Venice
August 1670, 16-31

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Institute of Historical Research

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Allen B. Hinds (editor)

Year published

1937

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245-262

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'Venice: August 1670, 16-31', Calendar of State Papers Relating to English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 36: 1669-1670 (1937), pp. 245-262. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=90277 Date accessed: 26 October 2014.


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August 1670, 16–31

Aug. 16.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Firenze.
Venetian
Archives.
273. Ottavian Valier, Venetian Secretary at Florence, to the Doge and Senate.
Two English gentlemen of rank have arrived, sent by the king of England and the duke of Kiorche, his brother, in the capacity of envoys to perform a complimentary office with the Grand Duke upon the death of his father and his own assumption of the ducal dignity. (fn. 1) They were fetched from the house of the resident by the Court coaches, all in mourning as they were themselves, including their households although the number of persons was restricted. They are lodged at the palace and will be defrayed, as is the custom with other envoys. They are being entertained by hunting in the neighbourhood as they expressed a desire for this.
Florence, the 16th August, 1670.
[Italian.]
Aug. 16.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
274. The steward of Viscount Falcombridge (fn. 2) came to the doors of the Collegio and asked to speak to a secretary. I went to him by order of the Savii and he said that the ambassador had directed him to come and say that he had received letters from the king to present to the doge personally and he asked for audience as soon as possible. Secondly, he was waiting for a reply to the memorial presented at his first audience. Thirdly he had with him a letter of the duke of York which he had a difficulty about presenting because of the title, as he was styled “Royal Highness” by the States of Holland and other northern powers, but he had heard from the duke, who directed him to present this and other letters without asking the republic to alter its ancient use, if he is assured that the style is the same as that used with the dukes of Orleans.
On reporting the above to the Savii I was directed to tell the steward that, first that the functions of the next three days prevent audience being granted to him before Monday, when the ambassador can have it at the usual hour. By that time the secretary may have already taken the reply on the last audience. On the third point, what he asked had already been offered, about the style used with the duke of Orleans. He then said, I am sorry to give you bad news, but only for yourself, not to report to their lordships that the ambassador will have to leave in a few weeks, having received letters from the king, who needs him, because he has the charge of lieutenant general on the borders between England and Scotland, and he is needed during the negotiations for a close union between the two countries. But before long some one will come from the king, I cannot say whether as resident or ambassador, but I think it will be ambassador. I thanked him for the communication and he went away, while I made a further report to the Savii.
[Italian.]
Aug. 18.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Prinicipi.
Venetian
Archives.
275. Viscount Falcombridge came into the Collegio and spoke in English in conformity with the memorial, of which he gave a copy in Italian, as usual. He afterwards gave a letter of the king. Both were read and are below.
The doge said they were deeply grieved to hear of the loss of so worthy a princess. The ambassador then asked permission to read a paper, as he could not express himself very well in Italian. This was granted and he read a paper concerning the title given to the duke of York, about which the duke had charged him to find out what was done in such cases and on the duke receiving assurances on the subject he was now directed to hand in the letter. This was done, it was read and is below.
The doge said that the duke had their particular regard and they would always be pleased to receive his letters. A reply would be sent to him in due form. The ambassador made some remarks in Italian in conformity with the above and after the doge had replied, the usual reverences were made and he left.
The Exposition. (fn. 3)
The king, my master, thought he might well omit to inform your Serenity of the death of his dear and only sister, the duchess of Orleans, since she was not a sovereign princess. But with the most friendly relations that exist with this republic he has chosen to do so, imparting this very great loss, which cuts him to the quick. He sends this letter knowing that you will sympathise with him.
[Italian.]
Attached
in filza.
276. Charles II, king of Great Britain etc. to Domenico Contarini, Doge of Venice, and to the republic.
Informing them of the death of his sister, Henrietta Maria, duchess of Orleans, suddenly snatched away, only a few days after she had left his shores to return to her own hearth.
Dated at the palace of Whitehall, the 14th July, 1670.
Signed Carolus Rex. Countersigned: Arlington.
[Latin.]
Attached
in filza.
277. James, duke of York and Albany, earl of Ulster etc. to Domenico Contarini, doge of Venice and to the republic.
Desires to take the opportunity of the embassy of Viscount Falcombridge to express his regard for the republic by the ambassador.
Dated at London, the 6th January, 1669.
Signed: Jacobus.
[Latin.]
Aug. 20.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia,
Venetian
Archives.
