Venice
November 1625, 1-15

Sponsor

Institute of Historical Research

Publication

Author

Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1913

Pages

195-215

Annotate

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

Citation Show another format:

'Venice: November 1625, 1-15', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 19: 1625-1626 (1913), pp. 195-215. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=89048 Date accessed: 20 September 2014.


Highlight

(Min 3 characters)

November 1625

Nov. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
286. To the Ambassador at Rome and the like to the other Courts and to the Proveditori General.
We sent word last week of the alliance concluded between the King of Great Britain and the States of the Netherlands. The last ordinary confirms this and that it is against the King of Spain; is to last until the restoration of the Palatine's dominions and vote and it will continue for at least fifteen years, neither side making peace or any truce without the other; they leave room for others to enter; they leave three months for ratification. They have decided to make a large naval force in order to keep Spain and Flanders in a state of siege; the States will bear a fourth of the expenses and have a fourth of the booty, but the English claim all conquests and will garrison them. The English admiral will command with the Dutch and his lieutenant on the Council of War. Both sides will supply munitions of war.
The parties will supply a force of 25 to 30,000 foot and 4 to 5,000 horse, with guns etc., to work in concert, but each under its own officers. Each side must help the other in case of invasion. The King of England has recalled his agent from Brussels.
Gabor's movements are making them uneasy at the Imperial Court. He is said to have gone to Cassovia with 4,000 foot and might easily prevent the diet. The Duke of Savoy has been joined by the Constable, who shows great vigour despite his 84 years. His Highness is at Turin to repel an expected attack of the Spaniards, who recently suffered from the explosion of a mine. The forces of the league are progressing favourably in the Valtelline. We have sent materials for constructing the fort near Tirano.
Ayes, 108.Noes, 2.Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
Nov. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
287. To the AMBASSADOR PRIULI at Turin.
Report that the duke is to confer with the cardinal legate. Progress in the Valtelline. The Ambassador Wake has sent word by his secretary of his offices with the Grisons and their reply; and also his offices with the Swiss at Zurich and Berne. You will thank him at the first opportunity on our behalf so that he may recognise that we value his merits and wish him every satisfaction.
Ayes, 82.Noes, 0.Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
Nov. 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
288. ZORZI GIUSTINIAN, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The English ambassador came to see me the other day about the consulage. He said that as the matter concerned the dignity of his king, the maintenance of an ancient privilege of English ships and the interests of all his countrymen and the ambassadors resident at the Porte, whose expenses were paid solely by these duties and the consulage, he had to do his utmost to avoid such prejudice, but owing to his desire to live in friendly relations with me he had delayed action, in the hope that we might arrange some friendly compromise without recourse to the Turks; but on the previous day he had heard from his consul at Aleppo of fresh encroachments by ours, preventing him from exercising jurisdiction over British subjects, protecting the purser of the ship in his own house, so the matter seemed to him to have passed all bounds and he had determined to apply to the Sultan and the Caimecan. However he had come to let me know, although I had not shown him the same courtesy when I obtained the order from the Caimecan.
I tried to show that his consul was manifestly in the wrong and to dissuade him from applying to the Turks, even offering to refer to the sole arbitrament of his own king. His refusal clearly proves the baselessness of his claims. I said I did not think he would imitate his ill advised consul in having recourse to the Turks. I had only gone to get the Caimecan to protect our consul. His Excellency ought to make his consul desist from such groundless claims, and by imprisoning the purser he only wished to prevent the ship from sailing, and thus compelled our consul to act.
All this did not move the ambassador from his purpose of appealing to the Caimecan. I said I should have to oppose him. He claimed nothing but their capitulations, which the Cadi had violated. I told him that his king would certainly not approve of having recourse to the Turkish ministers in such a matter. He declared that he had supreme authority at the Porte in these questions, and the matter should be referred to him and to me. I said I had no such authority from your Serenity, and besides he was an interested party.
He tried to persuade me that his interests were public, not private. I greatly fear that his master may be ill informed upon the subject, especially as a large number of Englishmen who are interested in ships, claim that they ought to be free to serve whom they please in matters of trade, so I fancy this charge upon foreign goods laded upon them is an invention of the ambassador here and their consuls for their own private interests, rather than a concession of their king, and that is why they have refused his arbitration. They exact four percent. for this, they have not the same object as your Serenity, to keep the trade of their merchants as free as possible from charges, but simply consider their own interests, and no arrangements made between themselves ought to prejudice others.
Seeing that I could not persuade the ambassador, I have approached the Caimecan again, and I hope that the ambassador will not win him over with bribes, as he hints, though even if he does I fancy he will find that the ship has already sailed, and he and the consul will have failed in their attempts to stop it.
Achindi, the 2nd November, 1625.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Nov. 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
289. ZORZI GIUSTINIAN, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Montealbano, who came about the truce, is still here, though he said he was going. He tried hard to get a letter for the Catholic king. He has also tried to make an impression through the wives of the Chief Vizier and the Captain Pasha. The English ambassador told me that he had 6,000 sequins sent by the Viceroy of Naples and jewels to present to the latter lady, and with the emperor's resident he had secretly gone to the Captain Pasha, offering rich bribes. The ambassador told me that he could not join the other ambassadors in making representations to the Caimecan, owing to his absence, but he had drawn up a paper showing the Sultan all the arguments against a truce.
Achindi, the 2nd November, 1625.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Nov. 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
290. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The fleet left on the 18th ult. very strongly equipped and having a large number of gentlemen adventurers on board, under the command of Cecil, in the capacity of marshal instead of admiral. It appears that they had no plans at first, but they have decided to hurt Spain, and have sailed in that direction with a favourable wind. The first rendezvous seems off S. Sebastian, but their plan is to be carried out beyond Cape Finisterre; they do not name the spot, as they want the commander to seize the best opportunity and if he cannot take the land he is to pillage and lay waste. Twelve ships have stayed behind, six Dutch and six of the king to lade refreshments and to supply the fleet.
They are beginning to make arrangements for the second fleet. It is hoped that these forces will have better fortune than those before Dunkirk, as a storm has scattered them. Five Dutch ships and three of the king were driven on the rocks, though they hope to save them; but it has raised the blockade and upset the plans of burning the ships, which may come out and damage their interests here (fn. 1)
The Duke of Buckingham has not yet embarked, and this accident may delay him longer, as he must have a safe passage owing to his importance and because it seems that besides the money for Mansfelt and Denmark he will take gold and jewels worth many thousands of crowns, by pledging which he hopes to obtain money in Amsterdam to supply their needs and to delay the meeting of parliament as much as possible and as his safety requires. He delayed his departure in waiting for the money and he left the Court early in order to break off the unpleasant negotiations with the French ambassador, and have the seals taken from the Lord Keeper, who through not being an ally of the duke has become suspect to the king also. He is a prudent man, believed to belong to the Spanish party and above all because he ventured to speak and advise the king contrary to Buckingham's advice. His removal is announced, but he keeps his post, though they say it is only for a few days. (fn. 2)
For all this the French ambassador does not cease to press the business for which he came to this Court, without profit and with greater ill feeling. He has preferred a request in writing to have Soubise's ship, I spoke of, and the Council sent him a written answer requesting him to point out to his Most Christian Majesty that the king, owing to the friendly relations existing between the two crowns, would not see Soubise and that in everything he will have regard for the interests of the Most Christian. This reply did not please the ambassador, who sent it back by the bearer, so they complain here of his discourtesy.
There are other mutual grievances, the king having wished to appoint Protestant officials in the queen's household, and the ambassador directed the Chamberlain Tillières, by command of the Most Christian, not to agree to this, as he has to take the oaths. The ambassador refused to deal with Gordon, who took the messages, as unequal in rank. (fn. 3) These events coincide with other circumstances full of bitterness and dissatisfaction, the feeling being the greater because the persecution of the Catholics is being effected, more particularly by the exaction of the money penalties. The ambassador was unable to obtain an order to stay the departure of the ecclesiastics on the ground of the ports being closed.
They have held various councils, but all seem agreed against the Catholics, and the king seems to mean to have his way in his own household, and in the queen's to see that at least she is served by his own subjects and not by Frenchmen alone.
Accordingly the ambassador makes no progress in his affairs, indeed they find grievances upon which to base their refusals. With these they have sent an agent of the Secretary Conway to France and to learn what effect the king's representations have had there, and why they sent the ambassador, although his Majesty deprecated the mission. They do not know of these affairs, because they believe the king's agent to have been drowned many days ago, who should have brought the information.
Such are the reasons why the ambassador meets with no response, indeed they rather mistrust him, because the Most Christian does not regard favourably his ambassadors extraordinary, when they return from here because they may have leaned to English designs.
These differences may seriously affect public interests; but it is thought that the duke may go to France and try to arrange everything, as in his instructions he has power to go there, but it is impossible to be sure owing to past offences, as they are not preparing the way. The Earl of Carlisle told me that the King of Great Britain would sacrifice everything for the public welfare and he meant to punish Spanish insolence with his fleet, but it was necessary that France and Italy should eliminate Spanish influence from the Court of Rome, push on in that province and then contribute all together to the war in Germany and aid the Palatine's restoration. Such are their plans, but I do not see how they can be realised. He said he knew France pretended they could not win Rome because England keeps persecuting the Catholics. France was mistaken if they expected to control this government and thought that they had made a marriage of interest and not of State. He hinted he might go to Italy and to your Serenity; he would urge the continuation of the war and further the invasion of the dominions of the Catholic king. He told me in the strictest confidence that the king had decided to send 60,000 crowns to present to the Porte to frustrate the Spanish negotiations with the Turks. They had sent back a Chiaus richly rewarded. I incline to think they mean to move the pirates with the advantage of the fleet, rather than proceed to the Porte with such a rich present.
The Agent of the Palatine here states that the emperor has thanked the Duke of Wirtemberg for his overtures to England and his proposed embassies to the Kings of Great Britain and Denmark, but it is not known yet whether the proscribed Palatine will adopt an attitude of submission.
The king has heard of four proposals that Caesar thinks of laying before the diet; first that the deputies of the empire shall ratify all that has been done up to the present against the Count Palatine and his accomplices, as well as what was done recently at the assembly of Ratisbon; secondly that the electoral dignity shall be bestowed upon the Elector of Bavaria and his family; thirdly that all who oppose these desires shall be declared enemies of the empire; fourthly that they shall raise contributions against the King of France and his allies to maintain the war in Italy.
I fancy if the king's ambassador goes he will confine himself to two points, to remonstrate that the restoration of the Palatine alone can restore peace to the empire, and if this does not succeed to protest the harm that will arise from the necessity of fighting for this restitution.
At the instance of the Duke of Savoy they have appointed four commissioners. Meanwhile the secretary of the Ambassador Scaglia has gained a slight advantage, namely that the queen and Madame de Piedmont shall write to each other as sisters, whereas the latter writes as an inferior to the Queens of France and Spain.
The king's agent with the Infanta has crossed the sea; he pleaded private affairs as a reason for leaving.
A courier has arrived from France to back the instances of the ambassador, asking not for the one ship of Soubise but all.
The friends of the Master of the Ceremonies, supported by the French ambassador, have already moved for his reinstatement, but I have prevented this and succeeded in having another appointed, but it will be wise to settle this business as soon as possible and leave the king's hands free.
The Court is to move, but we do not know whither. I shall try to send my despatches more regularly.
