Venice
March 1640

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

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1924

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20-32

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'Venice: March 1640', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 25: 1640-1642 (1924), pp. 20-32. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=89482 Date accessed: 16 April 2014. Add to my bookshelf


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March 1640

March 1.
Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni. Corti. Venetian Archives.
32. To the Ambassador in England.
We have received your letters of the 26th January. You are to watch carefully the proceedings of the Marquis of Velada, as this is most necessary under present circumstances. We enclose the usual sheet of advices.
Ayes, 126. Noes, 0. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
March 3.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
33. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The commissioners of Scotland make no progress with their very difficult task. Although they have announced themselves as willing, in conformity with the written demands, to present themselves to the king in the guise of suppliants, and have asked for audience more than once, they have not so far been able to obtain it, and are very unfavourably impressed. Thus the original hopes cherished by them and by the generality of obtaining from his Majesty the satisfaction that they claim, grow less and less, while the apprehension increases that with the efforts for an accommodation proving absolutely futile, the Scots will not wait any longer for an appeal to force and that they will again take possession of the best fortresses of that country. In order to secure the castle of Edinburgh against some sudden surprise, his Majesty has ordered some troops to be sent hurriedly from the frontier, and news comes that some have been introduced by the Governor of Berwick, causing some stir among the people there.
This week they have sent off to Ireland all the officers come from Holland, for the purpose of getting the troops there into shape. The Lieutenant promises that they will be very numerous. They have more confidence in prompt and faithful service from them than from any other kind, believing the Irish to be thoroughly antipathetic to the Scots.
Fresh misgivings encouraged with all their might by certain interested ministers that the demands of parliament are likely to be immoderate and that it will not be disposed to give satisfaction to his Majesty, have supplied a motive for delaying the orders for its meeting, and they contemplate postponing or even allowing to lapse the public decision already arrived at. They have held long and troublesome discussions these last days at the palace, at which the views of the ministers are not in agreement. This leaves their final decision in doubt, in which they must be influenced by the important consequences seeing that its meeting is the object of the fixed desires and great attention of everyone. They are devoting every effort to find a way to raise enough money from the people to meet present expenses, supposing it does not appear expedient to assemble parliament, or if the objects they aim at are not achieved, but every device encounters insurmountable difficulties, and this leaves the ministers and the Treasurer in particular in a state of great perplexity.
The king seems to feel very bitterly the continued imprisonment of his nephew, as well as the pertinacity with which the French demand his promise for his release, and on this account his Majesty's resentment seems to be influencing his intentions. They have sent a courier to the Agent Curcio at Nurenberg instructing him to take active steps to induce the Electoral Diet there to make some vigorous declaration in favour of that House and of this same prince as well. The Catholic minister here does his utmost to persuade his Majesty that his masters cherish the most friendly disposition in this matter, and in order to stir them to take some ill advised steps he offers prompt assistance.
This is all that I have to report this week. I have to-day received your Excellencies' letters of the 28th January. I regret to hear that my own have not reached you, though I send them every week with such punctuality as the poor condition of the Court here permits.
London, the 3rd March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 5.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Haya. Venetian Archives.
34. Girolamo Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador at the Hague, to the Doge and Senate.
Their High Mightinesses have sent precise instructions to their ambassador extraordinary in England to return with all speed, and to endeavour not to be there at the arrival of the Spanish minister. In spite of all their efforts to keep dark the transactions of that minister it is well known, even among the lowest people, that his mission has been unsuccessful.
The Hague, the 5th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 6.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
35. Anzolo Correr, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Agent of the Landgrave of Hesse has arrived at Court to complete the negotiations about his troops. He presented letters in favour of the Prince Palatine and the Ambassador of Sweden has delivered others on the same subject from his mistress to the king. Savigni and Noiers have visited the Prince. Since the King of Great Britain shows so much reluctance to give the satisfaction asked of him, they are directing their attention to adjusting the matter with the Prince himself, if it be possible.
Paris, the 6th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 8.
Collegio, Secreta. Esposizioni, Principi. Venetian Archives.
36. The Secretary of the English Ambassador came into the Collegio and spoke substantially as follows :
My lord, the ambassador, has been detained by various accidents so that he has not been able to return to this city as he wished. He has instructed me to express his devotion to your Serenity and to say that he will set out at the first opportunity to perform his duties.
