Venice
August 1620, 21-29

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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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373-382

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'Venice: August 1620, 21-29', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 16: 1619-1621 (1910), pp. 373-382. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88765 Date accessed: 22 August 2014.


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August 1620

Aug. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
505. To the Ambassador in England.
The rebels of the Valtelline, with continued help from Spain have compelled the Grisons to withdraw from Sondrio, so at present they are undisputed masters in the valley. The evil designs of the Spaniards daily become more manifest. The Swiss of Berne and Zurich are preparing to help the Grisons, although the Catholic Swiss declare they will block the pass, and there seems every prospect of war there. These events accompanied by the attempt to obtain the possessions of others under the false pretext of religion show how necessary it is to prevent such evil consequences. We shall do what we can in helping the Grisons and Swiss.
We direct you to impart the particulars to his Majesty, insisting upon the gravity of the case, and how necessary it is that his Majesty's great power and influence should be employed without delay to preserve the common liberty, which should nearly concern all the powers.
We add for your information that we have spoken upon these matters to the Agent of the King of Bohemia asking him to represent them to his Majesty and Prince Gabor and to urge Bohemia to bring pressure to bear upon England.
The Turkish fleet fell in with ours, and friendly greetings were exchanged. The Captain Pasha offered to join our Proveditore of the fleet in chasing pirates.
The like, mutatis mutandis, to the Secretary Surian at the Hague, except the second paragraph.
Ayes, 162.Noes, 4.Neutral, 6.
[Italian.]
Aug. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
506. To the Ambassador in France.
We hear from Turin that Antonio Donato, after leaving England, went to Paris where he proposed to the Count of Verua, Ambassador of Savoy, various things prejudicial to our republic. We wish you to send us particulars of his movements and proceedings.
Ayes, 138.Noes, 0.Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
Aug. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
507. VALERIO ANTELMI, Venetian Secretary in Germany, to the DOGE and SENATE.
From Brussels on the 8th I hear that in reply to the English ambassadors and their representations in the name of their king for peace and that no harm should be inflicted upon the Palatinate, enlarging therein upon the resolution for its defence, the archduke replied that so far as peace was concerned he considered the office a very proper one, but the usurpation of the Palatine was unjust and contrary to the legitimate possession of the kingdom, which came to his Highness by hereditary succession, and to the emperor by his cession as well as by a solemn election. Thus the archduke showed how much the pretensions of his house have grown.
Vienna, the 22nd August, 1620. Copy.
[Italian.]
Aug. 25.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
508. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the Doge and SENATE.
With respect to the guns I will follow the instructions of the Ambassador Lando. Meanwhile I have notified his Excellency that a merchant who professes to obtain ordinance habitually from England told me he was almost certain to obtain the promise of a good quantity.
The Marquis Spinola is said to be marching towards Coblenz and they announce that he will not go to the Palatinate but straight to Bohemia. They also say that the frank negotiations of the King of Great Britain have induced the King of Spain's Council in Brabant not to touch the Palatinate. This report comes from the Spaniards and is repeated here by one who has heard it. Anyone who likes to believe it is at liberty to do so.
With regard to the understanding between the King of Great Britain and these States I have not discovered anything sufficient to make myself certain, and his guardedness in declaring himself only makes this too intelligible.
From news received from London from the Ambassador Lando I hope that Pasini will soon be back from Ireland. He seems distressed about the great expenses he has incurred to go and get information about the pirate ships and I fear the public will be more heavily charged than it cares, but I can answer for Pasini's straightforwardness and good will, and he will keep down expenses as much as possible. I hope your Serenity will have received earlier news of him from England than from here.
The Hague, the 25th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 26.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Milano.
Venetian
Archives.
509. GIACOMO VENDRAMIN, Venetian Secretary at Milan, to the DOGE and SENATE.
On the last days of last week the English ambassador returning from Constantinople passed this way. After he had dined and was proposing to continue his journey he was detained by his Excellency, who first sent two gentlemen, and afterwards went in person to visit him at the inn where he was staying. However, he did not show him any other courtesy, so far as one knows, and the ambassador had to stay a day longer to return the visit. This decision of his Excellency has seemed a great matter, but he pretends he went because of his relations in England. But it is considered a device to win the favour of that nation, though it is not Catholic.
Milan, the 26th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Aug. 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
510.To the Ambassador in England.
