Venice: December 1609

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 11, 1607-1610. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1904.

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'Venice: December 1609', in Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 11, 1607-1610, (London, 1904) pp. 391-404. British History Online [accessed 20 April 2024]

December 1609

Dec. 1. Original Despatch. Venetian Archives. 724. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Spanish Ambassador last Sunday week begged his Majesty for restitution of the galleon captured by the fleet of Danziker and taken into Marseilles. He inveighed against Danziker and declared he ought to be punished. The King replied that he had granted a safe conduct to Danziker, who will soon be at Court. He held that he had rendered a service to Spain and other nations by clearing the sea of such a famous pirate.
Paris, the first of December, 1609.
Dec. 1. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives 725. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
On Monday morning the Prince of Condé took his wife into the Archduke's territory. (fn. 1) The King was informed the night of the same day and a council was summoned. M. de Praslin was despatched with letters begging the Archduke to hand over the Prince to the bearer. If he does not the King says he will go at the head of fifty thousand men to take him. The reason for the Prince's displeasure is jealousy of the King.
The Secretary of England told me that the English Ambassador (Winwood) to the two Princes (Brandenburg and Neuburg) has authority to pledge his Master to assist them.
Paris, the first of December, 1609.
Dec. 3. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 726. Marc' Antonio Correr, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The parties interested in the “Corsaletta” (Costley), which was seized by the Captain of the great galleys and taken to Canea, continue to claim damages to the amount of twenty thousand ducats. They have just obtained leave from the Admiralty to examine some witnesses on their losses. On Saturday notice was affixed at the usual places calling on all who had claims to appear in person three days hence. The Judge served a copy on me. I enclose a transcript. I thought it advisable to represent to Lord Salisbury the ingratitude of these merchants in return for your Serenity's singular act of grace. I said that not only might the ship have been justly confiscated because it had failed of its duty, and disobeyed the King's own orders, which were that ships should submit to search by the guard-ships of the Republic which were kept on the sea for the common benefit of traders, but more especially because smuggled currants had been found on board her; and yet your Serenity, to please the King, had ordered the restitution of the ship and her cargo, which, as I knew, had been carefully looked after. If they had suffered loss it was due to their own negligence. Further that, as your Serenity is a party to this suit, it cannot be in the competence of any particular Judge to hear it. The Earl replied that although he did remember something about the case, his memory was not sufficiently clear to allow him to discuss it. He promised to take information and to stay the Judge, so that I should be satisfied. Nevertheless sentence was pronounced next day in contumacy. I went back to Lord Salisbury and bitterly complained that the Judge had proceeded to the second stage in the suit; his Excellency said he too regretted the order that had been issued, that he had spoken to the Judge and the matter would be put right. All the same the English Ambassador in Venice said that a complaint had been lodged with your Serenity and that the merchants had some grounds. I replied in support of the rights of the Republic, but Lord Salisbury interrupted saying that as he was not fully informed he desired to talk the point over with the Judge. Meantime he confirmed his assurance that no further steps would be taken and added that the merchant Cordall, who was suing, was a very bold-natured fellow. I will take steps to have the act cancelled, as it is not admissible that a particular Judge should interfere where your Serenity's interests are concerned, nor yet should claim to summon me before him. I will report carefully.
London, 3rd December, 1609.
Dec. 3. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 727. Marc' Antonio Correr, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The Ambassadors of Brandenburg and Neuburg have had the King's assurance that he will not fail to assist their Masters to maintain their hold on the Duchy should occasion arise. They ask for a certain supply of money, and it would seem that they have gone away not quite content.
The Ambassador of Saxony has been informed that his Majesty was not aware of his Master's claims until now; that he finds them well founded, but being pledged to his two friends he cannot abandon them until the Ducal claims are approved by the Emperor, to whom they have been submitted. He holds it more advantageous for the Duke that these two States should remain in the hands of Brandenburg and Neuburg than that they should fall to the House of Austria.
