Spain: October 1524

Pages 394-398

Calendar of State Papers, Spain: Further Supplement To Volumes 1 and 2, Documents From Archives in Vienna. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1947.

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October 1524

Oct. 3.
H. H. u. St. A. Belgien DD Abt. B. f. 8.
Charles V to Richard Pace.
We have received your letter of September 14th, and are grateful for the good-will shown therein, but we must tell you that you are very badly informed. You say that we have furnished only 34,000 ducats for our army. The contrary is notorious. The duke of Bourbon and all his captains know that we have furnished 200,000 crowns. Even though the Neapolitan gens d'armes have not arrived as soon as they should, the infantry have been in the field since the beginning, and were not paid for July and August with so small a sum. You know yourself that they were at Saint-Laurens by July 1st, and the English money which was to pay for the month of September, was only delivered at Aix. We are now preparing fresh supplies of men and money for our army, as Bourbon will tell you, and you may believe that there will be no failure which we can prevent.
We do not doubt that you will continue to solicit the payment of the English contribution, or their invasion of France according to the treaties. Continue to write to us often ; we shall always take your advice in good part, being sure of your affection for which we hope to show our gratitude.
Valladolid, 3 October, 1524.
Draft. French.
Oct. 7.
H. H. u. St. A. England f. 1.
Louis De Praet to Margaret Of Savoy.
There has been no further news since I last wrote you, except that the Milanese and papal ambassadors have heard from Rome that the archbishop of Capua is now in Bourbon's camp. He is to go from there to King Francis, then to Spain, and then here, where he is expected before the end of this month.
I have received yours of September 20th, which requires no particular reply.
London, Oct. 6, 1524.
Since writing the above a courier has come from Spain. He will give you this letter and also letters from the emperor and an oral report.
7 Oct.
Signed, Loys de Praet. French.
Oct. 20.
H. H. u. St. A. England, f. 2.
Charles V to Louis De Praet.
We were about to write to you because we had had no news from you for some time, although Môqueron had brought us letters from Madame saying that an English invasion had been agreed upon, when we received your letters dated August 30th, brought by Rogier de la Verrière who had been delayed by lack of a favourable wind. All things considered, you have done very well in arranging for the English invasion of France, and in praising Wolsey for his good-will toward this measure.
In order that nothing shall be lacking on our part, or Madame's, we have already made the following arrangements. The 50,000 ducats will be paid, within a short time, to the army of Provence ; we have already sent them 25,000 ducats in ready money, and another 25,000 will go forward shortly, making 100,000. We have ordered Lannoy to forward them, also, the 50,000 given us by Naples, and have therefore provided 400,000 ducats altogether, as will be found no less than true, whatever may be said to the contrary. Otherwise our army could hardly have sustained itself there since July first, since we understand that the king of England has furnished only 100,000 crowns. Therefore, ask him at once to furnish the remainder of an equal contribution, counting from the first of July. You have written that the English were going to send another hundred thousand ducats, but there has been no news of them. We have written to our viceroy of Naples, sending him full powers to raise money in the kingdom of Naples by the sale of annuities or other expedients, so that there may be no lack of money, however long the army remains in France. So much for financial arrangements.
As to reinforcements, we had engaged ships to send the German troops here to Provence, but their embarkation was so long delayed we had to dismiss the ships. However, these Germans, with a large number of men-at-arms, have now invaded Languedoc, and captured the town of Saint-Pol and several villages and castles. We have determined to prepare ships to transport the Germans and four thousand fresh Spanish troops. While these preparations are being made, the Germans will continue to make war in Languedoc. If they can join Bourbon by that route, they will do so ; otherwise they will be transported by sea within a month. Since we are providing adequate funds and reinforcements to the army of Provence, you may, without hesitation, ask the English either to make an equal contribution in money, or to enter France with an army.
In the matter of the negotiations for peace or truce, you have acted very wisely. If Wolsey presses you to hear Jehan Jockin's proposals, you may say that you have no instructions from us to act in such a matter, since we have placed everything in the pope's hands, according to our common agreement to comply with Capua's request. When you find Wolsey in a good humour ask him, in a friendly fashion, to dismiss Jehan Jockin, according to the terms of the treaty of Windsor, for his long stay in England has brought, and will bring, damage to the common cause throughout Christendom more than Wolsey thinks ; there is no talk of anything else, and a thousand suspicions are current among our friends and our enemies. You may tell Wolsey we have credible information that King Francis feels certain of doing as he likes with Wolsey, and is merely amusing him now with words, in order to take advantage of him. He would not, for instance, have gone into Provence with all his power unless he had been sure the English would not attack him. We do not believe this, but such rumours give heart to the enemy. You may also assure Wolsey that we would not have kept a Frenchman so long, or so openly, at our court, and that, whatever offers had been made us, we would not have heard them without the advice and consent of the king and the cardinal.
As soon as Capua comes here we shall advise you of what he brings, and of what answer we make him. For the sake of our health we are moving to a warmer place, Toledo, which is thirty leagues from here, and no farther from the frontier.
Tordesillas, 16 October, 1524.
P. S.—We are sending you a letter we have just received from our brother, the archduke. Show it to Wolsey and discover whether he will contribute to the enterprise mentioned.
