Venice
February 1622, 18-28

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1911

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237-251

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'Venice: February 1622, 18-28', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 17: 1621-1623 (1911), pp. 237-251. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88827 Date accessed: 31 October 2014.


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February 1622

Feb. 18.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
329. To the Ambassador in England.
The emperor is determined to confer the electoral vote upon Bavaria. The Spaniards, although they affect to oppose this, in order to blind the English, will not really do so effectively, while they will keep half the Palatinate, and to secure the empire in their house they propose to marry Leopold to the Catholic's sister and have him chosen King of the Romans. This coincides with what we wrote last week about the dispensation. We observe from your copious despatches how far they prevail with the king in their designs, but we still think it necessary to keep him informed of the truth, though you will act with your customary prudence.
The office with the Ambassador Wotton was postponed until last Saturday, and we now enclose his reply, expressing his satisfaction at the way in which we have made the arrangements with Mansfeld.
That a copy of these presents be sent to our secretary at the Hague.
Ayes, 130.Noes, 2.Neutral, 5.
[Italian.]
Feb. 18.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
330. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
His Majesty's ships under the Earl of Oxford really had orders to arrest the two Dutch ships from the East, and a similar order was sent by land to stop them in the port of Plymouth. As they had already put out to sea a little the governor sent out boats, but they would not obey, answering that at sea they were free. It is said that the Spanish ambassador had the first news of their arrival and sent it to the favourite at Newmarket, the above instructions resulting. The commander made every effort to proceed to the ships. They were short of many things, but they got together in an instant enough breadstuffs for a few days, collected as many men and other provisions as they could, though well short of the proper complement, and put to sea, sending forward one of the best to scout. Contrary winds prevented them from going far and by the last news they have returned to the Downs off Dover. It is thought, however, that they have done so because they expected or heard that some warships of the States had started to meet them, and they might get the worst of it, although some would not mind that if it kindled the conflagration. The Spaniards announce that the ships of Dunkirk are to unite with those of England, but we have recently heard that three of the former, who had taken a ship of Rotterdam, were chased by the Dutch and scattered, one going to a Scotch port, another being wrecked on the French coast while it is not known what has become of the third. We have not yet heard whether the two ships have passed the Strait here and got into safety; they have barely had time, but if not they have not reached Zeeland, and the wind does not prevent it, or they do not fear a fight here, or if the commander does not avoid a conflict hesitating to shed the blood of that nation, although being a man of great honour he will doubtless carry out his sovereign's orders, or if the king has not charged him to make more than a show, some notable incident is almost inevitable, since the Dutch seem quite determined not to let the ships be taken, and I think that many have pretended that it might happen without a fight, and they also seem angered at the slight respect shown by such a resolution. The orders were to treat them well without any act of hostility, and to make a diligent inventory of what they contained, making a show of desiring nothing beyond just compensation for the losses suffered by the people here, and to make sure that the terms arranged by the ambassadors extraordinary would be carried out. The two Dutch ships were warned not to touch these ports, but the sailors could not deny themselves as they had not made land for many months. The king's decision was also due to the fact that the ships brought letters from Englishmen, according to the treaty obligations for the two nations to bring each other's letters, complaining bitterly of fresh damage and contumely inflicted by the Dutch, who have taken the island of Banda, which the English claim to have occupied first, whence muscatels and mace come. The ambassadors on the other hand declare that their letters, represent the matter quite differently from the English version, which is an invention of the merchants designed to secure advantages in the present negotiations. They say that Banda never belonged to the English, but another small island called Polaroon, without fruits, near it, which they respected for his Majesty's sake and would not take when the inhabitants wished to make a voluntary submission. They had made an arrangement with the English to carry out the Banda undertaking together, but as the latter said they could not have their ships ready for three months, they resolved to take the island because any delay might prove advantageous to the Portuguese. Nevertheless after they had taken it, they agreed to give a third part of the produce to the English, according to the agreement made here. They absolutely deny any cruelty, and many think it unlikely they could have shown any, saying it is only reasonable to take information and that his Majesty, who makes such professions about justice should not believe one side only.