I am informed from a sound quarter that his Majesty does really think the Duke of Saxony's claims very strong; all the same, although his Majesty is a relation of the Duke, it is not thought desirable here that Cleves and Juliers should come to him, for, as he is incapable of begetting progeny, on his death those States would lapse to the Empire.
The Saxon Ambassador is waiting his dismissal by the Queen and complains that this is delayed so long after the departure of the Ambassadors of Brandenburg and Neuburg for Holland, where the Ambassador desires to be present when they are negotiating.
Lolbrich the pirate, in command of three ships, attacked a French vessel with a cargo of fish, but she defended herself, opened fire, slew the pirate and got off free.
A certain Wissel, (fn. 2) a native of this Kingdom, has also gone privateering. He had very few men with him and an ordinary boat, but he captured a ship laden with wine, and with her he captured two others laden with sugar and fruit, coming from Spain. The pirates have their rendezvous in Ireland, where it is said there are fifteen ships of doubtful character. (fn. 3)
The Queen intends to retire to Greenwich on Monday until the King's return, in order that the Palace may be freshened up. Parliament is summoned for February and the Palace will then be very full. To-day when I went to take leave of the Queen she told me that the gout has again attacked the King, and he is at present more occupied in study than in the chase. The gout will bring him back to London a few days earlier than he intended.
The Earl of Salisbury has told me that he means to send his only son to Venice (fn. 4) shortly, but he does not intend him to go elsewhere in Italy. I thanked him for the good will he has always shown towards our City, and promised that his son would be made right welcome; and certain I am that any honours your Serenity may bestow on this youth will be well invested on account of his father's great weight.
London, 3rd December, 1609.
Dec. 3. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 728. Marc' Antonio Correr, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
On Saturday Sir Richard Preston came back for some answer to the King's offer to hand over to your Serenity John Gibbons the pirate. He pointed out the importance of the offer and said that he and a nephew of the Lord Chancellor of Scotland had ridden whole nights to effect the capture. The Ambassador returned thanks, begged that while discussing about the life of this fellow they should not neglect to recover the goods. He received a promise that Gibbons would again be examined as to whom he had consigned the wine. Meantime the Ambassador asks for instructions, without which he would not dare to say another word.
Last week there arrived from Bordeaux two Englishmen; one is a merchant, the other has been living with the Capuchins for some time. Each of them went separately to Lord Salisbury to warn him that the other had it in hand to poison the King. Both are in prison. It seems that the merchant confesses that he made proposals to the Capuchin in order to find out if he nourished any evil designs against this Crown. They say the poisoning was to be done by means of some preserves, and that the only object was to get some donative out of the King. (fn. 5)
At the recent assizes nineteen pirates have been condemned to death, among them three who were present at the capture of the “Reniera.” (fn. 6) The King wishes to extirpate them, but the avarice of those who support them and the interest of some great Minister (fn. 7) place obstacles in his way.
The Judges have hindered the conclusion of the suit for the plundered goods bought in Barbary. One of the deputation has informed me that the Judges are not in accord about certain defalcations. They wish to find out a way to compell immediate payment from the parties to the present suit as well as from the sureties who are in prison.
The governorship of Portsmouth (Polcemua), vacant by the death of Vere, has been given to the Earl of Pembroke. (fn. 8) This has confirmed the universal opinion of the great love his Majesty bears that gentleman, for many of the great Lords of the Court were aspirants to the post. (Il che ha confirmato l'opinione universale dell' amore, che sua Maestà porta a questo Signore, havendo havuti concorrenti a questa carica li principali Signori della corte.) The government of Brill has been conferred upon Colonel Horatio, brother of the deceased.
The Princess of Condé, who has been for many days at Brussels, for the reasons which your Serenity knows, (fn. 9) is received by the Archduchess with marks of extreme honour, she is made to sit under the baldacchino along with her Highness.
