Rome: 1570, January-March

Pages 319-332

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Vatican Archives, Volume 1, 1558-1571. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1916.

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1570, January–March

Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 213.
628. News Letter.
“We have tidings of the return of Signor Chiappin Vitelli without settling a single matter in regard to the accord. He ought by this time to have arrived at Brussels. It is said that the English demanded many things, among others that King Philip should procure them the restoration of Calais; and that as to the moneys they pretend that they are rightfully retained by virtue of a law of theirs that no moneys of any sort may pass out of their kingdom. The English stuffs that were stopped by the Court have been given to the Genoese on account of their old contract with this Court, with which the Genoese have since made a new contract of 800,000 crowns; and they will dispose of these stuffs to the soldiers, if they may, on the said account, and they have security upon the States on account of the impost of 1 per cent.
“In Zealand there are many ships laden for departure to divers places, for which they need licence from the Court, and it is thought they will be furnished with a number of armed ships by way of escort.
“As to the turmoils in England we have letters of the 23rd of last month to the effect that they have made truce till March when the general parliament is to assemble; others affirm the contrary, to wit, that the insurgents daily increase in number, and that they are masters of two ports; that the ship Justiniana riding at two anchors off the port of Falmouth, till the tide should rise and allow her to enter the harbour, some vessels of French and English corsairs displayed the Queen's ensign, and imposing on the master by this false show of security, captured the ship, purposing to take her to Ireland or La Rochelle, there to unload her wines and other merchandise, but that the Queen had since written urgently demanding her release; that in that Council there was much feigning, by which the corsairs were induced to do mischief; that Count Charles of Mansfelt, general of the reiters that are in France, had come to England; that the reiters are returning to Germany with other captains, and are about to land in Hamburg.”
2 Jan., 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 215.
629. News Letter.
… “His Majesty has received positive intelligence from England that the Catholics who were in insurrection in that kingdom had inflicted great loss on the heretics, and that the Queen had sent forces to oppose them: which will give check in no small degree to the Huguenots of France.”
4 Jan., 1570. Collonges. Italian. Copy.
f. 215d.
630. News Letter.
… “English affairs are in greater confusion than ever, the Earl of Suesi [sic] and his brother having taken the side of the Catholics, and refused to go with the Queen or adhere to her side, though besought by her to do so.
“Signor Chiappin Vitelli quitted England and returned to Flanders, not without difficulty because the Queen forbade him to depart and was mighty wroth with him.”
5 Jan., 1570. Paris. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Arm. xliv.
Epp. ad Princ.
vol. 14.
ff. 340–1;
also Epp. Pii. v.
ad Princ.
vol. 3. f. 18.
631. Pope Pius V to Mary, Queen of Scotland.
Administering spiritual consolation to her in her imprisonment, and assuring her that he will never fail to do his good offices with Princes on her behalf.
9 Jan., 1570. Rome. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Nunt. di
Spagna, vol. iv.
f. 116d.
Borgh. I.
vol. 607.
ff. 181d–183.
632. [John Baptista Castagna, Archbishop of Rossano,] Nuncio in Spain to Michael Bonelli, Cardinal Alessandrino.
“I am told as a great secret that the Duke of Alba has sent his Majesty a brief of his Holiness exhorting him [the Duke] to seize the occasion of these disturbances to attack the Queen of England; and I gathered that the King was not merely astonished, but in some degree affronted to find a brief, dealing with a very great and important matter, addressed to his minister with scarce any mention therein of his Majesty, as if the minister were great enough to be able to take such a step upon his own initiative, and as if the Duke were lord of Flanders. Which intelligence being received by me from a good source, the very same morning that the King had read the brief, I communicated it, as I do all matters, to the Father General; and as the same day we had an audience, so in addition to what I had written many days before to his Majesty when he was away, whereof I have already apprised you, we made a fresh appeal to him, while seeming to know nothing either of the contents of the said brief or of his Majesty's having read it; so that we think that not only was he relieved of the umbrage that he seemed to have taken, and quieted in mind, but that he perceived the Pope's judgment in so writing about the matter to be most prudent, despite the omission of all mention of his Majesty; and it seemed to us, and so it has since been understood, that what we said to him, upon occasion of the last advices received thence, to incite him to succour the Catholic party, and ruin that lady who has shown herself so ungrateful and faithless towards his Majesty, failed not to make some impression, for the very same evening he said what I had already said to some of his Council, and bade them meet the next day and seriously deliberate of this matter; and he seems to be not averse to doing something. I know not as yet what the result will be.