So this trouble is added to the original affair, and the ambassadors are arguing with the commissioners all day long. They have also made to them the representations I reported and received a general reply, and knowing how much the king detests being bothered at Newmarket they fear a rebuff and being sent back without an audience if they went there without first asking for one. To their request his Majesty told them to write if they had any thing of moment. So they complain at not being able to speak to him especially as when they came he told them that every time a difficulty occurred in the course of the negotiations he would like to hear them and would be the judge.
They also lament that they cannot state the arguments on their side, and the others try to use authority and take advantage of the contingencies of the moment, while some of the most influential among the commissioners openly display their desire to destroy the friendly relations existing between this crown and the States. On the other hand the English make a great to do, and the report about cruelty and contumely seems insufferable to the people and to everyone. They say that the ambassadors came here merely to gain time by discussion, so that the ships returning from the Indies might pass their seas without danger, and even the ministers here best inclined to them and those best affected towards the public welfare, exclaim, as his Majesty has frequently protested, that they never cease coming here, that the Dutch insolence has gone so far as to speak disrespectfully of the king, that through their fault hostilities continued a year after the publication of the arrangement made here, and that the king cannot refuse to do justice upon his subjects, but the States are not so strong to bridle and restrain their merchants as he is with his. The ambassadors deny this saying that they will always punish those proved to be guilty, even with death.
I hear that the king inflamed to great wrath by the one who has most influence, declares that he will recall his subjects who are serving the Dutch and will induce the Most Christian to do the same, although he does not always do what he says. Such notions are encouraged by the Spanish ambassador, who might seize the opportunity to obtain a larger grant of levies although it would always be difficult to carry into effect.
Amid these troubles I thought fit to remind the ambassadors that a union between the States and this kingdom had always proved most beneficial to their interests, exhorting them to try and quench these flames and not stand too rigidly upon particulars, to the triumph of the common enemy. One of the well disposed ministers remarked that friends ought to make up their minds to give satisfaction, that it was too arbitrary to make them pay the compensation here rather than in India, and they are still far from settling the details, although the general principles seemed to be arranged. He assured me that once the matter of the Indies was settled all would be well and nothing else would interrupt the good relations between the two countries. But I fancy that there is much exasperation on all sides and that neither party is proceeding on the lines that the common welfare demands.
London, the 18th February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 18.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
331. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
When the king was about to reply to my request to go to Newmarket the petition of the Dutch ambassadors arrived for an audience. He hated the very idea, and said that if he granted it all the ambassadors would come to bother him one after the other and he thought he could not see one without seeing the others. So he got the Lord Chamberlain to write me a courteous letter asking me not to take the journey at this time of year, expressing the king's readiness to satisfy me, and asking me, if I had anything that could not be communicated to ministers, to send it to him in writing, or to await his return here a few days hence. I humbly replied that unfortunately several letters had been intercepted, so that I had not been able to display the continued confidence that your Serenity desired. They had now reached me altogether, and I had these and other particulars to communicate, of which I had told part to the Secretary Calvert, but I would await his Majesty's return, as I should be sorry to trouble him in any way. Thus I quietly let the matter drop, especially as I have nothing particular to ask for, and also because your Excellencies' reply to his Majesty's representations for his son-in-law might reach me in time to refer to the subject. Accordingly I briefly related to the Secretary Calvert how the Spaniards had occupied the whole of the Grisons instead of restoring the Valtelline, with the other particulars from your Serenity's letters of the 15th ult., in conformity with the communication made to the Ambassador Wotton about their plans to crush Mansfelt, remarking that the Spaniards took advantage of their possession of Rhaetia to send troops from Milan. The result of the negotiations over that business would serre as an example for those which his Majesty had in hand about the Palatinate, showing how they are trying to damp his good resolutions and how little one can count upon the apparent disagreement between Cœsar and the Catholic, as they were both determined not to make restitution. I expressed the confidence which your Serenity would always show to his Majesty, and how you intended to labour everywhere for the general welfare.
