49. To the Ambassador in England.
Acknowledge his letters which supply information of the
continued progress of the troubles in that country. The event
will show the effect of the king's absence and of the fresh embassy
contemplated by the Dutch. Confidence in his diligence in the
supply of news.
Vote of 300 ducats for couriers and the carriage of letters, to be
paid to the ambassador's agents.
Ayes, 115. Noes, 0. Neutral, 5.
50. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England,
to the Doge and Senate.
The sequel to the declarations reported in support of the
behaviour of the governor of Uls were sent on Saturday by the
parliament commissioners to York, Lincoln and to the governor
of Uls himself with instructions to express once more their
appreciation of the faithfulness of that commander and of the
garrison as well, and further to divert the counties of those parts
from innovations and from any leanings to serve and obey the
The king, on his side, stung to the quick by the insult which
he has received, labours without intermission to provide himself
with the means of exacting a rightful vengenance and at the same
time to make himself master of that town, whose inhabitants,
taken as a whole, do not applaud but rather condemn the temerity
of the governor.
To this end the king sent for all those in the county of York
who possess more than 100 crowns a year in revenue. When
these appeared he commended to them in affectionate terms the
defence of his royal person and family and then told them all
about the disobedience of that governor. He pointed out that
such an insult was not to be borne and asked for their help and
counsel as to the best means of vindicating his personal honour.
They all with one accord loudly declared their perfect readiness
to devote their fortunes, their children and their very lives in
the defence of his Majesty and the royal stock. But as regards
the incident at Uls they asked for time to consider what would
best conduce to the general well-being. His Majesty granted
this and protested aloud that he would rather lose the three
crowns he wears than pass over an insult of such consequence
without severe chastisement. Accordingly for the mature
consideration of such an important question they at once made
choice of ten of their leading men, with instructions to meet and
decide upon the best course and then give their answer to the
king. The tenor of this is not yet known for certain.
Meanwhile the sheriff of the county, (fn. 1) who takes part in the
deliberation as the leading man, in order to escape censure, has
since sent a report of what has happened so far to the parliament.
That body, although not without supporters in that county,
remains in anxious expectation of what will be decided by the
people there, the majority of whom and the most substantial
apparently inclining to support his Majesty's demands. But
others who are obstinate professors of Puritanism, offer a vigorous
opposition. They have presented a paper to the king to persuade
him to put aside all memory of past bitterness and to renew his
former confidential relations with parliament. So amid the
conflict of such utterly contradictory passions the issue still
Parliament, on its part, has held frequent debates upon this
outstanding question. Foreseeing possible difficulties in the
future, they decided to send deputies to York to-day, four of the
Upper and eight of the Lower House ; ostensibly to petition his
Majesty once more to come back and live here, but more particularly
to try and introduce fresh overtures for a composition.
Those among them who sincerely desire to see these prolonged
quarrels converted into the enjoyment of tranquillity do not feel
any confidence that this will prove an easy task. It is also said
that if the people of York do not decide to take up the king's cause
vigorously, he contemplates retiring to Newcastle or to Wales,
where the people are calling for him, and there mature fresh
plans while displaying his fortitude (et quivi maturare con prove
di costanza nuove consigli).
In the mean time the chancellor of Scotland has put in an
appearance at York, having been sent by the Council there to
dissuade his Majesty from the journey to Ireland, warning him
that if he goes the Scots will refrain from sending any more troops
there. What is even more worthy of consideration, he brings
a declaration that while the king's subjects in that country will
gladly sacrifice their persons as well as their goods in the defence
of his Majesty and his children, yet since they find that the
peace of Scotland is bound up with that of England, they cannot,
in the interests of its maintenance, dissociate themselves from
the parliamentarians, a tacit admonition that they will not take
the royal side in these unhappy disputes.
The commissioners of that country resident here have also
sent petitions to the king to the same effect, advising him to
devote his efforts to a sincere agreement, and they have offered
their assistance to forward this. But those who have an intimate
knowledge of the proceedings of parliament believe that this move
of the chancellor and the petition of the commissioners have been
secretly promoted by a few disaffected parliamentarians, influential
with those who control affairs in Scotland, for the purpose of exciting
his Majesty's apprehensions and at the same time of making the
Scots mediators of an advantageous accommodation. But if for the
settlement of these differences it becomes necessary to appeal to
the tribunal of arms, the Scots will not suffer the king to be deprived
of his rights and prerogatives, more especially in the distribution
of appointments, so greedily claimed by parliament. The Scots
are deeply interested that these shall remain at the disposal of his
Majesty owing to the many and rich advantages which they derive
Fresh difficulties have arisen over the question of arming the
kingdom. The king refuses to consent to the peril involved by
these forces and to the control of them being prolonged for more
than a year. He has further raised objections to the form in
which parliament has had the bill drawn. Accordingly proposals
to carry it without the king's consent are being revived.
