Venice
September 1656

Sponsor

Institute of Historical Research

Publication

Author

Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1930

Pages

256-267

Annotate

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

Citation Show another format:

'Venice: September 1656', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 30: 1655-1656 (1930), pp. 256-267. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=89823 Date accessed: 21 October 2014.


Highlight

(Min 3 characters)

September 1656

Sept. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
359. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
In pursuance of the orders issued by the Protector to the counties to elect members for the coming parliament, they all assembled the day before yesterday and while some nominated it is said that others could not agree and accordingly it has been postponed to another day. It cannot as yet be known whether those chosen are friendly to the present government or of a contrary disposition. It is known, however, that two chosen in this city are by no means well disposed towards the state, and consequently at the confirmation by the Protector and his Council they will undoubtedly be excluded, (fn. 1) as will many others, it being impossible for all to be of the Protector's party, and as this is what he desires it will be necessary to quash many and order a new election. As this city is situated in two counties, the electors on one side agreed and nominated the two mentioned, but on the other they have not been able to arrive at a conclusion, and so they met yesterday and again to-day to arrive at the desired result. The differences and confusion which have arisen over this nomination have caused great astonishment. They say that in former days this took place with the utmost calm and without the slightest commotion; so it is considered of bad augury; time will soon show whether this is true or false.
The manner in which these elections take place is remarkable. All those who have a vote for this election meet together and each man calls aloud the name of the person whom he wishes to be elected. In such a large gathering of people it is impossible to know who has the majority of votes, and so the nominees are carried shoulder high out of the meeting followed by all who gave them their votes. These being counted they find out who has the majority and is elected.
Recent news of the fleet reports that the squadron ordered to pass the Strait approached Malaga and inflicted considerable injury on the Spaniards there, setting fire to 8 large vessels in the port, spiking some guns on the mole, alarming the city by shelling it and engaging two galleys, the crews and soldiers of which all perished, some by the sword and the rest drowned. The news has greatly delighted the government as at last the fleet has done something. But it did not pursue the enterprise as after the acts related they re-embarked the soldiers and continued towards their destination for the release of the English slaves in the hands of the barbarians.
The ducal missives of the 4th August bring me confirmation of the victory over the Ottoman in the Dardanelles. I at once asked audience of the Protector to present the public letters and inform him of the event. But I shall have to wait, as no effort avails to obtain it quickly. The delay is due to their preoccupation over the coming parliament, which so engrosses his Highness's attention that he has not a moment to breathe. I am assured by Sir [Oliver] Fleming that when his Highness heard the news he expressed great delight and spoke highly of the Senate and such heroic and extraordinary actions. When the audience is granted, and I hope it will not be much longer, I will fulfil all the commands of your Excellencies.
I have communicated the news to all the foreign ministers at this court giving them full particulars of a victory that will be memorable through the ages. Every one expressed the utmost delight, extolling the glory of the republic before Christendom and the world. The whole city is certainly exceedingly delighted about it and many come to express their satisfaction. I respond suitably thanking them for their courtesy. I have also celebrated the occasion with bonfires and other demonstrations, going beyond my resources in order to keep up the public dignity, in the assurance that the state will not allow me to succumb under this extraordinary burden.
London, the 1st September, 1656.
Postscript:—After I had finished the above Sir [Oliver] Fleming sent me word to be at the palace at six o'clock, when I should have audience. I went and on arriving found the ambassador of Sweden with the Protector, who stayed there over two long hours. At the end of this time Fleming came and begged me in the name of his Highness to excuse him if he had to postpone the audience until Tuesday. He told me he regretted deeply that I had had to wait so long, but he was compelled to do this by affairs of great importance which arrived at that moment. He added many courteous and friendly expressions. I thanked him for the office and said I would wait upon the convenience of his Highness. So I must wait until Tuesday to fulfil the commands of your Excellencies.
[Italian.]
