Venice
April 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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271-285

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'Venice: April 1661', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 32: 1659-1661 (1931), pp. 271-285. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=90067 Date accessed: 20 August 2014.


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April 1661

April 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
313. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The Court at present produces no news of moment, all the most interesting business remains practically asleep though arousing general desire, especially in those interested in the result, which can never be predicted in a country so inconstant as this. The Spanish ambassador having exerted himself to the utmost not only over the marriage but over his other business at Court to separate England from Portugal, now keeps silence, leaving time to work, declaring that he has nothing more to say except to make them certain here of a rupture with his master if they mean to support the interests of the duke of Braganza more closely. The Portuguese minister also, tired of all these negotiations and offers without any conclusion, is not so pressing as before, but he states that while of late he considered the marriage of his Majesty with the Infanta, his master's sister, as a practical certainty, now they seem to have cooled off and no longer to favour it, so all is uncertain.
Meanwhile the chancellor, whose interest it serves to have these affairs drawn out, as already stated, temporizes and serves his turn by trifling and inventions, lulling the king and everyone to sleep and leaving everything undecided. As he cannot fail to profit notably by keeping the king wifeless as long as possible he has brought forward a new proposal of marriage to confuse those already under discussion, render a decision more difficult and cause that none shall have effect. This last concerns Mademoiselle d'Orleans, (fn. 1) which is said to be warmly taken up, chiefly in France, and in any case it will be furthered and supported by the Spaniards to whom it matters little whether the king marries this one or that provided she is not the Portuguese. It seems likely that the chancellor will incline more to this last than to the others, because Mademoiselle is well advanced in years and there is good reason for supposing that she will have no offspring, and that is what he would desire, in the interest of his daughter, the duchess of York, which serves to confirm the opinion that he may easily agree to it. Time will throw more light on all these negotiations.
The destination of the squadron of ships being fitted out remains hidden; but there are strong indications that it will spread its sails towards the East Indies. The chief basis for this belief is that they are having the ships sheathed with plates, as is usual with those going to the Indies to preserve them from the worms which riddle ships in those waters, which are not found in the Mediterranean, for which voyage all that expense and labour would be unnecessary.
The meeting of a new parliament being decided for next May, the usual writs were issued recently and some elections have already taken place and in two or three places near the metropolis the choice has fallen on worthy men fully disposed to give the king satisfaction, whereas in London on Monday the Common Council and those who have votes chose four who disagree with his Majesty about religion, one being a Presbyterian and another of other sects, (fn. 2) so it is considered the worst choice that could have happened in the interests of the Court, clearly showing that evil humours still remain and unquiet spirits, who study every way to introduce fresh confusion into the affairs of this country. If this should happen the king's personal interests would fare badly, for while all the Presbyterians and other sectaries would be against him from their inveterate hatred for the monarchy and particularly for the unfortunate House of Stuart, he could not promise himself much even from those of his own party, because having lost all their substance during the late conflagration and having passed so many years in exile and misery now that the king's return should have brought them recompense and recognition of their loyalty, instead of advancement they find themselves left in the background and forgotten, only those being preferred who showed themselves most hostile and cruel in the late revolutions, so they are offended and grumble and undoubtedly little good could be hoped from them in other crises, which God forfend.
The Religion of Malta holding many benefices in Holland of which the States there have indirectly and unjustly taken possession, and desiring their recovery the Cardinal of Hesse Grand Prior of that Order in Germany has sought and obtained the mediation of divers Powers with the Lords of Holland to that end. To obtain that of the king of England he has sent a gentleman here express who has presented his letters to his Majesty and the ministers. (fn. 3) He hopes that the support of so many princes may facilitate for his Religion that which justly and beyond dispute pertains to it. In case, with all these means he is unable to recover his own he asks his Majesty's permission that the ships which that Religion sends into these waters against the Dutch with letters of reprisal, may have a retreat in the ports of England.