These last days they have caused the petition from the county
of Kent to be contemptuously consigned to the flames by the
common hangman, as seditious. Yet in spite of this and of the
most strenuous efforts to prevent its being presented, it was none
the less brought here on Saturday in last week and presented to
parliament by a number of the men of the county. To show
their resentment that body caused two of the leaders to be
seized and imprisoned. (fn. 2) The others, after receiving proofs of
their high displeasure, have departed full of wrath. They have
put it about that they will come back very soon in greater strength
and numbers for the purpose of compelling parliament to return
again to the straight path of the laws, to preserve for the Protestant
church its ancient pastors and to assure the king, their lawful
sovereign, the tranquil possession of the prerogatives enjoyed
by his predecessors.
Parliament on its side, apprehensive of the consequences the
example of such bold demands may involve, has been intriguing
with some Puritans of the same county to get them to present
a contrary petition, whereby they may discredit the first and so
dissipate all idea among the people of other counties of combining
for the same purposes, as not a few of them showed an inclination
His Majesty has sent the order of the Garter to his nephew the
Palatine Prince Rupert, in Holland. (fn. 3) In Ireland 2500 Scottish
soldiers have landed, and falling in with the troops of the rebels,
put them to flight, killing large numbers of them. (fn. 4)
The commissioners appointed for the reorganization of trade
are at work establishing new prices for goods which are imported
to and exported from this country, with the idea of increasing
the duties on the former and decreasing them on the latter.
The task is already well forward and the directors of the
Levant Company do not relax their efforts for getting the
importation of currants forbidden for some time. Under the
colour of the bill I wrote of they are trying to prevent them
from being registered in the book of these reforms. Their plan
is that when the book has obtained the approval of parliament
and of his Majesty, the omission of any mention of this fruit will
be as good as a formal prohibition of it in this country. Being
forewarned of the danger I will contrive to make an opportune
suggestion to the customers so that they may prevent this inconvenience.
Unfortunately their contract is at an end and
as the duties are now under the state's control (caminando di
presente per conto publico le dogane) it is to be feared that their
offices will not be so energetic as the occasion requires. Moreover
as the commissioners appointed for this function are biassed and
won over by the merchants concerned, I cannot feel any confidence
that my efforts will prove altogether successful. Nevertheless
I will do my best, yet I shall be grateful if your Excellencies
will send me instructions as to the form in which I should address
the ministers and the king, in case he returns or approaches this
city from which he is at present 350 miles and more away.
London, the 16th May, 1642.
[Italian ; the part in italics deciphered.]
51. Thadio Vico, Venetian Resident in Germany, to the
Doge and Senate.
I enclose the comments of the English ambassador on the
imperial proposals. He told me that he perceived it was all
thrown back into delays and intrigues. That being the case
there was no other course, upon the return of the courier sent
to England at latest, with this caricature of negotiations, as
he called it (con questo burlo di negotio), than to take himself off,
on receiving his orders. He added however that there would
be no rupture, as they knew the good intentions of the emperor
by himself, and I know that he is so instructed by his king, and
if the affair seems hopeless, to leave it in the hands of God (et
cosi anco so incaricato dal suo Re, et di racommandare in tutti i
casi di cosa disperata la causa nella mano di Dio).
Vienna, the 17th May, 1642.
52. Comments of the English Ambassador on the Imperial
Excell. Illus. ac Nobil. dom. Legati ad mediationem in causa
Palatina deputati plurimum honorandi.
Molestissimum mihi accidit quod Ex. et III. dom V. officium
istud personali praesentia praestare non possim, ideoque pauxilla
haec (quae benignitatem vestram interpretaturam confido) ad
Vos dirigere compellar.
