Venice
December 1618, 6-10

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1909

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370-380

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'Venice: December 1618, 6-10', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 15: 1617-1619 (1909), pp. 370-380. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88689 Date accessed: 02 September 2014.


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December 1618

Dec. 6.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Constantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
621. ALMORO NANI, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The report that the Barbary pirates had taken the two gentlemen sent by his Most Christian Majesty proves to be false, as they arrived here on the 28th ult. I at once sent to congratulate them. The French ambassador sent a relation to tell me that they had the character of ambassadors and to suggest that I should call upon them. I pretended not to understand what he meant. Thereupon the French ambassador went to the English ambassador to get him to call, as he did on the following day, though I cannot be sure if he visited them separately or together. I sent a member of my household to ask him what had been done. He replied that the French ambassador had called upon him and after a short conversation had said: I should like these gentlemen to come and visit you, and I should be glad if you will return the visit, because as the representatives of my king they have no less authority than myself. The English ambassador replied that it was not his business to investigate their commissions, but he accepted his Excellency's statement and would recognise them as ambassadors. Thereupon the French ambassador asked him to call upon them first and to come on the following day, as after that they wished to go all together to the Pasha. England promised to go and promised to see the ambassador of Flanders about it, so that they both visited these gentlemen on the same day. The French ambassador, however, was not present, saying that they were not ambassadors, but only sent by his Most Christian Majesty to treat of some affairs with the Porte. The English ambassador concluded by remarking that he could not understand what motives the French ambassador might have for his conduct. I myself have not been to see them and I do not intend to after what has befallen the ambassadors of England and Flanders.
Dalle Vigne di Pera, the 6th December, 1618.
[Italian.]
Dec. 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
622. ANTONIO DONATO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The commissioners and deputies from Holland, who were sent off many days ago to cross to this kingdom, have not yet arrived owing to the contrary winds which prevail which are very cold and prevent the crossing. The king has given orders that they are to be met and received in the same manner as is used with the ambassadors of kings. The one who has charge of this, an old man of long experience, marvels that the government of the United Provinces has made such strides in a few years, for whereas at first they approached his Majesty as subjects their lord, in very humble fashion, now they treat as equals; but power and wealth have caused this, in which those States increase every day, with a corresponding growth of prestige. The desire of good men that this conference may establish something beneficial gives rise to much discourse. I will keep myself on the alert to send full information to your Excellencies. But the chief point and the one which most concerns the whole of Europe is that these nations should join in spirit and friendship to trouble the common enemy in concert and vex him in his bowels and vitals with all their power. This is certainly an affair of the highest importance and exceedingly desirable in order to free Italy from all her ills and suspicions. God grant that I may soon be able to send good news to your Serenity. I will not fail either, even without your express instructions, to use my good offices with the king, the ministers and the Dutch to forward the union between these two powers, so important and helpful for the interests of your Excellencies. The question simply turns upon removing the rivalry for glory between the English and the Dutch, since neither will concede to the other supremacy in the field or in skill in navigation, and both are determined to devote their attentions to enterprises in the Indies, forming three fleets of ships, changing them every year and very considerably disturbing the stream of so much gold to the Spaniards, by entering themselves to take a share.
The king remains at Newmarket and will not return before Christmas. Perhaps this is the reason why the commissioners tarry, as they desire his Majesty's presence at the negotiations, as according to report they have other matters of the gravest import to discuss with him.
The queen is somewhat better with the hope of improvement. This gives satisfaction to all owing to her universal popularity among the people.
The Secretary Lionello has left for home after a long course of good service. He is most apt at everything and returns with the most intimate acquaintance with the affairs of this kingdom and with the king's disposition and ideas.
I have received your Serenity's letters of the 3rd ult. with the news of current events, which I will use for your profit upon occasion.
London, the 7th December, 1618.
[Italian.]
