Venice
September 1625, 1 -13

Sponsor

Institute of Historical Research

Publication

Author

Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1913

Pages

151-159

Annotate

Comment on this article
Double click anywhere on the text to add an annotation in-line

Citation Show another format:

'Venice: September 1625, 1 -13', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 19: 1625-1626 (1913), pp. 151-159. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=89044 Date accessed: 22 July 2014.


Highlight

(Min 3 characters)

September 1625

Sept. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori
Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
222. ALVISE CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The neutrality of Goch has at length been arranged. One thing may easily lead to another. It is true that the French and English ambassadors and I have heard nothing whatever about negotiations or formal proposals for a truce. I badly need Pasini's help at Brussels, or some other trustworthy correspondent.
The Dunkirkers have not started yet. The Infanta and Spinola are putting fresh reinforcements on board. Some think that this fleet will be sent against Ireland, as 800 Irish have gone upon it. It consists of twelve large ships and fifteen smaller ones.
The Hague, the 1st September, 1625.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Sept. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
223. ALVISE CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Mansfelt remains here vainly trying to raise troops. The ambassadors of the two crowns will not commit themselves. The two gentlemen whom he sent to France and England receive fair words, but are constantly put off. He says he will go to France and England to justify himself there and let things go on to destruction here.
The King of Denmark has advanced to the bishopric of Ferdem between the Weser and Alre, but has not moved further. This delay corresponds with the delay of help from England, said to be due to the plague. It is also due to the fears of the Princes of that Circle.
The Diet of Ulm makes the Palatine very anxious, as he fears the emperor will have a majority of votes. He has written asking the King of England to send Anstruther to protest against it. He obtained a promise, but they have not yet sent instructions to the ambassador with whom the Palatine wishes one of his councillors to go as more experienced in German affairs.
The wind shows signs of changing and probably Morton has crossed to England.
The Hague, the 1st September, 1625.
[Italian.]
Sept. 2.
Misc.
Cod. No. 64.
Venetian
Archives.
224. MARC' ANTONIO PADAVIN, Venetian Secretary in Germany, to the DOGE and SENATE.
They say here that the Elector of Saxony told an English ambassador, who asked him to interpose in favour of the Palatine, that he did not refuse, but wished first to know what satisfaction the Palatine proposed to give the emperor, who had incurred such heavy expenses, to recover his provinces. The answer has greatly pleased them here, and they think Saxony may be a good mediator.
Vienna, the 2nd September, 1625.
[Italian; copy.]
Sept. 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Svizzeri.
Venetian
Archives.
225. GIROLAMO CAVAZZA, Venetian Secretary with the Swiss, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The English Ambassador Wake arrived here after stopping some days at Coire, where in the Pittach of the three leagues, which assembled at his instance, he expressed the friendly disposition of the late and the present king and rejoiced at their recovered liberty, exhorting them to maintain it with union, vigour and zeal, showing their gratitude to the allied princes, who had restored it. I enclose a copy of his exposition.
I went at once to pay him my respects and offer my services. He reciprocated fully and begged me to tell him if he could render any service to the republic in these parts. Since then your Serenity's letters of the 22nd ult. have reached me about the incident at the late king's funeral. I seized an early opportunity to refer to the matter; but he told me he had heard nothing about it yet from the Secretary of State, though the letters written to the king on the subject must have arrived. He attributed the absence of news to the sudden removal of the Court from London on account of the plague, but he was sure the republic would receive every satisfaction. He said, Personal friends tell me that the incident happened by express design of the French ambassadors, without the fault of the Master of the Ceremonies, who was ill and would not let the Ambassador Pesaro know. I remarked that I did not see what object the French could have. Wake replied because they were extraordinary and did not want an ordinary there. I did not altogether accept this. He asked me when the extraordinary ambassadors would leave Venice; I said I thought they would wait because of the plague. He thought the king would wish them to attend his coronation in order to show the world his esteem for the republic. He also assured me that the republic would receive satisfaction in the other matters upon which your Serenity had asked him to write to the king, about Carlo Caimo and the English ships lading grain at Dragomestre and Candele.
