Venice
June 1623, 2-13

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

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1912

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27-39

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'Venice: June 1623, 2-13', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 18: 1623-1625 (1912), pp. 27-39. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88888 Date accessed: 01 August 2014.


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Contents

June 1623

June 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
42. ALVISE VALARESSO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
There is no further news from Spain. Everybody has fore bodings of ill, but no one knows any particulars. The king only speaks with evident art and dissimulation. One of the leading members of the Council, a friend of mine, asked me earnestly for news from Spain, being as much in the dark as the vulgar.
Among the other disadvantages of this change, the greatest is the futility of obtaining confidants to get information, as every one is equally shut out from the most intimate deliberations. Of what happens in Spain, which is now of the most importance I can only send what is of varying certainty and what is sure to be late, because I receive it by an oblique and practically underground method. However, I must not neglect to state that I have learned from a person come from Spain about a month ago say that he heard the prince himself assert that if the marriage was not arranged in a month, he did not want or would not have the infanta, he was not sure which. The prince has written to the Marquis of Hamilton that he knows full well that his journey to Spain seemed strange to many but assures him that it will never lead to any action that shall cause honest men to blush for him. I have learned that the prince's office and the infanta's reply were arranged before being performed.
The Earl of Carlisle has returned after a slow journey of more than a month. He expresses general and courtiers' opinions. He got little satisfaction but conceals this. The ships have left the river to start whenever ordered. Instructions are delayed, however, until the arrival of fresh news which, according to the king, should announce the marriage as made or the day appointed for it. The Lord Chamberlain said to me the other day that if the prince did not return with the infanta, he might decide to leave with the four ships already there without waiting for this fleet. I report this but do not believe it, or at least the prince will find it easier to wish it than to do so.
They have begun to build the chapel. His Majesty has made Buckingham a duke, moved by his customary affection, an old promise and perhaps some new interest in current affairs. It should be an unauspicious honour for they recall that the last bearer of the title was beheaded. The Duke of Lennox, a duke of Scotland, to keep him the first place in England also has been made Duke of Richmond; his patent is made out to precede that of Buckingham. (fn. 1) The Earl of Arundel and some others who aspired to similar promotion are somewhat dissatisfied.
A great discord has arisen among the merchants of the West India Company trading in Virginia. The company consists in particular of many lords and gentlemen. The origin of the dispute is supposed to be due to the king's arts, either because he hates all assemblies, and this one in particular, composed of good Englishmen, foes to the Spaniards and consequently little to the taste of the present government, or possibly from a desire to please these same Spaniards, who persecute the company, owing among other things to the dominion which they claim over all the Indies, to the exclusion of all others. The dissolution of the company is feared and that would be a great blow both on account of trade and for reasons of state, as the company has an island called Bermuda, which would be a post well adapted to harass the Plate fleet with a few ships. (fn. 2)
The king and ministers are very wroth about the burning of the Dunkirk vessel by the Dutch; indeed they have unfortunately aroused great resentment without profiting much, as the Spaniards lost nothing but the bare ship. The Dutch vow that their admiral had no share in the business, it was done against his will by two other ships. They have answered that he was present and did not prevent it as he should. It does not seem far fetched to suppose that the Spaniards themselves brought about this accident, either to get the men by freely abandoning the ship or to create ill feeling between England and Holland. I have tried my good offices with some of the gentlemen, the Dutch Ambassador hopes much from them, but I do not think it so easy.
The French ambassador says that the Emperor's ambassador in Spain is making a to-do about the marriage with England. He threatens that the emperor will go to a sister of the Most Christian as a wife for his son. I replied that this might prove more advantageous than any other alliance, owing to the benefit of such a connection and the harm done to the Spaniards by depriving them of the marriage.
A cavalier, a friend of mine, tells me that the king continues to jest about the intentions of the Most Christian in the affairs of the league. As he is a very honest gentleman, and also a friend of the French ambassador, I contrived that this should reach that ambassador, but the decisions about the money given to the Dutch, the stores conceded to Mansfeld and the internal quiet of France, are earnests of great good.
London, the 2nd June, 1623.
[Italian.]