Immensum Ex. et III. Dom. V. laborem in procuranda domus
Electoralis Palatinae reconciliatione cum sac. Caes. Maj. ac
per reunionem unius ex praecipuis membris cum supremo capite
et corpore stabilienda communi Germaniae securitate, non
possum non grate agnoscere ; ea siquidem in re, peramplum
prudentiae, judiciique vestri testimonium orbi Christiano exhibuistis,
nulla probabiliori via incomparabile pacis bonum restitui
posse, quam per aequitatem et justitiam, eorumque Principum
in amicitiae vinculum receptionem, qui eodem affectu ac cura
pro praeservatione libertatis sac. Romani Imperii feruntur.
Idcirco pro tanta tamque sollicita industria nomine regiae dom.
mei clem. Maj. Principisque Electoris Palatini ac III. domus
ipsius generales particularesque Vobis ago gratias, hac cum
asseveratione regium dom. mei Maj. ut et ser. suam in omnibus
amicitiae necessitudinisque reciprocis officiis cum regibus et
principibus vestris corresponsuras fore.
Verum cum dolenda decem fere mensium expectationis experientia
comperiam Ex. atque III. Dom. V. nullum responsum
obtinere potuisse ac demum tales declarationes exhibitas esse
quae realiter et in effectu nullae sint, ad vestram ingenuitatem
appello, rogans ut ipsimet judicare dignemini qualemnam earum
interpretationem facere possimus, num non haec sit tacita quaedam
et logica recusatio ac evidentia plenaria quod ego nihil tandem
effectivi quoad scopum pacificationis nihilve quod regiae dom.
mei Maj. benignis officiis amicitiaeque in proportione respondeat
Valde igitur sum sollicitus qualem vel vobis vel factis propositionibus
responsionem dare possim praeterquam generalem :
sed necesse est ut pro judicio meo dicam me ea quae sunt oblata
et quoad totum et quoad partes prout restricta et gravata sunt,
nulla et inania esse existimare.
Quod plurimae sint clausulae intertextae ita obscurae ut multa
magnaque inconvenentia sub iis latere possint.
Quod tota series et scopus contra honorem regiae dom. mei
Maj. et ser. domus Palatinae dignitatem vergat, dum indecora
de impossibilia postulantur.
Quapropter quaemadmodum Ex. et III. Dom. V. pro ipsorum
conatibus ingentes debeo gratias : ita necessarium esse duxi
vobis significare si dom. vest. has propositiones ullo modo vel
acceptabiles vel tractabiles esse judicaverint, vel super iis interessati
persistere decreverint, me in infausto hoc negotio non
ulterius vos cum incommodo vestro temporisque si non existimationis
jactura, urgere aut importune vobis molestum esse
velle ; sed at prudentiam vestram, quid vobis faciendum erit vos
remittere. Me quidem quod attinet ea via progredi constitui
quae cum honore regiae dom. mei Maj. convenit ; atque obsequio
mandatis ipsius a me debito conformis est.
Sed ut, dilucide mentem meam aperiam, nullam aliam viam
aptiorem inveni pro plenaria responsione quam ut oblatis propositionibus
quid ser. rex meus et petit et expectat opponerem.
Placebit itaque Ex. et III. dom. V. certo scire nullam aliam
inferioris Palatinatus restitutionem nisi integram cum omnibus
juribus, membris et privilegiis tam politicis quam ecclesiasticis
in eo statu ac conditione uti a Principibus Electoribus Palatinis
antiquitas, et specialiter anno mdcxviii. possidebantur, absque
ulla limitatione aut diminutione vel jurisdictionis vel possessionis
sicut omnes alii Electores et Principes vel vi legum et constitutionum
Imperialium vel jure proprio in ditionibus suis iisdem
gaudent et possident, a nobis acceptatam iri.
Quod ad dignitatem Electoralem et Palatinatum Superiorem
attinet Ex. et III. dom. V. atque universo orbi Christiano declaro
ser. regem meum de accommodatione aequa et honesta tractare
in animo habuisse ; sed vel terras emere vel de alia alternativa
nisi immediata et integra quicquam audire nolle.
Quantum ad declarationes particulares quae in linqua mihi
ignota exhibitae sunt, in mea iis pariter incognita replicare non
libet : sed cum etiam vel nullas vel dubias aut injustas eas
dijudicem, generalem hanc meam resolutionem sufficientem
ad eas responsionem esse existimo.
Et haec sunt quae in mandatis Ex. atque III. dom. V. respondenda
abeoque quidem prudenti vestrae considerationi
submitto meque favori vestro commendo.
