Venice
May 1626, 1-9

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

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1913

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395-408

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'Venice: May 1626, 1-9', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 19: 1625-1626 (1913), pp. 395-408. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=89061 Date accessed: 01 October 2014.


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May 1626

May 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
557. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Your Serenity's favour in the letters of the 3rd April has filled me with gladness. When I am strong enough I will not spare my efforts or my fortune. If his Majesty goes to Scotland to his coronation, as he can hardly avoid doing some day for the satisfaction of the people there, and my health allows, I will follow him. I assume that the 200 crowns a month are as a relief for my heavy expenses. I only regret that I am kept to my bed and so fall short in my service.
Parliament has taken up the thread of affairs from the time of the adjournment. The king made no special reply to the last remonstrance, but continued his application for provision on the ground of necessity, promising redress afterwards. But parliament is practically inactive except about grievances, and persists that the duke is the real cause of all. With some interruptions they steadfastly pursue their career against the duke. There are many charges, and when they are arranged we shall see. All the affairs of this Court depend upon the issue of parliament, and various opinions are formed about it. This supreme council has gone so far that as it is not accustomed to draw back it seems impossible for the duke to remain safe.
He, on the other hand, seems to disdain their proceedings and his own safety. He fell sick of slight fever and with great ostentation had himself carried from the king's house to his own abode in a state chair amid murmurs at a thing so unusual. The king went alone to see him that same day, passing from house to house by boat. Subsequently the duke returned to the king's apartments, a vanity universally condemned.
But the most important circumstance is that in the duke's absence the Upper House met to enquire into their privileges. They passed a resolution that to take away one of the members of the house was contrary to their liberty and privileges. They decided to remonstrate with his Majesty, asking for the release of the Earl of Arundel, and they made the declaration to the king all united together. After hearing them he postponed his answer in order to confer with the Council. The king can hardly resist the demand, which is of great importance, seeing that the Upper House has always fallen in with his wishes. The release of the Earl of Arundel will also provide a precedent for the Bishop of Lincoln, the deposed Lord Keeper, and the Earl of Bristol, who has been kept away from parliament by the king's order to oblige the favourite.
The Earl of Bristol has received the usual writ he asked for, summoning him to parliament, but his Majesty privately ordered him not to come by letters of the Lord Keeper. Thereupon, after repeatedly demanding a hearing from his Majesty, he presented letters to the Upper House upon the subject, expressing his great respect for the Great Seal of England and obedience to his Majesty and asking the lords for advice and instruction about what to do, showing his desire to appear and stake his life if he did not prove that the duke was guilty of treason. The Lord Keeper, to whom the letters were consigned, kept the matter secret, but parliament took it in hand, reproving that minister. It is thought that they will hear the earl, although his Majesty opposes, saying that he was not sent away during parliament, and therefore it does not affect their privileges. But the members say they want him not as a peer but as a criminal for trial. He submits, promising to prove his accusation or to lay down his head. He maintains first that the duke betrayed the Palatinate to the Spaniards in concert with Gondomar.
The same papers were presented in the Lower House by a gentleman Digby, a relation of Bristol, who acted as his secretary in the Spanish embassy, (fn. 1) who says he will share his fortunes, as if Bristol did wrong he knows of everything and cannot be innocent. Such are these heated accusations. There are other matters of slight importance.
Carleton has found a special opportunity to report to parliament the state of the affairs negotiated in France, which are reduced to four leading points.
First, the two kings are to keep a force of 25,000 foot in Germany.
Second, the peace with the Huguenots has been arranged owing to the needs and with the consent of the Huguenots and the Most Christian has promised the king here to raze the forts and restore the islands.
Third, the release of the English goods is arranged.
Fourth, the ships are to be returned, and they have left things in such a good state that there can be no doubt about their execution unless the French are liars and break their promises. All this to prove the success of their operations and induce contributions; but some have not believed these statements. The French ambassador openly declares the falsehood of the agreement about Germany, the conditions of peace with the Huguenots and the restitution of the goods without previous satisfaction here, and remonstrates about the imputation of perjury on his country. It seems that they are ready to restore the ships, which should proceed to the Isle of Wight, where they will be consigned to the English by Manti, and he will receive the St. John, which Soubise gives up, that being already arranged through two gentlemen sent to the ambassador. However the English remain suspicious about the ships which the French are building in Holland, as it does not suit them here for that country to attend to naval affairs and I fancy they make some complaint about the Dutch.