Salisbury, the 3rd November, 1625.
Postscript.—The secretary of Savoy has been despatched with a reply in writing expressing his Majesty's desire to assist his Highness, mentioning the fleet and the needs of this realm, and saying they must first know how the fleet fares; the Abbot Scaglia may come and they will treat with him. But the Earl of Carlisle whispered to the secretary that the ambassador must not leave until he heard and they had things more ready. This does not amount to a refusal, but one can build nothing upon it.
The damage done by the storm is greater than I wrote, but they think the Dunkirkers suffered no less, and they did not come out for that reason. Accordingly they are equipping a reinforcement here, and the duke on his passage proposed to inspect this fleet.
Two ships laden with fireworks are in the port of Dover. The king has given the captain 40,000l. for bringing them. I am assured that if this fleet cannot achieve anything this side of the strait, the general can go on to Barcelona; they think that side of Spain will be less prepared. The news of their operations will come by way of Spain and France. I also hear that the Chiaus has promised to have the fleet victualled upon payment, and they say that the pirates were ready to take advantage of this opportunity.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Nov. 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
291. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Returns grateful thanks for the permission to return home. Salisbury, the 3rd November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
292. MARC' ANTONIO MOROSINI, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Savoyard ambassador here has letters from England from his Secretary Baroccio of the 20th ult. relating his arrival at Salisbury, his reception by the king, the duke and the Earls of Carlisle and Holland. He reports how they admired the fortitude of the Duke of Savoy and his sons in resisting the Spaniards and defending Verua. He had more than one meeting with the duke and the earls begging them to let the fleet or part of it go into the Mediterranean or the waters of Genoa. They said it was impossible as the fleet had left and they regretted that they could not serve his Highness. Baroccio then restricted his demand to a grant of at least 15 or 20 ships, according to the offers made by the duke to the ambassador when he was in Paris. This request they neither granted nor refused. The duke said he thought it would be difficult, but they could not let him go empty away or refuse a matter of such slight importance to so worthy a prince. They must await the return from France of a secretary skilled in naval matters, who should return in a day or two, and then they will decide. Meanwhile he has delayed his departure for Holland.
They also spoke of surprising the island of Corsica, and the duke seemed to think highly of this, and asked for particulars of the ports and fortifications there and if they could hold it or be obliged to sack the place and then abandon it.
Baroccio further writes that the fleet has sailed, numbering 150 ships, victualled for ten months, carrying 22,000 infantry to land, still leaving sufficient sailors to defend each ship. War is declared against Spain, and they are preparing another fleet of eighty ships to sail in May and a third for September. The first, on the day it left Plymouth, captured twelve ships of the Hanse towns laden with rich goods for Spain and 60,000 crowns in cash for Spanish merchants; all the booty was devoted to the use of the fleet, and they let the ships and men go.
Of the duke's journey to Holland, he reports that common rumour declares he is going to negotiate with the Kings of Denmark and Sweden and the Protestant princes of Germany for a closer union with his king and to ask them to enter the league arranged with the Dutch to make war on the House of Austria until the Palatine is fully restored and all the princes concerned in the league are fully satisfied. But others believe that he is going on purpose to see the Queen of Bohemia, to tell her what he has done for her service and cast himself upon her favour, which he greatly desires to escape the hatred of the people and the members of parliament in particular.
The reasons which alienated that princess from the duke were first, his protection of the Catholics at the instance of the French, and delaying so long to decide on the sailing of the fleet. I have had a letter of the same date containing some of the things I have written and further important particulars, of which I enclose a copy.
You will see that the disputes with this country do not diminish while their suspicions increase, and it will require great efforts to reconcile them. I have spoken to the cardinal in particular, with due circumspection. He said the fault was not theirs; they had received no reply to all their offers; the ambassador appointed had not arrived, although Blenville had been sent there; the Most Christian could not run after others, especially when treated so casually.
I tried to soothe him, and pointed out the advantages the king could derive, and how the French marriage had impelled the English king to declare against the Spaniards. The cardinal seemed impressed with what I said and promised to think it over; but he repeated several times that he feared Carlisle had made mischief, he was high in favour, and they must try to win him over.
St. Germains, the 3rd November, 1625.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Enclosed
in the
preceding
despatch.
293. The king and ministers announce open war with Spain; they send out 150 ships against the Spaniards, which have captured twelve; they are blockading Dunkirk with the Dutch; they have recalled all the English serving the Spaniards; they have recalled the resident at Brussels and have made an alliance for fifteen years with the Dutch, in which England undertakes to send out fleets now, in May and a third in September. So they say here that they are at war with the Spaniards. England is now committed against the Spaniards at sea. M. de Blenville is here. He wants an establishment of Catholics in the realm and that they shall devote their attention to Germany and join in helping Denmark and Sweden. But he has put his foot in it, because they will not take their orders from France here, and they do not trust the French, especially as the King of Denmark complains that they promise a great deal but do nothing and they want peace with the Rochellese there at all costs. Soubise is in England; the king does not see him, but has sent and provides him with food. They profess great indebtedness to your Excellency about the French Huguenots, and the Earl of Carlisle in particular spoke to me about it very feelingly.
Salisbury, the 20th October, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 4.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
294. The Ambassador of the States came into the Collegio and said:
I must tell your Serenity that with the last despatch I have received letters from persons of some consideration in our state telling me that since the loss of Breda two most important events have happened, one the return of some ships from la Baia with the soldiers and officers who behaved in such cowardly fashion and caused the loss of those places which had been so fortunately taken, against whom rigorous proceedings were taken to make an example, and the other that through the extraordinary ambassador of the States who has been in England a long while an offensive and defensive league has been arranged between his Majesty and the States, to continue until the King of Spain declares our provinces absolutely free, or at least to last fifteen years, neither party to make peace or a truce without the knowledge and consent of the other. There are other conditions which I do not know, because I have not received public letters, but this is the principal point and with France also they have arranged to make no peace or truce without the consent and knowledge of his Most Christian Majesty. It is clear that this league will serve the common cause and prevent your Serenity from believing rumours to the contrary, and I can maintain my credit with the merchants because the States have always rendered a good account of their proceedings.
The doge replied: Our ambassador has also given us the same advices. We rejoice particularly at the league concluded between the States and England as for the general advantage in the present state of affairs, and we have instructed our ambassador to congratulate their High Mightinesses. We thank you for the information you have given us and commend the policy of the States and their services to the general weal.
[Italian.]
Nov. 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Napoli.
Venetian
Archives.
295. PIETRO VICO and PIER ANTONIO MARIONI, Venetian Secretaries at Naples, to the DOGE and SENATE.
An extraordinary courier from Spain brings urgent orders from the king to the Duke of Alva to send to those waters with all speed all the sailing ships that they can, as they fear that the English fleet will attempt some considerable enterprise upon his Majesty's dominions. His Excellency is willing to obey, but being without ships, sailors or money, he does not know what to do. He holds councils every day, but can find no way. He stopped five ships, which were to lade wheat for this city, and they are arming them as quickly as possible.
Naples, the 4th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
296. To the Ambassador in France.
We have heard with satisfaction of the conclusion of the league between England and the States and of the open declaration of war by England against Spain. This is very important, as the United Provinces which have been looking about them since the loss of Breda, are now moving with vigour. Denmark is encouraged, and the Most Christian has great opportunities afforded to him.
In commending this step taken by the two powers in general and with special reference to the said affairs and the advantages arising therefrom, you will introduce remarks when you have an opportunity calculated to dispose his Majesty and his Ministers favourably to the overtures which we understand will be made for the purpose of placing the Most Christian monarch gloriously in the forefront in current affairs, his proper place. In this state of affairs we direct you to point out the advantages of conciliating the two allies aforesaid and of removing grounds for mistrust, by giving pardon and peace to those of the religion, the king's subjects, who are inclined to submit, while a continuance of these disturbances may seriously upset the laudable designs of the two powers and the useful maxim they have set themselves not to move on the score of religion. A consideration of these circumstances and others of even greater importance will, we feel sure, induce his Majesty to incline to show clemency to his own subjects and so benefit the general cause. The same applies to an endeavour to smooth ruffled feelings and encourage good relations between the establishments of the royal couple in England and their individual members, so that fruits for the general advantage may issue from this noble alliance such as everyone anticipated, and that this may be attributed to the good qualities of that government. You will advance these considerations to the queen mother in particular, especially as we understand that they shot at a preacher who intruded into her apartments to deliver a sermon, since it is evident that evil results may spring from such incidents calculated to disturb for ever cordial relations between those two crowns, to the advantage of those who are ill affected towards them.
The King of England has gone to see his fleet, which is all ready. This confirms the zeal with which they are taking up the cause.
Ayes, 99.Noes, 0.Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Nov. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
297. To the Ambassador in England.
The day before yesterday we received four packets from you, two of the 23rd September, one of the 7th and one of the 15th ult. We commend your diligence in obtaining orders from the king for them to pass and in sending them by France. The letters bring us news of the highest importance, showing his Majesty's firm determination to carry through the alliance with the States, which is the best way at present of encouraging the hopes of the princes interested. We doubt not that your efforts have helped to induce them to take this important step, and the States have acknowledged as much. It shows that the republic is taking the right course for the public weal. We gather that his Majesty will lose no time in showing the world and the Spaniards in particular that in arranging this alliance he means not only show but active operations, as we hear the fleet has left port, of reprisals at sea and the recall of his subjects and of his minister at Brussels, while they think of dismissing the Spanish ambassador and the Infanta's agent there, and that he will do everything in his own name. With regard to the letters of marque issued to privateers, we should like to know if they contain a limitation to the grantees to confine their operations to this side of the Strait, or if they are allowed to pass it. In the latter case they may inflict damage upon friendly powers, contrary to his Majesty's intention. You will find out about this and with tact; without the slightest sign of uneasiness you will try and make sure that the ships of our subjects in particular and their goods will be respected. You will perceive the delicacy of the matter, and so you must show the more circumspection.
We observe from your letters the object of the king and his ministers, through the Dutch, to interest the King of France in all these affairs. That would be admirable if obtainable, but if it is not, his Majesty and the States must not on that account abandon what they can easily accomplish with their own united forces; while the Most Christian has declared that he means to push on in Italy with all generosity; and the results appear. You must keep two leading points in mind, one, that the friendship between England and the States shall grow steadily stronger; the other that they must unite to maintain and increase the friendship with France. You will encourage this upon every occasion that presents itself. We think it would greatly assist the public weal if that king would use his influence to induce the Rochellese to give up their private interests and submit to the king's magnanimity; to hold out obstinately cannot help them and only hampers the action of the Most Christian against those who do nothing but sow discord and disturb the peace of France.
We wish to have full details of the negotiations of Sweden, Denmark and others at that court and the attitude of his Majesty and his ministers thereto, and if the latter favour good relations between the two kings. This is a point of no small moment, especially in Denmark's present position against Tilly, with Sweden armed and ready to pursue his plans, which must need constitute a strong diversion.