The doge replied : We are glad to hear of the ambassador and that he is well. He will always be welcome, both as ambassador of the Majesty of England and for his own sake. As the time for travelling is approaching he should have good weather for his journey, and we shall greet him affectionately on his arrival.
[Italian.]
March 9.
Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni Corti. Venetian Archives.
37. To the Ambassador in England.
Renewed instructions to watch the proceedings of the Marquis of Velada. Enclose copy of exposition of the English Resident made in the name of the Ambassador Fildin. To take a suitable opportunity to express to Fildin the Senate's appreciation of his good will towards the republic and to tell him that he will be welcome when he returns. Enclose advices.
Ayes, 123. Noes, 0. Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
March 9.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
38. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Those who prudently advised the king to conciliate the English people by proceeding to summon parliament have finally gained the upper hand, and this week, without further delay, they issued writs throughout the kingdom, causing extreme satisfaction everywhere. The first sessions should take place about the middle of next month.
They also afforded an opportunity to the deputies of Scotland to see his Majesty privately. They besought him, in a very humble manner, to grant them a public audience, so as to give more publicity to their justification and to the proofs of their obedience and loyalty. They subsequently represented that the Scots claimed nothing beyond the full observance of the terms agreed upon last year at Berwick. This means the expulsion of the bishops and other radical measures prejudicial to the sovereignty of the crown. The king, on his side, knows full well that these demands cover the most subtle artifice, and are only intended to strengthen their party in England. The king, with an appearance of great anger replied in a few words, that they were not going the right way to facilitate an adjustment. They should put their demands in writing, and he would then deliberate fully upon what he considered best for the general welfare and service of his subjects there. All the same, they persist with vigour and say that their instructions do not go beyond, so that the negotiations for an agreement are in as doubtful a position as ever, with scant indication of any mutually satisfactory compromise.
Meanwhile, in order to make that people bow to his will, by active preparations for war, the king has issued instructions to all his captains that they must be at Berwick with all their men before the end of this month. He has also decided to strengthen the army by the prompt addition of 2000 cavalry under twenty captains, who have been nominated. They received loans to complete the levy, two days ago, together with their patents.
Next week also the Lieutenant will proceed to Ireland. His valued advice supports his Majesty in favouring the most spirited action. He promises freely that even without subsidies from parliament he will find a way to obtain promptly from the people a fresh levy of 300,000l.
The news that the Most Christian has set Prince Casimir at liberty has revived the hopes of the ministers here of obtaining that of the Palatine also, especially in virtue of the last pressing offices of the Swedish crown on his behalf.
The Catholic minister tries to represent to his Majesty as approaching ever nearer the marriage between his daughter and the Prince of Spain. He assured the king, at a special audience, that when the Marquis of Vellada arrives, for whom they are toiling at numerous and very rich liveries, his master will send to this Court with his wife the Count of Monterei, in order to convey the princess to Spain. Those who measure present insinuations by past experience do not attach much credence to these assurances, and they cannot persuade themselves that even if the princess went she would subsequently get her husband.
The gentleman of Prince Tomaso persists in his stay at Court. Having lost hope of persuading the ministers here to use the influence of this crown for the reconciliation of Madame of Savoy with the Princes there, he now proposes to open a mart for ships of this country in the port of Villefranche. Besides other advantages offered to the merchants he says that the Governor of Milan, in order to facilitate the flow of capital which the ships will bring, will set up a bank of 100,000 crowns in that town, and will grant many exemptions and privileges to the goods which proceed thence to that state. But the merchants here do not commend this idea. It was mooted formerly by the late duke, but was never carried into effect. In any case it would do harm to the marts of Genoa and Leghorn, and accordingly, the persons interested in those places do not fail to use every effort to thwart these dangerous enterprises of the Savoyards.
The Catholic fleet has proceeded even as far as the Isle of Wight, without hindrance from the enemy. They fell in with eight Dutch ships, proceeding to Amsterdam with merchandise, seized them after a slight contest, and carried them off to Spain.
The negotiations of the Dutch ambassadors remain as they were, without making any progress. They have asked for a fresh audience of the king, which is fixed for next Sunday. I gather that they will not only represent that the reply they ask for may be no longer delayed, but will also say something about the ill feeling that is at present arising between the crown of Denmark and their Provinces.