We hear from our Ambassador Contarini in France that M. de Leon, who left this embassy a few months ago, on his return to Court has stated that the Cavalier Aerssens, Ambassador of the States who recently came here, proposed to create a diversion for the Spaniards in Italy in order to secure Bohemia for the Palatine and preventing the progress of the house of Austria, to be made by the Duke of Savoy under colour of his pretensions to Monferrat; that it would be easy to attack the state of Milan both for the duke and for the republic, and for this purpose the Princes of the Union and the United Provinces of the Low Countries would contribute money, the opportunity being most favourable. M. de Leon added that the republic received the proposal most favourably and proposed to submit it to Savoy to learn his views; his Highness had already communicated with M. Lesdiguières and was awaiting his opinion and assistance.
We wished to send you these particulars for information and to use if any one speaks upon the subject, when you will represent the untruth of the whole statement, since no proposal of the kind has been made, the single aims of the republic being peace and to rest contented with her own without desiring the property of others.
The like, mutatis mutandis, to the Secretary Surian at the Hague, saying, instead of the last paragraph:
We send you these particulars to communicate to their High Mightinesses, so that they may consider what their service demands in a matter in which they are interested.
Ayes, 158.Noes, 0.Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
511. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
This week letters have arrived here from the Agent Wake from Turin and also from the Secretary Gregorio reporting in a quite satisfactory manner the case of the Valtelline, corresponding with all the points notified to me by your Excellencies, but increasing the number of the dead and adding that the statutes and ordinances have been burned in all the districts, where they pretend to give new laws. The exiles have chosen new magistrates and they have set up in the public places standards with the cross on them, raising the cry, long live the Most Holy Church, liberty and one Cavalier Robustelli, their chief, with the title of Governor General of the Valtelline. These particulars have displeased the ministers here greatly. The letters were sent to his Majesty, who is now on the progress he enjoys at Beuule, 70 miles away. Possibly on hearing this he will come to some further decision, but occasionally, owing to his taste for hunting and his hatred of affairs, he does not see until many days later the letters sent from here to him in great numbers, with the foreign advices and internal affairs so one must never be in any hurry about obtaining any resolution. (Ma alle volte e per il gusto delle caccie e per l'abhorrimento dei negotii, le lettere, che in molto numero di qua, e di avisi di fuori e di affari di dentro le sono mandate, non sono vedute da lei che dopo molti giorni, onde non bisogna havere mai fretta nel cavare alcuna risolutione.) However, I will not neglect what I believe to be my duty, acting with proper tact and diligence.
The Ambassador Dohna is with the king. So far he has obtained no fresh result. When any one reminds his Majesty that Spinola is on the march and proceeding towards the Palatinate, he says, What do you know? You are ignorant. I know quite well what I am about. All these troubles will settle themselves, you will see that very soon. I know what I am talking about. To requests to make new decisions he replies that he does not know what more he can do, since he wishes to procure peace in any event and he does not wish to weaken the force of his mediation by any stronger declarations. He says: I allow them to levy as many men as they wish from these kingdoms, I leave my subjects free and even exhort them to give help in money, I perform all the good offices which are opportune with all the powers. What can I do more ? (Sua Maestà con quelli che le raccordano lo Spinola marchiare et andare verso il Palatinato dice, che sapete Voi! Sete ignoranti; so ben io quello che faccio. Si accommoderanno tutti questi rumori lo vederrete ben tosto. So ciò che dico. Et all' instanze per nuove risolutioni, risponde non sapere che fare più, mentre vuole in ogni mode procurare la pace, ne con maggiori dichiarationi dimminuire la forza alla sua mediatione; dicendo io lascio levare quante genti si vogliono da questi Regni, io lascio in libertà li sudditi, anzi li essorto, che diino aiuti di danari, faccio tutti gli ufficii buoni che sono opportuni con tutti li Prencipi, che posso fare d'avantaggio ?) Thus although his Ambassadors Wotton, Cornuuals and Vueston have instructions to go about publishing freely that his Majesty ought not and will not allow the Palatinate to fall in any circumstances, where the dowry of his daughter and the patrimony of his grandchildren lie, yet it is clearly understood that there is but slight disposition to do more; indeed for this year they would find it difficult to do anything more, and indeed we can never see anything actual or requisite without the summoning of the parliament, a course that is very far from the king's thoughts. (Oltra che per quest anno dificilmente si potrebbe neanche fare d'avantaggio, et oltra che in somma non si potra vedere mai cosa reale ne ben propria, senza la riduttione del Parlamento, troppo lontana dal pensiero del Re.)
Concerning the marriage there is only Digby who professed that he would be departing for Spain at the beginning of September. It now appears that he is procrastinating, and whereas some weeks ago he displayed much solicitude about his expedition and departure, he now brings forward the excuse of his private affairs to put the matter off still longer. His haste, his slowness, his decisions and his speech derive their form and motion not so much from the intentions of his Majesty as from the nod of the Ambassador of Spain. (La celerità, la lentezza, la risolutione et la lingua sua ricevendo la forma et il moto non tanto dalli intendimenti di Sua Maestà quanto dalli ceni dell'Ambasciator di Spagna.)