They are negotiating upon the renewal of the defensive league between the two crowns, upon not leaving the flags absolutely free but being able to board ships to prevent harm, see the cargo, not touch the goods but to take away forbidden munitions.
They complain here of the non-fulfilment of the peace of the Huguenots, because the forces, although withdrawn, are about la Rochelle and about the merchants, who cannot get their own goods back. If this is not secured they talk of issuing letters of marque for reprisals.
The Most Christian ambassador has taken leave of their Majesties, and his departure is very near. He was fetched from his house to audience and a good number of his Majesty's guards with their chief captain took him back, an unusual honour, possibly in fulfilment of the promise to show every honour to the Most Christian's ambassador and to render Blenville's complaints of ill-treatment absurd. If they continue the same with his successor it will prejudice other crowned heads.
The ambassador received a special courier with orders to accept the usual present, given as a sign of esteem and friendship between princes, because he wanted to get away without the usual present. He was unable, however, to enjoy a feast which the duke prepared for him, who would be glad to please him just now, as the duke's indisposition and his more serious cares prevented it.
To these French events one may add two incidents, one a fresh affront by the pursuivants of the Catholics to the ambassador's house, but repelled by his servants without further consequences; the other that on Good Friday the king verbally commanded all his Catholic subjects to abstain in future from attending ecclesiastical functions in the queen's chapel upon pain of a rigorous enforcement of the laws, without regard to the immunity which the queen's influence may obtain for them.
They have sent some one to the Dutch ambassador with his Majesty's declaration that he will not allow his ambassadors to reside with their High Mightinesses without the pre-eminence their predecessors have enjoyed.
They have issued a manuscript declaration as enclosed about the prohibition of trade with Spain, at the instance of the customs officials, to facilitate the entry of Spanish goods into these realms. The king's ships have taken a Dunkirker laden with cloth for Spain.
We hear less about preparations at Dunkirk and that this year they cannot take the field in Flanders, although they are very strongly fortifying that place from fear of naval raids by the English and Dutch.
A small ship arrived from the East Indies two days ago with news of a fight between English and Portuguese ships, ending in favour of the latter, three English ships being lost or disabled. (fn. 2) This is a second event, as I have already reported the first.
We have other news from those parts of ill-feeling between the English and Dutch, and that the Dutch fleet is at the Moluccas, which left three years ago, with the addition of four ships taken with much booty in the sea of il Sur. But news from those parts is very uncertain and altered by the merchants of that company, who purposely conceal and change things.
I have not yet been able to learn the real arrangement with the Persian, who left and returned because the ships for his voyage had already sailed. He presented to the king several carpets and cloths of gold. The alleged ambassador says he will go with him to justify himself in Persia. The king is sending a gentleman for this and for the negotiations, which I have not yet learned owing to my illness. (fn. 3)
There is a rumour here of a league between France and Spain, not specially against this crown, but general. When the Ambassador Blenville took leave of me I adroitly directed the conversation to this. He remarked that something was said on the subject, but he did not believe it, although with the idea that the king here wished to make a party of the Huguenots the Most Christian could not do less than show his zeal by desiring a union with the Catholic powers. There might be some negotiations, but the French are making a reconciliation with the Spaniards; they do not speak of an understanding about religion and will not move together until the other matter is adjusted. He assured me that by the last advices the Most Christian had not ratified the Valtelline peace. Nothing is said about that here, as parliament alone absorbs all their attention, with a little for the dealings with the gentleman of Piedmont, about which the French ambassador does not conceal his suspicion, though he considers them will o' the wisps.
London, the 1st May, 1626.
The king has sent a message to the Lower House to decide within five days about granting the subsidies, but parliament immediately passed a resolution to discuss nothing until after the completion of what they call the causa causarum, to wit, grievances and the crimes of the duke.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Enclosed
in the
preceding
despatch.
558. Prohibition against trading with Spain.
Present.
The Lord Keeper.The Treasurer of the Household.
The Lord Treasurer.
The Lord President.The Keeper of the Wards.
The Duke of Buckingham.Secretary Coke.
