Venice
December 1663

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1932

Pages

270-275

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'Venice: December 1663', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 33: 1661-1664 (1932), pp. 270-275. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=90123 Date accessed: 22 July 2014.


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December 1663

Dec. 4.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
367. Alvise Sagredo, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
From London I have received two considerable items of news, which are to some extent related if they should prove true. One is that the Grand Turk has promised King Charles not only his true friendship, and to that end the pledging and ratification for the punctual observance of the peace and of what the Barbary corsairs have promised about allowing English ships to trade freely, but that the reception of the Portuguese ambassador and the treatment he will receive at the Porte will afford a more certain testimony of the good effects of the same. The other that during the war with the republic and the emperor he shall not permit subjects and ships of his nation to intervene for the defence of the said princes, his enemies. Thus I am assured that whereas they cloaked the despatch of the secretary from Smyrna, which I reported, who has also arrived this last week, (fn. 1) it is equally clear that this move was not necessary, as it was enough to send the letters by a courier.
Paris, the 4th December, 1663.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Dec. 5.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
368. Giovanni Cornaro, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
I have always reported confidential communications with the ministers, and I would willingly have helped to forward negotiations. None the less they have not been idle and already the Irishman who urns sent to England has succeeded in persuading them to send an ambassador to this Court. He is awaited with extraordinary content, conspicuous in the ministers though the satisfaction is general, in the hope that by such means their domestic trouble here may more easily have an end. The condition of their interests here must needs persuade that the Catholic king shall abandon the war of Portugal and join in a war at the place of greater need and peril.
As yet there is no certainty about the English ambassador, though orders have been issued by the king for the provision of a house. One reflects that this one has been ambassador in Portugal, which he left not long since almost as if he was coming with instructions from that quarter. These last days moreover they have published, though with some uncertainty, the death of the queen regnant of England. This would be important news, but the time is short to ascertain the truth of it. In the mean time your Excellencies may rest assured that in one way and another there is no sign of sufficient apparatus here for any enterprise in Portugal in the coming campaign.

