Venice
May 1657

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

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1931

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47-59

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'Venice: May 1657', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 31: 1657-1659 (1931), pp. 47-59. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=89998 Date accessed: 19 September 2014.


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May 1657

May 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
39. Francesco Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The assembly of the clergy was on the point of winding up, having settled about their grant which they had voted and the means of paying it to his Majesty, but a request from the queen of England having been adroitly conveyed to these ecclesiastics for some succour, the conclusion is postponed. But it will not be for very long as it is understood that the prelates are generally disposed and resolved to make a suitable offering to the queen aforesaid.
Paris, the 1st May, 1657.
[Italian.]
May 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
40. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The most important affair engaging this Court at present is still unsettled though it occupies everyone's attention to the exclusion of all else and men long for a final decision. At the last conference between the Protector and the parliamentary committee which took place the day before yesterday his Highness condemned the actions of the long parliament, which made war on the king, as well as its successor. After blaming these for the greater exaltation of the present one he handed the deputies a paper to be communicated to parliament, containing divers articles on which he asked their decision and a written reply. The most considerable of these are that the Protector, knowing that the sum of 1,300,000l. voted by parliament cannot suffice for the maintenance of the naval and military forces, for the support of ministers to foreign powers and for divers other expenses necessarily attached to the crown, asks that it may be increased to 2 millions or at least to 1,900,000l. a year. He wishes to know in what manner this money will come into the exchequer, who is to have the custody and who the control. He wishes, in the interval of parliament, that all that he does as king shall have the same effect and force as if parliament had done it. He wishes that the members who are elected every three years to compose a parliament shall not be accepted or rejected by a committee of parliament but by the king alone. He wishes the act of the long parliament denouncing as a traitor any one who professes to desire a king or aspires to be one, to be annulled. Upon this last Cromwell has shown more scruple than he need since by the laws of England as soon as any one is raised to the royal station all previous defects, errors or incapacities are cancelled and wiped out. There is more than one example of this in the olden time, among others that of Henry VII. He was exiled from England and declared a rebel. On his return to England he defeated Richard III in battle and being raised to the station of king by parliament that alone, without any subsequent act, annulled all the sentences against him. The same thing appears clearly with Queen Elizabeth who was declared by parliament illegitimate and incapable of succeeding but being afterwards admitted to the crown, that alone was considered to exempt her from the previous acts, and although these were never repealed and are still in force, nothing more was said of them, as if they had never existed.
The reply to these articles will drag out the affair and it is believed that his Highness has done this on purpose to gain time, for the reasons already given, to fortify himself in the interval and make himself formidable and unconquerable against those who may wish to oppose him. Meanwhile he is expecting men from Ireland and Scotland who are now on the march, and from all parts he is drawing in his friends, dependants and supporters towards London, securing himself from those who are most to be feared and most suspect. All these things make it probable that he will not refuse a second time what has been offered him and he is only procrastinating for greater advantage and to profit by time and by setting everything on a permanent and durable basis so that he need have nothing to fear.
They have not yet examined the conspirators recently discovered because the mass of other affairs on hand has prevented it, and it is postponed because now the conspiracy has come to light there is no longer reason to fear any commotion. Nevertheless every day they discover something more and further intrigues of these sectaries. On the river, the day before yesterday, they found four barges laden with knives, to the number of 20,000 which were to serve for their detestable designs, to kill in one night all the people of the country except themselves and the others of their party. A book written entirely in cipher has also been found of which they have succeeded in deciphering a good part which shows that their intentions are what I reported last week. It also contains an invitation to all of their way of thinking to unite in a body and assist the realisation of their work, their plan being, with sword in hand and according to their own understanding and knowledge, as is stated in this same book, to give their judgment upon the power, upon the laws, upon the government, upon the office of magistrates, upon the administration of justice, upon rights and privileges of every kind. With regard to the manner in which they propose to put their designs into execution, this consists in avenging themselves, as they call it, on false prophets, on the kings of the earth, on their armies, on all the inhabitants and powers of Babylon, by which name they designate all the potentates of the world except themselves, in conferring the supreme legislative power on the person who they declare will come to earth to reign for a thousand years and in setting up a Sanhedrem, as they call it, or a supreme council of people selected from among themselves which will represent the whole body of the Saints by which title they mean themselves and those of the same way of thinking. They add that now is the day when it is all to happen and so they must comport themselves like princes under the monarchy which they say is to come, governing according to their lights, which means at their discretion and not permitting any pastors but their own, so in this way they would put an end to magistrates, churches, laws and everything at one stroke. If God had not permitted the discovery of these machinations this kingdom would have offered a great spectacle, as these men are firm and steadfast in their false opinions, and inflamed and infuriated they would not have spared anyone from their barbarities, so we all have occasion to return thanks to the Almighty for bringing to naught a mine that would have caused universal destruction and ruin.
