Venice
October 1659

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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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71-85

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'Venice: October 1659', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 32: 1659-1661 (1931), pp. 71-85. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=90049 Date accessed: 29 July 2014.


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October 1659

Oct. 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
70. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Their usual irresolution persists here upon everyone of the subjects under consideration which have been awaiting a decision so long. The question of the government bothers them more than any other, but as it is impossible to know when it will have an end it is even more so to discover what direction the present dishevelled and shapeless form will take. Their differences over its nature persist but none is found easy to put into practice and so any opposition joined to the natural deliberation of this people suffices to postpone a conclusion and leaves everyone the more curious to see what it will be.
Lambert reached London at last on Tuesday after dinner. The whole of the army that went with him, consisting of not more than 4 to 5000 effectives horse and foot, is divided out among the counties most under suspicion, where they have established quarters and disposed garrisons. Now with the arrival of this individual, who has a seat in the council of state, we may see some change in the control. If the general opinion does not err, and I have heard it from the lips of some who can speak on good authority, this should consist of the form already adopted by the late Oliver when he made himself Protector. Lambert has long desired the title and this may perhaps be the opportunity for realising his ambition. Time alone can show.
Every indication goes to show that the present state of affairs will not continue. The officers have resumed their meetings, and it is observed that they followed the same procedure before the undoing of the old parliament. This points to a change especially now at the relief of guards one no longer hears “Hurrah for parliament,” as was customary, but “God save the army,” showing clearly the feeling of the soldiers and confirming the general opinion that we shall soon see other changes.
As the city of London objects to confirming the decision of parliament touching the continuation of the present mayor for another year, the common council of the city proceeded yesterday to Westminster to point out to the assembly the prejudice to the ancient privileges of London if this innovation takes place and to signify the determination of the aldermen and others of that body to nominate a new one at the appointed time. Parliament being aware of the nature of their demands, after keeping them waiting more than two hours, under the pretence of some important business, made the excuse that it could not hear them, and so they had to go. As London has good cause to take offence at this incident everyone is watching to see what they will do, which may easily increase the suspicion which the government has of the city, besides its other fears of Charles receiving assistance and other advantages from the reconciled crowns to the prejudice of this domination.
Parliament is not over pleased at the return of the fleet from the Sound without having received orders from here. Montagu justifies it on the ground of being short of provisions, but it seems to have been due also to the lack of a good understanding between him and the other English commissioners, his colleagues. Accordingly the council has been directed to take under consideration the instructions given to the fleet when it sailed and further to enquire into the true reasons for its return without orders, reporting to parliament with their opinion as to the proper course to take in each of these cases.
They have decided to send 15 ships in that direction, regardless of the severity of the weather, to hold the balance in the affairs of the two Northern kings, in case the Dutch should break their word viz. to keep on without making any change in those parts to the prejudice of Sweden. But they put off action in the matter and the resolution is expected to remain absolutely void, especially as the council of state has been directed to consider whether to continue or to recall the plenipotentiaries of this republic from the Sound. It seems that the Swede is not entirely pleased with them as they have addressed him with audacity and insolence in informing him of the arrangement made at the Hague between the mediators about the affairs of the North to compel him to an agreement with Denmark. The hopes of this seem to be fading. The Danish minister here said as much to me the day before yesterday, assuring me that his master would willingly stand to what had been agreed in Holland, but Sweden objects and will by no means consent.
Admiral Stochs has arrived in the Downs from the Mediterranean with his squadron of 8 ships. In place of these they have despatched other four in that direction, which will shortly be followed by four more, (fn. 1) as they do not wish to leave that sea without such assistance, to secure the trade of this mart, which is much harassed by pirates in those waters. They are hastening this despatch at the instance of the traders, to whom this support is very important during the rupture with Spain.
Twelve years ago the English earl of Arundel was found mad in the city of Padua, and there detained for the sake of his recovery. Now some malignant fellow has been telling parliament that he is kept out of England by his Catholic brother here solely because he is a Protestant, and that the former may enjoy his goods. Parliament has therefore made an order that he shall be sent for at once and brought here, charging the council of state to see how this can be done with the most despatch and at the earl's own cost. It seems therefore that they think of sending some one to Padua to bring him here. It will be very difficult as he is in a shocking state. I gather that these messengers will be sent straight to the earl's house and so I suppose nothing will be said to your Serenity, but it will all pass between individuals, as the sole object of parliament is to take this way to confiscate the property of that most noble and wealthy family, as they cannot do it in any other, since they cannot find that he had a hand in any of the late conspiracies.