The Archdukes have published, under severest penalties, a decree expelling all mutinous troops and officers by the 15th of January.
A quarrel has arisen at the Flemish Court between the Count of Ostruta and the Marquis of San Marino, son-in-law of the Prince of Linghen. They both left for the frontier to fight a duel, and his Highness sent the Count of Bucquoy to stop it.
The King arrived yesterday; he is not quite free from pain in his foot. He professes to find Bellarmin's book quite modest, and much more so the Carmelite's (fn. 10) book published in France. All the same he desires the opinion of the Bishops on the point of religion.
London, 3rd December, 1609.
Dec. 3. Minutes of the Senate. Venetian Archives. 728A. That the Chevalier Contarini, Ambassador-Extraordinary in England, be instructed on the termination of his mission there to pass over to Holland to compliment the States.
Ayes 31.
Noes 2.
Neutrals 3.
That instead of sending Contarini, an Ambassador be elected at once.
Ayes 144.
Dec. 5. Minutes of the Senate, Rome. Venetian Archives. 729. To the Ambassador in Rome.
As the Ambassador has made a prudent answer to the Pontiff on the subject of the Ambassadors of the States and England, no need to give him further instructions.
Ayes 155.
Noes 2.
Neutral 5.
Dec. 7. Minutes of the Senate, Mar. Venetian Archives. 729A. That to please the English Ambassador, Piero Scordili of Zante, captain of the hired men (provisionati) in the galley “Loredana,” condemned to prison for life, be set at liberty and be free to go where he likes. He must go to the Ambassador's house to ask pardon for his act and to render thanks for the intercession.
Ayes 127.
Noes 1.
Neutrals 7.
Amendment moved by Piero Sagredo, Savio agli ordeni.
That if the English Ambassador should renew his request in favour of Scordili, his Serenity with his usual ability of expression shall reply that as the government itself has been insulted in the person of the Ambassador, whom they love, it is not desirable that sentence be so quickly cancelled; especially as the opportunity will occur later on to satisfy the Ambassador's request when the culprit has done a little more to satisfy justice.
Ayes 25.
Dec. 9. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 730. Francesco Contarini, Venetian Ambassador-Extraordinary to England, to the Doge and Senate.
Has taken twelve days from Turin. Has passed the Cenis well considering the season. Forced to rest one day at Chambery.
Eight days ago the Duke of Guise passed through Lyons towards Paris from his government of Provençe. He has with him that famous pirate Simon Danzer (Danziker) who has come to terms with his Majesty through the Duke, who has received a large donation from the pirate. (fn. 11) Danziker recently sold 60,000 crowns' worth of goods in Marseilles. Although it is being put about that he has nothing like the fortune he is credited with, still it is held for certain that he has quite 500,000 crowns' worth of property.
Lyons, 9 December, 1609.