Dec. 7.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
623. ANTONIO DONATO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
A person of great authority in this kingdom, through an Italian, has informed me of the things that your Serenity shall hear, and I think it proper to report them so that you may give your prudent consideration to the matter. Even if the thing does not take place or is not so much as attempted, yet foreknowledge and preparation can never do any harm. This person told me that a Frenchman sent here by M. de Manti had made arrangements here to buy a very fine first rater from some merchants for 4,000l. sterling, equal to 16,000 crowns, and that the agreement has not been completed and no further steps have been taken owing to the strained relations between the two crowns and the fear that they will not be able to obtain permission to take the ships away or the necessary apparatus to sail her. The Frenchman has the money ready in the hands of the merchants and he is awaiting an opportunity to complete his purchase. He has already enlisted the sailors and bought the equipment, and he has with him a captain, also French, to command the ship. He adds that this M. de Manti is the Marseilles man who bought another large ship a few weeks ago at Enkhuizen (Ancuse) in Holland, which through the carlessness of the sailors came to grief when leaving the Texel. It was armed entirely with bronze ordnance and with a huge quantity of gunpowder and matches. The said Manti performed his operations in the name of the Duke of Guise and the King of France, but the truth was that all these preparations were for the Spaniards as the French had no reason at present to trouble about maritime affairs and the remittance of 4,000l. really came from Spain by letters of merchants of the Catholic Court. It will be easy to obtain information about these and their correspondents. He added something of the utmost gravity and importance, that the two Frenchmen here said that at the first opportunity Manti will attempt to occupy Ragusa and will do so easily owing to his thorough acquaintance with that town and its situation, because in the time of the late King Henry he stayed at Ragusa for a whole year with one companion. That four large ships with a scirocco tide would break the walls of the town with their artillery and then await the arrival of the body of the fleet to occupy the town; that Manti will have permission to use the French flag, on account of which the republic of Venice will have to accept the action in order not to declare against the two crowns. He concluded by stating that the purchase would be made and the money come from Spain.
I told my informant that I was glad of the information, because it came from the affection of a person highly esteemed by the republic and by myself, but it mattered little that the Spaniards should use a trick to arm under cover of the French when they themselves could obtain what they wanted in this kingdom, the point was to prevent them from accumulating such armaments and to speak out freely so as not to allow an increase in the injuries which they inflict with them upon the friends and confidents of this crown, and the question of Ragusa did not touch the republic. I thanked him and used similar complimentary phrases.
The man replied that he thought his master wished to advise me of everything, so that your Serenity might be warned of the suspicion that the French may help the designs of the Spaniards and of Ossuna at sea and that the loss of Ragusa would mean more to the republic than to any one else. For the rest he could tell me nothing else except that his master will always endeavour to satisfy your Serenity. I will try and see this gentleman, though it is no easy matter, and will report all to your Excellencies. For the moment I will not disclose the person's name, for sufficient reasons. He is a member of the Council and very well inclined and an enemy of the Spaniards. He has negotiated in very friendly wise with the Ambassador Contarini and his predecessors. I do not see, however, how I can take any steps against these purchases by the French without the express commands of your Serenity, but I will observe their proceedings as much as possible, the purchase, if it happens, and where the money comes from.
London, the 7th December, 1618.
[Italian.]
Dec. 8.
Senato,
Mar.
Venetian
Archives.
624. To the Captain General at Sea.
We enclose a copy of the request made by the ambassador of the King of Great Britain that the ships of England may be paid in this city and the money given to their agents. We also send you our reply to serve for information and to show to the captains and the Commissioner Michiel. We understand that the said commissioner proposes to withdraw from the obligation of the inspections, possibly because of our decision of the 25th ult., although our purpose was to have the inspections every month to regulate the payments by them. We are sending out Geronimo Morosini as commissioner in place of the Proveditore Venier, and he will look after this point, as the Senate is resolved to have the inspections every month from all the fleet, and desires the same to be done with the troops. Moreover, we do not wish the sending of the inspections to be delayed until the arrival of Morosini.
Ayes120.
Noes0.
Neutral6.
[Italian.]
Dec. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives,
625. GIROLAMO SORANZO, Venetian Ambassador at Rome to the DOGE and SENATE.
Cardinal Farnese has given me the enclosed memorial asking me to recommend it strongly to your Serenity. The person recommended is a devoted servant of his house, and all the favour that your Excellencies may grant him will be excellently expended.
Rome, the 8th December, 1618.
[Italian.]
Enclosed
in the
preceding
despatch.
626. Memorial of Cardinal Farnese for Geoffrey Pole.
Geoffrey Pole, grand-nephew of the late Cardinal Pole and of the blood royal of England, is very anxious to enter the service of the most serene republic, I ask your Excellency to inform his Serenity of his zeal and of his skill in military matters. He had experience for two years in Flanders in the company of Pompeo Giustiniani. There he received 40 crowns a month. He was present at all the actions during that time, and in particular at the taking of Vaettendom, Groblinghen and Remberg, as well as at the relief of Grol. I shall be glad if you will press this matter as the republic will honour herself in employing a person of such birth and qualifications. and will put him under a perpetual obligation as well as the whole English nation by whom he is most highly loved and esteemed.