I can report nothing about my audience as nothing has been settled and nothing said in parliament, as they only devote their attention to things which they think more important, leaving all private affairs especially those of the foreign ministers. Not one of these is at present doing anything at this Court, and Portugal cannot even get audience although he importunes to have it, representing that he has business of consequence.
London, the 3rd October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives,
71. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
In my last I wrote that the army officers had resumed their meetings, and I have now to add that these are held every day though one cannot find out what the outcome will be. Parliament being aware of these gatherings sent some of its members thither to learn then plans and the motives for such conventicles. These brought back word that they were merely considering certain requests to lay before the assembly. These were brought soon after and consist in their demand that all the supreme posts vacant in the army shall be filled, to wit, generalissimo, sergeant major general, general of the horse and others. After two days deliberation parliament voted and declared that there were more general officers in the army than the establishment allowed, and that tins was useless, costly and dangerous for the republic, and so the proposals of the army were summarily rejected. When the officers heard of this decision they continued their meetings. Parliament announces that these are merely for discussing something to present in writing with their complete submission to this decision and to express their desire to support its authority without making the least alteration to the prejudice of the republic. But it is impossible to discover whether this is the real aim or whether there are other objects, as seems likely. A few days should show.
The chief object of the army was to raise Lambert to the post of generalissimo and then by degrees to that enjoyed by Oliver, and in the same way, but parliament, remembering the proceedings of Cromwell, pretends that no one but itself shall enjoy this supreme authority over the army and so deal a blow at the root of these ambitions, aware that no one but Lambert can realise them. Flitud the lieutenant general is not popular or esteemed by the troops. It was proposed to send Lambert to the Tower, but so far nothing has been decided, the question being most delicate and a scurvy reward for the services he has recently rendered to the republic. From all these things it may be imagined what amount of permanence and durability there is in the present government.
Parliament having refused access to the aldermen and others of the common council of London, as reported, they decided to go again to Westminster last Saturday. Admitted to the assembly they represented the prejudice to the privileges of the city done by the decision to continue the mayor for a year and their claim to keep those privileges inviolable. After considering the matter parliament decided on Wednesday that the city should be left free to choose its mayor in accordance with its privileges, always provided that the choice of this and of all other officers should fall on suitable and qualified persons. Yesterday, being Michaelmas by this style, is the usual date for the nomination of this person and the choice fell on Alderman Allen who is entirely devoted to parliament and utterly opposed to monarchy.
Many examinations of the persons imprisoned for complicity in the late conspiracy have been read in parliament and they perceive that if the plan had been carried out it would have involved the utter destruction of parliament. Accordingly Thursday was appointed as a day of fasting and humiliation to God for their preservation, to be observed by parliament and the cities of London and Westminster.
Nothing more is heard of the affairs of the Sound. As a result of the instruction to the council of state about the English plenipotentiaries remaining or returning the decision has been left to the discretion of the persons on the spot, with power to come home if they think it necessary.
The council of state having considered how they might fetch the mad earl of Arundel from Padua to England and discussed many methods, it was finally resolved by parliament on Wednesday evening (fn. 2) that all the earl's estates should be secured in the hands of persons nominated by the council of state until his return to England. It was further resolved to write a letter to your Serenity to the end that the earl might be secured in the territory of the most serene republic until parliament sent to fetch him, and Mr. Thomas Challenor, M.P., was instructed to prepare the letter and the Speaker to sign it. When this will be despatched and what means will be taken to make it reach the Senate is not yet known, as so far nothing has been said to me, and possibly they will not tell me anything as there is no order at this Court and they are utterly regardless of formalities.
I beg to acknowledge the ducal missives of the 6th September, but those of the 30th August have not reached me.
