Venice
December 1621, 6-13

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1911

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173-178

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'Venice: December 1621, 6-13', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 17: 1621-1623 (1911), pp. 173-178. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88822 Date accessed: 29 July 2014.


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December 1621

Dec. 6
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
235. CHRISTOFFORO SURIANO, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Yesterday morning the wind was fair for England, so the ambassadors will start with the deputies of the East India Company. (fn. 1) In addition to their instructions about the Indies they are to do all in their power to encourage the king in his intentions to give substantial help to the princes here in recovering their state, representing the artifices of the Spaniards and the small confidence to be placed upon their promises, and to try and induce him not to listen any more to Gondomar. They visited the princes and Aerssens had a long private conversation with the king, arranging what he should say in England.
At the very time they left came intercepted letters of the emperor to the Catholic and Father Jacinto sent by Mansfelt, saying he will invest the Duke of Bavaria with the electorship, and asking for help, and speaking disrespectfully of the King of Great Britain, calling him an heretic. The King of Bohemia has sent these letters to England for his Majesty to read.
The substance of these letters was communicated to me by the English ambassador, and afterwards by these princes yesterday evening. When Aerssens arrives he will represent to the king and the ministers the importance of the affair, and he will also see that it reaches the parliament.
The Hague, the 6th December, 1621.
[Italian.]
Dec. 9.
Consiglio de'X.
Capi.
Parte Secreto.
Venetian
Archives.
236. In the Council of Ten.
That a secretary of this Council, after enjoining due secrecy, communicate to the Savii of the Collegio the following advices which came in a letter from the secretary at Naples of the 30th November last, namely: a trustworthy person reported he had learned from Don Carlo Doria that they were proposing to send the whole or part of the fleet to Brindisi, but as no reply came from the Duke of Feria, they decided to unman the galleys, which will do little or nothing this winter. As they understood that the pirate Sanson was strong in ships and doing a great deal of harm, they proposed to arm eight or ten galleys to stop his further progress, and if Feria should renew his proposals to enter the Gulf his Highness would use those also.
Ayes, 17.Noes, 0.Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
Dec. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
237. To the Ambassador at Rome.
We hear that the Catholic has urged the emperor to make peace with Hungary, as owing to the Spanish troops being engaged in Flanders and Italy he cannot keep those who are in the emperor's service; upon which the emperor sent Esterhazy to Nichilsburgh with fuller powers to make peace or agree to a truce. Coire has surrendered to Leopold without a blow. The Spaniards have further ordered the Swiss to give up fifty persons, mentioned by name. This news of the progress of the Austrians shows their vast ambitions against everyone and our state in particular. We send you these particulars not only for information but to use for the public service.
The like to the ambassadors in France, Spain, England, Turin, and the secretary at the Hague.
Ayes, 123.Noes, 1.Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Dec. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
238. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Parliament met on the 20th ult., old style, the prince having come from Newmarket to open it, when in the king's name he offered every reasonable satisfaction, with the hope of a similar spirit on their part. The Lord Keeper, Lord Digby and the Lord Treasurer afterwards described the negotiations in Germany, and spoke of the necessity for arming, the impossibility of doing so without large pecuniary assistance from the people, as the royal coffers were empty, trying to show that this was not due to its being ill employed, and adding that his Majesty felt confident that the declarations published when the assembly rose would be carried out now. It finally amounted to a strong request for speedy provisions to maintain the army now in the Palatinate, and afterwards to make a royal one in good time.