We shall wait to hear of the negotiations of the French ambassador. As we believe his intentions to be good, you will help him, though without involving our republic, advocating confidential relations between the two monarchs, though as if speaking for yourself. From your abilities we promise ourselves favourable results. We highly appreciate your operations; this should console you in your afflictions and you may rest assured that we desire to relieve you, and perhaps you will not have to wait long.
That 300 ducats be given to the representatives of the Ambassador Pesaro for couriers and the carriage of letters, for which he shall render account.
Ayes, 82.Noes, 1.Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
Nov. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
298. To the Ambassador at Rome and the like to the other Courts.
On Saturday last our officers arrested a Frenchman carrying two pistols who proved to be cook of the French ambassador, at whose request the man was released by the Council of Ten, though he had forfeited his life by the laws. The same evening they gave him back his weapons. On the following morning the ambassador appeared in the Collegio, and expressed his thanks for the favour, but went on to complain of the way in which it had been done, claiming the indemnity of ambassadors and their households, asking that this might be observed for the future and demanding compensation from the officers. Out of regard for the ambassador and the Most Christian we did all that was possible in this case and to do more would only aggravate abuses. We decided to reply, as enclosed, pointing out the extraordinary nature of the favour granted and how impossible it is for us to countenance such excesses. If you hear the matter discussed you will be able to put our case in the proper light. We may add that the ambassador was quite satisfied when the reply was read to him.
Ayes, 126.Noes, 0.Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
Nov. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
299. LUNARDO MORO, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
When it seemed that the English fleet had become a myth, although news of its sailing came every day, on the morning of the 5th a courier arrived from Cadiz, sent by Don Francisco Giron, reporting that they had sighted 150 sail coming in that direction, but owing to the bad weather he could not send to observe them. On the following day another courier came with news that this was the English fleet, and that eighty ships had entered the bay. This news has stirred the whole Court at Madrid and one may say all Spain. The leading nobles and young men of spirit are all hastening in that direction. I cannot learn further particulars, as no letters come except for the king, and the weather is so bad, raining day and night that I cannot leave the house to see any one. Many rumours circulate about the size of this fleet, and the number of ships and men. Some say the wind drove some ships in and the others would not enter; others say they meant to enter and create a diversion; some think they mean to destroy the bridge and cut off the forts recently erected. But all this is mere gossip. The fleet has certainly arrived at a time when they are well fortified here in every part and when they have over a hundred large ships very well armed, though some of these are shut up in that very port of Cadiz since their return from Brazil, and cannot escape. Don Federico di Toledo with the 40 ships with him at Malaga was to go to Cape St. Vincent, and the 50 at Lisbon were to go to meet the [plate] fleet; but now this hostile fleet has come between them I do not know what they will decide. If it had come four days earlier it would have fallen in with the fleet from the East Indies.
Madrid, the 8th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
300. MODERANTE SCARAMELLI, Venetian Secretary in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The English Ambassador Wake has heard from the English ambassador at the Hague of the alliance arranged between the King of Great Britain and the States. It is also said that instructions have been prepared in England for him to invite the most serene republic and the duke to enter this league. He will not speak to the duke before the letters arrive, as he had received none since he left Venice, so he told me when I went to thank him on the ambassador's behalf for the offices performed by his secretary about his negotiations in Switzerland and the Grisons. He told me the duke had charged him to ask the Bernese for 4,000 foot by virtue of their league with him, for which money was ready at Lyons; he surrendered his power of appointing the officers, and so hoped to satisfy the Swiss.
Turin, the 8th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
301. MODERANTE SCARAMELLI, Venetian Secretary in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The English ambassador showed me a book which had come into his hands, slandering the princes allied with France about the troubles of Italy, and endeavouring in a diabolical manner to persuade the king that the war is unjust and he cannot conscientiously take part in it. The book is entitled Admonitio Christiana. The duke was sending it to France through him to be seen by the Sorbonne and publicly burned. They had found copies in Venice. From the style they thought the author was Gaspar Scopio, who lives at the Court of Rome in a priest's habit, and has previously been paid to write similar scurrilous compositions. (fn. 4)
Turin, the 8th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
302. LUNARDO MORO, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Eighty galleons, all English, really anchored in the bay of Cadiz and at once took possession of a fort called il Puntal, between the bridge and Cadiz. Presumably they did this of set purpose. The fort made a show of resistance, but after planting their guns they soon captured it, killing all the garrison of forty except two, who were set free to report that the English had not come as enemies of the King of Spain, but to hunt for another Palatinate, as they flew no flag but the Palatine's. Some say they landed 4,000, others 10,000 foot. The letters of Don Fernando say they also landed some horses, but these are probably for the guns. They also took possession of a small island near the mouth of the port called Matogorda. Everyone believes that they intend to cut the bridge, which joins Cadiz to the mainland, which is fortified on the inside, and which they considered safe from the outside owing to the rock itself. They therefore think the English will not succeed, though they may cut the peninsula at the narrowest part where there is access to the sea.
In the interior of the port are eight galleys and 16 galleons of the fleet returned from Brazil, which are blockaded by the English. In the port of Sta. Maria, opposite Cadiz, is the Duke of Fernandina with three galleys, he being commander of the squadron. He can go in and out as he likes, as the English ships are too far away and the wind does not serve them to prevent him. They say he has already gone out and returned three times, to reconnoitre. It is rumoured that the English have also sacked Xeres, a port between Sta. Maria and S. Lucar, but this is not confirmed. In the general opinion another squadron of the English force has gone to meet the fleet. If they have no ships besides these they are very ill advised as they could not have attacked a place better prepared for defence with more warlike inhabitants. They may have expected to fall in with the fleets from Brazil and the East Indies, but both these plans failed, and the Spaniards hope that the English will incur a disaster, as if the wind does not change they will not be able to get out and these westerly winds at this season usually last months, and that Don Federigo of Toledo, who passed the Strait of Gibraltar from Malaga, had been obliged to turn back for that reason.