London, the 10th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
72. Gio. Battista Nani, Venetian Ambassador extraordinary France, to the Doge and Senate.
England is not included in the peace, except so far as France is trying f or an adjustment between her and Spain. The Ambassador Locart, at the pressing requests of Mazarini has been admitted by Don Luis to the negotiations. The king of England crossed this kingdom with all diligence, with only four attendants, (fn. 3) and proceeded by the posts to the Pyrenees. His object is to break the dealings with parliament, but the Spaniards have persuaded him to take this journey precisely in order to alarm the parliamentarians and induce them to cede Dunkirk and Jamaica. At this price it is most certain that the Spaniards would adhere to the republic and make an adjustment with them. Up to the present Locart resists these efforts but it is proposed as a sop that Spain shall permit the English to trade beyond the line, especially towards that part of America not frequented or inhabited by them.
Paris, the 14th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 14.
Collegio,
Lettere,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
73. Parlamentum Reipub. Angliae Ser. Duci Illust. Senatu Veneto, salutem:
Ser. Dux, Illus. Senatus, quum officii nostri esse existimemus quoscunque nostros tam apud exteros quam nobiscum agentes, publica cura complecti et quoniam nobis innotuit Thomam Howard, ex nob. hujus reipub. familia, comitem Arundelliae, plures jam annos, sub mentis alienatae obtentu, a quibusdam necessariis suis Patavii detineri, statiumus igitur ad vos mittere qui eum in Patriam deducant ad quam rem neque auctoritatem neque auxilium vestrum nobis defuturam esse confidimus.
Ne autem interea temporis a curatoribus suis in alterius alicujus principis aut status ditionem transferri possit, cum quo vel inimicitiae vel nullae foederum necessitudines nobis intercedunt. Ser. Vestiam majorem in modum rogamus ne eum omnino ex suis finibus amoveri patiatur, sed ita providere velit ut sub vestro praesidio et protectione conservetur donec quod brevi fiet ad vos pervenerint quos ad securiorem ejus reditum missuri sumus.
Quod uti pro singulari justitiae et benevolentiae erga nos vestrae testimonio habebimus, ita quacunque pari vel etiam majori occasione data mutuum nostrum studium atque affectum Ser. vestrae approbare gaudebimus. Quam de caetero divinae benignitate ex intimis animi sensibus commendamus.
Westmonasterio, 4a Octobris anno 1659.
[Signed:] Gulielm. Lenthall parliamenti reipub. Angliae prolocutor.
Oct. 17.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
74. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The army officers' meetings continued until Wednesday, during which they discussed and matured a paper containing representations and demands which was presented to the assembly that same day by Major General Desbero, signed by many of the officers. Its contents deal with several points, on some of which they express complete submission to the recent decision about the higher officers. In others they make urgent demands for the immediate consideration of the needs of the army, and for finding some prompt expedient for providing the pay, which is in arrear, and for its regular continuation at the proper times. That the discipline of the army shall remain untouched and particularly that no officer or soldier can be cashiered or dismissed from his post without a council of war or with his own consent, except in case of disbanding or reorganisation; with many others besides of which the two preceding are the most important and ticklish. When these demands were read in parliament with many other particulars contained in the sheet, they decided to take until to-morrow for consideration, and so the officers are waiting for an answer and decision. There are undoubtedly difficulties in the way, especially in the demand that no one shall be cashiered except by a council of war, a power which parliament means to keep for itself alone. In a few days we ought to see what will happen, for there is no doubt that under the ashes lie hidden embers waiting an opportunity to blaze out and light a considerable fire not easily extinguished.
Monday next is the day fixed by parliament for the report of the committee to consider the best way of putting right this great disorganised machine of government. Everyone is waiting to see what will be decided, though it is supposed that such a question will take a long time. Many would like to see the government settled speedily but others do not want it too soon because of their personal interests.
Yesterday was set apart to return thanks to God for the preservation of the nation in the late troubles. As the city of London had invited parliament to a banquet on Saturday last, yesterday, after the ceremony at church they met in a great hall in the city with the mayor and aldermen and common council. There were also present at the banquet the members of the council of state who are not members of parliament, with the general officers and leaders of the army. They were all entertained with great splendour but with the confusion that is usual when so many are gathered together.
The Ambassador Bordeos had audience of the council of state on Tuesday morning. He spoke of the friendly relations between his king and this government and told them how King Charles had proceeded from Flanders to Normandy and there embarked for Spain. (fn. 4) He said that all the ports of France were free and they could not prevent him embarking, but he thought it right to tell them. He did so very tardily allowing Charles time to land in Spain where he is said to have arrived safely. Bordeos behaved in this manner because he feared, if he gave them the news earlier, they would send ships after the king to take him prisoner, as might easily have happened.
