Venice: July 1613

Pages 1-17

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 13, 1613-1615. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1907.

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July 1613

1613. July 5. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives. 1. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
I have received your letters of the 14th ult., in accordance with which I have at once written to my agent at the Hague to ask for complete information of the Count John of Nassau, of his father and his fortune and what has induced him to go to Rome, with any other matters which may prove useful to help you to come to a decision, and you shall be immediately informed of all that comes to hand. But I will tell you what I have already found out. He has brothers, the eldest is Count John Ernest, whom I know very well, and he was here with Count Henry. One sister was married to the landgrave of Hesse (Hassia) and the others to some of the chief princes of Germany. The father is alive and styles himself Count John. (fn. 1) His first wife was a sister of the Prince of Osten, (fn. 2) and he is brother of the Count William the elder, who married a princess of Orange, but has no children. The dowager Electress Palatine is of kin to the said father, and so are the princes of Orange, Count Maurice and the Count of Olal, (fn. 3) and those of Solmes are very near relations. I do not think that his fortune can be considerable, as he is not an eldest son. He has a command of cavalry and served the United Provinces for some time. I believe he was previously with the emperor, and also, it is said, with the Archduke Albert, but he is not yet thirty years old. He has always been well affected towards the Catholic religion, and now he has declared himself for it. These circumstances convince me that he will be able to raise troops.
From London, 5 July, 1613.
July 5. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives. 2. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
On Saturday last, the 29th ult., the ambassador of Savoy presented to the queen the gifts of the duke his master; on the following day he took leave of their Majesties and returned immediately to the city to perform the same office to the ambassador of Spain, who returned his visit, and to-day he has set off home. His duties were firstly to offer condolences for the death of the prince and congratulations on the marriage of the princess. On his arrival there came news that the duke had broken into Montferrat, and at an audience which was immediately accorded to him, he gave the reasons which he thought had moved the duke. He touched somewhat upon the question of the marriage, letting it be understood that the duke offered carte blanche, without entering into details. He has certainly not formally asked for help, but has only expressed the hope that the king would be able to assist the duke with his favour. The king replied that he would not fail with advice or in procuring peace. After the first duties, the ambassador expressed his desire for peace as I have reported, and replied that he had himself written to France to that end, as the king told me he had done, and the reply ought to come soon.
The day before yesterday Lucnor, (fn. 4) master of the ceremonies, called upon me, principally, he said, to acquaint me with the esteem of the said ambassador for me, but that considering what had passed he was afraid that he might not be received if he came himself. I made a suitable reply to his expression of esteem, and said that with regard to his visit he had decided rightly, for under the circumstances I should not have been able to receive him. The master of the ceremonies then said that he had not been expressly ordered to come, but that the ambassador had spoken with great regard for me, to which I made no reply.
Yesterday the ambassador took leave of the ambassador of the archduke. The letters which he takes back from the king contain thanks for the condolences and congratulations and exhortations for peace, and, as I am informed, nothing more, and the ambassador will be obliged to speak of the marriage by word of mouth, to which he will be little disposed.
He has received from the king a quantity of gilt vessels as a gift, and from the queen a diamond worth 1,000 crowns. He has been several times with the ambassador of Spain, who has always returned his visits, their intercourse being marked by every appearance of cordiality. The Spanish ambassador, however, declares that his king will insist upon the restitution to Mantua of the territory occupied by the duke.
The king has received in a letter from his ambassador in Spain a copy of the order, sent by His Catholic Majesty to the governor of Milan, by which he directs the restitution; the same copy sent to the Most Christian Queen is here in the hands of her ambassador.
Gabaleone remains, as I wrote that he would, and holds special instructions for the marriage and proposals for alliance, and upon this the duke has communicated nothing to the ambassador. The ambassador of France informed me that Gabaleone will achieve something in the matter of the marriage, but this I will neither believe nor write until I have better knowledge.
From London, the 5 July, 1613.
July 6. Senate, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra, Venetian Archives. 3. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Yesterday morning the king received positive information from his ambassador in France that the differences between Savoy and Mantua were on the high road to a final settlement. I will give details below. So far as I can discover, this is in reply to the orders given by the king to his ambassador to discover the queen's mind, but to-morrow I shall know all from one who is informed, and I will then write to your Serenity.