The Lord Chamberlain.The Chancellor of the Exchequer.
The Earl of Montgomery.
The Earl of Carlisle.The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.
The Earl of Kelly.
Secretary Conway.
Whereas his Majesty by a proclamation dated at Hampton Court on the 24th December last declared that none of his subjects should trade in any state of the King of Spain or the archduchess, upon pain of confiscation of all his ships and goods, whereby many believe that all trade with Spain is forbidden to English merchants, while foreigners may bring the goods of Spain and Flanders to this realm, be it known that Spanish goods are not forbidden by the said proclamation, but only trade in the states of the King of Spain and the archduchess, owing to the danger that might arise to our merchants, ships and sailors, it is this day ordained that the proclamation shall be thus interpreted; it must not be extended to any who have trade with the subjects of the King of Spain or the archduchess in such way that the merchants may risk their ships to be plundered in the dominions of the said princes, provided always that the merchants, under pretext of trade do not take to the dominions of the said princes any munitions of war, upon the most severe penalties. The Lord Treasurer shall give notice of this declaration at all the ports of the realm.
WILLIAM BECHER, Secretary of the Council.
[Italian.]
May 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
559. SIMON CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
They say here that parliament has granted the King of England about three millions of gold for the requirements of Germany and the fleet, and other sums to his Majesty on condition that he allows, in accordance with their ancient laws, that parliament shall bring to trial those who have done wrong in offices and other serious crimes, indicating the Duke of Buckingham. The king replied that he would think of it, but he means to protect Buckingham against all censure and will never allow them to proceed against him, but rather against his royal person. Parliament told his Majesty that they did not intend to waive the said condition, they would not offend him, seeing him so determined to protect Buckingham, but they would not confirm the vote for the money. At this reply, the king gave orders for the dissolution of parliament, preferring to remain without money rather than consent to the censure of the duke. It is not yet known whether parliament is dissolved, news is awaited eagerly. They further say that parliament in the end offered the king two millions and his Majesty replied that it was very little and he would rather do without.
The ambassador of Savoy told me that a courier from England had gone through on his way to Turin; he did not know with what advices, but he would tell me what he heard.
Melun, the 1st May, 1626.
[Italian.]
[May 2.] (fn. 4)
Collegio,
Lettere.
Venetian
Archives.
560. To the Podesta and Captain of Rovigo.
Order to send a company of capelletti to meet the Ambassadors Marc' Antonio Correr and Angelo Contarini, who are going to England, and escort them as far as Verona, (fn. 5)
To the Captain of Verona.
Order to have a company of capelletti ready when the said ambassadors arrive, to escort them as far as Bressa.
[Italian.]
May 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
561. ZORZI GIUSTINIAN, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The French ambassador sent recently to invite me to a meeting at the English embassy about the truce negotiations with Spain. As I was troubled with gout, I excused myself. They proposed to wait until I was better, but I begged them to go on and let me know what they decided. From what they told me this was merely what I reported about acting through Ganiz Adè to get the Mufti and other leading lawyers to object to the truce if it is revived. Ganiz Adè has since then succeeded in rendering Bairam Pasha utterly opposed to it. The imperial resident does not seem to be bringing the matter forward. He has been to see me and confirmed the fact that the peace of the Turks with the emperor was not ratified.
The Consul of Aleppo advises me of the departure of the galeasses for this place. As he says nothing about the English consul, I hope he has abandoned his pretensions. The English ambassador here has not said any more to me about it.
The Vigne of Pera, the 3rd May, 1626.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
May 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
562. MARC ANTONIO MOROSINI, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
On Wednesday I had audience of the duke. I urged moderation. He promised to await a reply from France, but the instances of the English and his being so powerfully armed as well as the republic showed what he ought to do. France only wished to make peace in our despite. He told me he had spoken to the English ambassador and urged him to write home, and he had promised to embrace no proposals for peace that were not to the advantage of all; his king would not fail to pursue with courage the enterprises already begun, in the assurance that he would never be abandoned by those interested in the public liberty.
The duke spoke at length of the strength and advantage which we might gain from their taking part, exalting to the skies the power of that crown.