6000 men are all ready to send to France to serve and strengthen the Most Christian. They will be put on ship at a moment's notice and will be taken to Cales, proceeding thence to unite with the French army and fight in Flanders against the Spaniards. Some believe that they are to go elsewhere but it is more probable that they will not remove far from that province, the other places where the French forces are engaged being too remote for the English. No one has yet been appointed to the command of this considerable force. It is said that it will be given to Sir [John] Rinaldi, an experienced man who has given proof of his ability and courage, having performed magnificent deeds of arms for this state. There was to have been a review of all these troops lately but at the very moment when it was to take place the order was countermanded for a week. The reason for this is not known. Some think it is due to news that has reached the Protector of the resumption of close negotiations between the crowns with hope of a happy issue ending in the general peace which is so necessary to the world. But with things as they are at present there is no sign of any good. Caesar's death (fn. 1) makes the French hold back and leads them farther from it than ever as it increases their confidence of great successes and large conquests.
From Paris we hear of the conclusion of an offensive and defensive alliance with this state, without including Sweden, but they will not admit it here. Appearances however indicate that it is not fallacious since it is known for certain that Locart announced that he was leaving that Court and he had given up the house where he lived at Paris. He did this on the pretext that he had to go to London since the Protector has consented to the desire of parliament to make him king. But the real reason was that he had to go to Flanders to command the forces. It is whispered that he is to have a considerable post in the direction of the troops which are to be sent from here under Rinaldi. So if this last is nominated he will only command them on the voyage and until they arrive in Flanders.
London, the 4th May, 1657.
[Italian.]
May 11.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
41. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
As parliament desires nothing so much as the speediest possible conclusion to its important affair with the Protector, it has been more than usually diligent in its sessions this week, spending many more hours over them than in the past. The principal motive is to weigh, examine and decide upon the articles presented by his Highness to the deputies, of which I reported the most important. All those taken in hand up to the present have been settled without the smallest difficulty. Only a few remain for consideration and it is reckoned that between to-day and to-morrow these also will be done with especially as they are less difficult and more acceptable. So it is supposed that on Monday parliament will proceed to Whitehall to inform the Protector of the satisfaction that the assembly has decided to give him beyond all that he desires, and then wait for his reply. Appearances indicate that this will not be greatly delayed, and one may also predict that it will coincide with the intentions of parliament and with the desires and ambition of him who laid the first foundations of this great fabric, especially as his Highness will have received complete satisfaction corresponding to all his requests and desires.
I have been making extensive enquiries to discover something about the secret articles in the recent treaty between France and England. At length after no slight effort I have succeeded in finding out about seven, which are the most considerable and which have been recommended by both sides to the strictest secrecy. I lose no time in communicating them. The first contains that the former treaties between Henry IV and Queen Elizabeth and the others between Louis XIII and King James shall be renewed. The second that the sum of 4 million lire lent by Queen Elizabeth to Henry the Great, king of France, with the interest liquidated at 13 millions shall be paid to the republic of England, as standing in place of the late king and that they shall pay 1½ million lire a year until the debt is fully discharged. The third that in consideration of this payment the republic of England will furnish and maintain 12 ships of war in the Mediterranean to unite with the French fleet from whose commander they shall receive their orders and directions for action against Spain; they are also obliged to maintain six ships before Dunkirk to keep out food. Fourth that the republic of England shall furnish the king of France with 40 ships of war to assist his Majesty in recapturing Dunkirk and Gravelines, and when they are taken the king will assist the republic to take Nieuport and Ostend. Fifth that between France and England there shall be an offensive and defensive alliance towards all and against all. Sixth that the king of England, the dukes of York and Gloucester and the English lords declared guilty of high treason, shall leave France without hope of return, so long as the treaty lasts, and those who have employment in the French forces must resign it; that the widowed queen, as a daughter of France, shall not leave, and that in exchange the republic of England shall not receive or shelter the enemies of France. Seventh that in all the towns and districts in France where the English dwell they may build churches in the faubourgs for the exercise of their faith with the same security as French subjects of the Reformed religion, and that the latter may say their prayers in these churches, in French, and enjoy fully all the privileges which have been granted to them by certain edicts, for the execution of which the whole English nation constitutes itself surety and pledge.
