Venice
February 1667

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

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1935

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125-137

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'Venice: February 1667', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 35: 1666-1668 (1935), pp. 125-137. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=90210 Date accessed: 25 October 2014.


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February 1667

Feb. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
138. Marc Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
During these last days every one was cherishing good hope of hearing in a few weeks of the much desired peace between these Northern powers. It now seems as if doubts are rising again, fears are reawakening and that the troubles mean to continue. L'Isola, the imperial envoy, now in London, employs all his powers to trouble affairs and to keep these two crowns committed. The Austrians understand full well that the war of the North is a dyke which holds back the torrent of arms which threatens Flanders and which may bring revolts to Germany.
A manuscript paper which has been placed in Cæsar's hands from this quarter by an individual friendly to his party has stirred the ministers of that monarch to take the necessary precautions. The paper gives an abstract of all the claims of this crown upon Brabant, and gives valid reasons for taking it. In the mean time L'Isola has offered to the British sovereign the mediation of Cæsar, to reduce the differences to a composition, but rather to make himself master of their interests and to turn things to please himself. The artifice was too apparent and was refused at a glance, upon the legitimate excuse that they did not wish to offend the Swedes in this way, who with sincerity and candour and with the consent of the parties from the beginning of the breach, had been accepted as mediators and who have set on foot the negotiations.
L'Isola would like to postpone the accommodation, at least until they might see the crown assured on the head of Portugal, either with a long truce or by a safe peace. He puts forward proposals for a defensive alliance of the Austrians with the English, points out the disadvantages to the British king if the strong places of Flanders should fall into the hands of the French, his offer not being intended to put off a peace near at hand. If a truce should come about with Portugal, and a disposition to conclude one is said to be very near, and it seems that the prudence of the Spaniards does not intend to put it off any longer, this is an argument for a defensive alliance of the Austrians with the English to secure Flanders. It would certainly prove an obstacle to the designs of others and would change the order of their intentions. Rovigni has been missing some days from the Court. Those most closely on the watch believe that he has crossed to England to set himself in opposition to the negotiations of Isola.
The Dutch are watching all this; they have accompanied it with the desire for the lesser evil. They would gladly see themselves at peace with England, but if this should chance to lead to a new war in Flanders, next door to them, they are doubtful whether an accommodation would be preferable to the present rupture.
Paris, the 1st February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 1.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archive.
139. Marc Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The French privateers, which cruise about inshore, do not fail to profit by the capture every week of some English ship, to the no slight prejudice of the trade of Ostend.
The Lords States have been informed, possibly for the purpose of increasing their hatred of the English, that there are persons who have secret intelligence with England, who are engaged in contriving a great blow to their hurt, in no wise inferior to the fire which took place last summer at Vlie. On this account they live in great apprehension and every day they cause the ice which surrounds their towns on the sea, to be cut, for fear of some landing and a surprise attack. All lodginghouse keepers and landlords, under pain of severe penalties, have been ordered to make a return of the number and names of the persons whom they lodge. The guards for the ships have been augmented, for their protection, even in the ports and in the places where they are building. His Majesty has issued the same orders for his own and has charged the superintendants to exercise the utmost care. They have been emptied of their gunpowder and of every thing that might add to the danger in the case of treason.
The merchant fleet of England which is to sail towards the Strait was ready to start. Five frigates of war are to serve them as an escort. (fn. 1)
Two Frenchmen who were getting ready to cross to Ireland to stir up seditious tumults in that country, have been arrested and imprisoned in London, being disclosed as the accomplices and partners of some others of this nation who are prisoners in the Tower of London. The earl of Argile, who was pursuing the rebels in the county of Kentri in Ireland, making a careful search everywhere, has succeeded in securing the son of Wallace, one of the chief promoters of the trouble. (fn. 2)
Parliament has presented a petition to the king to have an exact inquiry made about the one who has controlled the money of the kingdom, reporting that there was no more money due to his Majesty except what had been taken from him by evil acts and fraud. He has chosen six members of the Upper House and twelve of the Lower to go through the accounts of the one who has his hand in the affairs. (fn. 3)
Another accidental fire has occurred at Witecapel, where the gunpowder which was sold at a certain house caught fire and blew it up, reducing to ashes many others in its neighbourhood. (fn. 4)
Paris, the 1st February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 5.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Firenze.