This is not the moment to say anything here about the decision to subsidise the States, by the terms of the alliance, although they probably know or will soon know all about it, and it will excite no astonishment but to speak about it would excite such comment as has been aroused before.
As regards the news from Rome about the marriage, similar things have come thence and spread through the Court, but I do not know whether they have reached his Majesty's ears, or if he would readily credit them. I have imparted it to well disposed ministers as a favourable opportunity that they should not allow to slip, although while some are most careful that he shall not learn or hear of such things, others fear to speak to him about them.
I understand that his Majesty hopes for the modification of the considerations suggested by the Congregation upon the subject of religion and parliament declaring that he could never achieve this. As regards abandoning the Dutch he says neither yes nor no, and perhaps he decided to give the orders for the arrest of the ships to show that he cared little for them and to encourage the hopes of his Holiness and the Catholic. The Spanish ambassador says he will willingly let himself be hanged if the dispensation does not come within a month, though he is cautious about making definite promises, while the dispensation itself is accompanied by the aforesaid conditions and others.
The Secretary answered that he would inform his Majesty, and the Ambassador Wotton also had sent word of the representations made to him by the Collegio. From him and from Mr. Wake at Turin they received advices from time to time of the events in the Grisons; his Majesty would appreciate the republic's confidence; he was resolved to maintain the 8,000 foot and 1,600 horse in the Palatinate and would not slacken at all with the coming of the ambassador or for any other cause, but would certainly persist in his necessary resolution.
The ambassador of the States said something to me about the proposed league against the heretics, which is either known or suspected here. From my observations I believe that discussions on the matter have frequently taken place between the ambassadors of the powers here, and that they propose to deprive your Serenity of your present friends or to molest you. I spoke to the said ambassadors in the terms supplied to me, and the suspicion will certainly alarm his Majesty, who clearly showed his feelings in the letters he wrote to the parliament.
There was previously some discussion here about a league between the States, Denmark, the Hanse towns, Sweden, the Protestant princes of Germany and this crown, with some idea of including your Serenity, the Duke of Savoy and perhaps the Swiss; but that is a long way off, although the king has already made an alliance with Denmark and contemplates one with the princes of Germany. It seems also that Baden and Wirtemberg are arming owing to the emperor's ill-treatment, and have answered the king's incitements by saying that they will do their part if he will really maintain the horse and foot as he professes; accordingly the king has bound himself to do so by letters under his own seal sent to them, to Mansfelt and Vere, asking the opinion of the last about the manner of enlisting the men.
They believe here that Mansfelt has received money from your Excellencies as well as the States, an idea which he may have promulgated himself. However, I have not heard any more on the subject except that the secretary just mentioned to me that your Serenity had engaged him, doubtless from what the Ambassador Wotton had written. I replied as instructed.
I hear that the king has sent him word that no arrangement shall be made with Cœsar which does not include a pardon for him. From what the secretary remarked his Majesty intends to employ the count himself, as Vere is to command all his forces, and it seems that they have decided to enlist the cavalry of the Prince of Brunswick. If Vere agrees they propose that the King of Bohemia shall use these with the assistance he can obtain from his friends.
London, the 18th February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 19.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
332. To the Ambassador in France, and the like to the other Courts except Rome and Florence.
We informed you of the league against heretics proposed at Rome, adding remarks about the origin and motives of that movement. The pope and others now recognise their character, and they have prudently resolved at that Court to let it drop, finding that it originated with the house of Austria. We have received confirmation about this from Florence, where the nuncio, though at first ardent, has received orders to desist. This is to complete your information, whereby you can govern your conversation.
