Spain: June 1545, 21-30

Pages 139-152

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 8, 1545-1546. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1904.

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June 1545, 21–30

21 June. Simancas E. Castilla.72. 74. Dr. Molon to the Emperor.
The Inquisitor General, the Cardinal of Toledo and the Council have appointed the writer Inquisitor at Seville. With great difficulty he accepted the post for the service of God and the Emperor. He arrived in Seville at the beginning of the year and found the Inquisition very inert. God allowed him to discover the offences which were being committed against his Divine Majesty in this province; and so as early as was possible, which was to-day, there was an auto de fé in which many heretics, Jews and some Lutherans, etc., were led out, as is set forth in the statement enclosed. God grant, in His divine mercy, that this may redound to His glory, and the exaltation of the faith. Commends his services in this for the Emperor's approval. Humble Vassal and Chaplain,
Castle of Triana, 21 June, 1545.
Doctor J. Molon.
The Statement enclosed contains the names of two men only as having continued obstinate, Francisco de Morales of Toledo, a new Christian of Jewish race, and Francisco de la Plata, a silversmith convert of Seville. Of those reconciled there are 36 men, of whom 17 are Moriscos, and the rest new Christians, Lutherans, Jews and others unspecified. Among them there are four Flemings, and one English Lutheran called “ Robert.” In addition to these there are 14 women, seven of whom are Moriscas; and a supplementary list of two women and one man “ penanced with the habit,” and eight men, of whom one is a Portuguese friar, “ penanced without the habit.” There is a transcript of this paper in the B.M., Add. 28594.
21 June. Vienna Imp. Arch. 75. Henry Garbrand to Jehan Lobel and Gerard de Has.
I beg to inform you that the Secretary here (Paget) has received letters from the English Commissioners at Bourbourg respecting the presentation of your claim for the goods and wine taken at Plymouth in William de Resesta's ship. I have to advise you that the said Secretary has indemnified me fully for the merchandise in question, on behalf of you, Anthony Rouze, and all other interested parties, from whom I held ample powers for the purpose. You will therefore withdraw your claims from the deputies, in order that they may see that you are satisfied with what I have done here. I was very much ashamed when I saw the letter making the claim on your behalf, although I had on my passage through Bourbourg begged Thomas Gamay not to make any such claim, as I had settled the matter here.
Greenwich, 21 June, 1545.
Addressed to Jehan de Lobel and Gerard de Has, winemerchants, Lille, Flanders.
Attached to the above is a letter of the same date from the writer at Greenwich to Thomas Gamay at Bourbourg, asking him for the reasons stated above to withdraw the claims referred to.
23 June. Vienna Imp. Arch. Hop. Cor. 76. Henry VIII. to the Emperor. (fn. 1)
We doubt not that by this time you will have been informed of the great preparations which the French have made by sea and by land for the purpose of invading our realms, and that the King of France has enlisted a large number of your Majesty's subjects with that object, and for the purpose of avenging himself, if possible, for the attack we as your ally made upon him. In accordance with the terms of our alliance we consider it necessary to inform you of these warlike preparations, and to request you forthwith to prepare the aid stipulated in case of invasion of the dominions of either of us by a third power, in order that immediately you are informed from us by our ambassador and Councillor Dr. Wotton that such invasion of our realm has taken place, you may send the assistance stipulated in the treaty; as we for our part have done towards you. You will, thereby, not only do us great pleasure, but will also demonstrate strongly the firmness of your friendship.
Dartford, 23 June, 1545.
25 June. Vienna Imp Arch 77. Chapuys to the Emperor.
Whilst I was in conference this morning with the English deputies I received your Majesty's letters of the 19th instant with enclosures, etc.; and after I had finished my other business with the deputies, I conveyed to them as a final tit-bit the contents of the letters in question, and those written by your Majesty to your ambassador in England. I set forth at length the greater part of the injuries, outrages and oppressions, committed on your Majesty's subjects since the agreement made in Brussels with Secretary Paget, as well as the seizure, shortly before the date of the agreement, of two ships which have not yet been restored. I added unofficially, that in my opinion, notwithstanding your Majesty's singular affection for their King, and the whole English nation, unless some remedy was found for such intolerable insolence, loss and injury, as were constantly inflicted upon your Majesty's subjects, you would be compelled to take steps to prevent your dominions from being utterly ruined. Your Majesty's peoples, I said, mainly depended upon their commerce and merchandise, and especially the mariners, of whom there were vast numbers, both in Spain and in these parts, living solely by seafaring. The deputies were astonished to hear that since their departure from England, such things had been going on, and also that the merchandise detained had not been restored to the owners against security: and they themselves affirmed that your Majesty's subjects ought not even to be burdened by having to find security, unless there was a strong presumptive indication that the property seized belonged to Frenchmen.