Venetian
Archives.
140. Antonio Maria Vicenti, Venetian Resident at Florence, to the Doge and Senate.
The Resident of England left this city a few days ago for Leghorn, where as a rule he stays for the whole of the time that the Court is settled at Pisa. Nothing more is said about the coming of the English preacher I wrote about, and it is believed that the Resident has been persuaded by the Grand Duke to prevent this from happening.
Pisa, the 5th February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
141. Marc Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The arms of his Majesty in North America are enjoying no ordinary successes. A ship arrived at la Rochelle which sailed from the island of San Christoforo, leaves word that Mons. Etrage, Viceroy for his Majesty in those parts, having assembled all the troops and inspirited the French commanders, proceeded to attack the islands of Tobacco, Antigoa, Sant' Eustachio, Monserrat and Ganghille, which he captured, driving out the English who were masters there. The same ship also brings assurances that thirteen ships of the Western trade had left there to return to France. This has given great satisfaction to the founders and those interested in the trade, and when the ships cast anchor in this kingdom it will increase their propensity to apply themselves to that trade.
Two Dutch ships at a short distance from the shores of La Rochelle encountered three English ones with cargo. Both sides engaged fiercely, and after some hours of mutual torment the Dutch overcame the three English, who have a cargo worth 80,000 crowns. (fn. 5) The booty was taken into the port of La Rochelle, and there it is to be sold, after paying the duties.
Paris, the 8th February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
142. Marin Zorzi, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
Her Majesty has at length thought fit to give satisfaction to the Ambassador Sanduich in the matter of the truce. This is reduced from sixty years to forty-five, not that any good reason can be given for this reduction, but for the sake of having modified the proposal in some respect. They refer it to the king of England to receive the promise, without committing themselves to treat with Braganza, or in treating with him to name, on the one side the queen of Spain and the crown of Castile, with the crown of Portugal on the other. The principal motives which have influenced the government are those which have frequently been indicated. In addition they have considered that it is always a good thing to show to the world the most forward disposition for quiet, to smoothe away the difficulties of this crown, and for their part not to draw back, indeed rather to run to embrace the proposal to lay down arms and to enjoy peace during the minority. Above all they consider it extremely advantageous to oblige the king of England by such a lively testimony of confidence. It would seem impossible after so conspicuous a show of respect and esteem for his mediation that he should not be captivated for the utmost correspondence in this same treaty. It is believed therefore that if Braganza does not yield to his authority he will force him to yield to protests and threats.
Such are the sentiments and ideas of the ministers, which they have been led to believe through the inducements and flattering words of the earl of Sanduich. Much has been offered and promised by him, but with respect to fulfilment by his king, not a few remain doubtful through mistrust rather than persuaded by hope. He therefore pledges himself that if acceptation of the truce does not come from Braganza, he will be constrained by the British king by the clearest and most absolute forms. He even goes so far as to say that he will be deprived of all assistance and abandoned. It is in this that the most advantageous point of the affair consists and of the benefit claimed. Whether he actualty has the king's promise not only approved but carried into effect, it is not easy to judge. Withdrawals, interpretations, excuses certainly will not be lacking as the experience of last year suggests and confirms.
I know that a confidant of the ambassador, speaking with him about such an obligation received the answer that the abandonment of the duke of Braganza must be understood in two ways. One is in his own defence, in preserving the crown, in repelling the attacks of the Spaniards. This is incompatible with reason, with propriety and with the duty of mere friendship, not to speak of the very close relationship. The other case would be if the Portuguese, taking advantage of favourable circumstances, should decide to invade Castile, pushing their conquests and, not content with their own, set foot in the realms of the Catholic. In such a case his Britannic Majesty, instead of limiting, would entirely withdraw his succour. Such is the distinction which the ambassador set forth with complete candour. Accordingly the interpretation put in London on the crucial point and the punctual obligation will be interesting and important.