Yesterday the king said that the duke of Savoy was a fortunate prince, for while every one seemed against him, he has found friends again, if not for war at least for peace, that he had hope in your Serenity, but he could not have given help except by advice for peace, never having encouraged an unjust cause. The governor of Milan wrote to the Most Christian Queen in a letter of the 18th ult. that the Marquis of Castiglione and he have brought things into a good condition, that the Count Crivelli by virtue of a letter of the duke of Savoy, dated at Asti on the 12th, had bound himself entirely to place Castiglione in his hands with all that has been occupied, and would do no more harm. The queen received the letter on the 29th, to which she wrote the letter of which I enclose a copy with a translation. At the same time she wrote to the duke of Mantua to know his will. The ambassador of France here professes to believe that Mantua cannot and will not consent.
I know that I am writing of things which are for the most part under your eyes, but I do so for two reasons, one, that the king's intentions may be known, and the other, that by sending a copy of the very letter written by the queen of France to the governor of Milan, which you may not have seen, you may be able to take such steps as seem necessary in the interests of peace.
From London, 6 July, 1613.
Enclosed in the preceding Despatch. 4. Copy of letter written by the Queen of France to the Marquis of Ynososa.
Monsieur le Marquis de la Ynososa, the war of Montferrat has lasted longer than your letters led us to expect. I understand by yours of the 18th inst. and from those of the duke of Savoy which you sent to me, that the pope has intervened as well as the emperor and the king of Spain. But no mention is made of the satisfaction which ought to be given to the duke of Mantua. I write now for information upon this point, and I shall always use my influence with the king, my son, for the maintenance of peace, especially between the two princes.
Dated on 20 June.
Enclosed in the preceding Despatch. 5. Translation of the above.
July 6. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Costantin. Venetian Archives. 6. Cristoforo Valier, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
News has reached me from the consul of Aleppo that the pasha there is compelling French and English merchants to pay two per cent. on foreign money brought there by their ships, and 2½ per cent on the finery and woven goods taken out by them, and if he has not hitherto made the like attempt against us it is certain that he will do so at the very earliest opportunity.
The ambassadors of France and England hearing of this, have asked me to join them in remonstrating upon this with the Grand Vizier, hoping that the matter will be rendered more easy by common action.
However I thought it would prejudice the affair to act together, and resolved to treat alone in the interests of your Serenity, especially since the ambassador of France declared that he would give the Grand Pasha 3,000 taleri to be free of this impost, as it would be necessary for me to share in this expense.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, the 6 July, 1613.
[Italian; deciphered.]
July 9. Collegio, Lettere. Venetian Archives. 7. Letters patent notifying the engagement of Prince Luigi d'Este in the service of the republic, with the terms of his engagement.
Ayes 21.
Noes 0.
Neutral 0.
July 10. Consiglio X, Parti Communi. Venetian Archives. 8. Licence to Gregorio Barbarigo to admit the ambassador of the king of Great Britain to his house to see the regatta.
Ayes 15.
Noes 0.
Neutral 1.
July 10. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives. 9. Zorzi Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Some days ago the Duke of Lennox was here. He has come from Heidelberg, whither he accompanied the Princess of England. He has taken this route on his return, by order of his king, in order to assure Her Majesty of his master's cordial friendship. These words he expressed in his first audience. After this he has commission to approach the queen and government upon the question, already broached, of the marriage between their prince and the second princess, and to proceed in conformity with the reception accorded to the proposal.
He, the ordinary ambassador, and the Duke of Bouillon (Buglion) have been in conference the whole day, the last named being the one who has already moved in the matter, discussing the proposal, the king having instructed Lennox to proceed cautiously (ponderatamente). To-morrow morning he is to see Villeroi. I am to dine with him afterwards, and I promise you that I will seize the opportunity.
As I have advised at other times, the feeling here is favourable, as age and interests are in harmony and it is hoped that such an alliance will quiet the minds of many, especially of the Huguenots, and adjust many things which appear ill balanced by this alliance of Spain. Nevertheless there are those who, under various pretexts, persuade the queen to delay matters until the marriages with Spain have been completed, and who endeavour in various ways to prevent this union.
Don Inico (fn. 5) is not here, but he is expected soon, and in the meantime others are at work in his place. The Prince of Condé is actively pressing on the affair and in this the Duke of Guise is at one with him, owing to the connection of his house with England.