The Marquis Salviati, ambassador extraordinary of Florence, having arrived in London made his public entry on Monday with great pomp and numerous and rich liveries. He had his first audiences yesterday. Now he will attend to visiting ministers and other individuals, after which, as he has only come for compliment, he will take leave and go straight to Italy being very anxious to be in Florence at the time of the nuptials of the prince there. (fn. 4)
The despatches of England will have reached your Serenity after some weeks three days before the ordinary, and this because of an ordinary that is established at Antwerp for Venice that leaves every Monday and takes the letters from here if they arrive in time. This will continue for the future whenever the sea does not lengthen the passage for the couriers. It will be much more convenient and speedy because previously the letters from here lost four whole days at Antwerp, waiting for the ordinary of Friday. But as the carriage of letters is increased by one fifth by this novelty, which is of no great consequence, especially for packets which go by weight, like those of your Serenity, I report it to have the good pleasure of your Excellencies, as I cannot agree to this new expense, insensible as it is, without definite orders from the Senate.
London, the 1st April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
314. Giacomo Quirini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
Further confirmation has come of the report that the king of England has admitted Melo to his presence as a simple gentleman and not in the capacity of a minister and that upon the new proposals for a marriage with Braganza that monarch replied in a reserved manner and with slight acceptance. Their lordships here have made a supreme effort, and having overcome all the difficulties they sent to London, the day before yesterday, letters of exchange for 100,000 crowns at sight, these having been granted by Pichinotti, to be repaid on the arrival of the galleons from the Spanish Main. Thus when this money comes into the hands of the Ambassador Batteville he has the most explicit orders to employ it all in the satisfaction of the ministers and councillors of state there, endeavouring at the same time to draw them away as much as possible from the secret correspondence with Portugal and to approach the more to the reasonable advantages of this crown, restoring those places which were unjustly torn away and usurped by Oliver Cromwell.
With this opening they have conducted very intimate negotiations with the Resident of England, already rendered obedient to Spanish gold and entirely disposed to employ his offices in favour of this side. Out of the king's bounty they have increased his pensions and given him a generous advance towards the cost of his voyage while Don Luis consigned to him a grand present of scents and other dainties to present to the king of England, his master. The resident left the Court the day before yesterday highly content and satisfied.
Madrid, the 4th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 5.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
315. Alvise Grimani, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The nuptials and wedding ceremony of Monsieur to the Princess of England have been solemnized, but privately. (fn. 5) The king, the queens, the princess of the blood and some other grandees of the Court took part in the functions and Monsieur presented his bride with a quantity of most beautiful jewels. For two days mourning was laid aside, but resumed afterwards and they continue to wear it.
Paris, the 5th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
316. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Affairs at this Court move so tardily that nothing certain can be said yet about the most important things that have been so long in agitation which everyone discusses according to his private bias. Nothing has been heard at Court of the earl of Bristol, since he left Brussels for Italy on the 5th March. Everyone is eager to hear about his negotiations at Parma. It is believed that in obedience to his original commissions he will have made the overtures to the duke there for which he started, as there has been no time for him to have learned the changes at Court on the subject of the marriage.
For the armament, on which work is not relaxed so that the ships may be ready to put to sea as soon as possible, they have decided to add a number of inferior ships, but strong and well armed for war, to make twenty in all, the better to effectuate what they purpose, which still remains impenetrable, though it is believed to be for the East Indies.
Moved by this powerful equipage and to prevent mischief that might ensue the Dutch also have decided to arm a greater number of ships than those already advised, to keep a good squadron not far from these shores to be on the spot and watch the intentions of England, of which they are the more apprehensive because their ambassadors here cannot make any progress with their negotiations which are merely designed to establish between the two countries a permanent friendship and correspondence and for maritime affairs, and because the Council of Trade here studies to deprive them of the herring fishery on these coasts, enjoyed by them for many years, to the great advantage of their country. For this reason the ministers of Holland and all the others resident at the Court complain of the delays they encounter, no matter how simple or easy of digestion the business may be. But the lords here are so accustomed to this phlegm that they cannot and will not hasten a decision, leaving all those who have business with them to languish in ambiguity and uncertainty.
