Venice
February 1626,17-27

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

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1913

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322-336

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'Venice: February 1626,17-27', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 19: 1625-1626 (1913), pp. 322-336. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=89056 Date accessed: 28 August 2014.


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February 1626

Feb. 17.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni.
Venetian
Archives.
470. That the ambassador of his Catholic Majesty be summoned to the Collegio and the following be read to him:
Thanks for the friendly office of communicating the attack of the English fleet and the reasons for the same, which the republic heard with regret, being always desirous of peace and anxious for the removal of all differences between princes.
Ayes, 119.Noes, 1.Neutral, 7.
[Italian.]
Feb. 17.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
471. To the Ambassador in Spain.
Enclose copy of reply to the office of the Ambassador Benavides about the English fleet. If the king has not departed, to go to him and express the same ideas as those contained in the reply and to do the same with Olivares, which will all serve to show the goodwill and friendly feeling of the republic. If the king has left, to perform the same office with the ministers.
Ayes, 119.Noes, 1.Neutral, 7.
[Italian.]
Feb. 20.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
472. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
The constant preoccupation of the ministers here with internal affairs does not allow them to give a thought even to the most important foreigns affairs. However, I have tried to obtain a decision about the ship and Aleppo. Secretary Conway meeting me hurriedly in a gallery excused his neglect owing to his being so busy and assured me that his Majesty means to give the republic satisfaction. In reply to some questions, he admitted the matter was not finished, but they would send proper orders to the Porte and Aleppo. He told me there had been a great discussion in the Council; they could not condemn the absent without hearing them; they did not approve of the consul's behaviour, but if the king's subjects were guilty of rebellion he had to look after the interests of the nation.
I urged the danger of appealing to the Turks and said I hoped from the promises made to me that they would have ordered him to keep away from those courts. The secretary said: That is understood; I will show you what they will write. We must regulate this for the future. He then broke off, being distracted by many affairs and summoned by the king. I think the matter arranged by the Council and not carried out by the secretary.
The merchants, with their power and interest, have greatly modified the first disposition, and have apparently secured that information must come before they finally decide; they maintain that the consul could not delay to refer the matter to his Majesty, which is their excuse for going to the Turk; indeed, I hear they state falsely that our consul was the first to appeal to the Turkish Courts. Meanwhile they intend the ambassador at the Porte to advance their cause, or they may try to have an end made to the dispute, as the Secretary Conway always mutilates to me the words and the sense of the orders sent to Constantinople.
About the ship, although the trouble will probably not be greater, yet to avoid further inconvenience, we should come to some understanding with the king and employ English ships with due regard to our interests. I have importuned the Secretary Cuch about the ship Faith. After he had offered excuses for giving the book of lading to the purser of the ship and I had remonstrated at their not keeping their promises, I got him to promise three things, to show me the book and let me know the entire cargo; to cause the release of various goods to many parties who have sent proxies to their agents, and not to unlade the rest of the cargo before I have received your Serenity's commands. I hope the parties interested will profit by the respite. So far, however, he has done nothing to keep their promises. The interest of the duke remains unaltered and the commissions of the parties concerned are for the most part in the hands of Peter Ricault, a Flemish merchant, suspected of intrigues with the Spaniards, who recently brought a strong ship under the pretence of trade, but really for the Viceroy of Naples, whither it was sent for use in war. The name of Spaniard is hateful in everything and any pretext is good enough for the sake of an advantage.
London, the 20th February, 1625 [M.V.].
[Italian.]
Feb. 20.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
473. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Parliament was opened on the 6/16 inst., the king having the usual state cavalcade, wearing the royal habit and followed by the titled nobility, though many less than usual. The Earl of Pembroke, his Majesty's Lord Chamberlain, acted as High Steward, and the Earl of Worcester (Uster) Keeper of the Privy Seal, as Lord High Chamberlain of the realm. The king entered the upper house and spoke briefly about the meeting of parliament, leaving the rest, owing to the impediment of his tongue, to the Lord Keeper.