A Viennae, xxx. Aprilis—x. Maii, MDCXLII. (fn. 5) *
53. Zuanne Zon, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands,
to the Doge and Senate.
After having decided on the embassy extraordinary to England
the States here have agreed unanimously upon the selection of
two, one the leading man among the most noble of the Province
of Utrecht, (fn. 6) and the other the Pensionary Borelli of Amsterdam,
both men of high repute and directly dependent upon the Prince
of Orange. Vosbergh will not go, because he is the first deputy
of Zeeland, and they do not want more than one from that
Province, because Joachimi, who is in England, can supply that
function. They have already send him the rank of extraordinary,
so that he may treat jointly with the others, and have
the largest part in the conduct of that arduous business.
Having reached this stage the States are now preparing the
instructions. So far as the first drafts show, these contain
express orders to the ambassadors to proceed to the spot as
quickly as possible, and arrived in London to ask the parties
directly whether their interposition for an adjustment will be
acceptable. If they find them favourable, they are to make
overtures. In the conduct of the negotiations they are recommended
above all to see to the preservation of the rights of this
detestable religion, begging the king to forget the past and to
refer the present differences to them, and for Parliament to allow
the king the free and peaceful possession of his own ancient
prerogatives. The ambassadors are strictly charged to return
immediately, without starting new projects, if the mediation of
these Provinces is not welcomed, or if they show the slightest
objection to entering into negotiation.
Everyone is driven to conclude that this mission is altogether
alien from the requirements of the royal house, since the States
are anxious not to offend the king or displease the Parliament
by their operations, and as they incline to the Parliament, it is
fairly evident that they cannot do anything effective for his
Majesty, and the embassy will merely serve to show the power
of the Prince's wishes over the States, and to keep the queen
quiet for some time by this demonstration.
If these overtures take a good turn, the government hope to
be able to use them for opening the way for the renewal of an
alliance, thereby putting trade on a firm basis, and securing the
passage between Dover and Dunkirk. But the ambassadors
will not say anything about this unless they find that things have
taken a good start, and the new proposal may serve to facilitate
the progress of the other, which they must put in the first place.
To-morrow the Queen of England will go to Amsterdam, to
note the marvels of the wealth of that city. She will have the
most splendid reception that the country can afford. She will
stay there over two days, and the Prince will accompany her ;
on his return he will proceed with his preparations to take the
Cressi has arrived, who was sent on a complimentary mission
by the Most Christian to his sister the queen. He brings elaborate
replies which do not at all correspond with the expectations of her
Majesty, who would have liked permission to proceed to France
whenever she pleased.
The Hague, the 19th May, 1642.
54. To the Ambassador in England.
Acknowledge his letters, which indicate a continuance of the
troubles though with hope of better things for the king's service.
With respect to the trade at Zante and in currants we have
to say for information that we hear from our Proveditore in that
island of the departure for England of two of the English merchants
there, to return in the following August. They are going
with such good impressions and with such friendly intentions
that they will bring great help by their account of the truth and
of the good treatment and facilities that all receive in general.
In the present condition of that affair these considerations and
the representations they may make should prove of great assistance
in support of your offices and other efforts for the advantage
and progress of that affair. Meanwhile our Rector there does
everything in his power to afford them facilities while they receive
the best of treatment, which will be continued as is fitting.
Enclose the usual sheet of advices.
Ayes, 100. Noes, 0. Neutral, 3.
|55. To the Ambassador in England.
Owing to the continuance of the troubles in England with fear
of worse disturbances, he is to take leave of the king. He will
go to where his Majesty is and perform such offices as he considers
appropriate and in accordance with the circumstances, assuring
him of the republic's regard for his house and realm and their
hope of a satisfactory solution for his affairs. To inform him
that a successor will not long delay his appearance, to prove the
republic's regard and esteem for his Majesty, and that in the
mean time the Secretary Agostini will do all that is necessary.
If the journey to see the king proves difficult or dangerous it is
left to the ambassador's discretion to take leave by letter.
He is to perform the usual offices with the ministers and
ambassadors. With the Secretary Agostini he will leave all the
information pertaining to the office, so that he may carry on the
the service, and remain on until further order, giving him the
same assignments and directions as were decided for him last
year. (fn. 7)
56. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England,
to the Doge and Senate.