Here in the mean time some ambiguity has arisen about setting out this same article in writing. The two secretaries meeting together are to draw up the paper. It will then be read to the ministers and approved by their consent. Some dispute has already begun as well over the nature of the words as over the substance of the business itself. The English one wanted to cut it short using obscure, captious and equivocal phrases. The other insists on clarity, rather excessive than otherwise, maintaining that it ought to be set out with the full meaning in all sincerity. After some disputation it is believed that they are certain to agree, as at the outset they will wish with zealous emulation to make a show of vigilance, finesse and ability.
The ambassador of France affects to deride this same treaty. He suggests that the English do not possess the influence with the duke of Braganza that is wrongly supposed. With great sagacity he induces them to believe that the English, amid infinite miseries, are not in a position to be considered authoritative when they are not powerful, or when they are not at liberty to make use of their strength. For this reason the government is making a mistake in referring to their arbitrament the direction of this thorny affair, with the intention that they may dispose of the wishes of the Portuguese. The Spaniards will very speedily become aware of their mistake and of the injury done.
To these utterances no answer is given. They are seen to be full of affectation not of affection; his spirit is distraught by envy and confused by other passions. What he chiefly objects to is that the attitude of this crown towards England shows so clear a propensity and may proceed to closer agreements; at least they hold out hopes to the earl of Sandevich, in order to disturb, by the confidence of alliances and support, the dealings for peace with France at this season.
In such considerations Ambrun is not deceived, it being certain that it will not please this government to see the Most Christian with his hands free and it will leave nothing undone so that he may continue to have them occupied.
Madrid, the 9th February, 1667.
[Italian.]
Feb. 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Firenze.
Venetian
Archives.
143. Antonio Maria Vincenti, Venetian Resident at Florence, to the Doge and Senate.
They write from Leghorn that seven English ships encountering five French ones armed for war, overcame them after a long engagement, capturing three of them and sent two to the bottom, but as the English were continuing on their way, uplifted by their victory, they were met by four powerful Danish ships, by whom they were beaten and routed. However, the Grand Duke has no word of this and it is not yet considered as certain.
Pisa, the 12th February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
144. Marc Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Lord Germen is at Scialto, a place a short distance from this city, (fn. 6) whereat the queen of England, his mistress, is staying. They say that he is giving her an account of what he has done for her own private affairs and the arrangement about her appanage, but that he also holds proposals of peace between the crowns and the allies. What these may be has not yet been discovered by any one.
Paris, the 15th February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 15.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
145. Marc Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The successes in the West Indies serve as a spur to fresh efforts. The king has decided to send out twenty companies of veteran troops under M. Bas, the one who some years ago proceeded to Candia. The government is attracted by the idea of expansion in America where they are persuaded that they will find mountains pregnant with treasure.
His Majesty has directed the ships of Dunkirk to attack all the ships of Ostend and Bruges which may be carrying merchandise to England.
There are said to be differences between the two Houses over the question of the administration of the money expended for the maintenance of the fleets of England. The king there, in order to be able to arrange peace better would like to dismiss parliament, but the shortage of money which he experiences forces him to put up with their meeting. This crown has contrived to have conveyed to his ears that if he shows vigour and courage in what he knows to be for the advantage of his kingdom, he will always be supported when he is annoyed by those who are ill affected towards his crown. Encouraged by this it is believed that he will be able to take his way towards peace with more determination.
To the letter written to him by the States no answer has yet been given. It is stated that the Swedish mediators have not yet presented it, waiting for a better opportunity for obtaining a favourable reply, or it may be from design, in order through the delay, to have them committed to the beginnings of the campaign. The Baron Isola does not abandon any effort to thwart the adjustment.
Paris, the 15th February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 16.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
146. Marin Zorzi, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The English ambassador has been to this house and told me that he had written to his king about the ships and that orders would be sent directly. I thanked him warmly. He asked me about the intentions of the Turks for the coming campaign. I told him what had happened and the dangers. He remarked, If a part of our fleet should advance into those waters that of the Turk would soon beat a cowardly and disordered retreat. I should glory to take command of it for the relief of Candia and even against Constantinople, but our wars close at hand turn our thoughts away from distant emergencies.