The ambassador will stay here some days, having summoned a diet of the four towns, which will be held here next Monday. He told me he will confine himself to general terms, testifying the goodwill of his king and urging them to satisfy the allied princes with men and everything else. He recognised that their demand to move and close the pass against the German troops for the state of Milan was useless and inclines too much to peace. When he has done with the Swiss he will proceed to Piedmont and I observe that he expects other employment, as he does not seem certain about returning to Venice, although he left his household there.
Zurich, the 4th September, 1625.
[Italian.]
Sept. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
226. To the Ambassador at Rome and the like to the other Courts and to the Proveditori General.
The German troops delayed entering the Milanese owing to reports of sickness in Feria's army and of his illtreatment of their countrymen. The Savoyards have won some successes in attempts to relieve Verua. The Duke of Savoy has sent to France for help. Popnain's troops suffering from sickness at Riva; quarrels with Cerbelloni. Venetian precautions against spread of contagion. The colonels of the two Swiss regiments levied by the Ambassador Miron for the Valtelline have started. The Archduke Leopold is going to the new diet. The Nuncio Scappi, unable to prevent the levies or the passage of the regiment of Catholic Swiss for the Valley, has moderated his tone. The Ambassador Marini was summoned to appear at Genoa on a charge of rebellion; they say he will not do this, and so although he is French ambassador in Savoy he will be banished and his house demolished. We have chosen Alvise Zorzi to replace our Ambassador Valaresso, who is sick. We send all this for information.
Ayes, 77.Noes, 0.Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
Sept. 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Svizzeri.
Venetian
Archives.
227. GIROLAMO CAVAZZA, Venetian Secretary with the Swiss, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I again asked the English ambassador about the funeral incident. He said he had heard nothing from the Court; the plague stopped all business. I pressed the matter upon him.
He has made his proposals before the deputies of the four towns, speaking generally of the friendly disposition of his king and urging them to defend the Grisons in their own interests. The deputies thanked the king and recalled the help they had given for five years to the three leagues in men, money and munitions, while they are still serving the same cause and they reserve to themselves to report to their superiors to form a more definite resolution. The ambassador asked that this might be sent after him to Berne or Geneva, by which route he proposes to travel to Piedmont in three or four days. He told me that the Duke of Savoy said he would send President Montu here to treat with him and raise a levy of 4,000 Swiss, but the President had not come, so he had arranged with the Bernese and the other towns.
Zurich, the 7th September, 1625.
[Italian.]
Sept. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori
Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
228. ALVISE CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
All the twenty ships prepared for England are at sea blockading Dunkirk. They will stay there some days until the ordinary guard is reinforced, and will then proceed to Plymouth. They go slowly because in England they do the same, either because of the plague or to see what will happen in France.
The universal rumours of a truce have aroused suspicions in some of the government that some of the provinces are treating without the knowledge of the others, as happened in Barnevelt's time. They have therefore come to an understanding and promised to act together.
Mansfelt has left for his force, provided with 10,000 crowns upon England's credit.
The Hague, the 8th September, 1625.
[Italian.]
Sept. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
229. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Their Majesties are living in two private houses on either side of this arm of the sea, with a smaller following, and with pleasure, especially as it keeps healthy here, under the protection of God. (fn. 1)
I have visited the duke and found him worried about the state of affairs, which is increased by the lack of money and considerations of interest and reputation and the expenses which the king has. I made a special note of what he told me, with every sign of confidence. He spoke of Italy and asked about the Duke of Savoy. I said the Spaniards had evil designs on Piedmont, but his Highness's prudence had provided against them. He said he had heard of the invasion and he thought France would abandon the duke. This suspicion keeps them from moving here. I told him that every consideration persuaded France to support that prince. He remarked that at present the party against the Huguenots was in the ascendant; Savoy was not so sure of support as he hoped; the legate was detained and made much of, in short they would make peace with the Spaniards and war on the Huguenots.