They had already three or four days ago written at my request to England about it, but they promised to write urgently again, and to do their best in the matter. They excused the delay that had taken place in remedying the evils, by saying that nearly all the Lords of the Council are absent from Court in various parts of the country, organising the defence, whilst the few who remained were so overwhelmed with business connected with the war, that they had no time to attend to anything else.
The deputies then went on to say, that your Majesty had not nearly so much cause for resentment for the matters referred to above, as their King had for the seizures effected in Spain of the property of Englishmen, which property had not yet been released. They complained even more bitterly that reprisals against Englishmen had been authorised (in Spain) without any enquiry being made into the cases, although they (the English) had not refused to do justice or to punish the man whose acts had given rise to the grievance. To this I replied that it was true that they had promised several times to punish the offender—one Renegat—and to make him give restitution, but it all ended in words, for Renegat had been welcomed at Court, and had swaggered about everywhere.
I seized an opportunity for saying that their people were quite in a hurry to withdraw from the Flanders trade. They replied that it was not to be wondered at, as the King had raised a fleet of fully three hundred sail, and it was probable that all the English ships, or at least all the English seamen, had gone for the King's service; so that it was impossible that the merchants could carry on their maritime trade as usual. The deputies (one of whom is the Courtmaster Danvers) swore that they knew of no Englishman who had withdrawn from Flanders any merchandise, either by land or sea; although the Bishop of Westminster let slip twice over that it was quite true that their merchants were very doubtful whether some rupture might not take place between their King and your Majesty, seeing what was being done in Spain against them.
When I had heard this excuse and assertion, I thought well to write to the Chancellor of Brabant that he should keep in suspense the arrest, about which your Majesty recently wrote to him, especially in view of the hope given by these deputies that your Majesty's subjects shall be indemnified; and I tell him (the Chancellor) that unless he sees imminent danger of the withdrawal of English property, it will be better to temporise and take no step, until we have news from England, or your Majesty orders otherwise. I have advised the ambassador in England of my colloquy with these Englishmen.
Bourbourg, 25 June, 1545.
25 June. Vienna Imp. Arch. 78. Chapuys to the Chancellor of Brabant.
I received this morning letters from the Emperor, dated 9th instant with copy of his Majesty's last letter to you, respecting the enquiry into, and embargo of English goods. His Majesty orders you to explain that he has effected the arrest for the purpose of indemnifying certain Spaniards for the seizure of three ships belonging to them in England. The English deputies here for the arbitration conference give me some hope that these ships may be restored; and although I doubt not that your wisdom and discretion would lead you in any case to consider maturely before you acted in a matter of so much importance, I have thought well to write to you, to say that, unless there is imminent danger in so doing, it would be better to temporise and avoid decisive action, until his Majesty has news from England as to the course there adopted respecting the restitution. I am writing to this effect to his Majesty from whom you may hear before you have finished your enquiries.
Bourbourg, 25 June, 1545.
25 June. Vienna Imp. Arch 79. Chapuys to de Granvelle.
Your lordship will see by my letters to his Majesty all that I have to say on the points respecting which he wrote to me; and I write this short note only to express my astonishment that in his Majesty's letter to the Queen (Dowager) I should be quoted as the authority for the news that the English were secretly withdrawing their property from Antwerp. This must be a blunder of my man, whom I told to write the intelligence that trade with Spain had been prohibited in England; and that I heard that the commerce of the English with Flanders was daily diminishing. Although Jehan de Quintana Done explicitly assured me that he had seen between Gravelines and Bruges over twenty wagon loads of English merchandise coming from Antwerp, yet as the author of this news was somewhat open to suspicion, by reason of his interest in the matter, I had no intention of causing it to be conveyed to his Majesty. I now enclose copy of a letter I have written to the Chancellor of Brabant, and beg you to overlook my simplicity, and fault if such there be, and attribute the latter to my ardent desire to serve his Majesty. I also enclose extract from letters written yesterday by M. de Roeulx to the Chancellor of the order. If the intelligence contained therein be true, his Majesty may avoid for this year, at least, having to grant the aid requested by the English. Still I am doubtful whether the news be not mere hearsay, although there is nothing unlikely in it; and I have held for a long time past that the French will repent of having brought their galleys up here. Even if there was no danger from enemies or pestilence, they can be of no service to them here, and as they will have to winter in these climates not a convict will survive the change of air from that of the Levant. The number of the Germans mentioned in the extract (although the French say there are 10,000) do not reach 8,000.