Sept. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
360. Domenico Zane, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
To resist the English fleet they have now got together ten galleys from all the squadrons, and these are now in Cadiz. The usual 14 English ships remain in sight of the island there, though without making any attempt, as they have done since the rest of the fleet parted company, which is seen no more in these waters. But thirty pirate vessels are appearing, and the people on the coasts are afraid of these alone.
Madrid, the 6th September, 1656.
[Italian.]
Sept. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
361. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Although Tuesday was appointed for my audience it was postponed until yesterday owing to the absence of Sir [Oliver] Fleming, who was detained for some days outside the city by affairs of state. I went to the palace at the time arranged and presented the Senate's letter to the Protector giving him full particulars of the victory. His Highness fully appreciated the communication and asked me to convey his heartiest congratulations to your Excellencies and his assurances of regard for the republic. He added that now the strength of the Turks was so attenuated it would be advisable for all the Christian powers to join forces with your Serenity to secure victories in every quarter, which would be certain with the Ottoman so weak. At this point I used the stimulus of merit and immortality to urge some resolution advantageous to your Serenity. I said what a glorious and pious action it would be to join the Venetian fleet with a squadron of his ships, which are lying idly at anchor, to act together in defence of the faith and so just a cause. He replied that he had nothing more at heart. He needed no incitement, in view of the dangerous state of Christendom, the need for help and the miraculous resistance offered by your Serenity, but as things are now constituted he must regretfully allow his good will to serve instead of the deeds that are desirable in an affair of such moment. If his present engagements which keep him very occupied did not stand in the way the most serene republic would see his words followed by effective deeds. He added many other courteous words showing a most friendly disposition, but they will always be void of effect for reasons known to the public wisdom.
I took this opportunity of presenting the other letter about the gift made by the Senate to the merchants of this nation of the ship Gran Prencipe fairly taken in a fight with the Turks at the Dardanelles some years ago. (fn. 2) I enlarged on this as evidence of the desire of the republic to gratify his Highness, as your Excellencies would always be glad to have opportunities of doing. I asked that orders might be given that English ships should not fly any flag except in favour of religion and Christendom. He expressed his appreciation of the generosity of the republic. He assured the Senate that it was not his intention that English ships should enter the service of the common enemy. It certainly was not done with his consent. Possibly the Turks finding ships in the ports of their dominion waiting for cargo had forced them to enter their service. (fn. 3) If it happened otherwise the captains would certainly deserve punishment, and he was ready to punish the master of the Gran Prencipe if it could be made clear in what manner he had entered the service of the Turks and consequently against Christendom. He repeated that this was very far from his intention and spoke at large of his esteem and regard for the republic. I thanked his Highness and told him your Excellencies were certain of his good disposition towards the public welfare, answering his civilities with the like.
London, the 8th September, 1656.
[Italian.]
Sept. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
362. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Even in the counties where there was some obstacle to nominating members for the coming parliament, elections have taken place after discussions and no small differences among the electors, as well as those communities which seemed indisposed to act for the reasons given. All the nominations having been made the list has been presented to his Highness for consideration, to confirm the desirable ones and reject those who do not fall in with his desires. But it seems that from the majority his Highness may promise himself all that he desires, and it is not expected that he will have to reject many. Yet some still maintain that in spite of the good intentions disclosed, from a knowledge of the individuals, changes and disorders will happen, as when the members find themselves assembled together, they will cast aside their personal feelings and take such resolutions and decisions as they consider best adapted and most necessary for the good of the state, stimulated by the constituencies which they represent.
To judge from appearances some change of government will follow at the opening of parliament a few weeks hence, as besides the general talk the Protector has directed Sir [Oliver] Fleming, who is the best informed and most skilful about the things done under other dispensations, to make diligent search among the papers which deal with the ancient governments and their form. Accordingly he is busily engaged on this duty, which clearly shows a desire to reform the present state, the need for which is shown in many ways.