“The Imperial and French ambassadors were still at variance about certain matters, so that, it was thought, fresh couriers must be despatched as to certain of the articles; but the King has intervened and taken it upon himself to reconcile them; and so the marriage treaty will be signed, and perchance to-day, which is appointed for the purpose, in the Cardinal's house, and all will be settled.
“The King has behaved graciously, giving the Emperor to understand that he would by all means have this French marriage arranged, otherwise he will not consent to his own marriage. Both ambassadors, and especially the Frenchman, have throughout evinced great gratification at the loving and fatherly solicitude with which the Pope has never ceased to promote these alliances.
“This very moment the Imperial ambassador has sent me word that all is well arranged. I hope that in the end the Portuguese affair will also be settled; for otherwise it would seem that the King is likely to deem himself somehow affronted.”
14 Jan., 1570. Madrid. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 217d.
633. News Letter.
“In consequence of the tidings of the insurrection of the Catholics in England they cease not here to offer prayer to God that He augment the forces of these noble souls.”
14 Jan., 1570. Rome. Italian. Copy.
f. 218d.
634. News Letter.
“We have letters from London of the 2nd inst. reporting that the ship Giustiniana, that was taken by corsairs, had been brought by them to La Rochelle, as some say, or, as others say, to Ireland, the corsairs having learned that the Queen was writing to procure her release.
“As to the turmoils they write diversely; to wit, some say that they were in a worse plight than ever, and that the Queen had caused some of the principal insurgents to be beheaded; others say that there were some captains in revolt who approached the confines of Scotland, and that the Governors of that kingdom gave them to understand that they must retire, otherwise they would have them delivered up to the Queen, and that thereupon the insurgents joined the English Catholics.
“It is also reported that the ship Dolfina and also the ship Formenta were in daily expectation of sailing from England for Italy.”
14 Jan., 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Arm. xliv.
vol. 3. f. 208.
635. — to [James Beaton,] Archbishop of Glasgow [Scottish Ambassador at Paris].
Acknowledging the Archbishop's letter exculpating himself and the Queen of Scotland from the charge of neglecting to write on the score that his and her letters had been intercepted by the enemy. With this explanation the Pope is fully satisfied; and the Queen may be assured that he will never desert her cause, which he commends in his briefs most zealously to the Kings of France and Spain. A brief to the Queen to this effect he has just delivered to the ambassador of the Catholic King for transmission by the messenger who is on the point of departing.
15 Jan., 1570. Rome. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Lib.
Urb. Lat.
f. 222d.
636. News Letter.
“They write from London that the Breton corsairs had taken, besides the ship Giustiniana, the ship Tergi, which had set sail for Italy very richly laden with kerseys, tin, cramoisy and other goods, and that they had taken her with the same ruse which served them for the capture of the Giustiniana, to wit, hoisting the pretended ensign of the Queen.
“As to the turmoils in England nothing more is known than was communicated by letters of the 9th, to wit, that the insurgents had withdrawn towards Scotland, and part of the cavalry towards the mountain, pursued by the Queen's people.”
15 Jan., 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Nunt. di
Spagna, vol. vi.
f. 524.
637. [Michael Bonelli,] Cardinal Alessandrino to [John Baptista Castagna,] Archbishop of Rossano, Nuncio in Spain.
… “When next you have an audience you are not to fail to entreat his Majesty in the Pope's name to use on the Queen of Scotland's behalf what influence he may have with the Queen of England, doing such office of charity as he may deem to be in his power to afford her opportune succour in her grievous persecutions and misfortunes, since, save on the part of his Catholic Majesty, she can hardly hope for any aid or interest in her tribulations.”
15 Jan., 1570. Rome. Italian.
Vat. Arch.