The Dutch ambassador Niuport holds frequent conferences with some commissioners of the council upon naval matters, and particularly to prevent individual Englishmen from taking commissions from Sweden and Portugal, through which the mart of Amsterdam and other places subject to the States suffer much injury.
The Portuguese ambassador presses for audience of the council but so far has not obtained it. In spite of this he cherishes hopes of obtaining assistance from this state by sea and land against the Catholic. I have this confirmed on good authority and further that they wish here to mediate an adjustment between Holland and Portugal and support Braganza energetically against Spain, more especially as it seems that his Catholic Majesty will not listen to negotiations for an accommodation with England. It is said that Locart has met with a very cold reception at the conference of the Pyrenees, not only from the Spanish favourite but from the French one as well. As several ordinaries have failed to bring letters from him it is supposed that he is on his way back to England to give an oral account of what he may have been unwilling to trust to letters.
Admiral Stoches having arrived from the Mediterranean with his squadron, as reported, complaints have come from Leghorn against him personally which cannot fail to injure him greatly unless they are false. English merchants living at that town charge him that on his way home he fell in with a squadron of Genoese galleys coming from Spain. He boarded them but on their bare statement that they were subject to the republic of Genoa he let them go without further enquiry. Besides large sums of money belonging to private Spanish persons for the mart of Genoa, they contained considerable amounts belonging to the Catholic destined for the state of Milan. He might easily have ascertained this, but with gross carelessness he allowed the squadron to continue its voyage, without any of the formalities usual even with friends.
The ducal missives of the 13th September have reached me this week via France together with those of the 30th August which were missing. As regards the credentials, I still have them by me, nothing having been decided upon my just claims. I gather that a resolution will shortly be issued that foreign ministers who do not bear the title of ambassador shall have their first audience in full parliament, but shall neither be seated nor covered. I report this in advance so that the Senate may provide me with suitable instructions. Before the council of state residents sit and cover and since this is a republic the same ought to apply to parliament at least for those of crowned heads. I shall therefore wait for instructions, especially as I am the only one of the royal residents who is to have audience and so I must act with great caution to avoid creating a bad precedent.
London, the 17th October, 1659.
Postscript:—Since the resolution reported concerning the earl of Arundel the letter for your Serenity has been drawn up and they decided to get me to send it to Venice. It has just been brought to me with a copy of the contents, asking me to forward it promptly. I therefore enclose it and I assured the bearer, who was the master of the ceremonies, of my desire to fall in with the wishes of parliament in everything.
[Italian.]
Oct. 18.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
75. Francesco Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The king of England is generally reported to be in Fontarabia, as the best way of serving his interests by supporting Spain. The internal peace of England and the complete failure of the king's plans make it very unlikely that France will interfere to restore that monarch, apart from the reasons already given.
Toulouse, the 18th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 24.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
76. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The consideration of the articles presented by the army was postponed from Saturday to Monday, as reported. That morning the first was taken in hand and passed as the military desired. The second was discussed after dinner, to wit that if any one should lay information against the army before parliament, with scandalous imputations, they should be summoned for examination and handed over for condign punishment. After some debate they decided exactly the opposite of what the army desired, namely that it is the duty of everyone and of members of parliament in particular, to inform it of anything they consider may affect the public security, and it is the unquestionable right of parliament to receive and discuss such information and decide what may be best. On Tuesday they voted on three other questions which were carried in the sense of the petitioners, leaving the discussion of the sixth until Wednesday morning, that being the article about dismissal, the most important and difficult of all.
When parliament assembled on Wednesday at the usual hour some of the members produced a circular letter signed by the nine officers who formed the council general to prepare the paper presented last week, which was directed to all the regiments quartered about the kingdom, enclosing a printed copy of the paper presented to parliament with the reply and the decisions taken thereupon so far. So instead of beginning the debate on the sixth article, as voted the previous evening, they had this letter read. Finding some expressions not altogether pleasing to parliament they at once decided to deprive of their commissions Lambert and Desbero, Colonels Berry, Barrou, Kelsey, Ashfield, Cobbet and Packer and Major Crid, the nine who signed the letter, depriving them of all military employment and directing the captain of the horse guards of parliament to secure the person of Lambert and take him to the Tower. They further decided that for the future the army shall be governed by commissioners, to be seven in number. Accordingly they at once passed an act annulling the one already promulgated appointing Flitud lieutenant general and commander in chief of the forces assembled by the authority of the parliament in England and Scotland, and substituting in his place the seven commissioners, naming Flitud, Ludlow, Monch of Scotland, Sir [Arthur] Hesilrig, and Colonels Morley and Overton who are to have the same power and authority as belonged to the office of lieutenant general, leaving it to these same commissioners to dispose of the regiments which belonged to Lambert and the others who were dismissed.