Nevertheless all Spain is stirred. I hear that the king himself wished to mount his horse last Saturday and go off thither, stamps his feet and cannot keep still, but the Council would not let him go, saying that it did not behove the king to move without an army worthy of his presence. However, they propose to form one with all possible despatch, making Don Agostin Messia lieutenant-general, who is nearly 70, and has served in France and Flanders and is a great favourite of the count. They hope in a month to have 30,000 foot in Andalusia, 20,000 in Castile and another force near the Pyrenees. The French ambassador declares that his master has never had any intention of breaking absolutely with this crown and had done everything to prevent this fleet from sailing. Nevertheless they are calling to arms throughout this kingdom, although they do not seem to have the slightest fear, saying that their enemies are the enemies of God and they are fighting for the faith. To-day at mass they recited the prayer, Deus qui conteris bella, and others asking for Divine help, omitted since the return of the fleet from Brazil. They derive immense consolation from seeing everyone so eager in offering life and goods in support of the monarchy.
Madrid, the 9th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 10.
Senato,
Secreta,
Dispacci,
Spagna,
Venetian
Archives.
303. LUNARDO MORO, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I met the French ambassador at the house of the nuncio. He repeated that his master did not approve of the sailing of the English fleet and knew nothing about it. He thought it a youthful unconsidered escapade of the King of England.
I afterwards went to congratulate the Count of Olivares on his appointment as general of the cavalry. Of the English fleet, he said he did not fear them, as they were fully prepared every- where. The king was a Catholic and felt sure of Divine assistance. They had desired nothing more earnestly than to see Don Federigo of Toledo reach Cadiz with the Brazil fleet, yet if he had done so, he would have been lost there upon the arrival of the English fleet, but God willed that the wind should take him to a place where no fleet from the Indies had ever gone before.
From what I gather they will not remain on the defensive, but will attempt some diversion, probably against Ireland, and the Dunkirk fleet may be destined for this. The wife of the Duke of Pastrana, who is sister of the Duke of Medina Sidonia, says that letters from her brother reached her that evening with news that 6,000 foot landed on the island where the English are, have fought them and slain 500, the others returning to their ships. But the count says this is not true, though they have recovered a position occupied by the English. I think this is one of the trenches protecting the bridge, and they are probably fighting for this, and reinforcements will have arrived there.
We hear that the fleet of Portugal is all ready to attack the English. In that case the ships blockaded in the port will take their share. The fort of Cadiz has been twice supplied with provisions and men by the galleys of the Duke of Ferrandina. The Count of Lemos has gone post into Galicia and Don Pedro di Toledo has gone to the French frontier.
Madrid, the 10th November, 1625.
[Italian; the part in italics dciphered.]
Nov. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
304. LUNARDO MORO, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
A rumour is current among the common people that now the English have attacked these realms, the pope will come out openly on this side. Although the nuncio laughs at this he does not contradict it, and he even said that the republic would have to do the same, if this went on. I hear they have an idea at the palace that your Excellencies are contributing 10,000 crowns a month to the English force.
Madrid, the 10th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
305. MARC ANTONIO MOROSINI, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Last week we heard that a serious storm had dispersed the Dutch and English fleet before Dunkirk with the loss of four large Dutch ships and two English ones. The rest gathered after the storm and went in chase of the Austrian fleet, which seized the opportunity to escape from the port. They say it is going to Spain, being summoned by that king for the defence of those shores, whither they have also summoned all their ships from Italy and elsewhere owing to their fear of the great English fleet which sailed recently.
Poissy, the 12th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
306. LUNARDO MORO, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Another courier has arrived from Cadiz this evening, sent by Don Fernando Giron, with the news that they have inflicted a severe defeat on the English, so that they have been obliged to abandon the captured positions as well as their guns and horses, and return to their ships with loss, caused mostly by lances and pikes, as owing to the heavy rain neither side could use muskets. They say they cannot tell the number of the slain owing to the bad weather and nightfall, but they say it may amount to 400 by the sword and as many more drowned. They say nothing about the Spanish losses. They say the Duke of Ossuna was the first to attack with 1,000 of his vassals, and he amazed every one by his intrepidity. The king when he heard the news said he was as mad as his father. They say that the fleet has not departed because the weather does not permit, and that is just what they desire, because the Portugal fleet may arrive at the mouth of the port at any moment, and is only detained by contrary winds, while Federigo di Toledo with the remainder of the Brazil fleet, amounting to some 30 or 40 ships, may also arrive, and they have ordered the royal galleon and the Sicilian galleys to go there; but the same wind cannot serve both squadrons. In the bay of Cadiz are the 11 galleys I reported, 18 galleons of the Brazil fleet, six galleasses and six other good ships though not completely equipped. The English made an unsuccessful attempt to burn the galleons. We can get no news except from the royal couriers. But though the enemy has lost prestige, and their predictions here have been verified while their courage grows, yet their fears have not altogether vanished, as they continue their preparations, and this morning Don Agostin Messia left for the Asturias. They are also afraid of the Barbary corsairs. All their hopes centre in the arrival of their squadrons, which they expect to crush the English.
They know nothing about the fleet. They have sent orders for its detention because they are afraid of another English squadron, though this is diminishing, and they believe that the number of sail sighted were small boats following the eighty. Nevertheless the merchants interested betray great fear.
Madrid, the 12th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 13.
Senato.
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