The determined refusal of the king to agree to the new command
of the troops for the defence of this kingdom in the manner
lately proposed by parliament has roused such feelings of wrath
that throwing to the winds every sense of duty they have finally
come to the determination, after numerous disputes, to send
orders to all the lieutenants selected to take up the exercise of
their charge even without his Majesty's approval, to increase the
companies of the trained bands, to replace the captains suspected
of favouring the royal interests and to hold themselves in readiness
for the orders and requirements of parliament. The leaders
who are destined to superintend the militia of this city, who are
all of the Puritan party and equally eager to see the remains of
the monarchy brought down to be replaced by an entirely democratic
state, have accepted the task. To afford a more striking
proof of their favourable disposition they decided on Tuesday
to hold a stately review of the old and new troops. There in the
presence of a numerous concourse of people and in the presence
of the principal members of this licentious parliament, who by
their attendance not only magnified the beginning of their nascent
rule but also added lustre to their present authority, they endeavoured,
by suggesting the precariousness of the situation, to confirm their
hold on the affections and in the interests of the common people
here (hanno procurato con atti di una precaria auttorità di bene
confirmarsi li affetti et gli interessi di questa minuta gente).
We do not hear as yet that they have gone as far as this in
the provinces. Many of the governors and lieutenants nominated
remain constant in their determination not to meddle in the
disorders of these times, possibly from a premonition that the
aspect of affairs may soon be subject to change. Great curiosity
is felt to hear reports of the sentiments with which this most
important move has been received by the people. If it meets
with the submission that they claim it may prove a useful means
of putting them in a position of control which includes his Majesty's
person and that of his posterity as well (il quale quando trovi l'
obedienza pretesa puo riuscire habile a ponersi in contingenza
con l' imperio la stessa persona di Sua Maestà e quelle della
While they are thus engaged here in the disposition of the
government, the king on his side, by frequent public papers to
the parliament, full of arguments and vigorous protests, demands
in virtue of the constitution of the realm, that the fortress of
Uls shall be restored to him, as well as the exemplary punishment
of the governor for his fault. He points out the rashness of the
measures they have taken in this connection ; the unlawfulness
of their action, parliamentary authority being subject to his
will. He proceeds adroitly to stir up the people not to allow the
fundamental laws of their country to be abrogated or the introduction
of arbitrary proceedings, to the injury of the public
liberty. The object of all this is to warn his subjects of the
passion and interest by which the form of the present government
is ruled and thereby incline them to join with him and take
revenge for the continuance of such violence, in the midst of
which those of most experience do not think that it will be easy
for England to hold out for long.
For the safe custody of the fortress of Uls the governor does
not spare every sort of effort. He has deprived the inhabitants
of arms, not being absolutely sure about their fidelity. Being
anxious to increase the strength of the garrison he has sent strict
orders to the commanders of the trained bands of the district
to send him numerous companies of those troops. His Majesty,
on the other hand, has forbidden the carrying out of these orders,
under severe penalties, and directs that the militia of the country
shall not assemble in future or be mustered without his express
commission. In this way he aims at preventing the execution
of the decrees of parliament in this particular.
Nothing is yet known with certainty about the decision of the
people of York in response to his Majesty's demand for assistance
to enable him to capture the town of Uls and to do justice upon
the commander there, and they are longing impatiently for news.
It is stated that with the support of the lesser nobility of those
parts his Majesty proposes to proceed once again to Uls and to
force his way in. The event will show whether this is to happen.
Meanwhile the people of the province of Wales have offered
the king their services beseeching him again to go and live in
that corner of his kingdom. This affords support to the rumours
that if the people of York do not support his proposals with hearty
good will the king contemplates retiring to that country, where
the loyalty of the people and the strength of inaccessible positions
will enable him to make a long and secure resistance to the shocks
of the present attacks and await circumstances more favourable
to his fortunes.
The members of parliament concerned do not exhibit that
complete satisfaction with the declarations of the Council of
Scotland by their deputies here that was at first expected. They
object to them as not sufficiently emphatic and they do not even
consider them altogether sincere. For this cause the relations
between the two countries, which in the past they have done their utmost
to make appear perfectly harmonious, are mingled with suspicion.
Six ships have been sent to reinforce the fleet, all supplied
with a number of soldiers and with copious munitions. They
are busily engaged in arming fourteen more, at the cost of the
merchants, ostensibly to be sent to the coasts of Ireland and
prevent the rebels there from receiving help from foreign princes.
