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The Ambassador of the Estates of Catalonia. Sent by Dom Joseph de Marguerite. To the Regent the Queen Mother, touching the affairs of that Province. And the general and particular peace. (1649)


Madame, The interests of my homeland and my honor oblige me, in addition to my duty and my charge, to sending you that special Ambassador, in order to assure you of the inviolable faith of my fellow Catalans, and your most obedient subjects, and to tell you of the present state of affaires in that Province, the news which we received of the King so far away in his good city of Paris, and the feelings of his People on that just subject, caused in us much sadness and displeasure and was a subject of joy and rejoicing to our Enemies, and principally to those who are in Lerida who celebrated for three days and three nights with big fires and fired their cannon, and drank an infinite number of healths to your Cardinal Mazarin. The spies and confederates of Spain, to make use of the occasion, spread many pamphlets in many parts of the Province as well as in Barcelona and Perpignan, which contained these Articles.

Article 1.

That the King of Spain pardons all the crimes committed, including all the atrocities and grave offenses, by all the subjects of Catalonia who will leave the party of France in order to return to his obedience.

Article 2.

That the Catalans will enjoy the same privileges and franchises which their Ancestors enjoyed in the time of [Recarede?] and Alfonso Kings of Aragon and Catalonia, so much so that they will be free of all taxes, charges, imposts and subsidies, reserving the annual gift.

Article 3.

That the Nobility of that Country will never be subject to the bench or back bench, that when the French will take up arms against the homeland, to whom they will be subjects for three months, on the condition that each Knight will receive a thousand rich stones from the Spanish Treasury.

Article 4.

That all Church and Justice officials will be maintained in their charges and dignities according to their ancient Privileges, and that they will never be obliged to support soldiers unless it is necessary to fight the Infidels.

Article 5.

That the Catholic King will distribute thirty millions by Commissioners deputized and chosed by the Estates of that Province, which sum will be distributed according to Geometric and Arithmatical proportion, having consideration for the most indisposed houses.

Article 6.

That those who kill Dom Joseph de Marguerite, Governor of Barcelona and that of Perpignan, will have for each of them 50,000 pistolles. The contents of these articles make a strong impression in the Spirits of the Populace, and the same in many of standing, that the people are at the point of revolt in many places: so much so that I am convening the Assembly of the Nobility in Barcelona and then I sent letters to the Priors, Canons, and Curates of the Parishes, for prayers to exhort the people stay faithful to the Crown of France, and to never given an faith to the words of our enemies, who will certainly hold their promises in appearance but not in effect, the diligence that I brought to restore the Spirits of the People was not useless, I came to the end of my design, have made it clearly known to the most visibly intimidated, that we could never fall to ruin but by a revolt, now we dread another cost, the reason being, That the Spaniard set an army on campaign by land, of ten thousand foot, and four thousand horse, who are near Sarragosse, having at sea eight Galleys, 14 Vessels, & 16 Galliasses, who are on the current of Tortone, which is what obliged me to write to Your Majesty, to convince you to send men and money, in order to be able to hurry to keep th eenemy from making any progress on that land, the threats of putting us to fire and blood, they so surprise your poor subjects of that land that it would need another [Jeremiah?] in order to describe their Lamentations, and what increases their pain and gives us more reason to fear is the news that we hear everyday of the disunion of the Princes and the evil intelligence of what transpires between Cardinal Mazarin and your Parisian Bourgeoisie.

For many great reasons, Your Majesty is obliged to give leave to that Minister of State, I see that he has the wisdom of Cato, the valor of Pompei, the drive of Hannibal, the fortune of Scipio, and that he possesses all other qualities of great Personnages of Italy: because his humor is Italian, it is impossible that he could get along with the French, whose interests you should prefer . . . if you consider that the valor of your Marshalls of France consume themselves in stead of shining next to the fire of his ambition, that the glory of the Princes are obscured by the overmighty power of his vanity, that the greatest dignities of the Kingdome lose their luster by the sole demand that he is declared Duke and Father of France, and that the authority of the King is diminished by increase of his vainglory, without a doubt Your Majesty will acquiesce to the just demand of your people, who have no less aversion to Italians than us, to the grief of Cardinal Mazarin, his brother, no sooner arrived in Catalonia in order to be our Viceroy, than the Children, Men, and Women began to contemplate his loss. That is what obliges the King to force him into retirement.

The French have a similar animosity against your Minister, your prudence, in order to prevent the evils which may arise, should persuade him and oblige him for the greater good to leave the Empire, and thus your August Parlemen and your People will be content, the passages will be open, the negotiations free, the King will return to Paris, and then you will create a general peace, which we desire with the same ambition as we wish to live under the law of your Crown. Those just grounds are the cause that we have sent this Ambassador, in order to supplicate and to beg in the name of your subjects of your Province, to always desire to maintaine our interests and to never return us to the domination of Spain, the law of peoples and the civil law will force your Majesty to condescend to our equitable desire, as well as your singular kindness . . . . Since the reign of the White Queen, the Catalans were born subjects to the King of France, so we never did wrong to the King of Spain, when we abandoned the yoke of his servitude to reunite to your Empire . . . we always will remain loyal subjects; and also we ask of your Majesty in recompense for our troubles, the exit of Mazarin from France.

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