Dec. 10. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 731. Marc' Antonio Corker, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
In the declaration of contumacy issued by the Admiralty Judge in the affair of the (Corsaletta) I found that not only were your Serenity's officers named, but myself in person, upon whom they maintained that notice had been served by the sealed document they left at my house. I first of all, through the mouth of Sir Julius Cæsar, called the Earl of Salisbury's attention to the contents of this document, and then finding myself with both of them in the presence of the Judge, I loudly complained that things had reached such a pitch. I insisted on the recall of the summons and the declaration. I then said that the Serene Republic was the only party to this suit, for the Captain of the great galleys had merely obeyed his orders, which were to seize all vessels that were either corsairs or guilty of hostile acts or carried contraband, and the “Corsaletta” was liable to seizure on more than one of these heads. To demand indemnification from a State that was spending so much on keeping the seas clear was quite an unusual act and of bad example. Two Powers so closely allied in affection should take care not to demand from each other what cannot be granted. I therefore begged for the revocation of the acts and invited those who had charge of the business to examine closely the merchants' claims, which, I was assured, would not bear looking into. I was told that this was the usual procedure of the Admiralty Court, adopted in the case of other Sovreigns, especially against the King of France. The Earl said that if his Most Christian Majesty should come to England he would be subject to the laws of the land, and that Ambassadors could not expect to be better treated than Sovreigns. Both Salisbury and Sir Julius were at great pains to uphold the prestige of the Judge. All the same they assured me that the act would be cancelled and everything done to give me satisfaction. I replied that Ambassadorial privileges were known to everyone; I did not admit the analogy of a Sovreign, who in another's territory would represent merely himself. I said I saw no grounds for dispute, for they acknowledged my right by acts of a nature to command my thanks. After much further talk they assured me the witnesses would not be examined until the matter had been further discussed. The Earl declared that the sole object of the trial was to convince your Serenity that the vessel had been unjustly seized to the grave injury of the merchants. I took great pains to expose the lies and errors of the merchants. The fact that the vessel had offered fight proved that she had not obeyed the King's orders. To open fire on the galleys merited punishment. To have contraband currants was undoubtedly an affair of the fisc. The commanders of the galleys had good reason to complain that this favour shown to the English had robbed them of the profit that was due to them by law. I concluded by insisting that this was an affair that could not succeed.
Secretary Herbert having come back to-day the Commission on the other suit about the “Reniera” met and informed me that they would come to discuss the matter with me one of these days. Those who have had sentence against them are endeavouring to be excused from paying dues and freights; out of pure courtesy I promised to intervene to get them some relief, but finding that their pretensions reached almost the half, I dismissed them. The more they claim the less will they get.
Foreign merchants are harassed by an ancient tithe on imported wine up to forty tons per ship. All above is free. I have, at the instance of the Venetians, in accord with other envoys, attempted to secure that this ancient duty be not enforced. Our nation is indeed reduced in this Kingdom. There is only one merchant firm trading here. From what Lord Salisbury said to me, this attempt to reimpose the tax will not be permitted.
I am expecting hourly news of Contarini's arrival in Paris.
London, 10th December, 1609.
Enclosed in preceding despatch. 732. Carolus Comes Nottingham et Guglielmus Pope, Mariscallo nostro, eiusque legitimo deputato cuicunque salutem.
Thomas Cordall, merchant of London City, has exhibited statement of damage to the amount of five thousand English pounds at the hands of the officers of the Republic of Venice. The ship called the “Corsaletta,” of the port of London, on her return journey to England, was, in the month of May, 1607, attacked, captured, and taken into Candia.
As his witnesses are some of them old, others sailors likely to sail soon for. distant parts, he begs that their evidence may be taken before the Supreme Admiralty Court. They are hereby summoned to appear before Dr. Richard Trever, at the undernamed office, within three days of the serving of this notice.
London, 13th November, 1609.
Enclosed in preceding despatch. 733. Notice served on the Venetian Ambassador that Cordall's witnesses are to be examined on Tuesday next, the 21st November, at the usual Court in Southwark, and inviting the Ambassador to attend, or to be represented.
16th November, 1609.
Dec. 10. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 734. Marc' Antonio Correr, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The same gentleman (Le Sieur) who was in Tuscany about the English ships that were taken by the Florentine galleons, will be sent to return Salviati's Embassy which announced the death of the late Grand Duke and the accession of the present. Salviati is little pleased at this appointment, as le Sieur gave small satisfaction on his last mission; he used expressions that provoked a sharp reply, and moreover refused the Grand Duke's present, which caused Malaspina, who came here to announce the present Grand Duke's marriage, to leave also without a present. This appointment was to be expected, for here they usually support their Envoys. When the King announced his intention of sending a return Embassy the Secretary begged him to send an able personage, but could not make him change his mind.
The vessels destined for the Levant are on the point of sailing; they are very well armed, six in number, and will not be accompanied by any of the Royal ships, though two are to follow them and join them after they have discharged their cargo, when they will all go privateering. But this rumour is not credited. The Florentines say it is put about in order to frighten the Grand Duke and to induce him to restore ships and goods.