I tried to find out the state of his negotiations. The secretary was with him and was very chary about giving information on current matters. However on being provoked by me with some adroitness he delivered himself with sufficient clearness. He said he hoped that everything was practically settled. After a long while the ambassador had come to an agreement on principles with her Majesty's ministers and upon the most serious points. All that was wanted was to have it set out in writing. For this he was meeting with the secretary of state of her Majesty, but he disclosed some change from what had already been agreed upon, particularly upon the point of the obligation they claimed that the British king should abandon his brother-in-law if he does not accept the truce. The ambassador had never consented to such a procedure. He had intimated many times, as if on his own responsibility, that his Britannic Majesty will not fail to render this crown content in terms of courteous correspondence, not of a rigorous obligation. The declaration asked for would not do on any account, because the mediator must show himself impartial during the progress of the negotiations, and not assume conditions of partisanship before the treaty is thrashed out. The mediation of Sweden is proceeding in the same fashion, because neither England nor Holland is asking them to adhere to their side against the one who refuses the proposals made for the settlement. It was therefore a pretext to cut short the negotiations as they had no intention of carrying them to completion. The Spaniards were proceeding with excessive finesse, and he might say with the most patent deceitfulness.
While the secretary spoke thus, the ambassador with a wrathful gesture added, They think they are deceiving my king, but they will live to regret it. In order not to lose the friendship of France they are unwilling to ally themselves with us, but before long they will have both us and the French as enemies alike. We shall arrive at peace and the closest union with that crown. The opportunity must not be lost of dividing up the Indies with the Most Christian, capturing the fleets and smashing the trade of these realms everywhere. If I chance to be recalled at an early date my mission and sojourn here of a year will have served for bitterness and loss.
He uttered all these strong sentiments (sensitivi concetti) in an impetuous and ardent manner. In replying I tried to use tact. The secretary interposed a few words, I will not say suave, but a little less bitter.
Such is the state of this affair. It has frequently been seen to fall and rise again. As things are now it is in the most hazardous condition.
Madrid, the 16th February, 1667.
[Italian.]
Feb. 18.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci
Ceffalonia.
Venetian
Archives.
147. Andrea Lippomanno, Venetian Provedatore of Cephalonia, to the Doge and Senate.
The appearance of English ships, so greatly desired here, even if they were numerous enough to cause the disposal of the whole currant crop, in consideration of the tenuity of the price and the scanty harvest of the current year, would not, so far as I can see, suffice to meet the debts contracted, which ought to be paid from the new impost, or for the assignments of Corfu, Candia and the forces. The deficiency is due to nothing but bad fortune. Up to the present not a sou has reached the chamber in respect of that same duty.
Cephalonia, the 8th February, 1667, old style.
[Italian.]
Feb. 19.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Firenze.
Venetian
Archives.
148. Antonio Maria Vincenti, Venetian Resident at Florence, to the Doge and Senate.
I have devoted my attention to obtaining information about ships at Leghorn, and have been in person to the Molo. Of thirty ships there only five are suitable. An English ship, which is the best of them, cannot be hired, as the agent can only sell it and he demands 10,000 pieces of eight. The ship Isabella belonging to Celibi might prove of great service. The others are not available. But I hope to be able to do something before long, as I learn that on the 21st ult. eight powerful ships left London for this mart, (fn. 7) four of them merchantmen and four armed to escort them, so they have been twenty-nine days on their voyage. The English resident who is still staying at Leghorn, I might say as resident, as consul and as a merchant, promises to do his utmost to induce at least two of these to take the employment. Other ships as well are expected. The English Resident has promised to let me know when the ships arrive.
Pisa, the 19th February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
149. Marc Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
It is generally believed that peace with England will be followed by a rupture with Spain.… Castel Rodrigo has written to Madrid that the designs of France are against Flanders and that an attack from that quarter is inevitable when an adjustment is made with England, an opinion which has great appearance of probability and which has great influence in inducing them to supply money and assistance.
The Dutch minister has pressed for permission for his country to trade again with this. An answer was delayed, but on his making remonstrance he obtained the concession. Nevertheless, the king has sent an intimation to the principal merchants who have dealings with those traders, deftly giving them to understand that he will be greatly displeased if they make a purchase of foreign merchandise, which amounts to a tacit prohibition of commerce.
Three ships with very rich cargoes and jewels to the value of over 100,000 crowns, many of which had come from the Indies and were for the duke of Mazarini, have been defeated and captured by six English cruisers at a short distance from La Rochelle. Neither the will nor authority avail for enriching onesself, the chief thing that is needed is good fortune.