After the election in the city of London of the members for the future parliament, because they are turbulent spirits, not favourable to the king's interests, and because on such occasions the metropolis sets an example to the other towns and villages of the realm, to prevent the news getting out at once, the posts which leave every week for the interior were stopped by the king's order, on the supposition that the elections in the country would take place in the mean time. (fn. 6) The letters being searched it was found that some reported this sinister choice with remarks very favourable to the sectaries, encouraging many places to choose similar fanatics. So having made a thorough enquiry they have this week had divers of those found most criminal arrested and sent to the Tower, including a Presbyterian minister who had not only preached publicly in a London church with improper sentiments, (fn. 7) but had printed and published a book full of seditious ideas and accursed opinions to disturb the quiet of the people and rekindle a new fire in the heart of the kingdom, which cannot yet be said to have reached a state of permanent and durable tranquillity.
The city of London objected strongly to the suspension of the posts, and the Common Council having met recently great disputes took place over the matter, some wishing to make complaint to the king, and others thinking differently, but nothing of importance has been decided.
The Prince of Parma has recently arrived in London from France. (fn. 8) He remains incognito and has not come for any business, but only for amusement and recreation. It seems that he will stay until after his Majesty's coronation which should be in a few weeks.
The sickness of Count Collalto, the emperor's envoy to England, was so violent that in a few days he expired at Brussels, to the unspeakable grief of all who knew him and myself in particular, because I shall lose the emperor's powerful support in my requests for help at this Court. I keep the matter alive but achieve nothing, other affairs, internal and external, occupying all the attention of the king and ministers, preventing them from attending to a question which concerns the whole Christian world.
In obedience to the ducali of the 12th March I have made the communication as directed to the Resident of Denmark about the privilege desired by Ruffler.
London, the 8th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Genova.
Venetian
Archives.
317. Paris Tasca, Venetian Consul at Genoa, to the Doge and Senate.
The senator Giovanni Carlo Brignoli has been chosen by the government here as ambassador extraordinary to England, to compliment that monarch and to try and obtain some advantage for trade. They arrived at this choice after having received word from their minister resident over there that the ambassador will be treated in the manner that they desire here.
Genoa, the 9th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
318. Alvise Grimani, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Letters have arrived from Flanders which relate that outside Dunkirk the English are advancing the works to make fortifications sufficient to provide quarters for an army of 10,000 men. This occasions no small jealousy to the Spaniards, the more so because there is a great deal of talk of a union between King Charles and the Princess of Portugal. Two couriers have come from London, from Batteville, pressing for money in order to upset the supposed negotiations, since then Count Fuendalsagna has sent remittances of 5000 and of 30,000 crowns.
Paris, the 12th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 13.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
319. Giacomo Quirini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
Since remitting the money to England the Council of State here has decided, and makes no difficulty about publishing as much, that Spain must draw close to England with all the forms of friendship, as they do not wish on any account to lose the confidence of that king since it is upon his inclination that the security of the whole of the north depends, where it is not only these considerations that make for opposition to the Braganza marriage but very likely all the rest as well. They will also make up their minds to contribute a portion of the dowry if the king should incline to a marriage in Germany or in Italy with a princess friendly to the House of Austria.
Madrid, the 13th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 13.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Milano.
Venetian
Archives.
320. Thadio Vico, Venetian Secretary at Milan, to the Doge and Senate.
I have just heard of the arrival here of the earl of Bristol, the English ambassador sent by his king to certain princes of the empire. He has orders to proceed to Parma to see the princess there, who has been suggested by the Spaniards as a wife for the selfsame king of England. The ambassador is lodged at the Court. The duke, the governor, wished to go and meet him outside the gates, but was not in time.
Milan, the 13th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
321. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Secretary in England, to the Doge and Senate.