June 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
43. ALVISE VALARESSO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I enclose a proposal made by a certain merchant for restoring the trade of our mart to its former prosperity. I recognise the magnitude of the proposal and the difficulty of the task. However, I could not altogether suppress what the wisdom of the state must decide upon. The office comes from an individual who seems better versed in trade and travel than endowed with capital. I am also aware that there are many things here prejudicial to free trade in the goods of our state. But the evil is an old one and the present season is not adapted for remedies. A ship has arrived with a quantity of silk from the Indies, and two are expected with some 6,000 bales.
London, the 2nd June, 1623.
[Italian.]
Note at the bottom of the page.
1623, the 6th July, that the Cinque Savii alla Mercantia reply upon the present letter and the enclosed copy by order of the Collegio, after taking the necessary information.
[Italian.]
Enclosed in the preceding despatch.44. Everyone knows how famous was the trade of Venice in the past, it was like a warehouse for all the world to which people flocked, even from the most remote parts of the world, to buy and sell. This great trade has now much declined, so that where the English, Dutch and others formerly went to that city for spices and other goods, the city now has to buy these goods of those to whom she used to sell, simply because the Dutch, English and others have found a way to the Indies, whence they fetch these spices to England, the Netherlands and other places, which are afterwards distributed in Germany, Poland, in many parts of Italy, and even in Venice. A ship has recently reached London and two more are expected at any moment, bringing an enormous quantity of merchandise and especially 2,500 bales of silk.
I know how his Serenity would rejoice to revive your former trade and bring it back to Venice, and as one devoted to his Serenity, though unknown for the moment, I propose to show that this can be done easily by sending two or three ships to the Indies every year as the English, Dutch, Danes, French and others do. This journey takes them sixteen or eighteen months, with great peril and hardship, but I will show how it can be done easily and safely in about five months. It will realise a profit of 300 per cent. and more, as I have great experience in this voyage and a perfect knowledge of the countries and peoples, and especially of the kings. I assure his Serenity that they would be welcomed by the king's and the ships well treated, the Venetians having a good name among the people.
I offer to indicate this easily and certain means of restoring the ancient trade of the state and to demonstrate the manner, if the Senate will decide, in case the greater part of the merchandise now carried to Holland, England and other countries is taken to that city of Venice, to give to me or my agent 24 ducats per cent. of all the merchandise taken from the state of Venice to the Indies and that brought by the said vessels from the Indies to the said state for twenty-five years only. If this decision is taken I will come to Venice immediately to point out to his Serenity the full particulars, and I will go in person upon the said ships and point out what is necessary for the benefit of this trade and of his Serenity.
[Italian.]
June 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia,
Venetian
Archives.
45. ANDREA ROSSO, Venetian Secretary in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The marriage said to be in negotiation between Madame, his Majesty's sister and the emperor's son, remains in its first stages, without any enthusiasm.
Paris, the 2nd June, 1623.
[Italian.]
June 2.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Ceffalonia.
Venetian
Archives.
46. ANDREA MOROSINI, Venetian Proveditore of Cephalonia, to the DOGE and SENATE.
There are about thirty persons in the island of Cephalonia with property from 10,000 ducats up to 100,000, mostly made by the present possessors. The peasants are wretchedly poor, as in order to maintain their families they have recourse to the leading men for money. They obtain a little but also cloth, to wit, London at 32 lire the braccio and Kersey at 12 lire the braccio. When they go to the public pier to buy wheat from the people of the mainland they barter this cloth at very low prices, to wit, London at 8 lire and Kersey at 3 lire, so your Serenity may consider the loss they incur. The trading men afterwards barter the raisins to the English and Flemings for cloth at the rate of a sequin or thereabouts, to wit, the London and the Kerseys at about six lire, so that the peasantry are reduced to the utmost necessity and want. The poor do not go and make complaint to justice either because they fear ill treatment from their creditors or that these will not help them in greater distress. The debts they incur are paid in raisins, but they are reduced to have them entered, and if they do not pay, the few lands they hold are seized for a low price. The raisins are subsequently appraised by the creditors at their own prices. In consequence of this there is never any money in the lockers of the fines (condanne), so that the governor (Reggimento) can hardly obtain his salary, as when the tax-gatherer goes out to collect the fines he finds little or no property in the houses. The cloth from the west is the ruin of the island, to the amount of 80,000 ducats a year. This has happened for the last four years, so that it is impossible to collect the customs, the island being full of cloth, which has come for three or four years instead of money.