The Duke of Lennox intends to request for himself the company of men at arms which the kings of France have in their pay by ancient conventions. The prince of England will renounce it and Lennox has good reason to hope for success as he is the principal subject of that kingdom, but as it has as a rule been conferred only on those in the line of succession to the crown of Scotland, there will be difficulties.
From Paris, the 10 July, 1613.
July 10. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives. 10. Zorzi Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The count John of Nassau is nephew of Count Maurice. He has two brothers, one, Count William, lieutenant-general of Count Maurice, the other Count Ernest, a field-marshal and a soldier of great reputation. The elder has a regiment of infantry and a company of horse. Their house has many adherents in Germany, England, Flanders and France.
He is an experienced soldier, having fought continuously under Count Maurice in those wars which have been the true school of soldiers. He is a linguist and knows Italian well. He now has a regiment of 400 horse and the States give him an extraordinary pension of 2,000 crowns. His private fortune is not great but respectable.
The house of Nassau has good relations with the Swiss and the Grisons, through whose territory they can send their troops. His men are practised in war and under good discipline.
He is a serious man, cautious in speech, and will promise nothing that he will not perform.
I am told that he was induced to go to Rome out of curiosity. In Holland he professed to be a Catholic.
From Paris, the 10 July, 1613.
July 12. Senato, Mar. Venetian Archives. 11. That honour befitting his rank be bestowed upon Prince Luigi d'Este.
That the officials of the Razon Vecchie have authority to spend 200 ducats upon entertainment to be offered either at once or on several occasions to the prince.
Ayes 103.
Noes 15.
Neutral 6.
July 12. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives. 12. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The king has received information from his ambassador in France that the differences between Savoy and Mantua are on the way to a settlement, as I wrote, and His Majesty has received the same news from his agent in Turin. But his ambassador at Venice maintains his former attitude, so that the king's judgment is in suspense. I have discussed the matter with Sir Henry Wotton and another.
On Saturday evening an extraordinary courier arrived from the ambassador in Spain with news that the Prince of Piedmont, by command of the king, had stopped some way off without proceeding to the court, thus showing a disposition in favour of peace, yet he has sent letters to His Catholic Majesty.
On Sunday Gabaleone received letters from Turin and has since given out that the duke is withdrawing his men from the places occupied from Mantua, which the king now believes. Yet, as I understand on good authority, the Marquis of Castiglione and the governor of Milan are for having the places restored to Mantua after being placed in their hands by Savoy. The daughter is apparently to remain with the mother with what pertains to her, but the difficulty is to know whether Mantua will consent.
The day before yesterday I called on the Ambassador of Spain. He said that as regards the Prince of Piedmont it is true that the king had not wished him to go forward before everything was arranged, that the emperor and his king are at one, because one possesses the authority to command, and the other has a force in Italy to require that the daughter shall be restored to the mother, as she is in peril of her life so long as she remains in her uncle's hands. The Duke of Mantua ought to have her at Aire or send both to Modena as he promised. Savoy had some cause to take alarm, and but for his past action he would have had assistance. His instability had been to his prejudice. He had taken upon himself to avenge the insult which he conceived that he had received from Mantua, an inferior prince, and thereby he has raised his family and perhaps Savoy, and depressed the other. I asked him if the mother will be allowed to marry the daughter without others having a share in it. He answered, yes, with the advice of the grandfather only and of whom she pleases. That Mantua has nothing to do with it and that beyond a doubt the moveables, jewels and allodial goods, which amount to two millions, pertain to her. In the course of the conversation, and more temperately, he said that the Cardinal Duke would have been well advised to marry the cognate, who was a known patron of the house and fertile, but he will take some one from Tuscany, because their minds are now aroused, and the Grand Duke has gained by sending assistance and by showing readiness.
The courier sent by the ambassador in Spain brings word of the differences about the consuls of Seville, of Portugal and affairs of merchants, having received promises in all the matters.
The earl of Northampton and others have impressed upon me that the promise made by the king to me not to allow any more people to set out from here in favour of Savoy and the ordinance in conformity have been greater than appears, because when he made peace with Spain he declared that he left to his subjects their natural liberty to serve whom they pleased in war; that in the war in Flanders some sided with the States, but some with Spain, although in smaller numbers; that in the struggle between Denmark and Sweden, the greater number were with Denmark but some had entered the service of Sweden, although the king had shown himself much more inclined to the one side than to the other; that the king's subjects are for the most part ruled by his desires, but that he has never made a formal promise and ordinance as he has done to please your Excellencies in this matter, in which he has gone further than for the king of Denmark, the brother of his queen, with whom he is so nearly allied.
