Venice
March 1624, 22-31

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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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248-260

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'Venice: March 1624, 22-31', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 18: 1623-1625 (1912), pp. 248-260. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=88905 Date accessed: 21 April 2014. Add to my bookshelf


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March 1624

March 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
308. ALVISE VALARESSO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The parliamentry deputies went to the king as I reported. The Archbishop of Canterbury spoke in the name of the rest (fn. 1) He said he thanked God for having dissipated the clouds from the eyes of princes and his Majesty and that he was graciously pleased to receive their humble advice, upon which they had unanimously agreed after mature deliberation and after finding such frauds in the course of the negotiations that his Majesty ought on no account to continue them out of consideration for his own honour, for the safety of his realm, for the needs of his children and the interests of his allies. Canterbury himself communicated these particulars to me.
I enclose the king's reply, and therefore need not describe it. I considered the delay of the king in hearing this deputation on the plea of bad health, augured badly, and am very sorry to find that the event has justified me, as has happened only too often, the king's sinister desires always acting as an impediment to anything good unless he is driven by insuperable necessity. He spoke with various confused sentiments and almost like an oracle. The reasons given for suspending the confirmation of the advice given to him are more in accordance with the king's character than adapted to the exigencies of the situation, but even if they were good in themselves the circumstances of the time and persons render them suspect if not actually bad, and indeed one is only too justified in suspecting the king's intentions after such a long experience of bad. The better hopes which he alludes to in the negotiations can mean nothing except the proposals of the Capuchin, and I do not think the assurance he can give about the money to be obtained from the parliament before declaring that the negotiations are broken off will overcome the doubts of his subjects. The exaggeration of his need for money was untimely and possibly intended to cause alarm. His professions about peace are an old tune and strike a discordant note in the present concert. In short the whole reply is like a cloud crossing the light of good hopes. At all events these hopes still shine brightly and many gentlemen assure me that all obstacles whatsoever will be overcome by the prudence and influence of the prince and Buckingham in particular in such sort that they will either proceed to the king's declaration and the help of parliament at one step or they will make an assignment and not the exaction or will adjust the satisfaction of the one and the caution of the other in some other way.
The treasurer has shown the king's debts by a clear account, and all told they amount to rather less than 60,000l. sterling, a smaller sum than expected. For the rest the conciliation and assuring of these two points afford the chief materials for parliamentary discussion at the moment; God grant that the general desires may prevail. Although many reasons make this practically certain, yet I shall always be fearful of the depraved will, the inveterate trickiness and the absolute, almost despotic, authority of the king here, especially as one man can do more to retard any machine than ten can to move it. Certainly the parliament is one of the choicest and best intentioned ever assembled, the kingdom is prepared to support any burden in the common service, Buckingham is both steadfast and interested in the continuation of the work, and the prince is irreconcileably disgusted with the Spaniards. He spoke recently in parliament amid universal applause and with such prudence as to heal in great measure the harm done by his father, he being no better satisfied with the king's last reply than the king may be, perchance, with the prince's action. The latter emancipates himself more and more every day from his father's authority, although both are at one in the very wise determination to renew nothing against the Catholics (certo il parlamento è de più scielti et de meglio intentionati che mai si convocasse, il regno tutto disposto a soccomber ad ogni peso per servitio comune, il Bochingen tanto constante tanto interessato alla continuatione dell'opera, et il Prencipe irreconciliabilmente disgustato de' Spagnoli. Ragionò egli ultimamente in parlamento con aplauso universale et con una tule prudenza che medicò in gran parte il male fatto dal Padre non essendosi egli meno sodisfatto dell'ultima risposta del Re, come questo forse non si sodisfa delle attioni del principe, il quale pare ogni giorno si vadi in certo modo emancipando dell'auttorità di quello: si uniscono tuttavia le voluntà delli uni et degli altri nella ben utile rissolutione di non rinovar alcuna cosa contra Cattolici).