Lambert having found out about the resolutions passed in parliament, immediately gathered together the dismissed officers and spoke to these and his other partisans of the reward which parliament proposed to give them for their good services to the republic at all times, and particularly at its re-establishment and over the rebellion in Cheshire. Accordingly they decided to appeal to arms. Each one went directly to his own regiment, telling them of the behaviour of parliament, when all cried with one voice that they would live and die with Lambert. Thus in a moment all the streets were filled with soldiers. Parliament also brought to Westminster the troops on its side, to secure the palace and see that their meeting was not interrupted on the following day. They sent to the common council of London to ask them to send to Westminster some companies of the special militia of the city, and for the city to stand to arms; but a reply was sent back that they saw no need for this. They next caused a beat up of the new militia constituted for the Cheshire affair and then dismissed until further order, but Lambert's soldiers broke the drums and prevented them from assembling. Yesterday parliament found it impossible to meet, all the approaches to the house being occupied by Lambert's partisans who turned back the Speaker himself and all the members who wanted to enter. Six of them who remained later in the house on Wednesday evening were kept there all night and the whole of yesterday as prisoners, without being able to get out. They could not even get food and drink as all that was brought to them was devoured by the soldiers and they were only allowed a little bread and cheese.
With untiring watchfulness Lambert spent Wednesday night and all day yesterday hurrying about the city encouraging his men who acclaimed him as chief and generalissimo with shouts and firing of muskets. After taking possession of the mint and all the public treasury, where strong guards were set, he succeeded in drawing over to his side the parliament's own guards, dismissing the captain in command, (fn. 5) who was to have arrested him and substituting Major Crid whom parliament had cashiered.
Realising the need for himself and his supporters of a little breathing space after so much energy and toilsome labour, feeling sure of the loyalty of the bulk of the army, and considering the parliament party weak and waning, as the soldiers keep coming over to his side, being unwilling also to see blood shed, Lambert met some of his supporters yesterday evening at Whitehall when they issued an order for withdrawing all the troops to their quarters, sending the like, in the name of the council of state, to the parliament militia, who supposed it to be genuine and at once withdrew to their quarters. Thus in a moment tranquillity has been restored, at least in appearance, but actually no reconciliation has been effected and one waits with curiosity to see what will happen, and they are at present discussing what is to be done.
Meanwhile parliament is not sitting, the doors being guarded by some of Lambert's companies to prevent the entry of anyone soever, so one may say it is practically dissolved. It seems probable that this time Lambert will surmount all obstacles and arrive at last at the goal he has so long desired. No one would venture to foretell what will happen, so subject as they are to change here; their variations and instability have continued without interruption for so many years that to foreign countries such constant motion must appear incredible and excite laughter at such a long comedy which must infallibly be turned one day into a tragedy.
On Tuesday parliament passed an act, which was published immediately, annulling all the ordinances, acts and operations performed by a single person, i.e. the Protector and his council or by any assembly pretending to have parliamentary authority from the 19th April 1653, o.s., the date of the interruption of the assembly, to the 7th May 1659, o.s., when it was set up again, unless confirmed by the present parliament, now practically dissolved. They further declare that after the 11th October, last Tuesday, by their style, no custom, excise or any sort of imposition may be levied upon the people of this republic without their own consent in parliament or as it might lawfully have been done before the 3rd November 1640 the day when the present parliament began, declaring that any one who transgresses this order is guilty of high treason and should be punished accordingly.
The reason for the promulgation of this decree is not known for it will only cause confusion, as the merchants will claim that they need not pay more for the entry of their goods than they did before 1640, which was insignificant. But possibly parliament foresaw the differences which were to arise between the army and itself and passed this resolution to compel the military not to dissolve it, as without parliament money cannot be raised, and to submit if they wish to have the means of subsistence. It is impossible to say anything definite until we see what decisions are taken, but it seems probable that parliament will be definitely dissolved with some declaration annulling the decree of Tuesday.