The reply has been delayed although for reasons of slight moment, but chiefly from dissatisfaction because the Earl of Southampton and some others abstained from appearing from fear that they could not express their opinions safety, according to the liberty which they claim. This has aroused a noisy discussion in the Lower Chamber with the Secretary of State about the prerogatives of the crown. This has been seized upon by some for the purpose of taking up the business left incomplete with the object of obtaining satisfaction before giving any to the king. Many pointed out the difficulties to be encountered this year in particular, owing to the scarcity of the harvests and the shortness of money. This consideration acts powerfully in diverting them from all idea of a war in the centre of Germany, where all the princes have fallen under the emperor's yoke and where success is either impossible or only to be obtained by a profuse expenditure of men and money; but inclines them to make it in Flanders or else at sea, imitating the renowned Elizabeth, with slight expense to the realm, indeed, to increase its wealth. However, to pass over the details, they decided yesterday evening to grant his Majesty a subsidy for his urgent needs, to be collected by the first of February, and the amount will be from 80,000l. to 100,000l. or 500,000 ducats. For the rest they have reserved their right to continue the debates which aim at ridding this realm of many disorders, and of those they consider its enemies, to smash the fabric of the marriage with Spain, to make no further grants without being fully assured that they will be properly expended, and to force the king into war with the Spaniards, petitioning him to oppose them, as being the root of all the ills of the Palatinate, and because true prudence taught one always to strike at the head, especially when it can be done more easily, and not at the tail. Not only those who have always shown themselves zealous against the Spanish house but even some of the councillors who have hitherto seemed to belong to the Spanish party, have argued powerfully in the Lower House, either because they foresaw the event and the king's inclination, or from some other cause, that for this purpose they should advise and petition his Majesty to act in concert with the States. Although everyone feels that it will be very difficult to kindle him against the Spaniards, yet the most prudent do not despair of finally bringing him to that point. It also seems likely that he will be very angry at the news of the attempt of the Count of Tilly and Cordova to take Heidelberg, and at the emperor's letter to Spain intercepted by Mansfelt, which clearly shows that his Imperial Majesty has disposed of the electorship and is trying to shield himself behind the Catholic.
In the last audience which M. Caron, ambassador of the States had, the king showed the utmost determination to recover the patrimony of his children by force, now that negotiation no longer avails, and to do everything possible with his parliament to get ready. He declared with many oaths that he would not conclude the marriage unless the Palatinate were restored, remarking that otherwise there would be too much discord between the parties, and hinting that in this event he hoped for assistance from the States and the Prince of Orange with all their power.
As regards the disputes in the East Indies he grew warm and showed his desire that they should be adjusted to the satisfaction of his subjects. He even admitted that he had ordered reprisals, but added that he desired a peaceful settlement above all things. For this purpose the ambassadors extraordinary arrived in this city yesterday, with instructions from their masters, so I understand, to give satisfaction within any reasonable limits, and also to support the interests of the King Palatine and make various important overtures (aperture).
London, the 10th December, 1621.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Dec. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
239. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The particulars of my preceding letters differ very considerably from the advices which have reached you from the Ambassador Cornaro at Madrid, there was indeed something to the opposite effect scattered about in all my letters upon the influence here of Spanish insinuations and incitements, especially in those of the 8th and 15th October, which may have gone astray. But this does not amount to offers of assistance to the Catholic for a war against the States or to requests for mutual understanding, and help in the event of a rising in this kingdom.
In order to make myself clear about what happened at that time, although now their proceedings are so different, and because I have always found the king very slippery and apt to speak in different ways for the attainment of his ends, in the uncertainty of their issue, and with a strong desire for the marriage and to avoid the perils of arms, I have tried to discover from the ambassador of the States, from some of their dependants and others of high authority, and of equally assured friendship what they know, and I find that they have never heard a word about it. Doubtless if this took place with any real intention of carrying it out it would have passed between the king and the favourite alone, and even the prince might not know of it. M. Caron and some others felt absolutely certain that there was nothing in it, while they confirmed all the important particulars of my preceding letters, which I had originally obtained in another way, so that I could almost venture to affirm that nothing has happened here beyond what I have reported from time to time about the king's threats about the Indies, his orders for reprisals, his desire for predominance at sea and free trade with Flanders, that the ambassadors extraordinary should also settle about the fisheries and all other outstanding disputes (in which they will doubtless encounter many difficulties in spite of the favourable moment of their arrival, by reason of the bitterness with which their interests are always assailed by some of the ministers here) and finally he said something about a treaty of peace or a truce but even so with the object of arranging a universal settlement; while for the effectuation of the marriage they have frequently expressed intentions in favour of our most holy religion.