The Barbary corsairs, augmented to eighty sail, cruise in great force to the very mouth of the Strait. They have of late plundered sixty ships of divers nations. It is feared that an English ship has suffered this fate. It left Cadiz with 400 chests of silver to be carried to Flanders. (fn. 1) The Catholic minister is very distressed about this, because of the blow to his master in view of his expenses for the approaching campaign.
London, the 9th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 13.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Haya. Venetian Archives.
39. Girolamo Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador at the Hague, to the Doge and Senate.
Harsem, although he has received orders to return, feigns indisposition, so as not to come back with a tarnished reputation, as he raised the greatest expectations before his departure and he has not succeeded in obtaining so much as a portion of the things claimed.
The Hague, the 13th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 16.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
40. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
As arranged, the Dutch ambassadors had audience of the king last Sunday ; but their offices proved different from their written announcements as well as from what everyone expected. Instead of pressing for the reply from his Majesty which had been fruitlessly urged and promised in the past, Arsem spoke to him in a very serious manner, saying that as he found him immersed in affairs of greater consequence, he had decided to return home, without raising fresh questions, as his masters had recalled him, leaving the old Joachimi here, with the sole purpose of cultivating good relations.
The king made no objection to his decision, but spoke at large of his esteem and affection for their High Mightinesses. He thus completely put a stop to the negotiations and compelled this minister, with ever growing dissatisfaction, to follow up his intention, accelerating his movements considerably. Thus he took leave of the queen on the following day, and of her mother. To show his resentment he did not ask for the usual public audience of the king. He is only waiting for the Dutch ships appointed to take him home.
M. d' Enflit (fn. 2) also left last Friday, who was sent by the Prince of Orange ostensibly to pay his respects to the queen mother, but really to arrange a marriage between his son and the princess here, to suggest alliances and make other offers admirably calculated to back up Arsem's negotiations, after having long sighed in vain for answers to his offices. He left ill pleased to see the advances of his master so little esteemed by the princes here, and filled, no less than Arsem, with the most serious misgivings that His Majesty is seriously contemplating ideas incompatible with the interests of his country and of France as well. In this connection this gentleman went so far as to assure the queen mother positively that their stiffness here will compel the States and the Prince himself, although they are not thoroughly satisfied with the Cardinal Richelieu, to draw closer to that crown and second all its designs, even those out of harmony with the aims and objects of his government.
By virtue of the orders issued the whole kingdom and this city in particular has been engaged this week in choosing members for the parliament. For the most part their choice has fallen upon, not only Puritans, but those who in the past have shown most boldness in opposing the king's decrees, and excluding, with definite and seditious declarations, the Catholics and all those who served his Majesty last year against the Scots in the affair of York. This exclusion, while giving further encouragement to the cause of the rebels, shows the difficulties to which his Majesty's demands and special interests will be subject in parliament. Thus while on the one hand he is filled with well justified apprehension, he does not forget to employ means calculated to win to his side the parliamentarians with the greatest influence (la quale per cio circondata da un canto dai sentimenti della piu giusta apprehensione, non lascia dall'altro d'impiegar i mezi valevoli a guadagnare ai proprii compiacimenti li Parlamentarii di maggior credito).
Assisted by eight councillors of the Cabinet the king finally allowed himself to be persuaded to hear the deputies of Scotland again, on Tuesday. He closely questioned them as to whether they meant to persist in their full demands, or whether, like obedient subjects, they would submit to the goodness of their prince. They took six days to reply to this. Everyone notices that these deputies lose no opportunity of gaining time. By this they hope that the vigorous war preparations will cool off, and they look in particular for the meeting of parliament. From its measures they hope, with good reason, for support and not the cutting down of their proposals, and they also confidently expect them to receive vigorous backing in the present trouble with France and Holland by opportune if cautious assistance in money.
Following the precedent of the loan made by the Council, his Majesty is now demanding from all the lower officials of his household a payment of 2000l. each. Many have promptly obeyed, by overstraining their private resources. They count on raising over 100,000l. of their money in this way. (fn. 3)
They have ordered Wilimbanch to return without further delay from the French Court if he cannot obtain final and categorical answers about the release of the Palatine before a definite date.
London, the 16th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 20.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
41. Anzolo Correr, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Prince Palatine is all ready to come out of the Bois de Vincennes, Bellievre having practically induced him to consent to the satisfaction asked of him. They did not want to treat with him alone, but in view of the disadvantages which might arise from his being imprisoned longer, from the side of England, they decided not to refine too nicely and to settle the matter one way or another.
