Venice: June 1671, 21-30

Pages 79-81

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 37, 1671-1672. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1939.

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June 1671, 21–30

June 26.
71. Girolamo Alberti, Venetian Secretary in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The duke of Cambridge, of tender age and delicate, expired last week to the regret of the king and queen and of his father, the duke of York. (fn. 1) He would have inherited the crown, but was subject to a variety of diseases, beyond the endurance of the strongest constitution. The mourning, which the freedom of country life had somewhat relaxed, has now again become formal. All the foreign ministers went to Windsor to offer condolences, including myself.
During the whole of this week, while staying at the Court at Windsor, I had frequent opportunities of conferring with the foreign ministers, and among the rest with France. When I congratulated him on having succeeded in preserving the neutrality of England, in spite of the temptations of the allies, he replied that his king was very well pleased with this, as it was all that he desired. Further the English government had decided not to send back the Ambassador Temple to Holland, thus indicating clearly the rejection of closer ties with the United Provinces. Colbert holds this in great account and the Spaniards resent it exceedingly, for hearing on the other hand fresh reports of adjustments between France and Holland they believe themselves surrounded and are afraid of too good an understanding between the parties.
Colbert construes the detention of Temple here in his own fashion, but from several circumstances I infer that the true cause is to prevent Holland from following the course mentioned in my last, and to keep on good terms with France, as the United Provinces may again join with her. England follows the policy not to involve herself with the allies, break with France and then be abandoned by them.
The truth is that Grotius, having returned from France, declares himself satisfied with his negotiations. As Courtin as well as Rovigni have been appointed ambassadors from France to the United Provinces, while the king there has sent Scilleri and Pompona to Sweden, the government here is disturbed by such proceedings, but comes to the conclusion that Holland will risk more by distrusting this crown than from any loss she might have suffered by taking patience, without insisting on a declaration of war from England.
Notwithstanding all this the levies of 9000 English, Scotch and Irish, requested by the Most Christian, make no progress and the ministry will occupy itself about the arbitration with the same zeal as at first.
The Swedish resident tells me that in a few weeks he is expecting here his king's ambassador, Baron Spaar and that they will then set to work about the arbitration; but he does not know whether they will abide by the decision about the disputed boundaries or proceed to the division, in order to separate the territories, for the greater quiet of their possessors.
Spragh's engagement with the Algerines is confirmed from several sources and the king said publicly in the queen's presence chamber that since the war the corsairs had lost twenty two ships; that they had about ten left and that during the whole time they had not taken so much as a pinnace from the English.
Acknowledges ducali of the 30th May.
London, the 26th June, 1671.
June 27.
72. That the following be read to the English Resident Darinton by a notary extraordinary of the ducal chancery:
We have read your request in respect of the debt alleged to be due to Captain Tidiman of the ship Vivian. From an examination of the records it appears that this debt was completely discharged in February 1654. We hope that you will rest assured of the friendly disposition of this state towards yourself and to your highly esteemed countrymen.
Ayes, 74. Noes, 3. Neutral, 34.
June 30.
73. The Resident of England came to the Collegio and gave the following memorial, which was read. The doge said that inquiry would be made, and they would let him know. For the rest they assured him of their desire to gratify him. The resident asked leave to say a word. The Levant Company of England has suspended the currant trade of the Morea and proposes to suspend that of Zante because of some ill treatment. It might be as well to give them satisfaction, in order to put an end to this idea. (fn. 2) The doge replied with some formal remarks about the desirability of preserving the mutual trade. After the usual reverences the resident departed.


  • 1. Edgar, duke of Cambridge, died at Richmond on Thursday 8/18 June. London Gazette, June 8–12, 1671.
  • 2. The Morea trade was suspended for a year by a resolution taken at a Court held on 5 June, o.s. Levant Co. Court Book, S.P. For. Archives, Vol. cliii. fol. 101d. There is nothing in the Company's records about the Zante trade, but Dodington himself suggested that the best way to get a satisfactory treaty would be the breaking of the trade for a year at least. Dodington to Arlington, June 26, n.s. S.P. Venice, Vol. 1, f. 16.