Paris, the 22nd February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
150. Marc Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Lord Germen has no business of consequence. He brought for king compliments from his Britannic Majesty rather than projects for peace. It would seem that he has not succeeded in penetrating to the core of that government, or that he did not find a soil prepared for his operations, but rather a feeling of resignation to fortune, and in such case he could not pick up what was not there. An idea prevails, derived from letters from London and supported by those of Brussels, that Baron Isola has arranged and established an alliance in words between the Austrians and English, to be guarded with the greatest secrecy. To these Spain is to furnish a certain sum in cash for the maintenance of the naval forces, the English being pledged to employ their forces for the preservation of the Austrian dominions if they are attacked from this quarter. The truth will not be so easy to bring to light, since the Spaniards roundly deny it. But Baron Isola is not standing idle in London; he is frequently meeting the ministers. He is a man of intrigue and knows how to seize his opportunities. He does not cease to urge upon the king the desirability of accepting the mediation of the emperor for the peace negotiations. He studies to win over the Swedes so that they may not be able to consider themselves affronted, pointing out to them that as a prince of the empire Sweden cannot complain of the interposition of the emperor in a matter which is concerned with the quiet of the empire. It may not be altogether displeasing to the Swedes, who love war rather than peace between any princes, no matter who, that the Austrians should put their hands to such an affair, as they know a good way to render any accommodation difficult.
It would seem that the British king has relaxed from his original severity, when he refused to Isola the mediation of Caesar, and that he entertains some disposition to receive it, possibly because he finds that the Swedes are not offended, as he expected. It is accordingly believed that after the nomination once more of the place for the congress, the king will declare his will and it will then fall to Isola, if England consents, to try and get the approval of the allies also. There might be objections or at least discussions, which would serve to waste time and carry on the matter until the opening of the campaign, which is what all the mediators desire.
In the mean time the British king has dissolved parliament, having first induced it to grant him a sum of money for the campaign. This separation of the Chambers offers good hope of peace. The king may follow his own inclination, which leans towards quiet. It is stated, indeed, as a fact that he has sent to Holland the reply to the letter of civility sent to him by the States some weeks ago, in which his Majesty abounds in the most ample declarations of his affectionate good will towards the confederate Provinces, going so far as to declare that for the peace congress he could not propose a more suitable place or one that would give him greater satisfaction than the Hague itself. This is certainly a very generous offer or a very astute one if he aims at creating mistrust between the allies and winning over the Dutch.
Van Boninghen, however, assures them that no inducement will ever serve to make them give ear to negotiations except with the consent of the parties. The disposition for an accommodation, although thwarted and opposed by the Austrians with all their might, seems to be very good, and some are persuaded that peace will come in a few weeks, Heaven grant that it may happen so, unless it means to be the cause of new and worse troubles.
Paris, the 22nd February, 1666. [M.V.]
[Italian.]
Feb. 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
151. Marin Zorzi, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The English ambassador has given an intimation that although the business of Portugal is in suspense the negotiations about trade may be brought to perfection. The one is independent of the other, of benefit to the nations and the subjects of both crowns. They ought therefore to settle it, although they disagree about other interests.
In the Council of State the new proposal was closely investigated. The majority agreed in the view that the two questions were bound together and united, and they could not be separated. They were begun and promoted at the same time and ought to end similarly. This will be the more advantageous course, because when the English have obtained their intent about trade, they will not show any gratitude or memory of the favour obtained. At present therefore it behoves them to maintain that if they look for satisfaction it is incumbent upon them in their interests with the duke of Braganza to afford the most exact correspondence, promise to abandon him and give assurance by a definite promise to repay the good will of this crown by the fullest demonstrations. Without something of this kind the British king will gain all the fruit of the treaty, while on the side of the Spaniards there will be nothing honourable, still less of profit. Concurring in these sentiments the government announced to the earl of Sandvich that it was the queen's will that both points should be settled or dropped. The English to give the promise to abandon Portugal, the Spaniards to consent to the articles advantageous for the English nation in the agreement.