Nunt. di
Spagna, vol. iv.
f. 118d.
Borgh. I.
vol. 607. f. 186.
638. [John Baptista Castagna, Archbishop of Rossano,] Nuncio in Spain to [Michael Bonelli,] Cardinal Alessandrino.
“The day before yesterday I sent many letters by a courier that was going to Genoa to-day, being minded not to let the courier depart without a letter from me, I have resolved to apprise you of what I have learned, albeit this business is handled secretly, as it is fitting. Which is that his Majesty is resolved to afford some aid, for the present in money, to the insurgent Catholics in England; for which purpose, I understand, 200,000 ducats are being remitted to the Duke of Alba, and an English gentleman, who is secretly opposed to the Queen, is being sent hence to seek out those insurgent lords and bring them a credit, for the present, to the amount 10 or 12,000 ducats, ready money, on the part of the King, and to tell them that the 200,000 ducats are at their disposal, if they will be in time and required. They are not as yet minded to give the least hint of aid in infantry, because, I suppose, they desire more light than they as yet have; but perchance they may send some Spanish captain to give the insurgents heart and spirit, and to discover what basis they have to rest on, so as not to hazard a rash movement. It seemed to me worth while sending his Holiness this intelligence.
“On Monday I depart for Cordova.”
18 Jan., 1570. Madrid. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Nunt. di
Venet. vol. vii.
f. 78d.
639. John Antony Facchinetti, Bishop of Nicastro, Legate at Venice to The Same.
… “I must not let this opportunity slip of communicating to you the good news received by the Signory from their consul in England by letter of the 1st inst: to wit, that the Catholics there had taken three ports and a city garrisoned by 700 men, all of whom were set at liberty, and only 30 went off to serve the Queen, the rest joining the Catholic party, which is hourly gaining strength. The Queen is busy devising ways and means, and has closely confined the Queen of Scotland, and caused her to be brought into her own immediate neighbourhood, being very apprehensive on her account, lest she should be named and acclaimed Queen by common consent of the people.”
21 Jan., 1570. Venice. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 224.
640. News Letter.
“We have letters from London of the 23rd inst., which confirm that six ships of the corsairs captured the Venetian ship Vergi off the island. She sailed from England on the 16th, and was taken on the 23rd and brought to La Rochelle. They write that she was laden to the value of about 200,000 crowns, having aboard her about 1,000 pieces of kersey, 400 sacks of wool, and 40 barrels of cramoisy, and a great quantity of lead and tin. The merchants interested made complaint to the Queen; and having through the quondam Cardinal Sciatiglion [Châtillon] procured of her letters of grace, some of them betook them to La Rochelle to see if they might recover the goods; and the Queen was indignant with the corsairs for daring to hoist her ensign and do such things.
“It is also reported that the ship Giustiniana had taken in cargo at Margate, and after learning that the Vergi was taken had got off to Dunes [the Downs], and that the Formenta had fought the corsairs and got off, and the Vergi would have done the like if she had fought instead of confiding [in the ensign].
“As to the Catholic insurgents in England, nothing had happened since their retreat towards Scotland; some write that they are dispersed, as to which the truth will be known this spring.
“The ship Giastiniana had also discharged her cargo at La Rochelle.”
28 Jan., 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 227d.
641. News Letter.
… “They write from Paris that in England matters were being arranged, and that peace had been almost entirely restored.”
2 Feb., 1570. Lyon. Italian. Copy.
f. 229d.
642. News Letter.
“We have intelligence that the Admiral [Châtillon] was collecting troops, whom he will pay from the booty gotten by the corsairs from the Venetian ships that were on their way from England, which booty, it is said, is of the value of 200,000 crowns and more; which is bad news.”
3 Feb., 1570. Lyon. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Arm. xliv.
Epp. ad Princ.
vol. 19. f. 114.
vol. 15.
ff. 10d–11.