He spoke in general terms of the constitution of parliament and his Majesty's powers; the difference between the king's greatness and the lowliness of the people; the graciousness of his Majesty in consulting the people, exhorting them to act for the king's honour, to show the wisdom of the nation and their indebtedness to his Majesty for the help he gave parliament in the time of the late king in obtaining laws which will be a perpetual benefit and consolation to the people of this realm. In his grief at his father's death, his first thought was to summon parliament, although it was unfortunately interrupted by sickness and other causes. His first thought again on returning to this city was to summon parliament and he hoped to find them ready to co-operate in what is right. He said nothing about shortening or prolonging the session, only that it would last for such time as his Majesty thinks fit for the introduction of such laws as may relieve his subjects, promising religion and justice, the pillars of every strong state. He urged the dishonour of the nation if they were not sensible of what concerns his Majesty and their own welfare, touching upon the bond between the king and his people. He hoped for a good accord in parliament, disclosing his Majesty's intention and desire that matters shall be speedily despatched, referring details to another day.
Meanwhile they are arranging the Lower House and the offices, and have chosen their Speaker, (fn. 1) whom his Majesty has confirmed. There will be much talk in this assembly if not much work. The duke seems quite secure, and with reason, as the king becomes more and more steadfast in supporting him. In order to intimidate the parliament men it is rumoured that he will give the post of Constable of the Realm to the duke, but the artifice is recognised, because with all the duke's power over subjects he also prevails over the king himself in person, who may with reason fear him and be jealous (ma è conosciuto l' arteficio, perche come è potente sopra i sudditi, cosi vale sopra la persona medesima del Re, il quale con ragione ha da temere et d' haverne gelosia).
However, his Majesty has declared that he desires the prompt satisfaction of his requirements or he will at once dissolve parliament. The result depends upon the way the proposals are introduced, and the obstinacy of the people, who show themselves very dissatisfied with the duke and with the conduct of public affairs.
In this state of things the Catholics expect to profit, if parliament is dissolved with strained relations between the king and the people, partly by things being thrown into confusion to the advantage of the Spaniards, their idols, and partly by hopes of improved conditions when it is no longer necessary to satisfy parliament, if the king is displeased with them.
As everything is ruled with a view to this parliament, so the affairs of France correspond with the duke's interests. It is thought from numerous indications that as he expects to win great merit by a peace for the Huguenots he has urged the king's ambassadors to arrange a peace upon any conditions, in the hope that this return of the ships and the king's interposition will prove sufficient to win him praise and safety in the present circumstances.
They believe that the Bishop of Mandem knew of that and that the French, for their own ends, agreed to this interposition of the English, which they had always rejected before, and that Botrù had won over the duke by persuading him they were anxious for his safety and desired peace in his interests, at which they would give back the ships and co-operate for German affairs.
The duke also assured the French ambassador that he would be satisfied with the peace and if the Rochellese did not accept it they would be abandoned. But his Majesty is wroth at these negotiations to such an extext that I am assured he threw the letters of his ambassadors into the fire at the Council. He utterly disapproves of what has been done because it means the certain fall of la Rochelle and injury to them here; most people have expressed intense dissatisfaction, saying they would rather have war than such a peace. Accordingly the duke, finding that he gained nothing, has changed his mind, blamed the ambassadors, encouraged the deputies of la Rochelle to hold out and has sent to France, it is thought in order to tell the ambassadors how they must offer excuses to the king and that his Majesty and the States may give their word for the maintenance of peace for those of the religion. If the Most Christian agrees to this all will be well, as the king's promise and protection would make up for unfavourable terms, as he would keep good his word by arms, and the fear of this would induce the Most Christian to keep the peace.
In this connection the duke told me that peace in France is made and is not made, as the terms are established but it is not certain whether the Rochellese will ratify them, but in their present condition they may consider themselves fortunate in the protection of his Majesty. I do my best, but in such complicated intrigues one can do no good. The ambassador confirmed that the things are not established, not even on the king's side, but they will drag out the negotiations. He said that in France they had taken up the question of the differences of the queen's household, and had received a promise that after the parliament they will try and arrange a compromise for the queen's coronation. This matter touches the French, as her Majesty loses many prerogatives and the affection and respect of the people, though with their hatred of the Catholic religion and of France they rejoice that she is not crowned, and the duke has caused more satisfaction over this than by all his other devices to save himself.
