Venice: October 1567

Pages 405-406

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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October 1567

Oct. 16. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 406. Giovanni Michiel, Venetian Ambassador with the Emperor, to the Doge and Senate.
The negotiation of the English marriage, as I have been told by a great personage who has a great hand in its management, has resolved itself into only two difficulties, the rest of the Articles being considered as settled. The first difficulty is that the Queen stands very firm in her resolve not to agree to marry any man until she has first seen him, and became personally acquainted with him; saying that she does this for no other reason than because she has so sworn; and as she does not wish to break or contravene her oath, she insists that the Archduke shall repair thither. A similar proposition was made last year by the English gentleman named Mr. Dannett (Mistro Anet), who was sent here by post on the same business, and who received the same answer as is now given, which is, that the Queen should disabuse herself of this idea, as the Archduke would never consent to that which not even a private gentleman would consent to (namely), to go with such indignity to make a show of himself, and to submit to the risk of suffering a repulse. The Ambassador replied with an offer to give security to the Archduke that before he departs he shall have a tacit and secret promise from all the principal Lords of the kingdom proper in this case, to compel the Queen (una tacita et secreta promissione da tutti li Signori prencipali del Regno, atti in questo caso, a forzar la Regina), so that he shall not go on chance, and that the marriage shall take effect. Nevertheless it is still insisted [on this side] that the Archduke will not go unless the matter be first arranged and stipulated in every respect, as is customary between Princes, and between persons contracting marriage in absence.
The other difficulty is about religion. Whereas in the first negotiation of Mr. Dannett, the Queen was unwilling that the Archduke should live otherwise than according to the rites and usages of England; now the Ambassador modifies this article, proposing that the question of religion shall be discussed after the Archduke's arrival in England, and stating the intention to be not otherwise to bind his Highness to live in their fashion, but to gratify him in all that they honestly can, provided it can be done without danger of disturbance or disorder of the kingdom. As to this point, the Emperor and Archduke wish the matter of religion to be treated and resolved here, as they are unwilling to submit to the power or will of others in that respect. And although the Archduke demands that a church shall be granted and assigned to him, nevertheless the Ambassador [merely] condescends to a private chapel in his (the Archduke's) own palace, but on the understanding that all that shall be agreed to as to religion shall be kept most secret, and treated as if it had not been spoken, to the end it may appear that the determination is made in England with universal participation and consent.
Upon these two difficulties the Ambassador has this very day despatched a gentleman of his, named Mr. Henry Cobham, by post to England, with the requisite instructions. On this gentleman's return, which cannot be before the end of forty days, it will be discovered for certain whether the Queen is dissembling, as many believe (putting forward these difficulties because she has no mind to marry out of the kingdom, and perhaps does not intend to marry at all), or whether she speaks and wishes to act in earnest.
Vienna, 16th October 1567.
Oct. 18. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 407. Giovanni Correr, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
News has arrived that [the Count de] Montgomery (Mongomeri), who killed King Henry [II.], has taken Etampes (Tampes).
The castle was holding out, but not being a strong place it had to surrender; his Majesty had sent in relief Count Sara Martinengo with two ensigns of infantry and one company of men-at-arms, but the force arrived too late, and was compelled to turn back.
This locality is called the granary of Paris, because from thence comes a large quantity of grain, and it is easy to see that the plan is to starve this city, which begins to feel the consequences of an enemy who is near at hand, and who is master of many rivers.
Paris, 18th October 1567.
Oct. 31. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 408. Giovanni Correr, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The castle of Etampes has been retaken, and a garrison of three hundred soldiers has been sent thither.
The Huguenots, who, by the arrival of Montgomery, and some other small aid, had increased their force to three thousand five hundred horse, and about the same number of infantry, gave battle at midday in the face of all this city, and took the bridge of Charenton (Sciarantone), which is one mile distant from hence. The Captain offered no defence whatever, although he might have behaved valiantly; he then thought fit to come and excuse himself, but this availed him nothing, and he was hanged by the neck.
Paris, 31st October 1567.