643. Pope Pius V to Ferdinand, Duke of Alba.
“In view of the confusion into which English affairs have been thrown by the Catholics in antagonism to the heretics, and by consequence to her who plays the part of Queen of England, whereof We have daily more and better information, We, upon whom rests the burden of Apostolic servitude, must needs be in daily anxiety and solicitude as to their safety who have taken arms no less holy than just for the restoration of the Catholic religion in that kingdom, and have not shrunk from jeopardising their fortunes and their lives in the cause of Almighty God. And whereas by reason of the proximity to that kingdom of the country over which you are set, We understand that you, more than any other, are able in many ways to succour the forces of the English Catholics, therefore We exhort and with the utmost zeal implore you, that if this may be done with the approval and to the advantage of our dearest son in Christ, the Catholic King, you omit not to afford them whatever strength you may, to protect, reinforce or assist their own forces; for as in the event of their being left without support by those who might bear them aid, there is danger of their being overwhelmed by their adversaries, or dispersing of their own accord, so also, if aid should be afforded them, there is hope of the restoration of the Catholic religion in that realm by their means; and if by God's help, supplemented to the best of your ability by your efforts, this should come to pass, you must yourself see how great, how lasting, how true a glory you must thereby win. Whereon, did not the matter speak for itself, We would descant to you at large. But since We know that what We have said, and what We might add, on this subject cannot but be most evident to one of your sagacity and vast experience of affairs, whom also We understand to be of your own accord prompt to do good service in the cause of the Catholic religion, We therefore doubt not that you will gladly and speedily do all that you may in the cause of the Catholic faith without further occasion for exhortation either by Us or by anyone else. Nevertheless that you so do, We, as our office requires, most earnestly entreat you.”
4 Feb., 1570. Rome. Italian. Draft and copy. Printed in Pii V. Epistolœ, ed. Gouban, p. 363.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 226.
644. News Letter.
“By way of Flanders come tidings that the Most Christian King had in great measure disarmed, whereby it was inferred that the accord was arranged, and it was said that the terms could but be bad.
“Also that the Queen of England had reopened negotiations for the accord in the matter of the detention of the Spanish moneys, and that on that account a courier had just been despatched by the Duke of Alva to his sovereign.”
8 Feb., 1570. Prague. Italian. Copy.
f. 236d.
645. News Letter.
“The insurgents in England have dispersed of their own accord, and their leaders have fled to Scotland.
“They also write that Milord Bromes (sic), the bastard brother of the Queen of Scotland, had been wounded by an arquebus discharged from an inn; and that the Scots demanded their Queen of the Queen of England, averring that they would find means to have her by force of arms, if she were not restored to them.
“That Milord Duckers [Leonard Dacre], who is of the Earl of Cumberland's faction, had fled to Scotland.
“That the fleet of 40 ships laden with kerseys was daily expected to sail from England for Hamburg; that it was believed that the ship Formenta had got safely off, and continued her voyage to Italy without molestation. As to the two others taken by the corsairs nothing was known but that they had divided the spoils.”
11 Feb., 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
f. 235.
646. News Letter.
“The death of Milord Bremes (sic), bastard brother of the Queen of Scotland, is understood to have come about on this wise; to wit, that it being the Queen of England's pleasure that he should escort the Queen of Scotland to the chase, with, it is said, some understanding that he should afterwards kill her, and he being come with some barges to convey his sister the said Queen thither, while he stood talking with one of his men, there came a servant and creature of the said Queen of Scotland, who was in the secret, and discharged an arquebus at the said lord, firing three balls, killing him with one, the man that was speaking with him with another, and the said lord's horse with the third.
“We learn from England that the Queen was mustering 6,000 soldiers, and also arming six ships to be sent to Scotland in aid of those Huguenots, and to extirpate those Catholics who have fled from England to Scotland.
“Also that the ship Formenta got safe into Falmouth harbour, and warned the other ships Moceniga and Dolfina of all the peril of capture by the corsairs; and so they would all go in convoy to Italy; as to the other two that were taken it was said that all the goods would be sold.”
15 Feb., 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Arm. xliv.
Pii V. Epp. ad
Princ. vol. 19.
f. 132. vol. 15.
ff. 13d–16.
