Venice: February 1651

Pages 168-171

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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February 1651

Feb. 3.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Costantinopoli. Venetian Archives.
453. The Sieur De La Haye, French Ambassador at Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
The Turks are urging the English parliamentary ambassador to furnish them with the twenty ships he promised, as I have been assured that he has bound himself to furnish up to that number.
Pera of Constantinople, the 3rd February, 1651.
[Italian, from the French ; deciphered.]
Feb. 3.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
454. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
I have spoken to the secretary of the English Agent as instructed, expressing the Senate's esteem for his country. I told him of the news from Constantinople about the seizure of Christian ships in Turkish ports, and asked him to write for steps to be taken against such violence. I referred tactfully to the reported offer of ships to the Turk by his ambassador, asking him to represent that the republic could not believe that the Levant Company would break its written word, feeling sure that if the ambassador had taken liberties his agreements would be promptly quashed. The secretary expressed great desire to oblige your Excellencies and promised to write on the subject to parliament.
Encloses letter from Salvetti.
Paris, the 3rd February, 1651.
Enclosure. 455. Amerigo Salvetti, Tuscan Resident in England, to the Ambassador Morosini.
Regrets to hear the news from Constantinople. Has seen the governor of the Company and told him. The governor said he could not believe that the ambassador had gone so far. The Company's orders were precise. Divisions between the royalist and the parliamentary merchants might have caused trouble, but the Company would see that it did not go further. They would petition parliament for a general order to all English ships and merchants to give up going to Constantinople, and to allow them to go to Smyrna only. Salvetti considers this unlikely to happen on account of the great profits which this nation has always derived from that trade, but he will know more when he has seen the body of the Company.
London, the 16th January, 1651.
Feb. 4.
Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni. Corti. Venetian Archives.
456. To the Ambassador in Spain.
Acknowledge receipt of his letters and note the steps taken for a close friendship with the English parliament, and the pernicious pretext to which that Court has recourse to give an appearance of honesty to the proceeding. Any further particulars which come to his knowledge will always be welcome and acceptable. The Senate will also be most eager to hear what he has been able to achieve with the king and ministers by his offices to prevent the junction of the English parliamentary ships with the Turks in the approaching campaign.
Ayes, 103. Noes, 6. Neutral, 22.
Feb. 8.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Spagna. Venetian Archives.
457. Pietro Basadonna, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The ambassadors of the king of England are awaiting the return of his Majesty in order that they may take leave and depart, although at the moment the cabinet is not pressing them so much as before, since fresh incidents occur daily to render it distrustful of parliament and to diminish the hope of advantage from that quarter. It amounted to nothing more than a promise to harass Portugal, and now an ambassador from the Duke of Braganza has gone to London for the purpose of making peace. It is expected that this will be easily arranged as the parliament wishes first of all to settle domestic affairs before embroiling itself abroad. It is also understood that France proposes to send a minister to England and that Cardinal Mazarini is bent on thwarting the alliance between this crown and the parliament. The ambassadors told me this in confidence and although they are not ill informed about French affairs, I defer to intelligence from the spot.
Another incident seems to have irritated the king exceedingly against the parliament, for it has reached him that the admiral, who had been well received at Cadiz, remarked in the public square there that with the example afforded by London all kingdoms will annihilate tyranny and become republics. England had done so already ; France was following in her wake ; and as the natural gravity of the Spaniards rendered them somewhat slower in their operations, he gave them ten years for the revolution in this country. (fn. 1) Moreover from that end Cardenas reports that after his victory in Scotland, Cromuel wrote to the parliament that through that success they might now consider the affairs of the interior safe, and that for the future they must think of helping other nations to throw off the yoke, and to consolidate their own government by establishing republican neighbours.
Another sentence has been passed in favour of the sanctuary claimed by Ascham's murderers, who now await the third decree of the nuncio. After that it is thought that nothing further will stand in the way of their release, as the circumstances just related favour them wonderfully.
Madrid, the 8th February, 1651.
[Italian ; deciphered.]
Feb. 14.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
458. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Encloses letter received from Salvetti.
Paris, the 14th February, 1651.
Enclosure. 459. Amerigo Salvetti, Tuscan Resident in England, to the Ambassador Morosini.
Reports an interview with the Levant Company on the preceding Saturday. They told him that the republic had been misinformed. They had received no such news and did not believe it. Their orders were precise and they showed the entry in their registry book. They said that if the ambassador had any such idea he would not have asked the Company to obtain a decree from parliament forbidding any ships or sailors to serve foreign powers. They expected a favourable response and that would remove all jealousy for the future.
London, the 2nd February, 1651.
Feb. 21.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Spagna. Venetian Archives.
460. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Secretary of the English Agent has called and assured me that his letters to stop ships of his country going to Turkish ports from fear of being seized, in accordance with the decision of the Divan, had been read and discussed in parliament. He promised to let me know the reply when it came. I thanked him suitably.
Paris, the 21st February, 1651.
Feb. 25.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Spagna. Venetian Archives.
461. Pietro Basadonna, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The English ambassadors took leave of his Majesty last week, but they are supposed to be delaying their departure in order to see the result of the affair of the prisoners. Without their protection these men would not only run great risks but would lack their daily bread, as almost all the English merchants resident in Madrid follow the fortune of the conqueror and do not wish to be on bad terms with the parliament.
Madrid, the 25th February, 1651.
Feb. 28.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
462. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The 24 ships which are arming in England will not be for service with the Turks. I was not certain that it was ever to be feared in spite of the advices I received from your Excellencies of promises of great squadrons made to the Porte by the parliamentary ambassador. I am advised, however, that they are to serve in the Ocean where it seems that parliament intends to lay claim to an absolute sovereignty.v Paris, the 28th February, 1651.


  • 1. The admiral here referred to must be Blake, as Penn did not reach Cadiz until 1st March. G. Penn : Memoirs of William Penn, Vol. I, page 323.