Jacomo Pistoia, the courier, has just brought your letters of September 28th. We are well aware of the English intentions of which you warn us, but it behoves us to show no suspicion, that they may do no worse. We have heard the English ambassador, and given him a reply in writing, copies enclosed. You will conduct yourself accordingly. This courier is sent in such haste that we have no time to write to Madame ; give her news of us.
You may tell Wolsey that, by the end of November, he shall have letters of exchange in payment of his pension. You also, shall have what is due you at that time. The Sieur de Bredem tells us that our couriers are always obliged to wait from eight to fifteen days in England at the cardinal's pleasure. You may tell the cardinal we have ordered you not to delay the couriers more than four or five days. Carry out this order, and write us promptly.
If anything more is said about the "Great Enterprise," tell Wolsey we completely approve of his plan that each of us shall make a large separate army, meanwhile supporting Bourbon's army at common expense. We wish to know his mind more fully on this subject, and hope he will send powers to the English ambassador to treat about it here.
Given as above, 20 October, 1524.
Signed, Charles ; countersigned, Lalamand. Draft. French. pp. 6.
Oct. 20.
H. H. u. St. A. England, f. 1
Louis De Praet to Margaret Of Savoy.
A week ago I received your letters of Sept. 30th and Oct. 6th, which I communicated to Wolsey. As to the rumour which you hear Pace has spread throughout Italy, Wolsey says the king and he have never written any such thing to Pace, and that he has acted without instructions. Of the statement by the English ambassador at Rome that Henry wished a truce, but not a peace, Wolsey said his ambassador was mistaken, since his instructions were contrary to this, as I believe to be true. It is possible your informant was mistaken, for in addition to what Wolsey has always told me, you may see by the enclosed copy what the viceroy has just written on the subject.
When I received your second letter, I had just heard from the emperor, and I went at once to Hampton Court to communicate the contents of my dispatches to Wolsey and to learn what he had heard from Pace. He told me he had letters from Pace dated September 19th and 21st, saying there was still hope of taking Marseilles, but that whatever happened, it had been unanimously decided to await the approach of King Francis and to give him battle, no matter how powerful he might be. If Marseilles did not yield in ten or twelve days, it had been decided to go to seek the French king and to offer battle. In view of this hopeful news, we spoke for some time of arrangements for maintaining Bourbon's army throughout the winter, but Wolsey finally refused to decide anything without further consideration and consultation with Henry, who did not return to town until yesterday evening.
To-day I received your letters of October 13th, and Richard Boulanger arrived from Spain. You will learn the news there from him. To-morrow I go to see Wolsey and shall let you know at once what is decided, though I am not very hopeful. Jehan Jockin is said to have certain news that Bourbon has raised the siege of Marseilles, and is retreating toward Italy. If this be true, all our recent negotiations here have been in vain.
London, 20 October, 1524.
Signed, Loys de Praet. French. pp. 2.
Oct. 21.
H. H. u. St. A. England, f. 1.
Louis De Praet to Margaret Of Savoy.
Richard expected to leave for Flanders this morning, but found the barge from Gravesend had already departed, and was obliged to wait until this evening. Meanwhile I went to Wolsey and communicated to him the contents of the letters which Richard brought from the emperor, and yours of the 13th. He said that, in view of the rumour that Bourbon's army was in retreat, nothing could be decided about an English invasion of France until we had more definite news. He spoke very hopefully and cheerfully, but I am disturbed by the lack of news from Italy.
Wolsey told me that he had heard from the captain of Guines that M. de Liques [Licques?] was captured by the French in a skirmish three days ago, and his company of Spaniards defeated.
London, 21 October, 1524.
Signed, Loys de Praet. French.
Oct. 25.
H. H. u. St. A. England. f. 1.
Louis De Praet to Margaret Of Savoy.
I have received your letters of October 18th and 20th, containing the bad news of Bourbon's retreat from Marseilles. I shall write to the viceroy and to M. de Roeulx, as you ask me to do, but I do not see how they can entertain any suspicions of you as a consequence of what I have formerly written, for it is hardly surprising that I have been unable to assure them about things which were still uncertain, and not fixed by any treaty.
Two weeks ago Wolsey received letters from Bourbon similar in contents to those which you now forward. Therefore, and since everything is now changed by the news of Bourbon's retreat, these letters are now useless. As to the 200,000 crowns which the emperor is said to have furnished Bourbon's army, Wolsey has already told me he had certain information that very little of it was actually made available to the army, since the viceroy used forty thousand for Italian affairs, and thirty thousand was consumed by the cost of exchange.
As soon as I received your letters, I went to Wolsey and gave him the news, at which he seemed much astonished and grieved. He said he had been unwilling to believe Jockin and he found it very strange that he had had no reports from Pace or Russell. He also expressed himself as much astonished that Francis was detaining the archbishop of Capua, and said the pope would have little reason to be pleased with such action. Wolsey showed himself quite willing to consider maintaining Bourbon's army, provided it could hold even a few places in Provence. In that case, he thought, the reputation of the allies would not be quite lost, Francis could be kept in fear, and the army would be in a better position to resume the offensive. I thanked him, and asked for some contribution for the defence of Milan, urging the dangers which might arise from lack of money, and begging him to permit the fifty thousand crowns which he had recently sent to Italy, to be used for this purpose. He completely refused to make such a suggestion to the king, since the Italian princes had behaved so badly towards Bourbon's army, which had taken the field chiefly in their defence. He promised to think of the matter, however, and to speak of it to the king as soon as he had news from Pace. We may still hope, therefore, that matters will take a better turn here, though Jehan Jockin is still about, and sending off couriers daily. I hope to be able to give you more definite news in four or five days.
London, 25 October, 1524.
Signed, Loys de Praet. French. pp. 2.