647. Pope Pius V to Thomas, Earl of Northumberland, and Charles, Earl of Westmorland.
“We have lost no time in replying to your letters of Nov. 8 received by Us on Feb. 16; whereby, apprehending more clearly and intimately the woes and calamities not wholly unknown to Us before, We are afflicted with that distress of mind which the unmerited character of these evils, which We in your persons suffer, and our fatherly love towards you and the rest of the Catholics in that kingdom ought to excite in Us; for, besides that by virtue of our common office of pastoral charity We are bound to rejoice or grieve in the weal or woe of all the faithful in Christ, and of every province in which the Christian name is held sacred, We feel that our love and benevolence are due in an especial degree to that realm, which, We remember, was by the labour and pains (after God) of a Roman Pontiff, our most blessed predecessor, turned from the worship of stocks and stones to the Christian faith, and by worthy men sent thither by him established in Catholic morals and doctrine, and was wont to accord to the Apostolic See signal faith and sincere devotion. Wherefore, how great are the grief and agitation with which We hear of these evils, which, on your own and your country's part, you no less justly than pitifully deplore in your letters, We cannot readily find words to express: We grieve that it should be in our pontificate rather than in any other that the Christian commonwealth should be invaded by so many and so potent poisons of wicked heresies, and afflicted with such deadly wounds; We are agitated because We cannot but be anxious about the safety of you and the rest of the Catholics; but yet, calling to mind the effectual prayer of Him who craved for Blessed Peter that his faith might fail not, and, while He suffers His church to tarry long in tribulation, yet guides her the more admirably by the providence of His secret counsel the more violently He perceives the waters to be troubled, We do not despair of that which We have heard has happened in times past happening again with God's help in our own time, to wit, that she, who during the stress of heretical persecution has often seemed to be trodden under foot, may yet, God making her His sign of good omen, return to her ancient state of felicity, and from what seemed her loss reap gain.
“For, lo now He who makes of old things new and of new things old, our Lord Jesus Christ has perchance by you, men not less illustrious by noble birth than eminent in zeal for Catholic piety, decreed to renew and perhaps to strengthen the ancient bond between your kingdom and the Roman Church, and to that end has put into your hearts that design, most worthy of your zeal for the Catholic faith, of liberating that kingdom from a most vile servitude to a woman's lust, and endeavouring to reclaim it to its pristine obedience to the Holy Roman See. Which pious and religious emprise of yours We (as it is meet) commend, giving due thanks to God, and bestowing upon it the blessing that you crave of Us; and you who seek refuge in the power and protection of Ourself and this Holy See, to whose authority you submit, We with due benignity receive and welcome, exhorting you in the Lord, and with our whole heart's yearning beseeching you, with all constancy to persevere in this noble resolution and laudable design, being assured that Almighty God, whose works are perfect, and from whom is your desire to be of service to the cause of the Catholic religion in that realm, will be a very present aid to you. And even if in maintaining the Catholic faith and the authority of this Holy See you must needs meet death and pour forth your blood, yet better far were it, confessing God, by the short trial of a glorious death to wing your flight to life eternal than by a base and ignominious life to pander to the lust of an abandoned woman, to the loss of your souls. For think not, dear sons in Christ, that they whom you name, Catholic bishops or nobles of that realm, who rather than swerve from the confession of the Catholic faith were either cast into prison or otherwise subjected to unmerited suffering, have fared ill; for their constancy even now, as We deem, confirmed by the recent example of Blessed Thomas, Archbishop of Canterbury, none can praise as it deserves. Following which example be ye too of brave and constant mind; nor retrace your steps in face of any depicted perils or any menaces, for powerful is God, in whom should be your hope, who cast Pharaoh's chariot and army into the sea, to shatter the forces and might of His enemies, so that by you there may be restored to that realm its pristine religion and ancient dignity; to which end We will not only aid you by doing those offices which you desire of Us with such Christian Princes as you choose, but also by forthwith granting you such sum of money as our present resources may enable Us to furnish you withal, as our dear son Robert Rodolph [Ridolfi] will give you more clearly and fully to understand, it being also our purpose to endeavour to grant you somewhat more than the slenderness of our resources may warrant, and with a willing and cheerful mind to lend your pious enterprise all the assistance that with the means at our disposal We by God's grace may.”