Bourbourg, 25 June, 1545.
Extract of letter from M. de Roeulx (fn. 2) referred to in the above:—The said man informed him that they (i.e., the French) are in great fear lest the Emperor should return with the English. If he does so, France will be ruined, as the country was never in such poverty as at present. The Germans were in Champagne unpaid, and committing all sorts of disorder. They had resolved to march to Noyon, and not to leave there until they were paid in full. There is no means of raising the money to pay them, and even if they (i.e., the French) could succeed in doing so, it would be still impossible for them to march against Boulogne for want of victuals. Their own (French) cavalry and infantry are unpaid, the nobility is impoverished and the people ruined, at which they are much surprised. In revictualling Ardres they have only done harm to the Emperor, as they have wasted all the wheat on the way from the river Falkenberg as far as Tournchen and they are constantly committing outrages in the neighbourhood. The said deponent was at Crotoy where he saw a galley entirely abandoned by its crew, most of the slaves having died of the plague. The captains of the French galleys are half distracted in the fear that a similar fate may befall their vessels; besides which they do not see a chance of their galleys being able to do anything.
25 June. Vienna Imp. Arch. 80. Chapuys to de Granvelle.
This morning the English deputies again brought up the question of the reprisals authorised in Spain; and at my request they showed me the order given in the name of the Prince (i.e., the Regent Philip) which I almost forced them to admit was not really a decree for reprisals, since it only ordered the seizure of English goods to the value of Renegat's depredations in Spain. I told them openly before the Chancellor of the Order and my other colleagues, that it seemed to me that they had no great reason to make so much ado about this seizure. It might be said, indeed, that they ought to be ashamed to press the point as they were doing, for it seemed to infer that they were willing to give greater license to Renegat than to the Prince; since the former, a mere private individual, had commenced these reprisals (if such they could be called) and yet they would not suffer his Serenity by just means to obtain indemnity for them in a much more modest fashion than Renegat had acted. The latter, moreover, as the Prince had probably heard, had been welcomed in England, and he still retained the property of which he piratically plundered Spaniards. In view of this, and the tardiness with which the restitution of the property previously seized from Spaniards was being conducted, naturally his Highness, as a good prince, could not overlook the injury inflicted by Renegat, or avoid taking due steps for obtaining an indemnity. The deputies, after some altercation, and severely blaming Renegat, who they said was worthy of punishment, showed annoyance at having brought the matter forward, and appeared more satisfied about it than they had previously been.
Bourbourg, 25 June, 1545.