I reserve other matters to tell your Serenity on my return home, for the benefit of your customs both at Venice and at the island.
Cephalonia, the 2nd June, 1623, old style.
Note dated the 7th August, 1623.
By order of the Most Excellent Savii, the Cinque Savii alla Mercanzia shall answer upon oath.
[Italian.]
VETTOR BARBARO, Secretary.
June 2.
Cinque Savii
alla
Mercanzia.
Risposte.
Venetian
Archives.
47. With respect to the letter of Antonio da Ponte, Proveditore General in the three islands of the Levant, of the 25th March last about the grievances and extortions in the matter of the new customs of raisins inflicted by an Englishman named Simoneto Vuet Comté, long a resident at Zante, who has made himself agent for his nation and done great prejudice to the trade in raisins, chiefly by the amount of smuggling that he commits, we think it best to leave all decision and action in the matter to the Proveditore himself, who can bring this Simoneto to trial and punish him by banishment or otherwise, as he may consider best.
We have not enough information to form an opinion about the excessive planting of vines, the other matter referred to in the Proveditore's letter aforesaid.
Marco Zustinian.Savii.
Alvise Basadonna.
Lorenzo Valier.
[Italian.]
June 3.
Senato.
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
48. ALVISE CORNER, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
When everything seemed arranged for the English marriage, beyond all belief, a fresh event has thrown everything into suspense. Father Pedrosa, a celebrated preacher here, who has always argued against this marriage, used certain expressions when preaching the other day in the palace which some call too zealous, others over audacious, in which he warned his Majesty that he was acting rather from reasons of state than for the benefit of religion. He read from the book of Kings the story of the slaughter of the priests of Baal and how God reproved Ahab although the work was good in itself. Therefore as the marrying of the Infanta to the prince was a doubtful good, his Majesty ought to give the more earnest attention to securing the observance of the promises, showing that he had more fear than hope of the desired end. The king, after hearing the danger of loading his conscience, ordered a Junta of many learned divines to discuss the matter, but one side declared that the king ought not to bind himself by oath for the observation of the promises of others, especially as there are good grounds for believing that that sovereign will not keep them, as being opposed to the interests of his kingdom and to inveterate custom, and the Catholic ought not to undertake to compel him by force, as the king would have to consider, in case the eventuality occurred, whether he could keep his word. Some divines contended that his Majesty should take the oath with the intention to do everything in his power, in the event of the King of England breaking his promise, among them being Father Chiroga, provincial of the Capuchins, who has great influence with the Count of Olivares.
The king's fears has been increased by the publication of a prophecy from the 11th chapter of the book of Daniel, beginning at the words Confortabitur Rex Austri, (fn. 3) where they interpret this as the King of Spain of the House of Austria, who, by the advice of his favourite, as history relates, gives the Infanta to wife to the King of the North, interpreted as England, who treats her badly, giving rise to wars which result in the ruin of that Crown. This which is usually considered to mean Antiochus, who gave his daughter Cleopatra to Ptolemy King of Egypt, is applied to the Kings of Spain and England, although the one is not king of the north or the other of the south, but both of the west. Nevertheless the prophecy makes a deep impression and others are added, announcing extreme and terrible menaces of God if this marriage is concluded. It remains at present in suspense, but it is considered impossible that all misgivings will not ultimately disappear, and that Cottington will not leave soon to obtain the royal ratification, which they desire here to be settled.
The nuncio only presented the pope's brief to the prince two days ago. His Highness went to meet him as far as the stair, made him be seated and observed all ceremonies of precedence. He responded to the office demonstrating the greatest humility towards the pope, and expressing his sense of the favour, declaring that he would show this and it would appear in many things in England. When the nuncio remarked that he should not abuse the divine light, the prince declared that after the completion of the marriage he would hearken readily to the representations made to him about religion, but at present this was not permitted to him for various respects. The nuncio asserts that he showed himself well inclined. It is known that the brief gives him infinite satisfaction, and indeed his Holiness exhorts him to conversion with a large benevolence.
Madrid, the 3rd June, 1623.
[Italian.]
June 5.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
49. LORENZO PARUTA, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
There is an English gentleman here, George Gaie, who has recently been to Rome about the dispensation for the marriage of the Prince of Wales, and is returning home to relate what he did at that Court. He also went to pay respects, on behalf of his sovereign, to the Grand Duke of Tuscany and the Duke of Parma, upon their accession.
