Philip III, King of Spain, letter to the Duke of Medina Sidonia, 1608 July 29.
Philip III, King of Spain, letter to Alonso Pérez de Guzmán, Duke of Medina Sidonia, dated July 29, 1608. The King writes to request information concerning the English settlements in Virginia. Specifically, he wishes to learn the locations, ports and sailing conditions which prevail there. The Duke, as Captain General of the Ocean Sea was expected to obtain this information from his subordinates in the treasure fleets.
The letter was accomplished in manuscript by Andres de Prada, and signed by the King. A hole in the paper shows where the King's seal was attached.
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[Translation]of State, my Captain General of the Ocean Sea and of the
Coast of Andalucia:
By various avenues He has been advised
that the English are attempting to procure a foothold on
the Island of Virginia, with the end of sallying
forth from there to commit piracy. As it is convenient to
have an understanding with detailed information about
that island and to know about its exact location, when
it was discovered and by whom, what port it has, and
what its potentials are, and to where one can sail from it
using the prevailing winds, and all the rest one can know
of that place; therefore you will obtain all of the above
information from those people who have such knowledge
and then communicate it to me as soon as possible.
Done at Lerma, 29 July 1608
I the King
Andres de Prada