408. Gio. Battista Nani, Venetian Ambassador in France,
to the Doge and Senate.
It becomes ever more manifest that the Dutch are not whole
hearted in the campaign and they will become even more reserved
when they find that Dunkirk is the objective. The English also
are watching results closely and there is some apprehension that
the Spaniards may avail themselves of this enterprise to induce
the English to make some positive declaration and further that
they may take the opportunity to avenge themselves for the
hearty welcome which France has given to the Prince of Wales,
much to their distaste.
Advices of England enclosed.
Moret, the 7th August, 1646.
409. Advices from London, the 26th July, 1646.
The peace proposals have been sent to the king by 6 members,
two of the Upper and four of the Lower House, with instructions
to present them and not to wait more than ten days for his definite
answer, after which they are to return with the peace arranged
or broken off for good. They think they have the king so much
at their mercy that they will not give him time to communicate
with any one or to take counsel from France or from his wife.
She is not even mentioned in the conditions, some members of
the Commons having remarked with threats that this will make
the Prince of Wales repent of having gone to her. It is thought
that the king will have to sign all that is put before him, without
gaining any advantage, either by argument or by force. Parliament
is also pressing his Majesty to send strong orders to the
Marquis of Ormond to hand over Dublin and all the other places
in Ireland to their nominee. But while they believe that the king
will be forced to consent, it is not thought that the marquis or
the people will obey such a violent order.
The Houses have directed that the duke of York shall come
to London, but that all his household shall be dismissed immediately
on his arrival, and that commissioners shall provide for his
maintenance and education. They have taken another important
step in breaking the old seal of the realm and authorising only
the one which parliament has been using for some time ; all acts
under the original seal, since the separation of the king from
parliament, being annulled. They have also directed the
demolition of many fortresses, which were erected during the war
and are now superfluous and might serve as a nest, for fresh
The French ambassador Bellievre has arrived in London,
being received with every honour. But as the peace conditions
have already been forwarded he comes too late for affairs and
will serve rather for the interests of France and for mere appearances.
410. Giovanni Soranzo, Venetian Bailo at Constantinople,
to the Doge and Senate.
The affair of the English ambassador has gone headlong to the most
extravagant lengths. The merchants are so fiercely eager against
him that by the power of gold they have obtained a catserif of the king
whereby he declares that the ambassador is not to have authority
over them, the Grand Turk taking them under his protection, with
the maintenance of the business, and they have solemnly chosen a
leader for themselves, (fn. 1) who has been to audience of the Vizier, the
Mufti and other ministers. By these he was invested and received
as ambassador until another comes. They also wanted the present
ambassador to be dismissed and sent away immediately, offering a
million as a security that another will come immediately without
prejudice to friendly relations.
The French ambassador has worked hard to put the matter straight,
though many say without the necessary warmth. Yet he says that
the first Vizier promised to order the merchants to return to their
obedience to the ambassador. But the catserif obtained by the
merchants through Fashi Pasha, the king's son in law, has upset
everything. Up to the present they have certainly spent more than
80,000 reals. They have also obtained licence for the ships to go and
two of them have already sailed.
The merchants asked me for an audience, and though the
ambassador has behaved better and we have exchanged compliments,
I received them. I took pains to be agreeable to them, in the interests
of the state, since all of them are dependents of the parliament,
and it may happen that your Excellencies might have need of applying
to England for levies and for ships, so I would not show myself
altogether opposed to them. They spoke most respectfully and said,
that if it had not been for the war they would willingly have referred
the matter to my direction. The paper they gave me is very lengthy
and has all about the pretensions of the ambassador and his violent
methods. There is one particular that the ambassador said to the
chiasso who went to release those kept prisoners in his house, that
he was to tell the Vizier that all those men were rebels against the
Grand Turk because they had recently caused a ship to sail from
Venice to Candia full of arms and munitions, and from Candia for
Smyrna, to lade it with wheat and other provisions to take back to
Candia. This circumstance is most emphatically denied by the
ambassador, but I think it not unlikely that he said it, to discredit
the merchants, who have expressed themselves as very pleased with
my behaviour to them. Accordingly I shall abide by a useful
neutrality in this most difficult affair.
The Vigne of Pera, the 10th August, 1646.
[Italian ; deciphered.]
411. Agreement made with Captain George Scort for the
hire of his ship James the Scot, with 70 sailors and 45 guns. He
promises obedience to any commander put over him and to serve
with the ship in all eventualities. He is to be given the flag
of St. Mark.
Approved in the Senate on the 14th August, 1646.
Ayes, 136. Noes, 0. Neutral, 11.
412. Gio. Battista Nani, Venetian Ambassador in France,
to the Doge and Senate.
Some English troops have arrived at Calais. The advices of
England are enclosed.
Moret, the 14th August, 1646.
413. Advices from London, of the 2nd August, 1646.
The deputies sent to take the peace proposals to the king
are supposed to have arrived as their letters have come from
York, and his Majesty's decision is awaited with great impatience.