For the rest, matters are quiet, except those which concern the parliament.
The duke has taken the oath as Master of the Horse (Cavallarezzo maggiore); he already combines in himself all the leading offices of the realm. The king has created eight earls in a public ceremony, (fn. 2) from which they say the duke obtained a considerable sum of money.
The gentleman of the ambassador of Savoy has been despatched; they gave him a gold chain, answering the duke's letter and requests by expressing their good will, but doing nothing.
I have your Serenity's commands with information of the negotiations of Gabor's ambassador at the Porte. The agent of the Palatine has received many instructions in conformity to persuade the duke that they will decide something in the end and prevent him from taking offence, and not to render his advances useless or dangerous. He adds that they must keep their promises to pay the King of Denmark, as they undertook to satisfy him by the 20th March, pointing out the dangers which may arise, and how that king has shown great caution, as although he approved the league made at the Hague, yet he announced he would not ratify it unless he had security for receiving the money first.
I will try and obtain the powder for your Serenity, although I think it will be very difficult owing to their requirements here, the prohibitions issued and the dangers to shipping.
London, the 20th February, 1625 [M.V.].
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 20.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
474. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
On the day the king entered parliament a serious incident occurred between their Majesties and between the king and the French ambassador. Preparations were made in the apartments of the Countess of Buckingham, the duke's mother, to allow the queen to see the king and the procession go by. In order to pass to those rooms her Majesty would be obliged for a short distance to cross the garden, at a time when the ground was wet and muddy with the rain. The queen therefore told the king she would not go to the appointed place, and after repeated pressure he seemed much irritated; the ambassador then arrived and succeeded in inducing her to go. But it did not please the king that this should occur through the ambassador's offices, and he directed that the queen should not go to those apartments again. However, she went there expecting to mollify his irritation, but with the opposite effect. The Duke of Buckingham brought the king's order commanding the queen to withdraw, showing that his Majesty was offended at not being obeyed at first, and still more so by her being in those apartments. The queen and ambassador sent to beg the king that she might stay in the midst of many ladies, but he, determined to be obeyed, insisted that the queen should leave, otherwise he would never pass before her; so her Majesty had to withdraw to her apartments and the king went to parliament.
The queen has complained bitterly about this affront, and at the duke acting as messenger on this occasion. She spoke sharply, while the ambassador also complained. On the following day the king, wishing to lay the blame upon the queen and the bad advice of the ambassador, sent the Secretary Conovel to the ambassador's house to express his resentment and his decision that the ambassador should not visit him or the queen until news came from France, whither he was sending on purpose to make remonstrance. The ambassador seemed pleased at their writing to the Most Christian, considering his affairs so well ordered that he need fear no representations. What they told him on his Majesty's behalf he took no account of whatever, as he received such orders not from that quarter but from his own sovereign, and so, with more words, the matter rested.
The ambassador, in visiting me, told me these particulars, their hasty resolutions here, and the duke's passion, justifying his own action and that of the queen and crying out at the wrong done to him in the sight of parliament and the whole Court. He asked my advice what to do to support the dignity of the Most Christian, suggesting that he wished to obtain audience to learn his Majesty's intentions, with the idea of abandoning not only the royal palace, but to withdraw from the city and await the orders of his master somewhere. I, of course, endeavoured to soothe him, but said he ought to try and smoothe matters between the king and queen and the two crowns. However, he remained constant to his purpose not to receive orders from the king here, be excluded from freely seeing the queen or appear like a prisoner confined to his own house. He seemed anxious that I should say something to the Duke of Buckingham, though he did not press this.