But there are some who believe that under this pretext are
hidden other private designs of Vice Admiral the earl of Warwick
and others interested in the islands and ships captured these
last months by the Spanish forces in the Indies, and accordingly
the Catholic ambassador here is apprehensive about these preparations.
Following the example of the French minister he
has made application for a levy, for the service of the king, his master,
but his memorial being passed on by his Majesty to the parliament,
he has been answered with a flat refusal. This has been printed
and published, to the humiliation of that minister and the destruction
of his hopes of advantage which he claimed on the strength of the
neutrality which he professed.
Although the present disorders point clearly enough to the impotence
of this crown to do anything useful in alliance with foreign
powers to balance the predominance of France or to undertake other
schemes, yet the minister of the Most Christian here, by order of his
king, sent a strong remonstrance to his Majesty about the offers made
by the Ambassador Ro at the Imperial Court to join the Austrians in
the bonds of an offensive and defensive alliance against the disturbers
of the peace of the empire, upon condition that the Palatine be replaced
in possession of his ancient dominions. The ambassador declares
that to tender such a scheme is an attack upon the interests of France
and on those of the Dutch equally. He cultivates the most influential
parliamentarians, and he has constituted a new precedent by showing
them the very instructions of his king, to the end that parliament
might condemn these proposals, and he hopes to obtain his intent
by a public decree, since commissioners have been appointed to
enquire into the affair. At the same time he makes it clearly understood
that France will never permit the restoration of that house
without her authority, and if it takes place, the Most Christian will
not on that account neglect to procure advantages within the Palatinate
itself. The talk has roused discussion and makes it perfectly
certain that the friends of that house, no less than its enemies, conspire
to depress it and strip it of its most lawful patrimony. Here,
however, little or nothing to the advantage of the Palatines is expected
from the side of the Austrians. They even think of recalling Ro
and putting a stop to the negotiations altogether, recognising their
delusive character and that their sole aim is to deceive England with
vain hopes. The wisest here disapprove of the ambassador's
proceedings and consider that his Majesty may claim to have been
affronted by his having had recourse to parliament, which has never
at any time had the right to interfere in the transactions with foreign
princes, in the past. On the other hand the Imperial Agent here
does not seem to have any objection to the Frenchman's move at a
moment when England is incapable of supplying any succour to
the empire. He claims that if parliament disapproves of the scheme
for an alliance that will serve as a sufficient pretext to justify the
plans of the Austrians when, as he fears, the negotiations are broken
off without any result, and at the same time it will serve as a warning
to the Princes of the Empire that the offices of France are hindering
not only the restoration of the Palatine House, which is so greatly
desired by the Protestants of Germany, but also the means for restoring
peace in the whole province.
I am sending full particulars of all this to the Secretary Vico
London, the 23rd May. 1642.
[Italian ; the part in italics deciphered.]
57. Thadio Vico, Venetian Resident in Germany, to the
Doge and Senate.
In the affair of the Palatine they have been discussing some
modification of the emperor's proposals and they meet on the
evening and the morning of every day. The English ambassador
considers all this merely a device to promote delay. He says
that Denmark is the only straightforward one among the mediators
and so little can be expected. Most of all he is filled with
astonishment and roundly condemns the demands of Bavaria,
which are so high, of 13 millions for the restitution of his dominions
to the Palatine. The ambassador says that with this
money England could collect forces sufficient not only to recover
the Palatinate but to subdue, in a manner of speaking, the whole
of the empire (dicendo egli che con questo denaro si potria dall'
Inghilterra metter insieme tante forze che non solo bastassero a
ricuperare il Palatinato ma a soggiogar per modo di dire tutto l'
Vienna, the 24th May, 1642.
58. Zuanne Zon, Venetian Secretary at the Hague, to the
Doge and Senate.
Yesterday there arrived from England one Muri, first gentleman
of the king's bedchamber, with news from there but little to the
taste of the queen. (fn. 8) They have not yet divulged the particulars,
but people believe that he brings word of his Majesty's decision
to undertake the journey to Scotland, and if possible to send his
eldest son here, to avoid, in any event, the danger of having to
submit to the wishes of the Parliament.