278. Zuane Moresini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The duke of Buckingham, envoy extraordinary of the British king, is ceaselessly receiving demonstrations of esteem and confidence from the king and all the Court. Every day he is in the royal coach accompanying the footsteps of his Majesty in the places to which he is taken for his entertainment and to suit his temperament. Access is open to him even on occasions and at times which are most reserved and private. At reviews of the troops, at hunts and at walks in the gardens and park the duke has the honour of never leaving the king's side, not even for an instant. The day before yesterday he was at Versailles where he was admitted to the royal table in the gardens, not for any reason of formality or ceremonial, but out of pure friendliness and confidence. I have learned on excellent authority that the king unbosomed himself at length to him on the question of the boundaries and dependencies in the Low Countries. His Majesty insists above everything that the British king shall not favour the admission of the States of Holland to the mediation and arbitrament, as is proposed and desired by the queen. The Dutch are considered here more as partisans than as judges in the present case, especially in the aversion and the animosity displayed against France upon every occasion. From the despatches of the Ambassador Colbert this government conceived the hope of seeing the British king disposed to persuade the States to refuse this interposition spontaneously. The king has expressed as much to the English duke here and the fact that he listened favourably makes them believe that he may give the final touches to the present affair, which is of such great consequence. The exceeding influence of the duke in England, his distinguished rank and his position as a minister are constant stimulants to this Court to leave no means untried to move him to second their desires here. This present mission of the duke to his Majesty is considered here a peculiar piece of good fortune.
Paris, the 20th August, 1670.
[Italian.]
Aug. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti,
Venetian
Archives.
279. To the Ambassador Mocenigo in England.
The Senate forwards a copy of the reply given to the office of the Ambassador Falcombrige upon the death of the duchess of Orleans, together with a letter in reply to that from the king, to be presented at a special audience. They also forward a reply to the duke of York, which he is to present at a suitable opportunity.
Ayes, 103. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti,
Venetian
Archives.
280. To the King of Great Britain.
Appreciation of his Majesty's friendly correspondence in communicating the death of his sister, the Duchess of Orleans. Their concern in all the affairs of his house intensifies their regret on this occasion, which is augmented by the rare qualities of that princess. Compliments.
Ayes, 103. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
281. To the Duke of Yorch.
Acknowledge his letter, received by the hand of Viscount Falcombrighe, to which they respond with a like expression of cordiality. Wishing him many years, with every prosperity.
Ayes, 103. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 21.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
282. That Viscount Falcombrighe, ambassador extraordinary of the British king be summoned to the Collegio and that the following be read to him:
We have received the news of the death of the duchess of Orleans. With our great share in all that concerns his Majesty's family we shall acquaint you with the real sentiments of the Senate upon so unexpected an accident, which not only deprives the world of the sister of so great a king but of a personage endowed with such rare qualities. You may represent to his Majesty our very sensible and lively grief and assure him of our ready correspondence, and of our constant desire that every prosperity may attend him and his house. We would further confirm our readiness in all conjunctures to manifest and verify those affectionate observances we desire to pay towards that crown. (fn. 4)
Ayes, 103. Noes, 0. Neutral, 2.
[Italian.]
Aug. 21.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
283. Viscount Falconbridge came into the Collegio and the office decreed yesterday by the Senate was read to him. He asked in Italian for leave to take a copy. This was granted and he asked that the secretary might read it. He then handed in the memorial, which is below. After it had been read the doge said that he might be sure of their forwardness in anything to advance trade. Their lordships would consider his memorial and let him have the answer.
The ambassador asked for a speedy reply because of the orders from his king. He said there was a desire to destroy this trade, which was solely for the benefit of the republic and detrimental to the English nation, as to take away the currants, which are not necessaries, they bring money, since there are no goods which they can dispose of in the islands. After the customary reverences he passed into the other room to take a copy of the office read to him. After the secretary had finished writing he said to him and the secretary repeated it, that the currant trade was advantageous to the republic but detrimental to England. He then said that at his departure, which was very near, he felt sure he would have an abundant good despatch to take back to the Court. He had another more important business which obliged him to ask for audience early in next week. He asked me, the secretary, to get their Excellencies to see that his business about the salt fish and the other matters may be despatched as soon as possible. I promised to report this and as to audiences I was directed to tell him that they would always be arranged whenever he asked. With this he departed.
The Exposition. (fn. 5)
In previous audiences I have expressed the goodwill of the king, my master for the continuation of trade between his subjects and those of this republic, and I have received assurances from your Serenity and their lordships of your readiness to respond in this particular, so I have no doubt of your ready concurrence in the matter which brings me here this morning, about the trade of the English in the islands of Zante and Cephalonia, where the subjects of my king have carried on a trade of no slight importance for many years. But, as frequently happens in the best constitutions and governments, abuses spring up in the course of years, it is necessary to find fresh laws and arrangements as a remedy, and it seems to me that such is the present state of trade in those places.