29 June. Vienna Imp. Arch. 81. Chapuys to the Emperor.
After dinner to-day the Bishop of Westminster and Secretary Petre came to visit me, and in the course of conversation I took an opportunity to repeat some discourse which I had addressed to them on a previous occasion, respecting the matter of this arbitration conference. I pointed out to them how necessary it was that redress should be given to your Majesty's subjects for the loss and injury they had suffered. They (Thirlby and Petre) confirmed the hope, which they had previously held out to me, and in proof of what they said they handed me two letters, stating that a quantity of vine belonging to some merchants of Lille had been restored at their intercession. (fn. 3) This is a good beginning, as is also the release, against security, of a ship belonging to Quintana de Done, a merchant of Burgos; and the same owner had hopes that his principal vessel, about which your Majesty wrote to the ambassador, might be released on similar conditions. There seems, therefore, a chance of matters being remedied without resorting to the counter-arrest, or other unpleasant measures. The principal difficulty lies with the three ships belonging to Burgos merchants seized before the war; as they, the English, thought that they were quit of responsibility in that case, because they got the merchants themselves to testify that they had been indemnified out of the English goods seized at Rouen. Now, however, that we have obtained authentic documents from Rouen, we find that such is not the case, the goods there having been adjudged to other persons holding letters of marque. This greatly confuses and surprises them. After some conversation, they (i.e., Thirlby and Petre) gave me to understand that Secretary Paget had written to them saying that he had laid before the King, the conversation I had recently had with them; and that his Majesty had taken it all in good part. He had also thanked me for my desire to maintain and strengthen the friendship existing, and to serve him. Paget had also told them that he was much surprised that your Majesty's ambassador had not broached any conversation about peace or a truce between England and France; since I had said that your Majesty denied nothing better, and that you had instructed me to adopt every means to forward that object. Doubtless, they said, your Majesty had given similar instructions to the ambsssador, and that I had done the same. I told them that the ambassador had refrained from opening the subject, in consequence of his not having been expressly ordered to do so, but only to watch and advise if any opportunity presented itself. In my opinion, your Majesty had deferred, and was still deferring, the bringing forward of the matter, until you saw a favourable opportunity, and some prospect of bringing it to a good issue to the contentment of the parties concerned. Otherwise, I said, your Majesty's intervention would only result in a slight to your own dignity. Besides, I continued, affairs were not yet in a very critical position; and they (the English) might be sure that your Majesty had not neglected to instruct your ministers in France to watch for a chance of influencing the King of France. But as your Majesty had found there no serious basis for negotiation, you had decided to let matters mature somewhat, until there appeared to be a fair opportunity. This opportunity I said, in my opinion, was at present, and it should be taken advantage of in order that the evils and uncertain result of a battle might be avoided; and I prayed them to let me know if they thought that anything could be done to forward the matter; or if, on the contrary, they thought it too late now to speak of it. They replied that it was not at all too late; and, as I had remarked that this was the best season to bring about a settlement, I ought to forward the matter with your Majesty. With regard to the other means I had spoken of, they said that their wit did not reach so far as to understand them; and I knew the temper of their master as well as they did. I answered that recently, before my departure from England, the Chancellor and the Duke of Suffolk had conjured me to give them my opinion; and I had suggested that it (Boulogne ?) might be placed in the keeping of a third party, at the joint expense of France and England. They (i.e., Wriothesley and Suffolk) had rejected this, and had only expressed curiosity as to who the third party could be. I had not thought proper to mention your Majesty, as I did not know whether you would approve of the suggestion; but I myself was still of the same opinion. They (Thirlby and Petre) gave me no reply; on the contrary, the secretary (Petre) changed the conversation, with the excuse that he must not forget to tell me that Paget had written that he did not understand my purpose in bringing forward the statement that the King ought to ratify the Emperor's treaty of peace with France. I replied that, admitting that what had been done was with their King's consent, it was to his advantage to recognise the treaty, because he was one of the principal parties interested in it and because it was necessary in order to avail himself of the reservation in his favour stipulated by the treaty, and of the reference to the Emperor's arbitration of his (Henry's) claims against France. I continued, that he would by this course also shut the mouths of the French, who were trying to persuade your Majesty that you were in no wise bound to the King of England, failing the confirmation by the latter of the treaty of peace. Reverting to the main point, they (Thirlby and Petre) said that, although their master doubted whether the French had done anything; and there was every appearance of his being able to prevail more and more against them, yet he would not refuse any honourable conditions of peace. As for the restitution of Boulogne, however, the King would not consent to have it even mentioned, both on account of the advantage they (the English) look for, through the possession of the place, and as a point of personal honour; as the King thought that he could not surrender it without discredit to his prestige. The world would conclude that he gave it up through fear if he did so.