To England, the Hague and Zurich add:
Our republic recognised the insidiousness of the proposal from the first and our standing aside immediately quenched the ardour of the proposal, as it was recognised that little would be gained without our adhesion. If you think it opportune you can let this drop in conversation, adding that all the operations of our republic are directed with the object of securing the general welfare and liberty.
Ayes, 136.Noes, 0.Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
Feb. 19.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
333. To the Ambassador at the Imperial Court and the like to the other Courts.
As against the report that the league made at Milan with the Grisons will be permanent, is another that the old treaty with France excludes that with Spain; but at Milan they pretend to attach no importance to this or to the rumours of French preparations, but only think of setting their feet more firmly in the country.
The Most Christian king has reached Paris and ordered the establishment of peace, which most of his followers have advised, and to which the Queen Mother inclines also. The Huguenots ask for it, being content to keep the places they hold as they do at present.
Orders have reached Cardinal Sourdi from France to acquaint the pope with his Majesty's decision to have the treaty of Madrid observed as regards the Valtelline, threatening to procure this by force. We send this to serve for information.
The like to:
Constantinople, Spain, Florence, England, Naples, the Hague.
Rome, the first and second paragraphs.
France and Savoy, the first and third paragraphs.
Milan, the second and third paragraphs.
Ayes, 110.Noes, 4.Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
Feb. 19.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
334. ZORZI GIUSTINIAN, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The ambassadors of France, Flanders and I decided to present joint Arz to his Majesty about the intolerable burdens of our merchants at Cairo, which would force us to abandon our trade there. We wished the new English ambassador to join us in this, but when we came to sign the Arz, he refused to sign after the French ambassador as his predecessor had done, as he had express orders from his king not to give way. Accordingly the Arz will be signed by France, myself and Flanders. This declaration of the English ambassador about express orders has never been made by any of his predecessors, and excites the fear that some dispute may have arisen between the two sovereigns. He complained to me, as the others have done, about the delay in the letters which for some time has been quite remarkable, as we are frequently two months without any.
The Vigne of Pera, the 19th February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian; deciphered.]
Feb. 19.
Inquisitori di
Stato.
Busta 442.
Venetian
Archives.
335. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the INQUISITORS of STATE.
By the same way in which I obtained the paper of the Archbishop of Spalato, which I sent on the 17th September, I hear that such letters have not reached him for some months, and the well grounded announcements do not issue from his house as heretofore, but false news is daily spread in the Court by those ministers who were the first to hear. Thus in this week a thousand things have been divulged, especially about Verona; probably a device of the Spaniards to secure some advantage.
Pasini tells me that Galerati informed him that the letters came through merchants, and were what I wrote of before. He judged them to be frequently of great importance as they were partly in cipher without signature. The king liked them greatly. He says he does not remember anything that they contained. I fear, therefore, that he speaks without real knowledge. When I have anything definite, I will write. I have opened several letters of the Cavalier Lazzari with the help of the Secretary Zon. They contain nothing but the question of his release, general news, expressions of affection for his country and compliments.
London, the 19th February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
336. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
On Tuesday last a letter reached the English ambassador from Sir [Henry] Wotton, about your Serenity engaging the Count of Mansfelt, with the conditions, and saying he expected to be summoned to the Collegio on the 22nd January, he having written on the 21st, to receive the information. Carleton had communicated this to the king before telling me his Majesty was surprised that I had not heard of it.
The Hague, the 21st February, 1622.
[Italian.]
Feb. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
337. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
They are much disturbed here at the strained relations between France and England, and do not see how to remedy this state of affairs, which may prejudice them in both kingdoms. The French ambassador constantly complains of the encouragement which they secretly afford to the Rochellese.
The ambassadors in England seem to cherish little hope of a successful issue to their negotiations. The two ships from the East Indies have not been able to make Zeeland owing to the contrary winds and remain in sight of Plymouth with the fear of being arrested by order of the King of Great Britain in favour of his subjects the members of the East India Company. The members of the Company here have sent to ask the States for enough ships to secure those vessels as well as two others which left the Indies two weeks later.