Such is the gist of what I have learned about these articles, which seem favourable to the English and correspondingly disadvantageous for the French. On this side they have already begun to carry out some of their obligations under the treaty, as six large ships have now been stationed for many weeks off the port of Dunkirk, thus simultaneously rendering the service which the French desire as well as their own cause by preventing the activities of the corsairs of Dunkirk and Ostend, who have not found it so easy of late to wander and plunder.
To-day is appointed for the general muster of the six regiments of infantry who have been picked out for service in France. There are 6000 men all fine seasoned troops capable of rendering the best service. The command in chief is entrusted to Sir [John] Rinaldi (fn. 2) and to Locart, at present staying at Paris as ambassador for this state, may be given the command of some regiment. This selection is very different from what was expected and from what was discussed as certain last week with no better foundation than the distinguished post Locart now holds and appearances in his favour that the Protector would reward him for arranging the treaty with the supreme command of this remarkable force. The men have already received a month's pay down with the promise of three in advance when they land, that will be at Boulogne in France, whence they will march to the appointed places. There is good reason to believe that these troops will serve for some considerable enterprise, which is expected to fall upon Dunkirk. The squadron of powerful ships which is equipped and ready to sail for the coast of Flanders, makes this almost certain, England being now obliged to help France to take that place by the terms recently agreed. The troops have been promised prompt pay and there is no doubt that this will be kept up as if they do not keep the men in a good humour they might go over to King Charles, who is certain to do all in his power to entice them away from the service of the Most Christian, once they have crossed the sea, and engage them in his own, thus rendering his army formidable and strong enough to promise him success in any of the designs he may propose to carry out.
The government here is much depressed and disappointed at the news of the safe arrival of the silver fleet from the West Indies at the Canary Islands. Yet they still cherish hopes of getting some part of the silver. It is stated here that this is not absolutely in safety although it has got into port and is so near home. They say openly and would like it accepted as true that Blake will make an effort and will either try to burn them in port or will risk some other determined action.
It seems very likely now that Medoes will not be sent to Denmark after all, as the designs of that king against Sweden seem to have cooled.
After many efforts to see the secretary of state about the reply to your Excellencies' requests, which has been put off so long, I at last succeeded in speaking with him the day before yesterday; but I could get nothing but fair words and promises that my instances would be attended to so soon as the affairs now monopolising their attention are terminated. I made a strong remonstrance on this occasion and used the most forcible arguments that suggested themselves to me.
London, the 11th May, 1657.
[Italian.]
May 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
42. To the Resident in England.
Commendation of his activities. Note that the reply of the government to the Senate's request is delayed. He is to press for this with suavity and tact, always expressing confidence with anyone with whom he happens to speak, that no prejudice will be received from the ships of the nation which go to the Turkish ports, even if the latter should demand their services. He will deal similarly with the Dutch ambassador upon the same question. The final decision about the coronation of the Protector as king becomes increasingly interesting, he having so far refused this supreme position. The Senate will await news on the subject with curiosity.
Ayes, 144. Noes, 1. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
May 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
43. Francesco Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, Senato, to the Doge and Senate.
The assembly of the clergy has at last dissolved and the prelates have gone back to their dioceses to begin the collection of the 80,000 livres offered to the queen of England, and of the 2,700,000 granted to the king of France.
Compiègne, the 15th May, 1657.
[Italian.]
May 18.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives
44. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
In a few moments they are expecting the end of the important business that has occupied parliament for months and has excited great attention throughout the world owing to the consequences involved. Parliament recently took back to his Highness the settlement of the articles he had handed to the deputies. As this was entirely satisfactory in every respect they look for a response from him that will be categorical and not lead to further discussion and delay through which so many affairs of no less consequence have been held up at this Court only waiting for this one to be settled. Cromwell promised not to keep them waiting long for a reply and appointed to-day for parliament to go and receive it at Whitehall, assuring them that it shall be entirely satisfactory to the members; so it may be assumed that he will not this time refuse the elevation to which his ambition directs him, although he has so often professed his reluctance. If he wished his objections to be taken as sincere he should not have asked for the repeal of the article of the long parliament, for the increase of the money voted for his establishment and for so many other things. Now that everything is decided in his favour he cannot draw back again and will have to settle the matter, unless his subtle genius, which is full of tricks and inventions for evading anything, devises some fresh difficulty to delay his receiving the crown, which he will have to take in the end because of the satisfaction parliament will give him to satisfy his greed.
