Venice
January 1661

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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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234-243

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'Venice: January 1661', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 32: 1659-1661 (1931), pp. 234-243. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=90064 Date accessed: 24 September 2014.


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January 1661

1661.
Jan. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Genova.
Venetian
Archives.
258. Paris Tasca, Venetian Consul at Genoa, to the Doge and Senate.
From an English ship arrived from Lisbon in fourteen days with a cargo of 800 cases of sugar it is learned that some 4000 soldiers of fortune have arrived there under the command of the Count of Sciombergh, being welcomed by the people and made much of by the Court … that Don Francesco had been sent back again to the British king, according to report upon negotiations for a marriage of the princess of Portugal with that sovereign, with a great dowry.
Genoa, the first of the year, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 3.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
259. Giovanni Battista Ballarino, Venetian Secretary at the Porte, to the Doge and Senate.
Imprisonment of the French ambassador in the Torri because of a claim for 40 reals.
The merchants of Smyrna have collected
32, and his release is expected; but the Vizier will not declare himself and it is feared that he may raise fresh difficulties. The English ambassador, in the generosity of his heart, forgetful of past differences, sent Draperis his dragoman to make strong representations to the Grand Vizier for the liberation of his Excellency of France. He received a general reply and a corresponding curtness from the ambassador, for he did not even thank him. This apparent benevolence of England derives from his wish to leave as few enemies here as possible, since he has to leave for London, and he is very uneasy about the favour of his king whom he disobeyed openly when the affair of Henry Ider was dealt with twelve years ago, (fn. 1) recommended to him by the parliament, so he lives in great apprehension of receiving some punishment when he has arrived in his native land.
Pera of Constantinople, the 3rd January, 1660. [M.V.]
[Italian; deciphered.]
Jan. 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
260. Alvise Grimani, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
A rumour circulated publicly in this city that the cardinal had offered many millions to the king of England for the dowry of his niece and that if this marriage was not concluded that between Monsieur and the princess would not be made either. When it reached the Cardinal's ears he tried to find out the authors, and finding that it originated with the gazetteers he had them all sent to prison and the papers confiscated.
Paris, the 4th January, 1660. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Jan. 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
261. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The dissolution of parliament was postponed from Saturday to Monday, but the assembly has not yet separated. The king went to sign the bills passed but could only give his assent to two, as during the preceding night the princess of Orange grew worse and while he was in parliament news reached him that her Highness was dying. He put off signing the others until to-morrow, no earlier date being possible because of the Christmas celebrations by this style. Proceeding quickly to Whitehall he found his sister unconscious and a few hours later she expired, to the intense grief of the whole Court and especially of the king, who loved her most tenderly. It was not the small pox, as they feared, but a malignant fever of the worst kind which has carried her off in 5 days while yet young. On this account the Court has resumed strict mourning, which was already partly laid aside for the death of the duke of Gloucester. The foreign ministers have followed suit and I have incurred an additional expense of 23l. sterling. Owing to the festival and the king's withdrawal no one has yet been able to offer condolences, as I will do when it is permitted.
The queen feels the loss severely, after all the misfortunes experienced for so many years and the recent death of her son Gloucester. Unable to find consolation in her stay here she has decided to leave for France, overcoming the severity of the weather and caring nothing that the roads have been rendered impassable by the quantity of rain that has fallen these last days. Her start is fixed for next Wednesday evening, and she is counting the moments and only longing for the time to set out. She declares roundly that if she stays in England she will soon end her days; so neither the king nor anyone else tries to detain her.
The two acts ratified by the king are for continuing the excise on all liquors drunk in this country except wine, half of which is granted to his Majesty and his heirs for ever; the other half is granted to him for life only in exchange for other revenues, in which the crown has the advantage.
They keep finding out more about the late conspiracy. The visitation of houses and arrests still take place, not without result, as they have found arms, powder and a quantity of weapons, the utmost vigilance being shown to guard the king and all the royal family.
The envoys of Mainz and Savoy left recently and they are shortly expecting the ambassador extraordinary of Florence (fn. 2) who is travelling via France, M. dell' Estrade is also expected soon. He is staying at Paris to obtain an increase of his salary, as they have heard of the splendour shown here by the baron di Batteville, more like a prince than an ambassador, and he represents to Cardinal Mazarini the necessity of not being surpassed by the Spaniard; so he has obtained an addition of 6000 francos to the 18,000 originally assigned, which will not suffice for the present style of living in England and allow him to compete with Batteville, who will spend more than 20,000 crowns a year if he continues as he has begun.