From London on 12 July, 1613.
July 12. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives. 13. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
On Monday last in audience of the Queen at Greenwich, I expressed my delight at seeing her in good health, saying that the Bath waters had enabled her to return. She assented and said that it should have been immediately after the king had set out on his progress. She spoke with great animation of the journey, of the beauty of that country, and of the great number of gentlemen who were always ready to serve her, also of the properties of the waters.
She afterwards spoke of the ambassador of Savoy, who has shown a great desire to marry one of the Infanti to the prince. I asked Her Majesty if the ambassador had spoken to her about it. She replied that the ambassador had expressed his earnest desire to her, she had replied that there was not conformity of age, he added that the Infanta was not more than fifteen, but she knew that she was eighteen on the death of her mother, so that she is at least nineteen now, and the prince is barely thirteen.
I referred to the desire expressed by the king with regard to the good understanding between the King of Denmark her brother and your Excellencies. She said pointedly that she will consider all expressions of esteem towards him as if they were intended for herself, that Spain had sent twice to him, adding that it would be well if the republic would send to him. She seemed eager for this. I declared that you valued that king very highly, both for his own worth and for the readiness to favour them which he had already shown, but most of all because he is the queen's brother, and that I had written to your Serenity as the king had commanded me. The queen said in a low voice that the ambassador had also touched upon some similar matter, expressing a wish to know what would be done. She enquired after the health of your Serenity, asking me to kiss your hand for her, an expression I have never previously heard from a royal mouth, except one other time from her.
She afterwards went on to discuss other matters, and having seen the secretary she spoke to me in his praise. He has acquired the favour of many gentlemen and certainly serves to my entire satisfaction. After an hour's audience, I again kissed Her Majesty's hand and took leave.
From London, 12 July, 1613.
July 13. Collegio, Ceremoniali, Venetian Archives. 14. Ceremonial leave taking of Prince Luigi d'Este.
July 13. Senato, Secreta, Dispacci, Roma. Venetian Archives. 15. Tomaso Contarini, Venetian Ambassador at Rome, to the Doge and Senate.
The count of Nassau exhibits a great desire to serve the republic. His salary comprises what the States pay him and the provision of 2,500 thalers made to him by the emperor as his colonel. The emperor has sent him the gold key, inviting him to the Imperial diet and offering important employment. He told me he proposed to go to Padua, and will proceed to Venice if he hears from your Serenity. He would be glad to have with him his agent Lucio, who knows the country and the language and who asks for a more positive assurance of his safety.
From Rome, the 6 July, 1613.
July 13. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Roma. Venetian Archives. 16. Tomaso Contarini, Venetian Ambassador at Rome, to the Doge and Senate.
The count of Nassau took leave of me on Wednesday and started for Padua the same night. He again asked me to request that the rectors of that city may be instructed to inform him of what has been decided concerning his command and the safety of his agent Lucio. If he is not wanted at present, he will go on to the Imperial diet.
From Rome, the 13 July, 1613.
July 13. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Milano. Venetian Archives. 17. Andrea Surian, Venetian Resident at Milan, to the Doge and Senate.
I hear on good authority that the duke of Savoy proposes to arm five English vessels at Nice in Provence and Villafranca, manning them with Huguenots or other heretics. His purpose is to send them raiding (di mandarli in corso), but he may have more extensive designs.
From Milan, the 14 July, 1613.
July 13. Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni. Venetian Archives. 18. To the Ambassador in England.
With respect to the affairs of Savoy the king has exhibited a very friendly disposition towards the republic, whose efforts seem to have removed from his mind the distrust he had conceived, which led him to feign to take steps in favour of Savoy and to the prejudice of the republic. You must not neglect what we wrote to you on the 25th May, when a favourable opportunity occurs.
To continue the confidence with the king, inform him that the affairs of Montferrat have taken a turn favourable to peace, as all the places occupied have been restored to the Duke of Mantua by means of the emperor and king of Spain, acting together, without any conditions. Three points remain to be settled, the claims of those who suffered damage, the disarming and the rebels, but it is hoped that all will be arranged, as the duke of Mantua has agreed that claims for damage shall be settled by civil law, the disarming of the parties shall take place simultaneously and the fate of the rebels shall be decided by justice. Still the difficulties of the affair give occasion for reserve in predicting the issue, because the governor of Milan remains armed and, in consequence, so doth other princes of Italy. Even if His Majesty, as is probable, is informed of these matters from other sources, we think it right that he should also have the information from us, as a sign of our friendship, and especially because of the great interest which he takes in our affairs.