The king removed from the arguments for the rupture of the marriage one that too deeply wounded the Catholic religion, while the prince deals very tactfully with the Catholic lords, and both (fn. 2) put a bridle on the zeal of the Puritans. In parliament, however, they make many serious complaints against the Catholics and in particular against the titular Bishop of Calcidonia, of whom I wrote before, who has passed all bounds and perhaps exceeded his commissions in consecrating priests, dispensing titles, dressing in the episcopal vestments and finally erecting a public tribunal. He has now retreated to the Spanish embassy. (fn. 3) I do not think they will go further with the Catholics than to take away their arms, and certainly, as I insist when I have an opportunity, moderation towards them will deprive the Spaniards of a notable advantage and a pretext whereby they could convert into a war of religion for their own benefit every movement made from this quarter either to recover the Palatinate or to avenge the injuries received.
I took advantage of the leave taking of the Marquis Martinengo to return to France, to see the Duke of Buckingham. I congratulated him that God was prospering his just purposes and not only favoured the success of his enterprises but turned the efforts of his enemies to his advantage, an allusion to the recent office of the Spanish ambassadors which greatly pleased Buckingham. From the ensuing conversation I can report that so far no formal negotiations for a marriage with France have been opened, although there is mutual good-will; he was not satisfied with the king's reply to the deputation, although he thought it necessary for the king to know what help his people would give before taking up an enterprise of such importance. I retorted that it was more necessary for the king to let his people know his intentions than for the people to assure the king of their own disposition, for past events showed that there could not fail to be doubts about his disposition while theirs clearly could not be better. He admitted as much himself and assured me that all would turn out well. He added perhaps the most remarkable thing of all, telling me that the king certainly was master but the prince also had his share, as if they would carry through to completion the work begun, whether the father desired it or no; this point requires consideration as well as secrecy.
They have not yet begun negotiations with the Dutch ambassadors, the true reason being that the necessary basis must first be settled by parliament. They are sorry for the delay both because they are not without fears about the issue and because they might still have time, by deciding soon, to attack or stay the treasure fleet this year, now at Havana. They have heard of the loss of some iron ordnance taken by the Spaniards from an English ship going from here to Flushing. (fn. 4)
I am anxiously awaiting this week's packet which may throw some light on the preceding one which is lost, and possibly I may tell the Secretary Conovel about it, to account for my silence and keep him from taking offence, especially at a moment when these budding resolutions require encouragement to serve your Serenity's interests while the common enemy oppose them strongly. I keep the public welfare steadily in view, though I act cautiously as regards the Spaniards, so as not to commit your Excellencies or exceed my commissions.
London, the 22nd March, 1624.
Postscript.—This week's packet arrived as I was closing the above, and I reply below.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Enclosed in
the preceding
despatch.
309. Speech of his Majesty of the 8th March, 1624.
Thanks God his speech in parliament produced good results, and that they have given him their advice, for which he thanks them cordially. Thanks the lower house for putting a stop to attempts to create ill feeling between him and his people. They advise him to a breach both about the marriage and the Palatinate. Will not make war unless obliged. He received hopes of better terms about the Palatinate, but is not the king to ask advice and then spurn it. He must consider ways and means; would like to see his children reinstated before saying his Nunc dimittis. Will not speak of his own needs, though he has received less help from Parliament than any other king for long years. His powerlessness increased by the expenses of the prince's journey to Spain, by embassies, by helping his children and by the defence of the Palatinate, for which he incurred a heavy debt with the King of Denmark, which he is unable to pay. The Netherlands are so reduced that they can scarcely hold out unless he helps them; the princes of Germany are poor and expect help from hence. Ireland is a back door which needs guarding. The navy is in a better state than it has ever been, but more ships are required. He must maintain his children until they are reinstated. The customs, the chief source of his revenue, would be destroyed by war. Subsidies require a long time for collection. If they help him that way he will be forced to raise a loan, the interest of which would swallow up a large proportion of the money. Will ponder their advice and begs them to consider his objections. Their hearts will open their purses. If he engages in war by their advice they shall control the expenditure of the money. Let them give him what they please, but the money voted for the war shall be spent on nothing else. Although peace and war are the prerogatives of the king, he promises not to make peace without consulting them. Their friendly behaviour causes him the greatest satisfaction. Wishes to forget all the faults of former parliaments and it will not be his fault if he does not become enamoured of parliaments, calling them frequently. Desires to end his days in accord with his people through parliament. Let them discuss these points, when his resolution will be made manifest. (fn. 5)
[Italian; 5 pages.]