I recently met the Danish ambassador, who has great credit in that country and on his return home shortly will enjoy the first posts at that Court where, now the crown is hereditary, everything is at the king's sole disposition. He professes great esteem for the republic, mindful of the many favours he says he received at Venice in the past. In speaking of Candia he hinted to me that he did not despair of his king granting some assistance to your Excellencies. If recently at the disbanding which took place in that country your Serenity had had some one to prefer a request, something might certainly have been done. In the future your Excellencies must not be afraid to ask; there is no harm in trying. An envoy would not cost the state much. He would do his best to get any request granted. If the Senate should decide on such a mission, the envoy might also try in Sweden and perform two services in one journey. I commended his zeal and assured him of your Serenity's great esteem for his Majesty, thanking him cordially.
London, the 7th January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
262. To the Resident in England.
Acknowledge his letters. With regard to the creation of a council for trade the Senate wishes him to watch closely what is done and to report full particulars.
Ayes, 125. Noes, 1. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Jan. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
263. Alvise Molin, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, to the Doge and Senate.
I believe that they will get Colonel Collalto to go to England. As he is to proceed towards the Netherlands to meet Brandenburg, who has gone in that direction, he will be able to perform the duty in less time and more promptly. If this mission should take place I have the means and confidence with him to put on a good footing all that can be desired for the service of your Serenity.
Vienna, the 8th January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
264. Giacomo Quirini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
They have resumed confidential relations and demonstrations of honour with the English ambassador, and it is believed that eight horses, of the forty which came from Naples, have been sent to his house by order of the king. From this it may be gathered that he will shortly be taking leave of the Court and returning to London.
News comes from Malaga that the English ambassador on his way to Constantinople put in at Lisbon. This is resented here.
Madrid, the 12th January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
265. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
After numerous prorogations, granted by his Majesty, parliament was at last dissolved on Saturday, the king going on purpose in the usual way. Entering the House of Lords he sent for the Commons. The Speaker delivered a learned speech, presenting the bills for ratification, numbering 32, some to restore goods and titles to the dispossessed, some to naturalise foreigners, some for collecting taxes in arrear, some for the internal affairs of the country. These passed, the king replied to the Speaker in a few effective words, thanking the Commons for their work during the session and assuring them of his regard, leaving to the chancellor to add what remained to be said. That minister delivered an eloquent speech calculated to gain the good will of his hearers. He took occasion to inform parliament of what had been found out about the conspiracy, telling them of the king's confidence that they would be on the watch to thwart the malcontents. Their plan was to surprise the Tower of London and Windsor castle, secure the general and enter Whitehall to destroy the royal family, thus throwing England into confusion; but their plans being found out it will be easy to prevent the mischief, and remove all cause for fear.
The queen left for France the day before yesterday with her daughter to go and marry the Most Christian's brother. The king went with her to the coast and saw her on board the fleet which takes her to Havre, and he cannot be back in the city for 10 or 12 days. The duke of York did not go with his mother because of a fluxion of the eyes which keeps him in London to continue the treatment he has begun.
The queen felt deeply the duke's marriage with the chancellor's daughter and refused to see the new duchess. She has an inveterate dislike of the chancellor and his family, in spite of the king's support of his sister in law and that there is no help for it now it is all done. Accordingly Cardinal Mazarini interposed either spontaneously or at the chancellor's request, and sent a gentleman on purpose from Paris to London with despatches for the queen on the subject. (fn. 3) Since then it was noticed that her Majesty was much more favourably disposed towards the duchess, and their reconciliation took place on Tuesday evening, when the duchess entered the circle publicly, kissed the queen's hand and sat in her presence, taking her place as a royal princess. Now her Majesty has gone the duchess will come to the palace and move about there in peace.
With the Court away and parliament dissolved there is nothing of consequence to add. On Monday I saw the queen and king to offer condolences, and to wish the queen a pleasant journey. I took occasion to speak to the king about the English consul Gionas, according to the instructions of the 17th December, as well as of the nomination of Sig. Pietro Mocenigo to be ambassador in ordinary at this Court. The king replied graciously especially about the appointment and spoke about responding to this embassy. Without talking of other matters I took leave and departed, making way for other ministers who were waiting for audience.