These things now seem suspended in great part if not altogether, and they speak in very different fashion, about the necessity of deciding upon war and about the parliament, which stands for the natural and undying maxims of the kingdom on which the aspect of practically everything depends and without which the crown here cannot obtain the means for any considerable war. It is true that if it is dissolved without making any proper resolutions, if it involves itself in fresh intricacies or in hopes of restitution, to which they will never cease to give ear, in my opinion, even in the very clash of arms, or to keep the door open, either by concluding the marriage, which the Spaniards may now arrange more easily if they like, as I wrote on the 18th ult., and as I suggested generally several times, particularly on the 15th October, and as the Ambassador Zen wrote from Rome on the 16th November, it might easily happen that the outcome would prove very different from the ancient objects of this crown, which has clearly been turned about by other winds these last years, though in any event it is difficult to persuade oneself that they would ever go so far as to join the Spaniards to fight the Dutch, because his Majesty has such a horror of trouble that he would take good care not to embroil himself seriously with a people so near at hand and so powerful at sea, leaving on one side all the other points about the interests of these realms, which your Excellencies have mentioned.
I will continue my diligence with proper reserve and tact.
London, the 10th December, 1621.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Dec. 13.
Senato,
Mar.
Venetian
Archives.
240. It being necessary to chose an ordinary ambassador to the King of England in place of Girolamo Lando, that this council meet at an early opportunity to select a noble, who can refuse to act on pain of suffering the penalties prescribed. The one chosen should have 300 gold ducats a month for expenses without rendering account. For horses, draperies and chests, 300 ducats of 6 lire 4 grossi the ducat, and 1,000 gold ducats as a gift. For all expenses except couriers and carriage of letters, 40 crowns a month of 7 lire each. For the secretary 100 ducats to equip himself, and for two couriers, 20 ducats each. For the salary and table expenses of the chaplain, 136 ducats and 100 ducats a year respectively.
Ayes, 129.Noes, 0.Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Dec. 13
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
241. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
News has reached here of the surrender of Gabor in Bohemia. The king's only hopes of recovering his own is in vigorous resolutions of the parliament of England, though the help may come too late, and it may prove a heavy labour to get it out of the clutches of Bavaria and the house of Austria.
Last Thursday at Court the king gave me copies of the intercepted letters of the emperor, of which I wrote last week, and which I enclose. Some here doubt whether they will credit these letters in England, saying that they are forgeries or at least Spanish, and they do not believe that Gondomar will lose his hold upon England where he makes them believe what he wishes. They are anxiously awaiting news from that quarter, as they have heard nothing since the departure of the ambassadors for London.
The Hague, the 13th December, 1621.
[Italian.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
242. Letter of the Emperor to his Catholic Majesty.
You will hear from Father Hyacinth my views about transferring the electoral vote to the Duke of Bavaria according to the promise made to him. Powerful reasons urge this course. The Palatine lies in exile in Holland and I do not think he deserves any consideration. The Calvinists will go any lengths for their religion.
[Latin.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
243. Another letter of the Emperor to the Catholic.
Recommends Father Hyacinth who is going to the Spanish Court in the pope's name, and his negotiations.
Vienna, the 15th October, 1621.
[Italian.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
244. Letter of the Emperor to FATHER HYACINTH.
To assure Spanish Court that emperor desires Bavaria's investiture with electorate for which Spanish help necessary.
Vienna, the 15th October, 1621.
[Italian.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
245. Letter of the Emperor to DON BALTHAZAR DE ZUNIGA.
Recommends Father Hyacinth; necessary to give the electorate to the Duke of Bavaria.
Vienna, the 15th October, 1621.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 The Dutch commissioners were Francis Aerssens, lord of Sommelsdijk, Dirck Bas and Hendrik van Tuyll of Sirooskerken. Brugmans: Verslag van een Onderzoek in Engeland naar Archivalia, page 355.