The States have admonished their ambassadors to hasten their
departure, without delay, seeing that affairs become more and
more confused over there. Since it is enough for them to make
a show of a good disposition in order to satisfy the queen, they
want the rumours of his Majesty's journey to Scotland to afford
them a colourable pretext for the deliberation they show over
the despatch of that embassy.
The second daughter of the House of Orange has died at the
age of eleven, after a painful illness. The Queen of England
returned recently from Amsterdam, where they regaled her but
did not give her royal honours.
The Hague, the 26th May, 1642.
59. Giovanni Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in England,
to the Doge and Senate.
On Saturday the earl of Holland gave an account to parliament
of the complaints reported, made by the French ambassador
touching the manoeuvres of the English minister about proposals
for an alliance between the imperialists and this crown. He
represented how improper such a proposal was ; the necessity
amid the circumstances of these times, to avoid anything likely
to arouse the suspicions of the Most Christian and render him
definitely hostile. These offices were heard with approval on
account of the natural dislike felt by this nation towards the
House of Austria, to the desire to oblige France with proofs of
respect to keep her from interesting herself in the affairs of the
royal house here, and to enable parliament to create a precedent
for interfering in the negotiations with the foreign ministers.
Accordingly, after discussing the best way of dealing with requests
of such a plausible character they decided to send deputies to
urge his Majesty to disavow the offers made by Ro, while adroitly
intimating to the king that they will never consent to an alliance
with the Austrians or to anything likely to cause offence to
France. Subsequently they appointed two commissioners with
instructions to assure him orally of these identical sentiments
and to take him a resolution in writing in which parliament
asserts that it has no information about Ro's suggestions and
that it will do everything in its power to prevent anything which
might tend to upset the friendly relations with the Most Christian,
which it is determined to maintain intact with all its might.
The ambassador has expressed his complete satisfaction with
these assurances, and invited England to make an alliance with
the king, his master, to compel the Austrians to make restitution
of the Palatinate. He hopes that in a short space Ro will be
recalled and the body of his transactions broken off. On the
other hand the partisans of the Palatine deeply resent this new
interference of France. They declare openly that it is aimed at
injuring that House and at the same time to increase the ill will
between the king and parliament with the object of keeping this
country involved for a long period in the distractions of the present
times, and they are waiting with anxious impatience to hear how
his Majesty will take that action.
It is still uncertain what decision the county of York will take
with regard to supporting the king's authority. To give a spur
to their deliberations his Majesty on Wednesday sent for the
people of those parts a second time. In lengthy offices he renewed
his demands for assistance for the defence of his person
and to avenge the insults which he receives every day from those
who have cast aside the respectful duty they owe him and are
trying to take away his authority and to end the ancient obedience
to the laws. He protests again and again that he will never
depart from the fundamental constitution of the kingdom and
will most faithfully endeavour to see that it is observed. The
king was heard with attention, but as the opinions of the nobles
did not coincide with those of the populace, the assembly was
dissolved without any decision, being prorogued until this day,
when it is definitely decided to give his Majesty their final decision
in response to his requests.
On the 5th of next month the assembly is to meet in Scotland
to discuss the present condition of his Majesty and thereafter
to decide upon such measures as are found to be best adapted
to the service and honour of that nation, to wit, whether they
shall take the royal side or else support the principles of the
parliament, or again whether they shall interpose actively to
facilitate the means for a just composition. It is not yet possible
to form an accurate opinion about what they will decide. Many
who are not blinded by partisan bias announce the most friendly
disposition towards the king's service. But others, strict disciples
of Calvinism, being very strongly prejudiced, support the
development of the plans of the Puritans. Their professions of
faith being identical, they would like to see the same similarity
in matters of liberty and licence. Accordingly it may be feared
that the opposition of this party may offer some obstacle to the
efforts of the other, which is sincerely anxious to see its king
released from the travail of the present disorders.
In the counties of Notingam and Arbi, both very populous,
all the substantial persons and gentlemen have unanimously
declared in favour of the king's cause. In the province of Wales
the devotion of the people is constantly receiving fresh confirmation.
They have sent a deputy to parliament with instructions
to represent to them that while they have up to the present
time paid all the taxes imposed on them, they will not consent
to pay any more until they have been shown how the money
collected has been employed ; nor will they do so while the command
of their militia remains in the hands of an individual who
is not approved by his Majesty, whom they protest their intention
to serve as loyal subjects, in conformity with the laws.
