Venice: August 1649

Pages 111-115

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 28, 1647-1652. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1927.

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August 1649

Aug. 7.
Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni. Costantinopoli. Venetian Archives.
313. To the Secretaries Alberti and Vianuol at Constantinople.
With the English ambassador, in spite of the great cruelty and hostility shown by the concession of his ships to the Turks, it is desirable to dissimulate, and indeed to express appreciation of the good offices which he has performed for the release of the Bailo, and to persuade him to persevere with them.
Ayes, 126. Noes, 1. Neutral, 5.
Aug. 10.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
314. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The parliament of England has sent to an agent (fn. 1) here letters for their Majesties demanding the restoration of the ship Apollo within 40 days else they will issue an order permitting reprisals against French ships. Here they attach great importance to the affair, as if they receive the letter that will be a kind of recognition of the new republic and a great affront to the king. If they do not receive it they are afraid of the order. They have not decided anything yet, as the question deserves full consideration.
Compiegne, the 10th August, 1649.
Aug. 17.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
315. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Encloses usual sheet of London.
Compiegne, the 17th August, 1649.
Enclosure. 316. Advices from London, of the 7th August, 1649.
While the Marquis of Ormond is besieging Dublin, which will fall unless Gen. Cromuell goes more energetically to its relief, Lord Inchquin has captured Drogheda and Colmor, thus cutting off all hope of relief from the governor of Londonderry, which is also blockaded by the royalists. Messrs. Deleur and Ards, after taking Nocfergus, are marching with 1,000 horse and 4,000 foot to besiege Dundalk, it is supposed, and then go on to the siege of Dublin. Meanwhile Owen Roe is staying in those parts with 6,000 men, all Catholics, who say they are only waiting for the coming of the king to Ireland, and they will obey him alone.
Prince Rupert has come on shore, because the parliamentarians are stronger than he is at sea, and to prevent them from landing at Kingsal. He has left his ships under protection in a port taken from the parliamentarians.
Aug. 20.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Costantinopoli. Venetian Archives.
317. Giovanni Soranzo, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
I have tried to resume confidential relations with the English ambassador, thanking him for his efforts for my release. I wished to remove the impression that anything had been said or written against him because of the ships. He sent to thank me and to show me how that necessity alone had compelled them to make the concession because the ships at Smyrna were not allowed to revictual and so the sailors would have died of hunger. At present he is in great distress. The thirteen English ships which sailed from Smyrna with the Captain Pasha to Candia, after they had landed the troops, victuals and men, did not wish to continue the service, as the Captain Pasha desired, and took their leave practically on their own responsibility. They sailed west for the place where they were laded and arrived at Smyrna. The Captain Pasha has written about this with the greatest warmth. Here they pretend that the ships have not fulfilled their contract and they demand of the ambassador and the nation the restitution of the 60,000 reals which they say has been given to the ships. The ambassador asked for audience of the First Vizier upon this three days ago. He was told that without the money it would not be given him. He determined to go to the Mufti, with very closely written papers upon this affair of his. He was very well received and apparently the Mufti promised to get him audience of the First Vizier. He went the day before yesterday, but had the worst possible reception. The Vizier never asked him to sit and only allowed him to utter a few words before he broke in with the most violent accusations, saying he had eaten his own words, that the fleet had been betrayed, that they had led it into the fire so that it might be burned and they required from them not only the money paid for the hire of the ships, but the entire cost of the fleet, otherwise they would treat him worse than they had treated the Bailo, and would have him put in the same dungeon of the Black Sea. The ambassador could get nothing more out of him and they have even sent off at once a chiaussi to Smyrna to stop the ships, seize the captains, sequestrate the goods, in short the fire is kindled against them. Things would have gone even worse if the Vizier had been able to do as he wished, as he certainly desired to have the ambassador put in the towers of the Black Sea. The consulta however would not consent to this, on the ground that they did not want to start greater quarrels, and so all find safety at the cost of the ruin of my country.
I think that the Turks' chief anxiety is not for the money, which the English certainly cannot give them back, but to compel them to let them have the ships again. However, the ambassador and all the merchants talk very bravely and declare most absolutely that they will not give them so much as an aspro and they would rather take themselves off altogether. Such is the present state of affairs though the situation may possibly be relieved by the news of the death of the Captain Pasha which arrived here by the night courier. (fn. 2)
There are reports of an action at sea in which the Turks suffered heavy losses, An English Captain Rei, the leader of the 13 ships, has written about this, but in the copy of his letter shown to me that part was cut out. Letters from Smyrna report the arrival of those ships back there, and this might be the foundation of the accusation of betrayal made by the Vizier to the English ambassador. In the universal excitement of the people against the English one hears it said that their treason consists in the captains of the ships having advised ours of their separation and departure from the Turks so that they might go and attack the Captain Pasha.
Encloses the account of the English captain and the letter from Smyrna.
The Vigne di Pera, the 20th August, 1649.
[Italian ; deciphered.]
Enclosure. 318. Relatio Cap. Read de expeditione Navium anglicarum Candiam in epistola quadam ad mercatorem anglicanum Constantinopoli conscripta.
