Pedro • Link
More on Mello.
(Summary from Portuguese writers Rau and Casimiro.)
Francisco de Mello was General of the Artillery when he was persuaded by D. Luisa (Catherine
The match between Charles and Catherine took ages to arrange:
This wikipedia page is well referenced, so I give it more credence than most. (As usual, edited):
From an early age Catherine was looked upon as a way to establish friendly relations between Portugal and England. Not content with the commercial treaty of 1642, her father, King Jaoa IV, proposed in 1645 that Catherine should become the wife of Prince Charles (Quadro Elementar, xvii. 54; cf. Charles I's Works, i. 247, ed. 1649).
The idea came to nothing.
When the Restoration seemed likely, the Portuguese ambassador Dom Francisco de Mello asked Gen. Monck about renewing the project (ib. xvii. 221; EACHARD, History of England, p. 81; KENNET, Register and Chronicle, p. 394).
Charles II's return in May 1660 was immediately followed by a formal proposal of the alliance. The terms were tempting: Tangiers, at the mouth of the Mediterranean; Bombay, with full trading privileges in the Indies; religious and commercial freedom for English subjects in Portugal, and the vast portion of 2,000,000 of crusados (about 300,000l.) Providing protection from Spain and Holland, and the defined liberty of Catholic worship for Catherine were small concessions for the English.
In a secret council at the Chancellor's house, Charles II agreed to proceed.
In the autumn, 1660 a confident de Mello returned to Portugal for instructions. 'A good peace with England was regarded as the only thing under heaven to keep Portugal from despair and ruin' (Maynard to Nicholas, in LISTER'S Life of Clarendon, vol. iii., Appendix, No. lviii.)
In February, de Mello returned to England to negotiate the match, with the title of Conde da Ponte.
On reaching London he found things had changed. Spanish and Dutch influence had been exercised to stop the match. George Digby, 2nd Earl of Bristol was looking for an alliance acceptable to Spain as well as Charles II.
The Spanish ambassador declared that Catherine, besides being no beauty, was incapable of bearing children (Quadro Elementar, xvii. 152; cf. KENNET, p. 698, for the similar report of the English merchants at Lisbon). He offered an equal portion to ANY princess approved by Spain that Charles might choose. Protestants were amused by the envoy of the Catholic king arguing a Protestant king should wed a Protestant bride. (D'ABLANCOURT, Mémoires, p. 73 sq.)
The adoption of the match by the French court saved the Portuguese from despair.
In November 1660 the Queen Mother came to London to win Charles II over.
In March 1661 Louis XIV sent M. de Bastide to England on a secret mission to press for the match.
Finally, on 8 May, 1661 Charles II and Chancellor Clarendon announced to parliament that the marriage negotiations had been completed. The news was favorably received by all (Calendar of State Papers, Dom. 1660-1, pp. 586, 595).
On 23 June, 1661 the marriage treaty was signed (it is given in LA CLEDE, Histoire de Portugal, ii. 711).
The news of Catherine's betrothal spread joy in Portugal. English merchants declared it the 'most beneficiallest trade that ever our nation was engaged in' (Maynard to Nicholas, in LISTER, App. No. lviii.)
Portuguese traders were pleased by the protection of their property from the Dutch navy, and the expected invasion from Spain was no longer feared.
In July 1661 the Conde da Ponte arrived back in Lisbon, bearing letters from Charles II to Catherine and her mother (MISS STRICKLAND gives translations of these, Queens of England, v. 495).
The Earl of Sandwich was appointed extraordinary ambassador to Portugal, and at once set sail for Lisbon.
Nearly a year later Catherine set sail (Algerian pirates had to be chastised, Tangiers occupied, and the queen's portion shipped -- and when Sandwich was ready in the spring of 1662, a dispute arose about the payment). (Sandwich to Clarendon, in LISTER, iii. App. No. xciv.)
On 13-23 April, 1662 festivities began to celebrate Catherine's departure. The pope refused to recognize Portugal's independence, so it was politic to omit the proxy marriage ceremony (LISTER, iii. App. No. ccxxxviii.; EACHARD, p. 801, is wrong), although Catherine was already called the queen of England in Lisbon.
Now I'm having second thoughts on that, too ... it's true Bristol was the Ambassador to Spain, and he opposed the match as it was part of Frances' efforts to deprive Spain of allies. But Spain also had a very colorful Ambassador in London:
According to several sources, including Clarendon: After the marriage treaty was signed on 23 June, 1661 the only person to excite any opposition was the Spanish Ambassador, Carlos, Baron de Vatteville, who tried to stir up excitement by distributing papers, stating alarming evils to England likely to occur from a popish Queen. He was caught in the act of flinging papers out of a window to the soldiery and the populace. Charles II ignored his pleas for pardon, and hurried him out of the Kingdom. https://www.pepysdiary.com/encycl…
So the Spanish Ambassador could be either of them. I think I'm going to favor de Vatteville AKA de Watteville AKA de Batteville.
Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.