20 Feb., 1570. Rome. Latin. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Arm. xliv.
Pii V. Epp. ad
Princ. vol. 19.
f. 123. vol. 15.
f. 17.
648. The Same to Philip II King of Spain.
“We have instructed our venerable brother John Baptist, Archbishop of Rossano, our Apostolic See's Nuncio at your Majesty's Court, to lay before you in our behalf certain matters of urgent importance in regard to the redressal of the Queen of Scotland's wrongs, and the aid to be extended to the effort being made on behalf of religion by the Catholics in England and their forces. We crave for his tale credence on the part of your Majesty, seeing that you have already, as We learn from the said Nuncio's letters, done such office in this matter as We are greatly delighted withal, and to which We, in our pastoral solicitude, would have exhorted you, but that our exhortation was forestalled by your signal piety towards Almighty God and zeal for His honour, on account whereof We give you due praise in the Lord, being assured that in those matters which pertain to the cause of Almighty God, you will never stand in need of our or any other's exhortations.”
22 Feb., 1570. Rome. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Misc. Arm. ii
vol. 100.
(Polit. 99.)
f. 164.
649. Sentence of Pope Pius V declaring Elizabeth, the pretended Queen of England, and her adherents heretics, and all her subjects absolved from their oath of fealty etc. on pain of anathema.
The operative words are as follows:—
“We declare the said Elizabeth heretic and fautress of heretics, and her adherents, to have fallen under sentence of anathema, and to be cut off from the unity of the Body of Christ, and her, Elizabeth, to be deprived of her pretended right to the said realm and of all and every dominion, dignity and privilege; and also the nobles, subjects and peoples of the said realm, and all else who in any manner have made oath to her, to be for ever absolved from such oath, and all duty of liege-fealty and obedience, as by the authority of these presents We absolve them, and deprive the said Elizabeth of her pretended right to the realm and of all else aforesaid, and lay upon all and singular the nobles, subjects and peoples, and others aforesaid, our injunction and interdict, that they presume not to yield obedience to her, or her admonitions, mandates and laws; otherwise We involve them in the like sentence of anathema.”
25 Feb., 1569[–70]. Rome. Latin. Bull. Copy.
Printed in Bullarium Romanum
(Cocquelines 1746) vol. iv. pars iii. p. 98: Camden, Ann. ed. 1630, Lib. ii. p. 7.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 240.
650. News Letter.
“We have letters from England of the 12th of last month to the effect that the Queen was sending some ships with troops to Scotland, and also other troops by land, against the Catholics who fled from her realm to Scotland, and are well received by the Catholics of Scotland.
“That that very day there arrived at London the Venetian ship Fedrina, and that a little earlier the ships Dolfina and Moceniga had put out from Margate for Italy, which ships joined the ship Formenta in Falmouth harbour that all three might sail in convoy, being provided by the Queen with an armed ship by way of escort, but at heavy charges, that they might be secure against the attacks of the Breton corsairs.
“That the said Queen was negotiating the accord touching the moneys retained by her with the Genoese merchants to their satisfaction, being content to have the use of them for three years, and giving the merchants by way of security the town of London; however, the said three years were not to begin to run until she should have made the accord with the Catholic King, touching which accord the said Queen is to send her commissaries to Brussels to treat with the Duke of Alva.”
5 March, 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 241.
651. News Letter.
… “It is reported that the Queen of England has made the accord with the merchants, the terms being restitution of the moneys by three instalments.”
8 March, 1570. Prague. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Nunt. di
Spagna, vol. vi.
f. 535d.
652. [Michael Bonelli,] Cardinal Alessandrino to [John Baptista Castagna,] Archbishop of Rossano, Nuncio in Spain.
… “That brief which was written to the Duke of Alva was to save time in a matter of such importance, his Holiness premising that it was addressed to a minister of the King invested with authority and special jurisdiction in such cases; had he not had such authority, it was not to be supposed that his Holiness would have done so pious and charitable an office as to solicit succour for that Queen of a minister of his Majesty. But the Pope marvels not a little that his actions, which are all directed to a good end, should be sinisterly interpreted by those concerned; and I may tell you, that before your letters arrived, his Holiness had given orders that his Majesty should be written to touching this same matter of giving succour to the Queen of Scotland and the insurgent Catholics of England, as you may see from the copy of the brief which accompanies this letter. And although we have since learned the provision that his Majesty designs to make in aid of that enterprise, yet his Holiness has decided none the less to place the said brief in your hands, that it may at any rate confirm his Majesty in his good resolution, as it appears that he is already of his own accord zealous for this good work.”