The same advices have been communicated to the ambassador of His Majesty resident here, by one of the secretaries of this council.
Ayes 148.
Noes 1.
Neutral 3.
July 13. Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni. Venetian Archives. 19. To the Ambassador at Rome.
Inform the count of Nassau, or his agent, if he has gone, that the republic has at present no occasion for his services, but will always remember his readiness to offer himself, to make use of it at another time, as they think highly of his great qualities. Inform Antonio Lucio, his agent, more clearly that he may always come to this city safely, where he will receive no harm on public accounts.
Ayes 150.
Noes 0.
Neutral 6.
July 15. Collegio, Secreta. Esposizioni Principi Venetian Archives. 20. Gregorio Barbarigo came before the Savii and spoke as follows in substance:—
Yesterday the English Ambassador, who had expressed the wish to come and see the regatta at my house, as I have informed your Excellencies, came thither, and I have gathered, from a somewhat lengthy conversation with him, the following matters which seem worth submitting to your notice, without adding other affairs of less weight, namely:—
He greatly valued the honour and kind entertainment afforded to Prince Don Luigi d'Este, especially in receiving him into your service, and he believed that your Serenity would be thoroughly satisfied with him, as he had shown great promise in his dispositions and habits by which, while in England, he had made a favourable impression upon his Majesty, who had learned with great satisfaction of his introduction to this service.
Concerning the present affairs of Savoy and Mantua, he hinted that your Serenity had been the principal cause of the maintenance of the freedom of the state of the duke of Mantua, because by their example and by the authority of their action they had confirmed the Florentines in their intention to assist him, and had largely incited the French to do the like, who, if matters had gone further, could hardly have done less than interest themselves more considerably in the affair, while the real support afforded by your Excellencies to the duke gave him the opportunity to gain time during the delay of such assistance. In this he has been wonderfully successful, so that the Spaniards have been willing to allow the differences to be accommodated.
He added that neither the duke of Savoy nor the duke of Mantua had ever given satisfaction to the Marquis, governor of Milan, but nevertheless he believed that the duke of Mantua had done well in coming off with the conditions which he has obtained. The ambassador hoped that these armies assembled by the Spaniards would gradually disperse, yet he did not observe all those good provisions which are usually seen in such arrangements, wherefore, in the confusion of the whole matter, it might be called a peace without terms as it had been a war without a declaration. He did not know whether these motions, which at the outset so much disturbed Italy, might give rise to fresh distrust beyond the Alps at their conclusion, apparently referring to Geneva and Berne, as he went on to speak of the duke of Savoy being ready to disarm the forces which he had raised for the affairs of Montferrat, but that he did not believe this. His Catholic Majesty would forbid it, in order to retain in being those whom he had previously collected for other purposes, concerning which he had informed His Majesty by the prince his son, and if at the fitting moment he had afterwards commanded that they should be disbanded, he would have done so; so that the proposal to the governor of Milan to allow half of the Spaniards to enter Piedmont, the residue to remain in Montferrat, to which the governor offered no objection, might give rise to the suspicion that it was in order to delay complete disarmament for the whole of this summer. The ambassador is certain that his king has taken it very ill that the duke of Savoy has entered into negotiations with the Genevese and Bernese in His Majesty's name, whereby many in those countries have been offended and have written strongly to the ambassador to ascertain His Majesty's intention.
He was greatly annoyed at the occasion for offence which that duke had offered your Excellencies because the duke had shown a good inclination towards his king in the past and he desired that all the friends of His Majesty should be united in good accord, wherefore he had been vexed to hear that the duke had given the house, which used to serve as the lodging of the ambassadors of Venice, to the Count Guido San Giorgio, and as that prince is most apt to attract by his courteous manners there were some who showed themselves well affected towards him, with whom the ambassador had some correspondence, who wrote that in Turin his Highness marvelled that His Majesty should so value the republic and that he could receive no fruit from its friendship. His Excellency stoutly condemned this idea, expressing and commending the high esteem of His Majesty for the republic, and he told me that he had deigned to make no other reply than this, that the opinion in Mantua was quite the contrary, believing that with these few words, though full of meaning, he had conveyed the vanity and falseness of such interested opinions and the little taste he had for such propositions.