I told him that matters so involved could not be unravelled in a moment; the Spaniards themselves would make difficulties; they would not let such favourable opportunities slip and France cannot yield without seriously injuring herself. But the duke betrayed his strong feeling at not being able to have France as an ally and his fear that she might abandon the common cause and her hostility to the Spaniards.
I remarked that if we could not get all we hoped from France, we must not conclude that everything was hopeless; we must support her, encourage her to move her forces and persuade the Huguenots to abandon their stubbornness.
He said they could not trust France after so many lapses. With a league with the States they would be quite safe; possibly France might take alarm. They had rejected all proposals for negotiation. I commended their prudence in not trusting the Spaniards, who had not kept their last promises. The king's sword was the best argument.
He went on to tell me that Mansfelt would come to Venice if we would have him. I remarked that he would not leave the two kings and he could gain nothing with us. The duke said he did not know what France would do; his king could not manage alone. The count was unhappy in Germany; in Holland he had no credit. The duke seemed inclined to give him up altogether and abandon the plans in Germany.
I pointed out how the king's reputation would suffer; the recovery of the Palatinate would be hopeless, the well disposed persons would remain at the mercy of the others, and gains elsewhere would not compensate for these losses.
The duke admitted freely that they could not support the expense; they cannot easily make conquests on land; they could do nothing if France does not help, and the loss of Germany will not touch the king here but the Most Christian.
He asked me how your Serenity had arranged with Mansfelt. I said that to abandon Mansfelt and open fresh negotiations would mean loss of time, as France had promised co-operation with Mansfelt in Germany, that seemed the easiest way. I spoke in order to find out their intentions here. The duke said they could never bring France to the point about a union; they always stopped by saying that France would at least contribute some money.
He told me that the fleet was ready and they only lacked the Dutch ships. The expense could be borne owing to the advantages they would derive.
The duke's account does not tally with the offices which he assured me the Count of Tillières passed with his Majesty about Mansfelt, to give him 8,000 foot and 2,000 horse. He said their decisions were constantly postponed as they had no money.
They change here with every accident. When parliament was dissolved they meant to support all the plans begun, as a point of honour. With their suspicions of France and of a rupture with the Huguenots, while affairs in Denmark are not going well, as in their poverty they cannot supply the money required, they think that to injure the Spaniards at sea, join with the States, approach the Huguenots for the peace of France, will suffice for their interests, and they will leave Germany to the care of the Most Christian as being most interested, and as they cannot restore the Palatine, to arrange some provision for him and see what advantages the fleet will bring.
The Dutch ambassadors here agree in abandoning Germany as hopeless and trusting to operations at sea. Perhaps they think it to their own advantage to interest this crown in what suits it best, and they may believe that necessity will force France to more open declarations. Such ideas do not suit the interests of Italy, which will incur great danger without a diversion.
Southampton, the 9th September, 1625.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Sept. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
230. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
After much delay the Secretary Morton has arrived from Holland, and since he arrived the Dutch ambassadors have begun to confer with the king's commissioners. At the first meeting they discussed without deciding anything. The king announced his care for the general interests. They discussed an agreement about the employment of the fleet and the advantage of getting France to join. They merely sketched out a plan to fill in. The ambassador stated that when his Majesty had a definite plan their twenty ships were ready to join the fleet here at once. If they wished to move in concert, they would require more time, because of provisions, while the season was advanced. The ministers here cannot decide to begin without an agreement with the States, and as they count upon having them always in alliance, they think it advantageous to carry out their plans without reciprocal caution.
However, they speak of sending out the ships at once and not losing the season; the bravest expeditions have been made in these months before. Accordingly they have sent some ships from Portsmouth to Plymouth, where the fleet is gathered. Colonel Cecil has left for that port. He has power to enlist more men in the counties near the fleet to fill up his companies. Two troops of horses have been seen go to those parts, one for draught, the other for a company of men. It is said that the king will review the fleet.