The fleet of twenty ships is expected to leave in eight days. Last Sunday the General Mansfilt with all his captains attended the communion of the Lord's Supper in church, and afterwards he gave them a sumptuous banquet in his house.
They are trying all they can think of to obtain money. The present and the late Mayor of London, the Attorney General (Avocato reggio) and some other powerful persons have been summoned before the Star Chamber, (fn. 1) and they expect great profit from their coming condemnation, but it will nearly all disappear in favours and grants, in accordance with the natural generous inclination of his Majesty. He is as clement as he is liberal and has readmitted to his favour and his presence the Lord Treasurer Suffolk, who was recently condemned, as reported.
I have arranged with the diver of Encusen and drawn up a formal paper with the weight of the artillery shipwrecked on the coast of Ireland, as I have written in detail to the Secretary Surian. He asked, having also made the same demand of the said secretary, that he should have for himself three fourths of the pieces recovered, and produced agreements showing that such terms had been granted to him several times by their High Mightinesses. But at length I beat him down to agree to accept one half. He bound himself to bear all the expense, except a gratuity of 20 crowns paid by me when he recovers anything, and with the promise of some gratuity at the end according to the work and my favour. He will not only fish for the pieces but will carry and consign at Encusen what he recovers to the persons interested, upon condition that at the expense of your Serenity I procure sufficient leave from his Majesty for him to transport them. I will try to obtain this as soon as possible, but possibly even here I shall not escape some difficulties. He has already gone to begin operations. In any case some advantage is bound to result for the public benefit.
I was recently invited by the owners of the Centurion, which was engaged in the service of your Excellencies, to go and see it, now that it has been equipped as one of the twenty to go against the pirates. All those who had been in the service of the most serene republic, made me expressions of their extreme satisfaction being moved even to tears, and all of them showed the most lively desire to serve her in any other emergency, so that I enjoyed a very pleasant day. On her and on another ship near by, which is also engaged in the same service, were displayed the banners of St. Mark and they fired off their guns several times out of emulation. Perhaps this will not prove in vain and may produce consequences beneficial to the interests of your Serenity. I understand that all the men of all the ships are extremely well satisfied, only some of one of them have some claims, but they have not let me hear them yet. I hope that all this will not be displeasing to your Serenity.
London, the 27th August, 1620.
[Italian; the part in Italics deciphered.]
Aug. 28.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
512. To the Ambassador in England.
With regard to the affairs of the Valtelline we have nothing to add except that the Spaniards are openly occupying the valley. They continue to use the pretext of religion and declare they do not want the possessions of others, but this is pure artifice, as they succeed by this means in cutting off Italy from the ultramontanes. Accordingly all princes interested in the common liberty ought to reflect and not abandon a cause of so much consequence.
We direct you to continue to impart these particulars to his Majesty, insisting upon their gravity and urging him to encourage the Grisons and Swiss to resist, and not help the Spaniards, showing his Majesty that there is no time to lose in making a declaration useful to the common interests. You will tell him that the republic will do her part. She has sent money to the Grisons and will send to the Swiss. We shall also urge the Duke of Savoy to act. He is conferring with Lesdiguie?res on the question. In this way you will try to induce his Majesty to make a generous declaration.
His Majesty's agent in Savoy is energetically influencing his Highness in favour of the common interests, and even if he does not succeed he deserves every commendation. You will inform his Majesty of this, testifying to the agent's useful services and our entire satisfaction with him. You will also tell his relations and friends so that he may be encouraged to continue his good offices.
This morning the Agent of Bohemia informed us of the continued troubles of his king and asked for a loan of 100,000 ducats. We should like to show our friendship to his Majesty, but our recent heavy expenditure and the present troubles, compel the republic to arm and to help the Grisons and Swiss, and this is sufficient excuse, though we have kept the passes closed against men and munitions sent against the King of Bohemia, to show our good will, and the fact of our remaining armed and keeping troops on the frontier will help him, as the Spaniards are obliged to keep forces there which otherwise they might send to Germany. You will advance these reasons to the king when you have a suitable opportunity, to justify our action towards the King of Bohemia.
The first paragraph, mutatis mutandis, to the Secretary Surian at the Hague, adding:
You will make a confidential communication of current affairs to the English ambassador Carleton, who seems so well disposed, urging the gravity of the case, and informing him of our representations and operations, while bearing witness to the good offices performed by the resident of his king in Savoy, and inciting him to induce his Majesty to make some declaration in favour of the common liberty, such as befits his great influence and power.
Ayes, 122.Noes, 5.Neutral, 6.