The Proveditori and ministers of your Serenity, observing the importance of this trade and desiring to advance their own interests, have taken part in buying and selling the fruit, which is very mischievous in general though for their private advantage. I believe that this government, as well as most others, has found it very necessary to forbid its governors to interest themselves in this way in the commerce of the places where they reside, since it is otherwise impossible that their private interests should not appeal to them where they ought to be impartial judges. Our merchants, finding themselves injured in this way consented, or rather were forced to come to a composition with the Proveditori of those times, namely that they should pay a piece of eight per thousand on all the goods taken from those islands so that the Proveditori should abstain from buying and selling. But they have returned to their former practice and yet they compel our merchants to pay the piece of eight per thousand. They have not complained of this before because of the disturbances in England, and also because of the republic's war in Candia.
Now that God has granted peace to my master and this state and both are anxious to forward the trade of their subjects, it seems to me necessary to remedy abuses, not only by your Serenity directing the Proveditori not to exact the piece of eight per thousand but by enjoining them not to concern themselves in the purchase and sale of these goods, directly or indirectly, because, although this republic has on other occasions provided for this same thing, it is now more than necessary to find some more effective expedient to establish and secure that matter.
There is another notable prejudice from which our merchants suffer, by virtue of a decree of the Senate, which I doubt not it will see fit to abolish or amend, namely a security of 2000 pieces of eight which our merchants give to the magistrates for every ship before lading it, so that contraband shall not enter. It is impossible for the merchants to prevent the sailors from committing some impropriety, although of slight value, and it seems to me contrary to justice that the pledge of a merchant should be subject to the faults of others. It would be right for the republic to set searchers on each ship during the lading, to keep watch until it is completed. This would facilitate the trade of the islands, reducing the security to a thousand pieces whenever the ship left before being searched, which is thought to be the chief object of the surety. Then, when any misdeed was found, justice would proceed against the one who committed it, not against the one who gave the security, because it has happened that some malicious person has done the wrong for the purpose of injuring the security. Further your Serenity's officials bring criminal prosecutions against our merchants, who are innocent of such baseness, committed possibly by others, when they would consider their quiet and credit at a higher price. Further your officials, under colour of such securities frequently have our ships stopped, threatening our merchants and forcing them to agree to unjust demands if they wish to obtain their despatch.
I must also tell your Serenity that our merchants complain of being subjected to another unjust practice, in that the customs officials refuse to receive the duties in current money, if it is not of weight, when there is none, so that the merchants are compelled to pay four to five thousand pieces of eight every year for depreciation although the money is sent there from your Serenity's own mint. This money is afterwards applied by the officials for their own profit and not for that of the state.
Finally I ask, in the king's name, that all these matters may be despatched as soon as possible, since the state will receive an equal benefit by removing these and all other difficulties, under which trade languishes, especially as the subjects of those islands do not receive or exchange manufactured goods from my king's subjects, who buy the fruit for cash; and also because those subjects are the great if not the only traders for the fruit produced by those islands, and also because of the great advantage to this state from the trade of my king in those islands; lastly because those fruits are rather superfluous than necessary and if my king's subjects withdrew from that trade not only the islanders, but your Serenity's duties would suffer an immense loss. So I ask again for a speedy and favourable reply.
[Italian.]
Aug. 22.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
284. Piero Mocenigo, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
That which the Count of Molina was unable to achieve during the time of his lengthy embassy in London he has concluded in a few months of negotiation at the Court of Madrid, having made himself a mediator between them and the English minister Godolphin upon the questions of America. It is superfluous to remind your Excellencies that with the attraction of that trade for the English they have attempted, even since the last peace, to harass the ports there by reprisals; and that the Spaniards, more jealous than ever, have so far held back, accusing England of breaking the universal peace between the two crowns, made without the supposed limits this side of the line or other interpretations. Knowing from experience that they would always turn a deaf ear in England to such remonstrances, Molina applied himself to procure quiet for America in another way. He suggested to the Council there that they should grant the English the title of the conquests made from Spain, so that by bringing them amicably to a fresh peace agreement in which things can be better specified for the future, and by giving up only in name what has already been lost, they need not quarrel over the rest or expose that most important trade to further risk. Thus the urgency and the hope of Spain to have those seas and countries in peace once and for all has brought them to day in the new treaty to strip themselves of their claims to the territories lost. England was unable to promise less than peace in order to obtain confirmation of the lawful possession of Jamaica and of the other conquests in America, especially as the ships of this nation are to be admitted to all the Spanish ports for their requirements. Upon the point of trade there is not a word in favour of the English, but whereas hitherto they have profited by reprisals, carried out by armed force, they will in the future introduce themselves quietly into the ports and little by little into the trade. Spain will have purchased a peace that may possibly bring her no more advantage than the war might have done her mischief.