The Hague, the 21st February, 1622.
[Italian.]
Feb. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
338. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The English ambassador, after requesting the king's permission to address the Council, and having delivered his exhortation for peace, has now asked for leave to go seeing that he cannot be instrumental in bringing about peace in this kingdom. After much difficulty he obtained a courteous reply, assuring him that his master would share in the honour of quelling these disturbances, and a letter to this effect has been written to the King of Great Britain. But the ambassador has left post, though he has left all his household behind, and is expected to return. Indeed the Most Christian's letter in his honour asks the King of England to send him back. The ambassador himself obtained this point, and announced that he is taking this journey for his private affairs and to see his wife. But some say he is going to relate the state of affairs here, that they mean to destroy the Huguenots, and to induce his king to declare for them. Others say he is going with the consent of the Queen Mother and part of the Council to make more sure of the peace of this kingdom and to offer Madame as a wife for the Prince of Wales in order to break off the negotiations with the Spaniards and remove the fear of having the Spaniards and English together. The ambassador left in excellent spirits and told me that he hoped for peace, and I will make more thorough investigations.
Paris, the 22nd February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian.]
Feb. 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Dalmazia.
Venetian
Archives.
339. PAULO BASADONNA, Proveditore of Zara, to the DOGE and SENATE.
On Monday last a ship arrived here bringing word of the capture of the ship Martinella in the channel of Prodano the Saturday before. They do not know who the pirates were, except that they had seven very large and powerful ships. The very evening of the day the news arrived, the Viscount de Lormes came to see me and expressed his sorrow for what had happened. He said that if he felt sure it was Sanson he would at once go to recover the ship, and he seemed quite certain of effecting this. Seeing there was nothing to lose, I thanked him and encouraged him to act, but I do not think he will do anything. He is writing to your Serenity himself and to the General Belegno and Sanson. I have decided to send to Navarin, Coron and Modon for information.
The English ambassador returning home to England (fn. 1) was on the Martinella, but he escaped in a boat with others and has arrived here. I have assigned him a house with guards for the quarantine and supplied him with every convenience, honouring him for his own sake and as the ambassador of that crown, and expressing my condolences upon his misfortune. I think he will wait here for a passage to England. I shall show him every honour possible. He comes to me with recommendations from the Bailo Giustinian, who says he is a very important person, high in his king's favour, of great estimation in all that kingdom and that during his embassy he has always shown himself well affected towards the interests of the republic.
Zanteli, the 13th February, 1622 [old style].
[Italian.]
Enclosure.340. 11th February, 1622. Statement of Zorzi Santorini, master of the ship Martinella.
Left Constantinople eleven days ago. On the 9th, between Navarino and Prodano sighted a ship and then six more. With the scirocco wind they gained rapidly. Tried to make land near Navarino, but being surrounded ran the ship aground. The sailors and others took to the boats to escape slavery, but the ship remained in the hands of the pirates, whom we think to be of Tunis. They flew the red flag with the half moon and fired some shots which did no harm. The English ambassador was on the ship, and saved himself in a boat, but lost all he had with him. The ship may have had a cargo worth about 100,000 ducats, for various merchants. Owing to night coming on they escaped from the pirates and from the people on shore who were ready to take them. Fired a few shots but had no hope of escape with enemies both on sea and on land. Thought the pirates were Sanson and Guarda with eight ships. Took no money or goods away from the ship.
[Italian.]
Enclosure.341. Letter of the Viscount de Lormes to Captain Sanson.