Meanwhile Bellievre has had audience of parliament, in which he
offered the mediation of his king for peace, and asked for a
passport to the king here to facilitate the treaty. The Houses
showed him every outward honour and readily granted the
passport. But as regards the essence of his business they passed
an extraordinary resolution that the disputes between the king
and parliament did not admit of any mediation or negotiation
whatsoever from foreign powers, who should not meddle with
such intimate affairs of the kingdom.
Worcester has surrendered to Fairfax on very hard terms. (fn. 2)
The garrison are granted their lives, but with the exception of a
few officers and soldiers they must give up their horses and arms.
Earl Onel, general of the Catholics in Ireland, after the great
victory reported a few weeks ago, has defeated another large
force and is consolidating his hold on the country by occupying
the strongest places there.
414. Gio. Battista Nani, Venetian Ambassador in France,
to the Doge and Senate.
The Prince of Wales arrived at Fontainebleau the day before
yesterday with his mother. As arranged the queen regent with
the king went to meet them a short way from the chateau. He
will only stay three or four days, and as he keeps his incognito
the foreign ministers will not have to pay their respects.
They are very apprehensive about peace in that country, not
being able to endure under the very eyes of this monarchy the
planting of a popular republic, powerful in itself, by its adherents
and by the correspondence which religion gives it in the very
bowels of this kingdom. The king there who is no longer
considered as anything but a shadow, has not yet consented to
sign the treaty proposed before he has shown it to Bellievre,
whom he was momentarily expecting. But necessity compels
The advices are enclosed.
Moret, the 21st August, 1646.
415. Advices from London, of the 9th August, 1646.
The peace proposals made to the king are substantially : that
peace shall be established by a perpetual act of parliament ;
that his Majesty shall confirm all past treaties between both
parliaments and what is done between them for the peace ; that
he shall observe the religion established by a synod of the two
countries ; that all archbishops, bishops and inferior orders
of the Anglican Church shall be suppressed, and the Houses
shall dispose of their revenues as they think fit ; that the laws
against the Catholics shall be renewed and enforced, so that the
mass shall not be read anywhere in the kingdom, and in particular
at Court ; that as a protection against their intrigues and against
the Jesuits a form of oath shall be prescribed renouncing the
authority of the pope, the adoration of the mass and other
essential points of the Catholic faith, and that recusants shall be
punished according to law ; that the control of the army shall
rest with the two Houses and those deputed by them for 20
years, after which parliament shall make such arrangements
as it sees fit ; that for this purpose it may raise money as it sees
fit ; that appointments shall be made by parliament, but that all
his Majesty's acts since he separated from parliament shall be
null, and those of parliament under the new seal valid ; that all
treaties with the Catholics of Ireland shall be broken and the war
there carried on by the two kingdoms ; that Princes Rupert and
Maurice and many other persons named, of those most intimate
with the king, shall be excluded from the peace and pardon, so
that the few who still remain of that party and those who have
been the most faithful are to be persecuted and punished and
their goods confiscated and distributed as parliament may
choose. Nothing is said about the queen, but the prohibition
of the mass at Court is understood as excluding her from the
416. Giovanni Battista Nani, Venetian Ambassador in
France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Prince of Wales has returned to St. Germain with his
mother. Offices not being strictly admitted, I expressed myself
to the queen upon his arrival and she was much pleased. With
his stay here prolonged I shall have an opportunity of paying
my respects in person.
The queen has received a fresh delight in her little daughter, (fn. 3)
whom she left newly born in England, when she had to take to
flight, and whose nurse has contrived by cunning to get the child
out of the hands of parliament and has brought her to France,
arriving in perfect health.
The sheet from London is enclosed.
I have spoken to Lesle, who offered the levy, in conformity
with the instructions of the 28th July. If he makes me any
definite proposals I will report them punctually.
Moret, the 28th August, 1646.
417. Advices from London, the 16th August, 1646.
The Ambassador Bellievre was welcomed by the king at
Newcastle with extraordinary satisfaction. When the peace
proposals were imparted to him his Majesty asked the deputies
what powers they had to treat. They replied that they had
none, but only to hear his Majesty's will and report it. The
king said he would have liked parliament to send deputies with
powers to treat upon the articles, as some were of such a character
that he could not agree to them without alteration. The deputies
have gone and, with the negotiations practically broken off, it
remains to see what parliament will decide.
Many people are flocking to Newcastle, rousing the suspicions
of the Scots that the royalists are gathering, and they have
issued a severe edict expelling all those who have borne arms
against the two kingdoms. The gentleman sent by the king to
Montrose with orders to dismiss his troops, has returned. He
reports that the marquis is ready to do this provided safe terms
are granted to him and to those who have followed him. He is
one of those excluded from pardon in the peace. They have
accordingly sent orders a third time with the threat that if he
does not obey he will forthwith be declared a traitor and rebel
and dealt with according to law.
The duke of York has arrived in London from Oxford and
received a state welcome but all his suite has been dismissed at
once and new officers and a new household have been appointed
for him. In Ireland the Catholics continue their successes, having
occupied various places of importance.