London, the 14th January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
266. Giovanni Battista Ballarino, Venetian Secretary at the Porte, to the Doge and Senate.
The new English ambassador is at Smyrna. His predecessor here is preparing to depart. He expressed a special desire to see me. I had to explain that I was confined to my quarters. This quite satisfied him and he assured me that he would take to the king of Great Britain a most full and cordial account of the excellent relations between us and of the goodwill shown by me.
Pera of Constantinople, the 15th January, 1660. [M.V.]
[Italian; deciphered.]
Jan. 15.
Senato.
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
267. To the Resident in England.
The Capitano General da Mar, in letters of the 4th December, reports that he has referred the matter of Galileo to the captains of the English ships, to do what they can, and that he will render them every assistance, as he has been unable to treat through intermediaries. He is to inform the king and old Galileo of what is being done.
Now that parliament has dissolved he must try to prefer a request for assistance, about which the king has previously expressed his intentions, at a suitable opportunity and with the necessary tact.
Ayes, 118. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Jan. 19.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
268. Giacomo Quirini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
In England they are incessantly urging the Ambassador Batteville so that from the good intentions of King Charles he may manifest some in favour of the Catholic crown. They have sent him copies of the two treaties signed by his Majesty in Flanders, the one with the Archduke Leopold and the other with Don John of Austria, in which he pledged his royal word that on his recovery of the throne he would restore the places usurped from Spain by parliament and Cromwell.
The duke of Jorch has resigned the generalship of the sea which was conferred on him by the Spaniards in past years. It would seem that they intend to let it fall to Prince Rupert, and in this way put him under an obligation and introduce him to service and respect towards the Catholic king.
Madrid, the 19th January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
269. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
In previous despatches I have spoken of the conspiracy recently discovered, and now in the absence of other news I will give a detailed account of what has since been contrived by these unquiet spirits who cannot live at rest. Last Sunday was Epiphany according to their reckoning here. It is usually spent in exceptional merriment with banquets and drinking. The rebels expected to find the people buried in slumber in the dead of the night and resolved to rise and surprise the guards, whom they expected to be drunk after the day's rejoicings, enter the houses and slaughter all who did not share their opinions. Accordingly they assembled in different places and after listening to sermons and exhortations from their devilish leaders, who persuaded them of the duty to fight for King Jesus, whom they expect to reign on earth, and to destroy all worldly monarchies, they distributed themselves secretly at different posts suited to their purpose and waited for the agreed signal to set to work, had not the Divine Providence interfered to thwart them. One of the confederates, at the very moment when the mine was to be fired, stung it seems by his conscience, went to the mayor of London and revealed all, (fn. 4) telling him of the places where the rebels were gathered. The mayor forthwith mounted his horse and with a few guards gave the alarm to all the city, advancing to scatter the sectaries and sending word of this to the palace, so that in a moment all the streets were in arms. The duke of York, General Monch and many other persons of rank went against the rebels who, when found, showed great courage and absolutely refused to surrender. A conflict ensued and after some discharge of muskets, seeing the inequality of force, they decided to flee, and so dispersed in confusion leaving many dead and a great number of prisoners. Some perished on the other side also.
After the skirmish great efforts were made to track the fugitives, but they only caught a few, the others, favoured by the darkness, left the city and took refuge in woods a short distance out, and although hunted all the following day they have not been found. From the number of prisoners taken, amounting to several hundred, and from the dead it was believed they must be too reduced to make further attempts, but this was a great mistake because on Tuesday to Wednesday night they caused a fresh alarm creating more terror than the other, because it was stated that they had set fire to different parts of London, which afterwards proved false. On this occasion York, Monch and others proved their courage, as they easily dispersed the traitors of whom many perished by the sword and several were arrested, so that all the city prisons are overflowing. Since this more strict visitation has been made and continues in all the houses of reputed sectaries, arms being taken away and everything else likely to encourage the animosity they feel against the present government, which is now considering measures to prevent further similar disorders. Every one blesses the mercy of God for this miraculous escape as if these rascals had had their way the scene would have been terrible and no one would have escaped unhurt from their sacreligious hands.