Turin, the 5th June, 1623.
[Italian.]
June 5.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
50. CHRISTOFFORO SURIAN, Venetian Secretary in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Spaniards are filling up their companies; for this they have some troops from the Palatinate, since it appears that an armistice has been arranged for fifteen months between the emperor, the Spaniards and the King of Great Britain for Germany and the Palatinate. On this point the King of Bohemia told me that he had not yet heard anything on the subject from the King of England, or whether he would have to sign it.
The Hague, the 5th June, 1623.
[Italian.]
June 9.
Senato.
Secreta,
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives
51. ALVISE VALARESSO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Last Sunday the Earl of Rutland and Lords Windsor and Morley took public leave of his Majesty to depart to their charges of the ships destined for Spain. They have a numerous company composed almost exclusively of Catholics and about 300 persons, including cavaliers and servants. They will wear magnificent clothes and rich liveries. The Court was full of Catholic gentlemen that day. The king, in a loud voice, urged their departure. He said that the earl ought to be waiting for a wind instead of the wind waiting for him, and the prince might be embarked before the ships reached those ports. These expressions are unskilful artifices, as at that time the king certainly had no news subsequent to what he received a fortnight ago, simply stating that nothing was settled though a settlement was near. I am bound to report these artifices though with the blush of one who relates a truth that has the appearance of a lie. The earl immediately went to his ship, although all the others were not at sea. They will go first to Portsmouth to take in fresh provisions there and possibly stay a few days. Each ship has about sixty pieces of ordnance and 250 men, except the prince's, which has 500. The expense amounts to 200l. sterling a day, or about 1,000 ducats. God grant that this great preparation be not in vain or may not serve the wishes of the Spaniards except in bringing back the prince.
The prince's chamberlain (fn. 4) returned on Wednesday, having left Spain about three weeks ago. I understand that he saw his master but little despite the privileges of his position. He is a strong Protestant but an honest man. Such qualities are in the way there and they gladly sent him back. They also expect the steward a similar person and therefore with like fortune. Every one who comes from Spain, as a general rule, is taught and commanded to speak rather as the king wishes than in accordance with the facts of the case. They all confine themselves to generalities. They say that all opposition is removed and the marriage near its completion, in fact all of the future, nothing of the present. But, as is generally the case in violent simulations one reads in their faces a truth different from what their tongues express. The prince is certainly well; he professes an ardent love for the Infanta. There is talk of a white dove which follows the prince wherever he goes. The Catholics call it the Holy Spirit, who desires his conversion. I have been told in confidence that they have hardly begun the negotiations; that the prince is tired of his stay there and anxious to return. The king himself has declared that when the day for the nuptials is fixed Viscount Rosford will come with the news; after the consummation, Lord Andover and when they move to depart, the Earl of Embich, and so from period to period they move to eternity, I do not know whether insensibly or voluntarily.
They have prepared a most noble palace for the Ambassador San Germano and apparently they expect him here at any moment, although, strange to say, it is certain that he has not started yet. The agent of Flanders has disclosed as a pledge of his early arrival that his silver has already come, but adds that as Viceroy of Navarre he will have to give orders in passing, and, owing to his weak state of health, he must necessarily travel slowly. In short the matter is far from concluded. The Spaniards will keep the prince as long as they like and here they will neither have the heart nor the tongue to ask or desire his return.
The Spaniards continue to make more and more fuss about their ship burned by the Dutch and accuse the king of being an accomplice, as although the Spanish ambassador frequently urged him to cause those vessels to issue from his ports, he would never issue the order and has therefore rendered himself to some extent responsible for what happened. So this, they say, may prevent the expedition of the marriage. Indeed every one cries out against the Dutch for this burning, but the king, to whom the Dutch ambassador spoke about it does not seem so very angry. He said that he was greatly offended and would expect satisfaction, without descending to particulars. He insists strongly that they should allow the one which still remains blockaded to come safely out. There are rumours, though I believe them false, that it has suffered the same fate as the other.