The English believe that they have dealt with Spain to their advantage and Mons. Colbert, who sees his own trade more stranded than ever, never ceases to marvel at the facility with which the Catholic agrees to everything for a peace. He told me that the duke of Buckingham, when received with honour by the Most Christian at St. Germain, as your Serenity will have heard from the spot, would not venture to speak to the king about including Holland in the arbitration. For the rest the States had spared him the trouble by declaring to the French ambassador Pompona at the Hague that they were averse and altogether indifferent, rejoicing only to learn that the boundaries were settled and causes of dispute removed.
Sig. Van Beuninghen, who is preparing to depart, confirmed as much to me. I am constantly getting further evidence to bear out what I wrote in Nos. 146 and 149 that his object was to introduce into the arbitration a regular separation of the boundaries from the Spanish Netherlands and from the French. I learn on good authority that he received the answer that this was not the time to undertake such great transactions in the king's minority, as neither the queen nor any minister would dare to risk it. It would have to be postponed to some other time so as not to expose to danger the interests of the monarchy or the mediators to censure. There are not wanting those who consider it advantageous for Spain in the present state of affairs to become intimate with France, for the more easy recovery of what has been lost although in the mean time there is the undoubted expense of the garrisons in all the fortresses along the frontier.
Your Excellencies will have heard from nearer home of the encounter between seven Algerine vessels and two English ships of war. In spite of their superiority in numbers the corsairs gained no advantage except the death of the two captains. (fn. 6) The Vice Admiral Alen, weary of his ill fortune and of his lack of success against the Algerians, has petitioned for leave to return home in order to rest and recover from the indispositions contracted at sea. If so it is believed that Sir [Edward] Spragg will remain to command the squadron. Two English ships which arrived at the port of Tunis had a dispute with the French about entering. (fn. 7) Here they have protested to the Ambassador Colbert that the fleet of England will treat the French in the same manner when they are entering Algiers, where for the future difficulties will be removed.
The king here is greatly concerned about the construction of the galleys to be used at Tanger. In a few days he will be sending the gentleman who was to begin them to Pisa and Genoa. (fn. 8) It is possible that for their armament he may take a turn in the state of your Serenity to provide sailors, of which they may be short. He is only waiting for the return of Lord Arlington from the country and on his arrival I will keep an eye for what concerns the service of your Serenity.
Acknowledges receipt of the ducali of the 26th ult. Recommends the case of Galilei's poor widow who is in need of something to maintain her until the state sees fit to complete the sum.
London, the 22nd August, 1670.
[Italian.]
Aug. 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
285. To the Proveditore da Mar, Bernardo.
Enclose a copy of the memorial of the English ambassador about currants. He is to see that the orders of the Senate issued from 1662 onwards are rigorously carried out. He is especially charged to see that the merchants are well treated, that their ships are not detained or impeded and that trade is facilitated as much as possible, and to take care that past disorders are not renewed.
For the enforcement of this resolution it is decided that the Council of Ten shall deliberate upon the matter. A decision is also required about the weight of reals.
Ayes, 126. Noes, 8. Neutral, 8.
[Italian.]
Aug. 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
286. To the Ambassador Mocenigo in England.
Enclose a copy of the exposition of the British ambassador extraordinary and of the office to be read to him. This is to serve not only for his information but in order that he may keep to the same tenor if there is occasion to speak on the subject.
Ayes, 126. Noes, 8. Neutral, 8.
[Italian.]
Aug. 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
287. That the Five Savii alla Mercanzia be charged to take exact information upon the exposition of the English ambassador, sending for the merchants, and also about the weight of reals. That the two Proveditori lately returned from the Islands be also required to give evidence. The same Five Savii are also charged to give their consideration to the question whether, on the other side, recourse should be had to that crown with respect to the nationals of the most serene republic and of this same trade from the Venetian point of view.
Ayes, 126. Noes, 8. Neutral, 8.
[Italian.]
Aug. 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
288. That a copy of the memorial of the English ambassador be sent to the Capi of the Council of Ten who shall be asked to decide what they consider to be fitting with respect to the disorders in the currant trade, to the end that the trade of the Islands and of the Levant may receive that attention and advantage which is so desirable for the public and private service.
Ayes, 126. Noes, 8. Neutral, 8.
[Italian.]
Aug. 23.
Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
289. That the following be sent to the British ambassador, Viscount Falcombrige, to be read to him:
With regard to the recent representations of your Excellency, necessary and vigorous decisions have been taken in order to prevent irregularities and to remove the grievances of the merchants. This is in accordance with the Senate's desire to cooperate actively in everything calculated to promote trade and to facilitate the flow of traffic. Your Excellency may rest assured that we desire to preserve and increase trade and to show regard for a nation that is so highly esteemed.
The question of the securities given by ships has been referred to the magistrates, with instructions to give a speedy decision. (fn. 9)
Ayes, 126. Noes, 8. Neutral, 8.
[Italian.]
Aug. 24.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
290. I, Nicolo Cavanis, ducal notary, went yesterday evening, by order, to the house of the English ambassador and read him the office of that evening decided in the Senate, leaving a copy. He asked me to thank your Excellencies for it and said he hoped to be in the Collegio on Monday morning to do so in person. With that I took leave and went.
[Italian.]
Aug. 25.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
291. Viscount Falcombridge came into the Collegio and gave the following memorial to me, the secretary, to read. After it had been read the doge said: Inquiry will be made and everything done to give satisfaction not only to the king but to all in the matter of justice. Their lordships will take the matter in hand and will cause a reply to be given promptly.
The ambassador added: Your Serenity may believe that the proofs of these things are very clear, and I have found two letters on this matter with the commands of his Majesty, who lays great stress upon it, and to one letter written to your Serenity on the subject no reply has ever been given. The doge replied that some decision would certainly be taken speedily, as was only reasonable. With this, after the usual reverences, the ambassador departed.
The Memorial.
By special command of my king I am come to draw attention to an affair of certain merchants here, under the name of George Hayles, at present consul. My king has written previously, on 20 November 1663 to your Serenity about it, thought without result. (fn. 10) It is a debt of 9000 ducats due by Rocco Fustononi, a subject of yours. To avoid payment he has had recourse to the magistracy of the Piovego, and by various devices has for more than seven years twisted about in all your Courts, while continuing to enjoy the advantage of this considerable sum. He is also gaining time by some new suits at the Avogaria and by Vacui in the Quarantia where the matter has been pending for over three years upon a point of order, not of substance. Such methods, contrary to all reason and good conscience, cause astonishment to the whole mart where the merchants are well informed about the matter. This Fustononi knows himself to be in the wrong but he steadily refuses to submit to the decision of impartial persons, so I am obliged to appeal to your Serenity to appoint judges so that this matter may be settled without further delay. I can assure your Serenity that such justice will never be denied to the subjects of your Serenity in my king's dominions, more particularly merchants, who ought to be treated with every favour and consideration in affairs of this kind. I may also remind your Serenity of the sum of 998 ducats due to the same consul by the Avogadori di Comun, upon which I have not yet received the satisfactory answer that was promised. I only ask for justice and assure your Serenity that I shall never fail to correspond. (fn. 11)
[Italian.]
Aug. 25.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
292. The secretary of Viscount Falcombridge came to the door of the Collegio and asked to say a word to a secretary. I went, by order of the Savii and he told me that as the ambassador was pressed to despatch he must ask his Serenity for audience on Wednesday, Thursday being a festival. Drawing out a memorial and running his eye over it to refresh his memory, the secretary said: the ambassador has an instruction from his Majesty to prefer a request on all that is put forward by the Consul Harby, who is at Zante, who is a man of this character (un huomo di tal qual natura). But the ambassador, knowing that such requests might prove unreasonable, has commanded me to tell your lordship that he will cause the consul to accept whatever is decided, and he wishes it to be understood that he makes the representation only as a matter of form, not to be pressed, as it is never his intention to exert himself in a matter which cannot accord with the interests of the most serene republic. He went on: it is certain that the 150 pieces of cloth will injure the manufactures of Venice, which is unreasonable. I do not know about the casks but their manufacture is similar. A tax for ransoming slaves is paid in England also. The murdered consul, Thomas Harby, was uncle of the present one. Three were guilty of the crime. One has suffered the extreme penalty, a second has been condemned to the galleys. The punishment of the third is asked, but if nothing more can be done he must rest satisfied with what has been done so far.
[Italian.]
Aug. 27.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Francia.
Venetian
Archives.
293. Zuane Moresini, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the Doge and Senate.
The Spanish ambassador has been to see me at this house, and took the occasion to express his fears and apprehensions of the invasion of the Spanish possessions in Flanders. The most considerable matter that I have succeeded in discovering and which I recognise to be worthy of the state's knowledge is the result of numerous conferences between the king, the ministers and the duke of Buckingham, the British envoy. Many of the articles and conclusions ventilated have reached my ears and I think it my duty to give your Excellencies an account.