Further conspiracies have been discovered in more than one part of the kingdom, planned by the Millenarists and the Fifth Monarchy men, which were found out at the very moment when they were holding their meetings precisely as happened in this city. They have put matters right by the arrest and imprisonment of these pestiferous folk and are beginning the examinations which will bring to light other machinations of these sectaries or of others who seek to raise trouble and cause dissension among the people calculated to produce disorder at the present crisis which is so favourable to their intent. Every plot planned against Cromwell is discovered and every mine against the present government is traced and exploded miraculously, so he might without scruple settle the business of the coronation, unless he wishes to delay it for some reasons known to him alone and impenetrable to everyone else, even to those who stand at his side, until some more favourable opportunity occurs.
The six regiments of infantry for France were reviewed a week ago in the presence of M. de Bordeos, the ambassador, under the command of Sir John Rinaldi, six miles from London. (fn. 3) Three of the regiments set out at once on their march to the place of embarcation, and the others will follow in a few days. This arrangement was made for convenience of quarters and to avoid any danger from the mass being too strong or too numerous. Nevertheless all these precautions were in vain as the soldiers deserted, up to forty in some companies, and nothing availed to maintain their discipline, not even a sermon which was delivered by one of their preachers on the very day of the rendezvous, or the pay down and the promise of more when they landed on the other side. Desertions also take place daily from the new recruits enlisted to fill the places of the 6000 for France. Quarters were assigned to them in the neighbourhood of this metropolis, but not being accustomed to carry the musket, they threw them down and ran away. Some have been sent back, and to punish the most guilty and as an example to the others, five have recently been hanged. In this way they hope to stop further desertions and prevent worse disorders.
A prize has recently been brought in, taken from the Spaniards. (fn. 4) It consists of a very large ship with a precious cargo, in addition to which they found a quantity of gold. This has since been unloaded and taken to the Mint. Some prisoners have been brought to this city, among them 8 or 10 friars, Franciscans, Carmelites and Dominicans, who were taking passage on that ship from the Indies to Spain. These were taken through the most frequented streets from one end of the city to the other, on market day, to a house appointed for their prison. To make them more conspicuous, they were obliged to walk two and two, clothed in their habits, and much contumely was poured on them by the way. They are now shut up, depending for their food on the charity of the Catholics here, and hoping soon to be exchanged for English prisoners in the hands of the Spaniards at Dunkirk and Ostend.
A Turk has come from Algiers, sent by the Divan to his Highness, of whom he had audience the day before yesterday. He presented letters from the Viceroy and a present of skins of no great value. He comes only on mercantile affairs and to confirm the good relations and trade between this country and that mart. Although I am assured by one in a position to know that the only motive of this mission is to confirm and increase trade and that his commissions certainly do not extend to anything else I will keep my eyes open and will not lose sight of any of his proceedings.
They are expecting Don Francesco di Melo from Portugal, who is coming as ambassador. He should have sailed from Lisbon on the 1st of this month so he should reach England before long. It is supposed that he comes on important business, which time will disclose.
London, the 18th May, 1657.
Postscript:—As I was sealing this despatch my informant has told me of the Protector's reply to parliament which he has delayed until this moment. It is completely different from what everyone expected. In his usual style Cromwell thanks parliament and intimates that he is ready to accept everything except the title of king. He feels that he cannot in conscience take this and asks the Assembly to think of some other title, so that he may fulfil their desire. The chief motive for such a reply is a petition presented unexpectedly this morning by the military asking parliament not to confer the title of king on Cromwell. Although they did not accept it the Protector considering that by taking everything he might open the gates to some sudden disorder, decided that it was better to adopt this middle way which will still make it easy for him to achieve the whole, in order to give an apparent satisfaction to the military and to stimulate more pressure. It will be curious to see what parliament will now do. I will keep on the watch and will get further information of what has happened to-day for my next despatch. The Protector would be greatly surprised if parliament should decide to dissolve at once and if they should all return to their homes, as may very well happen.