In view of the descent of the Germans upon Italy, sent by the emperor against the duke of Modena, his feudatory, (fn. 4) reports from Paris state that the Most Christian wishes to form a defensive and offensive alliance with this state, Sweden and Portugal, and that the Cardinal has despatched a gentleman to Lisbon to make the proposal and negotiate the treaty. I have been on the watch for anything but I can see no sign of more than was arranged in the peace between France and England some months ago. I feel the more sure as the Ambassador Bordeos, instead of remaining here to negotiate this business, has been away in the country for several weeks, engaged in the diversions of the season, and nothing is said about his coming back soon. It is possible that he is acting secretly through his secretary, who is in London in charge of the embassy, but my efforts to discover some particulars covertly have proved fruitless. In any case it would be difficult to find out because of the cautious reserve with which affairs of this character are conducted at this Court. However, I will do what I can in a matter of such consequence to our province.
The English commissioners are almost daily at the Dutch embassy for the completion of the naval treaty between the two nations which has been so long in negotiation. Small difficulties which arise prevent a speedy issue, though the ambassador desires it earnestly. Certain ship-masters have this week presented a petition to his Highness and the Council complaining of outrages committed on them by the Dutch in the Indies. (fn. 5) This has astonished those who know that such papers have all been refused in the past. A committee has been appointed to make enquiry and report to the Council, so that it may decide what is best to be done. The knowing ones and some who love trouble and dissension seize upon this to foretell that great disturbances will infallibly follow. It is quite possible that some difference may rise between the two nations, as his Highness has sent a gentleman to the Hague (fn. 6) with a letter to the States demanding compensation for 24 English vessels, captured by the Dunkirkers when under Dutch convoy and it is not known what reply he will have or what satisfaction he can get. In his letter the Protector definitely taxes the Dutch with having allowed the English ships to be taken, as they offered no defence, and asserts that the captain of the convoy had been bribed by the Spaniards, and so the pirates were able to make the capture.
The ambassador of Sweden left last Saturday, receiving the highest marks of esteem from the government. His Highness presented him with his portrait surrounded by 16 large diamonds of pure rose, with four most noble horses and with more than 100 pieces of the finest white cloth ever manufactured in England, the whole to the value of over 4,000l. Ten superb horses were consigned to him to be presented to his master in the name of the Protector. The ambassador presented his Highness with the 7 horses which he has used for his coach throughout the embassy. The Court coaches accompanied him to the Tower where he went on board the Protector's barque and was taken to Gravesend; there he embarked on a war frigate of the state, which is ordered to carry him to Hamburg (fn. 7)
London, the 8th September, 1656.
[Italian.]
Sept. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
363. To the Resident in London.
Acknowledge his letters of the 11th and 18th ult. He must keep an eye on the alliance between England and Sweden and not lose sight of the union with Portugal. A matter equally worthy of consideration is the idea of Cromwell to send a gentleman to the Princes of Italy.
Ayes, 128. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Sept. 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
364. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Everyone at court is eagerly awaiting the opening of parliament to see what this very remarkable assembly will do. Some say it will be entirely devoted to the Protector, others fortell the contrary and the opinion is growing that the members will change their intentions when they are assembled together, putting aside their private feelings and thinking only of what will benefit the state and relieve the people who groan under their heavy burdens. The members elected have not yet been confirmed, but the idea persists that some will certainly be rejected who seem somewhat out of harmony with the sentiments of the autocrat. As his Highness wishes the assembly to be composed entirely of his partisans and supporters he tries to captivate some who are less inclined to him by blandishment and flattery, entertaining them at sumptuous banquets and heaping infinite courtesies on them, to win them for his side.