307. LUNARDO MORO, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The news disseminated yesterday morning about the English fleet is only confirmed with many alterations. They were not compelled to embark, but did so voluntarily, seeing success impossible; they lost neither horses nor guns, but only two positions occupied, the Fort del Puntal and another. They stopped a squadron of 10,000 to 12,000 men to secure the landing, which took place on the evening of the 6th; when the Spaniards discovered this they sent out 600 musketeers and some companies of horse, taking advantage of a position where small numbers were as good as large forces. After a long skirmish, as the Spaniards admit, they claim to have routed the enemy with a loss of 800 men, including four or five ensigns. They say the whole English force consists of common people without experience, but I fancy that the advantage of the Spaniards arose from the rain preventing the English from using their muskets, and the landing force being withdrawn under cover of the guns of their ships, and as the latter could not fire for fear of injuring their countrymen, the retirement was effected in haste and disorder and some were slain and drowned when the Spaniards fell upon them. On the following day the whole fleet left the port and stayed five or six miles out, not wishing to be caught inside with the arrival of other Spanish forces. By news arrived this morning it appears that they rased the two forts they abandoned and withdrew the few remaining troops they had left outside. They regret this decision here, as they would have liked to see them persist in holding on until the expected squadrons arrive, and they now pray God to send a fresh westerly wind, which they hope will drive all the English ships on to the coast. They say the position is very unsafe, but I do not think that the English will wait for this, and the wind does not seem inclined to render this favour, as the weather has at last begun to change and the wind blows from the north-east or north. All the galleys in these realms have orders to assemble at Cadiz under the command of the Duke of Fernandina, so that they may have a squadron of twenty.
Madrid, the 13th November, 1625.
[Italian.]
Nov. 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
308. To the Ambassador in England.
The enclosed from our consul in Soria will show you the ungrounded claims of the English consul at Aleppo upon the goods of our subjects because laded in that town on an English ship hired and sent by our subjects to the same in that town, as has always been customary there without question. You will see that the French consul tried to bring him to reason, but he persisted and appealed to Turkish justice, a course no longer customary, as such matters are usually settled amicably. When our consul proposed to refer the matter to his Majesty, he refused, and continued obstinately to the general scandal. Our consul was therefore obliged to go into court and to the mortification of the English he won. The consul evidently acted with the intention of establishing for the future the important point of sovereignty over the goods of any nation laded in English ships, a highly important question contrary to the liberty of nations and common practice to which we shall never consent. His Majesty's ambassador at the Porte himself recognises that these affairs must be treated with due regard for important State considerations.
You will discuss this incident with such ministers as you think fit, remonstrating with them about the behaviour of the consul, as he clearly tried to manufacture excuses for changing the ship's flag, and so pursue his unjust aims, as the event proved. You will point out the ill effects of such conduct, which is so different from what has always been prastised by foreign ministers in the Turkish dominions. We are sure his Majesty, with his love of what is just and proper, will grieve to hear about it, and your prudence must find the proper remedy to prevent the evil consequences that would ensue from a continuance of such behaviour.
Ayes, 132.Noes, 1.Neutral, 5.
[Italian.]
Nov. 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
309. To the Ambassador at the Hague.
We agree with your view that if the Most Christian will not enter the alliance between the States and England, the allies must be urged to operate by themselves. We wrote to this effect to the Ambassador Pesaro a week ago, and suggested that England should try and induce the Huguenots to submit. We most ardently desire the peace of France and you will continue your offices with the States to instruct their ambassadors to urge the Rochellese to throw aside their passions and show a true devotion to their prince.
We consider the States are quite right to avoid confusion in increasing the number of allies, and approve of their operating by themselves with England, especially as present emergencies require prompt action without the delay caused by opening fresh negotiations. You will act in this with necessary prudence without involving us.
Ayes, 132.Noes, 1.Neutral, 5.
[Italian.]
Nov. 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
310. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
His Majesty has come here to visit some of his country houses, for which it is conveniently situated; though near London there is less danger than before, as the plague shows signs of dying out. Matters at this court are mostly confined to disputes with the French and their ambassador. The latter has asked for a definite answer, Yes or No. They told him that their practice here required that all requests should be put in writing and all the lords of the Council informed not separately, as he has done. This is a mere pretext for delay and in order to get a reply from France first.
The ambassador has put forward three points, the revocation of the edict against the Catholics owing to the secret articles of the marriage treaty; the second, made more mildly than before, that his Majesty shall dismiss Soubise from the realm and give up his ships; the third, that the queen's household shall be established in accordance with the treaty. It is unlikely that they will satisfy their demands, as ill feeling increases and the French by their free speech and unrestrained behaviour offend their feelings here and excite suspicion that they will stir up a rising among the Catholics, who are suspected of ill will and sedition. This behaviour will only worsen the position of the Catholics, who are being disarmed, and for the same reasons they talk of disarming many of the magnates. The queen mother has written advocating mildness and tact, but those about the queen apparently mean to behave differently.
The English say that the ambassador has come to deceive them in matters of State and he has not sufficient powers; let him shew patents under the great seal of France for arranging to support Mansfelt, and the offers to Denmark are made in the interests of France, and intended to break up the league of Germany, without helping the Palatinate, and the King of Great Britain will have no part in this. They are angry at the persecution of the Huguenots, contrary to the promises of the peace and at the attempt to gain advantages for the Catholics at the same time.
It is said that they are asking for the ships lent to the Most Christian and protest that the king cannot abandon his own faith, a threat more easy to carry out than proper to utter. Blenville told me that the English want the peace of France to be offered to him, and their idea is by offending France to appease the ill feeling at the services rendered to France, for the purpose of satisfying Parliament.