There is such a scarcity of news that I must ask pardon for the brevity of these lines. Of the Portugal marriage many wish to have it believed that it is so far advanced as to be practically on the point of conclusion. But those who consider dispassionately the present state of England are of opinion that they will not plunge into a fierce war with the monarchy of Spain on the faith of the airy insubstantial offers made on behalf of the duke of Braganza by supporting his feeble pretensions. This consideration alone should suffice to restrain this crown from such a disadvantageous step in the present crisis, but it is much to be feared that Portuguese gold blinds the ministers, who are famished, and lures them on in their own private interests without weighing those of the public. The Spanish ambassador Batteville also promises considerable sums to those with whom he only negotiates by means of cash, but as he does not pay so promptly as Portugal, this causes much apprehension to the partisans of the Catholic king. But as his excellency has lately received by express from Madrid notes of exchange for 200,000 crowns, payable on the mart of Antwerp, this will serve to diminish somewhat the hopes of Portugal. It seems likely that this Court will not come to any conclusion in the matter before some encounter has taken place between the Castilians and Portuguese, when they will support the party who is most favoured by fortune.
As everything drags on to extreme length at this Court, to the general inconvenience, the preparation of the squadron of ships is subject to the same inconvenience, in spite of the decision to send it to sea with all speed. The lack of money is a hindrance, delaying the provisioning required for the voyage, the destination being still undisclosed, unless it be the East Indies.
Throughout the country they are choosing the members for the future parliament. In spite of the bad choice of London, which it was feared would serve as an example, the choice is seen to fall for the most part on worthy and honourable men, so it is hoped that all will proceed favourably and turn out to his Majesty's complete satisfaction.
The ambassador extraordinary of Florence, having performed his duties, has taken leave of the king and Court and left London on his way back to Florence through France, being anxious to be present at the wedding celebrations.
Sig. Lorenzo Thiepolo son of Sig. Marin and Count Giovanni Vidman have recently arrived in London from Paris, on their travels, to gain experience to serve their country. I am fortunate in being able to serve them.
London, the 15th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 16.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
322. Giovanni Capello, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
The English ambassador left the port on the 17th inst. by ship. He will touch at Zante on the road.
Pera of Constantinople, the 16th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 16.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
323. To the Resident in England.
Acknowledge receipt of his despatch of the 25th ult. The arming of ships which is proceeding there, with a report that they are to be sent to the Mediterranean against the Barbareschi is a matter for consideration, since the Algerians may declare war. However as his ability is applied to reap every advantage in these occurrences the Senate will wait to hear what ensues and where the ships in question will actually sail.
He will have heard from Vienna of the death of Count Collalto, but it is expected that that Court will send another in his place. If such an one comes he will follow the instructions already given for Collalto.
With regard to Galileo they can only say that the new Captain General at Sea has orders to do everything possible to ransom him, and they will do their utmost about paying the money due, but in the four months that have elapsed his agent has never appeared to make any request, so what he writes about using every diligence is contrary to the truth.
The republic of Genoa has chosen Giovanni Carlo Brignoli to be ambassador extraordinary at that Court, not only to compliment the king, but to obtain some advantage for trade, and this election was made after they had heard from their resident that when the ambassador arrived he would be treated in the manner that they desire. This notice will serve to stimulate his attention to see what happens in this particular.
Ayes, 125. Noes, 2. Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
April 16.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
324. To the Resident at Milan.
You will continue your attention to the transactions of the English ambassador, of whom you write that he has arrived, to proceed to Parma and to see the princess there with the idea of having her as a wife for his king, so that you may keep us punctually informed of what takes place in the progress of this affair.
Ayes, 125. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
April 20.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Milano.
Venetian
Archives.