[Italian.]
May 19.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
45. To the Resident in England.
Commendation of his labours, especially his letters of the last week. It is a matter for note and astonishment that all the plots contrived against that government, although frequent, are found out.
Ayes, 133. Noes, 3. Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
May 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Archives.
46. Francesco Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Cromwell's ambassador has gone to Calais to be present at the muster of the English troops who are to be landed there. With the arrival of this very considerable reinforcement, added to the French troops, they will certainly serve to push forward the decisions about war.
Cromwell never ceases to keep alive his claim to extend his protection to secure the advantage and security of the Protestants of Piedmont. Accordingly the English minister has performed an office with the ambassador of Savoy on their behalf, pointing out the ill treatment which they receive from the Catholics and asking the duke to maintain the privileges and promises which were recently granted to them. The Savoyard told him in reply that the goodness of his master had the interests of his own subjects sufficiently at heart, and for this he needed no incitement of any kind, but he condemned their temerity and insolence in turning aside from the respect which they owed to their natural prince in contriving fresh pretensions suggested to them by malice and disobedience.
In Flanders as here all is in motion. The enemy is beginning to make himself felt, strengthening his forces on the frontier. King Charles was hoping, with the arrival of the English troops in France, to increase his troops by breaking away and desertion from that side, but as there are no Irish among them it is uncertain how far he will profit in the plans he has made.
Compiègne, the 22nd May, 1657.
[Italian.]
May 25.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci.
inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
47. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Besides the representations contained in the petition presented by the military to parliament against Cromwell assuming the title of king, there were threatening and disrespectful expressions, protesting that if the Protector agreed to this title he would, in a few hours, be abandoned by the army. They abhorred the dignity and would not have it restored; all their support of his Highness in the past would be turned against him if he gave them this cause for dissatisfaction. Accordingly the Protector having failed to win over the army to consent to his desires, though he never thought that they would have withstood him so boldly, preferred to modify his ambition and give a definite refusal of the royal title. He persists in this, from necessity, being dragged by the hair, one may say, unless he chooses to run manifest risk of being overthrown, involving the total destruction of the present government, which could not subsist if abandoned by the military from whom it derives all its strength.
Parliament has turned the matter over again at more than one meeting and considered the Protector's reply, but has not yet come to any decision, putting it off from one day to another. Some of the members, who are not entirely friendly to Cromwell and who know that the whole thing originated with him, getting a third party to propose it in the assembly, contend that they ought to abide by their decision and make him accept the title by force, not allowing the will of one man to prevail over the wishes of parliament, which means all the commons and people of the three kingdoms. Others, who are his friends and who do not wish to expose him to such manifest peril, say that they ought not to force him to what he confesses he cannot conscientiously accept, and it is reasonable they should think of some other title which would be more to his taste and also acceptable to the military, so necessary to the preservation of this state.
So far they have not decided what other title to give him. It will be difficult in any case since the fundamental laws of England declare that the sovereign must be a king, so if they wish to appoint some one with another character the laws will have to be altered. It is more likely that parliament will insist on his assuming the title of king or will let the matter drop altogether since there must be no change in the fundamental laws. Some are of opinion that they will grant him all that has been decided i.e. money, succession etc. and that nothing more will be said about the title, leaving it to him to assume it when he finds it convenient, as parliament does not want to make the offer again unless they are quite sure that he will accept.
If they stick to their opinion and will not change Cromwell will prefer to dissolve parliament and send them all home, leaving a lot of important affairs unsettled, rather than bring about the ruin of himself and all his family for a vapour of honour and ambition. If the matter is allowed to sink into oblivion the Protector will use the interval in trying to win the assent of the army by blandishment and caresses and then, at the opening of a new parliament, obtain what his courage has failed him to grasp at present. This would allow parliament to put the finishing touches to the numerous important questions which it has in hand to settle.
The last letters from France bring word of the safe arrival there of the 3000 men sent, adding that they have been well received and treated. This is expected to be followed by news of the arrival of the other 3000 who subsequently embarked at Dover to join the first. Great things are expected of these men and it is claimed that they will facilitate great conquests, to which they are pledged here by the recent treaty with France. But it is easier to talk of things than to do them and they may not be so successful as they fancy, seeing that the Spaniards are forewarned and have had time to put the threatened towns in a state of defence, so that they will be sufficiently garrisoned to withstand the strongest assaults of the French and English.