I said I knew, to some extent, the greatness of heart and power of their King. He was quite puissant enough to defend himself against the French, and yet from the time his predecessors had conquered Calais, I thought that they had had their hands full in holding and guarding the place. It was true, I said, that the former Kings of England were not so powerful as their (Thirlby and Petre's) master, the present King, but at the same time it must be recollected that the old Kings of France could not be compared in strength with the present one. It was unquestionable that the possession of Boulogne would be, as they said, a great advantage to England if it could be held peacefully; but it was to be feared that, if the King of France found that he could not recover the place, he might fortify other places in the neighbourhood, and keep in them a strong force of soldiers, who would prevent the English from making any use of Boulogne and the surrounding country, which would thus prove a costly burden to them and no profit at all. All this, and other discourse to the same end, I placed before them (Thirlby and Petre) by way of conversation; in order to discover something of the King's feeling about the retention of Boulogne: but I made quite clear to them that the talk was confidential; and that I had neither instructions to mention the matter, nor the slightest desire to persuade or dissuade them in the restitution or retention of Boulogne. They thanked me for the confidence I had reposed in them; and I gathered the impression finally from their words and demeanour, that it will be possible to bring the King to surrender Boulogne, if a reasonable compensation be given to him; especially if the request comes from your Majesty; and his vain glory is satisfied by its being represented to him, that your Majesty and Christendom at large will be under a great obligation to him for his condescending to this peace, for the purpose of uniting the Christian Commonwealth and repelling the common enemy. In order to get on to the subject of the King of England's resources, I mentioned to them (Thirlby and Petre) that the French had conceived some hopes from the rumour that the King (of England) was short of money, since he had raised a loan in Antwerp at so high an interest at the very beginning of the war, and before his departure from London, he had compelled the citizens to buy certain revenues of his, the price of which did not exceed 100,000 ducats. I had, I said, heard from several quarters the talk that was going on amongst Frenchmen about it; but for my part I thought the King had quite as good an excuse for borrowing as the French had when they borrowed such vast sums from the Florentines and other merchants at Lyons, and of the Swiss, at the time that your Majesty's election to the Empire was afoot. The French had alleged then that they had not borrowed the money out of poverty, for the treasury of France was inexhaustible, but they had raised the funds at Lyons in order that the Fucars (fn. 4) and other German companies should not get hold of it and use it in your Majesty's interests, and the loans from the Swiss were for the purpose of attaching them to the French interest. They (Thirlby and Petre) admired this clever dexterity on the part of the French, but declined to be drawn into any conversation with regard to their own resources. They changed the subject by begging me to write and exert my influence that the ambassador in England should resume the talk about peace or a truce, in his conversation with the King or Council. They had no doubt in such case, that an opportunity might be found upon which negotiations could be based. They repeated their complaints that the English in Spain had been excluded from the tribunals as heretics; and that even the King, their master, had been vilified there with the same title; which, they said, was not to be tolerated, even in the case of such friends as your Majesty and the King.
As I had heard that information had come from M. de Roeulx that the secretary of Madame d' Etampes had arrived at Boulogne, and that Cardinal Médon (Meudon ?) was also expected there in a few days, I said to them (Thirlby and Petre) that I had hoped they were going to give me some good news, upon which I could have congratulated them, about the personage who had arrived at Boulogne on behalf of the King of France, to treat for peace, and about the other personage who was expected shortly. I said that your Majesty would greatly rejoice at the news. They replied that, on their faith and conscience, they had heard nothing in the world about such a thing; and trusted that it would not hinder your Majesty from taking the matter in hand.
Bourbourg, 29 June, 1545.
Endorsed:—From Chapuys 29 June: Received at Worms the 8th of same month (sic) 1545.
29 June. Paris Arch. Nat. K.1485. 82. St. Mauris to Francisco de los Cobos.
I send you an account of all that has happened here since my last of 15th June from Argentan.
Thirty Flemish mercantile hulks sailing from Rochelle towards Normandy in company with the French fleet, sighted a great fleet of Englishmen coming against them. They (the Flemings ?) fired a signal which at sea indicates friendship. The Flemings then joined the French fleet which was near to them, and together they presented so formidable a front to the English that the latter were forced to retire. The King assures me that the English would have defeated the French if it had not been for these hulks, and in such case the French sea force would have been broken up for this year. The King is delighted with the attitude of these Flemings and has thanked the Emperor for it. Shortly afterwards three French galleys left Rouen to carry victuals to Etaples. Two of them were driven by stress of weather into Dunkirk, and the people of the place supplied them with a little fresh food but not so much as they requested. The other galley went aground and foundered off Boulogne, as did a ship that attempted to help her.
Ten thousand crowns have been melted and mixed with copper and other metal here, and forged into 150,000 crowns which have been delivered to Captain de L'Orge to pay the men-at-arms he takes to Scotland. I obtained possession of one of these base crowns, which I spent. Warn people not to be cheated by them. I hear that the Emperor has already sent a warning to Spain.