325. Thadio Vico, Venetian Secretary at Milan, to the Doge and Senate.
On Saturday morning the earl of Bristol, the English ambassador, left here in continuation of his journey back to England. He was to have gone to Parma to see the princesses there so that he might subsequently report to his king which of them might suit him best for his marriage; but on arriving here he found himself with despatches which changed the commissions which he had previously received in Flanders, since the marriage proposed to the king of England with one of these princesses has not been and is not approved, indeed it has been definitely opposed by the lord chancellor and other ministers of that kingdom who consider that their private interests will be better served by one with Portugal. For this reason the Spaniards are not a little apprehensive about the conclusion especially since they learned about the proceedings and the close negotiations of the Portuguese ambassador in London for a transaction of this kind.
The earl of Bristol, in leaving here, took the road by Genoa, to see if he could find prompt transport from there for England.
The ambassador had no business with the governor here except that his Excellency hinted to him that he should dismiss from his king's mind the marriage with Portugal. For the rest he loaded him with attention and treated him with the utmost esteem at this Court, having him waited upon, until he left the state, by the Marquis Don Gerolamo Stampa. Before he went I paid him my respects in a fitting manner and he was very pleased, expressing the goodwill of his king to the most serene republic.
Milan, the 20th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
326. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
I must again crave indulgence for the brevity of these lines due not only to the lack of news but to the day, which is Good Friday according to the English style, when all Christians should put aside all business and spend the time in religious offices. I am called upon to assist at the celebrations in the chapel of your Excellencies recently decorated for these and for the Jubilee lately proclaimed, with no other desire than to draw a numerous crowd of people, which is extraordinary, so that they may admire the piety of the state and pray for the success of your Serenity's arms.
I have nothing to dilate upon, all business is asleep. I will only say that on the arrival of the ducali of the 26th March I at once spoke to the king about the two English merchantmen that were to transport troops and munitions for the Turks to Candia. The king was much annoyed and severely blamed the proceeding. He promised to send instructions to the ambassador at Constantinople to prevent similar inconveniences, so prejudicial to the republic and to all Christendom. I spoke to the secretary of state to get this done as he promised he would, and I shall not cease to press the matter until it is effected.
London, the 22nd April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
327. To the Resident at Milan.
Commend his action in paying his respects to the earl of Bristol, the English minister, since it may help not a little that the earl on his return will be able to tell the Court of the friendly disposition of the republic's ministers.
Ayes, 117. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
April 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
328. To the Resident in England.
Acknowledge his letters, No. 282. With regard to the establishment of an extraordinary at Antwerp, he is to use the ordinary route, except in special cases of urgency, when he is empowered to use the other at the cost indicated.
The earl of Bristol reached Milan on his way to Parma, but his orders were cancelled and he was directed to return at once, as he has done, going via Genoa.
The Grand Chancellor Ballarino, in letters of the 24th February, reports a matter of great moment, to wit a request by the Grand Vizier at the first audience of the new English ambassador, to have the use of 4 ships of that nation to take munitions, and the reluctance shown by him about yielding them, to the violence displayed by the Vizier in getting them, as by the enclosed copy. Desire him to thank his Majesty particularly for the prudent manner in which his ambassador has conducted himself expressing the state's appreciation of this, in the confidence that the king, of his piety and zeal will give resolute orders to his minister to resist more stoutly on other occasions any such violence, of which the resident can make the most, pointing out that such action is improper against a great and friendly prince, with detriment to freedom of trade and many other pernicious consequences to the injury of Christendom, which ought to be considered by the powers and all together should endeavour to resist the pride and progress of the Turks.
Ayes, 117. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
April 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Genoa.
Venetian
Archives.
329. Paris Tasca, Venetian Consul at Genoa, to the Doge and Senate.
We have here the earl of Bristol, a gentleman sent by the king of England who is proceeding to France on his way back to his master. He stayed three days at Parma to treat with his Highness there. Yesterday he was entertained by the state with refreshments and two gentlemen were selected to wait upon him. These last have not been able to pick up anything of moment only that he does not hold that the marriage of the king with the Portuguese is established, in spite of the report of it which comes from several quarters.