It being reported that the Dutch propose to go and rescue the Spanish fleet from the West Indies, said to be at the Canaries, and that Vice Admiral Ruiter has left the Mediterranean and passed the Strait for this purpose, there is good reason for predicting trouble between the States and this government. Blake will certainly resist this, and he will claim in any case to search the Dutch ships; if they will not consent he will use force, so some portion of that money might still fall into the hands of the English, upon which they fully rely here.
A Maltese ship with a Dutch prize has been driven into an English port by a storm or some other accident. When the States heard of this they immediately sent two powerful war ships to that port to prevent the Maltese from sailing with its prize. They are off the port now, keeping the two ships bottled up and using very threatening language to the English for giving the Maltese shelter. Here they attach no importance to the bravado of the Dutch, as they do not think them strong enough to take so much on hand, counting on their present business with France, which makes daily progress, that it will impress them sufficiently and prevent them from breaking the peace and bringing an irresistible torrent upon them.
I have not learned any more about the Turk from Algiers, and I feel sure that his commissions did not extend beyond what I reported. Besides the present of skins they are expecting a ship with some live animals to present to his Highness. As this has been unduly delayed the envoy is afraid that it has been taken by the Spaniards and in that case he would lose many things that he has on board. He has come alone. He bears the title of Aga. He speaks French (franco) but with extraordinary difficulty and can scarcely make himself understood. He is defrayed by the Protector who has told off three base fellows of his household to attend him. At present he keeps his bed, suffering from a chronic malady in his leg, and is tended by a surgeon of his Highness.
Salvietti, the Florentine Resident, has recently presented the Protector in the name of the Grand Duke with a dozen butts of different wines, expressly sent from Tuscany, with a quantity of other fancy food stuffs, oils and essences which his Highness has made and distilled. (fn. 5) Cromwell is gratified although the wine has much deteriorated on the voyage. But the Protector has no great taste for anything and he is not disposed to regard favourably presents of this character. One of his physicians has stated that he has not the courage to put such liquors to his lips. He is possibly afraid that they will be bitter, being fearful of his own shadow, so to speak, and living in constant apprehension of everything, for he trusts no one (havendo paura delta propria ombra si puo dire, et stando continuamente in aprehension et in timore di qualsisia cosa, di niuno generalmente fidandosi).
London, the 25th May, 1657.
[Italian.]
May 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
48. Francesco Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Impelled by curiosity to see the landing of the English his Majesty went with the Cardinal from Compiègne to Amiens, where he stayed one day to put his army in order and then proceeded to the coast, to stay there until Cromwell's troops are all landed.
Colonel Locart remains where he was, as he has instructions from the Protector to be at hand until the soldiers have been fully mustered. It is understood that they are most excellent troops, each man being clothed (coperto) in uniform, and distinguished by a red jacket. What these forces are intended for is not yet disclosed. Many think it will be the siege of some maritime town, by an understanding with the Protector, in accordance with the terms of the recent alliance. But I learn on good authority that the Cardinal has complained to Locart that the secrecy agreed upon between them and arranged has not been observed on their side as the Spaniards have got a copy of the treaty itself.
Compiègne, the 29th May, 1657.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 The Emperor Ferdinand III who died on 2 April.
2 Reynold's commission is dated 25 April o.s. Thurloe: State Papers, Vol. vi, pp. 230–1.
3 The review took place on 1–11 May at Blackheath. Mercurius Politicus April 30-May 2.
4 The Virgin Mary of Calais, 18 guns, taken by the Yarmouth, Capt. Robert Mackey. She was sailing from Cartagena in the West Indies to St, Sebastian. Mercurius Politicus April 16–21. Casl. S.P. Dom., 1656–7, pp. 343, 350. Thurloe: State Papers, Vol. vi., page 220. Salvetti estimates the cargo as worth 200,000 crowns and says that there were thirty religions among the prisoners. Brit. Mus. Add MSS., 27962P f. 200d. According to the Council proceedings they numbered 14 and were confined with other Spanish prisoners at Chelsea College. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1656–7, pp. 367, 553.
5 Salvetti reports the arrival of the ship on 27 April, and the presentations in the following week. Brit. Mus. Add. MSS. 27962P, ff. 192, 199.


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