But in spite of all his efforts to control this assembly and render it completely subject to his will and although it seems that he can promise himself every sort of favour from the majority, his spirit is disturbed by the fear that something unexpected may suddenly crop up, since he cannot look into the hearts of the members, and he knows that words and promises are often deceptive and are often belied by the result. Accordingly his Highness has ordered his guards to be reinforced; that others be posted at the approaches of the city to prevent anyone not having a passport of the state from entering or leaving; has increased the number of the troops guarding the Tower of London and has summoned a council of war of all the officers of the army and the major generals, to meet in his presence in a few days.
All these measures are referred to other reasons. It is announced that they have intercepted letters of King Charles which have disclosed great designs against this state. But really they are for the protection of his own person, which he considers in no small peril with the coming session of parliament, seeing the representations and offices made in the king's name to induce the members to some virile action against the present domination and in favour of his cause. But unless there is some dissension among the troops, who form the support of the Protector, he has nothing to fear from any attempt against his person as they can guarantee him against any disaster and preserve him from every peril.
In Ireland, which is the part most opposed to the present rule and the easiest place in which to start trouble and revolt, they have recently discovered a plot to be exploded at the time parliament meets, supposed to be most favourable to the designs of those who do not like this government. They soon put everything right by imprisoning some, by putting others on their trial and by punishing the guilty, much to the chagrin of the supporters of the House of Stuart, who have been planning this for a long time in the hope that it might do some good for their cause. But the diligence used by his Highness in every quarter and the spies who are found in every corner of these kingdoms have prevailed over all the plans and intrigues of the opposite party.
They are eagerly awaiting the return of the envoy sent to the Hague about compensation for English ships under Dutch convoy captured by the Dunkirkers. It is said that he has other commissions, namely to exhort the States not to oppose Sweden and to rescind their decision to help Danzig, with a declaration that if Holland means to harass Sweden England will be obliged to defend that crown against any other state by the close alliance between them. With the close union of interest and religion between that monarch and this government, such representations might easily be made to the States, but no one who knows the advantages which the latter derive from Danzig and how useful it may be for them to defend that city and prevent it from falling into the hands of the Swedes will ever believe that the Dutch will go back on their deliberate decision, but will rather act on it with greater resolution. So this may lead to trouble and it is not unlikely that it might produce results by no means to the advantage of the two countries.
Nothing is heard of the fleet and they are eagerly waiting for news, as they have had none for a long time. The bad weather of the present season accounts for the delay and makes every one anxious and desirous to hear.
The Dunkirk corsairs are so effectively bottled up that they are no longer seen and they make no more booty. But with the approach of severe weather and the cold it will be impossible for the ships of this country to keep their station opposite the ports of Flanders without manifest peril of perishing in the furious storms to which they would be exposed; so at that moment the Dunkirkers will be able to resume their course and once more trouble this city as their little barques can sail in any wind and weather any storm.
The ambassador of Sweden is still in the river on the government ship which is to carry him to Hamburg, owing to the wind being contrary for his voyage to that port. This distresses him greatly as the delay involves him in discomfort and trouble.
London, the 15th September, 1656.
[Italian.]
Sept. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
365. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Any one who observes the care used by the Protector, not only in this city, but in all three kingdoms, and the good arrangements for securing his person against sudden strokes which might fall upon him in the time of the coming parliament must be convinced that nothing will happen to his prejudice and that he will get whatever he wants. Yet there are some who think otherwise and cherish the idea that disturbances will break out fomented by the supporters of King Charles. But these are so weakened by the harsh treatment the government steadily metes out to them that no hope is left of any good for his Majesty's cause though they passionately desire him to come into his own. To discredit the king of Scotland with the people and to check any intentions of parliament favourable to his cause, an attempt is made to fill them with fear and apprehension by representing him as having strong forces and a fleet to invade this kingdom and pointing out the injury and disturbance to the country of a new war. To inflame still more the feeling against him they announce that he has become a Catholic, as the unique means of arousing all the anger and indignation of the people professing other religions and the bitterest enemies of the Catholic faith and of all who bear that noble distinction.