Buckingham has been urged by the king here to persuade the British king on his return to contract an ever increasing union and confidence with this side, to the detriment of Holland. The king and ministers entered at length into the reasons and motives, to prevail upon the duke to show the desirability of this. I know as a fact that the duke showed a strong inclination to fall in with their wishes on this side. At the same time he intimated that before his Britannic Majesty can consent to the declarations which are desired here, he believed that it would be necessary to decide to establish considerable advantages in trade for England on both sides of the line, without which it would not be possible for them there to consent to any negotiation or business. If the British king should receive from France advantages equal to those which he at present enjoys as chief in the triple alliance, he would, without hesitation, prefer confidential relations with this kingdom to those which he now cherishes with the States of Holland.
The memory of the insults inflicted by the United Provinces upon the royal dignity and upon their arms was deeply engraved on the hearts of everyone in England. The British king would use for his own advantage the very serious difficulties in which the States now find themselves, in which he recognises that he is not able alone to destroy their vigour and power. That king has a peculiar regard personally for his Most Christian Majesty combined with affection and intimacy, and if it were left to him alone he would overcome the various difficulties; he would devote his energies to facilitate all the means calculated to promote advantages and increase confidence. Nevertheless Buckingham pointed out as a great obstacle the very careful estimate made by order of the British king of the number of vessels which constitute the universal commerce of Europe. This amounts to some 24,000, of which over 16,000 are in the power and at the free disposition of the Dutch. The United Provinces ought in any case to feel the pinch first of all at sea as in their possessions on land they were strongly protected against losses by numerous strong places, all of them considerable.
Before entering upon the proposed rupture with the States various measures are necessary between the two kingdoms for the purpose of removing the jealousies and misgivings of their neighbours and to reassure the Catholic Court about the intentions of the two crowns of France and England. The question was a serious one in itself and the consequences most weighty. His Catholic Majesty could rest assured in the mean time of the entire readiness of the British king for the union and confidence. The most certain means for carrying their reciprocal intentions into 17–(25) effect would be to ventilate them opportunely in the Councils of both kingdoms with due care and a constant goodwill to do that which will turn out happily for the common service. Buckingham assured the king here of the utmost readiness on the part of his master to join in to realise the wishes and profit of this side provided they concede to England advantages in conformity with her own services and wishes. The duke also bound himself with the utmost solemnity to do his part in inspiring the heart of the British king with sentiments equivalent to their intentions on this side.
With the personal animosity of the king against the States of Holland, with the ill feeling which persists and is constantly increasing between this crown and the United Provinces it will prove, in my opinion, an exceedingly difficult matter for ministers to restrain the course of some royal enterprise against these same States. The thing that seems to be at present quite inevitable is a naval union between France and England to the detriment of the Dutch on both sides of the line. This may possibly be followed up, at an opportune moment, by an attack on the States by land if they are able to find some means calculated to allay the apprehensions and misgivings of the Spaniards and the other neighbouring powers.
None the less this grave project is bound up with numerous difficulties and possible variations. The very high credit which this duke of Buckingham enjoys in the parliament of England makes them conceive certain hopes here of union and agreement. In the mean time the most distinguished marks of regard and confidence continue to be showered on the duke. In three days' time he will be moving towards the Court of England from whence your Excellencies will receive more certain information about projects so considerable; and I will send word of all that I succeed in finding out.
Paris, the 27th August, 1670.
[Italian.]
Aug. 27.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
294. The Secretary of the English ambassador extraordinary came to the door of the Collegio and asked to speak with a secretary. I went by order of the Savii when he said that the ambassador had been overtaken by his usual pains and was obliged to ask the doge to excuse him for not coming to the appointed audience. To avoid inconvenience he had given his secretary a memorial to present in the Collegio or to leave it in my hands. Being commanded to receive it, I did so and it is below.
The secretary added that the ambassador could not delay his departure so he would ask audience for Tuesday, to take leave. Accordingly he asked for a speedy and favourable reply on all the heads set forth, repeating all the heads of his past expositions, one by one.
The Memorial. (fn. 12)
The replies to my memorials have been so kind and favourable that I must conclude that they have been acceptable. Encouraged by the readiness I have heard expressed here to respond to my king's wishes, I ask, in his name, that you will allow his subjects, trading in the Levant Islands the right to lade 150 pieces of English cloth yearly as well as 250 empty casks, without paying duty or any imposition, as the cloth and casks have to be transported to the Morea for the benefit of those subjects. With regard to the cloth, the Senate granted a favour on the 10th September 1636, of which a copy is below.