The Resident of Tuscany having received letters of credence for parliament from the Grand Duke, his master, and caused a copy to be read in the assembly, according to custom, had audience of a committee on Tuesday, whereby he recognised the existence of the republic which on the following day ceased to exist.
London, the 24th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 24.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
77. Alvise Molin, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, to the Doge and Senate.
The States have received a letter from their ambassador in England advising them that the commissioner of the Council of State had told him that parliament did not consider it necessary to send back their fleet to the Sound for the moment, because the season was too advanced and they believed that of the States would suffice to bring the king of Sweden to reason. This report has by no means pleased their High Mightinesses, as it shows that the mind of England is not directed to the common good but inclined to favour the king of Sweden. Accordingly they have decided, in imparting their resolutions to England, not to commit themselves further than in giving simple notice.
It is reported from Copenhagen that the ministers of France and England, with the assistance of Holland continue to urge the king to pursue the peace negotiations with Sweden.
Pressburg, the 24th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 25.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Rettori.
Venetian
Archives
78. To the Rectors of Padua.
Our Resident in England writes that the congress there, with sinister designs, has decided to send messengers to fetch away to London the earl of Arundel, who has been living in Padua for 12 years, seriously indisposed. We think they will find it difficult to manage this, but in any case we send you the information, so that in such manner as you consider best without committing the state, you may let the earl know of this, so that if he consents to go, well and good, but in the event of violence, though we do not expect it, you may take the necessary measures.
Ayes, 88. Noes, 4. Neutral, 4.
[Italian.]
Oct. 26.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
79. Alvise Molin, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, to the Doge and Senate.
Letters from Goi, his Majesty's resident at Copenhagen, (fn. 6) of the 30th August report that the French, English and Dutch commissioners are urging the kings of Sweden and Denmark to conclude peace, but the French commissioner is holding back, not wishing to force the king against his will. The Dutch and English are trying to induce the king of Denmark to release the Swedish Ambassador Bielche, offering to obtain the release of the Danish Admiral Ghede, and that this should be done by common consent. The commissioners submitted the terms of peace to the king of Sweden. He replied very angrily that these proposals should be made with the fleet and laying his hand on his sword said that that would not allow itself to be presuaded to any alliance by any one, no matter whom. The English lords would always be his friends, if they confined themselves to the limits of friendship, but the Dutch he considered his enemies. They all withdrew amazed at the manner of this irate reception, and they all went away equally disgusted and dissatisfied.
It is reported that Montagu has left for England, so the affairs of those parts may easily undergo some considerable change.
Pressburg, the 26th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 28.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
80. Gio. Battista Nani, Venetian Ambassador extraordinary in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The king of England, arrived at Fontarabia, was received with great honour and every attention by Don Luis, and then proceeded to San Sebastian whence he may possibly go on to Madrid. The Spaniards make use of him to frighten the English, but their treaty with parliament is understood all the same to be very advanced.
Paris, the 28th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Padova.
Venetian
Archives.
81. Bernardo Donato, Podesta, and Anzolo Marcello, Captain of Padua, to the Doge and Senate.
In obedience to your Serenity's instructions of the 25th we have done our best to inform the earl of Arundel of the decision of the congress in London, without committing the state. The official charged with this duty found the earl, now living at Cha Corner al Santo, having dwelt here for the last 12 years, unapproachable. He is kept shut up in a room as an incurable maniac. All the doctors here have tried the most exquisite cures in vain; so he is in the charge of four English gentlemen and a lady of mature age, appointed by his mother to take care of him, and attended by five servants. By order of the relatives they allow all the English and anyone else who has the curiosity, to see the earl. He learned from the gentleman at the head of this household that he had already heard from England of the parliament's decision, who showed him a report printed in English containing an article of this decision. He said that if it was by order of parliament they would have to leave and would obey, but that in fact the earl was in no condition to travel at all and any effort was bound to fail, of which there is no doubt whatever.
Padua, the 29th October, 1659.
[Italian.]
Oct. 31.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
82. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate. Last week I reported the interruption of parliament and I have now nothing to add but its complete dissolution, as it has never met again and there can be no hope that it will do so. Its behaviour was too severe, injurious and haughty, condemned by everyone and generally disgusting all by the measures taken against the nine officers of the army, who were so deserving and brave, being its leading and most experienced men.
