marshal wished to come here, but while he was on the road the king stopped him because he felt sure that the Duke of Savoy belonged to the faction of the queen mother, and they proposed to make the marshal prisoner.
The same person told me that the duke was much distressed because matters were going badly in France. The king had written to him saying that he found he was intriguing with the Spaniards against his interests, threatened war and declared himself his enemy. The meeting and decision taken at Lyons by Guise, Lesdiguières, Termes, Bulion, Alincourt were to arm against the duke's ideas, and the duke wished to divert this dissatisfaction, seeing that it was only concerned with the queen mother and to bridle Montmorency.
He added that the marshal had at first orders to arm the duke; the king wished to employ him and give him money. The truce with Holland would certainly be broken because the king wished to pay the usual pension to the Dutch promptly. The opportunity had arisen in the disturbance in the Valtelline. The king is stirred to arms and interested in the affairs of Italy. They had given instructions to the ambassadors in Germany to cool off in their negotiations. He said that I should request an audience of the duke as he would readily communicate these particulars. He urged me warmly to try to have the same office passed with the English resident, and so jointly draw this house out of danger.
Turin, the 10th August, 1620.
[Italian; deciphered.]

Footnotes

1 This tallies with Salvetti's report that the rendezvous was to be at Beroclia in Hampshire. See Corbett, England in the Mediterranean, vol i., page 104 and note.
2 Writing on 22nd July/1st Aug. Trumbull reports that the ambassadors with Mr. Dickenson arrived at Brussels on the preceding Saturday (July 25th) and had already been to see the archduke at Marimont. State Papers, Foreign. Flanders.
3 Ann, daughter of Robert Kelway, Surveyor of the Court of Wards and Liveries, the wife of John, Lord Harrington of Exton. The Princess Elizabeth was given into his chargo in 1603 and established with his family at Combe, co. Warwick. Ann died in June 1620. Her daughter Lucy married Edward Russel, third earl of Bedford.—G.E.C. Complete Peerage.
4 The English ships Sampson and Hound taken by the Dutch at Patani in October, 1619. John Jourdain, President of the English factory at Bantam was reported slain. Cal. S.P. Colonial, East Indies, 1617–21, pages 299, 387.
5 This dispatch is printed in the vol. Letters from and to Sir Dudley Carleton, pages 466 469, and is dated the 2nd June. Johnson the courier was drowned on his passage, near Ostend. The dispatch was found upon his body, when it was cast upon the shore, and sent to Brussels, though his private letters were delivered to his wife. Letters, page 483.
6 M. Du Buisson. See Cal. S.P. Dom., 1619–23, page 171.
7 On July 24/Aug. 3 James was at Andover, and on July 38/Aug. 7 at Charlton. Nichols, Progresses of James I., iv, page 613.