The same merchants represent to my king that they are subjected to a yearly tax for the redemption of slaves, and I am directed by his Majesty to ask for the abolition of this tax, for the facilitation of trade. I am also to ask that justice may be done against the murderers of Thomas Harby, the late consul in those islands.
Finally I am directed to recommend to your Serenity the persons of Sir Clement Harby, consul in those islands, and Thomas Obson, merchant, dwelling in this city, to give a hearing to their just instances touching the trade of this city or without it. I think I shall not have responded too well to the innumerable favours received here in pressing for a favourable decision to these requests, were I not constrained to do so by order of the king, my lord.
Attached,
filza.
295. Resolution of the Senate on 10 September, 1636, concerning the trade in currants, and the disposal of English cloth. (fn. 13)
[Italian.]
Aug. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
296. Piero Mocenigo, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
The duke of Buckingham has not found them ready in France to give ear to his suggestions about the arbitration, the Most Christian being too averse from admitting the Dutch, as your Excellencies will have heard. As there remains only the Court of Spain to overcome, commissions are being stiffened and the queen will be urged, in her prudence, to remove the difficulties. From every quarter the Dutch are protesting their indifference and if they will speak to the same tune at Madrid that Court will dismiss its fears that if the States are not called in about the boundaries still less will they appear to guarantee the peace of Aix la Chapelle in case of need. This is to suppose that the alliance and the arbitration are all one affair, whereas they are naturally diverse and France declares that one is different from the other.
They are sending to the Resident Godolphin in Spain the approval of the last treaty about America. This is coming to be recognised more and more as advantageous to this crown. It is so true that under the cover of occurrencies they feel confident of introducing trade with the Spanish ports that Van Beuninghen, being jealous of this, told me that Spain ought in all fairness to grant the same facilities to Dutch ships, as exclusion would be interpreted as hostility. Best of all would be to open the ports to trade and to charge the goods with substantial impositions, which would all flow into the royal exchequer. Even now the smallest part of the fleet is for the king and only a small portion is for the Spanish merchants.
The same Van Beuninghen told me that he has recently received orders from the States to stay on in London until Buckingham's return from France. I fancy that he has become very jealous over a report circulated that the king of France is making a fresh attempt to purchase Tanger. This report has no better foundation in fact than a considerable outlay by the king here upon that fortress and the mole, and the disappearance of the hope of establishing correspondence with Taffilet, who has refused it to the Ambassador Arondel and to the minister of the States of Holland, who went to offer it, as he does not desire correspondence with Christian princes.
Upon these grounds it may be that Van Beuninghen bases his suspicions. He says that that post would be of the very greatest importance to the Most Christian, at the mouth of the Mediterranean and opposite Spain now that France is increasing her armaments every day while at the same time enlarging the Levant trade with the preparations being made in Provence for a new company. This ought to open the eyes of all the other powers who are interested.
The new king of Denmark is also keeping the Dutch on tenterhooks, as he seems disposed to attach himself to the French side. This would lead to very many changes in the Sound and cause an upset among the Northern powers, which they would prefer to see added to the alliance. As the Dutch are showing jealousy of every sort of person there is much talk of a treaty with the Elector of Cologne, to elect the Chevalier di Bouglione as his coadjutor. (fn. 14) Van Beuninghen says that the States will have their eye on this and for things to turn out in accordance with the intentions of the French would have the worst consequences.
The Count of Solre has since arrived from Flanders, on behalf of the governor Monte Rei, to compliment their Majesties here. He performed his office these last days with all the royal House, being introduced by Sir [Charles] Cotterel, master of the Ceremonies.
News has reached the Secretary Arlington by way of France of the office performed in the Collegio by the Ambassador Falcombridge. He remarked to me that the question of the salt fish deserved consideration as being more for the advantage of the subjects of your Serenity than of the English merchants. He added that the permission for the viscount to return home, in accordance with his urgency, will have reached him. In the mean time the supporters of the Secretary Darington out there are exerting themselves for his restoration to favour. Through the boundless kindness of the duke of Hyorch they have already succeeded in stopping the offices in favour of Sauel. The king had not yet granted him his pardon for the past offences against the Most Christian but it was nearly settled that this Darington should remain at Venice in the capacity of Secretary resident to assist in the affairs of the merchants. But so far all is uncertain and is not worthy of definite consideration by your Excellencies.
London, the 29th August, 1670.
[Italian.]
Aug. 29.
Senato,
Secreta.
Dispacci,
Inghilterra.
Venetian
Archives.
297. Piero Mocenigo, Venetian Ambassador in England, to the Doge and Senate.
Petitions that he may be recalled after having served two years. He has strained his fortune and his capacities to the uttermost. He imagines that the Ambassador Faulcombridge will have left Venice by this time and he hopes to receive a similar permission to return.