Accordingly I went to see the duke and tactfully led the conversation up to these events and the orders restricting the ambassador. I pointed out the various consequences that would ensue, not in order to support the cause of the ambassador, as he is so much disliked at this Court, but in order not to offend the Most Christian through him and break off a close understanding between the two kings. The duke seemed extremely sorry that matters had come to this pass; he had nothing whatever to do with it; the king had done everything himself, all he could obtain was that the ambassador should not be absolutely excluded from the Court, but if he wished to speak to the king or queen he must first obtain permission from his Majesty. This was only reasonable and usual in every Court. He went on to tell me the reason why his Majesty had taken offence, finding himself contemned in the presence of many gentlemen. If ambassadors meddle with things they ought not, they lose their own rights; there was example for arresting ambassadors; while his Majesty desired to maintain his graciousness and benignity the ambassador exceeded his commissions, committed malpractices in the realm, slandered the king and practically declared war on him, legitimate reasons for forfeiting all his rights. I rejoined by declaring that ambassadorial rights are common to all nations. Their offences must be visited on their masters. I pointed out the consequences of offending the Most Christian. I thought the king might rest satisfied by obtaining the ambassador's recall, which the Most Christian could not well refuse; meanwhile they need not change his relations with the queen, but the king should only see him when absolutely necessary, so he would be recalled in disgrace with his own master; otherwise the Most Christian would have to support him. He would desire nothing better than to make himself arbiter between the king and the queen and so make himself necessary to France.
Buckingham seemed much impressed by this speech, saying he would rather have lost every drop of blood than that this should have happened. In the present state of affairs he did not want such quarrels on his hands; but the king is determined, the stone is cast, there is no remedy and the Most Christian has no cause to complain since he had begun it by forbidding him to go to France from the Hague. He showed that the matter touched the king so nearly that no one could meddle with it without offending him. I said all I could to move him.
He seemed to take everything in excellent part and we went on to talk of pleasing topics only. Among these he told me of the queen's large heartedness and generosity. One day when he had constantly pressed her for a promise not to admit the ambassador she expressed astonishment at his insistence, saying that the offences done to the king her brother sufficed to have their ambassador arrested, added to the affront which she had received, without speaking of the odiousness of making her an instrument to hurt the Most Christian, when she is the sole support of all his needs. She would rather die than shut out her brother's ambassador. She was sorry that everything would fall upon her husband, who has too many enemies, without the additional disadvantage of having France unfriendly; but after constant pressure and the king's commands she declared she believed that the ambassador would do nothing improper against her will, and if his Majesty absolutely wished it she would obey.
I thought fit to tell the French ambassador of my offices. He was grateful, but being determined he carried out his purpose of obtaining a public audience of his Majesty. The king told him that as Blenville he had no occasion to see him, but as he was ambassador for the king's affairs he wished first to know in which character he appeared. The ambassador could not say and audience was refused him of the king or queen either. When she asked the king's permission he refused and she submitted. The ambassador immediately left the city, withdrawing to Greenwich after sending a gentleman to France. (fn. 3) The king will be served first through another express because he has had the ports closed.
The private quarrel between the king and queen is settled, as after the queen had asked for and obtained a long conference with the king, apart from all, they resumed sleeping together after being separated for two nights.
London, the 20th February, 1625 [M.V.].
Postscript.—At this moment two couriers have arrived from France, one for the king and one for the ambassador. They bring word of the signing of the peace. I do not know the details of the results or how they will take it here, but I have seen all the articles. The ambassador has asked from Greenwich for audience of the queen to communicate pressing news which he can only impart to her alone; the king, admitting the reasonableness of this, has given his permission, and the results are awaited.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 12.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
475. To the Ambassador in France.
Our Bailo has found the majority of the leading ministers opposed to the truce with Spain, and the Sultan recognises it as prejudicial, with a prudence beyond his years. The English ambassador has given the ministers a paper condemning the proposals of Monte Albano, which all welcomed except the Captain at Sea and Bairam Pasha, who were influenced by the liberal promises and gifts made to them by Monte Albano and the emperor's resident, who base their hopes on these two and the Sultan's mother and sister. The Caimecan, Callil and the Mufti remain firm against listening to the proposals, which they consider deceitful, and so long as they remain in power they are not likely to make headway. But Bairam Pasha eagerly desires the post of Caimecan, while the present holder, owing to his years, seems ready to retire. The imperial resident is supposed to be waiting for this change.