Paris, the 20th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 23.
Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni. Corti. Venetian Archives.
42. To the Ambassador in England.
We have received no despatch from you by the ordinary of Antwerp. The Captain of the Galeasses reports the capture by pirates of a ship carrying Venetian goods. The captain of an English ship is proposing to buy the contents of this ship at Modon. The name of the captain is not known. You will ascertain the facts and make strong representations to the king for the restoration of the goods to our subjects, causing them all to be sequestrated and the captain punished.
Ayes, 93. Noes, 1. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
March 23.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
43. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
This week also the king and the ministers deputed from Scotland have held a secret conference. So far there is no appearance of any progress towards an agreement that would give reasonable hope of domestic peace to this kingdom, such as is passionately desired by his Majesty. He realises more and more from the elections how little he can count upon the generosity and good will of the approaching parliament, while on the other hand the old suspicion of the sincerity of the Scots about an adjustment, when they multiply difficulties, are increased by authentic news that in Scotland they do not relax their activity in putting their troops in order or in providing for all the other requirements of war.
Meanwhile the accumulation of some considerable sum of money ceaselessly occupies their chief attention here, in long consultations. They are also enquiring with great diligence into methods calculated to compel the people here to supply the needs of the crown by prompt payments, without having to depend in the future on the decision of parliament. Some even strongly advise force if the obstinacy of the people does not otherwise permit it. Wise men consider that this would be very unlikely to succeed and that it might produce dangerous disturbance. But the king, deceived in his hopes of obtaining from parliament by gentle means the large grants that were expected, supports this strongly, and is meditating how he shall carry it into effect, if the stiffneckedness of the parliament men compels him to dissolve the assembly without results, an event which appearances seem to indicate as certain (per trovar modi di raccoglier qualche somma considerabile di denaro non cessano qui intanto le applicationi piu fisse, in longhe consulte, esaminandosi ancora con molta premura i mezzi valevoli a costringere questi sudditi di supplire con la prontezza degli esborsi ai bisogni della corona senza dipendere in avvenire dall' arbitrio de Parlamenti, e vi e chi efficacemente persuade a procurare con la forza Vintento quando dall' ostinatione de popoli altrimenti non si possi conseguire. Consiglio che se bene dalli piu prudenti e giudicato di difficilissima riuscita, et atto a produrre pericolose novita, il Re, nondimeno deluso dalle speranze di cavare con soave mano dal parlamento le contributioni che larghe s'era presuposte v' applaude assai e va meditando il modo di praticarlo quando le durezze de' parlimentarii lo necessitino a discogliere senza frutto la ridutione come Vapparenze pronosticano sia per certamente seguire).
A parliament opens in Ireland also, on Monday, and the Lieutenant has posted thither. After he has set forth his Majesty's desires there by his own strenuous offices, he has orders to return to Court with all speed to take part in the important events here, more especially with regard to the proposals to be made by the new Catholic Ambassador Vellada. They suppose him not far from these shores, as he has been several days at Dunkirk, waiting for a favourable wind.
After receiving the usual present the Dutch Ambassador extraordinary Arsem has left. In order to soothe him to some extent the Secretary of State was sent to express esteem for him personally and for his masters, and to declare again formally that they wish to keep to the old beneficial relations, assuring him that if they have not at present embraced the overtures for a closer alliance, they will do so at a more opportune moment, with mutual satisfaction and advantage. In responding to this courteous office expressing the king's excellent sentiments towards his masters, the ambassador seemed to go away completely satisfied, though at bottom he feels very differently, as I wrote. Before leaving he sent a gentleman with his compliments, to which I made due response.
In his last despatch from Brussels the Agent Gerbier states that the Duke of Lorraine proposes to accompany the Ambassador Vellada to this Court, on the pretext of visiting Madame de Chevreuse. This arouses the suspicions of the Cardinal Infant, who fears that the sole motive for his leaving Flanders is to advance his agreement with France. The king, who is equally anxious to avoid occasions for fresh expenditure and also to please the Spaniards, has adroitly intimated to the duke's agent that his coming here under present circumstances may give rise to suspicion and he would like the visit postponed to some other time ; so it is thought that the duke will not follow up his original idea. (fn. 4)
A youth, son of the Swedish Chancellor Oxisterne, arrived here last week. He has kissed the king's hands, but it does not appear that more than mere curiosity to see the country has brought him here.