When the decision was reported to the English ambassador he greatly resented the refusal. He replied with arguments and remonstrances, but he did not get any more from them. They stand fast here by a definite principle, that in negotiations it is necessary to observe a certain equilibrium of corresponding and reciprocal conditions. But they find that the Spanish nation gains little or nothing in the kingdom of England and gets no extension (non s'estende). The English, on the other hand, derive considerable gain, coming to these ports to bring and take away abundance of goods. Since this crown gains nothing in the way of commerce by the treaty, prudence teaches them to procure their advantage and service by other ways. There is no other way than to obtain the pledge to abandon the Portuguese. If they do not agree to this it is recognised as necessary to cut short all the threads and discontinue conversations.
A minister has told me that much is being done at present in favour of the English, to render them quiet and contented. It is agreed that their ships shall be treated in exactly the same way as those of France and Holland, in the matter of the right of search, the payment of duties and entry into the ports. To give them a share of all facilities except in the Indies. Their demands meet with no difficulty or objection, all for the purpose of winning proportionate correspondence by generous methods. It seems incompatible to the government that the English should gather the fruits of a sincere friendship when they never cease to support and favour a rebel. They do not consider as a good friend one who is united with the enemy and who will not give him up. These sharp thorns, which are difficult to eradicate, offer obstacles to the best operation.
I know that the ambassador of Germany has been busily running round these last days. He saw the confessor several times and has since had various conferences with the earl of Sanduich. His object is to smoothe matters, and to suggest compromises and remedies for the difficulties. Up to the present I do not see that his efforts are succeeding, I only know that he was intending to send a courier to the emperor. The principal object was to inform that Court of the dangerous state to which the matter is subject. He communicated to the queen his resolution to give Cæsar a clear account of what is happening and of what else may crop up. He received her Majesty's approval and permission, but suddenly orders came to him to stop. It is believed that they may be waiting for the letters of Flanders for more definite information, or that something new may turn up to clear the sky for the negotiation, which is now troubled and confused when it was supposed to be settled.
Ambrun with profound sagacity holds his peace and watches. He rejoices that the negotiations are becoming so involved, and producing bitterness in the end instead of satisfaction. It is learned that the Baron Isola has received courteous words and distinguished partiality from the British king, at a secret audience. That he was still maintaining his incognito owing to the need for his equipment. With respect to his negotiations it appears that the House of Austria would rather be a party than a mediator.
Madrid, the 23rd February, 1667.
[Italian.]
Feb. 26.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
152. To the Resident at Florence.
Commend his efforts to hire four ships for war. He is to continue to devote all his care to this, as well with the help of the Resident of England to whom he is to express the public appreciation of his courteous offers to arrange for the hire of ships. They also give him power, if he comes across any powerful ship, such as he represents the Isabella to be, to make a moderate addition to the price, such as may seem to him proportionate to the quality of the craft. He is also to see that they leave promptly for Zante.
Ayes, 125. Noes, 0. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 The escorting squadron under Rear-Admiral John Kempthorne. It apparently consisted of the Defiance, Foresight, Cambridge, Fairfax, and Dunkirk. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1666–7, pp. 367, 437.
2 Sir James Wallace, the chief of the Scottish insurgents. Argyle was operating in Kintyre in Scotland, not in Ireland. Cal. S.P. Dom, 1666–7, p. 362. London Gazette, Dec. 24–27, 1666.
3 On the 19th Dec, o.s.,the Lords petitioned the king to appoint commissioners to take account of public moneys; on the 29th the king replied nominating commissioners. Shaw: Calendar of Treasury Books, Vol. ii, pp. xliv, xlv.
4 On the 27th Dec, o.s. According to Pepys it was in the Minories. Diary, Vol. vi, p. 116. Salvetti, writing on the 14th Jan., says that the explosion was due to the negligence of a servant and blew up four houses, all the inhabitants being injured and most of them killed. Brit. Mus. Add. MSS. 27962 S. f. 4d.
5 The London Gazette of Feb. 4–7, 1666–7, records the capture of the Prophet Elias of Bristol of 18 guns and 30 men, attacked when on the way to Lisbon by a French man-of-war of 35 guns; taken after a 6-hours' fight and carried into La Rochelle. See also C'al. S.F. Dom., 1666–7, p. 491.
6 Chaliot, now absorbed in the city.
7 No doubt referring to this squadron of Rear-Admiral Kempthorne. See note at page 123, above.