The ambassador of Prince Gabor (fn. 4) received great honours on leaving. The Prince is absorbed in the preparations for his marriage. The Turks may help if he acts in conjunction with the allied princes against the House of Austria, according to the state of the Persian war at the time, as the Porte seems well disposed toward him. By their advice he had not confirmed the peace of Hungary, and they would help him to take that crown again if Persia does not prevent it.
The like to the ambassadors in England and at the Hague.
Ayes, 128.Noes, 1.Neutral, 3.
[Italian.]
Feb. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
476. ZORZI GIUSTINIAN, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I took the earliest possible opportunity of calling upon the French ambassador about the truce. He wants to obtain a caticumaium from the Sultan to the Caimecan to break off the whole affair. This means giving presents amounting to at least 15,000 sequins. He is persuaded that the matter has not been abandoned, and undertook to speak to the ambassadors of England and the States on the subject. When I was at audience of the Caimecan the other day with those two ambassadors, he assured us when the question of the truce happened to come up, that he would not even see the person who came to negotiate it, and would not receive the letters from the Viceroy of Naples.
The French ambassador has just informed me that he told his suggestion to England, who said that although he had been a long time without letters from his king yet he would always concur in what we might decide. When Monte Albano was here, a person of credit suggested another way to him. namely to get some leading lawyers to show the Sultan that truces with the Spaniards are against the laws. This might prove a more effective and cheaper way. It appears from what the French ambassador says that he has orders to spend money to upset the truce, though in money matters he enjoys very little credit here.
The Vigne of Pera, the 21st February, 1625 [M.V.].
[Italian; deciphered.]
Feb. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Costantinopoli.
Venetian
Archives.
477. ZORZI GIUSTINIAN, Venetian Ambassador at Constantinople, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I wrote in my last of the instances made to me and the other ambassadors by France about Gabor. He has recently told me that he has instructions to learn if the other ambassadors have orders, and if so to treat jointly with Gabor's ministers here and arrange for him to attack the emperor, the Most Christian undertaking to contribute 10,000 crowns a month, but not to include him in the league for many reasons. France also told me that even if the other ambassadors had not yet received orders he was still to inform Gabor's ministers of his instructions and his master's readiness to pay his share and that he will place 40,000 crowns in the hands of merchants to be paid to Gabor as soon as he begins to move, and until orders reach the ambassadors. He told me that they expected the republic and England to fall in with this. He has not addressed himself to the resident here, but has sent a dragoman straight to Gabor with the necessary letters and instructions, asking him to send a gentleman here on purpose. The dragoman left some days ago.
France told me that he would inform England and the States to learn if they had any orders. The next day he told me that both of them welcomed his Majesty's decision; but England said he had received no letters from his king for some months and the Dutchman said the States would find it difficult to bear the cost.
The English ambassador has heard that the Pasha of Buda having recently represented to the Porte the uneasiness of the emperor because he never had received the approbation of the peace concluded and the consequent reluctance of his commissioners to treat upon certain points, the Caimecan, in order to reassure that sovereign, sent him a catecumaium of the king with orders to adjust these points. The French ambassador and I have not yet received any support for this, but as the term of the peace of Situan is about to expire the Caimecan will have to throw aside the ambiguity he has shown hitherto and decide one way or the other, according to what happens in Babylon.
The Vigne of Pera, the 21st February, 1625 [M.V.].
[Italian; deciphered.]
Feb. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
478. SIMON CONTARINI, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I have been to call upon the Cardinal nuncio (fn. 5) . He spoke of the present rumours of war and remarked that the Catholic King appeared to be directing his attention to naval matters in Flanders. In this connection the Dutch ambassadors told me that the Spaniards may have a certain number of ships, but few guns and exceedingly few sailors, so their provision was sure to be feeble. In the course of the conversation the Cardinal further told me that they have sent some one to England with letters from the king and queen mother inviting Buckingham over, promising him a welcome and to forget past quarrels. I asked if this was to treat for an alliance. The Cardinal replied, I do not think so. The Cardinal does not seem pleased with the conduct of the government here about the peace.
To the remark of the Ambassador Morosini, God grant now they have made peace with the Huguenots they will not do the same with the Spaniards, the Ambassador Carleton replied: Have no fear, they are so tied to us here that they cannot tear themselves apart without ruining themselves.