The king, who had gone to Portsmouth with the queen, was immediately informed and the need for his speedy return to London represented to him. They also sent more troops in addition to those with him, to preserve him from any snares laid by the fanatics, who abound in the country, in the places he passed through. But escorted by the militia of the counties he traversed the king reached London safely yesterday at noon, and forthwith issued a proclamation, published to-day, forbidding the sectaries to hold assemblies or conventicles of any kind. They are now busy discussing and planning with the privy council the utter destruction of these rebels who may cause alarm from time to time, but will never achieve their aims as their opponents are too powerful. But as they believe themselves to be fighting for Christ they care for nothing and risk their lives without a thought.
London, the 21st January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
270. Alvise Molin, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, to the Doge and Senate.
Here they have replied to the letters of the king of England and have sent to Collalto so that when he has finished with Saxony and Brandenburg he may proceed to that king to congratulate him on his restoration to that kingdom and to urge him to help in the war with the Turks. I am writing to Collalto this evening to congratulate him on his new appointment and I will show him the wide field he has, if he thinks fit, to gather from that king, who is so powerful at sea, great advantages for your Serenity, and I hope to do good service thereby. I propose also to make a request here that Collalto may be instructed to devote himself in England to the service of your Serenity, and I hope to succeed in this.
Vienna, the 22nd January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
271. To the Resident in England.
Acknowledge his letters. Approval of his action about the Angelo. There is nothing to add except to await the result, in the hope that the king will understand the public reasons for restraining his subjects from evil behaviour.
With regard to the complaint of the English ships that they are obliged, so they say, to take troops and supplies to the islands he may say that the republic has not used any form of violence, indeed they are exempt from all obligation, but as they happened to be going to the islands of Zante and Cephalonia to lade currants some of them voluntarily offered to take some troops and a certain quantity of biscuit, and since they had to make the voyage they suffered no inconvenience.
Our ambassador in Germany writes that the king has written to the emperor of his restoration to the crown, and this has moved that Court to send an envoy (fn. 5) to congratulate his Majesty, taking the opportunity to ask him to help against the Turk and renewing friendly relations.
Ayes, 79. Noes, 0. Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
Jan. 26.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
272. Giacomo Quirini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The various suggestions and numerous rumours which are constantly circulating about the marriage of the king of England have obliged the Spaniards to make known with a certain frank confidence that the Catholic would like to see this marriage concluded with the widowed empress. (fn. 6) King Charles told the Ambassador Batteville in reply that while the partie was one of the first in Christendom, he regretted that his interests did not lead him in that direction, hinting gently that the empress was poor in money but rich in years. He told him further that to form a complete bond of union with the House of Austria he offered his sister as wife to the emperor and that he would take the Infanta of Spain in exchange; a thing that can never happen for very many reasons.
But the thing that gives the Spaniards most concern is that the marriage of the duke of York with the Lord Chancellor's daughter is countenanced and overlooked by the king. They are afraid that under this approval he is progressing with the negotiations with the niece of Cardinal Mazarini, against which they are employing every means to divert it and although they announce that their offices are directed against the sister of Braganza, it is feared, none the less, that the great offers of money and the fresh disturbances and riots in the city of London may in the end prevail and influence his Majesty. Under these circumstances they have adopted the policy of accepting English help for the war with Portugal and refusing that of the Dutch, hoping thereby to strengthen the friendship with England, while the States are already committed to war with Portugal.
Madrid, the 26th January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 28.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
273. To the Resident in England.
Commendation of his office with the ambassador of Denmark. To inform him of the letters written by the republic asking for help and to request him to support this application, doing his best to conciliate that minister's good will. Permission to enter in his accounts his expenses for mourning for the Princess of Orange.
Ayes, 124. Noes, 3. Neutral, 15. It requires 4/5ths.
On the same day in the Collegio:
Ayes, 19. Noes, 2. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Jan. 28.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
274. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Returned from Portsmouth, where he left his mother and sister about to sail for France, the king immediately applied himself to measures against the sectaries, of whom the country is over full. He has since, by close examination tried to find out the secret designs of the rebels and has succeeded in learning enough to show him how to prevent future disorders, both in the capital and in the provinces though there these unquiet spirits made some insurrection though it was easily quelled by the imprisonment of the leaders and their accomplices. Of the numbers arrested these past days some of the least guilty have obtained their liberty by giving pledges to attempt nothing against the government and to be loyal to the king. Other suspected accomplices have been arrested and 25 or 30 of the most guilty, actually taken with arms in the rising last week, have been committed, and yesterday the judges began to try them. It is believed that they will soon end their days on the gallows as guilty of treason, which will serve as an example to prevent other outbreaks.