March 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
310. ALVISE VALARESSO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Capuchin has left for the Hague; the king gave him his portrait, worth about 100l. sterling. He will speak to the Palatine to whom they may have referred the negotiations from here. An informant tells me that the Capuchin has complained somewhat of my not assisting his offices, following the example of the French ambassador, who, to tell the truth has done all in his power; but in a doubtful matter I could not move without instructions. I am told that he offered to agree to the Palatine's son being placed in Saxony's hands, but he did not tell me this; he told me with some vehemence that they could not make a war for the Palatinate which would not be a war of religion. I made a suitable reply and thought fit to remark that the pope and those who care about his greatness should look to it that while they were trying to advance his power they did not inadvertently aggrandise the Spanish monarchy, and if that realised its ambitions it would inevitably end by devouring and destroying the other.
London, the 22nd March, 1624.
[Italian; deciphered.]
March 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
311. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The Marquis of Vievile told us ambassadors that the Duke of Bavaria still seemed anxious for an alliance with France, and in the present state of affairs it was necessary for him to secure himself or throw in his lot with the house of Austria. He pointed out the importance of this. We thanked him and said it would be most desirable to have the duke on our side. We should like to see his proposals to weigh them. He can only have taken this step in order to obtain support, or to make a settlement with the Palatine, to make a universal party against the house of Austria for the liberties of Germany. It was a great matter to grant him support, and an accommodation could only be effected with the participation of England, which we ought to aim at to bring him to a proper frame of mind, to break with Spain and join with France. The ambassador of Savoy said it would be necessary to watch Bavaria closely because he had deceived last year. He only tried to maintain his position and it was hard to believe that he would oppose the Spaniards.
From something the Garde des Sceaux said I think the ministers have taken our remarks to heart and have decided to do nothing that will not please England. I cannot yet feel sure whether the King of Great Britain will agree, with the same object of preventing Bavaria from joining the Spaniards. The French moved owing to the strong representations of the nuncio.
Sensible men think the whole business insincere.
Paris, the 22nd March, 1624.
[Italian; deciphered.]
March 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
312. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The news from England grows better and better, and upon this they build strongly, hoping that the rupture of the Spanish match will lead England to seek a French one. The negotiations proceed secretly, but they hope to arrange Madame's marriage. Both the English and the French ministers have assured me of their friendly understanding and mutual satisfaction. Expresses are frequent. Lord Rich frequents the cabinets of the king and queen, and this privacy pleases honest men.
The Ambassador Farges writes from Spain advocating a good understanding between the two crowns and touches on the marriage of Madame to the Infant. They secretly propose to recall him.
Bethune tries to fortify himself with all the credit and authority he can muster. Puysieulx, through his Majesty's ambassadors, had assured the Spaniards that the king would not think of a marriage with England, and they would never disturb but rather assist the one with Spain. The Spanish ambassadors in England have asked the French ambassador for the observance of this promise. He wrote to ask for instructions. They sent word that everything done in Puysieulx's time was disapproved; the ambassador might have represented the king's opinions at that time. He was to amuse the Spaniards with meaningless compliments.
Paris, the 22nd March, 1624.
[Italian; deciphered.]
March 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
313. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The nuncio has called upon me telling me he knew what had been arranged about the Count of Mansfeld. He let me see that he would not oppose the marriage of Madame to the Prince of Wales, but he must maintain the advantage of the faith. I have discovered that the French have approached the King of Great Britain to prevent the parliament from moving against the Catholics, and thereby earn the title which the Spaniards desire, of protectors of the faith, to make it appear that they want to break with Spain but not to harm the faith; they want credit with Rome and to keep in with the English Catholics.
Paris, the 22nd March, 1624.