I thought best to reply so as not to alter his good opinion but to destroy all his hopes of deriving any advantages here from that quarter. The duke said he heard from M. della Dragoniera, sent by the Prince of Piedmont from England, that things were going very well there; parliament promised the king money and assistance to pursue his enterprises, but the members raised a hubbub against Buckingham, demanding an account of the administration of so many treasures under the late and the present king, and taxing him with the failure of the last fleet and all the disasters in the attack on Cadiz, as being Lord High Admiral it was his place to go and not to send others. The king supported him vigorously, and he had offered his Majesty to sacrifice himself for the public good, for the king's relief, handing himself over as a prisoner to his enemies.
Turin, the 3rd May, 1626.
[Italian; deciphered.]
May 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori
Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
563. ALVISE CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Letters from Rome report a proposal to send religious to these provinces, Scotland, England and so forth, matters of very small importance.
The Hague, the 4th May, 1626.
[Italian; deciphered.]
May 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori
Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
564. ALVISE CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The officers and soldiers are beginning to turn up and a good number have come from England. With this occasion the States have letters from their ambassador asking them to have their share of ships ready against the time those of the kingdom are equipped, which are being hastened on.
It seems more likely than ever that Mirabel's journey to Brussels means a prompt passage to England. It is announced in that city that some negotiations have been opened with the English; but I imagine this is a common device to excite jealousy. Meanwhile they have appointed a secret council at that Court, consisting of the Marquis of Spinola and three or four thoroughly Hispanified Flemings to provide for all matters of the war as far as concerns England, this country and elsewhere, though it may serve as an instrument for peace also.
Things here are in a sorry plight. Assistance from France is wanting; they are doubtful if not hopeless of any from your Serenity; they place little reliance upon England, seeing the delays and the disputes between the king and parliament. Denmark constantly urges peace, not being helped by England as the league provides, and with little from France. They do not attach enough importance to Gabor's diversion, as England says it is unable to contribute towards it as well as to its other very heavy expenses.
The Hague, the 4th May, 1626.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
May 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
565. To the Ambassadors Extraordinary in England.
We were glad of your departure and we are the more anxious for your speedy arrival, because both the Ambassador Pesaro and his secretary are so indisposed that we may remain in the dark for some time about the important events that are taking place. You will therefore make what haste you can. When you arrive you will find various disorders in the parliament; the king's proper views about leaning to a pacification with France, disapproving of Fargis's precipitous peace and supporting the Palatine and Germany, require better support from parliament. In France they are waiting to hear from Spain, and meanwhile objections arrive from every quarter. We have written to the Ambassador Pesaro about your entry and stay at the Court, and he will give you the particulars.
Ayes, 73.Noes, 1.Neutral, 5.
[Italian.]
May 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
566. To the AMBASSADOR PESARO in England.
We regret to hear of your continued indisposition, and the sickness of the secretary is unfortunate. We hope this will find you better and able to enjoy the leave granted to you. In the meantime we advise you of the departure of the ambassadors extraordinary for England, whom we are hastening on. You will arrange with the ministers that they receive the same honours as other ambassadors extraordinary of crowned heads, and you will send word to the ambassadors.
Ayes, 73.Noes, 1.Neutral, 5.
[Italian.]
May 7.
Consiglio
di X.
Parti
Comuni.
Venetian
Archives.
567. In the Council of Ten.
That 100 ducats be paid as a gift to the representatives of Andrea Rosso, secretary in England, who is to stay on after the departure of the Ambassador Pesaro; in accordance with the order of the 5th June, 1613.
Ayes, 12.Noes, 0.Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
May 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
568. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The French ambassador, after taking leave of their Majesties, left for France with every sign of esteem. The king gave him a silver buffet as the usual present and a splendid diamond as the extraordinary one. The queen, by the king's command, gave him a box of diamonds with her portrait. Though so much disliked when here, he has received remarkably gracious treatment.
The queen, amid the peril through which the duke is passing, strongly recommended his preservation to the king, in moments of the sweetest affection. This is one of the results brought about by the good treatment of the ambassador. Sir Carleton however told me that regard for the good offices of the most serene republic for good relations between the two crowns had produced this good effect. The parliament, jealous of this apparent change of policy, suspect the duke of having promised something against the State to the advantage of the Catholics and the hurt of the Huguenots. The French lords here indeed say they have a promise of satisfaction after the close of parliament, and it cannot agree with the public service except by carrying out the things arranged with them. The Bishop of Mande retains the commissions of the Most Christian to exercise the charge in the interval before the ordinary ambassador of that crown arrives.