The queen sailed from Portsmouth with a favourable wind, but in the night they were overtaken by a very dense fog and the ship ran aground on a sand bank, (fn. 7) not without danger of shipwreck. When the tide rose they floated off and returned to port, where they remain, the wind being contrary and the princess having fallen ill of the measles, which for some days endangered her life. The sad news served to increase the king's distress caused by the dissensions in London, but he is now relieved as the messengers who come every day bring word that his sister is much better and quite out of danger, so that when the wind turns she will be able to cross to Havre where the duke of Anjou is eagerly awaiting her.
Lord Jermin, earl of St. Albans, an old favourite of the queen, is going with her to Paris. He takes letters of credence as ambassador extraordinary to the Most Christian, with full powers, so they say, for the marriage. But there are still some who think that if it is not broken off it will at least be delayed, owing to the obstacles thrown in the way by Cardinal Mazarini, if he cannot marry his niece to the king. This is supposed to have fallen through and I must tell the Senate what I have recently heard on the subject on good authority.
I sent word of the parties suggested for his Majesty and the efforts of the Ambassador Batteville for the widowed empress, who got her to come to Flanders with the idea that the king should cross the sea secretly to see her. But his Majesty declared positively that he would marry no one who was not beautiful and Batteville, knowing that Nature had not been generous with this gift to the empress, let the first plan drop and made a new proposal, to wit a princess of Parma, who seems to have the support of the Catholic, in dowry and other things that might be lacking. The idea did not displease the king, especially as he questioned one Guasconi, a Florentine, who once fought for this crown and reached London from Italy a few days ago, and learns that she is perfectly beautiful. So his Majesty at once sent for her portrait declaring that if the negotiations with Portugal do not hinder, he will marry this one if she answers to the descriptions. He seems very anxious to marry a Catholic princess and to do it soon, as is very necessary, in view of the marriage of the duke of York and the son already born to him.
To know the issue of the negotiations with Portugal one must wait for the return of the ambassador of Braganza, now said to be coming back to London with larger offers especially for the marriage. Meanwhile the Spanish ambassador never ceases to depreciate that Infanta and argues that Braganza will never be able to fulfil his promises, as he has no cash, though the world believes he has abundance, and if England enters into close relations with Portugal she will incur the hostility of Spain, which will lead to a thousand inconveniences. No one would venture to predict the issue. Time will show. I will keep the Senate informed.
London, the 28th January, 1661.
[Italian.]
Jan. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
275. Giovanni Capello, Venetian Bailo at Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
The successor of the English ambassador here has arrived with a decent equippage and suitably accompanied, and so the proper offices of correspondence have been passed.
Pera of Constantinople, the 29th January, 1660. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Jan. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
276. Alvise Molin, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, to the Doge and Senate.
Reports an interview with Count Portia. He spoke about Collalto's mission to England. He told me that for his Majesty they have already given Collalto instructions to compliment the king on his restoration and to establish the best correspondence, offering him assistance on every occasion. As regards your Serenity he felt certain that his Majesty will have given the orders which I desired, and he considered it very desirable because the maritime forces of that kingdom were the very thing for the needs of your Serenity. I have sent full particulars to the resident in England.
Vienna, the 29th January, 1661.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Henry Hyde, who had been English consul in the Morea, appeared at Constantinople in May, 1650, saying that he had commissions from Charles. By arrangement with the Turks Bendish had him seized, put on board ship and sent to England, where he was beheaded soon after his arrival. See Vol. xxviii. of this Calendar, pp. 146, 155, 159, 167.
2 Francis George von Schonborn for Mainz and the Marquis Palavicini for Savoy. The ambassador expected from Florence was the Marquis Giorgio Vincenzio Salviati. Levant Co. Court Book. S.P. For. Archives Vol. 152, f. 9.
3 M. Arnolfini who arrived in London on 7 January; There is a long letter from Bartet to Mazarin on this mission, of 12 Jan., 1061. P.R.O. Paris Transcripts.
4 Sir Richard Brown, the Lord Mayor was warned by Lt. Col. Cox. Kingdom's Intelligencer Jan. 7–17.
5 Count Collalto.
6 Eleanor, daughter of Charles II, duke of Mantua, third wife of the Emperor Ferdinand III, who died 2 April, 1657. She was born in 1630 and therefore of the same age as Charles.
7 The London, ran upon the Horse sand. Pepys: Diary Vol. i, page 323.