London, the 23rd March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 24.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Haya. Venetian Archives.
44. Girolamo Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador at the Hague, to the Doge and Senate.
The government here is apprehensive of serious consequences from their differences with Denmark. The king of England wished to act as mediator and gave a hint to that effect to the Dutch ambassadors. But their High Mightinesses, whose own past actions give them little cause for confidence in that crown, are afraid that the king of England would pronounce against them and in favour of Denmark. He not only has a secret understanding with that crown but there is a definite treaty for rendering each other assistance mutually with eight ships of war in every eventuality. Accordingly the Dutch will not accept the offer.
The Hague, the 24th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 27.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
45. Anzolo Correr, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Palatine has come out of the Bois de Vincennes, it is believed on condition that he will not leave Paris without His Majesty's permission. But this is not certain as since he came out he has seen none of the ministers. He remains incognito in the house of the English ambassador, awaiting the departure of the Prince and ambassador of Poland, so that he may have the house they are now occupying. This may be to-morrow, Prince Casimir having already taken leave of the king and queen and all the Court.
Paris, the 27th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 30.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives.
46. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
A courier sent by the Earl of Leicester brought last Saturday particulars of the decree issued in the French Court for the release of the Prince Palatine. On Monday a gentleman of Wilimbanch arrived with letters from the Palatine himself, announcing that he is in the house of the Ambassador Leicester and is awaiting his Majesty's commands. Although the king is highly gratified to hear of his nephew's liberty, yet he openly betrays his dissatisfaction at the way in which he has obtained it, feeling that France has not shown due respect for this crown, but the representations of other princes and considerations of state have moved him to release the prince. The leading ministers complain publicly of the lack of experience and easiness of the young prince, in having brought this affair to completion without informing the Earl of Leicester or Wilimbanch, as being scarcely seemly for himself as well as England. The Spanish minister here, on his side, fearing that the incident may weaken his intrigues, devotes all his efforts to encourage their resentment here and tries to confirm the king in his original belief that the disturbances in Scotland are due to advice from France and the Dutch, in their fixed intent to snatch that kingdom away from this crown, in their own interests.
The Marquis of Vellada intimates that he wishes to postpone his journey to this Court until after the Easter festivities, under the mendacious pretext of not travelling in Holy Week, which Spanish devotion sets apart for pious offices. The excuse does not please them here, as they want to hear his proposals at the earliest possible moment. They also entertain some suspicion that the release of the Prince Palatine is the real reason, in order that he may await some more precise instructions about his offices from Spain or the Cardinal Infant. When he arrives I shall keep a sharp look out on his negotiations, cautiously thwarting as much as possible, anything that might prove disadvantageous to the public cause, although it is probable that the present domestic affairs of this crown, in their great disorder, will suffice to remove all fear for this year, even if their leanings were different.
The Scottish deputies continue their negotiations, but slowly and without result, both sides being tacitly agreed to await the issue of parliament, which is to meet at the beginning of next month. The king's plan is to go on arming powerfully, without creating alarm, ostensibly in order to subdue the rebellious Scots by force, but with the secret intention of using these arms to bridle the insolent demands of parliament and make them do their duty. The deputies, on their side, hope that the war against their country will not meet with the approval of parliament, and consequently that it will not grant the king the subsidies he requires to wage it, and then they will be able to seize such advantages as circumstances offer them.
Meanwhile military preparations increase marvellously. They recently reviewed several companies of cavalry, and the Earl of Northumberland had orders to push on 500 of the best horse to Berwick. Next week they make the general muster everywhere, not only to make sure of the numbers, but equally to scrutinise the quality of the men, endeavouring to have as few Puritans as possible in the companies, as the king does not trust them.
They are also devoting incessant application to the naval force. His Majesty is anxious to have ready next month forty large well armed ships, provided with victuals and every other requirement. The Treasurer declares that 150,000l. of their money have just been paid from the king's purse for these requirements of war.
A rich ship has arrived here from the Bermudas. Besides other property it brings a considerable sum of money for the Catholic. The merchants claim reprisals for one of their ships previously captured by the Dunkirkers and have approached the king for permission to take compensation from this money. The Catholic minister resists this vigorously and intimates that if the request of the merchants is heard, his master will seize the goods of Englishmen in Spain. (fn. 5)
Your Excellencies' letters of the 1st inst. have reached me today. I wish you every felicity at the approaching Easter festivities.