He also told me that he had heard from Germany that the princes of the union refused to take part in the diet of Ratisbon unless those armies were previously disbanded which were assembled in the state of Milan, as they did not wish the house of Austria to derive advantage from their reputation in the matters which might be dealt with.
He spoke to me of this last league of his Majesty, the king of Denmark, the same united princes of Germany and the States of Holland, about which he did not know if all Italy was aware how powerful it was, but that if I should pass through Germany on my way to England I should be able to see what forces by land and sea and how many men they could collect. His Majesty is the head of the whole of this power, and with it he can to a great extent counterbalance that of Spain and prevent it from thinking of anything but itself.
That the duke of Lennox, who like many other English nobles had accompanied the princess, wife of the Palatine, to Heidelberg, had intended to go further and see the world and to come here to Venice, but His Majesty had desired him to go to France to treat of the marriage of the prince of England with the second princess, sister of His Most Christian Majesty, which has been mentioned before and for which negotiations are now to be continued.
In all these questions I conducted myself as I judged to be best, not omitting to testify, when opportunity offered, the obedience and obligation of your Excellencies to his Majesty and your desire for his esteem and such like things.
July 16. Consiglio X, Notatorio. Venetian Archives. 21. Order to pay 100 ducats to Gio. Battista Lionello, notary ordinary of the chancery, as a gift to make ready for his departure as secretary to Barbarigo, the ambassador elect for England.
July 17. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Spagna. Venetian Archives. 22. Piero Priuli, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The ambassadors of Denmark took leave of the king yesterday. He made them a present of horses, and has displayed the greatest esteem for them, as he wishes to keep their king well disposed towards him, that monarch being at loggerheads (in disgusti) with the Dutch.
Some days ago they made some proposals to close the straits of the Sound against the Dutch ships and to prevent them from taking wood and other things necessary for building ships, if His Majesty would indemnify the Danish people for the 60,000 crowns yearly which they gain from that traffic. A willing ear was given to these proposals, and they were told that the king would write to the Archduke Albert to treat upon the matter. But so far as I understand there is now no idea of concluding anything, as they do not think it wise to offend the Dutch without deriving much benefit for themselves.
From Madrid, 17 July, 1613.
July 17. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci. Milano. Venetian Archives. 23. Andrea Surian, Venetian Resident at Milan, to the Doge and Senate.
The earl of Arundel has arrived here with his wife and a good number of gentlemen. He comes from Heidelberg, whither he accompanied the princess of England. It is said that he is going to the baths of Lucca, but it is hard to believe that this is the sole object of his journey.
I hear that the duke of Savoy has written to press him to come and spend a few days at Turin.
From Milan, the 17 July, 1613.
July 18. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Costantin. Venetian Archives. 24. Cristoforo Valier, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
The timber which they ordered to be cut in the Red Sea has arrived here, to be sent to Cairo, to make ten galleys to sail the Red Sea against the English and Flemish bertons, and they are hastening the building of those ships. Up to the present no other orders to build galleys have been given, either in this arsenal or in the Black Sea. If they delay many weeks longer to send the necessary provision of money, there will be no time to prepare a large fleet, even if they want to, for next year.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, 18 July, 1613.
[Italian; deciphered.]
July 19. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives. 25. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
I have received the letters of your Serenity of the 25th and 27th ult., for His Majesty and the King of Denmark and your instructions to me. I have already asked an audience of the king, who will be at Theobalds to-morrow. I will thank him in the name of your Serenity for his offer of the help of himself and his allies with all their forces in all emergencies. I will add the duties to be performed with the ministers of Denmark, who are coming here. I will communicate the letters written to that king, so that if His Majesty sees fit for them to be sent under his own despatches, I may have commission to do it, and I will acquaint you with the reply.
Gabaleone continues to affirm the laying down of arms in Italy, and the letter of the governor of Milan of the 18th ult. to the queen of France confirms it. They say that restitution of the places was made on the preceding day, and they beseech Her Most Christian Majesty now that all is peaceful to suspend this levy of men and to recall those sent. Gabaleone has as yet made no propositions to the king, and seeing little chance of a favourable reception for them he will put it off. His Majesty has recalled his agent in Turin and is sending a nephew of Sir Henry Wotton. (fn. 6)
The deputies of Ireland are laying their affairs before the Lords of the Council to whom the king referred them, and all will end satisfactorily.