I spoke to the Dutch ambassadors about Buckingham's visit. Aerssens said he did not believe he would come. Aerssens also told me that the Duke of Savoy through his ambassador here had asked the English King for a number of his ships, and he meant to ask the States also, so that in conjunction with those of the Most Christian and Soubise they might prevent money and food passing from Spain to Genoa or soldiers into the Milanese. I do not know if this idea means a fresh attempt against Genoa, which cannot be taken withont a naval force.
The Prince of Savoy has arrived and is lodged in the Louvre. I called upon him and he showed me the utmost courtesy. The English ambassadors had called a few days before, but he did not treat them in the same way, so many who were present assured me.
Paris, the 21st February, 1625 [M.V.].
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Savoia.
Venetian
Archives.
479. MODERANTE SCARAMELLI, Venetian Ambassador in Savoy, to the DOGE and SENATE.
Cavoret has gone to Grenoble to see the Constable and will then go on to meet the prince, who has sent word to his Highness of his first visits to the king and queen mother. He asks how he shall conduct himself towards Buckingham, who is coming from England, to help matters in Italy, asserting that the Most Christian inclines to enter openly the league established between that crown, Denmark and the States.
His Highness summoned the English ambassador to dine with him on the morning of the 19th, that minister being more in favour than he has been of late owing to the good despatches brought back from England by the Ambassador of Savoy for his affairs. They sent the same night to the prince and got the ambassador to write to his king and to the English ambassadors now in Paris, with the object, so far as I can gather, of moving every stone against the Spaniards, and to bring back to its pristine state the union between France and England. The duke is anxious to get M. de Rohan and Soubise away from the kingdom, not so much to employ them with the troops whom they will bring across the mountains as to deprive the Huguenots of those leaders and make more certain of peace.
Turin, the 22nd February, 1626.
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]
Feb. 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
480. ZUANE PESARO, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the DOGE and SENATE.
I have informed your Serenity of the quarrel with the French ambassador and his decision to leave the Court. However, he came to see the queen privately, bringing letters from the queen her mother, performing the offices he thought proper. In the middle the king arrived, but only reverences and salutations passed. After spending a night in this city the ambassador returned to Greenwich, where he will await the orders of the Most Christian. These will tarry many days because the ports are not open and his expresses are stopped at the coast. His Majesty has also stayed his own expresses, the reason not being clear, but they say the duke delayed them in his own interests so as not to upset the negotiations of the king's ambassadors at that Court, as besides the general interest in the hopes that the Most Christian may help the King of Denmark with money, the duke aspires to accommodating the queen's household, ostensibly to her satisfaction, and as the consequence of this settlement to obtain the payment of the balance of her Majesty's dowry, which will come very opportunely for their needs here and for the duke's own plans. It causes amazement that with these interests the duke should have contrived the quarrels between the king and the ambassador upon a trivial pretext, through animosity for past offences or because he could not obtain the ambassador's recall. He may have been comforted by secret advices from France that the ambassador will be disowned in the event of a quarrel or dispute with his Majesty. They say, however, that by this last courier the ambassador has received permission to recross the sea. He will not do so, however, owing to the present dispute, as he means to leave here justified. But now the first heat is passed they wish it had not happened, resentment has not apparently grown deeper and generally they do not blame the ambassador. Everyone says that the patching up of this quarrel is a task befitting the prudence and influence of the most serene republic.
I told your Serenity of the arrival of the peace signed by the Most Christian and the Huguenot deputies. (fn. 6) The conditions are considered unfavourable to the Huguenots, though they cannot reject them for fear of putting themselves more in the wrong and of forfeiting the protection of the king here. The courier sent by the ambassadors has come more to justify them than to report the conclusion of the peace. He reports that the king's orders to get the unfavourable terms modified arrived before the signing, but they could not alter what had been agreed and they have sent a long account showing the peace to be necessary and beneficial; necessary for the public service and through the interposition of the friends of both crowns; the extreme need of la Rochelle and Montauban to allow them to get fresh provisions; the Duke of Rohan desired peace on these terms or he would throw up the cause; Rohan and Soubise will be rewarded and employed in the public cause; the King of Great Britain has satisfied his honour and is free to act against his enemies; the French relieved at home will act generously abroad and are already devoting attention to Germany, carrying on negotiations with a gentleman of Denmark to supply that king with 200,000 crowns; if the agreement had been delayed 24 hours everything was lost, owing to the Most Christian's leanings and because the French clergy offers great sums for the war.