[Italian.]
March 25.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Signori
Stati.
Venetian
Archives.
314. MARC' ANTONIO MORESINI, Venetian Ambassador in the Netherlands, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The news from England fills every one here with content, and the queen in particular. She gave me a paper containing the doings of parliament up to the present.
Near Calais a Zeeland ship captured a vessel containing several Spaniards of the household of the ambassador in England. (fn. 6) At first it was reported that the Spanish ambassador himself had been made prisoner, and there were great rejoicings here.
The Hague, the 25th March, 1624.
[Italian.]
March 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Spagna.
Venetian
Archives.
315. ALVISE CORNER, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The friar has gone, whom I reported they were sending to Flanders. The principal object of his mission is to prevent a breach at all costs, while giving assurances that they mean sincerely to keep their promises and at the same time defending the action of the ambassador extraordinary. The friar as a creature of the Count of Olivares and Gondomar will try to direct the negotiations into channels where his principals will secretly follow him.
Madrid, the 27th March, 1624.
[Italian.]
March 27.
Cinque
Savii alla
Mercanzia,
Lettere.
Venetian
Archives.
316. The FIVE SAGES of the MERCANZIA to the PODESTA of CHIOGGIA.
Order to hand over the ship Fenice and its tackle, as Rudolph Simes has given sureties, notwithstanding any claims made by Jews or Christians who may be interested.
Marco Zustignan.
Paul Antonio Valaresso.
[Italian.]
March 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
317. ALVISE VALARESSO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Matters are in a state of fluctuation, not to say decadence; every day brings its novelty, and the novelties are all but detestable. Nothing is more stable than instability, nothing more certain than the king's disinclination for a rupture, in fine the king is the same as ever, variable, tricky, inscrutable, determined upon peace, dominated by fear only and the forger of every mischief.
Parliament worked until last Sunday, debating the reply to be given to his Majesty's answer, which I forwarded. There was no lack of divers opinions as well probably as of divers passions. The prince works wonders, he also went to the lower house, which he had never visited before. He spoke in a prudent, friendly and most praiseworthy manner, promising that he would remain eternally indebted for what they did for him at this juncture. Accordingly, as they did not think it opportune to descend to particular offers, they decided by common consent to place the life and goods of all at his Majesty's disposition if he will consent to a rupture, which in parliamentary language means contributions under the supervision of the parliament. With this offer the deputation went to the king last Sunday.
The king, according to his usual practice, reaches the city on Saturday and always goes off on Monday to some country place in the environs. As before, the Archbishop of Canterbury spoke in the name of all, making the offer aforesaid. I enclose a copy of the king's reply. There are three leading points: a very high demand for money, although it is not impossible for the kingdom to supply it, each subsidy amounting to 100,000l. and the fifteenth to about 30,000l. He said nothing certain about the declaration, and in some sense he gives the lie to the prince and Buckingham in what they reported about the negotiations with Spain and practically to himself also, as at the opening of parliament he admitted the fraud, while he now denies the knowledge of any injury. Some have blamed Canterbury because in his short introduction he let slip something distasteful to the king which parliament had not commanded; others reprove parliament itself, because they did not go into particulars without wasting time over generalities. But all or almost all are highly discontented with the king's reply, considering it a confirmation of the preceding one, a declaration and a fresh expression of his ancient ideas.
Some attribute his method of procedure to very subtle art, either to exonerate himself in the eyes of the Spaniards from all blame, or to lull them with hopes of peace, all credible in any one but the king; they also argue that he never would have consented to summon parliament if he had not decided to go on, as if it would have been easier for him and less dangerous to prevent its meeting than to dissolve it. But he either had some other secret object in his first consent, or, as he is very variable, he may have changed his mind afterwards with fears arising, instilled possibly by the Spaniards themselves, of the excessive influence of the prince and of dangers to himself which he had not remarked so much at first when they were further off. But the truth is that the king fears the Spaniards as enemies no less than his own subjects armed, who would then be more difficult to control, and all their leaders would be under suspicion. Some of the wisest think that in asking for money before he declares himself he intends to satisfy his own necessities if he gets it, and if he does not he will seize upon that as a pretext for dissolving the parliament.