[Italian.]
Dec. 8.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Germania.
Venetian
Archives.
627. ZORZI GIUSTINIAN, Venetian Ambassador in Germany, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Mr. Henry Bruce, a Scot, who commanded in the fortress of Gradisca in the siege during the recent war, being in the pay of the Archduke Maximilian, now that his Highness is dead, came to see me and offer his services to your Serenity. He said he has served for twenty-five years continuously in the wars of Flanders, and was in some command in all the principal sieges and battles which took place during that period. At the conclusion of the wars he came this way, in the expectance of some disturbance in Hungary, but as that did not happen, he stopped in the pay of the Archduke Maximilian. He claims an intimate knowledge of fortification. He said he had been a comrade during those wars of M. de Roccalora with whom a nephew of his is serving your Serenity, and from that gentleman you may easily find out all about him. He seemed to me to be especially bitter against the Spaniards, who paid the 600 foot whom he commanded in the war of Friuli. If he enters the service of your Serenity he will have some valuable information which I will try to obtain from him. He begged me to let him know your will as soon as possible.
Vienna, the 8th December, 1618. Copy.
[Italian.]
Dec. 8.
Senato.
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
628. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I am assured that the articles of the charter for the West India company have been sent to the provinces for confirmation. I have a copy of which I will send a translation to your Excellencies. Someone has told me that the commissioners, who left for England at the end of last week, will negotiate about this and possibly with the king himself. You will learn his Majesty's decision from that side. I have gathered nothing from his ambassador here except that he will be glad to hear of the accomplishment of this business owing to the damage which the Spaniards may suffer thereby. I am assured by others that if his Majesty concurs as is expected, he will consent to his subjects and merchants joining in, but it will be difficult to obtain a contribution in money from him such as the States will grant and such as they supply for the traffic in the East Indies. I am waiting to hear the replies from the provinces when I will advise your Serenity of everything.
The Hague, the 8th December, 1618.
[Italian.]
Dec. 8.
Commissario
in Armada
Misc. Cod. 382.
Venetian
Archives.
629. AGOSTINO MICHIEL, Venetian Commissioner with the fleet, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Sends copies of the agreements made in England, as instructed. Corfu, the 8th December, 1618.
[Italian.]
Enclosure.630. Articles of agreement made on 10th February, old style, in the 15th year of King James between Thomas Best Robert Palmer and Robert Tockley, owners of the good ship Matthew of London of the one part and Sig. Pietro Contarini, Venetian Ambassador Extraordinary to the King of Great Britain, for the hire of the said ship.
[Italian. 3 pp.]
Enclosure.631. Articles of agreement made on the 23rd February 1617, old style, between Nicholas Leat, Husbands, Christopher Nicholls, Thomas Lidell, Thomas Nicholls, Arnold Lulls, Daniel Shetterden, Antony Bennet, William Bright and Walter Whiting, owners of the good ship IIercules of London, of the one part, and the Ambassador Contarini, for the hire of the said ship.
[Italian; 3 pp.]
Enclosure.632. Articles of agreement made on the 25th February, 1617, old style, between Robert Stevens, Robert Palmer, John Neroman, John Bland, John Farrar, John Hale, Robert Madeson, Richard Bull and Thomas Francklin, owners of the good ship Abigail of London, of the one part, and the Ambassador Contarini, for the hire of the said ship.
[Italian; 4 pp.]
Enclosure.633. Articles of agreement made on the 10th February, 1617 old style, between John Dike and William Case, owners of the good ship Dragon of London and the Ambassador Contarini for the hire of the said ship.
[Italian; 4 pp.]
Enclosure.634. Articles of agreement made on the 7th March, 1617, old style, between Sir William Garway, knight, Henry Garway and William Garway, owners of the good ship Royal Exchange of London, of the one part, and the Ambassador Contarini, for the hire of the said ship.
[Italian; 4 pp.]
Enclosure.635. Articles of agreement made on the 10th February, 1617, old style, between George Maynwaring, esquire, owner of the good ship Anadem of London and the Ambassador Contarini, for the hire of the said ship.
[Italian; 4 pp.]
