Venice: November 1563

Pages 369-371

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 7, 1558-1580. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1890.

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November 1563

Nov. 11. Original Letter Book, Venetian Archives. 347. Marc' Antonio Barbaro, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Signory.
I wrote lately to your Serenity that commissions were expected from England, to treat some arrangement between the Queen of England and this Crown; since then two communications from the Queen of England have reached her Ambassador resident here who is at liberty, while the other is in custody at St. Germain. I know that the first named has received a commission and procuration, with ample authority to treat and conclude a stipulation and peace with these Majesties; so the day before yesterday both of these Ambassadors were summoned to the Court about this business, and went thither yesterday. In the meanwhile a conference is to be held at Gravelines, which will be attended by some personages from England; whilst from hence they will send in like manner, for this purpose, Mons. de Lansac, and the secretary, Mons. de L'Aubespine; but the whole difficulty between these two Crowns consists in the restitution of Calais, which place, by the last agreement of 1559, was to be restored to the English at the end of eight years, of which four have already elapsed. The difficulty is, that the French pretend to be absolved from that promise, through the action taken and alteration made by the Queen of England in the matter of Havre-de-Grace, as frequently written by me. It is believed that his most Christian Majesty will not assent to the pretensions of Queen Elizabeth in support of her claim; and that the Queen will not make peace unless her pretensions are recognised. Hence it is inferred that they will make a truce for the four years which remain of the period of restitution, at the end of which either in one way or another some conclusive resolution will be come to. In the meanwhile, both sides will enjoy the benefit of peace, and commerce will be secure in these seas.
Paris, 11th November 1563.
Nov. 18. Original Letter Book, Venetian Archives. 348. Marc' Antonio Barbaro, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Signory.
The English Ambassadors who went to the Court departed after doing but little; for their commission being joint, the one who was kept as it were prisoner said he declined to negotiate unless he were free; and on the other hand, his most Christian Majesty said that before other business he demanded the fulfilment of what was agreed to at the restitution of Havre-de-Grace; because the English had yet to give up pome artillery and ammunition, removed from the place; for these reasons, despatches have again been sent to England, and the reply is awaited. In the meanwhile, in the seas of Flanders, France, and England, thousands of acts of piracy are committed; and trade there is quite interrupted, to the dissatisfaction of the King Catholic, many of whose subjects are much damnified by these proceedings of the English and French.
Paris, 18th November 1563.
Nov. 30. Original Letter Book, Venetian Archives. 349. Marc' Antonio Barbaro, Venetian Ambassador in France to the Signory.
The Parliament of Provence, which is that of Aix, having always been very Catholic, never chose to accept those edicts of peace which prejudiced the religion and its security; so they issued some writs against these new Evangelicals, who have in consequence made strong complaints by virtue of the favour which they have here. The King therefore interdicted and suspended the Parliament, and deprived it of authority and administration, determining to send thither six personages of authority and power, to execute the King's commands. An order has been given to summon some members of that Parliament to appear here at the Court in person, and it is feared that this proceeding may cause some stir in that province.
Paris, 30th November 1563.