It is said that the ambassadors have a secret promise from the Most Christian to demolish the fort, and they are said to have promised that the king here will arm in defence of la Rochelle if the Most Christian does not keep his word. Some think that as they try here to hearten the Rochellese in their disappointment over the terms, so his Majesty's ambassadors in France have caused those of the religion to give up hope of the king being able or willing to support them. They say that the peace has been made to ingratiate the duke with parliament, which lacks a pretext for complaint against him, as with the peace there is no occasion for the suspicion that the English ships were to be used against the Huguenots, which was considered Buckingham's principal crime.
Parliament continues without any decision of much moment; they are setting their house in order, have chosen those who are to speak, and arranged to celebrate the communion on the first of next month. Meanwhile they are waiting for a considerable number of the members, and others are detained because of the law terms for civil and criminal matters, at certain set times of the year.
The king sent letters to the parliament asking for a declaration that the sheriffs elected cannot sit, wishing in this way to shut out John Cuch (fn. 7) , a very bitter opponent of the duke. Parliament referred the matter to some deputies. It is thought they will not grant the king's request as they desire their privileges intact and to prevent his Majesty from excluding persons from the elections. However, they are somewhat divided, thinking that while they must not allow the best to be excluded parliament must not show itself so weak as to be unable to get on without the help of these leading men.
They have also chosen five committees for five different matters, to wit: the privileges of the House and the realm; religion; trade; the Courts of Justice and grievances. Speeches have been delivered. Someone, (fn. 8) to please the duke, proposed that superfluous ecclesiastical benefices should be taken from the rich and granted to poor ministers. This would serve the king well, as in the change he would obtain the annates for his own purse, at an earlier date. As the people complain that it is not possible to make good with the subsidies (con li sussidi non si puo supplire), the duke gives out that they ought thoroughly to confiscate all the goods of the Catholic recusants. It is thought that the duke wishes in this way to divert parliament from more important transactions.
Another spoke confusedly of the state of affairs, but returning to the matters left by the last parliament he said they ought first of all to ask for an account of the way in which the money granted by parliament of late years had been spent and enquire into the true causes of the ill success of the fleet. These remarks, which strike the duke more nearly, were made by a friend of his, Vice Admiral of the West, (fn. 9) and are interpreted as an attempt to feel the pulse of the members or draw down a decree that they must not deal with such matters, hoping in a thin house to have a majority of the duke's dependants, but the matter was adjourned, not as improper but untimely. The Courtiers have announced that the Catholics will promote such proposals, to induce the king to dissolve parliament in wrath, without any benefit.
The remaining transactions concern the Scotch lords, who had to submit to some changes in and additions to their charges. After much pressure they obtained leave to return to Scotland, probably with diminished enthusiasm and in dudgeon, especially as the Dunkirkers have taken eleven of their ships laden with divers merchandise, a very sensible loss, with their poverty, the more so because they have suffered no harm at sea for 200 years except from the English.
When the same Dunkirkers approached too near the county of Norfolk, for a ship which had run aground, the people, fearing a landing, withdrew from the coast, gave the alarm and lighted the beacons which they keep from hill to hill throughout the realm; but they say that the ship fell a prey to the English, who also captured another one on the coast of France.
The ambassador of Holland told me that the Dunkirkers are largely increasing their fleet, making provision against this country and the Dutch by daily captures, and Spinola is devoting all his attention to naval affairs, recognising the necessity. Here they are apparently hastening on a fleet of 60 ships, providing munitions and food with some diligence. The States declare they have their portion ready, as bound by the alliance, but many considerations would conspire for this if their alacrity corresponds with report and what is desired.