Madrid, the 5th December, 1663.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Dec. 5.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
369. Giovanni Cornaro, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The Barbary corsairs are inflicting serious damage in these seas and from the reprisals it is clear that they are unwilling to carry out the agreements with the English and the Dutch, as they make booty of the ships of both nations.
Madrid, the 5th December, 1663.
[Italian.]
Dec. 11.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
370. Alvise Sagredo, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
I called on the English ambassador last week. He has not yet made his public entry and is awaiting the decision of King Charles, as he is unwilling to yield the pass to the coaches of the princes of the blood. I tried to find out the reason why Viscount Falcombrige was not coming to Venice, expressing my uncertainty as to whether it was due to loss of the royal favour or from some private mishap. The ambassador said he had told me all he knew about it and asked if Sig. Mocenigo would delay his start until the spring. I said I supposed he would. He asked about the Turks and I inquired about the pirates. He said that only one flag ship had been taken, although the Dutch announce that there were several. This ship bore no sign or mark to show that it was royal and had not even passports of the duke of York, the lord high Admiral. (fn. 2) I remarked on the great temerity shown by the Barbareschi in breaking the peace and thus offending so generous and great a power, though indeed they break faith with all. He said this was true and in addition the Grand Turk has solemnly ratified their reciprocal treaties, but the only sure method of keeping those barbarians in order is and will be the cannon and armaments which are forthcoming from London. From this I was able to gather that while they do not fear those infidels and have no sort of intention of running any risks against them, yet this and other difficulties will always come in the way to thwart the course of that fortunate navigation which the Dutch have hitherto enjoyed.
I went on to speak of the vast designs of the Turk and that your Serenity stood alone against the common enemy. He said that it was one of the most glorious actions of the republic.
He told me that the queen regnant had had a slight access of fever, but was now in perfect health. The affairs of the kingdom were proceeding in quiet after they had laid hands on some officers who had conspired together against the government and against the royal house. The excuses about the Ambassador Cominges arriving late and consequently leaving again at once without taking part in the lord mayor's banquet had been reciprocal between the two kings, so the slight irritation of the French minister about it had altogether vanished. They were attending to an increase of the garrison of Tanger with many infantry and with 200 horse. Lord Tiviot was setting out in that direction, travelling by land, and accordingly he is expected here in Paris. But as the fortress itself has no need of such assistance, and as the English so far have said nothing about it all being on behalf of Portugal, one must wait to see what time will bring forth.
Paris, the 11th December, 1663.
[Italian.]
Dec. 14.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
371. Giovanni Sagredo, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, the Doge and Senate.
The Count of Sicindorf has been nominated ambassador for Denmark, the Count Chinischi for Poland, the Count of Vindisgratz for Sweden, the Count of Chininsnech for England. It is a proof of the deliberation and sluggishness of this country that although these missions to the Christian princes were decided by the secret Council three months ago they have not yet been carried into effect. the lack of money shipwrecks every decision. Although all the gentlemen named above are equal to the character of ambassador, the title has not been given to them, for two reasons, first to avoid the cost and second because without the necessity for a grand train they can make the journey with despatch. Their commissions are limited to communicating the vast designs of the Ottoman and to ask for help to resist so violent an invasion.
Linz, the 14th December, 1663.
[Italian.]
Dec. 18.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
372. Alvise Sagredo, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Letters of the 11th from London report that the queen is better. Admiral Lausson has received orders to proceed to the Mediterranean against the corsairs and to wage a ruthless war against them. Already they had declared that they meant to search on every occasion for foreign goods on English ships, which were proceeding from one sea to another and from port to port. This resolution is set forth in the royal will and in the intention of those ministers, since they announced to the secretary, who came from Constantinople and who proceeded to Algiers on purpose to notify them of the ratification of the treaties obtained from the Sultan, that English ships and goods should always remain unmolested, but that they meant to search them because if they found foreign goods they claimed that they were not breaking the agreements if they took away these alone, letting the vessels go free.
The earl of Bristol, who brought forward the charges against the lord chancellor already reported, was believed by every one to be a Roman Catholic, since he voluntarily deprived himself of the privileges enjoyed by members of parliament who belong to the Anglican communion. In a parish church of Essex he has declared himself of the Protestant religion and he chose to take part in the divine offices with the others of the reform. At the next session of parliament which will meet in February next he proposes to take his seat and subsequently to proceed with more severity with the charges and action aforesaid.
Paris, the 18th December, 1663.
[Italian.]
Dec. 19.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
373. Giovanni Cornaro, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The ambassador of the king of England (fn. 3) destined for this Court has caused his arrival to be foreshadowed by a person who is to make ready the house and provide what is necessary. He has made a list of twelve houses among the best and most roomy. I congratulated the duke of Medina upon this event. He answered that he had given me his own opinion, he did not know what others thought. If Portugal could be conquered in two years he would devote himself to the task. The coming of the English ambassador was useful, but every proposal of Braganza will be contested by the obstinacy of the people. He was not master to do what he would. This coming was nevertheless useful on account of the interests of the Indies and to know the aims and tendencies of that government. It behoved them to settle something definitely and not remain subject to constant losses.
Madrid, the 19th December, 1663.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Dec. 24.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
374. Alvise Sagredo, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The English ambassador paid, me a short visit the day before yesterday. He told me that he had orders from King Charles to make no other entry, but to ask for his first audience right away, because of the difficulty about the coaches. When I spoke about the corsairs he told me that King Charles was quite determined not only to obviate trouble in the future but to despatch a powerful fleet to assert his rights against the general breaches of faith.
By the letters of last week the queen regnant is said to be in excellent health. News had reached London that the Moors bordering on Tanger had broken their faith and the peace made with them, having attempted to surprise the place itself, but without success. Accordingly the earl of Tiviot has orders to start immediately.
A fresh conspiracy had been discovered in the county of Lancaster, but the foresight of the royal colonels had immediately applied the remedy.
A part of the silver of the fleet has arrived in London in two vessels from Cadiz. It was to have gone to Paris, seeing the greed of these new farmers who have taken the royal mint on hire, with the augmentation already reported, but in regard of the obligation imposed on the merchants by Sig. Colbert.
I understand that the affair of the Huguenots of Luserna has taken a turn for the worse, through the encouragement given by many Protestant princes. The Most Christian has been pressed to ask the duke to continue the privileges they enjoyed before the exchange and to carry out the treaty of 1655. I know that the English ambassador has very positive orders and commissions from King Charles to protect and support them with offices and with all possible pressure.
Paris, the eve of Christmas, 1663.
[Italian.]
Dec. 25.
Inquisitori di
Stato.
Busta, 418.
Venetian
Archives.
375. Giovanni Battista Ballarino, Venetian Resident at Constantinople, to the Inquisitors of State.
Having summoned before me Giovanni di Simon di Berder, regular secretary of the chancery, an Armenian very intimate with Demetrio Piron, goldsmith, brother of Antonio, dragoman of England, who has now been more than two months in this city, he spoke as follows: Some days before the house of the most serene republic in Pera was attacked I happened to be in the house of Piron, who tells me all his affairs, owing to our mutual interest, At that time the dragoman his brother was also here by order of the English ambassador to give 2,000 reals to the Caimecan in payment for certain commands which he gave them for Barbary. This dragoman in conversation said that in the Venetian embassy there were two human figures of cloth, but this must be kept quiet. I thought no more about it and nothing further was said nor was any mention made by him of the English ambassador nor of Draperis; but it is certain that Piron cannot have heard of it from any other quarter. A few days aftercame the news from Constantinople of the arrest of the witches, of the attack on the embassy and its being sealed up, and of the great disaster which followed that event.
Pera of Constantinople, 25 December, 1663.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Dec. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
376. To the Ambassador in Spain.
When the ambassador arrives whom it is reported that the English king proposes to send to the Catholic, in connection with the negotiations of that Irishman who in London insinuated a desire for an adjustment with Braganza, we are sure there will be no lack of application on your part to penetrate to the core of his proceedings and to advise us about them.
Ayes, 140. Noes, 0. Neutral, 0.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 The secretary, Paul Rycaut, reached London on 8–18 November, Hist. MSS. Comm., Finch Papers Vol. i., page 287.
2 Apparently the Henry, Nathaniel Haymore, master, reported by Consul Browne to have been brought, into Algiers on 16 September. Browne's despatch of 29 Sept., 1603. S.P. Foreign Spain, Vol. xlv.
3 Sir Richard Fanshawe.