[Italian.]
Aug. 28.
Senato,
Mar.
Venetian
Archives.
513. Whereas the payment of the soldiers of Colonel Peyton must be regulated according to the contracts made with other ultramontane troops on the 7th February last, and the three hundred foot, who are in three companies, partly in this city and partly in the fleet, must be formed under two ensigns, with a hundred and fifty in each, that authority be given to Colonel Peyton to give such orders as he may consider necessary for the settlement of the accounts up to the present time, and for the settlement of any other difficulties which may arise in this respect.
Ayes, 101.Noes, 2.Neutral, 6.
[Italian.]
Aug. 28.
Senato,
Mar.
Venetian
Archives.
514. Read in the Collegio on the 19th August, 1620.
Whereas Colonel Peyton has requested that some arms, which he has, may be received on account of the debt which he has with his Serenity:
That the Proveditori and Patrons of the Arsenal be directed to estimate the value of the said arms and make allowance to Peyton according to that estimate, as has been done in other cases.
Ayes, 101.Noes, 2.Neutral, 8.
[Italian.]
Aug. 28.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
515. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I enclose the reply of the Bernese to the duke upon the representations made by the Resident of England. They show their strong determination to help their confederates and will act more vigorously than the others.
Limburgh, the 28th August, 1620.
[Italian.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
516. Most Illustrious Sire.
Sir Isaac Wake, ambassador of the King of Great Britain with your Highness informs us of your distress at the troubles in the Grisons, and what may happen as a consequence. He exhorts us to act vigorously in defence of the common liberty. Your Highness shows your desire to procure peace for all the states. We assure you that we will do everything in our power for the preservation of our allies and of the general peace. We have asked Sir Isaac Wake to inform you of our good intentions. We have summoned an assembly of all the Cantons and have arranged for deputies of eight Cantons to go to the Grisons and to appease the troubles. We pray God that peace may ensue.
Berne, the 3rd April, 1620.
[French.]
The Council of the Town of Berne.
Aug. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
517. To the Ambassador at Rome.
The entry of the Turkish fleet into the Gulf has greatly displeased us, but our Proveditore of the Fleet was not strong enough to offer any opposition. So he decided to send his compliments to the Captain Pasha and ask him not to go any further. They agreed to this and said they wanted to punish some pirates. However the Proveditore doubted their faith and sent word to us and to the resident at Naples. At the same time we heard of the affair of Manfredonia with some suspicion that the fleet was making for Ancona; accordingly we sent word to the governor there. It only proves what we have always said, that the entrance of the Spaniards into the Gulf has incited the Turks to do the same, a thing that has not occurred since the last Turkish war. Is is all due to Ossuna, and the visit of the Turkish fleet to Manfredonia was concerted by him in order to throw discredit upon the Cardinal Borgia. We have done what we could, ordering our Proveditore to keep our fleet together and watch the Turk, and have ordered our Bailo at Constantinople to make strong representations to prevent the recurrence of this event.
We add for your information that although false rumours have been spread, casting doubts upon our good faith, we have never had the slightest intention of bringing the Turkish fleet into the Gulf, and the action of our ministers in the present circumstances confirms this.
We send these particulars for your information to use when you think our service requires it.
The like to.
France, Spain, England, Savoy, Germany, Florence, Milan, The Hague, Naples.
Ayes, 150.Noes, 0.Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 29.
Senato,
Mar.
Venetian
Archives.
518. That in testimony of the public satisfaction afforded by Robert Tocley, an Englishman, who has rendered good service in the fleet with his ship for two years, a gold chain be given to him of the value of 150 ducats of current money, in accordance with what has been done with other captains of ships, so that he may return home satisfied and be ready to offer his services in other emergencies.
Ayes, 154.Noes, 8.Neutral, 8.
On the 23rd June, 1620, in the Collegio:
Ayes, 18.Noes, 1.Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
Aug. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
519. VALERIO ANTELMI, Venetian Secretary in Germany, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Mr. Wotton, ambassador of England to your Serenity passed through Augsburg on the 21st, after having performed offices at the towns of Ulm, Wittenberg and others, and with the Archduke Leopold also. The said archduke has written to the emperor here that the representations made by this minister were very temperate. He said that his Majesty would not commend the action of the Palatine in Bohemia, but because of the circumstances and in consideration of his grandchildren, he was bound to keep the defence of the Palatine in view, though he hoped he would always maintain a firm friendship with the emperor and the house of Austria.
Vienna, the 29th August, 1620. Copy.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 The charge was conspiring to the prejudice of the crown in renewing the charter of London. Lando has got this news late, as it is given in a letter of July 8th, Old Style. Birch: Court and Times of James I. Vol. ii. pages 205, 206.