Despite all this, their zeal does not rise to the needs of such a great expedition. They will soon have to decide about its sailing. Meanwhile the cost of the ships and men is very heavy and money is exceedingly short. Many have been named for contributions, but as such things are extraordinary to the laws and customs here they are not carried out (ci sono molti aricordi per essationi ma essendo estraordinarii a queste legge et a questi costumi, non si effettuano).
They have sent letters to all the counties for a list of the richest inhabitants and have arranged to demand 120,000l. sterling from these, giving each one a receipt in the name of a loan, under the privy seal, which means with the force of a command and a caution. But they do not know if all will pay. This form will be the more felt as the first subsidy is now maturing. But without parliament and its contributions it is impossible to supply their needs. Accordingly they speak of convoking it again and they are laying the foundations for giving satisfaction to the estates, although with disdainful speech they maintain the sole authority of the king.
With the object of smoothing over the breach and give satisfaction by a popular decision they have published a rigorous proclamation to recall the king's subjects from the seminaries across the sea, and for the enforcement of the laws against the Jesuits and popish priests. (fn. 2) They give those abroad until Christmas to return, and the Jesuits and priests until the end of September to go. At all the outlets of the realm orders have been issued to show them courtesy at their embarcation, but on the expiry of the term, that the inquisitions and punishments be carried out in accordance with the laws. These decisions in no wise harmonise with the promises made to France, but by the orders for enforcement on the one side and pardon on the other they hope to succeed in satisfying everybody. But the French here complain and believe or at least assert that his Most Christian Majesty will take offence.
The affair of the ships granted to France is settled. The Ambassador Fiat has sent his secretary to report the obedience of the owners and to complain that the Vice-Admiral wished to return here. England granted the ships, feeling certain of peace in that kingdom. They grow angry and try to get them back when they fear the opposite and believe that these ships will only prove a further inducement for war.
The Most Christian having recently imparted his suspicions of Spinola's forces and designs upon Calais, asked the king here what help he would supply in case of attack. They replied with mingled readiness and circumspection that such an event would concern this crown; he should never be abandoned; all the ships of the fleet have their various tasks, but if his Majesty would return the ships, which are ill adapted for his service owing to the French want of skill with such instruments, they would make provision with them for any event.
Apparently the rumours of the enterprise are dying away; but Spinola stays at Dunkirk, orders provisions, has numerous guns and has collected 6,000 foot including a regiment of Irish. They are fitting out 30 ships and the Infanta in person is present at everything, including the construction of two forts, one contrary to the terms of peace with France.
The fear of the fleet I hear stirs that part and all Spain, but their provisions cause uneasiness, as the Dunkirkers from their natural advantages have always been the ones to hurt these islands. The Dutch are keeping their usual fleet at sea. Twelve English ships have gone out and have already prevented ships from sailing, going right up to the port and firing their guns.
They prohibit all Roman ecclesiastical functions to British subjects, and announce the execution of all the laws forbidding Jesuits and priests to frequent private houses, besides other orders, made separately with many rules styled ecclesiastical touching ministers and preachers. Catholic subjects are not allowed to serve the queen, hold appointments or introduce to the Court any uneasiness in religious matters (capitare alla Corte li sospetti di religione). These ships will serve to prevent harm from pirates, as although these are less numerous than reported, yet they have done much mischief in Cornwall, carrying off 300 persons. They take up their quarters in Lundy Island, in the mouth of the Severn between Wales and Cornwall, easy to fortify and hold, provided by its nature for the use of 500 inhabitants.
I have reported the negotiations of the Spanish agent and of Tallier, Gondomar's creature. The latter has made his proposals in writing in order to draw a reply in the same form; but they gave it through his Majesty's resident at Brussels and it is said to be a complete refusal. The agent raised three points, the obligation between the two crowns by treaty of peace to announce when they were sending out more than six ships. The king said he knew the condition; the fleet was prepared for his brother-in-law, and they could learn from him. Secondly, if the fleet attacked the Catholic's ships or territories, they would regard it as open war. The king said he could not help that. Thirdly, he represented the prejudice of closer union with the Dutch. The king replied that he knew what the good of his dominions required.