It is said that L'Orge has started for Scotland, taking the route by Ireland (fn. 5) after spreading the rumour that he would go through the Straits of Calais, where consequently the English fleet awaited him.
The King has issued an order that all French mariners meeting the subjects of the Emperor at sea are to treat them as friends, and aid them in every way.
The final decision of the King with regard to the conduct of the war with England, is to hold the sea, and thus prevent the victualling of Calais and Boulogne. He will not attempt to land in England but will attack it from Scotland, and he intends to construct two forts on the sea shore from which he may molest Boulogne. (fn. 6) He is going to ship an immense quantity of stones in six vessels, and have them discharged in the mouth of Boulogne harbour so as to obstruct the passage. A design of these two forts is enclosed.
The French, with very few troops have thrown a great quantity of food into Ardres, without any resistance from the English, most of whom had then gone to England.
It is said that Captain Dampierre, Governor of Ardres lost a considerable number of men in a skirmish near Guisnes and 30 men at arms were left on the field. (fn. 7)
Whilst Paulin was yet in Provence the King instructed him to disperse a number of Lutherans in the neighbourhood of Avignon. After some pursuit he dispersed them and executed some of them by burning: but since Paulin's departure the Lutherans have again assembled at the same place. The sect grows in number daily, most of them being women.
In deference to the King (of France) the Emperor has consented to the Scots trading in the Netherlands under safe conduct; but although the King used great pressure, the Emperor refused to include them (the Scots) in the treaty of peace. The King also tried very hard to get the Count de Mirandola (fn. 8) included in the treaty, but the Emperor refused absolutely, and insisted that, come what might, the Count would have to surrender to justice and answer the charge of homicide against him.
The King has consented that Count William (of Furetenberg?) should be free within the city of Paris, upon his giving security for the payment of his ransom, the King giving him a guarantee that he shall be safely conveyed out of the realm, when the Emperor places at ransom the Prince of Roche sur Yonne. With regard to the latter, Don Francisco (d'Este) is being asked to take 15,000 crowns for his ransom.
The King has got from Germany 6,000 lansquenets to serve against the English. He is sending them to Picardy to join 6,000 French infantry and about 4,000 horse, and to go against Boulogne under command of the Dauphin. It is said that the King himself will be there for a few days to see the forts made ready.
The King has sent six learned men to the Council (of Trent). When he knows that the Council is to proceed he will send most of his bishops, and the 12 personages he has assembled at Melun to discuss their action at the Council.
The King has for the present refused to allow the publication of the papal bull, forbidding the imposition or collection of tithes without the Pope's permission. The French say that their King is authorised to levy tithes, by special indult given to his predecessors in return for services performed for the Holy See.
M. Hannebault the Admiral and Marshal of France, has been appointed to command the fleet against the English. Peter Strozzi left Marseilles for the high seas some time since, and it is said that with only his own galley he captured three English ships, carrying goods, munitions and victuals belonging to the English. He was able to do it because the ships were becalmed. Peter Strozzi has been condemned in his cause against the King in the Parliament of Paris for 56,000 crowns, which he says he spent of his own money on the King's service in the last wars in Italy.
Cardinal Ferrara has arrived here and is made much of, as it was owing to his efforts that the Venetians and Genoese lent this King several vessels.
It is believed that when the King has seen the embarcation of his troops on the fleet, he and all his household will proceed to Abbeville with his reserve militia (arriere ban). He will not make use of his gendarmerie, in order, as he says, to relieve his people: but the real reason is that the “arriere ban” will serve him without pay, whereas he would have to pay the gendarmerie, to whom already 15 months' wages are owing.
When the Emperor had arrived at Worms M. de Grignan declared to him that he had been sent by the King (of France) to assure the German princes of the perfect amity which reigned between the King and the Emperor; and to beg them not to decide anything in the Diet to the King's prejudice, and especially in the matter of the Duchy of Bar. (fn. 9) M. de Grignan reports that the Emperor directed M. de Granvelle to ask him whether he was instructed to say anything to the Princes about the re-union of Christendom and to urge them to consent to the Council. He replied that he had no such instructions, but would write to the King about it. The Emperor thought this very strange, and instructed me to express surprise at it here. The reply given to me was that the envoy had been instructed to address the Princes exactly as the Emperor might wish and to assure them that the King of France would, in the matter of the Council, be guided by the Emperor's wishes.