When I left England I told you and Captain Guarda of our decision taken all together to seek a refuge under the protection of some prince. We cannot obtain this except from the republic of Venice, which is ready to receive us upon conditions, as you will have seen by my letters from Venice and Leghorn. If I had not been detained at Leghorn I should have found you before you left Tunis. Being at Zante I hear that you are near Sapienza and Modon, where you took a ship, in which certainly you found no sailors to tell you if it belonged to the republic. I am writing about the goods to say that I am bound by my treaty with Venice that they shall be restored, just as you promised to restore all the property of the republic. This ship is named the Martinella, and I feel sure that you will make restitution. If you do not we shall never be able to seek for a shelter anywhere else, or we shall all be obliged to seek revenge against you.
[Italian.]
Feb. 25.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
342. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The ambassadors of the States have just sent to tell me that their two ships from the Indies accompanied by ten others passed the strait the day before yesterday without meeting his Majesty's seven vessels. This pleases them the more because although the sailors were frequently told to leave these shores without delay, yet tired with their long voyage, naturally untameable, they enjoyed the good English beer and landed every day to join in fellowship with the people of the country, some even taking wives, and smoking their pipes in peace, their ships lying a short distance from Plymouth so that they could not be harmed from the castle, and thought of anything but imminent danger. They excused themselves saying that they needed water and other provisions. It was reported accordingly that they had transferred their merchandise to the war ships, and from their procedure it looked as if they were inviting destruction, which seemed almost inevitable with the royal fleet at sea and with constant supplies coming to it from their coasts. But if the royal ships had pressed on as they professed to do, they would doubtless have come up with them, and accordingly the delay was certainly intentional and probably they only wished to make a show and did not desire a conflict, as the Earl of Oxford only had seven ships in bad condition, so much so that I understand he thought of returning home but orders were sent to him to remain at sea to save appearances if for nothing else.
They have printed the letters to the English merchants here with an account of what took place in the Indies, and now there is an additional quarrel, as some Dutch fishermen in Scotland when landing to dry their nets either gave or received some injury as the result of which some Scots were slain.
The first meeting of the commissioners of the Council and the ambassadors has broken up without anything being settled, as they disagreed strongly about giving the cost of hire, the Dutch asking 1,300 florins for every last and claiming to be paid both ways, while the English would not give more than 250 for the single journey, and so they separated, both parties being very dissatisfied, some of the ministers imparting a certain amount of bitterness to the discussion. However, it is thought that things will go more smoothly on the king's return, otherwise they might as well take leave and depart. (fn. 2)
They have written home for instructions which will enable them to quench these flames, and it has been suggested to me that they may offer money to some one higher than the merchants, which may perhaps be the best way.
The French ambassador in conversation with me complained bitterly that the Dutch had taken French ships; that the Prince of Orange had sent one of them to the Rochellese and they were behaving badly to France; they insist upon employing Aerssens, though he is an open enemy of their king and has generally behaved ill since Barnevelt's death.
I have learned by a most secret way that a leading minister when speaking recently to his Majesty about the Dutch, openly charged them with various offences and afterwards went on to speak of the injuries which the Catholic had received from your Serenity, about the league and that you had even murdered the gentlemen of his ambassadors. But his Majesty stopped him, remarking that although the Dutch are great rascals, the Venetians are honourable and prudent. Some equally important ministers have told me that the Spanish ambassador had previously complained about the republic because of this league. Such ideas in ministers so infatuated with the Spaniards are the more redoutable owing to the position they enjoy beside his Majesty whereby they may influence his sentiments, but your Excellencies know that they and others of their party have been divided among themselves for some weeks past for various causes. It is thought in particular that the negotiations for the marriage and for restitution will both fall through, the blame for the one being laid upon Cœsar and for the other upon the pope, and everyone aims at laying the fault on the shoulders of another for having buoyed up the king's hopes. The king, for his honour's sake seems anxious to keep them united, but some change is thought and predicted, although this expectation may be due to the great desire for such a thing to happen.