At the time when the States were urging his Majesty to harry the coasts of Spain to divert the Spaniards from relieving Porto Ricco, after a persistent rumour that the Dutch had captured it, two ships have arrived to confirm the event. As they could not hold the place they sacked and burned it.
Two other ships have arrived from the Persian Sea with news that the Spaniards from Goa with eight ships and 30 frigates have tried to surprise four English ships and four Dutch near Ormuz, which united and drove off the Spaniards in a two days' fight, doing them much hurt. It is stated that the King of Persia has sent some personages to his Majesty. We shall hear further particulars of these transactions. (fn. 10)
Amid the perpetual disputes between this nation and the Dutch, there are merchants who want to proceed to the East Indies to trade at Bantam in Java. They desire letters of permission from the king. The Dutch ambassador opposes this, as his countrymen keep that place close in their own interests, pointing out many inconveniences which may result between the two nations.
They have nominated a gentleman to go to Morocco, (fn. 11) more to gather information as to what advantages can be had in that part than for solid negotiations, as the merchants report the impossibility of obtaining any useful employment, the diminution of advantages from the king there, the division between the realms of Morocco and Fes and that the country has no ports adapted to render any service.
They are discussing some rearrangement of trade and farming out again the king's customs and tolls which have been interrupted. They have informed the Dutch of their intention to consider some way of obviating the offence caused by making reprisals, though with little hope of giving them complete satisfaction. However, I have caused the authority of your Serenity to prevail so far that I have already obtained the release of the greater part of the goods of the ship Faith, to the satisfaction of the agents of the parties interested. I have succeeded in satisfying all those who applied to me, and I hope that the residue, which is not yet dealt with, will be of small moment and finally yielded to reason. I rejoice at the results of my activity, as I am the only ambassador who has prevailed in a matter of this description.
I have your Serenity's instructions of the 30th ult. with advices of Constantinople about Gabor, which I will use to advantage.
London, the 27th February, 1625 [M.V.].
[Italian; the part in italics deciphered.]

Footnotes

1 Sir Heneage Finch.
2 To celebrate the coronation. They were Henry Montagu, Viscount Mandeville, made Earl of Manchester; Thomas Howard, Viscount Andover, made Earl of Berks; Thomas, Lord Wentworth of Nettlested, made Earl of Cleveland; Edmund, Lord Sheffield of Butterwick, made Earl of Mulgrave; Henry, Lord Danvers, made Earl of Danby; George, Lord Carew, made Earl of Totness; Robert Cary, Baron of Leppington, made Earl of Monmouth, and James Ley, the Treasurer, made Earl of Marlborough; S.P. Dom. vol. xx, No. 16. Salvietti, letter of 20th Feb., Brit. Mus. Add. MSS. 27962D. Gardiner, while claiming that Charles could not hope for any political benefit from these creations, is silent about any pecuniary profit therefrom for Buckingham. Hist. of England, vol. vi., page 50.
3 The quarters provided for the ambassador were at Durham House. He left for Greenwich on the 20th, but returned to Durham House on the 23rd. Birch: Court and Times of Charles I, vol. i, page 83. Durham House was on the south of the Strand, where the Adelphi now is.
4 Paul Kereztessy: Negotiations of Sir Thomas Roe, page 478.
5 Bernadino Spada, the papal nuncio in France, had been made Cardinal priest of S. Stefano in Monte Celio, on the 19th of January, 1626.
6 On the 5th of February.
7 He means Sir Edward Coke.
8 Sir Benjamin Rudyard on the 20th February. Journal of the House of Commons, vol. i, page 817.
9 Sir John Eliot.
10 The Star and a Flemish ship from Surat reached Dartmouth and Plymouth on the 4/14 February, the former having on board Nukud Aly Beg, ambassador from the King of Persia. The fight took place on the first days of February, 1625, in sight of Gombroon, the allied forces being as stated, and the Portuguese having eight galleons and sixteen frigates. Cal. S.P. Col. (East Indies), 1625–9, pages 61, 93, 144.
11 Presumably Captain John Harrison. See his report on the Barbary States, written in September of this year. State Papers Foreign, Barbary States (Morocco).