The council of state has sat since in Whitehall, but only those members who support the army. The others, assuming that they would not be admitted did not go near the apartment. The army officers held another conference in a separate chamber at Whitehall, the whole week being spent by these two councils, now united and then apart, in discussing and deciding how to set up the government in a more durable and permanent form.
So far everything remains unsettled and everyone is eagerly waiting for the appearance of some declaration, which will not be until they have decided what government they will substitute. They talk of a senate of 70 but nothing can be definitely asserted though there is no doubt whatever title they adopt it will be the sword that governs and directs everything. Yet everyone must marvel with these turmoils and changes taking place almost daily one may say, and never a drop of blood is shed. This could hardly happen in any other part of the world and is solely due to the great phlegm of this people, for the rest it cannot be denied that they are as brave and valorous as any in the world.
To communicate the sentiments of the army of England to those of Scotland and Ireland and inform them of the reasons which have given rise to the present changes, Colonels Cobbet and Barrow have been sent with all despatch, one to each, by the council general of the army which has once more decorated Flitud with the title of supreme commander of the forces of this state; Lambert getting that of Major General and Desbero commissioner general of the cavalry. A committee has been appointed of some of the leading officers to fill up the vacant commissions in the army with competent persons, presenting them to the council general for approval. That body has ordered a careful revision of the articles of war and the preparation of new ones for the better direction and discipline of the army.
There were in the army certain regiments which supported the parliamentary party and which on Thursday in last week appeared very active against the other side. These have since become reconciled and all are united. In spite of this the council of officers has thought it expedient to suspend for the moment all who had command in these regiments, leaving it to a council of war to decide whether they shall be kept on or dismissed from their posts. Meanwhile everything proceeds with incredible peace and quiet, though there is great curiosity to see the outcome of an affair of such consequence.
In this interval of government the wits have resumed their freedom in writing and are sending to the press a quantity of sheets against the fallen parliament and everyone else. A proclamation of King Charles has also appeared promising great advantages and privileges to the people if they will restore his Majesty to the throne. An anonymous letter has also come out addressed to Lambert, as the supposed author and leader of affairs exhorting him with offers of very considerable advantages to himself and his family to be reconciled with the king and to suggest to others the restoration of his Majesty. The royal partisans seize the opportunity of this interregnum to make such overtures, but there is no sign that anything will help their cause except the assistance of foreign forces. This is much dreaded here either in the winter or next spring, since it is known that Charles is in Spain to do his utmost to obtain active assistance and support.
There is nothing to say of foreign affairs as no curiosity is felt just now about any but the internal affairs of this country. When any order has been established the foreign ministers will be informed so that they may know with whom to treat, and then everyone will need fresh letters of credence. Those sent me for parliament were never presented, and I am exceedingly glad that I did not submit to the indignity they tried to pass upon the republic, which some tried to represent as more decorous and honourable.
With the disappearance of parliament there vanish the lightenings that threatened the house of the earl of Arundel. Under the circumstances the Senate may well suspend its reply to the letter I forwarded last week, as well as any action against the earl at Padua such as parliament requested. Your Excellencies may thus benefit this distinguished family which has always professed unequalled devotion and respect for the most serene republic of which it has given ample testimony to all the ambassadors and other ministers of your Serenity, which I also experience daily from their kindness and courtesy.
London, the 31st October, 1659.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Capt. Jonas Poole was sent with the Leopard, Jersey and Elizabeth, for convoy duty. His instructions are dated 7 Oct., o.s. Apparently the Preston was also added to this squadron at some time. The Worcester and Advice were sent out for a like duty in the following year. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1659–60, pp. 243, 304, 405.
2 28 Sept., o.s. Journals of the House of Commons Vol. vii., page 788.
3 He was accompanied by the earls of Ormonde and Bristol and Dan O'Neile, with 3 or 4 servants. Clarendon: History of the Rebellion, Vol. iii., pt. ii., page 680.
4 He had intended to go by sea, but actually proceeded overland by Lyon to Languedoc. Clarendon: Hist. of the Rebellion Vol. iii., pt, ii., pp. 680–1. Clarendon: State Papers, Vol. iii., page 594.
5 Major Arthur Evelyn. See Firth: Memoirs of Edmund Ludlow Vol. ii., page 139.
6 Baron Johan van Goess.