Meanwhile, three days ago orders reached the Great Seal
from the king directing him to send to York the archives of
documents and to warn all by proclamation that in future the
courts of civil justice will be held in that city, not in London,
as they used. It is thought that the object is to strip this city,
which shows itself so hostile to his interests, of the honour and
advantage which it has enjoyed in such large measure, from the
concourse of people here, who from time to time have flocked
here from all parts of the kingdom for the settlement of their
legal disputes, to give it subsequently to York and so encourage
the latter by the stimulus of this important advantage to hold
fast to his party.
The king has further asked parliament that they will send him
the book in which are registered all the acts which have been
passed up to the present. The motive for this request is not yet
apparent. Obedience has been refused to both demands by
decree which qualifies them as contrary to the laws of the country
and to the liberty of the subject.
Four ships have been sent these last days to the fortress of
Uls to fetch away the arms and munitions and bring them to the
Tower here. But when this was about to be done the inhabitants
and garrison of the town joined together and offered a
furious resistance ; refusing to allow their magazines to be despoiled
without the good pleasure of his Majesty. They also devised
plots against the commander personally, lamenting that he
refused the entry to his legitimate sovereign to that fortress,
inflicting so much shame on the royal name. The governor
being warned of these seditious designs immediately sent orders
to the captains of the militia of that district, so that by the
despatch of other troops they might supply him with the means
of repressing this disobedience. But they treated his orders
with contempt and refused to obey. The governor's hopes of
carrying out the commands of parliament having thus fallen
through, and being fearful of his own safety, he speedily sent
word here of what had happened, imploring assistance, otherwise
he represents he mistrusts his power to keep that town loyal to
him any longer. On this account the hopes of his Majesty's
most loyal servants are rising of being able to gather a party in
that district strong enough to relieve him from the troubles which
On the other hand parliament, shaken by news of such consequence
and equally apprehensive as to what the people of
York may decide, not to speak of the Scots, urgently attends to
make good all these incidents. They have sent other deputies to
Uls to reduce the people there to their duty. They have sent
a precept to all the sheriffs and other officials of York to do all
in their power to prevent the assembly which is to be held there
to-day, and they offer their protection by proclamation to those
who obey their orders, while on the other hand they threaten with
severe correction those who attempt to prevent their fulfilment.
With the Scots also they do not fail to conduct themselves in the
manner they consider best adapted to the circumstances. To
certain lords of influence present with his Majesty and the reputed
authors of these moves, parliament has sent an individual on
purpose to order them to come here without delay. (fn. 9) But instead
of obeying these lords have persuaded the king to have the man
arrested and imprisoned, as he has done. When parliament
learned of this they declared the lords enemies of the state. They
are making fresh efforts to secure their persons, and in the mean
time they are busy over another declaration against the actions
of his Majesty, to publish it to the people and increase if possible
the universal odium against him. Thus with the parties inflamed
to the very extreme of bitterness everything goes to show that
it will not be long before they appeal to arms or else agree upon
a composition. Those of most experience feel persuaded that
in view of the justice of his cause and the present disposition of
the people the king may be able in a few days to enforce obedience
and cause himself to be acknowledged for the virtuous and
excellent prince that he is (et li piu prattici si persuadono che in
riguardo alla giustitia della causa et alla dispositione de populi possa
il Re in pochi giorni farsi ubbedire et riconoscere per quel virtuoso
et ottimo Prencipe ch' egli e.)
Fortune continues to smile more and more on the rebels in
Ireland. For lack of money and food the English troops previously
sent there have mutined against their own commanders
and thus afforded an opportunity to the insurgents to win greater
advantages through the disorders of their opponents. (fn. 10) On
this account it is apprehended that the troubles of that kingdom
will be prolonged and very disastrous, with very little chance of
its being reunited under the dominance of England without great
difficulty, the latter country also being the subject of the most dismal
London, the 30th May, 1642.
[Italian ; the part in italics deciphered.]
60. Thadio Vico, Venetian Resident in Germany, to the
Doge and Senate.
The affair of the Palatine continues its troubled career amid
the most knotty discussions. Although they are trying to round
off the edges, yet here they take the line that it is impossible to
settle anything with any security, even if they wished, in the
present state of affairs in that kingdom, owing to which it is
not possible to know whether in the end the king or the parliamentarians
will have the upper hand ; and that in consequence
the whole of this treaty is in the air. Traumesdorf said as
much to me.
Vienna, the last day of May, 1642.