The reply given by the king displeases the prince and Buckingham extremely; when they heard it they turned pale and the prince never uttered a word the whole day. The Spaniards seem to have taken fresh life. The ambassadors have issued from the embassy and they all speak with assurance and applause of the king's good intentions. So in a moment we see everything changed. However, on Sunday night at the prince's instigation Buckingham entered the king's chamber, and shut in there by the prince he kneeled before the king, asking for some milder explanation of the reply given to Canterbury, and finally he obtained a favourable statement which he took to the parliament on Monday, promising in the king's name to lighten the burden of so many subsidies and that he would declare for a rupture and for a marriage with a Catholic princess, suggesting France as in any case less serious for religion than Spain, especially as in the latter case they had to concede much to the Catholics in exchange for the great dowry and the Palatinate, considerations which do not apply to France. But as this did not suffice to satisfy the parliament, since no one but the king could correct and declare things said by himself, Buckingham went to the king on Tuesday and in the presence of a knight named Gorim obtained a promise that he would declare himself when parliament made the necessary offers; but though something in appearance this is really nothing.
They are now busy with their deliberations in parliament and have nearly decided to offer the king thirty armed ships to guard the coasts of the realm, ten royal, ten merchantmen and ten of the Scotch colliers, all excellent ships; to issue letters of marque permitting men to make reprisals in the seas of India; to secure the ports of England; to send 4,000 soldiers to Ireland, and to succour the Dutch with 16,000 men, all easy things to do and which would give a certain appearance of defensive war, to sweeten the dose for the king's taste in short they neglect no means of pleasing him. But the good resolutions of all the rest count for so many ciphers without the king's positive figure. They will suspend the sittings of the parliament for some five or six days for the Easter vacation. This suspension comes at an unfortunate time, as it will afford an opportunity for a dissolution, which is greatly feared. Among such a variety of opinions and events one cannot form a definite opinion; God grant that the worst view may not be the soundest, but certainly the prince and Buckingham have reached such a pass that they must either conquer or die, while the king can only be overcome by force, which in the present state of affairs is far off indeed.
In the upper house suspicion has constantly increased against some noblemen, already opposed to the general welfare, who have taken courage from the king's resolutions, while he has perhaps received some from them. The lord treasurer is considered the worst of these, and after him the Lord Keeper, both creatures of Buckingham, but now estranged if not his enemies.
To ensure the passage of Father Maestro the king at the instance of the ambassadors has sent him a most ample passport, declaring anyone who harms him an enemy. Thus inconsistently, while they are talking of breaking off all negotiations, they open the door to a negotiator, who was the first instrument of all the mischief, although he may never come, as I believe. This also is a trick of the Spaniards to keep things in suspense or for other purposes.
The guns taken by the Spaniards although put on board at the instance of the States, were in the name of the Burlamacchi, merchants of this city, and this constitutes an affront to the king, but he does not seem any more sensible of this than of the others, having even refused the sequestration of some Spanish goods which the Burlamacchi claimed as compensation for their losses. They made the capture without any resistance and some say it happened with the king's good will. These suspicions of him go so far that men even believe that he has assured the Spaniards no move shall be made against them. With the Dutch ambassadors, however, they keep silence. Anstruther does not start, and this is because both affairs depend upon the resolutions of parliament; however, as the favourable disposition of that body is well known, the fault clearly lies with the king, who when he could begun negotiations with the Dutch or send his envoy to Denmark, Saxony and Brandenburg, when the papers have been signed and all but sealed, changes their form and greatly modifies the vigour of the original expressions.
Lord Chinsinton in his last despatch reports a favourable disposition in France towards the marriage, though he only deals in generalities; however, the prince has recently sent to him and I hear that he would like serious negotiations to be opened as soon as possible, although naturally the French will never treat until the negotiations with Spain are completely broken off. The five merchantmen are leaving for the East Indies, and so well supplied that they will not fear any eventuality.
