Venice: August 1648

Pages 69-72

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 1648

Aug. 4.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Munster. Venetian Archives.
166. Alvise Contarini, Venetian Ambassador to the Congress at Munster, to Michiel Morosini, his colleague in France.
The Prince of Wales and the duke of York have finally embarked on the fleet as they did not want to betray lack of confidence. So great a trustfulness is not commended by everybody and the results are awaited with curiosity. The Palatine Princes Rupert and Maurice were unwilling to take the risk and have remained in Holland with other English military men. They will embark, however, when the Princes of England send ships to fetch them in which they can feel confidence.
Munster, the 4th August, 1648.
[Italian ; copy.]
Aug. 4.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
167. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Encloses sheet of events of London.
Paris, the 4th August, 1648.
Enclosure. 168. Advices from London, [the 23rd July], 1648.
The party formed in Surrey for the king of England under the Earl of Holland, instead of advancing, has dissolved. To this end parliament has declared the Duke of that county (fn. 1) and the Earls of Holland and Peterborough traitors, having ordered the seizure of all their goods and intending to proceed against them according to the rigour of the laws. The Commons have also directed the raising of a new army corps, consisting of cavalry only, commanded by Colonel Butler. The Scottish army has practically entered England in a body in the king's service. The town of Colchester is still holding out bravely, but the cavalry of the insurgents has been almost totally dispersed by the parliamentary army and the Earl of Holland taken prisoner. (fn. 2)
Aug. 11.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
169. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Encloses sheet of events of London.
Paris, the 11th August, 1648.
Enclosure. 170. Advices from London, the 1st August, 1648.
Before entering upon any personal negotiations with the king the Commons require the signature of three propositions, i.e. control of the militia for ten years, Presbyterian government and the revocation of all declarations against parliament, having ordained that claims upon any particulars shall be carried before that House. Many sittings were devoted to settling where the negotiations should be held, and it was agreed that his Majesty should name three places from which parliament should select one.
It is established that the Scots together with the English who have declared for the king's side have entered the northern counties, with which they have an excellent understanding, and in 8 or 10 days they reckon to have 20,000 men. At the news of this invasion of 14,000 Scots 12,000 of the inhabitants of London signed a great petition to parliament asking that the king should be brought to London. (fn. 3) There is also the capture of some parliament ships made by the Prince of Wales at the mouth of the Thames. He went there with the fixed intention of trying to deliver his father by force.
Aug. 14.
Senato, Secreta. Deliberazioni. Corti. Venetian Archives.
171. To the Ambassador in France.
For such time as Castelli remains in England you should supply him with the means for his support and to return, as the Ambassador Nani has done, entering the cost in your accounts. You will try to make sure that his stay will prove successful, otherwise you will put a stop to it, to avoid any further fruitless expenditure.
Ayes, 105. Noes, 0. Neutral, 7.
Aug. 18.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
172. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
Encloses the sheet of events of London.
Paris, the 18th August, 1648.
Enclosure. 173. Advices from London, [the 8th August], 1648.
They still claim the signing of the three articles before consenting to treat for the liberation of the king. The Scots are declared rebels and enemies of the kingdom as well as the English who have joined them. The Scots following the publication of their last manifesto, have entered Westmoreland and captured Appleby, where there was a parliamentary garrison. (fn. 4) Major General Lambert has retired into Yorkshire and the Earl of Calender has arrived at Bauirch with 10,000 Scots to unite with the Duke of Hamilton. The army, English and Scots together, consists of 20,000 men and Colonel Lambert is retiring, considering himself too weak to resist them.
The Prince of Wales arrived at Tarmurt, where he stayed two days without landing. (fn. 5) A deputation was sent by the town to pay their respects and to apologise for not receiving him in the town because of the disorder throughout the county.
The Scots make five demands, the observation of the Presbyterian religion and the covenant ; the release of the king and his re-establishment on the throne ; the preservation of the authority of parliament ; the ratification of the city of London ; the disbanding of Fairfax's troops or at least of the sectaries, so they call them.
Aug. 25.
Senato, Secreta. Dispacci, Francia. Venetian Archives.
174. Michiel Morosini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Marquis of Ormont has withdrawn his offer of a levy on the ground of the employment which he has with the Prince of Wales. He apologised profusely and expressed his deep regret at this impediment which diverted him from a service which he was most ambitious to render.
Castelli writes from Bristol that the three ships will leave at the end of this week, after which it will certainly be impossible to enlist a single man ; so he will return.
The sheet of the events of London is enclosed.
Paris, the 25th August, 1648.
Enclosure. 175. Advices from London, [the 16th August], 1648.
We hear from London that the Prince of Wales is in the Downs with six ships where he has stopped five London ships laden with goods worth two million pounds, which has caused a great clamour as they fear trade may be stopped altogether. Scarborough, a town of importance, has declared for the king with some others. Lambert's defeat is confirmed and the bridges he crossed were broken for fear of pursuit by the Scots. They were awaiting a satisfactory reply from parliament to the city of London, otherwise it was feared that all the shops would be closed for everyone to attend to his own defence and safety. But as the letters did not arrive from those parts with the ordinary yesterday, it is presumed that great disorder reigns in London, where the city is divided into three parties, i.e. the Scots, the Presbyterians and the Royalists. Letters have come at last reporting that parliament has decided upon a personal treaty with the king, but they wish this to take place at the Isle of Wight, to which the king will never consent.


  • 1. The duke of Buckingham is intended. Cal. S.P. Dom., 1648-9, page 173.
  • 2. At St. Neots on the 10/20 July.
  • 3. This may refer to several petitions presented on the 18/28 July, one from the watermen of London in favour of a personal treaty. Rushworth ; Hist. Colls., Pt. IV, Vol. ii., page 1196.
  • 4. On the 31st July, O.S.
  • 5. He arrived off Yarmouth on the 22nd July, O.S., and sailed for the Downs on the 24th. See Cal. S.P. Dom., 1648-9, pages 208, 209.