BHO

Venice: June 1585

Pages 116-118

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 8, 1581-1591. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1894.

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Citation:

June 1585

June 1. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 273. Giovanni Dolfin, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Queen of England writes to the King of France to urge him to peace by all means in her power; pointing out that if his own subjects succeed in compelling him to do as they desire, it will have a bad effect in the future, and reminding him how she, a poor little woman without resources, acted at the beginning of her reign when two of her greatest subjects took arms against her at the suggestion and with the help of the King of Spain, their common foe; how she drove the rebels out of the kingdom, and if she could succeed, so much the more easily would a powerful monarch like his Majesty. The English Ambassador showed me a copy of this letter when he called on me to inquire whether I had any orders on the subject of removing the dues. He further told me that six thousand troops are ready in London to go to the assistance of Navarre, and the Queen has sent an express to offer them to the King.
They say the Queen has issued an edict expelling all priests, of whatever nationality, within forty days under pain of death; exception is made in favour of the French Ambassador.
Paris, 1st June 1585.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
June 1. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 274. Vincenzo Gradenigo, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
Some days ago a courier from Lisbon passed through with news that Drake had been reinforced by eight ships, so that he is in command of forty-four sail, all well armed ; that he had left Madeira to meet the Peruvian fleet; on this account the Marquis of Santa Cruz, who had received orders to arm thirty-four ships and to fight Drake, now writes to say that he requires a larger force ; he also presents his list of expenses, and explains the difficulty he finds in raising money. This same courier passed through on his way back two days ago. He is supposed to be the bearer of suitable orders.
Saragoza, 1st June 1585
[Italian.]
June 15 Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 275. Vincenzo Gradenigo, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
They are much afraid, indeed they hold it certain, that Drake will strike a blow at the Peruvian fleet, as there is no news of him. They write from Lisbon that it is impossible that the Marquis of Santa Cruz should be in time to save it, as he cannot be ready for some days yet. The Ministers wishing to exonerate him from blame for this delay, and concealing, perhaps, some deficiency at Lisbon which renders the armament of forty or even of thirty vessels a difficult matter, declare that even if the fleet be captured the Marquis will recover it all on Drake's homeward journey, speaking as though it rested with him to meet and capture wherever he choses.
Saragoza, 15th June 1585.
[Italian.]
June 19. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 276. Vincenzo Gradenigo, Venetian Ambassador in Spain to the Doge and Senate.
The embargo on French and English shipping is carried old with all rigour. Not merely the ships but also their crews are seized. At Bilbao, in Biscay, an officer of the local magistrate went on board an English ship, to seize it in the King's name. The crew replied that they did not intend to obey the order, in virtue of a treaty between the two countries. The magistrate was obliged to go in person; whereupon the English slew not only the officer but the magistrate as well, and fourteen of his men; then setting sail they took refuge in Bircoe (Vicente de la Barquera ?). This is a matter of great importance; the embargo would not have been imposed except for very serious reasons; for between the Basques, the French, the English and the Portuguese there exists a specicd treaty forbidding the imposition of an embargo under any circumstances, in order to encourage the free exchange of merchandize and provisions between these people. It is possible that the embargo was ordered under the conviction that Drake had already seized the Peruvian fleet, and was an act of reprised with a view to compelling the Queen of England to restore that fleet and to punish Brake; but, on the other hand, when Brake, on another occasion, carried out a similar enterprise, by which he acquired a million in gold of the King's money, no embargo was imposed so as not to place the Basques and Portuguese in straits for grain and other things which they get by way of France and England (pu esser che questa nasca da Drago inglese, dubitandosi che possi fin hora haver fatta la presa della flotta, onde per rifarsi et per necessitar la Regina d' Inghilterra a fargli restituir et che costui sia castigato, si pensa che questi habbino voluto fare la sopradetta ritentione; ma dall' altra parte, quando Draco fece un altra volta la medesima impresa nella quale gi guadagna un milione d'oro solo del Re, non si vene a questa ritentione per non constituir quelli di Biscaglia et Portogcdlo in necessit grandissima del viver per il mancamento che hanno grandissimo de grani et altre cose delle quali si provedono per via di Francia et Inghilterra). And, again, if Drake's action be the real cause of the embargo it is difficult to see what blame can attach to the French.
Saragoza, 19th June 1585.
[Italian; deciphered.]
June 22. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 277. Giovanni Francesco Moresini and Lorenzo Bernardo, Venetian Ambassadors in Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
A few days ago the English Ambassador sent a secretary to visit me. He used terms of courtesy and regard, to which I replied in a suitable manner ; and sent my secretary to return the visit. In the course of his remarks the Ambassador complained that the Turks damaged English shipping, and remained unpunished.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, 22nd May 1585.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]