Some native merchants have gone to lay before the king their complaints about the arrest of their ships and men in Spain to serve the king there, to their great loss. So this stone is struck from every direction, but not a spark of generosity appears.
The Count or Countess of Olivares have made the prince a present of hams, raisins, figs, capers and similar fruit. They are sent by the ambassadors upon two carts and did not reach the palace till night. The prince refused to have them unloaded then, but when day came he gave away everything without keeping the smallest thing for himself; the slight conveyed by this is unmistakeable, while the impertinence of the gift is manifest, the whole city is gossiping on the subject. (fn. 7)
The captain sent by Mansfelt has not yet seen the king and he lingers on awaiting fresh instructions from his chief. I have received the ducal missives of the 1st March. I did not go to the king for various reasons, but saw the Secretary Conovel and passed with him the office enjoined upon me. He informed the king. I also executed your commands with Sir [Isaac] Wake, who seemed greatly obliged, and I feel sure your Serenity will find him an excellent minister.
London, the 29th March, 1624.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Enclosed
in the
preceding
despatch.
318. REPLY of the King to Canterbury, made last Sunday, the 24th March.
Subjects have never made the king such ample offers, for which he thanked them. As parliament raised difficulties as to declaring what they would contribute in case of war, he would raise certain points: (1) He asks for five subsidies and ten fifteenths yearly, with the immediate erection of a bank to have the money ready. If he declares war parliament shall have complete control of the money, and he will not make peace without asking their advice and consent, thus waiving a royal prerogative. (2) He wishes to pay his debts before he dies, and therefore asks parliament for a subsidy besides those mentioned above, and two fifteenths yearly until the debts are paid.
He also said that the archbishop in his introduction made two remarks from which his Majesty strongly dissented; one that he had never declared whether he had been offended and had received any injury or no, the other that if his son and the Duke of Buckingham had lamented to parliament, they had done so of their own accord, as he had merely told them to give a simple statement and narration of the facts; if he had wished to make lamentation he could have done so with truth and vigour.
[Italian.]
March 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci.
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
319. ALVISE VALARESSO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
It is a good while ago since I received hints more than once of the taste which the Duke of Buckingham had for certain pictures of Venice, but I turned a deaf ear for many reasons. But this week the Earl of Desmont, formerly Lord Dingwall and now a near relation of the duke, came to offer you his services and after some preliminary remarks stated clearly that Buckingham desired above all things some pictures in accordance with the enclosed memorial and he would not stint money to buy them, but as they were in the hands of your Serenity, he would value them as a treasure however he obtained them. I told the earl he might rest assured that your Serenity was anxious above all things to please the duke, whom you esteemed very highly, although with regard to these pictures which he desired, your Serenity was accustomed to guard such things jealously, and rarely if ever to part with them, as is the manner of republics. I said nothing further, recognising that any concession would open the way to similar demands; on the other hand it is no small matter to win by a thing of no great consideration an influential person, old in the king's favour and new in the prince's and quite recently considered by the people as the guiding star of their hopes.
London, the 29th March, 1624.
[Italian.]
Enclosed
in the
preceding
despatch.
320. MEMORIAL of pictures desired by the Duke of Buckingham.
The Duke of Buckingham desireth by any means possible to have certain pictures, made by Paul Veronese, that are in a certain room or passage towards the great library in the palace of St. Mark at Venice.
[English.]
March 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
321. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
They continue well inclined to England here, but I observe that the king there has not fully disclosed his purposes. They rely upon the parliament, but fear his Majesty's nature, and that once the estates have dissolved and he has obtained what he wants, he will return to the vomit of his feeble negotiations. He seems, however, to have gone so far that he will find it hard to draw back, and the rupture of the Spanish match is considered certain, to be followed by a quickening of the negotiations for Madame.
Paris, the 29th March, 1624.
[Italian.]
March 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
322. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The nuncio here goes about impressing the idea that they must not offend his Holiness. They must take care not to harm the faith; if they help the States they must see that the Spaniards do not feel the effects in Germany; if they marry Madame to the Prince of Wales they must support the Catholics. He shows what they ought to do, but skilfully deprives it of all its advantages. Exp. pap.