Enclosure.636. Articles of agreement between the Ambassador Contarini and Peter Richart and Ambrose Jennens, owners of the English galleon Centurion, master Richard Bourne, for that ship to serve the Venetian Republic.
[Italian; 3 pp.]
1618, in London.
Enclosure637. I, Piero Contarini, undertake to pay by remittances from the Secretary Surian at Amsterdam by letters of the 11th February20,000ducats=4,444l.10s.
Item taken here by Ricaut and paid at Venice
by letters of 7 Feb. to Guadagni 1,000 "
to Manelli 1,000 "
to Van Uffes and Van Meer 6,000 "
8,000 "
Valued at 55 ½ pence 8,000 " 1,850l.
Item 10 March from Burlamachi, payable at Venice to Guadagni at 55 pence 8,000 " 1,833l. 6s. 8d.
Item on 11 March from Vandeput paid at Venice to the same at 55 pence 4,300 " 985l. 8s. 4d.
Item on 11 March from Burlamachi and Vandeput payable at Venice to Vandeput at 55 pence 8,000 " 1,833l. 6s. 8d.
Item on 6th April from Burlamachi payable at Venice to Vandeput at 55 pence 6,000 " 1,375l.
Item on 23rd April from Burlamachi, payable at Venice to Vandeput at 55 pence 7,051 ducats 22 lire 1,616l. 1s. 4d.
Total 61,351 ducats 22 lire= 13,937l. 13s. 0d.
I, Piero Contarini, have to pay on 27 Feb. to the owners of the ship Centurion for wages for 3 months at 355l. the month 1,068l.
To the owners of the ship Dragon for 3 months at 355l the month 1,068l.
To the owners of the ship Abigail for 3 months at 400l. the month 1,200l.
To the owners of the ship Hercules for 3 months at 400l. the month 1,200l.
To the owners of the ship Anadem for 4 months at 355l. the month 1,420l.
To the owners of the ship Royal Exchange for 3 months at 450l. the month 1,350l.
16 Ap. to the maker of the flags of St. Mark, 7 for battle and 7 for other service 46l. 4s.
8 Ap. to Wm. Filgette for powder balls, rope, etc., for ships and soldiers as by enclosed account 946l. 18s.
To Col. Peyton and Capts. Belinglei and Masodat for levying the 500 men 500l.
To buying arms for the men at 25s. a head, to be deducted from wages 625l.
To four payments in advance 3,310l. 6s.
To Ricaut for provision of 8.000 ducats 9l. 5s.
Total 13,937l. 13s.
[Italian.]
Dec. 8.
Commissairo
in Armada.
Misc. Cod. 392.
Venetian
Archives.
638. Munitions consigned by the Ambassador Contarini to Roger Penrork, gunner of the ship Habighal to render account to the ministers of your Serenity.
For four half culverins 100 round shot.
For 12 sakers 300 "
For 10 minions 250 "
650 "
For the half culverins 20 spiked shot.
For the sakers 60 "
For the minions 50 "
130 "
For the culverins 16 chain shot.
For the sakers 48 "
For the minions 20 "
84 "
22 barrels of powder of 112 lbs.—16 ozs. to the lb.
Iron cubes 200 lbs.
Musket shot 600 lbs.
Royal paper 12 quires.
Wooden cases 8 dozen.
Starch for paste 6 lbs.
Iron wire 2 lbs.
Tamkins for guns 10 dozen.
Rope 150 lbs.
Munitions consigned by the Ambassador Contarini to Mr. Thomas Holt, gunner of the ship Centurion, who is bound to render account to the ministers of the republic.
Munitions consigned by his Excellency to John Jackson, gunner of the ship Matthew, etc.
Munitions consigned by his Excellency to Mr. Pegorye, gunner of the ship Royal Exchange, etc.
Munitions consigned by his Excellency to Mr. W_, gunner of the ship Dragon, etc.
Munitions consigned by his Excellency to Mr. Clark, gunner of the ship Hercules, etc.
Munitions consigned by his Excellency to Mr. John Wolcot, gunner of the ship Annadam, etc.
[Various quantities.]
[Italian.]
Dec. 10.
Consiglio
de' X.
Parti
Secrete.
Venetian
Archives.
639. To the Ambassador in England.
Send information received of the alleged conversation between Sir [Henry] Mainwaring and the Spanish ambassador at that time in England, when the latter tried to prevent the former from coming to serve the republic. Order to use all diligence to discover what truth there may be in this story, and to send word of this and of anything else that he may hear on good grounds, acknowledging the receipt of these presents.