King Charles is certainly desirous of making some attempt in the coming winter with the encouragement of the Spaniards who will give him assistance to recover his crown snatched from him by the ambition and pride of a subject of the lowest class. To this end he is collecting troops in Flanders, a few at a time, and quarters have been given him in that province. He has issued patents for raising two regiments of Irish, one of Scots and one of English. Those who are entrusted with this hope to get them without difficulty or expense. But it is very doubtful if this hope can be realised and that they can work on goodwill alone since everything indicates that it will be impossible to collect soldiers in these realms for his Majesty, even using the utmost secrecy, because of the spies who are posted everywhere for this purpose and who keep the closest watch. If they succeed in getting together these four regiments, quarters will be given them in Flanders also. Commissions have reached the ministers there from the Catholic Court with orders to allow troops to enter and leave as well as everything else pertaining to King Charles and to grant dwelling places in every Spanish port to all English, Irish and Scots on the licence and recommendation of that king only. For the winter they expect in the ports of Flanders, which will then be open and free, a fleet composed for the most part of English ships seized there at the moment of the rupture with others taken by the Biscay pirates, which will serve for King Charles. His Majesty is daily expecting the duke of York, who has taken leave of the Most Christian. His arrival will mean effective help, as besides his own sword he will doubtless bring a number of Irish, now in that service, who will not leave him and will follow him out of devotion and their desire to sacrifice themselves for him.
The Protector is informed of all these plans, as he has persons bought with his gold about the king at Bruges, who pretend to serve his Majesty and betray him, informing Cromwell of all that is done and planned. So he has all the ports well guarded and every day one sees soldiers marching towards the coast. Hull has the largest garrison as being most suspect and as being the place on which his Majesty seems to have his eyes fixed. Besides this they have doubled all the guards, both horse and foot, set up new corps de garde in many parts of London, summoned to this city the whole army of Scotland and show great activity in securing their side and for checking any attempt to upset the present rule. His Highness sent for the mayor of this city and in an elegant, grave and imperious manner pointed out the present danger, his duty to try and clear the city of those evil influences that might arise, and recommended the most diligent vigilance. He did the same with all the army leaders and major generals in a special council held recently in his presence. He is thus trying to secure a position in which he has nothing to fear from the efforts of his enemies or the unfriendly intentions of those who are ill affected to the present rule. To purge London of all evil humours he issued a proclamation the day before yesterday directing all those who bore arms against the state to leave this city by to-day for their country houses and not to return for six months under penalties reserved for the higher courts. In spite of this order many of the most suspect and known for their devotion to their natural prince have been thrown into prison. The houses where they were supposed to be were searched and some were arrested to see whether their dealings and understanding with King Charles can be extracted from them by torture (per veder con tormenti di tirargli dalla bocca le prattiche e l'intelligenze del Be Carlo).
Sir Henry Vane, a man distinguished by his character and birth, a leader of the Presbyterians and a mortal enemy of the king and of this government, who has written and spoken violently against the same, was sent last Tuesday a prisoner to Carisbrook castle in the isle of Wight where the late king was confined before his condemnation. This was done for fear that Vane by his eloquence might sow bad seed in parliament likely to generate trouble, which the government wishes to avoid as far as possible. As a further precaution, besides the guards posted at all approaches to the city, and from fear that passports might facilitate mischief by being obtained under false names the Protector has decided not to issue any more to anyone soever until these furies cease and the temperature has cooled somewhat.
Besides the conspiracy discovered in Ireland they have found another being planned in England to be kindled at the time of parliament. All has been put straight by the skilful arrangements made, by putting the culprits on trial and other necessary measures. It must be considered a misfortune for King Charles that all his designs are discovered and all his machinations end in a manner contrary to that expected.