An unsigned letter to the king was found some days ago in the palace (fabbrica) of Whitehall (Vuital)' (fn. 7) warning him to have a care for his life because he will be in great danger before the 14th instant. This has angered His Majesty, and he is taking pains to discover the author.
They are endeavouring to augment the royal income 300,000 crowns a year by bringing into culture a number of the parks and forests of the crown in distant parts, which the king never enjoys or even sees.
His Majesty is writing to your Serenity that the merchants his subjects may be treated as in the past, so that if any individuals have done harm in the Red Sea or elsewhere they shall be punished. The letter is very forcible, and it seems to be in connection with others of the company of the Levant to the ambassadors in Constantinople.
The ambassador of the States has communicated with me with regard to the reports spread of their confederacy with the Turks. He accompanied this with a courteous reference to your Excellencies.
From London on 19 July, 1613.
July 20. Senato, Secreta. Brescia. Venetian Archives. 26. Report of representations made to Francesco Molino, Proveditore Extraordinary in the fortress of Orlinovi, by the Count Francesco Martinengo.
I asked him if the duke intended to take the offensive against your Serenity at sea, as it was understood that he has some ships of an English corsair at Villa Franca. He replied that they were more like boxes (scattole) than ships of war, and were of no value. That His Highness had certainly endeavoured to take some steps to attack and harass the republic at sea by means of the king of England, but that he had met with a decided repulse.
July 23. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives. 27. Zorzi Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The duke of Lennox, at his first audience with the queen, touched upon the proposed marriage, and he afterwards saw Villeroi and did the like. Friendly words passed between them, but in general terms. The duke understood from his master when leaving England that he would find a commission when he arrived here to propose and carry forward this affair, and the ordinary ambassador actually told this to Villeroi a few days before the duke's arrival. But on reaching here Lennox has been obliged to speak very cautiously, simply sounding the disposition of the queen and others. Finding this good he sent immediately to England, and he expects to receive instructions to set the matter on foot. He informed the queen that he had so sent.
Villeroi, having first understood from the words of the English ambassador that Lennox was bringing a definite commission, and then seeing him very cautious in his speech, has become suspicious of the sincerity of the king of England in this matter, believing that the Spaniards will leave no stone unturned with him to prevent it, as here also they advance the proposals made in the time of the late king to marry this second princess to the second son of Spain, promising to invest him with Flanders after the death of the Archduke.
But it is considered certain that the negotiations with England will proceed, and that Lennox will soon receive a definite commission from his king. Yesterday he dined in this house, and told me something about it. He gives all information in the matter to the duke of Guise, who is related to his king and who will do everything to procure success, which is also desired by all the court, except the adherents of Spain, who are not a few. These under pretext of state or of religion persuade the queen to create delays, but others who cannot bear to see the government subject to the will of the king of Spain are very eager for it, feeling sure that this new bond of relationship with England will adjust the state not only in the present but in the future, in spite of all that the Spaniards may attempt to the prejudice of others, after some years of repose.
From Paris, the 23 July, 1613.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
July 26. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Inghilterra. Venetian Archives. 28. Antonio Foscarini, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The king gave me audience after dinner on Monday, at Theobalds, and when I presented the letter of your Serenity, he said, I have heard from my ambassador of the great satisfaction which my offers and my resolve to help in all peril have given to the republic. They have given him a courteous answer and I am more than ever resolved in my purpose, and I beg you to assure the republic of this. He embraced me, with a joyful countenance. I thanked him for his offer of assistance, with the princes allied with him, and assured him of your concurrence. The king saw the letter and applauded the reading of it. He added that if the Turk moved he would see himself confronted by the forces of many realms. He afterwards said, the discords of Italy are pacified, arms are laid down and the duke of Savoy has finally become entirely a Spaniard and Spain speaks in his favour. That being so, I have approached the king of Denmark, the States will send him an ambassador and will league themselves with him, and I will get him to enter into the confederacy of states which has been set up under my auspices, and he turned to say that this will all be applied for the confirmation and safety of the republic.
I bowed and thanked him in two words, adding that the commission to open relations with the ministers of the king of Denmark was due to his efforts, whatever might be the issue. I added that I had letters for that king, which if he thought fit might go with his own dispatches, as your Excellencies had wisely resolved to follow His Majesty's advice, as he might see by the copy, which I presented to him.
