Spain: August 1547, 1-15

Pages 130-133

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 9, 1547-1549. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1912.

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August 1547, 1–15

Aug. 10. Paris K. 1487. St. Mauris to Prince Philip.
Since my last the French King's galleys have gone to Scotland to help the Scots to recover the castle of St. Andrews, now held by the English. Nearly 4,000 foot men have been sent to Scotland from Brittany, with a number of horse. The English are powerful at sea, and it is said will stand firm to this fight, though the Dauphin declares that he has no intention of going to war with them, alleging that the castle (St. Andrews) was captured by a Scotsman and not an Englishman; whilst the English say that the place is held for the King of England. During the voyage of the galleys thither they captured two English vessels in consequence of their finding on board of them certain French prisoners. The ships captured were sent to Dieppe having been declared fair prizes by the Admiralty Judge. But on their way they put into an English port to take fresh water, where three of their men were captured, whereat the crews of the galleys seized three Englishmen elsewhere. All this looks to me like fanning the flame to make it burn the fiercer. We shall soon see how the business will end.
M. de Brissac has gone to the Emperor from the King of France to discuss terms of reconciliation, and I trust that his mission will soon succeed. I hear, on the subject that the Dauphin will accede to any conditions, so long as he is allowed to retain Piedmont, and these people (the French) say, that if peace be not concluded they mean to do their very utmost against the Emperor and to direct all their energies to his detriment. The Constable himself has conveyed this to me.
For my own part I am of opinion that the Dauphin will make no move against the Emperor this year, even if no other reason than that he is very uncertain of the friendship of the King of England. It is quite understood that they intend to keep their German troops all the winter because they fear that they would not be allowed to bring them out of Germany again next year. It is believed that these troops will be separated in garrisons on the frontiers of Picardy, Champagne and Burgundy. It is said, however, that before putting them into garrison they intend to send them towards Abbeville and Boulogne, in order to compel the English to send more men across the sea this autumn, and thus to reduce their capability of sending troops to relieve St. Andrews.
These people (the French) are in busy negotiations with the Confederacies, which they say are strongly in their favour especially the protestants. I have communicated to them the contents of two “propositions” made in those parts by Liancourt and Bassefontaine, especially the scandalous and shameful words they used against the Emperor. They (the French) are unable to excuse such words, but they say that their Ambassadors have gone beyond their instructions, and in truth they are annoyed that the thing has become public, and especially as they (the Ambassadors) have acted as they have done in contravention of the assurances of friendship given by the Dauphin to the Emperor. They are trying to smooth it all over by means of Brissac.
No trustworthy news has been received of the Venetians having entered into an alliance with the Pope and the Dauphin: but the Dauphin is striving his utmost to bring it about, urging upon them the same arguments as those used towards the Confederacies, and repeating to them the complaint about Marignano. As they (the Venetians) are astute people, they are anxious that the league should be effected on that ground (i.e. of Marignano). They say that otherwise they will withdraw.
The Flemish frontiers are being well provided, and these Germans that they have in their service will enable them to reinforce them still more.
The Constable is all powerful in this Court at present, but there is bitter jealousy on the part of the Guises, who bear secret enmity to him, and many obstacles are thrown in the Constable's way. L'Ordres the master of the household of the Queen of France has gone to the Emperor on her Majesty's behalf, and on the solicitation of the Dauphin to promote the peace negotiations. The Queen, indeed, is being made their principal instrument to bring about better relations, and it is confidently believed that the Emperor will look favourably upon this.
Ville de Coutrai, 10 August, 1547.
Aug. 15. Paris K. 1487. St. Mauris to Prince Philip.
As Monsieur de Sieppières, equerry of the stables to the Most Christian King, is being sent to your Highness by his Master, I hold it to be my duty to inform your Highness of what happened recently at Rheims at the solemnity of the consecration of the King, and in a separate note that accompanies this letter I give a detailed account of all that passed on the occasion.
The King told me at Rheims that he had sent fifteen galleys to Scotland under the command of the Prior of Capua (Leone Strozzi) to capture the castle of Saint Andrews in Scotland, which had been occupied by a certain Scot. Since then, I being again with the King on the 15th instant, he told me that at that moment he had just heard the news of the capture of the said castle, and that he had by this means been able to punish a man who had rebelled against the Queen of Scots, to whom and to her realm he (the King of France) owed every assistance.
I understand, Sire, that the castle was surrendered conditionally on terms, and that before giving it up, the Scots, who were in great number, had seized another castle on the frontier which had been taken from them by the English in the late war. The English thereupon raised a powerful army to relieve the said fortresses, but as the latter surrendered immediately their (i.e. the English) designs have ceased. They (the English) are deeply grieved at these captures. Nevertheless, as I understand, the King (of France) claims that he has done nothing against the treaty of peace, since he has only turned out the Scotsman who unlawfully held the castle of St. Andrews, and has punished a rebel.
The King (of France) is now on the way towards Picardy, and it is said that he intends to go and inspect his fort near Boulogne. They also say that he is sending a good part of the lansquenets he has in his service to the same neighbourhood, to the number of about twelve thousand, with sixteen thousand on paper. He assures the Emperor, however, that this is not with any offensive intention towards him.
I have heard, Sire, from a secretary of the King of the Romans that the latter had received letters from his ambassador to the Turk at Adrianople, M. Gerard, that he had agreed upon a peace with the Turk for five years, during which period each party should hold what they now occupy in Hungary, and the Turk would abandon his claims on Transylvania. The brigands, moreover, who had made incursions were to be punished and fugitives from justice on both sides surrendered. By the same letters also he learnt that the brother of the Sophy had been turned out of his dominions by the Sophy, and had taken refuge with the Turk, who had received him well and was about to prepare a powerful force to invade the Sophy's dominions next winter. News also comes from the same source that Count Roquendolf had absented himself from the Turkish Court, and it is believed that he has fled with one of the principal Pashas of the Turk, who has now been condemned to perpetual exile. The Count had been promoted by the Turk at the instance of this Pasha.
Since the King of the Romans subjugated the rebels in Prague, as your Highness will have heard, he has commenced to punish the other rebellious towns in Bohemia, from which, as he says, he means to squeeze a pretty penny.
The Christian King, Sire, is acting most dutifully in filial fashion towards the Queen; giving her all that belongs to her in regard to her dower and allowance. The Queen is therefore entering into peaceable enjoyment of her property and is greatly respected by the King. The Constable has helped her Majesty in every possible way with the King.
The Constable, Sire, has sent me a message on behalf of the King, to say that if your Highness desired anything in his power to give, especially in this realm, he begs you will let him know through me, and he will do his best to please you. This, he says, will be the greatest pleasure that he could have, and he begs your Highness to prove his sincere goodwill towards you. In this connection I cannot fail to say that the envoy who is being sent, M. de Sieppières, is in good reputation with the King, and is a person well qualified for his mission.
Coudrai, 15 August, 1547.
P.S.—Sire, I beg most humbly that your Highness will be pleased to have some money sent to me for my expenses, of which a whole year is due. It may be delivered to the Countess d'Antremont at St. Maur with the Queen Dowager. If I do not receive money I shall be obliged to resign my post.