Meanwhile they claim that there is no need to renew the defensive league between the two crowns, established for ever but upon condition that the successor of the prince last deceased shall intimate its renewal within a year of his accession. This was done here, and apparently they expect the confirmatory patents from France, but for the agreement that the flags shall be free or other conditions for shipping they claim here that a new treaty must be made.
Tantucci, (fn. 6) who was sent by Cardinal Spada with the pope's brief to the queen, left with the ambassador. He had a chain presented to him. He saw the king under the Ambassador's protection and more privately with the duke's introduction. His Majesty received him graciously, and said he was obliged to the pope for recognising the ill-treatment shown him in Spain and for facilitating his marriage. His father loved and esteemed him. He charged Tantucci to repeat this speech. He then said he was sorry the pope was too Spanish and that the Cardinal Legate had made the peace between France and Spain. Tantucci pointed out that the pope was French by sympathy, and the peace was arranged without the cardinal's intervention. Cardinal Spada had written to him that he had no news from the Catholic Court for a long while, and did not know for certain whether there was peace or war.
The Count of Mansfelt has recently sent a gentleman (fn. 7) to the king in great haste. He gave me letters from the count asking for my help at this Court. He is asking his Majesty for 40,000l. down and 30,000l. in two months to maintain his army, and he will supply his own needs with the money from France. He asks leave to levy Scottish troops and for some ships, upon payment for their transport. He speaks of his understanding with Gabor, and especially of 6,000 horses from Gabor. Without money he cannot go forward. He tells of the advantage derived by the general from Brandenburg with the elector's consent, that Saxony has refused Wallenstein a passage; he has broken the bridges over the Elbe to stop the imperialists. He tells of Mansfelt's enterprises, the attempt on the bridge of Resai and the retreat due to Denmark's general (fn. 8) ; he will try again, as it is the only bridge left to the imperialists over the Elbe. Tilly keeps his forces together, while the king has to keep his in garrison in the captured places, but he has favourable positions and cannot be forced to battle. But the irresolution here spoils all the best designs. The colonel of the Duke of Weimar, (fn. 9) who can get nothing from the ministers here, has written to the duke and the King of Denmark. I find that in addition to the points mentioned about levies and money there is a third for using forty Danish ships against the Spaniards, as they can do them most harm at sea. But I think there proposals owe more to the Duke of Weimar than to any firm decision in the king. I am assured that the king urges the employment of Gabor and the provision of the 40,000 crowns a month, offering to pay a third himself. He does not seem to incline much to the contributions of France, as he wants to have all the provisions in his own hands and pay Gabor himself. The colonel of Weimar told me that in reply to requests for such payment the Prince of Orange said they would grant what the King of Sweden owed them for old contributions.
The Germans here say that Gabor recently said he would move, and asked Mansfelt to advance against Silesia. Others, who want the King of Sweden to take part in the war, foretell that Bethlen will not move except in concert with that king and the Elector of Brandenburg, and say that Gabor is rather dissatisfied with them here because they have not open correspondence with him, but only through the ambassador at the Porte, and because the king never answered the invitation to his marriage.
A person cognisant of these secrets told me that that had shown some suspicion here about Gabor owing to his past proceedings with the Count della Torre. They also have news of the arrival of Camerarius in Sweden, but he has not seen the king, who is far away and busy with his victories. He is also displeased at the league being made without his participation, as they seem to have placed no value upon his offers, though he has rendered notable service by his Polish war and preventing the Cossacks from entering the empire; nevertheless if they fulfil the conditions first laid down he will lead his army into the middle of Germany. If Camerarius has not negotiated with the king it seems they may expect detailed advices from him, though there is always some jealousy between the two northern kings, partly due to the difference between Calvinism and Lutheranism, which has ruined Germany.
A gentleman has come from the Duke of Mecklenburg to ask his Majesty to stand godfather to that prince's son, but I can discover no more.