A courier has recently arrived from Spain sent by the Ambassador Aston, and he went on straight to Newmarket. This seems to have only increased the disunion, and although we have not yet learned what particulars he brings, it is reported that he has nothing to please the king, who has postponed sending Digby (Ghibi) to that court for the moment, though previously they were hurrying on his preparations. Moreover, the news recently sent me from Rome by your Serenity has reached his Majesty's ears and produced a a good effect, and whenever I see an opening for speaking with effect, I will do so tactfully, although from numerous previous examples one cannot be too sanguine of the result.
London, the 25th February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian: the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 25.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
343. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
To the announcement that your Serenity has decided to fulfil the obligations of your alliance with the States, some ill affected persons have added that your Serenity has also united with the pirates of Algiers, who have inflicted serious damage upon the Spanish coasts, though I do not find that this report has made much impression upon the generality or upon the wisest. The ambassador of the States told me that they had made an arrangement with them including the release of 800 of their men, following the example of what the king here wished to do last year by negotiation with them, which would also benefit your Excellencies, and the said events in these parts had also showed the way for their fleets. That Mansfeld has written to the Prince of Orange that he will have 40,000 men in the field and he would like to maintain them two months only, and he was strong enough to succeed; and with what they hear from Brunswick about the re-union of the Princes of Germany, if this king only does in the Palatinate what he now professes so vehemently, which is no more than what I have written, the clouds will gather about the Austrians and they will have enough to divert their thoughts from any designs against the Netherlands for the moment.
His Majesty recently had a long conversation with Colonel Bruce, a Scot, (fn. 3) who has served from the very beginning of these wars between the Palatine and the emperor, taking many notes from him and information about the emperor's ministers and forces, the prince doing the same. I understand that news sent by Mr. Wake from Turin has made a great impression upon him, that the troops of Milan and of Leopold are moving against Mansfelt, and that the Spaniards announce that the Palatinate is not restored because the emperor, for his honour's sake, cannot do less than occupy the whole and take away the electorate from the Palatine, although they add that their king, by his great influence, will procure the restitution of both.
The French ambassador told me that his king had given orders to discover once for all whether they approved of the action of the governor of Milan in Spain or no: for the Valtelline he would shed the last drop of his blood, but he had no reason to do anything for the Palatinate if the king here did not act, and he could not justify himself before the world for doing anything as the Spaniards would afterwards join these here to help the Huguenots, seeing they had allowed the deputies of la Rochelle to send two other ships hence, with munitions, besides the collections made in the churches and from numerous gentlemen, which amount to a good sum. On the other hand this ambassador has obtained that if their ships capture any booty they may not come and sell it in this country. The Ambassador Doncaster is expected back soon, but they do not think he has obtained anything by his negotiations.
No Grison ambassador has ever appeared here of late, although the king's physician Mayerne recently returned here from Geneva, where he went for some purchases which he had made in the neighbourhood. As a Bernese subject the lords of Berne ordered him to make representations to his Majesty about the Valtelline and the Palatinate, begging him to reflect upon the ascendancy of the house of Austria and the universal danger, and to divert the designs which they fear the Duke of Savoy entertains against Geneva and the Pays du Vaud. He returned from the court the day before yesterday, but so far as I can gather obtained only general replies, promising good offices, that his Majesty had declared himself sufficiently about the Palatinate and would do his share. He recognised the importance of the loss of the Valtelline, but he could not do everything and asked what the King of France was doing, inferring that it was his concern, and so forth, showing that the true way to approach his Majesty is through the Palatinate without pressing him much about other matters, and as it is so difficult to move him in a matter which concerns him so nearly, it is much more so to get him to take up two affairs, while if he acts for the one the rest will benefit.