Bishop (Bissic) was proclaimed archpirate and placed under heavy penalties. Bishop with a couple of ships met a Royal ship of five hundred tons, Captain St. John, (fn. 12) attacked and captured her, killing St. John, but he did not keep her more than a few hours. It is not known whether he was aggressor or attacked.
The Secretary of France makes daily claim for the restitution of French goods found in possession of pirates made prisoners. So far he has obtained nothing. He has made strong representations on the subject of a fine on some French merchants who had brought over and sold here some wine. The Lord High Admiral went a little too far, declaring he did not care a rap for him or his King; the Secretary withdrew without replying and laid the matter before the Earl of Salisbury. The High Admiral, however, did not intend to leave the Secretary with this bitterness and sent him very civil messages and promises to give him satistaction. On the other hand the Lords of Council make representations to the Secretary that many English merchants damaged by Danziker, who has withdrawn to Marseilles, should be indemnified out of the property he has brought with him.
The son of Lord Salisbury has sent a messenger express from Paris with a book which he discovered there. It attacks the King, and is printed under the name of Master William, buffoon of his Most Christian Majesty. It is full of scandals about the King and Queen, nor does it spare the King of Spain. The Earl of Salisbury at once sent over to France to have the book suppressed; he has also besought the French Secretary to write in the same sense. All the ports are warned to see that the book does not come into this Kingdom.
The Saxon Ambassador after taking leave of the Queen was presented with a diamond set in a ring. In this he has the advantage of all the Ambassadors who have come here on the matter of Cleves, for they have been treated after the fashion adopted by his Most Christian Majesty. The Saxon Ambassador has left for Flanders and they are here awaiting the Count Mansfeldt, who, after taking leave of the French Court, ought to come here also in the interests of Saxony.
London, 10th December, 1609.
Dec. 12. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 735. Simon Contarini, Venetian Ambassador in Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
Arrival of the Capudan Pasha with five captured galleons, and five hundred and twenty Christian slaves, including nine knights of Malta.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, 12th December, 1609
[Italian; deciphered.]
Dec. 14. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 736. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
A long account of the Prince of Conde's flight.
Paris, 14th December, 1639.
Dec. 16. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 737. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Danziker (Danzer) has arrived in company with the Duke of Guise.
Paris, 16th December, 1609.
Dec. 17. Minutes of the Senate. Terra. Venetian Archives. 737A. That Girolamo Soranzo, Ambassador to his Catholic Majesty, having finished his two years' service, be relieved by the election of a successor.
Ayes 129.
Noes 5.
Neutrals 7.
Dec. 17. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 738. Marc' Antonio Correr, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The summons and sentence in contumacy in the suit of Thomas Cordall, of the “ Corsaletta,” have been entirely annulled, as I am assured. I think it must be so, for a search among the papers of the office failed to reveal them. Cordall came to my house on instructions from the Council and laid bare his grievances. Out of regard for the Lords of the Council I received him with courtesy. I said I imagined that his losses were considerable and that I was extremely sorry, but he must lay the blame on his own agents and sailors. As to his claims for expenses, damages, and loss of time, I said it was all labour lost. Sovreigns, not even in acts of justice, much less in acts of grace, never reimburse for loss of time and expenses. I advised him to take counsel of persons versed in affairs of State and to abandon his ideas. As to the missing goods, which I gathered from his words were of small moment, I said that if he would give me a list of them I would forward it to your Serenity and would do what I could in his service, but that I thought he would have some difficulty in presenting a list, as I knew that great care had been employed in the matter. I endeavoured to demonstrate to him that the Captain of the great galleys has nothing to do with the case. He says he is suing the Captain, not the Republic. I showed him that, in obedience to his orders, his Excellency would have been in his rights if he had retained the ship both on account of her hostile acts towards the galleys and because of the smuggled currants on board. I pledged him to inform the Earl of Salisbury and the other Lords of the Council of my readiness in all that was not manifestly unjust. Cordall left very much embarassed, and I hope he won't press any further in this matter. The Committee on the case of the “ Reniera and Soderina,” came to see me yesterday, and, after some talk about the evidence of certain English that some of the cargo was bought and embarked on board the ship “Husband” (Usban) before the “Soderina” arrived at Tunis, they proposed a compromise suggesting half costs. I took pains to analyse this evidence, and believing that I had convinced them I held on to the settlement of the question by law. We were agreed that I was to put in a note of my arguments and of the evidence which has been omitted from the summary of the trial. They left me with the hope of a favourable issue, but as these merchants are very acute I do not promise myself with any certainty.