8 March, 1570. Rome. Italian.
Vat. Arch.
Misc. Arm. ii.
vol. 84.
(Polit. 83.)
f. 23.
653. Mary, Queen of Scotland to [James Beaton, Archbishop of Glasgow,] Scottish Ambassador at the French Court.
… “I have just written to the King, the Queen Mother, M. d'Anjou, and my uncle, the Cardinal of Lorraine, to thank them for the care they bestow upon me and my affairs. I pray you to thank the Council and the nobles in my name, and entreat them to continue in these good offices, following as the King shall lead.
“You will be diligent in soliciting the passage of the succour to Scotland as soon as may be.
“As to the man [Gartley] who, you write, has been sent to Scotland towards Dumbarton Castle, I think he must have been there already, because I am informed, that it is said in Scotland that some one had arrived at Dumbarton by a little ship; that he had visited the Castle, and made a complete survey of the interior and of the neighbourhood to see where a force might disembark; and after spending but three days there, had returned.”
9 March, 1570. [Tutbury.] Italian. Copy.
Vat. Lib. Urb.
Lat. 1041.
f. 250.
654. News Letter.
“We have letters from London of the 12th inst. with tidings that the ship Formentona was attacked on her voyage to Italy by Breton corsairs, and after a long fight got off, some say, or may have been taken, say others.
“That the Catholics of the North were again in insurrection, and many were departing to join the Catholics of Scotland who were also in insurrection; and that of late two companies of horse had departed for Scotland; and in all the island there was nothing heard but the sound of trumpets and drums.
“That the Queen demanded of the Scots much money which, she said, was owing to her by that bastard Milord of Scotland, who was of late slain by the arquebusade; and that the Scots replied that he had left no goods of any sort, and so they were not bound to pay his debts.
“Three commissaries sent by the English nation to arrange the question of traffic with these countries with the Duke of Alva have arrived at Brussels; and it is believed that it will all be adjusted, and that whoso has been wronged to his loss, and these merchants, will rather be content to forfeit the half of the goods taken from them than forego the power of dealing with the English.”
18 March, 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Arm. ii.
vol. 84.
(Polit. 83.) f. 23.
655. [John Leslie, Bishop Elect of Ross,] Scottish Ambassador in England to [James Beaton, Archbishop of Glasgow,] Scottish Ambassador in France.
… “Gartley has got his passport here, and has departed for Scotland by way of Carlisle, and will go straight to Dumbarton. He bears letters of credence from her Majesty to those lords her good subjects; and by several other ways we have sent letters to give them heart and hope of speedy succour by the Most Christian King, and also by other Christian Princes.
“The turmoils in Scotland are big enough, and grow daily, because the Queen of England keeps Randolph at Edinburgh, who foments and sustains them to the best of his power. He brought with him a great sum of money, the result of which is that, while the Earl of Morton and Lord Lindsay have a faction of their own, all the rest of the country is pretty well opposed to them.
“Randolph wrote not long ago to his mistress, that, unless she speedily send a mighty good army to forestall that which may be sent by the Most Christian King, all the kingdom without exception will return to the devotion and obedience of their Queen; and that they are about to demand her restoration; among whom the Earl of Athol is accounted one of the chief and best affected to the Queen. This has caused me to be deprived of the liberty I had to speak with the Queen of England, who was wont to hear me gladly, and at my instance, and in deference to my slight judgment, to postpone rigorous proceedings, especially against our country. In my absence Secretary Cecil and his faction have so biased their mistress against Scotland that there can now be no more talk of any good understanding. They have raised an army, which is already on the march northward, the Earl of Sussex being lieutenant-general; it set forth from here on the 17th inst. They have determined to attack Scotland, and their strength is 6,000 foot and 4,000 horse. Yet for all this army I am not disheartened, if the Queen's good subjects receive speedy aid. They have with them the Earls of Northumberland and Westmorland, Lord Dacres and their friends. Nor are all that oppose them their enemies, so that it is most expedient that they be succoured with all possible expedition.