The ambassador remarked upon the uneasiness of his masters, that the king might grant the Spanish fleets a place of repair in this kingdom. The king not only declared that he would never agree to this, for reasons backed by the most prudent arguments, but even swore that the Spaniards had never asked for it. As this latter does not seem likely it may weaken the belief in the former assurance. Certainly everything shows that the Spaniards could not, at the present time, receive anything more useful to them than a declaration of this Crown against the Dutch, and they will leave no stone unturned to obtain it. I gather that in general they aim at concluding some effective alliance before completing the marriage, using as an argument the good understanding now existing between France, your Serenity, Savoy and Holland. The decision of the king is doubtful but, in my opinion, he cannot do the harm that he may desire. His powerlessness and fear as well as his prudence will restrain him, so his harmful action will consist in abandoning the good, and in concurring negatively in the evil. I have, however, with the full concurrence of the French ambassador, contrived to let it come to his Majesty's ears that should he turn against the Dutch he will bring upon himself the wrath of all their friends, and, indeed, Holland under the shadow of France alone might trouble this kingdom greatly.
The French ambassador hears from France of some suspicion that this king is stirring the Huguenots to a fresh revolt, it may be that the Spaniards themselves are egging them for their own purposes, but neither he nor I have any confirmation, indeed by the use of reason one may perceive that it is not true because the king lacks the courage for such attempts, and the Huguenots have lost all confidence in the king owing to their past experiences.
I have received your Serenity's letters of the 5th May.
London, the 9th June, 1623.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
June 9.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
52. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Marquis of Inoiosa has arrived here on his way to England as ambassador extraordinary. He will pay his respects to the king at Fontainebleau and then proceed on his journey. They say here that the Prince of Wales did his utmost to prevent this embassy because of the expense and from fear that it will only hinder the speedy conclusion of the marriage. The ostensible reason for the mission is to thank the King of Great Britain for having sent his son at such risk, and to assure him of the honour received and his cordial welcome. But the real one, as I have learned on good authority is that the Spaniards, before concluding the marriage, wish in addition to clinch the alliance by reasons of state, which will strike chiefly either against the States or this kingdom. It is also said that they want a fortress in England and the recall of the English troops serving in the Netherlands.
The Governor of Havre reports that three armed English ships have arrived there and are going to serve the Spaniards in Flanders. There is a rumour that the Admiral of Dunkirk captured a French merchantman, but, falling in with Dutch ships, he set fire to it and withdrew towards England. The merchant has received letters to the Infanta for redress.
Paris, the 9th June, 1623.
[Italian.]
June 10.
Senato.
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Firenze.
Venetian
Archives.
53. VALERIO ANTELMI, Venetian Secretary at Florence, to the DOGE and SENATE.
No courier has come from the Nuncio Massimi from Spain since the letters of the 6th ult., and they are waiting with astonishment and expectation to hear what has happened about the marriage with England, the reply to the papal protests about Chiavenna and the requests upon the payment of the garrisons of the fortressses in the Valtelline.
Florence, the 10th June, 1623.
[Italian.]
June 13.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
54. ALVISE CORNER, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Junta of divines about the king's oath upon enforcing the promises of the King and Prince of England has held very long meetings every day of late. They lay great stress upon the justifications but dispute much over the manner. However, the majority are agreed upon this as the first step of all, before further business they must send a full account to the pope owing to the great changes in what is claimed. The nuncio also urges this strongly, although he has a free hand for treating. Moreover, the Junta considers that as the pope expects to exonerate himself before God and the World for the dispensation by his Catholic Majesty's undertaking, the latter cannot take the oath without endangering his soul unless he perceives beforehand some likelihood of the promises being fulfilled; and leaving on one side countless reasonable doubts why the King of England may fail, the fear alone, shown by the King and the prince about the willingness of Parliament to ratify the articles, asking for three years to induce them, should act as a strong deterrent upon the King of Spain from binding himself in a matter exposed to such evident dangers.
The divines are divided among themselves as to what the king could probably count upon in taking the oath required. Some maintain that the conclusion of the marriage should be deferred for the full three years that the King of England requires to induce parliament to consent to the abrogation of the laws against the Catholics, giving the royal promise to complete it upon this being obtained. Others of more influence, including the king's confessor, Father Pedrosa, Gieronimo and Father Hortensio Triaitario, think that he may interest himself for the promises of England free from all scruple. Since a beginning has been made for the suspension of those laws, which will remain suspended for a year, in which time the other benefits will continue for religion, but in the mean time, to satisfy the prince, after he has left, they should make the marriage after six months by proxy, in order to mollify him at his departure, but keep the bride until the end of a year when they will know of the conditions are being fulfilled, as in this way they will discover various things, and chiefly the strength of the Catholics, who need not longer conceal themselves out of fear, and if they appear as numerous as is reported, parliament will not venture to withdraw the king's suspension, but will respect it from fear of a revolution in the kingdom.