London, the 8th May, 1626.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
May 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
569. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I have reported his Majesty's request for despatch about the subsidies and even asking for more. Parliament has decided to add a subsidy which with the three others is considered sufficient, and more than the country has ever granted. But they have not announced the manner and time of payment, in order to keep the king in hope of obtaining money, keeping themselves united, establish their grievances and their process against the Duke of Buckingham. To this they have devoted themselves with great zeal, and on many heads they have already declared that the fault is the duke's. The chief accusations are of having extorted moneys from the East India Company, of selling the office of Lord High Treasurer and of the chief posts of the kingdom, whilst out of doors reports circulate of a precedent being afforded for his condemnation in the Lord High Admiral of England in the time of Edward VI, who, although the king's uncle, was beheaded for buccaneering out of season, causing a breach in their relations with friendly princes, and they liken this to the reprisals against France and the other friends of this crown. They further accuse the duke of the death of the late King James, having discovered laws which condemn a subject to death and confiscation of goods, who of his own responsibility, without the consent of the chief physician and of three others, applies medicaments to the king. The duke is in this case, but he says that the late king so commanded. They add this grant of ships to the French, and they seem to have copies of the agreement between the Ambassador Fiat and the duke and the depositions of the sailors who informed him of France's designs against la Rochelle.
With other accusations the members are preparing a complete process to lay before the Upper House, where they will ask for justice and where the peers of the realm are usually punished.
Amid these disturbances the duke displays the utmost self-command and contempt for every attempt of parliament. The king wishes to support him, but it is uncertain whether he will dissolve parliament on his account, although the duke asserts the contrary.
Great progress has been made in the case of the Earl of Bristol, since his accusations reported by me. Parliament awaited the king's decision about the Earl of Arundel, to follow the same example in the case of the other absentees. But in the meantime his Majesty turned the matter to his advantage, sending to thank the Upper House for their modesty and respect in not having decided about the Earl of Bristol, against whom he could not help showing his displeasure. He had suffered him for the space two years, but now he wished to have him brought to justice, and he accused him for things done before his embassy to Spain during that charge and since his return.
With the king's accusation in addition to the earl's request, the parliamentarians ordered him to be brought a prisoner, his own house in the city being appointed for his prison, with liberty to conduct his affairs. It is thought that they want to divert the charges against the duke by incrimination against the earl, but it will be by good fortune if some head does not pay for this hatred. The dependants of the Palatine say that they will be able to find out how that prince received the crown of Bohemia, by what artifices he lost the Palatinate and how the ruin of his house was assured.
Your Excellencies have ordered me to report the real state of the Persian negotiations. Nothing is settled owing to the conflicting views of the merchants, their lack of confidence to lend the Persian so much capital, the dangers and expense involved in the voyage. However, a Persian merchant (fn. 10) remains here to carry on the negotiations and to dispose of the silk he brought. The gentleman named Cotton, destined for Persia, has the rank of ambassador and is charged to demand satisfaction for the outrage committed by the last Persian ambassador upon the Englishman who claims equal rank, so that one or the other may be punished. This is because the duke wishes to favour Cotton and the Englishman, but it is not thought that he will pursue the journey, but only wants to keep up his credit here. The king grants Cotton authority over the goods and subjects trading in those parts, with powers equal to the ambassador at Constantinople. But the East India Company objects, saying that they do not want the favourite of the duke to have any power over their goods and persons, and they will not agree to the expense. If they require an ambassador they will ask to send themselves, as the Levant Company does. Amid these disputes the matter remains in abeyance.
The merchants have arranged that the last four ships which have left laden with cloth and tin for that voyage shall not go to Persia, but to Malaga to trade solely in the country of the Great Mogul. (fn. 11)
There is no absolute confirmation of the last fight between the English and Portuguese as the ship which brought the news had it from others which did not come from the place.
A proclamation of the Duke of Savoy of free trade in the ports of Villefranche, Santo Hospitio, Citta and Nice has come into the hands of the leading merchants.
The Count of San Mauritio is still awaiting news from Piedmont, especially to the despatches to the prince from this quarter. The French are very jealous about his stay here, and the ambassador before he left said that if they wanted war in Italy they must treat with his king and not with the Duke of Savoy.
When the Cavalier Carleton came to see me, I performed the friendly offices enjoined upon me some months ago. He was very pleased, expressing his devotion.
I remain in bed, though somewhat better. The ordinary has arrived this week without letters from Italy. It is said that they may have been robbed before they reached Antwerp.