“The Most Christian King reaps some advantage by these turmoils of Scotland and England. The Queen cannot afford the Admiral [Châtillon] aid; and it is worth while to take a lesson from Secretary Cecil, by whose policy the wars have been kept afoot these nine years past in France, that folk may live in peace here; and so, methinks, it were well that the King should aid us in Scotland, otherwise, if the Queen should make herself mistress of the country, there will be a fresh outbreak of war in France.
“We stand on the same terms with the Queen of England as formerly, offering her an assured title to this crown for her and her posterity, and amity for the future: beyond that we have not gone.
“The Queen of England told M. de la Mothe, the Most Christian King's ambassador, in his audience last Sunday, that she was minded to send an army into Scotland to seek out her rebellious subjects and chastise those that harbour them: she declared that she was informed that Monsieur and the Admiral had agreed to come to England to succour a lady that is kept prisoner there, and that she will keep a sharp look out for them.
“You can assure the Cardinal of Lorraine, and all there who are our friends, that so great is the constancy of our mistress in religion that she will rather part with her crown and life together than with her faith; and that she has never listened to a word of aught that is contrary to the Catholic religion, or of any proposal of marriage save that of which I wrote to you this winter with the Duke of Norfolk.
“I doubt not that the Earls of Huntly and Argyll are no true and loyal subjects of our mistress, as also many others who favoured the Earl of Murray.
“The Queen of England on all occasions gives stiff answers to the Most Christian King's ambassador in regard to our affairs, to make it appear that any favour that she grants is prompted only by her own friendliness; but if she saw some appearance of succour, she would shew herself more courteous.
“The Pope has written to the Queen, whereby her Majesty is much comforted, as well by reason of the succour that he promises, as of his holy, fatherly and most tender and compassionate words.
“We hope that God will grant him the satisfaction of seeing these two realms by his authority and aid return at His appointed time to the obedience of the Holy Catholic Roman Church. To this effect you will write to Mgr. Dunblane, apprising him of all, in order that he may do such offices there as the exigencies of this cause demand, and according to the tenor of her Majesty's last letters to him from Tuberri [Tutbury].”
24 March [,1570]. Italian. Copy.
Vat Lib.
Urb. Lat.
1041. f. 261.
656. News Letter.
“These commissaries of England pass Holy Week here, and then the first Thursday after the feasts are to assemble in Brussels with three other commissaries appointed by the Duke of Alva to treat of the accord, which commissaries are Gasparo Sez, Treasurer of the Court, M. d'Asonville [Assonleville], and the Giustineto for criminal causes; and it is believed that they will arbitrate to good purpose.
“The Germans have received their arrears of pay and are disbanded; and there remain only four companies in Zealand under the Count of Lodrone.
“We have letters from England of the 18th inst. to the effect that the ship Formentona had safely run the gauntlet of the corsairs, who had a long fight with an Osterling ship, which being observed by the Portsmouth people, they deemed it was the Formentona that was engaged; and the corsairs, having learned that the Duke of Alva was arming some ships, sailed away from that port, and while some stationed themselves in the channel between Dover and Calais, others scoured the sea, doing much damage, and some other of their ships were by chance lost.
“The Queen of England was sending 5,000 foot and 2,000 horse to Northumberland against the Catholic exiles who designed to join the Catholics of Scotland. The Queen still kept the Queen of Scotland prisoner with her ambassador, the Bishop of Ross.”
26 March, 1570. Antwerp. Italian. Copy.
Vat. Arch.
Pii v. Brev.
Arm. xliv.
vol. 19. f. 145.
vol. 15. f. 52.
657. Pope Pius V to Ferdinand, Duke of Alva.
Enclosing the bull excommunicating Queen Elizabeth for publication in the Netherlands, and especially in the maritime parts most frequented by English traders, that the news may the more readily reach England.
30 March, 1570. Rome. Latin. Copy.