After some discussion all the divines, numbering forty, agreed in this opinion; a paper was accordingly drawn up and presented to the king, affording him the greatest satisfaction, and read to the Council of State, who approved. They decided to inform the prince and Buckingham, as gently and apologetically as possible that his Majesty was compelled to defer to the advice of his confessor and other spiritual fathers in matters of conscience, though for the rest he would do anything to please his Highness; he therefore suggested certain proposals, upon which for his own part he would raise no difficulties.
The Count of Olivares undertook to perform this office and to make matters all right with the English. Accordingly he told them as gently as possible. Nevertheless they flew into a violent rage, and Buckingham in particular blazed forth, without restraining his expressions, declaring that it was all a plot to mock and betray them. He went so far that they exchanged stinging remarks, the Count replying sharply and upbraiding Buckingham, saying it would have been better for carrying the affair to a successful issue if he had never meddled with it, but had allowed Digby to guide the business, as he had done up to that time. The prince subsequently remonstrated so bitterly that he could not restrain his tears, because he professes himself deeply in love with the Infanta (Il Conte d'Olivares si prese assunto di passar l'ufficio et aggiustarsi con gli Inglesi; onde con suavityà glielo expresse; ma però in somma furia si posero, et Buchingam principalmente si sfogò con licentiosa libertà che li haveano ordite burle et tradimenti; essagerando talmente che per le repliche vivaci del Conte si pizzicorono di parole, rinfacciando lui a Buchingam, che meglio sarebbe stato per la ultimatione della prattica che non sene fosse mai ingerito, ma che, come già, il Digbi l'havesse guidata. Il Prencipe poi si dolse tanto amaramente che in palese pianse, perche si professa inamoratissimo della Infanta). He frequently makes attempts to see her, and, in jumping over a garden wall near her apartment, he exposed himself to great danger.
Digby being much grieved at what the Count of Olivares had said, sent some days later by the nuncio, promising that with the completion of the marriage marvellous results would appear, hinting at becoming a Catholic and asserting that if the Infanta went to London it would produce such a good effect that parliament would ratify the treaty much sooner than the three years, and the Catholics would profit in various ways, offering that the bishop selected should be sent immediately, from whom they would hear of the steps taken. In short Digby tried hard to convince the nuncio of the great advantage of the prince taking his bride with him. However the nuncio gave him little encouragement, remarking that his Holiness hoped that his Highness would have been converted and with that idea principally he gave the dispensation. Digby also asked in the prince's name for a place in the meeting of the divines, as his representative. This was granted, but although he made offers to conclude in six months, a year or at most three, they stood by their decision, namely, that the pope should agree to the changes in the four points about the nurses, the oath of vassals, the age of the children and the admittance of Catholics to the church, awaiting what his Holiness says about the king's oath, and apparently they will not change their decision that the Infanta shall remain here at least until the spring, and at most suggest satisfying the prince by a marriage per verba de presbeuti, offering him liberty to stay if he pleases until they grant him his bride.
Cottington is ready to leave for England and the nuncio will send to Rome. They pass the time until the answers come with a multiplicity of festivities, which are troublesome and tedious, but one is obliged to attend them; especially as they are also celebrating the queen's pregnancy.
