The cause of the republic was brilliantly advocated by Fra Paolo Sarpi, counsellor of state; the defenders of the papal theory were Cardinals Baronius and Bellarmine.
The Venetian version of the quarrel with the pope was written by Sarpi (subsequently translated into English, London, 1626); see also Cornet, Paolo V.
So far as European politics are concerned, the latter years of the republic are made memorable by one important event: the resistance which Venice, under the guidance of Fra Paolo Sarpi, offered to the growing claims of the Curia Romana, advanced by Pope Paul V.
Sarpi, in urging Casaubon to write against Baronius, warns him never to charge or suspect him of bad faith, for no one who knew him could accuse him of disloyalty to truth.
Rome was successful in some minor negotiations with Savoy, Genoa, Tuscany and Naples; but Venice, under the leadership of Paolo Sarpi, proved unbending under ban and interdict: the state defiantly upheld its sovereign rights, kept most of the clergy at their posts, and expelled the recalcitrant Jesuits.
See Minuccio Minucci, Historia degli Uscochi (Venice, 1603); enlarged by P. Sarpi, and translated into French as a supplement to Amelot de la Houssaye's Histoire du gouvernement de Venise (Amsterdam, 1705).
Henry is said, on authority which has not been traced farther back than Paolo Sarpi, to have been destined for the church; but the story is probably a mere surmise from his theological accomplishments, and from his earliest years high secular posts such as the viceroyalty of Ireland were conferred upon the child.
Nevertheless, a department had been added to the intellectual empire of mankind, in which fellow-workers, like Guicciardini at Florence, and subsequently Sarpi at Venice, were not slow to follow the path traced by Machiavelli.
He had previously visited Italy, and made the acquaintance of Paolo Sarpi, whom he endeavoured unsuccessfully to engage in a reformation movement.
The post of consulting lawyer to the republic, in which he might have continued the special work of Fra Paolo Sarpi, was offered to him, as well as that of professor of public law in Padua; but he declined both offers.