London, the 8th May, 1626.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
May 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
570. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I could have no better medicine than the permission to return home. It has given me fresh life. However, my present condition will prolong my stay here for some days, though with the advantage of rest and relief I will try to start as soon as I can hope to get home alive. In leaving this Court I will look after all the interests of your Serenity, especially those of the ambassadors extraordinary. Andrea Rosso will certainly do everything well, as he knows the country, and he will earn the praises of the Senate.
London, the 8th May, 1626.
[Italian.]
May 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
571. To the Bailo at Constantinople.
An ambassador from Persia has been at the Hague these last months; apparently he went chiefly about trade, urging the Dutch to keep up good relations with Persia and promising that they should have preference over the Persians themselves in buying silk and all other facilities for trade.
Another Persian ambassador has gone to England, where he obtained audience after many days. He treats about silk and trade between the two nations. It is arranged that a certain Englishman shall go to his king with the title of ambassador, with another gentleman; and the Persian's negotiations are recommended to the common merchants of the East Indies with the king's authority.
These negotiations of the two nations with Persia may ultimately prove harmful to our mart. We inform you in order that you may divert this trade if possible. You will try to discover by what route they propose to take the silk to Holland and England, and then if it suits the convenience of our merchants for it to come through the country of the Emir of Saida from Baruti and thence transmitted to this city, or by some other way recognised as more advantageous and safe. As the matter is of great importance, we know that you will devote your customary application to it, and we shall await the aforesaid information.
Ayes, 139.Noes, 1.Neutral, 6.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Presumably Simon Digby.
2 The news was brought by the Scout, and was to the effect that it was reported in Antwerp and Lisbon that the Portuguese, with seven ships and frigates, had sunk four of the English ships, the Palsgrave, Dolphin, Lion, and Falcon (a pinnace). The report was not credited in England, and the facts appear to have been as follows: the Portuguese, with five galleons and frigates, attacked the English fleet, consisting of the vessels named, which were on their voyage out to Surat, in the Swilly roads off Damaun. The Lion fought for two days, and then got away to Gombroon, where she landed her cargo, but there the enemy's frigates came up and pressed her so hard, in her weakened condition, that her own crew blew her up. The Palsgrave and Dolphin forsook the Lion in the first conflict, but the five galleons and frigates overtook them and fought them for two days. They seem to have escaped eventually without serious damage, although grave fears were at first entertained for their safety. Three Dutch ships were in the Swilly roads at the time, but never made any attempt to render assistance. Cal. State Papers, Colonial (East Indies), 1625–9, pages 114, 199, 208, 238, 239. The last two papers appear to be erroneously dated 1626, instead of 1625.
3 The Persian ambassador, Nukud Aly Beg, was to have left on Wednesday the 22nd April. The Company had four ships starting for the East, but the ambassador could not be ready before the 24th, and as the ships had orders to sail with the first fair wind, they eventually left without him. He came back to London and wished to take passage in the Expedition, the ship fitted out by the East India Company for Sir Robert Shirley, the "alleged ambassador," and Sir Dropmore Cotton, the gentleman sent by the king. They did not sail until the following year, when they went with the Company's fleet, the ambassadors being accommodated on board the Star. Cal. S.P. Col. (East Indies), 1625–9. pages 182, 185, 333.
4 Undated, but placed between papers of the 2nd May.
5 The ambassadors left Venice on Monday, the 4th May. Contarini called upon Lady Wake at Padua. Wilkinson's despatch of the 8th May. State Papers, Foreign, Venice.
6 See No. 545 at page 388 above, and note.
7 M. Lermont. Mansfelt's letter is in the S.P. Foreign, Germany (States), dated the 9th April.
8 Mansfelt's disastrous repulse on the 25th April in his attack on the defences of the bridge erected by Wallenstein across the Elbe at Dessau.
9 Lieutenant-Colonel Streiff.
10 Presumably Nukud Ali Bey, who claimed to be an ambassador. He is called a merchant in the Minute Books of the East India Co. Cal. S.P. Col., East Indies, 1623–9, page 184.
11 The four ships seem to have been the William, Blessing, Discovery and Morris. The first three reached Batavia on the 27th May, 1627. Cal. S.P. Col., East Indies, 1625–9, page 375.