There are various comments upon the shifting methods of the present negotiations, their artifices appearing clearly. The English are fully aware of them and grow more and more disgusted with the Spaniards, and they say as much publicly. Even when the marriage takes place, as it seems impossible it will not, there will be no love lost between the two nations. Some contend that they are scheming by stratagems to force the King of England to concede immediately anything that may be asked especially about the conversion of the prince, who they hope inclines that way, but does not take this step because he is afraid. Others believe that no irrevocable arrangement of any kind will be concluded, but they will end with some arrangement which will supply the materials for breaking off everything. Not a few state that the only object is to temporise and to fill the prince with hopes, with which he may go back home satisfied, because with the settling down of the present disturbances of Italy, where the Count of Olivares is determined to have peace for the future, he would not need to mind so much the wrath of England, when they discovered they had been laughed at and affronted, as it would not thus be necessary for the crown to divide its forces so much. However, I cannot positively assert the truth of this. There is yet another opinion, that they are treating with the emperor about the Infanta. I certainly notice that the ambassador is quite remarkably happy, and gather from him his hopes are high. I also know that he despatched an extraordinary courier to Germany. This happened the day after the Count of Olivares went to his house. Men of ability say this was merely to create jealousy, thinking it incredible that a matter, which has gone so far, should come to nothing. Nevertheless it has been remarked with astonishment that the Infanta seems much relieved, whereas previously she has betrayed her deep distress. Many declare that the king has reassured her that she shall not become the prince's wife unless he embraces the faith. As this is considered hopeless, the people are now beginning to find fault with the marriage, and some report having got about, I know not from what source, that Prince Vittorio was dead. Prince Filiberto was acclaimed, amid popular applause, as the husband for the Infanta (Diversi discorsi tengono sopra il vario procedere nel negociato presente constando chiaro gli arteficii et molto apertamente avedendosene gli Inglesi, quali restano sempre più disgustati da Spagnoli el pure essi dichiariscono lo stesso palesissimamente, ne (segui anco il casamento, come è quasi impossibile non sia) vi sara acquisto di benevolenza tra queste due nationi; vogliono alcuni che con stratageme si machini di sforzare il Re d'Inghilterra a condescender subito in ogni dimanda, et particolarmente alla conversione del Prencipe, sperandosi vi sia inclinato, ma che per timore non lo effetui: Altri sentono, che a nessuna maniera senza ciò si habbia a concludere irretrattabilmente, ma terminare con conclusione che soministri attaco al discioglimento; non pochi anco parlano, che si miri al solo temporeggiare et imprimere al Prencipi speranze con quali se ne ritorni contento per il che acquetandosi poi li rumori presenti in Italia rissoluto ivi il Conte di Olivares per l'avvenire della pace, ma io questo non affermo per vero, non sia per curarsi del sdegno, che Inghilterra prendesse di trovarsi deriso et affrontato perche la Corona non dividerebbe all'hora tanto le sue forze; vi e opinione di più, che con l'Imperatore pur si tratti con la Infanta, io per certo vego l'Ambasciatore in straordinaria allegrezza, et congeturo da lui, che spera assai, come so che sia dispacciato corriero straordinario in Alemagna, et fu un di doppoche il Conte di Olivares andò in sua casa; per solo ingelosire, si dice da sensati, non potendo presuporsi che suanisca cosi notabil progresso dell'affare, con tutte cio si osserva con admiratione che la Infanta vive consolatissima perche per avanti si confessava afflittissima, attestando molti che il Re l'habbia riasscurata che non sara moglie del Prencipe se non si riduce alla fede, il che ripuntando disperato hormai il popolo ritorna a biasmare il casamento, et essandosi suscitata, non si sa per che via, certa voce, che il prencipe Vittorio fosse morto, si acclama con publico applauso Filiberto per sposo della Infanta).
There is news of the recapture of Ormuz, though it is not fully believed. If it is not confirmed they will feel still more deeply the loss of the three large ships for the East Indies made a target of (bersagliate) by fire ships of the Dutch and English.
Madrid, the 13th June, 1623.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]

Footnotes

1 Lennox's patent was dated the 17th May and Buckingham's the 18th, old style. Nichols: Progresses of James I., iv, page 854.
2 "There is a great faction fallen out in the Virginia Company. The heads of the one side are, the Earl of Southampton, the Lord Cavendish, Sir Edward Sackville, Sir John Ogle, Sir Edwin Sandys and divers others of meaner quality. On the other side are, the Earl of Warwick, Sir Thomas Smith, Sir Nathaniel Rich, Sir Henry Mildmay, Alderman Johnson, and many more." Chamberlain to Carleton, the 19th April. Birch: Court and Times of James I., ii, page 389. The former party brought charges against the latter about the administration of Virginia and the Bermudas connected with the governorship of Sir Thomas Smythe. James appointed a commission to investigate the matter. Cal. S.P. Col., 1613–80, page 44; Acts of the Privy Council (Colonial), 1613–80, pages 64, 65.
3 Daniel, xi. 5.
4 Robert, Baron Carey of Leppington. With him came most of the prince's household.