Paris, the 29th March, 1624.
[Italian.]
March 30.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Roma.
Venetian
Archives.
323. PIERO CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador at Rome, to the DOGE and SENATE.
When I sent to the Cardinal of Trent to negotiate about the prisons of Brentonico, he sent to tell me that they heard in a congregation as certain news that the match between England and Spain was absolutely broken off. Although a Cardinal he rejoiced because he thought that the Spaniards wanted to grasp too much.
Rome, the 30th March, 1624.
[Italian.]
March 30.
Misc.
Cod. No. 63.
Venetian
Archives.
324. MARC' ANTONIO PADAVIN, Venetian Secretary in Germany, to the DOGE and SENATE.
They have become very suspicious of the Most Christian because they hear that he is reconciled with England and has ordered a levy of seven regiments of Germans, whom Mansfeld will command, and that the Count della Torre has arrived in Holland. These two kings with their allies, other Protestant princes and especially Denmark will unite for the reinstatement of the Palatine. The Most Christian proposes to send Mansfeld into Alsace, to which the French have ancient pretensions. They want the Duke of Bavaria to join them, promising him still further greatness, even suggesting the kingdom of Bohemia, if he will join them against the house of Austria, and the most serene republic is at the bottom of all these machinations, so that the feeling against her grows ever stronger here.
They are convinced of the truth of this news and yesterday they held a secret council about it and decided to send for the Archduke Leopold immediately. Two reasons convince them that the news is true, firstly, the change of ministers in France and, secondly, the energy with which the king there is collecting money, while in addition there is the rupture of the English match with Spain and the prospect of one with the Most Christian's sister.
For these reasons the Spanish ambassador protests that they must make peace with Gabor, and in order to leave no way untried of keeping the King of Great Britain in the lethargy in which he has been sunk hitherto, this ambassador has informed his Majesty of what the King of England had said to the Catholic, namely, if they reinstated the Palatine as they had promised, the marriage should certainly take place. To this they replied that if by this they meant what the prince told the Spanish ambassador in London, that this restitution must come first, that was not possible, because restitution rested with Cæsar, not with the Spaniards, but they would undertake to induce the emperor to consent; and here the ambassador begged the emperor to induce Bavaria to consent to all the negotiations being carried on at Madrid, with the sole object of making the King of England believe that the Spaniards were doing all in their power to procure him satisfaction.
The emperor promised to approach Bavaria, but no one believes that he will consent either to surrender the fortresses of the Lower Palatinate or the transfer of the negotiations to Spain. The ambassador brings pressure to bear on the ministers and he can easily get what he wants here, since the Court turns at his will, but everything depends upon Bavaria's decision.
Vienna, the 30th March, 1624.
[Italian; copy.]

Footnotes

1 For the archbishop's speech see S.P. Dom., vol. clx, no. 29.
2 The decipher reads Agbiraf, the cipher gives 156–358–117–151 a-m-bi-due.
3 William Bishop, Bishop of Calcedon. Salvietti, in his newsletter of the 15th March, says that the houses of the Catholics were searched to find him. Brit. Mus. Add. MSS. 27962c.
4 "This week we hear that 50 pieces of ordnance which were shipped from here to be sold in Holland were by the way met withal and taken by the Dunkirkers." State Papers, Dom., vol. clx, no. 70.
5 See Cal. S.P. Dom., 1623–5, page 178, where the reply is dated the 5th March.
6 "Here are come certain deputies of the Admiralty of Zeeland ... who bring news of two Spanish gentlemen taken betwixt Dover and Calais, belonging to the Spanish Ambassador Colonna, as they were going into Spain, and setting on land in a shalop, after they were parted from their ship. They were brought prisoners to Flushing, where they remain, and their letters being visited nothing is found in them of consideration."—Carleton to Calvert from the Hague, the 15th March, 1624, old style. State Papers, Foreign, Holland.
7 See Birch: Court and Times of James I, vol. ii, page 453.