London, the 30th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 30.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Haya. Venetian Archives.
47. Girolamo Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador at the Hague, to the Doge and Senate.
Harsem returned from England six days ago and two days later gave an account of his negotiations in the Assembly of the States General and in that of Holland. He produced a letter from the king which he is thought to have obtained to give credit to his exposition as he got no reply either from the king or from his ministers to his negotiations. He dilated upon the king's friendly sentiments, but could produce nothing definite as the king steadily maintained an air of indifference about the destruction of the fleet in his port, and gave no open sign to indicate whether he still remained incensed and wrathful or whether he had relented and indulgently passed over the transgression. Accordingly Harsem only obtained a general statement of good will towards this state, which excites more approbation than confidence. He was obliged to leave the question of an alliance incomplete as the king seemed very averse from any overtures in that direction. But he has left the impression in England and here too that Joachimi will go on with that business. But here they do not believe that it will result in anything substantial. With reference to the Scottish war, while he reports the eager energy of that crown, he has also dropped hints about the king's disposition towards an accommodation, and about the interval which everyone believes must occur between the measures required for military preparation and the ultimate clash of arms.
With regard to the Palatine Harsem spoke quite soberly, as the king seemed rather irritated than disposed to show his resentment by definite action.
The Hague, the 30th March, 1640.
[Italian.]
March 31.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Spagna. Venetian Archives.
48. Alvise Contarini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The Marquis Malvezzi has proceeded from Burgos to one of the Biscay ports, where he embarked for England. He goes in the capacity of ambassador extraordinary. They say he takes remittances of 500,000 ducats to offer to the king there. It is supposed that he is going to an affair already arranged, as the English Ambassador here has treated in detail privately with the Count Duke. It is believed that the business consists in an offensive and defensive alliance between the crown and England, the king undertaking to supply 300,000 ducats a year and 8,000 soldiers, who will be Spaniards they say, for the recovery of Scotland, and on the English side to declare war at once on the Dutch and the French, sending out the fleet against them, and when Scotland is subdued to supply help to the House of Austria for the recovery of Lorraine. After that is done the Spaniards promise to restore the Prince Palatine to his dominions as has been so frequently suggested. They also propose to accept the English princess as the wife of the prince here and to send someone to England to fetch her, so that she may be brought up at this Court in the Catholic faith. Some feel doubtful whether either of the crowns is in a position to fulfil its promises, yet in spite of this they are confident here that this treaty will go far to render vain the plans of the Dutch and the French in the present campaign in Flanders, as they do not think that Malvezzi would have been sent from here in succession to the Marquis of Velada unless the matter had been practically settled. The remittances for 500,000 ducats which he takes belong to the 5,000,000 which were destined for Flanders.
Madrid, the 31st March, 1640.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Salvetti, writing on the 23rd, mentions the anxiety about this ship, the Rebecca, which had left Spain two months before with 700,000 to 800,000 crowns for Flanders. On the 30th he reports that the merchants have received word of the capture of the ship by Algiers pirates. Brit. Mus. Add MSS., 27962H.
2 Jan van der Kerkoven, lord of Heenvliet.
3 The names of the officials (king's servants) who were called upon to pay this loan are preserved among the State Papers, with the amount required from each. They were to attend at the Council table an the 11/21 March. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1639, 1640, pages 493, 525, 546.
4 Gerbier reported on 18/28 January that the duchess of Chevreuse was urging the duke to come to England either with the marquis of Velada or by the packet boats. S. P. Flanders. This project was diverted and on the 6th April the marquis Villa came to pay the duke's respects to the king. P.R.O. Paris Trans., 12 April.
5 Hopton writes on the 30th May, "The merchants interested in a ship of the carera of the Indies, that was cast away near the Bermudas, have advice that the money and goods that were in her are brought to Dover and that they are imbargued to make satisfaction for the Virginia ship that was brought into Cadiz by the marquis of Cardeñosa : whereupon they have been with some of the merchants in Cadiz and have told them that if their goods shall be stayed in England they will go no further for satisfaction than to their houses." S. P. Spain. Salvetti, writing on 30th March says the cargo was claimed as being taken from a wreck, and confiscated for the benefit of the English colony. Brit. Mus. Add. MSS., 27962H.