By the Emperor's orders I have urged them to an agreement for the surrender of Hesdin against a reasonable compensation, in accordance with the treaty of peace. They reply that it was arranged that the compensation should be decided by the King of France, and the King assures me that he instructed his representatives at the peace negotiations to break off the treaty, rather than consent to the restoration of Hesdin. (fn. 10) I said that, in effect, the Emperor might consider that the treaty had not been fulfilled unless the town was restored in return for a reasonable compensation: and his Majesty now formally demanded the surrender on those terms.
The King has republished decrees to the effect that all English property found at sea or in the ports, and any ships wholly or partially loaded with English goods, shall be confiscated to the King's use; and also all goods and persons found in the said ships, even though the ships and remainder of the merchandise belong to the subjects of the Emperor or others. The Emperor, however, refuses to allow this, as a violation of the treaty of peace, and the Flemings complain that it amounts to a stoppage of their trade with England altogether.
After much effort I have obtained a suspension of the letters of marque against Portugal for six months, during which period the King of Portugal is to undertake to see justice done to the French claimants. I have accepted this, but after I communicated with the Portuguese ministers they thought that I ought to stipulate that the letters should be revoked altogether, or at least that during the suspension it should be agreed that justice should be done on both sides reciprocally. This the French consider a rejection of the understanding arrived at with me, and the letters of marque are consequently still in operation.
It has been decided here to recognise the succession to the principality of Orange, as it was bequeathed by the late Prince Renè. The case has been a long one. (fn. 11)
The Prince of Piedmont has arrived at the Emperor's Court, whereat these people are not pleased.
Don Diego Calvaja sent hither by our Prince tells me that he learnt on the way that the Scots had seized three Spanish ships in the harbour of Bordeaux. I have complained of this here, and was told that nothing was known about it, but that M. L'Orge and M. Bury should be written to urging the immediate restitution of these ships if they had been so captured. As no complaint has been made to me by the parties interested, I also am ignorant if the report is true, and I am therefore holding my hand in the matter.
M. D'Albret recently sent to the Emperor, asking him to come to some agreement as to the Kingdom of Navarre. The Emperor instructs me to get quit of the matter as best I can. I am to tell him (D'Albret) that after a decision has been arrived at in the main affairs, this matter shall be dealt with. (fn. 12)
The Duke of Savoy has sent a gentleman hither to justify him to the King in the matter of the rumour about his intention to move war against the King. The latter replied that he never thought that the Duke, a virtuous Prince whom he looked upon as a kinsman and a friend, would think of such a thing. The Dauphin said the same. The only thing I have been able to obtain in the business of the Duke of Alburquerque (fn. 13) is the appointment of a commission to enquire into the capture of the property. The three points referred to them are; first if the ships upon which the property was loaded belonged to subjects of the Emperor; secondly if the vessels were exclusively freighted for the Duke and his household; and thirdly, if the said ships carried any property belonging to English subjects. The Duke's man has left here to obtain the declarations on these points, and a substitute will attend in the case when the information is submitted. From what the Duke told me, I should think these three points could easily be proved in his favour; and they will be obliged to restore his property, unless they invoke the decrees mentioned above.
Don Diego has left here with authority from the King to enquire into the seizures which were the cause of his coming. It is certain that if the enquiry brings anything to light the King will do prompt justice, as he has promised Don Diego. I, for my part, will also press the matter to the utmost.
It is asserted that the Turk left Adrianople for Constantinople, after he heard that the ambassadors of the Emperor and the King were coming to him to treat of the truce. The ambassadors have left Venice. Before doing so they compared their respective instructions, and the French envoy considered those of the imperial ambassador somewhat strange on one point; namely where it speaks of the Turk having shown an inclination towards the truce. The Frenchman said that this might offend the Turk, who is naturally insolent; and he (the French envoy) said that he would carry on the principal negotiations with the Turk, and would lead matters in a way that would secure the object aimed at; our ambassador simply having to sign the treaty when it was made.
I received your letters of 7th instant with the packet addressed to the Queen, which I delivered safely. (fn. 14) I have already answered the contents of the said letters in the aforegoing paragraphs, and have only to add that on the 4th July, the (French) sea force is to embark at Havre de Grace for the enterprise against England. It is asserted that the force will land on the island of England itself and will join the Scots forces in order to penetrate as far as possible inland. In addition to this, the King intends to go in person to the camp before Boulogne for the purpose of constructing the two forts, of which I sent a plan to our Prince, the intention being to reduce Boulogue by famine. There will also be another force of 15,000 men, who will be kept at sea.