Ayes16.
Noes0.
Neutral0.
Dec. 10.
Consiglio
de' X.
Parti
Secrete.
Venetian
Archives.
640. To the Ambassador in England.
If you recognise from the nature of the documents of which you and the Ambassador Contarini wrote to us on 16 November last, that they are clearly copies of what we have in the secret Chancery here, you will see that they are burned in your presence, for the reasons given in the said letters, but if after careful examination you find some original documents or some which you are not certain to be in the said chancery, you will take them out and made a special inventory of them, burning all the others; and you will send full particulars of what you have done to the heads of the Council.
Ayes16.
Noes0.
Neutral0.
[Italian.]
Dec. 10.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
641. RANIER ZEN, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The duke spoke to me with great satisfaction of the news received from France. He went on to speak with great passion saying that he felt sure the marriage would be concluded between England and Spain; the disagreement between the French and English crowns only grew worse and the Spaniards are now more eager than ever to arrange with England that they see the prince his son allied with France, as they would find their position intolerable if England also were ill affected towards them, as England single-handed could do more to disturb them than any other power whatsoever (potendole più lei sola, che qualsisia altro potentato muover et messerli in confusione), and now they were agreeing to worse conditions in order to divert England from stirring up affairs in Bohemia and moving the princes of Germany, with whom she is so closely connected.
He told me that shortly before (and I have seen them in the streets) six Jesuits had been here, among them the famous prisoner of the King of England, who had all been released at the instance of the Spanish ambassador. They told his Highness that they had all been released from prison at once and sent to the ambassador's house, where they were received, although the ambassador is not there now. They were visited by many of the leading men of court of the Spanish faction, including some Catholics, of whom there are many in the kingdom and in London. These are eagerly looking forward to the marriage, which they consider assured. The Jesuit fathers are going to Rome, where they will bring their influence to bear upon the pope in favour of the marriage and of the Spanish interests. In short, the duke is very much upset by this news, both for reasons of state and also, I think, for the marriage of one of the infantas. If the agent arrives in time his Highness still cherishes great hopes, both from the friendship which he has always enjoyed with the king and from the influence of the Palatine, with whom he has always had a good understanding.
Turin, the 10th December, 1618.
[Italian.]
Dec. 10.
Consiglio
de' X.
Parti
Secrete.
Venetian
Archives.
642. In the Council of Ten.
That the following be communicated by a secretary of this Council to the Savii of the Cabinet, after enjoining due secrecy, and that a copy be left with them, and that it be also communicated to the Senate if they see fit.
We have heard from an individual who has proved trustworthy upon other occasions that when Sir [Henry] Mainwaring (Manarino) was negotiating to come and serve this republic, the Spanish ambassador offered a strenuous opposition, appearing at the Council table in England and declaring that it was not right that he should go to serve a power hostile (nimico) to his king. And because Mainwaring had previously been a pirate and inflicted great losses on the Spaniards, the ambassador one day said to him: I will get my king to pardon you, but do not go and serve the Venetians. Know that my king will soon have territory in the state of the Venetians, and I have orders, like all other ministers of his Majesty, to do my utmost to forward the plans of the Duke of Ossuna. When Sir [Henry] asked: What, is it so easy to catch Venice napping ? the ambassador replied: It is a strong city, but when it is disarmed we shall arm under another pretext, and the acquisition will be made in that way. Let the Duke of Ossuna alone.
This conversation took place some months ago, and now this Spanish ambassador has left London Sir [Henry] Mainwaring has come to Venice.
Ayes16.
Noes0.
Neutral0.
This communication was read in the Cabinet on the 11th and a copy left in the hands of the Secretary Rizzardo. (fn. 1)
[Italian.]
Dec. 10.
Inquisitori di
Stato.
Dispacci,
dagli Ambasri.
in Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
643. ANTONIO DONATO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the INQUISITORS OF STATE.
According to instructions I have recognised Angelo Nodaro, a musician of Padua, who rendered good service to the Secretary Lionello. He is a man of poor condition, but of great wit, and is received familiarly at the house of the ministers of Spain. He knows how to profit by his opportunities.
From London, the 10 December, 1618.
[Italian; deciphered.]

Footnotes

1 The copy is preserved in the series Senato, Secreta, Communicazioni dal Consiglio de' Dieci.