In some of the counties here a number of rioters and rebels have collected, cloth workers; as owing to the gold sent out of the kingdom and through the wars in Germany and Poland and the absence of the Sultan from Constantinople, business has dried up very much this year and their work, the merchants finding themselves with full stocks which they cannot sell, especially with the use of silk which is almost universal both here and elsewhere. Accordingly countless poor people are out of work, and without the means to live. They are in bands of from 500 to 600 and they say even as many as 3,000. They go about stealing animals, corn and various things, even breaking into houses. The justices and lieutenants of the counties who went out to meet them by force were received with stones and arms with which they had provided themselves, desperation assisting them. Accordingly some of the more prudent tried to appease them by giving them food and drink and a little money. They cried out that they only desired a livelihood. If they had work they would do no harm. They are not against the king or the government and so far they have no leaders. However, movements of this kind, whatever their nature are not good and the Council have decided to give them 3 pence a day or about 8 of our soldi until they should be provided with work or some other expedient be found. They have discussed various measures, but in particular to forbid silk clothing utterly. If this were to take effect it would damage the trade of other nations. It is thought that these disturbances will soon quiet down altogether, especially if, as they hope, they are not more deeply rooted than appears. (fn. 4)
London, the 25th February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 25.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
344. GIROLAMO LANDO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
One of the two bronze pieces from the wreck of the Santa Giustina was recovered quite early and taken to Enkhuizen. I have now got the other with six iron ones. I sent a gentleman to Ireland to take the necessary steps and enclose a note of the particulars. The bronze piece was put aboard the ship Fedelta of this city, Captain William Driver, in the port of Bantry. Here it is worth about 600 crowns and at Venice it will doubtless be worth much more. The said master undertook to take it to Zante or Cephalonia, free of charge, those who recovered it being bound to pay that by the contract. Although I had no instructions to send it to Venice, your Serenity will approve of my taking advantage of this ship. I hope it will have reached your dominions by now, as it left Ireland about the end of December.
London, the 25th February, 1621 [M.V.].
[Italian.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
345. Note of the pieces recovered from the wreck Santa Giustina:
A bronze piece recovered by Sig. Labarre, weighing 3,210lbs.
An iron piece recovered by the same, weighing 3,090lbs.
One half the bronze piece makes 1,605lbs. at £ s. d.
4l. sterling 118 pni the hundred giving 69 11 0
Five iron pieces recovered by James Jonson of Enkhuizen, weighing in all 15,650lbs.
One half is 7,825lbs., and with the other half £ s. d.
above makes 9,370lbs. at 12 pni 6 the hundred 58 3 3
And to make up the value of the said piece of bronze this has been expended1179
69110
[Italian.]
Feb. 28.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
346. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Ambassador Carleton has assured everyone here that his king's help will be ready and on the 10th March next they will begin to pay out money for the Palatinate, and his Majesty will bind himself for as long as his help is necessary and until his children are reinstated. The sovereigns here seem content hoping it may encourage other princes.
They have also heard from Sir [Henry] Wotton that your Serenity has sent the Secretary Lionello to the Count of Mansfelt from which they augur well. The English ambassador questioned me on the subject but I had nothing to answer. He said that Wotton wrote with so much assurance that he could not have any doubts. He praised the prudence of your Serenity saying that this step would create a diversion and form the basis of a strong new union with the Protestant princes.
The Hague, the 28th February, 1622.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 28.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
347. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The ambassadors of the States in London have sent hither the advocate of the East India Company for fresh instructions and fuller powers, as they fully perceive that if they wish to induce the King of England to adopt an attitude more useful to the public service and the good of those provinces, they must not show themselves hard or exacting.
The Hague, the 28th February, 1622.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Sir John Eyre, returning from Constantinople.
2 This meeting took place on the 16th February: see Cal. S.P. Col., East Indies, 1622–4, page 9.
3 Sir Henry Bruce. He served successively the Dutch and the Emperor Ferdinand. At the end of 1618 he offered his services to Venice. In the autumn of 1620 he was sent to Scotland to levy 2,000 men for the war in the Palatinate. Venetian Calendar, vol. xv, pages 374, 384 and vol. xvi, page 434; Corbett: England in the Mediterranean, vol. i, pages 156, 157.
4 Apparently these disturbances were chiefly in Wiltshire and Devonshire. Birch: Court and Times of James I, ii, pages 291, 292.