(The writer's salary. He will endeavour to find a merchant to cash at Antwerp his drafts on Spain. Claims compensation for loss of exchange. For his first payment he received 600 crowns worth only 36 placks each, so that there is a difference of 80 crowns from the amount in ducats.)
I have now learnt from Germany that M. de Gragnan has declared to the States that the King (of France) desires the holding of the Council, and his statement was made in words satisfactory to the Emperor. I am informed that no decision has yet been arrived at with the Protestants; but it is hoped that they may be brought to reason, especially when they see that the Turk will not attack this year, and that the Emperor and the King are united against them. It appears that they (the Protestants) would rather refer the questions that are to be discussed at the Council, to the Emperor than to the Pope.
Caen, 29 June, 1545.


  • 1. There is in the Record Office (State Papers, Vol. X.. p. 478) the original draft of this letter by Paget, differing slightly in wording from the document at Vienna given above.
  • 2. M. de Roeulx was the Flemish officer who remained with his contingent in the service of the King of England at Boulogne by permission of the Emperor after the latter had made peace with France. He was Adrian de Croy, Count de Roeulx, brother of the Duke of Arschot.
  • 3. See letter from Garbrand to these merchants on page 139.
  • 4. The Fuggers, the great German banking house, the Rothsohilds of the 16th century.
  • 5. The French force approached Scotland from the West and landed at Dumbarton. See Diurnall of rrents.)
  • 6. This intention was carried out mainly daring the feint attack upon the English coast. One of the forts at the south entrance of Boulogne harbour, “opposite the Old man,” was constructed by M. de Chastillon, Captain of Montplaiair, and after him called Chastillon's garden. The other was at St. Jean on the sea shore to the north the town. An extremely curious story is told of the King's message sent to Lord Grey de Wilton by Sir Thomas Palmer respecting Grey's suggestion that he should attack Chastillon's garden. By letter we are told Grey was forbidden to attack, and by word of mouth he was urged to do so. (Lord Grey de Wilton, Camden Society.) An exactly similar story is told respecting the castle of Hardillot. the capture of which has wen mentioned in these letters: only that in that case Peter Carew was the messenger.
  • 7. Doubtless this was the gallant exploit of Lord Grey, de Wilton, then Governor of Guisnes and described by Hollingshead. A further reference to the engagement is made in a later letter in which Hollingshead's aooount is supplemented by further details. Dampierre himself was killed in the fight.
  • 8. Galeotto Pico de la Mirandola Count della Concordia. His castle in the territory of Mantua was a position of importance, and hie strong French sympathies during, and before, the late war had drawn upon him the resentment of the imperialists.
  • 9. The Duchy of Bar, part of the territories of Lorraine, was held as a fief of the empire, whereas Lorraine itself was feudatory to France. The position of the Duke was thus rendered difficult and on the succession of each Duke a protest was made by France on the subject.
  • 10. By the treaty of Crèpy the fortress of Hesdin, which was claimed by the Emperor as part of his territory of Artois, was to be surrendered by the French on reasonable compensation being given for it. As will be seen, this compensation according to the French contention, was to be fixed by the King of France; which of course meant that Hesdin would not be surrendered at all. This is one of the many proofs that neither Charles nor Francis really meant to fulfil the conditions. Both needed peace in the face of the rising power and cohesion of the protestants; but each one thought to cheat the other out of the price.
  • 11. Renè of Nassau, the young Prince of Orange (by right of maternal descent) had been killed at St. Disier, leaving his petty French principality to his first cousin, the child William of Nassau, who inherited also the vast Flemish possessions of his house, and became in after years famous as William the Silent. The Flemish lordships were subject to the suzerainty of Charles; whilst the principality of Orange-Chalons was claimed as feudatory by France (though the claim was always contested). Hence the difficulties raised by the King of France to recognising an adherent and feudatory of the Emperor as Prince of Orange.
  • 12. See note, page 99.
  • 13. See note, page 79.
  • 14. Eleanor of Austria Queen Dowager of Portugal, sister of the Emperor and the second wife of Francis I.