In the fear that when parliament opens its session next Wednesday the troops might mutiny and proceed thither riotously to demand the pay due to them which has been reserved for reasons previously given, in addition to the payment made to them at once, although the time of the last tax of 60,000l. a month for satisfying the soldiers has not yet expired, another assignment has been made to them so that they may be sure to have their pay at the proper time with the renewal of this tax, charging the people with this very considerable burden for six months to come, at the end of which it will be renewed for six months more. The people grumble but have to bow to the yoke as their remonstrances produce no effect. They submit the more readily as they are led to believe that this payment will hearten the soldiers to defend these states from invasion as designed by the king of Scotland, and to keep at a distance a war that would be injurious to the people, so depressed and exhausted and who still feel the effects of past disturbances.
The Most Christian ambassador returned from the country yesterday and went to audience of his Highness with whom he had a long secret conference. So far as I can gather it was to ask help in the present weakness of France. No one knows what answer he got from his Highness, but appearances indicate that it was not favourable as present conditions are too contrary to permit any weakening of the troops so necessary for his own existence and to maintain his authority.
News comes from several quarters that the most serene republic, since the defeat of the Ottoman fleet, is pursuing its victorious career, has captured the island of Tenedos and is proceeding with other considerable undertakings. Every one is eagerly waiting for confirmation. God grant it may come as desired and that further successes may be added to these victories for the relief of distressed Christendom and the greater glory of the Senate.
London, the 22nd September, 1656.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Sept. 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci.
Spagna.
Venetian.
Archives.
366. Domenico Zane, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
Peace negotiations with France. The affair of Valenza makes an adjustment more difficult. (fn. 8) But that which is not less vexatious is the misfortune to the ships of the Indies, which were so badly wanted and which indeed held all the gold and plate of the fleet to the address of the king. Word arrived yesterday from Cadiz, brought there by a frigate, which was in their company, of how the Don Giovanni dell' Oglio, the name of one of the ships, had sunk on the voyage, and the Almirante, which is the other, was on the point of being taken by the English fleet. This still remains off Cadiz, where the engagement was seen quite plainly. (fn. 9) The vessel had already lost its mast and helm, so that its rescue seemed practically hopeless. Of four small ships which were in company with these, with a certain quantity of plate, two have fallen into the hands of the English, one was sunk and the fourth is this one which, escaping by miracle has brought this news of this disaster.
The vessel engaged carries five millions, the bulk of it to the address of the king. Orders were sent at once to the ten galleys stationed at Cadiz to go out immediately to the rescue, but there is little hope of their delivering it.
Madrid, the 27th September, 1656.
[Italian.]
Sept. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
367. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
As arranged the new parliament was opened the day before yesterday, all the members and representatives of the three kingdoms having arrived in London. Before entering their usual hall the members heard a sermon in Westminster Abbey at which the Protector was present, who went thither in great pomp escorted by all his guards, horse and foot, by all the gentlemen and others of his Court and by his Council also. The sermon over they met in another chamber where his Highness delivered a fine, long and eloquent speech in which he urged the members to support the war with Spain as being very opposite to England, not only in sentiment but in religion and because they had played this kingdom a trick more than once. He insisted upon this for he knew that he had arrived at this rupture contrary to the laws of England, viz. without the consent of parliament, necessary in such cases, and he was afraid the members might take exception to this and bring forward overtures for peace at the instigation of the people, who are tired of the war. He commended to their care the preservation of internal peace. He laid great stress upon this as he knows the numerous plots to create trouble and dissension in the nation. He expressed his personal wish that men should be allowed liberty of conscience, except for the Roman Catholic faith. Knowing that the members greatly resented the exile of Sir [Henry] Vane and the imprisonment of other old parliamentarians considered suspect, he expressed the intention to tell them another time of the motives which had led him to take this step.