On Sunday Le Sieur's commission was discussed. He is going as Ambassador to Florence. The Florentine Resident, after spreading a report among the merchants interested in the ships seized by the Tuscan galleys, to the effect that Le Sieur would not be well received and might injure the negotiations, has now asked for an interview with the Earl of Salisbury. The Resident is also deeply mortified that the acts relating to the “Corsaletta” have been cancelled, while those relating to the ships seized by the Florentines are still active.
The Prince of Wales has arrived in London to arrange for a tourney, which he intends to give in February. It will be the first time he has appeared in public in the lists. He found some difficulty in obtaining the King's consent, but his Majesty did not wish to cross him. At the next meeting of Parliament which is summoned for the 9th of February next, they intend to confer on him, with all the ancient ceremony, the Principality of Wales which he greatly desires. They are now creating a Court of Judges, officers, and other officials who will be required, and they are arranging the extensive ceremonial which is usual on such occasions. There will be a large creation of Knights, Earls and Barons. In virtue of this title the Prince will enjoy the revenues of the Principality and will have a seat in the Council of State.
The Earl of Salisbury has received a copy of Cardinal Bellarmin's reply to his Majesty's book, and sent it on at once to Royston. These Ministers do not care to talk about the matter; they wished that it could have been avoided. I have not had time yet to learn how it is received by the King.
The plague has almost disappeared in this cold, dry weather.
I have no news from Ambassador Contarini, but they say he has been seen in Paris.
London, 17th December, 1609.
Dec. 18. Collegio Secreta, Esposizioni Roma. Venetian Archives. 739. The Nuncio complains that a priest (fn. 13) has been condemned to death without the presence of the Patriarch's Vicar at the trial. The reply was that he had been guilty of a very serious crime in appropriating religious funds.
Dec. 19. Minutes of the Senate, Roma. Venetian Archives. 740. To the Ambassador in Rome.
Sending information about a priest who was executed that morning by order of the Ten.
Ayes 153.
Noes 0.
Neutrals 12.
Dec. 19. Minutes of the Senate, Terra. Venetian Archives. 741. That Piero Priuli, elected Ambassador to his Catholic Majesty, may sit in the Senate, without a vote, till his departure in order that he may be well-informed on current affairs.
Ayes 148.
Noes 0.
Neutrals 12.
Dec. 22. Minutes of the Senate, Venetian Archives. 742. To the Ambassador in Rome.
Announcing arrival of Vandermyle, Ambassador of the States, and the election of Tomaso Mocenigo as Ambassador to the States.
Same to England and the other Courts.
Ayes 158.
Noes 1.
Neutrals 1.
Dec. 24. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 743. Marc' Antonio Correr, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The Lords of Council, having heard from the merchants under judgement in the case of the “Reniera and Soderina,” that it is unfair that they should lose besides the capital also the costs of customs, warehousing and hire, sent the case with a recommendation to the Admiralty Judge. I on the one hand insist that the Judge has no power to change the sentence, but on the other I desire to avoid the hatred of this nation and to adjust myself to what I perceive to be the universal wish. I have let it be understood, with the consent of the agents in the suit, that as I told them when they came to me I was ready to give them the customs dues so I would, if they acknowledged it as from Venetians, remit all the expenses incurred after the arrival of the goods in London, but if they want more that would mean their getting the whole. The English demand a sentence; they claim in place of hire all the expenses of the ship both on her outward and homeward journey, which amounts to about half the debt.
