Venice: July 1592

Pages 41-44

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 9, 1592-1603. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1897.

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July 1592

July 7. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 88. Giovanni Mocenigo, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Flemish and English who are with the King raise difficulties when ordered to march. They declare that they were sent into France for the sole purpose of besieging Rouen, and as that undertaking is now abandoned they wish to return home. The King has sent M. de Senescey (Sensi) (fn. 1) to England to prove to the Queen that it is not for the interests of France to press that city at this moment. He will also inform her Majesty that the King is compelled to seek peace owing to the expense of the present war and the confusion created by Spain. The real object of this declaration is to show the Queen that she ought to have rendered more assistance at the siege of Rouen which was undertaken for her sole benefit.
Chartres, 7th July 1592.
[Italian; deciphered.]
July 10. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 89. Matheo Zane, Venetian Ambassador in Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
The English Ambassador has received from the Queen, his mistress, and from the King of Navarre letters dated April last and addressed to the Sultan and the Grand Vizir. The purport of the letters was to disuade the Sultan from concluding a truce with the King of Spain by pointing out in the strongest terms the indignity and loss which would result to this Growssn. The Grand Vizir has placed the letters in the hands of the Dragoman to be translated. They will not be presented to the Sultan till Bairam is over, especially since their contents have already been communicated by word of mouth. The Ambassador, however, desires that they should be presented at once in order to arrest present negotiations for a truce. It is possible that these letters may have weight in inducing the Sultan to lend no ear to Spain, and to despatch a large fleet next year. The English Ambassador strains every nerve to that end. It is true that he is in some embarrassment owing to the fact that last year he interfered to obtain for Aron of Moldavia the Principality of Bogdania. Aron has since been removed and the Ambassador finds himself, not embroiled, it is true, in the promises which Aron had not time to keep, but deprived of the great advantage he would have gained had Aron proceeded to the actual government of that territory. And although his mission here for the Queen of England and the King of Navarre is favourably regarded by the Turks, as bringing to them additional glory, all the same the Ambassador is bound to lose his influence as he is now involved in affairs which are far removed from the true sphere of his action and which affect the interests of this Growssn. The Prince of Bogdania, on his way through Constantinople, was refused an audience, his goods were taken from him, and he was interned in Aleppo.
M. de Breves, who is here for Navarre, has made up his mind to go to the Sultan and to relate all that he has done in the case of M. de Lancome, who represented the League. He desires, with the help of the Porte, to obtain the post of Ambassador from the King of Navarre, or at least to create such a post for someone else. Meanwhile, thanks to his many services, especially in securing the liberty of Turkish slaves, he has received a concession for the free export of grain, and has hired ships which were to load in Greece; the Pasha, however, has not issued the necessary orders yet.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, 10th July 1592.
[Italian; deciphered.]
July 18. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 90. Tomaso Contarini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
News has reached the French Bishop, the Guise's Agent at this Court and the other Agents of the League, that the King of Navarre has obtained some successes. This has roused the suspicion that the Duke of Parma has orders not to fight, for they affirm that on more than one occasion he declined to give battle. They lament the unhappy state of France, torn in pieces by its own children and despoiled by foreigners; and declare that the election of a Catholic Sovereign is the only remedy possible. In that sense they have again approached his Majesty with a new petition. He has always shown himself disposed to take the necessary steps; and in dismissing the said Bishop he has assigned to the Duke of Guise eight thousand crowssns a month for the maintenance of his person and his house, exhorting him at the same time to convene the States for the election of a new King. But as his Majesty will not say a word upon the subject of his own candidate, many people suspect that his actions and his thoughts are not really at one.
Promise has also been given to send part of the army of Aragon into France, and to subvention the League anew, but though this Bishop has applied for the institution of two hundred thousand crowssns which the Duke of Guise declares were spent by his father on the promise from his Majesty that they should be made good, he has not succeeded in recovering them as yet.
The Bishop has taken his leave, he received a diamond cross worth five hundred crowssns, and in addition to this he has asked for money for his journey, declaring that he has spent all he brought with him; he has received six hundred crowssns.
The ocean fleet is being got ready, part to go to the Azores to await the West India flotilla, part to clear the seas of English pirates who do not cease to infest it. Don Alonzo de Bazan has gone to Lisbon to superintend the preparations.
Madrid, 18th July 1592.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
July 18. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 91. Matheo Zane, Venetian Ambassador in Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
Aron, the deposed Prince of Bogdania, was brought prisoner to Constantinople by Janizaries. The Sultan gave orders that he was not to enter the city, but the Janizaries disobeyed, and brought Aron into the city with great uproar. The Sultan in alarm at the mutiny deposed Alexander, the newly elected Prince, and restored Aron.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, 18th July 1592.
[Italian; deciphered.]
July 27. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 92. Matheo Zane, Venetian Ambassador in Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
M. de Breves communicated to me three days ago a letter addressed by the Grand Vizir to the King of Navarre.
De Breves declared that as a private individual he could not meddle with public matters which were under the protection of the English Ambassador. I learn that the letters of the Queen of England contain two other topics besides the exclusion of Spain from the truce; one is the despatch of a fleet to Toulon next year; the other is the establishment of a French Ambassador here. One is to be sent as soon as possible.
No reply has been given on these points as M. de Breves does not insist, and the English Ambassador is so completely occupied with the affairs of Bogdania that he has no time to think of anything else.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, 27th July 1592.
[Italian; deciphered.]
July 28. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 93. Tomaso Contarini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
On the 18th instant a vessel from the East Indies entered the port of Lisbon. It brought news that four other vessels are on their way from those parts. This one parted company at the Cape of Good Hope and reached Lisbon without touching at St. Elena where it is usual to stop and refit. This ship avoided St. Elena, and so will the others, from fear of the English corsairs, which were said to be lying in wait at that island in order to plunder all ships coming from the East Indies with rich cargoes of spices and other goods, as your Serenity will gather from the statement which I enclose.
Madrid, 28th July 1592.
July 28. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 94. Tomaso Contarini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
Don Alfonzo d'Idiaquez, Colonel in the Spanish army in France, and son of Don Juan d'Idiaquez, left the camp of the Duke of Parma because he was ill satisfied with his Excellency. From that moment the Duke began to lose the favour he enjoyed with his Majesty and the Councils of State; and the Spanish are spreading reports with a view to still further damaging him in the estimation of the King. They declare that he took pleasure in annihilating the Spanish troops which are harder worked and worse paid than the rest of the army, and that he did all he could to disgust the Spanish officers so that they might be induced to leave the camp and so to secure a free field for the Duke to carry on everything as best suited himself. But as yet his Majesty has shown no marks of his disapproval.
Madrid, 28th July 1592.
[Italian; deciphered.]


  • 1. Claude Charles de Baufremont, Baron of Senescey, Bishop of Troyes.