An English ship has arrived from Algiers. The captain reports that the commandant of the fortress there is having a fort constructed on the shore side to prevent the approach of enemy craft; also that fourteen ships with tops and some twenty caravels had gone out thence on a cruise and that three galleys were getting ready, also for privateering.
Genoa, the 23rd April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 26.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
330. Alvise Grimani, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
A certain Englishman has passed through this city who has been consul of his nation at Aleppo, (fn. 9) and is going to London and is full of wrath against the Barbary corsairs. It appears that his ship encountered a squadron of those of Tunis, and despite the flag of England and his being on board and that he showed everything that was requisite, they made him a slave, took the ship and the goods, which subsequently they treated to buy for as much as others were willing to give. He had the preference, and the money, a large amount, being found by merchants, he had the means to ransom himself, the ship and his goods. He declares that he will make such an outcry to the king and his countrymen that he hopes for the recovery of his money and revenge.
Paris, the 26th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian.
Archives.
331. Giacomo Quirini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
Owing to the despatch to Italy of the earl of Bristol by the king of England and on the supposition that at Parma he had set about to explain his commissions, all in harmony with the counsel and generous disposition of the Catholic king which consisted in paying down the dowry for this new marriage, they sent three days ago, with all secrecy, a courier to Milan. From what I have been assured he takes in the most ample form the adoption by the king here of the princess of Parma, declaring her his daughter and giving her the title of Infanta of Castile, so that with this honour King Charles may not look down upon the condition and inequality of that house … If this marriage takes place, as the Spaniards ardently desire, the dowry would be one of 500,000 gold crowns, the king of England undertaking however to observe the treaties made for the restoration of Jamaica and Dunkirk, so that with the same money, spread over several years, they would arrive at giving him a wife, agreeable to the king, they would shut out Braganza for ever and they would recover without delay the territories usurped by Cromwell's tyranny.
Don Luis remarked to me that the High Chancellor, a stern and restless man, opposed himself to the genius and quiet of the king, his master, delaying every proposal on the question and putting difficulties in the way, showing only too clearly his own private interest, his daughter being wife of the duke of York and mother of a prince declared of the royal house. These opinions are freely expressed in Spain and I know that the same sentiments have crossed the water to England. Coming to the knowledge of the Chancellor and weighed by him, who at the time of his embassy at Madrid did not show much liking for this Court, they may easily produce unfortunate results. But the Spaniards are determined to try all the ways to maintain themselves in credit and in confidence with the king personally. Meantime they resent here the announcement made by the Dutch ambassadors that sovereign is offering his mediation between the States and Portugal for the conquests made by the former in the East Indies.
Madrid, the 27th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Milano.
Venetian
Archives.
332. Thadio Vico, Venetian Secretary at Milan, to the Doge and Senate.
I had audience of the governor on Thursday. In the course of the conversation, speaking of the marriage of England with Braganza, he said that it was striding on with all the most efficacious means, and the duke was in particular gaining ground through the incessant operations of his ambassador, offering considerable sums of money, places for trade, suitable for all the routes. At this point he remarked to me that this was possibly the reason why the earl of Bristol returned with all speed to England, to see if he could turn the king away from this practice, by making him see the injury which he might bring upon his country by such an alliance, estranging himself rather than drawing closer with the interests of the other two crowns. The governor went on to say that the earl of Bristol was the king's chief intimate (gran privado) the one to whom he confides his most secret thoughts and interests, and to whom he has referred the most important affairs, and since his return to the throne he has also kept him constantly informed of his plans, as a man of great capacity and prudence, although not as yet of very mature age. So they will wait to hear what results may arise from this hasty journey of his. I have an inkling also that this may have been arranged by the Spaniards themselves as the earl is a great personage, a Catholic brought up and educated in Spain and excessively devoted to that crown.
With respect to Parma his Excellency said that nothing would be done, because the dowry that the duke would give would be a trifle, and the king of Spain would have to make good with hundreds of thousands, which would mean competing with the offers of Portugal. Moreover the Catholic was not at present in a position to do it, being compelled from the obligation to make war on these same Portuguese, to provide great sums of ready money, in the penury which they are experiencing for the reasons which he had already given me.