Cromwell then departed to Whitehall and the members went to their usual room. As the Protector did not intend many of the members to enter that assembly, as not entirely well affected, he ordered that no one should be admitted who did not present at the door a certain ticket, devised for the purpose. Accordingly it was observed that 120 members were refused, and these are excluded from the congress, and their constituencies will undoubtedly remonstrate. As those refused might at another meeting follow the others and enter surreptitiously, it has been ordered that every time parliament meets the members shall be bound to receive and hand in their tickets as on the first day, to prevent deceit and fraud.
All that day was spent in appointing the Speaker, Sir [Thomas] Widrington, a commissioner of the Treasury and a competent man, entirely devoted to his Highness. At the second meeting they passed two acts, one condemning all the designs of King Charles, declaring that they will do everything possible to thwart them, and declaring enemies and traitors all those who support and assist him. The second is a remonstrance about their excluded colleagues. Nothing else has happened so far, nor can one anticipate what will come, though a few days will show; but appearances indicate that everything will proceed in accordance with the desires of the ruler. Yet they are still apprehensive and to make doubly sure various gentlemen believed to be partisans of the king of Scotland, have been arrested, as they feared to leave them at large in their country houses because exile from this city would not suffice to dissipate their evil intentions against the state. In London all those found without employment whether English or foreigners are taken by force and enrolled as soldiers to strengthen the guards. As the city had a quantity of arms stored in certain magazines in case of sudden emergency, the Protector, becoming suspicious, had them taken away to the Tower of London, which at present is guarded by 12 companies of soldiers, instead of the usual four. In addition to the regulation about passports the master of the posts has been directed not to give horses to any one who has not a ticket of the secretary of state. This is intended as a check against plots against the state. But in spite of all there are some who risk their lives secretly every day, as if they were found they would doubtless surfer exemplary punishment.
In consideration of numerous services rendered to the state in Portugal by an English merchant named Mainard his Highness has given him the title of consul general for this nation in that country, sending his patent this week under the great seal of England. (fn. 10) As they wish to keep up a good correspondence with Portugal and there is no sure means of transmitting letters, they have had three small frigates with oars built to carry persons and letters from England to Lisbon. They will be ready for service next October, and it is hoped they will give satisfaction, especially to the merchants owing to their trade and correspondence with that mart.
In your Excellencies' letters which reach me this week I notice the confirmation of the capture of Tenedos. Everyone rejoices and Sir [Oliver] Fleming, on behalf of his Highness expressed his delight. I thanked him warmly.
London, the 29th September, 1656.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Salvetti, on the other hand says, “Questa citta di Londra ha fatto l'elezione de’ suoi sei … tenuti tutti per huomini da bene. Se il resto saranno tali si potra sperar she tutto passera a sodisfattione del Sig. Protettore. Brit. Mus. Add MSS. 27962 P, f. 94. But of the six Ald. Thomas Foot, Ald. Sir Christopher Pack, Ald. Thomas Adams, Richard Brown, Theophilus Biddulph and John Jones, the last four were not admitted. Parl. History, Vol. xxi., page 10.
2 On 21 June, 1655. See page 70 above.
3 Printed with some alteration in Barozzi e Berchet: Relazioni. Inghilterra, pages 408–9. The date is given wrongly as 18 September.
4 The duke had arranged with the French to invade the Milanese, and besieged Valenza. Appeal was made to the emperor who decided to send a force to help Milan, under Baron Enkenfort. Nani: Hist. de la Republica Veneta, Vol. ii., pages 407–8, 431; Mercurius Politicus, Aug. 28–Sept. 4.
5 Capt. Robert Hackwell and others, complaining of some 1,000 mariners plundered and about 12 ships taken and plundered. But it came before the Council on Aug. 5 o.s. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1656–7, page 57; Sainsbury: Court Minutes of the East India Co. 1655–9, page 109.
6 Mr. Rosin. Thurloe: State Papers, Vol. v., page 413.
7 Christian Bond. He went on board the Taunton, Capt. Nathaniel Brown, at Chatham on Sept. 5 n.s. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1656–7, page 423.
8 Besieged by the duke of Modena supported by the French. It surrendered on 16 September o.s. Thurloe: State Papers Vol. v., page 385.
9 The Admiral escaped to Cadiz. Two merchantmen escaped to Gibraltar. The Rear Admiral was taken. The action took place on 9–19 September. Duro: Armada Espanola Vol. v., pages 23–4. Firth: Last Years of the Protectorate Vol. i., pages 51–2.
10 Thomas Maynard was appointed by letters patent dated 27 August o.s. Thurloe: State Papers, Vol. v., page 375.