London, the 19/29 August, 1670.
[Italian.]
Aug. 30. Senato,
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
298. That a notary extraordinary of the ducal chancery be sent this evening to read the following to the English ambassador extraordinary:
There has been no time for a decision by the magistrates upon the points raised about salt fish. The Senate hopes that the orders which have been issued will suffice to show the disposition of the republic to give satisfaction to the merchants of a nation that is so much esteemed. With regard to his last memorial orders have been issued for information to be taken and directions have been sent to the Proveditore of Zante to make inquiries there. Sir Harby, the new consul at Zante and Thomas Obson will always be heard readily and every facility will be afforded to them. Steps have been taken to ensure a speedy decision in the suit against Rocco Fustinoni. (fn. 15)
Ayes, 115. Noes, 0. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Aug. 30.
Senato.
Secreta.
Deliberazioni,
Corti.
Venetian
Archives.
299. To the Proveditore of Zante.
Enclose copy of an exposition by the English ambassador. He is to take steps to see that justice is done in the matter of the homicide. He is to listen to Sir Clement Harby, the new consul there, and to afford him every facility. The Senate will wait to receive information from him upon the other matters contained in the memorial.
Ayes, 115. Noes, 0. Neutral, 1.
[Italian.]
Aug. 31.
Collegio,
Secreta.
Esposizioni,
Principi.
Venetian
Archives.
300. I, Nicolo Cavanis, went by order to the house of the English ambassador to read to him the decision of the Senate, of which I left a copy. He got his secretary to tell me that he had been to the door of the Collegio three hours before to ask audience for Tuesday, to take leave, as he had orders not to put off his departure any longer, and he had been told that your Excellencies had descended in the Senate, so that he left without an appointment. He could have put off the request to Friday, so that he might receive a definite final answer to his memorials, as he would like to leave with this consolation. He asked me to report this. With that I took my leave and departed.
[Italian.]

Footnotes

1 Mr. Jas. Hamilton and Mr. Saville. They arrived on Friday the 9th; had audience on the 12th and left on the 18th, Hamilton for Rome and Saville for Leghorn and England. Hamilton to Arlington on Aug. 12; Finch to Arlington on Aug. 9/19. S.P. Tuscany Vol. xi.
2 This seems to have been Dodington, who had been pardoned and restored to his position as secretary. Falcombridge reports sending him. S.P. Venice, Vol. xlvii, fol. 228.
3 There is a copy of this office, in English, in S.P. Venice, Vol. xlvii, f. 192.
4 There is a copy of this office, in English and Italian, in S.P. Venice, Vol, xlvii, ff. 198 et seqq.
5 There is a copy of this office, in English and Italian, in S.P. Venice, Vol. xlvii, ff, 194 et seqq.
6 The fight recorded in No. 266 at page 240, above.
7 A French squadron under M. de Martel had been blockading Tunis since April. After the French had stopped a ship named the Tunisian from unloading at the Goletta, Allen sent to remonstrate, and after some negotiation it was conceded that for the future no English ship should be denied to enter and land their goods. London Gazette, July 28–Aug. 1. Hist. MSS. Comm. Dartmouth MSS. Vol. i, pp. 18–9.
8 “The king's galley which is a building at Pisa goes on as slowly as that at Genoa. They find by experience that this new mode of fine, light sailing frigates ruins all galleys both in fight and flight, in so much as many grave sober men here admire what his Majesty means by pretending to set up some galleys at Tangier.” Dodington to Williamson on 6 June. S.P. Tuscany, Vol. xi. The gentleman employed on this business was Captain Jean Baptiste Duteil. Cal. Treasury Books, Vol. iii, page 875.
9 There is a copy of this office, in English and Italian, in S.P. Venice, Vol. xlvii, ff. 212 et seqq.
10 A reply was sent on 21 Feb., 1665, promising that the suit should be despatched promptly. Vol. xxxiv of this Calendar, page 80.
11 There is a copy of this memorial, in English and Italian in S.P. Venice, Vol. xlvii, ff. 216 et seqq.
12 The text of this Memorial, in English and Italian, is in S.P. Venice, Vol. xlvii, ff. 220 et seqq.
13 Given in Vol. xxiv of this Calendar, pp. 61–2.
14 Constantin Ignace de la Tour fourth son of Frederick Maurice, duke of Bouillon was known as the chevalier de Bouillon; but perhaps his elder brother the cardinal is intended.
15 The text of this answer with a translation is in S.P. Venice, Vol. xlvii, ff. 241 et seqq.