Here the governor did not forget to inform me that he had heard that the Dutch were in treaty with the king of England to give him for wife the Princess Maria of Nassau, sister of the late Prince of Orange, (fn. 10) with 400,000 florins in ready money, besides the jewels and other property in their appanages, which would be considerable. What matters more, if this young Prince of Orange should die, this Princess Maria would be the heir although sharing with her other two sisters, one of whom is now married to the Elector of Brandenburg, with a revenue and an inheritance of seven or eight places of great consequence, and great revenues in Holland, besides the Principality of Orange in France and in Burgundy of other lordships and assets of no slight moment. So it was notorious that she would be a rich princess and would bring the king of England far more wealth than the marriage with Portugal. In addition to this the States of Holland would seize the opportunity to make a much stronger and closer union with England, which on every account and in every respect would certainly prove of much greater advantage and profit for the interests of both nations than that with Portugal. He ended by saying that if the king his master could not upset this marriage with Portugal by the offices of the Earl of Bristol and by the very strong representations made by the Ambassador Martinez at London, it would prove more convenient, serviceable and satisfactory to the Catholic king that England should give ear and conclude the marriage rather with this Princess of Nassau, since the two crowns of France and Spain, with England and the States would be more secure and their relations better and more useful for their common service.
Milan, the 27th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
333. To the Resident in England.
Acknowledge his letters No. 283. Note that in addition to the arming of ships of war already advised, others are to be made ready. He must keep on the watch to see to what part they are directed, as well as the fleet of the Dutch, who are rendered very uneasy by this arming.
The ambassadors extraordinary chosen for that Court are ready and will be despatched this evening with their commissions and baggage, to undertake the journey at the earliest possible moment. He is advised of this in order that he may inform the king and let his Majesty know the desire of the republic to show him every possible testimony of esteem, as it will do upon every other occasion.
Ayes, 106. Noes, 1. Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
April 29.
Royal Letters.
Venice, 66.
Public Record
Office.
334. To the King of Great Britain, (fn. 11)
Unspeakable satisfaction of the republic at his Majesty's restoration to his crown by the grace of God, which he will have understood from their letters and from the Resident Giavarina. As a further expression of the State's content Angelo Correr and Michiel Morosini have been chosen as ambassadors extraordinary, who are about to leave. Ask him to give them full credence, they having instructions to assure him of the best intentions and affectionate regard of this republic, such as she has professed for so long a time to his glorious progenitors and desires to continue with even greater perfection. Wishing him every felicity.
[Italian.]
April 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
335. Francesco Giavarina, Venetian Resident in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The Court spent the whole week away from the city at Windsor castle for the ceremony of the installation of the knights of St. George which was performed with the greatest pomp and magnificence. Returned to London yesterday evening they immediately instituted new ceremonies for the creation of knights of the Bath. To this order, the second in England and highly esteemed, his Majesty is to-day installing 64 deserving persons, (fn. 12) in reward for their services not only to the crown in general but to his royal person and family.
By reason of so many ceremonials, which are performed in the most punctilious and sumptuous manner without stint of gold or any other ornament, with an undescribable concourse of people, not only from the kingdom but from foreign lands to see the functions, there is a truce to all business, they only talk of these rejoicings, the secretariat at the palace is closed, neither the magistrates nor any one else will treat of anything; all the leading ministers are busy taking part in the ceremonies which will not cease before next week, as Monday and Tuesday are to be spent over the coronation which will be one of the most conspicuous festivities that can be seen in this realm. After that they will resume business and there will be more opportunity for reports especially as a few days later the new session of parliament will be opened, which will no doubt produce something of consequence.
The very day that the king left for Windsor for the purpose mentioned, the sectaries here, considering the opportunity favourable to attempt something to their advantage, with all the Court and nearly all the city away, made some slight disturbance, but they were easily put down by the arrest of some who have been sent to prison for examination when the present preoccupations are ended, and punished according to their deserts.
