Venice: September 1592

Pages 46-47

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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September 1592

Sept. 12, Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 100. Tomaso Contarini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
News from Lisbon that one of the four ships coming from the East Indies parted company and put into a port of the Isle of Corvo. This port is unprotected, and some English ships which were cruising about there sailed in and attacked the East Indiaman. The crew, unable to defend themselves, fled on shore after having fired the ship, which was burned with all her cargo, valued at a a million and a half of gold, and including a large quantity of pepper belonging to the King. They were counting upon selling this at once, and now that this is impossible, there will arise much difficulty in the finances.
They are awaiting the arrival of the other ships, but with anxiety, for the English are still in those waters, and indeed news has come from Lisbon that nine Englishmen attacked the flagship of the East India fleet and another ship, which had cargoes worth three millions of gold. If this is true, it will bring great ruin chiefly on the city of Lisbon.
Madrid, 12th September 1592.
Sept. 12. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 101. Tomaso Contarini, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the Doge and Senate.
The supercargo of the “Sumachi” found that just before he reached Cadiz with the King's order for the release of the ship, the Adelantado had issued a sentence confiscating all the cargo on the ground that it was English property.
Madrid, 12th September 1592.
Sept. 17. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 102. Giovanni Mocenigo, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
M. de Senescey (Sensi) writes from England that he has obtained from the Queen the promise to send three thousand infantry, paid for six months, into France.
Chartres, 17th September 1592.
[Italian; deciphered.]
Sept. 19. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 103. Leonardo Donato, Venetian Ambassador in Rome, to the Doge and Senate.
His Holiness told me that he had read in the Gazette news which he really believed to be a canard (menantaria, menanti si chiam ano qui quelli che scrivono li fogli de avisi che vanno per le piazze). All the same, in case it might prove to be true, he said he would communicate it to me, and it is this, that your Serenity is thinking of sending a noble as Agent to England in order to purchase grain. His Holiness said that he was aware that not long ago your Serenity had thought of sending an Ambassador but had abandoned the idea. If this Agent went now it would cause great suspicion in his own mind and in that of the King of Spain, and people would say that grain was not the only object of the mission. If it were absolutely necessary to send to England, a merchant would do quite well as Agent, instead of a noble whose presence would imply ulterior consequences. And if your Serenity's attitude towards the Turk were such as to arouse suspicion, that was a reason the more for not rousing further suspicion as regards other Princes.
Undoubtedly the object of his Holiness is to prevent your Serenity from sending a representative to the Court of that most heretical Queen.
Rome, 19th September 1592.
Sept. 19. Original Despatch, Venetian Archives. 104. Matheo Zane, Venetian Ambassador in Constantinople, to the Doge and Senate.
Those who are acting for the King of Navarre have orders to continue their efforts to secure the formation of a fleet of at least one hundred galleys for next year. That number would be sufficient, they say, to hamper the designs of the King of Spain and of the League. They have talked upon this point with the Sultan's secretary and other Ministers of importance, and the answer received was that the King should hasten to send a resident Ambassador to Constantinople for the honour and dignity of the Porte, and if he comes during this winter there will be time enough. The Turks themselves admit that there is some question of an attack on Malta.
The Sultan has resolved to give no answer to the letters of Count Marigliani. He is influenced by the opinion of his secretary rather than by that of the Grand Vizir. The secretary is opposed to the conclusion of a truce with Spain. The secretary is old and very rich and has acquired his influence by assisting others to riches. Under cloak of religion he interferes in affairs of State.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, 19th September 1592.
[Italian; deciphered.]