The news from Denmark is unsatisfactory owing to the king's dangerous fall from his horse, because Tilly has crossed the Weser and will restrain that force, and there is danger that he may win over that king and intimidate the circle by negotiation and by threats. Later news states that they are offering resistance, and that the King of Denmark is seeking union, which he has hitherto evaded, and they ask for a decision here, where they have already changed their minds. The Margrave of Brandenburg reports that they have approached him about the diet; he promises not to prejudice the general cause, indeed he encourages opposition to the diet, otherwise he declares that Cœsar will achieve his purpose with general consent and will set up a contribution to maintain an army against the foreigners, which means that France and England will not be allowed to interfere with the balance and liberty of Germany. His Majesty's ambassador has returned from Sweden with news of the successes of that king in Livonia and his steady goodwill towards the public cause, urging union and promising to do his share. If there are any negotiations his ambassador will open them, who is here for congratulations.
To-day M. de Blenville will arrive here, ambassador extraordinary of the Most Christian.
I have your Serenity's commands of the 26th July and the 9th August. I shall find it hard to provide wheat owing to the scarcity of this unfertile year and because the plague has stopped all trading.
I could not have better assurances from the ministers here, and especially the duke, about the ill behaviour of the Master of the Ceremonies, but they have not determined upon the remedy. I know that Conway is to present Wake's offices and impart all my instances afresh to the king, but this remains in the air like everything else. I have persisted to prevent the matter being forgotten.
As his Excellency Zorzi will have started on his journey several days ago, and his Excellency Contarini and I have arranged together about our exchange, I beg your Serenity to let me know which route to take, and what I must do to uphold the dignity of the State and to preserve the scanty remains of my diminished fortune. I have spent freely here on the double mourning ordered by the king, the expenses and liveries for the marriage, and finally the plague and my wanderings during this last period have increased the burden. After a short truce the season threatens me with my old indisposition. I will return by the long route.
Southampton, the 9th September, 1625.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Sept. 13.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
231. To the Ambassadors in France and the like to the other Courts and to the Generals.
On the 19th of May last we directed all our ministers to deal with all matters touching Rome and the Valtelline in separate letters with the sign for the expulsion of those interested. As this has not been fully observed, we repeat the order.
Ayes, 92.Noes, 0.Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Sept. 13.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
232. To the Ambassador at Rome and the like to the other Courts and to the Proveditori General.
The Duke of Savoy is at Crescentino, where he valiantly helps the defence of Verua, causing much embarrassment to the Spaniards. Feria has captured Casal Borgon, a useful acquisition, as it cuts off their supplies. A sortie from Verua resulted in heavy losses to both sides. The duke succeeded in frustrating a Spanish countermine. Feria is losing hope of taking Verua, but he expects 5,000 foot from the Genoese.
The English Ambassador Wake, after staying some days at Coire, has reached Zurich. In the Pitach of the three leagues he expressed the goodwill of the late and present kings to their interests, congratulated them on their recovered liberty and urged them to defend it vigorously while showing their gratitude to the allied princes. At Zurich he summoned a diet of the four towns. He will express the goodwill of his king and urge them to do everything in their power to satisfy the allied princes. He will then proceed to Piedmont.
The Swiss levies are delayed. Mansfelt's troops who are coming to serve the Spaniards have arrived near Constance. Their captains have been unable to restrain their excesses. The cavalry was well mounted, but the infantry not so good. Leopold's departure is confirmed. All this is for information.
Ayes, 92.Noes, 0.Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Sept. 13.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori
Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
233. ALVISE CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Admiral Nassau, by order of the prince, has written to England that he is ready with his fleet whenever they make the sign that the rest of the fleet is ready to start. The Infanta and Spinola remain so long near the frontier with the evident object of alarming England and France with their forces, and in the hope of winning the former by negotiation.
The Hague, the 15th September, 1625.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Charles was at Beaulieu in the Forest, passing his time in hunting, while the queen was staying in the earl of Southampton's residence at Tichfield on the other side of Southampton Water. Birch: Court and Times of Charles I, vol i, page 47.
2 Proclamation of the 14th August st. vet. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1625–6, page 84.