To-day the Commissioners in the other suit have heard Counsel on both sides at great length. Sentence is deferred to some day next week. It is to be hoped from the attitude of the Judges that it will be favourable to the subjects of your Serenity. They have even declared that they will find a way to make the sureties in prison pay their debt.
Preston (Sir Richard) dined here on Sunday and asked me if I had anything to say to him as to the offer the King had made to hand over John Gibbons. I excused the delay on the score of your Serenity's manifold occupations; meantime, I begged that Gibbons might be examined with a view to finding out what had been done with the wine, so as to recover something. He replied that they would have sent him to me to examine, such was the King's intent, but as I showed that I desired a different proceeding he had undertaken to do so himself. Time is slipping by, and I fear that when they come to recovery little will be found.
Acknowledges receipt of letters of the 16th of last month. Thanks for expressions of approval. No word of Contarini.
London, 24th December, 1609.
Dec. 24. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 744. Marc' Antonio Correr, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The Secretaries of Brabant and the Treasurer of Antwerp went to the Hague with the Treasurer Robiano and there they proposed the conclusion of peace. This is really desired by Government of the United Provinces in order to allow them to consolidate, but they hide their desire as far as possible so as to get the better conditions, which they think will be rather different from those of the truce. They have already informed Lord Salisbury, in the absence of the King, about these negotiations, and they have done the same in France, as they are bound to these Crowns not to negotiate without their participation. As I understand there will be no difficulty in obtaining his Majesty's assent. They are pressing more earnestly for free transmit for Antwerp, but they will not easily succeed.
In reply to the question as to aid from the United Provinces for Brandenburg and Neuburg, the States declare that they will be ready at the moment, provided the Kings of France and Great Britain are. The King of England is pledged to employ his forces to resist any attempt to take Cleves from Brandenburg and Neuburg before their claims have been duly decided.
It is publicly said that the Dutch will disband twenty-one companies of English, but it is not confirmed, indeed they have re-engaged all the weeded companies and fixed them at the number of one hundred men for each company. There is in fact no change of moment. This rumour arose from the necessity of reducing the expenses owing to the failure of the French contribution, except that part of it destined to pay four thousand French troops, who, however, receive their pay directly from the Dutch.
The Prince is training to run the lists (fn. 14) (combatter una bariera) on Epiphany. He will be the challenger (mantenitore) backed by five comrades, three English who are the Earl of Arundel, the Earl of Southampton and Sir Thomas Somerset, and two Scotch the Duke of Lennox and Sir Richard Preston. The Venturers are to be about forty in number. The Council has issued orders to them all to be in readiness and nothing is done in the matter without the deliberation of that body.
On Tuesday last the Queen arrived and on Wednesday next the King should be here. Cardinal Bellarmin's book is not to be found here publicly and it is not likely that the King will allow it to be published, though it is considered very moderate.
Another book has appeared in Paris. It is written, as the French Secretary tells me, by a Carmelite (Coeffeteau), and is issued by licence of his Most Christian Majesty. In terms of perfect moderation it replies to all the points of religion raised in his Majesty's book.
London, 24th December, 1609.
Dec. 26. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 745. Giovanni Mocenigo, Venetian Ambassador in Rome, to the Doge and Senate.
Complaints that in the trial and execution of the priest the Patriarch's Vicar had not been called upon to take a part.
Rome, 26th December, 1609.
Dec. 26. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 746. Giovanni Mocenigo, Venetian Ambassador in Rome, to the Doge and Senate.
Arrival of an agent from Archduke Leopold about Cleves.