No news has yet come of the earl of Bristol, to the general astonishment so it is not known what he has negotiated with the duke of Parma. Every one is most eager to hear all particulars.
After staying at the Court several months the Palatine Prince Rupert left on Monday for Germany to exercise the charge he holds in the army of his imperial Majesty and employ his abilities against the Turks, if the emperor comes to an open breach with them, as all expect.
I continue to press the secretary of state to carry out the king's intentions with regard to the orders to the ambassador at Constantinople. He promises to do so but I do not think he will until after the present functions, with which he is exceedingly busy.
London, the 29th April, 1661.
[Italian.]
April 30.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
336. To the Duchess of Anjou.
Gratification of the Senate at hearing from the Ambassador Grimani of her marriage to the Duke of Anjou, upon which they desire to offer their congratulations as a testimony of the ancient and cordial regard and esteem professed by the republic to that crown and to the Majesty of Great Britain as well.
Ayes, 130. Noes, 1. Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
April 30.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
337. To the Ambassador in France.
The nuptials between the duke of Anjou and the princess of England having taken place, consider it necessary to send him letters of credence for her. He is to present these with a suitable office. Observe that he has performed offices with the Dutch ambassadors. He is to continue to cultivate the best relations with them in accordance with the instructions given to the ambassadors extraordinary for England, so that they may be able to seize the openings which appear to them best for increasing the same.
Ayes, 130. Noes, 1. Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]
April 30.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Genova.
Venetian
Archives.
338. Paris Tasca, Venetian Consul at Genoa, to the Doge and Senate.
Letters from England reached the earl of Bristol by way of Leghorn which recall him home with all speed. This obliged him to ask for a galley from the government here to transport him to Caneue in Provence, where he takes the post. This was readily granted to him. He let it be understood that he has to be in London at the naming of the new parliament.
Genoa, the 30th April, 1661.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Anne Marie Louise, duchess of Montpensier, daughter of Gaston duke of Orleans, brother of Louis XIII. She was born on 29 May, 1627.
2 The four were John Fowke, Sir William Thompson, William Love and John Jones, returned on 19–29 March. Return of Members of Parliament Vol. i., page 525. Fowke was a proclaimed traitor, Love a Leveller and Thompson and Jones Presbyterians. Hist. MSS. Comm, Finch PapersVol. i., page 120. See Pepys: Diary Vol. i., page 362
3 The chevalier du Boloy (Boulay). His letters of credence dated from Heytershem on 21 February, 1661. S.P. For. Germany, Slates.
4 Cosimo son of Ferdinand II Grand Duke of Tuscany, who married Margaret Louise, second daughter of Gaston duke of Orleans, in the following June.
5 On 31 March.
6 See Cal. J.P. Dom. 1600–1, page 536 note. The Calendar contains abstracts of 66 intercepted letters of March 18, 19 and 20, old style, most of them referring to the election.
7 Zachary Crofton, vicar of St. Botolph, Aldgate. Pepys: Diary Vol. i, page 364. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1660–1, pp. 546, 581. He was sent to the Tower on 23 March–2 April. Kingdom's Intelligencer, March 18–25.
8 Alessandro Farnese, younger brother of Ranuccio II, duke of Parma. He arrived from Paris on Monday, 4 April. Brit. Mus, Add. MSS. 27962Q, f. 46d.
9 Henry Riley, Hist. MSS. Comm. Finch Papers Vol. i, page 108. He presented himself at the Court of the Levant Co. on 2–12 May. Court Book, S.P. For. Archives Vol. 152, f. 23.
10 Youngest daughter of Henry Frederick, Prince of Orange, born in 1638.
11 Not entered in the register of the Senate's deliberations.
12 A list of those knighted is given in the Kingdom's Intelligencer Dec. 31–Jan. 7. It contains sixty-eight names.


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