The king listened to me attentively and said with some hesitation, They want me to send it. I replied, If your Majesty sees fit. He decided that he would await the letter of his ambassador, and after I had left the letter I took leave.
From London, the 26 July, 1613.
July 30. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Spagna. Venetian Archives. 29. Piero Priuli, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The letters of your Serenity of 25 June reached me after the departure of the ambassadors of Denmark. However, on their arrival at the court I did not fail to call on them and assure them of the friendliness of your Serenity towards their king. They returned my visit and assured me of the good disposition of their king towards your Serenity.
From Madrid, 30 July, 1613.
July 21/31. Collegio, Lettere Re. Venetian Archives. 30. Jacobus, etc., Serenissimo Marcantonio Memmo Venetiarum Duci.
Ante menses aliquos elapsos, cum vos certiores faceret Legatus noster, virum quendum (fn. 8) ad se detulisse ut in salutem nostram quid moliretur cum co actum fuisse. Cum rirum vos pro summa vestra in nos benevolentia et incolumitatis nostrae studio, primo vinculis contineri jussistis, atque deinceps per vestrum apud nos Legatum, vellemus ne virum apud ros reum agi, an nobis, tradi atque transmitti (quo accuratius ab illo quod ostenderat exquiri possit) arbitrio nostro permisistis. Ea res jam satis diu apud Consiliarios quosdam nostros deliberata, cum interim aliunde ad eos in eundem fere sensum notitia alia percenerit. Visum est illis ad explorandam rei veritatem permagni nostri interesse, ut qui apud vos custoditur hic praesens sit quo quaedam ab eo coram diligentius quam per litteras quaeri possint. Hos rero qui ex co quid Legatus vester ab initio obtulit, atque ex praeclaris benerolentiae in nos vestra testimoniis prioribus fiduciam nobis facinius in re tanto momenti ros facile quod nobis maxime conducat facturos esse. Mandavimus Legato ut de rero ad nos transmittendo roget sire ipsi dedi, sire ad Legatum restrum mitti velitis, quod judicio vestro relinquimus quorum etenim quidvis fiet. Caeteris amicitiae et studii vestri meritis maximum cumulum adjiciet. Datum in palatio nostro Westmonasterii, xxj die Julii anno Domini 1613.
Amicus Vester,
July 31. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Milano. Venetian Archives. 31. Andrea Surian, Venetian Secretary at Milan, to the Doge and Senate.
The Earl of Arundel has left here suddenly for Parma on his way to Padua, where he proposes to stay one or two months. He has gone away very dissatisfied with the governor's treatment of him and his tardiness.
From Milan, the last day of July, 1613.
July 31. Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Costantinop. Venetian Archives. 32. Cristoforo Valier, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
I have already written how I resolved to act independently in the matter of the duties imposed at Aleppo, notwithstanding the proposals of the ambassadors of France and England for concerted action. I have succeeded in obtaining a settlement, for I gained a great advantage by being the first to approach the Vizier. They have given orders that the subjects of your Serenity shall not be charged with the smallest impost beyond what has hitherto been paid. This will be of great advantage to us, and will increase our reputation with those other ambassadors. They are still considering how to advance their interests, but with all the promises which they have made to the Vizier, they are very doubtful if they will be successful. They have again approached me, and though I had obtained all that I needed for the service of your Serenity, yet in order to show your friendship towards their princes, I agreed to join with them in this matter. This has contented them, although their chief object was to obtain from me a share of the great expenses which they must incur to secure success.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, the last day of July, 1613.
[Italian; deciphered.]


  • 1. Count John of Nassau Dillenburg, who died 2 Sep., 1623.
  • 2. Margaret, daughter of John, Duke of Holstein Sunderburg, was his second wife. Anderson: Royal Genealogies.
  • 3. Probably the Count of Hohenlohe.
  • 4. Sir Lewis Lewkenor.
  • 5. Don Inico de Cardenas, the Spanish Ambassador.
  • 6. Albert Morton.
  • 7. Cf. Birch, Court of James I., i. p. 251, On Saturday last, being the 26th, a letter was found in the stone gallery of Whitehall addressed to the king, advising him of treason.' Chamberlain to Carleton.
  • 8. Giovanni Vincenzo Gaetano.