Dec. 28. Minutes of the Senate. Mar. Venetian Archives. 747. Regulations for the fleets sailing to Syria, Alexandria and Constantinople. In view of the danger from pirates they are to sail all together (per la muda (fn. 15) ) in the months of March and August. No Venetian ship and no foreign ship with Venetian goods on board may sail at any other time under penalty of 500 ducats.
Other regulations as to election of officials and state of artillery.
Dec. 30. Senato Secreta. Despatches from Milan. Venetian Archives. 748. Giovanni Francesco Marchesini, Venetian President in Milan, to the Doge and Senate.
An Italian who is well versed in affairs said, a few days ago, that news had come from France that a league was concluded between France, England, the States and Savoy.
Milan, 30th December, 1609.


  • 1. See Winwood, Memorials III. 93. Sully, Memories. Londres. 1752. VII. 254 et seq. Condé carried his wife off from Moret. Henri sent first Praslin then Bouteville and then de Cœuvre to try to bring the Prince and Princess back.
  • 2. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1603–1610. p. 480. A certain Henry Antonison Wissell petitions the King.
  • 3. Cal. S.P. Dom., Dec. 7, 1609. Earl of Northampton to Sir T. Lake. Complains of the neglect of the Lord Admiral in suppression of piracy.
  • 4. William, Lord Cranborne. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1610, 22 Sept. From Paris Capt. William Turner wrote to Salisbury telling him of overtures made by the Nuncio to Turner for the decoying of Lord Cranborne into the States of the Church and his capture there, to be held till exchanged for Baldwin, the Jesuit. On Nov. 17, 1610, Cranborne writes from Venice. On Nov. 23 Dudley Carleton saw him in Padua. He was ill with threatening of ague. On Dec. 14? Dr. Mathew Lister writes from Padua that Lord Cranborne's sickness lingers on. Has written truly, but hopefully, about it to Salisbury. He was still in danger on Dec. 21st and very anxious to get home. On Dec. 28th Dudley Carleton visited him at Padua; found him better, but resolved to go home. He declined the Grand Duke's offer of facilities for a journey to Florence. He was back in London by May 8, 1611.
  • 5. Cal. S.P. Dom., Dec. 3, 1609. Sir William Godolphin to Salisbury. Sends up John Gardner, lately come from Bordeaux to discover a treasonable plot against the King. In examination, Gardner declared that he had lived ten years abroad for the sake of his religion. At Bordeaux he had met James Conway, who tempted him to enter into a conspiracy, but he refused. In November of this year William Lucas had reported to Salisbury about both Gardner and Conway.
  • 6. Dec. 8. Cal. S.P. Dom. The King orders the reprieve of Jennings and Harris in hopes of further confessions.
  • 7. Earl of Northampton to Lake. “Earnestly requests permission to reprieve” condemned pirates.
  • 8. Pembroke was appointed before Oct. 23rd. See Cal. S.P. Dom. under that date.
  • 9. Her husband had taken her there to escape the attentions of Henry IV.
  • 10. See Winwood, Memorials III. p. 117. “One Coeffeteau, a French Fryer, preacher to the King, hath answered our King's Book very moderately and modestly they say.”
  • 11. See Birch. Life of Henry Prince of Wales, p. 179.
  • 12. Sir William St. John, Captain of the “ Advantage.” See Cal. S.P. Ireland, 1608–1610, p. 331. Also S.P. Dom. 1603–1610, pp. 525, 586.
  • 13. He was Prè Christoforo Perugino of Monterchio in Tuscany; accomplice in the assasination of Don Vittorio Baroni, Canon of S. Giorgio in Alega.
  • 14. Cal. S. P. Dom., 11th Dec. “Warrant to issue to Inigo Jones and others, the necessary sums for the Prince's exercises at the barriers.”
  • 15. Muda, that number of trading ships which sailed, all together for safety, twice a year from Venice to the Levant.