Hae litterae te certiorem facient de redditu nostro, eoque incolumissimi Smirnam qui quidem nuntius sat scio futurus est tibi longi gratissimum verum ut brevem aliquem totius itineris rationem exhibem intelliget dominatu vestra nos quarto Junii nosmet una cum navibus nostris coram Capitano Bassa in Chio presentasse quinto vela fecimus, constante tota classe turkium in navibus, quadriremis et triremis clxxiii. decima die substiti etc.
319. Extract from a letter of the Vice-Consul at Smyrna, of the 3rd August.
Last Sunday an English ship arrived, four came yesterday and one to-day. Another is expected soon. They belong to the 13 which went with the Turkish fleet. The other six have proceeded on their voyage, after putting in at Candia. Those here state that they sighted the Christian fleet off Mila, but an action was impossible because of the calm. The English ships were in the rear and four or rather eight of the Christian ships opened fire and then left them alone, it is not known why. The fleets afterwards separated, the Christian one going to Candia and the others to Rettimo, where they landed the troops and provisions off the 13 ships, for which they were given a receipt. The Captain Pasha wanted them to accompany him to the citadel of Candia, but they told him they had fulfilled their bargain with the Grand Vizier by landing the troops and they were thereafter free to go where they pleased. They would not go to fight the men of the citadel or with anyone else and they would rather die and lose their ships. Seeing they were so determined the Captain Pasha let them go but he would not give them a paper of release. They state that on the 16th July, a Friday, the Captain Pasha sailed with the rest of the fleet, consisting of over 131 ships, for Candia, and on the Sunday following, at dawn, they began to hear heavy firing which lasted all day and half the night. It seemed to come from the direction of Fraschia about 18 miles from Candia, and they believe it was a fight between the two fleets.
Aug. 21.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Germania. Venetian Archives.
320. Niccolo Sagredo, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, to the Doge and Senate.
The Turks have erected some new forts along the coast. Many English ships have united with their fleet and with the vessels from Barbary it is already considerable. It is reported to have left Scios for Candia.
Cimmerin, the 21st August, 1649.
Aug. 23.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Capitano Gen. da Mar. Venetian Archives.
321. Alvise Mocenigo, Venetian Captain General at Sea, to the Doge and Senate.
Report on the action at Fochies.
With regard to the distribution of chains as rewards I find that only five ships sustained the fighting at Fochies. These were the Pinco Orso Negro, which was the first to force its way in, commander Alvise Navagier ; La Carita Magna, commander Alvise Querini ; the San Filippo, commander Michiel Callergi ; the Jupiter and the Scottish ship, without a commander. This last performed the most marvellous feats of valour and skill. She sank a galeasse, handled the Captain Pasha so roughly that he was on the verge of destruction (riducendo in stato di perdersi) and captured another Maona which was abandoned by her commander and officers and hauled down her flag. Subsequently with her boats she rescued a very large number of slaves after cutting down a good many Turks who had climbed on to the ship. This Scottish ship, being holed on the water line and under water, with its masts injured and damaged in every part was finally lost in the harbour of Andros.
A French ship behaved badly and the English ship Experience also misconducted itself on that occasion, turning its back out at sea (prendendo il bordo fuor in mare). It has not been thought expedient to punish them.
Candia, the 23rd August, 1649.
Aug. 24.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
322. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Encloses the usual sheet of London.
Paris, the 24th August, 1649.
Enclosure. 323. Advices from London, of the 16th August, 1649.
The surrender of Dublin to the Marquis of Ormond is steadily confirmed in spite of partisans who assert the contrary. (fn. 3) It is impossible to doubt the truth considering the dearth of everything in the place.
Alderman Falbex (fn. 4) has been arrested for not having rendered account of the money which he has kept for many years, for the payment of the fleet and the soldiers have sacked his house in London. According to reports Cromuell will soon be back in London, whither they say he has sent back the 100,000l. sterling which were sent to him last week, to Bristol, from which he was to sail. Since the announcement of the surrender of Dublin it is said that the Scots have entered that country in the north, with a strong army, but the news is unlikely, since it has not called away Gen. Fairfax from the pleasures of his villa and the chase, which he is enjoying at Chinelenton. (fn. 5)
Aug. 31.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
324. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Encloses sheet of events of London.
Paris, the 31st August, 1649.
Enclosure. 325. Advices from London, the 26th August, 1649.
There is no longer any question about Lieut. Gen. Cromuell not going to Ireland with all his forces, which he is gathering steadily in Wales and the neighbouring counties to unite that country to this by his skill as a person highly esteemed in such negotiations. There is already a report that Onel, general of the Irish Catholics, may agree to an accommodation with liberty of conscience, which Cromuell will readily grant him. But many say that he will not, as a pretender to the crown of Ireland, being in the true line of the royal house there.
The royal property is being put up for sale daily and there is no lack of purchasers. Already an immense quantity of jewels and furniture of great consequence and tapestries of the king's house have been disposed of, but not houses and royal estates, which were disposed of long ago.


  • 1. The agent was Réné Augier. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1649-50, page 183. The Apollo was a ship of the Levant Co. of 400 tons and 20 guns, Isaac Wargrene, master, seized by the French when sailing into the Adriatic with a cargo worth 70,000 dollars and carried into Porto Longone. S.P. For. Archives, Vol. 144, fol. 8.
  • 2. Woinok Ahmed, the Turkish Captain Pasha, killed by gunshot at Suda on the 28th July.
  • 3. The siege was raised on the 2nd August when Ormonde was routed at Rathmines.
  • 4. Beaven : Alderman of the City of London records no one of this name or anything like it.
  • 5. Kensington. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1649-50, page 318.