The Palatine has thanked his Majesty for the alliance with the States, and the regard taken for the recovery of the Palatinate, urging him to induce Denmark and Sweden to join by supplying the help they need, and removing the ill feeling between them. This is diminished by the progress of the war, and it would be an advantage to dissuade each of them from claiming to command the united forces. It would also help to assist Sweden against Poland.
The duke's journey for these negotiations seems doubtful or rather in suspense. He has not returned to court. I will give the reason when I know.
The Dutch ambassador has orders to urge the sending of an ambassador to the Most Christian to announce the alliance, the States having already sent an embassy to that court. They also wish them to persuade the Most Christian to invade Germany, which would help both that province and Italy, and also, as the Swiss do not wish to join the league, that they shall carry out these arrangements with the Margrave of Baden.
News has come that the fleet was scattered by a storm, but assembled again on the 24th, only one ship being missing, off North Cape or Finisterre, whence they can go anywhere. Their proceedings are awaited with curiosity.
The blockade of Dunkirk is broken, 16 armed vessels left that port and scouring the seas of Scotland have captured and destroyed 60 unarmed but large ships of the Dutch fishing. This news comes from Newcastle. (fn. 5)
The Lord Keeper lays down his office and the seals with great discredit, as it had been foreseen for some time past, and he was promised one of the two vacant archbishoprics and his pension. (fn. 6)
The ships arrested and detained are numerous, most being laded for Calais; others are for the Dutch, but despite this they are ordered for London for inspection. The Dutch cry out aloud and the French are not quiet as this spoils their trade, although that commerce only serves the convenience of Flanders for the Infanta, which justifies their claims here.
I conclude with the news supplied by the Palatine's agent to the king of the cordial reception given by the Elector of Brandenburg to Gabor's ambassadors and the rich presents brought to that prince and his sister, who is about to marry Bethlen. His Majesty approves of this marriage and the agent has reported this feeling in order to encourage them to complete the union.
Kingston, the 14th November, 1625.
[Italian, the part in italics deciphered.]
Nov. 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
311. To the Ambassador at Rome and the like to the other Courts, and to the Proveditori General.
In spite of some successes of the Marquis Santa Croce, commanding the Genoese forces, the Duke of Savoy does not lose heart. He has received further reinforcements from France. Feria has been forced to raise the siege of Verua. He has pressed the Genoese for money, but they have given him no definite answer. The troops from Naples had not reached Genoa on the 6th. They hope to do more with these reinforcements. However, the Duke of Savoy does not seem afraid and is certain Feria has not so many men as he boasts. Feria has gone for a change of air.
Orders have reached the Viceroy of Naples to send as many ships as possible to Spanish waters with all diligence, as they fear some notable attack from the English fleet. The viceroy is in despair as he has no money, ships or sailors.
No progress has been possible in the Valtelline owing to the snow, but the forces of the league have kept the enemy in motion for three days. The Marquis of Coure has sent orders to push on with the fort near Tirano. The Most Christian keeps pressing them on, Coure also has orders not to lose any opportunity of taking Riva, which is very useful to the Spaniards. Popenain, who went to see Feria, has returned to Riva, satisfied with having obtained money. The French do not press their request of levies from the Swiss. It is thought that the arrangement with the Huguenots may enable them to dispense with their levies. They say less about the nuncio's promise.
Denmark proposed to have a force of 30,000 combatants. The Duke of Mecklenburg was to join him with 4,000 foot. They hoped that others of Lower Saxony would do the like. Mansfelt has left Amsterdam and reached Bremen. Denmark awaits him eagerly.
The reports of an excellent understanding between England and the States about the fleet continue. They are helping Denmark, and France is said to have offered him money. Tilly was quartered near Minden with Wallenstein four or five days away. Alberstat has arrived in the duchy of Brunswick. Denmark has helped him with 6,000 foot and 2,000 horse. Lorraine's brother (fn. 7) has left the French court fully satisfied. He swore fealty to the Most Christian for the bishopric of Tu, so France is relieved from that anxiety.
Ayes, 87.Noes, 0.Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Nov. 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
312. LUNARDO MORO, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The English fleet has disappeared from view, but I fancy, with the change of wind, it has turned back and is 20 leagues from Cadiz. Some of their ships, they say five, have gone to Cape St. Vincent. They say that a caravel succeeded in deceiving them about the fleet. It is detained by fear of the Dutch ships in these waters. Some say that the Peru fleet will not come this year. The people here are so devoted to the crown that they will willingly lay down their lives and goods in its defence. If the fleet is stopped they say it cannot come before May.
Madrid, the 15th November, 1625.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 The storm occurred on the night of Thursday the 13/23 Oct. The English men of war were wrecked at Calais and a fourth came into Dover dismasted. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1625–6, pp. 126, 127.
2 Sir John Suckling went to take the seal from Williams on the 4th November, n.s. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1625–6, p. 32.
3 This is Tillières own account: Le roi fait dire au comte de Tillières, des le soir meme, par un nommé Gourdon, qu'il veut qu'il fasse prêter serment à trois Anglais huguenots, pour être grooms de la chambre des gardes de la reine. Le comte de Tillières répond qu'il est prêt a obéir a Sa Majesté, mais qu'il la supplie, un ambassadeur étant venu en partie pour cette affaire là, de lui permettre de lui en dire un mot. Memoires du Comte Leveneur de Tillières ed. Hippeau, page 105.
4 The full title of the work was G.G.R. Theologi ad Ludovicum XIII et Regem Christianissimum, Admonitio, fidelissime humillime, verissime facta et ex Gallico in Latinum translata. Qua Breviter et nervose demonstratur Galliam foede et turpiter impium foedus iniisse et injustum bellum hoc tempore contra Catholicos movisse, salvaque Religione prosequi non posse. Augustae Francorum, Cum Catholic, Magistrat. Anno MDCXXV. The author was suspected to be Eudemon Joannes, a Greek Jesuit. The work had been already publicly burned in France on the 25th October. Mercure François (Richer), vol. xi, pages 1058–61.
5 Probably the letter of the mayor and aldermen of Newcastle to Conway dated the 28th October, st. vet. (S.P. Dom., vol. viii, no. 57), though the particulars are not quoted quite accurately.
6 This must mean that Williams was promised one of the two archbishoprics when a vacancy occurred. James promised him that if the great seal was taken from him he should have an archbishopric, or at any rate a better bishopric than Lincoln. Le Vassor: Hist, du Regne de Louis XIII, Amsterdam, 1703, vol. vii, page 276.
7 Nicholas Francis of Lorraine, brother of Charles III, Duke of Lorraine, who became Bishop of Toul in the following year.